France approves digital tax measures against Apple despite US pressure

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  • Reply 101 of 186
    nhtnht Posts: 4,496member
    Abalos65 said:
    cat52 said:
    For those who think Europe has a well funded military, this article may catch you by surprise:

    A German battalion assigned to Nato's rapid response force used broomstick handles instead of guns on a joint exercise due to chronic equipment shortages:
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/germany/11420627/German-army-used-broomsticks-instead-of-guns-during-training.html


    So please spare us the talk of how Europe can defend itself.
    Do you think that such an article is a solid argument that all the armies of the WHOLE of Europe cannot defend themselves? This kind of article is just clickbait for people to confirm their biases or preconceived ideas. 

    So please spare us the talk of how this is evidence of anything. (Condescending, isn't it?)
    Germany had very low operational readiness and the strongest economy.  Only the UK and France have decent operational readiness.

    When the EU deploys, excepting the UK and France, it’s in terms of hundreds of troops.  It’s not just the lack of pointy end of the spear but also logistics and support.
    cat52Carnage
  • Reply 102 of 186
    nhtnht Posts: 4,496member

    avon b7 said:
    nht said:
    avon b7 said:

    Did you read the post I was replying to?

    Here it is (my bold):

    "...ONLY reason the EU has the social programs it has is because the EU members have NO military budgets to speak of. Instead the EU relies on the United States to protect it from the Russian Bear, the Middle East Islamic radicals. If the U.S. pulled out militarily from the EU and NATO those countries would have no choice but to dramatically increase their military budgets and those social programs would suffer big time. For over 70 years now the U.S. has spent its treasure to keep the peace in Europe."

    Unless otherwise stated in my post, EU and Europe are interchangeable. That should be crystal clear to a person who lives in a place called "North America" and which provides for the same contextualisations.

    Europe means EU!

    Now, the 'otherwise stated' was duly and clearly pointed out with reference to Yugoslavia.

    Surprising you managed to fudge things up.

    You seem trapped in an old school thinking of 'tanks and battalions'. The world has moved on. The Russians will not invade Europe (let me clarify that for you: EU). Even if it had NO defence capacity!

    Why? Because strategically the U.S would not allow it. It would be to much to lose so the whole thing becomes moot. That is the reality. 

    However, Europe (yes, EU again) is planning for a unified defence platform but for reasons of strategic goals too. Just like the U.S (and Russia and China). It will happen. The last relevant EU meeting on this was last month (.pdf https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/39786/st10048-en19.pdf)

    Ukraine is strategic to the EU as the EU is to Ukraine. 

    A Ukraine falling under the umbrella of the EU would automatically provide it with protection from Russia. No military hardware required.

    Russia will huff and puff just like Trump huffs and puffs but the EU will chart its own military course but in line with its own objectives, not those who try to impose their own requirements from the outside.
    That's utter bullshit.  If the EU was defenseless, which because of the US, UK, Poland and France it isn't, the Russians would take back all Warsaw Pact nations.  And if it wanted Germany the Germans couldn't stop them without our help.

    And the entire point is that the EU has been freeloading on the US for defense because of the assumption that "strategically" we wouldn't allow it.  That YOU believe that the world has moved on from tanks and battalions is only because you live in a country completely sheltered by the tanks and battalions of the US. 

    You ungrateful jerk.  My kid will serve so your kids can have socialized medicine without having to pay for an army that can stand up to a country that has already invaded Europe. 

    And no...the EU will no longer mean Europe.  Not after Brexit. And your "unified defense platform" won't be anything worth spit in a real war without the UK.
    There you go again with that old school thinking. That 'best military in the world' drum banging, which by chance was the same one that rang out during the Yugoslavian conflict.

    I will repeat myself. If the EU was a hive if free loading but pacific hippies with no defence but for words, Russia (I'm surprised you don't call them 'commies') would not do anything on a military level because the U.S simply wouldn't stand back and let them swallow up the whole thing. Not for any love of the EU or its people of course but for purely strategic reasons.

    Of course, that isn't the reality we live in and in 2016 the EU (as a collective) was second only to the U.S on defence spending (over 200 billion euros). Let that sink in for a while.

    The goal now (and it is part of the summary I linked to) is to get (and to quote a U.S styling) 'more bang for buck'!

    That is through better coordination, more procurement at EU levels (as opposed to national levels) and higher levels of military and civilian crossover.

    If you read the summary, you will have noted that one of the major pillars of defence wasn't even around when your old school thinking was at its height. Cyberwarfare.

    As for being ungrateful, what are you blathering on about now? That's irrevelant but possibly a sign of how you view most EU citizens.

    Peace and stability within Europe
    (the EU) has been mostly down to its own interweaving, not Uncle Sam! And it isn't easy to get over 20 member states to move in the same direction so it has been quite a task to pull off. 

    It isn't paradise, it isn't perfect but the vast majority of people living here are pro EU and if the UK gets a second referendum I expect remain to win.
    While I agree with you,  I think, with regard to Russia, you are both missing the reason why they would not attack Europe:  Russia is now run by a bunch of capitalistic oligarch's (led by Putin) who are more interested in personal wealth than nationalistic expansion.    They are more likely to use tactics like they used in Britain to insure the Brexit vote went their way and here in 2016 to insure that our election went their way than to send tanks and planes.   They didn't even officially send their military into Ukraine -- it was all covert stuff and "volunteers".   They have a military and will use it when they need it (like in Syria), but otherwise they are just your typical Russian Oligarch/mobsters....

    Bascally, they'll attack a country using social media to get what they want instead of spending billions on tanks, guns and bombs...   It's cheaper and more effective.
    The folks in Donbas and Syria were Russian troops masquerading as “contractors”.  Contractors don’t get access to top if the line air defense vehicles and tanks.  The Russian invasion of Georgia was done by front line troops...poorly...but the forces that went into the Ukraine was a lot better trained and organized.

    You are such a genius.
    cat52
  • Reply 103 of 186
    nhtnht Posts: 4,496member
    avon b7 said:
    nht said:
    avon b7 said:

    Did you read the post I was replying to?

    Here it is (my bold):

    "...ONLY reason the EU has the social programs it has is because the EU members have NO military budgets to speak of. Instead the EU relies on the United States to protect it from the Russian Bear, the Middle East Islamic radicals. If the U.S. pulled out militarily from the EU and NATO those countries would have no choice but to dramatically increase their military budgets and those social programs would suffer big time. For over 70 years now the U.S. has spent its treasure to keep the peace in Europe."

    Unless otherwise stated in my post, EU and Europe are interchangeable. That should be crystal clear to a person who lives in a place called "North America" and which provides for the same contextualisations.

    Europe means EU!

    Now, the 'otherwise stated' was duly and clearly pointed out with reference to Yugoslavia.

    Surprising you managed to fudge things up.

    You seem trapped in an old school thinking of 'tanks and battalions'. The world has moved on. The Russians will not invade Europe (let me clarify that for you: EU). Even if it had NO defence capacity!

    Why? Because strategically the U.S would not allow it. It would be to much to lose so the whole thing becomes moot. That is the reality. 

    However, Europe (yes, EU again) is planning for a unified defence platform but for reasons of strategic goals too. Just like the U.S (and Russia and China). It will happen. The last relevant EU meeting on this was last month (.pdf https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/39786/st10048-en19.pdf)

    Ukraine is strategic to the EU as the EU is to Ukraine. 

    A Ukraine falling under the umbrella of the EU would automatically provide it with protection from Russia. No military hardware required.

    Russia will huff and puff just like Trump huffs and puffs but the EU will chart its own military course but in line with its own objectives, not those who try to impose their own requirements from the outside.
    That's utter bullshit.  If the EU was defenseless, which because of the US, UK, Poland and France it isn't, the Russians would take back all Warsaw Pact nations.  And if it wanted Germany the Germans couldn't stop them without our help.

    And the entire point is that the EU has been freeloading on the US for defense because of the assumption that "strategically" we wouldn't allow it.  That YOU believe that the world has moved on from tanks and battalions is only because you live in a country completely sheltered by the tanks and battalions of the US. 

    You ungrateful jerk.  My kid will serve so your kids can have socialized medicine without having to pay for an army that can stand up to a country that has already invaded Europe. 

    And no...the EU will no longer mean Europe.  Not after Brexit. And your "unified defense platform" won't be anything worth spit in a real war without the UK.
    There you go again with that old school thinking. That 'best military in the world' drum banging, which by chance was the same one that rang out during the Yugoslavian conflict.

    I will repeat myself. If the EU was a hive if free loading but pacific hippies with no defence but for words, Russia (I'm surprised you don't call them 'commies') would not do anything on a military level because the U.S simply wouldn't stand back and let them swallow up the whole thing. Not for any love of the EU or its people of course but for purely strategic reasons.

    Of course, that isn't the reality we live in and in 2016 the EU (as a collective) was second only to the U.S on defence spending (over 200 billion euros). Let that sink in for a while.

    The goal now (and it is part of the summary I linked to) is to get (and to quote a U.S styling) 'more bang for buck'!

    That is through better coordination, more procurement at EU levels (as opposed to national levels) and higher levels of military and civilian crossover.

    If you read the summary, you will have noted that one of the major pillars of defence wasn't even around when your old school thinking was at its height. Cyberwarfare.

    As for being ungrateful, what are you blathering on about now? That's irrevelant but possibly a sign of how you view most EU citizens.

    Peace and stability within Europe
    (the EU) has been mostly down to its own interweaving, not Uncle Sam! And it isn't easy to get over 20 member states to move in the same direction so it has been quite a task to pull off. 

    It isn't paradise, it isn't perfect but the vast majority of people living here are pro EU and if the UK gets a second referendum I expect remain to win.
    You are a super genius.

    First, the PRC outspends the entirety of the EU so you aren’t #2. Second, the EU pads defense spending with things that NATO typically doesn’t count and finally the 2% number, which you guys don’t even reach, doesn’t mean that’s enough for an actual fighting force especially piecemealed all over Europe.  What it does mean is a bunch of paper armies that are ill equipped, poorly trained and not operational.  Hence Germans with broomsticks and hanger queens for fighter aircraft.

    Cyberwarfare is something you know nothing about and has existed since the middle of the Cold War.  As soon as we had computers and networks we had cyber war.
    cat52
  • Reply 104 of 186
    crowley said:
    1. Apple get criticised
    2. Wah!  Stop criticing Apple and change the laws!
    3. Laws get changed
    4. Wah!  How dare you change the laws, this is discriminatory against Apple!

    So tiresome, you lot.


    So why the fuck are you even here, posting and reading, if it is tiresome?

    cat52
  • Reply 105 of 186
    Abalos65Abalos65 Posts: 54member
    cat52 said:
    Abalos65 said:
    cat52 said:
    Abalos65 said:
    cat52 said:
    For those who think Europe has a well funded military, this article may catch you by surprise:

    A German battalion assigned to Nato's rapid response force used broomstick handles instead of guns on a joint exercise due to chronic equipment shortages:
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/germany/11420627/German-army-used-broomsticks-instead-of-guns-during-training.html


    So please spare us the talk of how Europe can defend itself.
    Do you think that such an article is a solid argument that all the armies of the WHOLE of Europe cannot defend themselves? This kind of article is just clickbait for people to confirm their biases or preconceived ideas. 

    So please spare us the talk of how this is evidence of anything. (Condescending, isn't it?)
    @Abalos65 - It's interesting when you come across an article which doesn't confirm your own bias, you are rather quick to dismiss it as "clickbait".  I guess that makes things easy...

    For many people though, when they hear the German army is so poorly funded it cannot even conduct a military exercise without having to resort to using broomsticks, it's rather eye opening.

    And given that Germany has the strongest economy in Europe, if even German soldiers don't have the funds to use real guns in NATO military exercises, then I'm not sure what other country you think is magically going to rush to Europe's defense if such a need arises.  The Flemish, perhaps?
    Just repeating the article again doesn't make it anymore convincing. You're still saying that because one time the German army had to use broomsticks Europe is not able to defend itself. I still call that a crappy argument. And this all the while I do think that armies in Europe should have larger budgets to comply with the 2% GDP agreement. Also, thank you for assuming my stance on the topic and pointing the finger back is also not childish at all.
    On an internet forum I'm not going to take an hour to write a post.  Internet forums are meant for quick little snippets of info.

    But if you must know, a friend of mine is a former member of the Swedish Special Protection Group, which is similar to the US's Rangers.

    Him and I have had long conversations about Europe's military preparedness, and in his opinion, both Sweden as well as Europe as a whole have cut their military budgets to such a point where they're basically a joke.

    And the article I posted about the German army having to use broomsticks in a NATO military exercise, is a prime example of just what a joke the European military now is.


    You are free to think such an article is "clickbait", and you are free to think the Europeans are capable of defending themselves from a conventional Russian military attack.  But people who are much closer to the European military scene than I presume you are, tend to differ.

    "A friend of my said" -some random forum person
    The arguments keep getting more and more convincing.

    The article you linked was not for just for 'quick info'. It was used for a cheap shot at Europe's different armies to make the point that it cannot defend itself, as you assert again in this response. I can just as easily link a Youtube video of US Army fails and make the same crappy/incorrect argument. You can say that it is just an internet forum, so I should lower myself to that kind of discourse. I won't.
    edited July 15
  • Reply 106 of 186
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 4,198member
    nht said:
    avon b7 said:
    nht said:
    avon b7 said:

    Did you read the post I was replying to?

    Here it is (my bold):

    "...ONLY reason the EU has the social programs it has is because the EU members have NO military budgets to speak of. Instead the EU relies on the United States to protect it from the Russian Bear, the Middle East Islamic radicals. If the U.S. pulled out militarily from the EU and NATO those countries would have no choice but to dramatically increase their military budgets and those social programs would suffer big time. For over 70 years now the U.S. has spent its treasure to keep the peace in Europe."

    Unless otherwise stated in my post, EU and Europe are interchangeable. That should be crystal clear to a person who lives in a place called "North America" and which provides for the same contextualisations.

    Europe means EU!

    Now, the 'otherwise stated' was duly and clearly pointed out with reference to Yugoslavia.

    Surprising you managed to fudge things up.

    You seem trapped in an old school thinking of 'tanks and battalions'. The world has moved on. The Russians will not invade Europe (let me clarify that for you: EU). Even if it had NO defence capacity!

    Why? Because strategically the U.S would not allow it. It would be to much to lose so the whole thing becomes moot. That is the reality. 

    However, Europe (yes, EU again) is planning for a unified defence platform but for reasons of strategic goals too. Just like the U.S (and Russia and China). It will happen. The last relevant EU meeting on this was last month (.pdf https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/39786/st10048-en19.pdf)

    Ukraine is strategic to the EU as the EU is to Ukraine. 

    A Ukraine falling under the umbrella of the EU would automatically provide it with protection from Russia. No military hardware required.

    Russia will huff and puff just like Trump huffs and puffs but the EU will chart its own military course but in line with its own objectives, not those who try to impose their own requirements from the outside.
    That's utter bullshit.  If the EU was defenseless, which because of the US, UK, Poland and France it isn't, the Russians would take back all Warsaw Pact nations.  And if it wanted Germany the Germans couldn't stop them without our help.

    And the entire point is that the EU has been freeloading on the US for defense because of the assumption that "strategically" we wouldn't allow it.  That YOU believe that the world has moved on from tanks and battalions is only because you live in a country completely sheltered by the tanks and battalions of the US. 

    You ungrateful jerk.  My kid will serve so your kids can have socialized medicine without having to pay for an army that can stand up to a country that has already invaded Europe. 

    And no...the EU will no longer mean Europe.  Not after Brexit. And your "unified defense platform" won't be anything worth spit in a real war without the UK.
    There you go again with that old school thinking. That 'best military in the world' drum banging, which by chance was the same one that rang out during the Yugoslavian conflict.

    I will repeat myself. If the EU was a hive if free loading but pacific hippies with no defence but for words, Russia (I'm surprised you don't call them 'commies') would not do anything on a military level because the U.S simply wouldn't stand back and let them swallow up the whole thing. Not for any love of the EU or its people of course but for purely strategic reasons.

    Of course, that isn't the reality we live in and in 2016 the EU (as a collective) was second only to the U.S on defence spending (over 200 billion euros). Let that sink in for a while.

    The goal now (and it is part of the summary I linked to) is to get (and to quote a U.S styling) 'more bang for buck'!

    That is through better coordination, more procurement at EU levels (as opposed to national levels) and higher levels of military and civilian crossover.

    If you read the summary, you will have noted that one of the major pillars of defence wasn't even around when your old school thinking was at its height. Cyberwarfare.

    As for being ungrateful, what are you blathering on about now? That's irrevelant but possibly a sign of how you view most EU citizens.

    Peace and stability within Europe
    (the EU) has been mostly down to its own interweaving, not Uncle Sam! And it isn't easy to get over 20 member states to move in the same direction so it has been quite a task to pull off. 

    It isn't paradise, it isn't perfect but the vast majority of people living here are pro EU and if the UK gets a second referendum I expect remain to win.
    You are a super genius.

    First, the PRC outspends the entirety of the EU so you aren’t #2. Second, the EU pads defense spending with things that NATO typically doesn’t count and finally the 2% number, which you guys don’t even reach, doesn’t mean that’s enough for an actual fighting force especially piecemealed all over Europe.  What it does mean is a bunch of paper armies that are ill equipped, poorly trained and not operational.  Hence Germans with broomsticks and hanger queens for fighter aircraft.

    Cyberwarfare is something you know nothing about and has existed since the middle of the Cold War.  As soon as we had computers and networks we had cyber war.

    http://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegData/etudes/BRIE/2016/593791/EPRS_BRI(2016)593791_EN.pdf

    "In 2015, the EU Member States collectively spent €203 billion on defence.4 Together they are thus the world's second largest military spender after the USA"

    You don't know what I know about cyberwarfare and in the middle of the Cold War (where your mindset seems to be entrenched) it wasn't one of the pillars of defence strategy as it is today. That was my point.

    As for German broomsticks. Read up and post back when you understand what was actually claimed and reported.


    edited July 15
  • Reply 107 of 186
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,323member
    iCave said:
    roake said:
    pjs_socal said:
    I am surprised that it took EU countries this long to enact these kinds of taxes. It’s common knowledge that Apple (with help from Ireland) took advantage of loopholes in international tax laws to reduce their tax burden. Of course, Apple has done nothing illegal, but it’s completely within each country’s rights to change tax laws to close those loopholes.
    So imagine if every UN country charged Apple an additional 3% on gross revenue.
    3% tax is on gross revenue generated in that country (from digital services in this case), which seems perfectly reasonable.

    This is a good interim measure at least until the whole of EU passes a common tax law. At some point, corporations need to realize that pitting one country against another to get favourable tax treatment (looking at you Ireland and Luxembourg) can only take you so far.

    I love Apple (the company) to pieces but when it comes to taxation, it appears to use tax loopholes like any other corporation does.
    3% of revenue sounds small but it might be 25% of profits. 

    Theres already a sales tax for digital goods in the EU, its called VAT and it is pretty significant. 20% or so.

    https://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/individuals/buying-goods-services-online-personal-use/buying-services/electronically-supplied-services_en

    The problem is that VAT is supposedly directly a tax on the consumer, so even if digital sales tax (VAT) cost the consumers of Apple products a few billion a year and gains the French tax authorities a few billion a year,  it isn't taken from Apple's profits, which are declared in the US and Ireland.  Thats standard for corporation tax. 

    What France is claiming here is tax that would otherwise be due where the IP os made or owned, the US or Ireland.  This is a pretty unique tax and goes against most of the post war agreements on tax. It is reducing the tax take of producing countries, and letting them be garnished by the consuming countries. I bet China will also be annoyed by this.
    edited July 15
  • Reply 108 of 186
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 5,138member
    avon b7 said:
    roake said:
    pjs_socal said:
    I am surprised that it took EU countries this long to enact these kinds of taxes. It’s common knowledge that Apple (with help from Ireland) took advantage of loopholes in international tax laws to reduce their tax burden. Of course, Apple has done nothing illegal, but it’s completely within each country’s rights to change tax laws to close those loopholes.
    So imagine if every UN country charged Apple an additional 3% on gross revenue.
    Where would the problem be? It's a decision each sovereign state must weigh up. And in this case it isn't 'Apple', it's companies that go above a specific limit.
    Taxing revenues is unheard of. And stupid. Only pre-tax profits are typically taxed. 

    If a company like Walmart or GM were taxed at 3% of revenues, they’d have no profits left. This ill-advised EU move opens up a completely new front in a likely serious trade war. 

    I predict they’ll have to back off. 
    Huh?   You don't pay sales tax?   Do you live in a cave somewhere?
    Groan... for the THIRD time now...

    Read the friggin’ thread, man. 
      Idid....   I'm asking where's that cave you live in where you don't need to pay sales tax?
    The only cure for not understanding the difference between a corporate tax and a sales tax is.... I am afraid... a basic education. I honestly don’t know what else to say!
     I know the difference between a corporate income tax and a sales tax (f that's what you meant).
    But you still haven't answered the question that  I and others have asked:   What cave do you live in where you don't pay a tax on sales?
  • Reply 109 of 186
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 5,138member
    crowley said:
    avon b7 said:
    roake said:
    pjs_socal said:
    I am surprised that it took EU countries this long to enact these kinds of taxes. It’s common knowledge that Apple (with help from Ireland) took advantage of loopholes in international tax laws to reduce their tax burden. Of course, Apple has done nothing illegal, but it’s completely within each country’s rights to change tax laws to close those loopholes.
    So imagine if every UN country charged Apple an additional 3% on gross revenue.
    Where would the problem be? It's a decision each sovereign state must weigh up. And in this case it isn't 'Apple', it's companies that go above a specific limit.
    Taxing revenues is unheard of. And stupid. Only pre-tax profits are typically taxed. 

    If a company like Walmart or GM were taxed at 3% of revenues, they’d have no profits left. This ill-advised EU move opens up a completely new front in a likely serious trade war. 

    I predict they’ll have to back off. 
    Huh?   You don't pay sales tax?   Do you live in a cave somewhere?
    Groan... for the THIRD time now...

    Read the friggin’ thread, man. 
      Idid....   I'm asking where's that cave you live in where you don't need to pay sales tax?
    I asked him yesterday what he thought the meaningful difference was.  He hasn't answered.  I suspect he doesn't have an answer.
    See my answer above, in Post #96.
    Obfuscaton is not an answer.
  • Reply 110 of 186
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 5,138member
    seanj said:
    avon b7 said:
    seanj said:
    avon b7 said:
    lkrupp said:
    iCave said:
    I'm not sure which country you are from, but looking at high quality health care and affordable education provided in most of the European Union, it bears evidence that high taxes, when used the right way, do pay social dividends.
    Complete baloney. The ONLY reason the EU has the social programs it has is because the EU members have NO military budgets to speak of. Instead the EU relies on the United States to protect it from the Russian Bear, the Middle East Islamic radicals. If the U.S. pulled out militarily from the EU and NATO those countries would have no choice but to dramatically increase their military budgets and those social programs would suffer big time. For over 70 years now the U.S. has spent its treasure to keep the peace in Europe.
    Now that is baloney. The absence of conflict in Europe is precisely because of the EU. 

    As for external threats and U.S 'protection', simply pull out of NATO if it costs too much!

    That won't happen because the U.S wants to keep its military bases in Europe. It wants to continue selling arms. It needs NATO allies. Without them (however 'small' their financial contribution) the Gulf wars would not have been possible and with so much debt, the U.S is rapidly approaching a point where it might have hardware to parade around but no be able to use in actual conflict. Wars are expensive.

    I'll take a balanced welfare state over any of that.


    https://www.businessinsider.com/how-nato-budget-is-funded-2018-7
    You're believing the spin from the Eurocrats I'm afraid, the EU has done NOTHING to prevent conflict in Europe.
    When Yugoslavia split and war broke out, including ethnic cleansing, it wasn't the EU that stopped it, it was NATO with the USA and UK at the forefront.
    As for the current ongoing war in the Ukraine, that's solely due to the EU courting the Ukraine to get them to join as part of their ongoing aggressive expansionist policy. Every observer pointed out that Russia would never allow Ukraine to join, but the EU persisted.
    Meanwhile there is civil unrest across Europe - weekly riots in France for months - and the rise of extremists on both left and right due to the EU's disasterous Euro policy. Economists warned back in the 90's that allowing countries with divergent economies to use a common currency would result in economic collapse, so rules were put in place to stop it. But when Eurocrats realised that Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy and France would fail the test and be excluded from the Euro, they decided to ignore their own rules. As a result they set in train the sovereign debt crisis that erupted in 2009 and is still ongoing. The reason they did this was simple to trap these countries in the EU, leaving after having adopted the Euro would be nearly impossible.

    The USA and Canda should consider a mutual defence pact with a smaller set of countries - the UK and France account for nearly 50% of ALL of europe's military capability. In the long term, the like of Macron in France and the Eurocrats in Brussels want to undermine NATO and rely more on an EU Army. The hilarious thing is they don't want to fund it properly, for example, Germany's armed forces reduced to a token force with most ships, aircraft, and submarines unsable due to repairs being required.

    You are mixing different things up.

    Yugoslavia was not the EU and its problems were rooted in a completely non-EU world.

    Peace and stability is very much one of the pillars of the EU and the vast majority of EU citizens are pro EU (and I'm including UK citizens here).

    There are rules. Greece broke them (it lied) to join the euro. The consequences were hard to swallow but totally necessary. The blame lies - ultimately - with those who took Greece to where they did: its politicians. The world financial crisis also had roots. Do you remember where? The euro crisis was simply made worse by that but is now better prepared for future depressions. Of course, the U.S would have loved to see the euro fail.

    There is no civil unrest in Europe. There were violent protests in a few places in France - and for a clear reason. They were not anti EU protests. This is nothing new for the French. Have you ever seen how they deal with Spanish tomatoes?

    Do you really understand why some elements of the EU would like a unified EU controlled armed forces? It isn't hard to figure out and is nothing new. The EDC dates back to the fifties! At some point an alternative idea will get support and move forward. The U.S will not be happy when that happens.

    Ukraine?

    Ukraine wants to be rid of Russia as a threat. The only way that is going to happen is by joining the EU. We know the people of Ukraine are willing to give their lives to achieve their goals but first they must get their house in order and tackle corruption. The EU has a strategic interest in Ukraine and a pressing need to reduce its dependence on Russian energy. That is already in progress.

    It's not 'euro spin' it's happening and people are supporting it in spite of populist movements peddling nationalistic manifests in most countries.

    And for something weird, defence and EU related:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/14/jet-powered-flyboard-soars-over-paris-for-bastille-day-parade

    It’s not surprising you’re confused if you quote and believe The Guardian newspaper!!!
    Yugoslavia wasn’t it the EU but the EU tried to stop the fighting the genocide by diplomatic means. It was up to NATO to stop it the only way possible, by military action. Afterwards after the fighting the EU was allowed in as a peacekeeping and policing force.

    The EU knew the Greeks lied about their economy to pass the rules. Italy Spain, Portugal and France didn’t even have to lie, the EU just ignored its own rules. And Greece’s problems are nothing compared to what Italy has.
    The Eurozone crisis was an inevitability, a bomb waiting to go off at any time. It just happened to have been the drying up of liquidity in the international markets in 2008 that set it off. You should be thankful, if that hadn’t triggered it and the same issue had gone on for another 10 years then even Germany would hVe been bankrupted by it.

    It may not be covered by the europhile media but there’s been weekly disturbances or riots by the yellow jackets for the last 34 weeks in Paris. And you obviously are ignorant of the rise of the AfD and waves of attacks against immigrants in Germany.

    As for the Ukraine, if it ever does submit a membership application to the EU, Russian tanks will arrive in Kiev before the application arrives in Brussels.

    And God help Europe if the EU thinks it can defend itself military without NATO. Only Poland would slow the Russians before they arrived at the French border. At the start of the year every single German submarine was broken, the majority of their air-force grounded, and their new frigates have to carry concrete ballast because the are top heavy with a 10 degree list to starboard. The German Tornadoes can’t fly at night because the lighting of the control panel interferes with their night vision:- an aircraft the RAF has already retired. And the German Defence Minister responsible for all this? She’s the new unelected EU Commission President!!!!

    BTW that Bastille Day Parade you linked to? Well the yellow jackets took the opportunity for more civil unrest...
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-48983089
    So, you're a war hawk.  You want every nation diverting massive GDP to building tanks, bombs and space fleets, armed to the teeth and ready to fight to the death at the slightest real or imagined provocation.  That's nice.  I think Europe has played that game before.  Twice.
  • Reply 111 of 186
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 4,198member
    seanj said:
    avon b7 said:
    seanj said:
    avon b7 said:
    lkrupp said:
    iCave said:
    I'm not sure which country you are from, but looking at high quality health care and affordable education provided in most of the European Union, it bears evidence that high taxes, when used the right way, do pay social dividends.
    Complete baloney. The ONLY reason the EU has the social programs it has is because the EU members have NO military budgets to speak of. Instead the EU relies on the United States to protect it from the Russian Bear, the Middle East Islamic radicals. If the U.S. pulled out militarily from the EU and NATO those countries would have no choice but to dramatically increase their military budgets and those social programs would suffer big time. For over 70 years now the U.S. has spent its treasure to keep the peace in Europe.
    Now that is baloney. The absence of conflict in Europe is precisely because of the EU. 

    As for external threats and U.S 'protection', simply pull out of NATO if it costs too much!

    That won't happen because the U.S wants to keep its military bases in Europe. It wants to continue selling arms. It needs NATO allies. Without them (however 'small' their financial contribution) the Gulf wars would not have been possible and with so much debt, the U.S is rapidly approaching a point where it might have hardware to parade around but no be able to use in actual conflict. Wars are expensive.

    I'll take a balanced welfare state over any of that.


    https://www.businessinsider.com/how-nato-budget-is-funded-2018-7
    You're believing the spin from the Eurocrats I'm afraid, the EU has done NOTHING to prevent conflict in Europe.
    When Yugoslavia split and war broke out, including ethnic cleansing, it wasn't the EU that stopped it, it was NATO with the USA and UK at the forefront.
    As for the current ongoing war in the Ukraine, that's solely due to the EU courting the Ukraine to get them to join as part of their ongoing aggressive expansionist policy. Every observer pointed out that Russia would never allow Ukraine to join, but the EU persisted.
    Meanwhile there is civil unrest across Europe - weekly riots in France for months - and the rise of extremists on both left and right due to the EU's disasterous Euro policy. Economists warned back in the 90's that allowing countries with divergent economies to use a common currency would result in economic collapse, so rules were put in place to stop it. But when Eurocrats realised that Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy and France would fail the test and be excluded from the Euro, they decided to ignore their own rules. As a result they set in train the sovereign debt crisis that erupted in 2009 and is still ongoing. The reason they did this was simple to trap these countries in the EU, leaving after having adopted the Euro would be nearly impossible.

    The USA and Canda should consider a mutual defence pact with a smaller set of countries - the UK and France account for nearly 50% of ALL of europe's military capability. In the long term, the like of Macron in France and the Eurocrats in Brussels want to undermine NATO and rely more on an EU Army. The hilarious thing is they don't want to fund it properly, for example, Germany's armed forces reduced to a token force with most ships, aircraft, and submarines unsable due to repairs being required.

    You are mixing different things up.

    Yugoslavia was not the EU and its problems were rooted in a completely non-EU world.

    Peace and stability is very much one of the pillars of the EU and the vast majority of EU citizens are pro EU (and I'm including UK citizens here).

    There are rules. Greece broke them (it lied) to join the euro. The consequences were hard to swallow but totally necessary. The blame lies - ultimately - with those who took Greece to where they did: its politicians. The world financial crisis also had roots. Do you remember where? The euro crisis was simply made worse by that but is now better prepared for future depressions. Of course, the U.S would have loved to see the euro fail.

    There is no civil unrest in Europe. There were violent protests in a few places in France - and for a clear reason. They were not anti EU protests. This is nothing new for the French. Have you ever seen how they deal with Spanish tomatoes?

    Do you really understand why some elements of the EU would like a unified EU controlled armed forces? It isn't hard to figure out and is nothing new. The EDC dates back to the fifties! At some point an alternative idea will get support and move forward. The U.S will not be happy when that happens.

    Ukraine?

    Ukraine wants to be rid of Russia as a threat. The only way that is going to happen is by joining the EU. We know the people of Ukraine are willing to give their lives to achieve their goals but first they must get their house in order and tackle corruption. The EU has a strategic interest in Ukraine and a pressing need to reduce its dependence on Russian energy. That is already in progress.

    It's not 'euro spin' it's happening and people are supporting it in spite of populist movements peddling nationalistic manifests in most countries.

    And for something weird, defence and EU related:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/14/jet-powered-flyboard-soars-over-paris-for-bastille-day-parade

    It’s not surprising you’re confused if you quote and believe The Guardian newspaper!!!
    Yugoslavia wasn’t it the EU but the EU tried to stop the fighting the genocide by diplomatic means. It was up to NATO to stop it the only way possible, by military action. Afterwards after the fighting the EU was allowed in as a peacekeeping and policing force.

    The EU knew the Greeks lied about their economy to pass the rules. Italy Spain, Portugal and France didn’t even have to lie, the EU just ignored its own rules. And Greece’s problems are nothing compared to what Italy has.
    The Eurozone crisis was an inevitability, a bomb waiting to go off at any time. It just happened to have been the drying up of liquidity in the international markets in 2008 that set it off. You should be thankful, if that hadn’t triggered it and the same issue had gone on for another 10 years then even Germany would hVe been bankrupted by it.

    It may not be covered by the europhile media but there’s been weekly disturbances or riots by the yellow jackets for the last 34 weeks in Paris. And you obviously are ignorant of the rise of the AfD and waves of attacks against immigrants in Germany.

    As for the Ukraine, if it ever does submit a membership application to the EU, Russian tanks will arrive in Kiev before the application arrives in Brussels.

    And God help Europe if the EU thinks it can defend itself military without NATO. Only Poland would slow the Russians before they arrived at the French border. At the start of the year every single German submarine was broken, the majority of their air-force grounded, and their new frigates have to carry concrete ballast because the are top heavy with a 10 degree list to starboard. The German Tornadoes can’t fly at night because the lighting of the control panel interferes with their night vision:- an aircraft the RAF has already retired. And the German Defence Minister responsible for all this? She’s the new unelected EU Commission President!!!!

    BTW that Bastille Day Parade you linked to? Well the yellow jackets took the opportunity for more civil unrest...
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-48983089
    I am not confused.

    What problem do you have with the Guardian?

    It has participated in all of the recent multi-paper investigations of the last few years.

    At the time of the Balkan conflict the EU had no option but diplomacy, although from the beginning NATO was seen as the best way to handle a response. It wasn't until Javier Solana became the first High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security in 1999, that the EU had a common exterior voice.

    Weekly protests by yellow jackets have been widely reported (Guardian included) but the yellow jacket protests are aimed at Macron, not the EU and yesterday's protests were at best pockets of protest. A tiny minority of the people that turned out for the celebrations. After dark, we see the Anti-System come out to smash windows, burn rubbish bins and confront the police. They are not yellow jacket protesters and don't care about their protests. They are simply a form of hooligan.

    As for Germany, it has long kept its head down when it comes military hardware and for obvious reasons. It also had the difficult (and extremely costly process of reunification to deal with) plus the worst world economic downturn on record.

    That doesn't change the facts though and the facts are that the EU is moving to improve its defence options through more integration and efficiencies.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 112 of 186
    crowleycrowley Posts: 6,018member
    crowley said:
    avon b7 said:
    roake said:
    pjs_socal said:
    I am surprised that it took EU countries this long to enact these kinds of taxes. It’s common knowledge that Apple (with help from Ireland) took advantage of loopholes in international tax laws to reduce their tax burden. Of course, Apple has done nothing illegal, but it’s completely within each country’s rights to change tax laws to close those loopholes.
    So imagine if every UN country charged Apple an additional 3% on gross revenue.
    Where would the problem be? It's a decision each sovereign state must weigh up. And in this case it isn't 'Apple', it's companies that go above a specific limit.
    Taxing revenues is unheard of. And stupid. Only pre-tax profits are typically taxed. 

    If a company like Walmart or GM were taxed at 3% of revenues, they’d have no profits left. This ill-advised EU move opens up a completely new front in a likely serious trade war. 

    I predict they’ll have to back off. 
    Huh?   You don't pay sales tax?   Do you live in a cave somewhere?
    Groan... for the THIRD time now...

    Read the friggin’ thread, man. 
      Idid....   I'm asking where's that cave you live in where you don't need to pay sales tax?
    I asked him yesterday what he thought the meaningful difference was.  He hasn't answered.  I suspect he doesn't have an answer.
    See my answer above, in Post #96.
    So no answer then, gotcha.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 113 of 186
    spice-boyspice-boy Posts: 972member
    roake said:
    pjs_socal said:
    I am surprised that it took EU countries this long to enact these kinds of taxes. It’s common knowledge that Apple (with help from Ireland) took advantage of loopholes in international tax laws to reduce their tax burden. Of course, Apple has done nothing illegal, but it’s completely within each country’s rights to change tax laws to close those loopholes.
    So imagine if every UN country charged Apple an additional 3% on gross revenue.
    Yes, I'm imagining it.... Apple's stock value will crash and the company will be sold off in pieces to Amazon, Google and Facebook, right. 
  • Reply 114 of 186
    crowleycrowley Posts: 6,018member
    crowley said:
    1. Apple get criticised
    2. Wah!  Stop criticing Apple and change the laws!
    3. Laws get changed
    4. Wah!  How dare you change the laws, this is discriminatory against Apple!

    So tiresome, you lot.

    So why the fuck are you even here, posting and reading, if it is tiresome?

    Oh and there's another one, someone doesn't agree with you then they should leave. Classic.

    In answer: I guess I must enjoy being tired. That or none of your fucking business, I don't need to justify my presence to you or anyone.
    edited July 15 avon b7singularitymuthuk_vanalingamGeorgeBMac
  • Reply 115 of 186
    cat52cat52 Posts: 38member
    Abalos65 said:
    cat52 said:
    Abalos65 said:
    cat52 said:
    Abalos65 said:
    cat52 said:
    For those who think Europe has a well funded military, this article may catch you by surprise:

    A German battalion assigned to Nato's rapid response force used broomstick handles instead of guns on a joint exercise due to chronic equipment shortages:
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/germany/11420627/German-army-used-broomsticks-instead-of-guns-during-training.html


    So please spare us the talk of how Europe can defend itself.
    Do you think that such an article is a solid argument that all the armies of the WHOLE of Europe cannot defend themselves? This kind of article is just clickbait for people to confirm their biases or preconceived ideas. 

    So please spare us the talk of how this is evidence of anything. (Condescending, isn't it?)
    @Abalos65 - It's interesting when you come across an article which doesn't confirm your own bias, you are rather quick to dismiss it as "clickbait".  I guess that makes things easy...

    For many people though, when they hear the German army is so poorly funded it cannot even conduct a military exercise without having to resort to using broomsticks, it's rather eye opening.

    And given that Germany has the strongest economy in Europe, if even German soldiers don't have the funds to use real guns in NATO military exercises, then I'm not sure what other country you think is magically going to rush to Europe's defense if such a need arises.  The Flemish, perhaps?
    Just repeating the article again doesn't make it anymore convincing. You're still saying that because one time the German army had to use broomsticks Europe is not able to defend itself. I still call that a crappy argument. And this all the while I do think that armies in Europe should have larger budgets to comply with the 2% GDP agreement. Also, thank you for assuming my stance on the topic and pointing the finger back is also not childish at all.
    On an internet forum I'm not going to take an hour to write a post.  Internet forums are meant for quick little snippets of info.

    But if you must know, a friend of mine is a former member of the Swedish Special Protection Group, which is similar to the US's Rangers.

    Him and I have had long conversations about Europe's military preparedness, and in his opinion, both Sweden as well as Europe as a whole have cut their military budgets to such a point where they're basically a joke.

    And the article I posted about the German army having to use broomsticks in a NATO military exercise, is a prime example of just what a joke the European military now is.


    You are free to think such an article is "clickbait", and you are free to think the Europeans are capable of defending themselves from a conventional Russian military attack.  But people who are much closer to the European military scene than I presume you are, tend to differ.

    "A friend of my said" -some random forum person
    The arguments keep getting more and more convincing.

    The article you linked was not for just for 'quick info'. It was used for a cheap shot at Europe's different armies to make the point that it cannot defend itself, as you assert again in this response. I can just as easily link a Youtube video of US Army fails and make the same crappy/incorrect argument. You can say that it is just an internet forum, so I should lower myself to that kind of discourse. I won't.
    Since you seem to enjoy facts so much, NATO members are supposed to spend a minimum of 2% of their GDP on defense.  Germany only spends 1.2 or 1.3%, nowhere near what they should to maintain a basic combat readiness.  So therefore they end up having to use broomsticks instead of rifles because their military is short of funds.

    To be honest, this isn't really that difficult to understand, I'm not sure what your hangup is.
  • Reply 116 of 186
    cat52cat52 Posts: 38member
    avon b7 said:
    seanj said:
    avon b7 said:
    seanj said:
    avon b7 said:
    lkrupp said:
    iCave said:
    I'm not sure which country you are from, but looking at high quality health care and affordable education provided in most of the European Union, it bears evidence that high taxes, when used the right way, do pay social dividends.
    Complete baloney. The ONLY reason the EU has the social programs it has is because the EU members have NO military budgets to speak of. Instead the EU relies on the United States to protect it from the Russian Bear, the Middle East Islamic radicals. If the U.S. pulled out militarily from the EU and NATO those countries would have no choice but to dramatically increase their military budgets and those social programs would suffer big time. For over 70 years now the U.S. has spent its treasure to keep the peace in Europe.
    Now that is baloney. The absence of conflict in Europe is precisely because of the EU. 

    As for external threats and U.S 'protection', simply pull out of NATO if it costs too much!

    That won't happen because the U.S wants to keep its military bases in Europe. It wants to continue selling arms. It needs NATO allies. Without them (however 'small' their financial contribution) the Gulf wars would not have been possible and with so much debt, the U.S is rapidly approaching a point where it might have hardware to parade around but no be able to use in actual conflict. Wars are expensive.

    I'll take a balanced welfare state over any of that.


    https://www.businessinsider.com/how-nato-budget-is-funded-2018-7
    You're believing the spin from the Eurocrats I'm afraid, the EU has done NOTHING to prevent conflict in Europe.
    When Yugoslavia split and war broke out, including ethnic cleansing, it wasn't the EU that stopped it, it was NATO with the USA and UK at the forefront.
    As for the current ongoing war in the Ukraine, that's solely due to the EU courting the Ukraine to get them to join as part of their ongoing aggressive expansionist policy. Every observer pointed out that Russia would never allow Ukraine to join, but the EU persisted.
    Meanwhile there is civil unrest across Europe - weekly riots in France for months - and the rise of extremists on both left and right due to the EU's disasterous Euro policy. Economists warned back in the 90's that allowing countries with divergent economies to use a common currency would result in economic collapse, so rules were put in place to stop it. But when Eurocrats realised that Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy and France would fail the test and be excluded from the Euro, they decided to ignore their own rules. As a result they set in train the sovereign debt crisis that erupted in 2009 and is still ongoing. The reason they did this was simple to trap these countries in the EU, leaving after having adopted the Euro would be nearly impossible.

    The USA and Canda should consider a mutual defence pact with a smaller set of countries - the UK and France account for nearly 50% of ALL of europe's military capability. In the long term, the like of Macron in France and the Eurocrats in Brussels want to undermine NATO and rely more on an EU Army. The hilarious thing is they don't want to fund it properly, for example, Germany's armed forces reduced to a token force with most ships, aircraft, and submarines unsable due to repairs being required.

    You are mixing different things up.

    Yugoslavia was not the EU and its problems were rooted in a completely non-EU world.

    Peace and stability is very much one of the pillars of the EU and the vast majority of EU citizens are pro EU (and I'm including UK citizens here).

    There are rules. Greece broke them (it lied) to join the euro. The consequences were hard to swallow but totally necessary. The blame lies - ultimately - with those who took Greece to where they did: its politicians. The world financial crisis also had roots. Do you remember where? The euro crisis was simply made worse by that but is now better prepared for future depressions. Of course, the U.S would have loved to see the euro fail.

    There is no civil unrest in Europe. There were violent protests in a few places in France - and for a clear reason. They were not anti EU protests. This is nothing new for the French. Have you ever seen how they deal with Spanish tomatoes?

    Do you really understand why some elements of the EU would like a unified EU controlled armed forces? It isn't hard to figure out and is nothing new. The EDC dates back to the fifties! At some point an alternative idea will get support and move forward. The U.S will not be happy when that happens.

    Ukraine?

    Ukraine wants to be rid of Russia as a threat. The only way that is going to happen is by joining the EU. We know the people of Ukraine are willing to give their lives to achieve their goals but first they must get their house in order and tackle corruption. The EU has a strategic interest in Ukraine and a pressing need to reduce its dependence on Russian energy. That is already in progress.

    It's not 'euro spin' it's happening and people are supporting it in spite of populist movements peddling nationalistic manifests in most countries.

    And for something weird, defence and EU related:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/14/jet-powered-flyboard-soars-over-paris-for-bastille-day-parade

    It’s not surprising you’re confused if you quote and believe The Guardian newspaper!!!
    Yugoslavia wasn’t it the EU but the EU tried to stop the fighting the genocide by diplomatic means. It was up to NATO to stop it the only way possible, by military action. Afterwards after the fighting the EU was allowed in as a peacekeeping and policing force.

    The EU knew the Greeks lied about their economy to pass the rules. Italy Spain, Portugal and France didn’t even have to lie, the EU just ignored its own rules. And Greece’s problems are nothing compared to what Italy has.
    The Eurozone crisis was an inevitability, a bomb waiting to go off at any time. It just happened to have been the drying up of liquidity in the international markets in 2008 that set it off. You should be thankful, if that hadn’t triggered it and the same issue had gone on for another 10 years then even Germany would hVe been bankrupted by it.

    It may not be covered by the europhile media but there’s been weekly disturbances or riots by the yellow jackets for the last 34 weeks in Paris. And you obviously are ignorant of the rise of the AfD and waves of attacks against immigrants in Germany.

    As for the Ukraine, if it ever does submit a membership application to the EU, Russian tanks will arrive in Kiev before the application arrives in Brussels.

    And God help Europe if the EU thinks it can defend itself military without NATO. Only Poland would slow the Russians before they arrived at the French border. At the start of the year every single German submarine was broken, the majority of their air-force grounded, and their new frigates have to carry concrete ballast because the are top heavy with a 10 degree list to starboard. The German Tornadoes can’t fly at night because the lighting of the control panel interferes with their night vision:- an aircraft the RAF has already retired. And the German Defence Minister responsible for all this? She’s the new unelected EU Commission President!!!!

    BTW that Bastille Day Parade you linked to? Well the yellow jackets took the opportunity for more civil unrest...
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-48983089
    I am not confused.

    What problem do you have with the Guardian?

    It has participated in all of the recent multi-paper investigations of the last few years.

    At the time of the Balkan conflict the EU had no option but diplomacy, although from the beginning NATO was seen as the best way to handle a response. It wasn't until Javier Solana became the first High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security in 1999, that the EU had a common exterior voice.

    Weekly protests by yellow jackets have been widely reported (Guardian included) but the yellow jacket protests are aimed at Macron, not the EU and yesterday's protests were at best pockets of protest. A tiny minority of the people that turned out for the celebrations. After dark, we see the Anti-System come out to smash windows, burn rubbish bins and confront the police. They are not yellow jacket protesters and don't care about their protests. They are simply a form of hooligan.

    As for Germany, it has long kept its head down when it comes military hardware and for obvious reasons. It also had the difficult (and extremely costly process of reunification to deal with) plus the worst world economic downturn on record.

    That doesn't change the facts though and the facts are that the EU is moving to improve its defence options through more integration and efficiencies.
    The EU's desire for an EU army has nothing to do with "efficiency", rather it's about weakening the member states.

    For instance if Poland no longer has a standing army of their own, Brussels can order them around with ever increasing force in the years to come.

    And considering a wide divide is developing between the nations of Western Europe versus Eastern on a range of issues, (migration, taxation) this is no small advantage in Brussel's favor to have an army of their own.
  • Reply 117 of 186
    dougd said:
    Awww Apple has to pay some tax boo hoo
    Got news for you - Apple doesn’t pay this tax, their customers do.

  • Reply 118 of 186
    jbdragonjbdragon Posts: 2,170member
    dougd said:
    Awww Apple has to pay some tax boo hoo


    No Apple is NOT going to pay those Taxes. Corporations don't pay taxes, YOU DO!!! Prices will go up to cover the taxes. This is the #1 way for Politicians to tax the people and yet look good, like they're doing something that everyone likes. Gets those EVIL company's!!! If they just flatr out raised taxes on YOU, you'd be mad and vote them out of office. Instead, they do this round about way. They Tax the company's, the company's raise prices, YOU the customer are now paying higher prices, paying for that new tax. Really, it's just another tax on YOU. Company's aren't going to just eat it as it cuts into their bottom line and the shareholders aren't going to just allow them to eat the cost. For many things, profit margins are pretty slim. a 3% tax could be a break even point. Not even worth doing business. Prices will have to go up to compensate.

    So no, Apple won't be paying these taxes. YOU will if you buy anything from Apple, or Google, or Amazon, etc. Have fun with that.
    edited July 15 anantksundaram
  • Reply 119 of 186
    crowleycrowley Posts: 6,018member
    jbdragon said:
    dougd said:
    Awww Apple has to pay some tax boo hoo


    No Apple is NOT going to pay those Taxes. Corporations don't pay taxes, YOU DO!!! Prices will go up to cover the taxes. This is the #1 way for Politicians to tax the people and yet look good, like they're doing something that everyone likes. Gets those EVIL company's!!! If they just flatr out raised taxes on YOU, you'd be mad and vote them out of office. Instead, they do this round about way. They Tax the company's, the company's raise prices, YOU the customer are now paying higher prices, paying for that new tax. Really, it's just another tax on YOU. Company's aren't going to just eat it as it cuts into their bottom line and the shareholders aren't going to just allow them to eat the cost. For many things, profit margins are pretty slim. a 3% tax could be a break even point. Not even worth doing business. Prices will have to go up to compensate.

    So no, Apple won't be paying these taxes. YOU will if you buy anything from Apple, or Google, or Amazon, etc. Have fun with that.
    How much stuff do you buy from Google?
  • Reply 120 of 186
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 4,198member
    cat52 said:
    avon b7 said:
    seanj said:
    avon b7 said:
    seanj said:
    avon b7 said:
    lkrupp said:
    iCave said:
    I'm not sure which country you are from, but looking at high quality health care and affordable education provided in most of the European Union, it bears evidence that high taxes, when used the right way, do pay social dividends.
    Complete baloney. The ONLY reason the EU has the social programs it has is because the EU members have NO military budgets to speak of. Instead the EU relies on the United States to protect it from the Russian Bear, the Middle East Islamic radicals. If the U.S. pulled out militarily from the EU and NATO those countries would have no choice but to dramatically increase their military budgets and those social programs would suffer big time. For over 70 years now the U.S. has spent its treasure to keep the peace in Europe.
    Now that is baloney. The absence of conflict in Europe is precisely because of the EU. 

    As for external threats and U.S 'protection', simply pull out of NATO if it costs too much!

    That won't happen because the U.S wants to keep its military bases in Europe. It wants to continue selling arms. It needs NATO allies. Without them (however 'small' their financial contribution) the Gulf wars would not have been possible and with so much debt, the U.S is rapidly approaching a point where it might have hardware to parade around but no be able to use in actual conflict. Wars are expensive.

    I'll take a balanced welfare state over any of that.


    https://www.businessinsider.com/how-nato-budget-is-funded-2018-7
    You're believing the spin from the Eurocrats I'm afraid, the EU has done NOTHING to prevent conflict in Europe.
    When Yugoslavia split and war broke out, including ethnic cleansing, it wasn't the EU that stopped it, it was NATO with the USA and UK at the forefront.
    As for the current ongoing war in the Ukraine, that's solely due to the EU courting the Ukraine to get them to join as part of their ongoing aggressive expansionist policy. Every observer pointed out that Russia would never allow Ukraine to join, but the EU persisted.
    Meanwhile there is civil unrest across Europe - weekly riots in France for months - and the rise of extremists on both left and right due to the EU's disasterous Euro policy. Economists warned back in the 90's that allowing countries with divergent economies to use a common currency would result in economic collapse, so rules were put in place to stop it. But when Eurocrats realised that Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy and France would fail the test and be excluded from the Euro, they decided to ignore their own rules. As a result they set in train the sovereign debt crisis that erupted in 2009 and is still ongoing. The reason they did this was simple to trap these countries in the EU, leaving after having adopted the Euro would be nearly impossible.

    The USA and Canda should consider a mutual defence pact with a smaller set of countries - the UK and France account for nearly 50% of ALL of europe's military capability. In the long term, the like of Macron in France and the Eurocrats in Brussels want to undermine NATO and rely more on an EU Army. The hilarious thing is they don't want to fund it properly, for example, Germany's armed forces reduced to a token force with most ships, aircraft, and submarines unsable due to repairs being required.

    You are mixing different things up.

    Yugoslavia was not the EU and its problems were rooted in a completely non-EU world.

    Peace and stability is very much one of the pillars of the EU and the vast majority of EU citizens are pro EU (and I'm including UK citizens here).

    There are rules. Greece broke them (it lied) to join the euro. The consequences were hard to swallow but totally necessary. The blame lies - ultimately - with those who took Greece to where they did: its politicians. The world financial crisis also had roots. Do you remember where? The euro crisis was simply made worse by that but is now better prepared for future depressions. Of course, the U.S would have loved to see the euro fail.

    There is no civil unrest in Europe. There were violent protests in a few places in France - and for a clear reason. They were not anti EU protests. This is nothing new for the French. Have you ever seen how they deal with Spanish tomatoes?

    Do you really understand why some elements of the EU would like a unified EU controlled armed forces? It isn't hard to figure out and is nothing new. The EDC dates back to the fifties! At some point an alternative idea will get support and move forward. The U.S will not be happy when that happens.

    Ukraine?

    Ukraine wants to be rid of Russia as a threat. The only way that is going to happen is by joining the EU. We know the people of Ukraine are willing to give their lives to achieve their goals but first they must get their house in order and tackle corruption. The EU has a strategic interest in Ukraine and a pressing need to reduce its dependence on Russian energy. That is already in progress.

    It's not 'euro spin' it's happening and people are supporting it in spite of populist movements peddling nationalistic manifests in most countries.

    And for something weird, defence and EU related:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/14/jet-powered-flyboard-soars-over-paris-for-bastille-day-parade

    It’s not surprising you’re confused if you quote and believe The Guardian newspaper!!!
    Yugoslavia wasn’t it the EU but the EU tried to stop the fighting the genocide by diplomatic means. It was up to NATO to stop it the only way possible, by military action. Afterwards after the fighting the EU was allowed in as a peacekeeping and policing force.

    The EU knew the Greeks lied about their economy to pass the rules. Italy Spain, Portugal and France didn’t even have to lie, the EU just ignored its own rules. And Greece’s problems are nothing compared to what Italy has.
    The Eurozone crisis was an inevitability, a bomb waiting to go off at any time. It just happened to have been the drying up of liquidity in the international markets in 2008 that set it off. You should be thankful, if that hadn’t triggered it and the same issue had gone on for another 10 years then even Germany would hVe been bankrupted by it.

    It may not be covered by the europhile media but there’s been weekly disturbances or riots by the yellow jackets for the last 34 weeks in Paris. And you obviously are ignorant of the rise of the AfD and waves of attacks against immigrants in Germany.

    As for the Ukraine, if it ever does submit a membership application to the EU, Russian tanks will arrive in Kiev before the application arrives in Brussels.

    And God help Europe if the EU thinks it can defend itself military without NATO. Only Poland would slow the Russians before they arrived at the French border. At the start of the year every single German submarine was broken, the majority of their air-force grounded, and their new frigates have to carry concrete ballast because the are top heavy with a 10 degree list to starboard. The German Tornadoes can’t fly at night because the lighting of the control panel interferes with their night vision:- an aircraft the RAF has already retired. And the German Defence Minister responsible for all this? She’s the new unelected EU Commission President!!!!

    BTW that Bastille Day Parade you linked to? Well the yellow jackets took the opportunity for more civil unrest...
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-48983089
    I am not confused.

    What problem do you have with the Guardian?

    It has participated in all of the recent multi-paper investigations of the last few years.

    At the time of the Balkan conflict the EU had no option but diplomacy, although from the beginning NATO was seen as the best way to handle a response. It wasn't until Javier Solana became the first High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security in 1999, that the EU had a common exterior voice.

    Weekly protests by yellow jackets have been widely reported (Guardian included) but the yellow jacket protests are aimed at Macron, not the EU and yesterday's protests were at best pockets of protest. A tiny minority of the people that turned out for the celebrations. After dark, we see the Anti-System come out to smash windows, burn rubbish bins and confront the police. They are not yellow jacket protesters and don't care about their protests. They are simply a form of hooligan.

    As for Germany, it has long kept its head down when it comes military hardware and for obvious reasons. It also had the difficult (and extremely costly process of reunification to deal with) plus the worst world economic downturn on record.

    That doesn't change the facts though and the facts are that the EU is moving to improve its defence options through more integration and efficiencies.
    The EU's desire for an EU army has nothing to do with "efficiency", rather it's about weakening the member states.

    For instance if Poland no longer has a standing army of their own, Brussels can order them around with ever increasing force in the years to come.

    And considering a wide divide is developing between the nations of Western Europe versus Eastern on a range of issues, (migration, taxation) this is no small advantage in Brussel's favor to have an army of their own.
    It is now clear you haven't read anything on the subject.

    Any proposal for an EU-wide defence force would require unanimous support from all member states. Yes, even those on the other side of that divide you mention. They have a veto!

    They are also net receivers from the EU and enjoy EU aide.

    It is still early days. The Franco-German accord is just one tiny step.

    If you had read anything, even at a high level, on this subject you would have understood that efficicies are one of the goals. They are referenced in one form or another, all over the place.

    -- Annex the Council Conclusions on Security and Defence in the context 
    of the EU Global Strategy, adopted by the Council at its 3700th meeting held on 17 June 2019.--

    Point 25: EDF

    "Looks forward to the swift adoption and implementation of the European Defence Fund, following the common understanding reached in February by the European Parliament and the Council on the related Regulation and once an overall agreement on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) for 2021-2027 is reached. The Council stresses the importance of the Fund in helping to enhance the competitiveness, efficiency and innovation capacity of the EDTIB throughout the Union. The Council also welcomes the foreseen role of the EDF in promoting disruptive technologies for defence."


    edited July 15 GeorgeBMac
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