NO ADVERTISING, GOVERNMENT OR CORPORATE FUNDING

  • Latest News
  • Pitch a Story
  • Work with a Journalist
  • Join the Blog Squad
  • Afghanistan
  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Baltimore
  • Canada
  • Egypt
  • Europe
  • Latin America
  • Middle East
  • Russia
  • Economy
  • Environment
  • Health Care
  • Military
  • Occupy
  • Organize This
  • Reality Asserts Itself
  • US Politics
  • Video Game and Tax Day Actions Target Corporate "Tax Evaders"


    Nicole Tichon and Gan Golan: By projecting a Tax Evader video game on the side of banks and big corporate buildings, actions aim to focus public attention on banks and big companies that pay low to no taxes -   April 23, 13
    Members don't see ads. If you are a member, and you're seeing this appeal, click here

    Share to Facebook Share to Twitter


    I support The Real News Network because it lets viewers voice their uncensored opinions. - David Pear
    Log in and tell us why you support TRNN

    Bio

    Nicole Tichon is the Executive Director of Tax Justice Network USA, which is member of the larger international Tax Justice Network. 

    Prior to joining TJN USA, Nicole was the Tax and Budget Reform Advocate for the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG). U.S. PIRG is a non-profit, non-partisan federation of public interest advocacy groups that take on powerful interests on behalf of their members. Prior to joining U.S. PIRG, Nicole worked for Deloitte Consulting, in the Federal Financial Services Integration and the State and Local Government practices. While at Deloitte, Nicole was a program and performance management specialist, providing process, technical and budget evaluation tools, as well as strategic planning services to agency executives at all levels of government. 

    Gan Golan are the authors of the New York Times bestseller Goodnight Bush and the fearless, provocative, forthcoming book The Adventures of Unemployed Man.

    Transcript

    Video Game and Tax Day Actions Target Corporate PAUL JAY, SENIOR EDITOR, TRNN: Welcome to The Real News Network. I'm Paul Jay in Baltimore.

    In cities across the country, there were actions labeled tax dodgers, tax evaders, all about highlighting corporate tax evasion.

    Now joining us are two people that involved were involved in this campaign.

    From Washington, D.C. is Nicole Tichon. She's director of the Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency Coalition and Tax Justice Network U.S.A. She's been a legislative aid on banking issues in Congress and spent several years at Deloitte Consulting, working in their financial services integration unit.

    And also joining us, from New York, is Gan Golan. He's a New York Times bestselling author and artist and activist who uses creativity to amplify the fight for economic justice. Last year he created something called the tax dodgers baseball. And you may not believe it, but they now have their own exhibit at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown.

    Thanks very much to both of you for joining us.

    GAN GOLAN, AUTHOR AND ACTIVIST: Glad to be here.

    JAY: So, Gan, give us a sense of what's been going on. Describe some of the actions.

    GOLAN: Last week there's been a whole series of creative actions taking place across the country with a very simple point, which is that why are we even talking about making cuts to Social Security and other basic services before going after the corporate tax evaders that have essentially stolen hundreds of billions of dollars out of our budget and our economy.

    And to shine a light on these corporate tax evaders, we've done a parody of the classic video game Space Invaders and turned all those little alien robots into the corporations that are evading taxes. And we created a video game that's online at TaxEvaders.net.

    And in combination with that, we have projection teams in several cities across the country who are projecting the video game onto the side of the buildings of those corporations and having crowds of people in the street play that game and blasting those corporate tax evaders right on the side of their buildings.

    We also have what are called overpass light brigades, which are groups of people with these illuminated letters that spell out messages on the top of overpasses and other public spaces who are spelling out in lights things like "Tax evader GE", "Tax evader Bank of America", and things like that.

    And so we're really bringing a lot of light to the subject, you could say.

    JAY: Nicole, Gan uses the word these corporations stole, you know, millions of dollars. But they didn't really steal it, did they? It's legal what they did. The problem you're raising is that it is legal.

    NICOLE TICHON, EXEC. DIR., TAX JUSTICE NETWORK U.S.A.: The issue is that a lot of things that used to be legal are no longer, such as child labor and things like that. And just because it's legal doesn't mean that it's right. And what we need to do is focus on those who are making the laws and those who can change the law to basically close the loopholes that [incompr.] corporations are able to take advantage of.

    JAY: So give some examples of what you're talking about.

    TICHON: Sure. You have corporations such as Apple and Google and Pfizer who make a lot of money here in the United States, but they will shift [incompr.] claiming that their intellectual property is housed in another country with a lower tax rate, so that all of the business that they do in the states, you know, taking advantage of our consumer base and taking advantage of our market and, you know, all the things that make it great to do business here, but that are in fact dodging their taxes by saying that they're either headquartered in another country or that the profits are in fact booked in another country, and that's just not true.

    JAY: Gan, in terms of your actions and what's going on politically, does this--people have been aware of this for quite a while, the way this copyright shenanigan works and offshoring of these companies. Is there any movement taking place to do anything about it?

    GOLAN: People are getting angrier and angrier, particularly in light of all these cuts that are being proposed, and we're being told, oh, there's this huge amount of debt that is forcing us to cut all these basic services. The truth is we have plenty of money. It's just sitting in the Cayman Islands. And I think that's what's making people angry, that every year they are working hard and paying their fair share of taxes, and that's a sacrifice that people are willing to make to pay to support the common good and keep this country running. And I think it really angers them that these corporations, some of them pay nothing. Some of them actually pay less than nothing and get tax rebates back. So I think there's a greater public anger that's growing the more people are aware of it, but also the harder times that people are having and still finding a way to pay their fare share.

    JAY: Nicole, President Obama has talked a bit about some of this tax loopholes that need to be closed. On the other hand, he's in support of lowering corporate tax rates. What do you make of the Obama administration's role in all of this?

    TICHON: It's rather disappointing. I don't understand why corporations are left out of this equation. You know, their contribution to revenues, you know, compared to what individuals are putting forth and people who are working and putting money into the payroll taxes is abysmal. It's at its lowest point in the last 50 years. And the Obama administration is basically giving them a free pass in a way by saying that if they close the loopholes, well, don't worry about it, you know, we'll make up for it in another way.

    And that's something we just do not support. And when we're in a situation where corporations are already paying in the single digits or no money at all, you know, as big as GE and Google and Apple [incompr.] record profits, and we're not even asking them to do their basic patriotic duty, and that's to pay taxes.

    JAY: And have you taken up at all the issue of estate taxes? It seems to me that's one of the more dramatic changes in how wealth is taxed over the last decade or so. Many estates don't have any estate tax at all anymore, and the federal estate tax has gone way down. Are you taking that issue up?

    TICHON: We are not, but a number of our partner organizations are, and it really runs along the same line that you're asking those to sacrifice who are still lying on the mat from the economic downturn and in fact trying to widen the loopholes and widen the benefits and give more tax breaks to those who don't need them. And we really just can't afford it.

    JAY: So, Gan, tell me a little bit more about the tactics you've been using and what kind of response you've been getting from people on the street.

    GOLAN: Well, it's actually been a lot of fun, because it's both an online campaign and a real-world campaign. One of the cool things that the website does is once you've actually succeeded at playing the video game, you can Twitter-bomb these corporations in rapid succession and just start firing Tweets straight at all of these corporations. And there have been, I think, over 10,000 Tweets that have gone at these corporations in the last couple of days. So that's one thing we're doing.

    But also we're just trying to bring public awareness. And kind of, you know, one of the great things that's happening with the video game is people are hooking them up to controllers and things on the streets. So they're not playing on a laptop. They're out in public jumping around, pumping their fists, and blasting these corporations up on the sides of these buildings. And I think it's a way that we're kind of demonstrating the kinds of actions that we need to take politically by playing this game.

    JAY: Alright. One more time. Where do people find the game?

    GOLAN: They can go to TaxEvaders.net.

    JAY: Alright. Great. Alright. Thanks, Nicole. Thank you very much, Gan.

    GOLAN: Thank you.

    TICHON: Thank you.

    JAY: And thank you for joining us on The Real News Network.

    End

    DISCLAIMER: Please note that transcripts for The Real News Network are typed from a recording of the program. TRNN cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.


    Comments

    Our automatic spam filter blocks comments with multiple links and multiple users using the same IP address. Please make thoughtful comments with minimal links using only one user name. If you think your comment has been mistakenly removed please email us at contact@therealnews.com

    Comments


    Latest Stories


    Israel Uses Refugees as "Currency" in Arms Trade with Africa
    South African Platinum Miner's Struggle Challenges ANC Leadership
    TRNN Original Report: Manning Determined to Fight Back After Army Upholds 35- Year Sentence
    Hundredth Anniversary of the Ludlow Massacre
    Important Revelations In New Leaks of CIA Torture Report
    The Bundy Ranch Standoff Demonstrates Values Shared by Corporations and the Far Right
    The Resegregation of American Schools
    The Modern History of Venezuela, Why Still So Much Crime? - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (7/9)
    What Role Has Russia Played in Eastern Ukraine?
    Can Johns Hopkins Afford to Pay A Living Wage? (2/2)
    University Sit-In Targets World's Largest Private Coal Company
    The Modern History of Venezuela and the Need for a Post-Oil Economy - Edgardo Lander on RAI (6/9)
    Can Johns Hopkins Afford to Pay A Living Wage? (1/2)
    One Percent of Environmentalists Killings Lead to Convictions
    Investigation Finds Former Ukraine President Not Responsible For Sniper Attack on Protestors
    The Modern History of Venezuela from 1973 to the Caracazo Massacre - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (3/9)
    Ukraine Transitional Gov't Moves Militarily To Reclaim Seized Buildings
    IPCC Report Flawed By Narrow Focus on Carbon Emissions
    The Modern History of Venezuela: The Bolivarian Revolution - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (5/9)
    Obama Signs Directives to Reduce the Gender Wage Gap
    Eastern Ukraine Lacks Political Representation in Kiev
    Demystifying the Role of Mitigation in the Most Recent IPCC Report
    Hypersurveillance State Won't Prevent Another Boston Marathon Bombing
    The Modern History of Venezuela from 1973 to the Caracazo Massacre - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (3/9)
    Univ. of Maine Faculty Reinstated After Students Protest Against Cuts
    The Modern History of Venezuela from 1908 to 1973 - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (2/9)
    IMF Will Address Global Inequality, Says Managing Director Christine Lagarde
    Raising Big Banks' Leverage Ratio Good, But Not Nearly Enough
    TRNN Replay: Austerity Road to 19th Century
    Has Palestinian Maneuvering Revived Peace Talks?
    Late Jackson Mayor Lumumba's Son Wins Primary to Replace His Father, Runoff Election Ahead
    Quebecers Reject PQ and Elect a Liberal Government Representing Big Business
    TRNN Debate: Decriminalization vs. Legalization
    The Beginning of the Chavez Era - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (4/9)
    "Off With His Head": Court Upholds Obama's Power to Kill
    Workers at Nation's Top Hospital Strike For Fair Wages
    From Exile to Radicalization in Venezuela - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (1/9)
    Rwanda 20 Years Later: Genocide, Western Plunder of Congo, and President Kagame
    Ukrainian Protesters in the East Demand More Autonomy From Kiev Government
    Hunger Strikers Demand President Obama Halt His Record 2 Million Deportations
    Indian Parliamentary Elections - A Primer With Vijay Prashad
    West Looks to Carve Up Ukraine & Privatize Industries Held by Kleptocrats
    Where Are Israeli-Palestinian Peace Negotiations Headed?
    The Multiple Kingdoms of Saudi Arabia (5/5)
    Do the Afghan Presidential Elections Signify Progress?
    Republican Presidential Hopefuls Pay Homage to Billionaire Casino Tycoon Sheldon Adelson
    Will Extremist Lieberman Become Israel's Next Prime Minister?
    Why do the Saudis Want the US to Attack Iran? (4/5)
    Immigrant Advocates and Families Tell President Obama 'Not One More'
    Elections, Pipelines, and Protests - The Canada Panel
    Chris Hedges on "Israel's War on American Universities"
    Baltimore Residents Decry Lack of Affordable Housing
    Yellen Talks the Talk But Will She Walk the Walk?
    Hopkins Hospital Workers Speak Out against "Poverty Wages"
    Will Venezuela's New Floating Exchange Rate Curb Inflation?
    The European Central Bank's War on Wages is Pushing Europe's Economy to the Brink
    Supreme Court Decision Opens Floodgates for More Campaign Cash
    Charles Keating, the Financier Behind the Savings and Loan Scandal, Dies at 90
    Saudi Arabia and the al-Qaeda Monster (3/5)
    Maryland Residents Voice Opposition to Natural Gas Fracking Export Facility
    Supreme Court Ruling Gives Wealthy Individuals More Influence Over Elections
    What are the Saudis Afraid Of? - Madawi Al-Rasheed (2/5)
    Baltimore's MICA Adjunct Professors Set to Vote on Unionization
    Boycott of Israel Moving to Next Level?
    Hypocrisy Dressed Up as "Realism" Justifies American Alliance with Saudi Dictatorship
    Immigration Reform in the Shadows of Cesar Chavez's Legacy
    Leaked Senate Report Shows Use of Torture As "Ineffective"
    UN Report Says Climate Change Will Threaten Food Production Worldwide
    The Hypocrisy of US Calling for Enforcement of International Law
    How the Ecuadorian Economy Grew in a Global Recession
    'Shadows of Liberty' Trailer
    Kristina Borjesson on Why CBS Shut Down Her investigation into Flight 800 (2/8)
    Glen Ford on Racism in the American Media (3/8)
    Paul Jay on What Drives Corporate Media and What Drive The Real News (4/8)
    Creating a New Media Paradigm After Citizens United (5/8)
    Should The Left Engage with the Mainstream Media? (6/8)
    What Is the Financial Backing For The Real News? (7/8)
    Standing up to Character Assassination (8/8)
    Oligarchs, Fascists and the People's Protest in Ukraine
    TRNN Debate: Is Obamacare In the Interest of Workers?
    Too-Big-To-Fail Advantage Remains Intact For Big Banks
    Obama and the Saudi Agenda
    TRNN Replay: Investigating the Saudi Government's 9/11 Connection and the Path to Disilliusionment - Sen. Graham on Reality Asserts Itself pt 1
    The Iraq War's Real Legacy
    Petitions with 100,000+ Signatures Call for Snowden's Passport to be Reinstated
    We Need to Harness People Power - Andy Shallal on Reality Asserts Itself (4/4)
    BC Pipeline Fight and Quebec Elections - The Canada Panel
    Jonathan Schell - 1943-2014: Board Member of TRNN on Why We Need The Real News
    Teachers on Strike from the UK to Argentina
    Connecticut Poised to Become First State with $10.10 Minimum Wage
    Oil Spill Threatens Wildlife and Local Economy
    DC School Test Scores Up, But Poor Black Kids Are Doing Worse - Andy Shallal on RAI (3/4)
    Obama's Proposal To End NSA Bulk Data Collection Won't Protect Privacy
    How Google, Apple & The Biggest Tech Companies Colluded to Fix Workers' Wages
    An American Should be One that Questions Their Government - Andy Shallal on RAI (2/4)
    What's Driving Putin & Obama's Posturing on Ukraine?
    Hundreds of Students & Faculty Occupy College Campus to Fight Cuts to Public Higher Ed
    Due Process 'Impossible' In Harsh Death Sentencing Of Over 500 Muslim Brotherhood Members
    Has Anglo-American Capitalism Run Out of Steam?
    Being the "Other" in America - Andy Shallal on Reality Asserts Itself (1/4)
    TRNN Debate: Should Baltimore 'Ban The Box'?
    How Fallujah Became the Iraqi Government's New Battleground
    Why I Decided to Blow the Whistle on the NSA
    NASA Climate Predictions Show Serious Threat To Humanity
    Professor Who Teaches Israel-Palestine Conflict Accuses College of Violating His Academic Freedom
    CIA and NSA Wrongdoing Requires Independent Investigation, Says Former Church Committee Staff
    Are Tuition Breaks Enough To Combat High Student Debt And Low Graduation Rates?
    Industries Across the U.S. Are Stealing Wages From Their Lowest Paid Workers
    Who In Ukraine Will Benefit From An IMF Bailout?
    NSA Recording All International Calls From U.S.
    Israel "Making Lives Miserable" for Africans, Hoping They 'Self-Deport' (2/2)
    BP Gets Green Light to Drill in Gulf, But Has Safety Improved?
    Residents Still Not Drinking Tap Water Two Months After West Virginia Spill (1/2)
    Libya's Descent Into Turmoil Three Years After NATO Intervention
    From Pipelines to Peladeau - Canadian Report
    Israel "Making Lives Miserable" for Africans, Hoping They 'Self-Deport' (1/2)
    Congressional Progressive Caucus Budget Strikes Back Against Austerity
    Libya Three Years Later - Chaos and Partition
    Why Was Gaddafi Overthrown?
    Should Ukraine and West Accept De Facto Crimea Joining Russia? (2/2)
    Tony Benn Saw Socialism as the Culmination of Democratization
    Why Didn't Bush/Cheney Attack Iran and Can Obama Make and Sell a Deal? - Gareth Porter on Reality Asserts Itself (3/3)
    After Late Mayor Lumumba is Laid to Rest, What's Next for Jackson, Mississippi? (2/2)
    Crimea Referendum: Self Determination or Big Power Manipulation? (1/2)
    Sen. Graham: President Must Side with Openness About CIA and 9/11
    Manufacturing a Narrative for War - Gareth Porter on Reality Asserts Itself (2/3)
    Protesters Hit the Streets of Brooklyn to Demand $15 Minimum Wage
    Hammer: 'Moral Bankruptcy' Behind Massive GM Recall
    White House Withholds Thousands of Documents from Senate CIA Probe
    I Grew Up Believing in Time Magazine's Version of America - Gareth Porter on RAI (1/3)
    Western European Banks Vulnerable to Ukrainian Sovereign Debt Crisis
    TRNN Debate: What's Driving Inflation in Venezuela? (2/2)
    CIA vs. Senate: Who Is Obama Protecting?
    Will Tipped Workers Get Excluded Again From Minimum Wage Hike?
    TRNN Debate: What's Driving Inflation in Venezuela? (1/2)
    After Late Mayor Lumumba is Laid to Rest, What's Next for Jackson, Mississippi?(1/2)
    TRNN Replay: A Look at Who's Poised to Become No.2 at the Fed
    How Right-Wing Nationalism Rose to Influence in Ukraine (2/2)
    Netanyahu Attacks Boycott As Campaign Enters New Phase
    Moving Towards a Police State - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (7/7)
    Fighting Reagan's Secret, Illegal Wars - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (6/7)
    Puerto Rican Independence Movement and Cuba Further Radicalized Me - Michael Ratner on RAI (5/7)
    The Butcher of Attica - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (4/7)
    MLK and a Radicalizing Moment in American History - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (3/7)

    RealNewsNetwork.com, Real News Network, Real News, Real News For Real People, IWT are trademarks and service marks of IWT.TV inc. "The Real News" is the flagship show of IWT and Real News Network.

    All original content on this site is copyright of The Real News Network.  Click here for more

    Problems with this site? Please let us know

    Linux VPS Hosting by Star Dot Hosting