back to article US Republicans bash UK for tech tax plan

One of the top Republicans in the US House of Representatives had harsh words Wednesday for the UK government's plan to impose additional taxes on tech giants. Representative Kevin Brady (R-TX), chairman of the influential House Ways and Means Committee, said the tax was an unfair measure to extract cash from US-based …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    International norms

    "Singling out a key global industry dominated by American companies for taxation that is inconsistent with international norms is a blatant revenue grab."

    Flooding country with fake news and subverting democracy is also pretty inconsistent with International norms. Yet Facebook and Twatter are the prime enablers; largely with a blind eye from the US government.

    1. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: International norms

      Yes, they have been taking the piss for years and we that have used them are all complicit as we've enjoyed the benefits of these business being so competitive because they can use a structure that gives tax advantage not available to domestic.

      1. TVU Silver badge

        Re: International norms

        "Yes, they have been taking the piss for years and we that have used them are all complicit as we've enjoyed the benefits of these business being so competitive because they can use a structure that gives tax advantage not available to domestic"

        ^ This. These businesses have been undermining traditional physical businesses for years now and what has helped these tech giants do that is all the tax avoidance that they undertake (and continue to do so).

    2. jmch Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: International norms

      "is inconsistent with international norms"

      Is that the international norm of claiming that Megacorp UK with revenues of $Megajillion also has expenses of $Megajillion because it's licensing technology from Megacorp Bermuda?

      Is it the other international norm that allows Megacorp to transfer it's humungously valuable IP that generates many $Megajillions from Megacorp US (where it's actually been developed) to Megacorp Bermuda for a token sum that keeps the money out of the US?

      Or is it any of the other international norms by which the various Megacorps of the world charge their subsidiaries ludicrous sums for cross-border trade between various subsidiaries, work out sweet ad-hoc tax deals with Ireland, Luxembourg etc that have to be kept behind-closed-doors not to fall foul of EU rules against illegal state aid etc etc etc

      1. streaky Silver badge

        Re: International norms

        That's the actual issue, there's a massive tax evasion exercise going on, if we're talking about international norms. Then again it's one that relies of fairly fundamental EU law at its heart and we have no tools in the box to fix it until we leave.

        I have no confidence in our [UK] government to sit this guy down and tell him to shut the f up, which is somewhat alarming really. That said W&M isn't nearly as influential as the article might suggest.

        "he is threatening to take similar actions against British firms should the digital services tax indeed take effect in 2020"

        Which British firms are behaving like Google, Amazon, Facebook in this area? Tell me who they are and I'll join that fight too. Also getting pissy about something that doesn't exist, will not exist for a long time and the government has made clear will be put together with the involvement of business is a pretty strong clue you're a nutjob and nobody should take you seriously. Sounds like the OECD path he's suggesting won't work anyway given how opposed to this measure he is.

        Double taxation - the problem is getting these companies to pay *any* tax, anywhere.

        1. Glen 1 Bronze badge

          Re: International norms

          >> Then again it's one that relies of fairly fundamental EU law at its heart and we have no tools in the box to fix it until we leave.

          Given as TFA states, the EU has a similar law in a similar state (IE planning stages) It looks like the EU will have the tools soon enough. However, what we (UK) don't have, is enough economic clout to make it stick.

        2. jmch Silver badge

          Re: International norms

          " one that relies of fairly fundamental EU law at its heart and we have no tools in the box to fix it until we leave."

          Actually, EU currently has very little power over tax issues, which are mostly handled by member nations individually. The EU is currently putting a LOT of pressure on member states to harmonise tax rules to be able to clamp down on tax loopholes devised by member states. The UK already has full powers to cut down on tax evasion, and it's good to see that it is starting to do so.

          1. Anonymal coward

            Re: International norms

            "The UK already has full powers to cut down on tax evasion"

            For a better but profoundly depressing view of this, seek out the Private Eye/BBC Panorama investigation called "Tax, lies and videotape".

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: International norms

            >> " one that relies of fairly fundamental EU law at its heart and

            >> we have no tools in the box to fix it until we leave."

            > Actually, EU currently has very little power over tax issues,

            > which are mostly handled by member nations individually.

            Don't be silly! The EU is the cause of all our problems, and it will be rainbows and unicorns once we leave this evil institution!

          3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: International norms

            "The UK already has full powers to cut down on tax evasion, and it's good to see that it is starting to do so."

            This is where we need to discriminate between evasion and avoidance. Evasion is illegal so obviously the UK has full powers at its disposal. Avoidance, which is the case here, is the use of legal means to reduce tax. That means that the only powers available to a govt. not happy with the tax take are to huff and puff but let the avoider carry on, change rules on existing taxes, introduce new taxes or, in the case of multinationals, reduce tax rates so as to make the country a more attractive place in which taxable income can be realised. The last is only really workable for a small economy such as Ireland or Luxembourg but not, at present, the UK. A new tax seems to be the most workable of the others.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: This is where we need to discriminate between evasion and avoidance

              Good clarity there, thanks.

              A thought, not that I necessarily agree with the sentiment, but

              "in the case of multinationals, reduce tax rates so as to make the country

              a more attractive place in which taxable income can be realised"

              is just competition/capitalism at work (just with countries in an international playground, rather than companies in a national playground) so governments that support capitalism really have no leg to stand on?

            2. jmch Silver badge

              Re: International norms

              @Dr Syntax:

              "This is where we need to discriminate between evasion and avoidance. Evasion is illegal so obviously the UK has full powers at its disposal. Avoidance, which is the case here, is the use of legal means to reduce tax. That means that the only powers available to a govt. not happy with the tax take are to "

              Quite right. When I said "The UK already has full powers to cut down on tax evasion", I actually meant both evasion AND avoidance. ie the UK already has full autonomy to change it's tax laws to cut down on avoidance even as part of the EU. Of course that means, as you say, new legislation or tightening the interpretative parameters of current legislation

        3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: International norms

          "there's a massive tax evasion exercise going on"

          Evasion or avoidance?

          1. Tom 35 Silver badge

            Re: International norms

            Evasion or avoidance?

            You have to check the thickness of the brown envelop full of cash to know. Was that loop hole paid for in full or are they pulling a fast one.

          2. JohnFen Silver badge

            Re: International norms

            "Evasion or avoidance?"

            That's a distinction without much of a difference.

    3. JassMan Silver badge
      Holmes

      Re: International norms

      The big mistake that US politicos make is assuming that the big American companies pay tax in the US on their international profits. Whereas all the big companies move their profits to tax havens and pay very little tax anywhere in the world.

      1. Ledswinger Silver badge

        Re: International norms

        The big mistake that US politicos make is assuming that the big American companies pay tax in the US on their international profits.

        No they don't. In the US bribery is legal, as a corporation you just buy yourself a politician by funding their election campaign. The politician then says whatever you want him to say, no matter how dishonest, stupid or inaccurate. None of them believe that US corporations pay their taxes at home, but they don't care - they speak only for whoever has bought them.

        1. jmch Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: International norms

          "In the US bribery is legal"

          Propaganda and the funding thereof is protected by free speech. First amendment, baby!

      2. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: International norms

        "The big mistake that US politicos make is assuming that the big American companies pay tax in the US on their international profits."

        Hell, the biggest of American companies barely pay tax in the US on domestic profits.

      3. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: International norms

        "all the big companies move their profits to tax havens and pay very little tax anywhere in the world."

        Wouldn't ANYONE who COULD do this, do this?

        Yeah I'll just VOLUNTARILY bend over and take it, enjoy it, etc. because taxes are used SO wisely by governments. Hell, just write a check for EVERY SPARE BIT OF CURRENCY... [yeah NOT happening]

        There are basically two alternative philosophies on this one:

        a) punish corporations for acting in their own interests,

        - or -

        b) make it so EVERYONE can benefit by lowering tax rates across the board, and no need to shop for a 'tax haven' to prevent losing a big chunk of your money

        just sayin' - gummints get too much of our money anyway. let THEM budget and cut back for once...

        1. werdsmith Silver badge

          Re: International norms

          The companies don't pay the tax anyway, the end consumer pays it and the companies are just passing it up to government.

          The money tax being generated within an economy leaking out and not finding its way back to into our public fund is taking the total piss. They are eating our lunch and it's time to put a lock on the larder.

          I've stopped using them as much as I can, and yes I know it's futile but....

        2. jmch Silver badge

          Re: International norms

          "Wouldn't ANYONE who COULD do this, do this?"

          I don't disagree that companies practicing avoidance are right to act in their own self-interest. What really sticks in the craw is that they spend millions to hire lobbyists, buy friendly politicians and fund supposedly 'independant' think thanks to come up with tax laws that are designed by themselves to be full of loopholes, which they then proceed to exploit. Then when challenged on the avoidance they go, with a straight face "Just following the laws", when they know full well the laws are designed that way because THEY designed them.

          "make it so EVERYONE can benefit by lowering tax rates across the board"

          In my opinion this is a great solution. The current system is designed so that to benefit from tax law loopholes you need to have a presence in multiple countries, including many offshore ones, AND be able to fund an army of tax lawyers. In other words only the biggest multinational corporations and the richest individuals have access to the lowest tax rates. The way to allow EVERYONE to benefit is to cut down on the loopholes that only the rich benefit from, then you could cut rates across the board.

        3. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: International norms

          "Wouldn't ANYONE who COULD do this, do this?"

          No.

          I've started and run a few successful businesses over the decades, and I have always chosen to incorporate in my own state rather than a tax haven state (such as Delaware). Why? Because it's the right thing to do.

          There do still exist people who make choices based on ethics and morality rather than dollars and cents.

      4. Potemkine! Silver badge

        Re: International norms

        "The big mistake that US politicos make"

        I doubt it's a mistake. I would rather believe that a part of the not-paid taxes will end in their pockets.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: International norms

      largely with a blind eye from the US government.

      Can you elaborate on the blindness of the eye considering that it is WIRED DIRECTLY INTO THE CIA BITBARN? All USA media social media platforms provide direct data feeds and have been doing so for more than a decade now (since Bush).

      What blind eye are you talking about?

  2. Dan 55 Silver badge

    Rebuilding society tax

    Can we have that as well if they start getting upperty?

    Just to learn 'em a bit more.

  3. Ian Bush

    "The United Kingdom’s introduction of a new tax targeting cross-border digital services – which mirrors a similar proposal under consideration in the European Union – is troubling,"

    We thought with brexit coming the Limeys would just do what we told them ...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Oh, don't worry, the UK government certainly *will* do that- and try to sell it as a victory regardless- once it realises it's not in the powerful position to dictate terms to all and sundry as was promised by Brexiteers and that the US has it over a barrel when it comes to a trade deal. (#) Especially since their short-sighted non-planning didn't take into account a bullying shitstain like Trump getting into power there and actively railing against the WTO they put so much faith in.

      (#) Funny, it's almost as if it benefits the US to be dealing unilaterally with a much smaller and weaker partner. Particularly one that's desparate for a trade deal thanks to its own delusion that it was still 1951 and it could still do what it wants like Suez never happened.

  4. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    No Taxes! Just call them Tariffs

    Seriously, if the UK called them Tariffs then the Donald would be so so happy. But calling them Taxes gives the Republicans hives.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No Taxes! Just call them Tariffs

      While we're here, I'd like to see someone start an ostensibly right-wing campaign railing against and calling for the abolition of "socialist" and "anti-free-market" government subsidies for the US corn industry.

      Trolling, obviously, but for a good reason- to see how the all-American, anti-commie (and government subsidised) Republican corn farmers actually respond.

      (Spoiler; any response itself probably wouldn't be all that interesting in itself- they'd likely just come up with some bullshit rationalisation for their self-interested hypocrisy. But I'd like to see what line they'd take in *actively attacking* a campaign that (ostensibly) was arguing in favour of the exact anti-government, pro-free-market line that corporate America has pushed as being synonymous with America for decades).

  5. WibbleMe

    Well would you expect a thank you for taking money away from their sponsors

  6. Trollslayer Silver badge
    Flame

    This from thieves

    The Republicans treat the people of the US as a piggy bank.

    The Tax Bill reduced corporate tax from 35% to 21% plus directors can 'pass thought' their money from the company at corporate rate so they have halved the tax on that.

    1. Big John Silver badge

      Re: This from thieves

      > "The Republicans treat the people of the US as a piggy bank."

      So when big government types raise taxes, that's the opposite of taking the people's money away? Oh right, this is about taxing corporations, not the people.

      Except, corporations never pay tax. All taxes levied on them are paid out of profits. So if the government takes a bigger bite, they must raise rates to cover it or go bankrupt, thus passing the tax on to their customers, the people.

      Conversely, if corporate taxes are reduced then they generally reduce rates too, because if they don't and their competitors do, their market share tanks.

      So in either case it's the high corporate tax crowd that are doing the piggy bank thing, and they are rarely Republicans. Democrats are the ones who want to "stick it to the corporations," which actually adds tax burden to the people, but not in an obvious way.

      1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

        Re: This from thieves

        Well Big John, you might want to read the Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower's speech about the "military–industrial–congressional complex" before you get too far into that line of thought. Or do you think that it was Fake News?

        1. Big John Silver badge

          Re: This from thieves

          Well Version 1.0, I've read that speech and it basically says that corporations that directly service the government can become a big problem if not watched for signs of bribery toward politicians. Ike was quite correct about that!

          But I didn't see anything in the speech about upping corporate tax rates to fix the potential bribery problem. In fact, raising taxes on military contractors more or less automatically raises their rates, thus churning the tax funds around to no purpose, unless you count "shrinkage" along the way as a purpose.

  7. Big_Boomer

    USA: "We are the richest country on the planet, but only because we borrow so much and collect tax on profits that are made in other countries, so of course we are going to complain when you finally wake up and notice that we have been RIPPING YOU OFF for decades you stupid people"

    Rest of World: "Tax ALL USA based businesses out of our markets. Lets see how FARTUS likes it when the whole world turns their back on the US."

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Have an upvote

      For mentioning "FARTUS"

      Well done!

  8. h4rm0ny

    China trade wars.

    We'll likely see trade negotiations between China and the USA suddenly start moving again before the month is out. They're waiting for the results of the mid-terms. If the Republicans do well then China will shrug and start making some concessions because Trump's not going anywhere. If the Democrats surge then China will push harder because Trump will be politically very insecure. Either way, the deadlock is in large part because China is waiting for 6th of November to see how strong a hand Trump has to play.

  9. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Well of course he would say that

    Given that it is the duty of the US Government to defend its corporate masters at all times, it is obvious that anything that will prevent tech corps from maximizing their revenue and benefits must be quashed as soon as possible.

    But hey, Senator, you're talking to another country, not to some peon in the US that you can pressure into obedience. And guess what ? It's the ENTIRE WORLD that is starting to get tired of this tax-free situation, so you'd better get your speech set to a template, because you're gonna need it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well of course he would say that

      >Given that it is the duty of the US Government to defend its corporate masters at all times

      That is what the Senate is for - it was never conceived as an elected chamber and only has been for just over the last hundred years. It was modeled on the House of Lords with a remit to protect the land owners and oligarchs in the event of an over zealous elected Congress getting a little too literal in its interpretation of equality.

      >It's the ENTIRE WORLD that is starting to get tired of this tax-free situation

      Lots of noise, but there's always a queue at Starbucks and my high-street is looking pretty bare when it comes to lines available on Amazon.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well of course he would say that

      Ironically, while what you say is true, as I noted elsewhere, the UK government itself will most likely bend over and take it from Trump and cronies when push comes to shove and they need a trade deal.

  10. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Friends

    Does America still have any? At the rate these arrogant shits are going there can't be many left.

    1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Re: Friends

      Americans do.

      America, maybe not.

      1. joed

        Re: Friends

        By all accounts we can still buy them. For now.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Friends

      Does America still have any?

      Did it ever have any?

      1. Geekpride
        Joke

        Re: Friends

        Of course America had friends! There were Ross, Rachel, Joey, Chandler, Phoebe and Monica.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'd like to point out that back in the early days of online poker and gaming, the US criminalised offshore operations and prosecuted anyone they could - not because it was illegal, but they were late to the market and weren't making any money from it.

    Don't like it up 'em do they?

  12. Dwarf Silver badge

    The irony

    Stated from a country that has local taxes at the state level in addition to those at the national level.

    Anyhow, companies working in any given country need to comply by the laws of those countries.

    1. Alien8n Silver badge

      Re: The irony

      On sales yes, but even the UK has local taxation on top of national taxation. Or do you not pay Council Tax?

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: The irony

        "the UK has local taxation on top of national taxation... Council Tax"

        Different entities being taxed. Personal taxes are income based, company taxes are on profits. CGT is on capital gains, VAT on value added. Council tax, including business taxes, are on occupation of property. If you want to get into double taxation you need to look at VAT on fuel taxes - but it's not local on national.

        1. Alien8n Silver badge

          Re: The irony

          I did mention that at the start of my reply "On sales, yes". I'm more than aware that the US charges effectively VAT twice, both at a local and a national level. My comment on Council Tax is about the fact that we pay a local tax, admittedly property based and not income, but it's still local. And it's a top up to the taxation the government takes and then hands to councils. You could also argue that business rates are also a double taxation as companies pay corporation tax on profits, but councils then also charge business rates. The big difference being that while corporation tax is only paid on profit, business rates are paid regardless.

  13. Wellyboot Silver badge

    double taxation

    >>>double taxation," Brady declared.<<<

    Double fek all is still...

    If these outfits were paying the full tax whack on all global operations in the US he may have had a point.

    1. jmch Silver badge

      Re: double taxation

      "double taxation"

      If the US has problems with double taxation, they shouldn't tax their companies* overseas earnings! (what's that you say? they don't actually do that as long as teh funds stay out of the US? Well, carry on, then!)

      *and citizens, which is a whole other kettle of fish

      1. Simon B-52

        Re: double taxation

        I doubt this is related to anything as reasonable as objecting to double taxation. I am perhaps too cynical, but this looks to me like certain people being in certain firms' pockets. Not mentioning any names, you all know who I'm talking about.

  14. Simon B-52

    A rare and special A***hole

    It's a rare and special a***hole that has me side with Phil Hammond, but Kevin Brady (R-TX) is that a***hole. Congratulations Kevin.

  15. hammarbtyp Silver badge

    The cheek of it

    How dare they!!

    Don't they realise they are dealing with the worlds 7̶t̶h̶,̶8̶t̶h̶,̶ TBD largest economy

  16. Wolfclaw Silver badge

    Typical US politician, happy to do whatever it takes to protect home market and companies that funnel $$$ to their slush funds, but slag off anybody else trying to make them pay their fair share !

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "Typical US politician, happy to do whatever it takes to protect home market"

      What a pity more UK politicians don't want to protect UK firms' home market.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well it was a good idea but I can't see this weakened minority UK government, that is fractured by internal splits and lacking in direction on Brexit, managing to stand up against the USA.

    Expect to see the proposal watered down, backtracked and then quietly forgotten.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "I can't see this weakened minority UK government, that is fractured by internal splits and lacking in direction on Brexit, managing to stand up against the USA."

      There's nothing unites people better than an external enemy. Post Brexit the US can replace the EU in that role.

  18. TJ1
    Joke

    Nice to see the Special Relationship in action...

    ... roll on leaving the EU so the UK can negotiate a wonderful free trade deal with the USA.

  19. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge

    An easy solution

    would be making it illegal to charge for IP transfer... unless its being sold to a independent 3rd company.

    eg Google cayman islands cannot charge Google UK 4 billion quid/yr for using Google US's IP when both companies are fully owned by Google US.

    But if someone like Search UK (an example company) wants to use Google's IP, then they can be charged 4 billion quid for it....

    But then the lawyers/accountants will quickly find any loopholes in the tax code, helpfully inserted by tax officials/politicians who later goto work for the multi-nationals....

    1. Richard IV

      Re: An easy solution

      Not just intracorporate IP transfer; capital transfer too.

      That the bank of Mum and Dad doesn't charge interest and doesn't charge naming rights should be a core principle embedded in the tax system.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: An easy solution

        "That the bank of Mum and Dad doesn't charge interest and doesn't charge naming rights should be a core principle"

        You mean I could have been charging the offspring for use of my surname?

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: An easy solution

          "You mean I could have been charging the offspring for use of my surname?"

          You mean you didn't patent your DNA? <point and laughs>

  20. hmv

    Republicans think it's bad; it must be good.

    As the subject says - if the Republicans think it's bad, then it's in all likelihood a pretty good idea.

  21. Mark C 2

    "..for the UK government's plan to impose <del>additional<del> taxes on tech giants."

    FTFY.

  22. Velv Silver badge
    Childcatcher

    For all these multinational cross border companies, why not set up one cybercountry where all income is lodged and subsequently taxed at an agreed fair rate.

    That tax is then proportionally distributed to all the actual countries in which the multinational operates.

    Removes the ability of companies to leverage fancy schemes in a low tax jurisdiction and offers an opportunity for poorer countries to receive their fair share.

    We are all citizens of the same cyber space, we should all equally benefit?

    1. arthoss

      Maybe in a couple of thousands of years...

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "offers an opportunity for poorer countries to receive their fair share."

      The existing tax system offers that. For multinationals there's an international market place in low corporate taxes. If a low tax rate brings in more from large multinationals than it loses from local businesses then it's a net gain. It also benefits any local businesses who export goods or services, so win-win. At present the UK's not in a position to play in that market. Not yet.

  23. cam

    The protectionists' whine is so sublime.

  24. Long John Silver
    Pirate

    The bleedin' obvious

    They would say that, wouldn't they?

  25. adam payne Silver badge

    Representative Kevin Brady (R-TX), chairman of the influential House Ways and Means Committee, said the tax was an unfair measure to extract cash from US-based companies.

    As opposed to making a truck load of money and paying next to no tax.

  26. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "The ongoing global dialogue on the digital economy through the OECD framework should not be pre-empted"

    Is any particular country slowing down the OECD process by any chance? If the US thinks the OECD route is the best then surely they'll respond by ensuring it's speeded up, wouldn't they? Wouldn't they?

  27. ThomH Silver badge

    "Representative Kevin Brady (R-TX), chairman of the influential House Ways and Means Committee"

    ... very likely won't still be chairman of the Ways and Means Committee by January.

    In the US system, the chairpeople are nowadays always from whichever party has the majority in the House of Representatives (i.e. the part that's a bit like the Commons), which is statistically unlikely to be the Republicans after the election on Tuesday; historically the president's party almost always takes a whipping at the first mid terms and this president seems to be going out of his way to motivate the opposition.

    That said, I was wrong in my expectations as to votes twice in 2016.

    1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

      Re: "Representative Kevin Brady (R-TX), chairman of the influential House Ways and Means Committee"

      That said, I was wrong in my expectations as to votes twice in 2016.

      You forgot to take into account the fact that, since you are commenting on a story on a tech news site, you are probably significantly "smarter than the average bear", whilst, by definition, 50% of voters are dumber than average.

      You made the mistake of thinking that others would follow the same logic as yourself, rather than swallowing whatever bullshit was piped into their faces. Like some sort of reverse Dunning-Kruger effect, where you don't realise how stupid everyone else is.

  28. ma1010 Silver badge
    Flame

    Just Another Corporate Mouthpiece

    Thus speaks another of the many corporate mouthpieces that proliferate our government these days.

    These bastards are traitors to the people of their own country. Those big corporations don't pay much in the way of taxes HERE, much less anywhere else. Not paying tax means they have LOTS of extra money left around to buy Congress and the rest of the government apparatus, and they do. Anyone who doubts this just needs to look at Ajit Pai, who doesn't even bother to hide the fact that he's a hollow sock puppet of Big Telco and Cable. The rest of them are just a bit more subtle (not much).

    And it's not all Republicans - they own plenty of Democrats, too. It doesn't really matter which of the two parties is in power as they're both pretty much bought and paid for. There are exceptions, but they're too few to do any good.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Just Another Corporate Mouthpiece

      "And it's not all Republicans - they own plenty of Democrats, too. It doesn't really matter which of the two parties is in power as they're both pretty much bought and paid for. There are exceptions, but they're too few to do any good."

      I know transparency in government is usually seem as a good thing, but I wonder how votes in the two houses might turn out if they used a secret ballot?

  29. EnviableOne Bronze badge

    Taxes, Havens and Loopholes

    Ok so the tax is a good idea, but the reason that the tax needs to be deployed at all is the UK overseas territories acting as tax havens.

    Jersey, Cayman Isles, Bermuda, Gibralter, British Virgin Islands, Anguilla

    the rest of them are former Empire nations or micro-nations

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