On the 21st of June, the National Alliance of HUD tenants marched on the Bank of America and the US Treasury, demanding that over $4 billion in tax breaks for the rich be cancelled, and the money be used to restore the proposed cuts in HUD’s housing aid budget.
Bank of America locked their doors in the faces of the HUD tenants, so NAHT took their giant check symbolizing the taxed Bof A should have paid to the US treasury themselves, where again it was refused.
Video of the protest
Due to their corporate tax break, Bank of America did not pay a single dime in corporate income tax last year, according to NAHT. One speaker went so far as to explain that anyone buying a pack of cigarettes paid more tax than Bank of America paid! This of course is because tobacco, liquor, tires, and a few other products carry Federal excise taxes, while Bank of America apparently paid NO taxes of any kind to the Federal government.
This after bank of America took TARP bailout funds, meaning the taxpayers got to pay BofA twice-first with the bailout, then with the tax break when they made billions of someone else’s money.
At the same time the Paul Ryan budget would give the rich, including Bank of America a $4.4 Billion tax break, it would impose a $5.5 Billion cut for HUD. The pretax earnings of Bank of America alone, meaning pretax profits, not gross revenue, would be sufficient to restore 80% of that HUD budget cut.
If the HUD budget cuts go through, the result will be an estimated $600,000 people losing their housing aid and tens of thuosands made homeless.
In other words, in the US as in Greece, the bankers and their wholly-owned subisidiaries in politics are demanding severe cuts in public programs like housing as a condition of continuing to extend credit to the government. That’s what the Paul Ryan budget is all about: Deep cuts in public services in exchange for no disruption of the flow of credit. Otherwise the GOP is threatening to block raising the debt ceiling, forcing an eventual US default on Treasury bonds-just like Greece.
Financial details from NHAT press packet:
CORRECTION AND DETAILS FROM NAHT PRESS PACKET:
Bank of America pretax revenue for 2009: $4.2 Billion
Bank of America total assets: $2.2 TRILLION
Bank of America taxes paid 2009: ZERO
Bank of America bailout funds received 2009: $45 BILLION
Bank of America tax deductions 2009: $2.1 billion
Bank of America foreign tax havens used: 115
Proposed tax breaks for the rich in the Ryan budget: $4.4 Billion
Proposed budget cuts for HUD: $5.5 Billion.
This means if Bank of America and ONLY Bank of America paid taxes at the rate you or I would for that same $4.2 billion in income, a quarter of that HUD budget cut could be restored. Three more such corporations starting to pay taxes would mean no HUD budget cuts would be “needed.”
Locally in DC, NAHT says if corporations “paid their fair share” of taxes in DC, the DC government could have avoided the past round of service cuts and pay freezes-and still ended up with a $400M surplus instead of a deficit!