FunK MainStream Media News | Alternative Liberty News Sources Online Alternative Liberty News Portal Wed, 16 Jan 2019 06:46:05 +0000 en-US hourly 1 FunK MainStream Media News | Alternative Liberty News Sources 32 32 Law Enforcement to Clamp Down on Human Trafficking for Super Bowl 53 Wed, 16 Jan 2019 06:46:04 +0000 Continue reading Law Enforcement to Clamp Down on Human Trafficking for Super Bowl 53]]>

Super Bowl 53 Law Enforcement to Crack Down on Human Trafficking

1/15/2019 4:25 PM PST


Federal agencies and Atlanta authorities are on high alert to crack down on human trafficking in the wake of the Super Bowl … TMZ has learned.

Law enforcement sources tell us … the FBI, ICE, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the Fulton County Sheriff and other local authorities will be out in force in the 10 days leading up to the big game … on the hunt for human traffickers and their victims.

The mission, we’re told, is two-fold — looking for traffickers who are bringing sex workers into ATL and traffickers who are preying on ATL residents. We’re told law enforcement believes the majority of the victims who can be recruited are minors, both girls and boys.

We’re told law enforcement will be coordinating raids and undercover stings — along with normal patrols of areas known for sex trafficking — in order to take down pimps and johns engaging in illegal activity.

Law enforcement will also enlist local media, businesses and schools to put the word out and report any suspicious activity online … part of the “See Something, Send Something” initiative. We’re told authorities will post this sign around the City. 

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Anyone who says they ‘respect the public vote’ probably doesn’t|Humor Wed, 16 Jan 2019 03:28:05 +0000 Continue reading Anyone who says they ‘respect the public vote’ probably doesn’t|Humor]]> Respecting the outcome of a referendum is starting to sound a lot like respecting the sanctity of marriage – more of a guideline than an actual rule. It sounds very impressive at the time, but is a lot less sincere when you are found, a month later, in bed with your sister-in-law, the local priest and a lubricated ferret.

Instead, ‘respecting the public vote’ seems to be a coded message for ‘the electorate are a bunch of f$ ckwits, but I’m too afraid to say it’. A more accurate statement would be ‘I love democracy, as long as it does what I want it to’.

Those who were most vocal about accepting a democratic outcome in 2016, seem to be the most vociferous proponents of a second, third or even fourth ballot. Just as many elections as it takes to secure the appropriate outcome and not one vote more.

A friend of Chuka Umunna explained: ‘The key to listening to voters, is to do so with gritted teeth and an insincere smile. Yes, we can all be guilty of duplicity and of patronizing the electorate – but it’s all done with the greatest of respect’.

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Citi says chance of delay to Brexit now 'very high' Tue, 15 Jan 2019 22:10:05 +0000 Continue reading Citi says chance of delay to Brexit now 'very high']]>

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Citibank is pictured at an exhibition hall in Bangkok, Thailand, May 12, 2016. REUTERS/Athit Perawongmetha

LONDON (Reuters) – U.S. investment bank Citi (C.N) said on Tuesday there is now a “very high” chance that Brexit will be delayed past March 29, after lawmakers defeated Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit divorce deal by a crushing margin.

“After tonight’s emphatic rejection, small tweaks won’t get the deal over the line,” economists from Citi said.

“The probability of Article 50 extension is now very high, and the stock of Article 50 revocation is rising too,” they added, referring to the legal mechanism that triggered the exit process.

Reporting by Andy Bruce; editing by Guy Faulconbridge

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Nairobi Dusit hotel under attack as blasts and gunfire heard Tue, 15 Jan 2019 14:33:04 +0000 Continue reading Nairobi Dusit hotel under attack as blasts and gunfire heard]]>

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A hotel complex is under attack in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.

At least two blasts and gunfire were heard at the compound in the Westland district of the city, which houses the Dusit hotel as well as offices.

The Somali-based militant group al-Shabab claimed the attack but gave no details. Four armed men entered the complex, eyewitnesses say.

People are leaving the site escorted by heavily armed officers. One man was led out with a gunshot wound in the back.

The BBC’s Ferdinand Omondi says the head of Kenya’s Directorate of Criminal Investigations, George Kinoti, is leading the rescue operation.

Vehicles are on fire in the car park. Medics are at the scene.

A woman working in a neighbouring building told Reuters news agency: “I just started hearing gunshots, and then started seeing people running away raising their hands up and some were entering the bank to hide for their lives.”

Kenya has seen a number of terror attacks in recent years – most notably in areas close to the Somali border and in the country’s capital.

In September 2013, al-Shabab militants entered the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi and targeted shoppers using guns.

During an 80-hour siege at the upscale centre, 67 people were killed.

Two years later, the group carried out its deadliest ever assault in Kenya, shooting dead almost 150 people at Garissa University.

Al-Shabab, a militant Somali Islamist group, opposes the Somali government but has also carried out attacks throughout East Africa.

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Apple’s Tax Tactics Deserve Defending, Not Shaming Tue, 15 Jan 2019 14:31:03 +0000 Continue reading Apple’s Tax Tactics Deserve Defending, Not Shaming]]>

Employees of Apple “should be humiliated and ashamed” because of the iPhone company’s “clearly sleazy” decision to minimize its corporate taxes, New York Times columnist David Brooks claims.

“The Apple corporation exists because of American institutions,” Brooks writes, complaining that “Apple parked its intellectual property in an Irish subsidiary so it could avoid paying taxes in America and support those institutions. It saved $ 9 billion in 2012 alone.”

The Times columnist complains that Apple “stiffed its own country.”

“We turned off the moral lens,” Brooks complains, contending that “remoralizing…the market is the great project of the moment.”

Brooks doesn’t so much argue that Apple’s behavior is immoral as he does assert it, hurling tendentious language—”clearly sleazy,” “ashamed,” “stiffed”—without spelling out the reasoning behind this “moral” system that requires a corporate management to pay higher taxes than legally required.

It’s a peculiar kind of nationalism. Brooks didn’t object to Apple making its products in Asian factories, or to the company’s employing a Briton, Sir Jonathan Ive, Commander of the British Empire, as its chief design officer, or to the company making 63 percent of its sales outside of the U.S. Yet when it comes to paying taxes, Brooks wants Apple to be strictly “America First.”

This is an old argument. Back in 1947, Judge Learned Hand of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit observed, “Over and over again courts have said that there is nothing sinister in so arranging one’s affairs as to keep taxes as low as possible. Everybody does so, rich or poor; and all do right, for nobody owes any public duty to pay more than the law demands: taxes are enforced exactions, not voluntary contributions. To demand more in the name of morals is mere cant.”

It’s not immediately obvious, at least to me, that it would have been more moral for Apple voluntarily to have paid $ 9 billion more in U.S. taxes in 2012. In that case, the $ 9 billion would have been available for politicians in Washington to spend. Some portion of it would probably have been wasted. Instead, Apple was able to use the money for other purposes—compensating employees, investing in the growth and development of its business, and creating value for shareholders and customers. Apple generates plenty of U.S. taxes anyhow, through the income taxes paid by employees, capital gains taxes paid by selling shareholders, and state and local sales taxes. When the Senate held a hearing about this issue in 2013, Apple CEO Tim Cook “noted that the company’s $ 6 billion federal tax payment last year likely made it America’s largest corporate tax payer,” USA Today reported.

Apple chose to minimize its U.S. corporate income taxes at a time when those taxes, at a 35 percent rate, were so high and uncompetitive that even President Obama proposed reducing them. By avoiding paying at the 35 percent rate, Apple helped to build political pressure for rate reductions. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act signed into law by President Trump reduced the U.S. corporate tax rate to 21 percent. Apple subsequently announced it would pay $ 37.3 billion in U.S. taxes on money that it will bring back to America under the newly lowered rates.

If Brooks wants to defend the 35 percent U.S. corporate tax rate that applied in 2012—a rate that, again, even Barack Obama said was too high—I’m open, but skeptical. It’s long been a technical challenge and a political challenge for policymakers to agree on tax rates that maximize economic growth and generate the revenue necessary to pay for essential government functions. It’s not at all clear that “shame” has been the missing ingredient needed for consensus.

For Apple to have paid a higher tax rate in 2012, the company might have had to charge its customers more for phones. It might have had to pay its contractors and their Chinese factory workers even less to make those phones. Or it might have generated lower returns for its shareholders, including a lot of U.S. pension funds. Doing those things so that politicians in Washington could have extra tax money to spend may be moral in Brooks’ view of the world. But the tax choices Apple made instead are also morally defensible. That is something for Apple employees—and shareholders and customers, too—to keep in mind the next time David Brooks calls them “sleazy” or instructs them to be ashamed.

Ira Stoll is editor of and author of JFK, Conservative.


]]> 0 Outgoing IDF Chief Says Yes, We Armed Anti-Government Extremists in Syria Tue, 15 Jan 2019 14:29:15 +0000

Eisenkot Comes Clean

That Israel was assisting rebel groups with extremist ideologies in Syria has been widely believed by a number of observers, who were often derided as “conspiracy theorists” for floating the notion. Eisenkot’s statements confirm those suspicions.

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MintPress News

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Ivory Coast ex-President Gbagbo acquitted at ICC court in The Hague Tue, 15 Jan 2019 14:04:05 +0000 Continue reading Ivory Coast ex-President Gbagbo acquitted at ICC court in The Hague]]>

The International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague has acquitted Ivory Coast ex-President Laurent Gbagbo.

He had been charged with crimes against humanity in connection with violence following a disputed 2010 election that left 3,000 dead and 500,000 displaced.

Mr Gbagbo was captured in 2011 in a presidential palace bunker by UN and French-backed forces supporting his rival, Alassane Ouattara.

He was the first former head of state to go on trial at the ICC.

What was Mr Gbagbo accused of?

The violence in Ivory Coast, the world’s biggest cocoa producer, came after Mr Gbagbo refused to accept that he had lost a disputed election run-off to Mr Ouattara in 2010.

The five months of violence that followed were described as some of the most brutal clashes the country had ever seen.

During the political stand-off there were bloody clashes and targeted killings in Abidjan in the south, and several hundred were massacred in the western town of Duekoue.

Prosecutors said Mr Gbagbo clung to power “by all means” and charged him with four counts of crimes against humanity, murder, rape and other forms of sexual violence, persecution and “other inhuman acts”.

He denied the charges, which he said were politically motivated.

ICC judges ruled on Tuesday that he had no case to answer and ordered his immediate release.

Prosecutors had failed to demonstrate “the existence of a ‘common plan’ to keep Mr Gbagbo in power” which included crimes against civilians, or a “policy to attack a civilian population”, the ICC said.

Presiding Judge Cuno Tarfusser said the prosecution had also “failed to demonstrate that public speeches by Gbagbo constituted ordering or inducing the alleged crimes”.

Prosecutors can appeal after the court files its decision in writing.

Mr Gbagbo’s supporters whooped, cheered and threw their firsts in the air in the public gallery following the announcement, the BBC’s Anna Holligan reports from the court.

One of his supporters, Gragbayou Yves, who had travelled to the court from Paris, told AFP news agency: “I am very, very happy. Finally there is some justice.”

However, victims of the violence are opposed to his release.

“If Laurent Gbagbo is released, we victims will not see justice,” Karim Coulibaly, who was shot in the violence and had to have his arm amputated, told AFP earlier.

“I was a driver but now I am unemployed. I’m not against reconciliation but first you have to look after the victims.”

Is this a blow to the ICC?

“Whenever a case involving mass atrocities essentially collapses at the ICC, it does damage to the perception of the court as a credible and effective institution of international justice,” Mark Kersten, author of Justice in Conflict, told the BBC‘s Anna Holligan.

“Many are concerned that the court is emerging as an institution where only rebels can be successfully prosecuted,” he added.

The prosecution at the ICC has also failed in its attempts to build successful cases against former DR Congo Vice-President Jean-Pierre Bemba, and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.

On the other hand, the ruling demonstrates the judges’ independence and impartiality and makes it harder to push the narrative, popular among those who fear the long arm of the ICC, that the court is a biased weapon of neo-colonial justice used purely to convict African leaders, our correspondent says.

Janet Anderson, a writer for the Justice Tribune, told the BBC: “It’s important also to find people not guilty or to find there isn’t a case to answer if there isn’t one.”

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BBC News – World

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Trump Confesses: “I Took Orders from Moscow”|Humor Tue, 15 Jan 2019 03:28:03 +0000 Continue reading Trump Confesses: “I Took Orders from Moscow”|Humor]]>

The White House. Exclusive to The Spoof. After vigorously denying, in numerous tweets, the New York Times claim that the FBI investigated President Donald Trump as a possible Russian agent who acted on behalf of Russian oligarchs, the president today conceded that the charge was true. "Yes," he admitted in a tweet, " I took orders from Moscow."

The astonishing confession that followed left little doubt regarding the validity of The Times story.

Trump explained that prior to the infamous meeting with Vladimir Putin at Helsinki, he had received two specific orders on successive days from Putin, who was still in Moscow, and that he had complied with the former KGB spy's orders. "Since Putin could not easily do this for himself, I was ordered to have an aide bring two Big Macs and a chocolate shake from the Helsinki McDonalds to our private meeting. I obeyed."

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Volkswagen to invest $800 million, build new electric vehicle in U.S. Mon, 14 Jan 2019 22:10:06 +0000 Continue reading Volkswagen to invest $800 million, build new electric vehicle in U.S.]]>

Dr. Herbert Diess, CEO, Volkswagen AG, speaks in front of an image of a van concept vehicle during the company’s presentation at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan, U.S., January 14, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

DETROIT (Reuters) – Volkswagen AG (VOWG_p.DE) said on Monday it is investing $ 800 million to build a new electric vehicle at its plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, as it shifts toward zero emission vehicles.

The German automaker, in an announcement at the Detroit Auto Show, said it is adding 1,000 new jobs and that electric vehicle production in Tennessee will begin in 2022.

German automakers have been under pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump to increase their investments in the United States.

VW will use a modular electric toolkit chassis (MEB) in Chattanooga. VW designed MEB to be the basic building block for its EVs and is intended to consolidate all of the vehicle’s electronic controls and reduce the number of microprocessors.

Volkswagen is building the first dedicated EV production facility in Zwickau, Germany, starting MEB production by the end of 2019.

Volkswagen will add EV production at facilities in Anting and Foshan, in China, in 2020, and in the German cities of Emden and Hanover by 2022.

“We obviously think electric vehicles are going to play a more and more prominent role,” said Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam, who took part in the announcement.

Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Jeffrey Benkoe

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Reuters: Business News

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MP Gareth Johnson resigns as Tory Whip ahead of Brexit deal vote Mon, 14 Jan 2019 14:33:06 +0000 Continue reading MP Gareth Johnson resigns as Tory Whip ahead of Brexit deal vote]]>

MP Gareth Johnson has resigned his post as a minister in the Government’s Whips’ Office, ahead of a highly anticipated vote on Theresa May’s Brexit deal. Johnson said in his resignation letter that he could not support the deal.

Addressing his letter to May, Johnson wrote that the current deal being pushed by the government “gives out country no clear, unilateral path out of the European Union and ensures we will be fettered in our ability to negotiate trade deals.”

“This agreement prevents us from taking back control and instead could leave us perpetually constrained by the European Union,” he added.

He said that the issue has forced him to “place my loyalty to my country above my loyalty to the government.”

The deal is expected to be canned in a vote scheduled for Tuesday, and May’s cabinet will likely face a co-confidence vote after the deal fails to pass.

On Monday, May went on one-day speaking tour in a last-ditch effort to convince legislators to support the deal. In a speech delivered in the leave-supporting city of Stoke-on-Trent, May accused the parliament of undermining the wishes of the British people.

“As we have seen over the last few weeks, there are some in Westminster who would wish to delay or even stop Brexit and who will use every device available to them to do so,” May said. “I ask MPs to consider the consequences of their actions on the faith of the British people in our democracy.”

May’s government suffered a string of resignations in November after the prime minister announced that her cabinet had settled on a Brexit deal.

Notably, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab – the man charged with negotiating and finalizing the deal – was among the handful of ministers who resigned. In his resignation letter, Raab said that the Brexit deal in its current form was deeply flawed.

With the support of 200 lawmakers within her Conservative Party, May managed to survive a no-confidence vote on December 12. She may not have the same luck on Tuesday, however. Some 100 MPs of May’s own party as well as 10 legislators from the Democratic Unionist Party, a Northern Irish partner in her minority coalition, are likely to vote against her deal. Following the vote, Labour Party’s leader Jeremy Corbyn is expected to file a motion of no confidence, potentially leading to a new general election.

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