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» The Ornery American Forum » General Comments » Facebook Co-Founder Saverin Gives Up U.S. Citizenship Before IPO (Page 1)

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Author Topic: Facebook Co-Founder Saverin Gives Up U.S. Citizenship Before IPO
JWatts
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Not really too surprising all things considered.

quote:

Eduardo Saverin, the billionaire co- founder of Facebook Inc. (FB), renounced his U.S. citizenship before an initial public offering that values the social network at as much as $96 billion, a move that may reduce his tax bill.

Facebook plans to raise as much as $11.8 billion through the IPO, the biggest in history for an Internet company. Saverin’s stake is about 4 percent, according to the website Who Owns Facebook. At the high end of the IPO valuation, that would be worth about $3.84 billion. His holdings aren’t listed in Facebook’s regulatory filings.

Saverin, 30, joins a growing number of people giving up U.S. citizenship, a move that can trim their tax liabilities in that country. The Brazilian-born resident of Singapore is one of several people who helped Mark Zuckerberg start Facebook in a Harvard University dorm and stand to reap billions of dollars after the world’s largest social network holds its IPO.

“Eduardo recently found it more practical to become a resident of Singapore since he plans to live there for an indefinite period of time,” said Tom Goodman, a spokesman for Saverin, in an e-mailed statement.

Saverin’s name is on a list of people who chose to renounce citizenship as of April 30, published by the Internal Revenue Service. Saverin made that move “around September” of last year, according to his spokesman.

It may help him cut the tax bill stemming from his Facebook stake, and avoid capital gains taxes on his future investments. Singapore doesn’t have a capital gains tax.

Saverin won’t escape all U.S. taxes. Americans who give up their citizenship owe what is effectively an exit tax on the capital gains from their stock holdings, even if they don’t sell the shares, said Reuven S. Avi-Yonah, director of the international tax program at the University of Michigan’s law school. For tax purposes, the IRS treats the stock as if it has been sold.
...
Renouncing citizenship is an option chosen by increasing numbers of Americans. A record 1,780 gave up their U.S. passports last year compared with 235 in 2008, according to government records.

Income-tax rates for top U.S. earners will rise to 39.6 percent from 35 percent next year, and rates on capital gains and dividends also are scheduled to rise unless Congress blocks the increases.

“It’s a loss for the U.S. to have many well-educated people who actually have a great deal of affection for America make that choice,” said Richard Weisman, head of the global tax practice at Baker & McKenzie in Hong Kong. “The tax cost, complexity and the traps for the unwary are among the considerations.”

Bloomberg
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AI Wessex
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It used to be said that many people stopped to consider what they were missing in life when they earned their first $1M, and for some of them it turned out that it was the second $1M. I guess inflation has hit that old maxim right in the pocketbook...
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djquag1
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Guy lives in Singapore, was born in Brazil. So it's not quite the same as a lifelong citizen.

The point is obviously that he's leaving the country he made his billions in so he can pay a little less in taxes. Maybe. Which you're right, isn't too surprising, the world is full of assholes.

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PSRT
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You are right, JW. We need better laws that allow us to more effectively tax people and corporations who make money in the united stated, regardless of where their citizenship or place of residence is. That would discourage this sort of behavior.
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Pete at Home
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Good riddance. Can we send Newt Gingrich to Singapore too?
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Viking_Longship
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Hey didn't you watch The Social Network? We're supposed to feel sorry for this guy.
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cherrypoptart
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To turn a phrase, "The more the U.S. tightens its grip, the more taxpayers will slip through their fingers."

Many people are mad about this but it really makes me smile. Good for him! I'm not sure why so many people seem so sore about it. I honestly wish him all the best.

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Viking_Longship
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quote:
Originally posted by cherrypoptart:
To turn a phrase, "The more the U.S. tightens its grip, the more taxpayers will slip through their fingers."

Many people are mad about this but it really makes me smile. Good for him! I'm not sure why so many people seem so sore about it. I honestly wish him all the best.

We find ourselves in agreement 2 days in a row. That's got to be some kind of record.

Right now I'm presuming he's already paid more into the system than he has ever taken out. How much is he supposed to pay?

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LetterRip
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quote:
Right now I'm presuming he's already paid more into the system than he has ever taken out. How much is he supposed to pay?
The company facebook is based in huge part on infrastructure etc. developed with federal funds. The vast majority of the employees were trained with federal dollars.

It is also the beneficiary of enormous R&D spending by the federal government.

Ones economic benefit is largely proportional to ones usage of public infrastructure, and publicly educated employees.

A major point of taxes is to in part pay back part of the enormous public infrastructure that was needed to become successful in the first place.

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AI Wessex
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"Many people are mad about this but it really makes me smile. Good for him! I'm not sure why so many people seem so sore about it. I honestly wish him all the best."

The war on neuveau billionaires will decimate them and leave those with tens of billions of $$ with far less than they need or deservedly earned for their efforts. OTOH, I've worked for computer startups for many years and admit the reason to defer security and consistency is the thrill (overrated) and the dream of being hugely successful (rarely realized). But, billions?

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Pyrtolin
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It's no skin off our teeth, really. He's only taking some balance sheet numbers with him, which are pretty trivial to replace. Ultimately it translates to a lightly higher potential for exports either through his direct purchases or as a result of any currency exchanges that he needs to do to use his money locally, but either way he's not taking much in the way of any real infrastructure with him, so it's a complete non-event.
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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by cherrypoptart:
To turn a phrase, "The more the U.S. tightens its grip, the more taxpayers will slip through their fingers."

Many people are mad about this but it really makes me smile. Good for him! I'm not sure why so many people seem so sore about it. I honestly wish him all the best.

I'm not mad about what he did. I'm annoyed at stories that protray him as some sort of victim of the system. The lady in England who had to get a divorce because of double income taxation (real double, not rightspeak "double" as to Capital Gains tax [Roll Eyes] ) was a victim of an absurd system. This guy is simply gilding his own Lilly.
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LetterRip
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So presumably he lied under oath when he took the oath of citizenship initially. I wonder if any gains resultant from perjury could be forfeited.
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Viking_Longship
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quote:
Originally posted by LetterRip:
quote:
Right now I'm presuming he's already paid more into the system than he has ever taken out. How much is he supposed to pay?
The company facebook is based in huge part on infrastructure etc. developed with federal funds. The vast majority of the employees were trained with federal dollars.

It is also the beneficiary of enormous R&D spending by the federal government.

Ones economic benefit is largely proportional to ones usage of public infrastructure, and publicly educated employees.

A major point of taxes is to in part pay back part of the enormous public infrastructure that was needed to become successful in the first place.

When I say he's paid more into the system than he's personally taken out I'm taking all that into account.

He would have been taxed on the initial
settlement when he sued Zuckerberg.

His share of Facebook is only 4%.

He's been living in Singapore for about 3 years already.

His family was rich already when he got here and he was privately educated so I don't see how he was a tremendous drain on our system.

There's a sense of entitlement which people have about other people's money which is ingrained in our society people don't see it.

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philnotfil
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quote:
Originally posted by djquag1:
Guy lives in Singapore, was born in Brazil. So it's not quite the same as a lifelong citizen.

The point is obviously that he's leaving the country he made his billions in so he can pay a little less in taxes. Maybe. Which you're right, isn't too surprising, the world is full of assholes.

And he renounced his citizenship in September.

And he has been living in Singapore since 2009.

This smells like a manufactured story just to stir up outrage.

[ May 12, 2012, 01:37 PM: Message edited by: philnotfil ]

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LetterRip
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philnotfil,

if you check the citizenship requirements it appears that he was just planning ahead - ie having a rough idea of when the IPO would be and the citizenship requirements - those are the dates that he would have had to initiate actions to renounce his citizenship now.

(The IPO couldn't happen until certain accounting practices had occurred for two years plus a wait period and citizenship couldn't be acquired in Singapore till two years plus a wait period).

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philnotfil
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None of the numerous articles about this person changing his citizenship say why he is doing so.

They all offer speculation on why a Brazilian-born resident of Singapore would do so.

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Pete at Home
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As "co-founder" how much did this walking dildo actually do as opposed to funding with his tax-free dinero?
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lessismore
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How much money do the wealthy spend in order to pay the least amount of taxes they can?.

It would be ironic if the cost exceeded what they “save”

I guess it’s the reference point that matters, if their spending it, even on lawyers and such, it their money, the cost of business but taxes that’s giving money away and that’s just not American.

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AI Wessex
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I think they would spend any amount of money to hang onto at least $1 more than that [Wink] .
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cherrypoptart
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http://finance.yahoo.com/news/facebook-co-founder--america-is-ok--it%E2%80%99s-the-rules-that-are-a-pain.html

"Saverin spokesman Tom Goodman said Sunday his renunciation was prompted not by tax considerations but by U.S. rules that make it more difficult for U.S. citizens to live and invest overseas.

“U.S. citizens are severely restricted as to what they can invest in and where they can maintain accounts,” said spokesman Tom Goodman. “Many foreign funds and banks won’t accept Americans. This was a financial rather than a tax motive.”

It’s true many U.S. expats complain that American rules are making life more difficult for them. Those include the U.S. tax system’s global reach (many countries tax based on residency); foreign bank account reporting rules; and the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), which requires foreign financial institutions to start reporting to the IRS on U.S. citizens’ accounts.

Expats say as a result of all the regulations, some foreign banks are dumping more U.S. customers. Mr. Goodman also cited FATCA, among other rules, as a problem for Mr. Saverin."

-------------------------------------------

I seem to remember other former Americans saying the same thing recently which is why I fully support his renunciation. I'm for the wall keeping people from coming into the country illegally, not for Americans who wish to leave. For whatever reason.

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JWatts
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And the story goes on...

quote:

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., has a status update for Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin: Stop attempting to dodge your taxes by renouncing your U.S. citizenship or never come to back to the U.S. again.

In September 2011, Saverin relinquished his U.S. citizenship before the company announced its planned initial public offering of stock, which will debut this week. The move was likely a financial one, as he owns an estimated 4 percent of Facebook and stands to make $4 billion when the company goes public. Saverin would reap the benefit of tax savings by becoming a permanent resident of Singapore, which levies no capital gains taxes.

At a news conference this morning, Sens. Schumer and Bob Casey, D-Pa., will unveil the “Ex-PATRIOT” – “Expatriation Prevention by Abolishing Tax-Related Incentives for Offshore Tenancy” – Act to respond directly to Saverin’s move, which they dub a “scheme” that would “help him duck up to $67 million in taxes.”

The senators will call Saverin’s move an “outrage” and will outline their plan to re-impose taxes on expatriates like Saverin even after they flee the United States and take up residence in a foreign country. Their proposal would also impose a mandatory 30 percent tax on the capital gains of anybody who renounces their U.S. citizenship.

The plan would bar individuals like Saverin from ever reentering the United States again.

“Eduardo recently found it more practical to become a resident of Singapore since he plans to live there for an indefinite period of time,” Tom Goodman, Saverin’s spokesman, told Bloomberg News in an email.

Last year 1,700 people renounced their U.S. citizenship.

ABCNews
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Pyrtolin
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That's a dumb and completely useless response to what should be a non-issue.
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D.W.
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But it gets your name in the paper.
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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
That's a dumb and completely useless response to what should be a non-issue.

Why? My family was subject to horrid double expatriate taxation for decades as we lived in France, Mexico, Poland, and Shanghai. It was a terrible hardship. If we're going to hold onto such a grotesquely unjust law, why not close a loophole that allows the richest and least patriotic to escape?
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cherrypoptart
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It's funny seeing those for open borders and amnesty like Schumer drawing their line in the sand here, saying we don't want billionaires coming back to our country after our tax laws drove them away. It's also pretty interesting seeing this "wall" they want to build to keep people in. What happened? I thought we were supposed to be free and this was supposed to be the greatest nation on Earth?
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TomDavidson
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cherry, your straw men are getting increasingly amusing. I commend you. [Smile]
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
That's a dumb and completely useless response to what should be a non-issue.

Why? My family was subject to horrid double expatriate taxation for decades as we lived in France, Mexico, Poland, and Shanghai. It was a terrible hardship. If we're going to hold onto such a grotesquely unjust law, why not close a loophole that allows the richest and least patriotic to escape?
The right response to bad policies is to try to buttress them with stupid and useless policies? Why not fix the taxation issues instead, and not try to solve additional non-problems that arise from them? Let him go, and come as he likes; it's no skin off our teeth.

[ May 18, 2012, 10:44 AM: Message edited by: Pyrtolin ]

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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
cherry, your straw men are getting increasingly amusing. I commend you. [Smile]

This comment is ridiculous.

cherrypoptart's post was not a straw man argument. Clearly, there are people, such as Schumer, who do want to keep people in the country if them leaving means a potential loss of wealth. They are proposing a taxed based penalty system that would penalize anybody with substantial assets who wanted to permanently leave. It's not hyperbolic to refer to it as a 'wall' and it's clearly an additional infringement on our liberty.

Attempts to belittle opponents rather than address their arguments is juvenile.

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
That's a dumb and completely useless response to what should be a non-issue.

Why? My family was subject to horrid double expatriate taxation for decades as we lived in France, Mexico, Poland, and Shanghai. It was a terrible hardship. If we're going to hold onto such a grotesquely unjust law, why not close a loophole that allows the richest and least patriotic to escape?
The right response to bad policies is to try to buttress them with stupid and useless policies? Why not fix the taxation issues instead, and not try to solve additional non-problems that arise from them? Let him go, and come as he likes; it's no skin off our teeth.
Because it's been shown time and time again that the only way to get rid of hateful and oppressive policies which profit the government, is to enforce those hateful policies against the rich and powerful.
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Clearly, there are people, such as Schumer, who do want to keep people in the country if them leaving means a potential loss of wealth.
No real wealth is leaving with him. It's far more likely that this is pandering to wall street brokers who want to be able to profit from that money flowing into there exchanges rather than into foreign exchanges with a veneer of a nonexistant social crisis over it. (The reason that might have slightly more credibility would be concerns about him doing this to explicitly circumvent rules against investing in abusive or antagonistic markets- like say he was planning to use the money to fund Iranian nuclear projects or the like) but even then it would make more sense to simply create the ability to freeze the assets if he tries to put them to such purposes (his citizenship doesn't affect the fact that the assets themselves are bound to the market that they're traded in. He may leave the country, but the shares themselves are only useful in the exchange that lists them, which is still here and under our full regulatory control.
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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
Clearly, there are people, such as Schumer, who do want to keep people in the country if them leaving means a potential loss of wealth.
No real wealth is leaving with him.

I agree that this is more perception than reality. But it is still likely that some substantial amount of assets will leave with him.

quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
It's far more likely that this is pandering to wall street brokers who want to be able to profit from that money flowing into there exchanges rather than into foreign exchanges with a veneer of a nonexistant social crisis over it.

This statement is unlikey. Schumer is quite obviously pandering to his Democratic base with a 'get the rich guy' public announcement. I find your explanation that his announcement is designed to appeal to Wall Street brokers as highly unlikely.

quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
He may leave the country, but the shares themselves are only useful in the exchange that lists them, which is still here and under our full regulatory control.

He's planning on selling share's in order to "invest in Brazilian and in other global companies that have strong interests in entering the Asian markets.". So he will convert the shares to cash (which is the only way he'll pay taxes in any case) and then transferring the assets into foreign markets. So yes the share's will stay, but he can only be taxed once by the IRS after he is no longer a US citizen and he's investing in foreign companies.
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
I agree that this is more perception than reality. But it is still likely that some substantial amount of assets will leave with him.
Nothing that we can't easily make more of, which is desirable anyway. Unless you're suggesting that he's going to figure out a way to actually take a big chunk of land with him.

quote:
This statement is unlikey. Schumer is quite obviously pandering to his Democratic base with a 'get the rich guy' public announcement. I find your explanation that his announcement is designed to appeal to Wall Street brokers as highly unlikely.
The New York Senator that has a history of pandering to New York brokers is suddenly going to buck them rather than offer up some token damage control (in addition to the "JOBS" act that allows them a whole new world of cons to run now that people are suspicious of CDOs) to mitigate their swing toward the Republicans?

quote:
He's planning on selling share's in order to "invest in Brazilian and in other global companies that have strong interests in entering the Asian markets.". So he will convert the shares to cash (which is the only way he'll pay taxes in any case) and then transferring the assets into foreign markets. So yes the share's will stay, but he can only be taxed once by the IRS after he is no longer a US citizen and he's investing in foreign companies.
We can freeze his accounts and prevent him from converting the shares if it looks like he's going to do something destructive with the money, which is about the only real concern.

To invest in those other markets, he'll have to sell the cash as well to get the local currency that those markets run on as well. Whether we can tax him is completely irrelevant.

I suppose it's possible that he could use it to buy up millions of pennies and really trash the copper markets, but again, we could probably freeze his accounts if he tries to pull off that kind of stunt.

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cherrypoptart
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http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/01/25/tina-turner-to-become-swiss-citizen-and-give-up-u-s-passport/

ina Turner to become Swiss citizen and give up U.S. passport
By Agence France-Presse
Friday, January 25, 2013 7:14 EST

US pop legend Tina Turner, who has been living in Switzerland since 1995, will soon receive Swiss citizenship and will give up her US passport, Swiss media reported Friday.

“I’m very happy in Switzerland and I feel at home here. … I cannot imagine a better place to live,” Turner told German language daily Blick.

Turner, 73, who was born Anna Mae Bullock, lives in picturesque town of Kuesnacht, on the shores of Lake Zurich in northern Switzerland, and has passed a local civics test and interview, according to an official announcement published in the Zuerichsee-Zeitung daily.

The woman behind such hits as “Private Dancer”, “Simply the Best” and “What’s Love Got to Do With It?” will still need a green light from the canton of Zurich as well was federal authorities before she can receive red passport, the two papers reported.

Turner spokeswoman Karin Rhomberg told the Zuerichsee-Zeitung that the singer wanted to “clarify her situation”.

“Tina Turner will therefore also give back her US citizenship,” she said.

Turner, who has learned German, reportedly moved to Switzerland in 1995 when her longtime partner, German record executive Erwin Bach, was transferred here.

http://news.yahoo.com/tina-turner-her-way-swiss-citizenship-105547825.html

Tina Turner on her way to Swiss citizenship
Associated Press – 2 hrs 46 mins ago

GENEVA (AP) — Tina Turner is on her way to becoming a Swiss citizen.

The American rock diva has lived in the Zurich suburb of Kuesnacht since the mid-1990s. The local Zuerichsee-Zeitung newspaper said on its website the local council announced its decision to grant the 73-year-old Turner citizenship in an official notice published in Friday's edition.

The decision still requires formal approval from cantonal (state) and federal authorities.

-----------------------------------------

Every time I see a story about some prominent American renouncing their citizenship my heart feels a little lighter for them as if I'm watching a wrongfully convicted person walk out of jail with a full pardon. It's like watching a human being finally become free.

I feel happier for them than I would for someone who just won the lottery and I dream, I hope, I pray that someday that person will be me.

Now some people may get mad and think this is just about taxes but Switzerland allows its citizens to have firearms even more than America so perhaps we are jumping the gun a bit by assuming that this is just because of taxes. Perhaps she sees the writing on the wall and realizes this huge gun grab by the fraudulent imposter who still won't release his records is the first inimicable step toward total tyranny.

So though I'm sure that taxes are probably a factor as money always is, it may not be the only or even most important factor. After all, what good is money when your society collapses into a dictatorship?

It's also kind of funny how all the liberals vowed to leave the country if Bush was re-elected but they're actually doing it under Obama.

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AI Wessex
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Um, you think Tina Turner became a Swiss citizen because of guns? [Big Grin] . The rate of gun ownership in Switzerland is about 47 guns /100 people. The US has the highest rate at 88/100. Randy Jackson has said that Tina Turner once shot him when he came to her house, so she'd perhaps be better off here since Swiss gun criminal law is very strict about things like that. Personally, I don't feel at all bad for her and don't see how it relates in any way to anyone else, since she's lived there for 17 years with her significant other, learned German and has passed the required civics test.

[ January 25, 2013, 09:04 AM: Message edited by: AI Wessex ]

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D.W.
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Watch Mad Max beyond thunderdome again Al. cherry may be on to something...
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AI Wessex
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What's Max go to do with it? She's part African, Navaho and Cherokee, all of which have been extreme beneficiaries of US gun violence. Her last big hit 20 years ago was "I Don't Want To Fight", and she's a Buddhist now. I think she went there to get away from the gun violence and for the chocolate.
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D.W.
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quote:
What's Max go to do with it?
[LOL]
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cherrypoptart
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> The rate of gun ownership in Switzerland is about 47 guns /100 people.

What is the rate of Swiss households with guns compared to the U.S.?

In America one household may have six or seven guns, or dozens for collectors and enthusiasts.

But the Swiss may figure only one or two guns per household is sufficient. So they may have a higher rate of gun ownership as far as the number of people or perhaps households in proportion of the population who own guns, but they just need fewer of them per person than many Americans.

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AI Wessex
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I'm sure there is a statistic that will give you a warm feeling. I used the one that is most often applied in the US to determine how common guns are. If you want to split hairs we should take a deeper look at the kinds of limitations and responsibilities the two countries place on gun ownership.
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