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    Daily Digest 11/26 – How Walmart Watches Its Workforce, One Worker’s Insane Holiday Schedule

    by DailyDigest

    Thursday, November 26, 2015, 4:19 PM


Why do American cops kill so many compared to European cops? (Afridev)

Historic rates of fatal police shootings in Europe suggest that American police in 2014 were 18 times more lethal than Danish police and 100 times more lethal than Finnish police, plus they killed significantly more frequently than police in France, Sweden and other European countries.

As a scholar of sociology and criminal justice, I recently set out to understand why rates of police lethality in the US are so much higher than rates in Europe.

How Chicago tried to cover up a police execution (cmartenson)

Last December, Kalven and Futterman issued a statement revealing the existence of a dash-cam video and calling for its release. Kalven tracked down a witness to the shooting, who said he and other witnesses had been “shooed away” from the scene with no statements or contact information taken.

In February, Kalven obtained a copy of McDonald’s autopsy, which contradicted the official story that McDonald had died of a single gunshot to the chest. In fact, he’d been shot 16 times—as Van Dyke unloaded his service weapon, execution style—while McDonald lay on the ground.

NATO Is Harboring ISIS, And Here’s The Evidence (goldrunner1)

In short, Erdogan used Suruc as an excuse to begin a “war on terror.” Part and parcel of the new campaign was an invite from Ankara for Washington to use Turkey’s Incirlik air base. Subsequently, Erdogan reminded the world that the PKK is also considered a terrorist organization and as such, the anti-ISIS campaign would also include a crackdown on Kurdish militants operating in Turkey. Erdogan proceeded to focus squarely on the PKK, all but ignoring ISIS while simultaneously undercutting the coalition building process on the way to calling for new elections. Unsurprisingly, AKP put on a much better showing in the electoral redo, and with that, Erdogan had succeeded in using ISIS as a smokescreen to start a civil war with the PKK, in the process frightening voters into restoring his party’s grip on power.

Reputation In An Information Age (Chris M.)

We like socio-technical systems of reputation because they empower us in so many ways. People can achieve a level of fame and notoriety much more easily on the Internet. Totally new ways of making a living­ — think of Uber and Airbnb, or popular bloggers and YouTubers — ­become possible. But the downsides are considerable. The hacker tactic of social engineering involves fooling someone by hijacking the reputation of someone else. Most social media companies make their money leeching off our activities on their sites. And because we trust the reputational information from these socio-technical systems, anyone who can figure out how to game those systems can artificially boost their reputation. Amazon, eBay, Yelp, and others have been trying to deal with fake reviews for years. And you can buy Twitter followers and Facebook likes cheap.

Rick Rule: Absolutely Manic Bull Market In Gold Coming Soon (Herman J.)

Rick Rule, founder and chairman of Sprott Global Resource Investments Ltd., began his career in the securities business in 1974. He is a leading American retail broker specializing in mining, energy, water utilities, forest products and agriculture. His company has built a national reputation on taking advantage of global opportunities in the oil and gas, mining, alternative energy, agriculture, forestry and water industries.

Company with Obama ties presses to stage events at parks (richcabot)

The lobbying firm hired by C3 is also familiar to many Democratic officials. The Barnes Group gave $127,587 to Democratic candidates in the 2014 election cycle, more than 10 times the $11,700 it gave to Republicans, according to contributions analyzed by the Center for Responsive Politics, a money in politics watchdog group.

Ben Barnes, the firm’s founder, has even deeper ties to the Democratic Party.

How Walmart Keeps an Eye on Its Massive Workforce (richcabot)

OUR Walmart, a group of employees backed and funded by a union, was asking for more full-time jobs with higher wages and predictable schedules. Officially they called themselves the Organization United for Respect at Walmart. Walmart publicly dismissed OUR Walmart as the insignificant creation of the United Food and Commercial Workers International (UFCW) union. “This is just another union publicity stunt, and the numbers they are talking about are grossly exaggerated,” David Tovar, a spokesman, said on CBS Evening News that November.

Kohls Worker Details Her Insane Schedule Through Black Friday (richcabot)

Miller wasn’t given any option to pick her holiday schedule. She says she and her coworkers have been told that they’re not allowed to ask for any time off during the week of Thanksgiving or the week of Christmas. She fears that if she were to call out on Thanksgiving Day, she would be all but dropped from future schedules, losing her income. She’s not sure she would do it anyway. “I’d kind of like to call off, we’d all like to call off. But all it’s going to is make the people I work with in jewelry, their night even harder,” she said. “They’re going to have to hustle even more because I’m not there.”

Let’s talk, Turkey: Downing of Russian SU-24 bomber just doesn’t add up (richcabot)

At normal cruise speed (generously rounded down to 1000km) the alleged incursion would have lasted 19.4 seconds, barely enough time for a fast moving jet to take aim and lock on. Now let’s look at the 5 minutes of warnings that the Turks allege they gave the downed aircraft. Again, if we assume the same speed, the plane travelled 83 kilometers after the first warning and before the Turkish warplane fired.

Saudi Arabia’s Wells Are Running Dry (Tiffany B.)

For the last 30 years or so, Saudi Arabia’s experiment seemed successful. The production of wheat, barley and alfalfa soared from 201,000 hectares in 1973 to more than 1.1 million hectares in 1992. By the 1990s, the country turned itself from an importer of food into a net exporter, with much of its excess crop sold to neighboring countries.

Will Low Oil Prices Increase Internal Instability In Conflict Countries? (Tom K.)

One should not discount the myriad grievances present amongst the varying ethnic groups in South Sudan, but this research seems to be quite relevant given its oil exports and that much of the fighting and resulting population displacement have been localized in South Sudan’s oil producing regions in Unity, Jonglei, and Upper Nile. The conflict has significantly disrupted operations centered in these oil producing regions imposing significant strain on government revenues through forgone income from Nilepet and increasing risk to other overseas players in the sector which is dominated by China (in particular CNPC (PTR) and Sinopec (SNP), India’s ONGC (ONGC:IN), and Malaysia (Petronas), with marginal activity by France’s Total (TOT), Kuwait’s Kufpec, and Kuwaiti-Egyptian Tri-Ocean Energy.

Whale Fall (jdargis)

‘This whale is malnourished,’ he offered. ‘We don’t know why. Maybe he’s sick, maybe the mother didn’t feed it right as a calf. Maybe the whale’s consumed plastic or it’s poisoned somehow, with parasites, or too tired to eat. Looks like it’s been attacked before it beached.’ He cleaned salt spots off his sunglasses. I saw his eyes were tired. ‘Killer whales pick off the weak ones,’ he said.

A swathe of silence passed between us, gulls like asterisks overhead. ‘There’s an argument, a conservation argument, not to put a whale that’s been weeded out back in again.’

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 11/25/15

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

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