Author’s note-This is the first web only Thoughts from Under the Hat written since I left the news business.
To some, it was a way to expand options and purchase a profitable company.
To cynics, it was a way to hide corporate profits from the American tax man.
Either way, it was big business news this week when Burger King announced a three billion dollar purchase of the Canadian Tim Horton’s chain of donut and coffee shops.
We, of course, have both chains operating in our area.
The company took the standard approach of saying that it was a good opportunity to acquire a good business that had grown with a number of stateside openings in recent years.
But it also marks a growing corporate tradition of making money in the United States and then investing those dollars in a foreign company and in the process by-passing a heavy tax burden of as much as 35 percent.
This is by no means an isolated incident. Many corporations, including our friends at General Electric have invested billions overseas and reaped those rewards.
It’s even drawing the ire of President Obama who stated publicly that losing taxes on all that money leaves the burden for the rest of us.
And no, there wasn’t any mention of the government spending less.
So while it’s easy to blame the big, bad corporate monster we should realize companies are only doing what’s allowed by law, the same as you or I would do every April.
So the next time you pop a Tim Bit with a sip of Joe, remember that for now at least, they’re having it their way.