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Economic Impacts Of Civil Unrest

The civil disturbance that started in Minneapolis after the killing by police of George Floyd spread to 20 other states — an unprecedented property insurance catastrophe that will likely impact policy renewals and could even persuade some insurers to exclude coverage for damage caused by riots, executives for Verisk’s Property Claim Services said. “In the U.S., there has been no precedent for a riot catastrophe like this,” Tom Johansmeyer, head of PCS, said during a telephone interview with the Claims Journal on Thursday.

Paralyzed Companies Rescued By An ‘Army’ Of Volunteer Workers

The Productive Workers' Army (EPO) is a grassroots movement composed of Venezuelan workers that came together in 2014. They dedicate their volunteer labor to rescuing various companies that have been paralyzed because of the economic situation which the country is going through, the shortages of spare parts and supplies due to the US blockade, and the various kinds of political destabilization. The movement, with 2,270 members spread across the country, defines itself as "an unconventional army to win an unconventional war." When the EPO is contacted by workers from the company in trouble, those best placed -- according to the sector to be treated and the geographical location of the company -- visit the entity to "diagnose the critical productive knots.”

Tech Companies Make Appeal To Save Net Neutrality

By Ali Breland for The Hill. Hundreds of tech companies and groups, including Twitter, Airbnb, Reddit and Vimeo, are urging the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to keep the Obama-era net neutrality rules. In a letter to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai dated on Cyber Monday, the companies touted the growth of e-commerce as “a testament to the power of the free and open internet to encourage entrepreneurship, drive innovation, make our lives easier, and to support a healthy economy.” "The internet is increasingly where commerce happens," the letter said, noting that Americans last year spent nearly $3.5 billion on Cyber Monday.

How Education Became A Business And Forgot The Students

Devon Douglas-Bowers in Occupy - Students attend college to pursue their interests, broaden their intellectual horizons and make headway toward a career. While this is made difficult due to the amount of debt that many must saddle in order to earn a degree, there is also another, much stealthier problem as well: the college bureaucracy. University bureaucracies absorb large amounts of funding and undermine the alleged goal of college, which is to provide an education. But they also signal something more sinister: the neo-liberalization of education, now viewed as a business. The rise in college bureaucracy is nothing new, and has been noted for quite some time.

St. Louis Businesses Warned Of Unrest After Grand Jury Verdict

A St. Louis property manager is warning businesses near the St. Louis County courthouse to prepare for “civil unrest” in the wake of the imminent grand jury decision in the Michael Brown shooting. Public demonstrations and random acts of violence have plagued the St. Louis area since August, when a white police officer shot and killed an unarmed, black teenager in the North St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, MO. The warning to businesses came by way of a letter, dated October 21, addressed to “all tenants” in The Boulevard shopping center in Richmond Heights, MO. The shopping center is less than a mile and a half from the site of the grand jury proceeding in Clayton, MO.

Owner Keeps Paying Employees After Fire

In a world smattered with corporate greed, it is good to hear some uplifting news, and the owner of Culver’s restaurant in Platteville, Wisconsin is providing just that. Bruce Kroll owned Culver’s for over 19 years, but last November the entire building was destroyed in a fire, leaving 40 employees wondering how they would make a living. Kroll did something few would even consider – he continued to pay his employees – out of his own pocket – for six months until he could rebuild. This restaurant re-opened just this past week. The employees weren’t asked to pay back the $144,000 that Kroll was out while paying them for not working. He simply asked them to pay it forward with community volunteer work. You can watch a video of his employees talking about this unusual, but welcomed the act of kindness, here.

Germany Cancels Verizon Contract Over NSA Spying

The German government has cancelled a contract with U.S. telecoms firm Verizon Communications Inc VZ.N as part of an overhaul of its internal communications, prompted by revelations last year of U.S. government spying. Reports based on disclosures by former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden alleged Washington had conducted mass surveillance in Germany and had even eavesdropped on Chancellor Angela Merkel's mobile phone. Berlin subsequently demanded talks with Washington on a "no-spy" deal, but these collapsed after the United States appeared unwilling to give the assurances Germany wanted. Germany also launched an overhaul of its internal communications and secure government networks. This is one of the first actions involving a U.S. firm to result. "The pressures on networks as well as the risks from highly developed viruses or Trojans are rising," Germany's Interior Ministry said in a statement on Thursday. "Furthermore, the ties revealed between foreign intelligence agencies and firms in the wake of the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) affair show that the German government needs a very high level of security for its critical networks."
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