Trust Digest 94 (April 27, 2015)


Obama Escalates Feud With His Fellow Democrats Over Pacific Trade Deal
President Barack Obama escalated a public feud over international trade with the liberal wing of his own party, a brawl that threatens to undermine one of the key goals for the White House this year. The schism over trade widened with several testy exchanges this week between Mr. Obama and his liberal base, including remarks Friday in which the president said critics were mischaracterizing the deal.
Key Words: Trans-Pacific Partnership, Congress
Trust Issues: Alignment of Interests, Governance


DEA chief to resign, reports say
The head of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is expected to step down amid mounting pressure over a sex scandal at her agency, according to multiple reports. DEA chief Michele Leonhart will resign, CBS and CNN are reporting, after she was grilled by lawmakers over alleged “sex parties” funded by Colombian drug cartels in which her agents participated.
Key Words: DEA, Scandal
Trust Issues: Predictability and Integrity, Conflict of Interest, Accountability


The Best B Corps Might Just Be The Best Companies For The World
For most of the business world, the bottom line still reigns. But over the past several years, an alternative movement of companies dedicated to improving their social and environmental performance at the same time they focus on profit has emerged.
Key Words: Social Responsibility
Trust Issues: Benevolent Concern, Capability


Comcast Role in Aborted Hulu Sale Raises Questions for Regulators
At the 2013 Allen & Co. conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, executives from Walt Disney Co., 21st Century Fox and Comcast Corp. met to discuss the future of Hulu, the online video service the media companies co-own that was up for sale.
Key Words: Hulu, Comcast, DoJ
Trust Issues: Predictability and Integrity, Relative Power


Commission charges Gazprom
EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager today formally charged Gazprom, one of Russia’s largest companies and a dominant supplier to much of central and eastern Europe, with breaking EU antitrust rules. The accusation is that Gazprom used its market power to bully and overcharge European governments and companies — specifically preventing the free flow of gas across EU states and extracting commitments in return for gas to keep control of pipelines.
Key Words: Gazprom, Antitrust
Trust Issues: Relative Power, Integrity


Brazil’s Petrobras Reports Nearly $17 Billion in Asset and Corruption Charges
Brazil’s state oil company Petróleo Brasileiro SA put a price tag on a corruption scandal that has thrown the country into political and economic turmoil, writing off $17 billion due to losses from graft and overvalued assets. The disclosures were part of the first audited financial statements released by Petrobras in more than eight months.
Key Words: Corruption, Brazil, Economic Consequences
Trust Issues: Relative Power, Integrity


Cash Flowed to Clinton Foundation Amid Russian Uranium Deal
The headline on the website Pravda trumpeted President Vladimir V. Putin’s latest coup, its nationalistic fervor recalling an era when its precursor served as the official mouthpiece of the Kremlin: “Russian Nuclear Energy Conquers the World.” The article, in January 2013, detailed how the Russian atomic energy agency, Rosatom, had taken over a Canadian company with uranium-mining stakes stretching from Central Asia to the American West. The deal made Rosatom one of the world’s largest uranium producers and brought Mr. Putin closer to his goal of controlling much of the global uranium supply chain.
Key Words: Clinton Foundation, Russian Uranium Deal
Trust Issues: Conflict of Interest, Predictability and Integrity, Relative Power


U.S. Pressed Saudis To End Yemen Airstrikes
Senior U.S. officials pressed Saudi leaders in a series of messages to quickly wrap up their air campaign in Yemen for fear of making matters worse, people familiar with the matter said, before Riyadh declared Tuesday it was ending the offensive.
Key Words: U.S. – Saudi Partnership
Trust Issues: Alignment of Interests, Level of Communication


Pentagon can’t account for $1 billion in Afghan reconstruction aid
The Defense Department can’t account for $1.3 billion that was shipped to force commanders in Afghanistan from 2004 to 2014 for critical reconstruction projects, 60 percent of all such spending under an emergency program, an internal report released Thursday concludes.
Key Words: DoD, Construction Funds
Trust Issues: Accountability, Capability, Level of Communication


Europe Looks to Tame Web’s Economic Risks
The European Union could create a powerful new regulator to oversee a swath of mainly U.S.-based Internet companies, according to an internal document that lays bare the deep concerns in top EU policy circles around the economic threat posed by companies like Google Inc. and Facebook Inc. Such a move would throw the biggest obstacle yet in the way of U.S. Internet companies operating in Europe, a number of which are already embroiled in investigations and lawsuits over issues including unfair competition and tax avoidance.
Key Words: Regulation, Unfair Competition, Tax Avoidance
Trust Issues: Accountability, Relative Power, Benevolent Concern


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