Let Me Guess: You Still Go To Movies and Pay Netfux?
The Market Ticker - Commentary on The Capital Markets
2017-11-03 15:05 by Karl Denninger
in Corruption , 365 references Ignore this thread
Let Me Guess: You Still Go To Movies and Pay Netfux?
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Oh really?

We now know that Kevin Spacey didn't just allegedly assault a boy (adolescent, and well under the age of consent) many years ago -- he was also very sexually aggressive recently including during most of the work for Netflix on "House of Cards".

In fact this isn't just harassment being alleged -- it includes assault.

What's additionally been alleged is that almost-literally everyone in the crew knew damn well this crap was going on.

So here's the problem: This sort of crap doesn't continue for that length of time over that many people without the parent company turning a blind eye to it -- at least.

This appears to be true for basically every other "Tinsel Town" company and production group as well.

If you're a Netflix subscriber you're paying so stars can sexually assault people.  Congratulations.  Make sure you pat yourself on the back each and every month as you fund these perverted, outrageous acts.

Go to the movies?  Same deal.

Rent a movie?  Same deal.

Have a PRIME subscription, which includes video streaming?  Same deal.

You want to know why this happens in an alleged "first world", "developed" nation?

It's because we the people won't demand that our government go after lawbreakers and those who allow and pay for toxic cultures like this, especially large corporations, and we continue to spend money with the firms that fund and either tacitly ignore -- at minimum -- these actions.

Why is Wells Fargo still in business?  Not only did they get caught signing up people for accounts they never requested (that's fraud and illegal) they also got caught signing people up for expensive, unwanted and unnecessary "force-placed" car insurance on auto loans which is also fraud and illegal.  I remind you that Wells also was prominently featured in the "liar loan" debacle in the mid-2000s that led to the housing crash.  Yet not one person has been indicted for any of it nor has the company been indicted.  Worse, Wells Fargo still has customers!

We all claim to be outraged about Weinstein but the fact is that his conduct goes back decades.  If you remember this isn't exactly new or limited to him either -- how about the Michael Jackson allegations?  Where was the prosecution of the corporate enablers of that little game, eh?  Have any of those awards been rescinded and "stars" removed?  Well yes, in that instance there was no "admission of guilt" but there were plenty of pay-offs just as with Weinstein and apparently in Weinstein's case those were "perfectly ok" under his contract, so long as he covered the company's expense in paying same!

That's ridiculously brazen, by the way, because you can't contract to do an illegal thing; any such contract is void.  You say there's no criminal charge in there eh?  How about conspiracy to violate women's civil rights by agreeing in advance to paper over any such violations with payoffs.

But.... statute of limitations.  That's exactly how the game is played and I understand it.  The fact remains that as consumers we hold the ultimate whip hand in this regard in that we cannot be compelled to fund these jackasses nor their advertisers.  But we do, and we do it on purpose.  We consent, in short.

Never mind that the statute of limitations doesn't start running until the conduct stops.  If you're engaged in a continuing pattern of conduct (say, by writing contracts shielding someone from responsibility) then there remains a conspiracy charge available right up until the Statute of Limitations runs beyond when the contract's term ends.

Go down the list.  Disney (major studio), Sony Pictures (ditto), Fox News (where do I start?) and more.  But then again how about all the health care firms?  Sherman Act?  What's that?  Robinson-Patman?  What's with that -- that law doesn't exist, nor does Sherman and Clayton, right?  Apparently not if you're a big corporation, despite the fact that you can google up "15 USC Chapter 1" and start reading.

How about US cellular carriers that explicitly blackball "enhanced services" on your phone if you don't buy it from them.  Tied sale tactics intended to reduce competition are illegal under US Anti-Trust law.  AT&T does this every day, as does Verizon.  Where are the prosecutions?

We can be outraged about Hillary and the DNC if we'd like, but I find it particularly amusing that Trump is pissed off about that, because it's one of the few instances where what they did isn't illegal!  You may not know this but Presidential primaries are called preference primaries.  That's right -- you're expressing a preference.  The party is under no general legal obligation to play fair or even honor the results!  If any such obligation exists it is only under the general laws related to fraud, but there's a problem with such a claim in that you have no cognizant financial injury from them screwing you, so yeah, you might win -- an award of $0.00.  That's worth it (not!)

Should we change those contests and stop calling them votes?  Probably, but does the word vote confer a binding obligation to follow the results?  Nope; there are myriad other examples where it does not.  Municipal referendum anyone?  Absent a specific statute requiring that the electorate's will be followed.... such a duty simply doesn't exist.

We live in a world where Spamazon can play monopolist games with cross-subsidization which the press recognizes daily as having the explicit and intended outcome of destroying competitors (and I remind you 15 USC Chapter 1 only requires the attempt to monopolize for it to be a felony; you need not succeed or involve other parties!) and yet there is not one peep out of the Department of Justice or the Federal Trade Commission, along with 50 state AG offices.  Zero!  In fact the states are falling all over themselves to hand billions in incentives to the company instead.  Who loses from this?  You do, both in a higher tax rate charged to you (to give to them) and in the lost jobs and economic damage as, in the words of CNBC every single day, some other firm gets "Amazoned."

At the same time you have a medical system that operates as a raw extortion racket, producing "bills" that are explicit threats to charge you 300, 400, 500 or even 1,000% more for some form of medical care if you don't buy some particular "insurance" policy.

That's exactly what the Mob does when they come around and collect protection money: "Gee, that's a very nice business you have there.  It would be a shame if something happened to it."  CHA-CHING!  This conduct costs every American family a middle-class house payment (about $1,100) each and every month!

This is just about "some" businesses, right?  Well, no, it's all over the government too.  Guess what -- there are now allegations that essentially the entire Illinois State Government operates on sexual harassment along with paid sex for access.  

Don't live in Illinois, you say?  How about Florida Same deal here, it appears.  Anyone want odds on the other 48?

So cry me a river, America, until the day comes that you start with the several trillion dollars stolen from you every single year in the medical scam along with the "big company" scams and schemes that extract even more from you through various anti-competitive and declared illegal acts.

Never mind that there should be nobody left to go to the movies, Netfux should immediately lose 95% of its subscriber base (and be a zero), so should Amazon and Wells Fargo, for starters.  Oh, that's not an exhaustive list either; there are literally hundreds of other firms to which this should apply.

As long as you keep handing over money to these firms and individuals by intentionally and consensually buying "Prime" memberships, ordering products and services from these firms, keeping bank accounts at the big banks such as Wells and paying to see movies whether on Netfux or otherwise, never mind consenting to the medical scam by buying bogus "health insurance" and allowing politicians to continue to force you into Obamacare's scheme it is clear that you simply don't give a damn, America -- and since you don't why should any of these individuals and companies stop screwing people at large, whether in the wallet or literally -- never mind the hosing going on in the government with not just your wallet but quite-literally in and up various persons' bodily cavities.

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User Info Let Me Guess: You Still Go To Movies and Pay Netfux? in forum [Market-Ticker]
Posts: 1378
Incept: 2007-08-26
A True American Patriot!
San Antonio de Bexar de runover with illegals, Texas
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If you take a close look at things, .gov has taken over most of the "rackets" that
the mob use to "own". Made Vegas legit and basically a 1099 generating machine. How about the lotto? Mob use to call it the "numbers racket". Between Congress exempting itself from laws and rules that "We" the people have to abide by as well using "fines paid for by shareholders" to .gov while nobody ever goes to prison there literally no end to the corruption. Will it end before we do?


Democracy is a conversation between 2 wolves & a sheep discussing what's for dinner. A Constitutional Republic is found when the sheep pulls out a gun & makes clear that his 2nd Amendment Right will be exercised should the wolves attempt to hold such a "vote."-KD 9-29-15
Posts: 59
Incept: 2008-10-09

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Actually, I don't. I generally wait for them to come out on video and rent. I do like Netflix because they air the shows without commercials. Been slowly working my way throuch 17 seasons of NCIS... We have significantly paired our our cable bill (except internet.) Most of the cable shows are annoying with the vapid, long, repeated commercials. I would REALLY like to have a better a-la-carte selection. I don't watch ESPN, and most of the channels are worthless. I do watch a few of the movies, as long as the commercials are short.
Posts: 29
Incept: 2016-04-15

4116 Libby Rd NE, Olympia WA 98506
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Yup, scams everywhere you look. I dropped several credit card companies over their crap practices and use a credit Union for my banking, plus I generally pay cash for everything. I've written my members of congress over the disgusting criminal conduct in banking. Got a form letter back. I spent time outside DOJ's offices in Seattle holding a picket sign about the banking fraud that goes un-prosecuted. I didn't even get noticed. I called an AUSA that I know and lobbied him to take on the banks and was told Obama wouldn't allow it. I think it would take a general strike to get our governments attention. We've tried voting against the establishment, but that doesn't work out either. I retired last Nov, and have said the hell with doing anything to generate taxable income until and unless I see the rule of law applied to the various fraudsters out there. I'm not going to help fund this sort of government until there is change. I also avoid doing things they can tax as much as possible as well. Screw it.
Posts: 6
Incept: 2013-04-17

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The last "new" movie I watched in a theater was "Amadeus". Great movie, too.

I rented a few (like, 3) VHS movies while I worked at U-Tote-Em, now Circle K, simply because I didn't have to pay a membership fee.

That covers all of my going to the movies and renting since, oh, 1986....

I do have Prime. Free shipping (sorta) and video on the Roku make it worth the price.

A good source of DVDs is the dump bin at the grocery store.... a tub full of RedBox or whatever discs at $5 each. Last time I looked it was $4. Sure, the movies are a couple of years old but if you haven't watched the movie, it's still a new movie.

Not interested in Netflix. Dropped DirecTv a few months ago after 18 years and we don't miss but a few channels. The extra $145 in the back each month is nice. Then again, we managed to live without those channels all of lives.... So, over the air gives ~35 channels, the Roku adds a lot more. All free after dropping $110 for an antenna and the Roku. More crap than we have time to watch.

Posts: 5305
Incept: 2009-03-19

Just North of Detroit
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No Netfix no Prime. It has been YEARS since I went to a local filming and paid big bucks to listen to people talk on their cell phones, smoke, and teens horseplay and shine a laser on the screen. I'm hard of hearing and there is no decent captioning to be had.
Most current films aren't worth watching. Looking at the DVDs by the TV we have Lilo and Stitch, The Fifth Element, a recent Star Wars from a garage sale I haven't watched and a complete collection of that British series "As Time goes By"
I still have some TAPES of A New Leaf - Dr. Strangelove - Dr. Zivargo and a couple others.
I admit I don't KNOW who most of the actors are in the films to know their personal lives and actions. I just don't follow 'celecbrity' at all. (Not in sports either.)
Posts: 45
Incept: 2013-04-08

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Well, personally, I don't possess a television set (haven't in years since leaving the parents' house after college) and have never paid for Netflix or anything similar. Growing up, my family never was big into sitting in front of the "boob tube" and I took it farther, eschewing it entirely. Thinking back, I seem to remember going to a movie theater last about 5 years ago (that was the first time in numerous years, too), trying to be nice and spend time with a friend, though I thoroughly disliked the experience. If the industry relied on me, there would be no industry.

The subliminal messages and various political/scientific propaganda throughout every aspect of many of the movies/shows/whatnot are enough to turn me away. Sitting there watching for long at all is torturous. All these revelations of which you mention, which I'm not surprised a bit by, are just icing on the cake as reasons for staying away in my book.

This kind of disreputable conduct, as well as many other high crimes, is not limited to the film industry, of course. I would say, sadly, that scamming others is the way of almost all big business anymore.

I do wish that I could drop out of the system nearly entirely, but I'm young without enough means to do so without going full John Galt. There's just not too much I could cut back on any more than I already do and stay a fixture of society at all. I content myself for now fighting back/withdrawing my consent and going "old-fashioned" in any small ways I can. It never feels like I'm doing enough, but at least I can say I'm attempting to fight the fight unlike most. Consent by inaction and not caring allows and promotes this kind of behavior, as you said.
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A True American Patriot!
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It's a different lifestyle for sure but I like it...

Winding it down.
Posts: 1053
Incept: 2010-03-10

Ventura County, California
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I know folks in the Hollywood industry, and its one of the most dirty and corrupt machines around. The common refrain is that getting work is all about who you know, pay, or screw. If this stuff with Weinstein sounds bad, consider that these are the industry's "elite". Just imagine how much worse it is at the lower levels, supporting cast, extras, stage crew, etc. LA is FLOODED with kids who come into town with stars in their eyes trying to break into the industry that the market for their labor is a notch higher than prostitution. Low level actors in many cases have to pay just to be considered... this is illegal, but they get around it by scams such as requiring that actors on a project are mandated to attend an "acting session" or class (which they pay for) before they are even considered for a role or job.

What I find most humorous is that all the folks I know who claim to be "in the industry" are generally mostly employed in their secondary jobs... waiters, baristas, insurance salesmen, 8 to 5 desk job temp work, etc. But, hey, I guess everyone has their own definition of "living the dream!"

"If you don't have borders... if you don't have laws... you don't have a country."
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Easy guys.

Firestick plus Kodi = No one makes money on movies, series, etc.

Less than 18k income = Silver Obamacare or $13.68 a month

Republic wireless = $15 a month cell phone. Works as a smartphone over wifi.

Paid for place in the Keys. I own the property. $115 a month HOA fee plus $100 a month property tax. Total cost per month (water, electric, sewer) is about $275.

No state income tax in Florida. Pay very little Federal. If the new tax plan passes, I won't pay any Federal.

Order most stuff I NEED (which is very little) online from a supplier outside of Florida so no sales tax. You can still use Amazon must must choose from suppliers outside of Florida.
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This is absolutely not a one party problem but I still find it particularly galling that this is so prevalent in traditional liberal places and institutions where those who publicly fight against this behavior dwell. Especially the media who use a global megaphone to blast their cognitive dissonance to all who will listen.
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TV is just another addiction. Nearly everything my husband watches contains violence and much of it against women. Why does anyone feel 'entertained' by that? I just feel like I need a long hot shower. No thanks.
When hubby is gone for several days, the tv is never turned on. Heaven.
Posts: 293
Incept: 2010-03-05

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$35 a month for Internet.
That delivers every movie/premium cable show I have time to watch.
There's a 1-day delay for most programs, but hey, I'm not in a hurry.
The Internet is required for other things and there would be a connection no matter what, so entertainment is essentially free.
Posts: 404
Incept: 2013-12-25

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Sandor wrote..
Order most stuff I NEED (which is very little) online from a supplier outside of Florida so no sales tax. You can still use Amazon must must choose from suppliers outside of Florida.

Saw a story today that South Dakota want the Supreme Court to rule (again) if they can force retailers to collect sales tax even without nexus. 35 states support the bid. https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/tax....

The support includes neighboring Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota and Wyoming. The other states are: Alabama, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington and Wisconsin.

It will be interesting to watch that one. If it gets approved, watch a bunch of small companies collapse since they can't afford to keep track of sales taxes for each state, county or city. Just the threat of arrest for screwing up tax collection would be chilling.

South Dakota, like Florida, doesn't have an income tax. They exist on sales and property taxes.

Village Idiot
Posts: 150417
Incept: 2007-06-26
A True American Patriot!
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The problem simply doesn't lie there. Quill remains the law, and probably will withstand the attempt to do otherwise.

The problem is the scam Amazon has run, which incidentally I thought of back in the 1990s and was told by counsel I'd probably go to prison if I tried it.

Specifically, set up a "separate" LLC that has some sort of physical facility in the "targeted" state. It sells nothing. You do, but the other "separate" firm performs some part of the logistics (e.g. warehousing your ****, etc.) You claim no Nexus. Legally, there isn't any with the company (yours) issuing the invoices. You of course run the company in the OTHER state; it's legally distinct, and you run it deliberately to make basically nothing, thereby being exposed to no income tax. Since it does not sell any personal property or services to consumers, it does not have to register for or report for sales tax purposes either. All the supplies it buys and consumes are done through ordinary channels (no tax exempt number used.) If you want to get dodgy THERE you can even order them from out-of-state suppliers, but that's inviting a use tax audit, so don't do that.

Yes, I thought of that one when we wanted to go into two other states when I ran MCSNet, both of which had pain-in-the-ass sales tax systems. I got the "dirty look" from the corporate lawyers -- the "oh you can try it, and the legal defense bill for that will be large and you will lose" look. smiley

Here's the problem: But for Amazon's logistics, which are in essentially EVERY state, none of these "third party" sellers would be selling anything on Amazon. Amazon takes your money, verifies the CVV on your card (in fact they HOLD your card data!) distributes the funds ex their commission, arranges shipping in many cases and in some even FULFILLS (physically HAS CUSTODY OF at some point) the merchandise IN SAID LLC'D WAREHOUSE FACILITY!

Yet these "third parties" all claim no Nexus. HORSE****! Amazon has Nexus and they're not a "mere web site" listing product for third parties -- they are in fact HANDLING AT LEAST THE PAYMENT HALF OF THE TRANSACTION STREAM, THE FRAUD PREVENTION ASPECT OF IT RELATED TO THE PAYMENTS AND IN MANY CASES THEY DO THE FULFILLMENT (and/or Return, if that comes into play) PART TOO!

That is Nexus!

eBAY arguably is not, since they DO NOT handle the payment flow. But, oops for them, PAYPAL DOES, therefore PAYPAL has Nexus and thus SO SHOULD ANYONE SELLING THAT USES PAYPAL, if PayPal has Nexus in a given state. If eBAY had their own FULFILLMENT services well, then they'd be on the hook too -- but they don't.

In short Amazon's argument for third-party sellers is full of holes big enough to drive a truck through and it's quite-arguably a CRIMINAL conspiracy to EVADE, not AVOID, taxes. There is utterly no way they shouldn't get horse****ed not only on a forward basis BUT ALL THE WAY BACK TO THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS by EVERY state that collects sales taxes, and in addition Jeff Bezos and the entire board should be in the dock on CRIMINAL tax evasion charges.

Winding it down.

Posts: 760
Incept: 2007-08-11

Emerald City
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Still have a used Blu-Ray player that had the seller's Netflix acct. info on it when I got it. Was able to watch the first two seasons of House of Cards before that info expired. 'Twas enough HoC for me. My free trial of Amazon Prime expired yesterday, after I had acquired some parts and tool for my car, plus some replacement heads for my electric toothbrush. Amazon had the best prices on this stuff, and if they took a loss, OK by me.

"The stock market isn't bullish, it's bull$hit." -- Alan King
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