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View Diary: Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos Buys Washington Post for $250M (211 comments)

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  •  Yes, a tax dodger but (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tikkun, ericlewis0, Shockwave

    he elevates it to high art!

    Commenting on the fact that  despite £4.2bn of UK sales, Amazon paid only £2.4m in corporation tax in 2012. In the same year it received £2.5m in government grants.

    Like any really important work of art, it's bound to upset a few people. Just as Banksy causes collateral damage to the neatness of walls, so Amazon's masterpiece is a defacement of the public purse. But it's not just some hooligan's tag, like Google's artless Irish scam. This shows an impish wit and a dark insight. What elevates Amazon's activity is the fact that it applied for government grants. The elegance of that corporate choice is like the ambiguity of the Mona Lisa's smile, the ruthlessness of Mike Tyson's punch and the adaptability of the malaria virus combined. There is no point in criticising anyone or anything that can do that. They can only be admired or destroyed.

    The more you think about it, the more brilliant it is. At first glance, the deftness of securing government funding, which was intended to sustain and encourage marginal businesses, is rather pleasing. The thought of the thousands of small enterprises that could have been nourished and helped to survive by the cash Amazon has swallowed in one tax-cancelling mouthful is challenging and absorbing.

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