Saturday, December 31, 2016

Friday, December 30, 2016

U.S. Intelligence Report On Russian Hacking: "At Least It Was Not Yellow Cake"

WMD Yellow Cake
At least the "Yellow Cake" Report had cited some sources.

As a 10th grade creative writing assignment, I grade this report as a D- as it failed to address or come up with some type of cover story as to the credibility of what has been found in the content of the emails, themselves.

Clinton Foundation CEO Mysteriously Missing; Massive Conspiracy of Silence by Mainstream Media 

Naughty, naughty Russia!
U.S. Proof of Russian Hacking

How dare you expose U.S. international criminal activity of the Democratic National Committee and the the Clinton Foundation.

What's next?  Will Russia make a public announcement of its Sarin gas and child trafficking evidence it found in Aleppo to the Hague?

As for the technical community, it is my belief they are still laughing about the fact that the CIA and the FBI actually believe that these pretty pictures will hold up in a court of law or the scrutiny of cyber experts.

Yellow Cake is sexier than a Grizzly Steppe.

And to think that we actually paid for this "intelligence" report.

Besides, the report even comes with a disclaimer.  Seriously?
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Day 68 - Where is Eric Braverman?

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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Monday, December 26, 2016

Day 64 - Where Is Eric Braverman?

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Sunday, December 25, 2016

Saturday, December 24, 2016

A New Independent International Institution For Whistleblowing?

Do my eyes deceive me or do I see a new independent international institution intentionally designed for whistleblowing?

This is not exclusive to counter foreign governmental propaganda, this shall include national and international NGOs.

Social media has just evolved to the next level of transforming open source investigations.

I see a new tool to dissect privatization.

I want to play, too.  I have lots of ideas.

My first idea:  Stop Medicaid Fraud in Child Welfare

President Signs Portman-Murphy Counter-Propaganda Bill into Law

Portman-Murphy Bill Promotes Coordinated Strategy to Defend America, Allies Against Propaganda and Disinformation from Russia, China & Others 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Chris Murphy (D-CT) today announced that their Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act – legislation designed to help American allies counter foreign government propaganda from Russia, China, and other nations – has been signed into law as part of the FY 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) Conference Report. The bipartisan bill, which was introduced by Senators Portman and Murphy in March, will improve the ability of the United States to counter foreign propaganda and disinformation from our enemies by establishing an interagency center housed at the State Department to coordinate and synchronize counter-propaganda efforts throughout the U.S. government. To support these efforts, the bill also creates a grant program for NGOs, think tanks, civil society and other experts outside government who are engaged in counter-propaganda related work. This will better leverage existing expertise and empower our allies overseas to defend themselves from foreign manipulation. It will also help foster a free and vibrant press and civil society overseas, which is critical to ensuring our allies have access to truthful information and inoculating people against foreign propaganda campaigns.

“Our enemies are using foreign propaganda and disinformation against us and our allies, and so far the U.S. government has been asleep at the wheel,” Portman said. “But today, the United States has taken a critical step towards confronting the extensive, and destabilizing, foreign propaganda and disinformation operations being waged against us by our enemies overseas. With this bill now law, we are finally signaling that enough is enough; the United States will no longer sit on the sidelines. We are going to confront this threat head-on. I am confident that, with the help of this bipartisan bill, the disinformation and propaganda used against us, our allies, and our interests will fail.”

“The use of propaganda to undermine democracy has hit a new low. But now we are finally in a position to confront this threat head on and get out the truth. By building up independent, objective journalism in places like eastern Europe, we can start to fight back by exposing these fake narratives and empowering local communities to protect themselves,” said Murphy. “I’m proud that our bill was signed into law, and I look forward to working with Senator Portman to make sure these tools and new resources are effectively used to get out the truth.”

NOTE: The bipartisan Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act is organized around two main priorities to help achieve the goal of combatting the constantly evolving threat of foreign disinformation from our enemies:
  • The first priority is developing a whole-of-government strategy for countering THE foreign propaganda and disinformation being wages against us and our allies by our enemies. The bill would increase the authority, resources, and mandate of the Global Engagement Center to include state actors like Russia and China as well as non-state actors. The Center will be led by the State Department, but with the active senior level participation of the Department of Defense, USAID, the Broadcasting Board of Governors, the Intelligence Community, and other relevant agencies. The Center will develop, integrate, and synchronize whole-of-government initiatives to expose and counter foreign disinformation operations by our enemies and proactively advance fact-based narratives that support U.S. allies and interests.
  • Second, the legislation seeks to leverage expertise from outside government to create more adaptive and responsive U.S. strategy options. The legislation establishes a fund to help train local journalists and provide grants and contracts to NGOs, civil society organizations, think tanks, private sector companies, media organizations, and other experts outside the U.S. government with experience in identifying and analyzing the latest trends in foreign government disinformation techniques. This fund will complement and support the Center’s role by integrating capabilities and expertise available outside the U.S. government into the strategy-making process. It will also empower a decentralized network of private sector experts and integrate their expertise into the strategy-making process.

Fake News: The Intensification of Information Warfare

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Newsbud Breaking News: "NATO Chief Auditor in Charge of Terrorism Funding Murdered in Belgium"

This type of investigative reporting is the latest trend called "open source investigations".

If the media and "The Elected Ones" will not do it, we will.

This is what I do and have no interest in ceasing any time soon.

Sibel Edmonds and Spiro Skouras are joined by Newsbud analyst and researcher Ali Sayed reporting from Belgium. Don’t miss this Newsbud Breaking News Alert on the highly suspicious death of a high ranking NATO official in Belgium. Yves Chandelon, Chief Auditor of the NATO, was found dead in the city of Andenne in the Belgian Ardennes. Glaring hard facts and evidences challenge the official’s attempt to cover-up the incident as ‘suicide.’ Join Newsbud team for all the evidences and details in the case that are being blacked out and censored in the US media.

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Day 62 - Where is Eric Braverman?

Social Justice Covers For Oil Pipelines and Construction

FBI Using Deep Dive Surveillance To Extort Bribes For Clinton Foundation?

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Day 61 - Where is Eric Braverman?

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Thursday, December 22, 2016

Stevie Wonder and John Conyers In Detroit Street Naming Ceremony

"Honored to join my friend Stevie Wonder at his street naming ceremony. Congratulations Stevie Wonder." said John Conyers, Jr.
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Stevie Wonder and John Conyers

Isn't it lovely? Stevie Wonder gets a street in Detroit

A grateful Stevie Wonder brought warm spirits to a frigid Detroit afternoon as city officials christened a street in honor of the iconic Motown star.

Signs marking Stevie Wonder Avenue now grace the corners of Milwaukee Avenue at Woodward, a mile from Motown's original headquarters and just two blocks from the site of Wonder's first Detroit home — a house at Milwaukee and Brush where the Saginaw native moved as a young prodigy in  the early 1960s.

"I know things can't last forever, but I'm going to freeze this moment in my mind and make it last," Wonder told fans and Detroit dignitaries ahead of the sign unveiling.

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, U.S. Rep. John Conyers, D-Detroit, and Detroit City Council President Brenda Jones were among those on hand for the dedication, an effort spearheaded by Wonder's cousin Sharon DuMas and approved by the City Council in late 2015.

Amid the speeches and razzmatazz, there was a cozy family feel to Wednesday's proceedings, where Wonder was flanked by his older brother and longtime stage escort, Calvin Hardaway.

A crowd of about 400 braved an hour delay and temperatures in the 20s for the occasion, where Wonder also announced that he'll be bringing his House Full of Toys holiday concert to Detroit in 2017. The annual children's benefit has been a Los Angeles tradition for two decades, with Wonder performing alongside guests such as Alicia Keys, Justin Bieber and John Legend.

Wednesday's event found Wonder delivering familiar messages of peace and unity, declaring his affection for Detroit and breaking into an impromptu rendition of "You Are the Sunshine of My Life."

Duggan, presenting Wonder an honorary key to the city, told the 66-year-old star that the street dedication "is a way of saying thank you for all you've given us."

"You changed history, and you did it getting your start here in Detroit," the mayor said.
Jones lauded Wonder as an "artist whose music has inspired generations, raised consciousness and put expressions of love into words."

A grinning Wonder listened on — and periodically joined in — as a choir from the Detroit School of Arts performed the chestnuts "Do I Do," "Isn't She Lovely" and "All I Do."

From there, it was on to the street corner, where Cass Tech High School's marching band laid down "Sir Duke" as Wonder, Duggan and Motown Museum chief Robin Terry tugged a rope to unveil a blue "Stevie Wonder Avenue" street sign.

"Obviously it's an amazing feeling, unbelievable," Wonder told media afterward. "I never imagined in my lifetime this would happen."

He spoke optimistically about the Motown Museum's planned $50-million expansion.

"As Detroit goes through its expansion and growth, it's only appropriate for that to happen for a jewel (that is) so much a part of Detroit's legacy as Motown," he said. "So I'm very happy about that."
He also applauded plans to make the expanded museum accessible to the blind and deaf.

Asked about President-elect Donald Trump, Wonder — a Hillary Clinton supporter and longtime Democratic booster — mostly played diplomatic, declining to directly attack the incoming U.S. leader.

"Our choice is to do good by each other, or to do bad by each other — to do good for each other, or do bad for each other," he said. "I think that the president-elect has a decision he has to make."

He also paid tribute to Detroit, the city where he honed his musical skills as a teen under the tutelage of Berry Gordy Jr. and Motown's other heavyweights.

"My love of the city is a reflection of the music I've written," he said, later adding: "Detroit is all in everything that I've done."

For now, Stevie Wonder Avenue signs will grace two corners of the Milwaukee-Woodward intersection. DuMas, who led the street renaming campaign, said she'll be lobbying the city to rename the entirety of Milwaukee Avenue, which runs 1.7 miles from East Grand Boulevard to the Lodge Freeway.

"I felt like it was time for this. We lost Michael Jackson and Prince. But Stevie is here," she said Wednesday. "I wanted to give him his flowers while he's here."

Stevie Wonder Avenue joins a list of area streets named for homegrown music stars, including Berry Gordy Boulevard, Aretha Avenue, Miracles Boulevard and Temptations Drive in Detroit. In Royal Oak, Glenn Frey Drive was unveiled earlier this year in honor of the recently deceased Eagles founder.

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Candidate For DNC Chair U.S. Representative Keith Ellison In Detroit

Reverend Brian Ellison of the Church of the New Covenant Baptist Church of Detroit introducing his brother, U.S. Representative Keith Ellison, candidate for the Democratic National Committee Chair.

"We've got to stand up tall for small. Beyond a 50 state strategy, we need a 3,141 county strategy. We need a precinct strategy. We need to make sure our party is putting voters first." said U.S. Representative Keith Ellison, candidate for the Democratic National Committee Chair.

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Michigan Democratic Party Chair Brandon Dillon

This is the first time in history that a candidate for the DNC chair has actually traveled the country, going into the congressional districts and precincts to advocate for voting rights in the Democratic Party.
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U.S. Representative Keith Ellison
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Representative Thomas Stalworth III and
Debbie Williams of Families and Children Justice

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Day 60 - Where is Eric Braverman?

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Amazon and Goodwill Team Up To Hustle Charity

Goodwill is not a charity.  Just watch the videos.

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CONYERS Statement On Criminal Charges In Flint Water Crisis

Detroit, MI - Congressman John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13) released the following statement after criminal charges were filed concerning the Flint water crisis:

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
“We welcome all efforts to secure justice for the people of Flint, including the investigation of criminal actions by emergency managers and others. However, much remains to be done in the pursuit of justice for Flint residents and to ensure that no other community suffers from the actions of unaccountable political appointees that they did not elect."

“The simple fact is that no matter how many people are prosecuted or sued by Attorney General Schuette, it will not undo the damage Flint has suffered. The State must continue its efforts to ameliorate the harms committed in Flint and the Governor and others must ensure that sufficient resources are provided to those who continue to be harmed.  If the state is unwilling to secure the requisite funding, the City of Flint should have the opportunity to bring a civil action seeking compensation from the State for the harms it caused to the citizens of Flint. The State also needs to finally repeal its Emergency Law which is antidemocratic, discriminatory, and a vehicle for corporate privatization, conflicts of interest, and corruption."

“Until Flint’s water is fully safe, its children are made whole, and we see consequences for all those who stripped Flint’s citizens of their political and civil rights to protect themselves, there will be neither justice nor resolution for the people of Flint.”

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Day 59 -Where is Eric Braverman

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Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Flint crisis charges raises scrutiny of EM law

Flint — Two former emergency financial managers — empowered by state law and appointed by Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration to run Flint — now face criminal charges for actions taken during their tenures that prosecutors say contributed to the city’s water crisis.

A yearlong Michigan Attorney General’s Office investigation into Flint’s water contamination issues has targeted the highest-ranking officials thus far. On Tuesday, investigators announced charges against former emergency managers Darnell Earley and Gerald Ambrose, as well as a pair of former city officials.

That brings the number of government officials charged in the crisis to 13. The probe also focused the harshest spotlight to date on Michigan’s emergency manager law and Snyder’s use of it.
Flint — Two former emergency financial managers — empowered by state law and appointed by Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration to run Flint — now face criminal charges for actions taken during their tenures that prosecutors say contributed to the city’s water crisis.

A yearlong Michigan Attorney General’s Office investigation into Flint’s water contamination issues has targeted the highest-ranking officials thus far. On Tuesday, investigators announced charges against former emergency managers Darnell Earley and Gerald Ambrose, as well as a pair of former city officials.

That brings the number of government officials charged in the crisis to 13. The probe also focused the harshest spotlight to date on Michigan’s emergency manager law and Snyder’s use of it.
“This fixation has cost lives,” he said. “This fixation came at the expense of protecting the health and safety of Flint. ... It’s all about numbers over people.”

As result, Earley and Ambrose face 20-year felony charges of false pretenses and conspiracy to commit false pretenses, as well as misconduct in office, a five-year felony. In addition, they face one-year misdemeanor counts of willful neglect of duty while in office.

Former Flint Public Works Director Howard Croft and his subordinate, Daugherty Johnson, also face the false pretenses charges.

Ambrose, Croft and Johnson were each arraigned on Tuesday, with all having not-guilty pleas entered on their behalf. Ambrose declined to comment while leaving the courthouse in downtown Flint.
Croft, who appeared initially without counsel, was briefly represented by attorney Frank Manley.
“He certainly believes that he is innocent of these charges and he expects to have his day in court,” Manley said.

‘Told it wasn’t ready’

In an early morning hearing in 67th District Court, Judge William H. Crawford II approved the charges after hearing from investigators, who spoke of a concerted effort to move the city from its traditional water source — the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department’s Lake Huron system to the Flint River. And they did so, according to investigators, knowing the city’s treatment plant was not up to the task.

Regarding Earley, who served as Flint’s emergency manager from 2013-15, Special Agent Jeff Seipenko said: “He knew the plant was not prepared to produce water and, nevertheless, allowed it to be provided to the public.”

Later, despite rising public concerns over health issues, both Earley and Ambrose, who served as emergency manager in 2015, failed to return Flint to its previous water source.

Regarding Croft and Johnson, Seipenko said the pair “put pressure on individuals at the (Flint) water treatment plant to get the plant to work, despite having been told it wasn’t ready.”

Later, both refused to reconnect to Detroit’s water system.

Many of Tuesday’s charges are linked to an administrative consent order issued by Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality that cleared the way for Flint to switch its water source to the Flint River in April 2014.

The river was meant to save Flint money until it could link up with the newly formed Karegnondi Water Authority and its pipeline system that draws from Lake Huron. But a failure to properly treat river water at the city’s plant resulted in lead contamination and, possibly, a deadly outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in 2014 and 2015.

In 2013, Flint leadership sought the order to help ease the city’s “ability to access bond funding” for the new Lake Huron water pipeline project.

Flint stated it needed to clean up its water treatment plant’s lime sludge dumping ground to get financing for the $285 million project, public records show. The city needed to show its plant was capable of properly treating water.

“Flint was under receivership and could not issue bonds or borrow money unless there was a fire, flood or calamity,” Schuette said during a news conference. “Earley and Ambrose engaged in a plan to execute an administrative consent order, which permitted the borrowing of tens of millions of dollars. ... This was supposed to clean up an environmental catastrophe — a lime sludge lagoon. Money did not go to cleanup. Instead, the tens of millions they borrowed were (put) toward building the KWA.”

Special Prosecutor Todd Flood put it more bluntly: “The sludge lagoon was not an emergency.”
Following Schuette’s news conference, Mayor Karen Weaver echoed the attorney general’s take on the impact of the emergency manager system on Flint.

“We have always thought that was the problem — that profit was put over the health and wellbeing of these people,” she said. “And this really gives voice to that ...

“That’s what was missing when we had the emergency manager in place. Our voice was taken.”

9 workers due in court

Meanwhile, cases against nine government workers — already criminally charged in the Flint water crisis — are scheduled for a court hearing on Wednesday in Flint.

Several current and former state employees face criminal charges for their alleged roles in the city’s water crisis. All face charges centering on an alleged failure to perform their roles in protecting public health.

Stephen Busch, Patrick Cook, Michael Glasgow, Corrine Miller, Nancy Peeler, Michael Prysby, Adam Rosenthal, Robert Scott and Liane Shekter-Smith are all scheduled for a hearing at 2 p.m. Wednesday before Judge Jennifer Manley with the 67th District Court.

The hearing is about the distribution of documents, specifically Michigan State Police documents, in preparation for a preliminary examination in the cases scheduled for March and April. The defendants are not required to attend, court officials said.

Glasgow struck a plea deal with the Michigan Attorney General’s Office in May. Manley took the plea under advisement while Glasgow continues to cooperate with the state’s criminal investigation into the water crisis.

Busch and Prysby are Department of Environmental Quality water regulators charged with misconduct and other crimes.

Rosenthal, a DEQ analyst, and Cook, a water regulator, face charges including misconduct in office and willful neglect of duty.

Schuette has accused Department of Health and Human Services workers Peeler and Scott of “burying” a report about elevated lead levels in the blood of Flint children in July 2015 — about two months before the department acknowledged there was a problem.

Fired DEQ municipal water chief Shekter-Smith faces charges stemming from Schuette’s probe.
Retired DHHS director of epidemiology Miller took a plea deal in September. She had been charged with failing to respond properly to an early report that city children were dealing with lead contamination. In addition, she was accused of instructing state health employees to delete emails pertaining to the report.

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Judge orders search warrant unsealed in Clinton email investigation

NEW YORK - Search warrant in Clinton email probe to be unsealed

A federal judge in New York on Monday ordered a search warrant in the Hillary Clinton email investigation to be unsealed, a decision that probably will mean the public will learn more details about the FBI’s controversial decision on the eve of the presidential election to resume the closed probe.

U.S. District Judge P. Kevin Castel ordered that the warrant — along with the reasons that an FBI agent gave for seeking it and an inventory of what was recovered — be unsealed by noon Tuesday. The documents could be telling, revealing what cause the FBI felt it had to search a computer belonging to disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) for evidence in the Clinton email case.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Day 58 - Where is Eric Braverman?

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©


The report contains key observations and opportunities for progress

cid:image001.png@01D1CEE4.662DFBD0Washington, D.C. –Members of the bipartisan encryption working group – established in March 2016 by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI), and Ranking Member Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) – today released a year-end report laying out key observations and next steps.

For nearly a year, the Encryption Working Group has held numerous meetings with a variety of federal, state, and local government entities, former government officials, private industry and trade associations, civil society organizations, consultants and legal experts, academia, and cryptographers. These meetings have produced critical information, culminating in a year-end report that lays out four key observations and identifies several areas for future discussion next Congress.

The report concludes:

“Encryption is inexorably tied to our national interests. It is a safeguard for our personal secrets and economic prosperity. It helps to prevent crime and protect national security. The widespread use of encryption technologies also complicates the missions of the law enforcement and intelligence communities. As described in this report, those complications cannot be ignored. This is the reality of modern society. We must strive to find common ground in our collective responsibility: to prevent crime, protect national security, and provide the best possible conditions for peace and prosperity.

“That is why this can no longer be an isolated or binary debate. There is no ‘us versus them,’ or ‘pro-encryption versus law enforcement.’ This conversation implicates everyone and everything that depends on connected technologies—including our law enforcement and intelligence communities. This is a complex challenge that will take time, patience, and cooperation to resolve.  The potential consequences of inaction—or overreaction—are too important to allow historical or ideological perspectives to stand in the way of progress.”

Below are key observations of the report.

1.      Any measure that weakens encryption works against the national interest.
2.      Encryption technology is a global technology that is widely and increasingly available around the world.
3.      The variety of stakeholders, technologies, and other factors create different and divergent challenges with respect to encryption and the “going dark” phenomenon, and therefore there is no one-size-fits-all solution to the encryption challenge.
4.      Congress should foster cooperation between the law enforcement community and technology companies.

Based on these observations, the report has identified several areas for future discussion by the committees next Congress, such as exploring opportunities to help law enforcement agencies navigate the process of accessing information from private companies; examining options to improve law enforcement’s ability to leverage metadata; reviewing the circumstances, resources and legal framework necessary to help law enforcement agencies exploit existing flaws in digital products; considering the implications of alternative legal strategies such as compelling individual consumers to decrypt their devices, and the role of encryption in fostering greater data security and privacy.

The members of the working group issuing the report are House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), House Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.), Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.), Ranking Member Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-N.J.), and Representatives Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI), Darrell Issa (R-CA), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Bill Johnson (R-OH), and Yvette D. Clarke (D-NY).
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House Dems: Russia hacking probe needs political 'safeguards'

 Lawmakers say Trump’s dismissal of Russian hacking and his business investments could ‘threaten the impartiality’ of an investigation.

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
Top Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee are demanding intelligence officials put “safeguards” in place to ensure any investigation into Russian hacking is free of political influence ahead of President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration.

The lawmakers say Trump’s repeated dismissal of the Russian hacking along with his possible business investments in the county could “threaten the impartiality” of an investigation while he’s president.

The letter, sent to Attorney General Loretta Lynch and FBI Director James Comey, also calls on federal investigators to make public additional details about Russian attempts to undermine the election, including whether there is a criminal investigation and if so, when it started.

“We strongly and urgently request that safeguards be put in place — prior to the completion of the presidential transition — to ensure that any criminal investigation into these matters is conducted in an independent manner and free of improper partisan influence,” House Judiciary Committee ranking member John Conyers (D-Mich.) wrote Wednesday.

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas), top Democrat on the committee’s crime panel, also signed onto the letter, obtained by POLITICO.

“To the extent that this investigation extends to any U.S. persons — including any associate of President Elect Donald Trump — we ask that you confirm this as well,” they added.

Conyers and Jackson Lee also cite Trump’s potential conflicts of interest surrounding his business holdings, including possible financial ties to Russia, as the need for an independent investigation.
The Judiciary Democrats say any probe into Russian cyber warfare should be treated with just as much importance as the controversial investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server.
“These and other incidents concerning investigatory actions — or lack thereof — in the run up to the recent election have deeply shaken the reputation for fairness previously enjoyed by federal law enforcement and reinforce the need to appropriately handle any pending criminal investigation,” they write, citing Comey’s decision to publicly re-open the FBI’s investigation into Clinton’s email practices days before the election.

Conyers and Jackson Lee also echo calls for an “independent and bipartisan commission” to fully investigate Russia’s actions in the run-up toNov. 8. The letter comes after growing demands from key senators for GOP leaders to establish a select congressional committee to dig into the issue.
President Barack Obama and other top intelligence officials have said Russia was behind the election hacking that led to the release of thousands of Democratic documents, including Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta’s emails and personal information for lawmakers and staffers, and resulted in the resignation of Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz just hours before the Democratic convention.

But the president-elect and some Republicans have dismissed allegations of Russia’s role in the document dumps and the country's attempts to sway voters in Trump’s favor ahead of Election Day.

“If Russia, or some other entity, was hacking, why did the White House wait so long to act? Why did they only complain after Hillary lost?” Trump tweeted last week. He’s also called the claims “ridiculous” and “just another excuse.” Director of National Intelligence James Clapper announced onOct. 7, more than a month before the election, that U.S. intelligence agencies agreed that Russia had conducted the hacking operations in an attempt to meddle in the election.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) has publicly sparred with top intelligence officials, saying they have refused to brief him and other members of the panel on the issue in recent weeks. Nunes last week announced plans for committee members to visit the intelligence agencies in January to learn more about the Russian investigation.

So far, top Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), have rejected requests for a separate probe, saying the committees with jurisdiction over cybersecurity can handle the investigation.

The Senate and House Intelligence Committees are taking the lead on investigating the issue but several other committees, including House Judiciary, have some jurisdiction.

Key lawmakers, including incoming Democratic leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Jack Reed (D-R.I.), have argued that a select panel is needed to head off problems from too many committees being involved.

McConnell again ruled out the idea of a special committee during an interview with a Kentucky PBS outlet Tuesday.

"It's a serious issue, but it doesn't require a select committee," McConnell said. "We already have a committee set up to do this."

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CONYERS & JACKSON LEE Of House Judiciary Call For Safeguards From DOJ & FBI On Russian Hacking Investigation

Conyers and Jackson Lee: Make Russian Hacking Investigation Your Top Priority & Release Investigative Docs to the Committee

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
Washington, DC - House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI) and House Judiciary Crime Subcommittee Ranking Member Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) sent a letter today to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) calling for safeguards to be put in place to ensure the investigation into Russian hacking is made a top priority and is completed in a thorough and bipartisan manner throughout the Presidential transition. Conyers and Jackson Lee also called for DOJ and the FBI to be transparent in their investigation of Russian hacking, by releasing copies of all relevant investigative materials regarding the investigation to the House Judiciary Committee, in the same way it did during its investigation of Secretary Clinton’s private email server.
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Three Real Estate Developers Charged In White Plains Federal Court With Conspiracy To Corrupt The Electoral Process In Bloomingburg, New York

                                "Detroit politics make me giggle"
Pretty Preet!!!  Pretty Preet!!!

Boy, for a minute there, I thought this was about Detroit.

I love my #Superfans.

Shalom Lamm and Others Charged in Voter Fraud Scheme in Connection with a March 2014 Bloomingburg Election

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and William F. Sweeney Jr., the Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), today announced the unsealing of an Indictment charging SHALOM LAMM, KENNETH NAKDIMEN, and VOLVY SMILOWITZ, a/k/a “Zev Smilowitz,” with conspiracy to corrupt the electoral process, in connection with an election in Bloomingburg, New York.   Bharara also today announced the guilty plea of HAROLD BAIRD, a former Town Supervisor of Mamakating, New York, to conspiracy to submit false voter registrations, charged in a one-count Information unsealed today.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara stated:  “In pursuit of millions of dollars in profits from a real estate development project, the defendants allegedly hatched a cynical ploy to corrupt the electoral process in Bloomingburg.  As alleged, to get public officials supportive of their development project elected to local government, the defendants concocted a scheme to falsely register voters who did not live in Bloomingburg, including some who had never even set foot there.  And to cover up their voter fraud scheme, the defendants allegedly back-dated fake leases and even placed toothpaste and toothbrushes in empty apartments to make them appear occupied by the falsely registered voters.  Profit-driven corruption of democracy cannot be allowed to stand no matter who does it or where it happens.”

FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge William F. Sweeney Jr. stated:  “Today’s charges allege the defendants corruptly advanced their own personal real estate projects in Bloomingburg, New York, at the expense of honest citizens who expect and deserve a fair election system.  In their scheme to promote their own real estate development projects, the defendants violated federal law as they schemed to put themselves first.  This type of behavior simply won’t be tolerated.”  
As alleged in the Indictment unsealed today in White Plains federal court:

SHALOM LAMM, KENNETH NAKDIMEN, and VOLVY SMILOWITZ, a/k/a “Zev Smilowitz,” the defendants, were real estate developers who, starting in or about 2006, sought to build and sell real estate in Bloomingburg, New York.  From these real estate development projects, the defendants hoped for and anticipated making hundreds of millions of dollars.  But by late 2013, the first of their real estate developments had met local opposition, and still remained under construction and uninhabitable.  When met with resistance, rather than seek to advance their real estate development project through legitimate means, the defendants instead decided to corrupt the democratic electoral process in Bloomingburg by falsely registering voters and paying bribes for voters who would help elect public officials favorable to their project.

Specifically, in advance of an election in March 2014 for Mayor of Bloomingburg and other local officials, LAMM, NAKDIMEN, and SMILOWITZ, the defendants, and others working on their behalf, developed and worked on a plan to falsely register numerous people who were not entitled to register and vote in Bloomingburg, because they actually lived elsewhere.  People the defendants falsely sought to register to vote in Bloomingburg included those who never intended to live in Bloomingburg, those who had never kept a home in Bloomingburg, and indeed, some who had never even set foot in Bloomingburg in their lives.  The defendants took steps to cover up their scheme to register voters who did not actually live in Bloomingburg by, among other things, creating and back-dating false leases and placing items like toothbrushes and toothpaste in unoccupied apartments to make it seem as if the falsely registered voters lived there.

LAMM, NAKDIMEN, and SMILOWITZ, the defendants, also bribed potential voters by offering payments, subsidies, and other items of value to get non-residents of Bloomingburg to unlawfully register and vote there.  LAMM, for example, agreed to pay an individual $500 for every voter that the individual procured, and LAMM and NAKDIMEN’s real estate company ultimately paid the individual more than $30,000 per month for his efforts.

As alleged in a separate Information unsealed today in White Plains federal court:

From in or about January 2014 through in or about March 2014, BAIRD conspired with others to submit false voter registrations so that he could run for political office and vote in Bloomingburg.  In fact, however, BAIRD did not live in Bloomingburg, and his voter registrations were false. 

LAMM, NAKDIMEN, and SMILOWITZ were arrested this morning and will be arraigned today on the charges in the Indictment before United States Magistrate Judge Judith C. McCarthy in the White Plains federal courthouse.    
LAMM, 57, of Bloomingburg, NAKDIMEN, 64, of Monsey, New York, and SMILOWITZ, 28, of Monroe, New York, are each charged with one count of conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States, in particular to corrupt the electoral process by submitting false voter registrations, buying voter registrations, and offering bribes for voter registrations and votes.  The offense carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

BAIRD, 60, of Sullivan County, New York, pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to submit false voter registrations, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.  The defendant will be sentenced at a future date.  The case is assigned to United States District Judge Cathy Seibel.

The statutory maximum penalties are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencings of the defendants would be determined by the judge.

Mr. Bharara praised the outstanding investigative work of the FBI-Hudson Valley White Collar Crime Task Force, the Sullivan County District Attorney’s Office, the Sullivan County Sherriff’s Office, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, the Internal Revenue Service, and the United States Postal Inspection Service.  Mr. Bharara also thanked the Department of Justice’s Public Integrity Section, Election Crimes Branch, for its assistance in the case.

This case is being handled by the Office’s White Plains Division.  Assistant United States Attorneys Kathryn Martin, Benjamin Allee, and Perry Carbone are in charge of the prosecution.

The charges contained in the Indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©

Monday, December 19, 2016

Day 57 - Where is Eric Braveman?

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©

U.S. Representative Bill Huizenga Admits and Advocates Child Neglect

In any other situation, this would be a case of child abuse and neglect and grounds for removal of all his children by Child Protective Services to be placed in foster care.

Per Huizenga's own philosophy, these parents should not be charged with child neglect as they acted with the same mentality as advocated by this congressman.

Parents arraigned on child abuse charges after 5-year-old girl's burns go untreated

But as many already are well aware, there is a double standard in access to health care if you are poor.

In Michigan, 46.1% in 2015 were eligible for free or reduced price school lunch program, meaning there were at least 687,937 children whose families would not be able to participate in a personal health savings program.

Many parents may already be hesitant to take their child in for immediate medical attention in fear of mandatory reporters to CPS, but, that does not seem to be a concern for the congressman.

According to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, Congressman Huizenga committed an act of child abuse and neglect and should be reported.

  • Negligent treatment, including the failure to provide adequate food, clothing, shelter, or medical care.
Now, that the history of Bill Huizenga's medical neglect of his child has been documented in the public realm through his own words, anyone who is a mandated reporter must report this to Child Protective Services.

Remember, reporting is anonymous.  1-888-444-3911

Elected officials are not considered mandated reporters, but I expect one of his colleagues and/or constituents to respect the law and report possible other incidences of abuse with his children.

I also expect the journalistic community to hold the gentleman accountable.

Final point of contention:  "If the nation does move to personal health savings accounts and families with children cannot afford to pay for medical care of their child, will there be more federal funds appropriated to Title IV-A, Title IV-B, Title IV-E, and Medicaid, once these children who are placed under the care of the States for not being able to afford medical care?"

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©

CONYERS: Electoral College belongs in 1787

Under the right circumstances, the political will for reform can exist.

By John Conyers, Jr.

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
With the Electoral College meeting Monday to formally elect Donald Trump as our 45th president, it is time that we reconsider whether a political compromise approved in 1787 bears any principled or practical reason for being today.

Several serious concerns were raised at a forum I organized earlier this month featuring leading experts in history, constitutional law and political science. Most obviously, we learned that the Electoral College is anti-democratic. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has so far received over 2.8 million more votes nationwide than Trump — the largest divergence between the popular and electoral votes in history. This is the second time there has been a divergence between the popular vote and the Electoral College in the last five elections, and the fifth time that a popular-vote loser won the White House.

We also learned that the Electoral College is rooted in slavery. At our forum, Yale law professor Akhil Amar explained that slave states opposed direct elections for president because “in a direct election system, the North would outnumber the South, whose many slaves . . . could not vote. But the Electoral College . . . instead let each Southern state count its slaves, albeit with a two-fifths discount, in computing its share of the overall count.”

Our forum also made clear that many of the arguments in defense of the Electoral College are anachronistic. Electoral College defenders argue that it serves to check the passions of ordinary voters, pointing to Alexander Hamilton’s view in The Federalist Papers that the Electoral College would help ensure “that the office of President will never fall to the lot of any man who is not in an eminent degree endowed with the requisite qualifications.”

However, the Electoral College does not meet to deliberate about who should be president. The general public does not even know the electors’ identities, and the Electoral College’s choice for president has largely been reduced to mere formality. Members of the Electoral College are party loyalists who are subject to various state laws, some of which prohibit them from even exercising independent judgment. This is why over time there have been very few faithless electors, and none that have decided an election’s outcome.

Rather than protect small-population states and rural areas from domination by large-population states and urban areas, the current system encourages candidates to overlook a majority of states and focus nearly all their campaign efforts on the small number of so-called swing states. In 2016, for instance, both major party candidates largely bypassed three of the four largest states by population during the campaign. They also skipped 12 of the 13 smallest states, from “Blue” Rhode Island to “Red” Wyoming.

Finally, some Electoral College defenders argue that direct elections for president could lead to messy nationwide vote recounts. Our experience in Florida in 2000, and Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin this year, have taught us that statewide recounts under differing and confusing rules bring neither clarity nor finality to our electoral process. By contrast, a national popular vote is historically far more likely to establish a clear winner, avoiding the necessity of recounts altogether.

Many voters have told me that the political obstacles to reform are insurmountable, with a constitutional amendment requiring a two-thirds vote in the House and Senate and ratification by three-quarters of the states. Yet in 1969 I was one of 338 members of the House of Representatives who voted on a bipartisan basis to amend the Constitution to eliminate the Electoral College. As that shows, under the right circumstances the political will for reform can exist.

However, other options are available, with 11 states accounting for 165 electoral votes having already entered an interstate compact to cast their electoral votes for the national popular vote winner. Legislation to enter the compact has been recently passed by at least one legislative chamber in four more states, potentially bringing us even closer to the 270-vote threshold needed for the interstate agreement to kick in.

The Supreme Court has long held that the “conception of political equality from the Declaration of Independence, to Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, to the 15th, 17th, and 19th Amendments can only mean one thing — one person, one vote.”

It is time that the election of our nation’s president and vice president reflect those principles as well. The greatest democracy on Earth deserves no less.

2016 National Popular Vote Tracker
Compiled from official sources by: David Wasserman @Redistrict, Cook Political Report @CookPolitical
*Denotes Official/Certified Results; "Swing State" defined as state that flipped from '12 or was decided by less than 5%.
StateClinton (D)Trump (R)OthersClinton %Trump %Others %Dem '12 MarginDem '16 MarginMargin ShiftTotal '12 VotesTotal '16 VotesRaw Votes vs. '12
U.S. Total65,844,59462,979,6167,804,20348.2%46.1%5.7%3.9%2.1%-1.8%129,075,630136,628,4135.9%
13 Swing States21,433,21422,249,3422,348,06946.6%48.3%5.1%3.6%-1.8%-5.4%43,939,91846,030,6254.8%
Non-Swing States44,411,38040,730,2745,456,13449.0%45.0%6.0%4.0%4.1%0.1%85,135,71290,597,7886.4%
13 Swing States
New Hampshire*348,526345,79049,84246.8%46.5%6.7%5.6%0.4%-5.2%710,972744,1584.7%
North Carolina*2,189,3162,362,631189,61746.2%49.8%4.0%-2.0%-3.7%-1.6%4,505,3724,741,5645.2%
Non-Swing States
District of Columbia*282,83012,72315,71590.9%4.1%5.0%83.6%86.8%3.1%293,764311,2686.0%
New Jersey*2,148,2781,601,933123,83555.5%41.4%3.2%17.8%14.1%-3.7%3,640,2923,874,0466.4%
New Mexico*385,234319,66693,41848.3%40.0%11.7%10.1%8.2%-1.9%783,758798,3181.9%
New York*4,547,2182,814,346348,56259.0%36.5%4.5%28.2%22.5%-5.7%7,072,0837,710,1269.0%
North Dakota*93,758216,79433,80827.2%63.0%9.8%-19.6%-35.7%-16.1%322,932344,3606.6%
Rhode Island*252,525180,54331,07654.4%38.9%6.7%27.5%15.5%-11.9%446,049464,1444.1%
South Carolina*855,3731,155,38992,26540.7%54.9%4.4%-10.5%-14.3%-3.8%1,964,1182,103,0277.1%
South Dakota117,442227,70124,90431.7%61.5%6.7%-18.0%-29.8%-11.8%363,815370,0471.7%
West Virginia*188,794489,37134,88626.5%68.6%4.9%-26.8%-42.2%-15.4%670,438713,0516.4%

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©