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BeckyDem

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Home country: USA
Member since: Thu Feb 9, 2017, 01:31 PM
Number of posts: 4,809

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Apple Plans to Buy $75 Billion More of Its Own Stock

(Expect to hear candidates like Warren talk to the public about this insanity.)

By Jack Nicas

April 30, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO — Shortly after Apple used a new tax law last year to bring back most of the $252 billion it had held abroad, the company said it would buy back $100 billion of its stock.

On Tuesday, Apple announced its plans for another major chunk of the money: It will buy back a further $75 billion in stock.

“Our first priority is always looking after the business and making sure we continue to grow and invest,” Luca Maestri, Apple’s finance chief, said in an interview. “If there is excess cash, then obviously we want to return it to investors.”

Apple’s record buybacks should be welcome news to shareholders, as the stock price is likely to climb. But the buybacks could also expose the company to more criticism that the tax cuts it received have mostly benefited investors and executives.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/30/technology/apple-stock-buyback-quarterly-results.html

The economy isn't getting better for most Americans. But there is a fix



Heather Boushey


US economic data leaves us in the dark. If we don’t change the way we measure such progress, we’re unlikely to have much of it
Read our entire Broken capitalism series


The economy is getting bigger, but not better. Not for most Americans, anyway. In the United States, additional income from productivity and growth has been going mostly to those at the top of the income and wealth ladder. Between 1979 and 2016, the US national income grew by nearly 60%, but after accounting for taxes and transfers, the bottom half of the income distribution experienced incomes rising by 22%, while those in the top 10% had income gains that were almost five times as much – 100%.

As income inequality widens, it’s calcified into some at the top accumulating larger and larger stocks of assets – money, but also property, stocks, bonds and other kinds of capital. In the United States, the distribution of wealth is even more severely unequal than income. Since 1979, wealth gains at the top have grown even faster than income; those in the top 1% now control about 40% of all wealth in the US economy, and the top 0.1% control more than 20% – three times as much as the late 1970s.

To put this into raw numbers, there are 160,000 families in the United States who hold more than $20m in 2012, the most recent year for which data is available, and their average wealth was $72m. This group’s share of wealth was almost equal to that of the bottom 90% of Americans.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/may/01/broken-capitalism-economy-americans-fix?CMP=share_btn_tw

Warren attacks JPMorgan Chase for financial advice tweet to customers

Warren kicks the sociopath, Jamie Dimon, better than anyone else. You go, Warren!!!!!!!!

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass) led criticism of JPMorgan Chase, the country’s largest bank, after it attempted to offer financial advice to struggling customers Monday.

Details: The bank was roundly criticized on Twitter for its attempt at being relatable on social media. In a series of Twitter posts, Rep. Katie Porter ‏D-calif, called for JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon to apologize for the tweet. "And if this tweet does reflect Mr.Dimon’s views, an apology won’t cut it. Might be a #TimetoRetireThursday," she added.

Why it matters: America's big banks are facing heightened scrutiny in Congress. At a House Financial Services Committee hearing this month, Porter challenged Dimon, asking the billionaire how a single mother working as a Chase bank teller should budget her salary, after taking into account the cost of child care and other expenses.

What they're saying: JPMorgan Chase later deleted the tweet and addressed the controversy in a follow-up Twitter post.

https://www.axios.com/jpmorgan-chase-tweet-warren-gives-bank-advice-53e3be45-1b9c-49d1-bad0-317cc8e076b4.html

Environment & Health: Noam Chomsky Says the Green New Deal Is Exactly the Right Idea

By Amy Goodman, Democracy Now!

Published April 18, 2019

Supporters of the Green New Deal are launching a nationwide tour Thursday to build support for the congressional resolution to transform the U.S. economy through funding renewable energy while ending U.S. carbon dioxide emissions by 2030. Democracy Now! spoke with Noam Chomsky about the Green New Deal and the lessons of the old New Deal in Boston last week.

TRANSCRIPT:

*Noam Chomsky: First of all, I think the Green New Deal is exactly the right idea. You can raise questions about the specific form in which Ocasio-Cortez and Markey introduced it: Maybe it shouldn’t be exactly this way; it should be a little bit differently. But the general idea is quite right. And there’s very solid work explaining, developing in detail, exactly how it could work. So, a very fine economist at UMass Amherst, Robert Pollin, has written extensively on, in extensive detail, with close analysis of how you could implement policies of this kind in a very effective way, which would actually make a better society. It wouldn’t be that you’d lose from it; you’d gain from it. The costs of renewable energy are declining very sharply. If you eliminate the massive subsidies that are given to fossil fuels, they probably already surpass them. There are many means that can be implemented and carried out to overcome, certainly to mitigate, maybe to overcome, this serious crisis. So the basic idea is, I think, completely defensible—in fact, essential. A lot of the media commentary ridiculing this and that aspect of it are essentially beside the point. You can change the dates from 2030 to 2040, you can do a couple of other manipulations, but the basic idea is correct.

Well, what’s the difference from the 1930s? Several things. One thing that’s different is large-scale labor action. The 1930s were the period of the organization of the CIO. In the 1920s, the U.S. labor movement had been virtually destroyed. Remember, this is very much a business-run society. American labor history is very violent, quite unlike comparable countries. And by the 1920s, the quite effective, militant labor movement had been pretty much crushed. One of the great works of labor history, by David Montgomery, one of the great labor historians, is called The Rise and Fall of the American Labor Movement [The Fall of the House of Labor: The Workplace, the State, and American Labor Activism, 1865-1925]. He was talking about the 1920s, when it had essentially been destroyed. The 1930s, it revived. It revived with large-scale organizing activities. The CIO organizing began. The strike actions were quite militant. They led to sitdown strikes. A sitdown strike is a real sign of warning to the business classes, because there’s a step beyond a sitdown strike. The next step beyond a sitdown strike is: “Let’s start the factory by running it by ourselves. We don’t need the bosses. We can run it ourselves. So, get rid of them.” OK? That’s a real revolution, the kind that should take place. The participants in an enterprise would own and run it by themselves, instead of being the slaves of the private owners who control their lives. And a sitdown strike is a bare step away from that. That aroused real fear among the ownership classes.

Second element was there was a sympathetic administration, which is very critical. You look at the history of labor actions over the centuries—there’s a very good book on this, incidentally, by Erik Loomis, who studies—has a book called American History in Ten Strikes, or some similar name [A History of America in Ten Strikes], where he runs through the militant labor actions ever since the early 19th century. And he makes an interesting point. He says every successful labor action has had at least tacit support of the government. If the government and the ownership classes are unified in crushing labor action, they’ve always succeeded. OK? Very significant observation. And in the 1930s, there was a sympathetic administration, for many reasons. But that combination of militant labor action—it was a very lively political period in many ways—and a sympathetic administration did lead to the New Deal, which greatly changed people’s lives.

https://truthout.org/video/noam-chomsky-the-green-new-deal-is-exactly-the-right-idea/
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