Neil is the CEO of Sevara Capital Advisors. He is passionate about solving tax, accounting and regulatory problems for institutions that have invested billions of dollars of capital in multiple jurisdictions. His company provides solutions for banks, insurance companies and hedge funds to tackle their problems related to tax returns, financial statements, accounting and internal finance matters. Neil holds a master’s degree in Law from the University of Cambridge.
Since tax reform passed at the end of 2017, the topic has been front and centre. The taxes at stake in the US amount to some $3.3trn at the Federal level and some $2.5trn at the state and local levels. Property taxes in 2017 amounted to $33bn. Because of tax reform, not all the taxes imposed at the state and local level, including property taxes, are deductible against Federal tax.
Peter Gregory, the character from the series, Silicon Valley, who most resembled Peter Thiel, was written out during season 1 because he died of a heart attack. Peter Thiel’s departure from Silicon Valley was – fortunately – for different reasons. Having taken a great deal of grief from the tech community for his support of Donald Trump, he decided that the climate of the place had become too one dimensional, too much of a bubble.
The words “another country” evoke themes on both sides of the Atlantic. It occupies the first line of the second (or third, depending on the version) stanza of the hymn, “I Vow to Thee My Country”, that was written in the aftermath of WWI. It is the title of a movie loosely based on the life of the British (Cambridge) spy Guy Burgess that explores themes of patriotism, class and sexuality. It is also the title of a movie based on the 1962 book by James Baldwin that explores the themes of sexuality and race in America. For someone of dual citizenship, with half a life spent in the UK and half in the US, the title taps a rich seam of conflicted thoughts and feelings about the ties that bind and how self can be subjugated to something greater than self.
The US is at once monolithic and factious. It has a federal administration as well as each state having their own separate government. Constitutionally, each of the fifty states and the US as a whole is a sovereign jurisdiction. Each state is structured with an executive, legislative and judicial branch and they have the power to make laws covering anything not preempted by the federal constitution, federal law or international treaties. The role of state governors is like that of the president of the US.
Is Elon Musk, a genius or fraud ? There are arguments for both. Musk has inspired envy for the undoubted achievements of manufacturing cool cars, domestic solar systems (including beautiful roof tiles), a reusable rocket system together with a host of ideas and products that are ambitious at times beyond credibility.