(UPDATE): Open Markets Calls for Investigation of Amazon’s Bait-and-Switch
Bezos really pulled off a doozy of a scam with this 2nd Headquarters snipe hunt. State and local governments sold out the taxpayers. The taxpayers and small businesses. But it seems not everybody’s happy to oblige Mr. Bezos.
Open Markets Calls for Investigation of Amazon’s Bait-and-Switch
Washington, D.C. — In this case, it will open one in northern Virginia, outside Washington, DC, and one in New York City.
New York officials should be especially ashamed of their efforts. Amazon, notoriously, built its business to scale on the back of one of New York’s great businesses, book publishing. And today, as a monopoly in book selling, Amazon wields an iron fist over the publishers, editors, marketers, and authors who make up this vital community. “Rather than rewarding Amazon for its predatory behavior and dictatorial control over New York’s book business, New York politicians should serve their constituents – the people who actually pay their taxes – by demanding that Amazon be broken up and regulated through public action,” Lynn said.
Barry Lynn, Matt Stoller, Sandeep Vaheesan and Lina Khan of Open Markets Institute are available for comment. For interview requests please contact Carli Kientzle at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hopefully people are finally sick of this guy’s greed and arrogance.
This time, Amazon has gone too far: Jeff Bezos's company is profiting and taxpayers are paying the price
For the last year, public officials across America and Canada have held an embarrassing beauty contest to entice Amazon to place its so-called “second headquarters” in their region. They have done this through subsidies and benefits, and the occasional public begging spectacle, like New York Governor Andrew Cuomo musing on changing his name to Amazon Cuomo.
Tuesday, the company essentially announced that the entire contest was premised on a lie. In return for subsidies, the company is opening large satellite offices in three different regions: New York City, the Washington, D.C. Metro area, and Nashville. Such bad faith by Amazon is, as scholar Lina Khan notes, familiar to merchants who must operate on Amazon’s infrastructure. Amazon routinely offers a deal to partners, and then when it gains sufficient power, reneges on those terms.
The benefits offered to Bezos are so egregious as to be comical.
Some of the concessions are small, but humiliating. For instance, It’s not called the Amazon tax, but it might as well be.
Bernie Sanders says Amazon paid no federal income tax in 2017. He's right
Amazon Inc. Paid Zero in Federal Taxes in 2017, Gets $789 Million Windfall from New Tax Law
Opinion: Trump is right: Jeff Bezos is a genius at not paying taxes
In 2017, Amazon paid no federal tax on $5.6 billion in U.S. profits, according to an analysis by Matthew Gardner at the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy. During the previous five years, Amazon paid an effective rate of 11.4% on its profits of $8.2 billion, about a third the statutory rate, Gardner said.
Amazon earned $5.6B in 2017, but paid no federal taxes
New York Politicians Suggest a Better Place Jeff Bezos Can Stick His New Headquarters
Long Island City—Hundreds gathered this afternoon at Gordon Triangle, smack dab in the middle of a newly proposed campus for Amazon employees. Ringed by local news crews, a coalition of local politicians led by City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer and State Senator Michael Gianaris stated their intent to stop Bezos’s highly incentivized land grab by any means necessary.
Beyond the astronomical subsidies being offered to Amazon in exchange for 25,000 promised jobs, the coalition—which includes City Council Member Stephen Levin, state senators Jessica Ramos and Julia Salazar, state assembly members Michael Blake, Latrice Walker and Ron Kim, and U.S. Representative-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez—was broadly critical of the cloak-and-dagger tactics Amazon used to secure the deal, which Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio have attempted to paint as a boon to the city.
Many fail to see any silver lining to the handout. Yesterday, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson said in a statement he was “very concerned” that the process happened “behind closed doors, with zero community input.”
“This has been entirely in the dark,” Levin told the crowd. “I have a land use hearing tomorrow about a sidewalk cafe on Manhattan Avenue.
Widespread backlash to the plan had many wondering exactly who would benefit from what at first blush looks like a massive corporate handout. In a press conference yesterday, Cuomo stated that the subsidies are projected to bring a “9 to 1” return on investment. As Gianaris bluntly informed the crowd and assorted media outlets, “don’t be fooled by the magic numbers going around—this is a bunch of bull.”
“I’ve seen lots of projections, I’ve seen lots of numbers. I’ve also seen a helipad delivered to Jeff Bezos when people in Queensbridge don’t have heat today,” Van Bramer told Gizmodo, referring to the city’s offer to “secure” helicopter access to Amazon. “There’s just no telling us that this is the right thing being done for the right reasons.”