Blog Post by: Edward D. Kleinbard, on May 17, 2013
This paper uses Starbucks Corporation, the premier roaster, marketer and retailer of specialty coffee in the world, as an example of stateless income tax planning in action. “Stateless income” comprises income derived for tax purposes by a multinational group from business activities in a country other than the domicile of the group’s ultimate parent company, but which is subject to tax only in a jurisdiction that is neither the source of the factors of production through which the income was derived, nor the domicile of the group’s parent company.
Blog Post by: Jeffrey Laurenti, on May 16, 2013
As pressures mount in Washington for a more aggressive American involvement on behalf of at least some rebel groups in Syria, President Obama has seemed intent on proving the Nobel committee was farsighted in awarding him its peace prize four years ago.
He sent Secretary of State John Kerry to Moscow this month with an initiative to re-engage diplomatically with Russia to end the war, through an international conference in June. It could not come soon enough. The Syrian government has, by all accounts, begun to win back some of its lost ground, worries are mounting about an increasing dominance of rebel militias by Islamic extremists, and a United Nations vote yesterday shows eroding support for the rebel side in notable quarters of the international community.
Today, after meeting with Turkish prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in the White House, Obama turned aside calls for arming Syrian rebels, noting, "There is no magic formula for dealing with an extraordinary violent and difficult situation like Syria's." His view was echoed during the day by Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper, normally a conservative darling. "I would urge on the president extraordinary caution," Harper told a New York audience at the Council on Foreign Relations. "Arming unnamed people is extremely risky."
Blog Post by: Peter Osnos, on May 15, 2013
This week's revelation that the Department of Justice has secretly obtained Associated Press telephone records from 2012 reaffirms the argument made by venerable First Amendment lawyer James C. Goodale last month: that "the fight for freedom of the press never ends even under a president previously thought to be friendly to the cause." In fact, Goodale has been increasingly critical of the Obama administration's pursuit of whistleblowers.
Goodale, with a career spanning over fifty years, is unusually well-placed to make this case. He, after all, was the general counsel at the New York Times when that paper published the Pentagon Papers in June 1971. His memoir Fighting for the Press: The Inside Story of the Pentagon Papers and Other Battles (CUNY Journalism Press), published last month, provides an inside account of the intense struggle inside the publication of one of the most famous classified-document leaks in history.
Blog Post by: Richard C. Leone, on May 14, 2013
In Washington and in most state capitals, fierce political battles are underway challenging once broadly accepted public policies. Underlying the current sharp divisions over fundamental questions is the widening fissure between the two parties. It's fashionable to describe this development as the result of a more or less symmetrical shift—with Democrats moving to the left while Republicans move to the right. I guess this approach is intended to make the whole thing look reasonable and any analysis of the shift appear nonpartisan. But whatever the reasoning at work, the conclusion is just plain wrong. Democrats have not moved to the left, if anything they have moved to the right—but not so fast or as far as Republicans.
Blog Post by: Moshe Marvit, on May 14, 2013
In April, the Obama administration finally filed an appeal with the Supreme Court over the D.C. Circuit’s Noel Canning decision which invalidated Obama’s recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB).
That’s the legal.
The political is that no matter how the court case is resolved the most recent era of the NLRB is likely over. But if history is any guide, then Democrats will continue to act as if the old rules still apply, while Republicans forge ahead with a new set of rules.
Blog Post by: Thérèse Postel, on May 14, 2013
Yesterday in Foreign Policy, Thanassis Cambanis discussed the possibility that the civil war in Syria may become Iran’s Vietnam.
Cambanis’ argument is twofold. Iran, already suffering from sanctions, is spending untold millions propping up the al-Assad regime. Outside of monetary concerns, and its loss of an IRGC member in mid-February, Iran has squandered much of its influence in the region. Arab allies, like Hamas, have distanced themselves from Tehran while Hezbollah, Iran’s most potent ally in the region, is losing some of its credibility as a resistance force and is becoming viewed more and more as a Shia sectarian outfit.
Blog Post by: Halley Potter, on May 9, 2013
If you’re poor, it’s already pretty hard to get into a good college. But now it seems that a lot of colleges are actually loading the dice even more in favor of the wealthiest students. For example:
But for advocates of increasing college access and equity, an even more troubling trend is colleges’ continued reliance on early admissions to boost their “yield,” or the percentage of admitted students who ultimately enroll.
As my colleague Richard D. Kahlenberg has noted, early admissions programs consistently disadvantage low-income students, who are less likely to have access to the advising and information needed to find out about the programs and apply in time.
Blog Post by: Peter Osnos, on May 8, 2013
I lost my cell phone last week, and immediately went into a pronounced tailspin. In a hurry to make an appointment, I must have left the phone—an iPhone 5 Black 32GB—on the top of the car as I pulled out of the driveway. Within minutes, I realized that the phone wasn’t where I usually put it. I doubled back in the vain hope that the phone would turn up. It did not. The sense of loss was particularly acute because I had not downloaded the crucial app for such circumstances—“Find iPhone”—reachable through iCloud.com. What a great and comforting asset this app could have been—with a tap or two, I would have been able to locate the device (everyone else in my office with an iPhone seemed to have it). The lack of this single application added to my sense of ignominy, and was a lesson in keeping up with the pace of new features. Fortunately, I did have insurance, and for $199 the replacement arrived overnight. With the assistance of colleagues and efficiency at My Verizon, I was able to recover all my contacts, e-mail and calendars. Even my suspended phone number was restored.
Blog Post by: The Century Foundation, on May 6, 2013
This week’s #TCFBest winner comes to us from Foreign Policy’s David Rothkopf (@djrothkopf), whose essay, “The Balance of Power” laments the “epoch-long war on a people here, an effort to hold back the economic—and social—progress of the majority of humanity.”
Blog Post by: Halley Potter, on May 6, 2013
How does poverty affect education? This month, Educational Leadership magazine tackles this question, examining the many “Faces of Poverty” in our nation’s schools. My contribution to the issue (“Boosting Achievement by Pursuing Diversity”) outlines the case for socioeconomic integration as an effective strategy to reduce the achievement gap. I argue that:
Although few policymakers and wonks are talking about it, a small but growing number of schools are attempting to boost the achievement of low-income students by shifting enrollment to place more low-income students in mixed-income schools. Socioeconomic integration is an effective way to tap into the academic benefits of having high-achieving peers, an engaged community of parents, and high-quality teachers.
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