By on January 28, 2020

Policing a population is expensive. Law enforcement departments around the globe have long sought a way to tamp down costs or, more often, find better forms of supplemental revenue. Unfortunately, sending the SWAT team on a raid or hiring additional officers to patrol the highway for speeders costs money. But the price of surveillance technology continues to go down, encouraging agencies to tap into their rather robust capabilities — potentially at our expense.

China, the world leader in mass government surveillance, already has the ability to use its vast network of cameras to take over all manner of on-the-street policing. Electronic eyes are everywhere, often networked to facial recognition or plate identification technologies that enable authorities to mail you a ticket for speeding, jaywalking, or whatever else the patrolman failed to see you do in person. While some of the penalties stop at being publicly shamed via a national database or having your social credit score dropped (potentially barring you from some goods and services), these systems have also increased the number of finable offenses that make departments money.

While similar systems have been available in the United States, it seems the country’s penchant for liberty has drastically slowed their implementation. Yet it’s still happening, and there’s reason to suggest items like license plate readers and facial recognition software will soon become standard equipment for many (if not most) North American police departments.  (Read More…)

By on January 23, 2020

2015 Volkswagen Jetta TDI brown

While it absolutely pales in comparison to the fines levied in the United States, Volkswagen will still have to fork over a pile to appease the Canadians.

This week, the automaker pleaded guilty to 60 charges relating to its deception of regulators and consumers with emissions-rigged diesel vehicles. While $196.5 million sounds like small potatoes in this day and age, it happens to be the largest monetary fine for an environmental crime in the country’s history. (Read More…)

By on January 22, 2020

Earlier this month, two GM engineers were arrested in Bowling Green, Kentucky for illegally street racing the new 2020 Chevrolet Corvette. Three Stingrays were present, but only two of the men were caught breaking the law. Kentucky State Police stopped Alexander Thim and Mark Derkatz on January 8th, on Lovers Lane in Bowling Green, for exceeding the road’s 45-mph speed limit.

Thim was busted doing 120 mph while Derkatz settled on a nice, round 100 mph, according to local outlet WNKY. However, even 26 mph over the limit would be enough to haul them into custody and set court dates that could end in a suspended license. It seems the two men were also fired from General Motors for hooning the mid-engined C8 before the general public was provided the opportunity. (Read More…)

By on January 22, 2020

A long-standing legal battle pitting Tesla against the state of Michigan has finally been resolved. It was announced Wednesday that the automaker’s 2016 suit against the state, which forbids the direct-sales model employed by Tesla, ended in a settlement a day earlier.

The result? A way for Michigan residents to own and conveniently service a Tesla in the notoriously protectionist state. (Read More…)

By on January 14, 2020

Passat TDI engine, Picture Courtesy of Volkswagen

The fallout from a scandal that broke in September 2015 after percolating for years has spilled over into the new decade. German prosecutors have laid charges against six Volkswagen employees whom they claim played a role in deceiving regulators and the public.

While the vehicles involved in the diesel emissions scandal have either been fixed or crushed, Germany’s still marching ahead with its investigation into the matter, seeking out those who helped fool the world into believing the brand’s “clean diesel” technology was legit. (Read More…)

By on January 9, 2020

UAW

UAW President Rory Gamble, who took the helm of a scandal-rocked union following the resignation of former prez Gary Jones late last year, is reportedly under federal investigation himself.

Gamble embarked on a wide-ranging clean-up operation soon after taking the job in the hopes of avoiding federal oversight, while at the same time charting a bribery- and corruption-free path forward for the union. The investigation’s scope is a broad one, peering beneath every stone, and Gamble claims this particular probe is par for the course. (Read More…)

By on January 8, 2020

Former Renault and Nissan boss and current fugitive from Japanese justice Carlos Ghosn said he’d open up in front of the cameras, and boy, did he ever. After discussing what he says was brutal confinement and “injustice” at the hands of Japanese officials, as well as the motivation behind the alleged “plot” to oust him from his Nissan chairman position, Ghosn meandered into other topics of interest.

Clearly, the former auto titan wishes nothing but the worst for the company he once chaired. (Read More…)

By on January 8, 2020

Carlos Ghosn

There’s no love lost between former Renault and Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn and the judiciary of Japan, and the same goes for the automaker that dropped him as chairman following his November 2018 arrest — an arrest he fled in the waning days of 2019.

A fugitive from justice following his daring escape from Japanese authorities, Ghosn opened up during a Wednesday press conference in Beirut, Lebanon, reserving his harshest remarks for Nissan and the country in which its head office resides. (Read More…)

By on January 7, 2020

Tokyo prosecutors issued an arrest warrant for Carlos Ghosn’s wife Carole on Tuesday for allegedly lying during testimony. While Japanese authorities have also speculated that she may have helped orchestrate the movie-like escape of her husband from the island nation, something Mr. Ghosn proactively denied, she’s only officially charged with perjury.

The warrant accuses Carole Ghosn of having falsely denied knowing or meeting individuals tied to the company who received payments from Nissan Motor before funneling a portion of those funds to a firm owned by her husband — which is one of the reasons why he was arrested in the first place(Read More…)

By on January 6, 2020

Carlos Ghosn Rogue Introduction - Image: Nissan

Perhaps former Renault and Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn will put rumors to rest when he speaks to the media on Wednesday. Then again, the international fugitive, who fled house arrest in Japan to a refuge in Lebanon on December 29th, might remain tight-lipped about the details of his escape, as Ghosn’s main beef is with Nissan and the Japanese judiciary.

As a new week dawns, so too does another take on Ghosn’s flight from justice. (Read More…)

By on January 3, 2020

Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn unveils redesigned Maxima “4 Door Spor - Image: Nissan

The Carlos Ghosn escape saga continues to evolve without any help from the man himself. Stating Thursday that he alone orchestrated his escape from Japan, where the former auto titan was living under house arrest, Ghosn has not offered the full story on how he slipped out of the country and made his way to Lebanon.

What is clear is that Ghosn’s two-part escape involved the use of two private aircraft and a plane swap in Turkey. The operator of those aircraft isn’t happy. (Read More…)

By on January 2, 2020

Carlos Ghosn’s escape from Japan seemed an epic affair, but the man who was reportedly smuggled out of the country in a musical instrument case by mercenaries posing as a Gregorian band wants to make one thing clear.

The former Renault CEO and Nissan chairman added to the story via a statement released Thursday. (Read More…)

By on January 2, 2020

Carlos Ghosn - Titan intro - Image: Nissan

The former auto giant who once hosted a Marie Antoinette-themed wedding party at the Palace of Versailles (and later reimbursed Renault for the supposedly “corporate” event) had his wife to thank for being able to spend New Year’s Eve as a free — but wanted — man.

According to Lebanese news outlet MTV, Carole Ghosn was the mastermind of her husband’s escape from Japan, where Carlos was being held under house arrest while awaiting trial. Like his wedding, Carlos Ghosn’s flight from captivity had all the flair of a blockbuster film plot. (Read More…)

By on December 30, 2019

Former Nissan Chairman Carlos Ghosn’s flight from Japan, where we was awaiting trial on charges of underreporting income and breach of trust, has been confirmed by none other than the man himself.

Late Monday, Ghosn issued a message from Lebanon. (Read More…)

By on December 30, 2019

Carlos Ghosn Rogue Introduction - Image: Nissan

Japanese authorities are attempting to confirm reports that former Nissan and Renault chairman Carlos Ghosn, arrested in Japan in November 2018 and since charged with two counts each of improper financial reporting and breach of trust, has fled the country.

Numerous media reports claim Ghosn, who holds Lebanese (as well as French and Brazilian) citizenship, appeared in Beirut on Monday. How he managed to slip out of the country where he was awaiting trial is still murky. (Read More…)

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