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Why Eduardo Saverin is the 'Ungrateful Douchebag of the Year.'

+Farhad Manjoo lays bare the shamelessness and depravity of Eduardo Saverin's decision to renounce his American citizenship to avoid U.S. taxes before the Facebook IPO that will make him billions.

As Manjoo points out, America saved Saverin's life, educated him; created the Internet without which Facebook could not exist; created the elite university where he could meet someone like Mark Zuckerberg; created Silicon Valley where a company like Facebook could grow; thrive and have a $100 billion IPO; created the U.S. legal system, which protected his investment in Facebook when in many other countries he would have lost it.

Saverin was happy to be American when it afforded him these many opportunities, and the coming opportunity to gain $5 billion or so for his relatively marginal contribution to the creation of Facebook. And now that it's time to cash in, suddenly he's renouncing his citizenship to avoid contributing back to the country that made him rich beyond imagination.

So you and I will have to keep on paying taxes to support the US government. But not Saverin. He's just going to take the billions America made possible and give nothing back.

What a greedy, shameless, ungrateful douchebag.
Max Kotchouro's profile photoNamran Hussin's profile photoJordanna Martin's profile photoAndres M. Trianon's profile photo
Ah, the perils of a global economy and being filthy rich.

That reminds me: get eyebrows threaded before going to any event where there is photography.
what a Tool...but I really doubt the IRS will allow this to happen.
"What a greedy, shameless, ungrateful douchebag."
Facebook is ran by douchebags like him. Why you think I'm here on Google+ 
Who does he think he is? A Wall Street banker?
Many of the libertarians defending him in forums are also being douche bags, many claiming he left because of US 'tax' environment. How can someone who goes from potential persecution to a billionaire not have enough self awareness and perspective to count himself incredibly lucky?

What you see over and over again is people who make a fortune on investments (as opposed to getting their hands dirty doing actual work) being the loudest ranters about meritocracy and how much they deserve to keep every last cent they 'earned'. The entitlement mentality is very deep in the investment class.

Entrepreneurs who actually roll up their sleeves and build companies often have a more nuanced view of success and how they got there.

How someone can win the lottery of life and not value the system that ran and sponsored the lottery, I just don't get.
Hrm... that's disappointing, to say the least.
He still has to pay a ton in taxes to the IRS - just not as much.
"Depravity" seems a bit harsh for such an obvious and predictable financial choice. Especially since he hasn't lived in the US for years.
"I won't waste my love on a nation," is a thought-provoking lyric of Black Rebel Motorcycle Gang.. Do we condemn Savarin or do we applaud our free market? What does Savarin owe the U.S.A.? Nothing. And everything.
It's our governments fault for allowing him to do so. Uncle Sam should say to him, "too late! We'll take this before you even see a dime."
Or make so he can never under any circumstances enter U.S. territories. No green cards, no visa's, no temporary permission, no nothing."
Well, to be somewhat fair, it's also the US legal and tax system that enables him to "opt out" of avoiding some significant taxes. (I understand that he can't entirely avoid some taxes.)
I would love to pay tax in the states if that would mean I could live there!
There are things I have control over AND...
Why are you insulting honest douchebags by comparing them to this....... thing. Of course he's going to end up ridiculously rich so he'll be able to live wherever he wants to and have ten times the rights and privileges of a normal, hard-working citizen.

#tumbrels required.
Worthless POS...get the heck off the USA's lawn. A Republican too, no doubt.
Speechless...then only expletives!!
So he's buying an island and moving there, cause I'm assuming no country will grand him citizenship...
maybe we'll see him on "Locked Up Abroad" I dunno, it just seems like he's gonna O.D. on Coke or something. I bet this story has a real funny ending.
No offense Rebecca Raven, plenty of Republicans & Democrats have done every thing they can to avoid paying there fair share. This is not a party issue, it's a tax issue. Besides both sides of the line like to say they are for taxing the right people & who those people are, but neither are willing to tax the people who pay for their elections (which hint, is the top 1%). Stop being one of those political ban wagoneers, think for yourself, & realize both parties aren't out for your interest. They are out for their own.
+Tag Lilly Stop the false equivalencies, Tag and I do not do everything I do to avoid taxes. No offence? Meh.
So this guy is the only billionaire / corporation not paying their fair share under your tax code? Yeah that's what I thought.

Expected better from you Mike.
Raise your hand if you wouldnt do the same given the opportunity. Blah. Hypocrisy and jealousness are terrible.
While the business side of me understands the decision (he'll be saving hundreds of millions in taxes), the patriotic side of me abhors it.

Personally, I would gladly pay the taxes rather than renounce my citizenship to my country.

If there is a positive in this story, it's that America offers you the right to do that. You can't say that about some countries in the world, and it's one of countless reasons that make this country so great. #goUSA
People focus solely on him not wanting to pay taxes in the US, rather than what it is. He doesn't want to pay taxes in Singapore where he lives and also in the US purely because he is a citizen. As a citizen of another country living abroad I don't like the idea of having to pay taxes in both at once. Why pay taxes in a country where I do not currently reside?
^Raises Hand. I may not like the taxes in this country, but I still believe in what it stands for and would never renounce it for money. As the man once said, once you decide to accept money, you have established what you are, and now it is just down to dickering over the price.
Greed usually lead to nothing but miseries. Stories about lottery winners ultimately end badly, this one is another bad case in the making.

Since it is now public info, guess who will the sea pirates and other rogue nations go after for the slices of the pie.
Of course he's a douche. It's Facebook ffs. The US is hardly in a position to call anyone an ungrateful opportunist though. It just works the same on a large scale as it does on a small one.
I have to say that it is the prerogative , no it's the duty of any American to avoid taxes whenever possible. It is a time honored American trait. Where I fault him is taking the easy way out. He should have bought a good tax lawyer or politician and paid a lower tax rate than his secretary.
I would do the same thing. Apple & Microsoft have billions overseas because of how much they would get taxed here. He's a smart man.
I will ask him why before passing any judgement? This is going to be shocking for Americans but people who are on the move globally every couple of years think differently and there are no global tax standards so they have to pick and choose....Mike didn't see you pass any judgement on Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan who just lost 2 Billion dollars after a financial crisis hit this country just three years back.....
Can't agree with this...

In a capitalist society you should be free to move where you like - on the terms that suit you best. If you - as a locale - can't offer decent terms then you lose. That's capitalism... What America has it owes to that mentality - not the attitude that anyone owes it anything...
Dont act like the majority of people (in his situation) wouldn't do the same.
+Isaac Garcia by your logic the country would be better off if we reduced the tax rate to 0% for everyone.

+Alex Scalero I admire your willingness to declare yourself such a lousy American publicly.
Milty C
Wow, Mike this article goes off the deep end with misguided patriotism.

Just because this guy doesn't want his US citizenship DOESN'T mean he hates America. You can still appreciate and love a country without a piece of paper. The guy hasn't lived in the US for a while either.
Nobody said he "hates America." Elgan called him a douchebag for shirking his responsibilities so he can be slightly more rich than he already is.
No one mentions he's really in Singapore due to age of consent laws..
61 pluses, 17 re-shares and 58 comments in 30 minutes, I expected more from you Mike
America isn't owed a dime. He didn't really "earn" his money, but he's taking advantage of the same tax loopholes that every rich man does.

It's being sensationalized because it's Facebook IPO news. Link bait for news makers.

Let's all relax and worry about somebody whos actually raping the American people, shall we?
When Mitt Romney was asked why his tax rate was so low he responded ´ I pay everything I legally have to pay and not $1 more´.. How can we critic this guy when a guy who may be the next President basically said the same thing. Romney hid money in the Cayman Islands, had accounts in Switzerland... why? to avoid paying taxes. I see no difference.
Think of all the drones we could have had with all that cash! The US could be terrorizing so many more people in more different countries.
I don't know how much more ungrateful this makes him than so many billionaires who hide their assets offshore, pay legions of accountants, and lobby the government for tax breaks to keep their cut under 15% while working class Americans are paying 20-30% of what they make. Is he being calculating and greedy? Yes. Does that have anything to do with where he's from, where he lives, or who he "owes" for his success? Not really. If taxes are about "owing" the society that you become successful in, should Japanese animators pay taxes to America for inventing the cartoon? Should a chef in London pay taxes to India for creating the Hyderabadi cuisine he serves in his restaurant? If I were raised in France and educated in England, but I get paid by an American company, where do I pay my "dues?" Taxes aren't some sort of obligation or "price" of success, they're part of the social contract we engage in by existing in a society. They're a shouldering of our share of the burdens of societal operation. If someone no longer wants to be part of my society, that's fine. I'm more concerned with those who openly claim American citizenship, reap its rewards currently, and still carry none of its responsibilities or obligations.
By all accounts there are still many, many more extremely wealthy Americans actively dodging their own taxes and whatnot to remain even more richer than they already are.

If Saverin has renounced his citizen ship to avoid taxes, then perhaps he should be congratulated for his honesty. Which then begs the question as to those [citizens] who continue to shirk their own tax and moral liabilities to their own country.
You strike me as the ungrateful douchebag. This guy helped get Facebook off the ground, which has contributed greatly to the world by bringing people together and helping dissidents coordinate their activities, and all you can think of is taxing the shit out of him?

Mike, you're a snobby prick. And with people like you infesting this country, I don't blame Saverin a bit for renouncing his citizenship.
How many insurance agents circled Mike Elgan?
Dang, I think I see why John Allen Williams made the long trips East
Yes, good move, delightful. Everyone should renounce their citizenship. After all, taxes are an abomination, because only people who make tons of money are qualified to know where that money should be spent, right? :/
I'm shocked and disappointed at how many people in this comment thread are 'ok' with this and would sacrifice their integrity for a few silver pieces.

What else are you people willing to sell off? Your religion? Your limbs? Your sexuality?
facebook is driven by money, what else ?
Tim Box
Why is it OK for Apple, Google etc to use all the tricks in the book to get out of paying the proper rate of tax in all the countries they sell goods/services in, and when an individual tries to do the same he is chastised?
His actions pretty much say how un-American he actually is. Let him renounce his citizenship. Take the money off the counter and go.
The US is one of the rare countries that taxes its' citizen's earnings made while living elsewhere. Most civilized countries don't do this. So if taxes is really the reason he's doing this, more power to him.
Sadly, IRS and Treasury Dept regulations on US citizens living abroad have created a crisis where huge numbers are non-compliant (in many cases without actually owing anything in US taxes), and in many cases considering renouncing US citizenship as the simplest way to become 'legal'.
I don't think US as an immigration country has much to complain about when you view the case at the national level... Millions of people move to the US every year.
I don't know. Trading money for the loss of your reputation and all public good will is not necessarily a wise move for this guy. Life is long.
+Tim Box British Petroleum? What about BP / Rosneft ; You guys trade gum balls to Siberia to recoup on oil you spilled in the Gulf.
He wants to be sure nobody feels sorry for them after they saw The Social Network. At least Mark Zuckerberg hasn't done this yet.
People seem to think they can benefit from a country without paying for it.
Renouncing citizenship does strike an emotional chord. However, is his attempt to avoid taxes any worse then Apple keeping the bulk of their profits offshore?
It's really too bad Obama really isn't the socialist monster conservatives claim he is because this guy would be tops on the list of former american citizen's about to be popped by a drone.

As is the POTUS is subject to the rule of law and impeachment by congress who would surely impeach a somebody that threatened the flow of bribes campaign contributions from foreign powers.
First off, unless you are permanently moving to another country, or marrying a foreigner or something like that, I think it is sad when anyone wants to renounce citizenship in the country that has been their home. If his reason for doing it is to avoid taxes (I have no proof of this), then it is doubly sad....
He's actually taking everything america taught him, and using it fully. Do you even understand what it means to be "american" any more. Get everything you can for as little effort and who cares who you step on to get that money.

He's the perfect example of what american society produces.
I'm astonished by how many States represented themselves here, crying, name calling all these places I ride by on the bus to school.
Eric Z
I don't know anything about this guy - so I'm speaking globally now.
But if a government taxes you too much - it's not right.
It is wrong to call people douchebags for wanting to hang on to their money and not fork it over to an unworthy corrupt state.
Income tax should be illegal.
When Michael Schumacher wanted to move to Switzerland because Germany was taxing the crap out of him- the then Chancellor Schröder said "mit dem kann man keinen Staat bauen!" - with him you can't build a state! That is NEWSPEAK folks!
In normal English it translates to - I'm pissed that I can't rip him off more and use his tax money to fill my corporate-banker owned-career politician pockets!
What I see now in this forum/post is a bunch of lowly class envy.
Class envy is the root of communism folks....and guess what ... we have been A/B testing communism and socialism for the last hundred years and the test results are in - result = it sucks! Get over it!
Yeah, omg, is because of him that US people (I don't know how to call people who is born in USA) is so poor.
Oh Goody, Another person I can have no respect for. And they both have Involvements with Facebook! This Guy just gives me more reasons as to Why "I hate most rich people!"
Nice eyebrows, bro. You'd think with all that money he could get that fixed.
+Mike Elgan I understand why this guy seems like a douchebag (and as a "socialist Canadian" I tend to agree) but he's really just doing what the system teaches. He's putting himself first. This type of bad behaviour will stop at roughly the same time as socialized (communist!) medicine stops being viewed as evil. :)
With all that money, he doesn't have to care what we think about his eyebrows.
As someone who has started the process of changing citizenship I have mixed feelings about this. The timing seems to make him a douchebag but unless Singapore really has a fast track citizenship process I assume he must have started the process at least a year before and had to maintain residence over there for a couple of years prior to that to become eligible. This was not someone who decided in January to get a new citizenship. But quite possibly he was happy maintaining dual citizenship till it became more of a liability than an advantage.
Other points to consider, this guy had already changed his citizenship once before(even though he was only 16 at that time I believe) so he probably never had very strong emotions about US citizenship. Even if he had remained an US citizen he would always be treated differently then those who were born in the US. You can't be the president of this country. What fun is it being a billionaire if you can't start your own presidential campaign :-)
Well, like Eduardo Savering, I'm from Brazil, and while I disagree that he accomplished what he has accomplished SOLELY because he was enjoying the benefits America has to offer (although that obviously has played a big part in it), I have to agree that he is a douchebag for renouncing his American citizenship. Seems very greedy and ungrateful.
How many billion dollars in taxes does Apple avoid paying in the US every year by making use of God only knows what schemes? I would love to hear more people calling them names as they're calling Saverin. Not that I condone what Saverin is doing, I just don't like double standards.
Instead of bitching and moaning about this guy, why not aim that anger towards a more reasonable problem; the laws that allow him to do what he's doing?
They get that CD and DVD piracy under control over there Giuliano?
I havn't seen Apple bashing like this since The Holy Bible
yeah - pretty disgusting. Way to be a stand up guy Eddy
Another reason not to be especially fond of Facebook.
you might want a new accountant and rethink that one. so much fun to do here..
setup the trust funds, and the IRA's.
course those are limited, sure there is something, but to think having all that money and no access to the best malls in the worlds seems crazy to me.
The Americans are always astonishing me with their self centered mind set.

The most stupid article of the year.
no fly list, want American Advertising money but don't want to pay for American services..totally, greedily, selfish to me..ya stock worth Hundreds to me...
wow, government greed makes his move logical and he's called greedy. is it greedy to avoid virtual theft? a rational system of taxation would draw money here not send it scurrying for safety.
This is one of the stupidest thing I have read recently... One must be either completely ignorant or totally envious to make such a comment! First of all, Saverin still has to pay lots of taxes to the US and second of all - this is a free world, he can do whatever he thinks is best for him and no one can judge him!
America doesn't need nor want such a selfish moron. As he continues to give in to narcissistic unhealthy baseness, greed and habits, he will learn to regret his decision and the loss of the life and liberty he had. Giving back in humility for the blessings one has received is the mark of maturity and worth. So far, he is proving only he is a failure at life.
Question: Can anybody name an internet services corporation that has hundreds of millions of global (sorry China) users that did not originate in the U.S.? One.

Just one.

AOL, MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, Google, Amazon and.......?

Without U.S. laws and protections this guy would have bupkis.
+Mike Elgan I maybe wrong, but I believe even after someone idiotically and stupidly renounce their US citizenship, they are still liable for taxes for 10 years following such (ill conceived and selfish) act!
I'm sorry ... this lucky man discovers a LEGAL way to save himself MILLIONS OF DOLLARS in taxes and you want to give him a bad time? How about going after those who stay and pay NOTHING
Or you can live in the US as a non-citizen, get the tax taken without any representation, they'll happily take your money and give you nothing in return. If you're a US citizen and you plan to live somewhere else for awhile, you still have to pay Uncle Sam. But being an American is worth losing 60% of your income right? This guy has probably paid more tax in his life so far, than the entire population of some municipalities.
Or you can pick a country, go to college there. And leave. But there's only 1.
I think Eduardo Saverin's a Douchebag. He picks a legal prostitution country; he dies of a drug overdose by 2018.
This guy is an easy target. I'm wondering how many responding to this post are completely honest at tax time. Or how about those that take from the US government because they believe they 'deserve it' not because they actually need it.
So wealthy immigrants from developing countries have to thank America for their lives? Seriously? How about a "be grateful you´re still alive tax"? Saverin attended an expensive elite university. What about his post-grad studies, MBA? Couple of hundred thousand dollars there. As an international student he possibly had to cash out lots more than an american citizen at that time. His family moved to Miami and probably was living on welfare? Of course not, they owned businesses, investing money in USA. What about the internet? How about all successful internet entrepreneurs around the world start paying a worship tax to USA to thank them for it? That would bring in lots of money! He should be grateful to the US legal system, otherwise he wouldn't have been able to settle down an agreement with Zuckerberg, who obviously was worried about having to pay more bucks if the lawsuit continued. Ultimately, if Saverin wants to dodge american taxes by renouncing his citizenship , what about all the major corporations (including american ones) who avoid taxes? A couple of billion dollars compared to god knows hundreds of billions. In the end, Saverin's couple of billion of dollars of taxes would probably be ill-spent on war games ,Colombian hookers (sorry, couldn´t help that one) and bailing out greedy banks instead of genuinely improving american healthcare, education and employment rates.
I hope he contracts some rare third world disease in Singapore...
I don't think he has to thank America for anything. If he wants to legally dodge taxes he can. Lots of large companies do it, and now so is he. It's the American way. I'm Canadian and if someone did this in Canada it wouldn't bother me. If he cares so little about his citizenship that he would throw it away like that then he shouldn't have it anyways.
ps. Yes, he is probably a greedy a-hole.
Um. You can't avoid paying U.S. taxes just by renouncing your U.S. Citizenship. If he tries it, he will find himself the IRS's bitch.
He is waiting for election. If Obama hires the taxes to 30% , he would not like to pay more than 300 million dollares a year. Yes he has more than a billion dollars. Obama is now outsourcing the billionaires. Singapore now thanks America.
I have gained a lot of repect for the State of Arizona over the past hour or so.
Saverin has the freedom to do whatever he wants. If that means renouncing his citizenship so be it. If I was making that much money I'd do the same thing.
Milty C
+Tom Dignazio Maybe hate was too a strong word but nevertheless the article is still wrongly IMPLIES that Eduardo Saverin is somehow ungrateful or is unpatriotic or doesnt like america or whatever you want to call it. He could very well be respectful and fond of america , but simply didnt want too pay more tax then he had too. Isnt this want we all do, try and save on tax. Are we all unpatriotic !
He's Robbing California, too; all you Douchebag lovers chatting about the companies right out the window. Crybaby Blue States; You're all Hip on Businesses that are nothing without San Jose and the Silicon Valley.
Milty C
+Mike Elgan Ive got no problem with debates, even spirited ones but for me personal attacks like the one in this article are totally unnecessary and just plain wrong. It would of been far more prudent to have written an article that discussed the pros and cons of Eduardo's decision so we can all debate it in a civilized manner. Instead you resorted to put downs and insults. Its disappointing.
civil discourse is one thing...labeling someone a douchebag, who is clearly a a necessity in certain occasions. This is one of them.
A few thoughts on this: 1.) I liked him better in the movie :| 2.) Americans need to understand, that this is what the uber-wealthy do. Saverin's action is more visible and extreme, so it seems shocking. 3.)
Apparently even billions can't buy you good eye brow grooming.
Milty C
Im sorry Bill, but this is no clear cut case. Thats what make these insults even worse. True patriots care for all people and dont slander. When people slander, they spread hate into a nation that they claim to love. Not very patriotic is it.
I find it quite ironic that +Mike Elgan a "cult of mac" writer berates Saverin as being "a greedy, shameless, ungrateful douchebag" for avoiding paying US taxes when his beloved Apple is one of worst companies when it comes to evading paying US taxes...
It's his money that he legally earned. Period.
Excessive greed is for assholes. The government is in debt. If the rich people can run the world alone and still produce, then I'd respect the desire to horde ridiculous wealth, but they can't.
Sorry, this analysis can be applied to every single American who is lucky enough to be American and has enjoyed the benefits of safety, security, education, etc. but the conclusion being drawn here is off base. Every American also enjoys freedom and that includes freedom to leave. And once you've decided to go live in another country permanently you are free to give up your American citizenship or apply for non-resident status so that you don't have to pay tax to the American government while you are not living and working in the USA. Saverin will likely pay the proper tax on the assessed value of his Facebook stock at the time he legally became non-resident and gave up his citizenship. What he won't pay is income tax on his FUTURE gains, if there is any. A similar situation can be found domestically... many professional golfers take up residency in Florida because there is no state tax. Should they be somehow ashamed of themselves for where they choose to live? Saverin is going to pay several hundred million dollars in tax so let's not make it out like he's getting a free ride here.
All I read in this post is, How great is America and why we should all worship it for inventing the things it did.
I don't think it's fair to insult Saverin like this. I'm not defending his actions necessarily, it's OK to criticize those if you disapprove. But the name calling is really not on, it's childish and just plain rude.
+Milty C This is my stream, and I created this account in part to express my own opinions. If you don't want to circle someone who expresses their opinions, and occasionally goes off on shameless douchebags, then you don't want to circle me.
+Dave Yeagly I agree. He has the right to be a douchebag, and I have the right to call him one.
The guy was originally Brazilian in the first place. Blind patriotism is the worst enemy of a country. You get pompous and arrogant believing you are number one.Failing to see that things are not the way they used to be. Everyone thinks their number one. That is why a lot of countries suck and fail to develop. Shit i digressed, guess that is how pissed i am with Blind patriotism. Drop the nationality if you need to, Who cares about a piece of paper.
That's why billionaires become billionaires. Rupert Murdoch had to renounce his Australian Citizenship and become an American citizen in order to meet US regulations so he could buy Fox.
Milty C
Im actually a fan, i like 99 % of your posts. But this article seems really negative and quite out of place compared to any of the other posts i can recall (or maybe i haven't been reading carefully enough). I just feel you can express yourself better and people would respect your opinion more without the insults,We'll have to agree to disagree on this one. I dont think this issue is big enough to stop me following, but well see how things go.
He´s just making a business decision here (because he has no feelings for America), does that make him a douchebag? I don´t think so. Besides, nobody knows what he´s going to do with his money, maybe he´s going to help people someway, who knows.

I can expect this sort of article from that joke of journalist of +Farhad Manjoo . but it surprises me coming from you Mike. Not your best post.
+Mike Elgan yes, your stream but the counterpoint, if you care to address it, is that he's not doing anything wrong... legally, ethically, or morally, so what exactly is the basis for your opinion? He was an American citizen and wanted to go live somewhere else which is his right and millions of Americans do it every year. As of the day he left he, effectively, asks the IRS what he owes. They tell him and he pays. He's abiding by the law and just doesn't want to pay taxes on his future earnings to a country where he doesn't live or work... how exactly does this make him a bad person? He has been living in Singapore for a many years... if anything he might have been trapped by the US tax system because if he exited before now the IRS would have assessed several hundred million in taxes on the estimated value of his FB stock and he wouldn't have the cash to pay... then if FB crashed and burned to zero he'd still owe the assessed tax. He might have wanted to immigrate to Singapore (it's actually a nice country) for many years but was forced to wait for his old buddy Zuckerberg to go public so he could sell a few shares.
Maybe he's a righteous man… who knows.
(My personal guess is no, to be honest, but I'd prefer to be wrong)
It can be a moral, personal choice to not pay taxes.
Because he grown, learnt and made his money in USA does not forces him to give anything back. I think he should.

Maybe he would do it gladly if it would help the thousands of people who lost their homes and everything after the subprimes crisis. Maybe he prefers to pay taxes in a country that is not the first weapon provider in the world, but still build hard-drives for our laptops.

Some left their home country to avoid taxes, and made huge donations to OMGs, hospitals, associations, start-ups…

Some are ready to act this way and stand the criticism of the crowd, because they know what's in their heart, who they are and what's their plan.
Some stands it because they love money before all… Most of them, unfortunately…

Cheers from France, a country from which rich people also escape. ;)
I don't really understand everyone rushing to defend this guy on a volunteer basis. If he wants me to think highly of him or at least less negatively, or have me convince others to do the same, he can pay me- and he can afford to.
I have often wondered : If we are building things like the Internet where borders don't make sense, does nationality still matter ? Are we not rather just becoming culturalites ? Facebook typify s that. It is designed to bring people closer irrespective of where they are. To remove barriers. So his mindset becomes one of "Why be american if is it going to harm me in the future". I am sure he paid his taxes in the past, so therefore his account should be balanced. Why right does the US have to his future earnings ? Ballsy though.
The American government did not create Facebook, nor the elite university, and it had some influence on the start of the internet, but that didn't take off until the private sector got a hold of it - the American people did all that. I'm sure that Saverin is trying to escape the American government's onerous foreign taxation, not the American people, who are distinct from their runaway government. We're the only first world country which taxes citizens who live and work abroad, and as someone who has roots in two places, I also know that America makes life so hard for foreign banks, that they often refuse to take clients "tainted" with American citizenship.

Saverin is doing what's right for him personally and being honest about it. Good for him!
Ok, let's see if I can summarize the douche-defenders:

1. Why you picking on him when <insert corporation here> also uses whatever legal chicanery they can to avoid taxes. 1a. Lots of other people get away with tax cheating to. (Doesn't absolve him, and most of them don't quit their citizenship to do it) Also, corporations have an excuse for their tax lowering schemes, since public companies are beholden to shareholders, and in competition with other companies on the market to maximize earnings per share. But if an individual doesn't optimize their taxes, they're not going to face a shareholder lawsuit or loss of investors.

2. US is only country to tax income earned overseas. (Irrelevant, he earned it here.)

3. He funded Facebook. (He bought a lottery ticket, don't lottery winners have to pay taxes on their winnings? What other thing did he do to earn the right to keep 100% of his winners that makes him different than any gambler? Did he write any code?)

4. Taxes are theft. (You a moron? Go take your position to a communist who thinks all property is theft. These positions lead NOWHERE and are held by simplistic children or religious zealots stuck on Rand or Marx. Moreover, someone who partakes in all of the positive externalities made possible by our society and everyone else contributing, and then takes his winnings and runs is a thief, or minimally, a freeloading welfare queen.)

5. US government will waste the money. (So then, what, that gives you the right to stop paying taxes?)

6. Don't agree with what the government will spend it on. (Again, he benefited on what they already spent the money on, and you simply don't get to refuse to pay taxes just because the government is doing something you don't like if you made the money within our borders.)

The fundamental issue is, here is a guy who got extremely lucky in life. He wasn't a brilliant scientist, or Steve Jobs, or even someone who had amazing foresight. He placed his chips on the roulette wheel and won big, and this country is responsible for having the rules necessary to allow this game to be played.

A normal person, someone not completely corrupted by the process, who still has some semblance of self awareness, would feel amazingly blessed they they were getting multiple billions of dollars for a tiny investment when most people are lucky to get any money back at all in angle investment. A regular person might think, you know, $4.4 billion is awesome I don't even know what I'm going to do with it all, and if I only can take home $3 billion cash after taxes, I'll be ok. 5% here or there isn't going to kill me.

A person who wants to scrape every last penny, when millions of Americans are below the poverty line, when our education system is crumbling, especially in California, you know, the kids who will go on to work for the next generation of startup companies of tomorrow, is an unpatriotic, greedy, douche bag.

I and many of the people working for Silicon Valley companies, you know, the 1% who actually pay income taxes instead of capital gains taxes, will have to pay to educate the youth of tomorrow to keep the capitalist miracle going.

People like Saverin are merely parasites on the system.
All I'm going to say is - hate the game, don't hate the player.
Add that to my list. This is also the usual resort to douche-bag companies abusing the Patent System with bogus patents "hey, it's the way the system is set up, don't blame me for being a jerk and an asshole."

Just because something is legal to do doesn't mean we should not socially shame people who act like assholes. I don't want a legal system so strict and so Orwellian that being an asshole is illegal.

I want to live in a society where we have freedom, and people are free to be jerks. We expect most people to behave responsibly and criticize those who don't.

Why do people get so upset about this essential process of criticism? It's like you want to shut everyone up, don't shame this guy, let him just go off and do his thing, after all it's legal.

If you want to live in a free society, then you should tolerate criticism of others, rather than suggesting we tolerate bad behavior uncritically.
Why do I hear absolute silence on how American companies go out of their way to recruit, say, IIT graduates from India? India raised them and educated them, aren't they also ungrateful douchebags for leaving India for jobs in America?
Silence? I hear Americans complaining about H-1B visas in the tech sector all the time. Secondly, many IIT grads go to US graduate schools as well.

Third, you should know that a large amount of remittances are sent back from the US. About $64 billion in remittances was sent back to India in 2011. Remind me again if the budget of IIT is $64 billion?
Obama is outsourcing the billionaires?
I was actually going to point out that once they've left India for American Jobs that much of the money goes through a money gram or western union furthering economic downturns but we weren't bashing India or the Mexicans, we're bashing this douche Saverin.
Nothing Exceeds Like Excess!! Take heart -- In the End, the Poor Bastard will die - peeing and pooing on himself - Just like the rest of us..
One More thing - This so called company - was built by a pack of wolves - who ever thought something like this was not going to happen -- just remember the anecdote about the man and his pet snake, that killed him..
I can see George Coelho - you are another one of those "Geniuses" I hear so much about -
Eric Z
+Mike Elgan Mike can call this guy a douchebag for whatever reason he wants, for example I think Mark Zuckerberg is a douchebag because he is such an Obama SUCK-ASS! But despite that I would not get mad at Zuck wanting to protect his money too nor would I be surprised if he decided to leave the country.
This forum is such a great example of a good cross-section of our country! People supporting and people against etc.
Did you know that EVERY income tax was (at least in the western world) introduced to finance WAR? Look it up and prove me wrong...
Also this forum is a good example of how some people are controlled by newspeak.
The people who thinks he's a douchebag use words like "the nations wealth" - this is a sly tactic which FRAMES the subject. Do NOT let yourself into this framed argument.
There is no such thing as the "nations" wealth - that implies it belongs to "the people" and not you and not only that - you didn't work for it nor deserve it.
Besides that it's a disgusting display of class envy.....childish....
Eric Z
OK agreed- let's not use the communism label - let's just replace it with a less charged or polarized one like "rip-off". I believe that is cross-platform enough for everyone to understand.
Good deal of acrimony here about Saverin's decision, and on first blush, probably earned, but it'd be good to see what Saverin himself says.
Regardless of what ever reason he has decided on this move, ultimately it shows his complete lack of honor and faith in his home country.....Turning your back on your country for the sake of the dollar sign is the utmost of betrayal.....but doing so after it has given you so much is a veritable kick in the teeth.
Is any of this going to bother him in the slightest ?....of course it is not.
Just a pity he will still be able to visit the USA and enjoy its freedoms with his stolen riches.
If any one had some sense they would ban him from entry.
Just a note for those eager to defend Mr. Saverin. The 2-3 billion he has made of facebook is mostly from an initial investment of $15,000. That was from the money he made off of insider trading in Brazilean oil. He is now spending money on bar tabs over $10,000 a night

So much for having "earned" the money or "spending it better than the government would".

Legally, he has every right to do this. Likewise, people have the right to say he is kinda douchey.
+clifford lowe Its HIS money. He earned it legally. He can throw it in the Indian Ocean if he wants to. He can do whatever he wants to do with it.
of course they do +clifford lowe (i guess, that at least the last part of your comment was directed at me ... lol) ... i just wonder how many of those who so self-righteously call on that right, are hypocrites? ... i, for one, don't approve off saverin's behavior (i certainly don't defend it ... actually i agree with the article 100%), but i certainly wouldn't bet on me not doing the same, if the alternative would mean i'd lose tens, if not hundreds, of million of dollars ...
Really?? This seems just like an immense hypocrisy to me. He's just one of thousands who dodge the system and try to make the most out of the capitalist society we live in, he just happens to be an incidentally famous guy (credits to Hollywood). It would make way more sense if all this indignation was targeted towards the hundreds of douchebags heading the main financial/banking/investment american institutions, that make offshore transfers of zillions as their everyday's business... Or even better, why don't targeted it towards the republicans on the Congress that insist on not taxing the richest guys? Oh well...
Very disappointing post Mike. This blind, self-centred perspective is one of the worst things about modern American culture. Patriotism is ok, but thinking that everyone should love the smoothly run, fair USA and never want to leave is ridiculous. Especially given the fact that he has been living in Singapore for many years, it is preposterous to criticise him so heavily for wanting to keep more of his own money.
Maybe the poor guy still does not realise how much money he wil get and giving something back does not hurt. 
Regardless of which side you take on this matter, I think the mere fact that there's so much polarizing about this subject shows that maybe it's not as clearcut as most people are treating it. Especially the extremists. How many of you actually stopped to think about the counterpoints offered here before you jumped to your guns to defend your pre-conceived ideas? I for one am rethinking my original stance.
Eric Z
+Ellen Black Stolen riches? I suppose Bill Gates owes all his riches to "the people" too? This is typical "Rich people bashing" - there's no way they "deserve" that money is there? "The nations wealth" belongs to all of us - evil rich guys!
Newflash - once you have a couple of dollars in your wallet - somewhere someone is calling you rich!
This class envy and rich bashing is disgusting and low...
on another note ... should he really pay tax to the US government, for them to use two third of their discretionary spending to finance an inflated military [source: yahoo! finance], that they use to invade other countries under false pretences? ... it is all nice to say how much he's received in benefits, but let's not forget that the largest part of what he'd pay in taxes would be used for very undesirable purposes ...
B Ossia
YES, What a greedy, shameless, ungrateful douchebag.
I guess I don't blame him. I'd have a hard time giving so much money (taxes) to a govt that clearly has no idea of how to spend it responsibly. However, I would absolutely find worthy charities to give much to.... charities within the US, that is. 
The douchebags are in Congress and the state legislatures that have created such a tax climate where the tax burden outweighs the advantagea of being a US citizen. Imagine if the tax consequences of wealth weren't so high. He would still be here paying taxes and spending and investing his new found wealth. Our loss is another nation's gain. I can fault no man for wanting to retain what he has earned. 
It just proves how unattractive being American has become. We are behind other countries on every metric that matters in our everyday lives.
what a whiner! bring to brazil the whole package man!
+Ray Cromwell you make some good counter points to some of the defenses that have been presented in Saverin's defense and I'm inclined to agree with you in the sense that many of those things have nothing to do with Saverin personally but you seem to be saying that because he got lucky or because America has problems that he should pay more tax than he is supposed to and that is equally incorrect. Let me say this again... the IRS is going to assess tax on Saverin based on the assessed value of his FB stock at the time of his exit from the US. He will pay tax on what he earned while he was an American and it will include capital gains tax and an exit tax on his total assets. Now that he's no longer an American he won't pay tax to the USA on his FUTURE earnings. The IRS will apply the tax code to Saverin as they do to every other American. Millions of people immigrate to other countries for a variety of reasons every year and the tax code or the US and most other countries very correctly allow those people to stop paying tax to the country they are no longer living in. This guy has done nothing wrong... he has exercised his rights that every American citizen enjoys. He invested in a start-up and hit it big. Good for him. It doesn't matter that all he did was invest some money... that happens every day... family, friends, angel investors, etc. invest money into start-ups. They get shares. If the company is successful they make money and that is how it should be. If you buy shares in a public company and the price doubles you equally didn't write any code or do any work. And if one day you decide to move to another country permanently, for any reason you want to (thanks to the fact that Americans enjoy freedom), you too won't have to pay tax to the USA on your future earnings.
I am not American and I totally agree with you
Although I am frustrated with our government and the tax beast it has become, he needs to pay his taxes like we all do. Glad I made my investment in G+. He is an embarrassment to all Americans.
this post embodies modern day jingoistic xenophobia and little else. well, no, envy too.
+1 for Eduardo Saverin. He took the risks and it payed off. I love the US, my country, but cant stand the policy of punishing the successful achievers.

And the idea that he should be more grateful for the opportunities that he got coming to this country reminds me of the ignoramuses that condemn France and their attitude toward the US; saying that if it wasn't for us they would be goose-stepping and speaking german. If it wasn't for France during the revolutionary war the US would still be practicing Tea time.

For those who think that the wealthy should pay their 'fair share' of taxes I ask you this: why is it that the top 1% of the wealthy pay about 37% of the taxes; shouldn't they only have to pay only 1%?? - BTW I am not one of those 1%; I only just recently got a PT job after being out of work for 4 years, but I hope one day to be in their class!!
KC Tan
+David Gonzalez "I hope he contracts some rare third world disease in Singapore...'

FYI, SIngapore is not a "third world" country and she has one of the best medical and heath care in the world.
It's that same system that allows him to leave the US and save him tons of money. It's quite the good business decision. Which like is implied. Is the American thing to do. The new American move is to not be American. 
Second that motion i.e. Statement!!!
"What a greedy, shameless, ungrateful douchebag."
Extremely heavy on the DOUCHEBAG!!!!!
another reason to vote by action shutdown facebook
Harsh, and most people - American or not - would probably do the same as he did. Human nature is beyond country, border and culture. Some call it greed, others call it smart.

Sorry but my vote is that this kind of gregarious YOU OWE AMERICA 'patriotism' is ugly and lame.

Maybe he is planning to use the money he is saving from US taxes to build schools, hospitals and the like in developing countries around SEA? Maybe not. But if he was, would this song be sung the same way?

To me, if he used the money to invest in companies like Monsanto or projects that would deplete our environment or displace people from their own homes for corporate and capital interest - then that's being a greedy, ungrateful, douchebag.

Just IMHO.
He's greedy?! It's greedy to want so much of what he's earned. Liberty is what makes us great, not forking over large sums of money to a government that uses it to imprison tens of thousands of its citizens for no rational reason, drop bombs on third world countries under the guise of "protecting our freedom", and transfer it unwisely to people creating the sort of entitlement that is so loudly on display in this thread.
Just pay him in pesos or something, I agree, America was good enough for educating him, but not important enough to give back to the society that made it possible. I'm a fiscal and social conservative, but conveniently switching citizenship is wrong. 
And I thought facebook comments were bad...
+Abhisshek Das Yeah, they suck, too. I don't understand it when you talk about one thing, and people say: "why didn't you also talk about something else." No, I'm talking about this right now. It's not connected to anything else. I have no obligation to write a comprehensive review of all activity in the category of every subject I post on. This article is about tax dodger Eduardo Saverin and nothing else.
It cuts both ways. Australia gave you Rupert Murdoch :)
it is called putting something in context. You can´t bash this guy for using tactics to lower his tax rate when probably 90% of the Fortune 500 companies and most other rich people do similar things. Again, the freakin guy running for President has Swiss and Cayman bank accounts to avoid paying taxes. If anything, what this guy is doing is ´the american way´ for rich people to behave. You published an article looking for ´outrage´.. but for most of us, we realize it is just the norm and not that incredible.
just like #apple which claims to be in Nevada when it has to pay state taxes and claims to be in CA for R&D credits.
+Mike Elgan
Eduardo Sauverin is an idiot.
When he gets into trouble later, he would regret this.
There will be a lot of people around the world outside US who would risk dying to get US citizenship. There is no other country which goes to such lengths to protect its citizenship anywhere in the world. When you get such global benefits (you get to vote wherever you are), it is only natural to expect to pay taxes.
Switzerland is the better solution -
Everybody has access to our health system, pensions from which you can live, high salaries, no one must go to war and one of the most competitive countries in the world with a very high quality of living. And the roads are far better :))
So, were ALL the guys behind facebook uber douchebags...?
+Jens Graikowski If you mean the post immediately before mine, then no, I was not referring to you. Lots of people probably would be surprised what they would do for a few million dollars.
+Fawad Kazi The fact that he has the right to do something doesn't make it the right thing to do.
People seem to forget that the government produces nothing. The free market does.
I beg to differ +Nate Goddard People seem to ignore that government institutions keep us afloat and maintain our infastructure that allows us the stable environment to produce what government alone cannot. Both government and the free market belong together and neither should go unchecked.
Either way, with all that money, he should do something about those eyebrows.
He did absolutely right.
By the way, he was not educated for free at Harvard, and I am pretty sure he paid already enough taxes while he was in US. From 2009 he's out of the country anyway, so yes, he did absolutely right, I envy him and I would do the same in his shoes.
He risked his own $30k while he was in college on an investment that ended up making him a billionaire. So, you can say he's lucky. Or, you could say he invested in something in which he believed and made a return on that investment. Instead of focusing on him, and on punishing companies that take profits "overseas", let's focus on why they're taking them overseas. Address the issue at hand so we can create policies that incentivize them to keep their profits here in America.
Everyone has to make up their own mind to do what they want to do. He has been living in Singapore for at least 3 years. That means he has to not only pay taxes in both places, but also he has to complete tax returns in both places. I lived in the US for 15 years, and I can tell you that completing two different tax returns each year is a pain in the rear end. Also, two sets of accountants fees.

There are reciprocal arrangements with many countries, so you don't pay tax on the same money in both places.

None of us knows the reason he may be making the changes he wants to make, and none of you are qualified to beat him up about it. My dad, who wasn't religious, used to say "Let he who is without sin throw the first stone." I think it fits this case.
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