A high-profile outside Obama economic adviser is promoting a huge corporate giveaway that would slash taxes on $1.4 trillion in profits corporations have sheltered overseas, according to an article in The Kiplinger Letter.
The adviser, Laura Tyson, sits on the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, an outside advisory group that reports regularly to President Obama and is chaired by GE Chairman Jeffrey Immelt. She also chaired Bill Clinton’s White House Council of Economic Advisers.
According to the story, authored by veteran economics reporter John Maggs, Tyson is working with “a couple of dozen giant corporations” that are “spending millions” to convince Congress to nearly eliminate taxes for a year on the profits as long as the money is repatriated to the United States.
Obama opposes the change, according to the piece.
Supporters claim the tax holiday will boost the economy, even if the vast majority of the money is retained by companies and their shareholders. President Obama and most Democrats say the move is an unfair giveaway to the rich, and they cite research on a similar 2004 tax holiday that they say shows it produced few jobs.
Tyson authored a report arguing that repatriating the money to the United States would boost investment and stimulate economic growth. The report was paid for by the companies, who along with their well-to-do shareholders, would benefit.
Obama had been barnstorming the country slamming the wealthy for shirking their tax obligations.
Ironically enough, Tyson justifies the handout to the rich by invoking “trickle-down” economics.
Tyson’s defense is that the report’s economic reasoning is solid, and it is: If you distribute a trillion dollars to corporations and the wealthy, some will spill over to others.
Maggs wrote the article to illustrate how corporations routinely tap “revered experts” like Tyson to issue favorable reports that seem independent but that are actually fully bought and paid for.