Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Corporate conspiracy?

Why is "tort reform" an essential part of Republican talking points?

Why does a little house in Wyoming house more than 2,000 companies?

For an answer to the first question, check out this story about a documentary filmmaker from Ashland, Ore., who was also featured on NPR last week.

Susan Saladoff's film, "Hot Coffee," aired on HBO Monday night and hopefully it'll make its way to a channel, like PBS, that most people can watch.

The shorthand is that by limiting jury awards to victims, states are shifting the costs from corporations to taxpayers. If a maimed individual needs lifelong care that exceeds the limited jury award, something that is not hard to do, the person ends up on Medicaid with taxpayers paying the cost.

In essence, corporations not only buy off our representatives, but they also control more of the civil justice system than anyone really knows.

As Alan Price sang years ago in the soundtrack to "O Lucky Man":

"Next to health is wealth, and only wealth will buy you justice."

As for the second question, check out this piece from Reuters on how you don't need to go offshore to the Cayman Islands to set up a shell corporation. You can do it onshore in states like Wyoming, Nevada and Delaware.

It's no wonder we have a huge deficit. The people who have the most money, and can easily afford our low tax rates, avoid paying any taxes. We can get a handle on our debt. We just have to "follow the money."

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