Work harder so speculators can get more

Published on by Systemic Disorder, Oct 26, 2016.

Class warfare is poised to reach a new milestone as this year’s combined total of dividends and stock buybacks by 500 of the world’s largest corporations will exceed US$1 trillion.  

So large is that figure that, for the second year in a row, the companies comprising the S&P 500 Index (a list of many of the world’s biggest corporations) will pay out more money in dividends and stock buybacks than the total of their profits. Yes, times are indeed good for speculators. Not so good for employees — you know, the people who do the actual work — whose pay is stagnant or declining so that those at the top can scoop up still more … //

… Encouraging investment or inflating bubbles? … //
Borrowing to give more to speculators: … //

… Starved for investment:

Setting aside the touch of xenophobia in it, the Times report does at least broach the subject of under-investment. And wealthy investors possessing far more money than can possibly be invested is hardly an unknown phenomenon. As an example, let us examine Wal-Mart, which racked up more than $16 billion in net income for 2015 and seems poised to better that this year.

The Walton family, heirs to founder Sam Walton, owns about half of Wal-Mart’s stock and receive a corresponding share of the billions of dollars in dividends the company pays yearly. It also spends billions more buying back stock annually, an indirect help to the Waltons. This is a company notorious for dodging taxes while paying its employees so little they require government assistance, and is the recipient of vast amounts of government handouts.

The Waltons make tens of thousands times what their ill-paid employees earn. They certainly don’t work tens of thousands harder — or even work at all, as the billions roll in just for being born into the right family. Wan-Mart is far from alone, but does provide an exemplary example of class warfare. An estimated $1 trillion a year goes to corporate profits that once went to wages, according to a PBS Newshour report.

The harder you work, the more the boss, and financiers, make. What sort of system is this?

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The Deutsche Bank Downfall: How a Pillar of German Banking Lost Its Way, on Spiegel Online International, by Ullrich Fichtner, Hauke Goos and Martin Hesse, Oct 28, 2016
(Photo Gallery): for most of its 146 years, Deutsche Bank was the embodiment of German values: reliable and safe. Now, the once-proud institution is facing the abyss. SPIEGEL tells the story of how Deutsche’s 1990s rush to join the world banking elite paved the way for its own downfall;

Excavating America’s Forgotten History of Political Repression, on Dissident Voice, by Kara Dellacioppa, Oct 28, 2016: a review of Brad Schreiber’s Revolution’s End;

Selected Articles: Inside the Invisible Government – War, Propaganda, Clinton and Trump, on Global, Oct 28, 2016;

Michael Moore Perfectly Explains Why Trump Will Win, 4.22 min, uploaded by Trump Man, Oct 25, 2016;

Life in Syria, as Recounted by a Syrian, on Global, by Mark Taliano, Okt 23, 2016: stories from Syrians are conspicuously absent from mainstream propaganda stories. I asked Ammar about life in Syria, and this is what he wrote: …;

Tons of Nevadan Gold, and Why Share Structure Matters, on Outsider Club, by Gerardo Del Real, Oct 24, 2016;

… and this:

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