Following defeat, European Commission doubles down on Apple tax critiques

2

Comments

  • Reply 21 of 48
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,743member
    kscherer said:
    tylersdad said:
    Apple doesn't make tax law, they just follow it. If the EC doesn't like their current tax laws, maybe they should fix them?
    They did "fix them", which is what this has been all about. The EU passed new tax laws, and then tried to back-date the new laws and charge Apple for taxes from income generated prior to the "fix".

    It would be the same as if the U.S. government passed a new tax law in 2020 that raised your income tax, and then tried to collect on income from 1990 forward. It's that kind of stupid.
    Nope.  Not what happened.
    JWSC
  • Reply 22 of 48
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,743member
    Beats said:
    At this point Apple should buy an island and store their money there. I'm thinking this is illegal right?
    Why?  They have plenty of money stored in tax havens already.  Soon after the whole Ireland affair started shining a spotlight on them they moved cash to Jersey.

    They still need to earn the money in the first place.
    h2p
  • Reply 23 of 48
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,743member
    tylersdad said:
    Apple doesn't make tax law, they just follow it. If the EC doesn't like their current tax laws, maybe they should fix them?
    You mean like...

    Just a few hours after the General Court ruling, the EU unveiled sweeping tax plans aimed at more transparent, simpler and fairer taxes. The plan included provisions that put increased pressure on digital platforms, like Apple's App Store.
    Also, Apple don't "just follow" tax laws.  They actively structure their business to operate in the periphery and the gaps.
  • Reply 24 of 48
    crowley said:
    tylersdad said:
    Apple doesn't make tax law, they just follow it. If the EC doesn't like their current tax laws, maybe they should fix them?
    You mean like...

    Just a few hours after the General Court ruling, the EU unveiled sweeping tax plans aimed at more transparent, simpler and fairer taxes. The plan included provisions that put increased pressure on digital platforms, like Apple's App Store.
    Also, Apple don't "just follow" tax laws.  They actively structure their business to operate in the periphery and the gaps.
    The tax law is still the tax law.  They can change it, but it is unfair to make changes retroactive since business models are based on the cost to operate.  The gaps exist because someone lobbied for them.  If one company can take advantage then so should another.  It is just business.
    cat52jbdragon
  • Reply 25 of 48
    aderutteraderutter Posts: 478member
    crowley said:
    You mean like...

    Also, Apple don't "just follow" tax laws.  They actively structure their business to operate in the periphery and the gaps.

    Yes. The EU should not have brought this case in the first place eveything Apple and Ireland did was entirely legal.

    If the EU want to change things yes they need to change the laws for the future, but the EU is lazy and inefficient and they thought it would be  easier to just money grab accompanied by false accusations.

    It is Apple’s responsibility to structure it’s business however they can to best benefit Apple. The same way we as individuals don’t pay tax we don’t have to. Tax avoidance is not tax evasion. For example, some years I buy equipment for my business in advance of needing it to reduce a pending tax bill, that is my choice, is legal and in my opinion is financially prudent.
    cat52jbdragon
  • Reply 26 of 48
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,462member
    elijahg said:
    It also included articles that could sidestep the power of veto by member states. That's part of a broader push to curb "corporate tax regimes of member states," including countries known for allowing and fostering tax evasion or avoidance.
    The gradual erosion of the rights of member states continues as they slowly march forward with the EU's ultimate goal of a United States of Europe.

    The U.S. founding fathers feared federalism. Federalism continued to fought but the battle was lost when the federal income tax was established in 1913 with the 16th amendment. The federal government is now all powerful and can bully any state into submission by withholding money. Europe is on its way to the same dystopian, centralized federalism that we in the U.S. succumbed to. 
    cat52jbdragon
  • Reply 27 of 48
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,743member
    crowley said:
    tylersdad said:
    Apple doesn't make tax law, they just follow it. If the EC doesn't like their current tax laws, maybe they should fix them?
    You mean like...

    Just a few hours after the General Court ruling, the EU unveiled sweeping tax plans aimed at more transparent, simpler and fairer taxes. The plan included provisions that put increased pressure on digital platforms, like Apple's App Store.
    Also, Apple don't "just follow" tax laws.  They actively structure their business to operate in the periphery and the gaps.
    The tax law is still the tax law.  They can change it, but it is unfair to make changes retroactive since business models are based on the cost to operate.  The gaps exist because someone lobbied for them.  If one company can take advantage then so should another.  It is just business.
    There are no retroactive changes being applied.

    And gaps exist because tax law is complicated, and international variations make it even more so.  The Irish residency loophole was unlikely to have been because of any lobbying, it's just a gap.
  • Reply 28 of 48
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,743member
    aderutter said:
    crowley said:
    You mean like...

    Also, Apple don't "just follow" tax laws.  They actively structure their business to operate in the periphery and the gaps.

    Yes. The EU should not have brought this case in the first place eveything Apple and Ireland did was entirely legal.

    If the EU want to change things yes they need to change the laws for the future, but the EU is lazy and inefficient and they thought it would be  easier to just money grab accompanied by false accusations.

    It is Apple’s responsibility to structure it’s business however they can to best benefit Apple. The same way we as individuals don’t pay tax we don’t have to. Tax avoidance is not tax evasion. For example, some years I buy equipment for my business in advance of needing it to reduce a pending tax bill, that is my choice, is legal and in my opinion is financially prudent.
    The case was brought to determine if what Apple and Ireland did were legal. If cases were only brought against things where it is already pre-proven that something illegal took place then you wouldn't need a court to hear it.  And again (again!) this isn't a money grab because the EU are not going to get the tax revenue, that is owed to Ireland.

    Most people do not structure their affairs to absolutely minimise tax.  Apple and other similar multinational corporations make a cottage industry out of it.
  • Reply 29 of 48
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 20,225member
    crowley said:

    Most people do not structure their affairs to absolutely minimise tax.  Apple and other similar multinational corporations make a cottage industry out of it.
    Good for them! I'd like to see more of it.
    inTIMidatorcat52
  • Reply 30 of 48
    geekmeegeekmee Posts: 473member
    This goes to the heart of ‘meeting of the minds’ concept in contracts:
    ‘If we don’t like the deal, we may change the laws after the fact, and then retroactively make you pay for it.’ 
    edited July 2020 cat52Rayz2016
  • Reply 31 of 48
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,743member
    crowley said:

    Most people do not structure their affairs to absolutely minimise tax.  Apple and other similar multinational corporations make a cottage industry out of it.
    Good for them! I'd like to see more of it.
    You'd like for more citizens of your country to take up residence in a tax haven and/or incorporate themselves in a secrecy jurisdiction so as to avoid income tax that would be spent on your local community services?

    Honestly, I think thats a sociopathic thing to want.  That, or just naive political posturing.
    edited July 2020
  • Reply 32 of 48
    JWSCJWSC Posts: 1,012member
    geekmee said:
    This goes to the heart of ‘meeting of the minds’ concept in contracts:
    ‘If we don’t like the deal, we may change the laws after the fact, and then retroactively make you pay for it.’ 
    While it appears from the outside that the European Commission wanted retroactive tax changes, that’s not actually what they were arguing in court.

    They made the argument that when the Maastricht treaty was enacted in 1992 Ireland should have updated their tax laws to comply with the treaty. Therefore, Ireland was operating outside the European Union tax law since that time and should have been receiving more money from Apple. But the court did not find substantial evidence that this was the case.

    So back to square one for the Commission. Unfortunately, they are so deeply offended that Apple hasn’t paid their perceived fair share that the Commission appears to be ignoring the court findings and is hell bent on getting Apple and other big online services companies. And they don’t seem to care if they do it through democratic means or not. It’s not a promising outlook from any point of view.
    cat52uraharajbdragon
  • Reply 33 of 48
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 20,225member
    crowley said:
    crowley said:

    Most people do not structure their affairs to absolutely minimise tax.  Apple and other similar multinational corporations make a cottage industry out of it.
    Good for them! I'd like to see more of it.
    You'd like for more citizens of your country to take up residence in a tax haven and/or incorporate themselves in a secrecy jurisdiction so as to avoid income tax that would be spent on your local community services?

    Honestly, I think thats a sociopathic thing to want.  That, or just naive political posturing.
    Ah, someone who disagrees with you must a sociopath and/or naive.

    Pretty much reveals the abject quality of what passes off for an argument from your side, don't you think?
    cat52
  • Reply 34 of 48
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,743member
    crowley said:
    crowley said:

    Most people do not structure their affairs to absolutely minimise tax.  Apple and other similar multinational corporations make a cottage industry out of it.
    Good for them! I'd like to see more of it.
    You'd like for more citizens of your country to take up residence in a tax haven and/or incorporate themselves in a secrecy jurisdiction so as to avoid income tax that would be spent on your local community services?

    Honestly, I think thats a sociopathic thing to want.  That, or just naive political posturing.
    Ah, someone who disagrees with you must a sociopath and/or naive.

    Pretty much reveals the abject quality of what passes off for an argument from your side, don't you think?
    I'm being honest about my thoughts on your position.  If you'd like to try to convince me otherwise, I'm open to it. 

    So tell me, why do you want to see more people do their utmost to minimise their tax burden?
  • Reply 35 of 48
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 20,225member

    JWSC said:
    geekmee said:
    This goes to the heart of ‘meeting of the minds’ concept in contracts:
    ‘If we don’t like the deal, we may change the laws after the fact, and then retroactively make you pay for it.’ 
    While it appears from the outside that the European Commission wanted retroactive tax changes, that’s not actually what they were arguing in court.

    They made the argument that when the Maastricht treaty was enacted in 1992 Ireland should have updated their tax laws to comply with the treaty. Therefore, Ireland was operating outside the European Union tax law since that time and should have been receiving more money from Apple. But the court did not find substantial evidence that this was the case.

    So back to square one for the Commission. Unfortunately, they are so deeply offended that Apple hasn’t paid their perceived fair share that the Commission appears to be ignoring the court findings and is hell bent on getting Apple and other big online services companies. And they don’t seem to care if they do it through democratic means or not. It’s not a promising outlook from any point of view.
    As an editorial in the Wall Street Journal noted: "Dublin’s low tax rates for all comers, and the economic success it enjoys as a result, highlight the folly of imposing high taxes elsewhere. The Apple case was among the first and the largest attempt to stifle tax competition through misapplying antitrust law. That effort is winding down as Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager has suffered a string of legal defeats, including a case targeting Starbucks’s taxes in the Netherlands."
    cat52JWSCjbdragon
  • Reply 36 of 48
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,111member
    crowley said:
    aderutter said:
    crowley said:
    You mean like...

    Also, Apple don't "just follow" tax laws.  They actively structure their business to operate in the periphery and the gaps.

    Yes. The EU should not have brought this case in the first place eveything Apple and Ireland did was entirely legal.

    If the EU want to change things yes they need to change the laws for the future, but the EU is lazy and inefficient and they thought it would be  easier to just money grab accompanied by false accusations.

    It is Apple’s responsibility to structure it’s business however they can to best benefit Apple. The same way we as individuals don’t pay tax we don’t have to. Tax avoidance is not tax evasion. For example, some years I buy equipment for my business in advance of needing it to reduce a pending tax bill, that is my choice, is legal and in my opinion is financially prudent.
    The case was brought to determine if what Apple and Ireland did were legal. If cases were only brought against things where it is already pre-proven that something illegal took place then you wouldn't need a court to hear it.  And again (again!) this isn't a money grab because the EU are not going to get the tax revenue, that is owed to Ireland.

    Most people do not structure their affairs to absolutely minimise tax.  Apple and other similar multinational corporations make a cottage industry out of it.
    If people do not make sure they minimise the tax they pay, they are making themselves poorer for no purpose. It isn’t as though the government is as careful or efficient or effective with how it spends the taxes it extracts from the people that it took it from. The easiest money to waste is Other Peoples’ Money.

    In Australia, we had a media mogul named Kerry Packer who was asked to front a star chamber senate inquiry about Public Television claims his companies weren’t paying the taxes this taxpayer funded entity thought he should. This was milk for the green and Aust Democrat* senators on the committee. His reply to their questions was gold, made the senators look like the venal idiots they were, and a lesson for everyone:

     I am not evading tax in any way, shape or form. Now of course I am minimizing my tax and if anybody in this country doesn't minimize their tax they want their heads read because as a government I can tell you you're not spending it that well that we should be donating extra.
     ...
    I've already given you the answer on this subject, I have told you that I pay whatever tax I am required to pay under the law, not a penny more, not a penny less, and the suggestion that I am trying to evade tax, which is what you're putting forward, I find highly offensive and I don't intend to cooperate with you in the blackening of my character.

    The senators, of course, knew all this as his companies were highly visible and highly scrutinised. The Australian Democrat senator even admitted they knew he wasn’t evading tax at the beginning of the attempted crucifixion. They just thought they could make themselves look good by attacking a big fish. In other words, they were just being politicians, the lowest form of life on this planet.


    * the Australian Democrat party no longer exists as a viable political entity, its economic philosophy equivalent to the what people think of the greens. The Australian Liberal Party although it has many conservative members in partnership) would be the closest to the American Democrats. we don't really have an ROP equivalent in any meaningful level of support.

    edited July 2020 jbdragon
  • Reply 37 of 48
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,743member
    entropys said:

    If people do not make sure they minimise the tax they pay, they are making themselves poorer for no purpose. 
    As I've specifically called out changing residence and incorporation then it should be evident that your "no purpose" will include significant time, effort and  inconvenience.  And I'd add the very real disassociation from the society and community that you are a part of.  Taxation is social contract.  If your concern is that government doesn't spend money well then your recourse should be seeking to join and/or reform the legislature and civil service, not ducking social obligations by underhand means.  
  • Reply 38 of 48
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 5,690member
    What's that word for doing the same thing over and over again hoping the outcome will be different the next time... wait, I know... 
    It's not "insanity" and Einstein never said it to begin with. 
  • Reply 39 of 48
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 5,690member

    Beats said:
    At this point Apple should buy an island and store their money there. I'm thinking this is illegal right?
    This has nothing to do with "storing money", it's about taxes in the jurisdiction where the money was earned. Moving money out of a jurisdiction doesn't absolve you from owing taxes, regardless of what country your newly purchased island is in. 
  • Reply 40 of 48
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 20,225member
    What's that word for doing the same thing over and over again hoping the outcome will be different the next time... wait, I know... 
    It's not "insanity" and Einstein never said it to begin with. 
    In case you missed it, I said neither "insanity" nor "Einstein."
Sign In or Register to comment.