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Gosh, you’ve got to feel sorry for Pfizer. The poor drug giant has to pay taxes in our country, so it’s leaving.
When I say “poor” drug giant, I don’t mean Pfizer is broke or in the poor house. No, no, the pill peddler is incredibly rich, hauling in some $50 billion a year on sales of Viagra, Lipitor, Celebrex, and such. However, the powerhouse drug maker feels put upon by what its CEO calls “[America’s] uncompetitive tax rate.” So, poor baby, Pfizer says it must renounce its citizenship in our country, flee to the lower-tax sanctuary of England, and reincorporate as a British firm.
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But, before you weep for Pfizer and curse America’s corporate tax rate, note that corporations use a mess of loopholes to avoid paying anywhere near the official rate. In fact, while Pfizer hauled in more than $17 billion in profits from its US sales from 2010 through 2012, it paid zero income taxes to our nation – and actually got a rebate from us taxpayers of $2.2 billion.
Special tax breaks are hardly all that this expatriate ingrate gets from us. How about that fat subsidy called Medicare Part D that its lobbyists wrote and got George W to ram into law? It’s a huge chunk of corporate socialism that forces taxpayers to shell out billions a year to cover whatever rip-off prices Pfizer and other Big Pharma profiteers choose to charge for the medicines that seniors get. Yet, while this corporate greedhead says it no longer wants to be an American, it most certainly does want to keep getting this platinum-coated welfare payment from the American government it supposedly disdains.
Notice, too, that while Pfizer is moving its citizenship, it wants its headquarters and top executives to stay in the good ol’ USA. Excuse me, but if Pfizer executives choose to disown America, then America should disown them.
“Pfizer’s New Tax Remedy,” Austin American Statesman,” May 4, 2014.
“Pfizer Proposes a Marriage and a Move to Britain, Easing Taxes,” The New York Times, April 29, 2014.
“Corporate Tax Dodgers: 10 Companies and Their Tax Loopholes,” www.ips-dc.org, April 15, 2013.