Most people regard tax havens as being relevant only to celebrities, crooks and spivs, and mistakenly believe that the main offshore problems are money laundering and terrorist financing. These are only small parts of the whole picture. The offshore system has been (discreetly) responsible for the greatest-ever shift of wealth from poor to rich. It also undermines our democracies by offering the wealthiest members of society escape routes from tax, financial regulation, and other normal democratic controls.
Treasure Islands brilliantly articulates the problem in a completely new way, and exposes the deep corruption that impacts on our daily lives. This is the ugliest chapter in global economic affairs since slavery - and secretive offshore tax havens are at the heart of the trouble.
©2011 Nicholas Shaxson (P)2011 Audible Ltd
"Shaxson combines meticulous research with amusing anecdotes, resulting in a very readable account of the murky world of offshore and a strong moral message that the system needs to be changed." (Financial Times)
"Perhaps the most important book published in the UK so far this year." (George Mombiot, The Guardian)
"At last, a readable - indeed gripping - book which explains the nuts and bolts of tax havens. More importantly, it lays bare the mechanism that financial capital has been using to stay in charge: capturing government policy-making around the world, shaking off such irritants as democracy and the rule of law, and making sure that suckers like you and me pay for its operators' opulent lifestyles." (Misha Glenny, author of McMafia)
"Controversial and interesting"
This was a really edifying book to listen to in order to put in context many of the current news stories around corporation tax and financial regulation. However, towards the end of the book I found it a huge struggle to maintain my attention, and I have still not quite completed it. This may be because the book takes a historical tone, and as it approaches the present I find it surprising that I have yet to find anything identifiable in it. Well, I have some long car journeys ahead so perhaps I'll reach the end....eventually.
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