And on the corporate side, big business is laying off workers while using its extra cash to … wait for it … buy back their stock. Job creators, my ass. If business won’t hire, government must. Tax these motherfuckers already.
Not a shocker, but still:
“The problem is not that people like Warren Buffett pay tax at a 17 percent rate, it’s that they can use complex transactions not available to most Americans to get cash from their appreciated stock without paying any taxes at all,” Miller said.
The rate at which the 400 U.S. taxpayers with the highest adjusted gross income actually paid federal income taxes –their so-called effective tax rate — fell to about 18 percent in 2008 from almost 30 percent in 1995, IRS data show. That’s the tip of the iceberg, since much of their wealth never converts into income on a tax return, McCaffery said.
In the McCombs case, the billionaire entered into transactions known as variable prepaid forward contracts. He received about $259 million for lending an investment bank his Clear Channel shares with a promise to deliver the stock for good a few years later. The arrangement enabled McCombs to defer paying capital gains tax because he hadn’t sold his shares, lawyers for the billionaire said. The IRS deemed the transaction a sale since the bank paid McCombs cash and got the use of his stock almost immediately.
The article goes on to detail several billionaires who utilized this complex tax avoidance scheme to bring in hundreds of millions of dollars, tax-free. I’m just, like, so shocked that these assholes haven’t created thousands of jobs with their personal megamillions. Amazing.
One of these people, Arthur M. Winn, recently pled guilty to making illegal campaign donations:
The developer behind the failed Columbus Center project in Boston has agreed to plead guilty to funneling illegal campaign contributions to Massachusetts politicians as part of a seven-year scheme to win favorable political treatment for the massive development, prosecutors say.
Prosecutors alleged that Winn orchestrated a scheme in which he and one of his corporate affiliates, Winn Columbus Center Limited Partnership, funneled more than $150,000 in illegal donations to federal, state, and city politicians between 2002 and 2009 in the hope of getting their backing for public funds for the $800 million project.
Pigs at the trough, folks. This is how plutocrats work. They avoid paying their taxes and thumb their nose at campaign laws so they can buy politicians and get taxpayer money for their personal projects.
But yeah, let’s tell Occupy protesters to get a job and take a bath. That’s where the problem is.
This is the kind of shit that has people pissed off.
Note that one of the megabazillionaires
ripping off America using these schemes to dodge his taxes is Phillip Anschutz, the right-wing financier behind The Discovery Institute and American Petroleum Institute. See, this is how it works: they dodge paying their taxes and instead of creating jobs with their big windfall (isn’t that what the right wingers tell us they are? Job creators?) they fund conservative talking point factories spreading propaganda denying evolution, climate change, and the like.