Daily Check-In 04/18/2018

Wednesday, April 18th.



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.



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?





“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.”



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











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.”



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.



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 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.



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.




Vlad’s tips for effective peaceful protests:


  • 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


  • 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




5 thoughts on “Daily Check-In 04/18/2018

  1. Thanks for posting Vlad’s tips for effective peaceful protests.

    The link “From Reddit…” right under the “RUMOR MILL” headline doesn’t work, and your prefatory comment “User A_RIGHT_PROPER_VLAD has created and shared this useful list. Please give all credit to said user, not me:” (which I found from doing a “View page source”) doesn’t show up.


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