Capitalism, What a Concept!

Reading a newspaper i464Capitalism, What a Concept!

If you read the story below you will discover that large corporations are receiving enormous sums of money from state and local governments. Apparently, free market neo-liberalism is good for the common folk like us but we must not speak the dire word, competition, when it comes to large corporations. After all, why should a multi-national organization with billions of dollars in resources do the hard thing like compete in a free market when they can milk state and local governments?

So, it is neo-liberalism for us and corporate welfare for them. Can you say, “Hypocrisy?”

What does neo-liberalism for us mean? It means depressed wages, direct competition with workers in undeveloped nations, continued decline in what we can expect in terms of education and any other government benefit, and that we will be forced into ever more dire circumstances of economic insecurity.

What does neo-liberalism mean for multi-national corporations? In terms of the company itself, nothing. They don’t do neo-liberalism. They do it to others. In terms of the environment of the company, it means they pay less in wages, less in taxes and can exert ever increasing control over their workers while maintaining a loyal and servile class of would-be courtiers who bow and scrape before them while uttering the sacred phrase, “Job Creators.”

Yes, job creators. You can ship American jobs overseas by the millions, play havoc with the American dream of owning a home, almost destroy the world’s economic system and you win the title of “job creator.”

We live in a strange country where people can believe in this kind of nonsense.

James Pilant

The shocking numbers behind corporate welfare | Al Jazeera America

State and local governments have awarded at least $110 billion in taxpayer subsidies to business, with 3 of every 4 dollars going to fewer than 1,000 big corporations, the most thorough analysis to date of corporate welfare revealed today.

Boeing ranks first, with 137 subsidies totaling $13.2 billion, followed by Alcoa at $5.6 billion, Intel at $3.9 billion, General Motors at $3.5 billion and Ford Motor at $2.5 billion, the new report by the nonprofit research organization Good Jobs First shows.

Dow Chemical had the most subsidies, 410 totaling $1.4 billion, followed by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire-Hathaway holding company, with 310 valued at $1.1 billion.

The figures were compiled from disclosures made by state and local government agencies that subsidize companies in all sorts of ways, including cash giveaways, building and land transfers, tax abatements and steep discounts on electric and water bills.

via The shocking numbers behind corporate welfare | Al Jazeera America.

From around the web.

From the web site,

So…when the corporations, and their toadies in Congress, are spewing forth the lie that corporations pay too much in taxes, inhibiting job growth, you can cite this.

S&P 500 members citing effective tax rates of 0% in past twelve months, ranked by market value (in billions):

Verizon: $146.4

MetLife: $53.9

Eaton: $32.7

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals: $29.6

Public Storage: $29.5

Ventas: $19.3

Avalonbay Communities: $17.4

Agilent Technologies: $16.9

Vornado Realty Trust: $16.8

Boston Properites: $16.7

Seagate Technology: $15.9

Broadcom: $15.7

News Corp.: $9.8

Lam Research: $8.8

Kimco Realty: $8.6

Waters: $8.5

Macerich: $8.3

Plum Creek Timber: $8.4

PulteGroup: $6.4

Apartment Investment & Management: $4.3

Perkin Elmer: $4.2

From around the web.

From the web site, Badger Democracy

In 2011, an $8 million tax break for a new Washington DC Whole Foods development raised questions of return on public investment and why public money was even needed:

And why does this project require a special subsidy to move forward in the first place?  This Whole Foods already would qualify for a set of tax incentives for grocery store development, including a 10–year property tax break on the store itself.  Moreover, while some projects near Nationals Park have languished in the recession, this area is likely to be part of the emerging rebound, thanks in part to prior public investment by the District.  Finally, if a Whole Foods will revitalize this neighborhood as it did in Logan Circle, why won’t private market interests step up to make it happen?

In the same year, Whole Foods received $4.2 million in tax subsidies to open a Detroit area store, uncovered only by FOIA requests:

The documents, obtained by the Chaldean News under the Freedom of Information Act and provided toCrain’s, show that Whole Foods is asking for $4.2 million in city, state and federal incentives to open a store in downtown Detroit.

According to the exchanges, the 21,000-square-foot project is expected to get $1.5 million in local and community foundation funds, $1.2 million in federal tax credits under the New Market program and $1.5 million in state incentives.

Michael Sarafa, president of the Bank of Michigan and co-publisher of The Chaldean News, questions the use of incentives to lure a national grocery chain to Detroit. He said there are 83 independently-owned grocers in the city, many of them owned by Chaldeans, who did not receive incentives.


Controversial “TIF” funds are being used for construction of a Whole Foods-anchored development in St. Louis, hardly in a blighted area.

The new Whole Foods development in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago is being partially funded by an $11.3 million “TIF” in an already well-developed area.

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