1066: Hunger Stones

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

3h 3m
September 6th, 2018
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Cover Artist: Darren O'Neill

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Zina Bash Is the Woman Sitting Behind Brett Kavanaugh | Heavy.com
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 13:17
Screengrab via Fox News
The woman sitting behind Judge Brett Kavanaugh has emerged as a Twitter star as she has been accused of smirking when Democrats are speaking and looking ''smug'' during the hearing. The woman has been identified as Zina Bash, 36. Bash was sitting directly behind Kavanaugh during the first day of his Supreme Court confirmation hearing on September 4. The hearing has been interrupted by protests from sitting Democrats on the committee as well as vocal protesters who have tried to shut down proceedings. Some protesters have even invoked the popular Hulu TV series, The Handmaid's Tale.
Bash is a seasoned judicial and political mover in the nation's capital. She has worked in D.C. since 2007, for Kavanaugh as well as Senator John Cornyn. In addition, Bash was a director on Ted Cruz's ill-fated presidential campaign in 2016.
Here's what you need to know:
1. Bash Is Regarded as One of the Most Beautiful People in D.C.Zina Bash: ''What they're missing is a long history, a very long record of enforcing laws that protect the American people and the American economy.'' pic.twitter.com/uOvOJ6bSwB
'-- Fox News (@FoxNews) July 22, 2018
In July 2017, Bash was put on The Hill's 50 Most Beautiful list. Bash is identified as a Republican from McAllen, Texas, who is married. She has a daughter named Maria Izabella, who goes by Mabel. Bash's husband is, John Bash III, the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Texas. The couple attended Harvard together. In their 2007 New York Times' wedding announcement, the newspaper wrote Bash was set to become a ''law clerk this month for Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh.'' John Bash was at the time about to begin working as a clerk to then-Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia
John Bash was sworn into the role of U.S. Attorney in April 2018, reports the San Antonio Express-News. The Express report said that John Bash was planning to make border security a priority for his office. He is quoted by the newspaper as saying, ''We are a nation of immigrants, but I don't understand the folks who say we shouldn't enforce the law against people who are literally picked up illegally crossing the border. The folks that criticize our enforcement efforts have an obligation to say what those enforcement efforts should look like.'' John Bash is a native of Columbia, Maryland. Kavanaugh officiated the swearing-in ceremony for John Bash in April 2018, according to the Express-News.
When asked about balancing her career with being a parent, Bash told the Hill, ''Though I miss Mabel tremendously during the day, I have felt that '-- because I'm part of a team working every day to improve the welfare, safety and security of the country she will grow up in '-- I'm doing this for her.''
2. Bash Worked in Immigration Policy for the Trump White House
The profile of Bash in The Hill lists her job as working on the Domestic Policy Council. A year later, Bash was named as the senior counsel to Texas Attorney General, Ken Paxton. The press release announcing her appointment referred to her job in the White House as ''Special Assistant to the President for regulatory reform, legal and immigration policy.''
Shortly after that appointment, Bash was announced by the National Law Journal to be a member of Kavanaugh's confirmation team. Bash is said to have assisted the judge in his preparation for the hearings. Bash was joined by former Arizona Senator Jon Kyl on the confirmation team.
3. Bash Is 'Ridiculously Rich' Getty Kavanaugh and Bash pictured together in July 2018.
Prior to President Trump's election, Bash was the deputy director of policy and communications for U.S. Senator Ted Cruz's presidential campaign. Bash received her bachelor's from Harvard in 2004 and graduated from Harvard Law School in 2007. Above the Law reports that Bash began at Columbia Law School and later transferred to Harvard. Bash also earned an M.B.A from the Wharton School in Pennsylvania in 2013, according to her LinkedIn page. Bash was also previously counsel to Senator John Cornyn.
LinkedIn/ZIna Bash
According to Above the Law, Bash is ''ridiculously rich.'' An anonymous source tells the website, ''The young heiress reports [as much as] $18 million in assets, generating passive income of over $1 million last year'.... [B]ut instead of using her wealth and connections to sit on a beach, she is using it to immerse herself in conservative politics, first as deputy director of policy for Ted Cruz and now for Trump's White House.'' The story goes on to say that Bash's passive income is more like $350,000 per year and that ''her total assets are actually somewhere between $1.8 million and $6.75 million.''
4. Her Father Made a Documentary Titled, 'The Hoax of Man-Made Global Warming'
Bash's father is Dr. Lawrence Richard Gelman, a ''distinguished physician'' in the Rio Grande Valley, so says a feature in Empower Texans. That feature says that Dr. Gelman ''is a second-generation Polish-American Jew whose parents barely escaped the Holocaust and found solace in America.'' Dr. Gelman met his wife, Maria Esperanza, in Monterrey, Mexico, and the couple was married in 1979. They have four children together, Zina, Alexander, Rachel and Sharon. When asked about his politics in the article, Dr. Gelman says, ''I don't belong to anything, I hate politics'...We [as a society] are affected by what goes on in Washington, and Austin; my involvement wasn't intentional, it was more of a self-defense. When you've got your kids, [you] want to try to return the way things used to be, the way things are supposed to be.''
In 2017, Dr. Gelman wrote and produced a documentary called, The Hoax of Man-Made Global Warming. Dr. Gelman called climate activists ''hucksters'' who ''perpetrate ad convenient lie.'' In the early 2000's, Dr. Gelman hosted a political talk radio show titled, Talk Back with Dr. Lawrence Gelman. Dr. Gelman told Texas Border Business about elaborated on his feelings about climate change in an interview. He said, ''We don't believe [man made climate change] is occurring. Climate change and temperature have been going on forever, but it's nothing to do with what man is doing. We believe that it's being used by government and others for their agenda.''
5. Bash Has Been Accused of Using a 'White Power' Hand Symbol During the Hearing, but Her Husband Says It Was Just the 'Random Way She Rested Her Hand'Watching the hearing &people are getting THROWN OUT every few minutes'...EVERY time they kick one out, another speaks up. God bless those people! This is shocking. Not sure who the woman behind kavanaugh is but I have a desire to punch her face.Hard. #StopKavanaugh pic.twitter.com/gn9UWCWHx6
'-- 🍃🏵¸ðŸŒPoison IvyðŸŒðŸµ¸ðŸƒ (@LoveLincoln1980) September 4, 2018
As Kavanaugh's hearing went on, Bash became something of a viral sensation. Here are some of the best reactions to Bash's starring role in the Kavanaugh hearing:
Who is the woman behind #kavanaugh at the hearing with that smug look on her face. She won't be so smug when her grandchildren are forced to have abortions in back alleyways. Nvm, rich women won't have to.
'-- Aneita Williams (@AneitaWilliams2) September 4, 2018
Who is that snarky woman seated next to Don McGahn directly behind Brett Kavanaugh? I hope not to learn that she is a government employee. I could do without her snickering little smile throughout this grave proceeding.
'-- Deborah Sanders (@debsjule) September 4, 2018
Does anyone know who the woman with the long dark hair is sitting behind Kavanaugh? She is getting way more than her 15 minutes.
'-- Patricia A. Smith (@nonconfromist) September 4, 2018
#StopKavanaugh Unbelievable! Who is that woman right behind Kavanaugh making faces and over reacting during the comittee's meeting?No class!
'-- marc andre (@marcandreFL) September 4, 2018
At one point during the hearing, Bash's fingers appeared to be positioned in the ''OK'' sign. Some white supremacists, members of the alt-right and the so-called alt-lite, along with other Trump supporters, have adopted the ''OK'' symbol as a way to troll people on the left. It began on 4chan as a ''troll effort,'' but has become more popular, with many people making the symbol in an effort to ''own the libs,'' according to the Anti-Defamation League. As a result, many have started to believe some usage of the symbol is a signifier of white supremacy or racism. And that led prominent members of the ''Resistance'' and others on the left to accuse her of using a ''white power'' symbol.
Mark Pitcavage, a senior research fellow with the Anti-Defamation League, said, ''It began as a 4chan troll effort (I've written about its origins) but it has evolved into a symbol used by the alt right (and, occasionally, other white supremacists), the alt lite, and also various MAGA-type Trump supporters. Most still use it to troll (to ''own the libs'').''
Bash's husband took to Twitter to deny his wife had meant anything by the position of her fingers.
''The attacks today on my wife are repulsive. Everyone tweeting this vicious conspiracy theory should be ashamed of themselves. We weren't even familiar with the hateful symbol being attributed to her for the random way she rested her hand during a long hearing. Zina is Mexican on her mother's side and Jewish on her father's side,'' John Bash wrote.
YouTube Zina Bash was accused of using a ''white power'' hand gesture while sitting behind Judge Brett Kavanaugh at his confirmation hearing.
John Bash added, ''She was born in Mexico. Her grandparents were Holocaust survivors. We of course have nothing to do with hate groups, which aim to terrorize and demean other people '-- never have and never would. Some of the Twitter comments have even referred to our baby daughter. I know that there are good folks on both sides of the political divide. I hope that people will clearly condemn this idiotic and sickening accusation.''
You can read more about the ''OK'' symbol issue here or by clicking the link below:
The woman sitting behind Judge Brett Kavanaugh is becoming a Twitter star as she has been accused of smirking when Democrats speak and looking "smug."
The woman sitting behind Judge Brett Kavanaugh is becoming a Twitter star as she has been accused of smirking when Democrats speak and looking "smug."
Any Collusion?
Dan Bongino podcast Michael Cohen in Prague done by contractors and wrong guy
SJWBLMLGBBTQQIAAPK
Reiterate Kapernick protest during the MILITARY segment
Kaepernick, you are in a military game show!
Migrants
VIDEO - Chemnitz: German media is one long continuous lie! - YouTube
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 11:45
Clips
VIDEO - Watch Dateline Episode: Ransom - NBC.com
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 14:22
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VIDEO - Megyn Kelly Talks NBC's Handling Of Farrow's Weinstein Investigations | Megyn Kelly TODAY - YouTube
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 13:56
VIDEO - CBS board in negotiations for CEO Moonves exit from the company: sources
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 13:26
CBS's board is deep in settlement talks with Chief Executive Les Moonves that would see his departure and the appointment of COO Joe Ianniello as interim CEO, people close to the negotiations say.
The talks between Moonves and his board have been going on for some time but have yet to reach a conclusion given continued back and forth about his exit package.
While under his contract he is due as much as $180 million in severance and a production deal, sources say the board is offering a roughly $100 million exit package made up almost entirely of CBS stock and wants the right to claw back some of that compensation if at the conclusion of an ongoing investigation into charges of sexual harassment, Moonves has been found to have committed other inappropriate acts.
As was widely reported Wednesday, CBS and its controlling shareholder National Amusements Inc. are currently negotiating a settlement to end their litigation about whether the CBS board has the right to vastly dilute the voting power of NAI. While it is possible the settlement with Moonves and between CBS and NAI could be announced simultaneously, sources tell me they are not linked.
CBS officials declined comment. The shares declined 2.5 percent in premarket trading Thursday.
VIDEO - The final Trump-Clinton debate transcript, annotated - The Washington Post
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 12:39
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump sparred on the debate stage for the final time on Oct. 19 in Las Vegas. (The Washington Post)
The final debate of the 2016 presidential race came as Hillary Clinton threatened to shut the door on Donald Trump and as Donald Trump threatened to unleash a torrent of attacks and accusations about the "rigged" election process.
As the two met in Las Vegas on Wednesday night, we posted the transcript below, along with our analysis, fact checks and comments via annotation. To see an annotation, click on the highlighted text. To make your own, sign up for a Genius account.
WALLACE: Good evening from the Thomas and Mack Center at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. I'm Chris Wallace of Fox News, and I welcome you to the third and final of the 2016 presidential debates between Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Donald J. Trump.
WALLACE: This debate is sponsored by the Commission on Presidential Debates. The commission has designed the format: Six roughly 15-minute segments with two-minute answers to the first question, then open discussion for the rest of each segment. Both campaigns have agreed to those rules.
For the record, I decided the topics and the questions in each topic. None of those questions has been shared with the commission or the two candidates. The audience here in the hall has promised to remain silent. No cheers, boos, or other interruptions so we and you can focus on what the candidates have to say.
WALLACE: No noise, except right now, as we welcome the Democratic nominee for president, Secretary Clinton, and the Republican nominee for president, Mr. Trump.
(APPLAUSE)
Secretary Clinton, Mr. Trump, welcome. Let's get right to it. The first topic is the Supreme Court.
You both talked briefly about the court in the last debate, but I want to drill down on this, because the next president will almost certainly have at least one appointment and likely or possibly two or three appointments.
WALLACE: Which means that you will, in effect, determine the balance of the court for what could be the next quarter century.
First of all, where do you want to see the court take the country? And secondly, what's your view on how the Constitution should be interpreted? Do the founders' words mean what they say or is it a living document to be applied flexibly according to changing circumstances? In this segment, Secretary Clinton, you go first. You have two minutes.
CLINTON: Thank you very much, Chris. And thanks to UNLV for hosting us.
You know, I think when we talk about the Supreme Court, it really raises the central issue in this election, namely, what kind of country are we going to be? What kind of opportunities will we provide for our citizens? What kind of rights will Americans have?
And I feel strongly that the Supreme Court needs to stand on the side of the American people, not on the side of the powerful corporations and the wealthy. For me, that means that we need a Supreme Court that will stand up on behalf of women's rights, on behalf of the rights of the LGBT community, that will stand up and say no to Citizens United, a decision that has undermined the election system in our country because of the way it permits dark, unaccountable money to come into our electoral system.
I have major disagreements with my opponent about these issues and others that will be before the Supreme Court. But I feel that at this point in our country's history, it is important that we not reverse marriage equality, that we not reverse Roe v. Wade, that we stand up against Citizens United, we stand up for the rights of people in the workplace, that we stand up and basically say: The Supreme Court should represent all of us.
That's how I see the court, and the kind of people that I would be looking to nominate to the court would be in the great tradition of standing up to the powerful, standing up on behalf of our rights as Americans.
And I look forward to having that opportunity. I would hope that the Senate would do its job and confirm the nominee that President Obama has sent to them. That's the way the Constitution fundamentally should operate. The president nominates, and then the Senate advises and consents, or not, but they go forward with the process.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, thank you.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, same question. Where do you want to see the court take the country? And how do you believe the Constitution should be interpreted?
TRUMP: Well, first of all, it's great to be with you, and thank you, everybody. The Supreme Court: It's what it's all about. Our country is so, so -- it's just so imperative that we have the right justices.
Something happened recently where Justice Ginsburg made some very, very inappropriate statements toward me and toward a tremendous number of people, many, many millions of people that I represent. And she was forced to apologize. And apologize she did. But these were statements that should never, ever have been made.
We need a Supreme Court that in my opinion is going to uphold the Second Amendment, and all amendments, but the Second Amendment, which is under absolute siege. I believe if my opponent should win this race, which I truly don't think will happen, we will have a Second Amendment which will be a very, very small replica of what it is right now. But I feel that it's absolutely important that we uphold, because of the fact that it is under such trauma.
I feel that the justices that I am going to appoint -- and I've named 20 of them -- the justices that I'm going to appoint will be pro-life. They will have a conservative bent. They will be protecting the Second Amendment. They are great scholars in all cases, and they're people of tremendous respect. They will interpret the Constitution the way the founders wanted it interpreted. And I believe that's very, very important.
I don't think we should have justices appointed that decide what they want to hear. It's all about the Constitution of -- of -- and so important, the Constitution the way it was meant to be. And those are the people that I will appoint.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, thank you.
WALLACE: We now have about 10 minutes for an open discussion. I want to focus on two issues that, in fact, by the justices that you name could end up changing the existing law of the land. First is one that you mentioned, Mr. Trump, and that is guns.
Secretary Clinton, you said last year, let me quote, "The Supreme Court is wrong on the Second Amendment." And now, in fact, in the 2008 Heller case, the court ruled that there is a constitutional right to bear arms, but a right that is reasonably limited. Those were the words of the Judge Antonin Scalia who wrote the decision. What's wrong with that?
CLINTON: Well, first of all, I support the Second Amendment. I lived in Arkansas for 18 wonderful years. I represented upstate New York. I understand and respect the tradition of gun ownership. It goes back to the founding of our country.
But I also believe that there can be and must be reasonable regulation. Because I support the Second Amendment doesn't mean that I want people who shouldn't have guns to be able to threaten you, kill you or members of your family.
And so when I think about what we need to do, we have 33,000 people a year who die from guns. I think we need comprehensive background checks, need to close the online loophole, close the gun show loophole. There's other matters that I think are sensible that are the kind of reforms that would make a difference that are not in any way conflicting with the Second Amendment.
You mentioned the Heller decision. And what I was saying that you referenced, Chris, was that I disagreed with the way the court applied the Second Amendment in that case, because what the District of Columbia was trying to do was to protect toddlers from guns and so they wanted people with guns to safely store them. And the court didn't accept that reasonable regulation, but they've accepted many others. So I see no conflict between saving people's lives and defending the Second Amendment.
WALLACE: Let me bring Mr. Trump in here. The bipartisan Open Debate Coalition got millions of votes on questions to ask here, and this was, in fact, one of the top questions that they got. How will you ensure the Second Amendment is protected? You just heard Secretary Clinton's answer. Does she persuade you that, while you may disagree on regulation, that, in fact, she supports a Second Amendment right to bear arms? TRUMP: Well, the D.C. vs. Heller decision was very strongly -- and she was extremely angry about it. I watched. I mean, she was very, very angry when upheld. And Justice Scalia was so involved. And it was a well-crafted decision. But Hillary was extremely upset, extremely angry. And people that believe in the Second Amendment and believe in it very strongly were very upset with what she had to say.
WALLACE: Well, let me bring in Secretary Clinton. Were you extremely upset?
CLINTON: Well, I was upset because, unfortunately, dozens of toddlers injure themselves, even kill people with guns, because, unfortunately, not everyone who has loaded guns in their homes takes appropriate precautions.
But there's no doubt that I respect the Second Amendment, that I also believe there's an individual right to bear arms. That is not in conflict with sensible, commonsense regulation.
And, you know, look, I understand that Donald's been strongly supported by the NRA. The gun lobby's on his side. They're running millions of dollars of ads against me. And I regret that, because what I would like to see is for people to come together and say: Of course we're going to protect and defend the Second Amendment. But we're going to do it in a way that tries to save some of these 33,000 lives that we lose every year.
WALLACE: Let me bring Mr. Trump back into this, because, in fact, you oppose any limits on assault weapons, any limits on high- capacity magazines. You support a national right to carry law. Why, sir?
TRUMP: Well, let me just tell you before we go any further. In Chicago, which has the toughest gun laws in the United States, probably you could say by far, they have more gun violence than any other city. So we have the toughest laws, and you have tremendous gun violence.
I am a very strong supporter of the Second Amendment. And I am -- I don't know if Hillary was saying it in a sarcastic manner, but I'm very proud to have the endorsement of the NRA. And it's the earliest endorsement they've ever given to anybody who ran for president. So I'm very honored by all of that.
We are going to appoint justices -- this is the best way to help the Second Amendment. We are going to appoint justices that will feel very strongly about the Second Amendment, that will not do damage to the Second Amendment.
WALLACE: Well, let's pick up on another issue which divides you and the justices that whoever ends up winning this election appoints could have a dramatic effect there, and that's the issue of abortion.
TRUMP: Right.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, you're pro-life. But I want to ask you specifically: Do you want the court, including the justices that you will name, to overturn Roe v. Wade, which includes -- in fact, states -- a woman's right to abortion?
TRUMP: Well, if that would happen, because I am pro-life, and I will be appointing pro-life judges, I would think that that will go back to the individual states.
WALLACE: But I'm asking you specifically. Would you like to...
TRUMP: If they overturned it, it will go back to the states.
WALLACE: But what I'm asking you, sir, is, do you want to see the court overturn -- you just said you want to see the court protect the Second Amendment. Do you want to see the court overturn Roe v. Wade?
TRUMP: Well, if we put another two or perhaps three justice on, that's really what's going to be -- that will happen. And that'll happen automatically, in my opinion, because I am putting pro-life justices on the court. I will say this: It will go back to the states, and the states will then make a determination.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton?
CLINTON: Well, I strongly support Roe v. Wade, which guarantees a constitutional right to a woman to make the most intimate, most difficult, in many cases, decisions about her health care that one can imagine. And in this case, it's not only about Roe v. Wade. It is about what's happening right now in America.
So many states are putting very stringent regulations on women that block them from exercising that choice to the extent that they are defunding Planned Parenthood, which, of course, provides all kinds of cancer screenings and other benefits for women in our country.
Donald has said he's in favor of defunding Planned Parenthood. He even supported shutting the government down to defund Planned Parenthood. I will defend Planned Parenthood. I will defend Roe v. Wade, and I will defend women's rights to make their own health care decisions.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton... CLINTON: And we have come too far to have that turned back now. And, indeed, he said women should be punished, that there should be some form of punishment for women who obtain abortions. And I could just not be more opposed to that kind of thinking.
WALLACE: I'm going to give you a chance to respond, but I want to ask you, Secretary Clinton, I want to explore how far you believe the right to abortion goes. You have been quoted as saying that the fetus has no constitutional rights. You also voted against a ban on late-term, partial-birth abortions. Why?
CLINTON: Because Roe v. Wade very clearly sets out that there can be regulations on abortion so long as the life and the health of the mother are taken into account. And when I voted as a senator, I did not think that that was the case.
The kinds of cases that fall at the end of pregnancy are often the most heartbreaking, painful decisions for families to make. I have met with women who toward the end of their pregnancy get the worst news one could get, that their health is in jeopardy if they continue to carry to term or that something terrible has happened or just been discovered about the pregnancy. I do not think the United States government should be stepping in and making those most personal of decisions. So you can regulate if you are doing so with the life and the health of the mother taken into account.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, your reaction? And particularly on this issue of late-term, partial-birth abortions.
TRUMP: Well, I think it's terrible. If you go with what Hillary is saying, in the ninth month, you can take the baby and rip the baby out of the womb of the mother just prior to the birth of the baby.
Now, you can say that that's OK and Hillary can say that that's OK. But it's not OK with me, because based on what she's saying, and based on where she's going, and where she's been, you can take the baby and rip the baby out of the womb in the ninth month on the final day. And that's not acceptable.
CLINTON: Well, that is not what happens in these cases. And using that kind of scare rhetoric is just terribly unfortunate. You should meet with some of the women that I have met with, women I have known over the course of my life. This is one of the worst possible choices that any woman and her family has to make. And I do not believe the government should be making it.
You know, I've had the great honor of traveling across the world on behalf of our country. I've been to countries where governments either forced women to have abortions, like they used to do in China, or forced women to bear children, like they used to do in Romania. And I can tell you: The government has no business in the decisions that women make with their families in accordance with their faith, with medical advice. And I will stand up for that right.
WALLACE: All right. But just briefly, I want to move on to another segment...
TRUMP: And, honestly, nobody has business doing what I just said, doing that, as late as one or two or three or four days prior to birth. Nobody has that.
WALLACE: All right. Let's move on to the subject of immigration. And there is almost no issue that separates the two of you more than the issue of immigration. Actually, there are a lot of issues that separate the two of you.
Mr. Trump, you want to build a wall. Secretary Clinton, you have offered no specific plan for how you want to secure our southern border. Mr. Trump, you are calling for major deportations. Secretary Clinton, you say that within your first 100 days as president you're going to offer a package that includes a pathway to citizenship. The question, really, is, why are you right and your opponent wrong?
Mr. Trump, you go first in this segment. You have two minutes.
TRUMP: Well, first of all, she wants to give amnesty, which is a disaster and very unfair to all of the people that are waiting on line for many, many years. We need strong borders.
In the audience tonight, we have four mothers of -- I mean, these are unbelievable people that I've gotten to know over a period of years whose children have been killed, brutally killed by people that came into the country illegally. You have thousands of mothers and fathers and relatives all over the country. They're coming in illegally. Drugs are pouring in through the border. We have no country if we have no border.
Hillary wants to give amnesty. She wants to have open borders. The border -- as you know, the Border Patrol agents, 16,500-plus ICE last week, endorsed me. First time they've ever endorsed a candidate. It means their job is tougher. But they know what's going on. They know it better than anybody. They want strong borders. They feel we have to have strong borders.
I was up in New Hampshire the other day. The biggest complaint they have -- it's with all of the problems going on in the world, many of the problems caused by Hillary Clinton and by Barack Obama. All of the problems -- the single biggest problem is heroin that pours across our southern border. It's just pouring and destroying their youth. It's poisoning the blood of their youth and plenty of other people. We have to have strong borders. We have to keep the drugs out of our country. We are -- right now, we're getting the drugs, they're getting the cash. We need strong borders. We need absolute -- we cannot give amnesty.
Now, I want to build the wall. We need the wall. And the Border Patrol, ICE, they all want the wall. We stop the drugs. We shore up the border. One of my first acts will be to get all of the drug lords, all of the bad ones -- we have some bad, bad people in this country that have to go out. We're going to get them out; we're going to secure the border. And once the border is secured, at a later date, we'll make a determination as to the rest. But we have some bad hombres here, and we're going to get them out.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, thank you. Same question to you, Secretary Clinton. Basically, why are you right and Mr. Trump is wrong?
CLINTON: Well, as he was talking, I was thinking about a young girl I met here in Las Vegas, Carla, who is very worried that her parents might be deported, because she was born in this country but they were not. They work hard, they do everything they can to give her a good life.
And you're right. I don't want to rip families apart. I don't want to be sending parents away from children. I don't want to see the deportation force that Donald has talked about in action in our country.
We have 11 million undocumented people. They have 4 million American citizen children, 15 million people. He said as recently as a few weeks ago in Phoenix that every undocumented person would be subject to deportation. Now, here's what that means. It means you would have to have a massive law enforcement presence, where law enforcement officers would be going school to school, home to home, business to business, rounding up people who are undocumented. And we would then have to put them on trains, on buses to get them out of our country.
I think that is an idea that is not in keeping with who we are as a nation. I think it's an idea that would rip our country apart.
I have been for border security for years. I voted for border security in the United States Senate. And my comprehensive immigration reform plan of course includes border security. But I want to put our resources where I think they're most needed: Getting rid of any violent person. Anybody who should be deported, we should deport them.
When it comes to the wall that Donald talks about building, he went to Mexico, he had a meeting with the Mexican president. Didn't even raise it. He choked and then got into a Twitter war because the Mexican president said we're not paying for that wall.
So I think we are both a nation of immigrants and we are a nation of laws and that we can act accordingly. And that's why I'm introducing comprehensive immigration reform within the first 100 days with the path to citizenship.
WALLACE: Thank you, Secretary Clinton. I want to follow up...
TRUMP: Chris, I think it's...
WALLACE: OK.
TRUMP: I think I should respond to that. First of all, I had a very good meeting with the president of Mexico. Very nice man. We will be doing very much better with Mexico on trade deals. Believe me. The NAFTA deal signed by her husband is one of the worst deals ever made of any kind, signed by anybody. It's a disaster.
Hillary Clinton wanted the wall. Hillary Clinton fought for the wall in 2006 or thereabouts. Now, she never gets anything done, so naturally the wall wasn't built. But Hillary Clinton wanted the wall.
WALLACE: Well, let me -- wait, wait, sir, let me...
TRUMP: We are a country of laws. We either have -- and by the way...
WALLACE: Now, wait. I'd like to hear from...
TRUMP: Well -- well, but she said one thing.
WALLACE: I'd like to hear -- I'd like to hear from Secretary Clinton.
CLINTON: I voted for border security, and there are...
TRUMP: And the wall.
CLINTON: There are some limited places where that was appropriate. There also is necessarily going to be new technology and how best to deploy that.
But it is clear, when you look at what Donald has been proposing, he started his campaign bashing immigrants, calling Mexican immigrants rapists and criminals and drug dealers, that he has a very different view about what we should do to deal with immigrants.
Now, what I am also arguing is that bringing undocumented immigrants out from the shadows, putting them into the formal economy will be good, because then employers can't exploit them and undercut Americans' wages.
And Donald knows a lot about this. He used undocumented labor to build the Trump Tower. He underpaid undocumented workers, and when they complained, he basically said what a lot of employers do: "You complain, I'll get you deported."
I want to get everybody out of the shadows, get the economy working, and not let employers like Donald exploit undocumented workers, which hurts them, but also hurts American workers.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump?
TRUMP: President Obama has moved millions of people out. Nobody knows about it, nobody talks about it. But under Obama, millions of people have been moved out of this country. They've been deported. She doesn't want to say that, but that's what's happened, and that's what happened big league.
As far as moving these people out and moving -- we either have a country or we don't. We're a country of laws. We either have a border or we don't.
Now, you can come back in and you can become a citizen. But it's very unfair. We have millions of people that did it the right way. They're on line. They're waiting. We're going to speed up the process, big league, because it's very inefficient. But they're on line and they're waiting to become citizens.
Very unfair that somebody runs across the border, becomes a citizen, under her plan, you have open borders. You would have a disaster on trade, and you will have a disaster with your open borders.
WALLACE: I want to...
TRUMP: But what she doesn't say is that President Obama has deported millions and millions of people just the way it is.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, I want to...
CLINTON: We will not have open borders. That is...
WALLACE: Well, let me -- Secretary...
CLINTON: That is a rank mischaracterization.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton...
CLINTON: We will have secure borders, but we'll also have reform. And this used to be a bipartisan issue. Ronald Reagan was the last president...
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, excuse me. Secretary Clinton.
CLINTON: ... to sign immigration reform, and George W. Bush supported it, as well.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, I want to clear up your position on this issue, because in a speech you gave to a Brazilian bank, for which you were paid $225,000, we've learned from the WikiLeaks, that you said this, and I want to quote. "My dream is a hemispheric common market with open trade and open borders." So that's the question...
TRUMP: Thank you.
WALLACE: That's the question. Please quiet, everybody. Is that your dream, open borders? CLINTON: Well, if you went on to read the rest of the sentence, I was talking about energy. You know, we trade more energy with our neighbors than we trade with the rest of the world combined. And I do want us to have an electric grid, an energy system that crosses borders. I think that would be a great benefit to us.
But you are very clearly quoting from WikiLeaks. And what's really important about WikiLeaks is that the Russian government has engaged in espionage against Americans. They have hacked American websites, American accounts of private people, of institutions. Then they have given that information to WikiLeaks for the purpose of putting it on the Internet.
This has come from the highest levels of the Russian government, clearly, from Putin himself, in an effort, as 17 of our intelligence agencies have confirmed, to influence our election.
CLINTON: So I actually think the most important question of this evening, Chris, is, finally, will Donald Trump admit and condemn that the Russians are doing this and make it clear that he will not have the help of Putin in in this election, that he rejects Russian espionage against Americans, which he actually encouraged in the past? Those are the questions we need answered. We've never had anything like this happen in any of our elections before.
WALLACE: Well?
TRUMP: That was a great pivot off the fact that she wants open borders, OK? How did we get on to Putin?
WALLACE: Hold on -- hold on, wait. Hold on, folks. Because we -- this is going to end up getting out of control. Let's try to keep it quiet so -- for the candidates and for the American people.
TRUMP: So just to finish on the borders...
WALLACE: Yes?
TRUMP: She wants open borders. People are going to pour into our country. People are going to come in from Syria. She wants 550 percent more people than Barack Obama, and he has thousands and thousands of people. They have no idea where they come from.
And you see, we are going to stop radical Islamic terrorism in this country. She won't even mention the words, and neither will President Obama. So I just want to tell you, she wants open borders.
Now we can talk about Putin. I don't know Putin. He said nice things about me. If we got along well, that would be good. If Russia and the United States got along well and went after ISIS, that would be good.
He has no respect for her. He has no respect for our president. And I'll tell you what: We're in very serious trouble, because we have a country with tremendous numbers of nuclear warheads -- 1,800, by the way -- where they expanded and we didn't, 1,800 nuclear warheads. And she's playing chicken. Look, Putin...
WALLACE: Wait, but...
TRUMP: ... from everything I see, has no respect for this person.
CLINTON: Well, that's because he'd rather have a puppet as president of the United States.
TRUMP: No puppet. No puppet.
CLINTON: And it's pretty clear...
TRUMP: You're the puppet!
CLINTON: It's pretty clear you won't admit...
TRUMP: No, you're the puppet.
CLINTON: ... that the Russians have engaged in cyberattacks against the United States of America, that you encouraged espionage against our people, that you are willing to spout the Putin line, sign up for his wish list, break up NATO, do whatever he wants to do, and that you continue to get help from him, because he has a very clear favorite in this race.
So I think that this is such an unprecedented situation. We've never had a foreign government trying to interfere in our election. We have 17 -- 17 intelligence agencies, civilian and military, who have all concluded that these espionage attacks, these cyberattacks, come from the highest levels of the Kremlin and they are designed to influence our election. I find that deeply disturbing.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton...
CLINTON: And I think it's time you take a stand...
TRUMP: She has no idea whether it's Russia, China, or anybody else.
CLINTON: I am not quoting myself.
TRUMP: She has no idea.
CLINTON: I am quoting 17...
TRUMP: Hillary, you have no idea.
CLINTON: ... 17 intelligence -- do you doubt 17 military and civilian...
TRUMP: And our country has no idea.
CLINTON: ... agencies.
TRUMP: Yeah, I doubt it. I doubt it.
CLINTON: Well, he'd rather believe Vladimir Putin than the military and civilian intelligence professionals who are sworn to protect us. I find that just absolutely...
(CROSSTALK)
TRUMP: She doesn't like Putin because Putin has outsmarted her at every step of the way.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump...
TRUMP: Excuse me. Putin has outsmarted her in Syria.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump...
(CROSSTALK)
TRUMP: He's outsmarted her every step of the way.
WALLACE: I do get to ask some questions.
TRUMP: Yes, that's fine.
WALLACE: And I would like to ask you this direct question. The top national security officials of this country do believe that Russia has been behind these hacks. Even if you don't know for sure whether they are, do you condemn any interference by Russia in the American election?
TRUMP: By Russia or anybody else.
WALLACE: You condemn their interference?
TRUMP: Of course I condemn. Of course I -- I don't know Putin. I have no idea.
WALLACE: I'm not asking -- I'm asking do you condemn?
TRUMP: I never met Putin. This is not my best friend. But if the United States got along with Russia, wouldn't be so bad.
Let me tell you, Putin has outsmarted her and Obama at every single step of the way. Whether it's Syria, you name it. Missiles. Take a look at the "start up" that they signed. The Russians have said, according to many, many reports, I can't believe they allowed us to do this. They create warheads, and we can't. The Russians can't believe it. She has been outsmarted by Putin.
And all you have to do is look at the Middle East. They've taken over. We've spent $6 trillion. They've taken over the Middle East. She has been outsmarted and outplayed worse than anybody I've ever seen in any government whatsoever.
WALLACE: We're a long way away from immigration, but I'm going to let you finish this topic. You got about 45 seconds.
TRUMP: And she always will be.
CLINTON: I -- I find it ironic that he's raising nuclear weapons. This is a person who has been very cavalier, even casual about the use of nuclear weapons. He's...
TRUMP: Wrong. CLINTON: ... advocated more countries getting them, Japan, Korea, even Saudi Arabia. He said, well, if we have them, why don't we use them, which I think is terrifying.
But here's the deal. The bottom line on nuclear weapons is that when the president gives the order, it must be followed. There's about four minutes between the order being given and the people responsible for launching nuclear weapons to do so. And that's why 10 people who have had that awesome responsibility have come out and, in an unprecedented way, said they would not trust Donald Trump with the nuclear codes or to have his finger on the nuclear button.
TRUMP: I have 200 generals...
WALLACE: Very quickly.
TRUMP: ... and admirals, 21 endorsing me, 21 congressional Medal of Honor recipients. As far as Japan and other countries, we are being ripped off by everybody in the -- we're defending other countries. We are spending a fortune doing it. They have the bargain of the century.
All I said is, we have to renegotiate these agreements, because our country cannot afford to defend Saudi Arabia, Japan, Germany, South Korea, and many other places. We cannot continue to afford -- she took that as saying nuclear weapons.
WALLACE: OK.
TRUMP: Look, she's been proven to be a liar on so many different ways. This is just another lie.
CLINTON: Well, I'm just quoting you when you were asked...
TRUMP: There's no quote. You're not going to find a quote from me.
CLINTON: ... about a potential nuclear -- nuclear competition in Asia, you said, you know, go ahead, enjoy yourselves, folks. That kind...
TRUMP: And defend yourselves.
CLINTON: ... of language -- well...
TRUMP: And defend yourselves. I didn't say nuclear. And defend yourself.
CLINTON: The United States has kept the peace -- the United States has kept the peace through our alliances. Donald wants to tear up our alliances. I think it makes the world safer and, frankly, it makes the United States safer. I would work with our allies in Asia, in Europe, in the Middle East, and elsewhere. That's the only way we're going to be able to keep the peace.
WALLACE: We're going to -- no, we are going to move on to the next topic, which is the economy. And I hope we handle that as well as we did immigration. You also have very different ideas about how to get the economy growing faster. Secretary Clinton, in your plan, government plays a big role. You see more government spending, more entitlements, more tax credits, more tax penalties. Mr. Trump, you want to get government out with lower taxes and less regulation.
TRUMP: Yes.
WALLACE: We're going to drill down into this a little bit more. But in this overview, please explain to me why you believe that your plan will create more jobs and growth for this country and your opponent's plan will not. In this round, you go first, Secretary Clinton.
CLINTON: Well, I think when the middle class thrives, America thrives. And so my plan is based on growing the economy, giving middle-class families many more opportunities. I want us to have the biggest jobs program since World War II, jobs in infrastructure and advanced manufacturing. I think we can compete with high-wage countries, and I believe we should. New jobs and clean energy, not only to fight climate change, which is a serious problem, but to create new opportunities and new businesses.
I want us to do more to help small business. That's where two- thirds of the new jobs are going to come from. I want us to raise the national minimum wage, because people who live in poverty should not -- who work full-time should not still be in poverty. And I sure do want to make sure women get equal pay for the work we do.
I feel strongly that we have to have an education system that starts with preschool and goes through college. That's why I want more technical education in high schools and in community colleges, real apprenticeships to prepare young people for the jobs of the future. I want to make college debt-free and for families making less than $125,000, you will not get a tuition bill from a public college or university if the plan that I worked on with Bernie Sanders is enacted.
And we're going to work hard to make sure that it is, because we are going to go where the money is. Most of the gains in the last years since the Great Recession have gone to the very top. So we are going to have the wealthy pay their fair share. We're going to have corporations make a contribution greater than they are now to our country.
That is a plan that has been analyzed by independent experts which said that it could produce 10 million new jobs. By contrast, Donald's plan has been analyzed to conclude it might lose 3.5 million jobs. Why? Because his whole plan is to cut taxes, to give the biggest tax breaks ever to the wealthy and to corporations, adding $20 trillion to our debt, and causing the kind of dislocation that we have seen before, because it truly will be trickle-down economics on steroids.
So the plan I have I think will actually produce greater opportunities. The plan he has will cost us jobs and possibly lead to another Great Recession.
WALLACE: Secretary, thank you. Mr. Trump, why will your plan create more jobs and growth than Secretary Clinton's?
TRUMP: Well, first of all, before I start on my plan, her plan is going to raise taxes and even double your taxes. Her tax plan is a disaster. And she can say all she wants about college tuition. And I'm a big proponent. We're going to do a lot of things for college tuition. But the rest of the public's going to be paying for it. We will have a massive, massive tax increase under Hillary Clinton's plan.
TRUMP: But I'd like to start off where we left, because when I said Japan and Germany, and I'm -- not to single them out, but South Korea, these are very rich, powerful countries. Saudi Arabia, nothing but money. We protect Saudi Arabia. Why aren't they paying?
She immediately -- when she heard this, I questioned it, and I questioned NATO. Why aren't the NATO questioned -- why aren't they paying? Because they weren't paying.
Since I did this -- this was a year ago -- all of a sudden, they're paying. And I've been given a lot -- a lot of credit for it. All of a sudden, they're starting to pay up. They have to pay up. We're protecting people, they have to pay up. And I'm a big fan of NATO. But they have to pay up.
She comes out and said, we love our allies, we think our allies are great. Well, it's awfully hard to get them to pay up when you have somebody saying we think how great they are.
We have to tell Japan in a very nice way, we have to tell Germany, all of these countries, South Korea, we have to say, you have to help us out. We have, during his regime, during President Obama's regime, we've doubled our national debt. We're up to $20 trillion.
So my plan -- we're going to renegotiate trade deals. We're going to have a lot of free trade. We're going to have free trade, more free trade than we have right now. But we have horrible deals. Our jobs are being taken out by the deal that her husband signed, NAFTA, one of the worst deals ever. Our jobs are being sucked out of our economy.
You look at all of the places that I just left, you go to Pennsylvania, you go to Ohio, you go to Florida, you go to any of them. You go upstate New York. Our jobs have fled to Mexico and other places. We're bringing our jobs back.
I am going to renegotiate NAFTA. And if I can't make a great deal -- then we're going to terminate NAFTA and we're going to create new deals. We're going to have trade, but we're going -- we're going to terminate it, we're going to make a great trade deal.
And if we can't, we're going to do it -- we're going to go a separate way, because it has been a disaster. We are going to cut taxes massively. We're going to cut business taxes massively. They're going to start hiring people. We're going to bring the $2.5 trillion...
WALLACE: Time, Mr. Trump.
TRUMP: ... that's offshore back into the country. We are going to start the engine rolling again, because...
WALLACE: Mr. Trump?
TRUMP: ... right now, our country is dying at 1 percent GDP.
CLINTON: Well, let me translate that, if I can, Chris, because...
TRUMP: You can't.
CLINTON: ... the fact is, he's going to advocate for the largest tax cuts we've ever seen, three times more than the tax cuts under the Bush administration. I have said repeatedly throughout this campaign: I will not raise taxes on anyone making $250,000 or less.
I also will not add a penny to the debt. I have costed out what I'm going to do. He will, through his massive tax cuts, add $20 trillion to the debt.
Well, he mentioned the debt. We know how to get control of the debt. When my husband was president, we went from a $300 billion deficit to a $200 billion surplus and we were actually on the path to eliminating the national debt. When President Obama came into office, he inherited the worst economic disaster since the Great Depression. He has cut the deficit by two-thirds.
So, yes, one of the ways you go after the debt, one of the ways you create jobs is by investing in people. So I do have investments, investments in new jobs, investments in education, skill training, and the opportunities for people to get ahead and stay ahead. That's the kind of approach that will work.
WALLACE: Secretary...
CLINTON: Cutting taxes on the wealthy, we've tried that. It has not worked the way that it has been promised.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, I want to pursue your plan, because in many ways it is similar to the Obama stimulus plan in 2009, which has led to the slowest GDP growth since 1949.
TRUMP: Correct.
WALLACE: Thank you, sir.
You told me in July when we spoke that the problem is that President Obama didn't get to do enough in what he was trying to do with his stimulus. So is your plan basically more -- even more of the Obama stimulus?
CLINTON: Well, it's a combination, Chris. And let me say that when you inherit the level of economic catastrophe that President Obama inherited, it was a real touch-and-go situation. I was in the Senate before I became secretary of state. I've never seen people as physically distraught as the Bush administration team was because of what was happening to the economy.
I personally believe that the steps that President Obama took saved the economy. He doesn't get the credit he deserves for taking some very hard positions. But it was a terrible recession.
So now we've dug ourselves out of it, we're standing, but we're not yet running. So what I am proposing is that we invest from the middle out and the ground up, not the top down. That is not going to work.
That's why what I have put forward doesn't add a penny to the debt, but it is the kind of approach that will enable more people to take those new jobs, higher-paying jobs. We're beginning to see some increase in incomes, and we certainly have had a long string of increasing jobs. We've got to do more to get the whole economy moving, and that's what I believe I will be able to do.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, even conservative economists who have looked at your plan say that the numbers don't add up, that your idea, and you've talked about 25 million jobs created, 4 percent...
TRUMP: Over a 10-year period.
WALLACE: ... growth is unrealistic. And they say -- you talk a lot about growing the energy industry. They say with oil prices as low as they are right now, that's unrealistic, as well. Your response, sir?
TRUMP: So I just left some high representatives of India. They're growing at 8 percent. China is growing at 7 percent. And that for them is a catastrophically low number.
We are growing -- our last report came out -- and it's right around the 1 percent level. And I think it's going down. Last week, as you know, the end of last week, they came out with an anemic jobs report. A terrible jobs report. In fact I said, is that the last jobs report before the election? Because if it is, I should win easily, it was so bad. The report was so bad.
Look, our country is stagnant. We've lost our jobs. We've lost our businesses. We're not making things anymore, relatively speaking. Our product is pouring in from China, pouring in from Vietnam, pouring in from all over the world.
I've visited so many communities. This has been such an incredible education for me, Chris. I've gotten to know so many -- I've developed so many friends over the last year. And they cry when they see what's happened. I pass factories that were thriving 20, 25 years ago, and because of the bill that her husband signed and she blessed 100 percent, it is just horrible what's happened to these people in these communities.
Now, she can say that her husband did well, but, boy, did they suffer as NAFTA kicked in, because it didn't really kick in very much, but it kicked in after they left. Boy, did they suffer. That was one of the worst things that's ever been signed by our country.
Now she wants to sign Trans-Pacific Partnership. And she wants it. She lied when she said she didn't call it the gold standard in one of the debates. She totally lied. She did call it the gold standard. And they actually fact checked, and they said I was right. I was so honored.
WALLACE: I want you to give you a chance to briefly speak to that, and then I want to pivot to one-sixth of the economy...
TRUMP: And that will be as bad as NAFTA.
WALLACE: ... which is Obamacare. But go ahead, briefly.
CLINTON: Well, first, let me say, number one, when I saw the final agreement for TPP, I said I was against it. It didn't meet my test. I've had the same test. Does it create jobs, raise incomes, and further our national security? I'm against it now. I'll be against it after the election. I'll be against it when I'm president.
There's only one of us on this stage who's actually shipped jobs to Mexico, because that's Donald. He's shipped jobs to 12 countries, including Mexico.
But he mentioned China. And, you know, one of the biggest problems we have with China is the illegal dumping of steel and aluminum into our markets. I have fought against that as a senator. I've stood up against it as secretary of state.
Donald has bought Chinese steel and aluminum. In fact, the Trump Hotel right here in Las Vegas was made with Chinese steel. So he goes around with crocodile tears about how terrible it is, but he has given jobs to Chinese steelworkers, not American steelworkers.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump?
CLINTON: That's the kind of approach that is just not going to work.
TRUMP: Well, let me just say -- let me just say.
CLINTON: We're going to pull the country together. We're going to have trade agreements that we enforce. That's why I'm going to have a trade prosecutor for the first time in history. And we're going to enforce those agreements, and we're going to look for businesses to help us by buying American products.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton? Go ahead, Mr. Trump.
TRUMP: Let me ask a simple question. She's been doing this for 30 years. Why the hell didn't you do it over the last 15, 20 years?
CLINTON: No, I voted.
TRUMP: You were very much involved -- excuse me. My turn. You were very much involved in every aspect of this country. Very much. And you do have experience. I say the one thing you have over me is experience, but it's bad experience, because what you've done has turned out badly.
For 30 years, you've been in a position to help, and if you say that I use steel or I use something else, I -- make it impossible for me to do that. I wouldn't mind.
The problem is, you talk, but you don't get anything done, Hillary. You don't. Just like when you ran the State Department, $6 billion was missing. How do you miss $6 billion? You ran the State Department, $6 billion was either stolen. They don't know. It's gone, $6 billion. If you become president, this country is going to be in some mess. Believe me.
CLINTON: Well, first of all, what he just said about the State Department is not only untrue, it's been debunked numerous times.
CLINTON: But I think it's really an important issue. He raised the 30 years of experience, so let me just talk briefly about that. You know, back in the 1970s, I worked for the Children's Defense Fund. And I was taking on discrimination against African-American kids in schools. He was getting sued by the Justice Department for racial discrimination in his apartment buildings.
In the 1980s, I was working to reform the schools in Arkansas. He was borrowing $14 million from his father to start his businesses. In the 1990s, I went to Beijing and I said women's rights are human rights. He insulted a former Miss Universe, Alicia Machado, called her an eating machine.
TRUMP: Give me a break.
CLINTON: And on the day when I was in the Situation Room, monitoring the raid that brought Osama bin Laden to justice, he was hosting the "Celebrity Apprentice." So I'm happy to compare my 30 years of experience, what I've done for this country, trying to help in every way I could, especially kids and families get ahead and stay ahead, with your 30 years, and I'll let the American people make that decision.
TRUMP: Well, I think I did a much better job. I built a massive company, a great company, some of the greatest assets anywhere in the world, worth many, many billions of dollars. I started with a $1 million loan. I agree with that. It's a $1 million loan. But I built a phenomenal company.
And if we could run our country the way I've run my company, we would have a country that you would be so proud of. You would even be proud of it.
And frankly, when you look at her real record, take a look at Syria. Take a look at the migration. Take a look at Libya. Take a look at Iraq. She gave us ISIS, because her and Obama created this huge vacuum, and a small group came out of that huge vacuum because when -- we should never have been in Iraq, but once we were there, we should have never got out the way they wanted to get out. She gave us ISIS as sure as you are sitting there. And what happened is now ISIS is in 32 countries. And now I listen how she's going to get rid of ISIS. She's going to get rid of nobody.
WALLACE: All right. We are going to get to foreign hot spots in a few moments, but the next segment is fitness to be president of the United States. Mr. Trump, at the last debate, you said your talk about grabbing women was just that, talk, and that you'd never actually done it. And since then, as we all know, nine women have come forward and have said that you either groped them or kissed them without their consent.
Why would so many different women from so many different circumstances over so many different years, why would they all in this last couple of weeks make up -- you deny this -- why would they all make up these stories?
Since this is a question for both of you, Secretary Clinton, Mr. Trump says what your husband did and that you defended was even worse. Mr. Trump, you go first.
TRUMP: Well, first of all, those stories have been largely debunked. Those people -- I don't know those people. I have a feeling how they came. I believe it was her campaign that did it.
Just like if you look at what came out today on the clips where I was wondering what happened with my rally in Chicago and other rallies where we had such violence? She's the one and Obama that caused the violence. They hired people -- they paid them $1,500, and they're on tape saying be violent, cause fights, do bad things.
I would say the only way -- because those stories are all totally false, I have to say that. And I didn't even apologize to my wife, who's sitting right here, because I didn't do anything. I didn't know any of these -- I didn't see these women.
These women -- the woman on the plane, the -- I think they want either fame or her campaign did it. And I think it's her campaign. Because what I saw what they did, which is a criminal act, by the way, where they're telling people to go out and start fist-fights and start violence.
And I'll tell you what, in particular in Chicago, people were hurt and people could have been killed in that riot. And that was now all on tape, started by her. I believe, Chris, that she got these people to step forward. If it wasn't, they get their 10 minutes of fame. But they were all totally -- it was all fiction. It was lies, and it was fiction.
CLINTON: Well...
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton?
CLINTON: At the last debate, we heard Donald talking about what he did to women. And after that, a number of women have come forward saying that's exactly what he did to them. Now, what was his response? Well, he held a number of big rallies where he said that he could not possibly have done those things to those women because they were not attractive enough for them to be assaulted.
TRUMP: I did not say that. I did not say that.
CLINTON: In fact, he went on to say... WALLACE: Her two minutes -- sir, her two minutes. Her two minutes.
TRUMP: I did not say that.
WALLACE: It's her two minutes.
CLINTON: He went on to say, "Look at her. I don't think so." About another woman, he said, "That wouldn't be my first choice." He attacked the woman reporter writing the story, called her "disgusting," as he has called a number of women during this campaign.
Donald thinks belittling women makes him bigger. He goes after their dignity, their self-worth, and I don't think there is a woman anywhere who doesn't know what that feels like. So we now know what Donald thinks and what he says and how he acts toward women. That's who Donald is.
I think it's really up to all of us to demonstrate who we are and who our country is, and to stand up and be very clear about what we expect from our next president, how we want to bring our country together, where we don't want to have the kind of pitting of people one against the other, where instead we celebrate our diversity, we lift people up, and we make our country even greater.
America is great, because America is good. And it really is up to all of us to make that true, now and in the future, and particularly for our children and our grandchildren.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump...
TRUMP: Nobody has more respect for women than I do. Nobody.
(LAUGHTER)
Nobody has more respect...
WALLACE: Please, everybody.
TRUMP: And frankly, those stories have been largely debunked. And I really want to just talk about something slightly different.
She mentions this, which is all fiction, all fictionalized, probably or possibly started by her and her very sleazy campaign. But I will tell you what isn't fictionalized are her e-mails, where she destroyed 33,000 e-mails criminally, criminally, after getting a subpoena from the United States Congress.
What happened to the FBI, I don't know. We have a great general, four-star general, today you read it in all of the papers, going to potentially serve five years in jail for lying to the FBI. One lie. She's lied hundreds of times to the people, to Congress, and to the FBI. He's going to probably go to jail. This is a four-star general. And she gets away with it, and she can run for the presidency of the United States? That's really what you should be talking about, not fiction, where somebody wants fame or where they come out of her crooked campaign.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton?
CLINTON: Well, every time Donald is pushed on something which is obviously uncomfortable, like what these women are saying, he immediately goes to denying responsibility. And it's not just about women. He never apologizes or says he's sorry for anything.
So we know what he has said and what he's done to women. But he also went after a disabled reporter, mocked and mimicked him on national television.
TRUMP: Wrong.
CLINTON: He went after Mr. and Mrs. Khan, the parents of a young man who died serving our country, a Gold Star family, because of their religion. He went after John McCain, a prisoner of war, said he prefers "people who aren't captured." He went after a federal judge, born in Indiana, but who Donald said couldn't be trusted to try the fraud and racketeering case against Trump University because his parents were Mexican.
So it's not one thing. This is a pattern, a pattern of divisiveness, of a very dark and in many ways dangerous vision of our country, where he incites violence, where he applauds people who are pushing and pulling and punching at his rallies. That is not who America is.
And I hope that as we move in the last weeks of this campaign, more and more people will understand what's at stake in this election. It really does come down to what kind of country we are going to have.
TRUMP: So sad when she talks about violence at my rallies, and she caused the violence. It's on tape.
WALLACE: During the last...
TRUMP: The other things are false, but honestly, I'd love to talk about getting rid of ISIS, and I'd love to talk about other things...
WALLACE: OK.
TRUMP: ... but those other charges, as she knows, are false.
WALLACE: In this bucket about fitness to be president, there's been a lot of developments over the last 10 days since the last debate. I'd like to ask you about them. These are questions that the American people have.
Secretary Clinton, during your 2009 Senate confirmation hearing, you promised to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest with your dealing with the Clinton Foundation while you were secretary of state, but e-mails show that donors got special access to you. Those seeking grants for Haiti relief were considered separately from non-donors, and some of those donors got contracts, government contracts, taxpayer money.
Can you really say that you kept your pledge to that Senate committee? And why isn't what happened and what went on between you and the Clinton Foundation, why isn't it what Mr. Trump calls pay to play?
CLINTON: Well, everything I did as secretary of state was in furtherance of our country's interests and our values. The State Department has said that. I think that's been proven.
But I am happy, in fact I'm thrilled to talk about the Clinton Foundation, because it is a world-renowned charity and I am so proud of the work that it does. You know, I could talk for the rest of the debate -- I know I don't have the time to do that.
But just briefly, the Clinton Foundation made it possible for 11 million people around the world with HIV-AIDS to afford treatment, and that's about half all the people in the world who are getting treatment. In partnership with the American Health Association...
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton...
CLINTON: ... we have made environments in schools healthier for kids, including healthier lunches...
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, respectfully, this is -- this is an open discussion.
CLINTON: Well, it is an open discussion. And you...
WALLACE: And the specific question went to pay for play. Do you want to talk about that?
CLINTON: Well, but there is no -- but there is no evidence -- but there is...
(CROSSTALK)
TRUMP: I think that it's been very well...
WALLACE: Let's ask Mr. Trump.
CLINTON: There is a lot of evidence about the very good work...
TRUMP: It's been very well studied.
CLINTON: ... and the high rankings...
(CROSSTALK)
WALLACE: Please let me Mr. Trump speak.
TRUMP: ... and it's a criminal enterprise, and so many people know it.
WALLACE: Please let Mr. Trump speak.
(CROSSTALK)
TRUMP: It's a criminal enterprise. Saudi Arabia giving $25 million, Qatar, all of these countries. You talk about women and women's rights? So these are people that push gays off business -- off buildings. These are people that kill women and treat women horribly. And yet you take their money.
So I'd like to ask you right now, why don't you give back the money that you've taken from certain countries that treat certain groups of people so horribly? Why don't you give back the money? I think it would be a great gesture.
Because she takes a tremendous amount of money. And you take a look at the people of Haiti. I was at a little Haiti the other day in Florida. And I want to tell you, they hate the Clintons, because what's happened in Haiti with the Clinton Foundation is a disgrace. And you know it, and they know it, and everybody knows it.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton?
CLINTON: Well, very quickly, we at the Clinton Foundation spend 90 percent -- 90 percent of all the money that is donated on behalf of programs of people around the world and in our own country. I'm very proud of that. We have the highest rating from the watchdogs that follow foundations. And I'd be happy to compare what we do with the Trump Foundation, which took money from other people and bought a six- foot portrait of Donald. I mean, who does that? It just was astonishing.
But when it comes to Haiti, Haiti is the poorest country in our hemisphere. The earthquake and the hurricanes, it has devastated Haiti. Bill and I have been involved in trying to help Haiti for many years. The Clinton Foundation raised $30 million to help Haiti after the catastrophic earthquake and all of the terrible problems the people there had.
We have done things to help small businesses, agriculture, and so much else. And we're going to keep working to help Haiti...
WALLACE: All right.
CLINTON: ... because it's an important part of the American experience.
TRUMP: They don't want you to help them anymore.
(CROSSTALK)
TRUMP: I'd like to mention one thing. Trump Foundation, small foundation. People contribute, I contribute. The money goes 100 percent -- 100 percent goes to different charities, including a lot of military. I don't get anything. I don't buy boats. I don't buy planes. What happens -- the money goes to them.
WALLACE: Wasn't some of the money used to settle your lawsuits, sir?
TRUMP: No, it was -- we put up the American flag. And that's it. They put up the American flag. We fought for the right in Palm Beach to put up the American flag.
WALLACE: Right. But there was a penalty that was imposed by Palm Beach County, and the money came from your foundation...
TRUMP: There was. There was. And, by the way...
WALLACE: ... instead of Mar-a-Lago or yourself, sir.
TRUMP: ... the money -- the money went to Fisher House, where they build houses -- the money that you're talking about went to Fisher House, where they build houses for veterans and disabled vets.
WALLACE: I want to get into one...
CLINTON: But, of course, there's no way we can know whether any of that is true, because he hasn't released his tax returns. He is the first candidate ever to run for president in the last 40-plus years who has not released his tax returns, so everything he says about charity or anything else, we can't prove it. You can look at our tax returns. We've got them all out there.
But what is really troubling is that we learned in the last debate he has not paid a penny in federal income tax. And we were talking about immigrants a few minutes ago, Chris. You know, half of all immigrants -- undocumented immigrants in our country -- actually pay federal income tax. So we have undocumented immigrants in America who are paying more federal income tax than a billionaire. I find that just astonishing.
WALLACE: I want...
TRUMP: So let me just tell you very quickly, we're entitled because of the laws that people like her passed to take massive amounts of depreciation on other charges, and we do it. And all of her donors -- just about all of them -- I know Buffett took hundreds of millions of dollars, Soros, George Soros, took hundreds of millions of dollars...
WALLACE: We...
TRUMP: Let me just explain.
WALLACE: But, no, we heard this...
TRUMP: Most of her donors have done the same thing as I do.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, we -- OK.
TRUMP: You know what she should have done?
WALLACE: Folks, we heard this...
TRUMP: And you know, Hillary, what you should have done, you should have changed the law when you were a United States senator...
WALLACE: Folks, we heard this...
TRUMP: ... because your donors and your special interests are doing the same thing as I do, except even more so.
CLINTON: Well, you know...
TRUMP: You should have changed the law. But you won't change the law, because you take in so much money. I mean, I sat in my apartment today on a very beautiful hotel down the street known as Trump...
CLINTON: Made with Chinese steel.
TRUMP: But I will tell you, I sat there...
(LAUGHTER)
... I sat there watching ad after ad after ad, false ad. All paid for by your friends on Wall Street that gave so much money because they know you're going to protect them. And, frankly, you should have changed the laws.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump...
TRUMP: If you don't like what I did, you should have changed the laws.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, I want to ask you about one last question in this topic. You have been warning at rallies recently that this election is rigged and that Hillary Clinton is in the process of trying to steal it from you.
Your running mate, Governor Pence, pledged on Sunday that he and you -- his words -- "will absolutely accept the result of this election." Today your daughter, Ivanka, said the same thing. I want to ask you here on the stage tonight: Do you make the same commitment that you will absolutely -- sir, that you will absolutely accept the result of this election?
TRUMP: I will look at it at the time. I'm not looking at anything now. I'll look at it at the time.
What I've seen -- what I've seen is so bad. First of all, the media is so dishonest and so corrupt, and the pile-on is so amazing. The New York Times actually wrote an article about it, but they don't even care. It's so dishonest. And they've poisoned the mind of the voters.
But unfortunately for them, I think the voters are seeing through it. I think they're going to see through it. We'll find out on November 8th. But I think they're going to see through it.
WALLACE: But, sir, there's...
TRUMP: If you look -- excuse me, Chris -- if you look at your voter rolls, you will see millions of people that are registered to vote -- millions, this isn't coming from me -- this is coming from Pew Report and other places -- millions of people that are registered to vote that shouldn't be registered to vote.
So let me just give you one other thing. So I talk about the corrupt media. I talk about the millions of people -- tell you one other thing. She shouldn't be allowed to run. It's crooked -- she's -- she's guilty of a very, very serious crime. She should not be allowed to run.
And just in that respect, I say it's rigged, because she should never...
WALLACE: But...
TRUMP: Chris, she should never have been allowed to run for the presidency based on what she did with e-mails and so many other things.
WALLACE: But, sir, there is a tradition in this country -- in fact, one of the prides of this country -- is the peaceful transition of power and that no matter how hard-fought a campaign is, that at the end of the campaign that the loser concedes to the winner. Not saying that you're necessarily going to be the loser or the winner, but that the loser concedes to the winner and that the country comes together in part for the good of the country. Are you saying you're not prepared now to commit to that principle?
TRUMP: What I'm saying is that I will tell you at the time. I'll keep you in suspense. OK?
CLINTON: Well, Chris, let me respond to that, because that's horrifying. You know, every time Donald thinks things are not going in his direction, he claims whatever it is, is rigged against him.
The FBI conducted a year-long investigation into my e-mails. They concluded there was no case; he said the FBI was rigged. He lost the Iowa caucus. He lost the Wisconsin primary. He said the Republican primary was rigged against him. Then Trump University gets sued for fraud and racketeering; he claims the court system and the federal judge is rigged against him. There was even a time when he didn't get an Emmy for his TV program three years in a row and he started tweeting that the Emmys were rigged against him.
TRUMP: Should have gotten it.
(LAUGHTER)
CLINTON: This is -- this is a mindset. This is how Donald thinks. And it's funny, but it's also really troubling.
WALLACE: OK.
CLINTON: So that is not the way our democracy works. We've been around for 240 years. We've had free and fair elections. We've accepted the outcomes when we may not have liked them. And that is what must be expected of anyone standing on a debate stage during a general election. You know, President Obama said the other day when you're whining before the game is even finished...
(APPLAUSE)
WALLACE: Hold on. Hold on, folks. Hold on, folks.
CLINTON: ... it just shows you're not up to doing the job. And let's -- you know, let's be clear about what he is saying and what that means. He is denigrating -- he's talking down our democracy. And I, for one, am appalled that somebody who is the nominee of one of our two major parties would take that kind of position.
TRUMP: I think what the FBI did and what the Department of Justice did, including meeting with her husband, the attorney general, in the back of an airplane on the tarmac in Arizona, I think it's disgraceful. I think it's a disgrace.
WALLACE: All right.
TRUMP: I think we've never had a situation so bad in this country.
(APPLAUSE)
WALLACE: Hold on, folks. This doesn't do any good for anyone. Let's please continue the debate, and let's move on to the subject of foreign hot spots.
The Iraqi offensive to take back Mosul has begun. If they are successful in pushing ISIS out of that city and out of all of Iraq, the question then becomes, what happens the day after? And that's something that whichever of you ends up -- whoever of you ends up as president is going to have to confront.
Will you put U.S. troops into that vacuum to make sure that ISIS doesn't come back or isn't replaced by something even worse? Secretary Clinton, you go first in this segment. You have two minutes.
CLINTON: Well, I am encouraged that there is an effort led by the Iraqi army, supported by Kurdish forces, and also given the help and advice from the number of special forces and other Americans on the ground. But I will not support putting American soldiers into Iraq as an occupying force. I don't think that is in our interest, and I don't think that would be smart to do. In fact, Chris, I think that would be a big red flag waving for ISIS to reconstitute itself.
The goal here is to take back Mosul. It's going to be a hard fight. I've got no illusions about that. And then continue to press into Syria to begin to take back and move on Raqqa, which is the ISIS headquarters.
I am hopeful that the hard work that American military advisers have done will pay off and that we will see a real -- a really successful military operation. But we know we've got lots of work to do. Syria will remain a hotbed of terrorism as long as the civil war, aided and abetted by the Iranians and the Russians, continue.
So I have said, look, we need to keep our eye on ISIS. That's why I want to have an intelligence surge that protects us here at home, why we have to go after them from the air, on the ground, online, why we have to make sure here at home we don't let terrorists buy weapons. If you're too dangerous to fly, you're too dangerous to buy a gun.
And I'm going to continue to push for a no-fly zone and safe havens within Syria not only to help protect the Syrians and prevent the constant outflow of refugees, but to, frankly, gain some leverage on both the Syrian government and the Russians so that perhaps we can have the kind of serious negotiation necessary to bring the conflict to an end and go forward on a political track.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, same question. If we are able to push ISIS out of Mosul and out of Iraq, will -- would you be willing to put U.S. troops in there to prevent their return or something else?
TRUMP: Let me tell you, Mosul is so sad. We had Mosul. But when she left, when she took everybody out, we lost Mosul. Now we're fighting again to get Mosul. The problem with Mosul and what they wanted to do is they wanted to get the leaders of ISIS who they felt were in Mosul.
About three months ago, I started reading that they want to get the leaders and they're going to attack Mosul. Whatever happened to the element of surprise, OK? We announce we're going after Mosul. I have been reading about going after Mosul now for about -- how long is it, Hillary, three months? These people have all left. They've all left.
The element of surprise. Douglas MacArthur, George Patton spinning in their graves when they see the stupidity of our country. So we're now fighting for Mosul, that we had. All she had to do was stay there, and now we're going in to get it.
But you know who the big winner in Mosul is going to be after we eventually get it? And the only reason they did it is because she's running for the office of president and they want to look tough. They want to look good. He violated the red line in the sand, and he made so many mistakes, made all the mistakes. That's why we have the great migration. But she wanted to look good for the election. So they're going in.
But who's going to get Mosul, really? We'll take Mosul eventually. But the way -- if you look at what's happening, much tougher than they thought. Much, much tougher. Much more dangerous. Going to be more deaths that they thought.
But the leaders that we wanted to get are all gone because they're smart. They say, what do we need this for? So Mosul is going to be a wonderful thing. And Iran should write us a letter of thank you, just like the really stupid -- the stupidest deal of all time, a deal that's going to give Iran absolutely nuclear weapons. Iran should write us yet another letter saying thank you very much, because Iran, as I said many years ago, Iran is taking over Iraq, something they've wanted to do forever, but we've made it so easy for them.
So we're now going to take Mosul. And do you know who's going to be the beneficiary? Iran. Oh, yeah, they're making -- I mean, they are outsmarting -- look, you're not there, you might be involved in that decision. But you were there when you took everybody out of Mosul and out of Iraq. You shouldn't have been in Iraq, but you did vote for it. You shouldn't have been in Iraq, but once you were in Iraq, you should have never left the way.
WALLACE: Sir, your two minutes are up.
TRUMP: The point is, the big winner is going to be Iran.
CLINTON: Well, you know, once again, Donald is implying that he didn't support the invasion of Iraq. I said it was a mistake. I've said that years ago. He has consistently denied what is...
TRUMP: Wrong.
CLINTON: ... a very clear fact that...
TRUMP: Wrong.
CLINTON: ... before the invasion, he supported it. And, you know, I just want everybody to go Google it. Google "Donald Trump Iraq." And you will see the dozens of sources which verify that he was for the invasion of Iraq.
TRUMP: Wrong.
CLINTON: And you can actually hear the audio of him saying that. Now, why does that matter? Well, it matters because he has not told the truth about that position. I guess he believes it makes him look better now to contrast with me because I did vote for it.
But what's really important here is to understand all the interplay. Mosul is a Sunni city. Mosul is on the border of Syria. And, yes, we do need to go after Baghdadi, and -- just like we went after bin Laden, while you were doing "Celebrity Apprentice," and we brought him to justice. We need to go after the leadership.
But we need to get rid of them, get rid of their fighters. There are an estimated several thousand fighters in Mosul. They've been digging underground. They've been prepared to defend. It's going to be tough fighting. But I think we can take back Mosul, and then we can move on into Syria and take back Raqqa.
This is what we have to do. I'm just amazed that he seems to think that the Iraqi government and our allies and everybody else launched the attack on Mosul to help me in this election, but that's how Donald thinks. You know, he always is looking for some conspiracy.
TRUMP: Chris, we don't gain anything.
CLINTON: He has all the conspiracy theories...
(CROSSTALK)
TRUMP: Iran is taking over Iraq.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, it's...
(CROSSTALK)
TRUMP: Iran is taking over Iraq. We don't gain anything.
CLINTON: This conspiracy theory, which he's been spewing out for quite some time.
TRUMP: If they did it by surprise...
(CROSSTALK)
WALLACE: Wait, wait, wait, Secretary Clinton, it's an open discussion.
CLINTON: He says...
(CROSSTALK)
TRUMP: We could have gained if they did it by surprise.
WALLACE: Secretary, please let Mr. Trump speak.
CLINTON: ... unfit, and he proves it every time he talks.
TRUMP: No, you are the one that's unfit. You know, WikiLeaks just actually came out -- John Podesta said some horrible things about you, and, boy, was he right. He said some beauties. And you know, Bernie Sanders, he said you have bad judgment. You do.
And if you think that going into Mosul after we let the world know we're going in, and all of the people that we really wanted -- the leaders -- they're all gone. If you think that was good, then you do. Now, John Podesta said you have terrible instincts. Bernie Sanders said you have bad judgment. I agree with both.
CLINTON: Well, you should ask Bernie Sanders who he's supporting for president. And he has said...
TRUMP: Which is a big mistake.
CLINTON: ... as he has campaigned for me around the country, you are the most dangerous person to run for president in the modern history of America. I think he's right.
WALLACE: Let's turn to Aleppo. Mr. Trump, in the last debate, you were both asked about the situation in the Syrian city of Aleppo. And I want to follow up on that, because you said several things in that debate which were not true, sir. You said that Aleppo has basically fallen. In fact, there -- in fact, there are... TRUMP: It's a catastrophe. I mean...
WALLACE: It's a catastrophe, but there...
TRUMP: ... it's a mess.
WALLACE: There are a quarter of...
TRUMP: Have you seen it? Have you seen it?
WALLACE: Sir...
TRUMP: Have you seen what's happening to Aleppo?
WALLACE: Sir, if I may finish my question...
TRUMP: OK, so it hasn't fallen. Take a look at it.
WALLACE: Well, there are a quarter of a million people still living there and being slaughtered.
TRUMP: That's right. And they are being slaughtered...
WALLACE: Yes.
TRUMP: ... because of bad decisions.
WALLACE: If I may just finish here, and you also said that -- that Syria and Russia are busy fighting ISIS. In fact, they have been the ones who've been bombing and shelling eastern Aleppo, and they just announced a humanitarian pause, in effect, admitting that they have been bombing and shelling Aleppo. Would you like to clear that up, sir?
TRUMP: Well, Aleppo is a disaster. It's a humanitarian nightmare. But it has fallen from the -- from any standpoint. I mean, what do you need, a signed document? Take a look at Aleppo. It is so sad when you see what's happened.
And a lot of this is because of Hillary Clinton, because what's happened is, by fighting Assad, who turned out to be a lot tougher than she thought, and now she's going to say, oh, he loves Assad, she's -- he's just much tougher and much smarter than her and Obama. And everyone thought he was gone two years ago, three years ago. He -- he aligned with Russia.
He now also aligned with Iran, who we made very powerful. We gave them $150 billion back. We give them $1.7 billion in cash. I mean, cash. Bundles of cash as big as this stage. We gave them $1.7 billion.
Now they have -- he has aligned with Russia and with Iran. They don't want ISIS, but they have other things, because we're backing -- we're backing rebels. We don't know who the rebels are. We're giving them lots of money, lots of everything. We don't know who the rebels are. And when and if -- and it's not going to happen, because you have Russia and you have Iran now. But if they ever did overthrow Assad, you might end up with -- as bad as Assad is, and he's a bad guy, but you may very well end up with worse than Assad.
If she did nothing, we'd be in much better shape. And this is what's caused the great migration, where she's taking in tens of thousands of Syrian refugees, who probably in many cases -- not probably, who are definitely...
WALLACE: Let me...
TRUMP: ... in many cases, ISIS-aligned, and we now have them in our country, and wait until you see -- this is going to be the great Trojan horse. And wait until you see what happens in the coming years. Lots of luck, Hillary. Thanks a lot for doing a great job.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, you have talked about -- and in the last debate and again today -- that you would impose a no-fly zone to try to protect the people of Aleppo and to stop the killing there. President Obama has refused to do that because he fears it's going to draw us closer or deeper into the conflict.
And General Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says you impose a no-fly zone, chances are you're going to get into a war -- his words -- with Syria and Russia. So the question I have is, if you impose a no-fly zone -- first of all, how do you respond to their concerns? Secondly, if you impose a no-fly zone and a Russian plane violates that, does President Clinton shoot that plane down?
CLINTON: Well, Chris, first of all, I think a no-fly zone could save lives and could hasten the end of the conflict. I'm well aware of the really legitimate concerns that you have expressed from both the president and the general.
This would not be done just on the first day. This would take a lot of negotiation. And it would also take making it clear to the Russians and the Syrians that our purpose here was to provide safe zones on the ground.
We've had millions of people leave Syria and those millions of people inside Syria who have been dislocated. So I think we could strike a deal and make it very clear to the Russians and the Syrians that this was something that we believe was in the best interests of the people on the ground in Syria, it would help us with our fight against ISIS.
But I want to respond to what Donald said about refugees. He's made these claims repeatedly. I am not going to let anyone into this country who is not vetted, who we do not have confidence in. But I am not going to slam the door on women and children. That picture of that little 4-year-old boy in Aleppo, with the blood coming down his face while he sat in an ambulance, is haunting. And so we are going to do very careful, thorough vetting. That does not solve our internal challenges with ISIS and our need to stop radicalization, to work with American Muslim communities who are on the front lines to identify and prevent attacks. In fact, the killer of the dozens of people at the nightclub in Orlando, the Pulse nightclub, was born in Queens, the same place Donald was born. So let's be clear about what the threat is and how we are best going to be able to meet it.
And, yes, some of that threat emanates from over in Syria and Iraq, and we've got to keep fighting, and I will defeat ISIS, and some of it is we have to up our game and be much smarter here at home.
WALLACE: Folks, I want to get into our final segment.
TRUMP: But I just have to...
WALLACE: Real quick.
TRUMP: It's so ridiculous what she -- she will defeat ISIS. We should have never let ISIS happen in the first place. And right now, they're in 32 countries.
WALLACE: OK.
TRUMP: We should have -- wait one second. They had a cease-fire three weeks ago. A cease-fire, the United States, Russia, and Syria. And during the cease-fire, Russia took over vast swatches of land, and then they said we don't want the cease-fire anymore.
We are so outplayed on missiles, on cease-fires. They are outplayed. Now, she wasn't there. I assume she had nothing to do with it. But our country is so outplayed by Putin and Assad, and by the way -- and by Iran. Nobody can believe how stupid our leadership is.
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, Secretary Clinton -- no, we need to move on to our final segment, and that is the national debt, which has not been discussed until tonight.
Our national debt, as a share of the economy, our GDP, is now 77 percent. That's the highest since just after World War II. But the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget says, Secretary Clinton, under your plan, debt would rise to 86 percent of GDP over the next 10 years. Mr. Trump, under your plan, they say it would rise to 105 percent of GDP over the next 10 years. The question is, why are both of you ignoring this problem? Mr. Trump, you go first.
TRUMP: Well, I say they're wrong, because I'm going to create tremendous jobs. And we're bringing GDP from, really, 1 percent, which is what it is now, and if she got in, it will be less than zero. But we're bringing it from 1 percent up to 4 percent. And I actually think we can go higher than 4 percent. I think you can go to 5 percent or 6 percent. And if we do, you don't have to bother asking your question, because we have a tremendous machine. We will have created a tremendous economic machine once again. To do that, we're taking back jobs. We're not going to let our companies be raided by other countries where we lose all our jobs, we don't make our product anymore. It's very sad. But I'm going to create a -- the kind of a country that we were from the standpoint of industry. We used to be there. We've given it up. We've become very, very sloppy.
We've had people that are political hacks making the biggest deals in the world, bigger than companies. You take these big companies, these trade deals are far bigger than these companies, and yet we don't use our great leaders, many of whom back me and many of whom back Hillary, I must say. But we don't use those people. Those are the people -- these are the greatest negotiators in the world. We have the greatest businesspeople in the world. We have to use them to negotiate our trade deals.
We use political hacks. We use people that get the position because they gave -- they made a campaign contribution and they're dealing with China and people that are very much smarter than they are. So we have to use our great people.
But that being said, we will create an economic machine the likes of which we haven't seen in many decades. And people, Chris, will again go back to work and they'll make a lot of money. And we'll have companies that will grow and expand and start from new.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton?
CLINTON: Well, first, when I hear Donald talk like that and know that his slogan is "Make America Great Again," I wonder when he thought America was great. And before he rushes and says, "You know, before you and President Obama were there," I think it's important to recognize that he has been criticizing our government for decades.
You know, back in 1987, he took out a $100,000 ad in the New York Times, during the time when President Reagan was president, and basically said exactly what he just said now, that we were the laughingstock of the world. He was criticizing President Reagan. This is the way Donald thinks about himself, puts himself into, you know, the middle and says, "You know, I alone can fix it," as he said on the convention stage.
But if you look at the debt, which is the issue you asked about, Chris, I pay for everything I'm proposing. I do not add a penny to the national debt. I take that very seriously, because I do think it's one of the issues we've got to come to grips with.
So when I talk about how we're going to pay for education, how we're going to invest in infrastructure, how we're going to get the cost of prescription drugs down, and a lot of the other issues that people talk to me about all the time, I've made it very clear we are going where the money is. We are going to ask the wealthy and corporations to pay their fair share.
And there is no evidence whatsoever that that will slow down or diminish our growth. In fact, I think just the opposite. We'll have what economists call middle-out growth. We've got to get back to rebuilding the middle class, the families of America. That's where growth will come from. That's why I want to invest in you. I want to invest in your family.
And I think that's the smartest way to grow the economy, to make the economy fairer. And we just have a big disagreement about this. It may be because of our experiences. You know, he started off with his dad as a millionaire...
TRUMP: Yeah, yeah, we've heard -- we've heard this before, Hillary.
CLINTON: I started off with -- my dad was a small-business man.
TRUMP: We've heard this before.
CLINTON: And I think it -- you know, it's a difference that affects how we see the world and what we want to do with the economy.
WALLACE: Time.
TRUMP: Thank you, Hillary. Could I just respond?
WALLACE: Well, no, sir, because we're running out of time...
TRUMP: Because I did disagree with Ronald Reagan very strongly on trade. I disagreed with him. We should have been much tougher on trade even then. I've been waiting for years. Nobody does it right.
WALLACE: OK.
TRUMP: And frankly, now we're going to do it right.
WALLACE: All right. The one last area I want to get into with you in this debate is the fact that the biggest driver of our debt is entitlements, which is 60 percent of all federal spending. Now, the Committee for federal -- a Responsible Federal Budget has looked at both of your plans and they say neither of you has a serious plan that is going to solve the fact that Medicare's going to run out of money in the 2020s, Social Security is going to run out of money in the 2030s, and at that time, recipients are going to take huge cuts in their benefits.
So, in effect, the final question I want to ask you in this regard is -- and let me start with you, Mr. Trump, would President Trump make a deal to save Medicare and Social Security that included both tax increases and benefit cuts, in effect, a grand bargain on entitlements?
TRUMP: I'm cutting taxes. We're going to grow the economy. It's going to grow at a record rate of growth.
WALLACE: That's not going to help in the entitlements.
TRUMP: No, it's going to totally help you. And one thing we have to do: Repeal and replace the disaster known as Obamacare. It's destroying our country. It's destroying our businesses, our small business and our big businesses. We have to repeal and replace Obamacare.
You take a look at the kind of numbers that that will cost us in the year '17, it is a disaster. If we don't repeal and replace -- now, it's probably going to die of its own weight. But Obamacare has to go. It's -- the premiums are going up 60 percent, 70 percent, 80 percent. Next year they're going to go up over 100 percent.
And I'm really glad that the premiums have started -- at least the people see what's happening, because she wants to keep Obamacare and she wants to make it even worse, and it can't get any worse. Bad health care at the most expensive price. We have to repeal and replace Obamacare.
WALLACE: And, Secretary Clinton, same question, because at this point, Social Security and Medicare are going to run out, the trust funds are going to run out of money. Will you as president entertain -- will you consider a grand bargain, a deal that includes both tax increases and benefit cuts to try to save both programs?
CLINTON: Well, Chris, I am on record as saying that we need to put more money into the Social Security Trust Fund. That's part of my commitment to raise taxes on the wealthy. My Social Security payroll contribution will go up, as will Donald's, assuming he can't figure out how to get out of it. But what we want to do is to replenish the Social Security Trust Fund...
TRUMP: Such a nasty woman.
CLINTON: ... by making sure that we have sufficient resources, and that will come from either raising the cap and/or finding other ways to get more money into it. I will not cut benefits. I want to enhance benefits for low-income workers and for women who have been disadvantaged by the current Social Security system.
But what Donald is proposing with these massive tax cuts will result in a $20 trillion additional national debt. That will have dire consequences for Social Security and Medicare.
And I'll say something about the Affordable Care Act, which he wants to repeal. The Affordable Care Act extended the solvency of the Medicare Trust Fund. So if repeals it, our Medicare problem gets worse. What we need to do is go after...
TRUMP: Your husband disagrees with you.
CLINTON: ... the long-term health care drivers. We've got to get costs down, increase value, emphasize wellness. I have a plan for doing that. And I think that we will be able to get entitlement spending under control by with more resources and harder decisions.
WALLACE: This is -- this is the final time, probably to both of your delight, that you're going to be on a stage together in this campaign. I would like to end it on a positive note. You had not agreed to closing statements, but it seems to me in a funny way that might make it more interesting because you haven't prepared closing statements.
So I'd like you each to take -- and we're going to put a clock up, a minute, as the final question in the final debate, to tell the American people why they should elect you to be the next president. This is another new mini-segment. Secretary Clinton, it's your turn to go first.
CLINTON: Well, I would like to say to everyone watching tonight that I'm reaching out to all Americans -- Democrats, Republicans, and independents -- because we need everybody to help make our country what it should be, to grow the economy, to make it fairer, to make it work for everyone. We need your talents, your skills, your commitments, your energy, your ambition.
You know, I've been privileged to see the presidency up close. And I know the awesome responsibility of protecting our country and the incredible opportunity of working to try to make life better for all of you. I have made the cause of children and families really my life's work.
That's what my mission will be in the presidency. I will stand up for families against powerful interests, against corporations. I will do everything that I can to make sure that you have good jobs, with rising incomes, that your kids have good educations from preschool through college. I hope you will give me a chance to serve as your president.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, thank you.
Mr. Trump?
TRUMP: She's raising the money from the people she wants to control. Doesn't work that way.
But when I started this campaign, I started it very strongly. It's called "Make America Great Again." We're going to make America great. We have a depleted military. It has to be helped, has to be fixed. We have the greatest people on Earth in our military. We don't take care of our veterans. We take care of illegal immigrants, people that come into the country illegally, better than we take care of our vets. That can't happen.
Our policemen and women are disrespected. We need law and order, but we need justice, too. Our inner cities are a disaster. You get shot walking to the store. They have no education. They have no jobs. I will do more for African-Americans and Latinos than she can ever do in 10 lifetimes.
All she's done is talk to the African-Americans and to the Latinos, but they get the vote, and then they come back, they say, we'll see you in four years. We are going to make America strong again, and we are going to make America great again, and it has to start now. We cannot take four more years of Barack Obama, and that's what you get when you get her.
WALLACE: Thank you both.
(APPLAUSE)
Secretary Clinton -- hold on just a moment, folks. Secretary Clinton, Mr. Trump, I want to thank you both for participating in all three of these debates.
That brings to an end this year's debates sponsored by the Commission on Presidential Debates. We want to thank the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and its students for having us. Now the decision is up to you.
While millions have already voted, Election Day, November 8th, is just 20 days away. One thing everyone here can agree on: We hope you will go vote. It is one of the honors and obligations of living in this great country. Thank you, and good night.
VIDEO - Kavanaugh Faces Questions On Abortion, Guns And Presidential Power During Hearings : NPR
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 12:32
Day 2 of the Senate hearings for Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh was dominated by tough questions on substantive issues, from guns to abortion to presidential power.
ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:
Guns, abortion, the scope of presidential power - all issues being put to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh today. This is the second day of his confirmation hearings and the first chance for senators on the judiciary committee to question him in public. In a moment, we'll hear from one of those senators.
First, NPR legal affairs correspondent Nina Totenberg joins us to walk through some of the nominee's responses today. Hi, Nina.
NINA TOTENBERG, BYLINE: Hi.
SHAPIRO: Let's begin with guns. Kavanaugh has a reputation as being a very pro-gun rights judge. How was he pressed on that today?
TOTENBERG: Well, as a judge, Kavanaugh has staked out a starkly different position from most lower court judges on gun rights, disagreeing even with fellow conservatives. Most notably, he dissented when his court upheld a District of Columbia statute banning assault weapons and ammunition magazines of more than 10 bullets.
Today, questioned by Senator Dianne Feinstein, he maintained that under the Constitution and Supreme Court precedent, only unusual weapons can be regulated. And semi-automatic assault rifles are not unusual. They're in common use. Let's take a listen to the exchange.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
DIANNE FEINSTEIN: You're saying the numbers determine common use.
BRETT KAVANAUGH: They're widely possessed in the United States, Senator.
SHAPIRO: Beyond guns, he was also asked about abortion, and we know President Trump promised to name someone to the court who would overturn Roe v. Wade. What did Kavanaugh have to say about abortion today?
TOTENBERG: Kavanaugh said nobody had asked him to make any promises when he was being considered for the court. And he said, as others have before him, that the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision is, in his view, established Supreme Court precedent and more.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
KAVANAUGH: One of the important things to keep in mind about Roe v. Wade is that it has been reaffirmed many times over the past 45 years, as you know, and, most prominently, most importantly, reaffirmed in Planned Parenthood v. Casey in 1992.
TOTENBERG: The Casey decision specifically upheld Roe as binding precedent.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
KAVANAUGH: That makes Casey a precedent on precedent.
SHAPIRO: So did we learn anything that might telegraph Kavanaugh's views on how he might rule and whether he would live up to President Trump's promise to overturn Roe?
TOTENBERG: We didn't really learn a huge amount. After all, the Supreme Court is always free to reverse its past precedents. And even if it doesn't reverse Roe, it can nibble it to death, so that it could for instance uphold anti-abortion laws that exist in lots of states, making access to abortion for all practical purposes impossible in those states.
SHAPIRO: Has Kavanaugh ruled in a case involving abortion?
TOTENBERG: Really only one, and it was the focus of Senator Durbin's questioning today. The case involved a 17-year-old pregnant girl who crossed the border illegally, was detained in Texas and wanted an abortion. She jumped through all the legal hoops. She went to a judge who ruled that she was mature enough to make the decision. Pursuant to Texas law, she got an ultrasound. She was also required by federal authorities to get counseling from an anti-abortion crisis counselor. And she still wanted the abortion when she was 15 weeks pregnant. The D.C. Court of Appeals ruled that the Trump administration had to release her to get the abortion, which was being paid for by a third-party organization, and Kavanaugh dissented.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
KAVANAUGH: The government argued that it was proper or appropriate to transfer her quickly first to an immigration sponsor.
TOTENBERG: Meaning a family member or friend if one could be found. Judge Kavanaugh thought that was a reasonable requirement as long as the government acted quickly.
SHAPIRO: Let's talk for a minute about presidential power and Kavanaugh's views on executive authority, especially in the context of criminal investigations, which could have some consequences for President Trump. What did Kavanaugh have to say today?
TOTENBERG: Kavanaugh in 1999 criticized the Supreme Court's decision ordering President Nixon to turn over incriminating tape recordings pursuant to a subpoena. And he suggested then that that case was wrongly decided. Today he said that his comments in 1999 were misinterpreted, that, in his words, there was a misunderstanding. He said the Nixon tapes decision was among the great Supreme Court decisions because, as he put it...
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
KAVANAUGH: The court stood up for judicial independence in a moment of national crisis.
TOTENBERG: But when Senator Feinstein got more precise, Kavanaugh gave a bit of a fudgier answer.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
FEINSTEIN: Was it rightly decided?
KAVANAUGH: So I have said that - I've said, yes, that a - the court's holding that a criminal trial subpoena to a president in the context of the special counsel regulations in that case, for information - a criminal trial subpoena for information under the specific...
TOTENBERG: You can hear him hemming and hawing there - certainly not as clear an answer as he probably wanted it to be.
SHAPIRO: Well, Nina, you've covered about 20 of these confirmation hearings, including some where the nominee was not confirmed. How do you think Kavanaugh did today compared to the others you've seen?
TOTENBERG: Well, as far as I'm concerned, Chief Justice John Roberts retired the trophy for best witness even though he really didn't tell the senators all that much about his legal views. But he had what most nominees including Kavanaugh pretty much lack. Roberts had a wicked and quick sense of humor. Kavanaugh, in contrast, is a pretty serious guy on the witness stand. The one giggle we got today was really with the aid of Republican Lindsey Graham and Democrat Dianne Feinstein. Graham asked the nominee how he wants to be remembered. Take a listen.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
KAVANAUGH: Good dad, good judge...
FEINSTEIN: Good husband.
LINDSEY GRAHAM: I think he's getting there.
KAVANAUGH: Good husband.
(LAUGHTER)
GRAHAM: Thanks, Dianne. You helped him a lot (laughter) - going to be better for you tonight (laughter).
(LAUGHTER)
SHAPIRO: All right, NPR's Nina Totenberg, thank you for your coverage of this confirmation hearing.
TOTENBERG: Thank you, Ari.
Copyright (C) 2018 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at www.npr.org for further information.
NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR's programming is the audio record.
VIDEO - John Kasich states McCain was Put to Death?! 5:04 minute mark - YouTube
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 12:14
VIDEO - Honest Government Ad | Anti Encryption Law - YouTube
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VIDEO - McCAIN Put to death - YouTube
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 10:51
VIDEO - Mark Dice on Twitter: "This is a real scene from Jack Dorsey's testimony today.'... "
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 05:19
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VIDEO - Sacha Baron Cohen Sued Over 'Who Is America?' Appearance by Roy Moore | THR News - YouTube
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VIDEO-Senate Democrats interrupt Kavanaugh hearing 76 times | SUPERcuts!
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VIDEO - Ep 98 | Nike's Notorious Fumble: Colin Kaepernick | Here's the Deal - CRTV
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Nike's latest ''Just Do It'' campaign features none other than the cowardly ex-athlete Colin Kaepernick. When it comes to buying Nike products, I say ''Just Don't Do It."
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VIDEO - Sanders takes shots at Jeff Bezos amid Amazon feud | Fox News
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 22:28
Bernie Sanders had words for Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos on Monday. (Geoff Hansen /The Valley News via AP/Reuters)
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., used his speech at a Vermont rally to take parting shots at Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos while discussing the wage gap in the U.S.
Sanders was in Vermont and New Hampshire to give a keynote speech at an AFL-CIO Labor Day breakfast event before holding two rallies, according to MyChamplainValley.com.
''We have one person whose wealth is increasing by $250 million every single day, while he pays thousands of his workers wages that are so low that they are forced to go on food stamps, Medicaid, and subsidized housing,'' Sanders said, referencing Bezos.
BERNIE SANDERS TEES OFF ON TRUMP IN LABOR DAY VISIT TO KEY PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY STATE
Sanders also used his events to address Vermont workers.
''The reality is that the average American worker is still seeing a decline in his and her wages,'' he said. ''People continue to work longer hours for low wages. Here in Vermont, folks are working two or three jobs to put food on the table and pay bills.''
The senator's shots at Amazon come days after he claimed the company doesn't pay its employees enough and voiced concerns over conditions at fulfillment centers.
''Bottom line: the taxpayers of this country should not have to subsidize employees at a company owned by Mr. Bezos who is worth $155 billion. That is absurd,'' Sanders wrote in a post Saturday.
Sanders also claimed Amazon had been ''less than forthcoming with information about their employment practices.'' He said the company's average pay was about 9 percent less than industry average and ''well below'' a living wage.
Amazon refuted Sanders' claims that it doesn't pay employees a livable wage and therefore they have to rely on government programs such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
"We have one person whose wealth is increasing by $250 million every single day, while he pays thousands of his workers wages that are so low that they are forced to go on food stamps, Medicaid, and subsidized housing."
- Sen. Sanders on Jeff Bezos
''Senator Sanders continues to spread misleading statements about pay and benefits,'' a company blog post read. ''Amazon is proud to have created over 130,000 new jobs last year alone. In the U.S., the average hourly wage for a full-time associate in our fulfillment centers, including cash, stock, and incentive bonuses, is over $15/hour before overtime. We encourage anyone to compare our pay and benefits to other retailers.''
Sanders is expected to unveil a bill this week that would require large employers to cover the cost of federal assistance received by their employees by imposing a 100 percent tax on those benefits.
Ryan Gaydos is an editor for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @RyanGaydos.
VIDEO - ODDITY: Gen. Mattis and Gen. Kelly Eye Lindsey Graham and Huma Abedine - YouTube
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 22:23
VIDEO - '–¶ 9.5 JENS GANMAN & ARON FLAM "Carbecues & Sweden's Election" IN ENGLISH by DEKONSTRUKTIV KRITIK
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 22:20
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VIDEO - Ingrid Carlqvist on how Sweden rigs elections for the left - YouTube
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:38
VIDEO - OPUS 72 Sociopath - YouTube
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VIDEO - Exposed - Creator of QAnon Speaks for the First Time - YouTube
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:20
VIDEO - CSPAN on Twitter: "As a protester interrupts hearing with @Twitter CEO @Jack Dorsey, Rep. Billy Long (@USRepLong @auctnr1), a former auctioneer, takes action. Watch full hearing with here: https://t.co/Gh099bDc9w'... https://t.co/vg3IMdXJXe"
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:18
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VIDEO - REPORT: Intelligence Community Believes It Was a Different Michael Cohen Who Visited Prague
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:01
VIDEO REPORT: Intelligence Community Believes It Was a Different Michael Cohen Who Visited PragueCNN's Jake Tapper reported Wednesday morning that intelligence officials looked into allegations from an explosive unsubstantiated memo that Trump lawyer Michael Cohen visited Prague in late August to meet with Russian officials, and found that it was a different Michael Cohen who visited the city.
Cohen strongly denied the charges Tuesday, saying that he had never been to Prague. The Washingtonian reported that two sources at the University of Southern California confirmed that Cohen was in Los Angeles at the time he was supposed to have been in Europe.
Tapper seemingly confirmed Cohen's story. ''People tried to run that down and concluded it was a different Michael Cohen. It was a Michael Cohen with a passport from another country, same birth year, different birth date,'' he said.
''For him to dispute he was in the Czech Republic comports with our reporting,'' Tapper said. ''It's one of the reasons the intelligence chiefs did not get specific with these allegations. That's why I hope at the press conference today people are more general, because a lot of that stuff just has not been proven.''
Watch above, via CNN.
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VIDEO - Lanny Davis: "So-Called Dossier" False, Cohen Was Never In Prague | Video | RealClearPolitics
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 20:58
Lanny Davis, attorney for Michael Cohen, trashed the infamous Trump dossier, a document put together by former British spy Christopher Steele, in an interview with NBC's Chuck Todd on Wednesday.Davis said the part about Cohen visiting Prague to meet with Russians in 2016 "never" happened." He called it the "so-called dossier" and said it mentions his client in a "false" manner. On Tuesday, a superior court judge threw out a defamation lawsuit against Steele for failing to provide evidence that information in the dossier was knowingly falsified.
"Can you say definitively whether you know if Michael Cohen was ever in Prague in 2016?" Todd on Wednesday's edition of Meet the Press Daily on MSNBC.
"Never, never in Prague," Davis sternly said.
"Never ever?" Todd pressed.
"Never ever in Prague," Davis answered. "And the reason, just to let your viewers know what we're talking about, is that the dossier, the so-called dossier, mentions his name 14 times. One of which is a meeting with Russians in Prague. 14 times. False."
VIDEO - Paul Joseph Watson on Twitter: "CNN's Jeffrey Toobin says Trump's tweet against Sessions "may be an impeachable offense." This is almost as absurd a statement as when Toobin said Antifa was an "African-American organization". Trump. Derangement. S
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 20:04
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VIDEO - Paul Joseph Watson on Twitter: "Dems sabotaging the Kavanaugh hearing was coordinated in advance. The 42,000 documents complaint was just an excuse.'... "
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 20:03
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VIDEO - Paul Joseph Watson on Twitter: "Here's the rough video of Alex Jones confronting Marco Rubio. Rubio claimed to not know who Jones was, then got triggered when Jones patted him on the back. Rubio claimed he knew nothing about Big Tech deplatforming
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 20:01
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VIDEO - Live: Facebook and Twitter Executives Testify on Russian Interference in U.S. Elections
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 19:25
September 5, 2018 2018-09-05T09:33:41-04:00 https://images.c-span.org/Files/d99/20180905093741010_hd.jpg Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg testified on Russian interference in U.S. elections before the Senate Intelligence Committee.Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg testified on Russian interference in U.S. elections before the Senate Intelligence Committee.
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VIDEO - Hear the Entire 11 Minute Bob Woodward and Donald Trump Phone Conversation | Mark Simone | 710 WOR
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:54
Mark Simone posted by Mark Simone - Sep 4, 2018
VIDEO - The Daily Show with Jon Stewart:Judith Miller Pt. 2 - Bing video
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:45
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart:Judith Miller Pt. 2 06:52 HD Comedy Central The Daily Show with Jon Stewart:Exclusive - Judith Miller Extended Interview Pt. 2 15:35 Comedy Central · 102,000+ views The Daily Show with Jon Stewart:Miller Time 01:36 Comedy Central · 2,000+ views Judith Miller & James Meigs on Fox Part 2 01:27 Dailymotion
VIDEO - Exclusive - Judith Miller Extended Interview Pt. 1 - The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Video Clip) | Comedy Central
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:25
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Clip 4/29/2015
"The Story: A Reporter's Journey" author Judith Miller conveys how challenging it was to provide accurate reporting in the wake of 9/11 and leading up to the Iraq War.
Tags: interviews extended interviews exclusives Judith Miller books media New York Times history Bush administration 9/11 Al Qaeda Iraq War wars Afghanistan War Democrats Iraq weapons nuclear WMDs government George W. Bush Bill Clinton security international affairs Iran Saddam Hussein lying
VIDEO - Meet The Iraq War Architect: Paul Wolfowitz Uses Opportunity On NBC To Re-litigate Iraq Invasion
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:20
NBC's Meet the Press hosted Paul Wolfowitz, one of the discredited architects of the Iraq War, on the 15th anniversary of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Wolfowitz took advantage of the platform to downplay his role in starting the conflict. He also used his appearance on the program to object to statements that President George W. Bush misled America before the war, despite a Senate intelligence report which concluded that the Bush administration made its case for war with statements not supported by the intelligence available at the time.
Wolfowitz, who served in the Bush administration from 2001 through 2005 as Deputy Secretary of Defense, is universally recognized as one of the original architects of the Iraq invasion. He infamously predicted the war reconstruction effort could pay for itself from Iraqi oil revenue (for reference, the cost of the Iraq War is now estimated to be more than $2 trillion), and publicly accused Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein of possessing weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) long after the intelligence community had informed the Pentagon that he did not. Later, Wolfowitz claimed that the conflict was primarily about liberating the Iraqi people rather than confronting the supposed WMD threat, while also making the assertion -- without evidence -- that without the invasion, "we would have had a growing development of Saddam's support for terrorism."
On his September 11 appearance on Meet the Press, Wolfowitz said he rejects the title of ''architect of the Iraq war,'' because he ''was not the commander-in-chief, or even the secretary of state, the secretary of defense, or national security advisor.''
Wolfwowitz also whitewashed President Bush's misleading statements leading up to the war. Wolfowitz said: ''People who say after the fact that Bush lied and got us into a war, he wasn't lying. He was saying what everyone believed'' about Iraq and weapons of mass destruction. Host Chuck Todd responded by asking, ''Who lied? '... Somebody got us into this, and somebody convinced the United States Congress that weapons of mass destruction were imminent in Iraq.''
But instead of asking an Iraq War architect to deflect blame from the administration he served in, Todd could have referenced the Senate Intelligence Committee report that was covered by news outlets when it was released in June 2008. The report found that some statements by President Bush and senior members of the administration about Iraq, terrorist organizations, and weapons of mass destruction were ''contradicted by available intelligence information,'' ''did not accurately convey the intelligence assessments,'' and ''were not substantiated by the intelligence.''
From the June 5, 2008, United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence report, titled Whether Public Statements Regarding Iraq by U.S. Government Officials Were Substantiated by Intelligence Information:
(U) Conclusion 12: Statements and implications by the President and Secretary of State suggesting that Iraq and al-Qa'ida had a partnership, or that Iraq had provided al-Qa'ida with weapons training, were not substantiated by the intelligence.
Intelligence assessments, including multiple CIA reports and the November 2002 NIE [National Intelligence Estimate], dismissed the claim that Iraq and al-Qa'ida were cooperating partners. According to an undisputed INR [State Department Bureau of Intelligence and Research] footnote in the NIE, there was no intelligence information that supported the claim that Iraq would provide weapons of mass destruction to al-Qa'ida. The credibility of the principal intelligence source behind the claim that Iraq had provided al-Qa'ida with biological and chemical weapons training was regularly questioned by DIA [Defense Intelligence Agency], and later by the CIA. The Committee repeats its conclusion from a prior report that "assessments were inconsistent regarding the likelihood that Saddam Hussein provided chemical and biological weapons (CBW) training to al-Qa'ida."
(U) Conclusion 13: Statements in the major speeches analyzed, as well additional statements, regarding Iraq's contacts with al-Qa'ida were substantiated by intelligence information. However, policymakers' statements did not accurately convey the intelligence assessments of the nature of these contacts, and left the impression that the contacts led to substantive Iraqi cooperation or support of al-Qa'ida.
[...]
(U) Conclusion 15: Statements by the President and the Vice President indicating that Saddam Hussein was prepared to give weapons of mass destruction to terrorists groups for attacks against the United States were contradicted by available intelligence information.
The October 2002 National Intelligence Estimate assessed that Saddam Hussein did not have nuclear weapons, and was unwilling to conduct terrorist attacks [sic] the US using conventional, chemical or biological weapons at that time, in part because he feared doing so would give the US a stronger case for war with Iraq. This judgment was echoed by both earlier and later intelligence community assessments. All of these assessments noted that gauging Saddam's intentions was quite difficult, and most suggested that he would be more likely to initiate hostilities if he felt that a US invasion was imminent.
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VIDEO - The Ginsburg Rule: False Advertising By The GOP : NPR
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Then-Supreme Court nominee Ruth Bader Ginsburg greets her husband, Martin, during her confirmation hearing in 1993. She didn't hesitate to answer questions about Roe v. Wade and other topics she considered settled law. John Duricka/AP hide caption
toggle caption John Duricka/AP Then-Supreme Court nominee Ruth Bader Ginsburg greets her husband, Martin, during her confirmation hearing in 1993. She didn't hesitate to answer questions about Roe v. Wade and other topics she considered settled law.
John Duricka/AP With President Trump's nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, GOP senators are singing a constant refrain in anticipation of confirmation hearings. They point to something they call "the Ginsburg rule," contending that at her confirmation hearing, liberal nominee Ruth Bader Ginsburg established a precedent for refusing to answer questions about issues before the Supreme Court.
But that, it turns out, is not really true.
"The woman decides"
It is true that Ginsburg, in her opening statement before the Senate Judiciary Committee, said, as others had before her, that it would be improper for her to give any hints of how she might rule in future cases. Nevertheless, she did answer questions about what she considered settled law, as others have, as well as about her previous decisions as a judge and her extensive legal writing as a lawyer and scholar '-- including her view that the Constitution includes a right to privacy.
As she put it, "the right to determine one's own life decisions," including "the right to marry, the right to procreate or not, the right to raise one's children '-- the degree of justification the state has to have to interfere with that is very considerable."
She didn't shy away from discussing the Supreme Court's 1973 abortion decision, Roe v. Wade, and the court's reaffirmation of Roe's core holding in 1992, a year before her hearings. Asked whether the decision to terminate a pregnancy is a fundamental right for women under the Constitution, Ginsburg noted that in both of the Supreme Court's major abortion decisions, the question was: Who decides?
"In Roe, the answer comes out: the individual in consultation with her physician. There is a somewhat of a big brother figure next to the woman," she said. "I think that the most recent decision, whatever else might be said about it, says the woman decides."
A study in evasiveness
By the time she had finished testifying, Ginsburg had also answered questions about affirmative action, gender discrimination, single-sex education, the limits of congressional powers, even Indian treaties and government funding for the arts. Indeed, a recent study shows that she was among the most responsive nominees ever to appear before the senate Judiciary Committee.
Conversely, Neil Gorsuch, Trump's first nominee, was the least responsive nominee in 50 years, according to the study. The evasiveness titleholder, according to the study, was Justice Abe Fortas, nominated by President Lyndon Johnson to be chief justice in 1968. Pummeled by hostile senators, both Democrat and Republican, Fortas said next to nothing at his confirmation hearing, then saw his nomination filibustered to death. He ultimately was forced to resign from the court in disgrace.
The study of Supreme Court nominee responsiveness was authored by University of Georgia law professor Lori Ringhand, and Paul M. Collins Jr., a professor of legal studies at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. As Ringhand explains it, she and Collins combed through all of the answers in every public Supreme Court confirmation hearing, dating back to the first such hearing in 1939.
They coded two types of responses: If a nominee refused to answer on grounds that the issue might come before the court, that was considered a privileged response based on ethical concerns of not prejudging a specific question. If the nominee firmly answered the question, for instance, as Ginsburg did about abortion, that was coded a firm reply.
Drawing the line
Ginsburg had a relatively high percentage of privileged answers, but that was more than offset by her high percentage of firm answers. Gorsuch, by contrast, had fewer privileged answers, but a near record-setting high number of refusals to give firm answers.
Typical was an exchange with Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., over the Supreme Court's 1954 decision declaring segregation in public schools unconstitutional.
Blumenthal: "Do you agree with the result?"
Gorsuch: "Brown v. Board of Education is a correct application of the law of precedent."
That answer is a total waffle, as Ringhand observes, because the Supreme Court can always overturn precedent. The answer says nothing about whether the Brown decision is settled law, or whether Gorsuch agreed with it. So it didn't count as either a firm answer or a privileged answer in the study.
"Do I really think Gorsuch thinks Brown is on the table? Almost certainly not," said Ringhand. Rather, Gorsuch's strategy was to avoid having to decide which questions to respond to and which ones to refuse. "He was trying to avoid the complicated line-drawing problem by just saying, 'I'm virtually not going to answer anything.' "
And that is particularly galling and problematic for senators, because, as Ringhand observes, "What a nominee agrees to opine on, and what he or she refuses to give an opinion on, does tell us something about what they think is in play as a matter of constitutional law."
In short, it's a signal of what decisions the nominee might be willing to reverse or restrict. And the line-drawing problem may have been "more acute" for Gorsuch, according to Ringhand, because the list of cases he is willing to reconsider may have been larger than he wanted senators to know.
Kavanaugh's paper trail
For Ginsburg, given how much she had written about abortion, it would have been very hard not to answer questions about that subject at her confirmation hearing. And, Ringhand observes, there will be similar issues that Kavanaugh will likely have to address.
"I suspect that Judge Kavanaugh, with his paper trail, will actually give us quite a few firm responses to non-controversial issues that he's written about," she said.
And perhaps even some controversial ones '-- including his one opinion about abortion, and his many legal opinions and other writings about presidential power, national security and his suggestion that presidents should be immune from criminal investigation.
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Hundreds of human feces scattered on this Vancouver grass patch | Daily Hive Vancouver
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 14:26
This is not a sight you would expect immediately across the street from the Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre Hotel in downtown.
But if you look closely into a narrow patch of overgrown grass between the sidewalk and the bike lane on the south side of Helmcken Street between the laneway south of Burrard Street and Hornby Street, you will see excrement.
To be more precise, you will see hundreds of large pieces of what appears to be human poop.
Human poop scattered on the patch of grass on the northwest corner of Hornby Street and Helmcken Street. (Daily Hive)
Daily Hive was tipped off by a health worker at St. Paul's Hospital who uses the sidewalk next to the grass patch on a regular basis to walk between their office and home.
''Human poop looks different than dog poop,'' said the worker who wished to remain anonymous. ''I have heard other people talking about the human poop too, mostly people walking in the area. I have also seen human poop in the garden outside my office and on a park bench that is outside the building, which is not something a dog would do.''
''It's not like I'm counting or keeping track of the quantity, though I have to say this is the most poop -covered stretch of grass I have ever seen, but the accumulation seems to happen overnight.''
According to the worker, this is also a problem for about a two block radius wherever there is some grass, and it has been going on for quite a few months '' especially at this particular location.
It is alleged that the residents of the adjacent Murray Hotel, a single-room occupancy hotel, are responsible for the excrement due to poor washroom conditions within the property.
However, the company that manages the property says their washrooms are all in working order.
''I'm unsure why our tenants would poop outside/in public when they have bathrooms at their disposal,'' said Adam Glover, the general manager of Atira Property Management, this morning. ''Our staff will be checking out the strip of grass you mention below today and will work with the City to sort out what's going on.''
Human poop scattered on the patch of grass on the northwest corner of Hornby Street and Helmcken Street. (Daily Hive)
In an email to Daily Hive, the City of Vancouver says the Murray Hotel was last inspected on August 10, and at the time all of the washroom facilities were ''found to be clean and in operating condition.''
Officials with the municipality will be sending crews to examine and clean-up the area.
''What I can say is that homelessness in Vancouver this year is as bad as I have seen it,'' continued Glover.
''I am currently looking at five tents in Wendy Poole Park and there are tents all over the Downtown Eastside, as well as other parts of the city. I can only imagine this contributes to what folks are seeing downtown.''
According to the World Health Organization, the risk from exposure to human excrement mainly relates to infectious diseases, including E. coli, salmonella, parasites, and various pathogens and viral infections.
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Kenneth Chan
National Features Editor at Daily Hive, the evolution of Vancity Buzz. He covers local architecture, urban issues, politics, business, retail, economic development, transportation and infrastructure, and the travel industry. Kenneth is also a Co-Founder of New Year's Eve Vancouver. Connect with him at kenneth[at]dailyhive.com
Microwave Weapons Are Prime Suspect in Ills of U.S. Embassy Workers - The New York Times
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 14:13
Doctors and scientists say microwave strikes may have caused sonic delusions and very real brain damage among embassy staff and family members.
Image U.S. Marines outside the embassy in Havana in February. Diplomats working here reported strange noises and mysterious symptoms that doctors and scientists say may have resulted from strikes with microwave weapons. Credit Credit Adalberto Roque/Agence France-Presse '-- Getty Images During the Cold War, Washington feared that Moscow was seeking to turn microwave radiation into covert weapons of mind control.
More recently, the American military itself sought to develop microwave arms that could invisibly beam painfully loud booms and even spoken words into people's heads. The aims were to disable attackers and wage psychological warfare.
Now, doctors and scientists say such unconventional weapons may have caused the baffling symptoms and ailments that, starting in late 2016, hit more than three dozen American diplomats and family members in Cuba and China. The Cuban incidents resulted in a diplomatic rupture between Havana and Washington.
Video In 2016, diplomats at the United States Embassy in Havana were mysteriously stricken. Was it an attack? There is no official explanation, but the episode has played a big role in America's current political disengagement with Cuba. Published On April 18, 2018The medical team that examined 21 affected diplomats from Cuba made no mention of microwaves in its detailed report published in JAMA in March. But Douglas H. Smith, the study's lead author and director of the Center for Brain Injury and Repair at the University of Pennsylvania, said in a recent interview that microwaves were now considered a main suspect and that the team was increasingly sure the diplomats had suffered brain injury.
''Everybody was relatively skeptical at first,'' he said, ''and everyone now agrees there's something there.'' Dr. Smith remarked that the diplomats and doctors jokingly refer to the trauma as the immaculate concussion.
Strikes with microwaves, some experts now argue, more plausibly explain reports of painful sounds, ills and traumas than do other possible culprits '-- sonic attacks, viral infections and contagious anxiety.
In particular, a growing number of analysts cite an eerie phenomenon known as the Frey effect, named after Allan H. Frey, an American scientist. Long ago, he found that microwaves can trick the brain into perceiving what seem to be ordinary sounds.
MICROWAVES hitting the head in the area around the temporal lobe were perceived as sound in a 1962 experiment. Several theories have sought to explain the exact mechanism but it remains in dispute.
Cochlea
Eardrum
SOUND WAVES entering the ear make the eardrum vibrate. These vibrations are conveyed to the cochlea and converted into electrical signals. The brain's temporal lobes receive signals from the ears and process them into sounds and speech.
MICROWAVES hitting the head in the area around the temporal lobe were perceived as sound in a 1962 experiment. Several theories have sought to explain the exact mechanism but it remains in dispute.
Cochlea
Eardrum
SOUND WAVES entering the ear make the eardrum vibrate. These vibrations are conveyed to the cochlea and converted into electrical signals. The brain's temporal lobes receive signals from the ears and process them into sounds and speech.
MICROWAVES hitting the head in the area around the temporal lobe were perceived as sound in a 1962 experiment. Several theories have sought to explain the exact mechanism but it remains in dispute.
Cochlea
Eardrum
SOUND WAVES entering the ear make the eardrum vibrate. These vibrations are conveyed to the cochlea and converted into electrical signals. The brain's temporal lobes receive signals from the ears and process them into sounds and speech.
The false sensations, the experts say, may account for a defining symptom of the diplomatic incidents '-- the perception of loud noises, including ringing, buzzing and grinding. Initially, experts cited those symptoms as evidence of stealthy attacks with sonic weapons.
Members of Jason, a secretive group of elite scientists that helps the federal government assess new threats to national security, say it has been scrutinizing the diplomatic mystery this summer and weighing possible explanations, including microwaves.
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Asked about the microwave theory of the case, the State Department said the investigation had yet to identify the cause or source of the attacks. And the F.B.I. declined to comment on the status of the investigation or any theories.
The microwave idea teems with unanswered questions. Who fired the beams? The Russian government? The Cuban government? A rogue Cuban faction sympathetic to Moscow? And, if so, where did the attackers get the unconventional arms?
At his home outside Washington, Mr. Frey, the scientist who uncovered the neural phenomenon, said federal investigators have questioned him on the diplomatic riddle and that microwave radiation is considered a possible cause.
Mr. Frey, now 83, has traveled widely and long served as a contractor and a consultant to a number of federal agencies. He speculated that Cubans aligned with Russia, the nation's longtime ally, might have launched microwave strikes in attempts to undermine developing ties between Cuba and the United States.
''It's a possibility,'' he said at his kitchen table. ''In dictatorships, you often have factions that think nothing of going against the general policy if it suits their needs. I think that's a perfectly viable explanation.''
Developing a new class of weapons
Image Allan H. Frey, at his home outside Washington. In 1960, he stumbled on an acoustic effect of microwaves that was eventually named after him. Credit Alex Wroblewski for The New York Times Microwaves are ubiquitous in modern life. The short radio waves power radars, cook foods, relay messages and link cellphones to antenna towers. They're a form of electromagnetic radiation on the same spectrum as light and X-rays, only at the opposite end.
While radio broadcasting can employ waves a mile or more in length, microwaves range in size from roughly a foot to a tiny fraction of an inch. They're seen as harmless in such everyday uses as microwaving foods. But their diminutive size also enables tight focusing, as when dish antennas turn disorganized rays into concentrated beams.
The dimensions of the human head, scientists say, make it a fairly good antenna for picking up microwave signals.
Mr. Frey, a biologist, said he stumbled on the acoustic effect in 1960 while working for General Electric's Advanced Electronics Center at Cornell University. A man who measured radar signals at a nearby G.E. facility came up to him at a meeting and confided that he could hear the beam's pulses '-- zip, zip, zip.
Intrigued, Mr. Frey traveled to the man's workplace in Syracuse and positioned himself in a radar beam. ''Lo,'' he recalled, ''I could hear it, too.''
Mr. Frey's resulting papers '-- reporting that even deaf people could hear the false sounds '-- founded a new field of study on radiation's neural impacts. Mr. Frey's first paper, in 1961, reported that power densities 160 times lower than ''the standard maximum safe level for continuous exposure'' could induce the sonic delusions.
His second paper, in 1962, pinpointed the brain's receptor site as the temporal lobes, which extend beneath the temples. Each lobe bears a small region '-- the auditory cortex '-- that processes nerve signals from the outer and inner ears.
Investigators raced to confirm and extend Mr. Frey's findings. At first they named the phenomenon after him, but eventually called it the microwave auditory effect and, in time, more generally, radio-frequency hearing.
The Soviets took notice. Not long after his initial discoveries, Mr. Frey said, he was invited by the Soviet Academy of Sciences to visit and lecture. Toward the end, in a surprise, he was taken outside Moscow to a military base surrounded by armed guards and barbed-wire fences.
''They had me visiting the various labs and discussing the problems,'' including the neural impacts of microwaves, Mr. Frey recalled. ''I got an inside look at their classified program.''
Moscow was so intrigued by the prospect of mind control that it adopted a special terminology for the overall class of envisioned arms, calling them psychophysical and psychotronic.
Soviet research on microwaves for ''internal sound perception,'' the Defense Intelligence Agency warned in 1976, showed great promise for ''disrupting the behavior patterns of military or diplomatic personnel.''
Furtively, globally, the threat grew.
The National Security Agency gave Mark S. Zaid, a Washington lawyer who routinely gets security clearances to discuss classified matters, a statement on how a foreign power built a weapon ''designed to bathe a target's living quarters in microwaves, causing numerous physical effects, including a damaged nervous system.''
Mr. Zaid said a N.S.A. client of his who traveled there watched in disbelief as his nervous system later unraveled, starting with control of his fingers.
Image The high-pitched chirping that diplomats heard while working at the Consulate General of the United States in Guangzhou, China, might be explained by a phenomenon known as the Frey effect '-- radio-frequency hearing. Credit Lam Yik Fei for The New York Times Washington, too, foresaw new kinds of arms.
In Albuquerque, N.M., Air Force scientists sought to beam comprehensible speech into the heads of adversaries. Their novel approach won a patent in 2002, and an update in 2003. Both were assigned to the Air Force secretary, helping limit the idea's dissemination.
The lead inventor said the research team had ''experimentally demonstrated'' that the ''signal is intelligible.'' As for the invention's uses, an Air Force disclosure form listed the first application as ''Psychological Warfare.''
The Navy sought to paralyze. The Frey effect was to induce sounds powerful enough to cause painful discomfort and, if needed, leave targets unable to move. The weapon, the Navy noted, would have a ''low probability of fatalities or permanent injuries.''
In a twist, the 2003 contract was awarded to microwave experts who had emigrated to the United States from Russia and Ukraine.
It is unknown if Washington deploys such arms. But the Pentagon built a related weapon known as the Active Denial System, hailing it in a video. It fires an invisible beam meant to deter mobs and attackers with fiery sensations.
Russia, China and many European states are seen as having the know-how to make basic microwave weapons that can debilitate, sow noise or even kill. Advanced powers, experts say, might accomplish more nuanced aims such as beaming spoken words into people's heads. Only intelligence agencies know which nations actually possess and use such unfamiliar arms.
The basic weapon might look like a satellite dish. In theory, such a device might be hand-held or mounted in a van, car, boat or helicopter. Microwave arms are seen as typically working over relatively short distances '-- across the length of a few rooms or blocks. High-powered ones might be able to fire beams across several football fields, or even for several miles.
The episode in CubaThe Soviet collapse in 1991 cut Russia's main ties to Cuba, a longtime ally just 90 miles from the United States. The shaky economy forced Moscow to stop providing Havana with large amounts of oil and other aid.
Vladimir Putin, as Russia's president and prime minister, sought to recover the economic, political and strategic clout that the Soviets had lost. In December 2000, months after the start of his first presidential term, Mr. Putin flew to the island nation. It was the first visit by a Soviet or Russian leader since the Cold War.
He also sought to resurrect Soviet work on psychoactive arms. In 2012, he declared that Russia would pursue ''new instruments for achieving political and strategic goals,'' including psychophysical weapons.
In July 2014, Mr. Putin again visited Cuba. This time he brought a gift '-- the cancellation of some $30 billion in Cuban debt. The two nations signed a dozen accords.
A Russian spy ship, Viktor Leonov, docked in Havana on the eve of the beginning of reconciliation talks between Cuba and the United States in early 2015, and did so again in subsequent years. Moscow and Havana grew so close that in late 2016, the two nations signed a sweeping pact on defense and technology cooperation.
Image Raul Castro, president of Cuba, with Vladimir Putin, Russia's president, at a welcoming ceremony for Mr. Putin in Havana in 2014. Credit Ismael Francisco/Associated Press Image In Havana's harbor, men fishing near the Russian warship, Viktor, Leonov, in 2015. Credit Ramon Espinosa/Associated Press As a candidate, Donald Trump faulted the Obama administration's normalization policy as ''a very weak agreement'' and threatened to scrap it on reaching the White House. Weeks after he won the election, in late November 2016, the American embassy in Havana found itself battling a mysterious crisis.
Diplomats and their families recounted high-pitched sounds in homes and hotel rooms at times intense enough to incapacitate. Long-term, the symptoms included nausea, crushing headaches, fatigue, dizziness, sleep problems and hearing loss.
The State Department filed diplomatic protests, and the Cuban government denied involvement. In May, the F.B.I. opened an investigation and its agents began visiting Havana a half year after the incidents began. The last major one hit that summer, in August, giving the agents relatively little time to gather clues.
In September 2017, the Trump administration warned travelers away from Cuba and ordered home roughly half the diplomatic personnel.
Rex W. Tillerson, who was then the secretary of state, said the embassy's staff had been targeted deliberately. But he refrained from blaming Cuba, and federal officials held out the possibility that a third party may have been responsible.
In early October, President Trump expelled 15 Cuban diplomats, producing a chill between the nations. Administration critics said the White House was using the health issue as a pretext to end President Barack Obama's reconciliation policy.
The day after the expulsions, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a closed, top secret hearing on the Cuba situation. Three State Department officials testified, as did an unnamed senior official of the Central Intelligence Agency.
The Hypothesis Image Beatrice A. Golomb, a medical doctor and professor of medicine at the University of California, San Diego, here in a beachside office, argues that microwave strikes can explain the diplomatic ills. Credit Tara Pixley for The New York Times Early this year, in January, the spooky impact of microwaves on the human brain never came up during an open Senate hearing on the Cuba crisis.
But in a scientific paper that same month, James C. Lin of the University of Illinois, a leading investigator of the Frey effect, described the diplomatic ills as plausibly arising from microwave beams. Dr. Lin is the editor-in-chief of Bio Electro Magnetics, a peer-reviewed journal that explores the effects of radio waves and electromagnetic fields on living things.
In his paper, he said high-intensity beams of microwaves could have caused the diplomats to experience not just loud noises but nausea, headaches and vertigo, as well as possible brain-tissue injury. The beams, he added, could be fired covertly, hitting ''only the intended target.''
In February, ProPublica in a lengthy investigation mentioned that federal investigators were weighing the microwave theory. Separately, it told of an intriguing find. The wife of a member of the embassy staff, it reported, had looked outside her home after hearing the disturbing sounds and seen a van speeding away.
A dish antenna could fit easily into a small van.
The medical team that studied the Cuba diplomats ascribed the symptoms in the March JAMA study to ''an unknown energy source'' that was highly directional. Some personnel, it noted, had covered their ears and heads but experienced no sound reduction. The team said the diplomats appeared to have developed signs of concussion without having received any blows to the head.
In May, reports emerged that American diplomats in China had suffered similar traumas. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called the medical details of the two groups "very similar'' and ''entirely consistent" with one another. By late June, the State Department had evacuated at least 11 Americans from China.
To date, the most detailed medical case for microwave strikes has been made by Beatrice A. Golomb, a medical doctor and professor of medicine at the University of California, San Diego. In a forthcoming paper to be published in October in Neural Computation, a peer-reviewed journal of the MIT Press, she lays out potential medical evidence for Cuban microwave strikes.
She compared the symptoms of the diplomats in Cuba to those reported for individuals said to be suffering from radio-frequency sickness. The health responses of the two groups, Dr. Golomb wrote, ''conform closely.''
In closing, she argued that ''numerous highly specific features'' of the diplomatic incidents ''fit the hypothesis'' of a microwave attack, including the Frey-type production of disturbing sounds.
Scientists still disagree over what hit the diplomats. Last month, JAMA ran four letters critical of the March study, some faulting the report for ruling out mass hysteria.
But Mr. Zaid, the Washington lawyer, who represents eight of the diplomats and family members, said microwave attacks may have injured his clients.
''It's sort of na¯ve to think this just started now,'' he said. Globally, he added, covert strikes with the potent beams appear to have been going on for decades.
Francisco Palmieri, a State Department official, was asked during the open Senate hearing if ''attacks against U.S. personnel in Cuba'' had been raised with Moscow.
''That is a very good question,'' Mr. Palmieri replied. But addressing it, he added, would require ''a classified setting.''
For his part, Mr. Frey says he doubts the case will be solved anytime soon. The novelty of the crisis, its sporadic nature and the foreign setting made it hard for federal investigators to gather clues and draw conclusions, he said, much less file charges.
''Based on what I know,'' he remarked, ''it will remain a mystery.''
William J. Broad is a science journalist and senior writer. He joined The Times in 1983, and has shared two Pulitzer Prizes with his colleagues, as well as an Emmy Award and a DuPont Award. @ WilliamJBroad
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College or $70,000 a year? Aviation industry scrambles for mechanics
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 14:12
Leslie Josephs | CNBC
Thomas Maharis of Queens recently started working for Delta, repairing the airline's cabins, at a starting rate of about $25 an hour.
The aviation industry needs to hire thousands of more people like Thomas Maharis.
Maharis, recent high school graduate who lives with his family in the Howard Beach section of Queens, is earning $25 an hour as an entry-level aircraft technician. In four overnight shifts a week at nearby John F. Kennedy International Airport, Maharis, 19, repairs aircraft cabins after planes are done flying for the day for Delta Air Lines, where he started working in June.
One recent task: Cutting out a fabric eye mask that got stuck in a seat track. His assignments vary, depending on what breaks, or how rough passengers are with the aircraft. "There's plenty of stuff people do to the vents," he said.
Airlines, manufacturers of airplanes like Boeing and aircraft engine-makers such as General Electric, are racing to ensure a pipeline of technicians to fix and maintain their aircraft as a wave of current employees approach retirement.
In July, Boeing, the world's largest aircraft manufacturer, forecast that the aviation industry will need 754,000 new aircraft technicians over the next two decades, more than 80 percent of them for the growing commercial aviation sector.
That crunch comes amid a wave of retirements that's sweeping other corners of the industry like pilots.
About 30 percent of aircraft mechanics are at or near retirement age and they're retiring faster than they're being replaced, the Aviation Technician Education Council, said in December. The average age of a mechanic is 51. More than a quarter are older than 64 years.
The next generationAfter a couple of years of experience, Maharis can earn $35 an hour fixing the body of the airplane, which works out to about $72,000 a year. The median annual U.S. household income in 2016 was $59,039, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Maharis grew up flying remote-controlled airplanes and said he knew from childhood that he wanted to work in aviation. He said he's considering going to college online but is so far holding off.
Maharis is a graduate of Aviation High School in the Long Island City section of Queens. The school has been training students to become aircraft mechanics since the 1930s, and puts students on track to receive licenses required by the Federal Aviation Administration to fix engines and airframes. Some students stay on for a fifth year.
At their graduation ceremony students don't wear traditional mortarboards and tassels. Instead they wear dark blue pants and light blue button-down shirts, similar to a mechanics uniform. Since they don't wear mortar boards, they threw paper airplanes in the air as the principal presented the class of 2018.
Students have a grueling schedule because of the additional training. Some students even travel out to JFK to practice on a donated Boeing 727 aircraft, once operated by FedEx.
"We are probably the only students in New York City who get upset on snow days," salutatorian Genesis Santana told the crowd at the graduation ceremony, held at sunset at the high school's hangar. "Hashtag: Shop is life."
College still rulesCompanies are laying plans to refill pipelines as demand for airliners, and the constant fixes they require, are growing. Maharis, who graduated in 2017, is an outlier at the biggest public aviation high school in the country, as 80 percent of students go on to college, the traditional path even as crippling student debt continues to grow.
"They have been hearing the word 'college' their whole lives," said Aviation High School's principal, Steven Jackson.
Irwin Perdomo took two buses and a subway to get to school every day. He just graduated in June but wants to go to college and study aviation law so he can earn more when he enters the field.
"I need to finish my education," he said.
Jackson said more students are taking and passing their qualifying exams for FAA licenses, however, a sign of increased interest in a job in the field. In the past academic year about 55 percent of the pool of 600 students qualified, up from around 40 percent in the 2016-17 academic year.
Recent graduates from the high school were hired by Panasonic and JetBlue Airways, whose headquarters is a short walk from the school. Hundreds of JetBlue mechanics and technicians have graduated from Aviation High School and the New York-based airline operates a mechanics' one-year apprentice program with full-time benefits. Throughout the year, these individuals work on JetBlue's aircraft at hangars in New York and Boston and are promoted, if successful, to technician upon completion, said spokeswoman Tamara Young.
In late July, Delta said it would provide $350,000 in grants to nine aviation schools around the country, including Aviation High School. The airline plans to hire 2,000 mechanics over the next decade to cover retirements, said spokesman Drake Castaneda.
Leslie Josephs | CNBC
Students from Aviation High School in Queens learn how to repair and maintain planes using an old FedEx Boeing 727 jet at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens.
Not just airplanesOther industries are also turning to the school for a pipeline of workers, including the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which runs New York's subway and commuter rail, and even a Queens company that makes hot-water boilers, said Jackson.
In another part of the country, General Electric, whose jet engines are among the world's most popular, is scrambling to staff a plant in Lafayette, Indiana, to keep up with demand for airliners around the world. Some of its models are sold out through the middle of the next decade. Last year, some 400 engines came out of the factory, but it wants to ramp that pace to 1,800 in 2019.
For the first time, GE recruiters went to the Oshkosh, Wisconsin, air show in July to recruit for the plant in Lafayette. They need mechanics that are licensed by the FAA to work on engines, often a similar pool of candidates in which airlines are competing.
Starting salaries are close to $27 an hour, and human resources manager Jamin Gallman says that can get up to $37 an hour within four years. He's touting the low cost of living in Indiana to get recruits in the door.
"Some people are saying 'I want to work, perfect I'll take it.' Others will say 'I'm graduating school,'" he said, adding that about 30 percent of applicants are hired.
Interpersonal skills are important, and workers are divided into small self-directed groups of 15-20.
"You can teach the technical skills over time. You can't teach someone ... to be a team player."
RAHM FOR PREZ? Chicago Mayor Announces He WON'T Run For Re-Election | Daily Wire
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 14:05
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced Tuesday that he will not seek a third term, shocking the Chicago political establishment.
With his wife by his side, Emanuel told reporters that while he found being Chicago's mayor the "job of a lifetime," unlike previous mayors he does not want to make it the only job of his lifetime.
''I've decided not to seek re-election,'' Emanuel said. "This has been the job of a lifetime, but it is not a job for a lifetime.''
The Chicago Tribune calls the decision a "dramatic reversal," and it is: Emanuel had already begun campaigning for his third term as mayor, kicking off a petition drive over the Labor Day weekend. He also has $10 million in a campaign bank account, the result of a fundraising blitz that began late last year.
But Rahm is not beloved. City reformers say the mayor has done a miserable job of cleaning up the city, improving the city's finances, and handling a crime wave that saw more than 200 people shot in the month of August alone. He's raised property taxes to cover the city's building debt, and argued with state government over whether Chicago should take responsibility for its miserable financial situation.
He's also not a darling of the far-Left. Rahm's administration presided over a botched investigation into racism and a lack of accountability within the police department, and battled with the Chicago Teachers Union for control of the city's education system.
Chicago isn't likely to move on to bigger and better things, though; Emanuel's only real challenger in the last election was from the Left '-- a true socialist '-- and the competitors for Emanuel's mayoral title won't be much better.
The decision does clear the way for Emanuel to take on another role, though: presidential candidate. He already has a head start, with solid fundraising numbers, and the assured backing of former President Barack Obama, Emanuel's last boss. He has plenty of time to improve his public relations.
Emanuel will officially leave office in 2019.
CBS Reality Chief Jennifer Bresnan to Depart | Hollywood Reporter
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 13:51
11:00 AM PDT 8/1/2013 by Lacey Rose
Cliff Lipson/CW
Jennifer Bresnan
At the end of the summer, Bresnan will relocate to New York, where her husband, CBS Corp. COO Joe Ianniello, and family live.CBS' longtime reality chief is stepping down.
The departure of Jennifer Bresnan, who has led the network's alternative programming since 2008, comes some two months after rival Fox announced its reality chief Mike Darnell would exit. Bresnan is set to relocate to New York, where her husband, CBS Corp. COO Joe Ianniello, and family live. She'll step down from her day-to-day role in the department at the summer's end, but will continue to consult on CBS' unscripted series.STORY: CBS' Leslie Moonves: We Are Not the 'Bastard Step-Child' of the Industry
''Jen has been an outstanding leader of this department, with tremendous passion for the genre and creative energy for our shows. She launched the most successful new network reality show in years with Undercover Boss, and has worked closely with our producers to keep Survivor, The Amazing Race and Big Brother at the top of their game -- three popular, long-running franchises that continue to play an important role in the network's ratings leadership," CBS Entertainment president Nina Tassler said in a statement confirming the news Thursday.
Added Bresnan: ''I am so grateful to Leslie Moonves and Nina Tassler for bringing me into the CBS family and for their remarkable support. It has been an incredible honor to work with the strongest reality brands in the business, and I have the deepest respect for my team and all the producers whose passion keeps these shows thriving. It's easier stepping down when it's not goodbye, just a different location, and I am very excited to begin a new chapter of my life on the East Coast.''
The news comes at a particularly challenging time for the network reality business, as evidenced by the lack of new hits outside of NBC's The Voice in recent years. (Though CBS' long-running series still draw significant numbers, the network hasn't launched a new juggernaut since Boss in 2010.) While broadcast continues to take shots with shiny-floor, tentpole programming, the bulk of the genre's buzz of late has come out of cable -- see A&E's Ducky Dynasty -- where ratings expectations are considerably lower.
German media admits: Man who made Hitler salute at Chemnitz rally is actually a Leftist infiltrator
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 13:40
It has long been charged that Antifa operatives enter the crowds of pro-freedom rallies and say and do things in order to discredit those rallies. In the protests in Chemnitz against mass Muslim migration, this man made a Hitler salute, which was picked up by the international media as proof that the rallies were full of neo-Nazis. But this man has now been unmasked as a supporter of the Red Army Faction, a Communist terrorist group. Even the German media is admitting it. But it is unlikely there will follow any retractions from the media outside the country, which is too invested in the mass migration imperative to take notice of inconvenient facts.
''A sensation! Media admit: The Hitler salute man of Chemnitz is a 'Red Army Faction' sympathizer,'' Searchlight Germany, September 6, 2018:
'...Now it has been proven: The man who made the headlines with the Hitler salute at the Chemnitz demonstration and discredited the entire protest is a RAF sympathizer '' and thus quite obviously a left-wing extremist. He carries the abbreviation of the terrorist group on the back of his right hand. This is obviously not a right-wing extremist. The rumours of infiltrated provocateurs are thus receiving new confirmation. At first, the RAF logo on the hand was described by the mainstream media as a photomontage created by right-wing extremists. This has now turned out to be wrong. The editorial offices of ''Rheinischer Post'' and ''T-Online'' apologize today for this mistake and make it clear: The picture is real and not a fake! Thus it is obvious that the man with the raised right arm is an admirer of the left-wing terrorist ''Red Army Faction''. This fits badly with the world view of a neo-Nazis. And it raises the question of what is really behind the Hitler salute action. It was striking from the very beginning that the man with the hooded sweater separated himself from the other demonstrators and posed in front of the photographers with the Hitler salute. It also remained a mystery why policemen in combat uniforms did not arrest the man. Was there perhaps a reference to allowing the man to do so? Finally, he provided the pictures journalists needed to defame the protest of Monday the 27th of August as a neo-Nazi demonstration. A group of 10,000 people, mainly a cross-section of the Chemitz [sic] population, had taken part. So far it is not clear who this man is. The police say it is ''irrelevant'' to them whether the man is a right-wing or a left-wing man. It is crucial that the gesture is punishable. So no clarification can be expected from this side. However, it has been finally cleared up that the report that the RAF tattoo is a fake is not true. T-Online admits: ''We called a photo of one of the Hitler salute hands a photomontage. That's wrong. After we checked the present material as well as further photographs again more exactly, we came to the conclusion: On the hand of the demonstrator pictured, the characters 'RAF' can actually be seen.''And the newspaper ''Rheinische Post'' writes: ''In an earlier version of the article it was said that a RAF tattoo on the hand of an alleged right-wing extremist demonstrator had turned out to be a photomontage. We have referred to research by the online portal watson.de. In the meantime, however, the portal has corrected his report: The man had indeed carried such a tattoo on his hand. We regret the misrepresentation and have removed the passage from our article as well.'''...
Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos Gives $10 Million to Super PAC in First Major Political Contribution - WSJ
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 13:21
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and his wife are making their first major foray into politics with a $10 million contribution to a super PAC that aims to elect military veterans to Congress.
The contribution introduces Mr. Bezos, who also owns the Washington Post, to a class of political megadonors that includes Las Vegas casino magnate Sheldon Adelson and California billionaire Tom Steyer, who have each poured more than $100 million into elections over the past decade.
But unlike with Messrs. Adelson and Steyer, the Bezos contribution isn't to a partisan political organization. Instead it is to With Honor Fund, a year-old super PAC that backs veterans of both major parties who are running for House seats. Federal Election Commission filings show the organization had raised $7 million between its launch last October and the end of July.
Rye Barcott, the founder of With Honor Fund, said the Bezoses shared his group's goal of building a ''cross-partisan coalition'' of House members willing to work with the other party.
''They perceive themselves to be pretty nonpartisan,'' Mr. Barcott said. ''The idea of doing something different and disruptive appealed to them, along with our focus on values and integrity in our national discourse.''
A Bezos spokesman confirmed the contribution and said the Amazon chief executive and his wife, MacKenzie, declined to comment.
With Honor Fund is backing 33 House candidates now running'--19 Democrats and 14 Republicans. Mr. Barcott said the PAC does ''no screening for ideology,'' but rather seeks out a ''common bond of service and commitment to the country.''
In a New Hampshire House race, With Honor's ads backing Democrat Maura Sullivan show President Trump's face as it says she will back ''affordable health care...no matter who stands in the way.''
But in an ad for Michael Waltz, the GOP nominee for a House seat in northeast Florida, With Honor says Mr. Waltz will ''work with President Trump to fight for Florida's conservative values.''
Mr. Barcott said With Honor Fund backs candidates who agree to its three-point pledge, which calls for integrity, civility and courage.
Other major With Honor contributors include Leslie Wexner, the CEO of the company that owns Victoria's Secret, and his wife, Abigail Wexner, who gave a combined $2.8 million. Mr. Bezos's parents gave the super PAC $2 million.
Mr. Bezos, whom Forbes magazine in March ranked as the world's richest man with a net worth of more than $150 billion, has to this point not been an active campaign donor.
FEC data shows that since 2007 the couple has given $52,600 to federal candidates'--$31,000 of that went to Democrats and $21,600 to Republicans.
They have also given $170,000 to PACs associated with Amazon and Blue Origin, a Bezos-owned aerospace manufacturer.
In Washington state, where the Bezoses live, the couple gave $2.5 million to back a 2012 referendum to legalize same-sex marriage. Beyond that, they have given just $8,400 to state-level candidates.
Mr. Bezos joins a roster of American billionaires who have spent tens of millions of dollars backing candidates.
This year Mr. Adelson and his wife gave $55 million to the super PACs backing House and Senate Republicans. Richard Uihlein, an Illinois shipping magnate, has spent $31 million this year on federal candidates and PACs and millions more on state-level races.
Mr. Steyer, who advocates impeaching Mr. Trump, has spent $30 million so far on Democratic candidates and PACs.
And former New York City Mayor Michael Bloombergsignaled in June that he would spend $80 million to elect Democrats in 2018, but FEC records show he has given just $1 million so far. Bloomberg spokesman Howard Wolfson said Tuesday that Mr. Bloomberg still plans to spend to back Democrats.
Write to Reid J. Epstein at reid.epstein@wsj.com
Donald Trump, Brett Kavanaugh, Theranos: Your Thursday Briefing - The New York Times
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 13:20
Image President Trump sought to assert command on Wednesday after an unsigned Op-Ed in The Times claimed that ''unsung heroes'' in the administration were putting country before president. Credit Credit Doug Mills/The New York Times (Want to get this briefing by email? Here's the sign-up.)
Good morning.
Here's what you need to know:
Who wrote the Op-Ed?' It's the question almost everyone in Washington (and beyond) wants to know.
President Trump erupted in anger on Wednesday after The Times published a stinging Opinion piece by an unidentified senior official saying that a ''quiet resistance'' in the administration was working to thwart the president's ''worst inclinations.'' The article, which said the president's problems were rooted in ''amorality,'' raised questions about his capacity to govern. Read the Op-Ed here.
Mr. Trump denounced the essay, calling it ''gutless,'' and the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, issued a statement about its author saying, ''This coward should do the right thing and resign.''
Washington has been scrambling to identify the anonymous official. This morning, Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo denied writing the piece.
' The Opinion pages of The Times are managed separately from the newsroom. The Op-Ed editor, James Dao, said the material was important enough to merit anonymity, which the department rarely grants.
Listen to 'The Daily': The Anonymous Senior Administration Official The story behind an unsigned Op-Ed that describes a secret effort within the Trump administration to protect the country from the president.But Judge Kavanaugh avoided any blunders that would damage his standing with Republicans. Watch video from the hearing, and catch up on what we learned about his stance on abortion, guns and presidential powers.
' The nominee appears to have a clear path to confirmation by the end of the month. Our politics team will have live coverage when the hearings continue at 9:30 a.m. Eastern.
Tech leaders face questioning ' Regulation of social media is coming. That was one message lawmakers had for Jack Dorsey, Twitter's chief executive, and Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook's chief operating officer, as the two testified on Capitol Hill on Wednesday.
''Congress is going to have to take action here,'' said Senator Mark Warner, Democrat of Virginia, during hearings about the moderation of online content. ''The era of the Wild West in social media is coming to an end.''
' Republicans accused Twitter of being biased against conservatives, a point Mr. Dorsey denied. But he and Ms. Sandberg largely avoided taking sides in highly political debates.
Arrest warrants issued over nerve agent attack' Britain has charged two Russian intelligence officers with attempted murder after the poisoning in March of a former Russian spy and his daughter in England.
Prime Minister Theresa May announced that British intelligence services had identified the men, who used the names Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, as officers of Russia's military intelligence service. ''We decisively reject these insinuations,'' Russian officials responded.
' British investigators described a needle-in-a-haystack investigation involving more than 11,000 hours of video from ports, train stations, shop windows, car dashboards and roads.
Business' Theranos, the Silicon Valley start-up that pledged to revolutionize lab testing to detect diseases, is shutting down.
' Warner Brothers and its corporate siblings, HBO and Turner Broadcasting, introduced plans to increase the number of women and people of color involved in their movies and TV shows.
' Nike's first ad featuring Colin Kaepernick, the former N.F.L. quarterback who led player protests, is set to run tonight on NBC during the league's first regular season game.
' U.S. stocks were mixed on Wednesday. Here's a snapshot of global markets today.
Smarter LivingTips for a more fulfilling life.
' Make your iPhone photographs even more beautiful.
' Here's how to break the taboo on talking about money.
' Recipe of the day: Roy Choi's carne asada is perfect for taco night.
Image A creative take on a venerable classic. Credit Marcus Nilsson for The New York Times; Food stylist: Brian Preston-Campbell. Prop stylist: Angharad Bailey. Image Indian activists celebrating today after the Supreme Court struck down a colonial-era law against gay sex. Credit Divyakant Solanki/EPA, via Shutterstock ' Where has Steve Perry been?
The former Journey frontman who walked away from stardom is returning in October with a solo album, ''Traces,'' that breaks 20 years of silence. He told us about the personal tragedy that moved him to create music again.
Image Finding and losing the love of his life led Steve Perry back to the recording studio after two decades. Credit Brad Ogbonna for The New York Times ' Modeling in the #TimesUp era
New York Fashion Week begins today, and all eyes are on how the industry has adapted after multiple scandals involving sexual assault and harassment. While some attitudes have shifted at the top of the fashion pyramid, change hasn't always trickled down.
Here's more from this week's Style section.
' When teachers are first responders
''Their PTSD can be as serious as what you see in soldiers,'' an expert said of teachers after a school shooting. ''But unlike soldiers, none of them signed up for this, and none of them have been trained to cope with it.'' Our Magazine looks at the suffering of public servants accustomed to placing students' needs above their own.
' U.S. Open builds to a climax
Kei Nishikori and Naomi Osaka became the first Japanese players to reach the semifinals of the same Grand Slam tournament, and Anastasija Sevastova, ''a girl from the middle of nowhere,'' will face Serena Williams in the last four tonight.
Follow our tennis coverage here.
' A new J.R.R. Tolkein book debuts on top
''The Fall of Gondolin,'' written in 1917 and pieced together by the author's son over decades, debuted at No. 1 on our hardcover fiction best-seller list. You can find all of our best-seller lists here.
' Best of late-night TV
Trevor Noah was unswayed by the argument in the anonymous Times Op-Ed that using the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump would be too messy: ''It's like there's a sign that says, 'In case of emergency, break glass,' but then these guys are like, 'I mean, we could break the glass, but then there would be glass everywhere.' ''
' Quotation of the day
''I always tell the kids I love them, even if they're miserable and cursing me out.''
'-- Rachel Harris, a school safety agent in the Bronx who is part of a pilot program to defuse conflicts.
' The Times, in other words
Here's an image of today's front page, and links to our Opinion content and crossword puzzles.
' What we're reading
George Gustines, a senior editor for graphics and video, recommends this Vulture article: ''Abraham Riesman offers a thorough summary and timeline about a very angry segment of the comic-book audience. 'Comicsgate,' he writes, 'is a loose confederation of tweeters and YouTubers who make it their business to yell about how much they hate the ''social justice warriors'' who are, in their eyes, ruining their favorite medium with leftist politics.' ''
Back StoryHours after losing to Chris Evert in the semifinals of the U.S. Open in 1975, Martina Navratilova sat in a secret meeting with F.B.I. agents, where she declared her intention to defect from Czechoslovakia.
''I wanted my freedom,'' Ms. Navratilova told reporters at a news conference on this day 43 years ago. She was 18.
The Czech tennis federation, under the Communist government's rule, had exerted control over its young star's schedule, finances and even her playing style. They had threatened to keep her from that year's U.S. Open, saying she had become too ''Americanized.''
Ms. Navratilova had not yet won any of her 18 Grand Slam singles titles. ''I just felt that if I want to become No. 1, which I want to, that I couldn't do it under the circumstances at home,'' she told reporters.
She became the world No. 1 in 1978, and an American citizen in 1981. Ms. Navratilova was among the first openly gay professional athletes, but she said she waited to become a citizen before coming out, fearing the news might disqualify her.
Ms. Navratilova now has dual citizenship, after regaining her Czech nationality in 2008. By then, she had earned 59 Grand Slam doubles and singles titles.
Aodhan Beirne wrote today's Back Story.
_____
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Franklin D. Roosevelt Supreme Court candidates - Wikipedia
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 12:46
During his twelve years in office, President Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed eight new members of the Supreme Court of the United States: Associate Justices Hugo Black, Stanley F. Reed, Felix Frankfurter, William O. Douglas, Frank Murphy, James F. Byrnes, Robert H. Jackson, and Wiley Blount Rutledge. Additionally, he elevated sitting Justice Harlan Fiske Stone to Chief Justice. Roosevelt's nine nominations filled eight seats on the Supreme Court because Associate Justice Byrnes resigned while Roosevelt was still in office. Roosevelt nominated Rutledge to the seat vacated by Byrnes.
Hugo Black nomination [ edit ] One of Roosevelt's most severe political defeats during his presidency was the failure of the Judiciary Reorganization Bill of 1937, popularly known as the court-packing bill, which sought to stack a hostile Supreme Court in his favor by adding more associate justices.[1] Soon after this setback, however, Roosevelt obtained his first opportunity to appoint a Supreme Court Justice when conservative Willis Van Devanter retired. Roosevelt wanted the replacement to be a "thumping, evangelical New Dealer" who was reasonably young, confirmable by the Senate, and from a region of the country unrepresented on the Court.[2] The three final candidates were Solicitor General Stanley Reed, Indiana Senator Sherman Minton, and Alabama Senator Hugo Black.[3] Roosevelt said Reed "had no fire," and Minton didn't want the appointment at the time.[3] Black was a candidate from the South who as a senator had voted for all twenty-four of Roosevelt's major New Deal programs,[3] and had been an outspoken advocate of the court-packing plan. Roosevelt admired Black's use of the investigative role of the Senate to shape the American mind on reforms, his strong voting record, and his early support, which dated back to 1933.[4]
On August 12, 1937, Roosevelt nominated Black to fill the vacancy. For the first time since 1853, the Senate departed from its tradition, which had been to confirm the appointment of a sitting Senator without debate.[5] Instead, it referred the nomination to the Judiciary Committee.[5] Black was criticized by other senators and Newsweek for his presumed bigotry, his cultural roots, and later when it became public, his Klan membership,[6] but the Committee recommended Black's confirmation by a vote of 13''4 on August 16.[7]
The next day the full Senate considered Black's nomination.[5] Rumors relating to Black's involvement in the Ku Klux Klan surfaced among the senators,[6] and Democratic Senators Royal S. Copeland and Edward R. Burke urged the Senate to defeat the nomination. However, no conclusive evidence of Black's involvement was available at the time, so after six hours of debate, the Senate voted 63''16 to confirm Black;[8] ten Republicans and six Democrats voted against Black.[6] He resigned from the Senate and was sworn in as an Associate Justice two days later; Black would later explain that the haste in resigning was to avoid fallout from his Klan membership potentially going public.[9]
Stanley Reed nomination [ edit ] On January 5, 1938, 78-year-old Associate Justice George Sutherland announced he would retire from the Supreme Court as of January 18. On January 15, 1938, Roosevelt nominated Solicitor General Stanley F. Reed, who had been considered for the previous vacancy. Many in the nation's capital worried about the nomination fight, in light of the difficulty encountered by Hugo Black. However, Reed's nomination was swift and generated little debate in the Senate. He was confirmed on January 25, 1938 by voice vote, and seated as an Associate Justice on January 31.[10] As of 2010, Reed was the last person to serve as a Supreme Court Justice without possessing a law degree.[11]
Felix Frankfurter nomination [ edit ] Following the death of Supreme Court Justice Benjamin N. Cardozo in July 1938, President Franklin D. Roosevelt asked his old friend Felix Frankfurter for recommendations of prospective candidates for the vacancy. Finding none on the list to suit his criteria, Roosevelt nominated Frankfurter himself on January 5, 1939.[12] Frankfurter was confirmed by the United States Senate on January 17, 1939 by voice vote.[8]
William O. Douglas nomination [ edit ] In 1939, Justice Louis D. Brandeis resigned from the Supreme Court, and Roosevelt nominated Douglas as his replacement on March 20, 1939.[13] Douglas later revealed that this had been a great surprise to him'--Roosevelt had summoned him to an "important meeting," and Douglas feared that he was to be named as the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. He was confirmed by the United States Senate on April 4 by a vote of 62 to 4. The four negative votes were cast by four Republicans: Lynn J. Frazier, Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., Gerald P. Nye, and Clyde M. Reed. Douglas was sworn into office on April 17, 1939.
Frank Murphy nomination [ edit ] Justice Pierce Butler died in 1939, creating the next vacancy on the Court. Butler was a Catholic, and held a seat traditionally filled by a Catholic justice. On January 4, 1940, Roosevelt maintained the tradition of a Catholic seat when he nominated Frank Murphy. Murphy was confirmed by the United States Senate on January 16, 1940 by voice vote.[8]
Harlan Fiske Stone, James Byrnes, and Robert H. Jackson nominations [ edit ] On January 31, 1941, James Clark McReynolds, soon to be 80 years old, stepped down from the Court, followed within a few months by the retirement of Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes, also nearly 80. On June 12, 1941, Roosevelt nominated Associate Justice Harlan Fiske Stone to be Chief Justice. That same day, Roosevelt also nominated James F. Byrnes, and Robert H. Jackson to the Court, with Byrnes to succeed McReynolds and Jackson to fill the Associate Justice seat to be vacated be the elevation of Stone. Byrnes was confirmed by the United States Senate on the same day by voice vote.[8] Stone was confirmed on June 27, 1941 and Jackson on July 7, 1941, both also by voice vote.[8]
Wiley Blount Rutledge nomination [ edit ] Byrnes only served on the Court for a year and a half, resigning at Roosevelt's behest to head the powerful Office of Economic Stabilization. On January 11, 1943, Roosevelt nominated Wiley Blount Rutledge to fill the vacancy. Rutledge was confirmed by the United States Senate on February 8, 1943 by voice vote.[8]
Names mentioned [ edit ] Following is a list of individuals who were mentioned in various news accounts and books as having been considered by Roosevelt for a Supreme Court appointment:
United States Supreme Court (elevation to Chief Justice) [ edit ] Harlan Fiske Stone (born 1872) (Nominated and Confirmed)[8]United States Courts of Appeals [ edit ]
Court of Appeals for the Third CircuitHerbert F. Goodrich (born 1879)[14]Court of Appeals for the Fifth CircuitJoseph C. Hutcheson, Jr. (born 1879)[15]Samuel H. Sibley (born 1873)[15]Court of Appeals for the Tenth CircuitSam G. Bratton (born 1888)[15]Court of Appeals for the D.C. CircuitWiley Blount Rutledge (born 1894) (Nominated and Confirmed)[8]State Supreme Courts [ edit ] Walter P. Stacy (born 1885) - Chief Justice, North Carolina Supreme Court[15][16][17]Executive Branch officials [ edit ] Homer S. Cummings (born 1870) - United States Attorney General[15]William O. Douglas (born 1898) - Chairman, Securities and Exchange Commission (Nominated and Confirmed)[8]Robert H. Jackson (born 1892) - United States Attorney General (Nominated and Confirmed)[8]Frank Murphy (born 1890) - United States Attorney General (Nominated and Confirmed)[8]Stanley F. Reed (born 1884) - United States Solicitor General (Nominated and Confirmed)[8]United States Senators [ edit ] Hugo L. Black (born 1886) - Senator from Alabama (Nominated and Confirmed)[8]James F. Byrnes (born 1882) - Senator from South Carolina (Nominated and Confirmed)[8]Hiram W. Johnson (born 1866) - Senator from California; former Governor of California[16]Sherman Minton (born 1890) - Senator from Indiana (Nominated by Harry S. Truman in 1949 and Confirmed)[3]Joseph T. Robinson (born 1872) - Senator from Arkansas (died in 1937)[18]Academics [ edit ] Felix Frankfurter (born 1882) - Professor, Harvard Law School (Nominated and Confirmed)[8]See also [ edit ] United States federal judgeFederal judicial appointment historyReferences [ edit ] ^ Ball, Howard. Hugo L. Black: Cold Steel Warrior. Oxford University Press. 2006. ISBN 0-19-507814-4. Pages 90-91. ^ Ball, Howard. Hugo L. Black: Cold Steel Warrior. Oxford University Press. 2006. ISBN 0-19-507814-4. Page 90. ^ a b c d Ball, Howard. Hugo L. Black: Cold Steel Warrior. Oxford University Press. 2006. ISBN 0-19-507814-4. Page 91. ^ Ball, Howard. Hugo L. Black: Cold Steel Warrior. Oxford University Press. 2006. ISBN 0-19-507814-4. Page 92. ^ a b c Ball, Howard. Hugo L. Black: Cold Steel Warrior. Oxford University Press. 2006. ISBN 0-19-507814-4. Page 94. ^ a b c Ball, Howard. Hugo L. Black: Cold Steel Warrior. Oxford University Press. 2006. ISBN 0-19-507814-4. Pages 94-95. ^ Van Der Veer, Virginia. "Hugo Black and the KKK." ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Supreme Court Nominations, 1789-present, senate.gov. ^ Ball, Howard. Hugo L. Black: Cold Steel Warrior. Oxford University Press. 2006. ISBN 0-19-507814-4. Page 95. ^ Wood, "Sutherland Quits Supreme Court," New York Times, January 6, 1938; "Stanley Reed Goes to Supreme Court," New York Times, January 16, 1938; "Jackson Is Named Solicitor General," New York Times, January 28, 1938; "High Court Holds Challenge of NLRB Must Await Board Order Against Company," New York Times, February 1, 1938. ^ "Senate Quickly Confirms Reed Nomination," New York Times, January 26, 1938. ^ Irons 1999, pp. 327''8 ^ Christopher L. Tomlins (2005). The United States Supreme Court. Houghton Mifflin. pp. 475''476 . Retrieved 2008-10-21 . ^ Newman, Roger K. Hugo Black: A Biography. Fordham University Press. p. 338. ISBN 978-0-8232-1786-1. ^ a b c d e Newman, Roger K. Hugo Black: A Biography. Fordham University Press. pp. 233''234. ISBN 978-0-8232-1786-1. ^ a b JUDICIARY: Oyez, Oyez, Oyez, TIME Magazine (October 15, 1934). ^ Slum Prevention, TIME Magazine (October 10, 1938). ^ Newman, Roger K. Hugo Black: A Biography. Fordham University Press. p. 214. ISBN 978-0-8232-1786-1.
When Franklin Roosevelt Clashed with the Supreme Court '' and Lost | History | Smithsonian
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 12:45
As the first election returns reached his family estate in Hyde Park, New York, on a November night in 1936, Franklin Delano Roosevelt leaned back in his wheelchair, his signature cigarette holder at a cocky angle, blew a smoke ring and cried ''Wow!'' His huge margin in New Haven signaled that he was being swept into a second term in the White House with the largest popular vote in history at the time and the best showing in the electoral college since James Monroe ran unopposed in 1820.
The outpouring of millions of ballots for the Democratic ticket reflected the enormous admiration for what FDR had achieved in less than four years. He had been inaugurated in March 1933 during perilous times'--one-third of the workforce jobless, industry all but paralyzed, farmers desperate, most of the banks shut down'--and in his first 100 days he had put through a series of measures that lifted the nation's spirits. In 1933 workers and businessmen marched in spectacular parades to demonstrate their support for the National Recovery Administration (NRA), Roosevelt's agency for industrial mobilization, symbolized by its emblem, the blue eagle. Farmers were grateful for government subsidies dispensed by the newly created Agricultural Adjustment Administration (AAA).
Over the ensuing three years, the cavalcade of alphabet agencies had continued: SEC (the Securities and Exchange Commission); REA (the Rural Electrification Administration) and a good many more. The NYA (National Youth Administration) had permitted college students, such as the future playwright Arthur Miller, to work their way through college. The WPA(Works Progress Administration) had sustained millions of Americans, including artists such as Jackson Pollock and writers such as John Cheever. In a second burst of legislation in 1935, Roosevelt had introduced the welfare state to the nation with the Social Security Act, legislating old-age pensions and unemployment insurance. During the 1936 campaign, the president's motorcade, mobbed by well-wishers wherever he traveled, had to inch along the streets in towns and cities across the nation. His landslide victory that year signified the people's verdict on the New Deal. Franklin D. Roosevelt, wrote Arthur Krock, the chief Washington correspondent for the New York Times, had gotten ''the most overwhelming testimonial of approval ever received by a national candidate in the history of the nation.''
The election-night jubilation was tempered, however, by an inescapable fear'--that the U.S. Supreme Court might undo Roosevelt's accomplishments. From the outset of his presidency, FDR had known that four of the justices'--Pierce Butler, James McReynolds, George Sutherland and Willis Van Devanter'--would vote to invalidate almost all of the New Deal. They were referred to in the press as ''the Four Horsemen,'' after the allegorical figures of the Apocalypse associated with death and destruction. In the spring of 1935, a fifth justice, Hoover-appointee Owen Roberts'--at 60 the youngest man on the Supreme Court'--began casting his swing vote with them to create a conservative majority.
During the next year, these five judges, occasionally in concert with others, especially Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes, struck down more significant acts of Congress'--including the two foundation stones, the NRA and the AAA, of Roosevelt's program'--than at any other time in the nation's history, before or since. In May 1935, the court destroyed FDR's plan for industrial recovery when, in a unanimous decision involving a kosher poultry business in Brooklyn, it shot down the blue eagle. Little more than seven months later, in a 6 to 3 ruling, it annihilated his farm program by determining that the Agricultural Adjustment Act was unconstitutional. Most of the federal government's authority over the economy derived from a clause in the Constitution empowering Congress to regulate interstate commerce, but the court construed the clause so narrowly that in another case that next spring, it ruled that not even so vast an industry as coal mining fell within the commerce power.
These decisions drew biting criticism, from inside and outside the court. Justice Harlan Fiske Stone, a Republican who had been Calvin Coolidge's attorney general, denounced Roberts' opinion striking down the farm law as a ''tortured construction of the Constitution.'' Many farmers were incensed. On the night following Roberts' opinion, a passerby in Ames, Iowa, discovered life-size effigies of the six majority opinion justices hanged by the side of a road.
Fury at the court intensified when, in its final action of the term, it handed down a decision in the Tipaldo case. Until that point, defenders of the court had contended that the justices were not opposed to social legislation; the jurists merely wanted such laws to be enacted by the states, not the federal government. But early in June 1936, the court, by 5 to 4, struck down a New York state law providing a minimum wage for women and child workers. Laundry owner Joe Tipaldo, said the court, could continue to exploit female workers in his Brooklyn sweatshop; the state was powerless to stop him. ''If this decision does not outrage the moral sense of the country,'' said Secretary of the Interior Harold Ickes, ''then nothing will.'' And, indeed, people of all political persuasions were incensed. On its editorial page, the Knickerbocker Press, an upstate New York Republican newspaper, asserted, ''The law that would jail any laundryman for having an underfed horse should jail him for having an underfed girl employee.''
The Tipaldo ruling persuaded Roosevelt that he had to act, and act quickly, to curb the court. As he told the press, the court had created a '' 'no-man's-land' where no Government'-- State or Federal'--can function.'' He had been waiting patiently for popular dissatisfaction with the court to mount; now anger at the Tipaldo decision surged. That ruling, the historian Alpheus T. Mason later wrote, ''convinced even the most reverent that five stubborn old men had planted themselves squarely in the path of progress.'' The president recognized, however, that he must tread carefully, for despite widespread disgruntlement, most Americans believed the Supreme Court sacrosanct. When, in 1935, FDR had criticized it for adopting a ''horse-and-buggy definition of interstate commerce,'' editorial writers had lashed out at him. Thereafter, the president had said little, even as he quietly heeded the counsel of his attorney general, Homer Cummings, who told him, ''Mr. President, they mean to destroy us. . . . We will have to find a way to get rid of the present membership of the Supreme Court.'' With Roosevelt's encouragement, Cummings sought to come up with a workable plan to ensure a more favorable response to the New Deal from the court. These explorations proceeded stealthily; the president never mentioned the court during his campaign for reelection.
Roosevelt, however, had concluded that he could not avoid a confrontation with the court; it had already torpedoed the two principal recovery projects of his first term. It would soon rule on the Social Security Act and the National Labor Relations Act (the Wagner Act), regarded by the administration as a factory workers' Magna Carta. Legal analysts anticipated that the court would strike down both laws. In Tipaldo, it had gone so far as to say that the state was ''without power by any form of legislation'' to modify labor contracts between employers and women workers. Roosevelt surmised that he would be unable to take advantage of his landslide to sponsor new measures, such as a wagesand- hours law, because that legislation, too, would be invalidated.
In the days following the 1936 election, FDR and Cummings put the final touches on an audacious plan to reconfigure the court. Dissents by Stone and other justices, notably Louis Brandeis and Benjamin Cardozo, persuaded Roosevelt that he need not undertake the arduous route of a constitutional amendment, for it was not the Constitution that required changing but the composition of the bench. Naming a few more judges like Stone, the president believed, would do the trick. FDR recognized, though, that a direct assault on the court must be avoided; he could not simply assert that he wanted judges who would do his bidding. The most promising approach, it seemed, would be to capitalize on the public's concern about the ages of the justices. At the time of his reelection, it was the most elderly court in the nation's history, averaging 71 years. Six of the justices were 70 or older; a scurrilous book on the court, The Nine Old Men, by Drew Pearson and Robert Allen, was rapidly moving up the bestseller lists.
But Roosevelt kept Congressional leaders, his cabinet (save for Cummings) and the American people in the dark, deceiving even the shrewdest experts. On January 24, 1937, the editor of the authoritative journal United States Law Week declared that it was ''plain that he does not at the present time have in mind any legislation directed at the Court.'' The Supreme Court itself had no inkling of what was afoot. When the president entertained the judiciary at a White House dinner on February 2, he told adviser Donald Richberg that ''his choice should be whether to take only one cocktail before dinner and have it a very amiable affair, or to have a mimeographed copy of the program laid beside the plate of each justice and then take three cocktails to fortify himself against their reactions.'' The banquet was an amiable affair. But as the evening drew to a close, Idaho's senator William Borah, sensing something as he saw the president chatting with two of the justices, remarked: ''That reminds me of the Roman Emperor who looked around his dinner table and began to laugh when he thought how many of those heads would be rolling on the morrow.''
Three days later, on February 5, 1937, Roosevelt shocked Congress, his closest advisers and the country by unleashing a thunderbolt. He asked Congress to empower him to appoint an additional justice for any member of the court over age 70 who did not retire. He sought to name as many as six additional Supreme Court justices, as well as up to 44 judges to the lower federal courts. He justified his request not by contending that the court's majority was reactionary, but by maintaining that a shortage of judges had resulted in delays to litigants because federal court dockets had become overburdened.
''A part of the problem of obtaining a sufficient number of judges to dispose of cases is the capacity of the judges themselves,'' the president observed. ''This brings forward the question of aged or infirm judges'--a subject of delicacy and yet one which requires frank discussion.'' He acknowledged that ''in exceptional cases,'' some judges ''retain to an advanced age full mental and physical vigor,'' but quickly added, ''Those not so fortunate are often unable to perceive their own infirmities.'' Life tenure, he asserted, ''was not intended to create a static judiciary. Aconstant and systematic addition of younger blood will vitalize the courts.''
Roosevelt's message touched off the greatest struggle in our history among the three branches of government. It also triggered the most intense debate about constitutional issues since the earliest weeks of the Republic. For 168 days, the country was mesmerized by the controversy, which dominated newspaper headlines, radio broadcasts and newsreels, and spurred countless rallies in towns from New England to the PacificCoast. Members of Congress were so deluged by mail that they could not read most of it, let alone respond. Senator Hiram Johnson of California noted, ''I received some hundreds of letters a day, all on the Court'--sometimes some thousands,'' and Senator Royal Copeland of New York, inundated by 30,000 letters and telegrams, begged his constituents to desist. Both sides believed the future of the country was at stake. If Roosevelt won, opponents warned, he would destroy the independence of the judiciary and create an evil precedent for successors who wished to ''pack'' the court. If Roosevelt lost, his supporters countered, a few judges appointed for life would be able to ignore the popular will, destroy programs vital to the welfare of the people, and deny to the president and Congress the powers exercised by every other government in the world. Although the country divided evenly on the issue'--about as many were for Roosevelt's plan as against it'--the opposition drew far more attention, especially on editorial pages.
Despite widely publicized expressions of hostility, political pundits expected the legislation to be enacted. So long were FDR's coattails in the 1936 contest that when the Senate convened in the new year, many Democrats had to sit on the Republican side of the aisle, for every Democratic seat was occupied; the Republicans were left with only 16 members. Roosevelt had high expectations, too, for the House of Representatives, where Democrats held a 4 to 1 advantage. Time magazine reported initially that ''the bill would be passed without serious difficulty.''
That prospect drove opponents of the plan to a fury of activity: protest meetings, bar association resolutions and thousands upon thousands of letters to editors. At a time when totalitarianism was on the march, Roosevelt's foes accused him of mimicking Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin by seeking to concentrate power in the hands of one man. FDR's supporters responded that at a time when democracy was under fire, it was vital to show the world that representative government was not hobbled by judges. That argument, however, was more subtle and harder to explain to the public.
Opponents also objected to FDR's focus on the justices' advanced ages. They saw it as a ruse to conceal his real, and in their eyes, nefarious objective, and as a display of gross disrespect for the elderly. One critic wrote in a letter to the Washington Post: ''Between the ages of 70 and 83, Commodore Vanderbilt added one hundred million dollars to his fortune. . . . At 74 Immanuel Kant wrote his 'Antropology,' the 'Metaphysics of Ethics,' and 'Strife of the Faculties.' . . . Goethe at 80 completed 'Faust.' . . . At 98 Titian painted his historic picture of the 'Battle of Lepanto.' . . . Can you calculate the loss to the world if such as these had been compelled to retire at 70?''
Roosevelt's adversaries took full advantage of the opportunity to advance their case in hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee held in March and April 1937. ''This bill obviously is not playing the game,'' said Professor Erwin Griswold of HarvardLawSchool. ''There are at least two ways of getting rid of judges. One is to take them out and shoot them, as they are reported to do in at least one other country. The other way is more genteel, but no less effective. They are kept on the public payroll but their votes are canceled.'' The most dramatic testimony came from an unexpected participant: the Chief Justice of the United States. In a letter read by the Montana Democratic senator Burton K. Wheeler, Charles Evans Hughes blew gaping holes in the president's claim that the court was behind in its schedule and that additional justices would improve its performance. Instead, he insisted, ''There would be more judges to hear, more judges to confer, more judges to discuss, more judges to be convinced and to decide.''
Yet even after the chief justice's powerful statement, most observers still expected Roosevelt's proposal to be adopted. Time reported in late March that ''the stanchest foes of the President's Plan were privately conceding that, if he chose to whip it through, the necessary votes were already in his pocket.'' Almost no legislator really liked FDR's scheme, but most Democratic senators thought they could not justify to their constituents defying the immensely popular president in order to keep intact a court that had given the country every reason to suppose it would soon strike down cherished new laws, including the Social Security Act.
The court, however, would spring some surprises of its own. On March 29, by 5 to 4, in West Coast Hotel Co. v. Parrish, it validated a minimum wage law from the state of Washington, a statute essentially no different from the New York state act it had struck down only months before. As a result, a hotel in Wenatchee, Washington, would be required to pay back wages to Elsie Parrish, a chambermaid. Two weeks later, in several 5 to 4 rulings, the court sustained the National Labor Relations Act. A tribunal that in 1936 had held that coal mining, although conducted in many states, did not constitute interstate commerce, now gave so broad a reading to the Constitution that it accepted intervention by the federal government in the labor practices of a single Virginia clothing factory. On May 24, the court that in 1935 had declared that Congress, in enacting a pension law, had exceeded its powers, found the Social Security statute constitutional.
This set of decisions came about because one justice, Owen Roberts, switched his vote. Ever since, historians have argued about why he did so. We know that he changed his mind on the validity of minimum wage laws for women before Roosevelt delivered his court-packing message, so FDR's proposal could not have been the proximate cause. Since there is no archival evidence to account for his abrupt change on the minimum wage cases, scholars have been reduced to speculation. Perhaps, during a visit to Roberts' country retreat in Pennsylvania, Chief Justice Hughes had warned his younger colleague that the court was placing itself in jeopardy. Perhaps Roberts was impressed by the dimensions of FDR's landslide, which indicated that the president, not the court's majority, spoke for the nation. Perhaps he was affected by the biting criticism from within the legal community. It is even harder to account for why Roberts, in his subsequent votes in the Wagner Act and Social Security cases, supported such a vast extension of federal power'--but the pressure exerted by the court-packing bill may very likely have been influential.
Roberts' switch had two consequences for Roosevelt, only one of them good. The president could rejoice that his program might now be safe, as indeed it was. Never again would the court strike down a New Deal law. But Roberts' switch'-- and the announcement by Willis Van Devanter, one of the Four Horsemen, that he planned to retire'--seriously undermined support for FDR's court-packing bill. Why, senators asked, continue the fight after the court was rendering the kinds of decisions the president had been hoping for? Or, as one wag put it, ''Why shoot the bridegroom after a shotgun wedding?'' With each new ruling upholding the government, support for the legislation eroded, and by the end of May Roosevelt no longer had the votes needed to enact the measure. Washingtonians regaled one another with a reworking of an old proverb that speedily made the rounds of movers and shakers: ''Aswitch in time saved nine.''
In truth, the jest was a mite too clever, for the struggle had not yet ended, but after Robert's switch Roosevelt was never again as powerful as he had been that election night in November. On July 22, the Senate, weary of the strife, buried FDR's bill. From the Senate floor, California's Hiram Johnson, arms upstretched in a victory salute, looked up at the galleries and cried, ''Glory be to God!''
The nasty fight over court packing turned out better than might have been expected. The defeat of the bill meant that the institutional integrity of the United States Supreme Court had been preserved'--its size had not been manipulated for political or ideological ends. On the other hand, Roosevelt claimed that though he had lost the battle, he had won the war. And in an important sense he had: he had staved off the expected invalidation of the Social Security Act and other laws. More significantly, the switch in the court that spring resulted in what historians call ''the constitutional revolution of 1937'''--the legitimation of a greatly expanded exercise of powers by both the national and state governments that has persisted for decades.
The 168-day contest also has bequeathed some salutary lessons. It instructs presidents to think twice before tampering with the Supreme Court. FDR's scheme, said the Senate Judiciary Committee, was ''a measure which should be so emphatically rejected that its parallel will never again be presented to the free representatives of the free people of America.'' And it never has been. At the same time, it teaches the justices that if they unreasonably impede the functioning of the democratic branches, they may precipitate a crisis with unpredictable consequences. In his dissent in the AAA case in 1936, Justice Stone reminded his brethren, ''Courts are not the only agency of government that must be assumed to have capacity to govern.'' These are lessons'-- for the president and for the court'--as salient today as they were in 1937.
Egyptian Media: John McCain Was The ''Godfather,'' ''Leader,'' & ''Real Supreme Guide'' Of The Muslim Brotherhood - Freedom Outpost
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 12:25
Editor's Note: Of course, he was. That's because he was a traitor!
McCain has already been canonized by an establishment media desperate to destroy President Trump in any way it can, but in Egypt, they're not so worshipful. McCain ''was the main supporter for the terrorist Brotherhood. Senator McCain was the one who opened up the Congress to the Brotherhood. He was the one arranging the meetings and appointments and providing them with protection.''
Remember that when Michele Bachmann called for an investigation into Muslim Brotherhood infiltration in the U.S. government, McCain denounced her on the Senate floor as a bigot and an Islamophobe. There was no investigation.
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''Egyptian media: John McCain is real Supreme Guide of the Muslim Brotherhood,'' Middle East Monitor, September 3, 2018 (thanks to Lookmann):
Egyptian media has accused the late US senator and presidential nominee John McCain of being the 'Godfather', 'leader', and 'real Supreme Guide' of the Muslim Brotherhood organisation.
Article posted with permission from Robert Spencer
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Brazil's Museum Fire: 200 Years of Work Lost - The Atlantic
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 12:08
Two hundred years of work'--and millions of priceless specimens'--have been destroyed in a preventable tragedy.
Ed Yong Sep 4, 2018 Ricardo Moraes / ReutersIn 1784, a Brazilian boy who was looking for a lost cow found a gigantic meteorite instead. The 11,600-pound rock was so cumbersome to transport that it took people almost a century to get it to the National Museum in Rio de Janeiro, where it has since been on proud display. And having once survived the heat of falling through the atmosphere, the Bendeg" meteorite also seems to have survived the fire that tore through the museum on Sunday evening, destroying an as-yet-unquantified proportion of its 20 million specimens.
Looking at pictures of the meteorite, as it stands intact on its pedestal amid the surrounding wreckage, I'm reminded of the final lines of Ozymandias: Nothing beside remains. Round the decay / Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare / The lone and level sands stretch far away.
Just as Percy Bysshe Shelley's poem was about the consequences of hubris, the museum's ruins could be seen as a testament to neglect. The burned building was the largest natural-history museum in Latin America, but it had never been completely renovated in its 200-year history. It had long suffered from obvious infrastructure problems including leaks, termite infestations, and'--crucially'--no working sprinkler system. Recognizing these problems in the 1990s, museum staff began planning to move the collection to a different site, but without stable funding, those plans proceeded in fits and starts.
Over the past five years, the museum faced severe cuts and didn't even receive its full allotted funds from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro. It was recently forced to crowdfund money to repair the termite-damaged base of one of its grandest mounted dinosaurs. ''For many years, we fought with different governments to get adequate resources to preserve what is now completely destroyed,'' Luiz Fernando Dias Duarte, the museum's deputy director, has said.
''This was an announced tragedy,'' added Ana Lucia Araujo, a Brazilian-born historian at Howard University, on Twitter. ''Other tragedies like this can happen any time in numerous museums, libraries, and archives in Brazil.''
The losses are ''incalculable to Brazil,'' said Michel Temer, the country's president, on Twitter. ''Two hundred years of work, research and knowledge have been lost.''
Marina Silva, a candidate in Brazil's upcoming elections, described the fire as ''a lobotomy in Brazilian memory.''
The museum's herbarium, its main library, and some of its vertebrates were housed in a different building that was untouched by the fire. But together, these reportedly account for just 10 percent of the museum's collection. For comparison, the remaining 90 percent includes twice as many specimens as the entire British Museum. Museum staff carried out whatever they could by hand, including parts of the mollusk collection. Time will tell what else survived, and some losses are already clear: The floor beneath the entomology collection collapsed, for example, and the 5 million butterflies and other arthropods within were likely lost.
The museum's archeological collection had frescoes from Pompeii, and hundreds of Egyptian artifacts, including a 2,700-year-old painted sarcophagus. It housed art and ceramics from indigenous Brazilian cultures, some of whose populations number only in their thousands. It contained audio recordings of indigenous languages, some of which are no longer spoken; entire tongues went up in flames. It carried about 1,800 South American artifacts that dated back to precolonial times, including urns, statues, weapons, and a Chilean mummy that was at least 3,500 years old.
Older still was the museum's rich trove of fossils, from crocodile relatives like Pepesuchus to one of the oldest relatives of today's scorpions. It harbored some of the oldest human remains in the Americas: the 11,500-year-old skull and pelvis of a woman who was unearthed in 1975 and nicknamed Luzia. ''The skull is very fragile,'' the artist Maurilio Oliveira told The New York Times. ''The only thing that could have saved it is if a piece of wood or something fell and protected it.''
One might think that fossils, being rock, would be immune to fire. But as Mariana Di Giacomo, a paleontologist from the University of Delaware, described in a Twitter thread, fires can reach temperatures that are high enough to crack stone. It destroys buildings, causing walls and ceilings to fall on fragile specimens. It burns the labels attached to fossils and the numbers that are painted onto them, turning something that's part of the scientific record into uninformative rock. ''Without data, we only have old bones/shells/logs,'' wrote Di Giacomo. Even the water that's used to quench the flames can make things worse, causing fossils to swell and crack, dissolving adhesives, ruining labels even further, and stimulating the growth of mold.
The burned building housed skeletons of several dinosaurs, including Maxakalisaurus, a 44-foot-long, armor-backed, long-necked titan, and Santanaraptor, a lithe predator that contained beautifully preserved soft tissues in its legs, down to individual muscle fibers. ''That really stabs me in the heart as a scientist,'' said John Hutchinson from the Royal Veterinary College. ''I always wanted to go study that specimen. It could have been revelatory. Now that probably will be impossible for anyone.''
The museum was also home to an irreplaceable collection of pterosaurs'--flying reptiles that soared over the dinosaurs' heads. Brazil was something of a ''heaven for pterosaurs,'' and the discovery of spectacular creatures such as Tapejara, Tupandactylus, and Tupuxuara, with their marvelously complete skeletons and improbably ornate crests, helped to reshape our understanding of these animals. ''We may have lost dozens of the best preserved pterosaurs in the world,'' said the paleontologist Mark Witton. ''There really is no collection comparable '... We find them elsewhere in the world, but the quality of the Brazilian material is remarkable.''
Many of these presumably lost specimens were holotypes'--the first, best, and most important examples of their kind. Every specimen is arguably irreplaceable, but holotypes are especially so. Losing them is like losing the avatar of an entire species. Some of these specimens have been drawn and described in the scientific literature, but that information is often patchy, which is why scientists frequently return to holotypes to study them with their own eyes.
''In theory, I am accustomed to the loss and incompleteness of scientific knowledge,'' tweeted Gabi Sobral, a Brazilian paleontologist who now works at the State Museum of Natural History in Stuttgart, Germany. Paleontologists know that they're dealing with just the thinnest sliver of ancient life, preserved through the fortuitous circumstances that turn certain individuals into fossils. And yet it's precisely the rarity of such specimens that makes it that much harder to cope with their loss, and the newfound holes in our knowledge inflicted by the fire. ''Those holes are man-made,'' Sobral told me through tears. ''They were the result of bad infrastructure that we knew was there. We failed the collection.''
Officials are still searching for what specifically sparked the fire, but the answer won't change the fact that lives will be affected, too. ''I keep thinking about my friend who just took office as a professor of malacology,'' Sobral wrote. ''How do you conduct your research? What material do you give to the new student? How do you rebuild an institution this size from scratch?''
In photos: the smoldering remains of Brazil's National Museum
''The Museu Nacional has educated or contributed to the education of most Brazilian biodiversity scientists,'' added Ana Carnaval, a Brazilian biologist who works at the City College of New York. ''A part of us burns today still.''
Officials have begun talking about reconstructing the museum, while students have asked people to email them with photos of the collections, in the hopes of recovering whatever information they can. But these measures will do little to replace the irreplaceable.
''This is not the only museum, not the only home of irreplaceable and invaluable history and heritage, that has been gutted by short-sighted neglect and the consequential preventable tragedy,'' wrote the paleontologist Lisa Buckley from the Peace Region Palaeontology Research Centre. Just two years ago, the Natural History Museum in New Delhi lost much of its collection to a fire. Its fire-suppression system wasn't working. In 2010, flames tore through the Instituto Butantan in S£o Paulo, destroying its precious hoard of venomous snakes, spiders, and scorpions that had been used for medical research. Its fire-suppression system was nonexistent.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.
Ed Yong is a staff writer at
The Atlantic, where he covers science.
Arthur Andersen returns 12 years after Enron scandal - Telegraph
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 11:43
One of the financial world's most infamous names is making a comeback, more than a decade after a major accounting scandal saw it vanish.
Former partners at Arthur Andersen, the accounting firm that once counted itself as one of the world's "big five" until its criminal handling of the energy company Enron led to its downfall, have bought the rights to the Andersen name.
They will rename their San Francisco consultancy WTAS as "Andersen Tax", resurrecting a century-old title that was one of the most respected in US financial history.
Arthur Andersen, which traces its history back to 1913, shredded Enron audit documents amid an investigation into covering up billions in losses at the energy firm. The accountant was subsequently found guilty of obstructing justice, effectively putting an end to all its audit activities in 2002.
It continued as a holding company with few operations while the Enron saga ranks as one of the biggest corporate scandals of all time, and led to substantial losses for shareholders and many thousands of job losses.
WTAS, which was set up in the wake of Arthur Andersen's demise by more than 20 partners, is now one of America's biggest tax firms, and does not do any audit work.
Mark Vorsatz, its chief executive, attempted to distance the name from the Enron scandal.
"Many individuals and organisations were deeply affected by what happened at Enron. But Arthur Andersen, at its best, was a firm that was founded and managed on the basis of quality and objectivity by world-class people with world-class training," he said.
"As a former partner at Arthur Andersen, it was devastating to see nearly 100,000 professionals'--people who started each day with Clients First as their top priority'--lose their jobs.
"For Andersen Tax, independence and objectivity are critical. To be clear, we are not an audit firm and have no intention of providing audit services."
When's a backdoor not a backdoor? When the Oz government says it isn't ' The Register
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 11:34
Australia's promised ''not-a-backdoor'' crypto-busting bill is out and the government has kept its word - it doesn't want a backdoor, just the keys to your front one.
The draft of The Assistance and Access Bill 2018 calls for anyone using or selling communications services in Australia will be subject to police orders for access to private data.
That includes all vendors of computers, phones, apps, social media and cloud services in the Lucky Country, and anyone within national borders using them. These data-tapping orders will be enforced with fines of up to AU$10m (US$7.3m) for companies or $50,000 ($36,368) for individuals
The draft legislation also wants five years in prison for anyone who reveals a data-slurping investigation is going on. And while there's no explicit encryption backdoor requirements in the 110 page draft bill, our first look suggests there doesn't need to be.
Good cop, bad cop, what's a cop? Here's how the government describes its intent: ''The proposed changes are designed to help agencies access intelligible communications through a range of measures, including improved computer access warrants and enhanced obligations for industry to assist agencies in prescribed circumstances."
"This includes accessing communications at points where it is not encrypted. The safeguards and limitations in the Bill will ensure that communications providers cannot be compelled to build systemic weaknesses or vulnerabilities into their products that undermine the security of communications. Providers cannot be required to hand over telecommunications content and data.''
So: providers can't be compelled to create backdoors, and the government claims it wants to capture data at ''points where it is not encrypted''.
Providers will, however, be subject to three tiers of requests for assistance. The first is the good cop routine; a request that makes technical assistance voluntary.
After that comes bad cop; a compulsory request, under which the Director-General of Security or the head of an interception agency issues a technical assistance notice that's enforced by the aforementioned fines.
Finally there's the bottom line; a technical capability notice. This requires companies covered by the regime to ''build a new capability that will enable them to give assistance as specified in the legislation to ASIO and interception agencies''.
If a subject of a technical assistance notice or technical capability notice reveals blows the whistle the legislation recommends five years in jail. There's also a ten-year maximum sentence for individuals who refuse an order to hand over computers under the legislation.
The government's argument that the proposal doesn't mandate backdoors comes primarily from the limitation on technical capabilities notices, since they must not require companies to ''implement or build a systemic weakness or systemic vulnerability'' into their products.
The Register expects that the word ''systemic'' is going to get some scrutiny in the coming days.
Through the Looking Glass The bill enlarges what Australia's laws consider a communications service provider, to include: "foreign and domestic communications providers, device manufacturers, component manufacturers, application providers, and traditional carriers and carriage service providers.''
In other words any ISP (whether or not it owns infrastructure); hardware vendors like Apple, Samsung, Huawei, Intel and Qualcomm; and anybody providing communications applications for games, social media or cloud services, would be subject to Oz government data orders. But it's not a secret backdoor.
Law enforcement agencies would get the right to provide software or equipment that providers would have to install in their networks or systems; and providers would have to facilitate ''access to devices or services.'' But it's not a secret backdoor.
Agencies would be able to ask the industry to help them develop their own ''systems and capabilities'', and providers would have to tell agencies if they changed something in their systems. But it's not a secret backdoor.
If a provider is in control of a service, agencies could require them to modify or substitute the service to give them access to a device or individual's data. But it's not a secret backdoor.
And finally, providers would have to agree to stay quiet about agencies' covert operations, enforced by jail time and massive fines. But it's not a secret backdoor.
Cyber Security minister Angus Taylor this morning told Australian Broadcasting Corporation current affairs program AM that the powers would only be invoked for ''serious crimes'' involving sentences of three years or greater.
In spite of his saying the government wants to apprehend terrorists, paedophiles and organised crime, the law casts a much wider net, also covering helping other countries enforce their criminal law; protecting the public revenue; or protecting national security.
Australians have one month to comment on the proposals. We suspect somewhere in the Department of Home Affairs' server room there's an obscenity filtering moderation code that's going to be very active over the next 30 days. ®
The Assistance and Access Bill 2018
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 11:30
Encryption and other forms of electronic protection are vital security measures that protect private, commercial and Government data and make the communications and devices of all people more secure. However, these security measures are also being employed by terrorists, child sex offenders and criminal organisations to mask illegal conduct. The exploitation of modern communications technology for illicit ends is a significant obstacle to the lawful access of communications by Australia's law enforcement and national security agencies.
To address these threats, the Government has developed the Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment (Assistance and Access) Bill 2018 (1.13MB PDF) (the Assistance and Access Bill) to secure critical assistance from the communications industry and enable law enforcement to effectively investigate serious crimes in the digital era.
We are committed to ensuring this legislation is a reasonable and proportionate response to the problems associated with the increasing use of encrypted communications and invite industry members, interest groups and the public to comment on an exposure draft of the proposed legislation.
The Government welcomes your feedback. Submit any comments to assistancebill.consultation@homeaffairs.gov.au by 10 September 2018.
The challenges posed by encryptionEncryption conceals the content of communications and data held on devices, as well as the identity of users. Secure, encrypted communications are increasingly being used by terrorist groups and organised criminals to avoid detection and disruption. The problem is widespread, for example:
Encryption impacts at least nine out of every ten of ASIO's priority cases. Over 90 per cent of data being lawfully intercepted by the AFP now use some form of encryption. Effectively all communications among terrorists and organised crime groups are expected to be encrypted by 2020. State and Territory law enforcement are facing significant challenges as well. The following example from Victoria Police demonstrates:
A high risk Registered Sex Offender (RSO) was placed on the register for raping a 16 year old female, served nine years imprisonment and is now monitored by Corrections via two ankle bracelets whilst out on parole. Victoria Police received intel that he was breaching his RSO and parole conditions by contacting a number of females typically between 13 and 17 years of age. Enquiries showed that he was contacting these females and offering them drugs in return for sexual favours. The suspect was arrested and his mobile phone was seized but despite legislative requirements he refused to provide his passcode. Due to an inability to access his phone as well as the fact that he used encrypted communication methods such as Snapchat and Facebook Messenger, Victoria Police was unable to access evidence which would have enabled them to secure a successful prosecution and identify further victims and offences. These are high victim impact crimes that are being hindered by the inability of law enforcement to access encrypted communications.
Obstacles to the lawful access of communications significantly impacts the ability of law enforcement and security agencies to enforce the law, investigate serious crimes and protect the public. The measures in the Assistance and Access Bill will help our agencies overcome these challenges.
Key elementsDetailed Explanatory Document of the Assistance and Access Bill (1.49MB PDF).
A new framework for industry assistance The communications industry is a crucial partner for law enforcement and security authorities. The Assistance and Access Bill establishes a model for Australian agencies to engage with domestic and international communications providers.
The Australian Government remains committed to the security of communications services and devices and the privacy of Australians. These powers cannot be used to introduce so-called 'backdoors' or require a provider to disclose communications content or data, see:
Industry Assistance Fact Sheet (176KB PDF) Limitations and Safeguards (163KB PDF) Modern warrants for the digital era Modern communications devices are used by criminals with increasing sophistication to conduct illicit activity online. The Assistance and Access Bill equips law enforcement agencies with the tools to effectively investigate criminal activity in the digital era, see Computer Access Warrants (68.5KB PDF).
Strengthening search warrants The Assistance and Access Bill updates existing search warrant powers to account for the growing complexity of communications devices and the evidential value of data, see:
Law Enforcement Warrants (136KB PDF) Border Force Warrants (137KB PDF) Assistance powers for the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) A wide array of persons can assist ASIO to safeguard Australia's national security. The Assistance and Access Bill enhances ASIO's ability to collect intelligence by seeking assistance from the public and others who hold valuable information, see Assistance to ASIO (132KB PDF).
This AI Tracked Unusual Market Behavior Before Today's Big Crypto Drop
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 05:33
Earlier today, news spread that Goldman Sachs was sidelining plans of opening its cryptocurrency trading desk, a report coinciding with a market that took a sharp downward turn . The other day, market analysts saw someone take a 10,000 BTC short position while overall market sentiment has been positive.
Top analysts have been questioning why someone would take a $74,000,000 short position so quickly. It didn't make sense unless he knew something that they didn't. Only a few days after he started shorting there is some bearish news that comes out.
Others speculate that it could have been someone at Goldman Sachs themselves who took a $74m short position, waited 2 days, then announced they're pulling out of Crypto.
These speculations have been just that, speculation. But with new AI technology keeping a watchful eye on the cryptocurrency market, there is evidence that points to a deliberate market manipulation, though by whom is still up for debate. And CCN just got the scoop, directly from the data source.
What Happened: When the crypto drop occurred in the morning for quite some time traders were looking for news behind such unusual -10% move across the board. Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin and other tokens all declined on substantial volume.
Later in the day, the catalyst was found: Goldman decided to pause developments on its rumored crypto trading desk. Many comments around this news were regarding potential insider trading and the fact that institutional buyers would like to get into the crypto space at lower levels thus manipulating the markets.
Data scientists and market analysts from the RoninAI team , an AI-based crypto signals platform, took a closer look into the situation to see any red flag activities surrounding the drop. A number of indicators were pointing to some unusual behavior right before the drop. One of them is the social sentiment that sporadically increased minutes before the actual drop took place.
The three-day chart below indicates that such volatility in social sentiment takes place often and each time it happens AI algorithms react to it.
This chart doesn't indicate bullish or bearish, rather a sudden influx of activity that is not authentic. To zoom in, let's look into the last couple of hours preceding the event. It is very clear how social sentiment spiked above the 3 standard deviations from its mean levels. Historical data indicates these spikes are not typically naturally occurring events.
Three standard deviations event occur in about 0.3% of cases and every time it happens the RoninAI team studies the event to analyze potential market effects.
In the morning drop, the break above the 3 standard deviations took place about 10 to 15 minutes right before crypto declined to spur more questions as to whether such an event was, in fact, a market manipulation or not. The timing in addition to the unnaturalness of such a spike is strong indications.
Data scientists strongly believe this was either market manipulation or insider trading, but are reluctant to give a definitive answer for obvious reasons.
Regardless, the good news for the Bulls is that whoever is shorting 10k BTC has to buy back at some point and it'll likely push the price up significantly. The bad news is WHEN do they start closing the short positions and buying back. There's no real way to predict how this event will affect the market in the short and long term.
Disclaimer: Data and social sentiment charts/information was provided by RoninAI and do not reflect the opinion of CCN.
Featured image from Shutterstock.
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Mystery solved? Omarosa touts 'clues' about identity of anonymous NYT op-ed writer
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 05:00
Just in case you'd forgotten, Omarosa Manigault Newman is still around. Following today's ''anonymous op-ed'' in the New York Times supposedly written by a member of Trump's administration, Omarosa took the opportunity to remind us that she hasn't fallen off the face of the earth just yet. And to plug her book, of course:
I give clues to who from inside 45's WH wrote the @nytimes Op-Ed on page ((330)) of Unhinged.#SilentArmy #PrayForTheBear pic.twitter.com/VT3fqIBHi0
'-- OMAROSA (@OMAROSA) September 5, 2018
OK '...
How is that a clue '' unless it's a family member there's nothing that identifies the person beyond what was in the NYT description.
'-- Liran Kapoano (@kapoano) September 5, 2018
You've been an enormous help, Omarosa. As usual.
Why don't you just tell us.
'-- Deedee (@Dontatmereally) September 5, 2018
Because she doesn't have any idea what she's talking about.
Give Up Already pic.twitter.com/PNPSD9kbUE
'-- Michele Wolpert (@MicheleWolpert) September 5, 2018
Twitter Shares Plummet While CEO Testifies at Senate Intelligence Hearing
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 04:54
During Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey's testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Wednesday, Twitter's stock fell as much as 6 percent.
Before the hearing started on Wednesday morning, CNBC reported that stocks had already dropped 1 percent.
Dorsey, who is representing Twitter, isn't the only social media executive at the hearing. Facebook's COO, Sheryl Sandberg, is also being questioned. Both executives are present to talk about possible election meddling and abuse on their respective social media platforms.
Google was also invited to testify, but they declined to send their CEO or parent company Alphabet's CEO.
Google is primarily known for other advancements, but the company also has a social media platform.
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Twitter and Facebook have both been the subject of negative attention from the president and conservatives, with multiple political pundits having accused the platforms of offenses ranging from outright discrimination down to ''shadow banning.''
Dorsey addressed those concerns during his prepared testimony, saying, ''We believe strongly in being impartial, and we strive to enforce our rules impartially. In fact, from a simple business perspective and to serve the public conversation, Twitter is incentivized to keep all voices on the platform.''
The Justice Department reported that Attorney General Jeff Sessions plans to meet with some state attorney generals in coming weeks to discuss the possibility that tech companies ''may be hurting competition and intentionally stifling the free exchange of ideas on their platforms,'' CNBC reported.
Wednesday's hearing came days after President Donald Trump once again spoke out against social media platforms, saying that they are ''treading on very, very troubled territory and they have to be careful,'' CNBC reported.
Do you think Twitter is biased against conservatives?''Google has really taken advantage of a lot of people and I think that's a very serious thing and it's a very serious charge,'' Trump told reporters after a meeting with the president of FIFA. ''They better be careful because they can't do that to people.''
The president also accused Google's search results of being ''rigged'' to show negative stories about himself and other conservative politicians and political pundits.
''Google search results for 'Trump News' shows only the viewing/reporting of Fake New Media,'' the president said on Twitter.
Google search results for ''Trump News'' shows only the viewing/reporting of Fake News Media. In other words, they have it RIGGED, for me & others, so that almost all stories & news is BAD. Fake CNN is prominent. Republican/Conservative & Fair Media is shut out. Illegal? 96% of'....
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 28, 2018
''In other words, they have it RIGGED, for me & others, so that almost all stories & news is BAD. Fake CNN is prominent. Republican/Conservative & Fair Media is shut out.''
RELATED: Twitter Reverses Ruling, Concedes It's Against the Rules To Wish Dana Loesch's Children Were Murdered
Trump continued, ''Illegal? 96% of '... results on 'Trump News' are from National Left-Wing Media, very dangerous. Google & others are suppressing voices of Conservatives and hiding information and news that is good. They are controlling what we can & cannot see. This is a very serious situation-will be addressed!''
'....results on ''Trump News'' are from National Left-Wing Media, very dangerous. Google & others are suppressing voices of Conservatives and hiding information and news that is good. They are controlling what we can & cannot see. This is a very serious situation-will be addressed!
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 28, 2018
A Google spokesperson addressed this issue last Tuesday in a statement which read, in part, ''When users type queries into the Google Search bar, our goal is to make sure they receive the most relevant answers in a matter of seconds.
''Search is not used to set a political agenda and we don't bias our results toward any political ideology. Every year, we issue hundreds of improvements to our algorithms to ensure they surface high-quality content in response to users' queries. We continually work to improve Google Search and we never rank search results to manipulate political sentiment.''
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.
Theresa May statement on the Salisbury investigation, by Theresa May
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 04:53
Prime Minister Theresa May: With permission, Mr Speaker, I would like to update the House on the investigation into the attempted murder of Sergey and Yulia Skripal - and the subsequent poisoning of Dawn Sturgess and Charlie Rowley earlier this year.
This was a sickening and despicable act in which a devastatingly toxic nerve agent - known as Novichok - was used to attack our country. It left four people fighting for their lives and one innocent woman dead. And I know the thoughts of the whole House will be with the family of Dawn Sturgess in particular, following their tragic loss.
In March I set out for the House why the government concluded that the Russian State was culpable for the attempted murder of Mr Skripal and his daughter.
I also said that - while we all share a sense of impatience to bring those responsible to justice '' as a nation that believes in the rule of law we would give the police the space and time to carry out their investigation properly.
Since then around 250 detectives have trawled through more than 11,000 hours of CCTV and taken more than 1,400 statements.
Working around the clock they have carried out painstaking and methodical work to ascertain exactly which individuals were responsible and the methods they used to carry out this attack.
Mr Speaker, this forensic investigation has now produced sufficient evidence for the independent Director of Public Prosecutions to bring charges against two Russian nationals for:
the conspiracy to murder Sergei Skripal; the attempted murder of Sergei and Yulia Skripal and Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey; the use and possession of Novichok; and causing grievous bodily harm with intent to Yulia Skripal and Nick Bailey.
This morning, the police have set out how the two Russian nationals travelled under the names of Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov '' names the police believe to be aliases.
They arrived at Gatwick Airport at 3pm on Friday 2nd March, having flown from Moscow on flight SU2588.
They travelled by train to London Victoria, then on to Waterloo before going to the City Stay Hotel in Bow Road East London.
They stayed there on both Friday and Saturday evenings '' and traces of Novichok were found in their hotel room.
On Saturday 3rd March they visited Salisbury, arriving at approximately 2.25pm and leaving less than two hours later, at 4.10pm. The police are confident this was for reconnaissance of the Salisbury area.
On Sunday 4th March they made the same journey, travelling by underground from Bow to Waterloo station at approximately 8.05am, before continuing by train to Salisbury.
The police have today released CCTV footage of the two men which clearly places them in the immediate vicinity of the Skripals' house at 11.58am, which the police say was moments before the attack.
They left Salisbury and returned to Waterloo arriving at approximately 4.45pm and boarded the underground at approximately 6.30pm to Heathrow - from where they returned to Moscow on flight SU2585, departing at 10.30pm.
Mr Speaker, this hard evidence has enabled the independent Crown Prosecution Service to conclude they have a sufficient basis on which to bring charges against these two men for the attack in Salisbury.
The same two men are now also the prime suspects in the case of Dawn Sturgess and Charlie Rowley too.
There is no other line of inquiry beyond this.
And the police have today formally linked the attack on the Skripals and the events in Amesbury '' such that it now forms one investigation.
There are good reasons for doing so.
Our own analysis, together with yesterday's report from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, has confirmed that the exact same chemical nerve agent was used in both cases.
There is no evidence to suggest that Dawn and Charlie may have been deliberately targeted, but rather were victims of the reckless disposal of this agent.
The police have today released further details of the small glass counterfeit perfume bottle and box discovered in Charlie Rowley's house which was found to contain this nerve agent.
And the manner in which the bottle was modified leaves no doubt it was a cover for smuggling the weapon into the country, and for the delivery method for the attack against the Skripals' front door.
Mr Speaker, the police investigation into the poisoning of Dawn and Charlie is ongoing and the police are today appealing for further information. But were these two suspects within our jurisdiction there would be a clear basis in law for their arrest for murder.
Mr Speaker, we repeatedly asked Russia to account for what happened in Salisbury in March, and they have replied with obfuscation and lies.
This has included trying to pass the blame for this attack onto terrorists, onto our international partners, and even onto the future mother-in-law of Yulia Skripal.
They even claimed that I, myself, invented Novichok.
Their attempts to hide the truth by pushing out a deluge of disinformation simply reinforces their culpability.
As we made clear in March, only Russia had the technical means, operational experience and motive to carry out the attack.
Novichok nerve agents were developed by the Soviet Union in the 1980s under a programme codenamed FOLIANT.
Within the past decade Russia has produced and stockpiled small quantities of these agents, long after it signed the Chemical Weapons Convention.
And during the 2000s, Russia commenced a programme to test means of delivering nerve agents including by application to door handles.
We were right to say in March that the Russian State was responsible.
And now we have identified the individuals involved, we can go even further.
Mr Speaker, just as the police investigation has enabled the CPS to bring charges against the two suspects, so the Security and Intelligence Agencies have carried out their own investigations into the organisation behind this attack.
Based on this work, I can today tell the House that, based on a body of intelligence, the Government has concluded that the two individuals named by the police and CPS are officers from the Russian military intelligence service, also known as the GRU.
The GRU is a highly disciplined organisation with a well-established chain of command.
So this was not a rogue operation. It was almost certainly also approved outside the GRU at a senior level of the Russian state.
Mr Speaker, the House will appreciate that I cannot go into details about the work of our security and intelligence agencies. But we will be briefing Opposition leaders and others on Privy Council terms and also giving further detail to the Intelligence and Security Committee.
Let me turn to our response to this appalling attack and the further knowledge we now have about those responsible.
First, with respect to the two individuals, as the Crown Prosecution Service and Police announced earlier today, we have obtained a European Arrest Warrant and will shortly issue an Interpol red notice.
Of course, Russia has repeatedly refused to allow its nationals to stand trial overseas, citing a bar on extradition in its constitution.
So, as we found following the murder of Alexander Litvinenko, any formal extradition request in this case would be futile.
But should either of these individuals ever again travel outside Russia, we will take every possible step to detain them, to extradite them and to bring them to face justice here in the United Kingdom.
Mr Speaker, this chemical weapons attack on our soil was part of a wider pattern of Russian behaviour that persistently seeks to undermine our security and that of our allies around the world.
They have fomented conflict in the Donbas, illegally annexed Crimea, repeatedly violated the national airspace of several European countries and mounted a sustained campaign of cyber espionage and election interference.
They were behind a violent attempted coup in Montenegro. And a Russian-made missile, launched from territory held by Russian-backed separatists, brought down MH17.
We must step up our collective effort to protect ourselves in response to this threat '' and that is exactly what we have done since the attack in March, both domestically and collectively with our allies.
We have introduced a new power to detain people at the UK border to determine whether they are engaged in hostile state activity.
We have introduced the Magnitsky amendment to the Sanctions and Money Laundering Act in response to the violation of human rights. And we have radically stepped up our activity against illicit finance entering our country.
We also expelled 23 Russian diplomats who had been identified as undeclared Russian intelligence officers, fundamentally degrading Russian intelligence capability in the UK for years to come.
And in collective solidarity '' and in recognition of the shared threat posed to our allies '' 28 other countries as well as NATO joined us in expelling a total of over 150 Russian intelligence officers: the largest collective expulsion ever.
Since then, the EU agreed a comprehensive package to tackle hybrid threats.
The G7 agreed a Rapid Response Mechanism to share intelligence on hostile state activity.
NATO has substantially strengthened its collective deterrence, including through a new Cyber Operations Centre.
And the US has announced additional sanctions against Russia for the Salisbury attack.
Mr Speaker, our allies acted in good faith - and the painstaking work of our police and intelligence agencies over the last six months further reinforces that they were right to do so.
Together, we will continue to show that those who attempt to undermine the international rules based system cannot act with impunity.
We will continue to press for all of the measures agreed so far to be fully implemented, including the creation of a new EU Chemical Weapons sanctions regime.
But we will not stop there.
We will also push for new EU sanctions regimes against those responsible for cyber-attacks and gross human rights violations - and for new listings under the existing regime against Russia.
And we will work with our partners to empower the OPCW to attribute chemical weapons attacks to other states beyond Syria.
Most significantly, Mr Speaker, what we have learnt from today's announcement is the specific nature of the threat from the Russian GRU.
We know that the GRU has played a key part in malign Russian activity in recent years.
And today we have exposed their role behind the despicable chemical weapons attack on the streets of Salisbury.
The actions of the GRU are a threat to all our allies and to all our citizens.
And on the basis of what we have learnt in the Salisbury investigation - and what we know about this organisation more broadly - we must now step up our collective efforts, specifically against the GRU.
We are increasing our understanding of what the GRU is doing in our countries, shining a light on their activities, exposing their methods and sharing them with our allies, just as we have done with Salisbury.
And, Mr Speaker, while the House will appreciate that I cannot go into details, together with our allies we will deploy the full range of tools from across our National Security apparatus in order to counter the threat posed by the GRU.
I have said before, and I say again now, that the UK has no quarrel with the Russian people.
And we continue to hold out hope that we will one day once again enjoy a strong partnership with the Government of this great nation.
As a fellow Permanent Member of the UN Security Council, we will continue to engage Russia on topics of international peace and security.
But we will also use these channels of communication to make clear there can be no place in any civilised international order for the kind of barbaric activity which we saw in Salisbury in March.
Finally, Mr Speaker let me pay tribute to the fortitude of the people of Salisbury, Amesbury and the surrounding areas, who have faced such disruption to their daily lives over the past six months.
Let me once again thank the outstanding efforts of the emergency services and National Health Service in responding to these incidents.
And let me thank all those involved in the police and intelligence community for their tireless and painstaking work which has led to today's announcement.
Mr Speaker, back in March, Russia sought to sow doubt and uncertainty about the evidence we presented to this House '' and some were minded to believe them.
Today's announcement shows that we were right.
We were right to act against the Russian State in the way we did. And we are right now to step up our efforts against the GRU.
We will not tolerate such barbaric acts against our country.
And - together with our allies - this government will continue to do whatever is necessary to keep our people safe.
And I commend this statement to the house.
Watch Brett Kavanaugh Turn And Flee As Fred Guttenberg, Dad Of Slain Parkland Student, Tries To Shake His Hand
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 04:48
The father of a student slain in the Parkland school mass shooting earlier this year tried to shake the hand of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, only to be rudely snubbed.
As the Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings recessed for a lunch break on Tuesday, Fred Guttenberg '-- the father of slain, 14-year-old Parkland, Florida, school shooting victim Jaime Guttenberg '-- approached Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and attempted to shake the judge's hand. But when Guttenberg introduced himself as the father of a murdered Parkland student, Kavanaugh ''pulled his hand back, turned his back to me and walked away,'' Guttenberg wrote on his Twitter account.
A video of the brief incident, seen below on this page, quickly went viral on social media, prompting a response from the White House which described Guttenberg '-- who has made frequent appearances on Capitol Hill to advocate for changes to existing gun laws, since the murder of his daughter and 16 others at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in February '-- as ''an unidentified individual,'' according to the Miami Herald.
The White House statement also claimed that security guards stopped Kavanaugh from shaking Guttenberg's hand '-- a claim that would appear to be contradicted by video of the encounter. But Donald Trump administration press spokesperson Raj Shah later posted a video on Twitter which he said showed that ''security intervened,'' while another Twitter user noted a change in two White House accounts of the incident.
In his initial statement, Shah said via Twitter that security intervened ''before the Judge was able to shake his hand.'' But the video posted by Shah clearly showed no attempt by Kavanaugh to acknowledge Guttenberg, apparently leading Shah to say simply that ''security intervened,'' rather than claim Kavanaugh had tried to shake the Parkland father's hand.
Another camera angle on the exchange is viewable in the video below, posted by Share Blue writer Tommy Christopher.
Wow, here you can hear @fred_guttenberg telling Kavanaugh that his daughter "was murdered in Parkland," and Kavanaugh whirls and walks away pic.twitter.com/VdkTij2Vdp
'-- Tommy Christopher (@tommyxtopher) September 4, 2018
Associated Press photographer Andrew Harnik captured the moment in a still image as well, and posted his photo to his own Twitter account.
Fred Guttenberg, the father of Jamie Guttenberg who was killed in the shooting in Parkland, Fla., left, tries to shake hands with @realDonaldTrump's Supreme Court nom., Brett Kavanaugh, right, during a lunch break. Kavanaugh did not shake his hand. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) @ap pic.twitter.com/smcCGuLT6X
'-- Andrew Harnik (@andyharnik) September 4, 2018
''I guess he did not want to deal with the reality of gun violence,'' Guttenberg wrote on his Twitter feed.
Guttenberg also disputed Shah's account that he was simply an ''unidentified individual'' who was blocked from reaching Kavanaugh by security personnel. He said that he was at the hearing as a guest of California Senator Dianne Feinstein, and was introduced by the senator, according to the Herald account.
He had earlier made his presence known, according to images posted on Twitter, by continuing to stand after others in the chamber were seated, a silent protest against gun violence that Guttenberg has also staged during previous visits to Congress.
These are the four people most likely to be behind the anonymous New York Times op-ed from the resistance inside the Trump administration
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 02:47
September 5, 2018 at 6:51 PM
I t's only been online for a few hours, but the anonymous New York Times op-ed penned by a ''senior official in the Trump administration'' has set off a frenzy of guessing about who is claiming to be one of the people ''working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.''
The White House was out with a response Wednesday afternoon. ''We are disappointed, but not surprised, that the paper chose to publish this pathetic, reckless, and selfish op-ed,'' reads the statement from press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders. ''The individual behind this piece has chosen to deceive, rather than support, the duly elected President of the United States. He is not putting country first, but putting himself and his ego ahead of the will of the American people. This coward should do the right thing and resign.''
There are some clues within the 965-word essay of who the ''coward'' (or courageous truth-teller, depending on your perspective) really is. There are indications the writer is a movement conservative, including a line that castigates Trump for not sharing conservatives' affinity for ''free minds, free markets, and free people.'' There is a noticeable lack of discussion of any issues of constitutionalism, the law, or immigration. The writing is straightforward, unpretentious, and familiar with the conventions of op-eds.
Here are four candidates for who ''Anonymous'' could be, in no particular order. THE WEEKLY STANDARD has sought comment from these people but we have yet to receive any responses.
(1) Larry Kudlow
Trump's relatively new chairman of the National Economic Council, Kudlow took over for Gary Cohn, the former Goldman Sachs executive who couldn't abide the president's affinity for tariffs. Since coming to the White House, Kudlow has struggled to fit his free-market views on trade and a few other issues into the administration's more active approach to economics.
As a way of establishing his credentials as a more traditionally Republican critic of Trump, the NYT author cites several positive developments of the administration, including ''effective deregulation, historic tax reform, a more robust military, and more.'' Kudlow, who served in the Reagan administration and has been around movement conservatism for decades, would conceivably find these Reagan-era policy goals the most worthy of praise.
Plus, there are some similarities between the piece's language and Kudlow's own writings. ''The root of the problem is the president's amorality,'' writes the anonymous official. ''Anyone who works with him knows he is not moored to any discernible first principles that guide his decision making.'' Here's what Kudlow wrote in his 1998 book: ''If we stick with what I call first principles, which is morality and ethics, some spiritual guideline which was present at the creation with the founders . . . then this country is unstoppable.''
(2) Kevin Hassett
The chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, Hassett, like Kudlow, comes from the conservative media-policy world. He worked at the American Enterprise Institute for two decades, where he focused on fiscal policy, before coming to the White House last year. Another likely person to focus on the more traditional areas of deregulation, tax reform, and a strong military, Hassett also has a record of being pro-immigration. It's notable that among the administration's "accomplishments" the op-ed does not mention is anything regarding immigration, a signature issue for the president.
Hassett is also a prolific op-ed writer who once wrote regularly for National Review Online and has written for several other publications, including the Times. And this mysterious essay, as Carlos Lozada notes, has the markings of a seasoned op-ed writer.
There's also the interesting ending of the op-ed, which puts the focus on the late senator John McCain and ''his example'-- a lodestar for restoring honor to public life and our national dialogue.'' Hassett was once an adviser to both of McCain's presidential campaign, including the role of chief economic adviser on his 2000 bid for the Republican nomination.
(3) Dan Coats
The elder Hoosier statesman who serves as director of National Intelligence is at the end of a career in politics and government service. Coats would have little to lose professionally if he wrote the op-ed and was outed. And he might be motivated to speak out given the way President Trump spoke dismissively of him and the intelligence community after the summit with Vladimir Putin.
Coats was a conservative Republican in Congress who also has diplomatic experience as the ambassador to Germany. The op-ed writer's focus on foreign policy suggests he may be someone with an interest in, and involvement with, the subject in the Trump White House. The more specific focus on the administration's Russia policy suggests Coats, a critic of Putin while in the Senate, could be frustrated enough with moments like what the op-ed describes as Trump's reluctance to expel Russian spies.
There are enough folksy word choices (''Don't get me wrong,'' for one) to recall the writing style of politicians, and particularly politicians of Midwest stock, such as Coats.
(4) Mike Pompeo
Could the secretary of state, who is currently traveling in Pakistan, really write such a harsh assessment of the president he serves? Pompeo has been closer to Trump than most Cabinet officials, starting from his days as CIA director. And the former Kansas congressman is in the midst of guiding the president's most important diplomatic efforts in North Korea and elsewhere.
As someone fond of, and thought fondly of, by CIA agents, Pompeo could be particularly irked by the suggestion by Trump and his supporters that a ''deep state'' is at work against the president. The correction of the internal resistance to Trump, the op-ed writer protests, is no ''deep state. It's the work of the steady state.''
And in Congress, Pompeo compiled a straightforward conservative record on military spending, trade, and taxes'--although there's little in his public profile to suggest he's particular to the op-ed's libertarianish ''free minds, free markets'' worldview.
Updated September 5, 2018, 7:22 p.m.: A State Department spokesperson responded to the question of whether Mike Pompeo wrote the op-ed with: "No."
is a senior writer at The Weekly Standard.
Asia Argento says accuser Jimmy Bennett sexually attacked her in 2013
Thu, 06 Sep 2018 01:24
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Prominent Harvey Weinstein accuser and MeToo advocate, Asia Argento, allegedly paid off a young actor who accused her of sexually assaulting him. Buzz60
Asia Argento, pictured in April, said she will not permit further payments to Jimmy Bennett, in a statement from her lawyer Mark Jay Heller. (Photo: Frank Franklin/AP)
Italian actress and #MeToo leader Asia Argento now is saying through her new lawyer that a teen-age Jimmy Bennett "sexually attacked' her in 2013 '' instead of the other way around '' but she chose at the time not to press charges against him out of sympathy for his "desperate" circumstances.
Nevertheless, she wants to make sure that the former child actor Bennett, now 22, doesn't receive the remaining $130,000 due to him from a $380,000 payout to him arranged by her late boyfriend , Anthony Bourdain, last year, says her new lawyer, Mark Jay Heller of New York.
"She's not using the word 'rape,' she's saying he 'sexually attacked' her" in a hotel room near the Los Angeles airport in 2013, when Bennett was 17 and she was 37, Heller said in a phone interview with USA TODAY on Wednesday.
But what about the picture of the two of them in bed together, apparently naked, on the day of their encounter, which was published by TMZ last month and shows the pair looking happy and not as if either had endured an attack.
"I am not clear on the picture, I'm looking into that myself," Heller said. He added he believes Bennett sold the picture to TMZ.
Heller spoke after he published a three-page statement on his website in which he attempted to explain Argento's changing story about her encounter with Bennett, which has undermined her status as a #MeToo movement leader as one of the first women to accuse fallen movie mogul Harvey Weinstein of sexual assault.
In his statement, Heller maintained Argento's innocence, predicting "... it will ultimately be determined that Asia never initiated (any) inappropriate contact with a minor, but rather she was attacked by Bennett..."
Heller argued in his statement that two seemingly contrary things Argento has said in recent weeks are both true. He says her denial that she had sex with Bennett was "completely accurate," and her texts where she admitted that she did have sex with him also were accurate but misconstrued.
Argento issued a statement "strongly" denying she had sex with Bennett after The New York Times published a story based on leaked documents last month showing she agreed to a $380,000 payout to Bennett when he threatened to sue her over their encounter in November 2017.
Heller said that what Argento meant was "she never had a sexual relationship with Bennett" and that their relationship over the years (they met when he was hired at age 7 for a role in a 2004 movie she directed and starred in) was merely one of friendship.
But then texts from Argento to a friend were leaked to TMZ showing that she admitted she had sex with Bennett because "the horny kid jumped me," and that the experience felt "weird."
"Everyone assumed (from the texts) that the sex was initiated by her, it was not her who initiated it, he was the perpetrator," Heller said. "She decided at that time, because of what she perceived to be his troubled circumstances, that she was not going to prosecute him."
Heller also claimed, without providing any proof, that Bennett himself was "alleged to have been charged in 2014 at the Los Angeles Police Department with 'unlawful sex with a minor,' 'stalking' and 'child pornography' and 'child exploitation.'..."
USA TODAY has reached out to LAPD and the Los Angeles County district attorney's office about the supposed charges involving Bennett. Greg Risling, a spokesman for the district attorney, told USA TODAY that "our office has no record of him being charged in connection with the referenced 2014 incident."
Bennett's lawyer did not return a message from USA TODAY.
Heller himself was vague about the details, claiming he learned of the alleged charges against Bennett from an 80-page investigative report on Bennett that Bourdain commissioned before he agreed to the $380,000 settlement with Bennett. Bourdain died in June of suicide.
Heller also insisted that Argento has the power to block the remaining payment to Bennett, who has already received $250,000 of the settlement. He said the money from Bourdain was placed in an escrow account controlled by Carrie Goldberg, Argento's and Bourdain's previous attorney.
Bourdain's estate is now controlled by his estranged widow on behalf of their teen daughter.
"Asia recognizes that this may very well inspire Bennett to make further false allegations against her and attempt to besmirch her reputation and diminish her credibility in her accusations against Harvey Weinstein," Heller said. (Argento claims the disgraced filmmaker forcibly performed oral sex on her.)
Heller said the payments to Bennett have been misconstrued as hush money, leaving the wrong impression that Argento was responsible for the encounter with Bennett.
This has "apparently created a public perception that falsely conveyed the impression that Asia initiated and engaged in intercourse with Bennett and was trying to avoid detection by making a $380,000 payment," Heller's statement said. "In fact, the payment agreement did not preclude Bennett from making any statements about the event or preclude him from filing a criminal complaint against Asia."
Argento shock: Could #MeToo be damaged by statutory rape allegation against her?
More: Rain Dove, partner of Rose McGowan breaks silence on Asia Argento, leaked text messages
More: Rose McGowan takes Jimmy Bennett's side against #MeToo pal Asia Argento
Heller also reiterated what Argento previously said, that it was Bourdain's idea to pay Bennett.
"Bourdain chose to protect Asia's and his reputation and to pay Bennett and allowed Bennett to extract payments from him. Asia was completely against this approach because she had done nothing wrong and especially since the incident was initiated and perpetrated by Bennett against her."
Heller said Argento wants to launch "Phase Two" of the #MeToo movement by using the controversy over Bennett and her shifting explanations as a way to encourage anyone with a #MeToo story to come forward, regardless of whether their pasts are entirely blameless.
Heller said Bennett should not be kept from making allegations against Argento.
"Asia believes that in Phase Two of the #metoo movement, everyone should come forward (and) tell their story regardless of their past."
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Jim Mattis Compared Trump to 'Fifth or Sixth Grader,' Bob Woodward Says in Book - The New York Times
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 22:31
Image President Trump and his administration have been unsettled by Bob Woodward's book ''Fear,'' which will be published next Tuesday. Credit Credit Doug Mills/The New York Times WASHINGTON '-- President Trump so alarmed his defense secretary, Jim Mattis, during a discussion last January of the nuclear standoff with North Korea that an exasperated Mr. Mattis told colleagues ''the president acted like '-- and had the understanding of '-- a 'fifth or sixth grader.'''
At another moment, Mr. Trump's aides became so worried about his judgment that Gary D. Cohn, then the chief economic adviser, took a letter from the president's Oval Office desk authorizing the withdrawal of the United States from a trade agreement with South Korea. Mr. Trump, who had planned to sign the letter, never realized it was missing.
These anecdotes are in a sprawling, highly anticipated book by Bob Woodward that depicts the Trump White House as a byzantine, treacherous, often out-of-control operation '-- ''crazytown,'' in the words of the chief of staff, John F. Kelly '-- hostage to the whims of an impulsive, ill-informed and undisciplined president.
The New York Times obtained a copy of the book, ''Fear,'' which will be published next Tuesday by Simon & Schuster.
Mr. Woodward, a longtime Washington Post reporter and editor, has turned the internal dramas of several previous White Houses into best-sellers. In taking on Mr. Trump, he faced the challenge of an unusually leaky administration, which has already provided grist for countless news articles and one mega-bestseller, ''Fire and Fury'' by Michael Wolff.
But Mr. Woodward's book has unsettled the administration and the president, in part because it is clear that the author has spoken with so many current and former officials, though all on the condition that they not be cited as sources for the information.
Mr. Trump, after initially brushing it aside as ''just another bad book,'' accused Mr. Woodward of making up quotes from Mr. Mattis and Mr. Kelly, and perpetuating a ''con on the public.'' In a tweet, he suggested that the author was a Democratic operative who had timed the publication to hurt the president politically before the midterm elections.
The White House, in a statement, dismissed ''Fear'' as ''nothing more than fabricated stories, many by former disgruntled employees, told to make the president look bad.'' After hours of saturation news coverage on cable networks, ''Fear'' rocketed to No. 1 on Amazon.
Some of the freshest details in the book involve Mr. Mattis, a retired Marine Corps general who has been viewed as an anchor in Mr. Trump's cabinet. Mr. Woodward portrays Mr. Mattis as frequently derisive of the commander in chief, rattled by his judgment, and willing to slow-walk orders from him that he viewed as reckless.
In the North Korea meeting, during a period of high tension with the country's leader, Kim Jong-un, Mr. Trump questioned Mr. Mattis about why the United States keeps a military presence on the Korean Peninsula. ''We're doing this in order to prevent World War III,'' Mr. Mattis responded, according to Mr. Woodward.
In April 2017, after President Bashar al-Assad of Syria launched a chemical attack on his own people, Mr. Trump called Mr. Mattis and told him that he wanted the United States to assassinate Mr. Assad. ''Let's go in,'' the president said, adding a string of expletives.
The defense secretary hung up and told one of his aides: ''We're not going to do any of that. We're going to be much more measured.'' At his direction, the Pentagon prepared options for an airstrike on Syrian military positions, which Mr. Trump later ordered.
Mr. Mattis issued his own statement denying he ever used the ''contemptuous words'' that Mr. Woodward attributed to him. ''While I generally enjoy reading fiction,'' he said, ''this is a uniquely Washington brand of literature, and his anonymous sources do not lend credibility.''
Mr. Woodward's reporting adds another layer to a recurring theme in the Trump White House: frustrated aides who sometimes resort to extraordinary measures to thwart the president's decisions '-- a phenomenon the author describes as ''an administrative coup d'(C)tat.'' In addition to Mr. Mattis and Mr. Cohn, he recounts the tribulations of Mr. Kelly and his predecessor, Reince Priebus, whose tensions with Mr. Trump have been reported elsewhere.
Mr. Cohn, Mr. Woodward said, told a colleague he had removed the letter about the Korea free trade agreement to protect national security. Later, when the president ordered a similar letter authorizing the departure of the United States from the North American Free Trade Agreement, Mr. Cohn and other aides plotted how to prevent him from going ahead with a move they feared would be deeply destabilizing.
''I can stop this,'' Mr. Cohn said to the staff secretary, Rob Porter, according to the book. ''I'll just take the paper off his desk.''
Mr. Woodward reported new details about Mr. Cohn's well-documented clash with the president over his equivocal response to the white nationalist violence in Charlottesville, Va., in August 2017. Mr. Cohn, who threatened to resign over the episode, was particularly shaken after one of his daughters discovered a swastika in her college dorm.
Mr. Trump's dealings with foreign leaders were similarly fraught. During a phone call to negotiate the release of an Egyptian-American detained in Cairo, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi said, ''Donald, I'm worried about this investigation,'' referring to the Russia inquiry. ''Are you going to be around?''
In July 2017, Mr. Woodward said, Mr. Trump told Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull of Australia that he would exempt his country from steel tariffs, only to claim, nearly eight months later, that he had never made that promise. Pressed on it by Mr. Turnbull, Mr. Trump said, ''Oh yeah, I guess I remember that.''
Mr. Cohn, Mr. Woodward said, concluded that Mr. Trump was a ''professional liar.''
He found a sympathetic ear in Mr. Kelly, another retired Marine general, who frequently vented his frustration to colleagues about the president, whom he labeled ''unhinged,'' an ''idiot'' and ''off the rails.'' Mr. Kelly's reference to Mr. Trump as an ''idiot'' has been reported before.
''We're in crazytown,'' Mr. Kelly said in one meeting, according to Mr. Woodward. ''I don't even know why any of us are here. This is the worst job I've ever had.''
Mr. Kelly also issued a denial on Tuesday, saying that ''the idea I ever called the president an idiot is not true'' and repeating his earlier insistence that he and Mr. Trump had ''an incredibly candid and strong relationship.''
In Mr. Woodward's account, Mr. Trump rarely returns the loyalty of his subordinates. He derided Attorney General Jeff Sessions, one of his earliest political supporters, as ''mentally retarded'' and a ''dumb Southerner,'' mimicking his accent and making fun of his halting answers during his Senate confirmation hearing.
(Mr. Trump denied that characterization late Tuesday, saying on Twitter that he had ''never used those terms on anyone, including Jeff, and being a southerner is a GREAT thing.'')
Mr. Trump referred to Mr. Priebus as a ''little rat'' who just ''scurries around.'' For his part, Mr. Priebus described the White House as a Hobbesian world, in which officials delight in sticking knives into one another, according to the book.
''When you put a snake and rat and falcon and a rabbit and a shark and a seal into a zoo without walls, things started getting nasty and bloody,'' said Mr. Priebus, whom Mr. Trump eventually ousted and abandoned on a rain-slicked tarmac at Andrews Air Force Base.
Mr. Woodward, who began speaking to Mr. Trump's aides even before the inauguration, also documented the misgivings of the president's former lawyer, John Dowd, about whether the president should submit to questions from the special counsel in the Russia investigation, Robert S. Mueller III.
''Don't testify,'' Mr. Dowd told the president. ''It's either that or an orange jump suit.''
Mr. Dowd denied on Tuesday that he ever said that.
Last January, Mr. Woodward writes, Mr. Dowd staged a practice session in the White House residence to dramatize the pressures Mr. Trump would face in a session with Mr. Mueller. The president stumbled repeatedly, contradicting himself and lying, before he exploded in anger.
''This thing's a goddamn hoax,'' Mr. Trump declared. ''I don't really want to testify.''
Mr. Woodward said he tried to get access to the president but did not interview him. After he had completed the manuscript, Mr. Trump called Mr. Woodward to express regret for not talking to him, blaming it on aides who he said had failed to inform him of interest. In a transcript and a tape of the call published Tuesday by the The Post, Mr. Woodward told Mr. Trump he interviewed many White House officials outside their offices, and gathered extensive documentation. ''It's a tough look at the world and the administration and you,'' he told Mr. Trump.
''Right,'' the president replied. ''Well, I assume that means it's going to be a negative book.''
Mark Landler reported from Washington, and Maggie Haberman from New York. Reporting was contributed by Peter Baker, Helene Cooper, Michael S. Schmidt and Michael Shear from Washington.
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Opinion | I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration - The New York Times
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 22:30
I work for the president but like-minded colleagues and I have vowed to thwart parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.
Image President Trump at an event in August at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J. Credit Credit Tom Brenner for The New York Times The Times today is taking the rare step of publishing an anonymous Op-Ed essay. We have done so at the request of the author, a senior official in the Trump administration whose identity is known to us and whose job would be jeopardized by its disclosure. We believe publishing this essay anonymously is the only way to deliver an important perspective to our readers. We invite you to submit a question about the essay or our vetting process here.
President Trump is facing a test to his presidency unlike any faced by a modern American leader.
It's not just that the special counsel looms large. Or that the country is bitterly divided over Mr. Trump's leadership. Or even that his party might well lose the House to an opposition hellbent on his downfall.
The dilemma '-- which he does not fully grasp '-- is that many of the senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.
I would know. I am one of them.
To be clear, ours is not the popular ''resistance'' of the left. We want the administration to succeed and think that many of its policies have already made America safer and more prosperous.
But we believe our first duty is to this country, and the president continues to act in a manner that is detrimental to the health of our republic.
That is why many Trump appointees have vowed to do what we can to preserve our democratic institutions while thwarting Mr. Trump's more misguided impulses until he is out of office.
The root of the problem is the president's amorality. Anyone who works with him knows he is not moored to any discernible first principles that guide his decision making.
Although he was elected as a Republican, the president shows little affinity for ideals long espoused by conservatives: free minds, free markets and free people. At best, he has invoked these ideals in scripted settings. At worst, he has attacked them outright.
In addition to his mass-marketing of the notion that the press is the ''enemy of the people,'' President Trump's impulses are generally anti-trade and anti-democratic.
Don't get me wrong. There are bright spots that the near-ceaseless negative coverage of the administration fails to capture: effective deregulation, historic tax reform, a more robust military and more.
But these successes have come despite '-- not because of '-- the president's leadership style, which is impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective.
From the White House to executive branch departments and agencies, senior officials will privately admit their daily disbelief at the commander in chief's comments and actions. Most are working to insulate their operations from his whims.
Meetings with him veer off topic and off the rails, he engages in repetitive rants, and his impulsiveness results in half-baked, ill-informed and occasionally reckless decisions that have to be walked back.
''There is literally no telling whether he might change his mind from one minute to the next,'' a top official complained to me recently, exasperated by an Oval Office meeting at which the president flip-flopped on a major policy decision he'd made only a week earlier.
The erratic behavior would be more concerning if it weren't for unsung heroes in and around the White House. Some of his aides have been cast as villains by the media. But in private, they have gone to great lengths to keep bad decisions contained to the West Wing, though they are clearly not always successful.
It may be cold comfort in this chaotic era, but Americans should know that there are adults in the room. We fully recognize what is happening. And we are trying to do what's right even when Donald Trump won't.
The result is a two-track presidency.
Take foreign policy: In public and in private, President Trump shows a preference for autocrats and dictators, such as President Vladimir Putin of Russia and North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-un, and displays little genuine appreciation for the ties that bind us to allied, like-minded nations.
Astute observers have noted, though, that the rest of the administration is operating on another track, one where countries like Russia are called out for meddling and punished accordingly, and where allies around the world are engaged as peers rather than ridiculed as rivals.
On Russia, for instance, the president was reluctant to expel so many of Mr. Putin's spies as punishment for the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain. He complained for weeks about senior staff members letting him get boxed into further confrontation with Russia, and he expressed frustration that the United States continued to impose sanctions on the country for its malign behavior. But his national security team knew better '-- such actions had to be taken, to hold Moscow accountable.
This isn't the work of the so-called deep state. It's the work of the steady state.
Given the instability many witnessed, there were early whispers within the cabinet of invoking the 25th Amendment, which would start a complex process for removing the president. But no one wanted to precipitate a constitutional crisis. So we will do what we can to steer the administration in the right direction until '-- one way or another '-- it's over.
The bigger concern is not what Mr. Trump has done to the presidency but rather what we as a nation have allowed him to do to us. We have sunk low with him and allowed our discourse to be stripped of civility.
Senator John McCain put it best in his farewell letter. All Americans should heed his words and break free of the tribalism trap, with the high aim of uniting through our shared values and love of this great nation.
We may no longer have Senator McCain. But we will always have his example '-- a lodestar for restoring honor to public life and our national dialogue. Mr. Trump may fear such honorable men, but we should revere them.
There is a quiet resistance within the administration of people choosing to put country first. But the real difference will be made by everyday citizens rising above politics, reaching across the aisle and resolving to shed the labels in favor of a single one: Americans.
The writer is a senior official in the Trump administration.
Follow The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook and Twitter (@NYTopinion).
Times Publishes Op-Ed From Member of 'Resistance' Within Administration. Trump Calls It 'Gutless' - The New York Times
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 22:29
Video President Trump denounced a critical Op-Ed from an anonymous White House official, calling it ''gutless.'' Published On Sept. 5, 2018 Credit Credit Image by Doug Mills/The New York Times WASHINGTON '-- President Trump denounced what he called a ''gutless editorial'' posted by The New York Times on Wednesday, an essay written by an unnamed administration official claiming that advisers to the president were deliberately trying to thwart his ''misguided impulses'' from the inside.
At an event at the White House, Mr. Trump angrily assailed The Times for publishing the Op-Ed column, the second time in two days that news reports highlighted the way that some members of his team quietly act to undermine the president when they believe he may be acting dangerously.
''We have somebody in what I call the failing New York Times talking about he's part of the resistance within the Trump administration,'' the president said. ''This is what we have to deal with.''
[Read the Op-Ed.]
He went on: ''So when you tell me about some anonymous source within the administration, probably who's failing, and who's probably here for all the wrong reasons. No. And The New York Times is failing.'' He added: ''So if the failing New York Times has an anonymous editorial, can you believe it, anonymous, meaning gutless, a gutless editorial.''
Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, issued a written statement criticizing the anonymous official.
''The individual behind this piece has chosen to deceive, rather than support, the duly elected president of the United States,'' she said. ''He is not putting country first, but putting himself and his ego ahead of the will of the American people. This coward should do the right thing and resign.''
The author of the piece, whose identity is known to the editors of the editorial pages but was withheld because his or her job might be in jeopardy, wrote that the president's ''impulses are generally anti-trade and anti-democratic'' and that at one point there was talk of the cabinet invoking the 25th Amendment to declare Mr. Trump unable to discharge his duties.
''We want the administration to succeed and think that many of its policies have already made America safer and more prosperous,'' the official wrote. ''But we believe our first duty is to this country, and the president continues to act in a manner that is detrimental to the health of our republic.
''That is why many Trump appointees have vowed to do what we can to preserve our democratic institutions while thwarting Mr. Trump's more misguided impulses until he is out of office,'' the official added.
The Op-Ed pages of The Times are managed separately from the news department. The Op-Ed editors wrote that they took the rare step of publishing a column without naming the author because of the significance of the subject. ''We believe publishing this essay anonymously is the only way to deliver an important perspective to our readers,'' they wrote.
Ms. Sanders said the newspaper acted irresponsibly. ''We are disappointed, but not surprised, that the paper chose to publish this pathetic, reckless and selfish Op-Ed,'' she said. ''This is a new low for the so-called paper of record, and it should issue an apology, just as it did after the election for its disastrous coverage of the Trump campaign. This is just another example of the liberal media's concerted effort to discredit the president.''
The Times never issued such an apology. The publisher and executive editor sent a letter to subscribers after the November 2016 election acknowledging questions about whether Mr. Trump's surprise victory meant that the newspaper and other news outlets underestimated his support.
''As we reflect on the momentous result, and the months of reporting and polling that preceded it,'' the letter said, ''we aim to rededicate ourselves to the fundamental mission of Times journalism.''
Follow Peter Baker and Maggie Haberman on Twitter: @peterbakernyt @maggienyt.
Sanders ratchets up Amazon attacks with 'Stop BEZOS Act' | Fox Business
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 22:27
Sen. Bernie Sanders unveiled legislation on Wednesday targeting pay and working conditions at big companies like Amazon, after the pair traded jabs in blog posts last week.
Called the ''Stop Bad Employers by Zeroing Out Subsidies'' Act, or Stop BEZOS Act, the bill would impose a 100 percent welfare tax on large employers equal to the amount that their workers receive in public assistance benefits, in an effort to encourage companies to raise wages.
''The Stop Bezos Act gives large employers a choice: pay workers a living wage or pay for the public assistance programs low wage workers are forced to rely upon,'' the text of the legislation reads.
The independent Vermont senator cited research from the University of California, Berkeley Labor Center, which found low wages end up costing taxpayers $152.8 billion per year to fund federal assistance programs.
For the purpose of the bill, large employers are defined as those with more than 500 workers '' including independent contractors and franchise workers.
During a speech over the weekend, Sanders called out Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos for the company's pay practices, despite the businessman's vast fortune.
''We have one person whose wealth is increasing by $250 million every single day, while he pays thousands of his workers' wages that are so low that they are forced to go on food stamps, Medicaid, and subsidized housing,'' Sanders said, referring to Bezos.
The senator has said the company's median pay is 9 percent less than the industry average at $28,446, and ''well below'' a livable wage.
Meanwhile, Amazon, in a rare political post, wrote a blog post in response to Sanders' barbs last week, calling comments the senator made ''inaccurate and misleading.''
The e-commerce giant refuted Sanders' claims that it doesn't pay lower-level employees a livable wage and therefore workers have to rely on government assistance programs, like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), at the expense of other taxpayers. The company added that Sanders' references to SNAP are misleading because they include part-time employees and those who only worked for the company for a short period of time '' saying that these groups would ''almost certainly qualify for SNAP.''
Recent reports, citing the New Food Economy, show that as many as one-third of Amazon's employees in Arizona receive food stamps, as do one-in-10 in Ohio and Pennsylvania.
In addition to the public spat between Sanders and Amazon, the senator names other large U.S. corporations, including McDonalds, Walmart and American Airlines, as targets of his bill.
Exposed - Creator of QAnon Speaks for the First Time - One America News Network
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:16
Jack Posobiec '-- OAN Correspondent, Washington, D.C.UPDATED 7:52 AM PT '-- Wed. Sept. 5, 2018'---How it Began
For the past 10 months, an online movement has been picking up steam in America and has moved from imageboards and online forums to Reddit, to Twitter, and to YouTube. It leapt from the little screen to the big screen when people began showing up at political rallies wearing shirts and waving signs that carried the name of the movement: QAnon, or simply Q.
What is QAnon? Where did it come from? What is its purpose? And, most importantly, who is Q?
Q made its first appearance on the web forum ''4chan'' on October 31, 2017 as the ''Q Clearance Patriot.''
However, several posts prior to this from Oct 28 also appeared to follow this posting pattern of Socratic method questioning, cryptic messages, riddles, and coded ''drops'' of information.
Here are the first Q posts:
Hillary's Arrest to take place on Oct 30, 2017https://archive.4plebs.org/pol/thread/146981635/#147005381
https://archive.4plebs.org/pol/thread/146981635/#147012719
Mockingbirdhttps://archive.4plebs.org/pol/thread/146981635/#147023341
National Guard deploymenthttps://archive.4plebs.org/pol/thread/147075091/#147104628
But, October 30th, 2017, came and went, and yet Hillary Clinton was not arrested on that day. The original intel drop never came to pass. And still hasn't.
Instead, what happened on October 30th was quite the contrary. It was the exact opposite of the poster's prediction. Trump campaign officials and advisors Paul Manafort, Rick Gates, and George Papadopoulos were all indicted. Manafort and Gates were placed under home arrest.
This was devastating for the credibility of the original poster.
However, instead of ending the op, the posters decided upon a different tactic. They would ignore the real world facts, retroactively claim ''Manafort was a plant,'' and make even bigger predictions: The arrests of John Podesta and Huma Abedin. Then, finally, they gave the character a name.
The goalposts were shifted, and instead the first appearance of the ''Q Clearance Patriot'', supposedly a member of military intelligence, arrived just one day after the Hillary arrest that never was.
One of the issues with this is that ''Q Clearance'' is not found in military intelligence. It is a Department of Energy designation, and deals exclusively with nuclear programs information. To date, QAnon has not posted insider information about US nuclear programs.https://archive.4plebs.org/pol/thread/147433975/#147433975https://archive.4plebs.org/pol/thread/147433975/#147434025
This pattern of big predictions not coming true (such as the military parade) and the moving of goalposts and retroactive hand-waving explanation continues on and on throughout the posts of QAnon, which I read in full in while researching this piece. You can currently find them hosted here: https://qanon.app/
An extensive compendium which tracks the failures and false predictions of the Q posters in realtime is found here, and is regularly updated: https://old.reddit.com/r/Qult_Headquarters/comments/93v1ui/a_noncomprehensive_timeline_of_qs_failed/
One of the most glaring examples is here:07/31/18 '' For his 1776th post, Q uploads an image that's supposed to function as 'proof' that he's working with Trump (Trump's signature + ''#1776''). However, not only are the '#' and '1' very different from Trump's own handwriting, but even Q's followers found evidence that it's another photoshop job.
At one point, the Q posters decided to move from the 4chan message board to the 8chan message board. No explanation was given for this.
Later, the Q posters began using ''tripcodes'' which is a type of validation password for anonymous message board users. They claimed that these tripcodes were validated by the board moderators, and proved that only Q could post with them. However, these codes were repeatedly hacked and underwent frequent changes. Frequent changes took place during May 2018. Interestingly, the tripcode changes seemed to coincide with changes in the lineup of board moderators as new mods were brought in and old mods were kicked out of the group.
Recently, on 08/10/18, Q's password was revealed yet again by a former believer attempting to reach out to those who are currently sucked in, and debunks the belief that Q's passwords contain clues. This hacker posted all of Q's former passwords, and explained they were made with a fairly amateurish encryption key, one that did not even meet the standads of the current intelligence community.
'---Who Began It
From the start, Q's underlying message was that President Trump was working behind-the-scenes to arrest and prosecute his political enemies. There were also reports that he was secretly working with Robert Mueller to indict Hillary Clinton and members of the Democrat party.
However, there was always more to the story. Surely, there had to be someone behind all the cryptic posts. Was it truly a ''Q-Clearance'' holding patriot, or some other member of military intelligence?
Who was Q?
Would Q ever be revealed?
The answer, was actually more simple than all of that.
To an extent, I've always known who Q was.
No, I didn't follow all the posts in realtime, but when they started appearing in my mentions on twitter, or I would write up a story and post it, I would start to see people saying my story had already been coming, with a phrase that goes ''Q predicted this.''
At first, I had no earthly clue what people were talking about or who this new source of information was. After a few days of this, I became curious, and began to track it back to 8chan, and before that to the original 4chan posts.
And then it hit me.
I thought back to a conversation I'd had months before with a pro-Trump Twitter troll who goes by the name Dreamcatcher. Dreamcatcher had been around during the 2016 election, and was a constant source of memes and ideas for new and original pro-Trump content. But, perhaps more importantly for our purposes, Dreamcatcher was close to Microchip.
Microchip gained infamy for his effictiveness in creating trending topics on twitter through high bot networks, and twitter's numerous suspensions of him. He has been profiled in several mainstream publications and credited with having much more effect on the 2016 election in social media than any so-called Russian bot interference.
Months before, Dreamcatcher had told me about an ''op'' he was planning with Microchip that would plant bits and pieces of information on 4chan and act like it was coming from a high-level source inside the administration or the intel community. At the time he'd asked if I wanted to be a part of it. I declined.
Microchip, who now posts on Gab under his original profile and regularly denounces the QAnon movement's transition from online forum community into a full-blown cult, started the conversation with his co-creator saying, ''Unite the Right was pretty terrible for Trump, man.''
His partner, Dreamcatcher, replied that Richard Spencer, the progressive white supremacist, ''is a moron,'' and that the two should figure out a way to use 4chan to generate excitement among Trump's most devoted followers.
Quickly, their venture picked up steam.
The use of unnamed intelligence agent ''Anons'' on 4chan is a practice that far predates the QAnon movement. During the 2016 election an anonymous user called ''FBIAnon'' claimed to be an FBI agent working on the Clinton investigation. Weaving together bits of publicly-known information and speculation, this user posted many times throughout the campaign to the 4chan imageboard. https://i.redd.it/6zq652jwnhuz.png
Microchip remembered this ''Op'' as he calls such online information operations.
''That signing FBIAnon is good too, looks spooky, but we should do our own thing,'' one of them wrote. ''[Let's] use the Socratic method to question stuff'... [people] flip sh*t on suggestions alone.'' said Micro.
''Just sign it Micro,'' Dreamcatcher replied.
But the response was that they needed something more ''sinister.''
And Q was born.
The letter was the perfect letter. It was used in a novel by Luther Blisset first published in Italian in 1999. In the novel, the setting is the 16th Century Reformation of the Catholic Church. It is also the clearance seal of the United States for access to the most secret intelligence matters including top restricted and formerly restricted data and national security information.
I will now post in full the original Discord chat logs where Microship, Dreamcatcher, and others planned their Operatations. For the record, I do know their true identities. We have decided not to reveal their personal information to the public to prevent retaliation against them. In this case, ''Op Q'':
(POST IMAGES)
According to the logs, they tracks up with the Microchip group coming up with the plans for Q in August 2017. They then appear to have put the plan on hold when their Antifa Petition took off soon after. By the time that had run out of steam in October, they came back to the FBIAnon plan, tweaking it this time to be a member of military intelligence.
They saw it as a way to ''take the offensive'' in the wake of Unite the Right, and bring together the online Trump movement which was now fractured in their view. They brought together elements of Wikileaks (information drops), Pizzagate (pedophile elites), and Infowars (deep state threats to Trump) and wove them together in a way that would seem interesting as a ''source'' to the online community.
''This has to be simple, man jones does this all day, we can replicate,'' Microchip stated in one message.
From the start Q was always meant to mirror an Infowars / Wikileaks narrative, with the key difference being that they would pretend Q was actually a high-level government source with inside knowledge about varied hot button topics with which the audience was already familiar.
Now, I know what you're thinking.
This seems plausible, but if Microchip is a notorious internet troll, then how can we trust any of this?
I had the same question.
That's why I asked Microchip to record a video of himself opening up the Discord app on his iOS and scrolling through on his screen to show the messages were not photoshopped or recreated in any way.
Here is that video.
To the extant that you are now thinking, well if is Microchip is a notorious troll, he could have just hacked iOS and Discord and made up these weeks of chat logs as a means to take credit for Q. Is that likely?
Now, that may very well be the case. But Microchip already has notoriety plus a significant online following and reputation. So, there wouldn't be much benefit to him from spending all this time to come up with a new origin story and documentary evidence. And again, they told people at the time they were planning this Op Q. So, which is more likely?
In the course of reporting this piece, I had many occasions to speak with both Microchip and Dreamcatcher. You can find them both online, and they have both agreed to answer questions from press and public alike about the creation of QAnon.
I welcome skeptecism and questions about these chat logs. I am a skeptic myself, but in the the end, I decided it was best to release the information for the public to read and make up their own minds.
In the end, you decide.
'' Q Arrives at Trump Rallies
So, how did this get so big?
How did a string of anonymous posts from Microchip and others on 4chan lead to t-shirts and signs at a Trump rally?
Well, that story has been told, by and large. It is longer, and far more complex to go through the cast of characters, trolls, internet researchers, followers, and believers who have entered the QAnon movement and found internet fame from it '' not to mention raising substantial amounts of money acting as ''Q Decoders''
Microchip and his cohorts dropped off on Q posts fairly early on. A new crew caught on to the Op. This crew brought the Q postings first from 4chan onto a new board controlled by themselves on the message board 8chan. They began to introduce the aspect of ''tripcodes'' and changing tripcodes to validate the Q persona. Then, they decided to find more user-friendly ground by founding Reddit pages such as CBTS (Calm Before The Storm) and TheGreatAwakening. Along the way many people came and went from the group posting as QAnon.
This crew has been named and reported on many times before here, so instead of going through all the expensive reporting, I will make a few summary notes.
The people currently making the most money off of Q appear to be the Patriot Soapbox group. Numerous times, their online user Pamplet Anon has revealed himself to have access to Q's tripcode passwords, and has even accidentally posted as Q while logged in on 8chan on livestreams. He also once, embarassingly, was caught claiming a post was from Q that did not contain the actual tripcode validation '' not that hard to figure out how he knew about the post when no one else did. He recently set up an LLC out of his parents' house to take in more donations from Q followers.
There are others in the QAnon movement such as the user PrayingMedic who fashion themselves instead as spirital Q guides and mix Christian theology with Q posts and the ongoing 8chan narrative. On his Patreon page, where he currently hosts 492 patreons, PrayingMedic claims that QAnon appears to him in his dreams and only those who pay extra to him on Patreon can receives his exclusive Q decodes.
This is the current state of QAnon online.
'--For More Information
There has been much and more posted online about Q and people who have left the movement. I recommend the following resources:
https://old.reddit.com/r/Qult_Headquarters/
'-- What Next?
For those who followed this online movement, this information may come as somewhat of a shock, but hopefully, this information will be seen as a helpful reminder to question anonymous sources on the internet, and to remain skeptical of claims when events and situations take other directions, as has been the case here.
While the people involved in this movement may have began posting as Q for whatever reasons, the fact remains that people did enjoy these posts and this form of information. Perhaps that can be the starting off point for a new series of riddles and puzzles and a new type of information system. There certainly appears to be an interest in it '' but from the start, whoever ends up running it should always be honest, open, and truthful about who they are, and their motives.
ING lax on money laundering, agrees '‚¬775m out-of-court settlement - DutchNews.nl
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:13
The public prosecution department has reached a '‚¬775m out of court settlement with ING for failing to properly monitor money transfers for potential money laundering.
The department says between 2010 and 2016, the bank's clients were effectively able to launder hundreds of millions of euros because ING was not doing its job properly. Banks are required by law to report suspicious transactions.
'The criminal investigation revealed that ING NL was seriously deficient in this respect. As a result, clients were able to use accounts held with ING NL for criminal activities for many years, virtually undisturbed, the public prosecutor said.
The settlement is made up of a fine of '‚¬675m and a repayment of '‚¬100m.
The probe began in 2016 after it emerged several criminal investigations were underway involving private individuals and companies with an ING account. One of the most notorious is the case of telecoms firm VimpelCom which paid millions of euros in bribes to the daughter of the Uzbekistan president via the bank.
Another case, the public prosecutor said, involved 'a women's underwear trader which was able to launder approximately '‚¬150m through its bank accounts held with ING NL. 'It should have been clear to the bank that the monetary flows had little to do with the lingerie trade and were therefore unusual,' the department said.
Warnings
The public prosecutor also said the Dutch central bank, which regulates the financial markets, had warned ING about its performance but that not enough improvements were implemented.
ING said in a statement that it 'acknowledges serious shortcomings in the execution of customer due diligence policies to prevent financial economic crime' and that it 'sincerely regrets that these shortcomings enabled customers to misuse accounts of ING Netherlands'.
The bank said it had initiated measures against a number of (former) senior employees. This included both withholding bonuses and suspension.
Mueller has evidence that Trump confidant went to Prague, despite denials | McClatchy Washington Bureau
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:08
The Justice Department special counsel has evidence that Donald Trump's personal lawyer and confidant, Michael Cohen, secretly made a late-summer trip to Prague during the 2016 presidential campaign, according to two sources familiar with the matter.
Confirmation of the trip would lend credence to a retired British spy's report that Cohen strategized there with a powerful Kremlin figure about Russian meddling in the U.S. election.
It would also be one of the most significant developments thus far in Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of whether the Trump campaign and the Kremlin worked together to help Trump win the White House. Undercutting Trump's repeated pronouncements that ''there is no evidence of collusion,'' it also could ratchet up the stakes if the president tries, as he has intimated he might for months, to order Mueller's firing.
Trump's threats to fire Mueller or the deputy attorney general overseeing the investigation, Rod Rosenstein, grew louder this week when the FBI raided Cohen's home, hotel room and office on Monday. The raid was unrelated to the Trump-Russia collusion probe, but instead focused on payments made to women who have said they had sexual relationships with Trump.
Cohen has vehemently denied for months that he ever has been in Prague or colluded with Russia during the campaign. Neither he nor his lawyer responded to requests for comment for this story.
It's unclear whether Mueller's investigators also have evidence that Cohen actually met with a prominent Russian '' purportedly Konstantin Kosachev, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin '-- in the Czech capital. Kosachev, who chairs the Foreign Affairs Committee of a body of the Russian legislature, the Federation Council, also has denied visiting Prague during 2016. Earlier this month, Kosachev was among 24 high-profile Russians hit with stiff U.S. sanctions in retaliation for Russia's meddling.
But investigators have traced evidence that Cohen entered the Czech Republic through Germany, apparently during August or early September of 2016 as the ex-spy reported, said the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is confidential. He wouldn't have needed a passport for such a trip, because both countries are in the so-called Schengen Area in which 26 nations operate with open borders. The disclosure still left a puzzle: The sources did not say whether Cohen took a commercial flight or private jet to Europe, and gave no explanation as to why no record of such a trip has surfaced.
Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller's office, declined comment.
Unconfirmed reports of a clandestine Prague meeting came to public attention in January 2017, with the publication of a dossier purporting to detail the Trump campaign's interactions with Russia '' a series of reports that former British MI6 officer Christopher Steele gathered from Kremlin sources for Trump's political opponents, including Democrat Hillary Clinton's campaign and the Democratic National Committee. Cohen's alleged communications with the Russians were mentioned multiple times in Steele's reports, which he ultimately shared with the FBI.
When the news site Buzzfeed published the entire dossier on Jan. 11, Trump denounced the news organization as ''a failing pile of garbage'' and said the document was ''false and fake.'' Cohen tweeted, ''I have never been to Prague in my life. #fakenews.''
In the ensuing months, he allowed Buzzfeed to inspect his passport and tweeted: ''The #Russian dossier is WRONG!''
Last August, an attorney for Cohen, Stephen Ryan, delivered to Congress a point-by-point rebuttal of the dossier's allegations, stating: ''Mr. Cohen is not aware of any 'secret TRUMP campaign/Kremlin relationship.'''
However, Democratic investigators for the House and Senate Intelligence Committees, which are conducting parallel inquiries into Russia's election interference, also are skeptical about whether Cohen was truthful about his 2016 travels to Europe when he was interviewed by the panels last October, two people familiar with those probes told McClatchy this week. Cohen has publicly acknowledged making three trips to Europe that year '' to Italy in July, England in early October and a third after Trump's November election. The investigators intend to press Cohen for more information, said the sources, who lacked authorization to speak for the record
One of the sources said congressional investigators have ''a high level of interest'' in Cohen's European travel, with their doubts fueled by what they deem to be weak documentation Cohen has provided about his whereabouts around the time the Prague meeting was supposed to have occurred.
Cohen has said he was only in New York and briefly in Los Angeles during August, when the meeting may have occurred, though the sources said it also could have been held in early September.
Evidence that Cohen was in Prague ''certainly helps undermine his credibility,'' said Jill Wine-Banks, a former Watergate prosecutor who lives in Chicago. ''It doesn't matter who he met with. His denial was that I was never in Prague. Having proof that he was is, for most people, going to be more than enough to say I don't believe anything else he says.''
It doesn't matter who he met with. His denial was that I was never in Prague. Having proof that he was is, for most people, going to be more than enough to say I don't believe anything else he says.
Former Watergate prosecutor Jill Wine-Banks
''I think that, given the relationship between Michael Cohen and the president,'' Wine-Banks said, ''it's not believable that Michael Cohen did not tell him about his trip to Prague.''
The dossier alleges that Cohen, two Russians and several Eastern European hackers met at the Prague office of a Russian government-backed social and cultural organization, Rossotrudnichestvo. The location was selected to provide an alternative explanation in case the rendezvous was exposed, according to Steele's Kremlin sources, cultivated during 20 years of spying on Russia. It said that Oleg Solodukhin, the deputy chief of Rossotrudnichestvo's operation in the Czech Republic, attended the meeting, too.
Further, it alleges that Cohen, Kosachev and other attendees discussed ''how deniable cash payments were to be made to hackers in Europe who had worked under Kremlin direction against the Clinton campaign.''
U.S. intelligence agencies and cyber experts say Kremlin-backed hackers pirated copies of thousands of emails from the Democratic National Committee and Clinton campaign chief John Podesta during 2015 and 2016, some politically damaging, including messages showing that the DNC was biased toward Clinton in the party's nomination battle pitting her against Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. Mueller's investigators have sought to learn who passed the emails to WikiLeaks, a London-based transparency group, which published them in July and October, causing embarrassment to Clinton and her backers.
Citing information from an unnamed ''Kremlin insider,'' Steele's dossier says the Prague meeting agenda also included discussion ''in cryptic language for security reasons,'' of ways to ''sweep it all under the carpet and make sure no connection could be fully established or proven.'' Romanians were among the hackers present, it says, and the discussion touched on using Bulgaria as a location where they could ''lie low.''
It is a felony for anyone to hack email accounts. Other laws forbid foreigners from contributing cash or in-kind services to U.S. political campaigns.
If Cohen met with Russians and hackers in Prague as described in the dossier, it would provide perhaps the most compelling evidence to date that the Russians and Trump campaign aides were collaborating. Mueller's office also has focused on two meetings in the spring of 2016 when Russians offered to provide Trump campaign aides with ''dirt'' on Clinton '' thousands of emails in one of the offers.
Cohen is already in the spotlight because of the FBI raids on his offices and home in New York. Various news outlets have reported that investigators principally sought evidence on non-Russia matters, including a covert, $130,000 payment Cohen made days before the 2016 election to porn star Stormy Daniels to silence her about an alleged affair with Trump. The FBI raids also scooped up some of Cohen's computers and cell phones among other evidence, according to these reports.
CNN, which reported Friday that Cohen's business dealings have been a subject of a separate months-long investigation by prosecutors in the Southern District of New York, also quoted sources as saying that Cohen often taped phone conversations and those tapes also could be in the FBI's possession.
If the raids turned up evidence that would be useful to Mueller's investigation, rather than the one being done in New York, it would be shared with Mueller's team, unless a court imposes conditions regarding the transfer of evidence, said former senior Justice Department official Michael Zeldin. ''Given the sensitivities in this case, I expect evidentiary sharing decisions will be mediated by main DOJ and FBI headquarters,'' Zeldin said.
Prior to Trump's election, Cohen spent almost a decade in high-profile positions in Trump's real estate company and grew a reputation as Trump's ''fixer.'' During 2016, he was an informal adviser to the Trump campaign, proving to be one of Trump's fiercest defenders in television interviews.
When Trump took office, Cohen became Trump's personal attorney.
He also formed a law firm, Michael D. Cohen & Associates, which in April forged a strategic alliance with the powerful Washington lobbying firm Squire Patton Boggs. With headlines blaring about Cohen's role in providing hush money to Daniels, the two firms disclosed this week they had parted company.
Soon after Trump took office, Cohen became embroiled in controversy when The New York Times reported he was involved in promoting a secret ''peace plan'' for Ukraine and Russia that was the brainchild of a little-known Ukrainian legislator, Andrii Artemenko. The plan would have ended U.S. sanctions against Moscow and allowed Russia, if it pulled back militants invading Ukraine, to keep control of Crimea under a 50- to 100-year lease, if voters approved.
In February 2017, he told the newspaper, he left it on the desk of Trump's national security adviser, Michael Flynn, who resigned days later and later pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about contacts with the Russian ambassador. But in subsequent interviews, Cohen denied ever delivering the plan to the White House.
Knowledge that Cohen may indeed have traveled to Prague during the campaign could heighten Trump's risk of being prosecuted for obstruction of justice if news reports are accurate that he is considering firing Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who oversees the Mueller investigation, or Mueller.
''This kind of knowledge impacts his state of mind in taking any action in firing anyone from the Justice Department or Mueller's office,'' Wine-Banks said, because it would be easier for prosecutors to build a criminal case showing he did so to impede Mueller's investigation.
If the Prague meeting actually occurred, Kosachev's possible involvement would be especially significant given his close ties to Putin and other roles he has played in covert Moscow efforts to destabilize other countries, Russia experts said.
''While not a member of Putin's innermost circle, (Kosachev) is one of the most influential Russian voices on foreign affairs,'' said Michael Carpenter, a former senior Pentagon official. ''When Kosachev speaks, everyone knows he's speaking for the Kremlin.''
Kosachev appears to have been a booster of Trump over Clinton in early June of 2016, according to a post on his Facebook page at the time.
''Trump looks slightly more promising,'' Kosachev wrote. ''At least, he is capable of giving a shake to Washington. He is certainly a pragmatist and not a missionary like his main opponent [Hillary] Clinton.''
The Prague meeting would have occurred during a period when Trump advisers had become jittery about publicity swirling around the campaign's Russian connections and seemingly friendly posture toward Moscow, according to the dossier and a source familiar with the federal investigation.
Campaign chairman Paul Manafort resigned abruptly on Aug. 19, shortly after the revelation that he had received $12.7 million in secret consulting fees over five years from the pro-Russia Party of Regions in Ukraine. Manafort was instrumental in the 2010 election of pro-Russian president Viktor Yanukovych, who was ousted in early 2014 and fled to Moscow.
Another flap stemmed from a secretive maneuver at the Republican National Convention in July. Party officials weakened language in the 2016 Republican platform calling for a boost in U.S. military aid to support Ukraine's fight with Russian-backed separatists who invaded Eastern Ukraine and Crimea.
The dossier cited multiple sources as reporting that Kremlin officials also had grown edgy about the possible exposure of their secret ''active measures'' effort to defeat Clinton and help Trump. According to the dossier, Russian diplomat Mikhail Kalugin was brought home from Russia's embassy in Washington last August because he had played a key role in coordinating the cyber offensive. McClatchy quoted several Russia experts on Feb. 15 as saying they suspected Kalugin was an intelligence operative. Kalugin has denied any espionage activities.
Cohen's attendance at a Prague meeting like the one described in the dossier would have been a logical assignment for him; Trump had long used him to solve business and legal headaches, three Republican operatives who were close to the campaign said.
One source with close ties to the campaign said Cohen ''wanted a bigger and more formal role [in the campaign], but there were a lot of long knives out for him within the campaign and the larger GOP infrastructure in part because he was a Democrat and treated people horribly.''
Cohen was best known during the 2016 campaign for his testy interviews defending Trump. In one case, when an interviewer cited poor polling numbers for Trump. Cohen kept aggressively asking, ''Says who?''
Beginning last year, he took a hand in fundraising for the Republican National Committee and Trump's re-election campaign. Cohen was one of four co-chairs of a big fundraiser at the Trump International hotel in mid-2017 that raised about $10 million for the two committees. In April 2017, Cohen was named a national deputy finance chairman at the RNC, not long after his March announcement that he had officially registered as a Republican.
A millionaire with his own New York real estate holdings, Cohen has long had family and business ties to Ukraine. His wife is Ukrainian, and he has had ties to Ukrainian ethanol company. He also once ran a thriving taxi business.
Peter Stone is a McClatchy special correspondent
Here's Why You Should Be Skeptical Of That Michael Cohen Prague Story | The Daily Caller
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:03
McClatchy reporters Peter Stone and Greg Gordon rocked the political world Friday when they reported special counsel Robert Mueller has evidence Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, visited Prague in the summer of 2016.
The report appeared to confirm one of the infamous Trump-Russia dossier's key allegations: that Cohen met in Prague with a Kremlin official about Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. The development would be significant because Cohen has adamantly denied making the Prague trip.
But three days later, no other news outlet has confirmed the report, and there are reasons to be skeptical.
A spokesperson for the special counsel's office wouldn't comment on the Cohen-Prague story specifically, but told The Daily Caller News Foundation that ''many stories'' about the Russia investigation have been ''inaccurate.''
''What I have been telling all reporters is that many stories about our investigation have been inaccurate. Be very cautious about any source that claims to have knowledge about our investigation and dig deep into what they claim before reporting on it,'' the spokesperson said. ''If another outlet reports something, don't run with it unless you have your own sourcing to back it up.''
Benjamin Wittes, a fierce Trump critic and ally of former FBI Director James Comey, over the weekend urged caution towards the report, which he called ''a little too good.''
''The sourcing is relatively thin. It is sourced to two sources familiar with the matter, who are presumably not Mueller shop folks. It's not clear to me what the universe of people who would know this sort of thing from a distance looks like,'' Wittes wrote on Twitter.
''The story does not, actually, say that Michael Cohen was, in fact, in Prague at the relevant time. It says that Mueller's investigation has developed some evidence that he was in Prague. It gives no sense of how much evidence or what type of evidence'--or how credible it is,'' he added.
Cohen also reiterated his denial that he's visited Prague.
''Bad reporting, bad information and bad story by same reporter Peter Stone,'' he tweeted in response to the McClatchy piece. (RELATED: Michael Cohen Disputes Story That Mueller Has Evidence Of Prague Trip)
On at least three other occasions, Stone and Gordon have reported similarly explosive '-- but thinly-sourced '-- Trump-Russia stories that have failed to live up to the hype. All four stories cited the same sourcing: ''two sources familiar'' with the matters.
Stone and Gordon reported on March 20, 2017, that FBI investigators were probing whether right-wing news sites, including Breitbart and Infowars, assisted Russian cyber operations during the 2016 election.
The next day, Stone went on MSNBC and floated the ''possibility that some of these far right news sites might have actually in some way collaborated with Russia as it was endeavoring to unload this enormous cyber attack on the United States.'' He conceded the possibility the story won't ''pan out.''
To date, no other news outlet has confirmed that story.
In January, Stone and Gordon reported that Mueller was investigating whether Russian banker Alexander Torshin funneled money to the National Rifle Association to help Trump win the 2016 presidential election.
''The extent to which the FBI has evidence of money flowing from Torshin to the NRA, or of the NRA's participation in the transfer of funds, could not be learned,'' the report conceded.
Two days later, the two reporters came out with a second report tying the NRA to Russia. That report claimed Cleta Mitchell, a lawyer who worked for the NRA, ''had concerns about its ties to Russia and its possible involvement in channeling Russian funds into the 2016 elections to help Donald Trump.''
Mitchell cast doubt on both of McClatchy's NRA-Russia reports.
''Ms. Mitchell tells me she told McClatchy before publication that this was false, that she has spoken to no one about the NRA's actions in 2016, and that she believes the entire NRA-Russia story line is preposterous,'' Wall Street Journal columnist Kimberly Strassel wrote in a column excoriating the McClatchy reports.
''She asked the reporters to explain to whom she supposedly said this, when and in what context,'' Strassel wrote. ''They couldn't, but ran the story anyway. Ms. Mitchell calls it 'the quintessential definition of fake news.'''
Mitchell told TheDCNF that reporters from several outlets contacted her with the allegations about the NRA-Russia story.
''I know that someone was pitching the false story about me to multiple news outlets,'' she said, asserting that McClatchy is ''the only one who bit.''
''There was someone really peddling that false story,'' says Mitchell, a partner at the firm Foley & Lardner.
Gordon told TheDCNF he and Stone stand by their reports on NRA-Russia ties and investigations into Breitbart and Infowars. To date, no other news organization has confirmed those reports.
Follow Peter J. Hasson on Twitter @PeterJHasson and follow Chuck Ross @ChuckRossDC
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Mueller has evidence Michael Cohen traveled to Prague, report claims | US news | The Guardian
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:00
Robert Mueller has evidence that Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen traveled to Prague in 2016, refuting Cohen's claim that he never visited the Czech capital and bolstering the Christopher Steele intelligence dossier that first described the trip, McClatchy reported on Friday.
Investigators for Mueller, the special counsel in the Russia probe, have evidence Cohen entered the Czech Republic through Germany in late summer 2016, McClatchy reported, citing two unnamed sources.
The news agency said it was unclear whether Mueller's investigators have evidence that Cohen met with a prominent Russian, as the Steele dossier claimed.
Mueller is investigating alleged Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign. Russia has denied meddling in the election and Trump has said there was no collusion.
The special counsel and an attorney for Cohen did not immediately respond to requests for comment from Reuters or McClatchey.
But on Saturday he tweeted to repeat his denials that he had ever been to Prague:
Michael Cohen (@MichaelCohen212)Bad reporting, bad information and bad story by same reporter Peter Stone @McClatchyDC. No matter how many times or ways they write it, I have never been to Prague. I was in LA with my son. Proven! https://t.co/ra7nwjUA0X
April 14, 2018The dossier by former British intelligence agent Steele alleged that Cohen met in Prague with Russians with ties to Vladimir Putin.
Agents with the FBI raided Cohen's New York office and home this week, partly based on a referral from Mueller.
They were seeking information on payments made by Cohen to porn star Stormy Daniels, who has said she had sex with Trump in 2006, a person familiar with the matter said.
Investigators have also looked for a possible broader pattern of fraud, tax evasion, money laundering and other crimes in Cohen's private dealings, including his work for Trump and real estate purchased by Russian buyers, the person said.
Michael Cohen Prague visit? Why the allegation is so important for Trump - Vox
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 20:59
Did Trump lawyer Michael Cohen secretly visit Prague to meet with Russians in 2016? The future of Donald Trump's presidency could hinge on whether the answer to that question is yes.
That's because the claim that such a meeting happened is one of the most specific claims in Christopher Steele's dossier alleging collusion between the Trump team and Russia to influence the 2016 election '-- and because, since the very first day that dossier was publicly released, Cohen has adamantly denied taking any such trip, and Trump's team has relied on that denial to dispute the dossier's accuracy. ''I have never been to Prague in my life. #fakenews,'' Cohen tweeted on January 10, 2017, hours after the dossier was posted.
Yet a new report from McClatchy's Peter Stone and Greg Gordon claims that special counsel Robert Mueller has evidence that Cohen did, in fact, enter Prague through Germany at the height of the 2016 campaign, in ''August or early September.''
The McClatchy report is based on anonymous sources, and we don't yet know what the purported evidence is. It could still prove to be mistaken. Cohen himself reiterated his denial again Saturday morning, telling CNN, ''No, I have never been to Prague,'' and sending this tweet rebutting the story:
Bad reporting, bad information and bad story by same reporter Peter Stone @McClatchyDC. No matter how many times or ways they write it, I have never been to Prague. I was in LA with my son. Proven! https://t.co/ra7nwjUA0X
'-- Michael Cohen (@MichaelCohen212) April 14, 2018If the McClatchy report was accurate, it would utterly devastate one of the Trump team's leading arguments that there was no Trump-Russia collusion. That's because, to be blunt, there is no reason for Cohen to try to debunk the Steele dossier by lying and saying that he didn't visit Prague at all if he actually did, unless he was trying to cover up extremely serious wrongdoing that happened during that visit.
If Cohen did in fact visit Prague in 2016, but for innocuous reasons that Steele's sources twisted, he could have just said that at the time. Instead, he vociferously denied that he went to Prague at all. If that was false, there would be no reason for him to take that tack '-- unless he was trying to cover up something very serious and hoping to get away with it. (However, we should note again that the McClatchy report remains unconfirmed by other outlets at this point.)
Yet the story gets even weirder. Cohen has insisted since January 2017 that he's never been to Prague, but Mother Jones's David Corn writes that, a few months before that, Cohen told him he in fact was in Prague ''for one afternoon 14 years ago.'' So at the very least Cohen has been inconsistent on whether he's ever been to the city.
What the Steele dossier alleged about Michael Cohen visiting PragueThe Steele dossier, you will remember, was a months-long research project in which former MI6 agent Christopher Steele dug into Donald Trump's connections to Russia. Steele was paid by the firm Fusion GPS, which was paid by a lawyer for the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee.
The dossier, as publicly released, is a series of 17 reports written over six months, based on a plethora of sources, that allege deep and corrupt ties between Trump and Russian officials.
Cohen emerges as a major character in the final set of reports. In one dated October 19, 2016, Steele wrote (emphasis added):
Speaking in confidence to a longstanding compatriot friend in mid-October 2016, a Kremlin insider highlighted the importance of Republican presidential candidate Donald TRUMP's lawyer, Michael COHEN, in the ongoing secret liaison relationship between the New York tycoon's campaign and the Russian leadership. COHEN's role had grown following the departure of Paul MANNAFORT [sic] as TRUMP's campaign manager in August 2016. Prior to that MANNAFORT had led for the Trump side.
According to the Kremlin insider, COHEN now was heavily engaged in a cover up and damage limitation operation in the attempt to prevent the full details of TRUMP's relationship with Russia being exposed. In pursuit of this aim, COHEN had met secretly with several Russian Presidential Administration (PA) Legal Department officials in an EU country in August 2016. The immediate issues had been to contain further scandals involving MANNAFORT's commercial and political role in Russia/Ukraine and to limit the damage arising from exposure of former TRUMP foreign policy advisor, Carter PAGE's secret meetings with Russian leadership figures in Moscow the previous month. The overall objective had been ''to sweep it all under the carpet and make sure no connections could be fully established or proven.''
Then in a report dated the next day, October 20, Steele gave more specifics. He said Cohen's ''clandestine meeting'' with Russian officials was in Prague, and mentioned a Russian NGO, Rossotrudnichestvo, as a potential host for the meeting.
The final report in the published Steele dossier, dated December 13 (after Trump was elected president), reiterated the claim of a Cohen/Prague meeting '-- now saying it happened in August or September 2016 '-- and gave many more supposed specifics (emphasis added):
COHEN had been accompanied to Prague by 3 colleagues and the timing of the visit was either in the last week of August or the first week of September. One of their main Russian interlocutors was Oleg SOLODUKHIN operating under Rossotrudnichestvo cover. According to [redacted], the agenda comprised questions on how deniable cash payments were to be made to hackers who had worked in Europe under Kremlin direction against the CLINTON campaign and various contingencies for covering up these operations and Moscow's secret liaison with the TRUMP team more generally.
The report claims that Cohen discussed how to destroy evidence of this purported hacking operation in the event of a Clinton victory.
These are, of course, highly inflammatory claims that a Trump Organization executive and lawyer was collaborating closely with Russian government officials regarding paying hackers who had worked against the Clinton campaign in some way. But for 15 months after the dossier's publication, no evidence emerged that this had actually taken place.
Cohen immediately tried to use the ''Prague visit'' claim to debunk the dossierOn January 10, 2017 '-- 10 days before Donald Trump's inauguration '-- CNN reported that Trump had been briefed on the claims of the Steele dossier, and BuzzFeed News subsequently published the dossier itself.
Some time went by without any comment from Trump's teams on the shocking allegations. And then Michael Cohen spoke up:
Immediately, many observed it was strange that Cohen attempted to debunk the dossier by tweeting a picture of the cover of his passport, rather than its interior. Additionally, since Prague is in the European Union's Schengen Area, which allows passport-free travel between countries, he could theoretically have gotten an initial entry stamp from any EU country, not just the Czech Republic. It's also possible for one person to have multiple passports.
But the claim that Cohen visited Prague was a very specific one that showed up in a few different dossier reports. If it in fact was wrong, it would discredit the dossier as a whole (though there are many different sources quoted in the dossier, and even if many are accurate, it's possible that others are wrong). Most importantly, Cohen deliberately chose to make a denial that he visited Prague his main argument in disputing the dossier.
A few months later, in May 2017, Cohen decided to share more. BuzzFeed News asked to see the inside of his passport, so he showed it to Anthony Cormier, a reporter for the site. The provided passport revealed just one trip inside the Schengen Area '-- to Italy, in July, which doesn't quite match the timeline laid out in the dossier. Cohen claimed to them that this was his only passport. And for several months afterward, that is where things remained.
Now, the new McClatchy report by Stone and Gordon claims Mueller has evidence that Cohen ''secretly made a late-summer trip to Prague.'' They write that, per their anonymous sources, ''investigators have traced evidence that Cohen entered the Czech Republic through Germany, apparently during August or early September of 2016, as the ex-spy reported.''
If Stone and Gordon are right, it of course wouldn't tell us what Cohen actually did in Prague. Yet it would raise enormous questions about why he would have lied so brazenly about the trip, and made that lie the centerpiece of the Trump team's efforts to discredit the Steele dossier. It's very difficult indeed to think of an innocent explanation for why Cohen '-- whose office was raided by the FBI this week '-- would have done so.
Another possibility, though, is that Cohen's denial of a Prague visit is in fact technically correct, but misleading in some respect '-- after all, his denials have been very specific to the city of Prague itself, which would seem to leave open the possibility of a similar meeting to the one alleged that took place in some other nearby city or town.
Finally, it's also possible that Cohen is on the level here, and both Steele's dossier and the new McClatchy report are just flat-out wrong. Suffice to say, though, we haven't heard the last of this topic.
InfoWars' Alex Jones and Marco Rubio nearly come to blows in the Senate - Vox
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 19:54
Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones had a tense exchange in the Senate hallway during a break of the Senate Intelligence Committee's hearing with Facebook and Twitter leaders on Wednesday. Jones, who sat in on the hearing, crashed a scrum Rubio was holding with reporters, and the pair nearly came to blows.
Jones, an alt-right figure with a broad reach online, has complained that social media sites have censored him after multiple platforms, including Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter, banned or removed his content. He attended Wednesday's hearing, he said, to ''face his accusers,'' and during the break he approached Rubio while the senator was addressing reporters and broke into Rubio's comments repeatedly.
Jones pushed the senator to address concerns that conservative and far-right voices are being silenced online. At first, Rubio tried to ignore Jones and talked over him. Jones called him a ''frat boy'' and a ''snake.'' Jones also plugged his website, Infowars.com.
Rubio laughed him off, saying he didn't know who Jones was '-- until Jones made physical contact, apparently touching him on the shoulder.
Heated exchange between Rubio and Alex Jones in the Senate hallway '-- Jones crashes a Rubio interview and touches Rubio's shoulder. Rubio tells Jones not touch him again, says he'll "take care of you myself" rather than calling the police.
'-- Will Sommer (@willsommer) September 5, 2018''Don't touch me again, man. I'm asking you not to touch me,'' Rubio said.
''Well, sure, I just patted you nicely,'' Jones said.
''I know, but I don't want to be touched,'' Rubio said. ''I don't know who you are.''
Jones talked over him, saying he wanted him to be arrested, and Rubio said he didn't know who Jones was.
''You're not going to get arrested, man. You're not going to get arrested; I'll take care of you myself,'' Rubio said.
Jones, surprised, looked at reporters and said, ''Oh, he'll beat me up.'' He told Rubio he wasn't ''going to silence me'' and called him ''a little gangster thug.''
Cassandra Fairbanks, another far-right personality, captured the exchange on Periscope, the streaming service Twitter owns.
Wow, this video. Alex JONES calls RUBIO a "frat boy" and touches Rubio on the shoulder. Rubio tells Jones not to touch him and that he won't be arrested because I'll "take care of you myself."https://t.co/AGRMrDBMGa
'-- Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) September 5, 2018It was a bizarre moment, but also a symbolic one: Rubio is a ''reform conservative'' who's perpetually trying to change the subject from President Donald Trump to talk about policy. Jones is a far-right conspiracy theorist whose show hosted Trump during his campaign for the Republican nomination. But the contrast between the two styles on the right usually doesn't almost come to blows.
Jones, fellow alt-right activist Laura Loomer, and internet troll Chuck Johnson all attended the hearing, which featured Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, apparently in an attempt to draw attention to themselves and the fact that they've been banned from social media platforms for violating their rules. (Vox's Jane Coaston has a complete explainer on Jones being banned from tech platforms.)
Inside the hearing, their behavior was tame; outside, as Jones's exchange with Rubio shows, not so much.
Rubio later described the experience, saying he saw ''some scrubby guy walk up to me'' and start ''acting all crazy.'' He said he knew of Jones, just not what he looked like.
Sen. Marco Rubio describes being heckled by Alex Jones outside Senate hearing room this morning: "I see some scrubby guy walk up to me, step to me, acting all crazy. I didn't know who he was. I know the name, I know all the crazy stuff, I just don't know what he looks like."
'-- Alex Bolton (@alexanderbolton) September 5, 2018He also questioned the amount of press coverage Jones and others on the far right get. ''I know you've got to cover them, but you give these guys way too much attention,'' he said. ''We're making crazy people superstars. So, we [are] going to get crazier people.''
BBC NEWS | Programmes | Newsnight | Miller 'sorry' for WMD inaccuracies
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:23
Despite apologising Ms Miller insisted she was right to publish
Judith Miller, the US journalist at the heart of the CIA leak probe, has apologised to her readers because her stories about WMD and Iraq turned out to be wrong.Ms Miller, who spent 85 days in prison over the summer before agreeing to give evidence to a grand jury investigating the outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame, made the apology during an exclusive interview for BBC Newsnight.
She said: "I am obviously deeply chagrined that I ever write anything that turns out to be incorrect. I'm deeply sorry that the stories were wrong."
The journalist also confirmed that former senior White House aide Lewis "Scooter" Libby was one of her sources who revealed that Ms Plame was employed by the CIA.
She claims Mr Libby did not out Ms Plame as a covert agent, but as someone who worked for the CIA. Ms Miller said she assumed that Ms Plame was an analyst, not an operative.Mr Libby denies any wrongdoing.
Sources
When pressed to confirm or deny that President George W Bush's senior adviser Karl Rove was another source, she declined to do so, saying: "I can't talk about the specifics of this case as I might be a witness in a criminal trial."
Lewis "Scooter" Libby has pleaded not guilty to charges including perjury and obstruction of justice
Although Ms Miller apologised for the intelligence being incorrect she defended her journalism saying she was right to publish and had done everything she could to verify the facts. She said: "I'm deeply sorry our intelligence community got it wrong."I am deeply sorry that the President was given a national intelligence estimate which concluded that Saddam Hussein had biological and chemical weapons and a active weapons programme."
Wider implications
She defended printing the stories, claiming she had checked claims about Iraq and WMD with independent experts and had included caveats within her stories about the sources for her information.
The journalist also voiced concerns about the implications of the failure of intelligence for the wider, so-called "War on Terror".
"I think it's a terrible failure, it's a shocking failure, it's a deeply troubling failure, because if we didn't know about Iraq, what do we really know about the programmes of Iran or North Korea or Syria or what al-Qaeda is up to?"
The full interview with Judith Miller will be broadcast by Newsnight on BBC Two at 2230 GMT on Wednesday, 30 November, 2005.
You can also watch the programme via Newsnight's website.
BBC NEWS: VIDEO AND AUDIO
Watch Newsnight's exclusive interview with Judith Miller
Judith Miller "Apologizes" for Fatally-Flawed WMD Stories, With Big Caveats | HuffPost
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:22
Choosing the BBC as her chosen across-the-pond outlet, Judith Miller has seemingly apologized to her former NYT readers for a ''handful'' of her stories about WMD and Iraq'--''before the war''--that turned out to be wrong. She was interviewed for BBC Newsnight on November 30. There follows a review of the full text.
Her sackcloth and ashes act was confined to: "I am obviously deeply chagrined that I ever write anything that turns out to be incorrect. I'm deeply sorry that the stories were wrong." On WMD, she reported only ''what I believed to be right at the time.'' She ''accurately reported'' the intelligence information that ''the White House'' was receiving, and that it provided to her. In answer to the charge of stenography journalism, serving as a front-page conduit for whatever she was told by Bush Administration sources, her unconvincing defense on BBC was: ''If your sources are wrong, you are going to be wrong. The answer is more reporting,'' not editors' notes. But, of course, the more she reported from the Iraqi desert, once the war began, the more wrong she was!
As in the past, there were big caveats and inconsistencies in Miller's duplicitous tale. ''I did not write stories to justify the war,'' but to answer questions about Saddam's possession of WMD. Acting the sincere innocent, she insisted that she had done everything she could ''to evaluate the accuracy of the information'' she reported. She ran intelligence reports by the UN inspection force'--''they were quoted on the record'' as saying they agreed or disagreed'--and by ''independent weapons experts.'' ''Not a single story'' was based entirely on anonymous sources.
In her reporting of "six or seven" flawed pre-war stories on WMD, Ahmad Chalabi'--the INC leader'--had ''supplied only two individuals'' as sources. [Never mind that she had once told John Burns, The Times Baghdad bureau chief, that most of the front-page WMD "scoops" prior to the war were due to Chalabi.] ''I always identified where the information was coming from.''
Following the lead of the Bush White House in assigning blame for wholesale errors in WMD intelligence, Miller put the monkey on the CIA's back in the BBC interview: "I'm deeply sorry our intelligence community got it wrong. I am deeply sorry that the President was given a national intelligence estimate (NIE) which concluded that Saddam Hussein had biological and chemical weapons and an active (nuclear) weapons program."
When Judith Miller washes her hands of responsibility in misinforming the public on the road to war in 2002-2003, she would wash the hands of the neo-cons in Vice President Cheney's office and in the Pentagon. Incidentally, don't look for her to do anything but try to help Scooter Libby in his defense in the Plame case.
Judith Miller's WMD reporting - New York Times war reporting - Hunt for WMD
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:22
Judith Miller discusses post-Saddam Iraq on
The NewsHour With Jim Lehrer.
(Photo: The NewsHour With Jim Lehrer)
F or critics of the Iraq war, the downfall of Ahmad Chalabi occasioned a hearty, unapologetic outpouring of Schadenfreude'--a loud cheer for a well-deserved knee to the administration's gut. In fact, it was possible to detect a bit of this spirit on the front page of the New York Times. On May 21, the editors arrayed contrasting images of the banker turned freedom fighter turned putative Iranian spy. Here he is smirking behind Laura Bush in the House of Representatives gallery as the president delivers his State of the Union address. There he is looking bleary and sweaty, after Iraqi police stormed his home and office in the middle of the night. An analysis by David Sanger went so far as to name names of individuals who had associated themselves with the discredited leader of the Iraqi National Congress. The list, he wrote, included ''many of the men who came to dominate the top ranks of the Bush administration . . . Donald H. Rumsfeld, Paul D. Wolfowitz, Douglas J. Feith, Richard L. Armitage, Elliott Abrams and Zalmay M. Khalilzad, among others.''
The phrase ''among others'' is a highly evocative one. Because that list of credulous Chalabi allies could include the New York Times' own reporter, Judith Miller. During the winter of 2001 and throughout 2002, Miller produced a series of stunning stories about Saddam Hussein's ambition and capacity to produce weapons of mass destruction, based largely on information provided by Chalabi and his allies'--almost all of which have turned out to be stunningly inaccurate.
For the past year, the Times has done much to correct that coverage, publishing a series of stories calling Chalabi's credibility into question. But never once in the course of its coverage'--or in any public comments from its editors'--did the Times acknowledge Chalabi's central role in some of its biggest scoops, scoops that not only garnered attention but that the administration specifically cited to buttress its case for war.
The longer the Times remained silent on Chalabi's importance to Judith Miller's reporting, the louder critics howled. In February, in the New York Review of Books, Michael Massing held up Miller as evidence of the press's ''submissiveness'' in covering the war. For more than a year, Slate's Jack Shafer has demanded the paper come clean.
But finally, with Chalabi's fall from grace so complete'--the Pentagon has cut off his funding, troops smashed his portrait in raids of the INC office'--the Times' refusal to concede its own complicity became untenable. Last week, on page A10, the paper published a note on its coverage, drafted by executive editor Bill Keller himself. The paper singled out pieces that relied on ''information from a circle of Iraqi informants, defectors, and exiles bent on 'regime change.' '' The note named Ahmad Chalabi as a central player in this group.
This time, however, the omission of Judith Miller's name was conspicuous. ''Some critics of our coverage during that time have focused blame on individual reporters. Our examination, however, indicates that the problem was more complicated.''
''It was precisely her unpleasant aggressiveness that helped force the story'--the marriage of WMD and global jihadists'--closer to the top of the agenda.''
The editor's note was correct: The Judy Miller problem is complicated. That is, the very qualities that endeared Miller to her editors at the New York Times'--her ambition, her aggressiveness, her cultivation of sources by any means necessary, her hunger to be first'--were the same ones that allowed her to get the WMD story so wrong.
Miller is a star, a diva. She wrote big stories, won big prizes. Long before her WMD articles ran, Miller had become a newsroom legend'--and for reasons that had little to do with the stories that appeared beneath her byline. With her seemingly bottomless ambition'--a pair of big feet that would stomp on colleagues in her way and even crunch a few bystanders'--she cut a larger-than-life figure that lent itself to Paul Bunyan''esque retellings. Most of these stories aren't kind. Of course, nobody said journalism was a country club. And her personality was immaterial while she was succeeding, winning a Pulitzer, warning the world about terrorism, bio-weapons, and Iraq's war machine. But now, who she is, and why she prospered, makes for a revealing cautionary tale about the culture of American journalism.
O n a summer afternoon in the early eighties, Judy Miller invited her exercise-averse boyfriend Richard Burt, then the Times' defense reporter, to watch her swim laps in the Washington Hilton pool. Afterward, lounging in the sun, Miller veered into one of her favorite lines of conversation: Does chemical or nuclear warfare inflict the most damage? Burt, who would go on to become an assistant secretary of State in the Reagan administration, has a serious cast of mind. But even he was taken aback by Miller's dark thoughts. ''I remember being struck that there are not many people sitting around on a beautiful day thinking about weapons of mass destruction,'' he says.
Miller's dramatic way of looking at the world may have something to do with her family's show-business background. During the forties and fifties, her father, Bill Miller, ran the Riviera nightclub in Fort Lee, New Jersey. Famed for its retractable roof, the Riviera staged shows by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Tito Puente. When the state highway commission ordered the Riviera condemned in 1953, Miller made his way to Vegas, proving his impresario bona fides by reviving the careers of Elvis Presley and Marlene Dietrich.
Judy Miller arrived in the Times' Washington bureau in 1977, as part of a new breed of hungry young hires, prodded in part by the sting of losing the Watergate story to Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein of the Washington Post. ''She was unlike the other guys there. That's why they brought her to the paper,'' says Steven Rattner, another old boyfriend, who eventually left his Times gig to become an investment banker.
Installed amid colleagues'--they were almost all men'--who'd spent decades working their way up the paper's food chain, Miller stood out immediately for her sharp elbows. While the culture of the paper assiduously practices omert '--what happens in the newsroom stays in the newsroom'--Miller is cause for reporters to break the code of silence. An unusual number of her co-workers have gone out of their way to separate themselves and their paper from Miller. Few are brave enough to attach their names to the stories, but they all sound a similar refrain. ''She's a shit to the people she works with,'' says one. ''When I see her coming, my instinct is to go the other way,'' says another. They recite her foibles and peccadilloes, from getting temporarily banned by the Times' D.C. car service for her rudeness to throwing a fit over rearranged items on her desk. Defenders are few and far between. And even the staunchest ones often concede her faults. Bill Keller told me in an e-mail, ''She has sharp elbows. She is possessive of her sources, and passionate about her stories, and a little obsessive. If you interview people who have worked with Sy Hersh, I'll bet you'll find some of the same complaints.''
Chuck Todd: It's Time for the Press to Fight Back - The Atlantic
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:06
A nearly 50-year campaign of vilification, inspired by Fox News's Roger Ailes, has left many Americans distrustful of media outlets. Now, journalists need to speak up for their work.
Sep 3, 2018 Contributing editor at The Atlantic and moderator of Meet the Press
Fred Prouser / ReutersI've devoted much of my professional life to the study of political campaigns, not as a historian or an academic but as a reporter and an analyst. I thought I'd seen it all, from the bizarre upset that handed a professional wrestler the governorship of Minnesota to the California recall that gave us the Governator to candidates who die but stay on the ballot and win.
But there's a new kind of campaign underway, one that most of my colleagues and I have never publicly reported on, never fully analyzed, and never fully acknowledged: the campaign to destroy the legitimacy of the American news media.
Bashing the media for political gain isn't new, and neither is manipulating the media to support or oppose a cause. These practices are at least as old as the Gutenberg press. But antipathy toward the media right now has risen to a level I've never personally experienced before. The closest parallel in recent American history is the hostility to reporters in the segregated South in the 1950s and '60s.
Then, as now, that hatred was artificially stoked by people who found that it could deliver them some combination of fame, wealth, and power.
Some of the wealthiest members of the media are not reporters from mainstream outlets. Figures such as Rush Limbaugh, Matt Drudge, and the trio of Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson, and Laura Ingraham have attained wealth and power by exploiting the fears of older white people. They are thriving financially by exploiting the very same free-press umbrella they seem determined to undermine.
Much of the current hand-wringing about this rise in press bashing and delegitimization has been focused on the president, who'--as every reporter in America sadly knows'--has declared the press the ''enemy of the people.'' But, like much else in the Trump era, Donald Trump didn't start this fire; he's only spread it to a potentially more dangerous place.
The modern campaign against the American press corps has its roots in the Nixon era. President Richard Nixon's angry foot soldiers continued his fight against the media even after he left office.
Roger Ailes, who went on to help found Fox News, was the most important of those figures. His sustained assault on the press created the conditions that would allow a president to surround himself with aides who argue for ''alternative facts,'' and announce that ''truth isn't truth.'' Without Ailes, a man of Trump's background and character could never have won. Roger Ailes was the godfather of the Trump presidency.
Nixon's acolytes blamed the press for drumming a good man out of office. From their perspective, his crimes were no different from the misdeeds of the Kennedys or Lyndon B. Johnson'--but only Nixon was held to account. Did they blame this on Nixon? On the voters? No, they blamed the stars of the Watergate drama, the heroes of All the President's Men. They blamed the media.
Enter Roger Ailes. He first made his name by taking credit for Nixon's rise in Joe McGinniss's campaign book, The Selling of the President 1968. Ailes was a media genius who understood better than most how to use television to move people. There's a fine line between motivating people through TV messages and simply manipulating them. Ailes's gift, and the secret to his success, was his comfort in plunging across that line and embracing the role of TV manipulator.
He made his name as a political TV-ad man, one of the pioneers of the field, but he couldn't help dabbling in news and talk. As a network programmer, Ailes excelled at matching a mood with an audience. From Mike Douglas to Limbaugh to, later, Chris Matthews and Bill O'Reilly, Ailes had a gift for promoting engaging, smart, man-of-the-people talkers.
In the early '90s, while he was president of CNBC, Ailes had a hunch that an evening lineup catering to a culturally conservative audience would thrive. He wanted to give his theory a chance, but he was passed over for the leadership of the network's new channel, MSNBC. Enter Rupert Murdoch. The mogul bought into Ailes's theory, and in 1996 they launched Fox News with the slogan ''Fair and balanced.''
From the very beginning, Ailes signaled that Fox News would offer an alternative voice, splitting with the conventions of television journalism. Take the word balanced. It sounded harmless enough. But how does one balance facts? A reporting-driven news organization might promise to be accurate, or honest, or comprehensive, or to report stories for an underserved community. But Ailes wasn't building a reporting-driven news organization. The promise to be ''balanced'' was a coded pledge to offer alternative explanations, putting commentary ahead of reporting; it was an attack on the integrity of the rest of the media. Fox intended to build its brand the same way Ailes had built the brands of political candidates: by making the public hate the other choice more.
Ailes's greatest gift as a political strategist lay not in making his clients more electable, but in making their opponents unelectable. His last formal presidential campaign was in 1988. Then''Vice President George H. W. Bush was on his way to defeat when Ailes helped orchestrate a devastating campaign against Michael Dukakis, exploiting a series of superficial issues that touched many voters' cultural beliefs and fears about everything from the Pledge of Allegiance to furloughs for violent felons. Ailes helped destroy Dukakis by making him seem an other to many Americans.
Fox News adopted a similar strategy, rarely showcasing its own reporting or journalism. There are some great journalists at Fox, including Chris Wallace, Bret Baier, and Shep Smith, but it's not an organization that emphasizes journalism. Instead, Ailes created an organization that focuses on attacking the ''liberal media'' whose ''liberal bias'' was ruining America. Almost any big story that was potentially devastating to a conservative was ''balanced'' with some form of whataboutism. The Ailes construction has been so effective that these days, I often get mail from viewers who say: Now that you've focused on all of President Trump's misdeeds, you are biased if you don't dedicate the same amount of time to Hillary Clinton's misdeeds. It seems completely lost on this segment of the population that one person is the leader of the free world, and the other is a retiree living in the suburbs of New York City. Because journalists report on new and controversial ideas all the time, it's not uncommon for us to be accused of championing an idea'--think of same-sex marriage'--that some members of our audience find objectionable. Letting folks know that a movement is afoot, and documenting its successes and failures, is our job. But Ailes exploited the public's lack of knowledge of journalistic conventions, portraying reports about social change as advocacy for such change. He played up cultural fears, creating the mythology of a biased press.
Reporters, I fully acknowledge, bring their own biases to their work. The questions they ask, and the stories they pursue, are shaped by things as simple as geography. I grew up in Miami; I follow Cuban politics more closely than many other Americans did. As a result, when I covered the White House, I was more likely than my colleagues to ask questions about Cuba. A New York''based reporter may approach reporting on guns, or on evangelical Christianity, differently than a reporter in Pensacola, Florida.
The charge of media bias can encompass a great many different problems. Critics, for example, may be pointing to the way that certain journalists pay more attention to some issues than to others, or complaining about the unquestioned assumptions reflected in journalists' work. These are real issues, and most journalists labor to correct them. At the other extreme, critics may be accusing journalists of having deliberately and consciously shaped their reporting to serve some political end. That sort of overt bias is far rarer. Ironically, the best example of this kind of bias airs regularly in prime time on Fox News.
But this was the genius of Roger Ailes. He didn't sweat the nuance; he exploited it. Errors of omission and commission, inadvertent inattention and willful disregard, unconscious assumptions and deliberate distortions'--Ailes collapsed all of it into the single charge of bias.
And what did we reporters do in the face of this cable onslaught that would eventually turn into a social-media virus and lead us to the election of the most fact-free presidential candidate in American history? Nothing.
We did nothing, because we were trained to say nothing. Good reporters know that they have to let the chips fall where they may, and that criticism comes with the gig. We know that the loudest squealers are usually the ones we've exposed doing something untoward'--and that eventually they'll get theirs.
''Don't engage'' is a phrase I've heard internally at NBC over the decade I've been here. And ''Don't engage'' was a mantra that I actually believed in. I embraced it. On most days, I still want to believe that eventually, the truth will matter. That eventually, folks will see through the silly name-calling and recognize good reporting.
In fact, we not only failed to defend our work in real time from this onslaught; we helped accelerate the campaign to delegitimize the American press corps. From unforced errors by high-profile anchors to the biggest missed news story of the 21st century'--the lack of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq'--we have handed critics some lethal ammunition. There's not a serious journalist alive who hasn't had one of those ''gulp'' moments when you realize that you really messed up. But serious journalists correct the record, serious journalistic organizations allow themselves to be held to account, own up to mistakes, and learn from them so they can do a better job the next time. I'm fully aware that some entity will try to tarnish this piece simply because I work at a news organization that, yes'--gasp'--has made mistakes. Here's what comforts me: The record is there for all to see. The same can't be said for the manipulators who aren't playing by any set of serious journalistic rules.
The American press corps finds itself on the ropes because it allowed a nearly 50-year campaign of attacks inspired by the chair of Fox News to go unanswered.
If you hear something over and over again, you start to believe it, particularly if the charge is unrebutted. The Trump team now keeps pounding this message, compounding the challenge. And the president faces little penalty with his voters, no matter how disparagingly he talks about the press corps; it's precisely what Ailes conditioned them to believe.
For me, idle death threats are now the norm. (I don't take them seriously, because if I did, I'd never feel at peace.) But forget the personal animus or safety issues reporters now face. American democracy requires a functioning press that informs voters and creates a shared set of facts. If journalists are going to defend the integrity of their work, and the role it plays in sustaining democracy, we're going to need to start fighting back.
The idea that our work will speak for itself is hopelessly naive. Fox, Limbaugh, and the rest of the Trump echo chamber have proved that. Meanwhile, even in Ailes's absence, Fox seems more comfortable than ever pushing the limits of responsible behavior by a supposed news organization. It recently allowed a sitting state attorney general to co-host a show for three days. The network effectively gave a GOP candidate for Florida governor nearly unfettered access to its airwaves during his primary campaign, providing a more significant boost than any super PAC can offer. The fact that so few viewers batted an eye shows how conditioned they have become to the network's unique ethical standards.
Does this mean that other cable-news networks should follow Fox News's lead and become advocates? That's not the answer. Newspapers did this in the early 19th century, when they operated as arms of the political parties. And while American democracy survived, the polarization of the early republic produced threats, brandished weapons, and even open violence on the floors of Congress with shocking regularity.
Instead of attacking rivals, or assailing critics'--going negative,in the parlance of political campaigns'--reporters need to showcase and defend our reporting. Every day, we need to do our job, check our facts, strive to be transparent, and say what we're seeing. That's what I've tried to do here. I've seen a nearly 50-year campaign to delegitimize the press, and I'm saying so. For years, I didn't say a word about this publicly, and at times I even caught myself drawing false equivalencies because I was afraid of being labeled as biased. I know that stating the obvious will draw attacks, but I've also learned that the louder critics bark, the more they care about what's being reported.
I'm not advocating for a more activist press in the political sense, but for a more aggressive one. That means having a lower tolerance for talking points, and a greater willingness to speak plain truths. It means not allowing ourselves to be spun, and not giving guests or sources a platform to spin our readers and viewers, even if that angers them. Access isn't journalism's holy grail'--facts are.
The truth is that most journalists, in newsrooms large and small across the country, are doing their best each day to be fair, honest, and direct. These values are what Americans demand of one another, and it should be what they demand of their media. The challenge for viewers and readers is this: Ask yourself why someone is so determined to convince you not to believe your lying eyes.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.
Chuck Todd is a contributing editor at
The Atlantic. He is the moderator of
Meet the Press and the political director of NBC News.
Car Ramming Attack on Dallas Fox Affiliate After 'Meet the Press' Host Says to 'Fight Back' Against Fox News | Trending
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:04
A man rammed his truck into the studios of Dallas Fox affiliate KDFW earlier this morning, just two days after Meet the Press host Chuck Todd published an article calling on his media colleagues to "start fighting back" against Fox News.
A man crashed a truck into the side of our building this morning. He jumped out and started ranting. He's in custody now but the bomb squad is on its way. He left behind a suspicious bag. Most have been evacuated & a few are working to keep the news on air from a secure location. pic.twitter.com/X3UpLbYk85
'-- FOX 4 NEWS (@FOX4) September 5, 2018 KDFW reports on the incident targeting their offices:
A man was arrested Wednesday morning after crashing a truck into the side of the FOX4 building in downtown Dallas.The man, after repeatedly crashing his vehicle into a side of the building with floor to ceiling windows, got out of his vehicle and began ranting.
FOX4 photojournalists were able to film him placing numerous boxes next to a sidedoor filled with stacks of paper. The papers were also strewn across the sidewalk and street adjacent to the building.
The man ranted about "high treason" and also mentioned a sheriff's department.
The Dallas police bomb squad was dispatched to investigate a bag the man had left at the scene.
KDFW reports that all personnel were inside the building at the time, and no one from the station was injured.
This car ramming attack comes just after NBC host Chuck Todd published an article on Monday at The Atlantic calling for others to "start fighting back" against Fox News.
https://pjmedia.com/trending/car-ramming-attack-on-dallas-fox-affiliate-after-meet-the-press-host-calls-to-fight-back-against-fox-news/
Apple Watch remains best-selling wearable with 4.7 million shipments last quarter - The Verge
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 15:10
Apple maintained its position at the top of the smartwatch sales chart last quarter, selling 4.7 million Apple Watches and capturing 17 percent of the global market, according to a report published today by research firm IDC. Apple now remains just ahead of Xiaomi, which trailed Apple by two percentage points in market share and 500,000 unit shipments in the second quarter of the year.
Fitbit, Huawei, and Garmin are far behind, with IDC reporting that higher demand for more fully featured smartwatches is driving demand for Apple products and reducing the popularity of lower-cost fitness trackers. IDC stresses that this is a natural cycle for consumer electronics and that fitness-focused devices will still have a place in the market going forward.
Apple and Xiaomi are far and away the wearable market leaders
''Basic wearables have been in decline over the past several quarters, but that does not mean that they no longer have a place in the market,'' writes Ramon T. Llamas, IDC's wearables research director. ''There still exists multiple market segments who prefer simple and inexpensive wearable devices and this is where wrist-worn fitness trackers and hybrid watches are finding demand.''
This data doesn't point to an especially new revelation, as smartwatches have come to dominate the wearables category that was first popularized by simple fitness bands from Fitbit, Jawbone, and others. But it does illustrate Apple's substantial impact on the wearables market, which it first entered in 2015. It also points to why the company continues to iterate on the Apple Watch and release new versions of the hardware every year, just as it eventually settled into an annual cadence for its smartphones and tablets.
IDC says demand for its LTE-equipped Series 3 device largely drove Apple's wearable sales last quarter, and the device received a number of discounts at big-box retail stores that may have led to a surge in consumer purchases. Refurbished versions of the Apple Watch Series 3 also went up for sale on Apple's retail site starting in February.
Next week, Apple is expected to release the Apple Watch Series 4. Leaked images indicate that the product will have a larger display and more intricate complications. The event, which will also focus on a new slate of iPhones and the company's fall software refreshes, is scheduled for Wednesday, September 12th.
Sam Sweeney on Twitter: "BREAKING: An Emirates A380 in quarantine at JFK Airport right now awaiting CDC officials after about 100 passengers became ill with fevers over 100 degrees and coughing. Flight 203 had just arrived from Dubai.'... https://t.co/IFF8
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 14:52
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sheryl sandberg nose job - Bing images
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 14:50
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Man Repeatedly Crashes Truck Into Dallas TV Station Building - The New York Times
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 14:18
Image The police arrested a man who rammed a pickup truck into the Fox 4 television station's building in downtown Dallas. Credit Credit WFAA, via YouTube A man repeatedly rammed a pickup truck into the building of a Dallas television station on Wednesday morning, shattering glass and causing papers to scatter, in what the station described as an intentional act.
After crashing into several floor-to-ceiling windows in the downtown Dallas building, the man exited the truck and ''started ranting,'' according to the station, KDFW-TV, a Fox affiliate. No one was hurt and the driver is in custody, the station said.
A video from the station showed the man tossing paper into the air and stacking documents outside a door to the building.
''We just saw police running inside and saying, 'Get to the other side of the building,''' Shannon Murray, a reporter who was inside the newsroom at the time of the crash, said on the station's morning news show. ''It wasn't clear what the man's intentions were. He was yelling and trying to show us something.''
Another reporter at the station, Brandon Todd, recorded video on his cellphone of the man holding handwritten notes and photos up to a window at the television station. Mr. Todd said on air that he could not understand everything the man was saying or what was written on the documents, but the man mentioned a sheriff's department and said that someone had been injured.
''He kept yelling, 'High treason!''' Mr. Todd said. ''He believed he had been clearly wronged and was trying to get some attention.''
Photos that KDFW shared on Twitter showed a police officer holding the man on the ground outside the truck. The Dallas Police Department did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
The crash occurred shortly before 7 a.m. during the broadcast of KDFW's morning news show, and the station said most employees had been evacuated while it continued to broadcast from a secure location. The police blocked off several streets around the building while officers investigated the contents of a bag that the man left at the scene, the station said.
Letter to the German Press, by Jay Rosen
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 14:10
I have been circulating among you since the first day of June, asking strange questions. Now it is time for me to tell you what I learned about your institution, and its current predicament.
My research project for the summer was to answer this question: What is German pressthink, and how does it differ from the American kind? (I had a fellowship at the
Bosch Foundation that allowed me to do that, while living in Berlin.) 'žPressthink'' is a term I invented, so don't try to look it up. It means the common sense of the journalism profession, the way your occupation 'žthinks'' about its task. But also the ideas German society has about what a free press is for.
Pressthink in the U.S. For thirty years I have been writing about pressthink in the United States '' and criticizing the performance of American journalists when I thought they needed that. My method for studying German pressthink was to talk to people here and try to make sense of what they told me. Early in my fellowship I was interviewed by Deutschlandradio Kultur, and they asked me: how will you know if your findings are scientifically correct?
Actually, I don't know. This is an open letter to German journalists, not a research paper for my academic colleagues. Where I am wrong, someone in Germany will probably tell me, and my
Twitter feed will light up with complaints. I'm ready for that.
These thoughts are based on the 53 interviews I did for this project (List
here .) I tried to talk to people who were differently placed around the German press. I interviewed bosses and workers in German newsrooms. I talked to trainees and freelancers, teachers of journalists and professors who study the German media. Because I am interested in institutions '' which are 'žfrozen thought'' '' I went to the Press Council in Berlin, and the programming council (the oversight body) for one of the regional public broadcasters,
RBB . I talked to New German Media Makers (Neue deutsche Medienmacher), an activist group that is trying to change German journalism. I interviewed two former editors of Bild, and the founder of a watch blog about Bild. And many others.
Here is what I found.
There are five pillars of German pressthink. The first is freedom of the press, same as in the United States. Government should keep its hands off. The second pillar is that some things are more important than the right to publish: privacy, victim's rights, and preventing hate speech, for example. These things have far more weight than they do in the US.
The third pillar is that broadcasting is too important, it has too much influence to be left to the market or the state. Standing between market and state is Germany's public broadcasting system, with a mission to help citizens form their own opinions based on knowledge, rather than propaganda. It has a decentralized structure and a dedicated funding source, the license fee ('‚¬17.50 a month) that some Germans resent paying. Would they rather have
Fox News ?
The fourth pillar is the least noticed by the people I interviewed. (We don't know who discovered water, but it wasn't a fish.) Journalists in Germany have a positive duty to protect minority rights, and prevent extremes of the left or right from overtaking the public sphere. Not just in their private opinions but in their journalistic work, they are defenders of liberal democracy and the dignity of all human beings. They help secure the achievements of the post-war republic, anchored in Europe.
This I regard as the jewel of German pressthink, but it is increasingly under pressure. Controversy surrounds it, as I will explain later.
Pillar five is not, I think, native to Germany, but I heard a lot about it in my interviews. In America it is the doctrine of 'žobjectivity.'' It warns journalists against becoming too involved in politics, or letting their beliefs influence their reports. In the UK, it's the duty to remain 'žimpartial,'' a founding principle of the
BBC . When you raise this topic with journalists in Germany, they almost always mention a famous remark by Hanns Joachim Friedrichs, anchorman for the news program, Tagesthemen. In a 1995 interview with Der Spiegel he said, 'žDon't make yourself party to anything, even if it's a good thing.''
Often the people who spoke of this cornerstone statement in German pressthink went on to explain that the statement was getting misinterpreted by some journalists. Friedrichs, they said, was not an extremist about objectivity. His view was simpler: When your job is to report, you have to avoid becoming tangled up in things. Maintain professional distance. Viewers won't trust you if you're as emotional as they are. You're allowed to have an attitude (Haltung) but stay cool when you're delivering the news. And don't shout.
Right wing populism Staying cool has not been easy for German journalists with the rise of right wing populism. Even calling it that '' right wing populism '' has become something to fight about. Here is the story my sources told me about this major event in German pressthink. What I will describe is a consensus narrative, which of course has dissenters and exceptions. On the broad outlines of this story there was rough agreement. On the interpretation of it, much debate. Ready?
During the European migrant crisis of 2015, the press joined with many others in German society and in a sense participated in 'žwelcome culture.'' If you remember, the hashtag for Bild's 'žWe help'' (wir helfen) campaign was #refugeeswelcome. By accepting so many refugees, Germany was being the good guy, and this permitted feelings of national pride to flow, including through the press. That was was not a bad thing, said my sources, but in too many cases journalists did not extend that pride to asking hard questions about how the refugee policy would work, the risks that came with it, and the events that were driving Angela Merkel's decisions- including media coverage.
Then, the story goes, Cologne happened. The shocking assaults on New Year's Eve and the slow way the truth came out were largely the fault of the police, who misreported the event initially, but participation in that failure by the national news media tended to support complaints by the far right that had been gathering force for years. 'žYou won't tell us the truth about migration because you are part of the system that is forcing this policy on German citizens.''
It was a propaganda point, of course, but after the refugee crisis of 2015 and now with the events in Cologne, it carried just enough truth to sting badly. Lugenpresse is the cruder form this critique took. Systempresse is subtler, and harder to disprove. The result was that German journalists began to doubt their performance, and look for a way to self-correct.
In September of 2016, the editor-in-chief of Die Zeit,
Giovanni di Lorenzo , wrote: 'žWe have once again exposed ourselves to the suspicion that we are in cahoots with the powerful, that we are reporting as uniformly as if we were controlled; that we are ignoring the concerns and fears of people who do not themselves belong to the refugee relief or the political class.''
And then, the story goes,
AfD happened. By winning 94 seats in the elections of 2017 the party brought its media strategy to the center of German politics. Keep accusing the press of 'žpolitical correctness.'' Claim to speak for a neglected population that journalists know nothing about. Make headlines by pulling stunts and breaking taboos, then play the victim when journalists try to balance all that free publicity with critical questions. As the attention economy shifts toward your issues, keep insisting that the establishment press doesn't want to talk about them. That keeps the pressure on.
A counter public sphere Meanwhile, construct on the internet a counter public sphere for core supporters, where there is constant news but only one message: the political class and the media elites are united against you, and determined to make you feel bad for having the 'žwrong'' opinions. Commit to our side and you can feel good again. We have facts to confirm all your suspicions.
To finish my story '' the one I heard in my interviews '' German journalists told me there was a 'žcorrection after Cologne,'' and with the added shock of the 2017 election the self-examination has continued up to today. There are now intense debates in newsrooms and classrooms about how to cover right wing populism, what kind of attention to give it, and what to do about a widening gap between journalists and the public, which goes well beyond the core supporters of AfD or the people who turned out for PEGIDA marches.
For example: it was a common opinion among the journalists I interviewed that the press in Berlin is too intimate with players in the political system. While this is the sort of criticism that can be made at any time, it has a different feel when right wing populism is on the rise all over Europe. How do we demonstrate in a clear and forceful way that we are on the public's side? How do we show we are listening? Those are questions German journalists are now asking themselves, whereas before the events of 2015-2017 they might have assumed the answers were self-evident. That is what I mean by a major event in German pressthink.
Everyone I talked to for this project said I should try to give my advice as an outsider who visited Germany and asked questions. I will do that, but first I have an observation. Look again at what I called the fourth pillar in German pressthink: Journalists have a positive duty to prevent extremes of the left or right from overtaking the public sphere. They are supposed to be defenders of liberal democracy and the dignity of all human beings. They uphold the post-war consensus: a Federal Republic anchored in Europe with a social market economy (soziale Marktwirtschaft).
The status of this fourth pillar is shifting. It is moving from a background belief, a silent assumption, to a front and center position in media and politics. Increasingly it will have to be fought for. Increasingly it will be attacked. That's part of what the insult, systempresse, is about. But even more than standing up for it, journalists in Germany will have to sit down with it and invent a deeper and at the same time more agile and creative way to observe this commandment.
Publics everywhere are getting harder to inform. The reasons for this are many. Journalists were once the gatekeepers for the news and information sphere. Now they are just one source among others available. A lot of what journalists do involves reporting on the maneuvers of governing elites. As confidence in these elites weakens, that kind of journalism can feel dated and out of touch. Social media reduces dramatically the cost for like-minded people to locate each other, share information, and fortify their defenses against unwelcome facts. This can have the effect of shutting out the press. These trends are not as advanced in Germany as they are in the United States, but that is no reason to ignore them.
My advice to German journalists:
* Pillar five '' stay cool, keep your distance, remain objective '' is in obvious tension with pillar four: defend liberal democracy and stand up for the dignity of all human beings. This tension is good. Learn to work with it. Don't trust anyone who tries to erase it.
* People who feel unheard do not make good customers for complex and uncomfortable truths. Improvements in public listening should therefore be higher on your innovation agenda.
* There's a difference between doing journalism and doing politics. But this does not release journalists from the requirement to show good political judgment. Maybe the problem with participating in welcome culture was not the sentiment, refugees welcome, but the illusion that it could ever be that simple. That was not good judgment.
* My experience in trying to warn people about Donald Trump's campaign to discredit the American press leads me to say this: It is not the job of journalists to 'žoppose'' a political party or charismatic leader. But they have to oppose a political style that undermines democracy and erodes its institutions. You should add this distinction to your pressthink.
* The principle, 'žtreat AfD as a normal party for as long as it is possible to do so...'' is a an intelligent one. The problem, of course, is what to do after that point. I thought ZDF had a good idea when in an August 12 interview it asked Alexander Gauland about urgent issues other than the one he most wanted to talk about: refugees, refugees, refugees.
* It's not your job, as journalists, to tell people what to think. But it is your job to alert them to what they need to think about. Social scientists call this agenda-setting. It is one of the most important things journalists do. But if the news agenda is set by the opinions of people in your newsroom, that simply isn't good enough. A reporting agenda borrowed from the parties in power isn't good enough, either. What if they aren't listening? Nor is an agenda set by entertainment values, or by media stunts and taboo busting. This is another area where innovation is required- and transparency.
I will give a gold medal in pressthink to the first newsroom in Germany that goes public with its priority list for covering the news and distributing attention, its agenda. This would be a 'žlive'' feature that anyone can access online, an editorial product, updated weekly or when something big happens. The different items on it should result from deep thought and careful research- and of course they have to both recognize reality and resonate with citizens. When critics say in that menacing tone, 'žwhat's YOUR agenda?'' just send them the link. If they don't like it, ask them to help you improve it. Among other benefits it would have is that the need for genuine newsroom diversity would immediately become apparent when you decide to go public with your priority list.
Users have more power Final thought: The users of journalism have more power now. By 'žusers'' I mean the readers, viewers, listeners. The license fee payers and subscribers. They have more power because they have more choice, because the media system is more two-way, and because populism now invites them to exit from the system, a threat that journalists have to take seriously.
When one party gains more power in a relationship, the relationship changes. German pressthink will have to evolve in recognition of that. Are you ready?
John Bash - Wikipedia
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 13:20
John Franklin Bash III United States Attorney for the Western District of TexasIncumbent Assumed office December 11, 2017PresidentDonald Trump Preceded by Richard DurbinPersonal detailsEducationHarvard University Harvard Law SchoolJohn Franklin Bash III is an American attorney who currently serves as the United States Attorney for the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas. Prior to assuming his current role, he was a special assistant and associate counsel to U.S. President Donald Trump. From 2012 to 2017, Bash was an Assistant to the Solicitor General in the United States Department of Justice. In that role, he argued ten cases on behalf of the United States before the Supreme Court.[1] Bash was previously an associate attorney at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, where his practice focused on complex litigation in federal district and appellate courts.[2][3]
A graduate of Harvard University and Harvard Law School, Bash clerked for Antonin Scalia of the United States Supreme Court and Brett Kavanaugh of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.[2]
References [ edit ] ^ Autullo, Ryan (August 23, 2017). "Sources: Trump assistant to be top federal prosecutor in Central Texas". Austin American Statesman . Retrieved 27 October 2017 . ^ a b "President Donald J. Trump Announces Sixth Wave of United States Attorney Nominations". The White House. September 8, 2017 . Retrieved 23 October 2017 . This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain. ^ "Trump appoints new top prosecutor for West Texas". USA Today. September 8, 2017 . Retrieved 27 October 2017 . External links [ edit ] Biography at U.S. Department of Justice
Woodward Book: Trump Staff Thinks Trump is an Idiot
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 13:09
President Trump. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images
It is relatively easy to get White House staffers to leak mind-blowing anecdotes about President Trump's various derangements, and for that very reason, it is hard to find new anecdotes that register on the crazy-Trump scale. CNN and (unsurprisingly) the Washington Post have obtained early versions of Bob Woodward's version of tales from the court of the mad king, and even by the high standard set by the many previous insider accounts, his portrait of Trump's delusional state appears to be especially harrowing.
Woodward confirms that Trump's former secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, described him as a ''fucking moron,'' a fact that has been reported previously. He adds several more officials to the list of people who have blurted out this obvious conclusion.
After security officials tried fruitlessly to explain to Trump the importance of American defenses in South Korea, including a system that reduces the warning time of a North Korean missile attack from 15 minutes to seven seconds, Secretary of Defense James Mattis told associates that Trump ''acted like '-- and had the understanding of '-- 'a fifth- or sixth-grader.''Š''
Former National Economic Council director Gary Cohn seemed to believe that Trump actually lacks object permanence. To prevent the president from signing a letter canceling a free-trade agreement with South Korea, he stole the letter from Trump's desk. Trump ''did not notice it was missing,'' the Post reports.
Chief of Staff John Kelly has called Trump an idiot and also crazy:
''He's an idiot. It's pointless to try to convince him of anything. He's gone off the rails. We're in crazytown,'' Kelly is quoted as saying at a staff meeting in his office. ''I don't even know why any of us are here. This is the worst job I've ever had.''
Trump's lawyer John Dowd has likewise called his client an idiot. Somewhat more audaciously, he has argued that Trump should not have to testify to Special Counsel Robert Mueller, because the transcript would leak, and foreign leaders would see that Trump is an idiot:
Dowd then explained to Mueller and Quarles why he was trying to keep the president from testifying: ''I'm not going to sit there and let him look like an idiot. And you publish that transcript, because everything leaks in Washington, and the guys overseas are going to say, 'I told you he was an idiot. I told you he was a goddamn dumbbell. What are we dealing with this idiot for?'''
Another Trump lawyer, Jay Sekulow, tried to argue to Robert Mueller that Trump could not be asked to give an interview because he is a compulsive liar. They literally explained to Mueller how they conducted a mock interview with Trump, and he was so unable to tell the truth that they considered him mentally disqualified from testifying:
Jay Sekulow went to Mueller's office and re-enacted the mock interview. Their goal: to argue that Trump couldn't possibly testify because he was incapable of telling the truth.
''He just made something up. That's his nature,'' Dowd said to Mueller.
It seems somehow unfair to let somebody remain on the job as president because he's such a compulsive liar he can''t be allowed to testify under oath.
Trump also demeaned the wartime service of John McCain, stating ''that the former Navy pilot had been a coward for taking early release from a prisoner-of-war camp in Vietnam because of his father's military rank and leaving others behind.''
This is in fact the opposite of the truth. The whole point of what makes McCain's imprisonment so heroic is that North Vietnam offered to give him early release on account of his father's rank, believing it would demoralize other members of the military, and McCain refused, even withstanding torture rather than give in and accept freedom. This is the most important and well-known fact about McCain and Trump got it backward. It's like attacking Harriet Tubman for her refusal to help escaped slaves.
Woodward has repeatedly scolded the media for its unfairness to Trump, and expressed skepticism about the Russia investigation. Another reporter who did the same thing, before proceeding to publish a book stuffed with harrowing inside tidbits about Trump's dysfunction, is Michael Wolff. Perhaps both of them were shrewdly planting favorable commentary in order to warm up potential sources. Wolff's book, and its too-amazing-to-be-real anecdotes, was met with a fair amount of skepticism from the mainstream media. The additional support from Woodward seems to confirm its essential thrust, if not every detail. However dumb and crazy you might think Trump is, the reality always turns out to be even worse.
Report: Everybody in White House Considers Trump an Idiot
Nike-Colin Kaepernick ad and why brands are more liberal - Business Insider
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 13:07
Colin Kaepernick. John Bazemore/AP
Michael Jordan probably never actually said "Republicans buy sneakers, too." But that apocryphal quote reflects a common sentiment for consumer product marketers: Better to stay away from political controversies so you can keep selling on both sides of the aisle.
Nike, which has drawn both praise and criticism for placing Colin Kaepernick at the center of its "Just Do It" anniversary campaign, is not following the maxim.
Its choice '-- along with the recent choices of other corporations to wade into political disputes, as with Delta's and Dick's Sporting Goods' recent brushes with gun-rights activists '-- tells us something about new political incentives facing brands.
This isn't "woke capital." Companies are maximizing profits as they always did, but they're responding to incentives that have shifted to encourage political participation by brands.
There is still a downside risk for brands that get political: They may alienate some of their customers. The people posting videos of themselves destroying their own bought-and-paid-for Nike sneakers may not buy new ones anytime soon.
What's new is brands are seeing a major upside risk. As more consumers come to expect brands to reflect their moral and political values, a brand that takes a side on a controversial issue can strengthen its bond with a consumer segment, making them willing to buy more or to buy at a higher price.
But there is an asymmetry: This mostly works if you engage from the left, not the right.
Why brands are liberal now After the Delta-NRA flap, I wrote this:
"Socially liberal segments of the public punch above their weight as potential customers (and, in some cases, as potential employees) for these companies. Think about who companies most want to advertise to: people who have a lot of disposable income and aren't too old. This advertiser preference is why television ratings are reported in terms of adults 25 to 54 (or sometimes even 18 to 49) and it's why networks like Bravo tout their unusually upscale viewer base to prospective advertisers. Appealing to senior citizens is a good way to win an election, but it's not a good way to sell most consumer products and services."
Unfortunately for conservatives, markets for consumer products are not democracies. As American politics gets more polarized by age and less polarized by income, most brands' target customer will tend to move left relative to the country's political median, even as the average voter sits to the right of the whole country's political median.
For example, a poll conducted for The Washington Post in May found that 63% of respondents over age 50 thought it was "never" appropriate to protest by kneeling during the national anthem; only 38% of respondents under 30 said the same.
Younger Americans are also more ethnically diverse than older Americans, so a company trying to sell to young people is naturally selling into a much more diverse "electorate" than a political party running a national election in which the average congressional district is significantly whiter than the country as a whole.
So, think about the demographic of who's most upset about Kaepernick's protest movement, and then think about how much an athletic-apparel company needs to concern itself with the opinions of senior citizens, and then think about why Nike thinks this ad campaign will improve its sales.
There is also the problem that conservatives are desperately uncool.
You'd think some brands would try to get on the conservative side of big political issues '-- you make the conservative sneaker, I'll make the liberal sneaker, and both of us can enjoy higher profit margins because we don't have to compete with each other on price. Alas, the conservative shoemaker will face a coolness deficit with not-especially-political consumers, not to mention with the left-leaning creative professionals he'll need to market the shoes in the first place.
Finally, as politics has gotten more polarized by education and urbanization, it's likely the most influential consumers '-- the "connectors" and "mavens" and "salesmen" Malcolm Gladwell writes about in "The Tipping Point" '-- are more disproportionately left-of-center than they used to be. This is an advantage for liberal-identified brands and a hindrance for conservative-identified ones.
That is, the "Big Sort" that has made the congressional map more difficult for Democrats is simultaneously increasing liberals' influence in the market for consumer products and services.
One cheer for woke brands Where politics has a very direct bearing on the bottom line '-- trade policy, labor policy, tax policy '-- you can expect Nike and other companies to prioritize those direct effects over public image, whether that means aligning with the right or the left.
So, if you're a liberal, you shouldn't expect Nike to be a reliable partner on every issue '-- and you shouldn't be naive about how the political interests of stockholders will often diverge from those of consumers, workers, or the broad public.
But politics is about coalitions. Someone doesn't have to be a reliable partner to be a useful one. Liberals should welcome Nike to the resistance, while critically watching its future actions.
'Hitler voerde alles uit wat in Mein Kampf stond, op (C)(C)n punt na' - NRC
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 12:58
Ruim een jaar heeft de historicus Willem Melching (1954) gewerkt aan zijn commentaren op de nieuwe vertaling van Mein Kampf. In Nederland is de autobiografie en politieke geloofsbelijdenis van Adolf Hitler uit 1925 nog altijd officieel verboden. Al is die nu gewoon te koop in de boekhandel en op internet.
CV Duitsland-kennerWillem Frederik Bernard Melching (1954) is historicus en verbonden aan de UvA, met als specialisme Duitsland. Hij publiceerde onder meer een biografie van Hitler en een geschiedenis van de DDR.
Toch verwacht Melching, die eerder onder meer een biografie van Hitler schreef en de Nederlandse editie van de dagboeken van Joseph Goebbels bezorgde, geen rechtszaken over Mijn strijd. 'žOndanks het verbod van Mein Kampf sprak de Amsterdamse rechtbank vier jaar geleden een antiquair vrij tegen wie een rechtszaak was aangespannen wegens de verkoop van Hitlers boek'', legt Melching, verbonden aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam, uit in zijn werkkamer.
'žEn de Duitse wetenschappelijke editie van Mein Kampf, die twee jaar geleden uitkwam toen het boek zeventig jaar na Hitlers dood rechtenvrij was geworden, is ook gewoon te koop in de Nederlandse boekhandel. Allerlei veel gruwelijkere antisemitische boeken, zoals Handbuch der Judenfrage zijn niet verboden. Ik geloof trouwens niet dat er ook maar iemand antisemitisch is geworden door het lezen van Mein Kampf. Degenen die Hitlers boek gingen lezen, waren dat al. Als je wilt begrijpen wat er in Duitsland onder het nationaal-socialisme is gebeurd, moet je Mein Kampf lezen. Ik vind dan ook dat, met uitzondering van kinderporno en dergelijke, geen enkel boek verboden zou moeten zijn.''
De Duitsers hadden zo'n 3.700 noten nodig om het gevaar van het verboden boek te bezweren. U volstaat met niet al te lange inleidingen op elk hoofdstuk, annotaties en korte omschrijvingen in de kantlijn. Waarom hebt u de Duitse uitgave niet min of meer gevolgd?
'žDe kritische Edition van het Institut f¼r Zeitgeschichte is bedoeld voor zowel Hitler-specialisten als middelbare scholieren. De tekst van Mein Kampf is daarom bedolven onder noten die vaak langer zijn dan de tekst zelf. Maar heel veel noten zijn overbodig omdat ze "f gaan over dingen die iedereen al weet "f zo esoterisch zijn dat weinig mensen er interesse voor zullen hebben. Ik besloot daarom al gauw om het heel anders aan te pakken en me te beperken tot inleidingen die de hoofdstukken steeds in een context plaatsen. Ik heb ook geprobeerd om de lezer een soort spoorboekje te geven die hem door de tekst leidt. Want Hitler was hopeloos in het indelen van een tekst.''
Praat mee met NRCWat vind jij ervan dat nu een Nederlandse vertaling van Mein Kampf in de winkels ligt ondanks dat de verkoop van het boek nog altijd officieel verboden is? Zou jij het boek wel of niet willen lezen? Onderaan dit artikel kunnen abonnees op die vraag reageren. Hier vind je meer over reageren op NRC.nl.
Ewoud Kieft, die 'Het verboden boek' schreef over Mein Kampf, bekende dat hij om bepaalde passages moest grinniken. Had u dat ook?
'žNee, ik heb bij het lezen van Mein Kampf zelden gedacht: goh, wat zegt Hitler dit nu leuk. Soms geeft hij wel goede politieke analyses, bijvoorbeeld van de wijze waarop een politieke partij zich op de kaart kan zetten door (C)(C)n vijand '' en niet verschillende '' te kiezen en een simpele boodschap steeds maar te herhalen. Toch is Mein Kampf heel absorberend. Als je de tekst alinea voor alinea leest, is die fascinerend, hypnotiserend bijna. Ik ging er op een gegeven moment zelfs van dromen, dan schoten er 's nachts flarden tekst door mijn hoofd. Dat komt ook door de vertaling van Mario Molegraaf '' die ging er trouwens ook over dromen. De oude NSB-vertaling uit 1939 van Steven Barends, met de titel Mijn kamp, is heel plechtstatig. Molegraaf heeft er een levendige propagandatekst van gemaakt.''
Lange tijd stond Mein Kampf bekend als het geraaskal van een idioot. Die reputatie is nu aan het veranderen.
'žHeel lang werd Hitler algemeen beschouwd als een politicus zonder ideologie die maar wat riep. Marxisten vonden dit natuurlijk omdat er voor hen maar (C)(C)n echte ideologie bestond: het marxisme. En de Duitse bevolking had er na de oorlog belang bij om Hitler weg te zetten als een kakelende gek. Want in dat geval waren ze misleid door een krankzinnige misdadiger en hoefden ze er verder niet over na te denken. Maar voor Hitler was het boek bittere ernst, hij legde er zijn ziel en zaligheid in. Sinds een jaar of twintig beschouwen steeds meer historici Mein Kampf als een echte Weltsanschauung. En als je het zo leest, dan moet je vaststellen dat er systeem zit in het boek.''
U schrijft in uw inleiding op Mein Kampf dat er 'žniets exotisch'' was aan Hitlers gedachtengoed.
'žOp een enkele uitzondering na waren Hitlers opvattingen niet origineel. Mein Kampf is een vergaarbak van populair-wetenschappelijke verhalen en weetjes uit die tijd. Soms waren die toen eigenlijk al achterhaald, zoals het idee dat Duitsland overbevolkt was, weldra zijn bewoners niet meer kon voeden en daarom meer Lebensraum nodig had. De productiviteit ging in de landbouw tenslotte met sprongen vooruit in de eerste helft van de 20ste eeuw. Maar toch bleef overbevolking voor veel politici een obsessie. Onze premier Drees dacht zelfs na de oorlog nog dat Nederland met negen miljoen inwoners overbevolkt was en bevorderde de emigratie naar Canada en Australi. Ook het sociaal-darwinisme van Hitler en zijn opvatting dat het menselijk bestaan een strijd is, waren algemeen aanvaard. Dat geldt ook voor eugenetica. Zweden is tot 1975 zelfs doorgegaan met het steriliseren van zwakzinnigen en asocialen. Het boeiende van Mein Kampf is nu dat Hitler op een tamelijk systematische wijze samenbrengt wat heel veel mensen dachten.''
Wat was een van de originele gedachten van Hitler?
'žMet zijn opvatting dat politieke ideologie een religie moet zijn was Hitler zijn tijd vooruit. Sinds een jaar of twintig is het gebruikelijk om communisme en nazisme als een geloof te beschouwen '' Karel van het Reve schreef al in 1969 Het geloof der kameraden over het marxisme. Hitler hamerde er een eeuw geleden op dat een politieke ideologie een geloof moest zijn waaraan de aanhangers zich onvoorwaardelijk overgaven. Hij vond een politieke religie uit, compleet met een verlosser, een heilig, onveranderlijk boek, een heilige stad, feestdagen, herdenkingen, rituelen en massabijeenkomsten.''
Anders dan gebruikelijk beschouwde Hitler het jodendom niet als religie. Ook waren Joden volgens hem geen volk, maar een ras.
'žDat was een heel slimme zet. Door Joden als inferieur ras te beschouwen maakte Hitler het mogelijk om ze niet als volwaardige Duitse staatsburgers te zien maar als minderwaardige 'onderdanen' die een gevaar vormden voor de cultuurscheppende arirs. Door Joden als ras te bestempelen, sneed Hitler ook de weg af voor Joden om zich te ontdoen van het jodendom door zich tot het christendom te bekeren.''
Een wonderlijk aspect van Mein Kampf is dat er tamelijk precies in staat wat Hitler is gaan doen toen hij eenmaal de macht had, zoals Lebensraum veroveren in de Sovjet-Unie en de 'verwijdering' van de Joden uit de samenleving.
'žHitler was beslist een man met een plan. En dat was gebaseerd op een analyse van de geschiedenis met rassenstrijd als motor. Niet alleen voor de Lebensraum en de Judenfrage had hij plannen, maar ook voor het onderwijs, jeugdorganisaties, vrijetijdsbesteding enzovoorts. Mein Kampf is een blauwdruk voor Hitlers nieuwe Duitsland. Hij beloofde er heel veel in, en het bizarre is dat hij veel beloftes nakwam, nadat hij in 1933 de macht had gegrepen. Zo schrijft hij ergens: als we eenmaal de macht hebben, dan hebben we ongeveer zes jaar nodig om een oorlog te beginnen. Zijn eerste vergadering na de machtsovername op 30 januari hield hij met de legertop. 'Heren, aan de slag', zei hij, 'tussen 1941 en 1943 beginnen we een oorlog met de Sovjet-Unie.' Maar eerst moeten we Frankrijk oprollen en daar zal Engeland zo van schrikken dat het een verdrag met ons sluit.''
Op (C)(C)n punt hield Hitler zich niet aan wat hij in Mein Kampf schreef, beweert u in uw inleiding. Tegen zijn eigen overtuiging in viel Duitsland in 1941 de Sovjet-Unie binnen zonder verdrag met Groot-Brittanni.
'žIk denk dat Hitler zich zo door zijn eigen ideologie heeft laten meeslepen dat hij ging denken dat het ook wel zonder verdrag zou lukken. Hij beschouwde de Russen als een stelletje gedegenereerde dronkelappen die nauwelijks tot tegenstand in staat waren. Maar het Rode Leger en de Sovjet-Unie bleken toch een maatje te groot voor Duitsland. In mijn optiek besefte Hitler al in augustus 1941 dat de oorlog in de Sovjet-Unie wel eens verkeerd kon aflopen. En toen rijpte bij hem in korte tijd het idee dat de Joden moesten worden omgebracht en vroeg hij Heydrich, Himmler en andere nazikopstukken om hiervoor met plannen te komen.''
Want juist voor de Holocaust staat in Mein Kampf geen blauwdruk.
'žKlopt. Wel kondigt Hitler in Mein Kampf al aan dat hij de Joden in Duitsland eerst hun staatsburgerschap zal ontnemen, ze vervolgens isoleert en ten slotte 'verwijdert'. Hoe dat laatste precies zou gaan, moest nog nader worden bepaald. Daarvoor zijn in de loop van de twaalf jaar van het Duizendjarige Rijk verschillende plannen bedacht. Toen Duitsland de Sovjet-Unie binnenviel, kwam het idee om de Joden naar Siberi af te voeren waar ze zich zouden doodwerken. Maar de inval liep vast, Siberi werd niet bereikt. Toen Hitler besefte dat hij de oorlog wel eens zou kunnen verliezen, begon hij het als zijn ideologische plicht te zien om de Joden te vernietigen, als een nalatenschap aan de wereld. Al op 12 december 1941 zei hij tegen de alte K¤mpfer, zijn strijdmakkers in de NSDAP van het eerste uur: 'We gaan schoon schip maken.' In het bezette Polen bouwden de Duitsers op dat moment de eerste vernietigingskampen.''
Adolf Hitler: Mijn strijd. Vert. Mario Molegraaf. Inleidingen en annotaties: Willem Melching. Prometheus, 856 blz. '‚¬ 49,99
Mijn strijd verschijnt in een oplage van 10.000 exemplaren, waarvan er volgens de uitgever al 6.000 in de winkels liggen. Daarom wordt een tweede oplage gepland.
In de Rode Hoed (Keizersgracht 102, Amsterdam) vindt deze woensdag een debat plaats over Mein Kampf: Gevaarlijk pamflet of zinvolle waarschuwing? Met onder anderen Frank van Vree (directeur van het NIOD), Emile Schrijver (directeur Joods Historisch Museum), Mai Spijkers (Uitgever Mijn Strijd) en Willem Melching (historicus). Aanvang 20.00 uur, toegang '‚¬ 12,50.
Politie past spandoek op Amsterdam CS aan - Amsterdam - PAROOL
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 12:55
Oh snap! Change a few things up and try submitting again
Update De politie voert woensdagochtend actie bij het Centraal Station van Amsterdam, maar heeft wel de leuzen op de spandoeken iets aangepast.
Dit gebeurde na overleg met burgemeester Femke Halsema. Vrijdag stak een 19-jarige Afghaan twee mensen neer op het station.De agenten zouden eerst actievoeren met spandoeken met daarop de leus: 'Geen politie'. Voorzitter Gerrit van de Kamp van de vakbond ACP: "Maar dat zou in de context van wat er afgelopen week is gebeurd wel een heel raar beeld geven."
De tekst op de doeken is inmiddels vervangen door: 'Weinig politie'.
Burgemeester Halsema bedankt de vakbonden voor die aanpassing. Ze is blij dat de organisatoren met hun spandoeken rekening hebben gehouden 'met de gevoelige situatie' rond het Centraal Station, na het steekincident vorige week, laat haar woordvoerder weten.De staking is onderdeel van een estafette-actie voor een nieuwe cao. De bonden eisen maatregelen die de werkdruk voor agenten verlagen.
De 'afsluiting' betekent niet dat er helemaal geen politie in het Amsterdamse centrum is. Om noodhulp te kunnen garanderen, blijven er agenten aan het werk. Dat zijn er alleen minder dan op andere dagen.
Online Radio Awards 2018 naar Grand Prix Radio, TPOdcast, Veelo en Veenstra - Online Radio Awards 2018
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 12:37
[NIEUWS]
Gisterenmiddag zijn in het Nederlands Instituut voor Beeld en Geluid, tijdens het Cross Media Caf(C), de deelnemers van 'The Radio Project' bekend gemaakt. Zij mochten zich voor het eerst op een podium presenteren en hun ideen delen met een groter publiek. Het Cross Media Caf(C) stond geheel in het teken van online radio en podcasting.De award voor 'Beste Online Radiostation' ging naar Grand Prix Radio. TPO Podcast wist zelfs twee awards binnen te halen: 'Beste Podcast' en TPO-Podcaster Roderick Veelo ontving de award voor 'Beste Presentator'. Michiel Veenstra kreeg de award voor 'Online Radio Ambassadeur 2018' uitgereikt voor zijn werk op het gebied van online radio en podcasting.
Beste Online Radiostation: Grand Prix RadioDe award voor 'Beste Online Radiostation' ging naar Grand Prix Radio van Olav Mol en Alexander Stevens. Deze online zender brengt danceable hits & classics in combinatie met live commentaar over de Formule 1 en MotoGP. Grand Prix Radio liet de andere genomineerde stations: Soulshow Radio, XM The Talent Station, KX Radio en Olympia Radio, achter zich.
Juryoordeel: 'Mooi voorbeeld van een niche radiostation dat zich op (C)(C)n sport richt. Daarnaast spat de bevlogenheid, passie en kennis van dit station af. Met beperkte middelen weten de makers een professioneel klinkend station draaiende te houden met inhoudelijk op maat gesneden expertise en verslagen. De uitstraling via social media en de eigen app past helemaal in de beoogde doelgroep van autosportliefhebbers. Het is goed te zien dat hier vakmensen met visie aan werken.'
Beste Podcast: TPO PodcastNaast online stations zijn ook de podcasts steeds populairder onder de Nederlandse luisteraars. De podcast van RTL-presentator Roderick Veelo en Bert Brussen (The Post Online) won dit jaar de award voor 'Beste Podcast'. De andere genomineerde podcasts waren Kein Geloel, D-Tales, Gamer.nl Podcast en Pitstop.
Juryoordeel: Een duidelijke onderscheidende podcast, met een voor The Post Online zo karakteristieke visie op het nieuws. De TPO Podcast laat een ander geluid horen, die je niet op de gewone radio hoort en weet daarmee veel mensen te bereiken. Verder is de podcast zeer vakkundig geproduceerd en gepresenteerd door Roderick Veelo en met Bert Brussen op de zijspan voor scherpe opinies op het nieuws. TPO Podcast weet per aflevering veel prikkelende onderwerpen te bespreken, voorzien van strak geknipte quotes.
Beste Presentator: Roderick Veelo (TPO Podcast)De jury was bij veel podcasts en online stations onder de indruk van de presentatiekwaliteiten. De vijf genomineerden verdienen allen een pluim, maar Roderick Veelo ontvangt dit jaar de Online Radio Award voor Beste Presentator. De andere kanshebbers waren Olav Mol (Grand Prix Radio), Michiel Veenstra (D-Tales/ Michel met), Rick van Velthuysen (Traffic Radio) en Dinja Pannenbakker (KX Radio).
Juryoordeel: Ervaren presentator, goed stemgebruik, inhoudelijk op de hoogte en heeft een tone of voice die laagdrempelig doch inhoudelijk is. Door de strakke flow in zijn performing neemt hij je als luisteraar soepel mee in alle onderwerpen, stelt hij inhoudelijk de juiste vragen en voelt 45 minuten als 10 voor de luisteraar. Van radiopiraat tot mainstream en nu weer online op de scherpte van de snede. Veelo toont lef en weet als presentator het verschil te maken.
Online Radio Ambassadeur: Michiel Veensta Afgelopen zondag werd in het radioprogramma De Perstribune (NPO Radio 1) al bekend gemaakt dat Michiel Veenstra de 'Online Radio Ambassadeur 2018' is geworden. Tijdens de awardshow kreeg hij van de Hilversumse Mediawethouder Wimar Jaeger de prijs uitgereikt.
Juryoordeel:'Michiel Veenstra is in Nederland al jaren degene die de kar trekt op het gebied van podcasting, online radio en inzet van social media bij het maken van radio. Als er een persoonlijkheid is die het online radio platform in Nederland kan bevorderen, dan is dat Michiel. Hij snapt het technisch, maar ook vanuit een visionaire kijk.'
Online Radio AwardsDe stichting verenigde-Online Radiostations (v-OR) en medianieuwssite Spreekbuis.nl organiseerden dit jaar voor de eerste maal de Online Radio Awards. De prijsuitreiking is opgezet om de internet only-radiomakers en podcasters, maar vooral de online radio en podcasting onder de aandacht van het grote publiek te brengen.
Het publiek kon in de zomermaanden via de website www.onlineradioawards.nl zelf stemmen op zijn of haar favoriete online radiostation, podcast en presentator. Meer dan 15.000 stemmen kwamen er binnen. De jury koos de winnaar uit de genomineerden. De jury van de eerste editie van de Online Radio Awards bestond uit: Peter Contant (Voorzitter van de v-OR en uitgever van oa Max Magazine), Richard Otto (uitgever van oa Spreekbuis.nl), Pierre Papa (radiocoach), Adam Curry (mediaondernemer), Isabelle Brinkman (voormalig TMF-vj en 3FM-dj en huidige stationvoice van RTL), Erik de Zwart (Voorzitter Stichting Top 40 en mediaondernemer).
Kijk voor meer informatie op www.OnlineRadioAwards.nl
Trump Blasts Sessions for Charging G.O.P. Members Before Midterms - The New York Times
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 04:16
Image Attorney General Jeff Sessions was attacked by President Trump on Twitter after the Justice Department brought charges against two Republican congressmen. Credit Credit Eric Thayer for The New York Times WASHINGTON '-- President Trump on Monday attacked Jeff Sessions, his attorney general, over the Justice Department's decision to bring criminal charges against two Republican congressmen ahead of the midterm elections, linking the department's actions with his party's political fate.
In a pair of tweets sent midafternoon, Mr. Trump suggested that the Justice Department should not have brought charges against two ''very popular'' Republican lawmakers running for re-election so close to November because it could jeopardize the party's control of the House.
''Two long running, Obama era, investigations of two very popular Republican Congressmen were brought to a well publicized charge, just ahead of the Mid-Terms, by the Jeff Sessions Justice Department,'' Mr. Trump wrote on Twitter. ''Two easy wins now in doubt because there is not enough time. Good job Jeff.''
In another tweet, he suggested that Mr. Sessions, a former senator who was one of Mr. Trump's only vocal defenders early in his campaign, had fallen into favor with Democrats after the charges were delivered.
The president was most likely referring to two recent cases: Last month, Duncan Hunter, Republican of California, was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges that he and his wife, Margaret, used more than $250,000 in campaign funds to pay for personal expenses. Chris Collins, a Republican of New York and an ardent supporter of Mr. Trump's, was indicted on charges of insider trading.
Both lawmakers have pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Mr. Trump has frequently berated Mr. Sessions and publicly questioned his judgment since the attorney general's decision in March 2017 to recuse himself from the special counsel's investigation into the Trump campaign's ties with Russia.
Until Monday, Mr. Trump had not so overtly tied the Justice Department's responsibility for pursuing charges against alleged criminals with Republicans' election prospects.
Video President Trump made a career of firing people on TV. Now, he is expressing his disappointment with Attorney General Jeff Sessions publicly through tweets, but has not uttered two key words. Published On July 26, 2017 Credit Credit Image by Doug Mills/The New York Times Last week, it even appeared that Mr. Trump would stop publicly toying with the idea of removing Mr. Sessions until after the midterm elections.
''I just would love to have him do a great job,'' Mr. Trump said in an interview with Bloomberg News in the Oval Office last week. ''I do question what Jeff is doing.''
By calling it the ''Jeff Sessions Justice Department,'' Mr. Trump put even more distance between himself and the country's top law enforcement organization, which is investigating members of his inner circle and his business dealings.
Those inquiries are being conducted by the United States attorney's office in the Southern District of New York and by Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel appointed to investigate Russian election interference and any ties to the Trump campaign.
Mr. Trump's tweets '-- sent from the White House on a searingly hot day that kept him from departing for his nearby Virginia golf course '-- criticized indictments that fall well within the Justice Department's window for bringing charges during an election cycle.
His comments triggered a swift rebuke from former prosecutors and members of his own party.
''The United States is not some banana republic with a two-tiered system of justice '-- one for the majority and one for the minority party,'' Senator Ben Sasse, Republican of Nebraska and a member of the Judiciary Committee, said in a statement. ''These two men have been charged with crimes because of evidence, not because of who the president was when the investigations began.''
The investigations into Mr. Trump's inner circle have resulted in a string of guilty pleas and convictions that include two members of the Trump campaign and Mr. Trump's personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen. Allen Weisselberg, the chief financial officer of the Trump Organization, and David Pecker, the publisher of the National Enquirer and Mr. Trump's longtime friend, have also cooperated to some degree with federal investigators.
Mr. Trump has used Twitter to cast the investigations into his conduct and that of his associates as witch hunts propagated by career government employees.
''The president is trying to delegitimize the criminal justice system in this country because people close to him are at risk,'' said Joyce Vance, a former federal prosecutor.
The Justice Department declined to comment. After Mr. Trump attacked the department, its methods and the outcome of its cases last month, in the wake of prosecutors' securing a guilty plea from Mr. Cohen and a guilty verdict for the president's former campaign manager, Mr. Sessions issued a rare rebuke.
''While I am attorney general, the actions of the Department of Justice will not be improperly influenced by political considerations,'' Mr. Sessions said in his statement. ''No nation has a more talented, more dedicated group of law enforcement investigators and prosecutors than the United States.''
Only one of the two indicted congressmen will drop out from his bid for re-election this fall. Mr. Hunter cannot take his name off the ballot in California, and maintains a strong chance of re-election against a first-time Democratic opponent. In the 47-page indictment, Mr. Hunter and his wife are accused of hiding personal expenses as gifts for ''wounded warriors'' and using the money to pay for lavish expenditures, including vacations and a plane ticket for a pet rabbit.
Mr. Collins, who pleaded not guilty in early August, announced days later that he would suspend his campaign for re-election in New York. The indictment immediately weakened the chances of Mr. Collins's seat remaining Republican, although the Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan political handicapper, maintains that the seat is a ''likely'' Republican victory.
Federal prosecutors say Mr. Collins used his seat on the board of an Australian-based drug company to privately tip off his son and other investors '-- before the information was made public '-- that the company's only product had failed a do-or-die scientific trial. Because his son and others dumped their stocks before the public announcement, they avoided losing hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Mr. Collins received the message that tipped him off while he was attending the 2017 congressional picnic at the White House, according to the scene described in court papers.
It was clear that elections were on the president's mind on Monday. After tweeting about Mr. Sessions, Mr. Trump attacked John Kerry, the former senator and Democratic presidential candidate, for suggesting that he might run again for president in 2020.
''I should only be so lucky - although the field that is currently assembling looks really good - FOR ME!'' Mr. Trump wrote.
Emily Cochrane contributed reporting.
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Flash - Saudi Arabia declares online satire punishable offence - France 24
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 04:03
04 September 2018 - 15H40 (C) Saudi Royal Palace/AFP/File | Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been criticised by rights groups over the targeting of activists and political dissidents RIYADH (AFP) - Saudi Arabia will punish online satire that "disrupts public order" with up to five years in prison, the public prosecutor said Tuesday, as the kingdom cracks down on dissent.
"Producing and distributing content that ridicules, mocks, provokes and disrupts public order, religious values and public morals through social media ... will be considered a cybercrime punishable by a maximum of five years in prison and a fine of three million riyals ($800,000)," the public prosecution tweeted late Monday.
The kingdom's powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has drawn harsh criticism from rights groups over the targeting of human rights activists and political dissidents across the spectrum since his appointment in June 2017.
Saudi Arabia's legislation on cybercrime has sparked concern among international rights groups in the past.
Dozens of Saudi citizens have been convicted on charges linked to dissent under a previous sweeping law, particularly linked to posts on Twitter.
In September 2017, authorities issued a public call for citizens to report on the social media activities of their fellow citizens, under a broad definition of "terrorist" crimes.
Saudi Arabia's public prosecutor on Tuesday also announced it was seeking the death penalty in the case against Sheikh Salman al-Awda, a prominent Islamist cleric arrested last year along with 20 others.
(C) 2018 AFP
Indicted Candice Marie Claiborn
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 03:56
Indicted: Candice Marie Claiborne 4/14/2017
Candace Marie Claiborne has become the first Clinton-era State Department employee indicted on treason charges, after a federal grand jury indicted her for conspiring to defraud the U.S. government, concealing contact with foreign spies, obstructing an official proceeding, and making false statements to the FBI.
Claiborne, a veteran State Department employee who possessed a Top Secret security clearance, concealed her extensive contacts with Chinese intelligence agents, who for years lavished her with thousands of dollars in gifts as part of a pay-for-play scheme, according to a Department of Justice press release.
In addition to cash payments, Chinese spies provided Claiborne with vacations, an apartment, Apple electronics, and tuition to a Chinese fashion school, according to the indictment. Suggesting she learned tricks from Hillary Clinton, her former boss, Claiborne allegedly told co-conspirators to delete all emails and evidence after getting caught.
The bill of charges contains numerous felonies and Claiborne, 60, is facing spending the rest of her life behind bars, as prosecutors warn she is ''the first of many'' corrupt Clinton-era State Department employees that will be bought to justice by a reinvigorated DOJ.
Video Courtesy of William Mount YouTube Channel
Killing C.I.A. Informants, China Crippled U.S. Spying Operations - The New York Times
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 03:06
Image An honor guard outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing last month. The Chinese government killed or imprisoned 18 to 20 C.I.A sources from 2010 through 2012. Credit Credit Wang Zhao/Agence France-Presse '-- Getty Images WASHINGTON '-- The Chinese government systematically dismantled C.I.A. spying operations in the country starting in 2010, killing or imprisoning more than a dozen sources over two years and crippling intelligence gathering there for years afterward.
Current and former American officials described the intelligence breach as one of the worst in decades. It set off a scramble in Washington's intelligence and law enforcement agencies to contain the fallout, but investigators were bitterly divided over the cause. Some were convinced that a mole within the C.I.A. had betrayed the United States. Others believed that the Chinese had hacked the covert system the C.I.A. used to communicate with its foreign sources. Years later, that debate remains unresolved.
But there was no disagreement about the damage. From the final weeks of 2010 through the end of 2012, according to former American officials, the Chinese killed at least a dozen of the C.I.A.'s sources. According to three of the officials, one was shot in front of his colleagues in the courtyard of a government building '-- a message to others who might have been working for the C.I.A.
Still others were put in jail. All told, the Chinese killed or imprisoned 18 to 20 of the C.I.A.'s sources in China, according to two former senior American officials, effectively unraveling a network that had taken years to build.
Assessing the fallout from an exposed spy operation can be difficult, but the episode was considered particularly damaging. The number of American assets lost in China, officials said, rivaled those lost in the Soviet Union and Russia during the betrayals of both Aldrich Ames and Robert Hanssen, formerly of the C.I.A. and the F.B.I., who divulged intelligence operations to Moscow for years.
The previously unreported episode shows how successful the Chinese were in disrupting American spying efforts and stealing secrets years before a well-publicized breach in 2015 gave Beijing access to thousands of government personnel records, including intelligence contractors. The C.I.A. considers spying in China one of its top priorities, but the country's extensive security apparatus makes it exceptionally hard for Western spy services to develop sources there.
At a time when the C.I.A. is trying to figure out how some of its most sensitive documents were leaked onto the internet two months ago by WikiLeaks, and the F.B.I. investigates possible ties between President Trump's campaign and Russia, the unsettled nature of the China investigation demonstrates the difficulty of conducting counterespionage investigations into sophisticated spy services like those in Russia and China.
The C.I.A. and the F.B.I. both declined to comment.
Details about the investigation have been tightly held. Ten current and former American officials described the investigation on the condition of anonymity because they did not want to be identified discussing the information.
Image Investigators still disagree how it happened, but the unsettled nature of the China investigation demonstrates the difficulty of conducting counterespionage investigations into sophisticated spy services. Credit Carolyn Kaster/Associated Press.. The first signs of trouble emerged in 2010. At the time, the quality of the C.I.A.'s information about the inner workings of the Chinese government was the best it had been for years, the result of recruiting sources deep inside the bureaucracy in Beijing, four former officials said. Some were Chinese nationals who the C.I.A. believed had become disillusioned with the Chinese government's corruption.
But by the end of the year, the flow of information began to dry up. By early 2011, senior agency officers realized they had a problem: Assets in China, one of their most precious resources, were disappearing.
The F.B.I. and the C.I.A. opened a joint investigation run by top counterintelligence officials at both agencies. Working out of a secret office in Northern Virginia, they began analyzing every operation being run in Beijing. One former senior American official said the investigation had been code-named Honey Badger.
As more and more sources vanished, the operation took on increased urgency. Nearly every employee at the American Embassy was scrutinized, no matter how high ranking. Some investigators believed the Chinese had cracked the encrypted method that the C.I.A. used to communicate with its assets. Others suspected a traitor in the C.I.A., a theory that agency officials were at first reluctant to embrace '-- and that some in both agencies still do not believe.
Their debates were punctuated with macabre phone calls '-- ''We lost another one'' '-- and urgent questions from the Obama administration wondering why intelligence about the Chinese had slowed.
The mole hunt eventually zeroed in on a former agency operative who had worked in the C.I.A.'s division overseeing China, believing he was most likely responsible for the crippling disclosures. But efforts to gather enough evidence to arrest him failed, and he is now living in another Asian country, current and former officials said.
There was good reason to suspect an insider, some former officials say. Around that time, Chinese spies compromised National Security Agency surveillance in Taiwan '-- an island Beijing claims is part of China '-- by infiltrating Taiwanese intelligence, an American partner, according to two former officials. And the C.I.A. had discovered Chinese operatives in the agency's hiring pipeline, according to officials and court documents.
But the C.I.A.'s top spy hunter, Mark Kelton, resisted the mole theory, at least initially, former officials say. Mr. Kelton had been close friends with Brian J. Kelley, a C.I.A. officer who in the 1990s was wrongly suspected by the F.B.I. of being a Russian spy. The real traitor, it turned out, was Mr. Hanssen. Mr. Kelton often mentioned Mr. Kelley's mistreatment in meetings during the China episode, former colleagues say, and said he would not accuse someone without ironclad evidence.
Those who rejected the mole theory attributed the losses to sloppy American tradecraft at a time when the Chinese were becoming better at monitoring American espionage activities in the country. Some F.B.I. agents became convinced that C.I.A. handlers in Beijing too often traveled the same routes to the same meeting points, which would have helped China's vast surveillance network identify the spies in its midst.
Some officers met their sources at a restaurant where Chinese agents had planted listening devices, former officials said, and even the waiters worked for Chinese intelligence.
This carelessness, coupled with the possibility that the Chinese had hacked the covert communications channel, would explain many, if not all, of the disappearances and deaths, some former officials said. Some in the agency, particularly those who had helped build the spy network, resisted this theory and believed they had been caught in the middle of a turf war within the C.I.A.
Still, the Chinese picked off more and more of the agency's spies, continuing through 2011 and into 2012. As investigators narrowed the list of suspects with access to the information, they started focusing on a Chinese-American who had left the C.I.A. shortly before the intelligence losses began. Some investigators believed he had become disgruntled and had begun spying for China. One official said the man had access to the identities of C.I.A. informants and fit all the indicators on a matrix used to identify espionage threats.
After leaving the C.I.A., the man decided to remain in Asia with his family and pursue a business opportunity, which some officials suspect that Chinese intelligence agents had arranged.
Officials said the F.B.I. and the C.I.A. lured the man back to the United States around 2012 with a ruse about a possible contract with the agency, an arrangement common among former officers. Agents questioned the man, asking why he had decided to stay in Asia, concerned that he possessed a number of secrets that would be valuable to the Chinese. It's not clear whether agents confronted the man about whether he had spied for China.
The man defended his reasons for living in Asia and did not admit any wrongdoing, an official said. He then returned to Asia.
By 2013, the F.B.I. and the C.I.A. concluded that China's success in identifying C.I.A. agents had been blunted '-- it is not clear how '-- but the damage had been done.
The C.I.A. has tried to rebuild its network of spies in China, officials said, an expensive and time-consuming effort led at one time by the former chief of the East Asia Division. A former intelligence official said the former chief was particularly bitter because he had worked with the suspected mole and recruited some of the spies in China who were ultimately executed.
China has been particularly aggressive in its espionage in recent years, beyond the breach of the Office of Personnel Management records in 2015, American officials said. Last year, an F.B.I. employee pleaded guilty to acting as a Chinese agent for years, passing sensitive technology information to Beijing in exchange for cash, lavish hotel rooms during foreign travel and prostitutes.
In March, prosecutors announced the arrest of a longtime State Department employee, Candace Marie Claiborne, accused of lying to investigators about her contacts with Chinese officials. According to the criminal complaint against Ms. Claiborne, who pleaded not guilty, Chinese agents wired cash into her bank account and showered her with gifts that included an iPhone, a laptop and tuition at a Chinese fashion school. In addition, according to the complaint, she received a fully furnished apartment and a stipend.
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Botched CIA Communications System Helped Blow Cover of Chinese Agents '' Foreign Policy
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 02:49
It was considered one of the CIA's worst failures in decades: Over a two-year period starting in late 2010, Chinese authorities systematically dismantled the agency's network of agents across the country, executing dozens of suspected U.S. spies. But since then, a question has loomed over the entire debacle.
How were the Chinese able to roll up the network?
Now, nearly eight years later, it appears that the agency botched the communication system it used to interact with its sources, according to five current and former intelligence officials. The CIA had imported the system from its Middle East operations, where the online environment was considerably less hazardous, and apparently underestimated China's ability to penetrate it.
''The attitude was that we've got this, we're untouchable,'' said one of the officials who, like the others, declined to be named discussing sensitive information. The former official described the attitude of those in the agency who worked on China at the time as ''invincible.''
Other factors played a role as well, including China's alleged recruitment of former CIA officer Jerry Chun Shing Lee around the same time. Federal prosecutors indicted Lee earlier this year in connection with the affair.
But the penetration of the communication system seems to account for the speed and accuracy with which Chinese authorities moved against the CIA's China-based assets.
''You could tell the Chinese weren't guessing. The Ministry of State Security [which handles both foreign intelligence and domestic security] were always pulling in the right people,'' one of the officials said.
''When things started going bad, they went bad fast.''
The former officials also said the real number of CIA assets and those in their orbit executed by China during the two-year period was around 30, though some sources spoke of higher figures. The New York Times, which first reported the story last year, put the number at ''more than a dozen.'' All the CIA assets detained by Chinese intelligence around this time were eventually killed, the former officials said.
The CIA, FBI, and National Security Agency declined to comment for this story. The Chinese Embassy in Washington did not respond to requests for comment.
At first, U.S. intelligence officials were ''shellshocked,'' said one former official. Eventually, rescue operations were mounted, and several sources managed to make their way out of China.
One of the former officials said the last CIA case officer to have meetings with sources in China distributed large sums of cash to the agents who remained behind, hoping the money would help them flee.
When the intelligence breach became known, the CIA formed a special task force along with the FBI to figure out what went wrong. During the investigation, the task force identified three potential causes of the failure, the former officials said: A possible agent had provided Chinese authorities with information about the CIA asset network, some of the CIA's spy work had been sloppy and might have been detected by Chinese authorities, and the communications system had been compromised. The investigators concluded that a ''confluence and combination of events'' had wiped out the spy network, according to one of the former officials.
Eventually, U.S. counterintelligence officials identified Lee, the former CIA officer who had worked extensively in Beijing, as China's likely informant. Court documents suggest Lee was in contact with his handlers at the Ministry of State Security through at least 2011.
Chinese authorities paid Lee hundreds of thousands of dollars for his efforts, according to the documents. He was indicted in May of this year on a charge of conspiracy to commit espionage.
But Lee's alleged betrayal alone could not explain all the damage that occurred in China during 2011 and 2012, the former officials said. Information about sources is so highly compartmentalized that Lee would not have known their identities. That fact and others reinforced the theory that China had managed to eavesdrop on the communications between agents and their CIA handlers.
When CIA officers begin working with a new source, they often use an interim covert communications system'--in case the person turns out to be a double agent.
The communications system used in China during this period was internet-based and accessible from laptop or desktop computers, two of the former officials said.
This interim, or ''throwaway,'' system, an encrypted digital program, allows for remote communication between an intelligence officer and a source, but it is also separated from the main communications system used with vetted sources, reducing the risk if an asset goes bad.
Although they used some of the same coding, the interim system and the main covert communication platform used in China at this time were supposed to be clearly separated. In theory, if the interim system were discovered or turned over to Chinese intelligence, people using the main system would still be protected'--and there would be no way to trace the communication back to the CIA. But the CIA's interim system contained a technical error: It connected back architecturally to the CIA's main covert communications platform. When the compromise was suspected, the FBI and NSA both ran ''penetration tests'' to determine the security of the interim system. They found that cyber experts with access to the interim system could also access the broader covert communications system the agency was using to interact with its vetted sources, according to the former officials.
In the words of one of the former officials, the CIA had ''fucked up the firewall'' between the two systems.
U.S. intelligence officers were also able to identify digital links between the covert communications system and the U.S. government itself, according to one former official'--links the Chinese agencies almost certainly found as well. These digital links would have made it relatively easy for China to deduce that the covert communications system was being used by the CIA. In fact, some of these links pointed back to parts of the CIA's own website, according to the former official.
The covert communications system used in China was first employed by U.S. security forces in war zones in the Middle East, where the security challenges and tactical objectives are different, the sources said. ''It migrated to countries with sophisticated counterintelligence operations, like China,'' one of the officials said.
The system was not designed to withstand the scrutiny of a place like China, where the CIA faced a highly sophisticated intelligence service and a completely different online environment.
As part of China's Great Firewall, internet traffic there is watched closely, and unusual patterns are flagged. Even in 2010, online anonymity of any kind was proving increasingly difficult.
Once Chinese intelligence obtained access to the interim communications system,­ penetrating the main system would have been relatively straightforward, according to the former intelligence officials. The window between the two systems may have only been open for a few months before the gap was closed, but the Chinese broke in during this period of vulnerability.
Precisely how the system was breached remains unclear. The Ministry of State Security might have run a double agent who was given the communication platform by his CIA handler. Another possibility is that Chinese authorities identified a U.S. agent'--perhaps through information provided by Lee'--and seized that person's computer. Alternatively, authorities might have identified the system through a pattern analysis of suspicious online activities.
China was so determined to crack the system that it had set up a special task force composed of members of the Ministry of State Security and the Chinese military's signals directorate (roughly equivalent to the NSA), one former official said.
Once one person was identified as a CIA asset, Chinese intelligence could then track the agent's meetings with handlers and unravel the entire network. (Some CIA assets whose identities became known to the Ministry of State Security were not active users of the communications system, the sources said.)
One of the former officials said the agency had ''strong indications'' that China shared its findings with Russia, where some CIA assets were using a similar covert communications system. Around the time the CIA's source network in China was being eviscerated, multiple sources in Russia suddenly severed their relationship with their CIA handlers, according to an NBC News report that aired in January'--and confirmed by this former official.
The failure of the communications system has reignited a debate within the intelligence community about the merits of older, lower-tech methods for covert interactions with sources, according to the former officials.
There is an inherent paradox to covert communications systems, one of the former officials said: The easier a system is to use, the less secure it is.
The former officials said CIA officers operating in China since the debacle had reverted to older methods of communication, including interacting surreptitiously in person with sources. Such methods can be time-consuming and carry their own risks.
The disaster in China has led some officials to conclude that internet-based systems, even ones that employ sophisticated encryption, can never be counted on to shield assets.
''Will a system always stay encrypted, given the advances in technology? You're supposed to protect people forever,'' one of the former officials said.
National Public Media This is NPR. NPR For Brands | National Public Media
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 00:15
We'll admit, we're not your typical media partner.But what we offer is something better. NPR has built a unique trust and connection with our audiences. And delivers an environment where brands can do the same. Reach, impression, efficiency '-- all that marketing jargon means something more to us.
Expect more from your media buy.
Discover what NPR can do for your brand.
This is reach. Making connections '-- at scale NPR may be the #1 podcast publisher in America with 16.8M monthly users,1 but numbers are only part of reach. It's the connection listeners have with NPR that drives performance for sponsors: 80% of NPR podcast listeners hold a more positive opinion of brands that support NPR.2
This is efficiency. When 15 seconds is more memorable than 30 Designed with transparency and authenticity in mind, NPR's crafted 15-second radio sponsor messages are 23% more memorable than traditional radio ads, on average.3 In every NPR environment, NPR audiences want the facts '' from their news stories and their sponsor messages.
This is impression. Being sought after, not just heard Audiences are more emotionally engaged when listening to NPR3, driving impact when your brand has the floor: 71% of NPR listeners have a more positive opinion of NPR sponsors, and 70% prefer to buy products and services from those brands.4
This is attention. A moment without multitasking Undivided attention isn't gone for good. At least, not with NPR's audience. Nearly half of NPR listeners say they ''never'' or ''rarely'' use other media while listening to NPR.5 It's just the listener, NPR and your brand's message.
Work With Us.Our Approach to Driving Connection for Your Brand Media Strategy Build a custom, cross-platform media plan that supports your KPIs
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Find Out What NPR Can Do For Your Brand Connect with NPR's sponsorship team at National Public Media. Digiday named them one of the top sales teams this year for their overall effectiveness in driving performance for clients. And they would love to get to know you and your brand!
Sources
1. Podtrac, July 20182. NPR Podcast User Survey via NPR Listens, 20183. Neuro-Insight, NPR Sponsorship Effectiveness Study, 20184. Lightspeed Research, NPR Sponsorship Survey, March 2017 5. Lightspeed Research, NPR Sponsorship Survey, November 2016
Water levels drop at Lake Mead, Lake Powell amid drought
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 00:12
PHOENIX '-- Water levels at Lake Mead and Lake Powell are dropping to dangerous levels, reflecting the Colorado River's worsening ''structural deficit,'' scientists said.
Scientists from the Colorado River Research Group said Lake Powell has declined because of extra water releases flowing into Lake Mead, the Arizona Republic reported last week.
''I want people to know that what's going on at Lake Mead is very, very closely tied to what's going on Lake Powell,'' Doug Kenney said, the group's chair and a professor at the University of Colorado. ''We're draining Lake Powell to prop it up.''
Lake Powell is about 48 percent full, and Lake Mead is about 38 percent full. By the end of the year, Powell's levels are projected to fall 94 feet (29 meters) below where the reservoir stood in 2000 when it was nearly full.
The Colorado River basin, which feeds the two reservoirs, has been drying out over the last two decades, scientists said. With the demands from farms and cities exceeding the available the water supply, the strains on the river and reservoirs are being compounded by growing population, drought and climate change.
The Colorado River and its tributaries support about 40 million people and more than 7,800 square miles (20,200 square kilometers) of farmland.
''Continuing this operational pattern will further drain Lake Powell and erode the benefits associated with its water storage,'' the researchers said their report. ''If storage in Lake Powell cannot rebound in an era where the Upper Basin consumes less than two-thirds of its legal apportionment, then the crisis is already real.''
The river management system allocates equal portions of the water between the four Upper Basin states and the Lower Basin states. A far lesser portion is allocated to Mexico where the river ends.
''Better options might be found by thinking outside of this familiar framework. Lakes Mead and Powell, after all, are essentially one giant reservoir,'' the group said. ''Managing '-- and thinking '-- of these facilities as two distinct reservoirs, one for the benefit of the Upper Basin and one for the Lower, now seems outdated.''
The scientists suggested it could be time to reform the management system.
___
Information from: The Arizona Republic, http://www.azcentral.com
Exclusive: P-8 Poseidon Flies With Shadowy Radar System Attached
Wed, 05 Sep 2018 00:02
The P-8 Poseidon, an aircraft that has been levitated in public awareness by glowing news reports during the search for MH370, has now been spotted sporting a massive ventral radar system, one that has a very shadowy past.
Exclusive pictures obtained by Foxtrot Alpha, taken by aviation photographer and friend of the site Russell Hill at Boeing Field in Seattle, where P-8 testing continues to take place, show the installation of the huge pontoon-like pod carried on the Poseidon's forward centerline. This boxy appendage is none other than a new and improved form of the shadowy Littoral Surveillance Radar System (LSRS), known as the Advanced Airborne Sensor (AAS).
This large flying radar was originally born as the AN/APS-149 in the highly classified "black" world. The basic goal of this advanced radar system program was to provide multi-function moving target detection and tracking, as well as high resolution ground mapping, all at standoff ranges. Additionally, the LSRS needed to work in over-water and over-land scenarios, including the area where those two mediums meet, known as the "littoral zone." This geographically complex coastal region has proven to be a challenging environment for traditional radar systems, and the Littoral Surveillance Radar System, which began development in the middle of the last decade, was designed with it primarily in mind.
The LSRS has been quietly flying on a small number of Navy P-3C Orion's for some years, and the results have been described as "game changing." It is said the sensor is so sensitive that it can even pick up a formation of people moving over open terrain. Also, the speed of the system's double sided AESA array allows for multi-mode operations at one time with near 360 degree coverage, meaning that scanning, mapping, tracking and classifying targets can all happen near simultaneously, resulting in massive amounts of data for multiple platforms and decision makers around the theater and beyond to exploit. It is also said that the system works incredibly well for tracking high value targets, and is able to consistently follow their vehicles, map the locations they frequent for movement, and basically make it very hard for them to hide.
The more advanced Airborne Aerial Sensor seen in the recent pictures from Boeing field has to be sensitive and smart enough to detect and track moving targets, otherwise known as moving target indicator (MTI) mode, on the shore and at sea at the same time, while also providing extremely high resolution synthetic aperture (SAR) and inverse synthetic aperture (ISAR) radar capabilities. In synthetic aperture modes, the AAS provides picture-like synthetic radar imagery of both inland and ocean areas at the same time, and would offer fine enough resolution that targets could be further investigated and classified without relying on optical sensors. In fact, the system should be able to accomplish this automatically much like MQ-4C Triton Broad Area Maritime Surveillance unmanned aircraft system.
The AAS's ultra fast scanning active electronically scanned array (AESA) antenna system, tied to advanced computer processors, would theoretically allow the P-8 to detect a moving target in a cluttered bay or inlet, and then shoot a powerful and tight beam of radar energy at that target to take a "SAR picture" of it and thus judge its identity. If the contact is deemed hostile, the radar can continue to track the target as it moves while still scanning for and tracking others as well. This data, which can be collected by a P-8 well over a hundred miles away, can then be transmitted via data link off the aircraft for exploitation by other weapons platforms.
For instance, once a P-8, orbiting over a hundred miles off an enemy's coast, has identified a hostile patrol boat guarding its homeport, it can send that "target track" to a Super Hornet, flying about fifty miles closer to the enemy's shore, and request an attack. The P-8 has done this via using its Advanced Airborne Sensor to detect that ship's motion amongst the port's clutter, and then by instantly employing a beam of radar energy to survey and classify the target. The Super Hornet crew can then fire a standoff missile at the target, such as a SLAM-ER.
The Super Hornet would be receiving the P-8's radar data on the target in question continuously via data link, and would be forwarding this information in real time to the missile as it makes its way toward the hapless patrol boat. Once the missile reaches the point at which its own terminal guidance sensors can lock onto the patrol ship, the data link is no longer needed and the targeted ship will either be destroyed by the missile or would have to be re-attacked.
The Poseidon can also deliver a damage assessment analysis via generating a SAR picture of the target and watching its telemetry after the missile's supposed time of impact. Tests like the scenario explained above, using "third party" targeting data to hit moving targets with networked weaponry, have occurred in building succession over the last decade and now include the use of standoff gravity weapons against moving targets.
Not only is a P-8 packing the AAS, a strategic juggernaut and a force multiplier for many "shooters" and decision makers in the combat theater, but it also gives the Poseidon its own super sensor for which to rain hell down onto the enemy. The P-8 is no airliner, it can pack a serious punch. Its wing hardpoints and weapons bay can carry both standoff and direct attack munitions, and in the more pervasive of air combat environments the P-8 does not need a Super Hornet or a Tomahawk cruise missile to do its reaping. It could detect that same patrol boat as we just hypothetically discussed and pickle off an advanced small diameter bomb of its own, for which it will be able to carry dozens. This weapon has a glide distance of up to fifty miles when launched from on high. Once again, using a the AAS's targeting updates that are broadcast via data link to the weapon for navigation, the small winged glide bomb would make its way within deadly reach of its target.
By giving the P-8 standoff weaponry, and a radar that can take full advantage of it, the "kill chain" can be shortened dramatically. Additionally, a P-8 acting as both the sensor platform and shooter frees up valuable tactical assets to do other things in other places, which is a huge plus in an age of shrinking defense budgets and aircraft inventories.
The P-8/AAS pair's third party targeting capabilities may also be a better alternative to using drones to attack high value targets in "sensitive" areas of the globe. A standoff missile, that uses the AAS's radar data, launched from the P-8 loitering far off the coast of a lawless, or even semi-friendlynation, may be equally, if not more effective and less risky than deploying a slow moving and detectable Predator directly over the target in question.
What is also so promising about the AAS is the fact that it can work strictly over land when the mission dictates without having to optimize the sensor package physically. In this role the P-8 and its advanced radar system would be working in a very similar fashion to the USAF's E-8 J-STARS aircraft, a reality that some say led to the radar's deep classification in the first place.
A similar sensor to the AAS was originally intended for the USAF's E-10 "do everything" sensor and command aircraft. When that program fell apart, the Navy may have been left with a radar that is far superior to what is mounted on an entire fleet of USAF 707's, which consists of very old airframes that have a high cost of operation. In other words, the J-STARS fleet could have been vulnerable to the Littoral Surveillance Radar System's own success.
With this in mind, compartmentalizing the program deep within the Navy may have saved it from being shot down via the boys in blue who would protect their existing, even if potentially inferior, ground moving target indicator mission at all costs. Although some of this is speculative, this same story has come up again and again, both in the press and in my own discussions with people associated with the communities that deployed and developed the LSRS.
Beyond the AAS's primary modes of operation, there may be other uses for a large flying AESA array with plenty of power available to flow through it via the P-8's large electricity generating capability. These include detecting and tracking low flying and stealthy cruise missiles as well as electronic warfare. Both of which are high priorities for the DoD right now.
On the electronic warfare front, much smaller AESA radars are known to be capable of jamming individual enemy radar systems, producing fake targets and even frying the enemy's electronic components via hitting them with a very tight and powerful beam of energy. Even cyber attack is said to be well within the AESA array's potential playbook.
Considering that the F-35, with all its electronic warfare and stealth capabilities, will most likely still need standoff jamming support during operations in contested airspace, a large array like the P-8's AAS could be just what the Navy, and the USAF for that matter, ordered. Being able to fly far outside the enemy's surface to air missile engagement zone, for long periods of time, while firing invisible beams of energy that confuse, fry or corrupt an enemy's air defense systems as they come on line to threaten coalition aircraft, would be a highly sought after capability. Also, AESA arrays are known to be the ultimate in high speed communications transmitters, and a P-8 equipped with the AAS while working as a battlefield data fusion center would be able to send a massive amount of information far over the horizon, in a secure manner, all in a blink of an eye.
The sudden arrival of the AAS on the P-8 Poseidon is just another aspect to the aircraft's growing capabilities and reputation. Although the airliner turned maritime warrior has had teething problems, and some doubt it abilities to operate in the low level patrol environment, the concept of finally building a large economical aircraft capable of long duration flights, and that you can attach seemingly anything to, including weapons, is becoming a very attractive concept, one that many of us have been predicting would be a game changer for years.
In the end, I think it would be more of a probability than a possibility that the P-8 becomes the manned multi-role sensor and weapons truck of choice for all the services going forward, and it will be interesting to see what new blisters, pods and weapons, yet alone the clear possibility of the letters U S A F, appear on its wings and fuselage in the coming years,
For a general overview on P-8 you can take a look at Boeing's brochure here.
Photo credit: Russell Hill, USAF (JSTARS pic), Boeing (networked P-8 and USAF P-8 rendering), P-3 public domain.
Ari Fleischer and Brit Hume weigh in on Bob Woodward's new book (And Trump won't like it one bit)
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 19:40
As we told you earlier, excerpts from Bob Woodward's new book, ''Fear: Trump in the White House'' are out and it's a pretty safe bet that the White House will not be happy with any of them.
But, before the president or anyone else can shout ''Fake News!'' about it, here's former George W. Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer with a pretty strong defense of Woodward's reporting:
I've been on the receiving end of a Bob Woodward book. There were quotes in it I didn't like. But never once '' never '' did I think Woodward made it up. Anonymous sources have looser lips and may take liberties. But Woodward always plays is straight. Someone told it to him.
'-- Ari Fleischer (@AriFleischer) September 4, 2018
Bob Woodward approves!
From @AriFleischer, the Republican former White House Press Secretary for President George W. Bush: https://t.co/07Tfx6v5rJ
'-- Bob Woodward (@realBobWoodward) September 4, 2018
And libs are doing a little happy dance over his tweet:
When even Ari Fleischer says we should trust Woodward's book. https://t.co/Xreke9MuQX
'-- John Aravosis 🇺🇸 (@aravosis) September 4, 2018
When you've lost Ari'... oh man. https://t.co/A9AuzAQMbj
'-- Calvin (@calvinstowell) September 4, 2018
Ari Fleischer SIR welcome to the #Resistan ahhhh never mind [swigs rubbing alcohol] https://t.co/FBkeP9GLNc
'-- Bill Corbett (@BillCorbett) September 4, 2018
And here's Brit Hume takes Woodward's reporting as fact as well but sees it as good news that there are people in the White House who can contain the president:
Woodward's accounts of chaos and dysfunction in the Trump WH suggest he has been repeatedly restrained by advisers from his most reckless impulses. And to think there are never-Trumpers on the right who think good people should not serve this president. Good thing they do.
'-- Brit Hume (@brithume) September 4, 2018
But this does raise the issue that if Hume believes the book to be accurate, than there might be a problem:
Brit, if you believe the book, then you believe that the President of the United States is clinically insane, your first concern is to hit the Never Trumpers? https://t.co/FIXmlU6HVc
'-- The Reagan Battalion (@ReaganBattalion) September 4, 2018
The question becomes what does Hume want these good people in the White House to do next:
Holy hell, Brit. ''You Never Trumpers should be more supportive of people covering for and enabling an utterly dangerous president his own CoS thinks is an unhinged idiot.'' How about: ''Whoa, you Never Trumpers were right and it's worse than we realized; Congress must act.'' https://t.co/VhBgxqOiCB
'-- Tom Nichols (@RadioFreeTom) September 4, 2018
Impeachment?
Then let's hope the next step is for those good people to find a way to serve the American people even better by convincing Trump for the good of the country to step down. Do we want to spend the next two+ years with advisors continuing to play Patriot missile to Trump's scuds? https://t.co/UdN7kNbZGG
'-- Jeryl Bier (@JerylBier) September 4, 2018
***
Related:
New Bob Woodward book says military, White House staff refused to follow orders from President Trump https://t.co/WfD8nrAG2i
'-- Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) September 4, 2018
John Kelly Calls Trump 'Idiot,' Trump Calls Sessions 'Retarded' in Bob Woodward's New Book
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 19:39
See update below
It looks like WaPo journalist Bob Woodward's new book is another bash-fest symptomatic of Trump Derangement syndrome.
In his upcoming book, Fear: Trump in the White House, Woodward describes a White House in chaos where everyone is on edge. Staffers claim the president is ''unhinged,'' while close Trump confidantes speak ill of him behind his back.According to Woodward, Chief of Staff John Kelly has called Trump ''an idiot.''
From a WaPo article about the book:
In one small group meeting, Kelly said of Trump: ''He's an idiot. It's pointless to try to convince him of anything. He's gone off the rails. We're in Crazytown. I don't even know why any of us are here. This is the worst job I've ever had.''
A passage in Fear also claims President Trump at one point called Attorney General Jeff Sessions a ''mentally retarded'' ''dumb Southerner.''
'''This guy is mentally retarded. He's this dumb Southerner,''' Woodward quotes Trump as saying, indicating the president also made fun of his southern accent. '''He couldn't even be a one-person country lawyer down in Alabama,''' Trump supposedly remarked.
Elsewhere in the book, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis reportedly describes the president's comprehension as that of ''a fifth or sixth grader.'' It also elaborates on former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson reportedly calling Trump ''a fucking moron.''
In another passage, Trump is quoted as calling the Russian Witch Hunt a ''goddamned hoax,'' and purportedly admitted he does not want to testify in the FBI's collusion probe.
Speaking to Woodward in an August 14 phone call, released by The Washington Post Tuesday, Trump pushed back against claims in Fear, telling Woodward his book was likely a ''negative'' and ''inaccurate'' portrayal of his White House '-- especially since he was unable to be reached for comment.
Woodward: I've got to go talk to people and see them outside of the White House and outside of their offices, and gained a lot of insight and documentation. And it's '-- you know, it's a tough look at the world and your administration and you.
Trump: Right. Well, I assume that means it's going to be a negative book. But you know, I'm some '-- I'm sort of 50 percent used to that. [Laughter] That's all right. Some are good and some are bad. Sounds like this is going to be a bad one.
Asked by the president if he named his sources, Woodward did not confirm he ''named names'' in the book.
Woodward: '...I think there's nothing in this book that doesn't come from a firsthand source. Is that correct, Evelyn?Woodward Assistant Evelyn Duffy: I believe that's '--Trump: But are you naming names? Or do you just say sources?Woodward: Yeah, well, it names real incidents, so .'‰..Trump: No, but do you name sources? I mean, are you naming the people, or just say, people have said?Woodward: ''I say, at 2:00 on this day, the following happened, and everyone who's there, including yourself, is quoted. And I'm sorry I didn't get to ask you about these,'' Woodward told the president.
Trump has railed against unnamed ''sources'' providing anonymous tips to the media since the 2016 presidential campaign, calling most of the information provided by ''sources'' fake news and saying in most cases the sources are fabricated and non-existent.
Remember, don't believe "sources said" by the VERY dishonest media. If they don't name the sources, the sources don't exist.
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 30, 2016
NBC NEWS is wrong again! They cite ''sources'' which are constantly wrong. Problem is, like so many others, the sources probably don't exist, they are fabricated, fiction! NBC, my former home with the Apprentice, is now as bad as Fake News CNN. Sad!
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 4, 2018
When you see ''anonymous source,'' stop reading the story, it is fiction!
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 29, 2018
In a Tuesday article, President Trump's former attorney John Dowd told The Washington Examiner he's misquoted by Woodward in a passage where he's quoted as thinking the president is ''a fucking liar.''
Fear hits bookstores on September 11.
UPDATE: The White House and Chief of Staff John Kelly released comments Tuesday claiming Woodward's book is full of ''fabricated stories'' and lies.
The White House's statement, via CNBC:
''This book is nothing more than fabricated stories, many by former disgruntled employees, told to make the President look bad. While it is not always pretty, and rare that the press actually covers it, President Trump has broken through the bureaucratic process to deliver unprecedented successes for the American people.''
''Sometimes it is unconventional, but he always gets results. Democrats and their allies in the media understand the President's policies are working and with success like this, no one can beat him in 2020 '' not even close.''
Chief of Staff John Kelly's statement:
''The idea I ever called the President an idiot is not true. As I stated back in May and still firmly stand behind: ''I spend more time with the President than anyone else, and we have an incredibly candid and strong relationship. He always knows where I stand, and he and I both know this story is total BS. I'm committed to the President, his agenda, and our country. This is another pathetic attempt to smear people close to President Trump and distract from the administration's many successes.''
Follow @AdanSalazarWins
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/adan.salazar.735
Audio: #Trump Calls Out Bob Woodward For Lying In New Book#AlexJonesShow #infowars🚠#TuesdayThoughts #BoycottNike #1A #USA 🇺🇸https://t.co/dL4w4b9cKD
'-- Alex Jones (@RealAlexJones) September 4, 2018
'HAS to be a joke'! Was Barack Obama HIGH when he said this about Rahm Emanuel?
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 19:38
In case you missed it, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has decided not to seek re-election:
Mayor Rahm Emanuel won't run for re-election, he just announced, with his wife at his side pic.twitter.com/z0b5asbth3
'-- Gregory Pratt (@royalpratt) September 4, 2018
On my first day as Mayor, I promised to make tough decisions, even when it hurts. Today, the time has come to make another tough choice. As much as I love this job & will always love Chicago, I have decided not to seek re-election. https://t.co/bFlFuAxaPV https://t.co/R4IBJCArse
'-- Mayor Rahm Emanuel (@ChicagosMayor) September 4, 2018
And that's a damn shame. Because he's done such a great job. No, really! Just ask Creepy Jim Messina:
Thank you to @ChicagosMayor Rahm for a lifetime of public service. The world is a better place because of the work you have done.
'-- Jim Messina (@Messina2012) September 4, 2018
Is that so?
LOL https://t.co/miDqJ3YXTw
'-- Emily Zanotti (@emzanotti) September 4, 2018
pic.twitter.com/IcVPUE9Vc6
'-- Kevin Schurig (@AginKs) September 4, 2018
This has to be Rahm's burner account
'-- Blackhorse610 (@pturch) September 4, 2018
This has to be a joke.
'-- Greg B (@ramsangels) September 4, 2018
No way you typed that with a straight face
'-- Kirk G. Johnson (@Kirk75532505) September 4, 2018
You could've fooled Chicagoans, Jim.
Have you seen Chicago?
'-- 🇺🇸Paul L🇺🇸 (@TruPharaoh) September 4, 2018
Thousands of dead Chicagoans are unavailable to comment https://t.co/xF6ah4ieW6
'-- WhigsnTwigs (@WhigsnTwigs) September 4, 2018
Chicago shooting victims could not be reached for comment.
'-- John Doiron (@jfd1965) September 4, 2018
More than 1,000 people shot in Chicago so far this year https://t.co/6iiVx3ijue https://t.co/ye23KegbhV
'-- The Reagan Battalion (@ReaganBattalion) September 4, 2018
Thousands of dead residents were unavailable for comment.
'-- JWF (@JammieWF) September 4, 2018
The thousands of families who have had their loved ones murdered under his pathetic ''leadership'' would disagree.
'-- Jenny Woodruff (@JennyWoodruff3) September 4, 2018
Well, for the survivors. And not even then. Other than that'... https://t.co/Nr8IaMBxwx
'-- Anthony Bialy (@AnthonyBialy) September 4, 2018
But hey, don't just take Messina's word for it. Look who else is singing Emanuel's praises:
Obama praises Rahm Emanuel after he said he won't seek re-election: "Chicago is stronger for his leadership" https://t.co/ph32qcJPTX pic.twitter.com/BGcncNU7hi
'-- The Hill (@thehill) September 4, 2018
More from The Hill:
In a statement Tuesday shortly following Emanuel's announcement, the former president and Chicago resident said his city was ''stronger'' for Emanuel's leadership.
''With record job growth and record employment over his terms in office, Chicago is better and stronger for his leadership, and I was a better President for his wise counsel at a particularly perilous time for our country,'' Obama said.
''I've been blessed to call Rahm my friend,'' the former president added. ''Whatever he chooses to do next, I know he'll continue to make a positive difference, just as he has throughout his career in public service.''
That's cute.
Wait. What?
'-- Philip Semen Hofmore (@MeOnTheShowUs) September 4, 2018
How so, Barry?
'-- Momo Pnano (@MichaelPnano) September 4, 2018
Obama said what? Are you kidding me?
'-- MatthewJshow (@MatthewJshow) September 4, 2018
pic.twitter.com/ss1bYPdvG7
'-- Jules 🌹'­ (@MissJules5x) September 4, 2018
Sure thing, sport. ðŸ https://t.co/khMMbGNQUN
'-- ƧÐ...ƧΛП (@wayward_okie) September 4, 2018
As an avid Obama fan I must say, he is dead ass wrong on that assessment. Rahm Emanuel is terrible, was terrible and really always has been terrible.
'-- T.Ly (@tlyons507) September 4, 2018
***
Related:
'Unintelligible nonsense': Rahm Emanuel's statement about shootings in Chicago sends heads CRASHING to desks
New Mastodon instance focused on amateur radio and SWL, hosted by M0YNG: mastodon.radio
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 19:35
For those unfamiliar:
Mastodon is a distributed, federated social network that forms part of the Fediverse, an interconnected and decentralized network of independently operated servers.
Mastodon has microblogging features similar to Twitter. Each user is a member of a specific Mastodon server, known as an "instance" of the software, but can connect and communicate with users on other instances as well.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mastodon_(software)
Bitcoin Experts Pin Price Hopes On Early November -- Here's Why
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 15:50
Close-up of the hologram on the back of a physical bitcoin wallet card. This specific bitcoin wallet card is issued by the Money Museum Zurich and can be used to receive bitcoins from other people by showing the card's QR code.
The bitcoin price has been bouncing around from $6,000 to over $8,000 in recent months, but that could soon change. Many investors are looking forward to the U.S. Security and Exchange Commission's (SEC) decision later this month on whether to grant approval for a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) '-- something the SEC has previously rejected due to fears around bitcoin's wild price swings and price manipulation.
But others are looking beyond that, pointing to the New York Stock Exchange's parent company, Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), plans to roll out a bitcoin ETF on November 5.
In July, ICE revealed that it was launching a bitcoin and cryptocurrency platform called Bakkt in partnership with coffee chain Starbucks, software giant Microsoft, and Boston Consulting Group.
An ETF will be launched under Bakkt, which will also facilitate a scalable ecosystem for federally regulated markets and warehousing.
"Our new daily bitcoin contract will not be traded on margin, use leverage, or serve to create a paper claim on a real asset," Bakkt CEO Kelly Loeffler said in a blog post. " This supports market integrity and differentiates our effort from existing futures and crypto exchanges which allow for margin, leverage and cash settlement."
"I believe that [the bitcoin price] will hit $10,000 by the first week of November," Hermann Finnbj¶rnsson, founder and chief executive of bitcoin and cryptocurrency advisory firm Svandis told The Street. "I think that there are a lot of reasons to be bullish on bitcoin. [There's] Less than a 1% chance in my mind that bitcoin won't succeed."
Michael Terpin, a partner at Alphabit fund, echoed Finnbj¶rnsson's comments, saying: "Technology will adapt cryptocurrency to be something that you can go and buy on your phone."
This fresh wave of potential investment has given many hope that the bitcoin price will return to and then exceed its all-time highs of late last year, when bitcoin powered to almost $20,000 per coin.
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) must first declare Bakkt fraudulent free, however '-- though it is widely expected to do so.
The bitcoin price has been waiting for firmer news on investment and regulation over recent months.CoinDesk
Meanwhile, the SEC is currently weighing whether to approve a bitcoin ETF request filed through the Chicago Board of Exchange (CBOE) by New York-based VanEck and blockchain platform SolidX.
However, some influential voices in the bitcoin and cryptocurrency world have argued a bitcoin ETF will be bad for bitcoin in the long term.
Last month Andreas Antonopoulos, a tech entrepreneur-turned bitcoin evangelist, warned that '-- although he does expect an ETF to be granted approval by the SEC '-- it will not be a good thing for bitcoin or the wider cryptocurrency world.
"I'm going to burst your bubble," Antonopoulos said. "I know a lot of people really want to see an ETF happen because 'to the moon, and lambos,' but I think it is a terrible idea. I still think it is going to happen, I just think it is a terrible idea. I'm actually against ETFs. I think a Bitcoin ETF is going to be damaging to the ecosystem."
Canada Postpones Crypto, Blockchain Regulation Updates to 2020
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 15:25
Canada's government has effectively put the release of new cryptocurrency regulations on hold until 2020 instead of updating them this fall.
The federal government in Canada is preparing for the 2019 general election which has caused it to delay the release of the regulations until after this has taken place, and with a 12-month waiting period for new regulations to go into effect, they will not be active until 2020.
Mixed responsesA draft version of the regulations was shared with the public in June in which stricter controls on the cryptocurrency industry were outlined. Some have taken the delay as a positive sign that the government may be looking to review what they interpret as unfavorable conditions, while others have shared concerns that the decision may harm Canada's competitive edge in the growing industry.
The Blockchain Association of Canada (BAC) spoke to Bitcoin Magazine, saying that this should be perceived as a good thing for the Canadian blockchain and cryptocurrency sectors, and shared its confidence in the government's agenda. ''It may be best to observe and intervene as little as possible,'' BAC's Executive Director Kyle Kemper added.
Several participants have reportedly said that the vast amount of quality feedback to the June draft halted the government from implementing the bill before making amendments. A number of the country's blockchain companies and organizations were part of a discussion with Finance Canada officials in which they were able to vocalize their own opinions of the drafted regulations.
The Toronto-based Blockchain Research Institute (BRI) shared a report with government officials that included input from 70 industry participants, calling for a ''middle ground'' on regulations. While they recognized a substantive regulatory framework was required in order for Canada to remain competitive, too strict governance could well stifle innovation from the sector.
If input from key industry figures has been the main factor in causing the delay, local blockchain businesses should rest assured the next draft should reflect changes in their favor.
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111,000 Bitcoin Wallet Becomes Active After 4 Years of Dormancy
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 15:01
A Bitcoin wallet with BTC 111,114, worth around USD 800 million at current exchange rates, had been lying dormant since 2014 but recently became active according to an analysis from a Reddit user. A whole range of theories as to who is behind this wallet is cropping up. Some people think it's Satoshi, others say it's a wallet connected to the Silk Road. It's possible this wallet is connected to Mt Gox or perhaps it's just an anonymous whale investor.
From this old mega wallet, a total of USD 115 million was sent to crypto exchanges. Clearly, whoever owns this wallet has decided to cash out some of these Bitcoins or might be starting to actively trade. At the time the wallet was created four years ago, the Bitcoins were worth USD 71.5 million.
It has been speculated that around 4 million Bitcoins have been lost forever, and that sort of analysis usually just looks to see if wallets have been dormant for many years. This makes it questionable how many Bitcoins are really lost, since all of the big dormant wallets could just be people laying low and waiting for the right time to sell.
There is some speculation that the sudden re-activation of this wallet could cause a market downturn. However, there are billions of dollars worth of Bitcoin trading volume every day worldwide, and even if the Bitcoins from this wallet were all sold in a day it wouldn't have a dramatic impact on the market. In reality, these Bitcoins are being sold slowly and many of them are still being held, so this will have no noticeable impact on the market.
This is a good example of how robust the Bitcoin market is. The Bitcoin market can easily handle the sale of a billion dollars in Bitcoin since there is tremendous worldwide demand.
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University of Illinois makes massive free-tuition 'commitment'
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 14:58
Starting next year, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is pledging to waive all tuition and fees for new in-state students with family incomes below the state median.
According to the university, all incoming freshmen and transfer students under the age of 24 will be eligible for the ''Illinois Commitment'' program, which ''provides scholarship and grant funding to cover the full cost of tuition and campus fees...not covered by other federal, state, institutional, or private awards including Federal Pell Grant, State of Illinois MAP Program (MAP), and other awards.''
"It seems anomalous to me that a student whose family earns above that threshold (but not necessarily by much) is burdened with a bill of over $21,000 while his counterparts would get a full ride."
The program does not, however, cover the cost of room and board, course fees, summer/winter classes, study abroad, books, or other student expenses.
Still, some conservative student leaders suspect that the university may be biting off more than it can chew, financially, and worry that the generous aid package will further distort the higher education market.
[RELATED: University prez: Free tuition at public colleges is not enough]
''We're acutely aware that a number of students in our state who could be part of the Illinois family never even consider applying, simply because they don't believe that they could afford to attend the Urbana campus,'' UIUC Chancellor Robert J. Jones said in an official press release by the university.
''As a public university, we must see to it that talented students of all economic backgrounds in the state of Illinois have access to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,'' he asserted. ''With Illinois Commitment, we're taking a bold and necessary step to simplify the financial-aid concept and open the door to an Illinois education for more families in our state.''
Andreas C. Cangellaris, the school's vice chancellor for academic affairs and provost, noted that many qualified residents may have ruled out attending UIUC based solely on the sticker price.
''For first-generation college students or low- and moderate-income students, our concern is not whether they accept an offer of admission to Illinois. Our concern is whether they even apply to Illinois in the first place,'' Cangellaris said. ''Although we try to help students understand that considerable aid is available, it doesn't always translate into applications. As a consequence, many low- and moderate-income students are dissuaded from applying to Illinois from the start. Illinois Commitment provides a new pathway to an Illinois degree."
[RELATED: Hillary: NY free tuition plan a 'great step for progressives']
In order to qualify, a student must be an Illinois resident with a family income of $61,000 or less, which is approximately the current median income in Illinois. Their family's assets must also be less than $50,000, and the student must be a transfer or freshman student under the age of 24.
Senior Director of Strategic Communication Chris Harris told Campus Reform that the university estimates that about 2,000 students each year will be eligible for the expanded financial aid, which is ''about 23-24%'' of the typical incoming class.
''The program will provide $4 million of additional campus support per class beginning in Fall 2019 which will come from institutional support and private donations. This translates to $16 million annually after the first four years,'' Harris explained. ''This additional commitment is added to the $90 million in financial aid that we already provide.''
Harris also made clear that ''There will be no tuition increases or new fees assessed by the university to fund Illinois Commitment.''
''There is no limit on the number of students who receive support through the Illinois Commitment,'' Harris added. ''It really is as simple as we are saying. If you are an Illinois resident who earns admission, have a family income of $61,000 or less with less than $50,000 in assets, you will be eligible for free tuition and campus fees.
''This is exclusively a financial aid program and it does not impact our admissions standards or criteria,'' he concluded. ''We hope the Illinois Commitment significantly increases the number of talented and qualified high school students who choose to put the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign at the top of their college application lists in the coming years.''
[RELATED: CA Dems propose free tuition funded by tax on millionaires]
Some current students, however, remain skeptical of the program.
Jack Johnson, president of the Illini Republicans, suggested that the money might be better spent on alleviating the tuition burden across the board, rather than an all-or-nothing benefit based on income.
''For an engineering major who started fall 2016, in-state tuition is set at $17,040. This year, fees increase that number to $21,008,'' he told Campus Reform. ''It seems anomalous to me that a student whose family earns above that threshold (but not necessarily by much) is burdened with a bill of over $21,000 while his counterparts would get a full ride'--and not for academic or even athletic reasons.
''Additionally, we need to remember a few fundamental truths: higher education is not a right, and you don't need to go to college to succeed,'' he added. ''Helping students afford college is the right thing to do, but [only] to a certain extent. I feel that if the University needs to set tuition at heights exceeding $17,000 (in-state), maybe they should look towards using additional funds to lower the tuition burden of all rather than giving a free ride to a select minority that is subsidized by their classmates.''
[RELATED: Brown promises 'tuition-free' Master's for DACA students]
''I personally feel that aid should be merit-based,'' added Madeleine Hubbard, president of the TPUSA chapter at UIUC. ''I know many students who are not eligible for this financial aid but still come from families that cannot afford college due to private issues. These students have fantastic grades, yet are still taking out tens of thousands of dollars in student loans.''
She also fretted that the Illinois Commitment program may prove ''unsustainable'' in the long run, since setting the cutoff at the state median income means that many prospective students will be eligible.
''The University of Illinois already has quite a few financial problems and I do not believe this new program will alleviate them. I want college to be an option for high school students, but college is not for everyone,'' she told Campus Reform. ''Earning good grades in college requires hard work and sacrifice. Trade schools are just as honorable and often, trade school graduates make more money than college graduates. I fear that this new aid package will encourage more students to attend college when they should not.''
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @realblairnelson
Task force suggests 'compulsory social justice training'
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 14:58
A ''Social Justice Task Force'' is recommending that SUNY Plattsburgh make wide-ranging and potentially costly efforts to promote ''diversity and inclusion'' on campus.
In March, the State University of New York at Plattsburgh created a Social Justice Task Force as a response to a outrage over a racist snapchat sent by a student. The task force was charged with ''helping college leadership better understand matters of social justice, ensuring all voices are heard,'' and articulating ''further action steps the college should undertake and/or what other factors should be considered'' in order to achieve this goal.
"Organize and promote, across disciplines, yearly campus learning activities and events emphasizing diversity and social justice causes."
The task force issued its final report in an August 1 memo addressed to University President Dr. John Ettling, outlining 20 specific recommendations for promoting social justice both rhetorically and financially.
[RELATED: YDSA urges socialists to infiltrate public education]
Before introducing its suggestions, the memo identifies seven ''key precepts of social justice'' that the task force devised based on conversations with ''campus and community stakeholders.''
According to the task force, social justice means that ''a community must foster access to positive experiences and productive opportunities for all of its members,'' as well as ''ensure the rights of all of its members'' because ''marginalized groups are entitled to have their voices heard.''
''Wrongs and harm are to be righted in a way free of blame and judgment,'' the document continues, adding that ''members of a community must exhibit consistent recognition of the inherent worth, dignity, and contribution of each person in that community.''
In addition, the task force asserts that ''members of a community are morally bound to keep those forces in check that would work against justice, equality, and self-determination,'' elaborating that a community is ''obligated to recognize bias and to responsibly, fairly, and productively address the ways privilege can undermine equitable treatment of its members.''
''The communication by and within a community should be inclusive, not divisive, and used in a manner that nurtures the positive development of its members,'' another bullet point states. ''Members of a community should promote understanding of the sensitivities and experiences of others, avoid generalizing about groups and individuals within that community, and communicate with civility.''
[RELATED: Marquette forum says 'white community' 'perpetuates racism']
With those principles in mind, the task force crafted suggestions for how SUNY Plattsburgh can promote social justice among students and faculty members, as well as with its own rhetoric and policies.
First, the memo suggests that the administration ''invest in a culture of social justice by hiring a chief diversity officer,'' ''allocate resources to transition the affirmative action officer position into a full-time position,'' ''invest in additional support for the investigative arm of the Title IX office,'' and ''formulate and approve a long-term strategic plan, with measurable goals to recruit, hire, and retain more faculty from underrepresented groups.''
Turning its attention to the category of Education and Professional Development, the document goes on to recommend that the school create an ''employee conduct manual'' that can be incorporated ''as part of a comprehensive and compulsory social justice training program for employees and service personnel.''
The task force also proposes that all future freshman and transfer orientations should include a "detailed and comprehensive segment on social justice, diversity, inclusion, and equity,'' though it also calls for orientation information to incorporate ''information regarding First Amendment principles and ways they apply to discourse, dialogue, debate, and behavior in a college setting.''
The administration should also ''organize and promote, across disciplines, yearly campus learning activities and events emphasizing diversity and social justice causes,'' as well as ''highlight the diversity of the college and the region'' whenever possible.
[RELATED: Berkeley task force blames conservatives for leftist violence]
With regard to students, the memo calls on administrators to ''actively and visibly encourage faculty-mentored, student-led initiatives that promote ideals and behaviors of inclusion and social justice...and purposefully engage and educate members of the college and community about such ideals.''
The task force even took the time to specify what it means to ''actively and visibly'' encourage social justice efforts, saying this entails ''promoting and sustaining such initiatives through the allocation of resources and continued public acknowledgment of the crucial nature and importance of those initiatives.''
In addition, the memo calls for the administration to ''expedite the completion of the 'Bias Act and Hate Crime Response Policy,''' and devise intake and exit surveys to query students about their ''impressions of issues related to social justice and campus climate.''
The memo concludes with a list of miscellaneous suggestions, such as incorporating diversity and social justice into the school's mission statement, signing the ''CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion Pledge,'' and ''continue and expand fundraising efforts for mechanisms promoting and sustaining diversity, inclusion, and social justice on campus.''
Moreover, the task force advocates establishing ''an independent, permanent social justice advisory group that will identify and monitor crucial social justice issues on campus,'' adding that the advisory group should also ''monitor and identify funding opportunities related to social justice issues.
[RELATED: Cornell task force suggests more funding for 'diverse hires']
Dr. Jonathan Slater, one of the task force's two co-chairs, told Campus Reform that it is now up to senior administrators to determine which of the suggestions to implement, and how.
''The Social Justice Task Force recommended to the president that the administration examine best practices for sustaining and promoting the mechanisms of social justice, diversity, and inclusion on college campuses, with the expectation that such practices will be used as benchmarks for SUNY Plattsburgh's own efforts to sustain and promote those mechanisms on campus,'' Slater explained.
''The recommendation does not call for compilation of a list, but rather the elaboration of a set of best practices,'' he added.
Executive Director of Communications and Public Affairs Ken Knelly told Campus Reform that the administration is pleased with the task force's report, but is still evaluating its recommendations.
''The recommendations are thoughtful and workable. The president publicly thanked the task force,'' he noted. ''Some points cover areas where we are already advancing. Campus leadership is examining all of these efforts collectively as it moves forward.''
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @celinedryan
Watch Live: WikiLeaks Reporter Disappears, CNN Expands Blacklist, Nike 'Just Did It'
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 14:57
Skip to contentTune in to the most censored broadcast in America Infowars.com - September 4, 2018 A WikiLeaks cybersecurity consultant has gone missing and CNN has shredded any morsel left of journalistic integrity they had left by going after companies who advertise on competing outlets. Also, Nike has selected former NFL player and originator of the kneeling controversy, Colin Kaepernick, as the face of a new ad campaign.
Watch Live: Wikileaks Reporter Disappears, CNN Expands Blacklist, Nike "Just Did It" https://t.co/fLJjYwZcV1
'-- RealNews (@RealNewsX2) September 4, 2018
Update on the strange disappearance of @ArjenKamphuis. Arjen left his hotel in Bod¸ on August 20. He had a ticket flying out of Trondheim on August 22. The train between the two takes ~10 hours, suggesting that he disappeared in within hours in Bod¸, Trondheim or on the train. https://t.co/t4OTJZGBeT
'-- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) September 2, 2018
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Reboot Your Dreamliner Every 248 Days To Avoid Integer Overflow
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 14:30
You may be used to rebooting a server every so often to ensure that it doesn't crash because of some resource problem, but what about a modern jet airliner like the Boeing 787?
The inevitable creep of software into engineering brings with it the problem of bugs. Embedded computer system engineers have a long history of trying to find ways of making software provably correct. Languages used for process control tend to be single-tasking as do their operating systems, and there are usually lots of hardware checks to make sure that nothing serious could go wrong.
This makes a recent directive from the US Federal Aviation Administration all the more shocking.
Basically it says that all Boeing 787 Dreamliners have to be switched off every 248 days. If they are not reset then the generator control units GCUs will go into failsafe mode and the plane will lose all electrical power.
Why exactly?
To quote the FAA directive:
This condition is caused by a software counter internal to the GCUs that will overflow after 248 days of continuous power. We are issuing this AD to prevent loss of all AC electrical power, which could result in loss of control of the airplane.
A simple guess suggests the the problem is a signed 32-bit overflow as 231 is the number of seconds in 248 days multiplied by 100, i.e. a counter in hundredths of of a second.
So, the problem is a simple classical overflow. You would think that this is something that could have been spotted by formal methods, but think for a moment how are you going to implement this sort of counter?
Your options are to increase the number of bits used, which puts off the overflow, or you could work with infinite precision arithmetic, which would slowly use up the available memory and finally bring the system down.
Perhaps the new overflow detection system from MIT, see MIT Finds Overflow Bugs, would have pointed it out and then the programmers could have implemented a test and a safe clock reset routine which is the best that could be hoped for.
Until there is a patch for the problem all Dreamliners have to be rebooted before the 248 day period is up. Apparently if the worse does happen and the GCUs overflow and switch off the power then the plane should have enough backup power from a lithium-ion battery for about 6 seconds while a ram air turbine deploys for emergency power generation. So, with luck, this isn't a bug that could cause planes to fall out of the sky.
One interesting fact is that the FAA claim that it will take about one hour to reboot the GCUs - so there clearly isn't a reset button.
Not a possible fix for the Dreamliner.
More cartoon fun at xkcd a webcomic of romance,sarcasm, math, and language
It is estimated that the Airbus A380, comparable in complexity to the Dreamliner, has more than 100 million lines of code.
Commentsor email your comment to: comments@i-programmer.info
Posting Instagram Sponsored Content Is the New Summer Job - The Atlantic
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 14:13
As long as you're a teen with a following.
Taylor Lorenz Aug 22, 2018 ShutterstockWhile some teens spent the summer of 2018 babysitting, bagging groceries, or scooping ice cream, thousands of others made hundreds of dollars'--and in some cases, much more'--the new-fashioned way: by doing sponsored content on Instagram.
With ''jobs you need to do a lot of training,'' says a 13-year-old Pennsylvanian who asked not to be named. ''Then you have to, like, physically go out and do the job for hours a day. Doing this, you can make one simple post, which doesn't take a while. That single post can earn you, like, $50.'' Last month, she started posting brand-sponsored Instagrams for her more than 8,000 followers. So far, she says, she's earned a couple hundred dollars.
Young people are still struggling to compete with older workers for seasonal minimum-wage and retail jobs, and increased academic demands have left them with little time for shift work. Still others are eager to earn money of their own, but at 12 or 13 aren't old enough to legally do so. Instagram is the one space where they have a competitive advantage, and, as Mary, a 14-year-old from California, told me, it's ''pretty much the easiest way, without becoming famous on the internet, to make money.''
Indeed, according to teens, all you need to do to make money this way is make at least one of your Instagram accounts public, amass a thousand or so followers (an easy threshold to meet), and reach out to brands you like on Instagram. If you have enough followers, the brands'--typically small clothing and accessories start-ups aiming to court Generation Z'--will even come to you.
Negotiation usually takes place entirely over Instagram direct message, and teens rarely sign formal contracts. Some companies send an article of clothing for the teen to wear in a picture; others just send images of items to be worked into a post. Sometimes they offer guidance on how they'd like their product featured and when the post should go up, but most brands trust the teen to create and post something that will resonate with their peers.
Helen Boogzel, the CEO of Boogzel Apparel, says her company receives a steady stream of messages from young people'--almost universally girls'--looking to make extra money, and that teen marketing has been critical to the young company's growth. ''Some companies buy positive reviews or try to get into fashion magazines,'' she says. ''That's fake and it kills your brand. It's better to work with teenagers directly and know their honest opinion about your brand. Our clothes are inspired by culture and the internet. Young people create this culture.''
They also, crucially, don't charge much: Depending on the teen's audience and experience, most shops typically pay $5 to $20 for a post.
''Teenagers are more affordable to work with because of their follower count and age,'' says Christy Oh, an 18-year-old who handles marketing for Doux Lashes, which sells fake eyelashes. ''They're not doing Insta as a full-time thing; they're just trying to make extra money, so it's not super expensive to partner with them.''
Kim, a 13-year-old in the New York City area, told me she charges brands $20 for a permanent post in her feed and $10 for one she deletes after 24 hours. ''I thought this might be a good way for me to make money over the summer,'' she says. ''Usually all I do over the summer is sit at home. It's hard to find jobs that take kids at my age, so this is the best option for me.'' Ella, who is also 13 and lives in Florida, charged $10 a post when she had 1,300 followers; now that her following has almost doubled, she's considering raising her prices. Other girls told me they charge around $3 for every 1,000 followers, or have a sliding scale depending on how much they like the brand's products.
Matthew Weisberger, the owner of Icewise, which sells trendy sunglasses, phone cases, and backpacks, says that working with teens on Instagram ''was like striking gold from an advertising standpoint.'' He recently shifted away from working with Instagram celebrities in favor of teens with fewer followers: ''The people I was using before were like, 'Pay us $150 and we'll post,' 'Buy these sunglasses from Icewise.' These girls are excited to create this entire meme that focuses around your product for just, like, $20, and they do it way better.''
And because teens tend to rely on recommendations from friends over celebrities, peer-to-peer advertising is remarkably effective. ''If you see an ad for clothing on TV or in a magazine, you know it's an ad, but on Instagram these profiles are just their personal profiles most of the time,'' says Doux Lashes' Oh. ''When people post a picture of them doing something in the day and just tagging their outfits, it doesn't look like it's meant to be an ad. It looks like they're sharing what they use and do during their regular lives, so it makes it seem more personal'--even though they may be getting paid.''
Benefits like this are enough to make Weisberger look past the challenges of working with kids. ''They'll take a long time to respond,'' he says, ''or be like, 'Omg I forgot I had camp for a week and I forgot we had an ad.' But if you have to wait for a week for a post that gets 30,000 likes and only cost $10, it's worth it.''
And some teens are taking the job more seriously. A few told me they'd set up email accounts to seem more official; others have even created their own media kits from templates they've found online.
A group of 14-year-old girls who asked not to be named even set up their own fake agency, complete with a dedicated logo and ''business'' email account, to negotiate better brand deals. ''I think it makes people take us more seriously,'' one of them said. ''People don't think, 'Oh, it's just a 14-year-old sitting behind a laptop.'''
Others say that their work with brands has taught them a range of new skills, including photo editing, sales, marketing, budgeting, navigating workflows, and juggling inbound and outbound requests. The Instagram hustle prompted Leigh, a 14-year-old in Virginia who just finished eighth grade, to download Gmail onto her phone for the first time and spend hours cold-approaching businesses for brand deals.
''Some teens don't know they have this potential, and they don't know they could be making a profit off this,'' she says, adding that she finally understands why her parents, who are both entrepreneurs, are ''always going over emails.''
Payment for services is always received via PayPal, where kids say it's easy to store money without scrutiny from their parents. ''A lot of people now do make money online and we don't want to have to tell our parents, 'Hi, we're making money online talking to strangers,''' says Alexa, a 15-year-old in New York. She says that PayPal sometimes requires a credit card to set up, but that it's easy to spoof using a $5 prepaid Visa from a drugstore.
When Ella, the Florida 13-year-old, was first approached by a brand via Instagram direct message, her mom, Mia, was suspicious. ''I'm from a different generation,'' Mia says. But after a discussion, ''I told her things just need to go through me and she was fine with that. A lot of parents try to friend their kids, try to follow them. The reality is they can create 15 other accounts you don't know about.''
But still, in an emerging gray market with no regulation and few parents to keep an eye out, scams abound. Earlier this summer, several former brand ambassadors for SoAestheticShop, which sells candy-colored streetwear at allowance-friendly prices, took to social media to allege that the brand had refused to pay them, then harassed them or blocked them on social media when they sought payment. Representatives for the company declined to comment.
Overall, however, most teens said they were thrilled to be advertising on social media. ''It's easier to grow on Instagram than it is to get a raise at a job,'' says Angie, a 17-year-old from Montana who says she has made $1,500 since she started posting sponsored content in June. ''You manage yourself.''
Deanna, a 16-year-old in California, says that monetizing her Instagram allowed her to make extra cash while she focused on college applications this summer. She plans to put the money toward textbooks once she gets in.
''I know a lot of people think that social media is a cop-out, but I think it's a totally valid way to make extra money on what's trending right now,'' she says. ''Trends come and go. There's honestly no reason why we can't monetize what's popular and what people are interested in.''
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.
Taylor Lorenz is a staff writer at
The Atlantic, where she covers technology.
ANALYSIS: let's stop illustrating the mess that is the EU, and start asking who is really running Brexit. '' The Slog.
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 12:59
I doubt if the UK press has covered this, but Emmanuel Macron the ''centrist'' neoliberal banker is about to introduce automatic withdrawal of funds from citizens' bank accounts for tax payments in France. Not only is he facing huge opposition to this obvious next bale-in-to-rape step, last Sunday the tabloid Aujourd'hui published leaked documents showing that software trials of the new shovel-in-your-account have revealed an unholy mess. Emmanuel is in a hurry to push this stage of Macronisation through because (a) he is under pressure from Berlin and Frankfurt to do it and (b) summer tax receipts for this year are well below target.
Europe is in deep doo-doo, but the UK Government ''negotiating'' Brexit seems not to care. The Slog asks why this is.
¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤
The latest Italian numbers (and the clear bond spikes that reflect the gravity of the situation there) are clear for anyone to see and nobody to deny. One day there is EC spin about Rome's promises to 'respect the budgetary rules from Brussels', and the next we see more details of overdue plans to expand the economy. It's hard to think of a better reason for such a course of action than the news that Italy's economy stalled over the last few months; but the monetarist idiots in Frankfurt will have their way'....or in this case, not.
It's almost three weeks now since I posted to predict rising bond yields in Italy. That has duly come to pass '' as millions of others knew just as well as I that it would. Five days ago, I blogged to say that the now 'inevitable' watered-down Brexit will ensure we 'remain overdependent on trade with an EU that has insoluble currency, fiscal, migration and economic problems'. And yesterday, I wrote yet another piece pointing out:
Shortly after the referendum on EU membership, I posted this piece in October 2016. May followed every word to the letter'....but grossly underestimated the stubbornness of the EC and the disgust of the British People. Even before then, on the day after the referendum, this was The Slog's headline:
A fortnight later, I led with this headline:
Enough, already. Theresa Mayniac is many things, but she is a cunning manipulator and far from stupid. Like most politicians, she grossly overestimates her abilities. She's emotionally unintelligent perhaps, but a reasonable chess-player.
Yet she is now in a check-mate. Committed to a dead formula nobody in the UK or Brussels wants, dependent on DUP support and facing rebellion from the BoJo Moggies, she nevertheless sees the obvious situation of an EU close to collapse. She could become a hero overnight by walking away from Barnier's busted bluff. She could reposition herself as the true soul of sovereign Brexit, force Brussels to face reality, and revel in the sight of the Junckernauts frozen in panic. There would be intervention from the Big EU beasts within days. And her position would be assured, because while the Brexit 'rebels' just might bring her down, there's no way the Remainer Tories would.
But she isn't going to do it. And it's time we all analysed the reasons why much more closely.
'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--''
Consider some parallels.
Theresa May jumps when any sensitive electoral issue comes to the fore. 86 Windrush immigrants get deported (why is still far from proven) but within days they are promised compensation. Clearly, she'll do and say anything to stay in power. But 3.65 million 1950s born UK women campaign for seven years and more'....and neither she nor her predecessors are willing to budge an inch. Why?
Grenfell Tower burns to the ground with a shocking loss of life. Ignoring the fact that 30% of residents were illegally subletting in the tower (May gives them an immediate amnesty) most survivors are rehoused remarkably quickly (despite the fact that none of the claimant numbers make sense) and a full public enquiry is set up within weeks. Again, she is fearful of the predictable backlash from Labour and bleeds all over the carpet about how saddened she is by the (very real) tragedy. But when faced with the chance to turn a populist referendum result into political advantage, she allows an inexplicable delay in triggering Article 50 and almost a full year to pass before negotiations with Brussels begin. Two problematic opportunities, but she treats them entirely differently. Why?
Having missed the opportunity to go balls-out for Brexit and wipe the floor with the Opposition, the Prime Minister has no problem with doing a hugely expensive (and grubby) deal with the DUP which is immediately seized upon by Brussels and the border issue becomes an unlikely deal-breaker. Clearly, there's nothing wrong with Sister Theresa's political instincts (they are utterly base) but she's more than happy to have her hands further tied during the Brexit process. Reversing her stance on SPA reforms and screwing the best deal possible out of a weak Brussels would have annihilated the challenge from Coybynite Labour. But she chose to look the obvious gift-horse in the eye. Why?
Not being a Leftist Remainoid '' that is, existentially mad '' The Mayniac knows perfectly well that she could play up the EU's myriad problems, engage the now clear UK majority in favour of getting on with Brexit, frighten the Tory Remaindeer into silence, and have a clear run at an isolated (and probably a breakaway suffering) FootLabour2 in 2022. Instead, she comes up with the Chequers Formula to unite the entire spectrum of Brexit opinion against her. She loves power, and yet she demands obedience to an idea that causes the resignation of powerful enemies who directly threaten that power. Why?
In 2015, the then popular Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is very close to having Brussels over a barrel. ClubMed bonds are spiking all over the place, and his media-savvy finance minister Yanis Varoufakis has presented a series of requests for debt forgiveness that leave most EU leaders impressed. Varoufakis himself is convinced he has a deal that Muscovichi and Hollande will buy into. But he arrives at the crunch meeting to be surprised by the presence of former Goldman Sachs sociopath Mario Draghi, head of the European Bank. Dismissively rude throughout the session, Draghi tells the Greek to fold or be crushed.
Varoufakis leaves the conference and rings Tsipras. They're bluffing, he says. We can call their bluff. Tsipras rejects this blindingly obvious counsel. Why?
It seems to me quite clear that these power-lovers' fear of other forces is greater than their love of power.
Theresa May doesn't fear Boris Johnson, because she knows that, in the final analysis, he too bows to the forces of ultimate power. Equally, she knows that Jacob Rees-Mogg is also a member of the bourse financialisers.
But she '' like Tsipras '' fears the influence of the CIA, MI5, Texan and Saudi oil barons, the Pentagon, bourses and NATO. Via her experience at the Home Office and her husband in the markets, Theresa May understands precisely who runs the World. She won't volte face on the SPA embezzlement, because that would give the wrong signal to the (C)lites.
'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--''
Viktor Orban of Hungary has been under similar pressure for several years. But he has stuck to his guns and given the polite FOAD response to the European Commission. And little by little, he has eased the malign George Soros influence out of his country. He has chosen to stick two fingers up to the Alt State (C)lites of NATO, the Pentagon, global central banking, the financial markets, the energy power-brokers, the US State Department, Berlin migration lunacy and the ECB because first, he has more options than most; and second, he is less important than most.
By contrast, Greece is central to NATO North African strategy, and had the potential to embarrass US, German and French banks. And Great Britain is a vital ally in the fight to unite Europe against the developing Third Worlds of Russia, China and South America. The last thing the State-Pentagon-CIA-NATO axis wants is a threat to Dollar hegemony.
Brexit doesn't mean Brexit at all. Brexit means play ball with the creators of the European Union, the financialisation of global capitalism and the Generals behind neocon US foreign policy'....or else.
Brexit '' as Kate Hoey so presciently pointed out in 2016 '' is about The People versus The Establishment. It is about the Citizen versus Big State. It is about State accountability to the Electorate versus hidden control by speculators, diplomats, soldiers and ideologues. It is about the individual's desire to be left alone by the snoopers, the tax collectors and the fanatics.
That's why hegemonists based in Washington, Dallas, Tehran, Saudi Arabia, Tel Aviv, Berlin, Paris, Brussels, mosques, the socialist movements, the bourses and the neoliberal tendency legislators are all against it.
Theresa May isn't following her instincts, she is doing as she's told'.....not what We The People want her to do.
Ultimately, Brexit about Big versus Small. And that's why I continue to have this visual at The Slog's home page:
If we lose this fight, then all is lost. And that amounts to far more than Brexit.
Internet Supression! '' STEVE PIECZENIK TALKS
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 07:21
The Rise of Internet Unicorn Suppression of Unpalatable Narratives!
The recent tsunami of evictions and fines from Google, Apple, Facebook and other internet foes forces those of us who have been trained in intelligence and national security to ask a basic questions.How far will we allow these quasi-public/private companies to continue to evict and punish users who have expressed their particular opinion about anything and everything?
In the early 1970's, I was trained at Harvard in psychiatry and at MIT in political science. I had the privilege of being tutored by DARPA/CIA at the John McCone Center at MIT. Specifics included the manipulation of the internet and social media.
None of the so-called vainglorious faux-founders [Brin, Gates, Zuckerberg, Bezos] of either Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Apple, Amazon can claim that they alone had discovered the essential ingredients that made the internet a worldwide platform for discourse.
There was no one essential individual in a history of internet/computer development that goes back to the code-busters of WWII in some esoteric U.S. Army SIGNINT counterintelligence project entitled, ''The Venona Project''. In the early 1940's this highly secret US Army project uncovered both the shenanigans of the NKVD and the UK Cambridge Five. From those early days of Signal Intelligence, the computer's destiny was formulated by a cadre of silent war heroes whom FDR, Truman, and Ike never acknowledged.
In simple heuristic terms, the internet, the computer, and the coding algorithms, belong to no one, private or public, entity. The internet is a factotum of universal discourse with no proprietary. It belongs to no one. Yet, it belongs to everyone.
The fact that billionaires and unicorns have evolved from the internet's existence is just a lucrative sideshow. No one person or corporation could have developed any products or constructs without the interventions of the USG, France, Russia, Estonia,Bulgaria, EU, et.al.
The internet is an orphan product which seeks no ownership other than granting an unbiased venue, like a highway made of tar or concrete. The present day internet is a highway of communication composed of zeroes and ones.
Humans have revealed their true nature by bastardizing this neutral venue and converted it into a platform for judgement, reprisal, and worst of all: banishment from any legitimate discourse. Whatever realities might or might not occur outside of the binary world of the internet has no merit other than the discourse attached to a particular phenomenon.
If one does or does not believe that 9/11 was a classical 'false flag', then so be it. Yet, one must be conversant with the historical nature of 'false flags' before any rational comment can or should be made. The Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, a distinguished member of the several Republican Administration in which he and I had worked in, rebutted me on TV/Radio/Internet, as follows: (September 12, 2001) ''If anyone thinks that 9/11 was a ''Republican False Flag'', then that person [me] should describe Pearl Harbor as a ''Democratic False Flag''!BINGO!
The internet is used for any type of activities'--moral, immoral, amoral-which has no bearing on the venues of communication'-- Google, Twitter, Blogs, You Tube. Similarly, 'false flags' were initiated by Obama's administration for whatever nefarious purposes.
One doesn't have to be a board trained psychiatrist to understand the 'false flag' of Sandy Hook School. The presumed perpetrator murdered 20 children and six adults yet he was autistic??! If one has the time to peruse the 15,000 FBI pages of nonsensical verbiage, it turns out the fictional ''Lanza'' was not only 'high functioning autistic person' but he was also diagnosed as ''Schizophrenic'', ''Obsessive-Compulsive'', ''Anxiety ridden accompanied with severe bouts of ''Depression'' and more nonsensical non-existent diagnoses.
Our Presidents and their acolytes have used the internet to create fictional narratives of non-existent enemies and false gun massacres.
I have taught 'false flags' strategies for decades at the Industrial College / Fr. McNair/Washington DC for years. Citizens must understand the full spectrum of psyops/manipulation utilized in any 'false flag'. Most reporters, lawyers, and judges have no idea about anything related to psyops or false flags. Rather they tend to make ex-cathedra statements that border on absurd, irrational pronouncements that advance nothing more than their own careers, far from any real basis of reality.
Today, Alex Jones and Owen Shroyer are incriminated for 'spreading conspiracy theories' and then tried by the self-appointed hanging judges. The judges must be judged by those who are professional 'false flag' creators. The internet is simply a venue of communications belonging to no one group or person. Yet our tax dollars support every facet of Google, Facebook, Apple, and many many other so-called unicorns.
The CIA learned decades ago to invest in start-ups much as I had done in the early years of the1990's in Northern Virginia. Both they and I have prospered accordingly because of the risks we were willing to take and the sweat equity we collectively contributed to these hi-tech start-ups before they became 'unicorns'.
As entertaining and enlightening as Infowars has become, it is above all else a MAJOR TEST OF AMERICA'S TOLERANCE for dissension. The show was purposely created to determine at which point political outrage would force it to go off the air, once and for all.
It turned out that the American public could not tolerate opposing arguments, dissension, and highly-contrived truisms. In the world of psychological warfare, I had predicted that our citizens had to have a false sense of control over their own destiny. This collective public narcissism composed of our mainstream media and the self-anointed intellectuals would self ''destruct in a binary world of irrelevancy.
Imagine now the new, more terrifying world of QUANTUM ENCRYPTION!
This time around all the contrived narratives will be quantified exponentially! We are all merely experimental venues for the greater good of the Republic existing in an increasing highly manipulated virtual reality. Enjoy while you can!
''The believability of virtual reality is often superior to the non-realness of reality.''
Vineet Raj Kapour [author, game designer].
Bangladesh student protests: Mobile internet shut down across country as police try to quell demonstrations - Firstpost
Tue, 04 Sep 2018 03:58
Dhaka: Bangladesh authorities have shut down mobile internet across swathes of the country, officials and local media said on Sunday, as the authorities try to quell massive student protests that have spiralled into violence.
For the last week students have brought parts of the capital Dhaka to a standstill with a protest against poor road safety after two teenagers were killed by a speeding bus.
On Saturday, the protests took a violent turn in Dhaka's Jigatala neighborhood with more than 100 people injured.
Witnesses said police fired rubber bullets and tear gas at demonstrators and that alleged pro-government activists attacked youngsters, including some of those rushing to nearby hospitals for treatment.
Bangladeshi students block a road during a protest, as their guardians stand nearby holding umbrellas, in Dhaka. AP
The country's highest circulated newspaper Prothom Alo said 3G and 4G internet services have been shut down for 24 hours since late Saturday, shortly after the violence broke out.
Social media has been filled with comments from Bangladeshis unable to access the internet via their phones, although wireless and wired networks appear to be unhindered.
Jahirul Haq, chairman of the Bangladesh Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (BTRC), told AFP they received a "decision" from the government. But he did not clarify what was the government order was. He said he would comment further on the situation later Sunday.
A senior telecoms official who asked for anonymity said: "The BTRC has slowed down the internet at the order of the government."
The move may be an attempt to try and limit the ability of students to mobilise or spread growing online outrage over how the government has handled the protests, hours after police and unidentified men wielding sticks and stones clashed with students.
Images and photos of the attacks on students allegedly by the ruling party activists have flooded the social media, prompting renewed outrage.
Police denied they fired rubber bullets or tear gas at the protesters. However hospital staff said dozens of people had been injured, some seriously, sporting injuries consistent with rubber bullets.
The ruling Awami League party has also denied allegations its cadres beat students up.
Bangladesh's transport sector is widely seen as corrupt, unregulated and dangerous, and as news of the teenagers' deaths spread rapidly on social media they became a catalyst for an outpouring of anger against the government.
The government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has ruled Bangladesh since 2009, but in recent months it has been shaken by mass protests demanding an end to a decades-old system of discriminatory civil service recruitment.
Several powerful ministers have pleaded with students to return to their classes, amid worries the unprecedented teen outrage could turn into widespread anti-government protests ahead of general elections due later this year.
But their pleas have had little effect.
Microwave Weapons May Have Been Used Against U.S. Embassy Officials in Havana
Mon, 03 Sep 2018 03:28
Politics US News Adalberto Roque / AFP / Getty Images US Marines stand outside the Embassy of the United State of America in Havana, on February 21, 2018. (Adalberto Roque / AFP / Getty Images)
The State Department is now entertaining the idea that microwave attacks were behind the mysterious illnesses that plagued diplomats working in the U.S. embassy in Havana, Cuba.
Beginning in late 2016, more than three dozen U.S. diplomats and family members living in Cuba and China reported puzzling brain ailments such as dizziness, headaches and blurry vision. Some diplomats described moments where they heard loud ringing and buzzing sounds.
For months, the State Department considered the mysterious incidents to possibly be the the result of ''sonic attacks.''
Not only have federal investigators yet to determine what devices were used against American officials, but they are still unaware who was behind them.
However, in a chilling new development, doctors and scientists involved the investigation now consider microwave attacks to be main suspect.
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''Everybody was relatively skeptical at first,,'' Dr. Douglas Smith, the lead author of a study into the victims' ailments, said to the New York Times. ''[But] everyone now agrees there's something there.''
Smith is increasingly positive that the diplomats sustained brain injuries.
Initially, experts believed the diplomats' description of ringing, buzzing and other loud noises were symptoms of a sonic attack.
A secretive organization of top scientists that help the federal government assess threats, referred to as ''Jason,'' are considering several possible explanations '-- one of them now being microwaves.
Do you think Cuba is responsible for the attacks?There are personal accounts that support a microwave attack theory. The spouse of one embassy staffer, after hearing the strange sounds, looked outsider her home and reportedly saw a van speeding away. A small van could potentially carry a dish antenna, beaming microwaves at a target.
Involved in the developing investigation is Allan Frey, an American scientist who determined in 1960 that microwaves can deceive the brain into thinking it hears ordinary sounds. This discovery lead to what is now known as the ''Frey effect.''
The 83-year-old scientist told the Times that he suspects Cubans, possibly aligned with Russia, orchestrated microwave attacks in order to scuttle growing relations between the Washington, D.C., and Havana.
''It's a possibility,'' Frey stated. ''In dictatorships, you often have factions that think nothing of going against the general policy if it suits their needs. I think that's a perfectly viable explanation.''
While the Cuban government has denied any involvement with the attacks, relations between the two countries have undoubtedly been affected.
RELATED: Dick Morris: Russia and China are Causing Climate Change, Not the US
The Trump administration '-- after telling Cuba it has a responsibility to protect American officials residing in its country '-- ordered about half its diplomatic personnel back in September 2017.
Currently, the U.S. embassy sits completely abandoned.
A version of this article appeared on The Daily Caller News Foundation website. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.
'Gross Betrayal of Democracy' '' Theresa May Rejects Second Brexit Referendum
Mon, 03 Sep 2018 03:27
British Prime Minister Theresa May has rejected repeated calls for a second referendum on Britain's relationship with the European Union, noting to do so would betray the trust of the millions of people who already voted on the matter in 2016.The comments come in an article for the Sunday Telegraph newspaper, where the Prime Minister also confirms she is dedicated to her Chequers plan for a compromising soft Brexit.
Writing in the paper recently used by former cabinet colleague and political rival Boris Johnson to articulate his frustrations with the Prime Minister's Brexit plans, May said: ''In the Summer of 2016, millions came out to have their say.
''In many cases for the first time in decades, they trusted that their vote would count; that after years of feeling ignored by politics, their voices would be heard. To ask the question all over again would be a gross betrayal of our democracy '' and a betrayal of that trust.''
Farage Denounces Campaign for Second EU Referendum: 'It's Not the People's Vote, It's the George Soros Vote' https://t.co/vtlhBKjGF8
'-- Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) August 26, 2018
The rejection of Britain having a second referendum on its EU membership will likely further frustrate the campaigning of several high-profile political actors, including former prime minister Tony Blair.
The Iraq war architect has called for a second vote, and even failed to rule out a third if the British public voted against the EU again.
In July, Blair's former 'Prince of Darkness' Peter Mandelson went so far to predict that Theresa May would be forced into a second referendum.
Left-leaning Conservative Members of Parliament such as Justine Greening '-- who also believes Britain should stay in the EU '-- have also called for a second vote.
Blair's Spin-Doctor Mandelson: May Has 'Crossed the Rubicon', Will Offer Second Brexit Referendum https://t.co/MEdU1PeDlp
'-- Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) July 30, 2018
In acknowledging the damage to the voting public's faith in democracy that could be caused by ignoring the first referendum and calling a second, PM May is closer to ultra-europhile Tory MP Ken Clarke and Labour frontbencher Barry Gardiner.
Both parliamentarians '-- like May herself '-- campaigned for Britain to remain in the European Union, but after the Brexit referendum in 2016 conceded that the vote was legitimate.
Despite May's objection to a second vote, it is less clear that the Brexit she is working for will deliver on the spirit of the original Brexit referendum voted on by the British people.
While the government-funded pro-Remain leaflet that was posted to every house in the United Kingdom before the vote made it clear that leaving the EU would also mean a much-reduced involvement in the Single Market and its Free Movement regime, May has fought to stop that in her compromise-heavy, Brexit-lite Chequers deal.
Remainer Tories Call For Second Referendum: May's 'Fudge' Is 'Worst of Both Worlds' https://t.co/scha4bQzpr
'-- Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) July 16, 2018
The so-called Chequers agreement has been routinely criticised by pro-Brexit politicians who have agitated for a departure from the bloc more obviously like the one the British people were routinely promised '-- or warned '-- they would be getting prior to the referendum.
One such figure has been Boris Johnson, who quit the Cabinet over May's plan, and has called on the government to ''chuck Chequers''.
Making clear she would stick to her plan that many, including Brexit campaign leader Nigel Farage, have dismissed as a 'Brexit in Name Only', May wrote: ''I will not be pushed into accepting compromises on the Chequers proposals that are not in our national interest.''
Oliver JJ Lane is the editor of Breitbart London '-- Follow him on Twitter and Facebook
There will be no second referendum on Brexit '' it would be a gross betrayal of our democracy
Mon, 03 Sep 2018 03:19
We must respond to the wider call for change that was at the heart of the Brexit vote Credit: Leon Neal/Getty Images Europe T here will be no compromises on Chequers that are not in our national interest
The coming months will be critical in shaping the future of our country and I am clear about my mission. This government will fulfil the democratic decision of the British people by ensuring that the UK leaves the European Union on 29th March next year '' and that as we do so, we build a stronger, more meritocratic Britain that is fit for the future.
At Chequers in July, the government came together around a set of proposals that could break the deadlock on the negotiations and bring a fresh dynamic to the talks. And there are signs over the Summer that this has happened, with real progress in the negotiations.
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Theresa May Rejects Second EU Referendum '' NewsWars
Mon, 03 Sep 2018 03:19
British Prime Minister Theresa May has rejected calls for a second referendum on Britain's ties to the European Union, saying to do so would betray the trust of millions of citizens who voted in 2016.
''In many cases for the first time in decades, they trusted that their vote would count; that after years of feeling ignored by politics, their voices would be heard,'' May wrote in the Sunday Telegraph Saturday.
''To ask the question all over again would be a gross betrayal of our democracy '' and a betrayal of that trust.''
''This government will fulfill the democratic decision of the British people by ensuring that the UK leaves the European Union on 29th March next year '' and that as we do so, we build a stronger, more meritocratic Britain that is fit for the future,'' she added.
Establishment forces like former Prime Minister Tony Blair and the Soros-backed ''Best for Britain'' campaign will likely be frustrated by May's remarks, as they've lobbied hard for Britain to remain in the EU.
Brexit architect Nigel Farage recently rejoined the campaign trail earlier this month to fight back against a second referendum, calling May's path toward a soft Brexit a ''cowardly sell-out.''
I pledge my absolute and total support to Leave Means Leave and will go back on the road to campaign.
Over the last few months, scores of people have stopped me in the street to ask: ''When are you coming back?''
Well now you have your answer: I'm back. https://t.co/7gTH9uNVuC
'-- Nigel Farage (@Nigel_Farage) August 17, 2018
EU 'strongly opposed' to May Brexit plan
Mon, 03 Sep 2018 02:58
Image copyright EPA The EU's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier has said he is "strongly" opposed to key parts of Theresa May's proposals for a future trade deal.
This morning the prime minister said she would not compromise on the UK government's Chequers plan.
But Mr Barnier said plans for a "common rulebook" for goods but not services were not in the EU's interests.
"Our own ecosystem has grown over decades," he said. "You can not play with it by picking pieces."
While he has previously expressed criticism about Mrs May's Chequers plan, sources close to Mr Barnier told the BBC he has not been this explicit before.
In response, the UK government insisted its plans were "precise and pragmatic" and would work for the UK and the EU.
The negotiations between the UK and the EU have an informal October deadline, but Mr Barnier said this could be extended to mid-November.
In an interview with the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Mr Barnier said Mrs May's plans "would be the end of the single market and the European project".
"The British have a choice," he said.
"They could stay in the single market, like Norway, which is also not a member of the EU - but they would then have to take over all the associated rules and contributions to European solidarity. It is your choice.
"But if we let the British pick the raisins out of our rules, that would have serious consequences.
"Then all sorts of other third countries could insist that we offer them the same benefits."
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Your guide to Brexit jargonHe said another problem was that many goods now come with services attached - meaning they were hard to separate in a trade deal.
"We have a coherent market for goods, services, capital and people - our own ecosystem that has grown over decades," he said.
"You can not play with it by picking pieces. There is another reason why I strongly oppose the British proposal.
"There are services in every product. In your mobile phone, for example, it is 20 to 40 percent of the total value."
Mr Barnier's comments were published on the same day Mrs May wrote in the Sunday Telegraph that she was "confident" a "good deal" could be reached.
But she said it was right for the government to prepare for a no-deal scenario - even though this would create "real challenges for both the UK and the EU" in some sectors.
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt has warned a no-deal Brexit would be a "big mistake for Europe", although Britain "would survive and prosper".
Various business groups have warned about the possible impact on the UK of no-deal Brexit.
The World Trade Organization - under whose rules the EU and UK would trade if no deal was agreed - said it "would not be end of the world... but it's not going to be a walk in the park".
Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media caption Theresa May speaks after 12-hour cabinet meeting at Chequers in JulyResponding to Mr Barnier's remarks, a government spokeswoman said: "We are confident that we have put forward a proposal that is precise, pragmatic and that will work for the UK and the EU.
"This proposal achieves a new balance of rights and obligations that fulfils our joint ambition to establish a deep and special partnership once the UK has left the EU while preserving the constitutional integrity of the UK. There is no other proposal that does that.
"Our negotiating teams have upped the intensity, and we continue to move at pace to reach - as Mr Barnier says - an ambitious partnership, which will work in the mutual interests of citizens and businesses in the UK and in the EU."
The so-called Chequers plan was agreed at the prime minister's country residence in July. It led to the resignations of Brexit Secretary David Davis and Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson.
Mr Barnier has previously criticised the proposals, ruling out allowing the UK to collect customs duties on behalf of the EU.
The UK is due to leave the EU on 29 March but has yet to agree how its final relationship with the bloc will work.
Democrats Shut Down Obama, Refuse Campaign Help Ahead of Midterms
Mon, 03 Sep 2018 02:31
Former President Barack Obama is preparing to stump for various Democrats as midterm elections near '-- while some members of the party running for re-election tell him to keep his distance.
Democratic Sens. Jon Tester of Montana and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota worry a surrogate like Obama could distract from focusing on their Republican opponents.
Obama himself is keeping a wide berth from endorsing national campaigns in states President Donald Trump won in 2016.
''We're not going to use any surrogates. Surrogates are fine but we don't need them,'' Tester told The Hill on Saturday.
Heitkamp was even more curt, saying ''nope, no'' to questions about the possibility of Obama visiting North Dakota. ''He threatened to campaign against me once so I don't think he's coming out there,'' she said.
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Obama endorsed Richard Cordray's campaign for governor in Ohio, for instance, but he has not yet endorsed Sen. Sherrod Brown's re-election campaign.
Brown frequently paints himself as a Trump opponent '-- but a senator who will nonetheless work with the president on certain issues.
Meanwhile, the senator's Republican opponent, Rep. Jim Renacci, is trying to depict Brown as a bitter political partisan obstructionist who is out of step for a state that supported Trump in the 2016 election.
Obama gave Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey similar treatment.
Do you think these Democrats have the right idea?The former president announced his support for two Keystone State House candidates, Madeleine Dean and Susan Wild, but left Casey off his list.
One Democratic strategist told reporters that the list of endorsements is a strategy designed to allow Trump to create foils.
''Both of those senators are doing well their respective states and they don't exactly need Obama's seal of approval. In fact, it might do more harm than good,'' the strategist said. ''Obama is still popular with certain folks in those states but he's not exactly popular with some others.''
Obama will likely be competing directly with his successor.
Trump is preparing to campaign in seven states in September for Republican candidates.
RELATED: Expert Says Flint Didn't Experience a Crisis, Clinton and Media 'Literally' Ignored Data
He's planning trips to Kentucky, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, North Dakota, South Dakota and Tennessee, according to recent reports.
''He's going to be busy,'' one White House official told reporters, predicting that Trump over the next few months ''will be the most aggressive campaigner in modern presidential history.''
A version of this article appeared on The Daily Caller News Foundation website. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.
TASS: Russian Politics & Diplomacy - Upper house speaker: united international front needed to defeat terrorism
Mon, 03 Sep 2018 02:12
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Speaker of Russia's Federation Council Valentina Matviyenko (C) Press service of Russia's Federation Council
MOSCOW, September 3. /TASS/. The global community needs to shape a common and integral system of counter-terrorism measures presenting a united international front against it, Speaker of Russia's Federation Council (upper house of parliament) Valentina Matviyenko said in a statement on the occasion of the Day of Solidarity in the Fight Against Terrorism marked in Russia on Monday.
"The scope of this transnational phenomenon dictates to the world community the need to take the most effective countermeasures, building a common and integral counteraction system," she noted. According to Matviyenko, terrorist attacks entail economic and political losses, and that likewise "exerts unprecedented psychological pressure on people."
"It is necessary to realize that only by presenting a single counterterrorism front, building a constructive dialogue between politicians, religious leaders and representatives of civil society, actively involving the media and social movements, will we be able to win a confident and final victory over this global evil," Matviyenko stressed.
She noted that "in recent years, thanks to countries' consolidated efforts, the rate of terrorism-related crime has been declining steadily, and the number of terrorist attacks has decreased." Russia "is doing everything it can to shield humanity from this disaster, to eradicate terrorism ideology as such," the speaker concluded.
Day of Solidarity in the Fight Against Terrorism was established in accordance with the Federal Law "On Days of Military Glory (Victorious Days) of Russia" last amended on July 21, 2005. This memorable date is timed to the tragic events that took place in Beslan (Russia's North Ossetia-Alania Region) on September 1-3, 2004, known as the Beslan school siege. The act of terrorism, unprecedented in its cruelty, left more than 300 people dead, most of them women and children. On that day, victims of terror attacks and law enforcement officers who were killed in the line of duty are remembered throughout the country.
In other media
JustOneMinute: The Ohr-Steele Breakfast Struck A Nerve
Mon, 03 Sep 2018 01:13
The report that retired MI-6 dirt-dogger Steele had briefed senior FBI veteran Ohr about the infamous Steel dossier at a July 30 meeting has struck a nerve.
The NY Times has a river of leaks from the Ohr/FBI/Clinton/Comey side explaining their long time relationship. Since both were involved with probing the Russian mob, large parts of the story ring true.
However! Folks with a long memory (or for those to whom it seems like a long time) this theme of 'controversial leaks followed by exculpatory leaks' is a replay of the May 16, 2018 Times story about the genesis of "Crossfire Hurricane". Back then, when the controversy was whether the Steele dossier had fueled the Carter Page FISA warrant, we were assured that "Crossfire Hurricane" had been launched on July 31 in response to the news that George Papadopoulos had been tipped about Russian possession of emails. We can feel the drama in the lead:
WASHINGTON '-- Within hours of opening an investigation into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia in the summer of 2016, the F.B.I. dispatched a pair of agents to London on a mission so secretive that all but a handful of officials were kept in the dark.
Their assignment, which has not been previously reported, was to meet the Australian ambassador, who had evidence that one of Donald J. Trump's advisers knew in advance about Russian election meddling. After tense deliberations between Washington and Canberra, top Australian officials broke with diplomatic protocol and allowed the ambassador, Alexander Downer, to sit for an F.B.I. interview to describe his meeting with the campaign adviser, George Papadopoulos.
The agents summarized their highly unusual interview and sent word to Washington on Aug. 2, 2016, two days after the investigation was opened. Their report helped provide the foundation for a case that, a year ago Thursday, became the special counsel investigation. But at the time, a small group of F.B.I. officials knew it by its code name: Crossfire Hurricane.
Deep in the story the dossier appears:
The F.B.I. bureaucracy did agents no favors. In July, a retired British spy named Christopher Steele approached a friend in the F.B.I. overseas and provided reports linking Trump campaign officials to Russia. But the documents meandered around the F.B.I. organizational chart, former officials said. Only in mid-September, congressional investigators say, did the records reach the Crossfire Hurricane team.
Mr. Steele was gathering information about Mr. Trump as a private investigator for Fusion GPS, a firm paid by Democrats. But he was also considered highly credible, having helped agents unravel complicated cases.
Hmm. So now we know that the "friend in the F.B.I. overseas" was Ohr, and that Crossfire Hurricane was launched the day after the dossier was presented. Kind of buried the lede there.
To be fair, there is no way the FBI responded exclusively to the dossier by formally opening an investigation one day later. But asking me to believe it took Ohr several weeks to tip off his colleagues? Please.
I'll settle for believing the FBI already had concerns and the dossier added to them.
FBI Dir. Comey: Member, HSBC Board '' Clinton Foundation and Drug Cartel Money Launderer | Covert Geopolitics
Sun, 02 Sep 2018 22:14
Now, it can be made clear as to why the FBI Director James Comey had been flip-flopping with his statements regarding the Clintons' slew of high crimes, i.e. he has multiple conflicts of interest when it comes to investigating the affairs of the latter and the Deep State, at large.
He is deeply involved in their shady enterprise.
FBI Director Comey was board member of HSBC '' Clinton Foundation & Drug Cartel 'bank of choice'
21st Century Wire says'...
Much has been made recently about the FBI and the Department of Justice letting off favored presidential candidate Hillary Clinton for admittedly mishandling classified information and using her own private email servers to do state business during her time as US Secretary of State. FBI Director James Comey was manning the key choke-point in the decision to not hold Clinton accountable for what so many before her have received convictions for. What many are not aware of is the political and organizational links between Hillary Clinton and James Comey behind the curtain of international high finance.
An argument can be made that FBI Director James Comey has multiple conflicts of interest when it comes to interfacing with the great and the good, and the Clintons in particular. Based on the evidence available to hand '' one could easily flag-up Comey's relationships and past and present involvement with questionable banks, and the Clintons '' as a type of conflict of interest (albeit indirect), if not an accessory to institutional corruption, where Comey's role as a top-level 'fixer' is self-evident '' fixing outcomes for those members of an elite international club of high finance and organized crime. Could this be the case?
Let's investigate'...
Many are unaware that Comey's served on the board of banking giant HSBC ('international drug money clearing house') before parachuting softly into the head of the FBI in 2013. That's only the beginning'...
It appears that James Comey (who is actually a lawyer by trade) also has long history of cases ending favorable to Clintons, including the case of Sandy Berger, a former Clinton Administration aid. During the Berger probe, Comey said publicly that 'we take issues of classified information very seriously', all the while seeming to undermine the scope of the investigation '' presumably to protect the Clintons:
''In 2004, Comey, then serving as a deputy attorney general in the Justice Department, apparently limited the scope of the criminal investigation of Sandy Berger, which left out former Clinton administration officials who may have coordinated with Berger in his removal and destruction of classified records from the National Archives. The documents were relevant to accusations that the Clinton administration was negligent in the build-up to the 9/11 terrorist attack.''
''Curiously, Berger, Lynch and Cheryl Mills all worked as partners in the Washington law firm Hogan & Hartson, which prepared tax returns for the Clintons and did patent work for a software firm that played a role in the private email server Hillary Clinton used when she was secretary of state.''
''Hogan & Hartson in Virginia filed a patent trademark request on May 19, 2004, for Denver-based MX Logic Inc., the computer software firm that developed the email encryption system used to manage Clinton's private email server beginning in July 2013. A tech expert has observed that employees of MX Logic could have had access to all the emails that went through her account.
In 1999, President Bill Clinton nominated [Loretta] Lynch for the first of her two terms as U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, a position she held until she joined Hogan & Hartson in March 2002 to become a partner in the firm's Litigation Practice Group.'' (Source WND)
Many will also be unaware that before Comey was installed by the Obama Administration as FBI Director, he was on the board of Director at HSBC Bank '' a bank implicated in international money laundering, including the laundering of billions on behalf of international drugs and narcotics trafficking cartels.
Forbes also points out where Comey was also at the key choke-point during the case involving dodgy auditor KPMG which followed on by the HSBC criminal case:
''If Comey, and his boss Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez, had made a different decision about KPMG back in 2005, KPMG would not have been around to miss all the illegal acts HSBC and Standard Chartered SCBFF +% were committing on its watch.
Bloomberg reported in 2007 that back in June of 2005, Comey was the man thrust into the position of deciding whether KPMG would live or die for its criminal tax shelter violations.''
So according to the establishment narrative, Comey is the who will ''keep an eye on the banks'' and ''help stamp out corruption,'' while the opposite seems to be happening. Has Comey been put in place to stop corruption, or to enable it? His record certainly warrants some study on this point.
Good qualification to be FBI Director? Not really'...
It seems that our beloved FBI Director is or until very recently was a director and board member of HSBC, which is tightly connected to the Clinton Foundation.
http://www.hsbc.com/news-and-insight/2013/former-us-deputy-attorney-general-joins-hsbc-board''Mr. Comey's appointment will be for an initial three-year term which, subject to re-election by shareholders, will expire at the conclusion of the 2016 Annual General Meeting.''
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/feb/10/hillary-clinton-foundation-donors-hsbc-swiss-bank''Clinton foundation received up to $81m from clients of controversial HSBC bank''
https://www.clintonfoundation.org/search/node/HSBCIt's like a revolving door of money and special projects that the bank and the CF are involved in.
This is the same HSBC that was accused of laundering drug cartel money, was heavily involved in the LIBOR scandal, and who knows what else, and all the while our esteemed FBI Director James ''she didn't intend it'' Comey was part of the senior leadership.
http://21stcenturywire.com/2016/07/13/fbi-director-comey-board-member-of-clinton-foundation-connected-bank-hsbc/
How money laundering works in real estate - The Washington Post
Sun, 02 Sep 2018 21:16
Former FBI director Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel probing Russian interference in the 2016 election, on Capitol Hill on June 21, 2017. (Andrew Harnik/AP) If Michael Wolff's reporting is to be believed, Stephen K. Bannon's assessment of the most dangerous threat posed by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's investigation is not the one you might have assumed.
''You realize where this is going,'' Bannon reportedly told Wolff. ''This is all about money laundering. Mueller chose Weissmann first and he is a money-laundering guy. Their path to f'--ing Trump goes right through Paul Manafort, Don Jr and Jared Kushner. '... It goes through Deutsche Bank and all the Kushner s'---.''
Two quick explanations. Weissmann refers to Andrew Weissmann. He was one of Mueller's early hires, although not the first, and does have a lot of experience prosecuting financial crimes. Deutsche Bank is a German financial institution that has been an apparent focus of federal prosecutors, although not necessarily by Mueller's team, because of a loan of more than a quarter-billion dollars issued to Kushner's firm a month before the 2016 election.
Bannon's argument is that Mueller's team is focused not on Russian meddling but on unearthing money laundering by Manafort, Donald Trump Jr. and Kushner that can then be used as leverage against Trump. Manafort already faces money-laundering charges from Mueller. Those charges may involve property purchased by Manafort in New York and Virginia through shell companies based in Cyprus.
Real estate, it seems, is central to the charge Bannon made, given the involvement of Kushner and Trump Jr. in the industry. In light of that, we contacted Chris Quick, a retired FBI special agent who specialized in financial crimes and now runs a private investigative firm in South Carolina. He walked us through how money laundering works in the real-estate industry and how others may be implicated in that criminal activity.
''With any money laundering, you're trying to make the illegally gotten money look legitimate,'' Quick said. ''So in the simplest terms, if you have real estate, you're going to buy a piece of property with the illegal funds, hang on to it '-- or have rental income from it, so that rental income is legitimate '-- and eventually when you sell the real estate, you get your proceeds out of it and by all accounts it appears to be a legitimate transaction.'' According to U.S. law, any financial transaction of more than $10,000 involving illegal funds counts as money laundering.
How do you buy the property in the first place without raising eyebrows? One way is to move the money for those properties into shell companies, Quick said.
''What they're hoping is that an investigator or someone who's digging around doesn't investigate or dig around into where that money came from for that'' company, he said. Most real estate agents have a limited ability to look into the legitimacy of a corporate entity, which makes it easier for the person hoping to launder the money to get away with it. Even investigators can have a difficult time tracing money when it comes from countries such as Switzerland (where there are strict bank secrecy laws) or the Cayman Islands.
Money coming in from a foreign corporate entity, though, also can serve as a red flag to investigators. Another is someone who buys a property and then quickly sells it. Others are how the company is formed '-- Delaware corporations add a level of opacity, too '-- or who is listed as being involved in the business.
Manafort, Mueller's team alleges, was involved in laundering money directly. But others who knowingly facilitate money laundering could also be held criminally liable.
''If the bank knew or suspected that something was awry or suspicious with the individual or the company'' seeking to make a real-estate transaction, Quick said, ''they could be held culpable.'' That failure by the bank, he explained, could include ''looking the other way or not scrutinizing the paperwork'' that was offered for the transaction. (It's worth noting that in January 2017, Deutsche Bank settled with U.S. regulators after having helped Russian investors move $10 billion out of Russia.)
The charges faced by a bank involved in a deal to launder money through real estate would be related to conspiracy. Same holds for a real-estate agent who knew that a deal was being made with illegal funds. Someone who knowingly sold a property to someone who planned to use the property to launder those funds could be indicted as a conspirator.
That's the Bannon theory, it seems. Trump Jr. and Kushner could be implicated by Mueller in money laundering either directly or as complicit agents and then leveraged against Trump in some way.
This is not necessarily outside the purview of Mueller's Russia investigation.
In July, Trump was asked by Maggie Haberman of the New York Times whether investigations into his personal finances were a ''breach'' of Mueller's mandate to investigate Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
''I would say yes,'' Trump replied. ''By the way, I would say, I don't '-- I don't '-- I mean, it's possible there's a condo or something, so, you know, I sell a lot of condo units, and somebody from Russia buys a condo, who knows?''
That was a more modest description of his business's overlap with Russian partners than Trump Jr. had offered in 2008.
''In terms of high-end product influx into the U.S., Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets, say in Dubai, and certainly with our project in SoHo and anywhere in New York,'' he said of the Trump Organization's real estate ventures.
''We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.''
Trump Made Millions of Dollars From Drug Money Laundering in Panama: Report
Sun, 02 Sep 2018 21:14
President Donald Trump made tens of millions of dollars in profits by allowing Colombian drug cartels and other groups to launder money through a Trump-affiliated hotel in Panama, according to a new investigation by the organization Global Witness.
In the early 2000s, Trump was having financial difficulties and began selling his high-profile name to real estate developers around the world, the report said. One of these developed Panama's Trump Ocean Club International Hotel and Tower.
The report said the drug cartels purchased hotel units to hide the origins of money earned through drug trafficking and other criminal activity, and Trump is estimated to have earned tens of millions of dollars from the deals.
Some observers are saying it is time for Congress to begin investigating the president's finances and potential conflicts of interest.
''This is inherently a political problem,'' Alex Howard, deputy director of the Sunlight Foundation, told Newsweek. ''The government can investigate a company, even the president's company. The problem here is that it's about the president, and Congress is not holding him accountable for what he has done in this context. They aren't holding hearings about the Trump Organization, and the president himself is not being transparent.''
The Sunlight Foundation has compiled a list of what it claims are Trump's conflicts of interest: It numbers more than 600 for the president and 1,100 for the first family.
Keep up with this story and more by subscribing now
The report said the Panama project is a textbook case of money laundering.
''Investing in luxury properties is a tried and trusted way for criminals to move tainted cash into the legitimate financial system, where they can spend it freely,'' the report noted. ''Once scrubbed clean in this way, vast profits from criminal activities like trafficking people and drugs, organized crime, and terrorism can find their way into the U.S. and elsewhere.''
''In the case of the Trump Ocean Club, accepting easy '' and possibly dirty '' money early on would have been in Trump's interest; a certain volume of pre-construction sales was necessary to secure financing for the project, which stood to net him $75.4 million by the end of 2010.''
Numerous investigations have shown that Trump rarely looks into the people he hires or does business with. Instead, observers say he has a pattern of entering into business deals with people suspected of money laundering and corruption. The business in Panama was an example.
One of the men involved in the scheme was David Eduardo Helmut Murcia Guzmn, who a U.S. court subsequently sentenced to nine years in prison for laundering millions of dollars. Another was Alexandre Henrique Ventura Nogueira, who sold units at the Trump Ocean Club and later admitted that some of the people he did business with were members of the Russian mafia.
Trump family members were allegedly involved in directly managing the Panama project.
The White House did not immediately respond to request for comment.
John Law: the 18th-century Scot who became richer than the king of France
Sun, 02 Sep 2018 21:09
''I am a human being,'' said John Law to his patron, the regent of France. ''I have made great errors.'' Some of his contemporaries would have disputed both propositions. In 1694 Law was imprisoned in the Marshalsea, London's debtors' prison. From there, conjuring money out of nothing-ness, he rose to become the ''richest citizen there has ever been'' (his words). He transformed ''the old France of Cathedrals and Kings'', funded inadequately by forced loans and the sale of offices, into a joint-stock company, and made it prosper. To have achieved all this, some said, Law must be a wizard. As for errors, people were so far from believing he was capable of making any that they fought tooth and nail for the chance to pour their fortunes into Law's ventures.
Twenty years ago James Buchan published Frozen Desire, a book-length essay, sparkling with historical curiosities and mind-bending arguments, on the elusive nature of money. In John Law he returns to the theme, this time framing what he has to say about finance within the story of a remarkable life.
Law was the son of an Edinburgh goldsmith (Buchan, another Scot, likes to quote contemporary remarks on the ''perfidy'', ''insularity'' and ''deep drinking'' of the English). Growing up with gold, Law observed how protean precious metal could be; now material for glittering ornaments, now the symbolic measure of wealth. Money-making fascinated him. Once his father was dead, his mother threw him out, enraged by his persistently staying up late to play ''the Lotterie and other games''.
The word ''adventurer'' in Buchan's sub-title might conjure up the derring-do of an explorer or knight errant, but it is used here in its proper old sense (applicable equally to the gambler and the financier) of one who lays out money in the hope of getting more in return. In Edinburgh John Law was known for his prowess at tennis (an occasion for betting). Moving to London as a young man on the make, he observed, in the coffee houses and in Exchange Alley, how men with insider knowledge and acumen could get rich ''adventuring''.
Daniel Defoe estimated that in 1691 wagers amounting to £200,000 were laid on the outcome of the siege of Limerick. The way aristocrats gambled away their fortunes can seem to modern minds the most alien aspect of 18th-century culture, but Buchan elucidates it, tracing the easy transition from games of chance to speculative business.
At 23, Law killed a man in a duel, and escaped abroad. After a brief period in Paris running a faro game '' an ancien r(C)gime Nathan Detroit '' he fetched up in Genoa. He devised a method, immensely profitable to the insurer (himself) of insuring against a loss on the lottery. He thought big. In 1705 he published a book, Money and Trade Considered: with a Proposal for Supplying the Nation with Money. With Lady Katherine Knowles (whom he loved loyally but never married) he flitted to the Hague and to Turin, becoming ever more celebrated for his success at ''play and other business dealings''. He was looking for a patron audacious and powerful enough to allow him to try out his ''system'', a new way of organising public finance.
In 1715 he met the Duc d'Orl(C)ans, regent to Louis XV, the child-king of France. He was authorised to establish a national bank, and rented a Parisian palace to house it. Within three months of its opening a secretary at the British embassy wrote, ''Law's bank has ruined all the banquiers here.'' Soon he had a hand (and money) in everything going '' the colony in Louisiana, the iron-foundry business, the refitting of the navy, the purchasing of an enormous diamond for the crown jewels. For three years he ran the French economy, earning enough in the process to buy himself 21 country estates. To many it seemed that he ran France.
The only description of Law's appearance that Buchan gives us is from the ''Wanted'' notice when he was a murderer on the run. ''He is a very tall, black [ie dark-haired], lean man'' with ''large pockholes', ''a big high nose'' and a ''broad and loud'' voice. We know that he had engaging manners, but he was as impassive as a gambler must be. Buchan quotes the Comte de Fortia de Piles: ''The banquier must always retain his sang-froid'... He may not lose his head, while the punters are free to do so.'' Law followed that rule.
At the height of the furore in the open-air stock market on the Rue Quincampoix, when Law had released a new share issue, ''One could scarcely fit one's nose between two persons,'' writes a doctor from Lyon, adding: ''It is a mania, a vertigo beyond description.'' In contrast, the person who had ''set in train such transports is the coolest man in the world, who'... speaks only in equations''.
Inscrutable though Law remains, Buchan's book teems with vitality. The narrative is crowded with characters, many of whom are not only actors but sources. Pepys, Defoe and Evelyn in England. In France, Saint-Simon, Voltaire, Montesquieu and Elisabeth Charlotte, the Regent's mother, ''cuboid as a die'' and delightfully smutty-minded and candid.
There is more detail here of Law's financial transactions than any lay reader will want '' this is biography not of the laundry-list school, but of the bank statement one. Here is a representative sentence: ''The Company would lend the King 1.2 billion livres at the rate of 3 per cent per year, deducting the 36 million livres he would pay in annual interest from its 52 million livres rental payment for the General Farmers.'' My eyes glaze over. But there is plenty of compensatory interest for the less mathematically inclined.
Buchan is possessed of a remarkably well-furnished mind. His story is a trem-endous one, spanning two continents, but he finds space as well for a host of minor characters, vividly sketched, and for the indulgence of his own particular pen-chants. He knows that the opera season in Venice began on St Martin's Day (11 November) and that the Venetians, going masked, were seeking to frustrate the informers of their surveillance-obsessed regime. Writing about Law's duel, he declares that Pushkin's The Shot is ''one of the very best of all short stories''. Discussing Law's collection of paintings (damaged in a shipwreck and subsequently lost) he muses on the remarkable ups-and-downs of Guido Reni's reputation. He alludes en passant to Prince Eugene's relief of Turin in 1706 '' ''one of the greatest of all military exploits''. He notes that the uncle of a Dutch widow from whom Law borrowed money had written two wedding songs ''of which Shakespeare would not have been ashamed''.
Law's power, his fortune and the fortune he had made for France all rested on confidence. In December 1719 that confidence began to ebb away and, like a torrent breaching a dam, it created its own channels and went ever faster. There was a run on the bank. Every measure Law tried to contain it '' offering coin for bank notes, devaluing the currency, publicly burning discredited share certificates '' were seen as signs of weakness or loss of nerve. People flooded into Paris, desperate to get rid of their paper money while it still had some value. ''It is astonishing,'' wrote the incorrigible Elisabeth Charlotte, ''that the streets don't run with piss.''
Law declined from potentate to fugitive, slipping out of France incognito. He drifted around Europe. The king of Denmark and the tsar of Russia each offered him employment, but he turned them down and went to ground in Venice, where he savoured the novelty of going about on foot while, back in Paris, Lady Katherine struggled to sell his ten massive, gilded and velvet-upholstered coaches. Meanwhile, all he had done to modernise and restore the French economy was reversed.
Buchan's narrative is compendious to a fault. There are times when his fondness for genealogy leads him down sidetracks that serve at best to bewilder and at worst to bore. But he is also capable of pithiness (the Parlement of Paris, he writes, saw themselves as ''champions of legality against despotism '' liberty did not then exist in France as a political purpose'') and his wit is delightful. He can translate French doggerel into similarly bawdy and metrically perfect English. He leads us surely through the complexities of credit and of trading in futures '' what a Dutch author of 1722 described as ''selling what one does not possess, and buying what one has no intention to accept''.
The Earl of Stanhope, chancellor of the exchequer, told King George I that England had lost, in refusing to pardon and employ John Law, more than the £50m she had borrowed for her recent wars. In 1718 Law was in a position to lend the king of France enough to pay off the entire national debt. His Company of the Indies was, writes Buchan, the only joint-stock company anywhere ''ever to be priced in the market at more than twice the annual product of France''. His rise and fall were both prodigious, and they make a great story.
In this erudite, elegantly-written biography the narrative line sometimes becomes tangled in a mass of extraneous anecdote. But if the book is overcrowded and confusing, it is so only in the way a successful party might be, because it is too full of interesting people, variously disgraceful or brilliant, and of compelling stories overlapped.
Lucy Hughes-Hallett's books include ''The Pike: Gabriele D'Annunzio, Poet, Seducer and Preacher of War'' (HarperCollins)
John Law: A Scottish Adventurer of the Eighteenth CenturyJames BuchanMacLehose Press, 498pp, £30
This article first appeared in the 31 August 2018 issue of the New Statesman, How politics turned toxic
China's 'Silk Road' project runs into debt jam
Sun, 02 Sep 2018 20:49
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China's President Xi Jinping says trade with Belt and Road countries has exceeded $5 trillion (AFP Photo/Yasuyoshi CHIBA)
China's massive and expanding "Belt and Road" trade infrastructure project is running into speed bumps as some countries begin to grumble about being buried under Chinese debt.
First announced in 2013 by President Xi Jinping, the initiative also known as the "new Silk Road" envisions the construction of railways, roads and ports across the globe, with Beijing providing billions of dollars in loans to many countries.
Five years on, Xi has found himself defending his treasured idea as concerns grow that China is setting up debt traps in countries which may lack the means to pay back the Asian giant.
"It is not a China club," Xi said in a speech on Monday to mark the project's anniversary, describing Belt and Road as an "open and inclusive" project.
Xi said China's trade with Belt and Road countries had exceeded $5 trillion, with outward direct investment surpassing $60 billion.
But some are starting to wonder if it is worth the cost.
During a visit to Beijing in August, Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said his country would shelve three China-backed projects, including a $20 billion railway.
The party of Pakistan's new prime minister, Imran Khan, has vowed more transparency amid fears about the country's ability to repay Chinese loans related to the multi-billion-dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.
Meanwhile the exiled leader of the opposition in the Maldives, Mohamed Nasheed, has said China's actions in the Indian Ocean archipelago amounted to a "land grab" and "colonialism", with 80 percent of its debt held by Beijing.
Sri Lanka has already paid a heavy price for being highly indebted to China.
Last year, the island nation had to grant a 99-year lease on a strategic port to Beijing over its inability to repay loans for the $1.4-billion project.
- 'Ambiguous partner' -
"China does not have a very competent international bureaucracy in foreign aid, in expansion of soft power," Anne Stevenson-Yang, co-founder and research director at J Capital Research, told AFP.
"So not surprisingly they're not very good at it, and it brought up political issues like Malaysia that nobody anticipated," she said.
"As the RMB (yuan) becomes weaker, and China is perceived internationally as a more ambiguous partner, it's more likely that the countries will take a more jaundiced eye on these projects."
The huge endeavour brings much-needed infrastructure improvements to developing countries, while giving China destinations to unload its industrial overcapacity and facilities to stock up on raw materials.
But a study by the Center for Global Development, a US think-tank, found "serious concerns" about the sustainability of the sovereign debt in eight countries receiving Silk Road funds.
Those were Pakistan, Djibouti, Maldives, Mongolia, Laos, Montenegro, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan.
The cost of a China-Laos railway project -- $6.7 billion -- represents almost half of the Southeast Asian country's GDP, according to the study.
In Djibouti, the IMF has warned that the Horn of Africa country faces a "high risk of debt distress" as its public debt jumped from 50 percent of GDP in 2014 to 85 percent in 2016.
Africa has long embraced Chinese investment, helping make Beijing the continent's largest trading partner for the past decade.
On Monday, a number of African leaders will gather in Beijing for a summit focused on economic ties which will include talks on the "Belt and Road" programme.
- 'Not a free lunch' -
China bristles at criticism.
At a daily press briefing on Friday, foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying denied that Beijing was saddling its partners with onerous debt, saying that its loans to Sri Lanka and Pakistan were only a small part of those countries' overall foreign debt.
"It's unreasonable that money coming out of Western countries is praised as good and sweet, while coming out of China it's sinister and a trap," she said.
Stevenson-Yang said China's loans are quoted in dollar terms, "but in reality they're lending in terms of tractors, shipments of coal, engineering services and things like that, and they ask for repayment in hard currency."
Standard & Poor's said Beijing structures the infrastructure projects as long-term concessions, with a Chinese firm operating the facility for a period of 20 to 30 years while splitting the proceeds with the local counterpart or government.
The head of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, raised concerns about potential debt problems in April and advocated greater transparency.
"It's not a free lunch, it's something where everybody chips in," she said.
We've found another problem with IPv6: It's sparked a punch-up between top networks ' The Register
Sun, 02 Sep 2018 20:48
Analysis We've discovered another reason why IPv6 is, right now, a poor substitute to IPv4: fisticuffs have broken out over the protocol on the internet's trunk roads, causing traffic jams.
In a report this month by Qrator Labs, researchers dug into what they are calling national internet reliability: the ability of a country's internet to handle a loss of connectivity from one or more ISPs.
And the results are intriguing, not least because IPv6 networks appear to be significantly less stable than traditional IPv4 networks even though you might naturally assume that they would be the same '' it's just traffic and packets, right?
As you probably know, the internet is a network of networks. It works only because thousands of different companies all agree to let others' data flow across their networks and in return they allow the same. These are called peering agreements, and some come with various terms and conditions.
The internet is made up of tiers that group network providers in terms of size and bandwidth. There are fewer than a dozen top-tier companies that have huge pipes for shifting lots of data around the world. They have peering agreements with other tier-one providers in which neither side charges the other any money so that they can offer global coverage to the collective benefit.
These no-fee arrangements are also due to the fact that the amount of data flowing into, say, large network provider A from large provider B is practically the same as that flowing from A into B: it's a zero net situation, and there's no point invoicing each other for the same amount of cash for the bandwidth they've each used.
If you, as a network, fall into a tier where there's an imbalance on one side, then you have to start paying. Imagine small provider C runs a lot of internet traffic through large provider D, and D routes significantly less through network C. Now C has to cough up cash to D for that imbalance in bandwidth, otherwise it's getting a free ride.
Where there is a large difference in bandwidth and other resources consumed between two networks, someone '' usually the smaller player '' has to pay their dues. If the two networks exchange the same amount of traffic, then there's no point charging each other the same amount of money.
When we're talking huge amounts of traffic, hundreds or thousands of terabytes here, hundreds there, it doesn't really matter: it's considered to work out to a net zero on average. When you go down the levels of tiers to smaller networks where differences in bandwidth are more obvious, then free peering agreements tend not to work '' and someone inevitably demands money or some other consideration.
What has this to do with IPv6? Well, it appears that IPv6 may have given some companies an opening to the big leagues, with some trying to become tier-one providers for IPv6 and hence the future of the internet. And not everyone is excited about welcoming newcomers to the club.
Peer pressure This has resulted in a number of peering disputes '' where one company refuses to peer with another for free or on terms they feel are unfair '' and because of that, some parts of the world have far less resilience i.e. they are more reliant on a smaller number of companies to provide them with internet access.
The report notes that in 86 per cent of countries, IPv4 connectivity is significantly more reliable than with IPv6. IPv6 is, of course, supposed to be the internet's next-generation technology. There is nothing wrong with the protocol: it's triggering disputes between connectivity providers.
The authors are worried: "Explicit market calls for proper IPv6 service seem to be the only way to improve the situation. The Qrator.Radar team is considering different options to make this information transparent for every ISP in the world, thus improving community awareness of the problem."
The report specifically notes a long-running dispute between ISP Cogent and Hurricane Electric, as well as another between Deutsche Telekom and Verizon US.
"These telecoms may have different reasons for their conflicts, but if a network is connected only to one party in the conflict, it would not have full IPv6 connectivity," the report notes. "It also affects the reliability of ISPs with multiple upstream providers'Š - 'Šthe outage of one may lead to connectivity problems."
Cogent's fight with Hurricane Electric is so lengthy that there is even a video on YouTube in which a Hurricane representative reveals a cake with the message in frosting "Cogent (AS174) Please IPv6 peer with us XOXOX - Hurricane Electric (AS6939)." That was back in 2009.
Cogent CEO's acknowledges his company has been in more peering fights than any other Tier 1 provider and puts that down to the fact that his company's entire business is internet provision, whereas other providers exist in a broad range of telecommunications markets.
Hurricane Electric's special cake for Cogent urging it to peer with it.It didn't work
Bottom line Cogent also only survives among bigger predators by relentlessly focusing on the bottom line, offering the lowest prices through constantly updating its systems to get an edge, and not entering into any agreements where it doesn't think it will financially benefit.
These tensions are bigger in IPv6 where other Cogent-like companies are threatening its position. That has resulted in a refusal to peer with them and '' according to Qrator Labs '' caused greater instability because countries can't rely on multiple companies to provide them with access.
"To maintain global connectivity under IPv4, any single path to a Tier-1 provider is adequate. But in IPv6 this may not be enough," it notes. "Due to ongoing peering wars between several Tier-1 providers in IPv6, they are not all connected to each other."
As well as refusing Hurricane entry into the IPv6 big league, Cogent is also fighting with Google for much the same reason.
But there another detail in the report that suggests Cogent's belligerent dominance may be waning: it lost the top spot of importance in the United States.
"For two years '' 2016 and 2017 '' we identified Cogent's AS 174 as the crucial one for that market," the authors note, "This is no longer the case '' in 2018, Cogent has been replaced by the CenturyLink AS 209, and the change sent the United States up the list by three places, to seventh."
Local monopolies Local monopolies are something that almost every big cable company in the US has built their business model and lobbying efforts around, even though the rest of the world's advanced economies are less convinced and almost universally offer faster internet speeds to consumers at lower prices.
Another intriguing aspect of the report is one country in the top 20 that is dangerously reliant on a single company for IPv6. According to Qrator Labs, China through China Telecom is completely reliant on a single provider for its IPv6 support '' Hurricane Electric '' and that gives it a staggering 65 per cent on its index for IPv6; something that should not be the case for such a large and vibrant economy.
There is good news however, at least in the case of China. We checked today and literally this month, China Telecom has entered in peering agreements with Telia, NTT and GTT '' the graphs show a huge step up in IPv6 prefixes.
Until this month, China was massively reliant on a single company for its IPv6 connectivity. New peering agreements appear to have solved that.
What's the situation elsewhere?
At the absolute bottom are countries reliant entirely on one company for their internet. This is typically a conscious decision by a controlling government, or due to a country being extremely isolated.
Those with 100 per cent on Qrator Labs index include North Korea, Eritrea, Greenland, and New Caledonia. Then you have Ethiopia's 99 per cent dependency; Syria's 99.5 per cent, and so on. These dependencies ebb and flow '' for example, Syria's civil war has seen a German company drop out of the market and leave the country reliant on just one company.
High end At the other end of the scale are hyper-connected modern economies with strong competitive streaks. Germany steals the show with a 2.26 per cent IPv4 outage percentage '' meaning that it has so many large companies providing internet access that if any one of them fell over, it would barely have an impact on internet users. Next up is the UK '' which has long been a center of telecommunications with 3.10 per cent and so on.
IPv6: It's only NAT-ural that network nerds are dragging their feet... READ MORE Qrator Labs has done this survey for three years and notes that 17 of the top 20 last year are also in this year's top 20, so this is a foundational country-level measurement reflecting the importance of the internet to a nation's economy and society.
There is plenty more in the report, including a recent rise in resiliency in Asia and some question marks over countries like Jamaica and Monaco, but the authors have a clear conclusion:
"Our survey clearly shows that ISP markets that are built upon competition develop, in the end, to become much more stable and failure-resistant, in regards to risks from within or outside the surrounding region. Without a competitive market, a single AS failure could lead to network loss for a significant portion of users from a country or even a broader region." ®

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    this should be hell yeah and usually
  • 1:13
    most most most of the former stuff is on
  • 1:17
    our FDR rfd-tv
  • 1:20
    which is a cable station and they play
  • 1:23
    these these unbelievably long videos of
  • 1:27
    one train just going through you know
  • 1:30
    going here and there just keep following