Tag Archives: Justice Department

Without trial

It happens, and most often it is some American source that gives us the alleged goods. I state here alleged, because I am not now, not ever willing to take the media at their word, there have been too many events where the media goes free because someone whispered to them ‘as far as we can tell’, or ‘an anonymous sources close to the matter at hand told us’, the media hs had too many of these events. Yet when Reuters give us goods, it is time to take notice, mainly because Reuters does not go out on a limb that often. So when I became aware of ‘Why 4,998 died in U.S. jails without getting their day in court’ (at https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/usa-jails-deaths/), I woke up pretty quickly. 

Apart from the images, the article starts with “The U.S. government collects detailed data on who’s dying in which jails around the country – but won’t let anyone see it. So, Reuters conducted its own tally of fatalities in America’s biggest jails, pinpointing where suicide, botched healthcare and bad jail-keeping are claiming lives in a system with scant oversight”, I get why the US government wants to keep a lid on it, yet 5000 deaths is not something that goes unnoticed. So what is going on? The setting only gets worse when we see “Death rates have soared in those lockups, rising 35% over the decade ending last year. Casualties like Hill are typical: held on minor charges and dying without ever getting their day in court. At least two-thirds of the dead inmates identified by Reuters, 4,998 people, were never convicted of the charges on which they were being held”, as such we see an institution that has failed on several levels, 35% over a decade is quite the increase, when we look at lives lost, any percentage change that is a mere one digit is seen as disastrous, so how does this happen? I am asking because the institution that we can laughingly call the Human Rights branch of the UN, seems to have no problems going after Saudi Arabia, and when we are told “Capital punishment is a legal penalty in Saudi Arabia. The country performed at least 158 executions in 2015, at least 154 in 2016, at least 146 in 2017, at least 149 in 2018, with possibly 184 executed in 2019”, as such can someone explain why the UN has such loud trumpets on the 791 death, all whilst the US put 4998 to death without a trial. With the Saudi allegedly ending the lives of close to 15% of what the US might categorise at ‘Business as usual’, ‘the cost of doing business’ or even ‘workplace accidents’ (with the optional oops! At the end). Yet this is not about Saudi Arabia, it is to some degree about Reuters (the good part) and to a large extent about the United Nations (the bad part) where we heard an essay writer and French Human Rights expert and the Special Rapporteur for the UN how she shouted (debatable) events, she never gave us the 4998 inhumane endings of life, did she? So as Reuters treats us to “The U.S. Constitution grants inmates core rights, but those provisions are hard to enforce. The Fourteenth Amendment guarantees fair treatment to pre-trial detainees, but “fair” is open to interpretation by judges and juries. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel punishment forbids “deliberate indifference to serious medical needs of prisoners,” but proving deliberate negligence is difficult. The Sixth Amendment assures speedy trials, but does not define speedy”, we see the larger picture and we understand and get that some events cannot be anticipated, but 4998 losses that continue to go on is a much larger stage. It is optionally a stage where we see that the debts of the US are now the almost given guarantee to loss of life in the US, all whilst there is a larger stage where there is a chance that the largest percentage of these 4998 losses are not criminals, they are people caught in a bad setting and awaiting a chance to explain themselves. All this, in a stage where people in the US are calling Saudi Arabia bad, all whilst they are in a setting where they have killed 631% more people, all innocent people, you are innocent until proven guilty and these 4998 people never got their day in court, all whilst the 791 executed people, were proven to be guilty in a Saudi court of law.

So who represents the larger failure (apart from the UN who never acted, perhaps because their HQ is in New York). Yet Reuters is nowhere near done. When they give us “Many jails are not subject to any enforceable standards for their operation or the healthcare they provide. They typically get little if any oversight. And bail requirements trap poorer inmates in pre-trial detention for long periods. Meanwhile, inmate populations have grown sicker, more damaged by mental illness and plagued by addictions”, it is my personal view, yet a stage where we see “not subject to any enforceable standards”, a stage that merely escalates bad situations quickly towards what could be regarded as ‘worse nightmares’. There is however a small gem there too, but you will miss it when you read the article too quickly. The quote “Reuters was not able to identify the race of 9% of inmates who died”, you see this is a stage with a much larger frame of mind. In my personal opinion, this either sets the stage of a shoddy administration, or optionally a party wanted to make the identification of 9% of the cases close to impossible. There is the case of multi-racial stage, but to admit to such a failure gives rise to an inmate registration failure that should have been fixed well over two decades ago, as such I see a much larger stage, yet with the limited information available I cannot say which is the more accurate one.

The article is much larger and it has several sides that make this dynamite on several levels and to see this in Reuters and not in the Washington Post or the New York Times is a larger stage. So the last part I will look at is “The Justice Department has grown more secretive about the fatality data under the Trump administration. While BJS never has released jail-by-jail mortality figures, it traditionally has published aggregated statistics every two years or so. The 2016 report wasn’t issued until this year”, the stage has a few items that are debatable and optionally a larger stage that has issues all over the board. The lack in mortality figures is the largest and most visible one, you see, this stage was much larger in the 70’s and Robert Redford gave us the low down in the movie Brubaker in 1980, a movie that is a gem on several levels. So 40 years ago there was a clear stage where mortality rate was a visible issue (11 years after the fact), a large one and someone swiped that issue OFF the table. The movie was based on a fictionalised version of the 1969 book, Accomplices to the Crime: The Arkansas Prison Scandal by Tom Murton and Joe Hyams, detailing Murton’s uncovering of the 1967 prison scandal. The unsettling stage of something that came to light when he had the wardenship of the prison farms of Arkansas. 

It is when we consider this stage we see the largest failure in the US, a stage where side entries into society (criminals) are set to a stage off the board making them marginalised. There is one little issue, the 4998 people were innocent, they were never convicted, they never had their day in court and the system failed them close to 100%. And even if we give credibility to Michelle Deitch, she might be right on her turf, the setting of “these gaps make comprehensive nationwide statistics all the more important. “You can’t have good policy without good data,” she said. “Data tells us what is going right and what’s going wrong.””, the fact that racial info was missing in 9% of the cases give rise to a faltering system that has never properly overhauled, or the system is fault due to possibilities of data manipulation, that part is given a level of clarity when we realise that out of these cases the racial data of 450 people could not be ascertained. It is not a flaw or a data gap, it should be seen as a systemic failure. When a person is arrested, from the arrest (2 people) to local arrangements, to transport, to arrival into a jail, well over a dozen people missed it, and more important, they missed it 450 times. This is a systemic issue from day one and no one has rung the bell, at least not to the degree that this bell should have been rung. 

Well done Reuters!

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The Face of a book

So when we thought that the entire Cambridge Analytica was the tip of the iceberg, we were not kidding. The Washington Post (at https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2018/07/02/federal-investigators-broaden-focus-facebooks-role-sharing-data-with-cambridge-analytica-examining-statements-tech-giant) is giving us right now: “Representatives for the FBI, the SEC and the Federal Trade Commission have joined the Department of Justice in its inquiries about the two companies and the sharing of personal information of 71 million Americans“, that writing was always on the wall and it seems that it is pushing forward now, so even as Mark Zuckerberg thought that his day in court was done with a mere senate hearing, it seems that there is a much larger issue under the waterline and it is not merely data of a personal nature. The next parts that matters were: “Facebook discovered in 2015 that Cambridge Analytica, which later worked for the Trump campaign and other Republican candidates, had obtained Facebook data to create voter profiles. Yet Facebook didn’t disclose that information to the public until March, on the eve of the publication of news reports about the matter“, now this is nothing new but for some it is only now sinking in that the issue was known for two years. So when exactly did Facebook give us those goods? Two years of inaction, there are plenty of political players in the Democratic party who gotten results faster than that (which is saying a lot). So now we get to the first part, which is the SEC. The Securities and Exchange Commission will focus on “The questioning from federal investigators centres on what Facebook knew three years ago and why the company didn’t reveal it at the time to its users or investors”. You see, when a companies is valued on data, the setting that 20% of the details of the American people makes it into the public domain, that will impact a multi-billion value and that is now part of what could become a criminal investigation.

It is very likely that the SEC will focus primarily on TOPIC 8 – Non-GAAP Measures of Financial Performance, Liquidity, and Net Worth. Here we see:

8120.3 Measures of operating performance or statistical measures that fall outside the scope of the definition set forth above are not “non-GAAP financial measures”. Additionally, “non-GAAP financial measure” excludes financial information that does not have the effect of providing numerical measures that are different from the comparable GAAP measure.  Examples of measures that are not non-GAAP financial measures include:

  1. Operating and statistical measures (such as unit sales, number of employees, number of subscribers)
  2. Measures of profit or loss and total assets for each segment that are consistent with disclosures made in accordance with ASC Topic 280. (Non-GAAP C&DI Questions 104.01 through 104.06)

So, whilst we think it is merely data, the multi-billion dollar value of Facebook is data and they lost 20% of the Americans (and a chunk of Brits and Australians), so that reporting was not there for 3 years, and the SEC is slightly miffed on the subject.

And even as we see: “The Department of Justice and the other federal agencies declined to comment. The FTC in March disclosed that it was investigating Facebook over possible privacy violations” the setting that Justice is mulling over the impact and how to act (which is perfectly understandable), every person with their share of issues that can hide outstanding debts through ‘identity theft’ has optional paths to consider and the Justice department is not ready for the worst case scenario where 20% of all Americans filling for economic loss through identity theft, and the part where the financial systems on a flawed usage (authentication versus non-repudiation) now opens the optional flood gates, so the Justice department is taking everything very cautiously (whilst pussyfooting on a (path of commitment).

The next comment we see is: ““The fact that the Justice Department, the FBI, the SEC and the FTC are sitting down together does raise serious concerns,” said David Vladeck, former director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection and now a Georgetown Law professor. He said he had no direct knowledge of the investigation but said the combination of agencies involved “does raise all sorts of red flags.”“. It goes a little further than the settings we considered. Vox gives part of that setting (at https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/10/16/15657512/cambridge-analytica-facebook-alexander-nix-christopher-wylie) last year, yet the one part I missed here is that such systems require profiles to be made so that there is interaction. It can be done without is, but having the profiles makes it easier and better. The second source is Wired (at https://www.wired.com/story/cambridge-analytica-execs-caught-discussing-extortion-and-fake-news/) gives us “Britain’s Channel 4 News caught executives at Cambridge Analytica appear to say they could extort politicians, send women to entrap them, and help proliferate propaganda to help their clients“, as well as “They probed them on all manner of underhanded tactics, from deliberately spreading fake news to making up false identities. According to the video, the Cambridge executives took the bait” and there we have the reason why Justice is playing it slow. It is not merely about what was done, planned or enacted. Such profiles are complete enough to give rise or other uses as well, and if they have been used to acquire goods or services, we have ongoing settings towards corporate fraud. It will not matter whether they did, if anyone previously had access to those profiles, it could still fall on the lap of Cambridge Analytica. So, apart from finding those profiles (and there will be more likely than not way beyond a dozen), which profiles are they and how much interaction was used or given? With the honey trap we have an optional case of solicitation; we get identity fraud, optional Synthetic Identity Theft, all requiring investigation. The Justice Department will require time for that, not merely on whether things were done, but the likelihood of a conviction.

The final setting I gave is given weight with the quote: “Facebook also made Cambridge sign a legally binding agreement that it had deleted the data that year, but over the weekend, sources close to the company told WIRED that data was still visible to employees within Cambridge in early 2017“, which gives us that people had access and there is absolutely no evidence that no criminal acts were committed.

So we have two additional considerations. The first is can we work on the premise of guilty until proven innocent? In these cases of identity theft that is often the only path to take to shown innocence. The second is that there have been clear indications that the data was available to Russians, which now opens a path to organised crime as well. One source gives “A 2013 survey from Javelin Strategy and Research estimates that the annual total loss to Americans due to identity theft was roughly $20 billion“, now this is not merely criminal gains, also the cost that the crimes brought onto others is part of this, yet in that if there is even one link that gives us that Cambridge Analytica data was used, the bucket of consideration will become a lot messier for the Justice department and even more intense on scrutiny; that is one step as organised crime and compromised national security seem to be two sides of the same coin, there is a decade of evidence on that, so yes, this mess will become a whole lot less nice soon enough.

From the mere setting of organised crime as well as national security settings where people from all walks of life use Facebook and the setting that even those in denial had ‘blackmail’ in their operational minds, the cards that gone wide and available to a whole range of non-intentional people will be a growing farm of identities and connections.
This now gets us to last week’s issue of the Washington Examiner. The issue shown (at https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/facebook-dhs-fbi-help-russian-interference-future-elections-report) is not the one we need to focus on. You see with “Though Facebook has yet to find any serious interference in the current election cycle from the agencies guilty of social media meddling in 2016, the giant company was burnt just enough that year to warrant what amounted to a cry for help from the private tech sector to the government“, we aren’t actually supposed to look, the setting of ‘Facebook has yet to find any serious interference in the current election cycle‘ is the wrong one. The evidence that other sources had shown is that Facebook had not acted for well over two years on the Cambridge Analytica setting, in addition, the fact that more sources confirmed that staff members had access to the data to well into 2017 and most of that was kept quiet to all parties and shareholders, is a larger issue for the simple reason that there is optional evidence that Facebook wiped whatever data was against them from the data carriers. When Facebook was willing to keep people in the dark for three years and the setting that we get in addition to the Senate hearings implies that it is in the best interest of Facebook to get rid of bulk data settings on any election tampering. The mention of ‘bulk’ is actually intentional. You see, editing evidence is hard and in the end in a system as complex as the one Facebook has, people get found out. Wiping entire index settings and wiping complete profiles with all the connected usage is more efficient. A data dump that is lost can be regained with old backups (like a 2015 backup), editing the evidence will never ever work, not on a system as wide as the one Facebook has. So there is clearly the consideration that this has been happening, the two year silence, as well as the Bloomberg quote we can use in this content. With: “Christopher Ailman, chief investment officer of the California State Teachers’ Retirement System, said Wednesday that he deactivated his personal account due to the “offensive” lack of oversight and poor management at Facebook. CalSTRS has owned shares of the company since its initial public offering in 2012.” Now consider that all reference to ‘Christopher Ailman‘ seems to be gone, now consider the 100 profiles (speculated number) that was used to spike the Russian way of life to Americans. The moments that these profiles are gone, so is the rest, so as it is all wiped, the images the meme’s all go the way of the Dodo. Consider that some sources give 9% of profiles deleted in America (another source gave us 14% as a number), when it includes the fake ones, what are the chances that anything will be found? I am adding the dangers of intent here, because when a company like Facebook keeps quiet for well over 2 years that setting becomes very realistic.

So what other evidence has now been wiped? If the justice department wants a full log of all deletions together with interaction, engagement and images, how much could be retrieved? That becomes the question and even as we all signed up for it, we definitely did not agree to the slightest that it was to be used to turn us into tools.

so when we see ‘Facebook turns to Homeland Security, FBI for help‘ in the Washington Examiner, was that to actually seek help, or merely to see if the data was cleaned out (accidentally overwritten) as complete as possible?

Is it a given? No, it is not, yet the different sources from the US and UK newspapers should leave you with this thought, if not for the CNBC quote ‘Executives at Cambridge Analytica were caught on camera suggesting that the firm could use sex workers, bribes, ex-spies and fake news to help candidates win votes around the world‘, than for the mere realisation that Facebook cannot afford getting included in the setting that they were the tools for blackmail, fake mail and solicitation as empowering sides to any election, so the given side of ‘if it moves shoot it, if it doesn’t move shoot it to be certain‘ is a setting that also applies to data centres, although there we use the term ‘overwriting‘ which is a lot more efficient than merely deleting stuff.

I reckon that by the end of this year there will be a lot of limelight that includes executives of Facebook and a court of law, I have no idea if they can avoid it, but there you merely need to wonder if they should be allowed to avoid it, two years of silence nullifies and voids most of the goodwill they thought they created in the Senate hearing.

 

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As messages pass by

There has been a lot of throwing regarding e-mails in the 11th hour of the campaign. As elections are officially about to start, the need to get them out in favour of the Republican side seems to be clear. Yet, in all this there is an equal worry why the Democrats have let this get so out of hand.

For those who do not keep up to date with the daily need of any Clinton e-mail, let’s mull this over, so that the sequential parts will be a lot easier to understand. For the most, part of the history (at http://www.cnbc.com/2016/10/29/the-history-of-the-clinton-email-controversy.html) will give you part of the goods, but it is still a little short.

You see, this all goes back to 2012, when the Islamic militant group Ansar al-Sharia started a coordinated attack against two US government facilities in Benghazi, Libya. It resulted in the deaths of U.S. Ambassador to Libya J. Christopher Stevens and U.S. Foreign Service Information Management Officer Sean Smith. It was the New York Daily News that reported on State Department officials who were criticized for denying requests for additional security at the consulate prior to the attack. In her role as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton subsequently took responsibility for the security lapses. So, that should have been the end of it, should it not? The basic premise is that mistakes will happen, it is really not great when lives are lost, but it is a danger many foreign dignitaries in conflict places face.

Although, at this point, one valid question becomes debatable: ‘Should any elected official making such a lapse of security be regarded as a possible president of the United States?’

I am merely phrasing the question, it is not an answer pushing you into the direction of the Yes or No answer. What followed was a media rush towards the semantics of ‘Act of Terror‘ versus ‘Act of Terrorism‘. I am calling this an issue of semantics as in the end Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens ended up being equally dead, so in that regard there was no impact. Just as many have seen, but perhaps not realised that syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer claimed that a State Department e-mail, which passed along a report from Embassy Tripoli that Ansar al-Sharia had claimed responsibility for the attack on Facebook and Twitter was evidence that the White House knew of terrorist connections to the attack almost immediately. Charles Krauthammer stated, “This is really a journalistic scandal. I mean, the fact there was not a word about any of this in the New York Times or the Washington Post today.” This comes from the 23rd October 2012. The issue now is that there are layers of issues not dealt with. Consider this part and also consider the Senate Hearing Response by Hillary Clinton “With all due respect, the fact is, we had four dead Americans! Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night and decided they’d go kill some Americans?! What difference, at this point, does it make?!“, which is only part of the response, yet the response in the hours before the attack would have been important, especially as the movie linked to all this ‘Innocence of Muslims‘, a movie by an Egyptian born Coptic Christian, an anti-Islamic movie with the intent to denigrate Islam’s prophet, Muhammad. Was there really no clue that this would have repercussions? In addition, Anti-Islamic content had been added in post-production by dubbing, without the actors’ knowledge (source: Christian Science Monitor). What is interesting is that Sarah Abdurrahman states “If you watch closely, you can see that when the actors are reading parts of the script that do not contain Islam-specific language, the audio from the sound stage is used (the audio that was recorded as the actors were simultaneously being filmed). But anytime the actors are referring to something specific to the religion (the Prophet Muhammed, the Quran, etc.) the audio recorded during filming is replaced with a poorly executed post-production dub. And if you look EVEN closer, you can see that the actors’ mouths are saying something other than what the dub is saying.“, this is important because it clearly implies an attack on religious values, one that the Muslim community values above all others. Now we cannot expect that the internet is policed to a certain extent, yet in light of the trailer, was there really no one who asked ‘could this get out of hand?‘, whilst in the other direction, the fact that the trailer had been online for almost 50 days, were there no danger flags at all? So on a September 11th day, was there no perception at all that there could be a dangerous situation? In addition there was a PDF (at http://permanent.access.gpo.gov/gpo33519/Flashing%20Red-HSGAC%20Special%20Report%20final.pdf), where the Regional Security Officer in Libya compiled a list of 234 security incidents in Libya between June 2011 and July 2012, 50 of which took place in Benghazi.

  1. America and American interests were (regardless of reason) under direct terrorist attack.
  2. The State Department should have increased security on several levels
  3. It gives another view to the Senate hearing in light of certain facts (January 23rd 2013)
  4. The United States Senate Committee On Homeland Security And Governmental Affairs paper from December 2012 shows that additional security would have been essential.

Now, why is this so important during an election? For the most, we could call trivialise all this in regards to ‘administrative failure‘, which will happen, even as we all realise that lives were lost, it gives weight to the response that Hillary Clinton gave. As she stated “It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again” as well as “The Intelligence Community has a process, I understand, going with the other committees to explain how these talking points came out”, which now makes the second one a killer to say the least.

This is now part of the problem!

You see, the email controversy is not just that mails were missing, it became publicly known that Hillary Clinton, as she served as the United States Secretary of State, had used her family’s private email server for official communications, instead of the State Department email accounts maintained on federal servers. So certain triggers could have been missed and an issue of reporting now exists. In addition, the mere notion that thousands of emails that would later be marked classified by the State Department retroactively had been on other servers is also a clear case for response. This now gets us to Bill O’Reilly (at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dCYma3zZf7U), who now informs us on two sides that matter. At 2:11 we see the ‘accountability of people in power‘, which is an issue at any given day, yet there might be a clear explanation, yet the implied issues as seen gives us that there has been a level of miscommunication going all the way to the Oval Office, which is now a really big issue. In that regard, the Clinton campaign is getting cut all over the place, in addition, at 4:16, there is now the implied issue that FBI director James Comey was either not aware or covered up the private email issues as they were missing from the summation of the case.

Now, after all the grief that FBI director James Comey is now receiving. In addition, Nevada Democrat Senator Harry Reid gives us ‘James Comey may have broken law‘, is that so Harry? The trouble with Harry is that he doesn’t seem to mention on how private email servers and not the State.gov servers were used. Can we all agree that this might be the bigger issue, for more than one reason? The fact that impeachment could be due to all or any crime that abuses office powers, we could surmise that there is an optional case of perjury. If proven, we can avoid the entire election. That is not, as Harry Reid states ‘interference in an election‘, but the investigation of possible criminal acts. On one side, if this goes up after the elections and should Hillary Clinton win, than it is a first in history that both members of a family, both in a position of presidential powers gets impeached for ‘Perjury and obstruction of justice’, which is at his mere age of 76 still an interesting event to personally witness. Harry gets enthusiastic in his speech as given on the Huffington Post. You see he states “letting her GOP opponent get away with breaking the law“, which is interesting as the system does not seem to make a criminal ineligible for running for office. It mentions that you need to be an American and once elected you cannot run a second time for president (re-election does not apply), so a one term president cannot be a president again. When we look at the Constitution, Article 2, we get an interesting side. Section 4 gives us: “The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanours“, this implies that a felon can legally become president of the United States, practically that is a lot less certain.

So here we get the trouble with Harry. You see, until the election it is the premise of conviction, if Hillary Clinton gets prosecuted and convicted regarding the Benghazi mails after a successful election, she would be impeached. It is a possible and practical solution, but it isn’t likely and in addition initially James Comey made a notification of events. In light of the Washington Post (as well as the Guardian) we see “Their decision partly reflected the institutional power of the FBI director, Comey’s personality and the political realities they were facing, according to current and former Justice Officials. In this case, officials said Comey put the department in an untenable position by informing them that he was sending a letter to Congress because he had an obligation to lawmakers or they would feel misled“, is this separation of powers at its finest, or is this a mere loophole? We need to see this in contrast to another quote in the same article. Here we see: “At the July news conference, Comey announced that the FBI had completed its investigation of Clinton’s private email server while she was secretary of state. Comey said he was recommending to the Justice Department that Clinton not be charged, but he added that Clinton and her colleagues had been “extremely careless” in their handling of classified information.”” So it was after July that things escalated. The part that we see ‘when Harry met Hillary’ is that the path that is taken is odd to say the least. The mention by James Comey ‘in an unrelated case‘ as well as the fact that when this all happened Hillary Clinton should have had a cleaning pass on a very high level. That never happened, for the most it is an actual consideration exactly HOW Anthony Weiner got these mails to say the least. Consider that he left congress in June 2011, a little more than two months before it all happened. So how and exactly why was he kept in the loop? If the facts are correct, we are now facing a case where Hillary Clinton mailed classified materials to an outsider. A part that leads to even more questions when we see “FBI director James Comey revealed the existence of the emails, which law-enforcement sources said were linked to Weiner’s estranged wife, top Clinton aide Huma Abedin“, which now gets the Clintons in even more hot water. It came from a private server, it went to the top aide and she was using the laptop of resigned congressman Anthony Weiner, now it seems that the mails were meant for his wife, did she not have her own laptop (at http://www.cnbc.com/2016/10/30/fbi-obtains-warrant-for-newly-discovered-emails-in-clinton-probe–as-reid-accuses-comey-of-hatch-act-violation.html)?

From my view, the fact that classified materials went via unqualified sources to a device owned by a person who’s is no longer in office. It seems that Harry is spinning his way through legal mentions whilst ignoring transgressions of classified communications. So, Harry needs to be careful on whacking the paint brush around. In the end, there is of course a chance that it will influence the election, but we could in equal margins consider that the Clintons, due to careless ignoring mails in the field, the entire mess ended up hurting themselves again.

It is because the clarity of what actually happened is out there is missing, is exactly why this is now coming to blows now. As for the mention of ‘Reid Accuses Comey of Hatch Act Violation‘, we should in equal measure consider that this is not an act where we see ‘political activity’, this is an FBI director who is now looking into possible criminal negligence and the fact that classified materials were on a laptop not owned for the person who the intended mail was, in addition, it belonged to a person no longer in office, so those conditions could well spell more mess as former Hillary Clinton chief of staff Cheryl Mills and another top aide had “some” classified material on laptops they turned over to the bureau in its probe of Clinton’s private server use as secretary of state. Through her own statements, we saw that she was unaware what classified meant, she did not use the proper protocols on sending classified, secret and more than 20 top secret emails. So as we see Senator Harry Reid go all up in arms, we need to consider one additional quote from the Washington Post (at https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/comey-gives-in-to-shameful-partisanship/2016/10/30/c31c714a-9ed8-11e6-8d63-3e0a660f1f04_story.html). “The evidence suggests that FBI Director James B. Comey is a decent man. The evidence also suggests that he has been intimidated by pressure from Republicans in Congress whose interest is not in justice but in destroying Hillary Clinton“, that seems to be the driving force here. It is my personal belief that this is what happened and this is why the initial mail was so vague. If I resort to calling a spade a spade then I would state: “Yo Harry, we know that you are stupid, but you are not stupid. You know what I am saying?” Instead of lashing out to the Republicans in congress, instead of looking why the massive level of ignorance from a former Secretary of State wasn’t properly cleaned up the moment it was a clear visibility issue, we will get to the direct consequence of dropping the ball on the bottom of the 9th when you are down 4 points and this is the last play. It could cost you the game and that is exactly what could happen at this point. When you trace all this information back you get to the clear understanding that WikiLeaks doesn’t need to find whistle-blowers, with the cyber negligence we see at present, Congress could in theory be supplying WikiLeaks with Top Secret information for decades to come (dramatically over-sized speculation). Perhaps Congress could take a moment to send an unclassified email to Maj Gen William T. Lord (you know the dude in charge of the Air Force Cyber Units) requesting a highly needed presentation on ‘Common Cyber Sense‘, it seems that a sizeable population on Capitol Hill is in dire need of one. #JustSaying

 

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How to blame an inanimate object.

Something happened in Oregon. For many it will be horrific, to some it has no impact, to others it has an emotional impact. The news at CNN (at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yrYkblNgs_U) is all about the breaking news. For Umpqua Community College it will be a dark page in their history. The news is giving all levels of speculation, they are not doing it in an irresponsible way, because they are factors to be considered, but the news diverts on several occasions towards ‘other speculated’ events and dangers. It stopped being news after 20 seconds. It was all about (as I see it) on prolonging the event. Moving from breaking news snippet to breaking news snippet. We can argue on the value here, but there is no issue with that approach, it is a choice. In the case of John F. Kennedy Jr, when on July 16, 1999 his plane crashed into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts the issue was different. For 45 minutes we saw a sailor on the back of a deck. Nearly every newscast (CNN, Fox, CNBC et al) were all zooming in on that same sailor whilst I was at Dulles Airport waiting for my flight. Now that constitutes the pinnacle of bad newscasts, this is not, but there is an issue. You see, as emotions rise in that instance, we all were confronted with 10 dead, 20 wounded and the initial shooter has been apprehended. Something I could have stated in under a minute. Yet, it is not about this newscast, what happened afterwards becomes the issue. An interesting side is shown at EpicTimes.com by Jon Justice (at http://www.epictimes.com/jonjustice/2015/10/ucc-mass-shooting-blaming-the-gun-has-begun/).

This is not the first event and it will not be the last event either. The quote ‘Jon was frustrated to see so many people on social networks blame the NRA and call for more gun control‘ starts it of nicely. You see, guns do not kill people. People kill people. In addition we see the quote: “We need to get over this idea that you can put up a “Gun Free Zone” sign and it will stop the violence”, which is more than just bringing it to a point.

His podcast (also in the webpage) is emotional and seems to strike out to people trying to score political points towards gun at the expense of 13 cadavers. Yes, this sounds extremely crude, which it is. People ignore again and again that the gun culture is not the killing factor, the killing comes from criminals and monsters who seem to score names by going after children. Changes are needed and gun control has never and will never be the solution. You see, when guns fall away, we get blunt objects, knives and other devices that can end lives. Jon Justice starts to blame social media and 20 hours news a day. Jon Justice brings up a very interesting side. Social media and the option of notoriety is a growing concern, in all this guns are not even close to the largest dangers. Should we globally ban Facebook? In 2013 32,719 people died in a car accident. So, why is there no car control, you see nearly all the involved players had a driver’s license? Why are people not banned from cars FOR LIFE? In addition Jon brings up the discipline required for guns. Weirdly enough is that those who legally obtained a gun, some of these what people tend to call Gun Nuts, they tend to revere their gun. They take as many precautions towards gun safety and their weapon as a mother would towards their child. His speech takes a turn that people should observe. His consideration regarding 14 kills in Chicago, which has one of the strongest control laws. How many people spoke out in that regard? Those people taking a chance on political points thanks to the deceased from Umpqua Community College is appalling. Jon Justice clearly has a point.

Yet I started with the amendments. There was reasoning here. You see, the US constitution starts with the three amendments that safeguard liberties. To appease the anti-federalists personal freedoms were guaranteed in the Bill of Rights, whilst in addition limiting the government’s power. Yet, people forget that changing one is lowering the defence of all. I will go one step further, if the people lose the rights to bear arms, we should also change the first amendment where we state that the freedom of speech exists, yet after the editing the people can hold anyone liable for that what they print or speak. This should be great for Hollywood and their residents. Many people will rejoice that glamour press could be held accountable for their innuendo. They are connect because the first three rights were about the people. The first is: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances

You see, people seem to attack the second amendment, which was one of three set towards the safeguards of liberty.

The American second Amendment states: “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a Free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed“. This links to the Heritage guide to the Constitution (at http://www.heritage.org/constitution#!/amendments/1/essays/140/freedom-of-speech-and-of-the-press). The interesting quote is “The debates in the First Congress, which proposed the Bill of Rights, are brief and unilluminating. Early state constitutions generally included similar provisions, but there is no record of detailed debate about what those state provisions meant“, is that not interesting? Is the meaning and the debate regarding not one of the highest importance? The 1st Continental Congress in 1774 showed the following: “The last right we shall mention regards the freedom of the press. The importance of this consists, besides the advancement of truth, science, morality, and arts in general, in its diffusion of liberal sentiments on the administration of Government, its ready communication of thoughts between subjects, and its consequential promotion of union among them, whereby oppressive officers are shamed or intimidated into more honourable and just modes of conducting affairs” In this light, why do we not hold the press accountable? ‘The advancement of morality‘, is that not part that must be addressed? When we consider the Hacking scandal in the UK that involved the Murdoch Business, on June 3rd 2015 (at http://www.theage.com.au/comment/hacking-scandal-has-not-changed-murdoch-20150601-ghekss.html), we see the following two quotes: “New evidence … has led the Metropolitan Police to believe that this was unlikely to have been correct … the newspaper is unlikely to have been responsible for the deletion of a set of voicemails from the phone that caused her parents to have false hopes that she was alive“, which was regarding the deleted messages from Milly Dowler, which gave the parents the false hope that she was still alive. The next one was “I was taken aback when Davies told me, in a roomful of students and media buffs, that the premise of my question was wrong (and by implication, therefore, his story wasn’t). The Metropolitan Police, he said, had provided Lord Justice Leveson with a detailed report shortly after The Guardian’s correction was published. It showed there was a great deal of uncertainty about who had deleted what, and when. Naturally, Davies added, no one had reported this“, yet this remains linked to the issue that the press had been ignoring personal freedoms and blatantly hack the device of a person without consent. Yet in the end, the press did a double take on false ‘humility’ by promising to do better, an approach that was never met and blatant false allegations returned to be the norm less than 4 weeks after the end of the Leveson report considerations. So in all this, if people want control of something that is not to blame, in equal measure to ‘nurture’ a communion that seems to live on the needed premise of ‘Flight MH370 was crashed into the Indian Ocean in an apparent suicide mission‘, a statement that had no bearing as no evidence existed not at that point and no evidence existed a long time after that, even today 18 months later there still is no evidence of any kind that this was a suicide mission.

Marlin1881Now the second amendment: “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a Free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed“, this is the kicker! The fact that it is not infringed is nothing more than the ability to bear arms. Considered the image to the left.

 

Do you think that this is the weapon made by or owned by anyone who is about killing people? This is a work of art, plain and simple. The issue in Umpqua Community College is not plain and simple. The news gives us that the shooter was targeting Christians.

 

 

So is this person Chris Harper Mercer a mental health case or an anti-Christian extremist. You see, the speech from President Obama seems wrong on two counts. He stated ‘we do not have sufficient common sense gun safety laws‘, how wrong was he? You see, in the first case we can claim his speech should have been ‘Obamacare failed this young man, this young man who did not get the proper care and as a result people at Umpqua Community College paid for this failing with their life‘. In the other case the speech should have been ‘America is under attack, an extremist, under the guise of religious terminal segregation decided to attack Americans and the American way of life by killing future moulders of this great nation where freedom reigns‘. No, another speech was made and the gun, ‘the inanimate object’ got blamed.

The third one has no bearing on these events, yet this one is the last one that safeguards liberties in the US. The text: “No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law“, which basically gives a new view to the British expression ‘my home is my castle‘ in the US. The first is over protected, the second is shunned and prosecuted, and the third gets ignored. All facts that brought forth what was once the greatest nation on earth as well as the champion of freedom. That last part America seems to think it still is, yet when we consider the victims of Umpqua Community College. Was freedom of speech guaranteed so that one person could kill many (an act that was done not through voicing a thought or opinion) or has the right to free speech been taken away from the victims, who had a Christian and legal right to speak out regarding what they thought would be right in their lives and in their community? We will never know, because the dead do not talk.

How can we get past this?

First of all, the following part comes from the Seattle Times, which has an interesting side (at http://www.seattletimes.com/nation-world/roseburg-attack-latest-in-growing-list-of-horrific-killings/), it states: “Oregon is one of seven states, either from state legislation or court rulings, with provisions allowing the carrying of concealed weapons on public post-secondary campuses, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. The other states are Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Utah and Wisconsin.” So, there is a small side which does score points for President Obama, ‘common sense gun safety laws‘ is the issue in my view. You see, as I see it (oversimplifying issues as per usual), concealed weapons should not be allowed to anyone that is not part of the police, the military, governmental officials (members of the alphabet group) and cleared private security. It would not have made any difference today. But this fact should still be stated.

There is every option to stop the military from dropping the people who stood by them and let those getting close to retirement to become part of an education location security team, a group of people that is armed and is there to keep the students safe. They remain semi-military staff and are as such accountable for events, but I feel certain that whatever person, for whatever reason thinks that he will become famous, that person is a lot more likely to be the diminished towards a mere by-line ‘today an individual entered a campus armed with concealed weapons. Military protection was on site and none of the students became victim of this attack. The carcass of the transgressor will be disposed of shortly; his identity no longer matters‘. How long until these people regard a school not to be a target? How long until we acknowledge that anyone with a mental condition should not be allowed a firearm license? Will that stop the transgressor? No, that is extremely unlikely, but the presence of trained personnel on educational grounds will make it extremely certain that the loss of innocent victims will remain as low as possible. Consider the Columbine Massacre. April 20, 1999 from 11:19 a.m. until 12:08 p.m. An event where for almost an hour two people had access to a ‘shooting gallery’ causing the death of 12 people and wounding 21. Now consider another event. On 15 April 1912 a British Dinghy was lost at sea. It was called the Titanic (you may have heard of it). In 1914 the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) became in effect, a convention that is still in effect today. So, if sailors can get something this lasting done, how come that proper security in US schools is still not achieved 186 months after Columbine? The combined wars of the American Revolutionary War and the Northwest Indian War took less time to settle. The two costed the lives of 8044 in battle, since 1980 it is rumoured that only 297 people were killed, so perhaps if we get a few more casualties (like 8044 minus 297) things will actually change, as long as those pushing for change realise that blaming guns and trying to force gun control will never ever be a solution. The Titanic lost 1500 lives a number that outside a war would never have been fathomable in those days, so perhaps more deaths will push the American administration into action. I am however reluctant to consider that they show any wisdom in that regard. Guns and politicians react like a bull and a bright coloured blanket, with no option for any amount of fence. What people might forget is that the US military is cutting 40,000 troops (not of their own accord I imagine). Many of those now need to find jobs, which means that new pressures are about to hit the US job market, did no one consider the fact that many of these are exquisitely trained in keeping people safe? Is it such a jump to enlist these people within the Justice department as educational security (to avoid issues with the 1978 Posse Comitatus Act)?

In the end there is a case to be made that 40,000 departures are arranged because the US is so broke that it has exhausted all options and hiring these people in other capacities is no longer an option. Which is the consideration one gets at minus 18 trillion, so how has this administration as well as the previous Republican one done anything to keep places of education truly safe?

I’ll let you ponder these facts, but when you do, consider the words of Bill O’Reilly (at http://video.foxnews.com/v/4524976308001/the-mass-murder-in-oregon-/?intcmp=hpvid1#sp=show-clips), the fact that again there is a link to social media and the fact that the ‘claim’ was placed before the event took place. In my personal view an anti-Christian extremist would not have given ‘warning’, making this a ‘some form of mental health case’. There are unknowns and there are speculations. The statement that people were killed based on religion was made by someone who was in the classroom where it happened seems to be acceptable enough as quality reporters have gone with that fact.

So where is any solution to be found? Gun control will not lead to any solution (in the US) and amending the laws and regulations are equally pointless against transgressors like this.

 

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Diplomatic Disbelief

Even though the economy is about to take a weird leap, which will be discussed in the next blog, the events as they unfolded on last night’s news by the NOS is taking a weird step to say the least.

So, on Tuesday evening, the NOS decided to release information on events that happened last Saturday. Now, these things happen. Whether it is just average news, or embargoed news, the fact that diplomatic grounds were transgressed upon, whilst as far as it seems with an utter lack of viable reasons is something that seldom happens. It might actually be a Dutch first, but there it is, the Dutch police thought it was to some level a good idea to enter the premises of a member of the Russian Diplomatic Corps.

Since when is that not major news?

So let us go over the facts for as much as we can.

As the NOS reported, on Saturday the Russian diplomat Dmitry Borodin was arrested in his apartment. This was due to neighbour complaints about the safety and danger to his children.

So, here

  • First, diplomatic grounds were violated.
  • Second, the diplomat was taken away, even though, according to his statement, he pointed out his diplomatic immunity.

Subtotal: this fiasco at this point involved the Dutch home office and the Dutch foreign office.

There are additional issues with the Vienna Convention on Relations and Optional Protocol on Disputes, but about that part later.

So let’s look at the time line.

This happened on Saturday evening, which means that the police commissioner should have received a phone call that scared him to death before midnight. He then wakes up the Dutch ministers Ronald Plasterk (Home office), Frans Timmermans (Foreign Office) and Ivo Opstelten (Justice). The simple reason is that when you miscommunicate from the top, you want that list to remain as short as possible. At that point, the arresting officers will get the picture that it will be a long weekend for them, as they get grilled and checked on every piece of paper they create.

The Russian side was simple; the man was released after three hours.

So at this point, it is Sunday, it is way too soon for lunch. Those four individuals are (or should be) earning their pay. However, did this happen? It seems not, as Kysia Hekster, NOS reporter investigates her story, I see none of these matters. The fact, that after the trivial matters that the NOS reported on Sunday and Monday and, this Tuesday story smells like Hamlet, (a foul stench that is coming from the news).

Important to realise that in the first, we do not know whether the policemen were morally wrong, they were definitely legally wrong to enter diplomatic premises. I wonder what their side is on all this, as I would want to hear this. The fact that Sky News did not seem to have picked this up and the Guardian picked it up only after the Netherlands did seems to indicate that several levels of embargo in place.

I have to admit that several facts do not add up. For one that only after arrival at the police station people learned that this was a diplomat. The fact that the address did not raise flags is an issue on several levels. You see, partially I am all for a new cold war. However, it would be nice if we start being clever about it on how we start this and not give away the cheese on these levels of ‘silliness’. The statement by Annemieke Vermeer-Kunzki is acceptable. She stated that ‘the Dutch are likely wrong’. She is holding out for space as she might not have all the facts. There are of course issues if the children were clearly in danger. I am not claiming that fact to be true or false, I just do not have viable data on that claim.

What is, however really clear, is that this circus, which started on Saturday, is only now getting into the visible light of newscasting. So interesting to see how this evolves, especially as news agencies, who are always claiming ‘the people have a right to know‘ seem to remain to be in the dark on these events? I reckon that at present it sucks to be a minister (one of the three mentioned that is).

There are more considerations. No matter how right or how wrong, President Putin will not take kindly to this. The Russian Diplomatic Corps is his shiny horse and officials messing with this will get the wrong side of the lime light. It will be interesting to see what Director Bartholee of the AIVD (Dutch version of MI-5) will do. No matter how morally right the policemen might have been, they might be in hot waters in more than one way. The response on NOS news by Foreign office minister Timmermans is also out of bounds (to some extent). It is nice to ‘await the report‘, however when this information is released three days after the event, then it is time to ask questions in these matters, especially with such an international event. In addition, the NOS was really not that active in asking the ministers involved the questions that needed to be asked, especially when most of the ‘news’ is about budget meetings that are not moving forward (about that part more in my next blog).

We will see this unfold, yet the lack of visibility whilst CNN reports on a couple who survives a near-fatal hike, how BBC world release information on 4 Spanish members released in Mexico. It seems to me that there was nothing on this event on any of those stations. Even Sky News seemed to have nothing, just that a ‘New Dreamliner is on its way‘. In a time when our privacies seem to be blowing in the wind, as we see a headline like ‘Regulation will be imposed on press as politicians reject self-regulation’, where the quote “Tom Harris, a former minister, warns on Wednesday that his party is undermining freedom.” and at the same time, those Journalists do not act on a story of diplomatic trespass gives more than one indication that the PRESS seems to have lost view on the things that should matter.

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