There’s sabre-rattling, bitching and moaning – and then there’s this:
The vast majority of European countries – all those that lose out because of the existence of these tax havens – should unite in a determined effort to end these countries’ ability to offer safety to tax evaders by granting anonymity, confidentiality and secrecy. The exact modalities may differ from case to case. Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man should simply be absorbed lock, stock and barrel into the UK, with English laws, rules and regulations applying across the board. The special status of these strange entities is not cute; it’s an enabler and facilitator of unethical and illegal behaviour. The EU should adopt a directive on bank secrecy that would end the nefarious practices of Luxembourg and Austria. Belgian dentists will just have to get used to paying taxes. Andorra, Monaco and Liechtenstein should be given the choice of ending bank secrecy or facing annexation (by France and (once it abandons its bank secrecy laws) Austria respectively).
Right. Let’s start killing people over taxes. Great idea, Mr Buiter.
But he is much less bellicose in the case of Switzerland, perhaps because every able-bodied male is a member of the militia and possesses a fully-automatic machine gun.
Good thing they decided to keep their air force, eh?
In another vote on Sunday, the Swiss overwhelmingly rejected a ban on training flights by the Swiss Air Force over tourist areas.
The people’s initiative, launched by an environmental group, was aimed at silencing the noise of fighter jets in these areas.
Nearly seven out of ten voters and all 26 cantons rejected the proposal.