Books

 
 
DAVOS MAN
Author: Peter Goodman
Published: 2022
Summary: The New York Times’s Global Economics Correspondent masterfully reveals how billionaires’ systematic plunder of the world—brazenly accelerated during the pandemic—has transformed 21st-century life and dangerously destabilized democracy. His exposé reveals their hidden impact on nearly every aspect of modern society: widening wealth inequality, the rise of anti-democratic nationalism, the shrinking opportunity to earn a livable wage, the vulnerabilities of our health-care systems, access to affordable housing, and unequal taxation. An essential read for anyone concerned about economic justice, the capacity of societies to grapple with their greatest challenges, and the sanctity of representative government.
 
 
 
SHARE THE WEALTH - How we can tax Canada's super-rich and create a better country for everyone
Authors: Jonathan Gauvin and Angella MacEwen
Published: 2021
Summary: Policy experts Jonathan Gauvin and Angella MacEwen show exactly how Canada’s wealth can be more fairly shared with measures that would impact only the one per cent: a wealth tax, higher taxes on the highest incomes, higher taxes on large corporations and higher taxes on big profits coming from capital gains. They also propose measures to shut down tax loopholes and tax havens and to tax web giants.
 
 
 
REBELLION, RASCALS, AND REVENUE: Tax Follies and Wisdom through the Ages
Authors: Michael Keen and Joel Slemrod
Published: 2021
Summary: "Governments have always struggled to tax in ways that are effective and tolerably fair. Sometimes they fail grotesquely, as when, in 1898, the British ignited a rebellion in Sierra Leone by imposing a tax on huts—and, in repressing it, ended up burning the very huts they intended to tax. Sometimes they succeed astonishingly, as when, in eighteenth-century Britain, a cut in the tax on tea massively increased revenue. In this entertaining book, two leading authorities on taxation, Michael Keen and Joel Slemrod, provide a fascinating and informative tour through these and many other episodes in tax history, both preposterous and dramatic—from the plundering described by Herodotus and an Incan tax payable in lice to the (misremembered) Boston Tea Party and the scandals of the Panama Papers. Along the way, readers meet a colorful cast of tax rascals, and even a few tax heroes."
 
 
 
TAX THE RICH - How lies, loopholes and lobbyists make the rich even richer
Authors: Morris Pearl & Erica Payne
Published: 2021
Summary: How do you rig an economy? You start with the tax code. In Tax the Rich! former BlackRock executive Morris Pearl, the millionaire chair of the Patriotic Millionaires, and Erica Payne, the organization's founder, take readers on an engaging and enlightening insider's tour of the nation's tax code, explaining exactly how "the rich"--and the politicians they control--manipulate the U.S. tax code to ensure the rich get richer, and everyone else is left holding the bag.
 
 
 
FRAMING FEMINIST TAXATION
Author: Global Alliance for Tax Justice (GATJ) Tax and Gender Working Group 
Published: 2021
Summary: Everywhere, women tend to proportionately pay more taxes and benefit less from them, as gender-biased and regressive tax systems continue to deepen gender inequality. While the socio-economic crisis triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic has worsened this situation, it only highlights the urgency for structural changes to make taxes work for women. The book presents a feminist intersectional and human rights-based approach to fiscal policies, using examples from Uganda, providing tools to assess the gender bias in current tax systems, and how to advocate towards a tax system that enables substantive gender equality.
 
 
 
THE WEALTH HOARDERS - How billionaires pay millions to hide trillions
Author: Chuck Collins
Published: 2021
Summary: In this book, leading insiders from the wealth defense industry describe how they're paid millions to hide trillions for the richest 0.01%, entrenching hereditary dynasties of wealth and power via anonymous shell companies, family offices, offshore accounts, opaque trusts, and sham transactions to ensure the world’s richest pay next to no tax. Chuck Collins also outlines a robust set of policies that democratic nations can implement to shut down the Wealth Defense Industry for good.
 
 
 
THE WHITENESS OF WEALTH - How the tax system impoverishes Black Americans - and how we can fix it
Author: Dorothy Brown
Published: 2021
Summary: Brown draws on decades of cross-disciplinary research to show that tax law isn’t as color-blind as she’d once believed. She takes us into her adopted city of Atlanta, introducing us to families across the economic spectrum whose stories demonstrate how American tax law rewards the preferences and practices of white people while pushing black people further behind. From attending college to getting married to buying a home, black Americans find themselves at a financial disadvantage compared to their white peers. The results are an ever-increasing wealth gap and more black families shut out of the American dream.
 
 
 
JACKPOT: How the Super-Rich Really Live―and How Their Wealth Harms Us All
Author:
Michael Mechanic
Published: 2021
Summary: What is it actually like to be blessed with riches in an era of plagues, political rancor, and near-Dickensian economic differences? How mind-boggling are the opportunities and access, how problematic the downsides? Does the experience differ depending on whether the money is earned or unearned, where it comes from, and whether you are male or female, white or black? Finally, how does our collective lust for affluence, and our stubborn belief in social mobility, explain how we got to the point where forty percent of Americans have literally no wealth at all? These are all questions that Jackpot sets out to explore. The result of deep reporting and dozens of interviews with fortunate citizens—company founders and executives, superstar coders, investors, inheritors, lottery winners, lobbyists, lawmakers, academics, sports agents, wealth and philanthropy professionals, concierges, luxury realtors, Bentley dealers, and even a woman who trains billionaires’ nannies in physical combat, Jackpot is a compassionate, character-rich, perversely humorous, and ultimately troubling journey into the American wealth fantasy and where it has taken us.
Order from the publisher here.
 
 
 
THE TRIUMPH OF INJUSTICE - How the Rich Dodge Taxes and How to Make Them Pay
Published: 2020
Authors: Emmanuel Saez, Gabriel Zucman
Summary: Even as they have become fabulously wealthy, the ultra-rich have seen their taxes collapse to levels last seen in the 1920s. Meanwhile, working-class Americans have been asked to pay more. The Triumph of Injustice presents a forensic investigation into this dramatic transformation, written by two economists who have revolutionized the study of inequality. Blending history and cutting-edge economic analysis, Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman offer a comprehensive view of America’s tax system alongside a visionary, democratic, and practical reinvention of taxes.
 
 
 
THE LAUNDROMAT
Published: 2019
Author: Jake Bernstein
Summary: Now a film on Netflix, The Laundromat shows the hidden circulatory system flowing beneath the surface of global finance, carrying trillions of dollars from drug trafficking, tax evasion, bribery, and other illegal enterprises, in which the identities of the individuals who benefit from these activities are masked, aided by bankers, lawyers, and auditors who get paid to look the other way. Based on the leaked Panama Papers from disgraced law firm Mossack Fonseca, and other investigations, Bernstein shows how shell companies operate, how they allow the superwealthy and celebrities to escape taxes, and how they provide cover for illicit activities on a massive scale by crime bosses and corrupt politicians across the globe.
 
 
 
THE CODE OF CAPITAL
Author: Katharina Pistor 
Published: 2019
Summary: A compelling explanation of how the law shapes the distribution of wealth. Capital is the defining feature of modern economies, yet most people have no idea where it actually comes from. What is it, exactly, that transforms mere wealth into an asset that automatically creates more wealth? The Code of Capital explains how capital is created behind closed doors in the offices of private attorneys, and why this little-known fact is one of the biggest reasons for the widening wealth gap between the holders of capital and everybody else.
Order via the publisher here.
 
 
 
WINNERS TAKE ALL: The Elite Charade of Changing the World
Author:
Anand Giridharadas
Published: 2019
Summary: Anand Giridharadas takes us into the inner sanctums of a new gilded age, where the rich and powerful fight for equality and justice any way they can—except ways that threaten the social order and their position atop it. They rebrand themselves as saviours of the poor; they lavishly reward “thought leaders” who redefine “change” in ways that preserve the status quo; and they constantly seek to do more good, but never less harm. Why should our gravest problems be solved by the unelected upper crust instead of the public institutions it erodes by lobbying and dodging taxes? Giriharadas argues that we must take on the gruelling democratic work of building more robust, egalitarian institutions and truly changing the world—a call to action for elites and everyday citizens alike.
Order from the publisher here.
 
 
 
THE AGE OF INCREASING INEQUALITY - The Astonishing Rise of Canada's 1%
Author:
Lars Osberg
Published: 2018
Summary: Since the 1980s, Canada's top 1%, and especially the 0.1%, have accumulated vast fortunes while most other Canadians have paid most of the country's taxes, while dealing with unaffordable housing, stagnant wages, and a lack of full time jobs for new graduates. Lars Osberg documents our dramatically rising inequality, providing shocking data about life with top, middle and bottom Canadian incomes, and explaining the causes, from trade deals, the gradual decline of unions, astronomical salaries for corporate executives, managers, and some fortunate professionals.
 
 
 
MONEYLAND - The Inside Story of the Crooks and Kleptocrats Who Rule the World
Author: Oliver Bullough
Published: 2018
Summary: An investigative journalist's deep dive into the corrupt workings of the world's kleptocrats, from ruined towns on the edge of Siberia, to Bond-villain lairs in London and Manhattan, as more and more governments are run by corrupt leaders who prosper at the expense of their people, in a world where the stateless super-rich (and their awful children) abide by no laws, and in which the institutions of Europe and the United States have become money-laundering operations, putting the stability of Western industrial democracies under attack, while heroic activists around the world are fighting back.
 
 
 
GIVE AND TAKE - The Citizen-Taxpayer and the Rise of Canadian Democracy
Author: Shirley Tillotson
Published: 2017
Summary: A hundred years of tax history in Canada, from a Canadian millionaire who embraced the new federal income tax in 1917, to a socialist hero who deplored the burden of big government, reveals that taxes deliver something more than armies and schools: democracy. Tillotson covers the tumultuous tax fights of the interwar years, the remaking of income taxation in the 1940s and onwards, and a fresh angle on the fierce conflicts surrounding tax reform in the 1960s. A book for people into Canadian history, politics, public policy, taxation, social movements, and governance.
 
 
 
DIRTY SECRETS: How Tax Havens Destroy the Economy
Author:
Richard Murphy
Published: 2017
Summary: What happens when the rich are allowed to hide their money in tax havens, and what should we do about it? Dirty Secrets uncovers the extent of the corruption behind the Panama Papers and shows what needs to be done in the face of this unregulated spread of rampant greed. Tax havens, we are often told, are part of the global architecture of capitalism, providing a freedom from regulation necessary to make markets work. Richard Murphy uncovers this lie, showing how this increasingly popular practice threatens the foundations of democracy, sowing mistrust and creating a regime based upon opacity. As Murphy shows, how we manage our economy is a political decision, and one that can be changed. Dirty Secrets proposes ways to regulate tax havens and what the world might look like without them.
Order via the publisher here.
 
 
 
DARK MONEY: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right
Author:
Jane Mayer
Published: 2017
Summary: Why is America living in an age of profound and widening economic inequality? Why have even modest attempts to address climate change been defeated again and again? Why do hedge-fund billionaires pay a far lower tax rate than middle-class workers? In a riveting and indelible feat of reporting, Jane Mayer illuminates the history of an elite cadre of plutocrats—headed by the Kochs, the Scaifes, the Olins, and the Bradleys—who have bankrolled a systematic plan to fundamentally alter the American political system. Mayer traces a byzantine trail of billions of dollars spent by the network, revealing a staggering conglomeration of think tanks, academic institutions, media groups, courthouses, and government allies that have fallen under their sphere of influence. Drawing from hundreds of exclusive interviews, as well as extensive scrutiny of public records, private papers, and court proceedings, Mayer provides vivid portraits of the secretive figures behind the new American oligarchy and a searing look at the carefully concealed agendas steering the nation.
Order via the publisher here.
 
 
 
CANADA: A NEW TAX HAVEN
Author: Alain Deneault
Published: 2016
Summary: Tracing Canada’s historical relationship with Commonwealth Caribbean nations back through the last half of the twentieth century, Deneault describes how the involvement of Canadian financiers in establishing and maintaining Caribbean tax havens predisposed Canada to become a tax haven itself, and resulted in problems beyond tax evasion and money laundering to include legal use of tax havens by large corporations.
 
 
THE PANAMA PAPERS: Breaking the story of how the rich and powerful hide their money
Authors: Bastian Obermayer, Frederik Obermaier
Published: 2016
Summary: Late one evening, investigative journalist Bastian Obermayer receives an anonymous message offering him access to secret data. Through encrypted channels, he then receives documents showing a mysterious bank transfer for $500 million in gold. This is just the beginning. Obermayer and fellow Süddeutsche Zeitung journalist Frederik Obermaier find themselves immersed in the secret world where complex networks of shell companies help to hide people who don't want to be found. Faced with the largest data leak in history, they activate an international network of journalists to follow every possible line of enquiry. Operating for over a year in the strictest secrecy, they uncover a global elite living by a different set of rules: prime ministers, dictators, oligarchs, princelings, sports officials, big banks, arms smugglers, mafiosi, diamond miners, art dealers and celebrities. The real-life thriller behind the story of the century, The Panama Papers is an intense, unputdownable account that blows their secret world wide open. 
 
 
THE TROUBLE WITH BILLIONAIRES
Authors: Linda McQuaig, Neil Brooks
Published: 2016
Summary: The concentrated economic power of billionaires is examined, in how it reverberates throughout society, threatening our quality of life and democracy, and in how our perceptions of large fortunes, often falsely seen as evidence of great talent or accomplishment, ignore how most of this wealth is not due to an increase in talent or effort at the top, and how that falsehood helps legitimize both greed and government policy changes that favour super-rich elites.
 
 
 
TAXING THE RICH: A History of Fiscal Fairness in the United States and Europe
Authors:
Kenneth Scheve, David Stasavage
Published: 2016
Summary: Taxing the Rich draws on unparalleled evidence from twenty countries over the last two centuries to provide the broadest and most in-depth history of progressive taxation available. Scheve and Stasavage explore the intellectual and political debates surrounding the taxation of the wealthy while also providing the most detailed examination to date of when taxes have been levied against the rich and when they haven't. Fairness in debates about taxing the rich has depended on different views of what it means to treat people as equals and whether taxing the rich advances or undermines this norm. Scheve and Stasavage argue that governments don't tax the rich just because inequality is high or rising―they do it when people believe that such taxes compensate for the state unfairly privileging the wealthy. Progressive taxation saw its heyday in the twentieth century, when compensatory arguments for taxing the rich focused on unequal sacrifice in mass warfare. Today, as technology gives rise to wars of more limited mobilization, such arguments are no longer persuasive.
Order via the publisher here.
 
 
 
THE HIDDEN WEALTH OF NATIONS: The Scourge of Tax Havens
Author: Gabriel Zucman
Published: 2015
Summary: Accessible book for the non-specialist to get a good understanding of how the international tax haven system works, including a conservative estimates for Canada's offshore wealth in 2015 at $300 billion, resulting in tax revenue losses of roughly $6 billion at the time.
 
 

THE GREAT REVENUE ROBBERY: How to Stop the Tax Cut Scam and Save Canada
Editor: Richard Swift / Canadians for Tax Fairness
Published: 2013
Contributors: James Clancy, Dennis Howlett, Trish Hennessy, Diana Gibson, Peter Gillespie,  Jim Stanford, Toby Sanger,  Joe Gunn, John Restakis, Murray Dobbin.
Summary: How, given the widespread support of strong public opinion for taxing extreme wealth, tax policy can help rebuild our social programs, reduce the gap between rich and poor, restore environmental responsibility, and revitalize our democracy.
 
 
 
TAX IS NOT A FOUR-LETTER WORD
Editors: Alex Himelfarb and Jordan Himelfarb
Published: 2013
Summary: This book provides new information on how taxation, and our thinking about it, has changed. The contributors present data that shows what we get for what we invest and what we lose when we pay less. It also explores how citizens came to think of tax cuts as the "last free lunch". This book takes a positive approach to opening up public discussion and creating a political will to do better.
 
 
 
TREASURE ISLANDS: Uncovering the Damage of Offshore Banking and Tax Havens
Author: Nicholas Shaxson
Published: 2012
Summary: A former correspondent for the Financial Times and The Economist, Shaxson uncovers how offshore tax evasion, which has cost the U.S. 100 billion dollars in lost revenue each year, is just one item on a long rap sheet outlining the damage that offshoring wreaks on our societies, including the 2009 financial crisis. In a riveting journey from Moscow to London to Switzerland to Delaware, Shaxson dives deep into a vast and secret playground where bankers and multinational corporations operate side by side with nefarious tax evaders, organized criminals and the world's wealthiest citizens. Tax havens are where all these players get to maximize their own rewards and leave the middle class to pick up the bill.
 
 
 
BILL GATES, PAY YOUR FAIR SHARE OF TAXES ... LIKE WE DO!
Author: Brigitte Alepin
Published: 2012
Summary: A behind-the-scenes explanation of what creates a gap of trillions of dollars in government revenues, in virtually every country, as large corporations, the super-rich, and private foundations found many ways to dodge taxes. Using data drawn from leading international organizations, Alepin shows how reclaiming those funds would  go a long way towards balancing the books, and how governments can work together on concrete steps to make wealthy individuals and corporations pay their fair share, all while still growing their wealth.
 
 
 
AMERICAN TAXATION, AMERICAN SLAVERY
Author: Robin Einhorn
Published: 2006
Summary: From the earliest colonial times right up to the Civil War, slaveholding elites feared strong democratic government as a threat to the institution of slavery. American Taxation, American Slavery shows how their heated battles over taxation, the power to tax, and the distribution of tax burdens were rooted not in debates over personal liberty but rather in the rights of slaveholders to hold human beings as property. Along the way, Einhorn exposes the antidemocratic origins of the popular Jeffersonian rhetoric about weak government by showing that governments were actually more democratic—and stronger—where most people were free.
 
 
 
CAPITALISM'S ACHILLES HEEL
Author: Raymond W. Baker
Published: 2005
Summary: For over forty years in more than sixty countries, Raymond Baker has witnessed the free-market system operating illicitly and corruptly, with devastating consequences. This fascinating journey through the global free-market system reveals how dirty money, poverty, and inequality are inextricably intertwined. Discover how small illicit transactions lead to massive illegalities, how staggering global income disparities are worsened by the illegalities that permeate international capitalism, and how Western banks and businesses use secret transactions and ignore laws while handling some $1 trillion in illicit proceeds each year. Baker also illustrates how businesspeople, criminals, and kleptocrats perfect the same techniques to shift funds and how these tactics negatively affect individuals, institutions, and countries.
 
 
 
CES RICHES QUI NE PAIENT PAS D'IMPÔTS
Par : Brigitte Alepin
Publié : 2004
Résumé : Dans cet ouvrage percutant, la fiscaliste Brigitte Alepin relate comment certaines personnalités ainsi que des familles et des entreprises parmi les plus riches du Canada et du Québec abusent systématiquement du système fiscal. Canada Steamship Lines, Irving Oil, des gens du milieu du spectacle, des motards criminalisés, la famille Chagnon, les Bronfman, le CN, le CP, Vidéotron, Molson, Saputo, Alcan, Domtar, des institutions religieuses, les compagnies de tabac... Alors qu’un simple citoyen verse en moyenne 60 % de ses revenus pour payer ses impôts et les taxes à la consommation, tandis que les plus riches ont accès à une panoplie d’outils fiscaux pour contourner, voire annuler des milliards de dollars d’impôts à payer, il y a tout lieu de parler d’un scandale de société.