804: Evidence Free Zone

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

2h 47m
March 3rd, 2016
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Executive Producers: Sir Edward of Bridgewater, Duke Thomas Nussbaum, Joseph Gilbert

Associate Executive Producers: John Glover

Cover Artist: Mark G.

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AC'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--K5ACCGovernments are reading your email.Slow them down with encryption.My public key:pubkey.curry.com'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--
The Dilemma With The Phrase, 'I Love You To The Moon And Back' | Thought Catalog
Sat, 27 Feb 2016 15:08
image '' Flickr / Carl MilnerCan we all take a minute to figure out what this phrase really means?
I love you to the moon and back.
Because way too many people have been using it lately, and I find it extremely clich(C).
Why the moon? Why not the sun? Why not some planet such as Pluto or Mars? Actually, apparently Pluto got demoted and is now considered a dwarf planet, but that is beside the point'...
I guess I just do not understand why it is that specific distance. The moon is, on average, 238,855 miles away. So technically people are saying they love you 477,710 miles (the distance to the moon and back).
You think that's a lot, but in terms of a car, it's not really. A car gets an average of 12,000 miles a year. Saying someone loves you 477,710 miles is like saying someone loves you for 40 years. That is not a very strong guarantee.
If you are twenty years old and post an Instagram photo saying ''I love you to the moon and back,'' I assume you're expecting not to love that person when you are sixty.
Who even invented the phrase anyway? I tried to find an origin online and no one seemed to know. It is as if the world just agreed to start saying it one day and it stuck.
A simple I love you must not do it these days. People need that extra embellishment to express their true feelings. They need the extra pizzazz that everyone else is using.
But if everyone else is using it, does it really mean anything? What is the declaration worth?
I might be getting too philosophical here, but it is something to think about. The next time you start to type or say a phrase you've heard before, think about what it really means. What are you saying? And can you say it better in your own words.
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Elections 2016
Trump. I've been around this kind kind of person. They all have a vice. Gambling. Women. Etc.
Guard chokeslams photographer at Trump rally in Virginia | TheHill
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 05:09
A photographer was slammed down on a table by someone who appears to be a security guard during a Donald TrumpDonald TrumpEx-RNC chief suggests he'd back Biden over TrumpTrump orders Secret Service to remove black students from rallyMelania Trump defends husband, says he 'speaks from the heart'MORE rally Monday in Virginia.
A short video of the encounter was posted on Twitter by Independent Journal reporter Joe Perticone and other reporters.
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The photographer, Time magazine's Christopher Morris, ended up on the ground, kicking out his legs at a man in a gray suit who was trying to hold him. It was not immediately clear who the man in the gray suit was working for.A video of the incident posted on Instagram showed the guard clearly grabbing Morris by the neck before slamming him down on a table. The video has now been taken down.
The photographer, while getting to his feet, points at his throat and appears to say, "you grabbed me by the throat."
Once on his feet, he then reaches out to the man's throat before being grabbed by a third man around the arm.
As the man with the camera is pulled away, he can be heard saying, "he grabbed me by the neck."
Trump's campaign issued a statement indicating that the security agent involved in the incident was with the U.S. Secret Service (USSS).
"There was an incident involving a photographer and a USSS agent at today's Radford University Trump rally," wrote spokeswoman Hope Hicks in an email to The Hill. "We are not aware of all details surrounding the incident and all future inquiries should be directed to local law enforcement. "
The Secret Service also released a statement late Monday afternoon.
''The Secret Service is aware of an incident involving an employee of the Secret Service that occurred earlier today in Radford, VA. At this time, our local field office is working with their law enforcement partners to determine the exact circumstances that led up to this incident. The Secret Service will provide further details as warranted once additional facts surrounding the situation are known.''
In an afternoon blog post, Time confirmed that Morris was the photographer involved and explained, step by step, what the magazine believes happened.
"TIME has contacted the U.S. Secret Service to express concerns about the level and nature of the agent's response. Morris has also expressed remorse for his part in escalating the confrontation," according to the post.
A spokesman said in the statement, ''We are relieved that Chris is feeling OK, and we expect him to be back at work soon.''
The reporter, Perticone, published additional video on Twitter he says occurred moments before the interaction between the security guard and Morris "got physical."
The guard says to Morris, "Get in the pen." Morris is then heard to say, "F--- you."
Also shown in Perticone's second video are African-American protesters walking past the press pen chanting and shaking their fists.
WSET reporter Annie Anderson posted a third video in which she says she interviewed Morris as he was being escorted out of the Trump rally.
In the video, Morris says, "I never punched him. I never touched him. At the very end I tried to show ... the press lead what he did to me. And I said he choked me so I put my hand on him. And that's when I was arrested."
The rally on Monday included several rounds of protests, including some reportedly made by Black Lives Matter activists.
At one point, as protesters were being ejected, Trump complained that a woman had interrupted him in the middle of one of his punch lines.
"Are you from Mexico?" the White House hopeful called out to the protester.
Protesters have become common at Trump events, with activists often denouncing the Republican's rhetoric toward minorities. Black Lives Matter activists '-- a group whose primary focus is the police treatment of African-Americans '-- have shown up at previous Trump events.
"You're going to hear it once," Trump told the protesters on Monday. "All lives matter."
Updated at 4:39 p.m.
Ted Cruz Thinks This Could Be Why Donald Trump Has Yet to Release His Taxes | Video | TheBlaze.com
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 10:55
In recent weeks, there have been many reports detailing businessman Donald Trump's dealings with mafia mob families. One of Trump's main GOP challengers believes that's the reason he has yet to release his tax returns.
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said on NBC's ''Meet the Press'' Sunday that he believes it's possible Trump is stalling to release his tax returns because his business dealings with the mob go deeper than anyone currently believes.
Image source: Youtube/screenshot
''There have been multiple media reports about Donald's business dealings with the mob,'' Cruz told show host Chuck Todd. ''Maybe his taxes show those business dealings are a lot more extensive than has been reported.''
However, that answer was not suitable for Todd, who challenged that it was largely speculative. When he asked Cruz for facts, the Texas Republican got specific.
''ABC, CNN, multiple news reports have reported about his dealings with, for example, S&A construction, which was owned by 'Fat Tony' Salerno, who is a mobster who is in jail,'' Cruz said. ''It is owned by two of the major New York crime families. And that has been reported in multiple media outlets.''
According to the CNN report to which Cruz referred, Trump has ''extensive'' ties to crime families in both New York and Philadelphia. In addition to paying double the market price for a property in Atlantic city '-- which would eventually become a Trump casino '-- from Philly mob boss Philip ''Chicken Man'' Testa, Trump built his Trump Plaza condos in Manhattan using primarily concrete, rather than steel, an industry controlled by the mafia during the building's construction.
The report also noted that Trump was the subject of a bribery investigation in 1979 and a racketeering investigation in 1981 '-- crimes commonly associated with organized crime syndicates.
Cruz also told Todd that Trump may not want the public, particularly the Republican Party and conservatives, to see additional donations on his returns.
''Maybe it's the case that he has given large sums of money to left-wing groups like Planned Parenthood,'' Cruz said. ''Maybe he's been a big financial supporter of that.''
In recent days, both Cruz and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio have released their tax returns.
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Donald Trump and Elton John's Doomed Bromance - The Daily Beast
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 23:41
The GOP frontrunner loves playing ''Tiny Dancer'' at his campaign rallies. Elton John recommends ''one of those f*cking country stars'' instead. Is this the end of their years-long friendship?
If you've ever been to a Donald Trump rally trying to help Make America Great Once More, then it is likely you heard a fair amount of Elton John while milling about the adoring crowd.
Trump has personally curated one of the more eclectic and perplexing campaign-trail playlists of the 2016 election. ''Remember, the more inappropriate for a political event, the better,'' a Trump volunteer in charge of one rally's music told The New Yorker, regarding the Trump-approved songs.
The playlist has included showtunes from Cats and The Phantom of the Opera, The Beatles, Twisted Sister, Aerosmith, Adele, opera star Luciano Pavarotti, and The Rolling Stones (though several featured artists have complained or demanded their song's removal).
One of the pop songs most prominently featured at Trump events was ''Tiny Dancer,'' with music by Elton John and lyrics by Bernie Taupin.
Yes, that ''Tiny Dancer'''--the song you felt proud of yourself for knowing and appreciating well before Almost Famous gave it another injection of popularity sometime in the early, early aughts.
(The Trump campaign has also been incorporating John's ''Rocket Man.'')
''Tiny Dancer'' might be one of the last songs you would expect to hear blasted over the loudspeakers at the political rally of a vulgar, authoritarian, tough-talking figure whom the hard-right in America has crowned as their savior. Same goes for the Andrew Lloyd Webber Broadway numbers, but perhaps those can be chalked up to his New York Values. (In fact, both John and Lloyd Webber have been tenants at Trump Tower.)
Sadly for The Donald, Elton John wasn't so enthused about his inclusion.
''Elton's music has not been requested for use in any official capacity by Donald Trump,'' a publicist recently announced. ''Any use of his music should not be seen as an endorsement of Donald Trump by Elton.'' John later clarified his position.
''I don't really want my music to be involved in anything to do with an American election campaign,'' he told The Guardian. ''I'm British. I've met Donald Trump, he was very nice to me, it's nothing personal, his political views are his own, mine are very different, I'm not a Republican in a million years. Why not ask Ted fucking Nugent? Or one of those fucking country stars? They'll do it for you.''
So why was Trump so keen on conspicuously and loudly promoting John's work as he campaigned for president? Simple: Trump has long been a yuuuge fan. (Last August, Trump even mentioned his Elton John fandom to conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt.) And the real-estate mogul and English singer-songwriter have been friendly for decades.
''Taking piano lessons from my friend Elton John,'' Trump said in December 2013, tweeting an old photo of them at a white grand piano.
''Nobody gets audiences like I get,'' Trump said at a rally in Michigan back in December. ''We broke the record. And I don't have a guitar, no guitar. Elton John said, 'You get the biggest crowds in the world for a guy without a guitar.'''
The two of them have rubbed elbows numerous times over the years. When Trump and Ivana Trump went through their messy divorce in 1990, their celebrity friends were forced to chose sides. The tabloid press largely reported that John was on Team Donald.
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The Daily News reported in February 1990 that Ivana's postnuptial allies included Prince Charles, Princess Diana, Calvin Klein, and Oprah. Donald got Elton John, Don Johnson, Melanie Griffith, Oscar de la Renta, Cher, Liza Minnelli, Mike Tyson, and Frank Sinatra.
The same month, it was announced that John would perform at the inaugural arena concert at his pal's then-new Taj Mahal Casino Resort in Atlantic City. ''I want the biggest and the best to play at the Trump Taj Mahal, and when Elton John takes the stage, the future of entertainment in Atlantic City will never be the same,'' Trump said in a statement at the time. (Yeah, about that future...)
Here's bootleg audio of John performing ''Tiny Dancer,'' the Trump favorite, at the Taj Mahal in 1990:
Nowadays, Trump and John certainly have little to agree over politically. For instance, the openly gay musician probably isn't thrilled that the Republican presidential frontrunner says he would appoint Supreme Court justices willing to ''stand against'' marriage equality. John, however, won't necessarily let politics get in the way of a decent friendship. In 2011, he sang at right-wing radio star Rush Limbaugh's fourth wedding, and smiled for the photos.
''When it comes to people like [Limbaugh], or people who might enrage you sometimes, dialogue is the only way,'' John told The New York Times in 2014. ''You have to reach out.''
''I mean, let's face it. There are so many clich(C)s about conservatives and liberals and so forth,'' Limbaugh said on his show, discussing the wedding gig. ''[Elton] loved it. He just had a bang-up great time, and we did with him'...Trust the fact that he was exactly what you would hope to be, if you had a chance to meet him. Just a great guy.''
John's longstanding relationship with Trump is another example of how the rock star doesn't seem to demand ideological purity in his friends. It is also an example of how Trump'--himself a pop-cultural icon'--has been able to wield his celebrity status to bring pop stars, Hollywood starlets, and world-famous media personalities into his expansive social circles.
Elton John's publicist did not respond to a request for comment, and the Trump campaign did not get back to us about John's recent comments, or whether they have removed John's music from the campaign playlist entirely.
Tiny Dancer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 23:37
Background and writingEditThe words of the song were written by Bernie Taupin to capture the spirit of California in 1970 encapsulated by the many beautiful women he met there. A common misconception is that the song was written for Maxine Feibelman, Taupin's first wife. Rather, it was simply dedicated to her on the album Madman Across the Water.[2][3]
The song features a piano-based melody during verses and an arrangement that at the start features pedal steel guitar and light percussion but, transitioning subtly halfway through one of the choruses, by the end is driven by Paul Buckmaster's dynamic strings, along with a barely heard backing choir.
Due to the song lacking a strong hook, "Tiny Dancer" was initially a non-starter as a single in the US, reaching only #41 on the U.S. pop chart, and was not even released as a single in the UK. The song fared better in Canada, where John had much of his early commercial breakthrough success, peaking at #19. It was also a hit in Australia, peaking at #13. Eventually, the song slowly became one of John's most popular songs even in the territories that initially failed to embrace it, and the full-length version is now a fixture on North American, UK and Australian adult contemporary and rock radio stations.
It was ranked No. 397 on the 2010 List of Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.[4]
Other versionsEdit"Tiny Dancer" has been covered by Lani Hall in the 1970s, by the Red Hot Chili Peppers with John Frusciante on vocals since the early 1990s, by Dave Grohl on The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn.[7][8][9]In 2002, Ben Folds covered "Tiny Dancer" for his live album, Ben Folds Live. The song was later released as a promo single.Country music artist Tim McGraw covered the song on his 2002 album Tim McGraw and the Dancehall Doctors. McGraw also performed the song, with Elton John, at the American Music Awards.It is referenced in Rihanna's 2006 single SOS, as she mentions the lyric "Just hold me close boy, 'cause I'm your tiny dancer".In 2008, a version was released by Italian DJ Marco DeMark and singer Casey Barnes. It was later remixed by Deadmau5 & Moto Blanco.In 2009, DJ Ironik and Chipmunk created a remix of the song, featuring John singing the chorus, which peaked at No.3 in the UK Singles Chart.Corey Taylor played this song at his Sonisphere FestivalKnebworth solo performance as the opening number.A sample of the "Tiny Dancer" chorus is featured in a mash-up by Girl Talk called "Smash Your Head" (from the 2006 album Night Ripper).A version featuring Mary Black, Paddy Casey and Declan O'Rourke was recorded in Galway, Ireland in 2012 as a charity single.[10][11]A country version of this song was created by Disk Eyes Productions for a 'Gone Country' series featuring the songs of Elton John in 2005.On 8 April 2013, Caroline Glaser performed "Tiny Dancer" before a live audience and celebrity judges in her national TV debut on the hit show The Voice. On the Season Five final performances, Will Champlin and his coach, Adam Levine, sang it for the collaboration portion.In popular cultureEditIn 1971, John performed the song on the first series of The Old Grey Whistle Test. The performance has been released as part of The Old Grey Whistle Test - Volumes 1-3 Box Set.[12]It is referenced in Rihanna's 2006 single "SOS", as she mentions the lyric "Just hold me close boy 'cause I'm your tiny dancer."A reference to this song was made in sitcoms Friends and Will and Grace. In both shows, the same joke was used where Phoebe Buffay in the former and Grace Adler in the latter confuses the lyrics as "Hold me close, young Tony Danza" and "Hold me closer, Tony Danza", respectively. The same mistake was committed in Drop Dead Diva.The song was featured in 1980 in "The Americanization of Ivan" episode of WKRP in Cincinnati. References to the song were made throughout the show, and was featured during the closing credits.The cast of Almost Famous (2000) sings along to the song while riding in the tour bus. It is also featured as instrumental incidental music in a phonic reference to the character Penny Lane.The first line of the 2000 Fuel song "Prove" mentions the lyric "Lay me down in sheets of linen".The song was featured in a Budweiser TV commercial starring Peter Stormare and Andrew Sensenig that premiered during Fox Broadcasting's telecast of Super Bowl XLV on 6 February 2011.[13]Joseph Gordon-Levitt performed the song in a lip-syncing competition against Jimmy Fallon and Stephen Merchant on Fallon's Late Night show.[14]In the season 2 episode of The Office called "The Dundies," Michael Scott sings the song but changing he words to "You have won a tiny Dundie," an office award, before bar patrons mock him, calling out "Sing it, Elton!" Later the "Tiny Dancer" chorus plays over the final scene as Jim Halpert watches Pam Beesly and Angela Martin drive away.Beginning in April 2015 the Bennington radio show on Sirius XM began using Tiny Dancer as their ending theme song.The UK based department store chain John Lewis, use the song on their August 2015 insurance advert.Tiny Dancer is the name of a recurring villain in the PBS children's program Odd Squad.Chicago's mayor, Rahm Emanuel. former chief of staff in President Obama's first administration, is called "Tiny Dancer" in critical media stories because of Emanuel's short height and the ballet lessons he was encouraged to take by his mother.ReferencesEdit^Dan, "Under Cover: Tiny Dancer - As Heard On", 20 April 2012, "[1]", 24 July 2012^"Bernie Taupin :: Discography". berniejtaupin.com. ^"Tiny Dancer by Elton John", 24 July 2012.^"500 Greatest Songs of All Time". 4 July 2011. Archived from the original on 7 April 2011. Retrieved 7 February 2013. ^"Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". collectionscanada.gc.ca. ^http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/rpm/028020-119.01-e.php?&file_num=nlc008388.7687&type=1&interval=20&PHPSESSID=4njnvrh1jgqpq28ugofunq7347^"Lani Hall's Tiny Dancer cover of Elton John's Tiny Dancer", "[2]", 24 July 2012^"Red Hot Cilli Peppers - Tiny Dancer", 11 April 2008" on YouTube, 24 July 2012^"Dave Grohl - Tiny Dancer", "[3]", 24 July 2012^"Elton heads galaxy of stars backing Lily-Mae's cancer fight", November 2012^"Tiny Dancer - A Song for Lily-Mae", November 2012^The Old Grey Whistle Test (DVD). Warner Home Video. 2003. ^"Budweiser Elton John Tiny Dancer Peter Stormare Super Bowl XLV Commercial Ad 2011" on YouTube, 6 February 2011, 24 July 2012^"Lip Sync Battle with Joseph Gordon Levitt, Stephen Merchant and Jimmy Fallon" on YouTube, 24 September 2013External linksEdit
Low-Expectations: Secret to Trump's Success
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 01:18
Donald Trump's flair for insults knows no bounds. Last year he said of Senator John McCain "he's not a war hero . . . I like people who weren't captured." McCain, a former Navy aviator, was shot down over Vietnam and tortured as a POW -- his wounds from those beatings will stay with him the rest of his life.
Attacking a US hero would by itself torpedo most any bid for public office, even dogcatcher; yet, the most petulant figure in American political history is in command of the GOP presidential field.
Even Trump is amused by what he gets away with: "I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and not lose any voters, okay? It's like incredible." He attributes his Teflon coating to having "the most loyal people."
I believe that there is another explanation for the businessman-reality-TV-star's ability to say or do anything without repercussion: low-expectations.
Trump's greatest political asset might be his bad reputation.
I uncovered the "expectation phenomenon" last year when testing an analytical tool I developed to predict the impact a crisis will have on a particular brand. After running case studies through the Crisis Score model I discovered instances when a great reputation was a hindrance because of the high-expectations that it created; conversely, occasions when a bad reputation was actually a benefit, as it effectively lowered expectations.
There is probably plenty of psychology around this concept, but in marketing and public relations, it flies-in-the-face of everything taught and believed to be true for decades. Conventional thinking holds that a "halo effect" envelops brands with a good reputation, allowing them to better absorb a crisis than those with an inferior one.
Once I came to terms with the phenomenon, certain things started to make sense, including the stories of Toyota and General Motors (GM).
In 2009, at the outset of its "unintended acceleration" issue, Toyota enjoyed a tremendous reputation for quality, safety, and reliability. GM, by contrast, a brand plagued by quality issues, was emerging from bankruptcy in 2014 when its ignition switch issue because just the latest in a long string of crises,. In spite of the fact that GM had a lesser reputation, and that their issue resulted in far more fatalities and recalls, their sales and stock price both went up during their crisis, while Toyota experienced 20% drops in both metrics.
Toyota's halo fell down around its neck and consumers choked them with it.
The "expectation phenomenon" might also explain why low-budget airlines fair better in consumer satisfaction surveys; it isn't necessarily true that they offer better service, it might just be that passengers expect less of them, which makes their performance seem better than it really is.
Before Trump, President Bill Clinton benefitted from the same phenomenon.
I doubt that historians will credit Paula Jones and Gennifer Flowers for their critical roles in getting Clinton through the Monica Lewinsky scandal, but that is precisely what they inadvertently did.
During his first election for president in 1991, Jones accused the Governor of sexual harassment while Flowers chronicled a decade-long affair with Clinton. Their stories damaged Clinton's brand enough to lower expectations the public had in his character, but not enough to keep him out of the White House.
The irony in Clinton's story is that two women who sought to ruin his political life ended up saving it years later.
Imagine if George W. Bush or Barack Obama were caught having a sexual relationship with a young White House intern, in the Oval Office, and then lied about it to investigators and to the American people. It is hard to see how either president would survive such a scandal, given public expectations of their morality, compared to their predecessor from Arkansas.
We are witnessing a similar phenomenon with Trump, only in his case it is a free pass to be crass, condescending and invective.
Am I suggesting that a good reputation is a bad thing? No, but it might be a double-edged sword; instead of creating a "halo effect" it might actually create a spotlight effect -- putting brands in the bright lights of high-expectations.
If Trump deserves credit for anything, it is his ability to play to growing frustrations over political correctness and illegal immigration. He might not of set out to insult as many people and groups as he has, but he has mistakenly interpreted the lack of backlash as approval, when it more attributed to low expectations.
Republican voters are not the only ones to blame for Trump's meteoric rise. The media has certainly played a huge role in his political success, giving the candidate a hugely disproportionate amount of ink and airtime, right from the start. But there has also been too little public outrage when Trump insults an American hero or goes off on one of his misogynistic rants; perhaps democrats view it as an opportunity to improve their chances in November, but that is a dangerous game -- one they, and we, might all regret.
Trump may actually win the presidency, and if he does, it is our fault for not holding him to the same standard we hold others to. I don't know if he really believes his own insults, but I know that I believe in spirited discourse free of temper-tantrums and belittling tyraids.
I fear for our country if we elect a playground bully to be Commander-in-Chief. Teaching respect to our children is hard enough without having leading political figures threatening to push people down "with a thimble," whatever that means, and criticizing others for their appearance: "look at that face, are you kidding me."
Ronald Reagan described our country as "a shining city on a hill," a reputation very much at risk. We do not need to "make America great again;" we need to keep it great by expecting more from our candidates for public office.
Complete guide to fleeing President Donald Trump's America - NY Daily News
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 15:42
For folks across the nation, the election of Donald Trump would make America grate '-- again.
The mere thought of President Trump taking the oath of office on Jan. 20, 2017, has already led to threats from U.S. citizens that they would leave our red, white and blue borders behind if The Donald reaches The White House.
FULL COVERAGE: THE 2016 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION
The tycoon-turned-politician won at least seven states onSuper Tuesday, putting him one step closer to the White House, and his critics '-- and they're plentiful '-- are one step closer to the border.
Since declaring his candidacy last June, Trump has insulted everybody from John McCain to Pope Francis, from Mexicans to Muslims to Megyn Kelly.
KING: NOT LONG BEFORE SOMEONE GETS KILLED AT TRUMP RALLY
Left-leaning Americans have been threatening to leave the country since Trump announced his candidacy last summer with a hate-filled, derogatory speech in which he called Mexicans rapists and drug dealers
The warnings of emigration have continued through his campaign '-- so much so that a tiny Canadian island created a website to welcome Trump haters.
Of course, such threats are nothing new. The late director Robert Altman started the trend during the 2000 election, becoming the first celebrity to say he'd leave the U.S. if George W. Bush was elected. But the threatened escape never happened: He died in Hollywood six years into Bush's presidency.
Minnesota-born "Monty Python" member Terry Gilliam renounced his American citizenship in 2006 in protest of Bush's reelection, although the actor moved to London in 1968.
THE FAKING OF A PRESIDENT: TRUMP'S FIRST 100 DAYS IN OFFICE
So how does a Trump foe make the big move to more progressive pastures in 2016? And of all the Trump-free countries, which is best for a soon-to-be-expat?
Here's a Daily News cheat sheet on moving your feet before First Lady Melania puts on her dancing shoes for the inaugural ball.
Enclaves for expatsThe first step of any great escape plan? Picking a destination.
The most well-rounded country
Trust expats who have already fled their countries: Singapore might be your best bet. The island nation boasts the top quality of life for expats, according to a 2015 survey of expats by InterNations, a 2 million-person strong network of migrants.
MARK J. ROZELL: SAVING THE GOP FROM DONALD TRUMP
The Asian county earned the title for its slew of high-paying jobs, welcoming atmosphere, stellar health care facilities and top-notch public transit. English, one of Singapore's four official languages, is used frequently, especially in urban areas, so communication barriers are limited for Americans.
"I love the cosmopolitan nature of the city; its international population is well-traveled & open-minded," one expat said.
As a bonus, Singapore boasts the No. 1 most efficient health care system in the world, as rated by Bloomberg. The U.S. ranks at No. 44, and could dip even lower with Trump at the helm. The billionaire has long blasted Obamacare and scoffed at government-run health care '-- even though the system seems to be working out really well for Singapore.
The cheapest (and the friendliest!) country
When it comes to personal finances, Ecuador might be the answer. It ranks No. 1 for cost of living and is high on the list for just plain happiness.
The South American country goes easy on expats' wallets, ranking No. 1 for cost of living. In Ecuador, only 9% of expats said their disposable income isn't enough, compared to a global average of 23%.
RACIST DONALD TRUMP CAN'T HIDE BEHIND DOUBTS ANYMORE
And when the massive shavings coax expats southward, you'll be greeted by tons of friendly faces. Ecuador is the easiest country for expats to make new friends, according to the InterNations report.
"Expats living in Ecuador find it the easiest out of all 64 destinations worldwide to settle down in this country," the survey says.
Plus, there are far more women in Ecuador's government than in the U.S. Here, 20 women served in the Senate this term, while 84 women were in the House of Representatives in 2015 '-- both houses were comprised of roughly 80% men. Ecuador's one-chamber National Assembly has 59 women, compared to 78 men. That should be good news to all those women Donald Trump has verbally attacked over the years.
The safest countryAustria ranked No. 1 in health, safety & well-being in the InterNations poll, a list the U.S. didn't even place on.
S.E. CUPP: DONALD TRUMP'S WIN REFLECTS A CHANGE IN GOP
A whopping 98% of those surveyed rated their personal safety positively while 95% said the country was politically stable '-- a far cry from the atmosphere Trump will foster.
Plus, Austria is a great place to raise a family, newcomers said. The country has the best availability for childcare and ranks highly for cost and quality of education, the survey said.
The most 'American' non-America countryLove Americans, but hate America? Mexico could be your new home.
There are already about 849,000 Americans living south of the border, making it home to more American-born travelers than any other country in the world, the Migration Policy Institute reports.
Fellow Americans can provide a sense of security and familiarity during such a massive life change, and no one understands your plight more than other defectors.
Yes, you'll have to worry about the tyranny of drug lords, but at least you can spend your Trump-free days talking about the American things you actually miss '-- perhaps starting with New York City Pizza. And you'll always have a friend who gets exactly why you fled your homeland that is no longer the one you prized.
Plus, fleeing to Mexico is the surest way to enrage President Trump. The bombastic billionaire has offensively suggested that Mexican immigrants are rapists and drug dealers who kill Americans and take their jobs '-- so the delightful irony of escaping to Mexico is almost too good to pass up. Just make sure to get out before he builds that wall.
The most clich(C) countryAnd then there is Canada. Our neighbor to the north has long been liberals' choice for not-so-vague emigration threats. The trend took off in 2000 on the eve of George W. Bush's first term and continued during his reelection.
But it's clich(C) for a reason: Canada's people are as friendly as the stereotypes make them out to be, there are plenty of options for education and childcare, and there's that famous universal health care.
6 ONLINE TOOLS THAT CAN HELP YOU CAST YOUR VOTE
Cape Breton Island, the Canadian spot which begged Americans to move there in the event of a Trump win, said that "Muslim people can roam freely," and "nobody has a hand gun."
"Hi Americans! Donald Trump may become the President of your country! If that happens, and you decide to get the hell out of there, might I suggest moving to Cape Breton Island," the site read. "We need people. We need you!"
Logistics, logistics, logistics: How to flee
It's Wednesday, Nov. 9. Trump has been elected, and you're ready to pack up your locally-made vegan shoes and your collection of Al Franken books. Let's concoct a plan to escape from the pending political apocalypse.
Get a work visa
Unfortunately, you can't just pick up everything you own and move across the globe. You're going to need the right documents.
Work visas through a job are likely the most secure option but they're difficult to obtain. The long process starts with applying for a job in your wannabe home. In most countries, the employers must rule out locals who may be better-suited for the job before extending an offer to foreigners.
With a job offer in hand, you can apply for a work visa sponsored through your new employer.
Teaching English can be a great way to secure a job across the seas, experts said. Earning TELF '-- Teaching English as a Foreign Language certification, which requires hours of training and a fee '-- can help you land a job in many European, Asian and South American countries.
Application requirements and process timelines vary dramatically from country to country, and work visas need to be renewed frequently. In Austria, foreigners can apply for a job seekers visa, which would allow an expat to live in the county for six months while he or she looks for work '-- but the employee will have to apply for a longer term work visa after landing the new gig.
Most nations require a foreigner to work for several years before attempting to apply for permanent residency or citizenship. Singapore, on the other hand, offers a way for foreigners to earn permanent residency right away. The nation's Professionals/Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers Scheme allows expats to apply for residency as soon as they get their work passes.
If you want to go one step further and become a citizen of another nation, get ready for a long road. That requires a lengthy legal process that starts with a temporary visa that turns into permanent resident status. Tina Turner became a Swiss citizen in 2013, relinquishing her U.S. citizenship along the way, after living abroad for nearly two decades
Go back to school far, far away
If you're interested in earning a new degree, consider applying to foreign universities. A student visa '-- which you can apply for after you've been accepted '-- can give you entry to your new home over the course of your study. While the visas are often temporary, it can be easier to apply for permanent residency once you've studied for a few years.
Retire in Trump-free bliss
If you've got the retirement income to sustain you, many countries will extend you residency rights '-- so long as you promise you won't look for work in your new homeland.
For this reason, experts encourage you to take a hard look at your budget. A couple can live comfortably on $2,600 in parts of Spain, while a comparable lifestyle would cost about $1,200 in Colombia, International Living reported. Pick a destination that will fit your budget.
Buy your way in
When in doubt, do as the Donald would do: Fork over a fortune. Many countries have investor programs that provide pathways to permanent residency and citizenship.
SEE FULL ELECTION RESULTS FROM SUPER TUESDAY
If you've got big bucks, Singapore's Global Investor Program will allow you to apply for residency. Business folks who spend $2.5 million Singapore dollars '-- about $1.78 million U.S. dollars '-- on new ventures can apply.
Don't have a small loan of $2 million dollars to give? Canada's Immigrant Investor Program works similarly, but is more budget friendly. Investors can apply for residency after funneling $800,000 Canadian dollars, just more than $500,000 U.S. dollars, into the country.
If you're looking to buy full citizenship, Austria may be your best bet. The Austrian Citizenship Act allows citizenship for applicants who have performed "extraordinary services" to benefit the nation, although it does not specify exactly what that means.
Henley & Partners, a firm that specializes in repatriation, says Austria extends citizenship for those who invest at least $10 million, although the Austrian government has refuted that claim, Reuters reported.
Try the ultimate Trump protest
Since the start of his campaign, Trump has griped about immigrants entering the U.S. illegally. The boldest American escapees may want to consider the truest form of Trump dissidence: Running across the border without a visa.
(Note: the Daily News does not endorse illegal immigration.)
Now what?Settling into a foreign land can be as daunting as getting there. The grass isn't always greener on the other, Trump-free side '-- but here are some experts' tips.
Don't expect little America
Expats who move abroad and expect their day-to-day lives to be the same are setting themselves up for failure, expat guru Cat Gaa told The News.
"Remember that any other country that isn't America just isn't America," she said. "You're moving to a foreign country. Things will be different."
GREENMAN: TRUMP IS AN EMBARRASMENT TO THE REPUBLICAN PARTY
Gaa, a Chicago native who moved to Spain in 2007, documents her life abroad on her blog, Sunshine and Siestas. The English teacher said expats who refuse to adapt to local culture can find daily tasks difficult '-- and that frustration breeds unhappiness.
Expats eager for a new life should embrace the new lifestyle too: pick up the language, adopt local customs, allow yourself to miss certain things about the U.S. and learn to love quirks of your new home.
Go with the flow
Expat life is stressful. On top of learning new customs, there's a never-ending bureaucracy '-- renewing visas, keeping up with your American taxes, requesting absentee ballots to vote against President Trump in 2020.
Gaa said staying calm and not sweating the small things are key to enjoying your new life.
"We have this saying in Spain, 'manana, manana,' 'tomorrow, tomorrow,'" she said. "Relax and go with the flow. Try again tomorrow."
Make friends with other expats
It's important to embrace local culture and befriend natives who can help you learn the lay of the land, but it's just as important to stay in touch with your roots, American Travel writer Karen McCann told The News. Finding other Americans living abroad can be a comforting reminder of home.
"It's great to have someone who speaks your language, who gets your jokes, who can commiserate with you when something miserable happens back home," said McCann, who is based in Spain.
McCann, who runs travel blog Living Life Abroad, suggested attending expat networking events. InterNations, the expat social network, hosts plenty across the globe.
Accept that you'll never be a local
You can profess your love for your new home, but never call yourself a native, McCann said.
"I will never be part of social circles that were formed at baptism," said McCann, who has lived in Seville since 2004. "They will always look at me as a little bit of an oddity. I will always be 'the American,' even to people I've known for 10 or 12 years."
But even those without deep roots can eventually fit in.
"You'll become comfortable. You'll figure things out. It will feel like home," she said. "I have definitely gotten the hang of being an expat."
Lifestyles of the fleeing and famousIf you decide to flee Trump's America, you might be in good company. A slew of celebrities have threatened to move in the wake of a pending President Trump.
Al Sharpton
He said he's planning on leaving the U.S. if Trump becomes president, but not because he wants to '-- but because he'll be forced to.
"I'm also reserving my ticket to get out of here if he wins. Only because he'd probably have me deported anyhow," he joked at a Center for American Progress Action Fund event last week. The liberal pundit didn't say where those tickets would take him.
Barry Diller
The billionaire also said he's ready to pack up his fortune and run if his fellow businessman Trump takes the White House.
"If Donald Trump doesn't fall, I'll either move out of the country or join the resistance," the California native said last fall.
No word on where the media executive will go, but with his Belgian-born wife, fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, Europe would be a strong option.
Whoopi Goldberg
The actress and New York native said the way Trump stereotypes and demonizes groups of people '-- Mexican immigrants and Muslims among others '-- has made her consider moving.
"I don't think that's America. I don't want it to be America. Maybe it's time for me to move, you know," she said on "The View" in January. "I can afford to go."
Samuel L. Jackson
The Washington, D.C.-born actor may be heading across the Atlantic in November.
"If that motherf----- becomes President, I'll move my black ass to South Africa," he joked on Jimmy Kimmel when asked if Trump had a shot at the White House.
Jon Stewart
Another country is not far enough.
"I would consider getting in a rocket and going to another planet, because clearly this planet's gone bonkers," the comedian said at the Emmys last year.
Jennifer Lawrence
The "Joy" actress hasn't committed to moving if Trump is elected, only because no nations will exist in the aftermath of President Trump.
"If Donald Trump becomes President, that will be the end of the world," she told People last year.
Tags:donald trump ,2016 election ,super tuesday ,ecuador ,singapore ,austria ,mexico ,canada ,george w. bush ,colombia ,spain ,migrant crisis ,al sharpton ,barry diller ,whoopi goldberg ,samuel l. jackson ,jon stewart
Jeb Bush Believes Trump Campaign May All Be A Conspiracy, See His Theory Here
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 17:31
Jeb Bush, former GOP presidential candidate, took to Twitter to propose that Trump's campaign may all just be one big conspiracy.
Maybe Donald negotiated a deal with his buddy @HillaryClinton. Continuing this path will put her in the White House. https://t.co/AlvByiSrMn
'-- Jeb Bush (@JebBush) December 8, 2015
The Clinton Crime Family Exposed
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 19:47
We'd like to welcome you to the Clinton Library -- dedicated to preserving the true legacy of the 42nd President of the United States.
Bill Clinton promised as President that his would be the "most ethical administration in the history of the country.'' As you explore the pages of this website, you can decide for yourself whether he lived up to that promise.
Bill Clinton has surrounded himself with criminalsThroughout their term in office, Bill Clinton and Al Gore met with known criminals who either gave large amounts of money to the Democrats or were brought in by those giving huge sums of money to the Democrats. These people included convicted drug dealer Jorge Cabrera; a Chinese arms dealer named Wang Jun; and Grigory Lutchansky, whose company, Nordex, was on Clinton's CIA watch list and who was denied entry into Canada because he failed a background check.
There was also the appearance of foreign policy quid pro quos involving Indonesia, Paraguay, Guam, Vietnam and China. Even more disturbing are allegations of economic espionage, communist Chinese involvement in U.S. elections, and compromising U.S. national security - all in the name of helping the Democrats and securing Bill Clinton's reelection.
There were about 70 Congressional witnesses who pled the Fifth Amendment right not to self-incriminate (or chosen to flee the country) in the Clinton-Gore dollars for political influence scam. In a round of testimony by FBI Director Louis Freeh before Congress, Rep. Dan Burton asked:
Mr. Freeh, over 65 people have invoked the 5th Amendment or fled the country in the course of the Committee s investigation. Have you ever experienced so many unavailable witnesses in any matter in which you ve prosecuted or in which you ve been involved?Freeh responded: Actually, I have.Burton asked: You have? Give me, give me a rundown on that real quickly.Freeh: I spent about 16 years doing organized crime cases in New York City...
Bill Clinton and Al Gore have conspired with known criminals
Jorge Cabrera, a convicted felon from Florida, gave the DNC $20,000 and then attended a political reception in Miami at which Cabrera got his picture taken with Al Gore. Cabrera was soon invited to a December 1995 pre-Christmas event at the White House and was photographed with First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton. The next month in January 1996, undercover agents arrested Cabrera with three tons of Colombian cocaine. Prior to Cabrera's January arrest, he had been arrested twice on drug charges, and pleaded guilty to non-drug-related charges in both cases. Cabrera is serving a 19-year prison sentence. (The Detroit News, 2/16/97; Miami Herald, 1/19/97; The Washington Post, 10/20/96)
Yah Lin "Charlie" Trie, President Clinton's longtime friend and a Democratic fund-raiser, was at the center of the 1996 campaign finance controversy and eventually plead guilty to two charges in his Arkansas trial (May 21, 1999). Trie plead guilty to a felony charge of causing false statements and a misdemeanor count of making political contributions in the names of others.
It was Charlie Trie who arranged for international Chinese weapons dealer, Wang Jun, chairman of CITIC, the chief investment arm of the PRC, and Poly Technologies (a "front company for the PRC military") to meet with Mr. Clinton at a Democrat Party event at the White House on Feb. 6, 1996. CITIC Ka Wah Bank includes 28 branches in Hong Kong, a branch in Macau, a branch in Shanghai and its PRC-incorporated wholly-owned subsidiary, CITIC Ka Wah Bank (China) Limited, which is headquartered in Shenzhen with branches in Shanghai and Beijing. The Bank also has branches in New York and Los Angeles.
At the time Clinton met with Wang, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and the Customs Service were wrapping up an investigation which caught Wang's company smuggling at least $4 million worth of 2,000 illegal AK-47 assault weapons destined for gang members in California. President Clinton later admitted Wang's attendance at the White House was "clearly inappropriate."
Jeffrey Epstein Epstein's sexual exploits have been documented since 2005, when a woman in Palm Beach contacted police saying that her 14-year-old daughter had been paid $300 to massage him and then have sex. The claim prompted a nearly year-long investigation that led to the eventual charge of soliciting prostitution which came as part of a plea deal. He spent 13 months of a 18-month sentence in jail and remains a registered sex offender. Since that time, approximately 40 other women have accused Epstein of sexual misconduct.
Bill Clinton was very close to Jeffrey Epstein. Court records show that the convicted billionaire pedophile that pimped out underage girls to powerful men had 21 contact phone numbers for Bill Clinton in his computerized phone directory. Clinton, meanwhile, flew on multiple occasions in the same plane to Epstein's private Caribbean island, Little St James, between 2002 and 2005 as he developed his philanthropic post-presidential career. It would later be alleged in court that Epstein organised orgies on that same private island in the US Virgin Islands. (The Independent)
Court documents also claim that Clinton was friends with an unnamed woman who kept images of naked underage children on her computer, helped to recruit underage children for Epstein'... and photographed underage females in sexually explicit poses'. While Clinton cut off ties with Epstein abruptly around the time of Epstein's arrest, this woman's abuses apparently did not end their relationship as she was reportedly one of the 400 guests at Chelsea Clinton's 2010 wedding. (Daily Mail)
Grigory Loutchansky, linked by Interpol to the Russian mafia, money laundering, drug trafficking, nuclear smuggling across the Baltics, and international arms trading, attended a Democrat Party White House dinner in October of 1993. Loutchansky got a private two-minute meeting and a picture with Mr. Clinton. (The Washington Times, 2/11/97; The Detroit News, 2/16/97; New York Post, 11/1/96; Time, 7/8/96) Loutchansky was invited back to a second DNC dinner in July 1995. A year before, Canada had blocked Loutchansky from entering Canada because he had failed a background check. Canadian officials also had questions about the source of Loutchansky's Nordex company's assets. (The Washington Times, 3/1/97) Both of Clinton's CIA Directors James Woolsey and John Deutch described Loutchansky's Nordex company as an "organization associated with Russian criminal activity."Eric Wynn, a twice-convicted securities promoter who pleaded guilty to stock manipulation that benefited a member of the Bonanno organized crime family and who served two years in prison for theft and tax charges, attended a December 1995 White House coffee with Clinton. In 1996, Wynn attended four other DNC fund-raising events involving Clinton. Wynn has been arrested five times during the last six months while out on bail for aggravated assault on a police officer, resisting arrest, aggravated assault with a motor vehicle, violation of a restraining order, terroristic threats and driving while intoxicated. At least one of the arrests occurred between DNC fund-raisers Wynn attended in 1996 with Clinton. (The Detroit News, 2/16/97; The Washington Post, 2/20/97; The Star-Ledger, 2/20/97)Roger Tamraz, an international fugitive from Interpol, donated $177,000 to Democrats and the DNC through his companies and attended several White House dinners and coffees in 1995-1996. Tamraz is a former financier wanted, according to a 1989 Interpol warrant, in Lebanon for embezzling $200 million from his failed bank. On June 2, 1995, Tamraz was briefed by a National Security Council (NSC) expert on Russia at the same time he was negotiating a multibillion-dollar deal to build a pipeline from oil reserves from the Caspian Sea to Turkey through Azerbaijan and Armenia. On July 26, Tamraz contributed $20,000 to the DNC. After the meeting occurred, then-DNC Party Chairman Don Fowler called an NSC official to try to overturn a recommendation that Tamraz not attend high-level White House meetings. Tamraz went on to attend four more White House events with Clinton which included receptions, dinners and the premiere of the movie "Independence Day." Tamraz, through his New York-based oil company, gave $50,000 to the DNC after going to a DNC sponsored White House reception on Sept. 11, 1995, and a dinner four days later. In October, Tamraz contributed another $100,000 at the direction of the DNC to the Virginia Democrat Party using his Tamoil Inc., company. Tamraz also had coffee with Gore on Oct. 5, 1995, and with Clinton on April 1, 1996.Russ Barakat, a south Florida Democrat Party official, was indicted on criminal charges just five days after his coffee meeting at the White House in April 1995. Ultimately, Barakat was convicted for tax evasion. A Florida newspaper was full of stories about Barakat's problems with the law before his White House visit, but he was asked in for coffee anyway.Norman Hsu, former Democratic fundraiser, was sentenced to more than 24 years in prison in 2009 by a judge who accused him of funding his fraud by manipulating the political process in a way that 'strikes at the very core of our democracy.' U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero sentenced the 58-year-old Hsu, who raised money for Hillary Rodham Clinton and others, to 20 years in prison for his guilty plea to fraud charges and another four years and four months in prison for his conviction at trial for breaking campaign finance laws.Chung Lo contributed $10,300 to the DNC. The bulk of the money was given in July 1996, the same month Ms. Lo was arrested on 14 counts of bank and mortgage fraud. Lo's arrest came four days before she was to host a $400,000 Asian American fund-raiser featuring Clinton. The event was abruptly canceled. Lo was convicted of tax evasion in the 1980s under the name of Esther Chu. Lo had attended a White House coffee and a fund-raising event involving First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and Vice President Gore.Campaign FinanceIn October 1996, the Clinton/Gore campaign, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Commerce Department engaged in covering up a Democrat political fund-raising scandal.
Three former Clinton administration officials have refused to give the U.S. Congress documents subpoenaed for investigations of Democrat fund-raising -- claiming a Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination. The three are: former Associate Attorney General Webster Hubbell, former Commerce Department political appointee John Huang and Mark Middleton, a former aide to the White House chief of staff. (Associated Press, 2/28/97)
Others have fled the country to evade indictments and answering questions.
John Huang was involved in fund-raising while he was a political appointee at the Commerce Department.
Huang, a former U.S. representative of the Asian conglomerate Lippo Group, despite assertions of having avoided any contact with any Commerce Department matters involving Lippo, apparently violated federal conflict-of-interest laws by joining the administration's Indonesia Advocacy-Financing Working Group which dealt with projects involving Lippo. Huang aggressively argued for a new U.S. trade policy toward Vietnam only one day after joining the Commerce Department in July 1994, and pushed the issue for 17 months while the Lippo Group sought to expand its business in Vietnam. (The Washington Times, 12/12/96; 11/27/96)While still at the Commerce Department, Huang traveled coast to coast to raise money for the Democrat Party and brought in more than $150,000 in donations before he formally left his senior Commerce Department post, according to records obtained by House investigators. Political fund-raising by federal employees is prohibited by the Hatch Act. (The Washington Times, 2/19/97)John Huang expressed a particular interest in gathering secret intelligence about China, according to testimony by a CIA officer who briefed Huang 37 times. His testimony was taken as part of a lawsuit filed by Judicial Watch on whether Democratic donors were rewarded with trips on trade missions.EPA Administrator Carol Browner used the EPA to campaign against Republicans running on the Contract with America, an illegal use of the executive branch for political campaigning.
A bipartisan letter from the House Government Reform and Oversight Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs on March 21, 1995, charges the Environmental Protection Agency and its administrator, Carol M. Browner, with violating the federal Anti-Lobbying Act by faxing unsolicited material opposing the Republican-sponsored regulatory reform package to various corporations and public-interest groups.Senior Advisor, Bruce Lensey, as treasurer for the Clinton gubernatorial campaign in 1990, signed withdrawals from Perry County Bank, the president of which has pled guilty to conspiring to conceal these withdrawals from the IRS and FEC.
Kim Weissman writes in a Congress Action update on July 13, 1997,
"One of the many troubling aspects of this affair is how the cesspool of corruption which the Clintons brought to Washington can cause even the most honorable men to prostitute their principles, attempting to defend the indefensible.
John Glenn was an honorable man, a true American hero. A Marine, one of America's first astronauts, the first American to ride a rocket into earth orbit at a time when our rockets had the nasty habit of routinely blowing up in people's faces. His bravery, his patriotism, his honor were above reproach and beyond question. Until Bill Clinton came to town. And in a few short years this bona fide hero has transformed himself into nothing more than a party hack, in service to monumental presidential corruption. Once a man throws his honor on the trash heap, it can never be reclaimed. And Glenn is not alone among democrats compromising their integrity to protect Bill Clinton. As for the media, which has instituted a virtual news blackout in which live coverage is nonexistent and then whines that nobody cares, which ignores crimes, espionage, and possible treason, and shamelessly peddles the democrat line that "the system is broken", their ethics and principles in this matter are beneath contempt. As usual. The media see these hearings as their chance to enact "reform" which will enhance their power even further, and subversion of our government and treason in high office is of no interest. The integrity of our government and safety of the nation ranks below their self-aggrandizement."
Clinton's Criminal AppointeesAttorney General Janet Reno fabricated charges of child molestation against the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas, ordering the use of military equipment and the use of chemical agents against citizens of the United States. Eighty-six men, women, and children died after FBI agents used grenade launchers to mount a CS gas attack on their compound. Larry Potts'--who coordinated the Waco raid and was censured for his role in the 1992 Ruby Ridge, Idaho, shoot-out -- was promoted to deputy director of the FBI by Reno.
It was revealed in 2010 by Dick Morris, a longtime friend of Clinton and political advisor during his first term in office, that Janet Reno essentially blackmailed Bill Clinton to re-appoint her to a second term as Attornry General.
He told Sean Hannity that the President was not going to appoint Attorney General Janet Reno to a second term in office following the federal barrage on the Branch Davidian ranch at Mount Carmel.
"Bill Clinton orchestrated that takeover and in fact was so ashamed of what he did in Waco that he was not going to appoint Janet Reno to a second four year term" Morris stated. "She told him in a meeting right before the inauguration day for his new term, that 'if you don't appoint me, I'm gonna tell the truth about Waco' and that forced Clinton's hand in reappointing her."
With the apparent approval of President Fidel Castro, in a pre-dawn raid of the Gonzalez home in Miami, Janet Reno ordered heavily armed INS agents to storm the house and snatch the young Elian Gonzalez from his relatives there. Outside, more armed thugs fired pepper spray into the angry crowd as they took away the crying and screaming 6-year-old boy.
More than 20 federal agents arrived at the home shortly before 5 a.m., using rams on the home's chain-link fence and front door to force their way in. Inside, hiding in a closet, Elian's great-aunt and one of the fishermen who rescued Elian, Donato Dalrymple held Elian in his arms as the federal thugs told him, "give me the boy or I'll shoot you." A short time later, a woman and man brought Elian out of the home as he was screaming, "Help me! Help me! Don't take me away!" in Spanish.
This unconstitutional federal raid on a private and lawful home, seizing a person accused of nothing has been perhaps Clinton's most tyrannical acts of despotism.
Washington lawyer, Clinton confidant and golfing partner, Vernon Jordan, was deposed by Ken Starr for his role in obtaining $50,000 in ''consulting fees'' for Webster Hubbell, between the time Hubbell left the Justice Department and entered federal prison. Starr was trying to determine if those fees were ''hush money.'' That money came from Revlon Corporation, where Mr. Jordan sits on the board of directors.
Jordan, at the request of Clinton's personal secretary, Betty Currie, had also helped Monica Lewinsky search for a new job and a lawyer after she left the White House.
Vernon Jordan's relationship with Bill Clinton goes back to a 1991 Bilderberger meeting where Clinton was introduced to the group by Jordan. The Bilderbergers arrogantly plot the subversion and silent takeover of constitutional governments everywhere. Their goal is a World Government run exclusively by their hand-picked puppets. It was shortly after attending the 1991 Bilderberger meeting, Governor Bill Clinton was selected to be the next President of the United States.
President Clinton has done a masterful job of placing "fall-guys" between himself and his administration's indigenous corruption scandals. Independent Counsels have indicted and jailed senior administration officials for corruption, but Mr. Clinton has always maintained arms-length plausible deniability. Clinton's defensive modus operandi: admit nothing, deny everything and make counterallegations.
It was alleged George Stephanopoulos, Senior Advisor, took a $600,000 loan below market interest and with insufficient collateral from NationsBank, a bank having business before the Clinton Administration, lied to Congress during Whitewater hearings, and attempted to have Whitewater investigator Jay Stephens at the RTC fired.Secretary of Labor, Robert Reich lied to Congress when he wrote that there were no memos circulating in the Labor Department instructing staff to gather political material against the Contract with America. Such memos were later published.Former Assitant Secretary of HUD, Roberta Achtenberg violated the First Amendment when she ordered HUD lawyers to silence citizens who spoke out against planned housing projects. She also exceeded her authority when she had HUD staff threaten Allentown County to withdraw an "Use of English language encouraged" ordinance.On Feb. 12, 1995, the Los Angeles Times reveals Veterans Affairs Secretary Jesse Brown made 20 trips at taxpayers' expense to his hometown of Chicago'--rarely attending any official events.Former Secretary of Defense, Les Aspin, through criminal negligence was responsible for the death of Army Rangers in Somalia. He has never been held accountable in public hearings. He subseqently resigned and is now deceased.The Los Angeles Times revealed on June 25, '95, Energy Secretary Hazel O'Leary, at taxpayers' expense, routinely upgrades her airline flights to business and first class and stays at expensive hotels'--seeking reimbursement from the government at as much as 150 percent of the maximum level allowed. In Jan. '96, the General Accounting Office audit finds $255,000 in undocumented expenses from Hazel O'Leary's trips abroad. In April, '96, a General Accounting Office audit showed that the 14 overseas trips Energy Secretary Hazel O'Leary took in 1994 and 1995 netted only about $448 million worth of business -- not the $2 billion her administration claimed -- and that some of the deals concluded on the trips benefitted foreign firms more than U.S. companies. An Energy Department inspector general report stated that part of the $4.6 million Secretary Hazel O'Leary spent on overseas trips may have been spent illegally.Chief of Staff to the First Lady, Margaret Williams obstructed justice when she removed documents from the office of Vince Foster. She lied to Congress about removing those documents.Treasury Department Employee, Joshua Steiner, lied to Congress about conversations with White House personnel about the RTC and has resigned.Former Chief of Staff, Mack McLarty conspired with Democratic Congressional Leadership to block access to vital documents in a Congressional hearing.USIA Inspector General, Marian Benett, covered up credit-card fraud by USIA Inspector General staff.Federico Pena, Secretary of Transportation has been accused of awarding State and federal contracts to companies in which he had a financial interest.Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, Deval Patrick was accused of using extortion to force banks to give preferential treatment to minorities.Clinton administration officials indictedHenry Cisneros, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development became the second Clinton administration official to be indicted.
The Justice Department probe began on Sept. 22, 1994, it's investigating whether Housing and Urban Development Secretary Henry Cisneros lied to the FBI about payments he made to his former mistress, Linda Jones. In March '95 Attorney General Janet Reno concluded HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros made yearly payments to Jones of between $42,000 and $60,000'--contradicting Cisneros' claim to the FBI that his yearly payments totaled no more than $10,000. In May 1995, an independent counsel was named to investigate if the lies HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros told to the FBI constitute a felony.
On Dec. 11, 1997 a federal grand jury in Washington handed down a 21-count indictment, charging Cisneros and Jones variously with conspiracy, obstruction of justice, fraud and perjury. Evidence including 40 hours of secretly recorded telephone calls, IRS records and canceled checks suggests to prosecutors that Cisneros committed perjury and conspired with his ex-mistress and others to lie about the hush money. Those records indicate Cisneros paid Jones about $250,000 and continued to pay her after he came to Washington, including payments totaling some $40,000 prior to his interview with the FBI.
Former Agriculture Secretary Mike Espy was indicted on charges he accepted illegal gifts and lied to investigators. In August, 1994 Attorney General Janet Reno asked for an independent counsel to investigate Agriculture Secretary Mike Espy for accepting gifts from companies regulated by his department. On Oct. 3, 1994, Mike Espy resigns amid charges he accepted gifts and perks barred by federal ethics laws and rules.
In Dec. 1997, Tyson Foods Inc., the nation's largest poultry processor, pleaded guilty to giving former U.S. Agriculture Secretary Mike Espy more than $12,000 in illegal gifts, and agreed to pay $6 million in fines and investigative expenses.
Ultimately, Independent Counsel Smaltz s investigation of Agriculture Secretary Espy, has resulted in 14 indictments yielding 2 convictions, 3 guilty pleas, 4 acquittals, 3 companies paying enormous fines, and 3 defendants awaiting trial or retrial.
In the tenth major probe into high level Clinton appointees, the Justice Department has opened an investigation into whether or not Labor Secretary Alexis Herman was involved in a scheme of influence peddling during '94-'96 when she was a White House aide. The seventh independent counsel of the Clinton era will investigate influence peddling and corrupt campaign fundraising allegations against Labor Secretary Alexis Herman. In response to these allegations, President Clinton remarked, "I don t believe that for a minute."
Under investigation for overbilling clients, mail fraud and tax evasion, Associate Attorney General Webster Hubbell resigned on March 14, 1994. On Dec. 6, '94 Hubbell pleads guilty and on Aug. 7, 1995 he began serving 21-month sentence for defrauding the federal government and tax evasion. A June 24, 1997 Los Angeles Times story revealed a City of Los Angeles audit found Webster Hubbell cheated Los Angeles out of almost $25,000 by lying about the consulting work he did for them.
The Justice Department began investigating Commerce Secretary Ron Brown on Feb. 19, 1995 for violation of tax and financial disclosure laws and whether he took money from people seeking to influence him. Apparently, he took bribes from almost everybody saying it is part of the way Washington works. Ron Brown was still under investigation by an Independent Counsel when he died mysteriously in a plane crash in 1996. Former Brown business associate and lover Nolanda Hill revealed on the June 18, 1997 ABC Prime time Live that deceased Cabinet Secretary Ron Brown was set to accept a $700,000 cash payoff from Vietnam in return for pushing normalized trade relations with the communist country.
WhitewaterOn Jan. 20, 1994, an independent counsel is named to investigate the Clintons' personal, political and business finances in the 1980s, including their role in the Whitewater Development Corporation. As a result, Clinton's cronies begin to fall around him.
Former Arkansas Municipal Court Judge David Hale was indicted for defrauding the federal government by misrepresenting Capital Management's paid-in capital. David Hale pleads guilty on Mar. 22, 1994 to conspiracy and mail fraud.
Arkansas Gov. Jim Guy Tucker was indicted on three felony charges of making false statements and conspiracy to defraud the United States in the Whitewater venture. Later, 11 new counts of conspiracy, wire fraud, making false statements and misapplying funds are added. When Clinton loyalist Judge Henry Woods dismisses the original three-count indictment against Gov. Tucker, independent counsel Kenneth Starr files an immediate appeal. Tucker is eventually found guilty of fraud in connection with the failed savings and loan institution and faces 10 years in prison and $500,000 in fines. After Tucker's resignation as Governor, Lt. Gov. Mike Huckabee replaced him.
Clinton's partner in the Whitewater venture, Jim McDougal, was indicted on 19 counts of conspiracy, mail fraud, making false statements and false bank reports, and misapplying funds. McDougal was found guilty of fraud in connection with the failed savings and loan institution. Jim McDougal was serving his 3 year sentence for bank fraud at the Fort Worth Federal Medical Center in Texas, a facility operated by the federal Bureau of Prisons for inmates who need medical attention. Just prior to another round of testimony before Kenneth Starr's grand jury, Jim McDougal suffered a heart attack while in solitary confinement, which may have been brought on by the diuretics forced on him.
Susan McDougal was indicted on eight counts of conspiracy, wire fraud, mail fraud and making false statements.
On Feb. 6, 1996, President Bill Clinton is subpoenaed in the bank fraud and conspiracy trial of James and Susan McDougal, his partners in the failed Whitewater development project and on Mar. 26th, the White House agrees to have Clinton videotape his testimony.The White House releases on Feb 20, more than 100 pages of "mistakenly overlooked" Whitewater records subpoenaed in 1994.On May 16, 1996, the Senate Whitewater committee votes to subpoena FBI reports showing that Hillary Clinton's fingerprints were found on hundreds of pages of Rose law Firm documents found in the White House residence quarters in January. The records, subpoenaed in 1994, and had been missing. In a two-page affidavit to Senate Whitewater investigators on June 17th, Hillary Clinton states that she "does not know" how her Rose Law Firm billing records ended up in the White House.Criticized for attempting to quash a Whitewater investigation at the RTC through White House liaisons, obstructing justice in the Foster suicide investigation by blocking access, removing documents, lying about his removal of documents, and by retrieving Foster's pager from Park Police, White House Counsel Bernard Nussbaum resigns on Mar. 5, 1994 and is under investigation for lying to Congress.
Director of White House Administration, Patsy Thomasson, lied to Congress about the composition of the Health Care Task Force and the size of its budget and obstructed justice when she removed documents from the office of Vince Foster.
Deputy Treasury Secretary Roger Altman resigned on Aug. 17, 1994 amid charges of lying to Congress in his testimony concerning Whitewater/Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC) investigation.
Treasury Counsel Jean Hanson resigns on Aug. 18, 1994 amid charges that she briefed the White House on Whitewater/RTC investigation.
On Dec. 15, 1995, Former White House lawyer William Kennedy refuses to comply with Senate Whitewater Committee subpoena demanding Whitewater-related documents.
Jury selection began on June 17, 1996 in the Whitewater-related trial of Herby Branscum and Robert Hill, two Arkansas bankers indicted on charges of fraud. Prosecutors maintain Hill and Branscum funneled $7,000 to then-Gov. Bill Clinton's 1990 re-election campaign.
Deputy Chief of Staff, Harold Ickes, broke into New York Republican headquarters in 1970 but has never been indicted for this crime which was similar to what the Watergate Plumbers spent time in jail for. He also lied to Congress about his involvement in the Whitewater coverup.
Former White House Counsel, Lloyd Cutler lied to Congress and attempted to withhold vital information from Congress. He obtained a confidential Treasury report and showed it to witnesses before they testified before Congress in the Whitewater hearings. He again lied to Congress when he denied having shown testimony to witnesses. Lloyd Cutler has resigned.
Co-President, Hillary ClintonLike husband Bill, Hillary Rodham Clinton is also awash in controversy. Clinton friend and advisor, Dick Morris says about Hillary Clinton, "Hillary Clinton scandals are a gift that keeps on giving."
In addition to Benghazi and the scandal involving her emails as Secretary of State, there was Travelgate, Filegate, Whitewater, the mystery surrounding the death of Vincent Foster, and a cattle futures ''miracle'' that netted Clinton a lot of money.
Hillary has consistently shown she believes to be above the law.
Back in 1978 and 79, while First Lady of Arkansas, it's been alledged she took a $100,000 bribe, camouflaged as futures trades, from Arkansas's largest employer, Tyson Foods Inc. She engaged in a series of trades of cattle futures contracts and netted a $100,000 windfall from cattle futures after a $1,000 investment. Hillary Clinton's defenders maintained that she had made her own decisions, that her own money was constantly at risk, and that she made both winning and losing trades. There never was any official governmental investigation into, or findings about, or charges brought regarding Hillary Rodham's cattle futures trading.
It's been alledged she speculated in Health Care industry futures while overseeing legislative reform of same.
Failed to correct false testimony by co-defendant Ira Magaziner in Health Care trial.Ordered members of the Health Care Task Force to shred documents that were the target of a court probe.Hillary Clinton became the first First Lady to testify before a grand jury when she was subpoenaed by the Whitewater grand jury. Ultimately, no charges were brought against her.
In 1996, Hillary was accused by the Senate Special Whitewater Committee of ordering chief White House counsel, Bernard Nussbaum, to remove potentially damaging files related to Whitewater from Vince Foster's office on the night of his death and telling aides to lie about their removal. The Senate Whitewater committee subpoenaed FBI reports showing that Hillary Clinton's fingerprints were found on hundreds of pages of Rose law Firm documents found in the White House residence quarters in January. Of course, Hillary denied everything. In a two-page affidavit to Senate Whitewater investigators on June 17th, Hillary Clinton states that she "does not know" how her Rose Law Firm billing records ended up in the White House.
Obstructed justice by ordering the shredding of Vince Foster's documents in the Rose Law Firm.Obstructed justice by keeping her billing records, a document sought under subpoena, in the White House residence.Lied to investigators about her knowledge about billing records.Lied to investigators about her involvement in the Castle Grande land flip con.TravelGateAssociate White House counsel William Kennedy, White house director of administration David Watkins, and White House aide Patsy Thomasson was accused of fabricating charges against White House Travel Office personnel to have the business taken over by Clinton friends. They coerced FBI and IRS agents into complicity with this scheme. Thomasson ordered the removal of hard drives from computers in the travel Office three days before the firings of seven Travel Office staff and just two days before an audit of the office began. The Special Committe investigating Whitewater included Thomasson in their conclusion that the evidence established that White House officials engaged in a pattern of deliberate obstruction of, and interference with, efforts by law enforcement authorities to conduct their several investigations into Vince Foster's death. Kennedy and Watkins have resigned. Thomasson has moved on to become Chief of Staff at the Ben Barnes Group in Washington DC and serves in a liaison capacity between BBG and Capital Hill.
Travel Office employee, Catherine Cornelius removed documents from White House Travel Office. Because those documents later became the subject of a trial against Office Director Billy Dale, that could amount to obstruction of justice.
Ordered the use of the FBI to discredit Travel Office employees.Lied to investigators about her involvement in the firing of Travel Office Employees. In May 1993, the co-president was accused of having a central hand in firing several long-time employees of the White House Travel Office, the better to give the pricey travel business to her Hollywood pals, Linda Bloodworth Thomason and Harry Thomason. Hillary denied everything and when Whitewater Independent Counsel Robert Ray investigated Travelgate, he concluded that there was substantial evidence that involved Hillary but not enough to warrant an indictment.The White House finally releases more than 2,000 documents on June 25, 1996, relating to the travel office firings, originally requested two years prior by congressional investigators.Filegate On June 6, 1996, The Los Angeles Times reported that the White House sought confidential FBI background documents on fired White House Travel Office chief Billy Dale. The next day, the White House admits it ordered FBI files of more than 330 people, including dozens of Republican leaders, saying it was working off an "outdated list" of people who had applied for access to the White House. Eventually it is discovered that about 1,000 people's FBI files were obtained by Clinton officials.
One of those people whose FBI file was obtained by the White House was Linda Tripp, who blazed onto the national scene when she released to Independent Council, Ken Starr, secretly taped conversations she had with Monica Lewinsky about the sexual conduct of the President. Tripp's connection to FBI files also include her witnessing fellow employees copying FBI files onto White House computers when she worked in the Clinton White House. (The Washington Times, 9/4/98) Tripp is also at the center of conspiracy theories involving Vince Foster's suicide. Tripp had worked in the early Clinton administration in 1992 as executive assistant to Bernie Nussbaum, then the White House counsel. Tripp first surfaced in the original report on Foster's death by former independent counsel Robert Fiske. Fiske said in his report, that Tripp was the last person to speak to Foster before he committed suicide. It was also Tripp who provided testimony on what happened inside Foster's office after word of his death surfaced, again leading to questions of impropriety.
Tripp also is the original source of information regarding Kathryn Willey's reported claim that Clinton had kissed and fondled her, claiming to be the first person to talk to Willey after she left the Oval Office.
In June 1996, White House security head Craig Livingstone, a political operative and former bouncer, illegally obtained over 700 FBI files of mostly White House personnel from former Republican administrations.On the 9th, White House Chief of Staff Leon Panetta offers a public apology for the White House's obtaining the FBI files: "Mistakes were made. It is inexcusable."President Clinton later offered a direct apology and calls the FBI files controversy a "completely honest bureaucratic snafu."FBI Director Louis Freeh said on June 14, that he and his agency were "victimized." He also says that the White House acquisition of the files represented "egregious violations of privacy."The Washington Post reports on the 16th, Secret Service officials say the tracking system they used for White House passholders could not have generated the supposedly outdated list that the White House claimed it used to request FBI files on the now more than 400 former passholders.White House places personnel security office director Craig Livingstone, directly responsible for obtaining the FBI files, on administrative leave.House Government Reform and Oversight Committee begins hearings on FBI file affair on June 19th. Livingstone tells officials that the office holding the files was often left unsecured and that people with the lowest level security clearance were allowed access to the room. ABC News reports that Livingstone himself did not get proper security clearance until more than a year after he began his job as head of security.Attorney General Janet Reno calls on FBI to expand its probe to determine how and why White House obtained files on former Reagan and Bush administration staff members - later she reverses her earlier call for the FBI to lead the inquiry, and announces that Whitewater independent counsel Kenneth Starr should investigate how the White House acquired the FBI files in an improper manner.New documents on June 25th, show that a total of more than 700 FBI background files were improperly obtained by the White House.Craig Livingstone resigns from the White House staff on June 26th.Anthony Marceca informs the Senate Judiciary Committee on June 28th, that he is taking the Fifth Amendment and will not answer any more questions concerning the White House acquisition of FBI background files.The diaries of the Dick Morris' call girl, Sherry Rowlands, noted that Mr Morris described Mrs Clinton as the prime mover in the scandal when confidential FBI personnel files on leading Republicans were taken to the White House and scrutinised by political fixers. "It was Hillary," Mr Morris replied when Miss Rowlands asked who was to blame for the scandal. "She ordered them. She's a paranoid lady; she did it."Hillary Clinton's elitist attitude and behaviors have continued after leaving the Whitehouse.
Secretary of State, Hillary ClintonPerhaps the most flagrant behavior of Hillary was her response to the 2012 attacks on the US mission in Benghazi, Libya resulting in the deaths of four American citizens, including U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens.
"What difference, at this point does it make?" Clinton boomed in a 2013 Sentate hearing.
It makes allot of difference to freedom loving Americans. Why did Secretary Clinton deny requests for additional security at the consulate prior to the attack? Why did the Whitehouse and State Department represent the attack as a spontaneous protest over an anti-Muslim video? Were they covering up a CIA presence in Bahghazi smuggling weapons from Libya to anti-Assad rebels in Syria?
Many questions remained unanswered and will likely continue to be unanswered for the foreseable future.
After leaving the State Department, Hillary joined her daughter and husband as named members of the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation. The foundation began accepting donations from foreign governments. Clinton resigned from the foundation's board in April 2015, when she began her presidential campaign.
Later it was learned by the House committee investigating the attack on the US mission in Benghazi that Secretary Clinton violated government rules by exclusively using a private email account kept on her private computer server in her home during her four years at the State Department. And, in typical Clinton style, she lied. Clinton's office said she only used one private email address during her time at the State Department, while the New York Times discovered that Hillary used more than one address. Clinton asserted that her use of a private email account was aboveboard and allowed under State Department rules. She further asserted that she did not send or receive classified material on the private account. However, a government review of the emails determined that some of the emails were deemed classified.
Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin and a budding international bromance - The Washington Post
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 04:55
Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump has said a lot of nice things about Russian president Vladimir Putin. Putin finally responded on Dec. 17. (Gillian Brockell/The Washington Post)
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin never shy away from voicing their disdain. But there's at least one thing both men say they would enjoy: Each other's company.
The budding bromance between two of the world's brashest figures inched forward Thursday when Putin called Trump "very talented" and the "absolute leader" in the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign.
''He's a very lively man, talented without doubt,'' Putin said after a three-hour news conference, according to the Interfax news service. He also described Trump as someone he could "get along with" and a "bright and talented" man, while welcoming the American billionaire's commitment to deeper relations with Russia.
[Is Donald Trump an American Putin?]
The comments were a reciprocation of the more tempered praise Trump has repeatedly bestowed on the Russian leader '-- a sign that the two view one another with a cautious admiration.
But Trump's compliments for Putin often serve a political purpose: highlighting President Obama's alleged weakness. Trump has warned that Putin "has eaten Obama's lunch," is "toying with Obama" and was "really embarrassing the U.S."
Still, the constant praise for Putin suggests he may be more than just a political tool to Trump.
Trump: "In terms of leadership, he's getting an 'A'"Just two months ago, Trump said that if he became president, his relationship with Putin would be so strong that the Russian leader would gladly extradite NSA leaker Edward Snowden.
"If I were president, Putin would give him over," Trump told CNN's Anderson Cooper. "I would get along with Putin. I've dealt with Russia."
That comment came just weeks after Trump praised Putin by way of criticizing Obama.
"I will tell you that I think in terms of leadership, he's getting an 'A,'" Trump said of Putin, "and our president is not doing so well."
That interview, with Fox's Bill O'Reilly, came one day after Putin and Obama held their first formal meeting in more than two years
"They did not look good together," Trump said.
[Why Donald Trump is praising Vladimir Putin]
"He frankly wants to fight ISIS and I think that's a wonderful thing," Trump later added, suggesting that leaving Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in power may be better than the alternative. He also expressed little concern at the notion, expressed by O'Reilly, that Putin could "run Syria" after intervening in the Syrian conflict.
"All right, okay. Fine. I mean, you know, we can be in Syria," Trump said. "Do you want to run Syria? Do you want to own Syria? I want to rebuild our country, Bill."
Trump: "Putin probably comes in to save the day, if Germany doesn't."In late September, Trump complained that Putin received better treatment in a "60 Minutes" interview than he had. In explaining why, Trump offered a backhanded compliment:
"Putin is a nicer person than I am," he said.
Over the summer, Trump suggested that he and Putin would develop a strong relationship as world leaders.
"I think I'd get along very well with Vladimir Putin. I just think so. People say, 'What do you mean?' I think I'd get along well with him," he told reporters in Scotland in late July. "Obama and him '-- he hates Obama, Obama hates him. We have unbelievably bad relationships."
Earlier that month, Trump said he saw little reason to worry about the Greek debt crisis and its impact on the European economy, telling Fox Business Network's Maria Bartiromo that if Germany wouldn't help, Putin would.
"Frankly, Putin probably comes in to save the day, if Germany doesn't," Trump said. "So I think that Greece is going to be in better shape than people think."
Related stories:
Putin: Donald Trump is 'a very flamboyant man, very talented'
Trump: Putin is 'nicer' than I am
Trump: Putin's respect is 'what we want'
Niraj Chokshi is a general assignment reporter for The Washington Post.
Migrants
Angela Merkel: Refugee Challenge 'Is My Damn Duty' '-- but Check Out What the German Public Thinks | TheBlaze.com
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 11:00
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a Sunday night interview with German television that even though she at times despairs over the refugee crisis, she believes it is her ''damn duty to do everything'' she can to help Europe find a collective solution to the challenge.
''Sometimes, I also despair. Some things go too slow. There are many conflicting interests in Europe,'' Merkel told state broadcaster ARD, quotes of which were published in the Guardian and Agence France-Presse.
''It's my damn duty and obligation to do everything possible for Europe to find a united path,'' the German leader said.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel gestures as she poses before a TV interview on the immigrant crisis with public broadcaster ARD on Sunday in Berlin. Merkel said during the interview that the EU cannot allow Greece, a country bailed out from its huge debt crisis, to plunge into ''chaos'' by shutting European borders to refugees. (Rainer Jensen/AFP/Getty Images)
Despite Merkel's commitment to finding a pan-European solution to the influx of asylum seekers, a new public opinion survey showed how at odds her approach is to the preferences of Germans, nine out of 10 of whom favor a cap on migrants.
Asked how many asylum seekers Germany should accept per year, 89 percent of respondents said the number should either be limited or that no migrants should be accepted, the English-language website The Local reported Monday.
While 1.1 million asylum seekers arrived in Germany just last year, the Infratest poll showed that only 11 percent of Germans thought an unlimited number of migrants should be accepted in their country moving forward.
Twenty-one percent of Germans said no more asylum seekers should be accepted at all, the poll showed.
Merkel expressed concern that Greece could plunge into ''chaos'' following a move from neighboring countries to close their borders to migrants.
''Do you seriously believe that all the euro states that last year fought all the way to keep Greece in the eurozone '-- and we were the strictest '-- can one year later allow Greece to, in a way, plunge into chaos?'' Merkel said in a TV interview, referring to the bailout of Greece following its debt crisis.
She lambasted countries that have tightened border controls or capped asylum applications '-- Austria and the Balkan countries Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia '-- putting more pressure on Greece, the favored entry point to Europe by migrants arriving by boat.
''The problem is that they acted independently and unilaterally, but it's not good if a country is not involved,'' Merkel said.
DVLA staff told not to criticise the EU on Twitter or Facebook ahead of the referendum - Wales Online
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 15:37
Staff at the Swansea-based DVLA have been told not to express anti-EU views on Facebook or Twitter in the run up to the referendum.
Staff have been emailed and given a string of instructions about doing anything that ''contradicts the government's official position on EU membership''.
They are told that this guidance also applies to ''the use of social media by civil servants in both their official and personal capacity and involvement in a personal capacity in campaigning connected to the referendum".
Ukip leader Nigel Farage said the message to staff was ''sort of thing you'd expect from the Politburo during the Cold War''.
The leaked email, which is sent to officials in junior management positions and above, says civil servants must be ''especially careful'' in the coming weeks and months.
It comes after Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood banned civil servants from helping ministers who are campaigning to leave the EU.
Nigel Farage: 'A culture of fear' Nigel Farage, seen here in Llandudno at the weekend, says it is 'abhorrent' that 'ministries are being controlled in this fashion'Ukip's Mr Farage described the restrictions as ''draconian'', saying: ''I mean, this is utterly astonishing. It is abhorrent anyway that ministries are being controlled in this fashion, it's the sort of thing you'd expect from the Politburo during the Cold War.
''But to disseminate these sorts of veiled threats... is extraordinary. It's created a culture of fear where people are now afraid of what they can say and do privately and on their personal social media.
''This level of censorship and manipulation, wherever it is happening in the world, should and does receive very vocal criticism from leaders of democratic countries internationally. And yet here, in 21st century Britain, we have a Government that is currently acting more like a totalitarian regime.''
The leaked email tells staff' ''Departments should continue to support ministers in the normal way in developing and implementing government policy '' however, it would not be appropriate or permissible for the civil service to support ministers in any activity that contradicts the government's official position on EU membership, such as by providing briefing or speech material.''
' ''Civil servants should not speak in their official capacity at external events about the referendum or work with or for campaign groups on either side of the debate, and they shouldn't include campaign branding and avoid any direct reference to campaign groups when issuing any government statements or material, including written answers to parliamentary questions.''
' ''Civil servants must be careful to explain the government's position in a factual way.''
Nathan Gill: 'Considering a third of employment in Wales is in the public sector, I'm horrified' Nathan Gill: 'I have been told that people at DVLA are now terrified about what they can say and do in their private lives''Nathan Gill, the party's Welsh leader, said no organisation had the right to ''snoop on their personal interactions''.
Ukip Wales leader Mr Gill said he was ''deeply concerned'', saying: ''I have been told that people at DVLA are now terrified about what they can say and do in their private lives and in the office, for fear of losing their jobs.
"No organisation, Government-run or otherwise, has any right to close down the free speech of their employees, gag their staff or snoop on their personal interactions, especially during what absolutely must be a transparent and democratic process such as the EU referendum, which is of such significant national importance.
''Considering a third of employment in Wales is in the public sector, I'm horrified by this, absolutely horrified, and it is vital that people know this sort of censorship is now happening up and down the country.
"It has no place in any democracy and I am deeply concerned that this must be exposed and must stop at once.
''Every man and woman in Wales has a civic right to vote and campaign personally in whatever way they believe correct during this referendum. What sort of a country do we now live in?
''The general public need to know this is going on.''
A DVLA spokesman said the email pointed people towards guidance for civil servants that was already publicly available on the UK Government website.
Germany takes on Facebook in first-ever competition probe | Reuters
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 15:40
A man walks in front of the Facebook logo at the new Facebook Innovation Hub during a preview media tour in Berlin, Germany, February 24, 2016.
Reuters/Fabrizio Bensch
FRANKFURT Germany's cartel office is investigating Facebook (FB.O) for suspected abuse of market power over breaches of data protection laws in the first formal probe of the social network for violating competition rules.
The watchdog said it suspected that Facebook's terms of service with its users regarding how the company makes use of their data may abuse the company's possibly dominant position in the social networking market.
Facebook, the world's biggest social network with 1.6 billion monthly users, earns revenues from advertising based on data it gathers about its users' social connections, opinions and activities in their postings.
"For advertising-financed internet services such as Facebook, user data are hugely important," Federal Cartel Office President Andreas Mundt said.
The cartel office said it had considerable doubts about whether Facebook users had been properly informed about how their data were used, which it said could violate stringent German data protection laws.
"There is an initial suspicion that Facebook's conditions of use are in violation of data protection provisions," the regulator said in a statement announcing the probe.
Facebook is nearly the twice the size of the world's second largest social network, Tencent's (0700.HK) QQ of China. Nearly 84 percent of Facebook's members are outside the United States and Canada.
The company has faced strong criticism from politicians and regulators in Germany, where data protection is strongly regulated, over its privacy practices.
Co-founder and Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg visited Berlin on a charm offensive last week.
A Facebook spokeswoman said on Wednesday: "We are confident that we comply with the law and we look forward to working with the Federal Cartel Office to answer their questions."
The regulator said it was investigating whether Facebook abused its market power by failing to adequately inform its users of the scope and nature of data collection on their Internet surfing habits.
Facebook owns four of the top eight social network services globally including its core profile service, two separate instant messaging services, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, and its picture-sharing service Instagram.
"This is certainly an unusual case," Mark Watts, head of data protection at London-based law firm Bristows, said of how the investigation marks the first time that data protection issues have become a significant factor in a competition case.
TAKING EUROPEAN LEAD
The German cartel office is taking the lead in the case while advising the European Commission and competition regulators in other EU states.
The cartel office said it was working closely on its probe with the European Commission, competition authorities in other European Union states, data protection authorities in Germany and consumer rights groups.
European Commission spokesman Ricardo Cardoso said the EU executive shared the view of the German cartel office that the mere infringement of data protection rules by a dominant company did not automatically amount to a competition violation.
"However, it cannot be excluded that a behavior that violates data protection rules could also be relevant when investigating a possible violation of EU competition rules," he added, while declining specific comment on the new case.
Speaking in Germany in January, top EU antitrust enforcer Margrethe Vestager said her agency was taking a harder look at whether the collection of vast amounts of consumer data by big Internet companies violates competition rules.
A spokesman for the Belgian competition authority declined to comment on whether it was cooperating with the German probe. The French and Irish competition regulators were not immediately available to comment.
The EU has accused Facebook rival Google, a unit of Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O), of favoring its own shopping services in search results at the expense of rivals, and is weighing possible sanctions against the world's most popular search engine.
However, the commission previously considered and rejected big data issues when it approved Google's acquisition of online advertising firm DoubleClick in 2008 and Facebook's purchase of WhatsApp in 2014.
(Additional reporting by Georgina Prodhan and Harro ten Wolde in Frankfurt, Conor Humphries in Dublin, Phil Blenkinsop and Foo Yun Chee in Brussels, Mathieu Rosemain in Paris and Paul Sandle in London; editing by Louise Heavens and Giles Elgood)
Germany and Turkey, Drowning the EU in a Refugee Flood - Veterans Today
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 21:57
Written and produced by SF Team: Lorenzo Nacci, Daniel Deiss
Visa-free regime for Turkish nationals in the Schengen zone could open a ''gateway'' for a new refugee influx to Germany, Vice-President of the Bundestag Johannes Singhammer told Passauer Neue Presse on Tuesday. Citing Foreign Ministry figures, he said that more than 200,000 Schengen visas are being issued annually by German consulates and visa centers in Turkey.
The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) warned Europe on Tuesday of an imminent humanitarian crisis as the number of refugees in Greece in need immediate help reached 24,000. According to the UNHCR, as of Tuesday, almost 132,000 people had crossed the Mediterranean Sea to reach Europe during January and February, of whom over 122,000 had arrived in Greece.
Around 150 migrants, some armed with iron bars, have attempted to block or climb lorries traveling towards the Eurotunnel, as clashes with police continued into the night in chaotic scenes surrounding the Calais refugee 'Jungle' camp in France on March 1.
Saudi Arabia has acknowledged that the US-led anti-ISIS coalition has held a ''political'' discussion about a potential ground troop deployment in Syria. An aide to Saudi Arabia's defense minister, Brigadier General Ahmed Asseri, confirmed the coalition debated placing ground troops on the ground in Syria during a ministerial meeting in Brussels last month.
Related Posts:The views expressed herein are the views of the author exclusively and not necessarily the views of VT, VT authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners, technicians, or the Veterans Today Network and its assigns. LEGAL NOTICE - COMMENT POLICYPosted by South Front on March 2, 2016, With 172 Reads Filed under World. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.
UNHCR warns Europe is on the cusp of a largely self-induced humanitarian crisis | euronews, world news
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 07:12
The United Nations High Commission for Refugees has warned Europe is on the cusp of a largely self-induced humanitarian crisis.
Much of the evidence it says is in what is happening in refugee camps near the village of Eidomeni which lies on the Greek border with the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Around 8,500 of the 24,000 migrants needing accommodation in Greece are here.
Crowded conditions had forced 1500 to spend the night in the open at the start of this week and have led to shortages of food, shelter, water and sanitation. It means a long wait for the basics.
''We have to stay for the water in line for maybe for four hours, five hours, you don't know there is 7,000 people and there is just one place giving water and food,'' explained one migrant,Ibrahim from Syria
Data from the UN agency predicts that by the end of March between 50,000 and 70,000 migrants will be in Greece. On the border Greek authorities have responded with the military setting up two camps while a third is under construction.
Macedonia is the first country on what is known as the Balkan route used by migrants arriving in Greece on a journey they hope will take them to central and northern Europe.
On Sunday Macedonia let few cross the border, until at midnight 300 Iraqis and Syrians were allowed through. As others were denied the chance to cross, at midday tension sparked into violence as hundreds, including women and children attempted to break through before being pushed back in the face of guards firing tear gas.
The UNHCR claims governments are failing to work together despite having already reached agreements in several areas. Inconsistent practices, it says, are causing unnecessary suffering and risk being at variance with EU and international law standards.
The border post which separates Macedonia and Greece will open once or twice a day or perhaps not at all. Between 50 to 300 are allowed to cross at any one time, rarely more than that.
This has led the UNHCR to voice concerns that the situation could escalate into a humanitarian crisis similar to that on the Greek islands last autumn.
Refugee crisis - What to expect next from Merkel & Co. | Germany | DW.COM | 02.03.2016
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 15:21
On Wednesday, the heads of the CDU and CSU met for two hours at the chancellery. No statements followed.
It's no secret that conservatives in the union disagree about how to handle the refugee crisis. Angela Merkel is holding firm to her proposal of a European solution.
The leader of the CSU, Horst Seehofer, doesn't believe it will work, and is demanding a national solution, including an upper limit on the number of refugees Germany will accept.
The number of refugees on the Austrian-German border is currently going down. A spokesman for the interior ministry in Berlin said the numbers are now in the "middle three-figure area." But the CSU attributes this more to the bad weather than any success of Merkel's policy.
On Friday, Seehofer will meet with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, one of Merkel's greatest adversaries at the EU level. There was more than enough for the party leaders to discuss during their meeting in the chancellery. And in the end - differences aside - their meeting served to provide support for Merkel in the face of the coming challenges.
Paris: Strengthening the Franco-German axis
Afghan refugee family in Greece
On Friday, Merkel will travel to Paris to consult with President Francois Hollande. Government spokesman Steffen Seibert said Merkel wants to coordinate closely ahead of the EU summit next week.
There are three major areas she is focusing on: Protecting the EU's external borders, fighting the cause of the mass migration movement in the countries of origin and reducing the number of illegal immigrants.
The current bottleneck of refugees in Greece and the Western Balkans will also be an important factor at the meeting. The pictures from these areas show the necessity of a common European response to the crisis. Simply closing internal borders out of pure national interest only adds to the burden of other countries, such as Greece.
Brussels: Summit with Turkey
On Monday, Brussels is hosting the special EU-Turkey summit that had to be postponed after Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu had to suddenly cancel a meeting set for February 18 and 19 in the wake of a terror attack.
The EU-Turkey action plan agreed at the end of November will be evaluated at the summit. The plan aims to "clearly and permanently decrease" the number of immigrants entering the EU illegally via Turkey.
The Greek Diavata refugee camp near Thessaloniki
In addition, the plan includes measures to fight human trafficking networks. EU states pledged billions in funds to aid Turkey. The date of the summit also coincides with an ultimatum set by German Interior Minister Thomas de Maizi¨re. On February 21, the minister said that if the plan didn't work, other measures would have to be taken to protect the Schengen zone borders. In recent weeks, there has been repeated discussion of shifting the outer border in the Balkan region, so that Greece would de facto no longer be part of the Schengen area.
Brussels: Setting the course
A further EU summit is slated for March 17 and 18. The topic up for debate: A common European refugee policy and agreement on a course of action. In addition, the normal operating conditions of the Schengen area are to be reinstated.
But at this point it is far from clear whether Merkel and the EU Commission will be able to reach the desired consensus. By this time, Merkel has said that she will be able to draw some conclusions about the effectiveness of current efforts to curb and better control the flow of refugees.
The Sunday prior to this summit - March 13 - will see a sort of "Super Sunday" in Germany with elections in three states. The conservative CDU/CSU is already preparing for massive losses due to voter disgust with the way the refugee crisis is being managed.
Onenigheid VVD en PvdA over plan 'luchtbrug' Turkije - AD.nl
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 15:20
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Agenda 2030
Bin Laden called for Americans to rise up over climate change | Reuters
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 21:52
Tue Mar 1, 2016 | 3:22 PM EST
By Jonathan Landay
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Osama bin Laden wrote a letter calling on the American people to help President Barack Obama fight "catastrophic" climate change and "save humanity", in the latest evidence of his worries about environmental issues, newly released documents show
The letter was among materials that were seized in the May 2, 2011, U.S. raid on bin Laden's hideout in Pakistan that killed the al Qaeda chief and which were released on Tuesday by the Obama administration.
The undated, unsigned letter "to the American people," which U.S. intelligence officials attributed to bin Laden, appeared to have been written shortly after Obama began his first term in 2009, based on the letter's references to events.
Bin Laden's preoccupation with climate change also emerged as a theme in the first tranche of documents from the raid that was declassified in May 2015, as well as in an audio recording released via the al Jazeera network in January 2010.
In the rambling letter made public Tuesday, bin Laden blamed the 2007-8 U.S. financial crisis on corporate control of capital and corporate lobbyists, and the U.S.-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
He called on Americans to launch "a great revolution for freedom" to liberate the U.S. president from those influences.
That would enable Obama to make "a rational decision to save humanity from the harmful gases that threaten its destiny," bin Laden continued.
In a separate letter, bin Laden urged a close aide to launch a media campaign for the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that included a call for cutting greenhouse gas emissions.
Bin Laden contended that the world would be better off fighting climate change than waging what he claimed was a war against Islam.
"...the world should put its efforts into attempting to reduce the release of gases," said the undated, unsigned letter to someone identified as Shaykh Mahmud that U.S. intelligence officials said they believed was written by bin Laden.
"This is a struggle between two of the largest cultures on Earth, and it is in the shadow of catastrophic climate conditions."
(Reporting by Jonathan Landay; editing by Stuart Grudgings)
Can Miami Beach survive climate change? - CNN.com
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 05:14
The seas are rising, and people are starting to respond. I recently wrote about one resident of the South Florida city who is so concerned about climate change and rising seas that he's packing up his home in the center of the island and planning to move to higher ground.
Pull up a map of projected sea level rise, and it's easy to see why. At even 2 to 4 feet of sea level rise, the island will be considerably flooded. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says 6 feet of sea level increase is possible by century's end. These are long-term trends -- measured in decades and generations -- but they're certainly frightening.
Others in Miami Beach, however, are vowing to stay and fight. The city is regarded by many as a proactive leader in efforts to hold back the threats of rising tides.
How are they doing it? And what are the limits of engineering fixes to climate change and rising seas? To learn about that, I called up Susanne Torriente, assistant city manager and "chief resiliency officer" for Miami Beach, a 90,000-person island municipality off the coast of Miami proper.
The following is a transcript of our conversation, edited for length and clarity:
CNN: Do you think Miami Beach can survive climate change in the long term?
Torriente: I don't know what the long term is, but I know Miami Beach is adapting to climate change. We're starting already. ... We're starting to adapt today. And the approach is really incremental adaptation. What can we do in our one-year budget, in our five-year capital plan -- and maybe in some of our 20-year master plans -- to start to really start to deliver government services in a different way? We have more data nowadays. We have sea level rise projections.
CNN: What are you doing today to try to fight sea-level rise?
What they've done here in Miami Beach is an aggressive stormwater program that includes installing pumps. ... We're installing these pumps that actually take the water and push it out. We're elevating roads. We're working on our seawalls. We have 63 miles of seawalls. Only three (miles) are actually public. But we're looking at elevating those and restoring those.
CNN: I'm wondering how that has worked so far. From what I've read, Miami Beach has seen a lot of flooding in recent years associated with higher tides.
Last fall, the pumps were working and those streets were dry. Versus two years ago, you see those pictures of some of our roads that were really flooded rather high.
This year, where the pumps were installed, they worked.
CNN: When I was driving around on Miami Beach, I came to these intersections where you feel like you're almost going up a ramp into a parking garage or something. The road level just goes up dramatically. But seeing that I wondered: Does the floodwater just collect below that? If you're just raising the road level, how is that helpful?
Well, you're elevating. So the water's not getting up to you, essentially. That's on the public side. And we're also looking at our land use code. Local governments have that kind of building and zoning and planning authority. We are looking at private development -- what should be those elevations as well.
CNN: I've read that for other low-lying cities like New Orleans there's more potential to put up levees and seawalls to hold the ocean back. But because Miami sits on limestone, which is porous, it's hard to do that. The water would just go under them.
I'm not an engineer, but I've heard the engineers talk about, well, are there ways to combat that? Are there ways to seal the limestone? I just heard my city engineer talking about that earlier this week. Yes, that is a challenge for us. The water does come up through this porous limestone that we do sit on. It's not as easy as just building a wall. That's why we have to work in other ways, like pumping the water out or elevating the roads.
CNN: What would you want to say to someone in Miami Beach -- or another coastal community -- who's worried about sea level rise?
The important message is: Climate change is here and sea level is rising. But our eyes are wide open to the issue. We're actively planning and we're actively doing. We're actively designing and constructing these kinds of incremental adaptation options that continue to reduce our risk. The work we're doing today is safeguarding us for the future. As time passes and we have more information and more data we can continue to build upon what we're doing today.
CNN: I met a Miami Beach resident who told me he is packing up and planning to move out of Miami Beach because he's worried about the long term viability of his home, and, more immediately, he's worried about his investment given the risks of climate change. I'm wondering what you think of that decision. Do you think it's alarmist? Is it prudent?
I think it's a personal decision. People have their own circumstances in life, and you make those personal decisions. But I do think it's important for the residents here to know -- and they do know -- that this city commission and the residents today here in the city are willing to invest. They raised their stormwater rates so we could issue the bonds to pay for these investments. And the investments we're making are in fact reducing those risks.
If were a coastal community that was getting flooded and we had our eyes closed and were doing nothing, then there should be some worry. But we're a coastal community heavily involved in designing and constructing -- and working to reduce that risk.
CNN: I got some comments with people saying this isn't climate change, this isn't happening. This is just the coast of Florida and of course it floods sometimes. How certain are you that what you see happening now is climate change?
We're a local government. We have to be responsible. These things are happening. And so that argument really doesn't happen in South Florida anymore. It's about actually doing something about.
CNN: Marco Rubio is from South Florida and is a Republican presidential contender. And I would say he's injecting a lot of false doubt into the climate conversation. I'm wondering what you think about that -- or about the election as a whole?
As a local government appointed official, I'm not going to get into too much of the politics of it. But the science is there. These things are happening. And whoever gets in office needs to understand that these are issues that are facing these communities. We need the help and the coordination from the state and the feds. Right now it's really the local governments that are stepping up to this. ... It's not a partisan issue down here.
CNN: Is this a pretty expensive problem to deal with?
Yeah.
CNN: I was told you all have pledged something like $400 million to fight this.
The estimate is somewhere around $400 million, and the numbers change as you're out in the field and constructing these things. And it's essentially a three- to five-year program to install these pumps in these low-lying areas of the city. South Florida is coastal and low-lying. I kind of say we're flat and flatter. You look at the areas that are most vulnerable and start there.
CNN: I think some people could see that number -- $400 million -- and think, 'Oh my gosh, that's a lot of money that's being used to fight something that's unwinnable.'
But you spent time here, right? This is a vibrant, beautiful coastal community. People still want to come live, work and play here. So, I'm not ready to give up. (Laughs).
There are a lot of people who are not ready to give up. These investments continue to reduce our risk and make us less vulnerable and buy time. Yeah, I think the key message is we're not willing to give up. That would be disappointing for a lot of folks. Our eyes are wide open, and we're actively involved in making this community beautiful and vibrant and resilient. You know, 100 years from now, 200 years from now, it'll be different.
I joke with my staff that we're creating 'Tomorrowland.' It will look different. Maybe other generations will have to adapt more and learn to live with the water even more. The design of the city will be different. But we're not giving up.
CNN: What do you think that 'Tomorrowland' might look like?
Maybe some roads are allowed to flood or some areas are allowed to flood, and we create investments that are built to hold water sometimes and be dry in others.
There's a whole kind of opportunity to create a different city. We've had conversation with folks from The Netherlands. That's really their phrase: "Learning to live with the water." Our behavior may be different, the way we conduct our lives, but we've been doing that for years. Generations adapt.
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F-Russia
VIDEO-MH17 downing: Dutch lawmakers raise questions on probe, slam secrecy - YouTube
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 20:57
Shut Up Slave!
A 12-year-old girl is facing criminal charges for using certain emoji. She's not alone. - The Washington Post
Sun, 28 Feb 2016 23:54
The smiley face, heart, praying hands and other ''emoji'' have become the way millions of Internet users playfully punctuate their texts, posts and messages, but for one middle schooler the icons brought the police to her door.
The 12-year-old from Fairfax, Va., has been charged with threatening her school after police said she posted a message on Instagram in December laden with gun, bomb and knife emojis. It read in part:
Killing ðŸ--
''meet me in the library Tuesday''
ðŸ-- ðŸ--ª ðŸ'£
As emoji and their relative the emoticon have rocketed from web slang to the unofficial language of the Internet age, the case is one of a growing number where authorities contend the cartoonish symbols have been used to stalk, harass, threaten or defame people. And that has left the police and courts wrestling with how to treat a newly popular idiom many still dimly grasp.
A grand jury in New York City recently had to decide whether 👮 ðŸ-- represented a true threat to police officers. A Michigan judge was asked to interpret the meaning of a face with a tongue sticking out: :P. Emoji even took a turn in the Supreme Court last year in a high-profile case over what constitutes a threat.
Such thorny questions are likely to only increase with the recent announcement that Facebook was rolling out a series of five face emoji users can select to react to posts in lieu of its ubiquitous ''like'' button.
''Emoji are new enough that people are finding their footing,'' said Tyler Schnoebelen, a linguist and founder of a company called Idibon. ''Almost all of these cases have emerged in the past couple years. They are all going into fresh legal territory.''
Emoji are icons of faces, hand gestures, fruits, animals and other items that can be embedded in text. They are often used to indicate the tone of a message, add emphasis or are shorthand for things or ideas.
Emoji shot to popularity in the United States after Apple included an emoji keyboard on its iPhone in 2011. The advertising company Swyft Media estimates 6 billion emojis and other pictograms are sent each day and a report by an Internet startup Emogi found 92 percent of the online population uses the icons.
That rise has led to challenges.
Police are trying to judge just how serious to take threatening messages using emoji, which are most often deployed in a light-hearted manner. Attorneys have argued over whether emoji should be presented to juries as evidence. Experts say the biggest problem is simply determining in court what a defendant actually intended by sending a particular emoji.
Is a winkie face emoji ironic, flirtatious or menacing? What exactly do the popular dancing girl or grinning pile of poo emoji actually mean '-- if anything '-- when appended to a message? Emoji have no set definition and their use can vary from user-to-user and context-to-context.
''You understand words in a particular way,'' said Dalia Topelson Ritvo, assistant director of the Cyber Law clinic at Harvard Law School. ''It's challenging with symbols and images to unravel that.''
Ritvo said that some of these issues will likely play out in the Fairfax case.
It began on Dec. 14, when a resource officer at Sidney Lanier Middle School in Fairfax was made aware of the threatening Instagram post and others, according to a search warrant.
The officer began interviewing students and sent an emergency request to obtain the IP address of the user associated with the Instagram account. The investigation led to the 12-year-old, who was also a student at Lanier. The Post generally does not name juveniles accused of crimes.
The search warrant states the girl admitted to authorities she posted the messages on Instagram and did it under the name of another student. She was charged with threatening the school and computer harassment. A spokesman for Fairfax County schools said the alleged threat was deemed ''not credible.''
The girl was scheduled to make her first appearance in juvenile court on the charges at the end of the month, but it is unclear whether the case has been resolved since the hearings are not open to the public.
Authorities have not released a motive in the case, but the girl's mother said the girl posted the messages in response to being bullied at school.
''She's a good kid. She's never been in trouble before,'' the woman said. ''I don't think it's a case where there should have been charges.''
Ritvo said the girl's message sounds threatening, but prosecutors and the judge will have to sort out whether the bomb, gun and knife emoji indicated a desire to threaten the school, simply anger, or something else entirely.
Other cases have run aground on similar distinctions.
Last year, a New York City teen was charged with making a terrorist threat after posting a message on Facebook that read ''N'--a run up on me, he gunna get blown down'' followed by a police officer emoji and three gun emoji pointed at the icon's head.
A grand jury later declined to indict Osiris Aristy, 17, on the charge and his attorney said the case was one of overreach by law enforcement. Fred Pratt said he's seen other clients use emoji the same way.
''I think something is definitely lost in translation,'' Pratt said of the police interpreting the teens' emoji use. ''These kids are not threatening cops, they are just trying to say, 'I'm tough.' It's posturing.''
Other cases have brought up an even more basic question: Should emoji even be considered as evidence?
A strange scene played out at the federal trial of the man accused of running the online drug market, Silk Road, last year in New York City. As a prosecutor began reading an Internet post to the court, Ross W. Ulbricht's attorney raised an objection.
Ulbricht's attorney said the prosecutor had omitted mention of a smiley face emoji that punctuated and imparted meaning to a sentence. Afterward, the judge instructed the jury to take note of the emoji in the posts, saying they were part of the evidence.
Even so, there is still no set protocol in the courts for how '-- or even if ''they should be presented to juries. It's an issue that the legal system will likely be sorting through in the years to come.
In some cases, judges have been asked to interpret the meaning of emoji and emoticons (relatives of emoji made with traditional keyboard characters), including the Supreme Court. Anthony Elonis, a Pennsylvania man, argued that his conviction for threatening his estranged wife via Facebook should be overturned in a case decided last year.
Elonis, in the persona of a rapper, posted graphically violent lyrics about killing his wife on Facebook. His wife said she interpreted the posts as threats, but Elonis argued they were fictitious.
He indicated in some posts the lyrics were art or therapy. In others, he followed posts with the emoticon (a relative of the emoji) of a face with its tongue sticking out: :P. Elonis argued the pictograms proved the posts were jests.
The justices ultimately sided with Elonis and tossed out his conviction, in a ruling that made it harder to prosecute people for threats made on the Internet. Emoji are likely to get close scrutiny when they pop up in similar cases going forward.
Bradley S. Shear, a Maryland attorney who specializes in Internet issues, said the issues surrounding emoji and the legal system will only proliferate.
''These cases are only increasing,'' Shear said. ''The more people are using their cell phones and posting on the Internet, the more emoji will creep up as evidence in cases.''
And that could leave judges wanting to type: ¯\_(ãƒ)_/¯
Read more:
Emoji is crowned Oxford Dictionaries' Word of the Year
The secret double meanings of emoji
Can emoji help kids make better food choices?
Anti-Gay Stickers At High School In Indio Touch Off Debate: Hate Speech Or Free Speech?
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 05:13
Anti-Gay Stickers At High School In Indio Touch Off Debate: Hate Speech Or Free Speech?
INDIO (CBSLA.com) '-- Students displaying anti-LGBT stickers at a high school in Indio have touched off a debate: is that free speech or hate speech?
The stickers show a rainbow '-- the symbol of the gay community '-- with a line crossing through it. Officials said the stickers have increasingly shown up over the past two weeks on some students' school ID badges at Shadow Hills High School, as well as on social media websites.
The increasing number of the stickers caused an outcry at the school among students and faculty. Many called it hate speech. Shadow Hills senior and vice president of the Gay Straight Alliance Michelle Bachman said on Twitter that the stickers were ''definitely hate speech, but legally, we can't do anything until these students start to physically harass us, which I believe is an injustice.''
School district administrators said the students have the right to display the stickers, just as pro-LGBT students would.
In an email sent to staff Wednesday, Desert Sands Unified School District administrators wrote, ''After consulting with district level personnel and our legal counsel, it was determined that these students do have the protected right to freedom of speech, just as students portraying rainbows in support of the LGBT would.''
The school district said that is the stickers led to actual verbal or physical harassment, that would be going too far.
''Every person can have an opinion, but if there's harassment or bullying then it does cross the line,'' DSUSD Assistant Superintendent Laura Fisher told KESQ.
''If at any point students are interrupting class time to express their beliefs, they are to be sent to the discipline office with a referral for disruption,'' the school district's Wednesday email said. ''We all have a right to freedom of speech, but students also have a right to be educated without fear. This has always been our policy, and we will continue to enforce it.''
((C)2016 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)
Big Pharma
Association Between Zolpidem and Suicide: A Nationwide Population-Based Case-Control Study
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 23:32
To view the full text, please login as a subscribed user or purchase a subscription. Click here to view the full text on ScienceDirect.
FiguresFigure
Flowchart for selection of study population.
AbstractObjectiveTo evaluate the association between zolpidem and the risk of suicide.
Patients and MethodsIn this nationwide case-control study, the case group comprised 2199 people who committed suicide or were hospitalized due to suicide attempt between January 1, 2002, and December 31, 2011. To create a control group, we randomly selected 10 people matched to each case according to age, sex, urbanization, and occupation. We measured the risk of suicide/suicide attempt in association with zolpidem exposure by using adjusted odds ratios (ORs) and assessed the dose-response effect of zolpidem.
ResultsAfter adjustment for potential confounders such as the comorbidities of schizophrenia, major depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, insomnia, substance use, and other mental disorders, the Charlson comorbidity index, and use of benzodiazepine or antidepressants, zolpidem exposure was found to be significantly associated with the risk of suicide/suicide attempt with an OR of 2.08 (95% CIs, 1.83-2.36). The risk increased with the level of zolpidem use. The ORs (95% CIs) for cumulative defined daily doses of less than 90, 90 to 179, and 180 mg or more were 1.90 (1.65-2.18), 2.07 (1.59-2.67), and 2.81 (2.33-3.38), respectively (for trend, P
Sad News
New names take effect at iconic Yosemite attractions | Local News - Home
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 00:05
Published On: Mar 01 2016 07:16:40 AM PST Updated On: Mar 01 2016 09:06:01 AM PST
YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, Calif. -Yosemite National Park is set to start showing the new names for some of park's most iconic attractions after no settlement was reached to a bitter legal dispute.
As of Tuesday, the historic Ahwahnee Hotel will become the Majestic Yosemite Hotel and Curry Village campground will be named Half Dome Village. Badger Pass Ski Resort will now be Yosemite Ski and Snowboard Area.
The park service announced last year that it would change the names of Curry Village, the Ahwahnee Hotel, Badger Pass Ski Resort and many other attractions after failing to reach agreement with the company that says it owns the trademarks to those attractions.
The company, Delaware North, has served as the park's concessionaire since 1993, running numerous park operations until losing the contract to Aramark, which is scheduled to take over at midnight. Delaware North and the Park Service have been unable to agree on the value of the trademarks and the Buffalo, New York-based company filed a breach-of-contract lawsuit.
The dispute prompted the Park Service to announce the name changes. Starting at midnight, Park Service employees will begin placing temporary signs over road signs directing visitors to the attractions while Aramark will be responsible for changing the names of the attractions.
Park Service spokesman Scott Gediman said temporary signs are being used in the hope that a settlement will be reached with Delaware North.
An historic sign welcoming visitors to the park's Ahwahnee Hotel was stolen sometime Saturday night or Sunday morning, Gediman said.
"It's part of the park's historic fabric," Gediman said. "And we are taking this seriously."
The Ahwahnee Hotel is to be renamed the Majestic Yosemite Hotel.
Delaware North spokesman Glen White said Park Service officials turned down the company's offer to let the park continue using the trademark names until the legal dispute was resolved.
Gediman said the Park Service turned down the offer made Friday because that would "acknowledge they own the names."
Mark Bartholomew, a University at Buffalo law professor who teaches trademark law, says Delaware North may also want to preserve the value of the names at issue. The iconic names will lose value if they are no longer used, he said.
"I think all sides will ultimately come to an agreement after some more posturing," Bartholomew said.
Court filing show the Park Service valuing the trademarks at $3.5 million and Delaware North puts their worth at $51 million.
CYBER!
Pentagon Wants a Few Good Hackers
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 22:04
Defense Secretary Ashton Carter has approved a ''Hack the Pentagon'' pilot program that will offer ''bug bounties'' for more than a few hackers who can find holes in the military's cyber defenses.
In a statement Wednesday, Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook said the ''Hack the Pentagon'' initiative would be ''the first cyber bug bounty program in the history of the federal government.''
Cook and a senior Defense Department official, who spoke on background, said details had yet to be worked out on when exactly the pilot program would begin and how large the cash awards would be, but the program was expected to launch sometime in April.
''Companies do this all the time'' to test their systems, the senior official said, and the Pentagon was following suit. ''The thinking was that this was a way to bring in external experts'' in the form of a ''white hat hacker who could come in and help us,'' the official said.
The Pentagon is the target of daily cyber attacks and ''now the good guys can come in and actually help. The bad guys aren't waiting,'' the official said. Those offering to compete for the ''bug bounties'' will be vetted to determine whether they are white hats or black hats, the official said.
White the amount of the awards was still to be worked out, ''This is a far cheaper way for us to do security and penetration testing'' than actually hiring the hackers, the official said. However, ''traditionally bug bounties do involve financial compensation'' in some form, the official said.
Participants in the bug bounty will be required to register and submit to a background check prior to any involvement with the pilot program,'' Cook said. ''Once vetted, these hackers will participate in a controlled, limited duration program that will allow them to identify vulnerabilities on a predetermined department system.''
Carter said in a statement that ''I am always challenging our people to think outside the five-sided box that is the Pentagon. Inviting responsible hackers to test our cybersecurity certainly meets that test. I am confident this innovative initiative will strengthen our digital defenses and ultimately enhance our national security.''
The hacking initiative was the brainchild of the Pentagon's Defense Digital Service. Carter inaugurated the service last November and brought in Silicon Valley executive Chris Lynch to run it with a small team of engineers and data experts in the effort to improve the Department's tech agility.
''Bringing in the best talent, technology and processes from the private sector not only helps us deliver comprehensive, more secure solutions to the DoD, but it also helps us better protect our country,'' Lynch said in a statement.
In a speech to the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco on Tuesday, Carter called Lynch a ''serial entrepreneur in the tech world'' who once worked for Microsoft.
''He's recruited coders from places like Google, Palantir, and Shopify for a tour of duty with DoD,'' Carter said. ''And he's done such a good job cutting through red tape, he even figured out how to get away with wearing a hoodie and jeans to the Pentagon every day.''
MIC
Former Google CEO Schmidt to head new Pentagon innovation board | Reuters
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 17:38
Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt addresses the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party economic council in Berlin, Germany June 9, 2015.
Reuters/Fabrizio Bensch
SAN FRANCISCO Eric Schmidt, the former chief executive officer of Google, has agreed to head a new Pentagon advisory board aimed at bringing Silicon Valley innovation and best practices to the U.S. military, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said on Wednesday.
Carter is due to discuss the new Defense Innovation Advisory Board with Schmidt during the annual RSA cybersecurity conference in San Francisco. Schmidt is now the executive chairman of Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O), the parent company of Google.
The new board is Carter's latest effort to kick-start innovation across the U.S. military by building bridges to the U.S. technology industry. The U.S. defense chief announced the board's creation on Wednesday during his third trip to Silicon Valley since taking office just over a year ago.
Carter and Schmidt will select up to l2 individuals to serve on the board, focusing on people who have led large private and public organizations, and excelled at identifying and adopting new technology concepts, the Pentagon said in a statement.
Modeled on the Defense Business Board, which provides advice on best business practices from the private sector, the new panel is intended to help the Pentagon become more innovative and adaptive in developing technology and more nimble.
Members will draw on their experience in Silicon Valley to advise on rapid prototyping, iterative product development, complex data analysis, the use of mobile and cloud applications and organizational information sharing.
"The secretary is always looking at ways to ... keep the department thinking fresh, bringing in new ideas, bringing in new voices, and he sees this as another opportunity to do that," said one senior defense official.
Details of how often the board will operate were still being worked out, the official said.
(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)
Apple Crack
Details emerge about planned digital security commission
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 19:32
Congress
Details emerge about planned digital security commissionBy Aisha ChowdhryFeb 29, 2016Rep. Michael McCaul (left) and Sen. Mark Warner (right) are calling for a digital security commission to examine encryption and other technology issues.
Details are emerging about a plan to create a congressionally mandated commission that would carve a path between the competing interests of law enforcement and technology companies in the digital security space.
A draft version of a bill from Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, and Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), a member of the Senate's Select Committee on Intelligence, calls for a 16-member panel consisting of experts in technology, cryptography, law enforcement, intelligence, privacy, global commerce and national security.
According to draft text obtained by FCW, the bill cites challenges created by advances in technology. The commission would bring together analysts, policymakers and law enforcement agents to find ways to mitigate "the dangers posed by the use of digital security and communications technology by terrorists and criminals [and] determine the implications for national security, public safety, data security, privacy, innovation and American competitiveness in the global marketplace."
Republican and Democratic leaders in Congress would be allowed to appoint eight individuals each to the commission. Republicans would select the chairperson, and Democrats would choose a vice chair. The commission would be in place for about a year and would be tasked with holding hearings and collecting information with the goal of producing a report that quantifies the value of encryption technology to the U.S. economy and the costs of introducing weaknesses or gaps in commercial encryption to serve law enforcement.
The commission would be modeled on the panel created by Congress to investigate the 2001 terrorist attacks. It would have the power to subpoena witnesses and the authority to obtain information from government agencies.
McCaul has previously said the encrypted "dark space" is the greatest challenge to law enforcement when it comes to stopping terrorists who are planning attacks inside the U.S.
"The whole point of the bill and the commission is to find a solution to a Paris-style attack where the attackers are using end-to-end encryption on apps to conduct a major terrorist operation," McCaul said at a recent Bipartisan Policy Center event. "We don't want to see that happen in the United States."
About the Author
Aisha Chowdhry is a staff writer covering Congress, the State Department, the Department of Veteran Affairs and the Department of Homeland Security.
Prior to joining FCW, Chowdhry covered foreign policy for CQ Roll Call. Her overseas work prior to that took her to Pakistan and Afghanistan. She has worked as a correspondent for Reuters based out of Islamabad. Chowdhry has also worked at the CBS affiliate in Washington as a multimedia journalist. She began her career as a freelance reporter for USA Today and covered stories from conflict zones. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Foreign Policy, and Voice of America, among others.
Chowdhry received her masters in broadcast journalism from American University in Washington, D.C.
Click here for previous articles by Chowdhry, or connect with her on Twitter: @aishach
What Do You Have to Hide ?- The Most Dangerous Question in America
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 19:38
Lets supposed that you agree, like I do, that 99pct of Americans are honest. We live our lives in a law abiding fashion. That there is nothing about our lives that is noteworthy or worth hiding from anyone other than maybe the people closest to us. No one wants everyone close to us to know everything about us. There has to be a little mystery, right ? A little salvation from embarrassment, right ? We have all our own secrets that we like to keep to ourselves. That is just human nature.
And as far as the rest of the world knowing those items, we are blessed by ''security via obscurity'' . No one gives a shit about us. They don't even know we exist. So no one asks us to share those secrets.
But what about our government ? As law abiding citizens who just go to work and live our every day lives, what could we possibly have to hide from our government ?
If as law abiding citizens 99pct of us have nothing to hide, why do we need all the protections from government that our constitution provides ?
Why not just let the police come in to our homes any time they would like? What do we have to hide ?
Why not let the government confiscate our phones or computers for a day or two ? What do we have to hide ?
Why not let the government monitor what we say or do ? What do we have to hide ?
Why do the innocent need attorney client privilege ? What do you have to hide ?
Fortunately our constitution at least tries to protect us from these types of government intrusions in to our lives. But what about when it comes from others ?
The question is extremely dangerous when coming from a public official or someone running for an office. It is being asked for no other reasons than to intimidate and to throw the subject's privacy out the door and open them up to public scrutiny.
I can't think of anything worse I want to hear coming from someone that holds a public office or is a current Presidential candidate than ''What do you have to hide '' ?
Unless of course its '' ''Look I did it, I have nothing to hide. Why don't you do the same thing ? What do you have to hide'' ? That is worse.
So when I hear candidates ask that another make public their tax returns, it scares me.
What's next ? What if one candidate decided to turn over all their emails ? We have seen Mrs Clinton's for a period. Why wouldn't a candidate who was careful about what they wrote in their emails publish all of theirs and offered the ''I did it, why won't you ? What do you have to hide ? '' to the other candidates ? Or here are my detailed medical records and every medication I take. ''What do you have to hide '' ? Or better yet, here is my search history and every website I have looked at over the last 4 years. ''What do you have to hide ''
What do you mean you deleted them ? What are you a '...'...'... (Fill in the blank any way you want )
It doesn't matter if producing tax returns has become a ''tradition''. It is a poor one that should not be part of the electoral process. The irony of course is that it is coming from candidates who have gone on continuous tirades about their love of and ability to interpret our Constitution.
When I hear Senator Cruz alleging Trump's possible ''mob connections'' being reveled by his tax returns, it scares me. A lot
It should scare you as well. When the people running for the most important office in the world start trying to intimidate other candidates with ''What do you have to hide'', the electoral process takes a significant hit.
Will future candidates be dissuaded from running because they don't want people to know how little they donated to charity ? Or will they be embarrassed by making too much or too little ? Or maybe it's something else that is disclosed that none of us expected and might be considered embarrassing , but is completely reasonable ?
And if the question comes from a candidate that ends up becoming President, how can we trust they won't use the same phrase again to intimidate one of us ? Or a future opposition candidate ?
So my suggestion to Donald Trump is to not be intimidated. Stand up for all of us and every future Presidential candidate and not provide your tax returns . You get audited every year like I do. If there is anything wrong it was the job of the IRS to find it, not the other candidates, the media or any of us.
And finally. I have no idea if my tax returns are more or less complicated than Donald Trump's. I truly don't know what is on my tax returns. The people that work for me know and understand that I don't like to pay taxes, but I'm not against it either. I truly believe that its patriotic to pay taxes. So I tell them to be very conservative in making choices. But what I do hate is how much of that money is wasted on bureaucratic overhead. But that is a blog post for another day.
For me, the days before my taxes are due go something like this: all my tax returns from what seems like all 50 states and all the federal forms are lined up around a long , long, long dining room table in my house. The signature pages are tabbed. Then I spend the better part of 45 minutes signing them till my hand cramps.
Do I read any of them ? Not a one. I have to trust the big tax accounting firm I hire to get it right.
I have absolutely nothing to hide, and if I ever run for President you will have to take my word for it and I hope every candidate for office says the exact same thing.
Read my words: My taxes are none of your business.
Most software already has a ''golden key'' backdoor: the system update | Ars Technica
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 04:34
Leif Ryge is an artist, hacker, and journalist living in Berlin. He used to tweet as @wiretapped but is on hiatus until Twitter stops suspending Tor users' accounts.
In 2014 when The Washington Post Editorial Board wrote "with all their wizardry, perhaps Apple and Google could invent a kind of secure golden key they would retain and use only when a court has approved a search warrant," the Internet ridiculed them. Many people painstakingly explained that even if there were somehow wide agreement about who would be the "right" people and governments to hold such an all-powerful capability, it would ultimately be impossible to ensure that such power wouldn't fall in to the "wrong" hands.
Yet, here is a sad joke that happens to describe the reality we presently live in:
Q: What does almost every piece of software with an update mechanism, including every popular operating system, have in common?
A: Secure golden keys, cryptographic single-points-of-failure which can be used to enable total system compromise via targeted malicious software updates.
I'll define those terms: By "malicious software update," I mean that someone tricks your computer into installing an inauthentic version of some software which causes your computer to do things you don't want it to do. A "targeted malicious software update" means that only the attacker's intended target(s) will receive the update, which greatly decreases the likelihood of anyone ever noticing it. To perform a targeted malicious software update, an attacker needs two things: (1) to be in a position to supply the update and (2) to be able to convince the victim's existing software that the malicious update is authentic. Finally, by "total system compromise" I mean that the attacker obtains all of the authority held by the program they're impersonating an update to. In the case of an operating system, this means that the attacker can subvert any application on that computer and obtain any encryption keys or other unencrypted data that the application has access to.
A backdoored encryption system which allows attackers to decrypt arbitrary data that their targets have encrypted is a significantly different kind of capability than a backdoor which allows attackers to run arbitrary software on their targets' computers. I think many informed people discussing The Washington Post's request for a "secure golden key" assumed they were talking about the former type of backdoor, though it isn't clear to me if the editorial's authors actually understand the difference.
From an attacker perspective, each capability has some advantages. The former allows for passively-collected encrypted communications and other surreptitiously obtained encrypted data to be decrypted. The latter can only be used when the necessary conditions exist for an active attack to be executed, but when those conditions exist it allows for much more than mere access to already-obtained-but-encrypted data. Any data on the device can be exfiltrated, including encryption keys and new data which can be collected from attached microphones, cameras, or other peripherals.
Many software projects have only begun attempting to verify the authenticity of their updates in recent years. But even among projects that have been trying to do it for decades, most still have single points of devastating failure.
In some systems there are a number of keys where if any one of them is compromised such an attack becomes possible. In other cases it might be that signatures from two or even three keys are necessary, but when those keys are all controlled by the same company (or perhaps even the same person) the system still has single points of failure.
Further ReadingThis problem exists in almost every update system in wide use today. Even my favorite operating system, Debian, has this problem. If you use Debian or a Debian derivative like Ubuntu, you can see how many single points of failure you have in your update authenticity mechanism with this command:sudo apt-key list | grep pub | wc -l
For the computer I'm writing this on, the answer is nine. When I run the apt-get update command, anyone with any one of those nine keys who is sitting between me and any of the webservers I retrieve updates from could send me malicious software and I will run it as root.
How did we get here? How did so many well-meaning people build so many fragile systems with so many obvious single points of failure?
I believe it was a combination of naivety and hubris. They probably thought they would be able keep the keys safe against realistic attacks, and they didn't consider the possibility that their governments would actually compel them to use their keys to sign malicious updates.
Fortunately, there is some good news. The FBI is presently demonstrating that this was never a good assumption, which finally means that the people who have been saying for a long time that we need to remove these single points of failure can't be dismissed as unreasonably paranoid anymore.
Further ReadingI won't write much about the specifics of the FBI/Apple situation, because there are already plenty of in-depth accounts of the many details of the case. The important thing to understand is that the FBI is demanding that Apple provide them with a signed software update which will disable an iPhone feature which deletes data after a certain number of failed attempts at guessing the PIN (which, along with a per-device secret, is the seed from which the encryption key is derived). On iPhones with relatively short PINs, this effectively "breaks" the encryption because a small key space can be quickly searched.(On my Debian system, such a feature doesn't even exist. If someone has my encrypted hard drive, they can freely attempt to brute-force my disk passphrase'--but hopefully most people's disk crypto passphrases on computers with keyboards are stronger than a short PIN. If an attacker can convince my computer to run arbitrary code while the disk is decrypted, the key can be exfiltrated and the strength of the passphrase becomes irrelevant.)
So when Apple says the FBI is trying to "force us to build a backdoor into our products," what they are really saying is that the FBI is trying to force them to use a backdoor which already exists in their products. (The fact that the FBI is also asking them to write new software is not as relevant, because they could pay somebody else to do that. The thing that Apple can provide which nobody else can is the signature.)
Is it reasonable to describe these single points of failure as backdoors? I think many people might argue that industry-standard systems for ensuring software update authenticity do not qualify as backdoors, perhaps because their existence is not secret or hidden in any way. But in the present Apple case where they are themselves using the word "backdoor," abusing their cryptographic single point of failure is precisely what the FBI is demanding.
Apple might prevail in their current conflict with the FBI, but the fact that they could also lose means they may have already lost to someone else. Imagine if some other murderous criminal organization wanted to access data on a PIN-encrypted iPhone. What if they, like the FBI has now done, found some people who understand how the technology works and figured out who needs to be coerced to make it possible? Having access to a "secure golden key" could be quite dangerous if sufficiently motivated people decide that they want access to it.
I'm optimistic that the demands the FBI is making to Apple will serve as a wakeup call to many of the people responsible for widely-used software distribution infrastructures. I expect that in the not-too-distant future, for many applications at least, attackers wishing to perform targeted malicious updates will be unable to do so without compromising a multitude of keys held by many people in many different legal jurisdictions. There are a number of promising projects which could help achieve that goal, including the DeDiS Cothority and the Docker project's Notary.
Being free of single points of failure should be a basic requirement for any new software distribution mechanisms deployed today.
iPhone Hacking: What Apple plans to say to Congress about encryption | BGR
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 06:09
Tomorrow afternoon, the ongoing debate surrounding whether or not Apple should be compelled to help the FBI hack into an iPhone owned by one of the San Bernardino shooters will head to Washington D.C. There, Apple will appear before Congress and present a number of arguments detailing why acquiescing to the FBI's demands would set a dangerous precedent. Fittingly, the title of tomorrow's hearing is called, ''The Encryption Tightrope: Balancing Americans' Security and Privacy.''
Also scheduled to testify before Congress tomorrow is FBI director James Comey, thereby ensuring that the House Judiciary Committee hears all sides of this contentious debate.
Set to appear on Apple's behalf tomorrow is Bruce Sewell, the company's General Counsel and Senior VP of Legal and Global Security. Ahead of the hearing, Apple has made available Sewell's opening remarks, which you can read in its entirety below.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman. It's my pleasure to appear before you and the Committee today on behalf of Apple. We appreciate your invitation and the opportunity to be part of the discussion on this important issue which centers on the civil liberties at the foundation of our country.
I want to repeat something we have said since the beginning'--that the victims and families of the San Bernardino attacks have our deepest sympathies and we strongly agree that justice should be served. Apple has no sympathy for terrorists.
We have the utmost respect for law enforcement and share their goal of creating a safer world. We have a team of dedicated professionals that are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to assist law enforcement. When the FBI came to us in the immediate aftermath of the San Bernardino attacks, we gave all the information we had related to their investigation. And we went beyond that by making Apple engineers available to advise them on a number of additional investigative options.
But we now find ourselves at the center of an extraordinary circumstance. The FBI has asked a Court to order us to give them something we don't have. To create an operating system that does not exist'--because it would be too dangerous. They are asking for a backdoor into the iPhone'--specifically to build a software tool that can break the encryption system which protects personal information on every iPhone.
As we have told them'--and as we have told the American public'--building that software tool would not affect just one iPhone. It would weaken the security for all of them. In fact, just last week Director Comey agreed that the FBI would likely use this precedent in other cases involving other phones. District Attorney Vance has also said he would absolutely plan to use this on over 175 phones. We can all agree this is not about access to just one iPhone.
The FBI is asking Apple to weaken the security of our products. Hackers and cyber criminals could use this to wreak havoc on our privacy and personal safety. It would set a dangerous precedent for government intrusion on the privacy and safety of its citizens.
Hundreds of millions of law-abiding people trust Apple's products with the most intimate details of their daily lives'--photos, private conversations, health data, financial accounts, and information about the user's location as well as the location of their friends and families. Some of you might have an iPhone in your pocket right now, and if you think about it, there's probably more information stored on that iPhone than a thief could steal by breaking into your house. The only way we know to protect that data is through strong encryption.
Every day, over a trillion transactions occur safely over the Internet as a result of encrypted communications. These range from online banking and credit card transactions to the exchange of healthcare records, ideas that will change the world for the better, and communications between loved ones. The U.S. government has spent tens of millions of dollars through the Open Technology Fund and other U.S. government programs to fund strong encryption. The Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technology, convened by President Obama, urged the U.S. government to fully support and not in any way subvert, undermine, weaken, or make vulnerable generally available commercial software.
Encryption is a good thing, a necessary thing. We have been using it in our products for over a decade. As attacks on our customers' data become increasingly sophisticated, the tools we use to defend against them must get stronger too. Weakening encryption will only hurt consumers and other well-meaning users who rely on companies like Apple to protect their personal information.
Today's hearing is titled Balancing Americans' Security and Privacy. We believe we can, and we must, have both. Protecting our data with encryption and other methods preserves our privacy and it keeps people safe.
The American people deserve an honest conversation around the important questions stemming from the FBI's current demand:
Do we want to put a limit on the technology that protects our data, and therefore our privacy and our safety, in the face of increasingly sophisticated cyber attacks? Should the FBI be allowed to stop Apple, or any company, from offering the American people the safest and most secure product it can make?
Should the FBI have the right to compel a company to produce a product it doesn't already make, to the FBI's exact specifications and for the FBI's use?
We believe that each of these questions deserves a healthy discussion, and any decision should be made after a thoughtful and honest consideration of the facts.
Most importantly, the decisions should be made by you and your colleagues as representatives of the people, rather than through a warrant request based on a 220-year-old statute.
At Apple, we are ready to have this conversation. The feedback and support we're hearing indicate to us that the American people are ready, too.
We feel strongly that our customers, their families, their friends and their neighbors will be better protected from thieves and terrorists if we can offer the very best protections for their data. And at the same time, the freedoms and liberties we all cherish will be more secure.
Thank you for your time. I look forward to answering your questions.
Apple Wins Major Court Victory in its Battle Against FBI in a Case Similar to San Bernardino
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 16:46
Apple scored a major legal victory in its ongoing battle against the FBI on Monday when a federal magistrate judge in New York rejected the U.S. government's request as part of a drug case to force the company to help it extract data from a locked iPhone. The ruling from U.S. Magistrate Judge James Orenstein was issued as part of the criminal case against Jun Feng, who pleaded guilty in October to drug charges. It is a significant boost to Apple's well-publicized campaign to resist the FBI's similar efforts in the case of the San Bernardino killers.
In the case that gave rise to Monday's ruling, the Drug Enforcement Administration had seized '-- but, even after consultation with the FBI, claimed it was unable to access '-- Feng's iPhone 5. The DEA and FBI said they could not overcome security measures embedded in Apple's operating system. The government thus filed a motion seeking an order requiring ''Apple to assist'' the investigation ''under the authority of the All Writs Act'' '-- the same 1789 law the FBI is invoking in the San Bernardino case '-- by ''help[ing] the government bypass the passcode security.'' Apple objected, noting that there were nine other cases currently pending in which the government was seeking a similar order.
Judge Orenstein applied previous legal decisions interpreting the AWA and concluded that the law does not ''justif[y] imposing on Apple the obligation to assist the government's investigation against its will.'' In a formulation extremely favorable to Apple, the judge wrote that the key question raised by the government's request is whether the AWA allows a court ''to compel Apple '-- a private party with no alleged involvement in Feng's criminal activity '-- to perform work for the government against its will.''
The court ruled that the law permits no such result '-- both because relevant law contains limits on what companies like Apple are required to do, and because Congress never enacted any such obligations. Moreover, the judge said of the government's arguments for how the AWA should be applied: ''The implications of the government's position are so far-reaching '-- both in terms of what it would allow today and what it implies about congressional intent in 1789 '-- as to produce impermissibly absurd results.''
Perhaps most devastating to the FBI's case is Orenstein's recognition that the purpose of the FBI's request is not simply to obtain evidence in one particular case, but rather to grant the government broad, precedential authority to force Apple and other tech companies to take affirmative technological steps to cooperate with criminal investigations generally. That the FBI is seeking to establish broad precedent is a key argument made by Apple and its supporters in the San Bernardino case. To accept that the U.S. government has this power, ruled the court, is to vest law enforcement agencies with statutory authority that Congress itself never enacted:
The Application before this court is by no means singular: the government has to date successfully invoked the AWA to secure Apple's compelled assistance in bypassing the passcode security of Apple devices at least 70 times in the past; it has pending litigation in a dozen more cases in which Apple has not yet been forced to provide such assistance; and in its most recent use of the statute it goes so far as to contend that a court '-- without any legislative authority other than the AWA '-- can require Apple to create a brand new product that impairs the utility of the products it is in the business of selling.
It is thus clear that the government is relying on the AWA as a source of authority that is legislative in every meaningful way: something that can be cited as a basis for getting the relief it seeks in case after case without any need for adjudication of the particular circumstances of an individual case (as the arguments that the government relies on here to justify entering an AWA order against Apple would apply with equal force to any instance in which it cannot bypass the passcode security of an Apple device it has a warrant to search).
The judge also accused the government of trying to manipulate secret judicial proceedings to obtain powers for itself against Apple that public debate and Congress would never permit. It is, Orenstein wrote, ''clear that the government has made the considered decision that it is better off securing such crypto-legislative authority from the courts (in proceedings that had always been, at the time it filed the instant Application, shielded from public scrutiny) rather than taking the chance that open legislative debate might produce a result less to its liking.'' Because the government wants the courts rather than Congress to grant this power, the ''government's interpretation of the breadth of authority the AWA confers on courts of limited jurisdiction '... raises serious doubts about how such a statute could withstand constitutional scrutiny under the separation-of-powers doctrine.''
Monday's ruling boosts Apple's case against the FBI in numerous other ways, as much of it is applicable to the San Bernardino case. To begin with, the judge emphasized that ''Apple had no involvement in Feng's crime, and it has taken no affirmative action to thwart the government's investigation of that crime'' '-- exactly as is true for San Bernardino. Moreover, ''Apple lawfully sold to Feng, as it sells to millions of law-abiding individuals and entities (including the government itself), a product that can effectively secure its stored data for the protection of its owner,'' and ''Feng used that device for criminal purposes and left it locked'' '-- as is also true for San Bernardino.
Crucially, the ruling emphasized that ''Apple is not 'thwarting' anything '-- it is instead merely declining to offer assistance.'' While a party may '-- or may not '-- have a moral duty to assist the government in criminal investigations, ''nothing in [prior case law] suggests that the 'duty' '... is legal rather than moral.'' Particularly since Congress has explicitly authorized companies to produce telecommunications devices with security measures, there is no basis to conclude that Apple has done anything wrong by enabling its customers to lock their devices.
Finally, the ruling recognized that forcing Apple to compromise its own security systems at the behest of the U.S. government would impose a considerable cost far beyond financial expenses:
In considering the burden the requested relief would impose on Apple, it is entirely appropriate to take into account the extent to which the compromise of privacy and data security that Apple promises its customers affects not only its financial bottom line, but also its decisions about the kind of corporation it aspires to be. The fact that the government or a judge might disapprove Apple's preference to safeguard data security and customer privacy over the stated needs of a law enforcement agency is of no moment: in the absence of any other legal constraint, that choice is Apple's to make, and I must take into account the fact that an order compelling Apple to abandon that choice would impose a cognizable burden on the corporation that is wholly distinct from any direct or indirect financial cost of compliance.
This cost, Orenstein wrote, is particularly high since '-- rejecting the FBI's claim in the public debate that its request is limited to just one phone '-- ''the record of this case makes clear that the burdens the government seeks to impose on Apple under the authority of the AWA are not nearly so limited.'' To the contrary, ''it clearly intends to continue seeking assistance that is similarly burdensome '-- if not far more so '-- for the foreseeable future.''
The judge seemed to find particularly offensive the government's claim that because Apple is a U.S. company and receives benefits from American society, it has a duty to assist the U.S. government:
Such argument reflects poorly on a government that exists in part to safeguard the freedom of its citizens '-- acting as individuals or through the organizations they create '-- to make autonomous choices about how best to balance societal and private interests in going about their lives and their businesses. The same argument could be used to condemn with equal force any citizen's chosen form of dissent. All American citizens and companies ''derive significant legal, infrastructural, and political benefits from [their] status [as such]'' '-- but that cannot mean that they are not burdened in a legally cognizable way when forced unwillingly to comply with what they sincerely believe to be an unlawful government intrusion.
Throughout the opinion, one finds extreme skepticism about the government's true intentions. In particular, Orenstein repeatedly noted that the government could not demonstrate, or even state, that it would be unable to access the iPhone without Apple's help, strongly suggesting that its real objective is to vest itself with broad authority for future cases that Congress never decided it should possess.
Apple, for its part, insisted on a conference call Monday that this ruling constituted a major victory. A senior Apple executive noted that the case ''is the first opportunity that any court has had to consider '... the demands of the All Writs Act on Apple '... to facilitate the government's access to an iPhone,'' and that Orenstein ''completely sides with Apple.'' The Apple executive continued: ''The court found that Congress has made a legislative choice to exclude Apple from the assistance requirement''; if the government succeeded, it would be ''giving the government power that Congress had considered and rejected.''
The ruling by no means guarantees Apple's victory in the broader fight against the FBI or even in the San Bernardino case. Orenstein had previously issued rulings making clear that he sympathized with Apple's position, rendering the ruling somewhat expected. Moreover, as a magistrate judge '-- the level lower than U.S. district judge '-- his rulings are binding on no other court. It could conceivably add fuel to the movement to have Congress enact a new statute vesting the FBI with these powers. And there are possible distinctions with the San Bernardino case the FBI could make, such as its diminished ability to access a more advanced phone, as well as the relative importance of that investigation (international terrorism v. drug charges).
On the other hand, because the device at issue in the San Bernardino case uses a more advanced operating system than the one in the New York case, the demands the FBI is making of Apple in California are much greater. The Apple executive made the point this way today: ''The difference is fundamental in terms of what we're being asked to do '-- to create something that does not exist, which would defeat the protective mechanisms that we've built into our operating systems. That's the issue in New York, but I think it's incredibly important because in San Bernardino, the burden that the government is trying to impose on Apple is far more onerous.''
Though not binding, Monday's ruling is almost certainly a major boost for Apple, both because of how categorical it is in its rationale in Apple's favor, and because it's the first judicial decision to address these issues directly. In essence, a U.S. judge adopted virtually all of the key arguments Apple has been making against the FBI and, in doing so, ruled that the U.S. government lacks the authority it claims it has to force the company to assist it in criminal investigations by creating new software to help the government break through the company's own security systems.
Read the ruling:
Tech Policy Podcast #32: McCaul Encryption Comission
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 21:52
While Apple's recent refusal to comply with the FBI's demand to unlock the iPhone of a San Bernardino attacker may have pushed privacy and encryption to the forefront of public debate, a bipartisan plan to examine the impact of encryption on law enforcement has been in the works for months. Today, Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX) and Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) introduced legislation to establish a commission to examine the issue. Evan and Ryan Hagemann, the Niskanen Center's technology and civil liberties policy analyst, discuss the potential of the commission.
IRS
IRS raises number of Get Transcript app breach victims yet again
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 19:35
Remember when back in May 2015 the IRS took offline its Get Transcript app because it was misused by cybercriminals to access sensitive personal information of more than 100,000 taxpayers? Well, the final number is much, much higher.
In a statement released on Friday, the Internal Revenue Service said that ''the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration conducted a nine-month long investigation looking back to the launch of the application in January 2014 for additional suspicious activity,'' and discovered that approximately 390,000 additional taxpayer accounts during the period from January 2014 through May 2015 were potentially accessed, and that 295,000 taxpayer transcripts were targeted but not accessed.
''The IRS notes it is possible that some of those identified may be family members, tax return preparers or financial institutions using a single email address to attempt to access more than one account. However, in an abundance of caution, IRS will notify all taxpayers impacted,'' they noted.
The notifications will be sent via snail mail, and will start going out on February 29.
All in all, around 725,000 taxpayer accounts are believed to have been accessed. The IRS upped the original number from May 2015 by 220,000 in August 2015 '' add to this this latest one (390,000) and you get that sizeable total.
All affected taxpayers '' those whose accounts have been accessed and those that haven't, but have been targeted '' are advised to request an Identity Protect PIN, which will provide an additional layer of protection for the taxpayer's SSN on the federal tax return, and will be offered free identity theft protection services for a year.
The IRS has also said that they will be placing extra scrutiny on tax returns with taxpayers SSNs, and special markers on these taxpayer accounts so that IRS assistors knows that they have been targeted in this scheme.
The Get Transcript app will remain offline until the Service implements enhanced taxpayer-identity authentication protocols.
Also, it's not the only IRS app that has been misused by cyber crooks. Some two weeks ago, the Service announced that the Electronic Filing PIN application on the IRS.gov website has been targeted in an automated attack, and the criminals made off with E-file PINs of some 101,000 US taxpayers.
The IRS is using a system that was hacked to protect victims of a hack'--and it was just hacked - Quartz
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 22:18
It ain't easy being an American taxpayer.
The US Internal Revenue Service said last week that the number of records it lost in a 2015 data breach is higher than it previously thought. When the agency first announced in May 2015 that hackers had broken into its website and stolen tax transcripts, it said that about 100,000 people were affected. It bumped that number up to 334,000 last August, and now says the number of records stolen is actually 724,000.
And it gets worse. To protect the victims of the data breach from further harm, the IRS provided them with ''Identity Protection PINs.'' The PINs are secret codes those taxpayers now have to put on all of their tax returns, or the IRS won't accept them. As long as they keep their PINs secret, they should be safe from fraud.
For this master plan to work, though, the IRS would also have to keep the PINs secret. Unfortunately, it seems the agency is having some trouble with that.
Security researcher and journalist Brian Krebs reported yesterday (March 1) that at least one of the PINs has been compromised. An accountant in South Dakota, Becky Wittrock, told Krebs she was assigned her PIN in 2014, after she was a victim of fraud. When she filed her tax return this year, she found out the PIN had already been used:
Wittrock said she found out her IP PIN had been compromised by thieves this year after she tried to file her tax return on Feb. 25, 2016. Turns out, the crooks beat her to the punch by more than three weeks, filing a large refund request with the IRS on Feb. 2, 2016.
But how could a secret code meant to stop fraud be used to commit more fraud? Get ready for some terrible/wonderful irony. If someone loses their PIN, they can retrieve it by logging into a service on the IRS website. And that login process is secured by the same technology that hackers broke through in the original data breach.
That technology is called Knowledge-Based Authentication, or KBA, which asks security questions to confirm a user's identity. You've probably seen this before. KBA asks questions about a person's credit history, like ''On which of the following streets have you lived?'' or ''What is your total scheduled monthly mortgage payment?'' and provides multiple-choice answers.
The hackers who stole tax transcripts in the 2015 data breach found a way to correctly answer those questions on the IRS's ''Get Transcript'' page, which has since been taken down. The service to retrieve an IP PIN not only stayed up, but was the only barrier between hackers and the secret codes given to the victims of the original breach. It's been right there this entire time, still using KBA to verify users.
And certainly, the IRS was aware of the weakness. Even before last year's data breach, the Government Accountability Office tested the IP PIN authentication process, and described the results in a 2015 report (pdf). ''Some likely identity thieves were able to correctly answer authentication questions,'' the report said, ''while some legitimate taxpayers were not.''
In a statement given to Quartz, the IRS said that although it's been reviewing the authentication process for IP PIN retrieval, ''most taxpayers receive their IP PIN via mail and never use the tool.'' It also pointed out that ''unlike Get Transcript, the IP PIN tool is available to a limited number of taxpayers who must have special markers on their tax accounts to successfully access the tool.''
It added: ''The IRS has a number of protections to monitor traffic on IRS.gov, and we continue to closely monitor the IP PIN situation.''
Related stories:
A rare detailed look inside the IRS's massive data breach, via a security expert who was a victim
The role of Nigerian romance scammers in the IRS data breach
NA-Tech News
Google Cars
google car crash doc
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 05:11
Google self-driving car hits a bus - BBC News
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 15:42
Image copyrightAPImage caption Google cars have clocked up over one million miles on public roads One of Google's self-driving cars crashed into a bus in California last month. There were no injuries.
It is not the first time one of Google's famed self-driving cars has been involved in a crash, but it may be the first time it has caused one.
Google is to meet with California's Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to discuss the incident, and determine where the blame lies.
On 14 February the car, travelling at 2mph (3km/h), pulled out in front of a public bus going 15mph (24km/h).
The human in the Google vehicle reported that he assumed the bus would slow down to let the car out, and so he did not override the car's self-driving computer.
The crash happened in Mountain View, near Google's headquarters.
In a statement, Google said: "We clearly bear some responsibility, because if our car hadn't moved, there wouldn't have been a collision.
"That said, our test driver believed the bus was going to slow or stop to allow us to merge into the traffic, and that there would be sufficient space to do that."
Image copyrightGetty ImagesImage caption In all previous Google self-driving car collisions other road users were to blame The company's self-driving cars have clocked up well over a million miles across various states in the US, and until now have only reported minor "fender benders" - the American slang for a small collision.
In all of those cases, other road users were to blame.
Google releases a monthly report detailing the testing of its self-driving technology.
Ahead of the February report's publication, due Tuesday, a traffic incident filing was made public by the DMV.
"The Google AV [autonomous vehicle] test driver saw the bus approaching in the left side mirror but believed the bus would stop or slow to allow the Google AV to continue," the report read.
"Approximately three seconds later, as the Google AV was re-entering the centre of the lane it made contact with the side of the bus.
"The Google AV was operating in autonomous mode and travelling at less than two mph, and the bus was travelling at about 15mph at the time of contact."
The car's movements were made more complex, the report said, by the presence of sandbags on the road.
Google said it had now refined its self-driving algorithm.
"From now on, our cars will more deeply understand that buses (and other large vehicles) are less likely to yield to us than other types of vehicles, and we hope to handle situations like this more gracefully in the future."
If the DMV considers the Google car to be at fault for the collision, it could be seen as a setback for the company's ambitious autonomous vehicle plans.
The bus crash came just four days after a legal breakthrough for the self-driving project - the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration told Google it would likely give the self-driving computer the same legal treatment as a human driver.
That decision would pave the way for self-driving cars without any typical controls, such as a steering wheel or pedals.
Follow Dave Lee on Twitter @DaveLeeBBC and on Facebook
See That Billboard? It May See You, Too - NYTimes.com
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 05:35
Pass a billboard while driving in the next few months, and there is a good chance the company that owns it will know you were there and what you did afterward.
Clear Channel Outdoor Americas, which has tens of thousands of billboards across the United States, will announce on Monday that it has partnered with several companies, including AT&T, to track people's travel patterns and behaviors through their mobile phones.
By aggregating the trove of data from these companies, Clear Channel Outdoor hopes to provide advertisers with detailed information about the people who pass its billboards to help them plan more effective, targeted campaigns. With the data and analytics, Clear Channel Outdoor could determine the average age and gender of the people who are seeing a particular billboard in, say, Boston at a certain time and whether they subsequently visit a store.
''In aggregate, that data can then tell you information about what the average viewer of that billboard looks like,'' said Andy Stevens, senior vice president for research and insights at Clear Channel Outdoor. ''Obviously that's very valuable to an advertiser.''
Clear Channel and its partners '-- AT&T Data Patterns, a unit of AT&T that collects location data from its subscribers; PlaceIQ, which uses location data collected from other apps to help determine consumer behavior; and Placed, which pays consumers for the right to track their movements and is able to link exposure to ads to in-store visits '-- all insist that they protect the privacy of consumers. All data is anonymous and aggregated, they say, meaning individual consumers cannot be identified.
Still, Mr. Stevens acknowledged that the company's new offering ''does sound a bit creepy.''
But, he added, the company was using the same data that mobile advertisers have been using for years, and showing certain ads to a specific group of consumers was not a new idea. ''It's easy to forget that we're just tapping into an existing data ecosystem,'' he said.
In many ways, billboards are still stuck in the old-media world, where companies tried to determine how many people saw billboards by counting the cars that drove by. But in recent years, billboard companies have made more of an effort to step into the digital age. Some billboards, for example, have been equipped with small cameras that collect information about the people walking by. Clear Channel Outdoor's move is yet another attempt to modernize billboards and enable the kind of audience measurements that advertisers have come to expect.
Privacy advocates, however, have long raised questions about mobile device tracking, particularly as companies have melded this location information with consumers' online behavior to form detailed audience profiles. Opponents contend that people often do not realize their location and behavior are being tracked, even if they have agreed at some point to allow companies to monitor them. And while nearly all of these companies claim that the data they collect is anonymous and aggregated '-- and that consumers can opt out of tracking at any time '-- privacy advocates are skeptical.
''People have no idea that they're being tracked and targeted,'' said Jeffrey Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy. ''It is incredibly creepy, and it's the most recent intrusion into our privacy.''
The Federal Trade Commission has brought a number of cases related to mobile device tracking and the collection of geolocation information. In 2013, the agency settled charges with the company behind a popular Android app that turned mobile devices into flashlights. The agency said the company's privacy policy did not inform consumers that it was sharing their location information with third parties like advertisers. Last year, the agency settled charges against Nomi Technologies, a retail-tracking company that uses signals from shoppers' mobile phones to track their movements through stores. The agency claimed that the company had misled consumers about their opt-out options.
For Clear Channel Outdoor, the goal is to give advertisers tools to buy and measure the effectiveness of outdoor ads that are similar to those they use for digital and mobile ads. It tested the suite of data and analytics, which it calls Radar, with the shoe company Toms and said it found a rise in brand awareness and purchases.
Clear Channel Outdoor will offer Radar in its top 11 markets, including Los Angeles and New York, starting on Monday, with plans to make it available across the country later this year.
CLIPS AND DOCS
VIDEO-US State Dept Spokeperson: I don't know whether US provided Dutch with MH17 radar data - YouTube
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 15:41
VIDEO-Trump Is The GOP's Frankenstein Monster! Senator Harry Reid - YouTube
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 15:24
VIDEO-U.N.: 'Imminent crisis' at Greek border | Reuters.com
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 15:15
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Girls train to box their way to glory for...Tue, Mar 01, 2016 -(1:04)
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The road to Super TuesdaySun, Feb 28, 2016 -(1:00)
FIFA rogue's galleryFri, Feb 26, 2016 -(1:10)
A history of the Oscars' best actorsFri, Feb 26, 2016 -(0:21)
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New York Fashion Week: The ShowsMon, Feb 15, 2016 -(0:51)
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Washington's baby panda scales treeWed, Feb 10, 2016 -(0:18)
All eyes on the New Hampshire primaryMon, Feb 08, 2016 -(1:49)
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Hard times in Atlantic CityThu, Jan 28, 2016 -(1:54)
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Fifth aniversary of Egypt's 2011 uprisngTue, Jan 26, 2016 -(2:15)
Famous Faces of the World Economic Forum 2016Fri, Jan 22, 2016 -(1:18)
Gaza's parkour teamThu, Jan 21, 2016 -(0:44)
Kicking the habit in KabulThu, Jan 21, 2016 -(1:27)
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Martin Luther King Jr. DayTue, Jan 19, 2016 -(1:47)
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One year anniversary of Charlie HebdoThu, Jan 07, 2016 -(1:37)
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Algeria's Tattooed womenMon, Jan 04, 2016 -(1:01)
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VIDEO-Fox News Reporter Schools State Department on Clinton Emails - YouTube
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 14:46
VIDEO-Tusk tells migrants ''do not to come to Europe'' | euronews, world news
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 14:32
The European Council President Donald Tusk has warned potential migrants not to risk coming to Europe.
Speaking after talks with the Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, Tusk said unilateral actions by EU member states is hurting solidarity and must stop.
''I want to appeal to all potential illegal, economic, migrants wherever you are from. Do not come to Europe. Do not believe the smugglers. Do not risk your lives and your money, it is all for nothing,'' he said.
With thousands of migrants now trapped on the border between Greece and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Athens wants sanctions imposed on member states which have set up temporary restrictions on their frontiers.
The burgeoning crisis adds to last year's chaos when more than a million migrants and refugees arrived in the EU, many fleeing the war in Syria and walking from Turkey northwards.
VIDEO-Flight MH370 investigators to test new debris found off Mozambique | euronews, world news
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 14:27
Debris found off the east African coast has been tentatively identified as being from the same type of aircraft as the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight 370, which disappeared two years ago with 239 people on board.
The debris, said to be 90 centimetres long and 57 centimetres wide, was discovered off the coast of Mozambique.
The plane had been en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing in March 2014 when it went missing.
Radar data showed it turned sharply and flew back across the Malay peninsula until contact was lost off the coast of Thailand.
Malaysia and Australia are working together to recover the wreckage. It's thought the new piece will be sent to Australia to be examined.
''Our role obviously as the lead agency in Australia is to continue the search area in the Southern Ocean but when there's a piece of metal found of interest to us, it will be properly assessed,'' said Australian Transport Minister Darren Chester. ''The search is continuing. We've searched about 85-thousand square kilometers of the 120-thousand square kilometer search area.''
Of those on board, the majority (152) were Chinese, and there were also dozens of Malaysians.
Its government says the debris will be ''under Malaysian custody''.
''Immediately we can start discussing on the details of recovering the debris. So we would like to get hold of the debris as soon as possible '' that's why we are working with Australia in a fast manner,'' said the Malaysian Transport Minister, Liow Tiong Lai.
So far only one part of the Boeing 777 has been found and identified.
A fragment of the plane's wing was discovered last July on the French island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean.
What caused the plane to crash remains unknown.
Theories include a hijacking, a deliberate act by a pilot, or a technical problem.
VIDEO-France warns Britain of migrant influx after EU exit | euronews, world news
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 14:06
France has warned Britain that it will let thousands of migrants head to its shores if the country opts to leave the European Union.
In an interview with the Financial Times, French Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron said a Brexit would affect a deal which allows Britain to maintain border controls in France.
His view echoes recent comments by British Prime Minister David Cameron that a migrant camp in Calais known as the ''Jungle'' could move to southern England if Britain leaves the EU.
Thousands of migrants fleeing war and poverty have converged on the French port over the past year.
But, with Cameron meeting today French President Francois Hollande to discuss security and migration, opponents of EU membership say Macron's comments are part of a carefully orchestrated campaign by London and Paris to scare British voters into supporting the status quo.
VIDEO-RUBIO CAMPAIGN MANAGER TELLS DONORS OF BROKERED CONVENTION PLAN IN MANHATTAN MEETING - YouTube
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 13:20
VIDEO-Trump tones down rhetoric against rivals after Super Tuesday wins | euronews, world news
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 07:15
In his victory speech, the billionaire businessman struck a different note and was generally conciliatory towards his Republican rivals but Trump didn't save any niceties when referring to Hillary Clinton.
''I watched Hillary's speech and she's talking about wages have been poor and everything is poor and everything is doing badly but we're going to make it, she's been there for so long, I mean if she hasn't straightened out by now she's not going to straighten it out in the next four years it's just going to become worse and worse,'' Trump told his supporters in Florida.
''She wants to make America whole again and I'm trying to figure out what is that all about, 'Make America Great Again' is going to be much better than making America whole again,'' he added.
Despite Texas Senator Ted Cruz's victory in his home state and triumphs in Oklahoma and Alaska, the maverick faces a severe uphill struggle to reverse Trump's blooming fortunes.
The Republican establishment's last fading hope, Marco Rubio, recorded his first win to boost his fading chances which makes it unlikely he'll withdraw from the race before the next big nominating contest in two weeks.
VIDEO-Trademark Dispute Forces Yosemite National Park To Change Names Of Iconic Landmarks! - YouTube
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 07:08
VIDEO-John McAfee Say The FBI Is LYING About iPhone Encryption! - YouTube
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 06:58
VIDEO-Top US Commander in Europe: Terrorists, Returning Fighters Now a 'Daily' Part of Refugee Flow | MRCTV
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 05:55
The top U.S. military commander in Europe told lawmakers Tuesday that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) is infiltrating the ranks of refugees entering Europe, and that terrorists, returning foreign fighters and criminals are now part of the ''daily'' flow.
VIDEO-\CNN's Kohn: Dems Will Vote to 'Stop Us from Being Nazi Germany' | MRCTV
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 05:45
Appearing as a guest on Wednesday's New Day on CNN to discuss the presidential race, liberal CNN political commentator and Daily Beast columnist Sally Kohn suggested that Democratic voter turnout will likely be up in November with "stopping us from being Nazi Germany" as a motivator against Donald Trump, inspiring no pushback from co-host Alisyn Camerota over the hyperbole.
See more in cross post at NewsBusters.
VIDEO-NBC: 'Caitlyn' Jenner Being 'Staunch Republican' More Controversial Than Transgender Activism | MRCTV
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 05:38
More in the cross-post on the MRC's NewsBusters blog.
In an interview with ''Caitlyn'' (formerly Bruce) Jenner for Wednesday's NBC Today, news anchor Natalie Morales protrayed the reality TV star being a ''staunch Republican'' as controversial, but not Jenner's transgender activism.
Morales explained that in the upcoming season of I Am Cait, Jenner ''is seen embracing womanhood, developing strong friendships with and learning from other transgender women, who she calls her girl squad.'' Then the reporter fretted: ''Something that hasn't changed, Caitlyn is still a staunch Republican, which led to some heated exchanges during the group's bus travels across the country.''
VIDEO-Energy pioneer McClendon dies in fiery car crash, a day after indictment | Reuters
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 05:01
Wed Mar 2, 2016 | 10:18 PM EST
By Heide Brandes
OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) - Former Chesapeake Energy Chief Executive Aubrey McClendon, a brash risk-taker who helped transform the U.S. energy industry with shale gas, died when his car slammed into an overpass on Wednesday, one day after being charged with breaking federal antitrust laws, police said. He was 56.
McClendon was alone in his 2013 Chevy Tahoe when it sped into an embankment along a remote two-lane road in Oklahoma City, where it burst into flames, a police spokesman said. The cause of death will be determined later by a medical examiner, the spokesman said.
The crash occurred less than 24 hours after the U.S. Department of Justice announced that McClendon had been indicted for allegedly colluding to rig bids for oil and gas acreage while he was at Chesapeake. He had denied the charges.
At a press briefing in Oklahoma City, Captain Paco Balderrama said McClendon was traveling at ''well above'' the 40 mile per hour speed limit before he "pretty much drove straight into the wall." He was not wearing a seat belt.
''There was plenty of opportunity for him to correct or get back on the roadway and that didn't occur," Balderrama said.
Industry executives and state officials remembered McClendon as a "visionary" who ushered in a new era of U.S. energy abundance by pursuing the hydraulic fracturing technology that would unlock decades' worth of domestic natural gas and oil resources.
Over more than two decades, he built Chesapeake from a small wildcatter into one of the world's biggest natural gas producers before resigning in 2013, after a corporate governance crisis and investor concerns over his heavy spending
It may take one to two weeks to complete an investigation into the accident, which occurred about 8 miles (13 km) from American Energy Partners, the company that McClendon founded shortly after leaving Chesapeake.
"Aubrey's tremendous leadership, vision and passion for the energy industry had an impact on the community, the country and the world. We are tremendously proud of his legacy," American Energy Partners said in a statement.
Tuesday's indictment followed a nearly four-year federal antitrust probe that began after a 2012 Reuters investigation found that Chesapeake had discussed with a rival how to suppress land lease prices in Michigan during a shale-drilling boom. Although the Michigan case was subsequently closed, investigators uncovered evidence of alleged bid-rigging in Oklahoma. (reut.rs/1TPxUVy)
REVERED FOR HELPING OKLAHOMA
A native of Oklahoma, McClendon attended Duke University before starting Chesapeake in 1989 with his friend Tom Ward. Ward, who later broke away to launch his own company, SandRidge Energy Inc, called McClendon's death "not only a heartbreaking day for me but a sad day for all of Oklahoma."
McClendon was known for his high tolerance for risk and debt and for his lavish lifestyle, which included the purchase of high-end homes, antique boats and an extensive wine cellar. (reut.rs/1QUfnHp)
On his watch, Chesapeake leased a fleet of planes that shuttled executives to oil and gas fields - and the McClendon family to far-off holiday destinations.
Closer to home, McClendon was revered for helping to bolster the Oklahoma economy and revitalize its biggest city, including landing its first major sports franchise, the Oklahoma City Thunder basketball team, in which he had a minority stake.
He was ''a visionary who raised the profile of Oklahoma,'' Governor Mary Fallin said.
McClendon was one of the foremost leaders of a U.S. energy boom that lifted output to the highest levels in years, reduced reliance on foreign oil and mobilized new pools of investment capital for wildcat drillers.
"I've known Aubrey McClendon for nearly 25 years. He was a major player in leading the stunning energy renaissance in America," Texas energy investor T. Boone Pickens said in a statement. "He was charismatic and a true American entrepreneur. No individual is without flaws, but his impact on American energy will be long-lasting.''
Chesapeake, which had recently sued McClendon's AEP on accusations of stealing trade secrets, offered condolences.
"Chesapeake is deeply saddened by the news that we have heard today and our thoughts and prayers are with the McClendon family during this difficult time,'' the company said in a statement.
McClendon is survived by his wife, Katie, and their three children, Jack, Callie and Will.
(Additional reporting by Liz Hampton and Ernest Scheyder in Houston, and Jessica Resnick Ault in New York; Writing by Terry Wade and Lisa Shumaker; Editing by Leslie Adler)
VIDEO-HACK THE PENTAGON-Defense Department Briefing Secretary Ashton | Video | C-SPAN.org
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 22:03
February 29, 2016Defense Department Briefing on U.S. Strategy Against ISIS Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chair General Joseph Dunford briefed reporters on the latest strategy to defeat'... read more
Defense Department Briefing on U.S. Strategy Against ISIS Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chair General Joseph Dunford briefed reporters on the latest strategy to defeat ISIS,* including a new cyber capability.'‚Secretary Carter and Chair Dunford said this capability is an important use of Cyber Command to distrupt ISIS command and control over the Internet.'‚
* The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), or DAISH/DAESH in Arabic is a militant group that has called itself the Islamic State. close
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*This transcript was compiled from uncorrected Closed Captioning.
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User Created Clips from This Video
VIDEO-Migrant crisis: Dachau concentration camp being used to house refugees
Wed, 02 Mar 2016 15:43
On the site of former Nazi concentration camp Dachau, outbuildings that used to belong to the complex's herb garden are now being used to house refugees. Once a place of fear and death, children can now be seen playing on the site where inmates were forced to spend hours toiling in the cold and rain to cultivate plants intended for use in medicine.
"The buildings belonged to the former plantation, to the herb garden, which was one of the worst labour detachments of Dachau concentration camp, where especially Jewish and religious prisoners were working in order to make the soil arable and to plant medicinal herbs. It was one of the worst labour detachments because the work was mostly outside, and the death rate was immense. And as such it was a place of death and terror," head of Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Gabriele Hammermann said.
The garden complex does not belong to the official memorial site, but is being used by the city authorities to house the homeless and asylum seekers whose applications have been recognised, giving them a home to start their new lives in Germany.
"Now it has become a story in connection with the debate about the migrant crisis. But homeless people and recognised asylum seekers are housed here, not refugees [whose status is still unclear]. And that difference is often not being made in the press," Hammermann said.
The use of the site remains controversial, she said, adding that it would be better to house people closer to the local population. "Fundamentally, we think that other places are more appropriate in order to house people, especially since integration is a major goal. So I think it makes more sense to house people in the centres of towns, not on the outskirts. But at the moment it is a very tense housing situation," Hammermann said.
The German government has said it expects 800,000 people to seek asylum in Germany this year, as Europe struggles to cope with a huge influx of people fleeing war and poverty in countries in the Middle East, Asia and Africa.
With limited housing available, many local authorities have found unusual places to house refugees, including inflatable buildings, sports and recreation centres, and even a virtual ghost town abandoned to make way for a future open-pit mine.
VIDEO-The Encryption Tightrope: Balancing Americans' Security and Privacy - YouTube
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 22:56
VIDEO-Austin radio station flooded with reports of voting machines switching votes from Trump to Rubio
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 19:53
Austin radio station flooded with reports of voting machines switching votes from Trump to Rubio
Nation of Islam's Louis Farrakhan joins KKK in praise of Donald Trump: 'I like what I'm looking at'
Christian leader: Trump reveals that progressives were right about evangelicals all along
'Morning Joe' segment goes off the rails when MSNBC host attacks Trump-hating Tea Party senator
Trump Jr. offers to pay for black celebrities to leave US when President Trump is elected
Texas fears 'brain drain' now that public universities will allow guns on campus
Colbert rips Trump for blaming KKK fumble on 'bad earpiece': 'Take responsibility for the mouthpiece'
Knife-wielding men scream 'Heil Hitler' as they attack Hispanic teens, family at Los Angeles playground
Fox's Bill O'Reilly loses custody of teen children after New York appeals court ruling
High turnout in Texas has Republican congressmen worried
VIDEO/MSNBC Totally Fails Trying to Cover Election From the Road
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 19:31
VIDEO-The Best of Melissa Harris-Perry |SUPERcut!
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 19:31
VIDEO-Fox News Reporter Schools State Department on Clinton Emails
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 19:30
VIDEO-AUDIO-CBS CEO: ''For Us, Economically, Donald's Place in This Election Is a Good Thing''
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 19:29
Les Moonves, the chief executive of CBS, celebrated Donald Trump's candidacy for the second time on Monday, calling it ''good for us economically.'' Moonves, speaking at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media, and Telecom Conference at the Park Hotel in San Francisco, described the ''circus'' of a presidential campaign and the flow of political advertising dollars, and stated that it ''may not be good for America, but it's damn good for CBS, that's all I got to say.''
''So what can I say? The money's rolling in, this is fun,'' Moonves continued, observing that the debates had attracted record audiences.
The CBS media executive also riffed briefly about the type of campaign advertising spending produced by such a negative presidential campaign. ''They're not even talking about issues. They're throwing bombs at each other and I think the advertising reflects that.'' Moonves added, ''I've never seen anything like this and this is going to be a very good year for us. '... It's a terrible thing to say, but bring it on, Donald, go ahead, keep going.''
Moonves made similar comments in December during an investor presentation, which we flagged for readers. ''The more they spend, the better it is for us and: Go Donald! Keep getting out there!'' Moonves said, commenting on the presidential race. In his comments earlier today, Moonves referenced the outcry over his previous remarks and said, ''I'm not taking any sides.''
Listen to Moonves' comments at the conference below:
As we've previously reported, media corporations are set to be the big winner of the campaign season, as candidates and Super PACs are projected to spend a potential $5 billion overall. Much of that money will go to television, internet, and radio commercials, enriching companies like CBS, Comcast, Time Warner, Media General, and the Tribune Company.
The media industry is in many ways complicit in this state of affairs. Media businesses have lobbied over the years to block a variety of campaign finance reform efforts, from better disclosure for advertisement sponsors to a bipartisan proposal to give candidates free airtime.
In 2012, Moonves memorably said: ''Super PACs may be bad for America, but they're very good for CBS.'' In a conference call last February, he was even more bullish, telling investors, ''Looking ahead, the 2016 presidential election is right around the corner, and, thank God, the rancor has already begun.''
VIDEO-Rebecca Traister On Clinton: "Single Women May Not Be Looking For A Feminist Hero"
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 16:40
VIDEO-Footage and 911 Audio of UAlbany Bus 'Hate Crime' | 810 & 103.1 WGY
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 15:11
by 810 & 103.1 WGY
Photo: CDTA
The 911 audio and video footage from the night of the no false UAlbany hate crime has been released. Two of the students, Asha Burwell and Ariel Agudio called to report the incident to the police.
The two of them, along with a third student, Alexis Briggs, will all now face several charges. Those charges include assault, attempted assault, criminal mischief, and falsely reporting an incident.
Here are the 911 calls:
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VIDEO-Melania Trump Reveals One of 'Many Things' She Disagrees With Her Husband On | Video | TheBlaze.com
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 10:56
Melania Trump said on CNN Monday that she has disagreed with ''many things'' her husband has said or done on the campaign trail.
''I don't agree with everything that he says,'' she told host Anderson Cooper. ''But that is normal. I'm my own person. I tell him what I think. I'm standing very strong on the ground, on my two feet and I'm my own person. And I think that is very important in the relationship.''
''Can you say something where you disagreed with him on?'' Cooper asked.
''Oh, many things,'' she responded. ''Some language of course.''
''Language?'' Cooper pressed.
''Yeah, some language. Especially, I was in New Hampshire. The woman was shouting out the inappropriate word. And I was there. And I'm thinking don't repeat it in my head. For him, don't repeat it. Just don't say it because the next day, media all they will talk about is that. But he repeated it.''
Melania was referencing a vulgar term the GOP front-runner repeated from the stage of a New Hampshire rally.
''He's with the momentum, he goes with the flow,'' Melania said. ''He goes with the people, they are having fun, everybody is cheering.''
Cooper asked, ''So he heard from you about that?''
''Yeah. I told him that. Yes,'' Melania answered.
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VIDEO-Even MSNBC's Joe Scarborough Says Donald Trump's Latest Controversy Is 'Disqualifying' | Video | TheBlaze.com
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 10:53
After weeks of criticism for being too pro-Donald Trump, MSNBC host Joe Scarborough said the Republican presidential frontrunner's inability to fully answer the question about David Duke and the Ku Klux Klan were ''disqualifying.''
''That's disqualifying right there. It's breathtaking, that's disqualifying right there. To say you don't know about the Ku Klux Klan? You don't know about David Duke?'' Scarborough said Monday on Morning Joe.
Joe Scarborough, Host, MSNBC's Morning Joe, appears on 'Meet the Press' in Washington, D.C., Sunday, Nov. 10, 2013. (William B. Plowman/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images)
Scarborough then talked to panelist Willie Geist.
''The most stunning thing, Willie Geist, is this isn't buying him a single vote,'' Scarborough continued. ''I mean, is he really so stupid that he thinks southerners aren't offended by the Ku Klux Klan and David Duke? Is he really so ignorant of southern voters that he thinks this is the way to their heart?''
Geist agreed.
''It's hard to imagine an easier political question than 'Will you disavow David Duke and the Ku Klux Klan?''' Geist said. ''Unless you don't really want to disavow David Duke and the Ku Klux Klan'...''
Scarborough said, ''I'm sorry, I don't understand. What's the purpose? You don't know the Klan? Who does this help?''
Trump later claimed CNN's ''lousy earpiece'' was to blame.
Duke, the one-time leader of the klan, endorsed Trump last week. Trump said at a press conference with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie he disavowed the endorsement. However, this weekend, he claimed on CNN he didn't even know who Duke or the KKK was. However, he blasted Duke during an interview in 2000.
(H/T: Mediaite)
VIDEO-Farrakhan Invokes 'Satan' as He Unleashes on Hillary Clinton in Fiery Address: 'That's a Wicked Woman' | TheBlaze.com
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 10:39
The Minister Louis Farrakhan unleashed a series of fiery critiques aimed at Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton during his Saviours' Day keynote address, calling her a ''wicked woman'' and accusing her of orchestrating the ''destruction of Libya.''
''I do not blame you for wanting a female president, but that's a wicked woman,'' the Nation of Islam leader said. ''You can vote for her, but vote for her with knowledge.''
Farrakhan went on to say that Clinton ''can be sweet,'' but accused her of playing games.
''All of the sudden she know about Trayvon Martin '-- all of the sudden, the boy been dead nearly two years,'' he said. ''Now, she's talking about him like she met the mother and oh '... these white people, this is Satan.''
Watch Farrakhan's remarks below:
Farrakhan continued, ''You fall for that crap? Most of you that went to jail for having a little blunt in your pocket, they arranged that, the Clintons. Mass incarceration came about under the Clintons.''
In addition to blaming Bill and Hillary Clinton for broken families, among other societal woes, Farrakhan also took aim at her tenure as secretary of state, saying that she orchestrated the killing of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.
''She, in her person, orchestrated the destruction of Libya and the killing of Muammar Gaddafi. Gaddafi was my friend. He was my brother,'' Farrakhan said, adding that he believes that Hillary Clinton lied by saying that Gaddafi was going to ''kill all his people.''
He also blamed Clinton for much of the chaos going on in the Middle East and North Africa.
''All the refugees fleeing out of Syria, fleeing out of Libya, fleeing out of Northern Africa is because of policies of the government of the United States of America '-- and her specifically,'' he said.
''
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VIDEO-Rubio loses voice before rally | TheHill
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 05:23
Republican presidential candidate Marco RubioMarco RubioEx-RNC chief suggests he'd back Biden over TrumpRomney: NYT transcript could be another Trump 'bombshell'How targeted GOP senators will try to deal with TrumpMORE lost his voice on Monday ahead of a campaign event.
Rubio was introduced by South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, who endorsed him earlier this month, at the event. Haley told the crowd that Rubio had lost his voice.
WATCH LIVE: South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley says Marco Rubio has lost his voice |Watch live https://t.co/RRYw0Yh1gRpic.twitter.com/OLiplwwpP6
'-- WSB-TV (@wsbtv) February 29, 2016ADVERTISEMENT
Rubio proceeded to speak with a hoarse voice after Haley's introduction.An an earlier event in Tennessee, Rubio vowed to sacrifice his voice for the future of the country and to beat rival Donald TrumpDonald TrumpEx-RNC chief suggests he'd back Biden over TrumpTrump orders Secret Service to remove black students from rallyMelania Trump defends husband, says he 'speaks from the heart'MORE.''We've been working hard for you,'' he said, according to Breitbart News.
''And if it means by the end of tonight, I don't have a voice and I have to whisper how strongly I feel about the future of this country, then I'm willing to do it.
''Our Veterans and so many others have given up way much more than just their voice for just one day,'' he added.
Rubio and Trump have engaged in personal attacks in recent days, mocking each others appearance and background.
VIDEO-UPDATE: Sheriff issues expanded statement; Clay Higgins leaves t - KATC.com | Continuous News Coverage | Acadiana-Lafayette
Tue, 01 Mar 2016 05:21
Clay Higgins, the charismatic Sheriff's captain who put St. Landry Parish Crime Stoppers on the international map with his viral videos, has resigned from the Sheriff's Office.
Higgins made the announcement Monday morning on the steps of the St. Landry Parish Courthouse. He says he was not forced to resign, but he felt he need to turn in his badge, which the Sheriff accepted.
"I will not kneel to violent street gangs. I will not kneel to murderers or the parents that raised them. I will not kneel to a discredited, wanna-be, black activist that doesn't really have the best interest of his people in mind, who just wants to make a profit," says Higgins. "I will not kneel to bureaucrats in Baton Rouge, Washington or anywhere else who have forgotten why they wear a badge and who have forgotten who they serve."
Higgins said he loves Sheriff Bobby Guidroz. He admires him and respects him, but he can't abide by his current orders. "I would die rather than sacrifice my principles," Higgins says. "I would leave my wife without a husband, my children without a daddy, rather than kneel to the very forces of evil that I have so long stood against."
His announcement comes on the heels of some controversy surrounding the most recent video Higgins made about fugitives - which was not on behalf of Crime Stoppers. Higgins says per a request by State Police, he put together a video about seven suspects who have been on the run since last fall, accused members of the Gremlins Gang and under indictment on conspiracy charges.
Along with Higgins, appearing in the video were members of various law enforcement agencies in the area and leaders in the black community of St. Landry Parish.
However, the ACLU took issue with an advance copy of Higgins' script for the segment, and several people identifying themselves as family members of the accused gang members said they felt their relatives were in danger because of the segment.
Higgins' Crime Stopper segments are told in his signature monotone, and he often comments upon the accused perpetrators, using strong and uncomplimentary language. He usually ends his segments by speaking directly to the fugitive or suspect, often promising them redemption if they will only turn themselves in. He often refers to religion in his segments, as the source of the promised redemption. He has reported many arrests as a result of the segments, and has reported the resolution of many crimes.
Higgins' strong rhetoric has made him and his videos extremely popular online, each spawning thousands of comments and many thousands of shares. He has started his own business, selling merchandise featuring his more popular phrases, such as "Listen to your Uncle Clay" or "I'm talking to you now, son" to help fund a homeless shelter he is building in St. Landry Parish. Higgins also has been invited to speak at various events and before various organizations, and even was made Grand Marshal of Mardi Gras parades.
Sheriff Bobby Guidroz was quoted in the Daily World after the Gremlins video aired, saying Crime Stoppers had gotten away from its original message, and he didn't like calling out suspects and criticizing people. Guidroz promised to "reign" the segment back in to where he felt it needed to be.
Today was Higgins' first public appearance since Guidroz made those comments.
As for Higgins' future, he says he has options and will remain a constable.
Sheriff Guidroz issued the following statement on Higgins' resignation:
"St. Landry Parish Sheriff Bobby J. Guidroz stated in a press release Monday that Captain Clay Higgins has resigned his position with the St. Landry Parish Sheriff Department because according to Higgins, 'He disagreed with my orders.'
Sheriff Guidroz said, '' My orders to Higgins was to, 'tone down' his unprofessional comments on our weekly Crime Stoppers messages and had nothing to do with the Gremlins video that appeared on the networks. I agree with the Gremlins video. First of all; I repeatedly told him to stop saying things like, 'you have no brain cells, or making comments that were totally disrespectful and demeaning. Second; Clay Higgins appeared on the cover of a local magazine in full dress uniform without my approval and permission. That too is something he didn't like me controlling.''
As Sheriff, it is my duty and responsibility that the message going out to the public be professional, on point and truthful. The public needs to remember the department public information officer is a spokesperson for the sheriff and represents the sheriff's words, thoughts and message. If Clay Higgins cannot agree with my words, thoughts and message, then he is correct in resigning his position."
Later Monday, the Sheriff issued a longer statement. Below is the complete text:
"St. Landry Parish Sheriff Bobby J. Guidroz stated in a press release today that Captain Clay Higgins has resigned his position with the St. Landry Parish Sheriff Department because according to Higgins, 'He disagreed with my orders.'
Sheriff Guidroz said, ''My orders to Higgins were to 'Tone down his unprofessional comments on our weekly Crime Stoppers messages,' and had nothing to do with the Gremlins video or with 'Bowing down to political correctness.' I happen to agree with the overall message of the Gremlins video.
Secondly, I repeatedly told him to stop saying divisive, disrespectful, or demeaning things like, 'You have no brain cells,' 'Knuckleheads', or 'Liars.'
Thirdly, Clay Higgins appeared on the cover of a local magazine in full dress uniform, a direct violation of department policy, without my approval or authorization.
Furthermore, Higgins formed a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) to raise money by selling mugs, t-shirts and other trinkets using the department badge and uniform. Additionally, Higgins utilized the department's physical address in registering his LLC with the Louisiana Secretary of State's Office. All of which are against department policy.''
''As your Sheriff, it is my duty and responsibility that the message to the citizens of St. Landry Parish be professional, on point, and truthful. The department Public Information Officer (PIO) is a representative of the Sheriff, the deputies and the department as a whole. If Higgins cannot operate within the parameters of this office and abide by our policies and procedures, then he is correct in resigning his position.
As your sheriff, I can assure you that my staff and I will continue to provide the citizens of St. Landry Parish with the most professional law enforcement services and protection,'' Guidroz said."
Here is the complete text of Higgins' statement:
"I've asked you all here today, with a heavy heart, to advise of my resignation from the St. Landry Parish Sheriffs Office.I've met with the Sheriff, he has accepted my resignation. I was not forced to resign, the Sheriff did not ask for my resignation. Rather, I've turned in my badge as a matter of conscience. If I may, for just a moment, I'd like to explain.I begin each day, from bended knee.. But I kneel to our Savior.I will not kneel, to violent street gangs... I will not kneel, to murderers... or the parents that raised them... I will not kneel, to a discredited wanna-be black activist, that doesn't really have the best interest of his people in mind, he just wants to make a profit... and I will not kneel, to bureaucrats or politicians, in Washington or Baton Rouge, who have forgotten why they wear a badge, and who they serve. Ladies and gentlemen, I would die, rather than sacrifice my principles. I would give my life, leave my wife a widow, and my children without a Daddy... Rather than kneel to the very forces of evil that I so long stood against. So, if I would sacrifice my life for my principles, surely you must understand, that I must sacrifice my job. It saddens me, that I feel compelled to do so, because I love my Sheriff, I admire my Sheriff... I respect him, he's a good man, with a good heart... Although I'd take a bullet for my Sheriff, although I'd stand with him against any peril... I cannot abide by his current orders. I'm sorry, but I just can't.Paul told us in Corinthians, to place not your faith in the wisdom of man... but in the spirit and power of God. I haven't always been the man that stands before you today. I've spent the last 15 years of my life, struggling to become a better man. I will not go back. I will not retreat. I will not step away from the path the Lord has prepared for me. I will not succumb to the powers of darkness that I've encouraged the world to stand up against. I will be the man, that our Lord intends for me to be... ... No matter the cost. I'd like to speak for a moment, about the badge that I turned in today. All of us, that wear badges, begin our jobs with an oath. A sacred oath, sworn by generations of courageous Americans before us. But that oath, that allegiance, is not to a Sheriff, it's not to a Chief... It's to the constitutional principles that our badge represents. It's to the people, that we've sworn to serve and protect. It's to an American nation, that hungers for truth, and justice... strength, and compassion. It's to a world torn asunder by forces that men like me have sworn by our own life's blood to defeat... as we stand as one, against the very gates of Hell.If I were to continue to wear the badge I resign from today, and to work within the parameters that I've been commanded... I would tarnish that badge. I would violate the principles that it represents... and I just can't do that.Many of you know, the way I grew up... we raised and trained horses. There's a saying, amongst equestrians, and Cowboys... Some horses just don't run well with bit in their mouth... I'm one of those horses. I don't do well... Reigned in. Which is exactly what my a Sheriff said he intended to do. So, although I love and respect my Sheriff... I must resign. Because as a soldier, if I cannot conscientiously carry out my assigned orders... Then I must resign my post. It has been my great honor, to serve with the men and women of the St. Landry Parish Sheriffs Office. It has been my great privilege, to serve, the citizens of St. Landry Parish... The home, that has adopted me, as I've adopted it. My future is bright, because the path I'm on, is illuminated by Gods light... and by his grace, I'll move forward. My endeavor, with Captain Higgins Gear, the non-profit I've established to build a homeless shelter in our parish, will move forward. I will continue to be a cop, I've got many options... And I will prayerfully reflect upon the choices I'll make over these next few weeks. In closing, I make this promise, to the citizens of St. Landry Parish... The badge I turned in today, doesn't belong to my Sheriff... It belongs to you... The people, my fellow children of God of every creed and color... And it's to you, the people, that I promise this day...... If it be Gods will... I will wear your badge again... ... And it will shine. Thank you, for attending, thank you for your kindness. At this time, I'll do my best to respectfully answer any questions."
VIDEO-Scarborough: Donald Trump's Remarks on White Supremacists are 'Disqualifying' - YouTube
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Apple Crack

Apple vs FBI-1-Comey says only this model not future.mp3
Apple vs FBI-2-Nadler gets encryption-Comey does not.mp3
Apple vs FBI-3-The Issa 2000 copy hack.mp3
Apple vs FBI-4-Comey-its like a drooling guard dog.mp3
Apple vs FBI-5-Gowdy-Evidence Free Zones.mp3
Apple vs FBI-6-Ted Deutch Comey Apple Developers get kidnapped!.mp3
Apple vs FBI-7-Comey explains the main crux of Warrant Proof devices.mp3
Apple vs FBI-8-Bruce Sewell-ARMS race.mp3
Apple vs FBI-8-Bruce Sewell-Promotes Telegram WTF.mp3
Apple vs FBI-9-Bruce Sewell-Sensenbrenner-you have no request fror congress.mp3
Apple vs FBI-10-Bruce Sewell-1st and 5th amendment grounds.mp3
Ed Shultz on RT-John McAfee Say The FBI Is LYING About iPhone Encryption.mp3

Elections 2016

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CBS’s Rose Chides Rubio for Insulting Trump Voters by Referring to Trump as ‘a Con Artist’.mp3
CNN Van Jones & Jeffrey Lord Race War.mp3
CNN's Sally Kohn- Dems Will Vote to 'Stop Us from Being Nazi Germany'.mp3
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Romney come sout against Trump.mp3
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JCD Clips

ABC Republican rundown.mp3
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jungle tear down DN.mp3
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Migrants

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Sad News

Yosemite Camp Curry Gone ;-(.mp3
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