Thursday, December 9, 2010

Watch the Video: "There Is a War Going On"


Posted by: Noël Jones


A speech from the Senate floor from Senator Bernie Sanders (I) of Vermont.


Comments?


And as another interesting reference for this debate, this New York Times article by David Jolly reports that when Iceland's economy collapsed (preceding our collapse) they dared to let their big banks fail, and they are now successfully coming out of their recession.

11 comments:

Sandra said...

Noel,Thank you for the excellent video.Great show of what is and has been going on in our country and almost makes me want to move to Kansas. Great Wake up call from the gentleman from Kentucky.

noel jones said...

Thanks for posting, Sandra. It's just so nice to hear a politician that isn't spinning a bunch of mumbo-jumbo and is just calling it like it is! I love Independents.

If you want to get really mad, go see Inside Job--the new documentary narrated by Matt Damon on all the key players on Wall Street who got rich driving this economy into collapse--a few of whom unfortunately were then hired to work in our current administration...among them, Geitner and Bernanke...

noel jones said...

he spoke for over 8 1/2 hours today!

Wayne said...

I have a question that I'm asking in all sincerity... does anyone fact check some of the claims made on speeches like this?

I mean on one hand I hear that Exxon paid no taxes last year. Elsewhere I hear they paid more in taxes than they made profit.

I read that the USA has the 2nd highest corporate tax rate in the world... then elsewhere I read that they pay nothing!

I'm sure the answer is in how you play with the figures... like Mark Twain said "Figures don't lie, but liars figure".

noel jones said...

Wayne--good question--if anyone has a link by which we can verify this, please post.

I have heard that big energy companies actually get SUBSIDIES our government, including the natural gas companies that are contaminating PA drinking water--I'm going to try to hunt down some concrete percentages on this...

noel jones said...

I found this excerpt on Wikipedia's site on "subsidies to energy producers":

"Research by the Environmental Law Institute [8]showed that from 2002 to 2008, the U.S. government provided about $72 billion in fossil fuel subsidies compared to $29 billion for renewables. Note that a big chunk of those renewable subsidies went toward the increasingly dubious investment in ethanol.) Most of the largest subsidies to fossil fuels were written into the U.S. Tax Code as permanent provisions. By comparison, many subsidies for renewables are time-limited initiatives implemented through energy bills, with expiration dates that limit their usefulness to the renewables industry. [9]"

Stil look for tax info on Exxon...if anyone else finds it, please post!

noel jones said...

Wayne--Below is pasted text from a Think Progress article I found that sums it up pretty well--and even if this site might lean more liberal, they are getting their info from this link from Forbes magazine entitled, "What Top U.S. Companies Pay in Taxes," which is conservative:

http://www.forbes.com/2010/04/01/ge-exxon-walmart-business-washington-corporate-taxes_2.html

'Last week, Forbes magazine published what the top U.S. corporations paid in taxes last year. “Most egregious,” Forbes notes, is General Electric, which “generated $10.3 billion in pretax income, but ended up owing nothing to Uncle Sam. In fact, it recorded a tax benefit of $1.1 billion.” Big Oil giant Exxon Mobil, which last year reported a record $45.2 billion profit, paid the most taxes of any corporation, but none of it went to the IRS:

Exxon tries to limit the tax pain with the help of 20 wholly owned subsidiaries domiciled in the Bahamas, Bermuda and the Cayman Islands that (legally) shelter the cash flow from operations in the likes of Angola, Azerbaijan and Abu Dhabi. No wonder that of $15 billion in income taxes last year, Exxon paid none of it to Uncle Sam, and has tens of billions in earnings permanently reinvested overseas.

Mother Jones’ Adam Weinstein notes that, despite benefiting from corporate welfare in the U.S., Exxon complains about paying high taxes, claiming that it threatens energy innovation research. Pat Garofalo at the Wonk Room notes that big corporations’ tax shelter practices similar to Exxon’s shift a $100 billion annual tax burden onto U.S. taxpayers. In fact, in 2008, the Government Accountability Office found that “two out of every three United States corporations paid no federal income taxes from 1998 through 2005.”'

Wayne said...

Well, to play "devils advocate" one could say that a 40% corporate tax rate would naturally drive taxpaying entities to search out less confiscatory climes.

Also, the product, gasoline, is taxed at the pump approx. 19% Federally and at an even higher rate by state governments. This is probably how some claim that the profit is less than the tax.

Now, how do you get corporations back to the USA and out of the offshore shelters? I don't know how that's done and I'd worry that a fix would be another layer of regulation that would have more unintended, unforeseen consequences.

Corporate welfare, subsidies, etc, are obscene. I don't know anyone who would be in favor of them.

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