Two headlines in today’s Seattle Times tell an important story about Boeing:

Boeing will refurbish flight-test 747-8s in Texas

Boeing: S.C. work won’t stop despite NLRB complaint

Yet in the 2008 biennium alone, tax breaks for Boeing cost the state $195 million (reference) in return for taxbreaks meant to keep jobs in Washington State.

According to The Solution: Close Tax Loopholes

So we now have a loophole for software manufacturers like Microsoft that will cost the state $143 million this year, another loophole for airplane manufacturers like Boeing that will cost the state $104 million, and a loophole (or “special tax break,” see how that works?) for struggling newspaper publishers that will cost the state $18 million.

Taxbreaks for rich corporations are, of course, a national problem.

Boeing … actually received a tax rebate totaling $75 million over the years 2008-2010 (on profits of $9.7 billion), or General Electric, which, according to Robert McIntyre — director of the nonprofit group Citizens for Tax Justice — had an effective tax rate of negative 15.8 percent from 2006 through 2010. (Forbes has noted that GE has “displayed an uncanny ability to lose lots of money in the U.S. and make lots of money overseas, where tax rates are lower.”)
— from Support for corporate tax reform on the rise

What’s ironic, and sad, is that Boeing gets much of its business from government contracts: it’s a major defense contractor.

Republicans like national defense, but they don’t like paying for it with taxes.

Yet even many Democrats (in name only) show sympathy for taxbreaks for rich corporations. Using a Republican talking point, they say: raising taxes will be a jobs killer.

On that theory, we might as well push for a permanent extension of the Bush tax cuts.

Banana republic here we come.