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[New York Times] How Apple Sidesteps Billions in Taxes - Page 14

post #131 of 199
This is not politics. The president said that Steve Jobs should be a roll model to the American people during this years state of the union address. I guess it does kinda make sense. Americans have been avoiding taxes since 1786.
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post #132 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by john55576 View Post

OMG this thread... I'm more pissed off that the our Government won't stop the use of China's labor in favor of higher standards. Or at least create an import tax that equalizes the effective cost of living ratio. Or can anyone here with a BS in CS work for $300 month and meet ends?

Because if we do the assembly here, the cost will be driven up substantially. There is a reason why assembly was done on China, due to close proximity to needed resources, no union, low minimum wages, etc.
Quote:
The wealthy become successful by riding on the backs of the working class. Steve Jobs never worked a day in a Foxconn factory. Wealth is gained by exploiting their labour. It has nothing to do with hard work or merit and everything to do with luck and privilege.

60% is the absolute maximum and fits perfectly within the Laffer curve. There is no "logical evolution to 100%", that's a silly strawman. 60% of 26 billion dollars is perfectly reasonable.

And finally, merely hiking taxes isn't a solution. The entire political system is broken beyond repair and needs to be thrown out by force.

Founders behind giants like HP, Microsoft, etc certainly have gone through worker class routine in their early days. You do realize that while 60% is the maximum on Laffer curve, only few millionaires are willingly to pay such taxes. Not only does it drive a lot of corporations away (so lots of unemployment), it presents itself as a barrier to market entry. That is very little corporation wants to do business in US because the taxes is so big upfront. Those two reasons will cause the market to stop growing.

Political system is broken I agree with you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shmerrick View Post

This is not politics. The president said that Steve Jobs should be a roll model to the American people during this years state of the union address. I guess it does kinda make sense. Americans have been avoiding taxes since 1786.

Ironically enough, one major reason why US started independence war is because British kept passing taxes on colonies and they didn't have a say at the Parliament. US collected its first income tax at 1862, to fund the Civil War. Originally started at 3%, it now starts at 10% to 15% minimum.
Edited by trumpet-205 - 4/30/12 at 10:04am
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post #133 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malcolm View Post

The wealthy become successful by riding on the backs of the working class. Wealth is gained by exploiting their labour. It has nothing to do with hard work or merit and everything to do with luck and privilege. Steve Jobs never worked a day in a Foxconn factory.

Sorry Karl Marx, but the economy has moved on from the industrial era. Most value-added comes from services and most of the money you pay when buy apple products goes to apple and and its designers/marketers. Unskilled labor is easily replacable and relatively worthless in a quarternary, 70% service-based economy."
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malcolm View Post

60% is the absolute maximum and fits perfectly within the Laffer curve. There is no "logical evolution to 100%", that's a silly strawman. 60% of 26 billion dollars is perfectly reasonable.

Says someone who is using outdated, 19th century class-warfare rhetoric. Many working people would say anything over 50% is deeply immoral. When someone else takes more than half of what you earn, why would you work at all? Even more people would say even 30-40% is immoral, especially when a large portion is wasted in buying the votes of other people.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malcolm View Post

And finally, merely hiking taxes isn't a solution. The entire political system is broken beyond repair and needs to be thrown out by force.

People who spend their lives building things realize that to act is often to err as well. You just try your best to make a net positive after everything is said and done. Our system is flawed, but it is still built on consensus as well as checks and balances. It is the least worst of all options.
post #134 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diogenes5 View Post

Sorry Karl Marx, but the economy has moved on from the industrial era. Most value-added comes from services and most of the money you pay when buy apple products goes to apple and and its designers/marketers. Unskilled labor is easily replacable and relatively worthless in a quarternary, 70% service-based economy."

"Labour" is a very broad and general term that encompasses everything from industrial labour to service sector jobs. How did Walmart make their $17 billion net profit in 2011? Oh, yes, it was the tireless work of their CEOs and shareholders. Had nothing to do with their ~1,000,000+ associates working for far below a living wage, forbidden to form unions. thumb.gif Or the 12 year old Chinese kids working in the sweatshops from whence Walmart sources most of their dirt-cheap trinkets.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diogenes5 View Post

Says someone who is using outdated, 19th century class-warfare rhetoric. Many working people would say anything over 50% is deeply immoral. When someone else takes more than half of what you earn, why would you work at all?

Under the system that I proposed, by the time you earned enough to be taxed at a rate of 60%, you would be a billionaire, and the only work you'd be doing is climbing in and out of your Gulfstream. The vast majority of people would be taxed at a far lower rate. Again, 60% is the absolute maximum.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diogenes5 View Post

Even more people would say even 30-40% is immoral, especially when a large portion is wasted in buying the votes of other people.

Your morality is clearly flawed if your primary concern is the welfare of the rich. They exploit those beneath them for their own gain, and Americans are brainwashed from cradle to grave by their corporate overlords into thinking that this is good, acceptable and ideal.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diogenes5 View Post

People who spend their lives building things realize that to act is often to err as well. You just try your best to make a net positive after everything is said and done.

That's nice.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diogenes5 View Post

Our system is flawed, but it is still built on consensus as well as checks and balances. It is the least worst of all options.

More like, our system is flawed, has been flawed for a very long time, and consists of a very small group of powerful individuals who bribe themselves into power, behind a placebo "democracy" for appearances' sake, while the general populace is kept subservient by a steady stream of propaganda from the PR wing of the corporatocracy, aka the corporate-owned news media.
Edited by Malcolm - 4/30/12 at 8:12am
post #135 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

This is a Laffer Curve.

302

It's so simple even armchair economists can understand what it conveys.
It actually isn't all that simple, because we have next to no idea where point the "equalibrium" point is. Oh, and it should also have a nice "not representative of actual curve" disclaimer since it could look like this (or even more distorted):

175
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post #136 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xeio View Post

It actually isn't all that simple, because we have next to no idea where point the "equalibrium" point is. Oh, and it should also have a nice "not representative of actual curve" disclaimer since it could look like this (or even more distorted):
175

Oh yes a semantics argument! I love these! The graph you linked is clearly the intergral between two curves which is fundamentally different in both purpose and meaning from the general and simplistic graph I linked. No where did I state that it was THE Laffer Curve as well. I stated it was A Laffer Curve (notice the indefinite article.)

This is a chart of a linear function; not the linear function. See the difference? However, I can extrapolate some general principles from the chart and apply it to more complex linear graphs.

288
Quote:
"Labour" is a very broad and general term that encompasses everything from industrial labour to service sector jobs. How did Walmart make their $17 billion net profit in 2011? Oh, yes, it was the tireless work of their CEOs and shareholders. Had nothing to do with their ~1,000,000+ associates working for far below a living wage, forbidden to form unions. Or the 12 year old Chinese kids working in the sweatshops from whence Walmart sources most of their dirt-cheap trinkets.

A living wage in what country? in what state? in what county? in what town? Are you factoring in profit sharing? health benefits? retirement plans?

There are so many economic qualifiers that are needed to make a claim of that nature that it borders on inane. Even from a completely biased anti-Walmart source, the average income wage for a Walmart employee in the USA is $11.75. Compare this to the national average of $12.04. Again, this is from an extremely biased source. Even by their estimation Walmart pays 3% less than the average. This, in your mind, constitutes a statistically significant figure (let alone "far below")?

Do you also believe the carhop who brings you food at Sonic should be pulling down $25k a year? the person who handles the register at McDonald's? It is not the business's responsibility to compensate for a person's lack of marketable skills or ambition in a highly competitive labor market.
Quote:
Under the system that I proposed, by the time you earned enough to be taxed at a rate of 60%, you would be a billionaire, and the only work you'd be doing is climbing in and out of your Gulfstream. The vast majority of people would be taxed at a far lower rate. Again, 60% is the absolute maximum.

Is there something inherently wrong with having that much money to begin with? Many of these "lazy" people with a net worth in the billions are unbelievably philanthropic with their assets. Additionally, how can 60% be the absolute maximum? Do you mean only income tax? There are other taxes that grown-ups have to pay as well such as property tax, sales tax, and soon to be VAT (the worst tax imaginable.) There is also payroll tax if you run a business. That benevolent 60% starts to look more and more oppressive.
Quote:
Your morality is clearly flawed if your primary concern is the welfare of the rich. They exploit those beneath them for their own gain, and Americans are brainwashed from cradle to grave by their corporate overlords into thinking that this is good, acceptable and ideal.

It has nothing to do with "brainwashing." How ever Huxley of you. Being wealthy does not denote immorality. You need to remove that from your rhetoric because it is a fundamental fallacy. You attempt to drum this idea of a man is a suit with a whip chanting "Work you bastards or no vittles tonight!" Adults actively applied for these jobs and are free to leave these "awful" jobs any time they wish in pursuit of better work. Stop sidestepping the very real notion of personal responsibility.

Over 80% of the 6 million "millionaires" in the USA are first generation. They invested soundly over many years in very accessible retirement plans, and retire on a tidy nest egg. This was all accomplished in spite of government involvement; not with it. They did not achieve this success "off the backs of the poor." Very few rich people, in fact, in the USA have had money thrown at them. What would be the tax bracket of these nouveau riche on your sliding scale of social engineering? A generous 40%? 25%? In your mind, taxation is to be used selectively to punish success in the spirit of fairness. Taxation's only real purpose was supposed to be to cover the costs of the government providing the services which citizens cannot individually provide. What you are championing is known as statism.
Edited by Solarin - 4/30/12 at 9:32am
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post #137 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

A living wage in what country? in what state? in what county? in what town? Are you factoring in profit sharing? health benefits? retirement plans?
There are so many economic qualifiers that are needed to make a claim of that nature that it borders on inane. Even from a completely biased anti-Walmart source, the average income wage for a Walmart employee in the USA is $11.75. Compare this to the national average of $12.04. Again, this is from an extremely biased source. Even by their estimation Walmart pays 3% less than the average. This, in your mind, constitutes a statistically significant figure (let alone "far below")?

To share a personal anecdote, I worked at Walmart for a time, and neither myself nor anyone else I knew made even close to that figure, in fact my starting pay was $6.90/hr when the minimum wage was $5.25. I live in Oklahoma. Our profit sharing bonus for 2007 was..............drumroll please.............$35. Thirty. Five. Dollars. And that included people who had worked there full time, for decades. I bet Lee Scott got his bonus though. thumb.gif

Don't even get me started on health "benefits." Walmart's benefits are a joke and you're still completely screwed if you're working there as a sole source of income trying to make ends meet (and many of my coworkers were) if you get sick. But that of course is their fault because anyone who wants to can become successful, right? rolleyes.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

Do you also believe the carhop who brings you food at Sonic should be pulling down $25k a year? the person who handles the register at McDonald's? It is not the business's responsibility to compensate for a person's lack of marketable skills or ambition in a highly competitive labor market.

Many Americans lack access to the education necessary to acquire those marketable skills. Education in this country is a privilege of the wealthy and the resulting quality of your education is largely dependent on the depth of your parent's pockets. And don't say, "Take out a loan", because this is exactly the type of debt slavery that Americans are forced into by necessity. Your argument here might hold some validity if higher education were more freely available to more people, but it isn't.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

Is there something inherently wrong with having that much money to begin with?

Not necessarily.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

Many of these "lazy" people with a net worth in the billions are unbelievably philanthropic with their assets.

It's funny how freely they are willing to give away (some) of their money when it serves the purpose of making them look generous and garnering attention, while they balk at the idea of giving the same money away in taxation which could go towards public services. (I do feel it's fair to mention that a notable exception here would be Warren Buffett.)

Oh, and charitable donations are tax write-offs.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

How can 60% be the absolute maximum? Do you mean only income tax?

In the case of the 60% figure, yes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

There are other taxes that grown-ups have to pay as well such as payroll tax, property tax, sales tax, and soon to be VAT (the worst tax imaginable.)

I'm well aware of that, I have a job myself.

Property taxes IMO should be eliminated. A piece of land is like any other possession, it just sits there. So does my computer but I don't pay taxes on that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

It has nothing to do with "brainwashing." How ever Huxley of you.

People who are brainwashed are often quite conveniently unaware of it. How ever Ayn Rand of you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

Being wealthy does not denote immorality. You need to remove that from your rhetoric because it is a fundamental fallacy.

Again, no, not necessarily.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

You attempt to drum this idea of a man is a suit with a whip chanting "Work you bastards or no vittles tonight!"

I will now quote from a poignant blog post which sums this up nicely:
Quote:
The fact is, they work you like dogs in the United States. This should come as no surprise: the United States never got away from the plantation/sweat shop labor model and any real labor movement was brutally suppressed. Unless you happen to be a member of the ownership class, your options are pretty much limited to barely surviving on service-sector wages or playing musical chairs for a spot in a cubicle (a spot that will be outsourced to India next week anyway). The very best you can hope for is to get a professional degree and then milk the system for a slice of the middle-class pie. And even those who claw their way into the middle class are but one illness or job loss away from poverty. Your jobs aren’t secure. Your company has no loyalty to you. They’ll play you off against your coworkers for as long as it suits them, then they’ll get rid of you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

Adults actively applied for these jobs and are free to leave these "awful" jobs any time they wish in pursuit of better work. Stop sidestepping the very real notion of personal responsibility.

You're kidding me, right? You should apply for a part time job at Walmart, and sit in the employee break room and talk to the other employees there. You'll learn a few things.

Personal responsiblity is all well and good but there are myriad other factors that stand in the way of achieving one's goals through no fault of your own. A person on a limited income is usually trapped in a vicious cycle. Can't afford to quit the job to look for a better job, while at the same time can't afford to attend school and/or take time off work to attend school, thus trapping them in a dead-end retail job until they either retire or the CEO decides he wants a new Lambo and cuts their hours/lays them off. You can't simply put in your two-week notice when you have dependents to support. I met many adults in their 40's and 50's in this exact situation during my time at Walmart. It was really quite eye-opening for me (and certainly ran counter to the idyllic "world is your oyster" rhetoric from my parents and people like them.)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solarin View Post

Over 80% of the 6 million "millionaires" in the USA are first generation. They invested soundly over many years in very accessible retirement plans, and retire on a tidy nest egg. This was all accomplished in spite of government involvement; not with it. They did not achieve this success "off the backs of the poor." Very few rich people, in fact, in the USA have had money thrown at them. What would be the tax bracket of these nouveau riche on your sliding scale of social engineering? A generous 40%? 25%? In your mind, taxation is to be used selectively to punish success in the spirit of fairness. Taxation's only real purpose was supposed to be to cover the costs of the government providing the services which citizens cannot individually provide. What you are championing is known as statism.

I know what statism is, and if you want to see a first hand example, open your front door and look outside. You are living in a statist corporatocracy, with the corporations essentially functioning as the state, in practice. Statism of course comes in various flavours, just like any other political/economic system. Some are good, some are not so good.
Edited by Malcolm - 4/30/12 at 10:17am
post #138 of 199
You know, all this money that Apple has and that people want taxed more heavily, was freely given to them by consumers...

My bet is that people on this forum don't actually want higher taxes, they just want an Apple tax to punish people for liking Apple.
post #139 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by ILoveHighDPI View Post

You know, all this money that Apple has and that people want taxed more heavily, was freely given to them by consumers...
My bet is that people on this forum don't actually want higher taxes, they just want an Apple tax to punish people for liking Apple.

Huh?
post #140 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by ILoveHighDPI View Post

My bet is that people on this forum don't actually want higher taxes, they just want an Apple tax to punish people for liking Apple.

I seem to be ok with this. thumb.gif
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