Despite recording $5.6 billion in profits in 2017, Amazon paid zero in federal taxes, thanks to “various tax credits and tax breaks for executive stock options,” according to a new study. Amazon, whose founder and CEO Jeff Bezos is now the richest person in the world, estimates it will get nearly $800 million in additional tax relief from the new Republican tax bill. NewRepublic.com
President Trump’s companies sold more than $35 million in real estate in 2017, mostly to secretive shell companies that obscure buyers’ identities. In the two years before the former businessman won the Republican presidential nomination, 4 percent of Trump buyers used limited liability companies to shield their identity. In the year after, the rate soared to about 70 percent.
Smoking-related diseases killed 492,438 Americans last year and 7 million globally, according to a new report by The Tobacco Atlas. For each death, the tobacco industry makes a profit of $9,730.
The New York Times
The Trump administration has set a new record for the censorship of public records. Out of 823,222 requests filed under the Freedom of Information Act last year, the government censored or failed to provide records in 78 percent of cases. When appeals were filed, the Trump administration admitted to improperly withholding information in more than 33 percent of those cases.
62% of Americans say they are very or somewhat concerned about Russian interference in the 2018 midterm elections. Overall, just 31% approve of President Trump’s handling of the Russia investigation, but 67% of Republicans approve.
In a poll ranking of presidents who’ve served since 1945, Ronald Reagan comes in first with 28%. Barack Obama is second with 24%, and Bill Clinton and John Kennedy tie at 10%. Donald Trump was named the worst president by 41%, Obama by 21%, and Nixon by 10%.