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Amazon, Google and Apple Won't Need To Pay Tax, Despite Goverment Threats 327

girlmad writes "Despite moves by government to get Google, Amazon and Apple to admit they make sales in the UK and US, and therefore should pay tax on these earnings, this article argues these are empty threats and that any taxes paid will get returned to the tech giants in government grants and subsidies. Tough luck to the small firms out there."
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Amazon, Google and Apple Won't Need To Pay Tax, Despite Goverment Threats

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  • misleading article (Score:5, Informative)

    by jbmartin6 ( 1232050 ) on Sunday May 19, 2013 @10:40AM (#43767823)
    The article doesn't say, but it appears that when it says "tax" it is referring to *income* tax. For some reason, a lot of people forget that corporations, unlike people, pay income tax on NET rather than gross. In other words, the corporation pays all of its expenses, then pays income tax on what is left over. Those expenses include your salary, your benefits, new capital projects, and so on. Meanwhile, the real tax burden of the organization is much higher when you add in all the other taxes they are paying: sales tax, property tax, tariffs, and so on. The story that these corporations aren't paying very much in "taxes" is a gross distortion. They just aren't paying very much in income taxes, which is by design.
  • Re:Dubious. (Score:4, Informative)

    by gnasher719 ( 869701 ) on Sunday May 19, 2013 @10:58AM (#43767895)

    So is he a bare-faced liar, or is the article summary bollocks? Sources please.

    Given the choice "X, or the article summary is bollocks", the correct answer is _always_ "the article summary is bollocks". You should know that.

    Now the truth is that Apple is indeed not funnelling domestic profits overseas. What they are doing, they are keeping overseas profits overseas.

  • Re:Remind me,,, (Score:5, Informative)

    by lightknight ( 213164 ) on Sunday May 19, 2013 @10:58AM (#43767897) Homepage

    Simple really: things look as different from the bottom as they do from the middle and the top. Your poor hate being poor, your middle class are typically striving to make it up another rung, and your rich don't want to fall from their perch. Your poor work with the idea of 'making it,' so that they can be free of the mentality of being poor, as well as the belief that with moving up the ladder means less problems; it does not, it just means different problems. When you're poor, you think as soon as you get another $10K, you'll pay back all your friends, be extra nice, relax, etc.: the reality is, when that $10K comes, your friends will find you, and any voluntary remembrance for their aid becomes an involuntary shakedown, during which the worst of humanity is shown to you. The middle class want to move up, going from middle middle class to upper middle class, or whatever; they try to curry favor on both sides: they want rich friends, the right connections, etc., but they also want to 'remember where they came from' with the poor, as some sort of pride of having worked their way up. The rich want to avoid becoming poor or middle class; it's one thing to be down several million from the fortune you inherited, it's another to not be able to afford to visit Europe whenever the whim strikes you.

    Each class has certain 'requirements' as far as being a part of it. This is why someone who acquires a fortune through a lottery is not suddenly thought of as being a part of the upper class; chances are, that money will be gone in a few year's time, and no attempt at understanding the change in class occurs.

    As for why everyone hates the government, why, that's simple: your host government is typically the one wielding the most amount of power over your life (save yourself, or your deity), and as such, is the scapegoat for everything that does wrong in your life during your day, from the stubbed toe you got rolling out of bed, to the parking ticket you received. He who has the power, gets the blame! It sucks, but it seems to hold true. Heck, the upper class has worked for ages on how to displace power from blame...that's why you have 'management' running companies, instead of the owners themselves. And their successes have been...somewhat lackluster, to be honest. Lately they've been getting nailed for it...see how many companies have gone tits up, and how the political class is basically losing any semblance of currency with the populace.

  • by tqk ( 413719 ) <> on Sunday May 19, 2013 @11:24AM (#43768005)

    The people at Apple and Google worked hard to earn that money, why should it be stolen from them to pay for giveaways to non-workers

    Because while taxation may be tantamount to theft and it may be inherently evil and it may be desirable to minimise it as much as possible, we haven't yet found a more effective way to fund government services ...

    Yes we have, long ago. We did it ourselves; often poorly or with spotty coverage, I agree, but certainly not at the price gov't charges for it. I'm not even speaking of the monetary price here either. Unfortunately, our parents and grandparents got lazy and drank the big gov't Koolaid, and we've been enslaved to it ever since, going in deeper with each succeeding generation.

    Perhaps our great grand-kids will fix it.

  • I guess you haven't been following it as closely as you think you have because Vince Cable's excuse was that Google is not doing anything illegal.

    The simple fact is that the Tory party does not want to close these loopholes because many of their friends make use of them. They make some noise about it, go on Radio 4 and Newsnight and announce it in the Commons, but are careful not to really do anything.

    The problem with only paying what the law requires is that these companies then arrange their corporate structure to avoid paying almost anything, against he spirit of the law. It then becomes a game of cat and mouse, except that parliament moves so slowly the mouse always finds a new hole to dive down as soon as there is talk of closing the old one off. You can't easily legislate to make them pay more tax, although it looks like the EU might have found a way to do it if every country acts simultaneously.

    Maybe the last line of any tax law should be "no funny games".

    Oh, and don't forget Google did actually lie. They said there were no sales done in the UK, yet most of their staff list sales as part of their duties on their CVs and in their job titles.

1 Angstrom: measure of computer anxiety = 1000 nail-bytes