Re: Apple have strong bladders..
"The very existence of the EU is at threat and the single market is right up there as the biggest cause of the problems."
The single market was what it was all about originally. It's all the "ever closer integration" nonsense that's the cause of the problems. None of which is relevant to this case. The issue here is that Ireland decided to let Apple play silly buggers with paper companies. Apple would still have got a good deal at Ireland's standard tax rate although they'd probably have found a different tax haven for all the rest-of-the-world business that's been put through Ireland. In general I don't think the rest of the EU are terribly happy with the standard Irish rate but short of the EU imposing yet another EU-wide diktat they have to lump it.