The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.
Opining on the state of the Republican Party and its presidential primary frontrunner, the inimitable Charlie Pierce writes
He. Trump is the most ghastly creature ever to rise from the swamps of democracy, a lying, thieving con-man who’d steal soup if he had rubber pockets, but of course they’ll all support him in November because socialism! Dear god, it’s going to be a hoot.
Trump may indeed be the guy who would steal soup, or maybe rubber pocket liners embossed with his name, but who needs Trump when we have a corporate America that would charge us for the stolen soup? William Greider writes:
The multinationals are waiting for Congress to forgive them their debts.
That is, the US companies insist they won’t bring the money home and pay the taxes they owe until Washington pols steeply reduce the rate to bargain-basement levels. That’s tax “forgiveness” on a grand scale. What the companies also demand is a permanently lowered tax rate on their future earnings. Some leading Republicans advocate eliminating taxation of foreign corporate income entirely.
Imagine if average citizens were given this kind of discretion for their personal income tax. You could tell the IRS you regard your tax liability as unfair, so you’re not going to pay it until Congress enacts a lower rate. Don’t try this dodge in real life. They will come after you.
Many politicians are attracted to cutting a deal with the corporations because they’re in a bind of their own. Given the intense budget battles, the House and Senate often can’t even agree on how to pay for essential government projects and services. The tax-forgiveness scheme could bring home hundreds of billions in supposedly “new” revenue for those vital projects.
And just who are those multinationals?
The top 10 multinationals that would reap the largest boodle from this deal are Apple, Microsoft, Oracle, Citigroup, Amgen, Qualcomm, JPMorgan Chase, Gilead Sciences, Goldman Sachs, and Bank of America. According to Citizens for Tax Justice, these 10 collectively owe $162 billion in unpaid taxes on the $540 billion in profits they’ve parked offshore.
Elizabeth Warren is already on the job. *
But Our presidential candidates should be are also on the same page. This issue is made for Bernie Sanders has filed legislation on shifting tax burdens of shore (See The Best Defense’s comment below), but and Hillary Clinton can afford to join them. has spoken publicly about inversion and profit stripping. Barbara Boxer evidently isn’t on the same page, but neither, it seems, is the press.
Not only does this issue matter across the board, it’s what this election is about. Corporations legally cheat us on tax revenue earned overseas, agree to repatriate the money if we cut them taxes for the long-term. Bernie has yet to mention this on the campaign trail. It is important that both he and Hillary do so. This is not the direction we want our country headed.
* Edited to reflect the positions of our presidential candidates.