Daily Check-In 04/20/2018

Friday, April 20th.  4-20.  Happy Weed Day, if you’re into that kind of thing.

 

COHEN IS FUCKED HARDER THAN STORMY DANIELS IN BONE APPETITE (2003, FROM THE INTERNET ADULT FILM DATABASE (YES, THAT REALLY IS A THING))

The consensus thought is that Michael Cohen will flip on Donald Trump as soon as charges are brought against him.  Cohen loves to talk tough, but he’s probably never been in a real fight in his life, and you never know how you’ll react until you get punched in the face.  He’s bragged about how he would take a bullet for Trump, but there is a world of difference between taking a bullet and spending 30 years in prison.

Remember on Daily Check-In 04/18/2018 when I said to keep an eye out for Keith Davidson?  Looks like we don’t have to wait to find out news about him.  He’s already working with the feds against Cohen.  My guess is that they found some incriminating evidence against Davidson, and gave him a simple option; work with them against Cohen or look at a VERY long prison sentence and disbarment.

On top of his federal problems, Cohen owes $174,000 in back taxes on his taxi cab companies.  Those tax problems are on top of his other legal issues.

There’s only one word that describes how I feel watching Michael Cohen squirm.

Schadenfreude.

 

DNC SUES TRUMP FOR RUSSIAN COLLUSION

Coming right out of the Watergate playbook, the Democratic Party has sued the Trump Campaign, the Russians, and all of the players in Federal Civil court in SDNY in Manhattan.  You know, the same place that’s going through Trump’s lawyer’s documents with a fine toothed comb.

It would be a shame if Trump had to split his attention among another lawsuit.

 

STORMYGATE:  STORMY SUES TRUMP FOR DEFAMATION

Look, another lawsuit!  This time because Donald Trump called a woman he was involved in a civil lawsuit with a liar.

Gee, I REALLY hope he can focus his energies and doesn’t have to deal with ANOTHER lawsuit.

 

THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION:  McCABE SUES TRUMP FOR DEFAMATION, WRONGFUL TERMINATION.  SESSIONS THREATENS TO RESIGN IF ROSENSTEIN IS FIRED, DID TRUMP SLEEP IN MOSCOW?

That’s at least two lawsuits filed and another promised in ONE FUCKING DAY.

And Rudy?  That fucker hasn’t been in a courtroom since the 80’s.  He’s brash, obnoxious, and under investigation for passing on classified information from FBI agents to the press.  Which may be the only use he has in this case.

 

COMEY DON’T PLAY THAT:  FALLOUT FROM THE MEMO RELEASE

 

COLD WAR 2.0

 

WHITE HOUSE CHAOS: STOLEN VALOR

Claiming to serve and fight when one didn’t is such a scummy, slimy, cowardly move, and that kind of claim is easy to prove or disprove.  It’s not like anyone could look up the division, find out where it was headquartered, contact the base, and ask someone to look up the personnel records from over almost 30 years ago.  Or, track down a few soldiers from that unit and ask them “Did you serve with this guy?”

Fuck Pompeo, and fuck Pruitt.  I haven’t talked about him enough, but his corrupt ass really needs to spend some time in the barrel.

 

#NEVERAGAIN

19 years ago, two kids rolled in to Columbine High School and shot up the place, in what was at that the time the worst shooting in a school.  Since then, over 200,000 school aged kids have been exposed to gun violence in this country, while the Republican Party accepted more and more money from the NRA to block any and all attempts at gun control, no matter how common sense the ideas were, like keeping guns out of the hands of people with violent criminal histories or mentally unstable people.

An entire generation of kids grew up under the specter of violence in school.  And we let it happen.  Gen-X, Gen-Y, the Boomers, all of us let this happen.

We need to stand with this next generation to solve this problem.

 

TRUMP ORG AND CORRUPTION, FROM THE WATER IS WET DEPARTMENT

These stories about Trump calling reporters to leak stories about him have been circulating since the 80’s, but it looks like a reporter found their old collection of tapes where “John Barron” talked about how great Trump is.

If that name looks familiar, Trump later named his last son Barron.

 

SMALLVILLE AND SEX TRAFFICKING

Ok, this is pretty fucking weird, and I know it doesn’t have anything to do with Russia, politics, or treason.

A couple weeks ago I ran across a story from Artvoice posted on Reddit about a self-help multi-level-marketing system that is actually a pyramid scheme sex cult.  I didn’t catch all of the details, but it was just weird enough to might have a piece of truth to it.

Well, turns out that Clark’s blonde friend from Smallville was running a sex cult, complete with branding her slaves with her initials on their vaginas.

This is 2018, that will be the craziest thing to happen for at least 20, maybe 25 minutes.

 

SMOKE’EM IF YOU GOT’EM

 

GOP:  THE PARTY OF LINCOLN IS DEAD

 

THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE

That last article was from Fox Business, claiming to have insider information about the Mueller Investigation.  I’m calling bullshit.

Mueller’s team has been a black box.  No one knows what they’re doing until they do it, and any info that does come out only comes from the defense attorneys that get interviewed.  On top of top of that, Fox News Channel is under a counter-intelligence investigation.

So, why in the Crystal Pepsi-flavored fuck would anyone from the Mueller team talk to Fox Business and Fox News?

 

CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA AND FACEBOOK

 

CA CREW

 

RUMOR MILL:  90 DAYS

We’ve entered a new phase, where multiple investigations in several jurisdictions are taking place simultaneously. Mueller’s work in EDVA and DC, Cohen and the DNC lawsuits in SDNY, and now EDNY subpoenaed Jared’s businesses over their rent-control scam.

4 federal attorney offices are actively investigating people close to the President.  And they know they’re screwed.  Even Cohen’s own lawyer expects him to be indicted within 90 days.

I find 90 days an interesting time, and makes me think that we’re going to see a major change in the strategy.

Why?  That’s how long it would take to change New York state law to remove double jeopardy protection for people pardoned in federal court.  I mentioned in Daily Check-In 04/18/2018 about the efforts to amend New York 40.20.  If that change goes through, then it’s game on, as New York won’t have to worry about what crimes get pardoned.  If anything, the pardons would make it easier for them to charge people in state court, since as I mentioned before in GTKYG-Pardon Limitations that accepting a pardon is an admission of guilt and waives their fifth amendment rights against self-incrimination.

 

That’s it for today.  I’m not sure what I will write this weekend.  Most likely, I will update the Cast of Characters.  Maybe I’ll start up a tally with all of the known lawsuits floating around.  We’ll see where things go from here.

 

Thank you, and have a good one.

 

“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”

– Katy Tur

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Daily Check-In 04/19/2018

Thursday, April 19th.

 

THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION

Tonight, at 9PM EST, just as Jim Comey was sitting down at Rachel Maddow’s desk, redacted versions of his memos are released.  While he’s a guest on the largest rated Cable News show, on an episode that Rachel has been plugging for weeks.

She is reading the memos to him.

Here’s the link to the memos.  Want the direct PDF link?  Have fun.

I’m amazed by this move.  This is brilliant.  The DOJ knew that the memos would leak to Fox News and the Right Wing Media in minutes, and they would release their tiny little selections, and we would be on the defensive.  Instead, DOJ releases the memo on their own, and gets it out in the open,

Rachel asked Comey how it would be possible to end the investigation.

I actually don’t think that you could accomplish that by firing Director Mueller.  I think you’d have to fire everybody in the FBI and the Justice Department to accomplish that in practice, given the commitment of the people in those organizations.

I think I’m going to sleep a little better tonight.

Rosenstein, who brought up the Mueller probe himself, offered the assurance during a meeting with Trump at the White House last Thursday, a development that helped tamp down the president’s desire to remove Rosenstein or Mueller, the people said.

After the meeting, Trump told some of his closest advisers that it’s not the right time to remove either man since he’s not a target of the probe. One person said Trump doesn’t want to take any action that would drag out the investigation.

Just remember, cops and lawyers don’t have to tell the truth to suspects under investigation.  While it could be a courtesy, what in any of this implies that Donald Trump deserves courtesy?

 

COMEY DON’T PLAY THAT

 

COHEN

Spicy Mic’s thread on Alan Futerfas…

 

STORMYGATE

 

COLD WAR 2.0

 

#NEVERAGAIN

 

IN A NEW YORK STATE OF MIND

 

GOP:  THE PARTY OF LINCOLN IS DEAD

Unable either to repeal Obamacare or to design a better alternative, President Trump has spent the last year engaged in a multifaceted campaign of sabotage against his predecessor’s legacy: weakening the law’s consumer protections and eliminating its individual mandate. Trump is symbolically peeing in Obama’s bed.

Later this year, Republicans in Congress will have to lie down on that pee-soaked mattress. The Urban Institute has calculated that the various acts of legislative and executive sabotage against the law will increase premiums on the individual market by an average of 18 percent. Republicans in Congress have already formulated a plan to explain away the disaster their party engineered, reports Caitlin Owens. And the plan, astonishingly, is to explain to their voters that higher premiums is the necessary sacrifice they must make to help relieve low-income households of the burden of paying the individual mandate…

 

BLUE WAVE

 

WHITE HOUSE CHAOS

WASHINGTON—The real-estate company run by the family of White House adviser Jared Kushner in mid-March received a federal grand-jury subpoena for information related to paperwork the company filed in New York City concerning its rent-regulated tenants, according to people familiar with the matter.

The subpoena, part of an investigation by prosecutors in the Brooklyn U.S. attorney’s office, came shortly after an Associated Press article about the company having filed documents that said it had zero rent-regulated tenants, when in fact it had hundreds, an omission that relieved them of certain rules governing developers.

 

SAY GOODBYE TO THE ECONOMY

 

THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE

 

RUMOR MILL:  DIPSHIT COWBOY’S SCORES ON HIS OWN GOAL

Once again, Devin Nunes done fucked up good.  Every time he thinks he has a fool-proof plan, it blows up in his face.  It happened with the memo, his midnight ride to the White House, and it’s happening with the Comey Memo.

He thought, and I use that term loosely, that he would take these memos, deliver them to the White House and Hannity at Fox News, and use those places to release what they thought would help them the most.

Instead, someone released the memos to the press. destroying his thunder and putting the whole memo out there, preventing it from being used as propaganda.

 

That’s it for today.  I’m curious how this works out tomorrow, but I’d put money down that The Dotard spews shit from the shitter in a 5am twitter rant.  Something something “Lyin’ Comey, BAD! MAGA! No Hookers!”  Then, he’ll contradict himself…again.

Why do I have a feeling that the history classes covering this time period in school will require parental permission slips?

 

Thank you, and have a good one.

 

“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”

Daily Check-In 04/18/2018

Wednesday, April 18th.

 

COHEN/HANNITY

We’ve established that Michael Cohen is a fucking idiot.  He’s also a loudmouth bully, and up to his neck in illegal shit.

On top of that, he would flip on Trump to save his own neck.  As tough as Cohen thinks he is, the threat of 30 years in prison on Bank Fraud charges will change his mind.

Also, here’s a trivia question.  Who was the attorney representing Karen McDougal, Stormy Daniels, and Elliot Broidy’s not-to-be-baby-momma?

Keith Davidson.

In all three cases, Keith Davidson was the attorney for the women, convincing them to sign the worst NDA ever made.  A half-way competent lawyer who had their clients interest at heart would have fought against the clauses in the contract, or challenged it completely.

But, what if Davidson was in on the scam?

I can accept him not being complicit if he represented one of the women, maybe two.  But all three?  Something’s fishy.

Keep his name on the radar.  I’ve got a feeling he’ll pop back up again.

 

STORMYWATCH

I don’t like to talk about The Dotard’s tweets, but in this case he done fucked up.  He’s in the middle of a civil lawsuit against Stormy Daniels, and she has a competent lawyer.  Calling her a liar through his “official” Twitter feed, which has been argued by the White House as official communications, is an open and shut case of defamation.  He is trying to discredit his opponent in the media, intending to do harm to a private citizen.

Also, Trump claims that she’s lying about the encounter in the parking, as though he knows what happened.  Does he not know that making that claim implies that he had knowledge of events, and that tweeting that would open him up to that line of questioning?

 

THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION

 

COMEY DON’T PLAY THAT

“These people don’t represent anything I believe in. … I see the Republican Party, as near as I can tell, reflects now entirely Donald Trump’s values. It doesn’t reflect values at all. It’s transactional, it’s ego-driven, it’s in service to his ego. And it’s, I think, consoling itself that we’re going to achieve important policy goals — a tax cut or something.”

 

COLD WAR 2.0: SYRIA, SANCTIONS, AND KOREA

Have they NOT been paying attention for the last couple years?

 

GOP:  THE PARTY OF LINCOLN IS DEAD

 

WHITE HOUSE CHAOS

 

#NEVERAGAIN

 

RED STATE TEACHER STRIKES

 

THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE

Fox News host and media analyst Howard Kurtz on Wednesday criticized his network colleague Sean Hannity for not disclosing his legal relationship with President Trump‘s personal attorney, Michael Cohen, when defending Cohen on his show in recent days.

“Sometimes people in journalism, on the news or opinion side, find themselves covering folks with whom they have had friendships or professional dealings,” Kurtz wrote. If the relationship is serious enough, it may require recusal. If not, the best course is being transparent and disclosing it.”

“Hannity doesn’t believe his friendship with Cohen rose to that level,” he continued. “But by making that choice, he gave his detractors ample ammunition against him.”

 

CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA AND FACEBOOK

A lawsuit in Illinois making it illegal upload biometric data, like pictures of a persons face, without consent of said person has gained class action status.

 

ELECTIONEERING FOR FUN AND PROFIT

Even without foreign interference, elections in recent years have been marred by software glitches, clerical errors, and machine failures that have prevented people from voting, caused long lines at polling places, and prompted some voters to give up and walk away. (In 2006, for instance, it has been estimated that twenty per cent of voters in Denver were dissuaded from voting after a software failure led to long lines.) If these bugs were to be turned into features and deployed systematically by malicious actors, as Michael Daniel, the Obama Administration’s “cyber czar” pointed out recently, on “60 Minutes,” chaos would ensue.

This is pretty interesting, and could easily be the future of elections.  Here’s how it works…

Instead of picking only one choice on the ballot, voters rank their preference, from first to last.  The votes are tallied, and if anyone gets a majority of the first-place votes in this first round, they win.  If not, the candidate who received the least first-place votes is eliminated, and everyone who voted for that person is then counted in with their second-place votes.  This process continues until there is a winner with more than 50% of the vote.

For example, let’s look at the 2016 GOP Primary.  There were 17 candidates that ran for office, and in almost every state, especially early on with the large crowd, the winner would get less than a majority.

With ranked choice voting, let’s assume that Trump only received the first votes from 30% of the voters, but was the last-choice vote for the rest of the candidates.  All 16 of them.  And the voters for the other 16 candidates all had variations of Marco Rubio, Lindsey Graham, and Ted Cruz as their second through fourth choices.  After their first choices get eliminated (Jeb Bush, Carly from HP, Ben “Dining Room Table” Carson), those voters add to Marco’s, Lindsey’s, or Ted’s totals.  Eventually, we get to a situation like the following:

  1. Trump 30%
  2. Marco 25%
  3. Lindsey 25%
  4. Ted Cruz 20%

Assuming that Ted’s voters split between Marco and Lindsey, the next round looks like this:

  1. Marco 35%
  2. Lindsey 35%
  3. Trump 30%

Still no majority, but now Trump is in last place.  He gets eliminated, and either Marco Rubio or Lindsey Graham would win.  My guess is Lindsey since Marco sounds too… ethnic for a lot of Trump’s primary voters.

Ranked voting is a combination of being liked the most and hated the least.  This is important in a race with more than two competitors, especially when people use their votes as a protest.

 

NEW YORK 40.20 AND DOUBLE JEOPARDY

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman asked the main lawmakers in the state of New York to close a loophole in state law which puts a higher double jeopardy standard on the prosecution.

Double Jeopardy, aside from being the harder questions of the show, is the legal concept that a person cannot be tried twice for the same crime in the same jurisdiction.  If John is tried for murdering Tom, but is found not guilty at trial, he can’t be retried again, even with new evidence like Tom bragging about the murder on Facebook, or uploading video of the murder to YouTube.

New York has a higher standard for double jeopardy in that if someone is tried for the same or similar crime in Federal court, they can’t be tried in New York.  This is problematic if someone received a presidential pardon, then New York couldn’t prosecute them for that specific crime.  They could still prosecute other crimes, but only ones that aren’t pardoned.

What Schniederman is asking the State Legislature to do is close the loophole that prevents them from prosecuting people in the state if they were pardoned at the Federal level for the same or similar charges.

 

IN OTHER NEWS…

Bruno, a Hall of Fame wrestler, Italian immigrant, and native of Pittsburgh, grew up in the same neighborhood as Andy Warhol and Dan Marino.  Dan’s family was back-door neighbors with Bruno’s family.

 

 

RUMOR MILL:  PROPER PROTEST ETTIQUETTE

Vlad’s tips for effective peaceful protests:

Please:

  • Dress nicely: Undermine the Fox/GOP narrative that all protesters are ominous black-clad masked Antifa members
  • Wear solid comfortable shoes: Be prepared to stand, walk, and have your feet accidentally stepped on
  • Be positive: Your mood is infectious
  • Talk to strangers! Get to know your fellow citizens and what you have in common
  • Make sure you and everybody around you knows their civil rights: This expedites the collective and personal decision-making process if civil disobedience is called for (ACLU guidelines for protesters – PDF link)
  • DO NOT allow yourself or those around you to be baited into a potentially violent situation: Expect interactions with counter-protesters and instigators who want to manipulate the tone of this demonstration (Advice on dealing with agent provocateurs)
  • Have a plan in case you are separated from your friends: Designated meet-up locations at designated times are a good way to mingle but also stay together

Bring:

  • Extra water & snacks
  • Portable battery chargers: Plug all your shit in now
  • Something warm (if necessary): A big square scarf can double as a blanket, etc
  • Sunscreen: Even if the weather is overcast it is easy to get burnt
  • Small amount of cash
  • Identification and important phone numbers written down
  • Flags: If you must bring one, use some floppy white PVC as a flagpole for safety reasons
  • NOTHING that could potentially be a weapon. At all: Unarmed, we are stronger than them.
  • Signs: Bring poster board and markers to share
  • First aid kit: For the usual bumps and scrapes – if you get thousands of people together, someone is inevitably going to twist an ankle etc
  • Garbage bags: Something dry to sit on, collect garbage in, emergency poncho etc
  • Fun stuff: Inflatable beach balls, musical instruments, etc. This is serious, but it is important to keep the tone positive.

Most of all, bring a good attitude. The world will be watching, and what we do at these protests will be a part of history. Keep it peaceful. Be your best selves.

 

That’s it for today.  I’ve got a few things in the pipeline for articles over the next few weeks, mostly in the Cast of Characters.  But, that assumes I get time to do that.  Things are getting busy in the real world.  I’ll explain later.

 

Thank you, and have a good one.

 

“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”

– Katy Tur

 

 

 

Daily Check-In 04/17/2018

Tuesday, April 17th.  Tax Day in the United States.

 

COHEN

 

STORMYWATCH

He looks like a douchier, Dollar Store version of Tom Brady.

Oh, here we go again.

Barbara Moore was the December 1992 Playmate of the Month.

 

COMEY DON’T PLAY THAT

“President Trump, I don’t follow him on Twitter but I get to see his tweets tweeted, I don’t know how many, but some tweets this past couple of days that I should be in jail. The president of the United States just said that a private citizen should be jailed. And I think the reaction of most of us was, ‘meh, that’s another one of those things.’ This is not normal. This is not OK,” Comey told NPR in an interview broadcast Tuesday morning. “The reason I’m talking in terms of morality is, those are the things that matter most to this country. And there’s a great danger we’ll be numbed into forgetting that, and then only a fool would be consoled by some policy victory.”

“This is not some tin pot dictatorship where the leader of the country gets to say ‘the people I don’t like go to jail.’ Our Lady Justice wears a blindfold. And the reason all those statues all over the country have a blindfold is, that’s the way it has to be,” Comey told NPR. “Lady Justice can’t be peeking under the blindfold to see if Donald Trump wants her to convict so-and-so and not convict so-and-so. If we lose that, we’ve lost the rule of law, and so there’s great danger in the president of the United States saying ‘you should be in jail.’”

 

THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION

Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

Back in the 90’s, Ken Starr was the Special Counselor investigating Whitewater, a land deal involving the Clinton family. That morphed into corruption in Arkansas, a couple claims of sexual assault, and eventually Bill Clinton lying under oath about getting a blowjob from Monica Lewinsky.

Throughout the whole process, there were several court cases that were heard, but many of the documents were sealed. On Monday, a judge decided to unseal 11 cases related to the Clinton Investigation.

Before anyone gets off a tizzy screaming “But Hilary” or “Why are reliving this crap?”, this is actually a pretty cool thing. These cases dealt with unprecedented legal items at the time, like “Can the White House be subpoenaed to turn over their visitor logs?” or “Are physical descriptions of the President’s penis admissible in court?” or “Does attorney-client privilege extend to all matters that take place in front of an attorney?” Prescient questions that we’re asking today.

 

COLD WAR 2.0

 

CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA AND FACEBOOK

 

WHITE HOUSE CHAOS

 

THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE

On May 25, 2017, KFAQ, a radio station based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, received a cease-and-desist letter signed by two lawyers for Hannity: Victoria Toensing and Jay Alan Sekulow. Toensing’s signature sits above her name and that of her husband Joseph E. diGenova, the members of diGenova and Toensing LLP, who are identified as “Counsel for Sean Hannity,” according to a copy of the letter obtained by The Atlantic. Sekulow is also identified in the letter page as a “Counsel for Sean Hannity.”

Sekulow is now the only known personal attorney for President Trump working full-time on the response to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s inquiry. Sekulow recently announced that diGenova and Toensing had been hired to join him, before reversing course. The letter to the radio station was sent before Sekulow joined Trump’s team.

The advisor, Elizabeth Pierce, is the former chief executive of Quintillion, an Alaska-based fiber optic cable provider operating out of Anchorage. In her capacity as CEO, Pierce allegedly raised more than $250 million from two New York-based investment companies using forged contracts with other companies guaranteeing hundreds of millions of dollars in future revenue. Pierce resigned from Quintillion in August of last year, and she stepped down from her role in Pai’s Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee (BDAC) the following month.

“As it turned out, those sales agreements were worthless because the customers had not signed them,” US attorney Geoffrey Berman said in prepared remarks, as reported by the WSJ. “Instead, as alleged, Pierce had forged counter-party signatures on contract after contract. As a result of Pierce’s deception, the investment companies were left with a system that is worth far less than Pierce had led them to believe.” Pierce was trying to raise money to help build out a fiber optic system that would wire Alaska with high-speed internet and better help connect it to networks in other US states. Pierce was charged with wire fraud last Thursday and faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.

 

#NEVERAGAIN

 

GOP: THE PARTY OF LINCOLN IS DEAD

Did I go through the complete list of victims? No.

There is one victim. None of us want talk about him.

But given my age, I have the courage to say it. This victim, his name is Alexandre Bissonnette.

Alexandre, before being a killer he was a victim himself. Before planting his bullets in the heads of his victims, somebody planted ideas more dangerous than the bullets in his head.

This little kid didn’t wake up in the morning and say ‘Hey guys instead of going to have a picnic or watching the Canadiens, I will go kill some people in the mosque.’ It doesn’t happen that way.

Day after day, week after week, month after month, certain politicians unfortunately, and certain reporters unfortunately, and certain media were poisoning our atmosphere.

-Imam Hassan Guillet

A Phoenix judge denied Arpaio’s request to erase his conviction entirely, saying in October that the presidential pardon didn’t “revise the historical facts of this case.” The appeals panel, by a 2-1 vote, said that since the U.S. Justice Department won’t defend that ruling, an outside lawyer must be appointed to argue against Arpaio.

 

SAY GOODBYE TO THE ECONOMY: SPECIAL TAX DAY DAY BEFORE TAX DAY SPECIAL

China’s Commerce Ministry said Tuesday that customs officers will charge importers a fee of about 179% on US sorghum after an investigation found the shipments were unfairly subsidizedand damaging Chinese producers.

Sorghum is a grain that is used to feed livestock and make a liquor that’s very popular with Chinese drinkers.

China is the largest buyer of American sorghum products. Its imports of the crop were worth about $960 million last year, according to Chinese customs data.

Yes, I had the exact same question.  What the hell is sorghum?

 

CAN WE GET BACK TO POLITICS?

 

RUMOR MILL:  CALLING A MOBBED-UP SPADE A MOBBED-UP SPADE

Lincoln’s Bible has made digging into Trump’s mob ties into an art form.  Now that Jim Comey called Trump’s presidency a Mob Coup, it’s time to go back and look at all of the hard work he did.

Spicy Mic posted Russia’s Telegram ban is a big, convoluted mess | The Verge earlier.  Russia is trying to ban Telegram, a messaging app that is not infiltrated by Russian Intelligence.  Problem is, their attempts at turning it off are breaking everything else.  Spicy’s holding on to something related to this, and she’s teasing that it’s big.  Let’s wait and see.

Former NSA analyst connects the dots between Sean Hannity, Julian Assange and Russian spies

It’s nice to see the MSM picking up what we’ve been talking about for over a year.

 

That’s it for today.  I was going to get into more detail, but something came up in the real world that I have to take care of.

 

Thank you, and have a good one.

 

“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”

– Katy Tur

 

 

 

 

 

 

Daily Check-In 04/16/2018

Monday April 16th.  It was a nice, quiet Monday, right?

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA Fuck that.

 

MICHAEL COHEN IS FUCKED HARDER THAN STORMY DANIELS IN VENDETTA (2017 from Wicked Pictures link to IAFD potential NSFW)

First, the Wall Street Journal discovered that Michael Cohen used Essential Consultants LLC, the same company that he used to pay off Stormy Daniels, to receive payment from Elliot Broidy.

Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, used the same Delaware limited-liability company in two secret deals relating to alleged sexual encounters involving his clients, according to people familiar with the matter.

Venture capitalist Elliott Broidy paid an initial installment of $62,500 to the company, Essential Consultants LLC, as part of Mr. Cohen’s $250,000 total fee for negotiating a nondisclosure agreement related to Mr. Broidy’s affair with a former Playboy model who alleged he had impregnated her, a person familiar with the matter said.

Federal prosecutors are examining money flowing in and out of Essential Consultants as part of a broad investigation into Mr. Cohen’s activities to silence women with allegations against Mr. Trump or those in his orbit, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Wall Street Journal first reported the $1.6 million agreement between Mr. Broidy—the Republican National Committee’s deputy finance chairman with ties to Mr. Trump—and the model on Friday. Mr. Broidy later resigned his RNC post.

Cohen assisted Broidy in his abortion hush money, and had him pay Essential Consultants 1/16th of a million dollars, or 1/4th of 1/4th of a million dollars.

That payment to his shell company destroys the argument that it was created and only used for Stormy Daniels.

Mr. Broidy paid the remaining fee installments totaling $187,500 directly to Mr. Cohen after the Journal revealed in January that the Clifford payment was made through Essential Consultants, the person said.

The last three installment payments were paid directly to Cohen.

The monthslong investigation stemmed partly from “suspicious activity reports” filed by banks, including one that included details of Mr. Cohen’s payment to Ms. Clifford, people familiar with the matter said.

A suspicious activity report?

The Manhattan U.S. attorney’s office is examining whether Mr. Cohen committed bank fraud by, among other things, taking out a home-equity credit line to pay for the Clifford agreement, a person familiar with the matter said.

Why the hell is a man who’s supposedly worth $10 million refinancing his home and taking out a second mortgage to make a $130,000 payment?

Mr. Cohen transferred the payment to an attorney for Ms. Clifford from an Essential Consultants account at First Republic Bank, according to people familiar with the matter. He has said the funds came from his home-equity line at the same bank.

Investigators are examining whether Mr. Cohen fraudulently used a bank loan for something other than the purpose he described on his loan application, the person said.

The Journal previously reported that First Republic Bank, which Mr. Cohen used to wire the payment to Ms. Clifford’s lawyer in October 2016, conducted its own investigation into the transaction after receiving a subpoena from federal authorities, according to another person familiar with the matter.

First Republic sent its findings to the Treasury Department in a so-called SAR, or suspicious-activity report, the person said. Such reports are required to be sent to the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network when banks observe transactions that have no apparent lawful purpose or deviate inexplicably from a customer’s normal bank activity.

Oh, shit.  FinCEN doesn’t fuck around.

Part of the investigation into Mr. Cohen involves payments made by American Media Inc., publisher of the National Enquirer, and its officials including Chairman and Chief Executive David Pecker, a person familiar with the matter said.

Mr. Cohen communicated with Mr. Pecker and AMI’s chief content officer, Dylan Howard, during the course of negotiations for AMI to pay another Playboy model, Karen McDougal, to sell her story of an alleged 2006 affair with Mr. Trump to the National Enquirer, a person familiar with the matter said.

The Journal first revealed in November 2016 that AMI paid $150,000 to Ms. McDougal for her exclusive story of the alleged affair, which it then didn’t publish, a tactic known in the tabloid world as “catch and kill.”

Ms. McDougal filed suit last month seeking to extricate herself from that contract.

They’re tying  AMI/National Enquirer directly to the Cohen investigation?  They are fucked.

Separately, Mr. Cohen succeeded around 2013 in killing a story Us Weekly was preparing about an alleged affair between Donald Trump Jr., who had been a judge a year earlier on the television show, “Celebrity Apprentice,” and one of the contestants, Aubrey O’Day, a member of the singing duo Dumblonde, according to people familiar with the matter.

The magazine, then owned by Wenner Media, had what staffers believed to be a solid source on the alleged affair by the younger Mr. Trump and called the Trump Organization for comment, according to the people involved in the matter. They received a call back from Mr. Cohen, who threatened legal action and became so irate that they muted the call while he spoke, one of these people said.

“We were all on speakerphone and huddled around the phone,” this person said. “He was just one of these New York characters where he was just like swearing at us and totally over-the-top threatening.”

The magazine’s staff didn’t believe it was a big story that would be worth a legal fight and had a good working relationship with the elder Mr. Trump on stories related to the TV show “The Apprentice,” so they dropped the story.

The story of the alleged affair was reported in entertainment media last month when Donald Trump Jr.’s wife filed for divorce; Mr. Cohen’s involvement in the Us Weekly story hasn’t previously been reported.

Holy Shit, this was kicked off from an SAR sent to FinCEN?! Cohen is fucked. Like, seriously, ultimately, dead man walking fucked.

FinCEN is the investigative and crime fighting arm of the Treasury Department. They are more than capable of taking down white-collar crime by themselves, but if they referred this to the FBI, it means that not only did they find enough shit to bury him alive for financial crimes, but they dug up shit on him that is outside of their purview, and they felt that it was so serious that they had no other choice than to refer this to the FBI.

Not only did they find proof of money laundering and bank fraud, but they found proof of other, non-financial crimes.  Considering that Michael Cohen has been tied to everything from extortion to espionage, it makes sense why they were called in.

Oh, but things get worse.

Cohen threatened journalists back in 2013 to spike a story about Donnie Jr. fucking one of the apprentices on Celebrity Apprentice.

So, not only did Cohen take part in TWO taxi medallion scams in TWO different cities with TWO groups of Russian Mafia and La Cosa Nostra, but he sent emails about his taxi business FROM HIS TRUMP ORG EMAIL.

What are taxi medallions?  Taxicabs of the United States – Wikipedia gives an explanation, but the short version is that it’s a system of regulating the number of certified cab drivers in a city, but the lack of medallions usually means that there is a tiny  supply available.  Organized crime has long used these medallions as a method of Money Laundering

Oh, but it still gets worse…

Last week, instead of showing up at his court hearing last week, Cohen went out on the town to hang out with some friends.  One of them appears to be Rotem Rosen, and another is James von Moltke, CFO of Deutschebank.

Hanging out with a known link to Russian Oligarchs and the Kremlin, and a link to a bank under investigation for laundering Russian money while one is supposed to be Federal court explaining that they didn’t do anything violating the law requires a special kind of stupid.

Oh, but it gets even worse…

Third, [huge redaction], further belying the notion that Cohen is currently engaged in any significant practice of law.

Fourth, the USAO-SDNY has specific reason to doubt that the seized materials will include the volume and nature of attorney-client communications that Cohen claims. This is because the USAO-SDNY has already obtained search warrants – covert until this point – on multiple different email accounts maintained by Cohen, and has conducted a privilege review of the materials obtained pursuant to those warrants. The results of that review, as resported by the USAO’s Filter Team, indicate that Cohen is in fact performing little to no legal work, and that zero emails were exchanged with President Trump.

So, at best, Cohen has three legal clients, and according to the prosecution, hasn’t practiced law in a long time.  Instead, he’s a fixer, someone who does the dirty work that a respectable lawyer wouldn’t do.  He’s a consigliere, Saul Goodman without the legal talent.

Cohen’s team already identified the first two clients in Donald Trump and Elliot Broidy.

Cohen was reluctant to name his third client…

 

THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE: SEAN HANNITY IS COHEN’S THIRD CLIENT

Sean Hannity aired an entire episode last week, two days after the FBI raided Michael Cohen, explaining how Mueller was secretly corrupt. Trump, the President of the United States, endorsed this episode from Twitter. This was TWO DAYS after the FBI raided their shared attorney’s home, office, and hotel room.

Sean Hannity now enters a world of hurt. He and Trump conspired to mislead Hannity’s viewers into going after the FBI and the Rule of Law. Aside from all of the other crap that Hannity’s been rumored to be a part of, this is evidence of Conspiracy to Obstruct Justice.

 

STORYMWATCH

 

COMEY

 

THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION

“The same people who would criticize me for filing this bill would be absolutely angry if I wasn’t pounding the table for this bill if we were dealing with Hillary Clinton,” he argued. “So spare me your righteous indignation.”

 

#NEVERAGAIN

 

WHITE HOUSE CHAOS

Crosseyed Huckster posted a pic from the Situation Room during the Syrian attack showing VP Mike Pence taking part in the attack.

One problem, Pence was in Peru during the attack.

 

COLD WAR 2.0

 

CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA AND FACEBOOK

 

GOP: THE PARTY OF LINCOLN IS DEAD

 

RED STATE TEACHER STRIKES

 

BLUE WAVE

 

 

IN OTHER NEWS

 

IN MEMORIAM

 

RUMOR MILL

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That’s it for today.  This is the new normal.  The more that comes out about Cohen, the worse things will get for Trump and his team.  The worse they think things get, the worse they’ll act.  The worse they act, the worse the reactions against them, creating a feedback loop.

Mueller.  Comey.  Cohen.  Stormy.  Hannity.  Pruitt.  Pompeo.  Putin.  All of them are coming to a head, at once.

And I’m here, keeping an eye on it all, enjoying the shitshow.

 

Thank you, and have a good one.

 

“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”

– Katy Tur

Cooperating Witnesses

Cooperating Witnesses are people that help investigators by providing information against others that committed crimes, often times crimes that the witness either took part in directly or personally witnessed.  Usually, they’re cooperating with the prosecution and investigators for consideration of leniency in their own sentencing.

Just as with most other criminal cases, in the Mueller Investigation, a cooperating witness has to be able to offer something more than themselves.  They have to be able to provide evidence on someone or something more important than them.  For example, if a witness robbed a bank, and they can only provide evidence against someone committing petty vandalism, the prosecutor won’t work with them.  However, if the bank robber can implicate the rest of their crew, or provide evidence against the crime boss that ordered and planned the robbery, the prosecution might be willing to make a deal for testimony.  This deal could include a reduced prison sentence, immunity against certain crimes, or other considerations like serving a sentence in a specific prison or getting extra privileges.

This article, which will be updated over time, lists the confirmed, rumored, and disproven cooperating witnesses, and will be updated over time.

 

CONFIRMED

George Papadopoulos

George Nader

Richard Pinedo

Rick Gates

Mike Flynn

 

 

RUMORED

Steve Bannon

 

 

DISPROVEN

Alex Van Der Zwan

 

 

UPDATE HISTORY

April 15th: Began article and listed names.

Daily Check-In 04/13/2018

Friday, April 13th.  Bad day to be a Knights Templar.

 

THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION:  COHEN WAS IN PRAGUE, ROSENSTEIN AT PEACE, COHEN UNDER SURVEILLANCE FOR MONTHS, TRUMP CALLED COHEN BEFORE HEARING

Mueller’s team had a busy day.  First, let’s recap what we know…

Mueller interviewed Boente, and Trump’s backing out.  But Mueller doesn’t need

Remember in the Steele Dossier when Michael Cohen went to Prague, or somewhere in Central Europe?  Mueller has proof that Cohen was there.  This directly ties Michael Cohen, the personal lawyer for the President of the United States, to a mission from before the election in which he was acting on orders from Trump to coordinate treasonous activities with a rogue hostile state in Russia.

Robert Mueller has the receipts.  Literally.

Of course, no matter what happens, as soon as the Steele Dossier is mentioned, people ask “what about the pee pee tape?” Wait for it.  While it’s flying around the Twitterverse, we’ll probably see it after Cohen realizes how ultimately fucked he truly is.

The 12-page  document, which appears to have been signed by Broidy, outlines his role as providing “political advocacy” on behalf of a now sanctioned Russian bank, VTB.

The deal was  apparently  dated June 12, 2014, just weeks before VTB Bank was blacklisted by the United States and European Union as a key Kremlin asset following Russia’s invasion of Crimea. Russian President Vladimir Putin is guest of honour at VTB Bank’s investor conference every year.

The document raises serious questions about whether Broidy is in breach of the US Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), a law that has gained prominence following the investigation of special counsel Robert Mueller into foreign meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his aide Rick Gates have both been charged as a result of their work in Ukraine.

What is it with all of these high level Republicans stewarding Russian assets?

Elliot Broidy, first introduced on Daily Check-In 03/05/2018, was knee-deep in Thailand and the Middle East, joins Paul Manafort as “People Ukraine want to put in the stretching rack.”

He’s dirty AF, but don’t worry, his day gets worse.  Much worse.  Check out the GOP section for how he’s fucked.

Pun Jar total is $14.  You’ll see why.

 

Comey’s press tour begins, and the attacks against him have begun

Comey writes that Obama sat alone with him in the Oval Office in late November and told him I picked you to be FBI director because of your integrity and your ability. I want you to know that nothing — nothing — has happened in the last year to change my view.”

On the verge of tears, Comey told Obama, “Boy, were those words I needed to hear . . . . I’m just trying to do the right thing.”

“I know,” Obama said. “I know.”

Comey’s book will take a lot of the focus next week, and rightly so.  Expect some weird shit.

 

Cohen’s New York Shit List

Interesting thing about the hearing was that a lawyer hired by Trump on Wednesday night was at this hearing.  There was no mention that I saw of other clients’ sending an attorney to the hearing to fight for protecting the attorney-client privilege.

Oh, and Cohen set up a hush money payment?  I’ll have more details below in the GOP section.

Rosenstein

Ever work a job where you know you’re getting fired?  Eventually, a calmness overtakes you.  No matter what you do, you know you’re gone, so you might as well do what you need to do, and pull the Halide switch on the way out.

How are they going to make the case to fire him?  Leave it to Dipshit Cowpoke Devin Nunes (House Intelligence), Bob Goodlatte (House Judiciary), and Trey Gowdy (House Ethics).

IMG_6002

So, while the President is under investigation, the heads of the three largest committees in the House, two of which have announced their retirements, are demanding evidence from an ongoing criminal investigation in which at least one of the three is a known accomplice to the target subject of said investigation?

That’s how they plan on getting rid of Rosenstein.  He can either hand over evidence to the committee heads who will give that shit immediately to Trump, or ignore it and watch as they hold him in Contempt of Congress, then Trump uses that as an excuse to fire him.

But, in the few minutes since I typed those paragraphs, I realized something…Trump is calling the shots, and he’s not aware of what Rosenstein knows.  He thinks that all they have is Comey’s memo’s, because that’s all he hears.  He wants the memos so he can attack Comey with his own notes, but Trump doesn’t realize that Mueller and Rosenstein have a fuckton of evidence against Trump, not just the memos.  So, giving them the memos might not be terrible.  Bad, but not case-destroying.

Besides, Nunes is an idiot.  He’s setting himself up for an indictment of Conspiracy to Obstruct Justice.  Not that he hasn’t sealed that shit before, but Rosenstein can use this as a trap.  He gives them the information they ask for, but not the actual info. He gives them a canary in the coal mine.  Nunes takes this, gives it to Trump, and ipso facto, proof that Nunes et al obstructed justice.

Or, Rosenstein could drop some indictments on Monday.  Especially against some Russian hackers and their American coconspirators.

 

Trump’s Anger

News flash, overgrown toddler has temper tantrum.

 

Ready to act

Be ready, and stay frosty.

 

COLD WAR 2.0:  AIR STRIKES IN SYRIA, THE PROXY WAR HEATS UP

Like I said on Daily Check-In 04/09/2018, we have a Wag the Dog scenario.  However, France and Britain also took part in the strikes as well.  Let’s see if these attacks are one-off’s, or if this is the beginning of a war.

 

THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE

Sources familiar with the situation told the Wall Street Journal that the White House has been urging Trump’s allies to lash out at Rosenstein, so that if Trump moves to fire him it won’t look like an effort to interfere in the Russia investigation.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is what we call a criminal conspiracy.  No if’s, ands, or but’s about it.

 

CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA AND FACEBOOK

 

SCOOTER LIBBY PARDONED

 

GOP:  THE PARTY OF LINCOLN IS DEAD

Michael Cohen is one of the Deputy Finance Chairs of the Republican National Committee.  His shit was raided and seized by the FBI on Monday.  One of the things they found evidence of was Cohen setting up a hush money payment between a Playboy Model and Elliot Broidy.  Cohen facilitated a payment late last year between Broidy, a 60 year old married man, and a model that he knocked up and urged to get an abortion.  She was paid $1.6 million in quarterly payments over 2 years, starting last December.

Elliot Broidy resigned earlier today, but there are three things that make this a big story in my mind.

  1. The FBI was on this for months, and knew about this a long time ago.
  2. The fact that the Right Wing isn’t tearing their hair out about this man paying for an abortion screams of hypocrisy. The “Pro-Life Party” is suddenly silent.
  3. If the FBI was on this for months, there’s a very good chance that the money either came from, or at least passed through, the Republican Party.  That is a severe violation of probably a half a dozen campaign finance laws, money laundering, wire fraud, and bank fraud at least.

 

RNC Finance Committee Members:

  • Steve Wynn – Chair – Resigns amid sexual assault allegations
  • Michael Cohen – Deputy Chair – Under criminal investigation for bank fraud, wire fraud and campaign finance violations
  • Elliot  Broidy -Deputy Chair – Resigns for paying $1.6M to a playboy bunny to cover up an affair and under criminal investigation in Ukraine for financial crimes

 

BLUE WAVE

 

WHITE HOUSE CHAOS

 

#NEVERAGAIN

Too bad, I really liked the local hardware store that Ace bought out and franchised a few years ago.

SAY GOODBYE TO THE ECONOMY

 

RED STATE TEACHER STRIKES

 

CLIMATE CH..CH..CH..CHANGES

 

STORMYWATCH, FROM THE STORMCENTER 6000 METEOROPORNOLOGICAL CENTER

 

CAN WE GET BACK TO POLITICS?

 

RUMOR MILL

 

That’s it for today.  There was so much shit, I need to do a quick breakdown…

Mueller has proof that Michael Cohen was in Prague, directly on orders from Trump, to work with the Russians.

Michael Cohen organized a payoff between Elliot Broidy, who’s now under investigation in Ukraine for his ties to a Russian bank under sanctions, and a Playboy model he impregnated and urged to get an abortion.  The likelihood that this money came from the RNC is pretty damn high.

The FBI Investigation into Michael Cohen was separate from Robert Mueller’s work, but they are cooperating with each other.

Trump pardoned Scooter Libby as a “fuck you” to James Comey, whose book comes out next week.

Rosenstein knows he’s probably getting fired, and has a plan, as do thousands if not millions of Americans.

Trump is coordinating with Fox News and other Right Wing Media to create a message to push for Mueller’s and Rosenstein’s firings.

The United States, Great Britain, and France launched an air strike against Assad-held positions in Syria that are points of their chemical weapons infrastructure.

Climate change is fucking our shit up.

Kids keep finding guns school bathrooms because people are stupid.

Trump can’t win a trade war with China because a trade war is a stupid idea.

Instead, he’ll try to start a real one to distract from how much of a criminal scumbag he is.

 

Thank you, and have a good one.

 

“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”

– Katy Tur