Department of Justice
"The Department disagrees with the Fifth Circuit’s adverse ruling and intends to seek further review from the Supreme Court of the United States."
One of the primary “talking points” used by the Department of Justice to defend its practice of systematically deeming corporate criminals above the law via its used of deferred prosecution agreements, has been an emphasis on how much money it has earned in fines from criminal corporations. These fines were supposed to be distributed to help victimized American citizens. Not any more.
One of the greatest hoaxes ever perpetrated upon Americans at the time of its telling and which is still trumpeted to this very day is the notion that the U.S. Constitution contains within its framework mechanisms which limit its power. The “separation of powers,” where power is distributed among the three branches – legislative, executive, judicial – is supposedly the primary check on the federal government’s aggrandizement. This week, once again, this sacred held tenet of American political history has once again been disproved.
Following the first ever congressional hearing on “Stingray” cellphone surveillance, new details reveal the Secret Service and the Internal Revenue Service are also using the controversial spying devices.
Accounting fraud remains at the heart of the fix instituted by Ben Bernanke and the ploy has been copied by authorities throughout the global financial system, including the central banks of China, Japan, and the European Community. That it seemed to work for the past seven years in propping up global finance has given too many people the dangerous conviction that reality is optional in economic relations. The recovery of equity markets from the disturbances of August has apparently convinced the market players that stocks are invincible. Complacency reigns at epic levels. Few are ready for what is coming.
Confirming once again that the U.S. has full devolved into banana republic, moments ago CNN reported that the US Department of "Justice" is closing its two-year investigation into whether the IRS improperly targeted tea party and other conservative groups. There will be no charges against former IRS official Lois Lerner or anyone else at the agency, the Justice Department said in a letter.
If you believe in and exercise your rights under the Constitution (namely, your right to speak freely, worship freely, associate with like-minded individuals who share your political views, criticize the government, own a weapon, demand a warrant before being questioned or searched, or any other activity viewed as potentially anti-government, racist, bigoted, anarchic or sovereign), you have just been promoted to the top of the government’s terrorism watch list.
Michael Wang: too Asian and too perfect for the Ivy League schools. This is a typical example of modern-day socialism’s drive to allegedly “equalize opportunity”, a heading under which the incentive to make an effort to actually accomplish something in life is slowly but surely deadened among those showing the best abilities. Over time, it leads to decay in the population’s morals and intelligence, until you end up with a nation best compared to a ship of fools.
"The market does not appear to be discounting negative knock-on effects. The outcome for recall costs and fines is unclear and largely depends on the engine performance post repair," said a Credit Suisse analyst in its report on the scandal. Estimates from Credit Suisse peg the costs of Dieselgate at a worst-case scenarios of $87 billion. This would make the VW scandal could be even bigger than Enron Scandal and BP Deepwater Scandal combined.
In a year when the nation’s overall prison population dropped, the number of older inmates grew rapidly in 2014, continuing a trend that translates into higher federal and state prison health care spending.
"Thanks to President Obama’s leadership and the determination and sacrifice of the American people, we’ve worked our way out of that ditch and put our economy on sounder footing. Now we have to keep going.
To prevent irresponsible behavior on Wall Street from ever again devastating Main Street, we need more accountability, tougher rules and stronger enforcement. I have a plan to build on the progress we’ve made under President Obama and do just that."
- Asian shares rise on fading Fed rate views (Reuters)
- U.S. Equity Futures Fall, Risking S&P 500 Rally as Copper Slides (BBG)
- More biotech pain, this time from the WSJ: For Prescription Drug Makers, Price Increases Drive Revenue (WSJ)
- VW Will Delay or Cancel Non-Essential Investments Due to Scandal (BBG)
- Russia Rejects No-Fly Zone Over Syria as Clerics Urge Reprisals (BBG)
- Historic Pacific trade deal faces skeptics in U.S. Congress (Reuters)
- German Factory Orders Unexpectedly Fall Amid Economic Risks (BBG)
"The think tanks do not disclose the terms of the agreements they have reached with foreign governments. And they have not registered with the United States government as representatives of the donor countries, an omission that appears, in some cases, to be a violation of federal law, according to several legal specialists who examined the agreements at the request of The Times... As a result, policy makers who rely on think tanks are often unaware of the role of foreign governments in funding the research."
Unfortunately, we are used to politicians saying whatever they think they need to say to be elected president, and falling way short of their campaign promises on the job. Even scarier would be the notion of selling America to the craftiest bidder. The election may be more than a year away, but isn’t it time to dig beneath the carefully crafted persona that is Trump and unearth the person and the full spectrum of his business dealings? To see the real Donald Trump is to plunge into all the conflicts of interest he denies, the financial tricks he dispenses, the crucial details he obfuscates, and the flimflam he offers up day in, day out.
Q. Should somebody have gone to jail.
Bernanke: Yeah, yeah I think so. It would have been my preference to have more investigation of individual actions as obviously everything that went wrong, or was illegal, was done by some individial not by an abstract firm.