Money can’t buy you love, but it may be able to buy you political influence.
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Some 44,000 people – about one-hundredth of 1% of the US population – have given $10,000 or more each to this election. So much money from so few donors inevitably distorts the political process.
These Iowan supporters of Steve Bullock may hope he’ll make good on promises to get ‘dark money’ out of politics.
AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall
A law professor explains political disclosure laws, how donors get around them – and what to do about it.
Lots of money is spent on campaigns. But is that a problem?
Congressional midterm election spending will likely hit a record $5 billion. But the spending masks the main problem with US campaign financing: who gives the money and what they may get in return.
President Trump signed an executive order related to the Johnson Amendment in 2017.
AP Photo/Evan Vucci
Deactivating the tax provision known as the Johnson Amendment could increase the flow of dark money, reducing accountability in campaign finance.
Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, before he resigned amid scandals.
AP Photo/Jeff Roberson
Embattled Gov. Eric Greitens resigned over allegations tied to political contributions from concealed sources.
Unions have loudly challenged the rise of foreign contract workers.
Rebecca Le May/AAP
Workers are getting ABNs and being employed as contractors responsible for their own tax payments. This is undercutting conditions and eroding the most important part of the nation’s tax base.
Customers don’t expect their banking documents to be found in a gutter on the other side of the country, let alone have the bank blame them.
One bank customer whose identity was stolen asks: ‘Why didn’t they call the fraud squad, or the police?’ It’s a very good question.
The Netherlands is where nearly $1 billion from Australia was sunk into two companies liquidated three years later.
Alex de Haas/flickr
Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has engaged in a series of paper transactions to create a A$936 million loss in Australia – effectively a billion-dollar exercise in avoiding tax.
New Zealand shows up Australia as badly in the field of pharmaceuticals as it does on the rugby field.
Drug prices in Australia are three times higher than in New Zealand. A key reason is the lack of transparency about taxpayer subsidies for Big Pharma and the companies’ own finances.
Despite global outrage at the cost of its Hepatitis C cure, Gilead reaps huge profits – aided by Australian taxpayer subsidies.
Nick St Charles/flickr
How much can a multinational take before its social licence to operate in this country expires? How much corporate welfare is too much?
The Senate Inquiry into Corporate Tax Avoidance has helped expose just how much work remains to be done on the multinational tax front.
The Australian government took out ads this month boasting of victory in the fight against multinational tax avoidance. It is no small irony that taxpayers forked out for this bald-faced lie.
NSW Business Chamber chief executive Stephen Cartwright (pictured right with Malcolm Turnbull) says the chamber is ‘fiercely non-political’.
The NSW Business Chamber insists that arguing against entitlements for low-paid workers and victims of domestic violence qualifies as a charitable exercise.
Wotif is one of a slew of formerly competitive rivals bought up by Expedia.
Australian authorities have allowed predatory online travel agents to shrink their tax base while penalising Australian accommodation operators thanks to onerous commissions and vanishing competition
Gautam Adani’s company is in line to get an extraordinary helping hand from Malcolm Turnbull’s government to develop the Carmichael coal mine.
If the government were to provide loan insurance or loan guarantees, the banks might be more inclined to fund Adani. Taxpayers would then be at risk for the estimated $10 billion in project finance.
Bupa’s financial statements are now structured in a way that sheds little light on the true state of its profitability.
Health insurance is yet another sector that is subsidised by taxpayers yet whose financial disclosures are murky to the point of deception.
Senior ATO officials, including Commissioner of Taxation Chris Jordan, have given evidence to the inquiry. It has heard that completely transferable tax credits mean oil and gas companies won’t pay tax for many years.
The Senate Inquiry into Corporate Tax Avoidance has heard stunning evidence about the failure of the tax and royalties system to capture any of the billions being generated by new projects.
The Australian Tax Office is starting to see the fruits of the pressure flowing from the Senate inquiry into tax avoidance.
eBay still deems its Australian business to be a Swiss business and thereby avoids millions in income tax and GST.
Tech billionaire Sean Parker and his wife Alexandra Lenas Parker are among today’s youngest and most ambitious donors.
Rich Fury/Invision/AP Photo
In ‘The Givers,’ author David Callahan warns that today’s mega-rich philanthropists wield too much political clout. He may be exaggerating their power and lowballing the public’s own strength.
As public angst over the prospective A$1 billion subsidy to coal magnate Guatam Adani hits fever pitch, a small company is modestly beavering away on another – more worthy – energy project in Far North…
Businesses lower down in the supply chain are waiting months for payment, but Coles has moved to pay 1,000 suppliers within 14 days.
Putting a stop to powerful corporations exploiting their powerless suppliers would not only deliver small-business votes but would speed up the entire economy.