Letter: We Must Tackle White Collar Crime
“Tough on crime” says the politician, and what he really means is more cops on the go to stop street crimes like car theft, burglaries, vandalism, etc. It says little about white collar crime where the losses are far, far outweighing the losses from street crime. Losses due to fraud and embezzlement alone average over $ 800 billion annually.
White collar crime is mainly carried out by the rich and powerful because they have the opportunity, the penalties are minor and the profits are huge. The rich are mainly the top executives of big business and the wealthy elite, while the powerful are the members of Congress and elected / appointed officials of our government who write and pass the rules and regulations that control our activities.
White collar crime has been responsible for most of the disasters we have seen as a nation including the Great Depression, the Great Recession of 2008, the savings and loan scandal, the Enron mess and the list goes on. For more details, read “Big Dirty Money” by J. Taub. One example is our unfair tax codes with âdeferred interestâ provisions. Former President Trump promised to get rid of it during his campaign, but did nothing. The loophole is costing our government $ 2 billion in tax revenue from just the top 25 hedge fund managers. There are 3,000 to 5,000 of these managers in the United States. Other examples include capital gains, the mortgage interest deduction, and the Social Security cap, which favors all the rich.
Then we have the IRS, for which Congress continued to cut its budget, causing an 80% drop in the number of audits of the rich. This means a loss of about $ 750 billion in taxes.
We the people are in desperate need of a Congress and an administration that will correct this situation. It is said that Democrats in North Dakota need a platform to get elected. What better platform than a total effort to fight white collar crime?
Monroe Pederson lives in Hatton, ND
This letter does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Forum editorial board or the property of the Forum.