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Senator Cory Booker – ‘We Need a President…to Enforce Antitrust Laws,’ Digging Warren, POTUS Trump

May 13th, 2019 No comments

 

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Still frame from video, posted below. The text graphics are by MHProNews.

I don’t care if it’s Facebook, the pharma industry, even the agricultural industry. We’ve had a problem in America with corporate consolidation that is having really ill effects,” New Jersey Senator and 2020 Democratic Nomination contender Cory Booker said in an interview for ABC News “This Week.”

 

It’s driving out the independent family farmers. It’s driving up prescription drug costs. And in the realm of technology, we’re seeing…one or two companies controlling a significant amount of the online advertising.” he continued.  Booker’s comments come on the heels of Facebook’s co-founder and former chief executive Chris Hughes’ publicly calling for the breakup of Facebook, see that and other former FB insiders comments, linked here.

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Executive level readers comment.

Tens of thousands of manufactured home industry professionals use Facebook daily.  But the issue of controlling wide swaths of media, or other antitrust concerns that impact manufactured housing, are far broader.

It should be noted that Big Tech, including Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg are more routinely saying to federal officials, ‘regulate us.’ But as deeply-focused, regular, and longtime MHProNews readers know, that call for ‘regulation’ can be akin to big banks getting ‘regulated’ by Dodd-Frank.  The consequences of Dodd-Frank and the regulations that flowed from it were that smaller lenders got driven out.

Rephrased, a giant firm can better handle regulations, which pushes out smaller ones.  Thus FB’s and Zuckerberg’s – or any other similar call for regulation vs. antitrust law breakup – can properly be seen as a ruse that simply won’t work in practice as it is being promoted.  It’s a false flag solution to a real and pressing issue of the growing monopolization of America.  It is possible to posture opposing a big company, but de facto take an action that helps it, rather than controls or breaks it up.

 

Booker on Antitrust, President Trump and Elizabeth Warren

If I’m president of the United States, I will have a Justice Department that uses antitrust legislation to do the proper investigations and to hold industries accountable for corporate consolidation,” Senator Booker said to ABC’s Jonathan Karl.

Booker said he believes in “process,” and in this ABC News video delivered a not too subtle elbow at both fellow Democratic contender, Senator Elizabeth Warren (MA-D) as well as GOP President Donald J. Trump.

In early March, fellow 2020 Democratic candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren called for the breakup of Facebook, Amazon and Google. MHProNews and MHLivingNews have spotlighted Warren’s more aggressive posture on antitrust than some of her fellow Democrats.

As these companies have grown larger and more powerful, they have used their resources and control over the way we use the internet to squash small businesses and innovation, and substitute their own financial interests for the broader interests of the American people,” the Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren wrote. “To restore the balance of power in our democracy, to promote competition and to ensure that the next generation of technology innovation is as vibrant as the last, it’s time to break up our biggest tech companies.”

The arguments being made by these and some other Democratic and GOP voices could be applied to Berkshire Hathaway, Clayton Homes, and their top manufactured home lenders.  It could be applied to Microsoft.  Thus an apt battle cry could be #DeFaangBM. Break up the FAANG companies, plus Berkshire and Microsoft.  These are important places to start the restoration of a more truly free marketplace in the U.S.

 

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Booker said he doesn’t “think that a president should be running around, pointing at companies and…breaking them up without any kind of process here.”

It’s not me and my own personal opinion about going after folks. That sounds more like a Donald Trump thing to say, like, ‘I’m going to break up you guys, I’m gonna break’ — no.” He deflected the point that it was Senator Warren saying that, not President Trump. “Well, that’s what she’s saying. She’s the one that’s saying that,” ABC’s Karl said.

Booker deflected, saying it was up to Senator Warren to discuss her positions.

I’m telling you right now, we do not need a president that is going to use their own personal beliefs and tell you which companies we should break up,” he said. We need a president that’s going to enforce antitrust laws in this country, and I will be that person.”

 

 

Given the crowded nature of the 2020 field, with about 21 Democrats currently in contention, and Howard Schultz possibly moving towards an independent run, hopeful’s like Booker are looking for media oxygen as well as financial support to sustain their White House ambitions.

 

The Issue of Antitrust, America, and MHVille

Both sides of the major party political aisle have allowed antitrust laws to languish, certainly since the 1990s.  As it is becoming obvious to both the left and the right, there are increasing calls to act in a way that will benefit the economy, jobs, and ultimately the vast majority of the people. ICYMI, or need a refresher, a useful overview was provided in the article linked below.

New York Times-David Leonhardt-“The Monopolization of America,” Manufactured Housing Slant

 

President Trump’s White House let it be know that an executive order on antitrust was drafted last year. His campaign manager has also talked about the threat posed by big tech. See more on that, in the related reports, below the bylines, notices, and offers.

While POTUS Trump has not yet acted, in fairness, it was only recently that the Mueller report came out, which lifted the cloud of baseless ‘Russian collusion’ that acted as a drag on his presidency, especially during his first year in office. It now remains to be seen what he will do with the remaining two years of what he hopes will be his first of two terms at the helm in D.C.

Given the significant extent to which consolidation has been impacting manufactured housing independents and manufactured home community residents in recent years, the interest in this issue is and should be high among industry professionals.

See the related reports, which includes the ‘November Rain’ address by the Trump DOJ’s top antitrust watch dog, further below.

It is difficult to imagine how an investor or professional in manufactured housing can begin to properly grasp the market without having a firm handle on the trends toward monopolization.  That means one must also understand what are the root causes of that trend.  The related reports reveal that it is an issue that spans the left-right divide.  There is oddly no one else in manufactured housing trade media that focuses on this issue, perhaps because they are de facto mouthpieces for the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis?

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“Lead, Follow … Or Get Out of The Way”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Berkshire Chairman Warren Buffett Announces Support for 2020 Hopeful, Behind the Curtain

February 26th, 2019 Comments off

 

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In an interview with CNBC’s Becky Quick, Berkshire Hathaway’s Chairman and CEO Warren Buffett says he would support Michael Bloomberg for president,” says CNBC’s YouTube page.

 

Buffett says he thinks [Michael] Bloomberg would be a good president because he knows how to run things and he understand people and the markets. Buffett also addresses where he falls on the political ideological spectrum and how his views have changed over the years,” per CNBC.

Berkshire Hathaway Chairman Buffett, per reports, has been ‘briefed’ about MHProNews tracking of his comments.  If so, that may explain why his comments about Clayton Homes and their related lending units in his 2018 comments and their annual report were muted.

With that same point in mind, it should be noted that Buffett – who has touted his Democratic credentials, in this video interview begins by making his approach seem more bipartisan.  Not so, per federal donations MHProNews reported last year during the run-up to 2018. Those federal disclosures reflected that 100 percent of his giving went to Democrats.  The graphic below, a collage from MarketWatch, summarized that reveal.

 

WarrenBuffettMarketWatchGivingIn2018CampaignDemocrats

 

Can you hear a Berkshire spokesperson spelling, disingenuous spin?

That’s not to say that he’s never given to Republicans.  It is to reflect that recently, per known facts, that he’s been even more Democratic backing than in other years. Deeper into this interview, he says as much.

In Buffett’s video about the already hot-and-heavy 2020 campaign, he said that he’d support fellow billionaire, and equally leftist pro-Democratic hopeful, Michael Bloomberg.

 

 

Buffett’s analysis on Starbuck’s billionaire Howard Schultz in this video is an interesting one. It is indeed logically more likely that, should Schultz run as an independent, that he would pull more votes from Democrats than from Republicans.  At the same time, if Democrats nominate a far left candidate, would Schultz later proven helpful to his favored party by staking out a more moderate position for the future?

The so-called “Oracle of Omaha” said he hopes no third party candidate runs, because they could “thwart the will of the people.”

Buffett has consistently opposed candidate Donald J. Trump during the 2016 campaign – and by various accounts – including quotes from Buffett himself, was dismissive of Mr. Trump in business during the years prior to his successful 2016 campaign.  See related reports below the byline, offers, and notices for more.

 

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The Democrats are not the same party that they used to be. Neither are the Republicans. Democrats have tilted socialist, and many say so openly.

 

Links to his annual letter and the Berkshire Hathaway annual reports – including the details on Clayton Homes and their related lending – are found below the bylines.

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SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

 

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Prefab and Modular Front and Center in Solving Housing Crisis

January 30th, 2017 Comments off
PrefabFrontandCenterinSolvingHousingCrisiscredit-PlymouthHerald-Inside-A-Modular-In-Nottingham-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Plymouth Herald.

As populations around the world continue to grow, a recurring theme is the need for housing.

More directly, many nations have declared a “housing crisis” and are looking for solutions.

One of the nations where the need is most pronounced is the U.K., where a report by Cast CEO Mark Farmer entitled; “The Farmer Review of the U.K. Construction Model” cited that labor shortages mean that new homes cannot be built fast enough, and studies commissioned by the U.K. Government have determined that the country will need an additional one million homes by 2020.

Tim Western of property giant JLL believes that modular and prefab is the solution.

There is likely to be a seismic shift in how and where we live and work by 2030,” said Western.

Homes manufactured like cars, in other words off-site in a factory, with the opportunity to pick and choose what goes into a basic structure, will bring ‘car quality’ to the market.

The entire story is on MHLivingNews, linked here. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

 

“Flat-Pack” Modular Homes Proposed to Help Solve Housing Crisis

December 9th, 2016 Comments off
FlatPackModularHomestoHelpSolveHousingCrisiscreditUKMirror-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

The urban bungalow. Credit: UK Mirror.

Not unlike the U.S., the United Kingdom is the midst of a housing crisis, due in part to rising housing costs and lack of skilled construction workers. Willerby Innovations believes they have the answer.

The firm is touting their sustainable modular home, known as the “urban bungalow,” as completely constructed in the factory and can be built in a day for about £60,000 ($75,432 USD).

The urban bungalow can help the government hit its targets while providing jobs locally,” said Phil Parks, lead commercial manager at Willerby Innovations.

The latest government initiatives continue to focus heavily on long-term goals including its ambitious target to build one million new homes by 2020. But even with initiatives in place to help housing associations and developers build more homes, it still doesn’t address today’s pressure on local authorities to meet the immediate social needs. Action needs to be taken now.

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Credit: Willerby Innovations.

According to the UK Mirror, there are more than 72,000 families living in temporary accommodation, including disabled or elderly residents struggling to live in high-rise buildings, with their caregivers forced into bed and breakfast accommodations.

There are thousands of people at risk of homelessness in the UK with this predicated to rise sharply creating a growing demand for housing from the elderly, the vulnerable and the temporary homeless,” said Parks.

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Inside of the urban bungalow. The design is similar in some ways to single sectional manufactured homes. Credit: UK Mirror.

The homes come with the option of furniture already included, have a large kitchen, living and dining room as well as a family-sized bathroom and are built to last 60 years.

The Daily Business News has covered the U.K. housing crisis, and potential solutions extensively, including the Farmer Review, which called prefab housing the “true way forward.” That story is linked here. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.