Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 23, 2008

An Interesting Business Model

NY gov. sees Wall Street bonus cuts, weak economy

ALBANY, N.Y., July 21 (Reuters) - Wall Street banks and brokerages may cut bonuses for their highly-paid workers by some 20 percent this year, New York Gov. David Paterson said on Monday, estimating that each 10 percent reduction in bonus pay costs the state $350 million in tax revenues.
New York's economy has long been dominated by financial companies. Last year, they paid $33.2 billion in bonuses, ...
Paterson said he was considering lobbying federal officials for aid to entities like Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers and federally-sponsored organizations, referring to mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Hmm.  Ok. That might really work. New York lobbies Washington to give some $350 billion to Lehman, Fannie and the other usual suspects. Then these firms can again pay some $35 billion in bonuses to their managers. Then New York can again tax some $3.5 billion out of those bonuses. Then Paterson can spend that money for lobbying Washington or whatever.

Interesting business model ... where do I sign up ... oh please no, not on the taxpayers side.

Posted by b on July 23, 2008 at 19:08 UTC | Permalink


Unless you're a commissioned officer in the Upper East Side Liberation Army, these kinds of profit-taking opportunities are just something you read about in the papers.

If you were among the Owners of our great Ownership Society, well then, things would be different . . .

Posted by: UESLA | Jul 23 2008 19:21 utc | 1


Banned Camera Catches Bush Sounding off on Economic Crisis.

An ABC-TV outlet in Houston, and now the Houston Chronicle, have posted a video taken at a political fundraiser for Pete Olson, featuring George W. Bush last week -- capturing some embarrassing/revealing moments after, he noted, he had asked cameras to be turned off.

The first moments form the July 18 event find him speaking almost incoherently in admitting, for once, that his friends in big business had screwed up: "There's no question about it. Wall Street got drunk ---that's one of the reasons I asked you to turn off the TV cameras -- it got drunk and now it's got a hangover. The question is how long will it sober up and not try to do all these fancy financial instruments."

Then, making light of the foreclosure crisis, he said: "And then we got a housing issue... not in Houston, and evidently not in Dallas, because Laura's over there trying to buy a house. I like Crawford but unfortunately after eight years of sacrifice, I am apparently no longer the decision maker."

ONE BIG SMASH AND GRAB, and there is evidence it has been going on since H.W.'s Gipper years, in all truth, it is as commenter rdf writes,

"I misread that as "spying on us since the Civil war". I think that would be a bit more accurate.

All that has changed since the 1940's has been that the data storage and gathering methods have gotten more technologically advanced.

I suggest a bit of historical reading on the Palmer Raids, the Pinkerton men used to smash unions (with government cooperation), and the harassment of the left and civil rights movements during the depression and WWII period then add in the secret files of the FBI's Hoover, which were unknown to the AG and the justice department.

Why do you think the Dems caved on the immunity for the telecom companies? Because they knew what was going on, and that it was illegal, and because they don't want their dirty laundry aired any more than do the Bushies.

We live in a quasi-police state with an unaccountable set of secret police agencies that are directed at political dissent, but disguise it by a creating a succession of bogeymen to justify their actions: anarchists, communists, socialists, fifth columnists, terrorists, fellow travelers, islamo-fascists, illegal immigrants...

The nice thing about this routine is that it works every time. The state can always create enough panic to justify clamping down on legitimate political activity.

The government is going to investigate itself and reveal its true activities? Not likely. "

It's not a "conspiracy," friends, it's a BUSINESS PLAN.

Posted by: Uncle $cam | Jul 23 2008 19:25 utc | 2

So, what actions would you take to cure America if you could be president?

Or better, what would you do if you were dictator of America? To cure the economic woes I mean.

Posted by: Buckaroo | Jul 24 2008 10:57 utc | 3

@ Buckaroo (#3)

Genuine, binding regulatory agencies with oversight and enforced corporate accounting transparency would be a step in the right direction.

Posted by: Monolycus | Jul 24 2008 12:05 utc | 4

@Buckaroo - For starters:

Tax rates for above on million income @60+%. Military budget downsizised to 1.8% of GDP. Fed interest rate at real inflation rate +2%. Multi hundred billion infrastructure program for energy independence. Universal healthcare.

Posted by: b | Jul 24 2008 16:27 utc | 5

Slap a tax on gas. Or ration it. Go all out on negawatts - saving electricity. Invest quickly, and massively, in rail of all kinds. Make a national project of all that. (No ethanol subsidies or support for fake green projects.) The hoped for impact would be partly psychological.

Take the financial pain and don’t try to go for a soft landing (which is what I think Bernanke and the rest are trying to do.) Let some of the banks, funds, etc. fail, and default on debt (short version.) That would imply of course bending over for the rest of the world, withdrawing from Irak, etc.

To accomplish that kind of thing, I would nationalize or control some? TV stations, put an end to the 2 party system, the whole electoral system as stands.

Long term - for survival and honor. The present mess can only end very badly for millions of Americans, radical actions are needed.

Posted by: Tangerine | Jul 24 2008 17:26 utc | 6

A few ideas (not all that realistic)

1) Exponentially progressive income tax.
2) A stake in the heart of voodoo economics and the myth of trickle down.
3) Debunking of the myth that justifies privatization on basis of government can't do nothin.
4) Regulation of passing of risk for commissions.
5) Understanding, especially by the press, that the ups and downs of the stock market has nothing to do with value added by production of goods and services.
6) And really difficult: revival of labor unions that are not corrupt.

Posted by: YY | Jul 25 2008 1:24 utc | 7

one more
7) This is hand in hand with 5). A realization that any one person's talents especially in top management of organizations, however brilliant are not worth more than say $500.00 an hour.

Posted by: YY | Jul 25 2008 1:28 utc | 8

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