It’s always amusing to watch as the elected class feigns outrage over the results of its own actions. Such was the case Tuesday during a Senate hearing over whether Apple, Inc. gamed the system to avoid paying protection money to the Federal extortion center on its hundreds of billions of dollars in profits.
Senators admitted that Apple did nothing illegal. In other words, Apple did what every corporation and almost every American “taxpayer” does every year: It used the tax code written by Congress as Congress intended and took advantage of the “loopholes” Congress created. It did so with the intent of keeping as much of its profits as possible.
Senator Rand Paul said the Senate subcommittee should “apologize” for “bullying” one of the greatest U.S. business success stories. “This problem is solely created by the awful tax code,” said Paul, who added that “Congress should be on trial.”
Indeed it should.
Corporate tax laws are written to give large corporations tax advantages for taking their business offshore because large corporations bought Congress and demanded it be so. One of President Barack Obama’s favorite businesses, GE, whose CEO Jeffrey Immelt Obama appointed as head of his Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, is one of dozens of multinational corporations that use the tax laws as written to keep what its earned — and also grease the skids for even more favorable legislation.
For its part, Apple’s products have changed the way the world communicates and does business. By using the code as written to reduce the taxes it has to pay, Apple has managed to keep the cost of high-priced products lower than it would have otherwise.
Apple is under the gun not because it used the system as designed. Apple is under the scrutiny of the Federal extortion racket because it doesn’t pay to play like other multinationals do.