Amazon has pulled out of its commitment to build a headquarters in NYC that was based on over three billion dollars in incentives from NY City and NY state.
The company released a statement:
"For Amazon, the commitment to build a new headquarters requires positive, collaborative relationships with state and local elected officials who will be supportive over the long-term,"
This is great news for the middle class in NYC, since handing Amazon $3 billion in corporate welfare would have hypergentrified the city, making housing unaffordable for hundreds of thousands. But it will really piss off the corporate Democrats, particularly governor Cuomo.
Here's what Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said about Amazon:
Let's be clear. Amazon started an orgy of offerings from cities and states-- offerings to betray local communities and give Amazon insanely budget busting corporate welfare. The concept of screwing does not get any more rapacious. Amazon is the eight hundred-billion-pound gorilla in the room.
It is wonderful news that New Yorkers were able to speak up and stop what seems like an unstoppable monster. Amazon is one of a handful of monster megaplatforms that are a threat to so many aspects of life as we know it. The other platforms include Google, Facebook, Apple, for starters and should probably also include Microsoft, AT&T, Comcast, Fox, and Sinclair Media. These are all far more powerful than is safe for democracy, for humanity, for nature and certainly for the ninety-nine percent. They are too big and too powerful, just as billionaires are.
We have to include these megaplatforms in our conversation about getting rid of billionaires. The issue is the same--too much too-bigness. We need to make it illegal to be a billionaire and we need to make it impossible, and illegal for a company to acquire so much influence and power.
There is a movement, already underway, working on challenging the megaplatforms--the Platform Cooperativism movement. They hold an annual conference and they are creating alternative platforms--cooperative, collective projects, that have users and employees as the owners. The fact that they are collective will set off paranoid reflexes among conservatives. But they are addicted to living lives as passive authoritarians, being told what to do. They can't help their blind ignorance. The time is now to take advantage of this massive victory over a platform-- to learn from it and make more of such victories happen.