“These individual CEOs are being rewarded for presiding over companies that dodge taxes.” — Chuck Collins, study co-author and a senior scholar at the Institute of Policy Studies.
The Washington Post examines the laughable, Republican argument that taxes must be lowered on U.S. corporations:
Of last year’s 100 highest-paid corporate executives in the United States, 25 earned more in pay than their company recorded as a tax expense in 2010.
Those 25 firms reported average global profits of $1.9 billion. Among the 25 were Verizon, Bank of New York Mellon, General Electric, Boeing and eBay.
[...] Eighteen of the 25 firms last year operated subsidiaries in countries that the U.S. Government Accountability Office and other groups have identified as tax havens, one of the report’s authors said.
For example, Bank of New York Mellon paid its chief executive Robert Kelly $19.4 million last year, while the company got $670 million in what amounted to a tax refund, according to the report. The company has 10 subsidiaries in foreign countries, the report said.
[...] Verizon, for instance, saw the equivalent of a $705 million refund in 2010 because it deferred paying taxes on the bulk of its income to future years. The company’s total tax bill from 2010 was about $2.5 billion. The delay in tax payments allowed the firm to make investments in the nation’s technology infrastructure, a company official said.
[...] Among its other findings, the institute found that the gap between chief executive compensation and average U.S. worker pay rose from a ratio of 263-to-1 in 2009 to 325-to-1 last year.
Read that last sentence again. Does anyone really believe that CEOs worked an average of 325 times harder than the rank-and-file employees of ANY company?
This year, Verizon wanted to cut healthcare benefits and freeze pensions for its employees — causing the union workers to strike — even with tax refunds and deferments and, undoubtedly, huge executive bonuses to Verizon’s CEOs. Essentially the workers will be funding CEO bonuses with cuts to their own benefits. And ultimately, non-wealthy American taxpayers also contribute to these huge bonuses handed out to CEOs, because the corporations they work for are getting such huge and varied tax breaks while we plod along, paying our federal income tax, year after year.
When are corporations going to invest in the nation’s employment and middle-class? Or in the nation’s treasury? It’s not like they haven’t benefited greatly from the U.S. tax structure via loopholes, deregulation and subsidies over the past 30 years. And it’s not like these companies haven’t benefited from the hard work of U.S. labor.
IN FACT, a 2011 report by the Economic Policy Institute reveals that benefits and wages haven’t kept up with the increasing productivity of American workers, both in private and public sectors. (see article or see PDF report)
Thanks to the right-wing ideology of the GOP-Teaparty, here’s where we’re headed: “Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power.” — unknown
Happy Labor Day weekend!