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Sun Aug 9, 2020, 02:15 PM

Billionaires Profit Off Pandemic Fine, But GOP Won't Pay $600 A Wk For Millions To Survive Virus. RR

Last edited Sun Aug 9, 2020, 05:40 PM - Edit history (3)

-'Trump has no problem letting billionaires profit off the pandemic.' The president thinks that as long as they buoy the stock market, they’re helping the US economy- and that’s pure rubbish. Opinion, Robert Reich, The Guardian, Aug. 9, 2020. -Excerpts, Ed.:

Since the start of the pandemic, American billionaires have been cleaning up. As more than 50 million Americans filed for unemployment insurance, billionaires became $637bn richer. Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg’s wealth has ballooned 59%. Amazon’s Jeff Bezos’s, 39%. Walmart’s Walton family has added $25bn. Big drug company CEOs & their major investors are doing nicely, too. Since the start of the pandemic, Big Pharma has raised prices on over 250 prescription drugs, 61 of which are being used to treat Covid-19. Apologists say this is the “free market” responding to supply & demand – the barons of Big Tech & Big Pharma merely providing what consumers desperately need during the pandemic. The market also operates under laws that ban profiteering, price gouging, & monopolizing, & that tax excess profits in wartime. Where did they go?

The Trump administration hasn’t enforced them. He is also ignoring laws that ban trades on insider information. The WH is distributing billions in subsidies & loans to select corporations – enabling CEOs & boards to load up on stocks & stock options just before deals are announced, then rake in fat profits after stock prices surge. At least 11 co. insiders have sold shares worth over $1bn after such deals.. The most blatant involves Kodak, the venerable camera & film-maker. Trump announced a $765m deal with them to bring drug production back to the U.S., calling it “one of the most important deals in the history of the US pharmaceutical industries,” except that Kodak isn’t even a pharma company. Kodak shares shot up more than 2,757%. The board’s stock options were then worth about $4m, the CEO’s, about $50m.

Is this sort of insider trading against the law? You bet. The Securities & Exchange Commission is looking into the deal, now temporarily on hold. But the SEC’s co-director of enforcement, Steven Peikin, who had been investigating several of the deals involving the White House & corporate insiders – including Kodak – resigned last week, without explanation. Another in the lengthening list of independent regulators & inspectors general forced out by Trump?

This much is clear: Trump & his Republican enablers won’t provide $600 per week to tens of millions of Americans who need the money to survive the pandemic, because Trump & the GOP believe the money undermines incentives to work. Yet Trump has no problem letting billionaires illegally profit off the pandemic. He thinks that as long as they buoy the stock market, they’re helping the American economy. That’s pure rubbish. The stock market is not America. The richest 1% of Americans own half the value of all shares of stock held by American households. The richest 10% owns 92%.
For years now, stock prices have risen largely because profits have been siphoned from wages of ordinary workers.

In the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, stock prices are almost back to where they were before the pandemic began. Big corporations & major investors are doing fine. Billionaires are doing better than ever. But most Americans are sinking fast. This isn’t just unfair. Much of it is illegal.

'Finance 202: Some Billionaires Are Profiting Off Pandemic While Low Income Americans Bear The Brunt,' WaPo, 5/22/20

'Profiting From A Pandemic Is An Old Trick,' The Globe & Mail, Canada, 2020

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Reply Billionaires Profit Off Pandemic Fine, But GOP Won't Pay $600 A Wk For Millions To Survive Virus. RR (Original post)
appalachiablue Aug 9 OP
SheltieLover Aug 9 #1
demosincebirth Aug 9 #2

Response to appalachiablue (Original post)

Sun Aug 9, 2020, 02:16 PM

1. Of course!

It's what repukes do. They have never been the friend of the working class people. 🤬

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Response to appalachiablue (Original post)

Sun Aug 9, 2020, 04:01 PM

2. What's new? Republicans life 🩸 blood

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