American Corporations are all About Profits - Not People - Page 2
Google’s use of the “Double Irish” maneuver depends on shifting non-U.S. sales to its Dublin office — 88% of its $12.5 billion in 2009. This technique is also used by others, like Microsoft, and requires that they have two Irish companies (hence the “double”) where one pays royalties to the other which collects the proceeds in a tax haven, like Bermuda.
Make no mistake about it, the use of tax havens is commonplace in corporate America. Another GAO study reported that 83 of the 100 largest American companies have subsidiaries in tax havens. It’s estimated that through the use of such havens, corporations and wealthy individuals are able to evade more than $100 billion in U.S. taxes every year. ATT, GE, IBM, Chevron, they all participate in the dodge.
Even those companies with government contracts, like Boeing, and those who took government bailout money, like AIG, GM, Goldman Sachs and Citicorp play the game. The truth is that the evasion occurs on such a grand scale that 18,000 companies share a single address in the Cayman Islands, a popular haven because of its lack of any corporate or capital gains tax.
What should be done about all of this? Some people advocate the closing of loopholes to prevent such activities. Others suggest that completely eliminating corporate taxes and treating corporate profits as the individual income of its shareholders would be a superior remedy. But whatever the solution, the core truth of the situation remains evident — 21st Century corporations have no nationality.
Like it or not, we now live in a global economy. Billions of dollars in U.S. tax revenue is being hidden in foreign banks, and millions of American jobs have been offshored to foreign workers. American corporate profits are at an all-time high even while huge numbers of Americans are suffering. The sad truth is that American corporations have but one loyalty, and it’s not to our nation, nor is it to the American people; they are singularly focused on profits, and their only loyalty is to their shareholders.
There’s nothing really wrong with this specific truth. Corporations are legal fictions created for the purpose of making money. They are rightfully focused solely on profits. But there is something seriously wrong with assigning to these artificial entities the rights associated with being a person.Continued on the next page