Panama, Paper, Money, Rage

In what will probably be the biggest corruption story of the year (and conceivably the biggest global story of the year) the Panama Papers leaked 11.5 million documents providing information about more than 214,000 offshore companies listed by Mossack Fonesca (for a helpful overview of what was revealed and who it impacts, check out this article from the economist.)

But what are we supposed to do with this information, other than sigh, roll our eyes, and despair at the state of our global economics? How do the revelations fit into the work we do at Dwight Hall, and what could we take from it in our continuing pursuit of social justice? Well, here are some articles that helped me get the processing ball rolling (from, of course, my own bias) – I hope they help you too.

The Panama Papers Could Lead To Capitalism’s Great CrisisRana Foroohar (Time Magazine) argues that global tax evasion is one of the key issues at work in the U.S. election, and that the Panama Papers will be a stepping stone towards a re-evaluation of free trade and our market system: “the populist backlash will be intense and will impact everything”.

Q&A: Julian Assange On The Panama Papers‘The Listening Post’ at AlJazeera interviews Julian Assange, editor-in-chief of WikiLeaks, about secrets, leaks, and why all 11.5 million files should be published: “it’s going to be very hard to get reform without a bulk publishing effort”.

The Panama Papers Prove It: America Can Afford A Universal Basic IncomeColin Holtz (Guardian) argues that Universal Basic Income wouldn’t be the pipe dream it appears if tax evasion could be brought to an end: “some may disagree with the notion of an unconditional tax grant, or object to it going to everyone. Just don’t say we can’t afford it.”

Explaining The Panama Papers, Or, Why Does A Dog Lick Himself?Slavoj Zizek (Newsweek) considers the positive solidarity provoked by the global tax leaks, as well as the problematic absence of the United States on the list: “corruption is not a contingent deviation of the global capitalist system, it is part of its basic functioning”.

Thoughts or articles you’d like to share? Get in touch!

Hannah Malcolm (M.A.R. World Christianities), Rev John Magee Fellow, Dwight Hall

Publication Date: 
Saturday, April 9, 2016

For more stories, check out the Voices and Stories Archive page.