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Tag Archives: The destruction of the middle class

DoJ Bankruptcy Trustee Lambastes Provisions to Protect Sacklers in Purdue Bankruptcy Exit Plan as “Illegal”

By Jerri-Lynn Scofield, who has worked as a securities lawyer and a derivatives trader. She is currently writing a book about textile artisans. Last week, when I last wrote about the Purdue bankruptcy exit plan, it looked like the Sackler family would get to keep most of their fortune, and receive immunity from third-party lawsuits for claims related to the role they played in the opioids epidemic. Fifteen states had signalled, including previous stalwarts of state opioids litigation...

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Biden Targets Non-Compete Agreements, Which Restrict the Job Opportunities of Millions of Low-Wage Workers

Yves here. While Biden noticing that non-compete agreements are an economy-constraining employer abuse is a step forward, it’s not clear that his Administration intends to do anything more than hand wave, even though the practice has become ludicrously common. Recall that the excuse for non-compete clauses is that an employee might walk off with valuable know-how that helps someone else in their industry. But now these provisions have become common even for low level workers whose jobs are so...

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Bureau of Labor Statistics (Non) Reporting Tallies 8 Strikes in 2020 Versus Payday Report’s >1200

Yves here. It’s gratifying to see Mike Elk of Payday Report get some long overdue recognition. For those of you who have somehow managed not to hear of Payday Report despite this site linking to it regularly, Elk covers an important but not surprisingly neglected beat. Payday Report’s mission is “Covering labor in news deserts.” Elk has kept at his project despite running what can only be described as an extreme shoestring operation. Sadly Payday report is in constant fundraising mode due to...

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Michael Hudson Discusses Financialization, Rentierism, and Other Favorite Topics with Jessi Ora of Swedish Positiva Pengar Group

Yves here. Michael Hudson called this interview a summary of his overall economic philosophy, so I hope you will enjoy it. Needless to say, it also covers a lot of ground. One point where I hate to quibble is his call for 100% reserve backed banks. This is a very old idea, called narrow banking, advocated during the Great Depression by Yale economist Irving Fisher, infamous for declaring stocks at a permanently high plateau right before for 1929 crash. Fisher redeemed himself by identifying...

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An Independence Day Reflection: How the Rich Plan to Rule a Burning World

Yves here. It isn’t a far reach to argue that the creation over the last 20 or so years of a stronger surveillance and control apparatus is part of a long-term plan, above all to protect the powerful and rich. Remember, for instance, that in the early 2000s, Pentagon strategists were warning of coming destabilizing mass migrations, triggered by climate change. However, having lived in NYC during Hurricane Sandy, I need to correct part of his post. First, the dark zone in Manhattan was roughly...

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Yanis Varoufakis: Techno-Feudalism Is Taking Over

Yves here. Yanis Varoufakis puts a name, techno-feudalism, on the widespread shifts in economic power relationships. Varoufakis speculates as to whether this is a move to a new system or a reversion to an older tooth and claw version of capitalism. By Yanis Varoufakis. Originally published at Project Syndicate and his website This is how capitalism ends: not with a revolutionary bang, but with an evolutionary whimper. Just as it displaced feudalism gradually, surreptitiously, until one day...

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J & J Agrees to Pay New York $230 Million to Settle Opioids Lawsuit; Global Settlement Soon?

By Jerri-Lynn Scofield, who has worked as a securities lawyer and a derivatives trader. She is currently writing a book about textile artisans. New York State Attorney General (AG) Letitia James yesterday announced a $230 million settlement agreement with Johnson & Johnson (J & J) of opioids claims, shortly before a trial was scheduled to begin on Tuesday in Long Island. From the press release issued by James Today’s agreement also makes enforceable a bar stopping J&J and all of...

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James Galbraith: China and Supply Chains – The White House Review’s Focus on US Depenedence

Yves here. Jamie Galbraith provided a detailed and insightful recap of a new White House report, Building Resilient Supply Chains, Revitalizing American Manufacturing and Fostering Broad-based Growth. Even though it focuses on only four important sectors, the study belies its cheery title. It might be more accurately called Revitalizing American Manufacturing: Why We Can’t Get There from Here. Oh, and of course, the position of China is a big reason, but the story is more complicated than you...

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Unions Demand Pelosi and Schumer Include Lower Medicare Age, Drug Pricing Reform in Infrastructure Plan

By Brett Wilkins, staff writer for Common Dreams. Originally published at Common Dreams Echoing earlier demands from progressive groups and lawmakers, over 100 labor unions and their allies on Wednesday called on the Biden administration and Democratic congressional leaders to include expanded Medicare eligibility and prescription drug pricing reform in the $1.8 trillion American Families Plan, part of President Joe Biden’s three-part Build Back Better economic and infrastructure proposal. In...

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Biden Taps Lina Khan to Chair the FTC

By Jerri-Lynn Scofield, who has worked as a securities lawyer and a derivatives trader. She is currently writing a book about textile artisans. Yesterday President Joe Biden tapped antitrust expert Lina Khan to chair the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), hours after the Senate voted 69-28 to confirm her nomination as an FTC commissioner. Khan, a Columbia University law professor, is a noted Big Tech critic. While still a student at Yale Law School, she penned an important article for the Yale...

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