Up for Debate: Return of large mergers

Friday, February 15, 2013 at 1:44am

Do you believe the recent announcements of two major corporate mergers, which could signal a trend back to such deals, are a good thing for business or a return to troublesome business practices?

Filed under: City Voices
Tagged: Up for Debate

193 Comments on this post:

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 11:04

There was that one guy in China.. born without a skeleton..

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 11:09

We are all travelers in the wilderness of this world, and the best we can find in our travels is an honest friend.”
― Robert Louis Stevenson

By: brrrrk on 2/15/13 at 11:10

BenDover said

"This whole tendency toward control... this inclination to build systems and procedures that affect everyone -- every day -- to avoid a once in a million exception. Even in business I've fought this utopian neurosis more than anything else."

Ever hear of the Triangle Shirtwaist fire? 146 people died in that fire because of unsafe factory conditions. Are you aware of how many people died in railroad accidents before the railroad companies cleaned up their scheduling issues? Or how many died in train accidents because of unsafe wooden passenger cars that "telescoped" on impact? Or the number of fingers lost to the use of "link and pin" couplers before railroads were forced to update to more modern knuckle couplers? There used to be an old saying that you could tell how long a yardman worked for the railroad based on the number of fingers he had missing (I'm a bit of a train geek). That once in a million exception you're talking about could be someones life.....

By: BenDover on 2/15/13 at 11:11

I don't agree with your premise that overall lack of regulation was the main reason for the bubble.

I think the rating agencies failed the consumers who relied upon them when measuring the security of those derivatives.

The bubble was more caused by interest rates being continually manipulated lower than market; and a sub-prime loan market exaggerated by a idealistic government backed/demanded home purchase policies including an implicit taxpayer guarantee of the debt.

Lots of businesses rode in that boat and made a lot of money; but it was government expanded CRA and quasi-government crony/lib-politician pay-back Fannie and Freddie that created it.

By: BenDover on 2/15/13 at 11:14

Just turn both sides into beer hats with a siphon tube loner.

The Doritos seem to be the technical hurdle with that thing.

By: BenDover on 2/15/13 at 11:21

Businesses, aside from tobacco, don't make a living by killing and maiming their customer base, brrrrk (and before you go off on it tobacco is a trade-off for the people who enjoy it just like big-macs). This is a continuous improvement in society regardless of the government stepping in to take a bow. It used to be common sense but now the utopian collective is so full of itself it can't get enough power over the individual.

I have not made the absolute argument. What we are discussing is where we go from here and in my mind there is quite enough regulation without Bloomberg banning big gulps and without Obama mandating the type of health care coverage we must buy.

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 11:25

Two recycled beer balls....(do they still make them?)...and some pvc tubing should do the trick.....a couple could go as a "dumbbell"?

Couple of hot bimbos in flesh-toned body stockings, with their blonde heads in those spheres, would certainly be a hit at the C&S Saloon....First Prize goes to the Dumbbell Girls.

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 11:28

Businesses, aside from tobacco, don't make a living by killing and maiming their customer base...except for the civilian firearms industry?

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 11:32

Proceed with caution Loner.. PC tubing contains carcinogens.
-Uncle Sam

By: BenDover on 2/15/13 at 11:32

I would say they provide necessary tool that allows the weak to defend against the strong with lethal force if necessary, loner; but I'm sure you disagree.

By: brrrrk on 2/15/13 at 11:37

Ben,

Once again, regulations and laws are the result of bad behavior. And as for your argument that businesses "don't make a living by killing and maiming their customer base", how many people in this country committed suicide when their pensions were cleaned out, or when they lost their house, or when their 401k was eviscerated? The actions that businesses take can have many consequences. And again, rather than complain about the laws, police your own and maybe the laws won't have to exist.

By: brrrrk on 2/15/13 at 11:42

BenDover said

"I would say they provide necessary tool that allows the weak to defend against the strong with lethal force if necessary, loner; but I'm sure you disagree."

So when it comes to firearms it's OK because it's the weak defending itself against the strong.... but if someone sues a company for an injury it's generally perceived as frivolous litigation?

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 11:48

A re-paste from a Burch board...

By: Loner on 2/8/13 at 1:32

My friends, I too had not intended to discuss this controversial subject at this particular time. However, I too want you to know that I do not shun controversy.

If, by "guns" you mean the infamous invention that has killed and maimed millions of innocent human beings; if you mean the Saturday-night-special used to kill a convenience store clerk; if you mean the assault rifle that wiped out a classroom of 1st graders in Newtown CT; if you mean the hand gun that killed a heroic school bus driver in Midland City AL, then certainly I am against guns.

If, by "guns" you mean a hunting rifle that puts meat on the table in Appalachia; if you mean a gun that is a beautifully crafted family heirloom; if you mean the effective personal weapon that has saved the lives and the virtue and property of countless would-be victims; if you mean the trustworthy, reliable tool for maintaining personal and national self-defense; if you mean the service revolver of a state trooper putting down a mad-dog mass murderer; then certainly I am for guns.

This is my stand. I will not retreat from it. I will not compromise.

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 11:48

brrrrk, your example is frivolous. Suing large companies, or professionals, is in itself a business.
One of the main factors of expensive healthcare.

By: BenDover on 2/15/13 at 11:50

You are returning to the fallacy that if the intention of the policy or policy maker is good then the policy is good, brrrrk.

We've traveled the last 4 years with 8%+ unemployment (12%+ if you count the shrinking workforce) and hve dumped $4Trillion in extra debt over trend on our grandchildren to no avail because Obama's intention was good but his means involving tax uncertainty, class warfare, a huge new entitlement, unprecedented stimulus and debt, and increased regulatory muscle-flexing (that spooked the investors and employers) has not resulted in job growth that even keeps up with new people entering the market-place.

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 11:55

Slack...only USDA, OSHA, USPHS & NSF-approved tubing, of course....the beer balls were certified for potable beverages, so they are probably safe....now, the adhesive or fasteners to unite the balls, would also have to be fully approved...this could decrease the added-value..or was it the value-added?

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 11:57

Loner.. to be safe, you might have Tommy Chong take a look.. can't be to careful.

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 12:00

Regulations my arse.. I'm doing it.. then I'm gonna do it again..

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 12:03

Ben wrote: "You are returning to the fallacy that if the intention of the policy or policy maker is good then the policy is good, brrrrk."

Nobody here has offered that if-then proposition, except you, Ben, as a strawman attributed to Brrrrk.... and to me.

Neither one of us has claimed that, if the intention of the policy or policy maker is good, then the policy is good. Some strawman of your own making may have made that ludicrous claim....but not us.

By: yogiman on 2/15/13 at 12:04

Well, BenDover,

I like your being a very, honest person than an ignorant usurper admirer that's on this site. I was raised to keep in mind two facts of life: You don't lie and you don't steal. If I had stole anything in my childhood I believe I would have gotten less punishment from the court than I would from my parents.

My dad was a helluva whupper and Momma wasn't far behind.

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 12:08

As a convicted felon, Chong cannot legally own or have anything to do with cylindrical plastic tubing...it's in his parole agreement, Slack...Chong cannot have cylindrical plastic tubing in his toilet paper holders in his home....they made an exception for his sewerage...PVC is OK there...but only there.

By: brrrrk on 2/15/13 at 12:11

slacker said

"brrrrk, your example is frivolous. Suing large companies, or professionals, is in itself a business. One of the main factors of expensive healthcare."

And the alternative is.................

Funny thing about lawyers, everyone hates them.... until they need one.

By: brrrrk on 2/15/13 at 12:13

Loner said

"As a convicted felon, Chong cannot legally own or have anything to do with cylindrical plastic tubing...it's in his parole agreement, Slack...Chong cannot have cylindrical plastic tubing in his toilet paper holders in his home....they made an exception for his sewerage...PVC is OK there...but only there."

Just give me an empty soda can and some aluminum foil..... :-)

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 12:13

Yogi confesses: My dad was a helluva whupper and Momma wasn't far behind.

Enough about your mom's behind....we understand that your cerebral cortex is located in your gluteus maximus....and that you suffered brain damage from the near-daily whuppings...but stories about your momma's behind? Puhleeeeze!

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 12:15

Loner, Chong.. is the perfect example.. of Ben's law enforcement run amok rant.

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 12:16

Brrrrk...the paper roll at the end of the toilet paper roll can also be used in an emergency.

By: gdiafante on 2/15/13 at 12:16

Ben, we have the rule of law in this country. If you don't abide by the law, you're being dishonest. Period.

And another dishonesty, your diatribe of how the government coerced business to issue subprimes...poor big business...they had their arm twisted...they didn't want to...they wanted to go by the book...but big bad government made them...lol

Jeez....

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 12:17

The corn cob pipe was invented in some rural outhouse?

By: brrrrk on 2/15/13 at 12:18

slacker said

"Loner, Chong.. is the perfect example.. of Ben's law enforcement run amok rant."

Granted it's stupid, but it's really not an example of what Ben is ranting about because as I understand it, it only affects Tommy Chong.

By: yogiman on 2/15/13 at 12:19

brrrrk,

I believe if you go back in history you will find out the 2nd amendment was passed for the citizens to protect themselves from the government. And that amendment is well worth having today with the "guvmunt" in their [takeover] mood.

You should have been at the meeting I went to this morning. It was a normal "get together" meeting with our State Senator and Representative. There was about 50 people there and everyone of them have concerns about Obama's constitutional eligibility. You should, too, unless you're ready to be taken over by a dictator.

Have you read Barry's latest Executive Order on gun control? Read it, you might not like it; 13524.

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 12:20

I agree, Slack, Chong was targeted...by Ben Dover's idol....George W. Bush....in this case, Ben seems to be a hypocrite.

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 12:22

This is disturbing:

You should have been at the meeting I went to this morning. It was a normal "get together" meeting with our State Senator and Representative. There was about 50 people there and everyone of them have concerns about Obama's constitutional eligibility. You should, too, unless you're ready to be taken over by a dictator.

Fifty ticking time bombs and some politicians in the same room....oy!

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 12:23

Ben can't seem to get a break today.. I might as well pile on.
''Ben stop driving drunks home!''

By: gdiafante on 2/15/13 at 12:24

It was a Village Idiot convention, Loner.

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 12:26

Who said the following, Jeff Davis in 1861, or a Tea-bagger in Tennessee in 2013?

"I believe if you go back in history you will find out the 2nd amendment was passed for the citizens to protect themselves from the government."

By: brrrrk on 2/15/13 at 12:27

gdiafante said

"Ben, we have the rule of law in this country. If you don't abide by the law, you're being dishonest. Period.

And another dishonesty, your diatribe of how the government coerced business to issue subprimes...poor big business...they had their arm twisted...they didn't want to...they wanted to go by the book...but big bad government made them...lol"

I agree. Chances are the law Ben might be referring to is the law that banned the practice of red lining (or an extension of it). And in that law it specifically states that the mortgage companies were still expected to loan within good business practices.... in other words, the mortgage could still be denied if the mortgage company thought the person requesting the mortgage was legitimately a bad risk. There was nothing that forced the mortgage company to loan to risky individuals.

By: Captain Nemo on 2/15/13 at 12:30

I don't think saw much of his ma behind. He was locked in the closet too many times.

By: brrrrk on 2/15/13 at 12:31

yogiman said

"You should have been at the meeting I went to this morning."

Sorry, I'm not into shuffle board or talking about bowel movements.... that's for the alter kockers

By: gdiafante on 2/15/13 at 12:31

It seems to me the government shouldn't have changed the law, businesses shouldn't have ignored sound lending practices and people shouldn't have bought homes they couldn't afford (though a LOT of the problem was the "flipping" craze). It was really a perfect storm.

And I don't blame one entity, I blame all.

By: Captain Nemo on 2/15/13 at 12:31

Remember yogi, I am smarter than you. That is your words.

By: Loner on 2/15/13 at 12:32

Poor Ben.....in my humble opinion...brother Ben needs to chill....and stay out of any houses of worship for a few months....and turn off Limbaugh, FOX News, Hannity, Savage et al....and tune out the Christian media too.....go on a media fast, Ben...I do, every Summer...it restores perspective....just sayin'....

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 12:34

Didn't Fannie Mae & Fannie Mac provide a market for those risky loans.. brrrrk?

By: gdiafante on 2/15/13 at 12:39

Yes they did slack. But they weren't alone. Like I said, it wasn't one, it was all.

By: Captain Nemo on 2/15/13 at 12:41

The asteroid is being seen on NASA web site.

yogi is being watched by his alien puppeteers.

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 12:42

Petr Rose is warming up in the batters box...

By: Captain Nemo on 2/15/13 at 12:44

This thing is closer to earth than some of the weather satellites.

yogi is now in his closet waiting for the all clear.

Lets don't tell him. ;-)

By: gdiafante on 2/15/13 at 12:45

And I think I made it clear in my 12:31 post that the government isn't blameless here, but it isn't the sole cause either. This thing was a bubble, and it was widespread and everyone was doing it because they could.

There's a really interesting "new rule" by Bill Maher from 2004 or 2005 where he predicted the bubble burst. I think California was one of the leaders of overpriced real estate but it's an interesting read and he nailed it.

By: gdiafante on 2/15/13 at 12:45

Damn italianizing...

By: Captain Nemo on 2/15/13 at 12:47

Rasputin is standing on the corner with sign in hand ask for money to make the big rock go away.

By: slacker on 2/15/13 at 12:51

Nemo.. Rasp's. appointment at General Hospital went well. Dr. Ferdi removed a 23 lb. anal wart from Rasps nose. Rasp. is now resting comfortably at the downtown mission.