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The Morning Grumpy – 3/20/13

20 Mar

All the news, views, and filtered excellence fit to consume during your morning grumpy. Just links today.


1. Yahoo! plans to expand their datacenter operations in Lockport, potentially adding 115 jobs. Of course, they want additional tax credits in order to do so, $2MM worth, actually.

The Yahoo incentives package also calls for the company to receive 7.2 megawatts of low-cost hydropower from the Power Authority, according to the Cuomo administration. The Power Authority’s board of trustees is expected to vote Thursday on that allocation.

And Yahoo would receive up to $2 million in Excelsior tax credits through Empire State Development over a 10-year period to advance the company’s expansion plans.

As a reminder, Jim Heaney did the math on the original incentives given to Yahoo! as they built out the datacenter and it was startling.

New York State would be spending roughly $1.35MM per job created or $90,000 per job, per year.

With such a massive incentive package, this development proposal should be paired with a regional planning strategy to attract other companies active in the datacenter vertical to help build an industry center and broaden our tax base. Sadly, that hasn’t happened.

When the Yahoo project was originally announced, I broke down how other regions plan for this industry and how regional benefits can be derived and it’s still relevant. Check it out.

2. On an illegally wiretapped recording, President Lyndon B. Johnson caught Richard Nixon prolonging the Vietnam War to win the 1968 presidential election; over 15,000 more Americans were killed in Vietnam.

3. Yesterday was the 10th anniversary of the start of the Iraq War. Here is a a timeline of how we were dragged into Iraq, lie by lie. Also, it’s important to look back onwhat we were told in the run-up to the war; that it would probably only cost between $50-60BN, and to look back on how complicit the media was in not thoroughly vetting the case for war. Oh, by the way, next time you want to blame our national debt on President Obama’s mythical “out-of-control spending“, remember this chart.


4. SXSW has been releasing tracks from the acts playing during the festival since 2005. This year, 7.39 gigs of music were released through a DRM- free torrent — that’s 1,210 tracks from as many different acts. The song of the day by Emily Bell was culled from this torrent, it’s an awesome collection of unsigned acts. Check it out.

5.  From 1987 to 2008, corporations paid an average of 22.5 percent in federal taxes. Since the recession, this has dropped to 10 percent — even though their profits have doubled in less than ten years.

General Electric: The  worst tax record over five years, with $81 billion in profits and a $3 billion refund.

Boeing: In addition to receiving a refund despite $21.5 billion in profits, the company ranked high in  job cuttingunderfunded pensions, and contractor misconduct.

I thought lower taxes on these corporations would mean more jobs?

6. Meanwhile…America’s infrastructure is in dire need of upgrading. This is a problem that needs to be fixed now rather than later.

Fact Of The Day: The World Health Organization classifies tanning beds as a Level 1 carcinogen, the same as plutonium and cigarettes.

Quote Of The Day: “Americans… still believe in an America where anything’s possible – they just don’t think their leaders do.” – Barack Obama

Video Of The Day: “The Known Universe” – Hans Zimmer

Song Of The Day: “Back To The Way I Was” – Emily Bell

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