Daily Check-In 05/09/2018

Wednesday, May 9th.

 

FOLLOW THE MONEY: A STORMYGATE/COHEN/RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION CROSSOVER EVENT

“We’re in the shit, now.  Somebody’s gotta shovel it.”

– Hercules Mulligan, Hamilton

It’s 10PM, and I’m still organizing this post.  Today’s news is like one of those crossover TV shows for DC shows on the CW; every character has a part, it’s complete chaos, and the most annoying character from each show gets too much screen time.

I’m doing this a little different tonight.  I’ll describe what happened, and try to organize the news to make sense.

Last night, Michael Avenatti dropped a bomb claiming that multiple companies had paid Michael Cohen.  (Daily Check-In 05/08/2018) Among them are AT&T, Novartis, Korean Aerospace Industries, and Columbus Nova, a subsidiary of Renova.  Over a million dollars flowed into Essential Consultants, LLC., the same company that paid off Stormy Daniels and Shera Brechard.

So, what happened today?

First, we get the confirmations from each company.  Not only did Novartis, AT&T, and KAI all confirm that they paid Michael Cohen, but they each admitted to paying more than reported.  Avenatti only release 4 months of payments, but these companies each confirmed a year’s worth of payments.

But each of them claimed, eventually, that they hired Michael Cohen and Essential Consultants for different reasons.

Korean Air

SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korea’s Korea Aerospace Industries Ltd (KAI) (047810.KS) said on Wednesday it had paid $150,000 for consulting services on accounting matters to a firm set up by U.S. President Donald Trump’s private lawyer Michael Cohen.

The arrangement came as the company, backed by state-owned Export-Import Bank of Korea, is competing to sell trainer jets to the U.S. Air Force in an auction that could be worth up to $16 billion.

So, a billion-dollar company says they’re looking for accounting advice from a real estate lawyer? Just as they’re competing for billions of dollars of government funds.

What’s the word I’m looking for? It rhymes with Mibery.

Oh, but the corruption goes even further.  From /u/charmed_im-sure

“In addition, Korea Aerospace Industries paid Mr. Cohen’s company $150,000 last November, according to the records. The company, an aircraft manufacturer, has partnered with the American defense contractor Lockheed Martin in competing for a multibillion-dollar contract to provide trainer jets for the United States Air Force that is expected to be awarded this year. A representative for Korea Aerospace declined to comment.”

KAI vice president found dead amid corruption scandal by Yeo Jun-suk Sept 21, 2017

http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20170921000259

Korea Aerospace CEO Resigns as Prosecutors Probe Chopper Project by Kyunghee Park July 19, 2017

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-07-20/korea-aerospace-ceo-resigns-as-prosecutors-probe-chopper-project

 

Novartis

Novartis said it believed Cohen “could advise the company as to how the Trump administration might approach certain U.S. health-care policy matters, including the Affordable Care Act.”

Health care policy.  Now Cohen’s an expert on Obamacare.  OBAMA WASN’T AN EXPERT ON OBAMACARE!

Novartis, the maker of drugs like Ritalin, paid Cohen 3 times what Avenatti released last night.

 

AT&T

Now Cohen’s an expert on regulatory reform?

 

Of course, Avenatti couldn’t help but poke fun at Cohen, and rightfully so.

I know a little bit about consulting, and one thing that you have to sell the client on is your expertise in the subject matter, and how your expertise can help them.  Cohen either has deep levels of experience that are previously unseen by a “real estate attorney”, or he’s being paid for access.

 

At some point throughout the day, Cohen’s lawyers filed paperwork in court disputing “some” of the findings.

Cohen’s lawyers are arguing that the small dollar amounts belong to different Michael Cohen’s, and dispute about $20,000 worth of charges, out of $4.4 million.  They don’t dispute the rest of it, just the tiny dollar amounts, like $675.00 to Taiwan.

Their argument, though, is that because the tiny amounts are incorrect, the whole report is inaccurate.

That’s like getting caught having an affair by a PI, and the PI lists the mistress, the restaurant you met up at, the car you drove to the hotel, the hotel you shagged at, what positions were tried, what you screamed out when you came, what you ordered from room service, and what brand of condom you wore each time, but claiming the report is wrong because you used Durex instead of Trojans.

Back to the events.  What did these companies get for their payments?

They got “access.”  This is also called pay-to-play.  There’s another word for that…

Bribery.

Of course, the calls for more information continue.  What else is there?  Where did this information come from?  Where did it go?

Remember, Trump doesn’t like it when people make money off of “his brand” without him getting a piece of the action, and Trump still refers to Cohen as his attorney.

Not everyone’s happy with this information getting out in the public domain…

Rich Delmar, counsel to the inspector general, said that in response to media reports the office is “inquiring into allegations” that Suspicious Activity Reports on Cohen’s banking transactions were “improperly disseminated.”

Federal law requires banks to file Suspicious Activity Report on any unusual transactions over $10,000. Experts say the information Avenatti published could have come from a Suspicious Activity Report filed by Cohen’s bank to Treasury.

It is not uncommon, of course, for journalists, lawyers and others in the public eye to receive unauthorized leaks of sensitive information. Stipano said hundreds if not thousands of officials in law enforcement and government have access to a database of Suspicious Activity Reports.

Among other things, banks are required to file SARs if the transaction “has no business or apparent lawful purpose or is not the type of transaction that the particular customer would normally be expected to engage in, and the bank knows of no reasonable explanation for the transaction after examining the available facts, including the background and possible purpose of the transaction.”

 

Collusion is real.  Cohen’s ties to Russia are real.  The Russians have leverage on Trump.

Ok, it’s just one of Trump’s lawyers connected to Columbus Nova, right?

Wait, what? Columbus Nova, a subsidiary of Renova Group, owned by Viktor Vekselberg, owns a bunch of Alt Right website domains?!  Now we’re tying in Horseshoe TheoryTrump vs. Bernie, and Racism And Politics Today, plus a lot of Russian interference in other realms.

These revelations are going to tie back to the Republican Party.  Remember, Michael Cohen is STILL the Deputy Finance Chair of the Republican Party. (Daily Check-In 04/13/2018)

Andrew Intrater, according to Mother Jones, is Vekselberg’s cousin. He is also chief executive of Columbus Nova, Renova’s U.S. investment arm located in New York. (FEC records list his employer as Renova US Management LLC.)

Intrater had no significant history of political contributions prior to the 2016 elections. But in January 2017 he contributed $250,000 to Trump’s Inaugural Committee. His six-figure gift bought him special access to a dinner billed as “an intimate policy discussion with select cabinet appointees,” according to a brochure obtained by the Center for Public Integrity.

Michael Cohen.  Russian Mafia.  La Cosa Nostra (what’s left of it).  Corporate Greed.  The Republican Party.  The Alt-Right.  The Internet attacks.  The only piece missing from this is the NRA, and I wouldn’t be surprised to find out at this point that they wired money to Cohen for “access” and “insight” on gun rights issues.

By the way, why haven’t we heard about this mess with Cohen from Robert Mueller’s team?  The answer will surprise absolutely no one who’s been paying attention.

 

 

5. Is the special counsel Robert Mueller looking into these payments?

It appears that he is. Earlier this year, federal agents working for Mueller confronted Vekselberg after he got off a private plane at an airport in the New York area, according to a recent report in the Times. The article said the agents questioned Vekselberg and searched his electronic devices. It also said that members of Mueller’s team have interviewed Intrater, who is the chief executive of Columbus Nova.

 

Mueller knows.  He’s at least 6 months ahead of this story.  Mueller’s team interviewed ALL OF THE PARTIES, except Cohen and Trump, last year.  After interviewing and reviewing this information, two months later Stormy Daniels hires Michael Avenatti, and they begin their legal crusade against Michael Cohen.  A couple months ago, Mueller’s team referred the Cohen case to SDNY.  This was all part of the plan.

Trump’s supporters love to claim that he’s playing 4-D chess, or 12-D backgammon.  Mueller doesn’t play any fucking games.

 

THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION

Speaking of months ahead, Mueller interviewed Erik Prince sometime this year, after George Nader flipped.  My guess is this took place sometime between Daily Check-In 03/22/2018 and Daily Check-In 04/10/2018.  It had to take place after George Nader flipped, but not likely in the last week or two.  These sources run at least a month behind, and Erik was in the news a few times those weeks.  There seems to be a pattern with people showing up in the news while they’re interviewing Bobby Three Sticks.

IRAN NUCLEAR DEAL

Iranian hackers are legit.  They’re better than the Russians.  Last year, the Wannacry ransomware attack occurred across the world, first hitting Ukraine.  It was released by the Russians, likely one of the Bears, but there were several rumors at the time that it originated from Iran.  Given what we’ve found out about the elite Iranian hackers (Daily Check-In 03/23/2018), it makes a lot of sense that they built it, and the Russians released it.

 

THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE

This confirms what we’ve all known, Trump is a thin-skinned shit who attacks anyone who calls him out.  I, for one, am glad to be “fake news.”

 

FIXING THE INTERNET

 

COLD WAR 2.0

 

WHITE HOUSE CHAOS

 

#NEVERAGAIN

 

GOP:  THE PARTY OF LINCOLN IS DEAD

The Handmaid’s Tale is supposed to be a cautionary story, not a blueprint for policy changes.

I’m curious, does this include an exclusion for their mistresses?

 

BLUE WAVE

 

RUMOR MILL

There was a ton of stuff on Twitter today, with a lot of it being directed at the Main Stream Media.  This information coming out about Cohen’s ties to the mob, Trump’s ties to the mob, Trump’s taste in young girls, and the blatant corruption at hand is nothing new, and was reported to outlets like the New York Times.  What did they do with these stories?

Not a god damn thing.

For one reason or another, which I’ll get to the rumored one in a minute, they didn’t run the truly salacious stories about Trump, and instead concentrated on the fluff, while trying to nail Hilary to the wall.  People that claim that Trump is corrupt AF got pushed aside as crackpots or dismissed like we were reporting on the color of the sky.

Why is that?  Why did so much of the MSM drop the ball on reporting this historical clusterfuck?

One hypothesis, the one floating around the Rumor Mill, is that all of the MSM was bought and paid for by foreign influence.  And this is right, to a point.  Many of the major media arms are owned by parties with foreign interests, and a lot of decisions on what to run comes from above.

Another hypothesis, the one I subscribe to, is that we are in truly historic times, and no one has any clue how to proceed.  There is no template for a foreign power manipulating the election of the President of the United States to encourage a world-wide crime syndicate to normalize their business functions at the expense of democracy.  That means there’s no template for fighting it or reporting about it.  All of the normal rules don’t apply.  It’s not just an organized crime case, or a political case, a sexual assault case, a white-collar crime case, or a national security case, but all of the above, and more.

Reporters are trying to make sense out of it, but they each have their own speciality.  It’s like with police work, they’re specialized into different areas.  Homicide, Sex, Robbery, Taxes, Cyber, Auto, etc.  There’s some overlap, like the Robbery Homicide Detectives of the LAPD, but it’s not common.  Each group of detectives looks at a crime from their angle, but to grasp the whole picture, they need help from all of the departments.

That’s where Twitter and the Rumor Mill come in.  Everyone has something they’re good at, but each of them is smart enough to know when it’s time for another person to step in.  LB has expertise in the entertainment world, while Louise Mensch has close ties to IC sources.  COB has a lifetime of experience in the Navy, while Dr. Kester can psychoanalyze a target in moments.  Eric Garland understands foreign policy and how things fit together in the big picture, while Countercheckist and Tea Pain offer IC insights and humor.  Me?  I make stupid jokes, write, and keep track of what’s going on.

But that’s what is missing from the MSM; they don’t have synergy.  Aside from Rachel Maddow or Anderson Cooper trying to bring experts from different fields together, each unit and reporter is acting on their own.  They’re working for their own papers, channels, or publishers.  Imaging what would happen if the best journalists, researchers, and reporters joined forces to crack this story.  Ronan Farrow working with Natasha Bertrand, Betsy Woodruff, Rick Wilson, Michael Beschloss, along with some of the staffs of the Washington Post, New York Times (not the editorial staff), BuzzFeed and TMZ (yes, TMZ) could make some real headlines.

 

That’s it for today.  I’ll see everyone tomorrow.

 

Thank you, and have a good one.

 

“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”

– Katy Tur

 

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