Spencer Martin: ‘I have to object to the idea that the OECD is a trustworthy organization – they epitomize the international bureaucracy of unelected mandarins who want to control things just for the glory of control. The OECD initiative is only about tax havens on the surface. Its main impetus is to implement France’s ideas about eliminating ‘harmful tax competition’ among nations and the need to ‘harmonize’ tax rates across members (at the highest common denominator, of course). Something rather like forcing Florida to charge New York tax rates.’
☞ I doubt we are in danger of having France impose its tax laws on us any time soon – but getting that missile shield in place, and a full outer-space military capability, would be a prudent safeguard just in case.
EL MARLBORO MUCHAHO
Joe Cherner: ‘In the United States, placing cigarette ads at every checkout counter is LEGAL. But Wal-Mart doesn’t do it. ‘The health of our U.S. customers is important to us,’ according to a Wal-Mart spokesperson. (Tobacco addiction kills more than 400,000 Americans each year.) But in less developed countries, where customers are less informed, Wal-Mart pushes Marlboro billboards at every checkout counter (for a picture, click here). Wal-Mart also allows Philip Morris to use its parking lots in less developed countries to host Marlboro Adventure Team attractions where young people put on safety harnesses and try out fun and daring outdoor climbing activities. Wal-Mart’s response? As best I can piece together their point of view after months of talking with these folks, it is: ‘The health of our customers in less developed countries is not our top priority.’ But isn’t the health of ALL children important?’
☞ To learn more, click here.
BETTER OFF IN AN ORPHANAGE?
Now here’s a controversial topic – gay adoption. What do you make of the logic in this editorial from the Chicago Tribune?
Quote of the Day
Money is a singular thing. It ranks with love as man’s greatest source of joy. And with death as his greatest source of anxiety. Over all history it has oppressed nearly all people in one of two ways: either it has been abundant and very unreliable, or reliable and very scarce.~John Kenneth Galbraith, The Age of Uncertainty
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