July 31, 2017

From the Sacbee

House Republicans are intensifying their effort to have the Justice Department investigate Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign, as they’re seeking the same sort of special counsel probe President Donald Trump’s campaign is now enduring.

House Judiciary Committee Republicans detailed in a seven page letter to Justice a request for a special counsel to investigate “actions taken” by Clinton, former FBI Director James Comey and former Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

Earlier this week, committee Republicans agreed to seek documents related to Comey’s investigation of Clinton’s private email server while secretary of state.

Et tu, John Kelly?

July 31, 2017

As Donald Trump tries to move Attorney General Jeff Sessions into the now vacant position of Homeland Security chief to kill the Russia investigation, his aides claim John Kelly will install a clear chain of command in the White House.

From The Guardian

Donald Trump’s new chief of staff, Gen John Kelly, will instil discipline and a clear chain of command in the White House, senior staffers have claimed.

After a disastrous week of legislative failure and poisonous infighting culminated in the removal of chief of staff Reince Priebus and his replacement with the retired US Marine Corps general who has been leading the Department of Homeland Security, Trump’s adviser Kellyanne Conway said she was getting ready to obey orders.

“I will do whatever the president and our new chief ask me to do,” Conway told Fox News Sunday. “I’m always a protocol and pecking order kind of gal.”

A key test will be if John Kelly gets a grip on Jared Kushner, who appears to be the real power behind Trump’s throne, taking instructions.

The signs are ominous. Kelly defended Kushner for seeking a back channel to Russia outside of US government surveillance even though Trump had just been elected on an overwhelming mandate to improve relations with Russia, making secrecy unnecessary.

Tsipras’ new slogan “the worst is behind us” fails to persuade real world Greeks

July 31, 2017

From The Guardian

“The worst is clearly behind us.” Panaghiota Mourtidou pondered the words with a gravity unusual for the jovial volunteer. Even now, several days after the Greek prime minister, Alexis Tsipras, saw fit to use the phrase, she still feels somewhat bewildered. “Politicians clearly have no idea of the reality on the ground,” she said. “If they did, they wouldn’t make such pronouncements because, really, it couldn’t be worse.”

Wisconsin company plans to implant micro chips in its employees

July 29, 2017

From Circa

Many companies use electronic ID cards as a security measure to make sure only employees have access to get into the office. Well, soon, employees at one Wisconsin-based company won’t need an ID because they will have microchips.

To many it may sound invasive, but come Aug. 1, Three Square Market (32M) will become the first company in the U.S. to offer implanted microchip (RFID chip) technology to all of its employees.

The company, which develops software used in vending machines, said in a press release that the microchips will allow employees to make purchases in the break room, open doors, log in to computers and use the copy machine.

US Air Force looking for Russian RNA samples

July 29, 2017

The US Air Force is looking to acquire samples of ribonucleic acid (RNA) and synovial fluid from Russians, according to a government website used to place tenders. The reason behind the order hasn’t been specified.

The Air Force’s Air Education and Training Command has placed a listing on the Federal Business Opportunities website asking for at least 12 RNA samples from Russian people of a European ancestry, as well as 27 samples of synovial fluid.

The US has been somewhat asleep at the wheel when it comes to biological warfare.

Readers will know the chain of clues which has led me to believe the Russkies and Goldman Sachs may have hoped to take advantage of this to gap by putting into the Oval office Trojan Horse Donald Trump.

Anyway, I hope the Russians get sensible and realize its time to stand down before we have a catastrophic biological warfare outbreak…

Grappling with “Twisters”

July 29, 2017

Gone are the days when we had to go to news sites to keep up with current affairs, theatres to get a drama fix and the movies to see James Bond spy thrillers.

Under The Don, the genres have merged into one seamless flow, saving us a lot of time.

Trump’s tweets in real time, the FBI Russia probe and mobster antics seem to have created some kind of block buster new genre,  which, for want of another word, could just as well be called the “Twisters”.

It is fascinating, baffling, funny, surreal, horrifying by turns, but always unpredictable. There are elements of unravelling, political, economic and mental, of dramatic collision and epic conflicts as this “tornado” of events hurtles all over DC, impacting far beyond the USA.

In a sign there really is new quasi entertainment, quasi political “art” form emerging, the Wash Po has assigned its blogger on pop culture the job of giving an in depth analysis of the incredibly fast paced, yes, roller coaster, political developments.

Her latest piece on Trump’s twitter tirade to force out Jeff Sessions must have gone to press yesterday – just before Trump actually fired Reince Priebus on Twitter.

Readers will know I have fingered the Trump clan, Kissinger, Kislyak and Kushner as the real villains. Surfing on a wave of American patriotism, they took the White House. Only to engage in back stabbing worthy of Stalin and purge as many of the patriots who had supported them as they could on November 9th.

Now that the FBI investigation looks set to confirm the Trump clan have launched a cash for favours scam, partnering with kleptocratic Russian oligarchs, Putin, and Goldman Sachs, to install some kind of nepotistic dictatorship or imperial family (the “fobsters”? a cross between fools and mobsters) with the object of loot the USA, Trump is desperately trying to purge the remaining American patriots. One of the last remaining, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, sensibly is refusing to quit, and allow Trump to get away with his crimes.

But I am off my “Twisters”. Priebus (fired apparently because his repertoire of dirty tricks was not enough to stop FBI’s Russia investigation, which has now caught Don Jr in its headlights) is to be replaced by  no lesser man than retired Marine General John Kelly.

Now, that is one heck of a Twister. Is there anyone who can predict how that is going to work out? Kelly recently criticized Russian election interference. So, it will be interesting to see how a four star Marine General will  behave as the new Chief of Staff of a Ruskie Oval office.

A leading Democrat member of the Senate Intelligence Committee said Kelly could “impose some order on the increasingly anarchic White House.”

“If a general can’t to it, I don’t know who can,” he sighed.

Stay tuned to find out if Kelly gets to grips with The Twister or ends up being swept aside in its whirling currents.

Hopeful is that Kelly is a confidante of James Mattis, who has been level headed antidote to Trump’s and H R McMaster’s Blofeld style warmongering in a golf course over chocolate cake.

Also, both men have experience of physical world twisters in the form of the sudden, chaotic and impenetrable sand storms that plague the Iraqi deserts.

As if that were not enough action for one evening, well, the wife of the new communications director is reported to have filed for divorce. This, as it emerged that Anthony Scaramucci could be looking for ideas to spice up his colourful prose to a gay porn star he follows on twitter.

CNN has wisely stopped even trying to do an analysis of what Scaramucci, nicknamed the Mooch and Scarface, says during interviews, choosing instead to just offer us some of the most “eye popping quotes” from the new kid on the block.

Tune in to the next episode of Twisters by following Trump in real time on Twitter. He has just launched a tirade to get the Senate majority changed to 51, opening the USA to potentially years of instability.

Mueller probe to look at secretive real estate Trump deals since election day. Front for bribes?

July 28, 2017

From USA Today

Since Election Day, President Trump’s businesses have sold at least 30 luxury condos and oceanfront lots for about $33 million. That includes millions of dollars in properties to secretive shell companies, which can hide the identities of buyers or partners involved in the deals, a USA TODAY investigation has found.

Now, details of some of those deals and other transactions by Trump’s family business could be unmasked as special counsel Robert Mueller expands his inquiry into election-meddling by Russia and whether Trump’s campaign colluded.

Federal investigators are expected to delve into records revealing some of the President’s most closely guarded secrets, including how much money he makes, who he does business with and how reliant he is on wealthy, politically-connected foreigners.

It could also pierce the increasing secrecy around who is buying real estate from Trump. A USA TODAY investigation last month revealed that 70% of Trump real estate sales since he won the GOP nomination were to secretive shell companies, compared to 4% in the two years before that. The clear shift to those kinds of purchases, which help obscure the identities of the buyers, raise questions about the source of profits that ultimately flow to the President because he has not fully divested from his companies.