Workers & Economic Inequality

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Blowing smoke on corporate taxes

TCF fellow Edward D. Kleinbard has been quoted in an article about corporate tax inversions on The Chicago Sun Times.

American corporate leaders love to complain about the nation’s high corporate tax rate, one of the highest in the world. This rate, they say, is stifling business investment and encouraging U.S. corporations to move their headquarters to other countries.

It sounds logical. But it may not be true. A scholarly look at global tax payments, coupled with an on-the-ground look at the effect of taxes on business investment, suggests that these corporate leaders not only are crying wolf but may be blowing smoke.

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Tags: taxes, tax system, tax inversions, corporate taxes, corporate tax, corporate profit

Proposal for Union Membership to be a Civil Right

TCF fellows, Richard D. Kahlenberg and Moshe Marvit have been quoted in a Tri-States Public Radio article about the Ellison-Lewis Bill.

Progressive Democrats are fighting back against employers that break the law by introducing legislation on Capitol Hill that makes free association with unions a Civil Right.

Democratic Congressmen Keith Ellison, of Minnesota, and John Lewis, the Civil Rights pioneer from Georgia, on July 30 introduced the Employee Empowerment Act, a measure that would shield labor organizing from retaliation like protections against other forms of discrimination. The legislation would make joining a union a legally protected Civil Right by bringing union membership under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act – the same legislation that bars employment bias based on race, gender, religion, national origin, etc.

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Tags: unions, union rights, union organizing, union movement, labor unions, labor rights, labor organizing as a civil right, labor organizing, labor movement, labor laws

Broken levy: How U.S. tax law encourages inversions

TCF fellow Edward D. Kleinbard has been quoted in an article about corporate tax inversions on The Deal.

An innocuously named species of transaction has inspired a political furor this summer. After a number of U.S. companies announced plans to move overseas in so-called inversion deals, Sen. Carl Levin proposed banning them outright. President Barack Obama called the companies unpatriotic. Because of the controversy, Walgreen Co. backed away from structuring its $18 billion purchase of Alliance Boots GmbH as an inversion, while the possibility that inversions will be barred may be pushing other U.S. corporations to consider doing them.

Read more: Broken levy: How U.S. tax law encourages inversions - The Deal Pipeline (SAMPLE CONTENT: NEED AN ID?)

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Tags: taxes, tax inversions, corporate taxes, corporate tax, corporate profit

Is the Burger King-Tim Hortons Deal About More Than Taxes?

TCF fellow, Edward D. Kleinbard has been quoted in an article about Burger King moving its headquarters to Canada on The New Yorker.

On Tuesday, Burger King confirmed that it had agreed to acquire Tim Hortons for eleven billion dollars and would be moving its headquarters to Canada. When the two companies first acknowledged their discussions on Sunday night, one common reaction was: Canada? Tim Hortons, a coffee-and-doughnut chain named after the hockey player who founded it, is known among Canadians for its signature coffee and among people everywhere else for its Canadianness—that is, if it’s known at all.

For years, the chain has tried, and failed, to do more business outside of Canada. Although it makes sense that Tim Hortons might benefit from combining with Burger King, which has done much better in the U.S. and abroad, people have had a hard time understanding the appeal for Burger King—not only of acquiring Tim Hortons but of moving its headquarters up north.

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Tags: taxes, tax inversions, corporate taxes, corporate tax, corporate profit

Warren Buffett is ‘betting against America’ on Burger King. Or is he?

TCF fellow, Edward D. Kleinbard has been quoted in a LA Times article about Warren Buffett's investment in the Burger King corporate inversion deal.

Back in February, in his annual message to shareholders in his company Berkshire Hathaway, Warren Buffett said this:

"Who has ever benefited during the past 237 years by betting against America? ... America's best years lie ahead."

You can expect these words to be thrown back in Buffett's face this week (as we're doing), as word spreads of his investment in a corporate "inversion" deal, in which Burger King will relocate its tax home to Canada.

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Tags: taxes, tax inversions, corporate taxes, corporate tax, corporate profit

The Threat That Could Scar the Economy for Decades

TCF fellow, Andrew Fieldhouse writes about the need for U.S. policymakers to address the impacts of the recession, in an article for The Fiscal Times.

Despite some signs of improvement, the U.S. economy remains far from healed. And the longer the slump persists, the nastier the lingering scar that will mar the economy for decades to come.

By the best measures of economic health, more than five years after the recession ended the U.S. economy is only one-third to half the way to fully recovered. But hidden beyond the immediate tolls of inadequate recovery, notably high unemployment and depressed incomes, lies another grave cost: The economy’s potential health and productivity is atrophying from this prolonged spell of stagnation. 

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Tags: unemployment rate, stimulus spending, stimulus, recession, federal reserve, economy policy, economy, economics, economic stagnation, economic recovery


Workers & Economic Inequality

Workers & Economic Inequality

In recent decades, and especially since 2000, the richest Americans have enjoyed soaring income and wealth while the rest of the population's living standards have stagnated. The Century Foundation was one of the first institutions to raise serious concerns about these trends and propose ideas for improving economic conditions for all Americans- not just the fortunate few.

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