The Village Voice has an excellent article listing “the ten most corrupt tax loopholes”. Mitt Romney says he will balance the budget (while cutting taxes and increasing military spending) by closing tax loopholes. But he won’t tell us which loopholes.
For example, the loophole that allows Apple to pretend they are an Irish company and thus avoid taxes on their most valuable assets. If Apple were a drug pusher, they would be arrested for money laundering. And not just Apple — money laundering like this is practiced by corporations like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Eli Lilly, and Pfizer.
Or the “loophole” that allows passive investors to pay less in taxes than people who work. Even Ronald Reagan made the capital gains tax the same as the highest personal income tax rate.
There are eight others, including breaks for shipping jobs overseas, allowing corporations like Facebook to undervalue their stock and write off the difference, $20 billion given to the oil industry that even they say they don’t need, Delaware — our own onshore corporate tax haven, allowing the rich to save on their yacht using the home interest deduction, and (my personal pet peeve) tax bribes to get companies to move factories from one state to another.
These loopholes represent hundreds of billions or even trillions in dollars of revenue lost to the government. Of course, Romney and other Republicans have been the prime beneficiaries of lobbying money that is going to keep and expand these loopholes. Not to mention that Romney himself made most of his own money exploiting these loopholes to the max. And the lobbying has paid off — previous laws to eliminate these loopholes have been viciously blocked by Republicans. Does anyone actually believe that Romney will do anything to eliminate them?