Protests greet shoppers at Wal-Marts nationwide.

Rivers of Hope

  • Demonstrators are arrested by police after protesting outside a Walmart store Friday Nov. 23, 2012, in Paramount, Calif. Wal-Mart employees and union supporters are taking part in today's nationwide demonstration for better pay and benefits A union-backed group called OUR Walmart, which includes former and current workers, was staging the demonstrations and walkouts at hundreds of stores on Black Friday, the day when retailers traditionally turn a profit for the year. (AP Photo/Nick Ut)

    Enlarge PhotoAssociated Press/Nick Ut – Demonstrators are arrested by police after protesting outside a Walmart store Friday Nov. 23, 2012, in Paramount, Calif. Wal-Mart employees and union supporters are taking part in …more 

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Wal-Mart workers and supporters marched in protest at stores nationwide Thursday and Friday, blasting the wages, benefits and treatment of employees at the world’s largest retailer.

The efforts seemed to do little to keep shoppers away though —Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said it was its best Black Friday ever.

In Paramount, Calif., authorities arrested nine people, including three Wal-Mart employees, for blocking a busy street outside a store there. Sheriff’s Capt. Mike Parker said they were cited and released on misdemeanor charges.

At its height, authorities said, the Paramount protest drew about 1,000 people.

“A lot more…

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…start your engines

The Two-Woman Crusade

If you’re reading this you’ve survived Thanksgiving and Black Friday.  Congratulations.

Those who spent the wee hours of yesterday morning waiting outside your local Toys R Us, Best Buy, Kmart, Target, etc., you have my sympathies.  I only hope that it was worth it.

Personally the thought of standing out in the cold, and in many cases wet, before dawn sounds absolutely terrible to me.  Although I recognize that most power-shoppers are made of sterner stuff than me when it comes to the world of retail warfare.

However in a world where Amazon, Ebay, and online shopping for all of the retail outlets previously mentioned, I find it even more difficult to stomach the idea of a traditional Black Friday.

Sure online shopping may not have the thrill of sitting on a sidewalk in preparation for elbowing out other shoppers for the latest and greatest at an “unbeatable” price, but…

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Google France Faces Fine Of $1.3 Billion For Tax Noncompliance. Google Denies The Accusation.

TechCrunch

Google France could be ordered to pay $1.3 billion to France’s equivalent of the IRS (Direction générale des finances) due to tax noncompliance in 2011. The agency has been investigating Google’s revenue in France for months. With only 138 million euros of revenue in France in 2011, the company has used tax-optimization strategies, but has always stated that they comply with the law. It denies the accusation.

The French weekly Le Canard enchaîné (which has an excellent track record for investigations) first obtained a letter that the Direction générale des finances sent to Google France asking it to pay $1.3 billion (€1 billion) in tax penalties. Most of Google France’s revenue could go directly to Google’s European headquarters in Ireland where the corporate tax is only 12.5 percent. French news website Owni obtained Google Ireland’s 125-page financial statements for 2011, certified by Ernst & Young, in order to corroborate Le Canard enchaîné’s…

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