Category Archives: Business

Sheesh, Capitalists!

“Here’s What Stocks You Want to Own in the Event of a War With North Korea”

https://www.thestreet.com/story/14316270/1/north-korea.html

What a load of bullshit! Cramer’s TheStreet is trying to tell you “Hey, here’s how to make money on the up coming end-of-the-world — get in now while you still have air to breathe!”

  • Do these people even realize how like human scum they are?
  • Is there a more despicable slice of humanity than capitalists?
  • Do capitalists even have souls?
  • What do you call 1,000,000 capitalists at the bottom of the sea?
    A good start. (an oldie but tasteless joke).
  • Are there conscientiousness capitalists? I guess… I’ve never met any. They “say” they are but most likely would read an article like that and, if it made sense, take financial advantage of the information.
  • Do I despise capitalists? No. Only those who own capital.

 

Advertisements

Apocalypse for charity

What if you could prepare for the Apocalypse while donating to charity at the same time?

Imagine this:

For $100 a year Calamity-Charity delivers to your door a five-gallon (or more) bucket of various survival goods. Inside you’ll find 20-30 kilos of rice, beans, oats, wheat, and assorted flavorings and dried vegetables and proteins.

Now, in all likelihood, you probably won’t be using any of the contents in this bucket. And in fact, it behooves you to NOT use it. Because after six months, Calamity-Charity will delivery to you a NEW bucket, and take the old sealed bucket away. If you renew your yearly subscription, every six months you’ll get a brand new bucket of survival food.

But not only that… Because you DONATED your first sealed bucket you get to write off its cost of $50.00. If you renew your subscription you get to write off ALL $100 as a charitable donation. AND STILL get to keep your third survival bucket (which gets replaced on your anniversary and then again… and so on and so forth.)

And here’s the bonus part: that food that Calamity-Charity carted away after six months? Yeah, it went to FEED THE POOR! It went to homeless shelters, emergency food supplies for natural disaster victims — it didn’t get thrown out — it got used by those in need.

And if, by the extremely unlikely scenario you need to use the food? Well, you’ll have guaranteed fresh grains ready and waiting for your use.

Sounds like a pretty good business model no? Get in on the Apoca-porn industry, provide a potentially life saving service, and create a charity system all in one!

 

 

 


Forced to lie

I went looking for a job.

I found this one, it looked like a fit for my skills — on the surface — not enough information was available though. So I applied on Dice.com.

The recruiter called me. “Here’s the job specs, go have a look-see.”

A few of the “Requirements” stuck out at me:

  • Excellent attention to detail
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Excellent time management skills
  • Excellent problem-solving and analytical skills

I thought to myself, “I might be excellent in one or two of those, and probably above average in others (and maybe just average in time management…), but I sure as hell am not EXCELLENT in all of those!”

In fact, I’m not sure who is. I’ve never met someone like that. By stating that these are requirements, anyone stepping up with interest would effectively be lying:

“Yes, I’m excellent in all of those things.”

“No you’re not, nobody is. Therefore you’re already lying to us.”

“Well, you got me there. But if everyone who approaches you has to lie about possessing Excellent Everything skills, why make such stipulations? Do you WANT to force every one of your candidates into a LIE — right from the get-go?”

Apparently this is common practice. Job requirements call out completely unrealistic levels and numbers of skills and expect you to lie about them.

Needless to say I brought up this discrepancy and the blatant need to lie to get a job interview. The recruiter didn’t care. “Everyone does it,” he said.

Nice – an entire industry predicated on lies.


Sleazy Tactics Carfax!

The US Auto background checking site Carfax, has a sleazy tactic. They auto select the most expensive option – and DO NOT prompt to confirm the sale.

LAME-O Carfax!

SleazyCarfax

 

IT GETS WORSE!!!

CarFax then plays a game with their Lookup by License or VIN#

Try to enter a license plate number… AND then you’re forced to use the VIN#

SleazyCarfax2So you can’t actually run by License Plate Number!!!!!!

SLEAZOID CARFAX!

SleazyCarfax3


New FED Mandate – Equality

The Federal Reserve is “governed” by a Congressional mandate:

  • Maximize employment.
  • Keep prices stable.
  • Retain moderate long-term interest rates.

I propose another:

  • Minimize income inequality.

Now, there’s a problem with all of these mandates. The FED has but three primitive tools with which to accomplish their goals.

  • The Discount Rate, that is, the oft stated “interest rate”.
  • Banking reserve requirements, what percentage of deposits banks are required to retain to substantiate their loans.
  • Open market activity, buying and selling of treasuries like the Quantitative Easing they did during the 2008 Financial Crisis.

So, what new (or existing) tool can Congress give the FED to help it with this new “Min- Inequality” mandate? How can the FED do its work with only a throttle/brake (interest rate), a bottle of NOX (QE),  and seat belts (banking reserve)?

If we postulate that the three main drivers of income inequality are corporations that:

  • Pay their executives and officers far more than they are worth, and pay their employees far less than they are worth.
  • That they distribute the income of the company’s business to shareholders rather than a larger portion going to employees (as wage, salary or shares).
  • And that they use net income to buy-back shares of the company from the stock market (which boosts stock prices).

Then those are the behaviors we want to change.

These are therefore the leverage points we can use:
1) Corporations borrow money from banks to fund growth.
2) They borrow money from investors as bonds to fund growth.
3) And corporations issue additional common or preferred stock to fund growth.

We would need to give the FED the power to throttle each of these corporate growth behaviors. With me so far? For each of these corporate expansion tactics we’ll add an inequality tax. This tax will be a calculation of the highest paid employee divided by the lowest paid employee — and that then divided by 100.

   CEO    ÷ low wage ÷ (adj)
5,000,000 ÷  50,000  ÷  100  = 1.00

The FED will now be given additional power, a number the “Inequality Quotient” IEQQ, by which they can lower the inequality penalty or raise it.

With the FED IEQQ number set to 1.00, a corporation with the above inequality metric would have to pay 1% higher interest rate to borrow money from any bank. Would have to pay 1% more in bond interest for any bonds they issue. And they would have to pay 1% gratuity tax on any new shares they offered.

   CEO    ÷ low wage ÷ (adj)
5,000,000 ÷ 50,000   ÷ 100 * (1.00 FED IEQQ) = 1.00%

All funds collected would go into — Social Security!

Simple right? Now, how do we convince Congress that this is important and that this (or a version of it) will work?


Aristocracy stymied corptocracy

European countries do not kowtow to corporations the way the United States does. In the US, the corporations own the politicians and they do the bidding of the plutocrats and the oligarchs — you know, the share holders and board members.

But European countries don’t let corporations run the show. And I wondered why this is.

Could it be that because Europe has had the bad taste in its collective mouth regarding kings and queens through the ages, that when it came time to form democratic governments they KNEW how to construct rules of government that limited the power of the powerful?

In the US, the new aristocracy are the corporate plutocrats that run and pay for government. The Koch asshats, and their ilk. When the corporations were just beginning to become “a thing” in the US, the likes of the robber barons, the train tycoons, the oil and steel magnates (Rockefeller and Morgan) we tried to handle them and the monopolies they formed (as all true capitalistic enterprises will eventually try to do). But when dozens, then hundreds and then tens of thousands of corporations and the power they wielded rose and demanded control of the country, its resources and its wealth — US Citizens had NO IDEA what to do? Why? Because we’d never had tyrants trying to run our lives for century after century.

So, is the United States just an aristocratic victim in the making because there’s no way that the plutocrats in power are going to relinquish that power? Or, like Europeans, can we learn to control the corptocracy?


Why Owners and Workers?

Owner : worker

How long has it been this way? Always?

Why is our relationship to each other in regards to producing goods and services organized this way?

Is this hierarchy the root cause of inequality?

When did I become subservient to you? When did your needs become more important than mine? When did my children, my home, my well-being assume to be lesser-than than yours? Is this some extended form of patriarchy; the father in charge, and the sons (and daughters) accepting less or portions of the harvest, the land, the wealth?

When the first merchant-like person requested help from their neighbor, to make pots or plant grain or chop firewood, did that person not consider that both he and they were equals? Or did that person, upon that singular act: “Do this for me and I will reward you,” create the first class system?

And have we lived this way ever since?

Capitalism, the outgrowth from such a domination hierarchy, and its founder, Adam Smith, seem conflicted:

“Labour was the first price, the original purchase – money that was paid for all things. It was not by gold or by silver, but by labour, that all wealth of the world was originally purchased.”

“It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.”

Above, from those two quotes, Adam Smith both acknowledges that labor is wealth and, from my mind, should be treated equally as wealth. But then assumes that the merchants, who must hire the laborers, do so not in recognition that labor is wealth, but in order to leverage that labor to their own interests.

The fallout from this relationship, today’s corporatism, has turned the worker in to a puny commodity, one which is denigrated and slighted, so much so that they lose all power in society. Only the owners, the capitalists shall be granted voice and power in this wealth based society.

From this we get the incomprehensible inequality we have today. The capitalists own thousands if not millions more wealth than the workers on whom they have depended, in a word, exploited.

Could we have built any other type of system — from the start? Could that first merchant-like person have not said: “Do this and I will reward you” but “We’ll do this together and the both of us shall be rewarded.”?

Could Adam Smith not have reinterpreted his beliefs such that:

“The price of labour shall be the price of ownership where all who struggle and persevere shall benefit from their toil.”

Or, “It is from the understanding that all who endeavor at a goal be it animal husbandry, brewing, or baking shall be rewarded with not only the fruits of their labour but ownership in that which their labour supports.”

Could these not have been the way we moved forward as an economically driven species?

Could we ever redirect our trajectory toward such an equality oriented system?