Corporations may be considered people by the the Supreme Court but unlike people they can completely avoid paying any income taxes at all. My wife and I have paid income tax every year of our entire married life. How can corporations pay their CEO more than they pay in US income tax? A new report from the Institute for Policy Studies outlines the problem:Executive Excess 2011: The Massive CEO Rewards for Tax Dodging. (the full 46 page report: page 31 and 32 has a table showing corporate profits, CEO pay, and how much was their IRS refund )
"corporations don't dodge taxes. People do. The people who run corporations. And these people — America's CEOs — are reaping awesomely lavish rewards for the tax dodging they have their corporations do. In fact, corporate tax dodging has gone so out of control that 25 major U.S. corporations last year paid their chief executives more than they paid Uncle Sam in federal income taxes."The full article from the Institute for Policy Studies: "The massive CEO rewards for tax dodging"
Tax-dodging corporations argue they are breaking no laws. They are just, the argument goes, operating "under the rules that Congress has established." They are indeed. But massive corporate outlays for lobbying and campaign contributions shape those rules. The 25 firms highlighted in this study spent a combined total of more than $150 million on lobbying and campaign contributions last year.
All the companies highlighted in this report benefit enormously from their institutional presence in the United States. They utilize our taxpayer-funded infrastructure for transportation. They tap into government-sponsored research and subsidies for technological innovation. They expect the U.S. law enforcement and judicial systems to protect their intellectual and physical property. And they rely on the U.S. military to defend their assets abroad.
However, these freeloader corporations and the republicans politicians they support (GE spent 41 million on lobbying last year) expect you and I to pay them to do business in the US. For example, GE which is the largest corporation in the US, paid zero dollars in income tax last year on overseas profits of 14 billion and 5 billion profit in the US. Not only did this corporation pay no income taxes they received a 3.3 billion dollar REFUND. Jeffrey Immelt the CEO of GE did rather well for himself earning a check 15.2 million dollars. GE has laid off 19,000 US workers in the last 2 years and has closed 31 US manufacturing plants since 2008. Jeffrey Immelt the CEO of GE who doesn't pay US corporate income taxes, ships jobs overseas, and closes US manufacturing plants is chairman of Obama's Council on Jobs and Competitiveness.
I can't wait to see Obama's new jobs program.
Sign our petition to Congress demanding the passage of the Stop Corporate Tax Haven Abuse Act.
This clip from Lawrence O'Donnel, royally roasts GE and their 24,000 page corporate income tax form.