I love my country, it’s the government I’m afraid of

ilovemycountry

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND – Ed. note: William Olenick has been active in Republicans Abroad in Switzerland, where he is a longtime resident. He sent the following email letter to friends 28 January; we reprint it in full as part of our coverage of the ongoing problems for US citizens in Switzerland.

As per the directive in the email/article, I am reproducing this extraordinary letter on this blog at the bottom of this post. A special thanks to Mr. Olenick for sharing his views.
He states:

For the last 25 years I have been busting open nitch markets for American products, contributing to lowering the trade deficit, developing new markets for US producers, creating employment for my brethren back home, increasing the tax base where they live.

The only way to do this is to be on the ground in the countries you are selling.

This is a point that has made by Roger Conklin over and over and over. In order to achieve something in a country is to be on the ground in that country. And he’s right the people in Washington don’t understand that. I recently saw the movie Zero Dark Thirty – the hunt for Bin Laden. There’s a great line in it when Maya, the heroine of the movie, (of  “I’m the motherfucker who found this place – sir!” fame)  informs her “Homelander Mentality” supervisor that:

“You don’t understand Pakistan” – implying that one had to be in Pakistan to find Bin Laden. (Of course only the geniuses in Washington would not understand that.)

To put it another way, the movie suggests that: The assasination of Bin Laden was possible only by having – are you ready for this – U.S. citizens abroad on the ground in Pakistan! One would think the U.S. would honor them. But no.  Instead the U.S. government recognizes the “value” of U.S. citizens abroad through the FATCA and the “FBAR Fundraiser“.

He points out that:

These absolute black boot fools in DC are shooting themselves in the foot and biting the hand that feeds them.

Sure there were those evading taxes and there were many greedy bankers stumbling over themselves to help those evaders, but the numb nuts in Washington are ruining the lives of hundreds of thousands of innocent American citizens, and just spitting in the face of our allies, by strong arming them (Remember the Nazis?) to enforce US tax law, when they have nothing to do with the US tax system.

Yet another comparison between the U.S. government and a certain European government in the 1930s. How could all this be? He ends by getting at the “root of the problem”:

We need to do away with the two-party system, as it serves its citizens poorly, we need to set term limits on all elected officials, coming to Washington, and should pass a law that the newly elected must bring their staffers from their home states.

These professional staffers, on the hill, are a large percentage of the problem and they are not even elected!

A very astute comment in indeed.  Our “professional staffers” include the people who brought us OVDI and OVDP. Yes, it must be. These programs not the creation of Congress.

The American people are fundamentally good, just, decent people. I think they would be shocked to learn that the Obama administration is carrying on a dirty and silent war against U.S. citizens abroad!

The country has been hijacked and is governed by either the Republicans or the Democrats (two private clubs that block access to the political process and control all wealth and opportunity for themselves).

So what should you do?

1. Encourage and support your local independent candidates.

2. If you don’t have one, Jesse Ventura would be a good start.

Learn to: “Live a little, laugh a little” and wish William Olenick the best in Vermont. This is a man who clearly loves his country. It’s his government that is the problem!

Thank you Mr. Olenick!

_____________________________________________

Here is the full text of his email – reproduced with his encouragement!

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND – Ed. note: William Olenick has been active in Republicans Abroad in Switzerland, where he is a longtime resident. He sent the following email letter to friends 28 January; we reprint it in full as part of our coverage of the ongoing problems for US citizens in Switzerland.

“Dear all,

Read the article below my comments and you will see why I also have my problems with the banks and I am tax compliant.

For the last 25 years I have been busting open nitch markets for American products, contributing to lowering the trade deficit, developing new markets for US producers, creating employment for my brethren back home, increasing the tax base where they live.

The only way to do this is to be on the ground in the countries you are selling.

In my case, my markets were Europe, North Africa and the Middle East so it made sense to set up a base of operations in Switzerland, as it was close to the markets, was a well run country, my wife happened to be Swiss, from a large, close-knit family, so it was a no brainer.

Two months ago my bank informed me that I could no longer make wire transfers to the states.

That being the case how will I pay my suppliers?

These absolute black boot fools in DC are shooting themselves in the foot and biting the hand that feeds them.

Sure there were those evading taxes and there were many greedy bankers stumbling over themselves to help those evaders, but the numb nuts in Washington are ruining the lives of hundreds of thousands of innocent American citizens, and just spitting in the face of our allies, by strong arming them (Remember the Nazis?) to enforce US tax law, when they have nothing to do with the US tax system.

It is the job of the IRS to prevent untaxed dollars from leaving the country but they are unable to do that, as they surely are not up to the job, so they blackmail our allies.

The complete lack of justified foresight, coming out of Washington today, is appalling.

This is forcing me to shut down my 100% legal and tax compliant operation abroad, building new long term nitch markets for US products, and to relocate back to Vermont, where I intend to farm.

What ever happened to the pursuit of life,freedom and happiness, as laid out by the constitution?

I refuse to give up my citizenship, as I am 100% American, to my bone marrow.

I could have been Swiss, through my marriage to my wife, but I am not Swiss, I was born American and will die American.

Pass these comments on as you wish and feel free to publish in what ever publication you wish.

We need to do away with the two-party system, as it serves its citizens poorly, we need to set term limits on all elected officials, coming to Washington, and should pass a law that the newly elected must bring their staffers from their home states.

These professional staffers, on the hill, are a large percentage of the problem and they are not even elected!

Don’t get me going…

William Olenick, Zermatt,Switzerland

If you don’t like it you know where to find me.”

Posted 29 Jan 2013 at 14:53
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27 thoughts on “I love my country, it’s the government I’m afraid of

  1. mjh49783

    I think if I was in his situation, I would rather have become Swiss, rather than return to Vermont.

    I can’t fault the man if he wants to be a proud 100% American, as that is decision, and his alone. As for myself, I would be really hard pressed to see any value in retaining US citizenship if my government was shitting on me like that. Meanwhile, blind patriotism doesn’t pay the rent.

    Reply
    1. renounceuscitizenship Post author

      If he were a true Patriot (which is different) from being an “American” he would renounce. His loyalty would to be a place where freedom was valued. That’s not what the U.S. is about anymore.

      Reply
      1. mjh49783

        Meanwhile, what about his loyalty to his wife? Shouldn’t that count for something? Even if I loved my country, there would be no way in hell I would ever leave my wife!

        Seriously, do the feel good sentiments of ‘purple mountain majesties’ and ‘amber waves of grain’ keep you warm at night? Nope, and I could even see the same things if I were to drive through Alberta and Saskatchewan. In the meantime, he’s about to split up his family to be loyal to an ugly assed government that screwed him over like nothing, and for a bunch of ugly people that could really care less about his plight in Switzerland, and that can’t even fathom why he would even want to live outside the US.

        You know what? I take it back. I CAN fault him for splitting up his family! He’s going to leave because he can’t do business there, but yet his business is more important than his wife? Important enough to piss away both his business AND his wife, just to work on some farm in Vermont, and then wrap himself up in patriotic sentiments that have no basis in reality? He sounds like a jerk that can’t even see a good thing if it came up and kicked him in the ass!

    2. renounceuscitizenship Post author

      Yup, those are all good points. Thing is that he hasn’t left Switzerland yet. Interesting the article said that he was a member of “Republicans Abroad”. One thing we have learned from “Democrats Abroad” (Joe Green and company) is that those organizations are just branches of the party and are NOT for the purpose of representing U.S. citizens abroad. We know the Democrats Abroad are like the Stepford Wives.

      http://isaacbrocksociety.ca/2012/12/19/democrats-abroad-are-like-the-stepford-wives/

      Maybe his membership in Republicans Abroad clouds his vision and clarity. Maybe he thinks that he is somehow part of U.S. government and policy.

      But, after all this, I would be surprised if he could ever feel at home in the U.S. Returning to the U.S. is the easiest and most logical option for most Americans Abroad. Yet, they do NOT appear to be willing to consider this. And for good reason – the Obama administration has launched a vicious, unprovoked, unprincipled assault on what (until 2011) was possibly the most patriotic group of Americans in the world. Now, the fastest growing and most articulate expressions of “anti-americanism” are from U.S. citizens abroad.

      Re your comment: He doesn’t love his business more than his family (or he wouldn’t be returning to be a farmer). I wouldn’t read his email as expressing plans cast in stone. What I think is most likely to happen (and I think I will put up a poll) to get peoples’ thoughts on this is:

      1. Unless his wife really wants to move to the U.S., he will stay in Switzerland.

      2. He will find a way to combine his anger toward the U.S. with a new business.

      3. He will renounce U.S. citizenship.

      That’s what I think will really happen. What do you think?

      All of us (myself included) feel a very very deep sense of betrayal. Most of us have endured “anti-Americanism” during our lives outside the U.S. Most of us have defended the U.S. and had faith that it was premised on the principles of freedom, justice, fairness, etc. We know realize that those who preached “anti-Americanism” were right and that we were wrong. The U.S. has evolved into one of the most unprincipled, unfair and unjust countries ever. History will recognize it as such!

      Reply
      1. mjh49783

        You say he hadn’t left yet? I was under the impression that he just threw up his hands and left, or something to that effect.

        I used to be a Democrat myself until I left the States, but I was already becoming disillusioned with them a few years beforehand. I never really was a Republican myself, but I did appreciate the opposing view that they offered, back when it seemed more centered at least. I don’t know. After 8 years of the disaster that was Bush, Obama, in the end, certainly was not the hope and change that I voted for.

        Once I landed in Canada last year, I started looking for groups that represented Americans abroad, along with any information regarding what I could expect as an American living abroad. But in the end, the only websites I found that had any meaningful, and relevant information, without propaganda, are American Citizens Abroad (ACA), The Issac Brock Society, and this one. Democrats Abroad? Yeah, they’re definitely like the Stepford Wives, that’s for sure. I really don’t imagine Republicans Abroad to be any less blatant in their self serving activities. Nevertheless, once I was able to sort out fact from myth, I figured out that I don’t have to feel bad about renouncing or relinquishing US citizenship. However, I didn’t start seriously thinking about renouncing until I read about Eduardo Saverin turning in his passport, and reading how both the politicians, and even a lot of the homelanders, just get all ugly with the choice he made. I just couldn’t get my head around how he could be labelled a tax cheater, when he’s paid far more in taxes than a lot of homelanders ever did, plus he had to pay up the ass in exit taxes just to get out! And really? Exit taxes? C’mon! And don’t even get me started on the farce that is citizenship based taxation! But it was FATCA that did it for me. Now I can’t even have a normal banking relationship with my wife, let alone have a TFSA! I read about people in Europe losing their accounts because they’re American, and then we have the IRS cleaning our people’s retirement, simply because they didn’t even know of any obligation!

        Yes, it’s definitely a strong sense of anger and betrayal that I’m feeling. Meanwhile, fifteen years ago, I would’ve said I was a proud American. Now, I’m probably about as anti-American as one can get. But hey! I’m amongst good company at least!

        As for William Olenick, I hope he searches his soul and realizes that he’s close to home than he knows. I’m sure that after being gone for 25 years, if he were to return to the US for a visit, I have a feeling that he won’t like the changes that took place in that period of time. Meanwhile, I think I need to reflect on the fact that I’m not that far different from him regarding the plight we both have to face regarding the US government, and that my being pissed off towards him regarding his story was regretfully misdirected. Meanwhile, I think he will probably end up renouncing in the end, once the horse blinders of nationalism come off.

    3. renounceuscitizenship Post author

      If he stays in Switzerland he will have to renounce for all the reasons you have mentioned. Who knows though, if he goes back to Vermont and spends all his time on his farm, then maybe he will/can imagine the U.S. as it was. But, my gut feeling is that his last “port of call” will be Switzerland.

      Reply
      1. mjh49783

        You know, with the way they’re talking over at the Issac Brock Society website, it would sound as though he’s packed up and left already.

      1. mjh49783

        I’ve read Olenick’s statement again, and indeed, I didn’t find it, either. I don’t know what they’re seeing over at Isaac Brock, but apparently, someone over there claims to know the guy.

        Still, I believe that if I was in the same boat, I would’ve told my suppliers that I could no longer do business with them, as it’s the US policies that are prohibiting me from wiring them the money. If anything, I think that the US suppliers would probably have a better chance at changing US policy with regard to this issue, being that they’re the ones in the homeland to begin with, trying to get the product out. But, I’m not really convinced that they’ll do much better than Olenick from abroad.

        No. In light of that boneheaded policy, I would conclude that I’ll be consulting with foreign suppliers in order to keep my business running, and then consider renouncing US citizenship. Seems pretty self evident to me just as a pragmatic business move, and I certainly don’t have to chant slogans and burn flags to reach that conclusion.

  2. AJ

    …I don’t think he said anything about leaving his wife; I’m pretty sure they would go together. They are both near retirement and have no children, so they’re not splitting up any family.

    Reply
  3. Jefferson D. Tomas

    I just wished that Olenick would consider other options for bank accounts in order to hold on a bit longer. But if he does go back, I hope he remains becomes active for our cause in the homeland and doesn’t just disappear into the woodwork.

    Reply
    1. mjh49783

      I feel convinced that his letters to Congress will likely not get him anywhere, but it would be one such issue that I wouldn’t mind being wrong on. I’m just not going to hold my breath waiting.

      Be that as it may, he might very well help Americans abroad if he can get someone over there to listen. But as for myself, once I was forced into a position to where I had to protect my wife from my own government, they’ve sacrificed my loyalty to the US in the process. See, I no longer consider myself as an American even though I carry a US passport. It is only a travel document, representative of a culture, and a society that is now alien to me. It no longer describes who I am in my heart, which now feels Canadian. Funny how betrayal can thoroughly change a person, huh?

      That, in a nutshell, explains my bitterness at the Issac Brock Society website.

      Meanwhile, if he does find happiness at a farm in Vermont, then I wish him well in that endeavor. But then, he would no longer be an American abroad, and we wouldn’t really be the right group of people to try and reach out to him, anyway.

      Reply
      1. William Olenick

        FYI. It has been over one year since I wrote that letter and it was just announced that the repeal of FATCA has been adopted as part of the Republican Party’s platform so our activism is gaining
        results….

  4. William Olenick

    FYI.I have just returned from New England and have set up a New-co servicing the agricultural sector in the local food movement.
    Yes America has changed in the last 25 years but in my family if you do not like something you work to change it and do not burn your passport and bridges and head for the hills at the first sign of trouble.
    As an old sailor we call these folks,”Fair Weather Sailors”,who only venture out in fair weather but when the seas are stormy they panic and become dysfunctional.
    I refuse to stay in a land that denies me banking privileges and besides I am not optimistic for the future of Europe and intend to put a large body of water between it and I…
    My re-entry to the homeland will be orderly and I have been welcomed with open arms.
    I advise you all to do the same.
    William Olenick

    Reply
    1. renounceuscitizenship Post author

      “FYI.I have just returned from New England and have set up a New-co
      servicing the agricultural sector in the local food movement.
      Yes America has changed in the last 25 years but in my family if you do
      not like something you work to change it and do not burn your passport
      and bridges and head for the hills at the first sign of trouble.
      As an old sailor we call these folks,”Fair Weather Sailors”,who only
      venture out in fair weather but when the seas are stormy they panic and
      become dysfunctional.
      I refuse to stay in a land that denies me banking privileges and besides
      I am not optimistic for the future of Europe and intend to put a large
      body of water between it and I…
      My re-entry to the homeland will be orderly and I have been welcomed
      with open arms.
      I advise you all to do the same.
      William Olenick”

      William:

      Congratulations on your orderly return to the Homeland. I don’t blame
      you for not wanting to stay in a country that denies you banking
      privileges, of course you are denied banking privileges because of U.S.
      policy. But I suppose that is beside the point.

      You note that:

      “Yes America has changed in the last 25 years but in my family if you do
      not like something you work to change it and do not burn your passport
      and bridges and head for the hills at the first sign of trouble.
      As an old sailor we call these folks,”Fair Weather Sailors”,who only
      venture out in fair weather but when the seas are stormy they panic and
      become dysfunctional.”

      Actually, large numbers of Americans Abroad – who you imply are “fair
      weather sailors” – are extremely patriotic and continue to work VERY HARD to
      change an unfair system. Perhaps, you should invest some of your time in
      working to change the unfair treatment of U.S. citizens abroad.

      America is broke, dysfunctional and behaving in a somewhat predatory
      matter toward the world in general and its citizens abroad in
      particular.

      Now continuing your theme of the “Fair Weather Sailor”, I would like to
      tell you a story about a group of sailors. Their names were: Dudley,
      Stephens and Parker..

      You will meet them in an old British Criminal law case called: Dudley v.
      Stephens

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R_v_Dudley_and_Stephens

      In a nutshell what happened was:

      A group of “fair weather sailors” were in a lifeboat and had run out of
      food and water. The group included Dudley, Stephens and Parker. Dudley
      and Stephens killed Parker for the purpose of eating him and drinking
      his blood. Yes, this is a true story. Click on the link above.

      In case the analogy escapes you:

      The Obama administration has been attacking Americans Abroad and
      destroying their lives. Through OVDP penalties, it is
      eating/confiscating their assets. I could go on but you get the point.

      For many Americans Abroad who don’t want to “return to the Homeland”
      renouncing U.S. citizenship is an act of self-defense.

      Would you have accused Parker of being a “fair weather sailor” if he had
      attempted to defend himself? Obviously NOT.

      So, William I think you should rethink your suggestion that Americans
      Abroad who renounce U.S. citizenship are dysfunctional “fair weather
      sailors”. In fact, Americans Abroad, are in general among the most Patriotic Americans in the world. You see – they are Patriotic Fair Weather Sailors who are being forced to renounce because of a government that is “making them walk the plank!”

      As a Patriotic American, I close by reminding you of the words of that great American write Mark Twain:

      ‘Patriotism is supporting your country all the time and your government when it deserves it.’

      To come full circle – back to what is implied by the title of this post:

      It’s not my country! It’s the Government!

      Reply
    2. Petros

      William, you are mistaken. I live with Canadians, work with them, and have become one of them. Do you think after having built up a life here in Canada after marrying a Canadian wife that I should move back to the US because of the US wants to me to file taxes and wants my Canadian banking information? LOL

      The response is not to return into the loving arms of wife-batterer, but to divorce the sucker and move on. Fair weather sailor, my foot.

      No, here’s a better analogy. The bad weather bush pilot. He’s not afraid to go back into flight in risky conditions, and when he does, his plane is taken down along with his cargo and passengers. Discretion is the better part of valor. “There are some old pilots and there are some bold pilots. But there are no old bold pilots.”

      Reply
      1. William Olenick

        i was a bit harsh but do not take it personally . Canada is a great country and I darned near married 2 gals from up there back in the70/ 80’s.(Not at the same time)
        I have always thought Canada would make a good 51st state…

      2. mjh49783

        Gee. We get to inherit $17 trillion worth of debt, a broken health care system, and a backwards gun culture for the opportunity to be the 51st state?

        I think I’ll pass. LMAO

      3. mjh49783

        ….and while we’re on the subject of patriotism, to renounce or not to renounce, etc…. My first duty and loyalty is to my spouse. Not to a bunch of strangers that demand allegiance, and offer nothing in return.

  5. renounceuscitizenship Post author

    @MJH

    You say your first duty of loyalty is to your spouse and family. That’s what any rational and decent person would think.

    That is NOT the position of the United States of America. The US view is that U.S. citizenship creates a “property interest” in the citizen. Their position is that they own you and that your first duty of loyalty is to them. To understand this better, read this post about the “FBAR Marriage”. It may be a real “eye opener”.

    https://renounceuscitizenship.wordpress.com/2013/08/31/americansabroad-denied-child-tax-credit-for-children-who-are-not-us-citizens-benefit-or-burden/

    Reply

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