S&P, the Fed, IKEA, etc.
This is going to be a quick series of links–it’s a beautiful day out and I want to enjoy the last couple of hours of daylight!
(1) Now that stock volatility has returned, it’s time to start monitoring the Brokers With Hands On Their Faces Blog. It’s hilarious. (Hm… the lead photo for today is a woman; only about 1% of the photos are of women, which is probably pretty representative of traders (which is who these people are, right, vs brokers?).)
(2) Dean Baker on the S&P downgrade: Here. The short version: “Standard & Poor’s downgrade reveals its own problems, not the government’s.”
(3) Bob Pollin on the Fed, at the Real News Network: More Cheap Fed Money Won’t Create Jobs (it’ll just keep enriching the banks).
(4) Sweet deals from JPMorgan Chase: The bank is giving huge bonuses to homeowners facing foreclosure if they sell short–but it seems to be doing so in cases where it doesn’t have its paperwork in order, according to this interesting article from Barrons.. I say to those homeowners: sit tight! Maybe you can just stay.
(5) Union victory at IKEA in Virginia: Great piece by Josh Eidelson on Alternet; Josh has written another great piece for us on the Boeing strikes that are the background of the recent NLRB ruling. Josh drew the connection between the two in an email to me:
It’s interesting to see the Machinists confronting capital mobility from different angles – fighting against retaliatory transfer of production away from their plants in Puget Sound, while successfully organizing Ikea’s plant placed in Virginia (though as I note in my piece, the latter story is more complicated than simple outsourcing for low labor costs).
I’ll be posting Josh’s Boeing article to the D&S website next week. But why not buy the whole Annual Labor Issue on your local newsstand, or better yet, subscribe?
(6) More shallow economics coverage from the New York Times politics reporters: Check out this article‘s thumbnail sketch of the past thirty years–minus any sense of class conflict. Without talking about the pummeling of organized labor, the “employers’ offensive,” the rise of the right, increasing income and wealth inequality, and the whole class history of the United States over the past 30 years, what you might think (and this Times reporter thinks) that “the voters” sadly want and expect government services and an economy that politicians simply can’t deliver. Oh wait–that’s just what the bosses, the super-rich, and the right wing want you to believe! Thanks, Times.
That’s all for now–enough of our windowless office.