The Panama Papers: Confidential Information Leaked

The Panama Papers are a leaked set of 11.5 million confidential documents that provide detailed information about more than 214,000 offshore companies listed by the Panamanian corporate service provider Mossack Fonseca, including the identities of shareholders and directors of the companies.

The documents have shown how wealthy individuals, including public officials, hide their money from public scrutiny for tax-avoidance. At the time of publication, the papers identified five then-heads of state or government leaders from Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Iceland, Ukraine, and the United Arab Emirates. Government officials , close relatives, and close associates of various heads of government of more than forty other countries, including the United Kingdom, Brazil, China, France, Russia, Spain, India, and South Africa.

While the use of offshore business entities is not illegal in the jurisdictions in which they are registered, during their investigation reporters found that some of the shell companies may have been used for illegal purposes, including fraud, drug trafficking, and tax evasion.

The New York Times describes the Panama Papers in their article on April 4, 2016 that can be found here.

A video by the ICIJ (The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists) titled, “The Panama Papers: Victims of Offshore”, can be found here. The video does a great job describing the worldwide impact that the Panama Papers have had in recent time.

Kanye West: U.S. President 2020?

Kanye West for President of the United States?

Kanye West’s career trajectory has always been full of the audacious, the memorable, and the newsworthy. His announcement of a presidential bid in 2020 at last year’s MTV Video Music Awards on August 30 was all three, and whether the plan ever comes to be executed, the idea of a Kanye West presidency is the source of excited conversation and conjecture that is beginning to blend the world of Hip-Hop and politics in a way that seeps into other aspects of popular culture.

New Yorker magazine, the 91-year old rag considered by many to the quintessential publication for the cultured and political, has ventured into uncharted territory, making Kanye West the boldest representation of Hip-Hop in its history. The issue last September 14th, features a political cartoon starring Yeezy as not a rapper but a politician deeply entrenched with American political history.

That’s because the cartoon is a joke within a joke, a replica of a historic photograph taken in 1948. In the photograph, President Truman was seen holding up November 3’s Chicago Daily Tribune, which erroneously reported that New York Governor Thomas E. Dewey had defeated the incumbent Truman, marking one of the newspaper’s biggest gaffes in its history (and any newspaper, for that matter).

In the 2015 version created by Barry Blitt, Kanye West is Truman, and the paper’s headline reads “Trump Defeats Kanye,” opting for the rapper’s first name. Because Kanye. The tongue-in-cheek choice for cover artwork by the New Yorker speaks not only to ‘Ye’s status as a pop culture giant, but also to Hip-Hop’s; the music aside, its influence in American politics has always been an important element, but it has certainly edged its way into the forefront as of late.

Kanye West’s image is now forever entwined with one of the most iconic images in history. And it’s not even 2020 yet.

Official location for the information above can be found here.

Barack Obama’s Wise Words on Future U.S. President

Barack Obama in a press conference announces his concerns for America’s future in a well thought out, meaningful, and wise speech.

Barack Obama goes on to explain, “I think foreign observers are troubled by some of the rhetoric that has taken place in these Republican primaries and debates.”

When asked about he thoughts on Trump, he says, “I don’t think it is [the trouble] restricted by the weight of Mr.Trump. I find it interesting that everyone is focused on Trump, as he simply says in more interesting ways what the other candidates are saying.”

He addresses his concern on Climate Change when saying, “They are all denying climate change, which is troubling to the international community since the science is unequivocal. Other countries know that if influential countries like us don’t act on such a crucial issue, then no one will.”

He expresses his hope in the American people when he says, “I have a lot of faith in the American people and I believe that they recognize that being president is a serious job. ”

Obama explains what is needed for a president when he says, “It’s not hosting a television show,or a reality show. It’s not promotion, it’s not marketing, it’s hard, and…it’s not about doing whatever will get you on the news on a given day, and sometimes it requires you to make the unpopular, tough decisions. However, as you get closer, reality has a way of intruding in and these are the people I have faith in.”

This was a noble speech from Barack Obama, which may demonstrate how the media can be so influential in decision making. The media almost forces us to conform to what’s popular regardless of whether or not what we are hearing is truly rational. Truly wise words Mr. President.

You can find the video of the speech here.