Dollars Vandalized in Tax Protest
Americans have apparently taken to defacing dollar bills in protest at what they see as corporate tax avoidance. One can’t help wondering if they are not being a little short sighted in this day and age. Surely it makes sense for the job creators to be given some leeway in order to get the economy back on track?
Last year, General Electric reported worldwide profits of $14.2bn (£8.9bn). How much was the federal corporate tax bill for America’s largest firm? Nada, nothing, zilch, zero. It was not alone. Bank of America trousered a $336bn bailout in 2009 but paid no federal corporate tax in 2010.
Now furious American taxpayers are taking note of corporate tax avoidance – by defacing dollar bills. Stamp activism is a growing phenomenon, with photographs of the scrawled-on and rubber-stamped $1 notes spreading across social media.
"This is $1 more than GE has paid in taxes," says one message. Others deface George Washington with scrawled remarks from "This is $1 more than the Bandits of America (BOA) paid in taxes" to "Tax the rich, Save yo gramma". On another PhotoShopped note, "In God we trust" is changed to "In debt we trust". Occasionally the $1 protest veers off message: on one buck, "God" is replaced with "the Dude" after Jeff Bridges’s stoner character in The Big Lebowski.
Read more at www.guardian.co.uk
Will the protest spread to Britain? We have more than our fair share of bankers to bash and tax-avoiding corporations. Unfortunately, writing on bank notes is illegal. So every time you stamp “We’re all in this together” or “In Fred the Shred we trust” on a fiver, be warned, you could be prosecuted and fined £200.