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Economy

From 2015: Walter Williams talks about free market capitalism

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You have to love Walter Williams. He is one of the few African-Americans (only with Thomas Sowell) who understands what our free market capitalism is all about. In his Prager U video that he did back in 2015, he truly breaks it down in a language people can understand but yet it does take some critical thinking to understand what Williams is trying to convey.

If you don’t believe that free markets don’t punish corporations (unless our government steps in and saves a few like GM and Chrysler), think again. Whatever happened to TG&Y, ALCO Stores, Montgomery Ward, Circuit City just to name a few. All of them went under, although Circuit City and Wards have poised to make comebacks in as online and very brick and mortar of some kind. Currently in 2018, Toys R Us and KMart have been on the ropes and are likely to go under themselves.

Don’t listen to a media that is more interested in pushing Marxism and ushering it in America. The result of that will be the same in other nations. A Fabulous Disaster.

One store I miss personally is the Warner Bros. Studio Store.

Someone who wants to be a voice for liberty and freedom. Telecom (Radio/TV) Pikes Peak Community College 1993-1998, BS Journalism, minor Political Science, Colorado State University-Pueblo 1999-2004

Democrats

Jim Koch likes tax cuts, so Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone is boycotting Samuel Adams beer

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Jim Koch likes tax cuts so Mayor Joseph A Curtatone is boycotting Samuel Adams beer

Some of us don’t agree with the President generally but appreciate some of the actions he’s taken. This is a reasonable stance; you don’t have to agree with someone philosophically or even like them personally to like some of their actions. Arguably the best thing the GOP Congress and President Trump have done since taking power are the tax cuts. What’s not to like?

Unfortunately, many on the left don’t feel the same way. Whether they’re against a particular policy or simply against against anything that starts with the letter “T” and ends in the word “rump,” they will go out of their way to not only protest the President’s actions but demonize anyone who doesn’t feel the same way. Such is the case with a Massachusetts mayor, Joseph A. Curtatone, and his fresh boycott against Samuel Adams beer.

Did they ship jobs overseas? No. Did they rip off consumers, lie about their products, or cheat on their taxes? No. Perhaps they espoused a Biblical worldview – many liberals hate that and will demonize any prominent people who do such a dastardly deed. No, they didn’t do that either.

What Jim Koch, co-founder and chairman of the Boston Beer Company who produces Samuel Adams, did was give praise about the tax cuts that are saving American tax-payers real money. At a dinner the President held for various business owners, Koch didn’t show support for the President or any of his more controversial policies. He likes the tax cuts, as any fair-minded and money-conscious American should. Unfortunately, that was enough to make Curtatone whip out his social justice warrior card and call for a boycott.

Even the Boston Herald had to question Curtatone’s stance.

Editorial: Mayor Walsh stands against Boston Beer boycott

http://www.bostonherald.com/opinion/editorials/2018/08/editorial_mayor_walsh_stands_against_boston_beer_boycottIt was an important, symbolic step for Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh to come out against any boycott of Samuel Adams ale, as Somerville Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone and others vowed to never drink the Boston Beer Co. product again.

Walsh told the Herald’s Brooks Sutherland, “I think that if you start talking about boycotting something against elected officials, including the president, there’s not much stuff we’d be able to buy in the country.”

When a liberal politician wants to make headlines, they fight against a perceived injustice. That means Curtatone believes the tax cuts were unjust. The people of Somerville should remember that next time they go to the balo

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Democrats

Elizabeth Warren introduces dangerous anti-capitalist bill

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Elizabeth Warren introduces dangerous anti-capitalist bill

Elizabeth Warren made a big announcement this week in introducing her new bill called the “Accountable Capitalism Act.” Her bill aims to “eliminate skewed market objectives” and return America to an era in which “American corporations and American workers did well together.” It’s unclear when the utopia like conditions were according to Warren; however her website lists the 1980’s as the time period in which corporations shifted focus to maximizing shareholder returns. In any business college, it is taught that the job of a CEO is to maximize shareholder wealth. Senator Warren wants to shift this mentality with her new bill. In the statement on her website, she asserts that the “shift” has led to booming profits and less reinvestment into the companies themselves. She claims that wages have not increased despite booming corporate profits. Elizabeth Warren then moves to make the argument that the top 10% owns 84% of American stock and only 50% of households own stock. Thus, she claims, that this reinforces a cycle of the rich getting richer. This is a growing socialist sentiment that poor people, and even middle class, are incapable of affording stock. The main bullet points are outlined below. Read the text of the bill here.

Office of United State Corporations (more government!)

The bill creates a new administration within the Department of Commerce. Corporations earning more than $1 billion in revenue are required to obtain a charter from the federal government, per this new created office. The charter obligates these large corporations to consider the interests of all stakeholders. Failure to obtain this permit to exist results in loss of corporation, which in business terms mean, it would no longer be treated as a separate entity. Therefore there would be no liability protection. The Director of this office would be a Presidential appointee and requires Senate confirmation. The term last four years. Warren seeks to create a new and powerful tentacle of the Federal government.

Employee Chosen Board of Director

Employees, not shareholders, will have the ability to choose no less than 40% of a company’s board of director. This bullet point is perhaps the most ridiculous and anti-capitalist. Company boards serve to set goals for the company. The board is usually chosen by investors. In the world of private investment, the board of directors is a bargaining chip for control of the company, as opposed to just percentage of stock. Warren’s bill doesn’t outright say it, but she wants unions to control company boards. Meaning instead of the company’s interest, the board will be powerful weapon of the union. Boards start out as founding members, investors and their appointees, and neutral parties because entrepreneurs and investors craft such interesting deals. Insisting that 40% must be elected by employees renders a board relatively useless for small investment worthy companies or inflates company boards well beyond what they should be for their size (ie small company with GM size board.) This will possibly lead to more empowered officers and weakened boards so that CEOs can perform their fiduciary responsibilities without a labor union threatening their disposal. This could also make companies more risk adverse because undoing mistakes, laying off workers, and other rainy day measures are now more difficult to undo. Ultimately this would empower worse CEOs, ones who aren’t as interested in shareholder wealth. The Securities and Exchange Commission along with the National Labor Relations Board are responsible for enforcing this part of the act, as further indication that this applies to all corporations. Stiff daily fines are to be imposed for failing to comply.

Government control of stock options

Elizabeth Warren claims top executives are compensated mostly with stock options. Her bill restricts these executives ability to sell their shares for five years so that they can focus on long term company success. Basically these executive will be given stock, but will have no real ownership of that stock. This would be the government restricting private property. These types of issues are best left to corporations and shareholders who already impose vesting periods to ensure the same exact goal.

Supermajority for political expenditures (not for unions)

This is a jab at Citizens United because Elizabeth Warren and others are butthurt about the outcome of a critical first amendment case Supreme Court case. It forces company shareholders to vote in order for a corporation to make any political expenditures. It imposes a 75% supermajority threshold. Conspicuously absent from this requirement are labor unions.

Revoking of charter

The corporate charter resembles a “rule of club” for large companies. If they don’t meet the requirements of their charter or have a history of illegal activity, they will have their corporation status removed in time. The question is how political will the enforcement of these charters be? Will there be a separate set of rules for democrats and republicans? If the rest of government is any indication, the answer is clearly foreshadowed.

Closing Thoughts

The socialist movement wants to fundamentally change the purpose of starting a business and running a company. This would most certainly lead to lower caliber CEOs. The bill makes no mention of labor unions yet it’s intentions are clearly to empower them in companies that still allow them and to create politics in organizations that do not. This ideas pressed fourth in this bill are sure to gain traction, just as “Medicare For All” became a socialist rallying point. It brings about questions of how business literate politicians like Senator Warren are? Do they fundamentally misunderstand what a corporation is, or do they not care? The bill aims to reduce a shareholder’s power and return on investment which will only hurt our economic growth. While Elizabeth Warren’s bill isn’t socialist, it is heavily anti-capitalist.

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Economy

Trump expects Harley to lose money on his behalf one way or the other

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Trump expects Harley to lose money on his behalf one way or the other

American motorcycle motorcycle manufacturer Harley Davidson is in a tough spot. Tariffs imposed from Europe against imported motorcycles in response to President Trump’s tariffs on steel and aluminum have forced Harley to consider moving some production to Europe to avoid the tariffs. It’s a fair response, but the President is having none of it.

He has ratcheted up calls to boycott Harley over the potential move.

It’s imperative for President Trump’s reelection that these tariffs work. If they have the expected effect of bringing some jobs back while pushing others away, then they will be painted by the media as a failure. He knows this and therefore must do everything he can to keep jobs in America even if it means painting one of the most beloved American companies as the bad guys.

Trump backs boycott of Harley Davidson in steel tariff dispute

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-harley-davidson-tariffs-trump/trump-backs-boycott-of-harley-davidson-in-steel-tariff-dispute-idUSKBN1KX0J9The Wisconsin-based motorcycle manufacturer announced a plan earlier this year to move production of motorcycles for the European Union from the United States to its overseas facilities to avoid the tariffs imposed by the trading bloc in retaliation for Trump’s duties on steel and aluminum imports.

In response, Trump has criticized Harley Davidson, calling for higher, targeted taxes and threatening to lure foreign producers to the United States to increase competition.

My Take

What does he expect them to do? They will lose tens of millions of dollars if they continue to try to export motorcycles to Europe. They will lose even more if they stop selling motorcycles in Europe. If they try to mitigate the damage by moving some operations to Europe, the President wants them to lose money as a result. This, too, will likely result in cuts to the workforce.

In other words, President Trump will make certain Harley Davidson, an iconic American company, loses money and cuts American jobs no matter which direction they go. If he has an alternative for them that does not hurt Americans, I’m sure they’re all ears.

Most tariffs are bad in the 21st century. It’s impractical to believe we can maintain our supremacy as the world’s consumer if we continue to slap tariffs on some of our best trading partners. He either lacks the understanding of how this all works or has chosen to ignore the facts for the sake of spinning it for votes when his term concludes.

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