The scheme that Apple cooked up this week to finance a $55 billion stock buyback for its shareholders was orchestrated to avoid paying $9.2 billion in taxes, Bloomberg reported Friday.
That $9.2 billion tax bill that Apple dodged would have been enough to make unnecessary all of the major budget cuts we’ve been writing about this week as part of our “Repeal the Sequester” campaign. With $9.2 billion, the federal government could have (based on lists compiled by The Washington Post’s Wonkblog and Think Progress):
- Paid for rescinding the furloughs of air traffic controllers without raiding $250 million from an airport improvement fund.
- Restored Head Start funding to avoid having to kick an estimated 70,000 people out of the program this year.
- Kept Meals on Wheels funding for seniors intact.
- Restored National Institutes of Health funding, so that research on cancer treatments and other diseases could continue uninterrupted.
- Rescinded cuts of up to 10.7 percent in unemployment checks to people who have been looking for work for more than six months without success.
- Kept paying for public housing assistance and housing vouchers for people who might otherwise be homeless or in substandard living conditions.
- Rescinded cuts in programs for children with special needs and learning disabilities.
- Kept already stretched Occupational Safety and Health inspectors on the job, doing the 1,200 workplace inspections that are being shelved by sequestration.
- Fully funded disaster relief programs, a particularly critical need now that a wildfire is currently causing serious damage in southern California.
- Restored $480 million now cut from the FBI’s operations. (more…)