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accuses McDonald's

McDonald’s accuses ousted CEO Steve Easterbrook of hiding sexual relationships with employees – CBS News

When McDonald’s canned Stephen Easterbrook as CEO in 2019 for having what he and the company described as a consensual relationship with an employee, the parting was relatively straightforward — and highly lucrative for the ousted CEO, who walked away with a compensation package reportedly worth more than $40 million. Eight months later, the fast-food giant is suing its former chief executive to recoup the money, claiming he had sexual relationships with multiple employees and tried to cover them up.

In a lawsuit filed Monday in Delaware, McDonald’s accuses Easterbrook of having relationships with an additional three employees in the year before his termination, alleging he “concealed evidence and lied about his wrongdoing.” The suit further alleges that Easterbrook approved an extraordinary stock grant worth hundreds of thousands of dollars for one of the workers.

The company’s case against Easterbrook includes dozens of naked or explicit photographs and videos of different women — including some McDonald’s employees — that Easterbrook allegedly sent as attachments to his personal email account from his work account in late 2018 or early 2019.

Lawyers representing Easterbrook didn’t immediately respond to emails requesting comment.

Stephen Easterbrook
Former McDonald’s CEO Stephen Easterbrook unveils the company’s new corporate headquarters during a grand opening ceremony on June 4, 2018, in Chicago, Illinois.

Getty


McDonald’s contends Easterbrook’s exit should not have included severance pay because the company had reason to fire him for cause and he deceived company investigators, according to the complaint.

An employee recently came forward with new information regarding Easterbrook’s conduct, which “deviated from our values in different and far more extensive ways than we were aware when he left,” wrote Easterbrook’s replacement, Chris Kempczinski, in a note to employees. “This new information makes it clear that he lied and destroyed evidence regarding inappropriate personal behavior and should not have retained the contractual compensation he did upon his exit.” 

At the time, Easterbrook told McDonald’s employees in an email that he agreed with the board that it was time for him to move on. He also offered congratulations to Kempczinski on his promotion, saying: “I know you will support him as you have supported me — he’s lucky to have a team of your caliber.”


McDonald’s CEO on new values, social change

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McDonald’s executive severance policy for executives states that an employee’s termination will be defined as “for cause” when there is a “material violation of McDonald’s standards of business conduct or other employment policies.”

In November, McDonald’s board of directors opted to classify Easterbrook’s termination as “without cause.” That entitled him to $675,000 in severance and health insurance benefits and stock awards valued in the tens of millions.

Until his exit, Easterbrook was highly regarded for introducing technological innovations such as touch-screen ordering, with McDonald’s shares roughly doubling in value during his more than four years at the helm. The England native had previously worked at the company for almost two decades.

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accuses Democrats

Cruz accuses Democrats of coordinated effort to keep schools, businesses closed to hurt Trump – Fox News

Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz on Sunday accused Democrats of deliberately seeking to extend coronavirus lockdowns of businesses and schools so that President Trump suffers politically ahead of the presidential election.

Democratic-aligned teachers’ unions have remained opposed to opening schools. In Los Angeles, the teachers’ union has made overtly political demands as part of its reopening plan, including defunding the police, taxing the wealthy, implementing a moratorium on charter schools, providing “Medicare-for-all,” and obtaining more federal funding.

“We’re 100 days out from the presidential election — the only objective Democrats have is to defeat Donald Trump,” Cruz told CBS News’ “Face the Nation,” anchored by Margaret Brennan. “And they’ve cynically decided [the] best way to defeat Donald Trump is shut down every business in America, shut down every school in America.”

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Cruz specifically took issue with Democrats’ plan for a new coronavirus relief bill, which Congress is expected to take up this week. Brennan noted that top Republicans and the White House have also signaled support for a new round of stimulus relief, including $1,200 stimulus checks and tax credits for businesses. Top White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow also suggested Sunday the White House would extend the federal eviction moratorium.

But, Cruz urged them to focus on a broader recovery bill.

“The policy that [House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats are pushing adds an additional $600 a week of federal money to unemployment,” Cruz said. “Except, the problem is, for 68 percent of people receiving it right now, they are being paid more on unemployment than they made in their job.”

That was a concern that some Republicans voiced back in March, although it prompted some skepticism from economic analysts urging for a quick jumpstart to the economy. (“The weird thing about this hypothetical ‘generous unemployment pay will discourage people from entering critical industries’ is… they could just raise wages?” Alex Godofsky wrote on Twitter at the time. “Amazon has already raised wages. Like, it’s okay if wages — and prices — go up for a while. It’s fine.”)

On Sunday, though, Cruz said the problem has become more than hypothetical.

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“And I’ll tell you, I’ve spoken to small business owners all over the state of Texas who are trying to reopen and they’re calling their waiters and waitresses, they’re calling their busboys, and they won’t come back,” Cruz continued. “And, of course, they won’t come back because the federal government is paying them, in some instances, twice as much money to stay home.”

In the alternative, Cruz argued in favor of a payroll tax cut and lifting economic restrictions. Although Brennan suggested that those initiatives could come later, Cruz said it’s important to consider them immediately.

“What we ought to focus on, instead of just shoveling trillions out the door, we ought to be passing a recovery bill. Now, what’s a recovery bill? A recovery bill would be lifting the taxes and the regulations that are hammering small businesses so that people can go back to work. A recovery bill would suspend the payroll tax, which would give it a — a pay raise to everyone in America who’s working. That actually gets people back to work.”

Cruz was conducting the interview from his home in Houston, where the U.S. ordered the Chinese Consulate closed, alleging it was involved in rampant theft of secrets. The FBI has said scores of Chinese military-linked researchers lied on their visas to gain access to U.S. research in other institutions.

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Cruz noted he has long sounded the alarm on China — “the last time I did this show was from Hong Kong in October,” he said, adding that he was dressed in “all black in solidarity” with pro-democracy protesters.

“One of the most, in fact, the most significant foreign policy consequence of this pandemic is people are understanding the threat China poses,” Cruz said. “And in particular, this virus originated because of communist China’s deliberate cover up. They arrested, they silenced the heroic Chinese whistleblowers that tried to stop this at the outset.”

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accuses Fisher

Ray Fisher Accuses Joss Whedon of ‘Abusive, Unprofessional’ Behavior on ‘Justice League’ Set – Variety

Actor Ray Fisher accused director Joss Whedon of “gross, abusive, unprofessional, and completely unacceptable” behavior on the set of the 2017 film “Justice League,” in a tweet that quickly went viral on Wednesday.

Fisher also claimed in his tweet on Wednesday that former Warner Bros. co-president of production Jon Berg, and former DC Entertainment president and chief creative officer Geoff Johns, both “enabled” Whedon’s alleged behavior on “Justice League.” Berg and Johns also served as producers on “Justice League,” and the film’s poor performance was a factor in both executives exiting their positions leading the DC Films unit at the studio.

Fisher offered no corroboration for his claims, and attempts to reach his representatives for further clarification went unanswered.

Whedon had no comment. A representative for Warner Bros. did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

When reached for comment on Wednesday afternoon, Berg told Variety that it was  “categorically untrue that we enabled any unprofessional behavior.”

“I remember [Fisher] being upset that we wanted him to say ‘Booyaa,’ which is a well known saying of Cyborg in the animated series,” Berg added.

Joss Wheadon’s on-set treatment of the cast and crew of Justice League was gross, abusive, unprofessional, and completely unacceptable.

He was enabled, in many ways, by Geoff Johns and Jon Berg.

Accountability>Entertainment

— Ray Fisher (@ray8fisher) July 1, 2020

Whedon — the director of Marvel Studios’ blockbuster superhero movies “The Avengers” and “Avengers: Age of Ultron” — took over directing duties for extensive additional photography on the DC comics adaptation from Zack Snyder, after Snyder left the project due to a death in his family. Fisher played the cybernetic superhero Cyborg in the film, alongside Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman, Ben Affleck’s Batman, Henry Cavill’s Superman, Jason Momoa’s Aquaman, and Ezra Miller’s the Flash.

The resulting film received mixed-to-negative reviews and grossed a disappointing $657.9 million worldwide; more importantly, the tonal mix of Snyder and Whedon’s sensibilities led many fans to see the film as an unacceptable compromise of Snyder’s true vision. That led to a years-long grassroots fan campaign to “release the Snyder cut” of “Justice League,” which was ultimately successful: Snyder announced in May that his cut of the film will debut on HBO Max in 2021.

Fisher hinted at friction with Whedon earlier this week, when he tweeted a clip from the “Justice League” panel at the 2017 San Diego Comic-Con in which he praised the filmmaker as “a great guy” and that Snyder “picked a good person to come in and clean-up — and finish up for him.”

“I’d like to take a moment to forcefully retract every bit of this statement,” Fisher tweeted.

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accuses Trump

Trump accuses media of trying to ‘shame’ him over holding Tulsa rally amid coronavirus | TheHill – The Hill

President TrumpDonald John TrumpRon Perlman, Matt Gaetz get into back-and-forth on Twitter The NYT and the Cotton op-ed: Opinion or party line?  Robert Gates joins calls for Army bases named after Confederate leaders to be renamed MORE on Monday accused the news media of attempting to “shame” his reelection campaign over plans to hold a rally during the coronavirus pandemic, accusing them of having “no Covid problem” in their coverage of nationwide protests against police brutality.

“The Far Left Fake News Media, which had no Covid problem with the Rioters & Looters destroying Democrat run cities, is trying to Covid Shame us on our big Rallies. Won’t work!” Trump tweeted, suggesting the coverage of the protests had not pointed out risks of the demonstrations possibly leading to a spread of the coronavirus.

The president is scheduled to hold a rally in Tulsa, Okla., on Saturday, his first campaign rally since March after the campaign suspended the events as states and the federal government looked to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

Over the weekend, the director of Tulsa’s health department raised concerns with the president’s plan to hold the rally in the city, pointing to a “significant increase” in case trends that would make a large gathering unsafe. 

The editorial board of Tulsa World has called on Trump to reconsider hosting the campaign rally in the city, calling it the “wrong time” to do so during the pandemic.

Trump campaign manager Brad ParscaleBradley (Brad) James ParscaleMORE tweeted later Monday that each guest at the rally would receive a temperature check, hand sanitizer and a mask prior to entering the arena.

The rally is scheduled to take place at the BOK Center, a venue that holds 19,000 people. Those who sign up for tickets to the event need to click a disclaimer that says they acknowledge the risk of exposure to COVID-19 and agree not to sue the Trump campaign or the host venue in the event they contract the disease.

As of Monday, more than 2 million Americans have been infected by the coronavirus and more than 115,000 have died as a result of the virus, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University.

A number of states across the country have seen spikes in cases and hospitalizations as they relax restrictions meant to curb the spread of the disease so that businesses can reopen and the economy, which has been devastated by the pandemic, can begin to recover.

The Saturday rally has already been rescheduled once after it was originally announced for Friday, which overlapped with Juneteenth, the day that commemorates the end of slavery.

The timing and location of the event drew swift backlash, particularly given the ongoing unrest over police brutality and racial injustice following the police killing of George Floyd.

Public health officials have also warned about the risk of the protests and other large-scale events spreading the coronavirus.

Demonstrations have broken out across the country in the wake of Floyd’s death last month, attracting thousands of participants. Many protesters have worn masks, but the size of the demonstrations has allowed for little social distancing.

“You know, it’s a danger to the people who are trying to control the demonstration,”Anthony FauciAnthony FauciFauci: Ban on UK travelers likely to last months Texas, Florida, California hit highs for COVID-19 infections in last two weeks Fauci: Attending protests is ‘risky’ MORE, the nation’s top infectious diseases expert, said of the protests on ABC News’s “Powerhouse Politics” podcast on Friday. “And it’s a danger to the people who are demonstrating. So at the end of the day, it is a risky procedure.”

Fauci also said that the same advice was applicable to the president’s campaign rallies.

Trump and his allies have argued that the protests opened the door for the campaign to begin staging rallies again.

“States demonstrated with the protest of last week that crowds don’t appear to be an issue to policymakers or executives of state governments,” Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel said in an interview on Fox News earlier Monday.

McDaniel, like Trump, also suggested that the scrutiny of the decision to hold the rally was disproportionate to that of the protests.

“It’s funny that now that we’re having a Trump rally and we’re bringing people out to celebrate their nominee for their party, all of this scrutiny is coming upon us,” McDaniel said. 

While McDaniel noted she was not involved in the planning for the rally, she said that masks were likely to be optional and argued that those with underlying health conditions would choose not to attend the rally in order to avoid risking exposure. 

Updated at 11:19 a.m.

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accuses Jordan

Jordan accuses media of being ‘cheerleaders at interesting times’ in Michael Flynn investigation – Fox News

House Judiciary Committee ranking member Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, told “The Ingraham Angle” Thursday the media have been “cheerleading” the prosecution of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn since the beginning, citing apparent leaks from the Obama administration that were published at “interesting times.”

Jordan offered a timeline beginning with a Jan. 4, 2017 message from then-FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok to an unidentified individual: “Hey don’t close RAZOR,” referring to “CROSSFIRE RAZOR” the codename for the FBI’s investigation into Flynn.

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“The next day, [FBI Director James] Comey meets with President Obama in the Oval Office and talks about Mike Flynn. [On] January 6th, Comey goes up to New York and briefs President Trump on the [Christopher Steele] dossier that he already knows was false, misleading and paid for by the Clinton campaign and then that leaks [to the press],” Jordan continued.

Six days after Comey briefed Trump on the Steele dossier, Washington Post foreign affairs columnist David Ignatius reported that Flynn had phoned then-Russian ambassador to the U.S. Sergey Kislyak “several times on Dec. 29, the day the Obama administration announced the expulsion of 35 Russian officials …”

In his column, Ignatius asked whether Flynn violated the “spirit” of the Logan Act of 1799.

Jordan claimed Ignatius’ story led to the Jan. 24 questioning of Flynn at the White House by Strzok and FBI agent Joe Pientka. Flynn later pleaded guilty to one count of lying to the FBI, a charge that stemmed from that interview — and that Flynn has sought to rescind.

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“That Ignatius story helped all that play out,” Jordan said. “So they are cheerleaders not just in a general sense for the left and for the Democrats, they are cheerleaders at interesting times in the sequence of events.

“Those are the kinds of things we need to get answers to.”

Fox News’ Gregg Re contributed to this report.

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