Category: PLUTOCRATIC POWER

Jeff Bezos’ Quest to Find America’s Dumbest Mayor

DEAN BAKER—Nonetheless, politicians are unlikely to be deterred from such bidding wars, since the victory of landing a big investment is highly visible and immediate. A mayor or governor gets to take part in a big ceremony with the CEO of a major corporation touting the thousands of jobs that are being created. The costs in the form of lost tax revenue that may be needed to support schools, infrastructure and other essential services will only be seen years down the road.

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The “fractured world”: Plutocrats convene in Davos amid war and great-power conflict

ANDRE DAMON—The threat of war was only one of the threats vexing the Davos elite. The past week saw a spate of warnings that red-hot stock markets are on the verge of a meltdown. William White, the chairman of the OECD review board, declared this week: “All the market indicators right now look very similar to what we saw before the Lehman crisis.” Among the most contentious summit panels was one titled, “Could 2018 Be the Year of the Next Financial Crisis?”

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Freedom Rider: Robert Mercer Rules

MARGARET KIMBERLE— As for Mercer, “He’s happy if people don’t trust the government. And if the president’s a bozo? He’s fine with that. He wants it all to fall down.” It must be pointed out that Democrats have played their own role in destroying an array of governmental protections. Bill Clinton did away with the right to public assistance and was on the verge of a deal with Newt Gingrich to privatize Social Security. Barack Obama bailed out the banks, extended the Bush era tax cuts for the wealthy and began governmental austerity that cut the budget of every federal agency.

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“Fractures, Fears and Failures:” World’s ruling elites stare into the abyss

BILL VAN AUKEN—The Bloomberg Billionaires Index published last month established that the fortunes of the world’s wealthiest 500 billionaires—many of whom will be in attendance—rose 23 percent over the past year, making them $1 trillion richer than at the end of 2016. And the obscene amounts of wealth keep rolling in, with the Dow closing at 26,000 Wednesday, recording its fastest ever 1,000-point rise.

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Democrats and the End(s) of Politics

ROB URIE—Despite the heated rhetoric, Donald Trump’s policies are nearly identical to those of the national Democrats. That Democratic Party loyalists claim great differences suggests first and foremost that they know next to nothing about the policies they claim to support. Bill Clinton and Barack Obama may not have been casual with racist blather the way that Mr. Trump is, but their policies were (so far) more effectively vicious than anything that Donald Trump has done as president.

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