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South Korea pardons Samsung boss 'to help the economy'

By Claire LEE

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The heir and de facto leader of Samsung group received a presidential pardon Friday, the latest example of South Korea's long tradition of freeing business leaders convicted of corruption on economic grounds.

Sadly not only a South Korean tradition and I think that statement is discriminatory.

The Pandora and Panama Paper revelations show that massive tax fraud and corruption is rampant among oligarchs East and West.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Surprise surprise….NOT

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Another day in SK, another big swinging Richard gets off scot-free for being nothing more than a big swinging Richard.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

But analysts said the pardons simply allowed major businessmen to feel they were not "constrained by any legal norms", Vladimir Tikhonov, professor of Korean studies at the University of Oslo, told AFP.

Well, they feel that way because that is the reality. The government of SK is implicitly accepting they need the criminals to run their companies (as before) in order to maintain the economy.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Great photographic decisive moment.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Good for him. Imagine thinking that being placed in a cage under threat of physical violence for the 'crime' of not paying taxes, something you had no say in and no option to opt out of (slavery, anyone?), is a good thing.

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

As usual the story fails to mention the basic background info:

Lee was made to face the music by the previous President Moon, who belongs to the left-leaning party which aligns itself with the working class.

Then in the election a US-friendly conservative was elected (Yoon), and as this party is aligned with the corporate elite, it was only a matter of time before Lee was pardoned.

The truth is, not only has the Korean war between North and South never ended, in the South itself people remain bitterly divided. This can be traced to when the US entered the South at the end of WWII, and reinstated those elite Koreans to power who had collaborated with the Japanese from 1910-1945 to exploit and suppress the Korean people (in other words they aided Japan in their colonial administration of Korea). This immediately led to widespread resentment and distrust of the US; the resulting conflict between the general working population/farmers vs the US-aligned elite is what led to the imprisonment, torturing, and eventual execution of those who opposed (culminating in the Jeju massacre of 1948, in which 10% of the Jeju population were executed by US-trained ROK forces) is what led to the North sending their forces south in June 1950.


3 ( +4 / -1 )

So these criminals are the only people capable of leading these companies?

A better idea: seize their assets and break up Samsung so it’s portfolio of businesses can operate independently and properly compete in the market.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

“Business” as usual, in the Pacific.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Buy your way into jail, buy your way out. It's funny what money does.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Rich get out of jail for free. poorer grt poorer. So sad.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Basically this clearly demonstrates the deep corruption between the Chaebols and the Korean government. There is no way one company should represent 1/5 of any GDP anywhere. It is anti-competitive and incredibly corrupting of the government at all levels.

The Korean people know this has nothing to do with economic renewal and everything to do with corruption.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Sometimes there's no good excuse for your actions, but darn it I'm gonna do it anyways.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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