Escape to ... Russia??Melancton Smith • Thursday January 3, 2013 5:33 AM PDT •
Remember, the “good old days” of the Cold War when the Berlin Wall stood as a monument to communist oppression? I vividly remember pictures of East Germans vaulting over the barbed wire as it was first constructed. An escape from oppression to freedom. Just a look across the Wall to the eastern side showed dilapidation and poverty. Such it was with the entire Iron Curtain. We could see the failure of statism.
Well, in a turn of events, we now have citizens in the “free” West vaulting over barriers to get into Russia. Why? Confiscatory taxation. Despite a legal setback, France still plans to go forward with a 75 percent tax rate on folks earning more than 1 million euros per year. Yes, the government claims that it is entitled to three-fourths of the earnings of its citizens. The tax hike has caused Frenchmen like actor Gerald Depardieu to look elsewhere for a home. Depardieu told friends he was considering three options to escape France’s new tax regime: settling in Belgium, relocating to Montenegro, where he has a business, or fleeing to Russia, French daily Le Monde reported in December. Well, Putin has now granted Depardieu citizenship in Russia so he can flee the oppressive regime in the West. The world is turned upside down.