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U.S. Senator 'livid' about Apple's U.S. tax dealings

post #1 of 95
Thread Starter 
When asked about Apple's supposed "sidestepping" of U.S. tax laws, Senator Tom Colburn (R-Okla.) said that he was "livid about that" and used the company as an example of why the country needs tax reform.

During a Tuesday interview on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," Sen. Coburn aired his feelings regarding Apple's use of offshore holdings to avoid paying high tax rates in countries like the U.S. and England, reports Business Insider.

The senator said that he was "livid" about the situation, referring to a New York Times piece that claims Apple uses various tax loopholes to save billions of dollars each year.

"Why should Apple pay at 10 percent and some other company that can't export their technology ... why are they paying 35 percent?" Sen. Coburn said.

According to the Times report, the iPad maker pays a tax rate of only 9.8 percent, though some have questioned the calculations quoted in the piece saying that the results are based on incorrect data. Forbes claims that the Times "compared the profits in 2011 not with the taxes paid on profits from 2011. It has compared profits in 2011 with the taxes calculated on the basis of 2010′s profits."

Also critical of the calculations was Fox Business which said "the Times likely used a lower effective rate for Apple versus what the rate really is, which makes the story sound more shocking than it is."

In any case, Sen. Coburn used the opportunity to discuss the current tax code situation in America and alludes to a possible probe into the matter noting that he sent a letter to Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) saying "we've gotta look at this."



While Coburn agrees that there should be incentives for multi-national corporations like Apple to invest worldwide profits in domestic enterprise, he wants to close so-called "loopholes" in the current tax code that allow for tax havens. He mentions Apple's use of its Ireland headquarters and a Caribbean-based offshoot to shelter the company from high tax rates.

Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski asked specifically about a repatriation holiday in which large companies can bring capital back into the U.S. with a lower tax rate in return for certain investment promises like job creation, an event that occurred in 2004 with little effect. In response, Sen. Coburn said that he would support such an initiative as long as stricter controls are placed on money movement.

"You can't just do that, you gotta reform the tax code," Sen. Coburn said. "If [the U.S. doesn't] reform [its] corporate tax code?We're in a global economy, we're not competetive now, we now have the highest corporate tax in the world and only those that have intellectual property that can move the location of that intellectual property offshore can get [tax rates] down."

Sen. Coburn goes on to say that the U.S. needs to rid its tax code of loopholes that allow the "well endowed" to avoid high rates.

"Let's clean it out," Sen. Coburn said. "Let's make it transparent. And let's make it fair."
post #2 of 95
If you charge high rates for corporate tax then expect companies to move their business elsewhere. Surely 10% of xx billion dollars is better than 35% of sod all?
post #3 of 95
Shut up and toe the line before we vote you out. Or, better yet, if you're so enraged about this, where have you been for the past FORTY YEARS?!

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post #4 of 95

Has this moron been living in a cave or what? The top 25 corps in this country pay less than 4% federal taxes per year due to overseas tax shelters and tax code loopholes. He's just now figuring this out? Yeah right.

post #5 of 95

Another Dork on the hill using poor facts from an article by a new york rag circling the rim as it gets flushed into irrelevance.

post #6 of 95

In other news Apple is outraged by the taxes paid by US Senators. 

 

"The Debt Bomb?" So has the government secretly been funding Apple's Bank account? is that why Apple is flush with cash and the Government is broke? 

 

I've got an idea - let's penalize a very successful company for doing so by complying with the very laws that you have put into effect and then point fingers at that company and insist that it is their fault. 

post #7 of 95

Funny that Coburn is one of the biggest proponents of massive multibillion dollar subsidies for oil companies, but doesn't approve of Apple legally following the tax laws?

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post #8 of 95

Yeah, he wasn't so livid when it was his buddy Aubrey McClendon at Chesapeake getting filthy rich off the same tax games and oil subsidies.

post #9 of 95

At least they are talking about a full reform.  These tax codes evolved over time.  That makes the most sense.  Although when you need to factor in the state level, it gets more complicated.  Some states don't like the feds telling them how they should tax.

post #10 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by esummers View Post
At least they are talking about a full reform.

 

I'll believe it when I see it. They can start to regain my confidence by doing full reform of my taxes first, not just companies'.

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post #11 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

Funny that Coburn is one of the biggest proponents of massive multibillion dollar subsidies for oil companies, but doesn't approve of Apple legally following the tax laws?

Unfortunately your post is really why it's almost impossible to sort out the tax system in a fair and balanced way, since pretty much everyone involved in the political system has their own special interests that they conveniently overlook.

 

At a high level, he has a point.  It's not fair that Apple can massively lower their tax bill (as do Google by diverting a staggering amount of their profits through Ireland), but I don't blame them for doing it.  Everyone has a right to manage their financial affairs to the best benefit of themselves.  I do it myself with my tax return and investment strategies.

 

What is needed is an impartial group of people who oversee the laws and tax system to make sure it's fair for everyone, and operates in the best interest of all the people.

 

Sadly, with the corrupt bunch of morons in government at the moment (on both sides of the aisle), that is a long way from happening.

post #12 of 95

This from the Senator who said:

 

COBURN: Continuing the [Bush] tax cuts isn’t a cost, if you added new taxes, new tax cuts, I would agree that’s a cost. It’s not a cost. That’s where we are today. That’s the baseline. It doesn’t score anything to continue them. It costs money if we increase, which I would be willing to do. I think we ought to cut corporate taxes.

post #13 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

I'll believe it when I see it. They can start to regain my confidence by doing full reform of my taxes first, not just companies'.

You're absolutely right.  As JRagosta mentioned, to Coburn, full reform would mean, "everything except those deductions that relate to oil companies".

post #14 of 95
Let me guess this clown is up for re-election this year. Oh and playing to the liberal audience on MSLSD.
post #15 of 95

Mitt Romney - who is running for President - DOES THE SAME THING AS APPLE.  He pays 12% tax despite being a multi-multimillionaire.  Talk to him about his Caymen Island and Swiss Bank Accounts.  Talk to him about the taxes he avoids paying by not bringing the money back to the USA.

 

There is nothing wrong with what Apple is doing.  Microsoft does it.  IBM does it.  Mitt Romney does it.

post #16 of 95

It is not a tax shelter if you keep your money overseas.  That isn't income in the U.S.  

post #17 of 95

You guys can start with your presidential nominee. 

post #18 of 95

Bottom line is that Coburn is criticizing a company for complying with US tax regulations, many of which he has had a hand in forming.

post #19 of 95

I'm sorry, but these clowns in Washington are the very reason tax loopholes exist.  I must have missed when the republican, Tom Colburn, complained about Mitt Romney hiding money overseas and using tax loopholes.  He'll probably endorse Romney!  Funny how it's wrong unless a republican is doing it.  What. A. Hypocrite.

 

I think all of these tax loopholes need to be closed.

post #20 of 95

News Flash: U.S. Senator "livid" about congress-approved tax laws that reduces tax revenue.
 

post #21 of 95
He's livid yet everything that Apple is doIng is 100% legal and common. What a dork.

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post #22 of 95

Great PR to help sell his book - sad
 

post #23 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmvsm View Post

Has this moron been living in a cave or what? The top 25 corps in this country pay less than 4% federal taxes per year due to overseas tax shelters and tax code loopholes. He's just now figuring this out? Yeah right.

If your numbers are right (I haven't checked them), then Apple pays over twice the rate of taxes of the top 25 corps.

 

I was reading Sen. Coburn's comments in the above story and it seems he believes corp taxes are too high, yet he feels there are too many loopholes. Does he want corp taxes to go up or down?

 

Obama and Apple want to be able to bring profits earned outside the USA into the USA so they can be invested here, but can't bring the profits home without being double taxed. Senator Huff-n-stuff Colburn hasn't been able to allow that because it was a Democratic idea. At least that's how I see it.

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post #24 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


"You can't just do that, you gotta reform the tax code," Sen. Coburn said. "If [the U.S. doesn't] reform [its] corporate tax code?We're in a global economy, we're not competetive now, we now have the highest corporate tax in the world and only those that have intellectual property that can move the location of that intellectual property offshore can get [tax rates] down."

Sen. Coburn goes on to say that the U.S. needs to rid its tax code of loopholes that allow the "well endowed" to avoid high rates.

"Let's clean it out," Sen. Coburn said. "Let's make it transparent. And let's make it fair."

While we're at it, lets eliminate all the government subsidies for your patrons in the oil and natural gas industries, right?

post #25 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

If your numbers are right (I haven't checked them), then Apple pays over twice the rate of taxes of the top 25 corps.

 

I was reading Sen. Coburn's comments in the above story and it seems he believes corp taxes are too high, yet he feels there are too many loopholes. Does he want corp taxes to go up or down?

 

Obama and Apple want to be able to bring profits earned outside the USA into the USA so they can be invested here, but can't bring the profits home without being double taxed. Senator Huff-n-stuff Colburn hasn't been able to allow that because it was a Democratic idea. At least that's how I see it.

Individuals, corporations and governments all seem to prefer complaining that the global economy has made the world more competitive and fast-paced. My gripe with this is it ignores all the fundamental benefits that go along with it; bottom line, I don't feel any corporation or person should be forced or limited in where or how they conduct business. If our government wanted to strengthen the economy, they'd be lowering taxes in general. They want more Americans depending on social services and governments jobs, period.

post #26 of 95

Is he "livid" about everyone else doing it too? 

 

Or is it just Apple because they've achieved enough mindshare to care about?

post #27 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post

Mitt Romney - who is running for President - DOES THE SAME THING AS APPLE.  He pays 12% tax despite being a multi-multimillionaire.  Talk to him about his Caymen Island and Swiss Bank Accounts.  Talk to him about the taxes he avoids paying by not bringing the money back to the USA.

 

There is nothing wrong with what Apple is doing.  Microsoft does it.  IBM does it.  Mitt Romney does it.

 

Romney's tax rate is a result of the lower tax rate applied to capital gains, not overseas tax shelters.

 

But your larger point is valid. That anybody (or any company) who follows the law should not be lambasted for following the laws. It's particularly rich when the complaint comes from a member of congress. The body solely responsible for the ridiculously complex structure of our tax system.

post #28 of 95
I try to stay away from politically charged issues, but this goes for all in Washington as well as here on AI.

You either have the same feeling/opinion on this issue whether it is Apple, Inc. or Mitt Romney, or you are a hypocrite.

Both Apple and Romney are following the letter of the law. So any "outrage" that is more than just election year rhetoric should be focused on the issue, not the person/company.

For instance, Apple get's breaks because it also employes thousands of workers who also pay taxes. Most of Romney's income these past few years comes from interest, which the money he earned to make those investments with was taxed, likely at a higher rate.
post #29 of 95

I sure hope this guy does not claim any deductions on his 940 and paid payroll taxes on his hired help. These are the type of idiots that have put this country where it is. If we ran our country the way Apple runs it's business we would all pay alot less in taxes and would not have a 3rd world economy.

post #30 of 95

"I am shocked...SHOCKED that Apple is using the loopholes that Congress and my party in particular wrote into the tax code!"

 

Unbelievable.

post #31 of 95

It all began with the Reagan administration.

post #32 of 95

YES, and tax reform means, stop taxing the people through graft inflation which is done by digitally printing more money by the Federal Reserve (remember "quantitative easing"?!  that is just a hidden tax as your dollars become worth less!) -- gee funny thing that a FULL audit of the Federal Reserve (which is as federal as Federal Express!) has NEVER BEEN DONE.  Time to return to gold and silver backed currency, so the government no longer has a hidden tax inflation partner (Federal Reserve) to screw Americans out of their wealth!

 

Also, the economy and our freedom demands government scale spending WAY BACK TO CONSTITUTIONALLY AUTHORIZED FUNCTIONS (most of what government does today is illegal under our Constitution).  

 

Next stop personal and corporate income taxation which is illegally enforced, yet voluntary.  The cat is out of the box, and government just uses guns to lock people up who exercise their voluntary choice -- ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.  Learn the truth people, your government cannot be trusted.  When the people fear the government, there is tyranny, when the government fears the people, there is liberty.  We live in dangerous times with government running rampant over our hard earned money and freedoms. 

 

Videos to learn from:

Part 1:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=2208477968446177859

Part 2:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-5009035314360427692&q=irwin+schiff's+secrets&hl=en

 

Get the book, now FREE in PDF:  http://www.paynoincometax.com/federalmafia.htm

 

and join the fight for freedom:

http://campaignforliberty.com

 

Some great news sources that cover REAL NEWS, that you won't hear much of, on the old dinosaur media:

http://infowars.com

 

http://drudgereport.com


Edited by libertyforall - 5/1/12 at 5:39pm
post #33 of 95

Perhaps they can take a leaf from Apple's book and charge a flat 30% tax on everything. The statute would be staggeringly small and would not favour one type of income over another. Half the reason for Congress existing would be eliminated.

post #34 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by libertyforall View Post

YES, and tax reform means, stop taxing the people through graft inflation which is done by digitally printing more money by the Federal Reserve (remember "quantitative easing"?!  that is just a hidden tax as your dollars become worth less!) -- gee funny thing that a FULL audit of the Federal Reserve (which is as federal as Federal Express!) has NEVER BEEN DONE.  Time to return to gold and silver backed currency, so the government no longer has a hidden tax inflation partner (Federal Reserve) to screw Americans out of their wealth!

 

Also, the economy and our freedom demands government scale spending WAY BACK TO CONSTITUTIONALLY AUTHORIZED FUNCTIONS (most of what government does today is illegal under our Constitution).  

 

Next stop personal and corporate income taxation which is illegally enforced, yet voluntary.  The cat is out of the box, and government just uses guns to lock people up who exercise their voluntary choice -- ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.  Learn the truth people, your government cannot be trusted.  When the people fear the government, there is tyranny, when the government fears the people, there is liberty.  We live in dangerous times with government running rampant over our hard earned money and freedoms. 

 

Videos to learn from:

Part 1:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=2208477968446177859

Part 2:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-5009035314360427692&q=irwin+schiff's+secrets&hl=en

 

See:  http://paynoincometax.com  

 

and join the fight for freedom:

http://campaignforliberty.com

 

Some great news sources that cover REAL NEWS, that you won't hear much of, on the old dinosaur media:

http://infowars.com

 

http://drudgereport.com

If it's not constitutional, why has is not come before the Supreme Court and struck down? Am I missing something?

post #35 of 95

I wish we could vote out the entire Congress this political season, and start from scratch.

 

What an arrogant, dysfunctional bunch of losers. And pathetic leeches too.

post #36 of 95

This country needs a Congress clean out more than anything and get rid of the archaic, self serving worthless idiots up in Washington.  Although the Senate does not have this program, the House does.  Love how they have a six figure salary paid by the taxpayer and then they get to have a tax payer funded leased car to boot!  You think they are going to drive a Toyota Corolla?  Heck no.  See what your tax dollars are leasing.  You think if they have a six figure salary, they'd use "their" own (actually ours) money.

 

Maybe the good Senator should try being a little livid with himself, his worthless cohorts who fail at their job everyday (how's that yearly budget as prescribed by the US Constitution that is now going on three years and the Senate has yet to produce one) and the institution that is Congress, both houses, are just as inept and corrupt!  Think I have a bone with politicians?  Damn straight, regardless of party?  Not if they were ethical representatives!  However to achieve this, Congress (House and Senate) need TERM LIMITS today!

/

/

/

Ten years ago, we had Steve Jobs, Bob Hope and Johnny Cash.  Today we have no Jobs, no Hope and no Cash.

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post #37 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

Let me guess this clown is up for re-election this year. Oh and playing to the liberal audience on MSLSD.

If you look back at the electoral map for the 2008 presidential election, you will notice that Oklahoma was the only state in the US that had zero counties go for Obama. 100% for McCain. There are no liberals in Oklahoma to play to.

post #38 of 95

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post #39 of 95
Apple seems to be the flavour of the month.
post #40 of 95
It is a very complicated convoluted mess, and intentionally so on the government's part. But as Irwin Schiff would say, the laws are ok, it is truly voluntary, but it is illegally enforced. Up until 1913, there was no Income Tax, funny, the same year Income Tax was created, the Federal Reserve was also inaugurated -- YES THERE IS A CORRELATION!

Watch the videos and read the PDF book the Federal Mafia, and most all your questions will be answered. You may need to read and watch multiple times to get all the meaning, due to the scope of the graft deception known as the Income Tax and separate Wage Tax (withholding, which is also voluntary).

It is great that you have a healthy curiosity, so keep asking questions, and you will find the answers! It comes down to the fact that the law (16th Amendment which was not even legitimately passed), but even so it is still voluntary, so the laws are ok. The rub is that it is illegally enforced which makes it unconstitutional, and that would have to be the challenge to the Supreme Court.

Quote:
Originally Posted by djsherly View Post

If it's not constitutional, why has is not come before the Supreme Court and struck down? Am I missing something?
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