War on Greed in the media
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by KenInNy, DownWithTyranny
If Burger King is "not anti-union" as they claim, then let's see them stay out of their workers' efforts to unionize. And if they're "not anti-union," does that mean they're suddenly pro-worker? Then perhaps they should quit dropping hundreds of thousands on lobbying efforts to oppose federal minimum wage hikes... Read on.

by Susie Madrak, Crooks & Liars
This is good news from the SEIU, assuming Burger King has dropped their opposition permanently. It seems to be the result of a full week of SEIU actions at Burger Kings across the country: "Under pressure from SEIU activists and allies like Brave New Films, Jobs with Justice, and the Coalition for Social Justice this week, Burger King scrambled to respond to allegations that it lobbied against the Employee Free Choice Act while paying its workers poverty wages." Read on.

by Corbin Hiar, The Nation
The treatment of workers at Burger King, which was bought in 2002 by a consortium of private equity firms including Goldman Sachs, stands in stark contrast to the extravagant bonuses awarded to Goldman's bailed-out bankers. The relationship between Burger King and Goldman Sachs is a troubling example of the current balance between labor and capital. Burger King has been a repeat offender of the Federal Labor Standards Act and has lobbied to stop the passage of the Employee Free Choice Act, which would make it easier for its poorly paid workers to unionize. Read on.

by Christy Hardin Smith, FireDogLake
Have it your way, with some excess at the top? Read on.

by ZP Heller, OpenLeft
Here's a Wall Street whopper for you. Goldman Sachs, where former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson was once CEO, switched from an investment bank to a bank holding company last year so it could qualify for $10 billion in bailout funds. They then spent $6.5 billion on bonuses for their financial staff. Goldman's recklessness is one of several scandalous stories of Wall Street giants abusing the bailout at the expense of taxpayers and the economy. But in this case, Goldman's excessive spending has had an immediate and profound impact on the American work force. Read on.

by Andrew Ross Sorkin, New York Times
Bells will be ringing, and carolers will be greeting the Upper East Side neighbors of Henry Kravis this morning. It may be Christmastime, but the revelers are not there to embrace the holiday. They will be outside the apartment of Mr. Kravis, a founder of the buyout firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, for a sidewalk screening of the first of a series of short films crusading against private equity firms. Passers-by can catch the film on high-technology sandwich boards being worn by protesters. The movie, “The War on Greed, Starring the Homes of Henry Kravis,” is a tongue-in-cheek story — think “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” meets “Roger & Me” — detailing Mr. Kravis’s homes and lifestyle, juxtaposed against the homes and incomes of working families. Read on.

by Katrina Vanden Heuvel, The Nation
Henry Kravis, founding partner in the private equity company KKR, made $450 million last year--that's $1.3 million per day, or $51,369 per hour. He did it largely by borrowing money to take over public companies, then selling off the company's assets to pay the debt, laying off thousands of workers, and slashing benefits for those who remained. (If you've seen Michael Douglas as Gordon Gekko in Wall Street, you know the drill.) And for his efforts to move us closer to Gilded Age-like inequality, the government rewards Kravis... Read on.

by Lizzie Widdicombe, The New Yorker
The holiday season often arrives with a movie villain, and this year, in the tradition of “It’s a Wonderful Life” (Old Man Potter) and “Bad Santa,” comes “War on Greed,” a series of Internet shorts whose first installment focusses on the putative Scrooge-like misdeeds of Henry Kravis, the private-equity man. The film, by Robert Greenwald, drafts Kravis as the new Grinch, and it argues... Read on.

by Michael Flaherty, Reuters
Brave New Films, Robert Greenwald’s company behind the movie “WalMart–The High Cost of Low Price,” is taking aim at another industry: The private equity world. On Thursday, the company will release the first of a series of short videos on private equity. The first piece is called “A Home for the Holidays” and its “world premiere” will occur this Thursday on the sidewalk outside of Henry Kravis’ home at 625 Park Avenue. Read on.

by Stephen Foley, Independent
There was no red carpet for the premiere of The War on Greed, starring Henry Kravis and His Many Homes; and the ultra-rich residents in attendance at the screening on Manhattan's exclusive Upper East Side may not have been an entirely willing audience. But if the star of your film is unwilling to accept an invitation to the premiere, what is a firebrand documentary-maker... Read on.

by Dan Primack, Private Equity Hub
Regular readers of this space know that I support a change to the tax treatment of carried interest. You also know that I strongly oppose many of the fees that buyout firms suck out of their portfolio companies, including deal closing fees and management agreement termination fees. In other words, my non-pandering bona fides are established and well-distributed. I put this out there as a precursor to the following: I am extraordinarily disappointed by the short documentary... Read on.

by Finding the Filth
This short film focuses on Henry Kravis, a man who makes more than $51,000 an hour, by borrowing money from banks, buying up companies, slashing benefits, then selling the companies and laying off all it's workers. He reaps profits in the hundreds of millions of dollars every year, by devastating the lives of hardworking Americans. And to top it all off, he pays far less in taxes than you. It's time for change.

by Breakingviews.com
KKR boss Henry Kravis must have woken up pretty nervous this morning, the New York Times ran a story about a massive protest that was supposed to taken place outside his posh Park Avenue apartment. Breaking Views decided to go check it out... Watch.

by Matthew Wurtzel, Dealscape
While private equity has won a reprieve in its battle over the taxation of carried interest, that may be cold comfort for Henry Kravis, who's not only facing protests at his Upper East Side home, but is the feature of a new, short documentary called "The War on Greed," which is available on YouTube below. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman, Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., dropped Thursday a proposed change in the tax laws that... Read on.

by David Sirota, Sirotablog
Robert has been one of the most effective progressive warriors against the likes of Fox News and Wal-Mart, and his newest campaign takes on one of the most powerful forces perpetuating the horrific economic equality America is now struggling with: private equity managers. These are the millionaires and billionaires who use investment money from large institutions (pension funds, etc.) to purchase public companies, break them up and sell off the parts... Read on.

CNBC's Closing Bell
Global unions are going to Washington next week, with Philip Jennings, UNI Global Union general secretary, and CNBC's Maria Bartiromo. Features clips from the War on Greed. Watch
Director Robert Greenwald on CNBC's Closing Bell

by Amanda Janis, Private Equity Online
PEO interviews Robert Greenwald, the creator of a new series of short films criticising private equity, following an earlier PEO commentary about his 'The War on Greed' series. Last week, PEO published a commentary on the first installment of "The War on Greed", a series of short films on the private equity industry by Robert Greenwald, the political activist and filmmaker behind recent Brave New Films documentaries including "Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism,"... Read on.

by Chris Bovzar and Jessica Pressler, New York Magazine
Right about now, protesters are gathering in front of Henry Kravis's home at 625 Park Avenue for the world premiere of The War on Greed: Starring the Homes of Henry Kravis, a Fabulous Life Of–style documentary that contrasts the private-equity magnate's income and lifestyle against those of normal working people. In the film, which, according to the Times, is being screened on "high technology sandwich boards" worn by protesters, filmmaker Robert Greenwald asks some normal people what they would do if they got to live in one of Kravis's opulent homes for the holidays. "I would sell everything in it and give the money to charity!" one woman squeals, predictably. But not everyone's so self-righteous... Read on.

by Chris Thompson, The Village Voice
Perhaps you’ve heard of the new film lampooning the lavish mansions acquired by Henry Kravis, the KKR co-founder and leveraged buyout king. After all, protesters have been idling outside Kravis’ Upper East Side apartment with flatscreen televisions attached to sandwich boards, showcasing filmmaker Robert Greenwald’s little spoof to passersby. The stunt coincided with a new campaign by the Service Employees International Union to highlight... Read on

by Jane Hamsher, Fire Dog Lake
Robert Greenwald is going to Henry Kravis' house this morning to make a point. Kravis makes $57,000 an hour -- but you probably pay more taxes.The series is an attempt to bring attention to the caustic and destabilizing effects that private equity firms have had on various sectors. The SEIU has also been organizing against private equity firms like the Carlyle Group, who see managed care for the elderly as a great opportunity to slash costs and reap huge profits -- with predictably horrific results... Read on.

by Bess Levin, DealBreaker.com
Brave New Films held a screening of “The War on Greed: Starring the Homes of Henry Kravis” this morning in front of the KKR founder’s 625 Park Avenue apartment in an attempt to shame him into…something. Unfortunately, director Robert Greenwald didn’t do any recon before planning the event, and was disappointed to find out that Hank is currently on vacation in Palm Beach, at his 15,000... Read on.

by Bill Scher, Common Sense
It wasn't fair of me yesterday to pick on just hedge fund managers for lobbying to protect their discount income tax rate, instead of closing that loophole to pay for preventing an unfair expansion of the Alternative Minimum Tax. Because it's not just hedge fund managers, but private equity moguls as well. Who's the kind of guy getting this sickeningly sweet tax deal? Brave New Films wants you to meet Henry Kravis.

by Michael Rainey, bloggingbuyouts
The New York Times is reporting today that a group of protesters will be demonstrating outside of Henry Kravis's 28-room apartment on Park Avenue today. The demonstration will have a holiday feel, complete with carols and ringing bells. A movie with the jolly title of "The War on Greed, Starring the Homes of Henry Kravis" will be shown on sandwich boards worn by protesters. The film is apparently a satirical look at Kravis's many homes and opulent... Read on.

by Richard Johnson, New York Post
Wealthy residents of the Upper East Side's most expensive blocks are disturbed over noisy, sign-waving protesters on the sidewalks outside their homes. The latest targets of the visiting activists are Phillippe Dauman, chairman of Viacom, and Henry Kravis, founder of the buyout firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts. In Dauman's case, a group denouncing violence in rap videos has picketed in front of his East 65th Street townhouse every... Read on.

by Morgan Clendaniel, Good Magazine
Some people have noted that we are in the midst of a second Gilded Age, where robber barons gleefully count their money while the rest of us shiver in the cold with our gruel (we pray we can look forward to a subsequent trust-busting, progressive era, but we wont hold our breath). Robert Greenwald takes this theory a step further, giving us the parable of Henry Kravis and the working folk... Read on.

by Mark Hawthorne, The Age
The streets of New York can be inhospitable at the best of times, but for Henry Kravis, of private equity behemoth Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, the season of goodwill has been particularly unfriendly this year. Thousands of protesters chose Kravis' 26-room apartment on Park Avenue to stage a rally highlighting the enormous wealth of private equity moguls. The protesters held a footpath... Read on.

by CaptCT, My Left Nutmeg
The latest from Robert Greenwald and Brave New Films... "Henry Kravis is a billionaire, the 57th richest person in American. He acquired this wealth by purchasing public companies with borrowed money. To pay off the debt"... Read on.
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