On Oct. 24, 2001, then-House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) shepherded the Patriot Act through the House of Representatives. It passed 357 to 66, advancing to the Senate and then-President George W.
Jerry Lampen / Reuters The flaws in China’s political system are obvious. The government doesn’t even make a pretense of holding national elections and punishes those who openly call for multiparty rule.
Power is now more evenly distributed in the international system. As a result, there is rising geopolitical competition among great powers. Shivshankar Menon lays out the several consequences of this increased competition.
As we head into the Memorial Day weekend, Buffy Sainte-Marie returns to the Democracy Now! studios. Her song "Universal Soldier" became one of the classic antiwar songs of the 1960s. Buffy Sainte-Marie once said, "It’s about individual responsibility for war and how the old feudal thinking kills us all." Buffy Sainte-Marie wrote the song in 1964. A year later, just months after U.S. ground forces invaded Vietnam, the British singer Donovan turned it into a hit. She has also written and sung about the struggles of Native American and First Nations people for decades. She worked with the American Indian Movement and began the Nihewan Foundation for American Indian Education. Her political activism would lead her to be largely blacklisted from commercial radio in the 1970s. On her new album, she re-records two songs from what’s become known as her "blacklist years." Five decades later, Buffy Sainte-Marie is still making powerful music. She has just released "Power in the Blood." It’s her first studio album since 2008.
WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) have been locked in a public feud over whether free trade agreements can be used to undermine the 2010 Wall Street reform law.
Monica S Mcfeeters's insight:
Do you know about the TPP deal that may happen in the very near future? It will impact all of us just like the NAFTA did and there is a deal lurking with Europe as well.
But the TPP would be different, according to congressional briefings by the U.S. Trade Representative, which are reflected in a December letter from Warren to Ambassador Michael Froman, the top Obama trade official. The TPP wouldn't just empower foreign governments to sue the U.S. over bank regulations; it would allow individual companies and investors to bring such cases.
Under the "investor-state dispute settlement" process, an international tribunal cannot overrule a law or regulation, but it can assess financial penalties to encourage countries to change said law or regulation. In the past, under other trade deals, the mere existence of such cases has sometimes pressured governments into abandoning non-financial services regulations.
Moreover, the TPP would reportedly allow foreign banks to sue the U.S. government for failing to provide them with a "minimum standard of treatment." The term is vaguely defined, but international tribunals have interpreted it very broadly to make corporations eligible to receive damages for lost profits caused by policy changes that occurred after they invested in a country. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) raised similar concerns in her own December letter to Froman over the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, a pending trade deal with Europe.
Pu Zhiqiang, who was arrested last year, faces charges of inciting hatred and provoking trouble that carry a lengthy prison sentence. He's among nearly 2,000 political activists detained since President Xi took power in 2012.
Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar who face persecution at home are making perilous boat crossings to Thailand and Malaysia, provoking strong reactions from regional governments. Thailand is a hub for human trafficking.
James Steidl/ Shutterstock/The Atlantic CINCINNATI—When they were deciding where to settle down and raise a family, Lorena Mora-Mowry, a lawyer from Venezuela, and her husband Paul, a mechanical engineer from California, performed extensive research.
Senator Mitch McConnell aligned with the president to push the deal, which would link 12 nations on either side of the Pacific into a trading bloc and expand the president’s trading authority. The legislation still requires House approval.
Monica S Mcfeeters's insight:
While we were celebrating heroes this weekend look who was undercutting the efforts of those that died for our freedom. I bunch of cowards, sneaks and vultures who seek to not let us have a voice. Just Saying!!!!! Mitch tried to slip in the vote on mass surveillance of citizen in renewing the Patriot Act as well this weekend...Give us a break Kentucky why didn't you ditch this guy!??? Just don't bother them with your wishes as citizens while their big multinational donors own them. VOTE THEM OUT AND TAKE OUR BUSINESS TO COMPANIES THAT DON"T OVERCHARGE US ENOUGH TO BUY THE GLOBE AND CORRUPT OUR POLITICIANS!!!!! PLEASE FOLKS LET'S WAKE UP!!! IS OBAMA A GOP TROJAN HORSE? THAT IS A VERY GOOD QUESTION!!!
A small shareholder group says Wal-Mart’s longtime auditor, Ernst & Young, knew about possible bribery in Mexico long before the company disclosed it to U.S. authorities, highlighting a little-plumbed area of U.S. anticorruption law.
CtW Investment Group, which works with union pension funds that hold about 0.15% of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. stock, made the claim in a letter last Thursday to the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, which oversees public companies’ outside accounting firms.
The letter cites an internal Wal-Mart email dated Feb. 27, 2006, that says employees in Wal-Mart’s Bentonville, Ark., headquarters “briefed Ernst & Young over the past several months,” along with some of the company’s directors, on an internal investigation into the possible bribery. It wasn’t until late 2011 that Wal-Mart disclosed its investigation to the Justice Department and Securities and Exchange Commission, according to the company’s securities filings.
CtW said in its letter that Ernst & Young likely should have reported the suspected bribery to the SEC and should be investigated by the accounting oversight board, because the acts under investigation and how the investigation was handled could have affected the retailer’s financial statements.
The challenge raises the question of external auditors’ responsibilities when their clients may have violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the tough U.S. antibribery law. If an outside auditor discovers a potentially illegal act, it generally is only expected to notify responsible authorities within the company, accounting and legal experts said. But it may be obliged to notify the government if the appropriate steps aren’t being taken and a company’s books may be compromised, they said.
CtW Investment Group’s Letter to Public Company Accounting Oversight Board Internal Wal-Mart email (Feb. 27, 2006) Ernst & Young, which has been Wal-Mart’s outside accountant for decades, said it couldn’t comment on matters involving its clients. Wal-Mart wouldn’t comment, saying the bribery investigation is ongoing. PCAOB and the SEC also declined to comment.
“You need to tell me what’s wrong with this trade agreement, not one that was passed 25 years ago,” a frustrated President Barack Obama recently complained about criticisms of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). He’s right. The public criticisms of the TPP have been vague. That’s by design—anyone who has read the...
Fayetteville Street in Raleigh, North Carolina, saved by ... cars? ( Wikimedia Commons ) If you’re joining us late: Fresno, California is determined to revive its struggling downtown by re-opening a fabled pedestrian-only mall to car traffic.
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