The Times Takes Another Bite Out of Apple
On Saturday there was a long, long story in the New York Times about Apple and its taxes and how Apple is avoiding paying taxes and how mean that is to the country. Now, let me set this up. I know many of you are not fans of Apple because you consider them to be a bunch of left-wingers and so forth. And I know that many of you get a little disturbed when I talk about my Apple stuff, that I like it, and I share it with you. I’m big on sharing my passions. But this is a teachable moment. It is a teachable moment about media. It’s a teachable moment about taxes. And it’s a teachable moment about young people who make up many of the bloggers on a lot of the tech sites that write about Apple and the other high-tech companies and gizmos and products and so forth.
I’ll just give you a little tease. After reading the story, one — and maybe it was more — but one young — I’m sure young — blogger on a tech site expressed sadness and disappointment over the lack of patriotism shown by Apple in doing what it could to avoid paying taxes. Apple did nothing illegal. There’s no law that they broke. This is the key point. There’s another thing in this story. The New York Times used a really fringe think tank called the Greenlining Institute as their source for financial data. And what this group did, they compared Apple’s taxes paid in a year previous to the year’s income they were using to compare. I think it’s an omission of ignorance. I don’t think it was done purposely.
For example, when you file your taxes for April 15th, you’re paying your taxes on your income of the previous year. So what these guys did in this story is report Apple’s income last fiscal year, and then they used the taxes they paid in the year prior. Well, Apple’s profits have been growing like crazy, so the percentage of taxes paid by Apple is, according to the erroneous way in which they reported, is much lower than what was actually paid, probably. But I’ll get into all this. It’s a long story. I’m not gonna read the whole story to you, I don’t have to. But I will read you some of the highlights because it’s a teachable moment. It’s a teachable moment about capitalism. It’s a teachable moment about economic growth, corporate growth, competition, employment. It’s a teachable moment about taxes. And it’s also a teachable moment about what is very predictable, and that is how the youth, young people, these bloggers have been conditioned to look at this.