“Opinion seems to be divided as to whether Apple’s tax avoidance schemes are a good thing or a bad thing,” Roger Kay writes for Forbes. “Free-marketers assert that Apple is doing everything it should, and exploiting our Byzantine tax laws is what it’s all about.”
MacDailyNews Take: Are you sure about those two statements, Roger? Divided how, exactly? 50-50, or 70-30, or 90-10? What about those “free-marketers” who’d like to, you know, clean up the Byzantine tax laws so that they make economic sense for a change? You know, like Tim Cook advocates?
“Certainly the shareholders (when they’re not being consumers of public services) would agree. Cook argued for a friendlier tax regime and said he’d repatriate his profits if the tax rate on foreign earnings were a ‘single-digit number,’ instead of 35%, and suggested, rather boldly in my view, that a tax rate on U.S. domestic earnings would be easier to bear if it were in the ‘mid 20s,'” Kay writes. “But here’s the thing: our government needs money to run its operations. The recent sequester has taken a bite out of vital services across the board.”
MacDailyNews Take: Really, Roger? Does “our government” really need more money to run its operations or does “our government” maybe, just maybe, need to rein in some of “its operations,” in order to live within some remote semblance of realistic means?
Here, maybe some hard numbers will cut through Roger’s simpering sludge: Apple paid $6 billion last year in taxes to the U.S. federal government. U.S. Federal spending in FY 2012, from CBO data, was $3.539 trillion. That’s $9.836 billion in U.S. Federal spending per day.
In other words, Apple, the world’s most valuable company and the U.S.A.’s #1 corporate taxpayer, funded “our government” for 14.64 hours last year.
Can you say “out-of-control monster,” Roger?
Kay plows on, “Let me make a suggestion. Apple could repatriate this year, say, $2 billion of its $100 billion in overseas retained earnings and pay $700 million in tax on it. The firm would get $1.3 billion in after-tax money, which could be used for investment or dividend payout, and the government would get some much-needed tax receipts to run for the benefit of everyone. And most of Apple’s overseas powder would still be dry.”
MacDailyNews Take: We congratulate Roger for miraculously having achieved gray hair without the benefit of accumulating even a shred of noticeable wisdom. Any random six-year-old is less naive.
Since you haven’t noticed the obvious: The U.S. federal government is a bottomless pit. It always wants more. It can never be sated. Like those morbidly obese 1,000+ pound people Jerry Springer used to cut out of their houses, the government needs to hear the word “no,” for a change.
“No, poor soul, just look at yourself, you’ve had more than enough. You make Mr. Creosote look anorexic.”
If Apple paid even more tax, we’d quite likely have to pay even more, too.
Bottom line: The extra $700 million in Apple-contributed tax receipts as per your painfully facile suggestion, Roger, would power the U.S. federal government for an additional 1 hour, 42 minutes, and 29 seconds.
Kay continues, “I think our government should be financed. By people who make a lot of money. Like Apple.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Hoo Boy. This has to be satire, right?
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