5 Million Farmers Sue Monsanto for $7.7 Billion

by Anthony Gucciardi
June 5th, 2012 | Updated 11/02/2012 at 6:08 pm

Launching a lawsuit against the very company that is responsible for a farmer suicide every 30 minutes, 5 million farmers are now suing Monsanto for as much as 6.2 billion euros (around 7.7 billion US dollars). The reason? As with many other cases, such as the ones that led certain farming regions to be known as the ‘suicide belt’, Monsanto has been reportedly taxing the farmers to financial shambles with ridiculous royalty charges. The farmers state that Monsanto has been unfairly gathering exorbitant profits each year on a global scale from “renewal” seed harvests, which are crops planted using seed from the previous year’s harvest.

The practice of using renewal seeds dates back to ancient times, but Monsanto seeks to collect massive royalties and put an end to the practice. Why? Because Monsanto owns the very patent to the genetically modified seed, and is charging the farmers not only for the original crops, but the later harvests as well. Eventually, the royalties compound and many farmers begin to struggle with even keeping their farm afloat. It is for this reason that India slammed Monsanto with groundbreaking ‘biopiracy’ charges in an effort to stop Monsanto from ‘patenting life’.

Jane Berwanger, a lawyer for the farmers who went on record regarding the case, told the Associted Press:

“Monsanto gets paid when it sell the seeds. The law gives producers the right to multiply the seeds they buy and nowhere in the world is there a requirement to pay (again). Producers are in effect paying a private tax on production.”

The findings echo what thousands of farmers have experienced in particularly poor nations, where many of the farmers are unable to stand up to Monsanto. Back in 2008, the Daily Mail covered what is known as the ‘GM Genocide’, which is responsible for taking the lives of over 17,683 Indian farmers in 2009 alone. After finding that their harvests were failing and they started to enter economic turmoil, the farmers began ending their own lives — oftentimes drinking the very same insecticide that Monsanto provided them with.

As the information continues to surface on Monsanto’s crimes, further lawsuits will begin to take effect. After it was ousted in January that Monsanto was running illegal ‘slave-like’ working rings, more individuals became aware of just how seriously Monsanto seems to disregard their workers — so why would they care for the health of their consumers? In April, another group of farmers sued Monsanto for ‘knowingly poisoning’ workers and causing ‘devastating birth defects’.

Will endless lawsuits from millions of seriously affected individuals be the end of Monsanto?

5 Million Farmers Sue Monsanto for $7.7 Billion.

Ron Paul’s 0% Tax Proposal Would Create Most Jobs “In History of the World”

As The Wall Street Journal’s Stephen Moore explained on FOX Business to Judge Andrew Napolitano after Monday night’s debate:

Judge Napolitano: But the biggest sound bite of last night comes from another cowboy from Texas. Congressman Ron Paul, whos tax ideas outgunned his opponents.

Ron Paul: We should have the lowest tax that we’ve ever had, and up till 1913 it was 0%. What’s so bad about that?

Debate moderator: So you’re answer is 0?

RP: Zero

Judge Napolitano: Zero! Joining me now to discuss abolishing the income tax is a man who’s no stranger to studying and analyzing taxes. He’s Stephen Moore, head of the editorial board of the Wall Street Journal.

Judge Napolitano: Can we take Congressman Paul seriously at his word? That were he to be nominated and elected President, he would move to reduce the income tax rates to zero, or as he says, gradually abolish the income tax, shrink the government down to its Constitutional size, and force it to go to other resources for cash.

Stephen Moore: This is a point Ron Paul made very effectively last night, which was for the first roughly 130 or 140 years of our nation we didn’t have an income tax, and yet we did have a prosperous country, we got richer every year, and so there’s no reason we can’t imagine what America would be like without an income tax.

Stephen Moore: As an economist, can you imagine America’s competitive position in the world if Ron Paul were able to get our income tax rate down to zero, when other countries have 30, 40, 50% rates… you would see the most insourcing of jobs into America in the history of the world.

Ron Paul's 0% Tax Proposal Would Create Most Jobs "In History of the World" | Ron Paul 2012 Presidential Campaign CommitteeRon Paul 2012 Presidential Campaign Committee.

Over Two-Thirds Of Corporations Pay No Federal Corporate Income Tax

First Posted: 01/10/12 01:03 PM ET Updated: 01/10/12 06:17 PM ET

At a time when the federal government is starved for cash — and facing layoffs and cuts in services across the board — more and more corporations are sidestepping their traditional tax rate and keeping millions of dollars for themselves.

The number of U.S. corporations structuring their businesses in such a way that they can avoid higher taxes has skyrocketed in the past quarter century, The Wall Street Journal reports.

In 1986, about 24 percent of corporations were what’s known as nontaxable businesses — meaning the companies themselves pay no federal income taxes — instead passing on the earnings to individual investors to pay taxes on. By 2008, these businesses accounted for about 69 percent of all corporations, a designation that can save companies hundreds of millions of dollars in a single year

Advocates for the business community have expressed frustration with the country’s 35 percent corporate income tax rate, calling it unreasonably high. In practice, though, it’s common for big businesses to pay much less, thanks to a cornucopia of tax-code loopholes and exemptions won by lobbyists.

The issue of corporate tax participation has become especially pressing in recent years, as the country struggles to manage its ballooning deficits. Corporate taxes for non-financial companies have fallen more than 13 percent since 2007, according to Bloomberg. At the same time, the national debt grew to $15.23 trillion from $9.13 trillion — a number larger than the economy itself.

According to a recent analysis of nearly 300 Fortune 500 companies by the Citizens for Tax Justice, the average company was paying just 18.3 percent in taxes — a little more than half the official rate. And by using techniques like industry subsidies, stock option packages, and moving assets overseas where they can’t be taxed, 30 companies mentioned in the report — including Wells Fargo, Verizon, Boeing and General Electric — didn’t pay a cent in federal taxes in 2008, 2009 or 2010, the report found.

The phenomenon affects state income taxes as well as federal. Last month, another study from the Center for Tax Justice found that corporate tax avoidance had cost states a combined $42.7 billion between 2008 and 2010 — a period when budget shortfalls forced states to cut spending for health care, public schools and care for the elderly and disabled.

Over Two-Thirds Of Corporations Pay No Federal Corporate Income Tax.

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