Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Senator Dodd: What About the 57 Industries With Higher Profit Margins Than the Oil Industry?

When a high-ranking U.S. senator sounds more like Karl Marx than Adam Smith over the issue of energy prices, it must be an election year.

Democratic Sen. Chris Dodd, the chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, appeared on CNBC’s June 10 “Squawk Box” pushing government control of corporate profits. Dodd said he considered a company to be “doing very, very well” with profits above $8 or $10 per barrel of oil. He said he advocated a windfall profits tax, where Congress would determine what amount of profit is fair and what isn’t.

CNBC's Joe Kernan called the Connecticut senator on the idea, asking if he was going to apply the same strategy to other types of businesses. “Are you going to go across industries, across the board and decide what Congress thinks is a fair amount of profit and drawing lines on what’s fair and what’s not for corporations? That’s not the way it’s done in this country, senator. It could never be done that way, could it?”

“Yes, it could be,” Dodd said. “In fact it’s been done that way in the past and particularly when you’re trying to get some relief for people out here when the economy is in a tailspin. We’re about to go into a recession here. This is really causing a tremendous dislocation, not only here, but around the world.”

MP: If Senator Dodd is concerned about industries making "windfall profits," he might want to start by investigating the 57 industries with profit margins HIGHER than the oil industry (see list above, click to enlarge, profit margin
data available here).


At 6/10/2008 11:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

CEO death pay might be considered a windfall for the heirs...

Eugene Isenberg, the 78-year-old chief executive of Nabors Industries Ltd. If Mr. Isenberg died tomorrow, Nabors would owe his estate a "severance" payment of at least $263.6 million, company filings show. That's more than the first-quarter earnings at the Houston oil-service company.

At 6/11/2008 12:33 AM, Blogger das Kapitalist said...

This blog is so awesome. Another home run. That Dodd is a dangerous tool.

At 6/11/2008 12:34 AM, Blogger das Kapitalist said...

Why don't we try that approach to companies with political connections on the left - like Google and Apple. They have some sweet margins as well.

At 6/11/2008 6:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well if were are about windfall fairness, the list should include those making extra high returns relative to the effort and investment would include:
Football Players, basket ball, Actors, Goverment officals and their familes earning 200K a year or more.

Do you need more than to live.. I believe the extra above the 200K is a windfall because they were lucky enough to born with skills or because they worked to earn it while others chose not to pursue the money enriching course.

Windfall profits is very arbitrary. Most invest time and resources to earn the greatest amount. I don't belive it is a windfall that companies or people plan, RISK, work, excute, and take advantage of situtations to better themselves and thier lot in life.

At 6/11/2008 6:58 AM, Blogger AtlanticSoutherner said...

An economic professor would give Sen. Dodd an 'F' while a political science professor would give Sen. Dodd an A+. There are two givens with voters they like being told they get money (ie stimulus packages) and they like to hear Big Oil is hosed. I hope this is just political cannon fodder or we might have to get McCarthy to comeback up to the hill to point some fingers. Maybe the Democrats have finally realized they have to play politics to win an election.

At 6/11/2008 8:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any politician of a country $9 trillion in debt should not be telling oil companies how to run their profitable business. If they are really that concerned about gasoline prices, they should propose a law removing all federal, state, and local taxes from the retail purchase of gasoline (and diesel fuel, too!). Anything less is just pandering to the embittered public.

At 6/11/2008 8:34 AM, Blogger OBloodyHell said...

> Senator Dodd: What About the 57 Industries With Higher Profit Margins Than the Oil Industry?


Don't give these morons any new ideas. The ones they have are stupid enough already.

At 6/11/2008 9:14 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The learned senator makes an excellent prescription for a country that is in his words "on the virge of a recession" just tax the hell out of industries that are keeping their heads above water.

My counter proposal is a tax for senators who fail to balance the budget or perhaps a tax on supporters of earmarks. Taxes on elected representatives should be used to create incentives to improve fidicuary responsibility and transparency for the benefit of the shareholders, American citizens.

The political purpose of Senator Dodd's subterfuge is to distract voters from the real issue which is the utterly abysmal performance by both parties. Time we started electing more economists and fewer lawyers.

Are you free, Prof. Perry?

At 6/11/2008 9:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Time we started electing more economists and fewer lawyers."

How? People who tell people the truth do not get elected. To get a message across nowadays you have to post it on Britney Spears' or Lindsay Lohan's inner thigh and hope they do a lot of flashing.

At 6/11/2008 11:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What would Senator Dodd's excess profits be?

At 6/11/2008 11:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hear Dodd wants to tax excess profits on tomatoes.

At 6/11/2008 7:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Why don't we try that approach to companies with political connections on the left - like Google and Apple. They have some sweet margins as well."

Google Profit Margin: 24.89%
Apple Profit Margin: 15.13%
Exxon Profit Margin: 10.85%


At 6/13/2008 11:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Insurance Broker = 16%. Huh...how is that figured?

At 6/14/2008 10:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How do we calculate the profits of the trial lawyer industry? At one-third of the recovery in most cases should we treat that at 33% profit (although I know they have business operation costs such as copies, travel, court reporters, fees, etc., many of those costs are actually covered and reimbursed BEFORE the one third contingency fee is calculated)? Will the Dems go after THAT industry?

At 6/22/2008 8:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's freaking hopless.

At 6/22/2008 2:16 PM, Blogger ned said...

Well, you can't spell demagogue without DEM.

ANY money most of these idiots in Congress gets paid constitutes a "windfall," if you ask me.

At 6/23/2008 11:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for putting this up, it's about time this angle started being mentioned more. Not that Government should seize any profits, but what are 'excessive profits' anyways? Certainly not the less than 10% the Oil companies made. Obama's personal profits on his book are probably at least 99%.

These Leftist Pols are dangerous.
absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
profit is EVIL

try to make less money
so government won't steal it

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
keep people all worked up

about global warming
despite inconvenient facts

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
NO MORE oil for you

rarely may you drill for it
limit refining of it

Will Biofuel Madness Starve Millions?
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Help Halt Terrorism Today!



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