In recent days both President Barack Obama and Secretary of the Treasury Jack Lew have invoked the term economic patriotism when discussing the flood of American companies that have used inversion mergers with foreign companies to reduce taxes they pay to the United States.
Liberal journalist Jonathan Alter in an August 4 Daily Beast column proposes that Mr. Obama, by executive order, require all U.S. companies with government contracts to sign a loyalty oath, a non-desertion agreement, pledging that they will stay here and patriotically pay the full burden of American taxes.
If a company has no government contracts, Alter would still expect it to sign this oath to earn the right to display a Franklin Delano Roosevelt-like symbol of loyalty that tells customers "We Do Our Part."
"Companies that fail to sign non-desertion agreements would face the kind of public shaming that has gone out of fashion," writes Alter, "but could come back with a vengeance: boycotts, petitions, angry shareholder meetings full of the language of patriotism."
Alter began his career as a speechwriting intern in President Jimmy Carter's White House and has been producing partisan Democratic propaganda ever since masquerading as journalism.
He now asserts that his proposed coercive political correctness could succeed, "because efforts to stop desertion aren't populist or socialist but nationalist, a much more powerful force in American politics ... properly channeled, nationalism and patriotism are matters of the heart that cut to our deepest ideas of who we are."
This is a fundamental question: What does it mean to be a patriotic American?
In a deft reply to Treasury Secretary Lew's impugning of the patriotism of companies that are leaving to escape U.S. taxes, CNBC producer Jake Novak wrote a July 16 imaginary letter from King George III. It congratulated Lew and offered him a knighthood, "for his exemplary comments about the importance of paying taxes to the government, regardless of how high and confiscatory they may be."
Once a place of free enterprise and low taxes, the United States under Progressives now has the highest business taxes of any major nation, starting with a 35 percent federal corporate income tax and an average 5 percent state business income tax, a combined 40 percent tax on American businesses.
No wonder they feel forced to keep $2.1 Trillion of earnings (and jobs) overseas.
In its study Paying Taxes 2014: The Global Picture: A Comparison of Tax Systems in 189 Economies Worldwide, Pricewaterhouse Coopers ranks countries by their business taxes. In this analysis Canada ranks No. 8 in the world, the European welfare state Denmark No. 12, the United Kingdom No. 14, Vladimir Putin's Russian Federation No. 56, and the United States No. 64, with a average business tax burden of 46.3 percent that cripples our global trade competitiveness.
Even Progressive wealth redistributionist Jonathan Alter agrees that American business taxes "are too high," while proposing punishment for companies that legally avoid them.
President Obama denies that companies are persons, even though the U.S. Supreme Court has in recent years ruled that corporations have, in effect, the First Amendment rights to spend on political free speech and uphold their religious beliefs.
Mr. Obama wants to heavily tax private companies, yet deny them the right to participate by giving their opinions in the political process or casting a vote.
President Obama literally wants to impose on U.S. companies taxation without representation.
"As we see it ... patriotism is loyalty and devotion to America's founding ideals," Craig R. Smith and I write in our latest book "Don't Bank On It! The Unsafe World of 21st Century Banking," out later this month. "We therefore think it patriotic to avoid paying taxes to a leftist regime like President Obama's that would use our taxes to expand government."
"American Exceptionalism exists because we are a nation whose people carry the genes of brave pioneers who moved here for religious and economic liberty.
"Some of us may feel a restless need to seek freedom from today's rapacious regime by going into exile. They may be some of America's truest patriots, refusing to give their lives to today's rulers and keeping the spirit of freedom alive in some distant tax haven. We wish them Godspeed and pray that they return when American liberty does."
Lowell Ponte is co-author, with Craig R. Smith, of "The Great Withdrawal"; "Crashing the Dollar: How to Survive a Global Currency Collapse"; "The Great Debasement: The 100-Year Dying of the Dollar and How to Get America's Money Back"; "The Inflation Deception: Six Ways Government Tricks Us . . . And Seven Ways to Stop It"; and "Re-Making Money: Ways to Restore America's Optimistic Golden Age." Read more reports from Lowell Ponte — Click Here Now.
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