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Archive for October 2010

The root of all evil will rule mid-term elections

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Come Tuesday, Nov. 2, it will not matter whether you vote Democratic, Republican, Independent, Green, Tea, or write-in. That’s because the winning entity will not be on the ballot — and hasn’t been for a very long time.

Come Wednesday, Nov. 3, anchors and pundits alike will announce, pronounce, anoint, or castigate individuals wearing the colors of the Red or Blue parties. Few, if any, will comment on the real winner. The newly elected or re-elected will mouth platitudes such as “the people have spoken” or “we’re here to do the work of the American people.”

Nope. The winners will have been chosen, as they have been on average for half a century by less than half of the voting-age population, to serve the corporate dollar.

That’s because come Nov. 3, the winner of the mid-term elections — and statewide races across the nation — will have been well-hidden corporate and billionaire money.
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Written by Dr. Denny Wilkins

October 4, 2010 at 11:03 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Hedge funds, sensing profit opportunities, buying distressed newspapers

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And now, newspapers’ newest problem: The vultures have descended.

Newspapers continue to lose money and advertising – the New York Times Co. reported print ads would decline 5 percent in the third quarter across all its media. But investors are actually buying newspaper properties, often through bankruptcy sales.

What gives? Are they vultures just picking over already tattered carcasses for spare change? Or do these investors expect to make significant money – somehow?

The New York TimesJulie Creswell reports that

A handful of hedge funds, as well as some big banks, are vying for ownership or have already gained controlling interests in newspapers across the country, including The Los Angeles Times, The Minneapolis Star Tribune and The Chicago Tribune.

And it’s not just newspapers or newspaper companies. They’re buying supermarket tabs, television properties, radio and big publishers. Creswell’s story identifies who’s buying what. But a secretive investor is the most active.

Creswell calls Randall D. Smith a pioneer of vulture investing. Vulture investors seek to profit by buying debt of companies who are bankrupt or unable to obtain credit. They buy the assets of such companies at low cost. They can profit by breaking the whole and selling the parts at high enough prices to offset initial investment cost. Some are specialists in reviving distressed companies.

But newspapers? Can properties be more distressed than them? Haven’t media corporations hacked and whacked at costs for a decade already? What’s left to cut that would allow the low revenue to achieve a high profit?
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Written by Dr. Denny Wilkins

October 2, 2010 at 4:40 pm

Posted in Uncategorized