Apple, Alphabet (parent of Google) and Facebook generated $333 billion of revenue combined last year with 205,000 employees worldwide. In 1993, three of the most successful, technologically oriented companies based in the Northeast — Kodak, IBM and AT&T — needed more than three times as many employees, 675,000, to generate 27 percent less in inflation-adjusted revenue.
over the last two decades, ISDS has morphed...into a powerful tool that corporations brandish ever more frequently, often against broad public policies that they claim crimp profits. Because the system is so secretive, it is not possible to know the total number of ISDS cases, but lawyers in the field say it is skyrocketing. Indeed, of the almost 700 publicly known cases across the last half century, more than a tenth were filed just last year.
In 2016, the corporate PACs associated with Microsoft, Facebook, Google and Amazon broke ranks with the traditional allegiance of the broad tech sector to the Democratic Party. All four donated more money to Republican Congressional candidates than they did to their Democratic opponents ... $2.1 million went to Republicans, and $1.5 million went to Democrats. These PACs did not contribute to presidential candidates.
George W. Bush’s first cabinet may have been the high-water mark of the corporate network’s influence ... the Bush cabinet was directly tied to 21 corporations, two degrees from another 228 and three degrees of separation from over 1,100 companies listed on Nasdaq or the New York Stock Exchange. No administration in history had as many direct personal contacts with corporate America ... executives at companies linked together by shared directors tended to donate to the same political candidates.
investor-state dispute settlement, or ISDS...was originally devised as a forum in which to resolve conflicts between countries and the foreign companies that do business within their borders. But the system puts countries at a striking disadvantage. Only companies can bring suit. A country can only defend itself; it cannot sue a company ... Often, countries are obligated to obey ISDS judgments as if they came from their own highest courts. And there is no meaningful appeal.
The Corrections Corporation of America launched the era of private prisons in 1983, when it opened a immigration detention center in an former motel in Houston, Texas. Today the Nashville-based company houses more than 66,000 inmates, making it the country's second-largest private prison company. In 2015, it reported $1.9 billion in revenue and made more than $221 million in net income—more than $3,300 for each prisoner in its care.
Walmart ... is massive. With $482 billion in revenue, it sells more than Apple, Amazon and Microsoft put together, according to Fortune’s annual ranking of companies by revenue, released yesterday (June 6). It’s bigger than the No. 2 company, Exxon Mobil, and No. 3, Apple, combined ... Walmart has more than 1.2 million workers in the US and 2.3 million globally. It’s the third largest employer in the world, trailing only the U.S. Department of Defense and the People’s Liberation Army of China
When it comes to calling the cops, Walmart is such an outlier compared with its competitors that experts criticized the corporate giant for shifting too much of its security burden onto taxpayers. Several local law enforcement officers also emphasized that all the hours spent at Walmart cut into how often they can patrol other neighborhoods and prevent other crimes ... Law enforcement logged nearly 16,800 calls in one year ... That’s two calls an hour, every hour, every day.
Almost 200 bills have been proposed this year in more than 30 states that would limit or prohibit protection against discrimination for LGBT individuals ... Five have passed into law; three have been vetoed; and 144 have died or been withdrawn ... In response, large companies that have already contributed millions of dollars to HRC and other advocacy groups to combat anti-LGBT discrimination have been taking steps to coordinate their lobbying activities
In North Carolina, more than 130 business, including Bank of America, signed on to a letter urging lawmakers to repeal the transgender law in the upcoming legislative session ... If businesses are prepared to act politically, there’s still a division between acting proactively, as in Tennessee, or after the fact, as is in North Carolina, where Bank of America is joining with HRC to try to force the repeal of the law, known as HB2.