DISCO PANTS AND HAIRCUTS
Robotics Animated GIF - Giphy
But commodities like healthcare and the Internet are different. They’re absolute necessities bordering on human rights, for which there is no substitute. They’re enormous and impossible for an underdog to produce at a lower cost. And they’re easy for ruthless corporations to monopolize and vertically integrate for exploitative, rent-seeking purposes absent government intervention. Allowing a “free market” in such commodities isn’t free at all. It’s insane. It’s guaranteed to produce monopolies, high prices and terrible service. Which is exactly what we have in American healthcare and American internet: the world’s freest, and therefore worst and most expensive, markets in essential services.Hullabaloo (via azspot)
" Detroit’s emergency manager has filed a plan to restructure the city’s debts in the wake of the largest municipal bankruptcy in US history. The plan, awaiting approval from a bankruptcy judge, includes cuts to pensions and creditors to drive down the $18bn (£10.8bn) debt. Funds would also be devoted to demolishing abandoned city properties. The city initially filed for bankruptcy protection in July 2013. ‘Best path forward’ "We must move swiftly to emerge from bankruptcy so that the financial distress harming the city can end," state-appointed manager Kevyn Orr said in a statement. "We maintain that the plan provides the best path forward for all parties to resolve their respective issues and for Detroit to become once again a city in which people want to invest, live and work," he added. Specifics of the debt relief plan include: • Creditors, including bond insurers, will receive an estimated 20% of their claims • Police and firefighter retirees will receive at least 90% of their pensions, and cost of living allowances will be eliminated • The Detroit Institute of Arts will keep its city-owned art collection, with assistance from foundations and private donors • $1.5bn will be allocated over 10 years to city infrastructure and technology upgrades The plan is reportedly likely to face obstacles moving forward, including court appeals should it be approved in bankruptcy court. An estimated $12bn of the city’s $18bn debt is said to be unsecured, with no taxes or other revenue streams to pay it down. Ongoing negotiations with stakeholders are also reportedly expected to result in changes to the plan, Mr Orr told US media. Detroit has seen a dramatic decline in economic activity and population, as the big carmakers - once the city’s main source of employment - shifted production to cheaper locations in the US and overseas. The city is now home to about 700,000 residents, down from the peak of 1.8 million in 1950. "
detroit’s extant debt is 18 billion
facebook just bought whatsapp for 19 billion
why doesn’t somebody just buy off detroit’s debt and give the people a pass, and maybe not tear half the city down when there are still families being thrown out on the street bc the recession ruined their lives
i mean i know why
but what kind of nonsense world do we live in where a social network can pay nineteen billion dollars to buy an iphone app, but none of the romney ass motherfuckers who caused this mess (or eighteen of them together) can spare one billion //less// than that to bail out //an entire fucking city//
no instead let’s burn the place down and have a fire sale, why pay eighteen billion to save 700k people when those people don’t even have any money, we can get it cheaper if we wait until they’re all homeless and out of the way
meanwhile in 1950 when detroit was booming, the top tax rate was like seventy percent, oops, so much for the job creators myth
Remember when Detroit as depicted in Robocop ‘87 looked like a horrible dystopia? And not, you know, the news?
If you’re lucky enough to have a job, you probably work extremely hard. Thanks to the power of technology and successive waves of downsizing, people today are doing the work that it took two or three people to perform decades ago. Employees put in frequent 10-hour days to meet their bosses’ demands, and often work remotely from home on nights and weekends. With productivity continually climbing, corporate profits have soared to all-time highs; the stock market gained more than $6 trillion in value in 2013. Yet Americans’ real disposable income went up a mere 0.7 percent the same year. What happened to the workers’ raises? Don’t ask. Remember: You’re lucky just to have a job.William Falk, in The real cause of income inequality (via theweekmagazine)