Saturday, July 22, 2017

Trump Team Theme Tune: “Weasels on the Run Surrogates Will Follow”

Original Story that the Song is Based Upon

The First Verse Got Team's Attention

The Second Verse Was Their “Coming to Jesus” Moment

Surrogates Fall in Line and Pick Up the Beat
(While One Wife Seeks Ambassadorship)

First, the original story from Bloomberg here.

That is followed by this MSNBC 8-minute clip that explains how the Washington Post picked up ran with the story and is now reporting on it.

My Summary: The iceberg is in sight and this W/H is on a course heading straight for it while simply (and only it seems) shifting or moving around the deck chairs while singing the same old tune as the post title says.

Thanks for stopping by. 

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Quid Pro Quo Anyone, Anyone at All: The Full Puzzle Coming into Focus


Q: Did Trump cave or give into and hand Putin just what he wanted re: Syria?

A: Yes, seems so... Trump announced today that the U.S. will no longer fund or help “moderate Syrians fighting against Bashar al-Assad to remove him from power.”

BTW: That is precisely what Putin wanted: U.S. hand off while he keeps his dirty mitts in play to gain valuable foothold in the Mediterranean arena.

What do we call this then at this stage? I say borders on being treasonous... But, hey, that's just me:

FYI - Def of TREASON here with my emphasis: In criminal law, the term imports the betraying, treachery, or breach of allegiance to one’s own country ... or in their adhering to one's enemies, by giving them aid or comfort, or what they desired or want.

Another point of view here from Talking Points Memo.

B/L: But, so what you ask – and so do I… Trump loyalists won’t even entertain or believe that he is in league with Putin – no matter the evidence otherwise. That in and of itself if truly astonishing, isn’t it? 

Thanks for stopping by. 

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Load All Weasels, Circle the Wagons Defend Trump, Inc. At All Costs

Jr's “Defender-in-Chief”
(Skate & thin ice come to mind)

Source of the following from NY Magazine (Robert Bauer campaign law expert interview). And, also this key question from the Washington Post:
“Can it be a crime to do opposition research by asking foreigners for information?”

Introduction: Mr. Bauer’s analysis is excellent. I have only posted the highlights below, so read check the entire article for the full favor as it were of his complex analysis. The following is in Q&A format. Enjoy - I sure did.

Q: Do you think coordination is potentially an appropriate term for what we’re seeing with the Trump Jr. meeting? 
A: It seems so. I’m not suggesting that all the evidence is in or where it’s ultimately going to lead, but we have email evidence today that somebody with ties to the Russian government, and known by Donald Trump Jr. to have ties to the Russian government, advised that the Russian government was looking to help his father, told him that somebody close to the Russian government — described in an email as a Russian government lawyer — was coming to a meeting to provide some benefit to the campaign. So I don’t see how that isn’t coordinated activity. There’s a party who wants to be helpful to the campaign — in this case, a foreign government — and the campaign ascends to the help and sort of collaborates around, or communicates around, what that help might be.
Q:  There are two categories of laws that may apply not just to Trump Jr., but to the Trump campaign and Russia’s relationship as a whole: federal election laws and criminal conspiracy laws. Is that correct? 
A:  Yeah, and the conspiracy laws connect to the election laws. Because you would have a conspiracy, presumably, should the evidence ultimately support it, to violate the campaign-finance laws. So, the conspiracy would not be free-floating and independent, it would tie directly into the violation of the campaign laws.
Q:  With conspiracy laws, the crime is the agreement itself to commit a crime. It doesn’t matter whether that effort succeeds or is ever carried out.
A:  That’s correct.
Q:  Okay. Federal election laws say that foreign nationals or foreign governments can’t contribute a “thing of value” to a presidential campaign. What does that actually mean?
A:  “Thing of value,” anything of value, also applies to contributions across the board, not just contributions from foreign nationals.
And the theory behind it is fairly straightforward, which is you can, for example, pay for a hall to hold a rally in. Find the cash, pay the rental. Or the owner of the hall can just provide it to you. And if the owner of the hall provides it to you, the owner of the hall’s not providing you with cash, the owner of the hall is providing you with a venue for an event and it’s fundamentally the same thing to you. It’s the same value to you as if, in fact, you had purchased it yourself. So, the “thing of value” limitation is designed to pick up so-called “in-kind” contributions. Not just contributions as cash. Without it, the elections laws would basically be made somewhat nonsensical. There would be no reason to have a contribution limit if the easy way around it was to simply avoid paying cash and to simply provide, in concrete form, whatever it was that the campaign wanted.
Q:  So far, there is no evidence that the Trump campaign had anything to do with the DNC hacks or John Podesta’s leaked emails from last year – but are those things we can consider “things of value” during a campaign? 
A: The hacking of the material and then its release into the public sphere?
Q: Yes.
A:  I think you absolutely can confirm that as a thing of value. President Trump at one point, as a candidate, called upon the Russians  (see the video statement here) to locate the so-called deleted Secretary Clinton emails and said, “I hope you find them.” Later it was said, “Well, maybe he was joking.” 
Well, now it turns out that the campaign was actively looking for this and believed it was very important. I would stress in particular that today the Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, said the campaign wanted that material, or wanted negative information on Hillary Clinton very badly.
An important part of the Trump campaign’s strategy was to create major doubts about Hillary Clinton. You recall the chants of “lock her up,” and President Trump at one point said he was going to appoint a prosecutor, he was going to do a direct prosecution of Clinton. And so any material that somebody could acquire that would dramatically support those claims was of exceptional value to the campaign. Whatever this lawyer promised might have been one thing, the stolen emails might have been another.
But one way or the other, they were looking for negative product they thought would be helpful to them on a matter of central strategic significance to the campaign.
Q:  How difficult would it be to litigate a “thing of value” in court?
A:  There’s a complicated line of cases and law that have to do with “what does it mean to coordinate with an organization that’s spending money.” Sometimes, the candidate says, “Well, I’m engaged in free speech. The organization is engaged in free speech.” There has to be some limit to how far you can regulate communication between allies.
So, I go to see somebody who I think is a supporter and I tell that person something about my campaign that I’m trying to accomplish. Three months later the supporter puts advertising on the air. The supporter is going to say, “Well, that’s my free speech. I’m just taking informed speech and putting it on the air.” I don’t know that you can see that free-speech defense applying here. It seems to me – and I think there’s law on this point – the foreign-national prohibition is for a very different purpose and the free-speech interests here are significantly attenuated.
The purpose of the foreign-national prohibition is to defend the larger political community, as a court recently said. This goes to a fundamental question of defining and protecting what we consider to be the political community entitled to participate in the choice of our elected leaders, and so the breadth of the government’s interest, the scope of the government’s interest, is very broad and very strong, and for that reason some of the free-speech defenses in the coordination world, or in the cases of coordination that you oftentimes see in the domestic sphere, don’t have nearly that force. And I don’t think it ultimately would be upheld in the case where we’re talking about involving a foreign government coordinating with a campaign to win an election in the United States.
Q:  And federal election laws also prohibit U.S. nationals from providing substantial assistance to a foreign national?
A:  That’s correct. It prohibits U.S. nationals from assisting foreign nationals in trying to influence an election.
Q:  Does that cover trying — but not necessarily succeeding — to provide substantial assistance?
A:  I don’t know that it’s clear what constitutes substantial assistance or whether it would be a liability to merely attempt to provide substantial assistance. It’s certainly a conspiracy to violate the election laws, as you pointed out.
It doesn’t have to end in a successful attempt. It can be an attempt, in and of itself, to bring about the fulfillment of a foreign national’s goals. If you assume that the Putin regime wants to affect the outcome of the election and the Trump campaign wants to help them do it, the Trump campaign believes it would be destabilizing to the Clinton campaign. It would demoralize the Democrats. The Putin government is delighted to do it because it wants to create a bit of chaos in the course of our election.
And if the Trump campaign goes about actively aiding the Russians in doing this, denying that they’re involved, refusing to condemn them, reading the WikiLeaks emails, you can read all of that as a form of providing substantial assistance to an effort that, we now know from the emails, they understood that the Russian government was undertaking.
My read on all this – as a follower and novice on the legal entanglement we now see unfolding as the ultimate goal – at least that’s what I see and I’m sure others do, too:
1st:  Op Research in campaigns, yes, all the time – but from a foreign government and their documented operatives – nope – no way, Jose as they say.
2nd:  “A thing or something of value” (illegal) – what a loaded legal mumbo jumbo loophole definition that we now see in play.
3rd:  Anything from a foreign source (like from Russia, China, hell, even North Korea) must and should be taken with the proverbial grain of salt and immediately reported to the FBI – w/o hesitation or doubt about it. Jr. did not do that – what not? Obviously: he wanted “something of value” to aid his father in winning, and if that came from Russia, so what. No one would ever that or even suspect that, right?
“I love it” wait, what – damn, that’s what Donnie Jr. said about the “gift” he thought he was getting. So, never mind.
There is nothing about this story to “love” except maybe to see Donald J. Trump, Jr., Jared Kushner (after he loses his security clearance is booted out the White House front door), and Paul Manafort, and then the “big man” himself get full prosecution of the law and then jailed. 

They have earned prosecution, either by slick deals, or total incompetence – either way they are all criminals and must face a jury. 

Hopefully, Mr. Mueller sees it the same way. Fingers crossed in that regard.

As always, thanks for stopping by.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Trump Jr. Sewer Had Another Major Player He Forgot to Mention - Oops

Rinat Akhmetshin: USSR-born now Russian-American Citizen
and lobbyist for Russian interests
(and Former Russian Counter-Intelligence Officer)

Breaking News and Update on the Donald J. Trump Jr. meeting and a new player previously not mentioned.

His name is Rinat Akhmetshin has been the man of hour since revelations emerged that he attended the infamous Trump Jr meeting. Akhmetshin is a former Soviet Intelligence Officer who came to the U.S. in 2009. He has been working as a lobbyist since and was involved in a lawsuit that claimed he masterminded a hacking scheme and ran negative public-relations campaigns.
Now it gets better.
In addition to that, it also appears that Akhmetshin worked as a lobbyist along alongside Fusion GPS, the company which put together the infamous Trump dossier. That unverified dossier was published by Buzzfeed and was intended as opposition research against Trump. It got its nickname the “Pee Tape Dossier” because of the claim contained within that Russian intelligence agencies had footage of Trump urinating on a prostitutes in a bed at the Ritz-Carlton in Moscow.
That collaboration was highlighted in a complaint filed by GOP Senator Chuck Grassley last year,  According to Grassley, Akhmetshin also did not register as a foreign agent during his lobbying activities and also in the complaint said: “It is particularly disturbing that Mr. Akhmetshin and Fusion GPS were working together on this pro-Russia lobbying effort in 2016 in light of Mr. Akhmetshin’s history and reputation.  Mr. Akhmetshin is a Russian immigrant to the U.S. who has admitted having been a Soviet counterintelligence officer.”
Also, the Grassley complaint said Akhmetshin lobbied with former Rep. Ron Dellums (D-CA from 1971-1998), who was hired by Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian lawyer who just met Trump Jr. They all told staffers “they were lobbying on behalf of a Russian company called Prevezon and asking the Committee to delay the Global Magnitsky Act or at least remove Magnitsky from the name.” (see more below).
Note on Prevezon: It is a Russian holding company that had ties to the money laundering fiasco that Magnitsky uncovered. They paid $6 million to settle and did not admit fault. Even more interesting is Veselnitskaya was Prevezon’s lawyer and came to New York for this case, which is where she was just before her meeting with Trump Jr.

Background on Akhmetshin and *Fusion GPS (see more below) lobbying: They both lobbied against the Magnitsky Act, passed and signed into law by President Obama in 2012.
It gave the U.S. power to defend itself from Russian corruption by withholding visas and freezing financial assets of Russian officials that have violated human rights. The bill is named for Sergei Magnitsky, the man who discovered $230 million missing from Russian tax officials and police officers; later arrested and then died in prison. The U.S. law upset Putin so much that he retaliated by outlawing the adoption of Russia orphans by Americans.
* Fusion GPS: Fusion GPS is a commercial research and strategic intelligence firm based in Washington DC.  The company was co-founded in 2009 by Glenn R. Simpson and Peter Fritsch, both former journalists for The Wall Street Journal.
The company conducts open-source investigations, provides research and strategic advice for businesses, law firms and investors, as well as for political inquiries, such as opposition research.  
Fusion GPS uses “source networks to find information that is not readily accessible or in the public domain.”
Prominent cases:
•  DNC opposition research on Mitt Romney
•  Planned Parenthood Fetus Selling Video
•  USA v. Prevezon
•  Most-current is Trump dossier and Don Jr. meeting

In September 2015, Fusion GPS was hired to do opposition research for Republicans who opposed Donald Trump's bid during for the 2016 presidential election.

When Trump had emerged as the probable Republican candidate for the 2016 U.S. presidential election in the spring of 2016, Republican donors stopped funding the investigation, and Democratic supporters of Hillary Clinton became Fusion GPS's new clients.
In June 2016, after the DNC had been hacked and its emails began to be published online, Fusion GPS retained Christopher Steele, a private British corporate intelligence investigator and former MI-6 agent, to research any Russian-Trump connections. Steele issued a series of memos (June to December 2016) which became known totally as:  The Donald Trump–Russia Dossier.
In January 2017, U.S. intelligence leaders briefed then-President Obama and President-elect Trump on the contents of the dossier.
CNN then reported that U.S. investigators had corroborated some parts of the dossier in February 2017, however to date, none of the information relates to the salacious allegations in the dossier but rather it relates to conversations between foreign nationals.
In March 2017, then FBI Director James Comey (fired on May 9 by Trump) confirmed that the FBI was conducting an official investigation into one of the central allegations in the dossier: That the Trump campaign had coordinated with Russia to influence the 2016 Presidential election.
In March 2017, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) initiated an inquiry into whether the FBI had relied on the dossier and on Steele to further its investigation into Trump and his Russian ties. Others have credited Steele with raising questions about the alleged collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign. Additionally, both Fusion GPS and Akhmetshin were subject of another complaint by Sen. Grassley for failure to register as foreign agents under the FARA. 
So, how is Rinat Akhmetshin connected since we now know that he is linked to Fusion GPS and involved in the pro-Russian campaign in 2016 which involved lobbying congressional staffers to undermine the Magnitsky Act?
On July 14, 2017, it was confirmed by multiple sources that Akhmetshin was the fifth and previously undisclosed attendee who met with Donald Trump Jr., Paul Manafort, Jared Kushner, and Russian attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya meeting in Trump Tower June 9, 2016.
My Summary: All of this reported elsewhere in this blog – and boy is it getting complex and detailed – by design I suspect … only time will tell for surely those involved will not … I am sure Robert Mueller is up to his eyeballs in this … can’t wait to see his full report – but, what then?
The $64,000 dollar question isn’t it. So, hang on tight – it might get rough.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Paranoia Runs Deep But Not “Deep State” Deep: Memo to Bannon STFU

So you two are 100% sure about this “Deep State” thing, right??? 

“Deep State” (author and expert on the topic). Used as a noun: “A body of people, typically influential members of government agencies or the military, believed to be involved in the secret manipulation or control of government policy.”

Sentence Usage: “The deep state and its policy of allowing extremist ideologies to flourish may be the actual issues of concern.”

Amazing story here from Politico and at the center – yep, old Stephen “Deconstruct American System and Rebuild Again” Bannon who has Donald J. Trump’s ear and key position at his elbow, and one who avoids the limelight (I wonder why).

Like a George Lucas Death Star or one of those planet-eating monsters in Star Trek, the Deep State has crashed into the national consciousness.
Suddenly, it’s not just an obsession of those who inhabit the fevered, conspiracy-laced dream world of Alex Jones or Breitbart, but also the subject of countless news stories and headlines of all stripes across the media spectrum — bigger than anything imaginable, undermining the elected president of the United States, threatening the fundamentals of our democracy.
(Hint: and mostly pushed by the Trump camp operatives).

Just like the Death Star, the American Deep State does not, of course, exist. An appropriation from countries such as Egypt, Turkey, Pakistan, and Algeria, where real networks of intelligence, defense and interior ministry officials exercise real power to drive policy, sideline elected officials and eliminate opponents, the American Deep State is nothing more than an invention of President Donald Trump and his allies — the convenient enemy from within that they blame for their frustrations. The leaks that undid former national security adviser Michael Flynn? That was the Deep State.
Reports of extensive contacts between the Trump campaign and all manner of other smears? Yep, the Deep State. The president is said to be irate about this rear-guard action led by, in the words of White House press secretary Sean Spicer, Obama administration holdovers who have “burrowed in and continue to espouse the agenda of the previous administration.”
(Note: Lacking? Any positive proof - oops).
Trump’s unshakable certainty that his Trump Tower phone was tapped seems to be rooted — disingenuously or not — in this same belief from day-one.  Many have written insightfully on the fatuousness of these charges and plenty more. e.g., that there may be only one Obama appointee left in the two premier Deep State institutions: the FBI and CIA. 
As for me, the only paranoia I heard about was years ago during the Vietnam War which I pulled two Marine Corps infantry tours. Paranoia struck deep according to the song, which is truly a classic shared here.
Performed by “Buffalo Springfield

Thanks for stopping by and sharing this moment in history that seems to be repeating itself today.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

World News Reporting and Analysis on Trump's G-20 Performance

The Handshake

President Trump declared his trip to the G-20 summit a “great success.” Chris Uhlmann, political editor for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, saw it a bit differently, saying as part of his on air broadcast in a segment that has gone viral this short extract:
“We learned that Donald Trump has pressed fast-forward on the decline of the United States as a global leader. He managed to isolate his nation, to confuse and alienate his allies, and to diminish America. And you got the strong sense that some of the leaders are trying to find the best way to work around him.” He then went on to describe Trump as “an uneasy, lonely, awkward figure.”
The 2-minute segment is seen below. Also, there is more from the article link here – very good analysis:
Aussie Media View of G-20 and Trump

Seems the world knows Donald J. Trump quite well, um? I wonder how it makes Trump supporters feel … never mind, they think it is only more “Fake News.” And, from a country most of them probably don’t care much for anyway. Welcome to the new American mindset (at least for Trump loyalists) and that is total distrust of anything except what Trump utters for them to believe.
Directly related:
WASHINGTON (from Reuters via Yahoo News) – President Trump's son Donald Jr. agreed to meet with a Kremlin-linked lawyer during the 2016 campaign after being promised damaging information about Hillary Clinton, the New York Times reported on Sunday, citing three advisers to the White House.

Trump's then-campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, also attended the meeting. The Times quoted a statement from Donald Trump Jr. in which he acknowledged meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya wherein the Times quoted him as saying: “After pleasantries were exchanged, the woman stated that she had information that individuals connected to Russia were funding the Democratic National Committee and supporting Ms. Clinton.” Trump Jr. continued: “Her statements were vague, ambiguous and made no sense. No details or supporting information was provided or even offered. It quickly became clear that she had no meaningful information.”
I insert: Don Jr. and Kushner I believe felt the way they did since they realized on money or business deals were forthcoming and little if any damaging info on Hillary Clinton would be offered and accepted to benefit Dear Old Dad.
Allegations of the Trump campaign's ties to Russia have cast a shadow over Donald Trump's first five months in office, distracting from attempts by his fellow Republicans in Congress to overhaul the healthcare and tax systems.
And, as we all know, the Kremlin has denied intelligence agencies' conclusion that Moscow tried to tilt the election in Trump's favor, using such means as hacking into the emails of senior Democrats. Trump for his part continues to repeatedly deny any collusion – including in his G-20 summit face-to-face with Putin.
I Further Note this Astonishing Statement from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who said he “was stunned about how Trump asked Putin about election meddling and hacking” as reported on here from Business Insider.

Thanks for stopping by. Come again.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Sources for Fake News, Misinformation, Disinformation Re: Article Below

Fake News Experts: Sending and Pushing
(Central Theme: Just “Follow the Money”)

Seeing is Believing Just Ask “Honest Abe”

In my view, the #1 generator of the turmoil we see, hear, and read about today all over the place is none other than Stephen Bannon, the man at Trump’s elbow and ear. Time will or will not prove me correct or not. But right now the case in point is this story and as they say: A biggie from Media Matters.
THE STORY IN A NUTSHELL: A false claim posted on 4chan that a Redditor who created an anti-CNN GIF (of Trump punching the network’s logo), and who was tracked down by CNN, was just 15 years old made its way to Donald Trump Jr. and on Fox News within 12 hours. 
Note: Reddit policy statement: “Anyone can create a community on nearly any topic imaginable. Each community is independently moderated by volunteer users. Community members can share content including stories, links, and images.”
Now some truth, if that’s even possible in this day and age of so much not just “fake news” but BS news and sadly, hardcore Trump loyalists cling to and apparently believe every word of it – just listen to them on Talk Radio and at various forums – that is the most damaging.
According to CNN and the reporter who helped identify the Reddit user proved that the man is actually middle aged.
The fact that the claim made to smear CNN for attacking a teenager was able to spread so quickly exemplifies how misinformation from fringe sources can make its way through the “alt-right/fake news” ecosystem and to outlets with a broader reach, such as Fox News in hours if no mere minutes.
Timeline to Show and Hopefully Prove How this BS Wildfire Story Spread:
On July 2, President Trump tweeted a video showing himself wrestling and punching a man with the CNN logo superimposed on his face. The video started as a GIF posted on the Reddit forum (at “The_Donald” from user with moniker HanAssholeSolo). It was later turned into a video with music, which is the version Trump then tweeted. The Reddit user later expressed glee that his GIF had been tweeted by the president. 
On July 4, CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski reported that CNN had identified the man but was “not publishing his name because he is a private citizen who has issued an extensive statement of apology…and because he said he is not going to repeat this ugly behavior on social media again.” CNN then added: “CNN reserves the right to publish his identity should any of that change.”
After that: CNN and Kaczynski received a flurry of criticism, “simultaneously drawing accusations of going soft and issuing a threat,” as The Washington Post’s Callum Borchers wrote. However, among the list of accusations made by online trolls and figures affiliated with the “alt-right” was that CNN had threatened and blackmailed a 15-year-old.
Responding to the allegation, CNN’s Kaczynski tweeted, “HanAssholeSolo is a middle aged man. People claiming he’s 15 are wrong. Some are intentionally spreading this.”
(Note: Business Insider reported that the user had “claimed to be 37 years old in another post.”)
The original claim seems to have first appeared right before midnight on July 4, when a user on the alt-right-affiliated 4chan forum /pol/ claimed that: “the tough guys over at CNN doxed a 15 year old kid.” (Dox def: To out someone, to track them down and reveal who they are publicly).
Within an hour, in the early hours of July 5 Twitter user Kaiser Willy tweeted a photo of the 4chan user’s post, writing, “Potentially huge development in #CNNBlackmail Reddit user is believed to only be 15.”
A couple of hours later neo-Nazi and “alt-right” website The Daily Stormer pointed to Willy's tweet to push the claim, adding that CNNmust be made to taste their own medicine.”
Shortly after 1 am  alt-right personality Rick Vaughn tweeted a photo of a 4chan post of supposed CNN advertisers, writing, “Would be a shame if we make this List of @CNN 's Advertisers a lot shorter after CNN blackmailed a 15 year-old... #CNNBlackmail.”
Then alt-right-affiliated Lucian Wintrich of The Gateway Pundit tweeted, “@CNN pushes propaganda for 1/2 a year, Trump calls them out, they threaten to dox a 15 year old, now #CNNBlackmail is trending. Happy 4th!”
Then Mike Cernovich, an online troll who dwells in the alternative media sphere, retweeted both Vaughn and Wintrich’s tweets. The claim then spread to Reddit’s r/The_Donald, with users highlighting the original 4chan post.
Shortly after that alt-right figure Jack Posobiec tweeted, “I can confirm Reddit user HanAHoloSolo is 15 and is an LGBT Trump supporter.”
Then Paul Joseph Watson of Infowars, also an alt-right figure, tweeted, “The poor kid that CNN threatened to dox is reportedly only 15 years old. #CNNBlackmail.”
At around 7 am, fake news purveyor TruthFeed published a post, claiming, “Many are saying that the Reddit user is actually a 15-year-old kid, which looks even worse for CNN.”
Then not long after that Donald Trump Jr., who regularly pushes fringe claims, tweeted, “So I guess they weren't effective threatening the admin so they go after & bully a 15 y/o?”
By 9:00 am the lie had made its way to Fox News, as frequent Fox News guest Dan Bongino said CNN “outed a 15-year-oldand addedCNN should find sources for its Trump/Russia stories before they out a bunch of teenagers playing their Xbox, making giphys you don’t like.
In response, Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade said that CNN “made the kid apologizeand notedthat the internet was going to bat for the 15-year-old.”
UPDATE: During Fox News’ Fox News Specialists at 5:00 p.m. on July 5, host Eric Bolling repeated the lie, claiming the person being “threatened by CNN” was “a young kid.”

Conclusion: The evolution and dissemination of this claim shows an alarming trend of how “fake news and misinformation” can go from the fringe of the internet to Fox News within a short period of time. Further, the speed with which this falsehood spread demonstrates the dangers of the alt-right/fake news ecosystem, which has helped 4chan to attempt to impact a foreign election campaign and which regularly pushes conspiracy theories and falsities. And we all know how Mr. Trump loves that stuff and that brings me back to the lead sentence: Bannon is behind it – believe – and that is my hunch, not “fake hunch” – but one based a lot of years of experience… what about you?

So for all you DEM/Left/Obama, MSM haters let me ask you a simple question: Where is the outrage about the above “fake news/BS news/outright lies” – um? What cat got your tongue? Thought so. Pathetic isn’t it – which one side to the other and then back again … truth and fact are both lost in this and perhaps forever – so who can we trust and believe? That seems to be out the frigging window doesn’t it? Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

How to Dodge, Duck, Deceive, Deny AHCA Town Hall Q&A: Ask the GOP

Eazy Peazy Solution to Current all GOP-run Government
(Hint: Three words in the box above)

Two examples recent of GOPers skating around their AHCA healthcare bill designed to repeal and replace the ACA (Obama-care) when faced with reality - the voters:

1.  PA GOP Senator Pat Toomey faced an angry protest over his role in the GOP healthcare bill in Harrisburg, PA.

2.  TX GOP Senator Ted Cruz was heckled over his suggested amendment to the GOP bill at an event in Texas.

At the Toomey Event: Scores of people gathered outside the ABC-27studio in Harrisburg, PA where he was holding what had been billed as a town hall meeting, but in reality just eight audience members were allowed into the invite-only event, and their questions had been pre-screened by the news channel.

However, his closed-door approach did not endear Toomey to the sign-waving protesters outside, who accused the senator of not “having courage to speak to people who would be personally affected” by the Senate healthcare legislation he helped to write. Toomey continued to play coy and slick when he denied that the process of drafting the bill – without public hearings – had been overly secretive, but was non-committal over whether he supported repealing the ACA without a replacement and when asked about that twice, he said he believed the scenario was “unlikely” adding: “I just don’t think there are enough votes in the Senate to pass that. I just don’t think it’s going to come to pass.”

At the Cruz Event: Cruz was heckled at what in theory should have been a safe event in McKinney, Texas just north of Dallas at a ticket-only town hall discussion hosted by Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) – a rightwing advocacy group financed by the Koch brothers. It too turned ugly by a few once inside. (The Koch brothers? Well, ho lee shite Sherlock, that figures?)


The majority of GOP Senators have ducked the public during this recess – a time they claim is used to meet with constituents back home – I say: BS.

The Washington Post reports only four planned to attend 4th of July parades. Only three: Cruz, Cassidy in LA, and Moran in KS have public town halls meetings. Cruz and Moran openly oppose the current bill; Cassidy (also a Doctor) says he is “concerned” and has put forward an alternative plan.

And so it goes… and we still tolerate these worms in office. Article here from the Guardian. Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Trump Con-Man Par Excellence: His Supporters Don't Even Know It (Yet)

 He can't accept 2nd place; Always top dog; Always #1; Never disputed

This introduction from FOX now reporting on Trump’s bogus fraud claim and states refusing to bend to is commission request for records … in short, there is no there there.

Now the original post for today and full disclosure on the following: My mother, grandfather, two sisters, and several other close relatives are Republicans - my dad, grandmother and few others are DEMS... like me. So here goes.

The Republican Party has been around for a very long time — 163 years, in fact. So, needless to say, there’s a lot of history associated with one of our nation’s two largest political parties. Of course, the GOP we see today is not the same party it once was — not even close. Today’s Republican party is really a TEA party bunch of ultra-rightwing conservatives who call fellow Republicans hey don’t deem “conservative enough,” RINO — that is “Republican-in-name-only.”

They are not the same people who supported great Republicans like Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, and Dwight D. Eisenhower instead today’s Republicans wouldn’t even support Ronald Reagan if he were alive and ran for office. That’s how far they’ve devolved downward from the days when the party was honorable and could be considered a respectable political organization.

1. The GOP is the party of a president (Lincoln) who waged a civil war to end slavery. Now it supports and defends Trump, a president who is supported and cheered by white supremacists, all because he fueled his campaign with bigotry, racism, and intolerance. 

2. The GOP has gone from the party of a president (Ike) who built the Interstate Highway system and then warned against the military industrial complex having too much influence over the country, to the party for the most part that scoffs at any mention of spending to improve our crumbling infrastructure and makes increasing our already bloated defense budget a key talking point for essentially every member of the party.

3. They’ve become such an absolute joke we’ve seen some Republicans leave the party altogether because of Trump’s success. 

4. GOPers like Paul Ryan — despite repeatedly condemning Trump’s horrific rhetoric during the campaign — have treated most Americans like we’re all brainwashed Trump supporters who believe the absurd lies he’s been forced to come up with trying to defend his documented “childish, reprehensible, and disgusting behavior.” That cannot be disputed.

Ryan is far from the only Republican who knows Trump’s a national embarrassment and unfit for office, but they have chosen to put their party over country to defend someone who’s turned the United States into a global laughingstock. Every day it gets worse. Another fact – undisputed.

Related from a fine article by Eugene Robinson at the Washington Post.

The highlights follow:

This is moment in our history is bizarre for obvious reasons, and as Thomas Paine would write in December 1776:  “These are the times that try men’s souls.”

We have a president who neither understands nor respects the basic norms of American democracy. Make no mistake: Donald Trump is a true aberration.

There is no figure like him in U.S. history, for which we should be thankful.
  • Trump’s inexperience is unique; he is the only president never to have served in government or the military.
  • This weakness is exponentially compounded by his ignorance of both policy and process, his lack of curiosity, his inability to focus and his tremendous insecurity.
  • He refuses to acknowledge his shortcomings, let alone come to terms with them; and he desperately craves the kind of sycophantic adulation that George Washington, a genuine hero, pointedly rejected.
  • He strings along his supporters with promises he has no idea how to keep. Like many a would-be strongman before him, he defines himself politically by the fights he picks; he erects straw men — faceless “elites,” cable television hosts, Muslims, Mexicans, nonexistent individuals or groups waging an imaginary “war on Christmas” — because authoritarians always need enemies. Yet his ego is a delicate hothouse flower, threatened by the slightest puff of criticism.
The Founders, mindful of their own faults, ultimately designed a system to contain a rogue president. They limited his elective term to four years, gave checking and balancing powers to the legislative and judicial branches, and designed impeachment as a last-ditch remedy. The Trump presidency compels all of us to be mindful of our constitutional duties.

The role of the citizenry — to express approval or disapproval at the ballot box — includes making sure that suffrage is not selectively and unfairly denied by restrictive voter-ID laws or partisan purges of the voter rolls. It is heartening that red states have joined blue in resisting the attempt by Trump’s trumped-up “voter fraud” commission to assemble a national list of voters.  Perhaps some future administration could be trusted to make sense of our confusing patchwork of voting systems. This one can’t.

Congress must assert its powers of oversight. One reason the signers of the Declaration gathered in Philadelphia to pledge “our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor” to the cause of independence was that they saw the mingling of royal power and British commercial interests as corrupt. We now have a president whose far-flung business empire — which he has refused to divest, and which his family still operates — presents myriad potential conflicts of interest. Trump has deepened the swamp, not drained it; and Congress has a duty to sort through the muck.

Congress also must let Trump know, in no uncertain terms, that any attempt to impede or disrupt special counsel Robert S. Mueller's investigation into Russian election meddling will have the gravest consequences. 

Trump should be told that firing Mueller would automatically be considered grounds for impeachment.