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Apple's cash hoard: Begging for a 'windfall tax'?

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by vta, Aug 8, 2008.

  1. vta

    vta The Proletariat

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    Apple's cash hoard: Begging for a 'windfall tax'?

    Posted by Matt Asay 11 comments
    It's almost a truism that while Microsoft struggles to do anything right (in the media's eyes), Apple can pretty much do no wrong. This is as true of Apple's cash position, which Businessweek recently noted may soon surpass that of Microsoft's, as it is of product portfolio and business strategy.

    It's the cash that I find particularly surprising. Apple is swimming in cash, over $20 billion of it. The company adds over $1 billion in cash to its stockpile each quarter. Today we give Apple a free pass on its iTunes/iPod lock-in which delivers much of the Apple profits because we can still happily apply such adjectives as "cool" and "innovative" to Apple.

    The US Congress is fixated with taxing the oil and gas companies for their "windfall profits" today, while Apple's profit margins as a percentage of sales are actually higher than Exxon's and other bogeymen of the Congress.

    There was a time that we said similar things about Microsoft and happily bought into the lock-in that we'd eventually come to mistrust and seek to escape. Few are saying this now of Microsoft, and its cash hoard of roughly $23.7 billion has simultaneously become a cause for envy and concern: What will the convicted monopolist do with that pile of money? Can it possibly be in our interest?

    I suspect that even ardent Apple fans like myself will someday be asking similar questions of Apple. As we buy our way deeper into the Apple ecosystem by adding various pieces of Apple hardware to our homes and offices, Apple will eventually accelerate our dependence on its technology by adding more software offerings (e.g., MobileMe) that make it easier for us to keep this sea of hardware connected and productive.

    At that point we'll start looking for a new savior, and wonder when we allowed ourselves to become so dependent on Apple, just as we once asked of Microsoft. For the moment, I think the giddiness of having a real choice sends us to Apple, Google, and others from Microsoft. It won't last. We're a fickle lot. I can't buy Apple's hardware fast enough today. I'm guessing I'll regret it tomorrow.
  2. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    Companies making money? turning profits? hiring people we can't have that!!!! :laugh2:
  3. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt °¤~Cold Eternal~¤° Staff Member

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    Big Oil has an effect on everyone in the US in one way or another...Apple does not.

    Not saying I am for the windfall profit tax. To me I would only go as far as reducing tax breaks...but the comparison between big oil and apple is not a good one for the reason I listed above.
  4. vta

    vta The Proletariat

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    It is truly odd how hated one becomes when certain heights have been attained. People like nothing better than to see a giant fall.

    I hate Microsoft for it's product, not it's business success.
  5. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    I agree. As a capitalist I'm all for business making money, big money and hiring people, many people and offering benefits. In my view that is the American way. Now anytime a business is doing good they become the enemy and we want Government to go in and restrict these business then we get upset when the business shut down and move jobs overseas.
  6. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    Yes it does have an effect and yet we continue to restrict them from being able to produce the product. Congress has had hearing after hearing about price gouging by the Oil Companies they have yet to find that to be true. Oil Company makes big money and they spend big money to drill
  7. theogt

    theogt Surrealist Zone Supporter

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    I think the point is to not call it a "windfall profit tax" because it's not. It's a "we don't like you because we're used to cheap gas but we don't know any better so we're going to do something that would likely raise gas prices" tax. Or something like that.
  8. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    Problem is you hit them with a high tax and I can promise you it will be felt by us at the pumps. But then hey many Dems were pushing for the carbon tax so we are going to get nailed by them one way or the other and they will continue to use the oil company as the scape goat for their own dirty deeds
  9. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt °¤~Cold Eternal~¤° Staff Member

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    I know what his point was. I made a point that those two areas...oil where EVERYBODY is effected by it and Apple where only a limited number are effected...is not a good comparison and hence the reason the politicians would not go for apple.
  10. Ben_n_austin

    Ben_n_austin Benched

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    ...I'm for healthy transnational businesses, because theoretically it goes both ways. But the laws that give tax breaks to businesses like, ahem, Halliburtion's "subsidiaries" to set up shop in Iran, a sanctioned country, are written by the government and the loopholes are extremely exploited by those in government--to the point of corruption and sometimes treason, imho.
  11. Ben_n_austin

    Ben_n_austin Benched

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    I can't wait until the Apple lobbyists start outnumbering the oil lobbyists.



    Haha....... right?

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