Microsoft Evades Paying $4.5 billion in Taxes

By LUIS MIRANDA | THE REAL AGENDA | SEPTEMBER 21, 2012

In the United States, the non-payment of taxes is seen by the authorities as one of the infuriating offenses against the government. Individuals who evade taxes are labeled as criminals, even before being tried in a court of law. Those who speak against taxation without representation are equaled to crazy people or conspiracy theorists.

But when it comes to corporate taxation, the tables always turn in favor of the non payers. Corporations such as Facebook, Google, Apple and Microsoft are some of the best known offenders. These corporations are successful in evading the payment of taxes thanks to loopholes left open in tax legislation that allows them to — with a sea of legal tricks — move their profits overseas in order to avoid payment. This is the conclusion of a new U.S. Senate subcommittee report.

One of the latest cases is that of Bill Gates’ Microsoft. The technology giant avoided paying $4.5 billion in taxes between 2009 and 2011. Microsoft managed to send some $21 billion in profits abroad, which allowed the company to evade the payment of taxes that otherwise would have been collected by the American Internal Revenue Service. The billions of dollars not paid by Microsoft corresponded to taxes on the sales the company had during two complete years according to report by the Senate investigations subcommittee of the U.S. Congress.

Similar methods to avoid paying sales taxes have been used by other large corporations, reports the Huffington Post. Apple, for example, earned around $45 billion in 2011, but paid only $3 billion in taxes. That is because the company creates subsidiaries in cities known as ‘tax heavens’ where corporate taxes are 0%. Apple also manages to complete sales of digital products from foreign countries, so when the company sells a song or software, the payment is made to subsidiaries in Luxemburg, and not in the U.S..

Other companies like Google and HP also succeeded in avoiding corporate taxes in the last few years. While Apple avoided taxes on $34.5 billion between 2009 and 2011, Google dodged taxes on $24 billion. Hewlett-Packard, used what the congressional report calls a number of  revolving short-term loans with its subsidiaries to avoid paying billions of dollars in taxes since 2008. Congressman Carl Levin said HP  kept billions of dollars in cash outside of the United States — $17 billion in 2010 — that it lent to its U.S. headquarters to avoid paying taxes on that money.

As shown above, the case of Microsoft is not unique. That is what those who prepared the report believe and that is what their conclusions seem to suggest. They also examine how multinationals transferred their operations to countries where taxation is more favorable. By the way, they do it legally, which shows how weak the tax code is in the United States when it comes to holding corporations accountable for their share of the tax burden.

The opposite is true for individuals, who do not enjoy the tax loopholes that corporations like Microsoft have to send money outside of the U.S.. In fact, the U.S. government announced changes in the tax code to prevent individuals from moving their savings or investment gains abroad. Nothing was prepared to do the same on the corporate side.

The non payment of corporate tax goes around every year in the U.S. Congress, but it has been even more relevant this year due to the American need to find cash to finance its out of control government spending, which in turn ran up the deficit. In the case of these technology firms, they’ve used intellectual property rights, royalties and licensing as ways to avoid accountability.

Microsoft has said it does do anything irregular and highlighted the complex structure of the American tax system. The company also says it has been very accommodating with the congressional investigation. Senator Carl Levin, however, believes that the practices used by Microsoft are at least “questionable”.

According to the newspaper El País, the amount shuffled in the Microsoft case corresponds to about half of its sales in the U.S.. That money, says the Spanish newspaper, is often sent to other countries such as Ireland. In the United States congressional investigations and initiatives that seek to curb the non payment of corporate taxes usually end in nothing. Although both Republicans and Democrats agree that something needs to be done, they cannot agree on the way Congress should approach the closing of loopholes to avoid that companies like HP and Cisco Systems manage to get away without paying taxes in the U.S..

“At a time when difficult budget decisions are being made, while families face tax increases and spending cuts in critical public programs in  education and health, these situation is unacceptable” said Levin.

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Swine Flu Vaccine “conclusively” Causes Chronic Nervous System Disorders

The nation of Finland has now openly admitted that the swine flu vaccine “conclusively” causes narcolepsy

The Finnish government says it will pay for “lifetime medical care” for 79 children who have been irreparably damaged by the swine flu vaccine.

October 8, 2011

The nation of Finland has now openly admitted that the swine flu vaccine “conclusively” causes narcolepsy, a chronic nervous system disorder that makes people uncontrollably fall asleep. The Finnish government, in acknowledging this link, says it will pay for “lifetime medical care” for 79 children who have been irreparably damaged by the swine flu vaccine. (http://news.yahoo.com/finland-vows-…)

Narcolepsy isn’t the only side effect now admitted to be caused by swine flu vaccines: 76 of the 79 children also suffered hallucinations and “paralyzing physical collapses,” say Finnish researchers.

Remarkably, even though the link between swine flu vaccines and permanent neurological damage in children is now openly admitted by the Finnish government, there is absolutely no talk about halting the utterly unscientific ritual of injecting children with flu vaccines in the first place. Not only are flu vaccines harmful to children (as is now admitted), but flu vaccines don’t even work! A simple daily dose of vitamin D would do far more to halt influenza than any vaccine (http://www.naturalnews.com/029760_v…).

U.S. refuses to admit vaccines harm anyone

The U.S. government, of course, still refuses to admit vaccines cause any harm whatsoever. Both the government and the vaccine industry continue to push the fabricated fairy tale that “vaccines are safe and effective,” meaning they harm no one but help everyone. Yet the truth is practically the polar opposite: Vaccines harm countless millions of children each year in ways that are usually never linked to vaccines (mild mental retardation, suppressed immune function, learning disabilities, etc.). At the same time, vaccines are all but worthless at preventing infections. Even the vaccine industry’s own research shows that flu shots only work on 1 out of 100 people, meaning they’re completely useless for 99 percent of those who take them (http://www.naturalnews.com/029641_v…).

Instead of admitting the truth that vaccines cause autism, the U.S. government has conspired with vaccine manufacturers to create a Vaccine Injury Compensation Program which essentially pays “hush money” to parents of permanently harmed children to make sure they cannot bring their claims of harm to federal courts (http://www.naturalnews.com/033635_v…).

Even worse, the medical establishment — which is heavily influenced if not downright dominated by pharmaceutical interests — absolutely refuses to advocate vitamin D as a flu prevention nutrient. Vitamin D is safe, effective and affordable. It’s available without a prescription and could save literally billions of dollars in national health care costs for just pennies per day per person. So why won’t the medical establishment promote vitamin D? Precisely because it would cost the industry billions of dollars in lost profits from all the sickness and degenerative disease that is prevented by vitamin D.
Of course vaccines cause autism!

There is absolutely no question in the mind of any reasonably informed person that vaccines cause neurological damage, including (but not limited to) autism. Only the corporate-whore scientists around the world continue their charade that vaccines are not linked to autism; or that vaccines even work in the first place. Most Americans haven’t yet heard the secret interview with Merck vaccine scientist Dr. Maurice Hilleman where he openly admits vaccines carry dozens of strains of cancer-causing “stealth” viruses. Read the transcript here:

http://www.naturalnews.com/033584_D…Listen to the interview at:
http://naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=13EAA…Similarly, most people still don’t know that Dr. Jonas Salk, the celebrated “grandfather” of vaccines who is credited with creating the polio vaccine, was an unindicted medical criminal who committed heinous crimes against humanity in the name of “medical science.” (http://www.naturalnews.com/031564_J…)In fact, the whole history of vaccines and medicine has been utterly distorted by the medical establishment to paint vaccines in a glorified light of public health. But the real story is that vaccines are now — and have always been — tools for causing diseaseand promoting sickness so that the pharmaceutical industry can benefit as a result.The horrifying truth about the vaccine industry and medical establishment

Remember, this is the same industry that got caught conducting outrageous medical experiments on Guatemalan prisoners (http://www.naturalnews.com/033483_G…). These are the same people who ran Tuskegee experiments on African Americans, too (http://www.naturalnews.com/029924_m…).

Do you honestly think these same vaccine criminals would not also use innocent children for their own mass inoculation medical experiments? Remember: These are hard-core, Nazi-style criminals we’re talking about here. This is who runs the pharmaceutical industry. The former chairperson of Bayer, for example, was a convicted Nazi war criminal who was indicted and sentenced at the Nuremburg trials:

Don’t believe me? Read your history:

“Dr. Fritz ter Meer, a director of IG Farben who was directly involved in developing the nerve gas, Zyklon-B, which killed millions of Jews, was sentenced to seven years in prison but was released after four years through the intervention of Rockefeller and J.J. McCloy, then U.S. High Commissioner for Germany. An unrepentant Fritz ter Meer, guilty of genocide and crimes against humanity, returned to work in Bayer where he served as Chairman for more than 10 years, until 1961. This same ter Meer, a convicted Nazi war criminal, went on to become one of the initiators of the Codex Alimentarius Commission in 1962, an organization that was nurtured by the World Health Organization (WHO), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and latterly the World Trade Organization (WTO).” (http://www.naturalnews.com/024534_E…)

Governments know vaccines maim and kill children — that’s exactly why they push them so aggressively

You see, every world government already knows that vaccines are murder. They know vaccines kill and maim children. They know vaccines cause autism and neurological disorders. They know this and then they keep promoting vaccines anyway. Why? Because they are mass murderers who have philosophical roots in Nazi Germany and the eugenics movement. Even today’s FDA can be traced backed to eugenics and population control. Bill Gates, who promotes world vaccination, openly admits that vaccines and health care can “reduce world population by 10 to 15 percent” if they “do a good job.” (http://www.naturalnews.com/029911_v…)

Don’t believe me? Watch Bill Gates say it himself in this video:
http://www.naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=A…

Vaccines are not given to children with the “accident” that they kill some children and cause neurological disorders in others; no, they are given to children BECAUSE they cause neurological disorders, organ failure, infertility, reduced intelligence and numerous other side effects.

Today’s vaccines create tomorrow’s health care customers, you see.

Vaccines keep Big Pharma in business based on repeat profits

How else is Big Pharma supposed to ensure its future profits if the population were actually allowed to stay healthy? The whole point of vaccines is to DAMAGE HUMAN HEALTH and rake in trillions of dollars in long-term profits from all the suffering and disease caused by those vaccines.

C’mon, folks: Do you really think all these for-profit companies are trying to HELP humanity? Do you really think drug company CEOs are goody-goody humanitarians who would give up their shareholder profits and drive their own companies out of business by promoting lasting health?

Wake up, people. Wake up and smell the coffee. Drug companies think absolutely nothing of murdering Nigerian children (http://www.naturalnews.com/023654.html) or even using your own children as medical experiments as long as they make more money in the process. And as the editor of NaturalNews, having seen countless documents, tips, testimonials and other sources of information that have been given to me over the years, I can tell you with absolute certainty that the pharmaceutical industry is actively using vaccines to CAUSE degenerative disease as a way to lock in future profits from that disease.

Vaccines are a business continuity strategy used by the for-profit pharmaceutical industry

It’s just like a greasy car mechanic throwing some solvents into your gas tank so that you have to come back for engine repairs after a few hundred miles. The drug companies are willing to do anything to guarantee their profits, and that includes committing acts of genocide against the human race as long as it fattens their bottom line profits.

We are not dealing with ethical, principled human beings in the pharmaceutical industry, folks. We are dealing with criminal-minded monsters who have found a way to selfishly enrich themselves at the expense and suffering of others.

And they relish in it. They get off on watching children suffer and die from their vaccines. They get a rise out of the fact that they are pulling off this scam with such success that the sheeple of the world will actually line up at their local pharmacies and beg to be injected with the very chemical adjuvants and live viral materials that will destroy their health and turn them into lifetime medical victims.

The sick, demented medical elite who engineer all this (which includes top people at the FDA, by the way), are like modern-day vampires who suck the life out of innocent little children in order to feed their own devilish appetites for wealth and power. And watching it all happen every day in America, Finland, and everywhere else around the world is absolutely infuriating. That’s why I work so hard to expose these medical quacks for the true criminals they really are. These people who lead Big Pharma and the vaccine industry would infect your baby with cancer if it guaranteed them chemotherapy profits two decades down the road.

These people should be arrested, thrown in prison and charged with their role in these crimes against humanity. Occupy Wall Street is just one movement that’s rising up in opposition to the total scam of the fraudulent banking industry and the Federal Reserve, but we need another movement: Occupy Big Pharma where the sick, degenerate masses who have been harmed by all these vaccines and deadly pharmaceuticals march on the drug companies and arrest their CEOs for crimes against humanity.

I know that day is coming. There will be a day when the angry, diseased masses figure out the depth of the medical crimes that have been committed against them in the name of “public health…” and they will rage against the machine.

To all the vaccine company CEOs out there: Enjoy your millions right now, because there will come a day when you have to answer for how you got that money and who really had to pay the price for your financial windfall. Hundreds of millions of children are harmed today around the world because of vaccines, and that number will continue to rise with each passing year that we allow humanity to be chemically assaulted by these biological weapons known as “vaccines.”

“Unregulated Greed has Destroyed the Capitalist System”

Paul Craig Roberts

I write about major problems: the collapsing US economy, wars based on lies and deception, the police state based on “the war on terror” and other fabrications such as those orchestrated by corrupt police and prosecutors, who boost their performance reports by convicting the innocent, and so on. America is a very distressing place. The fact that so many Americans are taken in by the lies told by “their” government makes America all the more depressing.

Often, however, it is small annoyances that waste Americans’ time and drive up blood pressures. One of the worst things that ever happened to Americans was the breakup of the AT&T telephone monopoly. As Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury in 1981, if 150 percent of my time and energy had not been required to cure stagflation in the face of opposition from Wall Street and Fed Chairman Paul Volcker, I might have been able to prevent the destruction of the best communications service in the world, and one that was very inexpensive to customers.

The assistant attorney general in charge of the “anti-trust case” against AT&T called me to ask if Treasury had an interest in how the case was resolved. I went to Treasury Secretary Don Regan and told him that although my conservative and libertarian friends thought that the breakup of At&T was a great idea, their opinion was based entirely in ideology and that the practical effect would not be good for widows and orphans who had a blue chip stock to see them through life or for communications customers as deregulated communications would give the multiple communications corporations different interests than those of the customers. Under the regulated regime, AT&T was allowed a reasonable rate of return on its investment, and to stay out of trouble with regulators AT&T provided excellent and inexpensive service.

Secretary Regan reminded me of my memo to him detailing that Treasury was going to have a hard time getting President Reagan’s economic program, directed at curing the stagflation that had wrecked President Carter’s presidency, out of the Reagan administration. The budget director, David Stockman, and his chief economist, Larry Kudlow, had lined up against it following the wishes of Wall Street, and the White House Chief of Staff James Baker and his deputy Richard Darman were representatives of VP George H.W. Bush and did not want s substantial Reagan success that would again threaten the Republican Establishment’s hold over the party. Baker and Darman wanted to be sure that George H. W. Bush, and not Jack Kemp, succeeded Ronald Reagan, and that required a muted Reagan success that they could claim as theirs for moderating an “extremist” program.

I told Secretary Regan that if I had another deputy assistant secretary, I could reach a reasonable conclusion whether the breakup of AT&T was sensible. He replied that he was sure that was the case, but that once I had three deputies the headlines in the Washington Post and New York Times, Business Week, Newsweek, and so on, would be: “Supply-sider builds empire at Treasury.” He said it would sink me and that without me he could not get the President’s economic program out of the President’s administration. “Which do you want to do,” he asked, “save AT&T or cure stagflation?”

Curing stagflation gave America twenty more years. Ironically, the good times started to erode when Reagan’s other goal was accomplished and the Soviet Union dissolved in 1990. “The end of history” resulted in India and China opening their labor markets to American capitalists, who began producing offshore with foreign labor the products that they sold to Americans. The labor costs savings pushed up corporate profits, shareholders’ returns, and managerial bonuses. But it deprived Americans of middle class incomes and wrecked the balance of trade. The US income distribution and the trade deficit worsened.

Many progressives blame the worsening income distribution on the Reagan tax rate reductions, but the real cause is the offshoring of manufacturing, industrial, and professional service jobs, such as software engineering.

None of us in the Reagan administration foresaw jobs offshoring as the consequence of Soviet collapse. We had no idea that by bringing down the Soviet Union we would be bringing down America. During the Reagan years India was socialist and would not allow foreign corporations, had they been interested, to touch their labor force. China was communist and no foreign capital could enter the country.

However, once the Soviet Union was gone from the earth, the remaining socialist and communist regimes decided to go with the winners. They opened to Western corporations and sucked jobs out of the developed West.

But this is a different story. To get back to deregulation, nothing has worked for the consumer since deregulation. Deregulation permitted corporations to impose their costs of operation on customers without having to send them a bill. For example, corporations use voice recognition technology to keep customers from salaried customer representatives. I remember when a customer with a problem could call a utility company or bank and have the problem immediately corrected.

No more. There was an error in my phone bill today, which I had corrected without result on two previous occasions. As everyone knows by now, it takes 10-15 minutes, usually, to get a live person who can actually fix the problem. After listening to sales pitches for 12 minutes, I got a live person. Once the problem was understood, it was pronounced to be an upper level problem out of his hands. I waited another 10 minutes while he tried to reach a superior who had the code to fix the problem that the phone company had produced in my account. The entire time I listened to product advertisements.

How many times has this happened to you?

Whoever invented these artificial voice capabilities is the enemy of mankind. Whomever a customer calls–utilities, credit card companies, banks, whatever, the customer gets a voice machine. Some voice machines never tell the customer how to get a live person who can, on occasion, actually fix the problem.

In my opinion, the strategy behind the endless delays is to cause the customers to give up, slam the telephone down and play the higher incorrect bill as it is cheaper in time and frustration to correcting the problem and being billed in the correct amount. These ripoffs of the customer are produced by Wall Street pressures for higher earnings.

The frustrations, of course, multiply when one reaches an offshored service somewhere in the Third World. The incentive is to hang up and to pay the excessive bill so that phone, internet, or credit card services are not cut off

Had Don Regan and I known that the high speed Internet was in our future and that American corporations would use it to destroy the jobs traditionally filled by US university graduates, possibly we would have decided to save the regulated telephone monopoly and to deliver the economy over to stagflation.

The reason is that sooner or later something would have been done about stagflation, but nothing whatsoever has been done about offshoring. Saving the economy from offshoring would have been a greater achievement than saving the economy from stagflation. However, in my time stagflation, not offshoring, was the problem.

I regret that I did not have a crystal ball.

Deregulation proponents will say that the breakup of AT&T gave us cell phones and broadband, as if foreign regulated communication companies and state monopolies do not provide cell phone service or high speed Internet connections. I can remember attending corporate board meetings years ago at which the European members had digital cell phones with which they could call most anywhere on earth, while we Americans with our analogue cell phones could hardly connect down the street.

What deregulation did was to permit Wall Street to push the deregulated industries– phone service, airlines, trucking, and later Wall Street itself– to focus on profits and not on service. Profits were increased by curtailing service, by pushing up prices and by Wall Street creating fraudulent financial instruments, which the banksters used America’s reputation to market to the gullible at home and abroad.

Consider air travel. Admit it, if you are my age you hate it. The deterioration in service over my lifetime is phenomenal. Studies in favor of airline deregulation focused on short flights between A and B and concluded that small airlines serving high density areas were more efficient because they were not regulated. What was left out of the analysis is that regulated airlines served low density areas and permitted free stopovers. For example, if one was flying from the US to Athens, Greece, the traveler could stopover in London, Paris, and Rome without additional charges. Moreover, passengers were fed hot meals even in tourist class. In those halcyon days, it was even possible to travel more comfortably in tourist class than in first class, because flights were not scheduled in keeping with full capacity. Several rows of seats might be unoccupied. It was possible to push up the arm rests on three or four center aisle seats, lay down and go to sleep.

Perhaps the best benefit of regulated air travel for passengers was that airlines had spare airliners. If one airplane had mechanical problems that could not be fixed within a reasonable time, a standby airliner was rolled out to enable passengers to meet their connections and designations. With deregulation, customer service is not important. The bottom line has eliminated spare airliners.

With deregulated airlines, Wall Street calls the tune. If your flight has a mechanical problem, you are stuck where you are unless you have some sort of privileged status that can bump passengers from later fully booked flights. “Studies” that focus only on discounted ticket price omit major costs of deregulation and thereby wrongly conclude that deregulation has benefited the consumer.

When trucking was regulated, truckers would stop to provide roadside assistant to stranded travelers. Today, with deregulated trucking, every minute counts toward the bottom line. Not only do truckers no longer stop to aid stranded travelers, they travel at excessive speeds that endanger automobile drivers. Trucks have expanded in size, weight and speed. Trucks raise the stress level on interstate highway drivers and destroy, at taxpayers expense, the roads on which they travel.

Conservatives and especially libertarians romanticize “free market unregulated capitalism.” They regard it as the best of all economic orders. However, with deregulated capitalism, every decision is a bottom-line decision that screws everyone except the shareholders and management.

In America today there is no longer a connection between profits and the welfare of the people. Unregulated greed has destroyed the capitalist system, which now distributes excessive rewards to the few at the expense of the many.

If Marx and Lenin were alive today, the extraordinary greed with which Wall Street has infected capitalism would provide Marx and Lenin with a better case than they had in the 19th and early 20th centuries.