Monday April 9th and the weekend.
THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION: FBI RAIDS COHEN’S HOME, OFFICE, HOTEL.
Yeah, that happened.
Southern District New York, operating under a referral from Robert Mueller’s team, executed multiple search warrants against the President’s longtime lawyer Michael Cohen, at multiple locations, at the same time. This included seizing tax documents, campaign records, communications with his client Donald Trump, contracts, bank records, and other information related to several legal matters, including Stormy Daniels.
I hate to sound hyperbolic, but this is huge. The prosecutors were able to convince a judge of the following…
- Cohen had information vital to the investigations.
- Communication between Trump and Cohen was not covered completely under Attorney-Client privilege.
- That information likely includes criminal activity.
- If served with a subpoena, Cohen would not cooperate.
- Cohen would likely move to destroy evidence.
- Cohen’s behavior was so bad, a judge decided that several no-knock raids executed at the same time was the least intrusive method of obtaining this information.
- The information on file was so atrocious that the judge ordered these actions, despite Cohen being the personal attorney of the President of the United States.
- The prosecutors and judge feel that there is enough information to refer to Stormywatch as a criminal matter.
Yes, that’s right. Trump attorney Cohen is being investigated for possible bank fraud, campaign finance violations, according to a person familiar with the case. One of these matters is the Stormy Daniels payoff. They’re also looking into a Ukrainian’s $150,000 Payment for a Trump Appearance.
Investigators subpoenaed the Trump Organization this year for an array of records about business with foreign nationals. In response, the company handed over documents about a $150,000 donation that the Ukrainian billionaire, Victor Pinchuk, made in September 2015 to the Donald J. Trump Foundation in exchange for a 20-minute appearance by Mr. Trump that month through a video link to a conference in Kiev.
$150,000 for a 20 minute speech? From a man who has donated millions to the Clinton Foundation for years, and was accused, by Trump supporters no less, of paying for access?
Remember, everything they do is projection. Every attack against an opponent is designed to distract. That’s gonna make Pizzagate look pretty fucking awkward.
But aside from the why, what, where, and how, it’s who. More precisely, who is the SDNY, and why did Mueller refer Cohen’s case to him? This article explains Why Robert Mueller Handed Off the Michael Cohen Raid. There are several reasons why Mueller handed this off to Geoffrey Berman, but the biggest reason is to use SDNY as a clean team, or taint team.
Ok, short version of a clean team. Because they’re seizing documents related to conversations between an attorney and their client, the investigators have to go through them with a fine toothed comb. If they found something that wasn’t covered by the warrant but was criminal, it would be inadmissible in court. So, they have another group of people go through all of the correspondence to see what’s covered by the warrant and what’s not. This way, the clean team can then forward on what’s covered, and leave the rest behind.
Cohen’s office in 30 Rock belongs to Squire Patton Boggs. They also represent Gazprom, SCL, and Cambridge Analytica. Well, used to be his office. He got shitcanned via press statement.
By the way, Michael Cohen is a Deputy Finance Chair for the Republican Party. They’ve wasted no time scrubbing his profile from their page.
- Manafort challenges evidence seized by Mueller
- Manafort moves to suppress evidence found in storage unit
- DOJ dismisses Nunes demand for Trump-Russia document
- Cohen lays down anti-SLAPP card – Mad Dog PAC
- A Second Paul Manafort Associate Has Turned on Him
- Roger Stone says Paul Manafort will never “roll over” on Trump
- Hillary Clinton email case review sped up by Jeff Sessions after Trump demands results
- Michael Cohen Allegedly Threatened a Harvard Student
- Judge again denies bail for Manafort
RUSSIAN ECONOMY TAKES A HIT
- Russian Stocks Take Worst Hit Since Crimea on Sanctions, Syria
- Russia’s ruble, Rusal, Sberbank take hits as US sanctions bite
- Putin redefines his relationship with Russian business with the arrest of a billionaire who recently invested heavily in Silicon Valley — The Bell — Eng
CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA AND FACEBOOK
- Facebook a big contributor to the committees in Congress that will question Mark Zuckerberg
- Whistleblower: Data from 87 million Facebook users may be stored in Russia
- Cambridge Analytica whistleblower says both Congress and Mueller have asked to talk to him about the Facebook scandal and Trump
- How Every Campaign Will Have a Troll Farm of Its Own
- The Washington Post: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to Capitol Hill: ‘It was my mistake, and I’m sorry’
THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE
- Madeleine Albright Sounds The Alarm On Fascism And Donald Trump | HuffPost
- Homeland Security to compile database of journalists, media influencers
- Two anchors at Sinclair-owned station in Oregon refused to record news promos | TheHill
- YouTube illegally collects data on children, say child protection groups
WHITE HOUSE CHAOS
- EPA insiders bemoan low point in agency’s history: ‘People are so done’
- After Raising Concerns About Scott Pruitt, A Number Of EPA Officials Were Demoted
- Banned From the Banking Industry for Life, a Scott Pruitt Friend Finds a New Home at the EPA
- John Kelly blew up at Trump in Oval Office meeting, threatened to quit
- The EPA has reportedly spent $3 million on Scott Pruitt’s security but can’t name any death threats for him
- Congressman to Trump: You’re President Now, Stop Blaming Obama
- Trump’s top national security spokesman to leave White House
- Why does Scott Pruitt need a bulletproof desk, a bulletproof car, and $3 million in 24/7 security?
TRUMP HATES BROWN PEOPLE
- Nevada’s GOP governor: Border duty not ‘an appropriate use’ of National Guard
- Dozens Suffocate in Syria as Government Is Accused of Chemical Attack – The New York Times
- Allstate Quietly Drops Laura Ingraham in Internal Memo to Employees (Exclusive)
- US federal judge rules that AR-15s and large capacity magazines are not protected by Second Amendment
- Ted Nugent calls for shooting “half of our government”
- State knew Pompano gun maker was in business with banned Russian firm when tax incentives offered
- The NRA May Have More Russian Contributors Than It First Said
- Republicans are a no show across the country for town halls on gun action
STORMYWATCH, FROM THE STORMCENTER 6000 METEOROPORNOLOGICAL CENTER
- Stormy Daniels’ lawyer: ‘Major announcement’ in ‘coming days’ on identity of ‘thug’ who made threat over alleged Trump affair
- Stormy Daniels lawyer files renewed motion to depose Trump, Cohen
- Stormy Daniels’ lawyer is already using Trump’s words against him in court
SAY GOODBYE TO THE ECONOMY
- The Washington Post: Deficit to top $1 trillion per year by 2020, CBO says
- The Washington Post: Farmers who propelled Trump to presidency fear becoming pawns in trade war
- Trump: If Farmers Get Hit, They’ll Understand
- Trump Trillion-Dollar Budget Deficits Officially Begin This Week
- Trump’s Retail Website Only Pays Sales Taxes In 2 States. Amazon Pays Taxes In 45. | HuffPost
- No, USPS doesn’t lose $1.46 on every Amazon package
TRUMP TOWER FIRE
- Trump Tower, New York City: Fire leaves 1 civilian critically injured, 4 firefighters with minor injuries – CBS News
- Firefighters: No sprinklers in apartment where fire broke out
- Trump fought legislation requiring sprinklers in NYC buildings
- Trump fought fire legislation and refused to install sprinklers on residential floors of Trump Tower
- Trump Tower fire victim called ‘crazy Jew’ by Prez, friend says
- Trump bragged that his tower withstood a fire — but has been silent about the man who died in it
- Firefighters: No sprinklers in apartment where fire broke out
RED STATE TEACHER STRIKE
- Teachers Make Less on Average Today Than They Did in 1989
- Oklahoma teachers’ walkout gains momentum going into 2nd week
CAN WE GET BACK TO POLITICS?
- Number of California teenagers pre-registered to vote reaches 100,000
- Anchorage, Alaska, voters reject anti-transgender bathroom bill
- California claims bias in Trump’s offshore drilling plan
- WHO: Universal Health Coverage Saves People from Financial Ruin
- The Washington Post: North Korea confirms to White House that it is willing to talk about denuclearization, administration officials say
- Why are Millennials running from religion? Blame hypocrisy
- The race to replace Paul Ryan is on
- Death toll from Hurricane Maria severely underreported due to data shortfall
- The Latest: Nelson says he’s ready for Florida Gov. Scott
RUMOR MILL: WAG THE DOG, AND AN EVIDENCE BURNING PARTY
- The Washington Post: Trump says U.S. to decide on response to ‘atrocious’ Syria chemical attack in 24 to 48 hours
- The Washington Post: U.N. to meet on chemical attack in Syria, though Russia is expected to stick up for Assad government
This is the first time I’ve ever put WaPo in the Rumor Mill, but given the rest of the news, a few voices on Reddit were talking about Trump using Syria as a distraction from the news of Cohen’s raid, sort of a Wag the Dog scenario.
Wag The Dog was a movie about a White House Official that hires a Hollywood Producer to make a war to distract the country from a sex scandal.
I don’t think this will happen, but I wanted to mention what I was seeing. None of the main Rumor Mill voices were talking about this being a possible scenario, so take it as it is.
That’s it for today. If the week starts off with Cohen’s shit getting seized by the FBI, then we’re looking forward to a crazy week. Real fucking crazy.
Time to grab on and hold tight.
Thank you, and have a good one.
“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”
– Katy Tur