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201  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: year in review on: May 19, 2017, 10:18:34 PM

https://www.lawfareblog.com/chinas-ridiculously-weak-legal-argument-against-complying-south-china-sea-arbitration-award

China doesn't have a strong legal argument against complying with international law? NFW!  shocked

China has the world's oldest argument: "Come over here and make me do it, Motherf*cker".


MANILA — China’s president warned the Philippines that it would go to war if Manila insisted on enforcing an international arbitration decision rejecting China’s claims over disputed areas of the South China Sea, the Philippine president said in a televised speech on Friday.

Although both sides pledged for now to talk and to avoid confrontation, the remarks by the Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, highlighted the stakes in a part of Asia that has become a geopolitical flash point. The warning — which Beijing did not immediately confirm — also draws attention to a policy dilemma for the United States, which is trying to maintain its naval dominance in the Pacific in the face of China’s military buildup and its construction of artificial islands in disputed waters.

In a landmark ruling last July, the Permanent Court of Arbitration, based in The Hague, delivered a sweeping rebuke of China’s behavior in the South China Sea, including the creation of islands that could be used for military purposes, and found that its claim of sovereignty over the waters had no legal basis. However, there is no legal mechanism for enforcing the decision, and Beijing has refused to abide by it.

In a speech on Friday to the Philippine coast guard, in the southern city of Davao, Mr. Duterte claimed that President Xi Jinping of China had cautioned him against trying to enforce the ruling. Mr. Xi said the two countries could eventually discuss it, “but it cannot be done now,” Mr. Duterte said.

“We intend to drill oil there, if it’s yours, well, that’s your view, but my view is I can drill the oil, if there is some inside the bowels of the earth, because it is ours,” Mr. Duterte quoted Mr. Xi as telling him.

Mr. Duterte described Mr. Xi’s position as, “We’re friends, we don’t want to quarrel with you,” but “if you force the issue, we’ll go to war.”
202  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Russian conspiracy, Comey, related matters on: May 19, 2017, 08:56:23 PM
The whereabout in the white house of Obama : a *source* told me Obama was screwing an intern during the Benghazi attack.  That is why it was hushed up.  And worse that that was after a dinner in which he had *TWO* scoops of ice cream while forcing everyone else present to suffer with only *ONE* scoop. 

So why is this not "breaking news" with power delirious news (democrat party employees) people  urinating all over themselves ranting and raving about this "scoop" 24/7?

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/11/politics/trump-time-magazine-ice-cream/index.html

Any guesses what his name was? Does this mean Reggie Love was out of town?
203  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Nanzi Pelosi used to like Assad on: May 19, 2017, 07:49:44 PM


http://www.nbcnews.com/id/17920536/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/pelosi-shrugs-bushs-criticism-meets-assad/#.WR-R6WjyvIU
 
Pelosi shrugs off Bush’s criticism, meets Assad
Democrat raises issues of Mideast peace, Iraq with Syrian president

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi meets with President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus on Wednesday.
 
updated 4/4/2007 9:28:36 AM ET
Print Font:
DAMASCUS, Syria — U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi met Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Wednesday for talks criticized by the White House as undermining American efforts to isolate the hard-line Arab country.
Pelosi said Assad assured her of his willingness to engage in peace talks with Israel, and that she and other members of her congressional delegation raised their concern about militants crossing from Syria into Iraq, as well the Israeli soldiers kidnapped by the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah and the Palestinian group Hamas.
The Californian Democrat spoke to reporters shortly after talks with Assad at the end of a two-day visit to Syria.
She said the delegation gave the Syrian leader a message from Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert whose essence was that Israel was ready to hold peace talks with Syria.
She did not say more about the message, but Israel has previously made such talks conditional on Syria’s cutting off its support for hard-line Palestinian groups and Hezbollah.
“We were very pleased with the assurances we received from the president that he was ready to resume the peace process. He’s ready to engage in negotiations for peace with Israel,” Pelosi said.
Pelosi and accompanying members of Congress began their day by holding separate talks with Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem and Vice President Farouk al-Sharaa and then met Assad, who hosted them for lunch after their talks.


Pelosi’s visit to Syria was the latest challenge to the White House by congressional Democrats, who are taking a more assertive role in influencing policy in the Middle East and the Iraq war.
Bush voices criticism
Bush has said Pelosi’s trip signals that the Assad government is part of the international mainstream when it is not. The United States says Syria allows Iraqi Sunni insurgents to operate from its territory, backs the Hezbollah and Hamas militant groups and is trying to destabilize the Lebanese government. Syria denies the allegations.
“A lot of people have gone to see President Assad ... and yet we haven’t seen action. He hasn’t responded,” he told reporters soon after she arrived in Damascus on Tuesday. “Sending delegations doesn’t work. It’s simply been counterproductive.”
Pelosi did not comment on Bush’s remarks but went for a stroll in the Old City district of Damascus, where she mingled with Syrians in a market.
Wearing a flowered head scarf and a black abaya robe, Pelosi visited the 8th-century Omayyad Mosque. She made the sign of the cross in front of an elaborate tomb which is said to contain the head of John the Baptist. About 10 percent of Syria’s 18 million people are Christian.
At the nearby outdoor Bazouriyeh market, Syrians crowded around, offering her dried figs and nuts and chatting with her. She bought some coconut sweets and looked at jewelry and carpets.
On Tuesday night, Pelosi met Syrian human rights activists, businessmen and religious leaders at the U.S. ambassador’s residence.
‘Better late than never’
Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem was quoted Wednesday as saying that Pelosi and other members of Congress were “welcome” in Syria.
“Better late than never,” he told the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Anba in an interview. He said the visits were taking place because Americans and Europeans had realized that their policy of trying to isolate Syria had failed.
However, the Syrian ambassador to Washington, Imad Moustapha, was quoted as saying Syria was “wary of the sudden U.S. openness” and would respond cautiously.
“Syria will not hurriedly offer concessions when it refused to offer them under much greater pressure from the United States in the past,” he said in an interview with the Al-Baath newspaper, the mouthpiece of the ruling party.
“Syria will take a step forward every time the Americans take one,” he added.

Toward U.S. engagement with Syria?
Democrats have argued that the United States should engage its top rivals in the Mideast — Iran and Syria — to make headway in easing crises in Iraq, Lebanon and the Israeli-Arab peace process. Last year, the bipartisan Iraq Study Group recommended talks with the two countries.
Bush rejected the recommendations. But in February, the United States joined a gathering of regional diplomats in Baghdad that included Iran and Syria for talks on Iraq.
Visiting neighboring Lebanon on Monday, Pelosi noted that Republican lawmakers had met Assad on Sunday without comment from the Bush administration.
She said she hoped to rebuild lost confidence between Washington and Damascus.
‘No illusions’
“We have no illusions but we have great hope,” said Pelosi, who met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank city of Ramallah earlier Tuesday.
Relations between the United States and Syria reached a low point in early 2005 when Washington withdrew its ambassador to Damascus to protest the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Many Lebanese blamed Syria — which had troops in Lebanon at the time — for the assassination. Damascus denied involvement.
Washington has since succeeded in largely isolating Damascus, with its European and Arab allies shunning Assad. The last high-ranking U.S. official to visit Syria was then-Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage in January 2005.
The isolation, however, has begun to crumble in recent months, with visits by U.S. lawmakers and some European officials.
204  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / This Is A Coup Against Our Right To Govern Ourselves on: May 19, 2017, 03:24:14 PM
https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2017/05/18/this-is-a-coup-against-our-right-to-govern-ourselves-n2328059

This Is A Coup Against Our Right To Govern Ourselves
Kurt  Schlichter |Posted: May 18, 2017 12:01 AM 
This Is A Coup Against Our Right To Govern Ourselves

 

The blizzard of lies and distraction blowing through Washington is not just any routine stuffstorm, but a calculated attempt to bring down a president – our president, not the establishment’s president. And more than that, it’s an attempt to ensure that we never again have the ability to disrupt the bipartisan D.C. cabal’s permanent supremacy by inserting a chief executive who refuses to kiss their collective Reid.

This is a coup against us. It’s a coordinated campaign by liberals and their allies in the bureaucracy and media to once and for all ensure their perpetual rule over us. We need to fight it, here and now, so we don’t have to fight it down at the bottom of this slippery slope.

It’s brazen. It’s bold. It’s insulting to our intelligence. They aren’t even trying to hide their lies anymore. Truth is irrelevant; this is a choreographed dance routine and everyone has his moves. Call it Breakin’ 2: Electric Leakaroo, except instead of trying to save the community center they’re trying to save their power and prestige.

To buy the media narrative on this latest Russian nonsense, you must believe:

1. That whatever was revealed was super-secret, though we don’t know exactly what it was. When in doubt, assume it’s on par with the nuclear codes!

2. That there was no good reason to share this info with Russia, like coordinating our fight against our joint enemy or to prevent another Russian airliner massacre. Because why would we want another power fighting ISIS or civilians not to be blown out of the sky?

3. That LTG McMaster, who literally wrote the book on soldiers standing up to misbehaving civilian leaders and displayed immense personal courage in battle, turned chicken and sat there silently as Trump monologued about this unknown mystery info of doomsday-level import.

4. That LTG McMaster lied on camera. Twice. And that Secretary of State Tillerson lied too.

5. That random anonymous sources in an intelligence community that hates Trump with a burning passion must be believed without question, though we don’t know their identities or their motives.

6. That these anonymous randos must be believed, even though they were not actually in the room to, you know, actually hear what happened. The traditional bar on hearsay is apparently now just a bourgeois conceit.

7. That when the Washington Post and the rest of the media publishes classified stuff (including intelligence provided by allies) leaked by anyone not named “Donald Trump,” it’s awesome.


8. That the Washington Post and the rest of the media, which has been wrong over and over again in their reporting, are not wrong again.

9. That the Washington Post and the rest of the media are objective and have no anti-Trump bias, even though they are literally cheering the hits on the president.

10. That there are unicorns.

The latest pseudo-scandal is that Trump doesn’t think Mike Flynn did anything wrong, and told James Comey so back in February. So basically, Trump expressed the same view he had of the whole Flynn nonsense to Comey as he has expressed to every interviewer. Comey did nothing, and said nothing (even when testifying to Congress) for nearly three months, because it was nothing. The Russian snipe hunt continued throughout unabated. That off-hand comment was a pretty poor attempt at obstruction of justice since it didn’t obstruct anything – to the limited extent these Russian witch hunts can be confused with “justice” at all.


So the Menschian thinkers who usually scream “Treason!” are now screaming “Obstruction of Justice!” It’s adorable when they learn new terms and try to use them correctly; they’re so proud of themselves and their vocabulary building that you almost feel bad having to point out that they sound like idiots.

It is nice, though, to have liberals finally come out against the abuse of executive power, misuse of classified material, and Russians. Welcome to the party, except we know you’re full of Schumer.

It’s all lies, and they know it and we know it. Normal people just shake their heads and wonder why Washington is so consumed with political nonsense instead of solving problems. But then, Washington does not produce solutions. It produces only political nonsense.

This is a concentrated, coordinated effort by elite insiders to take down not this president – Trump’s not the point here – but to take down us, the normal American they seek to rule. Someone came to Washington who wasn’t part of the club, and that’s intolerable. So they are desperate to expel him, and by extension, us.


Every day will be a crisis, every action he takes will be the worst thing that has ever happened, and every step towards keeping his promises a crime.

Repeal Obamacare? TRUMP’S SENTENCING MILLIONS TO DEATH!

Talk to Russians? IT’S TREASON!

Telling Comey he wishes this nonsense would stop? OBSTRUTION OF JUSTICE EVEN THOUGH NOTHING WAS OBSTRUCTED!

Now, this campaign isn’t aimed at us. Normal people, people who don’t live in DC or NYC or LA, just tune it out. After all these years, and with the help of the web, we normals know the game. We’re woke, as the dorky leftists say.

The target of this constant barrage is the soft and the stupid, the smug and the sanctimonious, the wusses and the surrender flunkies. That’s why you get the girlish-handed likes of David Brooks writing dainty columns that give Trump such a pinch! That’s why David Frum starts using words like “courage” to impugn actual men who have done actual man-things, like LTG McMaster. That’s why Kasich spews his bilious funk of sanctimony and submission, among other funks. It’s all to appeal to the Fredocons, the soft-headed RINOs who are smart, not dumb like everyone says, who just want something for themselves – attention, approval, and media pats on their pointy little heads.

So these fussy ninnies, fresh from having some v-capped crone screeching at them that they will vote to take away her right to have taxpayers fork cash over to kill the baby no man will ever give her, wander outside into a wall of mics and cameras and pause. Then they talk, and when what they say trashes Trump sufficiently, the smiles from the press come, and the nods, and then the faux respect. Now they are no longer mean old Rethuglicans but dauntless heroes, at least in Georgetown, because they are willing to dance and caper to the tune of the establishment.

This tsunami of baloney isn’t aimed at us. It’s aimed at them, the Republicans who are foolish enough to believe their new friends when they whisper words like “honor” and “patriotism.” Some of the marks are real patriots who fall prey to these liars when they couch their bogus narrative in national defense terms. But the majority of the marks are just morons.

When targeting the dummies, the goal is simple. Draw off enough weak, attention-addicted RINOs to make it impossible for the President to govern. Then, hopefully, us normals will shrug, and slink away, having relearned our place. After all, we’re deplorable.

And when the liberal establishment retakes power, and the mavericks and goody-goodies get tossed aside, the bureaucracy, media and the Democrats will conspire to ensure that no one can ever take their power from them again. But they haven’t considered the consequences. We’ll object.

So we have to fight against this cable network coup. Because, if we don’t fight now, we all may end up fighting later.
205  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Twice, Comey declined to charge the Clintons on: May 19, 2017, 03:08:50 PM
Papers reveal FBI's 'public corruption' probe into Bill Clinton's pardon of fugitive Marc Rich, whose wife Denise gave $450K to his presidential library – and $100K to make Hillary a senator

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3895636/papers-FBI-s-public-corruption-probe-Bill-Clinton-s-pardon-fugitive-wife-gave-450K-build-presidential-library-100K-make-Hillary-senator.html

Bill Clinton pardoned fugitive financier Marc Rich on his last day in the White House
Rich faced an indictment for racketeering, tax evasion, wire fraud, and illegally trading oil with Iran during the 1979 hostage crisis
He was in Switzerland when a federal Grand Jury indicted him, and never came back to the U.S.
His wife gave $450,000 to build Bill's presidential library, $100,000 to Hillary's U.S. Senate campaign, and far more to other Democratic causes

The FBI released 129 pages of heavily redacted documents on Monday related to the criminal investigation of the pardon – just 7 days before Hillary's big election day
By DAVID MARTOSKO, US POLITICAL EDITOR FOR DAILYMAIL.COM
PUBLISHED: 20:17 EDT, 1 November 2016 | UPDATED: 11:03 EDT, 2 November 2016

SCANDAL: Fugitive financier Marc Rich was indicted for racketeering, fraud, tax evasion and illegal oil trading with Iran, but Bill Clinton pardoned him on his last day in the White House

The FBI on Monday released 129 pages of documents related to former president Bill Clinton's lame-duck pardon of a fugitive financier whose family contributed $450,000 to help build his presidential library and millions more to other Democratic Party causes.

Rich's wife Denise also contributed $100,000 to Hillary Clinton's 2000 Senate campaign as the first family prepared to clear out of the White House.

The disclosures will prove embarrassing to the former first family as Hillary Clinton tries to avoid a career-ending defeat next Tuesday at the hands of Donald Trump.

The FBI investigated the case of Marc Rich, who died in 2013, more than a decade ago, assigning it to the ominous sounding 'Public Corruption Unit.'

The documents released Monday leave much to the imagination, mostly redacted by government lawyers for privacy reasons and to preserve the secrecy of a federal Grand Jury.

But merely bringing the episode back up so close to Election Day has put an old Clinton black eye back on the front burner.




Rich, a legendary oil commodities and hedge-fund trader in his day, was charged with multiple counts of tax evasion, wire fraud, racketeering, and cutting petroleum deals with Iran during the 1979 hostage crisis.

Rich was in Switzerland when he was indicted, and never returned to the United States. He hired Jack Quinn, a former White House counsel to Clinton, as his lawyer.

His wife later renounced her U.S. citizenship and moved to Austria where she already had dual citizenship – saving herself tens of millions of dollars in taxes.

Rich passed away in 2013 and was laid to rest in  Tel Aviv.

Pardoning Rich on his last day in office turned out to be one of Bill Clinton's most controversial acts of president.

The FBI concluded that Clinton did not follow established procedures when he finalized the pardon, and only informed one person at the Department of Justice that Rich had sought the pardon: future Obama administration attorney general Eric Holder.

FBI director James Comey, then a federal prosecutor, ran the investigation into the Rich pardon. He criticized Holder's involvement in the controversy, calling the pardon 'a huge misjudgment.'

But he never recommended criminal charges against anyone embroiled in the scandal.




Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3895636/papers-FBI-s-public-corruption-probe-Bill-Clinton-s-pardon-fugitive-wife-gave-450K-build-presidential-library-100K-make-Hillary-senator.html
206  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Russian conspiracy, Comey, related matters on: May 19, 2017, 02:56:56 PM
Very helpful GM--  can you find the one(s) of the Obama team woman inadvertently admitting everything in a TV interview?


http://twitchy.com/gregp-3534/2017/03/29/did-former-obama-aide-evelyn-farkas-just-admit-that-trumps-staff-was-spied-on/
207  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Russian conspiracy, Comey, related matters on: May 19, 2017, 11:18:05 AM
Could someone find the citation(s) for that Team Obama woman who let the cat out of the bag about how they left landmines for Trump, and also relevant citations about Obama expanding Super Duper Top Secret stuff from a handful of people to 17 agencies?


http://pamelageller.com/2017/03/obama-loyalists-trump.html/

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2017/01/obama-expands-surveillance-powers-his-way-out
208  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / What If There's No Scandal for the FBI to Find? on: May 18, 2017, 05:51:28 PM
http://ace.mu.nu/archives/369822.php

May 18, 2017
Democrats and NeverTrumpers Worry:
What If There's No Scandal for the FBI to Find, After We've Staked What Remains of Our Credibility on Suggesting There are High Crimes in Play?
Whoops.

Bluffed called, assholes.

Eli Lake is right: The DOJ's appointment of widely-respected former prosecutor Robert Mueller to lead the special inquiry into the Trump campaign's potential collusion with Russia is a reprieve for a Trump Administration in crisis--a reprieve that it will almost certainly squander, but a reprieve nonetheless.
How do we know? Because the responses from Trump’s most dogged critics on the Russia question betray a kind of anxiety about the Mueller appointment--an anxiety that the no-nonsense law enforcement wise man will lower the temperature in Washington without actually uncovering enough damaging material to bring down the President.

Take, for example, Josh Marshall declaring that while he has confidence in Mueller to identify and expose any criminal activities undertaken by Trump or his associates, he won’t be able to prosecute the real Trump-Russia wrongdoing: a labyrinthian "conspiracy" which may not even involve any illegal behavior.

It is critical to understand that the most important details we need to know about the Russian disruption campaign and the Trump campaign’s possible collusion with it may not be crimes. Indeed, I would say that the crimes we’re likely to discover will likely be incidental or secondary to the broader actions and activities we're trying to uncover. Just hypothetically, what if Russia had a disruption campaign, Trump campaign officials gave winks and nods to nudge it forward but violated no laws? That’s hard to figure but by no means impossible. (Our criminal laws are not really designed for this set of facts.)...
And here’s David Frum in the Atlantic making a similar objection:

The special counsel will investigate whether people in the Trump campaign violated any laws when they gleefully leveraged the fruits of Russian espionage to advance their campaign.
By contrast, what happened in plain sight --cheering rather than condemning a Russian attack on American democracy--will be treated as a non-issue, because it was not criminal, merely anti-democratic and disloyal.

Since the summer before the election, Trump's critics have been suggesting or sometimes stating outright that Russia is involved with a criminal conspiracy that reaches to the highest levels of Trump’s inner circle. But now that an unimpeachable bulldog prosecutor has been named to probe these very allegations, the critics seem to be trying to move the goalposts, saying that the real problem isn't criminality, but the sleaze and outlandish behavior of the Trump campaign more generally...

Indeed. One question I keep asking -- and which I encourage people to ask of these assholes -- is this: "What specific crime, including what specific acts, are you accusing Trump of?"

Note that in Hillary's case, critics were quite specific about what crimes she had committed: She violated the Espionage Act by transferring classified information to non-authorized users. She also set up this system precisely to avoid her FOIA obligations -- repeatedly telling people there were no responsive documents, when she was deliberately not searching for such documents on the secret serve she knew they were on.

I don't know if that last one is a crime, but I can definitely make that specific description of the bad conduct I'm alleging.

What similar specifics can these assholes offer re: Trump? They keep citing "contacts" -- but it's not a crime to have a "contact" with anybody. Literally, there is no person in the world, not even Osama bin Ladin's Satan-raped ghost, that it's illegal to have a "contact" with.

They also use the very vague word "collusion" to mask the fact they have no idea what Trump and Putin "colluded" about, or how. What quid pro quo are they alleging? How was this contract formed? Who negotiated this contract?

They have no idea, because they don't even really believe such a thing happened.

If they really believed such things happened, they would specifically say "Trump Aide X, with Trump's knowledge and permission, negotiated to trade American policy Y to Russia in exchange for Russian act Z."

They don't ever say that, because this is all bullshit. They just keep talking about the non-crime "contacts" and the deliberately vague, purposefully elusive word "collusion."

209  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Flashback: Obama, Over Objections of the British, Gave Russia the Serial Numbers on: May 18, 2017, 04:34:07 PM
http://ace.mu.nu/archives/369818.php

May 18, 2017
Flashback: Obama, Over Objections of the British, Gave Russia the Serial Numbers of the Trident Nuclear Missiles We Sold to the UK, Confirming the Size of the UK Nuclear Arsenal
—Ace

But that's okay, because Obama was The Prince Who Was Promised.

But where were these Democratic and left-wing Krakatoas [Ponuru uses "volcanoes" as a metaphor for Democrats suddenly erupting with natsec Concern -- ace ] when Obama gave Putin the identity and whereabouts of Great Britain's nuclear missiles?
The Telegraph of London cited U.S. Embassy cables that it received via Wikileaks and summarized in its February 4, 2011, edition. "A series of classified messages sent to Washington by US negotiators show how information on Britain’s nuclear capability was crucial to securing Russia’s support for the 'New START' deal," Matthew Moore, Gordon Rayner, and Christopher Hope wrote.

According to their report on the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), "the leaked cables show that Russia used the talks to demand more information about the UK's Trident missiles, which are manufactured and maintained in the US."

The authors continued:

Washington lobbied London in 2009 for permission to supply Moscow with detailed data about the performance of UK missiles. The UK refused, but the US agreed to hand over the serial numbers of Trident missiles it transfers to Britain.
"This appears to be significant because while the UK has announced how many missiles it possesses, there has been no way for the Russians to verify this," Professor Malcolm Chalmers of the Royal United Services Institute told The Telegraph. "Over time, the unique identifiers will provide them with another data point to gauge the size of the British arsenal."

Obama's treaty was amazingly cold as it back-stabbed America's cousins, from the Scottish Highlands to the white cliffs of Dover. The secret U.S. cable originated in "Mission Geneva." Dated February 25, 2010, it summarizes a meeting that had occurred on February 9 between American and Russian arms negotiators, including decisions on submarine-launched ballistic missiles. Item No. 13 detailed "An agreed statement on the transfer of Tridents II SLBMs to the United Kingdom."

The Parties agree that, in order to increase transparency in relation to the use of "Trident-II" SLBMs, transferred by the United States of America to equip the Navy of Great Britain, the United States of America shall provide notification to the Russian Federation about the time of such transfer, as well as the unique identifier and the location of each of the transferred missiles.
Wait -- the location of the hidden missiles?

You may be hearing of this for the first time (I am myself), and that's because the media didn't report it.
210  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Why is it always Democrats scheming to commit vote fraud? on: May 18, 2017, 01:54:56 PM
https://pjmedia.com/trending/2017/05/17/dallas-county-whistleblower-tapes-democrat-campaign-worker-describing-voter-fraud-schemes/

Dallas County Whistleblower Tapes Democrat Campaign Worker Describing Voter Fraud Schemes

Because they haven't yet managed to dissolve the current American population.
211  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Former Bush AG On Comey’s 2007 Brush With Scandal: ‘Jim’s Loyalty Was More To C on: May 18, 2017, 09:24:53 AM
http://thefederalist.com/2017/05/17/former-attorney-general-on-comeys-integrity-jims-loyalty-was-more-to-chuck-schumer/

Former Bush AG On Comey’s 2007 Brush With Scandal: ‘Jim’s Loyalty Was More To Chuck Schumer’
This isn't the first time James Comey placed himself at the center of a partisan attempt to oust a top Republican. He did the same thing in 2007.
Sean Davis By Sean Davis
MAY 17, 2017
The revelation by fired former Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) director James Comey’s close friends that he has kept meticulous records detailing President Donald Trump’s alleged attempts to improperly influence an ongoing FBI investigation has sent Washington into a tailspin. Did Trump really threaten a sitting FBI director in a private meeting? Did the former FBI director accurately record what happened? Could this be the beginning of the end of Trump?

At the moment, untangling fact from fiction is difficult, given that the event Comey allegedly describes took place only between Comey and the president. With no ability at this time to independently verify either man’s account, we are instead left with a he-said/he-said explanation of events, which means the credibility of the two men involved becomes the prime determinant of one’s view of the situation.

The narrative from the Acela corridor media establishment is that Trump is a known liar and Comey is a honest public servant above reproach, so clearly Comey’s word must be believed, the total absence of any other corroborating evidence notwithstanding. An examination of Comey’s history as the consummate Beltway operator, however, raises questions about whether the towering former U.S. attorney, deputy attorney general, and FBI director is as open and forthright as his allies would have you believe.

In fact, the current episode is not the first time Comey and his associates plotted to oust a sitting Republican official through highly orchestrated political theater and carefully crafted narratives in which Comey is the courageous hero bravely fighting to preserve the rule of law. To understand how Comey came to be FBI director in the first place, and how he operates in the political arena, it is important to review the last scandal in which Comey had a front-row seat: the 2007 U.S. attorney firings and the fight over the 2004 reauthorization of Stellar Wind, a mass National Security Agency (NSA) surveillance program designed to mitigate terrorist threats in the wake of the 9/11 attacks.

The pivotal scene in the Comey-crafted narrative, a drama that made Comey famous and likely paved the road to his 2013 appointment by President Barack Obama to run the FBI, occurred in a Beltway hospital room in early 2004. In Comey’s view, Comey was the last honest man in Washington, the only person standing between a White House that rejected any restraints on its power, and the rule of law protecting Americans from illegal mass surveillance.

A former White House counsel and attorney general with extensive first-hand experience dealing with Comey, however, paints a very different picture of what happened in that hospital room, and disputes numerous key details. In this account, Comey’s actions showcase a duplicitous, secretive schemer whose true loyalties were not to the officials to whom he reported, but to partisan Democrats like Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). To fully understand and appreciate Jim Comey’s approach to politics, the writings and testimony of Alberto Gonzales, who served as both White House counsel and attorney general during the events in question and is intimately aware of Comey’s history of political maneuvering, is absolutely essential.

Gonzales’s descriptions of his interactions with Comey, included in his 2016 book “True Faith And Allegiance,” are detailed and extensive. While his tone is measured, the language he uses to describe Comey’s actions in 2004 and 2007 leaves little doubt about the former top Bush official’s views on Comey’s character. Gonzales’s opinion is clearly colored by the fact that Comey cravenly used him to jumpstart his own political career by going public with surprise (and questionable) testimony that Gonzales had attempted to take advantage of a deathly ill man in order to ram through authorization of an illegal surveillance program.

Bush’s Attorney General John Ashcroft had taken ill and was in the hospital at a pivotal time. The legal authorization of a surveillance program meant to find and root out terrorist threats was days from expiring. What happened in Ashcroft’s hospital room in March of 2004 later became political fodder for a hearing in which Senate Democrats used Comey to dredge up the 2004 hospital meeting to tar Gonzales’ credibility and suggest he was unfit to continue serving as attorney general. As the 2004 and 2007 sagas show, Comey is clearly no stranger to using the unarguably legal dismissal of government employees as the backdrop for casting himself as the story’s protaganist standing up to the forces of corruption.

told my security detail that I needed to get to George Washington Hospital immediately. They turned on the emergency equipment and drove very quickly to the hospital,” Comey testified. “I got out of the car and ran up — literally ran up the stairs with my security detail.”

“I was concerned that, given how ill I knew the attorney general was, that there might be an effort to ask him to overrule me when he was in no condition to do that,” Comey said.

Comey’s use of the phrase “overrule me” is especially noteworthy, given that the authority he referenced belongs not to the deputy attorney general, but to the attorney general himself. However, unbeknownst to anyone at the White House on that day, Comey had assumed for himself the authorities attendant to Ashcroft’s position. Rather than personally informing anyone at the White House, including the president, the vice president, the White House chief of staff, or the White House counsel, the Department of Justice sent a mere fax to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue noting the change in power. For some reason, the newly designated acting attorney general didn’t feel compelled to personally inform any of his superiors that he was now a cabinet official.

It’s at this point in the narrative that Comey’s testimony took a turn for the dramatic:

I sat down in an armchair by the head of the attorney general’s bed. The two other Justice Department people stood behind me. And Mrs. Ashcroft stood by the bed holding her husband’s arm. And we waited.

And it was only a matter of minutes that the door opened and in walked Mr. Gonzales, carrying an envelope, and Mr. Card. They came over and stood by the bed. They greeted the attorney general very briefly. And then Mr. Gonzales began to discuss why they were there — to seek his approval for a matter, and explained what the matter was — which I will not do.

And Attorney General Ashcroft then stunned me. He lifted his head off the pillow and in very strong terms expressed his view of the matter, rich in both substance and fact, which stunned me — drawn from the hour-long meeting we’d had a week earlier — and in very strong terms expressed himself, and then laid his head back down on the pillow, seemed spent, and said to them, ‘But that doesn’t matter, because I’m not the attorney general.’

[…]

And as he laid back down, he said, ‘But that doesn’t matter, because I’m not the attorney general. There is the attorney general,’ and he pointed to me, and I was just to his left. The two men did not acknowledge me. They turned and walked from the room. And within just a few moments after that, Director Mueller arrived. I told him quickly what had happened. He had a brief — a memorable brief exchange with the attorney general and then we went outside in the hallway.
Gonzales was taken aback by Comey’s appearance and testimony. It turns out that was by design. Comey kept secret his pre-hearing planning with Schumer and his staff to maximize the fallout of the bomb he planned to drop on Gonzales and the Bush administration. In a significant breach of protocol, Comey also refused to share with the White House or the Department of Justice that he had planned to testify about his work at DOJ, a move which made it impossible for the White House to consider whether it needed to assert executive privilege over portions of Comey’s planned testimony.

As fate would have it, the Schumer staffer who spearheaded the entire spectacle was none other than Preet Bharara, a former employee of Comey’s in the U.S. attorney’s office in New York. Bharara, like Comey, was fired by President Donald Trump earlier this year. And Bharara, like Comey, owes his most recent position of authority in the U.S. government to Schumer and President Barack Obama.

“When I found out from our DOJ legislative liaison that Comey was testifying, I was surprised,” Gonzales wrote after noting that Comey hadn’t worked at DOJ for years when the U.S. attorneys were fired. “It was also odd that we had received no notice at DOJ regarding the appearance of one of the former members of our leadership team at a Senate hearing.”

“I called the White House counsel Fred Fielding, and Fred confirmed that he had no prior notice of Comey’s testimony either,” Gonzales continued. “I was disappointed that the man who had been given so much in his legal career — appointed by President Bush as a U.S. attorney and then as deputy attorney general — did not even notify the White House or me in advance of his testimony.”

“It felt to me that Jim’s loyalty was more to his friend Preet Bharara and to Chuck Schumer,” he wrote.

Gonzales also questioned whether Bharara’s role in ambushing the previous Republican presidential administration was the reason Obama later appointed Bharara to Comey’s old job as U.S. attorney for the southern district of New York.

Comey’s 2007 testimony went off just as he, Bharara, and Schumer planned. It was shocking and dramatic. Comey weaved a tale that involved him being notified at the last possible second that Bush’s chief of staff and counsel planned to ambush Ashcroft in his hospital bed and force him against his will to sign a legal document authorizing an ongoing mass surveillance program that Comey and his deputy, Jack Goldsmith, had very recently decided was illegal despite multiple DOJ and National Security Agency legal opinions to the contrary. According to Gonzales, despite having been on the job for months, Comey and Goldsmith didn’t disclose their concerns to the White House counsel about the legality of the surveillance initiative until March 6, just five days before the program’s authorization expired.

The narrative Comey provided to the Senate Judiciary Committee was riveting. But according to Gonzales, it didn’t actually happen.
The narrative Comey provided to the Senate Judiciary Committee was riveting. But according to Gonzales, it didn’t actually happen the way it was presented. And the conflicting details between Comey’s and Gonzales’ account, given Comey’s current attempts to use his credibility and recollection of events witnessed only by himself to take down a Republican official, raise significant questions about the trustworthiness of Comey’s current claims.

According to Gonzales, rather than sitting directly next to Ashcroft, Comey and his two deputies, Goldsmith and Pat Philbin, never made their presence known, and neither Gonzales nor Andy Card, Bush’s chief of staff, had any clue they were there during the 10-minute meeting. To the contrary, Gonzales noted in his book that he assumed the small handful of people in the hiding in the periphery of a darkened room were actually Ashcroft’s security detail doing their best to stay out of the way.

More important, in Gonzales’ telling, Ashcroft never even mentioned Comey, let alone pointed him out to Gonzales as being physically present in the room.

“I was told this morning that I’m no longer attorney general,” Gonzales wrote was Ashcroft’s response to a request to re-authorize the Stellar Wind program, a far cry from the forceful declaration Comey attributed to Ashcroft.

“Certainly, had the vice president, Andy, or I known about the matter, we would have informed the president, and he could have simply summoned the deputy attorney general,” Gonzales wrote. “But none of us knew until John Ashcroft announced the news to us in his hospital room.”

President George W. Bush himself, in his book “Decision Points,” expressed his feeling of shock when he found out that Comey had seized the attorney general’s authority in March of 2004.

It’s unclear why Comey did not feel compelled to inform the president of the United States, his superior, that he had assumed for himself the powers of the office of attorney general.
“I was stunned,” Bush wrote. “Nobody had told me that Comey, John Ashcroft’s deputy, had taken over Ashcroft’s responsibilities when he went in for surgery. If I had known that, I never would have sent Andy and Al to John’s hospital room.”

To date, it’s unclear why Comey did not feel compelled to inform the president of the United States, his superior, that he had assumed for himself the powers of the office of attorney general. Gonzales minced no words in his characterization of the hero narrative Comey wove before the Senate Judiciary Committee in 2007.

“The details later presented by Jim Comey, and facilitated by Senator Schumer’s staffer, Preet Bharara, describing flashing lights, sirens, and dashing up the hospital staircases may or may not be technically true, but they certainly do not depict what happened later in that hospital room,” Gonzales wrote. “Contrary to Hollywood-style myth, there simply was no confrontation.”

Gonzales even pointedly questioned the Comey narrative that Ashcroft’s health status had made it impossible for him to continue his duties.

“[Card and I] both agreed that Ashcroft had been competent and understood the intricacies of the disputed surveillance matter. He seemed to have been well briefed by [Comey], Goldsmith, and Philbin,” Gonzales wrote. “In an ironic twist, it is possible some or all of those briefings occurred while the attorney general was hospitalized and in a weakened condition, thus raising the question of whether his subordinates had taken advantage of him.”

This cynicism is not unwarranted, given that according to Comey’s own testimony, Ashcroft allegedly addressed Card and Gonzales in the hospital room with language that was “rich in both substance and fact…drawn from the hour-long meeting we’d had a week earlier.” If Ashcroft had such detailed command of facts he had only briefly discussed the previous week, then what exactly was the rationale for Comey continuing to assert the powers of Ashcroft’s position? Comey’s recollection of that conversation reveals an attempt to have it both ways: there was no choice but to designate Comey as acting attorney given Ashcroft’s medical state, and yet Ashcroft was competent enough to slap down Card and Gonzales in exquisite and detailed fashion. Which was it?

Gonzales’s belief, expressed in the book, that Comey and Bharara colluded in secret with Schumer in an attempt to take down a top Bush administration official is no unsupported conspiracy theory, as Bharara himself confirmed Gonzales’s suspicions about Comey’s scheme in a 2016 interview with The New Yorker‘s Jeffrey Toobin:

As Bharara recalled, ‘Jim told me the whole story on the phone, and the hair stood up on the back of my neck, because I realized what a significant story this was, and I was sworn to secrecy and nobody knew about it. I told Chuck. He was, like, ‘Whoa!’ ” In the days leading up to the hearing, Bharara and Schumer told no one about the revelation that was coming. ‘I was afraid that if the story got out of what Jim was going to say the Bush Administration would figure out a way to prevent him from testifying,’ Bharara said. ‘We needed to preserve the element of surprise.’
That Bharara, a Senate staffer for Schumer, would plot with Comey to oust a top Republican official is no real surprise. After all, Bharara owes his federal prosecutor career to Comey, for whom Bharara worked when Comey was a U.S. attorney, and to Schumer, who recommended to Obama that Bharara be appointed as the top federal prosecutor in New York. Both men owed their fame and near-universal adoration by the Washington-New York media in the late 2000’s to the political theater they orchestrated at Gonzales’s expense.

This brings us back to 2017 and an emerging drama in which Comey and his former employees Bharara and Goldsmith are once again key actors. This clearly isn’t their first rodeo, nor the first time they have worked together to present a public narrative in which Comey plays the role of the last honest man who just wants to figure out if Col. Jessup ordered the Code Red.

This clearly isn’t their first rodeo, nor the first time they have worked together to present a public narrative in which Comey plays the role of the last honest man.
Is it possible that everything they and their friends are alleging about Comey and Trump is true? Absolutely. Everything they and their associates are anonymously providing to journalists eager to promote their narrative could be true, especially given Trump’s tendency to rhetorically shoot from the hip.

But given Comey’s history of secretly colluding with Democratic officials to craft a disputed narrative that makes everyone but himself look awful in order to oust a top Republican who didn’t sufficiently kowtow to Comey, there’s little reason to assume events transpired exactly the way Comey and his friends allege, especially given that both Comey and Bharara have rather obvious axes to grind on the matter. After all, Trump is the reason neither of them currently has a job. In light of Comey’s history of twisting private conversations and events, it’s probably a good idea to take anonymous leaks from him and his friends with a grain of salt.

“Over the years, various commentators and politicians have picked up on Comey’s remark to the president [about Bush’s staff knowing about Stellar Wind’s legal problems for weeks] and expanded it to say that President Bush’s staff knew of the specific surveillance problem for months before broaching it with the president,” Gonzales wrote in his book. “That is absolutely false, and the implication that the president was ill served by individuals attempting to keep information from him about a highly sensitive matter is also disingenuous.”

Sound familiar?

Now, Gonzales has publicly raised questions about the timing and rationale of Trump’s firing of Comey and stated the American people deserve a full account of what happened. And the former attorney general has thus far stayed out of the media fray regarding the latest alleged revelations about Comey and Trump.

So Comey could be telling the truth. Or he could be disingenuously characterizing private conversations with the president to get revenge against a higher-ranking official who got in Jim Comey’s way. It wouldn’t be the first time. Just ask Alberto Gonzales.

Sean Davis is the co-founder of The Federalist.
212  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Michael Yon on: May 18, 2017, 09:23:01 AM
Any discussion of Japan must include the subject of demographics.  That the birth rate falls FAR short of the replacement rate has profound implications.  The median age of the Japanese population is rising rapidly.  Among other things this means that the ratio of workers to retirees is falling.  Is this sustainable?  Or does the implied push to ever higher tax rates stifle the Japanese economy as its export driven model is increasingly challenged by anti-globalist winds?

Japan is on the path to becoming the first all robot nation.
213  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Legalized marijuana turns Colorado resort town into homeless magnet on: May 17, 2017, 08:54:09 PM
http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/05/17/legalized-marijuana-turns-colorado-resort-town-into-homeless-magnet.html

Legalized marijuana turns Colorado resort town into homeless magnet
By Joseph J. Kolb Published May 17, 2017 Fox News
 
From his sidewalk vantage point in front of an outdoor equipment store in downtown Durango, Colo., Matthew Marinseck has seen a transformation in this mountain resort town.

The picturesque town near the New Mexico border, once a vibrant, upscale community dotted with luxury hotels, is being overrun by panhandlers – thanks, in part, to the legalization of marijuana.

The town suddenly became a haven for recreational pot users, drawing in transients, panhandlers and a large number of homeless drug addicts, according to officials and business owners. Many are coming from New Mexico, Arizona and even New York.

“Legalized marijuana has drawn a lot of kids here from other states and the impact has not all been good,” said Marinseck, 58, while holding a cardboard sign asking for “help.”


Several people holding cardboard signs could be seen along the streets of Durango now. Some just ask for marijuana, or imply that’s what they want with a photo of a green pot leaf. But it’s not just pot users being drawn to Durango.

“[The] city really started freaking out when they started seeing needles in the streets” said Marinseck, a self-avowed former hippie.

Caleb Preston, a store manager in a gift shop and a former “street entertainer,” said the homeless and panhandling issue in Durango has gotten out of hand since the state legalized marijuana.

“Just this year there has been a major influx of people between 20 to 30 who are just hanging out on the streets,” Preston said. “The problem is while many are pretty mellow, there are many more who are violent.”

Preston said he’s become accustomed to kicking out vagrants who perch themselves in front of his store.


“Most of the kids here are from out of state, and I would say it has a lot to do with the legalized pot,” said Preston.

He said he’s also noticed an uptick in crime in the area. Shoplifting, he said, has become a major problem in Durango and business owners are becoming fed up.

The city’s Business Improvement District held a meeting May 12 to review the results of a survey completed by local businesses on how to address the panhandling issue, which has become an urgent matter as the city enters its busy summer tourist season.

Among the suggestions were stricter laws for panhandling and loitering, strategic placement of obstacles such as bistro tables and flower boxes to discourage sitting and lying on sidewalks. They also proposed launching a campaign discouraging tourists to give money to the pan handlers. A rudimentary effort is already in place with handwritten signs encouraging donations be made to charities that help the homeless rather than handing panhandlers’ money directly.

Related Image
durango pot charityExpand / Collapse
A hand-scrawled sign asking people to donate to homeless groups rather than to panhandlers directly.  (Joe Kolb/Fox News)
Tim Walsworth, executive director of Durango Business Improvement District, said he is frustrated. He said he has to walk a tightrope between the civil liberties of the homeless population and the reputation and attractiveness of the downtown area, which for years has been a hot tourist destination.

“We’re hoping to discourage the transient and professional panhandlers that are impacting the perceived safety and cleanliness of our downtown, as well as help those who are truly in need,” Walsworth said in a statement.

Conspicuously absent from the busy downtown: The presence of police patrols.

Durango Police Chief Kamran Afzal said he has only been on the job for a month and is still assessing where the needs are in the town. With a department of 50 officers and only five per shift who cover 20 square miles, the challenge is daunting, he said. He said the property crime rate is 12 percent higher than the national average.

FEDERAL CRACKDOWN ON LEGAL WEED COMING?

“At this point, since I’m new here, I can’t definitively say this number is related to our homeless population,” Afzal said.

But he would not go so far as to say that the rise in panhandlers is directly attributed to the legalization of marijuana.

Related Image
durango pot business districtExpand / Collapse
Durango, Colo. is a vibrant, mountain resort town.  (Joe Kolb/Fox News)
“We are going to look at the behavior of individuals who cause discomfort for residents and visitors,” he said, through a Community Engagement Team. But, he said, the tricky part is figuring out when panhandlers cross the line to criminals.

Panhandlers like Marinseck may not exactly pose a threat to pedestrians shopping at the boutiques, souvenir stores or microbreweries in downtown Durango. But they don’t exactly evoke the wholesome image the business district wants to project.

Still, the city recently settled a lawsuit with the American Civil Liberties Union allowing the homeless population to panhandle.

A clerk at a local hotel who declined to give her name told Fox News that since marijuana has become legal in Colorado, the quality of life in Durango has worsened.

She said she’s frequently harassed when she goes to the supermarket or local WalMart. Some of the local parks, she said, have been taken over by the homeless.

“I’ve lived here my entire life and don’t feel safe here anymore,” the clerk said. “If it wasn’t so beautiful here, I would probably move.”


Joseph J. Kolb is a regular contributor to Fox News.
214  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Cyberwar and the crash potential on: May 17, 2017, 10:46:04 AM
http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/cyber-wars-crash-markets-threat-humanity-rickards-buffett/
215  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Russian conspiracy, Comey, related matters on: May 17, 2017, 09:04:49 AM

"YES.  For example, if I have it right, the unsourced allegation that AAG Rowenstein threatened to resign has been contradicted by Rowenstein himself.  The unsourced allegation that Comey got fired after asking for more money to expand the investigation seems to have disappeared into the cyber ether as well."

It's all just endless attacks meant to churn emotions and spook the cattle.
216  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The war of the two Americas on: May 17, 2017, 08:51:48 AM
http://www.frontpagemag.com/sites/default/files/uploads/2017/05/the_war_of_two_americas.pdf

We are watching it happen in front of our eyes.
217  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / If Hillary were president... on: May 17, 2017, 08:37:45 AM
218  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Guests Remind NBC, CNN: Obama Gave Classified Intel to Russia on: May 17, 2017, 08:12:46 AM
http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/kyle-drennen/2017/05/16/guests-remind-nbc-cnn-obama-gave-classified-intel-russia

Guests Remind NBC, CNN: Obama Gave Classified Intel to Russia
By Kyle Drennen | May 16, 2017 | 12:39 PM EDT

 
While NBC and CNN joined the rest of the media in rushing to condemn the Trump White House over an unconfirmed Washington Post report that the President inadvertently shared classified information with Russian officials, guests on both networks provided important context that the Obama administration intentionally shared classified intelligence with Russia less than a year ago.

Appearing on Friday’s NBC Today, security analyst Juan Zarate warned: “The problem is the Russians aren’t trustworthy. The Russians have proven that when we’ve provided information in the past, they’ve used it against us.” He then proceeded to explain how former President Obama gave the Russians classified information just months ago:


Back in the summer of 2016, the Obama administration provided some information to the Russians about some of the things happening on the ground. Guess what happened? The Russians then attacked some of those sites of our allies, our proxies that we were working with. And that’s a problem.


Meanwhile, over on CNN’s New Day, political analyst Jeffrey Lord provided some “perspective” to anchor Chris Cuomo:

The only thing I would say here, Chris is perspective. Perspective is all. I'm holding two headlines from the Washington Post, one of May 25th, 2014, “White House mistakenly identifies CIA chief in Afghanistan.” The Obama administration put the name of the CIA on the press release, exposed him and endangered his life. The second one, June 30, 2016, “U.S. Offers to share Syrian intelligence on terrorist with Russia,” which is to say the Obama administration wanted to give their intelligence to the Russians. All I'm saying here is there’s perspective. We need to find out the facts and let’s have perspective.

Incidentally, notice that the 2014 story was from the same Post reporter, Greg Miller, who wrote Monday's article.

In sharp contrast to the wall-to-wall media coverage of the Trump story, Obama offering to share intel with Russia was greeted with yawns from the press.

Here are excerpts of the May 16 exchanges on NBC and CNN:

Today
7:10 AM ET

(...)

MATT LAUER: Can you just clarify something? This concerns an ISIS plot. The Russians are supposed to be our partners in fighting ISIS. So explain why sharing of information with them is so dangerous.

JUAN ZARATE: Well, two reasons. First of all, I think the President may think that he’s trying to create some degree of trust, maybe trying to create some cooperation on the ground. That may be in the back of his mind. The problem is the Russians aren’t trustworthy. The Russians have proven that when we’ve provided information in the past, they’ve used it against us.

Back in the summer of 2016, the Obama administration provided some information to the Russians about some of the things happening on the ground. Guess what happened? The Russians then attacked some of those sites of our allies, our proxies that we were working with. And that’s a problem.

And I think part of the challenge here is, how much can we trust the Russians? What you’re seeing here is a deficit of trust, a deficit of discipline, I think, on the part of the President.

(...)


New Day
6:34 AM ET

CHRIS CUOMO: All right. This latest self-imposed and perhaps most egregious error by the president is sparking all kinds of questions about competence, was his inability to protect highly classified information with Russian diplomats a sign that he's not up to the job. There's a New York Times op-ed you should read for your self from David Brooks. The headline is this, when the world is led by a child. It says, quote, “From all we know so far, Trump didn't do it,” talking about the classified information, “because he's a Russian agent or from any malevolent intent. He did it because he is sloppy, because he lacks all impulse control, and above all because he is a 7-year-old boy desperate for the approval of those he admires.” Let’s discuss Jeffrey Lord, former commentator and White House official and David from senior editor at the Atlantic. Jeffrey, I'm sure you have a robust defense for why this is a nor his criticism of the president is unwarranted so give it to us.

JEFFERY LORD: Okay. The only thing I would say here, Chris is perspective. Perspective is all. I'm holding two headlines from the Washington Post, one of May 25th, 2014, “White House mistakenly identifies CIA chief in Afghanistan.” The Obama administration put the name of the CIA on the press release, exposed him and endangered his life. The second one, June 30, 2016, "U.S. Offers to share Syrian intelligence on terrorist with Russia," which is to say the Obama administration wanted to give their intelligence to the Russians. All I'm saying here is there's perspective. We need to find out the facts and let's have perspective. With all respect to David Brooks he's a never-Trumper. That's fine. But from that perspective, Donald Trump isn't going to do anything David Brooks likes. As I remember famously with David Brooks, he was certain Senator Obama would be a great president because of the crease in his slacks. I mean, with all due respect --

CUOMO: That was a rhetorical flourish from Brooks but let's put that to the side, you've made your point.

(...)                   
219  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Russian conspiracy, Comey, related matters on: May 16, 2017, 06:02:23 PM
"Donald, you stupid fk!"

If true then drain the swamp indeed.  What to bring in a new one?   cry angry

Way to hand a cudgel to the other side. Brilliant!
220  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Here’s How Facebook Knows Who You Meet In Real Life on: May 16, 2017, 03:34:37 PM
http://www.vocativ.com/425482/facebook-tracking-friend-requests/

Here’s How Facebook Knows Who You Meet In Real Life
It may seem like Mark Zuckerburg is personally tracking your every move — but there's another explanation for those creepy friend requests you're getting
Social Media
Photo Illustration: Diana Quach
By Alejandro Alba
May 16, 2017 at 12:15 PM ET

A couple months ago a friend and I went to Colombia for vacation. While we were at the beach one day, we met a group of people and spent several hours hanging out with them. We never exchanged phone numbers or email addresses, we didn’t share much information about ourselves other than our names and where we lived, and we didn’t connect on social media. I didn’t even have my phone on me at the time. However, when I got back to New York and checked Facebook, I saw that two of the people we met popped up in my “People You May Know” recommendations. Weird, I thought. Actually, it’s creepy. Is Facebook tracking my every step?

Facebook’s brand is based on the community it creates, and its mission is to connect everybody in the world. So it only makes sense that the platform frequently suggests new friends for users to add to their networks. But in the past, the company’s suggestions for connecting users have raised some eyebrows.

For example, take the story about a psychiatrist who claimed her patients were popping up on her list of suggested friends (and on each other’s lists) after visiting her office, which is obviously problematic for medical privacy reasons. The psychiatrist is far from the only Facebook user to discover mysterious friend suggestions — for years there have been stories of people who go on dates, attend parties or browse through a book store only to see people they interacted with in person pop up in their Facebook at a later date. None of these connections are coincidences, of course. So how does it happen?

Just how the company goes about identifying potential new connections — especially when the users have no obvious digital connection to one another — isn’t always clear. The first possible reason, and most likely, for someone to appear in your “People You May Know” list is that one of you searched for the other, according to Facebook. So if Angel and Angie (two random strangers) go on a blind date and Angel searches Facebook for Angie’s profile, but doesn’t add her as a friend, Facebook will suggest both add each other. It only takes one person to trigger the algorithm.



Another possible explanation is that the two parties shared some type of digital information such as email or phone numbers, since most people use either to open a profile. So if you share your contacts with either Facebook or Messenger, someone you recently added to your contacts will be suggested first over someone you’ve had on your phone for years.

A Facebook spokesperson said the company does not see who users text, call or email, therefore the algorithm wouldn’t be able to make friend suggestions based on that. Yet, if you’re using email programs on your phone such as Gmail, you are saving email addresses to your phone and Facebook will be able to see them — again, only if you’re sharing your contacts with Facebook apps.

There is also a theory that Facebook tracks users’ web activity, but in a statement Facebook debunked it. Facebook apps use web cookies for targeting ads, but not for recommending new friends, a spokesperson said. Facebook also claims it no longer tracks its users with location data to rank friend suggestions based on where they live or work. The company said location tracking was just a brief test it ran last year at a very small city-wide scale.



Facebook said that its friend recommendations are based on variety of factors, which includes mutual friends, work and education information, groups you’re part of, and any digital information stored on your phone that is shared with Facebook. Other than that, Facebook deems all other connections coincidences.

Other social media platforms such as Twitter and Tumblr aren’t usually scrutinized about follow suggestions because they seem to be based on interests and mutual friends, rather than just random people you’ve met literally 10 minutes ago. Facebook, however, is not the only platform that has received criticism for the questionable ways it suggests new contacts. LinkedIn recently had to issue an apology because it pushed a new update that told iPhone users it would turn on their Bluetooth in order to share data with people nearby and “connect” them even when not using the app, if they didn’t opt out.

The update has since been “fixed” and LinkedIn apologized for confusing users, since the language used in the update did not specify which data was being shared and under what conditions. If all of this still seems freaky to you, shutting off Facebook’s access to your contacts is quite easy. All you have to do is go into your smartphone’s settings, look for your apps section, tap on Facebook and disable the “Contacts” access.



Experts also recommend that people disable Facebook from using location data, which can also be toggled under the same Settings menu. Another piece of advice for those who are concerned with privacy is logging off from Facebook whenever going to medical offices, big events, or even theme parks like Disney Land. But perhaps the most failsafe approach is just to uninstall the Facebook app from your phone and wait to see all your notifications from your desktop computer when you get home.
221  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel did it? on: May 16, 2017, 01:03:41 PM
We're looking for intel leaks right now, not just fibbing.

================
 shocked shocked shocked
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/16/world/middleeast/israel-trump-classified-intelligence-russia.html?emc=edit_na_20170516&nl=breaking-news&nlid=49641193&ref=cta&_r=0

Either this is a spectacular case of people not being able to keep their mouths shut, or the Israeli's are saving Donald's ass/covering for some Arab agency.

The NYT and unnamed sources have the same credibility as Prisonplanet.com IMHO.

222  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Obama 'Put a Target on Their Backs', SEAL Team 6 Family Members Say on: May 16, 2017, 11:45:56 AM
https://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2013/05/09/obama-put-a-target-on-their-backs-seal-team-6-family-members-say

Obama 'Put a Target on Their Backs', SEAL Team 6 Family Members Say
Family members question SEAL Team 6's most deadly incident.

By Paul D. Shinkman, Senior National Security Writer | May 9, 2013, at 2:22 p.m.
MORE
 
Obama 'Put a Target on Their Backs', SEAL Team 6 Family Members Say
      

(AP PHOTOS)
The families of some of the 17 SEAL Team 6 commandos who were killed in an ambush in Afghanistan during a helicopter flight to help Army Rangers pinned down by Taliban gunmen accused the Obama administration of deliberately endangering their loved ones for political ends.

[PHOTOS: America's Elite Navy SEALs]

During a press conference on Washington Thursday, family and advocates for the fallen troops called into question the rules of engagement that they say prohibited their sons from being able to return fire, and the White House's decision to announce shortly after the killing of Osama bin Laden that SEAL Team 6 was responsible for the raid.

"In releasing their identity, they put a target on their backs," said Doug Hamburger, whose son, Army Staff Sgt. Patrick Hamburger, served among the helicopter's crew.

The event was organized by Freedom Watch, a conservative advocacy group, at the National Press Club. One by one, fathers and mothers of the victims of the crash spoke about what they see as gaping holes or inconsistencies in the review of what U.S. Special Operations considers its most deadly incident.

In all, 17 members of the SEAL Team 6 counterterrorist force were on board the CH-47 Chinook transport helicopter, along with its Army National Guard aircrew, several support personnel and seven Afghan commandos. In all 38 troops died after the helicopter was shot down by what a review determined to be a Taliban RPG over Wardak Province, Afghanistan, on Aug. 6, 2011.


 

The team was responding to an Army Ranger unit that was engaged in a protracted firefight with Taliban fighters and needed reinforcements.

The families hope to raise awareness of the incident, which they say the government has largely forgotten since the official report was released in October 2011.

Some congressional lawmakers demonstrated their support for the group, including former Florida Republican Rep. Allan West -- an Iraq war vet -- and Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.

[PHOTOS: Killing Osama bin Laden]

While the press conference was long on speculation and short on concrete evidence, the family members and their supporters didn't pull any punches.

Retired Army Lt. Gen. William Boykin, who served as deputy undersecretary of defense for Intelligence and was a commander in the Army's super-secret "Delta Force," denounced politicized rules of engagement as a "deliberate plot" within the American armed forces that he says puts political correctness above the safety of the troops.

"We've allowed politics to become more important than the lives and safety of those men and women," he says.

Petty Officer 1st Class Aaron Vaughn was one of the SEAL Team 6 operators who died in the crash. His father Billy Vaughn recounted Thursday a phone call from his son following the White House decision to credit the highly secretive military unit for the bin Laden raid.

"He said, 'Mom, there's chatter. My life is in danger. Your life is in danger. Get everything off your social media. Our families are in danger,' " Vaughn recalled.

[PHOTOS: Fighting in Afghanistan Continues]

Aaron Vaughn's mother, Karen, also demanded an explanation for why her son and his team were not using a special operations aircraft, such as the Chinooks flown by special operations pilots, which have specialized defenses designed to fly commandos deep behind enemy lines. The CH-47D that embarked on the mission that day had been built in the 1960s, she said, and last retrofitted in the 1985.

It is not uncommon for commandos to fly some of their missions aboard such aircraft in the war zone, however.

She also said the team was hindered by rules of engagement that prohibited their firing on potential targets unless they could see a weapon. Military officials told her operating outside of these rules "damages our efforts to win the hearts and minds of our enemies."

"The hearts and minds of our enemy are more valuable to our government than my son's blood," she said. "We have an ideology problem with this war, and we need to address it."
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/aug/5/obama-stonewalls-seal-team-6-extortion-17-helicopt/

Obama stonewalls SEAL Team 6 helicopter crash probe, watchdog says

Petty Officer First Class Ian Regnier (above left) carries the remains of Petty Officer 1st Class Michael Joseph Strange, a cryptology technician, killed alongside members of SEAL Team 6 when their helicopter was shot down by a rocket-propelled grenade in Afghanistan in 2011 (bottom). The families of Strange and the other victims are demanding the White House release documents relevant to the incident. (Associated Press)

By Rowan Scarborough - The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 5, 2015

The Obama administration is violating a judge’s order to turn over documents in the Aug. 6, 2011, shootdown of a U.S. helicopter — call sign Extortion 17 — that killed members of SEAL Team 6 in Afghanistan, a watchdog group is charging.
On the fourth anniversary of the worst one-day loss of military life in the war on terror, families of the dead say they are aghast that the government will not honor basic requests under the Freedom of Information Act.
“It has now been four years since Extortion 17 was shot down,” said Doug Hamburger, whose Army air crew son, Patrick, was one of the 30 Americans killed. “I find it quite disturbing that the government is not willing to give us the answers we deserve. I find it very irritating that we will not question the Afghans about their knowledge of what took place that night.”
U.S. Central Command’s official investigation concluded that a rocket-launched grenade from a Taliban fighter standing near the landing zone clipped a rotary wing, sending the Ch-47 Chinook into a violent downward spin. It was the worst day for fatalities in the history of naval special warfare.
The tragedy took some of the glow off SEAL Team 6’s grand achievement just three months earlier: A team penetrated Pakistan airspace, infiltrated a compound in Abbottabad and killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.
The families accept the fact that a single shot brought down the helicopter. But some say the official report, which contained no direct criticism of decision-makers that day, did not delve deeply enough.
 

They believe SEAL Team 6 had a target on its back and that persons inside the Afghan National Security Forces may have tipped off the Taliban that night in Tangi Valley. That is why, they say, a fighter just happened to be stationed in a turret within 150 yards of a landing zone that had never been used before.
A Defense Department special operations official told a House subcommittee last year that there is no indication the mission was compromised by the Afghans.
Family members are hoping Freedom Watch, a watchdog legal group led by Larry Klayman, can force new disclosures using the power of the FOIA process.
Since filing a lawsuit, Mr. Klayman says, he has been “stonewalled” by the Justice Department, the Defense Department, the CIA and the National Security Agency.
U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon in February signed an order requiring the Obama administration to release documents on a continual basis through the spring and summer. The Justice Department said at least 50 documents in the Pentagon have been identified as relevant, but only one has been turned over. And Justice unilaterally set a new deadline for the release and then ignored it, Mr. Klayman said. Throughout, he said, Justice lawyers have refused to take his phone calls.
“They don’t even produce under their own self-imposed deadline,” Mr. Klayman told The Washington Times. “We’re pleading with the judge to do something, and he’s just sitting on it.”
In one of his motions, Mr. Klayman stated: “As this Court must be aware, this is not an ordinary Freedom of Information Act case, it involves obtaining records concerning the deaths of Navy SEAL Team 6 and other special operations forces on a mission with the call sign Extortion 17. The families of these deceased heroes have been stonewalled by the Obama Department of Defense and the Obama National Security Agency in disrespect over their sons’ unexplained tragic deaths. Many of these family members are undergoing psychological care over what has become a double tragedy: the deaths of their sons and the cover-up for which these family members feel betrayed by their own government.”
Mr. Klayman said the NSA has agreed to provide some information. Since the agency’s main task is to eavesdrop on phone and Internet messages, it may have recorded communications related to the attack.
A Justice Department spokeswoman said there would be no comment beyond its court filings. Its lawyers have told the judge that the process of locating relevant documents and removing classified information takes time.
The mission
It was exactly four years ago, at 2:22 a.m., that a rebuilt conventional CH-47 Chinook helicopter took off from a forward operating base, carrying some of the most skilled and advanced warriors ever molded by U.S. special operations.
Onboard were 17 members of SEAL Team 6; five naval special warfare operators, including one to intercept communications and another to handle Bart the war dog; five Army flight crewmen, including a National Guard and an Army Reserve pilot; and three Air Force personnel. The force included seven Afghan soldiers and an Afghan interpreter.
The mission itself has proven controversial to some family members. The immediate reaction force (IRF) was assembled hastily for insertion into Tangi Valley to help Army Rangers capture fleeing Taliban.
The Rangers were not in need of rescue. Military officers interviewed by investigators said they could not recall an IRF ever being sent for such a mission.
The Chinook was descending on a noisy battlefield where Apache helicopters and a C-130 gunship had been buzzing overhead for three hours, alerting Taliban fighters. Planners selected a landing zone that had never been used before. The Chinook had no Apache escort, as did the Ranger team that enjoyed the element of surprise when it touched down hours earlier.
The two Apaches, Gun 1 and Gun 2, on scene were never emphatically told to move near the landing zone to scan for threats. They stayed fixed on enemy “squirters,” or runners, until just a few minutes before landing.
“Honestly, sir, I don’t think anybody had really looked at the LZ,” said the pilot of Gun 1. “I mean, at any time if we would have found these squirters, or they would have found weapons, we were — the way I was understanding it, we were going to be clear to engage due to the fact that they had weapons, but we had to [positively identify] them first.”
He added: “So we hadn’t started looking at the LZ yet, just due to there was so much more of a threat to the east with the squirters. I would say that on the three-minute call is when Gun 2 started looking at the LZ, giving an LZ brief op. I would say that was the first time that we really had eyes on the LZ.”
No one saw two Taliban armed with grenade launchers standing on a mud-brick turret well within range of the descending chopper.
The navigator on the AC-130 gunship said there was simply too much gun and engine noise to think that the Chinook could make an undetected entrance.
“One of the other things that we did talk about — kind of what you’re hitting on, sir, is about the fact that, you know, for three hours we had been burning holes in the sky,” the officer told investigators. “You’ve got [Apaches] flying around, so there’s a lot of noise going on and, basically, this entire valley knows that there’s something happening in this area. So, to do an infil on the X or Y, you know, having that element of surprise in the beginning of an operation is good, but by the time we’ve been there for three hours, and the party’s up, bringing in another aircraft like that, you know, may not be the most tactically sound decision.”
Today, some family members are not just disappointed in the investigation and the FOIA process, but also in how the House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittee on national security conducted a brief hearing in Feb. 2014.
No family members were allowed to testify. The Pentagon’s witness stuck to a theme that no mistakes were made that night, though the investigative file contained testimony from a number of witnesses saying the mission was riddled with missteps.
“The hearing as it took place was meant to honor the heroes of Extortion 17 instead of to answer our questions,” Mr. Hamburger said.
“During the last several years it is evident that our government has spent a lot of time and resources covering up the truth on many things from both our allies and the American public,” Mr. Hamburger added. “Things like Benghazi and the NSA. I am afraid that with this FOIA case that the government is purposely delaying turning over documents because they need the time to redact and to delete things they do not want the American public to become aware of.”
Charlie Strange, whose Navy cryptologist son, Michael, was on Extortion 17, told The Times last year that it was too much of a coincidence for Taliban to be standing so near the landing zone.
“Somebody was leaking to the Taliban,” said Mr. Strange. “They knew. Somebody tipped them off. There were guys in a tower. Guys on the bush line. They were sitting there, waiting. And they sent our guys right into the middle.”
223  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Intel Matters on: May 16, 2017, 11:33:57 AM
If memory serves, Obama flapped his gums quite a few times e.g. regarding what was found in the OBL hit, giving data on Brit nukes to the Russians, and more.  Let's see if we can dig up some citations.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/wikileaks/8304654/WikiLeaks-cables-US-agrees-to-tell-Russia-Britains-nuclear-secrets.html

Good thing we haven't had a malignant narcissistic incompetent buffoon who discloses sensitive information to the Russians as president before.
 rolleyes
224  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / McMaster: “The president in no way compromised any sources or methods.” on: May 16, 2017, 11:32:22 AM
http://legalinsurrection.com/2017/05/live-mcmaster-speaks-to-press-about-trump-russia/

McMaster: “The president in no way compromised any sources or methods.”

 
 
 
Posted by Mary Chastain      Tuesday, May 16, 2017 at 11:33am
McMaster described the discussion with the Russians as “wholly appropriate.”

Yesterday, The Washington Post caused mass hysteria when it released a report that President Donald Trump provided highly classified information to the Russian Foreign Minister and Ambassador. Of course the publication used anonymous sources.

Now, National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster will address the media over this story. He denied the story twice yesterday, stating “I was in the room. It didn’t happen.”




McMaster starts the conference by saying that Trump will speak to leaders of Muslim countries to confront radical Islam. He continues to describe his visit to Israel.

McMaster stands by his denial of the WaPo story and the premise of the article is false. Our national security is at risk when those violate confidentiality. Trump did not say anything inappropriate or violate our national security.

He again tells the press that the discussion was “wholly appropriate” and was standard info discussed with heads of states working together. He is also not concerned that others will start withholding information from us.

McMaster reminds the press that Tillerson and Powell were in the room as well and no one thought the information was inappropriate. He also said that it’s “wholly appropriate for the president to share whatever information necessary to advance the security” of our country.

The information he talked about was about operations already going on and known to the public.

The president in NO WAY compromised sources or methods during the conversation with the Russians.
225  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: President Trump on: May 16, 2017, 09:18:46 AM
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/wikileaks/8304654/WikiLeaks-cables-US-agrees-to-tell-Russia-Britains-nuclear-secrets.html

Good thing we haven't had a malignant narcissistic incompetent buffoon who discloses sensitive information to the Russians as president before.
 rolleyes
226  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: UN Agency helps Norks with Chem War Patent on: May 15, 2017, 11:14:11 PM

Shocking!   

Not!!!
227  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Intel Matters on: May 15, 2017, 07:47:46 PM
"Dubious sources, but I can picture him being this kind of stupid"

Me too. Of course, if he put the information on an unsecured email server, that's totally cool with the dems.

228  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Who are Comey and Rowenstein? on: May 15, 2017, 02:57:03 PM

http://ijr.com/2016/09/703663-fbi-director-let-hillary-off-the-hook-now-we-know-why-he-wouldnt-talk-about-the-clinton-foundation/
229  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Social justice wars, SJW warriors, victimhood, St Olaf college Hoax on: May 15, 2017, 02:53:24 PM
A story that went by recently was quite big here in MN.  Happens to be the college my daughter attended.  John Hinderaker also has a daughter attending there so Powerline blog has had good coverage of this, as well as in local news.

St Olaf college is a small, four year, expensive, Lutheran based school with high academics, world famous choir, good tennis team and a lot of blonde girls.  They "value diversity" and pay big money to get minorities to attend.  It is somewhat of a conservative place for a college these days, dry campus for example, though the students went for Hillary 90-10.

This is a happy place with not a hint of a racial problem and then along comes this story that a student of color found a good riddance, n-word note on her windshield, and then they shut the campus down, blocking where students eat, canceling classes, making demands, forcing the administration to study solutions etc.

But the note was a hoax, fake news, didn't happen; the student wrote her own note.

So what happens next?  They are thankful these (false) issues were brought to light and will continue to study and address them even though the incident was false.

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2017/05/hate-crime-farce-at-st-olaf.php
http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2017/05/the-trouble-at-st-olaf.php
https://www.thecollegefix.com/post/32560/
http://m.startribune.com/st-olaf-report-of-racist-note-on-black-student-s-windshield-was-fabricated/421912763/

https://www.thecollegefix.com/post/32392/
‘Student coup’ at St. Olaf College: Students block buildings, classes shut down over racial unrest
NATHAN RUBBELKE - STAFF REPORTER •MAY 1, 2017
 6340  1072 Share281  62

Racial unrest has wracked St. Olaf College, a small campus in rural Minnesota, with students essentially taking over the campus with aggressive protests that forced administrators to cancel classes on Monday so demonstrators could air their grievances in a day-long sit in.

The sit-in followed unrest on Saturday during which angry students blocked entrances to campus buildings and demanded redress for a string of alleged racial incidents on campus.
---------------------
Anyone familiar with the college should have been able to see from the start this was a calculated, SJW hoax.  If someone had a hatred toward this student, it would not have been for her skin color.  Real victims of real problems should be upset with fake victims of fake causes, hurting not helping them.


SJWs always lie. Fake but true is their mantra.
230  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Liberals Are An Inferno Of Flaming Crazy And We Should Pour Gasoline On The Fir on: May 15, 2017, 09:32:43 AM
https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2017/05/15/liberals-are-an-inferno-of-flaming-crazy-and-we-should-pour-gasoline-on-the-fire-n2326754

Liberals Are An Inferno Of Flaming Crazy And We Should Pour Gasoline On The Fire

Kurt Schlichter |Posted: May 15, 2017 12:01 AM 
 


Pity the Democrats, to the extent you can without bursting into hysterical laughter at their agony. America has thoroughly rejected them in every branch of the federal government plus out in the states, and on top of that they were utterly humiliated by the guy they all claimed was a complete moron. Which begs the question – what does that make the sanctimonious harpy he crushed in the Electoral College?

They still haven’t realized what’s going on. Their ego-driven drive to dominate normal people and shape us into New Socialist Nongendered Beings has blinded them to the bitter reality.

We think they, along with their minions in the media, in Hollywood, and on campus, suck.

They are baffled at our refusal to acknowledge their moral, intellectual, and political superiority. It doesn’t just compute.

Yeah, well compute this, geebos.

You look nuts. I mean wacko, zonked out, “Hey, that goldfish is firing a mind control laser at my brain and making me break dance” nuts.

But don’t stop. No, pump it up. You’re at “11,” and I say take it to “12.”

This is great!

All this insanity is going to help us normals retain power, from your gyno-hat marches to the fake hate crimes to your insistence that the Russians are responsible for everything from Hillary losing the election to the rarely-discussed but well-known liberal epidemic of ED.

Here’s a little test. It’s been about six months since Trump treated The Smartest Most Accomplished Woman In The World like a NordicTrack treats Harry Reid, and does anyone know even one person who has said, “You know, I voted for Trump, but now after Neil Gorsuch, General Mattis and H.R. McMaster, I really wish I had checked the box for Felonia von Pantsuit?”


I’m not talking about alt-right weirdos – they don’t count. I mean literally, unless they remove their off-brand Nike knock-offs. I mean normal people. Who voted for Trump and now says something remotely like this?

“Yeah, I really regret not letting Hillary pick a SCOTUS judge who thinks the Constitution bans guns but mandates taxpayer-subsidized transsexual abortions!”

“Wow, that 70% drop in illegal alien entries into America and all those deportations of MS-13 guys are depriving the country of valuable, productive future Democrat voters!”

“Gosh, I hate so much how Trump has paid attention to that sliver of our country lying between I-5 and I-95!”

“It was Ashley Judd’s v-cap slam poetry, combined with Bill Nye’s sex confusion clip, that convinced me what America needs is liberals back in power!”

No one.

No one who voted for Trump has ever said any of those things. Oh, they might have voted for him reluctantly, but no statistically significant slice of them wish they hadn’t.

But the Democrats work under the assumption that such folk exist and are receptive to their tantrums. Good! These liberals are crazy, and they’re stupid, and we totally need to encourage them to keep doing crazy, stupid things.


We conservatives are supposed to be terrified by polls that say that the House could flip to the Dems in 2018. Just ask President Clinton about how the liberal wishcasting multiplier effect on the polls worked for her, but the fact is that we have 18 months to go. On the Democrat side, it looks to be 18 months of kookiness that will leave us normals scratching our heads and snickering.

“Yes, I know that just this morning I was saying Comey should have been fired but then Trump actually did it and his doing what I suggested is the worst constitutional crisis ever!”

“Bombing Putin’s ally was a cunning ploy to throw us off the trail!”

“Why, even though failed FBI Director Jim Comey, James “MC Leakmaster J” Clapper, Diane “Crypt-keeping It Real” Feinstein, and even noted particle physicist Maxine Waters concede that there’s no evidence that Trump and Putin are breeding a collusive love child, I’m still convinced of the existence of this sweeping, enormous, and invisible conspiracy that occurred for some reason somehow, and about which absolutely zero evidence of Trump collusion has leaked out during ten months of colonoscopy-esque investigation despite everything else leaking out.”


Sounds legit.

Sure, Congress polls right around the popularity of “Outhouse scuba diving” and “Borrowing Charlie Sheen’s toothbrush,” but then who wants to live in a country where we like our politicians? It’s not like in 2016 we were high-fiving these guys. We get that a GOP Congress is a necessary evil. But we also get that a Democrat Congress is an unnecessary evil.

And while these liberal spazzes and their fussy Fredocon gimps are shrieking about the coming Armageddon in their high-pitched, girlish voices, Trump is just rolling along. Special prosecutor, schmecial prosecutor – he’s not falling for it. And did you see the ten judges he just nominated? You usually have to come up with roses and champagne to score like that.

Here’s how this goes. The Democrats, along with the media and Team Tinfoil, keep whining about Russians Russians Russians, and normal people keep tuning them out. While they’re babbling about nonsense that means nothing outside of the coastal looney bins, normal people are tuning into how the stock market and the job market just keep getting better, how we’re not taking guff from foreign creeps anymore, and we’re not talking about how much taxes will go up but about how much they’ll go down.


Tax reform is going to pass. Obamacare is getting repealed – it’s as dead in the Senate as it was in the House, which is not at all. Our military is getting rebuilt. We’re going to stop leading with our chin on trade. Things are going to keep getting better, and people will see it.

The only way the President can still screw this up is by choosing to screw this up. He won’t do it by messing with liberals. Keep tweeting those twerps into a sputtering rage! It pays dividends every time he provokes them to new heights of lunacy.

No, the President only fails by forgetting his conservative friends, and that is becoming a problem. Where are the hardcore cons at State and Defense? He needs to get solid business leader Anthony Scaramucci into the White House, like we conservatives were promised (A guy who can raise $20 million might come in handy). And as for judges, well, the motto for conservatives is “No Justice Willett, No Peace.”

The Democrats are being crazy and it’s a bad look. So let’s keep helping them do it. We can pity them even as we laugh at them.
231  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Tribe on: May 15, 2017, 09:22:27 AM
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/trump-must-be-impeached-heres-why/2017/05/13/82ce2ea4-374d-11e7-b4ee-434b6d506b37_story.html?utm_term=.3e4e7dce382e

apparently he is a journolister all along.

apparently this is what one gets by insulting the "elites" of DC and the Left and the Right.
They are going to run Trump out of town no matter what.  Wealthy powerful connected people do not like being treaded on.  And they are hell bent on destroying him.  They make the narrative and the laws and the interpretation of the laws .  Kapeesh?!?!?!?!

It is no more evident that there is a fifth column .

It is like us against the music bus.  The whole system is rigged from top to bottom.  Good luck trying to fight it.

I still stand with Trump.  We really have no one else .



"One of the things Trump has accomplished is to make clear that our best and brightest and most responsible are none of these things." - Glenn Reynolds
232  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: $48 LA-SF on: May 14, 2017, 09:43:03 PM

"To get the word out, the company is offering one-way trips for $48. That's expected to go up to $65 once things are fully up and running, but that's still cheaper than the cheapest nonpromotional airfare you're going to find, even on a budget carrier like Southwest. Add in the convenience of its pickup and drop-off locations at the Caltrain station in San Francisco and the Santa Monica Pier in LA and the SleepBus strikes us as a viable alternative to air travel, and a far better option than the Greyhound – at least until the high-speed train is complete."

Don't hold your breath on waiting on that.
233  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / So, you want to tear down historical symbols of slavery huh? on: May 14, 2017, 03:01:43 PM
Texas Veteran · @TexasVet
21 hours
So, you want to tear down historical symbols of slavery huh?
234  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / "Jack Goldsmith" pretty quiet about ethical issues for Obama's DOJ on: May 14, 2017, 02:57:48 PM
Was Goldsmith in a coma 2009-2016? Or was there not a smidgen of corruption for him to notice?



http://www.judicialwatch.org/press-room/press-releases/judicial-watch-obtains-fast-furious-crime-scene-photos-phoenix-2013-gang-style-assault-rifle-supplied-obama-justice-department/


Judicial Watch Obtains Fast and Furious Crime Scene Photos from Phoenix 2013 Gang-Style Assault with Rifle Supplied by Obama Justice Department

DECEMBER 18, 2014

Photos include close-up shots of Fast and Furious AK-47 rifle, blood-stained apartment, victim with massive head wound

(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch announced today that it has obtained graphic crime scene photos taken at the site of a 2013 gang-style assault on a Phoenix, AZ, apartment building, including a close-up photo revealing the serial number of the AK-47 rifle used by the assailants.  As a result of Judicial Watch’s October 2, 2014, public records lawsuit, the weapon has been already traced to the Obama Department of Justice (DOJ) Operation Fast and Furious gunrunning program.  The photos were also produced by the Phoenix Police Department in response to this lawsuit (Judicial Watch v. City of Phoenix (No. CV2014- 012018)). Full batch of photos can be viewed here.

According to press reports at the time of the assault, police investigating the shooting that left two wounded found an AK-47 assault rifle in the front passenger area of a vehicle that had crashed into a fence surrounding the apartment complex. Inside sources informed Judicial Watch at the time of the crime scene investigation that the AK-47 used in the assault had been provided to the assailants as part of the Obama-Holder Fast and Furious program. On October 16, 2014, Judicial Watch announced that, based upon information uncovered through its October 2 public records lawsuit, the U.S. Congress had confirmed that the rifle was tied to the Fast and Furious operation.  Attorney General Eric Holder has already admitted that guns from the Fast and Furious scandal are expected to be used in criminal activity on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border for years to come.

In an October 16 letter to Deputy Attorney General James Cole, Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA) and Rep. Darryl Issa (R-CA) to Deputy Attorney General James Cole detail:

Based on the serial number [1977DX1654] from the police report obtained by Judicial Watch and documents obtained during our Fast and Furious investigation, we can confirm that the assault rifle recovered in the vehicle on July 30, 2013, was purchased by Sean Christopher Stewart. Stewart pled guilty to firearms trafficking charges resulting from his involvement with Operation Fast and Furious … Stewart purchased this particular firearm on December 8, 2009, one of 40 that he purchased that day while under ATF surveillance.” [Emphasis in original]

According to the Phoenix Police Department report, ATF traced the firearm on July 31, 2013, the day after Phoenix police officers recovered it. Yet, over a full year has passed, and the Department has failed to notify the Committees … This lack of transparency about the consequences of Fast and Furious undermines public confidence in law enforcement and gives the impression that the Department is seeking to suppress information and limit its exposure to public scrutiny.

In addition, despite the fact that the crime scene photos obtained by Judicial Watch clearly revealed a serial number that would show that the AK-47 used in the commission of the crime was a Fast and Furious weapon, the City of Phoenix and Department of Justice failed to turn over the incriminating photos to Congress, despite longstanding requests for such information. According to Judicial Watch sources, investigators knew at the scene and subsequently that the AK-47 was a Fast and Furious weapon.

The graphic crime scene photos include, but are not limited to, the following:

The Fast and Furious AK-47 laying in the front passenger well of the assailant’s vehicle
The Fast and Furious AK-47 in the police department evidence room
A close-up shot of the Fast and Furious AK-47 clearly revealing the ID number
A picture of the blood-stained apartment of the victim shot in the assault
A close-up picture of the victim with a massive gunshot head wound
A close-up shot of the victim’s ID
A handgun found at the scene of the crime
Three weeks following the July 29, 2013, assault, four suspects were apprehended in a raid conducted jointly by Phoenix police detectives and investigators from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). According to press reports at the time “numerous rifles and handguns” were found when, “Detectives from the Phoenix Police Department and Homeland Security Investigations served federal search warrants.”

The presence of DHS investigators immediately raised questions because Phoenix was the central location of the ATF’s deadly Fast and Furious gunrunning operation. Operation Fast and Furious was a Justice Department/ Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) program in which the Obama administration allowed guns to go to Mexican drug cartels in the hopes that the guns would end up at crime scenes, thereby advancing gun-control policies. Fast and Furious weapons have been implicated in the murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and hundreds of other innocents in Mexico.

The failure to provide Congress with reports about the Phoenix crime scene is not the first time the Obama Justice Department has been accused of withholding Fast and Furious information. On June 28, 2012, Attorney General Eric Holder was held in contempt by the House of Representatives over his refusal to turn over documents about why the Obama administration may have lied to Congress and refused for months to disclose the truth about the gunrunning operation.  It marked the first time in U.S. history a sitting Attorney General was held in contempt of Congress.

Separate Judicial Watch litigation for these documents, which had been subjected to an extraordinary executive privilege reelection season claim by President Obama, forced their release.  Attorney General Holder announced his surprise retirement two days after the federal court ruling that led to the disclosure of the documents and to President Obama’s abandoning all of his controversial executive privilege claims that had kept the documents secret for nearly three years.


“Another Obama administration Fast and Furious cover-up has been undone by Judicial Watch.  These crime scene photos graphically illustrate the legacy of President Obama and Eric Holder’s deadly Fast and Furious lies,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “Even as the evidence and casualties mount, the Obama administration is still secreting information about its reckless program. These photos show the American people firsthand the bloody consequences when an out-of-control administration will not even admit – or correct – its own mistakes.”

___________________________________________________________________________________________________

https://aclj.org/executive-power/acljs-files-lawsuit-over-ag-lynchs-secret-meeting-with-bill-clinton-will-hold-obamas-justice-department-accountable

I told you about the Obama Justice Department’s incompetence and corruption when, over four months ago, I called for Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s resignation.

I told you about General Lynch’s decision to hold a secret meeting on her airplane with former President Bill Clinton – just days before the FBI interviewed his wife, the former Secretary of State, as part of a criminal investigation; and just days before General Lynch announced the former Secretary of State would not be indicted.  Here’s what I said in June:

Misconduct. Dishonesty. Impropriety. No matter what word you choose, Attorney General Lynch’s secret meeting with former President Bill Clinton was flat-out wrong.  She’s clearly disqualified from participating in the investigations into former Secretary of State Clinton’s private email server.

And she must resign.

I’m leading our senior litigation team preparing to file legal demands and ethics complaints.  If the DOJ doesn’t respond and she doesn’t resign, we’ll be back in federal court.
As promised, we took action. We sent Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to the Obama Justice Department and the FBI, demanding answers on how such a careless and perhaps intentionally underhanded meeting was allowed to happen.

The FBI acknowledged our FOIA requests, and even granted our request for expedited processing by determining that we had shown our requests concerned “[a] matter of widespread and exceptional media interest in which there exist possible questions about the government’s integrity which affect public confidence.” The Justice Department remained silent.

Then, last week’s earth-shattering news hit that the FBI – a component of the Justice Department – was reopening the underlying criminal investigation.

And early this week, the FBI advised the ACLJ Government Accountability Project that “[n]o records responsive to your request were located.”  Hard to believe. What may be even harder to believe, though, is the fact that the Department of Justice completely ignored our lawful requests for records. Or maybe that’s just par for the course.

So today, we’re forcing their hand. We’re taking the Obama Administration to federal court. Again. We’re filing a lawsuit against the Department of Justice, to ensure true justice. If the corruption and flippant disregard for the law won’t stop, neither will our Government Accountability Project, and neither will our lawsuits.

As we explained in our Complaint, we’re demanding records like this:

Any and all records containing the names of any DOJ official, staff or employee who participated in any discussion regarding the meeting between General Lynch and Bill Clinton that occurred on Monday, June 27, 2016, at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Arizona.
Any and all records, communications or briefings prepared, sent, received or reviewed by General Lynch or any other DOJ official, staff or employee, at any time, containing any discussion of or in any way regarding the meeting between General Lynch and Bill Clinton that occurred on Monday, June 27, 2016, at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Arizona.
Any and all records of any communication or briefing received by General Lynch, any DOJ official, staff or employee from Bill Clinton or his staff regarding the meeting between General Lynch and Bill Clinton that occurred on Monday, June 27, 2016, at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Arizona, regardless of whether the communication or briefing was received before, during, or after the meeting. 
Any and all records of any communication or briefing prepared, sent, received or reviewed by General Lynch, her staff, or any other DOJ official or employee or any other person from June 13, 2016 to Sunday, June 26, 2016, containing any discussion of or in any way naming, regarding, involving or referencing Bill Clinton.
Any and all records of any communication or briefing prepared, sent, received or reviewed by General Lynch, her staff, or any other DOJ official or employee after the meeting on Monday, June 27, 2016, between General Lynch and Bill Clinton at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Arizona, containing any discussion of ethics rules or DOJ Standards of Conduct governing attorneys in connection with the meeting or Lynch’s relationship with Bill Clinton.
Any and all records of any communication or briefing prepared, sent, received or reviewed by General Lynch, her staff, or any other DOJ official or employee after the meeting on Monday, June 27, 2016, between General Lynch and Bill Clinton at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Arizona, containing any discussion of the press, responding to the press, or the content of any press release or public statements in connection with the meeting.
We told the Court: “The Defendant [DOJ] has wholly failed to respond to Plaintiff’s FOIA request.” In fact, the Obama Administration’s failure to respond violated the statute in two ways. So we brought two Counts.  First, in Count I, we explained:

Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. § 552(a)(6)(A), Defendant was required to determine whether to comply to Plaintiff’s request within twenty (20) days, excepting Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays. Pursuant to this same provision, Defendant also was required to notify Plaintiff immediately of the determination, the reasons therefore, and the right to appeal any adverse determination to the head of the agency.
Then in Count II, we described the additional violation:

Defendant is in violation of 5 U.S.C. § 552(a)(6)(E)(ii), in that Defendant has failed to make “a determination of whether to provide expedited processing,” which “shall be made, and notice of the determination shall be provided to the person making the request, within 10 days after the date of the request.”
The bottom line of our lawsuit is this: the “Defendant is unlawfully withholding records requested by Plaintiff pursuant to 5 U.S.C. § 552.” The Justice Department’s answer to our suit will be due in about 30 days. We’ll let you know how they respond and keep you informed as our newest lawsuit progresses.

General Lynch has disqualified herself from this critical investigation. She has no business having any involvement in an FBI investigation of this magnitude. We will do, and are doing, everything we can to hold her accountable.

Today’s filing is our fourth major federal lawsuit filed against the Obama Administration over its corruption and failure to comply with FOIA – the law.  We’ve filed eight FOIA requests demanding information from: 1) the Obama State Department about the Iran lie, 2) the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and its components about its “jihad” word purge, 3) the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the FBI over Attorney General Lynch’s secret meeting on a plane with former President Bill Clinton, 4) the FBI and the DOJ regarding its decision to censor the Orlando jihadist’s 911 transcript, 5) the State Department over its funding of an organization that was involved in an attempt to unseat Israel’s Prime Minister, 6) the Obama State Department over its inaction on the ISIS genocide against Christians, 7) DHS and its components over the wrongful granting of citizenship to potential terrorists, and Cool the State Department over apparent pay-to-play collusion with the Clinton Foundation.

We are currently in ongoing litigation against the Obama Administration over the Iran lie, inaction on genocide, collusion with the Clinton Foundation, and now the secret meeting between Attorney General Lynch and former President Bill Clinton. We are also winning in multiple federal lawsuits against the Obama Administration’s IRS over its unlawful targeting of conservatives groups.
235  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: More indications Intel Assessment of Russian Interference was rigged on: May 14, 2017, 02:33:27 PM

Still 100% evidence free!

236  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iran refining nuke delivery, flagrant violation on: May 14, 2017, 02:31:04 PM




http://insider.foxnews.com/sites/insider.foxnews.com/files/styles/780/public/sailors.jpg?itok=ERjTHM45

Who is going to stop them?
237  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Special prosecutor called but no crime on: May 14, 2017, 02:29:18 PM

Show me the man and I’ll find you the crime.

Lavrentiy Beria
238  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 14, 2017, 10:49:42 AM
What is the IHS?

Ihs.gov

The Indian Health Service

Known as the leading cause of death on the reservation.
239  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The Venezuela Diet! on: May 13, 2017, 02:15:33 PM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBf66wAMpVQ



Good thing America was founded on magic soil that prevents such things from happening here!
240  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The craven cowards at the FBI, starting at the top with Comey on: May 13, 2017, 12:04:35 PM
http://www.bookwormroom.com/2017/05/12/cowards-fbi-comey/

The craven cowards at the FBI, starting at the top with Comey
MAY 12, 2017 BY BOOKWORM 12 COMMENTS

Comey pretended that his moral cowardice was a virtue, a dangerous attitude that empowers weak people and that permeates the entire FBI.

FBI Comey J. Edgar Hoover Building Federal Bureau of Investigation
As Comey’s firing as FBI director continues to roil the Left, all sorts of interesting things are emerging. For example, it was Comey who gave Bill Clinton a pass in 2002 following an investigation into Clinton’s Marc Rich pardon. Having been one of the Whitewater investigators, you’d think Comey would have figured out early that, where there’s a Clinton, there’s a rat to be smelled, but somehow . . . he didn’t.

Comey was also the one who authorized the FBI to spend $100,000 investigating Dinesh D’Souza’s $20,000 illegal campaign finance donation. One could say that keeping elections clean is so important that money is no object, but that’s not what the FBI and other government branches had said before they got D’Souza — a prominent Obama and Democrat Party critic — in their sights. Previously (and since then), for small dollar campaign finance violations, the government had handed out small punishments.

View image on Twitter
View image on Twitter
 Follow
 Dinesh D'Souza ✔ @DineshDSouza
WHY I'M SMILING TODAY: This capo James Comey allocated $100,000 to investigate my $20 K case--all to please his mob bosses Holder & Obama
3:35 PM - 9 May 2017
  7,176 7,176 Retweets   13,708 13,708 likes
Kimberly Strassel has written a scathing article detailing Comey’s ongoing corrupt practices, made all the more damning by the fact that she pretends to take Comey at his word — namely, that he sees himself as a model of virtue and rectitude constantly saving the day:

. . . t seems the head of the FBI had lost confidence—even before TarmacGate—that the Justice Department was playing it anywhere near straight in the Clinton probe. So what should an honor-bound FBI director do in such a conflicted situation? Call it out. Demand that Ms. Lynch recuse herself and insist on an appropriate process to ensure public confidence. Resign, if need be. Instead Mr. Comey waited until the situation had become a crisis, and then he ignored all protocol to make himself investigator, attorney, judge and jury.

By the end of that 15-minute July press conference, Mr. Comey had infuriated both Republicans and Democrats, who were now universally convinced he was playing politics. He’d undermined his and his agency’s integrity. No matter his motives, an honor-bound director would have acknowledged that his decision jeopardized his ability to continue effectively leading the agency. He would have chosen in the following days—or at least after the election—to step down. Mr. Comey didn’t.

Which leads us to Mr. Comey’s most recent and obvious conflict of all—likely a primary reason he was fired: the leaks investigation (or rather non-investigation). So far the only crime that has come to light from this Russia probe is the rampant and felonious leaking of classified information to the press. Mr. Trump and the GOP rightly see this as a major risk to national security. While the National Security Agency has been cooperating with the House Intelligence Committee and allowing lawmakers to review documents that might show the source of the leaks, Mr. Comey’s FBI has resolutely refused to do the same.

And where is the rest of the FBI in all of this? Some agents are taking a “brave” and “virtuous” stand too. In true FBI tradition, showing the backbone and strength for which they’re known, they’re changing their Facebook pictures to show Comey’s face, rather than their own [that’s sarcasm, in case you wondered]:

FBI agents are reportedly changing their Facebook profile photos to pictures of James Comey — or pictures of them with Comey — to show their support for the sacked FBI director.

The Daily Beast reported that at least a dozen agents had changed their photos, a gesture usually reserved for fellow agents slain in the line of duty.

According to Gateway Pundit, though, some agents are thinking of going public about their disagreements with Comey. The link in that article is to an October 17, 2016 article in which anonymous FBI agents say they’re displeased with Comey’s handling of matters.

You know what? I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for those agents to go public. I think FBI agents’ courage is limited to Facebook profile pictures.

I say that for the reasons I stated back in April 2016, when I predicted (accurately) that Hillary would get a pass. The basis for this prediction is my unchanging belief that middle class civil servants crave job security and will not allow principles to get in their way. (Please note that I don’t give myself any moral high ground as I have the same cowardly, middle class mindset.)

No matter how principled they’d like to think they are, most middle-class people will turn a blind eye to corruption in their midst rather than run the risk of being unable to pay their mortgage or fund all of the other payments necessary to support a middle-class lifestyle. They don’t think of themselves as dishonest or complicit in dishonesty. They think of themselves as cautious people who aren’t going to risk their children’s future for some grand-standing that, rather than resulting in applause, could leave them unemployed and desperate.

This episode from my past makes me doubt very strongly that Hillary Clinton will be indicted. I know that the rumor mill keeps saying that FBI agents, from Comey on down, will quit if Loretta Lynch lets Hillary walk. Some of the FBI agents whispering this to friendly reporters may even believe that they’ll quit.

Mostly, though, this is a bluff.  Why?  Because the people talking about quitting are middle-class people with mortgages, and school fees, and insurance, and all the other expenses that keep us in the middle-class living up to our own expectations. If Hillary really does walk, 99% of those “I’ll quit if she’s not indicted” agents will manage, very quickly and easily, to convince themselves to stay in their jobs, and get their salaries and pensions.

[snip]

We middle-class people — the ones who collect paychecks for showing up and doing our job — are not paying the piper. We’re not entrepreneurs who get to make our own decisions. Instead, we are dependent on the good will of the very people who may stand accused of corruption. It’s the government, the high-level management, the business owner, who pay the piper and call the tune. We just dance.  And if we miss a step, we’re out on our derrieres with nothing to show for all the skillful dancing we did for so many years before we alienated both piper and payor.

[snip]

Human nature is fixed. Those of us comfortable with our status are also trapped by our status. While there are people with sufficient moral courage or insufficient investment in their middle-class status who will take a stand, most of us will manage to tell ourselves a series of comfortable lies that enable us to live with the embezzler [and] the corrupt politician. . . .

Although I didn’t predict quite how Comey would ensure an outcome that protected Hillary, I was certainly right that a man craving both power and economic security would do what he did.

Ultimately, for all his public posturing, Comey is a coward — and, moreover, one who has managed to convince himself that his moral cowardice is a virtue. That’s a very dangerous mindset. The moment someone believes that about himself, he’s essentially anointed himself as King Rat. Moreover it’s been apparent for a while that this King Rat has been riding herd over a bunch of other cowardly, but morally superior, little rats.

Comey was a nascent J. Edgar Hoover, and those who work for him are either complicit because they support his methods and his ends or they’re complicit because they are too immersed in their delicately balanced middle class lifestyles to do anything that might harm them economically. Some will change their Facebook photos and some will murmur mutinously about “speaking out,” but that’s it. That’s all they’ll do.

The above is why those voters who pay taxes like President Trump. He’s not beholden to anybody and he reacts as a taxpayer would: This guy is doing a bad job, he’s abusing his power, and he shouldn’t be getting a salary. He needs to be fired.

No wonder Trump terrifies the resident rats in the D.C. Swamp.
241  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The craven cowards at the FBI, starting at the top with Comey on: May 13, 2017, 12:01:12 PM
http://www.bookwormroom.com/2017/05/12/cowards-fbi-comey/

The craven cowards at the FBI, starting at the top with Comey
MAY 12, 2017 BY BOOKWORM 12 COMMENTS

Comey pretended that his moral cowardice was a virtue, a dangerous attitude that empowers weak people and that permeates the entire FBI.

FBI Comey J. Edgar Hoover Building Federal Bureau of Investigation
As Comey’s firing as FBI director continues to roil the Left, all sorts of interesting things are emerging. For example, it was Comey who gave Bill Clinton a pass in 2002 following an investigation into Clinton’s Marc Rich pardon. Having been one of the Whitewater investigators, you’d think Comey would have figured out early that, where there’s a Clinton, there’s a rat to be smelled, but somehow . . . he didn’t.

Comey was also the one who authorized the FBI to spend $100,000 investigating Dinesh D’Souza’s $20,000 illegal campaign finance donation. One could say that keeping elections clean is so important that money is no object, but that’s not what the FBI and other government branches had said before they got D’Souza — a prominent Obama and Democrat Party critic — in their sights. Previously (and since then), for small dollar campaign finance violations, the government had handed out small punishments.

View image on Twitter
View image on Twitter
 Follow
 Dinesh D'Souza ✔ @DineshDSouza
WHY I'M SMILING TODAY: This capo James Comey allocated $100,000 to investigate my $20 K case--all to please his mob bosses Holder & Obama
3:35 PM - 9 May 2017
  7,176 7,176 Retweets   13,708 13,708 likes
Kimberly Strassel has written a scathing article detailing Comey’s ongoing corrupt practices, made all the more damning by the fact that she pretends to take Comey at his word — namely, that he sees himself as a model of virtue and rectitude constantly saving the day:

. . . t seems the head of the FBI had lost confidence—even before TarmacGate—that the Justice Department was playing it anywhere near straight in the Clinton probe. So what should an honor-bound FBI director do in such a conflicted situation? Call it out. Demand that Ms. Lynch recuse herself and insist on an appropriate process to ensure public confidence. Resign, if need be. Instead Mr. Comey waited until the situation had become a crisis, and then he ignored all protocol to make himself investigator, attorney, judge and jury.

By the end of that 15-minute July press conference, Mr. Comey had infuriated both Republicans and Democrats, who were now universally convinced he was playing politics. He’d undermined his and his agency’s integrity. No matter his motives, an honor-bound director would have acknowledged that his decision jeopardized his ability to continue effectively leading the agency. He would have chosen in the following days—or at least after the election—to step down. Mr. Comey didn’t.

Which leads us to Mr. Comey’s most recent and obvious conflict of all—likely a primary reason he was fired: the leaks investigation (or rather non-investigation). So far the only crime that has come to light from this Russia probe is the rampant and felonious leaking of classified information to the press. Mr. Trump and the GOP rightly see this as a major risk to national security. While the National Security Agency has been cooperating with the House Intelligence Committee and allowing lawmakers to review documents that might show the source of the leaks, Mr. Comey’s FBI has resolutely refused to do the same.

And where is the rest of the FBI in all of this? Some agents are taking a “brave” and “virtuous” stand too. In true FBI tradition, showing the backbone and strength for which they’re known, they’re changing their Facebook pictures to show Comey’s face, rather than their own [that’s sarcasm, in case you wondered]:

FBI agents are reportedly changing their Facebook profile photos to pictures of James Comey — or pictures of them with Comey — to show their support for the sacked FBI director.

The Daily Beast reported that at least a dozen agents had changed their photos, a gesture usually reserved for fellow agents slain in the line of duty.

According to Gateway Pundit, though, some agents are thinking of going public about their disagreements with Comey. The link in that article is to an October 17, 2016 article in which anonymous FBI agents say they’re displeased with Comey’s handling of matters.

You know what? I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for those agents to go public. I think FBI agents’ courage is limited to Facebook profile pictures.

I say that for the reasons I stated back in April 2016, when I predicted (accurately) that Hillary would get a pass. The basis for this prediction is my unchanging belief that middle class civil servants crave job security and will not allow principles to get in their way. (Please note that I don’t give myself any moral high ground as I have the same cowardly, middle class mindset.)

No matter how principled they’d like to think they are, most middle-class people will turn a blind eye to corruption in their midst rather than run the risk of being unable to pay their mortgage or fund all of the other payments necessary to support a middle-class lifestyle. They don’t think of themselves as dishonest or complicit in dishonesty. They think of themselves as cautious people who aren’t going to risk their children’s future for some grand-standing that, rather than resulting in applause, could leave them unemployed and desperate.

This episode from my past makes me doubt very strongly that Hillary Clinton will be indicted. I know that the rumor mill keeps saying that FBI agents, from Comey on down, will quit if Loretta Lynch lets Hillary walk. Some of the FBI agents whispering this to friendly reporters may even believe that they’ll quit.

Mostly, though, this is a bluff.  Why?  Because the people talking about quitting are middle-class people with mortgages, and school fees, and insurance, and all the other expenses that keep us in the middle-class living up to our own expectations. If Hillary really does walk, 99% of those “I’ll quit if she’s not indicted” agents will manage, very quickly and easily, to convince themselves to stay in their jobs, and get their salaries and pensions.

[snip]

We middle-class people — the ones who collect paychecks for showing up and doing our job — are not paying the piper. We’re not entrepreneurs who get to make our own decisions. Instead, we are dependent on the good will of the very people who may stand accused of corruption. It’s the government, the high-level management, the business owner, who pay the piper and call the tune. We just dance.  And if we miss a step, we’re out on our derrieres with nothing to show for all the skillful dancing we did for so many years before we alienated both piper and payor.

[snip]

Human nature is fixed. Those of us comfortable with our status are also trapped by our status. While there are people with sufficient moral courage or insufficient investment in their middle-class status who will take a stand, most of us will manage to tell ourselves a series of comfortable lies that enable us to live with the embezzler [and] the corrupt politician. . . .

Although I didn’t predict quite how Comey would ensure an outcome that protected Hillary, I was certainly right that a man craving both power and economic security would do what he did.

Ultimately, for all his public posturing, Comey is a coward — and, moreover, one who has managed to convince himself that his moral cowardice is a virtue. That’s a very dangerous mindset. The moment someone believes that about himself, he’s essentially anointed himself as King Rat. Moreover it’s been apparent for a while that this King Rat has been riding herd over a bunch of other cowardly, but morally superior, little rats.

Comey was a nascent J. Edgar Hoover, and those who work for him are either complicit because they support his methods and his ends or they’re complicit because they are too immersed in their delicately balanced middle class lifestyles to do anything that might harm them economically. Some will change their Facebook photos and some will murmur mutinously about “speaking out,” but that’s it. That’s all they’ll do.

The above is why those voters who pay taxes like President Trump. He’s not beholden to anybody and he reacts as a taxpayer would: This guy is doing a bad job, he’s abusing his power, and he shouldn’t be getting a salary. He needs to be fired.

No wonder Trump terrifies the resident rats in the D.C. Swamp.
242  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: تعجب on: May 12, 2017, 09:38:22 PM

Exactly as planned.
243  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / John Oliver is better than you on: May 12, 2017, 08:53:24 AM
https://pjmedia.com/trending/2017/05/10/john-olivers-terrible-horrible-no-good-very-bad-week/

John Oliver's Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Week
 BY DEBRA HEINE MAY 10, 2017 CHAT 25 COMMENTS

Late-night comedian John Oliver sure is having an interesting week.

It started with him blasting the FCC on his HBO show on Sunday, rallying viewers to flood the FCC with calls and comments defending net neutrality. Oliver is apparently a huge fan of the Obama-era regulatory structure that calls for Internet service providers to be treated like public utilities. The Republican chairman of the FCC, Ajit Pai, wants to throw it out.(Watch Pai explain why on Reason TV here.)

During the segment, Oliver beckoned his audience to take action and compared Pai to a serial killer: "When the Code of Federal Regulations looks out its window at night, there’s just Ajit Pai, standing silently, holding his weed whacker, waiting for his chance,” he said.

In related news, professional net-neutrality activists invaded Pai's neighborhood on Sunday to distribute door hangers resembling "wanted posters" to his neighbors. The flyers featured a black-and-white photo of Pai with the words "HAVE YOU SEEN THIS MAN?" written above the photo. Pai talked about the stunt on Matt Lewis' radio show earlier this week, dismissing the activists as "sort of annoying" while noting that they did "scare his children a little bit."


 
"Sadly, it seems once more we the people must take the matter into our own hands," Oliver said on his show Sunday. "Because the FCC are again going to invite public comment on their website — and conveniently for them, the process is actually a lot more complicated this time than it was three years ago."

After describing the complicated process people now have to go through to comment on the FCC site, Oliver told his viewers that his show had created the URL "gofccyourself.com," which could take them more directly to the page to leave a comment.

“Do not tell me you do not have time to do this,” Oliver said. “If the internet is evidence of anything else, it’s evidence that we all have too much time on our hands.”

Not long after the segment aired, the FCC’s website crashed, prompting many in the media to approvingly credit Oliver's viewers for crashing the site.

But it turned out that the website crash had nothing to do with comments.  According to a statement posted on the FCC’s website, it was a deliberate Denial of Service attack.


 Beginning on Sunday night at midnight, our analysis reveals that the FCC was subject to multiple distributed denial-of-service attacks (DDos). These were deliberate attempts by external actors to bombard the FCC’s comment system with a high amount of traffic to our commercial cloud host. These actors were not attempting to file comments themselves; rather they made it difficult for legitimate commenters to access and file with the FCC. While the comment system remained up and running the entire time, these DDoS events tied up the servers and prevented them from responding to people attempting to submit comments. We have worked with our commercial partners to address this situation and will continue to monitor developments going forward.
On Tuesday, the Washington Free Beacon reviewed the Oliver-inspired FCC comments and found that they were riddled with bots leaving fake messages and liberals making racist comments and threatening violence against Pai.

...an analysis of comments to Pai's Restoring Internet Freedom filing, which Oliver has dubbed " Go FCC yourself," shows thousands of comments using fake names and bots posing as "Jesus Christ," "Michael Jackson," "Homer Simpson," and " Melania Trump."
For instance, as of Tuesday evening, there were 1,761 comments filed under the name "John Oliver," 998 separate comments using the name "Yoni Schwartz," and 611 comments filed using "1" as the name.

Over 500 were submitted using Chairman Pai's name, as well as 189 from "Donald Trump" and 8 from "Obama."

Eleven submissions used some version of the word "f–k."

Pai also received death threats in several submissions. One commenter said, "[F]—k you Ajit Pai for what you're are trying to do and I hope you die a horrible painful death with no remembrance to your name you cocksucka [sic]."

Another said failure to keep net neutrality would "cause me to pray for the slow and painful death of Chairman Ajit Pai and every living member of his family, direct or indirect."

"Save internet and fuck this Ajit guy," said another. "He's from India, deport that asshole. We will take care of him when he's back."

Other comments used racial attacks against Pai, the son of Indian immigrants.

"Can you guys stop being complete greedy little s–ts and work for the American people and not for your wallets," said one commenter using the name " Andromeda Titan." "Also, f–k you Ajit Pai (a disgrace to all Indians). And f–k Trump too."

Another commenter said, "Ajit Pai looks and sounds like an Indian fraternity brother who exclusively f–ks underage women."

Wow, John Oliver's fans are a charming bunch, aren't they?

The most awkward moment for the left-wing comedian came on Wednesday when an expose in the NY Observer revealed that the he had used his wealth and connections to dodge New York property taxes on his multimillion dollar penthouse. It wouldn't be so bad if Oliver wasn't always presenting himself as a champion of the little guy and critic of the rich and powerful.

For years, Oliver has criticized the estate tax, which defenders, in a smart linguistic move dreamed up by Frank Luntz, long ago labeled the “ death tax”; and the tax code’s raft of loopholes that benefit special interests he identified as oil companies and hedge fund managers. Oliver even briefly established the bogus Our Lady of Perpetual Exemption to draw attention to tax-exempt status granted to churches and charities.
Back in July 2014, in an episode in which he lamented the Wealth Gap in America” (which has resulted in the richest one percent of Americans controlling 20 percent of annual income), Oliver said, “At this point the rich are just running up the score…What sets America apart is that we are actively introducing policies that disproportionately benefit the wealthy,” such as tax cuts and loopholes like trusts.

So it’s a little surprising to discover that just months before, Oliver had a tax attorney set up two revocable trusts, one for him and one for his wife, to hide the couple’s purchase of a $9.5 million Manhattan penthouse. Then he used a tax loophole created by Donald Trump himself back in the 1970s, when the current president was merely a prominent New York real estate developer and aspiring celebrity author.

I can't wait to find out what Thursday, Friday, and Saturday have in store for Oliver.
244  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Comey the clown on: May 12, 2017, 08:36:38 AM
http://stiltonsplace.blogspot.com/2017/05/federal-bureau-of-incompetence.html


245  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Game theory and North and South Korea on: May 12, 2017, 08:21:32 AM
http://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2017/05/12/conventional_artillery_and_nuclear__missiles_in_north_korea_111363.html

Well worth reading, IMHO.
246  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Venezuela on: May 11, 2017, 10:41:17 AM
Doug writes:

" an honest liberal"

isn't that an oxymoron?   wink

No, it's what is more accurately referred to as a "useful idiot" by those who seek power via socialism.
247  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Venezuela - Maybe they went too far (with socialism) on: May 11, 2017, 10:29:14 AM
Parasites cannot afford to kill the host.

'[Marxism] is not self sustaining.'

Even the good parts of government or public sector functions are not self sustaining - without a healthy, vibrant PRIVATE sector.

I asked an honest liberal, a Bernie Sanders supporter at the time, why Venezuela failed.  They were doing the same things there that liberals wanted to do here and they destroyed the economy.  She said:

"Maybe they went too far."

Yes, exactly.  All countries and economies have some socialism in them, common defense, post office, roads, safety net for the poor, government encroachments on private sector activities, etc.  In Venezuela under Chavez-Madura, they went too far!
248  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Trump Cans Comey Like A Boss on: May 11, 2017, 10:06:17 AM
https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2017/05/11/trump-cans-comey-like-a-boss-n2324865

Trump Cans Comey Like A Boss
Kurt Schlichter |Posted: May 11, 2017 12:01 AM 


 

We always knew Donald Trump was brassy, but until he sent half-stepping ex-FBI Director James Comey packing, we didn’t know that his manparts were made of brass. You gotta be hardcore to step up to that sanctimonious tool, that Kasich-With-A-Badge, and cut him off at the knees in the face of the inevitable monsoon of fake news media panic, girlish Democrat howling, and sputtering Menschian Russianoia.

No hesitation. No apologies. When it became inarguable that this pumped up functionary with delusions of omnipotence had finally passed his sell-by date, Trump pulled the trigger. That’s taking charge. That’s leading from the front. That’s regulating. Damn, it’s nice to once again have a chief executive who’s not a simpering femboy.

The pathetic Democrats were caught so utterly off-guard, and were so completely bought-into their spittle-flicking Comey hate, that their 180 from calling for Comey’s head to calling for his restoration will give them mental whiplash. They’ll be in figurative neck braces just like the one their hero Ted Kennedy wore after he left Mary Jo in the pond.

The morning of the day that Trump canned Comey, the Dems were in high dudgeon over Comey’s “correction” of his Senate testimony regarding how many classified emails Huma sent to her overexposed spouse. It was a lot less than what Comey told Congress…under oath…when everyone was watching. No biggie. He “clarified” it afterwards, so it was all good.

 
When normals give false testimony under oath, we call it “perjury,” and Comey’s former subordinates frog march them into federal prison. But when Comey does it, it’s merely an oopsie and he gets to shrug as the sad trombone blows.

Democrats have a beef about Comey telling Congress – which promptly leaked it – that he was reopening the Clinton investigation right before the election. But he was reopening it, and he assured Congress he’d let it know if he did, and it was a big deal. Hillary had no right to a free pass on the foreseeable consequences of her decision to flout the law. No toilet server, no hacks, no problem – this was all of her doing and no one should blame Comey for that. Nor was it Comey who kept her out of Michigan, Wisconsin, and the parts of Pennsylvania where people cling to their guns and religion.

But his “Free Pass for Hillary” press conference in July was perhaps the most transparently horrific decision by a Justice Department official since Janet Reno decided that she had to burn down the Branch Davidian compound to save its kids. Here’s the thing about Comey – he was arrogant. He was so arrogant that he took for himself the power to ignore the law because he determined, by himself, that if Hillary was treated like every other non-elite citizen the outcome would somehow be wrong. Voters might vote incorrectly if Hillary was held accountable and Comey, in his surpassing benevolent wisdom, could not allow that.


His press conference did incalculable damage to the American People’s faith in the rule of law. But he’s special, and his most-favored-felon treatment of fellow elite alum Hillary and her cadre of crooks was just professional courtesy.

His dedication to higher truth justified Jimmy lying to our faces. Any normal American, but not Hillary, would have been indicted over those classified emails – those of us who actually held security clearances understand that especially well. And that stuff about no prosecutor being able to prove the case? A first-year lawyer with a hangover could prove her U.S. Code violations to a jury of Kardashians with ADD.

Everything Comey said at that press conference after laying out that devastating indictment of Hillary Clinton was a lie. Everything. But he had his higher purpose. He was not bound by the petty rules that constrain lesser men.

It was never Comey’s job to determine whether to prosecute her. He was a cop – well, cops actually do cop things instead of ride a desk and stare lovingly into the mirror, but his role was law enforcement nonetheless. Comey was not a prosecutor. Yet he usurped that job because he felt that only St. Jim had the moral fortitude to see beyond and above our mere mortal laws. It was his obligation – nay, his duty – to ignore the statutes enacted by the People through the Congress and to do what he determined was right, not what the law required, not what his oath compelled, but what he felt good about.


Comey’s actions were not the actions of an officer of a democratic republic, but of an aspiring benign dictator who feels himself unbound by mere mortal laws. And history is replete with the heaps of bodies that lie at the far end of that slippery slope. Such men never stay benign long.

That pompous hack can never be too gone from office. He probably thought he was going to skate too, right up until the minute security showed up with an empty banker’s box to confiscate his access card and walk him out to the sidewalk.

The Democrats are fuming, enraged that President Trump dared to fearlessly exercise the power of every other president and dismiss those who serve at his pleasure whom he no longer finds pleasing. But he rejects the idea that because liberals disapprove, his every action is somehow illegitimate. Trump refuses to accept the narrative that he is The President*, America’s Asterisk-in-Chief.

Not a thing.

Savor this moment. You just lived through history. January 20, 2017, is when Donald Trump took the oath of office. May 9, 2017, is when he became President.
249  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media, Ministry of Truth Issues on: May 10, 2017, 05:57:50 PM
The left wing media HAS to be bribing inside people for dirt.  They have to be .  This otherwise makes no sense:

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/10/us/politics/how-trump-decided-to-fire-james-comey.html?_r=0

They have no problem inventing things from whole cloth when required.
250  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Venezuela Boils on: May 10, 2017, 11:21:53 AM
http://www.battleswarmblog.com/?p=29975

Venezuela Boils

The problem with reporting on the slow-motion trainwreck that is Venezuela is the “slow-motion” part. Things fall apart, children die, people starve, but it’s hard to gauge the rate at which the ship of state is slipping under the iceberg of reality due that giant gash of socialism in its side.

The crisis has now reached the “regular riots and soldiers shooting protesters in the street” phase:

An economy in shambles, lethal street crime, dungeons packed with political prisoners, and South America’s worst refugee crisis — it’s hard to find a misery that Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s government hasn’t visited on his compatriots in his four years in office. But by calling for a new constitution (Venezuela has had 26) as he did this week, Latin America’s ranking strongman may well have trumped his own dismal record.

On May 1, with the streets of Caracas and other major cities teeming with anti-government protests, Maduro announced a plan to convoke a constituent assembly to write a new constitution. As anti-climactic as that sounds, this was an autocratic milestone even for the country that has turned political and economic fiat into a science. In a single flourish, the Venezuelan leader proposed not just to bend the rules, as he has done repeatedly since coming to power in 2013, but also to junk the latest constitution — which his predecessor, Hugo Chavez, fashioned into a tyrant’s toolbox — and cherry-pick a Bolivarian dream team to deliver what will presumably be an even more authoritarian one.

If the proposal stands, as virtually all of Maduro’s decrees have stood to now, the new law in turn would bury the cherished trope among contemporary Latin American strongmen that their word, no matter how arbitrary, is still anchored in democratic process. “Maduro’s proposal was not just flagrantly unconstitutional. It was the most radical move in more than 17 years of Chavismo,” said Diego Moya-Ocampos, chief political risk analyst at IHS Markit, a London-based business consultancy.

Brazilian foreign minister Aloysio Nunes went further, labelling Maduro’s proposal a “coup” and a breach of democratic civility. “Maduro chose to radicalize,” Nunes told me in an interview. “This proposal is incompatible with the democratic process, slams the door on dialogue, and is a slap in the face to the Pope’s appeal for a negotiated solution.”

Even the Secretary General of the Organization of American States has recognized that Venezuela no longer even pretends to be a democracy:

There are elements of dictatorships that are unmistakable. Today I must refer to one more in Venezuela: the passing of civilians to military justice.

Venezuela´s civic-military regime represents the worst of every dictatorship. That includes tyrannical control over political freedoms and the basic guarantees of the people, the elimination of the powers of the branches of government of popular representation, political prisoners and torture, starting with the armed collectives, a kind of fascist blackshirts, with orders to attack civilians during protests.

The accusations of military prosecutors to civilians is absolute nonsense in juridical terms.

In Venezuela, the rule of law does not exist even in appearance.

The accusations of crimes of vilification and instigation to rebellion, as well as other categories of a similar nature, are part of a reactionary discourse devoid of legal grounds applied against demonstrators. The reality is that they simply serve the purpose of depriving peaceful protesters of their freedom.

When a government considers that its people are a threat to its continuity it is because it is a government whose strategy is to continue without the people and on the basis of the use of force.

This constitutes a new violation of the Constitution, which in its article 261 says clearly that:

“The commission of common crimes, human rights violations and crimes against humanity shall be judged by the courts of the ordinary jurisdiction. Military courts jurisdiction is limited to offenses of a military nature.”

More scenes from the disintegration of Venezuelan society over the last few months:

More classic commie moves: arrest opposition leaders and charge them with plotting a coup, in this case Gilber Caro.
They also banned opposition leader Henrique Capriles from holding political office for 15 years.
Another opposition leader, Leopoldo Lopez, has just disappeared in prison. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
Though his wife Lilian Tintori has evidently seen him, and says that he wants the opposition to continue protesting. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
“Last year, the average Venezuelan living in extreme poverty lost 19 pounds amid mass food shortages largely created and then exacerbated by government price controls—60 percent of Venezuelans said they had to skip at least one meal a day. Maduro joked that the ‘Maduro diet,’ as the government-induced starvation has been called, was leading to better sex, to the applause of government workers and party loyalists but few others. There have been shortages of food as well as goods like toilet paper, deodorants, condoms, and even beer.”
“Venezuela military trafficking food as country goes hungry.” (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
“Facing a bread shortage that is spawning massive lines and souring the national mood, the Venezuelan government is responding this week by detaining bakers and seizing establishments.”
Eight Venezuelans were actually electrocuted trying to loot a bakery.
“Venezuelans are fleeing to Brazil for medical care…A spiraling economic crisis and hyperinflation have cleaned Venezuelan hospitals of needles, bandages and medicine. Desperate for care and often undocumented, patients are overwhelming Brazilian emergency rooms as they turn up by the thousands.” (Hat tip: Dwight.)
“Consumer prices in Venezuela soared by 741% year-over-year in February 2017.”
That hyperinflation was so bad that Venezuela outlawed their own currency. “In mid-December, the Venezuelan government surprised its citizens by withdrawing from circulation the 100-bolívar note, its largest and most used bill, with only 72 hours’ warning.” (Hat tip: The Other McCain.)
Statue of Hugo Chavez torn down by protesters.
“The Venezuelan government is investigating alleged corruption in a $1.3 billion contract between the state oil company and a private contractor co-founded by a Saudi prince, according to law-enforcement officials and related documents.” Usual WSJ hoops apply.
In Venezuela, the prisoners are literally running the prisons. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
“Why is it that reporters keep scratching their heads about Venezuela’s descent into extreme poverty and chaos? The cause is simple. Socialism. End it and you will end the misery.”
“Chavista Socialism Has Destroyed 570,000 Businesses in Venezuela.”
Fracking means Venezuela will run out of money sooner rather than later. “A country like Venezuela, which was on the edge even before prices fell from $100 a barrel, well they’re running out of foreign exchange reserves, they’ve fallen from $66 to about $15 billion. And they’re collapsing and they’re running out of the ability to import food and other materials, and so there you’re dealing with almost societal instability, and order is being maintained by folks with guns.” (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
Venezuela’s oil tankers are too dirty to be allowed to dock in foreign ports.
The regime’s useful idiots among the American left remain strangely silent as the country they once held up as a shining example of the success of socialism collapses:
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 NIRP Umbrella @NIRPUmbrella
Michael Moore:

In 2013, the American filmmaker tweeted the following about #Venezuela 🇻🇪...

This tweet has aged horribly...
6:56 AM - 9 May 2017
  305 305 Retweets   320 320 likes
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 Feisty☀️Floridian @peddoc63
Bernie thinks American Dream move apt to be realized in #Venezuela
Would you like to retract that sentence @SenSanders ? #morningJoe
3:43 AM - 9 May 2017
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