On March 24, the New York Times reported that General Electric paid no taxes to the U.S. government last year — despite having reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, $5.1 billion of which came from its American operations.
Almost 1,000 people sounded off at nytimes.com, most of them expressing outrage. One commenter wrote, "If this is what's called 'class warfare,' it's pretty clear which class is under attack."
Which brings us to David Cay Johnston, who won one Pulitzer Prize and was a finalist for two more while writing about unfairness and absurdity in the U.S. tax code for the Times. These days, he teaches college and writes books that revolve around the concept of class warfare, plus columns at tax.com. Not even a week after his former employer broke the GE story, he put the finishing touches on a long-in-the-works story for the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies.
That's what you'll find starting here. We'd be remiss if we didn't warn you that the first sentence does include the phrase "supply-side economics." But rest assured Johnston breaks down a dense subject into nine pretty digestible concepts, at least one of which will probably get under your skin as you watch our tax deadline near.
And if somehow that doesn't happen, try this comment from the minority on that Times story:
"Are they breaking the law? That's your only valid complaint."