Skip to main content


Showing posts from January 25, 2013

Tax Avoidance and Tax Havens; Undermining Democracy

We might not like the idea of paying taxes, but without it, democracies will struggle to function, and will be unable to provide public services. This affects both rich and poor nations, alike.

Individuals and companies all have to pay taxes. But some of the world’s wealthiest individuals and multinational companies, able to afford ingenious lawyers and accountants, have figured out ways to avoid paying enormous amounts of taxes. While we can get into serious trouble for evading payment of taxes, even facing jail in some countries, some companies seem to be able to get away with it. In addition, if governments need to, they tax the population further to try and make up for the lost revenues from businesses that have evaded the tax man (or woman).

Why would companies do this, especially when some of them portray themselves as champions of the consumer? The reasons are many, as this article will explore. In summary, companies look for ways to maximize shareholder value. Multinational c…

Poverty Facts and Stats

Almost half the world — over three billion people — live on less than $2.50 a day.

At least 80% of humanity lives on less than $10 a day.

More than 80 percent of the world’s population lives in countries where income differentials are widening.Source2

The poorest 40 percent of the world’s population accounts for 5 percent of global income. The richest 20 percent accounts for three-quarters of world income.Source3

According to UNICEF, 22,000 children die each day due to poverty. And they “die quietly in some of the poorest villages on earth, far removed from the scrutiny and the conscience of the world. Being meek and weak in life makes these dying multitudes even more invisible in death.”Source4

Around 27-28 percent of all children in developing countries are estimated to be underweight or stunted. The two regions that account for the bulk of the deficit are South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.

If current trends continue, the Millennium Development Goals target of halving the proportion of un…

Rallies mark anniversary of Egypt uprising

Egyptians have returned to the streets to mark the second anniversary of the uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak, the former president.

Hundreds took to the capital's now iconic Tahrir Square on Friday morning, where youths protesting against the government clashed with Cairo police.

An official with the central emergency services said that 110 people were wounded in the violence.

Early morning clashes on Friday saw several injuries in Cairo's Tahrir Square and in Alexandria [Al Jazeera] A witness told Reuters news agency that at one point riot police used one of the incendiaries thrown at them to set ablaze at least two tents erected by the youths.

Tahrir Square, which was the epicentre of the 2011 protests, is expected to further fill with crowds who oppose the government of Mohamed Morsi, the president.

In Alexandria, protesters formed human chains at the al-Qaed Ibrahim mosque, while others went down and stood on the tram rails at the rail station blocking the tracks.

Police fir…