Tuesday, 5 April 2016

the usual suspects or noble-lie

The German press has been nursing a real scoop, patiently, in the emergent scandal of the so called Panama Papers—an unbelievably huge and historic cache of incriminating documents that perjures several prominent figures of public-trust. The implication and betrayal of, for example, the government of Iceland, whom were elevated on a mandate of reform and anti-corruption, is tragic and disappointing but hardly surprising, along with the broader clientele of this holding-company that manages hundreds of thousands of shell-businesses and front organisations globally in attested tax-oases and money-laundering schemes. Nearly every country is participating in one way or another, but the conspicuous absence (at least so far) of the US and Atlantis strikes me as singularly odd. One might reasonably suspect that Plato’s Republic might have indeed kept itself pristine by not confusing self-interest for the Good.

It seems that America is, however, an unlikely candidate for propagating this noble-lie (politically expedient fable) on such a scale without itself being taken in—especially one with the locus in one of the former client-states, itself. I wonder if such a revelation weren’t allowed to incubate for so long in order to selectively discredit dissenting voices. America, despite its outward stance and unique policy of universal-collection (only copied by Eritrea, a practise condemned by the US State Department as a way for dictatorships to ensure funding and punishing immigrants by dint of where they were born), is a tax-haven itself and far from above-board. What do you think? It’s a bit like New Zealand on the globe often being obscured by a geopolitical legend or countries being greyed out due to lack of data. Multi-national corporations have no allegiance, obviously, but are also not completely untethered from their homelands. Those with political power rarely exceed their expectations and are deigned worthy for doing their jobs without too much destructive moon-lighting, but if we are so easily satisfied, I wonder if we deserve better—having dubiously made disloyalty into a virtue. In this environment, everyone is pressured to be an entrepreneur and to supplement one’s income in one way or another: going to unethical and opaque lengths is bad enough, if only skirting the law as it’s been handed down, but hiding one’s questionable and subversive investments, as this legal firm facilitated as well, seems even worse.