Monday, January 21, 2013

Petard. Not.

Via TaxProf, we get to this nifty story about Dell Computer's proposed going-private deal, and the importance of its $14 billion trapped outside of the United States. Those of you among our readers who are not finance professionals might refer back to our post on "corporate taxation for the layman". All will become clear.

We note that Bloomberg found a law professor to snark on Dell from the anti-business left:

“Dell is hoist by its own petard. They have systematically played the global tax avoidance game, and now find themselves with cash just beyond their reach, at least without taking a big tax and financial accounting hit,” said Edward Kleinbard, a professor of tax law at the University of Southern California, and former corporate tax attorney at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP.
"Hoist by its own petard" by "systematically playing the global tax avoidance game"? Uh, if Professor Kleinbard believes that Dell would be better off today if it had gratuitously paid higher corporate taxes for the last 20 years, we propose that like many academics he does not have the faintest clue what is in the best interests of Dell or any other American multinational. However much he may know about black letter law. Which compels us to imagine that Cleary's corporate clients are delighted that Edward Kleinbard has moved on to, er, abstract considerations.

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