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Your Tax Cuts at Work

Some folks just cannot resist the urge to debate current issues of the day...here's the place to satisfy your craving. BE FOREWARNED - if you are an intellectual lightweight, you might find it a bit rough in here. This place is kinda like a never-ending edition of the McLaughlin Group. (Whatever happened to Mort Zuckerman, anyway?)
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Turkeytop
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Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by Turkeytop » Tue May 22, 2018 8:38 pm

Harley-Davidson took its tax cut, closed a factory, and rewarded shareholders

The motorcycle maker in January told Kansas City workers it would close a plant there. Days later, it announced a nearly $700 million stock buyback plan.

In September 2017, House Speaker Paul Ryan traveled to a Harley-Davidson plant in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, to tout the Republican tax bill, which President Trump would sign later that year. “Tax reform can put American manufacturers and American companies like Harley-Davidson on a much better footing to compete in the global economy and keep jobs here in America,” Ryan told workers and company leaders.

Four months later and 500 miles away in Kansas City, Missouri, 800 workers at a Harley-Davidson factory were told they would lose their jobs when the plant closed its doors and shifted operations to a facility in York, Pennsylvania — a net loss of 350 jobs. Workers and union representatives say they didn’t see it coming.

Just days later, the company announced a dividend increase and a stock buyback plan to repurchase 15 million of its shares, valued at about $696 million.

It’s a pattern that’s played out over and over since the tax cuts passed — companies profit, shareholders reap the benefits, and workers get left out. Corporate stock buybacks hit a record $178 billion in the first three months of 2018; average hourly earnings for American workers are up 67 cents over the past year. Harley-Davidson is an American symbol, and President Trump has trotted it out as an example of business success. But as it’s getting its tax cut, it’s outsourcing jobs and paying shareholders.
The tax cuts aren’t saving jobs at Harley-Davidson

It wasn’t just Ryan who made promises to Harley-Davidson. Trump in February 2017 met with Harley-Davidson executives and union representatives at the White House. He thanked the company for building in America and predicted its operations would grow.

“I think you’re going to even expand — I know your business is now doing very well, and there’s a lot of spirit right now in the country that you weren’t having so much in the last number of months that you have right now,” Trump said. He added that impending changes to “taxing policies,” health care, tariffs, and trade would only make things better.

The tax cut, at least, came through. The Republican tax bill, which slashes the corporate tax rate to 21 percent from 35 percent, is giving Harley sizable tax savings this year. The company estimates its effective tax rate — the amount it pays — will be 23.5 percent to 25 percent this year, about 10 percentage points lower than it would have been without the tax bill.

That’s a significant savings: The company makes about $800 million to $1 billion in pre-tax profit, according to Seth Woolf, an analyst at North Coast Research.

Just over a month after Trump signed the tax cuts into law, the Kansas City closure was announced. Workers found out when they arrived at the plant that morning: They were kept in the hallway, informed that the factory would be shut, and sent home for the rest of the day without pay. The union had no advance warning, said Greg Tate, a staff representative for the United Steelworkers District 11, which represents about 30 percent of the Harley-Davidson plant’s workers. (Harley-Davidson and the two unions that represent most of its production employees last year terminated their 22-year partnership agreement.)

“We really never had any belief that they were going to shut the Kansas City facility down,” Tate said. The announcement was “the first anyone found out about it.”

The company will cut 800 jobs at the Kansas City plant when it closes by the fall of 2019 and says it expects to add 450 full-time, casual, and contractor positions in its York facility — a net loss of 350 jobs.

The median household income in York is much lower than in Kansas City, and Tate said that hiring a casual workforce there — temporary workers brought in to boost production during peak season — will be easier and cheaper for Harley.

“This is a decision we did not take lightly,” Harley said in a statement. “The Kansas City plant has been assembling Harley-Davidson motorcycles since 1997, and our employees will leave a great legacy of quality, price, and manufacturing leadership. We are grateful to them and the Kansas City community for their many years of support and their service to our dealers and our riders.”
Harley-Davidson is also expanding overseas

Meanwhile, Harley-Davidson is opening up a plant in Thailand, where it plans to start production later this year. (The company also owns and operates facilities in India and Brazil, and it is closing a facility in Australia.) The company says the Thailand plant isn’t meant to outsource jobs but to boost its international business and avoid tax and tariff burdens. Trump’s proposed steel tariffs could pose a threat to Harley and add an estimated $30 million to its costs, and the European Union has threatened to impose a tariff on the company’s motorcycles in retaliation.

Union leaders, however, have suggested that the Thailand plant opening and the Kansas City plant closing are tied together.

“Part of my job is being moved to York, but the other part is going to Bangkok,” Richard Pence, a machinist at the Kansas City plant, told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel earlier this month when in Washington as part of a meeting between House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and members of the Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, which represents about 70 percent of the Harley-Davidson workers being laid off.

The Kansas City plant closing will cost Harley up to $200 million through 2019, according to Bloomberg’s estimates, and should result in annual savings of $65 million to $75 million after 2020.

Tate, from the steelworkers union, suggested the tax savings Harley reaped from the GOP bill might have actually freed up the cash for it to go ahead with the US restructuring plan now. “They have the capital now to move Kansas City, to shut it down,” he said. “All of that money really came from the tax cut plan, so it kind of had the opposite effect of what it was supposed to do.”

Woolf, the analyst, said he wasn’t sure that was the case. “I think what this reflects is that they’re finally coming to grips with the fact that the US market is contracting,” he said. Harley-Davidson has been struggling in recent years — sales have declined as its core demographic, baby boomers, ages and as millennials shy away from big bikes. The decline has been particularly acute in the US: Harley-Davidson’s motorcycle sales declined 8.5 percent in the United States in 2017 and 3.9 percent abroad.
The tax cuts let Harley reward shareholders

Meanwhile, since the tax cut, the company is managing to reward shareholders. Just days after revealing the decision to shutter the Kansas City plant, the company announced a dividend increase and a stock buyback plan to repurchase 15 million of its shares, valued at about $696 million.

On a call discussing the company’s first-quarter results in April, chief financial officer John Olin indicated that shareholder primacy will continue. “Beyond what we invest in the business, we will return and continue to return all excess cash to our shareholders,” he said. The company this year shut the media out of its annual shareholders meeting.

Harley-Davidson is one of a string of companies to announce major share buybacks since the tax bill was passed in December. Apple in early May said it would buy back $100 billion of its shares. The tech conglomerate Cisco in February said it would put an additional $25 billion toward a stock buyback. Troubled megabank Wells Fargo in January announced about $22 billion in buybacks. Pepsi announced a $15 billion buyback, Amgen and AbbVie $10 billion, and Google’s parent company Alphabet $8.6 billion.

Harley-Davidson isn’t the only company to shutter a US plant since the tax cuts were passed in December. The same day Kansas City workers found out their plant was closing, about 900 workers at an Electrolux plant in St. Cloud, Minnesota, found out the facility they were working in would be shutting down too. The Swedish home appliance company will consolidate its freezer production in South Carolina, where Joe Baratta, a representative for International Association of Machinists (IAM) Local 623, told me starting wages are lower.

He described a recent trip to Home Depot. “I see products that we were building here last year that say ‘Made in China’ with the Frigidaire name on it, they’re already in stores,” he said. “It’s a tough pill to swallow to go into every store in town looking at a product and saying, ‘There’s 150 jobs we lost. There’s another 200 jobs we lost.’”

Since Harley-Davidson announced its Kansas City plant closure in January, Trump — who made a big deal of saving jobs at a Carrier plant in Indiana in 2016 — hasn’t had anything to say about it, even when asked. IAM President Robert Martinez Jr. sent a letter to the White House asking him to save the Kansas City facility in March.

“For decades, hard-working Machinists Union members have devoted their lives to making high-quality, American-made products for Harley,” he wrote, later adding, “America’s working men and women deserve better than being thrown out onto the street. Our nation deserves better.”

An IAM spokesperson said Martinez met with White House trade adviser Peter Navarro on April 11 about the Harley closure, and he promised to follow up with the company’s CEO. The union had not received an official response from the president.
https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics ... ty-factory
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906XJ
Posts: 994
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2017 5:19 am

Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by 906XJ » Tue May 22, 2018 9:07 pm

This has nothing to do with tax cuts and everything to do with HD management being awful cunts.

If it weren't for the biker renaissance provided by baby boomers with more money than brains, that wreck of a company would have gone under years ago.

Did I ever mention how much I hate Harley Davidson and the fashion posers that run around in their branded clothing?



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Turkeytop
Posts: 3730
Joined: Mon Aug 16, 2010 9:27 pm

Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by Turkeytop » Tue May 22, 2018 9:20 pm

906XJ wrote:
Tue May 22, 2018 9:07 pm
.

Did I ever mention how much I hate Harley Davidson and the fashion posers that run around in their branded clothing?
Wow. You and I are in agreement on something. Probably a lot of people sporting the Harley branded clothing don't even own a bike. They're just biker wanna-bes.

Something I've always wondered about is how come Honda and Yamaha can make a nice quiet machine, but Harley hasn't been able to figure it out.



906XJ
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by 906XJ » Tue May 22, 2018 9:45 pm

They could if they wanted to, but that isn't what the HD customer wants.

Go to any HD dealership and look around... What do you see? You see a bunch of urban dweebs... many of them with a Wife or Girlfriend nagging them about the two up seat option, blah blah blah. These dweebs and their resting bitch face clams live meaningless and boring lives Monday through Friday. On Saturday they want to strap on their Harley Owners Group leathers and drink a beer... maybe two... but they should really switch to water after that because like ya know the carbs and stuff. They need those loud pipes not because they know jack shit about internal combustion engines and the benefits of a proper exhaust, but rather so other folks will turn their heads and look at them in all their bullshit pageantry. I greet these pukes with ridicule and disdain.

You know what you don't see in a HD dealership? Bikers.



++++
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by ++++ » Tue May 22, 2018 9:57 pm

http://www.thedrive.com/opinion/12489/a ... ng-harleys Millenials are not buying them.

https://www.nasdaq.com/symbol/hog/stock-chart shows the stock.

Myself, they (in my opinion) seem to be living off of Easy Rider. The average driver looks like a throwback to the 1960s and most of the women seem fat. Sorry. Other companies evolve. They don't.

As a union retiree, and a damn proud member, keep closing plants and building overseas. Soon, nobody will have money to buy the overpriced crap!

Blame the worker, of course, but give the people at the top golden parachutes, and nice pay raises. Here's that:
http://insiders.morningstar.com/trading ... ture=en-US



906XJ
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Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2017 5:19 am

Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by 906XJ » Tue May 22, 2018 9:59 pm

Sorry, this really is a sore spot for me.

My Mom told me when I was a little shaver... if you can't kickstart your bike, you shouldn't own it.

I just can't abide these pudding belly chumps and their bastardization of the culture.



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Turkeytop
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by Turkeytop » Tue May 22, 2018 10:00 pm

As a union retiree, and a damn proud member,
Describes me exactly.



906XJ
Posts: 994
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2017 5:19 am

Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by 906XJ » Tue May 22, 2018 10:00 pm

++++ wrote:
Tue May 22, 2018 9:57 pm
http://www.thedrive.com/opinion/12489/a ... ng-harleys Millenials are not buying them.

https://www.nasdaq.com/symbol/hog/stock-chart shows the stock.

Myself, they (in my opinion) seem to be living off of Easy Rider. The average driver looks like a throwback to the 1960s and most of the women seem fat. Sorry. Other companies evolve. They don't.

As a union retiree, and a damn proud member, keep closing plants and building overseas. Soon, nobody will have money to buy the overpriced crap!

Blame the worker, of course, but give the people at the top golden parachutes, and nice pay raises. Here's that:
http://insiders.morningstar.com/trading ... ture=en-US
Yep... Expect the backlash from this to be swift and brutal for HD. This will not sit well.



NS8401
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by NS8401 » Wed May 23, 2018 12:10 am

906XJ wrote:
Tue May 22, 2018 9:07 pm
This has nothing to do with tax cuts and everything to do with HD management being awful cunts.

If it weren't for the biker renaissance provided by baby boomers with more money than brains, that wreck of a company would have gone under years ago.

Did I ever mention how much I hate Harley Davidson and the fashion posers that run around in their branded clothing?
The bonuses and stock buybacks are a majority of what the cuts have been used for. Hiring workers and such is pretty limited comparatively. Folks noticing a boost in pay is quite small... not exactly working as supposedly intended though it’s an outcome you could see from a mile away...



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Frank Booth
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by Frank Booth » Wed May 23, 2018 12:19 am

And the beat goes on... Corporate soullessness at it's finest, believe me I know a thing or 2 about that.


Don't be a good neighbor to her!!!

906XJ
Posts: 994
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2017 5:19 am

Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by 906XJ » Wed May 23, 2018 12:22 am

Again... this is a case of an individual company behaving badly. More draining the swamp and exposing the lizards for who and what they are.

Think about it... word of this will travel quickly... Harley Davidson, you know them, "Born In The USA", took their tax cut, distributed it to their managers, closed the KC plant and moved production to Riceville.

So here's what you do... You vote with your wallet. In this case it may mean no more "Born to ride" t-shirts for you. Don't worry, it will only sting for a little while, because they will either get the hint or they will perish as a moneymaker.

MAGA bitches.



906XJ
Posts: 994
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by 906XJ » Wed May 23, 2018 12:24 am

Frank Booth wrote:
Wed May 23, 2018 12:19 am
And the beat goes on... Corporate soullessness at it's finest, believe me I know a thing or 2 about that.
Yes Frank, that's it and that's all.



++++
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by ++++ » Wed May 23, 2018 8:27 am

""Think about it... word of this will travel quickly" I doubt this. People in NY or CA don't care about the plant closing in KC. "Better there than here."

Too, I believe people have short memories. It is nothing more than greed.

"Corporate soullessness at it's finest, believe me I know a thing or 2 about that." Here too, I saw people who put on the white shirt and forgot they were ever in the labor force! Their heads swell and their crap didn't stink. Happily, I saw some get turned on, get "lateral moves" or sit and look at a wall, demoralized for the rest of their life.

I was the "stupid laborer" and liked what I did, and with overtime, made more than they did! More than one said "you were smart. You stayed in the union."

Harley might be smart to see other motorcycle companies have a different corporate speak, feel, etc.

Never had, nor ever would have anything Harley. In a year or two, this will be interesting to look back upon.



NS8401
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by NS8401 » Wed May 23, 2018 10:06 am

906XJ wrote:
Wed May 23, 2018 12:22 am


Think about it... word of this will travel quickly... Harley Davidson, you know them, "Born In The USA", took their tax cut, distributed it to their managers, closed the KC plant and moved production to Riceville.

MAGA bitches.
So the fact that lots of companies are distributing their tax cut to their managers or buying back stock instead of stimulating the economy by giving a meaningful amount to their workers or investing in new plants and expanded capacity is MAGA? Ok then...



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Frank Booth
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by Frank Booth » Wed May 23, 2018 12:30 pm

I agree with the whole Harley Image thing. I see this a lot at my work. There's this one manager, that thinks he's this harley guy. Its pretty funny but its kind of sad.


Don't be a good neighbor to her!!!

906XJ
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Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2017 5:19 am

Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by 906XJ » Wed May 23, 2018 12:34 pm

That is a fantastic cherry pick NS. SG will be proud of you in your obtuseness.



NS8401
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Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 9:06 pm

Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by NS8401 » Wed May 23, 2018 10:16 pm

906XJ wrote:
Wed May 23, 2018 12:34 pm
That is a fantastic cherry pick NS. SG will be proud of you in your obtuseness.
So I’m obtuse for pointing out something that lots of people have observed with not just this tax cut but previous ones as well? Trickle down doesn’t work and it never did. Notice you are attacking me but not what I said. You’re not even trying to refute it.... you got nothin’...


Let me help... we are following in Japan’s footsteps economically... that’s very very bad...

https://www.politico.com/magazine/amp/s ... pan-218320



906XJ
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Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by 906XJ » Thu May 24, 2018 6:45 am

I was attacking exactly what you quoted. Taking part of my quote out of context changed the meaning of the statement as a whole. That's what a cherry pick is.

Again you are being obtuse.



NS8401
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Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 9:06 pm

Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by NS8401 » Thu May 24, 2018 9:34 am

906XJ wrote:
Thu May 24, 2018 6:45 am
I was attacking exactly what you quoted. Taking part of my quote out of context changed the meaning of the statement as a whole. That's what a cherry pick is.

Again you are being obtuse.
Quoted the wrong paragraph as it turns out:
Again... this is a case of an individual company behaving badly. More draining the swamp and exposing the lizards for who and what they are.
Then you said “MAGA Bitches” a bit farther down despite the fact that Harley is not doing something that is the exception... it’s more the rule with the sudden windfall from the cuts... so how is that MAGA? It’s exactly what you’d expect and what the Republicans knew would happen. MAGA is just a slogan it’s not an action at all. No shocker here. Are we to believe that the whole idea behind the cuts was to expose “corporate lizards” when they inevitably did this? Do you really think Trump gives a rats ass if a company like Harley (or the thousands of others doing the same) buys back stock and increases executive bonuses and dividends? I’m waiting for him to attack them for it but I suspect I’ll be waiting forever...

Why don’t you respond to some of the substance, you’ve given me enough cherries for one day... maybe even the well written Politico article if you’re really ambitious this delightful morning...



906XJ
Posts: 994
Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2017 5:19 am

Re: Your Tax Cuts at Work

Post by 906XJ » Thu May 24, 2018 2:01 pm

906XJ wrote:
Wed May 23, 2018 12:22 am
Again... this is a case of an individual company behaving badly. More draining the swamp and exposing the lizards for who and what they are.

Think about it... word of this will travel quickly... Harley Davidson, you know them, "Born In The USA", took their tax cut, distributed it to their managers, closed the KC plant and moved production to Riceville.

So here's what you do... You vote with your wallet. In this case it may mean no more "Born to ride" t-shirts for you. Don't worry, it will only sting for a little while, because they will either get the hint or they will perish as a moneymaker.

MAGA bitches.
Is anyone else having a hard time comprehending this statement as a whole?

I mean, I never once mentioned Trump... must be that TDS making NS see things that aren't there again.



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