1144: Climate Optimist

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

2h 55m
June 6th, 2019
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Executive Producers: Sir Hoopensocker, Jacob Shultis

Associate Executive Producers: Emma Blumer, Sir Dick Bangs, Somoza Candace

Cover Artist: Darren O'Neill

Chapters

0:00
Start of Show
Woodstock
1:20
Vox Adpocalypse
Woodstock
10:07
Vox: 'You’re Watching Fox News. You Just Don’t Know It.'
Woodstock
20:09
Jeff Zucker: "CNN Is Seeking The Truth"
Woodstock
24:35
The Daily Beast Accused of Doxxing Facebook User Who Created Drunk Nancy Pelosi Video
Woodstock
33:35
Axios: 'Jared Kushner Asked About Trump's Promotion of Birtherism'
Woodstock
37:09
AC's Haircut
Woodstock
40:23
Trump's UK Trip
Woodstock
49:39
The Guardian: 'Sadiq Khan to Trump: You Stand For the Opposite of London's Values'
Woodstock
53:13
Trump Calls Sadiq Khan & Jeremy Corbyn 'Negative Forces'
Woodstock
58:26
Trump Mentions UK's National Health Service When Commenting on US-UK Trade Talks
Woodstock
1:01:44
Melania Trump's UK Visit Outfits
Woodstock
1:03:07
PBS NewsHour: 'In Britain, Trump Combines Ceremony With Controversy'
Woodstock
1:09:41
Trump Asked If He's Willing to Meet With Iranian Leaders
Woodstock
1:10:39
Trump's Lizard Family
Woodstock
1:12:11
Trump Accused of Calling The Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle 'Nasty'
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1:14:33
Credits
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1:37:20
Nancy Pelosi
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1:43:18
Jamie Raskin
Woodstock
1:46:54
Australian Federal Police Raid News Corp Journalist's House & ABC Headquarters
Woodstock
1:52:43
US Senator Rand Paul Calls For Revoking Former CIA Director John Brennan's Security Clearance
Woodstock
1:53:41
DNC Email Leak Transferred Through USB Port
Woodstock
1:55:11
Steve Pieczenik: "US Will Release Julian Assange Under Special Circumstances"
Woodstock
1:59:07
JCD's Criminology Course
Woodstock
2:02:02
Hillary Clinton's Prediction on Her Haircut When In Office
Woodstock
2:02:44
Austin City Council Considers Changing Homelessness Ordinances
Woodstock
2:08:19
Producer Note: Homelessness
Woodstock
2:14:01
Donations
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2:25:42
Meetups
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2:26:46
Birthdays & Title Changes
Woodstock
2:28:29
Producer Note: Mainstream Media Podcast Production
Woodstock
2:31:39
'Neighbors by Ring' App
Woodstock
2:41:24
Apple's WWDC 2019 Keynote
Woodstock
2:44:20
Native Advertisment for Walmart on CBS
Woodstock
2:44:57
USA Today: 'HPV Vaccine Prevents Anal Cancer, Too, Desperate Housewives' Marcia Cross Reminds Us'
Woodstock
2:47:12
Study Finds White Meat Just As Bad As Red Meat For Your Cholesterol
Woodstock
2:49:23
End of Show
Woodstock
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The Purge
Demonetization is De-Commercialization
YouTube accused of ignoring homophobic abuse while 'exploiting' LGBT creators | The Drum
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 12:51
As LGBT Pride month kicks off, YouTube has been accused of failing to banish homophobia from its platform while at the same time "exploiting" LGBT creators for advertising dollars.
Following a series of accusations from Vox creator Carlos Maza, the Google-owned platform's content moderation and hate speech policies have come under scrutiny online.
Maza, a regular face on YouTube, has accused the site of "arming monsters" in a video in which he details how he has been the two-year "target of homophobic abuse" at the hands of prominent right-wing YouTube creator Steven Crowder (who has 3.8 million subscribers).
Maza shared historic clips of the Louder with Crowder host calling him a ''lispy queer,'' a ''token Vox gay atheist sprite,'' and a ''gay Mexican'' '' all part of a bid to get YouTube to ban the account on cyberbullying and hate speech grounds.
Maza said Crowder fans too had subjected him to a "wall of homophobic/racist abuse on Instagram and Twitter" and "doxed" his mobile number [maliciously shared it]. There are also multiple references to Maza's sexuality and ethnicity in the below video.
Since I started working at Vox, Steven Crowder has been making video after video "debunking" Strikethrough. Every single video has included repeated, overt attacks on my sexual orientation and ethnicity. Here's a sample: pic.twitter.com/UReCcQ2Elj
'-- Carlos Maza (@gaywonk) May 31, 2019
Having probed its star creator, YouTube has decided it will take no action against Crowder, who has been granted protections due to the talk show format and "expressed opinions".
The company said: "We take allegations of harassment very seriously '' we know this is important and impacts a lot of people.''
YouTube said its ''teams spent the last few days conducting an in-depth review of the videos'', adding: ''[While the] language that was clearly hurtful, the videos as posted don't violate our policies''.
It went into greater detail: ''As an open platform, it's crucial for us to allow everyone '' from creators to journalists to late-night TV hosts '' to express their opinions within the scope of our policies. Opinions can be deeply offensive, but if they don't violate our policies, they'll remain on our site. Even if a video remains on our site, it doesn't mean we endorse/support that viewpoint.''
YouTube added that it is still ''evaluating'' other aspects of the channel.
The platform has hate speech, bullying and harassment policies.
Content that ''is deliberately posted in order to humiliate someone'', ''makes hurtful and negative personal comments/videos about another person,'' or ''incites others to harass or threaten individuals on or off YouTube'' breaches these rules.
Additionally: ''Hate speech is not allowed on YouTube. We remove content promoting violence or hatred against individuals or groups based on any of the following attributes'' including ''sexual orientation'' and ''ethnicity''.
For breach of these policies, YouTube issues 'strikes' against channels. Creators or uploaders with three strikes are terminated. YouTube said it removed 47,443 videos and 10,623 accounts for cyberbullying and harassment violations in the first quarter of 2019
It put particular emphasis on whether the "criticism is focused primarily on debating the opinions expressed or is solely malicious".
It said that Crowder did not "harass, threaten, or incite hate" against Maza, but was rather responding to opinion.
Crowder ResponseAfter YouTube's ruling was issued on Twitter, Crowder uploaded a "long overdue and heartfelt apology" to "everyone he's ever offended". The comedic skit referenced multiple complaints made against him paired with insincere regret.
One point of concern for YouTube, pointed out by its critics, is that Crowder pulls millions of views each month, profiting from his opinions.
In the first 30 seconds of his "apology", which at the time of publication had reached 1.6m views, Crowder referred viewers to his 'Socialism is for F*gs' T-shirt. He told viewers where to buy the $25 merchandise, complete with a link in the description.
The store is hosted by Shopify.
In response to the ruling, Maza said: ''YouTube has decided that targeted racist and homophobic harassment does not violate its policies against hate speech or harassment. That's an absolutely batshit policy that gives bigots free license.
''If you're an LGBT creator, YouTube is using you. [It's] trotting you out to convince advertisers that [its] platform hasn't become a breeding ground for hate speech and bigotry. [It's] hoping you'll distract advertisers away from the monsters they're creating.
"And if you're an LGBT employee working at YouTube, what the fuck are you doing? Helping a guy sell 'Socialism Is For F*gs' t-shirts? That company isn't your friend. It's arming the monsters that we've spent our lives trying to get away from. Walk out of there.
''[The abuse is] going to get so much worse now. YouTube has publicly stated that racist and homophobic abuse doesn't violate [its] anti-bullying policies. Crowder and his allies are going to be emboldened. I genuinely can't imagine what LGBT employees at YouTube are doing right now.''
He urged the LGBT community to sidestep YouTube Pride activities in protest.
''Stop agreeing to participate in YouTube's Pride and public relations packages. The company is exploiting you while arming your abusers. Don't let [it] use you in corporate branding shit.''
He later tweeted: ''Can't fucking WAIT to see YouTube's Pride month video where they pretend to give a shit about the well-being of LGBT creators in order to *checks notes* help draw more advertisers to the platform to make more money.''
This issue helps illustrate the scale of the challenge facing the user-generated video platform but it goes further into the realms of misinformation, radicalisation, and user (and brand) safety.
The Drum columnist Samuel Scott previously claimed that "Human stupidity reinforced by YouTube's algorithm may kill us all because the company's recommendation engine is helping to spread a series of unfortunate far-right events". The marketing consultant took a look at the content a simple search for 'Nazism' conjures and claimed the platform has given new life to flat-earth and anti-vaccine movements.
For its part, YouTube is testing a fact-checking tool, informing users when they are research topics that are prone to "misinformation".
However, that's not the only issue facing the content platform this week. The New York Times branded 'YouTube's Digital Playground, an Open Gate for Pedophiles'. Back in February, YouTube said it was ''aggressively approaching'' a solution.
Those issues aside, YouTube has failed to quell the concerns of advertisers. Earlier this year a senior exec admitted that the platform will never be 100% brand safe.
FAQs - Change the Terms
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 10:17
What is the goal of these policies? What problem is this solving?
Just as the internet has created immense positive value by connecting people and creating new communities, it has also given new tools to those who want to hatefully threaten, harass, intimidate, defame, or even violently attack people different from themselves. White supremacists and other organizations engaged in these sorts of hateful activities use social media and other major tech platforms to mobilize, organize, fundraise, and normalize racism, sexism, bigotry, and xenophobia. In the past few years, hate activity online has grown significantly as the ''alt-right'' emerged from the shadows. At the Unite the Right Rally in Charlottesville in 2017, we saw a prime example of how the internet's invigoration of hate groups can result in real world violence.Meanwhile, the internet has opened up unprecedented opportunities for diverse communities to speak, create, educate, and entertain by building a direct connection with their audience and provided platforms to voices that would otherwise be silenced. Yet these same creators, including people of color, women, religious minorities, and members of the LGBTQIA community, are routinely harassed and threatened online; these attacks stifle their voices and chill their participation on these platforms.
These harms interfere with the ability of entire communities to use the most important technological advance of the modern era.Some of the larger tech companies have made attempts (some more successfully than others) to address hateful activities on their services. Indeed, some attempts have been over-inclusive, silencing diverse voices combating racism and discrimination. Most tech companies are committed to providing a safe and welcoming space for all users, even if they have so far failed to follow through on that commitment. But when tech companies try to regulate content arbitrarily, without civil rights expertise, or without sufficient resources, they can exacerbate the problem.
The goal of these policies is to provide greater structure, transparency, and accountability to the content moderation that many large platforms are already undertaking. The platforms want fair policies that are effectively enforced. We want to help them manage their platforms responsibly and respectfully.
ADL Statement on YouTube Policy Changes to Reduce Extremist Content | Anti-Defamation League
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 10:14
New York, NY, June 5, 2019 '... ADL (Anti-Defamation League) issued the following statement regarding YouTube's policy changes, announced today, to reduce extremist content, including white supremacy, conspiracy theories and Holocaust denialism:
"Online hate and extremism pose a significant threat -- weaponizing bigotry against marginalized communities, silencing voices through intimidation and acting as recruiting tools for hateful, fringe groups,'' said Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL CEO and National Director. ''That's why ADL has been working with technology companies, including YouTube, to aggressively counter hate on their platforms. We were glad to share our expertise on this and look forward to continuing to provide input. While this is an important step forward, this move alone is insufficient and must be followed by many more changes from YouTube and other tech companies to adequately counter the scourge of online hate and extremism."
A recent ADL survey found that 37 percent of Americans experienced severe online hate and harassment in 2018, including sexual harassment, stalking, physical threats or sustained harassment. Seventeen percent of all users experienced hate and harassment on YouTube specifically.
Building on ADL's century of experience building a world without hate, the Center for Technology and Society (CTS) serves as a resource to tech platforms and develops proactive solutions to fight hate both online and offline. CTS works at the intersection of technology and civil rights through education, research and advocacy.
YouTube to Remove Thousands of Videos Pushing Extreme Views - The New York Times
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 14:49
Image Content ''alleging that a group is superior in order to justify discrimination, segregation or exclusion'' and videos denying that violent incidents occurred will be removed, YouTube said Wednesday. Credit Credit Dado Ruvic/Reuters YouTube announced plans on Wednesday to remove thousands of videos and channels that advocate neo-Nazism, white supremacy and other bigoted ideologies in an attempt to clean up extremism and hate speech on its popular service.
The new policy will ban ''videos alleging that a group is superior in order to justify discrimination, segregation or exclusion,'' the company said in a blog post. The prohibition will also cover videos denying that violent events, like the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, took place.
YouTube did not name any specific channels or videos that would be banned. But on Wednesday, numerous far-right creators began complaining that their videos had been deleted, or had been stripped of ads, presumably a result of the new policy.
''It's our responsibility to protect that, and prevent our platform from being used to incite hatred, harassment, discrimination and violence,'' the blog post said.
The decision by YouTube, which is owned by Google, is the latest action by a Silicon Valley company to stem the spread of hate speech and disinformation on its site. A month ago, Facebook evicted seven of its most controversial users, including Alex Jones, the conspiracy theorist and founder of Infowars. Twitter barred Mr. Jones last year.
The companies have come under intense criticism for their delayed reaction to the spread of hateful and false content. At the same time, President Trump and others argue that the giant tech platforms censor right-wing opinions, and the new policies put in place by the companies have inflamed those debates.
The tension was evident on Tuesday, when YouTube said a prominent right-wing creator who used racial language and homophobic slurs to harass a journalist in videos on YouTube did not violate its policies. The decision set off a firestorm online, including accusations that YouTube was giving a free pass to some of its popular creators.
In the videos, that creator, Steven Crowder, a conservative commentator with nearly four million YouTube subscribers, repeatedly insulted Carlos Maza, a journalist from Vox. Mr. Crowder used slurs about Mr. Maza's Cuban-American ethnicity and sexual orientation. Mr. Crowder said his comments were harmless, and YouTube determined that they did not break its rules.
''Opinions can be deeply offensive, but if they don't violate our policies, they'll remain on our site,'' YouTube said in a statement about its decision on Mr. Crowder.
On Wednesday, YouTube appeared to backtrack, saying that Mr. Crowder had, in fact, violated its rules, and that his ability to earn money from ads on his channel would be suspended as a result.
''We came to this decision because a pattern of egregious actions has harmed the broader community,'' the company wrote on Twitter.
The whiplash-inducing deliberations illustrated a central theme that has defined the moderation struggles of social media companies: Making rules is often easier than enforcing them.
''This is an important and long-overdue change,'' Becca Lewis, a research affiliate at the nonprofit organization Data & Society, said about the new policy. ''However, YouTube has often executed its community guidelines unevenly, so it remains to be seen how effective these updates will be.''
YouTube's scale '-- more than 500 hours of new videos are uploaded every minute '-- has made it difficult for the company to track rule violations. And the company's historically lax approach to moderating extreme videos has led to a drumbeat of scandals, including accusations that the site has promoted disturbing videos to children and allowed extremist groups to organize on its platform. YouTube's automated advertising system has paired offensive videos with ads from major corporations, prompting several advertisers to abandon the site.
The kind of content that will be prohibited under YouTube's new hate speech policies includes videos that claim Jews secretly control the world, that say women are intellectually inferior to men and therefore should be denied certain rights, or that suggest that the white race is superior to another race, a YouTube spokesman said.
Channels that post some hateful content, but that do not violate YouTube's rules with the majority of their videos, may receive strikes under YouTube's three-strike enforcement system, but would not be immediately banned.
The company also said channels that ''repeatedly brush up against our hate speech policies'' but don't violate them outright would be removed from YouTube's advertising program, which allows channel owners to share in the advertising revenue their videos generate.
In addition to tightening its hate speech rules, YouTube announced that it would tweak its recommendation algorithm, the automated software that shows users videos based on their interests and past viewing habits. This algorithm is responsible for more than 70 percent of overall time spent on YouTube, and has been a major engine for the platform's growth. But it has also drawn accusations of leading users down rabbit holes filled with extreme and divisive content, in an attempt to keep them watching and drive up the site's use numbers.
''If the hate and intolerance and supremacy is a match, then YouTube is lighter fluid,'' said Rashad Robinson, president of the civil rights nonprofit Color of Change. ''YouTube and other platforms have been quite slow to address the structure they've created to incentivize hate.''
In response to the criticism, YouTube announced in January that it would recommend fewer objectionable videos, such as those with conspiracy theories about the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and vaccine misinformation, a category it called ''borderline content.'' The YouTube spokesman said on Tuesday that the algorithm changes had resulted in a 50 percent drop in recommendations to such videos in the United States. He declined to share specific data about which videos YouTube considered ''borderline.''
''Our systems are also getting smarter about what types of videos should get this treatment, and we'll be able to apply it to even more borderline videos moving forward,'' the company's blog post said.
Other social media companies have faced criticism for allowing white supremacist content. Facebook recently banned a slew of accounts, including that of Paul Joseph Watson, a contributor to Infowars, and Laura Loomer, a far-right activist. Twitter bars violent extremist groups but allows some of their members to maintain personal accounts '-- for instance, the Ku Klux Klan was barred from Twitter in August, while its former leader David Duke remains on the service.
Twitter is studying whether the removal of content is effective in stemming the tide of radicalization online. A Twitter spokesman declined to comment on the study.
When Twitter barred Mr. Jones, he responded with a series of videos denouncing the platform's decision and drumming up donations from his supporters.
YouTube's ban of white supremacists could prompt a similar cycle of outrage and grievance, said Joan Donovan, the director of the Technology and Social Change Research Project at Harvard. The ban, she said, ''presents an opportunity for content creators to get a wave of media attention, so we may see some particularly disingenuous uploads.''
''I wonder to what degree will the removed content be amplified on different platforms, and get a second life?'' Ms. Donovan added.
AT&T to Advertise on YouTube Again After a Nearly 2-Year Holdout - The New York Times
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 14:51
Image AT&T pulled its advertising from YouTube in 2017 because it was appearing near offensive content too often. Credit Credit Mike Blake/Reuters AT&T thinks YouTube is safe for advertisers again.
The company, one of the nation's biggest marketers, yanked its dollars from YouTube in 2017 because its ads were appearing alongside offensive videos. But on Friday, AT&T said it had been persuaded to resume advertising on the video platform.
The decision reflects the progress that Google-owned YouTube has made with advertisers in the 22 months since a number of them discovered that some of their ads were appearing during, or before, videos promoting hate speech, terrorism and other disturbing content. AT&T was among the first companies that stopped paying to advertise on YouTube, telling it that they wouldn't return until it made improvements.
YouTube has since introduced a series of changes aimed at making the platform ''brand safe'' '-- that is, an appropriate place for companies to run advertisements. It has raised the number of subscribers and the viewership that video makers must have in order to carry ads, and is subjecting videos to more human and automated oversight.
''The testing took time, and we needed to be 100 percent confident throughout our organization that it met the standards that we were aiming for,'' Fiona Carter, AT&T's chief brand officer, said in an interview. ''We want a near-zero chance of our advertising appearing next to objectionable content, and that's a high standard.''
Companies have long paid close attention to the content that they fund with their television commercials. Shows like ''Gilmore Girls,'' for example, were backed by an advertiser group that sought to produce more prime-time programming for families. Lowe's and others dropped ads from ABC's ''Desperate Housewives'' in 2004 because they thought it was too racy. And after revelations that Bill O'Reilly had reached settlements with women over allegations of harassment and inappropriate behavior, at least 50 major brands said they would not advertise on his Fox News show, hastening his exit from the network.
Many brands were not paying the same attention to their online advertising, outside of avoiding the obvious, like pornography sites. In the past two years, however, the business of brand safety has boomed, and major marketers have sought new control over their digital presence '-- even if that means leaving platforms that reach vast numbers of young people, like YouTube.
The advertiser exodus brought a focus to the potential risks of digital ads, which often follow individuals on whatever content they are viewing. Questions were raised about what that meant for advertisers, which could inadvertently end up funding disturbing material and be associated with such content by viewers.
''We care deeply about where we appear and whether it reflects our values and whether it breaks that trust with our consumers,'' Ms. Carter said. ''It was a moment to remind us that marketers must have their hands on the wheel at all times of their brands' destiny.''
The outcry over YouTube occurred as brands were discovering their automatically placed ads on websites promoting conspiracy theories and other toxic material. JPMorgan Chase, for example, reduced the number of sites that could run its display ads to about 5,000 after The New York Times showed the company one of its ads on a site called Hillary 4 Prison, where a headline promised to reveal ''the horrifying truth about the Satanic liberal perverts who run Hollywood.'' Previously, the company was running ads on about 400,000 sites a month.
At the same time, brands came under pressure from activists to pull their ads from Breitbart News, the hard-right, nationalist website closely tied to President Trump's administration. Most of the brands were unaware that their ads had been appearing there.
To some, the action by advertisers was a shift of a pendulum that had swung too far toward automation.
Ms. Carter wrote in a LinkedIn post on Friday that while she was ''thrilled'' to be back on YouTube, she was ''glad that we packed up our ads and walked away in the first place.''
''As powerful as digital platforms are in today's advertising ecosystem,'' she added, ''they can't be permitted to disempower the brands that use them to reach their customers.''
Still, even as YouTube wins back major clients like AT&T, that doesn't mean the platform is ''out of the woods in terms of brand safety issues,'' said Brian Wieser, a media analyst at Pivotal Research.
''Any nonhuman-curated platform will have risks,'' he said. ''The question is, are advertisers willing to take the risks? And generally speaking, the answer is yes. Brand unsafe or inappropriate things will still happen, and it just comes down to you hope to get the obvious things.''
Testing that AT&T conducted after the problem arose showed that it was widespread. Ms. Carter gave credit to Google's and YouTube's leaders, who ''leaned into the issue when they realized from the evidence we produced that perhaps it was a broader issue than they were aware of.''
Marketers and their agencies have also learned more about the types of content that they may want to avoid. For example, Ms. Carter said, AT&T looks to avoid gaming videos, where the chances of unsavory chatter and behavior may increase.
''Having to have more subscribers and more viewing hours has really helped with eliminating fringe content that we might not want to advertise against,'' she said.
In AT&T's latest test of YouTube's Brand Suitability System, which avoids categories like violence, extremist and hate speech, and adult content, almost zero ads ran alongside offensive content.
In April, Procter & Gamble, the world's biggest advertiser, confirmed that it was returning to YouTube after they worked together ''extensively'' to ensure that its ads would be placed in appropriate environments.
Procter & Gamble spent $2.8 billion on ads in 2017, according to data from Kantar Media. AT&T, the second-biggest advertiser in the United States, spent $2.4 billion in the same period.
''Over the past year, we've worked hard to address concerns raised by our customers,'' Debbie Weinstein, vice president of YouTube Video Global Solutions, said in a statement. ''We're committed to retaining their trust in YouTube, and ensuring they can realize the unique value of our platform.''
YouTube has an enormous audience of viewers in their teens and 20s, and Ms. Carter said on Thursday that she was keen to reach that group again. She added, however, that AT&T and its agency would continue testing to make sure its guidelines were being met.
''Technological advancements mean you have to be on your game and you have to be constantly vigilant in this area,'' Ms. Carter said.
Trump in UK
Giant penis mowed into lawn near UK airport where Trump landed -- Society's Child -- Sott.net
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 12:27
(C) born_eco '/twitter
Even before the US president managed to set foot on British soil, some locals attempted to give him a hard time with a rude message on climate change. Theresa May is expected to challenge Trump on his denial of climate change during his three-day state visit to the UK.
Ollie Nancarrow, a cocky 18-year-old art student, spent the weekend mowing out "Oi Trump" alongside a gigantic outline of a penis in a field for the POTUS to see as he'd fly into Stansted Airport.
At a nearby field, Ollie also left the message "Climate change is real" below a drawing of a polar bear.
The image of the stunt may offend sensibilities, but if you still want to see it, click here.
The student runs Born-eco, an online marketplace selling eco-friendly furniture and accessories.
"Donald Trump and his denial of climate change are not welcome and I want him to be fully aware of that when he flies in to Stansted on Monday," he told a local newspaper.
Donald Trump, who once accused climate change scientists of having "political agenda", has courted controversy over his stance on the issue. Throughout his 2016 presidential campaign, he denied climate change and pledge to withdraw the United States from the Paris accord, which aimed to curb the emission of planet-warming gases and contain global temperature rises.
He delivered on that promise in 2017, while also launching a bid to ease Obama-era power sector rules and climate regulations, much to the outrage of environmental activists.
Last November, he cast doubt on a government report predicting that if the emissions growth stays at its current rate, it would bring hundreds of billions of dollars of damage to the US economy by the end of the century.
Most recently, he ridiculed Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's so-called Green New Deal, a legislative initiative aimed at switching to a 100-per cent renewables-based economy and "decarbonising" national manufacturing, agriculture, and transport industries.
"It's something our country needs desperately," he said sarcastically at a conservative conference in March. "They have to go out and get it. But I'll take the other side of that argument only because I'm mandated to. I'm mandated."
Melania Wears Custom-Made Outfit, Channeling The Late Princess Diana's Style | The Daily Caller
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 12:47
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\n HomeVideoPoliticsUSWorldEntertainmentSportsBusinessOpinionOutdoorsComedyShopDaily Caller ShopDaily DealerWine ClubSend a Tip12:33 PM 06/03/2019 | VideoMolly Prince | Politics Reporter
First lady Melania Trump wore a dress reminiscent of the late Princess Diana on Monday as she accompanied U.S. President Donald Trump on the family's first state trip to the United Kingdom.
Melania's dress was noticeably similar to a white outfit worn by the Princess Diana in 1991 while she attended a parade in London. The event was to celebrate Gulf War veterans' homecoming, which Queen Elizabeth II and the royal family presided over.
U.S. President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump are greeted. (Victoria Jones '' WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Diana's hat was a custom design by British artist Marina Killery, who made hats for London society at the time. The Princess of Wales was reportedly one of Killery's most loyal clients. (RELATED: Melania Trump Responds To Vogue Magazine Snub)
WATCH:
The first lady wore a white Dolce & Gabbana suit with a custom hat by Herve Pierre as she was welcomed to the United Kingdom, according to East Wing spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham. After the first family landed on the lawn of Buckingham Palace via Marine One, the duo was greeted by Prince Charles and his wife Camilla, who similarly donned a white dress with matching hat.
NEW: @FLOTUS wearing a custom @dolcegabbana dress for her meeting with the Queen today. The hat is an original design by her couturier, designer Herv(C) Pierre. Here is Pierre's sketch of the hat: pic.twitter.com/IfWmZxMIXS
'-- Kate Bennett (@KateBennett_DC) June 3, 2019
It has been nearly a year since Trump and Melania first met with the Queen at Windsor Castle in July 2018.
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Tags : dolce gabbana melania trump princess diana united kingdomSearch
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It's un-British to roll out the red carpet for Donald Trump | Sadiq Khan | US news | The Guardian
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 16:14
P raising the ''very fine people on both sides'' when torch-wielding white supremacists and antisemites marched through the streets clashing with anti-racist campaigners. Threatening to veto a ban on the use of rape as a weapon of war. Setting an immigration policy that forcefully separates young children from their parents at the border. The deliberate use of xenophobia, racism and ''otherness'' as an electoral tactic. Introducing a travel ban to a number of predominately Muslim countries. Lying deliberately and repeatedly to the public.
No, these are not the actions of European dictators of the 1930s and 40s. Nor the military juntas of the 1970s and 80s. I'm not talking about Vladimir Putin or Kim Jong-un. These are the actions of the leader of our closest ally, the president of the United States of America. This is a man who tried to exploit Londoners' fears following a horrific terrorist attack on our city, amplified the tweets of a British far-right racist group, denounced as fake news robust scientific evidence warning of the dangers of climate change, and is now trying to interfere shamelessly in the Conservative party leadership race by backing Boris Johnson because he believes it would enable him to gain an ally in Number 10 for his divisive agenda.
Donald Trump is just one of the most egregious examples of a growing global threat. The far right is on the rise around the world, threatening our hard-won rights and freedoms and the values that have defined our liberal, democratic societies for more than seventy years. Viktor Orbn in Hungary, Matteo Salvini in Italy, Marine Le Pen in France and Nigel Farage here in the UK are using the same divisive tropes of the fascists of the 20th century to garner support, but are using new sinister methods to deliver their message. And they are gaining ground and winning power and influence in places that would have been unthinkable just a few years ago.
They are intentionally pitting their own citizens against one another, regardless of the horrific impact in our communities. They are picking on minority groups and the marginalised to manufacture an enemy '' and encouraging others to do the same. And they are constructing lies to stoke up fear and to attack the fundamental pillars of a healthy democracy '' equality under the law, the freedom of the press and an independent justice system. Trump is seen as a figurehead of this global far-right movement. Through his words and actions, he has given comfort to far-right political leaders, and it's no coincidence that his former campaign manager, Steve Bannon, has been touring the world, spreading hateful views and bolstering the far right wherever he goes.
That's why it's so un-British to be rolling out the red carpet this week for a formal state visit for a president whose divisive behaviour flies in the face of the ideals America was founded upon '' equality, liberty and religious freedom.
There are some who argue that we should hold our noses and stomach the spectacle of honouring Trump in this fashion '' including many Conservative politicians. They say we need to be realists and stroke his ego to maintain our economic and military relationship with the US. But at what point should we stop appeasing '' and implicitly condoning '' his far-right policies and views? Where do we draw the line?
Rather than bestowing Trump with a grand platform of acceptability to the world, we should be speaking out and saying that this behaviour is unacceptable '' and that it poses a grave threat to the values and principles we have fought hard to defend '' often together '' for decades.
I am proud of our historic special relationship, which I'm certain will survive long after President Trump leaves office. The US is a country I love and have visited on many occasions. I still greatly admire the culture, the people and the principles articulated by the founding fathers. But America is like a best friend, and with a best friend you have a responsibility to be direct and honest when you believe they are making a mistake.
In years to come, I suspect this state visit will be one we look back on with profound regret and acknowledge that we were on the wrong side of history.
It's too late to stop the red-carpet treatment, but it's not too late for the prime minister to do the right thing. Theresa May should issue a powerful rejection '' not of the US as a country or the office of the presidency, but of Trump and the far-right agenda he embodies. She should say that the citizens of the UK and the US agree on many things, but that Trump's views are incompatible with British values.
History teaches us of the danger of being afraid to speak truth to power and the risk of failing to defend our values from the rise of the far right. At this challenging time in global politics, it's more important than ever that we remember that lesson.
Sadiq Khan is the mayor of London
You Can't Stop Us Marching Against Trump
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 11:15
Written by Lamiat Sabin on 28 May 2019. Posted in News & Comment
Lindsey German: ''We will not be put off. We've done it before and we will do it again.''
Last year's huge demonstration against Trump in London
A police ban aimed at preventing Stop Trump protesters from marching through Whitehall when Donald Trump meets Theresa May on a state visit next week will meet furious resistance, organisers say.
Lindsey German, of the Stop the War Coalition, told the Star that protesters will ''not accept'' the Metropolitan Police's ban. She is calling on anti-Trump activists to sign a petition that calls on the force to overturn it.
The US President will meet the Prime Minister next Tuesday after meeting the Queen the day before. Three days later, Ms May will step down as PM after announcing her resignation last week.
The meeting could be considered a far-right ''handover'' exercise as it is expected that Mr Trump would also meet leadership hopeful Boris Johnson, and possibly Nigel Farage ''whose Brexit Party took the largest share of votes in the recent European Parliament elections.
Ms German said: ''Theresa May saw this meeting as one of her final acts in office, but it's going to be a disaster and he's going to insult her.
''Meeting with Johnson and Farage is virtually inevitable given the election results.''
Protesters must be allowed to turn out in full force as close to Downing Street as they can get, she added.
''On Friday night, police told us that they will give a space for several thousand people but that we cannot march down Whitehall,'' Ms German continued.
''We will not accept it so we will challenge it. We are determined to get as close to Downing Street as possible.
''The Prime Minister has just resigned and invited over a racist, sexist warmonger. If the Tories think that's a good idea then they better think again.''
The petition '' started by Together Against Trump on Change.org '' had received more than 2,500 signatures by yesterday afternoon.
Ms German is urging supporters to sign the petition, and said activists will ''keep complaining to the police'' as well as get MPs to also speak out against the ban.
She added: ''We'll make it clear to our supporters that we will be protesting as widely as possible.
''We will not be put off. We've done it before and we will do it again.''
The petition says: ''[The ban] is a denial of the right to protest against a state visit most Londoners oppose.
''Taxpayers' money should not be spent shielding Donald Trump from legal protest. We demand protesters be given the right to march.''
PETITION LINK: https://bit.ly/2HESgjT
Source: The Morning Star
Tags: united-kingdom
Patrons, Officers, Steering Cttee
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 11:05
Written by Stop the War on 09 May 2013. Posted in About
PresidentBrian Eno
PatronsDiane AbbottAnas AltikritiTariq AliSalma YaqoobMark RylanceGeorge GallowayAlice MahonKamal MajidKika MarkhamBilly HayesMark SerwotkaKeith SonnetWalter Wolfgang Officers Murad Qureshi ChairLindsey German ConvenorSweta ChoudhuryCarol TurnerIan ChamberlainFiona EdwardsKate HudsonAlex KennyChris Nineham Vice ChairJudith OrrSteve Bell TreasurerShabbir LakhaAndrew MurrayJohn ReesBilly Hayes Steering CommitteeElected at the 2018 National Conference
Shelly Asquith
Faysal Banirad Kurdish Assembly
Robin Beste
Daniel Blaney CND
Richard Brackenbury
Jim Brann
Andrew Burgin
Alistair Cartwright
Ian Chamberlain
Sweta Choudhury
Abbas Edalat CASMII
Fiona Edwards
Shadia Edwards-Dashti
Rob Ferguson
Joe Glenton VFPUK
Faduma Hassan
Billy Hayes
Kate Hudson CND
Joan Humphries MFAW
Ben Jamal PSC
Shamiul Joarder Friends of Al-Aqsa
Tekin Kartel DAY-MER
Nese Kayacan Kurdish Assembly
Aaron Kiely
Alex Kenny NEU NUT section
Shabbir Lakha
Frances Legg
Emily Mann CPB
Jonathan Maunders
Andrew Murray Unite
Chris Nineham
Barney O'Connor
Judith Orr SWP
Kevin Ovenden
Samir Ramadani Iraqi Democrats
John Rees
Bernard Regan
Andy Reid PCS
Maz Saleem
Jane Shallice
Carol Turner
Dave Wetzel Green Party
Matthew Willgress
Walter Wolfgang Labour CND
Trump wavers after saying NHS must be on table in US-UK trade talks | US news | The Guardian
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 13:17
Donald Trump has declared he wants the NHS to be on the table in any US-UK trade deal and refused to meet the ''negative'' Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, who pledged to oppose US corporations taking over the health service with every breath in his body.
On the second day of his state visit, during which he has been hosted by the Queen and Theresa May, the US president set out his ambitions for a ''phenomenal'' post-Brexit trade deal with the UK.
But following a cross-party backlash, the president later appeared to row back on his comments. In an interview with Good Morning Britain's Piers Morgan, he said: ''I don't see [the NHS] being on the table. Somebody asked me a question today and I say everything is up for negotiation, because everything is. But that's something I would not see as part of trade. That's not trade.''
Appearing earlier in the day alongside the outgoing prime minister at a joint press conference, Trump said US companies should have market access to every sector of the British economy as part of any deal, which he said could lead to a tripling of trade with the UK.
''When you're dealing on trade, everything is on the table. So NHS or anything else. A lot more than that,'' he said, although May appeared to have to explain to Trump what the NHS was before he answered the question.
Trump's statement drew immediate condemnation from several Tory leadership hopefuls as well as senior Labour politicians.
There are widespread concerns in the UK about US firms promising to provide cost-cutting health services and wanting to sell food produced to lower environmental and animal welfare standards, such as chlorine-washed chicken.
After arriving in the UK on Air Force One on Monday 3 June, US president Donald Trump will be formally welcomed in a ceremony in the gardens of Buckingham Palace. It will be attended by the Queen and Prince Charles. The president will then attend a private lunch at the palace, which is expected to be attended by Prince Harry, but not his wife, who Trump recently described as 'nasty'.
Following a wreath-laying ceremony in Westminster Abbey, Donald Trump will join Prince Charles for an afternoon tea at Clarence House. The Queen, Prince Charles and Prince Harry will then host a state banquet in the evening, which will be attended by prominent US citizens who live in the UK, as well as political and civic leaders.
On Tuesday 4 June the visit includes a breakfast meeting with Prince Andrew, and then talks and a press conference with prime minister Theresa May at Downing Street. On the Tuesday evening Trump hosts a dinner at the residence of the US ambassador.
On Wednesday 5 June Trump will take part in commemoration services in Portsmouth to mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings. The day ends with the Queen formally bidding farewell to the US president.
Trump's entourage will also include two identical seven-seat black armoured limousines nicknamed 'The Beast', and a number of presidential helicopters. The president has at his side at all times one of five rotating military aides who carry the nuclear 'football' which can trigger a missile strike - equipped with communication tools and a book with prepared war plans.
Photograph: Jonathan Ernst/X90178
Corbyn told a packed protest on Whitehall, not far from the press conference, he would not allow Brexit to open up ''our precious wonderful National Health Service to private American companies to come in and take it over''.
''We will not stand for that. We will fight with every last breath of our body to defend the principle of a healthcare system free at the point of need for everybody as a human right,'' he said.
Thousands of people protest against Donald Trump's state visit '' videoCorbyn turned down an invitation to the Queen's state banquet for Trump but it emerged during the press conference that he had requested a private meeting with the president.
Trump said he had rejected the request from Corbyn, describing him as ''somewhat of a negative force''.
''He wanted to meet today or tomorrow, and I decided that I would not do that,'' he said. ''I really don't like critics as much as I like and respect someone who can get things done.''
He dismissed the protest attended by Corbyn as ''very small'' and ''fake news'', while implausibly claiming thousands had lined the streets to welcome him on Monday. Organisers of anti-Trump protests said up to 75,000 people had demonstrated against the state visit in central London.
May appeared uncomfortable at the suggestion the NHS could be included in a trade deal, saying both sides would ''negotiate and come to an agreement about what should or should not be in that trade deal for the future''. However, she did not explicitly rule it out.
That was left to Matt Hancock, the health secretary, who is running to be Conservative leader. ''Dear Mr President. The NHS isn't on the table in trade talks '' and never will be. Not on my watch,'' he tweeted.
Jeremy Hunt, the former health secretary, also ruled it out this week, saying: ''I can't conceive of any future prime minister, for any party, ever agreeing that we would allow NHS procurement to be part of trade talks, because the NHS as a publicly run, publicly owned institution is part of our DNA.''
Even Dominic Raab, a rightwinger in the Tory contest who has suggested offering tax breaks to companies wanting to provide NHS services, said: ''I want to see the UK get fair deals on trade with the US and many other countries when we leave the EU. But the NHS is not for sale to any country and never would be if I was prime minister.''
As well as backtracking on his NHS views, Trump also softened his stance towards Corbyn, holding out the prospect of a meeting in the future. Asked if he could imagine negotiating a trade deal with a government led by the Labour leader, Trump said: ''It's always possible. Anything is possible.''
With May leaving office by the end of July, Trump was careful to praise her efforts to deliver Brexit but also made it known he was planning to talk to the leading candidates to replace her.
The US president was due to have one-to-ones with Hunt and Michael Gove, the environment secretary, but Boris Johnson, the frontrunner, turned down the chance of a meeting in order to address One Nation Tory MPs at a hustings event on Tuesday night.
Asked for his views on the candidates, Trump said: ''I know Boris. I like him. I've liked him for a long time. I think he'd do a very good job. I know Jeremy. I think he'd do a very good job. I don't know Michael. Would he do a good job, Jeremy? Tell me.'' In fact, Gove had interviewed Trump for the Times in January 2017, with the pair pictured together with their thumbs aloft.
Two hardline Brexit supporters, Iain Duncan Smith, the former Tory leader, and Owen Paterson, a former cabinet minister, both met Trump as well and Nigel Farage was later pictured driving into the US ambassador's residence for a meeting. Afterwards, the Brexit party leader tweeted: ''Good meeting with President Trump '' he really believes in Brexit and is loving his trip to London.''
Trump and the first lady Melania also hosted Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, at Winfield House in Regent's PArk in London, the official residence of the US ambassador.
Tory leadership candidates' views on any trade deal are likely to be high on the agenda when they meet Trump. But their position on Huawei, the Chinese tech firm, is also crucial as the US is opposed to its involvement in the UK's 5G communications network and has hinted it could harm US-UK intelligence sharing.
However, Trump said there should be ''no problem'' with intelligence sharing between the US and UK based on his conversations with May, raising the prospect of a possible climbdown on the issue.
''We are going to have an agreement on Huawei and everything else,'' he said. ''We have an incredible intelligence relationship and we will be able to work out any differences. We did discuss it. I see absolutely no limitations. We've never had limitations. This is a truly great ally and partner and we'll have no problem with that.''
A No 10 spokesman said only that there was a review of the Huawei plans under way and declined to say whether the NHS could be part of any trade deal.
After Trump's press conference, politicians called on the Conservative leadership candidates to rule out allowing it as the price of a trade deal.
Jonathan Ashworth, the shadow health secretary, said US corporations ''taking over our NHS is a nightmare scenario''.
''The Tories appear happy to give Trump what he wants, and some want to offer up our NHS to get the no-deal Brexit they are campaigning for,'' he said. ''If our NHS is taken over by US corporations, it will undermine it as a free, universal public service. The NHS is only safe in Labour hands.''
Tom Brake, the Liberal Democrat Brexit spokesman, said: ''Millions of people will be shocked and angry at the suggestion of selling off access to our NHS in return for the opportunity for Donald Trump to fill our shelves with chlorinated chicken,'' he said. ''The Liberal Democrats will continue to fight for the people to get the final say on Brexit so that we can protect the NHS.''
Trump, the Central Park Five and the Real 'When They See Us' | Time
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 11:36
The newspaper ad shows up in the second episode of Ava DuVernay's new Netflix drama When They See Us. It's a full-page proclamation, headlined in capital letters: ''BRING BACK THE DEATH PENALTY. BRING BACK OUR POLICE!''
Like the rest of the series, this ad is taken from the real story of the Central Park jogger case '-- the rape and beating of jogger Trisha Meili on April 19, 1989 '-- and the subsequent consequences for the Central Park Five, the teen suspects whose lives were upended in the more than a decade that passed between the event and their eventual exoneration.
And the history the series draws from isn't just a matter of things that happened 30 years ago: in real life as in the show, the person who spent $85,000 placing the ads in local papers was Donald Trump.
Trump, at the time a real estate developer, wasn't the first to draw attention to the case. The horrific Central Park attack on a 28-year-old woman, a white investment banker with degrees from Wellesley and Yale, quickly made local news. As part of a police investigation into ''a larger rampage in which several people were randomly attacked in the park that night'' by teens who were ''wilding,'' as TIME later reported, police picked up several suspects who were in roughly the same area of the park around the time of the attack. They were a group of African American and Hispanic teens named Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana and Kharey Wise, who became known collectively as the Central Park Five.
But though the news was already making headlines, Trump's ad, which ran in local papers less than two weeks after the incident, played a key role in shaping public opinion about the case.
His open letter mourned how New York families of all races ''have had to give up the pleasure of a leisurely stroll in the Park at Dusk'' because of ''roving thousands of wild criminals.'' He argued that politicians were overly concerned with public outcry about police brutality '-- such as the fatal shooting of a disabled elderly black woman by a NYPD officer in the mid-1980s '-- to the point that they weren't letting the ''neighborhood cop'' do his job of protecting the community, creating a ''reckless and dangerously permissive atmosphere which allows criminals of every age to beat and rape a helpless woman.'' He said ''these muggers and murderers'...should be forced to suffer and, when they kill, they should be executed for their crimes.''
Michael Warren, a member of the Central Park Five legal team, argued in The Guardian in 2016 that Trump ''poisoned the minds of many people who lived in New York and who, rightfully, had a natural affinity for the victim.''
Harlem, N.Y. City Councilman Bill Perkins holds up a May 1, 1989, ad taken out by Donald Trump in the days after the crime. Seated, Angela Cuffie meets reporters at Manhattan Supreme Court where a judge overturned the conviction of her brother, Kevin Richardson, and four other men who had been jailed in the Central Park jogger case on Dec. 19, 2002.
Mike Albans/NY Daily News Archive'--Getty Images
As Ava DuVernay recently told Rolling Stone, ''[The suspects' mothers] knew what a threat it was, the violence that Trump was basically inciting upon these boys. But the men themselves, when I asked them, they really didn't have much of a memory [of Trump in 1989]; at the time, he was the guy with gold buildings. Just a white dude on the other side of the park.''
While four had given video confessions, they later said those had been coerced and all maintained their innocence. (Studies have shown that false confessions are a particular problem with young suspects.) There were also notable inconsistencies in their statements and other eyewitness accounts.
Still, two juries convicted the five in 1990. They served prison sentences ranging from six years to 13 years.
On Dec. 19. 2002, the convictions of the five men were vacated after a man named Matias Reyes, whose DNA matched evidence from the crime, confessed to having been responsible. The police department has said it still believes the men were involved in some way and the victim, Meili, has said that she wishes the case had gone back to court because she still believes more than one person was responsible, but the city settled with the five in 2014, giving each roughly $1 million for each year spent behind bars.
Get your history fix in one place: sign up for the weekly TIME History newsletter
Even after the exonerations, Trump has continued to maintain that the five men had been criminals.
In 2013, he tweeted that a 2012 documentary film called The Central Park Five, made by Ken Burns and his daughter Sarah Burns, ''didn't explain the horrific crimes of these young men while in the park.''
''Mr. Trump is apparently ignorant of our country's epidemic of wrongful convictions, which disproportionately affect minorities, and the prevalence of false confessions in those convictions,'' Sarah Burns later wrote in the New York Times.
Trump called the more than $40 million settlement that the five men worked out with New York City a ''disgrace,'' writing in a June 2014 op-ed for the New York Daily News, ''What about the other people who were brutalized that night, in addition to the jogger?'...These young men do not exactly have the pasts of angels.'' None of the five had been arrested before.
Since then, he has repeatedly reiterated the guilty verdict of the men, even though their convictions were vacated. ''They admitted they were guilty,'' the then-candidate said in a CNN interview the month before the 2016 election. ''The police doing the original investigation say they were guilty. The fact that that case was settled with so much evidence against them is outrageous. And the woman, so badly injured, will never be the same.''
Just this week, when President Trump argued on Twitter on May 27 that African Americans won't vote for 2020 Democratic presidential candidates who supported the 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, a law that experts say has contributed to the mass incarceration of black people, DuVernay fired back that Trump himself had played a big role in creating the atmosphere that made its passage possible.
''[The Central Park Five] were innocent,'' the filmmaker wrote. ''And they will have the last word.'' When They See Us, which is based on interviews with the real Central Park Five, is DuVernay's attempt to let those men do just that.
Write to Olivia B. Waxman at olivia.waxman@time.com.
GO Podcasting!
MSM Podcast Budgeting
The Agency also suggest
Cost
per Pilot:
· Salary/stipend: host (30-50 hours)
producer (70 hours); editor (5-10 hours)
· Non-Salary: travel, ISDN, other.
Timing/Cadence:
· 6 weeks of production
· Product review during 2 week intervals
during pilot period.
Key Activities:
· Approval of pilot production timeline
and budget.
· Regular check ins with Editor.
· Pilot concept must first be approved
by lead editor.
· Up to 3 rounds of feedback on drafts
may be provided, as necessary. This may extend timeline in
some cases.
· Upon approval, audience testing of
pilot conducted for 1 week (Fan/audience feedback)
OTG
How Ring's Neighbors app is making home security a social thing - CNET
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 17:43
A few Neighbors posts from my neighborhood, which included an alleged package theft (upper left) and alleged Halloween candy pilfering (lower right).
Ring and CNET Thumbing through the Neighbors app on my phone, I get the feeling that my quiet New Jersey suburb isn't so safe.
There are videos of folks appearing to walk up to front doors and stealing packages. Another video shows an alleged vandalism of an outside light, and yet another is of an attempted car break-in. There's the lighter stuff, too, like kids stealing whole bowls of Halloween candy -- yes, including the bowl itself -- and a handful of fox sightings.
Neighbors is an app launched by Ring, Amazon's smart-doorbell company. It's free to download and use, and lets people share, view and comment on crime and security information in their communities. Most of the posts are video clips shot by Ring video doorbells and security cameras.
Ring CEO Jamie Siminoff said in an interview last month that he sees Neighbors as a major part of his company's development, using the app to help more people work together to reduce crime in their communities. The app, which launched in the US in May, has over a million active users sharing information on alleged crimes and suspicious behavior, Siminoff said.
"We're seeing it become a foundation," Siminoff said. "It enhances everything we do in the company."
Siminoff and Eric Kuhn, Neighbor's general manager, spoke to CNET to show off some of Neighbors early results, saying it's quickly becoming one of the biggest aggregators of crime and safety data in the country.
Now playing: Watch this: Ring creates a digital neighborhood watch with Neighbors...
1:34
There's been a proliferation of security tools -- including Neighbors and Vivint's similar Streety app -- being created for the connected home. All these new apps, Wi-Fi-enabled security cameras, video doorbells and window sensors could reduce crime and help more consumers get access to home security services without paying monthly subscriptions. New data created by these tools could be used to help police solve crimes and prevent lawless activity before it even happens.
Yet with tech giants already well established in the home security market -- Google owns Nest, Amazon owns Ring and Blink -- consumers will have to weigh how much more personal data they're willing to share with these companies. Plus, if neighborhoods become blanketed with cameras, it could create a Big Brother scenario with everyone monitoring each other.
Google's Nest declined to comment for this story.
"I think that social aspect is where we might go in the next year or two for the connected home and home security," IHS Markit analyst Blake Kozak said, "because it can increase awareness."
A gateway to the smart homeApps like Neighbors have the potential to bring smart-home tech to many more houses by convincing more people to buy video doorbells and connected security cameras, Kozak said. But, he added, Ring needs to continue building up Neighbors' features to ensure it's not seen as merely a marketing tool for Ring products.
During the interview, Siminoff and Kuhn disclosed for the first time that 23 percent of information shared on Neighbors is suspicious behavior, 20 percent is alleged crimes and 15 percent is safety issues like wild animals and public emergencies. The rest of the posts contain other stuff, like solicitors or strangers on people's property.
Now playing: Watch this: Nest Hello video doorbell: Smarter than your average...
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Ring, which Amazon bought in April for a reported $1 billion, declined to say how many employees are working directly on Neighbors. But, Siminoff said, "it's a large division at Ring. It's not a small investment."
The concept for the new app came from Ring workers seeing people sharing their Ring videos via email links, Facebook and Twitter. A Ring employee suggested creating a place for sharing videos on Ring's app, so the company did just that in September last year.
Siminoff said that feature grew quickly and had more impact than the company expected, resulting in Ring launching Neighbors as a standalone app on iOS and Android in May. Millions of people are now sharing safety information through both the Ring and Neighbors apps.
Neighborhood watchPointing to the early benefits of Neighbors, Siminoff and Kuhn said there was a spike in activity on the app when the Hill Fire and Woolsey Fire hit Southern California last month. People were able to ask about specific streets and share safety tips. While users typically get two to five alerts per week, post and comment volume surged over 1,000 percent in the affected areas, the company said.
"We had 30,000, if you will, camera reporters in the field able to report how things were where they were," Siminoff said. "It is hyper, hyper, hyper local."
Kuhn said he had to be evacuated and was able to use Neighbors to know what was happening around his home.
Ring employees review every Neighbors post before it publishes to ensure it's accurate and is related to crime and safety issues to avoid off-topic "noise" on the platform, Kuhn said. As the app gains more users, he said, the company will look into using more automation to moderate posts.
The company partnered with dozens of local police departments, including Miami-Dade and Orlando, to help authorities use Neighbors as another crime-reporting and monitoring tool. Kuhn said the app has already helped solve crimes and directly resulted in some arrests.
All user posts are anonymous to the public, except those from Ring and police departments, and users can delete their posts whenever they want. Users' exact addresses are not shared in posts, with a radius on a map provided instead.
Neighbors, of course, isn't the only social app people can use to share this kind of information. Facebook community groups have become a major channel for posting local information. Other options include Twitter, Nextdoor and Vivint's Streety app.
There's also Citizen, a neighborhood watch app that was first banned by Apple when it encouraged people to try stopping crimes on their own and was first called Vigilante. Nest allows its users to share home security videos, but doesn't provide a social app like Neighbors.
Ring is looking to make Neighbors stand out by maintaining a tight focus on crime and safety, as opposed to Facebook or Nextdoor, which allow users to share local restaurant recommendations, community calendar news and items for sale.
"It's giving people the ability to live a little bit better and a little bit happier and a little bit safer," Siminoff said.
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Amazon's helping police build a surveillance network with Ring doorbells - CNET
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 17:41
If you're walking in Bloomfield, New Jersey, there's a good chance you're being recorded. But it's not a corporate office or warehouse security camera capturing the footage -- it's likely a Ring doorbell made by Amazon.
While residential neighborhoods aren't usually lined with security cameras, the smart doorbell's popularity has essentially created private surveillance networks powered by Amazon and promoted by police departments.
Police departments across the country, from major cities like Houston to towns with fewer than 30,000 people, have offered free or discounted Ring doorbells to citizens, sometimes using taxpayer funds to pay for Amazon's products. While Ring owners are supposed to have a choice on providing police footage, in some giveaways, police require recipients to turn over footage when requested.
Ring said it would start cracking down on those strings attached.
"Ring customers are in control of their videos, when they decide to share them and whether or not they want to purchase a recording plan. Ring has donated devices to Neighbor's Law Enforcement partners for them to provide to members of their communities," Ring said in a statement. "Ring does not support programs that require recipients to subscribe to a recording plan or that footage from Ring devices be shared as a condition for receiving a donated device. We are actively working with partners to ensure this is reflected in their programs."
While more surveillance footage in neighborhoods could help police investigate crimes, the sheer number of cameras run by Amazon's Ring business raises questions about privacy involving both law enforcement and tech giants. You might recognize Amazon as a place to get cheap deals with one-day shipping, but critics have pointed out the retail giant's ventures with law enforcement, like offering facial recognition tools.
Every area of town we have, there are some Ring cameras.Captain Vincent Kerney, detective bureau commander, Bloomfield Police Department
But those cameras benefit several groups: Police can gather more video footage, while Amazon can charge new Ring owners up to $3 a month for subscription fees on the smart doorbells. Residents, meanwhile, get some peace of mind, particularly with the Neighbors app , essentially a social network sharing camera feeds.
"Our township is now entirely covered by cameras," said Captain Vincent Kerney, detective bureau commander of the Bloomfield Police Department. "Every area of town we have, there are some Ring cameras."
Bloomfield's police department did not receive any free cameras from Ring, but the camera was already popular in the town of roughly 50,000 people.
More than 50 local police departments across the US have partnered with Ring over the last two years, lauding how the Amazon-owned product allows them to access security footage in areas that typically don't have cameras -- on suburban doorsteps.
But privacy advocates argue this partnership gives law enforcement an unprecedented amount of surveillance.
"What we have here is a perfect marriage between law enforcement and one of the world's biggest companies creating conditions for a society that few people would want to be a part of," said Mohammad Tajsar, staff attorney at the ACLU of Southern California.
Ring also referred to this blog post on how it handles privacy concerns with police partnerships.
"Our customers and Neighbors app users place their trust in us to help protect their homes and communities and we take that responsibility incredibly seriously," the company said.
How Neighbors worksAmazon bought Ring in 2018 for a reported $1 billion, and the maker of smart doorbells and security cameras helped expand the retail giant's smart homes push.
That happened amid a surging consumer interest in newly internet-connected devices, from lightbulbs and TVs to security cameras. Outside of Amazon, companies like Nest , which Google bought for $3.2 billion in 2014, also offer security cameras for homes. Strategy Analytics expected more than 3.4 million video doorbells would be sold in 2018.
Ring had been courting local police departments even before Amazon acquired it. Police are mostly interested in Ring's Neighbors app, a free download that serves as a place where people can share, view and comment on crime information in their neighborhood, as well as upload video clips from Ring doorbells. Then police court the public to buy Ring.
"We're encouraging residents of Mountain Brook to purchase that type of technology and work with the app," said Ted Cook, the police chief in Mountain Brook, Alabama. "We see it as trying to create a digital neighborhood watch."
When police partner with Ring, they have access to a law enforcement dashboard, where they can geofence areas and request footage filmed at specific times. Law enforcement can only get footage from the app if residents choose to send it. Otherwise, police need to subpoena Ring.
Police said the app has helped them solve crimes since residents usually send in footage of thieves on their steps stealing packages, or a suspicious car driving through the neighborhood.
The Neighbors app allows people to post videos and crime alerts. Police can request Ring footage through this app.
Amazon/Ring Those residents can feel more secure becaue the program offers a direct line to police.
"Someone who is investing in this Ring is obviously concerned about their safety and their property," said Eric Piza, an associate professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. "It seems like a fair trade-off. They are probably perfectly fine with police being able to look at the street view outside their house."
Despite its benefits, the relationship between police departments and Ring raises concerns about surveillance and privacy, as Amazon is working with law enforcement to blanket communities with cameras.
Ring has had its own privacy concerns. The Information reported last December that workers in Ukraine watched videos on its public app without customers knowing. In a statement to TechCrunch following the report, the company said, "we take the privacy and security of our customers' personal information extremely seriously."
"Essentially, we're creating a culture where everybody is the nosy neighbor looking out the window with their binoculars," said Dave Maass, a senior investigative researcher at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. "It is creating this giant pool of data that allows the government to analyze our every move, whether or not a crime is being committed."
Put a Ring on itOn a heat map of Bloomfield, there are hardly any spots in the New Jersey township out of sight of a Ring camera.
The smart doorbells were already popular within the community, Kerney said, and it made sense to partner with Ring for the law enforcement dashboard. Now, on top of those cameras being on seemingly every block, police could request footage from residents just from a tap on a phone.
A heat map of Bloomfield showing that Ring cameras are everywhere in the New Jersey town. The closer it is to red, the more cameras there are.
Bloomfield Police It's a massive jump from how much surveillance footage the Bloomfield police department had access to before Ring came into town.
Kerney said he had started a volunteer surveillance registration in 2017. Any place that had security cameras could sign up and provide footage to police.
There were about 442 places that registered, Kerney recalled. It was mostly businesses, since many private homes didn't have security cameras then. But it's a drop in the bucket compared with the network Ring has.
"There's probably 10 times as many Ring cameras as we have anything else," he said.
Part of the massive adoption is due to how popular products like Ring and Google's Nest have made surveillance systems. They're not just for businesses anymore: The market for smart home security cameras is expected to surpass $9.7 billion by 2023.
"Generally, most people don't have big-time surveillance systems in their home," Kerney said. "But something simple like Ring, where you just plug it in? People will go for that."
Police departments are piggybacking on Ring's network to build out their surveillance networks.
In Hampton, Virginia, police received 15 free Ring cameras after partnering with the company in March. The police department is still figuring out what neighborhoods they're going to distribute those cameras to.
Part of that includes working with the crime analysis unit to determine which blocks could use these cameras the most, said Ashley Jenrette, a Hampton police public information officer.
Paying the priceRing helps police avoid roadblocks for surveillance technology, whether a lack of funding or the public's concerns about privacy.
"If the police department had to go and create a plan of where it was going to put all the cameras in the neighborhood, how much it was going to cost, and take it to the city council, maybe there would be some debate," the EFF's Maass said. "There's a reason we push for ordinances that require police department seek city council approval before they acquire any surveillance technology."
Multiple cities have laws requiring a public process to debate how police use and buy surveillance technology. Community activists fight back against tools like facial recognition and automated license plate readers.
But when police and Amazon convince private residents to buy these cameras, it's essentially circumventing that process while saving the city money. Ring cameras can cost between $99 and $500.
"We don't have security cameras citywide," Cook said. "Essentially, this has the ability of creating security camera technology citywide. We're asking citizens to participate, to purchase it on their own."
Some police departments do more than just ask. Police in Indiana, New Jersey, California and other states have offered discounts for Ring cameras, sometimes up to $125. In some cases, those discounts come from taxpayer money.
"Part of the problem is that the public is financially subsidizing invasions of their own privacy in their communities when they do this," Tajsar said.
In April, the city of Hammond, Indiana, announced it had $37,500 in funds to subsidize Ring devices -- half of which came from Ring. The other $18,750 came from the city, said Steve Kellogg, Hammond police's public information officer.
The city had 500 cameras, and in about a week, they were all sold. The city government ran more discounted programs, Kellogg said, putting out more than 600 Ring cameras in the city.
"There will be more cameras on the streets," Kellogg said. "It's really a no-brainer."
Other cities will do giveaways, either in raffles or as rewards for crime tips, as the Southern California city of El Monte did.
Police across the country have been giving away Ring doorbells or subsidizing them at a heavy discount.
Chris Monroe/CNET While police need to ask for permission to get footage, a giveaway in Houston ensured that law enforcement would get any videos it needed. In its giveaway post last March, Houston police wrote in its requirements that winners would agree to give Houston police access to the cameras when it's requested.
"This model is the most disturbing because they're basically commandeering people's homes as surveillance outposts for law enforcement," Tajsar said.
Houston police didn't respond to requests for comment. Ring said that it doesn't support this model and that it was reaching out to police partners to make sure this wasn't a requirement for Ring giveaways.
It's unlikely that police departments will run out of cameras. In several cities, for every 20 people who sign up for the app, Ring donates one camera. It's why some police departments have been pushing for more residents to sign up.
Police promoting the cameras also helps Amazon's profits. Even when Ring is giving the cameras away for free or providing subsidies, it quickly finds a return on its investment.
You don't have to have a Ring subscription, but it's the only way you can store footage recorded from the camera. The cheapest plan starts at $3 a month. Even when Amazon donated $18,750 to Hammond's subsidy program, it could make all of that back in less than a year with 600 new subscriptions.
"As policing becomes more technology-driven, we have this new issue of police acting in the interest of commercial enterprises," Piza said.
Combining techEven though Bloomfield is peppered with Ring cameras, people haven't been flooding police with footage from their doorbells, Kerney said.
He's sent about 10 requests in the last two weeks, tied to thefts, burglaries and stolen cars, but most of them have gone unanswered, the detective bureau commander said.
When people in the Neighbors app aren't being responsive, police will take to the streets and start knocking on doors asking for footage in person. People are a lot more cooperative when an officer is at their doorsteps asking for Ring footage, he said. Civil advocates argue that people don't really have a choice.
"You change how you drive when you see a cop driving next to you. What if a cop shows up at your door and asks you for something?" Tajsar said. "Even if you're the biggest civil libertarian, you will feel compelled to turn that footage over."
And Ring isn't limited to Amazon's own technology, more tech-savvy police departments have found.
While Ring faced backlash last December when it was considering facial recognition for the doorbell cameras, police are capable of using the footage provided by residents with their own algorithms.
You change how you drive when you see a cop driving next to you. What if a cop shows up at your door and asks you for something?Mohammad Tajsar, staff attorney for ACLU of Southern California
Depending on how the Ring camera is set up, it can capture motion on the streets, like cars passing by. Kellogg noted that Hammond uses automated license plate readers and could use footage from Ring cameras to track down vehicles.
Police can enter details on a car captured in Ring footage, search in the license plate reader system, and figure out the car's owner and address, he added.
"That's something that's unheard of," Kellogg said. "With Ring now picking up any motion in vehicles, maybe we won't catch someone ringing the doorbell, but if it drives by, Ring turns on and captures that vehicle."
Residents may not be aware of that when they turn the footage over. The requests for Ring videos often come in the Neighbors app just asking for evidence related to reported incidents, with no details on what the clips will be used for.
"If the public are going to share this footage with the police, they need to know what it's going to be used for," Maass said.Originally published at 5:00 a.m. PT.
Updated at 7:55 a.m. PT: Adds further statements from Ring.
Google Cloud US outage takes down Snapchat, YouTube, and Gmail - Business Insider
Sun, 02 Jun 2019 21:43
Tech Enterprise Science advertising Media Transportation Chevron iconIt indicates an expandable section or menu, or sometimes previous / next navigation options. Finance Markets Insider Retail Your Money Chevron iconIt indicates an expandable section or menu, or sometimes previous / next navigation options. Politics Military & Defense News Chevron iconIt indicates an expandable section or menu, or sometimes previous / next navigation options. Strategy Careers Chevron iconIt indicates an expandable section or menu, or sometimes previous / next navigation options. Life Entertainment Travel Sports Chevron iconIt indicates an expandable section or menu, or sometimes previous / next navigation options. All Coupons Target Walmart EBay Nike Container Store BUSINESS INSIDER BI PRIME SIGN OUT BI INTELLIGENCE World globeAn icon of the world globe, indicating different international options."
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Business Insider logoThe words "Business Insider". * Copyright (C) 2019 Insider Inc. All rights reserved. Registration on or use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Terms of Service , Privacy Policy and Cookies Policy . Sitemap Disclaimer Commerce Policy Coupons Made in NYC Stock quotes by finanzen.net Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian at Google Cloud Next 2019 Google On Sunday, sites that use Google Cloud services experienced interruptions during what the company says was a larger network issue.Google services like Gmail, Google Drive, and YouTube were impacted as well as Snapchat, Nest, and Discord, all of which use Google Cloud.Google's cloud monitoring site indicated the issue began around 12:25 p.m. PST on Sunday and is impacting large portions of the United States and parts of Europe. At 12:59 p.m. PST, Google reported the outage was related to a larger network issue.Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. YouTube, Snapchat, Gmail, Nest, Discord, and several other web sites were experiencing service interruptions on Sunday due to a larger network issue with Google Cloud services.
According to Google's cloud monitoring dashboard, the issues began around 12:25 p.m. PST Sunday and were found to be related to a larger network issue by 12:59 p.m. PST.
The outage is widespread across the United States and parts of Europe. Much of Google's suite of services is affected, including Gmail, Google Drive, Nest, and YouTube. Other websites like Snapchat and Discord were experiencing interruptions, likely because they also use Google Cloud services.
Google did not respond to Business Insider's request for comment.
This story is developing.
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Parents just as addicted to their smartphones as their kids
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 19:57
By Quentin Fottrell, Marketwatch
May 31, 2019 | 12:50pm | Updated May 31, 2019 | 1:27pm
Swipe as I do, not as I say.
That could be the mantra of parents who teach their children how much time to spend on their iPhones Androids, tablets, computers and watching television.
More than one-third of teenagers and over one-quarter of parents wake up and check their mobile device for something other than the time at least once a night, according to a new report by Common Sense Media, a San Francisco-based organization that examines the impact of technology and media on families. The organization surveyed 1,000 parents and their children.
''There is no respite from the glow of the screen and the day's stress and social pressures,'' Common Sense Media CEO and founder James Steyer said in a statement. Parents and kids said mobile devices were affecting family life, said their families sometimes fought over mobile devices and reported that mobile devices were encroaching into mealtimes.
''With studies linking poor sleep to a number of mental and physical health problems, as well as diminished academic and cognitive performance,'' Steyer added, ''I urge parents to consider these findings as a wake-up call that device use might truly impact the health of their children and themselves.''
Here are some key takeaways:
39 percent of teenagers wish their parents would get off their device, up from 28 percent in 2016.45 percent of parents say they feel addicted to their mobile device, up from 27 percent in 2016.38 percent of teens feel their parent is addicted to their mobile device, up from 28 percent in 2016.52 percent of parents say they spend too much time on their devices up from 29 percent in 2016.Most parents (55 percent) and children (72 percent) in the survey say that the use of mobile devices has had no impact on their relationships with each other, but almost one-third of parents think that their child's use of a mobile device has hurt their relationship with their child (28 percent).
And all of that swiping is expensive: iPhone users spend nearly $33 per transaction on their iPhones versus just over $11.50 spent by mobile shoppers with their Android phone, according to an E-Commerce Benchmark KPI study.
It's hard to get kids not to do something if their parents do it all the time. Role-modeling is a great start to promoting a healthy digital lifestyle and parents can help establish good habits through family rituals like device-free dinners and media activities that strengthen relationships, experts say.
Of course, smartphones have their uses. Children use social media to connect with friends and develop their identities, Yalda Uhls, a Los Angeles-based child psychologist and author of ''Media Moms & Digital Dads: A Fact Not Fear Approach to Parenting in the Digital Age.''
Netherlands police lost access to tracking bracelets due to incorrect software update '' HACKER NEWS
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 03:29
As a precautionary measure, the police arrested carriers of electronic bracelets in high-risk groups. An incorrect firmware update disabled hundreds of electronic tracking bracelets used by the Dutch police, and as a result, law enforcement officers were unable to access the monitoring system.
The incident occurred on May 9 of this year. According to the Ministry of Justice and Security of the Netherlands (Ministerie van Justitie en Veiligheid), the update violated the transfer of data from the devices to the control centers, which prevented law enforcement officers from tracking the location of suspects under house arrest and those released on bail.
As a preventive measure, many ''carriers'' of electronic bracelets that are at high risk were arrested and put in prison. The victims of the crimes and their relatives were also notified about the failure of the monitoring system.
The authorities managed to solve the problem on the same day. The ministry did not disclose information on the number of bracelets that affected the incident. According to data for 2017, about 700 people in the country wore electronic tracking bracelets.
.Securitylab.ru
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An update on Sunday's service disruption | Google Cloud Blog
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 10:57
Yesterday, a disruption in Google's network in parts of the United States caused slow performance and elevated error rates on several Google services, including Google Cloud Platform, YouTube, Gmail, Google Drive and others. Because the disruption reduced regional network capacity, the worldwide user impact varied widely. For most Google users there was little or no visible change to their services'--search queries might have been a fraction of a second slower than usual for a few minutes but soon returned to normal, their Gmail continued to operate without a hiccup, and so on. However, for users who rely on services homed in the affected regions, the impact was substantial, particularly for services like YouTube or Google Cloud Storage which use large amounts of network bandwidth to operate.
For everyone who was affected by yesterday's incident, I apologize. It's our mission to make Google's services available to everyone around the world, and when we fall short of that goal'--as we did yesterday'--we take it very seriously. The rest of this document explains briefly what happened, and what we're going to do about it.
Incident, Detection and ResponseIn essence, the root cause of Sunday's disruption was a configuration change that was intended for a small number of servers in a single region. The configuration was incorrectly applied to a larger number of servers across several neighboring regions, and it caused those regions to stop using more than half of their available network capacity. The network traffic to/from those regions then tried to fit into the remaining network capacity, but it did not. The network became congested, and our networking systems correctly triaged the traffic overload and dropped larger, less latency-sensitive traffic in order to preserve smaller latency-sensitive traffic flows, much as urgent packages may be couriered by bicycle through even the worst traffic jam.
Google's engineering teams detected the issue within seconds, but diagnosis and correction took far longer than our target of a few minutes. Once alerted, engineering teams quickly identified the cause of the network congestion, but the same network congestion which was creating service degradation also slowed the engineering teams' ability to restore the correct configurations, prolonging the outage. The Google teams were keenly aware that every minute which passed represented another minute of user impact, and brought on additional help to parallelize restoration efforts.
ImpactOverall, YouTube measured a 2.5% drop of views for one hour, while Google Cloud Storage measured a 30% reduction in traffic. Approximately 1% of active Gmail users had problems with their account; while that is a small fraction of users, it still represents millions of users who couldn't receive or send email. As Gmail users ourselves, we know how disruptive losing an essential tool can be! Finally, low-bandwidth services like Google Search recorded only a short-lived increase in latency as they switched to serving from unaffected regions, then returned to normal.
Next StepsWith all services restored to normal operation, Google's engineering teams are now conducting a thorough post-mortem to ensure we understand all the contributing factors to both the network capacity loss and the slow restoration. We will then have a focused engineering sprint to ensure we have not only fixed the direct cause of the problem, but also guarded against the entire class of issues illustrated by this event.
Final ThoughtsWe know that people around the world rely on Google's services, and over the years have come to expect Google to always work. We take that expectation very seriously'--it is our mission, and our inspiration. When we fall short, as happened Sunday, it motivates us to learn as much as we can, and to make Google's services even better, even faster, and even more reliable.
Google pinpoints root cause of Sunday's outage | FierceTelecom
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 10:56
True to its word, Google provided an update on the root cause for Sunday's large network outage, which it pinned on a server configuration change.
Sunday's outage, which started on the East Coast and lasted more than four hours, impacted social media companies, such as Snapchat, that rely on Google Cloud as well as Google's own services, including YouTube, Gmail, Google Search, G Suite, Google Drive, Nest, and Google Docs.
Benjamin Treynor Sloss, Google's vice president of engineering, explained in a blog post that the configuration change was intended for a small number of servers in a single region.
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RELATED: Sunday's Google Cloud outage impacted Gmail, YouTube, Snapchat, with global ripple effects
"The configuration was incorrectly applied to a larger number of servers across several neighboring regions, and it caused those regions to stop using more than half of their available network capacity," according to Treynor Sloss. "The network traffic to/from those regions then tried to fit into the remaining network capacity, but it did not. The network became congested, and our networking systems correctly triaged the traffic overload and dropped larger, less latency-sensitive traffic in order to preserve smaller latency-sensitive traffic flows, much as urgent packages may be couriered by bicycle through even the worst traffic jam."
While users of the services that fall into the "less latency-sensitive traffic" may not be too pleased with the reasoning for being dropped, Google did make mention of providing information for service level agreements (SLAs) in a Sunday post on its Google Cloud status dashboard. Treynor Sloss didn't provide any additional SLA information in his blog on Monday.
Treynor Sloss said that Google's engineering teams detected the issue within seconds, "but diagnosis and correction took far longer than our target of a few minutes." Google's efforts to fix the issue were hamstrung by the very same network congestion.
"Once alerted, engineering teams quickly identified the cause of the network congestion, but the same network congestion which was creating service degradation also slowed the engineering teams' ability to restore the correct configurations, prolonging the outage," according to Treynor Sloss. "The Google teams were keenly aware that every minute which passed represented another minute of user impact, and brought on additional help to parallelize restoration efforts."
Google services that require high-bandwidth include YouTube's videos, while Google Search, for example, only saw a short increase in latency.
"Overall, YouTube measured a 10% drop in global views during the incident, while Google Cloud Storage measured a 30% reduction in traffic," according to Treynor Sloss. "Approximately 1% of active Gmail users had problems with their account; while that is a small fraction of users, it still represents millions of users who couldn't receive or send email. As Gmail users ourselves, we know how disruptive losing an essential tool can be! Finally, low-bandwidth services like Google Search recorded only a short-lived increase in latency as they switched to serving from unaffected regions, then returned to normal."
Treynor Sloss said that Google's engineering teams were conducting a through post-mortem of the outage "to ensure we understand all the contributing factors to both the network capacity loss and the slow restoration.nWe will then have a focused engineering sprint to ensure we have not only fixed the direct cause of the problem, but also guarded against the entire class of issues illustrated by this event," he said.
He apologized for the network outage in his blog post, and said that Google would learn from its mistakes going forward. For Google Cloud customers, the big takeaway should be not to have all of your cloud services centralized with one provider.
Privacywaakhond AP blundert met cc-knop | Computable.nl
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 11:09
De Autoriteit Persoonsgegevens (AP) veroorzaakte vrijdag 24 mei zelf een datalek. Een woordvoerder zette in een email naar journalisten, redacties en relaties 38 geadresseerden in het cc-veld. Daardoor kon iedere ontvanger zien wie het mailtje nog meer had gekregen (zie kader). Hoe gaat de privacytoezichthouder zelf om met zo'n incident?
Volgens AP is er in het eigen geval met de cc-knop sprake van een datalek. De interne procedures zijn gevolgd, maar of het incident officieel gemeld moet worden bij de AP is nog in overweging. De woordvoerder licht toe: 'We hebben uiteraard een procedure voor beveiligingsincidenten. Het incident moet eerst zo spoedig mogelijk intern gemeld worden - afdelingshoofd, directeur, beveiligingsambtenaar, functionaris gegevensbescherming - zodat is te beoordelen of er sprake is van een datalek dat ook gemeld moet worden bij de AP.'
Bij het publiceren van dit artikel is daar nog geen besluit over genomen, legt de woordvoerder uit. In die motivatie speelt bijvoorbeeld de omvang van het aantal gelekte mailadressen mee en is ook de inhoud van de gegevens van belang, licht ze toe, verwijzend naar de richtlijnen van de meldplicht datalekken waarin het onbedoeld of ongegrond delen van namen van geadresseerden in cc wordt beoordeeld als een datalek.
De woordvoerder: 'De volgende vraag is of een datalek ook bij de AP gemeld moet worden. Dat is afhankelijk van de (potentile) impact van het datalek op de bescherming van persoonsgegevens en de persoonlijke levenssfeer van betrokkenen. Het datalek moet worden gemeld als het leidt tot een risico voor de rechten en vrijheden van betrokkenen. Als er geen gevoelige gegevens zijn onthuld en als er slechts een klein aantal e-mailadressen is onthuld, hoeft een datalek niet altijd gemeld te worden.'
Cc-knop
Vrijdagochtend 24 mei jl verstuurt AP om 7.25 uur een mail naar 38 journalisten, redacties en relaties om hen te wijzen op een persbericht met de titel: 'Wat betekent de privacywet voor jou(w bedrijf)'. In het cc-veld staan 38 e-mailadressen.De woordvoerder merkt kennelijk vrij snel dat er iets is misgegaan of wordt daarop gewezen. Om 7.46 volgt een nieuwe mail met een verzoek: 'Zojuist gepubliceerd: Start campagne 'Wat betekent de privacywet voor jou(w bedrijf)?' intrekken.'
Om 10.22 uur volgt nog een email: 'Ik heb vanochtend in een onoplettend moment per abuis een persbericht verstuurd naar een aantal e-mailadressen in de cc ipv de bcc. Ik heb daarna de e-mail ingetrokken, maar mogelijkerwijs zijn alle e-mailadressen toch zichtbaar geweest voor alle of een deel van de adressanten. De fout is uiteraard gelijk intern gemeld en zal volgens de geldende procedures worden opgepakt. Mijn welgemeende excuses.'
'Datelek hoeft niet altijd extern gemeld te worden'Het is dus afhankelijk van de omvang van het gelekte aantal mailadressen en de inhoud van het bericht of het incident ook bij de autoriteit gemeld moet worden.
Incidenten met de cc-knop worden vaker gemeld bij de dienst. De woordvoerder: 'In de meeste gevallen betreft het datalek het versturen of afgeven van persoonsgegevens aan een verkeerde ontvanger. Hierbij gaat het met name om poststukken met gevoelige gegevens die bij de verkeerde persoon terechtkomen en geopend retour worden gestuurd (de onjuiste ontvanger heeft kennis genomen van de inhoud van de brief). Ook kan het gaan om een mail met daarin gevoelige persoonsgegevens die wordt verzonden naar de verkeerde ontvanger. Bijvoorbeeld door een typefout of omdat er in het mailprogramma een verkeerde geadresseerde wordt geselecteerd.'
Ze vervolgt: 'In het algemeen geldt: als iedereen toestemming heeft gegeven of als alle adressanten elkaar kennen en elkaars e-mailadressen kennen. De inbreuk op privacy is dan minimaal. Gebruik van cc moet wel een doel dienen. In een werkomgeving kan het functioneel zijn bijvoorbeeld omdat je elkaars reactie ziet.'
RisicoOrganisaties bepalen dus grotendeels zelf op basis van welke motivatie ze besluiten om een datalek via de cc-knop wel of niet te melden bij de AP. Volgens de woordvoerder loopt een organisatie die niets meldt altijd het risico dat (C)(C)n van de ontvangers zich meldt bij de autoriteit. Ze verwacht dat het onder de pet houden van incidenten zich uiteindelijk tegen organisaties zal keren en boetes zullen volgens als achteraf blijkt dat ze op onrechtmatige gronden een incident hebben verzwegen.
Het blijft voor de dienst lastig om in algemene zin aan te geven wanneer een dergelijk incident moet worden gemeld. Het hangt van specifieke details af, meldt de woordvoerder. Zo wordt bij incidenten met persoonlijke mailadressen de gevolgen voor de privacy van de persoon vaak zwaarder gewogen dan bij zakelijke mailadressen.
De woordvoerder over het eigen datalek met de cc-knop: 'In dit specifieke geval gaat het om een verwijzing naar een algemeen persbericht op onze openbare website. Het gaat dus niet om bijvoorbeeld de salarisgegevens van onze medewerkers. Dat zou het ook weer anders maken. Maar ik kan mezelf natuurlijk wel voor mijn kop slaan voor het aanvinken van die cc-knop.'
UPDATE: AP meldt datalek bij AP
De woordvoerder laat maandagmiddag 27 mei 2019 om 15.11 uur weten dat het datalek officieel is gemeld bij de Autoriteit Persoonsgegevens. 'Hoewel het risico voor de betrokkenen gering is, hebben we als AP er wel voor gekozen om het datalek te melden bij de AP. Wat hierbij een rol heeft gespeeld is dat een deel van de e-mailadressen tot de persoon herleidbaar is. En dat we als AP zo transparant mogelijk willen zijn als het gaat om onze eigen beveiligingsincidenten.'
Watchdog says FBI has access to about 640M photographs
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 15:06
WASHINGTON (AP) '-- A government watchdog says the FBI has access to about 640 million photographs '-- including from driver's licenses, passports and mugshots '-- that can be searched using facial recognition technology.
The figure reflects how the technology is becoming an increasingly powerful law enforcement tool, but is also stirring fears about the potential for authorities to intrude on the lives of Americans. It was reported by the Government Accountability Office at a congressional hearing in which both Democrats and Republicans raised questions about the use of the technology.
The FBI maintains a database known as the Interstate Photo System of mugshots that can help federal, state and local law enforcement officials. It contains about 36 million photographs, according to Gretta Goodwin of the GAO.
But taking into account the bureau contracts providing access to driver's licenses in 21 states, and its use of photos and other databases, the FBI has access to about 640 million photographs, Goodwin told lawmakers at the House oversight committee hearing.
Kimberly Del Greco, a deputy assistant director at the FBI, said the bureau has strict policies for using facial recognition. She said it is used only when there is an active FBI investigation or an assessment, which can precede a formal investigation. When using the state databases, the FBI submits a so-called ''probe photo'' and then states conduct a search to yield a list of potential candidates to be reviewed by trained federal agents.
''Facial recognition is a tool that, if used properly, can greatly enhance law enforcement capabilities and protect public safety,'' she said.
Dozens of civil liberties advocates asked lawmakers this week to implement a temporary, federal moratorium on the facial recognition technology.
''Lawmakers must put the brakes on law enforcement use of this technology until Congress decides what, if any, use cases are permissible,'' said Neema Singh Guliani, senior legislative counsel with the American Civil Liberties Union.
"Minority Report" Moment Arrives: Amazon, Facebook Reading Human Emotions | Zero Hedge
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 15:10
Authored by Aaron Kesel via ActivistPost.com,
Facebook and Amazon's insanity only seems to continue with no sign of slowing down anytime soon. Now, the two big conglomerate giants want to move into the uncharted territory of reading human emotions, both in their own ways.
Facebook wants a robot that has five senses which can read human emotions. Facebook wants ''emotionally sensitive'' robots that can explore the world, identify objects and people and enable its users to make more friends, Dailymail reported.
The robots would be fitted with wheels or tank-like caterpillar treads that would allow them to trundle about their environment.
Alternatively, such robots could be fitted out with drive systems that would allow them to move around underwater, fly through the air or float in space, Facebook suggest in their patent.
I am not sure why anyone would trust Facebook with data ever again, let alone biometric data, after all the numerous scandals Activist Post has documented including data mining. But to each their own I guess.
Amazon is also looking into reading human emotions in a completely different way by utilizing a voice-activated wearable device, that will sense its wearer's state of mind by the tone of voice, Bloomberg reported.
It's worth noting that both companies have a smart home device, and after reading this you should fear what information is being gathered by the cameras and microphones attached to those electronics '... besides the typically targeted advertising to turn consumers into the product.
On the Amazon front, it seems more than likely the company will want to use this technology in a variety of different digital gadgets, ranging from personal assistants such as Alexa to new technologies that the retail giant is currently developing. Amazon has announced it's developing a personal assistance robot, so the new emotional technology could easily be integrated into this at-home robot as a means to ''serve the consumer better.'' A horrifically terrifying thought indeed.
Amazon and Facebook aren't the only companies looking into utilizing human emotions. Previously, Activist Post reported that Walmart was also looking into to monitoring your biometric data, pulse, and location from the sensors on a shopping cart handle.
This news comes as hundreds of retail stores '-- and soon thousands '-- are investigating using biometric facial recognition software FaceFirst to build a database of shoplifters to aid in the fight against theft, Activist Post reported.
FaceFirst is designed to scan faces as far as 50 to 100 feet away. As customers walk through a store entrance, the video camera captures repetitious images of each shopper and chooses the clearest one to store. The software then analyzes that image and compares it to a database of ''bad customers'' that the retailer has compiled; if there is a match, the software sends an alert to store employees that a ''high risk'' customer has entered the door.
The future of shopping seems to allude to having biometric scanners written all over it, a worrying prospect for privacy enthusiasts.
Several privacy advocate groups, attorneys, and even recently Microsoft, which also markets its own facial recognition system, have all raised concerns over the technology, pointing to issues of consent, racial profiling, and the potential to use images gathered through facial recognition cameras as evidence of criminal guilt by law enforcement.
''We don't want to live in a world where government bureaucrats can enter in your name into a database and get a record of where you've been and what your financial, political, sexual, and medical associations and activities are,'' Jay Stanley, an attorney with ACLU, told BuzzFeed News about the use of facial recognition cameras in retail stores.
''And we don't want a world in which people are being stopped and hassled by authorities because they bear resemblance to some scary character.''
However, facial recognition technology currently has a lot of problems. Activist Post has also reported how Amazon's own facial ''Rekognition'' software erroneously and hilariously identified 28 members of Congress as people who have been arrested for crimes.
Activist Post previously reported on another test of facial recognition technology in Britain which resulted in 35 false matches and 1 erroneous arrest. We have further reported recently on a watchdog observing UK Metropolitan Police trials. Big Brother Watch stated the technology has misidentified members of the public, including a 14-year-old black child in a school uniform who was stopped and fingerprinted by police, as potential criminals in as much as 96 percent of scans.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the pond in the U.S, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) has stated the facial recognition technology the FBI is using for the Next Generation Identification-Interstate Photo System failed privacy and accuracy tests, as Activist Post reported.
In 2018 it was reported that the FBI and other law enforcement agencies were using this same Amazon Facial Rekognition technology to sift through surveillance data.
Defense One reports that ''AI-Enabled Cameras That Detect Crime Before it Occurs Will Soon Invade the Physical World'' are in the works and on display at ISC West, a recent security technology conference in Las Vegas.
Activist Post has previously reported in its own way that the rise of facial recognition technology is inevitable and, as a result, the death of one's privacy is sure to come with it.
The fact that hundreds of retail stores want facial recognition technology is a scary thought. But combined with biometric data, that's an even scarier prospect for our future in regards to the cart that can read a human's emotional data including detecting stress.
While Amazon's wearable device will be able to be used to target consumers, maybe not at first but eventually the technology pitched as ''health and wellness'' will be surely be used for advertising when connected to other Amazon products.
Increasingly our rights are decreasing with the help of big corporations like Amazon, Facebook, and Walmart. Our privacy is disappearing at an alarming rate in trade for convenience.
As previously written, ''we are entering the Minority Report; there is no going back after this technology is public and citizens are indoctrinated that it's 'for their safety.'''
At that point, we are officially trading liberty and privacy for security. As Benjamin Franklin said, ''Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.''
* * *
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Armageddon
Austin Rule changes
This
came from an Air Force buddy who is a Police Officer in Austin. Please withhold
any info about us.
“The city council, now occupied
by a majority socialist vote after the last election is going to decriminalize
offenses committed by the homeless.
Essentally, unless the homeless person commits a felony or violent crime they
will not be arrested or even ticketed. They will be given a court date and a
pamphlet of assistance options.
The article states that the homeless don't show up for their court date. That's
true. But what it does not mention is that the city council six years ago
banned arrest and mandated tickets only for homeless crimes. Essentailly, they
created the problem. there are homeless that have hundreds of unresolved
tickets. (putting people in jail costs money)
The story is also not quite accurate. They mention only a few of the offenses
under question, this is going to apply to ALL city ordinanaces and state C and
B misdemeanors. Shoplifting and Criminal Trespass for example.
If you live or have a business in Austin and ESPECIALLY if you send your kids
to UT, get out while you still can.
This is going to be called a great success since it's going to lower crime
stats about %50. Roughly half of all crime in Austin is homeless related. In
some sections, almost %100. It's not going to lower CALL volume however.”
Homeless Professional Explains
Hi John & Adam - you guys are the best and I never miss
a show, please keep it up.
I wanted to drop a note with my small value for value
contribution. I am a LCSW (licensed clinical social worker) who has
worked in homeless service provision going on 10 years now. For the first
9, I was in New York City, and the last year I have been working in
Sacramento. This week, my team went to San Francisco for a training, and
although I was looking for poop piles, I was instead awestruck by the fact that
walking down the street, number of people who appeared to be “experiencing
homelessness” (yes Adam – that is the precious way we say it) noticeably
outweighed those who were not. Walking down the street, it truly felt
like there were more homeless people than not homeless people. I am not
totally familiar with SF so I recognize that it could have been the particular
street/neighborhood (around Market/6th?) but still it was very
striking. Even after doing many years of front line street outreach in
NYC in varying levels of responsibility (all the way from social work intern up
to program director), I have never felt so struck by the condition, and I can't
pinpoint why the east coast seems to have it so much more dialed in than out
here. I'm not saying it's perfect in NY and I know I sure bitched about
it while I was there, but coming out here sheds a whole new troublesome light
on it. I know there is plenty of funding for services in such a liberal
state as CA, but I don't know where it is really going - I now sit in meetings
where the conversation is should we have another “task force” to study the
“task force” that’s already studying the problem. I would like to believe
that the policy makers here are smart people who would have studied models that
are working more efficiently (i.e. east coast), and I don’t understand what the
disconnect is. When I left NYC in 2018, I think the at last homeless
count there were something like 2000 street homeless people in all of New York
City, and there are 3500 in Sacramento. That’s insane when you compare
the size/population. Granted there are 60k people in the NYC shelter
system, but at least they are indoors and receiving various services around
physical & mental health, substance use, and employment training.
Here in Sacramento, we have nowhere to put people who are on the street and
want to come in side. I know things like “Seattle is Dying” highlight
substance use (and my colleagues at Sac PD feel that we are headed that way and
that Sac will look similar in two years) and lack of empowering law enforcement
as the problem, and it just may be. However, I hear people (particularly
our females) say all the time that they use meth in order to stay awake all
night so they don’t get robbed, beat up, or raped while living on the street at
night, and that they started using drugs when they became homeless as opposed
to being homeless due to a drug problem. Also, I can't count the number
of times we find someone who became homeless after missing a few rent payments
and getting evicted, and then they are living in their car with their minor
children. In NYC, the shelter system would be a safety net for that kind
of thing, and in fact it would be illegal to have kids sleeping in cars or on
the street. Here in Sac, we see homeless minors in cars with parents
often. And we have nowhere to put them as the one family shelter has a
waiting list a mile long. So while it is a complicated problem, I do
believe that we really just need more safe places to put people transitionally
so that we can do the work helping them get clean and connected to health care
and employment. Maybe the beat up term "affordable housing"
isn't the answer, but transitional/shelter placements are imperative for folks
to make the step from street to permanent home successfully, in my
experience. When it comes down to it, the policy makers and larger
community just don’t want shelters in their neighborhood. They act
concerned but don’t want to see that shit when they go home.
Anyway this is just an anecdote of my experience and I hope
you continue to discuss homelessness on the show. Also I hope there is a
Sac or Bay Area meet up on the books soon so I can go and talk your ears off
more about this, as if my email wasn't long enough.
NA Tech News
Apple WWDC19 Presentation
Keynote
WWDC19 Podfather Picture displayed prominently
Cook voice
Watch behaviour
Dark mode
Memojis makeup
Photos machine learning by year
A lot of women presenting
Mac pro a big fuck you project
Apple's top spec Mac Pro will likely cost at least $35,000 - The Verge
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 14:55
Apple announced today that its new Mac Pro starts at an already pricey $6,000, but the company neglected to mention how much the top-of-the-line model will cost. So we shopped around for equivalent parts to the top-end spec that Apple's promising. As it turns out: $33,720.88 is likely the bare minimum '-- and that's before factoring in the four GPUs, which could easily jack that price up to around $45,000.
For all that dough, big-budget video editors and other creative types get a lot of firepower: a 28-core Intel Xeon W processor, an almost-impossible-to-comprehend 1.5TB of RAM, 4TB of SSD storage, and four AMD Radeon Pro Vega II Duo GPUs '-- assuming you can afford one.
Add in a Pro Display XDR monitor (and a Pro Stand to go with it), and you're looking at a workstation that could clear $50,000. Keep in mind too that these estimates are based on market prices for these (or similar) parts: Apple historically has charged far more for its pre-built configurations than for a computer you'd build on your own.
Here's how it all breaks down.
One (1) Mac Pro: $6,000We start with the base Mac Pro itself, which we know Apple is selling starting at $6,000 for the base model. Because you can't just buy an enclosure on its own, this price also includes things like the motherboard, power supply, heat sink, cooling system, and chassis (the optional wheels may cost extra). It'll probably also come with a CPU, a GPU, and some RAM, but we'll be replacing those shortly anyhow.
Twelve (12) 128GB DDR4 ECC RAM sticks: $17,867.88The easiest thing on our shopping list is RAM. The new Mac Pro has 12 user-accessible DIMM slots that take DDR4 ECC memory. For the maximum of 1.5TB of RAM, we need 12 128GB sticks of RAM; at roughly $1,388.99 each, that rings up to a whopping $17,867.88 for memory. But just imagine: with $18K of RAM, you might even be able to keep three whole Chrome tabs open at once!
Two (2) 2TB SSDs: $2,400This one's easy: Apple charges $2,400 to upgrade its iMac Pro to 4TB of storage, so we can extrapolate that it'll probably charge the same to upgrade the Mac Pro to the same. It's not clear whether this storage is user upgradable or not (especially considering that it's encrypted by Apple's T2 chip, which implies some hardware level integration on Apple's end), so we'll take Apple's far pricier number as the minimum here for now.
One (1) 2.5GHz 28-core Intel Xeon W processor: approximately $7,453Next up: we need the best CPU we can get: in this case, a 2.5GHz, 28-core Intel Xeon W processor that can Turbo Boost up to 4.4GHz, with a 66.5MB cache and support for up to 2TB 2933MHz memory. Now, Apple doesn't specify what 28-core Xeon processor it'll be shipping with the Mac Pro, but looking at Intel's product database, the closest option out there is the Intel Xeon W-3275M, which the company lists a recommended customer price for of $7,453, which we'll assume to be the bare minimum here. Now Apple's processor probably isn't the W-3275M (Apple lists a much higher cache size, to start), but the rest of the specs are pretty close.
Two (2) AMD Radeon Pro Vega II GPUs: Price unknown, but let's say $12,000, minimum Here's the tricky bit. AMD announced its Radeon Pro Vega II GPUs alongside the Mac Pro, which means we've got no idea how much it'll cost to buy them. We also don't know if you'll even be able to buy them separately at all; depending on how Apple's MDX Module system works, that might not be an option.
Apple will sell you up to four Vega GPUs in total: Two Vega II Duo cards, each with two GPUs, linked together with Apple's Infinity Fabric Link across two of Apple's MDX Modules. Whatever the grand total is there, it won't come cheap.
Assuming AMD prices the Vega II similarly to Nvidia's professional grade Quadro RTX offerings, though '-- the Quadro RTX 6000, for instance, cost $6,300 new with only a little more raw compute than Apple's promising here '-- we'll say Apple's solution will cost at least $12,000 for the whole quad-GPU package. Add the MDX Modules and Apple's markup, though, and we wouldn't be totally surprised if it was double that.
One (1) Apple Afterburner accelerator card: price unknownTechnically this is an optional accessory, but it comes from Apple so I'm including it here. No idea how much it'll cost, though.
One (1) Apple Pro Display XDR monitor: $5,000Apple announced the Pro Display XDR monitor alongside the new Mac Pro. Sure, you could use a cheaper (and lesser display), but the Pro Display XDR was designed specifically to pair with the Mac Pro, so you'll probably want to pick one up. Or six. It supports six.
One (1) Apple Pro Stand for the Pro Display XDR monitor: $1,000Stand sold separately.
One (1) Apple Magic Keyboard and one (1) Magic Trackpad 2: $228You probably should buy a mouse and keyboard, too. Apple currently sells these separately on the existing Mac Pro, so I doubt they'll start giving them away for free now.
Facebook investors vote to fire Mark Zuckerberg as chairman - Business Insider
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 14:30
Independent Facebook investors voted overwhelmingly in support of proposals to fire Mark Zuckerberg as chairman and scrap the firm's share structure.According to the results of votes at Facebook's annual shareholder meeting last week, 68% of outside investors want the company to hire an independent chairman. The majority was up from 51% last year.Despite the revolt, the proposals did not pass because of Zuckerberg's voting control of the stock, which means he can swat away shareholder demands."Arrogance is not a substitute for good corporate governance," said Michael Connor, who helped coordinate action among activist Facebook investors.Visit BusinessInsider.com for more stories. The Facebook shareholder revolt just got bloody.
In a filing on Monday, Facebook revealed how investors voted on a raft of proposals at its annual shareholder meeting last week '-- and the results underline the unrest among outside investors.
According to an analysis of the results by Open Mic '-- an organization that works with activist shareholders to improve corporate governance at America's biggest companies '-- independent shareholders overwhelmingly backed two proposals to weaken Mark Zuckerberg's power.
Some 68% of ordinary investors, those who are not part of management or the board, want to oust Zuckerberg as chairman and bring in an independent figure to chair Facebook's board. This was a significant increase on the 51% who voted in favor of an almost identical proposal last year.
Shareholders are furious at the way Zuckerberg has handled a series of Facebook scandals, including election interference on the social network in 2016 and the giant Cambridge Analytica data breach last year. They think the company would benefit from an independent chairman holding Zuckerberg and his top team accountable.
Facebook's share price fell dramatically last year following the Cambridge Analytica disaster, while weaker than expected growth compounded the downturn. The stock has not fully recovered after hitting a high of $217.50 on July 25 last year. Shares plunged 7.5% to $164.15 on Monday following news of a potential antitrust investigation.
Furthermore, 83.2% of outside shareholders also backed a proposal to scrap Facebook's dual-class share structure. Currently, Class A shareholders have one vote per share, while Class B shareholders get 10 votes per share. Management and directors control Class B shares.
Read more: 'It is unwise to have so much power concentrated in one person': Here's the stinging message that will be read to Mark Zuckerberg on Thursday by an investor who wants to take him down
In fact, Zuckerberg happens to own more than 75% of Class B stock, meaning he has roughly 60% of the voting power at Facebook. He and colleagues voted down the independent chairman proposal and the dual-class share plans, meaning they were crushed despite the uprising from outside investors. Put another way, if Zuckerberg and his closest allies disagree with shareholders, they always have the trump card.
In a statement sent to Business Insider, Open Mic's executive director Michael Connor said the results send a clear message to Facebook management. "The results speak for themselves. Mark Zuckerberg and the Facebook board need to listen to the company's shareholders. Arrogance is not a substitute for good corporate governance," he said.
"Investors are clearly concerned and want change," added Jonas Kron, who runs activist shareholder Trillium Asset Management, which put forward the call for an independent chairman. "This level of support is rarely seen in shareholder proposals."
Business Insider has contacted Facebook for comment.
More: Facebook Mark Zuckerberg
Antitrust Troubles Snowball for Tech Giants as Lawmakers Join In - The New York Times
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 04:08
Image The Justice Department will oversee antitrust complaints about Apple while the Federal Trade Commission will take on Facebook. Credit Credit Tom Brenner for The New York Times WASHINGTON '-- The federal government is stepping up its scrutiny of the world's biggest tech companies, leaving them vulnerable to new rules and federal lawsuits. Regulators are divvying up antitrust oversight of the Silicon Valley giants and lawmakers are investigating whether they have stifled competition and hurt consumers.
After a spate of unusual negotiations, the Justice Department has agreed to handle potential antitrust investigations related to Apple and Google, while the Federal Trade Commission will take on Facebook and Amazon.
Lawmakers in the House said on Monday that they were looking into the tech giants' possible anti-competitive behavior. That could lead to the first overhaul of antitrust rules in many decades, an effort to keep up with an industry that didn't exist when antitrust laws were written.
The question of whether tech companies violate antitrust laws has long been the subject of academic debates and industry griping. But now the industry is in the sights of President Trump, Democrats running for president, Congress and consumers. Silicon Valley has faced fierce criticism over disinformation, privacy breaches and political bias.
Investors pummeled technology stocks on Monday. Shares of Facebook fell more than 7 percent. Google and Amazon shares were also sharply lower, and Apple's stock fell about 1 percent.
It does not appear that the agencies have opened official investigations. But the scrutiny from Washington could lead to years of headaches for the companies, raising the prospect of lawsuits to break up companies, hefty fines or new laws limiting their reach.
''This is about how do we get competition back in this space,'' Representative David Cicilline, Democrat of Rhode Island, said Monday at a news conference. Mr. Cicilline is the chairman of the House Judiciary's subcommittee on antitrust, which during the next 18 months plans a set of hearings, testimony from executives from top companies, as well as subpoenas for internal corporate documents.
Mr. Cicilline said the investigation would focus on major digital platforms. The House committee on Monday informed four tech companies, Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon, of the plans. If the House investigation finds wrongdoing, lawmakers will pressure the Justice Department or the F.T.C. to investigate, he said.
''This is long overdue,'' he said.
The F.T.C. and Justice Department declined to publicly comment Monday. All four companies also declined to comment, though they have rebutted accusations of anticompetitive behavior in the past.
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A few weeks ago, the Justice Department and the F.T.C. began negotiations over dividing up the responsibilities for overseeing competition in the tech sector, according to several people close to the discussions.
The two agencies often split responsibilities for reviewing mergers. But the recent negotiations show that both agencies were keen on looking into the companies, and that they had probably received complaints from rivals and others.
Two people close to President Trump said White House officials were supportive of the agencies' steps toward greater antitrust oversight over tech companies.
But the people, who would speak only on the condition of anonymity, insisted there was no direct pressure on the agencies or involvement from Mr. Trump or any top West Wing officials. The officials attributed the moves to Mr. Trump's appointees at the agencies.
One of the officials said antitrust issues had not recently been a focus of the president, and had not come up in Oval Office meetings with his economic advisers.
Mr. Trump's lack of involvement could be good news for the potential investigations: After he publicly opposed the AT&T-Time Warner merger, AT&T tried to use his comments in the case as a defense, saying the Justice Department was carrying out a political agenda.
''Big tech plays a huge role in our economy and our world,'' Representative Doug Collins, a Republican of Georgia and ranking member of the Judiciary Committee, said in a statement about the House investigation. ''As tech has expanded its market share, more and more questions have arisen about whether the market remains competitive.''
It could be years before regulators take action or Congress passes new antitrust laws. Some consumer groups have called for regulators to break up the companies, and Chris Hughes, a Facebook co-founder, has said the company must be broken up in order to solve its problems. But most lawmakers and global regulators have stopped short of supporting the breakup of any tech company.
Talk of antitrust is suddenly fashionable, but efforts by the government to break up companies have been rare, time-consuming and not always successful.
The government's case against IBM went on for 13 years before being dropped. The pursuit of AT&T lasted a decade until the company was broken into the seven Baby Bells. The government chased Microsoft for 12 years, from the first F.T.C. investigation until a settlement was approved by an appeals court.
One reason for the slow pace: If you're big enough to be drawing antitrust heat, you're big enough to have a lot of lobbyists, lawyers and employees in congressional districts all around the country.
Image ''This is about how do we get competition back in this space,'' Representative David Cicilline, Democrat of Rhode Island, said on Monday. Credit Gabriella Demczuk for The New York Times In recent decades, a reinterpretation of traditional antitrust theory created a major barrier to regulatory action.
Robert Bork, a former federal judge and conservative legal theorist, argued in his 1978 book, ''The Antitrust Paradox,'' that if the government protected weaker competitors, it would make businesses less efficient, raising prices for consumers.
His consumer welfare standard '-- all that counts is what happens in the consumer's wallet '-- has been widely used by courts, including the Supreme Court.
This interpretation of antitrust helps big tech companies. It is difficult to argue that consumers are being robbed '-- the argument made by the Senate for passing the original antitrust laws more than a century ago '-- when companies like Google and Facebook do not charge users. Amazon prides itself on charging low prices.
''Federal enforcers have a lot of catching up to do,'' said Sarah Miller, the deputy director of the Open Markets Institute, a nonprofit that is critical of the giant tech companies.
The antitrust law in Europe is more receptive to the recent complaints about large tech companies, and critics of the businesses have pursued actions there.
European regulators fined Google 1.5 billion euros this year for antitrust violations in the online advertising market. It was the third antitrust move against the company by European officials in three years.
European regulators have expressed concerns about Apple's dominance in music. In March, Spotify, the music streaming service, filed a competition complaint with European regulators about how Apple controlled its app store. Spotify accused Apple of unfairly charging fees to its competitors and imposing burdensome rules about marketing.
Apple has argued that the fees are reasonable given that it operates the App Store. It argues that the App Store also gives Spotify and other companies access to millions of potential customers.
Ms. Miller said she wasn't holding her breath that the new government steps would change the American approach.
''Time will tell if this announcement leads to meaningful action,'' she said.
Follow Cecilia Kang on Twitter: @ceciliakang.
Cecilia Kang and Annie Karni reported from Washington, and David Streitfeld from San Francisco. Ben Sisario contributed reporting from New York.
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Tech Titans Face Tough Scrutiny From All Sides
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DACA
Text of H.R. 2820: Dream Act of 2019 (Reported by House Committee version) - GovTrack.us
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 11:44
1.This Act may be cited as the Dream Act of 2019 .
I 101. (a)Notwithstanding any other provision of law, and except as provided in section 103(c)(2), an alien shall be considered, at the time of obtaining the status of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence under this section, to have obtained such status on a conditional basis subject to the provisions of this Act.
(b) (1)Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary or the Attorney General shall cancel the removal of, and adjust to the status of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence on a conditional basis, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2), an alien who is inadmissible or deportable from the United States (or is under a grant of Deferred Enforced Departure or has temporary protected status under section 244 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1254a )) if'--
(A)the alien has been continuously physically present in the United States since the date that is 4 years before the date of the enactment of this Act;
(B)the alien was younger than 18 years of age on the date on which the alien entered the United States and has continuously resided in the United States since such entry;
(C)the alien'--
(i)subject to section 203(d), is not inadmissible under paragraph (1), (6)(E), (6)(G), (8), or (10) of section 212(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a) );
(ii)has not ordered, incited, assisted, or otherwise participated in the persecution of any person on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion; and
(iii)is not barred from adjustment of status under this Act based on the criminal and national security grounds described under subsection (c), subject to the provisions of such subsection; and
(D)the alien'--
(i)has been admitted to an institution of higher education;
(ii)has been admitted to an area career and technical education school at the postsecondary level;
(iii)in the United States, has obtained'--
(I)a high school diploma or a commensurate alternative award from a public or private high school;
(II)a General Education Development credential, a high school equivalency diploma recognized under State law, or another similar State-authorized credential;
(III)a credential or certificate from an area career and technical education school at the secondary level; or
(IV)a recognized postsecondary credential; or
(iv)is enrolled in secondary school or in an education program assisting students in'--
(I)obtaining a high school diploma or its recognized equivalent under State law;
(II)passing the General Education Development test, a high school equivalence diploma examination, or other similar State-authorized exam;
(III)obtaining a certificate or credential from an area career and technical education school providing education at the secondary level; or
(IV)obtaining a recognized postsecondary credential.
(2) (A)The Secretary may, subject to an exemption under section 203(c), require an alien applying under this section to pay a reasonable fee that is commensurate with the cost of processing the application but does not exceed $495.00.
(B)The Secretary shall establish a streamlined procedure for aliens who have been granted DACA and who meet the requirements for renewal (under the terms of the program in effect on January 1, 2017) to apply for cancellation of removal and adjustment of status to that of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence on a conditional basis under this section, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2). Such procedure shall not include a requirement that the applicant pay a fee, except that the Secretary may require an applicant who meets the requirements for lawful permanent residence without the conditional basis under section 103(c)(2) to pay a fee that is commensurate with the cost of processing the application, subject to the exemption under section 203(c).
(3)The Secretary may not grant an alien permanent resident status on a conditional basis under this section until the requirements of section 202 are satisfied.
(4)An alien applying for permanent resident status on a conditional basis under this section, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2), shall establish that the alien has registered under the Military Selective Service Act (50 U.S.C. 3801 et seq.), if the alien is subject to registration under such Act.
(c) (1)Except as provided in paragraph (2), an alien is ineligible for adjustment of status under this Act (whether on a conditional basis or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)) if any of the following apply:
(A)The alien is inadmissible under paragraph (2) or (3) of section 212(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a) ).
(B)Excluding any offense under State law for which an essential element is the alien's immigration status, and any minor traffic offense, the alien has been convicted of'--
(i)any felony offense;
(ii)3 or more misdemeanor offenses (excluding simple possession of cannabis or cannabis-related paraphernalia, any offense involving cannabis or cannabis-related paraphernalia which is no longer prosecutable in the State in which the conviction was entered, and any offense involving civil disobedience without violence) not occurring on the same date, and not arising out of the same act, omission, or scheme of misconduct; or
(iii)a misdemeanor offense of domestic violence, unless the alien demonstrates that such crime is related to the alien having been'--
(I)a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, child abuse or neglect, abuse or neglect in later life, or human trafficking;
(II)battered or subjected to extreme cruelty; or
(III)a victim of criminal activity described in section 101(a)(15)(U)(iii) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(U)(iii) ).
(2)For humanitarian purposes, family unity, or if otherwise in the public interest, the Secretary may'--
(A)waive the grounds of inadmissibility under subparagraphs (A), (C), and (D) of section 212(a)(2) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(2) ), unless the conviction forming the basis for inadmissibility would otherwise render the alien ineligible under paragraph (1)(B) (subject to subparagraph (B)); and
(B)for purposes of clauses (ii) and (iii) of paragraph (1)(B), waive consideration of'--
(i)one misdemeanor offense if the alien has not been convicted of any offense in the 5-year period preceding the date on which the alien applies for adjustment of status under this Act; or
(ii)up to two misdemeanor offenses if the alien has not been convicted of any offense in the 10-year period preceding the date on which the alien applies for adjustment of status under this Act.
(3) (A)Notwithstanding an alien's eligibility for adjustment of status under this Act, and subject to the procedures described in this paragraph, the Secretary of Homeland Security may, as a matter of non-delegable discretion, provisionally deny an application for adjustment of status (whether on a conditional basis or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)) if the Secretary, based on clear and convincing evidence, which shall include credible law enforcement information, determines that the alien is described in subparagraph (B) or (D).
(B)An alien is described in this subparagraph if'--
(i)excluding simple possession of cannabis or cannabis-related paraphernalia, any offense involving cannabis or cannabis-related paraphernalia which is no longer prosecutable in the State in which the conviction was entered, any offense under State law for which an essential element is the alien's immigration status, any offense involving civil disobedience without violence, and any minor traffic offense, the alien'--
(I)has been convicted of a misdemeanor offense punishable by a term of imprisonment of more than 30 days; or
(II)has been adjudicated delinquent in a State or local juvenile court proceeding that resulted in a disposition ordering placement in a secure facility; and
(ii)the alien poses a significant and continuing threat to public safety related to such conviction or adjudication.
(C)For purposes of subparagraph (B)(ii), the Secretary shall consider the recency of the conviction or adjudication; the length of any imposed sentence or placement; the nature and seriousness of the conviction or adjudication, including whether the elements of the offense include the unlawful possession or use of a deadly weapon to commit an offense or other conduct intended to cause serious bodily injury; and any mitigating factors pertaining to the alien's role in the commission of the offense.
(D)An alien is described in this subparagraph if the alien has, within the 5 years immediately preceding the date of the application, knowingly, willfully, and voluntarily participated in offenses committed by a criminal street gang (as described in subsections (a) and (c) of section 521 of title 18, United States Code) with the intent to promote or further the commission of such offenses.
(E)For purposes of subparagraph (D), allegations of gang membership obtained from a State or Federal in-house or local database, or a network of databases used for the purpose of recording and sharing activities of alleged gang members across law enforcement agencies, shall not establish the participation described in such paragraph.
(F) (i)Prior to rendering a discretionary decision under this paragraph, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall provide written notice of the intent to provisionally deny the application to the alien (or the alien's counsel of record, if any) by certified mail and, if an electronic mail address is provided, by electronic mail (or other form of electronic communication). Such notice shall'--
(I)articulate with specificity all grounds for the preliminary determination, including the evidence relied upon to support the determination; and
(II)provide the alien with not less than 90 days to respond.
(ii)Not more than 30 days after the issuance of the notice under clause (i), the Secretary of Homeland Security shall provide a second written notice that meets the requirements of such clause.
(iii)Notwithstanding any other provision of law, if an applicant provides good cause for not contesting a provisional denial under this paragraph, including a failure to receive notice as required under this subparagraph, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall, upon a motion filed by the alien, reopen an application for adjustment of status under this Act and allow the applicant an opportunity to respond, consistent with clause (i)(II).
(G)An alien is entitled to judicial review of the Secretary's decision to provisionally deny an application under this paragraph in accordance with the procedures described in section 206(c).
(4)For purposes of this subsection'--
(A)the term felony offense means an offense under Federal or State law that is punishable by a maximum term of imprisonment of more than 1 year;
(B)the term misdemeanor offense means an offense under Federal or State law that is punishable by a term of imprisonment of more than 5 days but not more than 1 year;
(C)the term crime of domestic violence means any offense that has as an element the use, attempted use, or threatened use of physical force against a person committed by a current or former spouse of the person, by an individual with whom the person shares a child in common, by an individual who is cohabiting with or has cohabited with the person as a spouse, by an individual similarly situated to a spouse of the person under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction where the offense occurs, or by any other individual against a person who is protected from that individual's acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the United States or any State, Indian tribal government, or unit of local government; and
(D)the term convicted or conviction does not include a judgment that has been expunged or set aside, that resulted in a rehabilitative disposition, or the equivalent.
(d)An alien who is under 18 years of age and meets the requirements under subparagraphs (A), (B), and (C) of subsection (b)(1) shall be provided a reasonable opportunity to meet the educational requirements under subparagraph (D) of such subsection. The Attorney General or the Secretary may not commence or continue with removal proceedings against such an alien.
(e)The Secretary of Homeland Security shall, upon receipt of a request to withdraw an application for adjustment of status under this section, cease processing of the application, and close the case. Withdrawal of the application under this subsection shall not prejudice any future application filed by the applicant for any immigration benefit under this Act or under the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.).
102. (a)Permanent resident status on a conditional basis is'--
(1)valid for a period of 10 years, unless such period is extended by the Secretary; and
(2)subject to revocation under subsection (c).
(b)At the time an alien obtains permanent resident status on a conditional basis, the Secretary shall provide notice to the alien regarding the provisions of this Act and the requirements to have the conditional basis of such status removed.
(c)The Secretary may revoke the permanent resident status on a conditional basis of an alien only if the Secretary'--
(1)determines that the alien ceases to meet the requirements under section 101(b)(1)(C); and
(2)prior to the revocation, provides the alien'--
(A)notice of the proposed revocation; and
(B)the opportunity for a hearing to provide evidence that the alien meets such requirements or otherwise to contest the proposed revocation.
(d)An alien whose permanent resident status on a conditional basis expires under subsection (a)(1) or is revoked under subsection (c), shall return to the immigration status that the alien had immediately before receiving permanent resident status on a conditional basis.
103. (a) (1)Subject to paragraph (2), the Secretary shall remove the conditional basis of an alien's permanent resident status granted under this Act and grant the alien status as an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence if the alien'--
(A)is described in section 101(b)(1)(C);
(B)has not abandoned the alien's residence in the United States during the period in which the alien has permanent resident status on a conditional basis; and
(C) (i)has obtained a degree from an institution of higher education, or has completed at least 2 years, in good standing, of a program in the United States leading to a bachelor's degree or higher degree or a recognized postsecondary credential from an area career and technical education school providing education at the postsecondary level;
(ii)has served in the Uniformed Services for at least 2 years and, if discharged, received an honorable discharge; or
(iii)demonstrates earned income for periods totaling at least 3 years and at least 75 percent of the time that the alien has had a valid employment authorization, except that, in the case of an alien who was enrolled in an institution of higher education, an area career and technical education school to obtain a recognized postsecondary credential, or an education program described in section 101(b)(1)(D)(iii), the Secretary shall reduce such total 3-year requirement by the total of such periods of enrollment.
(2)The Secretary shall remove the conditional basis of an alien's permanent resident status and grant the alien status as an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence if the alien'--
(A)satisfies the requirements under subparagraphs (A) and (B) of paragraph (1);
(B)demonstrates compelling circumstances for the inability to satisfy the requirements under subparagraph (C) of such paragraph; and
(C)demonstrates that'--
(i)the alien has a disability;
(ii)the alien is a full-time caregiver; or
(iii)the removal of the alien from the United States would result in hardship to the alien or the alien's spouse, parent, or child who is a national of the United States or is lawfully admitted for permanent residence.
(3) (A)Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the conditional basis of an alien's permanent resident status granted under this Act may not be removed unless the alien demonstrates that the alien satisfies the requirements under section 312(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1423(a) ).
(B)Subparagraph (A) shall not apply to an alien who is unable to meet the requirements under such section 312(a) due to disability.
(4)The Secretary may, subject to an exemption under section 203(c), require aliens applying for removal of the conditional basis of an alien's permanent resident status under this section to pay a reasonable fee that is commensurate with the cost of processing the application.
(5)The Secretary may not remove the conditional basis of an alien's permanent resident status until the requirements of section 202 are satisfied.
(b) (1)For purposes of title III of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1401 et seq.), an alien granted permanent resident status on a conditional basis shall be considered to have been admitted to the United States, and be present in the United States, as an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence.
(2)An alien may not apply for naturalization while the alien is in permanent resident status on a conditional basis.
(c) (1)An alien granted permanent resident status on a conditional basis under this Act may apply to have such conditional basis removed at any time after such alien has met the eligibility requirements set forth in subsection (a).
(2) (A)Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary or the Attorney General shall cancel the removal of, and adjust to the status of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent resident status without conditional basis, any alien who'--
(i)demonstrates eligibility for lawful permanent residence status on a conditional basis under section 101(b); and
(ii)subject to the exceptions described in subsections (a)(2) and (a)(3)(B) of this section, already has fulfilled the requirements of paragraphs (1) and (3) of subsection (a) of this section at the time such alien first submits an application for benefits under this Act.
(B)Subsection (a)(5) shall apply to an alien seeking lawful permanent resident status without conditional basis in an initial application in the same manner as it applies to an alien seeking removal of the conditional basis of an alien's permanent resident status. Section 101(b)(3) shall not be construed to require the Secretary to conduct more than one identical security or law enforcement background check on such an alien.
(C)In the case of an alien seeking lawful permanent resident status without conditional basis in an initial application, the alien shall pay the fee required under subsection (a)(4), subject to the exemption allowed under section 203(c), but shall not be required to pay the application fee under section 101(b)(2).
II 201.In this Act:
(1)Except as otherwise specifically provided, any term used in this Act that is used in the immigration laws shall have the meaning given such term in the immigration laws.
(2)The term appropriate United States district court mean the United States District Court for the District of Columbia or the United States district court with jurisdiction over the alien's principal place of residence.
(3)The term area career and technical education school has the meaning given such term in section 3 of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006 (20 U.S.C. 2302 ).
(4)The term DACA means deferred action granted to an alien pursuant to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy announced by the Secretary of Homeland Security on June 15, 2012.
(5)The term disability has the meaning given such term in section 3(1) of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 12102(1) ).
(6)The term Federal poverty line has the meaning given such term in section 213A(h) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1183a ).
(7)The terms high school and secondary school have the meanings given such terms in section 8101 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801 ).
(8)The term immigration laws has the meaning given such term in section 101(a)(17) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(17) ).
(9)The term institution of higher education'--
(A)except as provided in subparagraph (B), has the meaning given such term in section 102 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1002 ); and
(B)does not include an institution of higher education outside of the United States.
(10)The term recognized postsecondary credential has the meaning given such term in section 3 of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (29 U.S.C. 3102 ).
(11)Except as otherwise specifically provided, the term Secretary means the Secretary of Homeland Security.
(12)The term Uniformed Services has the meaning given the term uniformed services in section 101(a) of title 10, United States Code.
202. (a)The Secretary may not grant an alien adjustment of status under this Act, on either a conditional or permanent basis, unless the alien submits biometric and biographic data, in accordance with procedures established by the Secretary. The Secretary shall provide an alternative procedure for aliens who are unable to provide such biometric or biographic data because of a physical impairment.
(b)The Secretary shall use biometric, biographic, and other data that the Secretary determines appropriate to conduct security and law enforcement background checks and to determine whether there is any criminal, national security, or other factor that would render the alien ineligible for adjustment of status under this Act, on either a conditional or permanent basis. The status of an alien may not be adjusted, on either a conditional or permanent basis, unless security and law enforcement background checks are completed to the satisfaction of the Secretary.
203. (a)An alien who appears to be prima facie eligible for relief under this Act shall be given a reasonable opportunity to apply for such relief and may not be removed until, subject to section 206(c), a final decision establishing ineligibility for relief is rendered.
(b)An alien present in the United States who has been ordered removed or has been permitted to depart voluntarily from the United States may, notwithstanding such order or permission to depart, apply for adjustment of status under this Act. Such alien shall not be required to file a separate motion to reopen, reconsider, or vacate the order of removal. If the Secretary approves the application, the Secretary shall cancel the order of removal. If the Secretary renders a final administrative decision to deny the application, the order of removal or permission to depart shall be effective and enforceable to the same extent as if the application had not been made, only after all available administrative and judicial remedies have been exhausted.
(c)An applicant may be exempted from paying an application fee required under this Act if the applicant'--
(1)is younger than 18 years of age;
(2)received total income, during the 12-month period immediately preceding the date on which the applicant files an application under this Act, that is less than 150 percent of the Federal poverty line;
(3)is in foster care or otherwise lacks any parental or other familial support; or
(4)cannot care for himself or herself because of a serious, chronic disability.
(d)With respect to any benefit under this Act, and in addition to the waivers under section 101(c)(2), the Secretary may waive the grounds of inadmissibility under paragraph (1), (6)(E), (6)(G), or (10)(D) of section 212(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a) ) for humanitarian purposes, for family unity, or because the waiver is otherwise in the public interest.
(e)During the period beginning on the date on which an alien applies for adjustment of status under this Act and ending on the date on which the Secretary makes a final decision regarding such application, the alien shall be eligible to apply for advance parole. Section 101(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(g) ) shall not apply to an alien granted advance parole under this section.
(f)An alien whose removal is stayed pursuant to this Act, who may not be placed in removal proceedings pursuant to this Act, or who has pending an application under this Act, shall, upon application to the Secretary, be granted an employment authorization document.
204. (a)Any period of continuous physical presence or continuous residence in the United States of an alien who applies for permanent resident status under this Act (whether on a conditional basis or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)) shall not terminate when the alien is served a notice to appear under section 239(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1229(a) ).
(b) (1)Except as provided in paragraphs (2) and (3), an alien shall be considered to have failed to maintain'--
(A)continuous physical presence in the United States under this Act if the alien has departed from the United States for any period exceeding 90 days or for any periods, in the aggregate, exceeding 180 days; and
(B)continuous residence in the United States under this Act if the alien has departed from the United States for any period exceeding 180 days, unless the alien establishes to the satisfaction of the Secretary of Homeland Security that the alien did not in fact abandon residence in the United States during such period.
(2)The Secretary may extend the time periods described in paragraph (1) for an alien who demonstrates that the failure to timely return to the United States was due to extenuating circumstances beyond the alien's control, including the serious illness of the alien, or death or serious illness of a parent, grandparent, sibling, or child of the alien.
(3)Any period of travel outside of the United States by an alien that was authorized by the Secretary may not be counted toward any period of departure from the United States under paragraph (1).
(c)With respect to aliens who were removed or departed the United States on or after January 20, 2017, and who were continuously physically present in the United States for at least 4 years prior to such removal or departure, the Secretary may, as a matter of discretion, waive the physical presence requirement under section 101(b)(1)(A) for humanitarian purposes, for family unity, or because a waiver is otherwise in the public interest. The Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of State, shall establish a procedure for such aliens to apply for relief under section 101 from outside the United States if they would have been eligible for relief under such section, but for their removal or departure.
205.Nothing in this Act or in any other law may be construed to apply a numerical limitation on the number of aliens who may be granted permanent resident status under this Act (whether on a conditional basis, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)).
206. (a)Not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall provide to aliens who have applied for adjustment of status under this Act a process by which an applicant may seek administrative appellate review of a denial of an application for adjustment of status, or a revocation of such status.
(b)Except as provided in subsection (c), and notwithstanding any other provision of law, an alien may seek judicial review of a denial of an application for adjustment of status, or a revocation of such status, under this Act in an appropriate United States district court.
(c) (1)Notwithstanding any other provision of law, if, after notice and the opportunity to respond under section 101(c)(3)(E), the Secretary provisionally denies an application for adjustment of status under this Act, the alien shall have 60 days from the date of the Secretary's determination to seek review of such determination in an appropriate United States district court.
(2)Notwithstanding any other provision of law, review under paragraph (1) shall be de novo and based solely on the administrative record, except that the applicant shall be given the opportunity to supplement the administrative record and the Secretary shall be given the opportunity to rebut the evidence and arguments raised in such submission. Upon issuing its decision, the court shall remand the matter, with appropriate instructions, to the Department of Homeland Security to render a final decision on the application.
(3)Notwithstanding any other provision of law, an applicant seeking judicial review under paragraph (1) shall be represented by counsel. Upon the request of the applicant, counsel shall be appointed for the applicant, in accordance with procedures to be established by the Attorney General within 90 days of the date of the enactment of this Act, and shall be funded in accordance with fees collected and deposited in the Immigration Counsel Account under section 212.
(d) (1)Except as provided in paragraph (2), an alien seeking administrative or judicial review under this Act may not be removed from the United States until a final decision is rendered establishing that the alien is ineligible for adjustment of status under this Act.
(2)The Secretary may remove an alien described in paragraph (1) pending judicial review if such removal is based on criminal or national security grounds described in this Act. Such removal shall not affect the alien's right to judicial review under this Act. The Secretary shall promptly return a removed alien if a decision to deny an application for adjustment of status under this Act, or to revoke such status, is reversed.
207. (a)An alien's application for permanent resident status under this Act (whether on a conditional basis, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)) may include, as evidence of identity, the following:
(1)A passport or national identity document from the alien's country of origin that includes the alien's name and the alien's photograph or fingerprint.
(2)The alien's birth certificate and an identity card that includes the alien's name and photograph.
(3)A school identification card that includes the alien's name and photograph, and school records showing the alien's name and that the alien is or was enrolled at the school.
(4)A Uniformed Services identification card issued by the Department of Defense.
(5)Any immigration or other document issued by the United States Government bearing the alien's name and photograph.
(6)A State-issued identification card bearing the alien's name and photograph.
(7)Any other evidence determined to be credible by the Secretary.
(b)To establish that an alien was younger than 18 years of age on the date on which the alien entered the United States, and has continuously resided in the United States since such entry, as required under section 101(b)(1)(B), that an alien has been continuously physically present in the United States, as required under section 101(b)(1)(A), or that an alien has not abandoned residence in the United States, as required under section 103(a)(1)(B), the alien may submit the following forms of evidence:
(1)Passport entries, including admission stamps on the alien's passport.
(2)Any document from the Department of Justice or the Department of Homeland Security noting the alien's date of entry into the United States.
(3)Records from any educational institution the alien has attended in the United States.
(4)Employment records of the alien that include the employer's name and contact information, or other records demonstrating earned income.
(5)Records of service from the Uniformed Services.
(6)Official records from a religious entity confirming the alien's participation in a religious ceremony.
(7)A birth certificate for a child who was born in the United States.
(8)Hospital or medical records showing medical treatment or hospitalization, the name of the medical facility or physician, and the date of the treatment or hospitalization.
(9)Automobile license receipts or registration.
(10)Deeds, mortgages, or rental agreement contracts.
(11)Rent receipts or utility bills bearing the alien's name or the name of an immediate family member of the alien, and the alien's address.
(12)Tax receipts.
(13)Insurance policies.
(14)Remittance records, including copies of money order receipts sent in or out of the country.
(15)Travel records.
(16)Dated bank transactions.
(17)Two or more sworn affidavits from individuals who are not related to the alien who have direct knowledge of the alien's continuous physical presence in the United States, that contain'--
(A)the name, address, and telephone number of the affiant; and
(B)the nature and duration of the relationship between the affiant and the alien.
(18)Any other evidence determined to be credible by the Secretary.
(c)To establish that an alien has been admitted to an institution of higher education, the alien may submit to the Secretary a document from the institution of higher education certifying that the alien'--
(1)has been admitted to the institution; or
(2)is currently enrolled in the institution as a student.
(d)To establish that an alien has acquired a degree from an institution of higher education in the United States, the alien may submit to the Secretary a diploma or other document from the institution stating that the alien has received such a degree.
(e)To establish that in the United States an alien has earned a high school diploma or a commensurate alternative award from a public or private high school, has obtained the General Education Development credential, or otherwise has satisfied section 101(b)(1)(D)(iii), the alien may submit to the Secretary the following:
(1)A high school diploma, certificate of completion, or other alternate award.
(2)A high school equivalency diploma or certificate recognized under State law.
(3)Evidence that the alien passed a State-authorized exam, including the General Education Development test, in the United States.
(4)Evidence that the alien successfully completed an area career and technical education program, such as a certification, certificate, or similar alternate award.
(5)Evidence that the alien obtained a recognized postsecondary credential.
(6)Any other evidence determined to be credible by the Secretary.
(f)To establish that an alien is enrolled in any school or education program described in section 101(b)(1)(D)(iv) or 103(a)(1)(C), the alien may submit school records from the United States school that the alien is currently attending that include'--
(1)the name of the school; and
(2)the alien's name, periods of attendance, and current grade or educational level.
(g)To establish that an alien is exempt from an application fee under section 203(c), the alien may submit to the Secretary the following relevant documents:
(1)To establish that an alien meets an age requirement, the alien may provide proof of identity, as described in subsection (a), that establishes that the alien is younger than 18 years of age.
(2)To establish the alien's income, the alien may provide'--
(A)employment records or other records of earned income, including records that have been maintained by the Social Security Administration, the Internal Revenue Service, or any other Federal, State, or local government agency;
(B)bank records; or
(C)at least 2 sworn affidavits from individuals who are not related to the alien and who have direct knowledge of the alien's work and income that contain'--
(i)the name, address, and telephone number of the affiant; and
(ii)the nature and duration of the relationship between the affiant and the alien.
(3)To establish that the alien is in foster care, lacks parental or familial support, or has a serious, chronic disability, the alien may provide at least 2 sworn affidavits from individuals who are not related to the alien and who have direct knowledge of the circumstances that contain'--
(A)a statement that the alien is in foster care, otherwise lacks any parental or other familiar support, or has a serious, chronic disability, as appropriate;
(B)the name, address, and telephone number of the affiant; and
(C)the nature and duration of the relationship between the affiant and the alien.
(h)To establish that an alien satisfies one of the criteria for the hardship exemption set forth in section 103(a)(2)(C), the alien may submit to the Secretary at least 2 sworn affidavits from individuals who are not related to the alien and who have direct knowledge of the circumstances that warrant the exemption, that contain'--
(1)the name, address, and telephone number of the affiant; and
(2)the nature and duration of the relationship between the affiant and the alien.
(i)To establish that an alien has served in the Uniformed Services for at least 2 years and, if discharged, received an honorable discharge, the alien may submit to the Secretary'--
(1)a Department of Defense form DD''214;
(2)a National Guard Report of Separation and Record of Service form 22;
(3)personnel records for such service from the appropriate Uniformed Service; or
(4)health records from the appropriate Uniformed Service.
(j) (1)An alien may satisfy the earned income requirement under section 103(a)(1)(C)(iii) by submitting records that'--
(A)establish compliance with such requirement; and
(B)have been maintained by the Social Security Administration, the Internal Revenue Service, or any other Federal, State, or local government agency.
(2)An alien who is unable to submit the records described in paragraph (1) may satisfy the earned income requirement by submitting at least 2 types of reliable documents that provide evidence of employment or other forms of earned income, including'--
(A)bank records;
(B)business records;
(C)employer or contractor records;
(D)records of a labor union, day labor center, or organization that assists workers in employment;
(E)sworn affidavits from individuals who are not related to the alien and who have direct knowledge of the alien's work, that contain'--
(i)the name, address, and telephone number of the affiant; and
(ii)the nature and duration of the relationship between the affiant and the alien;
(F)remittance records; or
(G)any other evidence determined to be credible by the Secretary.
(k)If the Secretary determines, after publication in the Federal Register and an opportunity for public comment, that any document or class of documents does not reliably establish identity or that permanent resident status under this Act (whether on a conditional basis, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)) is being obtained fraudulently to an unacceptable degree, the Secretary may prohibit or restrict the use of such document or class of documents.
208. (a)Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall publish in the Federal Register interim final rules implementing this Act, which shall allow eligible individuals to immediately apply for relief under section 101 or 103(c)(2). Notwithstanding section 553 of title 5, United States Code, the regulation shall be effective, on an interim basis, immediately upon publication, but may be subject to change and revision after public notice and opportunity for a period of public comment. The Secretary shall finalize such rules not later than 180 days after the date of publication.
(b)The requirements under chapter 35 of title 44, United States Code, (commonly known as the Paperwork Reduction Act) shall not apply to any action to implement this Act.
209. (a)The Secretary may not disclose or use information (including information provided during administrative or judicial review) provided in applications filed under this Act or in requests for DACA for the purpose of immigration enforcement.
(b)The Secretary, based solely on information provided in an application for adjustment of status under this Act (including information provided during administrative or judicial review) or an application for DACA, may not refer an applicant to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, or any designee of either such entity.
(c)Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (b), information provided in an application for adjustment of status under this Act may be shared with Federal security and law enforcement agencies'--
(1)for assistance in the consideration of an application for adjustment of status under this Act;
(2)to identify or prevent fraudulent claims;
(3)for national security purposes; or
(4)for the investigation or prosecution of any felony offense not related to immigration status.
(d)Any person who knowingly uses, publishes, or permits information to be examined in violation of this section shall be fined not more than $10,000.
210. (a)The Secretary of Homeland Security shall establish, within U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, a program to award grants, on a competitive basis, to eligible nonprofit organizations that will use the funding to assist eligible applicants under this Act by providing them with the services described in subsection (b).
(b)Grant funds awarded under this section shall be used for the design and implementation of programs that provide'--
(1)information to the public regarding the eligibility and benefits of permanent resident status under this Act (whether on a conditional basis, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)), particularly to individuals potentially eligible for such status;
(2)assistance, within the scope of authorized practice of immigration law, to individuals submitting applications for adjustment of status under this Act (whether on a conditional basis, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)), including'--
(A)screening prospective applicants to assess their eligibility for such status;
(B)completing applications and petitions, including providing assistance in obtaining the requisite documents and supporting evidence; and
(C)providing any other assistance that the Secretary or grantee considers useful or necessary to apply for adjustment of status under this Act (whether on a conditional basis, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)); and
(3)assistance, within the scope of authorized practice of immigration law, and instruction, to individuals'--
(A)on the rights and responsibilities of United States citizenship;
(B)in civics and English as a second language;
(C)in preparation for the General Education Development test; and
(D)in applying for adjustment of status and United States citizenship.
(c) (1)There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary for each of the fiscal years 2020 through 2030 to carry out this section.
(2)Any amounts appropriated pursuant to paragraph (1) shall remain available until expended.
211.An alien's eligibility to be lawfully admitted for permanent residence under this Act (whether on a conditional basis, or without the conditional basis as provided in section 103(c)(2)) shall not preclude the alien from seeking any status under any other provision of law for which the alien may otherwise be eligible.
212. (a)Except as provided in section 202 and in cases where the applicant is exempt from paying a fee under section 203(c), in any case in which a fee is charged pursuant to this Act, an additional surcharge of $25 shall be imposed and collected for the purpose of providing appointed counsel to applicants seeking judicial review of the Secretary's decision to provisionally deny an application under section 206(c)(3).
(b)There is established in the general fund of the Treasury a separate account which shall be known as the Immigration Counsel Account. Fees collected under subsection (a) shall be deposited into the Immigration Counsel Account and shall to remain available until expended for purposes of providing appointed counsel as required under this Act.
(c)At the end of each 2-year period, beginning with the establishment of this account, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall submit a report to the Congress concerning the status of the account, including any balances therein, and recommend any adjustment in the prescribed fee that may be required to ensure that the receipts collected from the fee charged for the succeeding two years equal, as closely as possible, the cost of providing appointed counsel as required under this Act.
213.Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act, and annually thereafter, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall submit to the Congress a report detailing the number of applicants that receive'--
(1)a provisional denial under this Act;
(2)a final denial under this Act without seeking judicial review;
(3)a final denial under this Act after seeking judicial review; and
(4)an approval under this Act after seeking judicial review.
NWO
Stacey Abrams won't disclose donors of millions to voter drive
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 14:31
AJC Investigation By
Alan Judd , The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Nonprofit foundations laid groundwork for her bid for governorStacey Abrams' name was nowhere to be found on statewide ballots in the 2014 elections. In Georgia's House District 89, which she had represented since 2007, she didn't even have an opponent.
But Abrams was nonetheless directing a sprawling, well-funded campaign, one that established her as a major political figure in Georgia and beyond.
Abrams raised $12.5 million between 2013 and 2016 for two non-profit, tax-exempt foundations she created: Third Sector Development and the Voter Access Institute, public records show. Third Sector ran a voter-registration drive called the New Georgia Project that focused on people of color. Voter Access reached out to what it called ''low-propensity'' voters, trying to persuade them to cast their ballots.
Now, as she tries to become the first African-American woman elected governor of any state, Abrams won't say where the money came from, even though the two foundations paid her, over three years, nearly half a million dollars.
The foundations' work underwhelmed many of Abrams' fellow Democrats. Their party got just 3 percent more votes for governor in 2014 than in 2010, and turnout among African-American voters declined by more than 2 percentage points.
But for Abrams, the registration drive was a success. It introduced her to wealthy progressive activists across the country, some of whom are now spending millions of dollars supporting her gubernatorial campaign. It also led to a fraud investigation by the state Board of Elections, the source of lingering animosity between Abrams and her Republican opponent for governor, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp.
RELATED: How voting issues became a big issue in Georgia's governor race
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reviewed public tax filings by Abrams' foundations, her personal financial disclosures, tax returns of organizations that supported her, and records of the Board of Elections investigation. The documents, as well as interviews with Republican and Democratic politicians and operatives, suggest the foundations' greatest successes lie in creating the infrastructure that undergirds Abrams' gubernatorial campaign.
At least 13 political consultants, fundraisers and other contractors working for Abrams this year have served in similar capacities for her foundations, her political action committee or her legislative campaigns. At least 11 paid members of her campaign staff also worked for Abrams' other political and non-profit groups. They include Lauren Groh-Wargo, who was Abrams' top aide on both foundations before becoming her campaign manager.
''Absolutely, 100 percent, no doubt,'' the foundations set the stage for the campaign, a former Democratic candidate said. Like others, the former candidate spoke on condition of anonymity, citing a fear of political retaliation for what might be perceived as criticism of the party's nominee.
For years, another Democrat said, Abrams made no secret that she planned to run for governor in 2018, ''so how shocking is it that a politician would set up committees to get money to help get them somewhere?''
Federal law does not require tax-exempt foundations like Abrams' to publicly identify contributors. Nor does the law prohibit disclosure, and many organizations routinely publish donor lists.
But the lack of transparency by foundations so closely tied to a prominent politician reinforces public cynicism, ethics advocates said.
''Are these groups, are these people going to have any influence with, potentially, our next governor?'' said Sara Henderson, executive director of Common Cause Georgia, a watchdog group. ''You would think turning over at least some of the information would be in her best interest and the voters' interest.''
Abrams' campaign declined to make her available for an interview. A spokeswoman, Priyanka Mantha, would not comment on Abrams' reasons for withholding donor names.
On Friday, the campaign issued a statement in which Abrams said: ''I'm proud of New Georgia Project's efforts to register, advocate for, and mobilize hundreds of thousands of Georgians and successfully combat voter suppression being perpetrated by Secretary of State Brian Kemp.''
Abrams, whose candidacy has turned her into a national political celebrity, also defended her foundations in an interview earlier this year with Glamour magazine. She suggested that questions about the organizations, especially concerning her salary, are sexist.
''The implicit question is: Why didn't you do it for less '' or for free?'' Abrams told the magazine. ''I can't imagine that any man at the head of a non-profit, who achieved what we achieved, and raised the kind of money that we raised, would be asked that question.''
Income inequality
Abrams' complicated relationship with money has hovered over her campaign.
Her first job as a Yale law school graduate paid $95,000 '' three times the combined earnings of her parents, she has said. But Abrams had student loans to pay. She charged thousands of dollars on credit cards: American Express, Nordstrom, Sears. She helped support her parents after Hurricane Katrina damaged their home near the Mississippi coast and when they experienced medical problems.
Then Abrams left her law firm job and started several small businesses as she pursued her political aspirations. By 2015, she fell behind on her federal income taxes. Now she's on a payment plan that requires her to send the Internal Revenue Service $1,000 a month to chip away at the $54,000 she owes in back taxes.
Kemp has attacked Abrams over her taxes, noting that she lent her campaign $50,000 while owing the government almost the same amount. ''If that's not criminal,'' he said at one point, ''it should be.''
But in a commentary she published last April on Forbes magazine's website, Abrams cast her financial troubles in broader political terms.
''Systemic biases, legacy barriers, and current explosions of inequality conspire to undermine wealth generation among minorities,'' especially women, she wrote.
When Abrams founded Third Sector in 1998 and Voter Access in 2014, neither appeared likely to affect her personal finances. Third Sector apparently raised so little money it didn't have to file federal tax returns until 2013.
But both foundations flourished after Abrams launched the New Georgia Project, to her benefit. She began drawing a salary from both organizations: $257,500 in 2014, $135,000 in 2015 and $50,000 in 2016.
Over the three years, her compensation totaled more than $442,000 '-- all for part-time work, according to the foundations' tax returns.
The face of resistance
Ensuring the right to vote, Abrams has said, is ''an essential part of who I am.''
In a 2015 speech to the Atlanta chapter of the American Constitution Society, Abrams said her father, the Rev. Robert Abrams, was arrested when he was 15 for trying to integrate polling places in his hometown, Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Her father's activism has continued for decades; she joked that her father protested, while her mother put up bail money.
In 2014, Abrams said in the speech, the New Georgia Project set out to register 833,000 ''voters of color'' within a decade. Most are young, poor, rural and, as she put it, ''afraid of voting.''
''They were afraid that if they voted, the sheriff would know how they voted and would come after them,'' she said, ''that somebody would be able to tell their boss and they would lose their jobs. This is not something that just sprang out of their imagination because often that's the information that's communicated to them by those trying to dissuade them from voting.''
Abrams' depictions of Southern disenfranchisement struck a nerve with progressive activists across the country, who already believed that Republican officials were trying to suppress minority voting. The issue became especially contentious after the U.S. Supreme Court in 2013 struck down a key provision in the Voting Rights Act, one that had required nine states, most in the South, to get federal approval before changing election laws and procedures.
Abrams quickly became a face of the resistance to voter-identification laws and other measures that seemed to erode voting rights. This gave her access to the Democracy Alliance, a collective of progressive organizations whose founders include George Soros, the liberal financier. Abrams submitted a proposal to the alliance's members in 2015 that said the New Georgia Project would generate 42,000 to 51,000 votes in the next year's presidential election. Voter Access, another document said, would ''communicate and turn out 600,000 low-propensity voters.''
Atlanta magazine first reported on the proposals in 2015.
By the end of 2016, the fourth year of intensive fundraising, Abrams' foundations had taken in $12.5 million.
Although Abrams won't identify donors, public records show that her foundations got money from several progressive groups that support Democratic candidates. They include America Votes, a non-profit organization backed by labor unions and advocates for gun control; the Sixteen Thirty Fund, another non-profit that also donates to environmental groups; and Priorities USA, a so-called super PAC that supported President Barack Obama's re-election in 2012 and Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign.
Earlier this year, in an interview with the Atlanta Jewish Times, Abrams for the first time revealed the names of two donors for the New Georgia Project: George Soros and his son, Alexander. George Soros has given $1.25 million to Abrams' political action committee, GeorgiaNEXT, since 2014. He also donated $1 million to the Georgia Democratic Party this year to support her campaign for governor. In the interview, Abrams did not say how much either George or Alexander Soros contributed for the New Georgia Project.
Fraud, or suppression?
The New Georgia Project was, ostensibly, non-partisan.
To keep Third Sector's tax-exempt status intact, the voter-registration drive could not promote any political party in general or any candidates specifically. Nevertheless, the drive targeted people who tend to vote Democratic: African-Americans, Latinos, people of Asian descent. And, from 2014 on, Abrams' foundations hired political consultants who work all but exclusively for Democrats.
Third Sector's largest reported expenditure in 2014 was $1.8 million to a Washington firm that made its reputation through grassroots campaigning for Obama in 2008. That firm, Field Strategies, eventually hired about 800 canvassers for the New Georgia Project. Those workers had what Abrams later called 619,000 ''interactions'' with potential Georgia voters in the first year alone.
Soon, the New Georgia Project began submitting voter-registration applications by the thousands to county election offices.
That's when the trouble started.
In Muscogee County, for instance, many applications were illegible, some were submitted multiple times, and others contained suspicious information, said Nancy Boren, the county elections director.
''Duplicate registration forms were received with the same demographic information but with different signatures '-- for example, James Brown is the name on the application but the signature is Mary Smith,'' Boren said.
Boren was one of several officials who complained to the state Board of Elections, prompting an investigation by the secretary of state's office '-- the agency run by Brian Kemp, whose own ambitions for higher office were as well known as Abrams'.
Investigators from Kemp's office examined 208 registration applications from 16 counties, according to Board of Elections documents. Of the 208, the investigators alleged that 53 were fraudulent.
State law requires organizations like the New Georgia Project to turn in all applications it collects, even those containing inaccurate or incomplete information. But Abrams has charged that election officials were slow to process the applications, trying to suppress minority voting to protect Republican candidates. By 2015, officials validated about 64,000 of the more than 80,000 applications the New Georgia Project submitted in 2014.
The New Georgia Project says it had collected applications from another 140,000 people by the end of 2016. How many applications have been approved is not clear.
On Sept. 20, 2017, the Board of Elections '--which Kemp chairs '-- recommended criminal charges against 17 former canvassers, but took no action against Abrams or her foundations.
''It seems like we're going after the pushers and not the kingpin,'' said one board member, former state Sen. Seth Harp, a Republican from Columbus.
A year later, the state attorney general's office has taken no action against the 17 canvassers. The New Georgia Project operates independently from Third Sector. And Abrams and Kemp are their parties' nominees for governor, still battling over potential voters.
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Georgia candidates for governor clashed often in past over voting
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 14:31
Democrat Stacey Abrams created the New Georgia Project to register minority voters, but Republican Brian Kemp suspected fraudAs piles of voter registration forms flooded election offices in 2014, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp launched a fraud investigation into Stacey Abrams' ambitious effort to boost minority voter turnout.
Neither could have known at the time it was the first blow struck in what would become an extensive battle to win voters in Georgia.
Long before they were political rivals in the race to become Georgia's next governor, Abrams and Kemp regularly clashed over voting rights.
Their four-year feud could determine the outcome of one of the nation's most hard-fought gubernatorial campaigns.
Abrams, a Democrat, sought to vastly increase voter registrations among ''the new American majority'' of nonwhites, unmarried women and millennials '-- a group that she counts among her strongest supporters. Kemp, a Republican backed by President Donald Trump, said he prioritized registration accuracy and election security.
Abrams said Kemp is standing in the way of minority voters who are trying to participate in the democratic process.
''I have an opponent who is a remarkable architect of voter suppression,'' Abrams said this month on ''The Daily Show'' on Comedy Central. ''My mission is to tell folks, 'He doesn't matter, you do. Your right to vote is yours, and I'm going to give you a reason to use it.' ''
Kemp said his record proves he has increased voting access.
The number of registered voters in Georgia increased from 5.8 million when he took office in 2010 to 6.7 million today. And Kemp started online voter registration, a mobile app and a Student Ambassador Program to encourage voter registration among voting-age high school students.
''My policies and my record are very clear that I have made it easier to vote,'' Kemp said in an interview. ''We have made the elections process more accessible to people in Georgia, not less, despite their rhetoric.''
Abrams was the Democrats' minority leader in the Georgia House when she founded the New Georgia Project in 2013 to sign up 800,000 people of color within a decade who weren't registered to vote.
While the New Georgia Project is a nonpartisan organization, the groups it targets consistently vote for Democrats. If the New Georgia Project meets its goal of signing up hundreds of thousands of minority voters, the balance of power in Georgia could swing from Republicans. So far, it has submitted a total of 250,000 registration applications.
When the New Georgia Project ramped up its voter registration drive before the 2014 election, it swamped local election officials with roughly 85,000 applications.
That quickly caught Kemp's eye. He began looking into complaints of forged signatures and incomplete forms.
Just over half, about 46,000 of those applicants, were registered as active voters before the November general election that year.
Many applicants weren't added to voting rolls until their information was verified months later '-- after the election. About 18,000 applications were validated the next year. A total of 7,000 applications were canceled, 5,000 were duplicates and 10,000 couldn't be reconciled.
The New Georgia Project was required by law to turn in every registration form it gathered, even if it was incomplete.
Kemp's investigation eventually found no wrongdoing by the New Georgia Project, but he did find fault with its independent contractors who handled registration forms.
A total of 53 applications were allegedly forged. Seventeen contractors were referred to law enforcement for potential prosecution last year. None has been charged with a crime, and they denied submitting false documentation.
Civil rights leaders such as Democratic U.S. Rep. John Lewis criticized Kemp, saying he was making it difficult for Georgians to participate in the political process. Kemp at one point acknowledged the potential for Democrat-backed registration efforts to change the state's political landscape.
''Registering all these minority voters that are out there and others that are sitting on the sidelines, if they can do that, they can win these elections in November,'' according to remarks Kemp made to Gwinnett County Republicans in 2014. Kemp urged Republicans to match those registration efforts.
Kemp said the New Georgia Project is to blame for voter registrations that weren't processed in 2014.
Some registration forms were missing accurate street addresses or dates of birth. Others were submitted more than once. Signatures didn't always match on duplicate registration forms.
''Applications we received from these canvassers were difficult to process, missing critical information, (and) contained duplicate registration submitted within days of each other,'' Muscogee County Elections Director Nancy Boren said Sept. 20 in testimony to the State Election Board. ''Often it was five or more applications dated one or two days apart.''
Kemp's strict ''exact match'' policy also held up registrations.
The policy required voter registration information to match driver's license, state ID card or Social Security records. Mismatched voter registrations were put on ''pending'' status until voters verified their information.
Kemp settled a lawsuit last year so that the state would no longer reject applications that didn't exactly match personal identification information, an issue that affected 34,874 registration applications from 2013 to 2016. The Georgia General Assembly quickly reinstated ''exact match'' for voter registrations by passing it into state law last year.
The New Georgia Project's executive director, Nse Ufot, said Kemp is responsible for seeking voter ID laws, purges of inactive voters, ''exact match'' procedures and shorter voter registration deadlines.
''So no, the laws of Georgia have not made it easy to register new voters and move them to the polls,'' Ufot said. ''Voting groups like ours have repeatedly had to sue Brian Kemp's office to enforce the NVRA (National Voter Registration Act) and existing state and federal laws.''
A lawsuit threat last month from the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law alleged that the ''exact match'' system has a negative impact on African-American, Latino and Asian-American voters.
For example, registrations were put on hold because of hyphens in their names, because the last four digits of their Social Security numbers matched a different person, or even because their status as U.S. citizens hadn't been updated in state computers, said Julie Houk, senior special counsel for the Lawyers Committee, which fights inequitable treatment of African-Americans and other racial minorities.
''Whether this was an intentional decision to discriminate against minorities, I can't say that for certain, but there is circumstantial evidence: It became known that large numbers of minorities were not getting out to the polls because of exact match,'' Houk said.
Abrams didn't comment for this article, and her spokeswoman issued a broad statement that didn't address Kemp's record on voter registrations.
''He cannot be trusted in any position of power,'' Abrams spokeswoman Priyanka Mantha said.
Kemp spokeswoman Candice Broce said in a May email that election officials did their best to accommodate the New Georgia Project, working long hours to process their applications and informing them of the need for legible, complete registration forms. But the New Georgia Project ''prioritized volume of applications over quality,'' she said.
''If these problems continue, it is because the New Georgia Project remains uniquely sloppy in their registration efforts,'' Broce said.
The New Georgia Project has said its error rates are lower than most other registration drives nationwide.
Election officials weren't suppressing votes, Gwinnett County Elections Director Lynn Ledford said. They were doing their jobs by trying to help people register, sending them letters to seek verification of registration information, and rejecting applications as required by state law.
''It was frustrating to us because it was frustrating to the voters,'' Ledford said. ''Oftentimes we would get complaints from voters who would say, 'We're already registered, and why are you sending us these forms?' We'd have to explain that wasn't our form. That was from the New Georgia Project.''
Complaints about the New Georgia Project have subsided since 2014, Ledford said.
This year, Ufot said, her organization has helped 25,000 Georgians turn in registration forms. The group's goal is to enroll an additional 75,000 voters before this year's Oct. 9 voter registration deadline.
Voter registration and turnout will continue to be a key battleground for both Abrams and Kemp this fall. Both will attempt to galvanize their supporters and then turn their enthusiasm into votes.
African-American voters, the largest group sought by the New Georgia Project, overwhelmingly vote for Democratic candidates, and they've made historic gains in Georgia over the past four midterm elections, according to an analysis in May by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. African-American voters made up more than 30 percent of the state's active registered voters in the last midterm election in 2014, an increase from 26 percent in 2006.
But Democratic candidates have consistently remained below the majority needed to win elections in Georgia.
Democratic candidates for president received between 45 percent and 47 percent of the vote in each of the past three presidential elections, as well as in the 2014 governor's election between Republican Gov. Nathan Deal and Democrat Jason Carter.
Republican consultant Dan McLagan said he's skeptical that Abrams' voter registration efforts will change the outcome of the election.
''You hear the same argument every election cycle. It's basically a concession that you don't have enough support in the state to win, so you have to go find some new people,'' McLagan said. ''Stacey hasn't been terribly effective at doing that in the past. I don't see what separates this time from last time.''
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OUR REPORTING
It's a busy election year, and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution is keeping the spotlight on the leading candidates for governor, Republican Brian Kemp and Democrat Stacey Abrams. Stories we've done include a look at Kemp's fundraising among industries he regulates and Abrams' tax difficulties. Look for more at ajc.com/politics as the state heads for the general election on Nov. 6.
The story so far
Before the 2014 election, Democrat Stacey Abrams launched the New Georgia Project, an organization focused on registering racial minorities and others to vote. Republican Brian Kemp started an investigation after hearing complaints of suspicious registration applications.
Last year, the investigation concluded that 53 applications were allegedly forged by independent contracts, and investigators found no wrongdoing by the New Georgia Project.
Now, voting rights and registrations are an issue in the heated race for governor between Kemp and Abrams.
Bilderberg Ahoy! Pompeo and Kushner join the billionaire boat club | World news | The Guardian
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 11:26
B athed in late afternoon sun, the US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, boarded a steamboat on Lake Geneva. He was there for drinks and nibbles with the King of Holland and the head of Nato, a glamorous end to a busy day at the Bilderberg summit.
Representing the White House, Jared Kushner wore a beatific smile as he strode towards the boat, thinking, perhaps, of how best to sell a war with Iran over a glass of frascati.
Security at the wharf was drum tight. Amid a sea of secret service personnel, Pompeo was accompanied by the US ambassador to Switzerland, Ed McMullen. The pair looked keen to continue the geopolitical strategizing over canap(C)s.
The secretary general of Nato, Jens Stoltenberg, was flanked by heavily armed bodyguards as he strode along the jetty. He has attended the last three Bilderberg meetings, turning up for ''informal discussions'' with a watchful squad of security and staff.
Officers aboard a Swiss police launch scoured the waterfront for trouble. Nothing broke the golden calm apart from a lone voice from the quayside that advised Pompeo, in French, that he should play more tennis as he might be looking a little overweight. That was the gist of it, at least.
Up on deck, King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands chatted to James O Ellis, a former head of US Strategic Command, now a director of Lockheed Martin. A Netflix board member squeezed past on his way to the bar.
For the Dutch king to be seen networking with Lockheed Martin at Bilderberg might not be the best look: in the 1970s a lobbying scandal involving the company caused his grandfather, Prince Bernhard, to resign his public offices. Decades later, Bilderberg's heady mixture of senior public figures, lobbyists and investors discussing policy behind closed doors remains hard to defend on transparency grounds. Even the air around the steamboat soiree, filled with the happy chatter of diplomats, industrialists and press barons, has an air of corruption about it. Although that might just be the gruyere puffs.
At the ship's stern a former chief executive of Google, Eric Schmidt, broke off from chatting to the CEO of French finance giant Axa to take snaps of the lake. An influential figure, Schmidt is chair of the Pentagon's Defense Innovation Board and also heads a new US government advisory group on artificial intelligence.
Bilderberg has a keen and growing interest in hi-tech and AI. Schmidt's fellow Bilderberg insider Peter Thiel, the billionaire founder of PayPal and a director of Facebook, was seen arriving with the Swedish physicist and AI expert Sara Mazur.
They were followed along the jetty by LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman, another adviser to the Pentagon on tech. The Microsoft board member and Bilderberg regular practically floated up the gangplank, looking delighted to feel the sun on his skin.
There were almost as many billionaires on the boat as there were bodyguards. And there were more journalists and commentators clinking glasses with bank bosses than outside the security cordon, reporting on the event.
This year's conference was more than usually packed with ''embedded'' reporters who, as part of the deal, say nothing about what goes on. Here's journalist John Micklethwait, editor-in-chief of Bloomberg News, happily putting it away between the head of Unesco on the left and another director of Axa on the right.
The Italian journalist Stefano Feltri strolled on board with the cheery Dutch prime minister, Mark Rutte. Feltri is right there, in the middle of one of the year's biggest diplomatic summits, but he won't be saying a word about it because of that white lanyard round his neck.
As the sun set on Lake Geneva, the boat set off for Chillon Castle, where Pompeo gave a Q&A and participants were treated to a banquet. It's always fun to thrash out ''a new strategic order'' over a fondue.
In all, it was a bit eerie watching such a relaxed, twinkly drinks party in the context of a conference featuring so many Pentagon officials and advisers and Nato strategy chiefs. A large chunk of the agenda had a military flavour: ''The weaponisation of social media'', ''cyber threats'', even ''the importance of space''. A couple of weeks ago, Stoltenberg announced that Nato is about to announce a new ''space policy''.
Another glass of champagne?
Stacey Abrams to Hollywood: Please stay in Georgia, y'all
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 21:51
While Hollywood executives are busy jumping on the bandwagon about pulling up stakes in Georgia and taking their productions elsewhere, Stacey Abrams wants them to take a breath. She's going to Los Angeles to plead her case to entertainment business decision-makers on June 11. Abrams is hoping to sway them to stay in Georgia, keep the jobs in place, and there's a hashtag for it.
Abrams and her allies have pushed a ''#StayAndFight'' movement that encourages Hollywood leaders to donate to candidates and groups challenging the law instead of boycotting the state. The industry employs more than 90,000 people in businesses that range from set design to catering.
The invitation for a meeting was extended by former CBS chairwoman Nina Tassler. The meeting will discuss the ''reality that employees in the state may not have full access to healthcare or the freedom to make decisions about their futures and their families.'' Abrams is bringing along Ilyse Hogue, the president NARAL Pro-Choice America to help make the case to stay in Georgia.
Governor Brian Kemp postponed his annual trip to Los Angeles to promote Georgia's film and television industry so that Abrams can go first. Abrams' message is for the left to continue to fight for abortion on demand up until the moment of birth, but just keep the jobs in Georgia and donate money to the organizations fighting the good fight. SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris sounds as though she is on the same page.
In addition to producers and production companies, SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris wrote in a personal Instagram post on Tuesday, ''As a woman and a person of conscience who has always used my voice to champion the rights of others, I am personally outraged at the all-out assault on women's health and safety by the 'fetal heartbeat' laws sweeping across our country.'' She added, ''I will do everything in my power to fight this egregious attack '-- starting with announcing my support for several important organizations fighting to safeguard women's health and rights'' and encouraged followers to donate to the ACLU, Access Reproductive Care and Planned Parenthood.
More than 90,000 people are employed by film and television production companies in Georgia, not only actors but all the folks behind the cameras and service industry employees. Everyone from set designers to catering crews will feel the pinch if the jobs go away. On May 31 an article was published in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution criticizing Governor Kemp for his alleged inaction to save Georgia jobs. One reason cited was that Abrams may challenge Kemp in a rematch of their race for the Office of Governor.
''We are the party of freedom and opportunity,'' he said at the Georgia GOP convention in Savannah. ''We value and protect innocent life '-- even though that makes C-list celebrities squawk.
''There are other reasons for the silence. Any public misstep could risk throwing gas on the fire. And his allies note that most of the film industry titans supported Stacey Abrams anyways.
She wants to ''fund the defeat of these politicians and their horrible behavior.'' She wants Hollywood money to do that. She calls Georgia's position a unique one for the fight.
Market Warnings: Major studios haven't boycotted GA yet, but laid out conditions for departure. GA isn't the only state w film tax credit, but we're the major one potentially hostile to women. Want to change market conditions? 2020 state elections are a good start. #Consequences
'-- Stacey Abrams (@staceyabrams) May 31, 2019
We'll know soon enough if Abrams and her NARAL cohort are successful after the June 11 meeting. Meanwhile, the governor points to the fact that many conservatives aren't real thrilled with the tax incentives offered to Hollywood to come to Georgia in the first place.
''If there are some in the entertainment industry who don't want to invest here, there are others who will,'' he told The Savannah Morning News after a recent speech. ''There are a fair amount of Georgia citizens who disagree with us giving them money '-- through the tax incentives '-- to begin with.''
I think Governor Kemp is correct in his thinking here. Others will step in and fill the vacuum if some carry out their threats and leave the state. They will take advantage of the tax breaks and incentives offered by the State of Georgia. The entertainment industry is a business, after all, and a healthy bottom line creates the jobs that Abrams and Kemp want to preserve.
Sonoma County supervisors question Bohemian Grove police services contract
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 11:15
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
June 4, 2019, 8:57PM
Updated 18 hours ago
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The female-majority Sonoma County Board of Supervisors balked Tuesday at approving a law enforcement contract with the exclusive Bohemian Grove for its encampment next month in Monte Rio, citing the 147-year-old club's policy of prohibiting women as members or attendees at its annual gathering under the redwoods along the Russian River.
The objection, initially led by supervisors Shirlee Zane and Lynda Hopkins, focused on whether the county could legally enter into the contract with the male-only San Francisco-based club founded in 1872.
Zane said the club's gender exclusionary policy raises a ''constitutional issue'' of whether taxes paid by men and women could be used to provide an estimated $151,127 worth of police services during the encampment from July 10 to 28. Under the contract, the Bohemian Grove reimburses the county for its costs.
''I don't see how we can be providing law enforcement for a club that discriminates so blatantly,'' she said.
''How does this still exist in 2019?'' Hopkins said, noting that wealthy and influential men fly in from all over the country for a mid-summer respite in the community that has Sonoma County's highest unemployment rate.
Zane called for postponing action on the contract for a week, giving county attorneys a chance to review the legality of the deal.
If the board rejects the contract, the Sheriff's Office would still be required to provide public law enforcement services in Monte Rio but without compensation from the club, Sheriff Mark Essick said.
The board protest targeted a contract seen as routine in past years, and it renewed in a narrow way longstanding public scrutiny of the annual Bohemian Grove gathering, cloaked in secrecy, of rich and powerful men on a 2,700-acre enclave where members reside in rustic camps scattered among the tall trees.
Founded by San Francisco journalists, artists and musicians after the Civil War, the club soon included wealthy businessmen and now blends plutocrats and power brokers with musicians and actors for entertainment.
No one representing the Bohemian Club spoke at Tuesday's meeting. The contract was listed on the board's consent agenda, which includes items typically approved without discussion.
The club's general manager and a San Francisco spokesman did not respond to repeated requests for comment.
After some debate, the five-member board agreed to postpone a decision until next week, despite Essick's statement that the delay would make it ''extremely difficult'' to meet the contract obligations and ''could possibly damage our relationship'' with Bohemian Grove.
''I certainly hear your concerns,'' Essick said, adding that it was a ''late hour'' to take a ''deeper dive'' into the legal issues.
The Sheriff's Office sees deputies in this case as ''rental public safety officers'' and is not endorsing the Bohemian Club, he said. Female deputies would be able to enter the grove if needed, Essick said.
The deputies' purpose is to protect the Bohemians and grove employees, and maintain the right of free speech for any protesters who might congregate around the gate, Essick said later in an interview.
From a public safety standpoint, Essick noted that two deputies are assigned to downtown Guerneville on busy summer days. Without the grove contract, those deputies could be pulled away in response to calls for service in Monte Rio, he said.
Trump Rotation
About Us - World Mental Health Coalition
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 16:53
Executive CommitteeBandy X. Lee, President
Prudence Gourguechon, Vice President
Scott Banford, Secretary/Treasurer
Co-FoundersBandy X. Lee '' Melissa Mendenhall
Former Co-Leaders (2017-2018)Bandy X. Lee '' Melissa Mendenhall '' Thomas Singer
Board of Directors(To be announced)
Advisory Board(To be announced)
Committees***MESSAGE OF APPRECIATION***The recent conference in Washington, DC, was our most monumental event to date, which means there was phenomenal teamwork behind the scenes! We would like to thank, in particular:
Sara Pascoe, who was Bandy's ''right-hand woman'' and did almost an equal amount of work in lock-step for weeks leading up to the conference
Mark Bruzonsky, who, as a reporter in Washington, was the brains behind the whole operation
Stacey Pritchett, who, as our web designer, stepped in upon every need regarding the web site, live stream, slide show, flyer, banner, and everything in between
Claire Silverman, who went through the entire new edition to select the best quotes from authors, and then the entire conference video to select the best ''highlights''
David Schatz, who gathered all the essential videos and best slides for the film in the beginning and non-author slide show throughout
Sandra Luckow, who patched together videos to create a film for the conference on extremely short notice, and then the ''highlights'' video after the conference
Will Jenkins, who filmed the live stream following days of figuring out the technical aspects
Ian Fay, who helped with the technical aspects of live stream
Jeffrey Sachs, who helped conceive the event and agreed to moderate
Jerrold Post, who looked into George Washington University and helped select speakers
Edwin Fisher, who helped consider venues and speakers
James Merikangas, who toured Bandy around various potential venues
John Zinner, who helped brainstorm and gave advice
Jason Stanley, who helped us find the unique woman panelist who would agree
Robert McDonald, who stepped in at an urgent moment of need and gathered fax numbers
Leslie Wagner, who called around media contacts when our PR firm fired us two days before our event
Sheila Nielsen, who helped publicize our event and informed lawmakers
Barabara Lavi, who managed Twitter, took care of the house and food, and served as an usher
Robin Freedman, who publicized to the universities and served as an usher
Farrell Silverberg, who helped with announcements to professional societies
Mary Intermaggio, who managed the housing and ushers
And authors and others who came all the way to attend the conference and/or Coalition meeting:
Jennifer Panning
Steve Wruble
Gail Sheehy
Rosa Bramble
Prudence Gourguechon
Steven Moffic
Steve Hassan
Diane Perlman
Jenifer Wolf-Williams
Joseph Abraham
All of you have been marvelously congenial and generously giving of your time, ideas, and expenses as you support our fledgling organization!
For all those who watched us and rooted for us from afar, thank you for holding down the fort!
In solidarity and gratitude,
Bandy & Scott
Democrats plan Capitol Hill event to put Trump's mental health under fire
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 16:49
| June 05, 2019 12:00 AM
Democrats are planning to host a Capitol Hill event featuring psychiatrists who will warn that President Trump is unfit for office based on his mental health.
The event will be led by Dr. Bandy Lee, a Yale School of Medicine psychiatrist and editor of The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, a book that argues psychiatrists have a responsibility to warn the public when a president is dangerous. The position is controversial because psychiatric associations urge members never to diagnose patients they haven't personally evaluated, saying it undermines the scientific rigor of the profession.
But Lee and others who agree with her stance say that their description of the president's behavior, of his showing mental instability and dangerousness, shouldn't be interpreted as issuing a diagnosis.
''The president's condition has been visibly deteriorating to the point where there's a lot of talk right now about his mental state beyond mental health professionals," Lee said. "It no longer takes a mental health professional to recognize the seriousness of the current presidency."
The date for the town hall hasn't been set but would be held "imminently soon within the next couple of weeks," said Lee, who said the event was meant to be bipartisan. Budget Committee Chairman John Yarmuth, D-Ky., who has called for Trump's impeachment, confirmed the event was in the works, but said it would be more likely to occur in July because lawmakers have a full plate in June with spending bills.
"We're planning to put together an event," Yarmuth said. "She's calling it a town hall. We haven't actually determined the format, but it's going to be an event where she is going to present her findings, and media will be invited."
Yarmuth said every House member would be invited but that he hadn't yet gauged who would be interested because not many people knew about it. Lee said the group would reconsider the event if no Republicans planned to show up.
The White House did not immediately return a request for comment.
According to Lee, attendees at the town hall would watch a condensed video that was recorded at a Washington, D.C., event held at the National Press Club in March that featured 13 experts discussing how they didn't think Trump was fit for office. The experts, who came from the fields of mental health, philosophy, history, and journalism, said they were worried about the president's access to nuclear weapons and the impact his administration would have on climate change.
Lee said the event is to allow members of Congress to ask her and other experts questions, but planners hope the town hall will be broadcast live so that people who aren't in D.C. also would be able to watch and submit questions.
Lee said the experts won't make specific recommendations about whether Congress should consider invoking the 25th Amendment to remove the president from office or whether they should do so by impeachment. The political process should be determined by members of Congress, she said.
Yarmuth said that, to him, the event was a separate question from impeachment. "I don't think an assessment of someone's mental health is an impeachable issue," he said.
He decided to hold the event "for the same fears she has," he said, referring to Lee. "That the president is manifesting dangerous behavior and the American people need to be alert to it."
"Their position is that as professionals, when they see patterns of behavior that are endangering people, that they have a professional obligation to go public and alert the people who are threatened, and in this case it's the American people," Yarmuth said. "I think the American people deserve to have wider dissemination of that perspective."
It's not yet clear who else will participate. Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., who has a 25th Amendment bill that would set up a body in Congress to determine presidential fitness, had been asked to be on a panel that was based on the topic and set for sometime around May 20. The panel was then canceled or postponed because of scheduling conflicts, and Raskin's office said it hadn't heard about a new one in the works.
His deputy communications director, Samantha Brown, said in an email that he likely would have discussed the 25th Amendment from a historical and legal perspective.
Lee has been outspoken about Trump's mental state. She's the public face of a five-person group that is meeting regularly in D.C. and working to set up a medical panel to evaluate the mental capacity of Trump and Democratic presidential candidates.
"It's deceptive because it seems like he's alert, it seems like he's responding to things in a rational manner, but it is not the case from every measure that we have taken," Lee said of Trump. "And this is very serious. In fact, worse than if he had a stroke and were unconscious because he can mislead the country in destructive or nefarious ways."
One of the other members of the working group is Dr. James Merikangas, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at George Washington University, but the others haven't identified themselves publicly and aren't known to the Washington Examiner.
In April, Lee and other psychiatrists wrote a report using the former special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian election interference to make an assessment about the president's mental health. They at first refrained from issuing a conclusion and gave Trump three weeks to undergo an evaluation. After they didn't hear back, they released a conclusion that Trump "lacks mental basic mental capacity for duties of office" and recommended his access to nuclear weapons and war powers be curtailed.
''Our concern is that the dangers be contained '-- the dangers of having a president who lacks the mental capacity, lacks the fitness to discharge his duties of office for the remainder of his term," Lee said. "I mean, this is really a national emergency."
Green New Deal
Global Warming '' Just Follow the Money | Armstrong Economics
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 13:28
I just returned from New York City, the armpit of the world since I never saw an apple tree there yet, and I had a very interesting meeting behind the curtain. I thought I would share this subject which they agreed I could go public on without names of course. Besides the fact that there is an understanding that this entire Global Warming scenario is acknowledged nonsense for in real science you debate whereas this agenda seeks to shut down any debate whatsoever, there has been a geopolitical agenda that has been going on which is also why Trump has refused to join the club.
There are those who were using this movement for geopolitical reasons trying to oppress emerging markets which included China. When I was in Beijing back in 1997, 95% of the people were on bicycles. Today, perhaps 5% use bicycles that noticed on the streets. There were far more people riding bicycles in Amsterdam than in Beijing based on just my observations on my last trip to both places. In just 5 years, China had poured more concrete into their infrastructure than the United States had poured since the Great Depression. Trying to ban coal was perhaps a covert move to try to keep China from expanding.
But it had other problems. Angela Merkel banned nuclear power after the Japan nuclear disaster yet this meant that Germany would still be in a position to produce energy by coal. In Sweden, they used the Global Warming agenda to move to nuclear power.
The other covert agenda only required the simple task of following the money. From the very beginning, the movement to create nuclear power plants funded the agenda of Global Warming to clear the resistance to move to what they were calling a ''cleaner'' form of energy. The Trump administration has repeatedly vowed to help revitalize the nation's nuclear power industry, which has struggled to compete with cheap renewables and natural gas. However, he has been unable to get that through Congress.
Meanwhile, the U.S. did agree to build six nuclear reactors in India, which has plans to massively scale up its nuclear-power program to meet the country's growing energy demands as it reduces emissions. There is no doubt that the Global Warming agenda has also begun as a means to further the nuclear power industry in international markets.
The compelling argument used to convince that the world must turn to nuclear power plants centers on the fact that it is carbon-free energy to stave off global warming. It's not at all clear that renewables can do the job alone and the dream of electric cars will never materialize without nuclear power on any grand scale. Nuclear is a proven technology, which already provides 11% of all electricity globally. They need the Global Warming propaganda to justify building nuclear power plants which are far more costly to construct '' $5 billion to $10 billion a pop. Sometimes, it just helps to follow the money.
California And Nevada Have Been Hit By 240 Earthquakes Over The Last 24 Hours '' End Of The American Dream
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 03:57
The unusual shaking on the west coast continues to intensify. As you can see from this map, 240 earthquakes have struck the states of California and Nevada over the last 24 hours. Yes, the west coast gets hit by quakes every day, but this is definitely an unusually high number. Fortunately, most of the earthquakes have been very small, but a couple of them were greater than magnitude 3.0. The following comes from the Los Angeles Times'...
A magnitude 3.3 earthquake was felt in parts of Southern California on Sunday afternoon, one in a series of quakes to hit the Riverside County area.
The latest quake occurred at 4:36 p.m. and was centered on Glen Avon, south of Fontana. The seismic activity continued into Monday morning with dozens of new small quakes.
According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the quakes were felt across swaths of the Inland Empire, a region that has had hundreds of small quakes over the weekend, including one that registered a magnitude of 3.1.
This comes during a stretch of time when there has been a heightened level of seismic activity along the west coast. For much more on this please see my previous article entitled ''California Is Shaken By More Than 80 Earthquakes As Chile Is Hit By The Largest Quake In 12 Years''. So when I got this latest news, I wanted to get this update out to you all right away.
Hopefully it will not happen immediately, but at some point there will be a history-altering earthquake along the southern California coastline that will cause death and destruction on a scale that most of us don't even want to think about right now.
In fact, scientists have specifically warned us that someday a colossal earthquake ''could plunge large parts of California into the sea almost instantly''.
Unfortunately, most California residents will not care about these warnings until it is too late to do anything about them.
About the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.
California And Nevada Have Been Hit By 240 Earthquakes Over The Last 24 Hours '' End Of The American Dream
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 03:57
The unusual shaking on the west coast continues to intensify. As you can see from this map, 240 earthquakes have struck the states of California and Nevada over the last 24 hours. Yes, the west coast gets hit by quakes every day, but this is definitely an unusually high number. Fortunately, most of the earthquakes have been very small, but a couple of them were greater than magnitude 3.0. The following comes from the Los Angeles Times'...
A magnitude 3.3 earthquake was felt in parts of Southern California on Sunday afternoon, one in a series of quakes to hit the Riverside County area.
The latest quake occurred at 4:36 p.m. and was centered on Glen Avon, south of Fontana. The seismic activity continued into Monday morning with dozens of new small quakes.
According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the quakes were felt across swaths of the Inland Empire, a region that has had hundreds of small quakes over the weekend, including one that registered a magnitude of 3.1.
This comes during a stretch of time when there has been a heightened level of seismic activity along the west coast. For much more on this please see my previous article entitled ''California Is Shaken By More Than 80 Earthquakes As Chile Is Hit By The Largest Quake In 12 Years''. So when I got this latest news, I wanted to get this update out to you all right away.
Hopefully it will not happen immediately, but at some point there will be a history-altering earthquake along the southern California coastline that will cause death and destruction on a scale that most of us don't even want to think about right now.
In fact, scientists have specifically warned us that someday a colossal earthquake ''could plunge large parts of California into the sea almost instantly''.
Unfortunately, most California residents will not care about these warnings until it is too late to do anything about them.
About the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.
New Report Suggests 'High Likelihood of Human Civilization Coming to an End' Starting in 2050 - VICE
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 12:07
A harrowing scenario analysis of how human civilization might collapse in coming decades due to climate change has been endorsed by a former Australian defense chief and senior royal navy commander.
The analysis, published by the Breakthrough National Centre for Climate Restoration, a think-tank in Melbourne, Australia, describes climate change as ''a near- to mid-term existential threat to human civilization'' and sets out a plausible scenario of where business-as-usual could lead over the next 30 years.
The paper argues that the potentially ''extremely serious outcomes'' of climate-related security threats are often far more probable than conventionally assumed, but almost impossible to quantify because they ''fall outside the human experience of the last thousand years.''
On our current trajectory, the report warns, ''planetary and human systems [are] reaching a 'point of no return' by mid-century, in which the prospect of a largely uninhabitable Earth leads to the breakdown of nations and the international order.''
The only way to avoid the risks of this scenario is what the report describes as ''akin in scale to the World War II emergency mobilization'''--but this time focused on rapidly building out a zero-emissions industrial system to set in train the restoration of a safe climate.
The scenario warns that our current trajectory will likely lock in at least 3 degrees Celsius (C) of global heating, which in turn could trigger further amplifying feedbacks unleashing further warming. This would drive the accelerating collapse of key ecosystems ''including coral reef systems, the Amazon rainforest and in the Arctic.''
The results would be devastating. Some one billion people would be forced to attempt to relocate from unlivable conditions, and two billion would face scarcity of water supplies. Agriculture would collapse in the sub-tropics, and food production would suffer dramatically worldwide. The internal cohesion of nation-states like the US and China would unravel.
''Even for 2°C of warming, more than a billion people may need to be relocated and in high-end scenarios, the scale of destruction is beyond our capacity to model with a high likelihood of human civilization coming to an end,'' the report notes.
The new policy briefing is written by David Spratt, Breakthrough's research director and Ian Dunlop, a former senior executive of Royal Dutch Shell who previously chaired the Australian Coal Association.
Read More: Scientists Warn the UN of Capitalism's Imminent Demise
In the briefing's foreword, retired Admiral Chris Barrie'--Chief of the Australian Defence Force from 1998 to 2002 and former Deputy Chief of the Australian Navy'--commends the paper for laying ''bare the unvarnished truth about the desperate situation humans, and our planet, are in, painting a disturbing picture of the real possibility that human life on Earth may be on the way to extinction, in the most horrible way.''
Barrie now works for the Climate Change Institute at Australian National University, Canberra.
Spratt told Motherboard that a key reason the risks are not understood is that ''much knowledge produced for policymakers is too conservative. Because the risks are now existential, a new approach to climate and security risk assessment is required using scenario analysis.''
Last October, Motherboard reported on scientific evidence that the UN's summary report for government policymakers on climate change'--whose findings were widely recognized as ''devastating'''--were in fact too optimistic.
While the Breakthrough scenario sets out some of the more 'high end' risk possibilities, it is often not possible to meaningfully quantify their probabilities. As a result, the authors emphasize that conventional risk approaches tend to downplay worst-case scenarios despite their plausibility.
Spratt and Dunlop's 2050 scenario illustrates how easy it could be to end up in an accelerating runaway climate scenario which would lead to a largely uninhabitable planet within just a few decades.
''A high-end 2050 scenario finds a world in social breakdown and outright chaos,'' said Spratt. ''But a short window of opportunity exists for an emergency, global mobilization of resources, in which the logistical and planning experiences of the national security sector could play a valuable role.''
Update: This story's headline has been updated to reflect that the paper suggests 2050 is when the analysts suspect widespread global strife will begin.
Solar Power Users, Utility At Odds Over Backup Fee : NPR
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 12:44
T.K. Thorne says the $20 monthly solar fee she pays to Alabama Power will double the time it will take to pay off her rooftop solar system. Julia Simon for NPR hide caption
toggle caption Julia Simon for NPR T.K. Thorne says the $20 monthly solar fee she pays to Alabama Power will double the time it will take to pay off her rooftop solar system.
Julia Simon for NPR In Alabama's Blount County, off the highway, down a dirt road and up a hill is writer T.K. Thorne's house. She points to her roof and a shining row of black solar panels.
It's a 4-kilowatt system '-- pretty typical for residential solar '-- and Thorne got it almost four years ago hoping to help the environment and reduce her electricity bill.
It was a big investment '-- $8,400 even after a federal tax break. Thorne estimated how long it would take to pay off the solar system, installed the panels, and began waiting for the savings to begin.
But then she found out about a monthly $5-per-kilowatt solar fee from the state's largest utility, Alabama Power.
"That's $20 a month," Thorne says. While that doesn't sound like a lot of money, she says, it will double the time it will take her to pay off the system.
Because of the fee, 65-year-old Thorne says it'll take almost two decades to pay back her panels.
"Yes," she says and laughs, "I may not be alive."
Green energy groups say this solar fee is a key reason why, according to Wood Mackenzie and the Solar Energy Industries Association, Alabama comes in 48th out of 50 states in residential solar capacity. (North Dakota and South Dakota trail Alabama).
Alabama Power spokesman Michael Sznajderman says there's a good reason for the fee: If a customer's rooftop solar panels don't provide enough energy, Alabama Power's still on the hook for backup electricity.
"There is a cost to have backup power service available to customers who demand it," he says.
Other regulated utilities across the U.S. have proposed residential solar fees. And New Mexico had one but got rid of it; Wisconsin is currently considering one.
And while there are fees in Arizona, Kansas and Texas, Alabama Power's backup fee seems to be in a class of its own. It currently has the highest backup fee based on the size of the residential solar system of any regulated utility in the U.S. That's according to data from the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center, which produces the 50 States of Solar report, as well as the National Regulatory Research Institute.
"How is that possibly the best they could do from a cost perspective when regulated utilities in other states do much better?" asks Gautam Gowrisankaran, a public service professor of economics at the University of Arizona.
He says Alabama Power is overcharging its solar customers in a couple of ways. First, solar customers in Alabama get paid a lot less for making solar energy than customers in other states.
On top of that, Alabama solar customers are paying for backup power in their regular bills, and paying an extra backup power fee. Gowrisankaran says he thinks this means Alabama's solar customers might be paying the utility twice.
"The bottom line is that ultimately they seem to be double counting '-- double charging essentially for the costs of backup generation," he says.
Alabama Power says there's no double-charging '-- it's simply covering backup costs. It notes that another payment option for solar customers doesn't include the backup fee, but critics say that ends up being even more expensive.
The Southern Environmental Law Center has filed a complaint with the state regulator, the Alabama Public Service Commission. The center is asking to get rid of the backup fee, saying it's unjust for solar customers like Thorne. Alabama Power wants the regulator to dismiss the complaint, and wants to increase the monthly fee from $5 to $5.42 per kilowatt.
Keith Johnston, who leads the law center's Birmingham office, says what's going on in Alabama should concern people across America because it goes to the heart of how utilities have been charging for power for more than 100 years.
"The traditional model of the utility is that ... they build large power generation systems such as coal-fired power plants or dams, and they have a captive audience that has to buy that energy," he says.
Today, though, homeowners have the option to install solar panels on their rooftops and become power generators themselves.
"Solar is a real disruptor because it allows people to create their own energy, and so the utilities typically get very nervous about that," Johnston says. "One way they can thwart that is to increase the cost to have one of those systems on your home."
Now, following the complaint, the Alabama Public Service Commission will decide if the solar fee is fair. In the meantime, if any of Thorne's neighbors ask her if it's worth it to get solar, she tells them, no. Not in Alabama Power territory.
Julia Simon is a regular contributor to NPR's Planet Money. You can also hear her on the NPR business desk and the NPR podcasts Code Switch and Rough Translation.
Any Collusion?
Joe diGenova: Steele interview about Russia collusion hoax should reveal Democratic Party corruption | Fox News
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 21:19
Democrats must be scared stiff by reports Tuesday that federal investigators will soon interview former British spy Christopher Steele, whose discredited dossier was integral to getting the Russia collusion witch hunt started.
The interview with Steele is likely to reveal the stench of corruption that emanates from what amounts to an attempted Democratic coup against President Trump.
Steele could be the key to exposing the whole corrupt cabal that conspired to undermine then-candidate and later President Trump with wildly false allegations that culminated in the appointment of Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
DOSSIER AUTHOR CHRISTOPHER STEELE WILL BE QUESTIONED BY US INVESTIGATORS: REPORT
After nearly two years of a massive investigation, Mueller was unable to substantiate the salacious claims Steele made in the dossier, which was proven to be bought and paid for by the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign.
This should have come as no surprise to the FBI, since agents were well aware that the document was thoroughly political in nature when they used it as the basis for a series of Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants to spy on former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page '' not once, but four times.
If Steele's knowledge about the Democratic Party's fraudulent and treasonous behavior becomes public, Democrats know that Trump will be virtually assured of winning re-election.
Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz is already looking into whether the FBI violated any laws in its handling of the FISA warrants.
And now Attorney General William Barr's investigators are hot on the trail of former FBI Director James Comey, former CIA Director John Brennan, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, and others who played a role in concocting the conspiracy to take down our duly elected president.
If investigators conclude that Comey, Clapper and others engaged in a criminal conspiracy '' as seems increasingly likely '' then Christopher Steele could easily be named as a co-defendant, which would trigger an extradition request that Britain would almost certainly honor.
Steele obviously doesn't want that to happen, which is probably why he declined a previous request for cooperation from U.S. Attorney John Durham, one of Barr's top investigators looking into the FISA warrants scandal.
We don't yet know which investigators will be interviewing Steele in the coming weeks, but it's a pretty safe bet that they've offered him some form of immunity in exchange for his candor. That should terrify the Democrats who enlisted him in their attempts to execute a Deep State coup against Trump.
If Steele spills the beans on his former handlers, the resulting prosecutions of former high-level federal officials would make Watergate seem trivial by comparison.
In addition to Comey, Clapper and Brennan, it's entirely possible that Steele's testimony will yield new insights that could eventually help to implicate even higher-ranking officials in the Obama administration.
Of course, even if famously aloof former President Barack Obama is able to maintain plausible deniability and keep investigators from proving that he knew of the Deep State effort to overturn the results of the 2016 election, the Democratic Party would deserve to be politically and electorally devastated by the revelation that some of its most prominent members engaged in such an illegal and anti-democratic scheme.
That's why Democrats who weren't even directly involved in the plot against Trump should be just as apprehensive about Steele's interview. They are now looking to the 2020 election as their final chance for defeating Trump, after Mueller deflated their hopes of removing the president from office early.
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If Steele's knowledge about the Democratic Party's fraudulent and treasonous behavior becomes public, Democrats know that Trump will be virtually assured of winning re-election.
The bell is tolling for the corrupt Democratic Party. The upcoming Steele interview proves that Attorney General Barr's investigators are closing in on the creators of the collusion hoax, and that should absolutely terrify every Democrat planning to run for office in 2020. as the stench of corruption is revealed and seeps into the political campaign season in earnest.
CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY JOSEPH DIGENOVA
FAT Anomalies In Leaked DNC Emails Suggest Use Of Thumbdrive '' Disobedient Media
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 11:38
Recently, I tweeted about several different batches of emails that made up the DNC emails collection initially published by WikiLeaks on July 22, 2016.
In that tweet, I included the following table:
The table outlines the last modification dates on the emails (batched by date) and shows the earliest and latest timestamps, minimum ID, maximum ID, count and a column titled ''FAT.''
What the table illustrates is that the first batches of DNC emails published by WikiLeaks have times that indicate the files were likely transferred to a FAT file system (likely transferred via a USB storage device).
Having received several queries concerning this, I wanted to give a more detailed explanation and, as further observations have been made, to report on these and make some clarifications.
FAT File System Indicators
The ''FAT'' column is in reference to the FAT file system, a file system that, in recent years, is usually used on USB storage devices (some outdated non-USB disk storage devices used this in the past too, but it's very rare to find such devices still in use).
One of the shortfalls of the FAT file system is that it stores timestamp data at a lower resolution (to the nearest two seconds). However, this is advantageous for the purpose of digital forensics as it means there is a pattern that can be detected and used to determine whether files were likely to have been transferred via a FAT file system.
The batches of DNC emails that appear to have been copied to a FAT file system due to this pattern have an ''x'' in the ''FAT'' column (in the table referenced at the beginning of this article).
The First Two Batches
Drawing upon a 30-day email retention policy and the sent dates of emails, research in the public domain has suggested that the DNC emails were likely acquired on dates between May 19-25, 2016 [@steemwh1sks] for some time.
Looking at the sent dates of emails and the last modified dates of the email files in the first two batches (those with last modification dates in May, two months prior to initial publication) it is possible to determine that:
Emails appear to have been copied on May 23, 2016 and May 25, 2016.Emails were stored on a device using the FAT file system (very likely to be a USB storage device) at some point in time between acquisition and being published by WikiLeaks.We can't, however, make any declaration on exactly when the files were moved to a USB device as different types of copy operations could produce the same result even if the files were transferred to USB weeks after acquisition (as it's possible to retain the last-modified dates in various circumstances).
Interestingly, the FAT file system indication is in line with claims made by Craig Murray that were published in December 2018 in relation to how WikiLeaks had obtained the DNC leaks through a physical hand-over of the emails.
This particular characteristic was also reported on recently (February 13, 2019) in an article authored by William Binney and Larry Johnson titled ''Why The DNC Was Not Hacked By The Russians''. In the article they state:
This data alone does not prove that the emails were copied at the DNC headquarters. But it does show that the data/emails posted by Wikileaks did go through a storage device, like a thumbdrive, before Wikileaks posted the emails on the World Wide Web.
This fact alone is enough to raise reasonable doubts about Mueller's indictment accusing 12 Russian soldiers as the culprits for the leak of the DNC emails to Wikileaks. A savvy defense attorney will argue, and rightly so, that someone copied the DNC files to a storage device (Eg., USB thumb drive) and transferred that to Wikileaks.
(The article also covers conflicts between intelligence community assessments and Mueller's July 2018 indictment.)
Looking at the transfer speeds on these batches also gives us reason to doubt that this was a local machine or local network transfer straight to a USB device as the transfers appear to have been at a rate of ~3 megabits/second.
This suggests the files published by WikiLeaks may initially have been transferred remotely.
Some will argue that this supports assertions regarding the DNC being hacked, however, the rates observed alone could just as easily be argued to support statements made by Seymour Hersh that were reported on in July/August 2017 which suggest that WikiLeaks obtained access to a password protected DropBox where the files [DNC and Podesta emails] had been placed.
Later Batches
As well as the batches of emails with last modified dates before the initial publication of DNC Leaks on July 22, 2016, there were two further batches of DNC emails that were made available on WikiLeaks site at later dates and that had last-modified timestamps in August and September 2016.
The third batch, with last modified dates of August 26 2016, also appears to have been transferred via a USB storage device between acquisition and publication.
The fourth of these with last modified dates of September 21 2016, did not have the same 2-second rounding artifact.
While the new tranches included additional DNC staffers, WikiLeaks did not update their web page to reflect that additions were made. However, publication of the batch with the last modified date of September 21, 2016 was announced via the WikiLeaks Twitter account on November 6, 2016 (or November 7 on my side of the Atlantic):
RELEASE: 8263 new emails from the DNC #DNCLeak2 #feelthebern #imwithher #demexithttps://t.co/ftwH5t57lj pic.twitter.com/EljYHE0n9E
'-- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) November 7, 2016
The DNC emails page on WikiLeaks was updated a little over two weeks later (some time between November 22-25, 2016) with the new total (44,053 emails).
Additional Observations
Some emails had internal send times that were later than the last modified timestamps by up to as much as 7 hours in some cases.All times are normalized to GMT.The IDs assigned to the different batches of files aren't in a consistent sequence and it seems possible that the files were renamed after acquisition. (The May 23 batch, however, did use a subset of IDs used by the May 25 batch.)Total counts of emails associated with separate mailboxes that were published by WikiLeaks are interesting too. When looking solely at the emails, there are many sent to mailing list groups and, in these instances, it's extremely difficult (maybe impossible!?) to determine whose mailbox the email came from (see email 15384 for an example of this). There is also some disparity between the totals WikiLeaks cites and the number of emails that can be identified as belonging to a specific mailbox (with the latter being lower). These factors combined suggest that WikiLeaks were either told the totals for each mailbox or were provided the emails segregated by mailbox.There are approximately a thousand older emails (with dates prior to April 1, 2016) that account for a little over 2% of the emails released. While there could be various explanations for this, it appears (based on what is disclosed in one of the leaked emails) that the email retention rules didn't apply to emails if they were moved into other folders. This at least gives a good explanation for what would otherwise seem an anomalous presence of old emails.While there are 44,053 email files, WikiLeaks only indexes 27,515 (as can be seen when doing a blank search in their database):The reason for this disparity appears to be due to almost 40% of the emails being duplicates and the duplicates not being indexed.Based on an analysis of the Sent dates, batches 3 and 4 have a last sent date of May 23. Therefore, it is likely that batches 3 and 4 were also acquired on May 23. Data & Verification
Raw data for last modification timestamps is available here.
Raw data for the above with send dates included are available here.
(The latter of these has approximately 100 entries less than the former, as some emails lacked headers from which a sent date could be determined).
For those that don't want to (or don't have means to) scrape all of the data but wish to do a few manual spot-checks on the data linked to above, you can use your web browser to validate individual dates.
To do this, visit the leak you want to check (on WikiLeaks site), click on the ''View source'' tab and make sure your browser's developer console is open, then click on the ''Download raw source'' link. Your browser should send a GET request for the file (which will be for a URL that starts with ''https://wikileaks.org/dnc-emails//get/'' and is followed by the email ID).
If you expand the details and check the headers, you will find the ''Last-Modified'' date there and that is where the last modified timestamps are coming from.
The example below uses FireFox:
This obviously isn't practical for fully validating all of the data due to the volume of emails and is only referenced here as a simple way to do a spot-check that is accessible to most people and helps to illustrate where these last modified dates are being sourced from.
Conclusion
The evidence suggests that the first three batches of DNC emails were likely to have been transferred via a USB storage device at some stage between acquisition and then subsequently being published by WikiLeaks.
However, transfer speeds observed for the batches with last-modified dates matching the dates of acquisition indicate that they were transferred at approximately 3 megabits/second, a lot slower than we would expect if it were a local or LAN transfer, so the transfer we're looking at likely involved a remote transfer at some point between acquisition and delivery.
Given that (for the May 23 and May 25 batches) the file last modified times and the internal email sent times are close in many cases, it seems likely that the original emails were copied soon after acquisition. The anomalous time shift between last modification timestamps and the send times of emails (especially for the May 25 batch) raises the possibility that an intermediary on the West Coast (US) may have copied the emails to a USB drive. The time shift can be explained by then copying the thumb drive to local storage, while at a location in London, for example. The (hypothetical) existence of an intermediary doesn't tell us anything about the individual (or individuals) who originally acquired the emails. Thus, this scenario does not necessarily rule out the possibility of an insider acquiring the emails. If we contemplate the intermediate use of cloud storage, this could have been used as a method to decouple the acquisition of the emails from delivery to another party that subsequently delivered them to Wikileaks.
Credit (and many thanks) to Forensicator for researching, sharing observations, providing the data set, charts and more.
Guccifer 2.0 NGP/VAN Metadata Analysis '' The Forensicator
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 12:17
AcknowledgementsThanks go out to Elizabeth Vos at Disobedient Media who was the first to report on this analysis; her article can be read here. Thanks also to Adam Carter who maintains the g-2.space web site '-- the one stop shop for information that relates to Guccifer 2.0. You can reach Elizabeth and Adam on Twitter.
TerminologyThe abbreviation, ''MB/s'', used below refers to ''Mega Bytes per Second''. This should not be confused with the abbreviation ''Mb/s'' or ''Mbps'' which refer to ''Mega Bits per Second''; these later abbreviations are often used by Internet Service Providers (ISP's) to express the transfer speeds available on their networks. As a rule of thumb, divide Mb/s by 8 to arrive at an equivalent rate expressed in MB/s.
Updates2017-08-24: Three companion blog posts have been added:
Corrections and ClarificationsAlternative ScenariosPeak (38 MB/s) Transfer SpeedBelow, an addendum has been added to provide context for the Internet transfer speed statements made in the ''Findings'' section and Conclusion 7.
2017-08-02: The section starting at Conclusion 7, which discusses the calculated 23 MB/s transfer rate has been augmented to refer to a recently added blog entry, The Need for Speed, which documents test results for measured transfer rates for various media types and Internet topologies.
OverviewThis study analyzes the file metadata found in a 7zip archive file, 7dc58-ngp-van.7z, attributed to the Guccifer 2.0 persona. For an in depth analysis of various aspects of the controversy surrounding Guccifer 2.0, refer to Adam Carter's blog, Guccifer 2.0: Game Over.
AddendumWhen Forensicator began his review of the metadata in the NGP VAN 7zip file disclosed by Guccifer 2, he had a simple impression of how Guccifer 2 operated, based upon Guccifer 2's own statements and observations made by a security firm called ThreatConnect. Forensicator viewed Guccifer 2 as a lone wolf hacker who lived somewhere in Eastern Europe or Russia; he used a Russian-aligned VPN service to mask his IP address.
Forensicator's assumptions regarding Guccifer were not clearly stated, and this led to some confusion and controversy regarding claims in the report related to achievable transfer speeds over the Internet. Further, as the review process proceeded, alternative theories were suggested; they placed additional pressure on the Internet transfer speed claims and raised some additional interesting questions.
Forensicator's initial view of Guccifer 2 fed into this statement in the Findings section below: ''Due to the estimated speed of transfer (23 MB/s) calculated in this study, it is unlikely that this initial data transfer could have been done remotely over the Internet.'' That finding came under fire, partly because when taken out of context, it was counter to many people's experience.
Hopefully, with the context now more clearly stated, the Internet transfer speed claims will make more sense.
FindingsBased on the analysis that is detailed below, the following key findings are presented:
On 7/5/2016 at approximately 6:45 PM Eastern time, someone copied the data that eventually appears on the ''NGP VAN'' 7zip file (the subject of this analysis). This 7zip file was published by a persona named Guccifer 2, two months later on September 13, 2016.Due to the estimated speed of transfer (23 MB/s) calculated in this study, it is unlikely that this initial data transfer could have been done remotely over the Internet.The initial copying activity was likely done from a computer system that had direct access to the data. By ''direct access'' we mean that the individual who was collecting the data either had physical access to the computer where the data was stored, or the data was copied over a local high speed network (LAN).They may have copied a much larger collection of data than the data present in the NGP VAN 7zip. This larger collection of data may have been as large as 19 GB. In that scenario the NGP VAN 7zip file represents only 1/10th of the total amount of material taken.This initial copying activity was done on a system where Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) settings were in force. Most likely, the computer used to initially copy the data was located somewhere on the East Coast.The data was likely initially copied to a computer running Linux, because the file last modified times all reflect the apparent time of the copy and this is a characteristic of the the Linux 'cp' command (using default options).A Linux OS may have been booted from a USB flash drive and the data may have been copied back to the same flash drive, which will likely have been formatted with the Linux (ext4) file system.On September 1, 2016, two months after copying the initial large collection of (alleged) DNC related content (the so-called NGP/VAN data), a subset was transferred to working directories on a system running Windows. The .rar files included in the final 7zip file were built from those working directories.The computer system where the working directories were built had Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) settings in force. Most likely, this system was located somewhere on the East Coast.The .rar files and plain files that eventually end up in the ''NGP VAN'' 7zip file disclosed by Guccifer 2.0 on 9/13/2016 were likely first copied to a USB flash drive, which served as the source data for the final 7zip file. There is no information to determine when or where the final 7zip file was built.AnalysisThe Guccifer 2 ''NGP VAN'' files are found in a password protected 7zip file; instructions for downloading this 7zip file can be found at https://pastebin.com/fN9uvUE0.
Technical note: the size of the 7zip file is 711,396,436 bytes and the MD5 sum is: a6ca56d03073ce6377922171fc8b232d.
This .7z file contains several .rar files '' one for each top-level directory, as shown below.
The times shown above are in Pacific Daylight Savings Time (PDT). The embedded .rar files are highlighted in yellow. The ''*'' after each file indicates that the file is password encrypted. This display of the file entries is shown when the .7z file is opened. A password is required to extract the constituent files. This aspect of the .7z file likely motivated zipping the sub-directories (e.g. CNBC and DNC) into .rar files; this effectively hides the structure of the sub-directories, unless the password is provided and the sub-directories are then extracted. The last modification dates indicate that the .rar files were built on 9/1/2016 and all the other files were copied on 7/5/2016. Note that all the times are even (accurate only to the nearest 2 seconds); the significance of this property will be discussed near the end of this analysis. The files copied on 7/5/2016 have last modified times that are closely clustered around 3:50 PM (PDT); the significance of those times will be described below.
The Guccifer 2 ''NGP/VAN'' file structure is populated by opening the .7z file and then extracting the top-level files inclusive of the .rar files. The .rar files are further unpacked (using WinRAR) into directories with a name derived by dropping the .rar suffix.
Note: although other archive programs claim to handle .rar files, only WinRAR will reliably restore the archived files, inclusive of their sub-microsecond last modification times.
The times recorded in those .rar files are local (relative) times; this determination is detailed in the blog post, RAR Times: Local or UTC? . The times recorded in the .7z file are absolute (UTC) times. If you look at the recorded .rar file times, you will see times like ''7/5/2016 6:39:18 PM'' and the times in the .7z file will be at some offset to that depending on your time zone. For example, if you are in the Pacific (daylight savings) time zone, the files shown in the .7z file will read 3 hours earlier than those shown in the .rar files, as shown below.
In this case, we need to adjust the .7z file times to reflect Eastern Time. Something like this command if you are on the West Coast (using Cygwin) will make the adjustment.find . -exec touch -m -r {} -d '+3 hour' {} \;The .rar files can be unpacked normally because they will appear with the same times as shown in the archive.
Conclusion 1: The DNC files were first copied to a system which had Eastern Time settings in effect; therefore, this system was likely located on the East Coast. This conclusion is supported by the observation that the .7z file times, after adjustment to East Coast time fall into the range of the file times recorded in the .rar files.
Next, we generate (for example, using a Cygwin bash prompt) a tab-separated list of files sorted by last modified date.
echo -e 'Top\tPath\tFile\tLast Mod\tSize' > ../guc2-files.txt# Truncate the 10 fractional digits in last mod time to 3.# Excel won't print more than 3 fractional digits anyway.find * -type f -printf '%h\t%f\t%TF %TT\t%s\n' | \sort -t$'\t' -k3 -k1 -k2  | \perl -F'/\t/' -lane '$F[2] =~ s/(?<=\.\d{3})\d+$//;                      ($top=$F[0])=~s{/.*}{};                      print join ("\t", $top, @F);' \                      >> ../guc2-files.txtThis file is then imported into an Excel spreadsheet for analysis.
Many archive file formats (e.g., zip and 7zip) record file times only to whole second resolution. The .rar format however records file times to a higher (nanosecond) resolution. This can be difficult to confirm; the GUI interface will only display whole seconds. The included command line utility, rar, however can be used to display the sub-second resolution. The lt (''list technical'') command will provide further detail. For example, the following command will list additional detail on the file 48HourNotice-20081019-174240.fec in the FEC.rar archive.
"c:\Program Files\WinRAR\rar" lt FEC.rar FEC\48HourNotice-20081019-174240.fec
Conclusion 2: The DNC files were first copied to a file system that was formatted either as an NTFS file system (typically used on Windows systems) or to a Linux (ext4) file system. This conclusion is supported by the observation that the .rar file(s) show file last modified times (mtime) with 7 significant decimal digits (0.1 microsecond resolution) ; this is a characteristic of NTFS file systems.
It is possible that the DNC files were initially copied to a system running Linux and then later copied to a Windows system. Modern Linux implementations use the ext4 file system by default; ext4 records file times in nanoseconds. Thus, if the files were initially copied to a Linux ext4 file system and subsequently copied to a Windows NTFS file system the file times would have been preserved with the 0.1 microsecond precision shown above.
We observe that the last modified times are clustered together in a 14 minute time period on 2016-07-05. If the DNC files were copied in the usual way to a computer running a Windows operating system (e.g., using drag-and-drop in the File Explorer) the last modified times would typically not change (from the original) '-- the create time would change instead (to the time of the copy). The Windows File Explorer will typically only show the last modified time (by default). A file copy operation using the 'cp' command line utility commonly found on a UNIX system (e.g., Linux and Mac OS X) however will (by default) change the last modified time to the time that the copied file was written.
Conclusion 3: The DNC files may have been copied using the 'cp' command (which is available on Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X in some form). This (tentative) conclusion is supported by the observation that all of the file last modified times were changed to the apparent time of the copy operation. Other scenarios may produce this pattern of last modified times, but none were immediately apparent to this author at the time that this article was published.
The combination of an NTFS file system and the use of the UNIX 'cp' command is sufficiently unusual to encourage a further search for a more plausible scenario/explanation. One scenario that fits the facts would be that the DNC files were initially copied to a system running Linux (e.g., Ubuntu). The system might have had Linux installed on the system's hard drive, or Linux may have been booted from a USB flash drive; bootable flash drive images with Linux installed on them are widely available.
A review of the DNC file metadata leads to the observation that significant ''time gaps'' appear between various top-level directories and files. In the spreadsheet, we first mark (with x's) places where the top-level directory name changes or the top-level directory is the root (''.'') directory. We further calculate the ''time gap'' which is the difference between the last mod. time of a current entry and its previous entry; from this we subtract an approximation of the transfer time (using our knowledge of average transfer speed) to go from the last mod time to a likely time that the transfer started. We use a cut off of at least 3 seconds to filter out anomalies due to normal network/OS variations. Here are the entries with significant time gaps.
Conclusion 4: The overall time to obtain the DNC files found in the 7z file was 14 minutes; a significant part of that time (13 minutes) is allocated to time gaps that appear between several of the top-level files and directories.
Note that significant time gaps always occur at top-level directory changes (only x's in the ''Top-Level Changed'' column). To put the time gaps in better perspective, here is a listing of all top-level changes. A top-level change is defined as either a change in the top-level directory name, or when the parent directory of a file is the root (''.'') directory.
In the ''Last Mod'' ordered list above, top-level directories and files are intermixed, and they are not in alphabetic order. This pattern can be explained by the use of the UNIX cp command. The cp command copies files in ''directory order'', which on many systems is unsorted and will appear to be somewhat random.
The time gaps that appear in the chronologically ordered listing above could indicate that these files and directories were chosen from a much larger collection of copied files; this larger collection of files may have first been copied en masse via the 'cp -r' command.
Initially when this data was analyzed, the ''time gaps'' were attributed to ''think time'', where it was assumed that the individual who collected the files would copy the files in small batches and in between each batch would need some ''think time'' to find or decide on the next batch to copy. This may be an equally valid way to explain the presence of time gaps at various junctures in the top-level files and folders. However, in this analysis we will assume that a much larger collection of files were initially copied on 7/5/2016; the files in the final .7z file (the subject of this analysis) represent only a small percentage of all the files that were initially collected.
We can estimate the transfer speed of the copy by dividing the total number of bytes transferred by the transfer time. The transfer time is approximated by subtracting the time gap total from the total elapsed time of the copy session. This calculation is shown below.
Conclusion 5: The lengthy time gaps suggest that many additional files were initially copied en masse and that only a small subset of that collection was selected for inclusion into the final 7zip archive file (that was subsequently published by Guccifer 2).
Given the calculations above, if 1.98 GB were copied at a rate of 22.6 MB/s and all the time gaps were attributed to additional file copying then approximately 19.3 GB in total were initially copied. In this hypothetical scenario, the 7zip archive represents only about 10% of the total amount of data that was initially collected.
Conclusion 6: The initial DNC file collection activity began at approximately 2016-07-05 18:39:02 EDT and ended at 2016-07-05 18:53:17 EDT. This conclusion is supported by the observed last modified times and the earlier conclusion that the ex-filtrated files were copied to a computer located in the Eastern Time zone.
Conclusion 7. A transfer rate of 23 MB/s is estimated for this initial file collection operation. This transfer rate can be achieved when files are copied over a LAN or when copying directly from the host computer's hard drive. This rate is too fast to support the hypothesis that the DNC data was initially copied over the Internet (esp. to Romania).
This transfer rate (23 MB/s) is typically seen when copying local data to a fairly slow (USB-2) thumb drive.
To get a sense of where this 23MB/s (23 Mega Bytes per Second) rate falls in the range of supported speeds for various network and media storage technologies, consult the blog entry titled The Need for Speed. That blog entry describes test results which support the conclusions and observations noted above. Below, is one table from from that report.
We can see that the estimated 23 MB/s transfer rate is in the same range as the local copy transfer rates shown above.
We turn our attention to the .rar files embedded in the .7z file. Here is an illustrative example (FEC.rar).
From this listing of FEC.rar above, we make the following observations:
The directories were last modified on 9/1/2016 at approximately 12:50 PM.The file entries are shown with last modified times on7/5/2016 at approximately 6:45 PM.We note that the last modification date for FEC.rar is 12:56:56 PM, EDT on 9/1/2016 after adjusting this time stamp to the Eastern Time zone.As mentioned earlier, the seconds part of the file and directory last modified times are recorded in the .rar file with a 0.1 microsecond resolution, which is typical of an NTFS file system.The file last modified times maintain the 7/15/2016 date '' they were not changed to dates and times on 9/1/2016 when the sub-directories were created.When WinRAR restored the .rar files it preserved the directory last modification times recorded in the .rar file.Recall that the NGP/VAN 7zip file has several .rar files which unpack into top-level directories. We can correlate the last modified times of the .rar files with the last modified times of the directories saved in the .rar files as shown below.
Conclusion 8: The .rar files that ultimately are included in the NGP/VAN 7zip file were built on a computer system where the Eastern Daylight Savings Time (EDT) time zone setting was in force. This conclusion is supported by the observation that if the .rar last modified times are adjusted to EDT they fall into the same range as the last modified times for the directories archived in the .rar files.
In the following table, we combine the last modified times of the directories restored from the .rar files with the last modified times of the .rar files themselves and sort by last modified time. The .rar file last modified times shown have been adjusted so that they reflect Eastern Daylight Savings Time (EDT).
From this data, we make the following observations.
On 9/1/2016, some of the directories that were initially collected on 7/5/2016 were copied to working directories. The working directories were zipped into .rar files that were added to the 7zip file that is the subject of this analysis.The working directories likely reside on an NTFS-formatted file system (they have last modified times with 0.1 microsecond resolution '' typical of NTFS). The NTFS file system is commonly used in modern Windows operating system installations.The DNC directory was the first directory copied to its working directory.Shortly after that, ''DNC.rar'' was created.A series of directories (''DonorAnalysis'' through ''FEC'') were copied to their working directories.Shortly after that, the .rar files were created from those working directories.Approximately 7 minutes later, two more directories were copied to their working directories: ''Reports for Kaine'' and ''Security''.Finally, almost 3 hours after that, the .rar files were created from those two working directoriesWe notice no obvious pattern in the order of choosing the directories to copy to their working copies nor in the creation of .rar files.The varying order of copying directories to their working copies and the observation that they may have been copied in at least three separate batches adds support to the theory that these directories were selected from a larger collection of files and directories that was initially collected on 7/5/2016.Given the lack of uniformity in the metadata, we decided not to try to estimate the transfer times for the copy operations which copied the source directories to their working copies.
A question that comes up at this point is: Why were the directories first copied to a working directory before zipping them into .rar files? Two alternative explanations are offered:
The larger collection of files that were copied on 7/5/2016 reside on a computer running the Linux operating system. They need to be copied to a Windows operating system if programs like WinRAR (which runs only on Windows) are going to be used. In this case they may have been exported from the Linux system via a Samba network share.Or, the larger collection of files that were copied on 7/5/2016 is some distance away from the system where the .rar files will be built; they need to be copied over the Internet. It makes sense to transfer only the directories that have been selected for inclusion into the 7zip file, because copying the entire collection over the Internet may be relatively slow.Neither of the alternatives above suggest that making local working copies was truly necessary, because if we hypothesize that the original collection was exported via a network share, it would seem that this share could have been used directly. That may not have occurred to the person building the .rar files, or perhaps they had some other motivation to make local copies. One idea might be that the local working copies were made to facilitate some internal pruning, but we so no evidence of that '-- the time gaps occur only at the top level (as discussed earlier).
Conclusion 9: The final copy (on 9/1/2016) from the initial file collection to working directories was likely done with a conventional drag-and-drop style of copy. This conclusion is based on the observation that the file last modified times were preserved when copying from the initial collection to the working copies, unlike the first copy operation on 7/5/2016 (which is attributed to the use of the cp command).
Conclusion 10: The final working directories were likely created on an NTFS file system present on a computer running Windows. This conclusion is based on the following observations: (1) the file timestamps have 0.1 micro-second resolution (a characteristic of NTFS file systems), (2) NTFS file systems are widely used on Windows systems, (3) NTFS file systems are typically not used on USB flash drives, and (4) WinRAR is a Windows based program and was likely used to build the .rar files.
At the beginning of this analysis, we noted that the seconds part of the file last modified times that appear at the top-level in the .7z file were all even (a multiple of 2). Windows FAT formatted volumes are constrained to represent times only to the nearest two (2) seconds. USB flash drives are typically formatted FAT or FAT32.
Conclusion 11: The .rar files and plain files that were combined into the final .7z file (the subject of this analysis) were likely copied to a FAT-formatted flash drive first. This conclusion is supported by the observation that the seconds part of all the last modified times are all exact multiples of 2.
House Judiciary to hold hearing on Mueller report featuring former Nixon White House counsel - Axios
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 16:13
The House Judiciary Committee announced Monday that it would hold a series of hearings on the Mueller report beginning on June 10, with a session focused on "President Trump's most overt acts of obstruction," according to Chairman Jerry Nadler.
Why it matters: Amid growing calls to launch impeachment proceedings against Trump, House Democratic leaders are instead opting to continue holding hearings under the umbrella of standard congressional oversight. House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) said on Sunday that he believes impeachment proceedings will begin at some point, but that Democrats must first "do what's necessary to educate the public" on Trump's alleged corruption.
DoJ: Key Mueller witness arrested for transporting child pornography ... again
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 16:22
Adam Schiff's plans to go after Erik Prince may have hit a dead end. After the release of the Mueller report, the House Intelligence chair referred Prince for prosecution on perjury, thank to testimony from George Nader about a meeting Prince allegedly set up in the Seychelles just before Donald Trump's inauguration to set up a back channel with Russia. Unfortunately for Schiff, Nader now has another trial with the Department of Justice '-- his own, for transportation of child pornography:
George Aref Nader, who was a key witness in special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation, was arrested on child pornography charges Monday in New York, federal prosecutors announced Monday.
Nader was arrested upon arrival at John F. Kennedy International Airport for ''transporting visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.'' He previously pleaded guilty to the same charge in 1991, the Justice Department said.
If convicted, he faces a minimum sentence of 15 years in prison and a maximum of 40 years.
The DoJ didn't catch him in the act just this weekend. The warrant for his arrest was issued over a year ago, and apparently resulted from searches conducted when the FBI first interrogated him over the Seychelles meeting. The DoJ sealed the warrant while trying to work with Nader to develop evidence in the Russia-collusion probe:
The complaint against him was unsealed in Virginia federal court on Monday after his arrest. But that complaint was actually filed in April 2018, three months after he was interviewed by FBI agents in January 2018 at Washington Dulles International Airport about a matter ''unrelated to child pornography,'' according to the complaint.
It was during that encounter that Nader was first asked to cooperate with the special counsel.
Three of Nader's iPhones were seized at the time. And at least one of them was later found to contain videos of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct, according to the complaint unsealed Monday.
Er '... anyone else find these circumstances a bit questionable? Nader had to know that the FBI would find the videos on his iPhone when they initially interrogated him at Dulles. Even on its own, that's a powerful incentive to tell investigators what they want to hear, especially when adding in Nader's previous conviction on the same charge. Prosecutors didn't find his testimony compelling enough to deal down or dismiss the charges, but didn't let anyone know this until more than a year later '-- presumably including Adam Schiff, who wanted to prosecute Prince based in part on Nader's testimony produced in this manner. And they kept the charges so secret that Nader was allowed to leave the country despite allegedly trafficking in child porn? Hmmmm.
This tends to explain why Robert Mueller ended up leaving the Prince thread untugged. The Seychelles meeting was not just a nothingburger for the Russia-collusion hypothesis anyway, it tended to disprove it. If the Trump team and Russia had colluded on the election, Prince wouldn't have had to seek out back channels in January 2017 through Nader. The only issue left was whether Prince lied about the meeting to the House Intelligence Committee, but the evidence that Prince lied about the Seychelles meeting came mainly from and/or through Nader.
Mueller must have known full well that Nader would end up being charged again for child pornography, and decided to drop the Prince thread. Don't forget that Mueller had referred Michael Cohen for prosecution over perjury to Congress, so why not Prince? Now we know '-- Nader was going to get discredited by prosecutors, in about as sensational way as possible.
And that will likely put a spike through Schiff's attempts to prosecute Prince. Without Nader, the case against Prince won't hold up well enough to win a conviction. Furthermore, the DoJ might not desire the experience of having the circumstances of Nader's cooperation played out in front of a federal judge, who might demand to know why the FBI didn't move immediately on the child-porn charge even after it became clear that the Russia-collusion hypothesis was a dead end.
This is the second indictment unsealed after the Mueller report of a peripheral character in the special-counsel probe. How many more shoes are yet to drop?
Strauss Kahn - Why Didn't the Manhattan D.A. Cyrus Vance Prosecute the Trumps or Harvey Weinstein? | The New Yorker
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 16:18
In 2010, as Cyrus Vance, Jr., took office as Manhattan's new DistrictAttorney, he promised that ''crimes committed by the affluent, thepowerful, or by public officials will be investigated and prosecuted asvigorously as street crimes.'' Today, his office's failures to prosecutethe affluent and the powerful threaten to define Vance's tenure as D.A.,even as he heads for unopposed relection to his third term, on November7th.
It was reported here last week that, in 2012, Vance ordered his prosecutors to drop a promisingcriminal-fraud investigation against Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump, Jr.,who were suspected of misleading potential buyers of condos in the TrumpSoHo building; the order came after their father's attorney, MarcKasowitz, paid Vance a visit. Soon after Vance's office dropped theinvestigation, Kasowitz donated and raised a combined total of more thanfifty thousand dollars for Vance's relection campaign.
Immediately on the heels of those revelations came explosive reports, in this magazine and in the Times, of the film executive Harvey Weinstein's alleged sexual harassment and assault of multiple women in the course of three decades. The reportsspurred new scrutiny of the D.A.'s decision, in 2015, not to arrest andprosecute Weinstein for a misdemeanor sex crime, based on AmbraBattilana Gutierrez's contemporaneous report to police that he gropedher without her consent in his Tribeca office. Weinstein's defenseattorneys included Vance's former law partner Elkan Abramowitz, who wasalso a donor to his campaign.Weinstein's attorney David Boies (who did not represent Weinstein in thecriminal matter) also donated to Vance in 2015. (Disclosure: I worked as a prosecutor in the Manhattan DistrictAttorney's office thirteen years ago, before Vance was the D.A.)
Vance's stomach for high-profile prosecution was tested early on, in the2011 sexual-assault case against the French politician DominiqueStrauss-Kahn, who, before his arrest, was the head of the InternationalMonetary Fund. A maid who was cleaning the Sofitel New York hotel suitewhere Strauss-Kahn was staying reported to police that he had emergednaked from the bathroom and forced her to perform oral sex. The D.A.'soffice indicted Strauss-Kahn and trumpeted the strength of the case. But the office later disclosed credibility problems with the complainingwitness. Vance reversed course and decided to dismiss all criminalcharges, announcing that his office was ''unable to credit her version ofevents beyond a reasonable doubt, whatever the truth may be about theencounter.''
Many thought that the collapse of the D.S.K. prosecution was the death knell for Vance's young career as the D.A. Criticism of Vance,even by his supporters, centered on his decision to proceed with anindictment of such a high-profile target before the evidence was vettedand nailed down. A broader criticism made by prosecutors in his ownoffice was that, in making choices about what cases to pursue, Vance wastoo enamored of the publicity that they might generate, and that he toooften took discretion away from his prosecutors.
In the wake of what the Times called ''the spectacular botch'' of theD.S.K. case, which so publicly shaped the narrative about Vance's earlydays in office, it is easy to understand that Vance might have felthesitant to charge famous defendants if he was not absolutely certain hecould convict them. That context may help connect the dots between thedecision not to pursue either the Trump siblings in 2012 or HarveyWeinstein in 2015.
Ronan Farrow's investigation, published in this magazine, detailingallegations of Weinstein's harassment and assault, included an audiorecording made during a New York Police Department sting operation theday after Gutierrez's police report. The complainant wore a wire andasked Weinstein why he touched her breast the day before. Weinstein isheard on the tape saying, ''I'm used to that,'' and ''I won't do it again.''The D.A.'s office said at the time that ''a criminal charge is notsupported.'' On Tuesday, amid outrage that the machinery around Weinsteinapparently enabled his abuse and insured the victims' silence, theD.A.'s office appeared to blame the N.Y.P.D. for arranging the sting without giving prosecutors ''the opportunitybefore the meeting to counsel investigators on what was necessary tocapture in order to prove a misdemeanor sex crime.'' ''What emerged fromthe audio,'' the D.A.'s office said, ''was insufficient to prove a crimeunder New York law, which requires prosecutors to establish criminalintent. . . . This, coupled with other proof issues, meant that there was nochoice but to conclude the investigation without criminal charges.''
In a further public break with prosecutors, however, the N.Y.P.D. statedthat the recording ''corroborates the acts that were the basis for thevictim's complaint to the police a day earlier,'' and pointed out thatthe recording was not the only evidence'--namely, there was the testimonyof the victim herself.
A run-of-the-mill misdemeanor case of nonconsensual sexual touching isroutinely prosecuted on far less than a recording in which the accusedadmits to the conduct. The recording, in combination with the victim'stestimony, was significantly more evidence than prosecutors could hopeto have in most groping cases they pursue, even given the imperative toestablish criminal intent. In that context, it seems disingenuous forthe D.A.'s office to claim that there was ''no choice'' but not to bringcharges. There was a choice. It was rooted in prosecutorial discretion,and in the difference between a case against an ordinary person accusedof a sex crime and a person like Harvey Weinstein.
The notion that the D.A. had been too quick to indict Strauss-Kahn in2011 may have cast a shadow over the assessment of the evidence and ofthe likelihood of success. While the D.A.'s office was consideringwhether to charge Weinstein, gossip outlets (some of them likely fed byWeinstein's publicity machine) were reporting that the complainant hadattended one of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's Bunga Bunga parties,was a witness in an ongoing bribery case against him, and had previouslyreported being sexually assaulted by an Italian businessman but laterdeclined to co¶perate with prosecution. These facts do not inherentlyreflect upon the truthfulness of the allegation against Weinstein. Butjuries could, of course, draw inferences. Additionally, on Wednesday, the Times noted that, according to the complainant,Weinstein touched her breast in the context of a conversation about herbecoming a lingerie model; this supposedly complicated for the D.A.'s office the provabilityof his having touched her ''for the purpose of gratifying sexualdesire,'' as the law requires.
Misdemeanor charges against ordinary, often poor, people routinelyresult in a guilty plea, or in charges being kept alive until they haveto be dismissed without conviction. But a man like Weinstein could notbe expected to plead guilty. The risk of bringing charges against him,given the chance of a high-profile debacle, may have seemed worse thanhaving no charges in the case at all.
Like many women with similar allegations, Gutierrez agreed to receivepayment from Weinstein in exchange for not speaking of the incident.Many commentators have jumped on the idea that, but for these kinds of''payoffs'' (which are really a form of legal settlement, under anexplicit or implicit threat to sue or to go public), the serial abusewould have been exposed and addressed sooner. But an alternative tothese private settlements'--civil suits'--is often not possible because thevictims lack funds to pay high legal fees. And, when it comes to famouspeople's misdeeds, obtaining redress through criminal prosecution isoften more difficult than usual. (Police in New York and London are nowlooking into possible new criminal complaints against Weinstein.)
Vance's decisions in the Weinstein and Trump cases may reflect thebelief that public prosecutions are less winnable'--or that the risk oflosing is less tolerable'--when the accused is rich, powerful, and able tomove campaign donations in the right directions. In that impossiblecontext, we shouldn't be so quick to condemn private ''payoffs,'' whichmay create a cloud of suspicion and disrepute. At least thesesettlements manage to give a victim some compensation for harm, when hersilence is all she has to bargain with.
*A previous version of this piece misstated the government entity responsible for Dominique Strauss-Kahn's perp walk and misstated the timing of a statement made by the Manhattan prosecutor's office.
Cyrus Vance Jr. - Wikipedia
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 15:40
This article is about the New York County District Attorney. For his father, the former U.S. Secretary of the Army and Secretary of State, see
Cyrus Vance.
Cyrus Roberts Vance Jr. (born June 14, 1954) is the incumbent New York County District Attorney (Manhattan), and was previously a principal at the law firm of Morvillo, Abramowitz, Grand, Iason, Anello & Bohrer, P.C. He is the son of the late Cyrus Vance, former Secretary of State under President Jimmy Carter. He is known as an outspoken critic of encryption of mobile devices.[2] In October 2018, several news organizations reported that Vance and his office were under investigation for allegedly refusing to prosecute the adult children of Donald Trump following reports of improprieties in real estate transactions.[3]
Youth, family, and education [ edit ] Vance grew up in New York City. He is the son of Grace Elsie (Sloane) and Cyrus Vance Sr., who served as Secretary of the Army under presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson and Deputy Secretary of Defense under President Johnson, then Secretary of State to President Jimmy Carter.
Vance attended the Buckley School and Groton School, and then he went on to graduate from Yale University. He then earned his Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center in 1982. While in law school, he planned campaign trips for Colorado Senator Gary Hart.
He moved to Seattle, Washington in 1989, and back to New York City in 2005. He and his wife, printer and photographer Peggy McDonnell,[4] were married in 1984 and have two children.[5]
Legal career [ edit ] Upon graduating from Georgetown, Vance joined the Manhattan District Attorney's office as an Assistant District Attorney, where he supervised grand jury investigations and prosecuted cases involving murder, organized crime, career criminals, political corruption, international art fraud, and white-collar crime.
In 1988, Vance moved to Seattle because, according to Vance, he wanted to build a name for himself independent of his father's influence.[6] In 1995, Vance co-founded McNaul Ebel Nawrot Helgren & Vance.[7][8] During this time, Vance taught trial advocacy as an adjunct professor at Seattle University School of Law.
In 2004, Vance returned to New York, where he joined Morvillo, Abramowitz, Grand, Iason, Anello & Bohrer, P.C. as a principal.
Vance is admitted to the bar in New York State, Washington State, and Washington, D.C., and to practice before the United States Supreme Court, the U.S. District Courts for the Southern District of New York and Western and Eastern Districts of Washington, and the U.S. Second and Ninth Circuit Courts of Appeals.
Vance is a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers, and is listed in The Best Lawyers in America '' The New York Area's Best Lawyers[9] and New York's Superlawyers '' Manhattan Edition.[10]
District Attorney Vance at a town hall meeting
Public service [ edit ] In addition to serving as an Assistant District Attorney, Vance has been actively involved in sentencing reform policy, conviction integrity and prosecutorial oversight, and has donated his time to the representation of indigent defendants.[citation needed ]
Vance was a consulting expert to the Office of Family and Children Ombudsman in its investigation of the Wenatchee child abuse prosecutions, and served as Special Assistant Attorney General representing the state in investigations and litigation. He has served on sentencing commissions in two states, including New York, where he served on the Governor's Sentencing Commission, which helped overhaul New York's Rockefeller drug laws.[11]
Vance also served, by appointment of the Governor of New York, as a member of the New York State Appellate Division, First Department, Judicial Screening Panel which makes recommendations on judicial appointments.[citation needed ] Vance is a member of the Criminal Justice Council of the New York City Bar Association, the Federal Bar Council, and the New York Council of Defense Lawyers.[citation needed ]
He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Fund for Modern Courts, the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, and the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation. Cyrus Vance Sr., Vance's father died of Alzheimer's Disease in 2002.[12]
2009 Manhattan District Attorney election [ edit ] Vance campaign in May 2009
In 2008, Vance announced his intention to seek the District Attorney's office only if current District Attorney Robert Morgenthau decided to retire.[13] On March 9, 2009, ten days after Morgenthau made his decision to retire public, Vance officially announced his candidacy for the office.[14][15] In an April 8, 2009 appearance on Charlie Rose, Morgenthau said of Vance, ''I think Vance is by far the best qualified. Good lawyer, fair.''[16]Morgenthau officially endorsed Vance on June 25.[17]
Other Democrats who endorsed Vance included former Mayor David Dinkins,[18] Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum,[19]Gloria Steinem,Caroline Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Congresswoman Nydia Velzquez, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, and Barry Scheck and Peter Neufeld of The Innocence Project. The New York Times,[20]New York Daily News,[21]New York Post,[22] and New York Amsterdam News[23] also endorsed Vance.
Vance stated that as Manhattan District Attorney, he would develop a program of ''Community Based Justice'',[24] in which teams of prosecutors would be aligned to specific precincts and communities so as to develop a working relationship with community members, police officers, and local organizations. According to Vance, the Community Based Justice Program would make crime reduction a central measure of performance. Vance has also proposed a plan designed to reduce the year-long case backlog in the New York Criminal Court where the overwhelming majority of criminal cases are brought.[25] In addition to processing cases, Vance has expressed his commitment to establishing a conviction integrity panel to carefully review allegations of wrongful conviction and promoting alternatives to incarceration that do not compromise public safety.[26]
Vance states that he has always been opposed to the death penalty.[27]
Vance emerged victorious after facing former judge and 2005 D.A. candidate Leslie Crocker Snyder, and Richard Aborn, another former Assistant District Attorney and gun control advocate, in the September 15, 2009 Democratic primary.[28] The victory ensured that Vance would become only the fourth person to run the office since 1941, given the traditional absence during Morgenthau's tenure of a Republican backed opponent.[29]
On November 3, 2009, Vance won the general election with a 91 percent share of the votes cast.
Manhattan District Attorney [ edit ] Vance was sworn into office as the Manhattan District Attorney on January 1, 2010. Within a few months, he established or consolidated numerous new bureaus and units in an effort to modernize the District Attorney's Office. Vance's administration established a Conviction Integrity Program,[30] Crime Strategies Unit,[31] Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau,[32] Forensic Sciences/ Cold Case Unit,[33] Hate Crimes Unit,[34] Public Integrity Unit,[35] Special Victims Bureau,[36] and Vehicular Crimes Unit.[37][38]
Vance speaks at a February 2011 press conference
Notable cases [ edit ] Vance's recent successes include the sentencing of a serial rapist to 428 years to life in prison;[39] sentencing of a man to 23 years to life in prison for a domestic violence murder;[40] indictments against 26 individuals living in Manhattan who possessed graphic images of child sexual assault;[41] the sentencing of a man to at least 15 years in prison for a 2000 rape; a sentencing of a man to 25 to life in prison for a 1997 home invasion and murder;[42] an indictment against another man for a 1986 rape and murder;[43] and the guilty plea of a man for attacking a woman in the restroom of a bar in Hell's Kitchen.[44]
Vance has also won convictions in an October 2009 drunk-driving incident that killed 11-year-old Leandra Rosado, resulting in the creation of Leandra's Law; and a case of two men in a 2005 murder-for-hire plot. In January 2011, the District Attorney's Forensic Sciences/ Cold Case Unit announced an indictment against noted serial killer Rodney Alcala for two Manhattan homicides in the 1970s.
Vance at June 2011 press conference on child assault
Vance's newly created Major Economic Crimes Bureau has won convictions in the $120 million-dollar art fraud prosecution of the Salander-O'Reilly Gallery, the gallery's president Lawrence Salander and director Leigh Morse, in which Robert De Niro was one of the principal witnesses for the prosecution;[45] a $100 million-dollar securities fraud scheme in which Yale University was one of the victims;[46] a $100 million-dollar mortgage fraud case;[47] and a $7 million-dollar Ponzi scheme.[48] The District Attorney's Office in June 2011 announced indictments in a conspiracy involving 11 corporations who evaded U.S. economic sanctions on Iran by funneling tens of millions of dollars through Manhattan banks.[49] To date, Vance's administration has brought hundreds of millions of dollars in settlements to New York City.[50]
Cyrus Vance prosecuted programmer Sergey Aleynikov for duplicating computer code from Goldman Sachs, following the reversal of his federal conviction by the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The state case found Aleynikov guilty. However, on July 6, 2015, a New York State Supreme Court justice overturned that decision, but an appellate court reinstated the jury's guilty verdict on January 24, 2017. 148 AD3d 77 [1st Dept 2017], affirmed, 31 NY3d 383 [2018].
Abacus Federal Savings Bank case [ edit ] In 2009, Abacus Federal Savings Bank, a small Chinese-American family-run bank in New York City's Chinatown, self-reported a mortgage fraud committed by an ex-employee to its regulators. It led Cyrus Vance's office to later accuse the bank itself of mortgage fraud. In an unusual move characterized by critics as an effort at at grandstanding, Vance's office orchestrated a parade of ex-employees of the bank in a chain, handcuffed to each other, in front of reporters.[51] After Vance spent five years and $10 million prosecuting the bank for larceny, the bank and its employees were found not guilty on all 80 charges.
The bank was the only New York bank so charged during the Great Recession, although Vance said that Citibank, among others, had behaved badly. The episode was covered in a feature-length documentary by Steve James, Abacus: Small Enough to Jail, which characterized Vance as throwing the bank's owners under the bus in an effort to appear tough on white-collar crime.[52] The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2016,[53] was broadcast on PBS Frontline in 2017, and was nominated for an Oscar.[51][54]
Motor vehicle prosecution [ edit ] Transportation advocates have criticized Vance's office for what they see as a history of failing to fully prosecute motor vehicle offenses that result in death or serious injury to pedestrians and cyclists.
In July 2010, no charges were filed when an MTA tow truck struck and killed a seven-year-old boy standing on the sidewalk.[55] In October 2010, Vance declined to press charges in the dooring death of Marcus Ewing, on the rationale that, because the engine was not running and because the person who opened the door into Ewing's path did not have the keys in his possession, that person could not be prosecuted as a driver.[56]
In August 2013, a cab driver hopped a curb, injuring several pedestrians and severing the leg of a British tourist. Despite a history of driving offenses, and admitting that he intentionally hit the gas before entering the sidewalk, the driver was able to regain his cab license, and after a two-month investigation, no charges were filed.[57]
In October 2014, Vance's office offered a plea to a driver accused of intentionally striking a cyclist with his car. The deal reduced charges of third-degree assault, punishable by up to a year in jail, to leaving the scene of an accident with property damage. The motorist paid a $250 fine.[58]
The lack of prosecutorial aggressiveness from Vance's office, in spite of recently passed vulnerable user laws[59] and Vance's own initiatives[60] has led to widespread media commentary on whether New York City cyclists can reasonably expect protection from the justice system.[61][62]
Additionally, during an investigation into faded white flags flown over the Brooklyn Bridge in July 2014, Vance's office subpoenaed a farcical Twitter account, purporting to be the bicycle industry lobby, which had jokingly taken responsibility for the flag swap.[63] The flags were later revealed to be the work of German artists.[64]
Dominique Strauss-Kahn case [ edit ] Vance initially came under criticism by the media for his handling of the Dominique Strauss-Kahn sexual assault case, where the French head of the International Monetary Fund was arrested based on the accusations of an employee of the Sofitel hotel.[65] However, Vance was praised by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg,[66] former Mayor Ed Koch, former Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau,[67] and other prominent litigators and government officials for adhering to prosecutorial protocol and acting "with integrity".[68][further explanation needed ] Vance has also been applauded in editorials by the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and the New York Daily News for making a "tough but fair and just call"[clarification needed ] in "an exceptional case" in which a woman made a "credible" accusation against a very powerful man.[69][70][71][72] The Wall Street Journal wrote: "DSK got neither more nor less than he deserved'--something for which he can blame, and thank, Cy Vance and America's justice system."[70] Nevertheless, he is forced to drop all charges against the defendant on August 11, admitting that he could not prove beyond reasonable doubt the credibility of the accuser Nafissatou Diallo.[73][74]
Paul Manafort [ edit ] On March 13, 2019 Vance filed 16 indictments charging mortgage fraud against Paul Manafort, former chairman of Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign. Vance said the charges stemmed from an investigation launched in March 2017.[75]
Political contributions and non-prosecutions [ edit ] This section
needs expansion.
You can help by adding to it. ( October 2017 )From August 2017, allegations appeared across various news media outlets concerning Vance's associations, and certain contributions made to his office in relation to past cases. Under scrutiny are the Manhattan DA's handling of allegations of sexual assault against film producer Harvey Weinstein,[76] and allegations of his handling of improper conduct by members of the Trump family around the Trump SoHo development.[77][78] Critics have suggested that contributions to the DA around these times were directly linked to Vance not prosecuting these cases. Vance has defended the actions of his office, citing insufficient evidence to prosecute in each case.[79]
In March 2018, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that the New York State attorney general will investigate the Manhattan district attorney's handling of a 2015 sexual abuse case involving disgraced media mogul Harvey Weinstein.[80] NYPD investigators who investigated the 2015 case believed that the sexual abuse case was strong enough to be prosecuted, but Vance opted not to prosecute the case.[81] According to The Guardian, the investigators were at the time under the belief that Vance would undermine the case, given that he had previously dropped a similar case against Dominique Strauss-Kahn.[81] NYPD investigators had set up a sting involving the alleged victim where she recorded Weinstein making, what CNN described as, "potentially incriminating comments".[82][83] The alleged victim was heard asking Weinstein, "Why did you touch my breast?". Weinstein said he was sorry and "I'm used to that", as well as "I won't do it again."[83]
Gravity knives [ edit ] Vance has heavily prosecuted possession of gravity knives, disproportionately indicting defendants of color. The law banning them, which was interpreted broadly by Vance and is largely enforced only in Manhattan, was repealed by the state legislature but the repeal was vetoed by Governor Cuomo. Despite the 70,000 people arrested under it in ten years, Vance declined to take action against the more than 100 hardware stores selling the knives in the city.[84] On March 27, 2019, in Cracco v. Vance, No. 14 Civ. 8235 (SDNY), a federal judge ruled DA Vance's office had applied the law unconstitutionally, resulting a in a lack of notice of prohibited behavior as well as allowing for arbitrary and discriminatory enforcement.[85]
Affiliations [ edit ] Vance serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Police Athletic League of New York City, a non-profit youth development agency that helps inner-city children.[86]
References [ edit ] ^ "Attorney Detail: Cyrus R. Vance". eCourts. New York State Unified Court System . Retrieved July 27, 2017 . ^ Vance Jr., Cyrus R. (November 2015). Report of the Manhattan District Attorney's Office on smartphone encryption and public safety (PDF) (Report). Manhattan District Attorney's Office. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 20, 2015 . Retrieved November 19, 2015 . ^ FBI looking at Manhattan district attorney's office over potential undue influence in handling of cases (Report). ^ "Peggy McDonnell Becomes the Bride of Cyrus R. Vance Jr. in Peapack, N.J." The New York Times. May 6, 1984 . Retrieved November 19, 2015 . ^ Eligon, John (August 17, 2008). "Getting Ready for a Race, Just in Case There's a Spot". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved January 24, 2019 . ^ Eligon, John (August 18, 2008). "Getting Ready for a Race, Just in Case There's a Spot". The New York Times . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ "About McNaul Ebel". McNaul Ebel Narwot & Helgren LLC. 2008. Archived from the original on October 25, 2009 . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ "Cyrus R. Vance, Jr". Morvillo, Abramowitz, Grand, Iason, Anello & Bohrer, P.C. 2009. Archived from the original on January 1, 2009 . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ "Advertisement" (PDF) . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . [permanent dead link ] ^ "Cyrus Vance, Jr". Key Professional Media, Inc. Archived from the original on August 29, 2009 . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services. "Sentencing Commission Calls for Drug Law Reform". Archived from the original on October 4, 2010 . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ ArlingtonCemetery.net (2009). "Cyrus Roberts Vance, Lieutenant, United States Navy and Public Official". Michael Robert Patterson . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ "Vance's Chance to Succeed Morgy?". New York Magazine. February 18, 2008 . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ Trotta, Daniel (February 27, 2009). "Manhattan DA Morgenthau to Retire after 35 Years". Reuters . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ Press Release (March 9, 2009). "Cy Vance Announces Candidacy For Manhattan DA". Cyrus Vance for Manhattan DA. Archived from the original on September 3, 2009 . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ Charlie Rose Show (April 8, 2009). "A conversation with Robert Morgenthau". Charlie Rose. Archived from the original on April 12, 2009 . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ Elingon, John (June 25, 2009). "Manhattan District Attorney Endorses a Candidate to Succeed Him". The New York Times . Retrieved June 25, 2009 . ^ Elizabeth Benjamin (April 30, 2009). "Dinkins Likes Mike, But Will Back Thompson For Mayor". New York Daily News. Archived from the original on May 3, 2009 . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ Michael Saul (April 24, 2009). "Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum backs Cy Vance Jr. in Manhattan District Attorney contest". New York Daily News . Retrieved May 13, 2009 . ^ "Manhattan's District Attorney". The New York Times. August 14, 2009 . Retrieved July 7, 2011 . ^ "Daily News Endorses Cy Vance for DA". Nypolitics.com . Retrieved July 7, 2011 . ^ "New York Post September 2, 2009". New York Post. August 31, 2009 . Retrieved July 7, 2011 . ^ Free Online Access (September 14, 2009). "New York Amsterdam News September 7, 2009". Amsterdamnews.com. Archived from the original on January 17, 2013 . Retrieved July 7, 2011 . ^ Walder, Noeleen G. (September 14, 2009). "Vance: 'Community-Based Justice ' ". New York Law Journal. ^ Caher, John (October 28, 2011). "Efforts to Cut Criminal Backlog in Manhattan Produce Results". New York Law Journal. ^ "Letter '' Alternatives to Jail". The New York Times. October 22, 2008 . Retrieved July 2, 2009 . ^ Saul, Michael (April 23, 2009). "District Attorney hopefuls trash rival Snyder's flip on execution". New York Daily News . Retrieved May 12, 2009 . ^ Chen, David W.; Eligon, John (September 16, 2009). "Vance Captures Nomination for District Attorney". The New York Times . Retrieved September 16, 2009 . ^ "Vance is winner in primary vote for prosecutor". The New York Times. September 16, 2009. p. 1. ^ Eligon, John (March 4, 2010). "Prosecutor in Manhattan Will Monitor Convictions". The New York Times. ^ Eligon, John (May 25, 2010). "Top Prosecutor Creates a Unit On Crime Trends". The New York Times. ^ Rothfeld, Michael (December 30, 2011). "D.A. Cracks Down On Internet Crime". Wall Street Journal. ^ Baker, Al (June 14, 2011). "In Manhattan, District Attorney Sees DNA as Tool to Solve Cold Cases". The New York Times. ^ "D.A. Vance Announces Hate Crime Unit". SoHo Journal. ^ Rubenfeld, Samuel (October 20, 2010). "Manhattan DA Announces New Unit To Investigate Public Corruption". Wall Street Journal. ^ [1] ^ "Manhattan D.A. Expands Vehicular Crimes Unit". NY1. May 27, 2010. Archived from the original on May 30, 2010. ^ Eligon, John (May 28, 2010). "Prosecutors Get Along, and a Crime Unit Gets a Lift". The New York Times. ^ Ross, Barbara (December 12, 2011). "Manhattan serial rapist Vincent Heyward socked with 428-year sentence Victims describe the lasting horror of his brutal knife-point attacks". New York Daily News. ^ "Jesus Alejandro Sentenced For Brutal Murder Of Girlfriend". CBS New York. November 28, 2011. ^ "Manhattan DA: Massive Child Cyber Porn Sting Ends With 26 Arrests". CBS New York. June 14, 2011. ^ Vance, Cyrus R. Jr. (June 29, 2011). "District Attorney Vance announces sentencing in 1997 cold case murder". The New York County District Attorney's Office. ^ Vance, Cyrus R. Jr. (July 6, 2011). "Man indicted in 24-year-old "cold case" rape murder". The New York County District Attorney's Office. ^ Vance, Cyrus R. Jr. (July 18, 2011). "District Attorney Vance announces guilty plea in brutal attack on woman in Hell's Kitchen bar". The New York County District Attorney's Office. ^ Boroff, Philip (March 19, 2011). "De Niro Testifies Against Dealer Accused of Stealing Dad's Art". Bloomberg. ^ Eligon, John (July 19, 2011). "Lawyer Convicted in $100 Million Stock Swindle". The New York Times. ^ Li, David K. (September 21, 2010). "$100M mortgage scam con gets jail time". New York Post. Archived from the original on January 22, 2012. ^ "Money Manager De Chimay Sentenced to Three to Nine Years by New York Judge". Bloomberg. March 23, 2011. ^ Becker, Jo (June 20, 2011). "Iranian Shipper Accused of Sneaking Money Through N.Y. Banks". The New York Times. ^ Grace, Melissa (September 25, 2010). "Virginia girl found eating herself in cage in mobile home; parents Brian and Shannon Gore charged". Daily News. New York. ^ a b "After the Crash, Big Banks Got Bailouts. Abacus Faced Charges.", September 12, 2016. ^ Seitz, Matt Zoller (May 26, 2017). "Abacus: Small Enough to Jail". Roger Ebert.com . Retrieved March 20, 2019 . ^ [2] ^ "Abacus: Small Enough to Jail", Retrieved September 13, 2017. ^ Walsh, Kenneth M. (July 31, 2010). "Bridge tragedy". The New York Post. ^ Vaccaro, Sam; White, Adam (February 4, 2011). "Gothamist: How to Kill a Cyclist and Walk Away". Vaccaro & White. ^ Aaron, Brad (November 14, 2013). "No Charges From Cy Vance for Cab Driver Who Maimed Tourist Sian Green". Streetsblog NYC. ^ Aaron, Brad (October 22, 2013). "DA Cy Vance: $250 Fine for Motorist Accused of Deliberately Striking Cyclist". Streetsblog NYC. ^ Signore, John Del (October 12, 2010). "New Law Inspired By Chinatown Van Crash Takes Effect". Gothamist. Archived from the original on October 30, 2014. ^ Norvell, Wiley (May 27, 2010). "Statement on Manhattan DA Cy Vance's New Traffic Safety Initiatives". Transportation Alternatives. ^ Signore, John Del (February 4, 2011). "How to Kill a Cyclist and Walk Away". Gothamist. Archived from the original on January 28, 2016. ^ Duane, Daniel (November 9, 2013). "Is It O.K. to Kill Cyclists?". The New York Times. ^ Yakas, Ben (August 8, 2014). "Manhattan DA Subpoenas Parody Twitter Account Over Obvious Brooklyn Bridge White Flag Joke". Gothamist. Archived from the original on October 10, 2014. ^ "Mystery of white flags on Brooklyn Bridge solved as German artists claim responsibility". The Telegraph. Associated Press. August 13, 2014. ^ "Affaire DSK: l'enquªte se poursuit" (in French). Radio T(C)l(C)vision Suisse. July 6, 2011. ^ Eligon, John; Rashbaum, William K. (July 5, 2011). "Strauss-Kahn Lawyers and Prosecution Meet". The New York Times. ^ Eligon, John (July 7, 2011). "Morgenthau Comes to Vance's Defense". The New York Times. ^ "NY1 Online: NY1 Wise Guys 7/5/11". NY1. July 5, 2011. [permanent dead link ] ^ Nocera, Joe (July 4, 2011). "The D.A. Did the Right Thing". The New York Times. ^ a b "The Judgment on DSK". Wall Street Journal. August 24, 2011. ^ "DA Cy Vance made tough but fair and just call to dismiss charges against Dominique Strauss-Kahn". New York Daily News. August 23, 2011. ^ "The Strauss-Kahn Case". The New York Times. August 23, 2011. ^ "Dominique Strauss-Kahn walks free from New York court". August 23, 2011. ^ "Dominique Strauss-Kahn prosecutor tells why he dropped case". January 19, 2012. ^ Samuels, Brett (March 13, 2019). "Manafort indicted by Manhattan DA on mortgage fraud charges". The Hill . Retrieved March 14, 2019 . ^ http://www.businessinsider.com/cyrus-vance-harvey-weinstein-audio-trump-2017-10?IR=T ^ "Manhattan DA ignores questions regarding concern over donations". The Guardian. October 7, 2017. ^ "How Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump, Jr., Avoided a Criminal Indictment". The New Yorker. October 4, 2017. ^ "Vance Returned Trump Lawyer's Donation After Reporters' Questions". New York Times. October 4, 2017. ^ Joseph, Sandra Gonzalez and Elizabeth. "District attorney who didn't prosecute Weinstein will be investigated". CNN . Retrieved March 20, 2018 . ^ a b Helmore, Edward (March 17, 2018). "NYPD reportedly hid Weinstein accuser, fearing district attorney would sink case". the Guardian . Retrieved May 8, 2018 . ^ Joseph, Sandra Gonzalez and Elizabeth. "District attorney who didn't prosecute Weinstein will be investigated". CNN . Retrieved May 8, 2018 . ^ a b Stelter, Lisa France and Brian. "Harvey Weinstein accused of rape in New Yorker story". CNNMoney . Retrieved May 8, 2018 . ^ Campbell, Jon (October 24, 2017). "New York Just Saved a Law Used to Jail Thousands of Minorities". The Daily Beast . Retrieved October 24, 2017 . ^ Offenhartz, Jake. "Federal Judge Rules Controversial Gravity Knife Law Is Too Vague To Enforce". Gothamist . Retrieved March 29, 2019 . ^ "Board of Directors". Police Athletic League NYC. Archived from the original on July 27, 2011 . Retrieved July 7, 2011 . External links [ edit ] Manhattan District Attorney's Office (official website)Cyrus Vance For District Attorney (official campaign website)Morvillo, Abramowitz, Grand, Isaon, Anello & Bohrer, P.C. Website on Cyrus VanceCommission on Sentencing Reform Recommendation Announcement'In Manhattan, District Attorney Sees DNA as Tool to Solve Cold Cases', Al Baker, The New York Times, June 14, 2011
Prosecutors Asking If Jeffrey Epstein Broke Federal Law | Law & Crime
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 03:39
Federal prosecutors are reportedly speaking with victims of billionaire pedophile Jeffrey Epstein and asking them if his alleged crimes crossed state lines.
Spencer Kuvin, an attorney for three women, said that he spoke with an assistant U.S. Attorney. The U.S. Attorney appeared to focus on what Epstein's victims want the government to do and whether Epstein's alleged actions constitute federal crimes.
''I think they're asking it, because as a federal prosecutor you want to know whether this is a potential federal crime or state crime,'' Kuvin told The Daily Beast in a new report. ''If they determined that it did [cross state lines], they have potential for prosecuting it.''
Epstein's attorneys declined to comment in that story. He got a remarkably beneficial deal when he pleaded guilty in a Florida court in 2008 to solicitation of prostitution and procurement of minors for prostitution.
It turned out that this was part of a secret sweetheart deal with then-U.S. Attorney (current labor secretary) Alexander Acosta, according to a bombshell Miami Herald report. Victims were kept in the dark about the agreement and alleged co-conspirators were given immunity. Epstein served 13 months, but he was able to do a work release program six days a week, even though sex offenders didn't qualify for that.
This deal barely reflected the extent of the alleged wrongdoing. At the time, the Herald said they found about 80 women who claimed to have been sexually abused by Epstein from 2001 to 2006. The defendant allegedly committed abuse at his homes in Florida, New York City, New Mexico, and the Caribbean. A judge determined that the agreement violated federal law.
Kuvin would go on to say that if Epstein can't be charged federally, one client a) wants the entire Epstein file to go public and b) wants Acosta to ''step down.''
[Mugshot via Florida Department of Law Enforcement]
Dirty Cop Robert Mueller Selectively Edited Trump Lawyer Voice Mail '' True Pundit
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 11:47
The Mueller Report (which debunked the media's Russia Collusion Hoax and cleared Trump of obstruction) contains a transcript of a voicemail left by an attorney for Donald Trump to an attorney for former national security adviser Michael Flynn, that is selectively edited to look incriminating.('...)
This is a November 2017 voice mail message left by Trump's attorney John Dowd for Flynn's attorney, Rob Kelner:
I understand your situation, but let me see if I can't state it in starker terms. . . . [I]t wouldn't surprise me if you've gone on to make a deal with '... the government. '... [I]f . .. there's information that implicates the President, then we've got a national security issue, . . . so, you know, . . . we need some kind of heads up. Um, just for the sake of protecting all our interests if we can '.... [R]emember what we've always said about the ' President and his feelings toward Flynn and, that still remains '....
But now you can read the full text of the message, which the Dirty Cops did not want you to see :
Hey, Rob, uhm, this is John again. Uh, maybe, I-I-I-'m-I'm sympathetic; I understand your situation, but let me see if I can't '... state it in '... starker terms. If you have '... and it wouldn't surprise me if you've gone on to make a deal with, and, uh, work with the government, uh '... I understand that you can't join the joint defense; so that's one thing. If, on the other hand, we have, there's information that '... implicates the President, then we've got a national security issue, or maybe a national security issue, I don't know '... some issue, we got to-we got to deal with, not only for the President, but for the country. So '... uh '... you know, then-then, you know, we need some kind of heads up. Um, just for the sake of '... protecting all our interests, if we can, without you having to give up any '... confidential information. So, uhm, and if it's the former, then, you know, remember what we've always said about the President and his feelings toward Flynn and, that still remains, but '-- Well, in any event, uhm, let me know, and, uh, I appreciate your listening and taking the time. Thanks, Pal.
You see what Mueller did there? You see what he deliberately left out?
His transcript leaves the impression that Dowd is doing something inappropriate, is going behind everyone's back looking to get information, even after the door closed on cooperation due to Flynn's decision to make a deal with the special counsel. '' READ MORE
2020
Biden Faces Conflict of Interest Questions That Are Being Promoted by Trump and Allies - The New York Times
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 14:50
Image Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. in 2017 in Kiev, Ukraine. The renewed scrutiny of Hunter Biden's work in Ukraine is entangled in politics on both sides of the Atlantic. Credit Credit Genya Savilov/Agence France-Presse '-- Getty Images WASHINGTON '-- It was a foreign policy role Joseph R. Biden Jr. enthusiastically embraced during his vice presidency: browbeating Ukraine's notoriously corrupt government to clean up its act. And one of his most memorable performances came on a trip to Kiev in March 2016, when he threatened to withhold $1 billion in United States loan guarantees if Ukraine's leaders did not dismiss the country's top prosecutor, who had been accused of turning a blind eye to corruption in his own office and among the political elite.
The pressure campaign worked. The prosecutor general, long a target of criticism from other Western nations and international lenders, was soon voted out by the Ukrainian Parliament.
Among those who had a stake in the outcome was Hunter Biden, Mr. Biden's younger son, who at the time was on the board of an energy company owned by a Ukrainian oligarch who had been in the sights of the fired prosecutor general.
Hunter Biden was a Yale-educated lawyer who had served on the boards of Amtrak and a number of nonprofit organizations and think tanks, but lacked any experience in Ukraine and just months earlier had been discharged from the Navy Reserve after testing positive for cocaine. He would be paid as much as $50,000 per month in some months for his work for the company, Burisma Holdings.
Image Hunter Biden, Mr. Biden's son, served on the board of Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian energy company under investigation. Credit Teresa Kroeger/Getty Images for World Food Program The broad outlines of how the Bidens' roles intersected in Ukraine have been known for some time. The former vice president's campaign said that he had always acted to carry out United States policy without regard to any activities of his son, that he had never discussed the matter with Hunter Biden and that he learned of his son's role with the Ukrainian energy company from news reports.
But new details about Hunter Biden's involvement, and a decision this year by the current Ukrainian prosecutor general to reverse himself and reopen an investigation into Burisma, have pushed the issue back into the spotlight just as the senior Mr. Biden is beginning his 2020 presidential campaign.
They show how Hunter Biden and his American business partners were part of a broad effort by Burisma to bring in well-connected Democrats during a period when the company was facing investigations backed not just by domestic Ukrainian forces but by officials in the Obama administration. Hunter Biden's work for Burisma prompted concerns among State Department officials at the time that the connection could complicate Vice President Biden's diplomacy in Ukraine, former officials said.
''I have had no role whatsoever in relation to any investigation of Burisma, or any of its officers,'' Hunter Biden said Wednesday in a statement. ''I explicitly limited my role to focus on corporate governance best practices to facilitate Burisma's desire to expand globally.''
Hunter Biden, who left Burisma's board last month, was one of many politically prominent Americans of both major parties who made money in Ukraine over the last decade. In several cases '-- most notably that of Paul Manafort, President Trump's former campaign chairman '-- that business came under criminal investigation that exposed a seedy side of the lucrative Western consulting industry in Ukraine.
Hunter
Biden
Served on the board of Burisma Holdings
Mr. Biden, the son of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., started on the board of Burisma Holdings, an energy company owned by a Ukrainian oligarch, in the spring of 2014.
He was paid about $50,000 per month through accounts linked to Burisma. He stepped down last month when his term expired.
Mykola
Zlochevsky
Owner of
Burisma Holdings
Mr. Zlochevsky had served in the government of the former Ukrainian president Viktor F. Yanukovych.
He fled the country not long after the collapse of Mr. Yanukovych's government in 2014, and the Ukrainian prosecutor general's office opened multiple investigations into him and his businesses.
Viktor
Shokin
Former prosecutor general of Ukraine
Mr. Shokin's office had oversight of investigations into Mr. Zlochevsky and his businesses, including Burisma.
Some in the Obama administration supported the investigations, but worried Mr. Shokin was not pursuing them. He was accused of turning a blind eye to corruption in his office and among the political elite.
Joseph R.
Biden Jr.
Then-Vice
President
In March 2016, Mr. Biden issued an ultimatum to Ukraine's Parliament to dismiss Mr. Shokin, or the United States would withhold $1 billion in loan guarantees. Mr. Shokin was voted out by Parliament.
No evidence has surfaced that the former vice president intentionally tried to benefit his son.
Yuriy
Lutsenko
Subsequent prosecutor general of Ukraine
Mr. Lutsenko initially continued investigating Mr. Zlochevsky and Burisma, but cleared him of all charges within 10 months of taking office.
The prosecutor general reversed himself and reopened an investigation into Burisma this year. Some see his decision as an effort to curry favor with the Trump administration.
Rudolph W.
Giuliani
President Trump's personal lawyer
Mr. Giuliani has spearheaded the effort among conservatives to publicize and encourage the new investigation in Ukraine.
Mr. Giuliani said he got involved because he was seeking to counter the Mueller investigation with evidence that Democrats had conspired with sympathetic Ukrainians to help initiate what became the special counsel's inquiry.
Mr. Biden, the son of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., started on the board of Burisma Holdings, an energy company owned by a Ukrainian oligarch, in the spring of 2014.
He was paid about $50,000 per month through accounts linked to Burisma. He stepped down last month when his term expired.
Hunter
Biden
Served on the board of Burisma Holdings
Mr. Zlochevsky had served in the government of the former Ukrainian president Viktor F. Yanukovych.
He fled the country not long after the collapse of Mr. Yanukovych's government in 2014, and the Ukrainian prosecutor general's office opened multiple investigations into him and his businesses.
Mykola
Zlochevsky
Owner of Burisma Holdings
Mr. Shokin's office had oversight of investigations into Mr. Zlochevsky and his businesses, including Burisma.
Some in the Obama administration supported the investigations, but worried Mr. Shokin was not pursuing them. He was accused of turning a blind eye to corruption in his office and among the political elite.
Viktor
Shokin
Former prosecutor general of Ukraine
In March 2016, Mr. Biden issued an ultimatum to Ukraine's Parliament to dismiss Mr. Shokin, or the United States would withhold $1 billion in loan guarantees. Mr. Shokin was voted out by Parliament.
No evidence has surfaced that the former vice president intentionally tried to benefit his son.
Joseph R.
Biden Jr.
Then-Vice
President
Mr. Lutsenko initially continued investigating Mr. Zlochevsky and Burisma, but cleared him of all charges within 10 months of taking office.
The prosecutor general reversed himself and reopened an investigation into Burisma this year. Some see his decision as an effort to curry favor with the Trump administration.
Yuriy
Lutsenko
Subsequent
prosecutor general of Ukraine
Mr. Giuliani has spearheaded the effort among conservatives to publicize and encourage the new investigation in Ukraine.
Mr. Giuliani said he got involved because he was seeking to counter the Mueller investigation with evidence that Democrats had conspired with sympathetic Ukrainians to help initiate what became the special counsel's inquiry.
Rudolph W.
Giuliani
President Trump's personal lawyer
Hunter
Biden
Served on the board of Burisma Holdings
Mr. Biden, the son of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., started on the board of Burisma Holdings, an energy company owned by a Ukrainian oligarch, in the spring of 2014.
He was paid about $50,000 per month through accounts linked to Burisma. He stepped down last month when his term expired.
Mykola
Zlochevsky
Owner of
Burisma Holdings
Mr. Zlochevsky had served in the government of the former Ukrainian president Viktor F. Yanukovych.
He fled the country not long after the collapse of Mr. Yanukovych's government in 2014, and the Ukrainian prosecutor general's office opened multiple investigations into him and his businesses.
Viktor
Shokin
Former prosecutor
general of Ukraine
Mr. Shokin's office had oversight of investigations into Mr. Zlochevsky and his businesses, including Burisma.
Some in the Obama administration supported the investigations, but worried Mr. Shokin was not pursuing them. He was accused of turning a blind eye to corruption in his office and among the political elite.
Yuriy
Lutsenko
Subsequent prosecutor general of Ukraine
Mr. Lutsenko initially continued investigating Mr. Zlochevsky and Burisma, but cleared him of all charges within 10 months of taking office.
The prosecutor general reversed himself and reopened an investigation into Burisma this year. Some see his decision as an effort to curry favor with the Trump administration.
Rudolph W.
Giuliani
President Trump's personal lawyer
Mr. Giuliani has spearheaded the effort among conservatives to publicize and encourage the new investigation in Ukraine.
Mr. Giuliani said he got involved because he was seeking to counter the Mueller investigation with evidence that Democrats had conspired with sympathetic Ukrainians to help initiate what became the special counsel's inquiry.
Joseph R.
Biden Jr.
Then-Vice
President
In March 2016, Mr. Biden issued an ultimatum to Ukraine's Parliament to dismiss Mr. Shokin, or the United States would withhold $1 billion in loan guarantees. Mr. Shokin was voted out by Parliament.
No evidence has surfaced that the former vice president intentionally tried to benefit his son.
Mykola
Zlochevsky
Owner of
Burisma Holdings
Mr. Zlochevsky had served in the government of the former Ukrainian president Viktor F. Yanukovych.
He fled the country not long after the collapse of Mr. Yanukovych's government in 2014, and the Ukrainian prosecutor general's office opened multiple investigations into him and his businesses.
Viktor
Shokin
Former prosecutor
general of Ukraine
Mr. Shokin's office had oversight of investigations into Mr. Zlochevsky and his businesses, including Burisma.
Some in the Obama administration supported the investigations, but worried Mr. Shokin was not pursuing them. He was accused of turning a blind eye to corruption in his office and among the political elite.
Hunter
Biden
Served on the board of
Burisma Holdings
Mr. Biden, the son of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., started on the board of Burisma Holdings, an energy company owned by a Ukrainian oligarch, in the spring of 2014.
He was paid about $50,000 per month through accounts linked to Burisma. He stepped down last month when his term expired.
Yuriy
Lutsenko
Subsequent prosecutor
general of Ukraine
Mr. Lutsenko initially continued investigating Mr. Zlochevsky and Burisma, but cleared him of all charges within 10 months of taking office.
The prosecutor general reversed himself and reopened an investigation into Burisma this year. Some see his decision as an effort to curry favor with the Trump administration.
Rudolph W.
Giuliani
President Trump's
personal lawyer
Mr. Giuliani has spearheaded the effort among conservatives to publicize and encourage the new investigation in Ukraine.
Mr. Giuliani said he got involved because he was seeking to counter the Mueller investigation with evidence that Democrats had conspired with sympathetic Ukrainians to help initiate what became the special counsel's inquiry.
Joseph R.
Biden Jr.
Then-Vice
President
In March 2016, Mr. Biden issued an ultimatum to Ukraine's Parliament to dismiss Mr. Shokin, or the United States would withhold $1 billion in loan guarantees. Mr. Shokin was voted out by Parliament.
No evidence has surfaced that the former vice president intentionally tried to benefit his son.
But the renewed scrutiny of Hunter Biden's experience in Ukraine has also been fanned by allies of Mr. Trump. They have been eager to publicize and even encourage the investigation, as well as other Ukrainian inquiries that serve Mr. Trump's political ends, underscoring the Trump campaign's concern about the electoral threat from the former vice president's presidential campaign.
The Trump team's efforts to draw attention to the Bidens' work in Ukraine, which is already yielding coverage in conservative media, has been led partly by Rudolph W. Giuliani, who served as a lawyer for Mr. Trump in the investigation by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III. Mr. Giuliani's involvement raises questions about whether Mr. Trump is endorsing an effort to push a foreign government to proceed with a case that could hurt a political opponent at home.
Mr. Giuliani has discussed the Burisma investigation, and its intersection with the Bidens, with the ousted Ukrainian prosecutor general and the current prosecutor. He met with the current prosecutor multiple times in New York this year. The current prosecutor general later told associates that, during one of the meetings, Mr. Giuliani called Mr. Trump excitedly to brief him on his findings, according to people familiar with the conversations.
Mr. Giuliani declined to comment on any such phone call with Mr. Trump, but acknowledged that he has discussed the matter with the president on multiple occasions. Mr. Trump, in turn, recently suggested he would like Attorney General William P. Barr to look into the material gathered by the Ukrainian prosecutors '-- echoing repeated calls from Mr. Giuliani for the Justice Department to investigate the Bidens' Ukrainian work and other connections between Ukraine and the United States.
Mr. Giuliani said he got involved because he was seeking to counter the Mueller investigation with evidence that Democrats conspired with sympathetic Ukrainians to help initiate what became the special counsel's inquiry.
Image Rudolph W. Giuliani, President Trump's personal lawyer, called for investigations into the Bidens' connections with Ukraine. Credit Joshua Roberts/Reuters ''I can assure you this all started with an allegation about possible Ukrainian involvement in the investigation of Russian meddling, and not Biden,'' Mr. Giuliani said. ''The Biden piece is collateral to the bigger story, but must still be investigated, but without the prejudgments that infected the collusion story.''
The decision to reopen the investigation into Burisma was made in March by the current Ukrainian prosecutor general, who had cleared Hunter Biden's employer more than two years ago. The announcement came in the midst of Ukraine's contentious presidential election, and was seen in some quarters as an effort by the prosecutor general, Yuriy Lutsenko, to curry favor from the Trump administration for his boss and ally, the incumbent president, Petro O. Poroshenko.
Mr. Poroshenko lost his re-election bid in a landslide last month. While the incoming president, Volodymyr Zelensky, has said he will replace Mr. Lutsenko as prosecutor general, Mr. Zelensky has not said whether the prosecutors he appoints will be asked to continue the investigation.
Kostiantyn H. Kulyk, a deputy for Mr. Lutsenko who was handling the cases before being reassigned last month, told The New York Times that he was scrutinizing millions of dollars of payments from Burisma to the firm that paid Hunter Biden.
No evidence has surfaced that the former vice president intentionally tried to help his son by pressing for the prosecutor general's dismissal. Some of his former associates, moreover, said Mr. Biden never did anything to deter other Obama administration officials who were pushing for the United States to support criminal investigations by Ukrainian and British authorities '-- and potentially to start its own investigation '-- into Burisma and its owner, Mykola Zlochevsky, for possible money laundering and abuse of office.
Image Volodymyr Zelensky, the newly elected president of Ukraine, has not said whether the prosecutors he appoints will be asked to continue to pursue the Zlochevsky investigation. Credit Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images The Biden campaign cast the revival of the Ukrainian investigation as politically motivated and pointed to the involvement of Mr. Giuliani to question the motives behind the new scrutiny.
Kate Bedingfield, a Biden campaign spokeswoman, said the former vice president's 2016 push to oust the former prosecutor general, Viktor Shokin, was undertaken ''without any regard for how it would or would not impact any business interests of his son, a private citizen.''
The effort, she added, was consistent with ''the United States' foreign policy to root out corruption in Ukraine'' and was backed by the United States government, allies and multilateral institutions, including the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
The younger Mr. Biden said in the statement, ''At no time have I discussed with my father the company's business, or my board service, including my initial decision to join the board.''
Mr. Lutsenko denied any political motivation in reopening the case.
Hunter Biden, 49, is the middle of three children his father had with his first wife, Neilia Biden. She and the youngest child died in an automobile crash in 1972. Hunter and his older brother, Beau, survived the crash, and Beau Biden went on to a career in public service. Beau Biden died from brain cancer in 2015 at age 46.
Image Mr. Biden with his sons Hunter, left, and Beau in 1972. Credit Associated Press After graduating from Yale Law School, Hunter Biden took on a number of roles that intersected with his father's political career, including working with a Delaware-based credit card issuer, working at the Commerce Department under President Bill Clinton and working as a lobbyist on behalf of various universities, associations and companies.
When his father was selected as Barack Obama's running mate in 2008, Hunter Biden terminated his lobbying registrations, which at the time included a company that had lobbied the staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee, on which his father had served, about online gambling issues.
Months after his father became vice president, Mr. Biden joined with Christopher Heinz, the stepson of John Kerry, then a senator, and Devon Archer, a Kerry family friend, to create a network of investment and consulting firms with variations of the name Rosemont Seneca. Mr. Kerry would go on to become secretary of state.
Mr. Biden and Mr. Archer pursued business with international entities that had a stake in American foreign policy decisions, sometimes in countries where connections implied political influence and protection.
Among the companies they did work for was Burisma, a natural gas company owned by Mr. Zlochevsky. Mr. Zlochevsky had served nearly four years in the government of the former Ukrainian president Viktor F. Yanukovych, who stepped down in early 2014 and fled amid mass street protests.
Image Mykola Zlochevsky, the owner of Burisma Holdings. Credit Mykhailo Koifman/Shutterstock In the months after the collapse of Mr. Yanukovych's government, Mr. Zlochevsky also fled the country as Ukrainian prosecutors opened multiple investigations into him and his businesses. Britain's Serious Fraud Office froze London accounts linked to Mr. Zlochevsky containing $23 million, declaring it was connected to money laundering and Yanukovych-era corruption. (The British prosecution later collapsed because of what American officials said was a lack of cooperation from the office of the Ukrainian prosecutor general who preceded Mr. Shokin.)
When Mr. Shokin became prosecutor general in February 2015, he inherited several investigations into the company and Mr. Zlochevsky, including for suspicion of tax evasion and money laundering. Mr. Shokin also opened an investigation into the granting of lucrative gas licenses to companies owned by Mr. Zlochevsky when he was the head of the Ukrainian Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources. Mr. Zlochevsky and Burisma have always vigorously disputed the accusations against them.
Views about the role of the Bidens in the matter depend to some degree on questions about Mr. Shokin's motives. Among both Ukrainian and American officials, there is considerable debate about whether Mr. Shokin was intent on pursuing a legitimate inquiry into Burisma or whether he was merely using the threat of prosecution to solicit a bribe, as Mr. Zlochevsky's defenders assert.
Concerns about Mr. Shokin notwithstanding, the cases against Burisma had high-level support from the Obama administration. In April 2014, it sent top officials to a forum on Ukrainian asset recovery, co-sponsored by the United States government, in London, where Mr. Zlochevsky's case was highlighted.
Early that year, Mr. Archer, the Kerry family friend, and Hunter Biden were part of a wave of Americans who would come from across the Atlantic to help Burisma both with its substantive legal issues and its image. Their support allowed Burisma to create the perception that it was backed by powerful Americans at a time when Ukraine was especially dependent on aid and strategic backing from the United States and its allies, according to people who worked in Ukraine at the time.
Image Protesters demanded the resignation of Viktor Shokin, Ukraine's prosecutor general, in 2016. Credit Sergei Supinsky/Agence France-Presse '-- Getty Images First, Mr. Archer joined Burisma's board. Around the same time, the company started paying the New York law firm Boies Schiller Flexner, where Hunter Biden was working.
The firm, which Mr. Biden left at the end of 2017, declined to describe the nature of Boies Schiller's work for Burisma. But previously unreported financial data from the Ukrainian prosecutor general's office show the company paid $283,000 to Boies Schiller for legal services in 2014.
Soon after Mr. Archer joined Burisma's board, Hunter Biden followed, despite being warned by associates who had experience in Ukraine to stay away from Mr. Zlochevsky, according to a person familiar with the conversations.
A news release from the company said Hunter Biden would ''be in charge of the holdings' legal unit and will provide support for the company among international organizations.'' Mr. Biden said the news release mischaracterized his role with Burisma. ''At no time was I in charge of the company's legal affairs,'' he said.
Among the Americans brought in by Hunter Biden's American business partners to help fend off the investigations was Blue Star Strategies, a consulting firm run by Clinton administration veterans that had done substantial work in Ukraine.
Image Mr. Biden and President Petro O. Poroshenko of Ukraine in 2015 during a meeting in Kiev. Credit Pool photo by Mikhail Palinchak A team from Blue Star, and an American lawyer Blue Star hired, John D. Buretta, who had served as a senior official in the Obama Justice Department, held two previously unreported meetings in Kiev, Ukraine's capital, with Mr. Lutsenko, who took office in May 2016 after Mr. Shokin's dismissal, according to people with direct knowledge of the meetings. Mr. Lutsenko denied attending the meeting.
Mr. Lutsenko initially took a hard line against Burisma. But within 10 months after he took office, Burisma announced that Mr. Lutsenko and the courts had ''fully closed'' all ''legal proceedings and pending criminal allegations'' against Mr. Zlochevsky and his companies, and that the oligarch had been removed by a Ukrainian court from ''the wanted list.'' Mr. Zlochevsky returned to the country.
Hunter Biden's work in Ukraine appears to have been well compensated. Burisma paid $3.4 million to a company called Rosemont Seneca Bohai LLC from mid-April 2014, when Hunter Biden and Mr. Archer joined the board, to late 2015, according to the financial data provided by the Ukrainian deputy prosecutor. The payments continued after that, according to people familiar with the arrangement.
Rosemont Seneca Bohai was controlled by Mr. Archer, who left Burisma's board after he was charged in connection with a scheme to defraud pension funds and an Indian tribe of tens of millions of dollars. Bank records submitted in that case '-- which resulted in a conviction for Mr. Archer that was overturned in November '-- show that Rosemont Seneca Bohai made regular payments to Mr. Biden that totaled as much as $50,000 in some months.
Amos J. Hochstein, who worked with Vice President Biden on Ukraine issues as the State Department's coordinator for international energy affairs, said the Obama administration's support for prosecuting Mr. Zlochevsky contradicts any implication that the elder Mr. Biden was seeking to oust Mr. Shokin in order to protect his son or Mr. Zlochevsky.
''I was in almost every single meeting that Vice President Biden had with President Poroshenko, I was on every trip, and I was on most of the phone calls, and there was never a discussion about his son, or Burisma,'' Mr. Hochstein said. ''None of these issues ever came up.''
On Wednesday, Hunter Biden said in his statement that his term as a director had expired and that he was stepping down from Burisma's board in a political climate ''where my qualifications and work are being attacked by Rudy Giuliani and his minions for transparent political purposes.''
Kenneth P. Vogel reported from Washington, and Iuliia Mendel reported from Kiev, Ukraine.
A version of this article appears in print on
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For Biden, a Ukraine Matter That Won't Go Away
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Joe Biden unveils climate plan funded by reversing Trump tax cuts
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 15:51
Former U.S. Vice President and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden speaks during a campaign kickoff rally, May 18, 2019 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Drew Angerer | Getty Images
Former Vice President Joe Biden unveiled a plan Tuesday to put $1.7 trillion into clean energy research and infrastructure overhauls, funded by rolling back Republican corporate tax cuts.
The 2020 Democratic presidential candidate aims to use that federal investment to spur more than $5 trillion in state, local and private money for measures to address climate change, his campaign said. Biden would push for net-zero emissions by 2050, reenter the Paris climate accords and ban new oil and gas permits on public lands and waters.
"As president, I will lead America and the world, not only to confront the crisis in front of us, but to seize the opportunities it presents," Biden said in a video accompanying the plan's release.
The proposal comes as Democrats call for drastic action to address a warming planet in the face of natural disasters that have battered parts of the country. While Biden has not embraced the sweeping Green New Deal plan as some of his competitors have, he called it "a crucial framework for meeting the climate challenges we face."
Biden, the frontrunner in the Democratic presidential primary, has faced backlash from his rivals after Reuters reported that he would release a "middle ground" climate plan. Sen. Bernie Sanders, a Vermont independent who has trailed Biden in most early primary polls, said Sunday that Democrats should not settle for the "middle ground" and "have to go forward with a new and progressive agenda."
Some of Biden's competitors have already unveiled proposals to combat climate change, which has increasingly become a priority for voters.
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee '-- who has made climate change the signature issue of his presidential campaign '-- released a plan to achieve zero emissions for certain new vehicles and eliminate carbon pollution for all commercial and residential buildings by 2030. Former Rep. Beto O'Rourke has also called for $5 trillion in new investments to address climate change.
Biden's plan would reinstate Obama administration rules rolled back by the Trump administration, such as car fuel economy standards and methane emissions regulations. It would also boost mechanisms to crack down on polluting companies, which the Biden campaign said "disproportionately harm communities of color and low-income communities."
The former vice president's campaign said it will fund clean energy research "by reversing the excesses of the Trump tax cuts for corporations, reducing incentives for tax havens, evasion and outsourcing, ensuring corporations pay their fair share, closing other loopholes in our tax code that reward work not wealth, and ending subsidies for fossil fuels."
Democratic presidential candidates have said they would reverse parts of the 2017 GOP tax cuts to fund projects from infrastructure overhauls to child care and savings accounts for newborn children.
Groups such as the Sunrise Movement, a leading proponent of the Green New Deal, had pushed Biden for more drastic action on climate change. In a statement, Sunrise Movement Executive Director Varshini Prakash said the "pressure worked" as Biden "put out a comprehensive climate plan that cites the Green New Deal."
"Still, we need even more ambition from candidates if we're serious about saving millions of people from death before entire nations sink into the sea," Prakash added.
Democrats more broadly have aimed to cast themselves as better equipped to address the threat of climate change than President Donald Trump, who they say has not taken the issue seriously enough. Michael Brune, executive director of the environmental group Sierra Club, said Tuesday that "while Donald Trump abandons global leadership and buries his head in the sand, Democrats continue to lead the charge in presenting comprehensive plans to tackle the climate crisis."
A Trump campaign spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request to comment on Democratic criticism of Trump's climate policy.
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Press Freedom
Australian Federal Police raid News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst's home over alleged national security leak - Politics - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 11:36
Updated June 04, 2019 16:04:42
Police have raided the Canberra home of a News Corp journalist after she reported that the Federal Government was considering spying on Australians.
Key points:Police raided Annika Smethurst's home a year after her initial reportHer story alleged Federal Government departments were discussing giving greater surveillance powers to spy agenciesPolice allege the story undermined Australia's national securityAccording to The Daily Telegraph, the raid related to a story published in April last year in which Annika Smethurst reported that the Home Affairs and Defence departments were considering giving spy agencies greater surveillance powers.
"This raid demonstrates a dangerous act of intimidation towards those committed to telling uncomfortable truths," a News Corp spokesperson said.
"The raid was outrageous and heavy-handed."
The Australian Federal Police (AFP) confirmed the raid took place earlier today amid an investigation into leaked information.
"The matter relates to an investigation into the alleged unauthorised disclosure of national security information that was referred to the AFP," the AFP said in a statement.
"This warrant relates to the alleged publishing of information classified as an official secret, which is an extremely serious matter that has the potential to undermine Australia's national security.
"No arrests are expected today as a result of this activity."
The Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) collects and assesses foreign intelligence information before passing it on to Australia's domestic and foreign spy agencies.
The ASD does not collect information on Australian citizens, but some senior public servants want to change that.
The story alleged new powers, if adopted, would go to the ASD to secretly access bank records, emails and text messages without leaving a trace.
Smethurst's article included images of letters between the two departments as they discussed the proposals.
Raid happens a year after referralThe Defence Department referred the leak to the AFP on April 29, 2018, the same day News Corp published the story.
Then foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop said at the time that she would not support the proposal if it had been brought to cabinet.
The ABC has contacted Smethurst for comment.
"What's gone on this morning sends clear and dangerous signals to journalists and newsrooms across Australia," the News Corp spokesperson said.
"This will chill public-interest reporting."
Federal Parliamentary Press Gallery president David Crowe, from the Sydney Morning Herald and Age, was among the high-profile journalists to raise their concerns about the raid on Smethurst's home.
"This is a huge concern when [Annika Smethurst's] story was clearly in the public interest," he said on Twitter.
"Original story included images of letters outlining a plan to allow government hackers to 'proactively disrupt and covertly remove' cyber threats."
The Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance, the union that represents journalists, described the raid as an "outrageous attack on press freedom".
"It is an outrage that more than a year after the story was reported in April, 2018, but just days after the federal election result, the Federal Police are now raiding a journalist's home in order to seize documents, computers and a mobile phone in order to track down the source," MEAA media president Marcus Strom said.
Topics:government-and-politics,security-intelligence,national-security,defence-and-national-security,police,australia
First posted June 04, 2019 12:53:25
''Inconsistent, Incoherent, and Poorly Conceived'': As the Times Clamps Down on Reporters Going on MSNBC, Is This a Liberal-Media War? | Vanity Fair
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 14:47
On Sunday, May 19, New York Times finance editor David Enrich got a request from a producer at MSNBC to appear on Rachel Maddow's show the following night. Enrich had a red-hot front-page story for Monday's paper, about anti-money-laundering specialists at Deutsche Bank flagging suspicious transactions involving Donald Trump and Jared Kushner, and Maddow wanted to bring him on air to talk about it.
Maddow is MSNBC's ratings queen, jostling with Sean Hannity every night for the crown of most-watched time slot in cable news. That's why reporters tend to relish the exposure they get from doing her show. Enrich said yes, but after mentioning the planned appearance to the Times's communications department, he was told he would have to retroactively decline. The reason? The Times was wary of how viewers might perceive a down-the-middle journalist like Enrich talking politics with a mega-ideological host like Maddow. The producer, who was informed that the Times asks members of the newsroom not to appear on opinionated shows to discuss political subjects, was miffed about the cancellation, sources said. Enrich declined to comment. An MSNBC spokesman said, ''For over a decade, The Rachel Maddow Show has welcomed the best journalists from across the country and celebrated the hard work they do, day-in and day-out. This includes countless New York Times reporters and editors. That commitment to journalism is part of the DNA of the show.''
It's not just Maddow. The Times has come to ''prefer,'' as sources put it, that its reporters steer clear of any cable-news shows that the masthead perceives as too partisan, and managers have lately been advising people not to go on what they see as highly opinionated programs. It's not clear how many shows fall under that umbrella in the eyes of Times brass, but two others that definitely do are Lawrence O'Donnell's and Don Lemon's, according to people familiar with management's thinking. Hannity's or Tucker Carlson's shows would likewise make the cut, but it's not like Times reporters ever do those anyway. I'm told that over the past couple of months, executive editor Dean Baquet has felt that opinionated cable-news show are getting, well, even more opinionated. Baquet and other managers have become increasingly concerned that if a Times reporter were to go on one of these shows, his or her appearance could be perceived as being aligned with that show's political leanings. ''He thinks it's a real issue,'' one of my Times sources said. ''Their view,'' said another, ''is that, intentionally or not, it affiliates the Times reporter with a bias.''
It's not so much a new policy as a reinforcement of an old one. Reached for comment, a Times spokeswoman pointed me to the section of the Times's ''Ethical Journalism'' handbook that covers broadcast media appearances: ''In deciding whether to make a radio, television or Internet appearance, a staff member should consider its probable tone and content to make sure they are consistent with Times standards. Staff members should avoid strident, theatrical forums that emphasize punditry and reckless opinion-mongering.'' Without question, this is not how MSNBC's anchors see their shows (or CNN's for that matter). And these guidelines were crafted back in the mid-aughts, a media moment that seems downright quaint compared to today. (What forum is more ''strident and theatrical'' than Twitter, where many a Times reporter spends hours of their day? Of course Twitter has been its own minefield for the Times.)
Hand-wringing has always been an essential part of the Times's work product, but the current moment has produced a specific variety. In the supercharged post-2016 news cycle, cable news has been experiencing a gold rush, and the programming has arguably become more heated and polarizing than ever before. At the same time, there's never been more demand on cable news for political reporters, many of whom now enjoy lucrative side hustles as paid contributors at the networks. For the Times, which is navigating its own quandaries of journalistic objectivity in the Trump era, the relationship is becoming trickier than it had previously been.
The guidelines could theoretically create a world of cable news haves and have-nots. A number of high-profile Times journalists have landed political-analyst gigs either at CNN or MSNBC (Maggie Haberman, Julie Davis, Patrick Healy, Mike Schmidt, Nicholas Confessore, Jeremy Peters, and others). It's unclear whether they, too, would be encouraged to stay away from Lemon or Maddow or O'Donnell going forward, but the way cable-news contracts work is that contributors are obligated to appear on a network generally, not on this show or that. At the same time, several sources pointed out that political reporters generally gravitate toward shows like Morning Joe and Anderson Cooper 360 anyway. In CNN's case, according to a network source, the only Times contributors who typically go on CNN Tonight with Don Lemon are the opinion columnists Charles Blow and Frank Bruni, who aren't bound by the same strictures as Times newsroom staff. Of course all of this raises another point'--in the current media environment, there's hardly universal agreement on what constitutes partisan or opinionated programming. Where do you draw the lines?
For a comparison, I asked the Washington Post about its guidelines for cable-news appearances. ''We view all broadcast programs as opportunities to expose our journalism to different audiences,'' a spokeswoman told me. ''We ask our reporters to speak objectively about the news topics they cover or share fact-based analysis with the goal of giving viewers a better understanding of a story. We also ensure clear identification for opinion journalists to share their wide-ranging perspectives.''
The Times's reining in of cable-news hits is sure to rankle bookers and producers. In fact it already has. Sources told me MSNBC was none too pleased when the Times nixed Enrich's recent booking. ''They definitely weren't happy about it,'' said someone familiar with the situation.
A highly placed source at one of the cable networks said he found the Times's guidelines to be ''inconsistent, incoherent, and poorly conceived.'' He also pointed out, ''At the moment that Donald Trump became president, and print media was coincidentally in crisis mode from a business perspective, a significant contributor to the success of publications like the New York Times and the Washington Post was the exposure that their great work got on networks like MSNBC and CNN. They are the beneficiaries of some very positive exposure for their journalists.''
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Australian media decry raids on national broadcaster ABC and News Corp - Reuters
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 21:57
SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian police raided the offices of the national broadcaster on Wednesday over allegations it had published classified material, the second raid on a media outlet in two days, prompting complaints of assaults on press freedom.
The Australian Federal Police said its officers carried out a search warrant at the head office of the government-funded Australian Broadcasting Corp. (ABC) in Sydney.
Police raided the home of a News Corp editor a day earlier, although they said the raids were unrelated.
The ABC said the raid was over its 2017 reports about alleged misconduct by Australian troops in Afghanistan, while News Corp said the raid at an editor's home on Tuesday related to a 2018 report about plans for surveillance of Australians' emails, text messages and bank records.
''It is highly unusual for the national broadcaster to be raided in this way,'' ABC Managing Director David Anderson said in a statement.
''This is a serious development and raises legitimate concerns over freedom of the press and proper public scrutiny of national security and defense matters,'' he said.
News Corp, controlled by media baron Rupert Murdoch, called the raid ''outrageous and heavy handed'', and ''a dangerous act of intimidation''.
Police questioning of journalists is not new, but raids on two influential news organizations sparked warnings that national security was being used to justify curbs on whistleblowing and reporting that might embarrass the government.
''There are insufficient safeguards to prevent law enforcement agencies from using these powers to expose journalists' confidential sources,'' said Emily Howie, a Legal Director at the Human Rights Law Centre.
''This is shocking for those who are targeted but this surveillance also has a chilling effect on people coming forward,'' she added.
The ABC investigations editor, John Lyons, tweeted a photo of the search warrant which showed the targets included two ABC journalists, the organization's news director and a former Australian military lawyer, David William McBride, who was charged last year with leaking national secrets. Media reports said he had pleaded not guilty.
''It's a complex case but it's also a simple case. It comes down to: At what point are you obliged to basically rebel against the government?'' online publication The New Daily quoted McBride as saying on Wednesday.
Reuters was not immediately able to reach McBride to verify his comments.
'DANGEROUS DAY' The raids came barely two weeks after Australia's conservative government won a May 18 election it was widely expected to lose, and which almost cost Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton his seat.
The home affairs minister must authorize raids considered politically sensitive, according to guidelines on the police website.
Dutton denied involvement in the police investigations and said his office was notified after the raids were carried out.
''It is entirely appropriate they conduct their investigations independently and, in fact, it is their statutory obligation,'' Dutton said in a statement.
Police confirmed they had not notified Dutton in advance and said their actions were ''independent and impartial at all times''.
Both raids ''relate to separate allegations of publishing classified material ... which is an extremely serious matter that has the potential to undermine Australia's national security'', they added.
ABC staff posted footage and comments as the raid unfolded.
''This is a bad, sad and dangerous day for a country where we have for so long valued ... a free press,'' Lyons said on Twitter.
Peter Greste, director of the Alliance for Journalists' Freedom, said the raids were a serious issue for Australians who he said cared deeply about press freedom.
Editorial Director of the Australian Broadcasting Corp (ABC) Craig McMurtie speaks to members of the media outside the ABC building located at Ultimo in Sydney, Australia, June 5, 2019. AAP/David Gray/via REUTERS Greste is a former Al Jazeera reporter who was jailed with two colleagues in Egypt from 2013-2015 on national security charges brought by the Egyptian government.
''I'm not suggesting that Australia is about to become Egypt any time soon but what we are seeing seems to me to be on the same spectrum,'' he said.
Media reports said McBride was due in the Australian Capital Territory Supreme Court on June 13.
Reporting by Byron Kaye, Tom Westbrook and Colin Packham; Editing by Paul Tait and Nick Macfie
The ex-Defence whistleblower at the centre of ABC raids
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 21:57
He is a one-time Liberal candidate in NSW and the son of the late Sydney doctor who alerted the world to birth defects caused by the drug thalidomide.
Now David William McBride, a former military lawyer and captain in Britain's elite Special Air Service, is himself a whistleblower and is at the centre of Australian Federal Police raids on the ABC's Sydney headquarters on Wednesday.
Whistleblower David William McBride has been charged for leaking defence documents to journalists. Credit: Alexandra Back
Mr McBride, 55, was arrested in dramatic scenes at Sydney Airport in September last year as he sought to return to his new home of Spain after a brief trip to Australia to attend a father-daughter dance at his daughter's school.
He was named on Wednesday alongside three ABC journalists in the AFP's search warrant, which covers a raft of documents believed to be in the possession of the national broadcaster, including handwritten and digital notes relating to the four men as well as to a range of organisations and broad topics, including "Afghanistan" and "The 7.30 Report".
A former legal adviser to Australia's special forces in Afghanistan, Mr McBride does not dispute that he leaked material to the ABC that formed the basis of a 2017 report called "The Afghan files", which revealed allegations of serious misconduct by Australian troops in Afghanistan including potential unlawful killings of unarmed men and children.
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Mr McBride was charged in September last year with theft of Commonwealth property, namely war crimes investigation files, and three counts of breaching the Defence Act. He was also charged under old secrecy provisions in the Commonwealth Crimes Act.
Mr McBride, who said in March he is "not afraid of going to jail", has been committed to stand trial on the charges in the ACT Supreme Court. He is currently on bail and if found guilty, he faces a potential lengthy prison term or fine.
''They've threatened me all along with going to jail. If I was afraid of going to jail, why would I have been a soldier?'' he told reporters earlier this year.
''Unfortunately there are too many people in Canberra who are afraid. Plenty of people knew what I knew, but no one else stood up.''
He said outside court in March he would defend the case on legal grounds, namely that he had a duty to report the information at the heart of the leaks.
''I'm seeking to have the case look purely at whether the government broke the law and whether it was my duty as a lawyer to report that fact,'' he said. ''I'm taking away, off the table, any dispute about whether the documents were given.''
In 2002 Mr McBride won a tough preselection battle to run as the Liberal Party's candidate in the NSW seat of Coogee, then a Labor stronghold held by veteran MP Ernie Page. It followed a brief flirtation with the ALP in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
Joining Mr McBride on the campaign trail was his father William McBride, the Sydney doctor who was celebrated for alerting the world to the dangers of thalidomide.
Dr McBride, who died last year, was struck off the medical register in the early 1990s after concerns were raised about his research into another drug he suspected caused birth defects. He won the right to practice again in 1998.
Mr McBride lost the 2003 state election to the ALP's Mr Page and Coogee would not be reclaimed by the Liberals until 2011. The seat returned to ALP hands at the March 23 election this year.
In a varied career, the Oxford and University of Sydney alumnus also worked at a London-based security company and, years before his pursuit by the AFP, appeared in the British adventure game-show Wanted in the 1990s. His Supreme Court case is listed for a preliminary hearing on June 13.
Mr McBride told The Canberra Times there was no connection between him and the AFP's raid on Tuesday of the home of News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst.
Michaela Whitbourn is a legal affairs reporter at The Sydney Morning Herald.
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Shut Up Slave!
Burgemeester verbiedt demo Pegida in Eindhoven | Binnenland | Telegraaf.nl
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 19:29
Eind mei liep een Pgida-demonstratie door een grote tegenbeweging al uit de hand in Eindhoven.
''¸ ANP
'žOok het feit dat Pegida de demonstratie laat plaatsvinden gedurende het Suikerfeest, leidt tot veel onbegrip en weerstand binnen de moslim-geloofsgemeenschap'', aldus de burgemeester. 'žDe politie heeft sterke aanwijzingen dat naast de tegendemonstraties een tegenbeweging op gang wordt gebracht waarbij geweld en agressie niet worden geschuwd.''
Pegida had eigenlijk afgelopen zondag willen demonstreren, maar kreeg geen vergunning omdat volgens Jorritsma de aanvraag te laat binnenkwam. De zondag daarvoor, op 26 mei, leidde een demonstratie van zo'n twintig aanhangers van Pegida 'žtegen de islamisering'' tot rellen vlakbij de Al-Fourqaan moskee in Eindhoven. Daarbij richtte een groep van zo'n driehonderd Turkse mensen zich tegen de twintig demonstranten van Pegida en tegen de politie.
De boze menigte gooide met stenen, de mobiele eenheid voerde charges uit. De rellen op 26 mei leidden tot vernielingen aan onder meer auto's in de buurt van de moskee. De politie pakte toen tien tegendemonstranten op, zeven van hen op verdenking van openlijke geweldpleging. Vier politiemensen raakten licht gewond bij de ongeregeldheden. Pegida moest uiteindelijk de demonstratie op last van de politie afbreken, maar liet weten het daar niet bij te laten zitten.
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Assange
Pieczenik's Reply
He is being designated as a spy.... puts out of the realm of regular courts... but my suspicion is that they can release him under 'special circumstances' which will never revealed publicly
EuroLand
EU boss Jean Claude Juncker moans that he doesn't have an Air Force One-style private jet | Daily Mail Online
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 15:03
EU President Jean Claude Juncker has complained again that unlike the US President he doesn't have his own plane, and said it is 'ridiculous' there are so few women at the top levels of European politics.
In a wide-ranging interview the outgoing head of the European Commission also compared German Chancellor Angela Merkel to a 'lovable work of art', implied Commissioners don't all deserve their lifelong pensions, and said he hoped that 20 years from now people would have greater 'respect and affection' for the EU.
And he said he had been living in a 50 square metre (540 sq ft) hotel room which left him taking meetings at other leaders' residence because, he said, 'I can't talk to official visitors sitting on my bed.'
Mr Juncker told Bild magazine: 'The Commission President doesn't have a residence. I have been living in a hotel apartment measuring 50 square metres for 3250 euro [per month]. Donald Tusk doesn't have a residence either, by the way.'
He was quick to add: 'The NATO Secretary-General, on the other hand, lives in a stately home, and invites us there sometimes when we need a rest. All the ambassadors have residences too - I know many of them.'
The President of the European Commission said he 'can't talk to official visitors sitting on my bed' after describing his 50-square-metre hotel room
Explaining he had spent time 'visiting', he went on: 'The biggest problem was that I couldn't invite anyone home. I can't talk to official visitors sitting on my bed' On the other hand, when I flew to visit them by commercial airliner, I was always invited to their private residences.
'When I was talking to Donald Trump, I was constantly looking at my watch so that I wouldn't miss my flight home. Trump kept saying, "Your 'plane can wait!", he didn't realise that I didn't have my own aeroplane.'
This is not the first time he has complained about not having his own private jet.
In 2014, while campaigning for the position of President of the European Commission, he tweeted: 'The Americans have Air Force One. I don't. But I am still campaigning all over Europe! #withJuncker'
He used private jets for almost half of his official visits in 2018, with one overnight trip to Tunisia racking up a bill of £32,000. This despite EU laws which ban 'air taxis' unless there are no other flights available. Mr Juncker chartered private jets for 21 out of 43 official trips between January and November.
He sparked fury when, in 2017, it emerged he chartered a £24,000 private jet to Rome with a delegation of nine.
In 2014, while campaigning for the position of President of the European Commission, he tweeted: 'The Americans have Air Force One. I don't. But I am still campaigning all over Europe! #withJuncker'
Mr Juncker also touched on Commissioners' gender and pensions in the Bild interview. Only nine of the 28 Commissioners are women.
He said: 'When I put my Commission together five years ago, the Member States only proposed one woman. I made sure that at least nine women had posts out of the twenty-eight.
'I agree, this situation is ridiculous, there are still too few women. That applies to all the other top jobs in the EU.
'Sixty percent of all graduates are women, so the minimum is that half the Commissioners should be female. ''
And he implied golden goodbyes should cease or be tempered, explaining that five Commissioners have been elected MEPs, so member states have the right to propose replacement Commissioners for the remaining five months of the Commission's term.
He said: 'This would cost the European taxpayer a million euro per Commissioner, for relocation, staff and the lifelong pension which every Commissioner gets, no matter how long he or she has been in office, because the Member States have decided that this is so. I'm trying to stop this.'
One of the Commission President's most important relationships is with the leader of the EU's biggest economy, Germany, and with Chancellor Angela Merkel having said she will not seek re-election at the end of her terms in 2021, Mr Junkcer reflected he was 'sad' she would be 'taken' from him.
Asked what he would miss most he said: 'She is a lovable work of art, and I feel sad when a work of art is taken from me. But that won't happen any time soon.'
He was quick to doge any blame for Brexit, saying: 'It's too easy to blame the Commission President for everything. The UK government is responsible for Brexit.'
But asked whether he should take some responsibility for the rise of populism across Europe during his tenure as Commission President, he said: 'Governments have a habit of congratulating themselves for what goes right and blaming Brussels for what goes wrong. It's no wonder that anti-European tendencies are on the rise.'
Mr Juncker and Theresa May. He said the UK government was responsible for Brexit, not the EU, then insisted national governments were too quick to shift blame to the EU
Mr Juncker said his most difficult time had been the Greek bailout and the hardest world leader to speak with was President Trump, adding that he would advise his successor to establish an EU-wide department for countering 'fake news'.
He said he hoped that 20 years from now there was more integration bnetween peoples of Europe and warmer feelings about the EU itself.
Asked about the future he told Bild: 'I would like people to treat the EU with greater respect and affection instead of constantly doing it down.
'I would also like the Member States to try to learn more about each other. I am sad that the Luxembourgers know nothing about the Sami and the Bavarians nothing about the Sicilians.
'After all, we have a common European destiny.'
Ottomania
US offer not 'as good as S-400': Turkey says no turning back on missile deal with Russia '-- RT World News
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 12:27
Turkish president Recep Erdogan has said a US consolation offer of Patriot air defense systems was no match for the offer made by Russia on its S-400. Turkey won't step out of the deal with Moscow, despite US pressure, he added.
The White House has been threatening NATO-ally Turkey with sanctions for quite a while already, urging it to ditch the $2.5-billion S-400 accord with Moscow. The US cites security concerns and incompatibility of the Russian equipment with American systems.
''There is an agreement here and we are committed to it,'' Erdogan countered, when speaking to journalists. ''It is out of the question for us to take a step back.''
Also on rt.com Purchase of S-400 systems will be 'devastating' for Turkey's F-35 program '' Pentagon The president added Ankara had proposed to work with Washington on the issue and had asked the White House to offer Ankara a better deal on its military gear. However, Washington failed to do that.
Unfortunately the US side has not given us an offer as good as the S400s
As Ankara expects to receive the first S-400 batteries this month, the US is persisting in urging Ankara to drop the purchase.
Also on rt.com US threatens 'serious implications' for defence ties with India as it stands defiant over S-400 deal Turkey is not the only state that faces retaliation from Washington for military shopping in Russia. India also had to fight off American threats of sanctions for purchasing an advanced surface-to-air missile system from Moscow last year.
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Pig Ebola
Poland confirms African swine fever break in 8,000-head herd | National Hog Farmer
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 21:20
A farm with more than 8,000 pigs in Poland has broke with African swine fever. According to the World Organization for Animal Health, the farm is located in Bielsk Podlaskie near the border with Belarus.
The information was provided to the OIE by Pawel Niemczuk, chief veterinary officer, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, POL Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Varsovie, Poland
While ASF has been spreading across the country through wild boars, this break is only the third this year in domestic pig populations and by far the largest. Since October 2018, there have been more than 1,400 cases of ASF reported in wild boar populations.
On Oct. 26, 2018, the USDA Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service agreed to lift restrictions on imports of some fresh and frozen pork from Poland that were put in place earlier that month, due to potential risk from ASF. After an expeditious review of export protocols, APHIS notified Poland that it will lift restrictions on all establishments located in the contiguous free zones. During that announcement APHIS also declared, ''We are retaining restrictions on raw product and heat-treated -- but not fully cooked -- product from two establishments while we complete a more thorough review.''
While there is no human health risk, as humans are not susceptible to ASF, USDA continues to work to ensure consistency with the stringent, long-standing safeguards in place that protect U.S. animal health from ASF. USDA uses a strong series of interlocking protections against the entry of animal diseases like ASF, including restricting the entry of pork and pork products from ASF-affected countries or regions.
Sources: OIE and USDA, which are solely responsible for the information provided, and wholly owns the information. Informa Business Media and all its subsidiaries are not responsible for any of the content contained in this information asset.
'No way to stop it': millions of pigs culled across Asia as swine fever spreads | World news | The Guardian
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 10:42
South-east Asia is battling to contain the spread of highly contagious African swine fever, known as ''pig Ebola'', which has already led to the culling of millions of pigs in China and Vietnam.
African swine fever, which is harmless to humans but fatal to pigs, was discovered in China in August, where it has caused havoc, leading to more than 1.2m pigs being culled. China is home to almost half of the world's pigs and the news sent the global price of pork soaring.
There is no vaccination for African swine fever, which causes pigs to internally haemorrhage until they die, so the only option to contain the disease is to kill any contaminated animals. Some estimates say that in China up to 200m animals may eventually be slaughtered. The virus can last for several weeks on anything from clothes to vehicles, allowing for it to easily travel long distances.
It has spread like wildfire across Asia, causing growing devastation to the pig farmers of Vietnam and Cambodia and putting Thailand, Asia's second-biggest pork producer, on ''red alert''. Cases have increased in Mongolia, North Korea and Hong Kong in recent weeks, while South Korea is blood testing pigs at the border.
The UN Food and Agriculture organisation (UNFAO) and regional experts fear that Myanmar, Philippines and Laos will be next because they are all highly susceptible to an outbreak, due to the struggle to control the movement of pigs and pig products across porous borders.
This is the biggest animal disease outbreak we've ever had on the planet
''This is the biggest animal disease outbreak we've ever had on the planet,'' said Dirk Pfeiffer, a veterinary epidemiologist at City University of Hong Kong and expert on African swine fever. ''It makes the foot and mouth disease and BSE outbreaks pale in comparison to the damage that is being done. And we have no way to stop it from spreading.''
Currently the battle to contain the disease is being lost. ''There are concerns that the disease will continue to spread across the countries in south-east Asia,'' said Dr Wantanee Kalpravidh, regional manager for UNFAO, who said they believed the swine fever cases being reported by governments in the region were ''underestimates''.
Wantanee said problems included the lack of compensation for pig farmers in south-east Asia whose herds were culled, giving them little reason to report a disease outbreak, and fears that banning movement of pigs and pork across borders would only create a ''black market which would be impossible to control''.
The implications of the outbreak are already being felt beyond Asia. Global pork prices have risen by almost 40%, and long term it is likely to lead to more pork imports from Europe and America to meet demand, which will also push up global meat prices. Market analyst Rabobank said global pork supplies could fall by 8%.
In Vietnam, the first swine fever case was detected in January this year in northern Vietnam, not far from the border with China. Last week, agriculture minister Nguyen Xuan Cuong confirmed the virus had now spread to 48 of the country's 63 provinces. The country has now culled about 2m pigs, or 6% of the country's herd, a figure that is expected to rise steeply.
''The world and Vietnam have never faced such an extremely dangerous, difficult, complicated and expensive epidemic as this,'' Cuong said in a statement last month.
The economic and social impact is likely to be huge for Vietnam. Pork accounts for 75% of all meat consumed in the country and it is an industry worth 94tn dong (£32m). Overall, the agriculture sector in Vietnam employs almost 50% of the workforce, with pork farming a significant part of that.
Speaking in parliament, Cuong urged consumers and businesses to stockpile pork ahead of likely shortages towards the end of the year. The government has also mobilised police and military to help contain the outbreak but has stopped short of declaring it a national emergency.
In Cambodia, around 2400 pigs have died or been culled due to the disease in the past two months, while in Hong Kong two separate cases led to there being no fresh pork in the country for a week.
But Pfeiffer was not optimistic Thailand '' which has more than 2m pigs '' could resist the pandemic spreading from neighbouring Vietnam and Cambodia, or China, for much longer, saying it could probably enter ''through pork products brought in illegally from Vietnam and China, even if just by tourists or truck drivers''.
''The virus survives so well and there are so many people travelling particularly between China and Thailand, it's hard to see how it could be contained for much longer,'' he added.
War on Guns
Causes-of-death-in-USA-vs.-media-coverage.png (4080—3133)
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 11:37
Out There
Moon landing coins launched in Australia | The Canberra Times
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 15:05
It's been almost 50 years since Apollo 11 landed on the moon and domed-shaped coins are being released in Australia to mark the giant leap for mankind. The Royal Australian Mint announced the three-coin collectable series on Wednesday to celebrate five decades since the historic lunar landing in July 1969. The world's first dome-shaped coloured nickel plated coin, a domed gold coin and a coloured silver domed coin are part of the collection made with the United States Mint. Royal Australian Mint chief executive Ross MacDiarmid said the coins celebrated a triumph of science and human endeavour across the world. "We are honoured to share these unique coloured domed coins, including the magnificent collaborative set with the United States Mint, to mark 50 years since Australia shared the first human perspective of the Moon's surface with the world," he said. One side of the coin depicts the CSIRO Parkes radio telescope pointed towards the moon as it received signals of the Apollo 11 lunar landing. Words from Commander Neil Armstrong's journal of the historic event have also been included on the same side with the image of Queen Elizabeth II on the design. The reverse side shows one of the Apollo 11 astronauts standing on the surface of the Moon, with the lunar module Eagle in the background. The Earth stands out in colour and Australia can be seen facing the moon with the journey of the Apollo 11 crew traced in the sky. Former Parkes radio telescope site electrician and driver Ben Lam said the coins recognised their contribution to sharing the landing to 600 million people globally. The 50th Anniversary of the Lunar Landing - 2019 $100 gold proof domed coin is worth $2795, the $5.50 coin costs $195 and the $5 domed coin sells for $150. For those with less coin to spend, there is a six-coin uncirculated set for $25. Australian Associated Press
https://nnimgt-a.akamaihd.net/transform/v1/crop/frm/silverstone-feed-data/02b75ab5-2fee-44be-8ab9-3d813572c237.jpg/r0_74_800_526_w1200_h678_fmax.jpg
It's been almost 50 years since Apollo 11 landed on the moon and domed-shaped coins are being released in Australia to mark the giant leap for mankind.
The Royal Australian Mint announced the three-coin collectable series on Wednesday to celebrate five decades since the historic lunar landing in July 1969.
The world's first dome-shaped coloured nickel plated coin, a domed gold coin and a coloured silver domed coin are part of the collection made with the United States Mint.
Royal Australian Mint chief executive Ross MacDiarmid said the coins celebrated a triumph of science and human endeavour across the world.
"We are honoured to share these unique coloured domed coins, including the magnificent collaborative set with the United States Mint, to mark 50 years since Australia shared the first human perspective of the Moon's surface with the world," he said.
One side of the coin depicts the CSIRO Parkes radio telescope pointed towards the moon as it received signals of the Apollo 11 lunar landing.
Words from Commander Neil Armstrong's journal of the historic event have also been included on the same side with the image of Queen Elizabeth II on the design.
The reverse side shows one of the Apollo 11 astronauts standing on the surface of the Moon, with the lunar module Eagle in the background.
The Earth stands out in colour and Australia can be seen facing the moon with the journey of the Apollo 11 crew traced in the sky.
Former Parkes radio telescope site electrician and driver Ben Lam said the coins recognised their contribution to sharing the landing to 600 million people globally.
The 50th Anniversary of the Lunar Landing - 2019 $100 gold proof domed coin is worth $2795, the $5.50 coin costs $195 and the $5 domed coin sells for $150.
For those with less coin to spend, there is a six-coin uncirculated set for $25.
Australian Associated Press
Clips
VIDEO - Huskies are coming: Rise in huskies at local shelters blamed on impulsive 'Game of Thrones' fans
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 12:29
Monterey and Santa Cruz County animal shelters said they're seeing an increase in huskies recently and they believe it's because of the popular TV show "Game of Thrones.""A lot of huskies and husky mixes have been coming in," Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter General Manager Melanie Sobel said.She said they have six husky or husky mixed dogs and that's the most they've ever seen at one time.There has been an increase in huskies seen in shelters around the state and country. Many are speculating it's because huskies look like dire wolves from the popular show "Game of Thrones." The show has noticed the uptick and is speaking out against the impulsive purchases of the dogs.In April, Jerome Flynn, who plays Bronn in the series, did a video with PETA where he said in part, "Animal Shelters around are reporting a surge in the number of abandoned huskies because the casual acquirer, who bought the dogs on a whim, fail to take into consideration the time, patience, and money required to care for the animal."Sobel said the type of huskies they are seeing are 1 to 2 years old. She said people most likely buy them as puppies and can't keep up with their lifestyle demands as they get older."They need a lot of exercise, they need a lot of stimulation," Sobel said. "They like to roam so being sequestered to a backyard is not a good life for them."Sobel said it's vital to put the time in to make sure you know what kind of dog you're getting before you add them to your family."We always tell people no matter what kind of dog you get you should make sure you research the breed," Sobel said. "Make sure it's a good match for your lifestyle and what you want from a dog."During the month of June, The Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter is offering free spay, neuter, and microchips for your husky or husky mixed dogs.
SANTA CRUZ, Calif. '--Monterey and Santa Cruz County animal shelters said they're seeing an increase in huskies recently and they believe it's because of the popular TV show "Game of Thrones."
"A lot of huskies and husky mixes have been coming in," Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter General Manager Melanie Sobel said.
She said they have six husky or husky mixed dogs and that's the most they've ever seen at one time.
There has been an increase in huskies seen in shelters around the state and country. Many are speculating it's because huskies look like dire wolves from the popular show "Game of Thrones." The show has noticed the uptick and is speaking out against the impulsive purchases of the dogs.
In April, Jerome Flynn, who plays Bronn in the series, did a video with PETA where he said in part, "Animal Shelters around are reporting a surge in the number of abandoned huskies because the casual acquirer, who bought the dogs on a whim, fail to take into consideration the time, patience, and money required to care for the animal."
Sobel said the type of huskies they are seeing are 1 to 2 years old. She said people most likely buy them as puppies and can't keep up with their lifestyle demands as they get older.
"They need a lot of exercise, they need a lot of stimulation," Sobel said. "They like to roam so being sequestered to a backyard is not a good life for them."
Sobel said it's vital to put the time in to make sure you know what kind of dog you're getting before you add them to your family.
"We always tell people no matter what kind of dog you get you should make sure you research the breed," Sobel said. "Make sure it's a good match for your lifestyle and what you want from a dog."
During the month of June, The Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter is offering free spay, neuter, and microchips for your husky or husky mixed dogs.
VIDEO - STATE DINNER: President Trump - Queen Elizabeth II Remarks - YouTube
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 12:17
VIDEO - Assange lesson not learned: gov't intimidation continues - YouTube
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 11:48
VIDEO - Federal Police raid Annika Smethurst's home: Ben Fordham also targeted
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 11:35
Just hours after the Australian Federal Police raided the home of high-profile journalist Annika Smethurst, broadcaster Ben Fordham has revealed he's also being targeted for his reporting.
The 2GB Drive presenter and Sky News contributor revealed he was the subject of a probe over his story yesterday about six asylum seeker boats attempting to reach Australia.
An hour after his report went to air yesterday, his producer was contacted by an official from the Department of Home Affairs to advise the material was ''highly confidential''.
''In other words, we weren't supposed to know it,'' Fordham told listeners today.
''We were told Home Affairs would investigate the disclosure and they would like me to assist that investigation.''
He was contacted again last night by ''senior officials'' and again this morning, when he was told Home Affairs had initiated an investigation that could lead to an AFP criminal investigation.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison, in London today, said the issue was an ''ongoing matter for the AFP, they're the best to make comment on that, not me.''
Speaking after a speech to an Australia-UK Chamber of Commerce lunch at London's Savoy Hotel, he added: ''I don't make comments on security matters.
''The AFP conduct the investigations that they do on their own initiative and they're the ones that should be commenting on their investigation.
''Australia believes strongly in the freedom of the press and we have clear rules and protections for freedom of the press and there are also clear rules protecting Australia's national security and everybody should operate in accordance with all of those rules.''
Asked if the news troubled him, he said: ''It never troubles me that our laws are being upheld.''
The revelation came as Fordham spoke about the raid today on the Canberra home of Smethurst, the Walkley Award-winning political editor of News Corp Australia's Sunday titles, including The Sunday Telegraph.
''The timing of this raid is interesting to me because only yesterday afternoon I found out I was potentially facing a similar raid,'' Fordham said.
While he was told that he wasn't the subject of potential charges, Home Affairs wanted him to assist in identifying his source.
''It was explained to me that only a limited number of people had access to the information we broadcast,'' he said.
''The chances of me revealing my sources is zero. Not today, not tomorrow, next week or next month. There is not a hope in hell of that happening.''
The ''heavy-handed'' raid of Smethurst's home this morning by several AFP offices has sparked widespread outrage.
The search warrant extended not just to her dwelling but also her mobile phone and computer.
The Daily Telegraph reports the raid concerns a report published in April last year that revealed the departments of Defence and Home Affairs were considering new powers allowing Australians to be monitored for the first time.
Ms Smethurst's original article included images of top secret letters between Home Affairs Secretary Mike Pezzullo and Defence Secretary Greg Moriarty.
News Corp Australia, publisher of news.com.au, has condemned this morning's raid.
''The Australian public's right to know information about government laws that could impact their lives is of fundamental importance in our society,'' it said in a statement.
''This raid demonstrates a dangerous act of intimidation towards those committed to telling uncomfortable truths. The raid was outrageous and heavy handed.
''News Corp Australia has expressed the most serious concerns about the willingness of governments to undermine the Australian public's right to know about important decisions Governments are making that can and will impact ordinary Australian citizens.
''What's gone on this morning sends clear and dangerous signals to journalists and newsrooms across Australia. This will chill public interest reporting.''
The top secret correspondence contained in Ms Smethurst's original story reportedly outlined a proposal to allow government spies to ''proactively disrupt and covertly remove'' onshore cyber threats by ''hacking into critical infrastructure''.
The proposal would also give the cyber spy agency, the Australian Signals Directorate, powers to snoop on the emails, bank accounts and text messages of Aussies, with the approval of the relevant home affairs and defence ministers.
Law currently prevents the agency from monitoring Australian citizens.
The Australian Lawyers Alliance said the law should protect journalists and their sources from ''harassment by police and security agencies''.
''Annika Smethurst's story was clearly within the public interest,'' ALA spokesman for criminal justice Greg Barns said.
''This intimidating behaviour by the police poses a serious risk to our democracy, and undermines the accountability of the government to the people that it serves.
''Scrutiny of government agencies by the media is critical to a democracy, and it is very concerning that these security agencies seem to want to avoid any examination.''
The group Digital Rights Watch has also slammed the raid, describing it as a ''gross abuse of national security powers''.
''It's incredibly worrying to see AFP officers carry out a raid on the home of a political journalist working to reveal an important public interest issue '-- a potential massive expansion of domestic capacity in Australian spy agencies,'' the organisation's chairman Tim Singleton Norton said.
''We fear the powers given to the AFP to seize and search Annika Smethurst's digital footprint represent a considerable risk to bold Australians who choose to expose wrongdoing in the public services.
''This is a gross abuse of national security powers '-- using them to reinforce a culture of secrecy and lack of accountability in our law enforcement apparatuses.''
In a statement, the AFP confirmed a search was under way at Ms Smethurst's home.
''The matter relates to an investigation into the alleged unauthorised disclosure of national security information that was referred to the AFP,'' the statement read.
''Police will allege the unauthorised disclosure of these specific documents undermines Australia's national security. No arrests are expected today as a result of this activity.''
The Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance, the union for journalists, said the raid was ''an outrageous attack on press freedom''.
''Yet again, we have an example of a government aiming to punish those who have brought to light vital information,'' the MEAA's media president Marcus Strom said.
''Australians are entitled to know what their governments do in their name. That clearly includes plans by government agencies to digitally spy on Australians by hacking into our emails, bank accounts and text messages.
''It is an outrage that more than a year after the story was reported in April 2018 but just days after the federal election result, the Federal Police are now raiding a journalist's home in order to seize documents, computers and a mobile phone in order to track down the source.''
The MEAA called on Scott Morrison and his government to ''show its support for press freedom''.
The digital rights organisation Electronic Frontiers Australia also expressed its condemnation.
''This is an obvious attempt to bully and intimidate journalists reporting on the latest attempted power grab by the already over-powerful Department of Home Affairs,'' it said in a statement.
A number of Ms Smethurst's colleagues in Canberra have also expressed their concern.
David Crowe, chief political correspondent for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age newspapers, and current president of the Federal Parliamentary Press Gallery, took to Twitter to describe the raid as ''a huge concern'', adding that her report ''was clearly in the public interest''.
Amy Remeikis, political reporter for Guardian Australia, described the AFP search as ''seriously messed up''.
Samantha Maiden, The New Daily's political editor, said she asked Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton about Ms Smethurst's original story.
''He suggested the idea they were planning to spy on Australian citizens was 'nonsense' '... today her house was raided '... AFP are going through her belongings.''
A spokesperson for Mr Dutton referred all queries to the AFP.
Shadow Home Affairs spokesperson Kristina Keneally said news about the raids came while Labor's frontbench was meeting.
''We don't have any information to add at this point,'' Senator Keneally said. ''It's incumbent on the government and the AFP now to speak more on this matter.''
Centre Alliance Senator Rex Patrick attacked the raid, saying it was a ''heavy-handed effort to browbeat the media''.
''Ms Smethurst's journalism exposed important aspects of government plans to extend surveillance powers for national security agencies,'' Senator Patrick said.
''That reporting informed parliamentary and public debate and is to be commended.''
He said the execution of the search warrant at her home '-- not at her office '-- more than a year after the report was published ''reeks of intimidation and retribution''.
''Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton and Home Affairs Secretary Mike Pezzullo clearly hate media scrutiny,'' Senator Patrick said.
Ms Smethurst has twice won the Walkley Award for Scoop of the Year, first in 2015 for her expose of Bronwyn Bishop's use of taxpayer funded helicopters and again in 2017 for her reporting about Health Minister Sussan Ley's travel expenses.
VIDEO - Michael Wolff predicts how Trump's presidency will end - YouTube
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 11:18
VIDEO - Marcia Cross's Anal Cancer Likely Linked to Husband's Cancer | PEOPLE.com
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 11:02
In 2009, Marcia Cross was helping her husband, Tom Mahoney, through the grueling treatment for his throat cancer. He went into remission, but nearly a decade later, his disease came up again when Cross was diagnosed with anal cancer. Doctors suspect that both of their cancers came from the same type of HPV, or human papillomavirus, a sexually transmitted disease.
Cross, 57, only learned of the possible connection after she was treated for her anal cancer, she told CBS This Morning on Wednesday. Now in remission, she's doing anything she can to promote early prevention against HPV, and encouraging people to get the HPV vaccine. With early immunization, kids can start receiving the HPV vaccine at age 9, and her twin daughters, Savannah and Eden, 12, will get their first shot in a few weeks.
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Promoting early prevention is just one of the ways Cross is pushing for greater awareness of anal cancer. She decided to speak openly about her experience so others will hopefully be less embarrassed about the disease and get a rectal exam, which is how she learned of her cancer.
''I was so not thinking anything was wrong because I didn't have any symptoms, and she gave me an exam and came around and said, 'Well, I just want you to know, whatever it is it's curable.' It was like '-- what?! What are you talking about?'' she recalled.
During her treatment, the former Desperate Housewives star leaned on her family and friends for support.
''What I had was a bevy of girlfriends. I called them my 'anal angels,''' she said. ''You know, I kept saying, 'If this doesn't kill me, it's like the best thing that could have ever happened.' Because the experience of being loved like that '-- it blew my mind.''
Cross said she's now ''doing great,'' a year and a half after her diagnosis.
''I'm feeling back to normal though it's a new normal,'' she said. ''I don't think I'll ever take it for granted. I'm the girl who goes to the bathroom now and I go 'Yes! It's great what my body can do! I'm so grateful.'''
Cross also wants people to stop feeling embarrassed about the disease.
''I know there are people who are ashamed. You have cancer! Do you have to then also feel ashamed? Like you did something bad, you know, because it took up residence in your anus?'' she said. ''I mean, come on, really. There's enough on your plate.''
Cross admits, though, that she had trouble saying ''anal'' at first.
''Even for me, it took a while. Anus, anus, anus!'' she said with a laugh. ''You just have to get used to it.''
VIDEO - Waikato settlement shocked by suspected shooting - YouTube
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 10:39
VIDEO - Apple strips clips of WWDC devs booing that $999 monitor stand from the web using copyright claims. Fear not, you can listen again here... ' The Register
Thu, 06 Jun 2019 03:40
YouTube happy to spare iGiant embarrassment but won't take down 'slur' vids The big groan moment
MP3 Apple's focus on privacy, if you're not in China that is, now extends to its events, at least the embarrassing moments.
The techno-glam-gear and services giant has demanded the removal of YouTube-hosted video excerpts of its live-streamed developer conference keynote. The offending clips captured crowd discontent '' some booing and mostly gasping and groaning '' on Monday over the $999 price tag of the Pro Stand for Apple's forthcoming Pro Display XDR.
One such video, titled "WWDC 2019 Pro Stand Crowd Reaction," received 895,728 views prior to its takedown on copyright infringement grounds, a move that's presumably a result of it being embedded in our coverage of the pricey monitor accessory.
The video will no longer play, and YouTube offers the following explanation:
The Register asked Apple for an explanation, but the company's communications team has not been communicative. Interestingly, there are many other videos of the event, shared on YouTube and Twitter, that weren't taken down presumably because they didn't include any embarrassing mocking of the pointlessly expensive monitor stand.
We've also emailed YouTube to see whether anyone there can provide further insight into the copyright takedown request. No word yet.
Chaos reigns YouTube has been under fire this week for its uneven handling of hate speech complaints. Even as the web vid goliath on Wednesday said it has amended its policies to "prohibiting videos alleging that a group is superior in order to justify discrimination, segregation or exclusion" '' no more white supremacy, apparently '' it faces ongoing complaints from Vox journalist Carlos Maza over the platform's refusal to take action against YouTuber Steven Crowder: Crowder is accused of lobbing homophobic and racist slurs at the journo in a string of YouTube videos.
Google-owned YouTube today temporarily cut off Crowder's ad revenue as support for Maza surged, but quickly U-turned and said it would turn the money tap back on once Crowder, er, stopped selling T-shirts from the site.
"We have suspended [Crowder's] channel's monetization," a YouTube spokesperson tweeted earlier. "We came to this decision because a pattern of egregious actions has harmed the broader community and is against our YouTube Partner Program policies." So far so good, but then walked that slam back: "To clarify, in order to reinstate monetization on this channel, he will need to remove the link to his T-shirts."
Ri-ght. It then quickly clarified its clarification to say it's not just about the T-shirts: "Sorry for the confusion, we were responding to your tweets about the T-shirts. Again, [Crowder's] channel is demonetized due to continued egregious actions that have harmed the broader community. To be reinstated, he will need to address all of the issues with his channel."
But as Maza pointed out, it isn't even about ad revenue '' it's about popularity-driven merchandise, speaking gigs, book deals, and so on: "The problem is that YouTube allows monsters and bullies to become superstars, break YouTube's rules, build an army of loyal, radicalized followers, and then make millions selling them merch that sustains their work."
Back to Apple With all that said, for copyright complaints, however, YouTube has an unambiguous system in place.
David Paris, a board member at Australian advocacy group Digital Rights Watch, was among those who noted on Twitter that several videos of the shocked WWDC crowd on YouTube have been disabled.
Apple kills iTunes, preps pricey Mac Pro, gives iPad its own OS '' plus: That $999 monitor stand READ MORE Apple's takedown appears to be half-hearted, however. Other videos of the crowd's stunned reaction could still be viewed at the time this article was filed, not to mention a version that sounds as if they've been altered with an artificial laugh track.
Apple's apparent sensitivity to customer gasps has not yet affected its own keynote video, which remains publicly accessible. Anyone wishing to review the official version of events can jump ahead to 01:42:05. We've also uploaded an MP3 file, listen below, that preserves the moment of murmuring for posterity, because you never know when history may be hidden from view. ®
Audio clip of crowd reaction to Apple Pro Stand price
VIDEO - ABC News on Twitter: "''I've never seen an assault on the media as savage as this'... I've never seen a warrant this comprehensive & I'd say scary'... The chilling message is not so much for the journalists, but it's also for the public,'' head of
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 21:44
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VIDEO - How Ring's 'Neighbors' Creates Safer, More Connected Communities - The Ring Blog
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 18:11
Last May, we launched the Neighbors app, a big step toward making security accessible and affordable for everyone. Neighbors is a security solution that every community member, regardless of whether or not they own a Ring device, can use. When communities work with one another, safer neighborhoods become a reality '' it's as simple as that. The Neighbors app enables community members '' and, in some cases, law enforcement '' to work together in order to reduce crime. We are humbled by the impact Neighbors has had since it launched '' here are some of my favorite examples:
Neighbors is a major step forward in advancing the Ring mission, which has been clear and enduring since I created Ring four years ago: to reduce crime in neighborhoods. We, as a company, are unapologetically passionate about this. Our dedication to our mission is evident in our relentless pursuit of building a world-class security company. Our customers share with us their stories on how Ring helped them identify a package thief or how Ring helped them prevent a break-in every single day, which continues to inspire me and the Ring team to stay focused on putting an end to neighborhood crime and creating a positive impact for our neighbors.
Criminals and thieves take note: our team is working tirelessly to stop you and make safer neighborhoods for our families to live in.
Our customers and Neighbors app users place their trust in us to help protect their homes and communities and we take that responsibility incredibly seriously. Here is the promise we have made to our customers and users:
Users have full control of who views their Ring footage. Only the content that a user chooses to make publicly available on Neighbors (by posting it to the app) can be viewed via the Neighbors app or by local law enforcement.Ring does not view or share a user's videos that are not posted to the app without the user's express permission or a valid and binding legal demand properly served on us.Ring will continue to innovate on behalf of our customers to help make neighborhoods safer. We will do so with our customers, their privacy, and the security of their information at the top of our priority list. We know that our customers place a huge amount of trust in us and we have every intention of continuing to earn that trust.At the end of the day, we want to use technology in a way that helps people and creates safer communities. Neighbors is an incredible resource for anyone who wants to join us in that fight and that's why I love the Neighbors app so much '' it provides a place for community members to come together and have a real conversation about what's happening in their neighborhoods. We realize that there are many intricacies involved in fighting crime and facilitating community discussions so we have outlined exactly how Neighbors works below. But we are always looking at ways to improve our services and want to hear your suggestions, simply email neighbors@ring.com.
When we band together on a network like Neighbors, neighborhood criminals don't stand a chance.
Jamie
How Neighbors Works
Download Neighbors on iOS and Android and opt-in to join your neighborhood (U.S. only).We do not display personal information like names in the Neighbors app, and we do not share personal information with other users of the app.Customize the geographic area you want to receive notifications for (users must verify where they are located). Your Neighbors app feed is hyper-local and features content posted by users who live near you. We built the app this way so that the content in the app is relevant to you and your community.Receive real-time crime and safety alerts from your neighbors, local law enforcement and the Ring team.View local crime and safety posts via a live feed or interactive map.Share text updates, photos and videos taken on any device, including but not limited to Ring's home security devices. Only content that a Neighbors user chooses to share on the Neighbors app is publicly accessible through the Neighbors app or by your local law enforcement.Work with your community to make neighborhoods safer.Using Neighbors Responsibly
Neighbors is designed to be an open space for people who wish to make their community safer. Our aim is to keep Neighbors content and conversations focused on crime and safety while allowing for constructive and open communication between community members. Therefore, everyone who uses Neighbors must adhere to the Community Guidelines. Per those guidelines, Ring does not tolerate discrimination, threats, or bullying, and we encourage users to treat their neighbors (and those visiting and passing through the neighborhood) with respect. We also provide guidance, encouraging users to carefully consider the behavior that made them suspicious of others and whether such suspicion is reasonable, and not post pictures or videos of people taken where they had a reasonable expectation of privacy without their knowledge or consent (for example, users should not post photos or videos of their neighbor's backyard).
We believe event detection, notification, and communication can foster stronger and safer communities, but accuracy and accountability are equally important. A dedicated group of Ring team members proactively moderates content before it is posted to the Neighbors app to ensure all posts are in accordance with the Community Guidelines. Plus, users have the power to flag incorrect or inappropriate content on Neighbors directly in the app. Our team reviews flagged posts and, if the content violates one of our Community Guidelines, it will be removed from the content feed. When we deny posts as part of our pre-moderation process, we send an email to the Neighbors user who submitted the post to let them know why. By educating our users on why their post did not make it to their feed, we reinforce our guidelines and help our users make responsible decisions.
Equally important, we welcome feedback from our communities and are always looking at ways to improve our service. We recognize the intricacies involved in an app like Neighbors and understand that the issues of crime and safety need to be approached with compassion and balance.
Local Law Enforcement on Neighbors
Neighbors partners with local law enforcement so they can share official, important crime and safety updates and work together with their local community to build trust and make neighborhoods safer. We are proud to have partnerships with many law enforcement agencies across the country in states including Florida, California, and Texas. When new law enforcement agencies come on board, we announce the partnership in-app via a regional announcement so users are aware. We've also taken care to design these partnerships in a way that keeps users in control.
When using Neighbors, law enforcement see the same interface that all users see; the content is the same, the exact locations of posts are obfuscated, and the user's personal identity is not displayed. There are two key differences, though: 1) law enforcement can view public posts from within their jurisdiction (instead of just their 'neighborhood') and 2) law enforcement posts are identified so users can clearly see that they are the source of the content. This means that posts or comments made by law enforcement are clearly marked with their official title and name.
Law enforcement can only view the publicly available content in the Neighbors app, unless a user explicitly and voluntarily chooses to share their own recordings with law enforcement (more on how this works below). Exact locations of devices and user information are never provided to law enforcement without a user's express permission or a valid and binding legal demand properly served on us.
Law enforcement can request information from users within their jurisdiction (Ring sends the official request to users). Law enforcement must reference a relevant case number in order to make a request within a specific, limited time range and area. Ring will then ask a targeted group of users in that area if they are willing to share any relevant footage with law enforcement. It's then up to the user to share their video file(s) or decline the request. Users can also opt out of all future requests by law enforcement. Again, Ring will not release user information without a user's express permission or a valid and binding legal demand properly served on us.
VIDEO - [The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump] | C-SPAN.org
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 16:50
March 19, 2019 2019-03-23T13:00:32-04:00 https://images.c-span.org/Files/a26/20190323145602002_hd.jpg Yale Professor Bandy Lee and scholars in the fields of law, political science, history, climatology, and social psychology, discussed the mental health of President Trump.Yale Professor Bandy Lee and scholars in the fields of law, political science, history, climatology, and social psychology, discussed the mental health of President Trump.
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*This transcript was compiled from uncorrected Closed Captioning.
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Hosting OrganizationNational Press ClubNational Press Club SeriesBook TVBooksTruth in Our Times
David E. McCraw
The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump
Bandy X. Lee
VIDEO - Pelosi: Can you believe that the rubes think impeachment is removal?
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 16:30
Is the only obstacle to impeachment for Nancy Pelosi the ignorance of the American public? The Democratic argument on ''educating'' voters on the need to impeach Donald Trump is already condescending enough, but '... hoo boy. In her daily briefing with reporters, Pelosi declares her mystification as to how people can confuse impeachment with removal, and lets her elitist flag fly while doing so:
Speaker Pelosi on the concept of impeachment, and what she says many in the public think happens with impeachment: "They think that you get impeached '-- you're gone '-- and that is completely not true." pic.twitter.com/Yyc9URNdRy
'-- NBC Politics (@NBCPolitics) June 5, 2019
First of all, I travel all the time in the country. Do you know what most people think '-- that impeachment means you're out of office? Did you ever get that feeling, or are you just in the bubble here? They think that you get impeached, you're gone, and that is completely not true. And I may have thought that myself fifty years ago.
But you get impeached, and it's an indictment. It's an indictment. So when you're impeaching someone, you want to make sure you have the strongest possible indictment. Because it's not the means to the end that people think. ''All you do '-- vote to impeach '-- bye bye birdie.'' [Laughs] It isn't that. It's an indictment, so you want to have the best possible indictment, going through, ah, the legal process, in a way that shows accommodation, that we need the courts to rule in our favor because we've done it correctly, and the rest.
So it is, ah, it is the business of the committees to do that, and when they decide how their accommodations and their conversations are going, then we respect that.
The last half of this argument is all but incoherent. Technically speaking, the courts have no role in impeachment. If the House wants to impeach, it can do so on its own, regardless of whether people respond to subpoenas. In this case especially, Congress has the results of an outside investigation that has already done all of this work. It didn't provide anywhere near a politically prima facie case for impeachment, which is why the committees are trying to redo the Robert Mueller investigation on their own, but the courts have no role to play in the impeachment process.
The first part of Pelosi's argument is arrogant beyond belief, and at least as disingenuous. Thanks to the shared national experience of 1998, most people are painfully aware that impeachment and removal are two different processes. News coverage of this fight continually references the unlikelihood of the latter with Republicans controlling the Senate. There may be a few people outside of Pelosi's enlightened ''bubble'' of Beltway denizens and journalists who confuse the two, but I'd wager it's not many '-- and it's not important anyway.
The most disingenuous part of this argument is Pelosi's implication that impeachment is completely separate from removal. That's as asinine an argument as anyone's likely to make. The sole purpose of impeachment in the House is to push for removal from office by the Senate. It has no other constitutional consequence, no other outcome other than removal or non-removal by acquittal. If the House wants to just paint Trump with a black mark on his record, Pelosi could choose to censure him, which also has no real consequence but doesn't attempt to undo an election.
Voters understand exactly what Democrats pushing impeachment want. That's why Pelosi's hands are tied, and why she's lashing out at them today.
VIDEO - World Exclusive: Piers Morgan Interviews Donald Trump | Good Morning Britain - YouTube
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 12:12
VIDEO - Good Morning Britain on Twitter: "Does the US President believe in climate change? Trump says he discussed climate change with Prince Charles, who he believes is 'a very good person' who 'wants to have a world that's good for future generations'.'
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 12:08
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VIDEO - Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Twitter: "Today, after YEARS of GOP refusal, the House finally voted on the DREAM Act under a Dem majority. The moment when it passed was like a rock concert 🎸 The people's cheers brought many, many members to tear
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 11:43
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VIDEO - No Recorded Telemetry Data From Moon Missions, All Lost? | 2017 - YouTube
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 04:22
VIDEO - Sam Sokol on Twitter: "I... can't even... what?'... "
Wed, 05 Jun 2019 03:52
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VIDEO - Noddy Thoughts on Twitter: "UK Chants We Love Trump https://t.co/pcRpkdtSrq via @YouTube"
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 19:15
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VIDEO - Joe Biden on Twitter: "We are in a climate emergency and we must take drastic action now to address it. So today, I'm announcing my plan for a Clean Energy Revolution and Environmental Justice. https://t.co/FbsOsyQkIo'... https://t.co/ghbFDuhhZt"
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 19:09
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VIDEO - Do Transgender Athletes Have an Advantage in Female Sporting Events? | Good Morning Britain - YouTube
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 17:56
VIDEO - Austin City Council could discuss and repeal panhandling ordinance
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 17:51
AUSTIN (KXAN) '-- The Austin City Council is scheduled to discuss and possibly vote Thursday on an ordinance that will change the city's rules about aggressive panhandling.
The proposal repeals Austin's anti-panhandling ordinance, which:
Bans aggressive solicitation Bans panhandling at bus stops, near schools and near ATM's or banks In downtown, panhandling is banned between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. The proposal also eases restrictions of Austin's "no sit/no lie" rules and camping rules. Those ordinances, passed in 2005 and updated in 2011, keep people from sitting or lying down in right of ways and sidewalks downtown. Exceptions apply to people who have disabilities or are experiencing medical emergencies.
"Austin's service providers, housing advocates, legal advocates, and our public safety officials all agree: We won't be able to arrest away our city's homelessness problem," said Council Member Greg Casar. "Asking for money, sitting or lying down in public, and sleeping in tents are basic requirements of survival, especially while homeless."
Mark Hilbelink, Director of Sunrise Homeless Navigation Center, told KXAN these rules unnecessarily criminalize homelessness.
"They can serve as inhibitors toward people getting the help that they actually need," he explained.
According to a 2017 city audit, Austin issued about 18,000 citations in two years to people who violated the panhandling, no sit/lie and camping rules. Most of them didn't show up for their court dates, which then led to warrants being issued.
"They can cause a lot of damage in your life than do good for the society," said Heilbelink about the warrants.
He said, "There might be programs you're excluded from like housing programs. There might be job opportunities you might get passed up for because you have those warrants that are listed."
Instead of criminalizing homelessness, Hilbelink said, the city should look for different ways, such as creating more shelters and addressing the housing and health care needs to solve homelessness.
Mayor of Austin Steve Adler agreed this is a complex issue, but he said the city needs more time to make decisions. "The most important thing for us right now is to recognize that this is a multifaceted problem, and we're going to solve it if we bring everybody together."
Monday, the Downtown Austin Alliance also called for taking more time to discuss the issue before repealing the panhandling rule and changing the no sit/lie and camping rules.
"We'd like to slow down the process to provide that opportunity for community input," said Bill Brice, the Downtown Austin Alliance's Vice President of Investor Relations.
"In the city that historically has tremendous dialogue around every issue, especially political issues, issues involving the government, we feel it's critically important to allow the community to have dialogue around this issue," Brice said.
Brice said he's concerned repealing the panhandling ordinance right now would lead to public health and public safety issues.
He added the number one reason visitors say they will not return to downtown is aggressive panhandling.
"We hear every week, story after story of people who are here, whether visitors or locals, who are aggressively panhandled, and I mean in ways that are threatening, being touched, being screamed at, being threatened with physical violence. These are real concerns the community has," Brice said.
VIDEO - CNN President: Fox News Is 'State-Run TV', CNN Looks For 'Truth' - YouTube
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 16:19
VIDEO - Nets Giddy Over 'Hundreds of Thousands' Protesting 'Deeply Unpopular' Trump in London
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 14:26
All three networks spent their morning shows again hyping protests in London over President Trump's visit with departing Prime Minister Theresa May and the royal family.
ABC's foreign correspondent Ian Pannell was clearly excited by the protesters, inflating their numbers while speaking on their behalf as if he were a protester himself, even admitting the only reason he was there was to cover the protesters:
[B]ut the reason we're here today is for the people out here, thousands, tens of thousands possibly even hundreds of thousands are expected to gather here today. They're not against America. They are against the President and the official visit here to the UK. They're against the man, the policy, the word, the deed, and that is why they've come out here.
...
There's even a giant robot that's come all the way from Philadelphia and it spouts out famous phrases he likes to use like fake news and 'no collusion.
CBS wasn't any less obnoxious, touting the protests in two separate reports from correspondent Paula Reid. Reid touted the ''thousands'' of protesters in the streets but dejectedly noted it was a ''smaller group than expected.'' Like the other networks, Reid highlighted the return of the ''baby Trump'' balloon from last year's protests.
Anchor Tony Dokoupil was amused by the baby Trump balloon and said while laughing, ''Who could forget the balloon? I think they had it last year as well.''
In another report, Reid and Dokoupil actually claimed that the protests against Trump were his own fault.
Dokoupil eagerly asked Reid when they could hear more from Trump's ''opponents,'' ie, the protesters. Reid snarked that Trump could make enemies even in a country that was one of our closest allies:
That's right Tony. Even when visiting one of our closest allies the President still manages to find adversaries and those protesting, you mentioned, are happening just a short distance from here... the dull roar from those protests serves as a reminder that even though London's ruling elite is rolling out the red carpet for President Trump, not everyone is happy that he's here.
Finally, in NBC's short report from Peter Alexander, he touted Trump's ''deep unpopularity'' in the city while gushing that the baby balloon was ''ready to launch.'' Even after sharing the President's schedule for the day, all anchor Savannah Guthrie cared about was the anti-Trump protesters, eagerly asking again if Alexander had ''seen the protesters'' yet.
Read the relevant transcripts from ABC, CBS and NBC's morning news shows below:
ABC's Good Morning America
6/4/2019
7:05:09-7:06:08AM
ROBIN ROBERTS: As we've seen President Trump's visit it is sparking protests in the UK. Our senior foreign correspondent Ian Pannell is in London with all that Good morning, Ian.
IAN PANNELL: Yeah, good morning, Robin. From the famous Trafalgar Square, the statue of Nelson's Column is behind me but the reason we're here today is for the people out here, thousands, tens of thousands possibly even hundreds of thousands are expected to gather here today. They're not against America. They are against the President and the official visit here to the UK. They're against the man, the policy, the word, the deed, and that is why they've come out here. We can see it in all the placards that are out there. There's even a giant robot that's come all the way from Philadelphia and it spouts out famous phrases he likes to use like fake news and 'no collusion. The plan today is to March down to Westminster to make their voices heard. But there's a ring of steel around the President, the chances are he may not hear what's happening but they'll still go on and protest, George.
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: Ian Pannell in London, thank you.
'...
CBS This Morning
6/4/2019
7:06:52-7:07:33
TONY DOKOUPIL: Paula, we're seeing protests happening in London right now in fact. What can we expect on that front today?
PAULA REID: Tony, we can actually hear several thousand protesters demonstrating not far from here, but we're told it's a considerably smaller group than what was expected. Among those protesters is opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn. He boycotted last night's state banquet but he is expected to address the demonstrations. Now one of the groups is employing a large balloon depicting President Trump as a giant orange baby in a diaper clutching an iPhone. The organizer says the balloon is meant to send a message to President Trump that he's not welcome here.
DOKOUPIL: [chuckling] Paula Reid in London for us. Paula thank you. Who could forget the balloon? I think they had it last year as well.
'...
8:02:12-8:03:06AM
ANTHONY MASON: Thousands of people of London are protesting near President Trump's meeting with Prime Minister Theresa May, as day two of the president's three-day visit.
TONY DOKOUPIL: This morning London Mayor Sadiq Khan called Mr. Trump a poster boy for the far right movement around the world and the president called Khan a stone cold loser yesterday, Paula Reid is outside 10 Downing Street where the President and May are meeting. Paula, we expected to hear more from the president's opponents.
PAULA REID: That's right, Tony, even when visiting one of our closest allies the President still manages to find adversaries and those protesting, you mentioned, are happening just a short distance from here at ten downing street. We're inside the president and prime minister are still in a working lunch, but the dull roar from those protests serves as a reminder that even though London's ruling elite is rolling out the red carpet for President Trump, not everyone is happy that he's here.
...
NBC's Today
6/4/2019
7:04:23-7:05:42am
PETER ALEXANDER: This morning across London large protests expected against the President who's deeply unpopular here. That Trump baby balloon? Ready for launch. The backlash less than 24 hours after President Trump tweeted, haven't seen any protests yet. Great love all around. As for his plans today, the expectation was that President Trump would meet with Theresa May one-on-one. Now both sides are going to bring delegations with them before a news conference at her office 10 Downing Street. Then the Prime Minister and the President will look at the Churchill war rooms. It's an underground bunker where Winston Churchill led Allied efforts during WWII. Finally tonight President Trump will host a dinner for dignitaries including Prince Charles and Camilla at the U.S. Ambassador's residence right here in London. Savannah?
SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: You're about five hours ahead of us there in London. Have you seen those protests, Peter?
ALEXANDER: Right now there are about 10,000 protesters that have gathered in Trafalgar square. We can show you some pictures as we speak. The wet weather, though, it's been raining hard in the last few minutes. That could really dampen these demonstrations. The streets have been shut down to allow those protests. You'll remember, the protesters got the green light from London's Mayor Sadiq Khan who traded insults with President Trump before the president even arrived.
VIDEO - Netherlands Embassy 🇺🇸 on Twitter: "''The relationship between the United States and the Netherlands is a special one. It is the longest unbroken peaceful relationship between the US and any foreign country,'' @ministerblok met @secpompeo
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 13:06
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VIDEO - The Hill on Twitter: "Joe Biden speaks in Columbus, OH: "We've already had five, just this year, we've already had five black transgender women killed violently in 2019. It's outrageous. It must, it must, it must end. And the fastest way to end it
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 12:34
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VIDEO - Keeping out the trash? RT's Keiser Report checks one of the biggest wars & it's not about garbage '-- RT Business News
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 11:48
While trash wars around the world are escalating, with the Philippines-Canada spat as the latest example, something no less intense is happening in the United States.
RT's Keiser Report looks into media discussions about the people of Mountain View, California reportedly cracking down on a growing RV camp outside Google headquarters. The incident follows Silicon Valley locals' chanting two years ago to 'build a wall' to keep homeless people out.
''That's I think one of the biggest wars that actually has been going out,'' says Stacy Herbert, explaining that ''it's a class issue; it is war against poor people.''
Max Keiser compares that to medieval deranged minds, while Stacy adds that the population of Silicon Valley and Mountain View truly believes that ''they are astoundingly good human beings.''
For more stories on economy & finance visit RT's business section
VIDEO - 636: Appification Generation | No Agenda Player
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 11:37
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VIDEO - WWDC19 - YouTube-behavioural modification
Tue, 04 Jun 2019 00:29
VIDEO - 'Protest Against Trumpism!': Leftists Melt Down over President's State Visit | Breitbart
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 20:13
A number of British leftists have begun the ritualistic histrionics as President Donald J Trump arrived for his three-day State Visit to the UK, with some calling the President a 'climate change denier', ''misogynist'', and a ''warmonger''.The most prominent performances of anti-Trump theatrics came from the Labour Party and its London mayor Sadiq Khan, who wrote on Sunday that President Trump was a ''global threat''.
President Trump hit back early on Monday morning, even before touching down on English soil, calling Khan a ''stone cold loser'' and ''dumb and incompetent''.
Mayor of London, @SadiqKhan has a message for @realDonaldTrump on his arrival to London about how women ought to be treated globally. 'Dear Trump'...' https://t.co/hJ5uhS9wU6 pic.twitter.com/MwlwJu5Lpf
'-- ELLEUK (@ELLEUK) June 3, 2019
The latest feeble attack from Khan came via a recorded video message in partnership with women's magazine Elle, where he asks the President to rethink ''how women ought to be treated globally''.
Sad-faced and holding up a sign reading ''Dear Trump'', Khan said that President Trump's values are not the same ''as London's or this country'', saying: ''We think that diversity is a strength.''
Resist sexismResist racismResist hateResist crueltyRESIST TRUMP.
We're with activists right now opposite US Embassy at Vauxall Bridge dropping 'Resist Trump' banners ''Š''ŠðŸ½''ŠðŸ pic.twitter.com/RQKJY7jPFK
'-- Amnesty UK (@AmnestyUK) June 3, 2019
In response to President Trump's criticisms of Khan, leader of the Labour Party and socialist Jeremy Corbyn made a rally cry on Twitter in support of the London mayor, who has overseen a dramatic rise in crime in his three years in office, for more leftists to pour into London on Tuesday for an anti-Trump protest.
The far-leftist, who will be speaking at the event, said that he would be there to support those the President had ''attacked'' in the U.S., ''around the world and in our own country '-- including, just this morning, Sadiq Khan''.
Fellow Labour politicians David Lammy and Diane Abbott came to the defence of Khan, with Lammy calling the President ''extreme right'' and Abbott calling for more protesters to join the ''Labour bloc''.
Wonder why you have a problem with London's first ever Muslim mayor? Sadiq Khan stands taller than you ever will, in solidarity with London and more than half of Americans who reject your extreme right politics. If the polling is correct, the only loser here will be you in 2020. https://t.co/DUa8y0IjI8
'-- David Lammy (@DavidLammy) June 3, 2019
Pleased to be joining Tuesday's #TogetherAgainstTrump protest.You can see details of the Labour bloc at https://t.co/g3a9wE3tiGRT if you stand in solidarity with those he's attacked in the US, around the world and in our own country '' including @SadiqKhan.
'-- Diane Abbott (@HackneyAbbott) June 3, 2019
However, not all in the left-wing Labour Party jumped on the Hate Trump bandwagon, with pro-Brexit, classic Labour MP for Vauxhall Kate Hoey saying she was ''saddened'' by the ''hysterical reaction'' to President Trump's visit ''by some Labour colleagues''.
Leader of the Remain-backing Liberal Democrats Vince Cable claimed that the pro-Brexit, Anglophile President Trump should not be granted a State Visit because he is ''actively working against British interests'' and damaging the ''traditional alliance'' between the two countries.
Anti-Brexit campaigner and Labour peer Andrew Andonis said it was ''shameful'' that neither Prime Minister Theresa May nor foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt ''defended Sadiq Khan against Trump'' '-- despite the mayor being a member of the opposition party and not sitting in government.
Tomorrow's protest against Donald Trump's state visit is an opportunity to stand in solidarity with those he's attacked in America, around the world and in our own country '' including, just this morning, @SadiqKhan.
'-- Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) June 3, 2019
Guardian opinion writer and LGBT activist Owen Jones branded the President a ''racist clown'' and called for the amassing of protesters to march against ''racism, Islamophobia, misogyny, climate crisis, and flogging off our NHS to US multinationals'', later tweeting: ''Don't just protest against Donald Trump the man. Protest against Trumpism in this country, too '-- from anti-Muslim hatred to climate crisis, from misogyny to warmongering.''
The establishment media was also out showcasing its anti-Trump credentials, with Sky News posting video on Twitter announcing ''he's back'' while the tiny Trump baby protest balloon '-- scheduled to make an appearance at tomorrow's protest '-- floats above London, blotting out the sun.
.@realDonaldTrump has arrived in the UK for his three-day #statevisit.
Watch full coverage on @SkyNews #TrumpUKVisit
You can find us on Sky channel 501 ðŸ'º or live here á½ https://t.co/mFrfbZynow pic.twitter.com/zmvAICdj82
'-- Sky News (@SkyNews) June 3, 2019
While the ''babysitter'' of the balloon Anna Vickerstaff, who says she ''organise[s] on climate and deportation'', told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that the balloon represents President Trump's ''violent politics'' and she believes that President Trump will take time out of his schedule to pay attention, hoping that the undersized balloon will ''prick his ego''.
''This is a protest in solidarity with American people affected by Trump.
''A protest against rolling out the carpet for a man who regularly denies climate change and spouts misogyny''
Anna Vickerstaff is a 'Trump blimp babysitter'https://t.co/xVC5uZkDv8 #TrumpUKvisit pic.twitter.com/aBC3ts5kYO
'-- Victoria Derbyshire (@VictoriaLIVE) June 3, 2019
VIDEO - The Hillary Clinton Takeover of the United States - YouTube
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 14:43
VIDEO - Tommy Xtophernobyl on Twitter: "WOW. Chris Wallace tried to SILENCE Kirsten Gillibrand's criticism of Fox News and she was NOT having it. https://t.co/eKiikx6dOw" / Twitter
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 13:39
WOW. Chris Wallace tried to SILENCE Kirsten Gillibrand's criticism of Fox News and she was NOT having it.
pic.twitter.com/eKiikx6dOw
VIDEO - Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 on Twitter: "This is sick. Now CNN is helping the Daily Beast dox a Trump supporter for simply sharing a meme. No surprise it's Stelter These people have no shame https://t.co/U8uNsBBbTs"
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 12:12
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VIDEO - Aaron Rupar on Twitter: "Holy shit Jared Kushner is even more of an embarrassment than I thought. This clip is brutal. https://t.co/yvxxNPc5J6"
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 12:10
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VIDEO - Candace Owens on Twitter: "Why are feminists silent about Craig Telfer'-- the MAN who was ranked 390th in the NCAA track and field division'-- and so simply decided he now identifies as a woman. Cece Telfer'-- still a MAN, is now ranked #1, having
Mon, 03 Jun 2019 12:09
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Pantsy Explosi (Pelosi) Understands the impeachment problem.mp3
Pelosi - Trump is not defending the Constitution.wav
Austin City Council could discuss and repeal panhandling ordinance.mp3
Pieczenik on giving emails to Assange-counter coup-Nov1 2016.mp3
CNN Stelter Daily Beast dude-doxxing Pelosi hoax video creator-not so much.mp3
Jeff Zucker on Cable News Political Landscape-CNN seeks the truth LOL.mp3
hilliary makes a predicition in 2015 ABC news.mp3
jaime raskin 2 nixon PBS.mp3
oegon climate change lawsuit DN.mp3
reporter screeching at Trump.mp3
ridiculous trumps lies PBS important.mp3
sadiq kahn loser ISO.mp3
scot peterson arrested for being a bad cop.mp3
the nasty comment with proof CBS.mp3
trump in UK then Ireland weak report PBS.mp3
trump presser UK on Kahn theme.mp3
trump presser UK One.mp3
trump wpuld talk with Iran PBS.mp3
walmart native ad CBS.mp3
youtube current bans PBS.mp3
arms sales news PBS.mp3
bogus red mean white meat study CBS.mp3
brennans security clearance pu_led last year sanders.mp3
cuba ships banned CBS.mp3
dsouza on MLK revelations fox.mp3
duck farm protest in Norcal DN.mp3
Apple removes boos about 999 monitor stand at WWDC19.mp3
RING Police Promo Winter Park Florida-Neighbors App.mp3
ABC News Exec tweeting about AFP raid do search remove and delete dcuments.mp3
Australia first Journo targeted.mp3
Axios interviews Jared on Trump racism-birtherism-intro to Johanna-CP5.mp3
Carlos Maza - Vox Strikethrough on GATEKEEPRS and Fox News.mp3
CBS This Morning on Trump UK Visit and Balloon-iPhone.mp3
GMA on Trump UK visit.mp3
Sadiq Khan with ELLE UK Anti Trump Video.mp3
Trump with Piers on Prince Charles and Climate Change.mp3
Marcia Cross Desperate Housewives actress beats anal cancer-to mouth with husband.mp3
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    minding their own business and they're
  • 0:45
    accumulating water mm-hmm and so they
  • 0:49
    get to be huge some of them look huge
  • 0:51
    and they're filled with water and some
  • 0:54
    seeds yeah and they're hoping here we go
  • 0:59
    the environmental activist John C Dvorak
  • 1:02
    aside we've never seen before it's it's
  • 1:04
    really it's quite touching yeah and then
  • 1:07
    the watermelon would like reproduce but
  • 1:09
    no people would go eat the watermelon
  • 1:11
    that's not true cruel watermelons
  • 1:14
    reproduce all the time just look at John
  • 1:16
    Kerry's head all right we might as well
  • 1:21
    start right away with setting something
  • 1:22
    very straight with our producers yeah
  • 1:25
    because I've seen at least 10 different
  • 1:29
    tweets can't wait for you guys to
  • 1:32
    deconstruct this box pocalypse box ad
  • 1:38
    pocalypse box ad D monetization scandal
  • 1:43
    so we need to once and for all clarify
  • 1:46
    what's going on have you followed any of
  • 1:48
    this with the youtubes with their new
  • 1:50
    rules and and D monetizing thousands
  • 1:56
    well I was thinking about this and I was
  • 2:01
    thinking about you
  • 2:05
    what I was thinking about was would you
  • 2:09
    you or yeah I'm probably in the camp too
  • 2:12
    why is you two paying anybody anything
  • 2:14
    okay well you're actually jumping ahead
  • 2:18
    before we get to that point just a quick
  • 2:21
    background err um this is a game and the
  • 2:24
    game typically plays out on Twitter with
  • 2:26
    verified badges and the game is let's
  • 2:30
    see first if you can get a badge and
  • 2:32
    then if you have a badge you have to
  • 2:33
    fight against everybody else who has a
  • 2:35
    badge who you don't like so their badge
  • 2:38
    can be taken away this is the verified
  • 2:40
    status either that any badge has been
  • 2:42
    taken away oh yes oh yes people have
  • 2:45
    been unverified oh yeah it's great it's
  • 2:49
    like some punishment you're no longer
  • 2:51
    verified okay I guess now that's that's
  • 2:55
    part of the punishment but now but now
  • 2:58
    we have YouTube where we have people
  • 3:03
    fighting this political discourse and
  • 3:06
    then saying you know one youtuber says
  • 3:09
    something to another youtuber and I
  • 3:11
    guess even crowder criticized carlos
  • 3:15
    masa of Vox who does a kind of
  • 3:19
    provocative gay he's gay
  • 3:21
    but you know gayish videos trying to you
  • 3:25
    know basically call people out to do