Wow, these academics sure seem to have a hard time getting to the point – only to miss it completely. 56 fucking pages to dance around, but never quite grasp the truth that citizenship-based taxation is fundamentally, morally wrong and indefensible – period. As many have convincingly argued before, CBT is no different than slavery, Jim Crow laws or apartheid. What exactly is there to talk about?
What really annoys me is the unstated presumption of people like Mason and Kirsch (who no doubt genuinely consider themselves our intellectual superiors) that it is somehow legitimate to lovingly, almost pornographically, explore CBT – in a world which so categorically rejects it – only because it is an American idea and policy and therefore somehow intrinsically worthy of debate. I counter that there is nothing to debate, and no need to kill innocent trees and waste energy on bits and pixels pathetically striving – and spectacularly failing – to turn lead into gold. The best I can say for Mason is that she greatly disappoints me, while Kirsch, as always, simply disgusts me. These people are no magical alchemists of inhumane tax policy and never will be. Rather, they will become the true footnotes of this sordid chapter of American history.
But what the hell do I know since I only have a lowly B.A.?
As FBAR enforcement grows, it is inevitable that various aspects of Mr. FBAR will be subjected to constitutional scrutiny. Although it will take time, Mr. FBAR will certainly be invited for lunch by the Supreme Court of the United States. The FBAR rules apply to U.S. persons regardless of where they live. Therefore, the FBAR law is also an extraterritorial application of U.S. law. Therefore, I could imagine a circumstance where the obligations imposed by Mr. FBAR could be considered by a foreign court. (How about this for an example: A U.S. citizen is a real estate broker in Canada. As such he is required to maintain a trust account. Clearly the FBAR law would require the account to be disclosed to the U.S. government and the records retained for a “fishing expedition”. Imagine further a Canadian statute that criminalizes the disclosure of the contents of trust accounts. This sets the stage for the a “conflict of laws” issue. FATCA anyone? But, this is all for another post.)
The Constitution of the United States of America
You will find it here – definitely worth a read.
Mr. FBAR and the U.S. Constitution
FBAR requires the reporting of foreign financial accounts and the retention of financial records. The requirement to report financial accounts is NOT a requirement to report a “taxable transaction”. Therefore, the requirement to report financial accounts is a requirement to “turn over the keys to your finances” to the government. Once the government has the keys, they can unlock the doors, look around as much as they want, make notes of things to ask about and discover all kinds of things that are unrelated to taxes. Should citizens be required to give the government the keys to their lives? Continue reading