FATF: OECD mission-creep & Piper of Hamelin bureaucratic lawmaking

(url: www.solami.com/oecdmandate.htm) - According to the Swiss Bankers Association press release of 29 April 2005, "Switzerland's plans to implement the FATF's revised recommendations go too far and they need to be reworked by financial professionals with practical experience." For The Economist though, mere corner cutting wont wash in light of the FATF's all-around failures & costs. It concluded: "...to curb terrorism by stopping the flows of money that sustain it, must be judged a failure. Complex and unwieldy regulations have been imposed, but are not working, indeed arguably were always misguided. They should be scrapped and resources concentrated more productively elsewhere." (see also: "Turf Wars Hinder U.S. Attack on Terror Cash, Agency Says", New York Times, 29.11.05). And if the even more fundamental question of why & on what basis is asked, the same answer becomes even more urgent. Following is the FATF's background & an outline of how best to stop this buraucratic wildcat train which is causing a universally harmful compliance pandemic.

    Dedicated to the market economy & to "the preservation of idividual liberty",  the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development OECD, is "to reduce or abolish obstacles to the exchange of goods and services and current payments and maintain and extend the liberalisation of capital movements" (art.2, Convention). As pointed out earlier (.../hijack.htm), the OECD has evolved from a pro-market institution to an anti-competition, anti-sovereignty & anti-privacy instrument in the hands of unelected bureaucrats. Under US influence, though, its Council of Ministers, in 1971, explicitly prohibited it to engage in any work directed at social & economic engineering (i.e. in "work on the use of fiscal policy for demand management purposes", Res.C(71)41, §2). Yet ever since 1977, the secretive OECD Fiscal Committee & its Working Party #8 on Tax Avoidance and Evasion (WP8) have found themselves able & willing to pursue their self-fabricated mandate for "combating tax avoidance" (Res.C(77)149(Final)). Moreover, the WP8's French name is: "Group de travail sur líévasion et la fraude fiscale". This is no accident. All related OECD publications in fact contain misrepresentations, i.e. "tax avoidance and evasion" is always translated into "évasion et fraude fiscale", thus persistently & self-servingly sowing confusion & pretexts for liberty-eroding initiatives & witchhunts.
    These, then, have been the hidden forces & methods behind the long-standing efforts at OECD, the UN and at the EU in Brussels to "harmonize" the tax regimes in the industrialized world.  This is being done by fighting such cleverly made-believe dangers as "harmful tax competition", by both fabricating & seeking to enforce new global taxes and anti-money laundering standards, and by deliberately confusing illicit activities with the very linchpin of entrepreneurial activities & the market system, i.e. tax avoidance.
    All of which calls into question the fiscal arm of the OECD - including the Financial Action Task Force FATF which was hastily set up in 1989 in the wake of the OECD's defeat on its project for an Orwellian INTERFIPOL (Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters). For in the case of the FATF in particular, we are not only faced with an uncontrolled, costly & ill-founded OECD outgrowth with its more than questionable aims, means & effects, as even The Economist found out belatedly (22-88 Oct. 2005). But it consists mostly of self-appointed, myopic & mutually back-scratching international taxmen causing significant damage to the world's productive forces & financial community, not least in the form of a compliance pandemic (see the self-fabricated "remit", i.e. mandate substitute?!, of the "beautifully dressed" but in fact naked Emperor). For the loosers of the INTERFIPOL battle, without a legal basis, initially had formulated 40 primarily self-serving recommendations on anti-money laundering measures reaching far beyond the original domain of drug crimes. And when they met no resistence, they extended their "remit" to mere civil "offenses that generate a significant amount of proceeds", shedding even the pretence of drug or other serious crimes (ATF IA.188/2005). This train of particularly harmful and objectionable aberrations of international bureaucratic lawmaking can and needs to be stopped in its track - lest it further inspire other international bodies in search for work & taxpayer money, and who have yet to be made appreciative of the true costs of the administrative hassles they cause!

Ergo: replace FATF & other bureaucratic lawmakings with self-regulatory measures!
1.  by encouraging US lawmakers to suspend the $70m/y US contribution to the OECD budget until the OECD will have stopped, retracted & corrected all work, links & support which are not in line with the OCED's original intent & purpose and its Convention (notably its Fiscal Committee's mandate, its false translations of "tax avoidance", and its WG8's fixture on tax avoidance, harmonization & competition), and until the FATF will either have acquired treaty status with effects limited to members, or be shut down;
2.  by arming US & other, notably EU & Swiss lawmakers with arguments & briefs for related work;
3.  by networking and publication of corresponding contributions in suitable journals;
4.  by promoting and participating in suitable professional meetings, i.e. the Oxford and the Cambridge International Symposium on Economic Crime; and
5.  by denying FATF official recognition and build-up (e.g. by replacing ambassador with observer).