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Comment Re:This is the problem with corporate income tax. (Score 1) 448

Ok, I am not a tax specialist, but isn't corporate tax applied to profit?

But those profits still enrich the company. Which means the value of the shares go up and shareholders pay capital gains taxes. No matter how you look at it, corporate income tax is double taxation.

remember the court battle in which the E.U. argued that Apple owed more taxes to the Irish government, despite the fact that the Irish government didn't even want those revenues? This is the kind of absurdity that results from corporate taxes.

Not absurd at all. Ireland tried to do something E.U. membership explicitly forbids. Whether they "wanted" these taxes from Apple is completely irrelevant.

Wow. If you don't see the absurdity in a company being forced to pay taxes to a government that doesn't want them, then it will probably be very hard to convince you. At the very least, it turns the idea of taxes entirely on its head. Taxes are supposed to be a means of collecting revenue so a government can function. According to EU logic, taxes are about some kind of competition between countries with minimum rates set so no country is too competitive. This is such a distortion of what taxes are supposed to be that it's no surprise the EU is breaking up. I say good riddance to them!

Comment This is the problem with corporate income tax. (Score 4, Interesting) 448

This is a basic problem with corporate income tax: everyone in the world feels they are entitled to their "fair share". Corporate tax itself is a kind of double taxation: a corporation is made up of people who pay income tax. In addition, there is sales tax paid on all goods sold in a given country. I imagine a great deal of sales tax has been paid on Apple products in New Zealand, money the government wouldn't have if Apple didn't sell products there.

The problem with corporate income tax is that it is always possible for a mutlinational corporation to shift its profits to whichever country offers the lowest tax rate, unfairly enriching that one country. The best solution is probably to get rid of corporate income tax altogether, and make up the difference with sales taxes. (After all, the cost of corporate taxes are passed along to the consumers anyway.) This way, there's no arguing about who is entitled to the tax money: it's paid by the consumer wherever the sale takes place. This isn't the first time corporate taxes have caused problems: remember the court battle in which the E.U. argued that Apple owed more taxes to the Irish government, despite the fact that the Irish government didn't even want those revenues? This is the kind of absurdity that results from corporate taxes.

Comment Re:Does DuckDuckGo have something similar? (Score 1) 429

Not that I know of. I suspect Google's been disappearing unpleasant facts on their News product for a while now.

"The holocaust never happened" is not an unpleasant fact - it's an out-and-out lie.

"The earth is flat" is also an out-and-out lie, but search engines won't delist my pages if I make that assertion, nor will I be subject to prosecution in any nation for saying so.

Comment Re:Obviously this requires new legislation (Score 1) 102

Look at what would happen if you shot an American on American soil from Canada or Mexico.

The key word in the above sentence is "you". The basis on which the judge dismissed this claim is the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, which immunizes foreign governments from suits by Americans in U.S. courts except in cases where the complete tort occurred on U.S. soil. The key word there is governments. Private citizens can still be sued, so I don't recommend you personally shoot someone across the border unless you are doing so as a government agent. As other posters have pointed out, this kind of immunity is necessary to protect, for example, drone operators who take out terrorism suspects on foreign soil.

Comment Re: What was the basis of the suit? (Score 1) 113

The summary also says (emphasis added):

Customers' email addresses and usage data were transmitted to the company's Canadian servers, the lawsuit alleges.

/sarcasm Isn't international law fun?

I'm aware of that, but the post I was responding to was talking about a Canadian law. Last time I checked, you can't bring suit in a U.S. federal court over a Canadian law.

Comment Re:Oh thats right (Score 1) 305

We Germans had a bad time with the nazis

Umm, I think the countries invaded by Germany, such as Poland and Netherlands, etc., had an even WORSE time with the Nazis!

and decided to do something about it.

Actually, it was the allies, British, Amerericans, etc., that did something about it! Some of the earliest hate speech laws ever passed were in Germany during the Weimar Republic and they were used by Nazi's to suppress dissent. Frankly, I find it shocking that a country that lived under such an oppressive regime as the Nazi's would continue with these sorts of laws.

Comment Re:This is a wise move (Score 1) 305

For various reasons including avoiding US taxes and generating localized ad revenue directly, Facebook does have holdings in various countries including Germany. Thus they are (partially) a German company and thus have to adhere to local laws. Facebook could easily avoid this by repatriating all it's holdings and income to the US, whether that is good for the US, Facebook or German economies is an entirely different question.

Why mix taxes into this issue? There are many countries that offer much more competitive tax rates than the U.S. but don't have the draconian hate speech laws that Germany has. Perhaps it would make more sense to move operations there.

Comment Re:Who owns the servers? (Score 1) 67

Shouldn't it depend on who owns the servers? If the overseas servers are owned by a branch of Google incorporated in the US, then serve the warrant against the US corporation. If the servers are owned by a branch of Google incorporated in a foreign nation then the FBI should go through Interpol to obtain a warrant in the jurisdiction in which the servers/corporation are located.

Really? Suppose you are an American living in the U.S. but you own a vacation home in Tuscany. Should a judge in the U.S. have the authority to issue a warrant that allows U.S. police to raid your Tuscany home?

Comment Re:Why do you believe that? (Score 2) 456

SMS is not free to all people, it is heavily pwnt by the bandwidth providers.

Not only that, it cuts out people using a computer or tablet instead of a phone. Yes, you can send SMS's from computers, but it's very difficult to receive them unless you're using a phone. An ideal messaging system would work equally well on a computer, tablet, or phone, and it should be Internet based so there's no chance you'll be charged extra fees by your provider if you use it out of your home country, for instance.

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