The Co-Op bank's £1.5 billion black hole will see 50 branches closed after the 'ethical' bank went cap in hand to hedge funds rescuers. In 1999 the Labour Party borrowed £3,580,000 from the bank an...
Culture, Humour, the Brave, the Foolhardy and the Damned
Culture, Humour, the Brave, the Foolhardy and the Damned.Disclaimer : this page is not intended for any specific nationality or jurisdiction. It is also not intended to solicit clients from any specific jurisdiction including the Republic of Mauritius inter alia.
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Congress and Hillary want grave-robbing to play a bigger role in tax revenue
Recently, Hillary Clinton announced her plans to levy a whopping 65% estate tax on households with a net worth of just $3.5 million. Cutting the threshold drastically from the current $5.45 million.
She’s not the first one either, with her plans closely matching a bill currently in congress.
This threshold drop would make a serious difference, because we’re not talking about $3.5 million in cash. We’re talking about net worth.
There are now 1.3 million households in the United States worth more than $5 million. And all the while inflation continues push more and more people into this category each year.
A modest family business, a suburban home, and a couple of decent cars could easily land a person in the range where their assets total more than $3.5 million, and would therefore have to be sold off upon their death in order to pay the government.
What this means:
How much wealth is exempted from the death tax, and what percentage is taken are both beside the point. The fact is that all the money being passed on after death has already been taxed when it was earned as income.
But with such a low exemption, this means small family businesses, and even farms are at risk of being dissected and confiscated by tax agents before they can transfer to the next generation.
Imagine the injustice of having to sell or dismantle a family business in order to hand over half of it to the government. A $5 million business is still pretty modest, especially when split between, say, three heirs. Yet even a business of that size would risk dissolution from the new Estate Taxes.
Government gag orders keep public in dark on unreasonable searches and seizures
Secret subpoenas and gag orders served to tech companies from the Justice Department are coming under fire, as tech companies are fighting for the rights of their customers and the public to know what is going on behind closed doors.
Microsoft along with many other tech companies have recently filed suit against the Justice Department arguing that it is a violation of the Fourth Amendment to restrict them from telling their customers what documents will be searched by the government and why. They also point out that gag orders clearly violate the First Amendment, by restricting the free speech of the companies who are served subpoenas for their customers' information.
Open Whisper Systems with the help of the ACLU successfully lifted part of a gag order from the Justice Department, which allowed them to explain to the public the government's attempt to demand user data from them.
The company which created the popular encrypted messaging app Signal, received a subpoena from the Justice Department in the first half of this year, demanding information about two phone numbers. The subpoena was accompanied by a gag order, which is why the specific date of the subpoena has not been published.
Open Whisper Systems and the ACLU have now published the documents from the government, and their response--something that could not have happened if the ACLU did not successfully get the original one year gag order partially lifted.
What this means:
But some gag orders have no expiration date. Who can tell how many companies have run into this issue, when they are legally forbidden from telling the public?
The government routinely restricts companies like microsoft, apple, and encryption providers from telling their customers or the public when a subpoena is issued for customer information. This means whoever is being investigated doesn't know.
Due process is going out the window and the biggest slap in the face comes when we are legally forbidden to talk about it. It is illegal to reveal the illegal activities of government.
Bait and Switch: Regulatory fallout from Wells-Fargo scandal will hurt small banks more
To pass the Dodd-Frank financial reforms, the government baited the public into being angry at the big banks, and then passed legislation that would give the big banks an edge against small competitors in the long run. All the costly regulations affected banks big and small.
But small banks don't have the personnel to deal with new regulations, and find ways around them, like Wells-Fargo does. It is easy for large banks who already have teams of lawyers who know how to comply with regulation to forge forward while still posting profits. But in addition to the costs of compliance for small banks, reworking their business model to remain viable after new regulations is not always such an easy feat.
And now, Wells-Fargo was caught creating fake accounts under customers' names without their knowledge or consent. But while Elizabeth Warren was grilling the CEO, he must have been hardly able to suppress his smile.
He knows any new regulations will just help destroy his small competitors; banks which might actually serve the needs of their customers honestly.
The big banks know that any new regulations because of their dishonesty will disproportionately hurt their small competitors. Wells-Fargo must pay $185 million in fines for wrongdoing. But these fines may pay dividends when the small banks and lenders are crushed under legislation that was meant to be the big banks' "punishment."
What this means:
Though Wells-Fargo must pay $185 million in fines to the government, they have only paid customers affected a total of $2.5 million in the form of returning fees collected due to the fake accounts they set up. Yet $100 million of the fine will go to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Civil Penalty Fund.
The Civil Penalty Fund was part of the Dodd-Frank legislation, and was set up to pay back victims of financial crimes. But if the agency has money left over, they can use it for their own purposes, including educating consumers. This education could be in the form of supporting new regulations, which end up helping the big banks. So did Wells-Fargo just simply pay $100 million for a marketing campaign to support legislation and regulation that will help kill their competitors?
Wells-Fargo will forge on, just as they did after Dodd-Frank, to find new ways to manipulate their customers. The small banks, however, could very well disappear with each new wave of regulation supposedly aimed at stopping Wells-Fargo from doing what they keep doing regardless. Consumers will be forced to deal with such shady big banks, having had their other options destroyed by regulation.
Source : sovereignman.com
The land of Liberty to become the Land of Hillary #socialistnightmare @investorseurope
SINGAPORE — A U.S. Coast Guard International Port Security team completed a bilateral engagement with Mauritius government port officials in November 2016.
"The three largest import categories were mineral fuels totaling $24 million, machinery totaling $7 million, and electrical machinery totaling $5 million. Additionally, in 2015, the U.S. exported more than $395 million in goods to Mauritius."
Indian Ladies Sangeet is considered a pastime in its land of birth but Bhojpuri-speaking communities in Mauritius have taken it to another level. They have popularised it so much that Unesco has added it to the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
"Geet-Gawai, or Bhojpuri folk songs in Mauritius, made it to the list on December 1, 2016. The folk songs first reached Mauritius 90 years ago with the arrival of Bhojpuri-speaking women. "
"Ofcom has extensive experience as a watchdog of commercial broadcasters, but the BBC’s status as a scandal magnet is unmatched in the industry. "
'Every time I’m in London I go out to the clubs – you don’t learn anything by sitting in your office,” says Charles Gibb.
" They are increasingly concerned about the authenticity and provenance of the brands they consume, he says."
Learning the local language is key to integration of immigrants. Should the state pick up the tab, as they're doing in one part of Switzerland?
" The women, in pairs, discuss eating and stress. There is lots of participation; the pupils are highly motivated."
The United States is becoming more liberal, despite what the election itself might suggest. Just look at the data.
"Even as the Electoral College votes today to make Trump president, the United States is becoming more liberal."
Britain faces being battered by high winds and heavy rain over the Christmas period, forecasters have warned.
"Forecasters are tracking the weather system a month after Storm Angus brought 80mph winds, heavy rain and flooding."
From companies whose fortunes are forecast to change for the better, to others predicted to maintain success, Telegraph writers offer their tips for the year ahead.
"Wm Morrison had a stellar 2016. Its shares rose 54pc. For that reason, one might consider avoiding the Bradford-based grocer this year."
Over the years, hundreds of people online have shared memories of a cheesy Nineties movie called “Shazaam”. There is no evidence that such a film was ever made. What does this tell us about the quirks of collective memory?
" In one crucial way, however, it is not. The movie that Don is referring to doesn’t actually exist."
Should you drink more coffee? Should you take melatonin? Can you train yourself to need less sleep? A physician’s guide to sleep in a stressful age.
"No matter what happened to my body, I never felt like it was dangerous for me to keep working. "
A consortium led by Mirae Asset Financial Group and UK-based investment firm Castlepines clinched a deal to finance more than 1 trillion won ($830 million) to build an oceans tourism resort complex at Gyeongdo in Yeosu, South Jeolla Province, Mirae Asset Global Investments said Monday.Park Hyeon-joo, chairman of Mirae Asset, signed an investment contract with South Jeolla Province Gov. Lee Nak-yon and Yeosu Mayor J
"South Jeolla Province expects that the consortium’s investment will create about 15,000 jobs and generate economic values in the region up to 1.7 trillion won, without giving a time frame."
"The Australian dollar has slipped as its US counterpart rebounded after strong non-farms payroll data and hawkish comments from US Federal Reserve officials."
Federal health minister – under fire over travel expenses claims – obtained finance before trip but it was not for a specific apartment, spokesman says
"The health minister remains under significant pressure after revelations she charged taxpayers almost $4,000 for a trip to the Gold Coast in 2015 during which she bought a luxury apartment."
Learn how utilizing Winshuttle to automate your SAP financial processes can help you get everything posted correctly and on time for a faster period close.
" The reasons for closing faster are endless, but the most common reason is that it allows finance teams to return to normal operations sooner rather than later."
"I really just want to thank Atlanta and all black folks in Atlanta — just for being alive and being amazing people," Glover said as he accepted the series' first award.
"Series creator and star Donald Glover accepted the award on behalf of the cast. Co-stars Brian Tyree Henry, Keith Stanfield and Zazie Beetz were among those who also took the stage."
Hera takes her rightful place as a champion of women. In my opinion this makes Hera not just a goddess for our time, but for all time.
"Amber – This is technically not a stone but a hard resin. Therefore it is also available is oil or paste form."
Doug Simon, president and CEO of D S Simon Media, interviews David Litt, former Obama speechwriter and head writer/producer at Funny Or Die on how to effectively employ humor in communications.
"At PR News' Media Relations Conference in December, Litt delivered a keynote address on using humor in speechwriting and in a social-dominated landscape."
Twitter has added new ways to fight harassment and hate speech on the social network by allowing users to block trolls that use abusive language.
"They will be able to select to mute a particular conversation by selecting the down arrow at the top right of tweets."
Learn valuable lessons from what the best and brightest brands are doing with their content marketing – Content Marketing Institute
"To inspire your business to make a little magic of its own, we’ve compiled 75 of our favorite content efforts into our latest e-book, 75 More Examples to Inspire Your Content Marketing Success."
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Le célèbre rocher de Macondé situé dans le Sud-Ouest de l’île Maurice est un bloc rocheux imposant qui empiète sur la mer entre Le Morne et baie du Cap. Un escalier en béton permet aux visiteur
"Le rocher de Macondé à l’île Maurice jouit d’une splendide vue sur la route en S et également sur le pittoresque virage en épingle."
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Ses clichés ont été publiés par les plus grandes plateformes médiatiques de la planète. Que ce soit dans les colonnes du Monde, Newsweek et Guardian ou encore sur les sites d’informations d’Al-Jazeera, de la BBC ou d’ABC News, Aurélie Marrier d’Unienville livre un regard intimiste sur les drames qui affligent l’Afrique et l’espoir de la population à des lendemains meilleurs.
Née à Maurice en 1985, Aurélie Marrier d’Unienville avait à peine deux ans lorsque son père décide d’investir dans une ferme dans le Kwa-Zulu Natal, au pays de Mandela. Papa étant photographe amateur, il passait son temps à prendre des clichés de ses enfants et c’est tout naturellement qu’elle a suivi ses traces.
Want to improve your social media images? Discover six tools for creating unique, professional-looking visuals for social media.
"Infographics are a must for your social media marketing."
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"Sailed: 4, Discards: 1, To count: 3, Entries: 124, Scoring system: Appendix A"
As India and its citizens continue to feel the aftermath of the unexpected and unprecedented demonetization event, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has pointed a silver lining – “less cash transactions and an increase in digital currency.”
"Speaking today, Indian finance Minister Arun Jaitley has opined that India will no longer see traditional cash numbers after the sweeping ban to render 86% of all cash in circulation obsolete, overnight, in early November."
Tough times for Romansh, Switzerland’s least-spoken national language, with the Romansh chair at the University of Zurich under threat.
"Virtually all of them live in Graubünden, in eastern Switzerland, the only canton where Romansh has official status."