Daily Archives: December 11, 2016

Stepping into a looking glass into the land of uncertainty on January 20 2017

By Biloxi

The soon-to-be Presidency of Donald Trump reminds me of Alice of Wonderland when Alice steps through the looking glass into a land that looks vaguely familiar and where nothing actually makes sense.

Nothing makes makes sense in the soon-to-be Trump Administration where the next guy to head the EPA doesn’t believe in saving the environment,where the next guy to head HUD lied about living in public housing, where Trump’s top adviser’s stated goal is the destruction of the Republican Party and if necessary, the nation, where the top oil company CEO who has close ties to Russia, is the frontrunner for Secretary of State. As secretary of state, Tillerson would be fourth in line to the presidency., where one  of the Senate’s most obstructionist and harmful voices on issues affecting immigrants, Muslims, African-Americans, Latinos, women and the LGBTQ community is chosen as DOJ head, where the next guy to head U.S. Treasury is  former Goldman Sachs and profited from the housing crisis, where the next Commerce head, with no government experience, owns a private equity firm, where the next guy could lead the Energy agency is the former Texas governor and former Presidential candidate who famously forgot the third federal department he wanted to abolish during a 2011 presidential debate.

To summarize and bottom line: Trump Presidency, a cabinet run for and by Wall Street and big oil (with a neocon backdrop) with a handful of veteran generals thrown in and with a very controlled media outlet. Welcome to Trump’s Gotham.

President -Elect Trump Says He Doesn’t Need Daily Intelligence Briefing Because He’s ‘Smart’

In contrast to our current President: President Barack Obama has a briefing six days a week.

NY Times:

He also indicated that as president, he would not take the daily intelligence briefing that President Obama and his predecessors have received. Mr. Trump, who has received the briefing sparingly as president-elect, said that it was often repetitive and that he would take it “when I need it.” He said his vice president, Mike Pence, would receive the daily briefing.

“You know, I’m, like, a smart person,” he said. “I don’t have to be told the same thing in the same words every single day for the next eight years.”

He added that he had instructed the officials who give the briefing: “‘If something should change from this point, immediately call me. I’m available on a one-minute’s notice.’”

Major U.S. companies accidentally fund fake news

Screen capture of a page from the website World News Daily Report shows an ad for a Fiat Chrysler–manufactured pickup truck attached to a fictional story about the artist Yoko Ono and former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Marketwatch:

“Yoko Ono: ‘I Had An Affair With Hillary Clinton In The ’70s,’ ” read the headline in World News Daily Report, a website that peddles made-up stories.

Next to the story? An ad for the 2017 Ram 1500 truck, made by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV.

Big brands, often inadvertently, are helping fund the websites at the center of a growing controversy over misinformation on the internet.

Wells Fargo Scandal Hits Prudential as Whistle-Blowers Sue

  • Insurer’s investigations division workers claim abuses ignored
  • Bankers signed up unaware clients for policies, plaintiffs say

Prudential Financial Inc. was accused of covering up fraudulent sales of life insurance policies through Wells Fargo & Co. to low-income customers, marking the latest flareup of the fake-accounts scandal plaguing the third-largest U.S. lender by assets.

Many of the customers, who often had Hispanic last names, didn’t know what they had purchased and there were “a large number of similarities” between the way Wells Fargo employees opened bogus bank accounts without customers’ knowledge and the way Prudential’s “MyTerm” policies were sold by the bank, three of the insurer’s former employees said in a lawsuit filed in New Jersey state court.

Three months after the Wells Fargo scandal erupted, resulting in the October departure of Chief Executive Officer John Stumpf, the San Francisco-based lender is still struggling to move past the crisis. Even as Donald Trump’s surprise election may ease pressure from Washington, an attempt to force aggrieved customers into closed-door arbitration is drawing a legislative backlash in California. Now, amid accusations of a cover-up at Prudential, alleged fake accounts are infecting another financial giant.

The three employees of Prudential Insurance Co. of America’s corporate investigations division said executives ignored their reports of the abuses for fear of alienating Wells Fargo as a business partner. They said they were placed on administrative leave and escorted from the building in a “perp walk” and now have a “threat of imminent termination hanging over their heads,” according to a copy of the complaint in New Jersey state court that was confirmed by a lawyer for the plaintiffs. The lawsuit, reported late Friday by the New York Times, couldn’t be confirmed immediately in court records.

Read on.

Make Kids Behave Again: ‘Trump On A Stump’ Is Jimmy Kimmel’s Terrifying Alternative To ‘Elf On The Shelf’

Prudential Financial : investigating Wells Fargo partnership after scandal

U.S. insurer Prudential Financial (>> Prudential Financial Inc)is investigating whether Wells Fargo (>> Wells Fargo & Co)employees signed up customers for its life insurance policies without their knowledge, a spokesman said on Saturday.

Sales practices at Wells Fargo have been under a spotlight since September when federal regulators ordered the San Francisco-based bank to pay $190 million in fines and restitution because they said its high pressure sales environment pushed employees to open as many as 2 million deposit and credit card accounts without customers’ permission.

Prudential has a partnership with Wells Fargo to sell a low-cost life insurance policy, known as MyTerm, to the bank’s retail customers.

Read on.