Author Topic: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us  (Read 794 times)

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Online Stadler

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #35 on: February 20, 2019, 09:48:42 AM »
There is a bigger picture to that though. Amazon pays state and local taxes, via B&O and property taxes on their office spaces and warehouses.
Do they? They sure as hell wouldnb't have been in NYC. Nor do plenty of other corporate behemoths.

It depends.  All the rented space they do.  Certainly they're paying sales taxes and all those employees (in certain states) pay income taxes.  Look at it the other way; if it's not a big deal, why did GE leaving CT become almost the singular issue in the recent governor's race?   If it's not a big deal, why are the car manufacturers almost universally vilified for leaving Detroit?  Why do entire townships sometimes seem as if they've closed up entirely when the "big corporation" moves it's dealings either somewhere else or overseas? 

It may not be 100%, or even 90%, but well over 50% of the problem here is perception - 'big bad corporation, earning obscene profits while good, honest hardworking American patriots have to prostitute out their daughters to put food on the table' - not reality. 

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It employees thousands of workers who pay property taxes on their homes, (or via their rental unit lease), and sales tax (at 10+% in WA) state and local purchases.
Correct. The trillion dollar entity doesn't pay taxes because the working poor do it for them. But take it a step further, and look at what all of that has done to the tax rates where you live.

Honest question: knowing what you know now, if you lived in Astoria or Long Island City, would you have wanted Amazon to move into your neighborhood?

I work out of the house, but I have an office space in the next town over.   It happens to be right down the road (literally) from a former manufacturing location of my company.  That "brownfield" was paved over to make way for a 1,500,000+ square foot warehouse facility ("fulfillment center" in the vernacular) for Amazon.  They ended up investing over $100 million in Connecticut.  Yes, they received some abatements, but not 100%.   They've put millions back into the Windsor, CT coffers.   I know my road has been nicely repaved and there is construction up and down the street as other businesses come into the area.   In this one case, I would answer your question "Hell to the yeah". 
« Last Edit: February 20, 2019, 09:55:00 AM by Stadler »

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #36 on: February 20, 2019, 09:57:32 AM »
This is just utterly ridiculous. Iím all for a company making $$$ and what not....but this is shameful.


https://finance.yahoo.com/news/amazon-taxes-zero-180337770.html

I don't know much about economics, so I'll just wait for Stadler to explain why this is actually a very good thing, or at the very least a perfectly reasonable thing.

Cool Chris just nailed it upside down and sideways.   They ARE paying, they ARE contributing, it's just not on that line item.   "Taxes" in that sense, are not a penalty, they are an incentivizer.  Do we want people to own their own homes?  Of course we do.  How do we know?  There are tens of thousands of dollars of tax incentives (even for modest middle class folk) who own.  Did we want people to sign up for Obamacare?  You betcha! How do we know? Because if yuo didn't, there was a significant tax burden imposed on you.  Do we want people to save and/or invest their money? Absolutely.  Don't need to type the rest.  Clean cars?  Renewable energy sources for your homes?   

It's the same here.   I know Ted Cruz likes to do his "index card" nonsense for taxes, but the reality is, people DO know full well what's in the tax code.   The way taht individuals and companies file (and pay) taxes is not a mistake, a lucky break or a "loophole".   Now, we can question the incentives, and ask that they be changed, but that's not the same as castigating Amazon for their growth strategy.  Their search for a new headquarters (or whatever it was) didn't make national news because it wasn't impactful, and there aren't 1,000 AO-C stories about Amazon pulling out of Brooklyn because it's merely gossip.  That community took a full shot to the face, economically, and will be feeling that for a while.  That economic impact (that some other community will get) is the upside of the optically bad (but economically desirable) Amazon tax position.
That community dodged a bullet. The people there wouldn't have benefited one bit. People 10 miles away would have done alright, but the locals would have wound up moving to someplace they could afford after Amazon "made everything better." Sort of like how all of us paid more taxes after the world's greatest tax cut.

I have a much less cynical view of this than you do.  But help me with that second sentence; are you implying that companies shouldn't invest in areas for fear of property values going UP?   

Online Chino

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #37 on: February 20, 2019, 09:59:23 AM »
There is a bigger picture to that though. Amazon pays state and local taxes, via B&O and property taxes on their office spaces and warehouses.
Do they? They sure as hell wouldnb't have been in NYC. Nor do plenty of other corporate behemoths.

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It employees thousands of workers who pay property taxes on their homes, (or via their rental unit lease), and sales tax (at 10+% in WA) state and local purchases.
Correct. The trillion dollar entity doesn't pay taxes because the working poor do it for them. But take it a step further, and look at what all of that has done to the tax rates where you live.

Honest question: knowing what you know now, if you lived in Astoria or Long Island City, would you have wanted Amazon to move into your neighborhood?

My sister lives in Astoria and her rent went up $500 per month on just the news that Amazon was moving in (received a letter from the Landlord saying what the new price would be 4 months from now when she renews her lease). Not sure if it'll go back down now that they've bailed.

Online El Barto

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #38 on: February 20, 2019, 10:07:14 AM »
There is a bigger picture to that though. Amazon pays state and local taxes, via B&O and property taxes on their office spaces and warehouses.
Do they? They sure as hell wouldnb't have been in NYC. Nor do plenty of other corporate behemoths.

It depends.  All the rented space they do.  Certainly they're paying sales taxes and all those employees (in certain states) pay income taxes.  Look at it the other way; if it's not a big deal, why did GE leaving CT become almost the singular issue in the recent governor's race?   If it's not a big deal, why are the car manufacturers almost universally vilified for leaving Detroit?  Why do entire townships sometimes seem as if they've closed up entirely when the "big corporation" moves it's dealings either somewhere else or overseas? 

It may not be 100%, or even 90%, but well over 50% of the problem here is perception - 'big bad corporation, earning obscene profits while good, honest hardworking American patriots have to prostitute out their daughters to put food on the table' - not reality. 

How does Amazon pay sales taxes? Its employees do on anything they buy. Its customers do on anything they buy. On the products it buys they're purchased for resale and thus tax exempt. At least that's how sales tax works down here. It would pay tax for all the toilet paper and post-its used in its offices, but that would be happening regardless.

And there are two points to your perception problem. One is that I don't hold it against them. If automakers want to get out of scumridden Detroit who could blame them. At the same time at a political level it does say something about your leadership if companies flee your state because of things you do. Mismanagement leading to a corporate exodus is an indicator. That doesn't mean that letting Amazon move into your neighborhood is a good thing, though.

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It employees thousands of workers who pay property taxes on their homes, (or via their rental unit lease), and sales tax (at 10+% in WA) state and local purchases.
Correct. The trillion dollar entity doesn't pay taxes because the working poor do it for them. But take it a step further, and look at what all of that has done to the tax rates where you live.

Honest question: knowing what you know now, if you lived in Astoria or Long Island City, would you have wanted Amazon to move into your neighborhood?

I work out of the house, but I have an office space in the next town over.   It happens to be right down the road (literally) from a former manufacturing location of my company.  That "brownfield" was paved over to make way for a 1,500,000+ square foot warehouse facility ("fulfillment center" in the vernacular) for Amazon.  They ended up investing over $100 million in Connecticut.  Yes, they received some abatements, but not 100%.   They've put millions back into the Windsor, CT coffers.   I know my road has been nicely repaved and there is construction up and down the street as other businesses come into the area.   In this one case, I would answer your question "Hell to the yeah".
You're of a peculiar mindset, though. You're of the opinion that if progress leaves you unable to live in your home you move and it's as simple as that. You also have the means to do so. Most people don't possess both of those qualities. I'm not sure how you accept the loss of identity that comes along with, though.

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I have a much less cynical view of this than you do.  But help me with that second sentence; are you implying that companies shouldn't invest in areas for fear of property values going UP? 

As a rule I don't think companies "invest in neighborhoods" to an extent that really matters. The people in Astoria, like Chino's sister, wouldn't have benefited from Amazon's arrival. The property values will go up. The people who could afford to live there will move out and be replaced by people who can. Great for the city. Sucks for the people who now have to move to the slums. 

You ever spend any time in that part of Queens? That's where I stay when I'm in NYC, and it really saddened me when the announcement was made. It would have been the end of it. It saddens me just the same to hear that the damage has probably already been done, as evidenced by Chino's post.
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Online Chino

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #39 on: February 20, 2019, 10:09:25 AM »

I work out of the house, but I have an office space in the next town over.   It happens to be right down the road (literally) from a former manufacturing location of my company.  That "brownfield" was paved over to make way for a 1,500,000+ square foot warehouse facility ("fulfillment center" in the vernacular) for Amazon.  They ended up investing over $100 million in Connecticut.  Yes, they received some abatements, but not 100%.   They've put millions back into the Windsor, CT coffers.   I know my road has been nicely repaved and there is construction up and down the street as other businesses come into the area.   In this one case, I would answer your question "Hell to the yeah".

Do you think your response would vary depending on where you live though? Being a CT resident myself, I was hoping that through some kind of cosmic intervention Amazon would have settled on coming here. I would have ever been cool with them getting 10-15 years of tax free business for doing so. It's not like NYC needs the jobs or some kind of lifeline. I get that Amazon is a business, but I think a lot of people, myself included, were hoping that they'd use their business prestige to do some good and help an area of this country that could really use it. Them moving to NYC would just create more traffic and increase rental costs all over the area (think silicon valley). I think a lot of people saw them presented with an opportunity to do something good for a piece of this country, and instead they whored themselves out to the lowest (highest?) bidder.   

I get that there's the labor pool argument, but like you said, they pumped over 100,000,000 dollars into the CT economy. Wherever they ended up, people would have followed, especially if they went to a state like North Carolina while still offering 50,000, well paying, middle class jobs.   

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #40 on: February 20, 2019, 10:42:06 AM »
How does Amazon pay sales taxes? Its employees do on anything they buy. Its customers do on anything they buy. On the products it buys they're purchased for resale and thus tax exempt. At least that's how sales tax works down here. It would pay tax for all the toilet paper and post-its used in its offices, but that would be happening regardless.

All of those things.  I don't really follow that "it would happen anyway".  We are in a state - last I checked, one of only three - that is a net negative in population growth.  People are flocking out of Connecticut.  It's not at all a given that those Amazon employees would be paying anything but for Amazon, and certainly not any other business.   

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And there are two points to your perception problem. One is that I don't hold it against them. If automakers want to get out of scumridden Detroit who could blame them. At the same time at a political level it does say something about your leadership if companies flee your state because of things you do. Mismanagement leading to a corporate exodus is an indicator. That doesn't mean that letting Amazon move into your neighborhood is a good thing, though.

I know all about corporate exodus, Mary Jane.   :)   GE - the best company I ever worked for, by FAR, and longtime resident of Fairfield, CT - up and left a couple years ago, and it was both a huge blow to the community (very affluent, and yet still feeling the burn) and a sign of our lack of leadership.   But while you're right, it doesn't automatically make Amazon "a good thing" it goes a long way to saying that SOMETHING coming in is a good thing.   

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You're of a peculiar mindset, though. You're of the opinion that if progress leaves you unable to live in your home you move and it's as simple as that. You also have the means to do so. Most people don't possess both of those qualities. I'm not sure how you accept the loss of identity that comes along with, though.

Well, you're touching on good points here.  I do, now, have the means, but I grew up in a farm town.   My cousin had a huge dairy farm next town over.  My grandparents had chickens up until I was a kid (we did too).  My home growing up was part of a 60's tract home development.  Now? It's a bedroom community for New York City.   I probably can't afford my house right now.  I don't understand how MY PERSONAL well-being trumps the well-being of society as a whole, though.   If it's that price, SOMEONE can afford it, and I have to be honest (but respectful): I don't understand that argument that says I SHOULD be able to.   

The identity thing is different, though.  While I also maintain that it's not up to me, I do respect that argument.  But that's why we have planning and zoning departments.   I'd love to live on an island with a 6,000 sq.ft. cabana, shuttling to the mainland in my 60 foot convertible, but I can't.  Does that mean that NO ONE should?   Does that mean that the island that would host that must now limit themselves to the 750 sq.ft. shacks that I can afford?   

I don't know if it was dumb luck or something more calculated, but that town I mentioned above - Windsor - has done it right.   They have proximity to the Bradley Airport, and sections of that town are basically dedicated to the "warehouse" footprint (there are several areas, actually) and some are dedicated to residential.  I do lament the (radical) changing of some communities, but I don't know how you rule that out entirely.   Of course it saddens me - my tract house was on a man-made lake, and the community had an association that allowed us to swim in it.  That lake holds about 95% of my memories pre age 15 or so.  I had a little area, a grassy knoll, that I could go hide and lay there in the sun, at the edge of the water, reading books and listening to music (to this day, The Analog Kid reminds me of that place) and it's no longer there. Bulldozed.  I'm infinitely sad about that, but not sure what I can do about it. 

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As a rule I don't think companies "invest in neighborhoods" to an extent that really matters. The people in Astoria, like Chino's sister, wouldn't have benefited from Amazon's arrival. The property values will go up. The people who could afford to live there will move out and be replaced by people who can. Great for the city. Sucks for the people who now have to move to the slums. 

You ever spend any time in that part of Queens? That's where I stay when I'm in NYC, and it really saddened me when the announcement was made. It would have been the end of it. It saddens me just the same to hear that the damage has probably already been done, as evidenced by Chino's post.

My dad was born in Queens and lived his first couple years on Steinway St.  The duplex is still there, in the shadow of LaGuardia Airport.   It's not the same, but it is; it's still a vibrant immigrant community, just different immigrants.   I too share your sadness.  Very much so, and I don't discount it at all.   But where's the balance?  And don't we as participants bear some responsibility for that balance?   

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #41 on: February 20, 2019, 10:43:41 AM »

I work out of the house, but I have an office space in the next town over.   It happens to be right down the road (literally) from a former manufacturing location of my company.  That "brownfield" was paved over to make way for a 1,500,000+ square foot warehouse facility ("fulfillment center" in the vernacular) for Amazon.  They ended up investing over $100 million in Connecticut.  Yes, they received some abatements, but not 100%.   They've put millions back into the Windsor, CT coffers.   I know my road has been nicely repaved and there is construction up and down the street as other businesses come into the area.   In this one case, I would answer your question "Hell to the yeah".

Do you think your response would vary depending on where you live though? Being a CT resident myself, I was hoping that through some kind of cosmic intervention Amazon would have settled on coming here. I would have ever been cool with them getting 10-15 years of tax free business for doing so. It's not like NYC needs the jobs or some kind of lifeline. I get that Amazon is a business, but I think a lot of people, myself included, were hoping that they'd use their business prestige to do some good and help an area of this country that could really use it. Them moving to NYC would just create more traffic and increase rental costs all over the area (think silicon valley). I think a lot of people saw them presented with an opportunity to do something good for a piece of this country, and instead they whored themselves out to the lowest (highest?) bidder.   

I get that there's the labor pool argument, but like you said, they pumped over 100,000,000 dollars into the CT economy. Wherever they ended up, people would have followed, especially if they went to a state like North Carolina while still offering 50,000, well paying, middle class jobs.
I think a big part of the problem is that they don't actually bring 50,000 well paying jobs with them. They bring 50,000 well paid employees from all over the place. How many Astoria/LIC residents would have gotten jobs there? Now, how many would have lost jobs when the businesses they used to work for sell out and head off to greener pastures? Does the Armenian family that runs a pastry and lunch spot keep their place there when the lease triples and their rent does same? "But they'll sell 50% more $3 cups of coffee!"
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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #42 on: February 20, 2019, 10:47:20 AM »

I work out of the house, but I have an office space in the next town over.   It happens to be right down the road (literally) from a former manufacturing location of my company.  That "brownfield" was paved over to make way for a 1,500,000+ square foot warehouse facility ("fulfillment center" in the vernacular) for Amazon.  They ended up investing over $100 million in Connecticut.  Yes, they received some abatements, but not 100%.   They've put millions back into the Windsor, CT coffers.   I know my road has been nicely repaved and there is construction up and down the street as other businesses come into the area.   In this one case, I would answer your question "Hell to the yeah".

Do you think your response would vary depending on where you live though? Being a CT resident myself, I was hoping that through some kind of cosmic intervention Amazon would have settled on coming here. I would have ever been cool with them getting 10-15 years of tax free business for doing so. It's not like NYC needs the jobs or some kind of lifeline. I get that Amazon is a business, but I think a lot of people, myself included, were hoping that they'd use their business prestige to do some good and help an area of this country that could really use it. Them moving to NYC would just create more traffic and increase rental costs all over the area (think silicon valley). I think a lot of people saw them presented with an opportunity to do something good for a piece of this country, and instead they whored themselves out to the lowest (highest?) bidder.   

I get that there's the labor pool argument, but like you said, they pumped over 100,000,000 dollars into the CT economy. Wherever they ended up, people would have followed, especially if they went to a state like North Carolina while still offering 50,000, well paying, middle class jobs.

Honest question, so's I understand.  Are you saying that it's NEW YORK that was bad, not Amazon?  Because I can buy into that argument.   Maybe there ARE more deserving communities.   

I'm just pushing back on the argument that no one but the company themselves and the rich benefit and everyone else just gets various versions of "fucked".   (For example, why aren't we considering that some of the owners - whose property values are going up - aren't middle class people that are now profiting from that?  I know I'm in that group that is curious if the expansion of casinos up north helps property values, because I'd sure benefit from that!)

Online El Barto

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #43 on: February 20, 2019, 10:48:50 AM »

Well, you're touching on good points here.  I do, now, have the means, but I grew up in a farm town.   My cousin had a huge dairy farm next town over.  My grandparents had chickens up until I was a kid (we did too).  My home growing up was part of a 60's tract home development.  Now? It's a bedroom community for New York City.   I probably can't afford my house right now. I don't understand how MY PERSONAL well-being trumps the well-being of society as a whole, though.   If it's that price, SOMEONE can afford it, and I have to be honest (but respectful): I don't understand that argument that says I SHOULD be able to.   
Whose society, though? Your society got ripped up and strewn asunder. A new one came in that is better off. Why does your society, the US of A, trump the rights of the global society? Is there some arbitrary line of proximity?
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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #44 on: February 20, 2019, 10:52:54 AM »

Well, you're touching on good points here.  I do, now, have the means, but I grew up in a farm town.   My cousin had a huge dairy farm next town over.  My grandparents had chickens up until I was a kid (we did too).  My home growing up was part of a 60's tract home development.  Now? It's a bedroom community for New York City.   I probably can't afford my house right now. I don't understand how MY PERSONAL well-being trumps the well-being of society as a whole, though.   If it's that price, SOMEONE can afford it, and I have to be honest (but respectful): I don't understand that argument that says I SHOULD be able to.   
Whose society, though? Your society got ripped up and strewn asunder. A new one came in that is better off. Why does your society, the US of A, trump the rights of the global society? Is there some arbitrary line of proximity?

Are you talking Native Americans?  I'm not getting that existential.  I just mean the here and now.   At this moment in time, this very second, some percentage of the population is benefiting, some percentage is standing pat, and some percentage is getting the shaft.   I think when the groups get too out of proportion, there's a problem, but we can't take a snapshot, find ONE PERSON that is getting the shaft, and then re-jigger the entire enterprise to guarantee, at any cost, that doesn't happen. 

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #45 on: February 20, 2019, 10:55:16 AM »

I work out of the house, but I have an office space in the next town over.   It happens to be right down the road (literally) from a former manufacturing location of my company.  That "brownfield" was paved over to make way for a 1,500,000+ square foot warehouse facility ("fulfillment center" in the vernacular) for Amazon.  They ended up investing over $100 million in Connecticut.  Yes, they received some abatements, but not 100%.   They've put millions back into the Windsor, CT coffers.   I know my road has been nicely repaved and there is construction up and down the street as other businesses come into the area.   In this one case, I would answer your question "Hell to the yeah".

Do you think your response would vary depending on where you live though? Being a CT resident myself, I was hoping that through some kind of cosmic intervention Amazon would have settled on coming here. I would have ever been cool with them getting 10-15 years of tax free business for doing so. It's not like NYC needs the jobs or some kind of lifeline. I get that Amazon is a business, but I think a lot of people, myself included, were hoping that they'd use their business prestige to do some good and help an area of this country that could really use it. Them moving to NYC would just create more traffic and increase rental costs all over the area (think silicon valley). I think a lot of people saw them presented with an opportunity to do something good for a piece of this country, and instead they whored themselves out to the lowest (highest?) bidder.   

I get that there's the labor pool argument, but like you said, they pumped over 100,000,000 dollars into the CT economy. Wherever they ended up, people would have followed, especially if they went to a state like North Carolina while still offering 50,000, well paying, middle class jobs.

Honest question, so's I understand.  Are you saying that it's NEW YORK that was bad, not Amazon?  Because I can buy into that argument.   Maybe there ARE more deserving communities.   

Neither, really. Though I think some of the politicians in NYC could have done a better job conveying the message they were trying to get across (not implying that I agree with what they were saying), and I think Amazon could have gotten some much better PR had they chosen a location that wasn't already the richest city in the country to set up shop.

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #46 on: February 20, 2019, 10:59:40 AM »

Well, you're touching on good points here.  I do, now, have the means, but I grew up in a farm town.   My cousin had a huge dairy farm next town over.  My grandparents had chickens up until I was a kid (we did too).  My home growing up was part of a 60's tract home development.  Now? It's a bedroom community for New York City.   I probably can't afford my house right now. I don't understand how MY PERSONAL well-being trumps the well-being of society as a whole, though.   If it's that price, SOMEONE can afford it, and I have to be honest (but respectful): I don't understand that argument that says I SHOULD be able to.   
Whose society, though? Your society got ripped up and strewn asunder. A new one came in that is better off. Why does your society, the US of A, trump the rights of the global society? Is there some arbitrary line of proximity?

Are you talking Native Americans?  I'm not getting that existential.  I just mean the here and now.   At this moment in time, this very second, some percentage of the population is benefiting, some percentage is standing pat, and some percentage is getting the shaft.   I think when the groups get too out of proportion, there's a problem, but we can't take a snapshot, find ONE PERSON that is getting the shaft, and then re-jigger the entire enterprise to guarantee, at any cost, that doesn't happen.
The society of people living in the tract housing you started off with. Are they still there? And who's to decide who gets the shaft, the bonus, or jack shit? The people getting the bonus?
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Offline Cool Chris

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #47 on: February 20, 2019, 10:59:41 AM »
There is a bigger picture to that though. Amazon pays state and local taxes, via B&O and property taxes on their office spaces and warehouses.
Do they? They sure as hell wouldnb't have been in NYC. Nor do plenty of other corporate behemoths.

They do in WA, different states have different tax codes and structures of course.

Honest question: knowing what you know now, if you lived in Astoria or Long Island City, would you have wanted Amazon to move into your neighborhood?

Great question. Not to deflect but it all depends on the characteristics of the region. I can't speak for those areas, but I would ask: What's the (un)employment rate? What's the road and transit infrastructure? What is the housing situation? Zoning laws? Ability and incentives to build new housing? Seattle has serious issues with transportation and ability to build new homes, for starters. Amazon didn't create those problems however. I do wonder what the impetus to choose this area was for them at the time. I honestly bet they regret it to some degree.

That community dodged a bullet. The people there wouldn't have benefited one bit. People 10 miles away would have done alright, but the locals would have wound up moving to someplace they could afford after Amazon "made everything better."

There is truth to this I won't deny, and I am conflicted. I am far enough away from Seattle to not feel the ripple effects, but close enough to see it. My home's assessed value has gone from $300k to about $500k since 2009. Could I buy the house I live in now? Maybe I couldn't. My taxes have gone up at a rate I cannot site without research. Local rents have skyrocketed, but due to many factors, not just Amazon's presence and success. Homelessness has spiked not due to Amazon, but because of poor civic leadership.

Speaking of local leadership: When the "Head Tax" (or Amazon Tax as Sawant labelled it) was proposed, the most vocal opponents were not big corproations. It was blue collar laborers, the ones who build and maintain the new office buildings. Those jobs are their lifeblood. Growth in this area has created mllions of man-hours for these laborers. That tax was dropped in a hurry once the local liberal politicians realized they could face unhappy labor unions come election time.
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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #48 on: February 20, 2019, 11:21:46 AM »

Well, you're touching on good points here.  I do, now, have the means, but I grew up in a farm town.   My cousin had a huge dairy farm next town over.  My grandparents had chickens up until I was a kid (we did too).  My home growing up was part of a 60's tract home development.  Now? It's a bedroom community for New York City.   I probably can't afford my house right now. I don't understand how MY PERSONAL well-being trumps the well-being of society as a whole, though.   If it's that price, SOMEONE can afford it, and I have to be honest (but respectful): I don't understand that argument that says I SHOULD be able to.   
Whose society, though? Your society got ripped up and strewn asunder. A new one came in that is better off. Why does your society, the US of A, trump the rights of the global society? Is there some arbitrary line of proximity?

Are you talking Native Americans?  I'm not getting that existential.  I just mean the here and now.   At this moment in time, this very second, some percentage of the population is benefiting, some percentage is standing pat, and some percentage is getting the shaft.   I think when the groups get too out of proportion, there's a problem, but we can't take a snapshot, find ONE PERSON that is getting the shaft, and then re-jigger the entire enterprise to guarantee, at any cost, that doesn't happen.
The society of people living in the tract housing you started off with. Are they still there? And who's to decide who gets the shaft, the bonus, or jack shit? The people getting the bonus?

Largely, no, though there are holdouts.  My childhood friend's parents still live in the same house up the street.  My house has changed owners I think three times.  The ones that are still there are my parents generation that decided to stay, and are either paid off on mortgages or are living off the cornucopia that is their equity in their house.   

No one "decides", per se.  It's not a calculated, planned event, else, everyone would do it and we'd all be geographically mobile millionaires.   Anyone who was there in 1977 that tells you they knew that they'd be a (metaphorical) stop on the Metro-North rail line is lying to your face.   It's the inevitable march of progress.  It's the residential equivalent of the AT&T operator, the coal-tender engineer on the rail line, or any of 100 or 1,000 jobs/industries that have come and gone over the years.   

Maybe because I'm living it now, but I don't quite understand the "priced out of my neighborhood" idea.  I'm really starting to hate CT, because my money can be better used elsewhere, but the people that are moving are the people that don't have a pot to piss in, not the fat cats, and it's those people that are seeing the benefit.  My step-daughter literally has $100 to her name, and her boyfriend/husband has even less.  They loaded their shit in a van and left for North Carolina.   I don't see any of that as a bad thing, and neither do they.   It's not a hardship on the people, it's Connecticut's loss.   My other stepson, in the Army, is deployed to Virginia, and we get a text every two days "when you coming down here".   His dilemma?  None of what we're talking about, but rather how to get his girlfriend (read: his son) to break ties with her family and move down there with him. 

My point being, that all of this is a continuum.   For every rich guy that gets fatter, there's one that gets fucked.  For every poor person that takes it in the shorts again, there's one that hits the jack pot.   

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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #49 on: February 20, 2019, 11:51:09 AM »
My point being, that all of this is a continuum.   For every rich guy that gets fatter, there's one that gets fucked.  For every poor person that takes it in the shorts again, there's one that hits the jack pot.

That is simply not true.  It is not one for one on either side.  One side has FAR more security, and one side gets fucked and/or takes it in the shorts FA more frequently.  Remember, this isn't a zero sum game.
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Re: The Wealthy and Powerful vs. The Rest of Us
« Reply #50 on: February 20, 2019, 11:56:56 AM »
And more often than not the shorts receiver has no control over the outcome, as opposed to the eventual winner that set it up.
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