That's capitalism: the super rich pay zero U.S. taxes


President Obama over the weekend strongly took exception to the notion that the Bush tax cuts for the rich should be extended. The president was right to do so.

Corporate taxes are not too high - they are way too low. In fact the majority of big corporations operating in the U.S. pay no taxes at all. That's right: zero.

According to a recent report by the Government Accounting Office requested by Senators Carl Levin of Michigan and Byron Dorgan of North Dakota, "72 percent of all foreign corporations and about 57 percent of U.S. companies doing business in the United States paid no federal income taxes for at least one year between 1998 and 2005."

It gets worse: for at least two of the years between 1998 to 2005 more than one-half of foreign corporations and 42 percent of those from the U.S. paid not one red penny in taxes, despite the astronomical growth of the deficit - now $418 billion and escalating.

These guys are taking it all the way to the bank: of those who do pay taxes, some 33 percent, only 2 percent pay more than 11 percent in taxes.

However, you wouldn't know any of this from the tea partiers and GOP spin masters who complain about government entitlements and give-aways to working-class poor, black, brown, Asian, and white people living in the U.S.

As New York recently commented, "If you want to cut entitlements, cut welfare for the wealthy. Make corporations pay their fair share of the taxes."

None of the corporations were named in the GAO report. At a minimum it's time for full public disclosure. The government must act in the public interest.

Moreover, with corporations only paying 15 percent on capital gains and working people paying 25 percent, the Bush tax cuts must not be extended, tea partiers and their corporate backers be damned!

Photo: CC 2.0



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  • the rich should pay period

    Posted by vera house, 04/04/2011 1:34am (5 years ago)

  • I assume the Tea party folks believe that the tax cuts actually help all of us or that most Americans will soon be rich with these tax cuts for the rich, as they trickle down. I have found that since the taxes were reduced the gap between the rich & poor/them and us has risen by leaps and bounds. About 50 or 60 years ago 10 percent of the rich had 90 percent of the wealth then. And as the tax cuts from democrats and republicans have now reduced across the board cuts on us poor and middle class; 1 and a half percent of Americans now have 98 percent of the wealth. The working man receives about 35 times less than the amount of their wealthier counterparts who at one time was two to three times of a difference 50 years ago. Just allowing tax cuts for these folks has not improved the life of the poor and middle class. I believe that this type of activity will eventually cause class warfare as what happened to the Russians in 1918. The poor and middle class led a revolt to allow their selves to receive a few scraps of bread from their wealthier & greedier citizens that controlled all the nations purse strings. This same thing has now just happened to us and was close in 1929. Don Reagan was Ronald Reagan's C E O elective who "turned loose the bull". Don Reagan was a leading C E O leading bank and elective wall street business director's into chaos. Bush, Obama, and others much like our financial directors Summers etc. are the current politician's, manipulation of government, stopping all regulation and any help for this countries needy, while all their "whining quotes like "I would never take away my mother's Social Security, prescriptions or medicare, God bless her dear little heart etc. etc. I know they do not believe in God or their mother's when this is their war cry right before they cut or ravage a social program of entitlements of the old or the less greedy. Still our war or work ravaged Americans whose work related jobs are passed on by thieves wanting less taxes for their selves while they control all the wealth and what they can steal. If my father whose double gut shot WW II wounds and malaria was not enough to allow him to retire with all his service related problems the whole system needs taken away from the Democrats and republicans, the politicians take away everything they can.

    Posted by butch leventry , 12/17/2010 7:01pm (5 years ago)

  • Perhaps the U S government would have or should have designed a tax cut to allow Americans to keep the steel industry and so many other of those industries that needed to compete to keep jobs in this country. While I never propose to be smart why do I feel politicians are dumber or just outright corrupt, these equations seem so simple that only a dumbbell would not know.

    Posted by butch leventry , 12/17/2010 6:06pm (5 years ago)

  • Yep, corporations are now people. Well, if that's the case tax them like people are taxed.

    Posted by Ronald Humphrey, 11/13/2010 12:24pm (5 years ago)

  • @AnnieOK:

    Taxbreaks don't lower the prices we pay, because businesses don't pass the savings on to us. Why would they?

    If you've been selling me an item for $10, and your costs in producing the item drop by 50c each, do you then start charging me $9.50? No! You'll tend to keep charging me (at least) $10, because you already know that that's how much I'm prepared to pay for that item. Your ads might say something about how you're always "passing the savings on" to me, but in reality you will keep that extra 50c for yourself.

    This is why corporate taxbreaks do not give us lower prices. It's also why the claim that if Medicare paid more, then hospitals could charge the rest of us less, is so bogus. Because they will NOT willingly charge us less than "what the market will bear", as they say.

    And remember how "tort reform" was suposed to lower health insurance premiums in Texas, by making it less expensive for doctors to practice medicine? Didn't happen. Yes, doctors were able to start paying less for malpractice insurance, but they didn't magically start charging their patients less because of it -- LOL! I read about that issue during the healthcare debate.

    Posted by Trailer Trash, 11/11/2010 8:29pm (5 years ago)

  • Couldn't agree more but while you are looking at the RICH not paying taxes one might also look at the POLICY makers of the Political Caste. Those policies are made and supported by politicians of all stripes. The movement of labor intense jobs,such as, garment manufactures have moved their operations to no labor union, no OSHA, low tax countries under the watchful noses of Democrats and Republicans alike. Those companies DO NOT pay taxes in the U.S..The garment industry was a second family income for many people.
    While you are looking you need to look at the FEDERAL RESERVE system and the MILLIONS the Fed.Reserve Banks family owners and stock holders are making every time our Government BORROWS money or deposits money into the system.
    This is not all about Socialism verses Capitalism but the POWER ELITES RUNNING THE COUNTRY and support groups keeping control of money for themselves.

    Posted by chuckwagon2u, 11/11/2010 11:36am (5 years ago)

  • @annieOK So what you're saying is that most conservatives believe that prices will go down if corporations stop paying taxes? What goofy gas have they been inhaling? Are you saying they are that stupid?

    Posted by Joel, 11/10/2010 2:43pm (5 years ago)

  • Actually, most conservatives do understand that corporations pay no income tax. No matter what rate the federal government might set for the 'corporate income tax rate,' they will always simply pass 'cost of business' on to us. Corporations do not pay taxes. They simply collect it from the consumers, and then pass that on to the government.

    When we decry a high corporate tax rate, it is not because we have such a love for big corporations and want what's best for them, it is because we get--we understand--that the corporate tax rate partially determines the price we pay.

    Low corporate tax rates=better prices for the consumer. It is that simple.

    Posted by annieOK, 11/10/2010 10:04am (5 years ago)

  • Why is there a separate corporate tax rate anyway? Aren't they supposed to be 'people'

    Posted by Ray, 11/09/2010 3:54pm (5 years ago)

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