The Market Ticker
Commentary on The Capital Markets- Category [Corruption]

Has the balloon gone up yet?

Really folks, when does it go up if it hasn't by now?  The latest is this little ditty:

An Arkansas lawyer representing current and former police officers in a contentious whistle-blower lawsuit is crying foul after finding three distinct pieces of malware on an external hard drive supplied by police department officials.

The attorney is suing the department on behalf of three officers who, it is alleged, were illegally investigated after reporting wage-and-hour violations along with wrongful terminations.

In response to his (lawful) discovery request the cop shop apparently loaded three pieces of malware on the drive they gave him with the responsive documents -- a password logger, a program allowing them to load additional software on the attorney's machine in the future and two separate back doors to allow access to his computer from outside.

Since these were placed on a directory that did not exist when the disk was provided to the cop shop it is essentially impossible that they were on the drive before he gave it to the police for them to copy their responsive documents to.

It appears, in other words, that in response to a lawsuit and lawful discovery demand the cops attempted to take control of the suing attorney's computer and steal his passwords, an act that is functionally identical to breaking into his office and stealing his files.

This is not a "police department", if in fact it did such things.  It is nothing other than a lawless band of criminals who attempted to commit breaking and entering along with intentionally corrupting the judicial process, a further crime.

This for all intents and purposes, assuming the allegations are correct, mob action exactly as the Mafia would undertake in days gone by (undertaken by modern means using technology instead of Guido and his infamous baseball bat to the legs.)

Forensics on this would be amusing, given that it should be trivially easy to discover exactly who put the files on the disk, from where and when, unless that evidence has been tampered within inside the department, in which case the audit logs will have been modified or deleted (and that's obvious too if it happened.)

When do you reach the point that you stand up, America, instead of continuing with your head in the sand bleating about how "it can't happen to me" and that "<insert favorite target> must have deserved it"?

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I have to admit this is a pretty impressive tax return.... and belies a simple question: Why would anyone "donate" to such a "charity"?

$144 million in direct contributions and grants; $149 million in total revenue (2013 numbers); of that $8.9 million went to grants paid (that is, about 5.9% of the funds that came in went to charitable causes.)

The rest was either "absorbed" (that is, the "charity" still has it) or was paid out in things like executive compensation.

You might be interested in knowing that the "charity" had 35 employees with reportable compensation (that is, over $100,000) and their top five combined had $2.6 million in direct (that is, cash) compensation and another $278,000 in benefits for approximately $3 million -- or 1/3rd of all spending on "charitable causes".  On a grossed-up basis the charity spent $21.8 million on salaries and wages or approaching three times what it spent on "charity."

In fact this "charity" spent as much on travel ($8.4 million) and more on conferences and similar confabs ($9.2 million) as it did on actual grants for charitable purposes.

What is this "charity"?

Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clintons so-called "charity" that was operating while Hillary was Secretary of State and continues to operate today.

Again, if you were not trying to buy influence of some sort exactly why would you donate to a so-called "charity" that only spends 5.9% of the money received on actual charitable programs?

Go ahead folks, tell me what possible motivation someone who is rich might have in "giving" to such a foundation when virtually none of your money is going to go to actual relief causes such as feeding poor people and helping disaster victims.

Oh by the way, that's not really much of a one-off either.  In 2012 (the previous tax year) the ratio of spending on charitable programs to "contributions" was just under 15%.

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Put a fork in her, she's...

smiley

Becker said his company went from "a worthless shell company overnight -- became this ...huge uranium mining deal."

And then soon after that, Becker said, "Bill Clinton got a huge donation, $31 million from Frank Guistra to his charitable foundation, followed by a pledge to donate $100 million more."

Oh boy..... I had heard $2.5 million, plus $300k in speaking fees.  $31 million?!

If this gets tagged on Billary it's over; she's going to be lucky to avoid an indictment.

President?  Good lord folks, even if you're a Democrat you better not support this level of apparent corruption!

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What do you call the cops when they commit crimes themselves?

The Justice Department and FBI have reportedly acknowledged that nearly every examiner in the FBI Laboratory’s microscopic hair comparison unit gave flawed testimony in almost all trials where they offered evidence against criminal defendants over more than 20-year period before 2000.

The Washington Post, citing information from the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Innocence Project, reports 26 of the 28 examiners overstated forensic matches in favor of prosecutors more than 95 percent of the 265 trials that were reviewed.

Watch your newsspeak!

It's not "flawed testimony", it's a lie and that lie has a name: Perjury.

False testimony is a crime, especially when you do it to intentionally favor one side over the other in a trial.  It's not a mistake, it's not an error, it's not an accident, it's a criminal offense.

When you take the stand or provide written testimony irrespective of the form you swear or affirm that what you are providing to the court is the truth in its entirety and without exception.

Claiming an alleged "fact" that is not supported by the evidence is not an error, it's a crime.

If the government is not going to follow the law, and is not going to be punished when they intentionally violate the law then please explain how those individuals and institutions are any different than Greedo.

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Sigh......

The majority of people taking antidepressants may not actually have depression, a new study claims.

Researchers discovered more than two-thirds (69 per cent) of people taking antidepressants did not meet the criteria for major depressive disorder, which is also known as clinical depression.

In other words these pills are handed out like candy and people take them despite not having the actual clinical condition for which they are designed.

There are many in the medical industry that argue that the "benefits outweigh the harms" and therefore this is ok.  I disagree; the benefit for someone taking a drug that does not have the condition the drug is intended to treat is zero; therefore, unless the prospect for harm is also zero, and it never is, the balance never, ever tips this way.

But it sure is profitable -- your money goes to the doctor, the pharmaceutical company and the drug store, along with everyone involved in supplying those firms -- the power company, the bank that financed the building, the receptionist in the doctor's office and so on and so on and so on.

So the harm here is not simply whether the drug does something evil to you (and sometimes it does); it's also the inevitable evil that is done to you in the form of your funds that are stolen under false pretense because you do not have the condition under which the drug would be useful.

Since when is using a false pretense to obtain money from you considered acceptable, America?

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