But He’s a Billionaire So It’s Okay
One of the great tax benefits rich people get is to set up a foundation. They get a big tax deduction and still get to control the assets donated to the foundation. In the case of Carl Icahn this means taking a so-called ‘loan’ of over $100 million from his foundation.
“Hundreds of charities lend money to their officials. Most loans are relatively small and typically cover expenses such as relocation costs and life-insurance premiums.
Then there are $118.7 million in loans to billionaire Carl Icahn from a charity he started, a sum that dwarfs most others.
The loans came from the Foundation for a Greater Opportunity, which Mr. Icahn set up to support educational institutions. It was initially funded through a tax-deductible donation of shares in an Icahn-owned railroad-equipment company.”
So why did he do this? Well to get back control, make a lot of money, and just for fun, stiff the charities his foundation could have but didn’t benefit.
“Years later, at the time of the company’s initial public offering, Mr. Icahn bought the shares back. Instead of paying for them, he gave the charity IOUs. The purchase enabled Mr. Icahn to hold a controlling interest in the company after the public offering and gave him a chance to invest his money elsewhere for better returns.
Benefits to the charity were less clear. It eventually got its money back, with interest, but for more than 10 years couldn’t earn potentially higher returns or use the cash to make grants.”
Icahn is one of the persons Trump has praised as a great deal maker and someone who belongs in the Trump administration. We could not agree more with the latter, someone who cheats a foundation is perfect for Trump. As for the former, well cheating charities out of benefits while taking a big tax deduction, just business as usual for the greedy bastards like Icahn.