FBI has information that indicates Trump associates coordinated with the Russians

Washington (CNN) — The FBI has information that indicates associates of President Donald Trump communicated with suspected Russian operatives to possibly coordinate the release of information damaging to Hillary Clinton’s campaign, US officials told CNN.

This is partly what FBI Director James Comey was referring to when he made a bombshell announcement Monday before Congress that the FBI is investigating the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia, according to one source.

The FBI is now reviewing that information, which includes human intelligence, travel, business and phone records and accounts of in-person meetings, according to those U.S. officials. The information is raising the suspicions of FBI counterintelligence investigators that the coordination may have taken place, though officials cautioned that the information was not conclusive and that the investigation is ongoing.

In his statement on Monday Comey said the FBI began looking into possible coordination between Trump campaign associates and suspected Russian operatives because the bureau had gathered “a credible allegation of wrongdoing or reasonable basis to believe an American may be acting as an agent of a foreign power.”

The White House did not comment and the FBI declined to comment.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer maintained Monday after Comey’s testimony that there was no evidence to suggest any collusion took place.

“Investigating it and having proof of it are two different things,” Spicer said.

One law enforcement official said the information in hand suggests “people connected to the campaign were in contact and it appeared they were giving the thumbs up to release information when it was ready.” But other U.S. officials who spoke to CNN say it’s premature to draw that inference from the information gathered so far since it’s largely circumstantial.

The FBI cannot yet prove that collusion took place, but the information suggesting collusion is now a large focus of the investigation, the officials said.

The FBI has already been investigating four former Trump campaign associates — Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort, Roger Stone and Carter Page — for contacts with Russians known to US intelligence. All four have denied improper contacts and CNN has not confirmed any of them are the subjects of the information the FBI is reviewing.

Posted in 2016 Elections, Current Events, Fraud, HACKING, News, Open Thread, Politics, Treason | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 56 Comments

Thursday Open Thread | I thought that there were only 3 African Countries on the Unconstitutional Banned List?

And, since it has been blocked by judges…WHY IS THIS HAPPENING?

There was an Africa trade meeting with no Africans because all their visas got denied
by Harriet Marsden

Each year, delegations from Africa meet with officials and business leaders in the US for the African Global Economic and Development (AGED) Summit.

This year’s event took place at the University of Southern California (USC) in Los Angeles.

But unfortunately, one crucial aspect was missing from the summit – any Africans.

None of the invited delegates were able to attend, due to being denied a visa at the very last minute.

Mary Flowers, chair of the summit, told VOA that during the previous three summits around 40 per cent of attendees were denied visas.

She estimated that around 100 guests, from Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and South Africa, were unable to attend.

According to Flowers, many who had applied for their visas weeks or months in advance were only called for embassy interviews days before they were supposed to travel.


I have to say that most of us feel it’s a discrimination issue with the African nations.

We experience it over and over and over, and the people being rejected are legitimate business people with ties to the continent

You feel it’s a discrimination BECAUSE IT’S DISCRIMINATION.

You have White Supremacists IN the White House…

You better believe it’s discrimination.

Those of us against that Travel Ban told you right after the first one….’Only 3 African Countries’ on it..

The entire continent will be on it before the end of 2017.
Bet.on.it.

Posted in 2016 Elections, discrimination, Open Thread, Politics | Tagged , , , , | 65 Comments

#ProtectBlackWomen: White Man Threatens to Hit Black Mother at The Spur Steak Ranches

The management staff at The Spur Steak Ranches was an UTTER DISGRACE in handling the violence directed at a mother & little children celebrating a 3 year old’s birthday party. Filthy trash bum was going to fight a woman with kids surrounding the table. He didn’t give a damn about endangering the lives of little children either. Why isn’t he in jail?

Posted in Current Events, News, Open Thread, Violence | Tagged , , , , | 20 Comments

Wednesday Open Thread | ” Acknowledge the power and reach of socialism for White People.”

Very good article:

Unspeakable Realities Block Universal Health Coverage In America
Chris Ladd
Contributor
A recovering Republican.

excerpt:
When it seems like people are voting against their interests, I have probably failed to understand their interests. We cannot begin to understand Election 2016 until we acknowledge the power and reach of socialism for white people.

Americans with good jobs live in a socialist welfare state more generous, cushioned and expensive to the public than any in Europe. Like a European system, we pool our resources to share the burden of catastrophic expenses, but unlike European models, our approach doesn’t cover everyone.

Like most of my neighbors I have a good job in the private sector. Ask my neighbors about the cost of the welfare programs they enjoy and you will be greeted by baffled stares. All that we have is “earned” and we perceive no need for government support. Nevertheless, taxpayers fund our retirement saving, health insurance, primary, secondary, and advanced education, daycare, commuter costs, and even our mortgages at a staggering public cost. Socialism for white people is all-enveloping, benevolent, invisible, and insulated by the nasty, deceptive notion that we have earned our benefits by our own hand.

My family’s generous health insurance costs about $20,000 a year, of which we pay only $4,000 in premiums. The rest is subsidized by taxpayers. You read that right. Like virtually everyone else on my block who isn’t old enough for Medicare or employed by the government, my family is covered by private health insurance subsidized by taxpayers at a stupendous public cost. Well over 90% of white households earning over the white median income (about $75,000) carried health insurance even before the Affordable Care Act. White socialism is nice if you can get it.

Companies can deduct the cost of their employees’ health insurance while employees are not required to report that benefit as income. That results in roughly a $400 billion annual transfer of funds from state and federal treasuries to insurers to provide coverage for the Americans least in need of assistance. This is one of the defining features of white socialism, the most generous benefits go to those who are best suited to provide for themselves. Those benefits are not limited to health care.

By funding government programs with tax credits and deductions rather than spending, we have created an enormous social safety net that grows ever more generous as household incomes rise. It is important to note, though, that you need not be wealthy to participate. All you need to gain access to socialism for white people is a good corporate or government job. That fact helps explain how this welfare system took shape sixty years ago, why it was originally (and still overwhelmingly) white, and why white Rust Belt voters showed far more enthusiasm for Donald Trump than for Bernie Sanders. White voters are not interested in democratic socialism. They want to restore their access to a more generous and dignified program of white socialism.

Absolutely on point.

They want to return to the delusional days of Mad Men. Pretending that it was a meritocracy. Pretending that they were big fish in a big pond. In reality, they were fish in a pond where 90% of the other fish were crammed into sardine cans. Now those cans are open, they have to compete with everyone, and they’re mad about that.

Posted in 2016 Elections, Affordable Care Act, Open Thread, Politics | Tagged , , , | 100 Comments

Nancy Abu-Bonsrah | Johns Hopkins’ First Black Female Neurosurgeon Resident

The most important day for fourth year medical students is the third Friday in March, when they find out where they have been accepted for their residency program. It’s called Match Day. For medical student Nancy Abu-Bonsrah, it also became the day she made history as the first Black woman to become a neurosurgery resident at Johns Hopkins Hospital.

After moving from Ghana to the United States with her parents at age 15, Abu-Bonsrah went on to earn a Bachelor of Science in biochemistry and chemistry from Mount St. Mary’s University. In 2012, she started her medical student journey at the prestigious Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, where she will graduate as the first doctor in her family. Upon completion of her neurosurgery training residency program, Abu-Bonsrah is also set to become the first Black woman neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins. Abu-Bonsrah shared the good news on her personal Facebook page.

Posted in Current Events, Health, News, Open Thread | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments

Tuesday Open Thread | Someone needs to sue Customs for this unlawful harassment

THIS is what’s happening to American Citizens who ‘fit the profile’:

This is outrageous.

CBP detained the former police chief of Greenville, NC for 90 minutes

From Facebook:

Hassan Aden
Yesterday at 3:27pm ·

Details of my CBP Detention at JFK Int. Airport:

After spending a lovely weekend in Paris celebrating my mom’s 80th birthday, I happily boarded my flight to return to the United States-something I have done countless times for 42 years after becoming a U.S. citizen. I had an enjoyable flight to New York’s JFK International Airport. On all of my prior trips, I was greeted by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers with a warm smile and the usual, “Welcome home sir”. Not this time. I approached CBP Officer Chow who didn’t say anything when I handed him my passport and looked at me with a gruff expression and simply stated, “are you traveling alone?”, I knew this was a sign of trouble, I answered “yes”, he then said, “Let’s take a walk”.

I was taken to a back office which looked to be a re-purposed storage facility with three desks and signs stating, “Remain seated at all times” and “Use of telephones strictly prohibited” – my first sign that this was not a voluntary situation and, in fact, a detention. By this point I had informed CBP Officer Chow, the one that initially detained me, that I was a retired police chief and a career police officer AND a US citizen-he stated that he had no control over the circumstance and that it didn’t matter what my occupation was. He handed my passport off to another CBP officer who was working at one of the desks. The second CBP officer was indeed kind and appreciated the fact that I was a career police officer and tried to be helpful. He explained that my name was used as an alias by someone on some watch list. He stated that he sent my information to another agency to de-conflict and clear me, so that I could gain passage into the United States….my own country!!!

As I sat in the CBP detention center, numerous, at least 25, foreign nationals were also brought in and quickly released, their detentions were reasonable and appropriate, maybe 5 or so minutes while their passports were checked. I pointed out the irony of this fact to the CBP officer that was attempting to “clear me for entry”. I told him, as he avoided eye contact, how wrong this scenario was that the only US citizen, career US police officer and chief of police, out of the group of detainees, was the one with the longest unreasonable detention- I was held for an hour and a half. I asked several times, “how long of a detention do you consider to be reasonable?”, the answer I was given by CBP Officer Chow was that I was not being detained-he said that with a straight face. I then replied, “But I’m not free to leave-how is that not a detention?” I was in a room with no access to my mobile phone to communicate with my wife and family about what was happening, my movements were restricted to a chair and they had my passport………and he had the audacity to tell me I was not being detained. His ignorance of the law and the Fourth Amendment should disqualify him from being able to wear a CBP badge – but maybe fear and detention is the new mission of the CBP and the Constitution is a mere suggestion. I certainly was not free to leave. As former law enforcement, believe me, I agree that if certain criteria is met, a reasonable investigative detention is not inappropriate-the key here being “reasonable”.

As I continued to sit in the CBP makeshift Detention Center, watching numerous foreign nationals enter my country while I couldn’t, I began thinking about my numerous trips abroad -including five in the past year (all prior to inauguration) – with no problems upon my return and complete with the warm greeting of “Welcome home”.

Fortunately, a CBP officer that had just started her shift took interest in my situation and began to inquire with the “other agency” that was reviewing my information-she aggressively asked them for status updates and eventually called me over to tell me that I was cleared to enter the United States of America. I promptly thanked her and filled her in on how impactful this situation was-she apologized and I was on my way after an hour and a half detention.

I spent nearly 30 years serving the public in law enforcement. Since I retired as the Chief of Police in Greenville, NC, I founded a successful consulting firm that is involved in virtually every aspect of police and criminal justice reform. I interface with high level U.S. Department of Justice and Federal Court officials almost daily. Prior to this administration, I frequently attended meetings at the White House and advised on national police policy reforms-all that to say that If this can happen to me, it can happen to anyone with attributes that can be “profiled”. No one is safe from this type of unlawful government intrusion.

As I left the CBP makeshift detention center, I had to go back through security to catch my next flight back to DC, ironically, due to my weekly air travel, I have TSA Pre-check and was whisked through security without a hitch and made my flight by minutes.

This experience has left me feeling vulnerable and unsure of the future of a country that was once great and that I proudly called my own. This experience makes me question if this is indeed home. My freedoms were restricted, and I cannot be sure it won’t happen again, and that it won’t happen to my family, my children, the next time we travel abroad. This country now feels cold, unwelcoming, and in the beginning stages of a country that is isolating itself from the rest of the world – and its own people – in an unprecedented fashion. High levels of hate and injustice have been felt in vulnerable communities for decades-it is now hitting the rest of America.

I have contacted my US senators, and my contacts at the NYT and other media sources to continue to tell the story of what is happening in the United States of America.

Posted in Open Thread, Politics, Racial Profiling | Tagged , , , , | 75 Comments

House Intel Committee hearings on Donald Trump and Russia

(CNN) — The bizarre saga of President Donald Trump‘s claims that he was wiretapped by President Barack Obama last year reaches a dramatic climax Monday with FBI Director James Comey’s testimony to the House Intelligence Committee.

It’s a moment of political theater that could end in humiliation for Trump, with Comey expected to say that there was no wiretapping, debunking allegations that Trump has repeatedly refused to withdraw.

The hearing could also shed light on the state of FBI investigations into the extent of Russian meddling in the election campaign. Republicans hope Comey will state that there is no evidence of collusion between Trump aides and officials from Moscow, a move that could begin to break up a cloud of Russian intrigue that has stifled the early weeks of the administration.

Trump was trying to shift attention away from the wiretapping claims in a series of Monday morning tweets.

“James Clapper and others stated that there is no evidence Potus colluded with Russia. This story is FAKE NEWS and everyone knows it!” Trump wrote shortly after 6:30 a.m. ET, followed by: “The Democrats made up and pushed the Russian story as an excuse for running a terrible campaign. Big advantage in Electoral College & lost!”

Watch Live: House hearing on Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election

The controversy over the wiretapping claims was unleashed by stunning early morning tweets from the President at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida two weeks ago. He drew parallels to Watergate and McCarthyism and said Obama was a “Bad (or sick) guy!” for ordering surveillance of his New York residence — allegations the former president quickly denied through a spokesman.

Posted in 2016 Elections, Current Events, HACKING, News, Open Thread, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | 60 Comments