Federal prosecutors in Philadelphia have seized a container ship operated by the Mediterranean Shipping Co., weeks after authorities found more than $1 billion worth of cocaine on the vessel in what was one of the largest drug busts in American history.
US Customs and Border Protection seized the ship on July 4, a statement out Monday said. The ship is owned by client assets in a maritime strategy offered by JPMorgan Asset Management, according to a person familiar with the matter. It is operated by the Switzerland-based MSC.
On June 17, border agents found 39,525 pounds of cocaine stashed in several containers on the MSC Gayane at the Philadelphia seaport. The street value of the drugs was estimated at about $1.3 billion, making it the largest cocaine seizure by the agency.
Workers at the company will be splitting $2 million between them. The sum is paltry compared to $56 million in fees awarded to Kirkland & Ellis, the law firm representing Toys ‘R’ Us.
A bankruptcy judge on Thursday approved the settlement to a class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of 33,000 former Toys ‘R’ Us workers which will see each of them receive about $60.
Minnesota attorney general finds that less than 1 percent of donations to Kars4Kids charity goes to Minnesota kids–most of the money promotes Orthodox Judaism among children on the east coast (startribune.com)
Published on Jan 4, 2019
The toughest challenge facing China isn’t a trade conflict or any other kind of outside enemy, it is a moral crisis from within…
“So what is the problem? If it’s not a problem for $21 trillion to go missing from DOD and HUD, and, [if] it’s possible [for the government] to come up with more than $20[plus] trillion to give or loan to the banks [in a bailout] — when there is no legal obligation to do so, and, when we [the government] can transfer trillions of the most valuable technology in the world to private corporations at zero cost to them and [at] great cost to the taxpayers, [then] I assure you that fixing whatever pension fund problem there is, is not difficult. However, the political will must exist and want to. That is the problem.”
“If we can print money to give $20 trillion [plus] to the banks, and, [if we can] let $21 trillion go missing from the federal government, [then] why is it a problem to print $5 trillion to fund the pension funds?”
Failing pension funds are on the hook for $5 trillion (see also this short article from 2010), and the federal government has no answer? Well, that is a supreme con job, because, as Fitts points out, the government is playing far larger money games without a shred of concern.
And this is just the beginning of the rabbit hole Fitts has been traveling for the past several decades. Here is her basic position: Prosperity for the many, not the few, is eminently possible and doable.
French and Israeli media report that a group largely made up of Israelis scammed 3,000 French citizens out of approximately $20 million. Most of the stolen money is in Israel, but Israeli authorities are reportedly failing to cooperate with France in prosecuting the scammers and retrieving the money.
This is the latest of numerous examples of Israeli officials stone-walling international efforts against the perpetrators of massive financial swindles around the world, according to Israeli investigative journalists and others. These scams have brought estimated billions into the Israeli economy, propping up a regime widely condemned for human rights abuses and ethnic cleansing against indigenous Palestinians. Together, the stories paint a picture of a government that seems to be turning a blind eye to – and even protecting – scammers.
A Finance Magnates analysis reports that one of the swindles alone has brought in over a billion dollars and employs 5,000 people. And a new scam, described below, may help what is predicted to be “the next major driver of the Israeli economy.”
A former IRS expert on international crime notes that “fraudulent industries are often major economic drivers, and that can translate into political clout.”
Some Israeli journalists have been working to expose the situation in Israeli newspapers, publishing exposés like “As Israel turns blind eye to vast binary options fraud, French investigators step in” and “Are French Jewish criminals using Israel as a get-out-of-jail card?” (Short answer: yes.)
Victimizing French business owners & churches
The victims of the recent scam against French citizens included churches and the owners of small businesses – delicatessens, car repair shops, hair salons, plumbers, etc. Some lost their life savings and describe being threatened and intimidated by the scammers.
Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa made a dramatic announcement this month that almost nobody in America paid any attention to. Grassley released a statement saying that four years ago, he asked the Intelligence Community Inspector General to release two “Congressional Notifications” written by former CIA Director John Brennan and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.
Grassley had had his requests to declassify the documents ignored repeatedly throughout the last two years of the Obama administration. He decided to try again because all of the Obama people at the CIA and DNI are gone now. This time, his request was approved.
So what was the information that was finally declassified? It was written confirmation that John Brennan ordered CIA hackers to intercept the emails of all potential or possible intelligence community whistleblowers who may have been trying to contact the Congressional oversight committees, specifically to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Simply put, Brennan ordered his people to hack into the Senate email system—again. Grassley is the longtime chairman of Judiciary Committee, and he was understandably appalled.
First, let me explain what a Congressional Notification is. The CIA is required by law to inform the Congressional oversight committees whenever one of its officers, agents, or administrators breaks the law, when an operation requires Congressional approval because it is a “covert action” program, or whenever something happens at the CIA that’s potentially controversial and the Agency wants to save itself the embarrassment of explaining itself to Congress later.
Brennan apparently ordered his officers to spy on the Senate. Remember, back in 2014 his officers spied on Intelligence Community investigators while they were writing the Senate Torture Report. This time, he decided to inform Congress.
But Brennan and Clapper classified the notification. It was like a taunt. “Sure, I’m spying on Congress, which is illegal. But it’s classified, so what are you going to do about it?”
Grassley went through the proper channels. And even though Brennan and Clapper essentially gave him the middle finger, he didn’t say anything until the documents were finally declassified. He’s a bigger man than I.
Flashback to June 26, 2011: The New York Times published an article written by Ian Urbana, that was supposed to reveal professional opinions about fracking by anonymous experts or officials at the Energy Information Agency or the EIA that were in opposition to public statements made by the government agency. In his article, Urbana cited anonymous senior officials in the EIA who discredited the shale oil industry. The problem is, those senior officials never existed, the anonymous “senior officials” ended up being an intern at the EIA, who Urbana used in his article to push an anti-shale agenda.
Here is a portion of the article published by the New York Times (The red print indicates the portions of the article where Urbana used quotes from anonymous sources that turned out to be an intern at the EIA):
One official says the shale industry may be “set up for failure.” “It is quite likely that many of these companies will go bankrupt,” a senior adviser to the Energy Information Administration administrator predicts. Several officials echo concerns raised during previous bubbles, in housing and in technology stocks , for example, that ended in a bust.
Energy Information Administration employees also explain in e-mails and documents, copies of which were obtained by The New York Times , that industry estimates might overstate the amount of gas that companies can affordably get out of the ground.
The American Civil Liberties Union will weigh its interest in protecting the First Amendment against its other commitments to social justice, racial equality, and women’s rights, given the possibility that offensive speech might undermine ACLU goals.
“Our defense of speech may have a greater or lesser harmful impact on the equality and justice work to which we are also committed,” wrote ACLU staffers in a confidential memo obtained by former board member Wendy Kaminer.
It’s hard to see this as anything other than a cowardly retreat from a full-throated defense of the First Amendment.