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Let’s tax wealth!

Let’s tax the unrealised gains of those billionaires as stocks only ever rise in value, right?

Amazon shares collapsed by 18pc on Thursday night, wiping $202bn (£175bn) off its valuation in one of the biggest one-day sell-offs of all time.

The tech giant warned of weaker consumer spending in the run up to Christmas.

The plunge in its valuation left Amazon valued at around $930bn, the lowest level since the onset of the Covid crisis in March 2020.

Oh, so that’s a big tax refund for Bezos under that plan, isn’t it? And could Piketty be wrong, r is not greater than g?

13 thoughts on “Let’s tax wealth!”

  1. Have you seen what Mark Zuckerberg has been up to?

    $100 Bn (and counting) spaffed on trying to entice people into a crappy virtual reality version of Facebook, lol.

  2. The tech giant warned of weaker consumer spending in the run up to Christmas.

    Looks like people are saving up for goodies like food and heating. Explains the drop in advertising. Anyone cash* rich will be able to pick up some real bargains over the coming months.

    *cash as in spending power, not necessarily piles of money

    .
    @ Steve, if Zuckerburg finds a way to make his virtual universe popular (after all, people like sitting all day watching vertical videos of banal shite on their phone ¯\_ (ツ)_/¯ ) then he’s probably mega minted. His (overall) plans for all the buying and selling to go on in there are no secret.

  3. PJF – I feel like I might be turning into a Boomer in my old age, but I don’t think the general public wants to strap computer goggles to their face like some kind of spastic nerd who will never know the gentle erotic touch of a woman.

    All the use cases for VR look terrible: worse computer games, that give you migraines. Worse versions of Microsoft Teams, where you’re awkwardly projected into cartoon office, that gives you migraines.

    It’s a niche entertainment product they’re trying to crowbar into the enterprise, but employees don’t want this. They just want to work from home like normal people.

    If Mark Zuckerberg can figure out how to convince people how to give him hundreds of billions of dollars for digital hats and avatar packs, he’ll be a wizard and a genius. But all signs point to fed up Meta investors dumping the stock or forcing a change in the board long before Zuckerberg’s virtual reality play can turn a profit.

  4. You’re probably right on the interface front, Steve; it’s a peculiar choice that misses the essential balance between convenience and reward. I can’t see it catching on, but then I’m not a tech billionaire. To be fair, I don’t think even Steve Jobs knew that smart phones would become such powerful little dopamine dispensers; he was just making a cool Star Trek gadget.

    I have a suspicion that smartphones + social apps are partly responsible for the recession. They’re so (for normies, not me) fulfilling and compelling in themselves that many people are much less bothered about other material consumption or even wider ambition.

  5. Working VR would have use cases, but much more for entertainment than work. The trouble with the technology at the moment is that you need an absolute monster PC to run it effectively* (i.e. without the motion lag that causes terrible nausea). Maybe a typical home computer in 5-10 years will be capable enough, but right now, no.

    * that’s if you want photo-realism, rather than cartoon characters à la Meta.

  6. Working VR would have use cases, but much more for entertainment than work

    It was very effective for us on design and construction of some new facilities. In one instance, we let the plant mechanics take a virtual tour of a new powerhouse while it was still in design stage – they pointed out access and ergonomic issues; we ended up turning (for example) one water-filtration skid by 90° to make it easier to get at a couple of valves, and moved some other bits and bobs that allowed better simultaneous access to two different systems; in the original layout each system had pretty good access, but required workers to stand on top of one another if both jobs were happening at the same time.
    It did require a lot of computer horsepower – but on a billion dollar plant, that’s not even a rounding error. That’s not a common use-case, and is a line-extension to the CAD business, not a business in itself.

  7. Bloke in the Fourth Reich

    Rising interest rates will be shite for consumers and great for the banks. Must sell my Amazon shares, and buy Credit Suisse instead.

  8. “Rising interest rates will be shite for consumers and great for the banks. Must sell my Amazon shares, and buy Credit Suisse instead.”

    Bit late for that, Amazon are down nearly 20% since Tuesday…….though Credit Suisse are still in the bargain basement. Or circling the drain, depending on ones point of view…..

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