Wednesday, August 07, 2002

These days the administration in DC is very vocal about the evils of U.S. companies hiding their profits off-shore to avoid the paying of taxes. Big W called it "a problem" and says, "We ought to look at people who are trying to avoid U.S. taxes" (an actual full, grammatically correct sentence).

Back when W served on Harken Energy's board of directors in 1989, however, the company set up an offshore subsidiary in the Cayman Islands. Thankfully, White House spokesman Ari Fleischer has explained that it was not a scheme to hide out from the IRS. I gotta admit I was concerned for a minute there.

Citizen Works (Ralph Nader's post-election organization) made the news last week by noting that during Vice President Dick Cheney’s tenure as CEO, the number of Halliburton subsidiaries incorporated in offshore foreign tax havens rose from 9 to 44.

Meanwhile, Cheney is supportive of a heavily expanded military budget, a budget that is increasingly being picked up by ordinary taxpayers who can’t funnel their money through offshore tax havens. And a solid chunk of that military budget will go straight to Brown & Root, a Halliburton subsidiary that has a $1.8 billion contract to support U.S. troops through 2004. Despite being under federal investigation for fraud, Brown & Root is the Army's only private supplier of troop support services over the next decade, according to the Associated Press. The corporate state in action invites citizen action!

And who was that jetting around in the Enron corporate jet during the 2000 election season? Oh, hey, take a look, it's Gee Dubya!

Washington Post story - Reuters story (Yahoo! News)

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