As Washington worries about the United States’ growing deficit problem, there’s mounting evidence the government is failing to collect taxes from wealthy individuals and corporations. A piece in today’s New York Times by David Kocieniewskioutlines how G.E. skirted paying any taxes on $5.1 billion in profits in 2010–in addition to claiming a $3.2 billion tax credit.
The main reason G.E. is so adept at avoiding paying taxes, Kocieniewski writes, is because it’s compiled an all-star team of in-house tax professionals plucked from the Internal Revenue Service, the Treasury Department, and “virtually all the tax-writing committees in Congress.”
G.E.– whose slogan is “Imagination at Work”– has in-house, Kocieniewski writes, what is considered by many to be the best tax law firm in the world. Their secret to success is a familiar one, though G.E. appears to have perfected it: