But I’m afraid I find myself caring as much as I do about the news that martial arts movie star Jackie Chan has holdings in offshore companies including one called Jumbo Jaz investment. Or that Simon Cowell, various sports stars and someone from FIFA also use such vehicles to stash some of their loot.
Which is about as much as I care about, I don’t know, the Lithuanian shoe polish industry, maybe. No, I exaggerate. Not that much.
As for the revelations that these secretive, tax avoidance schemes are also favoured by associates of Vladimir Putin, deposed Iraqi ministers from the Saddam era, Chinese nomenklatura, bank robbers, and lots and lots of Nigerians, well, colour me surprised.
Couldn’t the International Consortium of International Journalists, which grabbed this alleged super-scoop, have saved itself and us an awful lot of bother and just run the headline: “Official: Bears Shit In Woods. Now we LIST the species that do so”?
So some bloke we’d never heard of from Iceland has resigned. Like we care.
What we should care about very much though, I think, is the way that this story is being a manipulated to a particular end by politicians and the left-leaning media.
(A left-wing media which, incidentally, is quite massively hypocritical on this issue. Not only are numerous leftie bigwigs assiduous tax avoiders, but so is the Guardian newspaper, as I discuss here with my friend Toby Young, who has a hilarious anecdote to relate)
Look at Bernie Sanders. There’s talk – hideous, terrifying talk – that Panama may be just the thing he needs to propel him into the White House. Not only is Hillary personally compromised. (Again). But it plays, perfectly, to that notion Socialists like Sanders are obsessed with these days: that there’s a corrupt, uncontrollable elite who can only brought to account by a good old fashioned dose of the kind of hard-left politics which worked so well for Cuba, Albania and the USSR.
Look at Jeremy Corbyn. The Labour leader hasn’t got this big in his trousers about a front page news story, I imagine, since Margaret Thatcher died.
At last, Corbyn has found a foreign policy mission worth really fighting for. No, not the nuclear deterrent – which he wants to scrap. Not ISIS, whose terrorists he thinks shouldn’t be shot under any circumstances on British streets and who at least one of his party comrades thinks should best be won over by friendly cups of tea.
No, instead Corbyn has seized this opportunity to declare war on the British Virgin Islands and any other British overseas territories and crown dependencies which earn their bulk of their living as tax havens.
Yeah! That’ll show them! That’s what Britain really needs in a prospective leader: someone who’s not afraid peevishly to ruin the livelihoods of people in far off places while making not a smidgen of a difference to the lives of anyone in Britain.
And instead of calling this bearded Trotskyite Islamist-suck-up on his pettifogging vindictiveness, Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor George Osborne are busy meekly agreeing with the tenor of his argument: that international tax avoidance really is the most terrible thing and that more needs to be done to stamp it out.
Well they’ve got no choice, have they? Both are very rich men who’ve spent their entire political careers assiduously pretending not to be rich in order not to stoke the resentment of the proles.
Read the rest at Breitbart.