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Libertarianism in the U.S. – The Pros & Cons, What is the Movement About? – Video

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Mar 212015

Libertarianism in the U.S. – The Pros Cons, What is the Movement About?
PhilaU professors Michael Galganski and Evan Laine discuss at this Arlen Specter Center for Public Service Roundtable the meaning of Libertarianism and debate with students the pros and…

By: Arlen Specter Center for Public Service at Philadelphia University- Roxboro House Roundtables

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Libertarianism in the U.S. – The Pros & Cons, What is the Movement About? – Video

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McDonald's Accused Of Evading More Than 1 Bln Euros In Taxes

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Feb 262015

By RTT News, February 25, 2015, 10:54:00 AM EDT

( – Civil society groups in Europe have accused fast-food giant McDonald’s Corp. ( MCD ) of evading more than 1 billion euros or $1.1 billion in tax over five years between 2009 and 2013. The company is said to have managed low taxes by routing its royalty payments from Europe through its subsidiary based in tax havens such as Luxembourg.

The one billion euro tax evasion figure has been derived by calculating the actual tax on the royalties McDonald’s received from European countries and major markets like France, the U.K., Italy, and Spain.

The group, consisting of labor unions and a charity group, are calling for the European Commission and respective national tax authorities to launch an investigation on the world’s largest restaurant chain’s tax practices and take appropriate measures.

The coalition of European and American trade unions, along with U.K-based anti-poverty campaign group War on Want, unveiled a report today related to McDonald’s deliberate avoidance of corporate taxes in Europe. The report is the first to shed light on the company’s tax record.

The trade unions include, European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU), U.S.-based Service Employees International Union (SEIU), and European Federation of Trade Unions in the Food, Agriculture and Tourism sectors (EFFAT). The unions represent more than 15 million workers in different sectors of the economy in 40 countries.

“It is shameful to see that a multibillion euro company, that pays low wages to its workforce, still seeks to avoid its responsibility to pay its fair share of much needed taxes to finance public services we all rely on. Rather than supersizing profits and minimising taxes, McDonald’s should change its recipes to ensure that Corporate Citizenship is at the core of its menu,” said EPSU General Secretary Jan Willem Goudriaan.

McDonald’s opened its first store in Europe in the Netherlands in 1971. Since then, McDonald’s has grown to become the largest fast food company in Europe, with 7,850 stores and 20.3 billion euros in systemwide sales in 2013.

In Europe, over 73 percent of McDonald’s stores are operated by franchisees that pay it a royalty. McDonald’s European division accounts for nearly 40 percent of the company’s operating income.

The report states that transnational corporations like McDonald’s are avoiding taxes in Europe by routing royalty revenues through subsidiaries located in tax havens.

McDonald's Accused Of Evading More Than 1 Bln Euros In Taxes

MTV Airs Illuminati Public Service Announcement / Commercial – Video

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Jan 302015

MTV Airs Illuminati Public Service Announcement / Commercial
MTV Airs Illuminati Public Service Announcement Commercial. *SUBSCRIBE* for more great videos! Click “Like” “Favorite” and sound off in the comments. Mark Dice is a media analyst, author,…

By: Mark Dice

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MTV Airs Illuminati Public Service Announcement / Commercial – Video

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Tory crackdown on tax evasion lost in a fog: Goar

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Sep 242014

There has been scarcely a peep out of Ottawa since last winters promise to crack down on companies that stash their cash in offshore tax havens.

The silence was particularly acute last week, when the OECD (Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development) came out with a seven-point action plan to prevent multinational corporations from using low-tax or no-tax jurisdictions to hide their assets. Canada was one of the countries that called loudest for a co-ordinated international approach. But when the Paris-based agency delivered its blueprint, there was no acknowledgement from Canadas finance minister, revenue minister or any other member of the federal cabinet.

Catching tax cheaters was a Conservative priority when the late Jim Flaherty delivered his 10th and final budget last February. He affirmed the governments determination to combat international tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance. That followed his 2013 to change the Income Tax Act to flush out businesses that hid their assets abroad. In 2012 he closed several tax loopholes that allowed Canadian companies to set up shell companies and create partnerships in offshore tax havens.

But the governments ardour seems to have cooled lately.

The OECDs Sept. 16 report identifying actions countries can take right now to stem the outflow of taxable income should have been welcomed in Ottawa. Canada cant tackle this issue alone. It is a global problem; one that will grow as technology becomes more sophisticated and persist until nations take collective action.

But harmonizing tax international standards has become politically awkward for Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Under his government, Canada has reduced its corporate income tax rate to the lowest level in the G7. Harper boasts about this achievement, claiming it brings in foreign investment, spurs growth and creates jobs. He will undoubtedly use that sales pitch in next falls election.

Aligning Canadas corporate taxes with those of other countries would undercut its advantage as investment magnet. Participating in an internationally transparent system of corporate taxation, as the OECD proposes, would allow voters to see who is paying for Ottawas deficit-elimination drive.

There is a second complication. The tax department is quietly reducing its efforts to hunt down multinationals that use overseas tax havens. Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) hasnt announced any wind-down but its corporate business plan for the years 2014-2017 shows a decrease in the share of its budget allocated to offshore compliance.

According to the Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada, which represents the 7,000 auditors employed by CRA, the government has begun disbanding many of the international teams it set up 18 months ago. Fifty senior tax auditors who led overseas enforcement teams have been told their jobs will be eliminated. The department is shifting its staff to accommodate Ottawas new flavour-of-the-month: cracking down on charities that engage in political activities.

Tory crackdown on tax evasion lost in a fog: Goar

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Fitch Affirms Virgin Islands WAPA Sr Lien Bonds at 'BB' / Sub Lien Bonds at 'BB-'

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May 312013


Fitch Ratings has affirmed the following ratings for the Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority (WAPA):

–$156,550,000 electric system revenue bonds, series 2003, 2010A, 2010B, 2010C, 2012A at ‘BB’;

–$109,340,000 electric system subordinated revenue bonds, series 2007A, 2012B, 2012C at ‘BB-‘.

The Rating Outlook on all bonds is Negative.


The electric system revenue bonds are secured by a pledge of net electric revenues and certain other funds established under the bond resolution. The electric system subordinated revenue bonds are secured by a pledge of net revenues that are subordinate to the pledge securing the electric system revenue bonds.


WEAKENED FINANCIAL METRICS: WAPA’s financial metrics have deteriorated in recent years to speculative-grade levels reflecting escalating fuel prices, delays in cost recovery, higher receivables and increased reliance on short-term debt financing. Fitch-calculated debt service coverage has remained below 1.0x since fiscal 2010 and the ability to meet financial targets remains uncertain.

INADEQUATE AND REGULATED COST RECOVERY MECHANISMS: The authority’s electric rates are regulated by the Virgin Islands Public Service Commission (PSC), which has authorized cost recovery through both base rates and a levelized energy adjustment clause (LEAC) for fuel and other related costs. Although the PSC been reasonably responsive to requests for cost recovery in recent years, delays inherent in both the regulatory process and the recovery mechanism impair liquidity and limit financial flexibility.

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Fitch Affirms Virgin Islands WAPA Sr Lien Bonds at 'BB' / Sub Lien Bonds at 'BB-'

ADB Helps Marshall Islands Improve Public Service Delivery

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Nov 282012

ADB Helps Marshall Islands Improve Public Service Delivery And Fiscal Sustainability

MANILA, PHILIPPINES (27 November 2012) The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $5 million loan to boost public service delivery and help the Government of the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) achieve fiscal sustainability through improving government finances.

The second subprogram under the RMI Public Sector Program supports the implementation of the governments reform initiatives and initiates adjustments required to achieve long-term fiscal sustainability. Through the $9.5 million subprogram, approved in August 2010, policy actions were designed and the implementation of immediate reform priority reforms began. Subprogram 2 will complete the implementation of the policy actions. The Ministry of Finance is the executing agency for the program, and will oversee all policy, legal, and regulatory actions to be undertaken in connection with the program.

Fiscal and structural reforms are needed to achieve fiscal sustainability and generate medium-term economic growth in Marshall Islands, said Hayden Everett, Financial Sector Specialist in ADBs Pacific Department.

The RMI economy relies heavily on government expenditure and on foreign grants which fund more than two-thirds of government expenditure. Economic growth over the medium term in the RMI is expected to stay low at around 1.5% and revenues are projected to decline. Because of this low-growth scenario, the RMI needs to adjust to the annual decline of the grants it receives from the United States under the Compact of Free Association, which will expire in 2023.

Structural reforms implemented by the program include the introduction of new legislation covering state-owned enterprises, tax, and fiscal responsibility and debt management; the adoption and implementation of reform plans for selected state-owned enterprises to improve their performance; and the completion of a public sector workforce audit and planning exercise. The tax reforms will boost domestic revenue collection, while implementing state-owned enterprise reforms and reducing public expenditures will contribute to improving the fiscal balance.

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members 48 from the region. In 2011, ADB approvals including co-financing totaled $21.7 billion.



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ADB Helps Marshall Islands Improve Public Service Delivery

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Gun groups split North Dakota political loyalties

 Second Amendment  Comments Off on Gun groups split North Dakota political loyalties
Oct 122012

FARGO The North Dakota U.S. House race has attracted dueling endorsements from the pro-gun lobby.

Pam Gulleson, the Democratic candidate, was recently endorsed by the National Rifle Association.

Meanwhile, Republican Kevin Cramer has picked up the backing of the Gun Owners of America, a more hard-line group on Second Amendment issues.

Gulleson, who from 1993 to 2009 represented District 26 in the state House, received an A rating for her voting record and stance on gun-rights and Second Amendment issues, the NRAs Political Victory Fund website states.

Public Service Commission member Cramer received an AQ rating from the NRA.

AQ means a candidate is recognized as pro-gun according to an NRA-PVF survey. But, it also indicates the group believes the candidate doesnt have a voting record on Second Amendment issues.

Cramers website touts the endorsement by the Gun Owners of America Political Victory Fund.

GOA-PVF gave Gulleson no rating and said on its website that she is careful to conceal her views on gun rights and did not answer their questionnaire.

GOA regularly differs with the NRA on endorsements and politician ratings, accusing the older group of being too soft on Second Amendment issues.

The NRA is backing Republican Senate candidate U.S. Rep. Rick Berg, giving him an A rating, while tagging his Democratic opponent Heidi Heitkamp with an AQ rating.

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Gun groups split North Dakota political loyalties

Thumb up: First Amendment Foundation honors Republican state senator

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Aug 032012

FRIEND OF OPEN GOVERNMENT: State Sen. Mike Fasano has been selected for the Pete Weitzel/Friend of the First Amendment Foundation awarded annually in Florida to an individual who has made a significant contribution to the cause of open government.

In announcing the award named in honor of the former manager of the Miami Herald and a founder of the First Amendment Foundation, the foundation wrote, “After state Sen. Mike Fasano questioned whether a privatization deal for the prison system had been given a complete vetting, Florida Senate President Mike Haridopolos stripped the New Port Richey Republican of his chairmanship of the Senate Budget Subcommittee on Criminal and Civil Justice Appropriations.

“When he made a public records request for information about the State Board of Administration’s investment decisions, Sen. Fasano received a bill for more than $10,000 and wondered what type of barriers regular citizens would face.

“After the Public Service Commission removed a link for public records requests from its website, Sen. Fasano demanded it be restored, complaining the PSC demonstrates a lack of access to public records.”

Barbara Petersen, president of the First Amendment Foundation, said in a letter to Fasano that his selection for the award was based on his “commitment to ensuring that the people’s interests were represented in the Florida Senate and that the legislative process remained open and accessible to its people.”

It’s too bad not all of Florida’s lawmakers respect open government as much as Fasano.

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Thumb up: First Amendment Foundation honors Republican state senator

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