Amazon pulls out of NYC

Discussion in 'The Slant Political Board' started by nick77, Feb 14, 2019.

  1. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    @floydmaster also If I'm not mistaken, Cynthia Nixon while ultimately running failed campaign, ended up pushing Cuomo to the left a little - or at least getting him record to promise to do so.

    Looks like things are gradually shifting. Now if only someone can successfully primary Mikey Madigan in IL, hoo boy.
     
  2. hill6

    hill6 Senior
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    Exactly. And the argument, "but they will bring in $25B over 25 years" relies on the stars to align. Look at sports stadiums. Teams get hundreds of millions in public funding to build stadiums with the idea they will A) keep the team in the city, and B) spur growth around the stadium that benefits everyone. While there are a few exceptions, by and large the growth and tax revenues from any said growth does not materialize. And the team, after a few years, threatens to leave unless they get another tax benefit/stimulus.

    In the end, what happens is the city loses millions, doesn't see the promised growth and increased taxes, and the owners of the teams see their investments increase because they now have a shiny new stadium and oftentimes make additional profit by owning surrounding land (e.g. Staples) or owning the concessions (e.g. Dallas). It's a scam.
     
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  3. cwobrien11

    cwobrien11 All-Conference
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    First, the way that the deal is structured prevented Amazon from weaseling out of things. Amazon would only received the benefit if they met the criteria. The criteria was set by NY state. NYC set the criteria for the employment tax break (which is still open to any business that moves there) and the relocation benefit (still open to any business that moves into the areas of the city where it is offered...typically in underdeveloped or poorly maintained areas of the city). It’s not an upfront tax break. It’s not available if they don’t meet the obligation.

    Additionally, Amazon was building a $5 bil facility. Even if they wanted to leave after 5 years, the only way that they could is to sell it is if the entire area is built up...it’s worth half of the cost to build if the area doesn’t develop. It’s not like we are talking about a building in the financial district or in midtown where a lot of businesses want to be. This is in LIC...Amazon was going to be the anchor that other businesses built around.

    If Amazon bails, the city and the state don’t lose a dime. The additional income tax revenue more than pays for itself even in the short term. This is a minimal risk, high return investment.

    Second, is the issue really about a corporation getting a tax incentive to come to a location? It’s a mutually beneficial relationship. The city puts out an offer to attract a company that’s going to boost its economy.

    It’s no different than giving a job offer to a potential employee who is fielding multiple offers. I’m going to put an offer out there that’s both affordable for me and attractive to the candidate. Maybe that’s a signing bonus or a relocation package. Maybe it’s an extra week of vacation. There are stipulations on those as well...if the employee bails before the stipulations have been met, I get paid back.

    I’m not sure anyone is going to change my mind on this and it’s pretty clear that I’m not changing yours. I see an area that’s in need of additional tax revenue to help sustain and improve its infrastructure, schools, services, etc. that didn’t like the optics and pushed a company away. You see something entirely different.
     
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  4. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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  5. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    Even if Amazon lived up to its part of the deal, which I think was a reasonable expectation, I don't think these issues can always be reduced to a math problem, i.e. $3 billion in tax subsidy = $25 billion in tax revenue. There's a lot more qualitative issues at stake than the simple quantitative goal of making numbers bigger, and that's the part that I think a lot of people miss.
     
  6. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    Lets say this is the first deal of it'd kind - it lives up to all of the grand promises (and it would in fact be the first) which is doubtful when you look at its track record on labor, but lets say all promises are actually kept.

    Would you be OK with this deal when your rent increased a few hundred a month? And I say rent because it's hard to own real estate in many places in that area.

    I'm just guessing here but I feel you are in the camp of all taxes are bad they should be low as possible.
     
  7. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    Cw, I appreciate your knowledgable arguments on this, but I take a lot of issue with this analogy:

    It’s no different than giving a job offer to a potential employee who is fielding multiple offers.

    A city offering tax subsidies for a corporation to move in is immensely different than an individual business offering bonus packages to prospective hires. I think that's what's missing in your analysis of this deal -- it's not simply a math problem. And even if it was, it's not a very simple math problem, because those numeric positives are not nearly equal (or even necessarily positive) for thousands of people that would be impacted.
     
  8. jt212713

    jt212713 Senior
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    You don't really have a policy complaint, it seems. You're simply upset that your rent is too damn high. I get it. Choices. Choices. Sounds like you're getting close to the point of moving. Can't say I'd blame you. And I love NYC.
     
  9. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    He doesn't live in NYC, and he wasn't complaining about his rent, particularly since he said earlier that he owns.

    This is a bad attempt at an ad hominem red herring.
     
  10. jt212713

    jt212713 Senior
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    A bad attempt, perhaps.

    I'm just trying to see this from your side. And when people think the government was writing amazon a check, well, it's hard to take that seriously.
     
  11. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    I have a complaint against any policy that destroys communities. I have a high mortgage because I chose to do so, the area was already gentrified.

    Most of us are not that fortunate and forced to move and/or lose their jobs when existing businesses shutters.

    These deals kill communities.

    The number of people for deals like these that will get priced out of their communities are zero. You'd be among that number, too.
     
  12. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    Whether you get a check for X or you don't have to pay X in taxes that you would otherwise have to pay, isn't the end result, at some point in the future, that you end up with X more dollars?
     
  13. cwobrien11

    cwobrien11 All-Conference
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    Please explain the differences. I'm not being a smartass here. I really do want to understand whatever it is that I'm not understanding. This really does feel like the benefits outweigh the risks. Help me understand whatever it is that I'm not seeing.
     
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  14. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    We don't think you are being one but every single post you are touting assumptions that the end result will be as promised, and it's usually never is.

    You also are clearly ignoring or failing to consider existing communities and gentrification; it clearly would be a good deal for some but the opposite for many - you have residents that are absolutely terrified when these things come up.

    Hell, Chicago collectively rejoiced when they lost the 2016 Olympics bid, why do you think that is? Look at any number of my posts in this thread. We seriously were jumping for joy in Daley Plaza when Rio was announced (admittedly some were upset but they were in the minority)
     
  15. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    Eminent domain how do you proponents of the Amazon deal feel about that?

    No difference.

    One could argue what's not to like? It provides an improvement somewhere so what's the big deal you lose your house?

    That is the argument I am reading in this thread.
     
  16. hill6

    hill6 Senior
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    I haven't followed closely your back and forth but answer these questions, if you would, to help clarify:

    Do you think Amazon's economic projections will actually come to pass?

    Do you think Amazon's move to NYC will alter the current culture of the place (e.g. higher rents, massive transplants, pushing out longtime residents, etc.)?

    Is Amazon obligated to stay for 25 years?

    Do you think the tax break to bring Amazon would be better served as a tax break to small, locally owned businesses?

    Do you think it makes sense (not just economically, but overall) to be giving tax cuts to companies worth close to a trillion?
     
  17. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    I feel like you're only taking a fairly narrow macro perspective, which is fine, and in that case I agree with you (which is why I was generally in favor of the deal when it was announced). I have little doubt that NYC and NYS would end up with significantly more in tax revenue than they gave Amazon in tax breaks. (Although it's not a guarantee that a business that rarely pays any taxes in the first place would follow through on their end of the tax revenue bargain.)

    My point is that the tax revenue +/- is not the only part of the equation that matters to people.

    Local residents, both renters and landlords, would be greatly impacted. It definitely would have resulted in many small businesses in the area getting pushed out by rising rents as well. It would add significant strain to NYC's transit system and infrastructure in the area.

    On the political angle, people, particularly New Yorkers, are beyond fed up with (what are perceived as) handouts to the rich. It also created the impression that Amazon had more to contribute to NYC than vice versa. New Yorkers did not like Gov. Cuomo handing Bezos billions in tax subsidies after spending years squeezing the MTA dry out of pure politics.

    People are also very tired of being told that if their community cozies up to this or that corporation or mega-wealthy "job creator," everybody's boats will rise. You can only run that scam so many times before people start heating up the tar and plucking the chickens, and business interests have been running it for decades now.

    I'm a utilitarian. I'm fully aware and often in favor of breaking a few eggs to enact big positive changes for the larger community. I also fully acknowledge the positive impacts that big employers like Amazon can have on a community and the larger economy.

    But it's also important to recognize and acknowledge that those impacts are definitely not all positive for all people, and the impact of this deal went well beyond the macro tax revenue or job creation algebra that you're focusing on.
     
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  18. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    http://www.walmartsubsidywatch.org/

    another example: WAL-MART

    They seriously train managers to teach their 'associates' how to apply for medicaid and food stamps and other welfare instead of just paying them more. Literally is a drain on the community. These are so-called 'entitlements' that conservatives want to destroy for individuals but beat the drums for corporations.

    I honestly don't think we can ever grasp just how many hidden taxpayer burdens that ultimately come along with these deals.
     
  19. cwobrien11

    cwobrien11 All-Conference
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    You are guessing. And you’re also incorrect.
     
  20. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    This is a very good point, and something I forgot to include in my previous post.

    Amazon is notoriously anti-union. NYC is notoriously pro-union. Labor activists were already gearing up to take on Amazon when it arrived.

    Amazon's poor labor record for its blue-collar workers in particular was a sticking point for many of those opposed to the deal. People don't like corporate welfare in general, but when that corporate welfare is then turned into jobs designed to drum people out in less than three years after working them to the bone at subpar wages, it can motivate a lot of pushback.
     
  21. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    On that last statement about your stance on taxes, sure. Not about any other statements though.

    But my question remains: If this deal right here and right now hinged upon forcing you to pack it and move you'd be ok with that?
     
  22. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    In many warehouses they refused to provide air conditioning, because money. Only when the media got wind of it did they do anything.

    Workers forced to clock out earlier while still being forced to wait to finish other tasks. Delivery drivers pooping on the side of the street.

    People like to bag on unions but it is behavior like this that they exist.

    But it's all good right? Because Bezos makes millions every single day. I find it ironic that conservatives hate him because he's a limosuine liberal and owns the WaPo but champion his very business model and defend his tactics.
     
  23. cwobrien11

    cwobrien11 All-Conference
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    In this hypothetical, I have choices. I can pay the increased rent and stay or I can choose to leave. I would have to make that choice.
     
  24. !hawk!

    !hawk! All-Conference
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    LOL
     
  25. cwobrien11

    cwobrien11 All-Conference
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    You can laugh. Have at it.
     
  26. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    I mean, many people literally can't "choose" to pay a higher rent. I think that's the point.
     
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  27. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    Would be very nice for many to have that choice. I already knew the answer, you'd be pissed off and you wouldn't be on here defending deals like these.
     
  28. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    I should also clarify, I'm not anti-gentrification. I think the positives of gentrification often strongly outweigh the negatives. I've lived out here long enough now to have literally seen it happen.

    But that doesn't mean we shouldn't acknowledge and take very seriously the harm that gentrification can do to poor people that are forced to move away, and we need to try to find ways to mitigate those negative impacts.
     
  29. !hawk!

    !hawk! All-Conference
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    I am very against shanty towns I just want that understood.
     
  30. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    What about Hoovervilles or tent cities?
     
  31. !hawk!

    !hawk! All-Conference
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    I’m all for masses bum rushing the powerful and tearing them limb from limb.
     
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  32. jt212713

    jt212713 Senior
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    The silver lining in this debacle is that AOC is being exposed as the pied piper for the immoral and intellectual lightweights that support her.
     
  33. floydmaster

    floydmaster All-American
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    Lol, sure she is.
     
  34. !hawk!

    !hawk! All-Conference
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    They got her!
     
  35. jt212713

    jt212713 Senior
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    Floyd- Evan Joe and Mika have turned on her.

    Regardless, her positions are largely immoral and she she’s leading the decay of lucidity in public policy.

    I mean no offense if you’re on that train and if you fall her her act. She’s only viable as a voice of opposition to rile up voters.
     
  36. hill6

    hill6 Senior
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    Explain. She's providing an alternative view and theory on what we should be focusing on. Describe why you say her position is "immoral" and she's "leading the decay of lucidity."

    I'm not sure I agree with everything she's done as I haven't paid her much attention, but I certainly wouldn't say her positions are immoral nor would I say she's leading the decay. I think Trump, the GOP, and right wing media are on the third lap of that.
     
  37. jt212713

    jt212713 Senior
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    I’m no Trump supporter. But I do believe in freedom and capitalism.

    I’m opposed to the government takeover of major sectors of our economy.

    I’m opposed to taxing anyone as as she says is necessary.

    I admire that she went from bartender to congresswomen. But she did that because of the very system she now rails against. Her story wouldn’t be possible in the less-free society she dreams of.

    It is immoral for the the government to take control of people’s lives as she so strongly advocates for.

    And before you clap back, I’m not against government. I’m for responsible, reasonable government that protects the rights of its people. All people.
     
  38. hill6

    hill6 Senior
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    How is she opposed to freedom and capitalism?

    What major sectors of the economy is she advocating the government take over? If I understand correctly, her healthcare plan allows for private health care still.

    Her railing against the system doesn't mean the access to climbing isn't still available. She's not talking about the complete destruction of capitalism.

    Take control of people's lives? Explain.

    Protects the rights of its people? That's precisely what she's arguing for. If you truly believe you want rights for all people, you should be a huge supporter of hers because that's her point.

    With all due respect, a lot of what you complain about sounds like a Fox News 101 on her - which is basically mischaracterizing and painting her positions to the point of fiction.
     
  39. nick77

    nick77 All-Conference
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    LOL. Joe is a Republican more or less. MSNBC and their ilk are what we call limousine liberals. They are centrists and absolutely mortified of progressives wielding power.

    You speak as if all Democrats are the same.
     
  40. !hawk!

    !hawk! All-Conference
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    “When I lost Joe and Mika, I lost the nation.”____ No one ever.
     

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