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Tue Jan 24, 2012, 05:26 PM

As Romney Releases Tax Returns, Fmr Senate Investigator Says: We’ve Got To Start Taxing Corporations

From Democracy Now

January 24, 2012

During the GOP primary, Mitt Romney has come under fierce attack for parking millions of dollars of his personal wealth in investment funds set up in the Cayman Islands, a notorious Caribbean tax haven. We speak with Tax Justice Network USA chair Jack Blum, a former top congressional investigator of financial crimes, who says tax evasion could seriously cripple the already struggling economy. Blum appears in "We’re Not Broke," a documentary that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. The film examines widespread corporate tax evasion in the United States and the increasing role of offshore tax havens. "Has cheated? No," Blum says. "What he’s done is take full advantage of a system that has been structured the way it is because of political influence and a tremendous amount of lobbying money on Capitol Hill... We must not only rewrite the Internal Revenue Code, but we must get a fair contribution from the very wealthy and from corporations, and that is the only way to balance the budget."

SNIP* Well, today we’re turning to a former top congressional investigator of financial crimes, who says tax evasion could seriously cripple the already struggling economy. Jack Blum appears in We’re Not Broke, a documentary that has premiered here at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah. The film examines widespread corporate tax evasion in the U.S. and the increasing role of offshore tax havens. Jack Blum is a lawyer and chair of Tax Justice Network USA.

Jack, welcome to Democracy Now! OK, the debate is heating up, primarily between Newt Gingrich now and Mitt Romney. Talk about Mitt Romney and his private equity firm Bain Capital.

JACK BLUM: Bain Capital is a firm that specializes in taking over other companies and supposedly putting them on track to success and then selling the companies off. But this industry is built on tax dodgers of various kinds. So, typically, the money that’s used is borrowed money, and the borrowings are secured by the company that they’re buying. Now, what this does is create tremendous tax deductions for interest payments on the loan. The fascinating thing is that the partnerships that do this are also offshore partnerships. They’re set up in the Cayman Islands.

in full: http://www.democracynow.org/2012/1/24/as_romney_releases_tax_returns

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Reply As Romney Releases Tax Returns, Fmr Senate Investigator Says: We’ve Got To Start Taxing Corporations (Original post)
Jefferson23 Jan 2012 OP
sad sally Jan 2012 #1
Jefferson23 Jan 2012 #3
City Lights Jan 2012 #2

Response to Jefferson23 (Original post)

Tue Jan 24, 2012, 05:38 PM

1. How can it be changed with foxes in the hen house?

AMY GOODMAN: Where is Obama when it comes to leadership on this issue?

JACK BLUM: When he was inaugurated and when he was campaigning, he said he’d straighten up the mess that the tax code is. He didn’t do it. And he’s surrounded by a group of advisers who don’t want to tackle these problems, I think, because many of them come out of the very community and the very law firms that have created the problem. Now, in the film, we show him bringing many of the corporate leaders, who are the heads of companies that don’t pay any tax, in to a circle of people who are advising him on the economy. Well, I can assure you they’re not telling him that the way to solve the economic problems is to collect tax from their companies.

AMY GOODMAN: Doesn’t this also have to do with campaign contributions? He says he’s going—they’re going to raise a billion dollars. That’s the Democrats alone. So the Republicans express the philosophy outright. The Democrats rely on the same amounts of money from the corporations that they fear they won’t get.

JACK BLUM: OK, the congressional Democrats do. I should say, to his credit, Obama has said he won’t take contributions from lobbyists, and corporate contributions are prohibited. However, if you look at the congressional side, that’s a whole different story. But really, the reason for bringing these people in as advisers is, at first, to neutralize their desire to pour money to the other side, but then also to give the appearance of being business-friendly and to make sure that the congressional Democrats continue to get the funding they need to get elected. And when we’re running billion-dollar campaigns on all sides, this is pretty amazing stuff.

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Response to sad sally (Reply #1)

Tue Jan 24, 2012, 05:54 PM

3. I think we would agree this is one reason we are occupying the status quo as best we can. n/t

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Response to Jefferson23 (Original post)

Tue Jan 24, 2012, 05:41 PM

2. Since corporations are people, they should be taxed like people.

Too bad the 1% will never agree to it.

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