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Ah but I gave you plenty of reasons to. So that's fine; you can like it, but choose not to.
On the general topic, I noticed this interesting piece in the NYT, about how a bunch of corporations are proposing a "repatriation holiday," which makes it possible for them to bring money to the US, no strings attached, at a corporate rate of 5.25% rather than 35%.
But that’s not how it worked last time. Congress and the Bush administration offered companies a similar tax incentive, in 2005, in hopes of spurring domestic hiring and investment, and 800 took advantage.
Though the tax break lured them into bringing $312 billion back to the United States, 92 percent of that money was returned to shareholders in the form of dividends and stock buybacks, according to a study by the nonpartisan National Bureau of Economic Research.
So, two points:
1) Companies are trying to leverage the fact that we'd rather have a little income than none, and basically say, fine, we'll park that cash overseas if we have to ever pay taxes. Give us a tax holiday, that we may lift thy economic indicators by paying shareholders!
2) Such companies could simply be selectively incentivized. Don't tell me about how many jobs would theoretically come from the money in the pocket of the wealthy investor, tell me how many jobs you created. Show me the bigger number on the payroll, not in the dividends, in the form of workers hired. Then you get your tax holiday on that chunk, and not 5.25%, but 20%, instead of 35. What are these guys, high?
3) To your point, BSR: revenues absolutely are too low. By taking 20% now instead of 35% later, when you've pestered these deadbeats into paying their share, you could argue that there's a 15% delta on that revenue. I think it's pretty clear they intend to simply not pay unless they get to dictate the tax rate.
It'd be interesting to contemplate just why they intend to offer to pay 1/7th of what they owe. My guess is that with the euro-zone shakier than the US, there's interest in moving the money home, to whatever destination, rather than invest there... and now they want a gold star for doing it.
To pay massive bonuses to higher-ups, and big dividends to shareholders? No. But sure, give them a partial break to the extent you think you're not going to see the money otherwise -- but condition it on hiring in the US.
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Share of Total Before-Tax Income and Total Federal Tax Liabilities, 2007
Higher-income groups earn a disproportionate share of pretax income and pay a disproportionate share of federal taxes. In 2007, the highest quintile earned 55.9 percent of pretax income and paid 68.9 percent of federal taxes. In all other quintiles, the share of federal taxes was less than the income share. The bottom quintile earned 4.0 percent of income and paid 0.8 percent of taxes, and the middle quintile earned 13.1 percent of income and paid 9.2 percent of taxes.