Talk on the African American Community and the positive changes that are being made by the Trump Administration led by Ben Carson
Coverage of Trump Rally in Nashville and commentary on Roseanne Barr Tweet. Memorial Day Weekend!
Here’s how the Dream Act/DACA amnesty struggle shapes up as of today…
Each side wants something, and has vowed to remain steadfast on demands. But as is always the case with immigration legislation, there are three sides, not two. There are traditional, conservative anti-amnesty Republicans, passionate Republican immigration advocates, and liberal Democrats, united behind amnesty and in opposition to all things President Trump.
Twenty years ago, a congressional faction called the Blue Dog Coalition had 27 conservative Democratic members that, if it were still in existence, President Trump might be able to count on. But the Blue Dogs slowly faded as a force, and, on immigration, Democrats solidly favor amnesty.
The Democrats want amnesty for the so-called Dreamers, and also for the DACAs, two distinctly separate groups that the media will often conflate. A Dreamer amnesty would grant about 3.6 million aliens lifetime employment authorization, Social Security numbers, and eventual citizenship. About 700,000 DACAs would receive the same benefits.
Moreover, every year, one million legal immigrants enter the U.S. and become immediately work authorized. The complete immigrant worker tally is into the millions, and also includes illegal immigrants, temporary guest workers and blue collar employment-based visa holders like H-1B.
For the tens of millions under-employed, unemployed and the four million newly graduated young Americans hoping to get a decent job, the prospect of adding through amnesty more than five million new potential workers into a slack labor market makes their challenges harder to overcome. More jobs competition is the last thing struggling Americans need.
Worse, the resultant chain migration from either or both amenities would bring millions of the new immigrants’ relatives to the U.S., all work authorized. On average, each new legally arrived immigrant petitions 3.4 family members to come to America.
Conservative Republicans want a pro-America immigration package that is best represented in a new bill that Virginia U.S. Rep. Dave Brat recently introduced. Called the three-in-one bill because it draws from three previously introduced bills, Brat’s legislation would, first, mandate American job-protecting E-Verify. Second, it would end the lottery visa whose fatal flaws were exposed when it became known after the October New York terrorist attack which left eight dead that Uzbekistan national Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov had entered on that visa. Third, it would end chain migration.
When polled on whether they would like more immigration, and an expanded labor market that has depressed wages for decades, or immigration reductions that help U.S. workers, Americans even in traditionally blue states overwhelmingly chose less immigration. Honest polling taken on the importance likely voters put on passing a DACA amnesty shows dramatically declining support.
The rub is that big business, the Capitol Hill lobbies and Wall Street love amnesty. Collectively, they wield more influence than citizens. But President Trump holds the veto hammer. The question is, as it always is with President Trump, what will he do next?
On Laura Ingraham’s new Fox News show, the Ingraham Angle, President Trump said repeatedly that any amnesty bill that reaches his desk “must have” an end to chain migration. The way things are shaping up in Congress, however, the bill President Trump gets might have amnesty, but without the Republicans’ conditions.
President Trump may veto an amnesty bill or he may waffle, sign and, as he did with his pledge to end DACA on Day One, disappoint millions of his supporters.
Regarding the DNC’s secrets being spilled in the last election, the question is, as the American Thinker’s Mike Razar has put it, whether Wikileaks “received the information from the Russian government or from some non-Russian hacker source or even an inside leak rather than a hacker.” The question has become, did Guccifer 2.0 directly leak information to Wikileaks?
In order to assess this, we need to look at all of the facts. A recent front cover article of the New Yorker magazine, entitled Julian Assange, a Man Without a Country, reveals some previously unknown, unreported or unpublished interactions of Guccifer 2.0 with others, and other new information that does not even appear on the timeline of Guccifer 2.0 interactions on the “Guccifer 2.0: Game Over” website. One set of information, as extracted from the aforementioned New Yorker article, relates to how Guccifer 2.0 apparently knew that Wikileaks is delayed in releasing the files that Guccifer 2.0 allegedly sent them, and that this knowledge shows that Guccifer 2.0 is supplying Wikileaks with information, or simply colluding with Wikileaks.
1) On June 17th, the editor of the Smoking Gun asked Guccifer 2.0 if Assange would publish the same material it was then doling out. “I gave WikiLeaks the greater part of the files, but saved some for myself,” it replied. “Don’t worry everything you receive is exclusive.” The claim at that time was true.
2) In early July, for example, Guccifer 2.0 told a Washington journalist that WikiLeaks was “playing for time.” (Indeed, the article by Joe Uchill from July 13 contains these sentences from electronic chats: “The press [is] gradually forget[ing] about me, [W]ikileaks is playing for time and [I] have some more docs.”)
3) According to Uchill’s July 22 article, The [Wikileaks] site does not specifically address who leaked the documents, but hacker Guccifer 2.0 who recently breached the DNC servers confirmed via electronic message that the emails came from that hack. “At last!” he wrote.
Also, Khatchadourian notes other interactions that have not been documented by others so far, including his apparent attempt at interaction in mid-August 2016 with Emma Best, a journalist and a specialist in archival research who, according to her Twitter handle, is suing the FBI for 2.1 million documents. Khatchadourian seems to think that Guccifer 2.0 was considering sending his documents to Khatchadourian instead of Wikileaks in this time period. However, why would Guccifer 2.0 have written “at last!” on July 22nd to Uchill, and seemed to be happy with Wikileaks’ progress in releasing documents, but then attempted to find a different entity or individual to release the documents only a few weeks later in mid-August? It would make more sense if, between June 17 and July 22nd, the dates of the first and third aforementioned interactions, Guccifer 2.0 would have expressed a desire to send the DNC documents elsewhere. Regardless, Emma Best later commented on Twitter regarding the article, stating that “This is accurate.”
The question for American Thinker readers, researchers and the G-2.space community ought to be, do you agree with the New Yorker article when it claims that Guccifer 2.0 knew that Wikileaks is delayed in releasing the files in July 2016, as per the New Yorker article, the editor of the Smoking Gun and the Uchill articles from July 13 and July 22nd? It would be helpful if full transcripts of interactions with Guccifer 2.0 would be released by these entities for publication and analysis.
Article by William Hennessy
You probably believe the narrative. Because that narrative is strong right now. It has become common knowledge. Common knowledge in the formal, game theory sense of the word.
In game theory, common knowledge is something everyone knows everyone knows. And everyone know everyone knows. And everyone knows how everyone else will behave because of that knowledge.
Common knowledge doesn’t have to be true. In a common knowledge game, truth doesn’t matter. All that matters is conformity. Behaving or speaking in opposition to common knowledge does no good. Because the culture will punish you for speaking the truth if the truth counters common knowledge.
People who point out the truth during a common knowledge game get punished. For example, people who ate whole eggs during the cholesterol common knowledge game were punished. People who ate high fat, low carbohydrate diets during the fat-is-bad common knowledge game were punished. Punished by family. Punished by friends. Punished by doctors. Punished by strangers in hotel restaurants.
People who go along with common knowledge games usually suffer in the end. Like people who ate high carbohydrate diets and got fatter and fatter. But those who behaved according to the common knowledge weren’t punished. They were praised. For confirming.
You get the idea.
There’s a common knowledge game at play right now. A common knowledge game built on a lie.
The thing everybody knows everybody knows goes something like this: anti-slavery people want to tear down statues that remind them of Confederacy. Or of slavery. Or of any bad time in history.
That’s the thing everybody knows everybody knows. More accurately, everybody knows everybody will behave as if it were true. Even if no one actually believes it, nobody wants to face the punishment for pointing out that the common knowledge it a lie. Few want to defend statues against living, breathing humans. If you try to defend any statue, you’ll be called a fascist by Jake Tapper and Don Lemon.
Phoenix Trump Nazi Billboard Funded with Taxpayer Dollars
A controversial billboard depicting President Donald Trump as a Nazi was funded with taxpayer dollars and was commissioned by an “arts advocate” paid by a U.S. city to “diminish barriers,” records obtained by Judicial Watch reveal.
Who wants to be called a Nazi?
Donald Trump is being punished for pointing out the lies and hypocrisy from people who want to play the common knowledge game. Last week I pointed out that it takes character to risk your reputation by fighting common knowledge. Some call it foolish to fight common knowledge. I call it character.
Looking at the statue common knowledge game, I see something others don’t. Because I asked some different questions.
- Why now?
- Who’s calling the shots?
- Why did statue removal become an issue now?
- Has anyone asked?
- What if sinister forces were behind this statue-removal craze?
Last Monday, Trump asked if we’d have tear down statues of Washington and Jefferson next.
The common knowledge answer: “yes.” Because no one wants to counter the common knowledge game.
If my hunch is right, it won’t stop there. At some point, someone will start negotiating. That’s what happens. People negotiate.
At some point, someone will want to remove statues of even abolitionists and anti-segregationists. Statues of Mother Teresa. Statues of saints. The Gateway Pundit found
a Catholic church in California that has removed statues of Jesus and the Virgin Mary. Because of the common knowledge game.
If my hunch is right about who’s behind the anti-statue craze, those statues will come down, too. All of them. Jefferson. Jesus. Washington. Martin Luther King. Rocky Balboa. They’ll all come down.
There is no war on the Confederacy. That was over in 1865.
There is a war on statues, as ridiculous as that sounds. A war on all statues.
The anti-statue warriors aren’t fighting against slavery. They’re fighting against statues. They will push until someone pushes back. Until someone suggests eliminating all statues everywhere. Maybe even statues of dogs and horses.
Why, you are asking, would anyone be anti-statue? Who would want to live in a world devoid of statues?
You think I’ve lost mind.
But I remember reading somewhere that Patton thought it was strange. Strange that statues were prohibited in Islamic countries. Strange that a religion would prohibit statues.
So I looked it up. According to People of Our Everyday Life:
The Quran is Islam’s holy text, and its pages prohibit “makers of figures” from creating statues because of the belief that only Allah can create new beings. Quranic teaching holds that any home with statues inside would never be visited by the angels, and that promotion of idol worship is punishable on the Day of Judgment.
Crazes like the current anti-statue craze don’t come from nothing. They come from something. Someone. Someone pushes these crazes. And it’s probably radical Islamists. Just like ISIS is doing in Iraq and Syria.
Some people say Islam does not prohibit statues, only the worshipping of statues. But That’s not what the radical Islamists believe. Radical Islamists destroy statues. Radical Islamists destroy statues in Syria and Iraq. And in the United States.
I’m not saying everyone who destroys a statue is a radical Islamist. I’m saying the anti-statue craze is inspired by radical Islamists.
Most people who get behind the craze have no idea the real reason for the craze. They think they’re being anti-slavery. But they’re actually being anti-statue. They’re actually being anti-Western Civilization.
I could be wrong, and I hope I am. Maybe I am wrong. We’ll find out.
We’ll find out when the bargaining begins. When some levelheaded Senator suggests we just destroy all public statues. Destroy all the statues so no one can be offended.
See Also: The New Nazis published 03/22/2012
Missouri state Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City, posted the now deleted comment in a Facebook conversation saying “I hope Trump is assassinated!”
The comment was made in reply to a person whose relative works in the Secret Service.
Kevin McDermott – St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports:
Missouri state Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City, posted a comment in a Facebook conversation Thursday morning saying she hoped President Donald Trump will be assassinated.
The comment has since been removed. But Chappelle-Nadal confirmed to the Post-Dispatch that she had written it in response to another commenter before deleting it.
“I didn’t mean what I put up. Absolutely not. I was very frustrated,” Chappelle-Nadal told the newspaper. “Things have got to change.”
According to a screenshot of the now-deleted conversation obtained by the Post-Dispatch, another commenter named Chistopher Gagne’ was writing about a cousin of his who he said was on Trump’s Secret Service detail.
“But, what I posted earlier, I truly believe will happen, sooner … not later,” he wrote.
Full transcript: Donald Trump and Malcolm Turnbull’s phone call
The Prime Minister told US President Donald Trump during their heated January phone call America did not have to accept any of the refugees held on Nauru or Manus Island.
Read the full transcript of their call below.
Turnbull: Good evening.
Trump: Mr. Prime Minister, how are you?
Turnbull: I am doing very well.
Trump: And I guess our friend Greg Norman, he is doing very well?
Turnbull: He is a great mutual friend yes.
Trump: Well you say hello to him. He is a very good friend. By the way thank you very much for taking the call. I really appreciate it. It is really nice.
Turnbull: Thank you very much. Everything is going very well. I want to congratulate you and Mike Pence on being sworn in now. I have spoken to you both now as you know. I know we are both looking to make our relationship which is very strong and intimate, stronger than ever – which I believe we can do.
Turnbull: I believe you and I have similar backgrounds, unusual for politicians, more businessman but I look forward to working together.
Trump: That is exactly right. We do have similar backgrounds and it seems to be working in this climate – it is a crazy climate. Let me tell you this, it is an evil time but it is a complex time because we do not have uniforms standing in front of us. Instead, we have people in disguise. It is brutal. This ISIS thing – it is something we are going to devote a lot of energy to it. I think we are going to be very successful.
Turnbull: Absolutely. We have, as you know, taken a very strong line on national security and border protection here and when I was speaking with Jared Kushner just the other day and one of your immigration advisors in the White House we reflected on how our policies have helped to inform your approach. We are very much of the same mind. It is very interesting to know how you prioritize the minorities in your Executive Order. This is exactly what we have done with the program to bring in 12,000 Syrian refugees, 90% of which will be Christians. It will be quite deliberate and the position I have taken – I have been very open about it – is that it is a tragic fact of life that when the situation in the Middle East settles down – the people that are going to be most unlikely to have a continuing home are those Christian minorities. We have seen that in Iraq and so from our point of view, as a final destination for refugees, that is why we prioritize. It is not a sectarian thing. It is recognition of the practical political realities. We have a similar perspective in that respect.
Trump: Do you know four years ago Malcom [sic], I was with a man who does this for a living. He was telling me, before the migration, that if you were a Christian from Syria, you had no chance of coming to the United States. Zero. They were the ones being persecuted. When I say persecuted, I mean their heads were being chopped off. If you were a Muslim we have nothing against Muslims, but if you were a Muslim you were not persecuted at least to the extent – but if you were a Muslim from Syria that was the number one place to get into the United States from. That was the easiest thing. But if you were a Christian from Syria you have no chance of getting into the United States. I just thought it was an incredible statistic. Totally true – and you have seen the same thing. It is incredible.
Turnbull: Well, yes. Mr. President, can I return to the issue of the resettlement agreement that we had with the Obama administration with respect to some people on Nauru and Manus Island. I have written to you about this and Mike Pence and General Flynn spoke with Julie Bishop and my National Security Advisor yesterday. This is a very big issue for us, particularly domestically, and I do understand you are inclined to a different point of view than the Vice President.
Trump: Well, actually I just called for a total ban on Syria and from many different countries from where there is terror, and extreme vetting for everyone else – and somebody told me yesterday that close to 2,000 people are coming who are really probably troublesome. And I am saying, boy that will make us look awfully bad. Here I am calling for a ban where I am not letting anybody in and we take 2,000 people. Really it looks like 2,000 people that Australia does not want and I do not blame you by the way, but the United States has become like a dumping ground. You know Malcom, anybody that has a problem – you remember the Mariel boat lift, where Castro let everyone out of prison and Jimmy Carter accepted them with open arms. These were brutal people. Nobody said Castro was stupid, but now what are we talking about is 2,000 people that are actually imprisoned and that would actually come into the United States. I heard about this – I have to say I love Australia; I love the people of Australia. I have so many friends from Australia, but I said – geez that is a big ask, especially in light of the fact that we are so heavily in favor, not in favor, but we have no choice but to stop things. We have to stop. We have allowed so many people into our country that should not be here. We have our San Bernardino’s, we have had the World Trade Center come down because of people that should not have been in our country, and now we are supposed to take 2,000. It sends such a bad signal. You have no idea. It is such a bad thing.
Turnbull: Can you hear me out Mr. President?
Trump: Yeah, go ahead.
Turnbull: Yes, the agreement, which the Vice President just called the Foreign Minister about less than 24 hours ago and said your Administration would be continuing, does not require you to take 2,000 people. It does not require you to take any. It requires, in return, for us to do a number of things for the United States – this is a big deal, I think we should respect deals.
Trump: Who made the deal? Obama?
Turnbull: Yes, but let me describe what it is. I think it is quite consistent. I think you can comply with it. It is absolutely consistent with your Executive Order so please just hear me out. The obligation is for the United States to look and examine and take up to and only if they so choose – 1,250 to 2,000. Every individual is subject to your vetting. You can decide to take them or to not take them after vetting. You can decide to take 1,000 or 100. It is entirely up to you. The obligation is to only go through the process. So that is the first thing. Secondly, the people – none of these people are from the conflict zone. They are basically economic refugees from Iran, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. That is the vast bulk of them. They have been under our supervision for over three years now and we know exactly everything about them.
Trump: Why haven’t you let them out? Why have you not let them into your society?
Turnbull: Okay, I will explain why. It is not because they are bad people. It is because in order to stop people smugglers, we had to deprive them of the product. So we said if you try to come to Australia by boat, even if we think you are the best person in the world, even if you are a Noble [sic] Prize winning genius, we will not let you in. Because the problem with the people –
Trump: That is a good idea. We should do that too. You are worse than I am.
Turnbull: This is our experience.
Trump: Because you do not want to destroy your country. Look at what has happened in Germany. Look at what is happening in these countries. These people are crazy to let this happen. I spoke to Merkel today, and believe me, she wishes she did not do it. Germany is a mess because of what happened.
Turnbull: I agree with you, letting one million Syrians walk into their country. It was one of the big factors in the Brexit vote, frankly.
Trump: Well, there could be two million people coming in Germany. Two million people. Can you believe it? It will never be the same.
Turnbull: I stood up at the UN in September and set up what our immigration policy was. I said that you cannot maintain popular support for immigration policy, multiculturalism, unless you can control your borders. The bottom line is that we got here. I am asking you as a very good friend. This is a big deal. It is really, really important to us that we maintain it. It does not oblige you to take one person that you do not want. As I have said, your homeland officials have visited and they have already interviewed these people. You can decide. It is at your discretion. So you have the wording in the Executive Order that enables the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Secretary of State to admit people on a case by case basis in order to conform with an existing agreement. I do believe that you will never find a better friend to the United States than Australia. I say this to you sincerely that it is in the mutual interest of the United States to say, “yes, we can conform with that deal – we are not obliged to take anybody we do not want, we will go through extreme vetting” and that way you are seen to show the respect that a trusted ally wants and deserves. We will then hold up our end of the bargain by taking in our country 31 [inaudible] that you need to move on from.
Trump: Malcom [sic], why is this so important? I do not understand. This is going to kill me. I am the world’s greatest person that does not want to let people into the country. And now I am agreeing to take 2,000 people and I agree I can vet them, but that puts me in a bad position. It makes me look so bad and I have only been here a week.
Turnbull: With great respect, that is not right – It is not 2,000.
Trump: Well, it is close. I have also heard like 5,000 as well.
Turnbull: The given number in the agreement is 1,250 and it is entirely a matter of your vetting. I think that what you could say is that the Australian government is consistent with the principles set out in the Executive Order.
Trump: No, I do not want say that. I will just have to say that unfortunately I will have to live with what was said by Obama. I will say I hate it. Look, I spoke to Putin, Merkel, Abe of Japan, to France today, and this was my most unpleasant call because I will be honest with you. I hate taking these people. I guarantee you they are bad. That is why they are in prison right now. They are not going to be wonderful people who go on to work for the local milk people.
Turnbull: I would not be so sure about that. They are basically –
Trump: Well, maybe you should let them out of prison. I am doing this because Obama made a bad deal. I am not doing this because it fits into my Executive Order. I am taking 2,000 people from Australia who are in prison and the day before I signed an Executive Order saying that we are not taking anybody in. We are not taking anybody in, those days are over.
Turnbull: But can I say to you, there is nothing more important in business or politics than a deal is a deal. Look, you and I have a lot of mutual friends.
Trump: Look, I do not know how you got them to sign a deal like this, but that is how they lost the election. They said I had no way to 270 and I got 306. That is why they lost the election, because of stupid deals like this. You have brokered many a stupid deal in business and I respect you, but I guarantee that you broke many a stupid deal. This is a stupid deal. This deal will make me look terrible.
Turnbull: Mr. President, I think this will make you look like a man who stands by the commitments of the United States. It shows that you are a committed –
Trump: Okay, this shows me to be a dope. I am not like this but, if I have to do it, I will do it but I do not like this at all. I will be honest with you. Not even a little bit. I think it is ridiculous and Obama should have never signed it. The only reason I will take them is because I have to honor a deal signed by my predecessor and it was a rotten deal. I say that it was a stupid deal like all the other deals that this country signed. You have to see what I am doing. I am unlocking deals that were made by people, these people were incompetent. I am not going to say that it fits within the realm of my Executive Order. We are going to allow 2,000 prisoners to come into our country and it is within the realm of my Executive Order? If that is the case my Executive Order does not mean anything Malcom [sic]. I look like a dope. The only way that I can do this is to say that my predecessor made a deal and I have no option then to honor the deal. I hate having to do it, but I am still going to vet them very closely. Suppose I vet them closely and I do not take any?
Turnbull: That is the point I have been trying to make.
Trump: How does that help you?
Turnbull: Well, we assume that we will act in good faith.
Trump: Does anybody know who these people are? Who are they? Where do they come from? Are they going to become the Boston bomber in five years? Or two years? Who are these people?
Turnbull: Let me explain. We know exactly who they are. They have been on Nauru or Manus for over three years and the only reason we cannot let them into Australia is because of our commitment to not allow people to come by boat. Otherwise we would have let them in. If they had arrived by airplane and with a tourist visa then they would be here.
Trump: Malcom [sic], but they are arrived on a boat?
Turnbull: Correct, we have stopped the boats.
Trump: Give them to the United States. We are like a dumping ground for the rest of the world. I have been here for a period of time, I just want this to stop. I look so foolish doing this. It [sic] know it is good for you but it is bad for me. It is horrible for me. This is what I am trying to stop. I do not want to have more San Bernardino’s or World Trade Centers. I could name 30 others, but I do not have enough time.
Turnbull: These guys are not in that league. They are economic refugees.
Trump: Okay, good. Can Australia give me a guarantee that if we have any problems – you know that is what they said about the Boston bombers. They said they were wonderful young men.
Turnbull: They were Russians. They were not from any of these countries.
Trump: They were from wherever they were.
Turnbull: Please, if we can agree to stick to the deal, you have complete discretion in terms of a security assessment. The numbers are not 2,000 but 1,250 to start. Basically, we are taking people from the previous administration that they were very keen on getting out of the United States. We will take more. We will take anyone that you want us to take. The only people that we do not take are people who come by boat. So we would rather take a not very attractive guy that help you out then to take a Noble [sic] Peace Prize winner that comes by boat. That is the point.
Trump: What is the thing with boats? Why do you discriminate against boats? No, I know, they come from certain regions. I get it.
Turnbull: No, let me explain why. The problem with the boats it that you are basically outsourcing your immigration program to people smugglers and also you get thousands of people drowning at sea. So what we say is, we will decide which people get to come to Australia who are refugees, economic migrants, businessmen, whatever. We decide. That is our decision. We are a generous multicultural immigration nation like the United States but the government decides, the people’s representatives decides. So that is the point. I am a highly transactional businessman like you and I know the deal has to work for both sides. Now Obama thought this deal worked for him and he drove a hard bargain with us – that it was agreed with Obama more than a year ago in the Oval Office, long before the election. The principles of the deal were agreed to.
Trump: I do not know what he got out of it. We never get anything out of it – START Treaty, the Iran deal. I do not know where they find these people to make these stupid deals. I am going to get killed on this thing.
Turnbull: You will not.
Trump: Yes, I will be seen as a weak and ineffective leader in my first week by these people. This is a killer.
Turnbull: You can certainly say that it was not a deal that you would have done, but you are going to stick with it.
Trump: I have no choice to say that about it. Malcom [sic], I am going to say that I have no choice but to honor my predecessor’s deal. I think it is a horrible deal, a disgusting deal that I would have never made. It is an embarrassment to the United States of America and you can say it just the way I said it. I will say it just that way. As far as I am concerned that is enough Malcom [sic]. I have had it. I have been making these calls all day and this is the most unpleasant call all day. Putin was a pleasant call. This is ridiculous.
Turnbull: Do you want to talk about Syria and DPRK?
Trump: [inaudible] this is crazy.
Turnbull: Thank you for your commitment. It is very important to us.
Trump: It is important to you and it is embarrassing to me. It is an embarrassment to me, but at least I got you off the hook. So you put me back on the hook.
Turnbull: You can count on me. I will be there again and again.
Trump: I hope so. Okay, thank you Malcolm.
Turnbull: Okay, thank you.
You’d assume every world leader was disgusted with President Trump with the way the American media covers him.
Recently, the news has been largely about body language and a supposed push by Trump, (Scott Adams debunks this story in his periscope posted below) but there appears to be one person in particular who is showing favorable body language towards him; Croatian President, Grabar-Kitarovic.
Grabar-Kitarovic elected Croatia’s first woman president, 12 January 2015 …. Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic is a former foreign minister and member of the centre-right opposition HDZ party. BBC
Croatian ambassador to the United States from 2008 to 2011 and Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy at NATO under Secretaries-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen and Jens Stoltenberg from 2011 to 2014. She still remains the highest ranking female official to have served within NATO’s administrative structure. wikipidea
She is familiar with Trump according to Balkan Insight
“The situation was that Croatian diplomats did not have many contacts with people close to Trump since no one believed he could win the presidency.
“The consul gave to me a list of people the President wanted to meet and it happened to be that some of those people are my friends,” Blackard said.
“The men she met are powerful guys and are close to Trump … I assure you that no head of the state has had such a jump on the new Trump administration,” he said.
Blackard said Grabar Kitarovic even got tickets to Trump’s inauguration on Friday, but decided not to go so that her next visit would be “an even more productive one”, once Trump is President. –
It looks as though the two could have a great relationship going forward.
SEE BELOW: Scott Adams, the author of Dilbert has a great analysis of the “push” being reported by the MSM.
Coffee with Scott Adams – Did Trump shove a NATO leader? https://t.co/W9nuXlTIcU
— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) May 25, 2017
Click Here instead if embed does not work
Following President Donald Trump’s generally well-received speech in Saudi Arabia to an audience that included the heads of 55 Muslim-majority countries, the concern on the part of many in the media was whether or not this would relieve some of the pressure he is under back home. Bob Schieffer of CBS News acknowledged on CNN’s “Reliable Sources” that Trump sounded “presidential” during his speech. But even that was challenged by substitute host John Berman, who questioned whether Schieffer might somehow be “normalizing” President Trump.
Schieffer responded that that wasn’t his intention, but that he was just doing what a reporter does: “I’m not trying to normalize him in any way. I’m trying to do what reporters do…report and try to emphasize what I think was important here.”
But the specter of scandal was also present. Schieffer argued that Trump’s situation back home shared striking parallels with Watergate, during which then-President Richard Nixon was forced to resign from office. Part of that parallel was last week’s appointment of a special counsel, former FBI director Robert Mueller, to oversee the investigation within the Justice Department, coupled with the fact that Trump had recently fired FBI Director James Comey. The latter invited the comparison to Nixon’s firing of special prosecutor Archibald Cox.
Charles Blow of The New York Times senses “blood in the water,” and writes about what he sees as Trump’s “authoritarian desire for absolute control.”
The irony of the appointment of the special counsel is that the last time one was appointed, it was by then-deputy attorney general James Comey, the recently fired director of the FBI. He appointed his pal, Patrick Fitzgerald, who already knew the answer to the underlying impetus for the investigation. In that case, Fitzgerald knew that the person who leaked the name of Valerie Plame to Robert Novak was Richard Armitage. But Armitage was never prosecuted. Instead, they went after Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff Scooter Libby for trumped up perjury charges. That, I believe, was a travesty of justice. Libby should never have been prosecuted, nor found guilty.
Mueller already knows that, after nearly a year of investigations, no evidence has emerged of collusion between Trump, or his associates, and people connected to the Russian government. Were there meetings and conversations? Yes. But collusion to influence the outcome of the presidential election? Not according to former Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, who has stated publicly that he has seen no such evidence. That is the same James Clapper who said he was speaking for the entire intelligence community when he concluded in a report released in January that the Russians had meddled in the election with the express purpose of helping to elect Trump as president.
Did Russia meddle in our election? Perhaps. But what exactly does that mean? They’ve been doing it for decades. Did President Obama meddle in Britain’s election on Brexit? Did he intervene in Israel’s election against the sitting prime minister? Yes, absolutely. So where was the special counsel for that?
As in the Libby case, we now move on to trying to catch someone in a perjury trap, or obstruction of justice. But having a special counsel appointed is the scalp that the left was looking for. This can keep a cloud over the Trump administration for its entire run. It certainly fuels the left’s obsession to continue to bring up impeachment and Watergate on a constant basis. In contrast, some argue that this is the best thing that could have happened to Trump, since it takes the investigation out of the headlines—but it is already being treated as a full-fledged scandal.
Back in January, after it was revealed that the FBI had picked up intercepts of conversations between the Russian ambassador to the U.S. and retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, then-national security adviser to then-President-elect Trump, The Washington Post reported that the FBI had “not found any evidence of wrongdoing or illicit ties to the Russian government.”
Why not look into Hillary Clinton’s substantial business and financial ties to the Russians? We’ve done that, with the heavy lifting performed by Peter Schweizer, the author of Clinton Cash. The Clintons profited through high-price speeches and donations, as even The New York Times acknowledged, that came from the principals of the Canadian company Uranium One to the tune of more than $100 million dollars to their foundations, while Hillary’s State Department office was signing off on effectively giving Russia 20 percent of American uranium reserves. Clinton campaign manager John Podesta sat on the board of Joule Unlimited, which received $35 million in investments from Russia. And then there’s Skolkovo, Russia’s version of Silicon Valley. Again, money to the Clinton foundations from both Russian and American companies favored for the project. And the payoff? Hillary received nearly three million more votes than Trump. But she fell short on the votes that counted—the electoral votes.
And why wouldn’t the Russians want Hillary as president? The Obama/Hillary administration brought Russia back to power in the Middle East, handed Iraq to Iran, and freed a hundred plus billion dollars to Russian ally Iran in an unsigned disaster of a non-deal. Plus, all of her emails for four years as secretary of state sat unprotected on an unsecured, home-brew server, for anyone to hack. So where is the special counsel to look into that? When is a Republican-led Senate or House committee going to look into that collusion?
Following his firing by Trump, Comey had notes emerge in the pages of The New York Times claiming that Trump said something to him that the media have interpreted as obstruction of justice, based on the words Comey reportedly wrote down: “I hope you can let this go. He’s a good guy.” As recently as early this month,Comey said under oath before a Senate committee that he’d never been told to stop an investigation for a political reason, saying it “would be a very big deal. It’s not happened in my experience.” That was before he was fired.
Besides, as former federal prosecutor Andy McCarthy points out, based on the Obama precedent, in which he weighed in on an active FBI investigation into Hillary’s mishandling of classified material, Trump would certainly be off the hook.
Initially, Rod Rosenstein composed a memo which justified Comey’s firing based, in part, on his mishandling of the Hillary Clinton investigation into her use of a private email server. But Trump fueled the outrage towards him when he told NBC that he had decided to fire Comey anyway. “What I did is, I was going to fire Comey, my decision,” Trump told NBC News’ Lester Holt. “I was going to fire regardless of recommendation. He made a recommendation. He’s highly respected…But regardless of recommendation, I was going to fire Comey.”
The injustice here, and the double standard, is that there was never a media frenzy like this during the Obama years, nor a special counsel appointed or even contemplated. Republicans wither and crumble in the face of media pressure, and the indignation of leftist Democrats and media types who were unconcerned aboutObama’s scandals and abuses of executive power.
Many people think that Trump will be gone soon, somehow, whether through impeachment or resignation. HBO’s Bill Maher made a bet last week on his show that Trump will be out of office by the end of the year. The climate of hate created by the left, including the media, clearly exceeds anything we’ve seen before towards any other president, and that is saying a lot.
Nobody does it better than President Donald Trump. That is, drive the media crazy. And The Washington Post has gone nuts in reacting to the firing of FBI Director James Comey.
Remember that Comey botched the Hillary email and Trump/Russia investigations, using in the latter the discredited “Trump Dossier” of gossip that the anti-Trump intelligence community couldn’t even verify.
Comey was in over his head, as we demonstrated in part one of our series, “The final Truth about the Trump Dossier.” He had to resign or be fired.
In addition, Trump blew the whistle on the Russia probe, noting in his firing letter that Comey confirmed that Trump was NOT under investigation. Trump said “…I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation…”
Nevertheless, the Post is convinced that the firing means that Trump is guilty as hell and has dug his own political grave. Look at the headlines from Wednesday’s “Post Most” list of “popular” columns:
- Firing FBI director Comey is already backfiring on Trump. It’s only going to get worse.
- After Trump fired Comey, White House staff scrambled to explain why
- John McCain on Comey firing: ‘There will be more shoes to drop’
- In the wake of Trump’s brazen firing of Comey, it’s time to go nuclear. Here’s how.
- Jeffrey Toobin went ballistic about Trump and Comey. It was great TV.
- If Trump fired Comey over Russia, he must go
- The Comey debacle only magnifies the Russia mystery
- The shocking firing of James B. Comey puts new pressure on Trump and his team
- Trump is mirroring Nixon’s final days
- Firing Comey is a thuggish abuse of executive power
I am not sure this is an exhaustive list. I listed several that stood out as noteworthy. It is hysteria bordering on mental illness. There isn’t even a pretense of an objective analysis of the facts in the case.
As we noted in part one of our series on the phony dossier, “It appears that the only significant Russia connection the media have left out is the story that Accuracy in Media first broke in 2015 when we revealed retired Lt. General Michael T. Flynn’s attendance at a public conference in Moscow with Russian president Vladimir Putin.”
One big factor in the Post’s hatred of Trump is the role played by Post columnist David Ignatius in getting an illegal leak of classified information about Flynn. The paper wants desperately to divert attention away from the fact that Ignatius can be prosecuted under the law.
As we noted, “Whether Flynn disclosed the entire story about his Russian contacts remains to be seen. The matter is irrelevant to the far more serious issue in Flynn’s case, namely the illegal disclosure of his wiretapped conversations to CIA mouthpiece David Ignatius of The Washington Post. Unraveling how and why this occurred could shed light on the Watergate-style surveillance that President Obama or his aides authorized on the Trump campaign and how the political intelligence was shared with Hillary’s operatives in the bureaucracy.”
One of the above cited Post columns, “The Comey debacle only magnifies the Russia mystery,” is by Ignatius. He calls developments a “dark tale” and claims that the mission of a new FBI director “will include investigating Trump himself.” Yet Trump says Comey confirmed that the FBI is not investigating the President.
In fact, a new FBI director should investigate Ignatius and his CIA-connected employer, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos.
“Already,” says Ignatius, “congressional pressure is building for an independent counsel—which is the most sensible way to restore a measure of public confidence after this debacle.”
The lack of confidence is in the media. And the Post doesn’t even seem to know or care.
As we argued in our column, “Investigate and Prosecute the Press,” since it’s doubtful that Ignatius will volunteer his testimony and reveal his sources, a subpoena would be necessary. We pointed out, “He can then be prosecuted if, as expected, he conceals the names of those who used him as a conduit for illegal leaks of classified information.”
Trump is the elected President. He had the legal right to fire Comey for incompetence and other flaws outlined in Department of Justice memos. There is no evidence of any illegal activity by Trump, and the President says that Comey cleared him.
The evidence of illegal activity lies with the Post and its anonymous sources in the intelligence community. Publishing a hundred or a thousand anti-Trump columns cannot change this basic fact.
The paper should try to bring some basic standards of objectivity and fairness back to its coverage of the Trump administration. Otherwise, it will continue to be outwitted by Trump and his Tweets. The history of journalism has taken a “dark” turn with a paper whose promise under Trump became “Democracy Dies in Darkness.”
We predict the coverage will go from hysterical to laughable, since Bezos can underwrite this kind of material forever. The problem is that the paper’s liberal writers don’t seem to know the difference. At least it’s entertaining. It is a journalistic meltdown on public display.
Where are the Sex Tapes?
CNN’s report on FBI Director James Comey’s promotion of the “Trump dossier” makes no mention of the dossier’s fake claim of a sex-tape (which wasn’t actually made or seen by anyone), which supposedly caught Trump in a “compromising” act in Moscow. The disgusting “sex perversion” allegation now seems to be getting dropped as an embarrassment since it never got any traction, unlike the fake claim of a Russian conspiracy with Trump, which persists like a cancer.
“If a story isn’t playing well or if there is too much credible pushback, the perpetrators simply move on without apology or correction.” That is what The Washington Post said in explaining how Russian “kompromat,” or “compromising,” material works in the media. They seem unaware of the supreme irony since it perfectly describes the Post’s own anti-Trump playbook in perpetrating the weaving of conspiracy theories involving Russia and Trump based on the “dossier.”
More than $2 million in offered rewards have failed to turn up the nonexistent Russian intelligence sex tape on Trump—which even the “dossier” does not say was actually made or that the alleged act was actually witnessed by anyone. Two porn magazines, Penthouse and Hustler, offered the $2 million to anyone who could provide the Trump sex tapes, but after several months there has been absolutely nothing. (See BBC). This goes unmentioned by the vast majority of the media.
The Stanford Russia expert and Forbes contributor Paul Roderick Gregory points to many signs of the Russian origin of the “Trump dossier.” Besides the KGB-style writing that calls it all into question, there is also the Russian “gossip junky” style, careful avoidance of verifiable facts, outlandish claims to exclusive “fly-on-the-wall” inside knowledge of Putin’s inner circle, and claims to “know more than is knowable” about “just about every conceivable event associated with” the alleged Trump-Russia conspiracy. Gregory says that the “dossier’s” stories are “so bizarre” that they “fail the laugh test,” and are such “utter nonsense, not worthy of a wacky conspiracy theory of an alien invasion.”
It turns out that this imaginary Russian blackmail sex tape of Trump is all based on the fantasy gossip of two Russian hotel maids who themselves saw nothing (anonymous “female staffers” of the hotel, “E” and “F,” says the “dossier,” not managers or executives with greater responsibility or credibility).
The hotel maids only passed on the hearsay “story” they were “aware” of from still other anonymous source(s)—apparently another hotel maid or two—but did not know the date and were unsure even of the year, though they “believed” it was in 2013 (“Trump dossier,” Steele report, June 20, 2016).
The “story” is skimpy on factual detail. The pro-Hillary Russia lobbying firm, Fusion GPS, and its agent Christopher Steele tread a fine line between too little detail and too much detail—the more the detail, the easier to slip up in fabricating fake facts, and the more easily refuted by thorough fact-checking.
And that’s all there is. No names, no dates, no witnesses, no tapes, no evidence, no nothing.
Hillary Campaign Collusion with Loretta Lynch?
In a long piece on April 22, The New York Times attempted to figure out FBI Director Comey’s puzzling actions, in the course of which they dropped a bombshell. The Times reported that in early 2016 the FBI received copies of some emails and attached documents that had reportedly been hacked by the Russians.
One document was a disturbing “memo and an e-mail” from a Democrat Party “operative” who was “confident” that Obama Attorney General Loretta Lynch would curtail and contain the FBI investigation of Hillary Clinton’s infamous private email server, i.e., perpetrate a Watergate-style cover-up.
Collusion between the Obama administration and the Hillary campaign has been strongly suspected, especially since the infamous secret meeting of Attorney General Lynch with Bill Clinton on the tarmac in Phoenix. This “could be read as a message to Lynch that she’d better not charge Hillary if she expected to keep her job.” Bill Clinton didn’t even have to discuss the email server investigation with Lynch, as pointed out by the embedded reporters on the Hillary campaign in their sympathetic postmortem book Shattered.
But conservatives, they note, already “had pretty good circumstantial evidence that the Obama Justice Department and the Clinton [campaign] operation were coordinating on the e-mail scandal.”
Interestingly, this damning email the FBI obtained—about their boss Lynch rigging the Hillary email-server investigation—was never part of the WikiLeaks emails leaked from the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Hillary campaign chair John Podesta, or the “Trump dossier’s” schizo-conspiracy. So where did it come from?
The New York Times claims that unnamed “intelligence agencies” of unspecified nations could look inside nebulous and undefined “Russian networks” to “see” and copy what U.S. emails had been hacked, and that the bombshell email on AG Lynch was one of them. The FBI was merely a recipient of the hacked material and did no cyber warfare itself. No official U.S. agency is credited with the “seeing.”
This is not mere speculation. Soon after the Obama administration claimed on October 7 that Russia was interfering with the election, Newsweek reported on November 4 that “Ukrainian hackers began posting emails and other documents obtained from inside the Kremlin, although it is not clear if this effort was done in coordination with the American government [or in what time frame the hacking was done]” (emphasis added).
If U.S. agencies were using anonymous Ukrainian hackers—not U.S. cyber agencies—to “see” into supposed “Russian networks,” then the attribution to “Russia” or the “Kremlin” would hinge entirely on the unknown Ukrainians’ credibility, veracity and cyber skills. Clearly, no one in the U.S. Intelligence Community is willing to say this is conclusive proof of anything.
Even the “DNC” emails may not have come from the DNC. The Hillary campaign found some evidence that some or all of the DNC emails could have come from Hillary confidante Capricia Marshall’s email account or even John Podesta’s, according to the just-released book on the “doomed” Hillary campaign (Allen & Parnes, Shattered, chapter 18).
Like Comey, they were caught in the “wilderness of mirrors,” in which nobody is quite sure who is deceiving whom.
Next Up in Part Three: The Role of the CIA’s John Brennan
A Special Report from the Accuracy in Media Center for Investigative Journalism; Cliff Kincaid, Director
FBI Director James Comey has been caught going around to secret Congressional briefings in “recent weeks” touting the lurid fake “Trump dossier.” He has been claiming that it is a major foundation of the FBI’s investigation of purported Russian collusion with Trump to interfere in the election—months after the FBI had already assessed the “dossier” as non-credible.
Comey seems not to grasp the nature of the damage he’s inflicting on the Bureau and its reputation for efficient information-gathering and law enforcement. He is lost in a “wilderness of mirrors,” to use intelligence jargon popularized by the CIA’s legendary anti-communist mole-hunter James Jesus Angleton.
This “Trump dossier” is the controversial document supposedly composed by “ex” British MI6 agent Christopher Steele through the group known as Fusion GPS. Paid for by still-unidentified Hillary Clinton supporters, it was “opposition research” against then-candidate, now President, Donald Trump.
Fusion GPS has been revealed to be a pro-Russia lobby by Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA). British citizen Steele admitted he had larger plans than writing the “dossier” itself, but “really thought that what he had would sway the election“—by using the “dossier” to defeat Trump —said an associate to the BBC. That is called foreign interference in a U.S. election.
At this point, here is what we know for sure: the document, which was designed to “prove” that Trump is a Russian agent, originated with a group working on behalf of Russian interests and the Hillary Clinton campaign.
Indeed, evidence points to Russian involvement—via Hillary financiers and their hired-gun Russia lobby firm Fusion GPS—in fabricating the “dossier” to discredit Trump by claiming that he was part of a conspiracy to help elect himself president.
A Russia expert with 50 years’ experience, writing for Forbes, says the “dossier” reads like it was written by “a Russian trained in the KGB tradition.” Its “poor grammar and shaky spelling” with “KGB-style intelligence reporting” just does not “fit the image” of work by a “highly connected former British intelligence” officer, who was Oxford educated.
The Russians may have cobbled the “dossier” material together and passed it on to Fusion GPS and Steele to assemble and edit for the Hillary backers.
This means that the House and Senate Intelligence committees have been investigating the wrong alleged scandal. It’s not Trump and his associates who should be under scrutiny; it’s Hillary Clinton and her paid operatives—and their ties to Russia.
Has the FBI and its British counterpart, the MI5 security service, opened a case against Steele to investigate him for working for a Russian lobbying firm operating in the U.S.? Or was Steele working undercover for MI6 to infiltrate the Russian lobby? On the other hand, Steele was a “confirmed socialist” in college at Oxford when he was hired by MI6, another point of suspicion for someone who would be dispatched to Moscow as a spy and later serve as head of the Russian desk at MI6, all extremely sensitive positions. Anyone remember the Cambridge Five Soviet spy ring?
In a significant development, The Washington Times now reports that Michael D. Cohen, President Trump’s personal attorney, is considering legal action against BuzzFeed, which posted the fraudulent “dossier” that accused Cohen of conspiring with Russian agents. But Cohen never went to Prague—it was a “different Michael Cohen” who went there. Cohen told The Washington Times that he also is considering a lawsuit against Christopher Steele.
Cohen was probably chosen to be named in the “dossier” by its fabricators because the pro-Hillary media went viral against him for a campaign comment he made that enraged them. Cohen had dared to defy all the polls predicting Hillary would win, by saying, “says who?”—resulting in an extraordinary but belated post-election apology by The Washington Post.
It appears that the only significant Russia connection the media have left is the story that Accuracy in Media first broke in 2015 when we revealed retired Lt. General Michael T. Flynn’s attendance at a public conference in Moscow with Russian president Vladimir Putin. This was to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the propaganda channel “RT” (Russia Today), aka “KGB-TV.” Flynn, former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, became Trump’s national security adviser before resigning over apparent misrepresentations he made to Vice President Mike Pence about his perfectly appropriate conversations with the Russian ambassador.
The idea that Flynn was in any sense a Russia agent was undermined by the contents of his book, The Field of Fight, arguing that Russia and China are behind an “enemy alliance” of countries and movements trying to destroy the U.S.
Whether Flynn disclosed the entire story about his Russian contacts remains to be seen. The matter is irrelevant to the far more serious issue in Flynn’s case, namely the illegal disclosure of his wiretapped conversations to CIA mouthpiece David Ignatius of The Washington Post. Unraveling how and why this occurred could shed light on the Watergate-style surveillance that President Obama or his aides authorized on the Trump campaign and how the political intelligence was shared with Hillary’s operatives in the bureaucracy. (See previous AIM Special Reports March 18, April 4, April 11, April 17.)
We have previously pointed out the absurdities in the “dossier.” Some of the major media have acknowledged them as well. The document is a poorly slapped together collage of ridiculous contradictions and absurdities (e.g., Russian senior citizens in Miami as the DNC “hackers”).
Indeed, the very day the “dossier” was published on January 11, Newsweek posted an analysis, “Thirteen Things That Don’t Add Up in the Russia-Trump Intelligence Dossier,” with a video presentation titled “8 Reasons to be Skeptical.” The fact is that Newsweek had months to study the “dossier,” since its initial enthusiastic anti-Trump report made in time to influence the election. Newsweek saw some grave problems but withheld them until prompted to go public by the publication of the full 35-page “dossier.”
Newsweek caught one of the most glaring contradictions in the “dossier,” namely one paragraph saying that Russia “fed” Trump compromising intelligence on Hillary Clinton, the next saying they never did (though Newsweek did bungle some other points).
In a damning denial widely overlooked by the mainstream media, the BBC’s reporter covering the “Trump dossier” stated that:
“A former CIA officer told me he had spoken by phone to a serving [Russian intelligence] FSB officer who talked about the [claims of Trump sex] tapes. He concluded: ‘It’s hokey as hell.’” (BBC, Jan. 12, emphasis added)
Another intelligence source explained to the BBC how these “kompromat” (compromising) stories are made up by Russian intelligence for reasons of ego and pride:
“One Russian specialist told me…that [Russian] FSB officers are prone to boasting about having tapes on public figures [such as Trump], and to be careful of any statements they might make.” (BBC, Jan. 12)
But the hostile anti-Trump media claim the opposite, and insinuate that the “Trump dossier” might still be credible by seizing upon any hint of interest by U.S. intelligence, such as FBI director Comey’s secret briefings. Comey, in turn, has nothing else to prop up his fast-fading case for investigating Trump’s associates except by the desperate grasping of straws within the fake “dossier.” No “smoking gun” has ever been found.
“We can wait till hell freezes over. The material is not verifiable,” says the Stanford University Russia expert in Forbes. That is because the “dossier is fake news,” he concludes.
Indeed, despite its flaws and absurdities, the BBC reports that the FBI has been using the notorious fake “Trump dossier” as its “roadmap” in its baseless investigation of purported collusion between Trump and the Russians to get Trump elected, and of other (phony) allegations of Russian “interference” in the election.
Such charges, prominently featured in the major media (about 200 articles on the fake “dossier” in The Washington Post and New York Times alone), are obviously a factor in President Trump’s low approval ratings at the 100-day point in his administration. Based on a recent Washington Post/ABC News poll, Trump would still beat Hillary if the election were held today, including by 43-40 percent in the popular vote.
Comey Must Go
In view of reports that the FBI relied on the discredited “dossier” to justify getting a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court warrant against one-time Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning issued a statement demanding that Comey either step down or be fired.
“The FBI’s incredible incompetence and outright complicity with the politicization of government spying removes the last shred of credibility that Director James Comey has and he needs to either resign or be fired,” said Manning.
Journalist Bob Woodward of Watergate fame called the “dossier” a “garbage document” and said U.S. intelligence chiefs (thus including FBI’s Comey) should “apologize” to Trump for promoting it. A British director of an investigations firm told Newsweek that the “dossier” is “bulls–t territory” and a “shoddy piece of work.” A U.S. intelligence official called it a “nutty” thing to report to the president.
The FBI attempted to pay Steele $50,000 to continue his phony pro-Hillary, anti-Trump “investigation” in October 2016, just before the election. But the increasing media publicity of the shadowy “dossier” forced the Bureau to slink away—until now—with Director Comey seemingly trying to breathe life back into the dead hoax.
Comey’s conduct is almost as bizarre as the wild charges in the “Trump dossier.” In fact, he has been promoting the “Trump dossier,” even as his own FBI and the rest of the Intelligence Community (IC) have been “distancing themselves” from it, according to CNN, no friend of Trump.
CNN’s report on this issue was immediately twisted around by Business Insider into a fraudulent headline that says the exact opposite, namely that “We just got a huge sign that the US intelligence community believes the Trump dossier is legitimate” (emphasis added). See AIM’s Special Report.
But after more than six months of investigation, the FBI admitted that the “Trump dossier” was totally unsubstantiated. According to The New York Times on February 14:
“One American law enforcement official said that F.B.I. agents had made contact with some of Mr. Steele’s sources.”
“The F.B.I. has spent several months investigating the leads in the dossier, but has yet to confirm any of its most explosive claims” (emphasis added).
Intelligence agency officials have consistently denied finding any evidence for such Trump collusion with the Russians, in the “dossier” or in any other material, such as NSA-GCHQ digital wiretaps of Trump associates, despite enormous efforts by the media to suggest otherwise—even to flagrantly contradict the media’s own reporting (see how Business Insider flipped CNN’s report, mentioned above, on its head).
But Comey is still promoting—not investigating or critiquing—the fake “dossier,” apparently to justify the Bureau’s use of the document as the basis for its investigation of Trump in the first place. Does Comey seriously believe that Russian senior citizens in Miami hacked the DNC?
Comey has become a major embarrassment to the FBI.
PRESIDENTIAL POWER UNDER THE CONSTITUTION AND THE REASON WHY PRESIDENT TRUMP’S EXECUTIVE ORDER ON IMMIGRATION IS CONSTITUTIONAL
Recently, there has been quite a bit of discussion and controversy over the executive order President Trump signed into law barring certain classes of foreign-born individuals from entering the United States. I think it would be useful to go through the legal precedent and history regarding such order. Given the legal precedent regarding presidential action under these circumstances, I believe President Trump’s executive order on immigration is constitutional.
To understand this issue, one needs to look at the law on certain powers the president has under the Constitution. Namely, what are the president’s powers over foreign affairs under the Constitution and to what extent does the president share these powers under the Constitution with other branches of government?
One case I have heard being floated around justifying President Trump’s executive order is Chicago & Southern Air Lines v. Waterman S.S. Corp., 333 U.S. 103 (1948).
The Supreme Court in that case stated that the president is the primary federal official responsible for the United States’ dealings with foreign nations under the Constitution. Id. at 112. Waterman involved the Supreme Court deciding that the president could not be subject to judicial review for decisions made pursuant to the Civil Aeronautics Act, which established a Civil Aeronautics Board to grant applications of foreign air carriers to travel to and from foreign locations into the United States, such applications being subject to presidential approval. Id. at 114. However, while I believe Waterman is instructive on this issue, I do not believe it is decisive because it dealt with Congressional regulation of a completely different field; namely, it dealt with congressional regulation of foreign commerce with the United States.
After Waterman was decided, the Supreme Court decided the landmark case of Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer, 343 U.S. 579 (1952), which I believe sets forth the guiding principles for President Trump’s executive order. In Sawyer, President Truman issued an executive order directing his Secretary of Commerce to seize all steel mills in the United States in response to a national steel workers’ strike. Id. at 583. President Truman justified this action on the fact that the United States military heavily relied on a ready supply of steel in fighting the Korean War. Id. President Truman reasoned that since the Korean War dealt with a military conflict on foreign soil, the Constitution gave the president the power, as commander-in-chief, to seize the steel mills. Id. at 587.
While Waterman involved Presidential action pursuant to Congressional approval, Sawyer involved Presidential action over matters not explicitly granted to him under the Constitution and without Congressional approval. Sawyer, 343 U.S. at 583. Justice Black, writing for the Court, held that the seizure of the steel mills in this case was not within President Truman’s power as commander-in-chief or head of foreign affairs. Id. at 589. The Court held that the president’s power to issue the order must stem either from an act of Congress or from the Constitution itself. Id. at 585. The Court reasoned that the president, as commander-in-chief of the armed forces, does not have the ultimate power to take possession of private property in order to keep labor disputes from stopping. Id. at 587. The Court noted that the president only has the power to implement laws executed by Congress; the president does not have the power to enact policy and then execute that policy enacted by him. Id. at 588.
Interestingly enough, Justice Black’s holding in Sawyer is not the test used to determine whether presidential action is constitutional when the area regulated is not explicitly within the president’s powers under the Constitution. The test set forth by Justice Jackson (ironically, Justice Jackson wrote the opinion and holding in Waterman) in his concurrence in Sawyer is the prevailing law that is still used today in determining whether the president has authority to act when such action involves powers not explicitly given to him under the Constitution. Sawyer’s holding is still good law and has not been overruled, but it is generally accepted by legal scholars that the test stated by Justice Jackson in his concurrence in Sawyer is the better test to determine the constitutionality of presidential actions under these circumstances. In his concurrence, Justice Jackson stated that “presidential powers are not fixed but fluctuate, depending upon their disjunction or conjunction with those of Congress.” Id. at 635. Justice Jackson set forth three situations and their legal consequences in determining whether the president has authority to act in any given situation. Id. Justice Jackson stated:
1.)“When the President acts pursuant to an express or implied authorization of Congress, his authority is at its maximum, for it includes all that he possesses in his own right [i.e. Article II] plus all that Congress can delegate. In these circumstances, and in these only, may he be said (for what it may be worth), to personify the federal sovereignty. If his act is held unconstitutional under these circumstances, it usually means that the Federal Government as an undivided whole lacks power. An [action] by the President pursuant to an Act of Congress would be supported by the strongest of presumptions and the widest latitude of judicial interpretation, and the burden of persuasion would rest heavily upon any who might attack it;
2.)When the President acts in absence of either a congressional grant or denial of authority, he can only rely upon his own independent powers [i.e. Article II], but there is a zone of twilight in which he and Congress may have concurrent authority, or in which distribution is uncertain. Therefore, congressional inertia, indifference or quiescence may sometimes, at least as a practical matter, enable, if not invite, measures on independent presidential responsibility. In this area, any actual test of power is likely to depend on the imperative of events and contemporary imponderables rather than on abstract theories of law;
3.)When the President takes measures with the expressed or implied will of Congress, his power is at its lowest ebb, for then he can rely only upon his own Constitutional powers minus any constitutional powers of Congress over the matter. Courts can sustain exclusive Presidential control in such a case only b[y] disabling the Congress from acting upon the subject. Presidential claim to a power at once so conclusive and preclusive must be scrutinized with caution, for what is at stake is the equilibrium established by our constitutional system.”
So what are the implications of action pursuant to the three zones above? Under the first zone, the President’s act will likely be held constitutional when Congress has the power to act under Article I and delegates him the authority by law (thus, under this zone, the President likely has all the powers Congress has under Article I and all the powers he has under Article II). Under the second zone, if Congress has not enacted any laws on the subject or has not regulated the subject, the President can rely specifically on his powers under Article II, but if it is a situation requiring swift, emergency action, the President may act on matters usually held to be within the exclusive control of Congress. Under the third zone, if Congress has explicitly and specifically denied the President power over affairs to which Congress has authority, the President can only rely on his Article II powers; any exercise of power not explicitly stated in Article II will likely be deemed unconstitutional.
This brings us to our current situation. President Trump enacted his executive order pursuant to 8 U.S.C.A. §1182(f), which states as follows:
“Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate. Whenever the Attorney General finds that a commercial airline has failed to comply with regulations of the Attorney General relating to requirements of airlines for the detection of fraudulent documents used by passengers traveling to the United States (including the training of personnel in such detection), the Attorney General may suspend the entry of some or all aliens transported to the United States by such airline.”
Congress has the explicit power under Article I, Section 8, Clause 4 of the Constitution to establish rules for naturalization, which by the very definition of naturalization would extend to the process of immigrants entering the United States. U.S. Constitution Article I, Section 8, Clause 4. Thus, since Congress has this power, it the above quoted statute likely falls under Justice Jackson’s 1st zone in Sawyer because the statute delegates to the President the power that Congress has to determine who may or may not enter this country. Since it likely does, there should be no reason to declare the President’s executive order unconstitutional because nothing in his executive order states that his power is being exercised pursuant to any other law or reason.
President Trump has consistently stated his executive order was based on protecting the United States from a terrorist attack and not to ban a certain religious group. Thus, the Free Exercise Clause under the First Amendment is irrelevant in assessing this executive order because nothing under the order mentions targeting a specific religious belief and no evidence has been brought for showing the administration considered religious beliefs when it enacted the order. The Supreme Court has held that religion must be specifically targeted, not generally affected under a law of neutral applicability, in order for there to be a violation of the Free Exercise Clause. Church of the Lukumi Babalu Aye, Inc. v. City of Hialeah, 508 U.S. 520, 534 (1993). While the Court in Church of the Lukumi Babalu Aye, Inc. v. City of Hialeah stated that facial neutrality of the law is not determinative of a Free Exercise Clause violation and that the Court will look to the purpose behind the law to determine if it targets religion, no evidence has been presented showing that religious discrimination was the intent of the administration in enacting President Trump’s executive order. Indeed, if that were the intent of President Trump’s order, the order likely would have extended to many more countries than the seven listed.
Let’s assume for argument sake that the statute (8 U.S.C.A. §1182(f)) has been declared unconstitutional. If that were the case, President Trump’s executive order would likely fall under Justice Jackson’s 2nd zone because President Trump would be enacting the executive order in a situation in which Congress was silent on his ability to take control over immigration.
The argument for President Trump in that case would be that his order was pursuant to an emergency and crisis given the increase in terrorist attacks and/or arrest in the United States, Europe, and abroad. On the other hand, the argument against President Trump’s order without the statute would be that Congress has not delegated to him the authority and it would be a violation of separation of powers to allow President Trump to unilaterally impose his policy on a subject which Congress controls. My point is that it would still be a 50/50 case under Justice Jackson’s 2nd zone test with good arguments on both sides.
Nonetheless, since President Trump’s executive order almost certainly falls within the 1st zone of Justice Jackson’s test on determining the validity of presidential action not explicitly listed in the Constitution, President Trump’s executive order is almost certainly constitutional given that it was enacted pursuant to an express grant by Congress under 8 U.S.C.A. §1182(f) and there has been no evidence presented that Congress revoked the president’s authority under 8 U.S.C.A. §1182(f). Like him or not, President Trump has strong constitutional authority to do what he did in implementing his executive order. Continue reading “Why Trump’s Executive Order on Immigration is Constitutional”
John Lewis recently said that “I think there was a conspiracy on the part of the Russians, and others, that helped him get elected. That’s not right. That’s not fair. That’s not the open, democratic process.” Putting aside questions of whether or not Russia hacked at all, and the claim of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange that his “source is not a state party,” there is nothing wrong with a foreign entity helping to disclose truth about public officials.
Investigative reporting is one of the most important contributions that the press makes to democracy, according to Silvio Waisbord, author of Watchdog Journalism in South America: News, Accountability, and Democracy. “It provides a valuable mechanism for monitoring the performance of democratic institutions as they are most broadly defined to include governmental bodies, civic organizations and publicly held corporations,” says Waisbord. But when media organizations fail to properly investigate these institutions, can the public get help from a foreign entity?
In this instance, Wikileaks disclosed specific examples of corruption of the DNC by hacking the emails of the DNC. That corruption is firstly expressed in Hillary Clinton having a different position personally than the one she says publicly, or in her words, “you need both a public and a private position.” Such private positions that she didn’t disclose publicly, is her private support for fracking, and her private opposition to gay marriage despite her public reversal.
Other examples include those of institutional corruption, such as how the DNC, which should be neutral in a democracy, helped Hillary Clinton win the primary when DNC surrogate Donna Brazile on two occasions, leaked debate questions to Hillary Clinton, as well as leaking a private email on African-American Outreach from a Sanders press representative to the Clinton campaign.
However, the deepest corruption exposed as a result of the paid speeches that the Clinton would make before, during and after Hillary Clinton was in office. One such example is how a corporate donor got access to Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State when he requested it. Another example of is Bill Clinton used Clinton Foundation staff to reach out to donors to the Clinton Foundation, in order for them to funnel their dollars to him through private speaking fees. This is the most clear example of corruption, of privately benefitting from public office. Of putting money in your pocket as a result of the position that you hold in the government.
Yet all of this information was found by Wikileaks, and not through the dogged investigations of the mainstream media. If it wasn’t for Wikileaks, we would think Hillary Clinton’s public position were here private position; that the DNC was perfectly neutral and that Hillary Clinton won her nomination fair and square; and that the sole purpose of the Clinton Foundation was AIDS research. If anything, Wikileaks saved the election from the lies and deception of the Clinton campaign. So what if a foreign entity intervened?
There is a stark difference between foreign propaganda, and foreign intervention that leads to more truth being exposed. The difference is that the first one is founded on a lie, and the second one is founded on the truth. There can never be enough truth in a democracy, unless getting to that truth involves the violation of rights. Yet acts of civil disobedience in terms of hacking are necessary at times when so much truth has become obfuscated. We cannot say how much hacking is too much hacking, only when the rights of individuals have become so impugned that it outweighs the value of the hacking. Yet in this instance, so much truth was revealed, so as to outweigh the rights to privacy and other rights of the DNC members. If the foreign intervention did not rely on hacking, but on disseminating fake news like CNN does, then it would be foreign propaganda.
Foreign propaganda depends on a “subconscious manipulation of psychological symbols to accomplish secret objectives,” according to Kenneth Osgoode. It has been described as “the use of communication skills of all kinds to achieve attitudinal or behavioural changes among one group by another,” by historian Oliver Thomson. In other words, how to emotionally effect you so that you will hold a position that is not necessarily grounded in fact. An example of foreign propaganda would be if a foreign entity would say, “The Democrats are Weak, America is Corrupt, Your Democracy is losing,” etc. These would be baseless claims, or be grounded in inadequate sources that would inaccurate.
In this example, the truth is exposed by hackers, and no additional emotional matter is added to the information, nor is the information taken out of context. This is because as the Wikileaks shows, Hillary Clinton is indeed corrupt. The reply of Americans if the Russian hacking allegations are true to help find the truth internationally as well, such as, for instance, researching the alleged examples of money laundering that Vladimir Putin was engaged in, as exposed by the Panama Papers, and any human rights violations, foreign and domestic. Democracy is not infallible, and needs to be preserved by those willing to find the truth, no matter who they are.
Dan Wolf | Living Rightly
We’re all familiar with this year’s election issues. They include: the economy, jobs, taxes, the regulatory burden (all internal), and national security, the terrorism threat, border integrity, and rebuilding our military (all external). While all these, and more, are valid issues; there is something more fundamental at stake that supports all the above. The principles which underlie these issues.
I started thinking about this as we took a trip back home a couple of weeks ago. We crossed most of Ohio and northern Indiana. These are areas that have done much better than most during the recent recession. However, we were stung by the number of empty storefronts, the number of restaurants at peak meal times without a single car in their parking lot, and the number of businesses closed altogether on the weekend in the small towns we passed through. We frequently hear about how good this recovery is, but that is hard to square with the reality we saw on our trip. (An earlier article regarding some fundamentals behind this recovery can be read here.) Of course if you live in the DC bubble, or Northern Virginia, I suppose things appear to look great. Four of the five wealthiest counties in the country are located around DC (Three in VA and one in MD). This relative affluence too is an inequality that is hard to square up when government is supposed to possess a service orientation.
This election offers two very distinct visions for the future. Visions that not only effect the direction we take, but the principles used to guide that direction. One alternative offers more of the same policies that we’ve seen over the last twenty four years. Yes, twenty four years – and more. The other offers a small step toward restoration, and away from the hopelessness generated by the present administration’s transformation. This article looks at three important principles that will likely be impacted by this election.
Equality Under the Law
First, will we have equality under the law? No carve-outs or exceptions to laws that are made, nor laws made specifically benefiting individual groups, and laws being applied equally to all. Creating groups promotes division, jealousy, envy, and strife. Why? Because it treats people differently. It incents us to turn toward man for answers instead of our Creator, and in turn limits fulfilling our purpose. To see the truth in this we need look no further than the divisions existing among us today. Divisions that are growing, exacerbated by the current administration’s actions and policies. It is sad to see.
It doesn’t matter whether the ideology is one of fascism/nationalism as in the early 20th century, communism/socialism as in the last half of the 20th century, or the progressivism/Islamism we face today. They all come from the same root, that people exist to serve their government and control is exerted by creating division, which in turn generates dependence.
On the other hand being a single people, focused on our Creator first, should promote unity, morality, charity, and self-sacrifice. This founding principle is one critical to the long-term success of any people. Why? Because we are led to something greater than ourselves, and each one of us is recognized as having the same nature. We are all equal in this respect. This approach also leads to independence. Does this mean we are perfect at achieving it. Of course not, but what matters is we are trying to head in the right direction. Does this mean only Christians can achieve this. Also certainly not. It is the underlying philosophy that matters. Whether you believe or not, your Creator is always right beside you. However, I do think it will be somewhat easier for believers as it is more likely they will be focused on their Creator first, instead of man.
Government’s primary purpose under this principle is to administer justice, as the government exists to serve its people. Notice that government only steps in when one person fails to recognize, or acts against, another person’s rights to begin with. The people are the primary source of justice, which can only happen if they have a moral basis as both individuals and a people.
The Separation of Church and State
The second item is the separation of church and state, but not in the manner the media and pundits generally talk about today. Whatever separation was originally intended was meant to protect the church from state corruption and influence—the very opposite of what we usually hear and see today—but what our Founders observed first-hand. While the church was to be protected from the state, the church was to have an indirect influence on the state through the morality it instilled in the people (see above). Religion is not to be integrated into the state, but the principles underlying religion are to be a part of our society’s foundations, and our Founders selected the principles found within Judeo-Christian tenets for that moral basis. Will the church remain separate from the state, or become subservient to it?
The third item is related to the previous one, will religious liberty be protected? As noted above, all forms of collectivism (communism, fascism, progressivism, etc.) place their focus on man. Under any of these ideologies, the belief in a Creator must be removed, or greatly limited, as references to any after-life are considered a threat to the state’s authority. Man’s arrogance in placing himself above his Creator. The one exception to this is Islam. Islam is not just an ideology, but an ideology with a religious facet. Within this Ideology the state’s sole purpose is to ensure that Islam’s requirements are carried out. A perfect melding of state and church into a single entity. It, and the other collective ideologies just mentioned, are all incompatible with and contrary to our founding principles.
Our Founders chose Judeo-Christian principles and these center on loving God and loving one’s fellow man. This is framed by their belief in Creator given rights that included life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness which all have their basis in love. Life is existence, and life’s sole source is our Creator. Liberty is the gift from our Creator to make our own decisions and be free from political tyranny. It is inherent in the gift of free will necessary to fulfill our purpose. The pursuit of happiness is the opportunity to know Him, which is why we were given His image during our creation. I know some will say this last item refers to material things, but it is clear from the early church fathers that genuine happiness only occurs when we first have a relationship with our Creator. Only then do we become good stewards of the material and spiritual blessings we each receive.
Rights and Responsibilities
All citizens not only have the right to vote, they have a duty to do so. All rights carry with them responsibilities. One cannot focus on one part and ignore the other without getting off track. This is one reason we’ve arrived at the place we are today. We’ve focused on our rights and not accepted our responsibilities. This is taking the easy path, that of allowing government to attempt carrying out things that are our responsibility – and for which we will ultimately be held accountable. Government is a poor steward. Look at the mess we have today; a weak economy, a significantly greater gap in wealth distribution, and unsustainable amounts of debt. All created by its incompetence, and prolonged and worsened by progressive policies.
Our compassion is also being used against us because we’ve forgotten what it really means to be focused on our purpose, what it truly means to be charitable. This is a subject of my new book Collectivism and Charity. I hope that you will check it out. More importantly, I hope that you will vote your conscience in the upcoming election.
I believe principles do matter, just consider the revelations occurring over the last several months. The Clinton emails, the subsequent investigation, the planned undermining of the Catholic and Evangelical churches, and the recent sexual abuse charges against Donald Trump. This is evidence of a society that is either losing or has lost its guiding principles. We have two very flawed candidates at the top of both tickets, but very clear and contrary platforms that lay out each party’s agenda. This video outlines the major differences in less than three minutes, and is worth a look. I hope that you will vote, but also understand what it is you are voting for. That too is a part of your responsibility.