Starbucks wins, Fiat loses, Apple kept guessing in EU tax grab rulings

Stephanie Bodoni for Bloomberg:

Starbucks Corp. won a court fight and a Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV unit lost one over European Union tax orders in decisions that left lawyers puzzling over the impact on Apple Inc.’s chances of toppling a record 13 billion-euro ($14.3 billion) bill.

Even though the amounts at stake in Tuesday’s rulings — about 30 million euros each for Starbucks and Fiat — aren’t huge, lawyers are now poring over the judgments ahead of multiple appeals as companies, including the iPhone maker, counter EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager’s five-year crackdown on allegedly unfair tax deals… The EU General Court in Luxembourg said Tuesday that the EU failed to show that coffee giant Starbucks obtained an unfair tax deal by the Netherlands. The judges threw out a similar challenge by Fiat over its fiscal arrangements in Luxembourg…

In the Apple case, the EU said Ireland illegally reduced the company’s tax bill, a finding Apple and Irish officials don’t accept.

Apple declined to comment Tuesday beyond pointing to its remarks in a hearing in its own appeal at the same court last week. It told judges it’s “now paying around 20 billion euros in tax in the U.S. on the very same profits that the Commission says should also have been taxed in Ireland.”

MacDailyNews Take: A glimmer of hope that the EC’s insane Apple tax grab will be barred?

There was no special deal that we cut with Ireland. We simply followed the laws in the country over the 35 years that we have been in Ireland. If the question is, was there ever a ‘quid pro quo’ that we were trying to strike with the Irish government – that was never the case. We’ve always been very transparent with the Irish government that we wanted to be a good corporate citizen.Apple CFO Luca Maestri, September 2014

44 Comments

  1. Gee, whiz, the outcome of lawsuits depends on the facts of the particular case. Who’d have thunk it?

    I’ve given up on pointing out that the implication that this is a “grab” motivated by EU greed ignores the fact that the European Commission triggered this very expensive litigation without any possibility of receiving a single euro beyond reimbursement of its legal costs. This is America, and words have increasingly lost their meaning when there is an opportunity to bash foreigners.

    1. “I’ve given up on pointing out that the implication that this is a “grab” motivated by EU greed”

      Good, we look forward to your silence on this subject. Somehow, I just don’t believe you.

      “Are the smallest ignores the fact that the European Commission triggered this very expensive litigation without any possibility of receiving a single euro beyond reimbursement of its legal costs.”

      Totally manufactured greedy “TAX GRAB” by the E.U. in the holy name of tax equality. Only liberal socialist policy decision makers are DUMB enough to treat every company (Apple largest in history) and every sovereign EU country (Ireland one of the smallest) the SAME. The perennial problem with equality socialism.

      The socialist idealistic notion that everyone and everything should be treated the same has proven throughout history as an uneven fantasy. This “TAX GRAB” falls into the same category…

      1. Around here where I live, on uttering indefensible nonsense, folk will say…
        “What are you like”. It’s rhetorical, an smh, it’s the polite way of telling you that you’re full of sh*te, an irrelevancy.
        For the life of me, I cannot imagine a world where equality and fairness are ‘failures’; where untamed corporate power justifies suppression of the little guy and the struggle to deal a straight hand for all is somehow an undesirable ‘fantasy’.
        So…GoeB
        What are you like.

        1. I never said “equality and fairness are failures.”

          Quite the contrary, they are admirable goals.

          That said, the E.U. is concocting a contrived “TAX GRAB” that is anything but fair and balanced.

          A contrived shameless controversy…

          1. One would very much like to know how equality and fairness under the law — and yes, that means equal opportunity for all, both current and future generations — would be achieved in any way under the policies that you and your orange idol support. Both corrupt parties are in it for themselves, we get it, but you openly support corrupt Trumpian practices that, if unchecked, will lead to ruin. Most economists don’t dare mention bankruptcy, the favorite tactic of the Liar in Chief, but they all predict that drunken deficit spending, the worst in history under this administration, will unavoidably result in massive federal tax increases in the future. Is that fair? How about the state of infrastructure across the nation — it’s a mess. What kind of bills to update aging infrastructure or restoring ecosystems destroyed by prior reckless business interests are you handing your kids? Greta T. wasn’t wrong when she stated this is not at all fair. Her generation might be the first in recorded human history where opportunity and health and longevity may be more limited than the prior generation. Think about that. Oceans 30% more acidic, 3 billion birds lost in the last 50 years. Polar ice now receding at rates that will put major parts of Tokyo and NYC under water in under a century, not to mention massive increases in storm damage every year. Burning billions of tons of hydrocarbons every year for the last ~3 centuries couldn’t possibly have any impact, right? So you support Trump’s crude attempts to dial back environmental protections on all fronts. You can’t even swim in most lakes and rivers in the US today, why would you allow more pollution? How the hell is that great? Why wouldn’t you sign a worldwide agreement that would put a greater onus on China and India to step up to a global standard?

            So what would be fair, Goeb? Current Trump policies in other issues are a mess too. Quite the opposite of making the US strong, a xenophonic stance and heated anti-immigrant, anti-muslim rhetoric weakens US defense by virtue of self-imposed diplomatic losses and increased resentment worldwide. Money wasted on a Great Wall cannot be used for previously-contracted military improvements. Why is that good? Weakened citizen representation occurs when you are promoting party before country, single-party rule, gerrymandering, etc. In representation, your orange bozo and his supporters think the US should have less checks and balances than the EU or any modern western republic. He personally hires only the best fixers, sending personal lawyers like that idiot Guiliani to drum up some dirt mob style. Nice. That’s unconstitutional, but you don’t care.

            Economically, the current administration’s cash drain has eclipsed the bipartisan bailout costs from the Bush Wars and Bush Implosion of 2008. “Socialist” farm bailouts doled out by Trump are costing double what automaker loans were under Obama. The trickle-down 2017 tax cut didn’t work, the short term sugar high is now giving way to the worst budget deficit ever. The US is careening towards losing its middle class as corporate giveaways enrich the few while small businesses and workers are given tax increases cleverly wrapped in a patriotic-sounding label: tariffs. If and when interest rates ever return to what most economists consider to be healthy territory, the real borrowing costs will eat an unprecedented chunch of the national budget. International dictators laugh at Trump. No international deals have been signed, no arms reductions, nothing at all to make the US more secure. US corporations, already sitting on piles of cash, are buying back their own stock rather than building any new factories in the US of A. Can you name one thing Apple has done differently under Trump than they did under Obama, other than perhaps a few more awkward Tim Apple photo ops?

            I do wonder why you can’t come up with a more honest presidential candidate than Trump. It’s clear that equal and fair aren’t part of his agenda. Tell me all about how you give a shit about fairness or equality. Your whining about tax rates belies your true beliefs. You’d elect Charles Manson as president if he promised you a tax cut, just like you will continue to come here and worship Apple, which is responsible for the biggest Chinese trade deficit of any US based company and, at least to some people, has swindled more Americans out of jobs than any other company. Apple isn’t changing, but you and your orange fuhrer wannabe are giving Apple a free pass. Is that fair?

            1. Wow!

              What a tedious volume of fiction. No matter, easy to deal with and moving on.

              “that means equal opportunity for all, both current and future generations — would be achieved in any way under the policies that you and your orange idol support.”

              You just can’t help yourself, Mike. You pontificate on equality and justice and yet the HATE in your heart REMAINS for our distinguished president with record economic numbers. You and your ilk are in DEEP DENIAL and refuse to ACKNOWLEDGE. Well, we don’t need your approval.

              “they all predict that drunken deficit spending, the worst in history under this administration, will unavoidably result in massive federal tax increases in the future.”

              Two questions.

              What year was the last time the federal budget was balanced and under what President?
              What President during his term in office DOUBLED the national debt more than 43 presidents before him combined?

              Don’t care? Crickets? : : : : :

              Your juvenile name calling aside, we are talking about E.U. taxation of Apple. Let me repeat to penetrate that thick skull: Your juvenile name calling aside, we are talking about E.U. taxation of Apple.

              Your off the charts political deflection volume of fiction diatribe aside, let’s stay on topic, shall we.

              When you wake up from the lib la la land dream of equality, you will realize it is not a universal truth applied to all situations in life. The reality is everyone is equal in some ways and unequal in others.

              Again, the deflection topic is not the strong leadership of President Trump. The topic is the “TAX GRAB” of the E.U. manufactured in the holy name of equality.

              Apple can pay the penalty with profits earned in a few weeks. If Apple PULLED OUT operations from E.U. tax grabbing countries, only then they will learn their mistake…

            2. This is in response to Mike.

              “Pure capitalism is an unsustainable train wreck. There has to be a hand on the throttle, and regulators need to be accountable to the citizens — NOT the capitalists.”

              “Pure capitalism” has been going on since the beginning of time. The “hand on the throttle” that you are clueless to recognize is tax status of companies that follow the law and pay all taxes as prescribed by law. Get a grip, no business boogeyman here.”

              “But to hear right-wingers like Goeb talk, he thinks that international cooperation is always bad.”

              Wrong one: I have posted more than a dozen times I am a FIERCE REGISTERED INDEPENDENT VOTER. Wrong two: Never said “international cooperation is always bad.” You have a bad habit of putting words in people’s mouth that disagree with you.

              Now, on to address your volume of fiction.

              “Goeb Fantasy land:
              – Corporate profit grabs with minimal oversight: good”

              Don’t appreciate you putting words in my mouth, NEVER SAID THAT! Hard working corporations making profits following all laws is always a good thing.

              “– Government nonprofit work for the public good (like streets and sewers): bad”

              Don’t appreciate you putting words in my mouth, NEVER SAID THAT!

              “– Government crony capitalism to enrich the military-industrial complex and multinational non-democratic corporations: good”

              Don’t appreciate you putting words in my mouth, NEVER SAID THAT!

              “– Cooperative problem solving by democratic nations: bad”

              Don’t appreciate you putting words in my mouth, NEVER SAID THAT!

              “– Representative government with all minorities represented: bad

              Don’t appreciate you putting words in my mouth, NEVER SAID THAT!

              “– Trump dominated single-party rule, with zero personal accountability and infinite “executive privilege”: good”

              Don’t appreciate you putting words in my mouth, NEVER SAID THAT!

              “– Rule of law: good only when Goeb can make that law and profit from it”

              I have the power to make laws and profit? Wow, news to me I better get cracking.

              “– Special exemptions for certain government-sanctioned businesses over other businesses: good”

              This is what your socialist liberalism does not understand. Not all businesses should be treated the same. If you don’t understand the difference, just ask the IRS.

              “– Tax revenue that doesn’t come close to covering the real costs that the public incurs: good”

              WTF are you complaining about?

              “– Congress following constitutional process to investigate corruption: bad unless the accused is from the other party”

              Works both ways.

              “– Ability for a foreign corporation to make sweetheart tax avoidance deals that no other company, foreign or domestic, can have:”

              Your over the top blind hubris attempts to speak for ALL COMPANIES ALL TIME?

              “good, as long as that company is Apple”

              Apple entered the best legal deal negotiated for the company with sovereign Ireland. Obvious the socialist E.U. disagrees. We shall see.

              “This isn’t projection, this is literally what Goeb has promoted in various ways for years on this tech forum, with full complicity by stevejack.”

              What the hell are you talking about? For years I have advocated common sense solutions to problems.

              “Of course Goeb won’t own up to it, seeing all his extreme positions listed in one place is shocking even to him.”

              Talk about EXCESSIVE HUBRIS. I do not have an obligation to own up to your libtard fantasy.

              “The only thing THAT IS “shocking” is what a psychotic unprincipled ill-informed individual Goeb is.”

              What is “shocking” is the false bloviated DRAMA QUEEN named Mike…

          2. Please explain again how a policy against any government subsidies to individual businesses that would prevent rival companies from competing successfully in a free market is socialism. Protecting markets from government interference is about as capitalist as can be. Protecting Europe from soviet socialism by preventing nation-state rivalries from disturbing the peace was the whole point of the EU and its predecessor organizations back to 1951. Every country that formed or joined the Union, including Ireland, understood that.

            Again, I am not prejudging the Apple case, because I don’t know all the facts. The law, however, is very clear and it is diametrically opposed to your alternative of allowing the member states to pick individual companies for favorable treatment. Seventy-four years of peace in Western Europe supports the wisdom of that policy.

            1. So much for remaining SILENT. That one was very easy to disbelieve.

              “Protecting Europe from soviet socialism by preventing nation-state rivalries from disturbing the peace was the whole point of the EU and its predecessor organizations back to 1951.”

              Protecting Europe from Soviet socialism by creating European socialism, well, I fail to see much difference. Socialism is well intentioned, but a FAILURE throughout history wherever and whenever it is tried.

              “The law, however, is very clear and it is diametrically opposed to your alternative of allowing the member states to pick individual companies for favorable treatment.”

              Yes, socialism has serious flaws. Treating the richest and largest company in history like the local mom and pop bakery on the verge of bankruptcy, is not exactly smart.

              You yourself in the past defended Apple receiving tax breaks in North Carolina arguing the virtues of employment numbers and the positive economic impact locally.

              But not so in the Ireland. Got it. Instead your liberal leanings of E.U. socialism is your governance goal, so no criticism of E.U. in general.

              Got it. I DISAGREE…

            2. If you “fail to see a difference between” living in Sweden and Stalinist Russia, you have a problem. The Scandinavian countries hardly represent a failure, much less FAILURE, social democracies though they be. Their people are happier and healthier than the average American.

              You seem to think that big corporations should get better government treatment than mom and pop businesses. There is a word for political systems that closely ally capitalism with state authoritarianism: fascist.

              I do not see a contradiction between allowing state and local governments in the US to offer tax incentives and recognizing that Europe made a different choice in the light of experiencing three major wars between 1870 and 1939, all sparked in large part by unlimited national competition.

            3. Bravo, TXUser!

              It boggles the mind how some people can’t admit that they live in a mixed economy with both socialist and capitalist organizations. No successful modern nation is anywhere near the extremes. Pure capitalism is an unsustainable train wreck. There has to be a hand on the throttle, and regulators need to be accountable to the citizens — NOT the capitalists. Otherwise it’s a rapid trip over the cliff for everyone.

              Even more sad is the return of isolationism, another unworkable model. Nobody prospers inside walls. World trade has benefitted the USA more than any other nation by far. But to hear right-wingers like Goeb talk, he thinks that international cooperation is always bad.

              Goeb Fantasy land:
              – Corporate profit grabs with minimal oversight: good
              – Government nonprofit work for the public good (like streets and sewers): bad
              – Government crony capitalism to enrich the military-industrial complex and multinational non-democratic corporations: good
              – Cooperative problem solving by democratic nations: bad
              – Representative government with all minorities represented: bad
              – Trump dominated single-party rule, with zero personal accountability and infinite “executive privilege”: good
              – Rule of law: good only when Goeb can make that law and profit from it
              – Special exemptions for certain government-sanctioned businesses over other businesses: good
              – Tax revenue that doesn’t come close to covering the real costs that the public incurs: good
              – Congress following constitutional process to investigate corruption: bad unless the accused is from the other party
              – Ability for a foreign corporation to make sweetheart tax avoidance deals that no other company, foreign or domestic, can have: good, as long as that company is Apple

              This isn’t projection, this is literally what Goeb has promoted in various ways for years on this tech forum, with full complicity by stevejack. Of course Goeb won’t own up to it, seeing all his extreme positions listed in one place is shocking even to him. What a psychotic unprincipled ill-informed individual Goeb is.

            4. No, you have the problem. Socialism of every variety is an UNEVEN FAILURE.

              Treating all companies the same is a liberal FANTASY. You contribute more you deserve more consideration. You employ more people you deserve more consideration. You pay more taxes than anyone else in history you deserve more consideration.

              Success RULES. Not some FANTASY OF libtard equality…

            5. Mike, have you noticed how many people who reject real science (evolution, vaccines, warming, etc.) are enthusiastic supporters of pseudo-sciences like Social Darwinism (the rich deserve to get richer, while the poor deserve to get poorer)? If women or minority members are chronically underpaid, it must be because they are less deserving. If every other developed nation has lower maternal and infant mortality rates, it must be because they are letting poor—and therefore undeserving— patients live. Arms dealers should be given free rein, because they are rich and most soldiers and “collateral damage” are poor. Europe needs to compete itself into another world war, because the most fit will survive… if anyone does. Social Darwinism lives. Or is it just selfishness? I’m not sure.

            6. @Mike, TxUser
              It’s an unfair contest really – reality v GoeB. His desperately poor education/knowledge/factual denial is easily shot to pieces yet he keeps on digging. A veritable Trump ‘mini me’ driven by a swollen ego
              What is he like.

    2. It is ironic that the EU is more responsible to citizens of its member nations than the corrupt political parties are to US citizens. The rabid right doesn’t even attempt to hide it anymore. To hear Goeb And Friends narrate it, they want Trump as dictator, powerless one party puppets in Congress, and a the courts packed with mysogynist christian zealots and theocrat judges. They further want to deport anyone who doesn’t look and act exactly like they do. That is their vision of Great.

      1. “The rabid right doesn’t even attempt to hide it anymore.”

        Hide what exactly? You have it backwards the rabid left doesn’t even attempt to hide it anymore.

        “To hear Goeb And Friends narrate it, they want Trump as dictator, powerless one party puppets in Congress, and a the courts packed with mysogynist christian zealots and theocrat judges.”

        Never said I support President Trump as a dictator. You and your ilk have serious problems putting words in other people’s mouths.

        The left has no problem packing the courts with liberals that thumb their nose at the Constitution and you would agree.

        But you have a problem with President Trump appointing judges that follow the Constitution and are fair and balanced to everyone regardless of political affiliation. Tell me who is the extremist here?

        “They further want to deport anyone who doesn’t look and act exactly like they do. That is their vision of Great.”

        The level of your biased stupidity is off the charts…

        1. The incessant lies, Goeb. You aren’t even pretending to serve the long term interests of all the people for the long run. Listen to any extreme right winger and 3 themes will immediately emerge:

          1 the world outside my wall, or field of vision, can go to hell as long as I can profit in the short term
          2 there should be no rule of law unless “me and my party” (sic) make the laws and selectively enforce them
          3 dissent is unpatriotic no matter what the Constitution says. If you’re not with my party (and even if you are) then we will ostracise you with a litany of ridiculous labels whenever you question the party propaganda. Anything less than a fidelity pledge to Dear Leader (party before all else), and the spin machine will go on the attack. Bone Spurs Trump attacking McCain, for example.

          By the way, while you’re making excuses for your party’s corruption, falsely claiming the economy has never been better, let’s look who is taking the profits:

          https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/income-inequality-reached-highest-level-ever-recorded-in-2018-2019-9-1028559996

          Did the trickle down 2017 tax bill work for all Americans? No. Everyone appreciates full employment but that employment is mostly dead-end low wage jobs. Where is the worker retraining? Why is consumer debt outpacing salary growth? Why are CEOs — especially outsourcing experts like Tim Apple — being rewarded with compensation that is 280 times that of the average US Apple employee?

          https://www.marketwatch.com/story/how-trumps-economy-went-from-rocket-ship-to-lead-balloon-2019-09-27?mod=hp_econ

          You might say, well it doesn’t matter, because the pie is growing and everyone will someday be prosperous when the trickle down comes. Dream on. Did Lyin’ Donny deliver 4, 5, 6% GDP growth as famously claimed on the campaign trail? No, the GDP peaked at 3.2% in Q2 2018 (sugar high) and has declined ever since. Many economists predict a recession due to trade spats that Donny initiated which have all failed to bear any fruit. In 2015, a year before Liar In Chief darkened the door of the White House, his core supporters were in full whine mode about consistent 2.5 to 4% growth year after year after year since 2009. Who is going to suffer the most in a recession if it happens? I assure you it won’t be Moscow Mitch, Saint VP Mike, or any of the Trump mob.

          The cult needs to grow a spine and select an honest presidential candidate, just as the idiot leftists need to learn some fiscal sanity.

          You , Goeb, have been nothing but an attack dog for Trump since the con man announced his candidacy. Take your blinders off and see how badly you have been taken. And stop attempting to cast me, an independent fiscal conservative and socially moderate voter, as being “liberal”. Everyone on the planet is left of you because you are as extreme right as they come.

  2. GoeB, i see that you have contracted the Trump disease of incessant capitalization and the use of catch words and phrases (tax grab).

    You have griped and pontificated on taxation for years. What you have failed to do is to explain how “tax cut and spend” is superior to other strategies. You have also failed to explain why excessive Federal deficits no longer matter.

    Far too many people have settled into the “taxes are evil” and “taxation is theft” camps without being willing to sacrifice any of the services that they receive from the government. In recent decades, almost every GOP POTUS has enacted massive tax cuts in combination with massive spending increases (generally on DOD), and the result has been rising deficits and huge economic crashes. The exception to that rule is George H.W. Bush, and his own party disinherited him as a traitor because of some pragmatic tax adjustments. He was by far the most qualified GOP POTUS in decades and his own party tanked his reelection.

    Get a clue on life. End the persecution complex. End the deep state conspiracy obsession. End the twisted mindset that lies and corruption are acceptable as long as they promote the GOP causes. This has to stop.

    1. “You have griped and pontificated on taxation for years. What you have failed to do is to explain how “tax cut and spend” is superior to other strategies. You have also failed to explain why excessive Federal deficits no longer matter.”

      The U.S. treasury has not balanced the federal budget since 1969. Every president of both parties carried a deficit since then.

      You have failed to explain why President Obama has doubled the deficit in less than four years more than 43 presidents before him combined.

      Get a grip and get real KingDeflection…

          1. …and you don’t care, Goeb. You keep supporting the most reckless spender in modern history.

            Oh, we know you will blame the prior non-GOP administrations, but anyone with a brain can see the truth. Both parties are entirely corrupt now.

            In postwar peacetime, great presidents like Eisenhower burned down the debts of WW2. Debt fell to less than 30% of US GDP.

            Then OPEC embargoes and huge increases in military spending during the waning days of the cold war bumped up US debt to 45% of GDP.

            After Gorby did tear down that wall during the G.W. Bush administration, fiscal responsibility slowly crept back into the political discourse and with the PC boom of the 1990s, US debt fell back to about 30% of US GDP.

            Then all hell broke loose. The 2001 terror attack hurt the economy, and the US started 2 overseas wars, cut corporate taxes, and enacted Medicare Part D while doing nothing to regulate increasingly complex Wall Street games while Dubya declared Mission Accomplished. The bottom of the economy fell out in 2008-2009 and BOTH PARTIES supported massive deficit spending to stimulate the economy. While that massive debt was entirely disgusting to some of us, it did in fact pull the world out of a great recession and led to a decade of economic growth. So one would expect that it would be a perfect time to pay down accrued debts, right Goeb? Isn’t that what Candidate Trump promised? Exactly the opposite is happening. This corrupt administration is carrying the highest deficit ever, increasing the accrued debt faster than Obama or any prior peacetime administration. Trump presides over a debt that is currently 77% of GDP and rising fast. That’s double the debt that FDR ran when his New Deal programs beat down the Great Depression. That’s 2.5 times what Lincoln incurred when winning the Civil War.

            In actual terms, Don The Con will add 7-8 trillion dollars to the US debt. Keeping the tradition of exponential debt growth by both corrupt parties since 1980.

            Why do you support such reckless fiscal leaders while attempting to put all blame on the other side of the aisle, Goeb? Intellectual dishonesty?

            1. No, don’t speak for me and put words in my mouth, Mike. Of course I care.

              Correcting your false extrapolations and one sided arguments:

              “You keep supporting the most reckless spender in modern history.”

              WRONG. The most reckless spender in history is not the 45th President Trump. That title belongs to President Obama who DOUBLED the national debt more than ALL 43 President’s before him combined. And what were the results. Record deficits, record poverty numbers, record food stamps, anemic GDP growth, high unemployment, no magic wand and adjust to the new normal of lowered economic expectations Obama famously said, I could go on.

              The first chart is fake news on the conclusion and accurate on the cause. No surprise, CNBC is famous for projected fabrications presented as fact. Look at the year 2010 when accurately presented the debt surged. See above that would be Obama for next seven years. Now look at 2019 and the 77% figure. False for anyone assuming that is ALL on Trump. Then we have broken dashed lines crystal ball projections stretching to 2030 11 years before anything happened in reality. How gullible can one be?

              NEXT: “The bottom of the economy fell out in 2008-2009 and BOTH PARTIES supported massive deficit spending to stimulate the economy. While that massive debt was entirely disgusting to some of us, it did in fact pull the world out of a great recession and led to a decade of economic growth.”

              Yes, because of the Dodd-Frank bill that spawned irresponsible real estate lending and subsequent foreclosures the 1990s housing boom collapsed. But let’s compare how much Obama raised the national debt compared to Trump, dollar for dollar. Let’s also look closely at which president got more bang for the debt spending buck comparing 8 years in office to 2.75 years. Lastly, let’s also consider all the economic numbers under both presidents, record highs and lows. Without going into tedious detail on stock market records and 50 year low employment rate to name two, the bottom line is for less debt money spent and years in office, Trump wins hands down setting several record economic numbers. As I posted above, Obama also posted record economic numbers, mostly not good, right Mike?

              NEXT: “Keeping the tradition of exponential debt growth by both corrupt parties since 1980.”

              Correct on both parties, but totally WRONG on 1980. The last time the U.S. government balanced the federal budget was in 1969. National debt has been growing since then.

              LASTLY: “Why do you support such reckless fiscal leaders while attempting to put all blame on the other side of the aisle, Goeb? Intellectual dishonesty?”

              You want to talk dishonesty, need to ask yourself why you continue to put out cherry picked half-truth OPINIONS? The second comic colored cartoon chart you posted is even more dishonest than the first with zero credibility. No sources, no attribution – where did you find it, Mad magazine? The red bar for Trump is yet another projection 27 months out that DID NOT HAPPEN. What part of this do you not understand?

              Your talk of “dishonesty” is laughable…

            2. Goeb: you do realize that presidents inherit the budget from the prior year, right? The 2009 budget was Bush’s, not Obama’s. Several rounds of bailouts were issued in 2008-2009 with support of both corrupt parties. From 2010-2017, the size of the budget deficit steadily shrank, slowly but surely. In 2017, the GOP attempted to stimulate the economy with a trickle-down tax bill. The sugar high wore off in less than a year and GDP growth this year has been no better than it was for the prior decade — only not the actual budget deficit is greater than at any other time in history. Period. That is undebatable fact. How many billion in socialism did farmers receive so far this year? Why is deficit spending on that and GOP-supported bank bailouts a decade ago the fault of a president that inherited the steepest recession since the 1930’s? You are brainwashed, Goeb. Both parties are spendaholics – the difference is, the democrats at least spend the money inside US borders and tax enough to pay for what the citizens demand. Republicans start Bush offensive quagmire wars, Reagan’s Star Wars, Iran Contra boondoggles, Gitmo and other foreign military installations where the USA doesn’t need to be. All on your taxpayer dime.

              I can’t put words in your mouth, it’s already got your foot in it.

              Are you unable to post verifiable facts to support your ridiculous opinions, Goeb?

      1. Goeb, the problem is that you are so partisan that you can’t even imagine ever working with anyone who doesn’t align perfectly with your deep-ingrained opinions. And they are opinions.

        It is the duty of all of us to realize the truth:

        Your party is just as corrupt as the other. The sooner you wake up and realize it, the sooner we can have constructive debate designed to solve real problems.

        1. “Goeb, the problem is that you are so partisan that you can’t even imagine ever working with anyone who doesn’t align perfectly with your deep-ingrained opinions. And they are opinions.”

          Mike, the problem is that you are so partisan that you can’t even imagine ever working with anyone who doesn’t align perfectly with your deep-ingrained opinions. And they are opinions.

          “It is the duty of all of us to realize the truth.”

          Sanctimonious preaching from the KING of MDN FAKE CHARTS from leftist fever swamp sources?!? You can’t handle the truth and wouldn’t recognize it if it hit you in face.

          If you believe both parties are EXACTLY the same, obvious you are too immature to realize the differences…

  3. The European experience with unrestricted competition includes two world wars. I suppose you don’t care because fewer than twenty individuals died in the Continental U.S. during both wars combined. All those tens of millions of other dead civilians don’t matter.. they were foreigners, after all.

    1. Nothing but Trump worship come out of your orifices Goeb. It is amusing how you think you are debating someone when all you offer are immature personal attacks. Are you Trump’s yappy little miniature dog, snapping at the heels of anyone who doesn’t bow before Dear Leader?

          1. Impeached for exactly what Mr. Know it all? The Democrats and the media are jealous of his success setting economic records in a record amount of time permanently reminding the lip service Democrats they know nothing, can do nothing, and brag about NOTHING…

        1. “President Trump rules” Goeb claims. Not very well versed in the structure of the US government, are you Goeb?

          It would not surprise me that Goeb is a Russian troll. He seems to think that a multiparty system is bad for America. Support only one party, yeah that’s always worked out well, hasn’t it?

          Jeff Greenfield offered a nice summary of what to expect as The Chosen One flails out of control on Twitter:

          “As the evidence mounts against Trump, and the Judiciary Committee becomes the setting for a steady drip of damaging evidence against the president, he becomes more and more unmoored, launching into lengthy monologues about the spies and traitors inside his own administration. In response, onetime members of Trump’s administration—Jim Mattis, Rex Tillerson, H.R. McMaster—begin to express their concern about the president’s stability. As the president’s mental health becomes increasingly worrisome, a delegation including Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Lou Dobbs and Rudy Giuliani goes to the White House and urges Trump to resign. Trump orders them thrown out of the White House and tweets a stream of accusations about backstabbers; he also urges all Fox viewers to boycott the network, and speculates that Rupert Murdoch may never have become a U.S citizen.

          Those with long memories note that, during the last days of Nixon’s presidency, Defense Secretary James Schlesinger told the Joint Chiefs of Staff not to execute any presidential order involving military force without first checking with him. Unfortunately, with no one in any semblance of authority at the White House or anywhere in the administration, there is no one to check Trump. The president’s effort to divert attention from his troubles results in armed military conflict in Iran, North Korea, the South China Sea, and Venezuela. The year ends with the very real prospect of one or more of these conflicts ‘going nuclear’.”

    2. Speaking of arrogant and uniformed, Goeb, here’s a remedy: stop getting your news from propagandists.

      Here is a reprint of actual direct real live account of events proving obstruction of justice and abuse of power for personal gain. Read it in its entirety, maybe you will understand:

      https://www.businessinsider.com/read-declassified-whistleblower-complaint-ukraine-trump-zelensky-2019-9

      We look forward to the day that you put country before party.

        1. “Speaking of arrogant and uniformed, Goeb, here’s a remedy: stop getting your news from propagandists.”

          You don’t realize you perfectly described yourself, Mike.

          You keep going to biased leftist sources, proclaim it Gospel, then denigrate everything from independent and conservative sources as uninformed and propaganda. Works BOTH WAYS…

      1. Goeb whines about the EU because it makes his nation look bad in so many objective assessments. Education, health, happiness, leisure time, environment, …. while the USA divides itself on every issue, the EU has somehow held together through very trying times.

        But but but EU is bad, Trump and Boris told me so! Well just watch. Brexit will soon prove that being part of the EU is far better than being an independent outsider. If it was better to be a giant solo superpower, winning football teams would have one player on the field at any given time. Who has the time and energy to coordinate with other teammates? Truth is Ireland has zero desire to leave the EU and polls indicate that Scotland would gladly secede from Britain and join the EU independently if the idiot at Downing Street continues down the road to a “no deal” disaster. But we digress. As a staunch isolationist, Goeb neither understands nor cares about his neighbors and trading partners. He takes political pot shots online to make himself feel better.

        I call out Goeb as ignorant on this and most other matters of international interest.

        Meanwhile in the New World, corruption has once again surfaced. Everyone acts surprised. Candidate Pussy Grabber and repeated Epstein party attendee doesn’t honor marriage vows?!? Oh that’s okay, we forgive him. 7 time bankrupt businessman with more cleanup attorneys than Fox News has talking heads won’t show his taxes or disclose international businesses? Oh that’s fine, just ignore the emoluments clause of your Constitution. Admit on ABC News interview in June 2019 that you would happily abuse the power of the office for political ends? Well that must have been just locker room talk! He would neeeeeeever actually do what he says! Only 10 citations for obstructing justice when being investigated for his son’s and campaign employees repeated contacts with Russian and Ukranian nationals? Well as an executive he must not be held accountable now, you see. Slimebags like Cohen, Manafort, Giuliani as personal attorneys— nope, clearly those guys did all their wrongdoings out of earshot of the candidate and POTUS. May 2018, Ukraine suddenly stops all cooperation with US investigations into felon Manafort’s criminal activity. Previously agreed fund transfers halted by direct order of the administration. Ukraine takes many phone calls from Trump and his personal attorneys who, like Manafort, were hired to dig up dirt on political enemies. But zero contact with the US Attorney General whose primary purpose is to investigate corruption! Well of course that’s against the law, but Trump said he would make me great so we can’t investigate this either! To top it all off: after campaigning on Hillary’s email server, we now know that the Trump administration moved communications records and blocked access in clear violations of federal protocol. MAGAhats will spin that too.

        Goeb, if you think your government is all about greatness and freedom and responsibility to the American people, then I have a lovely waterfront home to sell you in the Gobi desert. Your current administration is a sham.

        You should do yourself a favor and clean up your own corrupt administration before accusing the EU of anything.

        You may find Trump’s associates in Russia and Ukraine particularly interesting. The bullshit smokescreen Giuliani is attempting to lay down now is just hilarious. He and his boss have ties to Kahrkiv, Poroshenko, Kilimnik, Firtash …. let me guess, the talking heads on your pro-Trump propaganda media feed haven’t bothered to tell you about all those foreigners Trump has been dealing with for years? Are you to lazy to learn about what your leaders are really doing? That makes sense. Why don’t you remove your lips from Trump’s ass and inform yourself about the law, the Constitution, and so forth instead of attempting to slander the EU?

          1. “Pales in comparison.”

            Okay, Goeb. Make your comparisons. What specifically is significantly better on average in the USA compared to the EU? Inquiring minds want to know.

            Not a knock on the USA, but seriously, I’ve traveled all over the planet and America has some serious problems that you are not fixing. Wake up.

            1. I agree with you. We have Democrat mayors in California, Illinois, Michigan and New York that waste billions of taxpayer dollars per year not solving the problems of homelessness, gang violence, illegal alien murderers, pollution, etc….

  4. “Speaking of arrogant and uniformed, Goeb, here’s a remedy: stop getting your news from propagandists.”

    Describes you perfectly.

    Our GREAT PRESIDENT Donald J. Trump says it best.

    First “Make America Great Again.” And contuntinevolvinv further, “Keep America Great.”

    Who can argue against either one, hmmm???…

  5. “@Mike, TxUser
    It’s an unfair contest really – reality v GoeB. His desperately poor education/knowledge/factual denial is easily shot to pieces yet he keeps on digging. A veritable Trump ‘mini me’ driven by a swollen ego
    What is he like.”

    @Mike, @TxUser, @Gotcha, @ KingMel.

    There is no “contest.” If I published my IQ numbers you would not “think differently.” You have all spouted Democrat talking points.

    Fine. Save the parrots…

    1. Go ahead and post your IQ then, genius. Your previous years of idiocy already show the political blowhard you are. You can’t even think outside of your narrow partisan politics.

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