Running The Gamut: The Widespread Nature of the Corporate Virus


Recently: ‘Old News’: On-going and Under-reported Corporate Crimes and Misdemeanors‘; Halliburton / KBR’s WorldWide War Crimes – since the 1940’s


Corporate Ownership of Organic Labels – Treehugger 4/16/08


When Big Business Eats Organic – NYTimes 3/19/08

Animated graphic showing the purchase of organic food companies by agribusiness


US lawmakers have $196 Million invested in defense firms – AP/Int’l Herald Tribune 4/3/08

EXCERPT: “Members of the U.S.Congress have as much as $196 million collectively invested in companies doing business with the Defense Department, earning millions since the start of the Iraq war, according to a new study by a nonpartisan research group. The review of lawmakers’ 2006 financial disclosure statements, by the Washington-based Center for Responsive Politics, suggests that members’ holdings could pose a conflict of interest as they decide the fate of Iraq war spending. Several members who earned the most from defense contractors have plum committee or leadership assignments, including Democratic Sen. John Kerry, independent Sen. Joseph Lieberman and House Republican Whip Roy Blunt. The study found that more Republicans than Democrats hold stock in defense companies, but that the Democrats who are invested had significantly more money at stake. In 2006, for example, Democrats held at least $3.7 million in military-related investments, compared to Republican investments of $577,500.”


The Consequences of Globalization and Neoliberal Policies: What are the Alternatives? – Global Research 2/1/08

A great summary of the vast evils of neoliberal policies – and what ‘neoliberal’ even means, and examples of alternatives


Corporations given human rights while humans denied them – New American Media 2/8/08


New hazard map shows most at-risk US communities – National Geographic 2/12/08

“Scientists created the index to identify by county which populations may be less able to respond to and cope with natural disasters such as flooding, earthquakes, or hurricanes.”


Corporate Profiteering Against Iraq Vets – Salon 11/20/07


US unable to manage contractors in war – Washington Post 1/24/08


US helmet maker quickly settles suit over helmets’ quality – Int’l Herald Tribune 2/6/08

EXCERPT: “A North Dakota manufacturer has agreed to pay $2 million to settle a suit alleging that it had repeatedly shortchanged the armor in up to 2.2 million helmets for the military, including helmets for the first troops sent to Iraq and Afghanistan. Twelve days before the settlement with the Justice Department was announced, the company, Sioux Manufacturing of Fort Totten, was given a new contract of up to $74 million to make more armor for helmets to replace the old ones, which were made from the late 1980s to last year.”


Report: Guard, Reserves using hardware their grandfathers used – Raw Story 2/7/08

EXCERPT: “The final report of the independent Commission on the National Guard and Reserves, released last week, warned that the United States is unprepared for natural disasters or terrorist attacks because the Guard and Reserves lack adequate training and equipment. According to 13 News in Hampton Roads, VA, “The Commission on the Guard and Reserve says soldiers use hardware their grandfathers used, and that so much gear is in Iraq, nine out of ten units do not have what they need to do their jobs, so they cannot defend against a major attack here at home.”


War Profiteers: Business is booming! The economy’s great! – Washington Post 2/10/08


When Mercenary Armies Go Crazy – BitOfNews 11/4/07


Inside the World of War Profiteers – Chicago Tribune 2/21/08

EXCERPT: “Hundreds of pages of recently unsealed court records detail how kickbacks shaped the war’s largest troop support contract months before the first wave of U.S. soldiers plunged their boots into Iraqi sand. The graft continued well beyond the 2004 congressional hearings that first called attention to it. And the massive fraud endangered the health of American soldiers even as it lined contractors’ pockets, records show.”


30 former officials become corporate monitors – NYTimes 5/23/08

EXCERPT: “The Justice Department has appointed at least 30 former prosecutors and other government officials as well-paid corporate monitors in arrangements that allow companies to avoid criminal prosecution, according to government data released Thursday by Congress. In the last few years, the Justice Department has turned more and more often to “deferred prosecutions” to get companies suspected of wrongdoing to pay fines and change their practices without being charged criminally. Often, a corporate monitor is brought in to check on the company’s progress and ensure compliance. The practice drew attention this year after it was disclosed that John Ashcroft, the former attorney general, had been selected by Christopher J. Christie, the United States attorney for New Jersey, as a corporate monitor for a medical supply company. The job, assigned without competitive bidding, would pay Mr. Ashcroft’s consulting firm up to $52 million. Mr. Ashcroft said at a contentious Congressional hearing in March that there was nothing improper about the arrangement.”


Toward a more Corporate Union of the Americas? – Alternet 2/11/08

“Here comes the Security and Prosperity Partnership, but — what security? whose prosperity?”


In Justice Shift, Corporate Deals Replace Trials – NYTimes 4/9/08


When Bananas Ruled the World – Salon 4/19/08

“Intrigue. Power. Corruption. Death. Sex. The history of oil has nothing on that of the yellow fruit.”


Oil giants settle water suit – NYTimes 5/8/08

EXCERPTS: “Some of the nation’s largest oil companies have agreed to pay about $423 million in cash to settle a lawsuit brought by more than a hundred public water providers, claiming water contamination from a popular gasoline additive…The defendants that agreed to the settlement include BP, Royal Dutch Shell, Conoco Phillips, Chevron, Marathon Oil, Valero Energy, Citgo and Sunoco.  Six other companies named in the lawsuit, including ExxonMobil, did not agree to the deal… In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs, which include 153 public water systems in New York, California and 15 other states, claimed that the additive, a chemical called methyl tertiary butyl ether, or M.T.B.E., was a defective product that led to widespread contamination of groundwater. The suit contended that the chemical was used by oil companies, even though they knew of the environmental and health risks that it posed.”


An island’s tax haven for US defense contractor – AP/Yahoo 5/7/08


Multinationals make billions in profit out of growing food crisis – Independent, UK 5/4/08


Why We Need to Rise Up Against Industrial Agriculture – Alternet 5/3/08


Turkey plans to sell rivers and lakes to corporations – Alternet 4/23/08

EXCERPT: “Abdullah Aysu, President of the Peasants’ Federation, spoke passionately against government policies for privatising agricultural irrigation. The plans to replace management by rural cooperatives with a system of concession rights sold to private firms would have disastrous consequences for subsistence farmers and their communities, who would lose their rights to local water resources. Groundwater in rural areas is seriously depleted due to uncontrolled drilling, but commercialization is not the answer. The only real solution to these problems, Aysu explained, is to shift to a more natural model of agriculture, which he described as “ecological democracy.”  Water privatisation is not an entirely new phenomenon in Turkey. There are private water supply contracts in Arpacay and Corlu, as well as widespread outsourcing and subcontracting of the water supply across the country. In the city of Antalya, French water giant Suez pulled-out six years into a 10-year contract after the municipality rejected their demand for another price increase. The prices had already risen 130 percent and the company had failed to invest what was promised.
The new, more far-reaching wave of privatisation now orchestrated by the Turkish government, has already run into problems in a number of places. At the Istanbul conference, Dr. Ertugrul Tanrikulu of the “Edirne Water is Life Platform” talked about a serious corruption case that happened in the context of the planned privatisation in the city of Edirne. Earlier the same month, nineteen people were arrested, including the city’s mayor Hamdi Sedefci and representatives from companies involved in the tender. A consortium of three Turkish companies had won the tender for 30-year contract to run the city’s water, which also included installing water meters with an advance payment system. The consortium had placed an employee in the municipal department and distorted the tender conditions in their own favour. A police investigation revealed that the consortium was also planning to use corruption to influence water privatisation in nine other Turkish cities.”


Farmers Seek Defense Against Agribusiness – Global Research 4/3/08


Gene Giants: Climate saviors or profiteers? – RealNews via MParent 5/29/08


New law targets corporate killing – BBC 4/6/08


My Aspartame Experiment.com

A woman experimented with 108 rats for 2 years and 8 months. Her animals “ingested the equivalent amount of aspartame – in human terms of less than one diet coke a day, until their spontaneous death. Importantly, the control groups, those fed no aspartame were free from visible effects. The artificial sweetener, Aspartame, was approved by the FDA, in 1981. By the 1990’s, the FDA had a list of 92 symptoms reported to them by 10,000 consumers, a list revealed to the public under the Freedom of Information Act.”


When Multinationals Say Adieu: Global Corporations are ‘decoupling’ from US economy – CounterPunch 3/3/08


New Zealand to spend $164 Million to immunize 12-13 yr old girls, presumably against cervical cancer / human papillomavirus – Stuff 5/2/08


Hospitals struck by new killer bug – Metro, UK 5/6/08


The surprising climate benefits of organic farming – Grist 5/9/08



OSHA discovers hundreds of refinery violations – Houston Chronicle 3/9/08


The Human Cost of Chocolate – CNN 2/15/08


As nuclear waste languishes, expense to US rises – NYTimes 2/17/08

EXCERPT: “Forgotten but not gone, the waste from more than 100 nuclear reactors that the federal government was supposed to start accepting for burial 10 years ago is still at the reactor sites, at least 20 years behind schedule. But it is making itself felt in the federal budget. With court orders and settlements, the federal government has already paid the utilities $342 million, but is virtually certain to pay a total of at least $7 billion in the next few years and probably over $11 billion, government officials said. The industry said the total could reach $35 billion. The payments come from an obscure and poorly understood government account that requires no new Congressional appropriations, and will balloon in size, experts said.”


Taking Down Big Pharma – CounterPunch 3/17/08


Beyond Advertising: The Pharmaceutical Industry’s Hidden Marketing Tactics – PR Watch 2/21/08


Total lack of quality control, rampant contamination in pharmaceutical industry – Yahoo 2/5/08


Airline Safety: A Whistleblower’s Tale – BusinessWeek 1/30/08

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