Economic Development?

I have always thought that the promise of ‘economic development’ was a “LIE”…..it is the promise of something that is not going to happen to justify some sort of con perpetrated on the community.

I got thinking about this term more when I watched a piece on the local news…..the head honcho of the country economic development was taunting the building of several small strip malls.executive offices…as a bright world in which the county lives in……

First of all let’s define the term ‘economic development’…..

Economic development is a concerted effort on the part of the responsible governing body in a city or county to influence the direction of private sector investment toward opportunities that can lead to sustained economic growth. Sustained economic growth can provide sufficient incomes for the local labor force, profitable business opportunities for employers and tax revenues for maintaining an infrastructure to support this continued growth. There is no alternative to private sector investment as the engine for economic growth, but there are many initiatives that you can support to encourage investments where the community feels they are needed the most.

That definition is all blue skies and unicorns.

My question is to the city council where is this building economic development?

They built a structure that may remain empty….they employed a couple of guys to erect the structures but where is that economic development?

I mean where these couple of small malls were built sits in an area full of unused space……just two blocks away is a large strip center that sits 90% unoccupied….about one mile away is a large strip mall that is only about 70% occupied and 2 miles away is a strip center that has many open spots for businesses to jump on…..and this does not include the smaller strip malls within a 5 mile radius that sit basically unoccupied…so why were these new malls necessary?

So with this said where is all that ‘economic’ upside?

All this is just my area…..the broader look at local development is just as bleak…..

The average minimum wage in my county is $7.25…that is about half what is needed for a living wage.

So again I ask what ‘economic development’?

Land speculators and contractors are the only people making out like bandits…..by using the BS of ‘economic development’….there is few economic benefits for the average worker in this county.

My next question is….how with so many open spaces for businesses to expand how does a contractor/developer get the cash to build something that may go unused?

Of course I am told that these new structures will benefit the community…..and how does a empty office space enhance my community?

Just who will benefit from this non-existent economic development?

What makes anyone on the council think that business will rush to snap up this new space?

Are the objectives of development met by these structures….those objectives are 1) provide for basic needs.  2) Raise the level of living.  3) Expand the range of economic and social choices.

These structure fail.

How does these ‘new’ buildings offer any of those?  Just who profits from this wish and a hope of destroy land and cutting down trees om a wish and a hope?

My thought is that if we truly wanted economic development then maybe paying livable wages would do more than the promise of empty buildings.

The council needs to design a plan and program for filling empty spaces before the destruction of more land….the council works for the people of the city and should not bow to the cash and wishes of developers….especially on the lie of ‘economic development’.

Just a thought.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Global Minimum Corporate Tax?

Here is an idea that I can support…..but an idea that will be fought tooth and nail by corporations that do not want to pay anything for the right of economic exploitation….

But Biden’s SecTreasury has proposed a plan for a global tax…….

Corporations around the world should pay at least a 15% tax on their earnings, the Treasury Department said Thursday as part of its push for a global minimum for businesses.

The final rate could go even higher than that, according to a Treasury release that said the 15% minimum is a “floor and that discussions should continue to be ambitious and push that rate higher.”

U.S-based companies currently pay a 21% rate, a level that was slashed during the Trump administration. Previously, the top rate had been 35%.

Under a proposal from President Joe Biden, the tax rate would be lifted to 28%, part of a plan to raise levies on both companies and the highest earners.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has been touting the benefits of a global corporate minimum tax rate that she said would discourage companies from relocating domiciles to other countries to cut their tax burdens even though most of their operations are in the U.S.

Yellen’s Treasury believes “that the international tax architecture must be stabilized, that the global playing field must be fair, and that we must create an environment in which countries work together to maintain our tax bases and ensure the global tax system is equitable and equipped to meet the needs of for the 21st century global economy,” the department said in a news release.

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/05/20/us-proposes-global-minimum-corporate-tax-rate-of-15percent-with-an-eye-on-something-even-higher.html

Sadly I do not see this as a plan that will make it….corporations own a lot of politicians around the world and they will do as they are told…..

I may have been pre-mature in my doubt….

The Group of Seven wealthy democracies agreed Saturday to support a global minimum corporate tax of at least 15% in order to deter multinational companies from avoiding taxes by stashing profits in low-rate countries, per the AP. G7 finance ministers meeting in London also endorsed proposals to make the world’s biggest companies—including US-based tech giants—pay taxes in countries where they have lots of sales but no physical headquarters. Britain’s Treasury chief Rishi Sunak, the meeting’s host, said the deal would “reform the global tax system to make it fit for the global digital age and crucially to make sure that it’s fair, so that the right companies pay the right tax in the right places.”

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who attended the London meetings, said the agreement “provides tremendous momentum” toward reaching a global deal that “would end the race-to-the-bottom in corporate taxation, and ensure fairness for the middle class and working people in the US and around the world.” France cheered Saturday’s agreement and claimed credit for acting as its catalyst. “We made it! After 4 years of battle, a historic accord was reached with G7 member states,” French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire tweeted. “France can be proud!” The endorsement from the G7 could help build momentum for a deal in wider talks among more than 140 countries being held in Paris as well as a Group of 20 finance ministers meeting in Venice in July.

Will this be just another great idea that will be thrown on the trash pile of good ideas.

A side thought for my reader to ponder…

As long as I am writing about globally….how would you like to work for McDonalds…..in Denmark…..

The agreement with McDonalds does not only include salary per. hour and 6 weeks holiday. There is extra charge for evening and night work. Payment for seniority, holiday payment (Easter and Christmas for example, (100%), on top of all payment there is an extra 6.85%, Pension plan for employees from the age of 20 (12%).

In the Danish labor market, all employees have 5 weeks paid holiday by law. Some of the things that are extra in the companies that have a collective agreement, just like McDonalds, is one week more (called Feriefridage). So, the answer to your question is yes. McDonalds employees have 6 weeks’ paid vacation for all.

McDonald’s workers in Denmark truly make more than $20 an hour.

Do McDonald’s Workers in Denmark Make $22 an Hour?

Interesting!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Biden/Harris Financial Policies

Time to look at Biden and what are his financial policies and will they do any good for the American people…..

While Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is unlikely to prioritize a financial industry crackdown if he wins on Nov. 3, he is expected to take a much tougher line than Trump and his former boss President Barack Obama.

Banks and investors were preparing for a Biden victory over the weekend after Trump tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday, in a blow for his campaign.

Here are some of the key areas his administration and agency picks would likely focus on.

THE COMMUNITY REINVESTMENT ACT
HOUSING FINANCE
CONSUMER PROTECTIONS, CREDIT REPORTING
CLIMATE CHANGE RISKS
BANKRUPTCY REFORM
POSTAL BANKING
 
All pretty good ideas….but knowing what our politics is like I d not think they will be nearly as all powerful as they pretend….after special interests get through they will be toothless tigers….as usual.
 
The tax policies of the Biden/Harris team is also good ideas…..

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have an opportunity to cut poverty in America in half. A new study finds that the Democratic ticket has put forward or endorsed a set of proposals that, taken together, could add up to the biggest anti-poverty plan in decades.

Three specific measures — Biden’s plan to make Section 8 housing vouchers universal; congressional Democrats’ plan for a $3,000-a-year child allowance ($3,600 for kids under 6), and Harris’s LIFT Act proposing new tax credits for low-income households — would have lowered the poverty rate from 12.7 percent to 6.5 percent if they had been adopted in 2018, according to researchers at the Center on Poverty and Social Policy at Columbia. That’s 20.2 million fewer people living in poverty.

The reduction in child poverty would be larger still, from 13.7 percent to 3.6 percent. Only about a quarter as many children would remain in poverty after the policy package’s adoption.

https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/21456242/joe-biden-poverty-checks-kamala-harris

Once again good plan…but it will probably not hold up to the brutal American political process….more promises that will go unfulfilled thanx to lobbyists and cash spread around.

Learn Stuff!

VOTE!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

Trump’s “Platinum Plan”

Donald the Orange has issued a new economic plan aimed at improving relations with the Black community…..it will be called “the Platinum Plan”….

President Trump took aim at Black voters Friday by offering a new multi-billion-dollar plan and taking a jab at his Democratic rival, CNN reports. “No one in politics today has done more to hurt the Black community than Joe Biden,” Trump said at a campaign event in Atlanta. “Joe Biden should not be demanding your support; he should be begging for your forgiveness.” Trump’s campaign said his so-called “platinum plan” would funnel up to $40 billion in government funding—and perhaps hundreds of billions more from the private sector—for Black business loans, per NPR. White House advisor Ja-Ron Smith called it “historic” for a GOP president to focus “on the economic empowerment of the Black community.”

Trump’s plan is packed with other planks, like designating Antifa and the KKK as “terrorist organizations” and making Juneteenth a national holiday, Fox News reports. It would also aim to improve healthcare for Black communities; allow Black churches to vie for federal resources; install “diversity training” in law enforcement; and boost Black educational opportunities by closing “failing schools” in favor of “full school choice and education opportunity.” The rollout comes amid gloomy polling numbers for Trump among Black voters, who prefer Biden by roughly a 75-point margin. Forbes, meanwhile, runs through Trump’s plan and says “it’s not clear” where much of the funding will come from.

Antifa?  Has anyone of these mental midgets ever taken a look that is?  It is NOT…I repeat NOT a single group but a loose organization of people who despise fascists so how will they decide which ones will be the ‘terrorists’?  A lame ass attempt to look strong….instead that appear to be idiots.

He, Trump, looks desperate…..this is an ambitious plan that will probably never see the light of day if he is re-elected……but I am being too pessimistic….here is his “Plan”……

The president on Friday is expected to roll out details of what the campaign is calling the “Platinum Plan,” which details “opportunity,” “security,” “prosperity,” and “fairness” for the Black Community.

The president’s plan, according to the campaign, will increase access to capital in Black communities by almost $500 billion, help to create 500,000 new Black-owned businesses, and help to create 3 million new jobs for the Black community.

(FOX News)

This from the president that has done more for black people than even Lincoln (that is my favorite bullshit line of all time)

But please take some time and look over his new “Plan” and tell me what you think.

Click to access president-trump-platinum-plan-final-version.pdf

Does this truly sound like a Plan that Trump would offer?

To me it does not…..some campaign worker wrote it in a desperate attempt to find some Afro-American voters for November.

Another one if my thoughts is if this is so damn important why was it nor part of the non-existent GOP platform?

This is a con job!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Trump On Screwing The People

Even if you are an ardent supporter of Donald the Orange you are about to be bent over and hammered hard by the Trump administration…..

First, those people that are collecting unemployment benefits……

White House Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow made clear that the Trump administration will not allow an extension of emergency jobless aid to workers laid off during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’re paying people not to work,” the former Wall Street executive declared. “Almost all businesses,” he said, understand that the additional unemployment benefit “is, in effect, a disincentive” for people to get back to work.

Three months ago, Congress passed the CARES Act. While handing vast sums to big business, it included a $600-per-week emergency payment by the federal government to supplement the far lower state unemployment benefits, which are, for example, capped in Michigan at approximately $350 per week.

More than 20 percent of the US workforce—some 36.5 million people—have been thrown out of work because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/06/16/pers-j16.html

On the retirement front…..how many of my readers will depend on a 401(k) for their retirement?

If you do then you had better read this and understand what will happen to your retirement fund……

With the American public’s attention consumed by the Covid-19 pandemic and mass protests against police brutality, the U.S. Labor Department earlier this month quietly gave corporate sponsors of retirement plans something they’ve been agitating over for years: a government green light to invest workers’ savings into funds managed by notoriously predatory private equity firms.

The move, announced on June 3 by Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia, allows large managers of 401(k) plans and individual retirement accounts (IRAs) to put workers’ retirement savings into private equity investments that offer the possibility of huge returns—and devastating losses.

U.S. workers “have socked away $6.2 trillion in 401(k) accounts and another $2.5 trillion in IRA accounts.”

“If just 5 percent of the money in these retirement funds were available to private equity,” wrote Appelbaum, “it would be a windfall of $435 billion—real money even to private equity millionaires and billionaires.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/06/16/leading-us-retirees-lambs-slaughter-trump-labor-dept-quietly-offers-401k-plans

While retirees are pissing and moaning about being locked down and they cannot get a haircut….Donald the Orange and his thieves are being permitted to rape your retirement fund.

And yet he still has some undying support….I question their mental process….as a wise man once said….”you can’t fix stupid” or maybe I should say “stupid is as stupid does”…..

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Closing Thought–18Oct19

How do we fight economic injustice?

Appears AOC, one of Trump’s nemeses on the Hill, has a plan….a plan that she has put into motion as a bill/law…..

Representative Ocasio-Cortez believes that we must build a just society to protect our communities and uplift our neighbors. A Just Society legislation aims to combat one of the greatest threats to our country, our democracy, and our freedom: economic inequality

A Just Society aims to ensure that we are on a path towards shared prosperity for all. A just society provides a living wage, safe working conditions, and healthcare. A just society acknowledges the value of immigrants to our communities. A just society guarantees safe, comfortable, and affordable housing. By strengthening our social and economic foundations, we are preparing ourselves to embark on the journey to save our planet by rebuilding our economy and cultivate a just society. To learn more, follow the links below.

https://ocasio-cortez.house.gov/ajs

Check out her plan and then tell me your thoughts.  Please keep the lies of socialism to a minimum…..if you cannot be constructive and unbiased……. then move along.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

We Need An Economic Bill Of Rights

This election cycle there seems to be a call from the Left for a new idea they call the “Economic Bill of Rights”…….Bernie, Warren, Harris et al will call for this to be the law of the land….

I agree…there needs to be some sort of economic reset so that poverty does not become the “law of the land”….

The problem with this idea is that it is old hat…..this idea was floated by FDR back in 1944 just before he died….and the idea apparently died with him for Truman made no mention of it…..there were some of the same ideas being floated by Dems for 2020…..

Among these are:

  • The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation;
  • The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation;
  • The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living;
  • The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad;
  • The right of every family to a decent home;
  • The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health;
  • The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment;
  • The right to a good education.

http://www.ushistory.org/documents/economic_bill_of_rights.htm

What was old is new again!

It’s time to think big. The rules that govern our economy are working best for far too few, at the expense of far too many. While Republicans have sought to dismantle the New Deal and the regulatory apparatus that was developed to protect Americans from an unfettered private sector, Democrats in recent decade have mustered no more than incremental changes to an increasingly unequal and unfair economy. The rise of Donald Trump provides a political lesson for both Democrats and Republicans: People are looking outside the box. Despite the vast gulf between the two major political parties on many issues, on fundamentals both have adhered to a neoliberal agenda of deregulation, reliance on market-based solutions to our social problems, and a devolution of the role of government in ensuring and enforcing Americans’ right to a decent standard of living, economic dignity and economic mobility. 

Direct government intervention for full employment, a cornerstone of the Democratic Party Platform for almost half a century, has been all but forgotten, replaced by a commitment to market liberalization or tax incentives and other subsidies for corporate America to cajole them into hiring more workers. Policies put forth by Hillary Clinton in 2016, which included raising the minimum wage and promoting equal pay for equal work for women, would have improvde the lives of many working Americans – but they do not go nearly far enough.  They do not address the fundamental problem of increasing risk and vulnerability—employment “precarity”—confronting the American workforce.

Let us be clear: Our economic reality is not mere circumstance; these are the result of policy choices.

https://prospect.org/article/economic-bill-rights-21st-century

Ask yourself why the Dem Party forgot this plan until recently.  In an age when Dems were extremely popular why did they abandon such a great program?

I know why…..do you?

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

Now take what you ahe learned and….VOTE!

That “Marshall Plan”

As usual the old professor is about to drop some history on you….was that an eye roll?

Whenever some economic plan comes about it is compared to the Marshall Plan of the 1940s….but since the nation is so damn young now how many actually knows what the Plan was about?

Well I can help with that lack of knowledge……

The Marshall Plan, also known as the European Recovery Program, was a U.S. program providing aid to Western Europe following the devastation of World War II. It was enacted in 1948 and provided more than $15 billion to help finance rebuilding efforts on the continent. The brainchild of U.S. Secretary of State George C. Marshall, for whom it was named, it was crafted as a four-year plan to reconstruct cities, industries and infrastructure heavily damaged during the war and to remove trade barriers between European neighbors – as well as foster commerce between those countries and the United States.

In addition to economic redevelopment, one of the stated goals of the Marshall Plan was to halt the spread communism on the European continent.

Implementation of the Marshall Plan has been cited as the beginning of the Cold War between the United States and its European allies and the Soviet Union, which had effectively taken control of much of central and eastern Europe and established its satellite republics as communist nations.

The Marshall Plan is also considered a key catalyst for the formation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), a military alliance between North American and European countries established in 1949.

https://www.history.com/topics/world-war-ii/marshall-plan-1

But with this gesture of goodwill was not without a bunch of myths…..was not all rainbows and unicorns……

Perhaps the most persistent and enduring myth in modern British history is that the country did badly, in comparison with its European neighbours, out of the Marshall Plan, the scheme of American largesse that funded the reconstruction of war-ravaged western Europe. But it is simply not true.

West Germany received $1.7 billion of postwar aid from the United States, which it invested primarily in capital and infrastructure, paving the way for the Wirtschaftswunder, the postwar economic miracle that turned the country into a manufacturing powerhouse, which, even after the considerable cost of reunification in 1990, it remains.

Britain, as victor, had an understandable sense of entitlement – and let us not forget the nature of the regime that it and its Empire had helped defeat – but, as an indication of the sacrifice it had made, it ended the conflict with an economy more like that of a defeated or occupied nation.

https://www.historytoday.com/archive/editor/marshall-myths

You now know more than you did before reading…..

Learn Stuff!

Class Dismissed!

Modern Monetary Policy

Yep I am about to bore the crap out of my reader…..when it comes to economics the average person glazes over and goes to that “happy place” in the mind until the talk is finished.

But I feel I need to drop some info on my readers……there has been much in the MSM about the Green New Deal and the proposals by a couple of candidates about taxing the rich……

I want to give my reader a look into the policies and the economics of them…..

First the call to “Tax The Rich”……

I don’t consider myself an MMTer, but there is a basic Keynesian concept which has been associated with MMT, which is both true and important. For the federal government, taxes are not about raising revenue, taxes are about reducing consumption to prevent inflation.

The point is that the federal government does not need taxes for revenue, since it can just print money. It instead taxes to create the room in the economy for government spending. This view is sometimes wrongly taken as a “get of jail free” card, where the government can spend whatever it wants without worrying about raising revenue.

That could be true in a deep downturn. However, if the economy is near its full employment level of output, where additional demand will lead to rising inflation, we are pretty much back in the world where we need taxes to offset spending. Any major increase in government spending will lead to higher inflation, unless we have higher taxes or have some other mechanism to reduce demand in the economy.

https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/02/20/modern-monetary-theory-and-taxing-the-rich/

Next how about that Green New Deal that is getting the conservs lathered up to the point that they resurrect a fear from the 1950s……

Much of the Democratic Party, including almost the entire pack of contenders for the Democratic presidential nomination, has embraced the concept of a Green New Deal (GND). This is an ambitious plan for slashing greenhouse gas emissions, while at the same time creating good-paying jobs, improving education, and reducing inequality.

At this point, the specific policies entailed by these ambitious goals are largely up for grabs, as is the question of how to pay for this agenda. One way of paying for it, borrowing from the economic doctrine know as Modern Monetary Theory (MMT), is that we don’t have to.

Modern Monetary Theory argues that a government that prints its own currency is not constrained in its spending by its tax revenue. Some on the left have argued that we can just print whatever money we need to finance a GND. This claim does not make sense.

 
All this is possible…it will NEVER fly with conservs who live and die on tax cuts……a real shame….for this countries needs big ideas once again…..the Repubs are NOT those people.

Those Inevitable Sanctions

Sanctions seems to be the word of the Trump administration…..we have imposed sanctions on Iran, China, Russia, Venezuela and several others…..sanctions are the only diplomatic tactic the president and his band of slow thinking slugs have in their book of “things to do”…..

Recently the Trump admin has issued more sanctions against Venezuela….because they are subverting democracy (at least that is the excuse….this time)……

Personally I do not believe that these sanctions will work without covert action by one of our shadowy groups…sanctions do not work as a sole penalty…..they are basically a feel good attempt to control another nation.

Economic sanctions are the penalties of choice for the start of hostilities with any given nation…..the US uses this penalty liberally (that is with a small “L”)……in recent history sanctions have been imposed in Iraq, Iran, Venezuela (most recently) and in all that time what has it accomplished?

Good question, right?

But what is included in “sanctions”?

The Council on Foreign Relations defines sanctions as “a lower-cost, lower-risk, middle course of action between diplomacy and war.” Money is that middle course, and economic sanctions are the means. Some of the most common punitive financial measures include:

  • Tariffs: Surcharges on imported goods, often imposed to aid domestic industries and markets.
  • Quotas: Limits on the number of goods that may be imported or exported. 
  • Embargoes: Restrictions on or cessation of trading with a nation or bloc of nations. These can include limiting or banning travel by individuals to and from nations.
  • Non-tariff barriers: These are designed to make foreign goods more expensive by complying with onerous regulatory requirements.
  • Asset seizure/freeze: Capturing or holding the financial assets of nations, citizens, or preventing the sale or moving of those assets. 

If the US is honest then they would also state that sanctions only work about 30% of the time…..that is not a good chance for success.

If the reader would like more info on what sanctions are about………https://www.cfr.org/backgrounder/what-are-economic-sanctions

I am opposed to these types of punitive action because they seldom have the intended result of punishing the elites and leadership of any given nation instead the average person suffers far more than the intended targets.

Economic sanctions have long been used as a foreign policy tool, sometimes perceived as the tool of choice for nations where diplomacy has failed to yield desired results. Yet as widely used as they are, and despite the fact that some sanctions may remain in place for years, they generally fail to achieve their objectives. One of the most definitive studies on the effectiveness of sanctions — covering the period from 1915 to 2006 — has shown that comprehensive sanctions are effective at best 30 percent of the time, and that the more comprehensive the level of sanctions, the lower their degree of success. In spite of this, sanctions remain one of the few internationally accepted means (short of military conflict) of attempting to change the behavior of national leaders.

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/daniel-wagner/do-sanctions-work_b_7191464.html

Again the people of the targeted nation suffer far more than the elites…..so the conclusion is that economic sanctions have a dismal record of success…….of course the establishment will point to the success of sanctions against South Africa in the 1980s…..they will ignore the failures like Iraq in the 1990s, Iran since 1979……

In short economic sanctions, in my opinion, are a worthless exercise that punish NO one but the people to the targeted nation……diplomacy is more effective (at least it was prior to the Trump presidency)……