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GE Annual Meeting Interrupted by 99 Percent Protesters

•, Common Dreams staff

Hundreds of protesters affiliated with the "99 Percent" movement disrupted the start of General Electric Co's annual shareholders' meeting in Detroit on Wednesday, in an attack on the largest U.S. conglomerate's low tax rate.

Outside Detroit's Renaissance Center, thousands more demonstrators swarmed the area, chanting "This is What Democracy Looks Like." They were surrounded by dozens of police, including three mounted units.

A 2011 report by think tank Citizens for Tax Justice reported that GE had an effective negative tax rate from 2008 through 2010. CTJ’s summary of GE’s federal income taxes over the past decade shows that:

From 2006 to 2011, GE’s net federal income taxes were negative $3.1 billion, despite $38.2 billion in pretax U.S. profits over the six years.
Over the past decade, GE’s effective federal income tax rate on its $81.2 billion in pretax U.S. profits has been at most 1.8 percent.

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