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I have been “retired” since September of 2020, and not by choice.  My company had huge layoffs due to the collapse of aerospace last year, and I took a very generous retirement package.  I’ve been living on Social Security since then, and I hate being on the dole. Last week, a recruiter who saw my […]

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Alexandra Desanctis Marr is in for Jim today.  Alexandra and Greg cheer Senate Republicans for blocking the Democrats’ very expensive “infrastructure” bill, which doesn’t even exist yet. They also slam House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for further politicizing the committee tasked with investigating the Capitol Hill riot by rejecting two GOP members. And they scratch their heads after President Biden’s latest town hall is filled with false statements and incoherent moments.

This week on JobMakers, Host Denzil Mohammed talks with Anita Worden, renewable energy business entrepreneur, about her work to improve representation of women in crucial economic sectors like technology, a place where they can innovate and have real impact.  Anita was born in England of Indian parents, grew up in Algeria, moved to the U.S. as a teenager, and attended MIT. While still a student, she co-founded her first company, Solectria Corporation, in 1989, and then went on to found Solectria Renewables in 2005, both of which were acquired.  Now retired, Anita is working to promote tech as a viable, lucrative and satisfying career choice for women and girls, just as she’s educating Americans about her passions, climate change and shifting the narrative around immigrants in the U.S.

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“Shrink-flation” refers to the behavior of packaged-food makers who, instead of raising prices on existing products, reduce the package size and charge the same price.  Remember when you could get a half-gallon of ice cream?  The ice cream makers have been reducing package size for years, and are still doing so now. So, what would […]

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Rob Long in for Jim today.  Rob and Greg get a kick out of Democrats in multiple states gearing up for 2022 by not mentioning they are Democrats or by criticizing their own party. They also shudder as economists expect this inflation to last for years and media acts like Biden policies have nothing to do with it. And they discuss how horribly wrong President Biden was in claiming the illegal immigration surge at our border would taper off when the summer heat arrived.

Four martinis for the price of three today! First, Jim and Greg are thrilled to know their vision for Disney CTU is now a reality. They also cheer the Senate for passing legislation banning imports likely produced through slave labor in China’s Xinjiang Province. Then they hammer the Black Lives Matter Organization for defending the communist regime in Cuba, blaming the U.S. embargo for the misery there, and praising the Cuban government for giving asylum to an American cop killer. Finally, they react to the American Booksellers Association apologizing for including a “violent” book in its recent mailing – because it urges parents to be wary of the transgender movement.

This week on JobMakers, Host Denzil Mohammed talks with David Dyssegaard Kallick, Deputy Director of the nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank Fiscal Policy Institute and Assistant Visiting Professor at the Pratt Institute, on the impact of immigrants in local and national settings. And what he’s found should come as no surprise: immigrants and refugees are a net benefit to the U.S. and always have been. In fact, we owe a lot to immigration for revitalizing metro U.S. after population loss and economic decline since the 1960s, enriching our culture and cuisine, making our communities safer, creating jobs and businesses, and giving us a competitive edge when it comes to innovation, as you’ll find out in this week’s JobMakers podcast.

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Earlier today, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its monthly inflation report, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI).  Here are the two key graphics. (1) One-month percent change in CPI, seasonally adjusted:  This graph shows the inflation for each specific months from June 2020 through July 2020. Preview Open

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Jim & Greg cheer on the Cubans taking to the streets to demand their freedom, despite the very real threat of punishment from the government. They also shake their heads at a new Wall Street Journal report showing the massive amount of debt Master’s degree students are piling up and then not getting the lucrative jobs they dreamed about. And they get a kick out of Vice President Kamala Harris being reluctant to support voter ID requirements because she believes Americans in rural areas don’t have access to photocopiers.!

Join Jim and Greg as they slam radical Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib for wanting to defund Customs & Border Patrol, ICE, and the entire Department of Homeland Security. They also unload on the 40 leftist groups urging President Biden to look the other way on Uighur genocide and Hong Kong repression in order to build cooperation for a climate change agenda. And they have fun with John Kerry getting caught doing what John Kerry does best – thinking the rules don’t apply to him.

This week on JobMakers, host Denzil Mohammed talks with Ely Kaplansky, President & CEO of Kaplansky Insurance. Ely’s unconventional path included dropping out of high school and essentially taking the place of the insurance business where he got his start, when it was found that they were committing unethical practices. And since 1974, Ely has created hundreds of jobs in Massachusetts and beyond, with 85 employees in 15 offices across the state today, and he has grown his business especially during the pandemic, with 37 acquisitions to date, such that Kaplansky Insurance was named to INC’s 5000 Fastest-Growing Private Companies in America list.  Ely’s success is more than just the pride of having made it. His success fulfilled the dreams of his parents when they moved from Israel to America in 1955, with just the clothes on their backs and an aunt to take them in. Their journey began in the concentration camps of Germany, and Ely’s story is all about the opportunity and freedom America offers, as you’ll discover in this week’s JobMakers.

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I Despise the Concept of ESG Investing, but the H&M Situation Might Warrant a Second Look

 

Last month, the Wall Street Journal ran a story about the clothing retailer, Hennes & Mauritz (H&M), a Swedish company that sells “fast-fashion” apparel worldwide. They are a member of a fashion trade group whose members “have adopted environmental and human-rights concerns as part of their image.” Recently, members of the group have had some difficulty with the human-rights issue of cotton and apparel sourced from the Xinjiang region of Communist China, which is known to be engaging in genocide and forced labor of Uighur Muslims. H&M had a statement on their website that they were hesitant to source raw materials from Xinjiang, because of human-rights concerns.

That statement has brought down the wrath of the Communist Chinese government and consumers on the company. Their stores disappeared from the social media sites in China that were their main marketing channel in the country and state-controlled media came down hard on them. The State urged citizens to boycott the company’s stores and products, and their sales in China were reduced. From a WSJ article on Friday:

This week on JobMakers, Host Denzil Mohammed talks with Russian-born entrepreneur Semyon Dukach about the high value of immigrants to the U.S. Dukach started a seed stage fund for immigrant tech founders, One Way Ventures, in response to the early restrictive moves of the Trump administration, particularly the Muslim ban. In his 20 years of angel investing, he noticed a trend: immigrant-led companies repeatedly outperformed the rest of his portfolio. Indeed, immigrants make up less than 14 percent of the U.S. population but launched 24 percent of high-tech startups and founded or co-founded 55 percent of America’s billion-dollar startups. In this episode, Dukach shares his thoughts on how to reform America’s immigration policies.

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Hubwonk host Joe Selvaggi talks with MassLandlords’ Doug Quattrochi about ways landlords faced the challenges of being caught between tenants unable to pay rent during COVID-19 shutdown and having little or no programmatic relief from state and federal agencies.

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Jim and guest host Chad Benson cheer on the New York Times as they publish a new op-ed detailing the evidence for the lab leak theory in a fair way. They also try to understand why the GOP is willing to make a lose-lose compromise with Senate Democrats on infrastructure spending. Lastly, they marvel at another New York Times op-ed by X-Files creator Chris Carter in which he states why he is skeptical of the Pentagon UFO report.

This week on JobMakers, Host Denzil Mohammed talks with Umesh Bhuju, owner of Zumi’s Espresso in Ipswich, Massachusetts, about how a business model based on selling nothing but fair-trade products can thrive in a world driven by profit. He describes his early experiences in his homeland of Nepal, where he witnessed child labor, and how that has shaped his pursuit of the American dream. Over the past 20 years, through his successful business, he’s been educating Americans about just how far their dollar can go – paying farmers respectable wages, reducing environmental impact, and supporting developing economies; as well as how businesses can catalyze social progress. In this episode, Umesh shares how he has extended his activism to fighting for the rights of immigrants, preserving local habitats, and combatting food insecurity during the pandemic, even as his own business has battled the downturn.

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Since we are entering a period of inflation that will make us look upon the 1970s with wistful nostalgia (much in the same way that Gov. Gavin Newsom makes us wax nostalgic for the conservative days of Gov. Moonbeam, Jerry Brown), those of you who are David Baldacci fans may recall his 1997 book Total […]

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Sorting Out the Global Tax Mess

 

The Group of Seven (G-7)—Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States—met last week in Cornwall, England. High on its agenda was establishing basic agreement on three major proposals for remaking the international tax system, whose structure looms ever larger in today’s global economy.

These three proposals are of uneven merit. The first calls for a 15 percent minimum tax on the global income of all international companies. This means that each company will have to pay at least 15 percent of its income in taxes in every nation in which it does business. The second is targeted against various kinds of tax havens. Under today’s law, the corporate tax is localized to the nation that hosts the corporate headquarters. The new proposal allows a limited corporate tax to be imposed in those nations where those company’s products and services are “consumed.” The tax would be imposed only on the 100 largest global companies, to be measured by some future metric, which would be calculated as follows: the first 10 percent of any allocated profits would be taxed as they are under the current system, but 20 percent of the profits above that 10 percent threshold would be taxed under this new regime. Third, as part of the overall deal, each of the various nations agrees to eliminate special taxes on digital sales at the place where the sale is completed, but not at the place where the products are made.

At the outset, it is important to establish a sensible metric by which to judge these proposals. To a classical liberal, the proper approach seeks to move government tax policy to the ideal that has been congenial since the earliest time: low flat taxes on a broad range of economic activities, which seeks to drive up production and income. In the long run, this means taxation imposes fewer economic distortions on underlying market activities.