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03.16.09

Microsoft, a Notorious Tax Evader, Takes Money from Taxpayers to Help Its Own Business (Updated)

Posted in Finance, GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 7:58 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Hands grab money

Summary: Money is being stolen from the public in order to fund projects that are beneficial to Microsoft, which increasingly experiences financial difficulties

Microsoft’s tax evasion around the world is a topic that we previously summarised right here. Almost no other company is equally notorious for taxation irregularities — an issue that’s rather consistent across the board. So how does it feel to know that this year’s public looting (more commonly known as “bailout” or — more euphemistically — “stimulus”) will go to a tax-evading monopoly abuser? That is precisely what’s likely to happen pretty soon, according to Bloomberg.

Microsoft Corp., which has $20 billion of cash in the bank, is among the first in the Puget Sound area to benefit from the investment in roads and bridges through President Barack Obama’s stimulus plan.

Local planners allotted $11 million of $214 million awarded to the region to help pay for a highway overpass in Redmond, Washington, connecting one part of Microsoft’s wooded campus with another. The world’s largest software maker will contribute almost half of the $36.5 million cost. Other federal and local money will pay the rest.

Here is the more concise summary from Slashdot:

‘Bridge to Microsoft’ Gets Federal Stimulus Funds

“Among the first to benefit from the investment in roads and bridges through Obama’s stimulus plan is Microsoft, which has $20B in the bank. Local planners have allotted $11M to help pay for a highway overpass to connect one part of Microsoft’s wooded campus with another. Microsoft will contribute almost half of the $36.5M cost; other federal and local money will pay the rest. ‘Steve Ballmer or Bill Gates could finance this out of pocket change,’ griped Steve Ellis of the Taxpayers for Common Sense. ‘Subsidizing an overpass to one of the richest companies in the country certainly isn’t going to be the best use of our precious dollars.’ Ellis called the project ‘a bridge to Microsoft,’ alluding to Alaska’s infamous ‘Bridge to Nowhere’.”

Lest we forget that Microsoft lobbied for the bailout and Steve Ballmer got personally involved in this. Microsoft is approaching debt [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] and it has been having financial problems for quite a while (with a recent investors backlash).

A few days ago we wrote about Microsoft’s prospects being further disregarded by Morgan Stanley and here is a report on the subject, which happens to come from the so-called “Wintel press”.

Microsoft shares fall on weaker PC growth outlook

[...]

Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Holt expects PC unit sales to fall by 11 percent for calendar year 2009, down from his previous outlook of a 2 percent decline.

The large majority of Windows users are stuck with Windows XP. Given that fewer people are buying new PCs nowadays, the likelihood of upgrading to GNU/Linux is increased considerably.

Updated: Coverage from the ‘Microsoft press’ (Seattle):

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2 Comments

  1. G. Michaels said,

    March 16, 2009 at 2:39 pm

    Gravatar

    Hi Roy :)

    I was wondering if you’re also going to do a hard-hitting investigative piece about how companies like Google and IBM use offshore tax shelters to, as you say, “help their own business”?

    Also, maybe just a nitpick here as you call it when people question major chunks of your (continually incorrect) premises, but how can Microsoft be “near debt” if the article says they have $20B in the bank? Just wondering.

  2. twitter said,

    May 5, 2009 at 11:37 pm

    Gravatar

    It is worth recording that local papers are billing the bridge to M$ as a way for M$ employees to get from work to the private mall that M$ just opened. As things are, they have to take a shuttle buss. Because M$ is busy firing US citizens, the other 45,000 are not likely to buy much.

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