Category Archives: Politics

03Nov/16
james-comey-fbi-political-firestorm

FBI Head James Comey Creates Political Firestorm

With the announcement he has decided to reopen the investigation into the use of a private server by Democrat Presidential candidate Hilary Clinton, FBI head James Comey has thrown himself into the middle of a political firestorm. The announcement comes but a few months after he declined to recommend the prosecution of Clinton because he felt no reasonable prosecutor would pursue charges.

At the time, Republicans were infuriated that he would come to the conclusion prosecution would be a waste of time after he admitted Clinton and her staff were “extremely careless” with the way they handled classified information. He also declined to initiate an investigation into the Clinton Foundation, even though there were signs of possible “pay for play” activities.

In recent weeks, the FBI has been investigating former Congressman Anthony Weiner related to concerns he was sexting a minor. During the investigation, the FBI seized the computers and mobile devices belonging to Weiner and his estranged wife Huma Abedin. It just so happens that Abedin is one of Clinton’s top aides and confidant. Without going into detail, Comey wrote a letter to key members of Congress about the fact he was reopening the investigation.

With this announcement, the Republicans have been elated and hopeful that justice may still rule the day regarding Clinton’s alleged dubious activities. On the other side of the isle, Clinton and the Democrat party are infuriated he would make such a decision public less than two weeks before the election. According to news reports, he even consulted with Attorney General Loretta Lynch about his decision, only to be warned he could be perceived as trying to influence the outcome of the election.

Regardless of his motivations, it seems clear that Comey and his people have seen something that would move them to place themselves in the middle of the election process. In time, the information will be released to the public. For now, there’s a lot of innuendo and doubt surrounding the entire election process here in 2016.

25Oct/16
philippines-duterte

What’s Up With The Philippines?

Prior to May’s election in the Philippines, the international community was choosing sides in the South China Sea conflict between Beijing on one side and The Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam on the other side. As staunch supporters of The Philippines, the United States, Australia and Great Britain had chimed in with their concerns.

It would seem that everything has changed on a dime. Keeping in mind that a tribunal at the Hague had already ruled that China was in violation of international law based on the claims it was making in the South China Sea region, it now appears The Philippines is ready to let Beijing off the hook. This is indicated by the Filipinos desire to partner up with the Chinese on a series of infrastructure deals designed to benefit the Filipino economy.

Newly elected Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is a self-professed communists. During the election cycle, he had strong words for the Chinese government, stating he would go so far as to ride a jet-ski into the China South Sea region and plant a flag where the Philippines was ruled to have legitimate claims. A little more than 100 days later, he has been on a junket to China that has landed in excess of $17 billion in loans and investment from the Chinese into The Philippines.

In conjunction with this newfound “partnership,” Duterte has also been bantering around anti-American rhetoric. For the past 70 years, there has been a strong military and economic alliance between the U.S. and the Filipinos. Apparently, Duterte has never been a big fan of what he claims is America’s mistreatment of his nation. Adding to his already negative attitude towards the U.S. was his anger over criticism leveled towards Duterte’s controversial “war on drugs” by U.S. President Barack Obama. In fact, things got a little personal when Duterte called Obama “the son of a whore” in his native tongue.

In the past few days, Duterte has tried to dial back the anti-American rhetoric and re-normalize relations between the two countries. It will be interesting to see how long that is going to last as Duterte now seeks to partner with Russia.

18Oct/16
wikileaks-waves-ahead-election

Wikileaks Making Waves Ahead of Election

With a little more than three weeks until the election, the Wikileaks organization has been sending out regular doses of hacked DNC emails related to Democrat Presidential candidate Hilary Clinton, and they aren’t painting a favorable picture of Clinton or the DNC.

While GOP Presidential candidate Donald Trump has been battling attacks on his character elated to his treatment of women, Clinton had opened up a bit of a lead in the polls. With that said, Wikileaks has begun delivery blow after blow to her campaign. The latest groups of emails from the DNC hacked server involve communications between John Podesta, Clinton Campaign Chairman, and key Clinton aides, including Attorney Cheryl Mills.

In one March 2015 communication between Podesta and Mills, Podesta questioned whether or not they should withhold emails between Clinton and President Barack Obama. The email was sent exactly one day after the House Benghazi Committee asked Mrs. Clinton to preserve all the emails on her private server. There were also discussions about how to frame or spin the breaking news that 15 previously deleted emails from Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal had been turned over to the FBI.

In another embarrassing exchange, a damaging string of emails between Podesta and Clinton Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri discussed the importance of keeping Clinton’s “back-room” deals hidden from the public. This same topic was discussed in leaked information related to Clinton speeches with Wall Street.

With all of this as well as other emails that seemed to criticize or mock the NAACP, Latinos and Christians, the Clinton campaign finds in constant damage-control mode as they address one issue after the other. The net effect has been a noticeable decrease in Clinton’s lead in the polls. The race is on to see which happens first: the mainstream media finds more dirt on Trump or Wikileaks releases emails that deliver a fatal blow to the Clinton campaign.

10Oct/16
audio-recording-donald-trump

11-Year Old Audio Recording Rocks Trump Campaign

With one candidate mired in one scandal after another and the other candidate dealing with a history of boorish behavior, the U.S. is involved in a nasty election cycle, the likes of which has never been seen before. In the latest news, an 11-year old audio segment of GOP Presidential candidate Donald Trump making lewd and chauvinistic statements about women has surfaced.

After details of his comments, which are too lewd to be reported here, were released, the backlash was swift and brutal. It has resulted in a number of key individuals, both GOP members and supporters denouncing the things he said with many of them going so far as to pull their support for his campaign.

In a effort to get out in front the situation and do damage control, Trump took to the airways to apologize for what he said. He even went so far as to try to let people know that is not who he is a person today.

Over Twitter, he released a video to all Americans. In the video, he said, “I’ve never said that I’m a perfect person, nor pretended to be someone that I’m not. I’ve said and done things that I regret, and the words released today on this more than a decade-old video are one of them.” He later added, “Anyone who knows me knows these words don’t reflect who I am,” he continues. “I said it, I was wrong, and I apologize.”

Because of his comments, the RNC is trying to find away to intervene and withdrawal their support for Trump as the party’s Presidential candidate. While Reince Priebus, the Republican National Committee chair, looks into the parties options, party leaders are calling on Trump to make apologies across the board and consider withdrawing from the race.

03Oct/16
clinton-wikileaks

Does A Wikileaks Dump Spell Doom for Clinton This Month?

In late August, Wikileaks head Julian Assange told Sean Hannity and Fox News viewers that his organization would be releasing vital information in October that could potentially derail Presidential nominee Hilary Clinton’s bid for the White House. After announcing earlier this week that he would be making a major announcement from the balcony of London’s Ecuadorian Embassy on October 4th, everyone assumed this was the bombshell the nation had been waiting for, some with dread.

This past weekend, Assange suddenly cancelled the announcement amid security concerns. The cancellation serves to create a mystery within a mystery. Prior hacked DNC email dumps have indeed provided damaging information related to the DNC’s favoring of Clinton and her campaign. This latest twist leaves people on both sides of the isle wondering what’s in the offering and when the message would be delivered. After the cancellation, no further information was provided related to whether or not the event was going to be rescheduled.

One can only imagine what Assange is privy to at this point in time. Over the past month, political pundits have been debating the potential effects of the information yet to be disclosed from the massive hacks into the DNC’s database. There are further concerns that some of the information yet to be released could have been derived from hacks perpetrated on Clinton’s infamous private email server.

While the Clinton campaign has been particularly quiet about Assange’s threats to continue releasing information, the camp of GOP Presidential nominee Donald Trump has done everything in its power to keep this threat front and center in the news. Conservatives have been pushing Assange’s group to get the information out ahead of the elections in November, assuming the information would indeed hurt Clinton’s falling numbers. According to Trump supporter Roger Stone, Hilary will be “done” once this information is released.

26Sep/16
obama-jasta

President Obama Says “No” to the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA)

It’s intended to stand as a new law that allows U.S. citizens to file lawsuits against foreign governments and foreign government officials for “injuries, death or damages stemming from an act of international terrorism.” The Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) is a bill written to accommodate individuals who suffer the loss of family members from events like 9/11.

Inexplicably, President Barack Obama has vetoed the bill because he felt it ““would neither protect Americans from terrorist attacks nor improve the effectiveness of our response to such attacks.” By that statement alone, it would seem the President is willing to set aside the pain caused by terrorist attacks in favor of being politically correct.

As a result of his veto, Congress is getting ready for it’s first real attempt to override one of President Obama’s vetoes. The battle in Congress is certainly going to be hotly contested as the country moves into the 2016 election cycle. This bill is very popular among U.S. citizens and the last thing a politician needs to do during an election cycle is be forced to vote down a popular bill.

As a reminder, the bill needs to get at least a two-thirds majority vote in both the House of Representative and the Senate in order to override the veto. At this point, it looks like there is a good chance of success for the passing of this bill. However, there is likely to be some political casualties from the process.

After word came down related to the President’s veto, both Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump expressed their disappointment over the decision and made claims that they would in fact sign the bill if it landed on their desk. Regardless of Clinton’s position, she faces possible kickback if the bill is killed because of her ties to Obama and his administration.

14Sep/16
negative-interest-rates-us-2017

Negative Interest Rates for the U.S. in 2017?

As the U.S. Federal Reserve contemplates its next move with interest rates, economists are starting to look well into the future to get an idea where the U.S. and world economies may be headed. Over the next couple of years, business and finance leaders will have a better idea regarding how Great Britain’s exit from the European Union is going to affect world financial operations.

Until then, it seems to be Fed Chairperson Janet Yellen’s job and responsibility to keep the U.S. economy moving the right direction. While the economic numbers have been good, not great, most investors and economists are predicting one or two small interest rate increases over the last quarter of the current fiscal year. Beyond that, the picture becomes a little more muddled.

It’s interesting to note that many business leaders are preparing for a possible recession by the end of 2017. What makes that such an interesting position to take is the depth of the current recovery has been lacking over the past two years. The prospect of a recession coming on top of a three-year long weak recovery could create some rather serious economic issues throughout the world.

In other local economies that have recently been facing a similar situation, negative interest rates have been used to create business activity and discourage saving. Some experts have intimated that Yellen has been investigating the legalities of implementing a Negative Interest Rate Policy (NIRP) in the U.S.

At the beginning of the year, Yellen mentioned she didn’t have the legal authority to use a NIRP. However, she did hire Marvin Goodfriend of Carnegie Mellon University, who gave a presentation about the nuances of NIRP to the Fed Reserve Board at a group session in Wyoming back in July. The hiring of a huge proponent of NIRP to give an important presentation would only make sense if the subject matter of the presentation was under serious consideration.

23Aug/16
Hilary Clinton Server questions

Clinton ordered to Answer Server Questions in Writing

After the department of Justice decided to not press for felony charges against Democrat Presidential nominee Hilary Clinton for the mishandling of top secret information, the conservative advocacy group Judicial Watch has been stepping up the pressure to get answers from Mrs. Clinton related to her use of a personal computer server.

Based on the group’s request related to its civil lawsuit against Mrs. Clinton, U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan has ordered her to answer the group’s question in writing in lieu of appearing in person at a deposition as requested. This allows her to continue her campaign without interruption from court proceedings.

Under the terms of the order, Judicial Watch’s attorneys have until October 14 to provide Mrs. Clinton with their written questions. Once the questions have been received, she will have 30 days to provide written answers under oath. It’s interesting to note that these deadlines fall precariously close to the November 8th elections.

From the Clinton campaign camp, all of this fuss is nothing more than an attempt by conservatives to embarrass Mrs. Clinton during the election process. According to Brian Fallon, a spokesman for Clinton’s campaign, “Judicial Watch is a right-wing organization that has been attacking the Clintons since the 1990s. This is just another lawsuit intended to try to hurt Hillary Clinton’s campaign.”

While these actions could certainly be considered political in nature, the fact remains that no one is clear as to why Mrs. Clinton chose to use a personal server and to what extent she exposed the country’s deepest domestic secrets to the scrutiny of outside parties.

It was just a couple of weeks ago that the State Deportment released previously unidentified emails from some of Clinton’s aides. A couple of these emails raised the possibility that Mrs. Clinton was using her political clout as Secretary of State to secure donations for the Clinton Foundation.