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Showing posts from 2017

Lawyer sought money for Trump accusers

The Hill:
A well-known women’s rights lawyer sought to arrange compensation from donors and tabloid media outlets for women who made or considered making sexual misconduct allegations against Donald Trump during the final months of the 2016 election, according to documents and interviews.

California lawyer Lisa Bloom’s efforts included offering to sell alleged victims’ stories to TV outlets in return for a commission for herself, arranging a donor to pay off one Trump accuser’s mortgage and attempting to secure a six-figure payment for another woman who ultimately declined to come forward after being offered as much as $750,000, the clients told The Hill.

The women’s accounts were chronicled in contemporaneous contractual documents, emails and text messages reviewed by The Hill, including an exchange of texts between one woman and Bloom that suggested political action committees supporting Hillary Clinton were contacted during the effort.

Bloom, who has assisted dozens of women in promin…

Woman candidate for congress accused of sexual harassment

Kansas City Star:
Kansas Dem Andrea Ramsey, accused of sexual harassment, will drop out of US House race I suspect that this is not an isolated incident.   My suspicion is that women sometimes act on their urges as do men.  The reason there are fewer cases reported is probably for several reasons including that some men may feel flattered by the attention, or they like women MeToers are embarrassed by the encounters.

Liberals can't hear Obama lies?

Red States:
Why Conservatives Distrust The Media; New York Times Under-Counts Obama’s Lies The Times found only two lies a year for Obama but fact checkers found 71 one that were totally false and that is without counting their lesser degrees of falseness, i.e. misleading.

Given that most fact checkers are liberals who will jump through hoops to avoid calling liberals on lies and then jump through more hoops to call conservatives liars and think it is pretty clear that people in political office have a tendency to say things that sound good to target audiences whether it is true or not.

Texas dominates US oil export market

Argus Media:
Led by the port of Corpus Christi, Texan ports continue to expand their dominant role in loading US crude oil export cargoes, shipping out 79pc of total crude export volumes in the first 10 months of this year, up from 69pc last year, according to a research note from shipping association BIMCO this week.

"Corpus Christi has since 2016, when it exported 24pc of US seaborne crude oil, extended its lead and has developed into the largest crude oil export port in the US by far", said BIMCO.

In the first 10 months of this year Corpus Christi raised its market share year-on-year from 24pc to 33pc, said BIMCO. Rounding out the top three US ports by crude exports so far this year are the Texan ports of Beaumont and Houston, which respectively exported 21pc and 15pc, said BIMCO.

The port of Gramercy, located in neighboring Louisiana, came in fourth and exported 14pc of total volumes in the 10-month period, said the shipping group.

While total US crude export volumes hav…

Democrats won Alabama Senate race through voter suppression and not on the issues

NY Times:
Alabama Win Offers Vivid Lesson for Democrats
Doug Jones’s victory on Tuesday was a measure of the big benefits Democrats enjoy when they put more resources into reaching black and other minority voters. Doug Jones won despite his stand on abortion and immigration enforcement.  He won because Democrats and the media successfully demonized his Republican opponent as an "alleged pedophile" and other slurs about his alleged dating of teen girls 40 years ago.   It had the effect of suppressing the conservative white turnout.  It is certainly not a model for future success.  I suspect that Republicans will be wiser in the selection of candidates in the future.

Democrats are still wrong on abortion and border enforcement.  They have been campaigning in recent months on their hate for Trump and his agenda.  A message of hate should not be a winning issue for them.  While Trump can be abrasive, he has done some things very well that the media will not be able to hide foreve…

US provides physical evidence of Iranian complicity in terror attacks

Washington Times:
The Trump administration offered what it called “concrete evidence” Thursday of Iranian complicity in terrorist attacks, including a missile said to have been sent from the Islamic republic to rebels in Yemen, then used in last month’s attack on the main civilian airport in Saudi Arabia.

Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said the missile was just one piece of an array of evidence of illegal Iranian behavior that the American government is making public while the administration seeks to further isolate the government in Tehran.

The missile and other weapons were being put on display at a warehouse in Washington so members of Congress, the press and representatives of foreign governments could inspect them and hopefully reach the same conclusion as President Trump that Iran is violating U.N. resolutions.

“Now they actually see that the president was right. Now they see that, yes, there are problems,” said Mrs. Haley, standing in front of the missile …

The net neutrality panic of 2017 is based on ignorance of the laws that already prevent what they fear

Daily Caller:
MSNBC Anchor Loses Net Neutrality Debate With Former FCC Chairman [VIDEO]

...
He responded to Velshi’s argument that repealing net neutrality might freeze out startups, reminding him that new tech companies like Facebook were created well before 2015.

“So, you have the Federal Trade Commission Act, for instance, you have the Clayton Act and the Sherman Act,” McDowell said. “Those are three very powerful federal statutes that kept the internet open and free prior to February of 2015.”

“What Title II [net neutrality] has done, in the wireless space anyway, is reduce investment in the past two years by 18 percent,” he continued. “We need about $300 billion over the next decade to build out [5G] networks and every independent Wall Street analyst I’ve spoken with says…the 1,000 requirements of Title II has created tremendous uncertainty.”

Velshi, watching his narrative slipping away right in front of his eyes, came up with a scenario where Facebook could subsidize faster inter…

European leaders may not like Trump but he is infinitely better than Obama on things that matter

Edward Lucus:
Donald Trump’s visit next year is already prompting a frenzy of self-righteous indignation. Politicians are competing to explain how much they dislike the American president and how firmly they will boycott him. Mr Trump epitomises everything the British chatterati dislike. He is foul-mouthed, incompetent, lecherous, reckless, thin-skinned and doltishly ignorant to boot. In every imaginable respect, in fact, he compares deplorably with his articulate, cosmopolitan and scrupulous predecessor.

That approach is based on abundant evidence. It echoes in Paris, Brussels, Berlin and many other capitals of liberal-minded conventional wisdom. But as you head further east, another picture emerges. Startlingly for those who believe that Mr Trump is a Russian puppet, his administration is actually rather popular in the countries that live in the Kremlin’s shadow. Barack Obama’s administration is remembered there as aloof, preachy and inconsistent.

For the authorities in places such …

FBI use of NSA surveillance on foreigners to investigate US citizens misused says whistle blower

Sara Carter:
A controversial NSA surveillance program used to monitor foreigners was also being used by the FBI as ‘backdoor’ to gain warrantless access to American communications, according to numerous former U.S. intelligence and law enforcement officials with knowledge of the program.

The whistleblowers, who recently disclosed the program’s process to Congressional oversight committees, say concern over the warrantless surveillance mounted when it was disclosed earlier this year that Obama officials had accessed and unmasked communications of members of President Trump’s 2016 campaign, allegedly without clear justification.

The process, known as ‘reverse targeting,’ occurs when intelligence and law enforcement officials use a foreign person as a legal pretense for their intended target, an American citizen, the officials stated. The program, as it exists, failed to prevent terror attacks and in many cases made incorrect connections between a foreign target and an innocent American, t…

FBI, Mueller taking a hit in public opinion

The Hill:
Sixty-three percent of polled voters believe that the FBI has been resisting providing information to Congress on the Clinton and Trump investigations. This is a remarkable finding for an agency whose new head said a few days ago that the agency was in fine shape. No, it isn’t.

Fifty-four percent say special counsel Robert Mueller has conflicts of interest that prevent him from doing an unbiased job, also according to this month’s Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll. So, given this finding, the silence from the special counsel on the subject has become downright deafening.

These are significant findings about an operation that was supposed to bring more objectivity and less partisanship to the Trump-Russia investigation. Clearly these numbers indicate that there is a crisis in public confidence in both the FBI and Mueller. What makes these findings important is that, with Trump’s approval rating at 41 percent, these results include large numbers of voters who don’t like Trump yet who now…

California is a deadbeat for those damaged by its failure to maintain dam

Daily Mail:



California has not paid any of the $1.2 billion claims made by those affected by the Oroville Dam crisis, which they say was caused by the state ignoring warnings about its condition. This is part of the high price California residents are paying for the state's failure to maintain infrastructure.

Army to take cyber attacks to the battle space

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Daily Mail:


US Army will soon send teams of cyber warriors to the battlefield, officials said Wednesday, as the military increasingly looks to take the offensive against enemy computer networks.  yer war is no longer a desk job in the rear.  The Marines have also incorporated technological warfare expertise into line units to deal with threats from enemy cyber warriors.

About the FBI text critical of Trump supporters ...

Breath of the Beast:
Let’s not miss the most damning dimension of the texts between Strzok and Page. If you read all of their texts it becomes clear that their complaints about candidate Trump and his supporters are nothing more than ad hominem slurs - no different, really, than Hillary’s “deplorables” remark or Obama’s dismissal of Americans who "cling to their guns and religion" in bitterness. They are an attempt to dismiss a legitimate political movement and the, human aspirations behind, it with irrelevant but pungent slander. They are not texting about policy differences, social problems or even constitutional issues. In fact, these are law officers at the highest levels, who took an oath to protect The Constitution of the United States and they are actively engaged in discussing ways of denying a legitimate political movement its constitutional right to a free and fair election. This is dangerous and disturbing....
... This comes from fear and loathing and not from a r…

Midwest politicians still cling to biofuels program despite its drawbacks

Reuters:
U.S. lawmakers from states that produce corn for ethanol plants said on Wednesday they would consider proposals from Senator Ted Cruz of Texas to help the oil refining industry cope with the nation’s biofuels regulation, but would never agree on anything that diminishes the program.

The price of U.S. renewable fuel credits sunk to their lowest levels in two months amid ongoing efforts by President Donald Trump’s administration to mediate talks between the rival oil and corn industries over the Renewable Fuels Program.

Representatives of both sides gathered on Wednesday at the White House and it was agreed that Cruz would circulate proposals to corn-state lawmakers in the weeks ahead that could help oil refining companies meet the RFS, according to the offices of Iowa Republican Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst.

The RFS requires refiners to blend increasing amounts of biofuels like corn-based ethanol into the fuel supply every year, a burden the refining industry says no…

Media still pretends that Russian collusion with Clinton campaign did not happen

Washington Post:
Doubting the intelligence, Trump pursues Putin and leaves a Russian threat unchecked

Nearly a year into his presidency, Trump continues to reject the evidence that Russia waged an unprecedented assault on a pillar of American democracy and supported his run for the White House. Interviews with more than 50 U.S. officials show that the personal insecurities of the president have impaired the government’s response to a national security threat, with Trump resisting or attempting to roll back efforts to hold Moscow to account as he tries to forge a partnership with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The intelligence community lost the President's trust on this issue when they directly, and indirectly, accused him of colluding with the Russians.  He knew that not to be the case and so became less likely to believe them on other aspects of Russian interference in the election. 

But perhaps the intelligence communities biggest mistake is not realizing that the dirty dossie…

Many Muslims in Sweden are ethnic and religious bigots

NY Times:
The Uncomfortable Truth About Swedish Anti-Semitism By PAULINA NEUDING Protesters call for an intifada and promise to “shoot the Jews.” This comes from many of the same people who have also imported a Muslim rape culture into Sweden.  The Swedes, in turn, have bent over backward to be tolerant of this intolerance.

The country now has no-go zones that many on the left deny exist.   It is clearly not a safe country for Jews and has become unsafe for Swedes too.  Yet they continue to pretend everything is OK.

In fact, they get angry if anyone points out their problems.

William Jacobson has more on the problems in Sweden.

Irony alert--Fusion GPS complains about leaks

Washington Times:
Fusion GPS, the master of anonymous leaks to Washington’s media establishment, now is complaining about news leaks against it.

In a running court battle with House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, a Fusion lawyer and a company partner complained to U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon that issues discussed in private have reached the press.

Mr. Nunes, California Republican, is investigating the opposition research firm’s role in trying to prove Trump-Russia collusion. He has signed subpoenas for Fusion’s bank records and wants more. One press leak was the identity of TD Bank.

“Now, I don’t have proof,” attorney Steven M. Salky of Zuckerman Spaeder told Judge Leon at a recent hearing. “I’m never going to be able to have proof, your honor, as to how Fox News got that information or how the WashingtonExaminer got the information from the bank, but I’m pretty confident that it wasn’t from Fusion or the bank.”

Glenn Simpson, a Fusion founder and former Wall Street J…

Why would anyone want to date an intersectional feminist?

Kurt Schlichter:
Recently, a young being – I don’t want to presume its gender identity, but it’ll probably throw a hissy fit about my blatant chrono-shaming anyway – scribbled an article titled 10 Things Every Intersectional Feminist Should Ask On a First Date for his/her/xir fellow liberal freaks. It’s an illuminating view into the twisted minds of the SJWs, but the article never answers the first question we all asked ourselves reading the title: “Why the hell would anyone ever date an intersectional feminist?”

Masochism? Threats? Lost a bet?

Anyway, her/his/xir article is meant to help her/his/xir readers determine whether their prospective mates will be adequate “accomplices in the fight against white supremacy, queerphobia, and misogyny” because “[i]f you’re not going to support marginalized folks, then we can’t be friends, let alone date. The personal is political.” Wow, he/she/xe seems super fun, huh?

We Normals seek accomplices in reproduction, while SJWs seek accomplices in ideo…

Boost phase missile defense attacks before decoys can be deployed

USNI Proceedings:
Taking out incoming missiles during the boost phase – the period just after launch – is something the military’s missile defense leadership is confident will occur in the not too distant future. Speaking Wednesday at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Rear Adm. Jon Hill, deputy director of the Missile Defense Agency, said the continental U.S. is safe for the moment, but his team is focusing on how to defend against an ever-evolving threat. Hill’s talk, part of the Maritime Security Dialogue series, was co-hosted by CSIS and the U.S. Naval Institute.

“The defense system we have in place today will defend against the threat as we understand it today,” Hill said. “What we’re concerned about is tomorrow’s threat as it continues to increase.”

With countries such as North Korea and Iran continuing to enhance their missile technology, Hill said the Missile Defense Agency’s goal is building and maintaining a robust layered defense system as ship-based and land-…

Christian concern about moving US embassy to Jerusalem makes no sense

Washington Post:
In the Middle East, Christians stew over Trump’s Jerusalem move

As Vice President Pence prepares to visit the region, the White House is facing an awkward backlash from the Christians it pledged to protect after its decision to recognize Jerusalem as the Israeli capital and move the U.S. Embassy there. Is there any place in the Middle East where Christians have more freedom of worship than they do in Israel?  How many Christian churches are in Gaza?  How about most Arab countries.  In Turkey historic church builds were converted to mosques or torn down, yet for some reason, these people think moving the embassy to what is already Israel's capital is a problem?

In the US most Christians seem pleased with the move of the embassy. 

I have always thought the Palestinian claim to Jerusalem was specious.  It appears to be more out of spite than based on in viable claim of ownership.  In all of recorded history, Jerusalem has only been teh capital of the Jews.  There is z…

In a competitive environment why would internet service providers degrade their service to customers

Washington Post:
FCC poised to repeal net neutrality rules in a sweeping act of deregulation

Internet providers would be able to speed up service for some apps and websites — and block or slow down others — in the expected repeal of Obama-era rules for broadband companies such as AT&T and Verizon. I think customers will want to go with the provider that offers them the best service.  That is what I do now.  I tried satellite service and it sucked because they limited the time spent online and when it was exceeded slowed the service to a point that is was worse than dial-up.  The phone company offered DSL which was better and cheaper.  Big cities have more competition and faster speeds and judging by their ads no one is touting slower service.

So why do they keep electing people like John Conyers?

NY Times:
Why Black Voters Backed Jones: ‘It’s a Matter of Character’
Turned off by Roy S. Moore and the Trump administration, African-Americans turned out at levels that ensured victory for the Democratic candidate. While it is pretty clear that Roy Moore had a perceived character problem so do a lot of people blacks have supported not only from their own community but also people like Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton.   But if they are going to start voting on character I think that is bad news for a lot of Democrats.

Rationed healthcare in Canada has ever longer wait times for treatment

Washington Free Beacon:
Waiting times for medically necessary health care services under Canada's single-payer system have hit a record high, according to a report from the Fraser Institute.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) has touted Canada's single-payer system, saying it is a model the United States should follow. He introduced a "Medicare for All" plan this past September.

"The issue that has got to be studied is how does it happen that here in Canada they provide quality care to all people, and I don't think there is any debate that the quality of care here is as good or better than the United States, and they do it for half the cost," Sanders said.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) cosponsored Sanders's bill, saying she believes the measure will bring high-quality and low-cost care to Americans. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.) wrote a provisionin Sanders's bill allowing Americans to buy into a public plan during the transition to single-payer…

The conflict of interest within the Mueller investigation

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Trey Gowdy makes the case that most of the members of teh Mueller team have conflicts of interest that should disqualify them from the job.  It is a powerful argument that Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein tries unsuccessfully to avoid.

Corruption in South America contracting ensnares Ecuador VP

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BBC:
The vice-president of Ecuador has been sentenced to six years in jail in connection with corruption at the Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht.

Jorge Glas is the highest-ranking politician to be convicted in the scandal that has spread across Latin America and further afield.

Prosecutors said he took $13.5m (£10.2m) in bribes.

The president had removed his duties from him, and he had been in preventative custody since October.

He is the highest-ranking politician to be convicted in the Odebrecht scandal.

The company routinely gave bribes to win business, particularly in government contracts. It has admitted to paying $788m in bribes across 12 countries.
Odebrecht's massive web of corruption

Glas was arrested on 2 October.

Vice-president since 2013, he was re-elected to the post in February. But with corruption allegations mounting against him, he was relieved of his duties by President Lenín Moreno in August.

As part of a plea deal, former top Odebrecht executive in Ecuador Jose Con…

Putin says allegations of collusion between Russia and Trump campaign were invented by Dems

AP/Washington Times:
Allegations of collusion between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russia have been “invented” by his political foes to undermine his legitimacy, Russian President Vladmir Putin said Thursday, adding that the reports have undermined the U.S. political system.

Speaking at his annual marathon news conference, Putin reaffirmed his firm denial of meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

“All of it was invented by people who oppose President Trump to undermine his legitimacy,” he said. “I’m puzzled by that. People who do it are inflicting damage to the domestic political situation, incapacitating the president and showing a lack of respect for voters who cast their ballots for him.”

He argued that Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak, whose contacts with Trump’s entourage are part of the FBI and Congressional probes into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, was simply performing his routine duties like any other ambassador.

Putin also insisted Russia’s state-fund…

Democrats' hopes for taking senate tied to getting more Roy Moores to run against

Washington Examiner:
Democrats see chances of taking Senate in 2018 rise after Alabama The Democrats did not win on the issues in Alabama.  They won on the effective character assassination of the Republican nominee.  That sometimes happens, but it is certainly no indication of a trend. 

A lot can happen in the next year, but despite the noise that hovers around President Trump and his antagonist in the media and on the left, his policies are working.  The economy is growing and more people are working.  ISIS's caliphate has been destroyed and the US now has a more effective strategy in Afghanistan.

Trump has improved the US trade relationship with China and has so far flustered the kooks who rule North Korea. 

The Democrats Russian collusion case is blowing up in their face and so far Mueller has not been able to find any evidence of collusion.  The bigger scandal is how the Clinton administration spent money on their own collusion with Russians to attack Trump and then used the D…

The DOJ-FBI coup attempt against Trump

Daily Wire:
On Wednesday, CNN published text messages between the former second-in-command in FBI counterintelligence, Peter Strzok, and his mistress and co-worker Lisa Page. Strzok was involved in the Hillary Clinton email investigation, instrumental in helping to launch the investigation into supposed collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign, and staffed on the Trump-Russia investigation itself. He was fired by special investigator Robert Mueller after these texts were uncovered.

Now, one of those texts may wound the special investigation beyond repair.

That text is dated August 15, 2016. Strzok texted Page, “I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in [deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe’s] office that there's no way he gets elected -- but I'm afraid we can't take that risk. It's like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you're 40…”

This looks an awful lot like motivation for launching an investigation into Trump in order …

After ISIS defeat the A-10 maybe returning to Afghanistan

Military Times:
America’s beloved A-10 Thunderbolt II ―the “Warthog” ― may be headed back to Afghanistan, Military Times has learned.

A senior Afghan defense official told Military Times that the Afghan government wants the aircraft to return. However, discussions to bring the A-10 to Afghanistan are in early stages, and no decision to bring the aircraft back into theater has been made.

“The discussions of what forces we move to Afghanistan or drawdown from Iraq and Syria are all ongoing,” Air Force Brig. Gen. Lance Bunch, director of U.S. air operations in Afghanistan, told reporters at the Pentagon. “We have not made any decisions at this time to move A-10s, that I know of.”

As operations against ISIS in Iraq and Syria wind down, other air assets may be flexed to Afghanistan. In recent months, six additional F-16s and a KC-135 Stratotanker have bolstered U.S. air assets in the country. There are currently 18 F-16s in country, according to a Pentagon official.

A-10s have been vital t…

Dirty dossier firm hired DOJ official's wife to investigate Trump

Fox News:
A co-founder of the opposition research firm Fusion GPS acknowledged in a new court document that his company hired the wife of a senior Justice Department official to help investigate then-candidate Donald Trump last year.

The confirmation from Glenn Simpson came in a signed declaration filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., and provided a fuller picture of the nature of Nellie Ohr’s work – after Fox News first reported on her connection to Fusion GPS.

Her husband, Bruce Ohr, was demoted at the DOJ last week for concealing his meetings with the same company, which commissioned the anti-Trump “dossier” containing salacious allegations about the now-president. Together, the Fusion connections for Mr. and Mrs. Ohr have raised Republican concerns about objectivity at the Justice Department, and even spurred a call from Trump’s outside counsel for a separate special prosecutor.

Simpson’s statement shows Mrs. Ohr was indeed involved in the Trump research. He said bank …

Keeping talking Kirsten Gillibrand, you are reminding us who you really are

Sarah Rumpf:
Kirsten Gillibrand Won’t Shut Up About Being ‘Silenced’ You remind us that you are an intellectual lightweight liberal who is out of her league.  You are trying to overthrow the will of the votes with unsubstantiated charges.  The President is right to ignore your demands.

You are using the same response as Sen. Warren and the last things Trump are the Republicans would want to do is silence her.  They would prefer to make her the face of the Democrat party so they can run against her.

Does this explain why FBI did not prosecute Clinton's mishandling of classified materials?

NY Times:
Clinton ‘Just Has to Win,’ F.B.I. Officials Texted in 2016
An agent who was removed this summer from the special counsel investigation of the Trump campaign was found to have exchanged text messages in 2016 that described a potential Trump victory as “terrifying.” Other messages criticized the Clinton team and the Obama administration. I think it does.

It also probably partially explains this:

Republicans Plan to Accuse Justice Department of Bias
A chorus of Republicans is questioning the impartiality of the Justice Department and its special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, in an attempt to counter the drumbeat of news about Russian interference in the election. At this point, the FBI and the DOJ have also lost a good bit of the trust of Republicans who see both the Clinton investigation and the Russian interference probe as being unfair.  The idea that the Clinton campaign could indirectly pay Russian intelligence operatives for the dirty dossier that would then be used as a …

Threats aimed at Israel because of Jerusalem not likely to result in action

Tom Rogan:
In recent days, the leaders of Iran's Revolutionary Guard external action force, Hezbollah, and Hamas have all pledged to retake Jerusalem from Israel.

It's not going to happen.

Amidst the growing likelihood of regional war, these threats cannot be considered idle. Working together, Israel's enemies could create havoc in its southern and northern border areas proximate to Gaza, Syria, and Lebanon. In addition, Iran has the missile capabilities to strike deep inside Israeli territory.

Fortunately, however, Israel's capabilities far exceed those of its adversaries.

For a start, it would be nearly impossible for an Iranian-led alliance to invade Israeli territory and reach Jerusalem. The Israeli Defense Forces retain a dominant position in being able to block all lines of approach to Jerusalem. At the same time, because of dramatically improved relations between Israel, Egypt, and Jordan, any attack on Jerusalem would have to come from Lebanese or Syrian territ…

Democrat run Consumer Financial Protection Bureau accused of falsifying data to make a case against Texas company

Washington Free Beacon:
A former employee of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is calling for an investigation after accusing managers of falsifying documents to impose fines on a payday lender.

Cassandra Jackson, a former CFPB examiner in the southeast division, sent a letter last week to Attorney General Jeff Sessions also accusing managers of "widespread racism and gender discrimination."

Jackson said her superiors at the CFPB asked her to falsify documents during her investigation into a Texas-based payday lending company, Ace Cash Express.

"During the course of this examination, I was asked to change, remove, and otherwise falsify documents connected with this examination," Jackson said.

Jackson said she was asked to remove document evidence proving Ace Cash Express was complying with CFPB rules and to write a report including findings she knew to be "false and fabricated."

"I was specifically told to cite Ace Cash Express for a violation…

Who knew?--Women enjoy flirting with men too

D.C. McAllister:

Can We Be Honest About Women?

Here’s a little secret we have to say out loud: Women love the sexual interplay they experience with men, and they relish men desiring their beauty. What some men are finding is that there are limits to how much they can get away with and the woman is in charge of that decision.

Text between FBI agent and agency lawyer are pretty damning

Washington Examiner:
The Justice Department provided congressional committees with hundreds of text messages between Peter Strzok — the agent on special counsel Robert Mueller’s team who was demoted for critical messages about President Trump — and his alleged mistress Lisa Page, a lawyer also assigned to the probe.

Those text messages were obtained by the Washington Examiner, and show extreme political opinions shared about the two dating back to 2015.

One message from Page to Strzok is a link to a story about Trump and Russian president Vladimir Putin, with the text “What an utter idiot.”

In Nov. 2015, Page said she hopes House Speaker Paul Ryan “falls and crashes in a blaze of glory,” to which Strzok replied: “Yes, And me too. At some point the Rep party needs to pull their head out of their *ss. Shows no sign of occurring any time soon.”

“Martin O’Malley’s a freak show,” Strzok messaged Page in Jan. 2016, a reference to the former governor of Maryland who ran a brief campaign for …

Donald Trump, Jr. seeks an investigation of leaks by Democrats on the House Intelligence committee

Washington Examiner:
Donald Trump Jr. requested the House Intelligence Committee launch an investigation concerning leaks during and after his private meeting with the committee last week.

Trump Jr.’s attorney, Alan Futerfas, submitted a letter Tuesday to Chairman Michael Conaway, R-Texas, addressing comments made by three California Democratic members of the panel: Rep. Adam Schiff, the panel's ranking member, and Reps. Jackie Speier and Eric Swalwell.

The letter alleges that members and staffers started “selectively leaking information” ahead of the meeting’s conclusion, according to multiple media reports.

Trump Jr. met with the panel as part of its Russia interference inquiry.

Schiff told reporters after the hearing that Trump Jr. did not discuss details related to a July phone call with President Trump after the now-infamous Trump Tower meeting that occurred in June 2015, where members of the Trump campaign had been told ahead of time they would receive damaging information a…

Wind and solar energy companies push for tax breaks for their inefficient production

Washington Times:
It’s become a national leader in wind-power generation, but in deep-red, oil-rich Texas, many conservatives still turn a skeptical eye toward renewable energy — despite growth numbers that dwarf virtually every other sector of the economy.

For Jeff Clark, who heads The Wind Coalition in Texas, the fact that political posturing often seems to overrule hard data can be mind-boggling.

“As soon as I say, ‘Oh, by the way, it’s clean and it doesn’t contribute to climate change,’ I’ve just lost half my audience. The joke is, Would you love me more if I was dirtier?” said Mr. Clark, offering a tongue-in-cheek take on the immediate instinct of many Republicans to promote only fossil fuels.

As Republican leaders in Washington craft a once-in-a-generation tax reform bill that they say will spur unprecedented economic growth, critics contend that Republican leaders on Capitol Hill and in the White House are missing a key chance to promote wind and solar power.

In recent years, the e…

Russian hacker tells court FSB him ordered to hack Clinton's emails

Times:
A Russian hacker has told a court in Moscow that he was ordered by Kremlin spymasters to steal emails linked to Hillary Clinton.

Konstantin Kozlovsky is on trial accused of being part of Lurk, a group accused of stealing 3 billion roubles (£38 million) from banks by infecting computer systems with malware.

A transcript of a hearing in his trial which was posted on his Facebook page records Mr Kozlovsky, 29, saying: “I fulfilled various tasks under the direction of employees of the FSB [the secret service] in particular the hacking of the US Democratic National Committee [DNC] and the electronic messages of Hillary Clinton, as well as breaking in to very serious US military enterprises.”

Almost 20,000 emails were stolen from the DNC and published by Wikileaks in July last year. The messages suggested that the committee had tried to undermine the campaign of Bernie Sanders, Mrs Clinton’s rival to run as Democratic candidate in the US presidential election. Wikileaks later publish…

Possible recount in Alabama senate race

The Hill:
Alabama Republican Roy Moore is refusing to concede in Tuesday's special Senate election, which has been called for Democrat Doug Jones.

Moore and his campaign are holding out hope as the final ballots are cast in case the margin dips to 0.5 percent or below, triggering an automatic recount.

It's unclear whether that will come to pass, as Jones led Moore by 1.5 percent into late Tuesday night. But it's clear that no winner will be certified until at least Christmas.

Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill told reporters during an impromptu Tuesday night press conference in his state capitol office that the state will direct counties to count provisional ballots, absentee ballots and military ballots.

Those final numbers will be due to Merrill's office by Dec. 22, after which the results will be certified sometime between Dec. 26 and Jan. 3 of next year.

If the final numbers show a tight enough margin, the state's recount provision is automatically trigger…

Cooking fire for homeless caused fire near Los Angelos

LA Times:
The fire that destroyed six homes and damaged a dozen others in Bel-Air last week was caused by a cooking fire at a nearby homeless encampment, Los Angeles fire officials said Tuesday.

For a “number of years,” homeless people had been living in a camp along Sepulveda Boulevard where it passes under the 405 Freeway, Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Peter Sanders said.

Investigators who inspected the encampment found evidence that people had been cooking and sleeping in the area but did not find anyone there, Sanders said. The department has no suspects, he said.

Los Angeles has been struggling in recent years with a major uptick in the homeless population, with encampments spreading out from downtown L.A. into neighborhoods across the city. A report in May put the homeless population in Los Angeles County at 58,000, a 23% increase over the last year.

The count found that the homeless population in the West L.A. service area — which included the Bel-Air and Brentwood neig…

Mueller refuses to answer question about who prepared the FISA warrant on Trump officials

Glenn Reynolds:
SO I JUST HAD AN INTERESTING EMAIL EXCHANGE WITH THE SPECIAL COUNSEL’S PRESS OFFICE: Me: I’m hearing from a source that Lisa Page was involved in approving Peter Strzok’s warrant requests to the FISC and possibly elsewhere. Can you confirm or deny if this was the case? And please tell me what her job title and function are in your office. Thanks.Them (via spokesman Joshua Stueve): Lisa Page, who was an attorney on detail to the Special Counsel’s office, returned to the FBI’s Office of the General Counsel in mid-July.Me again: Thank you but that doesn’t answer my question. What role did Lisa Page have in the handling of warrant applications, and in particular those involving Peter Strzok?Them again: I’ll decline to comment further.Well, then.
Page, remember, is the FBI lawyer with whom Strzok was having an extramarital affair and exchanging anti-Trump texts. Perhaps someone with more resources than I will be able to get to the bottom of this. (Bumped). John Hinderaker puts the…

Hostile media thinks THEY are under attack

Newsbusters:
As Monday’s throwdown in the White House press room made clear, relations between the President and the press corps are as bad as they have ever been during the Trump administration.

Most journalists seem to put the blame on the administration’s criticisms of the press, with CNN’s Chris Cilizza saying Press Secretary Sarah Sanders’ condemnations were “disheartening” and made him “angry.” A couple of weeks ago, disgraced ex-CBS anchor Dan Rather called the President’s attacks on the news media “disappointing.

“If you look over the arc of history,” Rather lectured MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle in late November, “presidents who have been very hostile to the press have not wound up very good in terms of having their likeness carved into Mt. Rushmore or anything approaching that....You know that old cliche, if you’re in a hole, stop digging. In terms of his press relations, he just keeps digging.”

This week, Rather repeated his complaint to the Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart. “A …

Many got it wrong in Syria by tying Assad to ISIS

Max Abrahms and John Glaser:
The Islamic State is a shadow of its former self. In 2014, the extremist group seemed to make substantial inroads in achieving its stated goal of a caliphate. It boasted tens of thousands of fighters and territorial control over an area roughly the size of South Korea. By almost every metric, Islamic State has collapsed in its Syria stronghold, as well as in Iraq. As a former foreign fighter recently admitted, “It’s over: there is no more Daesh left,” using an Arabic acronym for Islamic State.

The rollback of Islamic State must come as a shock to the chorus of journalists and analysts who spent years insisting that such progress would never happen without toppling the regime of Bashar Assad — which is, of course, still standing. A cavalcade of opinion makers long averred that Islamic State would thrive in Syria so long as Assad ruled because the Syrian Arab Army was part of the same disease.

John Bolton, former United Nations ambassador under George W. Bus…

Source for CNN's false story on Donald Trump, Jr. and Wikileaks?

James Freeman:
Is CNN Protecting Adam Schiff?

Journalists continue to air his fact-free allegations without requiring evidence. CNN wasn't the only media outlet that ran with the same fals story about the timing of a message to Trump.  It is reasonable to suspect someone like Schiff as disclosing this and suspicion would probably place another Democrat on the committeee with giving the false story.  It looks like CNN got sucked in by Shiff's continuing claim that he can't actually show them the evidence that he has seen. 

They would be wise to demand that he show them the actual documents in the future.

Is it any wonder that Trump is suspicious of the intel agencies?

Byron York:
Former top spy rethinks: Maybe we shouldn't have attacked a new president

...
"Let's put ourselves in Donald Trump's shoes," Morell said to Glasser. "So what does he see? Right? He sees a former director of CIA and a former director of NSA, Mike Hayden … criticizing him and his policies. Right? And he would rightfully have said, 'Huh, what's going on with the intelligence guys?'"

"And then he sees a former acting director and deputy director of CIA criticizing him and endorsing his opponent," Morell continued. "And then he gets his first intelligence briefing, after becoming the Republican nominee, and within 24 to 48 hours, there are leaks out of that that are critical of him and his then-national security adviser Mike Flynn."

"And so, this stuff starts to build, right? And he must have said to himself, 'What is it with these intelligence guys? Are they political?'"

The answer to that was sim…