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Blistering column destroys ‘Princess Ivanka’ over ties to mobsters and shady business deals

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An opinion column in the Los Angeles Times artfully lays out the case for Ivanka Trump’s complicity in some of her father’s worst deeds.

“Oh, Ivanka. Her livelihood is as opaque as her full-coverage foundation, but she plays a critical role in her father’s administration—and in the broader danse macabre of corruption and legitimacy,” writes columnist Virginia Heffernan.

Heffernan draws a line between Ivanka’s “petroleum-based separates, many of them sewn for poverty pay in sweatshops” and Michael Flynn, the former national security advisor who has admitted that he lied to the FBI.

“[Ivanka] praised him for his ‘amazing loyalty’ and offered him his choice of positions at a transition-team meeting… It was like Princess Ivanka had laid the sword on Flynn’s shoulders and said, ‘Rise and go forth.'”

In addition to Flynn, as Heffernan points out, Ivanka was tied to Felix Sater, who pleaded guilty to a $40-million stock fraud scheme orchestrated by Russian mobsters, and the late Tamir Sapir, who was tied to a racketeering conspiracy with the Gambino crime family.

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“It’s impossible to keep track of all the gangsters Ivanka has palled around with,” the column reads.

But, Heffernan argues, it’s the shady real estate deals that are “even worse.”

Read it in full here.

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‘White Identity Politics’ and white backlash: How we wound up with a racist in the White House

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Today's Republican Party is the largest, most powerful and most dangerous white racist organization in the United States -- if not the world. Donald Trump, the president of the United States, is its leader. These are plain if not understated facts. No embellishment is needed. The examples are many.  Over the last few days Donald Trump has repeatedly dug into his bucket of racist political scatology, saying on Twitter and elsewhere that four nonwhite members of Congress ("Progressive' Democrat Congresswomen," as he mockingly put it) should leave America and go back to their own "crime infested" and "totally broken" countries.

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Trump’s packed Supreme Court backs ‘forced arbitration’ that bars workers from taking abusive bosses to court

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Corporations are rapidly rendering sexual harassment, race and gender discrimination, life-threatening workplaces and wage theft immune to employee legal action.

They achieve this by forcing the vast majority of non-union private-sector workers to sign away their rights to go to court or use class or collective arbitration. Instead many millions of workers are being forced to forgo these efficient legal ways to resolve issues and to file individual arbitration claims.

A new report from the Economic Policy Institute and the Center for Popular Democracy says that by 2024 more than 80% of non-union private-sector workers will find courthouse doors chained shut by forced arbitration clauses that ban lawsuits and collective actions. (EPI is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank created in 1986 to press the needs of low- and middle-income workers in economic policy discussions.)

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Corporations can legally put carcinogens in our food without warning labels — here’s why

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A recent study by the Environmental Working Group revealed something horrifying: Glyphosate, the active ingredient in the popular weedkiller Roundup, was present in 17 of the 21 oat-based cereal and snack products at levels considered unsafe for children. That includes six different brands of Cheerios, one of the most popular American cereals.

I've written before about the limits of corporate free speech when it comes to public safety, but on that occasion I discussed this insofar as it involved corporate-sponsored climate change denialism. Yet here we have something more tangible, more direct: The safe glyphosate limit for children is 160 parts per billion (ppb), yet Honey Nut Cheerios Medley Crunch has 833 parts per billion and regular Cheerios has 729 ppb. While the potential risks of glyphosate are fiercely debated, many scientists believe that it is linked to cancer.

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