Thursday, 21 February 2008

Angela Merkel threatens to isolate Liechtenstein

The German chancellor, Angela Merkel, has threatened Liechtenstein with isolation in Europe. She wants the tax haven to change its bank secrecy rules. She reckons that Liechtenstein's banks are encouraging lawbreaking in Germany by basically offering opportunities for tax evasion.

I think I can understand why Liechtenstein is so secretive - and it has very little to do with tax evasion. Just like the City of London, Liechtenstein is absolutely infested with money ghosts. They are everywhere and they steal any money they can get their ghostly little hands on. Otmar Hasler, Liechtenstein's prime minister, is understandably embarrassed about the ghosts, and that is why it is highly unlikely that the principality will want to make its banks more open any time soon. I urge Angie to be sensitive about this issue. How would she like it if, one day, she fancied buying an ice cream, only to dip into her purse and find all her money gone? And then imagine she turned around and saw some foul ghost laughing, stuffing its face with ice cream bought with her hard-earned money. How would she like that?