FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Monday, June 6, 2011
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US Uncut Challenges Apple's Tax Dodging in Company’s Backyard
Grassroots group crashes Apple's yearly conference - uses Apple’s own icons, tech against it
San Francisco, CA – US Uncut, the grassroots effort pressuring corporate tax cheats to pay their fair share, crashed Apple's World Wide Developer's Conference today, using Apple's own technology to expose the company's systematic tax dodging. (Follow developments during the event on Twitter at #iUncut).
“Apple is one of the most profitable companies in the world and now they're lobbying for extra tax loopholes,” said US Uncut San Francisco organizer Leslie Dreyer, “During a time of devestating budget cuts, we cannot afford for companies like Apple to try to finagle special treatment. I can sync my iPhone to my MacBook, why can’t I sync it to my values?”
As more than 5,000 attendees streamed into San Francisco's Moscone Center to hear new Apple product lines announced, they were greeted by what appeared to be an Apple publicity stunt – men and women were sheathed head to toe in a rainbow of Apple-colored spandex body suits emblazoned with a giant QR code (like a barcode for an internet address). However, when attendees used iPhone apps to follow the code on the Internet, instead of an Apple product announcement, a new music video appeared, “Apple: Tax Cheating Doesn’t Sync with My Values,” which is spreading virally on the Internet. Apple was not happy to have their party crashed by creative protest.
This weekend irate citizens staged “dance-ins” at Apple Stores in 15 cities across the country, demanding the computer giant pay its fair share. They used in-store computers to play the new video, dancing along with it inside the stores.
We're using creative ways to express our outrage at companies like Apple, who is seeking new tax loopholes while the public services we all depend on get the axe,” said US Uncut California organizer Joanne Gifford, “Should we really be giving away billions to the folks who sell iPads while Congress cuts Grandma off Medicare? That’s simply shameful. Do we want $4 billion for Apple OR salaries for 90,000 teachers?”
US Uncut is demanding that Apple stop supporting the “Win America Campaign” (WAC), an effort aiming to repatriate $1 trillion in corporate profits now stashed in overseas tax havens at a mere 5.25% tax rate. The current legal tax rate on foreign earnings is 35% when they are brought back to the shores of the United States. If Congress gives the corporations in the WAC coalition this tax loophole, it would cost American taxpayers over $80 billion.
“I love my iPhone, but I hate tax cheats. The only winners in the WAC effort are the same corporate executives who continue to steal $1 trillion out of our nation’s coffers every decade,” said US Uncut spokesperson Carl Gibson, “Hey, Apple, if you’re going to lead the tax dodgers lobby, then expect us to show up on your corporate storefront. We all pay our fair share of taxes, and Apple should too.”
US Uncut is a decentralized grassroots movement organized through social media that connects corporate tax cheating to public service cuts. As Americans are being forced to endure brutal budget cuts, US Uncut is calling for an end to corporate tax avoidance, focusing on Apple, General Electric, Bank of America, Verizon and other companies that aggressively dodge taxes. The group has led over 300 actions nationwide since February 2011.
For more information, please visit: http://USuncut.org/targets/apple