I know there are those who will say what is said in the story "this is a problem with the tax code" but really this strikes me as a patriotism argument as well. On Memorial Day we honor those who sacrificed everything for the government, who then rewards companies who willfully try to evade paying their share to the government. The government who along with everything the conservatives despise also pays for the military that tries to safeguard the world and the benefits for those who fought and gave of themselves for this country. I bet if I go to Accenture's offices here in town they'll have big US flags up, and maybe still have stuff about remembering 9/11 and supporting our troops on their property, but to me they sure are doing so in a piss poor manner.
It is certianly a problem. But as you mentioned, this is indicative of a huge problem with the tax code. Corporate taxes are so high businesses have to move offshore to stay profitable. And while "staying profitable" sounds evil and corporate, it does translate to some job retention in the states. We do need to take steps to reverse this, but we should start by lowing the taxes.
These Democrats up in Texas — they may not be patriots, but they did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.-Rep. Tom DeLay on the "fugitive" Texas Democrats
But as you mentioned, this is indicative of a huge problem with the tax code. Corporate taxes are so high businesses have to move offshore to stay profitable.
This is a myth. Corporate taxes in the United States right now are lower than they ever have been at a federal level, and it's a very common practice for companies to set up their national headquarters in states that pay no state corporate taxes like Delaware - or get exempted, as McDonald's does for operating their national headquarters in Illinois. Furthermore, corporate taxes are lower in the United States than anywhere else in the First World, but you don't hear about French or German or British companies falling over themselves to relocate to the Caymans.
If businesses have to move offshore to remain profitable, then there's something deeply wrong with the operation of those businesses, not the tax code. There's only so much repetition of the "we need more tax cuts" mantra conservatives can offer up before it becomes ridiculous.
This is not tax evasion, it's tax avoidance. All companies attempt to avoid taxes (as well as individuals), it's only common sense. Tax evasion, however, is illegal.
I still don't see paying taxes as patriotic, just as something we all have to do. If there was a way around it, I would be all for it. But there are things that government need to do, and they need money to do so. The goal should be to meet only the necessary requirements, and as cheaply as possible.
Companies move to other countries for many reasons. Doe Run lead mining company, for example, opened up mines outside of Missouri because they didn't have to provide safety equipment for the workers or filters on the stacks. Many companies move because they can pay their workers less, use less safety equipment, cut corners on building costs, etc.
This doesn't mean we should have looser standards here.
Because those companies are largely government-owned in the first place.
The top ten French corporations by size:
1.) TotalFinaElf (energy) 2.) AXA (insurance) 3.) Carrefour (retail) 4.) Vivendi/Unversal (entertainment) 5.) Peugeot (automotive) 6.) France Telecom (telecommunications) 7.) Suez SA des Eaux (waste disposal) 8.) Renault SA (automotive) 9.) Credit Agricole (bank insurance) 10.) ITM Entreprises (retail)
Of those ten, only France Telecom is government owned (it's the primary telecommunications company in France).
As for Germany? Well, the German government doesn't own BMW, DaimlerChrysler, Bayer, Deutschebank, Karstadt, Bertelsmann, BASF, Lufthansa, Siemens and Volkswagen. In fact, according to this handy report, only 1.2 percent of all German companies are even partially owned by the government, and the German government holds a majority stake in precisely zero percent of them. So, I think at this point we can dismiss your "the government owns all those companies so they can't relocate" argument as being kind of not true.
Originally posted by MoeGatesI took a piss on the AXA building at (I believe) 49th and 6th one late night after celerating my big win at poker night a bit too heavily. I feel so much better now that I know it's French.
"You will never get that TV show. You'll never, ever get the Republican TV show. The Writers Guild of America, my union, is at a minimum, 99 percent leftist liberal and, like me, socialist. And we don't know how to write it. We don't." - Lawrence O'Donnell, former Capitol Hill aide; co-producer/executive story editor/writer for "The West Wing"; and, creator/Executive Producer of "Mister Sterling" on why Republicans and conservatives are "practically invisible" on TV during CNN's "Relibable Sources", 3/25.