Current tax law lets big companies offload fines for their own criminal conduct to taxpayers

“Do the crime, do the time,” goes the old saying.

Unless, of course, the criminals are corporate executives. In those cases, the culprits are practically always given a “Get Out of Jail Free” card.

Even the corporate crimes that produce horrible injuries, illnesses, and deaths are routinely settled by fines and payoffs. There’s often no punishment at all for the honchos who oversee what amount to crime-for-profit syndicates.

The only bit of justice in these settlements is that some of them have become quite large, with regulators imposing multibillion-dollar “punitive damages” to deter the perpetrators from doing it again.

Yet the same bad corporate actors keep at it.

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