Who Hijacked Our Country

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Heeyyy, How About Those Dodgers!

Tax Dodgers that is.

Obama is trying to fulfill a campaign promise to crack down on those sleazebuckets who hide their money in other countries. This crackdown would be accomplished with new tax laws, new reporting requirements and hundreds of new IRS agents

Obama said the way for America to stay competitive is “not to reward our companies for moving jobs off our shores or transferring profits to overseas tax havens.”

You’d expect Republicans to be having a tantrum about this proposal, but even a lot of Democrats are unenthusiastic. Senator Max Baucus (D-Montana) said: “Further study is needed to assess the impact of this plan on U.S. businesses.”

I don’t agree with the Far Left mantra that “there’s no difference between the two parties.” But this is the kind of bullshit that reinforces that belief.

Obama says the current tax law rewards multinational corporations at the expense of companies that only do business in America: “It's a tax code that says you should pay lower taxes if you create a job in Bangalore, India, than if you create one in Buffalo, New York.”

He also wants to eliminate the current “check the box” rule, which goes back to Clinton’s presidency. This rule makes it easy for companies to transfer cash from one country to another — i.e. from the higher-tax country where they’re actually doing business, to a tax haven in Bermuda or the Cayman Islands.

Obama’s tax proposal will also make permanent the existing tax credit that companies are getting when they spend money on domestic research and development.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Business Roundtable and some of America’s largest corporations are trying to derail this tax reform. What’d you expect?

cross-posted at Bring It On!



Anonymous Bee said...


Oh, sorry, was still in "right-winger" mode there, haha.

They'll fight it to their dying breaths, because dog forbid that Exxon and Walmart have to pay a few more bucks in taxes.

May 5, 2009 at 3:59 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Bee: Yes indeed, it's the end of the world. It's Socialism! Class Warfare!

May 5, 2009 at 4:19 PM  
Blogger The Rambling Taoist said...

There's no way such a bill will ever pass! Neither party will support it because it would dampen corporate campaign contributions.

Obama knows this. In fact, I'm sure he's told all of his corporate contributors not to worry because this stand of his is all for show. (wink, wink)

May 5, 2009 at 11:09 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

TRT: Don't forget now, the bearer of bad news is perceived as the "villain." I do hope you're wrong, but I'm afraid you're probably right.

May 5, 2009 at 11:14 PM  
Anonymous Thomas said...

Mind you, this whole phenomenon is symptomatic of the fact that we've allowed our corporations to grow out of control.

Corporations, which have now grown so large and have interests in so many countries that they are effectively above all modes of regulation, need to be very tightly regulated. They need to be kept on a short, tight and noose-like leash.

May 6, 2009 at 7:21 AM  
Anonymous JollyRoger said...

If the Chamber of Commerce is against it, it has to be a good thing. Their track record is almost perfect.

May 6, 2009 at 7:48 AM  
Blogger Randal Graves said...

Oh sure there's a difference. One is evil, one is Cheney-esque. ;-)

I for one am glad it won't pass because once you enact Socialism®, jobs never get created.

May 6, 2009 at 8:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

During a debate. McCain spelled out that US corporate Taxes are the highest in the world and promised if elected to cut corporate taxes. Obama countered with a government report that had just come out the other day and found US corporations skirted around the tax laws so much they wound up paying almost nothing!

He wont get it all done, but if he could concentrate on the Cayman island example - where a corporation sets up a mailbox and gets to call it a world HQ thereby ducking millions in US taxes and then piggyback on more of the outrageous examples like that. I think he can get some things done.

The two best books on this are written by NY Times reporter David Cay Johnston "perfectly legal" and "free lunch"!


May 6, 2009 at 2:24 PM  
Blogger Demeur said...

All Obama has to do is threaten to expose companies that pay no U.S. or foreign taxes.

In other news I hear they aren't going after the Bush thugs who legalized torture. I can only hope that the Spanish will step up to the plate and make this an international issue.

May 6, 2009 at 3:10 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Thomas: You're right, this tax issue is just a symptom (one of many). Corporations started getting out of control sometime in the late 1800s (maybe earlier), and they've been growing like a snowball rolling downhill ever since then.

JR: True, the Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers both have an almost 100% track record for Republican candidates and causes.

Randal: Or as the wingnuts are always saying, "government can't create wealth!"

Erik: I remember that debate. I'm sure Obama won't get the whole package he wants, but cracking down on those tax shelters is too important. A corporate "headquarters" being just a P.O. box in the Cayman Islands -- that shit has to end.

I've seen excerpts from those 2 books. There's even a rightwing website whose only purpose is to diss David Cay Johnston. I think you showed me that, come to think of it.

Demeur: I hope Obama will do that if push comes to shove. I'm sure he has public opinion on his side.

That would be nice if Spain stepped up to the plate. It happened to Pinochet when he went to Spain; it shouldn't be any different for Dumbya.

May 6, 2009 at 3:27 PM  
Anonymous S.W. anderson said...

Good comments, all, so I will refrain from a me-tooer.

I will add that it's past time for someone with a lot of clout — besides lobbyists and corporate PACs — to lean on Baucus really hard. Somehow, Harry Reid doesn't seem likely to try it, much less get very far if he were to try. I'm thinking Rahm Emmanuel.

May 6, 2009 at 7:50 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

SW: From what I know about both of them, Rahm Emmanuel is definitely more skillful at arm twisting, or, I mean "persuasion," than Reid.

May 6, 2009 at 8:03 PM  
Anonymous kate said...

It would be great if we could actually clamp down on corporations and the ways they dodge paying their fair share of taxes. However, my concern is, corporations have SO much money, and SO much power, and SO many people( in the USA and across the world) in the palms of their hands, that I fear they will still have the knowhow & cooperation to continue with what they are doing. and the hundreds of new IRS agents will simply be giving the average citizen even more grief and hassles than now.

May 7, 2009 at 8:55 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Kate: That's a very valid concern, that the IRS will be able to audit working people more closely than ever while the VIPs continue to sleaze their way out of paying.

These changes need to be made, but it'll be an uphill battle.

May 7, 2009 at 2:27 PM  

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