Saturday, July 19, 2008

Who wouldn't want to pay their fair share?

Former N.J. Rep. Jim Courter (right), it seems.

Lucy Komisar reports that the Federal Communications Commission has fined Courter's New Jersey telecom company, IDT, $1.3 million for failing to file a contract for telephone service to Haiti in 2004.

Seems the man who's John McCain's biggest presidential campaign fundraiser in New Jersey found a novel way to conspire with a dictator and avoid paying due taxes at the same time.

Its work with Haiti has been put under scrutiny since a former employee, Michael Jewett, then IDT’s manager for the Caribbean, sued the company. His suit claims he was fired when he balked at negotiating a scheme that routed a portion of the company’s long distance revenue from Haiti calls to a shell company owned by then-president Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

Jewett’s suit alleges that the deal cut IDT’s long-distance payments to Haiti to 8.75 cents a minute, from 23 cents, the legal tariff, which mainline U.S. carriers such as AT&T were paying.

Payments went to an offshore shell company, Mount Salem in the Turks & Caicos, which sent 3 cents to Aristide and the rest to the Haiti telecommunications company.

Courter, a former New Jersey Republican congressman, is one of 20 McCain national finance co-chairs, and joined the campaign in February 2007. He’s a “Trailblazer” for McCain, meaning he raised at least $100,000. The IDT PAC has contributed $84,850 in 2008.
So, this is the kind of economy a McCain administration would endorse? He who can better outsmart the tax system is rewarded, while a bigger portion of the burden falls on the shoulders of us common wage earners?

Read Komisar's full report here.

(Getty picture cropped from Komisar's blog.)

Friday, July 18, 2008

Welcome to the Jersey Shore

This is funny, but seriously, most of us here do welcome any visitors to come enjoy our beaches and restaurants, while the rest of us jealous suckers work our butts off.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Happy Indie Day

Flash back to 1982 (thanks, Crooks and Liars blog)