Time for the giant retailer to pay their taxes, treat workers with respect, and dump ALEC
While tourists and locals alike watched the 99% sent a message to Amazon using light and the backdrop of the Seattle Art Museum, the location of Amazon's upcoming shareholding meeting.
The messages: "Amazon Dump ALEC," "Amazon Respect Workers," and "Amazon See you on Thursday."
Thursday morning hundreds are expected for a major rally outside of the Amazon shareholder meeting. We'll be there 8:30 am. Come join us.
"99% Theses" calling for reform of corporate behavior left for Board members & executives
In Seattle and across the country, our "99% Theses" are being left at the doors of Amazon's top executives and members of the company's Board of Directors, because board members and top executive benefit from the many indulgences this company and other large corporations receive under our unfair economic and political system. These 99% theses call for an end to corporate indulgences like tax dodging, mistreatment of workers, and support for the shadowy ultra-conservative policy group known as ALEC.
Amazon Board Members will surely hear more about these 99% issues when they attend Amazon's shareholder meeting the morning of May 24th in Seattle.
The 99% take on the "Tax Dodgers."
This weekend the 99% challenged the "Tax Dodgers" to a friendly, but contentious soccer match. Amazon only paid a 2.6% federal income tax rate by taking advantage of a loophole that treats bonuses to executives as write offs. Basically the more they dole out to their executives the less taxes they pay. It's ridiculous.
The "Tax Dodgers" tried to game the system, having extra players on the field and bringing in their own referee. They thought they could push their weight around, but the 99% dug deep and overcame the challenges to defeat them.
We will keep the momentum going to this Thursday, May 24th as we gather outside of Amazon's shareholder meeting at the Seattle Art Museum at 8:30 a.m.
We take our message to the streets.
During the afternoon rush hour on May 18th, several banners appeared over I-5 to bring attention to Amazon's corporate tax dodging, mistreatment of workers, and support for the notorious right-wing group ALEC. This is just the first event in a week of action leading up to a major rally at Amazon's May 24th shareholder meeting at the Seattle Art Museum. Click here for more info about the May 24th rally.
99% taking action all week...
Our week of banner-drops, book readings, tax dodgeball, visits to Amazon board members — and more — will culminate in a major rally outside Amazon's annual shareholder meeting on May 24th. Watch this post for updates as the week of action continues.
As Amazon executives meet to celebrate their business successes, more than 500 workers, students, civil rights activists, people of faith, and more will gather outside the meeting to tell the company they need to do more to share their success with the communities and workers who make it possible. Voices will also be raised inside the shareholder meeting to bring the issues directly before the executives and decision-makers who have chosen to take Amazon down an unaccountable path of tax-dodging, worker mistreatment, and support for ALEC, the infamous and extreme right-wing policy group. Click here for more info about the May 24th rally.
More information on Amazon 99% accountability issues:
Tax dodging: Recent figures from Citizens for Tax Justice reveal that Amazon paid an effective Federal increase rate last year of only 2.6%. They drove their rate so low by taking advantage of a loophole that gives them a $1 tax deduction for every $1 in stock options they give to executives. This continues a downward trend where their tax rate falls every year — from an 11.5% rate in 2008 to a 9.1% rate in 2009 and a 5.5% rate in 2010, despite solid profits. The corporate tax rate set in law is 35%.
Worker treatment: Two warehouse recently spoke out at the company's headquarters about harsh conditions, including indoor temperatures that rose above 100 degrees. When workers collapsed from exhaustion, the company's initial response was not to improve ventilation or install air conditioning, but simply to station paramedics outside.
Support for ALEC: Amazon is known to have been a "Director Level" sponsor of ALEC, the shadowy and extreme right-wing organization. In the wake of the Trayvon Martin shooting, ALEC has become notorious for its role in passing "Stand your ground" laws, as well as efforts to create tax loopholes, undermine workers rights, and make it harder for young people & people of color to vote. Now that the group has come under increased scrutiny, many large corporations — including McDonald's, Kraft, and others — have publicly dropped support for ALEC. However, Amazon has so far refused to publicly renounce their support.