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Boardrooms Still Lack Women

Gender_Map by Data Morphosis and TWO-N demonstrates that women make up just 10.7% of all US company board members. They are best represented at Avon, where more than half the board is female. Eighteen S&P 500 companies have male directors exclusively. (Via Forbes, where the article is adorned with a pink [!] bar graph.)
posted by GrammarMoses on Jul 10, 2014 - 6 comments

Corporations are people too, my friends. Special, unaccountable people.

How corporations became people you can't sue.
posted by T.D. Strange on Jun 15, 2014 - 75 comments

Evenly distribute the future: Issuing more bio-survival tickets

VC for the people - "It's just that people who have options are much more likely to actually find success than people who don't." [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Apr 18, 2014 - 20 comments

Aggregate Demand Management: "pass a law allowing the Fed to cut checks"

Free Money for Everyone - "A wacky-sounding idea with surprisingly conservative roots may be our best hope for escaping endless, grinding economic stagnation." (via) [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Mar 16, 2014 - 19 comments

NYC events this weekend inc.: Lunar New Year, concerts, football game.

NFL holds Super Bowl in NYC; NYC unimpressed. While the stadium is technically in New Jersey, it is considered equally if not primarily a New York stadium, and the NFL turned Times Square and Broadway into Super Bowl Boulevard Engineered By GMC. Visitors can kick a football, watch television, ride a toboggan, shop, enjoy a free slice of Papa John's pizza, play XBox, take a photo with the oversized Roman numerals 'XLVIII', use relevant Twitter hashtags, and more. It is not decadent and depraved, though Vice and Gothamist would tend to disagree. The Times discusses less vehement disapproval and disappointment, while Business Insider wishes ill upon the city. Ticket sales are faltering relative to recent years, with the new mayor among those skipping out.
posted by save alive nothing that breatheth on Jan 31, 2014 - 104 comments

offshore companies for everyone!

Want to get away with not paying taxes but don't have the money to make your own offshore company in the Cayman Islands? Fret not - you can hijack an existing offshore company starting from the low low price of 99 cents! [more inside]
posted by divabat on Jan 25, 2014 - 10 comments

America's New Masters

This shift in how companies are governed and raise money is bringing with it a structural change in American capitalism. That should be a matter of great debate. Are these new businesses, with their ability to circumvent rules that apply to conventional public companies, merely adroit exploiters of loopholes for the benefit of a plutocratic few? Or do they reflect the adaptability on which America’s vitality has always been based? - Rise of the distorporation - how changes in the way companies are financed and managed is changing the wealth distribution of America.
posted by Artw on Nov 2, 2013 - 23 comments

Bring Back Those Glorious Years

Everything's Coming Up Profits is a new book by Steve Young and Sport Murphy detailing the Industrial, Corporate Musicals of the 50s-70s. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Oct 21, 2013 - 9 comments

Game behind gamed: your narrative programming for the day

How The Economic Machine Works by Ray Dalio[1] actually makes a case against austerity[2] and for redistribution, but also for money printing (and, arguably, for bailouts), while stressing the need to keep making productivity-improving public and private investments. However, it could be equally entitled: How The Industrial Age Political-Economy Doesn't Work Anymore, viz. Surviving Progress (2011)... [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Sep 25, 2013 - 28 comments

"What we’re doing is preventing them from being able to get signatures"

Payday lenders target the working poor with quick loans at exorbitant interest rates. When a ballot initiative drive in Missouri threatened this lucrative business, the payday lenders fought back with everything they had--their money. A ProPublica report, published yesterday in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch documents the web of secret donations and intimidation that smothered the reform movement.
posted by Horace Rumpole on Aug 3, 2013 - 59 comments

A Game of Brands

Game of Brands: The Game of Thrones Houses as Modern Corporations (Article contains spoilers if you're not up on the end of the current season of the series.) Ads, logos, the whole thing, for such companies as Air Targaeryen, the Lannister Investment Group... [more inside]
posted by mephron on Jul 29, 2013 - 35 comments

"The bloodiest battles took place in the marketing meetings"

Plagued by the realities threatening many retail stores, Sears also faces a unique problem (alternate link): [CEO Eddie] Lampert. Lampert runs Sears like a hedge fund portfolio, with dozens of autonomous businesses competing for his attention and money. An outspoken advocate of free-market economics and fan of the novelist Ayn Rand, he created the model because he expected the invisible hand of the market to drive better results. If the company’s leaders were told to act selfishly, he argued, they would run their divisions in a rational manner, boosting overall performance.
posted by Horace Rumpole on Jul 12, 2013 - 119 comments

Corporations hijacked the First Amendment

The Right to Evade Regulation: How corporations hijacked the First Amendment.
posted by homunculus on Jun 4, 2013 - 12 comments

Corporate Spirit: how many times did you cry yesterday?

Corporate Spirit uses stock photography to tell a deranged tale about living the corporate life.
posted by Foci for Analysis on May 24, 2013 - 36 comments

"Distribution is the core of the problem we face."

Trade-offs between inequality, productivity, and employment - "The poor do not employ one another, because the necessities they require are produced and sold so cheaply by the rich. The rich are glad to sell to the poor, as long as the poor can come up with property or debt claims or other forms of insurance to offer as payment..." [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Sep 4, 2012 - 45 comments

"resistance and fighting for life is meaningful"

Chris Hedges interviewed by Bill Moyers is profound, insightful and inspiring. In one of the most pointed, sweeping and personal public conversations about Chris Hedges' life and work yet, Bill Moyers speaks with the journalist after the release of "Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt," the book Hedges co-authored with fellow reporter and artist Joe Sacco. The 50-minute conversation is followed by a segment on Sacco, who talks about the thinking and experiences that moved him to become a "comics journalist." Previously and previously.
posted by nickyskye on Sep 2, 2012 - 20 comments

use value vs. exchange value

What Is Value? What Is Money? (via via) [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Sep 1, 2012 - 15 comments

Hierarchies of hats will still be allowed (nay, encouraged)

The current system of corporate governance is bunk. Capitalist corporations are on the way to certain extinction. Replete with hierarchies that are exceedingly wasteful of human talent and energies, intertwined with toxic finance, co-dependent with political structures that are losing democratic legitimacy fast, a form of post-capitalist, decentralised corporation will, sooner or later, emerge.
An analysis of the management and organizational style of Valve Software.
posted by barnacles on Aug 5, 2012 - 31 comments

Latter-Day Lucre

The most recent issue of Businessweek contains an article about How The Mormon Church Makes Its Billions. There has been a backlash, mostly over the cover.
posted by Fuzzy Monster on Jul 18, 2012 - 296 comments

An Existing, Ecologically-Successful Genus of Collectively Intelligent Artificial Creatures

Our planet is inhabited by two distinct kinds of intelligent beings — individual humans and corporate entities — whose natures and interests are intimately linked. To co-exist well, we need to find ways to define the rights and responsibilities of both individual humans and corporate entities, and to find ways to ensure that corporate entities behave as responsible members of society. (SLAX)(pdf warning)
posted by AElfwine Evenstar on May 13, 2012 - 88 comments

Worst Company in America 2012

Just beating Bank of America, Consumerist readers have voted Electronic Arts the worst company in America
posted by Artw on Apr 4, 2012 - 96 comments

When Corporations abandoned the 99%

In 2010, the top 500 U.S. corporations - the Fortune 500 – generated $10.7 trillion in sales, reaped a whopping $702 billion in profits, and employed 24.9 million people around the globe. Historically, when these corporations have invested in the productive capabilities of their American employees, we’ve had lots of well-paid and stable jobs. That was the case a half century ago.
posted by marienbad on Apr 3, 2012 - 35 comments

How Corporations Corrupt Science at the Public's Expense

How Corporations Corrupt Science at the Public's Expense: Report looks at methods of corporate abuse, suggests steps toward reform [Full Report (PDF)] [Executive Summary (PDF)] [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Mar 11, 2012 - 27 comments

The World As It Is

Chris Hedges: Brace yourself. The American Empire is over. And the descent is going to be horrifying. Long, incredibly intelligent, insightful and pessimistic discussion of the current state of American politics and society, among other topics. Hedges is a long-time journalist, author and professor, winner of Pulitzer Prize and Amnesty International Global Award for Human Rights Journalism for his work at the New York Times. [more inside]
posted by crayz on Jan 3, 2012 - 219 comments

Corporate constituencies: shareholder value vs. real performance

“On the face of it, shareholder value is the dumbest idea in the world” — Jack Welch, 2009. As GE’s CEO in the 80s, however, Welch championed corporate focus on shareholder returns. “Converts to the creed”, the Economist summarizes, “had little time for other ‘stakeholders’: customers, employees, suppliers, society at large and so forth.” What went wrong? Steve Denning describes how such a stance is counterproductive, creates turmoil in capitalism and fosters an environment in which “CEOs and their top managers have massive incentives to focus most of their attentions on the expectations market, rather than the real job of running the company producing real products and services.”
posted by the mad poster! on Dec 27, 2011 - 38 comments

"Bob Shuter, suburban vigilante. Driven by rage to wage a one-man war on the underworld of Kent, Bob Shuter is... The Reprisalizer."

"You're going nowhere, son. Just you, me ad the walls. So wipe that bloody grin off before it's shot off, and don't slouch. You toe rag. You bin. Pay attention when I break you. And break you I will, boy. You're in my manor, now." Buck up! It's Terry Finch's THE REPRISALIZER! Follow Bob Shuter, whose mission of reprisal against his brother's killers, their families, associates, progeny and property takes him across the desolate wasteland of 70s Britain, primarily Kent AKA FINCHLAND. Finch, writer of The Reprisalizer and DRAW!, the cowboy whose name means death, is soon to be the subject of a major motion picture from Matthew Holness, creator of Garth Marenghi's Darkplace.
posted by Artw on Dec 13, 2011 - 15 comments

Ooh, that smell. Can't you smell that smell?

Smell is our most primitive, least understood sense. Perfume manipulates that sense, reminding us of good times past, and speaking of glamour and sophistication to those who get close. --- "Perfume", Episode 1: Something Old, Something New [pt2/pt3/p4]. Guerlain are considered by many to be the essence of Frenchness in a scent. Ancienne école comme attendez! But the house whose founder/namesake wrote his first formulae in the 19th C. face the challenges of the 21st, including the first non-Family perfumer, updating a classic, and the fall of 4th generation family perfumer Jean-Paul Guerlain after his openly racist comments on French TV. We also follow the corporate entity known as Tommy Hilfigger as it tries to bottle and market the scent of Rock & Roll to the Drum 'n Bass generation [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey on Aug 2, 2011 - 34 comments

ALEC Exposed

ALEC Exposed is a wiki site set up by The Center for Media and Democracy which posts and chronicles leaked documents including more than 800 model bills drafted and approved by corporations during ALEC meetings. The documents have been analyzed and marked-up for clarity. Journalists along with the general public are invited to download the documents and sift through the bills in order to help map the connections back to their own state legislation and legislators. [more inside]
posted by stagewhisper on Jul 14, 2011 - 22 comments

some people might call that chutzpah

We have explained that the matching funds provision substantially burdens the speech of privately financed candidates and independent groups. ... We have explained that those burdens cannot be justified by a desire to “level the playing field.” In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court has struck down an Arizona law that provided public funds to candidates who have been outspent by either private funding or independent spending. Link to PDF of full decision. [more inside]
posted by gerryblog on Jun 27, 2011 - 105 comments

Gays and Lesbians for total AT&T World Domination

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation Explains How the AT&T/T-Mobil Merger Promotes Social Justice. [more inside]
posted by fugitivefromchaingang on Jun 3, 2011 - 92 comments

Egg on their Facebooks

Last Friday, USA Today reported that two people from PR firm Burson-Marsteller had been contacting various news outlets and bloggers, pushing a story about how Google's "Social Circle" gmail feature violates users' privacy. The pitch was made on behalf of an unnamed client that The Daily Beast now confirms was Facebook. [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 12, 2011 - 104 comments

Bringing Good Tax Schemes To Life

G.E.’s Strategies Let It Avoid Taxes Altogether. 'General Electric, the nation’s largest corporation, had a very good year in 2010. The company reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, and said $5.1 billion of the total came from its operations in the United States. Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword on Mar 25, 2011 - 119 comments

Robin Hood, CEO?

Will shareholders want to invest in companies that don't have a laser-like focus on profit?" "In one US state, they've just brought in a new law which protects companies who put social responsibility before making money [companies referred to as "benefit corporations"]. . . . Shareholders can't [sue] if the company takes decisions to, for example, protect the environment or buy locally, even if that hurts the bottom line" [7:30 BBC audio report]. One way for entrepreneurs to walk the socially responsible walk is to get certification from B Lab, a non-profit that issues trust marks [the "B Corporation" label] for entire companies, not just individual products: "The B Corporation legal framework bakes your values into the DNA of the company so they can better survive new management, new investors or even new ownership." [more inside]
posted by cybercoitus interruptus on Feb 28, 2011 - 37 comments

Vermont Challenging Corporate Personhood

One year after the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision, which, overturning over 100 years of precedent, opened a floodgate of corporate money into election campaigns, Virginia Lyons (D-VT), has introduced legislation (full text of bill not yet available, articles here and here) in the Vermont State Senate to amend the United States Constitution to explicitly state that corporations are not persons. This would overturn the controversial notion of corporate personhood which was established in the 1800s. Controversial not only for the unequal distribution of rights and responsibilities among humans and corporations, some, like Thom Hartmann (previously), have claimed that the notion of corporate personhood was established as an intentional misinterpretation of the decision as recorded by court reporter J.C. Bancroft Davis, former president of the Newburgh & New York Railway Co. [more inside]
posted by laminarial on Jan 24, 2011 - 102 comments

These astroturf libertarians are the real threat to internet democracy

Right Wing astroturfing A non-scientific analysis of the patterns in forum board discussions on a variety of topics. The gist: discussions of issues in which there's money at stake (like climate change, public health and corporate tax avoidance) are often characterised by amazing levels of abuse and disruption by rightwing libertarians who are pro-corporate, anti-tax, anti-regulation. Discussions of issues in which there's little money at stake tend to be a lot more civilised than debates about issues where companies stand to lose or gain billions.
posted by novenator on Dec 20, 2010 - 79 comments

The Citizens United Shall Never Be Divided

The latest attempt to mitigate the impact of the Citizens United decision has failed, with an attempt to pass transparency rules for corporations funding political advertising failing to reach cloture. Obama comments on this vote in his most recent weekly address. Citizens United v Federal Election Commission (2010) held that corporate funding of independent political broadcasts in candidate elections cannot be limited under the First Amendment. [more inside]
posted by lucien_reeve on Sep 24, 2010 - 44 comments

It's the infrastructure, stupid!

Is the United States becoming a third world country? Macleans thinks so. So does Arianna Huffington. Chris Hedges talked to Ralph Nader and they figured out who's to blame. Thank goodness Michael Kinsley has a solution to the problem.
posted by valkane on Sep 16, 2010 - 103 comments

Salesmen, Not Scientists

Merchants of Doubt is a new book that reports how a small group of scientists committed to an extreme free-market ideology have been employed by large corporations over several decades to cast doubt on such different environmental issues as the risks of tobacco smoke, the dangers of DDT, the effectiveness of the Strategic Defence Initiative, the regulation of CFCs, and the causes of global warming. A review in the Christian Science Monitor calls this "one of the most important books of the year. Exhaustively researched and documented..."
posted by binturong on Jul 12, 2010 - 48 comments

The Empire Strikes Back

How Karl Rove, a few corporate millionaires, and the Citizens United Supreme Court case will overwhelm American elections and rule the Republican party from the shadows: Rove Rides Again
posted by Glibpaxman on May 17, 2010 - 50 comments

Who's in charge of a company, anyway?

The myth of shareholder capitalism. It's commonly believed that a company's primary duty is to maximize shareholder value. Anything that might reduce the returns to shareholders is questionable, including giving employees good wages and benefits. According to a recent article in the Harvard Business Review, this is a misconception, and corporate management is being taught the wrong lessons based on obsolete case law. [more inside]
posted by Lexica on Apr 2, 2010 - 40 comments

Welcome to Federal Court

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled unanimously that a corporation's principal place of business is where the executive's work (HQ), not where the company does business. The practical effect of this ruling is that it will be harder to sue corporations in state courts, which are often more plaintiff-friendly than federal courts. For example, in this case Hertz employees sued the company in California, where they worked, for unpaid overtime and vacation wages. The company tried to move the case to federal court, but it was returned to state court on the basis that most of the company's business was done in California. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed. Justice Breyer, writing for the court, reversed. The Court's decision (pdf format) essentially holds that a company's headquarters is where it is located. [more inside]
posted by bearwife on Feb 23, 2010 - 45 comments

funemployment

How a New Jobless Era Will Transform America
The Great Recession may be over, but this era of high joblessness is probably just beginning. Before it ends, it will likely change the life course and character of a generation of young adults. It will leave an indelible imprint on many blue-collar men. It could cripple marriage as an institution in many communities. It may already be plunging many inner cities into a despair not seen for decades. Ultimately, it is likely to warp our politics, our culture, and the character of our society for years to come. (via rw)
posted by kliuless on Feb 11, 2010 - 84 comments

Eye of Providence

The Business Plot of 1933 has reached a logical conclusion: the Supreme Court has ruled that corporations may spend freely (pdf) to support or oppose candidates for president and Congress.
posted by four panels on Jan 21, 2010 - 332 comments

"We're all temps now."

The Disposable Worker - "In contrast with the past, what is good for America's global corporations is no longer necessarily good for the American people." (single-page print version) [more inside]
posted by Eideteker on Jan 12, 2010 - 100 comments

It's what's for dinner

Ammonia-injected centerfuged fatty trimmings = pink slime + E. Coli. Eight years ago, federal officials were struggling to remove potentially deadly E. coli from hamburgers when an entrepreneurial company from South Dakota came up with a novel idea: injecting beef with ammonia.
posted by cytherea on Jan 1, 2010 - 90 comments

The leader is not the architect of the system but its product.

"This is an America that has transferred its allegiance to spectacle, to pseudo-events, that no longer can determine what is real and what is illusion, that confuses how they’re made to feel with knowledge, that confuses propaganda with ideology, and that’s exceedingly dangerous. All totalitarian societies are image-based societies, and that’s what our society has become."
posted by plexi on Aug 16, 2009 - 127 comments

Liberal media? Free press? Journalistic integrity? How quaint.

The NYT reports that GE has brokered a deal between MSNBC and Fox News to "reconcile" Keith Olbermann and Bill O'Reilly, preventing further criticism of each other or GE. The deal went into effect June 1, the very same day Olbermann declared he was "quarantining" Fox, avoiding discussion of the channel in the future. Mr. Olbermann, who is on vacation, said by e-mail message, “I am party to no deal.” Glenn Greenwald breaks down the political consequences of the deal.
posted by mek on Aug 1, 2009 - 62 comments

war profiteering in Iraq

It is fitting that today’s deadline for the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq’s cities coincides with a meeting in Baghdad to auction off some of the country’s largest oil fields to companies such as ExxonMobil, Chevron and British Petroleum. It is a reminder of the real motives for the 2003 invasion and in whose interests over one million Iraqis and 4,634 American and other Western troops have been killed. However, today's bidding was not the bonanza that was expected. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on Jun 30, 2009 - 44 comments

15 Companies That Might Not Survive 2009

Say goodbye to Blockbuster, Sbarro's, Rite Aid, Krispy Kreme and Chrysler. 15 US companies that probably won't make it through 2009.
posted by CunningLinguist on Feb 11, 2009 - 228 comments

buy-ology blue

"You aren't in as much control as you think you are." Buyology by Martin Lindstrom. Cigarette Health Warnings Stimulate Smoking. Subconscious Encounters: How Brand Exposure Affects Your Choices . A sign is anything that can be used to tell a lie. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on Oct 23, 2008 - 27 comments

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