Joe Ricketts, the founder of TD Ameritrade whose family owns the Chicago Cubs, is worth more than $2 billion. He is the owner of DNAinfo, a local news site that covered New York City and Chicago with unparalleled skill, as well as Gothamist, a network of city-oriented websites that DNAinfo bought this year. He is also a major right-wing political donor of rather flexible morality. During the last presidential primaries, Mr. Ricketts spent millions of dollars funding ads that portrayed Donald Trump as an untrustworthy, dangerous misogynist. Once Mr. Trump secured the nomination, Mr. Ricketts spent a million dollars to support him.
One might think that such flexibility would allow Mr. Ricketts to bend but not break when faced with every plutocrat’s worst nightmare: a few dozen modestly paid employees who collectively bargain for better working conditions.
Joe Ricketts. What can I add to the damnation correctly heaped on Joe Ricketts’s head?
Years ago I spent hours delving into TD Ameritrade, do to what I saw as suspicious connections to a so-called financial advisor. (Nowadays, I’m finding it virtually impossible to avoid putting “” around almost anything like “financial advisor.” The alternative is “so-called.” I’ve long since lost a hold on what irony means, but I’m thinking “” are meant to tag something as ironic.)
I did not like what I found. But that isn’t relevant to this Joe Ricketts sighting.
What is relevant is Ricketts’s filthy rich guy antagonism to unions (my bolding):
Of all the lies spouted during the DNAinfo-Gothamist anti-union campaign, none was more transparent than a spokeswoman’s assertion that the union was a “competitive obstacle making it harder for the business to be financially successful.” The company never made money before it was unionized, but more important, the new union hadn’t made a single demand yet.
Joe Ricketts himself wrote that “unions promote a corrosive us-against-them dynamic that destroys the esprit de corps businesses need to succeed.” How’s that esprit de corps now, Mr. Ricketts?
Now, where do you think Joe Ricketts got his anti-union fervor? Are you thinking the Koch Bros Final Solution to Democracy, as inscribed in the Cato Institute’s “libertarian” philosophy?
…The institute opposes minimum wage laws, saying that they violate the freedom of contract and thus private property rights, and increase unemployment.It is opposed to expanding overtime regulations, arguing that it will benefit some employees in the short term, while costing jobs or lowering wages of others, and have no meaningful long-term impact. It opposes child labor prohibitions. It opposes public sector unions and supports right-to-work laws…Cato has also opposed antitrust laws.
Are you wondering, as I am, how Joe Ricketts managed to give so much money to politicians, i.e., buy politicians, despite the meager campaign financing laws that still remain? Here’s Cato on this very subject:
Cato is an opponent of campaign finance reform, arguing that government is the ultimate form of potential corruption and that such laws undermine democracy by undermining competitive elections. Cato also supports the repeal of the Federal Election Campaign Act.
So let’s boycott TD Ameritrade. There are so many damn banks around. Find another one and do not go to them for investment advice–despite the attractive and mildly amusing TV commercials prompting you to do just that.
Because you do remember the attractive diaper-ad commercials the Koch Bros put out in support of Neil Gorsuch, don’t you?