We are a nation being consumed by our own anger, anxieties, disillusionment, and alienation from one another.
They are emotions widely exploited by a vast media empire that employs everyone from late night comedians to early morning news anchors. They are manifest in our tribal politics and social behavior. They are also, of course, manifest in the persona and politics of our President, who rubs them raw when he should be applying soothing salves.
It is Donald Trump, on whom we place much of the blame for this current condition, but the truth is he is not the cause; he is only the result. Continue reading →
A Wall Street Journal story by Robin Sidel looks at a troubling trend in the banking industry. No, not the JPMorgans of the industry losing $2 billion on bad bets, but on small community banks who don’t have the word “billion” anywhere on their balance sheets.
According to her piece: “A growing number of tiny community banks are deciding it’s time to put out the ‘for sale’ sign … many executives of these small lenders are frustrated by costly, new regulations.”
Let’s head into the Way Back Machine: In October, 1975 New York City was on the verge of bankruptcy. Sort of like California in the summer of 2012.
New York’s Democratic Mayor and Governor (Abe Beame and Hugh Carey) came to Washington, DC begging for Federal help. President Gerald Ford said he would veto any bill which would have the effect of taxpayers in, say, Michigan, bailing out New Yorkers whose profligate ways had led them in that fiscal blind alley.
The New York Daily News published a famous front page with a photo of Ford and the blaring headline: Ford to City: Drop Dead. Continue reading →
According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple (neé Apple Computer) “is the most valuable company” in the world. On the heels of its quarterly report last week, stock in Apple reached nearly $620 per share before settling back to end the week at $602.
The WSJ reported that Apple “posted a 94% profit jump to $11.6 billion and a 58.9% revenue increase to $39.2 billion.”
This is not a stock picking column, and that is about everything I know about the stock market, but I wanted to tell you that so that what follows made more sense.
The New York Times published a long piece looking at how Apple cleverly, but legally, has built a tax strategy that saves it billions of dollars. The Times reported that “the company paid cash taxes of $3.3 billion around the world on its reported profits of $34.2 billion last year, a tax rate of 9.8 percent.” Continue reading →
If you are solely disappointed that the Obama $787 billion economic stimulus package has not worked to create millions of new jobs, here’s a $1 trillion economic stimulus program that is guaranteed to work.
Except that this time, it would have zero impact on reducing federal tax revenues, increasing deficits and the national debt and it would all be done by the ‘private sector’, not the public sector.