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Thanks to Euractiv.com

Thanks to Euractiv.com

Brexit – Why did the Brits Vote to Leave?

The answer to that question is not a simple one and must take into account a myriad of different things.  However, we can get a good insight by looking at one simple item of news today.

The European Commission has decided that Apple owes almost $15 Billion in back taxes to Ireland.  You would think that Ireland would love that.  But it’s not the case.  Here’s why:

Corporate taxes in Ireland are about 12.5% vs. the 35% average in the USA.  That, and an educated and less expensive workforce, has led to Apple (and Microsoft and Facebook and Google and about a dozen huge US companies) to establish facilities in Ireland.  These companies employ about 140,000 people in Ireland.

It was the Irish who improved their education system to prepare its people to become a highly valued workforce.  It was the Irish who decided to establish a tax system that would be attractive to foreign investment.  The EU did neither of these things.

Now, the EU thinks it is unfair for Ireland to make itself more attractive to investment than the rest of Europe so they want to punish the Irish while pretending to work for them by winning for Ireland a big tax windfall.

This is all about the EU flexing its muscle and keeping a ‘curve breaker’ in line.  The Irish are too smart to fall for it.  They are fighting the EU ruling.  In short, the Irish are doing a better job than the EU and they want the folks from the EU to butt out – almost in the same way that the Brits wanted the EU out so they could once again determine their own fate.

Of course, Apple is also fighting this and it will be interesting if the Largest US company or the European Union will prevail.  The backlash against central planning and globalism seems to grow daily.

I apologize for not posting for a while and hope to make up for it with a few interesting insights that we don’t often hear.  Stay tuned.

Just returned from an extended trip to Europe for a week of vacation and two weeks of work.  Nine days of the trip were spent at the Bauma Exposition, the world’s largest construction trade show.   It was interesting to speak with people from every imaginable country about our concrete equipment, but it was fascinating to talk with non-Americans about American politics.

Discussion was often centered on our “new President” and his new ideas.  If you are a fan of the current Congress or the “new President” you will not like the next few posts on this site.  The business people with whom we spoke were quite outspoken about what they hear we are doing in America.   If Mr. Obama or the current Congress think they are loved abroad, what I heard does anything but confirm that view.  In fact, I was surprised how many people mentioned how crude and unworldly they thought our “new President.”

More to come on foreign views of America moving toward Government Health Care, Taxation, and Border/Immigration issues.  But, first, I have to respond to some 100 good leads from countries from Finland to South Africa, Moldova to Brasil, Ireland to Reunion, and Australia to Qatar.

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