Documentary On Lady Diana’s Death Raises Controversies

The documentary directed by Keith Allen about Lady Diana’s death and presented in parallel with Cannes Festival raises accusations regarding the objectiveness of the author, says Reuters.

Allen launched his film, called Unlawful Killing outside the film festival, but still in Cannes. The film concentrates not so much on Princess Diana’s life her last years or her relationship with Dodi, the son of mogul Mohamed al-Fayed, but more on the conditions she died in and the cause of her killing. The film argues that the British press didn’t present the facts properly and this was because the royal family intervened. The Palace’s pressure wouldn’t allow an objective and complete media exposure.  At a press conference, Allen, who is best know for his appearances in TV series, stated that he “thought it was important that the public got to understand in a forensic manner what was happening in this inquest”. Some found it odd and a bit “hostile” that he would name the documentary as “forensic”. He also said that his movie isn’t one to cause “sensationalism”, he did not mean it like that. What he wanted to reveal is that in Princess Diana’s case, the British legal process was lacking information. The movie just presented some of the things that didn’t “add up”. The purpose of the movie is to reveal that “nothing is as it seems” and “they should be questioned. That’s why I made the film” he added.

When the press found out that the film was entirely funded by Mohamed al-Fayed, they questioned Allen on why he signed with the Muslim business man and if he is attacking the monarchy. He answered that nobody else wanted to invest in the documentary and that “it isn’t an attack on the monarchy”.

The film is said to present shocking photos of Diana after the car incident and the British press was concentrated on the fact, but Allen says the images presented in the movie are not shocking and that the media exaggerated a lot. The film isn’t approved in England, because Allen didn’t get the requested insurance for it. He said that in order to get the insurance, the film has to be approved by a lawyer. “I could get lawyer approval if I’d made 87 cuts which I wasn’t prepared to make” he concluded.

Britney Spears is back to compete with Lady Gaga!

    Since her tour in 2009 promoting Circus, the ex teen sensation never got on stage, but now, Britney is back! As promoting her new album called “Femme Fatale”, she performed there songs on Friday night, in Las Vegas. Her mini live concert proved to be a success, because the fans that attended the performance were really thrilled.

Her show lasted  45 minutes in which Spears performed “Hold It Against Me,” “Big Fat Bass” and “Till The World Ends.” During those 45 minutes she and her dancers had three breaks for preparing their costumes for the next set.

All her fans wondered if this concert will actually take place, but their worries disappeared when Britney posted on her Twitter account: “Looks like my little secret isn’t a secret anymore…Who’s coming to watch me take the stage? You’re all invited. Be there or be square b—ch!”
    Britney received some positive reviews regarding her latest album. Jody Rosen an editor for Rolling Stone Magazine, described her album as “a party record packed with sex and sadness.” He also added that “Femme Fatale” might be her best album.

After several breakdowns, hard moments in her life and several attempts to come back on stage, Britney finally seems to be ready for a new life and career. At the concert in Las Vegas she was accompanied by her father Jamie Spears and her boyfriend Jason Trawick. About her new album Britney said: “It’s definitely something that you want to work out to. I’m a dancer so it’s definitely something I can work with. It’s just really fun.”

Britney is back, but can she compete with Gaga?

 

States require online sales tax collection !

The fact that states require online sales tax collection it’s not such a new or surprising idea. Discussions concerning this matter appeared several years ago, but this time it’s seems the pressure is bigger than ever.

A Supreme Court ruling bans collection of the sales taxes, unless the business has a store in that state. Currently, states are trying to find a way to obtain growing revenue, without breaking that law.
    There are many online retailer companies that don’t collect any taxes from their customers and apparently this is a serious problem for the states budget, because potential income is drastically reduced.

sales tax

According to Supreme court, stores like Wal-Mart should collect taxes from customers all over the world, no matter if they shop off or on the Web, because the company has a physical presence (a shop) in every state. But this rule can’t be applied when it comes to websites like Amazon.com, which is based in Seattle.

It’s kind of impossible to collect taxes from Florida shoppers, considering that they don’t have a presence there. The shoppers instead should pay the taxes to their state, but there are very few, who actually do that.
    Lawmakers from California, Illinois and Texas started to think about a strategy in order to force the online retailers to collect taxes from their customers.

Are you an online tax cheat?

As a response, Amazon.com and Overstock.com to give up some affiliates and redirected the traffic to others, in states where there is no threat concerning sales tax. In Colorado, online business owners are forced to either collect a tax, either inform their customers how much money they owe the state, by sending them a legal notice once a year.

It is not known yet how much money the states lost over the years, but there are definitely some wide budget holes, which can’t be covered soon, even it the requirements will be respected.

David Vite, head of the Illinois Retail Merchants Association says: “The choice of the merchant by the customer should not be based on tax policy. It should be based on service, convenience, on the shopping experience and, of course, price, but not price based on tax policy”

Lady Gaga accused of stealing “Born this way”

    Lady Gaga is accused of stealing “Born this way” song…again! Recently, there was something else that drew public attention upon Lady Gaga and this time it was not one of her strange and crazy outfits. It’s about her last song called “Born this way” and no, it’s not because is an incredibly good song, it’s because it might be plagiarized.

The rumors started to pop out less than a week ago, when some music fans (or maybe just Madonna’s) who have listened Gaga’s song, said that it’s very similar to Express Yourself by Madonna. There were several discussions on this topic, some said “Born this way” has nothing to to with “Express Yourself”, others said the similarities are obvious.
    Now, Gaga is again accused by plagiarism, and this time could end badly. A South Korean production team claims that her most recent single sounds like “Be happy” a song which they wrote for a nine-member South Korean girl group called SNSD.

The Korean band released the song last year on their album called “Oh!”. After listening to Gaga’s “Born This Way”, the production team E-Tribe are planning to contact the pop-star managers and ask for a legal investigation concerning the similarities between the two songs. A representative for E-tribe said: “I listened, and I do feel that there are similarities. The way the song flows and the arrangements are, honestly, the same.”    
    Users of YouTube made a video in which they put the two tracks together, in order to compare them. Listen to yourself and figure it out: just how obvious is the similarity between “Born this way” and “Be happy”?

How it affects you that you are jobless?

Have you ever wondered how it affects that you are jobless? A recent study conducted by Alan Krueger of Princeton University and Andreas Mueller of Stockholm University, for the Brookings Institution showed the negative effects of the long term unemployment. The results of the study are not encouraging at all.

Even lately, more jobs started to appear and the layoffs are not so often as they used to be, for those whohaven’t worked for a long period of time, things are not likely to improve. The study shows that the longer is the period of unemployment for a person, the less likely for that person is to find a job.

no job effectThe study was based on interviews conducted on a group of 6.000 people, all of them being unemployed workers. They were interviewed weekly, for 24 weeks between late 2009 and early 2010. Here’s what the researchers found out:
-The more distant is the period when you had a job, the less is the time you spend looking for a new one. The authors call this effect “noteworthy” and they use an example to illustrate it: somebody who is unemployed for 12 weeks will spend around a half an hour daily looking for a new job.
-People are motivated to look for a job, when their unemployment benefits are almost to expire. As long as they have this benefits, they are not encouraged to find a job.
-The most important discovery in this study, was the psychological effect of the unemployment period. People often express much “dissatisfaction and unhappiness with their lives” and things are getting worse if their search for a job is unsuccessful. Also the authors mentioned that jobless people tend to sleep more in order to compensate the lack of activity.
    Even the future doesn’t look promising when it comes to people who are currently out of work, it is recommended to stay positive.

Use your time for doing things you like, concentrate on your hobbies, spend time with family and friends and do not stop looking for a job, because you don’t want to minimize your chances of working.

Julie Taymor Spider-man musical show director steps down

    Julie Taymor, the director and co-book writer will no longer continuing with her daily duties. The show’s producers Jeremiah J. Harris and Michael Cohl took this decision after the official opening of the musical has been pushed from 15 March to a non-specified date in “early summer, 2011”.

The producers said that “Julie’s previous commitments mean that past March 15th, she cannot work the 24/7 (schedule) necessary to make the changes in the production in order to be ready for our opening”, but they added that she will remain part of the creative team.

As she prepares to take a demoted role on the $65 million musical it was reported that rock star Bono is to take control in a last ditch effort to rescue the accident prone production. The most expensive Broadway show will delay opening for sixth time due to the events.
    Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, playwright and comic-book writer, Broadway director Phil McKinley, sound designer Peter Hylenski and  musical consultant Paul Bogaev have all been brought together as a new management team to help with the changes in the show.

“We cannot exaggerate how technically difficult it is to make such changes to a show of this complexity,” the producers said. Bono and The Edge, who wrote the production’s music and lyrics, have announced that they are working at “a couple of new songs we are very very excited about putting into the mix.” They also referred at ex-director  Taymor as being a “truly gifted and imaginative director.”    
    Despite all the problems faced until now, which include a string of injuries to cast and crew, technical mishaps and cost over-runs, the musical has fared well at the box office – last week the show took $1.28m (£790,000), the second highest behind smash hit Wicked. As for when Spider-man musical show will get a  clear new opening date, all Bono and The Edge had to say was this: “We are confident (the show) will reach its full potential and when it does, it will open.”

Tax evasion

The objective is to detect deviations greater between the estimated debt and debt declared, crossing all available information on the city. When you notice an excessive difference between the actual capacity of expenditure and income declared, immediately snap checks of the Guardia di Finanza.

The impact of expenditure in the new Redditometro will be calculated according to the composition of families and geographic location.

This is the first measure implemented by the Ministry of Economy (wanted by Tremonti) to intensify the fight against tax evasion. Will cross the data on income, on homes, cars, boats taxpayers. The Financial Police showed reporters the first use of the new instrument were controlled taxpayers who have purchased this year alone, a machine cost more of their annual income. The result? Well one hundred thousand Italians spent on “basic” machine more than they said last year. Perhaps it is the case for better control …

Financial Act:the Council of Ministers will be held tomorrow

A financial maneuver of 24 billion euros. This will be the subject of discussion by the Council of Ministers tomorrow, and the People of Liberty will meet this evening at 19:30, to allow the economy minister, Giulio Tremonti, to disclose the plan he has in mind with his colleagues party.
Speaking by telephone transmission ‘Morning 5’, Undersecretary to the Presidency, Paolo Bonaiuti, confirmed that there will be no tax increases and that the Italian can rest easy.
Optimistic about the maneuver, the Minister of Infrastructure and Transport, Matteoli, that the meeting in La Spezia on the new logistics system axis Tirreno-Brenner, said: “We are still talking about everything, but if the maneuver proposed by my department is the one I mentioned Minister Tremonti seems acceptable. The funds will be, although currently not quantifiable, as well as time. On the third rail crossing from Genoa to the Po valley we passed all that was possible approve.
Support the movement also comes from Luca Cordero di Montezemolo, who from Monza, said: “At this moment we must give maximum support to the government to find resources necessary and urgent, I hope that the boldest possible to defend Italy from international markets, crisis and the risks. “

Retirement for women: requirements for instructions and calculation of the income

Our social security system, wanting to sketch an imaginary portrait, seems to resemble more and more at sea in a continuous movement in search of a balance that is never final. Laws, decrees, debates, declarations of international organizations or political leaders, citizens seem increasingly confused, especially for too many “announcement effects”. When can I retire and how? One of the recurring themes is also often linked to equal opportunities and also benefit the female specificity. What then are the relevant information to the fair sex?
Method of calculation: how to calculate pension for women? The calculation methods are undifferentiated with respect to sex, except for some particular shade should be interpreted in favor. The rules are those introduced by the Dini reform of 1995, whereby the male and female workers were divided by 1 January 1996 in three categories:
workers with more than 18 years of contributions to the December 31, 1995: including the application of the method of pay.
workers under 18 years of contributions at 31 December 1995 are subject to the calculation of pension calculation the so-called mixed (pay for the portion of accrued pension on retirement before 1996, contributions for those acquired thereafter) and access to benefits for As regards the retirement age according to the rules of the pay system (unless they choose the full contribution).
newly hired workers from 1 January 1996 and those opting for the new system are subject to complete the new access rules and the method of calculating contributions.
What is the pension which comes from the method of pay and what is instead the result of the contribution? Applying the first method of calculation determines the pension in respect of earnings in the last period of working life, while conversely the contribution is calculated on the basis of contributions paid over the course of their working life. Going to a greater level of detail:
Pay: the pay method is a method of calculation which provides that the pension amount corresponds to a certain percentage of salary. That connects the pension to the last phase of working life, the key variables for the determination of pension are then incorporated by reference and on the rate of pay calculation.
Contributory: the method of calculating contributions determines the amount of pension contributions paid correlation with the long span of working life of the future percettrice. In the method the contributory amount of the contributions is calculated by multiplying the annual salary for employees or the income of self-employed, the rate calculation (33 per cent for employees and 20 percent for dependents). The sum of contributions results in an upright individual is reassessed annually as capitalization rate whereas the five-year average variation of the GDP (gross domestic product), calculated by Istat. Determining the pension then follows the conversion of that pillar pension on reaching retirement age, multiplied by a coefficient of transformation that takes into account the likelihood of survival and age of the insured to the date when the pension, such coefficients, recently updated as of January 1, 2010, are mixed with respect to sex which is an advantage for women on average live longer than men (about 5 years older).

American hypocrisy

A few weeks ago, the whole world held its breath. Inspired by Paul Volcker, former Fed chief, Barack Obama has solemnly expressed its intention to overhaul American finance. Consider the following: limiting the size of banks and investment ban on own account on the riskiest markets (hedge funds and private equity). What every economist who removed the springs of the crisis had dreamed, the American president should he have done? Nothing is less certain. First, the Volcker plan leaves out many gray areas of the U.S. financial system. So it is with many “Bermuda triangle” regulations that allow entire sectors of American finance (such as the derivatives market) to escape almost any check. Thus it is also the nagging problem of bonuses for traders, which poisons the trading floor for many months. Let us stop deluding themselves in this field. 124 billion dollars in bonuses awarded by the 34 largest U.S. banks: it’s the equivalent of official development assistance or aid from the North to South, and twice the profit made in 2009 by all companies in the CAC 40! “Business as usual! “
But there is perhaps not essential. For the most part is, since the end of the Second World War at least, the ability of the U.S. government to hide behind the Congress to indefinitely reforms do not wish to implement. We can not claim to understand the United States if one considers that the Parliament of this country is as impotent as it is in France. In the United States, Congress dictates, only the tempo of reforms. So, just lost a congressional seat in Massachusetts for Barack Obama, threatened by the sword of Damocles of the midterm elections, is ready to compromise: Show loud and clear his willingness to bend Wall Street to please his electorate while trusting “his” Congress to defeat this attempt moralization of American finance. This is the (sad) reality of democracy in the United States, which regularly relativize the sincerity of the reformist impulses of Barack Obama.
But we can go even further and consider that Volcker is part of an overall plan that aims to strengthen the competitive ability of American finance. Judge for yourself: it is not a raft of reforms initiated by the three G20 (which have met since October 2008) which has resulted in an American retreat. The application of prudential rules of the Bank for International Settlements, known under the pseudonym of “Basel II”? Later perhaps. The promotion of “leverage ratio” (ratio that favors American banks from European banks)? An absolute necessity for Washington. The refusal to seriously regulate the derivatives markets? A profession of faith. The refusal of cooperation with the European authorities in accounting rules? Even punishment, same reason. The obstruction to any regulation of rating agencies, including the two world leaders are American (Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s)? An absolute evidence. Attempts to implode the European model of “universal banking” (which combines the most hazardous and those of the commercial bank, the less) by pushing the formal separation of commercial banking business and banking ? What more natural? These six examples demonstrate that the United States, undermined by its industrialization, will do everything to protect their finances.
What to do in this context, Europe in general and France in particular? First stand firm on the principles defined by the three G20, which had the merit of addressing – finally-sensitive subjects. Then do not lower its guard prescribed by better regulation but not alone. Finally, calling for help from the emerging global governance, and particularly China, which have been excluded from it by the United States for over twenty years, to form a tandem-emerging Europe can do Finally, fold the American finance, the primary cause of the crisis and the first “shooter of chestnuts from the fire” for over six months … This is not win but at least we can dream!