macaholic_1948 wrote: »
When ethics and law are at cross purposes, one must follow the law. That is good corporate governance. It is a fiduciary responsibility that must be met. It is ethical behavior. And, most importantly, it supports the rule of law. If you don't like that ethics and the law are at odds, change the law to suit your ethical purpose. If you can't do that, accept that others' views of what is ethical are at odds with yours. If that is still unsettling, either change your ethical values or work to change others'.
lghulm wrote: »
Sorry I have to correct you. Under Australian law (tested in the courts) fiduciary duty (to shareholders) is not considered preeminent over common ethics and the good of society. If a business can be shown to have acted within the law, but with the intended PURPOSE of contravening the SPIRIT of the law than they may still be found guilty of the crime. The cases may be quiet challenging to prosecute but there is precedent in Australia and our laws are cleverly written to this effect. What you say may be true under US law but respectfully is incorrect under Australian law which you are obviously unfamiliar. It is a contravention of Australian law to knowingly circumvent the spirit of the law for the benefit of shareholders - let's be very clear about that.
Australia needs Apple a lot more than Apple needs Australia. They could pull out completely and their bottom line would not even hiccup - they are that big.
$8,000,000,000.00 might sound like a lot of money, but that is over 10 years. Apple makes that much elsewhere in minutes. Who cares about Australia? They had better watch out or Apple will just cut them off.
According to this document:
"Apple does not hold money on a Caribbean island, does not have a bank account in the Cayman Islands, ... "
Nope. Not at all.
Except that wasn’t the case.
given the tendency of producers to sell at whatever price the market will bear, what will happen to prices in any market the government enters? They have the most money of any organisation, due to taking up to 40% of everyone's income in taxes. So I think those health care costs would be a lot lower if the sellers of health care goods and services knew they were selling to individuals and not the government.
Yes! Because so many fewer could afford it, demand for health care would fall sharply, so they would have to lower prices! And likely, population levels would fall too, further reducing demand and thereby further reducing prices.
Why don't we do this?
And then Apple would get get sued by its' shareholders for making these voluntary yet 'illegal' payments as it would be a breech of the corporation's fiduciary responsibilities to its' shareholders.
Not if the PR value exceeded the expense. Why do you think Apple installs so much renewable energy? Because it is the cheapest way to power stuff? People LIKE "green" companies and buy their stuff. Being green is a path to increased profits, despite the small extra costs.
So too giving money to charity, like sponsoring big music festivals. So too (maybe) paying a fair amount of income tax.
But it seems obvious that Apple does not think that paying a fair amount of income tax would yield profits in excess of the expense. So they don't do it. Tim knows exactly how this stuff works, believe me...
There is no “transfer pricing” here. Transfer pricing would mean that the actually work, or IP, in creating an iPad happened in Australis and was transferred to Ireland or the US. Thats not what happened. Australians bought iPads, and the profits on those sales were declared where they always were declared, that is where the headquarters are. There is a problem in Irish law, but there is ABSOLUTELY NO WAY THAT AUSTRALIA IS OWED ANY PROFIT ON MARGINS OF IPADS AUSTRALIANS ARE BUYING. Australia already gets taxes on sales ( sales tax) and on retail profiles in the stores. Thats all Australia will ever get even if Ireland charges Apple 35% of tax.
Let me get this straight:
Australia has "cleverly written" laws that find parties "guilty of the crime" even if it is shown that they "acted within the law".
Unless Australia has access to three pre-cogs hooked up in a pool somewhere I have a hard time believing in your interpretation of Australian law. :-)
charlituna wrote: »
So they followed the laws that let them do this. Not avoided taxes illegally like the lede implies.
It is no different from an individual taking advantage of every tax deduction he/she is entitled to under the law.
There is no “transfer pricing” here. Transfer pricing would mean that the actually work, or IP, in creating an iPad happened in Australis and was transferred to Ireland or the US. Thats not what happened. Australians bought iPads, and the profits on those sales were declared where they always were declared, that is where the headquarters are.
It's obvious that you're trying to represent an arguably silly viewpoint that you don't personally support.
asdasd wrote: »
This report and most of the comments are spurious.
1) companies don't owe tax on revenue you owe it on profits.
2) companies are taxed where they are based not where they sell.
gtr wrote: »
Another one of those beautiful ironic examples that we find in life, where one individual's selfishness benefits the many.
For another example, see 'Steve Jobs'.
And no doubt many others.
benjamin frost wrote: »
The Kerry citation is not an example of selfishness.
frood wrote: »
Perfectly legal. Shouldn't be. Offshoring has been around and has stunk since long before Apple made it out of the minor leagues. Somehow it never got addressed because the largest offenders always seemed to be the 'big oil' companies who people somehow expect to be evil. The issue never really gained a lot of attention, and lawmakers are always happy to turn a blind eye for a PAC contribution.
When Exxon Mobil was in front they were getting the heat for it. Apple fans didn't notice, mostly because Exxon isn't Apple. Now Apple is the biggest offender and they get the heat.
Apple hasn't done anything wrong, but hopefully enough attention gets drawn to the issue that our politicians fix it. And by fix it I mean fix the laws, not hold hearings pretending it is the evil corporations fault for legally maximizing profits.
Ireland obviously benefits tremendously from this. US corporations, and others, get all the benefits of being US based. They use our roads, our people, are defended by our military, and benefit tremendously from higher education system. When they have an international trade dispute, they clog and congest the US court system, not the Irish one, with appeal after appeal. All those things cost money, and US taxpayers (and I'm sure Aussies, Brits, Germans etc respectively) it stinks when some of the entities benefitting the most from them are percentage wise paying the least.
Corporations all do that. It may be problematic and grant the largest businesses an unfair advantage, but it needs to be dealt with via updated laws. As Frood pointed out, Apple just happens to be big enough to attract attention. I would add that Apple clamors for press attention, so it happens to include negative attention when they engage in something that should be admonished.