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Corporate Corruption News Stories
Excerpts of Key Corporate Corruption News Stories in Major Media


Below are highly revealing excerpts of important corporate corruption news stories reported in the media that suggest a major cover-up. Links are provided to the full stories on their major media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These corporate corruption news stories are listed by date posted to this webpage. You can explore the same articles listed by order of importance or by article date. By choosing to educate ourselves on these important issues and to spread the word, we can and will build a brighter future.

Note: This comprehensive list of corporate corruption news stories is usually updated once a week. Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


EU states rebel against plans to relicense weedkiller glyphosate
2016-03-04, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2016-03-14 19:36:30
http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/mar/04/eu-states-rebel-against-pl...

Several EU countries could scupper plans by the European commission to approve the relicensing of a weedkiller linked to cancer. The vote to relicense glyphosate, a key ingredient in herbicides such as Monsanto’s multibillion-dollar brand Roundup, had been scheduled at a two-day meeting of experts from the EU’s 28 member states, which begins on Monday. But officials are now saying that they may postpone the vote rather than lose it, raising the prospect of a legal limbo for glyphosate, the licence for which runs out in June. France, the Netherlands and Sweden have all said they will not support an assessment by the European food safety authority (Efsa) that glyphosate is harmless. That ruling ran counter to findings by the WHO’s cancer agency that glyphosate was “probably carcinogenic to humans, causing a bitter row over scientific methodology and industry influence. The Swedish environment minister, Ĺsa Romson, said: “We won’t take risks with glyphosate and we don’t think that the analysis done so far is good enough. We will propose that no decision is taken until further analysis has been done and the Efsa scientists have been more transparent about their considerations.” An Efsa panel based its recommendation that glyphosate was safe ... on six industry-funded studies that have not been fully published. Glyphosate use has been banned or restricted in large parts of Europe because of alleged links to a host of health problems, ranging from birth defects and kidney failure to coeliac disease, colitis and autism.

Note: The overlap between the GMO industry and European regulators has become increasingly controversial. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


Congressional watchdog to probe lax Fed bank oversight
2016-03-04, CNBC/Reuters
Posted: 2016-03-14 19:28:55
http://www.cnbc.com/2016/03/04/reuters-america-exclusive-congressional-watchd...

A U.S. watchdog agency is preparing to investigate whether the Federal Reserve and other regulators are too soft on the banks they are meant to police. Ranking representatives Maxine Waters of the House Financial Services Committee and Al Green of the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations asked the Government Accountability Office on Oct. 8 to launch the "evaluation of regulatory capture" and to focus on the New York Fed. The GAO said it has begun planning its approach. The probe, which had not been previously reported or made public, is the first by an outside agency into the perception that government regulators are "captured" by and too deferential toward the bankers they supervise, so that Wall Street benefits at the public's expense. Such perceptions have dogged the U.S. central bank since it failed to head off the 2007-2009 financial crisis. While the GAO has not yet determined the full scope of the investigation, the other main agencies that embed supervisors inside financial institutions are the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. In their letter, Waters and Green said they are particularly concerned about the New York Fed and reports of a "revolving door" between it and banks and "a reluctance to challenge" the firms.

Note: Are Goldman Sachs' suspicious ties to the New York Fed and the revolving door between Congress and Wall Street finally beginning to get serious attention? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corruption in government and in the financial industry.


Former Economic Hit Man Returns to Take on the "Death Economy"
2016-03-10, TruthOut.org
Posted: 2016-03-14 19:18:40
http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/35161-john-perkins-the-former-economic-hit...

The pernicious influence of "economic hit men" has spread around the globe. John Perkins revealed his first-hand experience of this violent and coercive phenomenon. Now, in The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, he brings this story of greed and corruption up to date. The treacherous cancer beneath the surface, which was revealed in the original Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, has ... spread from the economically developing countries to the United States and the rest of the world; it attacks the very foundations of democracy and the planet's life-support systems. Although this cancer has spread widely and deeply, most people still aren't aware of it; yet all of us are impacted by the collapse it has caused. It has become the dominant system of economics, government, and society today, [and] created a "death economy" - one based on wars or the threat of war, debt, and the rape of the earth's resources. Although the death economy is built on a form of capitalism, it is important to note that the word capitalism ... includes local farmers' markets as well as this very dangerous form of global corporate capitalism, controlled by the corporatocracy. Despite all the bad news and the attempts of modern-day robber barons to steal our democracy and our planet ... when enough of us perceive the true workings of this EHM system, we will take the individual and collective actions necessary to control the cancer and restore our health.

Note: Read a revealing seven-page summary of Economic Hit Man and spread the word!


GlaxoSmithKline fined $3bn after bribing doctors to increase drugs sales
2012-07-03, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2016-03-14 19:14:18
http://www.theguardian.com/business/2012/jul/03/glaxosmithkline-fined-bribing...

The pharmaceutical group GlaxoSmithKline has been fined $3bn (Ł1.9bn) after admitting bribing doctors and encouraging the prescription of unsuitable antidepressants to children. The company encouraged sales reps in the US to mis-sell three drugs to doctors and lavished hospitality and kickbacks on those who agreed to write extra prescriptions. The company admitted corporate misconduct over the antidepressants Paxil and Wellbutrin and asthma drug Advair. GSK also paid for articles on its drugs to appear in medical journals and "independent" doctors were hired by the company to promote the treatments. Paxil – which was only approved for adults – was promoted as suitable for children and teenagers by the company despite trials that showed it was ineffective. Children and teenagers are only treated with antidepressants in exceptional circumstances due to an increased risk of suicide. The second drug to be mis-sold was Wellbutrin – another antidepressant aimed only at adults. The prosecution said the company paid $275,000 to Dr Drew Pinsky, who hosted a popular radio show, to promote the drug on his programme, in particular for unapproved uses. US attorney Carmin Ortiz said: "The sales force bribed physicians to prescribe GSK products using every imaginable form of high-priced entertainment, from Hawaiian vacations [and] paying doctors millions of dollars to go on speaking tours, to tickets to Madonna concerts." Despite the large fine, $3bn is far less than the profits made from the drugs.

Note: In February 2016, GlaxoSmithKline was fined another $53 million by the UK for preventing generic competition. The list of huge fines to top drug companies includes five fines of over $1 billion and dozens over $100 million. How can we trust these companies on the safety and reliability of their products?


GlaxoSmithKline fined $490m by China for bribery
2014-02-19, BBC
Posted: 2016-03-14 19:12:34
http://www.bbc.com/news/business-29274822

China has fined UK pharmaceuticals firm GlaxoSmithKline $490m (Ł297m) after a court found it guilty of bribery. The record penalty follows allegations the drug giant paid out bribes to doctors and hospitals in order to have their products promoted. The court gave GSK's former head of Chinese operations, Mark Reilly, a suspended three-year prison sentence and he is set to be deported. Other GSK executives have also been given suspended jail sentences. The guilty verdict was delivered after a one-day trial at a court in Changsha, according to the Xinhua news agency. Chinese authorities first announced they were investigating GSK in July last year, in what has become the biggest corruption scandal to hit a foreign firm in years. The company was accused of having made an estimated $150m in illegal profits. GSK said it had "published a statement of apology to the Chinese government and its people". This is a humiliating outcome for one of Britain's biggest companies: pleading guilty to systematic bribery, facing the biggest fine in Chinese history and making an abject apology to the Chinese government and people.

Note: In February 2016, GlaxoSmithKline was fined another $53 million by the UK for preventing generic competition. The list of huge fines to top drug companies includes five fines of over $1 billion and dozens over $100 million. How can we trust these companies on the safety and reliability of their products?


Are You a Toxic Waste Disposal Site?
2016-02-13, New York Times
Posted: 2016-03-07 13:36:42
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/14/opinion/sunday/are-you-a-toxic-waste-dispos...

Scientists have identified more than 200 industrial chemicals - from pesticides, flame retardants, jet fuel - as well as neurotoxins like lead in the blood or breast milk of Americans, indeed, in people all over our planet. These have been linked to cancer, genital deformities, lower sperm count, obesity and diminished I.Q.. Medical organizations ... have demanded tougher regulations or warned people to avoid them. They have all been drowned out. Chemical companies, by spending vast sums on lobbying - $100,000 per member of Congress last year - block serious oversight. Almost none of the chemicals in products we use daily have been tested for safety. “Industrial chemicals that injure the developing brain” have been linked to conditions like autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, noted The Lancet Neurology, a peer-reviewed medical journal. Yet we still don’t have a clear enough sense of what is safe, because many industrial chemicals aren’t safety tested before they are put on the market. Meanwhile, Congress has dragged out efforts to strengthen the Toxic Substances Control Act and test more chemicals for safety. The President’s Cancer Panel recommended that people eat organic if possible, filter water and avoid microwaving food in plastic containers. All good advice, but that’s like telling people to avoid cholera without providing clean water. And that’s why we need another public health revolution in the 21st century.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corruption in government and in the corporate world. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.


Drug Distribution Becomes Weapon to Block Competition
2016-03-03, ABC/Associated Press
Posted: 2016-03-07 13:34:17
http://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStory/drug-distribution-weapon-block-compe...

The same strategy that Martin Shkreli used to get away with a 5,000-percent price increase on an old drug is used by many other drugmakers. Before the price hike that made him infamous, the former CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals had to ensure that no competitor would be able to launch a cheaper version of Daraprim, the 60-year-old anti-infection pill that is no longer under patent. Shkreli had the perfect weapon: a tightly-controlled distribution system which would make it virtually impossible for a competitor to obtain enough Daraprim to develop their own version. Many larger drugmakers have also turned drug distribution into a powerful tool against competition. The strategy takes advantage of a simple fact: If generic drugmakers can't get their hands on the original product, they cannot perform the tests needed to develop a generic version. When the original drugmaker controls the drug's distribution, they can simply refuse to sell. The effect on patients is higher prices for drugs. At least 40 drugs worth an estimated $5.4 billion are sheltered from competition by distribution hurdles, according to a study commissioned by the Generic Pharmaceutical Association, an industry trade group. The Food and Drug Administration is aware of the misuse of distribution programs. The agency does not penalize companies for the practice.

Note: For more excellent information on drug prices hikes, read this penetrating article in the Daily Beast. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing big Pharma profiteering news articles from reliable major media sources.


BBC missed opportunities to stop sexual predator Jimmy Savile, inquiry finds
2016-02-25, Los Angeles Times/Associated Press
Posted: 2016-03-07 13:30:24
http://www.latimes.com/world/la-fg-britain-bbc-jimmy-savile-20160225-story.html

An investigation into the Jimmy Savile sex abuse scandal cleared the BBC of wrongdoing Thursday, even as it painted a damning portrait of an institution where employees were afraid to raise even serious concerns about sexual misconduct for fear of upsetting celebrity talent or making the corporation look bad. Savile, a BBC television presenter and popular charity figure who died in October 2011, is believed to be one of Britain's most prolific sex offenders, often targeting minors. “Celebrities were treated with kid gloves and were virtually untouchable,” said Janet Smith, a former Court of Appeal judge who conducted the inquiry, describing a BBC culture of not wanting to “rock the boat.” Smith said 117 people at the BBC admitted they had heard rumors about Savile, who abused victims on BBC premises, including the venues where his programs “Top of the Pops” and “Jim'll Fix It” were shot. Smith's review said the Savile abuse incidents dated all the way back to 1959. She identified 72 victims of Savile, both male and female. One was only 8 years old. But girls who raised concerns about Savile were treated as a “nuisance.” In one case in 1969, a girl who was molested on the “Top of the Pops” program while standing next to Savile on the podium was “ejected from the building.” The inquiry also concluded that another BBC star, sports presenter Stuart Hall, 86, also used his celebrity to shield his activities, often plying his victims with alcohol. The Hall investigation ... found 21 victims.

Note: Watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team titled "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads directly to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this sad subject in the US. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


The problem with newspapers today
2016-02-07, CBC (Canada's public broadcasting system)
Posted: 2016-03-07 13:25:56
http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/marty-baron-neil-macdonald-1.3435715

The people who really run the world, it turns out, are perfectly capable of silencing the presses. Consider Postmedia, the biggest newspaper chain in the country. It is largely owned by an American hedge fund ... and editorial direction is dictated from corporate headquarters. Advertiser-controlled copy designed to resemble news [takes] up ever more prominent placement. Marty Baron ... took over the Boston Globe back in 2001, [and] ordered the newspaper's investigative unit to go after pedophile priests. The investigation took a year, and produced a scoop of historic proportion - proving church complicity in covering up heinous crimes. Fifteen years later, like most North American newspapers, the Boston Globe is hobbled and shrunken. Defiance has mostly given way to naked fear, as media managers, and not just in newspapers, desperately try to hold onto splintering audiences and plummeting revenue. Baron, now executive editor of the Washington Post, acknowledged the economic forces ripping the business to shreds. But, said Baron, news institutions must place principle ahead of metrics, or our core withers, and we become clickbait hustlers for corporate paymasters. "The greatest danger to a vigorous press today," he [said], "comes from ourselves."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corporate corruption and media manipulation.


Scalia Took Dozens of Trips Funded by Private Sponsors
2016-02-26, New York Times
Posted: 2016-03-07 13:22:22
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/27/us/politics/scalia-led-court-in-taking-trip...

Antonin Scalia was the longest-tenured justice on the current Supreme Court. But another quality also set him apart: Among the court’s members, he was the most frequent traveler, to spots around the globe, on trips paid for by private sponsors. Ethical standards prohibit judges from accepting gifts from anyone with a matter currently before the court. But those guidelines presented no barrier to John Poindexter, who invited Justice Scalia to stay at his West Texas ranch. Mr. Poindexter is the owner of J. B. Poindexter & Co., a manufacturing firm based in Houston. One of his companies, the Mic Group, was a defendant in an age discrimination lawsuit filed by a former employee who unsuccessfully petitioned the Supreme Court for a review last year. Mr. Poindexter, according to a former general manager at the ranch, is also a leader in the International Order of St. Hubertus, a worldwide organization of hunters, as, apparently, were several other guests during Justice Scalia’s visit. In 2011, a liberal advocacy group, Common Cause, questioned whether Justice Scalia and Justice Clarence Thomas should have disqualified themselves from participating in the landmark Citizens United case on campaign finance because they had attended a political retreat in Palm Springs, Calif., sponsored by the conservative financier Charles G. Koch. Mr. Koch funds groups that could benefit from the ruling.

Note: Read about Antonin Scalia's "organization of hunters" and the other strange secret societies populated by the elite. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


CBS Chief: Trump's Success Is 'Damn Good' For the Network
2016-03-01, Fortune
Posted: 2016-03-07 13:20:31
http://fortune.com/2016/03/01/les-moonves-cbs-trump/

It’s still up for debate whether or not the media “created” Donald Trump - or, at least, the GOP presidential frontrunner version of him - but there is no doubt the billionaire reality TV star turned politician has meant big ratings - and income - for networks. Leslie Moonves, the chairman of CBS, admitted as much on Monday. “It may not be good for America, but it’s damn good for CBS,” Moonves said at a Morgan Stanley conference in San Francisco. In addition to around-the-clock TV news coverage of Trump and his fellow presidential candidates (but, mainly Trump), major broadcast and cable networks have pulled in record ratings for televised debates throughout this election cycle. Roughly 13.5 million tuned in to CBS for a GOP debate last month, making that one of the most-watched debates so far this year, as nearly 5 million more viewers tuned in to watch Trump battle his GOP rivals than did for a Democratic debate on CBS last November. Thanks to those high ratings, networks have reportedly been able to gouge advertisers for higher ad-rates during this cycle’s debates. Moonves indicated that he is more than happy to have Trump in the White House race if it means more advertising money.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about elections corruption and the manipulation of public perception.


Israel boycott ban: Shunning Israeli goods to become criminal offence for public bodies and student unions
2016-02-14, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2016-02-28 20:30:19
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/israel-boycott-local-councils-...

Local councils, public bodies and even some university student unions are to be banned by law from boycotting “unethical” companies. All publicly funded institutions will lose the freedom to refuse to buy goods and services from companies involved in the arms trade, fossil fuels, tobacco products or Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. Any public bodies that continue to pursue boycotts will face “severe penalties”, ministers said. Underlining the main target of the ban, the formal announcement will be made by the Cabinet Office minister Matt Hancock when he visits Israel this week. Israeli companies, along with other firms which have investments in the occupied West Bank, have been among those targeted by unofficial boycotts in the past. In 2014 Leicester City Council passed a policy to boycott goods produced in Israeli settlements in the West Bank while the Scottish Government published a procurement notice to Scottish councils which “strongly discourages trade and investment from illegal settlements”. Mr. Hancock said the current position where local authorities had autonomy to make ethical purchasing decisions was “undermining” Britain’s national security.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Why Did Top Scientific Journals Reject This Dr. Bronner's Ad?
2014-10-20, Mother Jones
Posted: 2016-02-28 20:00:57
http://www.motherjones.com/tom-philpott/2014/10/read-dr-bronners-gmo-ad-thats...

David Bronner, CEO of Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps, presides over a company with famously wacky product labels. But Bronner himself, grandson of the founder ... has emerged as a serious, though fun-loving, activist, particularly around pesticides and genetically modified crops. Bronner's writing on GMOs is too hot for the advertising pages of the English-speaking world's two most renowned science journals, Science and Nature - even though a slew of magazines ... accepted the Bronner ad. It consists of a short essay, known in publishing as an advertorial, [and] focuses on how GMO crops have led to a net increase in pesticide use in the United States, citing an analysis by Ramon Seidler, a retired senior staff scientist at the Environmental Protection Agency. Bronner ... first published his critique on Huffington Post, and then decided to publish it as an ad in a variety of high-profile magazines. Science was close to accepting it. An ad sales manager for the American Association for the Advancement of Science, which published the magazine, emailed on September 15 that she would send over paper work "in a bit," adding that "[a]fter you sign it, I can take your credit card info." The price: $9,911.00. But hours later, she wrote back, squashing the deal: "This has gone up the ladder quite far and our CEO along with the board have come back saying that we cannot accept the ad. We're concerned about backlash from our members and potentially getting into a battle with the GMO industry."

Note: See the original ad at this link. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on media manipulation and the GMO controversy from reliable major media sources.


Herbicide and Insecticide Use on GMO Crops Skyrocketing While Pro-GMO Media Run Interference
2014-09-15, Huffington Post
Posted: 2016-02-28 19:57:37
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-bronner/herbicide-insecticide-use_b_57913...

Michael Specter's recent articles bashing Vandana Shiva and the labeling of genetically engineered foods (Seeds of Doubt and The Problem with G.M.O. Labels) in the New Yorker are the latest high-profile pro-GMO articles that fail to engage with the fundamental critique of genetically engineered food crops in US soil today: rather than reduce pesticide inputs GMOs are causing them to skyrocket in amount and toxicity. Setting the record straight, Dr. Ramon J. Seidler, Ph.D., former Senior Scientist, Environmental Protection Agency, has recently published a well-researched article documenting the devastating facts, "Pesticide Use on Genetically Engineered Crops," in Environmental Working Group's online AgMag. Dr. Seidler's article cites and links recent scientific literature and media reports, and should be required reading for all journalists covering GMOs, as well as for citizens generally to understand why their right to know if food is genetically engineered is so important. Over 99% of GMO acreage is engineered by chemical companies to tolerate heavy herbicide (glyphosate) use and/or produce insecticide (Bt) in every cell of every plant over the entire growing season. The result is massive selection pressure that has rapidly created pest resistance - the opposite of integrated pest management. Predictably ... we now have huge swaths of the country infested with "superweeds" and "superbugs" resistant to glyphosate and Bt, meaning more volume of more toxic pesticides are being applied.

Note: The negative health impacts of Monsanto's Roundup are well known. Major lawsuits are building over Monsanto's lies to regulators and the public about the safety of glyphosate. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


Glyphosate Now The Most-Used Agricultural Chemical Ever
2016-02-02, Newsweek
Posted: 2016-02-22 17:07:12
http://www.newsweek.com/glyphosate-now-most-used-agricultural-chemical-ever-4...

The world is awash in glyphosate, the active ingredient in the herbicide Roundup, produced by Monsanto. It has now become the most heavily-used agricultural chemical in the history of the world. A study published Tuesday ... reveals that Americans have applied 1.8 million tons of glyphosate since its introduction in 1974. Worldwide, 9.4 million tons of the chemical have been sprayed onto fields. That’s ... enough to spray nearly half a pound of Roundup on every cultivated acre of land in the world. And it’s troubling, considering that in March 2015 the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer unanimously determined that glyphosate is probably carcinogenic to humans. Research has also shown that glyphosate is an endocrine disruptor, meaning that it interferes with the proper functioning and production of hormones, in human cell lines. The mass-spraying of glyphosate has [also] led to the explosion of resistant weeds, which have evolved to survive despite being sprayed. Already, weeds resistant to the herbicide are found on half of all American farmers’ fields. Glyphosate was once only used on a small-scale. However, in the 1990s, Monsanto began introducing genetically modified crops that were resistant to the herbicides, such as Roundup Ready corn and soybeans. Since then, its use has skyrocketed. At the same time, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has relaxed its rules. Fifty times more glyphosate is allowed on corn grain now than in 1996.

Note: The negative health impacts of Monsanto's Roundup are well known. Major lawsuits are building over Monsanto's lies to regulators and the public about the safety of glyphosate. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


Authorities have reached a $3.2 billion settlement with Morgan Stanley over bank practices that contributed to the 2008 financial crisis
2016-02-11, US News & World Report/Associated Press
Posted: 2016-02-22 16:50:52
http://www.usnews.com/news/business/articles/2016-02-11/authorities-reach-32b...

Morgan Stanley will pay $3.2 billion in a settlement over bank practices that contributed to the 2008 financial crisis, including misrepresentations about the value of mortgage-backed securities, authorities announced Thursday. The nationwide settlement, negotiated by the working group appointed by President Barack Obama in 2012, says the bank acknowledges that it increased the acceptable risk levels for mortgage loans pooled and sold to investors without telling them. Loans with material defects were included, packaged into the securities and sold. The Justice Department said the $2.6 billion federal penalty to resolve claims about the bank's marketing, sale and issuance of those securities is the largest piece of settlements with the working group that have totaled approximately $5 billion. "Our work is far from over," said New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who co-chairs the group. "Communities across the country have not gotten back to where they were before the crash." Total settlements so far are about $64 billion, Schneiderman said. The working group previously reached major settlements with Citigroup for $7 billion, JPMorgan for $13 billion and Bank of America for $16.65 billion. The New York-based investment bank reported a fourth-quarter profit of $908 million.

Note: Since the bailout in 2008, the percentage of US banking assets held by the big banks has almost doubled. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corruption in government and in the financial industry.


Where to Invade Next
2016-02-11, Rolling Stone
Posted: 2016-02-22 16:48:12
http://www.rollingstone.com/movies/reviews/where-to-invade-next-20160211

Has Michael Moore gone soft? You might think so, making a snap judgment of Where to Invade Next, a ... documentary hellbent on seeing the best in people. Other people. Not us Americans. Moore sets up his film by daydreaming about a summons from the Joint Chiefs of Staff. "Instead of using Marines, use me," he pleads. As we watch a collage of America at its worst – bank scandals, stock frauds, housing foreclosures, black teens murdered by cops – Moore sets out to invade the world for bright ideas. In Italy, he meets a couple who get 30 days paid vacation each year with no loss in productivity. In France, Moore is astonished by school kids who are served nutritional food. On a visit to a Norway prison, the worst felons are treated with compassion, with sentences capped at 21 years, even for murderers. Yet the crime rate is low, as is recidivism. In Tunisia, women win free health care from a hidebound Islamist regime. And get a load of Portugal, where using drugs is not a crime, but rehab is offered to those who want it. A trip to Iceland finds that the bankers who brought economic ruin to their country are thrown in jail instead of being bailed out. Love him or hate his methods, Moore touches a nerve in Where to Invade Next. In a climactic remembrance at the Berlin Wall, he recalls a time when a corrupt regime was brought down by people willing to protest. What counted most were humanitarian principles, the same bedrock concepts that America was founded on. See, the joke's on us.

Note: Moore's films have looked critically at for-profit medicine and the downside of capitalism in recent years.


Don't Leave GMOs in the Dark
2015-07-30, US News & World Report
Posted: 2016-02-14 09:59:17
http://www.usnews.com/opinion/economic-intelligence/2015/07/30/dont-stop-stat...

The use of GMOs is controversial. There is debate in the scientific community as to whether the consumption of GMO foods hurts people directly. But there is no denying that GMOs result in vastly more herbicide (such as Roundup, a top weed killer) being dumped on food crops, and that glyphosphate (the active ingredient in Roundup) probably causes cancer in the quantities used. Other Roundup ingredients are suspect as well. Those who oppose GMOs don't have the upper hand in Congress and so they ... seek to establish a uniform labeling system so that food producers clearly identify whether their products have GMOs or not. Labeling is very popular among American consumers: In multiple polls conducted over the years by many different firms, about 90 percent of Americans consistently support mandatory labeling. Mandatory labeling initiatives are in play in many states, and have passed in three (Maine, Vermont and Connecticut). But Big Ag is spending heavily to block these efforts. The House and Senate are listening to Big Ag rather than to American consumers. The House recently passed a bill that gives the appearance of supporting GMO disclosure while doing the opposite. The bill, H.R. 1599, carries a brilliantly deceptive name that would make George Orwell proud. Called the "Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2014" the bill would reinforce the current voluntary disclosure system but would prohibit individual states and counties from enacting more stringent legislation. The detractors have branded this bill the "DARK Act" as in "Deny Americans the Right to Know"."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


Shkreli Was Right: Everyone's Hiking Drug Prices
2016-02-02, BloombergBusinessweek
Posted: 2016-02-14 09:56:50
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-02-02/shkreli-not-alone-in-drug-p...

After Martin Shkreli raised the price of anti-parasitic drug Daraprim more than 50-fold to $750 a pill last year, he said he wasn’t alone in taking big price hikes. The former drug executive was right. A survey of about 3,000 brand-name prescription drugs found that prices more than doubled for 60 and at least quadrupled for 20 since December 2014. Skyrocketing prices are getting increased scrutiny ahead of a U.S. congressional hearing this week: Democratic Representative Elijah Cummings, ranking member on a committee that is probing drug pricing, said Tuesday that pricing “tactics are not limited to a few ‘bad apples,’ but are prominent throughout the industry.” The cost of many drugs [rises] at annual rates of more than 10 percent. Drugmakers raised the prices of products as wide-ranging as erectile dysfunction drug Viagra, heart treatments, dermatology medicine and even brands that long have lost their patents. While specialty companies have had the steepest hikes, giants such as Pfizer Inc. and GlaxoSmithKline Plc kept pushing through smaller rises. About 400 formulations of brand-name drugs went up at least 9.9 percent since early December. Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc., which in recent months has been under fire for its pricing was among the most aggressive, with 13 drugs that doubled or more since December 2014.

Note: For more excellent information on drug prices hikes, read this penetrating article in the Daily Beast. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing big pharma profiteering news articles from reliable major media sources.


No More Exposés in North Carolina
2016-02-01, New York Times
Posted: 2016-02-14 09:55:07
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/01/opinion/no-more-exposes-in-north-carolina.h...

Factory farm operators believe that the less Americans know about what goes on behind their closed doors, the better. That’s because the animals sent through those factories often endure an unimaginable amount of mistreatment and abuse. Nearly always, this treatment comes to light only because courageous employees - or those posing as employees - take undercover video and release it to the public. The industry’s lobbyists have taken the opposite approach, pushing for the passage of so-called “ag-gag” laws, which ban undercover recordings on farms and in slaughterhouses. These measures have ... been enacted in eight [states]. None has gone as far as North Carolina, where a new law that took effect Jan. 1 aims to silence whistle-blowers not just at agricultural facilities, but at all workplaces in the state. That includes, among others, nursing homes, day care centers, and veterans’ facilities. Anyone who violates the law - say, by secretly taping abuses of elderly patients or farm animals and then sharing the recording with the media or an advocacy group - can be sued by business owners for bad publicity and be required to pay a fine of $5,000 for each day that person is gathering information. This is a clear violation of the constitutional freedoms of speech and the press, as ... argued in a federal lawsuit filed in January.

Note: This law was passed following the widely publicised release of video footage showing toxic cesspools around North Carolina farms. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corruption in government and in the corporate world.


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