From groceries and streaming subscriptions to internet servers and Alexa, Amazon has change into one of the crucial highly effective financial forces on the planet. And after Jeff Bezos returned from his temporary flight to house on Tuesday in a rocket constructed by his non-public house firm, Blue Origin, he made remarks that drew consideration to the huge wealth the corporate had created for him.
“I additionally need to thank each Amazon worker and each Amazon buyer since you guys paid for all of this,” Mr. Bezos stated throughout a information convention after his spaceflight.
Mr. Bezos’ remark prompted swift important reactions, together with from a member of the Home of Representatives who serves on the tax-writing Methods and Means Committee.
“House journey isn’t a tax-free vacation for the rich,” stated Consultant Earl Blumenauer, Democrat of Oregon. “We pay taxes on aircraft tickets. Billionaires flying into house — producing no scientific worth — ought to do the identical, after which some!”
Mr. Blumenauer expressed issues concerning the environmental results of such house vacationer flights. He stated he had launched laws he referred to as the Securing Protections Towards Carbon Emissions (SPACE) Tax Act, aiming to make passengers on such flights pay a tax to offset their air pollution affect.
He wasn’t alone in connecting Mr. Bezos’ spaceflight with issues about how Amazon’s enterprise practices have affected his firm’s workers in addition to small companies.
“Whereas Jeff Bezos is everywhere in the information for paying to go to house, let’s not neglect the truth he has created right here on Earth,” Consultant Nydia Velazquez, Democrat of New York, stated on Twitter. She added the hashtag #WealthTaxNow on Tuesday morning and included a hyperlink to an article about how a lot Amazon’s workers had been paid.
Whereas these congressional Democrats provided criticism, the message from the White Home was extra welcoming.
“This can be a second of American exceptionalism,” Jen Psaki, the White Home press secretary, stated when requested concerning the flight throughout a Tuesday information convention.