Sunday, August 20, 2017

Republican senator says Trump's Charlottesville response compromises Trump's ability to lead

Business Insider         MAXWELL TANI         August  20th 2017
 Republican Sen. Tim Scott continued to condemn President Donald Trump's defense of some protesters at a neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia last week.
In an interview on CBS' "Face The Nation" on Sunday, Scott explained his argument that Trump's response to Charlottesville "complicates his moral authority" to lead the nation by equating neo-Nazis with counter-protesters.

"It's going to be very difficult for this president to lead if, in fact, that moral authority remains compromised," Scott said.

He added: "His comments on Tuesday that erased his positive comments on Monday started to compromise that moral authority that we need the president to have for this nation to be the beacon of light to all mankind."

Scott urged Trump to try and forge deeper connections with black communities, saying the president needs to "have a personal connection to the painful history of racism and bigotry of this country."

"It would be fantastic if he sat down with a group of folks who have endured the pain of the '60s, the humiliation of the '50s and the '60s," Scott said.

"This would be an opportunity for him to become better educated and acquainted with the living history of so many folks — from John Lewis to my mother and so many others who have gone through a very painful part of the history of this country — so that when he acts, when he responds, and when he speaks, he's not reading the words that are so positive that he's breathing the very air that brings him to a different conclusion."

The South Carolina senator has repeatedly criticized Trump's Charlottesville response.

Scott said earlier this week that Trump's bungled Charlottesville response could also weaken the GOP legislative drive in congress as Republicans hope to pass major tax reform and infrastructure bills and raise the debt ceiling.

"When there is confusion where there should be clarity, it emboldens those folks on the other side," Scott told Vice News on Thursday. "It does not encourage the team to work as hard as we should on those priorities because there is so much headwind that you can't see straight."

Sen Scott: As we look to the future it’s going to be very difficult for this POTUS to lead if in fact moral authority remains compromise

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Steve Bannon’s exit prompts backlash from core Trump backers

NBC news           BENJY SARLIN      August  19th 2017 
WASHINGTON — Steve Bannon’s exit from the White House drew an immediate backlash from his allies in the party’s populist wing, who fear their agenda is becoming sidelined within the Trump administration.

“I don’t have any longer the expectations that Trump even can keep the rest of his promises," Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, told NBC News on Friday after the announcement that the chief strategist would be leaving the administration.

The uproar threatens to divide Trump’s supporters during the most difficult stretch of his presidency yet and before a critical legislative push next month in which Congress must raise the debt ceiling, pass a budget, and make headway on tax reform.

Trump has faced withering criticism in recent days, including from members of his own party, over his response to the violence at last weekend's white nationalist demonstrations in Charlottesville, Virginia, and his defense of "very fine people" who marched with neo-Nazis there.

Trump thanked Bannon early Saturday in a tweet, saying: "He came to the campaign during my run against Crooked Hillary Clinton - it was great!"

King, whose hardline immigration stance made him a popular figure at Breitbart News, which Bannon ran before joining Trump's campaign, said the White House was being taken over by “northeasterners” instead of ideological conservatives, which "really hurts the long-term strategy of the Trump administration.”

Breitbart announced late Friday afternoon that Bannon had rejoined the news site as executive chairman.

In an MSNBC appearance on Friday, Pollak said Trump had so far satisfied his base’s concerns, but warned "if he veers away, if he pulls an Arnold Schwarzenegger and tries to reinvent himself as liberal, he will see that support erode very, very quickly."

While Breitbart was a critical early supporter of the president’s political rise, running interviews and favorable articles even before he announced his candidacy, their backing has not been absolute and their coverage has taken a special interest in Trump’s staffing decisions.

When Trump feuded with Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a popular figure among immigration restrictionists, the site pushed back with stories declaring that he “embodies the movement” Trump led and that his exit would “endanger the administration.”

More recently, Breitbart portrayed Bannon’s shaky status as part of a war for control of the White House between “economic nationalists,” the web site's favored side, and “globalists” like chief economic adviser Gary Cohn, National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and Deputy National Security Adviser Dina Powell, all of whom featured prominently in the site's coverage.

Breitbart White House reporter Charlie Spiering’s reporting straightforwardly referred to the trio as “Bannon’s enemies in the White House” and the coverage has portrayed Cohn as too close to the financial world (he’s a former Goldman Sachs executive) and McMaster as overly hawkish on Afghanistan and weak on Islamic terror groups.

Trump weighed in on both McMaster and Bannon during the conflict, saying that McMaster was “a good man, very pro-Israel” in a statement earlier this month and telling reporters on Tuesday that Bannon was “a good man” and “not a racist” while hinting at his possible departure.

The anti-McMaster chatter grew loud enough to draw in figures like Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who decried a “disgraceful” campaign against him by the “alt right” in a statement this week. "Such smear tactics should not be tolerated and deserve an emphatic response," he said.

The Wall Street Journal’s editorial page also backed McMaster, drawing corresponding coverage in Breitbart with headlines like “Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal Tries to Take Over Trump White House for McMaster, Globalists.”

The tensions only escalated when Bannon called a reporter at the liberal publication The American Prospect and undercut the administration’s tough talk on North Korea’s nuclear program, saying “there’s no military solution” with acceptable losses and that “they got us.”

On the the other end of the political spectrum, Bannon’s ouster could be a small step toward easing tensions with elected Republicans upset over Trump’s Charlottesville response and who had previously expressed concerns about Bannon’s role.

Bannon, who once called Breitbart "the platform for the alt-right," had long been decried by anti-hate groups over his site's coverage, which included a tag for stories on "black crime" and ran op-ed articles by far right European politicians. In the days leading up to his exit, Reps. Pete King, R-N.Y., and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., had both explicitly called for his firing.

“Those who relish culture wars & celebrate political polarization have no place leading a country in profound need of healing & unity,” Congressman Carlos Curbelo, R-Fla., tweeted in response to the news.

CORRECTION (Aug. 18, 6:31 p.m.): A previous version of this article misstated the title of Joel Pollack at Breitbart News. He is senior editor-at-large, not editor-in-chief.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

The Roving Reporter :Trump repeats debunked terrorist torture anecdote about Gen. Pershing in apparent response to Barcelona attack

 US News    PAUL D. SHINKMAN      August 17th 2017 
President Donald Trump on Thursday followed a conciliatory tweet to the government of Spain in the wake of an attack in Barcelona with a second post reiterating a widely a roundly  debunked story of how Army Gen. John J. Pershing supposedly quelled an Islamic insurgency while serving in the Philippines in the early 20th century.

"Study what General Pershing of the United States did to terrorists when caught. There was no more Radical Islamic Terror for 35 years!" Trump wrote, shortly after his tweet condemning the terrorist attack in Barcelona and offering the Spanish government "whatever is necessary to help."

STrump's tweet about Pershing appears to advocate unforgiving treatment of terrorists to deter future attacks, and comes as the president faces broad criticism for his public statements equating the activities of neo-Nazis and white nationalists in Charlottesville, Virginia, last weekend with the actions of those protesting against them.

Spanish officials were still investigating Thursday's attack at the time of Trump's tweets and had not released any information publicly about suspects or known perpetrators. The Islamic State group did, hours later, claim responsibility for the attack, though Trump's immediate connection to Islamic extremists – and his promotion of the long-debunked story about Pershing – appears to contradict his remarks from earlier in the week.

"Before I make a statement, I need the facts. So I don't want to rush into a statement," Trump said at a press conference on Tuesday, explaining his delayed response to issue a statement condemning the violence in Charlottesville. "Unlike the media, before I make a statement, I like to know the facts."

Trump first referenced a story about Pershing during a political rally in February 2016, when he told a crowd in North Charleston, South Carolina, that Pershing "took 50 bullets, and he dipped them in pigs' blood" before using them to shoot 49 Muslim rebels.

Some Muslims believe that eating pork is forbidden and would prevent entrance into heaven, though many interpretations conclude it is not a sin to unknowingly or unwillingly do so.

The Roving Reporter

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Fox News host Eboni K. Williams slams Trump for reaping 'benefits of racism'

 The Grio
August 15th 2017      Eboni K. Williams, co-host of The Fox News Specialists, had strong words for the President of the United States in the wake of the violence this weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia.

During her segment, Williams called Donald Trump out for his initial tepid response to the situation in which he condemned anger and hatred on "many sides." Williams said that his failure to immediately call out white supremacy was "cowardly and dangerous."

"I was willing to give you the benefit of the doubt," Williams said on the show. "I can no longer do that, Mr. President. No more benefit ― all doubt."

"In a moment where you could have been crystal clear where you stand on the issue of inclusion, standing up against white supremacy and domestic terrorism, you very intentionally chose to be ambiguous and equivocate."

Eboni K. Williams, co-host of The Fox News Specialists, had strong words for the President of the United States in the wake of the violence this weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia.

During her segment, Williams called Donald Trump out for his initial tepid response to the situation in which he condemned anger and hatred on "many sides." Williams said that his failure to immediately call out white supremacy was "cowardly and dangerous."

"I was willing to give you the benefit of the doubt," Williams said on the show. "I can no longer do that, Mr. President. No more benefit ― all doubt."

"In a moment where you could have been crystal clear where you stand on the issue of inclusion, standing up against white supremacy and domestic terrorism, you very intentionally chose to be ambiguous and equivocate."

Trump has faced criticism from both sides of the political aisle because of his initially tepid response to the violence in Charlottesville. He eventually did speak out to condemn white supremacists, specifically the KKK and neo-Nazis, but Williams said the gesture was too late, and not nearly enough to make up for his original response.

"President Trump, I do not know your heart, but what I do know for sure is that you've clearly done the math," Williams said. "You've decided that the portion of your base that is absolutely racist is so significant, so valuable that you hesitate ― even in the face of blatant, flagrant hatred ― to risk turning them off and thereby crippling your political stronghold."

"You remember when you said your base would stick with you even if you shot someone on Fifth Avenue? I think you are right. I think they will stick with you through anything. ... They will even stick with you while you calm their fears and deep-seated anger around their perceived depreciation of the intrinsic value of whiteness in this country. Let's be honest: That's what this is all really about," she added.

She added that it was possible Trump was not "personally" a racist but that he was "all too happy to reap the benefits" of the support he has among racists.

She ended her impassioned speech with a "personal plea" to Trump:

"You are uniquely positioned to forcefully call out evil, anti-American domestic terrorists. We certainly cannot change what we fail to acknowledge. I am asking you to address their anger, their misplaced fears. Let them know this is America, land of opportunity, and there is indeed enough to go around."

Monday, August 14, 2017

Merck CEO quits Trump's manufacturing council over Charlottesville — and Trump immediately bashes him

Business Insider         LYDIA RAMSEY           August 14th , 2017
Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier is resigning from President Donald Trump's manufacturing council.

"America's leaders must honor our fundamental values by clearly rejecting expressions of hatred, bigotry and group supremacy, which run counter to the American ideal that all people are created equal," Frazier said in a statement.

"As CEO of Merck and as a matter of personal conscience, I feel a responsibility to take a stand against intolerance and extremism."

Frazier is one of the few black CEOs of a major US corporation. He was the only black member of Trump's manufacturing council.

The resignation came after a weekend of violence at a white nationalist and neo-Nazi protest in Charlottesville, Virginia, in which the president did not explicitly condemn the actions of white supremacists.
Trump almost immediately fired back at Frazier, turning the conversation toward .

Merck, a New Jersey-based pharmaceutical giant, is a known for making Gardasil, the vaccine designed to protect against the sexually transmitted infection HPV, as well as the drug credited with helping former President Jimmy Carter get cancer-free.

Frazier had served on the president's American Manufacturing Council along with fellow pharmaceutical CEO Alex Gorsky of Johnson & Johnson.

Lets hear from Witchy .

Every damn day!
Every damn week!
Every damn month!
This President manages to screw something up!
Too bad for our country!

I don't know why ALL of them have not resigned yet.  From all indications,  the sole purpose of that "council"  is to brief the so-called president on what those corporations are doing,  and then the so-called president takes credit for the work that they have been doing,  and tweets about it.  Ford was the last corporation that wised up and called him out on it.  They should all WAKE UP!!!!

Trump cannot be shamed.  He has no morals only greed and power.   sad. weak.   Trump also cannot tolerate any dissent or criticism  much like babies and dictators.  
The so called President, is a very sick ego-maniac.  Mr. Merck shows a lot of class,  Trump too has a lot of class, all low!!

Mr. Frazier is, indeed, a class act, unlike a certain President.  Being CEO of a major pharma company requires numerous balancing act as our laws governing medications both over-the counter and prescription, are complex and the pricing of such is a very mixed bag.  Trump is little more than a national disgrace and would do everyone a huge favor by resigning, today.  Pence might not be much better, but at least he is rational.


Saturday, August 12, 2017

Southern Collard Greens --- Nee's Fried Cchicken

 A big pot of classic bacon-flavored, ham hock-essenced collard greens is the perfect thing to serve at your family dinner or summer cookout. It's our favorite at any time! 

3 (1-lb.) packages fresh collard greens 
 12 smoked bacon slices, 
chopped 2 medium-size yellow onions
 chopped 3 garlic cloves
,minced 3 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar 2 tablespoons honey  
1 (12- to 16-oz.) smoked ham hock
 Kosher salt 
Freshly ground black pepper

Remove and chop collard stems. Chop collard leaves. Cook bacon in a large Dutch oven over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 12 to 15 minutes or until almost crisp. Add onion, and sauté 8 minutes or until onion is tender. Add garlic, and sauté 1 minute. Stir in chicken broth and next 2 ingredients; add ham hock. Increase heat to high, and bring to a boil. Add collards in batches. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and cook 2 hours or to desired tenderness. Remove meat from ham hock; chop meat, and discard bone. Stir chopped meat into collards. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.

Nee's  Fried Chicken
You won't ever go back to any fast-food, bucket-style chicken again—ever. This crispy goodness is the real deal and perfect for the summer. 

1 (3- to 4-pound) whole chicken, cut into pieces 
1 teaspoon salt 
1 teaspoon pepper 
2 cups buttermilk 
Self-rising flour 
Vegetable oil

 1  .Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Place chicken in a shallow dish or zip-top plastic bag, and add buttermilk. Cover or seal, and chill at least 2 hours.

2..Remove chicken from buttermilk, discarding buttermilk. Dredge chicken in flour.
Heart healthy

Trump's longtime doctor offers an explanation for what's going on with his hair

Business Insider     DENNIS GREEN
Trump's longtime doctor, Harold N. Bornstein, revealed some surprising facts about the president's health in a series of interviews with The New York Times.

He even shed some light on the president's hair. According to Bornstein, Trump takes a drug for the prevention of hair loss, called finasteride (marketed as Propecia).

"He has all his hair," Bornstein told the Times.

Finasteride was originally prescribed to treat enlarged prostates in men, before it was discovered that a side effect of the drug was an observed reduction of male pattern baldness.

It is now prescribed by dermatologists to treat male pattern baldness, and is one of only four treatments that can be used to combat the condition.

This is only one piece of the puzzle when trying to understand the structure of Trump's hair, however. Hair surgeon Dr. William Yates has said that it's likely Trump's look can be attributed to an early version of hair transplant surgery, or an expensive weave.

According to Bornstein, Trump also takes a medication for rosacea, as well as one for elevated cholesterol and lipids.

The White House did not comment on the information or confirm with The New York Times that Bornstein is still Trump's doctor.

NOW WATCH: Trump's doctor explain what's going on with his hair

Friday, August 4, 2017

Take A Look At Mama June

Mama June is maintaining her 300-pound weight loss.

The 37-year-old reality star showed off her trim bod while posing in a skintight black dress in a photo taken in May, but released on Thursday.

June, who has been keeping a low profile in Hampton, Georgia, since the April finale of Mama June: From Not to Hot, once weighed 460 pounds. She weighed 352 pounds at the start of the WE tv series, and with the help of a personal trainer, nutritionist and several surgeries, slimmed down to a size four. She now weighs about 132 pounds.

ET spoke with June in April, who said that her weight was "in the 160s" -- and that she will "never go back to what I looked like."

"I will do whatever it takes," she added, revealing that she spent "well over $50,000" on surgeries like gastric sleeve and a boob job. "You have to exercise and you have to maintain [this lifestyle]. A lot of people think that when you have surgeries, that it's just -- nothing else has to be done. And that is not the case. It is a live and learn thing."

Halle Berry reveals what Malia Obama was like as a PA, talks those pregnancy rumors:

ET Online      RACHEL MCRADY    
 Aug 4th 2017 
No job is beneath Malia Obama! The daughter of former President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama recently served as a production assistant on Halle Berry's sci-fi show, Extant, and on Thursday night, the 50-year-old actress dished about the experience on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen.

"She was fantastic, she was amazing," Berry told host Cohen of Malia. "She was down to do whatever a PA is asked to do, and I had wild respect for her for that."

But though Malia was willing to pull her weight, Berry did admit that others on the set didn't always treat her like a regular PA.

"Everybody couldn't really see her as a PA, although she tried and tried to be one," the Oscar winner admitted. "We just couldn't really see her as one, but to her credit, she tried very hard to be one."

The Kidnap star noted that she fangirled a bit over the 19-year-old, joking, "Can we call your dad or your mom? Yeah I was such a huge fan of her. She was amazing... She is such a smart, beautiful, young woman. Look at who her mother and her father are, so duh! It was amazing."

Berry herself rocked a dress with Michelle Obama's photo on it to the NY premiere of her new action thriller, posting a shot on Instagram of the look.

"In honor of the strongest, most fierce woman there ever was... Repping @MichelleObama to the NY premiere of #KidnapMovie tonight," Berry captioned the pic.

Berry also opened up about her recent pregnancy rumors, when photographers snapped shots of her on the carpet in June, seemingly holding her stomach.

"I was not holding my stomach," she explained to Cohen. "I was on the red carpet, doing my thing, like boom, boom, boom, right?... My arms were down, and I thought, 'I'm going to put my hands back on my hips,' so I go like this, and when I went like that, they went like, 'Ting ting ting ting ting,' [imitating fast camera flashes], and so they got pictures of me going like this."

The mother of two also explained her faux bump, saying, "I had a pretty big lunch, I had a burger and fries and I was a little poofed out... On my body, a burger and fries make a poof. But this is what these tricky MF's do. They put up pictures, and they take a moment and they make it like it's a moment but that was not a moment, it was just in transition."

Monday, July 31, 2017

Malia Obama Enjoys Night Out With A Mystery Man: New Boyfriend

 Malia;s boyfriend has a striking resemblance to her 'DAD'  .
Does Malia Obama have a new guy in her life!? The teenager sparked rumors of a relationship when she hit the streets of NYC with a mystery man on March 29. Check out the pics here!

Malia Obama, 18, has been living it up in New York City for the last few months, and she may have even found love while in town! Photographers caught the former First Daughter walking around SoHo on March 29 with an unidentified guy by her side. There does appear to be another girl with the pair, but there’s no mistaking that Malia and her mystery man are walking awfully close to one another.
In cuffed jeans, white sneakers and a red jacket, with her hair in a ponytail, Malia kept it super casual for the night out, while her male acquaintance rocked a long black coat and tan beanie. He must be pretty darn tall, though, because he towers a few inches above Malia, who we know is 6’1″. Whatever is going on here, it’s clear that Malia is having a great time with whoever this dude is.

The 18-year-old has been in the Big Apple since the end of January for her internship with the Weinstein Company. She opted to take a year off from school to pursue this first step in her career, but will head off to Harvard in the fall to continue her education.

“She said she loves living here,” an insider told EXCLUSIVELY. “She’s finally getting a chance to live a normal life. I think it’s a relief for her.” Malia’s time in NYC hasn’t been totally without drama — just earlier this week, a reporter accused her of yelling in his face and threatening to “punch” him in the face! But, overall, this latest venture definitely seems to be treating Malia well!

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Jared Kushner now a focus in Russia investigation

Investigators are focusing on a series of meetings held by Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and an influential White House adviser, as part of their probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and related matters, according to people familiar with the investigation. For full story go to the Washington Post:

Investigators are focusing on a series of meetings held by Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and an influential White House adviser, as part of their probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and related matters, according to people familiar with the investigation.
Kushner, who held meetings in December with the Russian ambassador and a banker from Moscow, is being investigated because of the extent and nature of his interactions with the Russians, the people said.
The Washington Post reported last week that a senior White House official close to the president was a significant focus of the high-stakes investigation, though it did not name Kushner.
FBI agents also remain keenly interested in former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, but Kushner is the only current White House official known to be considered a key person in the probe.
The Post has not been told that Kushner is a target — or the central focus — of the investigation, and he has not been accused of any wrongdoing. “Target” is a word that generally refers to someone who is the main suspect of investigators’ attention, though prosecutors can and do bring charges against people who are not marked with that distinction.


 Kushner's circle of friends and business ties includes prominent Russians.

2015 | Kushner, his brother and a friend start Cadre, a real estate company. Among its investors is Russian tech investor Yuri Milner. Read more

December 2016 | Kushner, Flynn and Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak meet at Trump Tower for 20 minutes just as the Obama administration was preparing to sanction Russia, according to the New York Times. Kushner sent a deputy to another meeting that month. Later, at Kislyak's request, Kushner met for about half an hour with Sergey N. Gorkov, chief of Vnesheconombank, which is on the U.S. sanctions list. Read more

Jan. 20, 2017 | Dasha Zhukova, wife of oligarch and Putin friend Roman Abramovich, attends the inauguration as a guest of Ivanka Trump.

March 27, 2017 | White House and Senate officials say Kushner will be available to interview with the Senate Intelligence Committee. Read more 

May 25, 2017 | The Post reports Kushner's meetings in December with Kislyak and Gorkov are now under scrutiny as part of an escalating probe into Trump's campaign ties to the Kremlin. Kushner has not been accused of any wrongdoing, and the scrutiny does not mean that he will face any charges.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

FBI Director James Comey thought Trump's firing him was a prank

May 10th 2017 10:34 AM
FBI Director James Comey learned a little too late that his firing was no joke.

Comey reportedly saw the news break on TV that he'd been fired by President Trump after speaking with FBI agents at a field office in LA.

According to The New York Times, he laughed and said he found it to be a fairly funny prank.

Comey was still with the group and shaking hands of the FBI employees with who he had been talking.

When His staff then ushered him into a side office and found out that it was not, in fact, a prank.

However, Comey had not received word from the White House about his firing at that point.

Though he was in Los Angeles, White House aide Keith Schiller was sent to FBI headquarters in Washington, DC to hand-deliver the letter from President Trump dismissing him.
Not long after, Comey boarded a flight back to Washington.

Witchy sez : 
Comey found out to late that dog won''t hunt ..... HeHe

Anonymous warns of 'devastating' World War III in new video

May 10th 2017 6:08AM
The Internet group known as Anonymous is continuing to warn the public of an impending World War III.

The hackers posted a new video to YouTube on Saturday titled, "They are preparing for what comes next...(WW3 2017-2018)."

In it, a single figure in a Guy Fawkes mask appears to be reading from a paper as he says in a digitized voice, "All the signs of a looming war on the Korean peninsula are surfacing. Watching as each country moves strategic pieces into place."

The person then notes, "But unlike past world wars, although there will be ground troops, the battle is likely to be fierce, brutal and quick. It will also be globally devastating, both on the environmental and economical levels."

The figure adds, "This is a real war with real global consequences."

According to the video, the conflict will erupt due to unresolvable tension between North Korea and those working towards a peaceful resolution, including the U.S., South Korea, Japan, China, and the Philippines.

As evidence, the group cited the U.S. testing of an intercontinental ballistic missile, the Japanese government's warning to its citizens to be prepared, and the Trump administration's recent interactions with Australia and Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte.

Anonymous had warned of the potential for World War III in another YouTube video posted in October of last year.

In that video, the group talks about frayed relations between the U.S. and China over the South China Sea but also focuses on friction with Russia, particularly over Syria.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Obama warned Trump about Michael Flynn during transition

FILE PHOTO - White House National Security Advisor Michael Flynn walks down the White House colonnade on the way to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump's joint news conference at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 10, 2017. REUTERS/Jim Bourg/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former U.S. President Barack Obama warned then-President-elect Donald Trump not to give the post of national security adviser in his administration to Michael Flynn who was eventually fired in a controversy about ties to Russia, a former Obama aide said.
Obama gave the warning in an Oval Office meeting with Trump just days after the Republican's surprise election win last Nov. 8. The warning, first reported by NBC News, came up during a discussion of White House personnel.
White House spokesman Sean Spicer, responding to the reports, told a news briefing: "It's true that the president, President Obama, made it known that he wasn't exactly a fan of General Flynn's" during a one-hour meeting on Nov. 10 with Trump.
An Obama spokesman initially declined to comment.
Flynn has emerged as a central figure in probes into allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election and possible collusion between Trump's campaign and Moscow.
He had been pushed out by Obama in 2014 from his job as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, or DIA, during the Democratic president's term in office.
A former U.S. deputy attorney general, Sally Yates, is expected to tell a Senate Judiciary subcommittee later Monday that she had warned the White House counsel after Trump took office that Flynn had not told the truth about conversations he had held with Russia's ambassador to Washington.
Trump fired Flynn, a retired general, in February for failing to disclose talks with Ambassador Sergei Kislyak about U.S. sanctions on Moscow and then misleading Vice President Mike Pence about the conversations.
Congressional committees began investigating after U.S. intelligence agencies concluded that Russian President Vladimir Putin had ordered hacking of Democratic political groups to try to sway the election toward Trump. Moscow has denied any such meddling.
Trump has also dismissed the allegations, suggesting instead that Obama might have wiretapped Trump Tower in New York or that China may have been behind the cyber attacks. He has provided no evidence and neither scenario has been supported by intelligence agencies.
Hours before Monday's Senate hearing, Trump insinuated that Yates, an Obama administration appointment, had leaked information on Flynn to the media.
"Ask Sally Yates, under oath, if she knows how classified information got into the newspapers soon after she explained it to W.H. Council," Trump wrote on Twitter, apparently mis-spelling the word counsel.
In another Twitter post, Trump noted that Flynn had been granted top security clearance while working in the Obama administration.
Flynn was fired from the DIA in 2014 for what officials familiar with the issue said was a disruptive management style that included instructing analysts to find intelligence substantiating improbable theories that some subordinates came to call "Flynn facts." He also advocated an overhaul of the DIA that ignited resistance from veteran intelligence officials, the officials said.
James Clapper, Obama's former Director of National Intelligence, will also testify to the Senate panel on Monday.
The Senate Judiciary subcommittee probe is one of three main congressional investigations of Russia and the 2016 U.S. election. The FBI and U.S. intelligence agencies are conducting separate probes.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Biracial UT pageant winner slammed as 'not black enough' on Twitter

By Carolyn Salazar  Published May 04, 2017  Fox News
The winner of the Miss Black University of Texas is taking the high road after critics on social media claimed she's “not black enough.”

Congratulations to our 2017 Miss Black University of Texas! We thank our lovely contestants, as well as everyone else who came to support them .

Rachael Malonson, 22, who is biracial, was crowned on Sunday. The event was hosted by Kappa Alpha Psi, a predominantly black fraternity.

“It was definitely a huge honor to win. As a biracial woman, I didn’t even think I was able to place,” she told Fox News.

In a Facebook post after her win, Malonson said she was at first reluctant to take part in the pageant because of her mixed race.

Malonson, whose father is black and whose mother is white, said she was taken off guard by the criticism, particularly since part of her pageant platform was trying to break down stereotypes and educating people about racial identity.

“I didn’t realize that even after I received the title I would still have to explain myself, that there was still ignorant people out there who are asking me to prove myself,” she said. “Just because I have straight hair and olive skin tone doesn’t mean I’m not black…I don’t have to look a certain way to be black.”

Malonson, who is a senior and a broadcasting and journalism student at the University of Texas, seems to have taken the criticism in stride. In a Twitter post and to Fox News, she thanked everyone who came out and supported her, particularly those in the African American community.

“The beautiful thing about this is all the people her [at UT] who have come out and defended me,” she said. “It shows I have a beautiful support system here.”

She said she will take this experience and turn it into an opportunity. She will dedicate the next year to educating people about racial identity and breaking down stereotypes by posting videos from different people talking about their cultural and racial roots.

“And I will continue to support black women empowerment,” she said.

In a story in the Daily Texan, a student newspaper, Malonson said she has long struggled with her mixed heritage because no one could figure out where she was from. So many people thought she was Hispanic, she said, that she started to believe it herself – even though she was not.

“I remember I felt so insecure because people didn’t understand who I was by my look,” Malonson said. “I’m confident in it now and see it as a unique trait where I’m able to teach people that not every black person (and) not every mixed person looks the same way.”

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

White House: Trump, Putin discuss Syria, North Korea, Middle East in phone call

THOMSON REUTERS        May 2nd 2017 
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed working together to end the violence in Syria on Tuesday in their first phone call since U.S. air strikes in Syria strained U.S.-Russian relations.

The White House said the two leaders agreed that "all parties must do all they can to end the violence" in Syria and that Trump and Putin also discussed working together against Islamic militants throughout the Middle East.

"The conversation was a very good one, and included the discussion of safe, or de-escalation, zones to achieve lasting peace for humanitarian and many other reasons," a White House statement said.
Kremlin readout of Trump/Putin phone call includes a little something the White House left out…

Trump's decision to launch 59 cruise missiles against a Syrian airfield on April 4 in retaliation for a chemical weapons attack angered the Russians and led to some bitter exchanges between the two governments.

The White House statement said Washington will send a representative to Syrian cease-fire talks in Astana, Kazakhstan, on Wednesday and Thursday.

"They also discussed at length working together to eradicate terrorism throughout the Middle East. Finally, they spoke about how best to resolve the very dangerous situation in North Korea," the statement said.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Trumpty Dumpty


Trumpty got miffed and waved his little hands.
He yelled, "you're forgetting I'm king of this land.
I destroyed Obama Care and NAFTA too.
Not one of my promises will ever come true.
 I say screw climate change, that's my call.
If you don't like it I'll deport you all.
 I'm on a quest to crash and burn.
And you'll never see my tax returns."

The genie

Thursday, April 27, 2017


Michael Mantenuto -- who played Jack O'Callahan in Disney's "Miracle" -- killed himself Monday in Washington State.

The actor, a former University of Maine hockey player, was found dead in his car by police in Des Moines. WA. The coroner tells TMZ ... Michael committed suicide by shooting himself. 

As a budding actor with hockey skills, Michael landed the role in the Disney flick about the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team. He only acted in 2 other movies, and went on to enlist in the army ... and joined the Special Forces.

Col. Guillaume Beaurpere, commander of Mantenuto's army unit, announced his death.
He was 35.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Missing Tennessee teen allegedly abducted by former teacher found in California

AOL.COM EDITORS          April  20th 2017 
Tennessee teacher Tad Cummins has been caught by law enforcement after a weeks-long manhunt across multiple states after he allegedly kidnapped 15-year-old Elizabeth Thomas.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation reports that Cummins, 50, was apprehended in California with Thomas, the teen who vanished with him more than one month ago. Authorities reported that she was found safe as well.

The end to the month-long nationwide manhunt came after officials found Cummins' Nissan Rogue on Wednesday night. The duo had last been spotted in Oklahoma City on surveillance footage at a Wal-Mart on March 30.

Cummins, who is married, and Thomas became the subject of a nationwide search after the teacher apparently lured Thomas into his car outside of a Shoney's restaurant in Columbia, Tennessee, about 45 miles south of Nashville.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation put him on its top 10 "most wanted" list shortly afterwards.

Cummins was suspended from his position in February after he ignored an order that barred Thomas from entering his classroom. The month before a student had reported seeing the 50-year-old and teenager kissing.
The two had disappeared on March 13.

Cummins will face charges of sexual contact with a minor and aggravated kidnapping, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Putin-linked think tank drew up plan to sway 2016 US election: documents

Thomson Reuters
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A Russian government think tank controlled by Vladimir Putin developed a plan to swing the 2016 U.S. presidential election to Donald Trump and undermine voters' faith in the American electoral system, three current and four former U.S. officials told Reuters.

They described two confidential documents from the think tank as providing the framework and rationale for what U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded was an intensive effort by Russia to interfere with the Nov. 8 election. U.S. intelligence officials acquired the documents, which were prepared by the Moscow-based Russian Institute for Strategic Studies [], after the election.

The institute is run by retired senior Russian foreign intelligence officials appointed by Putin's office.

The first Russian institute document was a strategy paper written last June that circulated at the highest levels of the Russian government but was not addressed to any specific individuals.

It recommended the Kremlin launch a propaganda campaign on social media and Russian state-backed global news outlets to encourage U.S. voters to elect a president who would take a softer line toward Russia than the administration of then-President Barack Obama, the seven officials said.

A second institute document, drafted in October and distributed in the same way, warned that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was likely to win the election. For that reason, it argued, it was better for Russia to end its pro-Trump propaganda and instead intensify its messaging about voter fraud to undermine the U.S. electoral system's legitimacy and damage Clinton's reputation in an effort to undermine her presidency, the seven officials said.

The current and former U.S. officials spoke on the condition of anonymity due to the Russian documents' classified status. They declined to discuss how the United States obtained them. U.S. intelligence agencies also declined to comment on them.

Putin has denied interfering in the U.S. election. Putin's spokesman and the Russian institute did not respond to requests for comment.

The documents were central to the Obama administration's conclusion that Russia mounted a "fake news" campaign and launched cyber attacks against Democratic Party groups and Clinton's campaign, the current and former officials said.
"Putin had the objective in mind all along, and he asked the institute to draw him a road map," said one of the sources, a former senior U.S. intelligence official.

Trump has said Russia's activities had no impact on the outcome of the race. Ongoing congressional and FBI investigations into Russian interference have so far produced no public evidence that Trump associates colluded with the Russian effort to change the outcome of the election.

Four of the officials said the approach outlined in the June strategy paper was a broadening of an effort the Putin administration launched in March 2016. That month the Kremlin instructed state-backed media outlets, including international platforms Russia Today and Sputnik news agency, to start producing positive reports on Trump's quest for the U.S. presidency, the officials said.

Russia Today did not respond to a request for comment. A spokesperson for Sputnik dismissed the assertions by the U.S. officials that it participated in a Kremlin campaign as an "absolute pack of lies." "And by the way, it's not the first pack of lies we're hearing from 'sources in U.S. official circles'," the spokesperson said in an email.


Russia Today and Sputnik published anti-Clinton stories while pro-Kremlin bloggers prepared a Twitter campaign calling into question the fairness of an anticipated Clinton victory, according to a report by U.S. intelligence agencies on Russian interference in the election made public in January. []

Russia Today's most popular Clinton video - "How 100% of the 2015 Clintons' 'charity' went to ... themselves" - accumulated 9 millions views on social media, according to the January report. []


Neither of the Russian institute documents mentioned the release of hacked Democratic Party emails to interfere with the U.S. election, according to four of the officials. The officials said the hacking was a covert intelligence operation run separately out of the Kremlin.

The overt propaganda and covert hacking efforts reinforced each other, according to the officials. Both Russia Today and Sputnik heavily promoted the release of the hacked Democratic Party emails, which often contained embarrassing details.

SEE ALSO: Russia vetoes UN resolution on Syria attack, China abstains

Five of the U.S. officials described the institute as the Kremlin's in-house foreign policy think tank.

The institute's director when the documents were written, Leonid Reshetnikov, rose to the rank of lieutenant general during a 33-year-career in Russia's foreign intelligence service, according to the institute's website []. After Reshetnikov retired from the institute in January, Putin named as his replacement Mikhail Fradkov. The institute says he served as the director of Russia's foreign intelligence service from 2007 to 2016. []

Reuters was unable to determine if either man was directly involved in the drafting of the documents. Reshetnikov's office referred questions to the Russian institute.

On its website, the Russian institute describes itself as providing "expert appraisals," "recommendations," and "analytical materials" to the Russian president's office, cabinet, National Security Council, ministries and parliament. []

On Jan. 31, the websites of Putin's office [] and the institute [] posted a picture and transcript of Reshetnikov and his successor Fradkov meeting with Putin in the Kremlin. Putin thanked Reshetnikov for his service and told Fradkov he wanted the institute to provide objective information and analysis.

"We did our best for nearly eight years to implement your foreign policy concept," Reshetnikov told Putin. "The policy of Russia and the policy of the President of Russia have been the cornerstone of our operation."

(Reporting by Ned Parker and Jonathan Landay, additional reporting by Warren Strobel and Arshad Mohammed; Editing by David Rohde and Ross Colvin)

Mark Zuckerberg Disgusted With Social Media; Set To Leave Facebook Later This Year

(ET, Wednesday, April 19, 2017) - Mark Zuckerberg helped to create a whole new world when he unveiled Facebook in 2004. Barely 20 years old, the fresh faced college student knew he had something special with his technological find. But even this genius had no way to predict how Facebook would change the world.

Now, just 17 years later, this 32-year-old billionaire is ready to give it all up? Why? According to those closest to the developer, Zuckerberg is disgusted with the way the public has used and abused the platform. “He wanted to create a way for people to connect; not tear them apart,” explained one colleague.

Since its inception, Facebook has enjoyed a wild ride of success. With more than 1.2 billion people logging on every single day, one would think that Zuckerberg fulfilled his dream of global connection. But, according to friends and coworkers, that wasn’t at all what Zuckerberg had in mind when he and a group of friends built the concept (and the reality) of the famous site back in their Harvard dormitory.

“What Mark wanted most was to bring the world together. It’s not good enough if it brings along some people and leaves others behind.” And when it comes to using the platform he created to bully or disparage others, Zuckerberg is completely disgusted. “He hates the way some users utilize the platform to bring others down or even to circulate false accounts of events or history.”

While Facebook itself begins a new chapter in harnessing its platform for the betterment of society, focusing on remaking the site in order to offer global connectedness while fighting isolationism and social ills. Although a manifesto recently released by Zuckerberg himself outlines a long-term plan by his company to revamp the site and “focus on social infrastructure for the community for supporting us, for keeping us safe, for informing us, for civic engagement, and for inclusion of all,” many behind the scenes say that the Facebook founder has no intention of being a part of the changes and will announce his exit from Facebook in the coming months.

Since marrying wife Priscilla Chan M.D., in 2012, Zuckerberg has discovered a new passion: for eradicating disease and living a healthier lifestyle. A pediatrician who specializes in childhood disease, Chan convinced her husband last year to fund the Chan-Zuckerberg initiative, whose main focus is health and education. The initiative has also cited a long-term goal of working towards eradicating all disease by the end of the 21st century.

Monday, April 17, 2017


Prince's death scene was riddled with pills strewn around his home ... this according to search warrants just released by Minnesota authorities.
According to new docs, law enforcement found Ziploc bags with pills as well as envelopes containing pills.
The docs bear out what TMZ has reported ... Prince's bodyguard was the person who went to a Walgreens pharmacy the day preceding the singer's death to fill prescriptions, including Percocet.
And, Prince used an alias -- Peter Bravestrong -- and cops found a suitcase with that name that contained pill bottles along with the lyrics for the song, "U Got the Look."
The main doctor who was treating Prince -- Dr. Michael Schulenberg -- admitted to a detective he had prescribed Prince Oxycodone the same day Prince OD'd on a jet -- 6 days before he died. The doctor put the Rx in Prince's bodyguard's name.
Prince would regularly get B12 injections before his concerts to feel better and they were set up through his managers.
And this is interesting ... Prince didn't use a cellphone ... apparently because he was once hacked and didn't trust it. His communications were through emails and landlines.
As we reported ... Prince died of an overdose of the powerful painkiller Fentanyl.