A federal judge on Monday cleared the way for President Trump’s fraudulent “voter fraud” commission to proceed in gathering personal data on the nation’s voters. The 35 page order and opinion is HERE (.pdf).
The New York Times reports, Judge Clears Way for Trump’s Voter Fraud Panel to Collect Data:
[Trump’s fraudulent “voter fraud” commission], which was created after the president falsely claimed that millions of illegal votes cost him the popular vote in 2016, has come under siege from many organizations that have filed lawsuits accusing the commission of violating federal privacy laws. The judge’s decision on Monday delivered a setback to the opposition, which has objected to the commission’s expansive request for the personal and public data about the country’s 200 million voters.
The Electronic Privacy Information Center, which filed the suit, sought to stop the commission from acquiring the voter data, claiming that the panel should have conducted a privacy impact assessment before asking states for the personal information. But the judge, Colleen Kollar-Kotelly of Federal District Court, said the panel did not qualify as a federal agency, so it was not required to conduct and publish a privacy assessment.
So this is a narrow ruling based on a statutory technicality, not a sweeping endorsement of the commission.
Posted in AZBlueMeanie, Civil Rights, Conspiracy Theory, Corruption, Courts, Election Integrity, Elections, Ethics, GOP War On..., Party Politics, President, Scandals
Tagged voting rights
Donald Trump has repeatedly claimed, without evidence, that widespread voter fraud caused him to lose the popular vote to Hillary Clinton by almost 3 million votes, even while he won the presidency with an electoral college victory. Without evidence, Trump tells lawmakers 3 million to 5 million illegal ballots cost him the popular vote.
In pursuit of the delusions of our always insecure egomaniacal Twitter-troll-in-chief, Donald Trump issued an “Executive Order Establishing of Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity.”
Yeah, that’s not at all what this executive order is about. It is about Trump trying to validate his delusions that he won the popular vote but for voter fraud by millions of Americans. Trump’s commission on voter fraud is, well, fraudulent.
There is no evidence to support Mr. Trump’s claims that millions of people voted illegally in 2016, which have been discredited repeatedly by fact-checkers.
Sherrilyn Ifill, the president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, warned when Trump’s executive order was announced that the commission is “a thinly veiled voter suppression task force,” adding that it was “designed to impugn the integrity of African-American and Latino participation in the political process.” NAACP Legal Defense Fund Statement on Expected Voter Fraud Commission. She is absolutely right.
Posted in AZBlueMeanie, Campaigns, Civil Rights, Conspiracy Theory, Corruption, Election Integrity, Elections, Ethics, GOP War On..., Party Politics, President, Racism, Scandals
Tagged Arizona Secretary of State, voting rights
Richard Nixon’s media henchman, Roger Ailes, the founder of the FOX News Channel, died this week. May the abomination he created, “FAUX News,” be buried along with him. Dante had to create a new ring of the Inferno on the arrival of Ailes in Hell to sit at the right hand of Satan, who now has a new PR man.
We’ve discussed this phenomenon before. The conservative media entertainment complex is an ancillary to Russian ‘active measures’ propaganda.
The latest example is the right-wing noise machine’s ginning up a “fake news” conspiracy theory about the suicide of Seth Rich last year. This is something the right-wing noise machine has done before with the Vince Foster conspiracy theory, long before the Russian’s current dezinformatsiya “fake news” cyber war against the U.S. In rumors around a DNC staffer’s death, a whiff of a Clinton-era conspiracy theory:
[A]fter multiple inquiries by police, FBI agents, Republicans, Democrats and two special prosecutors had all debunked the still-persistent falsehood that the Clintons had Vince Foster killed to protect themselves from what he knew.
The latest vessel for Vince Foster paranoia is the story of Seth Rich, a Democratic National Committee staffer who was found shot to death last year, while Hillary Clinton was campaigning for president.
As with Foster, local authorities have tried to dispel rumors that politics played a role in Rich’s death. In this case, D.C. police believe he died in a random robbery attempt.
Relatives have also begged rumormongers to lay off. On Tuesday, a family spokesman decried a Fox News report suggesting Rich was involved in leaking Democratic Party documents before his death.
It looks as if we have a House of Cards power struggle going on inside Trumpland between Crown Prince Jared Kushner and Trump’s “America First” white nationalist bomb thrower, Stephen Bannon.
Guess who is going to win this fight.
The New York Times reports today, In Battle for Trump’s Heart and Mind, It’s Bannon vs. Kushner (snippet):
The schism within Mr. Trump’s perpetually fractious White House has grown in recent weeks, fueled by personality, ideology and ambition. At its core are Mr. Bannon, the edgy, nationalist bomb-thrower suddenly in the seat of power, and Mr. Kushner, the polished, boyish-looking scion of New Jersey and New York real estate. Even as Mr. Kushner’s portfolio of responsibilities has been expanding, Mr. Bannon’s in recent days has shrunk with the loss of a national security post.
Paul Waldman of the Washington Post reports on how the conservative media entertainment complex and the Trump administration are amplifying “active measures” (propaganda) practiced by the Russians, as we learned from expert testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee last week. Anatomy of a fake scandal, ginned up by right-wing media and Trump:
President Trump started off his morning as he often does, by settling in to watch the festival of nincompoopery that is “Fox & Friends.” On the show, he saw something that he believes vindicates the bizarre and false charge he made that Barack Obama was tapping his phones during the presidential campaign.
I’ll try to sort through the substance of all this. But I also want to make a broader argument about how Trump’s support system — inside his government but especially in the conservative media and on Fox, which is where he apparently gets most of his intelligence information — is playing to his worst instincts, harming him politically, and making his presidency even more dangerous.
Today’s antics all started with a report on “Fox & Friends” in which correspondent Adam Housley reported that a high-ranking Obama administration official had requested the “unmasking” of the names of Trump officials who were caught up in surveillance of foreign targets. Ordinarily, when a U.S. person shows up in such surveillance — say, talking to a Russian ambassador whose communications are being monitored — that person’s identity is blacked out in reports on the surveillance. While Housley did not identify the Obama administration official, he did say that Trump associates were being picked up by this surveillance for a year before Trump took office.
Posted in AZBlueMeanie, Campaigns, Conspiracy Theory, Corruption, Election Integrity, Elections, Ethics, International, Media, Party Politics, President, Scandals, War
Tagged Cyber Crime, Cyber War, propaganda, Russia
Last week the New York Times reported, Arctic’s Winter Sea Ice Drops to Its Lowest Recorded Level:
After a season that saw temperatures soar at the North Pole, the Arctic has less sea ice at winter’s end than ever before in nearly four decades of satellite measurements.
The extent of ice cover — a record low for the third straight year — is another indicator of the effects of global warming on the Arctic, a region that is among the hardest hit by climate change, scientists said.
“This is just another exclamation point on the overall loss of Arctic sea ice coverage that we’ve been seeing,” said Mark Serreze, the director of the National Snow and Ice Data Center, a government-backed research agency in Boulder, Colo. “We’re heading for summers with no sea ice coverage at all.”
Dr. Serreze said that such a situation, which would leave nothing but open ocean in summer until fall freeze-up begins, could occur by 2030, although many scientists say it may not happen for a decade or two after that.
Less ice coverage also means that there is more dark ocean to absorb more of the sun’s energy, which leads to more warming and melting in a feedback loop called Arctic amplification.
Posted in AZBlueMeanie, Congress, Conspiracy Theory, Courts, Energy, environment, GOP War On..., International, Party Politics, President, Science
Tagged climate change, climate change deniers, Climate Science, EPA, Executive Orders