Archive for profit

"Everybody wants a little piece of that gay money."

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money gay weddings marriage equality

Marriage equality.

Marriage.

Equality.

Both of those words are as beautiful as they are meaningful. And now they're becoming lucrative, at least for states, businesses, and enterprising people that support them.

Lisa Phillian is one of those people. She is a professional in Southern California's wedding industry, and has been since before it became legal for every consenting adult to marry the one he or she loves.

Via the Los Angeles Times:

"Everybody wants a little piece of that gay money," said Phillian, who has offices in Rosemead and Palm Springs. "It's going to really open up the wedding business." [...]

About 37,000 same-sex couples are expected to marry in California over the next three years, potentially generating $492 million in revenue for businesses, according to the Williams Institute, a think tank at UCLA School of Law that studies lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues.

The state could also get a $40-million infusion from wedding-related tax revenue over the next three years [...]

To market her services, Phillian lists herself on websites such as Equally Wed that target gay couples. Thousands of businesses, including jewelers, videographers and musicians, market themselves to same-sex couples on similar sites.

Phillian is now fielding as many as 25 calls a day from lesbian and gay couples planning to marry, compared with about three a week she used to get for commitment ceremonies.

Now here are some Fun Facts:

  • 86% of gay couples pay for the majority of the wedding themselves, compared with 40% of straight couples.
  • About 37% of same-sex couples walk down the aisle together. 74% of straight couples walk down the aisle with family members.
  • 40% of gay couples plan a more casual and less traditional wedding, as opposed to 16% of straight couples.

Good for relationships, check. Good for businesses, check. Good for California (and other states), check.

So what's the down side of marriage equality again? Oh yeah. There is none.

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Wisconsin cashes in on selling voter rolls

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Via nutsandolts.com

Via nutsandolts.com

This report makes me really uncomfortable whether or not collecting information is legal or commonplace or useful or whatever. It's not like we don't already know that voter info is gathered, dissected, and exploited, but Gov. Scott Walker's state (and others) making money off confidential details like, you know, home addresses pushes my already squeamish buttons.

Via the Post Crescent:

APPLETONComputer files kept in Madison with detailed information on Wisconsin’s 3.7 million registered voters now fuel a healthy revenue stream for the state.

State law allows the Government Accountability Board to sell the public information in bulk with a $12,500 price tag or in pieces to individual candidates looking to target specific voters in an election. Last year the state took in $269,000 by selling the data, a review by Post-Crescent Media has found. Since 2011, 585 individual sales led to $388,595 in revenue.

Some people get mad that we’re selling their information, but we’re required to do so by state law,” said Reid Magney, spokesman for the GAB. “We don’t sell birthdates and we don’t sell phone numbers or email addresses.”

Again, what is for sale are the voter's addresses and voter participation history, and that is information that campaigns can use to target specific areas.

Those who took advantage of the data sales were primarily political organizations, including the Republican National Committee, Democratic National Committee, and state parties. Equal opportunity privacy invasion for cash.

Who purchased Appleton data?

Post-Crescent Media requested a list of all voter data purchases between 2011 and this spring. Here is a list of who purchased Appleton-related data in that period. This does not include the 24 individuals who purchased statewide rolls.

Name Subject of purchase Amount paid Voters Date

Ed Baranowski,

Aldermanic district 5 $30 957* 3/18/13
Curt Konetzke Aldermanic district 3 $40 3,104 3/4/13
Kathy Plank Aldermanic district 7 $40 3,475 1/30/13
Mark Priddis Aldermanic district 3 $40 3,111 1/28/13
Pam Holdorf Aldermanic district 13 $30 1,016* 1/15/13
Tim Hanna City of Appleton $220 38,931 3/13/12
John Hill Aldermanic district 2 $40 2,759 3/13/12
Tom Goehler Aldermanic district 12 $40 2,540 2/28/12
John DeVantier Appleton school district $145 24,207 2/8/12
Dave Broker City of Appleton $190 33,012 2/6/12
Jeff Lutz Aldermanic district 4 $40 3,039 1/30/12
Tom Van Susteren Aldermanic ward 2 $35 1,522 1/12/12
Michael Smith Aldermanic district 10 $40 2,571 1/6/12

*active voters spring only

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VIDEO: United Auto Workers, 6 more organizations file ethics complaint against Mitt Romney

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In a previous post, "UAW Charges Romney With Profiteering From Auto Bailout," Greg Palast's report that Romney secretly made millions, and his biggest donors billions, off the taxpayer funded auto bailout got some attention.

Palast had written about how Mitt and “Ann, personally gained at least $15.3 million from the bailout—and a few of Romney’s most important Wall Street donors made more than $4 billion. Their gains, and the Romneys’, were astronomical—more than 3,000 percent on their investment.” And the UAW and others listened.

Bob King, President of the United Automobile Workers pointed out that Mitt Romney was busy writing op-eds opposing the Detroit auto rescue, but was even busier making money with his Delphi investor group “off the misfortunes of others.”

In the video below, you'll hear King's first hand account of how the UAW and Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics (CREW) “have filed a formal complaint with the US Office of Government Ethics in Washington stating that Gov. Romney improperly hid a profit of $15.3 million to $115.0 million in Ann Romney’s so-called ‘blind’ trust.”

Here is Ed Schultz interviewing him on last night's "The Ed Show":

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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UAW Charges Romney With Profiteering From Auto Bailout

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Greg Palast previously reported that Romney secretly made millions, and his biggest donors billions, off the taxpayer funded auto bailout. He wrote about how Mitt and “Ann, personally gained at least $15.3 million from the bailout—and a few of Romney’s most important Wall Street donors made more than $4 billion. Their gains, and the Romneys’, were astronomical—more than 3,000 percent on their investment.”

As Bob King, President of the United Automobile Workers pointed out, Mitt Romney was busy writing op-eds opposing the Detroit auto rescue, but was even busier making money with his Delphi investor group "off the misfortunes of others."

Greg Palast now has a follow-up at Truthout:

[Mitt Romney] has just learned that tomorrow afternoon (November 1) he will be charged by the United Automobile Workers (UAW) and other public interest groups with violating the federal ethics in government law by improperly concealing his multi-million dollar windfall from the auto industry bailout.

King said that the UAW and Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics (CREW) "have filed a formal complaint with the US Office of Government Ethics in Washington stating that Gov. Romney improperly hid a profit of $15.3 million to $115.0 million in Ann Romney's so-called 'blind' trust."

The UAW complaint calls for Romney to reveal exactly how much he made off Delphi -- and continues to make.  The Singer syndicate, once in control of Delphi, eliminated every single UAW job --25,000-- and moved almost all auto parts production to Mexico and China where Delphi now employs 25,000 auto parts workers.

More details here.

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