The Pardu

The Pardu
Watchful eyes and ears feed the brain, thus nourishing the brain cells.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Corporations are people????

The United States is reeling like a blade of tall grass in the prairie wind from the severe economic tsunami of the 2001 - 2007 Sub-prime bubble. The Inside Job....

Last fall the Obama Administration fought to the deadline on a deficit spending debt ceiling increase debacle.  The roots of the issue spread as far and meandering as a 100 year old White Oak Tree.  One critical root that I will refer top as a "mainroot" (for lack of a better term) is revenues for funding the nation.  Most Americans know the Executive and Legislative branches of our government have battled over personal income taxes, taxes on the nations Top 20 % income owners, and executive perks. We also know that most large corporations employ huge and very capable staff, or contract tax specialist to pay as little US tax as they can legally (and at times illegally) pay.  

Yet, we have a GOP presidential candidate who contends  US corporations are people (my friend).   The comment was as illustrative of the Romney's inner psyche as his offer to bet $10,000 dollars with a stumbling and momentarily flabbergasted debate opponent: Rick Perry. It is impossible to twist one's mind to a point of excreting a thought that a corporation is in any way should equate to 'people'.  Unless, you are one of the facilitating SCOTUS Justices who voted for corporations as entities with free speech.  Free speech for a state chartered entity that has a sole purpose of making a profit, return equity to shareholders or fund opulent compensation packages for executives. It is impossible to insert a bit of pessimism as I considered that the aforementioned is often attained at the expense of helpless-scrambling and totally dependent employees (real people).

Many corporations manage to eck-out favorable tax payments. Some manage to adroitly change their experience in ways that would even befubble the naive Forrest Gump.

Late last year and early in 2012 The Washington Post reported on the tax experience of a 280 large corporations.  Thirty of those companies have a tax experience that should induce your sitting back and wondering, "how did we get in this place"? 

The Washington Post....

Who’s not paying corporate taxes?

While the federal tax code calls for a 35 percent tax rate on corporations, many companies find ways to reduce their tax burden. In a study of corporate taxes of 280 companies, 30 of those paid less than zero in taxes in a three-year period from 2008 through 2010. Read related article.

Who’s not paying corporate taxes?

The Economist last November published an abbreviated perspective based on the same Citizens for Tax Justice and the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy data.  

Both articles are clear the tax loopholes from which the corporations literally add to their profit base via lowering taxes are legal.  Ah, and that makes all OK!   

It does not!  If our politicians are fighting over revenues, bickering about small tax cuts and increases for people (wealthy or poor) and the nation needs additional revenue, how is it rational to continue with IRS codes with such loopholes?

We remind that  few GOP presidential aspirants stood on debate stages and espoused a ZERO TAX RATE for corporations.  The executives who speak publicly about such craziness often say, less taxes creates jobs.  

Think Progress watch....

 Think Progress lays one such executive to the level of asinine and the argument for zero corporate tax to sick fantasy.

Cote’s belief that a low corporate tax rate will spur job creation stands at odds with the country’s current experience. After all, U.S. corporate taxes that were actually paid (the effective rate) fell to a 40-year-low in fiscal year 2011, despite corporate profits rebounding to their pre-Great Recession heights. The U.S. actually has one of the lowest effective corporate tax rates in the developed world. However, job creation has been slow, if steady. 
“Our corporate tax rate last year, effectively, in terms of taxes paid for the United States, was around 12 percent, which is well below those existing in most of the industrialized countries around the world,” explained billionaire investor Warren Buffet. “Corporate taxes are not strangling American competitiveness.” 
Cote made $37 million in total compensation in 2011, while spending the last few years busting unions and driving down pay and benefits for his company’s workers.

Question.  Wonder how many corporate tax departments would suffer major lay-offs, if the GOP had its wish for zero corporate tax?

Another question. Do you really believe a zero tax rate would support additional job creation?  History does not support that sophism. History does support the fact that the CEO would do much beyond give more opulent compensation on his executive team, or work with the Board of Directors on increasing his compensation package. 

I use the word "His" based on data indicating a minuet number of women CEOs.  Another Top 1 % fact.

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