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Earlier today, the U.S. House of Representatives’ Ways and Means Committee held a hearing on “tax reform and the U.S. manufacturing sector.” With no apparent irony, the Committee invited Susan Ford, a senior official from champion corporate tax-avoider Corning, Inc., to testify on how Congress ought to make the U.S. tax code more friendly for manufacturing.
Ford raised eyebrows with her claim that in 2011, Corning paid a U.S. tax rate of 36 percent and a foreign tax rate of 17 percent.
It’s unclear how Ms. Ford comes up with a 36 percent rate, but clearly one thing she’s doing is counting Corning’s “deferred” U.S. taxes (taxes not yet paid) as well as “current” taxes (U.S. taxes actually paid in 2011). Of course, those “deferred” taxes may eventually be paid. If and when they are paid, they will be included in Corning’s “current” taxes in the year(s) they are paid.
But current taxes are what Corning actually pays each year, and Corning has amassed an impressive record of paying nothing, or less than nothing, in current U.S. taxes. CTJ and ITEP’s November 2011 corporate tax avoidance report found that between 2008 and 2010, Corning didn’t pay a dime in federal corporate income taxes, actually receiving a $4 million refund to add to its $1.9 billion in U.S. profits during this period. And a more recent CTJ report found that in 2011, Corning earned almost $1 billion in U.S. pretax income, and once again didn’t pay a dime in federal income tax. These data paint a dramatically different picture from the “36 percent” claim made by Corning before Congress today.
Lets call it what it is. They paid the mafia bosses protection money. Sorry this post isn't longer but.......That's all I got to say about that.
Let’s remember that Corning also spent $2.8 million on lobbying during the 2008-10 period they spent enjoying a tax-free ride from the federal government. There are companies across the country paying their fair share in taxes and still making enough to grow their business and please their shareholders. Those are the kinds of companies Congress should be hearing from.