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Immoral Tax Avoidance? No Such Thing.

Tim Fernholz recounts his thoughts on Google's now-famous tax avoidance : Seriously, though, after reading this article about Google's evasion of $3.1 billion in tax obligations through legal loopholes, I got into a Twitter argument with Townhall.com's Kevin Glass about whether this...

It May Be Legal, But It Ain't Always Right

Tax avoidance is legal and tax evasion is not. Simple distinction, but not always relevant, at least not in politics. Consider the recent burst of outrage over corporate tax avoidance generally and General Electric's tax bill in particular. In some years, GE's tax schemes might have escaped public...

A Grown-Up Conversation About Corporate Tax

Nothing is more fun for liberals than to catch a big multinational abusing U.S. tax laws. Google, Cisco, General Electric, and Apple -- to name a few -- now have public relations problems because the press has put a spotlight on their use of offshore tax havens. The tax dodging is disgraceful. The worst...

Tax Considerations for Taxpayers Applying the Economic Substance Doctrine

The Background In 2010, Congress codified the economic substance doctrine, but left numerous unanswered questions for taxpayers on how to apply the doctrine. Along with codifying the economic substance doctrine, Congress also enacted strict liability penalties [ IRC § 6662(b)(6) (20 percent strict...

Apple Sidesteps Taxes – What’s Wrong With That?

A front-page article in Sunday's New York Times (" How Apple Sidesteps Billions in Taxes ") is getting quite the buzz. A couple of things about the article. While the Times piece recognizes that there is nothing illegal about the techniques that Apple uses to minimize its taxes, it insinuates...

Tax Mitigation-Avoidance-Evasion

"Tax avoidance involves arrangement of a transaction in order to obtain a tax advantage, benefit, or reduction in a manner unintended by the tax law. It is an unacceptable manipulation of the law which is unlike legitimate tax mitigation. Mitigation involves use of the tax law to achieve anticipated...

Taxation & Morality: Odd Bedfellows

There is a public opinion poll for just about everything these days. I recently stumbled across a U.K. poll on corporate taxes and morality. Here we have two subjects that don't necessarily seem connected ... or are they? In the survey 66% of respondents said tax avoidance was immoral. The poll was...