One Big Wheel

This is a metaphor.

We are watching a circus performer on a flat stage riding a unicycle. It’s a bit unsteady, to say the least. Help or advice are not accepted. Balancing corrections are happening all the time. Almost random changes of direction seem to be built into this situation.

Now the performer announces that he’s the biggest wheel rider, ever. The wheel expands to match his ego. Stability does not improve.

This post is under ‘Person of Interest’ category. It does include a dumb question.

Can you guess who the Big Wheel rider is? Will he fall off?

NAFTA and ‘renegotiation’

NAFTA is not a trade agreement. It is an owners’ agreement.

NAFTA allows the means of production to be moved to wherever labour is cheaper, environmental controls laxer, taxation slacker, or even corruption more lucrative.

The move of Canadian jobs to Mexico was predicted. The subsequent moves to China, Hong Kong, Bangladesh, etc etc were predicted.

NAFTA benefits large corporations and by direct effect, their top executives: those in the bonus pool.

Don’t expect major concessions from these corporate executives. They are not altruistic. They are not nationalistic. They fancy themselves as being an independent species, superior to the mere peons who work for them, and customers who chase the lowest price.

Expect the POTUS to do a lot of in-USA manufacturing posturing. Don’t expect him to get many concessions from his loyal Wall Street ‘friends.’

You were scrolling for the dumb question? Here it is.

What do you think? Are you as cynical as this blogger?

Minimum Wage, and Galen Weston

Here you will find that Galen Weston made some 8.5 million dollars two years ago. His most recent salary is, I believe, over nine million dollars.

Galen would have us believe that the new minimum wage will put his company in difficulty. Some $190 million per year in extra expense. Let me quote a few parts of that article. Emphasis mine.

“We are flagging a significant set of financial headwinds and the organization is mobilizing all of its resources to see whether or not it can close that gap,” Loblaw chair and CEO Galen Weston Jr. told analysts during a quarterly earnings conference call.

Earlier Wednesday, Loblaw reported a second-quarter profit attributable to shareholders of $358 million, or 89 cents per diluted share, up from its profit of $158 million or 39 cents per diluted share a year ago.

I can, perhaps, be forgiven for thinking that Galen Weston and his company can afford to pay his employees a living wage.

I can, perhaps, be forgiven for suspecting that the $190 million is not a deliberate underestimate. I’ll bet it’s worst possible case.

I can, perhaps, be forgiven for noting that the year over year difference in profit is $200 million, and that’s for a quarter – not the whole year. So they have $610 million extra after covering the minumum wage hike.

I used to like Galen Weston. Oh well. Have a nice day.