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Five top U.S. corporations racked up millions in profits last year and paid no federal taxes. They spent money instead on political campaigns and it was money well spent. Over the last decade, Bank of America, Boeing, Chevron, ExxonMobil and General Electric handed out $78.7 million to state political campaigns and $45.3 million to federal campaigns, according to a report released Wednesday by the National Institute for Money in State Politics. In return, the corporations in 2009 won $3.7 billion in tax breaks overall and paid $0 in federal taxes. They enjoyed a combined profit of $77.16 billion in 2010.
Overall taxpayer money delivered to the Pentagon and its contractors in 2010 will add up to well more than an all-time record-breaking $1.01 trillion. As has been widely reported, Defense Secretary Robert Gates asked the new fiscal-conservative Republican Congress to consider cutting the Pentagon budget by $80 billion over the next five years, meaning the Defense budget will still rise in that time but not by as much as it would have done. Republicans derided the proposal, arguing that the country was at war and that there was plenty of spending to be cut elsewhere. As the 112th conservative Congress got underway, Colorado GOP Rep. Doug Lamborn, for example, introduced two bills that would strip public broadcasting of roughly $500 million per year. Lamborn's bills won't pass. China meantime is serious about taking over the reins of the world economy. It is spending a fraction of what the U.S. spends on Defense and double what the U.S. spends on the clean energy technologies of the future-- and it is selling those technologies and its expertise in creating them to customers around the world including to the cash-strapped U.S.A.