The German government just bribed an employee of a foreign bank to steal details of German account holders. That’s an example of the end (catching tax evaders) justifying the means (theft). The last time Germans used that principle they went on to kill about 40 million people.
Liechtenstein accused Germany yesterday of attacking its sovereignty after Berlin admitted using spies to investigate tax fraud in the principality.
Crown Prince Alois launched his withering tirade after it emerged that German undercover investigators paid up to £3.75 million for bank details of Germans suspected of tax-fraud in the nearby state.
Evading (as opposed to avoiding) tax is a crime, but state sanctioned theft makes state employees and elected officials crooks too.
The level of tax evasion in a nation is a funtion of a) the level of taxes and b) the value taxpayers assign to that taxation. Danes we know happily pay high taxes in return for good social services, whereas no Brits we know think they get value for their taxes.
Germans seem to have the Brit attitude, leading to a poisonous combination – taxpayers who crookedly hide their incomes, governed by crooked pols and officials.
Here’s the last bunch of crooks that ran Germany:
…Hitler’s efforts to persuade Oskar von Hindenburg (the President’s son) included threats to bring criminal charges over estate taxation irregularities at the President’s Neudeck estate (although 5000 extra acres were soon allotted to Hindenburg’s property)…
Hindenburg, despite his misgivings about the Nazis’ goals and about Hitler as a person, reluctantly agreed.. that, with Nazi popular support on the wane, Hitler could now be controlled as chancellor. The date dubbed Machtergreifung (seizure of power) by the Nazi propaganda is commonly seen as the beginning of Nazi Germany.
Fortunately, they don’t have nukes.