The Skimm -> What to say when you hear a noise when you’re alone.

The Skimm -> What to say when you hear a noise when you’re alone.

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Skimm’d after catching up on some zzz’s


  QUOTE OF THE DAY  
“It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes” – Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton, responding to a question from a reporter who is also a woman. Ha.
   
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The Story

EU regulators are saying ‘show me the money’ to Apple and Amazon.

Gimme some background.

For years, tech companies have been moving parts of their businesses overseas to countries that offer better tax deals. The idea being: companies save money, and countries become investment hubs for some of the biggest names in tech. Win, meet, win. Except now, not so much. The EU says these tax deals are illegal if competitors aren’t getting the same VIP treatment.

What does this have to do with Apple and Amazon?

The EU says Ireland charged Apple a corporate tax rate of almost zero in recent years. Officials have already tried to get the money but Apple has been fighting back and Ireland hasn’t been cooperating. The EU says Amazon also paid wayyy less in taxes to Luxembourg than it should have. This wouldn’t be the first time Luxembourg’s been accused of helping a company save an extra dollar. The ‘Zon says it never received special treatment, and will consider whether to appeal.

So where are we now?

The EU says Apple and Amazon need to write some very big checks. As in nearly $300 million in Amazon’s case, and nearly $15 billion for Apple. It also said it’s taking Ireland to the EU’s highest court for slacking off on a deadline to get its money back from The Fruit.

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For years, there’s been a tug of war between those who say these tax deals make the EU more competitive, and those who say they’re just big corporate handouts. Looks like one side is starting to win out.

  
REPEAT AFTER ME…

What to say when you hear a noise when you’re alone…

Russia…? Yesterday, the Senate Intelligence Committee took the mic. It’s been investigating whether the Trump campaign helped Russia mess with the US election. Now, it has a few takeaways to share with the class. They still don’t know if Trump’s team was involved. But what they do know is that Russia interfered in the election, that it’s still trying to interfere today, and that it will probably ramp up again in the 2018 midterms. Meanwhile it came out that last year, possible Russian-linked Facebook ads targeted Michigan and Wisconsin – two swing states that Trump won on Election Day. Aaaaand Russia may be targeting the personal phones of NATO soldiers. This is reportedly to gather intel on things like troop operations, and also to psych them out. Very nice.

  

What people are talking about…

Gun laws. Yesterday, a group of Democratic senators introduced a bill that would make so-called bump stocks illegal. Earlier this week in Las Vegas, a 64-year-old man shot and killed 58 people and wounded hundreds of others. And at least a dozen bump stocks were found in the hotel room where he carried out the attack. Bump stocks: attachments you can get online that make semiautomatic weapons more like a machine gun by allowing it to fire bullets faster. There are a lot of regulations against machine guns, making them pretty hard to buy in most states. But bump stocks are still legal. The bill introduced yesterday tries to close that loophole. A few Republicans have said they’re interested in learning more, and that they’re open to it.

  

What people are watching…

Niger. Yesterday, three US special forces troops were killed and two were wounded in an ambush there. The US reportedly said they were likely attacked by an al-Qaeda affiliate. This is the first time US troops have died under fire during this mission, in which the US is helping train forces in Niger to fight extremist groups. Niger – a poor, sparsely populated West African country – has been seriously struggling to battle jihadist groups in the region, even with the help of the US and France. It’s dealing with groups like an al-Qaeda affiliate, Boko Haram, and a new-ish Islamic State affiliate. Just…great. PS: Here’s your Skimm on the different terror groups making headlines.


What to say when your boss is behind you…

Hope I didn’t say anything bad. Yesterday, Sec. of State Rex Tillerson tried to clear up a few things. Earlier this week, a report came out that Tillerson considered resigning this summer after clashing with President Trump over policy. The two haven’t always exactly been on the same page. See: last weekend, when Trump publicly disagreed with Tillerson’s diplomatic approach to North Korea…in a tweet. This week’s report also said that at one point, Tillerson called Trump a “moron.” Yesterday, Tillerson said the rumors of his almost-resignation are so not true. As for the moron comment? A State Dept spokesperson had to deny that one later.

  

What to say when your song comes on at karaoke…

I’ll take it from here. Yesterday, the Minnesota Lynx made history when they beat the Los Angeles Sparks to win their fourth WNBA title. And Sylvia Fowles officially reached GOAT status when she took home the MVP. Swoosh, there it is.

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