Liberals Give Amazon The Boot

Grind for February 17th, 2019
“Art is science made clear.” – Wilson Mizner

So It Begins

The Headline

Bloomberg’s plan to defeat Trump in 2020

The Grind

Billionaire philanthropist and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg says he will invest at least $500 million of his own money to make sure Donald Trump is not re-elected in 2020.

The money is pocket change for Bloomberg, whose estimated net worth is $56.1 billion.

Last year, Bloomberg’s donations marked him as the second-biggest philanthropist in the country (his favorite causes include climate change and gun control).

In this case, Bloomberg will use $500 million to fund a “data-heavy” ad campaign “designed to operate as a shadow political party for the eventual Democratic nominee,” reports Politico.

Bloomberg is also considering launching his own bid, in which case the $500 million would be used to fund his campaign into the primary season. He is expected to make a final decision by the end of the month.

The Details

“Five hundred million is just an obscene amount of money,” says a Democratic consultant close to Bloomberg. “It’s crazy, enough to buy up all the TV ad inventory in the seven or eight states that really matter in a primary.”

To compare, Trump spent about $325 million funding his entire presidential campaign.

According to the consultant, Bloomberg’s top-notch political team “is going to do the infrastructure and logistical work to fill in the gaps for the state and national parties so that whoever the nominee is would inherit a state-of-the-art, fully functioning infrastructure.”

The team is said to be very familiar with the primary election calendar and the complexities associated with the DNC. They’re also aware of the stigma associated with white billionaire males and the potential problems associated with Bloomberg’s Republican past (he served his first two terms as NYC mayor as a Republican and his third as an Independent on the GOP ticket).

Nonetheless, polls suggest that up to 80% of Democratic primary voters view him favorably.

Change Of Plans

The Headline

Amazon cancels plans to build HQ2 in New York after local opposition

The Background

In November 2018, Amazon announced plans to build its second headquarters in areas of New York and Virginia.

The announcement marked the end of an international contest in which hundreds of cities vied for Amazon’s attention with incentives such as tax breaks, infrastructure improvements, and expedited construction.

Key factors in Amazon’s decision included:

— Immediate availability of office space

— Adequate recreation, education, and housing opportunities for employees and their families

— Site’s commitment to sustainability

New York City was chosen based on its offer of $3 billion in tax incentives as well as its commitments to improve transportation, schools, and sewer systems.

The News

Amazon this week cancelled plans to build in New York following months of fierce opposition from local politicians who opposed the city’s plan to give Amazon billions of dollars in tax incentives.

Foremost among them was State Senator Mike Gianaris, who was recently nominated for a state board position that would have allowed him to veto Amazon’s development plan.

Amazon’s plan for New York City “requires positive, collaborative relationships with state and local elected officials,” wrote Amazon in a blog post dated February 14th. “While polls show that 70% of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project we and many others envisioned in Long Island City.”

Amazon thanked New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio for their support and said it would not relaunch the HQ2 contest.

“We will proceed as planned in Northern Virginia and Nashville, and we will continue to hire and grow across our 17 corporate offices and tech hubs in the US and Canada,” wrote Amazon, adding that it would not abandon its 5,000 employees living in New York City.

Did you know… The first South Park episode was made with construction paper. It took 3 months to make.