70% of Pakistani Politicians Do Not File Income Taxes

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


Every time there’s another news story about some horrible atrocity taking place in Pakistan, there are also reminders like this that they’re really just like us. Our politicians don’t file income taxes and neither do theirs. But don’t worry, your tax money pays for it all through foreign aid.

Almost 70 percent of Pakistani lawmakers did not file income taxes last year, an investigative journalism group said on Wednesday, highlighting deep flaws in a taxation system that has drawn repeated criticism from Western aid donors.

The Center for Investigative Reporting in Pakistan released a report based on leaked tax returns, marking the first time that the records of 446 lawmakers and ministers have been published and focusing scrutiny on individuals ahead of polls next year.

Pakistan’s inability to raise revenue has constrained government spending, depriving schools and hospitals of funds and exacerbating a power crisis, causing widespread hardship in the nuclear-armed country of 180 million people.

Western allies have poured billions of dollars in aid into Pakistan, worried that growing public anger may boost recruitment to Islamist militant groups threatening to destabilise Pakistan and beyond.

But the aid has not been nearly enough to plug the huge gap between members of the elite, who often pay little tax, and the poor who desperately need the public services taxes should fund.

The solution is obvious. Occupy Pakistan.

 

  • JacksonPearson

    Pakistan's a wellhead for terrorism. In the long haul, we'd be cutting our own throats by aiding Islamic countries. If you've noticed, when a country, anywhere in the world that have a natural disaster (earth quake, flooding, epidemic, starvation, etc), no Islamic countries will ever step forward to help…never!

  • κατεργάζομαι

    Re: 100% of the Obama Family vacations & parties are at the expense of the 51% TAXPAYER.

    Where is OPRAH when we need her?

    • Mary Sue

      Oprah's on the koolaid too.

  • stevef

    Now you don't really think that Pelosi, Buffet, Kennedy and the other DEMS are going to pay the new Obama taxes, do you?

  • Mary Sue

    I've found it a strange irony indeed that the politicians that cry the loudest about the rich not paying taxes…….don't pay taxes.