Lee Kun-hee will return to head up Samsung Electronics, having resigned from the company in 2008 with a conviction for tax evasion - for which he's since been pardoned. Lee Kun-hee won't be taking on all his previous responsibilities, just the Electronics part of the Samsung group and alongside a board of which he won't be chair …
I hate this bias against white collar crime...
You see it so often these days that white collar crime gets treated so softly as opposed to blue collar crime. But tell me between a person with little educations who breaks into a house and steals your television vs someone like Lee Kun-hee who cheats the government (and thus society) out of millions. Who causes the most damage in society? Whos to say that the money that Lee Kun-hee robbed the government of wouldnt have been used to improve the education and job gaining abilities of Mr TV Thief?
Courts need to start taking white collar crime more seriously. Tell me who knows whats right and wrong under the law better - someone who grew up on the street or someone who grew up with a silver spoon?
Did you read the article?
If not, let me quote the salient point "...for which he's since been pardoned.".
Besides, from a purely moral perspective, tax evasion is not theft but the avoidance of theft (well, avoidance of having money demanded with menaces actually).
Even if you agree to taxation in principle I'd love you to point out a government that isn't corrupt self-serving and guilty of its own embezzlement.
And when was the last time...
... you heard of Mr TV Thief being pardoned? Or come to think of it, when was the last time you heard of ANY blue collar criminal being pardoned?
The fact remains that governments and judiciary's around the world fail to take white collar crime seriously despite the fact that it has the potential to destroy entire economies and livelihoods.
And im sorry but your arguments are completly childish! Do you honestly believe that no one should pay taxes? Then i will happily sign a petition to allow you not to pay taxes if you promise to a) never drive a car (because taxes pay for the roads it will drive on and in too many cases pay for the bailing out of the car manufacturer when they get into debt), b) never use any sort of hospital (public or private because tax dollars go to both), c) never send your children to school/university for an education, or d) use any service or product which has received any government funding (so you shouldnt be using the internet because that was developed by CERN which is a government funded scientifc organisation).
You can argue whether taxes are too high, or whether there used efficiently but ive never found any sane person who thinks nobody should pay taxes.
Your second point, that because governments are unlikely to use your money wisely you shouldnt have to pay your taxes is incredibly disingeneous, and basically says because someone doesnt use something in the way you think is right, then they shouldnt have it, no? Well i dont think my next door neighbour uses there 60" plasma correctly either (they watch big brother!) so i think i should take it because they're not using it correctly. Preposterous idea, no? Well thats what your proposing.
Two wrongs do not make a right...
And i stand by my point, that white collar criminals are allowed far too much leeway in our current system. Someone who is highly educated should be sentenced far more harshly when they perform a premeditated crime (like tax evasion or embezzelment) because they KNOW what they are doing is wrong then someone from a less educated background.
What about if it is YOUR TV?
To the ordinary person Tax Evasion is not as bad as having your own posessions stolen.
Tell that to the millions who lost there savings in Madoff's (and other) Ponsi schemes? Or in the various financial crashes of the last few years...
If it was my TV - your right i would want the crook put behind bars for a few years. However, if it was my life savings destroyed by some white collar embezzlement i would want the crook put away for a dozen years! (Good to see the US gave Madoff 150 years - seems appropriate for US$50 billion embezzled!).
In this particular case, why did Hun-lee need to be pardoned? Ok if he had paid the money off, he should still have had to serve his time and then had to deal with forever having to have a criminal record because he DID break the law. A pardon effectively removes any details that you have committed a crime in the past. So legally speaking he's as clean as a new born lamb when we all know he's been as dirty as a pig in shit.
Continuing with my Mr TV Thief analogy. By the same token, if Mr TV Thief pays me back the cost of the TV (and broken window, etc) he should be allowed to have a pardon, not serve his time and have a squeaky clean record too shouldnt he?
It's all about impact
Agreed - psychologically the impact of having your house broken into and your TV stolen is far worse than hearing on the news that some dude was evading taxes. It can be absolutely devastating to your confidence and ability to feel secure in your own home (I'm lucky enough to have never had it happen to me but I know people who are less fortunate).
I agree that in this case the treatment of the guy has been a bit of a joke but the OP shouldn't overlook the impact on wider-society of people being in fear in their own homes (or, to go a step further) on the streets.
To put it another way, if you offered people a choice between a world without burglars and muggers or white collar fraudsters of the type in this article, what do you think most people would plump for?
Tax is still robbery.
It may have its good points, hell it may even make for a better society if actually implemented correctly -- but it is still robbery.
Most people would manage quite alright just paying for what they use -- so for most people taxes are a drain.
Oh, and if I gave someone a TV so they could watch it and they used it as coffee table then I'd feel justified in either demanding it back or, at the least, not giving them anything else.
Shoot the rich.
Let the poor have some BBQ.
All right, i admit it! It's a joke in terrible taste. (Ow! Stop that!)
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