Real crime, real corruption 0

And no indictment?

Julian Assange of Wikileaks talks to the notorious John Pilger, who is unimportant in this clip and doesn’t say much.

Assange accuses Hillary Clinton of criminal corruption, referring to one of her emails in his possession which, he says, is “the most significant email in the whole collection”.

Posted under corruption, Crime, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United States, Videos by Jillian Becker on Friday, June 23, 2017

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The president, the scandal, the crimes 1

A criminal president? Is there evidence of his crimes?

Oh, yes.

From PowerLine, by John Hinderaker:

There is a deep irony in the fact that Democrats are hysterically demanding investigations of President Trump and his campaign team, and in fact multiple investigations are now in progress, even though there is zero evidence that [he or] anyone associated with [him] has done anything wrong. On the other hand, we now know for certain that the Obama administration weaponized the intelligence agencies in order to use them against political opponents, in a manner that is unprecedented, highly dangerous to our democracy, and criminal.

This scandal, which dwarfs anything of which the Trump team is even suspected, has been exposed and lies largely in plain sight for all to see. Yet it has generally been greeted with yawns, if acknowledged at all, by politicians and commentators.

The writer recalls the “single bugging of the political opposition” that brought down the presidency of President Nixon.

In the light of that, Obama should surely be held accountable for his  “program of massively spying on political opponents” in clear violation of the law.   

Not only did Obama’s administration commit these crimes, but it “then lied about its actions“.

A respected federal judge, serving on the FISA court, has leveled a very serious charge against Barack Obama and his administration – more serious than any charge that was made, let alone proved, against Richard Nixon. The Obama administration was guilty of an “institutional lack of candor,” which is a polite way of saying that it lied to the court about what it was doing. And what it was doing, was violating the constitutional rights of Americans. Donald Trump and his associates have been accused of nothing even remotely as serious.

John Solomon’s and Sara Carter’s report that revealed these facts is quoted:

The admitted violations undercut one of the primary defenses that the intelligence community and Obama officials have used in recent weeks to justify their snooping into incidental NSA intercepts about Americans. … The American Civil Liberties Union said the newly disclosed violations are some of the most serious to ever be documented and strongly call into question the U.S. intelligence community’s ability to police itself and safeguard Americans’ privacy as guaranteed by the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment protections against unlawful search and seizure.

The Department of Justice needs to get to the bottom of Obama’s abuse of the intelligence agencies and the FBI.

That abuse was criminally compounded when Obama administration officials leaked classified information to the Washington Post and the New York Times in order to damage political opponents. We know for certain that felonies have been committed, so someone should go to jail.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions needs to ask: What did President Obama know, and when did he know it? Who else in his administration was responsible for the scandal? Where criminal prosecution is warranted, it is up to Justice to bring the cases. …

It is. So what is Attorney General Jeff Sessions doing about this?

Congress [too] should set investigations in motion. The public needs to know not only who committed crimes, but how deep the corruption went inside the Obama administration. And Congress needs to address, seriously, the question whether our politicized intelligence agencies can continue to exist in their present form. 

As for President Trump, firing James Comey didn’t go anywhere near far enough. Heads should roll at the CIA, the NSA and the FBI. Those who are tainted with the abuses that took place during the Obama administration should be shown the door and, where crimes have been committed, prosecuted.

Justice would be most satisfactorily served if those heads rolled. After fair trial, of course, of course. Always “innocent until proved guilty”. All the safeguards scrupulously observed  … yes, yes. And then –

Oh to hear the slamming of the cell doors!

Posted under corruption, Crime, Law, United States by Jillian Becker on Wednesday, May 31, 2017

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House Democrats have cause to fear blackmail 1

Yet more criminals in the Democratic Party and their employees are getting away free as air.

Luke Rosiak reports at The Daily Caller:

Five members of a Pakistani family under criminal investigation for allegedly misusing their positions as computer administrators for dozens of Democrats in the House of Representatives were paid at least $4 million from July 2009 to the present, The Daily Caller News Foundation’s Investigative Group has learned.

Evidence suggests some of the dozens of House Democrats — many of whom serve on the intelligence, homeland security and foreign affairs committees — who employed the suspects were inexplicably paying people they rarely or never saw. See the interactive graphic at the end of this story for the names of the employing representatives.

The suspects had full access to the emails and office computer files of the members for whom they worked.  A focus of the investigation by the U.S. Capitol Police is an off-site server on which congressional data was allegedly loaded without the knowledge of authorities.

Even before Capitol Police told chiefs of staff for the employing Democrats Feb. 2 that the Awans — including brothers Imran, Abid and Jamal, and two of their wives, Hina Alvi and Natalia Sova — were suspects in a criminal theft and cybersecurity probe, there were multiple signs that something was amiss.

For example, four of the 500 highest-paid House staffers are suspects, according to the DCNF’s analysis of payroll records. There are more than 15,000 congressional staff employees with an average age of 31, according to Legistorm.

Top slots on Capitol Hill are subject to fierce competition, and for most employees, the hours are long and job security is nonexistent. The median salary for legislative assistants is $43,000 annually, according to InsideGov.com.

Imran Awan has collected $1.2 million in salary since 2010, and his brother Abid and wife Hina Alvi were each paid more than $1 million.

Imran first came to Capitol Hill in the early 2000s and Abid joined him in 2005. Imran’s wife Hina Alvi was added to the payroll in 2007, while Abid’s wife, Natalia Sova, appeared in 2011. Finally, in 2014 the youngest sibling, Jamal, joined the payroll in 2014 at the age of 20 with a salary of $160,000.

“In Imran’s wife’s offices, she didn’t show up or rarely showed up and Imran would handle it,” a former House staffer with direct knowledge of the brothers told TheDCNF. “Once in a while he would take her around to the offices but after a while he stopped even putting up the illusion and did all that stuff himself.”

The former staffer said “Jamal was always there,” but Imran would only work “odd hours.”

Since 2003, the family has collected $5 million overall, with Imran making $2 million and Abid making $1.5 million, according to Legistorm.com, which tracks congressional staff data. Of some 25,000 people who have worked in the House since 2010, only 100 have taken home more than Imran.

As “shared” employees, their salaries were cobbled together with part-time payments from multiple members, with a result that the Awans appeared at one time or another on an estimated 80 House Democrats’ payrolls.

Yet the brothers spent significant time in Pakistan, TheDCNF was told. They even had time beginning in 2009 to operate a Northern Virginia car dealership, with Abid as its day-to-day manager. The dealership received a $100,000 loan that was never repaid from Dr. Ali Al-Attar, a onetime Iraqi politician who fled the U.S. on tax charges and who reportedly has links to the terrorist group Hezbollah.

Among the House Democrats employing the Awans was Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the former Democratic National Committee Chairman whose tenure there was marked by a disastrous email hack that she blamed on the Russians.

Some of the House Democrats terminated the suspects on their payrolls following the meeting with investigators, but it’s uncertain how many have done so.

Court documents show that Imran was flush with enough cash to loan $30,000 to a friend. Yet Abid declared bankruptcy in 2012, discharging debts to others while keeping retaining ownership of two houses.

The “interactive graphic” follows which lists the Democrats who paid the Awans.

The media in general have not considered the story worth reporting. But here are the headlines of other articles in the Daily Caller on this subject.  [Go here for the links.]

House Intelligence, Foreign Affairs Committee Members Compromised By Rogue IT Staff

Brothers Had Massive Debts, Years Of Suspicious Activity

…Secretly Took $100K In Iraqi Money

…Owed Money To Hezbollah-Connected Fugitive

Received $4 Million From Dem Reps

…Allegedly Kept Stepmom In ‘Captivity’ To Access Offshore Cash

…Also Had Access To DNC Emails…Could Read Every Email Dozens Of Congressmen Sent And Received

Paul Ryan: Capitol Police Getting ‘Assistance’ On Criminal Investigation

Read the Court Docs Detailing Greed, Ruthlessness of Democratic IT Guy

House IT Aides Fear Suspects In Hill Breach Are Blackmailing Members With Their Own Data

Suspect Has Fled To Pakistan, Relative Says

Since news of their criminal activity became public knowledge despite House Democrats trying to cover it up, the Awans have fled to Pakistan.

Here is the report headlined:  House IT Aides Fear Suspects In Hill Breach Are Blackmailing Members With Their Own Data

Again Luke Rosiak reports:

Congressional technology aides are baffled that data-theft allegations against four former House IT workers — who were banned from the congressional network — have largely been ignored, and they fear the integrity of sensitive high-level information.

Imran Awan and three relatives were colleagues until police banned them from computer networks at the House of Representatives after suspicion the brothers accessed congressional computers without permission.

Five Capitol Hill technology aides told The Daily Caller News Foundation’s Investigative Group that [Democratic] members of Congress have displayed an inexplicable and intense loyalty towards the suspects who police say victimized them. The baffled aides wonder if the suspects are blackmailing representatives based on the contents of their emails and files, to which they had full access.

A manager at a tech-services company that works with Democratic House offices said he approached congressional offices, offering their services at one-fourth the price of Awan and his Pakistani brothers, but the members declined. At the time, he couldn’t understand why his offers were rejected but now he suspects the Awans exerted some type of leverage over members.

“There’s no question about it: If I was accused of a tenth of what these guys are accused of, they’d take me out in handcuffs that same day, and I’d never work again,” he said.

The Awans’ ban sent 20 members searching for new IT workers, but another contractor claims he’s had difficulty convincing offices to let him fill the void, even when he seemed like a shoo-in. He says he has the sense some members wrongly believed that he blew the whistle on the Awans’ theft and they were angry at him for it.

Politico reported the Awan crew is “accused of stealing equipment from members’ offices without their knowledge and committing serious, potentially illegal, violations on the House IT network”. 

A House IT employee who requested anonymity said tech workers who have taken over some of those offices found that computers … sent all data to an offsite server in violation of House policies. Additionally, staffers’ iPhones were all linked to a single non-government iTunes account.

Awan began working for Democratic Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida in 2005, and his wife, his brother’s wife, and two of his brothers all appeared on the payrolls of various House Democrats soon after, payroll records show. They have collected $4 million since 2010.

For years, it was widely known that Awan, and eventually his 20-year-old brother Jamal, did the bulk of the work for various offices, while no-show employees were listed on members’ staffs in order to collect additional $165,000 salaries, workers said. This circumvented a rule that prevents any one staffer from making more than members of Congress.

Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the corrupt former chairperson on the DNC, wants her computer back. The police want to keep it while they investigate the crimes of the Awan family.  She must fear that they will find something on it that could incriminate her.

Here is the video record of her threatening the police with “consequences” if they do not return her “equipment”. The relevant altercation begins at the 3 minute mark:

Robert Mueller: the fix is in 4

Mueller and Comey: Two Denizens of the Swamp

The very fact that many voices were raised on the Left and among “NeverTrumpers” in praise of Robert Mueller should have been a warning sign to Republicans that he is not the right person to appoint as “special counsellor” to investigate allegations against President Trump. The allegations themselves are little more than slanderous rumors (summed up in the article quoted below as “Russia-gate”). Congressional committees are looking into them. No “special counsellor” was needed. But if there was going to be one, whose job must necessarily involve investigating the decisions and actions of the recently fired FBI chief  James Comey, why choose a former director of the FBI itself and a buddy of Comey?

Cliff Kincaid writes at Canada Free Press:

The Washington Post, a mouthpiece for Obama holdovers in the CIA and other agencies, reports that “sources” say a current White House official is under investigation as “a significant person of interest” in Russia-gate, but that the sources “would not further identify the official”.

This is a case of anonymous officials talking about an anonymous official.

Interestingly, the term “person of interest” was used by the FBI against scientist Steven Hatfill in the post-9/11 anthrax letters case. He was totally innocent and the Department of Justice paid him $5.8 million in damages.

After dismissing Hatfill and several others as suspects, the FBI blamed a dead U.S. Army scientist, Bruce Ivins. However, evidence indicates that the more likely culprits were al-Qaeda operatives who got the anthrax from a U.S. lab. The truth was too embarrassing for the FBI to reveal.

Read more details about the anthrax case in the full article here.

The new Russia-gate special counsel, former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, presided over this fiasco. What’s more, Mueller was sued for malfeasance in the case by FBI agent Richard Lambert who was put in charge of the anthrax investigation.

Yet, here is what we read about Mueller, who was FBI director under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama:

  • “Widely respected by members of both parties” and “an unflinching advocate for facts,” claims The New York Times.
  • “Skilled and upright,” writes Kimberley A. Strassel of The Wall Street Journal.
  • “Widely respected” and “highly regarded by both parties,” writes Andrew McCarthy of National Review.
  • “Uniquely suited to the task,” says The Washington Post.

These comments reflect the consensus of what President Trump would call the “swamp.”

A New York Times editorial was titled “Robert Mueller: The Special Counsel America Needs”. Making no mention of the anthrax debacle, it called Mueller “one of the few people with the experience, stature and reputation to see the job through”.

The New York Times trusts him. To do what? What else but to find something damaging against President Trump? If it didn’t trust him to do that, it wouldn’t praise him.

A far different opinion is offered by Carl M. Cannon, executive editor and Washington Bureau chief of RealClearPolitics, who noted that the FBI director fired by Trump, James Comey, and Mueller “have a long history as professional allies. For Mueller to be brought in to investigate the behavior of the guy who sacked Comey seems a conflict of interest.”

Cannon pointed to their work on the anthrax case, saying, “Comey and Mueller badly bungled the biggest case they ever handled. They botched the investigation of the 2001 anthrax letter attacks that took five lives and infected 17 other people…”

Like Mueller, Comey, who was deputy attorney general, declared Hatfill guilty.

President Trump has called James Comey a nut-job. We think that is a fair description, considering his extremely odd behavior. Reviewing it, we too have concluded that James Comey is deranged.

Leaving aside Comey’s mishandling of another major investigation, the Hillary emails, consider his conduct and behavior.

While President Trump has been attacked for calling Comey a “nut job” and “crazy,” Comey friend Benjamin Wittes says the former FBI director tried to hide in the curtains during a White House visit for a ceremony honoring law enforcement officials who provided security at the inauguration.

Weird! But he did not even try to hide behind curtains, which may have actually hidden him. He apparently tried to hide in front of them because he was wearing dark blue and the curtains are dark blue, and he so he imagined himself to be camouflaged. Even weirder!  

 

The New York Times reported, “Mr. Comey — who is 6 feet 8 inches tall and was wearing a dark blue suit that day — told Mr. Wittes that he tried to blend in with the blue curtains in the back of the room, in the hopes that Mr. Trump would not spot him and call him out.”

Was the 6 foot 8 inch Comey so crazy that he went to a White House event with Trump but tried to hide from him in the drapes?

Wittes, in his own words, says that Comey: “Felt that he could not refuse a presidential invitation, particularly not one that went to a broad array of law enforcement leadership. So he went. But as he told me the story, he tried hard to blend into the background and avoid any one-on-one interaction. He was wearing a blue blazer and noticed that the drapes were blue. So he stood in the back, right in front of the drapes, hoping Trump wouldn’t notice him camouflaged against the wall. If you look at the video, Comey is standing about as far from Trump as it is physically possible to be in that room.”

However, Comey was wearing a red tie that stood out like a sore thumb. His suit was darker than the drapes. Plus, Comey is so tall that he is hard to ignore, even with drapes behind him. Frankly this is nothing more than a diversion from the real issue—FBI corruption.

Reporters would rather write about the drapes than investigate the corruption under Comey and his predecessor, Mueller.

“Corruption under Comey and his predecssor, Mueller.”  Now Mueller is to investigate corruption under Comey? And that guarantees a totally unprejudiced finding?

Who is Benjamin Wittes? He is the co-author of The Future of Violence: Robots and Germs, Hackers and Drones — Confronting A New Age of Threat. He discusses the anthrax attacks in the book.

Five years after the FBI “closed” the case, Wittes doesn’t seem to accept the verdict that Bruce Ivins was the villain. He refers to Ivins as the FBI’s “suspect,” quickly adding, “or whoever else may have been responsible for the attacks”.

So why didn’t Comey reopen the case? One possible explanation is that he didn’t want to upset Mueller and the FBI officials who engaged in the cover-up. He had approved their targeting of, and conclusions about, Hatfill.

In return, Mueller, as special counsel in Russia-gate, can be expected to do Comey a big favor. He will not probe Comey’s malfeasance in using the phony “Trump Dossier” to investigate President Trump and his team. That is the real story — how Hillary donors financed by pro-Russian interests hired a former British agent to concoct an assortment of charges against Trump.

One has only to read the dossier (here) to see what a load of nonsense the concocted assortment of charges really is.

Mueller is a company man; he will protect the FBI and its former director and friend. The fix is in.

This is a far more important story than Comey hiding in the drapes. Writing about drapes may sound silly, but it is yet another way for the media to suggest that Comey was afraid of Trump trying to influence his inquiry into Russia-gate.

The story is not how Trump influenced the investigation, but rather how Comey used the phony “Trump Dossier” to go down dead-end roads and produce no results. It’s the anthrax investigation all over again.

Mueller’s job is to pump life into Comey’s fiasco, and turn the tables on Trump for firing Comey.

Meanwhile, corruption in the FBI goes unreported, and Congress fails to do adequate oversight of the intelligence community, which is supposed to keep us safe.

Mueller has fooled a lot of people. His appointment is good news for the Swamp but bad news for Trump.

Carl M. Cannon seems to think the outcome is preordained, noting the attitude of “official Washington” and what the “insiders” want to see happen — impeachment leading to Trump’s ouster. 

*

Update:

Headline:

Comey will speak to special counsel Mueller before testifying publicly, Chaffetz says

Read the story – manifesting not the least trace of suspicionhere.

To Haiti cholera, to the Clintons, profit 2

It is not remarkable or surprising to read this account of just some of the IMMENSE AND APPALLING HARM that the United Nations does.

Nor is it surprising to read that the Clintons profit from the harm.

What is surprising is to learn that the New York Times, National Public Radio and CNN actually reported the harm, and the Huffington Post actually criticized the UN and the corrupt firms and organizations that profited from it.

And it’s utterly astonishing to be told that the UN admitted that the 150,000 or so peacekeepers it sends out into the world each year have done so much harm that the UN cannot allow a single claim for compensation to be met because it would be a precedent for an untold number of other such claims. 

From Disobedient Media by Elizabeth Vos:

After earthquakes, hurricanes, and United Nations sex rings have ravaged Haiti, it might be fair to call the locale a hell on earth. In the aftermath of the massive 2010 earthquake, the UN further deteriorated the situation by introducing cholera to the poverty stricken nation. Six years would pass before the U.N. admitted its role in bringing the infection to Haiti.

In the intervening years, thousands of Haitians died from the infection that spread uncontrollably through lack of infrastructure and poor medical treatment. While shockingly little was done by the United Nations in response to the disaster, the tragedy allowed micro-lenders and re-insurers to quickly move in, profiting where critics say aid organizations should have provided help.

The United Nations dispatched peacekeepers to aid the recovery process after a severe earthquake struck Haiti in 2010. Unfortunately the peacekeepers added to the Haitian death toll after introducing cholera to the already devastated environment, apparently brought over by UN peacekeepers from Nepal. It was not until 2016 that the UN finally admitted responsibility for the outbreak. Cholera was not the only plague brought to Haiti by U.N. peacekeepers. As previously reported by Disobedient Media, peacekeepers were revealed to have also been operating a Haitian sex ring in the country from 2004 to 2007.

Bill Clinton was appointed as the United Nation’s special envoy to Haiti at the time of the cholera outbreak, but immediately focused on helping negotiate the release of child trafficker Laura Silsby and her co-defendants before giving attention to Haiti’s plethora of other issues.

Just over ten thousand Haitians are officially reported to have died as a result of the cholera epidemic. However, a study conducted by Doctors Without Borders estimated that this figure may represent a vast underestimation of the death toll. The New York Times reported the results “could multiply the known death toll by roughly a factor of three, at least in the first six months of the epidemic, when it was most intense.” Many of those who died never made it to hospitals, where official counts of the dead were made.

Seven years after it was introduced, cholera is still endemic in Haiti. The United Nations has provided no financial reparations to the victims of the illness and their families. Haitian cholera victims have sued the United Nations in hope of achieving some compensation; so far the absolute diplomatic immunity of the UN has been upheld.

NPR reported that victims want the U.N. to end cholera by installing a national water and sanitation system; paying reparations to cholera victims and their families and publicly apologizing for bringing cholera to Haiti.

U.N. officials’ were cited as fearing that if the Haitian plaintiffs succeed in piercing the agency’s cloak of immunity, it would open the way to unlimited lawsuits seeking compensation for acts of the U.N. or the 150,000 peacekeeping forces it sends out into the world each year.

The UN’s reticence to aid Haitian cholera victims contradicts its central platform promising to uphold human rights. While the country still lacks proper sanitary conditions and medical care, CNN reported that the World Health Organization planned to send one million doses of cholera vaccine to Haiti, adding that there were still: “770 new cases per week in 2016″.

Less than a year after the cholera outbreak, microfinancers and re-insurers including Swiss Re, Fonkoze, Mercy Corp partnered with the Clinton Global Initiative to create the Microinsurance Catastrophe Risk Organization (MiCRO). At this time Haiti still lacked basic sanitation. Mercy Corp is Chaired by Linda A. Mason, who also co-founded Bright Horizons, a large child care organization that has previously operated in Haiti with Mercy Corp.

Disobedient Media has previously reported on Swiss Re’s involvement with a land grabbing scandal targeting impoverished farmers in Brazil. The report highlighted close financial ties that Swiss Re had to investors George Soros and Warren Buffet. The George Soros Foundation is a major investor in Leapfrog Investments, a private equity firm. Other investors in Leapfrog Investments include the European Investment Bank, JP Morgan, Prudential Financial, Metlife, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, and most significantly the TIAA [Financial Services] and Swiss Re. Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. also sank billions into Swiss Re in 2009. Buffet has since offloaded a portion of his stake in Swiss Re in 2015, ending a five year long tenure as the reinsurance group’s largest investor.

On the surface, it appeared that microfinance would benefit Haitians. However, re-insurance and microfinance are for-profit business models, not to be conflated with the work of aid groups. According to an article published by the Standford Social Innovation Review, “in some instances microcredit makes life at the bottom of the pyramid worse… in contrast to nonprofit organizations, commercial banks that make microloans typically provide only financial services.

Indonesia’s Bank Rakyat, Ecuador’s Bank Pichincha, and Brazil’s Unibanco all directly target poor customers.” The apparent inability of microfinance to improve the lives of the impoverished it targets has led to detractors denouncing it as a means of de-facto economic enslavement.

The presence of microfinancing groups in Haiti as the UN failed to intervene during the cholera outbreak raises questions in regards to profits these groups may have made in the wake of disasters, be they natural or man-made.

In 2012, the Huffington Post cited critics who speculated that cholera had introduced a profit motive for international reinsurersand asked why Haitians should pay for cholera insurancewhen the United Nations has yet to make reparations for a disease it introduced to a country that had never before experienced this strain of cholera and no other cholera infections for over a century.

The affair raises serious concerns about whether or not insurance and reinsurance firms used the UN-created crisis to profit, and highlights the endemic problems that the involvement of special interests can cause in humanitarian aid work.

Let us sum up what happened:

The UN introduced cholera to poverty-stricken, earthquake and hurricane tormented Haiti.

Insurance companies extract insurance from Haitians to “protect” them from all such “catastrophe risk”.

George Soros, Warren Buffet, Bill and Hillary Clinton profit. 

Haitians continue to die of cholera and are even poorer.

Whodunnit? A new James Comey mystery 4

James Comey, Director of the FBI, continues to be enigmatic. (For our earlier ruminations on him, see here and here.)

Whom or what is he for and against?

Whom, in his own mind, does he serve? To what end?

Bizpac Review reports:

Rep. Trey Gowdy [R-SC] questioned FBI Director James Comey Monday [March 20, 2017] during a House Intelligence Committee hearing about leaks of classified information to the media.

In reference to the taped call between Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn and the Russian ambassador, the South Carolina lawmaker grilled Comey about who can “unmask” a U.S. citizen when collecting intelligence.

Gowdy would later point out that making a person’s identity publicly known when protected by law is a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison. He asked how many people are able to unmask a person and what other agencies have the authority to do so — besides the FBI, Comey named the NSA, CIA and the Justice Department.

He also said the White House can request the agency collecting the intelligence to unmask a person, but said they can’t do it on their own.

Gowdy named a number of people from the Obama administration, to include former national security adviser Susan Rice, former Attorney General Loretta Lynch and then-acting Attorney General Sally Yates, all of whom Comey confirmed would likely have had access to the name of an unmasked U.S. citizen.

He asked Comey if he briefed former President Barack Obama on any calls involving Flynn, but the director would not comment on his conversations with Obama.

Gowdy proceeded with the precision of a surgeon in discussing “nefarious motives” for leaking Flynn’s name, none of which reflected well on the last administration.

Regardless, Comey would not confirm whether an investigation into who unmasked Flynn is underway, although he confirmed earlier the bureau is investigating Trump campaign ties to Russia.

So he was happy to confirm that the FBI is investigating “Trump campaign ties to Russia” – which have not been found, though the investigation has been going on since July 2016. By doing so he is thickening the cloud of suspicion that the Democratic Party has created in its efforts to destroy the Trump presidency.

But he would not say whether an investigation is underway into the only known felony that has certainly been committed in connection with this evil Leftist conspiracy – the betrayal of the American citizen Michael Flynn to the Democratic Party’s toady press; the “betrayal” being a report of a perfectly legitimate conversation between Flynn as a member of the Trump campaign when Donald Trump was president-in-waiting and a diplomat with whom he had official business. The crime was the leaking of the intercepted conversation to the New York Times and the Washington Post. It needs to be investigated, the leaker needs to be arrested and tried – but that is something that the head of the FBI does not feel he can talk about to the people’s representatives in a Congressional hearing.

So there is a long ongoing investigation into alleged nefarious activity where not a trace of evidence for any wrong-doing has been found in eight months, and the head of the FBI can announce that fact to all the world. But he cannot say whether or not his bureau of investigation is looking into a serious crime, known to have taken place, that affects the democratic processes on which the government of the country depends?

Why? Why is the great detective openly chasing after a shadow while apparently ignoring a crime?

And why has President Trump kept this man Comey in his job?

Posted under corruption, Crime, United States by Jillian Becker on Tuesday, March 21, 2017

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President Trump out-maneuvers the liars and cheats 1

President Trump has beautifully, elegantly, brilliantly finessed his enemies.

By taking the New York Times at its word that his communications were intercepted last year, Trump has forced the NYT either to take responsibility for exposing Obama’s scandalous activity, or to say that it was lying.

According to Andrew McCarthy (see our post immediately below, Now, President Trump, hit back), the Obama administration sought and eventually obtained FISA (the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) authorization to conduct the wire-tapping.

For what purposes can such FISA authorization be obtained?  And by whom?

From Wikipedia:

The President may authorize, through the Attorney General, electronic surveillance without a court order for the period of one year, provided that it is only to acquire foreign intelligence information, that it is solely directed at communications or property controlled exclusively by foreign powers, that there is no substantial likelihood that it will acquire the contents of any communication to which a United States person is a party, and that it be conducted only in accordance with defined minimization procedures.

The code defines “foreign intelligence information” to mean information necessary to protect the United States against actual or potential grave attack, sabotage or international terrorism.

“Foreign powers” means a foreign government, any faction of a foreign nation not substantially composed of U.S. persons, and any entity directed or controlled by a foreign government. The definition also includes groups engaged in international terrorism and foreign political organizations. The sections of FISA authorizing electronic surveillance and physical searches without a court order specifically exclude their application to groups engaged in international terrorism.

A “U.S. person” includes citizens, lawfully admitted permanent resident aliens, and corporations incorporated in the United States.

“Minimization procedures” is defined to mean procedures that minimize the acquisition of information concerning United States persons, allow the retention of information that is evidence of a crime, and require a court order be obtained in order to retain communication involving a United States person for longer than 72 hours.

The Attorney General is required to make a certification of these conditions under seal to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, and report on their compliance to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.

Under the FISA act, anyone who engages in electronic surveillance except as authorized by statute is subject to both criminal penalties and civil liabilities.

So if the New York Times was correct, President Obama’s Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, authorized electronic surveillance of communication devices in Donald Trump’s offices, on the grounds that her Department of Justice had provable grounds for suspicion that Donald Trump, the Republican candidate for the presidency, was one side of a conspiracy to mount “grave attack, sabotage, or international terrorism” against the United States – even though there was “substantial likelihood” that by doing so she would “acquire the contents of … communication(s) to which a United States person” – Donald Trump personally or an associate of his – was a party”.

If that’s what she did, she broke the law.

If she gathered any information from FISA-authorized wire-tapping,  and retained it for more than an allowed 72 hours, or disseminated it to persons who illegally leaked it to the media, she broke the law.

If any of this happened, then there was a deep-laid plot by the Obama administration to destroy Donald Trump’s reputation and wreck his presidency should he be elected.

But then again, maybe the wire-tapping never happened, in which case the New York Times was lying – not at all an implausible probability.

Matthew Vadum writes at Front Page:

President Donald Trump caused a media firestorm by claiming over the weekend that then-President Obama wire-tapped telephones at Trump Tower in Manhattan during the final leg of last year’s election campaign.

Seeing the writing on the wall, tainted FBI Director James Comey promptly and publicly urged the Department of Justice to reject Trump’s claims. Although it is an attempt at a cover-up, it is an admirably transparent one.

Now the outlines of a Watergate-like conspiracy are emerging in which a sitting Democrat president apparently used the apparatus of the state to spy on a Republican presidential candidate. Watergate differed in that President Nixon didn’t get involved in the plot against the Democratic National Committee until later as an accomplice after the fact. Here Obama likely masterminded, or oversaw someone like the diabolical Benghazi cover-up artist Ben Rhodes, masterminding the whole thing.

Throughout his agonizingly long presidency, Obama serially abused his powers as the nation’s Chief Executive to undermine his political opponents. It might be said that every day of his presidency he committed at least one impeachable offense.

Obama used the IRS to target conservative and Tea Party nonprofits, along with Catholic, Jewish, and pro-Israel organizations. He brazenly lied about it, too. His Justice Department surreptitiously obtained telephone records for more than 100 reporters. … Books have been written about his corruption and many more such volumes will follow. …

A spokesman for Obama, who now lives in former Bill Clinton press secretary Joe Lockhart’s walled mansion with Valerie Jarrett on Washington’s Embassy Row so he can pursue his unprecedented, taxpayer-subsidized post-presidential war against Trump, denied Obama ordered that Trump Tower be wiretapped.

“A cardinal rule of the Obama administration was that no White House official ever interfered with any independent investigation led by the Department of Justice,” according to a carefully-worded statement. “As part of that practice, neither President Obama nor any White House official ever ordered surveillance on any U.S. citizen. Any suggestion otherwise is simply false.”

Of course, as others quickly pointed out, the denial is misdirection.

Former federal prosecutor Andrew C. McCarthy wrote yesterday that the denial “seems disingenuous on several levels”. When a warrant is obtained under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), “it is technically the FISA court that ‘orders’ surveillance”. Moreover, under the law, “it is the Justice Department, not the White House, that represents the government in proceedings before the FISA court”. 

McCarthy wrote presciently on Jan. 11: “The idea that FISA could be used against political enemies always seemed far-fetched. Now it might not be.”

Besides, Obama and his gang have generally been smart enough to hide their tracks when carrying out political dirty tricks. The Departments of Justice and Homeland Security, FBI, CIA, and NSA, aren’t headquartered in the White House. Obama could wage war against Trump by creating multiple layers of plausible deniability. That’s what a community organizer from Chicago does.

Predictably, former Obama speechwriter [Ben] Rhodes went on Twitter to lie. Replying to a Trump tweet, the Iranian mullahs’ best friend wrote, cheekily, that, “No President can order a wiretap. Those restrictions were put in place to protect citizens from people like you.” …

Most mainstream journalists were loath over the past eight years to call the exhaustively documented and at times bald-faced lies and misdeeds of President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Secretaries of State Hillary Clinton and John Kerry, National Security Advisor Susan Rice, Attorneys General Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch, and HHS Secretary Sebelius. It would seem uncovering government corruption is only a journalist’s duty when a Republican resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. …

Let’s recount what former British Member of Parliament Louise Mensch reported at Heat Street on Nov. 7, the day before the U.S. election.

Two separate sources with links to the counter-intelligence community have confirmed to Heat Street that the FBI sought, and was granted, a FISA court warrant in October, giving counter-intelligence permission to examine the activities of ‘U.S. persons’ in Donald Trump’s campaign with ties to Russia.

Contrary to earlier reporting in the New York Times, which cited FBI sources as saying that the agency did not believe that the private server in Donald Trump’s Trump Tower which was connected to a Russian bank had any nefarious purpose, the FBI’s counter-intelligence arm, sources say, re-drew an earlier FISA court request around possible financial and banking offenses related to the server. The first request, which, sources say, named Trump, was denied back in June, but the second was drawn more narrowly and was granted in October after evidence was presented of a server, possibly related to the Trump campaign, and its alleged links to two banks; SVB Bank and Russia’s Alfa Bank. While the Times story speaks of metadata, sources suggest that a FISA warrant was granted to look at the full content of emails and other related documents that may concern US persons.

The FBI agents who talked to the New York Times, and rubbished the ground-breaking stories of Slate (Franklin Foer) and Mother Jones (David Corn) may not have known about the FISA warrant, sources say, because the counter-intelligence and criminal sides of the FBI often work independently of each other employing the principle of ‘compartmentalization’.

… We already knew that days before Trump’s inauguration, it was reported that Obama green-lighted a disturbing relaxation of the rules regulating the National Security Agency’s ability to circulate globally intercepted personal communications among the other 16 intelligence agencies, some of which are more politicized than the NSA, before applying important longstanding privacy-protection protocols. Before the policy was altered, the NSA [had] screened out the identities of innocent people and irrelevant personal information before passing intercepted communications along to other agencies like the CIA or the FBI’s intelligence units.

Put another way, 17 days before President Trump was sworn in, NSA was unleashed against his embryonic administration, newly empowered to share raw intelligence gathered from telephone calls and emails that go through network switches outside the country, as well as messages between people outside the U.S. that go through domestic network switches.

WikiLeaks offered a refresher course in Obama’s treachery on Twitter Sunday, noting that “Obama has a history of tapping & hacking his friends and rivals”, and providing plenty of examples. …

And despite the growing mass media hysteria, there is still no publicly available evidence the Trump campaign somehow colluded with the Russian government last year. Sources in newspaper articles are never identified.

There is not a scintilla of proof of improper conduct.

All we have is the alleged say-so of faceless CIA spooks whose motives are questionable, to put it charitably.

Tom Shattuck writes at the Boston Herald:

In what has already been a historically bad year for Democrats, it just may be that they’re about to lose again to Donald Trump, this time in a high-stakes game of Russian roulette.

The Dems’ Putin smear was supposed to paint President Trump as a friend of the tyrant and beneficiary of Russian meddling in the election. Instead, it is the standard-bearer of the Democratic Party, former President Barack Obama, who may take the fall.

Snooping on a presidential candidate is serious business.

The Democrats want you to think this is a crazy conspiracy theory for an unhinged tweeting president.

But Obama has a rich legacy of using the federal government as a political weapon and it would be foolish to think he suddenly started restraining himself, when he was never held to account by either the media or Democrats in power.

Remember, Obama’s Justice Department secretly subpoenaed the private phone records of Associated Press editors and reporters. It was pure spying.

Fox News reporter James Rosen and his family were wiretapped.

Former CBS news reporter Sharyl Attkisson’s computer was hacked by the government.

Add to these incidents the harassment of conservative organizations by Obama’s IRS, and the mercenary nature of the Obama administration reveals itself.

We’re told Obama administration officials went to the FISA Court twice last year for warrants to conduct electronic surveillance on candidate Trump. Why?

The DNC leaks show that DNC staffers were formulating “Russia” attacks on Trump as far back as last April, with one email between two committee members reading “the pro-Russia stuff ties in pretty well to idea that Trump is too friendly with Putin/weak on Russia”.

Then there is the infamous “dossier” — anonymous reports that Trump campaign members were speaking to Russian officials with some frequency last year and the existence of wiretapped audio. …

The left wants to play the Russia game and President Trump should oblige.

There should be an immediate investigation, and we’ll see where the espionage trail leads. 

President Trump has requested the congressional intelligence committees “to determine whether executive branch investigative powers were abused in 2016”.

Barack Obama and Loretta Lynch would be foolish not to be afraid.

Now, President Trump, hit back! 5

The Left was able to make its “long march through the institutions” and finally achieve supreme power as the bureaucratic dictatorship of the European Union and the administration of Barack Obama in the United States, because the conservative Right let it.

The Left fights low and dirty. Conservative politicians, almost without exception, will not “descend to their level”. Conservatives and Republicans fight like gentlemen (and that includes the women except for Margaret the Great of England); which means to fight cleanly, respectfully, obeying the rules – of etiquette! The result was, the thugs on the Left won power.

Then Donald Trump barged on to the political stage.

Donald Trump wants to win, win he does, and win he shall.

But even now, one of his own chosen team, newly-appointed Attorney General Jeff Sessions, has let him down with etiquette! So of course President Trump is furious with Sessions for surrendering to the enemy, who is fighting lower and dirtier than ever.

Andrew McCarthy explains, writing at the National Review:

So, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has recused himself. Great! Just one question: From what? Yes, yes, Sessions is a good and decent man. He is a scrupulous lawyer who cares about his reputation. Thus, in stark contrast to Obama administration attorneys general, he strictly applied — I’d say he hyper-applied — the ethical standard that calls on a lawyer to recuse himself from a matter in which his participation as counsel would create the mere appearance of impropriety.

The standard is eminently sensible because the legitimacy of our judicial system depends not only on its actually being on the up and up but on its being perceived as such. If it looks like you’re conflicted, you step aside, period. Simple, right? Well . . . Much as I admire our AG’s virtue (and you know I do), let’s pause the preen parade for just a moment. There’s a tiny word in that just-described ethical standard that we need to take note of: matter. A lawyer doesn’t just recuse himself. He recuses himself from a legal matter — from participation in a case. When we are talking about the criminal law, that means recusal from a prospective prosecution. You need a crime for that. Prosecutors do not recuse themselves from fishing expeditions or partisan narratives. So . . . what is the crime?

We need to ask this question because, rest assured, this does not end with Jeff Sessions. No more than it ended with Mike Flynn. No more than it would end if the media-Democrat complex were to obtain the much coveted scalp of Steve Bannon, Kellyanne Conway, Seb Gorka, or one of the other Beltway gate-crashers we’ve come to know over the last six improbable months. The objective is President Trump: preferably, his impeachment and removal; but second prize, his mortal political wounding by a thousand cuts just in time for 2018 and 2020, would surely do. …

Impeachment cases do not just spontaneously appear. They have to be built over time, and with vigor, because most Americans — even those who oppose a president politically — do not want the wrenching divisiveness and national instability that impeachment unavoidably entails. The reluctant public must be convinced that there is urgency, that the [targeted] president’s demonstrated unfitness has created a crisis that must be dealt with. …

In the matter of Barack Obama, the GOP had an actual case based on systematic executive overreach and the empowering of America’s enemies, the kind of threat to the constitutional framework that induced Madison to regard the impeachment remedy as “indispensable”. Yet agitating for upheaval is against the Republican character (a generally good trait, though paralyzing in an actual crisis). …

Republicans had no stomach for mentioning impeachment, much less building a case. Democrats, by contrast, have an iron-cast stomach and an unseemly zeal for upheaval. They’re ready to build. All they lack is a case. No problem: They have made one up, and they are confident not only that they will build it into a national crisis of confidence in the presidency but that the Republicans will help them.

And lo and behold, Republicans are helping them. Unwittingly perhaps, but helping all the same.

Let’s try to keep our eye on the ball here. The “Russia hacked the election” narrative is laughably false. Russian intelligence, at most, hacked e-mail accounts of prominent Democrats during the campaign. That is not hacking the election, which would require manipulating the voting process. And it almost certainly had zero impact on the outcome of the election. Remember, these are the same Democrats who spent nearly two years telling you that Hillary Clinton’s own scandalous e-mails made no difference — she was going to glide to victory. Do they really expect you to believe she lost because of John Podesta’s comparatively benign e-mails? (Thought experiment: Outside us political wonks, what percentage of the American electorate actually knows who the hell John Podesta is?)

Let’s look hard at the farcical “Russia hacked the election” narrative and ask: Have any crimes been committed, and by whom? Yes, we know that crimes of hacking were committed. Again, this was not hacking of the election; it was hacking of Democrats, during the campaign, months before the election. Not only do we know there were hacking crimes; government investigators tell us they know exactly who did it: Russian intelligence services. That was what the FBI pronounced in the largely content-free report it released jointly with the CIA and NSA. Thus, the only apparent crimes have already been solved.

Not so fast,” you’re thinking, “what about collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians?” And why wouldn’t you ask that? After all, the media and Democrats have been hammering “Russia hacked the election” non-stop for three months; Mike Flynn has been ousted from his perch as national security adviser after meeting with a Russian ambassador; and now we have Jeff Sessions, after meeting with the very same Russian ambassador, recusing himself from . . . er . . . well . . . um . . . something, I guess. But what something? Is there any fire under all that smoke?

Start with this: There is no evidence — none, not a speck, not even a little one — that Donald Trump or anyone associated with him had anything whatsoever to do with the hacking of Democratic accounts. Remember, that’s the only crime here. And the Trump campaign had utterly nothing to do with it. We know this for two reasons.

First, in its ballyhooed report, the FBI told us not only that the Russians are the culprits but also that the Democrats were not the only targets. Putin’s regime, we are told, targeted both major parties. This was a Russian-government effort to compromise the American government, no matter which candidate ended up running it. It should come as no surprise, then, that the FBI made no allegation that Trump and his associates were complicit.

Second, it’s not like the FBI and the Obama Justice Department didn’t try to make a case against Trump. In fact, they scorched the earth. Besides the illegal leaks of classified information that have fueled the “Russia hacked the election” scam, this is the most outrageous and studiously unmentioned scandal of the election. While the commentariat was rending its garments over the mere prospect that Trump might have his political adversary, Hillary Clinton, investigated if he won the election, Obama was actually having Trump investigated.

To rehearse briefly, in the weeks prior to June 2016, the FBI did a preliminary investigation, apparently based on concerns about a server at Trump Tower that allegedly had some connection to Russian financial institutions. Even if there were such a connection, it is not a crime to do business with Russian banks — lots of Americans do. It should come as no surprise, then, that the FBI found no impropriety and did not proceed with a criminal investigation.

What is surprising, though, is that the case was not closed down. Instead, the Obama Justice Department decided to pursue the matter as a national-security investigation under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).

In June, it sought the FISA court’s permission to conduct surveillance on a number of Trump associates — and perhaps even Trump himself. It has been reported that Trump was “named” in the application, but it is not publicly known whether he (a) was named as a proposed wiretap target, or (b) was just mentioned in passing in the application. Understand the significance of this: Only the Justice Department litigates before the FISA court; this was not some rogue investigators; this was a high level of Obama’s Justice Department — the same institution that, at that very moment, was whitewashing the Clinton e-mail scandal. And when Justice seeks FISA surveillance authority, it is essentially telling that court that there is probable cause to believe that the targets have acted as agents of a foreign power — that’s the only basis for getting a FISA warrant. In this instance, the FISA court apparently found the Obama Justice Department’s presentation to be so weak that it refused to authorize the surveillance. That is telling, because the FISA court is generally very accommodating of government surveillance requests.

Unwilling to take no for an answer, the Obama Justice Department came back to the FISA court in October — i.e., in the stretch run of the presidential campaign. According to various reports (and mind you, FISA applications are classified, so the leaks are illegal), the October application was much narrower than the earlier one and did not mention Donald Trump. The FISA Court granted this application, and for all we know the investigation is continuing. There are two significant takeaways from this.

First, a FISA national-security investigation is not a criminal investigation. It is not a probe to uncover criminal activity; it is a classified effort to discover what a potentially hostile foreign government may be up to on American soil. It does not get an assigned prosecutor because the purpose is not to prove anything publicly in court — indeed, it is a major no-no for the Justice Department to use its FISA authority pretextually, for the real purpose of trying to build a criminal investigation.

Second, remember when the New York Times gleefully reported in mid January that three Trump associates — Paul Manafort (who was ousted as campaign manager in August), Manafort’s associate Roger Stone, and Trump’s investor friend Carter Page — were being investigated over alleged ties to Russia? Well, deep into the report, after all the heavy breathing about potential Trump–Russia ties, the Times report conceded that this investigation may very well have nothing to do with Trump, the presidential campaign, or Russian hacking. …

Bottom line: The Obama Justice Department and the FBI spent at least eight months searching for Trump–Russia ties. They found nothing criminal, and clearly nothing connecting Trump to Russian hacking. …

Where’s the crime?

And what else is propping up the “Russia hacked the election” narrative? First there is General Flynn. He had a conversation with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, during which Kislyak raised the subject of sanctions imposed earlier that day by Obama. But there was nothing illegal or improper about this conversation: Flynn was part of the Trump transition and about to become national security adviser, so he was supposed to be reaching out to foreign governments. And, as the New York Times acknowledged, though the FBI has a recording of the conversation (because the Russian ambassador was under surveillance), and though the Bureau, the Obama Justice Department, and what the Times gingerly called Obama’s “advisers” carefully combed over every word of it, Flynn made no commitments to address the Russian concerns — the Times: “Obama officials asked the FBI if a quid pro quo had been discussed on the call, and the answer came back no.” That is the main point. Flynn was not fired for speaking with the Russian ambassador. He was fired for failing to provide a competent summary of their conversation to senior Trump officials. Again: no crime, nothing to do with hacking, and nothing to do with the election.

And now, finally, we have Jeff Sessions. He, too, met with the Russian ambassador. But so, it appears, has most of Washington — including Democratic Washington and, in particular, the Obama White House, which Ambassador Sergey Kislyak evidently visited at least 22 times. Ironically, the overblown controversy surrounding Sessions this week was caused primarily by his haste to deny, forcefully, that he had any participation, as a Trump campaign surrogate, in communications with the Russian government regarding the 2016 election. This was the upshot of his response to a loaded question from Democratic senator Al Franken, who was relying on salacious allegations in a goofy and discredited dossier compiled for Trump opponents. Several media outlets had had access to the dossier for months but had not published it, despite their loathing of Trump, because its outlandish claims could not be substantiated.

In any event, Sessions, like Flynn, made the error of mis-describing his contacts with the Russian ambassador. That is unfortunate, but there was nothing remotely criminal or inappropriate about the contacts themselves.

To summarize, there is no crime here except the ones committed by Russian intelligence. There is no evidence that Trump or his associates had any complicity in those hacking crimes.

When all of the smoke is cleared away, the Democrats’ beef is that Trump may have benefited from Russia’s crimes. In reality, it is highly unlikely that the Russian hacking of Democratic e-mails had any effect on the outcome of the election. Even if we indulge the fantasy that it did, however, here’s the sad news the media won’t tell you: It is not a crime to benefit from other people’s crimes. No one should know this better than Democrats. They could not have been more thrilled when, during the late stages of the campaign, someone — perhaps not the Russians — illegally leaked some of Trump’s tax-return information. Had Mrs. Clinton won, no one would have said Trump was denied because of Clinton-campaign ties to tax outlaws. Nor would Trump have been heard to complain about Clinton-campaign ties to NBC, which leaked the infamous Trump–Billy Bush tape. Washington would have yawned, and then snickered that Republicans lost because they nominated a lousy candidate. Instead, Democrats lost because they nominated a lousy candidate. To end where we started, what is the crime? What is the crime Sessions must be recused from investigating?

What is the crime that a special counsel must be appointed to probe? There isn’t one. There’s nothing. But as the Democrats are showing, when your opposition is running scared, you can go a long way on nothing.

But President Trump is not “running scared”.

Remember this part of Andrew McCarthy’s article?:

The Obama Justice Department decided to pursue the matter as a national-security investigation under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). In June, it sought the FISA court’s permission to conduct surveillance on a number of Trump associates — and perhaps even Trump himself. … Understand the significance of this: Only the Justice Department litigates before the FISA court; this was not some rogue investigators; this was a high level of Obama’s Justice Department  … When Justice seeks FISA surveillance authority, it is essentially telling that court that there is probable cause to believe that the targets have acted as agents of a foreign power — that’s the only basis for getting a FISA warrant. In this instance, the FISA court apparently found the Obama Justice Department’s presentation to be so weak that it refused to authorize the surveillance. … Unwilling to take no for an answer, the Obama Justice Department came back to the FISA court in October — i.e., in the stretch run of the presidential campaign. According to various reports (and mind you, FISA applications are classified, so the leaks are illegal), the October application was much narrower than the earlier one and did not mention Donald Trump. The FISA Court granted this application.

It gives President Trump mighty cause for complaint. And complaining he is. 

Fox News reports:

President Trump tweeted:

How low has President Obama gone to tap my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergage. Bad (or sick) guy!

The White House has called for the US Congress to investigate President Donald Trump’s claim Barack Obama ordered Trump Tower to be “wiretapped” during the US election.

Former President Obama on Saturday denied President Trump’s accusation that Obama had Trump Tower phones tapped in the weeks before the November 2016 election.

No surprise there. Of course Obama denies it. But this time, at last, he may be caught out in a lie that even his toady media will not be able to cover up.

“Neither President Obama nor any White House official ever ordered surveillance on any U.S. citizen. Any suggestion otherwise is simply false,” said Kevin Lewis, a spokesman for the former president … A cardinal rule of the Obama administration was that no White House official ever interfered with any independent investigation led by the Department of Justice.”

Oh, a “cardinal rule”! Really? And what is any sort of rule to the Left? A thing to be broken.

And the wire-tapping is a scandal that is not merely to be complained about.

These quotations come from various articles at PowerLine:

This is the most explosive political allegation in many years, far more explosive than Watergate.

If the Obama administration abused the FISA process to wiretap a political opponent, it is a scandal of the first order – the worst political scandal of my lifetime, easily. And the press has known about it and covered it up? Unbelievable.

All too believable, we would say – though we agree it is a scandal of the first order.

There is no doubt that Obama’s Justice Department – the most corrupt and politicized Department of Justice in modern American history – obtained a FISA warrant to conduct surveillance on Trump associates, and possibly Trump himself, in the heat of the presidential campaign.

It is too late to impeach Obama, but the FISA application should be carefully reviewed, and if appropriate, the judges who issued the warrant should be investigated. If it was issued on partisan grounds, it is not too late to impeach the judges who authorized the improper wiretap.

This scandal cries out for aggressive investigation. Let’s see the initial FISA application, and the court order denying it. Then let’s see the second application, and the order that approved it. Let’s put the Obama administration officials who signed the applications under oath, and find out who put them up to it. Let’s find out what judges denied the first application, and what judges granted the second one. Let’s get the details on the Obama administration’s spying. Did they tap the Trump campaign’s telephones? If so, which lines? Did they hack into the Trump campaign’s servers? If so, which ones?

Obviously, as President Trump said, the Obama administration learned nothing of significance from its spying on the Trump campaign. But it now appears that the election of 2016 may have been hacked after all, in a far more meaningful way than an intrusion into [DNC chair] Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s email account. It may have been hacked by the Obama administration. We need to find out what happened. Congress should give top priority to this investigation.

TRUMP NEEDS TO APPOINT A SPECIAL PROSECUTOR TO INVESTIGATE. THIS IS A VERY SERIOUS CHARGE. [Capitals in the original]

The opportunity has come for Donald Trump to hit back at the slime-besmirched Obama gang.

Let him hit hard!

The desirable dissolution of Europe’s unnecessary union 3

Why was the corrupt and undemocratic European Union (EU) brought into existence?

The Germans wanted to dissolve their guilt  – for starting two world wars and perpetrating the Holocaust – in the sea of a European superstate. Which they knew they could dominate through their economic strength.

The French wanted to be part of an entity that was more populous, more prosperous, and more powerful than the United States of America, even though it meant sharing power.

The ambitious politicians of Western Europe wanted a bigger stage to strut on. As well as a perpetual ride on a gravy train.

Eastern European nations had a more respectable motive for joining the EU after the collapse of the Soviet Union, under whose heel they had suffered for some 40 years: they saw the EU as a shelter from renewed Russian imperial ambition. Some of them – notably Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia – are now defying dictatorship from Brussels, the EU capital, by refusing to admit unlimited numbers of Muslim “refugees”.

The annual budget of the EU is about 145 billion euros ($153 billion US dollars). By its own accounting, 4.7% of the budget is lost in fraud and corruption. That is some 6.97 billion Euros.*  

It employs 33,000 people.

There are 28 member states and 24 official languages. Every document has to be put out in all 24 languages.

The EU leaders see their supra-national, “post-nationalist” union as a model for world government.

The Council of the European Union governs by decree. The European Parliament consists of elected members but they do not have the power to legislate. They can approve or reject a legislative proposal, or propose amendments. In other words they give advice, but the Council is not legally obliged to take it. It is treated as mere opinion. For appearance sake, and as a result of case-law decisions by the EU Court of Justice, the Council must receive that opinion before it can act on its own decision. This is pure gesturism. The ritual salutes democracy without adopting it.

In sum, the EU is a political and economic monstrosity. It cannot and will not endure.

Elections this year in the Netherlands may well bring Geert Wilders and his Party for Freedom into power. If so, there could be a referendum on whether the country should leave the EU (though legislation would be necessary to make this possible), and a majority vote in favor.

Nationalist movements in France and Italy may also bring those countries to leave the EU.

All of which threatens the continued existence of the rotten, superfluous, and positively harmful European Union.

From Gatestone, by Timon Dias:

At its core, what is the EU? And why, despite its vast resources, does it seem perpetually unable to make sense of the world and meet its objectives? …

First, there’s the EU’s primary internal contradiction: EU federalism is an ideology that propagates post-ideologism; a culturally amorphous post-ideological world. … It is acting as if the world has already arrived at this so badly coveted post-cultural/ideological end station.

This is why the EU’s foreign minister is convinced political Islam should be part of the solution for Europe’s bicultural malaise. It is why for almost a decade now, the EU is maintaining it is reasonable to expect a German fiscal discipline from Greece ― a country in which tax evasion has been a central pillar of its culture ever since it was conquered by the Ottoman Empire some 600 years ago. It is why the EU fails to grasp the fact it’s deepening the migration crisis by acting as a ferry service for human traffickers. It is why the EU refuses to acknowledge an inherently expansionist religion like Islam views Europe’s open borders as an invitation to conquest. And it is why it was caught off guard by the mass rapes in Cologne etc. …

In short, the EU is treating the world as if it’s already an earthly EUtopia in which everything can be solved through dialogue and the right subsidies. And that’s why it will keep on chasing facts until its imminent demise.

But there’s something even more fundamental obstructing the EU’s ability to solve crises.

The EU is artificial and unnecessary. 

What is the EU? The EU is a government looking for people to govern. It didn’t evolve organically from a community’s desire to be governed.

It was an elitist ideological hobby project ― one that European Commission first Vice-President Frans Timmermans a few weeks ago referred to as:

Arguably the most successful peace project in human history.

This, however, is a deception. A deception so pervasive, it has become the most pivotal element of the Eurocrats’ belief system. But the EU is no peace project. It neither caused nor consolidated peace.

True peace is being able to hurt one another, but simply not wanting to. In 1945, after centuries of conflict, European nation states finally reached this status. Subsequently, the European Economic Community (EEC) consolidated this peace in 1958 by entangling the French and German economies.

The EU came afterwards, without there ever being an actual need for it ― the continent was peaceful and that peace was consolidated. …

So, if the EU neither caused nor consolidated peace, what is the EU’s fundamental raison d’être? The simple answer is: it has none.

There is nothing fundamentally positive about Europe, that could not exist without the EU.

This is no trivial matter.

Because the EU is a highly artificial and non-organic governing body, one without a fundamental raison d’être, the EU’s priority objective, at all times, is self-preservation. Even when this means not solving problems at all.

The euro and migration crises serve as prime examples. The EU is not only not solving the euro crisis, it’s prolonging it by insisting fiscally dysfunctional member states remain member states, simply because their ejection from the EU would endanger and obscure the EU itself.

The same is true for the migration crisis. It’s not hard to solve. To simply stop being a ferry service for human traffickers and implement the very straight forward Australian model, is hardly rocket science. It’s no coincidence Australia’s migration architect claims Europe doesn’t even seem to be trying to solve this crisis.

In 2016, 490,547 migrants reached Europe. The total number of asylum applicants is almost 2.5 times higher at 1.205 million, which is a modest drop from 2015’s 1.323 million. During the first months of 2017, almost 13,000 arrived by sea.

So what is the EU’s priority during the migrant crisis?

Instead, the EU’s highest priority seems to be preventing nation states from bypassing the EU, by taking their own measures against the crisis.

For if that were to happen, the EU would lose its “greatest achievement”: the federal control of European national borders, without which, the EU is nothing.

The EU must go.

The nation-state with strongly defended borders must be resurrected as an ideal.

The British showed the way with Brexit – its majority vote last year to leave the EU.

President Trump lights the way for the European nations with his slogan, “Make America Great Again!”

 

*We quote an article on EU corruption by Richard Milton.

Have the EU’s accounts for the past 19 years been signed off by the auditors or not? The EU says they have been signed off, while critics in parliament and the media say they have not. So who is telling the truth about the accounts? What are the real facts?

First, a little background to the controversy. Since 1977, the EU’s budget has been audited annually by a body called the European Court of Auditors, based in Luxembourg. The Court is nominally independent, although it is funded by the EU.

In the 1980s, the EU’s budget became the subject of allegations of fraud, so in 1988 the EU formed UCLAF – the Unit for the Co-ordination of Fraud Protection.

A decade later, In 1997, the Court of Auditors investigated UCLAF and discovered that it was dealing with 40 cases of potential corruption, conflict of interests, favoritism or just bad management. Many of the cases had been brought to UCLAF by members of staff of the Commission reporting their suspicions about other officials.

In a report described as “devastating”, the Court revealed that no-one had been prosecuted for fraud and no-one was likely to be prosecuted, because UCLAF had no powers of investigation or arrest and there was no European prosecutor to take on such cases. It recommended that UCLAF be replaced by, in effect, an economic FBI with the staff and the powers to police the EU’s huge budget – a fully fledged operational fraud squad.

Later the same year, 1998, Paul van Buitenen, an assistant internal auditor in the European Commission’s Financial Control Directorate, turned whistleblower and wrote directly to the European Parliament expressing his  “discontent with the way the Commission services are dealing with irregularities and possible fraud”.

His whistleblowing led ultimately led to the resignation of the Commission presided over by Jacques Santer. His reward was to be suspended with his salary halved. He fought back and his exposures triggered the collapse of Santer’s Commission.

In the wake of the “Santergate” scandal UCLAF was replaced by a new organization, OLAF [Office européen de lutte anti-fraude]. This was said to be an improvement since OLAF had more staff, more money and clearer guidelines and was described as representing a move towards a more serious investigative prosecuting body. But it remained the case that only national member states could take legal action against suspected fraudsters – the same central weakness that had defeated UCLAF.

OLAF is notified of some 12,000 cases of possible fraud every year, and says that it adopts a “zero tolerance” policy towards corruption and fraud in EU institutions. In reality, OLAF must be somewhat more tolerant than “zero” as it investigates only some 200 cases per year – that is to say 98% of reported cases go uninvestigated.

This is the most likely explanation of the fact that, since 1999, OLAF has sent only 335 people to jail and recovered only 1.1 Billion Euros of EU money – less than one-thousandth of the amount unaccounted for.

One other obstacle to OLAF nailing anyone inside the EU is that EU law gives EU officials immunity from prosecution both while they work in the EU and then for the rest of their lives for any acts committed in the course of their duties. Even if OLAF managed to put together a case against an EU employee, he or she could not be prosecuted anyway.

This long history of corruption and fraud brings us to the case of Marta Andreason, who in 2002 was appointed the EU’s first Chief Accountant, the director responsible for budget execution and the EU’s accounting officer.

From the start, Andreasen was critical of the EU’s accounting system for being open to fraud, criticisms she raised with  her superior but to no effect. She voiced her doubts to Commissioner Michaele Schreyer and the Commission President Romano Prodi, and when she got no reply approached members of the EU Parliament’s Budget Control Committee.

Because of her doubts, she refused to sign off the 2001 European Commission accounts and went public with her concerns. She suffered a similar fate to Paul van Buitenen before her, and was sacked for speaking out (“failure to show sufficient loyalty and respect”.) In reality she was fired for refusing to sign the account and embarrassing the Commission by letting the cat out of the bag about the extent of fraud.

A series of other EU officials tried to blow the whistle on the fraud and corruption of their colleagues and all received similar treatment, Dorte Schmidt-Brown, Robert Dougal Watt and Robert McCoy. …

At this point, in 2002, EU officials realized that they could no longer conceal or ignore the extent of fraud and corruption in the EU budget and that they must act to try to restore public confidence in the EU’s financial affairs. So they did what most large bureaucratic organizations do in these circumstances. When you cannot change the facts, you change the way the facts are presented. So the EU turned to public relations to solve their problem.

From 2002 until the present, the Court of Auditors continued to audit the budget annually, but they no longer signed off the accounts as a whole. Instead, they have split the budget into two sections – the part to which they are willing to give a clean bill of health, and the part to which they are not willing to give a clean bill. The Auditors refer to this second part as its “opinion on the underlying payments which have been negative or adverse”.

To justify this change in established auditing procedure it came up with a number of arguments. The budget is too big and too complicated for us to expect them to account for every penny. Every large organization has amounts missing and unaccounted for. We can’t expect the EU Auditors to know every little thing that goes on inside member countries. The bit that’s not signed off is “only” a few per cent of the budget so it’s not worth making a fuss about. And, in any case, said the Auditors, although we do not know where the money went or who took it, we can say that it definitely wasn’t fraud or theft.

“Errors”, said the auditors,  “do not mean that EU money is lost, wasted or affected by fraud.” When asked to give an example of some money that had gone missing that wasn’t fraud, the EU said, “A farmer was granted a special premium for 150 sheep. The Court found that the beneficiary did not have any sheep. The corresponding payment was therefore irregular.” The missing money is accounted for by changing the word “fraud” to the word “irregular”. …

Remember, the question we are trying to answer here is … “Have the EU accounts been signed off for the past 19 years?” And the only honest answer to this second question is clearly, “No, they have not been signed off.”

What the EU has done is not to make extra efforts to get to the bottom of its accounts and sign them off, but to change the normal rules of accounts auditing so that they no longer apply to the EU, and to change the meaning of ordinary English words to try to persuade us that this procedure is acceptable. …

The amount not signed off by the Court of Auditors was “only” 4.7% of the budget.  The problem is that 4.7% of the budget is 6.97 billion Euros

The philosopher of Trumpism? (Part One) 4

The defeated Democrats and their furious supporters of the fourth estate have not tried to find out what Donald Trump and his like-thinkers actually think. They accuse him and his supporters of being everything they consider vile. So it’s a welcome development if some journalists try to find out what he believes, what he stands for, what he aims at.

Two researchers, apparently already convinced that President Trump’s own ideas are not discoverable at present (a conviction stated with a hint that he doesn’t have any), studied instead his closest adviser, a man with a philosophical turn of mind, and investigated him through what he had said and done in the past. If there is to be such a thing as Trumpism, it would be formed by this thinker, they deduce.

The adviser is Stephen Bannon. His official position in the White House is Chief Strategist. Democrats use their whole vocabulary of five or six political insults to denigrate him: “bigot”, “racist”, “xenophobe”, “Islamophobe”, “Nazi” (a favorite screech by mobs who are increasingly Nazi-like), and even one label not always used as an insult by the Left – “anti-Semite”.

But the two researchers, Gwynn Guilford and Nikhil Sonnad, tried to find out what Bannon’s ideas really were. And they wrote an article about him, to be found at Quartz:

What does Donald Trump want for America? His supporters don’t know. His party doesn’t know. Even he doesn’t know.

If there is a political vision underlying Trumpism, however, the person to ask is not Trump. It’s his éminence grise, Stephen K. Bannon, the chief strategist of the Trump administration.

…  Through a combination of luck (a fallen-through deal left him with a stake in a hit show called Seinfeld) and a knack for voicing outrage, Bannon remade himself as a minor luminary within the far edge of right-wing politics, writing and directing a slew of increasingly conservative documentaries.

“The far edge of right-wing politics” they say. So Bannon is on the “far right”? We conservatives only say that someone is on the “far right” if we mean someone like Mussolini, or the Black Hundreds, or Vlad the Impaler, or Genghis Khan. To us conservatives, Mr. Bannon does not sound or behave like any of them.

So now we expect that this article might not be a friendly portrait of its subject.

Bannon’s influence reached a new high in 2012 when he took over Breitbart News, an online news site, following the death of creator Andrew Breitbart. While at Breitbart, Bannon ran a popular talk radio call-in show and launched a flame-throwing assault on mainstream Republicans, embracing instead a fringe cast of ultra-conservative figures. Among them was Trump, a frequent guest of the show.

Trump “an ultra-conservative figure”? A lot of conservatives complained that he wasn’t conservative enough. Many insisted he wasn’t conservative at all.

And the question arises – why not examine what Trump said as a guest on that show? Is it not possible that something Trump said now and then influenced what Bannon thought?

They established a relationship that eventually led Bannon to mastermind Trump’s populist romp to the White House, culminating in his taking the administration’s most senior position (alongside the chief of staff, Reince Priebus).

“Populist”, we suspect, is a pejorative to the authors. And what of “romp”? What is a romp? A caper, a frolic, a bout of jolly play – nothing serious like standing for election as the president of the United States with a smart strategy for winning.

It’s impossible to know for sure what Bannon will do with his newfound power; he honors few interview requests lately, ours included. (The White House did not respond to our request to speak with Bannon.) But his time as a conservative filmmaker and head of Breitbart News reveals a grand theory of what America should be. Using the vast amount of Bannon’s own publicly available words — from his lectures, interviews, films and more — we can construct elements of the vision for America he hopes to realize in the era of Trump.

Bannon’s political philosophy boils down to three things that a Western country, and America in particular, needs to be successful: Capitalism, nationalism, and “Judeo-Christian values”. These are all deeply related, and essential.

We will be commenting on that below.

America, says Bannon, is suffering a “crisis of capitalism”.  … Capitalism used to be all about moderation, an entrepreneurial American spirit, and respect for one’s fellow Christian man. In fact, in remarks delivered to the Vatican in 2014, Bannon says that this “enlightened capitalism” was the “underlying principle” that allowed the US to escape the “barbarism” of the 20th century.

Since this enlightened era, things have gradually gotten worse. (Hence the “crisis”.) The downward trend began with the 1960s and ’70s counterculture. “The baby boomers are the most spoiled, most self-centered, most narcissistic generation the country’s ever produced,” says Bannon in a 2011 interview.

Is there a good argument that he is wrong about this? If so, we would like to hear it.

He takes on this issue in more detail in Generation Zero, a 2010 documentary he wrote and directed. The film shows one interviewee after another laying out how the “capitalist system” was slowly undermined and destroyed by a generation of wealthy young kids who had their material needs taken care of by hardworking parents — whose values were shaped by the hardship of the Great Depression and World War II — only to cast off the American values that had created that wealth in the first place. This shift gave rise to socialist policies that encouraged dependency on the government, weakening capitalism.

Again, we would like to hear a refutation of that judgment.

Eventually, this socialist vision succeeded in infiltrating the very highest levels of institutional power in America.

It did indeed. It was in pursuit of a long-term plan of the New Left which its adherents called “the long march through the institutions“. Nothing fictitious about it. Not an invention of paranoid “far-right” conservatives but of the Italian Communist leader, Antonio Gramsci (1891-1937), eagerly taken up by the New Left in the late 1960s everywhere in the Western world.

“By the late 1990s, the left had taken over many of the institutions of power, meaning government, media, and academe,” says Peter Schweizer, a writer affiliated with Bannon’s Government Accountability Institute, a conservative think tank, in Generation Zero. “And it was from these places and positions of power that they were able to disrupt the system and implement a strategy that was designed to ultimately undermine the capitalist system.” …

Anything untrue there? Anything misleading? Not that we can see.

Underlying all of this is the philosophy of Edmund Burke, an influential 18th-century Irish political thinker whom Bannon occasionally references.

It figures that he would. Edmund Burke is generally considered one of the foremost philosophers of conservatism.

In Reflections on the Revolution in France, Burke presents his view that the basis of a successful society should not be abstract notions like human rights, social justice, or equality.

Indeed not. Those are the political obsessions of the contemporary Left: “human rights” for some by imposing obligations on others; “social justice” at the cost of justice itself which can only be applied to individuals; “equality” at the price of liberty, through tyrannical state enforcement. 

Rather, societies work best when traditions that have been shown to work are passed from generation to generation. The baby boomers, Bannon says in a lecture given to the Liberty Restoration Foundation (LRF), failed to live up to that Burkean responsibility by abandoning the tried-and-true values of their parents (nationalism, modesty, patriarchy, religion) in favor of new abstractions (pluralism, sexuality, egalitarianism, secularism).

Now obviously we have a difference of opinion with both Burke and Bannon on one of their preferred values: religion. But it certainly was valued by Burke, and is valued by most American conservatives. (Burke had a Catholic mother and a Protestant father. He believed strongly in the importance of Christianity as the foundation of conservative politics. And Bannon is a Catholic.)

By  “modesty” the authors mean chasteness. We gather that, because the authors name its opposite as “sexuality”. As sexuality is not a value, we have to understand it to imply “immodesty” or promiscuousness as one of the “new abstractions” opposed to Burkean conservatism.

By “pluralism”they can only mean multiculturalism and globalism.

By “egalitarianism” they mean socialism.

For both Burke and Bannon, failure to pass the torch results in social chaos.

Once in power, the liberal, secular, global-minded elite overhauled the institutions of democracy and capitalism to tighten its grip on power and the ability to enrich itself. The “party of Davos“, as Bannon long ago dubbed this clique, has warped capitalism’s institutions, depriving middle classes everywhere of the wealth they deserve.

Leaving aside that secularism does not interfere with democracy or distort capitalism, did that not happen? It did.

This pattern of exploitation came to a head in the 2008 global financial and economic crisis. Wall Street — enabled by fellow global elites in government — spun profits out of speculation instead of investing their wealth in domestic jobs and businesses. When the resulting bubble finally burst, the immoral government stuck hardworking American taxpayers with the bailout bill.

An incomplete description of what happened. The house-owning bubble was not caused by Wall Street; it was caused by Democratic governments insisting that financial institutions give mortgage loans to people who could not afford them. So yes, Wall Street was “enabled by global elites in government”.

This is the kind of thing that led Bannon to say in that 2011 LRF lecture that there is “socialism for the very wealthy”. The rest of the country, he says, is [sic] “common sense, practical, middle-class people”.

There is also “socialism for the very poor,” he adds. “We’ve built a welfare state that is completely and totally unsupportable, and now this is a crisis.”

Bannon wants all of this liberal-sponsored “socialism” to end. He celebrates CNBC host Rick Santelli’s famous 2009 tirade about “those who carry the water and those who drink the water”, which sparked what became the Tea Party, a populist movement focused on tax cuts, fiscal scrimping, and a narrow interpretation of constitutional rights. Channeling the spirit of the Tea Party, Bannon blames Republicans as much as Democrats for taking part in cronyism and corruption at the expense of middle class families.

What Guilford and Sonnad call “fiscal scrimping” we, like the Tea Party, call “fiscal responsibility”.

What they call “a narrow interpretation of constitutional rights”, we call “rights according to the Constitution”.

But, yes, there were Republicans as well as Democrats who took part in cronyism and corruption at the expense of the middle class.

So far, the authors’ attempt subtly to convey a portrait of a stuff-shirt bigot would convince only those who already think of conservatives as stuff-shirt bigots. But nothing that has been said (except to us the mention of religion as a good thing), actually puts a single black mark against Mr Bannon in conservative eyes.

“We don’t really believe there is a functional conservative party in this country and we certainly don’t think the Republican Party is that,” says Bannon in a 2013 panel in which he discusses Breitbart’s vision. “We tend to look at this imperial city of Washington, this boomtown, as they have two groups, or two parties, that represent the insiders’ commercial party, and that is a collection of insider deals, insider transactions and a budding aristocracy that has made this the wealthiest city in the country.”

In short, in Bannonism, the crisis of capitalism has led to socialism and the suffering of the middle class. And it has made it impossible for the current generation to bequeath a better future to its successors, to fulfill its Burkean duty.

So what exactly are these traditions that Americans are meant to pass along to future generations? In addition to “crisis of capitalism,” one of Bannon’s favorite terms is “Judeo-Christian values*.” This is the second element of his theory of America.

Generation Zero, Bannon’s 2010 documentary, has a lot to say about “American values”, and a lot of this matches closely the ideals of the Tea Party. But since 2013 or 2014, Bannon’s casual emphasis on American values has swelled to include a strong religious component. The successful functioning of America — and Western civilization in general — depends on capitalism, and capitalism depends on the presence of “Judeo-Christian values.” …

The article continues to discuss Bannon’s views on the connection between capitalism and “Judeo-Christian values” at some length. We’ll cut most of it out, but will also stress that our disagreement with Stepehen Bannon on this point in no way weakens our agreement with his historical analysis, his advocacy for capitalism, or his strong preference for nationalism over globalism.

 

Footnote:

In obstinate opposition to a universal assumption, we deny that there is any such thing as “Judeo-Christian values”. The values of Judaism and the values of Christianity are not only different, they are contradictory. (See our post, Against “Judeo-Christian values”, August 26, 2014.)  The very fact that we agree with the rest of the Burke/Bannon political philosophy without being religious, disproves their contention thatCapitalism, nationalism, and Judeo-Christian values … are all deeply related, and essential”.

 

 

(To be continued)

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