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Wal-Mart Using Secret Foreign Tax Havens

Walmartr tax havensA groundbreaking report released Wednesday, June 17, by Americans for Tax Fairness (ATF) reveals that Walmart has built a vast, undisclosed network of 78 subsidiaries and branches in 15 overseas tax havens, which may be used to minimize foreign taxes where it has retail operations and to avoid U.S. tax on those foreign earnings.

These secretive subsidiaries have never been subject to public scrutiny before. They have remained largely invisible, in part because Walmart fails to list them in its annual 10-K filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Walmart’s preferred tax haven is Luxembourg, dubbed a “magical fairyland” for corporations looking to shelter profits from taxation.

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FBI Looks Into Cardinals Hacking Astros

Baseball team hacking probeThe St. Louis Cardinals, long-regarded as a paragon for on-field play in baseball, are the subject of a federal investigation for allegedly stealing information from a former division rival, the New York Times reported Tuesday.

Justice Department prosecutors said the FBI uncovered evidence that unidentified Cardinals employees hacked into the internal servers of the Houston Astros to take information about player personnel, including discussions about trades, statistics, and scouting reports. Those unnamed Cardinals officials have not been placed on leave, suspended or fired, the Times reported.

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California balcony collapse kills 5 Irish students

balcony collapse in CaliforniaA fourth-floor balcony of a San Francisco Bay Area apartment building collapsed early Tuesday, killing five Irish students and leaving eight other people injured, officials said.

Irish Foreign Minister Charlie Flanagan told reporters in Dublin that all five of the dead were in the U.S. on temporary visas. A 21st birthday party was underway in the building in the university town of Berkeley at the time of the accident, he said.

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Colorado court rules workers can be fired for medical pot use

colorado pot lawPot may be legal in Colorado, but you can still be fired for using it.

The state Supreme Court ruled 5-1 Monday that a medical marijuana patient who was fired after failing a drug test cannot get his job back.

The case was being watched closely by employers and pot smokers in states that have legalized medical or recreational marijuana.

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The ‘Natural Family’: The Latest Weapon in the Christian Right’s New Global War on Gays

Christian right anti gay planYes, same-sex marriage looks inevitable in the United States. But the Christian Right has a Plan B—and it’s working with Russia to put it into action.

The news looks bad for America’s conservative rear-guard. This month’s decision by the Supreme Court may soon make marriage equality the law of the land. Over three-quarters of Americans support anti-discrimination protection for gays and lesbians. One of our star athletes (and a Republican!) has transitioned her gender to overwhelming (though not universal) applause.

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U.S. archbishop resigns over sex abuse scandal

US archbishop resignsThe archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis and a deputy bishop have resigned after the archdiocese was charged with having failed to protect children from a pedophile priest.

The Vatican said Monday that Pope Francis accepted the resignations of Archbishop John Nienstedt and Auxiliary Bishop Lee Anthony Piche.

Nienstedt is the second U.S. bishop in the Catholic Church to resign as the result of a clergy sex abuse scandal, Minnesota Public Radio News reported.

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Anthony Graves prosecutor who withheld evidence disbarred

Anthony GravesA former Texas prosecutor lost his law license Friday after the State Bar of Texas determined he withheld evidence and falsified testimony to win a capital murder conviction against now-exonerated death row inmate Anthony Graves.

A three-person panel determined Charles Sebesta committed "professional misconduct" when he prosecuted Graves in 1994 for the slaying of six people, four of them children. While the conviction was overturned in 2006, Graves wasn't released until 2010, after spending 18 years in prison, 12 of those on death row.

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