EU presses Apple for details on latest tax arrangements in wake of Paradise Papers

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Comments

  • Reply 41 of 82
    frankiefrankie Posts: 370member
    jbdragon said:
    tshapi said:
    foggyhill said:
    Even if it were true, which Apple is disputing, It's legal, so WTF is it to them.
    Close up your fracked up laws and live with the consequences of that, or shut the hell up about your mock consternation. I'm not fooled by this though this grandstanding my impress the peanut gallery.
    This kind of double talk were those guys (in the EU and abroad) are all amazed that tax paradise exist when most of them have all their money there is sounds pretty hollow.
    This is akin to the Claude Rains character being disturbed gambling is going on in that place while collecting his winnings in the film Casablanca.

    It’s not “legal” it’s a back door deal. Why would anyone want to build there company in any other country If Ireland is providing a tax shelter? So the eu get compelled to kill it. 
    Who created those back doors? The Politicians did!!! They are legal until such time as the law is changed to close them.
    Of course.  Just like tin the USA, businesses BUY politicians and this happens on both sides of the aisle.  At least the Dems tried to overturn Citizen's United.

    Regardless it's why we need to change the laws, both for money to politicians as well as tax avoidance.
  • Reply 42 of 82
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,985member
    tmay said:
    gatorguy said:
    tmay said:
    avon b7 said:
    fred1 said:
    So much EU bashing, and why?  Do you live in the EU? (Have you ever even been to an EU country?). Did you say that the US shouldn’t exist when Congress was supposedly investigating where Aplle stashes its profits?

    These EU officials are doing their job: enforcing the tax laws. Why does this seem so strange to you?
    Yes. You are right. I commented in another thread on exactly what the commissioner has said now someone tried to claim I was using 'weasel' words. LOL.

    All of this is being investigated as we speak. The amount of documents in this leak is vast, so vast that the work will take time to be carried out. We have already seen some prickly documents.

    While all the information is verified and cross referenced, the commissioners and ministers of member states will formerly require the individuals and companies to 'fill in any gaps' on previous declarations in the cases of open investigations. 

    We will see, much further down the line, just how legal the actions of those involved is, but in the case of Apple they have taken a battering in public opinion through the revelations in the press. That is precisely why Apple made a statement in the first place.

    Some people seem to be having trouble accepting this, others just hate the EU.

    I would be worried if the EU didn't do anything. You can be sure the US is also perusing the documents too.

    Trying to make out this hasn't been a PR nightmare is frankly difficult to understand.

    It's not a surprise, its not a PR nightmare, it's completely legal, the U.S. isn't going to do anything about this, but thanks to you, as usual, for pumping up the FUD. 

    https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/07/report-apple-revamped-overseas-ops-to-find-new-tax-havens.html

    "The company said that it told regulators in the U.S. and European Commission of the reorganization of its Irish subsidiaries in 2015 and said the moves did not reduce its tax payments in any country."
    I'm sure it didn't reduce Apple's tax payments. It would be really difficult to get them even lower. The move was obviously meant as a way to maintain and continue the same tax avoidance structure that the Irish began closing the door on in 2015 following the EU expose'. I would have been more surprised if the EU Commission did NOT want more details on it since the intent was to stop the practice going forward. 
    Yet, that's Apple's statement, that they provided the details to the EU. Pretty easy to verify that I would think.
    I don't think I've read that Apple already gave'm all the details. Only that the EU was advised of a change in organization. Maybe they did and I just hadn't read about it. 
    edited November 2017
  • Reply 43 of 82
    tmaytmay Posts: 3,452member
    gatorguy said:
    tmay said:
    gatorguy said:
    tmay said:
    avon b7 said:
    fred1 said:
    So much EU bashing, and why?  Do you live in the EU? (Have you ever even been to an EU country?). Did you say that the US shouldn’t exist when Congress was supposedly investigating where Aplle stashes its profits?

    These EU officials are doing their job: enforcing the tax laws. Why does this seem so strange to you?
    Yes. You are right. I commented in another thread on exactly what the commissioner has said now someone tried to claim I was using 'weasel' words. LOL.

    All of this is being investigated as we speak. The amount of documents in this leak is vast, so vast that the work will take time to be carried out. We have already seen some prickly documents.

    While all the information is verified and cross referenced, the commissioners and ministers of member states will formerly require the individuals and companies to 'fill in any gaps' on previous declarations in the cases of open investigations. 

    We will see, much further down the line, just how legal the actions of those involved is, but in the case of Apple they have taken a battering in public opinion through the revelations in the press. That is precisely why Apple made a statement in the first place.

    Some people seem to be having trouble accepting this, others just hate the EU.

    I would be worried if the EU didn't do anything. You can be sure the US is also perusing the documents too.

    Trying to make out this hasn't been a PR nightmare is frankly difficult to understand.

    It's not a surprise, its not a PR nightmare, it's completely legal, the U.S. isn't going to do anything about this, but thanks to you, as usual, for pumping up the FUD. 

    https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/07/report-apple-revamped-overseas-ops-to-find-new-tax-havens.html

    "The company said that it told regulators in the U.S. and European Commission of the reorganization of its Irish subsidiaries in 2015 and said the moves did not reduce its tax payments in any country."
    I'm sure it didn't reduce Apple's tax payments. It would be really difficult to get them even lower. The move was obviously meant as a way to maintain and continue the same tax avoidance structure that the Irish began closing the door on in 2015 following the EU expose'. I would have been more surprised if the EU Commission did NOT want more details on it since the intent was to stop the practice going forward. 
    Yet, that's Apple's statement, that they provided the details to the EU. Pretty easy to verify that I would think.
    I don't think I've read that Apple already gave'm all the details. Only that the EU was advised of a change in organization. Maybe they did and I just hadn't read about it. 
    http://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/r-eus-vestager-says-seeking-details-on-apples-recent-tax-set-up-2017-11-1007166078

    European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, who issued the record back-tax bill against Apple in August 2016, said she wanted to make sure the company now complies with the bloc's rules which ban unfair state aid.

    "I have been asking for an update on the arrangement made by Apple, the recent way they have been organised, in order to get the feeling whether or not this is in accordance with our European rules but that remains to be seen," Vestager told a news briefing on the sidelines of an international tech summit in Lisbon.

    "We are looking into this of course without any kind of prejudice, just to get the information," she said.

    Not saying that this shouldn't be investigated, it should be, but it appears that some posters here have a decided axe to grind with Apple that has less to do with their business practices, and more to do with their ongoing personal bias against Apple.

    Plenty of FUD dispersed yesterday and today on all sides.

    stompy
  • Reply 44 of 82
    In the short term Apple and others seem to have little to worry about.

    In the longer term, I think they will have a reckoning. If the EU, US and China decide to put the clamps on this kind of thing it will come to a halt.
  • Reply 45 of 82
    farmboyfarmboy Posts: 152member
    abriden said:
    I'm not a socialist. I wasn't thinking public employees as such, rather I was thinking better public services. Use your imagination, there's no end to the potential good that could be done if everyone paid tax on the basis of moral obligation, rather than secrecy and the size of their respective legal budgets.
    Cool. Well, you know, we all want to change the world (as the song went). So tell me how to quantify my "moral obligation". Sorry, that's not a basis, that's kumbaya. 





    tallest skil
  • Reply 46 of 82
    tmaytmay Posts: 3,452member
    In the short term Apple and others seem to have little to worry about.

    In the longer term, I think they will have a reckoning. If the EU, US and China decide to put the clamps on this kind of thing it will come to a halt.
    China deciding to "put the clamps" on these kind of things is probably not how I would describe it, but whatever. People must be aware that China has a rather unorthodox "Capitalism", to say the least, where IP theft is routine, and barriers to entry are many and varied.
    stompyradarthekat
  • Reply 47 of 82
    farmboy said:
    abriden said:
    I'm not a socialist. I wasn't thinking public employees as such, rather I was thinking better public services. Use your imagination, there's no end to the potential good that could be done if everyone paid tax on the basis of moral obligation, rather than secrecy and the size of their respective legal budgets.
    Cool. Well, you know, we all want to change the world (as the song went). So tell me how to quantify my "moral obligation". Sorry, that's not a basis, that's kumbaya. 





    Your moral obligation is to play by the rules ...in this case, taxation. There is no proof at this stage that Apple has been operating legally, and in fact, it's obvious that in the case of their Irish arrangement they were not operating within EU law. Using secrecy and bogus companies to bounce profits around the world, citing fees for which there are no related man hours or infrastructure, etc and doing so secretly, offshore so as to circumvent the transparency that is provided by publishing ones accounts for scrutiny which is required domestic law, is entirely dishonest. It certainly is not in the 'spirit of the law' as claimed by Tim Cook. If Apple markets itself as upholding the highest values (and it does) then it has to do better.

    The fact is big-businesses and the banks own politics, nowhere more than America, so the answer isn't simply to blame the law-makers. Two wrongs don't make a right — yes the law needs changing, but those that avoid and evade tax have massive influence. Somewhere, someone is getting paid to facilitate these arrangements and influence legislature, which means that someone (Apple and others) are paying them. That's immoral.
  • Reply 48 of 82
    abriden said:
    FFS this isn't an issue about socialism.
    It is when you start demanding taxes as a “moral imperative.”
    It's about justice, and the principle that we all play by the same rules.
    Hence my repeated calls for the repeal of the personal income tax and the establishment of a flat business income tax across all sizes of business and all means of income.
    These so-called tax avoidance schemes are NOT necessarily legal…
    Tax avoidance is legal. Tax evasion is not.
    …as the secrecy and mechanisms used to hide profits and present non-existent fees have not been open to scrutiny.
    Right; that’s something with which I don’t hold.

    bshank
  • Reply 49 of 82
    bb-15bb-15 Posts: 245member
    abriden said:
    To those who have so far defended Apple's tax avoidance and blame the laws rather than those abusing them, it is by no means certain that Apple have operated legally at all — by all accounts the arrangement with the Irish government was illegal and the subject of an EU investigation. Secrecy is the reason these tax avoidance schemes have thus far been allowed to happen unchallenged, but hopefully the so-called Paradise Papers will prompt reforms (though I won't hold my breath).

    There is a reason why private and public companies have to publish their accounts for transparency — hiding the money in countries with greater secrecy does not make it legal.
    You are misinformed. 
    1. The tax situation in Ireland was not secret. It is based on the double Irish arrangement which has been in effect since the late 1980s.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_Irish_arrangement

    2. The tax arrangement between Ireland and Apple was legal in Ireland. Why? Because Ireland is a sovereign nation which can pass its own laws which are enforced by its government.
    - And again this arrangement has been known for decades.

    3. The EU does not strip the Irish government of all its power. Ireland is appealing the actions of the EU in this situation.
    Ireland believes that the tax situation with Apple is appropriate.

    4. You imply that Apple does nothing to contribute to the funding of services in Ireland. That is false.
    - Apple employs 4,000 workers in Cork (6,000 total in the country). The income of those workers helps the Irish economy which in turn helps to fund services. 
    - Apple's profits in Ireland are taxed at the rate of 12.5% in an agreement with the Irish government. Besides being legal, 12.5% is not 0%.
    The tax money from Apple in Ireland helps the Irish economy and therefore services in Ireland.
    - Apple pays lots of taxes around the world. Probably more taxes than any other company. All of that money helps to fund services.  

    5. Finally, the money that Apple is holding outside of the US has to do with US taxes. Apple wants a lower US tax rate before paying US taxes on that money. This money from the view of the US and Apple, is not about taxes that should go to the EU. 

    edited November 2017 radarthekat
  • Reply 50 of 82
    These so-called tax avoidance schemes are NOT necessarily legal…
    Tax avoidance is legal. Tax evasion is not.

    I know the difference, which is why I say 'so-called' — many schemes have claimed to be legal tax avoidance, but the release of the Paradise Papers demonstrates that at least some constitute illegal tax evasion. It remains to be seen which category Apple's arrangements fall when they are properly scrutinised.
    tallest skil
  • Reply 51 of 82

    bb-15 said:
    abriden said:
    To those who have so far defended Apple's tax avoidance and blame the laws rather than those abusing them, it is by no means certain that Apple have operated legally at all — by all accounts the arrangement with the Irish government was illegal and the subject of an EU investigation. Secrecy is the reason these tax avoidance schemes have thus far been allowed to happen unchallenged, but hopefully the so-called Paradise Papers will prompt reforms (though I won't hold my breath).

    There is a reason why private and public companies have to publish their accounts for transparency — hiding the money in countries with greater secrecy does not make it legal.
    You are misinformed. 
    1. The tax situation in Ireland was not secret. It is based on the double Irish arrangement which has been in effect since the late 1980s.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_Irish_arrangement

    2. The tax arrangement between Ireland and Apple was legal in Ireland. Why? Because Ireland is a sovereign nation which can pass its own laws which are enforced by its government.
    - And again this arrangement has been known for decades.

    3. The EU does not strip the Irish government of all its power. Ireland is appealing the actions of the EU in this situation.
    Ireland believes that the tax situation with Apple is appropriate.

    4. You imply that Apple does nothing to contribute to the funding of services in Ireland. That is false.
    - Apple employs 4,000 workers in Cork (6,000 total in the country). The income of those workers helps the Irish economy which in turn helps to fund services. 
    - Apple's profits in Ireland are taxed at the rate of 12.5% in an agreement with the Irish government. Besides being legal, 12.5% is not 0%.
    The tax money from Apple in Ireland helps the Irish economy and therefore services in Ireland.
    - Apple pays lots of taxes around the world. Probably more taxes than any other company. All of that money helps to fund services.  

    5. Finally, the money that Apple is holding outside of the US has to do with US taxes. Apple wants a lower US tax rate before paying US taxes on that money. This money from the view of the US and Apple, is not about taxes that should go to the EU. 

    Apple uses shell companies that are businesses in name only, with no more than a business address — as arranged by Appleby, in common with its other clients. Apple has tangible operations all over the world, that's not in dispute. I'm disputing the bouncing of profits between shell companies and the offsetting of these profits against unsubstantiated 'fees' which are not open to scrutiny — I don't believe that is honest or in the spirit of the law, a theme that Tim Cook chose to draw particular attention to.
    gatorguy
  • Reply 52 of 82
    bb-15bb-15 Posts: 245member
    abriden said:
    These so-called tax avoidance schemes are NOT necessarily legal…
    Tax avoidance is legal. Tax evasion is not.

    I know the difference, which is why I say 'so-called' — many schemes have claimed to be legal tax avoidance, but the release of the Paradise Papers demonstrates that at least some constitute illegal tax evasion. It remains to be seen which category Apple's arrangements fall when they are properly scrutinised.
    I can't find evidence that Apple did something illegal from the information about the Paradise Papers. 

    "Paradise Papers show massive but not illegal tax avoidance by Apple... 

    Though Apple has done nothing illegal,
    "
    http://www.domain-b.com/companies/companies_a/Apple/20171107_illegal_tax.html

    * This has been a problem with several of your arguments.
    - Obviously, you have an emotional dislike of what Apple is doing.
    - But your gut feelings do not = facts.
    - And the facts that I can find so far are, that with this tax matter, Apple has not done anything illegal.   
    edited November 2017 farmboyradarthekat
  • Reply 53 of 82
    bb-15 said:
    abriden said:
    These so-called tax avoidance schemes are NOT necessarily legal…
    Tax avoidance is legal. Tax evasion is not.

    I know the difference, which is why I say 'so-called' — many schemes have claimed to be legal tax avoidance, but the release of the Paradise Papers demonstrates that at least some constitute illegal tax evasion. It remains to be seen which category Apple's arrangements fall when they are properly scrutinised.
    I can't find evidence that Apple did something illegal from the information about the Paradise Papers. 

    "Paradise Papers show massive but not illegal tax avoidance by Apple... 

    Though Apple has done nothing illegal,
    "
    http://www.domain-b.com/companies/companies_a/Apple/20171107_illegal_tax.html

    * This has been a problem with several of your arguments.
    - Obviously, you have an emotional dislike of what Apple is doing.
    - But your gut feelings do not = facts.
    - And the facts that I can find so far are, that with this tax matter, Apple has not done anything illegal.   
    I don't have the affiliation or the resources to scrutinise the Paradise Papers to the level required to be conclusive, and I very much doubt that you do either. So this is a conversation not a conclusion. Time will tell. Going back to my original post though, the practices being discussed are immoral.
  • Reply 54 of 82
    Blunt said:
    Apple, Google and other compagnies need to step up. In the Netherlands for example Google made a construction which allowed them to pay millions of dollars less with no benifit for our country at all. Apple is using similar methods which is a shame.
    So businesses should push bribery money in order to do business in foreign territories? 
  • Reply 55 of 82
    bb-15bb-15 Posts: 245member
    abriden said:

    bb-15 said:
    abriden said:
    To those who have so far defended Apple's tax avoidance and blame the laws rather than those abusing them, it is by no means certain that Apple have operated legally at all — by all accounts the arrangement with the Irish government was illegal and the subject of an EU investigation. Secrecy is the reason these tax avoidance schemes have thus far been allowed to happen unchallenged, but hopefully the so-called Paradise Papers will prompt reforms (though I won't hold my breath).

    There is a reason why private and public companies have to publish their accounts for transparency — hiding the money in countries with greater secrecy does not make it legal.
    You are misinformed. 
    1. The tax situation in Ireland was not secret. It is based on the double Irish arrangement which has been in effect since the late 1980s.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_Irish_arrangement

    2. The tax arrangement between Ireland and Apple was legal in Ireland. Why? Because Ireland is a sovereign nation which can pass its own laws which are enforced by its government.
    - And again this arrangement has been known for decades.

    3. The EU does not strip the Irish government of all its power. Ireland is appealing the actions of the EU in this situation.
    Ireland believes that the tax situation with Apple is appropriate.

    4. You imply that Apple does nothing to contribute to the funding of services in Ireland. That is false.
    - Apple employs 4,000 workers in Cork (6,000 total in the country). The income of those workers helps the Irish economy which in turn helps to fund services. 
    - Apple's profits in Ireland are taxed at the rate of 12.5% in an agreement with the Irish government. Besides being legal, 12.5% is not 0%.
    The tax money from Apple in Ireland helps the Irish economy and therefore services in Ireland.
    - Apple pays lots of taxes around the world. Probably more taxes than any other company. All of that money helps to fund services.  

    5. Finally, the money that Apple is holding outside of the US has to do with US taxes. Apple wants a lower US tax rate before paying US taxes on that money. This money from the view of the US and Apple, is not about taxes that should go to the EU. 

    Apple uses shell companies that are businesses in name only, with no more than a business address — as arranged by Appleby, in common with its other clients. Apple has tangible operations all over the world, that's not in dispute. I'm disputing the bouncing of profits between shell companies and the offsetting of these profits against unsubstantiated 'fees' which are not open to scrutiny — I don't believe that is honest or in the spirit of the law, a theme that Tim Cook chose to draw particular attention to.
    This is more of the same with your arguments. On a gut level you dislike Apple and then make unfounded accusations. 
    - "Apple uses shell companies"
    Shell companies are not necessarily illegal and in fact can be a legitimate way for a multinational to do business. 
    You wrote; "the spirit of the law". The law is that shell corporations can be legal.
    And by being legal, shell corporations can fit within the intent of the law.  

    "Shell corporations are legitimate, legal entities that do not possess actual assets or run business operations. They function as transactional vehicles for a variety of firms and for a myriad of purposes. Generally, they are used to obtain financing, maintain control over a conglomerate company, allow firms more favorable tax treatment,"

    https://www.investopedia.com/financial-edge/0712/a-look-behind-shell-corporations.aspx

    - You wrote; "I don't believe that is honest".
    What do you know about this topic in legal terms which can determine what is honest? I know you are angry about this but I don't see much else in terms of knowledge of the specifics.  
    So, in a discussion about honesty, you aren't upfront about the very drastic limits to what you know about this. 

    * Just an FYI, legal tax havens have existed in Europe for decades. For instance residents of Monaco don't pay income tax. 
    Many celebrities have taken advantage of that. 

    http://www.howtoadvice.com/MonacoTaxHaven

    edited November 2017 radarthekat
  • Reply 56 of 82
    farmboyfarmboy Posts: 152member
    abriden said:
    Your moral obligation is to play by the rules ...in this case, taxation. There is no proof at this stage that Apple has been operating legally, and in fact, it's obvious that in the case of their Irish arrangement they were not operating within EU law. Using secrecy and bogus companies to bounce profits around the world, citing fees for which there are no related man hours or infrastructure, etc and doing so secretly, offshore so as to circumvent the transparency that is provided by publishing ones accounts for scrutiny which is required domestic law, is entirely dishonest. It certainly is not in the 'spirit of the law' as claimed by Tim Cook. If Apple markets itself as upholding the highest values (and it does) then it has to do better.

    The fact is big-businesses and the banks own politics, nowhere more than America, so the answer isn't simply to blame the law-makers. Two wrongs don't make a right — yes the law needs changing, but those that avoid and evade tax have massive influence. Somewhere, someone is getting paid to facilitate these arrangements and influence legislature, which means that someone (Apple and others) are paying them. That's immoral.
    Ah. Contrary to your assertions, as others have referenced for you, there is no evidence presented that Apple is doing anything illegal or immoral--they are playing by the rules. You pay what you have to pay, based on your income less all the deductions you are entitled to take. Not a penny more is due or expected. Your issue seems to be that you just don't like the rules as they stand. 
  • Reply 57 of 82
    bb-15bb-15 Posts: 245member
    abriden said:
    bb-15 said:
    abriden said:
    These so-called tax avoidance schemes are NOT necessarily legal…
    Tax avoidance is legal. Tax evasion is not.

    I know the difference, which is why I say 'so-called' — many schemes have claimed to be legal tax avoidance, but the release of the Paradise Papers demonstrates that at least some constitute illegal tax evasion. It remains to be seen which category Apple's arrangements fall when they are properly scrutinised.
    I can't find evidence that Apple did something illegal from the information about the Paradise Papers. 

    "Paradise Papers show massive but not illegal tax avoidance by Apple... 

    Though Apple has done nothing illegal,
    "
    http://www.domain-b.com/companies/companies_a/Apple/20171107_illegal_tax.html

    * This has been a problem with several of your arguments.
    - Obviously, you have an emotional dislike of what Apple is doing.
    - But your gut feelings do not = facts.
    - And the facts that I can find so far are, that with this tax matter, Apple has not done anything illegal.   
    I don't have the affiliation or the resources to scrutinise the Paradise Papers to the level required to be conclusive, and I very much doubt that you do either. So this is a conversation not a conclusion. Time will tell. Going back to my original post though, the practices being discussed are immoral.
    You only associate Apple with these (according to you) "immoral" practices.
    Let's say that tax laws need to be reformed. Calling out Apple alone as being "immoral" about taxes is not going to bring about fundamental change.
    Why? Because the issue of companies keeping money overseas is not just an Apple issue. It is a widespread corporation / tax law issue.
    - Here is a New York Times article which takes imo the proper broader view rather than going on an Apple hate fest.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/06/world/apple-taxes-jersey.html

    * After all, if a person doesn't use Apple products for any personal computing, they will use tech from companies which also keep billions overseas including; 
    - Microsoft $146 billion, Google $78 billion, IBM $71 billion, Intel $46 billion, HP Enterprise $41 billion and plain HP another $41 billion.
    (From the New York Times article.) Put that together and it is a lot more than what Apple is holding. 
    * People who only focus their anger on Apple (about widespread issues) in the end don't change the system.      
    - But to look at the bigger picture requires not having double standards and that's hard imo for those who seem to only be motivated by anti-Apple outrage. 
    edited November 2017 radarthekat
  • Reply 58 of 82
    bb-15 said:
    abriden said:
    bb-15 said:
    abriden said:
    These so-called tax avoidance schemes are NOT necessarily legal…
    Tax avoidance is legal. Tax evasion is not.

    I know the difference, which is why I say 'so-called' — many schemes have claimed to be legal tax avoidance, but the release of the Paradise Papers demonstrates that at least some constitute illegal tax evasion. It remains to be seen which category Apple's arrangements fall when they are properly scrutinised.
    I can't find evidence that Apple did something illegal from the information about the Paradise Papers. 

    "Paradise Papers show massive but not illegal tax avoidance by Apple... 

    Though Apple has done nothing illegal,
    "
    http://www.domain-b.com/companies/companies_a/Apple/20171107_illegal_tax.html

    * This has been a problem with several of your arguments.
    - Obviously, you have an emotional dislike of what Apple is doing.
    - But your gut feelings do not = facts.
    - And the facts that I can find so far are, that with this tax matter, Apple has not done anything illegal.   
    I don't have the affiliation or the resources to scrutinise the Paradise Papers to the level required to be conclusive, and I very much doubt that you do either. So this is a conversation not a conclusion. Time will tell. Going back to my original post though, the practices being discussed are immoral.
    You only associate Apple with these (according to you) "immoral" practices.
    Let's say that tax laws need to be reformed. Calling out Apple alone as being "immoral" about taxes is not going to bring about fundamental change.
    Why? Because the issue of companies keeping money overseas is not just an Apple issue. It is a widespread corporation / tax law issue.
    - Here is a New York Times article which takes imo the proper broader view rather than going on an Apple hate fest.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/06/world/apple-taxes-jersey.html

    * After all, if a person doesn't use Apple products for any personal computing, they will use tech from companies which also keep billions overseas including; 
    - Microsoft $146 billion, Google $78 billion, IBM $71 billion, Intel $46 billion, HP Enterprise $41 billion and plain HP another $41 billion.
    (From the New York Times article.) Put that together and it is a lot more than what Apple is holding. 
    * People who only focus their anger on Apple (about widespread issues) in the end don't change the system.      
    - But to look at the bigger picture requires not having double standards and that's hard imo for those who seem to only be motivated by anti-Apple outrage. 
    Blah blah blah. I didn't call out Apple alone, this is an article about Apple. I didn't claim shell companies were illegal. I'm not claiming to be an arbiter of moral justice, I just believe that for most people these practices are recognised as unethical if not illegal. I'm sorry that you're such an apologist.
  • Reply 59 of 82
    nhtnht Posts: 4,386member
    abriden said:
    bb-15 said:
    abriden said:
    These so-called tax avoidance schemes are NOT necessarily legal…
    Tax avoidance is legal. Tax evasion is not.

    I know the difference, which is why I say 'so-called' — many schemes have claimed to be legal tax avoidance, but the release of the Paradise Papers demonstrates that at least some constitute illegal tax evasion. It remains to be seen which category Apple's arrangements fall when they are properly scrutinised.
    I can't find evidence that Apple did something illegal from the information about the Paradise Papers. 

    "Paradise Papers show massive but not illegal tax avoidance by Apple... 

    Though Apple has done nothing illegal,
    "
    http://www.domain-b.com/companies/companies_a/Apple/20171107_illegal_tax.html

    * This has been a problem with several of your arguments.
    - Obviously, you have an emotional dislike of what Apple is doing.
    - But your gut feelings do not = facts.
    - And the facts that I can find so far are, that with this tax matter, Apple has not done anything illegal.   
    I don't have the affiliation or the resources to scrutinise the Paradise Papers to the level required to be conclusive, and I very much doubt that you do either. So this is a conversation not a conclusion. Time will tell. Going back to my original post though, the practices being discussed are immoral.
    Nope.  You're just a troll because facts don't matter to you.
    radarthekat
  • Reply 60 of 82
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 3,308member
    bb-15 said:
    abriden said:
    To those who have so far defended Apple's tax avoidance and blame the laws rather than those abusing them, it is by no means certain that Apple have operated legally at all — by all accounts the arrangement with the Irish government was illegal and the subject of an EU investigation. Secrecy is the reason these tax avoidance schemes have thus far been allowed to happen unchallenged, but hopefully the so-called Paradise Papers will prompt reforms (though I won't hold my breath).

    There is a reason why private and public companies have to publish their accounts for transparency — hiding the money in countries with greater secrecy does not make it legal.
    You are misinformed. 
    1. The tax situation in Ireland was not secret. It is based on the double Irish arrangement which has been in effect since the late 1980s.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_Irish_arrangement

    2. The tax arrangement between Ireland and Apple was legal in Ireland. Why? Because Ireland is a sovereign nation which can pass its own laws which are enforced by its government.
    - And again this arrangement has been known for decades.

    3. The EU does not strip the Irish government of all its power. Ireland is appealing the actions of the EU in this situation.
    Ireland believes that the tax situation with Apple is appropriate.

    4. You imply that Apple does nothing to contribute to the funding of services in Ireland. That is false.
    - Apple employs 4,000 workers in Cork (6,000 total in the country). The income of those workers helps the Irish economy which in turn helps to fund services. 
    - Apple's profits in Ireland are taxed at the rate of 12.5% in an agreement with the Irish government. Besides being legal, 12.5% is not 0%.
    The tax money from Apple in Ireland helps the Irish economy and therefore services in Ireland.
    - Apple pays lots of taxes around the world. Probably more taxes than any other company. All of that money helps to fund services.  

    5. Finally, the money that Apple is holding outside of the US has to do with US taxes. Apple wants a lower US tax rate before paying US taxes on that money. This money from the view of the US and Apple, is not about taxes that should go to the EU. 

    One of the bigger complaints thrown at Apple, and one Tim Cook has never answered, is that their setup in Ireland allowed them to effectively decide how much to make available for taxation.

    That would be to say that Apple paid 12.5% in taxes on what it decided to make available, which, in the investigation of the EU, was seemingly a very small amount.
    gatorguy
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