Author Topic: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition  (Read 1167 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline rlabs19

  • Stateless
  • *
  • Posts: 199
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #30 on: July 06, 2018, 08:27:48 AM »
My most unpopular opinion is that Zooropa is one of their worst albums. Only like Stay, all the other songs I don't care for. I feel that Pop is a better album, but still has some songs that I will just never understand.

Offline the_chief

  • Headache in a Suitcase
  • *
  • Posts: 353
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #31 on: July 06, 2018, 08:42:53 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
I appreciate the OP's point that unpopular opinions does not necessarily mean negative opinions. So on to my own unpopular opinions (at least unpopular to some).

* U2's last couple of albums, esp. SOE, are very high quality and stack up well against the rest of their catalog.
* The 90s were not a good decade for them overall. They did create Achtung Baby, which is a great album, but the other albums they produced are not among their best.
* The criticism that U2 receives for their "tax avoidance" is not only absurd, it is harmful. U2 get bashed far more than other bands, even though they haven't done anything worse and, in fact, have done very little wrong at all.  The reason is their philanthropy and social activism. Those who get off on hating U2 for their "hypocrisy" are discouraging people with money and fame from using those resources on behalf of those who have nothing. Others in a similar position to U2 can look around and realize, "Hey, I can be a selfish pig with my money, and treat my family and associates like dirt, and it won't hurt my reputation. But I better stay the hell away from saving people dying of AIDS and starvation or I'll earn myself no end of grief!"

I totally disagree with you re your first comment, but musical taste is subjective so fair enough. But really? Stack up well- really really?

I totally disagree with you re the 90's - AB is a universally acclaimed classic album and rightfully so. Followed by the ground breaking Zoo TV tour and followed by Zooropa which was  equally successful and equally amazing. Zooropa album has some major U2 highlights- the title track, Stay ( surely one of the best ever U2 songs of all time),  Lemon. It's pretty sonically  experimental ( as were the visuals) and yeah, the latter half isn't anywhere near as good as AB but pees all over anything they have done in the last decade. Pop has some great songs on it and amazing guitar sounds, but didn't translate particularly well to the live arena. The UK end of the tour suffered badly by coinciding with Princess Diana's death which put a bit of a subdued feel to it all. But has some great songs on it nonetheless-- Mofo, Gone, Last Night on Earth, Miami but definitely not a classic U2 album. And Adam was busy putting the rock-n-roll into U2 then too--supermodels, missed gigs etc :-) I can tell you stacks of non-U2 fans gave them plenty of deference in the whole AB/ Zooropa early 90's era.

I totally disagree with you re the tax avoidance. It is not absurd at all. The U2 tax loophole can be explained as follows:
Rock bands such as U2 and the Rolling Stones take advantage of this loophole to manage royalty payments from their records and performances.
The bands license their copyright to companies that they set up in the Netherlands, which in turn license it to companies in other countries.
While the Netherlands companies receive the bands’ global royalties, they only pay tax on what is earned in the Netherlands itself, allowing the groups to cut their tax bills.
To give an example of this, pre-this, U2 Ltd paid tax of $46500 in Ireland. The next year, they paid $1.1m after the Irish govt. capped the tax relief on royalty income. 3 months later, U2 moved their tax affairs to The Netherlands

Frankly, they should be paying the  appropriate rate of corporation tax on the profits generated by the revenues in any particular country in which they 'trade' or generate income. And yes, it's not the 'rules' , but they would be setting a great example ( a Christian example, even lol)

Fair? Or sensible taxation? The rules are set by the mega-rich to benefit the mega-rich. Except Bono continually pontificates about debt relief and third world aid whilst continuing to do anything to minimise his own tax liabilities. Shopping centres in Lithuania--really? What about championing ethical investing? Adam Clayton is so rich he didn't even notice his maid stealing £400K from him until it was too late. The Edge embarks on a mission to build property on a protected beach front-- for what? To sell real estate? Larry Mullen sues his accountant because his investments lost 11m Euros. Bono has consistently called on the Irish government to do more to help developing nations. That he is doing so while at the same time doing anything he can to remove cash from the Irish tax coffers is what annoys people - in Ireland especially. There was an interview on Irish TV where Bono talked about how people need to get over any “warm, fuzzy feeling” they might have about the band. They’re a business, he insisted. It is interesting that he spoke on behalf of Ireland in their bid to get a seat on the UN Security Council . Ireland only contributes 0.4% of GDP to foreign aid, well below the target of 0.7% ( which hardly anyone does, but the UK does). Norway- one of Ireland's competitors for the seat-- contributes 1.05%. Perhaps U2 should make up the Irish shortfall--that would give them real kudos.

And forgive my cynicism, but how many people have U2 personally saved from dying of AIDs or starvation? Really? (again)

Re the tax thing...

Does that mean every band that has ever existed should get the same criticism?
Literally every band in the 70s and 80s were tax exiles.

As I said previously, three of them live here. The three of them pay taxes as residents of the country. I can understand people's noses been put out of joint over the hypocrisy but, as I asked before of someone, if your business stood to pay less tax elsewhere, would you take up that opportunity?

After all, everyone else is at it...

Offline Luzita

  • Headache in a Suitcase
  • *
  • Posts: 315
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #32 on: July 06, 2018, 09:15:53 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
I appreciate the OP's point that unpopular opinions does not necessarily mean negative opinions. So on to my own unpopular opinions (at least unpopular to some).

* U2's last couple of albums, esp. SOE, are very high quality and stack up well against the rest of their catalog.
* The 90s were not a good decade for them overall. They did create Achtung Baby, which is a great album, but the other albums they produced are not among their best.
* The criticism that U2 receives for their "tax avoidance" is not only absurd, it is harmful. U2 get bashed far more than other bands, even though they haven't done anything worse and, in fact, have done very little wrong at all.  The reason is their philanthropy and social activism. Those who get off on hating U2 for their "hypocrisy" are discouraging people with money and fame from using those resources on behalf of those who have nothing. Others in a similar position to U2 can look around and realize, "Hey, I can be a selfish pig with my money, and treat my family and associates like dirt, and it won't hurt my reputation. But I better stay the hell away from saving people dying of AIDS and starvation or I'll earn myself no end of grief!"

I totally disagree with you re your first comment, but musical taste is subjective so fair enough. But really? Stack up well- really really?

I totally disagree with you re the 90's - AB is a universally acclaimed classic album and rightfully so. Followed by the ground breaking Zoo TV tour and followed by Zooropa which was  equally successful and equally amazing. Zooropa album has some major U2 highlights- the title track, Stay ( surely one of the best ever U2 songs of all time),  Lemon. It's pretty sonically  experimental ( as were the visuals) and yeah, the latter half isn't anywhere near as good as AB but pees all over anything they have done in the last decade. Pop has some great songs on it and amazing guitar sounds, but didn't translate particularly well to the live arena. The UK end of the tour suffered badly by coinciding with Princess Diana's death which put a bit of a subdued feel to it all. But has some great songs on it nonetheless-- Mofo, Gone, Last Night on Earth, Miami but definitely not a classic U2 album. And Adam was busy putting the rock-n-roll into U2 then too--supermodels, missed gigs etc :-) I can tell you stacks of non-U2 fans gave them plenty of deference in the whole AB/ Zooropa early 90's era.

I totally disagree with you re the tax avoidance. It is not absurd at all. The U2 tax loophole can be explained as follows:
Rock bands such as U2 and the Rolling Stones take advantage of this loophole to manage royalty payments from their records and performances.
The bands license their copyright to companies that they set up in the Netherlands, which in turn license it to companies in other countries.
While the Netherlands companies receive the bands’ global royalties, they only pay tax on what is earned in the Netherlands itself, allowing the groups to cut their tax bills.
To give an example of this, pre-this, U2 Ltd paid tax of $46500 in Ireland. The next year, they paid $1.1m after the Irish govt. capped the tax relief on royalty income. 3 months later, U2 moved their tax affairs to The Netherlands

Frankly, they should be paying the  appropriate rate of corporation tax on the profits generated by the revenues in any particular country in which they 'trade' or generate income. And yes, it's not the 'rules' , but they would be setting a great example ( a Christian example, even lol)

Fair? Or sensible taxation? The rules are set by the mega-rich to benefit the mega-rich. Except Bono continually pontificates about debt relief and third world aid whilst continuing to do anything to minimise his own tax liabilities. Shopping centres in Lithuania--really? What about championing ethical investing? Adam Clayton is so rich he didn't even notice his maid stealing £400K from him until it was too late. The Edge embarks on a mission to build property on a protected beach front-- for what? To sell real estate? Larry Mullen sues his accountant because his investments lost 11m Euros. Bono has consistently called on the Irish government to do more to help developing nations. That he is doing so while at the same time doing anything he can to remove cash from the Irish tax coffers is what annoys people - in Ireland especially. There was an interview on Irish TV where Bono talked about how people need to get over any “warm, fuzzy feeling” they might have about the band. They’re a business, he insisted. It is interesting that he spoke on behalf of Ireland in their bid to get a seat on the UN Security Council . Ireland only contributes 0.4% of GDP to foreign aid, well below the target of 0.7% ( which hardly anyone does, but the UK does). Norway- one of Ireland's competitors for the seat-- contributes 1.05%. Perhaps U2 should make up the Irish shortfall--that would give them real kudos.

And forgive my cynicism, but how many people have U2 personally saved from dying of AIDs or starvation? Really? (again)

Re the tax thing...

Does that mean every band that has ever existed should get the same criticism?
Literally every band in the 70s and 80s were tax exiles.

As I said previously, three of them live here. The three of them pay taxes as residents of the country. I can understand people's noses been put out of joint over the hypocrisy but, as I asked before of someone, if your business stood to pay less tax elsewhere, would you take up that opportunity?

After all, everyone else is at it...
You are touching on the point I was trying to make. If people’s objections were truly about tax avoidance, then their criticisms should be directed towards all bands who do it, and concentrated on the worst offenders which I don’t think are U2.  The reason that U2 gets singled out is because of their philanthropy and social activism. So, truly, no good deed goes unpunished. Their critics are sending totally the wrong message.

I also wanted to ask about what you said regarding “three of them live here” by which I assume you mean Ireland. I know they all reside in other countries part of the time but I thought all four had their primary residence in Ireland. Who doesn’t?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Online Tortuga

  • Wanderer
  • *
  • Posts: 99
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #33 on: July 06, 2018, 09:44:19 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
I appreciate the OP's point that unpopular opinions does not necessarily mean negative opinions. So on to my own unpopular opinions (at least unpopular to some).

* U2's last couple of albums, esp. SOE, are very high quality and stack up well against the rest of their catalog.
* The 90s were not a good decade for them overall. They did create Achtung Baby, which is a great album, but the other albums they produced are not among their best.
* The criticism that U2 receives for their "tax avoidance" is not only absurd, it is harmful. U2 get bashed far more than other bands, even though they haven't done anything worse and, in fact, have done very little wrong at all.  The reason is their philanthropy and social activism. Those who get off on hating U2 for their "hypocrisy" are discouraging people with money and fame from using those resources on behalf of those who have nothing. Others in a similar position to U2 can look around and realize, "Hey, I can be a selfish pig with my money, and treat my family and associates like dirt, and it won't hurt my reputation. But I better stay the hell away from saving people dying of AIDS and starvation or I'll earn myself no end of grief!"

I totally disagree with you re your first comment, but musical taste is subjective so fair enough. But really? Stack up well- really really?

I totally disagree with you re the 90's - AB is a universally acclaimed classic album and rightfully so. Followed by the ground breaking Zoo TV tour and followed by Zooropa which was  equally successful and equally amazing. Zooropa album has some major U2 highlights- the title track, Stay ( surely one of the best ever U2 songs of all time),  Lemon. It's pretty sonically  experimental ( as were the visuals) and yeah, the latter half isn't anywhere near as good as AB but pees all over anything they have done in the last decade. Pop has some great songs on it and amazing guitar sounds, but didn't translate particularly well to the live arena. The UK end of the tour suffered badly by coinciding with Princess Diana's death which put a bit of a subdued feel to it all. But has some great songs on it nonetheless-- Mofo, Gone, Last Night on Earth, Miami but definitely not a classic U2 album. And Adam was busy putting the rock-n-roll into U2 then too--supermodels, missed gigs etc :-) I can tell you stacks of non-U2 fans gave them plenty of deference in the whole AB/ Zooropa early 90's era.

I totally disagree with you re the tax avoidance. It is not absurd at all. The U2 tax loophole can be explained as follows:
Rock bands such as U2 and the Rolling Stones take advantage of this loophole to manage royalty payments from their records and performances.
The bands license their copyright to companies that they set up in the Netherlands, which in turn license it to companies in other countries.
While the Netherlands companies receive the bands’ global royalties, they only pay tax on what is earned in the Netherlands itself, allowing the groups to cut their tax bills.
To give an example of this, pre-this, U2 Ltd paid tax of $46500 in Ireland. The next year, they paid $1.1m after the Irish govt. capped the tax relief on royalty income. 3 months later, U2 moved their tax affairs to The Netherlands

Frankly, they should be paying the  appropriate rate of corporation tax on the profits generated by the revenues in any particular country in which they 'trade' or generate income. And yes, it's not the 'rules' , but they would be setting a great example ( a Christian example, even lol)

Fair? Or sensible taxation? The rules are set by the mega-rich to benefit the mega-rich. Except Bono continually pontificates about debt relief and third world aid whilst continuing to do anything to minimise his own tax liabilities. Shopping centres in Lithuania--really? What about championing ethical investing? Adam Clayton is so rich he didn't even notice his maid stealing £400K from him until it was too late. The Edge embarks on a mission to build property on a protected beach front-- for what? To sell real estate? Larry Mullen sues his accountant because his investments lost 11m Euros. Bono has consistently called on the Irish government to do more to help developing nations. That he is doing so while at the same time doing anything he can to remove cash from the Irish tax coffers is what annoys people - in Ireland especially. There was an interview on Irish TV where Bono talked about how people need to get over any “warm, fuzzy feeling” they might have about the band. They’re a business, he insisted. It is interesting that he spoke on behalf of Ireland in their bid to get a seat on the UN Security Council . Ireland only contributes 0.4% of GDP to foreign aid, well below the target of 0.7% ( which hardly anyone does, but the UK does). Norway- one of Ireland's competitors for the seat-- contributes 1.05%. Perhaps U2 should make up the Irish shortfall--that would give them real kudos.

And forgive my cynicism, but how many people have U2 personally saved from dying of AIDs or starvation? Really? (again)

Re the tax thing...

Does that mean every band that has ever existed should get the same criticism?
Literally every band in the 70s and 80s were tax exiles.

As I said previously, three of them live here. The three of them pay taxes as residents of the country. I can understand people's noses been put out of joint over the hypocrisy but, as I asked before of someone, if your business stood to pay less tax elsewhere, would you take up that opportunity?

After all, everyone else is at it...

Re the taxes....should this have its own thread???   Assuming we’re good...

The whole problem with tax avoidance outrage is that it assumes that tax policy is wholly based on some kind of moral/social basis in the first place, which is not really true even in theory.  It is a big part of it in theory, I’ll grant you that.  But there are other objectives as well such as monetary policy and economic development incentives.  In actual practice, tax policy rarely ends in any kind of result that is “fair” to anyone in terms of redistribution of wealth. Its just not possible to hit such a moving and subjective target.  Tax policy is written in a way that creates both intentional and unintentional loopholes in the effort to reach certain policy objectives.  There is no tax policy that defines what is moral or ethical.  Consequently, is not unethical for any business to take fair and legal advantage to minimize its tax burden.

What if any celebrity minimized his/her tax burden so that he or she could give 100% of that to the less fortunate instead of the 30% the government was going to redistribute?  What if Paul McGuiness wanted to minimize his taxes so he could buy his tenth villa even though Edge thought the government was going to do a great job helping the poor and wanted to give the  government even more of his money.  Why not just minimize the tax legally (as most good tax policy contemplates that people will, and has thus been reflected in the rate) and let each person do what they are compelled to do with their money?  Generosity and tax avoidance are in no way conjoined.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Offline Luzita

  • Headache in a Suitcase
  • *
  • Posts: 315
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #34 on: July 06, 2018, 10:15:33 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login

Re the taxes....should this have its own thread???   Assuming we’re good...

The whole problem with tax avoidance outrage is that it assumes that tax policy is wholly based on some kind of moral/social basis in the first place, which is not really true even in theory.  It is a big part of it in theory, I’ll grant you that.  But there are other objectives as well such as monetary policy and economic development incentives.  In actual practice, tax policy rarely ends in any kind of result that is “fair” to anyone in terms of redistribution of wealth. Its just not possible to hit such a moving and subjective target.  Tax policy is written in a way that creates both intentional and unintentional loopholes in the effort to reach certain policy objectives.  There is no tax policy that defines what is moral or ethical.  Consequently, is not unethical for any business to take fair and legal advantage to minimize its tax burden.

What if any celebrity minimized his/her tax burden so that he or she could give 100% of that to the less fortunate instead of the 30% the government was going to redistribute?  What if Paul McGuiness wanted to minimize his taxes so he could buy his tenth villa even though Edge thought the government was going to do a great job helping the poor and wanted to give the  government even more of his money.  Why not just minimize the tax legally (as most good tax policy contemplates that people will, and has thus been reflected in the rate) and let each person do what they are compelled to do with their money?  Generosity and tax avoidance are in no way conjoined.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

This is an excellent discussion of the issue. I agree that it makes little sense to criticize anyone for their tax arrangements unless they actually do something illegal. The only thing U2 have been involved with that may not have been entirely kosher is the Lithuanian mall deal, and even that occupies a gray area and is several steps removed from Bono's passive investment.

But in addition, those who criticize U2 for their "tax avoidance" aren't making sense even in their own terms. If tax avoidance is truly their concern, then they should go after all tax avoiders, or at least the worst ones, instead of going after U2 for their "hypocrisy" (i.e., their good deeds).

Offline U2FlyXC

  • Stranger in a Strange Land
  • *
  • Posts: 8
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #35 on: July 06, 2018, 10:49:55 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login

Re the taxes....should this have its own thread???   Assuming we’re good...

The whole problem with tax avoidance outrage is that it assumes that tax policy is wholly based on some kind of moral/social basis in the first place, which is not really true even in theory.  It is a big part of it in theory, I’ll grant you that.  But there are other objectives as well such as monetary policy and economic development incentives.  In actual practice, tax policy rarely ends in any kind of result that is “fair” to anyone in terms of redistribution of wealth. Its just not possible to hit such a moving and subjective target.  Tax policy is written in a way that creates both intentional and unintentional loopholes in the effort to reach certain policy objectives.  There is no tax policy that defines what is moral or ethical.  Consequently, is not unethical for any business to take fair and legal advantage to minimize its tax burden.

What if any celebrity minimized his/her tax burden so that he or she could give 100% of that to the less fortunate instead of the 30% the government was going to redistribute?  What if Paul McGuiness wanted to minimize his taxes so he could buy his tenth villa even though Edge thought the government was going to do a great job helping the poor and wanted to give the  government even more of his money.  Why not just minimize the tax legally (as most good tax policy contemplates that people will, and has thus been reflected in the rate) and let each person do what they are compelled to do with their money?  Generosity and tax avoidance are in no way conjoined.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

This is an excellent discussion of the issue. I agree that it makes little sense to criticize anyone for their tax arrangements unless they actually do something illegal. The only thing U2 have been involved with that may not have been entirely kosher is the Lithuanian mall deal, and even that occupies a gray area and is several steps removed from Bono's passive investment.

But in addition, those who criticize U2 for their "tax avoidance" aren't making sense even in their own terms. If tax avoidance is truly their concern, then they should go after all tax avoiders, or at least the worst ones, instead of going after U2 for their "hypocrisy" (i.e., their good deeds).

I agree that this is a great discussion, I also want to say that I had no idea the thread would go down this route when I made it haha

Offline Luzita

  • Headache in a Suitcase
  • *
  • Posts: 315
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #36 on: July 06, 2018, 11:52:45 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login

Re the taxes....should this have its own thread???   Assuming we’re good...

The whole problem with tax avoidance outrage is that it assumes that tax policy is wholly based on some kind of moral/social basis in the first place, which is not really true even in theory.  It is a big part of it in theory, I’ll grant you that.  But there are other objectives as well such as monetary policy and economic development incentives.  In actual practice, tax policy rarely ends in any kind of result that is “fair” to anyone in terms of redistribution of wealth. Its just not possible to hit such a moving and subjective target.  Tax policy is written in a way that creates both intentional and unintentional loopholes in the effort to reach certain policy objectives.  There is no tax policy that defines what is moral or ethical.  Consequently, is not unethical for any business to take fair and legal advantage to minimize its tax burden.

What if any celebrity minimized his/her tax burden so that he or she could give 100% of that to the less fortunate instead of the 30% the government was going to redistribute?  What if Paul McGuiness wanted to minimize his taxes so he could buy his tenth villa even though Edge thought the government was going to do a great job helping the poor and wanted to give the  government even more of his money.  Why not just minimize the tax legally (as most good tax policy contemplates that people will, and has thus been reflected in the rate) and let each person do what they are compelled to do with their money?  Generosity and tax avoidance are in no way conjoined.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

This is an excellent discussion of the issue. I agree that it makes little sense to criticize anyone for their tax arrangements unless they actually do something illegal. The only thing U2 have been involved with that may not have been entirely kosher is the Lithuanian mall deal, and even that occupies a gray area and is several steps removed from Bono's passive investment.

But in addition, those who criticize U2 for their "tax avoidance" aren't making sense even in their own terms. If tax avoidance is truly their concern, then they should go after all tax avoiders, or at least the worst ones, instead of going after U2 for their "hypocrisy" (i.e., their good deeds).

I agree that this is a great discussion, I also want to say that I had no idea the thread would go down this route when I made it haha

Conversations around here can definitely go off on tangents!

Offline Rasmus

  • Refugee
  • *
  • Posts: 241
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #37 on: July 06, 2018, 02:17:20 PM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login

Re the taxes....should this have its own thread???   Assuming we’re good...

The whole problem with tax avoidance outrage is that it assumes that tax policy is wholly based on some kind of moral/social basis in the first place, which is not really true even in theory.  It is a big part of it in theory, I’ll grant you that.  But there are other objectives as well such as monetary policy and economic development incentives.  In actual practice, tax policy rarely ends in any kind of result that is “fair” to anyone in terms of redistribution of wealth. Its just not possible to hit such a moving and subjective target.  Tax policy is written in a way that creates both intentional and unintentional loopholes in the effort to reach certain policy objectives.  There is no tax policy that defines what is moral or ethical.  Consequently, is not unethical for any business to take fair and legal advantage to minimize its tax burden.

What if any celebrity minimized his/her tax burden so that he or she could give 100% of that to the less fortunate instead of the 30% the government was going to redistribute?  What if Paul McGuiness wanted to minimize his taxes so he could buy his tenth villa even though Edge thought the government was going to do a great job helping the poor and wanted to give the  government even more of his money.  Why not just minimize the tax legally (as most good tax policy contemplates that people will, and has thus been reflected in the rate) and let each person do what they are compelled to do with their money?  Generosity and tax avoidance are in no way conjoined.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

This is an excellent discussion of the issue. I agree that it makes little sense to criticize anyone for their tax arrangements unless they actually do something illegal. The only thing U2 have been involved with that may not have been entirely kosher is the Lithuanian mall deal, and even that occupies a gray area and is several steps removed from Bono's passive investment.

But in addition, those who criticize U2 for their "tax avoidance" aren't making sense even in their own terms. If tax avoidance is truly their concern, then they should go after all tax avoiders, or at least the worst ones, instead of going after U2 for their "hypocrisy" (i.e., their good deeds).

I despise all tax avoiders especiallybillionaires. I go after U2 because I am (or at leaset was) a huge fan of them - they disappoint me more than a band I never cared about would do. Tax avoidance is a concern to me but in U2's case it is definitely also about hypocrisy. I remember all too well Bono at Slane Castle talking about how they would base their crew in Dublin, Ireland during Out of Control. That was, of course, until the incredibly beneficial tax laws was changed (laws i knew nothing about at the time of that show). It has taken away from Bono's credibility to a level where I no longer takes his crusades seriously - it's all just part of the business isn't it? I once thought U2 were better than that - shame on me I suppose.

Offline Luzita

  • Headache in a Suitcase
  • *
  • Posts: 315
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #38 on: July 06, 2018, 04:47:18 PM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login

Re the taxes....should this have its own thread???   Assuming we’re good...

The whole problem with tax avoidance outrage is that it assumes that tax policy is wholly based on some kind of moral/social basis in the first place, which is not really true even in theory.  It is a big part of it in theory, I’ll grant you that.  But there are other objectives as well such as monetary policy and economic development incentives.  In actual practice, tax policy rarely ends in any kind of result that is “fair” to anyone in terms of redistribution of wealth. Its just not possible to hit such a moving and subjective target.  Tax policy is written in a way that creates both intentional and unintentional loopholes in the effort to reach certain policy objectives.  There is no tax policy that defines what is moral or ethical.  Consequently, is not unethical for any business to take fair and legal advantage to minimize its tax burden.

What if any celebrity minimized his/her tax burden so that he or she could give 100% of that to the less fortunate instead of the 30% the government was going to redistribute?  What if Paul McGuiness wanted to minimize his taxes so he could buy his tenth villa even though Edge thought the government was going to do a great job helping the poor and wanted to give the  government even more of his money.  Why not just minimize the tax legally (as most good tax policy contemplates that people will, and has thus been reflected in the rate) and let each person do what they are compelled to do with their money?  Generosity and tax avoidance are in no way conjoined.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

This is an excellent discussion of the issue. I agree that it makes little sense to criticize anyone for their tax arrangements unless they actually do something illegal. The only thing U2 have been involved with that may not have been entirely kosher is the Lithuanian mall deal, and even that occupies a gray area and is several steps removed from Bono's passive investment.

But in addition, those who criticize U2 for their "tax avoidance" aren't making sense even in their own terms. If tax avoidance is truly their concern, then they should go after all tax avoiders, or at least the worst ones, instead of going after U2 for their "hypocrisy" (i.e., their good deeds).

I despise all tax avoiders especiallybillionaires. I go after U2 because I am (or at leaset was) a huge fan of them - they disappoint me more than a band I never cared about would do. Tax avoidance is a concern to me but in U2's case it is definitely also about hypocrisy. I remember all too well Bono at Slane Castle talking about how they would base their crew in Dublin, Ireland during Out of Control. That was, of course, until the incredibly beneficial tax laws was changed (laws i knew nothing about at the time of that show). It has taken away from Bono's credibility to a level where I no longer takes his crusades seriously - it's all just part of the business isn't it? I once thought U2 were better than that - shame on me I suppose.
You’re entitled to your feelings of course.

I think you may be getting your dates mixed up however. Wasn’t Slane Castle in 2001? They didn’t move their publishing company to the Netherlands till 2006.

Also they didn’t move all their companies. If “crew” means road crew that may still be based in Dublin. I don’t know for sure though.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Online Tortuga

  • Wanderer
  • *
  • Posts: 99
Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #39 on: July 06, 2018, 05:31:45 PM »


Just realized what I posted might be off-limits politics and can’t find a way to delete it so my apologies.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
« Last Edit: July 06, 2018, 07:35:54 PM by Tortuga »

Offline SwimmingSorrows

  • Headache in a Suitcase
  • *
  • Posts: 379
  • Some folks are bound for glory, I was Born to Hang
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #40 on: July 06, 2018, 07:40:00 PM »
Numb and Lemon are massively overrated.

Offline shineinthesummernight

  • Child of Grace
  • **
  • Posts: 1,573
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #41 on: July 06, 2018, 07:46:39 PM »
And they should pay as much to Ireland as possible because....???   The Irish government helps so many people with their tax dollars?  I guess you could make the case that the military is small so most of the taxes would go to pensions or infrastructure.  Is that your point?

Offline hotty375

  • Babyface
  • *
  • Posts: 24
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #42 on: July 07, 2018, 05:59:52 AM »
I wasn't sure which response to reply to ( I could have replied to all of them re the tax thing) , but as I am semi-responsible for starting the 'tax' thread by my way of my reply to Luzita, and mindful of not straying too far into 'politics' territory, I've tried to return to the OP's original intention- Unpopular Opinions- but keeping with the theme.

1) Bono is NOT a philanthropist in the true sense of the word.
2) Bono's evangelizing and preaching is now overshadowing their musical output, and markedly detracts from the live U2 experience ( and probably knocks 2 songs off the setlist)
3) U2 are very selective in the 'social causes' they champion for fear of upsetting rich and powerful friends, alienating a sizeable portion of their US audience, and to suit their own agenda.
4) The last 2 albums are their worst
5) the 1st leg of the SoE tour was the least exciting, least joyful, least inspiring tour leg they have ever played.

Ok, just so it's not a negative, overly-critical post-- I have no doubt that the One.org and RED do, have done, and will continue to do incredibly beneficial things, and that has been made possible by Bono's ACTIVISM ,not his PHILANTHROPY.

The SoI album may not have been U2's best, but the tour IMO was their best arena tour since ZOO TV.

Bono is arguably one of rock's greatest ever frontmen, a great songwriter and vocalist, and an underrated lyricist.

The tax thing would make a great new thread but I fear it would stray into 'politics' territory

Love & Peace ( or else)  ;)

Online Tortuga

  • Wanderer
  • *
  • Posts: 99
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #43 on: July 07, 2018, 07:37:23 AM »
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
I wasn't sure which response to reply to ( I could have replied to all of them re the tax thing) , but as I am semi-responsible for starting the 'tax' thread by my way of my reply to Luzita, and mindful of not straying too far into 'politics' territory, I've tried to return to the OP's original intention- Unpopular Opinions- but keeping with the theme.

1) Bono is NOT a philanthropist in the true sense of the word.
2) Bono's evangelizing and preaching is now overshadowing their musical output, and markedly detracts from the live U2 experience ( and probably knocks 2 songs off the setlist)
3) U2 are very selective in the 'social causes' they champion for fear of upsetting rich and powerful friends, alienating a sizeable portion of their US audience, and to suit their own agenda.
4) The last 2 albums are their worst
5) the 1st leg of the SoE tour was the least exciting, least joyful, least inspiring tour leg they have ever played.

Ok, just so it's not a negative, overly-critical post-- I have no doubt that the One.org and RED do, have done, and will continue to do incredibly beneficial things, and that has been made possible by Bono's ACTIVISM ,not his PHILANTHROPY.

The SoI album may not have been U2's best, but the tour IMO was their best arena tour since ZOO TV.

Bono is arguably one of rock's greatest ever frontmen, a great songwriter and vocalist, and an underrated lyricist.

The tax thing would make a great new thread but I fear it would stray into 'politics' territory

Love & Peace ( or else)  ;)

None of us have any way of knowing the degree to which Bono is a philanthropist.  By philanthropist do you mean somebody who gives so much its impossible to keep it secret and so they make their giving a public platform (like Gates and Buffet)?  At a net worth of $600 million, Bono is just not at that level.  He could easily give 20% or more of his income and remain anonymous.  It is not considered good character to brag on your own generosity.  How much does he need to give to be judged worthy of his activism?  As for the selectivism, that is clearly intentional and strategic to maximize his effectiveness.  Bono has always been straight up that he is a capitalist and pragmatic... that he’s no hippie with flowers in his hair.  He’s focused on the end, not the means.

All the rest of your comments on the band’s creative output I agree with and its irrelevant to me how big an angel Bono is.  He’s a bigger one than me.  I can’t demand more than that of my rock stars.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Offline Dali

  • Child of Grace
  • **
  • Posts: 1,706
Re: Unpopular Opinion: U2 Edition
« Reply #44 on: July 07, 2018, 07:40:49 AM »
I agree with the original poster that "Songs Of Innocence" has got mostly very well written songs on it and is a comeback of sorts.

I just hope they don't work with Jacknife Lee ever again because his production choices are boring.

"Wild Irish Rose" is an awesome song and way too overlooked. It will be a standout on their rarities box set once they release one.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2018, 07:47:54 AM by Dali »