Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Circling Vultures

There is a circling collection of vultures trying to finish off the economy they already have just about exterminating by directing all wealth to the mogul horde. The next attack may just end the struggle. If we can't get a reversion of prosperity back out of that deep pit that the right wing has dug for us, there will be no spending power.

Of course, without living wage, the worker can't become that consumer our economy is based on. Anyone who's watched the consumer being strangled for the past decade has seen that fact play out, creating the meltdown we're experiencing now. For the truly voracious appetite that wingers have developed, nothing short of complete collapse is enough.

Not in this economy.

That’s Intel Corp.’s argument against new taxes on overseas income. It’s Overstock.com Inc.’s objection to making unions easier to form. Ditto Lockheed Martin Corp.’s case against scrapping production of the F-22 jet.

U.S. companies are stepping up their fight against President Barack Obama’s proposals not aimed squarely at reviving the economy. They say Obama is trying to do too much, taking the focus off fixing credit markets and proposing ideas that may hurt rather than help.

“There are so many priorities that there is no priority,” said Bruce Josten, the chief lobbyist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the largest business lobbying group. “There is nothing more important than fixing the housing and financial markets.” Obama “is saying we can do it all at once.”

Making an issue of an economy that shrank 6.2 percent last quarter, the steepest plunge in 27 years, is a potent strategy that may derail Obama’s agenda on issues from taxes to climate change, said Jeffrey Berry, a professor of political science who specializes in lobbying at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts.
The tax on overseas income, proposed in Obama’s budget submission last month, might cost companies such as General Electric Co., Exxon Mobil Corp., Caterpillar Inc. and Ford Motor Co. a total of $362 billion, according to an analysis by Height Analytics, a Washington-based investors’ advisory group.

“This is going to be a very big fight,” said William Reinsch, president of the National Foreign Trade Council, which is leading the lobbying against the tax on behalf of companies.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Burger King Holdings Inc., Home Depot Inc. and Overstock.com are trying to stop so-called card check legislation, which would make it easier for employees to approve unions. Labor groups, which spent $100 million in the 2008 campaign to elect Democrats, have made it their top priority this year.

Not the Time

Companies say the plan would increase labor costs.

“Card check is a misguided proposal -- especially right now,” said Jonathan Johnson, president of Salt Lake City-based Overstock.com, the Internet seller of discounted name-brand goods.

Of course, it would not occur to these blinded business interests that no one is out there making the money they crave. There is a growing unemployed segment where workers used to be, but the business community has lost all sense of judgment where living wages are concerned.

As Ireland's president, Mary McAleese, pointed out this morning in a Today Show interview, our economies are hollowed out, with the means of support going to those lacking actual productivity. That sounds like a black hole coming to its final stages, one that our business community seems eager to see implode. Of course, the loudest voices you will hear will be that horde crying for more help from us productive sorts.

Watching the struggle to eat the last bite at the table is pretty revolting. If they can't be stopped, the corporate welfare cheats is soon going to have nothing to feed on but itself.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

They want us all to work at Wal-Mart and eat at McDonald's.

7:27 PM  
Blogger Ruth said...

I'm thinking more laundring and eating from garbage cans.

5:03 AM  

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