by Max Brantley
The line is open. Parting words:
* LAKE MAUMELLE UPDATE: I wrote earlier about the lack of local filings by state-registered lobbyists who are helping to fight land use controls in the Lake Maumelle watershed. One was Brent Stevenson, lobbyist for landowner Deltic and the Koch boys. He still hasn't returned my call. BUT ... today he updated his STATE lobbying registration form to add Mark and Lori White of Bigelow and the Pulaski County Property Owners Coalition of Bigelow, both part of the anti-zoning movement. I'm sure that update was coincidental to my item this morning. TUESDAY UPDATE: Stevenson has also filed with county officials now and says he is working solely for the Whites and the Coalition insofar as the watershed is concerned, though he acknowledges he's been attending meetings on the issue for some time. I also have an ethics update from the Koch front group that indicates registration will be forthcoming. See the earlier item.
* 'CORPORATIONS SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO HAVE THEIR VOICES HEARD': Thus sayeth Republican U.S. Rep. Steve Womack in a letter to a constituent about the infamous Citizens United ruling. That is about all you really need to know.
* TOP THIS LEDE PARAGRAPH: Suffocation of prostitute fiancee; meth and bondage sex party; incinerated corpse. You won't see one like this often, thank goodness. "Engagement party gone bad," was how understated D-G teaser put it.
* RICH PEOPLE DON'T CREATE JOBS: So says a very rich person (an early investor in Amazon) who's had a hand in creating a huge number of jobs, in Businessweek. Snippet:
I can start a business based on a great idea, and initially hire dozens or hundreds of people. But if no one can afford to buy what I have to sell, my business will soon fail and all those jobs will evaporate.
That’s why I can say with confidence that rich people don’t create jobs, nor do businesses, large or small. What does lead to more employment is the feedback loop between customers and businesses. And only consumers can set in motion a virtuous cycle that allows companies to survive and thrive and business owners to hire. An ordinary middle-class consumer is far more of a job creator than I ever have been or ever will be.
When businesspeople take credit for creating jobs, it is like squirrels taking credit for creating evolution. In fact, it’s the other way around.
It is unquestionably true that without entrepreneurs and investors, you can’t have a dynamic and growing capitalist economy. But it’s equally true that without consumers, you can’t have entrepreneurs and investors. And the more we have happy customers with lots of disposable income, the better our businesses will do.
That’s why our current policies are so upside down. When the American middle class defends a tax system in which the lion’s share of benefits accrues to the richest, all in the name of job creation, all that happens is that the rich get richer.
And that’s what has been happening in the U.S. for the last 30 years.