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Comment Re:Taxes = theft (Score 1) 579

The widening gap in wealth has been about the top 0.5% vs everyone for a while now. Like I said, about ~5 million in net worth (liquid) seems to be where the cut-off is. After that, your effective tax rate takes a steep dive and it's a lot easier to make way more money than if you were simply someone who earns a high salary.

Comment Re:HQ Redo (Score 1, Insightful) 579

I don't buy that. If companies had room to raise prices, they would've raised prices already. There isn't some level of profitability where they go "well, that's enough guys".

If taxes were higher, all a company would do is make less money (or close up shop because they're not making enough money to justify the trouble). By definition they were already pricing their product at what the consumers were willing to spend. And they were paying their employees as little as those employees were willing to make.

And since taxes are only on profit and not revenue, no business would lose money with higher taxes. Only make less. Now, whether it's a good strategy to try to tax corporate profits....that's a separate question.

Comment Re:"Spirit of the Law" is BS (Score 3, Insightful) 579

There are plenty of cases where "spirit of the law" comes into play. That's why we have courts and justices interpreting laws. But tax law, in general, is pretty open-and-close. However, in this case, there is some interpretation to be had. Including whether or not Apple's tax advantage was available to any other company.

Comment Re:Lying is not "fair and square" (Score 1) 579

If you consider the Irish tax authorities giving a written compliance ruling "lying", sure. That's what the entire EU case is based on. The Irish tax authority blessed Apple's internal allocation of profits in a 1991 and 2007 ruling. The EU claims this is anti-competitive as no other company was blessed to do this (whether any other company tried, who knows).

Comment Re:Next the gov't decides YOU have too much money. (Score 4, Interesting) 579

The laws have already been changed going forward. These types of tax evasions in Ireland, at least, are closed to new companies and existing agreements will expire in 2020.

This is actually a case of anti-competition. The EU is asserting that only Apple received the type of tax ruling that allowed it to hide profits behind a mysterious "head office" that wasn't taxed in Ireland.

It may be true that no other company had done this. But I don't know whether that can qualify as anti-competitiveness since they'd have to show other companies being denied such a blessing.

Comment Re:Taxes = theft (Score 4, Interesting) 579

How much of the current government's spending do you think are on those "unreasonable" things? I see strawman argument against things like the FCC (what business is of the government to regulate the airwaves?), FDA (safe food? Privatize that!), EPA (clean air?! pfff) and other such "things that aren't in the constitution".

Usually with the argument that said things, if abolished, would lower taxes. But have you actually looked at the FY2015 federal budget? If you got rid of everything except Defense and disability (FICA/Medicare is its own tax, so I guess you can argue for getting rid of those), you'd still basically have the same budget. Those "not in the constitution" things are in the noise margin in terms of spending.

Now, I could be persuaded to re-think FICA/Medicare.

Comment Re:So what was the prior feature? (Score 1) 160

Current cars allow you to take your hands off the wheels for way longer than a minute. You may not live that long depending on the road you're driving but it's an option.

I fail to see how it's somehow required that an assist feature also make you do something a car without the assist feature doesn't make you do.

Comment Re:The EU needs money desperately (Score 1) 564

The Irish government is breaking EU guidance. I'm not sure what legal powers and/or consequences the EU has about that but one of the principles of such guidance is to prevent member states from racing to the bottom with their tax laws and thus giving away bargaining power.

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