Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
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23-07-2012, 08:12 AM
Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
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Recently, it was revealed that the vast majority of Mitt Romney's charitable donations have gone to the LDS Church. According to Business Insider, in 2010, Romney took $3 million in charitable deductions on his tax return, 95% of which went to the LDS Church in one form or another.

According to Businessweek, Romney and others at Bain Capital gave the Mormon Church millions in stock holdings obtained through Bain deals. Between 1997 and 2009, these included $2 million in Burger King and $1 million in Domino’s Pizza . Under U.S. law, churches can legally turn around and sell donated stock without paying capital-gains taxes, a clear advantage for both donor and receiver.

Romney and his religion seem well-suited. In a June 2011 cover story, Newsweek magazinestated that the LDS Church "resembles a sanctified multinational corporation—the General Electric of American religion, with global ambitions and an estimated net worth of $30 billion." The PBS special 'The Mormons' estimated the LDS Church's worth at over $80 billion. Other estimates have placed it in excess of $100 Billion, as it is the wealthiest per capita religion in the world with annual, mostly tax-free revenues estimated to be $6 billion per year (per Time Magazine in 1997).

How does the LDS Church make its money?

Like most religions, the LDS Church receives donations from its members. Mormons are required to pay 10% of their income to the LDS Church in order to remain in good standing. In fact, each Mormon must account for their tithing payments in an annual "tithing settlement," and any shortfall must be paid in order to continue to receive the benefits of full fellowship (including being able to attend the weddings of their children in Mormon temples).

The Mormon church is not above fleecing its poorest members. Recently, a prominent Mormon leader, in a speech delivered worldwide to the church membership titled "Tithing--a Commandment Even for the Destitute," stated:
Quote:One of the first things a bishop must do to help the needy is ask them to pay their tithing. Like the widow, if a destitute family is faced with the decision of paying their tithing or eating, they should pay their tithing.

The Mormon church also makes a great deal of money on for-profit enterprises originally funded by tithing donations. As noted by Businessweek, first among its for-profit enterprises is Deseret Management Corporation (DMC), which reaps estimated annual revenues of $1.2 billion from six subsidiaries. Those subsidiaries run a newspaper, 11 radio stations, a TV station, a publishing and distribution company, a digital media company, a hospitality business, and an insurance business with assets worth $3.3 billion. DMC has been 2,000 and 3,000 employees.

What does the LDS Church do with its money?

I previously discussed in "What would Jesus do with $5 billion" the construction by the LDS Church of a shopping mall and residential complex in Salt Lake City. For a while, this was one of the largest construction projects in America.

In addition to its mall-building ambitions, the LDS Church owns some 928,000 acres in North America, is the largest ranch land owner in Wyoming, is the 2nd largest land owner in Nebraska, has the largest cattle ranch in 48 states (adjacent to Disneyworld in Florida), and is the largest foreign landowner in the UK.

The LDS Church's holdings also include:
  • AgReserves Inc. - the largest producer of nuts in America. Outside the U.S., AgReserves operates in Britain, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Argentina, and Brazil. Its Australian property, valued at $61 million in 1997, has estimated annual sales of $276 million, according to Dun & Bradstreet.
  • Hawaii Reserves, Inc. - Miscellaneous church holdings in Hawaii (including 6,000 prime acres on the North Shore of Oahu), the Polynesian Cultural Center (the leading paid visitor attraction in Hawaii), and Brigham Young University-Hawaii. At the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC), general-admission adult tickets cost $49.95; VIP tickets cost up to $228.95. In 2010, the PCC had net assets worth $70 million and collected $23 million in ticket sales alone, as well as $36 million in tax-free donations
  • Farmland Reserve Inc. - 228,000 acres (923 km²) in Nebraska; 51,600 acres in Osage County, Oklahoma
  • Deseret Cattle and Citrus - over 312,000 acres (1,260 km²) in Florida
  • Bonneville International Corporation - the 14th largest radio chain in the U.S.
  • Deseret Morning News - a daily Utah newspaper, second-largest in the state of Utah.
  • Beneficial Financial Group - An insurance and financial services company with assets of $3.1 billion.
How much actual charity does the LDS Church provide?
As I noted in "How atheists (and everyone else) subsidize religion in the United States," the LDS Church donated a relatively insignificant $1 billion to charitable causes in the 23 year time span between 1985 and 2008, which accounts for 0.7% of the church's income. By contrast, the American Red Cross spends 92.1 percent of its revenue directly addressing the physical needs of those it intends to help; only 7.9 percent is spent on “operating expenses." I suppose the Mormon church might believe that spreading its racist, homophobic, and sexist message is a form of "charity," but I beg to differ.

In what possible world does it make sense for an organization with assets on par with a large Fortune 500 company, which gives less than 1% of its "earnings" to charity, to be given all of the tax breaks discussed in my article? It truly is unconscionable.



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23-07-2012, 08:24 AM
RE: Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
How does this compare to the RC church or the evangelicals? I am curious, not to judge degrees of "badness" but rather to get a full picture of the wealth and greed of the other major religious institutions.
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23-07-2012, 01:18 PM
RE: Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
The major majorty of my Catholic parents charity is to the Catholic church.
I would think it strange if a religious person's charity was not to their church.
That's how they roll.
I would actually think less of Romney if he was secular and gave no money to charity.
That would say more about any possible lack of character.

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28-07-2012, 08:20 PM
RE: Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
"The largest producer of nuts in America".
You can say that again. Weeping




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28-07-2012, 09:10 PM
RE: Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
(28-07-2012 08:20 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  "The largest producer of nuts in America".

Oh thank God I watched the clip to know you weren't talking about pistachios, almonds, hazelnuts, and Brazil nuts. My paleo diet would've taken a serious fucking protein and fiber hit.

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28-07-2012, 11:59 PM
RE: Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
Quote:As I noted in "How atheists (and everyone else) subsidize religion in the United States," the LDS Church donated a relatively insignificant $1 billion to charitable causes in the 23 year time span between 1985 and 2008, which accounts for 0.7% of the church's income.

WHAT!!!

Are you fucking kidding me!?

how.. why.. Ya know what, if people are fucking stupid enough to give away 10% of their income to this then they deserve to lose 10% of their income to this.

Just a note, Bill Gates has donated over $28billion to charity.

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29-07-2012, 08:39 AM
RE: Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
(28-07-2012 11:59 PM)earmuffs Wrote:  
Quote:As I noted in "How atheists (and everyone else) subsidize religion in the United States," the LDS Church donated a relatively insignificant $1 billion to charitable causes in the 23 year time span between 1985 and 2008, which accounts for 0.7% of the church's income.

WHAT!!!

Are you fucking kidding me!?

how.. why.. Ya know what, if people are fucking stupid enough to give away 10% of their income to this then they deserve to lose 10% of their income to this.

Just a note, Bill Gates has donated over $28billion to charity.

People like Bill Gates are amazing. The paltry amount that the LDS church has donated to charitable causes is unconscionable. I suppose they think that their missionaries are performing "charity" by going door-to-door.

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29-07-2012, 08:23 PM
RE: Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
(29-07-2012 08:39 AM)Theofrak Wrote:  
(28-07-2012 11:59 PM)earmuffs Wrote:  WHAT!!!

Are you fucking kidding me!?

how.. why.. Ya know what, if people are fucking stupid enough to give away 10% of their income to this then they deserve to lose 10% of their income to this.

Just a note, Bill Gates has donated over $28billion to charity.

People like Bill Gates are amazing. The paltry amount that the LDS church has donated to charitable causes is unconscionable. I suppose they think that their missionaries are performing "charity" by going door-to-door.

The difference as well is when do you ever see Mr Gates on the news, "I donated XXX amount therefore I am a good person therefore buy Microsoft"
Yet you can bet your bottom dollar you'll get a church flaunting the amount the have donated.
Maybe it's just here but the adverts seem to be either "this is what needs done" or "this is what we have done" and the later is always a church group while the first is always some neutral non-religious organization.
Maybe that's just my observations.

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17-12-2015, 02:49 PM
RE: Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
Do you think these people give 10% of their income just because they want to belong to something? Pretty disgusting that these religious leaders are fleecing people in the name of religion or God. They're just laughing all the way to the bank because these sheeple fall for it.

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17-12-2015, 06:15 PM (This post was last modified: 17-12-2015 06:22 PM by Alla.)
RE: Romney's Religion: The Mormon Corporate Empire
(28-07-2012 09:10 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(28-07-2012 08:20 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  "The largest producer of nuts in America".

Oh thank God I watched the clip to know you weren't talking about pistachios, almonds, hazelnuts, and Brazil nuts. My paleo diet would've taken a serious fucking protein and fiber hit.
Laugh out load Thumbsup

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