Apple CEO Tim Cook calls EU tax ruling 'total political crap,' cites potential anti-US sentiment

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  • Reply 181 of 201
    So you're saying you don't believe in a level playing field for large and small companies?

    Small companies cannot afford the international accountants that exploit these loopholes.
    Then it's up to the country to put laws in place that don't have loopholes.  Stop moralizing.
    designr
  • Reply 182 of 201
    jpolster said:
    Apple generates profits in the EU and those profits have to be taxed properly (corporate Tax) somewhere.
    Spoken like a true EU socialist.  Blows my mind.
    designrSpamSandwich
  • Reply 183 of 201
    apple ][ said:
    Yeah I'm sure the US wants to give up its military bases in stable, friendly countries. Are you 12 years old?

    Some are not so stable, and some of them are not so friendly.

    Age is irrelevant, facts are relevant, reality is relevant.
    And your facts are? Most people are debating, sometimes emotionally, about tax. You're just making childish anti-European remarks that you haven't even thought through. The US isn't going to give up strategic military bases because of Apple. They want Apple to pay their fair share of tax too and this gives Apple more reason to do so.
    big brother 84
  • Reply 184 of 201
    toddzrx said:
    blitz1 said:
    BTW: the EU has been at peace for over 70 years, thanks to the EC/EU. That's a record.
    By all means, this fact alone has made the world a far better place.
    Correction: Europe has had the longest stretch of peace in its history since 1945 (over 70 years), thanks to the United States of America.  We occupied after WW2 and it's been at peace (not counting terrorism) ever since.
    Correction: The USA military were there chiefly to stop Russian aggression (for which we are all very grateful BTW). The EC/EU is there to help stop European countries fighting each other. 
    You really have a dim view of history, don't you?
  • Reply 185 of 201
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    apple ][ said:
    Yeah I'm sure the US wants to give up its military bases in stable, friendly countries. Are you 12 years old?

    Some are not so stable, and some of them are not so friendly.

    Age is irrelevant, facts are relevant, reality is relevant.
    And your facts are? Most people are debating, sometimes emotionally, about tax. You're just making childish anti-European remarks that you haven't even thought through. The US isn't going to give up strategic military bases because of Apple. They want Apple to pay their fair share of tax too and this gives Apple more reason to do so.
    I've thought things very through, and I have been anti-EU for many years now.

    And no, this isn't just about any alleged taxes. I see the entire greater picture.
  • Reply 186 of 201
    toddzrx said:
    So you're saying you don't believe in a level playing field for large and small companies?

    Small companies cannot afford the international accountants that exploit these loopholes.
    Then it's up to the country to put laws in place that don't have loopholes.  Stop moralizing.
    Someone has to. You are clearly devoid of morals
    franklinjackconsingularity
  • Reply 187 of 201
    Let loose the libertarian comment/vote storm against all who might side against Apple in this situation!

    Anti-American sentiment? Aw gee... That just isn't possible! The USA has never done anything wrong in how it conducts itself globally... :-p
    cnocbui
  • Reply 188 of 201
    blitz1 said:
    So, what's your game plan?
    Nationalistic isolationism. The death of keynesianism and the reintroduction of specie-backed, usury-free currency.
    BTW: the EU has been at peace for over 70 years 
    I love that this is the only argument EUites ever have. You consider rape epidemics and a terrorist attack every 40 hours “peace”?
    That’s a record.
    So the means by which you come to this definition is what, exactly? Conflict between nations on the continent itself? I genuinely want to know; I’m going to run back through the millennia and show them they’re either wrong or that their definition is meaningless.
    toddzrx
  • Reply 189 of 201
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    I love that this is the only argument EUites ever have. You consider rape epidemics and a terrorist attack every 40 hours “peace”?
    The ignorant morons don't even know what's in store for them.

    It's going to make 1945 look like a carnival. :#
  • Reply 190 of 201
    apple ][ said:
    It's going to make 1945 look like a carnival. :#
    ’45 or ’43? ’45 was only bad for POWs…
  • Reply 191 of 201
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    apple ][ said:
    It's going to make 1945 look like a carnival. :#
    ’45 or ’43? ’45 was only bad for POWs…
    Things weren't rosy for a number of years, starting in the thirties, but I chose 45 since that was the end of things, and many cities were basically reduced to rubble.

    I agree that it is open for discussion which year was the worst, though the whole period was obviously not good.
    tallest skil
  • Reply 192 of 201
    kevin keekevin kee Posts: 1,291member
    Just a few pointers:

    1. EU ordered Apple to pay $14.5B to Ireland, a money that Ireland refuse to take. Let's that sink in a bit. Ireland appeal EU decision, they don't want Apple's money. It's like: Mom asked you to pay your brother but you brother said 'no, I don't want it.' So will you pay your brother or not?
    2. Ireland is part of EU means only all goods sold in other EU countries can be handled single-market style by EU. Taxation however is handled by individual countries, varies by each government tax policies. EU has no say in here.
    3. Ireland has the lowest corporate income tax. As per above: By EU own policy, all profit from sales in other EU countries can be legally put in Ireland and the tax can be legally handled by Ireland. Logically, legally and from business stand point: Apple has done NO MISTAKE.

    The problem is the arrangement between Apple and Ireland. EU said:  "Apple only paid an effective corporate tax rate that declined from 1% in 2003 to 0.005% in 2014 on the profits of Apple Sales International.” Or in the words, EU declared: “illegal under EU state aid rules, because it gives Apple a significant advantage over other businesses that are subject to the same national taxation rules.”

     My question is WHY? See points number 1 to 3 above again and answer that if this is not some political bullshit from EU.

    The Irish government would, of course, be glad to enjoy a $14.5 billion tax revenue windfall. Their concern, however, is that taking the money could end up killing the goose that laid the golden egg. Ireland is a small country, with about 6.4 million inhabitants; it’s a little bit remote; and historically it’s traditionally been a bit of an economic backwater.

    And then, what does this have to do with Apple avoiding American taxes? If you are an American company, you owe taxes on all your profits, wherever the profits are earned. Except there’s a loophole. You are allowed to “defer” paying taxes on your foreign profits as long as that money is still owned by your foreign subsidiary. Here is hoping that Congress will change the law and allow that money to be repatriated at a lower rate. BUt until then, Apple and other global companies are right to take this advantage.
    edited September 2016 radarthekat
  • Reply 193 of 201
    nikon133nikon133 Posts: 2,600member

    It is sad to see Tim Cook taking this line. Most of the people on this forum will stay with Apple to the bitter end but vast swathes of the unconverted may just look at this situation and decide to go for Samsung for their next phone.
    LOL. Have you looked up how much Samsung pays in taxes in the EU? Can you produce any figures to show that it is at a higher rate than Apple does?
    The point I am making is that it is Apple that is getting all the bad publicity, made worse by Tim Cook's response. Unless Samsung get the same bad PR it won't affect them regardless of what they pay.
    If you think that switching to a thieving company like Samsung -- who, for all you know, could be paying less in taxes than Apple -- is the solution, knock yourself out! I personally don't think it will happen. My guess is as good as yours. 
    Well, Android has huge lead over iOS in Europe... over 70% of market share, compared to iOS 20+%? So EU is already on Samsung, more or less. Withdrawing Apple products from EU would not cause crisis or revolution. Apple would lose 750 million potential buyers in the future. I think long term, Apple would suffer more than EU.

    Insinuation that Samsung might be paying even less is hardly an argument. They might be paying less. They might be paying much more just as well. They also might be slammed with same retro-taxing in a week, or a month, or at any time, if they are also having some super-sweet deal with any EU country. But this is about Apple, not Samsung.

    From my completely unprofessional, simplified point of view - I'm IT, not economist - I think it is only fair, in general, that taxes are paid where money is made. I would dare say that Ireland should be allowed to give any company special taxes on products sold/money earned in Ireland, but as long as products are sold in whole EU, money made out there should be taxed accordingly. Everything else is open to machinations. Apple products are designed in US, but made in China. Part about US design can be scrutinized - Jonathan Ive is UK citizen, and still is EU citizen just as well. I'd bet that he works from UK home quite often, and in this era of fiber links and telepresense, I'd bet that some other non-US Apple designers and other professionals work often remotely just as well. Par about China production is pretty much set in stone. I'd guess then, if taxes are not paid in countries where money is earned, Chine should have as many, if not more, claims to taxes than US.
    gatorguybig brother 84
  • Reply 194 of 201
    actuary said:
    I cannot believe the unreasonableness of the responses to many of these issues coming up in the new recently. I will speak in generalities in an attempt to avoid flames from emotionally connected readers. You have to follow the rules that are on the books. If you don't like the rules (loopholes) fight to get them changed (plugged). There is a process in order to change the rules and retroactive implementation leads to chaos because strategy and decisions are made based on those established rules. Reading all these entitled, misinformed, logically flawed opinions leaves no wonder why our economy, politics, country & world is in such a mess. Is this the new normal?
    Ah yeah, it appears to be, but thanks for cutting through the rampant narcissism and pointing North.  There is hope!
  • Reply 195 of 201
    Aw, Timmy, sugar pie, you already have your hundreds of millions in the bank.  Don't get you panties in a wad about having to actually pay taxes once in a long while.  Not every country out ther is as stupid as the US;  hey actually expect corporations to also pay their fair share to support the commons.  After all, Timmy, corporations are people, and all people have to pay taxes.
    big brother 84
  • Reply 196 of 201
    kevin keekevin kee Posts: 1,291member
    Gymkhana said:
    Aw, Timmy, sugar pie, you already have your hundreds of millions in the bank.  Don't get you panties in a wad about having to actually pay taxes once in a long while.  Not every country out ther is as stupid as the US;  hey actually expect corporations to also pay their fair share to support the commons.  After all, Timmy, corporations are people, and all people have to pay taxes.
    Apple pay Tax, the problem is EU (not Ireland) want more. Tax has nothing to do with EU just like your house rent has nothing to do with your neighbor. How do you feel if your neighbor ask you to pay more rent while your landlord himself do not want your money?

    note: see my post above for explanation of the issue.
    edited September 2016
  • Reply 197 of 201
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 3,402moderator

    Apple does not rely on Irish accounting procedures to avoid paying profits taxes on foreign sales, but to delay paying them until later. The tax code doesn't levy the tax until the foreign earnings actually cross the border. Apple, like other companies, do that because of two widely held views: the tax rate (%) levied by the USA on foreign earnings is currently too high, and tax reform (lower tax rates) are likely in the relatively near future.

    Now, Apple computes its what-if tax bill every year, based on the assumption that its foreign earnings were actually remitted back to the USA. Then Apple sets those dollars aside (cash, Treasury bonds, etc.) while waiting for the day when Congress reforms the tax code. That obligation is shown as a liability on Apple's balance sheet, and the Treasury bonds are part of its "cash and equivalents" reported in the press. One day, Apple will remit its foreign earnings from past years, and also pay its tax bill to the IRS -- at the new, post-reform tax rate.

    The EU evidently wants to lay hands on that money before the US tax code is reformed. Its actions are based on the erroneous argument that Apple has somehow colluded with Ireland to escape taxation -- as opposed to legally delaying the date of taxation until a more propitious time.

    Apple has not evaded its taxes. No individual EU nation is claiming that it did, and the IRS recognizes that Apple is in compliance with US law. Tim Cook is right.
    So is it alright if I get my iPhone 7 and hold off paying for it until such time as Apple brings it down to a price that I think is fair?
    No, but you can invest your pretax dollars in your 401(k) to defer taxes until you retire. Legally. Just like Apple is deferring repatriation. Legally.
    Capriguy
  • Reply 198 of 201
    apple ][ said:
    I love that this is the only argument EUites ever have. You consider rape epidemics and a terrorist attack every 40 hours “peace”?
    The ignorant morons don't even know what's in store for them.

    It's going to make 1945 look like a carnival. :#
    There you go again with your facts
    big brother 84tallest skil
  • Reply 199 of 201
    cnocbuicnocbui Posts: 3,613member
    Very interesting article by the former European Commissioner in The Guardian, saying publicly that the EU tax ruling is "fundamentally unfair" and that "EU member states have a sovereign right to determine their own tax laws, and state aid cannot be used to rewrite those rules. The current state-aid investigations into tax rulings appear to do exactly that."  https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/sep/01/eu-state-aid-tax-avoidance-apple

    As might be expected, its readers are going berserk... :D
    She has been made to look incompetent and a slacker by the new more dynamic incumbent.  Sour grapes is to be expected because her reputation has taken a big hit.

    Meanwhile, her judgement has been made to look even poorer by Nobel prize winning economist, Joseph Stiglitz:

    Stiglitz slams 'dishonest' Apple and ‘totally irresponsible’ Tim Cook
    http://www.cnbc.com/2016/09/01/stiglitz-slams-dishonest-apple-and-totally-irresponsible-tim-cook.html


  • Reply 200 of 201
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,301member
    I don't think anyone here who is familiar with Philip Elmer DeWitt would think he is not a friend of Apple. He's been hugely supportive of them over the years. Not in this case tho. 

    Articles of his in recent days have suggested Mr. Cook is less than totally forthright in some comments and that for the good of Apple he should find a way of of this tax mess instead on continuing put forth the same arguments about Apple and taxes and the EU.   

    PED is no troll, and those so dead set on Apple arguing to the death against the tax payments might want to read what he's had to say in the past couple of days. Visit PED30.com to read them. 

    EDIT: On a side note China has now opened an antitrust investigation that could involve Apple and revolves around the Didi Chuxing/Uber deal.  I'm sure AI will put an article up soon. 
    edited September 2016
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