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


Below are many highly revealing excerpts of important corporate corruption news stories reported in the major media that suggest a major cover-up. Links are provided to the full stories on their mainstream 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.


Corporate Corruption News stories


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.

New Merck Allegations: A Fake Journal; Ghostwritten Studies; Vioxx Pop Songs; PR Execs Harass Reporters
2009-04-23, CBS News
Posted: 2014-10-10 10:50:16
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/new-merck-allegations-a-fake-journal-ghostwritten...

Federal prosecutors in the U.S. will be reading with amusement the Australian press's coverage of a class action trial down under for patients who took Merck's now-withdrawn painkiller Vioxx. Details emerging in Oz make some of the antics that Merck's American counterparts got up to look tame by comparison. For example, in Australia, Merck allegedly: Had a doctor sign his name to an entirely ghostwritten journal article even though a Merck staffer had complained that the data within it was based on "wishful thinking;" created a fake "peer-reviewed" journal, the "Australasian Journal of Bone and Joint Medicine," in which to publicize pro-Vioxx articles; created a Ricky Martin-style pop song to get Merck sales reps all jazzed up about Vioxx; [and] hatched a Blackadder-style "cunning plan" to seed seminars with speakers who were sympathetic to Vioxx. Here's The Australian's description of the Merck PR team's over-the-top "handling" of reporters at ... a class action trial down under for patients who took Merck's now-withdrawn painkiller Vioxx: A hired crisis management team sits in court every day, under the guidance of Merck & Co's media spokeswoman flown out from the US, watching what journalists write, who they talk to and where they go in the court breaks. The team ... follow journalists out of court, ask them what they are writing, hand out daily press releases and send "background" emails they say should not be attributed to the company but which detail what they think are the "salient points" from the evidence presented in court. The team rings reporters first thing in the morning, accuses them of "cherry-picking" the evidence and bombards newspapers with letters to the editor arguing their case in detail based on the day's evidence - five were sent to The Australian in just seven days.

Note: FDA analysts estimated that Vioxx caused between 88,000 and 139,000 heart attacks, 30 to 40 percent of which were probably fatal, in the five years the drug was on the market. Read another CBS News article which shows how Merck literally created a hit list for doctors who opposed use of Vioxx. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing health corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.




Merck Created Hit List to 'Destroy,' 'Neutralize' or 'Discredit' Dissenting Doctors
2009-05-06, CBS News
Posted: 2014-10-10 10:44:43
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/merck-created-hit-list-to-destroy-neutralize-or-d...

Merck made a "hit list" of doctors who criticized Vioxx, according to testimony in a Vioxx class action case in Australia. According to The Australian, Merck emails from 1999 showed company execs complaining about doctors who disliked using Vioxx. The list, emailed between Merck employees, contained doctors' names with the labels "neutralise," "neutralised" or "discredit" next to them. One email said: We may need to seek them out and destroy them where they live. The plaintiffs' lawyer gave this assessment: "It gives you the dark side of the use of key opinion leaders and thought leaders. If (they) say things you don't like to hear, you have to neutralise them." The court was told that James Fries, professor of medicine at Stanford University, wrote to the then Merck head Ray Gilmartin in October 2000 to complain about the treatment of some of his researchers who had criticised the drug. "Even worse were allegations of Merck damage control by intimidation," he wrote. "This has happened to at least eight (clinical) investigators. I was mildly threatened myself, but I never have spoken or written on these issues." The allegations come on the heels of revelations that Merck created a fake medical journal -- the Australasian Journal of Bone and Joint Medicine -- in which to publish studies about Vioxx; had pop songs commissioned about Vioxx to inspire its staff, and paid ghostwriters to draft articles about the drug.

Note: FDA analysts estimated that Vioxx caused between 88,000 and 139,000 heart attacks, 30 to 40 percent of which were probably fatal, in the five years the drug was on the market. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing health corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.




Inside the Koch Brothers' Toxic Empire
2014-09-24, Rolling Stone
Posted: 2014-10-08 21:02:20
http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/inside-the-koch-brothers-toxic-empi...

Together, Charles and David Koch control one of the world's largest fortunes, which they are using to buy up our political system. The Kochs [have] cornered the market on Republican politics and are nakedly attempting to buy Congress and the White House. Koch-affiliated organizations raised some $400 million during the 2012 election, and aim to spend another $290 million to elect Republicans in this year's midterms. Koch ... is larger than IBM, Honda or Hewlett-Packard and is America's second-largest private company. Brothers Charles and David are each worth more than $40 billion. But what they don't want you to know is how they made all that money. The company's stock response to inquiries from reporters: "We are privately held and don't disclose this information." The company's troubled legal history – including a trail of congressional investigations ... civil lawsuits and felony convictions ... combine to cast an unwelcome spotlight on the toxic empire. The company has paid out record civil and criminal environmental penalties. According to the University of Massachusetts Amherst's Political Economy Research Institute, only three companies rank among the top 30 polluters of America's air, water and climate: ExxonMobil, American Electric Power and Koch Industries. Koch Industries dumps more pollutants into the nation's waterways than General Electric and International Paper combined. Koch has profited precisely by dumping billions of pounds of pollutants into our waters and skies. The Koch brothers get richer as the costs of what Koch destroys are foisted on the rest of us – in the form of ill health, foul water and a climate crisis that threatens life as we know it on this planet.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing corporate corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.




Monsanto gives $4.7M to Colorado campaign against GMO labeling
2014-09-30, Colorado Public Radio
Posted: 2014-10-08 20:49:28
http://www.cpr.org/news/story/monsanto-gives-47m-colorado-campaign-against-gm...

Monsanto is donating $4.7 million to the campaign to oppose GMO labeling in Colorado. The St. Louis-based agriculture company is a primary producer of genetically modified seeds. The No on 105 committee has raised almost $10 million through Sept. 24, with Pepsico and Kraft Foods also giving more than $1 million each. The group begins running TV ads against the initiative this week. Meanwhile, the supporters of the labeling initiative, Right to Know GMO, have raised about $323,000, including almost $120,000 in the most recent two weeks. That groups top donors are Food Democracy Action at $140,000 total and Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps at $25,000.

Note: In every election where GMO labeling was on the ballot, big industry has poured in many times more money that those in favor of disclosure. This is a very good example of how in the US, it is much more a democracy of every dollar gets one vote rather than every person gets one vote. For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.




Japan's Shinkansen Bullet Train Turns 50
2014-10-01, ABC News/Associated Press
Posted: 2014-10-08 20:45:07
http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/japans-shinkansen-bullet-train-...

Zipping cross-country in a super-high speed train has become commonplace in many countries these days, but it was unheard of when Japan launched its bullet train between Tokyo and Osaka 50 years ago Wednesday. The Shinkansen, as it's called in Japan, gave a boost to train travel in Europe and Asia at a time when the rise of the automobile and the airplane threatened to eclipse it. The first bullet train, with its almost cute bulbous round nose, traveled from Tokyo to Osaka in four hours, shaving two and a half hours off the 513-kilometer (319-mile) journey. The latest model, with a space-age-like elongated nose, takes just two hours and 25 minutes. The first Shinkansen had a maximum speed of 210 kilometers (130 miles) per hour. The fastest trains previously, in Europe, could reach 160 kph. Today's bullet trains, in Japan and elsewhere, have reached and in some cases exceeded 300 kph (186 mph). By average speed, China has the fastest train in the world, averaging 284 kph. Turkey last year became the ninth country to operate a train at an average speed of 200 kph. South Korea and Taiwan also operate high-speed systems in Asia. The fastest train in the U.S., Amtrak's Acela Express, averages 169 kph (105 mph) on a short stretch between Baltimore and Wilmington, Delaware. Shanghai launched a German-built maglev train in 2004 on a 30-kilometer route between the city and the airport. It can hit 430 kph (267 mph). A Japanese maglev train in development has topped 500 kph (310 mph) in tests.

Note: Gas and oil interests have lobbied hard to keep Americans wedded to their cars and stop the development of high-speed trains. For more on this, see this excellent article and concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on suppressed energy inventions from reliable major media sources.




Who profits from our new war? Inside NSA and private contractors’ secret plans
2014-09-24, Salon
Posted: 2014-09-26 12:30:36
http://www.salon.com/2014/09/24/heres_who_profits_from_our_new_war_inside_nsa...

A massive, $7.2 billion Army intelligence contract signed just 10 days ago underscores the central role to be played by the National Security Agency and its army of private contractors in the unfolding air war being carried out by the United States and its Gulf States allies against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. INSCOM’s “global intelligence support” contract will place the contractors at the center of this fight. Under its terms, 21 companies, led by Booz Allen Hamilton, BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, will compete over the next five years to provide “fully integrated intelligence, security and information operations” in Afghanistan and “future contingency operations” around the world. INSCOM announced the global intelligence contract two days after President Obama, in a speech to the nation, essentially declared war on ISIS in Iraq and Syria and outlined a campaign of airstrikes and combat actions to “degrade and ultimately destroy” the terrorist group. The top contractors on the INSCOM contract are already involved in the war. Lockheed Martin, for example, makes the Hellfire missiles that are used extensively in U.S. drone strikes. Northrop Grumman makes the Global Hawk surveillance drone. Both companies have large intelligence units. 70 percent of the U.S. intelligence budget is spent on private contractors. This spending [is] estimated at around $70 billion a year. [There is a] revolving door between INSCOM and its contractors. The system is corrupted by the close relationships between the companies and their agencies, said [Tom] Drake, who as a whistle-blower was nearly sent to prison for exposing the waste, fraud and abuse in a contracted program at the NSA that ended up losing over $7 billion.

Note: Read a powerful essay written by a top US general showing how he was fooled into supporting wars that were generated by the powerful global elite who want never-ending war in order to keep their profits flowing.




GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Fined $488.8 Million for 'Massive Bribery Network' in China
2014-09-19, ABC News
Posted: 2014-09-26 12:22:04
http://abcnews.go.com/International/glaxosmithkline-gsk-fined-4888-million-ma...

China has fined the British pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) $488.8 million (3 billion Yuan) for a "massive bribery network" to get doctors and hospitals to use its products. Five former employees were sentenced to two to four years in jail, but ordered deported instead of imprisoned, according to state news agency Xinhua today. The fine was the biggest ever imposed by a Chinese court. The court gave Mark Reilly, former head of GSK Chinese operations, a three-year prison sentence with a four-year reprieve, which meant he is set to be deported instead of serving his time in a Chinese jail. Reilly was accused of operating a “massive bribery network” in May. The police said it is believed Reilly authorized his salespeople to pay doctors, hospital officials and health institutions to use GSK’s products since 2009. Throughout 2012 a stream of anonymous emails alleging bribery authorized by senior staff at GSK were sent to Chinese regulators. At the beginning of 2013, the anonymous emails began to arrive at GSK headquarter in London, along with a sex tape of Mark Reilly and his Chinese girlfriend. The charges claim that GSK hired Shanghai-based investigator Peter Humphrey and his American wife, Yu Yingzeng, to locate the whistleblower. The Humphreys were detained and charged with illegally obtaining phone logs, travel records and other data which then they put in a report to GSK. GSK released a statement of apologies to the Chinese government and people on its website. "GSK Plc has reflected deeply and learned from its mistakes, has taken steps to comprehensively rectify the issues identified at the operations of GSKCI, and must work hard to regain the trust of the Chinese people," the statement said.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing health news articles from reliable major media sources.




30 Years Later, 2 Men's Convictions Overturned in Rape-Murder
2014-09-03, NBC News/Associated Press
Posted: 2014-09-26 12:18:12
http://www.nbcnews.com/id/55979430/ns/us_news/t/nc-mens-convictions-overturne...

One of North Carolina's longest-serving death-row inmates and his half brother are being freed after three decades in prison after another man's DNA was discovered on a cigarette butt left near the body of a girl the siblings were convicted of killing. On Tuesday, a judge overturned the convictions of Henry McCollum, 50, and Leon Brown, 46, in the 1983 rape and murder of Sabrina Buie, citing the new evidence that they didn't commit the crime. The ruling is the latest twist in a notorious legal case that began with what defense attorneys said were coerced confessions from two scared teenagers with low IQs. McCollum was 19 at the time and Brown was 15. Defense lawyers petitioned for their release after a recent analysis from the butt pointed to another man who lived near the soybean field where Buie's body was found in Robeson County. That man is already serving a life sentence for a similar rape and murder that happened less than a month later. The DNA from the cigarette butts doesn't match Brown or McCollum, and fingerprints taken from a beer can at the scene aren't theirs either, attorneys say. No physical evidence connects them to the crime. Ken Rose, a senior staff attorney at the Center for Death Penalty Litigation in Durham, has represented Henry McCollum for 20 years. "It's terrifying that our justice system allowed two intellectually disabled children to go to prison for a crime they had nothing to do with, and then to suffer there for 30 years," Rose said.

Note: How many thousands of innocent people have been executed or given life sentences like this? For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing prisons news articles from reliable major media sources.




NutraSweet to Stop Making Aspartame
2014-09-24, ABC News/Associated Press
Posted: 2014-09-26 12:12:35
http://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStory/nutrasweet-stop-making-aspartame-257...

NutraSweet says it will no longer make the artificial sweetener aspartame as a result of foreign competition. The privately held company said Wednesday it expects to shut down a major portion of a plant that employs about 210 workers, including contractors, by year-end as a result. That will leave it with only about 10 to 20 employees to focus on its two other smaller sweeteners, the company said. "Low-cost imports now dominate the aspartame market, making it impossible for us to sustain a profitable business while maintaining our unmatched standard of quality," NutraSweet CEO William DeFer said in a statement. Aspartame is more commonly known as the ingredient used in Equal, the blue packets of sweetener often found on tables at restaurants. NutraSweet spokesman Hud Englehart said the company started facing competition as a supplier of aspartame once its patents on the artificial sweetener expired.

Note: This article fails to mention anything about the serious risks and dangers of aspartame which have been exposed by top doctors and scientists. See the powerful documentary "Sweet Misery" on this which has saved many lives. For more on health corruption and manipulation, see concise summaries of deeply revealing health news articles from reliable major media sources.




Rockefellers, Heirs to an Oil Fortune, Will Divest Charity of Fossil Fuels
2014-09-21, New York Times
Posted: 2014-09-26 11:54:37
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/22/us/heirs-to-an-oil-fortune-join-the-divestm...

John D. Rockefeller built a vast fortune on oil. Now his heirs are abandoning fossil fuels. The family whose legendary wealth flowed from Standard Oil is planning to announce on Monday that its $860 million philanthropic organization, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, is joining the divestment movement that began a couple years ago on college campuses. In recent years, 180 institutions — including philanthropies, religious organizations, pension funds and local governments ... have pledged to sell assets tied to fossil fuel companies from their portfolios and to invest in cleaner alternatives. In all, the groups have pledged to divest assets worth more than $50 billion from portfolios. Some say they are taking action to align their assets with their environmental principles. Others want to shame companies that they believe are recklessly contributing to a warming planet. Ultimately ... their actions, like those of the anti-apartheid divestment fights of the 1980s, could help spur international debate, while the shift of investment funds to energy alternatives could lead to solutions to the carbon puzzle. At the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, there is no equivocation. The fund has already eliminated investments involved in coal and tar sands entirely while increasing its investment in alternate energy sources. The family has also engaged in shareholder activism with Exxon Mobil, the largest successor to Standard Oil. Members have met privately with the company ... in efforts to get it to moderate its stance on issues pertaining to the environment and climate change. They acknowledged that they have not caused the company to greatly alter its course.

Note: Read through a rich collection of energy news articles with inspiring and revealing news on energy developments. Then explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.




Who’s Paying the Pro-War Pundits?
2014-09-16, The Nation Magazine
Posted: 2014-09-23 19:39:23
http://www.thenation.com/article/181601/whos-paying-pro-war-pundits#

Retired General Anthony Zinni [has demanded] up to 10,000 American boots on the ground to battle ISIS. Retired General Jack [Keane has made] more vague demands, such as for “offensive” air strikes and the deployment of more military advisers to the region. Many of these former Pentagon officials [have a vested interest] as paid directors and advisers to some of the largest military contractors in the world. Ramping up America’s military presence in Iraq and directly entering the war in Syria, along with greater military spending more broadly, is a debatable solution to a complex political and sectarian conflict. But those goals do unquestionably benefit one player in this saga: America’s defense industry. Keane is a great example of this phenomenon. His think tank, the Institute for the Study of War, ... has provided the data on ISIS used for multiple stories by The New York Times, the BBC and other leading outlets. Keane has appeared on Fox News at least nine times over the last two months to promote the idea that the best way to stop ISIS is through military action—in particular, through air strikes deep into ISIS-held territory. Left unsaid during his media appearances ... are Keane’s other gigs: as special adviser to Academi, the contractor formerly known as Blackwater; as a board member to tank and aircraft manufacturer General Dynamics; a “venture partner” to SCP Partners, an investment firm that partners with defense contractors, including XVionics, an “operations management decision support system” company used in Air Force drone training; and as president of his own consulting firm, GSI LLC. Retired General Anthony Zinni, perhaps the loudest advocate of a large deployment of American soldiers into the region to fight IS, is a board member to BAE Systems’ US subsidiary, and also works for several military-focused private equity firms.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable major media sources.




The Artful Dodgers
2014-09-11, Time Magazine
Posted: 2014-09-23 19:30:58
http://time.com/3326573/the-artful-dodgers/

Corporations in the U.S. today are hoarding about $2 trillion in profits overseas, arguing that the U.S. corporate tax rate of 35% makes it too difficult to bring this cash home and invest it here–better to keep the money abroad and pay lower taxes in other countries. Yet the truth is that legions of tax lawyers make sure that most big American corporations never pay anywhere close to that rate. FORTUNE 500 companies on average pay more like 19.4%, and a third pay less than 10%, chiefly because of all the generous loopholes Congress has afforded corporations over the years. Partly as a result, U.S. firms are enjoying record profit margins, making more money than ever before yet paying a lower share of the overall U.S. tax pie than they have in decades. They want the benefits of U.S. talent and markets but not the responsibilities. Taxpayer-funded, early-stage investments in areas like the Internet, transportation and health care research are the reason many of the largest U.S. companies got so big and successful to begin with. As the academic Mariana Mazzucato argues in her excellent book The Entrepreneurial State: Debunking Public vs. Private Sector Myths, many of the most lauded corporate innovations, including the parts of smartphones that make them smart (Internet, GPS, touchscreen display and voice recognition), came out of state-funded research. Ditto any number of pharmaceutical, biotech and cybersecurity innovations. “In so many cases, public investments have become business giveaways, making individuals and their companies rich but providing little return to the economy or the state,” says Mazzucato. Tax [dodges] that expatriate the gains of American corporations to enrich a tiny managerial caste symbolize a whole new genre of selfish capitalism.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing corporate corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.




The U.S. Government’s Secret Plans to Spy for American Corporations
2014-09-05, The Intercept
Posted: 2014-09-15 07:09:21
https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/09/05/us-governments-plans-use-econom...

Throughout the last year, the U.S. government has repeatedly insisted that it does not engage in economic and industrial espionage, in an effort to distinguish its own spying from China’s infiltrations of Google, Nortel, and other corporate targets. [But] the NSA was caught spying on plainly financial targets such as the Brazilian oil giant Petrobras; economic summits; international credit card and banking systems; the EU antitrust commissioner investigating Google, Microsoft, and Intel; and the International Monetary Fund and World Bank. In response, the U.S. modified its denial to acknowledge that it does engage in economic spying, but unlike China, the spying is never done to benefit American corporations. But a secret 2009 report issued by [Director of National Intelligence James Clapper's] office explicitly contemplates doing exactly that. The document, the 2009 Quadrennial Intelligence Community Review—provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden—is a fascinating window into the mindset of America’s spies. One of the principal threats raised in the report is a scenario “in which the United States’ technological and innovative edge slips”— in particular, “that the technological capacity of foreign multinational corporations could outstrip that of U.S. corporations.” How could U.S. intelligence agencies solve that problem? The report recommends “a multi-pronged, systematic effort to gather open source and proprietary information through overt means, clandestine penetration (through physical and cyber means), and counterintelligence”.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing intelligence agency operations news articles from reliable major media sources.




Elizabeth Warren: The market is broken
2014-09-05, CNN
Posted: 2014-09-15 07:07:22
http://money.cnn.com/2014/09/05/news/economy/elizabeth-warren-market-broken/i...

Senator Elizabeth Warren ... believes the most important [problem] to solve is how to get the American economy working for someone other than billionaires. It's a message she's been taking all over the country, and she isn't afraid to call banks, credit card companies and some employers cheats and tricksters. "The biggest financial institutions figured out they could make a lot of money by cheating people on mortgages, credit cards and payday loans," she told a packed auditorium at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, where she spoke alongside New York Times columnist Paul Krugman. The biggest applause of the night was on three issues that come up frequently in Warren's speeches. 1) Financial regulation: Warren was the driving force behind the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau after the 2008 financial crisis. The agency has returned billions of dollars to Americans who were wronged. 2) Reducing student loans: Last summer Warren made headlines for arguing that student loans should have the same interest rates that banks get when they borrow money from the Federal Reserve. As she likes to remind people, "Student loans issued from 2007 to 2012 are on target to produce $66 billion in profit for the United States government." 3) Raising the minimum wage: "No one should work full time and still live in poverty," Warren said. Her other big push is for basic worker rights.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing income inequality news articles from reliable major media sources.




US telecom giants call on FCC to block cities' expansion of high-speed internet
2014-08-29, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2014-09-09 06:43:06
http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/aug/29/us-telecoms-fcc-block-high-sp...

The US telecom industry called on the Federal Communications Commission ... to block two cities’ plans to expand high-speed internet services to their residents. USTelecom, which represents telecom giants Verizon, AT&T and others, wants the FCC to block expansion of two popular municipally owned high-speed internet networks. Chattanooga has the largest high-speed internet service in the US, offering customers access to speeds of 1 gigabit per second – about 50 times faster than the US average. The service, provided by municipally owned EPB, has sparked a tech boom in the city and attracted international attention. EPB is now petitioning the FCC to expand its territory. Comcast and other companies have previously sued unsuccessfully to stop EPB’s fibre optic roll out. Wilson [North Carolina], a town of a little more than 49,000 people, launched Greenlight, its own service offering high-speed internet, after complaints about the cost and quality of Time Warner cable’s service. Time Warner lobbied the North Carolina senate to outlaw the service and similar municipal efforts. In January this year, the FCC issued the “Gigabit City Challenge”, calling on providers to offer gigabit service in at least one community in each state by 2015. The challenge has come amid intense lobbying from cable and telecoms firms to stop municipal rivals and new competitors including Google from building and expanding high speed networks.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing corporate corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.




What Halliburton's $1.1 Billion Spill Settlement Means for BP
2014-09-02, Bloomberg Businessweek
Posted: 2014-09-09 06:41:13
http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-09-02/what-halliburtons-1-dot-1-bil...

Halliburton has wrapped up most of its lingering liability for the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill with a $1.1 billion settlement announced on [September 2]. The pact will resolve accusations that Halliburton’s cement work on the ill-fated Macondo well contributed to a disaster that killed 11 rig workers and spewed millions of barrels of crude into the gulf. First off, the timing of the settlement announcement may signal that U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier is nearing a decision on the Big Question of how to apportion overall blame for the spill—and, more specifically, what kind of additional legal bill faces BP as the main operator of the well. The British company has already paid out more than $28 billion and faces additional liability that could total an additional tens of billions. The $1.1 billion settlement represents Halliburton’s biggest payout yet in the disaster. Transocean, owner of the drilling rig, settled a batch of claims last year for $1.4 billion. Beyond settlement payouts, the Gulf spill litigation is costing the various companies implicated in the disaster enormous legal fees—or, more precisely, it’s costing their insurance carriers large amounts. Prior to settlement, Halliburton had incurred fees and expenses of $294 million, $263 million of which was covered by insurance, according to a filing in July. Halliburton had set aside reserves of $1.3 billion for costs related to the spill.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing corporate corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.




Microsoft Admits Keeping $92 Billion Offshore to Avoid Paying $29 Billion in U.S. Taxes
2014-08-22, International Business Times
Posted: 2014-09-02 11:02:40
http://www.ibtimes.com/microsoft-admits-keeping-92-billion-offshore-avoid-pay...

Microsoft Corp. is currently sitting on almost $29.6 billion it would owe in U.S. taxes if it repatriated the $92.9 billion of earnings it is keeping offshore, according to disclosures in the company’s most recent annual filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company says it has "not provided deferred U.S. income taxes" because it says the earnings were generated from its "non-U.S. subsidiaries” and then "reinvested outside the U.S.” Tax experts, however, say that details of the filing suggest the company is using tax shelters to dodge the taxes it owes as a company domiciled in the United States. The disclosure in Microsoft’s SEC filing lands amid an intensifying debate over the fairness of U.S.-based multinational corporations using offshore subsidiaries and so-called "inversions" to avoid paying American taxes. Such maneuvers -- although often legal -- threaten to significantly reduce U.S. corporate tax receipts during an era marked by government budget deficits.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing corporate corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.




Goldman to Pay $3.15 Billion to Settle Mortgage Claims
2014-08-22, New York Times
Posted: 2014-09-02 11:01:14
http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/08/22/goldman-to-pay-3-15-billion-to-settle-...

Goldman Sachs is paying its largest bill yet to resolve a government lawsuit related to the financial crisis. The bank said ... that it had agreed to buy back $3.15 billion in mortgage bonds from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to end a lawsuit filed in 2011 by the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the federal regulator that oversees the two mortgage companies. The agency had accused Goldman of unloading low-quality mortgage bonds onto Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the run-up to the financial crisis. It estimates that Goldman is paying $1.2 billion more than the bonds are now worth. Most of the other 18 banks that faced similar suits from the housing agency have already reached settlements. The previous settlements have included penalties, which Goldman avoided. But Goldman had been hoping to avoid settling the suit altogether, contending as recently as last month that many of the government’s claims should be dismissed. The $1.2 billion figure carries a sting because it is double the $550 million payment that Goldman made in 2010 to settle the most prominent crisis-era case it has faced — the so-called Abacus case. Since then, Goldman has largely avoided the billion-dollar penalties paid by other banks for wrongdoing before the 2008 crisis. This week, Bank of America reached a $16.65 billion settlement with the Justice Department related to the bank’s handling of shoddy mortgages. In a separate deal this year, Bank of America agreed to pay $9.5 billion to settle its part of the housing finance agency’s lawsuit. Some of that money was a penalty and the rest was used to buy back mortgage bonds.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing financial corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.




Seeds of Doubt
2014-08-25, The New Yorker
Posted: 2014-08-25 08:12:27
http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2014/08/25/seeds-of-doubt

[Vandana] Shiva’s fiery opposition to globalization and to the use of genetically modified crops has made her a hero to anti-G.M.O. activists everywhere. At each stop [on a recent European tour], Shiva delivered a message that she has honed for nearly three decades: by engineering, patenting, and transforming seeds into costly packets of intellectual property, multinational corporations such as Monsanto, with considerable assistance from the World Bank, the World Trade Organization, the United States government, and even philanthropies like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, are attempting to impose “food totalitarianism” on the world. She describes the fight against agricultural biotechnology as a global war against a few giant seed companies on behalf of the billions of farmers who depend on what they themselves grow to survive. Shiva contends that nothing less than the future of humanity rides on the outcome. Shiva, along with a growing army of supporters, argues that the prevailing model of industrial agriculture, heavily reliant on chemical fertilizers, pesticides, fossil fuels, and a seemingly limitless supply of cheap water, places an unacceptable burden on the Earth’s resources. The global food supply is indeed in danger. Feeding the expanding population without further harming the Earth presents one of the greatest challenges of our time, perhaps of all time. By the end of the century, the world may well have to accommodate ten billion inhabitants. Sustaining that many people will require farmers to grow more food in the next seventy-five years than has been produced in all of human history.

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




Oil a key motive for U.S. air strikes in Iraq
2014-08-12, San Francisco Chronicle (SF's leading newspaper)
Posted: 2014-08-18 07:44:20
http://www.sfgate.com/business/bottomline/article/Oil-a-key-motive-for-U-S-ai...

This week's U.S. air strikes in northern Iraq are being accompanied with an undertow of "it's all about oil" talk. Take for example, Columbia School of Journalism Dean Steve Coll's observation in The New Yorker, that "Obama's defense of Erbil (capital of the semiautonomous Kurdish region) is effectively the defense of an undeclared Kurdish oil state." It's no secret that Iraqi Kurdistan has an abundance of oil reserves, nor that U.S. oil companies, like [Chevron] are busy exploring there. Chevron has three "production sharing contracts" with the Kurdish government, covering a combined 444,000 acres, north of Irbil, where it's in the early testing and drilling stage. And it likes what it sees. Asked for an update, a Chevron spokesman said Monday, "We continue monitoring the situation. We remain in regular contact with the Kurdistan Regional Government and are dedicated to supporting the (Kurdistan Region of Iraq) in developing its natural resources." A potentially bigger worry for both Chevron and the Kurds .. could be if Iraq did stabilize and unite, with Kurdistan under its umbrella. For Chevron ... a new arrangement in Iraq could entail the renegotiation of contracts it has with the Kurds, which by the way, Baghdad refused to recognize. Kurdistan's oil pipeline via Turkey continues to pump out oil - 120,000 barrels per day.

Note: For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing military corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.





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