1154: Goldfish Invasion

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

2h 41m
July 11th, 2019
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Executive Producers: Jacobina Kunnen Dame Of the Doomesday Deniers, Sir Sean Fincham, Matthew Wilber, Anonymous

Associate Executive Producers: Knoxville TN Meetup, Sir Manischewitz, Vasilios Plangetis, Albert Pieter Jurgen Verheij, Sir Tim of the Tunnels, Baron Dick Bangs of DC, Eric Woerdeman, Baroness of Kendall, Sir Antonio of Madrid

Cover Artist: Alexander Norrie


Start of Show
'The Loudest Voice' TV Show
Jeffrey Epstein
Invasive Goldfish Species Spotted in Canada
Wall Street Journal: 'As the Deutsche Bank Turns'
HF Radio Propagation Disrupted During Earthquake on US West Coast
Police Arrest Mother for Leaving Baby in Hot Car
Judge Blocks Rule Requiring Drug Companies to List Prices in Television Advertisements
CNN Announces Rules for Next Democratic Presidential Debates
American Descendants of Slavery
Jeh Johnson on Illegal Immigration on Democracy Now!
US Women Soccer Player Megan Rapinoe
Marc Pritchard Keynote at Adcolor Reference
Twitter Outage
Birthdays & Title Changes
Federal Appeals Court Rules Trump Violated the First Amendment by Blocking His Critics on Twitter
Trump's Social Media Summit
Sir Kim Darroch Resigns as UK's Ambassador to the US
Christine Lagarde on Regulating Cryptocurrencies
Tesla Fails to Pay Rent to Supercharging Station in Utah
End of Show
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Quantian on Twitter: "So, apologies in advance, but I want to do a quick little THREAD to explain my theory of what the Epstein story really is. I promise this isn't some crazy Pizzagate conspiracy about space lizards, just a neat little explanation that
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 18:19
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Les Wexner - Wikipedia
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 20:22
Leslie H. Wexner (born September 8, 1937) is a billionaire American businessman.
He is chairman and CEO of the L Brands (formerly Limited Brands) corporation. He is a billionaire and has been a philanthropist to diverse charities and a significant donor to political campaigns.
Early life and education [ edit ] Wexner was born to a Jewish family[4] in Dayton, Ohio,[5] to Bella (n(C)e Cabakoff) and Harry Wexner.[6] He has one sister, Susan.[6] He attended Ohio State University, majoring in business administration.[5] He became a member of Sigma Alpha Mu fraternity. He briefly attended the Moritz College of Law.
Career [ edit ] Wexner started working in his parents' clothing store. While they were away on vacation he analyzed the profit and loss margins on the women's clothing they sold. He found that although higher-priced clothing (e.g. jackets) cost more money, they sold less frequently than blouses, which sold at a faster rate. When he told his father this, however, his father was not interested in changing his inventory.[7]
In 1963, Wexner was lent $5,000 from an aunt to start The Limited (so named because the store focused on a limited amount of merchandise that turned over quickly and had a higher profit margin, unlike his parents' store).[7]
The Limited opened its first store in the Kingsdale Shopping Center in Upper Arlington, Ohio, a suburb of Columbus. Wexner's parents closed their store a year later and joined their son at The Limited. Wexner took Limited Brands public in 1969, listed as LTD on the NYSE. Wexner is the longest serving CEO of a Fortune 500 company.[8] Wexner was ranked #11 on Harvard Business Review's Top 100 Best Performing CEOs of 2015, and #34 in 2016.[9][10]
Over the years, Wexner built a retailing and marketing conglomerate, which currently includes:Victoria's Secret, Pink (Victoria's Secret), Bath & Body Works, Henri Bendel, The White Barn Candle Company, and La Senza. Previous brands that have spun off include: Lane Bryant, Abercrombie & Fitch, Lerner New York, The Limited Too (now Tween Brands, Inc.), Structure 9, Aura Science, The Limited (which has closed all of its brick-and-mortar stores, but retaining its online presence), and Express (which has closed all of its Canadian stores and hundreds of its U.S.-based stores).
Philanthropy and service [ edit ] In 1989, Wexner and his mother Bella were the first to make a $1 million personal donation to the United Way. Both of their names were inscribed in marble, and are on display in the lobby of the United Way Headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia.[11]
Wexner is the wealthiest man in Ohio.[12] He is known for his philanthropy, often to Jewish and Catholic projects. He serves as honorary vice chairman of Congregation Agudas Achim, in Bexley. He was a major funder of the Wexner Center for the Arts at the Ohio State University, the name of which is intended to honor his father.[13]
In 1984, he established the Wexner Foundation whose goal is to strengthen the field of Jewish leadership. The foundation runs three major programs: the Wexner Heritage Program for North American Jewish volunteers; the Graduate Fellowship for students pursuing a master's degree in the rabbinate, cantorate, or Jewish studies; and an Israel Fellowship which funds Israeli public officials for a master's degree in public administration from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government.[citation needed ]
Wexner served on the board of trustees of Ohio State University from 1988 to 1997. In December 2005, Wexner was appointed to his second term and was elected chairman in 2009. It was announced in June 2012 that Wexner's chairmanship was to end, eight years before his appointment would have ended.[14]
On May 11, 2004, Wexner received the Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship at a dinner in Columbus, Ohio. The award was presented by the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC.
On February 16, 2011, Wexner pledged a donation of $100 million to Ohio State, which will be allocated to the University's academic Medical Center and James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute, with additional gifts to the Wexner Center for the Arts and other areas. This latest gift is the largest in the University's history.[15]
Through the L Brands Foundation, Wexner and L Brands contributed $163.4 million to the Columbus Foundation.[16]
On February 10, 2012, Ohio State University Medical Center officially changed its name to the Wexner Medical Center at Ohio State University commemorating "Mr. Wexner's indelible, lifelong legacy of leadership at Ohio State", according to university president E. Gordon Gee. "For more than three decades, Mr. Wexner has been one of the University's most committed leaders and ardent supporters. His generous contributions, both in time and resources, have been wholly transformational, but his most valuable gift has been his remarkable leadership."[17]
On December 11, 2013, Wexner was awarded the Women's Wear Daily Beauty Inc. Visionary award.[18]
Personal life [ edit ] On January 23, 1993, Wexner, then 55 years of age, married Abigail S. Koppel, 31, an attorney, in a ceremony at their home in New Albany, Ohio.[19] The couple have four children: Harry, Hannah, David, and Sarah.[20]
Formerly of the Bexley area of Columbus, Ohio, Wexner now lives in New Albany, a community northeast of that city. He owns a 30-room, $47 million, Georgian-inspired estate, on nearly 336 acres (4 km²), that was built in 1990. The estate, was, for twenty years, the location of the Annual New Albany Classic Invitational Grand Prix & Family Day benefiting The Center for Family Safety and Healing. The Classic consistently drew the top professional show jumping riders because of its elaborate and well-maintained jumping course.[citation needed ] In February 2018, Abigail Wexner announced the end of the event, citing the growing number of elite equestrian competitions.[21]
As a pun on his name and his former residence in Bexley, the village of New Albany was known (unofficially) for some time as Wexley. Today, this Georgian-themed village inspires comparison to eighteenth century developments by wealthy aristocrats in England.[citation needed ]
Wexner has owned the mid-eighteenth century Grade II* listed Foxcote House in Warwickshire, England, since 1997.[22]
At the time of its construction in 1997, Wexner's Limitless was the largest American-owned private yacht, measuring 315 feet and 8 inches (96.25 meters) long and 41 feet (12.50 meters) wide. Few authorized images exist, but photographs of the yacht's interior appear in an October 2016 retrospective of the career of the yacht's interior designer, Fran§ois Catroux, written by David Netto and published by Rizzoli.[23] The Limitless is one of the largest privately owned yachts in use.[24]
Wexner had a close relationship with Jeffrey Epstein, who managed Wexner's financial assets. Wexner and Epstein parted when Epstein went to prison.[25] Wexner was believed to be the primary source of Epstein's wealth. [26]
President George W. Bush appointed Wexner to serve in the Honorary Delegation to accompany him to Jerusalem for the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the State of Israel in May 2008.[27][28]
Wexner was inducted as an honorary member into the 104th Class of Sphinx Senior Class Honorary at The Ohio State University on May 7, 2010.[29]
On February 10, 2012, The Ohio State University board of trustees voted to rename The Ohio State University Medical Center in honor of Wexner, in recognition of his leadership and service to the university and the medical center. Now the medical center is known as Wexner Medical Center at Ohio State University.[30]
Political activities [ edit ] Wexner hosted a fundraiser for Mitt Romney in 2012.[31] Wexner donated $250,000 to Restore Our Future, Romney's Super PAC.[32] In 2015, Wexner donated $500,000 to the Right to Rise USA Super-Pac that supported the 2016 presidential campaign of Jeb Bush.[33]
The Columbus Dispatch reported on September 14, 2018 that Wexner had renounced his affiliation with the Republican Party due to changes in its nature. Wexner made his comment shortly after former President Obama gave a speech on the same Columbus Partnership panel Wexner would address.[34][35]
See also [ edit ] List of billionairesReferences [ edit ] ^ Forbes: The World's Billionaires - Leslie Wexner March 18, 2017 ^ "Wealthiest Republican supporter in Ohio quits party" . Retrieved 2018-09-15 . ^ Monthly, Suzanne Goldsmith, Senior Editor, Columbus. "Les Wexner renounces Republican Party affiliation after Obama stops in Columbus". dispatch.com . Retrieved 10 November 2018 . ^ Chernikoff, Helen; Kook, Elana (December 9, 2014). "Victoria's Other Secret: She Pays For Rabbinical SchoolCompany CEO Leslie Wexner, also the brains behind tonight's V.S. fashion show, has paid for 450 Jewish leaders' graduate educations". The New York Jewish Week. ^ a b "Leslie Wexner makes a $100 million donation to Ohio State University". Jewish Business News. 2013-07-08 . Retrieved 2017-03-15 . ^ a b New York Times: "Bella C. Wexner, 93, Matriarch of a Retail Chain" by Wolfgang Saxon November 10, 2001 ^ a b Alexander, Dan. "Victoria's Other Secret: The Low-Key Billionaire Behind The Lingerie Giant". Forbes . Retrieved 2016-09-28 . ^ Our annual ranking of America's largest corporations, CNN Money, May 21, 2012 ^ "The Best-Performing CEOs in the World". Harvard Business Review . Retrieved 2016-05-10 . ^ "The Best-Performing CEOs in the World". Harvard Business Review . Retrieved 2017-04-04 . ^ "Bella Wexner Dies in New York". Visual Merchandising and Store Design . Retrieved 2017-04-04 . ^ Stewart. "Six from Ohio, One from Dayton Area, Make Forbes' Billionaires List". ^ "History". wexarts.org . Retrieved 2016-05-10 . ^ "Leslie Wexner to step down from Ohio State Board of Trustees". News Room. June 8, 2012 . Retrieved 2016-05-10 . ^ "Philanthropy, High Points - The Ohio State University". www.osu.edu . Retrieved 25 May 2017 . ^ Price, Rita. "Columbus Foundation nets record $326.4 million in donations". The Columbus Dispatch . Retrieved 13 September 2013 . ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-04-05 . Retrieved 2012-02-10 . CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link) ^ Prior, Molly (December 13, 2013). "Leslie H. Wexner Reflects on His Legacy". WWD . Retrieved 13 December 2013 . ^ "WEDDINGS; Abigail Koppel, Leslie Wexner". The New York Times. January 24, 1993. ^ "Paid Notice: Deaths KOPPEL, YEHUDA". The New York Times. September 27, 2006. ^ Wilhelm, Jim (February 14, 2018). "Growth in elite equestrian competitions ends New Albany Classic after 20 years". Columbus Dispatch . Retrieved March 9, 2018 . ^ Adam Luck and Robert Mendick (24 October 2015). "Billionaire tycoon behind Victoria's Secret 'keeps his multi-million Cotswolds estate away from prying eyes ' ". The Telegraph . Retrieved 12 November 2015 . ^ "Francois Catroux Written by David Netto, Foreword by Diane von Furstenberg - Rizzoli New York - Rizzoli New York". www.rizzoliusa.com . Retrieved 2016-12-09 . ^ "World's 100 Largest Yachts 2008 #14: Limitless". www.powerandmotoryacht.com . Retrieved 2016-12-09 . ^ Landon Thomas Jr. (2002-10-28). "Jeffrey Epstein: International Money Man of Mystery". New York Magazine. ^ "Why Sex Offender Jeffrey Epstein Is Not A Billionaire". Forbes.com . Retrieved 10 July 2019 . ^ "Bush Visit May Boost Olmert - The New York Sun". www.nysun.com . Retrieved 27 December 2017 . ^ "Statement by the Press Secretary". georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov . Retrieved 27 December 2017 . ^ "SPHINX Senior Honorary - Ohio State". sphinx.org.ohio-state.edu. Archived from the original on 2014-10-24 . Retrieved 2017-03-15 . ^ Dispatch, Encarnacion Pyle, The Columbus. "Ohio State adds Wexner's name to medical center". The Columbus Dispatch . Retrieved 2017-03-15 . ^ Hallett, Joe (19 June 2012). "Wexner to host fundraiser for Romney". Columbus Dispatch. Archived from the original on 1 December 2013 . Retrieved 1 December 2013 . ^ Silva, Mark (29 June 2012). "Romney's Victoria's Secret: It's Out". Bloomberg . Retrieved 1 December 2013 . ^ Six-Month Total for Pro-Jeb Bush PAC: $103,167,845.83 Bloomberg. July 31, 2015 ^ Goldsmith, Suzanne. "Les Wexner renounces Republican Party affiliation after Obama stops in Columbus". The Columbus Dispatch . Retrieved 15 September 2018 . ^ Porter, Tom, Republican billionaire, wealthiest donor in Ohio, quits 'nonsense' party of Trump, praises Obama, Newsweek, September 15, 2018 External links [ edit ] The Wexner Foundation
US v Jeffrey Epstein - Indictment Unsealed
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 17:29
Uploaded by The Conservative TreehouseGeoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, William F. Sweeney Jr., the Assistant Director in Charge of the New York Field Office of the Federal Bur'...
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Christine Pelosi on Twitter: "This Epstein case is horrific and the young women deserve justice. It is quite likely that some of our faves are implicated but we must follow the facts and let the chips fall where they may - whether on Republicans or Democr
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 22:01
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Alexander Acosta - Wikipedia
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 01:38
Alexander Acosta
27th United States Secretary of Labor Assumed office April 28, 2017PresidentDonald TrumpDeputyPatrick Pizzella Preceded by Tom PerezDean of the Florida International University College of Law In office July 1, 2009 '' April 28, 2017 Preceded by Leonard Strickman Succeeded by Antony PageUnited States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida In office June 11, 2005 '' June 5, 2009PresidentGeorge W. BushBarack Obama Preceded by Marcos Jim(C)nez Succeeded by Wifredo A. FerrerUnited States Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division In office August 22, 2003 '' June 11, 2005PresidentGeorge W. Bush Preceded by Bradley Schlozman (acting) Succeeded by Wan J. KimMember of the National Labor Relations Board In office December 17, 2002 '' August 21, 2003PresidentGeorge W. Bush Preceded by William Cowen Succeeded by Ronald MeisburgPersonal detailsBornRene Alexander Acosta
( 1969-01-16 ) January 16, 1969 (age 50) Miami, Florida, U.S.Political partyRepublicanSpouse(s)Jan WilliamsEducationHarvard University (BA, JD)Website Government website Rene Alexander Acosta (born January 16, 1969)[1] is an American attorney, academic and politician who serves as the 27th United States Secretary of Labor.[2][3] President Donald Trump nominated Acosta to be Labor Secretary on February 16, 2017 , and he was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on April 27, 2017 . Acosta is the first, and the only Hispanic person, to serve in President Trump's Cabinet.[4][5][6][7]
A member of the Republican Party, he was appointed by President George W. Bush to the National Labor Relations Board and later served as Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights and U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida. He is the former dean of Florida International University College of Law.
In 2007''2008, as U.S. Attorney, Acosta approved a plea deal that required Jeffrey Epstein to plead guilty to state charges of prostitution, register as a sex offender and pay restitution to victims as part of a federal non-prosecution agreement.[8] The plea deal has been the subject of criticism by the Miami Herald and others.
Background [ edit ] Acosta is the only son of Cuban refugees.[9][10] He is a native of Miami, Florida, where he attended the Gulliver Schools. Acosta received an Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from Harvard College in 1990 and received a Juris Doctor degree cum laude from Harvard Law School 1994.[11] He is the first member of his family to graduate from college.[10]
Following law school, Acosta served as a law clerk to Samuel Alito, then a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, from 1994 to 1995.[12] Acosta then worked at the Washington, D.C., office of the law firm Kirkland & Ellis, where he specialized in employment and labor issues.[13] While in Washington, Acosta taught classes on employment law, disability-based discrimination law, and civil rights law at the George Mason University School of Law.[14]
On December 31, 2013, Acosta became new chairman of U.S. Century Bank,[15] the largest domestically owned Hispanic community bank in Florida and one of the 15 largest Hispanic community banks in the nation. During his tenure as chairman, U.S. Century Bank had its first year-end profit since the start of the Great Recession.[9] Acosta was a member of the Board of Trustees of Gulliver Schools, where he served a past term as board chairman.[16]
Bush Administration [ edit ] Acosta as Assistant Attorney General
Acosta served in four presidentially appointed, U.S. Senate-confirmed positions in the George W. Bush Administration. From December 2001 to December 2002, he served as Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.[17] From December 2002 to August 2003, he was a member of the National Labor Relations Board for which he participated in or authored more than 125 opinions.[18]
Then, he became Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division on August 22, 2003,[19] where he was known for increasing federal prosecutions against human trafficking.[20] Acosta authorized federal intervention in an Oklahoma religious liberties case to help assure the right to wear hijab in public school,[21] and worked with Mississippi authorities to reopen the investigation of the 1955 death of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old black youth whose abduction and killing helped spark the civil rights movement.[22][23] He was the first Hispanic to serve as Assistant Attorney General.[24]
While leading the Civil Rights division, Acosta allowed his predecessor, Bradley Schlozman, to continue to make decisions on hiring.[25] A report by the Inspector General and the Office of Professional Responsibility later found that Schlozman illegally gave preferential treatment to conservatives and made false statements to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Those findings were relayed to the office of the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia,[17] but Schlozman was not prosecuted.[25] While it put the primary responsibility on Schlozman, the report also concluded that Acosta "did not sufficiently supervise Schlozman" and that "in light of indications [he and Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Sheldon Bradshaw] had about Schlozman's conduct and judgment, they failed to ensure that Schlozman's hiring and personnel decisions were based on proper considerations."[17][25]
U.S. Attorney for Southern District of Florida [ edit ] Acosta during his tenure as U.S. Attorney
In 2005, Acosta was appointed as the U.S. Attorney for Southern District of Florida, where his office successfully prosecuted the lobbyist Jack Abramoff, the terrorism suspect Jos(C) Padilla, the founders of the Cali Cartel, and Charles McArther Emmanuel, the son of Liberia's former leader.[17][26]
The District also targeted white collar crime, prosecuting several bank-related cases, including one against Swiss bank UBS. The case resulted in UBS paying $780 million in fines, and for the first time in history, the bank provided the United States with the names of individuals who were using secret Swiss bank accounts to avoid U.S. federal income taxes.[27]
Other notable cases during his tenure include the corruption prosecution of Palm Beach County Commission Chairman Tony Masilotti, Palm Beach County Commissioner Warren Newell, Palm Beach County Commissioner Mary McCarty,[28] and Broward Sheriff Ken Jenne; the conviction of Cali Cartel founders Miguel and Gilberto Rodr­guez Orejuela, for the importation of 200,000 kilos of cocaine, which resulted in a $2.1 billion forfeiture; and the white-collar crime prosecutions of executives connected to Hamilton Bank.[29]
Acosta also emphasized health care fraud prosecutions. Under Acosta's leadership the District prosecuted more than 700 individuals, responsible for a total of more than $2 billion in Medicare fraud.[30]
Prosecution of Jeffrey Epstein [ edit ] In 2007-2008, while serving as the U.S. Attorney for Southern Florida, Acosta approved an arrangement that required Jeffrey Epstein to plead guilty to two state prostitution charges, serve jail time, register as a sex offender, and pay restitution to three dozen victims identified by the FBI as part of a federal non-prosecution agreement.[31] Epstein, a wealthy hedge fund manager with influential connections (including Bill Clinton, Donald Trump, and Prince Andrew, among others), was believed to have recruited minor girls for lewd massages and other paid sexual activities at his Florida mansion.[32][8] Under the agreement, Epstein, along with four co-conspirators and any unnamed ''potential co-conspirators,'' did not face federal criminal charges.[31]
Acosta has publicly stated that the agreement was determined by prosecutors to be the best available solution -- the prosecution team believed conviction by trial in federal court was highly unlikely, Florida state authorities had already passed on indicting Epstein for the same activities, and so a deal was negotiated that was designed to put an end to Epstein's sexual activities with minors by requiring him to turn himself in to the state of Florida, serve jail time, and publicly register as a sex offender; the deal also required Epstein to pay restitution to identified victims.[33] Defenders of the approach point out that if the federal prosecutors had taken no action -- which would have been typical in a case with inadequate evidence for a federal trial -- the abuse may have continued.
The non-prosecution agreement and Epstein's subsequent lenient treatment while incarcerated have been the subject of criticism, with one reporter calling the agreement ''the deal of a lifetime.''[32] In a 2011 public letter about the case, Acosta expressed dissatisfaction with the terms of Epstein's incarceration by Florida, stating: ''Epstein appears to have received highly unusual treatment while in jail.'' [34][35]
Subsequent to the federal non-prosecution agreement of 2007-2008, claims were made in news reports, books,[36][37] and civil lawsuits that Epstein's activities prior to his 2008 conviction may have been significantly more extensive than those known at the time of the agreement '' perhaps affecting hundreds of minors, said to have been recruited from the U.S. and overseas to attend sex parties and perform sexual favors for Epstein and his guests at Epstein's homes in Florida, New York, New Mexico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and aboard his private jet. In a March 2019 letter to the New York Times, several of Epstein's lawyers (including Ken Starr) denied these additional allegations, stating: ''The number of young women involved in the investigation has been vastly exaggerated, there was no 'international sex-trafficking operation' and there was never evidence that Mr. Epstein 'hosted sex parties' at his home.''[38] None of the civil lawsuits related to these additional claims have gone to trial.
In late 2018, as rumors that Acosta was being considered as a possible successor to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the Miami Herald published a report critical of Acosta's role in the Epstein case. Following the Miami Herald article and related news coverage,[32][39]members of Congress submitted a formal request to the U.S. Department of Justice for review of Acosta's role in the Epstein deal,[40] and several editorials called for Acosta's resignation or termination from his then-current position as U.S. Labor Secretary.[41][42] When the controversy resurfaced, Acosta said he welcomed the opportunity to participate in any inquiry, and the U.S. Department of Justice notified Congress in early 2019 that it had opened an investigation into the federal handling of the Epstein case.
David Markus, a Florida defense attorney familiar with Acosta's work as U.S. Attorney for Southern District of Florida supported Acosta, stating: ''[T]here are many '-- including the New York Times, Miami Herald, and others '-- who are calling for Congress to investigate Acosta and force him out, equating Acosta's approval of the deal to Epstein's actions. Although it is fair to have an honest disagreement about the Epstein plea agreement, the attacks on Acosta are not justified. ... At the time this case was being investigated, there were serious questions about whether Epstein's crimes had the required federal nexus. These were traditional state court crimes with local victims, which the federal government decided should be prosecuted by the state system. ... In addition, there were legitimate concerns about how a trial would have turned out. These trials are difficult. ... Here, prosecutors have said that many of the victims either refused to testify or were going to say things that helped Epstein.''[43]
Former federal prosecutor, Jeffrey Sloman, echoed this view, writing: ''Our priorities were to make sure Epstein could not hurt anyone else and to compensate Epstein's victims without retraumatizing them. Our team worked diligently to build a federal case against Epstein. Throughout the investigation, we took care to be respectful of the pain Epstein's victims had endured. As we continued, however, it became clear that most of Epstein's victims were terrified to cooperate against him. Some hired lawyers to avoid appearing before a grand jury. One of the key witnesses moved to Australia and refused to return calls from us. We also researched and discussed significant legal impediments to prosecuting [in federal court] what was, at heart, a local sex abuse case. Given the obstacles we faced in fashioning a robust federal prosecution, we decided to negotiate a resolution. ... You can disagree with the result we reached, but our whole team '-- from Alex [Acosta] on down the chain of command '-- always acted with integrity and in good faith.'' [44]
In December 2018, a Labor Department spokesperson replied to questions about renewed interest in the Epstein case as follows: "For more than a decade, this prosecution has been reviewed in great detail by newspaper articles, television reports, books, and Congressional testimony, and has been defended by the Department of Justice in litigation across three administrations and several attorneys general. If the Department of Justice's Office of the Inspector General chooses to review this matter, Secretary Acosta welcomes the opportunity to participate."[45]
In February 2019, the Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility notified Senator Ben Sasse that it had opened an investigation into Epstein's prosecution.[46][47]
On February 21, 2019, a ruling in federal court on a related matter returned Acosta's role in the Epstein case to the headlines.[48][49][50][51] A key criticism of the Epstein case was that the federal deal with Epstein had been kept secret until after it was finalized, a practice that had been common prior to passage of the Crime Victims' Rights Act of 2004 (CVRA), which requires notifying victims of the progress of federal criminal cases. The CVRA was new and relatively untested at the time of the Epstein non-prosecution agreement. In 2008, two of Epstein's victims filed a lawsuit in federal court aiming to vacate the federal non-prosecution agreement on the grounds that it violated the CVRA.[32] For more than a decade, the U.S. Attorney's office denied that it acted in violation of victims' rights laws and argued that the CVRA did not apply in the Epstein case.[52] The government's contention that the CVRA did not apply was based on questions of timing (whether or not CVRA applied prior to filing of federal charges) and jurisdiction (whether the case should be considered a federal case or a state case under the CVRA). The court rejected those arguments in the February 21, 2019, ruling, finding that the CVRA did apply and that victims should have been notified of the Epstein non-prosecution agreement in advance of its signing, to afford them the opportunity to influence its terms. At the conclusion of his ruling, the federal judge in the case noted that he was ''not ruling that the decision not to prosecute was improper,'' but was ''simply ruling that, under the facts of this case, there was a violation of the victims rights [for reasonable, accurate, and timely notice] under the CVRA.''[53]
Because the CVRA does not specify penalties for failure to meet victims notification requirements, the judge offered both parties opportunities to suggest remedies -- Epstein's victims asked for rescission of the federal non-prosecution agreement with Epstein, while the government argued that restitution paid to victims would be jeopardized if the deal were reversed and suggested other approaches. [54]
On July 6, 2019, Epstein was arrested by the FBI-NYPD Crimes Against Children Task Force on sex trafficking charges stemming from activities alleged to have occurred in 2002-2005. [55] Initial reports were unclear as to whether the the 2007-2008 federal non-prosecution agreement with Epstein had been rescinded prior to the arrest.
Dean of the Florida International University College of Law [ edit ] On July 1, 2009, Acosta became the second dean of Florida International University College of Law.[56] He spearheaded the effort to establish the Master of Studies in Law in banking compliance, Bank Secrecy Act and anti-money-laundering at FIU Law.[24]
Secretary of Labor [ edit ] This section
needs expansion.
You can help by adding to it. ( March 2018 )Nomination and confirmation [ edit ] Acosta being sworn in as the Secretary of Labor by Vice President
Mike Pence, on April 28, 2017
President Donald Trump announced in a press conference on February 16, 2017, that he would nominate Acosta to fill the position of United States Secretary of Labor after the nomination of Andrew Puzder was withdrawn.[57][58][59][60][61] Acosta was recommended by White House Counsel Don McGahn.[62] Acosta is the first, and '' as of May 2019 '' the only Hispanic person to serve in Trump's cabinet.[4][63][6][7]Jovita Carranza was nominated to Trump's cabinet on April 4, 2019, but not yet confirmed, to serve as the Administrator of the Small Business Administration.[64]
The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions held confirmation hearings on March 22, 2017, and Acosta'²s nomination was reported out of the committee on March 30, 2017.[65]
On April 27, 2017, Acosta was confirmed as Secretary of Labor by the U.S. Senate in a 60''38 vote. He received the support of 8 Democratic Senators and all Republican Senators except Senator Pat Toomey, who did not participate in the vote.[66] On April 28, 2017, Acosta was sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence.[67]
Tenure [ edit ] Apprenticeship [ edit ] During Acosta'²s confirmation hearing, he discussed the need and his support of apprenticeship as a workforce development tool to close the skills gap.[39] On June 15, 2017, President Trump signed Executive Order 13801, ''Presidential Executive Order Expanding Apprenticeships in America,'' establishing the Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion with Acosta serving as the chair.[68][69] The Task Force held five public meetings and issued their final report to President Trump on May 10, 2018.[70][69]
Following the Task Force final report, the U.S. Department of Labor announced they following initiatives to expand and promote apprenticeship opportunities:
Create a new industry-recognized apprenticeship program system to complement the registered apprenticeship system.[71]Launch Apprenticeship.gov as a ''one-stop source for all things apprenticeship.''[72][73]Acosta announced that the Trump Administration has a goal of one million new apprentices.[74]
Recognition [ edit ] Acosta has twice been named one of the nation's 50 most influential Hispanics by Hispanic Business Magazine. He serves or served on the Florida Innocence Commission,[75] on the Florida Supreme Court's Commission on Professionalism,[76] Florida Supreme Court's Access to Justice Commission,[24] and on the Commission for Hispanic Rights and Responsibilities.[77] In 2008, Acosta was nameds one of the 100 most influential people in business ethics by the Ethisphere Institute.[78]
References [ edit ] ^ Weaver, Jay; Yanez, Luisa (May 28, 2009). "U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta to lead FIU's law school". The Miami Herald. ^ "U.S. Attorney R. Alexander Acosta to head FIU law school". Miami Herald. May 27, 2009 . Retrieved August 18, 2011 . ^ Ayala, Christine (February 25, 2019). "Trump should fire Labor Secretary Acosta for cowardice in child sex abuse case". TheHill . Retrieved February 27, 2019 . ^ a b "Trump to name Alexander Acosta as labor secretary nominee" . Retrieved February 16, 2017 . ^ CNN, John King, Manu Raju and Dan Merica. "Trump to announce Alexander Acosta as labor secretary pick" . Retrieved February 16, 2017 . ^ a b "Trump to name Alexander Acosta as new Labor secretary nominee" . Retrieved February 16, 2017 . ^ a b News, A. B. C. (March 3, 2017). "A look at Trump's Cabinet picks". ABC News . Retrieved August 25, 2017 . ^ a b "Sex abuser Jeffrey Epstein was surrounded by powerful people. Here's a sampling" . Retrieved February 23, 2019 . ^ a b "Trump's labor pick is FIU law dean and a former Miami U.S. attorney" . Retrieved August 9, 2018 . ^ a b "Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta". DOL.gov. United States Department of Labor . Retrieved May 23, 2019 . ^ "Alexander Acosta '94 nominated to be labor secretary". Harvard Law Today. February 16, 2017 . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ Adams, T. Becket (February 16, 2017). "6 things to know about Alexander Acosta, Trump's new pick for labor secretary". Washington Examiner . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ King, John; Raju, Manu; Merica, Dan (February 16, 2017). "Trump names first Hispanic Cabinet pick". CNN . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ Smith, Nancy (February 16, 2017). "FIU Law School Dean, Alexander Acosta, Trump's Secretary of Labor Pick". Sunshine State News . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ "Former U.S. Attorney becomes chairman of U.S. Century Bank". By Brian Bandell of South Florida Business Journal. December 12, 2013 . Retrieved February 24, 2014 . ^ "Our Leadership". Gulliver School . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ a b c d Office of the Inspector General; Office of Professional Responsibility (January 13, 2009). An Investigation of Allegations of Politicized Hiring and Other Improper Personnel Actions in the Civil Rights Division (PDF) (Report) . Retrieved May 12, 2017 . ^ Morrow, Brendan. "R. Alexander Acosta: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know". ^ Vitali, Ali; Alexander, Peter (February 16, 2017). "Trump Announces Alexander Acosta as New Labor Secretary Pick". NBC News . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ "A passion of Trump's new Labor secretary pick: Trafficking 'is evil. It is hideous. ' ". miamiherald . Retrieved January 30, 2019 . ^ "Statement of R. Alexander Acosta before the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights Hearing Entitled: "Protecting the Civil Rights of Muslim Americans", March 29. 2011" (PDF) . Retrieved June 28, 2019 . ^ Newman, Maria (May 10, 2004). "U.S. to Reopen Investigation of Emmett Till's Murder in 1955". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved January 30, 2019 . ^ "#311: 05-10-04 JUSTICE DEPARTMENT TO INVESTIGATE 1955 EMMETT TILL MURDER". www.justice.gov . Retrieved January 30, 2019 . ^ a b c "R. Alexander Acosta". Archive.org. Florida International University College of Law. February 16, 2017 . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ a b c Serwer, Adam. "The Scandal That May Haunt the New Nominee for Labor Secretary". The Atlantic . Retrieved May 12, 2017 . ^ Rappeport, Alan (February 16, 2017). "R. Alexander Acosta, Law School Dean, Is Trump's New Pick for Labor". New York Times . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ Graham, David (February 16, 2017). "Trump's New Pick for Secretary of Labor: Alexander Acosta". The Atlantic . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ "Mary McCarty's Fall From Grace". FloridaTrend. FloridaTrend . Retrieved January 3, 2018 . ^ Wilkie, Dana (February 16, 2017). "Alexander Acosta Is Trump's New Pick for Labor Secretary". Society for Human Resource Management . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ "The Issue: Health Care Fraud Costly". Sun Sentinel. May 24, 2009 . Retrieved February 21, 2017 . ^ a b " " Non Prosecution Agreement In Re Investigation of Jeffrey Epstein," September 24, 2007". Scribd . Retrieved December 29, 2018 . ^ a b c d "How a future Trump Cabinet member gave a serial sex abuser the deal of a lifetime". Miami Herald. November 28, 2018 . Retrieved November 28, 2018 . ^ Aitken, Conchita Sarnoff|Lee (March 25, 2011). "Jeffrey Epstein: How the Hedge Fund Mogul Pedophile Got Off Easy" . Retrieved July 9, 2019 . ^ Aitken, Conchita Sarnoff|Lee (March 25, 2011). "Jeffrey Epstein: How the Hedge Fund Mogul Pedophile Got Off Easy" . Retrieved July 9, 2019 . ^ "Jeffrey Epstein attorney Roy Black denies allegations in letter by ex-U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta". Palm Beach Daily News. Palm Beach Daily News. ^ Sarnoff, Conchita (2016). TrafficKing. Zumbaba.com. ISBN 978-168273-599-2. ^ Patterson, James (2016). Filthy Rich: Filthy Rich: The Billionaire's Sex Scandal--The Shocking True Story of Jeffrey Epstein. ^ "Opinion | Jeffrey Epstein's Attorneys: A Fair Plea Deal". The New York Times. March 4, 2019. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved March 28, 2019 . ^ a b "Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. Hearings held. Hearings printed: S.Hrg. 115-268" (PDF) . Congress.gov. United States Congress. March 22, 2017 . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ Birnbaum, Emily (December 4, 2018). "Lawmakers call for investigation into Labor Secretary Acosta for sex offender plea deal". TheHill . Retrieved December 29, 2018 . ^ Goldberg, Michelle (December 3, 2018). "Opinion | Why Does Alex Acosta Still Have a Job?". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved December 29, 2018 . ^ "Alex Acosta, you made a mockery of Florida's sex offender laws. It's time to resign" . Retrieved December 29, 2018 . ^ "Alexander Acosta is being unfairly criticized for his handling of Epstein's plea deal" . Retrieved December 29, 2018 . ^ "Alex Acosta acted with professionalism and integrity in handling the Jeffrey Epstein case" . Retrieved February 24, 2019 . ^ North, Anna (December 11, 2018). "Trump's labor secretary once helped a sex offender stay out of prison. The Senate wants answers". Vox . Retrieved December 13, 2018 . ^ "Justice Department opens probe into Jeffrey Epstein's plea deal". NBC News. ^ Kullgren, Ian. "DOJ opens investigation into Alexander Acosta plea deal". Politico . Retrieved February 9, 2019 . ^ Mazzei, Patricia (February 21, 2019). "Prosecutors Broke Law in Agreement Not to Prosecute Jeffrey Epstein, Judge Rules". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved February 22, 2019 . ^ Gershman, Jacob (February 21, 2019). "Federal Prosecutors Broke the Law in Jeffrey Epstein Case, Judge Rules". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660 . Retrieved February 23, 2019 . ^ "Federal prosecutors broke law in Jeffrey Epstein case, judge rules" . Retrieved February 23, 2019 . ^ " " Judge: Prosecutors' deal with Jeffrey Epstein in molestation case violated law, misled victims" Washington Post" . Retrieved June 28, 2019 . ^ Musgrave, Jane. "BREAKING: Feds explain sweet deal for billionaire sex offender Epstein". Palm Beach Daily News . Retrieved February 13, 2019 . ^ Bureau, DocumentCloud Admin (McClatchy Washington. "Read the judge's ruling". www.documentcloud.org . Retrieved February 24, 2019 . ^ Briquelet, Kate (June 25, 2019). "Feds Want to Uphold Billionaire Pedophile Jeffrey Epstein's Shady Plea Deal" . Retrieved July 9, 2019 . ^ Siegel, Pervaiz Shallwani|Kate Briquelet|Harry (July 6, 2019). "Jeffrey Epstein Arrested for Sex Trafficking of Minors" . Retrieved July 7, 2019 . ^ "FIU Law Dean Acosta nominated for U.S. labor secretary post" . Retrieved August 9, 2018 . ^ "President Donald J. Trump Nominates R. Alexander Acosta to be Secretary of Labor" . Retrieved August 9, 2018 . ^ "Trump announced Alexander Acosta as new Labor Secretary pick on Thursday" . Retrieved August 9, 2018 . ^ Baker, Peter (February 16, 2017). "R. Alexander Acosta, Law School Dean, Is Trump's New Pick for Labor". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved February 16, 2017 . ^ Rucker, Philip. "In an erratic performance, President Trump shows his supporters who's boss". Washington Post . Retrieved August 9, 2018 . ^ " ' I Inherited a Mess,' Trump Says, Defending His Performance" . Retrieved August 9, 2018 . ^ Cook, Nancy (May 16, 2017). "Trump's top lawyer faces a giant cleanup job". Politico. ^ CNN, John King, Manu Raju and Dan Merica. "Trump to announce Alexander Acosta as labor secretary pick" . Retrieved February 16, 2017 . ^ Choi, Matthew (April 4, 2019). "Trump names Jovita Carranza, U.S. treasurer, to head SBA". Politico . Retrieved April 4, 2019 . ^ "PN88 '-- R. Alexander Acosta '-- Department of Labor". Congress.gov. United States Congress . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ United States Senate. "On the Nomination (Confirmation R. Alexander Acosta, of Florida, to be Secretary of Labor)". ^ "R. Alexander Acosta sworn in as the 27th Secretary of the US Department of Labor". DOL.gov. United States Department of Labor. April 28, 2017 . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ "Presidential Executive Order Expanding Apprenticeships in America". WhiteHouse.gov. White House. June 15, 2017 . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ a b "Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion Final Report to the President of the United States" (PDF) . DOL.gov. United States Department of Labor. May 10, 2018 . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ "Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion". DOL.gov. United States Department of Labor . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ "Training and Employment Notice No. 03-18: Creating Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Programs to Expand Opportunity in America". DOLETA.gov. United States Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration. July 27, 2018 . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ "U.S. Department of Labor Announces Apprenticeship.gov". DOL.gov. United States Department of Labor. August 30, 2018 . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ "Homepage". Apprenticeship.gov. United States Department of Labor . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ Barton, Mary Ann. "Trump administration to push for 'a million apprenticeships ' ". NACo.org. National Association of Counties . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . ^ "Publications". August 5, 2014 . Retrieved August 9, 2018 . ^ "Who is Labor secretary pick Alexander Acosta?". February 16, 2017 . Retrieved August 9, 2018 . ^ "Commission on Hispanic Legal Rights & Responsibilities". www.americanbar.org . Retrieved August 9, 2018 . ^ "100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics 2008". Archive.org. Ethisphere Institute. December 31, 2008 . Retrieved May 22, 2019 . External links [ edit ] Official biography from the U.S. Department of LaborAssistant Attorney General R. Alexander AcostaSecretary Acosta on TwitterAppearances on C-SPAN
Jeffrey Epstein: How the Hedge Fund Mogul Pedophile Got Off Easy
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 01:38
Documents obtained by The Daily Beast reveal how pedophile hedge fund mogul Jeffrey Epstein escaped a hefty jail sentence despite overwhelming evidence of sex crimes with dozens of young girls. Conchita Sarnoff and Lee Aitken on how the fear and intimidation experienced by victims during pre-trial proceedings, combined with a ferocious, protracted campaign to undermine the prosecution, culminated in a set of charges that became a virtual slap on the wrist.
It is proving difficult for hedge fund manager and registered sex offender Jeffrey Epstein to avoid the glare of media scrutiny '' British tabloids most recently cried foul over the shabby royal comportment of Prince Andrew in agreeing to be the guest of an acknowledged pedophile. But the larger mystery surrounding Epstein, who completed a 13-month sentence for soliciting prostitution from a minor in 2010, has remained unsolved: How did the hedge fund mogul manage to finesse the kinds of sex-crime allegations typically associated with a hefty prison sentence?
For the first time, the U.S. attorney who oversaw the Epstein prosecution in Florida's Southern District is commenting publicly on the case, in a letter released exclusively to The Daily Beast. This letter, along with other correspondence unearthed in our reporting, sheds new light on the no-holds-barred battle waged by Epstein's lawyers to evade the full exercise of prosecutorial power.
Some of the most shocking allegations against Epstein surfaced only after the conclusion of an FBI probe, in civil suits brought by his victims: for example, the claim that three 12-year-old French girls were delivered to him as a birthday present. But the feds did identify roughly 40 young women, most of them underage at the time, who described being lured to Epstein's Palm Beach home on the pretense of giving a ''massage'' for money, then pressured into various sex acts, as well as the ''Balkan sex slave'' Epstein allegedly boasted of purchasing from her family when she was just 14. More recently, a big cash payment from Mail on Sunday coaxed one of Epstein's main accusers out of anonymity to describe what she claims were her years as a teenage sex toy. This victim, Virginia Roberts, produced a photo of herself with Prince Andrew in 2001 and reported that Epstein paid her $15,000 to meet the prince. Then 17 years old, she claims that she was abused by Epstein and ''loaned'' to his friends from the age of 15.
Sex crimes of the kind Roberts alleges took place typically carry a term of 10 to 20 years in federal prison. Yet when all was said and done, Epstein served his scant year-plus-one-month in a private wing of the Palm Beach jail and was granted a 16-hour-per-day free pass to leave the premises for work. A Daily Beast examination into the inner workings of the Epstein defense strategy reveals how the fear and intimidation experienced by victims during pre-trial proceedings, combined with a ferocious, protracted campaign to undermine the prosecution '' summed up as ''the best defense is an all-star offense'' '' culminated in a set of charges that became a virtual slap on the wrist for the globe-trotting financier. Fear and intimidation experienced by victims during pre-trial proceedings, combined with a ferocious, protracted campaign to undermine the prosecution, culminated in a set of charges that became a virtual slap on the wrist.
''Over the past weeks, I have read much regarding Mr. Jeffrey Epstein,'' are words opening an extraordinary letter written by R. Alexander Acosta, who served as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida during Epstein's criminal investigation. Mr. Acosta goes on to detail how, in 2005, a young girl first brought sex-crime allegations to the Palm Beach Police Department, which sought felony charges against Epstein. Subsequently, however, the State Attorney agreed to charge him ''only with one count of aggravated assault with no intent to commit a felony,'' Acosta writes. He notes that such a charge would have resulted in no jail time, no registration as a sexual offender, and no responsibility for restitution to Epstein's underage victims.
Frustrated by the State Attorney's decision, the police referred the case to the FBI, which handed it to the U.S. Attorney General's office. After reviewing the charges, federal prosecutors ''agreed that the state charge was insufficient,'' Acosta writes. In a script that could have been lifted from Law and Order, his team gave Epstein two choices: ''plead to more serious state felony charges'...or else prepare for a federal felony trial.''
The next passage is where things really get interesting: ''What followed was a year-long assault on the prosecution and the prosecutors.'' Epstein had assembled a world-class legal team, including Alan Dershowitz, Kenneth Starr, and Roy Black (best known for having defended William Kennedy Smith against rape charges in Palm Beach.) ''One member of the defense team warned me that the office's excess zeal in forcing a good man to serve time in jail might be the subject of a book if we continued,'' Acosta writes. In his view, excessive zeal more aptly described the actions in Epstein's camp: ''Defense counsel investigated individual prosecutors and their families,'' seeking to unearth personal issues that might lead to disqualification of members of Acosta's team. The defense also ''often failed to negotiate in good faith. They would obtain concessions as part of a negotiation and agree to proceed, only to change their minds, and appeal the office's position to Washington.''
Undeterred, Acosta stuck to his position that Epstein must agree to the three criteria he had laid out: jail time, registration as a sex offender, and restitution to victims.
Acosta's account is supported by a second document obtained by The Daily Beast '' a five-page letter written by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ann Marie Villafana to another of Epstein's lawyers, Jay Lefkowitz, during the period when both sides were hammering out the eventual plea agreement. ''The indictment was postponed for more than five months to allow you and Mr. Epstein's other attorneys to make presentations to the office to convince the office not to prosecute,'' Villafana writes, conjuring the degree of pushback apparently central to the team's strategy. ''Those presentations were unsuccessful.'' Villafana also mentions her efforts to insure that Epstein would serve time in a federal ''prison camp'' and not a state prison, which would be a far rougher environment, particularly for a child molester.
Villafana marshals these facts in the process of strenuously disputing apparent charges of misconduct by the defense: ''I continued to work with you in a professional manner even after I learned that you had been proceeding in bad faith for several weeks '' thinking that '... you would 'fool' our office into letting Mr. Epstein plead to a non-registerable offense.''
At another point in her letter, Villafana refers to an apparent allegation of self-dealing in the selection of an outside attorney who would represent the 40-odd victims identified in the FBI probe. In a somewhat unusual arrangement, Epstein agreed not to contest his liability in any civil suits brought by these victims '' and in fact to pay for lawyers to represent them. In her letter, Villafana denies any personal interest in the choice of attorney and goes on to say, ''your attacks on me and on the victims establish why I wanted to find someone whom I could trust with safeguarding the victims' best interests in the face of intense pressure from an unlimited number of highly skilled and well paid attorneys.''
Responding to a request for comment on Acosta's account of events, Roy Black wrote The Daily Beast on Thursday that, ''I can't reply to a letter I haven't received'...I can't give a reasoned response without examining the files and being able to refresh my recollection of events that occurred years ago.'' Black went on, ''I do not believe any of the things you mention occurred except for the fact we did exercise our right to appeal to the Department of Justice to determine if a federal crime had been committed.'' (Other Epstein attorneys contacted by The Daily Beast did not respond. The U.S Attorney's office for the Southern District of Florida had no comment.)
Why did Acosta decide to voice his opinions now? In part, he clearly is reacting to ongoing criticism that Epstein's puny punishment did not fit his crimes. ''Some may feel that the prosecution should have been tougher,'' Acosta writes. ''Evidence that has come to light since 2007 may encourage that view. Many victims have since spoken out'...physical evidence has since been discovered.''
Acosta may also have chosen to come forward now because, on Monday, attorneys for a number of those victims filed suit under the Victims Crimes Rights Act to challenge the ''non-prosecution agreement'' that ultimately resulted from all the wrangling, claiming that they were not consulted. The U.S. Attorney's office, now led by Wifredo A. Ferrer, has indicated it will file a response to the suit on April 7.
In his letter, Acosta also takes issue with the way Epstein's sentence was carried out: ''Although the terms of confinement in a state prison are a matter appropriately left to the State of Florida'...without doubt, the treatment that he received while in state custody undermined the purpose of a jail sentence.'' Indeed, Epstein's brief confinement likely reinforced a perception that he had merely succumbed to a nuisance suit. Such a gross misapprehension would help account for the apparent ease with which Epstein has rejoined the ranks of a social elite. Katie Couric, Woody Allen, and George Stephanopoulos, among others, attended a dinner party he hosted for Prince Andrew in December, and New York authorities seem to be either unaware or unconcerned that his Upper East Side home is within 1,000 feet of an Episcopal pre-school, in violation of sex-offender laws.
Yet a source tells The Daily Beast that Epstein's legal troubles may not be over. It is possible that, as an outgrowth of the 2007 Florida investigation, federal investigators are now looking into allegations of money laundering and other financial misdeeds. Villafana notes at the end of her letter to Lefkowitz: ''You accuse me of broadening the scope of the investigation without any foundation for doing so by adding charges of money laundering and violations of a money transmitting business to the investigation. Again, I consulted with the Justice Department's Money Laundering Section about my analysis...the duty officer agreed with my analysis.''
Conchita Sarnoff has developed multimedia communication programs for Fortune 500 companies and has produced three current events debate television programs, The Americas Forum, From Beirut to Kabul, and a segment for The Oppenheimer Report. She is writing a book about child trafficking in America.
Lee Aitken is an editor and writer who has worked at Time Inc., the New Yorker, Cond(C) Nast Traveler, and the International Tribune, among others. She lives in Washington, D.C. with her daughter.
Jeffrey Epstein attorney Roy Black denies allegations in letter by ex-U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta - News - Palm Beach Daily News - Palm Beach, FL
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 01:45
Michele DarganTuesday Mar 29, 2011 at 12:01 AM Mar 29, 2011 at 11:23 PM
Attorney Roy Black is disputing claims that he, and other attorneys representing Jeffrey Epstein, pried into federal prosecutors' personal lives in attempting to disqualify them from investigating the billionaire sex offender.
Black also denies Epstein's attorneys "negotiated in bad faith," while attempting to reach an agreement with federal prosecutors.
In a written response Tuesday to the Palm Beach Daily News, Black disputes claims made against Epstein's defense team by former U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta. Those and other allegations by Acosta were contained in a three-page letter printed Friday in the online publication The Daily Beast.
Acosta was the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida at the time Epstein was being investigated on federal charges related to multiple sex crimes with minor girls. Black, the Miami attorney who successfully defended William Kennedy Smith against rape charges, was part of Epstein's legal dream team.
Epstein was never charged with a federal crime. He and his attorneys struck a deal with federal prosecutors, which was outlined in a non-prosecution agreement. According to the agreement, Epstein had to plead guilty to two state charges, register as a lifelong sex offender and serve 18 months in jail. If he successfully completed those terms and served one-year of probation, then Epstein would not be prosecuted on federal charges as they related to approximately 30 to 40 victims.
In a written response to the Daily News, Black said, "We did present argument after argument why a proposed federal prosecution against Mr. Epstein was unsupported by the evidence. We detailed the so-called evidence during many meetings with prosecutors and agents.
"We were quite candid in disclosing all the evidence we had gathered in our investigation and I believe we made a convincing case why charges were not appropriate. I still believe that today."
According to Acosta, now dean of the Florida International University College of Law, federal prosecutors and agents met with Black in the summer of 2007. The prosecutors presented Epstein a choice: plead guilty to state felony charges resulting in two years imprisonment, registration as a sex offender and restitution for the victims or prepare for a federal felony trial.
What followed, Acosta said, was that Epstein's defense team launched "a yearlong assault on the prosecution and the prosecutors.
"I use the word assault intentionally, as the defense in this case was more aggressive than any which I, or the prosecutors in my office, had previously encountered," Acosta said in his letter.
Among the "legal superstars" on Epstein's defense team: Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz, Kenneth Starr, Jay Lefkowitz and several others, including prosecutors who had formally worked in the U.S. Attorney's Office and in the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section of the Justice Department.
Acosta said that one member of the defense team warned him "the office's excess zeal in forcing a good man to serve time in jail might be the subject of a book if we continued to proceed with this matter."
Black said he's never heard anyone mention writing a book about the Epstein case. "Mr. Acosta claims we negotiated in bad faith by appealing to the Department of Justice in Washington," Black said. "Any person under investigation by a United States attorney, meaning any of the 94 such offices in the country, has the right to seek review by the Department of Justice and it is so provided for in their manual. Thus I cannot imagine invoking this right could be construed as bad faith.
"In our system of justice, people are given the right of appeal and there should be no implication of wrong doing by exercising it.
"Finally Mr. Acosta mentions we looked for personal peccadilloes of prosecutors," Black said. "I am not sure what he refers to but this never happened. We did point out misconduct and over-reaching by certain people involved in the investigation. Not only is there nothing wrong with this but it is a necessary part of the process. There will always be people who abuse the great power of the government and we can not stand by silently when it occurs."
The non-prosecution agreement was sealed in Epstein's state felony file until victims' attorneys successfully argued to make the document public in September 2009.
According to the agreement, Epstein could have received 10 or more years if convicted on federal charges. In addition, the agreement let co-conspirators Sarah Kellen, Adriana Ross, Lesley Groff and Nadia Marcinkova off the hook for any of those past crimes.
"Some feel the prosecution should have been tougher," Acosta said in his letter, adding that victims' statements and undefined "physical evidence" had been discovered since then. He states that had those factors been known in 2007, "the outcome may have been different. ...
"Our judgment in this case, based on the evidence known at the time, was that it was better to have a billionaire serve jail time, register as a sex offender and pay his victims restitution than risk a trial with a reduced likelihood of success."
Victims' attorneys Brad Edwards and Paul Cassell are seeking to get the non-prosecution agreement overturned, saying the U.S. Attorney's Office violated the Crime Victims' Rights Act by not notifying victims before striking the deal.
Epstein has confidentially settled more than two dozen lawsuits and claims from minor girls, all with similar allegations: They were recruited to perform sexually charged massages and/or various sex acts on Epstein, for which they were paid.
Epstein, 58, served 13 months of an 18-month state sentence in a vacant wing of the Palm Beach County Stockade. He was allowed out on work release six days a week up to 16 hours a day.
During his one-year of home confinement in his Palm Beach mansion, Epstein was allowed to travel out of state on his private plane to New York and to his private island in the Virgin Islands, according to probation records.
Regarding Epstein's incarceration and probation, Acosta said, "Epstein appears to have received highly unusual treatment while in jail. Although the terms of confinement in a state prison are a matter appropriately left to the State of Florida and not federal authorities, without doubt, the treatment that he received while in state custody undermined the purpose of a jail sentence," Acosta said.
Teri Barbera, spokeswoman for the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office, said the department did not have a comment. PBSO supervised Epstein while in jail.
It Sure Looks Like Jeffrey Epstein Was a Spy'--But Whose? | Observer
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 11:42
Billionaire Jeffrey Epstein in Cambridge, Massachusetts on September 8, 2004. Rick Friedman/Corbis via Getty Images
In terms of scandals, the sordid saga of Jeffrey Epstein has it all. Mysterious gaudy fortunes. Jet-setting debauchery. Lots of pretty girls'--including very young girls. Sex and more sex, not necessarily legal or consensual. Add a battalion of VIPs, including billionaires, A-list celebrities, royalty and no less than two American presidents.
The only thing missing was espionage'... and it's not missing anymore.
SEE ALSO: Victoria's Secret Founder Loses $53M Over Ties With Jeffrey Epstein
This week, the Epstein story took center stage for all the reasons listed above. The surprise arrest of the 66-year-old admitted pedophile on Saturday night at New Jersey's Teterboro airport, as he was headed home from Paris, reopened it all. The case had jumped in and out of the news since 2007, when Epstein admitted his affection for underage women to the Department of Justice, in exchange for lenient treatment.
The media has been agog since the weekend, as details of Epstein's shocking private life are emerging. Public horror has followed'--another alleged victim came forward just today, claiming Epstein raped her in 2002, when she was 15'--and more seems certain to come.
The Justice Department unsealed its new indictment against Epstein on Monday, which focuses on that 2002 to 2005 period, when Epstein allegedly ran a secret empire devoted to moving underage girls between his New York and Florida residences, in order to sexually exploit them. Epstein's life will never be the same.
But what was that life, really? That's a key question which nobody has been able to publicly answer. How Epstein maintained his fantastically extravagant lifestyle has long been a topic of speculation and mystery. He claimed to have made his vast fortune as a financial guru to the super-rich, but nearly all of his clients were unnamed. Moreover, in a business where overwork is standard, Epstein seemed to have unlimited free time to pursue his avocation of obtaining ''massages'' from young women.
A major hint was dropped this week by Vicky Ward, the intrepid investigative journalist who has tried to expose the ugly reality behind the Epstein facade longer than anyone. In a report for the Daily Beast, Ward shed light on the Justice Department's 2007 non-prosecution agreement with Epstein, that sweetest of sweet deals, since it got Epstein a laughably lenient sentence'--for crimes which any normal person would have gone away for decades after admitting to.
Alexander Acosta, the current U.S. Labor Secretary, is in the hot seat, since a dozen years ago he was the U.S. Attorney for South Florida who cut that deal with Epstein. Ward explained the background of that deal, which is now a noose for Acosta. Specifically, she elaborated that the Epstein issue came up when Acosta was appointed to the cabinet by President Donald Trump. Ward writes:
He'd cut the non-prosecution deal with one of Epstein's attorneys because he had ''been told'' to back off, that Epstein was above his pay grade. ''I was told Epstein 'belonged to intelligence' and to leave it alone,'' he told his interviewers in the Trump transition, who evidently thought that was a sufficient answer and went ahead and hired Acosta. (The Labor Department had no comment when asked about this.)
Wait, what?
So, Acosta, according to himself, backed off on prosecuting Epstein back in 2007, despite the possession of ample evidence proving his guilt, because he ''belonged to intelligence.'' Whose intelligence, exactly? is the first of many questions that arise here.
This claim was met with an appropriate degree of skepticism, and Acosta had a chance to explain what he meant in a press conference this afternoon. On camera, Acosta maintained that he did the best he could with that case, while admitting that it hardly looks like a fair punishment now.
The intelligence issue came up, and Acosta's response was bizarre. He punted on setting the record straight, instead proffering this strange word salad when asked about Ward's reporting:
So there has been reporting to that effect and let me say, there's been reporting to a lot of effects in this case, not just now but over the years and, again, I would hesitant to take this reporting as fact. This was a case that was brought by our office, it was brought based on the facts and I look at the reporting and others, I can't address it directly because of our guidelines, but I can tell you that a lot of reporting is going down rabbit holes.
To anyone acquainted with our nation's capital, that's a non-denial denial of an epic kind. Given the chance to refute Ward's report, specifically that the Epstein case involved intelligence matters, Acosta did nothing of the sort. Indeed, he functionally admitted that it's true.
What then can we conclude at this point? It appears that Jeffrey Epstein was involved in intelligence work, of some kind, for someone'--and it probably wasn't American intelligence either. The U.S. Intelligence Community is lenient about the private habits of high-value agents or informants, but they won't countenance running sex trafficking rings for minors on American soil, for years. While it's plausible that Epstein was sharing some information with the FBI'--many criminals do so to buy themselves some insurance'--it's implausible that he was mainly working for the Americans.
Who are the suspects then? It seems awfully coincidental that Epstein's best pal and business partner for decades has been Ghislaine Maxwell, the British socialite and daughter of the late Robert Maxwell, the media mogul who died under mysterious circumstances in 1991. Something of a Bond villain turned real life, Maxwell loved the limelight, despite being a swindler and a spy. British counterintelligence assessed that Maxwell was working for the KGB, while pervasive allegations that he was working for Mossad too are equally plausible.
Since the lines between Russian intelligence, Israeli intelligence and organized crime can get remarkably blurry in practice, as I've explained previously, assessing whom Epstein's been working for may prove difficult to answer with any precision. But we have a suspect list to start asking questions.
What's not in doubt is that a sex trafficking ring centered on minors, which involved numerous global VIPs in compromising situations, would be of high interest to quite a few intelligence services. The Epstein saga seems certain to get even more unpleasant and interesting.
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 14:34
  Israeli TV. Anonymous commented:Jeffrey Epstein's Black Book is a veritable Who's Who of Mk-Ultra (CIA-Mossad mind control) and OperationMockingbird (CIA-Mossad control of the media worldwide) agents and victims.The 97-page address book details multiple addresses, phone numbers, e-mails and other contact information for:Bill Clinton, Donald Trump, crypto-Jew John Kerry , various members of the Kennedy clan, Tony Blair...'The men behind the scam.' The Black Book lists:Janice Dickinson , who claims Bill Cosby drugged and raped her .Also:Joan Rivers, Special Envoy for Middle East Peace George Mitchell, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg , New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, Barbara Walters, Alec Baldwin, Ralph Fiennes, George Hamilton, Dustin Hoffman, Kevin Spacey, Liz Hurley, Lauren Hutton, Naomi Campbell, Christy Turlington, Henry Kissinger , Courtney Love, Mick Jagger, Cornelia Guest, Phil Collins, Itzhak Perlman, Simon LeBon, Charlie Rose, Richard Branson, playwright Candace Bushnell, designers Tom Ford and Vera Wang, soap opera actress Nadia Bjorlin and erotic film star Koo Stark.Among the high-powered Palm Beachers listed in the Black Book book are:Catherine and Fred Adler, Samantha and Serena Boardman, Jimmy and Jane Buffett, Pepe Fanjul, Conrad and Barbara Black, Gerry Goldsmith, Marjorie Gubelman, Dana Hammond, David Koch , Henry Kravis, Frayda and George Lindemann Sr., Bob and Todd Meister, Alfred Taubman, Stanley, Bea and Brett Tollman, and Martin Trust.Epstein is also well acquainted with Harvard’s ex-president Larry Summers - the two served together on the Trilateral Commission and the Council on Foreign Relations. ...Alan Dershowitz Alan Dershowitz , a top friend of Israel and of Jeffrey Epstein, has been linked to Epstein's colourful 'entertainments'.Harvard law professor Dershowitz investigated some of Epstein's accusers and provided both the police and the State attorney's office with a dossier containing information about their personal behavior, which had been obtained from their personal MySpace pages.Also linked to Epstein have been Tony Blair, Rupert Murdoch , Ehud Olmert and Henry Kissinger.In May 2008, the top people were invited to Israel to celebrate the 60th anniversity of Israel. For Israel, 60 Candles And Many Luminaries.The following people got together for the celebration:Alan DershowitzLeslie Wexner, founder of the Limited clothing chain and one of richest men in the United StatesHenry A. Kissinger Ehud Olmert Tony BlairRupert MurdochWhite House domestic policy adviser Jay LefkowitzRon Lauder, the former ambassador who now heads the World Jewish CongressVáclav HavelMort Zuckerman Efraim Halevy, the former director of Mossad.Dennis RossBernard-Henri Lévy Goldman Sachs strategist Abby Joseph Cohen. President BushEhud Olmert Sheldon Adelson, the Las Vegas casino tycoon and a big financier of Republican and Jewish causesShimon PeresMikhail Gorbachev 
Steven Hoffenberg - Wikipedia
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 01:48
Steven Hoffenberg is the chairman of Towersinvestors.com,a financial services company and a website overrun by machine generated advertising, Postpublishing.buzz. In 1995 Hoffenberg pleaded guilty to bilking investors out of $475 million taking away a key element of Jeffrey Epstein's financial support. In 1997 Judge Robert W. Sweet sentenced him to 20 years in prison, plus a $1 million fine and $463 million in restitution. (per the Bureau of Prisons he was released in October 2013).He settled a civil suit with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for $60 million. Hoffenberg is currently paying back all of the above investors debt.[1][2] He was the owner of the New York Post.
At the time the SEC considered the fraud to be "one of the largest Ponzi schemes in history."[3]
References [ edit ]
Convicted Ponzi schemer: I'll conduct $50 million marketing campaign for Trump - POLITICO
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 01:53
Steven Hoffenberg is escorted by FBI agents in an Arkansas parking garage after turning himself in on Feb. 15, 1996. | AP Photo
A convicted Ponzi schemer on Tuesday filed a curious report with the Federal Election Commission declaring that his super PAC was going to conduct a $50 million digital-media marketing campaign boosting Donald Trump.
Steven Hoffenberg filed paperwork in late April to create a super PAC called Get Our Jobs Back Inc. The PAC, which has yet to disclose any cash donations, filed a report Tuesday indicating that a company called Statware Inc. was making an in-kind donation of services worth $50 million. The PAC listed the services as ''Digital Media Marketing, Revenue Sharing,'' though there's little evidence yet of such a campaign.
Story Continued Below
Statware Inc. is a private company based in Centerbrook, Connecticut, that advises financial brokers on issues related to sensitive or proprietary data. According to its website, the firm does not have outside investors and operates ''without distraction or undue outside influences.''
Hoffenberg, a born-again Christian and a former owner of the New York Post, spent more than a decade in federal prison for committing what the SEC called ''one of the largest Ponzi schemes in history." In 1995, Hoffenberg pleaded guilty to selling $475 million in fraudulent notes and bonds to multiple investors, and ultimately using some of the profits from separate investors to pay interest owed to the earlier stakeholders. He was sentenced to 20 years in federal prison and required to pay $1 million in fines and $463 million in restitution. Hoffenberg later settled with the SEC for $60 million.
In May, Hoffenberg said in a statement that he intends for his PAC to raise more than $1 billion in support of Trump.
"The Trump Super PAC team staff will raise over $1 Billion Dollars with expert stock brokers in the USA for the White House race victory by Trump now," the statement read.
"Voters don't want any more foolish media TV experts spin, voters need jobs & money right now in the broken USA. The voters need loans to open small companies that are the foundation of the USA industry. Trump is the only expert in Jobs, and the voter's small businesses demanding loans. Media TV experts don't understand the demanded jobs right now by the voters. Trump knows what the voters demand in jobs & voters' loans for the voter's small business to rebuild the broken USA jobs market."
Reached by phone, Hoffenberg initially said he would charge $1 million for an interview, then said he doesn't do interviews and referred questions to a spokesman.
When a reporter pointed out that it was a federal crime to knowingly report false information on an FEC form, Hoffenberg threatened to sue if the reporter suggested that the FEC form contained false information.
A spokesman, Theodore Fotsis, later called to say that Hoffenberg was ''furious'' about the phone call and that he was a born-again Christian, so he would not report false information.
''The media has treated him really, really bad over the years,'' Fotsis said.
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Columbus is where the torture taxi and lolita express meet. | Mockingbird Paper
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 20:25
Throughout the ongoing Prince Andrew sex scandal there has been speculation as to the involvement of former President Bill Clinton. The tabloid press are happy to note the number of times he was on Jeffrey Epstein's private jet. They gleefully wonder how this will impact Hillary Clinton's latest presidential bid. The mainstream media dutifully reports Epstein's previous conviction for soliciting child prostitution, but do not give his whole history. That history is as intertwined with the intelligence community and organized crime as it is with the fashion world and royalty. Where it all meets is not on a private island, Palm Springs or London, but Columbus Ohio.
In 2003 The Columbus Free Press reported that Jeffrey Epstein had ''recently loaned his jet to Bill Clinton.'' The mainstream media did not trumpet this older connection between Clinton and Epstein when the latter was arrested in 2007 nor did it speculate loudly on it's possible impact on Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential bid. Epstein's companion Ghislaine Maxwell, who is alleged to have procured pubescents for the prince, was also mentioned along with the death of her father, publisher Robert Maxwell. Multiple sources, including noted investigative journalist Seymour Hersh, allege that the elder Maxwell was a long time asset of Israeli intelligence.
The portrait painted of Epstein prior to his prosecution for pandering is peculiar. He made a fortune managing the money of Les Wexner. In 2009 Epstein's phone book was released on the internet. Bill Clinton's name is not in it. Wexner's name is there with individual listings for multiple residences and vehicles. There are also two separate phone numbers listed as ''command center.''
Epstein had his own phone numbers listed in the same book presumably in case his butler, who tried to sell the book to an undercover FBI agent, needed to reach him. There are two separate listing for phones in an ''armored Mercedes''. There are also two phone numbers listed for ''guest Mercedes.'' It is not clear from the phone book if this means there are two armored Mercedes and two unarmored Mercedes in case a guest needs one or if the vehicles each had two phones or some combination thereof.
Jeff Epstein's boss has a secret command center in the Columbus area. Epstein has an armored Mercedes with two phones or two armored Mercedes. His girlfriend's father is alleged to have smuggled weapons to Israel and now he and said girlfriend are accused of providing teenage sex slaves to a member of the British Royal Family. Why the tabloids have not linked all these publicly documented facts together might have something to do with their being owned by his friends. Epstein's phone book proves he has many friends in media and government. The Mockingbird will examine all 98 pages for more persons of interest in the coming weeks.
The 2003 Free Press article touched on Wexner providing money and PR support to build the case for the Iraq War. It was too early 2003 to conclusively say that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. In the lead up to the war a massive intelligence effort was tasked with providing evidence suggesting these programed existed to assist PR campaigns like the one Wexner was privately running.
While Epstein was managing Wexner's money it would have been hard for him not to notice that the latter's company was importing clothing from Hon Kong on an airline run by the CIA. Southern Air Transport has a long history of drug smuggling going back to Vietnam era. It's regularly scheduled flights from Hon Kong for The Limited were the cornerstone of the local development push to convert Rickenbacker Air Base to Rickenbacker Airport in the 1990s. Southern Air Transport also operated the C-123 Globemaster that was shot down in Nicaragua, an event which touched off the Iran-Contra revelations.
At the same time that Rickenbacker became a transport hub for cargo carried by CIA backed airline that was both known to smuggle drugs and involved in the Iran-Contra affair, Wexner's connections to organized crime were named in a Columbus Police intelligence report. A trucking company linked to the mob was also named in that report. That trucking company carried up thirty percent of The Limited's ground cargo. The CIA handled the air cargo, the mob handled the ground cargo and Epstein balanced the books. This peculiar set of business arrangements seem to shed light on the need for multiple armored Mercedes and phones that go to command centers.
Southern Air Transport ran into money trouble and it's route was taken over by Evergreen Aviation, which also had a history of connection to the CIA. Evergreen, despite it's own recent financial problems, still keeps one Boeing 747 in Columbus and still maintains regular service to Hon Kong. The only terminal that can serve that aircraft is owned by Landmark Aviation.
Landmark Aviation's core business is fixed base operations, or FBOs. An FBO is a sort of private air terminal, fueling and maintenance facility for charter, business and private aircraft. Some FBOs are very bare bones. Landmark's Columbus FBO is a posh facility with showers, conference rooms, a dedicated concierge and even its own Customs Inspection.
Landmark Aviation was alleged to have been the FBO of choice for the CIA's extraordinary rendition program, known as the ''torture taxi.'' Under that program, people were kidnapped, flown to black sites around the globe and tortured for months or years. European governments were aware of this program and some even issued arrest warrants for CIA officers involved.
Landmark Aviation cleaned up it's image somewhat since the revelations. It was sold and split with FBO operations being put into trusteeship. One of those trustees was former CIA director James Slesinger. It was later sold to the Bush family friendly Carlyle Group.
Landmark Aviation took over it's Columbus Customs facility from Lane Aviation less than a year after the latter opened it in partnership with former. Epstein's phone book listed Lane Aviation as the sole FBO in Columbus. It is not known if he still uses it, but Landmark's facility does have more posh amenities fit for billionaires, princes, presidents and spies.
The allegations being leveled against Epstein include trafficking minors for sex across international boundaries. The logistics of getting a minor across a border for such purposes would be much less complicated with the help of a Customs facility located in a friendly private facility operated by a company familiar with covert operations and making people disappear. Epstein is clearly no stranger to navigating that social space. Landmark even offers valet parking for the armored Mercedes.
Taking one step back to look beyond Florida and another step back to look into history and one views a different picture. It is of a billionaire and a spy's daughter providing minors for sex to very important people in a house full of cameras. That same billionaire has an armored Mercedes, a friend with a command center, business relations with multiple CIA backed airlines, connections to the mob, many friends in the media and was associated with the false PR that lead to the Iraq war. This should have more bearing on Hillary Clinton's election prospects than the recent location of her husband's cigars.
Who Is Maurene Comey, James Comey's Daughter? | Law & Crime
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 14:57
Maurene Comey, daughter of former FBI Director James Comey, is reportedly a prosecutor in the new criminal case against convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein. This details comes out of a new CNN report. The source is described as a person ''with knowledge of the case.''
This and an Associated Press article are backing up a Daily Beast report that broke news Epstein faces new charges. It seems like the defendant must contend with a sex trafficking case affecting ''dozens'' of alleged victims. The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York is handling the case. Their Public Corruption Unit is taking the lead on this, but are being helped by human trafficking officials and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, authorities said.
Maurene Comey is an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the SDNY.
She's worked on cases involving alleged racketeering, drugs and weapons offenses, embezzlement, obstruction of justice, and robbery.
Like father, like daughter. Her dad was U.S. Attorney for the same office before becoming U.S. Deputy Attorney General under President George W. Bush. Despite being a Republican, at least at the time, he became FBI Director under President Barack Obama, and controversially handled the Clinton email investigation. He stayed into the next administration, and President Donald Trump fired him. It was a whole thing.
Law&Crime reached out to the Southern District of New York about the Epstein case, and the detail about Maurene Comey. Spokesman Nicholas Biase declined to comment.
Details on the case remain sketchy, though the involvement of the Public Corruption Unit caught the attention of legal experts. Gene Rossi, a Law&Crime trial analyst and former federal prosecutor for the Eastern District of Virginia, suggested to us that Epstein may face other charges. It could mean counts of money laundering, public corruption, or tax-related crimes.
''Who knows?'' he said. ''The sky's the limit.''
[Screengrab via CBSN]
Geraldine Laybourne - Wikipedia
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 00:30
Geraldine Laybourne (n(C)e Bond; born May 19, 1947)[1] is a former TV executive and an American entrepreneur in media and technology. She led the team that created Nickelodeon in the 1980s and '90s and co-founded Oxygen Media.[2] She is co-founder of a tech startup called Katapult.
Early life and education [ edit ] Laybourne was born in Martinsville, New Jersey, a rural community of about 400.[1] She is the second of four children, born to a former radio writer/actress and community organizer and a stock broker.[citation needed ]
In 1969, Laybourne earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History from Vassar College. In 1971, she received a Master of Science degree in Elementary Education from the University of Pennsylvania.[3]
Career [ edit ] After college, Laybourne had various jobs. From 1969 to 1970, Laybourne worked at Wallace, McHarg, Roberts and Todd, an architecture firm in Philadelphia.[1] From 1972 to 1973, she worked as a teacher at Concord Academy in Concord, Massachusetts. Then from 1974 to 1976, Laybourne worked as a festival coordinator of the New York American Film Festival.[3]
In 1974, she co-founded the Media Center for Children, which she was involved with until 1977.[3] Laybourne said she founded the Media Center for Children because she was concerned about the media her children were watching.
From 1978 to 1980, she was a partner at Early Bird Special Company in New York.[3]
Nickelodeon (1980-1996) [ edit ] In 1980, Laybourne was hired as a program manager at Nickelodeon, a year-old network, where she initiated the focus-group approach to programming.
Laybourne was one of the first people to focus on television programming for kids. She spent 15 years at Nickelodeon, taking over the management of the network, and started accepting advertising for the network, in 1984.[1][4]
Laybourne and her team were responsible for creating and building the Nickelodeon brand, launching Nick at Nite and expanding the network by establishing it in other countries, developing theme parks and creating Nickelodeon magazine, movie, toy and publishing divisions.[citation needed ]
Under her leadership, Nickelodeon became the top-rated 24-hour cable programming service and won Emmy Awards, Peabody Awards, CableACE Awards and Parents' Choice Awards. The network had a 40% profit margin and explosive growth every year.[5]
Laybourne built Nickelodeon into the first global television network to profit from selling advertising targeted towards children. Her programming approach, which made a point of talking to children as equals, built the tiny cable network, which had only five employees in 1980, into an $8 billion business.[6]
Disney (1996-1998) [ edit ] Laybourne left Nickelodeon in 1996 to become president of Disney-ABC Cable Networks, guiding the growth and overseeing the programming of the Disney Channel and represented the corporate interests in Lifetime, A&E, E!, and The History Channel. She led the development two projects that did not come to fruition: ABC 24 Hour News cable channel and ABZ, an innovative education channel. Laybourne played a role in the creation and management of ABC's Saturday morning children's programming schedule, with the successful launch of One Saturday morning. She's said to have felt stifled by the corporate structure at Disney.[6]
Oxygen Media (1998-2007) [ edit ] In 1998, Laybourne left Disney and partnered with Oprah Winfrey and Carsey-Werner Productions to create Oxygen Media, a cable TV company dedicated to creating television and Internet programming for women. She also purchased three women-oriented online services from her former MTV boss, Robert W. Pittman.[citation needed ]
On February 2, 2000 (a date which plays off the chemical compound of oxygen'--O2/O2), the Oxygen Network premiered to 10 million subscribers.[6]
LVMH was an early investor, but left in 2001 when Laybourne changed strategy from being an Internet company to a television company.[citation needed ]
Laybourne initially hired 700 people, but scaled down to 250. The company went on to become profitable in 2004. Microsoft billionaire, Paul Allen, who invested in three rounds of Oxygen, forced Oxygen's sale in the late 2007 to NBC Universal for $925 million. At the end of Laybourne's tenure, Oxygen had 270,000 prime-time weekday viewers in 74 million homes.[5]
Mentorship [ edit ] Laybourne started the mentoring program, Global Women's Mentoring Walks, which pairs established and emerging women professionals to engage in mentoring partnerships in communities across the globe.[7]
Personal life [ edit ] In 1970, Laybourne married Kit Laybourne, a television producer, entrepreneur, author, and educator. They have two children, Emmy and Sam, and four grandchildren. Daughter Emmy Laybourne is the author of a series of young adult novels called Monument 14 and is an actress who has appeared in Superstar and other films. Son Sam Laybourne is a writer and producer for television series such as Arrested Development, Cougar Town, The Michael J. Fox Show, and Grandfathered with John Stamos.
Boards and memberships [ edit ] 9 Story Media Group, Board MemberAcumen Fund, AdvisorBetaworks, Board MemberKatapult, Chairman of the Board, Co-FounderSpringboard, Advisor2007-present: Symantec, Board Member; Compensation Committee[8]1997-present: Vassar College, Board of Trustees; 2010-14: President of the Alumnae/i Association of Vassar College (AAVC); Co-Chair of Vassar Presidential Search Committee[9]Vital Voices, AdvisorPast positions2010-2015: Alloy Media + Marketing, Chairman of the BoardCable Positive, Honorary Chair2013-2015: Defy Media, Chairman of Board2008-2102: Electronic Arts2009-2013: JC PenneyKindercareMove.comNational Cable & Telecommunications AssociationNational Council for Families and TelevisionNew York Women in Film & Television, Advisory Board MemberThe White House ProjectHonors [ edit ] Advertising Hall of FameAlliance for Women in Media, Genii AwardAnnenberg Public Policy Center, Distinguished Lifetime Contribution to Children and Television AwardBroadcasting & Cable Hall of FameCable and Telecommunications Association for Marketing (CTAM), Grand Tam Award2004: The Cable Center, Hall of Fame[10]Creative Coalition, Spotlight AwardEntrepreneurs Club, Member[citation needed ]National Academy of Cable Programming, Governor's AwardNew York Women in Film & Television, Muse Award[citation needed ]2005: Paley Center for Media, She Made It[11]Sara Lee Corporation, Frontrunner Award1996: The Hollywood Reporter, 50 Most Influential Women in the Entertainment Industry, rank #1Time, 25 Most Influential people in AmericaWomen in Cable AwardUniversity of Missouri''Kansas City, Entrepreneur of the Year AwardWomen in Communications (New York), Matrix Award for BroadcastingWorks and publications [ edit ] Laybourne, Geraldine (1993). "Chapter 23: The Nickelodeon Experience". In Berry, Gordon L; Asamen, Joy K (Keiko) (eds.). Children & Television: Images in a Changing Sociocultural World. Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications, Inc. pp. 303''307. ISBN 978-1-483-32622-1. OCLC 918558971. References [ edit ] ^ a b c d Genasci, Lisa (28 October 1995). "President of Nickelodeon Channels Her Resources: Television: President Geraldine Laybourne couples creativity and business acumen in making cable network top choice among children". Los Angeles Times. The Associated Press. p. D-4. ^ Gross, Jane (21 April 2000). "Public Lives; From Childhood TV Fan to Master of Media". The New York Times. ^ a b c d Gunzerath, David (2004). "Laybourne, Geraldine (1947-), U.S. Media Executive". In Newcomb, Horace (ed.). Encyclopedia of Television (2nd (2014) ed.). London: Routledge. pp. 1331''1332. ISBN 978-1-135-19479-6. OCLC 870978716. ^ Poniewozik, James (31 January 2000). "Television: Will Women Take A Breath Of Oxygen?". Time. ^ a b "World According to...Geraldine Laybourne". Business Journals. 24 January 2008. ^ a b c "Geraldine Laybourne". Biography.com. 2010. Archived from the original on 29 August 2010. ^ Seller, Patricia (2010). "Patricia Sellers on Geraldine Laybourne and the 2009 Mentoring Walk". Vital Voices Global Partnership. ^ "Management Team: Symantec". Symantec. ^ "Trustee: Geraldine Bond Laybourne '69, P'93". Vassar College . Retrieved 26 June 2019 . ^ "Cable Hall of Fame". The Cable Center. 2004. ^ "The Paley Center for Media: She Made It: Geraldine Laybourne". Paley Center for Media, She Made It. 2005. Archived from the original on 1 April 2016. Further reading [ edit ] Gunzerath, David (2004). "Laybourne, Geraldine (1947-), U.S. Media Executive". In Newcomb, Horace (ed.). Encyclopedia of Television (2nd (2014) ed.). London: Routledge. pp. 1331''1332. ISBN 978-1-135-19479-6. OCLC 870978716. Altschuler, Jane; Laybourne, Geraldine (25 August 2008). "Television Academy Interviews: Geraldine Laybourne, Executive" (Video interview) . Television Academy Foundation and New York Women in Film & Television. '' Part 1, Part 2, Part 3External links [ edit ] Geraldine Laybourne on IMDb
Kit Laybourne - Wikipedia
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 00:28
Kit Laybourne is a TV producer and educator. Laybourne was an executive producer of animation, documentary and interactive shows at Oxygen Network a company co-founded by his wife Geraldine and Oprah Winfrey. His major production credits[1] include Eureeka's Castle and Gullah Gullah Island for Nickelodeon, Liquid Television for MTV, Braingames for HBO, and Media Probes for PBS. Most recently, he became Chief Creative Officer for The Whistle, a media company focusing on sports for kids.[2]
For a dozen years, Kit and partner Eli Noyes ran an independent animation & branding studio in TriBeCa, Noyes & Laybourne. Most of its major works included ID's for MTV and Nickelodeon, shorts for the Children's Television Workshop, and shows for Scholastic and Nick Junior.
Kit was a Core Faculty Member in the MA program in Media Studies at the New School, where he taught both early and late in his career. He created on-going courses about Media Design and The Producer's Craft.
Writings [ edit ] Laybourne, Kit (1979). The Animation Book : A Complete Guide to Animated Filmmaking--From Flip-Books to Sound Cartoons. New York: Three Rivers Press. ISBN 9780517533895 The book was originally published in 1979, but upon further research into digital animation techniques, a new edition was released in 1998.[3][4]Kit's most recent book is "Mediapedia",[5] published in 2009 by Globe Pequot Press.Civic Engagement [ edit ] He serves on the board of trustees of Trinity College School in Port Hope Ontario. He served on the board of James Balog's Earth Vision Trust and Bank Street College of Education. He currently teaches a Digital Design course at Woodbourne Correctional Facility, through The Bard College Prison Initiative. Kit's community service has included Board positions with Earth Vision Trust and The Bank Street College of Education. He was on an Education Advisory Group with the Cooper-Hewett Museum and has been an Advisor to The Opportunity Agenda, an organization building the national will to expand opportunity in America. Kit and his wife, Geraldine Laybourne, are long time supporters of the Bard High School & Early College program in Newark, Queens and Manhattan.
References [ edit ] External links [ edit ] Kit Laybourne on IMDb Kit Laybourne's channel on Vimeo
Epstein Arrest: Peak Swamp? - Gold Goats 'n Guns
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 14:31
''Bernie Birnbaum is a horse of a different color, ethics-wise that is'....'... as in he ain't got none!'''-- Johnny Caspar, ''Miller's Crossing''
Serial pederast Jeffrey Epstein is going to be arrested again.
The big questions are why? And why now?
I never doubted Donald Trump's sincerity in wanting Hillary in jail. But the reality is that Trump was not in any position to do so. Until a few months ago.
When Attorney General William Barr ended the Mueller investigation back in February that was a turning point. I talked about it back then in a piece called ''The Old Political Order is Just Old.''
Mueller, his staff of hatchetmen, the Obama administration and the rest of the corrupt old-guard in D.C. fully expected to be allowed free rein to convict Trump politically of Obstruction of Justice based on an interpretation of Federal Statutes that could only be justified in the world of Philip K. Dick's Minority Report.
When that didn't happen, they are now looking at potential blowback from a vain and vindictive man occupying the supposedly most powerful office in the world.
But is that really the case anymore? It seems John Bolton has been more president than Trump recently.
I was cautiously optimistic that Trump would turn the corner on his presidency now that Mueller, impeachment and the rest of it would lift from his shoulders. His foreign policy maneuvers didn't fill me with much, if any, confirmation of this hope.
But domestically signs were there that he had stabilized the battlefield.
Epstein's arrest tells me he's now out for blood.
Because this goes directly to the heart of the matter. Trump left the Clintons' social circle in disgust and I'm convinced he ran to stop her corrupt sell out of the U.S.
Never forget that, while corruption is rampant in D.C., it is not all-pervasive. It's not a black and white thing.
William Barr may not be a Boy Scout or anything but even he, like Trump, has a disgust circuit. And that circuit has a threshold.
The level of corruption of the Departments of Justice, State, Treasury and the intelligence agencies needed to coordinate the RussiaGate hoax all to serve as Hillary's revenge porn was too much for enough people.
And there are still plenty of people in all of those departments willing to step up now that the board state has changed.
Remember back when Trump said we should just leave Hillary be, she's been through enough? That wasn't him capitulating to the Deep State, that was him offering her a way out. He knew then what was going on but thought he was powerless to stop it, politically.
To go after her you go after the person who is her Achilles' heel, Epstein through his association with Bill. Because what if this isn't just about Bill's antics?
But this is more than just Hillary and Bill.
This is likely far deeper a rabbit hole than anyone in D.C. wants to admit. Don't think for a second that Epstein hasn't been blackmailing very prominent people for years.
Because he has. And they are all now scared to death.
And Robert Mueller is up to his neck in this. Because it was Mueller who helped Epstein mostly get off the hook the last time and had the court documents sealed.
Now that Mike Cernovich worked to get those documents unsealed, we have an arrest warrant a week later by a Justice Department led by someone, at this point, loyal to Trump.
Even if Barr and Trump have a marriage of convenience here, it doesn't matter.
What matters is that Epstein will no longer be able to hide behind Clinton bag men and will this time have to cut a real deal to stay out of gen pop.
This process will be slow and painful, but it will grind to the kind of conclusion that will only benefit Trump's re-election bid. It will be an epic drip feed of leaks, innuendos, implications, indictments and the rest.
Because there comes a point where the Alinsky method of accusing your enemy of the thing you do backfires when it's raping 14-year-old girls.
Once this thing gets a head of steam, once the #MeToo crowd gets a hold of this, there won't be anyone left standing. I always said Hillary would indict herself. Her insane lust for power and revenge against her obstacles led us here.
And it will lead her to the kind of shame and disgrace that befits her avarice.
When Nancy Pelosi's daughter is out there signaling for her mother on this immediately, you know this is bad.
Pelosi doesn't roll over for nothing folks. Think what you want about her but she's a pitbull. And she rolled over on border wall funding last week.
This Epstein arrest is a testament to what happens when the pendulum swings too far in one direction. Where despicable people get away with the most heinous acts simply because they are connected in a web of corruption and venality.
Maybe this is the moment of Peak Swamp? Maybe it's the moment where we can see things begin, ever so slightly to improve.
Is it too little, too late? Likely. But something had to be done to keep our faith in our political and social institutions intact. Because otherwise that way leads to only chaos and collapse.
Join my Patreon because you also weep for humanity at where these people have led us.
Report: Alex Acosta Said He Was Told Jeffrey Epstein 'Belonged to Intelligence' And 'To Leave It Alone'
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 14:29
Best-selling author Vicky Ward reported Tuesday that Alexander Acosta told the Trump transition team when asked about his handling of Jeffrey Epstein's case that "I was told Epstein 'belonged to intelligence' and to leave it alone."From Vicky Ward, The Daily Beast, "Jeffrey Epstein's Sick Story Played Out for Years in Plain Sight":
Epstein's name, I was told, had been raised by the Trump transition team when Alexander Acosta, the former U.S. attorney in Miami who'd infamously cut Epstein a non-prosecution plea deal back in 2007, was being interviewed for the job of labor secretary. The plea deal put a hard stop to a separate federal investigation of alleged sex crimes with minors and trafficking.[...] In 2007 and 2008, as the FBI prepared a 53-page indictment that would charge Epstein with sex crimes, Epstein's powerful legal team played the influence card.
After the one meeting with then-U.S. Attorney Acosta, where presumably "intelligence" was mentioned, the indictment was shelved and, instead, Epstein signed a non-prosecution agreement with federal prosecutors, pleading guilty to one count of solicitation of prostitution and one count of procurement of minors for prostitution, which earned him a cushy 13 months in county jail, from where he was allowed to leave to work at his office and go for walks.
Vicky Ward talked about the case Monday on Democracy Now:
Here's a clue as to what intelligence agency may be behind Epstein via The Memory Hole:
Epstein's pals include heads of state, entrepreneurs, academics and research scientists, celebrities, and numerous beautiful women, notably Ghislaine Maxwell, daughter of media mogul Robert Maxwell (n(C) Jn Ludv­k Hyman Binyamin Hoch). Robert Maxwell, head of the Mirror Group Newspapers, was alleged to be a Mossad agent by Seymour Hersh in his 1991 book on Israel's nuclear program, The Samson Option. Maxwell denied the charge and sued Hersh for libel, but he died in November 1991, and the suit died with him. Hersh countersued and eventually received an apology and a settlement.This has led to the speculation that Ghislaine Maxwell has Mossad connections as well. She was instrumental in procuring young girls for Epstein, in a constant supply for his use, her own use, and for loans to others. According to the testimony of several of the girls involved, they not only serviced Epstein and Maxwell but also their associates, including Prince Andrew, Alan Dershowitz, and other powerful players. The girls were asked to bring back reports on their liaisons, which were sometimes filmed with hidden cameras. These look like high-end blackmail operations, with Epstein and Maxwell skimming sex off the top for their own sick pleasure.
Virginia Roberts, now married and using the name Virginia Giuffre, filed an affidavit in 2015 claiming that Ghislaine Maxwell recruited her in 1999 at age 15 while she had a summer job at Mar-a-Lago. Giuffre spent four years as Epstein's "sex slave" and was also pimped out to Prince Andrew and Dershowitz (although both have strenuously denied the charges).
Gordon Thomas and Martin Dillon's 2002 book "Robert Maxwell: Israel's Superspy" states definitively that he was a Mossad agent.Jeffrey Epstein's madame was Ghislaine Maxwell, daughter of Robert Maxwell - a Mossad Agent. What are the odds Epstein was also working for Mossad? I mean the guy was blackmailing the top politicians/businessmen in the USA via underage sex. https://t.co/alUurM2eVb
— JillColtonReturns (@JillColtonFree) July 7, 2019As I reported yesterday, Ann Coulter said she believes Epstein may have a "state sponsor" and was running an obvious blackmailing operation.
"Epstein according to both the girls accounts, he wanted them to have sex with powerful men, come back to him and report on it, describe what they wanted what their fetishes were and he had cameras throughout the house so this is obviously for blackmailing purposes," Coulter said.
"It just seems to me something much bigger is behind this -- perhaps a state sponsor -- powerful enough people ... it just seems to me there's something a very powerful force behind what's going on here and I am still nervous about this not coming to a conclusion, somehow this getting compromised," she said.
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Michael Mukasey - Wikipedia
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 14:23
81st United States Attorney General
Michael Bernard Mukasey[1]( ; born July 28, 1941)[2] is a lawyer and former federal judge who served as the 81st Attorney General of the United States. He was appointed as Attorney General by President George W. Bush following the resignation of Alberto Gonzales. Mukasey also served for 18 years as a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, six of those years as Chief Judge. Mukasey was the second Jewish U.S. Attorney General.[3] Mukasey is currently a partner at the international law firm Debevoise & Plimpton.[4]
Early life and education [ edit ] Mukasey was born in 1941 in New York City.[5] His father was born near Baranavichy in Belarus (then in the Russian Empire) and emigrated to the U.S. in 1921.[6][7]
Mukasey graduated in 1959 from the Ramaz School, an independent (formerly boys' and now co-educational) Modern Orthodox Jewish prep school in the Upper East Side neighborhood of Manhattan in New York City. His wife, Susan, was later a teacher and headmistress of the lower school at Ramaz, and both of their children (Marc and Jessica)[8] attended the school.[9]
As an undergraduate student, Mukasey was the editorials editor of the Columbia Daily Spectator[10] at Columbia University, where he received his Artium Baccalaureus degree in 1963, majoring in history. He received his Bachelor of Laws from Yale Law School in 1967.
Early career [ edit ] Mukasey practiced law for 20 years in New York City, serving for four years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York[11] in which he worked with Rudolph Giuliani. From 1967-72, he was an associate with the law firm of Webster Sheffield Fleischmann Hitchcock & Brookfield, later known as Webster & Sheffield.[12] In 1976, he joined the New York law firm of Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler, to which he returned after retirement from the U.S. District Court.[13] Mukasey began teaching at Columbia Law School in the spring of 1993 and has taught there every spring semester since.[14]
Mukasey's son, Marc L. Mukasey, serves as Global Co-Chair of Greenberg Traurig's White Collar Defense and Special Investigations Practice.[15] The Mukaseys have a professional relationship with Rudy Giuliani; Mukasey and son were also justice advisers to Rudy Giuliani's presidential campaign.[16] Mukasey administered the oath of office to Mayor-elect Giuliani in 1994 and 1998.[16]
Judicial career [ edit ] On July 27, 1987, Mukasey was nominated to be a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York in Manhattan by President Ronald Reagan, to a seat vacated by Abraham David Sofaer. Mukasey was confirmed by the United States Senate on November 6, 1987, and received his commission on November 9, 1987; he took the bench in 1988. He served in that position for 18 years, including tenure as Chief Judge from March 2000[17] through July 2006.[18]
During his service on the bench, Mukasey presided over the criminal prosecution of Omar Abdel Rahman and El Sayyid Nosair, whom he sentenced to life in prison for a plot to blow up the United Nations and other Manhattan landmarks uncovered during an investigation into the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.[13] During that case, Mukasey spoke out against leaks by law enforcement officials regarding the facts of the case allegedly aimed at prejudicing potential jurors against the defendants.[19] During that case, Mukasey also refused to recuse himself, warning that the demand for his recusal would "disqualify not only an obscure district judge such as the author of this opinion, but also Justices Brandeis and Frankfurter ... each having been both a Jew and a Zionist."[20]
Mukasey also presided over the trial of Jose Padilla, ruling that the U.S. citizen and alleged terrorist could be held as an enemy combatant but was entitled to see his lawyers. Mukasey also was the judge in the litigation between developer Larry Silverstein and several insurance companies arising from the destruction of the World Trade Center.[13] In a 2003 suit, he issued a preliminary injunction preventing the Motion Picture Association of America from enforcing its ban against the distribution of screener copies of films during awards season, ruling that the ban was likely an unlawful restraint of trade unfair to independent filmmakers.
In June 2003, Democratic New York Senator Charles Schumer submitted Mukasey's name, along with four other Republicans or Republican appointees, as a suggestion for Bush to consider for nomination to the Supreme Court.[21]
On October 14, 2004, citing U.S. Supreme Court precedent, Mukasey reversed his September 2002 decision and dismissed a case in which plaintiffs in twenty consolidated actions sued the Italian insurance company Generali S.p.A. (Generali), seeking damages for nonpayment of insurance proceeds to beneficiaries of policies purchased by Holocaust victims before the end of World War II.[22] In so ruling, Mukasey gave deference to "a federal executive branch policy favoring voluntary resolution of Holocaust-era insurance claims."[23]
Retirement [ edit ] Although Article III of the U.S. Constitution entitles district court judges to hold their judicial appointments for life, in June 2006 Mukasey announced that he would retire as a judge and return to private practice at the end of the summer. On August 1, 2006, he was succeeded as Chief Judge of the Southern District by Judge Kimba Wood, entering senior status on the same day. Mukasey's retirement took effect on September 9, 2006. On September 12, 2006, Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler announced that Mukasey had rejoined the firm as a partner.[24]
On the March 18, 2007, episode of Meet the Press, Sen. Schumer suggested Mukasey as a potential Attorney General nominee who, "by [his] reputation and career, shows that [he] put rule of law first."[25]
After retiring from the bench, Mukasey made campaign contributions to Giuliani for president and Joe Lieberman for Senate.[26] Mukasey was also listed on the Giuliani campaign's Justice Advisory Committee.[27]
He is the recipient of several awards, most notably the Learned Hand Medal of the Federal Bar Council.[28]
Extrajudicial opinions on law and terrorism [ edit ] In May 2004, while still a member of the judiciary, Judge Mukasey delivered a speech (which he converted into a The Wall Street Journal opinion piece) that defended the USA PATRIOT Act; the piece also expressed doubt that the FBI engaged in racial profiling of Arabs and criticized the American Library Association for condemning the Patriot Act but not taking a position on librarians imprisoned in Cuba.[28]
On August 22, 2007, The Wall Street Journal published another op-ed by Mukasey, prompted by the resolution of the Padilla prosecution, in which he argued that "current institutions and statutes are not well suited to even the limited task of supplementing . . . a military effort to combat Islamic terrorism." Mukasey instead advocated for Congress, which "has the constitutional authority to establish additional inferior courts," to "turn [its] considerable talents to deliberating how to fix a strained and mismatched legal system."[29]
U.S. Attorney General [ edit ] On September 17, 2007, Mukasey was nominated by President Bush to replace Alberto Gonzales as the Attorney General. At his nomination press conference with the President, Mukasey stated, "The task of helping to protect our security, which the Justice Department shares with the rest of our government, is not the only task before us. The Justice Department must also protect the safety of our children, the commerce that assures our prosperity, and the rights and liberties that define us as a nation."[30]
Because Mukasey would likely serve only until the end of President Bush's term of office in January 2009, the White House hoped Mukasey would be confirmed by the Senate by October 8, 2007.[31] At first, a quick confirmation seemed likely. Senator Patrick Leahy, the Democratic Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, was pleased that Mukasey was committed to a new administrative rule that would reduce the influence of the White House and other politicians on Justice Department investigations and personnel. This concession sought to avoid problems that arose during the controversy over the dismissal of U.S. Attorneys under the previous Attorney General's tenure.[32][33]
President George W. Bush listens to remarks by Mukasey after announcing his nomination to be Attorney General.
However, during confirmation hearings, controversy arose over Mukasey's responses to questions about torture. Mukasey refused to state a clear legal position on the interrogation technique known as waterboarding (in which water is poured over a rag on the prisoner's face to simulate drowning). Leahy and the other nine Democratic committee members indicated to Mukasey, via letter, that they were "deeply troubled by your refusal to state unequivocally that waterboarding is illegal during your confirmation hearing..."[34]
It appeared that Mukasey may have been concerned about the potential pursuit of government employees or agents, and their authorizing superiors, in American or foreign courts under criminal charges, when responding to the Senate Judiciary committee questions.[35][36]In describing the issue's challenges to the Bush administration, The New York Times quoted Scott L. Silliman, director of the Center on Law, Ethics and National Security at Duke University, as saying about such court cases, which could ultimately reach the president: "You would ask not just who carried it out, but who specifically approved it."
However, Robert M. Chesney, of Wake Forest University School of Law, and other national security specialists have pointed out that prosecution within the United States would be impeded by laws adopted since 2005 which permit safe-harbor protections to interrogators for governmentally authorized actions. It was believed that secret Justice Department legal opinions approved waterboarding and other procedures officially called "harsh interrogation techniques".[35]
By November 1, 2007 five senators '' Christopher Dodd of Connecticut, Joseph Biden of Delaware, John Kerry of Massachusetts, Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts and Bernie Sanders of Vermont '' in addition to Leahy had announced their intention to vote against Mukasey's confirmation due to concerns about his stance on torture.[37][38] Nevertheless, on November 6 the Senate Judiciary Committee endorsed the nomination of Mukasey, by an 11 to 8 vote, and sent his confirmation on to the full Senate.[39] Two days later, the Senate confirmed Mukasey by a 53''40 vote.[40] The tight vote was the narrowest margin to confirm an attorney general in more than 50 years.[41] Mukasey was sworn in at a private ceremony on November 9, 2007.[42]
In 2009, legal ethics complaints were filed against Mukasey and other Bush administration attorneys for their roles in advocating torture.[43][44][45]
Notable issues and comments [ edit ] Relationship with Rudy Giuliani [ edit ] Mukasey and Giuliani have been friends since working at the same law firm in the early 1970s.[46] Mukasey pledged to recuse himself from cases involving Giuliani.[47] Newspaper reports assumed that Mukasey would further recuse himself from cases involving Bernard Kerik, a former New York City police commissioner under Giuliani, who was under federal investigation for bribery and other offenses. However, neither presidential spokespersons nor Mukasey returned reporters' inquiries into whether Mukasey would recuse himself from the Kerik case.[48][49]
During Giuliani's 2008 presidential campaign, Mukasey's stepson, Marc, was assigned by Giuliani's campaign to block Kerik's legal defense team from interviewing witnesses that might assist his defense in an attempt to protect Giuliani from the Kerik case.[50]
Crack cocaine stance [ edit ] In 2007 the United States Sentencing Commission amended the Federal Sentencing Guidelines to lessen the disparity between the penalties for the possession and trafficking of powder cocaine and crack cocaine, citing racial disparity and the unfairness of the 100-1 crack-powder penalty threshold ratio. The Commission instead implemented an 18-1 ratio. Michael Mukasey, in the Attorney General's capacity, vehemently opposed and testified against this change, warning that thousands of violent criminals may be released under the guidelines and endanger the community. Mukasey's move was criticized by advocates of elimination of crack-powder disparity.[51][52]
[ edit ] Speaking in London on March 14, 2008, Mukasey said that he hopes the detainees currently charged with participating in the September 11, 2001 attacks aren't executed if found guilty in order to avoid creating any martyrs.[53] Speaking in New York on March 5, 2012, Mukasey said his comments in 2008 were taken out of context. His "martyr" comment was a humorous reason offered as the only reason not to seek the death penalty. He then said if the detainees were found guilty, they should be executed in the due process of the law and not make an exception.
[ edit ] Speaking in San Francisco to the California Commonwealth Club of California on March 27, 2008, Mukasey defended President Bush's program of wiretapping calls between Americans and suspected foreign terrorists without court authorization, and implied that the government might have been able to prevent the attacks of September 11, 2001, if it had been able to wiretap a specific call to the U.S. from Afghanistan. Before September 11, 2001, Mukasey said, "We knew that there had been a call from someplace that was known to be a safe house in Afghanistan, and we knew that it came to the United States. We didn't know precisely where it went." He paused, seemed to stifle tears or at least suppress emotion, then continued, "You've got 3,000 people who went to work that day, and didn't come home, to show for that."[54]
Mukasey's comments were described by the Electronic Frontier Foundation as "a gross distortion of the facts and the law",[55] as both Executive Order 12333 and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act had offered a number of avenues for the United States government to intercept the phone call without a court order. Commentator Glenn Greenwald questioned Mukasey's honesty, as the alleged phone was unknown to the 9/11 Commission.[56][57] In a subsequent letter to Mukasey, House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers questioned whether any such phone call had ever actually occurred and, if so, why the government hadn't been able to use its then-existing legal authority and technological capabilities to monitor it.[58][59]
Violations of the law are not always crimes [ edit ] On August 12, 2008, Mukasey told American Bar Association annual meeting delegates that "not every wrong, or even every violation of the law, is a crime," with "only violations of the civil service laws" being found among hiring practices during Gonzales' tenure as Attorney General.[60] For example, a civil violation is not a crime.
Defense of torture [ edit ] On December 11, 2014, Mukasey publicly stated on CNN that he believed waterboarding could not be called torture.[61] In a 2008 hearing, he said waterboarding would feel like torture if he were subjected to it.[62]Asked directly if Michael Mukasey was a liar because he claimed that enhanced interrogation produced useful intelligence, Sen. John McCain stated unequivocally, "Yes, I know that he is. Even if we had gotten useful information, the propaganda and the image and the behavior of the greatest nation on earth from torturing people is not what we want and it helps the enemy."[63]
Defense of attorney-client privilege [ edit ] On April 18, 2018, Mukasey published an op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal entitled "Trump, Cohen and Attorney-Client Privilege" attacking the use of a search warrant by the federal government to search Mr. Cohen's legal records, and attacking the track records of former FBI Directors / assistant US Attorneys General Robert Mueller and James Comey.[64]
References [ edit ] ^ Shenon, Philip; Benjamin Weiser (September 18, 2007). "A Washington Outsider With Many Sides". The New York Times . Retrieved September 18, 2007 . ^ Leinwand, Donna; Kevin Johnson (September 17, 2007). "Mukasey is outsider with inside track". USA Today . Retrieved September 18, 2007 . ^ "Orthodox Jew tapped to replace Gonzalez". JTA. September 17, 2007. Archived from the original on November 11, 2007. The first Jewish Attorney General was Edward H. Levi. Judah Benjamin served as Attorney General of the Confederate States of America. ^ "Michael B. Mukasey". Debevoise & Plimpton . Retrieved May 10, 2009 . ^ "Judges of the United States Courts". November 4, 2007. Archived from the original on September 11, 2007. ^ Spasiuk, Elena (September 20, 2007). "Ð'инистÑом юстиции ÐША может стать чеÐ>>овек с беÐ>>оÑусскими коÑнями" [A person with Belarusian roots may become the US Minister of Justice] (in Russian). Belorusskie Novosti . Retrieved September 27, 2007 . ^ Sergeichik, Dmitrii (September 27, 2007). "Ð' БÑесте наÑÐ>>и даÐ>>ьнеÐ"о Ñодственника будущеÐ"о Ð"енÐÑокуÑоÑа ÐША" [A distant relative of the future US Attorney General has been found in Brest] (in Russian). Belorusskie Novosti . Retrieved September 27, 2007 . ^ Leinwand, Donna (October 14, 2007). "Mukasey hearings might not draw big fight". USA Today . Retrieved October 21, 2007 . ^ Heller, Jamie (September 17, 2007). "Mukasey's Pedigree". The Wall Street Journal Law Blog . Retrieved September 17, 2007 . Mukasey graduated from Ramaz in 1959 and went on to Columbia College and Yale Law School. ^ Heller, Jamie (September 17, 2007). "Mukasey as College Journalist". The Wall Street Journal . Retrieved September 22, 2007 . ^ "Mukasey, Michael B". Judges of the United States Courts. Federal Judicial Center. Archived from the original on September 11, 2007 . Retrieved September 17, 2007 . ^ "Profile: Michael B. Mukasey". Los Angeles Times. September 17, 2007. Archived from the original on February 1, 2018. ^ a b c Goldstein, Joseph (July 26, 2006). "As Judge Leaves for Law Firm, His Influence Is Remembered". The New York Sun . Retrieved September 16, 2007 . ^ "Mukasey: Attorney General Nominee and Columbia Law School Professor". Columbia Law School. October 17, 2007 . Retrieved October 19, 2007 . ^ "Marc L. Mukasey | Professionals | Greenberg Traurig LLP". www.gtlaw.com . Retrieved September 17, 2018 . ^ a b Barrett, Devlin (September 16, 2007). "Mukasey Has Long Terror Resume". The Washington Post. Associated Press . Retrieved September 17, 2007 . ^ "Judicial Milestones". The Third Branch. 32 (4). April 2000. Archived from the original on October 24, 2007 . Retrieved September 20, 2007 . ^ "Judicial Milestones". The Third Branch. 38 (9). September 2006. Archived from the original on October 24, 2007 . Retrieved September 20, 2007 . ^ Perez-Pena, Richard (July 31, 1993). "Judge Warns about Leaks in Bomb Case". The New York Times . Retrieved May 12, 2010 . ^ "Should Jewish Judges Recuse Themselves From Cases Involving Palestinian Terrorism?". Tablet Magazine. ^ "Letter to President George W. Bush" (Press release). Senator Charles E. Schumer. June 10, 2003. Archived from the original on July 14, 2003 . Retrieved September 15, 2007 . The others were Reagan-appointed federal appellate judges Ann Williams and Stanley Marcus, Bush-appointed Fifth Circuit judge Edward Prado, and Arlen Specter, the then Republican senator from Pennsylvania. ^ Bazyler, Michael J.; Everitt, Kearston G. "Holocaust Restitution Litigation in the United States: An Update" (PDF) . International Civil Liberties Report. p. 1''2. Archived from the original (PDF) on December 14, 2004. , citing In re: Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A. Holocaust Ins. Litig., 2004 WL 2311298 at *5 (S.D.N.Y. October 14, 2004). ^ Liptak, Adam (September 23, 2007). "Nuance and Resolve in Rulings by Attorney General Nominee". The New York Times . Retrieved September 23, 2007 . ^ "Former Southern District Chief Judge Michael B. Mukasey Rejoins Patterson Belknap" (Press release). Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler. September 12, 2006. Archived from the original on September 27, 2007 . Retrieved September 15, 2007 . ^ "Meet the Press transcript for March 18, 2007". MSNBC. March 18, 2007 . Retrieved September 15, 2007 . Schumer also suggested former Justice Department officials Larry Thompson and James Comey. ^ "Michael Mukasey's Federal Campaign Contribution Report". Newsmeat.com. Archived from the original on October 4, 2007. ^ "Giuliani Legal Team". Chicago Tribune. September 6, 2007. Archived from the original on December 1, 2007 . Retrieved September 16, 2007 . ^ a b Mukasey, Michael B. (May 10, 2004). "The Spirit of Liberty". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on August 8, 2004 . Retrieved November 6, 2018 . ^ Mukasey, Michael (August 22, 2007). "Jose Padilla Makes Bad Law". Wall Street Journal . Retrieved September 15, 2007 . ^ President Bush Announces Judge Michael Mukasey as Nominee for Attorney General, White House press release, dated September 17, 2007. Accessed September 18, 2007. ^ "White House Asks For Quick Mukasey Confirmation". CBS News. September 21, 2007 . Retrieved December 12, 2015 . ^ Associated Press (September 21, 2007). "Nominee promises tight ship at Justice: Michael Mukasey said he'd fire anyone who talked without his okay, a senator says". Saint Petersburg Times . Retrieved December 12, 2015 . ^ Jordan, Sarah Jakes (September 20, 2007). "Senator Praises Mukasey's Independence". 'Washington Post . (Associated Press). Archived from the original on November 3, 2012 . Retrieved September 23, 2007 . ^ Leahy, Patrick, and nine other Senators. Letter to Mukasey, Oct 23, 2007. Senate Committee on the Judiciary. Retrieved October 31, 2007. ^ a b Shane, Scot; David Stout (November 1, 2007). "Bush Moves to Save Mukasey Nomination". The New York Times . Retrieved November 1, 2007 . ^ Blumenthal, Sidney (2007). "The sad decline of Michael Mukasey". Salon.com. Archived from the original on February 6, 2009 . Retrieved November 1, 2007 . ^ "Clarify position on torture, senators urge attorney general nominee". Cable News Network. October 28, 2007 . Retrieved October 30, 2007 . ^ "Sanders to Vote Against Mukasey". The Associated Press. October 22, 2007 . Retrieved October 30, 2007 . [permanent dead link ] ^ David Stout (November 6, 2007). "Nomination of Mukasey Sent to Full Senate". The New York Times . Retrieved November 6, 2007 . ^ Kellman, Laurie (November 9, 2007). "Mukasey confirmed as attorney general". 'Washington Post . (Associated Press) . Retrieved November 11, 2007 . ^ Courant.com [permanent dead link ] ^ Jordan, Lara Jakes (November 9, 2007). "Mukasey Sworn in As Attorney General". Forbes . Retrieved November 10, 2007 . [dead link ] ^ For primary source documents, see Velvet Revolution website. For commentary, see David Swanson, "UPDATE: Disbarring 12 Torture Lawyers: Broad Coalition Of Groups Files Disciplinary Complaints Against Twelve Bush Administration Lawyers Who Advocated Torture Of Detainee", May 18, 2009 at Daily Kos blog and Dna Milbank, "Etch-a-Sketch: Punishing Bush Officials", The Washington Post op-ed, May 18, 2009, found at Washington Post website. Accessed May 18, 2009. ^ Scott Shane, "Advocacy Groups Seek Disbarment of Ex-Bush Administration Lawyers", The New York Times, May 18, 2009, found at NY Times website. Accessed May 18, 2009. ^ Nedra Pickler, "Complaint seeks disbarment of Bush administration lawyers linked to torture memos", AP (Associated Press), May 18, 2009, Star Trubune website Archived May 25, 2009, at the Wayback Machine. Accessed May 18, 2009. ^ Wayne Barrett, "'No Skeletons in My Closet!': Oh yeah? How Michael Mukasey and Bernie Kerik are haunting Rudy's run" Archived November 2, 2007, at the Wayback Machine, "Village Voice", October 30, 2007 ^ William K. Rashbaum, "White House says Mukasey would skip Giuliani Issues", The New York Times, ^ William K. Rashbaum, "White House says Mukasey would skip Giuliani Issues", The New York Times ^ "Mukasey Papers Cite Giuliani Friendship". washingtonpost.com. ^ Celona, Larry; Dan Manigan (October 22, 2007). "Giuliani's Bernard Kerik Shield: Pal Keeps Eye on Ex-NYPD Boss' Probe". New York Post Exclusive . Retrieved November 4, 2007 . ^ Frieden, Terry. Mukasey wants police support to prevent prisoner releases. CNN. February 26, 2008 ^ Piper, Bill. Attorney General "Ignoring Reality" of Draconian Crack Laws. Huffington Post, February 25, 2008 ^ "Mukasey: Don't Execute 9/11 Accused". Associated Press. March 14, 2008. Archived from the original on April 18, 2008 . Retrieved April 11, 2008 . ^ Video on YouTube ^ Opsahl, Kurt (April 11, 2008). "Mukasey's Missed Call". Electronic Frontier Foundation . Retrieved November 6, 2018 . ^ Greenwald, Glenn (April 3, 2008). "Why doesn't the 9/11 Commission know about Mukasey's 9/11 story?". Salon.com . Retrieved November 6, 2018 . ^ Greenwald, Glenn (April 4, 2008). "The DOJ comments on the Mukasey controversy". Salon.com . Retrieved November 6, 2018 . ^ Bob Egleko (April 11, 2008). "Mukasey asked to explain terror call remarks". San Francisco Chronicle . Retrieved April 11, 2008 . ^ Bob Egleko (April 15, 2008). "Democrats blast Mukasey for 9/11 call remarks". San Francisco Chronicle . Retrieved April 16, 2008 . ^ "Mukasey: No prosecutions in Justice hiring scandal". rawstory.com. Associated Press. August 12, 2008. Archived from the original on August 18, 2008 . Retrieved August 13, 2008 . ^ "Mukasey: Waterboarding is not torture". YouTube. December 11, 2014. ^ "At Senate Hearing, Attorney General Michael Mukasey Refuses to Say if Waterboarding is Torture, Illegal". Democracy Now!. ^ "McCain schools Trump". Hullabaloo. February 8, 2016. ^ "Trump, Cohen and Attorney-Client Privilege". Wall Street Journal. April 11, 2018. External links [ edit ] Michael B. Mukasey at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.Appearances on C-SPAN"Michael B. Mukasey". Debevoise & Plimpton. Questionnaire for Michael B. Mukasey, Attorney General NomineeBalancing Democracy, Justice, and Security November 2009 speech at the American University of Paris (with video)
Despicable Sex Cult Had Close Ties to Hillary Clinton and Other Top Democrats - Deep State Journal
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 22:38
Trial of the cult's leader reveals some shocking ties to the Democrat party elite.
And the cult's crimes from sex trafficking to child pornography threaten to destroy the Democrat Party.
Because the despicable sex cult had close ties to Hillary Clinton and other top Democrats.
Keith Raniere, the founder and leader of the notorious NXIVM sex cult has been found guilty on all counts against him.
Included in his crimes was sex trafficking from Mexico and child pornography. The jury at Brooklyn Federal Court reached its verdict after only brief deliberations Wednesday.
Raniere violated young girls from Mexico he brought illegally into the U.S. and imprisoned them on threat of deportation by the cult. He was also convicted of charges stemming from human experiments and Satanism-inspired rituals that took place at the cult.
According to the mountains of evidence exposed by this historic trial there could be repercussions for a number of leading Democrats, including some 2020 presidential contenders.
''The defendant tapped into a never-ending flow of women and money,'' the prosecution said of Raniere after his conviction, calling him a ''crime boss with no limits and no checks on his power.''
In addition to the shocking evidence of sexual depravity, kidnapping, torture and worse, the records presented at trial also show NXIVM's involvement with major players in the Democrat party.
Evidence presented shows how the NXIVM sex cult illegally raised money for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, how it counted Clinton friend Richard Mays and Kirsten Gillibrand's stepmother as active members of the cult and Gillibrand's father as an employee.
And in breathtaking fashion it was proven that the cult's ''ally'' Chuck Schumer was compromised because the cult possessed all of his financial records.
The NXIVM sex cult had deep opposition research files on its political enemies, including Roger Stone, according to documents from the trial.
Documents from the NXIVM archives are also shedding light on how the sex cult stored data on top politicians including Chuck Schumer '-- whom the cult viewed as a ''friendly'' ally, and Hillary Clinton.
The Albany Times-Union wrote: ''A former close confidant of Keith Raniere, founder of the NXIVM corporation, claims top officials in the secretive organization used a Canadian investigative firm or other means to sift the financial records of six federal judges and U.S. Sen. Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., according to court records.
The former NXIVM insider, Kristin M. Keeffe, said that Seagrams heiress Clare W. Bronfman, who oversees NXIVM's operations, ordered the financial probes at the direction of Raniere.
The six judges whose financial records Keeffe alleges were analyzed have all presided over cases involving NXIVM or its perceived adversaries and critics.''
Keeffe left NXIVM in February 2014 and turned over a treasure trove of documents about NXIVM and is in hiding, so the NXIVM cult had information on Schumer.
In addition to Schumer and Clinton, the sex cult had deep ties with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.
The Democrat Senator and presidential candidate's family ties to the NXIVM sex cult are raising serious questions about her relationship with the cult that she once denied knowing about.
Gillibrand's father and stepmother, who are actually also second cousins, were both heavily involved in the cult in the period shortly before they got married, according to both eyewitness accounts, and court documents proving that Gillibrand's father Doug Rutnik was employed by NXIVM.
Gillibrand's father served as a broker between NXIVM cult leader Keith Raniere '-- whose initials were branded on his female sex slaves '-- and the then-New York attorney general to resolve Raniere's financial problems with the state.
Also, Gillibrand's stepmother Gwenn Belcourt got ''hooked'' on the cult as did Bill Clinton's close friend Richard Mays. Nancy Salzman, the NXIVM president who was also convicted acted as a personal ''guru'' for Gillibrand's stepmother.
There is more to come on this shocking story, involving a large number of Democrat Party leaders and donors, Hollywood, and some storied American families.
We will keep you posted as more comes out.
Proof That the Clintons Are Tied to Epstein, Cartels but the Fix Is In -No Justice for the Victims - SGT Report
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 22:34
by Dave Hodges, The Common Sense Show:
Justice will not be done when it comes to obtaining retribution for the children sexually abused, with some being murdered in hunting games played out by the elite on Epstein's so-called ''Orgy Island''. We know and can prove that the Clinton Foundation is tied to Epstein at the operational level. A case involving a Clinton Foundation associate surfaced south of Tucson in the summer of 2018. The authorities, despite overwhelming evidence, were able to bury the case. The sex trafficking camp they found at the Tucson site was linked to Soros, Rothschild, Clintons and the former President of Mexico. the Tucson site was a cartel operation operating on American soil.
We have new information that ties the Epstein sex trafficking empire into the Tucson case and Hollywood's NXIVM. My research makes it clear that Epstein's empire was part of a bigger trafficking operation that was global and was associated with household names in the Democratic Party, business and industry, banking (eg HSBC), and globalists yet to be named. As I am discovering, the empire of Child Sex Trafficking is huge and spans the entire globe and goes right to the tops of governments and the so-called elite.
The Tucson Tie to the Global Sex TraffickingA very telling case surfaced in Tucson a year ago which demonstrates how high up the sex trafficking operations and subsequent cover-up goes. Previous news reports noted that Veterans on Patrol, in 2018, a local advocacy group in the Tucson region that seeks out homeless veterans in washes and desert areas, found a strange encampment and concluded that it was being utilized by sex traffickers to exploit children.
The group posted photos and video online featuring straps attached to trees that they claimed were ''restraints'' used to assault children sexually. In addition, the group noted that a small hastily-made shelter at the camp looked as though children had been held there against their will. ''Dear Cartel: You have entered our backyard & harmed our children. We are coming 4 U,'' says a note taped by members of the group to a post at the campsite. SGT Report noted that a video posted by former Navy SEAL Craig Sawyer on Twitter purports to show a ''holding cell'' and other signs that children were being sexually exploited at the camp. #Anon on 4Chan noted that veteran group investigators believe that the camp was being operated by four-to-six men ''at any given time.'' ''A cartel member responsible for the camp showed themselves earlier and attempted to scare us off the property despite having no legal right to do so,'' #Anon posted. ''Needless to say, it didn't work. After it became clear to him how screwed he was, he disappeared on horseback into the Tohono O'odham [Native American] reservation.'' The post, which was featured by SGT Report, went on to note that local media was treating the find as though it were nothing.
Nothing? Craig ''Sawman'' Sawyer, a former U.S. Navy SEAL sniper and founder of Vets 4 Child Rescue, investigated the scene himself and said the media's denial of what likely took place at the camp regarding children is baffling. He noted that he and others found the bizarre tree restraints, an underground septic tank '-- a perfect place to keep children hidden from which they could not escape '-- dozens of boxes of hair dye, and sex lubricant to be indicative of more than just a homeless camp. ''It could have been a homeless camp, where the people were just weird or mentally ill. But there are a group of trees that look like rape trees,'' Sawyer previously told The Hagmann Report. ''Rape trees are essentially what the drug traffickers, coyotes, tend to want to use to rape people. They tie them to it and take their undergarments and hang them up on the trees as some sort of trophy. We found in this camp a group of trees with all manner of fire hoses nailed to them and loops and different straps and different types of rope.''
As The Gateway Pundit reported, ''The land on which the bunker was found is owned by Cemex Construction Materials South, LLLC., a multinational building materials company in Mexico and partner of the Clinton Global Initiative.
From: VOP Alpha Co '' '...The following contains a trace of Cemex's associations and history. The Mayor Tucson is implicated by name (ie Mayor Rothschild, no, I am not kidding). The Illuminati is implicated. The Federal Government is implicated and their has been at least one Federal investigation into Cemex, according to Reuters.The land in question is owned by Cemex and they are a partner of the Clinton Global Initiative. Cemex is linked to Haiti through the Clinton Foundation along with the theft of $2 billion of UN relief aid intended for Haiti. The report states that Cemex is a $100 million donor to the Clinton Foundation (Editor's Note: One has to wonder if this payment was a pay for play? Read on because this speculation will make more sense). Cemex is also owned by Bronfman-Rothschilds. That would central banking heads of state so to speak. Sara Bronfman's husband became the head of Libya-SA trade initiative after the Clinton/Obama led overthrow of Ghadaffi. So the people tied to sex trafficking are some of the most powerful people on the planet. Interestingly, Cemex is under a US DOJ investigation according to a 2018 Reuters article.
The investigation comes after the company said in December that the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) had asked it for information to determine whether it violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in the construction of a new plant in Colombia. Editor's Note: It is not clear what they are under investigation for. It is not clear what this ''plant'' in Colombia is all about. Is it tied to child-sex-trafficking? That question cannot be answered at this time because there is a media blackout on this investigation except for a brief update on May 18th by the Wall Street Journal. However, the articles did not reveal anything significant related to the specific crimes.
Emillano Salinas is the son of the former President of Mexico. Salinas is an ex-member of NXIVM, the nasty Hollywood cartel with sex trafficking ties. Salinas is tied to CEMEX as well. Don't be surprised because every Mexican President is on the payroll of the cartels. You may recall that former Smallville actress Allison Mack who had self-admitted involvement in the controversial NXIVM organization. Salinas worked for Lazard Investments. Lazard Investments is connected to George Soros. Jonathan Rothschild is the Mayor of Tucson. I have known for years that the Pima County Sheriff is controlled by the Rothschild-Greenberg cartel.
The Clinton ties become obvious as one delves into the details. As we know that CEMEX paid the Clintons $100 million, we can consider this to be a middle man fee paid to the Clinton Initiative, aka the right to do business, which is a common cartel practice in their version of pay to play. On the other side of CEMEX-Clinton association is Epstein. NXIVM tied into this central hub of sex trafficking as a result. Some of my sources have indicated that this is the largest business on the planet. It is bigger than nuclear arms production, drug sales and gun running. HSBC banks launders the money for these groups as revealed on the CSS by John Cruz, former HSBC Vice President.
The names associated with this unholy operation are beginning to leak out as evidenced by excerpts from the following article:
QUOTE: the cult's ''ally'' Chuck Schumer was compromised because the cult possessed all of his financial records.
QUOTE: In addition to Schumer and Clinton, the sex cult had deep ties with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.
QUOTE: There is more to come on this shocking story, involving a large number of Democrat Party leaders and donors, Hollywood, and some storied American families.
Trial of the cult's leader reveals some shocking ties to the Democrat party elite. And the cult's crimes from sex trafficking to child pornography threaten to destroy the Democrat Party because the despicable sex cult had close ties to Hillary Clinton and other top Democrats. Keith Raniere, the founder and leader of the notorious NXIVM sex cult has been found guilty on all counts against him.Included in his crimes was sex trafficking from Mexico and child pornography. The jury at Brooklyn Federal Court reached its verdict after only brief deliberations Wednesday.
Raniere violated young girls from Mexico he brought illegally into the U.S. and imprisoned them on threat of deportation by the cult. He was also convicted of charges stemming from human experiments and Satanism-inspired rituals that took place at the cult. According to the mountains of evidence exposed by this historic trial there could be repercussions for a number of leading Democrats, including some 2020 presidential contenders.
''The defendant tapped into a never-ending flow of women and money,'' the prosecution said of Raniere after his conviction, calling him a ''crime boss with no limits and no checks on his power.'' In addition to the shocking evidence of sexual depravity, kidnapping, torture and worse, the records presented at trial also show NXIVM's involvement with major players in the Democrat party.
Evidence presented shows how the NXIVM sex cult illegally raised money for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, how it counted Clinton friend Richard Mays and Kirsten Gillibrand's stepmother as active members of the cult and Gillibrand's father as an employee. And in breathtaking fashion it was proven that the cult's ''ally'' Chuck Schumer was compromised because the cult possessed all of his financial records.
The NXIVM sex cult had deep opposition research files on its political enemies, including Roger Stone, according to documents from the trial. Documents from the NXIVM archives are also shedding light on how the sex cult stored data on top politicians including Chuck Schumer '-- whom the cult viewed as a ''friendly'' ally, and Hillary Clinton (Editor's Note: This is only part of what came in the NXIVM trial)'...
Pausing to Connect the DotsWe can follow the logical chain of command from the evidence presented so far:
Rothschild family interests-NXVIM-CEMEX- Mexican Presidents-Cartels- HSBC Bank
On a parallel leg we see the following:
Rothschild interests-NXVIM-Clinton Foundation-American and Mexican politicians paid to look the other way-HSBC
From what I have found, I am certain that these two legs of compromising a criminal enterprise is only a small part of this overall criminal family tree. For example, I am certain that I will stumble upon a prominent UN connection as they are deeply embedded into the new Mexican National Guard. I am convinced that one of the reasons that the Mexican National Guard was created was to bury the criminal associations of the Federal Police with the aforementioned groups and individuals. In other words, this new force helps to bury evidence from the past law enforcement activities of the Mexican government.
Read More @ TheCommonSenseShow.com
Kamala Harris tries to 'rewrite history' with False claim on San Francisco ICE policy | PolitiFact California
Mon, 08 Jul 2019 03:29
Presidential candidate and U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., has made protecting undocumented youth a top priority during her time in the Senate.
She's been a vocal supporter, for example, of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which gives temporary protections to more than 700,000 young undocumented immigrants, or Dreamers, brought to the country as children.
But on the campaign trail in Iowa this past weekend, Harris made some questionable statements about a 2008 San Francisco policy that reported undocumented youth to federal immigration officials upon their arrest by local police. Harris, San Francisco's District Attorney at the time, supported the policy, which didn't take into account whether the youth were actually found guilty of a crime.
Speaking on an Iowa politics podcast on Sunday, Harris said handing over undocumented youth to U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement, or ICE, was "an unintended consequence" of the policy.
Here's the exchange:
Question: "Could you kind of give us some insight on how, from that time, when for whatever reason you were supporting this policy that was essentially handing over undocumented people to ICE before they had been convicted to now -- kind of what's changed on that and how you came to those changes?"
Harris' response: "That ended up being an unintended consequence of the policy and I did not support that consequence of that policy. And that policy I believe has since changed because it was not the intended purpose of that policy."
We decided to fact-check her claim that turning over undocumented youth to ICE was "an unintended consequence" of this strategy.
Background on San Francisco policy
Before 2008, San Francisco's policy was to not report arrested undocumented youth to ICE at all, as part of its sanctuary city protections.
Then Mayor and current California Gov. Gavin Newsom changed that approach in 2008 after a 21-year-old undocumented man was arrested for killing three members of a family in San Francisco. The man had been arrested before, at age 17, and convicted of attempted robbery and assault but was not reported to federal immigration authorities.
Former San Francisco County Supervisor David Campos strongly opposed the policy change. Asked about Harris' statement, he said "it just doesn't fly."
"With all due respect to Sen. Harris, who has been a friend, I don't understand how she can say that," said Campos, who led the board's effort to reverse the policy, and is now chairperson of the San Francisco Democratic Party.
"Turning over young people and children who were accused of a crime that later turned out they did not commit was not an unintended consequence of what was going on. It was precisely what was going on and what we were trying to avoid," Campos said. "You can't rewrite history."
The Board of Supervisors voted to overturn Newsom's policy in October 2009 and overrode his veto the next month, according to a Mercury-News article.
But that wasn't the end of the controversy. Newsom refused to enforce the reversal.
"His administration cited a memo from City Attorney Dennis Herrera, which argued that the supervisors' reform would be "likely to result in a federal legal challenge," potentially to the sanctuary city law as a whole '-- although it also noted that "the law in this area is not well developed," the paper reported.
Harris expressed the same concerns in a speech at Stanford University in 2009, as cited in a CNN.com article that reviewed Harris' support for the policy.
Harris explained her position this way:
"There was then an initiative that was written by the board of supervisors that was passed and there was opposition to that but it did pass," Harris said in the 2009 speech. "And so we're gonna have to wait to see how the courts interpret what it means. From my perspective, I think that it would be in conflict with federal law, and we have to follow the law. We have to follow that law. You may not agree with it, but you know, that's why we have a process where you can challenge laws. And it is the law."
Newsom's policy was eventually changed by his successor in the mayor's office, Ed Lee, who ordered in May 2011 that most juveniles with family ties to the Bay Area not be reported to ICE, the Mercury-News added.
It "was the purpose of this troubling policy"
Angela Chan, a San Francisco immigration attorney who opposed the mayor's policy, told PolitiFact California this week in an email that referring youth to ICE "wasn't an unintended consequence, it was the purpose of this troubling policy."
Chan is policy director at Advancing Justice Asian Law Caucus. She represented a family whose 13-year-old son was referred to ICE under Newsom's strategy.
The mayor's approach "was a pretty drastic change," she told us last year, when we reported on the policy during the gubernatorial campaign. "Prior to that point, the focus was on rehabilitation and on the appropriate placement of the child and also on reunification with the family."
Last summer, then-Republican gubernatorial candidate John Cox claimed Newsom "separated families and deported children before he was against it," comparing what Newsom did to the the Trump administration's separation of migrant children from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border. We found Cox was partially correct but that his statement also unfairly conflated Newsom's policy with Trump's, despite some stark differences in detail and circumstance.
Even so, some undocumented youth were deported due to Newsom's policy.
Chan said "dozens" of juveniles between the ages of 12 and 18 were reported to ICE each month, both on felony and misdemeanor charges and "some kids were actually deported as a result of that policy."
She said her legal efforts blocked the deportation of a 13-year-old she represented who was nearly deported for punching a classmate and stealing 46 cents.
Harris didn't lead the charge on the new strategy, Chan added, but was "a tacit supporter." Harris has subsequently said the policy "could have been applied more fairly."
Asked about the senator's claim on the podcast, her campaign spokesman issued a written statement:
"As Governor Newsom has said, his initial policy was intended to protect the sanctuary status of San Francisco, which Senator Harris has always supported and defended. In Iowa, Senator Harris was clearly talking about how she believes the policy shouldn't have been done the way it was done."
We asked Campos and Chan about that response. Campos said the claim that Newsom's policy was necessary to protect the city's sanctuary status "doesn't pass the straight-face test." Chan, who listened to the podcast, said San Francisco's sanctuary status, which is decided by city leaders, was never in jeopardy.
"That makes no sense whatsoever," she said of the campaign's explanation.
An in-depth look at Harris' statement by CNN.com this week also found the senator "mischaracterized" the policy, finding multiple inaccuracies.
Our rating
Sen. Kamala Harris claimed on a recent podcast that turning over arrested undocumented youth to immigration officials was "an unintended consequence" of a 2008 San Francisco policy she supported.
That, in fact, was the very purpose of the policy. It was specifically designed by then San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom to allow local police to report arrested undocumented youth to ICE, according to news reports and those who opposed the policy. Previously, the city did not refer arrested undocumented youth to ICE.
Harris also stated she "did not support that consequence of the policy," which is also dubious given past news articles that cite her support for Newsom's change.
Additionally, Harris said the policy was only changed because of an "unintended consequence." That's also wrong. Newsom resisted changing it, and it was only reformed after a new mayor was elected.
On the podcast, Harris said she feels strongly that undocumented residents should be protected by and able to trust local law enforcement "without having to worry about" whether they will be deported.
That sentiment, however, doesn't take away from her mischaracterization of the goal and fraught history of the 2008 policy she supported.
We rate Harris' claim False.
FALSE '' The statement is not accurate.
Click here for more on the six PolitiFact ratings and how we select facts to check.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly said San Francisco's policy, before Newsom's change in 2008, was to refer arrested undocumented youth to ICE only after a criminal conviction. In fact, before the change, the city's policy was to not refer undocumented youth to ICE at all.
Tom Steyer 2020 Presidential Run Looks Closer - The Atlantic
Mon, 08 Jul 2019 11:21
Similarly, Steyer had been expected to announce a California Senate run in 2016 and a gubernatorial run in 2018. He had even recorded a commercial for the latter run before pulling the plug. (Multiple people on his staff learned that he was not running then from public reports.)
The 2020 race has remained alluring, though, especially with accepting that there won't be an open Democratic race for California governor until 2026, and that he's unlikely to be the top pick for a California Senate seat. At 62 years old, Steyer knows that the time for him to run is now or never, people who've spoken to him tell me.
Heather Hargreaves, the executive director of NextGen America and a central player in Steyer's campaign planning, declined to comment on his plans and on the meeting in which Steyer made the announcement to staff. ''I can't comment right now,'' she told me Sunday night when reached by text.
Read: How Tom Steyer built the biggest political machine you've never heard of
Steyer told people in January that part of the reason why he wasn't running for president was because he was satisfied with the economic message that Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts presented. Long focused on environmental advocacy, he also was excited by Washington Governor Jay Inslee's focus on climate change as the priority issue of his campaign. However, people who've spoken to Steyer told me that while he still speaks fondly of Warren, he's been frustrated that Inslee's campaign hasn't taken off more. (Inslee has yet to break 1 percent in the polls.) According to these people, Steyer has talked about seeing an opening to challenge Trump on the economy, and take him on as a successful businessman who's an actual self-made man, and who believes in progressive economics.
Trump ''has no strategy. He has an attitude: belligerence. It's no surprise that he is failing,'' Steyer tweeted on Sunday evening, sharing a New York Times op-ed about Trump's trade war with China.
According to people who've spoken with him, Steyer has also been disappointed that House Democrats haven't moved more quickly in holding impeachment hearings. He's been leading and pumping millions of dollars into Need to Impeach and NextGen America, in addition to the Democratic campaign group For Our Future. (His campaign would be separate from those groups while he invests in his 2020 run.) And even after donating millions to those organizations, Steyer has more than enough in his own fortune to outspend the Democratic field so far.
Read: Tom Steyer wants the 2020 Democrats supporting impeachment
Steyer has never seemed settled on his decision to skip the presidential race. When we sat down at the end of May to talk about impeachment, I asked him if he regretted not running, and he told me, ''I said at the time I think [Need to Impeach] is the most consequential thing I can do. We'll see. This is a fast-moving thing. Stuff happened today. Stuff happened yesterday. Stuff happened the day before.''
Is that just the usual political answer'--not quite closing the door, but not being serious about running? I asked him. ''I don't know the difference between those two things,'' he replied.
According to people I've spoken with, he seems to have sorted out the difference in the last few days.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.
Edward-Isaac Dovere is a staff writer at
The Atlantic.
Joe Biden earned $15.6 million in the two years after leaving the vice presidency - The Washington Post
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 11:49
Joe Biden on Tuesday reported earning $15.6 million in family income over the past two years, making him the highest earner among the top competitors for the Democratic presidential nomination.
The vast majority of the former vice president's income '-- which totaled $11 million in 2017 and $4.6 million in 2018 '-- came from book payments and speaking fees, according to newly released tax returns and financial disclosure forms required of federal office-seekers.
All told, the Bidens made nearly five times more in the past two years than the next- highest earner, Sen. Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.), who with her husband earned $3.3 million. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) each took in about $1.7 million in family income.
The amount of wealth '-- with Biden at the top '-- comes amid a campaign that features a strong current of economic populism, with Sanders and Warren in particular making a case that the economy is rigged in favor of the rich.
The tax returns and financial disclosure statements Biden released Tuesday provided the first picture of the wealth he has accumulated since leaving a 44-year career in government.
A regular theme of his presidential campaign has been the fact that he was often the poorest member of the U.S. Senate during his tenure there, as determined by disclosure forms. For at least a decade, Biden repeatedly has described himself as ''Middle Class Joe.''
His supporters argue that his hardscrabble upbringing in a middle class home in Scranton, Pa., still influences how he sees himself.
But since leaving office, he has benefited from an explosion of wealth. He gave 47 speeches, according to the new filings, with fees as high as $234,000. His speaking fees and book payments amounted to $10 million in 2017 and $3.2 million in 2018.
Biden was also a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, where he was paid $371,159 in 2017 and $405,368 in 2018.
Jill Biden, his wife, delivered 18 speeches that were noted in the financial disclosure forms, for which she earned more than $700,000. She also received a salary of more than $90,000 annually for her work as a professor at Northern Virginia Community College.
The Washington Post detailed last month how Biden's standard of living has been enhanced since he left office in January 2017.
He has purchased a $2.7 million, 4,800-square-foot vacation house near the water in Rehoboth Beach, Del., to go along with his primary residence, the nearly 7,000-square-foot lakeside home he built more than two decades ago in Wilmington, Del.
Biden didn't list a mortgage on his vacation home, an indication that he had paid off the $2.7 million residence in full. His 2017 tax returns showed that the couple took in $11,319 in rental income. That stemmed from an arrangement by which the Secret Service continued paying rent for a cottage on the property until his protection ended in mid-2017.
Biden also has been renting a 12,000-square-foot home in McLean, Va., that features five bedrooms and 10 bathrooms, marble fireplaces, a gym and a sauna. Biden's campaign has declined to disclose details about the financial arrangement for the home, which is owned by Mark Ein, a well-connected, politically active donor who owns the Washington Kastles tennis team, the Washington City Paper, and Kastle Systems, which handles security systems for commercial office buildings.
Biden's campaign would only say that the former vice president was paying ''substantial monthly rent.'' Zillow, the real estate site, estimates monthly rent for the home to be nearly $20,000.
Because he does not own the home, Biden did not have to disclose details about it in his financial disclosure forms or tax filings.
Biden's previous financial disclosure, filed in 2016 and covering the year 2015, showed assets ranging from $303,000 to $1.115 million. His debts at that time ranged from $780,000 to $1.6 million, largely from a mortgage and a secondary loan on his primary residence.
Biden now has almost no debts listed. The only outstanding debts were loans against the cash value of life insurance policies, which Biden took out in 1983 and were valued at $15,000 to $50,000; and a line of credit, originally co-signed with his sons in 1989 for college expenses, that has been renewed every two years.
Biden's assets have not increased as dramatically as his income. He has few large investments, but lists several bank accounts with significant cash in them. Two hold up to $250,000 and one holds up to $500,000.
Biden's campaign had previously declined to release a list of his paid speeches, or how much he had earned in total.
The Washington Post found at least 65 instances in which Biden gave a speech or appeared at a book event; in at least 10 instances he did not take a fee, although in some of those cases he was reimbursed for travel expenses.
The campaign financial disclosure forms represented the first detailed look at speeches Biden made after leaving the vice presidency. But because the form stretches back only through part of 2017, there are still several months of speeches whose specific payments remain unknown '-- although his overall income was listed in his tax returns. The Post found that during that period he delivered about 20 speeches.
Biden appeared to take care to avoid the kind of backlash that 2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton faced in the party primaries for delivering private speeches to Goldman Sachs and other Wall Street interests. Most of Biden's appearances were in less politically sensitive venues.
With the release on Tuesday, Biden has now made public 21 years of his tax returns, more than any other candidate. President Trump has yet to release any of his tax returns despite an earlier promise to do so.
A review of Biden's previous tax returns showed the couple's adjusted gross income at $215,432 in 1998, the first year for which he has made returns available. His income remained in that neighborhood until 2009, when it increased by about $55,000 annually due to Social Security and pension payments.
By Biden's final years in office, the couple's gross income totaled about $390,000 annually.
The tax returns showed the Bidens often reported few charitable contributions. For the 10 years preceding 2008, they donated an average of $369 annually to charity '-- or 0.1 percent of their adjusted gross income. The total increased when Biden served as vice president, with donations of book proceeds to charity, clothing to Goodwill Industries and other contributions.
In recent years, the tax returns show, the charitable contributions saw an uptick.
The Bidens gave $1 million to charity in 2017 '-- which was 9.1 percent of their taxable income '-- and $276,000 in 2018, or 6 percent of their income.
CNN Announces Rules for Next Round of Debates July 30th, 31st'... | The Last Refuge
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 11:40
The next round of Democrat primary debates are scheduled for July 30th and 31st, hosted by fake news CNN. Narrative engineers Dana Bash, Don Lemon and Jake Tapper will hold DNC responsibility for elevating candidate Kamala Harris, and once again undermining Crazy Bernie; sans Donna Brazille and those ''damn emails'' 2019.
(Via CNN) The window to determine debate eligibility closes on July 16, and candidates will be informed the next day if they will be invited to participate in Detroit. On July 18, CNN will air a live draw to determine the specific candidate lineups for each debate night.
The campaign representatives also learned on Tuesday that candidates will be given 60 seconds to respond to a moderator-directed question, and 30 seconds for responses and rebuttals. In addition, the campaign representatives were told:
Colored lights will be used to help the candidates manage their remaining response times: 15 seconds = yellow; 5 seconds = flashing red; no time remaining = solid red.A candidate attacked by name by another candidate will be given 30 seconds to respond.There will be no show of hands or one-word, down-the-line questions.A candidate who consistently interrupts will have his or her time reduced.Questions posed by the moderators will appear on the bottom of the screen for television viewers.(LINK)
Josh Kushner Was at Women's March in D.C. - Ivanka Trump's Brother in Law Protests Trump Election
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 00:57
Getty Images
Today's Women's March on Washington, D.C. attracted hundreds of thousands protesters, and apparently Joshua Kushner, the younger brother of Ivanka Trump's husband'--and President Donald Trump's senior adviser'--Jared Kushner, was among them. Washingtonian editor Jessica Sidman photographed him:
Josh and Jared are close, but Josh identifies as a lifelong Democrat, as his rep told Esquire last year. Josh's longtime girlfriend Karlie Kloss also suggested in her election day Instagram that she voted for Hillary Clinton.
Whether Jared or the Trumps knew about Josh's involvement in the march isn't clear, but it might make the entire thing much harder for our new President to completely dismiss.
Alyssa Bailey News and Strategy Editor Alyssa Bailey is the news and strategy editor at ELLE.com, where she oversees coverage of celebrities and royals (particularly Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton).Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Stripe embroiled in investigation into Donald Trump's inauguration - Business Insider
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 00:57
US President Donald Trump's inaugural committee got hit with a subpoena by federal prosecutors, according to The New York Times.Investigators are demanding that the committee hand over documentation pertaining to Trump's lavish swearing-in ceremony.Mentioned in the subpoena is Stripe, a buzzy Silicon Valley online payment company, worth $20 billion.One of Stripe's notable investors is VC Thrive Capital, the founder and managing partner of which is Josh Kushner, brother to the president's son-in-law Jared Kushner. Stripe, a Silicon Valley online payment company which in September hit a massive $20 billion valuation, has become embroiled in an investigation into US President Donald Trump's inaugural committee, The New York Times reports.
Citing two people familiar with the inquiry, the Times said federal prosecutors issued a subpoena demanding that officials on the inaugural committee '-- which organised Trump's inauguration ceremony '-- hand over documents about donors, finances, and activities.
They also requested all documents linked to contractors and vendors connected to the inauguration. $107 million was raised for Trump's inauguration, an unusually high amount which raised eyebrows at the time.
Read more: How Trump's inaugural committee spent the record $107 million worth of donations to celebrate his election
Accoring to the Times, the subpoena specifically asks for documentation on Stripe, which designed technology to help process credit card transactions.
Although it's not immediately clear what exactly Stripe's involvement was, one of its notable investors is Thrive Capital, the VC firm founded by Josh Kusher, brother to Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner.
Thrive Capital, which sunk $30 million into Stripe in 2014, has also backed big players including Spotify, Twitch, and Instagram. Josh Kushner is not named in the subpoena and his spokesman declined to comment to the Times.
Stripe's rise has been meteoric, it managed to more than double its valuation in two years. It originally had a reputation for working mostly with startups, but as it's grown in size, so have its clients.
A spokesman for Stripe told Business Insider:
"Stripe builds the economic infrastructure that millions of businesses and organizations around the world use to accept payments and donations online. Advanced tooling gives us end-to-end visibility into transaction flows, and helps us spot financial crimes from money laundering to terrorist financing and corruption. We receive hundreds of subpoenas and other law enforcement requests in the normal course of business, as do other infrastructure companies of our scale."
Major GOP tech player downsizes - POLITICO
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 00:39
Under the reorganization plan, one of the firm's co-founders will be launching a new stand-alone company with venture capital funding that offers up much of Targeted Victory's original digital ad technology services. | Getty
Targeted Victory's co-founders splitting company into two.
The biggest player in Republican digital politics '-- shoved to the sidelines by Donald Trump's presidential campaign '-- is downsizing in the wake of the billionaire's surprise White House win.
Targeted Victory, which rose out of the ashes of Mitt Romney's 2012 presidential campaign to employ more than 100 people and become the GOP's go-to technology consultant firm, will be splitting into two separate companies in January. An undisclosed number of staff are being laid off as part of the transition for a firm that's coming to grips with the reality of doing business in a Trump-led world.
Story Continued Below
Under the reorganization plan, Michael Beach, one of the firm's co-founders, will be launching a new stand-alone company with venture capital funding that offers up much of Targeted Victory's original digital ad technology services. It will take on political clients but also will look for revenue from the movie, automobile, home services, energy and education industries.
Beech's long-time partner, Romney 2012 digital director Zac Moffatt, will continue to run Targeted Victory under the same name, largely focusing on political consulting, digital marketing, fundraising and media planning, he told POLITICO. He plans to hire new staff.
Moffatt explained the shift as part of the usual churn that happens after every four-year presidential political cycle. He said Beech's new firm, focusing on digital ad technology, would be able to draw investors and grow quicker without Targeted Victory's client demands.
But Republican digital staffers familiar with Targeted Victory said the company had to make the changes for other reasons too, namely the new dynamics in GOP consultant politics. ''They're probably not going to get the reelect. So what are your revenue assumptions? What's your burn rate? These are business decisions,'' explained a senior Republican digital staffer.
Added another GOP aide: ''They needed to wipe the slate clean.''
During the 2016 campaign, Targeted Victory had a major role in helping Senate Republicans with their reelection efforts. But on the presidential front, it was largely shunned in the general election race against Hillary Clinton as Trump looked elsewhere for technology help. The Republican nominee built an in-house digital and data operation and also heavily relied on staffers from the Republican National Committee.
Trump shunned Targeted Victory in no small part because the firm dedicated significant resources to Ted Cruz's primary campaign. According to campaign expenditure data compiled by CQ MoneyLine, Targeted Victory pulled in nearly $7 million from the Texas Republican's presidential bid. While Targeted Victory did almost a half-million dollars in business with Trump, it was mostly for tangential services and had little to do with the campaign's overall technology effort.
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Official 2020 Trump vs Democrat Poll
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 22:04
1. Who would you rather see fix our Nation's shattered immigration policies? President Trump A MS-13 Loving Democrat2. Who do you trust more to protect America from foreign and domestic threats? President Trump A Corrupt Democrat3. Who would you rather handle our Nation's economy? President Trump A Radical Socialist Democrat4. Who do you believe is more transparent with the American People? President Trump A Lying Democrat5. Who do you trust to NOT raise your taxes? President Trump A High Tax Democrat6. Who do you believe will ALWAYS put America FIRST? President Trump A Sleazy Democrat7. Who do you believe will keep their promises? President Trump A Lyin' Democrat8. Who do you believe will fight for you every day? President Trump A Low Energy Democrat9. Who do you believe is better for America? President Trump A Low IQ Democrat10. Who will you vote for in 2020? President Trump A Radical Socialist Democrat
Juggalo Makeup Blocks Facial Recognition Technology | Consequence of Sound
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 00:26
Last year, Ticketmaster and LiveNation invested in a former military facial recognition company, with the hope that the technology could be used to both strengthen and speed up event entry. If that prospect thoroughly creeps you out, here's a simple life-hack to defeat Big Brother: become a Juggalo. In a revelation that is sure to freak out the FBI, Insane Clown Posse's passionate fan base have unintentionally unlocked the secret to thwarting facial recognition.
It turns out that Juggalos face makeup cannot be accurately read by many facial recognition technologies. Most common programs identify areas of contrast '-- like those around the eyes, nose, and chin '-- and then compare those points to images within a database. The black bands frequently used in Juggalo makeup obscure the mouth and cover the chin, totally redefining a person's key features.
As Twitter use @tahkion points out (via Yahoo!), the black-on-white face paint tricks most facial recognition into incorrectly reading a person's jawline and, presumably, eye area. They broke down the basic results in a pair of tweets:
i made a breakthrough. it turns out juggalo makeup defeats facial recognition successfully. if you want to avoid surveillance, become a juggalo i guess pic.twitter.com/kEh7fUQeXq
'-- TAHKION (@tahkion) July 1, 2018
for anyone wondering why some face changes evade facial recognition and others don't, here's a visualization of how landmarks are placed on a few examples. juggalo makeup is particularly effective as it basically totally redefines what is interpreted as the jawline pic.twitter.com/dFSx5FEGc9
'-- TAHKION (@tahkion) July 1, 2018
Unfortunately, the Faygo-loving clan are not totally safe from all facial recognition technology. While most common software uses areas of light contrast to register identifying features, Apple's Face ID instead uses depth perception. Since makeup only changes the apparent shape of your chin and not the depth of your dimples, Apple's facial recognition renders the Juggalo makeup workaround useless. But at least you'll be able to sneak past LiveNation's facial scanning.
The Purge
New Facebook Policy Normalizes, Approves Death Threats Against Banned "Dangerous" Conservatives - Laura Loomer Official
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 13:54
A draconian update to Facebook's Community Standards effectively allows for detractors of banned Conservative media personalities to issue death threats against those classified by Facebook as ''dangerous individuals''.
According to Facebook's recently-updated policy on ''violence and incitement'', death threats and incitement of violence are banned across the platform, unless your death threat is aimed at someone the social media company has labeled an acceptable ''target''. Yes, really, they used the word target as if it's some sort of bounty'...
Here's Facebook's new policy:
Do not post:
Threats that could lead to death (and other forms of high-severity violence) of any target(s), where threat is defined as any of the following:
Statements of intent to commit high-severity violenceCalls for high-severity violence (unless the target is an organisation or individual covered in the Dangerous Individuals and Organisations Policy)Including content where no target is specified but a symbol represents the target and/or includes a visual of an armament to represent violenceStatements advocating for high-severity violence (unless the target is an organisation or individual covered in the Dangerous Individuals and Organisations Policy)Aspirational or conditional statements to commit high-severity violence (unless the target is an organisation or individual covered in the Dangerous Individuals and Organisations Policy)As Facebook stated on May 2, 2019, their list of ''dangerous individuals'' includes InfoWars host Alex Jones, Paul Joseph Watson, conservative activist Laura Loomer, Louis Farrakhan, and Milo Yiannopoulos.
Following her ban from Facebook and Instagram on May 2, 2019 Loomer became the ''most banned woman in the world''. Loomer was permanently banned by Twitter on November 21, 2019 after posting a tweet in which she referred to Rep. Ilhan Omar as ''anti Jewish'', a statement which is entirely factual.
In January 2019, it was reported by the Wall Street Journal that Loomer's ban came at the instigation of CAIR (Council on American Islamic Relations), a designated Islamic terrorist organization, and was carried out shortly after CAIR's meeting with Twitter and Facebook executives.
Loomer has received numerous death threats from Islamic individuals, and is currently being targeted by CAIR, which is HAMAS, a terrorist organization that kills Jews.
Is Facebook giving the green light to Islamic terrorists on their platform to openly call for Loomer, who is Jewish, to be attacked or murdered?
It certainly looks like it!
It is worth noting that Facebook's update to their Community Standards in which they sanctioned violence against Loomer and other ''dangerous individuals'' occurred hours after Loomer filed her lawsuit against Facebook for defamation.
Facebook is no longer acting above the law. They are acting above the government and are endangering the lives of those they consider political dissidents.
Mr. Watson himself published a piece on Summit News showing his response to a direct death threat from a rather typical representative of the ''Religion of Peace'', stating that he would ''f*cking find and kill'' Mr. Watson. A death threat that is as clear as anything could be. In response to this, Facebook's Community Guidelines found that this had NOT violated their Community Standards. In response, Watson sent out an appropriate Tweet stating that, '' Direct death threats don't violate Facebook's ''community standards,'' yet people are routinely banned for expressing opinions. Incredible.''.
In fact, Watson himself states in his article that an act was passed in the United Kingdom called the Malicious Communications Act 1988 . In that Act, it is stated in Section 1 that: ''Any person who sends to another person'--(a)a letter, electronic communication or article of any description] which conveys'--(i)a message which is indecent or grossly offensive; (ii)a threat; or (iii)information which is false and known or believed to be false by the sender'...'' has committed an offense. Of all the unsettling issues spelled out here, the most unsettling may be the sudden realization that although the U.K has this act, citizens of the UK do not have the wonderful First Amendment to protect their speech. In a perversely ironic twist, fellow Americans who do (or at least should) be protected under the First Amendment now have to worry about death threats with no recourse.
In a heroic response to this disturbingly frequent pattern of Conservative prejudice from Big Tech, Laura Loomer has taken legal action against several of the social media companies that have banned her.
Deplatforming Conservatives is nothing new, but the frequency of widespread Left-wing bias by Big Tech make Loomer's lawsuits against Twitter, CAIR, and Facebook all the more important. Additionally, on Tuesday, Loomer announced a lawsuit against Facebook for defamation. This lawsuit, which calls for $3 BILLION in punitive damages, states that Facebook has defamed Laura by classifying her as a ''dangerous individual''.
A press release published by Loomer's attorney stated:
''This characterization of Ms. Loomer, published widely, is alleged to have severely damaged her reputation, good will and financial well-being, as well as endangered her life and caused her to have to travel with security. As Facebook is reportedly worth over $63 billion the alleged compensatory and punitive damages are sought for at least over $3 billion U.S. dollars, which is 5% of its net worth '-- the standard calculation for punitive damages. The reason punitive damages are assessed by a jury is to punish the offender to dissuade further illegal conduct.''
Loomer's lawsuit could prove to be a landmark case in the ongoing fight for the right to speak and voice one's opinion in the digital public square. The right to voice a dissenting opinion is one that must be protected and hopefully this lawsuit will further that proposition, as well as let big tech know that there will be legal punishments if they maliciously defame users.
There will undoubtedly be a portion of the American populous with perceptions that were molded by tyrants who will dig their feet in and say that there is no such bias occurring. Many of the political left have gone as far as calling social media bias and censorship a ''right wing conspiracy theory''. However, the evidence is undeniable, and as displayed by Facebook's most recent Community Standard update, which literally normalizes death threats against perceived ''dangerous individuals'', Loomer, as well as others who file lawsuits against the social media giants may be on their way to setting legal precedent and may perhaps be the recipient of much deserved legal settlements.
This is a developing story.
Read more about Loomer's lawsuit against Facebook here.
Read more about Loomer's lawsuit against Twitter and CAIR here.
Support Loomer's legal defense fund at FreeLoomer.com.
About Latest Posts Josh CohenJosh Cohen is a freelance writer and Conservative political commentator living in Minnesota. He hosts a blog where he provides insight into a wide array of social and political topics as well as a podcast where he invites thought leaders from all realms of the political and cultural sphere for long-form discussions.
Latest posts by Josh Cohen (see all) Josh Cohen is a freelance writer and Conservative political commentator living in Minnesota. He hosts a blog where he provides insight into a wide array of social and political topics as well as a podcast where he invites thought leaders from all realms of the political and cultural sphere for long-form discussions.
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How Facebook is wooing video creators as a reliable source of revenue - Digiday
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 14:14
Even by Facebook's own admission, it hasn't been a reliable revenue generator for publishers. But Facebook hopes that isn't the case for its burgeoning class of video creators enrolled in its two-year-old YouTube-style revenue-sharing program.
This year Facebook has made a series of updates to its video platform in an effort to become a more reliable platform for video creators. In May, the company updated its video ranking algorithm to prioritize videos from creators and publishers that see more repeat viewership and are able to retain viewers. Now the company is adding a retention analytics section to its Creator Studio dashboard, which creators use to manage their Facebook channels, that reinforces the importance of reliable viewership. Facebook is also adding a monetization analytics section to Creator Studio so that creators can track their estimated revenue for individual videos and their overall channels.
Facebook's goal with these updates is for creators to consider its platform ''more reliable and stable,'' said Kate Orseth, director of media monetization product marketing at Facebook, during an interview at Facebook's Creator Day, a daylong summit that Facebook held in Malibu, California, on July 9 for 150 to 200 creators to meet with Facebook execs, learn about new product features and record videos on makeshift sets.
In addition to the Creator Studio updates, Facebook announced other updates that aim to make its platform more reliable for revenue. Creators can now choose for their videos to only carry pre-roll ads that play before a video and image ads that appear beneath a video while it plays, each of which may be more reliable revenue generators than hoping that a viewer watches a video long enough to sit through a mid-roll ad. Additionally, after introducing a feature last year for viewers to tip gaming creators using the Facebook Stars virtual currency, Facebook is expanding that test to non-gaming creators as well as now allowing creators to create Facebook Groups that are limited to the people that pay a monthly fee to subscribe to the creators' Facebook channels. Orseth described fan subscriptions as ''a more predictable revenue stream for creators.''
However, words like ''predictable,'' ''reliable'' and ''stable'' can be relative terms, especially for independent creators relying on revenue from videos that they post to platforms that are governed by ever-changing algorithms.
Last year one creator with more than 500,000 followers on Facebook was consistently making $10,000 to $60,000 a month. But this year they have seen that revenue dwindle to the point that they are now prioritizing YouTube over Facebook. ''I don't see Facebook as a viable platform to make money anymore,'' this creator said.
Other creators have seen similar fluctuations but drawn different conclusions. For another creator with a Facebook page that has more than two million followers, revenue from Facebook over the past year has fluctuated from $45,000 one month to $22,000 the next month, dropping as low as $10,000 one month and rising as high as more than $60,000 another month. For this creator, fluctuations are part-and-parcel of doing business on any platform. ''If you have a good month and you start thinking, 'Great, I'm going to make this much every month,' that can get you into trouble,'' said this creator.
Another Facebook creator, Jay Shetty, could have found himself in that kind of trouble earlier this year. Despite having more than 24 million followers on Facebook, for a short period of time in early 2019, Shetty's videos' view counts were lower than usual to the point that he thought he would make less money from Facebook than the seven figures in revenue he generated from the platform last year. Then, sometime shortly after that period, he saw the revenue for those same videos pick up.
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While that viewership dip was concerning for Shetty, it was not as much of a concern for him as it would have been for someone who solely relies on Facebook for their income. In addition to posting videos to Facebook, Shetty also manages a speaking career, operates an online coaching business, launched a podcast this year and is writing a book. Besides, Shetty had seen lower revenue from his Facebook videos.
When Shetty began uploading videos to Facebook in 2017, he was not making any money from his content. ''I was about four months away from being broke even though I had 100 million views,'' said Shetty, who joined Facebook's video monetization program in early 2018. He described that period when he was not generating ad revenue from his Facebook videos as ''the best thing to ever happen to me'' because it forced him to find ways to make money on his own and not be reliant on ad revenue.
Another popular Facebook creator, Markian, has adopted the same stance. Despite having more than 3 million followers on Facebook, he is currently trying to diversify to Instagram and YouTube in addition to his Facebook channel. ''I'm always thinking about diversifying because it's out of my control. The CPMs can change. My viewers can change. My views can change,'' said Markian, who said he also saw a performance dip for his videos earlier this year.
While creators like Shetty and Markian are diversifying beyond Facebook, they are not diversifying off of Facebook. If anything, they're going the other way.
Earlier this year Markian hired an editor, writer and producer to work on his Facebook videos and plans to double the size of that team. Already that team has enabled Markian to triple the number of videos he posts to Facebook and his earnings from Facebook have ''probably tripled too,'' he said.
Shetty similarly has a team of videographers and editors that have helped him to increase his output from posting one video a week to three videos a week. ''I'm fully invested in creating content on Facebook, but I know that that creates lots more opportunities,'' Shetty said.
Regulators Eye the Auctions That Decide Which Web Ads You See - WSJ
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 14:52
In that time, hundreds of potential bidders can find out information about you, including your location, birthday, the unique number associated with your mobile device and even whether you have been reading about infectious diseases or right-wing politics.
Privacy regulators in Europe are beginning to scrutinize this process, known as ''real-time bidding,'' through which tens of billions of dollars flow from advertisers annually around the world.
The U.K.'s Information Commissioner's Office, the country's data-protection authority, said real-time ad auctions violate the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation, which took effect last year. Such auctions involve the collection and distribution of sensitive information about users'--including race, sexuality, health status or political leaning'--without their explicit consent, the regulator said in a report last month.
In May, Ireland's Data Protection Commission opened its own investigation into the matter, focusing on Alphabet Inc. 's Google, the largest player in the global ecosystem of digital advertising. The probe will look at whether each step of a real-time advertising transaction is compliant with the GDPR, the commission said.
Privacy activists have filed complaints about real-time ad auctions in at least six other European Union countries, including Belgium, the Netherlands, Poland and Spain. Poland's privacy regulator said it passed a complaint about Google along to Ireland's privacy regulator, which leads EU investigations into Google because that is where the company has its EU headquarters. Belgium's data-protection office confirmed it received a complaint as well. Privacy regulators in the other countries didn't respond to requests for comment.
More than $4 billion in ad dollars flowed from advertisers to publishers in the U.K., France and Germany last year, according to estimates from research firm eMarketer.
In the U.S., the sharing of user data during real-time auctions has received less scrutiny, but it has been a topic of conversation in recent hearings on privacy policy held by the Federal Trade Commission. About $20.7 billion in ad dollars flowed through real-time bidding in the U.S. last year, according to eMarketer.
It isn't clear whether regulators in the U.K. or elsewhere will take action to curb real-time bidding or restrict the flow of user data in any way. But the recent scrutiny marks a significant shift for regulators, who until now have focused more on a handful of cases involving large tech companies.
In the case of real-time bidding, advertisers compete for the opportunity to show ads to a particular user in seconds as a page loads. Ad revenue is parceled out among the ad exchange, the website showing the ad and potentially many more intermediaries. Users' behavioral data isn't being shared with a single company but is rather made available to as many as 2,000 companies to facilitate bidding. Critics say that opens up opportunities for abuse if stronger protections aren't put in place.
The shared data doesn't include the users' names but has unique identifiers that recipients can use to purchase additional data on the subjects, which experts and regulators say is more than enough information to let someone discern their precise identities.
The Information Commissioner's Office in the U.K. didn't single out particular companies but instead called on the entire industry to become compliant within six months. The industry is watching Google and online-ad trade group IAB Europe, which operate the real-time bidding protocols that run the web's ad auctions, industry experts said. Smaller companies and publishers that follow these protocols may also bear responsibility for any violations.
Both Google and IAB Europe have said they would work with the U.K. authority but challenged the report's conclusions that their practices violated the law.
''Some of what's called out in the report is out of scope of our framework,'' IAB Europe CEO Townsend Feehan said. A Google spokeswoman said the company required consent for personalized advertising. ''We don't show personalized ads based on sensitive categories, and we require the same from buyers who use our services,'' the spokeswoman said in a statement.
An issue in the cases will likely be a GDPR legal standard known as a ''legal basis.'' Under the law, processing personal information is illegal unless a company can show it has legal basis'--such as complying with a law, fulfilling a contract with a user or having obtained his or her consent.
But by the time someone sees a digital ad, in many cases the app or website they are using has already sent information to dozens of other companies that can bid for that ad spot'--making it difficult for all those companies to obtain consent.
Some advertising technology companies say they rely on another legal basis, which allows them to use personal data in certain ways if the company has a ''legitimate interest'' to do so, which balances the company's need to process the data with an individual's interest.
A group representing EU privacy regulators said it is difficult to justify relying on the legitimate interest basis for companies that track users across multiple sites and apps for advertising purposes. Last month's report from the U.K. office issued a harsher opinion on that basis, calling it impossible for real-time bidding to meet the legal requirements of legitimate interest.
IAB Europe said it would fight to preserve the online-ad industry's use of the legitimate interest exemption. ''It's not clear under the GDPR that you can't use legitimate interest for profiling,'' Ms. Feehan said.
On Friday, the Information Commissioner's Office issued additional guidance regarding browser ''cookies,'' which are small text files that websites can set on a visitor and follow users around the web. The office said cookies not essential to providing the service requested by the user'--including those for advertising'--can't rely on legitimate interest and can only be placed with users' explicit consent.
Write to Patience Haggin at patience.haggin@wsj.com and Sam Schechner at sam.schechner@wsj.com
Facebook to 'downgrade sensational or misleading health posts' | Euronews
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 15:31
Facebook is minimising health content that is sensational or misleading, according to a blog post published last week by Travis Yeh, a product manager for the social media giant.
The company has introduced two ranking updates to reduce posts with ''exaggerated or sensational health claims'' and posts that are ''attempting to sell products or services based on health-related claims".
Yeh writes that Facebook is handling the "down-ranking" of these types of posts in the same way that they have previously reduced clickbait posts.
Phrases that are commonly used in posts that include misleading or exaggerated health claims will be identified.
These phrases will then be used to predict which posts may include sensational health claims or maybe promoting products with health-related claims,= and will be shown lower in people's news feeds.
Hundreds of Facebook groups dedicated to natural treatments exist on the social media platform, claiming to have cures for cancer and other ailments. These groups speak of ''miracle cures'' in the forms of baking soda, apple cider vinegar, and frankincense.
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French lower parliament passes online hate speech law
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 17:01
/ Live news Date created : 09/07/2019 - 17:23
Sites that fail to comply with the law risk fines of up to 1.25 million euros ($1.4 million) AFPParis (AFP)
French MPs on Tuesday passed a landmark law to fight online hate speech which will oblige social media networks to remove offending content in 24 hours and create a new button to enable users to flag abuse.
Members of the lower house of parliament voted by 434 in favour to 33 against to adopt the law, which is modelled on German legislation that came into force last year. Sixty-nine MPs abstained.
Sites that fail to comply with the law and remove "obviously hateful" content risk fines of up to 1.25 million euros ($1.4 million).
The upper-house Senate will now examine the legislation, and could suggest amendments.
A series of tech giants, including Facebook and YouTube, announced crackdowns on hateful and violent content in recent months, spurring calls for tougher regulation.
Governments accused online platforms of not doing enough to stamp out hate speech in a Paris summit in May after a gunman broadcast his attack on two New Zealand mosques live on Facebook via a head-mounted camera.
The footage was shared millions of times despite efforts to remove it.
"We must ensure the safety and protection of people online, especially the most vulnerable," said Laetitia Avia, a black MP who drafted the bill.
She told parliament last week she suffers so many racist insults on Twitter that she once thought an abuse-free day was due to a technical problem.
Critics say the law places too much power in the platforms' hands by making them arbiters of online speech.
Social media giant Facebook has questioned whether the 24-hour window to remove hateful content is realistic, saying many posts require careful analysis and tricky legal assessment.
MPs debated long into the night last week to try to agree on what constitutes "obviously hateful" messages or videos.
They agreed to include condoning crimes against humanity. But amendments seeking to integrate specific references to anti-Zionism and hate against the state of Israel were rejected and did not make the final text.
? 2019 AFP
French MPs back giving online platforms 24 hours to remove hate speech
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 17:02
Paris (AFP)
French MPs on Thursday backed a proposal to give online platforms just 24 hours to remove hate speech or face hefty fines, the latest initiative in Europe to tackle online racism, anti-Semitism, sexism and homophobia.
Members of the lower house of parliament voted by 31 in favour to six against to adopt the first article of a new law proposed by President Emmanuel Macron's party, which is modelled on a similar German law. Four MPs abstained.
Social media sites that fail to comply with the law risk fines of up to 1.25 million euros ($1.4 million)
A final vote on the full text is expected next Tuesday.
Other parts of the bill include a proposal to create an identical button across all social media platforms and search engines enabling users to flag messages that are "obviously" hateful and illegal.
"We should not tolerate on the internet what we do not tolerate on the street," Laetitia Avia, the black MP who drafted the bill, told parliament on Wednesday, adding that she herself could no longer bear being racially abused by social media trolls.
Critics say the law places too much power in the platforms' hands by making them arbiters of online speech.
MPs debated the bill late into the night Wednesday to try to agree on what constitutes "obviously hateful" messages or videos.
They agreed to include condoning crimes against humanity, but not hateful comments about the state of Israel.
? 2019 AFP
Nieuwe 'trilaanval' van Merkel zou mentale kwestie zijn | NOS
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 13:46
Bondskanselier Merkel (l) bij de benoeming van de nieuwe minister van Justitie EPA De Duitse bondskanselier Merkel heeft voor de tweede keer in korte tijd bij een openbaar optreden een 'trilaanval' gehad. Die kwam op bij de inauguratie van de nieuwe minister van Justitie, Christine Lambrecht, in slot Bellevue in Berlijn. Gedurende twee minuten trilde de 64-jarige Merkel over haar hele lichaam, terwijl ze haar armen voor haar lichaam kruiste, alsof ze zichzelf onder controle wilde krijgen.
"Je zag dat ze over haar hele lijf begon te trillen", zegt correspondent Judith van de Hulsbeek op NPO Radio 1. "Ze moest echt haar armen vasthouden om het tegen te gaan. Haar woordvoerder bood haar een glas water aan, maar dat sloeg ze af, waarschijnlijk omdat ze het niet eens kon vasthouden. Zo heftig was het."
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Acht dagen geleden overkwam Merkel hetzelfde bij de ontvangst van de nieuwe Oekra¯ense president Zelensky. Toen stond ze buiten in de zon. Een uur later zei ze dat ze last had gehad van uitdroging.
Nadat ze ze een paar glazen water had gedronken, voelde ze zich weer prima. Het Duitse persbureau DPA meldde vandaag dat haar eerder hetzelfde is overkomen, zonder daarbij een plaats of datum te noemen.
Ditmaal lijkt het warme weer geen rol te hebben gespeeld. Het incident gebeurde om 08.30 uur in de ochtend. Na dagen van extreme hitte, waarbij het gisteren nog 38 graden werd, was het vandaag weer koeler in Berlijn.
Extreem werkschemaDe woordvoerders van Merkel gaven in eerste instantie geen commentaar op het nieuwe incident. Wel zeiden ze dat het weer goed met haar ging. Na het incident in slot Bellevue was ze even in de Bondsdag te zien voor de bediging van de nieuwe minister van Justitie. Ze zag er ontspannen uit en kletste en lachte met vicekanselier Olaf Scholz.
Merkels werkschema is niet aangepast, en dat is de komende dagen extreem. Vanmiddag is ze naar Japan vertrokken voor een naar verwachting loodzware G20-top, zondag moet ze weer in Brussel zijn voor een EU-top.
Ondertussen wordt in de media druk gespeculeerd over de oorzaak. "Er zijn al allerlei artsen aan het woord geweest", zegt Van de Hulsbeek. "Wat kan dit nu zijn? Is het een infectie of een heftige griep? Merkel staat bekend om haar werkethos en haar korte nachtrust. Maar we weten niet wat het is."
Psychologisch procesLater verklaarde een andere woordvoerder van Merkel tegenover persbureau Reuters dat het trillen een mentale oorzaak had. "Ze probeerde wanhopig een herhaling van het trillen van vorige week te voorkomen. De herinnering aan dat incident leidde tot de situatie vandaag. Het was een psychologisch proces. Er is niets om ons zorgen over te maken".
Merkel is al veertien jaar aan de macht en is van plan haar termijn tot 2021 vol te maken. Ze geldt als zeer gezond. Een van haar kwaliteiten is haar uithoudingsvermogen. Tijdens lange vergaderingen gaat zij door waar anderen uitgeput raken.
In 2015 vestigde ze haar record toen ze 17 uur achtereen met de Russische president Poetin onderhandelde. Ze heeft zichzelf wel eens een 'slaap-kameel' genoemd: als ze in het weekend maar een keer een nacht doorslaapt, kan ze daar de rest van de week op teren.
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Merkel opnieuw bevend in beeld bij ceremonie in Berlijn | NOS
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 13:45
De Duitse bondskanselier Merkel heeft voor de derde keer in drie weken een 'trilaanval' gehad. Bij een welkomstceremonie voor haar Finse collega Antti Rinne in Berlijn beefde ze over haar hele lichaam terwijl ze naar de volksliederen luisterde.
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Merkel (64) leek zichzelf tijdens het beven toe te spreken. Na de volksliederen verliet ze met Rinne het podium en wandelde ze haar kantoor binnen.
Op een persconferentie met Rinne zei Merkel ruim een uur later dat het heel goed met haar gaat. "U hoeft zich geen zorgen te maken." Ze zei ook dat ze de eerste aanval nog aan het verwerken is. "Dat proces is nog niet afgerond, maar er zijn wel verbeteringen". Verder weidde ze er niet over uit.
Uitdroging en mentale kwestieDe eerste keer dat Merkel stond te trillen was op 18 juni, op dezelfde plek als vandaag. Toen zei ze na afloop dat ze te weinig had gedronken, terwijl het buiten zo'n 30 graden was en ze in de volle zon had gestaan. Nu is het slechts een graad of 17 in de Duitse hoofdstad.
Een week later ging het opnieuw mis, bij de inauguratie van de nieuwe minister van Justitie. Volgens een woordvoerder was er geen reden tot zorg, het trillen zou een mentale kwestie zijn.
Hams will save the day - EQ Machine
Report: California Earthquakes Disrupted HF Propagation on West Coast
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 12:39
07/08/2019British Columbia radio amateur Alex Schwarz, VE7DXW, said that an Independence Day magnitude 6.4 earthquake in California's Mojave Desert and multiple aftershocks negatively affected HF propagation on the US west coast. Schwarz, who maintains the '' RF Seismograph '' and has drawn a correlation between earthquake activity and HF band conditions, said the radio disruption began at around 1600 UTC on July 4, and continued into July 5. He said that o n July 4, the blackout was total except for 20 meters, where conditions were ''severely attenuated,'' Schwarz said. The RF Seismograph also detected the magnitude 7.1 earthquake on July 6 in the same vicinity , Schwarz reported. The d istance between the monitoring station in Vancouver, British Columbia, and that quake's epicenter is 1,240 miles.
''Things are back to normal after the strong quake, as far as the ionosphere is concerned, but the unrest has not stopped yet,'' Schwarz told ARRL on July 8. ''There were over 7,000 mostly small quakes, and these do not seem to have the energy to affect the ionosphere. We all hope that this will settle down soon.'' Schwarz said the RF Seismometer detected a magnitude 6.9 earthquake in Indonesia.
Over the holiday weekend, Schwarz had reported ''a massive short-wave radio blackout'' on the west coast. ''It is not caused by the sun (the sun is quiet), but the field lines of the 'quakes themselves,'' he said. A magnitude 6.2 earthquake took place off Vancouver Island, British Columbia, on July 4.
On July 6, Schwarz said, the RF Seismograph showed an increase in noise on 80 meters some 13 hours beforehand, as well as some propagation changes on 40 and 30 meters '-- low before the quake and increasing in its wake. Increases in noise on 15 and 10 meters were detected some 10 hours before the earthquake, diminishing about 3 hours afterward. In addition, noise level and propagation changes on 20 meters some 3 hours before the earthquake.
Schwarz said larger quakes spur longer periods of 80-meter noise which cross the day/night boundary. ''The difficulty is the 80 meter noise difference between day and night, which is hard to subtract from the graphs,'' he added. With earthquakes of lesser magnitude (4.0 to 5.9), the RF Seismograph displays the rise and fall typically within daytime or nighttime propagation, making it more obvious. ''The measurement on the other bands is more consistent, and the quake can have either an amplifying or attenuating effect on propagation,'' Schwarz told ARRL.
All of the earthquakes of the past few days occurred within a 4-square-mile area in and around Ridgecrest in Kern County. Several injuries were reported, along with property damage. ARES and the Sierra Amateur Radio Club (SARC) have actively supported communications during the earthquake swarm and magnitude 7.1 quake in and around Ridgecrest, in the Mojave Desert. ''Many club members are busy collecting information, running an emergency net, as well as staffing a back-up communication van,'' Mike Herr, WA6ARA, told ARRL on July 7.
The RF Seismograph propagation tool employs an omnidirectional multiband antenna to monitor JT65 frequencies (±10 kHz) on 80, 40, 30, 20, 15, and 10 meters. Recorders monitor the background noise and display the result in six color-coded, long-duration graphs displaying 6 hours of scans. When signals are present on a band, its graph trace starts to resemble a series of vertical bars.
The RF Seismograph recorded the magnitude 7.5 earthquake in Ecuador on February 22. Schwarz recounted that noise on 15 meters began to be visible about 1 hour before the quake; then, 2 hours after the quake released, 15 meters started to recover. It did not affect 80 meters. ''The earthquakes show up as RF noise because of the electric field lines, now scientifically confirmed to change the way the ionosphere reflects RF,'' Schwarz said.
Schwarz has cited an article in the October 2018 edition of Scientific American, which, he says, explains the phenomenon. (See Erik Vance's '' Earthquakes in the sky ,'' Scientific American, October 2018, p. 44.)
The Scientific American article explores measurements in Japan and how earthquakes can create electric field lines that extend into the atmosphere. Schwarz said 171 earthquakes '-- all magnitude 6.0 events or greater '-- were studied, and only 15 of them had no RF noise associated with them.
RF Seismograph is now a projec t on Scistarter.com , facilitated through Arizona State University. Contact Schwarz for additional information.
About the Chinese
at you once again with info you didn't ask for.
In 2007 I spent about 3 months in southern China. Hong Kong, Haikou, Sanya, and
Guangzhou. Upon my arrival my first order of business was to get a hotel room.
My guide and I approached the counter and began the process. This man and woman
pushed their way in front of us and the woman behind the counter began helping
them. I said out loud "hey! What the hell?". My guide informed me I
was being rude and that this was the way things operate in China. This was my
experience repeatedly over the next few months. However, by the end of my trip
I would just insert myself back into whatever interaction I was having. I would
tell them in Chinese I was there first and there were no problems. I saw a lot
of crazy shit there but I digress.
It wasn't considered rude there. Imagine being 1 out of 1.5 billion people. The
way it was explained to me is with all of those people there you have to do
what you have to do regardless of anyone else. That place was crowded like I'd
never seen before. Even more than New York City. The buses and subways were
nuts. I would sometimes wait 4 or 5 buses to get on just to be squeezed in with
barely room to close the door. Literally. That is not an exaggeration. There is
no personal space there so why would they have any concept of it?
I was there right before the Beijing Olympics and they had classes for people
who were attending on how to queue up. No bullshit. I don't think they do it
intentionally when they're travelling. They're ignorant yes, but the problem is
they don't give a shit about anyone else's personal space and don't seek to
care when they're visiting a foreign land. Most people were actually very
polite when interacting and having conversation. Most people were willing to
help and seemed even more eager when you spoke Chinese. Gotta save face
INSTEX without credit not acceptable to Iran: Deputy FM
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 14:53
IRNA '' Europe's efforts to help Iran thwart the US sanctions is valuable but not enough unless it receives the required credit, a senior Iranian diplomat said Sunday.
As a preliminary step, and a means for trade between Iran and Europe, INSTEX is a good initiative, Abbas Araghchi said referring to the financial channel'--Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges'-- the European signatories to the nuclear deal had undertaken to provide Iran with such a means.
However, the implementation of the initiative has taken so long time, he added at a joint press conference with spokesmen of Government and Atomic Energy Organization of Iran.
INSTEX will bring no income unless the European countries buy Iran's oil, or allocate credit to Iran, Araghchi said, noting that no such measures have been taken yet.
The INSTEX was made operational by both sides, and the two parties are in contact with each other, he said confirming that a couple of minor pilot exchanges have been conducted.
''We believe that it will be no good unless there is enough credit,'' he said, welcoming the efforts made by Europe in defiance of US sanctions as a valuable ''political move''.
''We are communicating, making visits and phone calls, either officially or unofficially, and are hoping that they lead to a solution,'' he said, ''Otherwise, we will take the third step after the next 60-day deadline.''
On Sunday, Tehran said that at the second phase of its measures to preserve the nuclear deal, it officially launches enriching uranium beyond the 3.67 percent limit that is set by the deal. The first stage came on the anniversary of the US withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in May when Iran announced it reduces its commitments under the deal.
Asked about Arak Reactor, Araghchi said, ''As it was stipulated in the letters of Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and President Rouhani, Arak is a separate issue, and because the process of modernization of the reactor has been delayed, if the remaining signatories to the JCPOA cannot rectify the process and lead Arak on the track as it was specified on schedule, we naturally will complete it according to our own formula and technology.''
Asked about UK Navy's wrongful act to seize Iranian supertanker in the high seas passing through the international waterway of Gibraltar, Araghchi said, ''Contrary to what the British government claims, the tanker was not heading to Syria, as the country does not have any port for docking such a giant supertanker. The destination of the tanker was somewhere else. It has been moving along the international waterway of Gibraltar.''
''The International Law does not allow the UK Navy to seize Iranian supertanker. It amounts to sea piracy in our view, and we urge the UK government to release the supertanker,'' he said.
UK seized the Iranian tanker on Thursday, claiming that the act was in line with the EU sanctions on Syria.
United States Soccer Federation - Wikipedia
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 12:52
Coordinates: 41°51'²28'"N 87°37'²14'"W >> / >> 41.857768°N 87.620445°W >> / 41.857768; -87.620445
The United States Soccer Federation (USSF), commonly referred to as U.S. Soccer, is a 501(c)(3) organization and the official governing body of the sport of soccer in the United States. With headquarters in Chicago, the FIFA member governs U.S. amateur and professional soccer, including the men's, women's, youth, beach soccer, futsal, and Paralympic national teams. U.S. Soccer sanctions referees and soccer tournaments for most soccer leagues in the United States. The U.S. Soccer Federation also administers and operates the U.S. Open Cup, which was first held in 1914.
Organization and governance [ edit ] U.S. Soccer is governed by a board of directors that administers the affairs of U.S. Soccer. Individuals in key leadership positions include:[3]
Carlos Cordeiro '' president[4]Dan Flynn '' CEO and secretary generalU.S. Soccer members comprise individuals and affiliate organizations. The national council is the representative membership body of the federation. It elects the president and vice president, amends the bylaws, approves the budgets, decides on policies adopted by the board, and affirms actions of the Board.
U.S. Soccer is a member of the worldwide soccer body FIFA and the North American soccer body CONCACAF, and also has a relationship with the U.S. Olympic Committee and the International Olympic Committee.[5]
The federation convenes in an annual meeting, usually held in February. Every four years, the annual meeting's attendees hold an election for the federation's president and vice president.[6]
Members of the U.S. Soccer Federation [ edit ] USSF recognizes the following members:[7]
Professional Council [ edit ] Major League Soccer (MLS)National Women's Soccer League (NWSL)North American Soccer League (NASL)United Soccer League (USL)Adult Council [ edit ] United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA)Youth Council [ edit ] United States Youth Soccer Association (US Youth Soccer)American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO)US Club SoccerSoccer Association for Youth (SAY)USSF State Soccer Associations [ edit ] Other affiliate members [ edit ] American Amputee Soccer AssociationArmed Forces Sports CouncilUnited Soccer CoachesUnited States Power Soccer Association (USPSA)U.S. Soccer Foundation (USSF)United States Futsal FederationUnited States Specialty Sports AssociationUnited States of America Deaf Soccer Association (USA Deaf Soccer)History [ edit ] United States Soccer Federation headquarters building, known as U.S. Soccer House, 1801 South
Prairie Avenue in
ChicagoU.S. Soccer was originally known as the United States Football Association. It formed on April 5, 1913[8] and on August 15 of that year was accepted as one of the earliest member organizations of FIFA and the first from North and Central America. The affiliation was temporary and at the following year's FIFA Congress in 1914, the USFA, as it was abbreviated at the time, was accepted as a full FIFA member.[9] The governing body of the sport in the United States added the word soccer to its name in 1945, when it became the United States Soccer Football Association; by this point, football as a standalone word had come to define a totally different sport in the U.S. It dropped the word football from its name in 1974 to become known as the United States Soccer Federation.[10]
U.S. Soccer has hosted several global soccer tournaments, including the 1994 FIFA World Cup, the FIFA Women's World Cup in 1999 and 2003, and the Summer Olympics in 1984 and 1996.
National teams [ edit ] U.S. men's national team [ edit ] The United States national team was first assembled in 1885 to play Canada in the first international match held outside the United Kingdom.[11]
The men's national team was invited to the inaugural World Cup in 1930 and qualified for the World Cup in 1934, finishing third place in 1930 out of 13 teams participating. In 1950 the United States scored one of its most surprising victories with a 1''0 win over heavily favored England, who were amongst the world's best sides at the time.
The United States failed to reach another World Cup until an upstart team qualified for the 1990 World Cup with the "goal heard around the world" scored by Paul Caligiuri against Trinidad and Tobago, which started the modern era of soccer in the United States. The 1990 men's national team was quickly disposed of at the World Cup, but nonetheless had qualified for its first World Cup in 40 years.
The United States hosted the 1994 World Cup, setting total and average attendance records that still stand, including drawing 94,194 fans to the final. The United States made a surprising run to the second round with a shocking victory over Colombia which saw Andr(C)s Escobar, the player responsible for the United States' first goal (an own goal), later shot to death in his homeland.
1998 saw another disappointing addition to the history of the men's national team as it finished last out of the 32 teams that qualified for the World Cup. This embarrassment, which included a total collapse of team chemistry and leadership, led to the firing of manager Steve Sampson.
The U.S. team hired Bruce Arena, who had won the first two MLS Cups in Major League Soccer history, and who went on to become the most successful United States men's national team manager in history. In 2002 Bruce Arena led a mix of veterans and MLS-seasoned youth to a quarterfinal appearance, dispatching contenders Portugal in group play and archrivals Mexico in the Round of 16, before losing a closely fought game with eventual runners-up Germany in the quarterfinal.
The team looked to match or surpass that feat in 2006; the U.S. was drawn into a group with Italy, the Czech Republic and Ghana. The United States lost to the Czech Republic 3''0 in their opening game, drew Italy, 1''1, in their second game (a match that saw two U.S. players and an Italian player red carded), and lost to Ghana, 2''1. The United States did not advance out of the group, but were the only team to face eventual winner Italy without losing. In the wake of the team's disappointing performance, Arena's contract was not renewed.
Bob Bradley, Chivas USA manager and Arena's assistant manager with the men's national team, eventually succeeded Arena in 2007. The U.S. qualified for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa,[12] winning the CONCACAF qualifying tournament. At the World Cup, the Americans tied England 1''1, tied Slovenia, 2''2. and then won their group by defeating Algeria 1''0 on a stoppage time goal by Landon Donovan. In the Round of 16, the United States played Ghana, and fell 2''1 in extra time.
Entering the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, the U.S team won all three friendly "send-off" matches leading up to the competition: 2''0, over Azerbaijan, 2''1, over Turkey, and 2''1 over fellow World Cup participant and defending African champions Nigeria. They were led at the time by J¼rgen Klinsmann, who helped lead West Germany to victory in the 1990 World Cup and was the first player to score at least three goals in three consecutive World Cups.
During the 2014 World Cup, the U.S. won their first match against Ghana, 2''1. Clint Dempsey scored in the first minute of the match giving the U.S. the early lead. Ghana did not respond until the 82nd minute scoring the equalizer goal. The U.S. then reclaimed the lead, thanks to John Brooks scoring the game-winning goal off his head just four minutes later in the 86th minute to regain the lead and take the match. The U.S. gained three points for their win and was off to a great start in the "Group of Death" claimed by critics for the teams the U.S. would have to go through (Germany, Ghana, and Portugal).
The second match of the World Cup for the U.S. was a different story. Portugal claimed the early lead, with Nani scoring in the 5th minute to take the early 1''0 lead. It wasn't till the 64th minute till the U.S. scored the equalizing goal, thanks to Jermaine Jones, tying the match at 1 apiece. The U.S. then claimed the lead on a goal by Clint Dempsey again, scoring in the 81st minute to take a 2''1 lead. However, in the final minute of extra time, the world player of the year, Cristiano Ronaldo drilled a perfect cross to teammate Silvestre Varela who headed in the tying goal, making the final score 2''2. The tie gave each team a point in the overall standings, bringing the U.S. to 4 points total, and gave Portugal their first point of the World Cup having lost their opening match to Germany, 4''0. The U.S. claimed a spot in the knockout round in spite of a 1''0 loss to eventual champion Germany in their final group game due to them winning the tiebreaker with Portugal. However, they bowed out the tournament in the round of 16 in a 2''1 loss to Belgium. Goalkeeper Tim Howard helped the U.S. keep a 0''0 tie at full time. In extra time, there were two Belgian goals. The U.S. struck back with a goal by 19-year-old phenom Julian Green but could not manage another goal. Klinsman was let go as USMNT Director of Coaching and was replaced by Bruce Arena in November 2016.
The U.S. finished in fifth place in the fifth round of the CONCACAF qualification tournament for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, which concluded in October 2017. This marks the first time that the U.S. failed to qualify for the World Cup since 1986. As a result of the fifth-place finish, Bruce Arena was let go as USMNT Director of Coaching later that month.
United States, will jointly host with Canada and Mexico for the 2026 FIFA World Cup after beating out Morocco on June 13, 2018 in Moscow, Russia.
U.S. women's national team [ edit ] The women's national team has won four FIFA Women's World Cup tournaments in 1991, 1999, 2015, and 2019 (placing second in 2011 and third in 1995, 2003, and 2007); the Olympic Gold Medal in 1996, 2004, 2008, and 2012; and seven Algarve Cups and six CONCACAF Women's Gold Cups.
The FIFA Women's World Cup was inaugurated in 1991, and the women's national team became the first team to win the prize after beating Norway in the final.
In 1999, the United States hosted the FIFA Women's World Cup for the first time. During their tournament run, the women's national team established a new level of popularity for the women's game, culminating in a final against China that drew 90,185 fans, an all-time attendance record for a women's sports event, to a sold-out Rose Bowl. After neither team scored in regulation or extra time, the final went to a penalty shootout, which the United States won 5''4. The celebration by Brandi Chastain after she converted the winning penalty, in which she took off her shirt, is one of the more famous images in U.S. women's sports.
Youth national teams [ edit ] U.S. Soccer Federation oversees and promotes the development of the following national youth teams:[13]
U.S. Under-23 MenU.S. Under-23 WomenU.S. Under-20 MenU.S. Under-20 WomenU.S. Under-19 MenU.S. Under-19 WomenU.S. Under-18 MenU.S. Under-18 WomenU.S. Under-17 MenU.S. Under-17 WomenU.S. Under-16 MenU.S. Under-16 WomenU.S. Under-15 BoysU.S. Under-15 GirlsU.S. Under-14 BoysU.S. Under-14 GirlsU.S. Paralympic National Team [ edit ] The U.S. Paralympic Soccer Team is an elite level program for men that selects players from across the United States in preparation for International standard competition. The team competes in 7-a-side football. The squad is composed of athletes who have cerebral palsy or have suffered a stroke or traumatic brain injury. The program is Coached by Stuart Sharp under the oversight of the U.S. Soccer Federation.[14]
Headquarters and national training center [ edit ] U.S. Soccer House is located in two refurbished mansions at 1801 South Prairie Avenue in Chicago, Illinois and serves as the headquarters for the U.S. Soccer Federation.[15]
In 2003, U.S. Soccer opened their National Training Center at Dignity Health Sports Park (then named Home Depot Center) in Carson, California. The $130 million facility includes a soccer-specific stadium, home to the MLS team Los Angeles Galaxy. Additionally, four grass soccer fields, a FieldTurf soccer field and a general training area are specifically dedicated to U.S. Soccer. Both the senior and youth men's and women's US national teams hold regular camps at Dignity Health Sports Park.[16]
U.S. Soccer was also exploring a possibility of building the National Training and Coaching Development Center in Kansas City, Kansas.[17] On April 9, 2015, the Training Center received final approval from the local governments. U.S. Soccer agreed to a 20-year lease, with the project set to break ground in 2016 and finishing some time in 2017.[18][19]
Professional leagues [ edit ] Despite the growth of men's and women's professional soccer in the United States in the last few decades, by far the largest category of soccer in the United States, at least in terms of participation, is boys and girls youth soccer. Though organized locally by organizations all over the United States, there are two main youth soccer organizations working nationwide through affiliated local associations. The United States Youth Soccer Association boasts over three million players between the ages of five and 19, while American Youth Soccer Organization has more than 300,000 players between the ages of four and 19. This makes soccer one of the most played sports by children in the United States.
Men [ edit ] The professional first-division league in North America is Major League Soccer, which as of the 2018 season, has 20 teams in the U.S. and 3 in Canada. The league has added three teams since 2017 with the addition of Atlanta United FC and Minnesota United FC in 2017 and Los Angeles FC in 2018, and plans to add five more teams no later than the early 2020s. The league operates as a single-entity league, which means MLS, and not the individual teams, holds the contracts on players.
The one sanctioned second-division men's outdoor soccer league is the United Soccer League (USL). Previously, the second North American Soccer League had second-division status, sharing it with the USL in the 2017 season, but the NASL was denied second-division sanctioning for 2018 due to considerable instability in the league.[20]
The new NASL has no official tie to the former NASL that operated from 1968 to 1984; though, some of the teams share names with their historic counterparts. Unlike MLS that is a single-entity operation, the new NASL, like the old NASL, has no salary cap and players are contracted by the individual teams.[21] The season is a split format (similar to that of many leagues in Latin America) that features seven teams, including one Puerto Rican team. Previous to the reorganization of the NASL in 2009, the USL First Division operated as the professional second-division league in the United States. However, a dispute among its teams and ownership led to the creation of the NASL which applied for and was awarded by USSF second division status. The 2010 season was played as a combined USL/NASL league format before NASL officially separated in 2011.[22]
The United Soccer Leagues (USL) were a collection of five leagues spanning the lower divisions of men's professional soccer, as well as women's soccer and youth soccer. After the 2010 season, the USL folded its former First and Second Divisions into a new professional third-division league, USL Pro, that launched in 2011. At launch, it had 15 teams: 11 on the U.S. mainland, three in Puerto Rico, and one in Antigua and Barbuda. The Puerto Rican teams, plagued by ownership and economic issues, were dropped from the league after 2011, and the Antigua team discontinued operations after a winless 2013 season. In January 2013, USL and MLS reached an agreement to integrate USL Pro league competition with the MLS Reserve League spawning the creation of secondary teams directly affiliated with MLS franchises. This was done primarily to improve player development in North America, strengthen league competition and build ties between divisions in the American soccer pyramid. This multi-year deal encourages MLS and USL Pro team affiliations and player loans, and it will lead to more games for teams and to the development of American players. The deal has proven to be a boon for USL Pro, and in 2015, after a rebrand to USL, 24 teams were participating in a healthy and stable 3rd division.[23][24] USL was provisionally sanctioned as a second-division league for 2017, claiming that their final applications met all the standards for second-division sanctioning.[25][26]
There are currently no sanctioned third-division leagues. Two leagues have indicated that they will seek third-division status. United Soccer Leagues, administrator of the USL and USL League Two leagues, announced that they would start a new league called USL League One, and seek third-division certification and targeting 2019 as the first season for the new league.[27] National Independent Soccer Association (NISA) led by former Chicago Fire general manager Peter Wilt plans on fielding 8''10 teams in 2018 and has stated that it will seek third-division certification.[28]
A fourth-division league in the United States is the USL League Two, which as of 2015 is expected to have 58 U.S. teams, and six Canadian teams. Though League Two does have some paid players, it also has many teams that are made up entirely or almost entirely of college soccer players who use the league as an opportunity to play competitive soccer in front of professional scouts during the summer, while retaining amateur status and NCAA eligibility. Another fourth-division league in the United States is the National Premier Soccer League.
In addition to MLS and the USL, the United States Adult Soccer Association governs amateur soccer competition for adults throughout the United States, which is effectively the amateur fifth-division of soccer in the United States. The USASA sanctions regional tournaments that allow entry into the U.S. Open Cup, the oldest continuous national soccer competition in the United States. Since 1914, the competition has been open to all U.S. Soccer affiliated clubs, and currently pits teams from all five levels of the American soccer pyramid against each other each year, similarly to England's FA Cup.
Women [ edit ] Women's soccer in the United States has been played at the professional level in three separate leagues since 2001. The first two attempts at professional leagues lasted three seasons each.
Women's United Soccer Association (WUSA), 2001''2003 [ edit ] The Women's United Soccer Association (WUSA) was founded in 2001. Headlined by the stars of the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup-winning team, $30 million was initially invested by numerous cable TV networks and owners.[29] The league's inaugural match was held between the Washington Freedom featuring Mia Hamm and the Bay Area CyberRays (featuring Brandi Chastain) at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C.. In addition to the 34,148 fans in attendance being greater than any MLS game that weekend, the Turner Network Television (TNT) broadcast reached 393,087 households: more than two MLS games broadcast on ESPN and ESPN2.[30] The league folded in 2003.
Women's Professional Soccer (WPS), 2009''2011 [ edit ] The second attempt, Women's Professional Soccer, was founded in 2009, and featured involvement of many former WUSA figures. The champion of WPS' first season in 2009 was Sky Blue FC, out of the New York''New Jersey area. They defeated the Los Angeles Sol 1''0 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, California. WPS launched with seven teams, all based in the United States. The Sol folded after the league's inaugural season, and two new teams joined for 2010, bringing WPS to eight teams. However, the 2010 season saw considerable instability, with another charter team, Saint Louis Athletica, folding during the season, champions FC Gold Pride folding after the season, and the Chicago Red Stars deciding to regroup in the second-tier Women's Premier Soccer League (WPSL). The 2011 season, in which six teams based along the East Coast played, was marked by low attendance for most of the season and conflict with Dan Borislow, who had purchased the former Washington Freedom, moved the team to South Florida, and renamed it magicJack. The dispute between WPS and Borislow led the league to suspend the magicJack franchise, with Borislow responding by suing. The legal battle led WPS to suspend its 2012 season, with hopes of returning in 2013, but WPS soon decided to fold completely.
National Women's Soccer League (NWSL), 2013''present [ edit ] On November 21, 2012, U.S. Soccer, in conjunction with the Canadian Soccer Association (CSA) and Mexican Football Federation (FMF), announced the formation of a new professional league for the 2013 season.[31] The league, unnamed at the time of the initial announcement but later unveiled as the National Women's Soccer League (NWSL), launched in April 2013 with eight teams.[31] Like WUSA and WPS, NWSL teams are privately owned with some owned by existing MLS teams.[32] The American and Canadian federations pay the salaries for many of their respective national team members. U.S. Soccer initially committed to funding up to 24 national team members, with the CSA committing to paying 16 players and FMF pledging support for at least 12 and possibly as many as 16.[32][33] In addition, U.S. Soccer housed the league's front office for the first four years, and scheduled matches to avoid any possible conflict with international tournaments.[32] Four of the league's charter teams had WPS ties'--the Boston Breakers, Chicago Red Stars, Sky Blue FC, and the Western New York Flash. The other four initial teams were located in the Kansas City, Portland, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. markets with the Portland team run by the Portland Timbers of MLS.[32] The NWSL expanded to nine teams for 2014 by adding the Houston Dash, run by the Houston Dynamo of MLS. In 2016, it expanded to 10 with the addition of another MLS-backed team, the Orlando Pride. Ahead of the 2017 season, A&E Networks announced it had taken an equity stake in the league and Lifetime would begin broadcasting games to a national television audience.[34] As of 2017[update], additional expansion teams were being discussed by Los Angeles FC, Vancouver Whitecaps, and FC Barcelona.[35][36][37]
Controversies [ edit ] Concussions [ edit ] In 2014 parents and former players filed a Class Action Lawsuit against the United States Soccer Federation, FIFA, and other Soccer Organizations for failure to create policies that would prevent, evaluate and manage concussion injuries.[38] Soccer is second only to American football in the number of concussion injuries per year.[39]
MLS relationship [ edit ] The USSF has been accused by representatives of the North American Soccer League, among others, of unfairly protecting MLS's leading role in American professional soccer. Among their concerns is that the USSF benefits from financial dealings with MLS that it does not have with other leagues, giving it an apparent incentive to protect MLS from competition.[40] This includes the contract that the USSF has with MLS's Soccer United Marketing (SUM) subsidiary in which most USSF sponsorship, television licensing and royalty revenues (outside of its apparel deal with Nike, Inc.) are paid through SUM. The USSF reported $15,433,754 in revenues through the SUM relationship in its 2014 audited financial report.[41]
In 2015, the NASL took issue with proposed USSF rule changes reportedly making it harder to gain co-equal "Division 1" status with MLS that would increase the NASL's influence within the USSF as well as presumably allow more access to international competition and larger media and sponsorship contracts, calling the draft proposal "...an anti-competitive bait and switch, with the purpose of entrenching MLS's monopoly position at the very time when the NASL is threatening to become a significant competitor."[42] Seats on the USSF's Professional Council governing committee are also based proportionally on pyramid level, giving MLS more votes when choosing the two professional league representatives on the USSF's board of directors. In 2015, those representatives are MLS Commissioner Don Garber and Alec Papadakis, CEO of the United Soccer League that announced an affiliation with MLS in 2015.
International competitiveness [ edit ] High-profile international soccer figures including former USMNT Head Coach J¼rgen Klinsmann,[43] former LA Galaxy head coach and USMNT Head Coach Bruce Arena[44] and Manchester City manager and former FIFA World Coach of the Year Pep Guardiola,[45] have expressed beliefs that the top-down structure of soccer developed and managed by the USSF in the United States, including pressure to have the best American players in MLS rather than higher-quality leagues in other countries, is hampering the nation's competitiveness in international soccer.
Conversely, Klinsmann has been criticized in turn by MLS representatives for recommending that American players leave MLS development systems to pursue professional careers in Europe in order to test themselves against higher levels of players in preparation for international competition. In 2015, MLS Commissioner Don Garber said, "I do believe our national team coach has a short-term objective. That's what he's hired to do. That doesn't mean next week, but it's to win the Gold Cup, it's to have the best possible team in 2018. And our goals and objectives are broader than that, and that's why we agree on some things but don't agree on others."[46]
Women's National Team Lawsuit [ edit ] On March 8, 2019, all members of the US Women's National Team collectively filed a gender discrimination lawsuit against the US Soccer Federation in a district court in Los Angeles. The lawsuit was filed due to claims that the athletes were being treated differently on the basis of gender, affecting their paychecks, the facilities they were offered, and even the medical treatment they received.[47] Women on the team have previously filed complaints about pay disparity, including in 2016 when five members of the women's team filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.[48][49]
Coaches and technical staff [ edit ] Men's coaches
Women's coaches
Technical Staff
Presidents [ edit ] United States Soccer Football Association (until 1974)
G. Randolph Manning (1913''1914)John A. Fernley (1914''1917)Peter J. Peel (1917''1919)George Healey (1919''1923)Peter J. Peel (1923''1924)Morris W. Johnson (1924''1926)Andrew M. Brown (1926''1928)Armstrong Patterson (1928''1932)Elmer A. Schroeder (1932''1934)Joseph J. Barriskill (1934''1936)Joseph Triner (1936''1938)H. S. Callowhill (1938''1941)Thomas E. Sager (1941''1945)H. H. Fairfield (1945''1948)Walter J. Giesler (1948''1950)F. W. Netto (1950''1952)James P. McGuire (1952''1954)E. Sullivan (1954''1957)W. Rechsteiner (1957''1959)Jack Flamhaft (1959''1961)J. Eugene Ringsdorf (1961''1963)George E. Fishwick (1963''1965)F. E. Woods (1965''1967)Bob Guelker (1967''1969)Erwin A. Single (1969''1971)James P. McGuire (1971''1975)United States Soccer Federation (1974''present)
Gene Edwards (1975''1984)Werner Fricker (1984''1990)Alan Rothenberg (1990''1998)Robert Contiguglia (1998 '' March 11, 2006)Sunil Gulati (March 11, 2006 '' January 10, 2018)Carlos Cordeiro (January 10, 2018''present) [ edit ] Anheuser-Busch[50]NikeVolkswagenContinentalCoca-ColaCutterPoweradeLiberty MutualAT&TThorneHisenseUSAJohnson & JohnsonTag HeuerVolpi FoodsSee also [ edit ] American Football AssociationU.S. Soccer Athlete of the YearUSWNT All-Time Best XINational Soccer Hall of FameU.S. Soccer Development AcademyUnited States Soccer Federation State Soccer AssociationReferences [ edit ] ^ "U.S. Soccer celebrates 100th anniversary". CONCACAF. April 9, 2013 . Retrieved May 25, 2016 . ^ "Ram"n Coll, electo Presidente de la Confederaci"n de Futbol de Am(C)rica del Norte, Am(C)rica Central y el Caribe". La Naci"n (Google News Archive). September 23, 1961. ^ "Board of Directors". ussoccer.com . Retrieved November 21, 2017 . ^ "Carlos Cordeiro Elected as 32nd U.S. Soccer President". ussoccer.com . Retrieved May 31, 2018 . ^ "Organizational Structure". ussoccer.com . Retrieved November 21, 2017 . ^ Kennedy, Paul (October 13, 2017). "Here's how U.S. Soccer's presidential election works". Soccer America . Retrieved November 6, 2017 . ^ "Organization Members". ussoccer.com . Retrieved July 6, 2019 . ^ Timeline. Resources.ussoccer.com (August 10, 2010). Retrieved August 12, 2013. ^ Spalding's Official Soccer Football Guide 1914''15, p. 44 ^ "U.S. Soccer: History". ussoccer.com. ^ "U.S. Soccer Timeline". U.S. Soccer Federation . Retrieved August 26, 2014 . ^ "October 10, 2009: Honduras 2''3 USA". espnfc.com. ^ "U.S. Soccer: Youth national teams". ussoccer.com. ^ "U.S. Soccer: Paralympic Soccer". ussoccer.com. ^ "Chicago: Home to U.S. Soccer House". ussoccer.com. ^ "U.S. Under-17 MNT To Be First to Practice at National Training Center at The Home Depot Center Friday". ussoccer.com. June 5, 2003. ^ "A home in Kansas? U.S. Soccer exploring new training center". bigapplesoccer.com. April 5, 2013. ^ McDowell, Sam. "National soccer education and training center gets final approval for construction in Kansas City, Kan". kansascity.com . Retrieved November 19, 2015 . ^ Augustine, Lisa; Jacobson, Jake. "Children's Mercy and Sporting Kansas City announce youth health and pediatric sports medicine initiative". childrensmercy.org . Children's Mercy Hospital . Retrieved November 19, 2015 . ^ "US Soccer Federation Rejects NASL's Division II Application". September 5, 2017. ^ "NASL 2011 Media Guide" (PDF) . November 7, 2011. ^ "FC Edmonton wins first-ever NASL game". The Soccer Room. April 10, 2011. Archived from the original on November 13, 2011 . Retrieved October 7, 2011 . ^ "MLS, USL Pro reach deal on restructured Reserve League". mlssoccer.com. January 23, 2013 . Retrieved January 27, 2013 . ^ "USL PRO & MLS Announce Partnership". uslpro.uslsoccer.com. January 23, 2013. Archived from the original on January 26, 2013 . Retrieved February 7, 2013 . ^ Straus, Brian (January 6, 2017). "U.S. Soccer grants provisional division two sanctioning to both NASL, USL". Sports Illustrated. ^ Straus, Brian (October 3, 2017). "USL President Ensures Compliance as League Submits D2 Application to U.S. Soccer". ^ "USL to Launch Third-Division League in 2019". United Soccer Leagues. April 2, 2013. . See also USLD3.com. ^ "EXCLUSIVE: The National Independent Soccer Association (NISA) '' A New Division III Professional Soccer League Expects to Launch in 2018". NISA. June 6, 2017 . Retrieved June 19, 2017 . ^ "Womens United Soccer Association". Sports Illustrated . Retrieved June 11, 2017 . ^ Grainey, Timothy F. (2012). Beyond it Like Beckham: The Global Phenomenon of Women's Soccer. University of Nebraska Press. ISBN 0-8032-4036-8. ^ a b "U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati Announces New Women's League to Begin Play in Spring of 2013" (Press release). United States Soccer Federation. November 21, 2012. Archived from the original on January 1, 2013 . Retrieved December 4, 2012 . ^ a b c d Carlisle, Jeff (November 21, 2012). "Hopes high for new women's soccer league". ESPN FC. Soccer USA blog. Archived from the original on November 28, 2012 . Retrieved December 8, 2012 . ^ "New soccer league to feature 8 teams". espnW. Associated Press. November 21, 2012 . Retrieved December 4, 2012 . ^ "A+E Networks, National Women's Soccer League Ink Major Deal". Variety . Retrieved June 11, 2017 . ^ "Spanish soccer giant Barcelona expands into U.S. market". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved June 11, 2017 . ^ "NWSL expansion a priority in Los Angeles, says commissioner". Angels on Parade . Retrieved June 11, 2017 . ^ "Sources: With Mia Hamm's influence, LAFC set for NWSL expansion". Soccer Wire . Retrieved June 11, 2017 . ^ Heitner, Darren. "Class Action Concussion Lawsuit Filed Against FIFA And U.S. Soccer Associations". ^ Gessel, LM; Fields, SK; Collins, CL; Dick, RW; Comstock, RD (2007). "Concussions among United States high school and collegiate athletes". J Athl Train. 42 (4): 495''503. PMC 2140075 . PMID 18174937. ^ Vinton, Nathaniel (August 31, 2015). "MLS rival accuses league of violating antitrust laws". Daily News. New York . Retrieved December 29, 2015 . ^ "United States Soccer Federation, Inc. Financial Statements, Years Ended March 31, 2015 and 2014" (PDF) . Major League Soccer. September 24, 2015 . Retrieved December 29, 2015 . ^ Scannell, Kara (August 31, 2015). "League cries foul at US Soccer Federation's new rules". Financial Times . Retrieved December 29, 2015 . ^ Carlisle, Jeff (November 14, 2014). "Jurgen Klinsmann firm on young player advice as MLS frustration grows". ESPN FC . Retrieved December 29, 2015 . ^ Dell'Apa, Frank (June 3, 2015). "BRUCE ARENA ON USMNT: 'WE'RE NOT THERE YET ' ". One World Sports . Retrieved December 29, 2015 . ^ Borg, Simon (July 22, 2014). "Bayern Munich manager Pep Guardiola says focus of US soccer should be on coaching and academies". MLSSoccer.com . Retrieved December 29, 2015 . ^ "Garber: MLS to pursue USMNT stars despite Klinsmann objections". ESPN FC. April 24, 2015 . Retrieved December 29, 2015 . ^ Das, Andrew. "U.S. Women's Soccer Team Sues U.S. Soccer for Gender Discrimination". The New York Times . Retrieved March 8, 2019 . ^ "Data: How does the U.S. women's soccer team pay compare to the men?". PBS NewsHour. March 31, 2016 . Retrieved March 8, 2019 . ^ "Five top female players sue U.S. Soccer over unequal pay". PBS NewsHour. March 31, 2016 . Retrieved March 8, 2019 . ^ "Official Sponsors". ussoccer.com . Retrieved May 31, 2018 . External links [ edit ] Official website U.S. at FIFAU.S. at CONCACAF
Who Is Brian Rapinoe (Meghan Rapinoe Brother) Wiki, Bio, Age, Birthday, Crimes, Drug Addiction | Factual Intel
Mon, 08 Jul 2019 16:03
Who Is Brian RapinoeBrian Rapinoe is the older brother of American professional soccer midfielder/winger Megan Rapinoe who plays for and captains Reign FC in the National Women's Soccer League. He is a recovering drug addict who has used drugs since he was 12 and have been in prison for most of his life.
Brian Rapinoe BirthdayBrian's birthday is on July 7. After the U.S. Women's National Team won the World Cup in which Meghan scored the opening goal in a 2-0 victory in the championship and earned the Golden Ball as the World Cup's best player she gave a shoutout to Brian as it was his birthday.
''It's unbelievable. It's surreal. I don't know how to feel right now.''@mPinoe, BELIEVE IT. ðŸŒðŸ‡ºðŸ‡¸ðŸ† pic.twitter.com/CCJ1QR20S3
'-- FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) July 7, 2019
Brian Rapinoe Familywas born to Jim Rapinoe and Denise Rapinoe. He has five siblings including Megahan and her fraternal twin Racheal Rapinoe.
Brian Rapinoe and his mother Denise RapinoeBrian Rapinoe Meghan RapinoeBrian is the older brother of Meghan who is a soccer player. Meghan was inspired to join soccer by her brother and she idolized him, she took up soccer at the age of three when Brian began playing. She has turned out to be a great player as she plays for and captains Reign FC in the National Women's Soccer League.
Meghan during an interview with ESPN said; ''My brother is special. He has so much to offer. It would be such a shame if he left this world with nothing but prison sentences behind him. To be able to have him out, and to play for him, and to have him healthy, with this different perspective that he has now: This is like the best thing ever.''
Brian Rapinoe DrugsAt the age of 12, Brian began smoking marijuana. During an interview, he said he doesn't know for sure why he began smoking but right from the start he got hooked and one drug led to another. He got attracted to the ''fast life,'' he says, to getting high, to driving nice cars and to the ''hype around this lifestyle.'' At the age of 15, he was arrested for taking meth to school and was sent to juvenile detention.
Brian Rapinoe CrimesAt the age of 18, Brian began taking heroin, he was arrested and charged with car theft, evading arrest and a hit-and-run while driving under the influence of drugs. While in prison he aligned himself with the white prison gang and was inked with Nazi tattoos. A swastika on his palm; lightning bolts on his fingers, sides and calves.
His family was devasted with the tattoos but Brian says the tattoos to him weren't about prejudice and racism they were about heroin and survival. To support his addiction, he needed to be, in his words, ''an active participant in prison culture.''
The California prison is segregated and that meant Brian lived strictly among the white population. ''You come in as a kid, and there are these older dudes you think you respect, spouting ideas, and you kind of listen. I developed a protect-your-own mentality.''
Brian began very invested in the gang while serving time and racked up charges: possession of drugs, possession of a deadly weapon, three assaults on other white inmates. Due to that behavior he spent eight of his 16 years in prison in solitary confinement.
In 2007, as he was turning 27, he was transferred to Pelican Bay State Prison in Northern California, the state's only super-max-security prison.
In 2010, at the age of 30, he lasered off his face tattoos, the swastika on his palm became a spider web; the Nazi lightning bolts became skulls. He did not want any racial insignias on his skin. They did not reflect who he was.
He was however still using heroin and was again arrested and sent to Donovan State Prison in San Diego. Brian finished his term and was released.
In July 2017 he was again arrested and was back up north in Pelican Bay. His cellmate began helping him inject heroin into the back of his neck but one day a needle broke.
''I freaked out on him, really lost it. And he said to me, 'Look at how you are acting right now.'''
Brian says the words got into him and transformed into personal questions he asked himself. Your whole happiness and peace of mind is focused on this dirty-ass hypodermic needle: Is this what you want? Do you want this cell and this bulls'-- powerful persona to be all you are?
He said he thought about the seven murders he'd witnessed out on the yard. He thought about his own knife fights '-- about everything he'd done and been a part of '-- just so he could continue to do heroin. He thought about Megan. Look at all she's done with her life '-- look at what you've done with yours. He says he was finally ready for change.
He enrolled in the new self-improvement and rehabilitation classes the California prison system had begun to offer. Each completed class reduced time from his sentence.
After 24 years of using and selling drugs, Brian quit and has since been clean for 18 months. As of 2019, Brian is enrolled at San Diego City College as part of the Male Community Reentry Program, he's taking classes to finish up the final year of his sentence.
As of his tattoos, Brian says he hates them but he knows they could matter again in the future as he wants to get involved in the juvenile delinquency program, wants to talk to anybody who might be about to jump off the same ledge he did.
''These tattoos, it's gonna get their attention. It's like, dude, you don't think I know what I'm talking about? I want to make a difference. I want to be like Megan.'' he said.
UT-Austin asks AG for 'legal remedies' after threat of conservative student doxxing
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 15:13
Jon Street Managing Editor @JonStreet on Jul 09, 2019 at 12:08 PM EDT The University of Texas-Austin says it has contacted the Texas Attorney General's office about recent threats against conservative students.One leftist student group recently took to Twitter, where it threatened to release the personal information of incoming freshmen seeking to join conservative groups.The University of Texas at Austin says it has contacted the Texas Attorney General's office regarding one leftist group's recent threat against incoming freshmen seeking to join conservative campus groups.
As Campus Reform previously reported, the group that calls itself the Autonomous Student Network threatened to release students' personal information if they chose to become part of a conservative campus group in the fall. The same group previously released the personal information of students who publicly supported then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
"The university has reached out to the Texas Attorney General's Office for guidance on the scope of legal remedies that may be available to protect our students..."
"Hey #UT23! Do you wanna be famous? If you join YCT [Young Conservatives of Texas] or Turning Point USA, you just might be. Your name and more could end up on an article like one of these," the group tweeted in June, referencing its previous doxxing efforts.
[RELATED: Incoming Texas freshmen threatened with doxxing if they join conservative campus groups]
UT-Austin responded to Campus Reform in a statement at the time, saying, "no members of our community should be targeted for their affiliations or political beliefs," but appeared at that time to stop short of taking any formal action.
Now, weeks later, UT-Austin spokesman J.B. Bird has confirmed to Campus Reform that the university has taken further steps.
"The university has reached out to the Texas Attorney General's Office for guidance on the scope of legal remedies that may be available to protect our students, faculty, and staff from these outside threats," Bird said. "We have in the past spoken out against this group's actions to dox our students and members of our own staff."
Referencing the group's doxxing via Twitter in fall 2018, Bird said the university complained to the social networking site, resulting in the Autonomous Student Network's account being suspended.
[RELATED: Communism sympathizers post numbers, jobs of pro-Kavanaugh protesters]
"This time around, we have once again reported to Twitter the new account that threatened to dox UT students. The threat of doxxing is a violation of Twitter's terms of service," Bird added.
At the time of publication of this article, the Twitter account that threatened to dox incoming conservative students was still active and the tweet in question was still visible.
In early 2018, Twitter banned the account of Revolutionary Student Front, an Antifa student group claiming to be affiliated with UT-Austin, after the group said ''bricks belong best thrown at pig heads" and targeted students with mental illness for recruitment.
Neither Twitter nor the Texas attorney general's office responded to requests for comment in time for publication.
Follow the author of this article on Facebook: @JonStreetDC and Twitter: @JonStreet
Build the Wall
Ship Seized In Record $1.3 Billion Cocaine Bust Belongs To JPMorgan
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 15:08
A few weeks ago we reported that around $1 billion worth of cocaine (15,500 kilos) was seized from a container ship at a Philadelphia port after having stopped in Colombia, Chile, Peru, Panama and the Bahamas (subsequently it turned out that it was a record $1.3 billion, or 18,000 kilos worth).
Today we learn that the vessel, the MSC Gayane, is owned by JP Morgan, and has been seized by US authorities according to the Wall Street Journal. The Gayane is the world's second-largest container ship - operated by Switzerland-based Mediterranean Shipping Co, MSC.
$91 million: The amount of cocaine that was supposed to be on that boat in fictional movie ''The Usual Suspects.''$1.3 billion: The amount of cocaine in this boat. https://t.co/Z539qoDKlo
'-- Sam Ro ðŸ' (@SamRo) July 9, 2019"A seizure of a vessel this massive is complicated and unprecedented'--but it is appropriate because the circumstances here are also unprecedented," said US Attorney William McSwain in a statement. "When a vessel brings such an outrageous amount of deadly drugs into Philadelphia waters, my office will pursue the most severe consequences possible against all involved parties in order to protect our district'--and our country."
The Gayane was raided on June 17 by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents who found about 20 tons of cocaine with a street value of $1.3 billion stashed in several containers. The ship had sailed from Freeport in the Bahamas and before that it called in Panama and Peru after starting its voyage in Chile. It was due to sail on to Europe after the U.S. stop.
''MSC remains grateful to the government officials in the U.S. for their proactive work and has offered its continued support, building on a longstanding track record of good cooperation with the authorities,'' an MSC spokesman said in a statement. ''MSC is assisting and cooperating with the authorities as required and the company is not the target of any investigation.'' -Wall Street Journal
The $90 million ship that can carry around 10,000 containers remains anchored at the Delaware River near the Philadelphia port, and will stay there for quite some time according to the Journal.
Eight crew members from Samoa and Serbia were arrested, while many others have been charged in the scheme according to those interviewed. The ship's second officer and another crew member were also charged, and have been accused of helping to bring the contraband aboard.
In February, Customs agents also seized 1.6 tons of cocaine on another MSC vessel, the Carlotta, upon entry into the Port of Newark, NJ.
As a result of the two busts, MSC's Customs-Trade Partnership certification has been temporarily suspended, meaning that the company's cargo will be subject to enhanced scrutiny and can no longer be classified as "low risk." MSC says it expects minimal disruption from the suspension.
"Historically, ships involved in criminal activity are older and beaten up," said Basil Karatzas, CEO of New-York-based Karatzas Marine Advisors & Co. "It is strange that such a modern and expensive vessel is involved in such a blatantly criminal case, like moving 20 tons of cocaine."
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'Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act': Pros and Cons | National Review
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 23:55
(Jonathan Ernst/Reuters) Our current system for green cards '-- the ''immigrant visas'' that confer permanent residence '-- has something called ''per country caps.'' In certain categories, no country may receive more than 7 percent of the available green cards. (See the nuances here .)
This is a stupid system. As David Bier of the Cato Institute has pointed out , a rule of ''7 percent per country'' takes no account of the obvious fact that different countries have different populations. India has 2.5 times the population of the European Union, yet has a green-card cap only 4 percent as high '-- and a wait time for employment visas of ten years vs. nothing. On top of that, as Bier notes in a separate analysis , the Indian and Chinese immigrants hit hardest by the caps tend to have higher skill levels and higher earnings than do immigrants from smaller countries whose caps don't present a real obstacle.
A bill working its way through both houses of Congress, the Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act, would scrap the caps for employment visas and raise them to 15 percent for family visas, without changing the total number of green cards available. (The House is voting today.) But as the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) notes, there are problems with this, too .
After a transition period, Indian immigrants would get the vast majority of the employment green cards for roughly a decade to clear out their backlog. And after that, wait times for everyone would stabilize at seven to eight years .
No one wants to sponsor an immigrant employee who won't start working for more than half a decade, so employment green cards would effectively be reserved for those already here on temporary visas such as H-1Bs '-- which are handed out through a ridiculous lottery system , often to tech workers brought in by outsourcing firms. Nurses would be especially disadvantaged by this change, because they're not even eligible for H-1Bs; Rand Paul has urged a special exception for them .
I don't have a problem with treating immigrants from all countries the same, and I don't mind if we take in fewer nurses and more tech workers, either, as much as I despise the H-1B system through which we select the latter. I might be inclined to vote for the bill if I were in Congress. But the immigration system really needs a thorough overhaul, not just the surgical removal of one tiny contributor to its dysfunctions '-- a surgery that will lead to some complications.
CIS is right: '' Adopting a different green card selection system that chooses the most highly educated and skilled workers would eliminate the need for a per country cap system, and would not reward the exploitative employers who thrive on the existing system.''
Government needs to prepare for United Ireland referendum in case of Brexit crash-out '' Mary Lou McDonald - Independent.ie
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 13:21
Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou McDonald. Photo: PAThe Government needs to prepare for a referendum on United Ireland in case the UK crashes out of the EU, according to Mary Lou McDonald.
Speaking on Today with Sean O'Rourke on RT‰'s Radio One this morning, the Sinn F(C)in leader stated that preparation needs to begin now.
"The government needs to be preparing for the ultimate scenario, where if there is any possibility of an economic border on the island of Ireland, we need to be prepared to take the steps for a referendum in terms of constitutional change," she said.
"The reason we have advanced that position is because we don't want to see a disorderly Brexit.
"Neither do we want us to stumble in a disorderly fashion onto the question and the terrain of constitutional change.
"Public opinion has been clear that they will consider and will want to see the issue of the border addressed."
The British government has set a date of October 31 to leave the European Union.
However, when questioned, Ms McDonald was not able to give a specific timescale of when a referendum on Irish unity may take place.
"The time is now for the government of the day and for the Irish state to create that space that context that framework for an all-island, inclusive conversation on Ireland post-Brexit, on the issue of the border," she continued.
"My timescale is now, I believe the preparations need to happen now.
"I believe there has to be a thoughtful, prepared conversation in advance of that, I cannot offer you a precise date."
Ms McDonald explained that in accordance with the Good Friday Agreement, to create Irish unity, referenda will have to take place both north and south of the border.
"I'm talking about a referendum as and when we are prepared to have one and this could happen very very quickly," she said.
"[The referendum] could happen in a matter of weeks, in some cases days, in most cases in a time-frame of months," she added.
Ms McDonald insisted that both the republic and the north of Ireland must stay in the EU.
"All of the island has to stay within the European Union, we cannot have borders of the past," she said.
"The preparations need to start now."
Online Editors
EBOLA Rat meat seized by US customs border patrol agents - Ebola Outbreak Map
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 01:08
Officials say U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport thwarted a man's attempt to import dozens of pounds of African rat meat.
Customs spokesman Steve Bansbach said Tuesday that the man declared the 32 pounds of meat on June 26 when his flight arrived from the Ivory Coast. The meat was confiscated and destroyed.
Bansbach says the man did not face a fine and continued on his journey because he was forthcoming about what he was bringing into the country. He says customs officials prohibit the entry of African meats to prevent the spread of Ebola virus and other infectious contagious diseases.
So if he is bringing in rat meat to eat how much rats has he already eaten? does the man have ebola virus how will we know they released him from the airport into Chicago.
Ebola virus takes up to 21 days to show up in a person, chicago has been issued a ebola alert take caution avoid all public transport avoid airports and public taxis and uber and any other public area at all costs.
Sign up for Ebola alerts here on Ebola Outbreak Map . Com be safe ebola is spreading thousands infected in Congo, Uganda, Kenya and now ebola may be coming to your home next.
Ebola Outbreak Map ® is registered under the Federal Trademark Act of 1946 with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Any unauthorized use, publication or infringement of this designation without express written permission is prohibited. Such violation is subject to liability for damages, injunctive relief, attorney's fees and other penalties, civil and criminal. The Trademark and Licensing can be purchased. Interest parties may submit their requests via email: support@ebolaoutbreakmap.com
New ECB Boss Christine Lagarde Made A Serious Bitcoin Warning
Mon, 08 Jul 2019 12:40
258,413 views | Jul 7, 2019, 6:17 am
Billy Bambrough Contributor Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own. I write about how bitcoin, crypto and blockchain can change the world.
Bitcoin and other crypto-assets have long divided traditional economists and bankers with some warning over their instability and others praising their ingenuity.
The bitcoin price rebound so far this year has caused some to change sides, though many continue to warn bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies will be a mere flash in the pan.
Earlier this year, Christine Lagarde, who has just been nominated to replace Mario Draghi as president of the European Central Bank (ECB), warned that cryptocurrencies are ''shaking the system'''--something that could signal a change in the ECB's approach to bitcoin and crypto and potentially spur adoption.
International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde has been nominated to take over from European Central Bank boss Mario Draghi'--and her attitude towards bitcoin and cryptocurrencies could be important.
''I think the role of the disruptors and anything that is using distributed ledger technology, whether you call it crypto, assets, currencies, or whatever '... that is clearly shaking the system,'' the 63-year-old Lagarde told CNBC in April.
''We don't want to shake the system so much that we would lose the stability that is needed,'' she added.
Those comments earlier this year follow an interview with Lagarde in 2017 where she warned the power of cryptocurrencies and the underlying blockchain technology should not be dismissed.
Meanwhile, the bitcoin and cryptocurrency community has largely welcomed Lagarde's nomination to the top job at the ECB, with some expecting her openness to crypto to be ''good for the industry.''
''Several people have pointed out to me already is that the next ECB boss is incredibly crypto friendly,'' Mati Greenspan, senior market analyst at brokerage eToro wrote in a note to clients this week. ''Indeed, Christine Lagarde who is set to replace Mario Draghi on 1 November is extremely pro digital assets.''
''Not bitcoin, of course, but she has advocated already for state-backed cryptocurrencies as well as settlement tokens like XRP and JPM coin. We can expect that someone so crypto friendly in such a position will be good for the industry as a whole.''
The bitcoin price has been charging higher so far this year, pushed on by tech company interest in crypto and blockchain.
Lagarde appears to have a different opinion of bitcoin and crypto to that of outgoing ECB president Mario Draghi, who earlier this year said cryptocurrencies are not currencies, but ''highly risky'' assets, distancing the ECB and other central banks from crypto experimentation and the responsibility of regulating cryptocurrencies.
Elsewhere, Lagarde's background as a politician has caused some to predict she will take a radically different approach to running the ECB than that of her predecessors, all of whom have been traditionally trained economists over the ECB's 21-year history.
As the likes of social media giant Facebook and Wall Street banks including J.P. Morgan get stuck into bitcoin, blockchain and cryptocurrencies, it will become more difficult for institutions like the ECB to sideline them'--and Lagarde might find bitcoin and crypto requires more of her attention than she expects.
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Twitter. I am a journalist with significant experience covering technology, finance, economics, and business around the world. As the founding editor of Verdict.co.uk I reported'... Read More
I am a journalist with significant experience covering technology, finance, economics, and business around the world. As the founding editor of Verdict.co.uk I reported on how technology is changing business, political trends, and the latest culture and lifestyle. I have covered the rise of bitcoin and cryptocurrency since 2012 and have charted its emergence as a niche technology into the greatest threat to the established financial system the world has ever seen and the most important new technology since the internet itself. I have worked and written for CityAM, the Financial Times, and the New Statesman, amongst others. Follow me on Twitter @billybambrough or email me on billyATbillybambrough.com.Disclosure: I occasionally hold some small amount of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Read Less
Green New Deal
My flagged Tedx talk about climate change - De Staat van het Klimaat
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 11:05
Recently I gave my first Tedx talk during Tedx Roermond. Roermond is a city in the south of The Netherlands. The experience was quite interesting. The motto of Ted is ''ideas worth spreading''. Apparently not all ideas are worth spreading, because soon after the organisation of Tedx Roermond sent my name and a short description of my ideas to the TED headquarters they received a rather threatening email back that the ultimate consequence could be that they would lose their Tedx license. Kudos to the organisation of Tedx Roermond that they persisted in scheduling my talk and also in uploading it.
The talk is online, however with the following note from TED:''NOTE FROM TED: We've flagged this talk, which was filmed at a TEDx event, because it appears to fall outside TEDx's curatorial guidelines.The sweeping claims and assertions made in this talk regarding climate change only represent the views of the speaker and are not corroborated by scientific evidence.''
This '' ''The sweeping claims'' '' is all rather amusing.
In preparing my talk I wrote down what I wanted to say. That version (not a transcript) differs of course from the final talk I gave in Roermond. The talk is meant to be understandable for a broad audience. Below is the written version of my talk.
Tedx speakers are not allowed to be given a speaking fee, so you have to do all the preparation in your own time. If people appreciate the talk they might consider using the donation button. Thanks!
Marcel Crok, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Tedx Roermond, Marcel Crok, December 14, 2018
I am going to talk about two different worlds today, the world of history and the world of the future. In the world of the past we can measure, observe, count, archive etc. The world of the future we can explore by guessing, by extrapolation and by modelling.
I studied chemistry, I then decided to become a science journalist. Late 2004 the editor in chief of the popular science magazine I worked for asked me to look into the famous hockey stick graph. [slide 1]
Slide 1: the original hockey stick graph, Mann et al. 1998.
I had never written about global warming, so it was my first article on the topic.
This graph played a very prominent role in the third IPCC report and was displayed six times in the report.
The graph shows a reconstruction of the temperature, based mainly on tree rings and other climate indicators, on the Northern Hemisphere since the year 1000. It suggests the temperature didn't vary much for centuries until 1900, and then accelerates. What is so special about 1900? It is the period we are starting to use fossil fuels and therefore emitting CO2.
I did what science journalists do in such a case, I delved into the story. Two Canadians, both 'outsiders', had done a lot of audit work on the graph and I decided to contact them. Their story was fascinating and after two years of struggling they found out what was wrong with the graph. They discovered there was a crucial error in the statistics. As a result, even if you used computer generated noise, the hockey stick curve would appear.
They published this in a scientific paper and I had the scoop of their work in the media. We translated the article and published it both in our own magazine Natuurwetenschap & Techniek as in the Canadian newspaper the Financial Post.
It was my first article on climate change ever and right away I was in the middle of not only the Dutch climate debate but even the international debate. The article won an award, but I was also criticized, by KNMI for example, who said publicly my article was ''nonsense''. I was also immediately branded as a ''climate sceptic'', even by fellow science journalists.
The arguments of the critics were not difficult to refute and the work of the two Canadians stands firmly to this day. I was intrigued by the quite aggressive and also defensive reaction of the climate scientists. Up to this day the criticism of the Canadians has never been fully addressed by the climate science community or the IPCC. Wasn't this about the progress of science?
I think if climate scientists in The Netherlands and abroad had accepted the criticism of the two Canadians and had corrected their graph, I would have moved on to other topics. But now I became really fascinated and also persistent. If climate change is supposed to be so important, but the science seems to lack self-correction, what about other claims in the climate debate? I decided to quit my job and work fulltime on the climate issue and I have done so ever since.
A broken hockey stick graph doesn't mean that global warming can't be a problem. So, let's look at the evidence.
At first sight the evidence is pretty convincing. CO2 is a greenhouse gas and therefore has a tendency to warm up the planet. Is CO­2 increasing? Yes. [slide 2]
Is this caused by burning fossil fuels and other human activities? Although some scientists still question this, I would say yes.
Is the earth warming? Absolutely [slide 3].
Now comes the hard part. Correlation doesn't prove causation. How do we know that the increase in CO2 caused the recent warming? Well, we don't know. It's fair to say that the IPCC claims it is most likely that all the warming is caused by greenhouse gases. But there is no way to prove this in a way you prove Newton's law [slide 4] for example.
We only have one earth and you cannot do repeated experiments with it, like with Newton's apples falling from a tree. We can only observe the changes that have taken place and try to make sense of them and that's what climate scientists do. But this approach has limitations.
The IPCC feels pretty certain '' they call it extremely likely '' that most of the warming since 1950 is caused by CO2 and other greenhouse gases. The evidence for this claim comes mainly from simulations with climate models. Climate models are huge computer programs that try to simulate the whole climate. It's quite an accomplishment of the science community, and IPCC nowadays uses the results of around 30 models. These model simulations show that if you don't use greenhouse gases, the models can't replicate the warming since the mid seventies till now. [slide 5]
Slide 5: GCM simulations with only natural forcings (right) and all forcings (left). Source: IPCC AR4 report.
The figure on the right shows what happens if you use only natural influences in the models, mainly changes in the sun and volcanic activity. The models can't replicate the recent warming. With both natural and anthropogenic factors (figure left), the models do '' at first sight '' a very reasonable job to replicate the recent warming. The evidence of the IPCC can thus also be expressed as: our models can only explain the recent warming with CO2 and other greenhouse gases.
However, if you look carefully in the next panel [slide 6] you see it mentions an early warming period between 1915 and 1945.
Source: https://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/2015/04/16/climate-naysayers-are-giving-climate-skeptics-a-bad-name/ (IPCC graph annotated by Bob Tisdale)
The models, represented by the thick red line, are not able to replicate this early warming that was of about the same magnitude as the warming between 1975 and 2000. So the same models that are used to 'prove' that humans caused the recent warming fail to reproduce a warming period earlier in the century. This of course weakens the evidence.
What is going on here? There still is no clear explanation for the early warming period and IPCC reports say very little about it. A logical candidate is what scientists call the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation [slide 7], the AMO.
Slide 7: the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation index.
It's a quasi-periodic warming and cooling phase of the Atlantic Ocean that influences global temperature. The AMO's influence is evident in the pattern of global temperature changes. So, it contributes to the warming in both the early and the late warming periods. However, climate models are unable to capture this behaviour. And scientists are still uncertain what causes the AMO.
Now here is what according to me has happened. The climate modellers of course try to replicate historical changes in the Earth's global temperature because this has become the main indicator for global warming and is a key measure used to judge their models. They manage to simulate both the recent warming and the lack of warming in the middle of last century with a combination of greenhouse gases and aerosols, which are air pollutants. However, both the mid-century flat temperature and the late century warming were partly caused by natural oscillations of the climate system. So, the models more or less replicated the post-1950 global temperature record, but for the wrong reasons.
In order to get more confidence in the models, it helps if they do well when they predict the future. Unfortunately, the climate models don't do so well in this respect. If we take the period since 1979, the so-called satellite era, climate models already overestimate the observed warming by about 30 to 35%, despite part of the observed warming likely being caused by the AMO upswing. The difference is even larger in the tropical troposphere. [slide 8]
Slide 8: source John Christy and Roy Spencer.
Now if we have to summarize the global climate debate in one graph, it could be this one. Mainstream climate scientists don't like it and try to explain away the differences it shows. Sceptics see it as evidence the models are 'oversensitive', that means, overestimating the warming effect of CO2.
Over the last few years the evidence for models being oversensitive has been piling up. Only in this decade has the increase in temperature and greenhouse gases since about 1850 become large enough, and the understanding of the influence of aerosols sufficiently good, to estimate with any confidence the sensitivity of the climate based on observations.
The main conclusion from these so-called observational estimates, and I share those, is that observations indicate a much less sensitive climate than the climate models. This is really good news. It means we will get considerably less warming in the future even if CO2 emissions will continue to rise, which is to be expected, since large parts of the world are still developing their economies and cannot do that without fossil fuels.
ExtremesAnother topic of great societal importance is the occurrence of extremes. That the climate is getting more extreme, is a message we hear almost on a daily basis in the media. But is this so? It might surprise you but for the most consequential extremes in terms of damage and victims, the answer is a clear no. Hurricanes, floods and droughts have not gotten worse because of climate change. Here an example of trends in droughts [slide 9].
Slide 9: Hao et al, Nature (2014), https://www.nature.com/articles/sdata20141
And here for hurricanes [slide 10].
The number of people dying from natural disasters has declined dramatically in the past century [slide 11].
Slide 11: Our World in Data, https://ourworldindata.org/natural-disasters
This has everything to do with reduction in poverty. Better off people are less vulnerable for weather extremes.
The financial damage caused by extremes has increased but this is mainly because we have more and wealthier people so there is more property to be damaged. If you correct for this, there is no trend left, or even a slightly decreasing one [slide 12].
Slide 12: source Roger Pielke Jr.
Sea levelFor us in Holland, sea level has always been a huge topic. We have experienced terrible floods in the past, for example in 1421, when the Saint Elisabeth floods killed an estimated 10,000 people. More recently of course we all remember the floods in Sealand in 1953 which killed almost 2,000 people. The sea level has been rising for the last 150 years or so, both globally and along our coast, but the rise has been remarkably steady throughout this period. [slide 13]
Slide 13: sea level rise based on tide gauges (blue) and satellite measurements (red). The rise in CO2 concentrations on the right.
You would expect an acceleration of the sea level rise after World War II when CO2 emissions start to increase rapidly. But so far, the evidence for this is weak. Satellite data show a somewhat quicker rise than historical tide gauges, but it is unclear whether tide gauges confirm this. But even the rise measured by satellites is at the bottom end of climate model scenarios.
GreeningThe last thing I want to mention is the greening of the earth. [slide 14]
Slide 14: Donohue et al. (2013), GRL
What are you saying? Yes, the earth is getting greener and indeed, CO2 is causing this. After all, as you all know, CO2 is plant food, so more CO2 in the air means plants are growing faster and better. This also applies to food production. Last week Dutch climate economist Richard Tol said in newspaper De Telegraaf that for this reason climate change so far has probably been beneficial.
DoomsdayMy next book will be titled ''Is it really 5 minutes before midnight?'' As I have just explained, there are many good reasons to think it isn't, even if you accept, just like the IPCC, that all of the warming we have experienced is caused by CO2. The only exception is that I have more faith in observations than in climate models. Or in terms of the past and the future, I prefer to rely mainly on the past and I believe the past is not very alarming.
Nevertheless, in the media climate change is portrayed as the biggest threat of humanity. There literally exists a doomsday clock [slide 15] that currently says it's 2 minutes before 12. This picture is from 2016.
Slide 15: The Doomsday Clock in 2016, https://thebulletin.org/doomsday-clock/
Where does this idea of doom and gloom come from? As you know, in Paris in 2015 all countries agreed that global warming from preindustrial levels should stay below 2 degrees Celsius. Now there is actually very little science behind the two degrees target but it is a hard political reality. The IPCC makes projections based on climate scenarios and if you take these seriously, then we will go over the 2 degrees threshold later this century. [slide 16]
Slide 16: IPCC scenarios, published in the AR5 report (2013).
This is the main reason policy makers claim we are running out of time.
However, these projections are based on the same oversensitive climate models, we just discussed. The British scientist Nic Lewis, who published papers with observational estimates for climate sensitivity, recently calculated that the IPCC projections for these scenarios probably overestimate the warming in the 21st century by a factor of approaching two. I joked on twitter that the people in Katowice this week, who are doing climate negotiations, should take a good break and read Nic's post. It's good news, ladies and gentlemen, we have more time to get rid of fossil fuels.
Before I finish with some words about policy, I want to show this figure which actually is a good summary of our age. [slide 17]
This graph shows we live in a glorious age. Normally if a species explodes in numbers, this will lead to food shortage and starvation. Humans went from 1 to 7 billion in two centuries. And at the same time we have become much wealthier and healthier and we live longer. Yes, CO2 went up as a result of this development, which was intimately linked to harnessing energy from fossil fuels. There is no reason to believe, in my opinion, that CO2 can seriously change this glorious age.
However, I do believe that our policies in reaction to climate change can do serious harm. As they say, the cure can be worse than the disease. [slide 18]
In France we have seen huge protests in the past weeks, organised by the yellow vests. The reason for their protests was a 7 cent tax increase on a liter of diesel. Six people died so far, hundreds are injured. The most famous quote from the protestors: ''The elites are talking about the end of the world while we're talking about the end of the month''.
In The Netherlands we learned this week that the energy bill for an average household will increase by around 300 euros in 2019. This is largely the result of climate and energy policies. A recent survey asked people how much they wanted to pay per month for climate policies. 30% said nothing at all, 23% said between 1 and 10 euros. Next year's increase is already higher than this and this is only the beginning.
SocietyNow what does this all mean for our personal life? People might be surprised to learn that I live as ''green'' as one could possibly live. I never had a car, I do everything by bike in Amsterdam. I came here by train. My daughter is the first junior bicycle mayor in the world. But is this because of climate change? No. This is just the lifestyle I like given my circumstances, I live in the centre of Amsterdam.
But there is no need to feel guilty if one owns a car.
Unfortunately, the positive view on the climate issue that I told you today is totally absent in government circles. You could say that climate negotiators live in a parallel universe that is built on the climate models. Perhaps this is the key element for fathoming the discrepancy between the virtual world of unrealistic models and the world you and I live in.
We as human beings should take care of our world in a meaningful way. This is a daily process that we need to figure out here and now, one step at a time. The envisioned grand and utopian future as modelled for us, not with us, spawns a dystopian threat we all know too well from the 20th century.
Politicians often think they can engineer society. Our current political leaders now even believe they can manage the climate. This is a dangerous utopian vision for which the bill is handed over to the citizens.
Thank youMarcel Crok, science writer
Big Pharma
U.S. judge strikes down Trump administration rule requiring drug prices in TV ads
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 12:29
By Tina Bellon and Nate Raymond
(Reuters) - A federal judge on Monday dealt a blow to the Trump administration by striking down a new rule that would have forced pharmaceutical companies to include the wholesale prices of their drugs in television advertising.
U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta in Washington sided with drugmakers Merck & Co Inc, Eli Lilly and Co and Amgen Inc by halting the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) rule from taking effect on Tuesday as planned.
Mehta in his ruling set aside the entire rule as invalid, saying the HHS lacked authority from the U.S. Congress to compel drug manufacturers to disclose list prices.
"It is outrageous that an Obama appointed judge sided with big PhRMA to keep high drug prices secret from the American people, leaving patients and families as the real victims," White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement, referring to President Donald Trump's Democratic predecessor, Barack Obama.
PhRMA, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, is the largest industry lobbying group.
HHS Secretary Alex Azar announced the rule on May 8, saying that forcing drugmakers to disclose their prices in direct-to-consumer TV advertising could help drive down skyrocketing prescription drug costs if the companies were embarrassed by them or afraid they would scare away customers.
The rule was originally suggested in May 2018 as part of Trump's "blueprint" to lower prescription drug costs for U.S. consumers.
The judge said such disclosures could well be an effective tool in halting the rising cost of prescription drugs. "But no matter how vexing the problem of spiraling drug costs may be, HHS cannot do more than what Congress has authorized," Mehta concluded.
Under the rule, the wholesale, or list, price would be included if it was $35 or more for a month's supply or the usual course of therapy. HHS said the 10 most commonly advertised drugs had list prices of $488 to $16,938 per month or for a usual course of therapy.
Many drugmakers have opposed the rule. PhRMA said the list prices could be confusing for patients and discourage them from seeking medical care.
Merck, Eli Lilly and Amgen filed their lawsuit alongside the Association Of National Advertisers trade group on June 14, arguing the rule would confuse consumers by forcing them to disclose a price irrelevant to patients with insurance.
Drugmakers have long argued that list prices do not reflect the actual cost of drugs as they do not take into account discounts and rebates negotiated with health insurers and pharmacy benefit managers to ensure patient access to the medicines.
The lawsuit alleged that HHS lacked authority to issue the rule and that it violated their free-speech rights under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
The U.S. Justice Department defended the rule in court, saying it met a standard the U.S. Supreme Court set in 1985, when it held the government could force advertisers to disclose factual, non-controversial information.
(Reporting by Tina Bellon in New York and Nate Raymond in Boston; Additional reporting by Roberta Rampton in Washington; Editing by Bill Berkrot and Peter Cooney)
Seth Rich
Conspiracyland: The Russian connection to Seth Rich conspiracies
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 13:51
WASHINGTON '-- In the summer of 2016, Russian intelligence agents secretly planted a fake report claiming that Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich was gunned down by a squad of assassins working for Hillary Clinton, giving rise to a notorious conspiracy theory that captivated conservative activists and was later promoted from inside President Trump's White House, a Yahoo News investigation has found.
Russia's foreign intelligence service, known as the SVR, first circulated a phony ''bulletin'' '-- disguised to read as a real intelligence report '--about the alleged murder of the former DNC staffer on July 13, 2016, according to the U.S. federal prosecutor who was in charge of the Rich case. That was just three days after Rich, 27, was killed in what police believed was a botched robbery while walking home to his group house in the Bloomingdale neighborhood of Washington, D.C., about 30 blocks north of the Capitol.
The purported details in the SVR account seemed improbable on their face: that Rich, a data director in the DNC's voter protection division, was on his way to alert the FBI to corrupt dealings by Clinton when he was slain in the early hours of a Sunday morning by the former secretary of state's hit squad.
Yet in a graphic example of how fake news infects the internet, those precise details popped up the same day on an obscure website, whatdoesitmean.com, that is a frequent vehicle for Russian propaganda. The website's article, which attributed its claims to ''Russian intelligence,'' was the first known instance of Rich's murder being publicly linked to a political conspiracy.
''To me, having a foreign intelligence agency set up one of my decedents with lies and planting false stories, to me that's pretty outrageous,'' said Deborah Sines, the former assistant U.S. attorney in charge of the Rich case until her retirement last year. ''Maybe other people don't think it's that outrageous. I did ... once it became clear to me that this was coming from the SVR, then that triggers a lot of very serious [questions about] 'What do I do with this?'''
The previously unreported role of Russian intelligence in creating and fostering one of the most insidious conspiracy theories to arise out of the 2016 election is disclosed in ''Yahoo News presents: Conspiracyland,'' a six-part series by the news organization's podcast ''Skullduggery'' that debuts this week on the third anniversary of Rich's murder.
The Russian effort to exploit Rich's tragic death didn't stop with the fake SVR bulletin. Over the course of the next two and a half years, the Russian government-owned media organizations RT and Sputnik repeatedly played up stories that baselessly alleged that Rich, a relatively junior-level staffer, was the source of Democratic Party emails that had been leaked to WikiLeaks. It was an idea first floated by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who on Aug. 9, 2016, announced a $20,000 reward for information about Rich's murder, saying '-- somewhat cryptically '-- that ''our sources take risks.''
At the same time, online trolls working in St. Petersburg, Russia, for the Internet Research Agency (IRA) '-- the same shadowy outfit that conducted the Russian social media operation during the 2016 election '-- aggressively boosted the conspiracy theories. IRA-created fake accounts, masquerading as those of American citizens or political groups, tweeted and retweeted more than 2,000 times about Rich, helping to keep the bogus claims about his death in the social media bloodstream, according to an analysis of a database of Russia troll accounts by Yahoo News.
Speaking publicly about the case for the first time, Sines, the former prosecutor, said that the Russian conspiracy-mongering vastly complicated her efforts to solve the murder by forcing her and the Washington, D.C., police department to investigate a blizzard of false allegations in order to make sure there was nothing to any of them. ''To waste your time investigating BS is just horrible,'' said Sines.
The Russian-inspired conspiracy theories also have had a devastating effect on the Rich family, especially after the theories migrated to alt-right websites and, ultimately, primetime Fox News shows. As they did so, there were repeated suggestions by alt-right commentators that the DNC staffer's parents and brother were concealing information about his conduct.
''You're used, you're lied to, you're a pawn in your own son's death,'' said Mary Rich, Seth Rich's mother, who, along with her husband, Joel, was interviewed for the podcast. ''I wish they had the chance to experience the hell we have gone through. Because this is worse than losing my son the first time. This is like losing him all over again.''
Mary Rich, mother of Seth Rich, at a press conference in Washington, Aug. 1, 2016. (Photo: Michael Robinson Chavez/Washington Post via Getty Images)
In her efforts to better understand where the conspiracy theories were coming from, Sines used her security clearance to access copies of two SVR intelligence reports about Seth Rich that had been intercepted by U.S. intelligence officials. She later wrote a memo documenting the Russian role in fomenting the conspiracy theories that she sent to the Justice Department's national security division, and personally briefed special counsel Robert Mueller's prosecutors on her findings.
''It appeared to me that it was a very clear campaign to deflect an ongoing federal criminal investigation,'' Sines said. ''So then you have to look at why is Russia doing this? '... It's not rocket science before you add it up and you go, 'Oh, if Seth is the leaker to WikiLeaks '-- it doesn't have anything to do with the Russians. So of course Russia's interest in doing this is incredibly transparent.'' The Russian strategy, Sines said, was diabolically simple: ''Let's blame it on Seth Rich. He's a very convenient target.''
The ''Conspiracyland'' podcast traces the spread of the conspiracy theories about Rich. From their origins as a Russian disinformation plant, the bogus theories about his murder emerged as a persistent theme on alt-right websites and then were fanned by right-wing conspiracy entrepreneurs such as Alex Jones of Infowars and Matt Couch, the founder of an Arkansas-based group called America First Media, which bills itself as ''the leading investigative team in America in the Seth Rich murder.''
Along the way, the idea that Rich was murdered in retaliation for leaking DNC emails to WikiLeaks was championed by multiple allies of Trump, including Roger Stone. The same day Assange falsely hinted that Rich may have been his source for DNC emails, Stone tweeted a picture of Rich, calling the late DNC staffer in a tweet ''another dead body in the Clinton's wake.'' He then added: ''Coincidence? I think not.''
Roger Stone at Trump Tower, Dec. 6, 2016. (Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Within months, the Rich conspiracy story was also being quietly promoted inside Trump's White House. Questions about whether the White House pushed the conspiracy theories about Rich have been raised periodically over the last two and a half years '-- and were consistently denied by White House officials. But the Yahoo News investigation uncovered new evidence that the false claim that Rich was the victim of a political assassination was advanced by one of the White House's most senior officials at the time.
''Huge story '... he was a Bernie guy '... it was a contract kill, obviously,'' then-White House chief strategist Steve Bannon texted to a CBS ''60 Minutes'' producer about Rich on March 17, 2017, according to some of Bannon's text messages that were reviewed by Yahoo News. (Bannon did not respond to requests for comment.)
The conspiracy claims reached their zenith in May 2017 '-- the same week as Mueller's appointment as special counsel in the Russia probe '-- when Fox News' website posted a sensational story claiming that an FBI forensic report had discovered evidence on Rich's laptop that he had been in communication with WikiLeaks prior to his death. Sean Hannity, the network's primetime star, treated the account as major news on his nightly broadcast, calling it ''explosive'' and proclaiming it ''might expose the single biggest fraud, lies, perpetrated on the American people by the media and the Democrats in our history.''
Steve Bannon in an interview with host Sean Hannity, on the set of Fox News Channel's Hannity, in New York in October 2017. (Photo: Craig Ruttle/AP)
Among Hannity's guests that week who echoed his version of events was conservative lawyer Jay Sekulow. Although neither he nor Hannity mentioned it, Sekulow had just been hired as one of Trump's lead lawyers in the Russia investigation. ''It sure doesn't look like a robbery,'' said Sekulow on Hannity's show on May 18, 2017, during a segment devoted to the Rich case. ''There's one thing this thing undercuts is this whole Russia argument, [which] is such subterfuge,'' he added.
In fact, the Fox story was a ''complete fabrication,'' said Sines, who consulted with the FBI about the Fox News claims. There was ''no connection between Seth and WikiLeaks. And there was no evidence on his work computer of him downloading and disseminating things from the DNC.'' (A spokeswoman for the FBI's Washington field office said the office had never opened an investigation into Rich's murder, considering it a local crime for which the Washington Metropolitan Police Department had jurisdiction. Andrew McCabe, the FBI's acting director at the time, said in an interview that he reached out to his agents after he heard about the conspiracy stories about Rich and was told, ''There's no there there.'')
After eight days of controversy, Fox News was forced to retract the story after one of its two key sources, former Washington, D.C., homicide detective Rod Wheeler, backed away from comments he had given the Fox News website reporter Malia Zimmerman and a local Fox affiliate reporter confirming the account. The article, the network said in a statement at the time, ''was not initially subjected to the high degree of editorial scrutiny we require for all our reporting.'' Fox News later announced it was conducting an internal investigation into how the story came to be posted on its website. The results have never been disclosed, and a spokeswoman for Fox News declined to comment, citing ongoing litigation against the news network brought by the Rich family.
Fox News powerhouse Sean Hannity. (Photo: Carolyn Kaster/AP)
But ''Conspiracyland'' quotes a source familiar with the network's investigation saying that Fox executives grew frustrated they were unable to determine the identity of the other, and more important, source for the story: an anonymous ''federal investigator'' whose agency was never revealed. The Fox editors came to have doubts that the person was in fact who he claimed to be or whether the person actually existed, said the source.
In his recent report, Mueller briefly addressed the questions about Rich, writing that Assange had ''implied falsely'' that the DNC staffer was the source of the party emails leaked to WikiLeaks. His comments about Rich, Mueller wrote, ''were apparently designed to obscure'' how WikiLeaks really got them: from Guccifer 2.0, an online persona created by Russia's military intelligence agency, the GRU, who sent the group an encrypted file of DNC material on July 14, 2016, four days after Rich's death.
In the meantime, the barrage of conspiracy theories '-- implying that Rich was a leaker who betrayed his DNC colleagues '-- has spawned multiple lawsuits that are still ongoing. Joel and Mary Rich have filed a defamation lawsuit against Fox News and Ed Butowsky, a Dallas financier who played a key behind-the-scenes role in the Zimmerman story. Aaron Rich, Seth's older brother, has sued both Butowsky and Couch, the America First Media founder.
(Fox News, Butowsky and Couch have all denied the claims; the cable news network has argued in court papers that its reporting, while retracted, is a ''classic case'' of journalism protected by the First Amendment. The Rich family's claim was initially rejected by a federal judge in New York on the grounds, in part, that the parents could not sue for the defamation of their deceased son. The parents are now appealing that decision. Mary Rich, in an interview for the podcast, said the fact that Fox retracted the false story is irrelevant. ''It's blasted across America with Fox and Hannity,'' she said. ''All they've done is taken it down, but it's still up there on the internet. This can't be retracted the way they did it.'')
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. (Photo: Carl Court/Getty Images)
Through interviews with family members and friends, ''Conspiracyland'' tells the story of Seth Rich. A Creighton University graduate from Omaha, Neb., Rich landed a job at the DNC to work on voting rights issues. Friends described him as an outgoing, fun-loving young man '-- he once showed up at a friend's hospital room wearing a polar bear costume '-- who was nonetheless passionate about his job of expanding voting rights.
''I've never encountered someone so genuine in his belief that every American should be able to participate in that political process,'' said Donna Brazile, the former interim chair of the DNC.
Contrary to the conspiracy theorists, Rich was not a disgruntled Bernie Sanders supporter; he never expressed a preference for the Vermont senator in the primary battle with Clinton, according to Pablo Manriquez, a friend and colleague from the DNC, echoing comments made by other friends of his in Washington. Moreover, Rich's job gave him no access to the emails that were on the DNC server, making it unlikely from the start that he could have been the leaker of the internal party communications to WikiLeaks.
After a night of drinking at Lou's City Bar, Rich was walking home in the early hours of July 10, 2016, and on the phone with his girlfriend when he was accosted by two assailants about a block and a half from his home. A fight ensued '-- Rich was found with bruises on his face, knuckles and knees '-- and he was shot twice in the back before the assailants fled. His billfold, watch and other valuables weren't taken. But police quickly concluded that the scenario was most likely that of an attempted robbery that was foiled by Rich's resistance.
The police and Sines, the prosecutor, believe there was good reason to draw that conclusion. In the six weeks prior to Rich's shooting, there had been seven armed robberies in the same neighborhood, causing residents to complain to local police.
''We've had so many holdups on the same corner, with the same method of holdup, where two guys grab the person,'' said Mark Mueller, a neighbor of Rich's (and no relation to the special counsel) who was among the first to rush to the scene the night of the shooting. ''They hold a gun to the head, while one person takes the phone and makes the owner of the phone go into the apps and unarm anything that could be traced.''
Mary Rich and her husband, Joel Rich, with a photo of their son Seth. (Photo: Matt Miller for the Washington Post via Getty Images)
Agitated local residents took their concerns to the police. ''We've had meetings with the police days before this, screaming at the police in our civic association meetings, begging for help,'' said Mueller.
But over the past three years, it is unclear how much progress, if any, the Washington police has made in solving the case. No suspects in Rich's murder have ever been identified, and the case was recently moved to Washington police department's ''major case/cold case'' squad under the direction of a new detective in an effort to bring a fresh set of eyes to a stale case file.
Sines chalks up the lack of progress to what she calls the anti-snitch culture of the streets in Washington, D.C.
''In Washington, D.C., being a witness to a murder can mean a death sentence,'' the former prosecutor said. ''I've lost witnesses that were murdered because they were witnesses. Because they told me what happened. And it's '-- there's a very strong and anti-snitch culture in Washington, D.C., much stronger than it is in some other areas in the country. Add assassination language, Russians, add all those buzzwords, who wants to be a witness in a case like that?''
Nevertheless, even though she is no longer involved, Sines says she is hopeful that the case will ultimately be cracked.
''So I know that someone is going to talk. I know that,'' she said. ''It's a lot easier after a couple of years go by for people to talk about this, because they think they got away with it.''
Sines said she believes there are two culprits at large '-- a shooter and an ''aider and abettor'' '-- and she suspects they are connected to drug-dealing activity in nearby housing projects. ''I'm convinced one or both of them will eventually be brought to justice.''
In a recent interview, Seth's father, Joel, said he was told in a call with the new prosecutor '-- who replaced Sines and the new detective '-- that the investigation into his son's murder remains active. The prosecutor and the detective talk about it every day, Joel said he was told.
But while they wait for signs the murderers will be arrested, the Riches live with a painful reality that they say is reaffirmed on a near daily basis by Google alerts: The lies about their son's death continue to circulate in the dark recesses of the internet, a powerful reminder that in the new world of social media, even the most discredited of conspiracy theories have a shelf life that never ends.
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VIDEO - Labor Secretary Acosta News Conference | C-SPAN.org
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 12:37
July 10, 2019 2019-07-10T14:33:36-04:00 https://images.c-span.org/Files/7a4/20190710143400014_hd.jpg Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta held a news conference to explain and defend a 2008 plea deal he oversaw for financier Jeffrey Epstein, who was charged in federal court with sex trafficking. The secretary said, at the time, state prosecutors would have allowed Epstein to ''walk free'' if his office at the time -- the U.S. attorney for Florida -- had not intervened. He argued the unusual step resulted in jail time for Mr. Epstein and his mandatory registration as a sex offender.Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta held a news conference to explain and defend a 2008 plea deal he oversaw for financier Jeffrey Epstein, who was'... read more
Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta held a news conference to explain and defend a 2008 plea deal he oversaw for financier Jeffrey Epstein, who was charged in federal court with sex trafficking. The secretary said, at the time, state prosecutors would have allowed Epstein to ''walk free'' if his office at the time -- the U.S. attorney for Florida -- had not intervened. He argued the unusual step resulted in jail time for Mr. Epstein and his mandatory registration as a sex offender. close
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VIDEO - "Exposing Mike Cernovich's Lies About the Jeff Epstein Case... https://t.co/1sieByHPYE"
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 11:06
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VIDEO - Climate cannot be experimented on | Marcel Crok | TEDxRoermond - YouTube
Thu, 11 Jul 2019 11:05
VIDEO - Far-right conspiracy theory that Robert Mueller is to blame for Jeffrey Epstein's prior sweetheart deal makes the jump to Fox News
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 22:29
A baseless conspiracy theory that claims Robert Mueller helped facilitate disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein's 2008 non-prosecution agreement was pushed by far-right conspiracy theorists before making the jump to Fox News.
Epstein, who was arrested over the weekend and charged with new federal sex trafficking crimes, was able to obtain a non-prosecution agreement in 2008 as part of a deal that saw him serve just 13 months in a Florida county jail as a consequence of his sexual abuse of children. The deal -- which was recently ruled an illegal violation of the Crime Victims' Rights Act -- was overseen and approved by then-federal prosecutor Alex Acosta, who is currently President Donald Trump's labor secretary.
Acosta has come under significant fire for his participation in the agreement, and far-right conspiracy theorists have sought to shift the blame for how the federal government handled Epstein's previous case to Mueller, who was FBI director at the time. But Mueller had no involvement in the agreement, as The Daily Dot explained:
Robert Mueller was FBI director at the time of Epstein's plea, but there's no evidence that Mueller personally had anything to do with Epstein's case or investigation, much less his sentencing. In the end, it was Acosta, in his capacity with the U.S. Attorney's office, who gave Epstein his light sentence, not the FBI, because the FBI doesn't handle the prosecution of offenders. It wouldn't be Mueller's call to make.
Nonetheless, the effort to shift the blame away from the Trump administration and toward Mueller, who is scheduled to testify before Congress on July 17 about his special counsel investigation, is now being made on Fox News. When asked about Acosta's involvement during the July 9 broadcast of Outnumbered, Fox News contributor Lawrence Jones deflected the question to baselessly claim that Mueller knew about the plea agreement:
The claim echoed existing far-right conspiracy theories that falsely tie Mueller to Epstein's deal.
During his July 7 broadcast, toxic conspiracy theorist Alex Jones said Epstein ''worked with Robert Mueller to set up thousands of people,'' baselessly suggesting that Mueller was involved with information Epstein turned over to the FBI as part of his non-prosecution agreement. In targeting Mueller, Jones sought to absolve Trump as well as Epstein attorney and pro-Trump pundit Alan Dershowitz, whom a victim has sued for being, as the lawsuit puts it, ''a participant in sex trafficking, including as one of the men to whom Epstein lent out Plaintiff for sex'':
Jones also said during his July 8 broadcast that Epstein ''was a procurer for Robert Mueller and others of blackmail'':
(Dating back to at least July 2018, Jones has attempted to connect Epstein to Mueller, including in an infamous video in which he appeared to threaten to shoot the former special counsel.)
Similarly, TurningPoint USA's Charlie Kirk falsely connected Mueller to Epstein's non-prosecution agreement on Twitter:
The claim has also been pushed by proponents of the QAnon conspiracy theory.
Alex Kaplan contributed research to this post.
VIDEO - Alex Jones threatens Mueller: 'You're going to get it, or I'm going to die trying' | TheHill
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 22:16
Infowars host Alex Jones on Monday issued a threat toward special counsel Robert Mueller Robert (Bob) Swan MuellerTop Republican considered Mueller subpoena to box in Democrats Kamala Harris says her Justice Dept would have 'no choice' but to prosecute Trump for obstruction Dem committees win new powers to investigate Trump MORE , accusing him of covering up sex crimes and suggesting he wanted to duel the former FBI chief in an imaginary gunfight.
Jones made the comments on an episode of "The Alex Jones Show," first reported by Media Matters.
"I mean, Mueller covered up for a decade for [Jeffrey] Epstein kidnapping kids, flying them on sex planes, some kids as young as seven years old reportedly, with big perverts raping them to frame people," Jones says in the video, referring to billionaire sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who was convicted of sex crimes after being accused of soliciting multiple teenage girls as young as 13.
"Mueller is a monster, man," Jones continues in the video. "People say, 'Well, God, aren't you scared of him?' I'm scared of not manning up. I'm constantly in fear that I'm not being a real man, and I'm not doing what it takes, and I'm not telling the truth."
Jones then pivoted to an analogy where Mueller and he were dueling cowboys, meeting "politically" at high noon for a shootout.
"That's a demon I will take down, or I'll die trying. So that's it. It's going to happen, we're going to walk out in the square, politically, at high noon, and he's going to find out whether he makes a move man, make the move first, and then it's going to happen," Jones said, miming a pistol with his hand.
"It's not a joke. It's not a game. It's the real world. Politically. You're going to get it, or I'm going to die trying, bitch. Get ready. We're going to bang heads. We're going to bang heads."
It's not clear if Jones's words could constitute a transmitted threat against Mueller, who is currently leading the special counsel investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign. Threatening a federal official with violence is a class C or D felony, punishable by up to five or 10 years in prison.
Jones, a far-right-wing supporter of President Trump Donald John TrumpS&P 500 breaks 3,000 for first time Strife between Seoul and Tokyo makes Kim Jong Un's DMZ victory even more valuable Chamber of Commerce hires former Giuliani, Cruz campaign aide MORE who has frequently accused Democrats of being "demon possessed," has accused Mueller's investigation of being the head of a deep-state conspiracy aimed at taking down Trump's presidency.
Jones has backed a number of conspiracy theories over the years.
The Infowars founder is currently being sued by families of victims of the 2011 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, after which Jones claimed that the attack was a false-flag operation. He is represented by Marc Randazza and Jay Wolman of the Las Vegas''based Randazza Legal Group.
VIDEO - WATCH: Conservative network pushes Alex Acosta to blame Epstein plea deal on Robert Mueller '' Raw Story
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 22:13
2 hours ago
July 10, 2019
The conservative OAN news network on Wednesday suggested that former special counsel Robert Mueller could be implicated in Jeffrey Epstein's original plea deal.
At a press conference, Labor Secretary Alex Acosta defended what has been called a ''sweetheart plea deal'' that let Epstein off with 13 months in county jail. Epstein has been accused of sexually molesting children as young as 14.
Acosta called on OAN's Neil McCabe, who wanted to know who else at the Department of Justice had reviewed the plea deal.
''Did you have any interaction with Robert Mueller at the time?'' McCabe asked hopefully.
Acosta, however, disappointed the reporter.
''I do not have a full list of the individuals that reviewed this matter at main Justice,'' he explained. ''I would refer you to the record. This was 12 years ago.''
Watch the video below from Fox News.
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2020 Election Published
9 mins ago
July 10, 2019
"We cannot sit back and allow Biden to defend the three million deportations and the unprecedented expansion of detention that happened under his watch. We need more from the party that claims to support us."
President Donald Trump's openly xenophobic hardline anti-immigration agenda has brought the United States to a "moment of reckoning" on immigration policies that have been in place for decades, a New Jersey-based advocacy group said Wednesday as it led families whose loved ones were deported in a protest at Joe Biden's campaign headquarters.
Breaking Banner Published
13 mins ago
July 10, 2019
This week, Mississippi state Rep. Robert Foster, who is running for governor, blocked a female reporter from shadowing his campaign unless she was accompanied by a man. He said that he was invoking the "Billy Graham Rule," refusing to be alone with women to protect the sanctity of his marriage '-- a practice also famously followed by Vice President Mike Pence.
Faced with criticism, Foster doubled down on his decision on Wednesday, characterizing it as an expression of his Christian faith:
Breaking Banner Published
15 mins ago
July 10, 2019
Speaking on the assurance of anonymity, one ambassador admitted that the comments about President Donald Trump by U.K. ambassador to the U.S. Kim Darroch could have been said by any of the ambassadors.
That ambassador isn't the only one, however, Axios noted.
"I knew that nothing would remain secret, so I sent them in a most confidential manner," said former French ambassador G(C)rard Araud. "It's what happens when a populist leader takes command in a liberal democracy. These people don't recognize or accept the idea that an ambassador or a bureaucrat could be of any use. They only want to deal with other leaders.''
VIDEO 5mins - Attorney Bradley Edwards Explains the Latest on Jeffrey Epstein's Prosecution - YouTube
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 21:48
VIDEO - Donald Trump Brings Up Bill Clinton Sex Scandal at Debate - YouTube
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 20:54
VIDEO - U.S. Labor Secretary Alex Acosta holds press conference amid calls to resign | LIVE - YouTube
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 19:53
VIDEO - David Rutz on Twitter: "lol @mPinoe dropping the F-bomb to end the speech: "New York City, you're the motherf---ing best!!!!" (New York is OK)'... https://t.co/ZWp5PwO5KP"
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 19:49
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VIDEO - AOC: Pelosi Saddling Me with Work to Keep Me out of Spotlight :: Grabien News
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 17:48
The civil war between the Democratic Party's left flank and extreme left flank is heating up.
Days after Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi mocked Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and trio of her freshmen colleagues '-- Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), and Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) '-- for focusing on Twitter and PR at the expense of legislation, AOC issued another broadside against Pelosi.
"All these people have their public whatever and their Twitter world," Pelosi told the New York Times' Maureen Dowd published Saturday. "But they didn't have any following. They're four people and that's how many votes they got."
Today in an interview with WNYC's ''New Yorker Hour,'' AOC accused Pelosi of intentionally saddling her with work to keep her out of the spotlight.
''I was assigned to some of the busiest committees and four subcommittees,'' AOC said. ''So my hands are full. And sometimes I wonder if they're trying to keep me busy.''
The New York lawmaker had been describing why she declined Pelosi's offer to sit on a standing committee on climate change. AOC said she declined the Speaker's offer after she had refused AOC's demands for what the committee should do.
Asked about how the relationship with Pelosi is generally, AOC deadpanned: ''I think sometimes people think that we have a relationship.''
Here's an excerpt from the exchange:
HOST: ''What's your relationship like with Nancy Pelosi. Tell me how that works, what are the dynamics of it?''
OCASIO-CORTEZ: ''You know, I think sometimes people think that we have this '-- like we have a relationship.'' (Laughter)
HOST: ''Are you saying you don't?''
OCASIO-CORTEZ: ''Not, not particularly, not one that's I think distinguished from anyone else. Like if there's a legislative need, you know. The last time I kind of spoke to her one on one was when she asked me to join the Select Committee on Climate Change.''
HOST: ''What did you say.''
OCASIO-CORTEZ: ''I said no.'' (Laughter)
HOST: ''Why?''
OCASIO-CORTEZ: ''Because I had made very specific requests which I thought were rather reasonable for the Select Committee on Climate Change. I asked that it have a mission to try to draft legislation by 2020 so that '-- so that we essentially have a 2 year mission to put together whether it's a Green New Deal or whether it's some sweeping climate change legislation that '-- that the select committee have a legislative mission. I asked for it to have subpoena power which most committees do. The last '-- the last select committee had subpoena power but now this one doesn't. And I asked for the members who sit on the select committee to not take any fossil fuel money. And none of those requests were accommodated, and so I didn't join the committee.''
HOST: ''Are you better on the outside looking in or the inside looking out?'' [crosstalk]
OCASIO-CORTEZ: ''I think '-- I think I'm better on the outside looking in, on this issue.''
HOST: ''Why is that?''
OCASIO-CORTEZ: ''Because given that none of those standards were met sitting on that committee I would have to own anything '-- I would take responsibility for anything that comes out of that committee. And when the actual my opinion, the structure of it, is compromised in very deep ways, you know it's not '-- I don't think it was like I'm going to take my ball and go home, it's we have a select committee whose mission '-- I'm '-- I was uncertain on who's members take fossil fuel money. You know it's '-- it's beyond just a mere disagreement I think there's a structural problem with it. And so '-- and there are plenty of other caucuses as well that work on climate issues. So I think '-- I think that that ultimately I'm fine with the decision especially given the committee assignments that I was ultimately given, which were very intense and very rigorous. I was assigned to two of some of the busiest committees and four subcommittees so my hands are full, and sometimes I want to they're trying to keep me busy.'' (Laughter)
HOST: ''Well, how did Pelosi react when you turn her down and being on that '--''
OCASIO-CORTEZ: ''She was fine with it. She said OK.''
HOST: ''She thinks you were being '-- one way or another was she annoyed?''
OCASIO-CORTEZ: ''I don't '-- I don't think so.''
HOST: ''She doesn't do annoyance.''
OCASIO-CORTEZ: ''Yeah. I don't think '-- I mean, maybe she '-- she does do slight annoyance but it's not direct or indirect. I don't know. I think this is the thing where it's like '-- forst of all I think leadership, their '-- their primary goal right now is making sure that everyone who want to swing seat comes back. So I think that that's where a lot of their time rightfully I think justifiably is invested in '-- in those relationships.''
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VIDEO - Jeffrey Epstein, a Billionaire Friend of Presidents Trump & Clinton, Arrested for Sex Trafficking - YouTube
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 17:14
VIDEO - Following The Money: An In-Depth Look At Ed Buck's Political Donations '' CBS Los Angeles
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 16:45
February 6, 2019 at 10:43 pmLOS ANGELES (CBSLA) '' Not long ago, Ed Buck was rubbing elbows with some of the Democratic party's biggest stars '' donating tens of thousands of dollars to various candidates and causes.
But now, Buck is under fire from community activists after a second gay black man '' identified as 55-year-old Timothy Dean '' died in his home in January. People gathered twice last month, chanting outside Buck's West Hollywood apartment building.
RELATED: Second Man Dies In WeHo Apartment Of Democratic Donor
Leticia Nixon '' the mother of Gemmel Moore, who died at Buck's apartment in July of 2017 of a drug overdose '' spoke to the crowd.
''We shouldn't even be here. There shouldn't be a second victim,'' she said.
Before the two deaths at his home, Buck was a well-known activist. Originally from Arizona, he reportedly made around $1 million selling a courier company and moved to West Hollywood in the early 90s.
He's often referred to as a wealthy donor. CBSLA's Tom Wait found campaign finance records for federal, state and local donations.
Buck's biggest political investment was for more than $300,000 to his political action committee called Animal PAC. The organization says it was ''formed to represent animal welfare interests throughout California.''
Buck was a well-known animal rights activist. But he has also donated thousands of dollars to various politicians. Many of the donations were made years before the deaths at his home. In many cases, the money was returned to Buck or donated to charities after Moore's death.
RELATED: 'Character Assassination Is Not Going To Happen': Friends React To 2nd Death In Democratic Donor's Apartment
Records dating back to 2009 showed Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti was one of Buck's high-profile recipients, receiving $1,400 in 2016. That money was returned about a month after Moore died.
Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey received $100 from Buck in 2012. Her campaign claims that money was given back in February of 2018.
He gave former California state Senate leader Kevin De Leon $18,700 over several campaigns. A former staffer says most of that money was donated in January of 2018 to a nonprofit that helps domestic violence survivors.
Democratic Congressman Ted Lieu took in $19,400 in state and federal donations from Buck. Lieu's campaign says after the second death at Buck's home, they donated the contributions they received to various charities.
Buck gave Adam Schiff, now chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, $2,700 in 2016. The campaign says the money went to the nonprofit Trevor Project.
West Hollywood Mayor John Duran received $12,500 from Buck in various campaigns in 2012 to 2016. Without offering specifics, he said most of the money was spent and some was donated to charity.
''Every candidate and politician sort of has to find their own way,'' said California State University Northridge Professor Lawrence Becker.
Becker says it's up to the candidates whether or not to return the money. Buck has broken no laws and the donations are perfectly legal.
''In a case where it's a legal donation '' and it just kind of looks bad or seems unethical or something '' no, there's no roadmap, but the best roadmap I would say is good judgement. It starts to become a lot more murky the further back in time you go,'' he said.
Those donations are just a few of the many thousands of dollars Buck has dolled out over the years.
Find more information on Buck's donations to state and federal candidates.
VIDEO - Conspiracy Of Silence Full Documentary - YouTube
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 15:01
VIDEO - Ann Coulter Thinks Epstein Had a ''State Sponsor'' & Was Running a ''Blackmailing'' Operation
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 14:28
Skip to content''Something much bigger is behind this''Conservative commentator Ann Coulter says that sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein had a ''state sponsor'' backing him and that his operation was a way to blackmail powerful men.
During an appearance on 790 KABC, Coulter suggested that Epstein is merely the front man for a far more powerful network.
''Epstein according to both the girls accounts, he wanted them to have sex with powerful men, come back to him and report on it, describe what they wanted what their fetishes were and he had cameras throughout the house so this is obviously for blackmailing purposes,'' said Coulter.
''It just seems to me something much bigger is behind this '-- perhaps a state sponsor '-- powerful enough people '... it just seems to me there's something a very powerful force behind what's going on here and I am still nervous about this not coming to a conclusion, somehow this getting compromised,'' she added.
Coulter said that it remained a mystery as to how Epstein became a billionaire and that the source of his money should be investigated.
Former President Bill Clinton attempted to distance himself from Epstein last night, claiming he only flew on the infamous 'Lolita Express' private jet four times despite flight logs showing at least 26 trips.
As we reported yesterday, speculation is swirling that Epstein may give up names of influential people who used his network in order to secure a maximum prison sentence of no more than five years.
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VIDEO - Air taxis could be the future of commuting
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 14:03
Experts say passenger drones, which will lift and carry commuters where they need to go, will one day put an end to all the traffic below. NBC's Morgan Chesky shares a sneak peek at Lift Aircraft's Hexa machine and the tech that could revolutionize commuting. July 10, 2019
VIDEO - The Rachel Maddow Show 7/9/19 | Rachel Maddow MSNBC News Today July 9, 2019 - YouTube
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 13:53
VIDEO - (1) Anderson Cooper Stun As Megan Rapinoe Offers Message to Trump 'Your Message Is Excluding People' - YouTube
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 12:43
VIDEO - WHAT'S INSIDE? on Twitter: "Warning to @Tesla owners driving through Southern Utah, might not be able to charge. LB needs to get paid.'... "
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 04:15
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VIDEO - Justin Zetzer on Twitter: "@adamcurry Mr Leo Laporte mentions you in the latest Macbreak Weekly 🂠''If you didn't bring enough for everyone...'' 🤣'... https://t.co/DJolIpBolE"
Wed, 10 Jul 2019 04:12
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VIDEO - The Late Capitalism of Fast Food Twitter - YouTube
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 22:31
VIDEO - Washington Post writes on Black Voters, Kamala Harris, and 2020 Election - YouTube
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 22:25
VIDEO - (2) ADCOLOR Conference 2018: Marc Pritchard - YouTube
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 21:59
VIDEO - Suit Accuses Ed Buck Of Human Trafficking, Engaging In Revenge Porn '' CBS Los Angeles
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 21:41
WEST HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA) '-- Prominent political activist Ed Buck is facing new legal troubles as the mother of a man who died in his home has filed an amended civil suit accusing Buck of human trafficking and engaging in revenge porn.
''The new amendment is about making sure no box is left unchecked when it comes to all of the crimes that Ed Buck has committed,'' Jasmyne Cannick, an advocate for the family of 26-year-old Gemmel Moore who was found dead of a drug overdose in Buck's home in 2017.
After the district attorney's office declined to file criminal charges citing insufficient evidence, a wrongful death civil lawsuit was filed.
Now attorney's for Moore's mother have filed an amendment to that lawsuit. It accuses Buck of human trafficking and engaging in revenge porn by making and sharing a video of his alleged ''meth-fueled sexual encounters'' with Moore.
''Information we received from other victims of Ed Buck that Ed Buck loves to take pictures of these young men, loves to take videos of them in their inebriated state,'' Cannick said.
RELATED: Following The Money: An In-Depth Look At Ed Buck's Political Donations
The amended complaint alleges that Buck ''regularly solicits sex from black men in exchange for temporary housing and/or monetary compensation.''
''Gemmel Moore at the time was 26 years old and Ed Buck flew him here from Texas,'' Cannick said. ''And within 24 hours, he died of a crystal meth overdose.''
In January of this year, a second man died in Buck's apartment. Authorities ruled 55-year-old Timothy Dean died of an accidental meth overdose.
RELATED: David Goldstein Confronts Dem Donor Ed Buck On Dead Men Found At His Home
Attorneys for Buck said in a statement that they ''plan on fighting these allegations vigorously in court.''
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VIDEO - Leave.EU on Twitter: "WATCH ðŸ'º | Jeremy Corbyn - the man who branded the EU a "military Frankenstein" moving towards a "European empire" - has signed off on Labour backing a second referendum and backing Remain. What a shambolic hypocrite of a '
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 21:39
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VIDEO - How Russell Crowe Became Roger Ailes, Physically And Mentally - YouTube
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 15:59
VIDEO - Tom Steyer on Twitter: "It's true. I'm running for president.'... "
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 15:53
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VIDEO - William Barr Recuses Himself from Esptein Case | Law & Crime
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 15:05
When U.S. Attorney General William Barr went through the confirmation hearing process back in January, Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Nebraska) asked Barr if he would commit to launching a ''full and thorough investigation'' into the way the Department of Justice handled the Jeffrey Epstein case, namely how Epstein's law-breaking sweetheart deal came to be struck and kept under lock and key.
Barr offered an interesting response to the question: ''Senator, I have to recuse myself from Kirkland & Ellis matters, I am told. And I think Kirkland & Ellis was maybe involved in that case, so I need to sort out exactly what my role can be. I will say that if I'm confirmed I'll make sure your questions are answered on this case.''
Barr was right that Kirkland & Ellis was involved in the case. The firm's senior partner, Jay Lefkowitz, was among high-profile lawyers like Alan Dershowitz and Ken Starr who represented Epstein. The so-called all star cast of lawyers, with the apparent blessing of former federal prosecutor Alexander Acosta (President Donald Trump's current Labor Secretary), secured a plea agreement for Epstein that got federal sex trafficking charges taken off the table, and then some.
Back in 2008, Epstein pleaded guilty to state solicitation of prostitution in Florida, even though he was accused of sexually abusing dozens of underage girls. What's more, Epstein only had to serve 13 months in county jail and register as a sex offender. That wasn't all:
He was granted work release to go to a ''comfortable office'' for 12 hours a day, six days a week, despite the fact that the Palm Beach Sheriff's Department prohibited work release for sex offenders.
Epstein's deal, called a ''non-prosecution agreement,'' granted immunity to ''any potential co-conspirators,'' meaning that if any of Epstein's powerful friends were involved in his crimes, they would face no consequences. And Acosta agreed that the deal would be kept secret from the victims, preventing them from showing up in court to try to challenge it.
In short, federal prosecutors, under the leadership of Acosta, then the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, quietly entered into a secretive non-prosecution agreement that ensured that Epstein and his co-conspirators would not be prosecuted federally in exchange for Epstein's guilty plea to much less serious state prostitution charges. Epstein admitted to paying for nude massages that occasionally turned sexual.
On Monday, Epstein was indicted on federal conspiracy to commit sex trafficking and sex trafficking charges in the Southern District of New York. Epstein was accused of sexually exploiting and abusing dozens of minor girls''both at his Palm Beach, Florida and Manhattan, New York homes''from around 2002 to 2005. SDNY prosecutors alleged that Epstein ''worked and conspired with others, including employees and associates who facilitated his conduct.''
Also on Monday, AG Barr said he was recused from getting involved in the Epstein case, repeating what he said during confirmation hearings.
''I'm recused from that matter because one of the law firms that represented Epstein long ago was a firm that I subsequently joined for a period of time,'' Barr told reporters.
AG William Barr: "I'm recused from that matter because one of the law firms that represented Epstein long ago was a firm that I subsequently joined for a period of time." pic.twitter.com/hdwqgOlrWD
'-- The Hill (@thehill) July 8, 2019
The aforementioned Alexander Acosta and Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen have also worked at Kirkland & Ellis in the past.
Quite a bit of attention has otherwise been devoted on social media to a Barr Family-Epstein connection.
Jeffrey Epstein, who didn't go to college, is a billionaire, who started off work at the $$$ Dalton School, teaching teenagers, when he was inexplicably hired without a college degree by US AG BILL BARR's FATHER, then the head of school.
'-- Virginia Heffernan (@page88) July 8, 2019
Yes, AG Barr oversees the US Attorney's Office in NY, so it's possible he could attempt to interfere, though it would be obvious. Also, many years ago, Barr's father hired Epstein to teach at the private Dalton school, with no college degree. So there's that'...
'-- Frank Figliuzzi (@FrankFigliuzzi1) July 7, 2019
Former FBI Assistant Director for counterintelligence Frank Figliuzzi was one of many to point out that Barr's father, Donald Barr, hired Esptein decades ago to teach teens at the prestigious Dalton School. Donald Barr was the headmaster at the school from 1964-1974. Epstein, a college dropout, taught calculus and physics at the elite Manhattan school from 1973-1975.
New York University Law School Professor and legal ethics expert Stephen Gillers told Law&Crime that Barr would have had to recuse himself because of this if there was ''a reasonable possibility that the prosecution of Epstein could lead to disclosures that would harm Donald Barr's reputation.''
''The fact that Epstein was a college dropout is not by itself important here,'' Gillers said. ''Some college dropouts have a lot to teach '-- Bill Gates? Mark Zuckerberg? What's important is whether the case might produce information that does damage to Donald's reputation, damage that Bill Barr would wish to suppress. If there is a reasonable possibility that it might, Bill Barr is recused.''
Donald Barr died in 2004.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit on last week ordered the unsealing of the summary judgement record of a civil lawsuit that was filed against a woman who was accused of running a sex trafficking ring with Esptein. The impact of the news was described as ''potentially explosive,'' given that the documents could shine sunlight on allegations against Epstein and his former partner and alleged madam, Ghislaine Maxwell, plus unnamed individuals who argued against the unsealing of documents.
Virginia Giuffre (formerly Roberts) claimed that Maxwell recruited her to be a ''masseuse'' for Epstein when she worked at Mar-a-Lago, the Florida club owned by President Donald Trump. As Courthouse News noted before, former President Bill Clinton ''hitched multiple rides on Epstein's jet to his private island,'' while President Trump ''once called Epstein a 'friend.'''
''I've known Jeff for 15 years. Terrific guy. He's a lot of fun to be with,'' Trump said of Epstein in a 2002 interview. ''It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it '' Jeffrey enjoys his social life.''
Giuffre alleged that from 1999 to 2002, she was used to perform sexual acts. She said she was just 16 when this began and claimed that other underage girls were used as well. According to the Miami Herald, Maxwell settled the case in 2017 for millions of dollars.
A John Doe once argued that an unsealing of documents related to to this case could ''substantially infringe the privacy and reputational interests of many third persons '... who have never been charged with a crime, have never been subject to civil proceedings, and have never been publicly identified by Giuffre.''
The appellate court noted at length the background of this case, including that allegations were made against ''several other'' unnamed ''prominent individuals'' '-- even ''world leaders.''
[Images via Palm Beach Sheriff's Office, Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images]
VIDEO - Pledge of Allegiance debate draws big crowd at St. Louis Park City Council study session | KSTP.com
Tue, 09 Jul 2019 13:49
Dozens of people showed up to share their frustrations with the decision, and many came from outside St. Louis Park.
"I'm proud to be an American now and I just don't find anything in the Pledge of Allegiance offensive," said Kathleen Bryan, who lives in Orono.
"We're standing up as patriots coming together saying we love our country," said Randal Thom, who lives in Lakefield.
Last month, the council unanimously voted to no longer recite the Pledge of Allegiance at the start of meetings. Many agreed it was an issue of diversity and wanting to make sure everyone felt welcome. Since the decision, some council members say they have received rude comments from people.
More from KSTP:
St. Louis Park council to discuss decision to drop Pledge of Allegiance
St. Louis Park City Council drops Pledge of Allegiance
"As a proud American, I'm appalled that our little suburban community's meeting protocols have sparked this polarizing conversation," said City Council Member Anne Mavity.
"I feel like we made a mistake," Council Member Steve Hallfin said.
While some apologized for not including the community in the decision, others stood their ground.
"Evidently here in Minnesota, we're playing around with their hallowed traditions," said Council Member Tim Brausen.
The crowd challenged the decision at a study session to reconsider this move, something that does not include public comment.
"I think to take things like this away from the American people, it's very hurtful," Bryan said.
"It feels like we may have missed a step there," said Mayor Jake Spano.
Spano believes the council's vote was premature, and wants to focus on having a conversation of returning to the pledge.
"My hope is that they have an opportunity to say 'Wow (I) didn't think this was a big deal, but boy it really is a big deal, so yeah we should have a conversation about it,'" Spano said.
Ultimately, they agreed to meet again to figure out a way to engage with the community on this issue. The council does not have a date yet to continue talking about this topic, but they do plan to to do some community engagement.
For now, the pledge will not be recited at meetings.
Connect with KSTPJoin the conversation on our social media platforms. Share your comments on our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages.CreditsBrett Hoffland
Updated: July 08, 2019 10:33 PMPublished: July 08, 2019 12:00 AM
Copyright 2019 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company
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VIDEO - The Hill on Twitter: "Sen. Kamala Harris: "Well [Joe Biden] says he's sorry. I'm going to take him at his word but again, that doesn't address the issue of busing in America & the fact that he still -- you know, we have to, we cannot rewrite histo
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VIDEO - Sky News on Twitter: ""It's not fair!" - Megan Rapinoe, one the of the standout football stars from the Women's World Cup, has accused FIFA of disrespecting the women's game. #WWC For more on the story: https://t.co/gH32RxlI0S'... https://t.co/WZxa
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All Clips

Kamala is CLEARLY siding up to Joe Biden for the ticket LOL.mp3
Antonio Moore on Kamala Harris' Housing Plan is NOT for ADOS.mp3
Marc Pritchard P&G Chief Brand Officer AD Color Conference on 'The Talk' to excuse racial and segregated advertising.mp3
Christine LaGarde says Cryptocurrencies are clearly shaking the system.mp3
Newshour Jeh Johnson - Immigration About his op-ed on open borders.mp3
Alex Acosta Epstein -1- Other individuals involved.mp3
Alex Acosta Epstein -2- Is Epstein an Intelligence Asset NON Answer.mp3
Ann Coulter on how Eptein exactly made his money and that he is the 'Concierge' to the rich and powerful non-hollywood types - STATE SPONSOR.mp3
Baar recuses himself from Epstein case.mp3
Conchita Sarnoff -1- Why the deal went to the feds in 2008 Hillary political mess.mp3
The View on Acosta and Derschowitz - MUST RESIGN.mp3
Victim Attorney Bradley Edwards -1- Epstein's little black book.mp3
Victim Attorney Bradley Edwards -2- Trump happy to speak with him in 2009.mp3
Southern Utah Tesla super charger station NOT paid rent since November.mp3
cannibis reform series TWO public health PBS.mp3
epstein report PBS.mp3
fuel efficiency rules rollbacks PBS.mp3
fun google document VERITAS.mp3
goldfish invasion.mp3
kids in hot cars results ABC.mp3
new army uniforms report cbs.mp3
non conforming gender research.mp3
sex trafficking ONE PBS.mp3
sex trafficking Three PBS.mp3
sex trafficking TWO PBS.mp3
soccer team meghan complains.mp3
trump and twitter DN.mp3
uk ambassadior 2017.mp3
UK ambassador DN.mp3
unplanned the movie.mp3
wasps injuries TWO.mp3
wasps super nests One.mp3
wasps Three.mp3
Wrap of socal quake NBC.mp3
wtf report on drug prices PBS.mp3
African movies.mp3
bill maher on gerrymandering begs question.mp3
Canada oil industry taking action against foeign money.mp3
cannibis reform series PBS.mp3
Russell Crowe on Colbert about Roger Ailes The Loudest Voice.mp3
The Loudest Voice Roger Ailes Control Room Legs scene.mp3
Megan Rapinoe on SU Soccer Federation Payment and policies.mp3
Megan Rapinooe on Pooper -1- Not going to go for THIS administration and our PLATFORM.mp3
Megan Rapinooe on Pooper -2- Yes to Pelosi AOC Schumer etc OUR Country.mp3
Megan Rapinooe on Pooper -3- Message to Presiden Trump.mp3
Nike US Soccer Women's Team Post-Game Ad.mp3
  • 0:00
    you're a moron Adam curry this is no
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    agenda from northern Silicon Valley
  • 0:23
    where we're celebrating international
  • 0:25
    population day and the death of
  • 0:27
    Alexander Hamilton one down seven point
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    seven billion ago I'm John C Dvorak what
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    billion what people yeah all right
  • 0:43
    that's the population of the globe at
  • 0:44
    the moment oh yes so how do we celebrate
  • 0:47
    Alexander Hamilton's death he was shot
  • 0:50
    by Aaron Burr and Abdul and that's to be
  • 0:54
    celebrated well monetarist you are yes
  • 1:00
  • 1:01
    before we get my side maybe before we
  • 1:05
    get into everything today I wanted to
  • 1:08
    bring people's attention to a brand new
  • 1:12
    series on Showtime which represents a
  • 1:14
    lot of what we discuss here in the show
  • 1:17
    and I don't know if you've seen this it
  • 1:20
    is the loudest voice
  • 1:23
    it is the story of Fox News and Roger
  • 1:26
    Ailes Roger Ailes played by Russell
  • 1:29
    Crowe yes who also looks like him and
  • 1:33
    put the makeup yeah it so you've seen it
  • 1:35
    no I've seen two trailers
  • 1:37
    oh my god Oh John this is it's basically
  • 1:41
    oh you want to understand what No Agenda
  • 1:43
    talks about watch this show it is
  • 1:46
    fantastic well I'll give you an example
  • 1:50
    when we talk about what's going on in
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    television you know we we joke about the
  • 1:55
    control room we know how that works how
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    the interruptions work how the
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    advertising works the commercials what
  • 2:01
    then what the news readers do you know
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    the it's and what they're there for and
  • 2:06
    what their role is to show it insofar as
  • 2:10
    the way we do behind the scenes yes the
  • 2:12
    behind the whenever we deconstruct media
  • 2:14
    we know exactly how it works yeah and
  • 2:17
    received several emails from people who
  • 2:19
    also have seen it and said oh now I get
  • 2:22
  • 2:22
    for an example this is before Fox News
  • 2:25
    goes on-air they're rehearsing and Roger
  • 2:28
    Ailes has come up with this fantastic
  • 2:31
    idea for this new news quote news
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    station which have a clip of Russell
  • 2:37
    quote talking about in a moment and so
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    it's in the control room he's watching
  • 2:41
    the set and again these are just
  • 2:43
    rehearsal so they're not live on air yet
  • 2:45
    here's a clip alright let's look at
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    where we are
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    what's she wearing but is the Bulldog
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    rodeo in town or something was she
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    running pants why is she wearing - I
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    like legs anybody else like legs
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    I like legs
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    what the fuck is that Halloween is
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    orange so you know this is this is the
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    beginning of the legs on TV that Roger
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    Ailes brought us and yeah and he was
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    right because he knew what the audience
  • 3:21
    wanted and that's how it all works and
  • 3:23
    doesn't just have to be following me and
  • 3:25
    it's always been that way the funny
  • 3:27
    thing is everyone denies it or they go a
  • 3:29
    million but the in fact the would I
  • 3:35
    think it's the way they handle it I mean
  • 3:36
    I think women don't mind showing off
  • 3:39
    their legs but they don't like to be
  • 3:41
    told to show off their legs no of course
  • 3:43
    not and and you know and the guy that's
  • 3:45
    why Paula Zahn quit yes oh I forgot
  • 3:48
    about that now you know the Ailes of
  • 3:51
    course was also a creep and you know he
  • 3:53
    would have girls come in and audition
  • 3:54
    and out whirl around for me spin around
  • 3:57
    and I didn't pull that clip but here's
  • 3:59
    Russell Crowe talking about the
  • 4:02
    brilliance of Roger Ailes on Colbert the
  • 4:05
    seven o'clock bulletin with Shep Smith
  • 4:07
    he's just the news you know the rest of
  • 4:09
    the time it's opinion even though it's
  • 4:11
    cold Fox News oh I'm I would granted
  • 4:14
    that I mean I think Shep does a fine job
  • 4:16
    at the Brit bear does a fine job so uh
  • 4:19
    Wallace is a fine job on the Sundays
  • 4:21
    over on Fox but I mean when he was
  • 4:23
    putting it together one of the things
  • 4:24
    that's sort of shocking the other people
  • 4:26
    the other character is talking to in in
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    the in the first episode is his
  • 4:30
    willingness to make it look good make it
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    sound good to to make it something that
  • 4:34
    people will turn on regardless of what
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    the message necessarily is because some
  • 4:39
    people have their back up against his
  • 4:41
    willingness to turn it into
  • 4:42
    entertainment yeah well what he said he
  • 4:44
    was saying though is that you know
  • 4:46
    people don't really want to be informed
  • 4:49
    they don't want all of the details they
  • 4:51
    just want to feel informed that when I
  • 4:53
    think at some point and time in their
  • 4:55
    mind that they've got that covered
  • 4:57
    you know so he was playing into that but
  • 4:59
    also you've got to know that you know
  • 5:01
    Roger many many times over the years
  • 5:02
    said if he hadn't have had seen a
  • 5:06
    certain bias in media and Fox News could
  • 5:09
    have been the exact opposite because he
  • 5:10
    was looking for the open area of the
  • 5:13
    and it was in his estimation that CNN
  • 5:16
    that MSNBC CNBC you know cease ban ABC
  • 5:20
    NBC CBS The Times The Post
  • 5:23
    everybody had a left-leaning bent so to
  • 5:26
    him what was the vailable was a
  • 5:29
    conservative audience that was being
  • 5:30
    underserved and that proved to be very
  • 5:33
    true because now you have one single
  • 5:35
    news network which dominates half of the
  • 5:38
    available audience right well he's put
  • 5:45
    Fox News into an incredible situation
  • 5:48
    hasn't there mean that that is a
  • 5:49
    money-making machine they make two
  • 5:51
    billion dollars a year profit now that's
  • 5:54
    a hell of a thing when you think that
  • 5:56
    new services began with the
  • 5:58
    understanding that you would often use
  • 6:00
    as part of your broadcast but you did it
  • 6:02
    from a perspective of not needing or
  • 6:04
    requiring a profit so now you understand
  • 6:08
    why it works and why CNN and MSNBC have
  • 6:13
    lower ratings than Fox because they are
  • 6:15
    fighting for the same audience they're
  • 6:17
    fighting amongst themselves foxes by
  • 6:19
    themselves just all alone except for
  • 6:21
    something minor
  • 6:22
    since pretty much everyone noticed Fox's
  • 6:26
    dominance and what surprises me is that
  • 6:29
    nobody else has stepped up maybe there's
  • 6:33
    a couple that pull it back a little bit
  • 6:34
    yeah there's a couple trying one
  • 6:37
    American news I think is trying but it's
  • 6:41
    they're trying you said no one's trying
  • 6:43
    they're trying no I mean no one who with
  • 6:46
    any kind of clout hi Anna no the problem
  • 6:50
    I disagree the problem with one American
  • 6:53
    news is they're not showing legs all
  • 6:55
    they got is talking heads
  • 6:57
    that's what news is not on cable yes
  • 7:01
    this is on my cable you get one American
  • 7:04
    news on your cable I do huh yeah well I
  • 7:08
    mean it's also news max and what else is
  • 7:11
    a newsy news II geez
  • 7:16
    but yet if you want ratings you got to
  • 7:19
    show legs
  • 7:20
    it's just how it works