Visions of a Freeman -
October 22, 2013
FoxNews evades paying
Take a look for yourself:
Federal Funding Of Fox News
Posted by: Mark @ 1:44 pm
A few weeks ago video pimp and propagandist, James O’Keefe, released a
heavily edited and deliberately deceptive video that purported to expose
an institutional bias at National Public Radio. It was quickly debunked
and denounced as a fraud by analysts across the political spectrum,
including those at Glenn Beck’s web site, The Blaze.
Nevertheless, partisans in Congress and agenda-driven conservatives in
the press continue to behave as if the video were legitimate. The House
of Representatives, on a party-line vote, passed a resolution to defund
NPR – a purely symbolic gesture as the Senate is not likely to concur.
The latest attack comes from former NPR correspondent, and confessed
bigot, Juan Williams, in an op-ed for The Hill. After first conceding
that “NPR is an important platform for journalism,” Williams joins his
conservative comrades in calling for federal defunding of NPR. But he
also reveals his self-serving and vengeful motivation by slandering NPR
in saying that…
“They’re willing to do anything in service of any liberal with money.
This includes firing me and skewing the editorial content of their
Nowhere in the article did Williams support his contention that “liberal
money” was behind either his termination or any of its reporting. This
is nothing more than a personal vendetta on Williams’ part. He is merely
using the funding debate to strike his own blows against a former
employer for whom he obviously bears a deep resentment.
However, if the right wants to introduce the issue of federal funding of
the media into the public debate, they should be prepared to see their
own Fox gored. Fox News has been the beneficiary of government largess
for years and it is time to stop it and make Fox pay its own way. As far
back as 1999, there have been reports documenting how News Corp, Fox’s
parent company, exploited loopholes in tax laws that permitted them to
avoid levies that all other citizens have to pay. From The Economist:
“…News Corporation and its subsidiaries paid only A$325m ($238m) in
corporate taxes worldwide. In the same period, its consolidated pre-tax
profits were A$5.4 billion. So News Corporation has paid an effective
tax rate of only around 6%. By comparison, Disney, one of the world’s
other media empires, paid 31%. Basic corporate-tax rates in Australia,
America and Britain, the three main countries in which News Corporation
operates, are 36%, 35% and 30% respectively.”
The article goes on to describe how News Corp used a complex network of
accounting dodges including as many as 60 shell companies that were
incorporated in such tax havens as the Cayman Islands, Bermuda, the
Netherlands Antilles and the British Virgin Islands. More recently, an
investigation by the New York Times revealed that…
“By taking advantage of a provision in the law that allows expanding
companies like Mr. Murdoch’s to defer taxes to future years, the News
Corporation paid no federal taxes in two of the last four years, and in
the other two it paid only a fraction of what it otherwise would have
owed. During that time, Securities and Exchange Commission records show,
the News Corporation’s domestic pretax profits topped $9.4 billion.”
When giant, prosperous, multinational corporations weasel out of their
tax obligations, ordinary citizens are the ones who are forced to make
up the shortfall. That is effectively a tax subsidy for the corporations
funded by you and me and all of the indignant Tea Partiers who claim to
oppose special interest favors for the elite.
What’s more, federal bailouts to corporations like General Motors and
Citigroup provided them with billions of taxpayer dollars, some of which
are eventually spent on advertising that appears on Fox News, in the
Wall Street Journal, and other Murdoch assets. Additionally, financial
institutions that receive bailout funds use some that money to acquire
shares of News Corp and to finance and insure News Corp activities
including billion dollar motion picture projects like Avatar and
capitalizing mergers and expansions.
USUncut is mounting a campaign to expose this sort of corporate welfare.
They should add News Corp/Fox News to their list. But why aren’t there
more voices objecting to these handouts? Why aren’t Democrats in
Congress drafting legislation to prohibit bailout and stimulus funds
from being used to enrich partisan political operations like Fox News by
funneling cash into their accounts disguised as advertising
expenditures. Every time you see a commercial on the Fox News Channel
for a Chevy Tahoe or a Citibank Visa you are watching your tax dollars
flow into the pockets of Rupert Murdoch and his wealthy associates.
The right wants to defund NPR despite the fact that they have utterly
failed to demonstrate any journalistic bias on the part of NPR. On the
other hand, Fox News has been documented to be brazenly one-sided over
and over again, yet they receive hundreds of millions of dollars in
taxpayer financed subsidies. Well, no more.
Stand Up! Fight Back! It is time to end the federal funding of Fox News
[Update 3/28/11:] And finally there is some media attention on the fact
that there are many U.S. corporations brazenly shortchanging the
country. MSNBC via Daily Beast.
Take a look at this:
Fox News Revives Lie To Advocate Raising Taxes On The Poor
Posted by: Mark @ 10:54 pm
Every year around early April, Fox News unpacks a phony statistic about
taxpayers in order to imply that many Americans don’t pay taxes at all.
They are starting a little early this year.
Neil Cavuto, the VP of business news at Fox, must know better when he
alleges that 49.5% of Americans do not pay taxes. The truth is that they
pay about the same tax rate as other Americans, just no “federal” taxes.
And there is a good reason for that. Most of the citizens in this
category are either seniors living on Social Security, students with
little or no income, and the working poor who earn less than the
statutory minimums to be liable for federal levies. They do, however,
pay state and local taxes, sales taxes, mortgage taxes, and payroll
taxes. But that doesn’t stop Fox from repeatedly asserting the lie that
they pay no taxes at all.
By complaining that these disadvantaged people are tantamount to
freeloaders, Cavuto is in effect advocating an increase in taxes for the
poor. While he and his right-wing cohorts fight tooth and nail to
protect wealthy individuals and corporations from contributing even
modest amounts to the nation’s recovery, they are enthusiastically in
favor of soaking the poor in order to heal the malaise on Wall Street
and the misery of long-suffering bankers. It’s nice to see that these
conservative, anti-tax zealots have finally found a class of people
whose taxes they want to raise.
The phrase that Cavuto used repeatedly is that “everyone has [to have]
skin in the game.” The arrogance dripping from that commentary is that
it assumes that those not paying federal income taxes do not already
have skin in the game. Cavuto thinks that people who have spent a
lifetime paying into the system, and are now struggling to survive in
retirement, haven’t sacrificed enough. He thinks that the unemployed
would prefer to remain that way rather than find jobs and resume
payments to the IRS. That’s an astoundingly stupid point of view that
demonstrates just how ignorant he is of economics and the plight of
people less fortunate than he is. But surprisingly, it isn’t the
stupidest thing he said. In his program’s sarcastic epilogue he issued
this order to the folks who are already undergoing significant
“Stop demanding benefits from a system you give nothing.”
Really? Let me get this straight. If you are so broke that you can’t pay
for taxes – or housing or food – then you should not be getting any
benefits from the social safety nets set up to provide housing and food
for the poor? Apparently Cavuto thinks that such benefits should only go
to people who already have money.
To say that the poor should stop demanding benefits because they are
poor is like chastising a child for wanting to be adopted just because
she’s an orphan. What a selfish freeloader. And she’s just the sort of
ne’er-do-well from whom Cavuto would like to steal candy.
They do not pay the appropriate taxes, contaminate the world with their junk and
then, even if the parasite the system want others, the legitimate users to not
use the social benefits that they do not contribute to.