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Posts Tagged ‘earl blumenauer’

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Oregon is ranked dead last among the fifty states in corporate taxes. That’s why Measure 97 is on the ballot come election day in November. The top federal corporate rate is 35 percent, yet many corporations making billions of dollars a year each pay little or no taxes. In many cases, corporations receive federal tax rebates by the billions on taxes they never paid. That means the effective tax rate for many major corporations is negative. This explains another reality; US corporations are the least taxed of any major industrialized nation, regardless of the myths and lies thrown out by the Fox Propaganda and other networks.

Corporations like Nike currently own such Oregon politicians as Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden, Wall Street congressional representatives Earl Blumenauer, Greg Walden, Suzanne Bonamici and Kurt Schrader. These representatives are always voting to redistribute income from the 99 to the 1 percent on behalf of big corporations. Corporations should be made to pay higher state taxes in Oregon in order to pay the people of Oregon for the use of their politicians.

When you total up all the taxes businesses really pay, and compare that amount to the total corporate profits generated in the state, liberal Oregon is dead last. That’s the best way to compare effective tax rates. Other rankings, like those published by the Tax Foundation, ignore the actual amount of taxes companies pay and focus instead on incidental factors.

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Most state rankings have a fair degree of variability, with states jostling around a bit in the rankings year to year. That Oregon has remained at the bottom of these rankings for the past three years is a strong sign of just how little corporations pay in taxes in the state, compared to the profits they make in the state.

While Oregon lets big corporations skate by and pay low minimum taxes, the state’s schools and services remain critically underfunded. If Oregon’s corporate tax collections were in line with the rest of the country, Oregon would have the revenue it needs to fund strong schools and services that will grow our economy and help hard-working Oregonians get ahead, protect their health, and retire with dignity.

Measure 97 is the solution to Oregon’s low corporate taxes. By focusing a tax increase only on large C corporations, those doing more than $25 million in Oregon sales, Measure 97 will raise significant revenues for the investments that grow Oregon’s economy, all while protecting smaller businesses that are already paying their fair share.

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As Wall Street President Obama readies a last minute desperate push to pass the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) through the lame duck congress after the November elections in his most cowardly action yet as president, large crowds descended on Portland Oregon for the Rock Against the TPP Oregon weekend of action.

Oregonians took action, educated themselves, had fun and enjoyed a great concert! This was part of a nationwide protest tour featuring celebrities such as Golden Globe nominated actress Evangeline Lilly, comedian Hari Kondabolu, and punk rock legends Anti-Flag. The tour next stops in San Francisco on September 9th at Regency Ballroom with an event featuring Jello Biafra, Grammy winning latin alternative band La Santa Cecilia, and riot-grrrl cello legend Bonfire Madigan. Additional tour dates to be announced, for more information visit http://www.RockAgainsttheTPP.org.

The TPP is a massive income and political power redistribution scam from the 99 to the 1 percent, and like NAFTA, it is a clear violation of the US Constitution, which requires the approval of 2/3rds of the US senate. NAFTA only received 61 votes.

Approval of the TPP creates a secret investor court in clear violation of the US Constitution. That court will allow foreign corporations, many of which are owned by US corporations and or have a high number of US investors, to challenge US laws that corporate hacks decide might inhibit future corporate profits.

So if you want to vote to ban a gasoline additive that’s being sold in your areas that has leaked into and poisoned your water system and caused babies to be born without brains, then the foreign corporation loaded with US investors can challenge that law in a secret tribunal in which you won’t be invited. In other words, the politicians who support the TPP, which is nearly the entire Republican Party, and Wall Street Democrats like Barack Obama, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Ron Wyden and Earl Blumenauer are all voting to redistribute your income and your voting rights (in violation of the US Constitution) on behalf of the bottom lines of foreign corporations, but also their US investors.

For information on how the TPP will create greater inequality by paving the legal way for US corporations to export millions of US jobs, click what-the-corporate-propaganda-network-doesnt-want-you-to-know-one-of-the-many-ways-the-trans-pacific-partnership-will-destroy-us-jobs-and-redistribute-massive-income-and-wealth-from-the-99-to-the-1 Percent-JohnHively.Wordpress.com

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A new study by the Pew Research Center shows the US middle class has shrunk from 62 percent of the adult population in 1970 to 50 percent today. In addition, middle class income has shrunk 4 percent since 2000. And all of this has occurred with Democratic Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden, one the architects on the war against the middle class, leading the charge against the middle class on behalf of the 1 percent, first in the US congress, and lately in the US senate.

Every president since Ronald Reagan has been in on this scam. For the past twenty years, Wyden has been the number one congressional champion of income and wealth redistribution scams, such as NAFTA and the Trans Pacific Partnership. The Federal Reserve has bailed out rich investors time after time, and most recently raised interest rates. The latter raised the interest on loans the 99 percent pay to the banks, which will enrich the banks. This action will increase bank profits, raised dividends to the rich folks who own shares of the banks, and raise share prices. Guess who benefits, and guess who loses. And it’s worse than the chart below shows.

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If you subtract the 1 percent with its 37 percent of total national income, the middle class looks considerably smaller than the above graph shows. The median income would shift to the left considerably, and be smaller in the process. Below is a graph based on actual income distribution in which the 1 percent are stealing 37 percent of all income in 2015 compared to just 8 percent in 1980.

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Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden has led and is still leading the attack of the 1 percent against the middle class, and he is responsible for this because of his support for income redistribution agreements, falsely marketed as trade agreements, which shifts jobs overseas. The difference between the old higher US wages and the new lower Chinese, Vietnamese, Mexican, Pakistani and Indian wages go straight into the pockets of the rich via higher corporate earnings, rising share prices, and surging dividends.

The result of the Wyden attack has been to weaken the demand sector of the US economy, since everybody but the 1 percent purchases the goods and services necessary to keep the economy chugging along. The 1  percent, instead, invest their money in politicians like Wyden, Mitch McConnell, Orrin Hatch, Earl Blumenauer, as well as in stocks and bonds and other assets. And this is precisely why we have an economy twice the size of 1980, with a population also about twice the size, but which produces fewer and fewer jobs with declining real wages compared to 1980.

Wyden, Hatch and McConnell are notorious in that they have assumed the rich are not sufficiently rich, and so they are supporting the most massive income redistribution scam in US history, the Trans Pacific Partnership. This will soon be voted on in congress. See What the Corporate News Media Refuses to Tell the Public About The Trans-Pacific Partnership: It’s a Massive Income Redistribution Agreement That Will Drive the Middle Class Further into Poverty, While Enriching the Already Wealthy, And Driving Millions of People into the United States Illegally to Depress US Wages Even More–JohnHively.wordpress.com

For more on this study by the Pew Research Institute, click on the link below.

The Middle Class Is Losing Ground, and Now the Rich Want to Make Certain they lose more ground with the Trans Pacific Partnership-Pew Research Center

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Watch the video above. In it US Senator Bernie Sanders strikes back at the ignorant and incompetent Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan. Greenspan was called “the wizard” because he advocated policies that redistributed income from the 99 to the 1 percent, such as tax cuts for the rich, jobs destroying trade treaties that redistributed income from working folks to the rich, privatization scams, and a ton more. Greenspan was wrong on all accounts, which he admits at the end of the video above.

Bernie Sanders was one of the few, and maybe the only, senator who dared challenge Greenspan and his beliefs. Listening to Sanders makes one realize why he should be president of the United States. He would represent all the people, not just the rich folks, like Obama, Wyden, Blumenauer, Boehner, McConnell, Orrin Hatch and so many others do today.

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Four Graphs that Will Make You Boiling Mad About the Trans Pacific Partnership–Or Why President Obama, along with executives from Nike, Microsoft, Apple and other US corporations Steadfastly Support China’s Currency Manipulations

income inequality

Originally published May 19, 2015 by John Hively

When China manipulates its currency vis-a-vis the US dollar it increases the profits of US job exporters that produce stuff in China and exports that cheap stuff to the USA.

That’s most likely why President Obama said he will veto any congressional legislation that seeks to stop the Chinese government from manipulating its currency.

Why do President Obama and executives of US based multinational corporations, like Nike, want the Chinese government to manipulate its currency? And what does this have to do with the Trans Pacific Partnership and Fast Track Authority?

The answer to one of these questions is simple: the TPP will force China to manipulate its currency even more than is currently the case.

Take a look at the graph below. On the left side is the Yuan, which is the Chinese currency. On the bottom line is the dollar. Now look at the two intersecting lines, which is the supply and demand for dollars. In this example, 600 yuan can purchase $100 in the currency markets, which is roughly what the two currencies currently exchange for.

So when Nike, Microsoft or Apple Inc. manufacture a product in China that costs the consumers, say, 600 yuan in China, given the exchange rate, the same product will cost $100 in the United States, after, of course, it is exported from China to the USA. Assume these US corporations have a 25% profit margin. That means these companies get 150 Y profits in China per product, and $25 profit when they export their products to the United States.

The same is true for companies that manufacture products in the USA, and then export them to China. American manufacturing companies earn $25 per $100 of product sold in the USA, and 150 Y when their products are exported from the USA to China.

The government of China has been accused of manipulating the value of its currency. So what happens when it does this? It purchases dollars. This shifts the D1 line to the left, because there are less dollars on the market, which is shown in the graph below as line D2. This makes the Yuan less expensive in terms of dollars.

Why would President Obama encourage the Chinese government to manipulate its currency by threatening to veto US legislation aimed at stopping it? Why would Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden only pay lip service to the evil of Chinese currency manipulation, while apparently supporting it? Why are the higher up folks at Nike, Microsoft, Apple and every US corporation that is producing goods in China for export to the United States against any legislation that seeks to address Chinese currency manipulation? There is a very good reason they’re all for this.

Look at the example in the next graph below. When the Chinese government manipulates it’s currency by purchasing dollars, 800 Y will now purchase $75. Do the math; 600 Y will purchase now $56. What does that mean?

It means that when Nike manufactures a pair of shoes in China which costs 600 Y there, in the US it should cost $56 rather than $100, thanks to China’s currency manipulation, but that rarely happens. The US corporate propaganda machine will lie to you and tell you it makes Chinese imports less expensive. However, the truth is that China’s  manipulation increases the profits of Nike.

Nike still gets 25%, or 150 Y, in profits when its shoes are sold in China. When it exports the same shoes to the USA from China, Nike still gets 25% profit on $56, which is $14 dollars. However, Nike still sells it’s shoes for $100 in the United States, which means another $44 in earnings per pair, in addition to the $14.

That means Nike’s profit margin on a $100 pair of shoes goes from 25% at the old exchange rate to 58% at the new exchange rate. This sends its earnings and stock prices higher. The same thing occurs with Microsoft, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Apple, and every US corporation manufacturing in China, that are exporting their products to the United States.

So who pays the price for this?

You do; if you work for a living in the United States, or if you’re a  small or medium size business owner. Here’s how. Suppose you are a US manufacturer producing shoes in Oregon that sell in the USA for $100. You ship them to China at 600 Y for $100, and earn 150 Y, or $25, in profits. Now suppose the Chinese government, with the encouragement of your corrupt government and many US business leaders, manipulates its currency by purchasing tens of billions upon tens of billions of dollars. The supply of dollars on the international currency markets shrinks, making dollars more expensive, and as noted above, the D1 line shifts to D2, which represents the new supply of money. BTW, the space between D1 and D2 represents the amount of dollars the Chinese purchased.

Those $100 US made shoes now costs 1000 Y in China. Okay, my graph isn’t too high tech, but the actual figure is 1066 Y, if you do the math, but let’s stick with the 1000 Y, for simplicity sake. There’s still a 25% profit margin per pair of shoes, but at the 1000 Y price, there’s not a whole lot of buyers in China. The US manufacturer could lower the price of the shoes to 750 Y, but he or she isn’t making a penny at that price, and they’re still overpriced for the Chinese market. Say goodbye to the Chinese market for all US products at the new exchange rate.

US exports to China are going to shrink quite rapidly under this scenario. This means fewer American jobs, and less wages for everyone. It means less tax dollars going to schools and other government services, it means no retirement pay for a larger percentage of the 99 percent. Rich folks don’t need the money they’re going to steal from us, except to keep the latest stock market bubble surging, at least until it pops. However, greater profits mean the bubble can keep expanding for a while longer.

So how can US corporate leaders and their corrupt politicians encourage the Chinese government to manipulate its currency even more than it already has?

The scams that have been created to do this are called the Trans Pacific Partnership and Fast Track Authority. So what do these two things have to do with Chinese currency manipulation? More importantly, why would the Chinese

government want to engage in currency manipulation?

The answer in one word; Vietnam.

Vietnam is one of the nation’s involved in negotiating the Trans Pacific Partnership. As you can see from the graph below, China’s annual minimum wage is nearly twice that of Vietnam. The wages in China at those Nike and Microsoft and Apple and Hewlett-Packard factories and their suppliers and contractors and subcontractors have been going up rapidly over the past fifteen years. Those labor costs have been able to go up because the Chinese government has increased the profit margins of its US manufacturers by manipulating its currency. But there’s another reason why China needs to manipulate its currency vis-a-vis the dollar.

As you can see from the map below, there are nearly 313,000 Nike workers toiling in Vietnam, and nearly 250,00 in China. Vietnam clearly has lower labor costs than those in China. The Chinese government, however, can offset its labor cost disadvantage by manipulating its currency. So it can keep those jobs in China, and still allow the wages of Chinese workers to expand. But that might not be the case should the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) become a reality.

Tariff is another word for tax. When a US company like Nike manufactures its products in Vietnam, and then exports them to the US, a tariff is charged against the products of between 10 and 15 percent. So another $10 to $15 dollars is added to the cost of a $100 pair of Nike’s Vietnamese made shoes exported to the USA. That means less profits, lower dividends, and lower share prices than would otherwise be the case without tariffs. The US tariffs on US corporate goods manufactured in Vietnamese factories helps to offset some of the Vietnamese labor cost advantages vis-a-vis the cost of Chinese labor.

Under the TPP, should it become law, those tariffs will likely be gone, giving Vietnam a much larger labor cost advantage over Chinese workers.

In which case, the Chinese government will have two options; let millions of Nike and Dell and Apple and Microsoft jobs head south to Vietnam, along with the jobs of contractors and subcontractors, or manipulate its currency even more, which means all of those US corporations manufacturing stuff in China for export to the US will see unprecedented and explosive growth of their profits; and all of this will occur at the expense of small and medium sized US companies that make stuff in the United States and export them to China.

That means several unpleasant things will occur to the US economy: US unemployment will grow with the TPP, as exports to China diminish, inequality in wealth and income will continue to increase during the reign of Obama and Wyden, the stock market bubble will continue to expand, the coming stock market crash will be even worse than imaginable, US businesses will need to export more US jobs to China, and all of these bad things will trickle down to more crowded classrooms, less government services, reduced wages, fewer jobs, more poverty, and much more negative stuff for the 99 percent. However, the super rich will become even more super rich. And Chinese currency manipulation will not be the only thing in the TPP contributing to all of these things. See https://johnhively.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/how-the-trans-pacific-partnership-will-destroy-american-jobs-by-destroying-us-exports/

The political game in the US over the TPP and Fast Track Authority currently being played out is a complete farce.

Start with Fast Track Authority, which President Obama, Nike, Microsoft, Ron Wyden, Orrin Hatch, Mitch McConnell and just about every major US corporate CEO and investor desperately want Obama to have. Fast track will limit congressional debate on trade deals, it will scuttle any possible congressional amendments, and eliminate the use of the filibuster in the senate to stop the TPP. Fast track needs to pass through both houses of congress.

As a condition for bringing Fast Track Authority to a debate on the floor of the US senate, on May 13, a number of Democrats who traditionally vote to redistribute income from the 99 to the 1 percent (Ron Wyden, Harry Reid, Patty Murray, Heidi Heitkamp, Bill Nelson, Tim Kaine, Claire McCaskell, and Ben Cardin) agreed to first bring a vote for a bill by which the US will crackdown somehow on China for manipulating currency.

These folks know such a bill may not pass the senate, much less the house of representatives. If it did pass, then it will sit on Obama’s desk until Fast Track Authority passes both chambers of congress. Then he will veto the currency manipulation bill. There’s a ton of income to be redistributed from the 99 to the 1 percent resting on his shoulders.

Then the above senators will pretend to the folks back home that they did all that they could, when in fact, they did nothing when they could have done something to protect the folks back home from the TPP.

Every US senator and every US house representative knows this is the game, and many are willing to play this deadly game so as to justify their support for giving President Obama Fast Track Authority, even though the TPP will likely rip out the guts of the middle class, as well as the US economy.

If the above named Democrats were at all serious about Chinese currency manipulation, then they would agree to wait until Wall Street President Barack Obama signed the bill into law before opening debate on fast track authority.  That won’t happen.

Fast Track Authority is the only way the president can ram the TPP through congress. It’s an income and political power redistribution agreement falsely marketed as a trade agreement. Most of those in the know say the TPP is dead if the president doesn’t receive fast track authority. So fast track is the key.

Save the United States. Fight against this madness called Fast Track Authority. The TPP will only create greater trade deficits in the future than is currently the case. As US Congressman Alan Grayson famously and recently said, “You will find that the largest fourteen trade deficits in the history of the world have been the US trade deficits in each of the last fourteen years….What sane person can look at these trade deficits and conclude we need more free trade?”

The political fight over the Trans Pacific Partnership, Fast Track Authority, and Chinese currency manipulation isn’t about sanity; it’s about greed and government corruption. It’s about raising the already soaring share prices, dividends and earnings of US corporations that have exported millions of US jobs to China and other third world nations, and doing so at the expense of everybody else. It’s about redistributing your standard of living to a small minority of overly rich people who have corrupted and rigged your government in favor of themselves. It’s about redistributing your income and wealth to the 1 percent so as to keep the current stock market bubble expanding. It’s about redistributing the American dream to the 1 percent. It’s about taking the opportunities that once existed for the majority of American citizens and wiping them out by giving 100 percent of all income growth to the 1 percent, and leaving more and more people in poverty.

Currently, the 1 percent steal 37 percent of all income produced in the United States compared to 8 percent in 1980, back when opportunities for financial advancement existed for most Americans. Now the big boys, and the politicians they’ve bought off in one way or the other, want to eliminate your opportunities, as well as those of your children.

Call your senators. Call your congressmen and congresswomen. Stop Fast Track in the senate. Stop the corruption. Stop the insanity.

Over the past fourteen years, since China was granted most favored nation trade status, Nike’s stock price has risen over a thousand percent, from $10 a share to over a $100. Chinese currency manipulation has helped fuel this bubble. So if you purchased a million shares of Nike in the year 2000, today the value of those shares would be over $10 million. With the TPP and Chinese currency manipulation, the value of Nike’s stock will continue to increase, but only at the expense of everybody else. Much of the US stock market bubble is fueled by the same force, and that goes for the stock prices of Apple, Microsoft, Dell, Adidas, Hewlett-Packard and more. And if the TPP goes through, more US manufacturers will need to shift production to China.

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According to the Sierra Club, if the Trans Pacific Partnership become public policy, it will role back the Bush negotiated environmental regulations of the Colombia and South Korea Income Redistribution From the 99 to the 1 Percent Agreements, falsely marketed as free trade agreements. The TPP will, according to the Sierra Club, leave President Obama with a worse overall environmental record than President George W. Bush. wall Street Congressman Blumenauer is once again standing with his Wall Street buddies in destroying the environment for profits that benefit only the 1 percent, and the 99 percent will bare all of the expense in this income and environmental redistribution agreement.

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It’s the hollowing out of the U.S. economy by the super rich as they destroy the middle class, and leave nothing but anti-American economic and political inequality in its wake. The haves are getting more, the have nots are getting less. And the middle class is vanishing.

“Between 2000 and 2013, every single state in the United States saw its share of middle-class families shrink, according to analysis from the Pew Charitable Trusts. In some states like Wisconsin and Ohio, that number fell by more than 5 percentage points; middle-income families now make up less than half of those states’ populations.” The income of the middle class has been redistributed to the 1 percent via free trade treaties, in which middle class jobs are exported to lower wage nations, thanks to Wall Street senators like Ron Wyden, Orrin Hatch and Mitch McConnell, and the difference between the old wages and the new lower wages goes into the pockets of the super rich via higher corporate profits, increased dividends, and soaring share prices.

That means the rich get richer in income and wealth via these income redistribution treaties that are falsely labeled free trade agreements. Income is money coming in, and wealth are things that one owns, like stocks, bonds, and houses.

The 1 percent have seen their share of income grow from 8 percent in 1980 to 21 percent in 2008 to 37 percent in 2015. The US most recent economic expansion is the weakest in job growth and wage increases in US history because the demand for goods and services has been crimped by this massive political campaign to redistribute income from the 99 to the 1 percent, and this is the definition of class warfare. The middle class simply does not have the cash to power the economy like in the old days because the middle class has less of it. The rich have stolen the jobs and cash of the middle class.

It’s not a new narrative but the modern story of inequality goes much deeper than stagnant wage growth. It’s inequality of opportunity as well. It’s something Nobel-prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz has studied and written about a great deal. You can read more on what he thinks has brought about this inequality in the story below. He’s correct to my point of view on all points, but he doesn’t mention the big culprit, free trade agreements.

Free trade agreements are arguably the biggest factor in the growth of income inequality in the United States.

Check out Stiglitz his argument by clicking of the link below.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/nobel-prize-winner-stiglitz—three-steps-to-solving-income-inequality-153834471.html

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