US Uncut is a grassroots movement taking direct action against corporate tax cheats and unnecessary and unfair public service cuts across the U.S. Washington’s proposed budget for the coming year sends a clear message: The wrath of budget cuts will fall upon the shoulders of hard-working Americans. That’s unacceptable.
Obama seeks to trim $1.1 trillion from the budget in the next ten years by cutting or eliminating over 200 federal programs, many dedicated to social services and education. For instance, it cuts in half funding to subsidize heating for low-income Americans; limits an expansion of the Pell grant program for students; and decreases Environmental Protection Agency funding by over 12%.
Meanwhile, Republicans are using their new House majority to slash spending even more brutally. The GOP has made it clear that they are bent on raiding funds for Social Security, Medicare, education; determined to kill health care reform; and gut needed investments in infrastructure, climate change and job creation, at a time when America needs it most.
These cuts will come on top of very painful austerity measures made at the state-level across our nation–-worth hundreds of billions–since the recession began.
In short, budget cuts demonstrate that Washington has abandoned ordinary Americans.
But there is an alternative: Make corporate tax avoiders pay.
Enjoying record profits and taxpayer-funded bailouts as the economy slowly recovers from a financial crisis, nearly two-thirds of US corporations don’t pay any income taxes, instead opting to abuse tax loopholes and offshore tax havens. According to this study from the non-partisan Government Accountability Office, 83 of the top 100 publicly traded corporations that operate in the US exploit corporate tax havens. Since 2009, America’s most profitable companies such as ExxonMobil, General Electric, Bank of America and Citigroup all paid a grand total of $0 in federal income taxes to Uncle Sam. Tax havens alone account for up to $1 trillion in tax revenue lost every decade, money that could be invested in K-12 education, colleges, public health, job creation and hundreds of other worthy public programs.
If we pay our taxes, why don’t they? If corporations profit here, shouldn’t they pay here?
It’s time for ordinary Americans to fight back and demand an end to the corporate tax avoidance. Join US Uncut and together let’s make corporate tax avoiders pay.
US Uncut is a horizontal movement. There are no centrally planned protests.
US Uncut is all about action. Don’t worry if you’ve never done anything like this before- you’re not the only one. And taking action is easy!
US Uncut is a decentralized organization – no one from on high plans your events, it’s all up to you. Post an action, make some signs, & people will join you – it’s fun!
Planning And Taking Action In 5 Easy Steps
- Choose your target. Go to the “Targets” tab on the website to find a list of and information on America’s most egregious tax dodgers.
- Plan your specific action. Find one of those companies’ local branches in your community. (No branches in your community? Local organizers are encouraged to act autonomously and choose a different target if necessary.)
- Post the action and spread the word. You can post your action on our Action lists page. From there, tell friends, family members, coworkers, business associates, classmates, roommates, neighbors, teammates, fellow churchgoers, significant others and everyone else you know about your action! When you have a chance, call/email your local newspapers, radio stations and TV stations.
- Use online tools if possible. On twitter, mention @usuncut and use the hashtag #usuncut in related posts. Create a facebook event and invite your friends, then link it to your action on the site. Use Foursquare to make it known what you’re doing, and reach out to local political blogs to get people interested.
- Do it already! On your planned day of action, go to your target and stage your action. Emphasis is on creativity and nonviolent, direct action. Make sure you print out some flyers with useful information on your target’s tax dodging activities, tie that to low tax revenues for your state, and how that relates to unnecessary budget cuts. hand it out to everyone you see!
Suggestions and Reminders
- Remember to bring a video or photo camera. If it isn’t captured in video or photographs, it didn’t happen. News organizations will often take video and photos from this website – so it is vital that you document your actions so we can spread our message. After your action, simply go back to your action listing on this site, and you will find buttons available to ‘Submit a report’ and ‘Add photos/video.’ You can link to your images on Flickr, your Facebook photo albums, or even your videos uploaded to Youtube and Vimeo. Show off to everyone what you’ve accomplished!
- Be creative, think outside the box. US Uncut follows UK Uncut’s example of creative protests. For one example, watch their video here for how to stage a bail-in at your target corporation on the day of action you’ve planned. Make it fun and interesting!
- Report back afterwards. Submit a report on your action listing page to describe your action. What happened? What was the best part? What was the worst part? How many people showed up? What would you do better next time? Share your thoughts and ideas so we may learn from each other.
Engaging in civil disobedience? It’s important to know the legal resources you have available to you.
The only and best network of Lawyers that support Nonviolent Direct Action (both as Legal Observers and as Criminal Defenders) is the National Lawyers Guild. Folks coordinating these kind of actions should make contact directly with the NLG folks in their cities/regions by using this handy little web tool:
NLG Chapter Map
Guidelines for Nonviolent Direct Action
3 rules for dealing with police and property:
- Don’t touch police officers (it’s assault and it’s a felony)
- Don’t glue locks (it’s property destruction – and possibly abduction if you lock innocent bystanders into the bank with you).
- Don’t damage property.
MOST IMPORTANTLY – Have Fun! Cops & Employees are not your enemies, so be pleasant.