Civil Rights leaders are calling this the new 'Jim Crow', and it is. These cases like Trayvon Martin or here in Baltimore, a Jewish neighborhood watch person being tried for injuring a minority youth walking in a neighborhood are all about intimidation and setting boundaries........THERE IS NO FREEDOM IN SETTING ENTIRE AREAS OF A CITY OR TOWN OFF LIMITS AND INDICATES A SOCIETIES DECLINE INTO THIRD WORLD STATUS. As the middle-class know, they are moving in that direction. At a progressive conference I spoke with follow middle-class professionals all concerned about their future in this regard. THESE POLICIES ARE BEING IMPLEMENTED WITH A THIRD WAY PRESIDENT AND THIRD WAY LEADERSHIP IN CONGRESS. PROGRESSIVES MUST PAY ATTENTION TO THEIR POLITICAL CANDIDATES THIS NEXT ELECTION----YOU DON'T WANT POLITICIANS WHO SUPPORT A FEW PROGRESSIVE ISSUES....YOU WANT A REAL PROGRESSIVE!
Florida Man Charged With Felony for Allegedly Stealing $1 Cup of Soda From McDonald's By Suzan Clarke
By Suzan Clarke | ABC News Blogs – 11 hrs ago
(Collier County Sheriff Dept.)
A Florida man was arrested and held on $6,500 bond after police in Collier County said he left a McDonald's without paying for a cup of soda valued at $1.
Mark Abaire, 52, had apparently asked staff at the Naples restaurant for a courtesy cup of water, but instead he allegedly filled the cup with soda from the soda fountain and sat outside of the restaurant, according to a story in the Naples Daily News which cited the police report of the Thursday incident.
Abaire allegedly refused to pay for the soda when he was asked to do so, refused to leave the restaurant and cursed at the manager, the Naples Daily News also reported.
Abaire, whose aliases include "Red" and "Clown," has a long list of prior arrests, according to records from the Collier County Sheriff's Department.
He was charged with petty theft, trespassing and disorderly intoxication after the Thursday arrest, and sent to Collier County jail. Petty theft is usually a misdemeanor, but because Abaire has previous convictions for theft, the charge was upgraded to a felony. The trespassing and disorderly intoxication charges are misdemeanors.
Abaire could face five years in prison if he is convicted of the felony
BRIBERY IS A FELONY AND THE CRIME BELOW INVOLVED HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS....MUCH DIFFERENT THAN THE SODA ABOVE. bUT THE CALL IS TO FINE AND FIRE...NO PROSECUTION HERE! THIS IS NOT RULE OF LAW.
BUSTED: Wal-Mart Caught In Massive Bribery Scandal That Goes All The Way To The Top By Henry Blodget The Daily Ticker Blog
Wal-Mart's (WMT) stock is getting hammered following allegations that the company engaged in systematic bribery in Mexico for several years and then covered it up.
If true, the allegations are a huge black eye for the global retailing leader, which prides itself on its reputation for integrity and transparency.
So far, Wal-Mart hasn't denied the allegations. Rather, it says it is once again investigating them—the way it did several years ago, before it shoved them under the rug.
According to David Barstow of The New York Times, who reported the story, the bribes were directed by the man who went on to become vice-chairman and the head of Wal-Mart's U.S. division, Eduardo Castro-Wright. At the time, Castro-Wright was head of the company's Mexico unit, and he was praised and promoted for the astonishing growth he delivered there—growth that the NYT says was directly the result of the bribes.
Wal-Mart's investigation of the bribery story, meanwhile, was in part overseen by the head of Wal-Mart International at the time, Michael Duke. Duke has since been promoted to CEO of Wal-Mart.
The first reaction of many upon hearing the Mexico bribery story is "So what—it's Mexico—that's the way things are done in Mexico."
That may often be true, but as a defense of Wal-Mart's actions, it overlooks several key points.
First, Wal-Mart clearly didn't think it could defend its actions by saying "this is the way things are done in Mexico." If it had thought it could justify its actions this way, it already would have.
Second, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act makes it illegal to bribe officials in countries in which American companies do business, which is what Wal-Mart is accused of doing here.
Third, the bribes involved internal accounting fraud, which Wal-Mart couldn't condone under any circumstances.
Fourth, it's preposterous to think that a company as large and influential as Wal-Mart could take a position that it's fine to ignore local laws to meet its own growth targets.
So the allegations are a huge deal, regardless how business is generally conducted in Mexico. And, given the current positions of Eduardo Castro-Wright and Michael Duke, they extend right to the top of the company.
If the allegations are true, Wal-Mart needs to apologize, pay whatever fines are required, and then fire both men—Castro-Wright because he oversaw the bribes, and Duke because he knew about them and didn't do anything. This scandal is far too big for the company to just sweep under the rug
THE POOR WILL REMAIN TRAPPED BY FINANCIAL FEES THAT ENRICH BANKS AND THEIR SHAREHOLDERS...WILL THAT BE YOU OR YOUR CHILDREN? NOTE THAT THIS IS THE CONSUMER PROTECTION AGENCY ELIZABETH WARREN CREATED. SHE IS THIRD WAY FREE MARKET AND MEGA-CORPORATIONS. SHE TOLD CORPORATIONS FIGHTING THIS AGENCY THAT IT IS ALL ABOUT KEEPING THE BUSINESS COMPETITION FAIR.
Agency Backs Off Plan To Limit Credit Card Fees by The Associated Press
April 12, 2012
The Obama administration's consumer financial watchdog agency is backing off a plan to limit big upfront fees on credit cards, a move that could hit borrowers with poor credit histories especially hard.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau acknowledged Thursday that its proposal would increase costs for some cardholders and allow banks to charge more in fees.
The CFPB was set up after the financial crisis to protect consumers from loans and cards with hidden fees or other traps. Thursday's decision shows the difficult line the young agency must walk, allowing banks to make enough money so that they can continue to offer loans and cards while protecting consumers from fees that it considers abusive or deceptive.
Bill Bartmann, a financial lawyer and debt-collection executive who generally supports the agency, called it "strategic thinking" on the part of Richard Cordray, the agency's director.
"He's picking battles, and it's unrealistic to think you can win them all," said Bartmann, who publishes a widely read newsletter on financial regulation.
Fee limits are of particular concern to borrowers with weak credit, including so-called subprime borrowers, and the companies that seek to lend to them.
Subprime borrowers tend to face much higher fees because lending to them carries more risk. Banks fear the agency will block too many fees, effectively preventing millions of Americans from establishing stronger credit so that they can qualify for mortgages or auto loans.
Consumer groups decried the CFPB's decision. But several independent experts called it a positive signal that the agency is choosing battles carefully as it adds staff and writes dozens of rules required under a 2010 overhaul of financial rules.
Banks aren't allowed to charge fees totaling more than 25 percent of a person's credit limit in the first year that the account exists. But there's no limit to the fees they can charge before the card is activated.
Under a rule proposed last year, those upfront fees would have counted toward the 25 percent cap. The CFPB is retreating from that idea after a federal court in South Dakota prevented it from taking effect.
The consumer agency's new rule would let banks charge whatever fees they want up front. Those fees can include processing or activation fees of nearly $100 a large chunk of the credit limit for borrowers who are often granted lines of less than $1,000. Under the new plan, the 25 percent cap would only apply to fees charged after the card is issued.
First Premier Bank of Sioux Falls, S.D., had argued that the Fed overstepped when it proposed the tougher rule. The bank had started charging customers a $95 processing fee for credit cards before the account was opened, plus a $75 annual fee. Some cards had a credit limit of $300.
The upfront fee allowed First Premier and others to charge people fees totaling far more than 25 percent of their credit lines. The rule was an attempt to close that loophole.
High-fee, low-limit cards like First Premier's are available mainly to people with weak credit histories, said Chi Chi Wu, an attorney with the National Consumer Law Center, which has urged CFPB to fight the court ruling.
"This is the population of credit card holders who are the most vulnerable, folks who don't have a great credit history, who probably already have limited means," Wu said. "If anything, the CFPB should stand stronger for the consumers who have the least power among us."
Republicans and business lobbyists had opposed the CFPB's creation and tried to prevent it from gaining power. They argued that it would reduce consumer choice, in part because fee limits would discourage banks from offering some services.
By tipping the rule in favor of banks, the agency is showing that it takes both businesses and consumers into account when setting policy, said Mark Williams, a former examiner for the Federal Reserve who teaches finance at Boston University.
"Just a year ago, the view was that this agency was going to be devastating for business," inventing costly and unnecessary consumer protections, Williams said. He said Thursday's action shows that the agency "could be very effective for consumers and also bridge the needs of business to make profits."
The CFPB's revised proposal was published quietly in the Federal Register, the daily digest in which federal agencies make routine announcements. The CFPB is accepting public comment on the matter until June.
The CFPB declined comment beyond a press release that summarized the proposal. It acknowledged the potential effects in its Federal Register notice.
SEE MY WEBSITE CATEGORY - 'PETITIONS, COMPLAINTS' TO FIND HOW TO ADDRESS THIS STUDENT LOAN/COLLECTION AGENCY