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How BlackRock is on Track to Infiltrate a Biden Administration

AlterNet CounterPunch See article on original site The Democratic base, still scarred from the 2016 election, is frantic not to count its chickens before they hatch. But Wall Street and corporate America have no such qualms. As Joe Biden leads in national polls and swing states, the most powerful firms in the country are seeking assurances that his administration won’t crack down on their crimes. For many, that means tapping the Obama-era alumni and other well-connected Democrats whom...

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The Rise in Material Hardship Among Working-Class Whites and How It Could Impact the 2020 Election

Missed or late rent or mortgage payments with little confidence of being able to catch-up are hallmarks of what economists call “housing insecurity.” Black and Hispanic people are much more likely to be housing insecure than white people and have seen larger increases in housing insecurity during the pandemic. At the same time, there is considerable “hardship inequality” among white people. Hardship inequality is structured by education, income, and other factors. While housing insecurity has...

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PREVIEW: What to Look for in the Third Quarter GDP Report

While we are virtually certain to see record growth for GDP in the third quarter, without a new stimulus package a drop is likely in the fourth quarter.   We are virtually certain to see a record growth figure for GDP in the third quarter, likely close to 35 percent at an annual rate. The sharp growth is a bounce back from a record plunge in the second quarter, which followed a sharp drop in the first quarter, when the shutdown measures first started to go into effect. While this sort of...

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Washington Post Reports on How Top Execs at Bankrupt Companies Get Large Bonuses

The Post had a nice piece reported on how the top executives of major companies that went into bankruptcy were able to get large bonuses. As the piece points out, the bonuses are not tied to performance outcomes, like getting the companies out of bankruptcy in a specific time frame. Of course, ordinary workers at these companies are not so lucky, with many being laid off with little or nothing by way of severance pay. While the piece does not make this point explicitly, these sorts of payouts...

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Yet Another Diatribe on Patent Monopolies and How They Are Not Talked About in Polite Company

I had a short vacation last week, so my comments are both late and short. I will yet again take a shot at patent monopolies as a mechanism for financing the development of prescription drugs. This is because it is in the news, both with Purdue Pharma’s settlement in the opioid case and also with China’s moving forward in distributing a coronavirus vaccine.   Patents and Lying   Starting with the Purdue Pharma settlement, I did not see any mention anywhere of the fact that...

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Will The Fed Step In Where Congress Won’t To Help Struggling Americans? Dean Baker Joins

Follow on Twitch: https://www.twitch.tv/actdottv Julianna welcomes back recurring guest Dean Baker, Macroeconomist and co-founder of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, to discuss how now that it’s become clear our lawmakers are completely useless when it comes to helping ordinary Americans get through this crisis, there are some who are hoping we can get economic relief another way: through the Fed. Economists and activists are calling for the Fed to use a method called...

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Red State Governors Still Flunk Coronavirus Testing

A few weeks back I did a post noting that states governed by Republicans had the highest positive test rates, while the states with the lowest positive rates were mostly governed by Democrats. I argued that positive test rates are a good measure of how serious the governors are in trying to bring the pandemic under control. While they can take measures to limit the actual spread, such as longer and stronger lockdowns and mask requirements, many factors determining the spread are outside their...

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The Impact of the Pandemic on Superstar Cities

The Washington Post had a piece last week discussing the extent to which the pandemic, and more specifically increased opportunities for remote work, will affect thriving cities like New York and San Francisco. The main conclusion of the piece is that it won’t have much impact. This view is a bit peculiar. The argument in the article is essentially that these cities are very attractive places to live, and that will continue to be the case even if people have more opportunities to work...

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Mexico at the OAS General Assembly: Almagro undermined the OAS Charter and Damaged Bolivia’s Democracy

This week in Washington, D.C. the Organization of American States (OAS) held their 50th Regular Session of the General Assembly. In these meetings the General Assembly, the highest decision-making body of the OAS, is tasked with debating the organization’s course of action for the next year, as well as setting the standards of governance for the General Secretariat — the OAS’s central executive body, headed by Uruguayan diplomat Luis Almagro since 2015.  The session arrives on the heels...

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El FMI impone más recortes para Ecuador, aunque predica lo contrario

OpenDemocracy Ver artículo en el sitio original In English El FMI que se presenta en las reuniones anuales no es el mismo FMI que el que organiza los programas de préstamos, como se demuestra en el caso de Ecuador. En su discurso de apertura de las Reuniones Mundiales Anuales de este año, la Directora Gerente del FMI, Kristalina Georgieva, advirtió de los peligros de una recuperación desigual y de una creciente desigualdad, y habló de la necesidad de una recuperación inclusiva. De lo...

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