Category Archives: Harm through the market

Oligopolies and monopolies are very important ways of obtaining income without providing a productive service. They produce goods, a productive service. However, they receive additional income by raising prices, and their oligopoly/monopoly profits are distinguished by economists from normal profits and other expenses, which are the returns to productive activity. There are other harmful aspects to concentration and large firms as well, including restriction of innovation, using patents to defend market position, non-compete requirements for their employees, and substantial political power.  Also see Obtaining income from the government as both are often involved. Tax havens are another way in which taxes can be minimized and income from corruption can be laundered.

Oppression and Exploitation News March 12 – 18

Harm through the market 2020

Airlines are now asking for a giant bailout from the government due to the coronavirus pandemic shrinking air traffic.  This oped describes how American Airlines did not put money aside for a rainy day. Despite earning billions of dollars (for example, $7.6 billion in 2015) in large part gathered from higher fares and checked bag charges allowed by the oligopolistic structure of the airline industry, It spent $15 billion dollars on stock buybacks, accumulated a debt of $30 billion (nearly 5 times the company’s current market value),  and actually decreased its cash reserves.

Don’t feel sorry for the airlines Tim Wu New York Times March 16, 2020
Before providing them any assistance, we must demand that they change how they treat their customers and employees.

How working class life is killing Americans, in charts David Leonhardt and Stuart A. Thompson Washington Post March 4, 2020

Harming people – Keeping people oppressed 2020

Coronavirus outrage spurs China’s internet police to action Paul Mozur New York Times March 16, 2020
Online enforcers are dragging in hundreds for questioning as an assault on online speech continues. They are a sign of how Beijing has given censors a more punitive role.

Chinese tycoon who criticized Xi’s response to coronavirus has vanished Javier C. Hernández New York Times March 14, 2020
Ren Zhiqiang appears to be the latest government critic silenced by the Communist Party as it cracks down on dissent over the epidemic.

Discrimination 2020

How Delhi’s police turned against Muslims Jeffrey Gettleman, Sameer Yasir, Suhasini Raj and Hari Kumar New York Times March 12, 2020
More evidence has emerged that the Indian police took part in violence against Muslims or stood aside during fighting in the capital last month

Oppression and Exploitation News March 5 – 11

Harm through the market 2020

A $60 billion housing grab by Wall Street Francesca Mari New York Times March 4, 2020
Hundreds of thousands of single-family homes are now in the hands of giant companies — squeezing renters for revenue and putting the American dream even further out of reach.

Crime 2020

Boycotting avocados won’t hurt cartels Ioan Grillo New York Times March 2, 2020

Oppression and Exploitation News February 13 – 19

Struggle for control – staying in power 2020

Trump seeks to bend the executive branch as part of impeachment vendetta Philip Rucker, Robert Costa and Josh Dawsey Washington Post February 12, 2020

Harm through the market 2020

Global financial giants swear off funding an especially dirty fuel Christopher Flavelle New York Times February 12, 2020

T-Mobile and Sprint are set to merge as the big get bigger Edmund Lee New York Times February 11, 2020

Harm through the market 2020

Trump calls new fuel economy rule a boon. Some experts see steep costs. Coral Davenport New York Times March 31, 2020

Airlines are now asking for a giant bailout from the government due to the coronavirus pandemic shrinking air traffic.  This oped describes how American Airlines did not put money aside for a rainy day. Despite earning billions of dollars (for example, $7.6 billion in 2015) in large part gathered from higher fares and checked bag charges allowed by the oligopolistic structure of the airline industry, It spent $15 billion dollars on stock buybacks, accumulated a debt of $30 billion (nearly 5 times the company’s current market value),  and actually decreased its cash reserves.

Don’t feel sorry for the airlines Tim Wu New York Times March 16, 2020
Before providing them any assistance, we must demand that they change how they treat their customers and employees.

Deaths of Despair and the Future of Capitalism Anne Case and Angus Deaton Credit: Princeton University Press

How working class life is killing Americans, in charts David Leonhardt and Stuart A. Thompson Washington Post March 4, 2020

A $60 billion housing grab by Wall Street Francesca Mari New York Times March 4, 2020
Hundreds of thousands of single-family homes are now in the hands of giant companies — squeezing renters for revenue and putting the American dream even further out of reach.

Global financial giants swear off funding an especially dirty fuel Christopher Flavelle New York Times February 12, 2020

How Private Equity Makes You Sicker Eileen Applebaum American Prospect October 7, 2019
Investment firms have created consolidated hospital empires across America, leading to closures, higher prices, and suffering.

T-Mobile and Sprint are set to merge as the big get bigger Edmund Lee New York Times February 11, 2020

How U.S. firms helped Africa’s richest women exploit her country’s wealth Michael Forsythe, Kyra Gurney, Scilla Alecci and Ben Hallman New York Times January 19, 2020

Mr. Kristof and Ms. WuDunn are the authors of “Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope,” from which this essay is adapted.

Who killed the Knapp family? Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn New York Times January 9, 2020
Across America, working-class people — including many of our friends — are dying of despair. And we’re still blaming the wrong people.

More than a third of U.S. healthcare costs go to bureaucracy Linda Carroll Reuters January 6, 2020
U.S. insurers and providers spent more than $800 billion in 2017 on administration, or nearly $2,500 per person – more than four times the per-capita administrative costs in Canada’s single-payer system, a new study finds. The original journal article may be viewed at Health Care Administrative Costs in the United States and Canada, 2017

Oppression and Exploitation News December 25, 2019 – January 1, 2020

Opposing oppression, injustice 2019

All the political revolts America ignored in 2019 Juan Cole Truthdig December 26, 2019

25 journalists killed in 2019 64 journalists missing in 2019 Committee to Protect Journalists December 2019

Special Report: Iran’s leader ordered crackdown on unrest – ‘Do whatever it takes to end it’ – about 1,500 killled Reuters December 23, 2019

A year of protests sparked change around the globe Alan Crawford Bloomberg News December 6, 2019

Harm through the market 2019

Prime power: How Amazon squeezes the businesses behind its store Karen Weise New York Times December 19, 2019
Twenty years ago, Amazon opened its storefront to anyone who wanted to sell something. Then it began demanding more out of them.

Prime leverage: How Amazon wields power in the technology world Daisuke Wakabayashi New York Times December 15, 2019
Software start-ups have a phrase for what Amazon is doing to them: ‘strip-mining’ them of their innovations.

Discrimination 2019

We are witnessing a rediscovery of India’s Republic Rohit De and Surabhi Ranganathan New York Times December 27, 2019
Indians protesting against a discriminatory citizenship law are using the Constitution as a rallying cry.

Indian parliament passes divisive citizenship bill, moving It closer to law Jeffrey Gettleman and Sushasini Raj New York Times December 11, 2019 Updated December 16, 2019

Obtaining income through the government 2019

How big companies won new tax breaks from the Trump administration Jesse Drucker and Jim Tankersley New York Times December 30, 2019
As the Treasury Department prepared to enact the 2017 Republican tax overhaul, corporate lobbyists swarmed — and won big.

Corporate tax avoidance in the first year of the Trump tax law Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy December 16, 2019
When drafting the tax law, lawmakers could have eliminated special breaks and loopholes in the corporate tax to offset the cost of reducing the statutory rate. Instead, the new law introduced many new breaks and loopholes, though it eliminated some old ones. The unsurprising result: Profitable American corporations in 2018 collectively paid an average effective federal income tax rate of 11.3 percent on their 2018 income, barely more than half the 21 percent statutory tax rate.