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(CNN)   Accenture moves to Bermuda to escape US taxes and policies; gets contract, tax money and a chance to shape policy   (money.cnn.com) divider line 265
    More: Asinine  
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16244 clicks; posted to Main » on 03 Jun 2004 at 9:11 AM (10 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2004-06-03 09:40:52 AM  
Two comments:

#1, Would you all be complaining if the company was originally from Bermuda? Or if it were a company from Switzerland, Japan, etc? Or are you only complaining because they left the USA.

Really, why should a truly global company be in the USA? Is the USA the best country to host global corporations with all of the taxation and political/business corruption? Why does the USA deserve the tax revenue from their global enterprise?

#2, Since they are not a US company, are they compelled to share information under the Patriot Act? You see, ANY company in the US that collects public/private data has to disclose it to the Fed upon request. Even though they are administering a federal program, must they disclose other information?

The reason I say that is being a global company, they could for example have clients in China. If they were based in the USA, the USA could use the Patriot Act to conduct espionage on Chinese clients.

Just because they have a US office, does that mean they are susceptible, or are they insulated?
 
2004-06-03 09:41:15 AM  
Apparently the rotten apples don't fall too far from the Bush tree.
 
2004-06-03 09:41:31 AM  
Homeland Security officials put its value at between $10 million and $10 billion.

No Comment Necessary
 
2004-06-03 09:41:56 AM  
BearGoneFishing

Are you privy to information to the contrary?


Did you not comprehend what I said? I'm not arguing to the contrary! You made a patently obvious remark. OF COURSE, Bush wasn't going to bail out Enron at that point, he would have been inescapably complicit in their pyramid scheme. It doesn't take a brain surgeon to figure out the political damage that it would have done. Nevertheless, Enron was Bush's biggest supporter. And Bush returned the favors.


It seems clear that their donations did nothing to mitigate their three years of lies and deceit.


Huh?
 
2004-06-03 09:41:56 AM  
2004-06-03 09:26:08 AM Blahbbs
Arthur Anderson and Anderson Consulting (Accenture) are wholly separate companies, and have been so for quite some time. While there may be some connections, it probably isn't quite fair to villify Accenture based on their former affiliation with Arthur Anderson.

Further, it was one of the messiest corporate divorces in the history of business. Ever. Worldwide.

Still, I have to say something in defense of the hard-working people of both Andersen and Accenture. I know many of them, and they are among the most honest, on-the-level professionals I have ever met. Unfortunately for them (including my wife), they have been tarred by the broad brush of corporate scandal wrought by the hot-shot greed-heads, and their resumes are forever tainted.
 
2004-06-03 09:42:10 AM  
Typical. farking typical.
 
2004-06-03 09:43:27 AM  
enave

Our liberals seem to be different than their liberals. That camera shiat is kinda freaky. I lived in Britain for a year (and this was almost 10 years ago) and there were cameras /everywhere/.

I was amazed (as a ... hmmm well, my political leanings are complicated, but socially, at least, I am probably very liberal) as an L-word, a few weeks ago, to find out that the conservative line is that it is the /liberals/ who want to limit freedoms. That just seems absurd to me. However, when one thinks of whacky ideas like political correctness, well, one has to admit that in some ways they have a point. COnservatives also get pissed off about affirmitive action (as we all know) but the argument put forth to me in the same conversation was that they were mad about it because it limited their freedoms, which, in a certian light, I can understand.
 
2004-06-03 09:44:00 AM  
I would say the United States deserves the tax revenue because they're the ones paying Accenture.
 
2004-06-03 09:44:02 AM  
Blahbbs

Arthur Anderson and Anderson Consulting (Accenture) are wholly separate companies, and have been so for quite some time. While there may be some connections, it probably isn't quite fair to villify Accenture based on their former affiliation with Arthur Anderson.


You are right. Continue to vilify Accenture based on its own actions.
 
2004-06-03 09:44:07 AM  
SCSIBear
Please post compromising photo of said hosebeast.
 
2004-06-03 09:44:15 AM  
Remember Arthur Anderson? Big scandal a couple years ago. They've moved off-shore and changed their name. Much like MCI. Kept on contributing to Bush. The article below suggests the pay-off. Clearly a 'them and us' thing.

Bush Gives Contract to Tax Traitor/Campaign Donor

President Bush has said he wants to "make sure that the system is fair for those of us who do pay taxes" and that "we want everybody paying their fair share."1 But yesterday, the president went out of his way to lavish a massive government contract on a major campaign contributor,2 even though it specifically moved operations offshore to avoid paying U.S. taxes.

According to news reports, the Bush administration yesterday gave a $10 billion contract3 for the Department of Homeland Security to Accenture (formerly Arthur Andersen), despite the company having recently moved its official headquarters to Bermuda to avoid U.S. taxes.4 The contract was awarded less than two years after the White House and its allies in Congress gutted a House-passed provision that would have banned awarding homeland
security contracts to corporations who exploit tax loopholes, move offshore, and avoid U.S. taxes.5 At the time, Accenture lobbied to eliminate the provision,6 hiring GOP political consultant "and Bush family confidant"
Charlie Black to lobby on its behalf.7 Accenture executives have given President Bush more than $68,000 in campaign contributions8 since 2000.

Of course, the president has made a practice of paying lip service to the problem of corporate tax evasion, while actively opposing solutions behind the scenes. ABC News reported that when Congress was considering bills to
curb the practice in 2002, Bush "said the Bermuda loophole
should be closed" but refused to support "any of the bills that would do so"9 and then allowed his allies to kill the legislation.

Sources:

1. Presidential Speech, WhiteHouse.gov, 04/15/04.
2. "Donors to George W. Bush between 2000-2004 who work for
Accenture,"
Opensecrets.org.
3. "Homeland Security awards $10 billion border security
contract," WVEC-TV,
6/02/04.
4. "GAO concludes Accenture, others, use tax havens,"
Washington Technology,
10/3/02.
5. Congressional Quarterly Weekly, 12/6/02.
6. Baltimore Sun, 6/9/02.
7. "The Taxonomist: Standing up Against America," The
American Prospect,
11/4/02.
8. "Donors to George W. Bush between 2000-2004 who work for
Accenture,"
Opensecrets.org.
9. ABC News, 07/12/02.

10. BUSH SUCKS
 
2004-06-03 09:44:30 AM  
peter_hook

If a company is benefitting from government services, it owes taxes. PERIOD.
 
2004-06-03 09:45:22 AM  
Accenture has been located in Bermuda since they became Andersen Consulting in 1999. They are not "moving" to Bermuda--they have always been there. Yes, it is for tax reasons. As a former employee, their business practices are questionable, but hey, that's Capitalism in action, right?
 
2004-06-03 09:45:44 AM  
don't hate the playa'...hat the game
 
2004-06-03 09:45:47 AM  
Mr_Fabulous

Further, it was one of the messiest corporate divorces in the history of business. Ever. Worldwide.


When did they split?
 
2004-06-03 09:45:50 AM  
I used to work for these guys (Accenture), and had a fairly successful career there. By and large, I enjoyed my time with them and made far more money than what I deserved. A couple of things on this....

First off, they're competitors with Andersen Worldwide, mentioned above. They split off back in the late 1990s and became bitter enemies.

Secondly, if we're relying on what they deliver, we are so beyond totally farked it's unimaginable. To put an organization which has been focused, post-Dot.com bubble, on screwing in packaged systems and outsourcing on this sort of project is an incredibly poor choice. I could go on and on, but this has disaster written all over it.

I'll visit again tonight for the personal attacks which will get launched as soon as someone from Accenture stumbles across this post.
 
2004-06-03 09:46:15 AM  
Homeland Security should secure taxpayer money. Those Bastards! Ah ha! Blah.

/Emperor Bush sucks
//mere rants
 
2004-06-03 09:46:41 AM  
Ok folks show's over nothing to see here show's OH MY GOD A HORRIBLE PLANE CRASH
 
2004-06-03 09:47:57 AM  
It's harder to know who to fear the most: those in power, or those who finanace those in power.

I've never heard anything good about the IT side of old Anderson Consulting. And it sounds like the accounting, too, are sleeze.
 
2004-06-03 09:48:12 AM  
Dano33

I would say the United States deserves the tax revenue because they're the ones paying Accenture.

OK, fine. Let's say Deloitte are still a UK based (and founded) company:

Put Deloitte in Accenture's place. Should the USA get the tax revenue, or the UK?
 
2004-06-03 09:48:17 AM  
pontechango

You are implying Bush is somehow responsible for the Enron scandle but offer no proff other than a relationship between Ken Lay and Bush. It is apparent that relationship and campiagn donations did nothing to bail out Enron. Again, what is your point? Bush knows an asshole?
 
2004-06-03 09:48:49 AM  
TREASON
 
2004-06-03 09:49:20 AM  
strangeffect

Wow! Dude, I have one of the original "Lick Bush in '92" shirts. I didn't know anyone else had seen that one. Where can I get a "Lick Bush in '04" shirt?
 
2004-06-03 09:50:11 AM  
pontechango

If a company is benefitting from government services, it owes taxes. PERIOD.


Well, we are currently in a war-time situation. What one might perceive to be fair and just practices need to be pushed aside for the good of "the good." We must defeat "evil" at all costs!

/not pontechango's original point, of course
 
2004-06-03 09:50:26 AM  
Government level nepotism. Homeland Security outsources to Bermuda--they in turn outsources to third world countries. Fate, being fickle, has terrorists infiltrating the facilities manufacturing the US-VISIT fingerprint scanners. The terrorists reprogram the scanners so they can enter the US with impunity. All that remains is whether they design the scanners to recognize certain fingerprints so tracking high-level officials is also built-in.

God bless American greed.
 
2004-06-03 09:51:08 AM  
pontechango

If a company is benefitting from government services, it owes taxes. PERIOD.

So if they are in the USA, they owe taxes to the USA, right? And if they are in Japan, they owe taxes to Japan. What if they are in Grand Cayman, Bermuda, Hong Kong, etc., and there is no taxation as such?

Shouldn't they simply follow the local rules? Are you proposing a 2nd set of rules? And if you're saying a Bermuda company owes the USA taxes, then shouldn't the Japan company owe the USA taxes as well? Or, isn't that double taxation?
 
2004-06-03 09:51:15 AM  
peter_hook

As arguably the most technologically advanced counrty in the world, we probably should be awarding contracts for homeland security to American companies. I mean, it's pretty much common sense.
 
2004-06-03 09:51:24 AM  
Exactly right. There is no difference between the rise to power in either of the two parties, and there is no point arguing about it.

Nice "fear, uncertainty and doubt" spin there.
There's not all that much difference between your two choices, but lets face it; Republicans are flat out rotten.

Asshat. Turncoat. Traitor. "Oh, but it's in my selfish best interest!" No, it isn't, you spoiled little brat. It's in your best interest to support the government which provides the legal and regulatory basis for all that you see around you.

Just thought that bore repeating.
 
2004-06-03 09:52:32 AM  
Big_Bad_Dad, I can't speak to the spectrum of 'Benedict Arnold corporations' that support Kerry, but using Heinz for trolling purposes doesn't wash.

http://www.snopes.com/politics/kerry/heinz.asp

Don't mess with Pittsburgh, dude. We're got enough to be pissed off about without you piling on.
 
2004-06-03 09:52:48 AM  
I liked the Republicans better when they actually tried to defend the American worker from foreign predators, nowadays it's hard to tell the difference between Republican politicians and their corporate owners.
 
2004-06-03 09:53:58 AM  
BearGoneFishing


pontechango

You are implying Bush is somehow responsible for the Enron scandle but offer no proff other than a relationship between Ken Lay and Bush. It is apparent that relationship and campiagn donations did nothing to bail out Enron. Again, what is your point? Bush knows an asshole?



You are right. Bush didn't cause the scandal, he just wanted to make one of the major players in it and one of his best fund raisers the farkin' Energy Secretary.

If the administartion has nothing to hide, why can't we see the notes from Cheney's meeting with Lay and his boys?
And it doesn't bother you that Cheny's good friend and hunting buddy, Scalia is going to be amking the decison if we can see these notes?

Man, it used to be that the mere appearance of impropriety was enough.
 
2004-06-03 09:55:01 AM  
Aldo the Wonder Dog
Don't mess with Pittsburgh, dude. We're got enough to be pissed off about without you piling on.


I almost spit out my coffee - that was the single best comment I read in a long time! (I don't know if you were serious or not, and I mean no offense, of course.)
 
2004-06-03 09:55:23 AM  
Yellowbeard

As arguably the most technologically advanced counrty in the world, we probably should be awarding contracts for homeland security to American companies. I mean, it's pretty much common sense.

Aren't politicians supposed to get the most out of the taxpayer's tax dollars? Would you suggest using a less qualified entity that charges more?

To me, common sense is making the most of our tax dollars. Getting the most bang for the buck. Common sense is using the best possible contractor to do the job. Now, I can't saw that Accenture is neccessarily better than Anderson or Deloitte because in my experience, they are all incompetent...but the best choice you have.

It's like Halliburton rebuilding Iraq. For as poorly as it's gone thus far, they AMAZINGLY are the MOST qualified people to it. It could be worse. They could have used Schlumberger...but then again, they aren't a US company, which is important to you, right?
 
2004-06-03 09:56:02 AM  
Maybe I as an individual I should try this, since I can no longer afford the rising taxes either and need to increase my bottom line profits...
 
2004-06-03 09:56:45 AM  
BearGoneFishing

You are implying Bush is somehow responsible for the Enron scandle but offer no proff other than a relationship between Ken Lay and Bush.It is apparent that relationship and campiagn donations did nothing to bail out Enron. Again, what is your point? Bush knows an asshole?


Enron was Bush's biggest campaign contributor. Bush flew the Enron corporate jet during his presidential campaign. Do you think they gave him money because they thought he was a good guy?! They helped make Bush president for a reason. Do some reading on the Cheney Energy task force.

With that said, it doesn't look like Accenture had anything to do with that side of Enron. But I'm still confused about when and why they split. I thought it had something to do with the Enron implosion or the Spitzer settlement but maybe I was mistaken.
 
2004-06-03 09:56:52 AM  
peter_hook


pontechango

If a company is benefitting from government services, it owes taxes. PERIOD.

So if they are in the USA, they owe taxes to the USA, right? And if they are in Japan, they owe taxes to Japan. What if they are in Grand Cayman, Bermuda, Hong Kong, etc., and there is no taxation as such?

Shouldn't they simply follow the local rules? Are you proposing a 2nd set of rules? And if you're saying a Bermuda company owes the USA taxes, then shouldn't the Japan company owe the USA taxes as well? Or, isn't that double taxation?


I think he's saying that big, fat government contracts should go to companies that aren't exploiting tax loop holes. Accenture is not a "Bermudan" company, their American and they're shirking their responsibilities.
 
2004-06-03 09:57:21 AM  
More power to them. The government deserves to be screwed; they'd only waste the money anyway.
 
2004-06-03 09:57:25 AM  
I don't blame them. Keep sucking more and more taxes and this will become more and more common.
I know, it sucks... less money for welfare, "social security" (read:welfare) and funding for artsy crap that wouldn't survive in the free market. Less funding for the incredibly inadequate education system, "public" transit and for subsidizing dysfunctional companies that can't survive. Did I mention less for welfare??
Nice move Accenture!! Just another way that Atlas will dump his load. Enjoy!!
 
2004-06-03 09:58:53 AM  
Anyone think that maybe we should change our tax laws so that companies prefer to stay here? Seems to me to be the obvious solution. Undersell Bermuda.
 
2004-06-03 09:59:23 AM  
2004-06-03 09:45:47 AM pontechango
Mr_Fabulous
Further, it was one of the messiest corporate divorces in the history of business. Ever. Worldwide.
-----------------------
When did they split?


It took place over a period of years. AC filed for divorce, so to speak, in like '97 or '98...but the arbitration took effect summer of 2000.

It's actually a very complicated story, and I'm simplifying things considerably. And there's no doubt that the partner culture at Andersen Worldwide was largely to blame for their subsequent scandals. But the tens of thousands of corporate foot soldiers outside of the partner loop have been bad-rapped. Sucks.
 
2004-06-03 09:59:23 AM  
Hmm... I have to find a way to incorporate in Bermuda so that *I* can escape the extortionists at the IRS. Why should corporate fatcats have all the fun?
 
2004-06-03 09:59:38 AM  
ProgrammerCat: Screw you traitor. You don't like the country, there are plenty of choices.
 
2004-06-03 09:59:59 AM  
NutznGum

I think he's saying that big, fat government contracts should go to companies that aren't exploiting tax loop holes. Accenture is not a "Bermudan" company, their American and they're shirking their responsibilities.

Accenture is not American at all. They're less American than Deloitte is, and Deloitte has their corporate HQ in the USA.

Furthermore, Accenture can do business with anyone they choose. Were they an American entity, they would not only be subject to US embargoes and the like, but many countries would steer clear of them because of that.
 
2004-06-03 10:00:03 AM  
Welcome to Bush's America.

Halliburton didn't pay taxes for YEARS because they had a "base of operations" in the Caymen Islands. In fact, they got an $85 MILLION refund in 1999.

Meanwhile, my family is living check to check just to cover our daughter's (yes, one child, I believe in population control) medical insurance. My wife and daughter have insurance, I do not, because we cannot afford $200 WEEKLY for coverage for all of us.

I miss America. Where we live now is anything but....
 
2004-06-03 10:00:04 AM  
To me, common sense is making the most of our tax dollars. Getting the most bang for the buck. Common sense is using the best possible contractor to do the job.

Even if it means awarding it to a US company that avoids taxes in an underhanded manner?

Why is the government rewarding this kind of behaivior?
 
2004-06-03 10:00:09 AM  
Big_Bad_Dad writes: the Heinz corp has very few assets in the US...

What on earth does that have to do with John Kerry?
 
2004-06-03 10:00:14 AM  
Not that this is really relevant, but the United States tax laws are terrible.

If I actually had money I be a resident of whatever the new Cayman Islands is right damn quick.
 
2004-06-03 10:01:05 AM  
peter_hook

And if they are in Japan, they owe taxes to Japan. What if they are in Grand Cayman, Bermuda, Hong Kong, etc., and there is no taxation as such?


Give me a break. That's nominal residence bullshiat. Accenture's operations, assets and employees aren't in Bermuda.
 
2004-06-03 10:02:40 AM  
So the National Security of the US is in the hands of a (basically) foreign country who employees foreign workers.

Sounds safe to me!

/duck and cover
 
2004-06-03 10:03:31 AM  
spamdog

Even if it means awarding it to a US company that avoids taxes in an underhanded manner?

Wow. Ok, as it's been said, and you've somehow missed, Accenture is NOT a US company. Not in the slightest. They have no alliegence to the USA, and they are not subject to the intervention of the US in their business practices, unless they are on US soil doing a contract for them.

Secondly, there's nothing underhanded about following the rules. They are complying with local laws and regulations. Let's say I moved to Hong Kong and got a job, and there's no taxes. Since I don't have to pay taxes, am I breaking the rules? The rule says that I don't have to pay taxes. I didn't earn my income in the USA, why are they entitled to it? Or if I go somewhere that has smaller taxes than the USA. Am I breaking any rule by paying my taxes as I'm supposed to?

Why is the government rewarding this kind of behaivior?

Because they are getting the biggest bang for their buck?
 
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