Google is in hot water. The search engine colossus known for its famous motto “don’t be evil” has just contradicted itself. It has done something very evil which is willful tax evasion and the law is crying foul. Google was questioned by aggressive lawmakers from the United Kingdom regarding certain misleading statements it made about its tax matters.
The European Head of Google, Matt Brittin had clearly stated earlier that Google did not sell to UK clients, according to Reuters. However, later on several accomplices blew the whistle and told authorities the truth regarding the facts of the matter. The Head had blatantly lied. However, Brittin says that nothing out of the ordinary occurred and that in his humble opinion no rules were broken.
The British lawmakers were furious over this breach of trust. “It really doesn’t wash!” said Stephen Barclay, a prominent member of the Public Accounts Committee. The ruse used by Google appears to have been the employment of an Ireland domicile as a face-saving device. Since Irish accounts are not taxed due to their real source being an affiliate in Bermuda, Google is now defending itself by saying that its UK acts were for promotional purposes only.
However, LinkedIn profiles of employees shows that they did do work despite the statement denying such transactions by the European Head. Google has made more profits than it has paid taxes. This is an anomaly that will have to be investigated into on a deeper level.
Several other huge companies such as Starbucks, Microsoft and Amazon have faced similar issues. It comes with the territory since where there is a lot of concentrated money there will be people who have their eyes set on the loot. Besides we are living in a far more democratic and less egocentric time than the era of African Kings. This demands that money be spread around or at least redistributed. Like dirt, money looks good only once it has been spread around instead of segregated in a single spot. However, the fact that capitalism is the top cat among economic systems translates into sporadic privilege that is unfair and unjust since it breeds exclusivity.
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