DealBook Briefing: A $100 Billion Tax Break Plan (for the 1 Percent)

“Ethical Markets highlights this latest giveaway to the 1%, indicating that there is still much work needed to reform Wall Street and global finance.  Structural reforms needed to implement new models of more sustainable finance, even before FINTECH firms are able to assist in climate change!  This is also why we support the Public Banking Institute and reforming the rules of central banks, as detailed in my reviews of  “Collusion” by former Goldman Sachs managing director Nomi Prins and the Positive Money Institute’s “A Green Bank of England” for starters.

~Hazel Henderson, Editor“


 Evan Vucci/Associated Press

Trump considers a huge tax cut for the rich
The president is working out how to bypass Congress in order to give the rich a $100 billion tax break.
How would he do it? By taking inflation into account in calculating capital gains tax liabilities. Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury Secretary, said that his department was investigating whether it could do that without congressional approval.
More than 97 percent of the benefits of such a change would go to the top 10 percent of income-earners in the U.S., according to independent analyses, and nearly two-thirds to the top 0.1 percent.
Advocates say it would unleash a wave of asset sales, boosting the economy. But the Congressional Research Service said in a July report that on its own, such a proposal probably wouldn’t affect economic growth either way: “The additional debt incurred by indexing capital gains to inflation would most likely offset any stimulus that the smaller tax burden provided to the economy.”
Today’s DealBook Briefing was written by Andrew Ross Sorkin in New York, and Jamie Condliffe and Amie Tsang in London.
Les Moonves stays at CBS (for now)
The board of CBS decided to keep its chief executive in place, ending speculation that the sexual misconduct accusations against him would bring immediate consequences. There will be an investigation by an outside law firm.
Edmund Lee of the NYT was surprised:
The lack of action by CBS was striking at a time when some media companies have swiftly removed prominent employees who were accused of misconduct. CBS fired the anchor Charlie Rose a day after allegations were made against him, and NBC acted quickly to fire Matt Lauer of “Today” after he, too, was accused of inappropriate behavior and sexual harassment.
The CBS board is opening itself up to criticism, and many commentators think that Mr. Moonves will ultimately lose his position. At the very least, he has questions to answer. Among them: What was he thinking?
More #MeToo news: High-flying lawyers can reportedly switch jobs with ease after being accused of sexual harassment.
Senator Mark Warner of Virginia, center.

Senator Mark Warner of Virginia, center. Tom Brenner/The New York Times

How to fix social media? Lawmakers have ideas
On both sides of the Atlantic, lawmakers are jump-starting policy conversations about privacy, misinformation and big tech companies. The office of Senator Mark Warner of Virginia published a paper suggesting ways to curb the impact of the misuse of social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. In Britain, the House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee published a similar report.
The suggestions range from forcing tech firms to undergo digital audits, to making them liable for failing to take down illegal or damaging content and fake accounts. Mr. Warner’s office also pushed the idea of America adopting E.U.-style privacy rules.
All this is a long way from law — some of the ideas are technically challenging, others only roughly sketched, and most would take a while to enact. But it is a sign that the outrage expressed in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica data scandal is likely to have real policy consequences.
More tech problems: Facebook needs to work out how to target ads with less data. And the so-called FAANG stocks look headed for correction territory.