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  #121  
Old 17.05.2013, 22:56
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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Possibly not, but the "official" figure is full of errors, omissions, and doubling up of names so how accurate it is, is anyone's guess.
Absolutely true.

As for the green cards and new citizenships in the US, there are plenty of _________ that want to be accepted into the club. (fill in the blank)

It is common knowledge that any statistic provided by any official office of the US can not be trusted as accurate.
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  #122  
Old 18.05.2013, 10:46
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

I would guess that such a large percentage are from Switzerland because it's one of the few places in the world where you can end up paying taxes to the US (because Swiss taxes are lower). I have American friends living in higher tax countries so they never owe any US taxes. They couldn't care less about this.

Dan
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  #123  
Old 18.05.2013, 11:11
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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I would guess that such a large percentage are from Switzerland because it's one of the few places in the world where you can end up paying taxes to the US (because Swiss taxes are lower). I have American friends living in higher tax countries so they never owe any US taxes. They couldn't care less about this.

Dan
a large percentage also tend to be "unintentional" citizens (they were born in the US to expat parents from elsewhere) or they naturalized in the US before returning to their home country without considering the tax implications. which is all fine, except that the decision tree for a UK citizen living in Switzerland who was born in the US, left at a young age and hasn't set foot on US soil in several decades is probably somewhat different than someone who was born a US citizen to American parents and who does not otherwise carry dual citizenship.

having just finalized my tax return for the first year we lived in Switzerland, I can tell you that the noise about taxes on income for US citizens living abroad is just that - noise. the only reason I owed any income tax for that year in the US is because we moved during the middle of the year, otherwise my US tax burden would have been less than what it will cost to pay a cleaning crew to clean our house for the landlord before we move.
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  #124  
Old 19.05.2013, 07:14
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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I would guess that such a large percentage are from Switzerland because it's one of the few places in the world where you can end up paying taxes to the US (because Swiss taxes are lower). I have American friends living in higher tax countries so they never owe any US taxes. They couldn't care less about this.

Dan
Too many Americans seem to be heavily addicted to this tax nonsense. For some Americans, it's all about the taxes! Idiots.

Were those American friends kicked of banks because of their US citizenship and due to American policy? Nope, so stop moaning about taxes. Seriously, Americans, there is much more to life than just taxes! Try to think of other things, ok? I mean, is there not a single American who is smart enough to realize that not everyone in Switzerland earns more than $150'000?
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  #125  
Old 19.05.2013, 07:20
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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in 2011, there were about 1,700 renunciations, something north of 650,000 persons choosing to naturalize in the US and a net migration ratio north of 4 per 1,000 persons. somehow I don't suspect the country is losing sleep about running out of paying customers.

This is an excellent argument to abolish the exit tax and to stop charging a $450 renunciation fee. Many Americans are obviously excited when American heritage is replaced with fresh wahhabi immigrants or such. What ever happened to American patriotism? Normally, the focus should be on protecting Americans and American interests instead of making life more difficult for the unemployed, expats and everyone else with large inflows of immigrants. Is it too much to ask for a fellow American to stand up for a fellow citizen abroad?

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  #126  
Old 19.05.2013, 10:31
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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Too many Americans seem to be heavily addicted to this tax nonsense. For some Americans, it's all about the taxes! Idiots.

Were those American friends kicked of banks because of their US citizenship and due to American policy? Nope, so stop moaning about taxes. Seriously, Americans, there is much more to life than just taxes! Try to think of other things, ok? I mean, is there not a single American who is smart enough to realize that not everyone in Switzerland earns more than $150'000?
For sure. The other point is that probably a lot of those expat Americans don't make enough money for it to matter. So they don't care.

Dan
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  #127  
Old 19.05.2013, 10:33
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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Too many Americans seem to be heavily addicted to this tax nonsense. For some Americans, it's all about the taxes! Idiots.

Were those American friends kicked of banks because of their US citizenship and due to American policy? Nope, so stop moaning about taxes. Seriously, Americans, there is much more to life than just taxes! Try to think of other things, ok? I mean, is there not a single American who is smart enough to realize that not everyone in Switzerland earns more than $150'000?

Shall the Americans put thinkers like you into a drawer like you do them? Please don't stereotype.

Obviously you had not read the articles jrspet offered in the OP. Yes, "Americans are being kicked out of bans because of their American citizenship and due to American policy". It is true and current events - don't you read the EF?

Of course the majority of the US folk here in Switzerland don't earn that much... but the media-orientated American public think so. I invite you to read the OP articles and the comments below them.

The Americans here do have a life, their mission in life is not to avoid taxes or pay as little as possible.

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This is an excellent argument to abolish the exit tax and to stop charging a $450 renunciation fee. Many Americans are obviously excited when American heritage is replaced with fresh wahhabi immigrants or such. What ever happened to American patriotism? Normally, the focus should be on protecting Americans and American interests instead of making life more difficult for the unemployed, expats and everyone else with large inflows of immigrants. Is it too much to ask for a fellow American to stand up for a fellow citizen abroad?
American patriotism is going away with every step the government takes to abolish the Constitution.

On top of that, the US will never do away with the $450.- fee. That is their last chance to juice the expat before watching them fade off in the sunset.

You are asking for not only the mole hill, but also the mountain. Americans in the US groan at all ex-citizens... without the slightest idea or recognition of the individual's interest and reasons for following through with the renunciation.
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  #128  
Old 19.05.2013, 10:33
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

For the past 50 years or so, citizenship-based taxation has changed little for Americans abroad. Yet, suddenly, since around 2010, renunciation figures have greatly increased. How can such an increase be there result of taxes due when taxes remained relatively unchanged and didn't apply to most? All logic and common sense suggests that the problem is not the act of paying taxes, but rather something else, such as problems caused by a bad policy.
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  #129  
Old 19.05.2013, 10:45
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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For the past 50 years or so, citizenship-based taxation has changed little for Americans abroad. Yet, suddenly, since around 2010, renunciation figures have greatly increased. How can such an increase be there result of taxes due when taxes remained relatively unchanged and didn't apply to most? All logic and common sense suggests that the problem is not the act of paying taxes, but rather something else, such as problems caused by a bad policy.
Look at the big picture SP:

Americans abroad are discriminated against from their own government.

Americans abroad are forced to allow the IRS to view their account status - any time.

The banks that serve Americans abroad are forced to report or tattle-tale on their American account holders.

Americans abroad are the target of double taxation on their income

Americans abroad have been chosen as a money source to finance high dollar US projects (Obamacare).

Americans abroad that renounce have been threatened with denial to entry in the US.

Americans abroad that renounce have been threatened to be tagged for "special treatment" at the border (not good special treatment).

How many facts and future considerations do you need to be convinced that the Americans abroad are treated different than 10, 20 or 30 years ago?

Americans abroad are not living outside the US for reasons of taxes - but they are given that tag from the media and stateside folk. It is not a matter of not paying taxes - rather being treated as a convict without having committed a crime.
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  #130  
Old 19.05.2013, 10:46
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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Shall the Americans put thinkers like you into a drawer like you do them? Please don't stereotype.

Obviously you had not read the articles jrspet offered in the OP. Yes, "Americans are being kicked out of bans because of their American citizenship and due to American policy". It is true and current events - don't you read the EF?

Of course the majority of the US folk here in Switzerland don't earn that much... but the media-orientated American public think so. I invite you to read the OP articles and the comments below them.

The Americans here do have a life, their mission in life is not to avoid taxes or pay as little as possible.



American patriotism is going away with every step the government takes to abolish the Constitution.

On top of that, the US will never do away with the $450.- fee. That is their last chance to juice the expat before watching them fade off in the sunset.

You are asking for not only the mole hill, but also the mountain. Americans in the US groan at all ex-citizens... without the slightest idea or recognition of the individual's interest and reasons for following through with the renunciation.
Not only did I read the articles, but I communicated with Bill Hinchberger when he was writing his and I believe that Anita Greil has me jotted down as a potential candidate for future articles. But, of course, they do not have a shortage of individuals to write about.

While my stereotype certainly doesn't apply to all Americans, many more stateside Americans could do a much better job of demonstrating that they recognize that life is not limited to taxes. All of this mindless tax-chatter is really pointless.
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  #131  
Old 19.05.2013, 10:58
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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Look at the big picture SP:

Americans abroad are discriminated against from their own government.

Americans abroad are forced to allow the IRS to view their account status - any time.

The banks that serve Americans abroad are forced to report or tattle-tale on their American account holders.

Americans abroad are the target of double taxation on their income

Americans abroad have been chosen as a money source to finance high dollar US projects (Obamacare).

Americans abroad that renounce have been threatened with denial to entry in the US.

Americans abroad that renounce have been threatened to be tagged for "special treatment" at the border (not good special treatment).

How many facts and future considerations do you need to be convinced that the Americans abroad are treated different than 10, 20 or 30 years ago?

Americans abroad are not living outside the US for reasons of taxes - but they are given that tag from the media and stateside folk. It is not a matter of not paying taxes - rather being treated as a convict without having committed a crime.
This is my point. While US taxes due have changed little or not at all for most expats, regardless of regionality, many other issues have changed. As such, it is idiotic to argue that taxes are the main cause of most renunciations.
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  #132  
Old 19.05.2013, 11:06
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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While my stereotype certainly doesn't apply to all Americans, many more stateside Americans could do a much better job of demonstrating that they recognize that life is not limited to taxes. All of this mindless tax-chatter is really pointless.
Yes please don't stereotype. I have Swiss colleagues who have their residence in some of the extra low tax Gemeindes here, making much more than 150k, who brag to me about how their brother is also "living" there (wink wink) but I don't stereotype all Swiss people based on that.

Dan
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  #133  
Old 19.05.2013, 11:07
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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This is my point. While US taxes due have changed little or not at all for most expats, regardless of regionality, many other issues have changed. As such, it is idiotic to argue that taxes are the main cause of most renunciations.
In my book, the majority listed has to do with the IRS/Government. Maybe I did wrong by putting them into one drawer marked "Taxes" ... but still, life for an American abroad has gotten difficult (to say the least) over the past 10 years.

If an American was forced to prove the renunciation is not for the reason of avoiding taxes... that would be very difficult.
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  #134  
Old 19.05.2013, 11:17
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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In my book, the majority listed has to do with the IRS/Government. Maybe I did wrong by putting them into one drawer marked "Taxes" ... but still, life for an American abroad has gotten difficult (to say the least) over the past 10 years.

If an American was forced to prove the renunciation is not for the reason of avoiding taxes... that would be very difficult.
It depends. If a person renounced, in response to national origin discrimination (bank account), while never having taxes due as a US expat, then it wouldn't make any sense to accuse them of avoiding taxes when they owed nothing. Yet, for those with an income of around 150k or greater, you are right that the US government could invent some stupid excuse to punish them if it wanted to.
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  #135  
Old 19.05.2013, 11:18
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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For the past 50 years or so, citizenship-based taxation has changed little for Americans abroad. Yet, suddenly, since around 2010, renunciation figures have greatly increased. How can such an increase be there result of taxes due when taxes remained relatively unchanged and didn't apply to most? All logic and common sense suggests that the problem is not the act of paying taxes, but rather something else, such as problems caused by a bad policy.
the only thing that changed was that the US government enacted legislation that compels foreign financial institutions having US customers to disclose information about the financial affairs of those US customers. which is actually much ado about nothing, since those US customers already had an obligation to disclose much of the relevant information anyway.

I realize that it will be unpopular to say so, but there are really only 2 kinds of US citizens who are most upset about the new situation - (1) those who are US citizens but never realized that a US citizen living abroad still has to file a US tax return and pay US taxes (although that tax burden only exists if taxes were not already paid to a foreign jurisdiction), and (2) those who have been circumventing the US tax code in the past and recognize that the new disclosure obligations impair their ability to do so in the future. yes, there are citizens of other countries who view the US legislation as another attempt by the US to exert extra-territorial jurisdiction (which of course it is so I am sympathetic to those complaints), and yes, there are US citizens who view it as simply being more paperwork (which again it is and I am particularly sensitive to those complaints), but for the most part the landscape has not changed at all for the typical law-abiding US citizen.

if a US citizen is upset at having to continue to pay US tax while living abroad, I certainly understand that and those having the flexibility to renounce should certainly be free to do so. but let's be honest about the reasons for the renunciation, which have nothing whatsoever to do with anything new but rather to do with a situation that has existed for several decades.
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  #136  
Old 19.05.2013, 11:22
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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Yes please don't stereotype. I have Swiss colleagues who have their residence in some of the extra low tax Gemeindes here, making much more than 150k, who brag to me about how their brother is also "living" there (wink wink) but I don't stereotype all Swiss people based on that.

Dan
What's wrong with being happy about being lucky enough to live in a region with high living costs and low taxes? If America paid 50% of their living expenses, then I suppose that it would not be very polite if they bragged about paying less in taxes while America paid their fees. Yet, for as long as America contributes nothing to the infrastructure that they use, then they have every right to benefit from their situation and brag about it.
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Old 19.05.2013, 11:24
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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Americans abroad that renounce have been threatened with denial to entry in the US.
once a person renounces their citizenship, they are treated the same as any other foreigner, the same as I am treated differently by the Swiss authorities and by the border authorities of every country I enter other than the US. I honestly don't see the problem here.
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  #138  
Old 19.05.2013, 11:30
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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the only thing that changed was that the US government enacted legislation that compels foreign financial institutions having US customers to disclose information about the financial affairs of those US customers. which is actually much ado about nothing, since those US customers already had an obligation to disclose much of the relevant information anyway.

I realize that it will be unpopular to say so, but there are really only 2 kinds of US citizens who are most upset about the new situation - (1) those who are US citizens but never realized that a US citizen living abroad still has to file a US tax return and pay US taxes (although that tax burden only exists if taxes were not already paid to a foreign jurisdiction), and (2) those who have been circumventing the US tax code in the past and recognize that the new disclosure obligations impair their ability to do so in the future. yes, there are citizens of other countries who view the US legislation as another attempt by the US to exert extra-territorial jurisdiction (which of course it is so I am sympathetic to those complaints), and yes, there are US citizens who view it as simply being more paperwork (which again it is and I am particularly sensitive to those complaints), but for the most part the landscape has not changed at all for the typical law-abiding US citizen.

if a US citizen is upset at having to continue to pay US tax while living abroad, I certainly understand that and those having the flexibility to renounce should certainly be free to do so. but let's be honest about the reasons for the renunciation, which have nothing whatsoever to do with anything new but rather to do with a situation that has existed for several decades.
Situations (1) and (2) do not apply to me. I was fine with free-filing (under the condition that it became more expat-friendly), had no issue with the US government being informed about my financial situation and was willing to pay US taxes to reduce the national debt.

Yet, when I learned that all of my banks rejected US clients and that the US government was unwilling to help, I found such to be unacceptable and renounced. Based upon your argument, I should have renounced 20 years ago, yet it was only last year that this became an issue.
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  #139  
Old 19.05.2013, 11:40
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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Friend and business colleague of Mark, former EF moderator Scott took a major step in 2012. After receiving his Swiss citizenship, he immediately turned around and within a few days took the
thanks for posting this!

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Obama and his clowns will be in for a big surprise when they find ....
/groan

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Too many Americans seem to be heavily addicted to this tax nonsense. For some Americans, it's all about the taxes! Idiots.

Were those American friends kicked of banks because of their US citizenship and due to American policy? Nope, so stop moaning about taxes. Seriously, Americans, there is much more to life than just taxes! Try to think of other things, ok? I mean, is there not a single American who is smart enough to realize that not everyone in Switzerland earns more than $150'000?
I was hoping to read some common sense in your posts on this subject, but ... well.... the best you came up with was calling us "Idiots"

It is such a burden for a US citizen to do taxes living outside the US? First, the paperwork itself is four times greater, the tax codes/laws are a LOT more complicated, and in most cases, without an accountant, one cannot do them properly, which leads to more problems.

To add to the facts... As a US citizen, if I am on US soil for more than 30 days in a calendar year (which includes an embassy btw, I cannot claim what is called the foreign earned income tax credit (which I am sure many of you already know). So, I am not even allowed in my country for more than 30 days without be penalized for having done so. As an EU citizen for example, you can travel to the US for 60 (or is it 90?) days without a question. So, lets remind the US citizen, who doesn't live there, doesn't take advantage of the benefits of living there, that they WILL go through a really hard time every year to do their taxes, and we are watching them very closely to ensure that they are not getting over on us.



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For the past 50 years or so, citizenship-based taxation has changed little for Americans abroad. Yet, suddenly, since around 2010, renunciation figures have greatly increased. How can such an increase be there result of taxes due when taxes remained relatively unchanged and didn't apply to most? All logic and common sense suggests that the problem is not the act of paying taxes, but rather something else, such as problems caused by a bad policy.
Ahhh... finally you may be making a bit of sense. Yes, the policy's are the worst, and there is also a threat that comes up more and more often to remove the foreign earned income tax credit. That will kill most people working outside the US as the amount of taxes having to be paid will be crazy ridiculous. Yes, one can argue, living in some countries the taxes are very high, but, that is "living" in that country, reaping such rewards, etc.

--

For what it's worth, I cannot wait for the day to take my blue passport straight to the garbage. I love the US, and have family there of course, but, the quality of life (at least in the places I have lived) are terrible compared to here. I would like to spend the rest of my life enjoying it and I believe I have a much better chance here, than there.
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Old 19.05.2013, 11:49
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Re: Giving up the blue passport because of FATCA - one member's experience

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What's wrong with being happy about being lucky enough to live in a region with high living costs and low taxes? If America paid 50% of their living expenses, then I suppose that it would not be very polite if they bragged about paying less in taxes while America paid their fees. Yet, for as long as America contributes nothing to the infrastructure that they use, then they have every right to benefit from their situation and brag about it.
You must be reading a different thread or someone else's posts but yet responding to mine? I said stereotyping is wrong, nothing else. Sounds like you are now "stereotyping" me and assuming that I have certain opinions that I have never stated.

If you don't like Americans whining about taxes, stop reading EF threads about American taxes. Most of the Americans I know aren't on EF, and, we never talk about taxes.

Dan
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