Thursday, May 31, 2012

Politician's Survival Guide Against the Threat of SALN and Bank Deposit Disclosures


A thief doesn't want to be caught.
I will get to the point quickly. This is to help corrupt politicians, bureaucrats, ordinary government employees, who are anxious where to keep their loots now that they know they would be next after the Supreme Court Chief Justice was kick-out from his office and was denied all of his retirement benefits.

Here is are the two things you need to know first. The difference of STEALING and HIDING it. Stealing is the act of stealing. Hiding is the act of.....of course. These two have a light-year difference. Just like making lies. It is alright to lie.Getting caught is a different story.

So, it must be clear that our main concern therefore is how to be really good at NOT BEING CAUGHT. This was the problem of the ex-Chief Justice. After he excelled in stealing (alleged), he got caught because he lacks IQ where and how to hide those loots. He wasn't caught while stealing. He was caught after he did it. As a damning consequence, he got kicked-out from office by his fellow public officials who I assume also have their own hideous stories of plunder and lies.

To excel at not being caught is to excel in keeping your loots. Just put in mind the following general novice rules.

1. Never ever feel you are untouchable. The ex-Chief Justice was delusional in thinking the time for payback will never come. He was too relaxed to stash mind-boggling amounts of money (relative to his monthly salary) in bank accounts. Learn from this and avoid being complacent about your current status. Tides change.

2. Don't believe bank secrecy laws are absolute. Swiss banking system was once impenetrable. Philippines' compared to Switzerland's is a joke. So don't believe bank secrecy laws here will save your ass when time comes specially when the Philippine anti-money laundering body can now just sneak to your accounts with so much ease.

3. It is risky to use your own name.  Future asset acquisitions must be put under low-profile names preferably 2nd degree relatives, lovers, or  mistresses. Take note of course that those persons must not be government employees.

In every illegal transaction use proxy. This is no-brainer as those above.

Having in mind those simple general rules, what is next would be suggestions where to keep your easy-earned stolen monies.

1. Off-shore banks. Probably the safest . And can be further enhanced using other low-profile names scattered in various locations.

2. Set-up Charitable Foundations/Churches. This strategy is best appropriate with individuals who plans to evade taxes. But this too can be found helpful for politicians or big time bureaucrats to keep their monies intact plus they could generate lots of profits off donations and grants, tax-free. BIR agents has no mandate to stick their noses in charities and churches. your money is safe behind altars and charities.

3. Keep cash somewhere else. En-cash all electronic cash. Have trusted men to maintain secret warehouses to keep the physical cash much like a secretive amphetamine lab. Yes, it generates no profit as in banks. But hey, don't be too greedy. Interests are peanuts if you can keep your illegal activity in perpetuity.

Use other names. This must be a strict discipline specially on assets bought off monies from bribes and kickbacks.

Senator Chiz Escudero and Senator Jinggoy Estrada proposed bills to strengthen SALN and bypass Foreign Currency Deposit Act supposedly to deter would-be crooks. These two gentlemen might not be aware of the glaring difference of stealing and hiding. Or if they do, they are toying on people's intelligence.

Having the rules (novice rules) I mentioned above, any law would be immaterial. Any SALN would be irrelevant. Any mandate for disclosure would be mockery. Remain as happy thieves folks. Just never ever get caught. If that happens, that would be a whole different story.

I wonder what kind of laws and repeals our intelligent lawmakers would come-up with next time.
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