WATCH – Hundreds Join Pro-Trump Parade in Pennsylvania: ‘We’re Here to Make Noise’

Hundreds of President Donald Trump’s supporters joined a parade Sunday through Erie County, Pennsylvania.

“We remind ourselves that what we’re doing, it matters. What we’re doing is important, and that our country is gonna be better off if Trump is re-elected and that’s it,” Girard resident Jim Nolan told Your Erie.

The parade wound through North East, Fairview, Downtown Erie, and the Peninsula, according to the outlet.

“We want to make sure everybody knows in this town that the silent majority is not silent anymore. We’re here to make noise. It’s a big election. In my lifetime, this is the biggest one I can remember. So, we’re all excited and ready to go vote,” said organizer Brian Shank.

The parade was also dubbed a Back the Blue rally, according to Erie News Now.

“This day long event included merchandise tents, the parade and just coming together with others who think President Trump should stay in office,” the report said.

Participants later shared photos of the vehicles to the event’s Facebook page while another posted video of it on YouTube.

The footage showed cars and motorcycles flying American flags, Trump 2020 flags, and Thin Blue Line flags:

[embedded content]

So far, the Trump Train Erie Facebook page has 1,870 members.

One member thanked the organizers for putting on the event and said it was his first time to be involved in anything like it.

“Seeing all the flags and support for our country was very awe inspiring! And a big thanks to all the officers that took the time to help out during the route! God bless America! Trump 2020!!!!!!!!” he continued.

President Trump is expected to make an appearance at his rally in Erie County on Tuesday evening, according to Your Erie.

“This is like a perfect time for an event so we can just get everyone pumped up and excited that our President is coming to town in a couple days and set him up for re-election,” Shank concluded.

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Members Only – CNN Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin Shared His Penis During Zoom Call With Coworkers…

CNN senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin is apologizing to his family after sharing his penis with coworkers during a Zoom call.

Apparently Mr. Toobin was on a members only Zoom teleconference with The New Yorker and WYNC radio when he displayed his genitals to the audience.

The New Yorker has suspended Toobin, prompting apologies for his family:

(Vice News) The New Yorker has suspended reporter Jeffrey Toobin. Sources tell VICE it’s because he exposed himself during a Zoom call last week between members of the New Yorker and WNYC radio.

Toobin said in a statement to Motherboard: “I made an embarrassingly stupid mistake, believing I was off-camera. I apologize to my wife, family, friends and co-workers.”

“I believed I was not visible on Zoom. I thought no one on the Zoom call could see me. I thought I had muted the Zoom video,” he added.

New Yorker spokesperson Natalie Raabe said: “Jeffrey Toobin has been suspended while we investigate the matter.” (more)

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The Biden Campaign and China’s Oligarchs

In two bombshell reports, Emma-Jo Morris and Gabrielle Fonrouge of the New York Post have leveled damning allegations of Hunter Biden’s murky financial dealings with Ukrainian and Chinese oligarchs. As expected, $50,000 remuneration paid by Burisma Holdings of Ukraine annually for Hunter’s “consultancy job” was only the tip of the iceberg. Hunter was paid millions of dollars bribes that sustained his “rockstar lifestyle” over the years.

Although it was the first report [1] published on Thursday, October 14, and titled “Smoking-gun email reveals how Hunter Biden introduced Ukrainian businessman to VP dad” that gained most attention on the mainstream media, it was the second report [2] published on Friday, October 15, in which the authors have furnished documentary evidence of Hunter Biden’s  dealings, amounting to millions of dollars and stakes in equities and profits of a private Chinese oil company doing business in Africa, with a Chinese billionaire Ye Jianming that raises serious questions whether the loyalty of the Biden campaign to the American electorate has been compromised due to Hunter Biden’s illicit financial transactions with the representatives of the Chinese government.

Image on the right: CEFC’s founder Ye Jianming. Photo: SCMP/Handout

China detains CEFC's founder Ye Jianming, wiping out US$153 million in value off stocks | South China Morning Post

It’s noteworthy that the name of Ye Jianming came up in the Johnson-Grassley report released last month, too.

“The Suspicious Activity Reports of the Treasury Department flagged millions of dollars in transactions from the Ukrainian gas company Burisma Holdings, a Russian oligarch named Yelena Baturina, and a Chinese businessmen with ties to Beijing’s communist government,” the Senate report said.

The Johnson-Grassley report further alleged:

“Hunter Biden had business associations with Ye Jianming, Gongwen, and other Chinese nationals linked to the communist government and the People’s Liberation Army. Those associations resulted in millions of dollars in cash flow.”

Corroborating the Senate investigation, Emma-Jo Morris and Gabrielle Fonrouge noted in the second report of the New York Post:

“Another email — sent by Biden as part of an Aug. 2, 2017, chain — involved a deal he struck with the since-vanished chairman of CEFC, Ye Jianming, for half-ownership of a holding company that was expected to provide Biden with more than $10 million a year ‘for introductions alone.’

“’The chairman changed that deal after we me[t] in MIAMI TO A MUCH MORE LASTING AND LUCRATIVE ARRANGEMENT to create a holding company 50% percent [sic] owned by ME and 50% owned by him,’ Biden wrote.

“A photo dated Aug. 1, 2017, shows a handwritten flowchart of the ownership of ‘Hudson West’ split 50/50 between two entities ultimately controlled by Hunter Biden and someone identified as ‘Chairman.’

“According to a report on Biden’s overseas business dealings released last month by Sens. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), a company called Hudson West III opened a line of credit in September 2017.

“Biden’s email was sent to Gongwen Dong, whom the Wall Street Journal in October 2018 tied to the purchase by Ye-linked companies of two luxury Manhattan apartments that cost a total on $83 million.

“The documents obtained by The Post also include an ‘Attorney Engagement Letter’ executed in September 2017 in which one of Ye’s top lieutenants, former Hong Kong government official Chi Ping Patrick Ho, agreed to pay Biden a $1 million retainer for ‘Counsel to matters related to US law and advice pertaining to the hiring and legal analysis of any US Law Firm or Lawyer.’

“In December 2018, a Manhattan federal jury convicted Ho in two schemes to pay $3 million in bribes to high-ranking government officials in Africa for oil rights in Chad and lucrative business deals in Uganda. Ho served a three-year prison sentence and was deported to Hong Kong in June.”

According to a Washington Post report [3] in September:

“Ye Jianming had made inroads with Joe Biden’s brother James Biden, as well as Hunter Biden, as the Chinese tycoon sought to build influence in the United States. In early 2018, Hunter Biden was paid $1 million to represent Ye’s aide while he was facing the federal bribery charges in the United States.

“In August 2017, a subsidiary of Ye’s company wired $5 million into the bank account of a US company called Hudson West III, which over the next 13 months sent $4.79 million marked as consulting fees to Hunter Biden’s firm, the report said. Over the same period, Hunter Biden’s firm wired some $1.4 million to a firm associated with his uncle and aunt, James and Sara Biden.”

Ironically, it was the mainstream media that first broke the story of the illicit financial transactions between the Biden family and Chinese billionaire Ye Jianming in December 2018, though that was a year before Joe Biden was chosen as the Democratic presidential candidate in April.

Giving a detailed biographical account of Ye Jianming from his rapid ascent to a sudden fall from grace in 2017, as the FBI closed in on the Chinese billionaire’s company and aides, a December 2018 New York Times report [4] revealed:

“Ye Jianming, a fast-rising Chinese oil tycoon, ventured to places only the most politically connected Chinese companies dared to go. But what he wanted was access to the corridors of power in Washington — and he set out to get it.

“Soon, he was meeting with the family of Joseph R. Biden Jr., who was then the vice president. He dined with R. James Woolsey Jr., a former Central Intelligence Agency director and later a senior adviser to President Trump. He bestowed lavish funding on universities and think tanks with direct access to top Washington leaders, looking for the benefits access can bring.

“‘This is a guy who courted and maintained networks with the People’s Liberation Army and took the strategy of ‘friends in high places,’ said Jude Blanchette, a senior adviser and China head at Crumpton Group, a business intelligence firm.

“He seemed to have the blessings of Beijing. State banks offered CEFC billions of dollars in loans. The company also hired a large number of former military officers, whom Mr. Ye told visitors he prized for their organizational skills. He was deputy secretary of a Chinese military organization from 2003 to 2005 that congressional researchers called a front for the People’s Liberation Army unit that has ‘dual roles of intelligence collection and conducting People’s Republic of China propaganda.’

“From 2009 to 2017, CEFC’s revenue jumped from $48 million to $37 billion. [a time period incidentally coinciding with Joe Biden’s vice presidency.]

“‘It’s been clear for some time that this is not just a Chinese commercial company, that they had some intelligence ties,’ Mr. Martin Hala, an academic based in Prague, said. ‘People from the U.S. intelligence agencies should have known something was going on.’

“Five years ago, CEFC approached Bobby Ray Inman, a retired admiral and national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter, about setting up a joint venture, Mr. Inman said in an interview. The company promised it would pay him $1 million a year, without specifying what business they would go into. He turned down the offer.

“On a 2015 trip to the United States Ye met with Alan Greenspan, the former Federal Reserve chairman, to discuss the economy, according to CEFC.

“CEFC also donated at least $350,000 to the Institute for the Analysis of Global Security, a politically connected think tank, according to court testimony. The think tank counts Robert C. McFarlane, the Reagan-era national security adviser, as its president and Mr. Woolsey, a Clinton-era C.I.A. director, as its co-chairman.

“Mr. Ye also further loosened CEFC’s purse strings, donating as much as $100,000 to the Clinton Foundation. Outside the Beltway, a CEFC foundation donated at least $500,000 to a Columbia University research center.

“CEFC also organized forums in Hong Kong and Washington that brought together retired American and Chinese military officers, among other events.

“By 2015, Mr. Ye had begun working on perhaps his most politically connected quarry yet: the family of Mr. Biden, the vice president.

“An aide to Mr. Ye met the vice president’s second son, Hunter Biden, in Washington. Mr. Ye then met privately with Hunter Biden at a hotel in Miami in May 2017. Mr. Ye proposed a partnership to invest in American infrastructure and energy deals.

“During this period, the vice president’s son was managing Rosemont Seneca Partners, an investment firm he formed with Chris Heinz, the stepson of John Kerry, the former secretary of state.

“The trial and conviction in New York in December 2018 of one of his top lieutenants, Patrick Ho, showed that company officials used bribery to win oil and energy contracts in Africa.

“In 2017, as American authorities closed in on Mr. Ye’s company, the first call made by one of his emissaries in custody was to Mr. Biden’s brother.

“James Biden, a financier and brother of the former vice president, was in a hotel lobby in November 2017 when he got a surprise call on his cellphone. The call was from Patrick Ho, Mr. Ye’s lieutenant. Mr. Ho, 69, was in trouble.

“In a brief interview, James Biden said he had been surprised by Mr. Ho’s call. He said he believed it had been meant for Hunter Biden, the former vice president’s son. James Biden said he had passed on his nephew’s contact information.

“‘There is nothing else I have to say,’ James Biden said. ‘I don’t want to be dragged into this anymore.’

“Federal agents who had monitored CEFC’s rise since at least the summer of 2016 had sprung into action, arresting Mr. Ho in New York on allegations that he had bribed African officials in Chad and Uganda.

“Mr. Ye, meanwhile, has disappeared into the custody of the Chinese authorities. He was last seen in February, 2018, when his private jet touched down in the Chinese city of Hangzhou. CEFC is struggling under $15 billion in debt, and was dissolved early this year.”

After reading all this revelatory information regarding suspicious financial transactions between prominent former officials of the US government and the “disappeared” Chinese billionaire, it becomes abundantly clear that Ye Jianming, most likely a pseudonym, was a frontman for the Chinese government who was sent on a clandestine mission to nurture business relations with the Beltway elites, and later made to disappear after his cover was blown once his aides were charged with criminal offenses in the US courts.

China is known to follow the economic model of “state capitalism,” in which although small and medium enterprises are permitted to operate freely by common citizens, large industrial and extraction companies, especially a multi-billion dollar corporation the size of CEFC, are run by the Communist Party stalwarts masquerading as business executives.

In addition, China is alleged to practice “debt-trap diplomacy” for buying entire governments through extending financial grants and loans, and what better way to buy the rival government of the United States than by financing the Biden campaign through bestowing financial largesse on the profligate son of the former vice president and current presidential candidate.

Image below: Guo Wengui (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Guo Wengui - Wikipedia

Notwithstanding, in a tit-for-tat response to the New York Post’s explosive report alleging Hunter Biden introduced a top executive at a Ukrainian energy firm he was working for to his vice president dad, the Daily Beast came up with a scoop [5] on Friday, October 16, that the hard disks in which Hunter’s emails were found were provided to Rudy Giuliani by a Chinese billionaire Guo Wengui on behalf of dissident members of the Chinese Communist Party.

According to the report,

“Weeks before the New York Post began publishing what it claimed were the contents of Hunter Biden’s hard drive, a Sept. 25 segment on a YouTube channel run by a Chinese dissident streamer, who is linked to billionaire and Steve Bannon-backer Guo Wengui, broadcast a bizarre conspiracy theory.

“According to the streamer, Chinese politburo officials had ‘sent three hard disks of evidence’ to the Justice Department and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi containing damaging information about Joe Biden as well as the origins of the coronavirus in a bid to undermine the rule of Chinese President Xi Jinping …

“While Guo’s ties to Steve Bannon have long been known—Bannon was arrested for defrauding donors in August on a 152-foot-long yacht reportedly owned by Guo—the billionaire appears to have also joined forces with Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani in the former New York mayor’s relentless anti-Biden dirt-digging crusade.”

Besides posting pictures of Rudy Giuliani and Guo Wengui “cavorting and smoking cigars together” and leveling unsubstantiated allegations that Giuliani has stakes in Guo’s fashion lineup, the Daily Beast hasn’t challenged the authenticity of Hunter’s emails but only questioned the source of origin of hard disks containing irrefutable evidence of the Biden family’s murky financial dealings and made a paradoxical claim that dissident members of Chinese Communist Party are trying to sabotage Joe Biden’s electoral campaign on Trump’s behalf.

Nevertheless, the report raises startling questions that why Chinese dissidents would form “a government-in-exile” in the United States and allegedly support the Trump campaign against Joe Biden’s bid for the presidency unless the Biden campaign had received financial support from the government of People’s Republic of China whom the Chinese dissidents want to subvert.

The report further alleges:

“Guo Wengui has been in the Trumpworld orbit pretty much from the beginning, paying the $200,000 initiation fee to become a member of the president’s Florida golf resort Mar-a-Lago, which Trump has dubbed the ‘Southern White House.’ But Guo’s membership soon became a headache for the administration in the run-up to Trump’s first summit meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2017, due to Guo’s fugitive status in China.

“At one point, Trump had reportedly considered deporting Guo after the Chinese government called for his extradition in a letter delivered to Trump by casino mogul Steve Wynn in 2017. After presenting the letter during a policy meeting, the president reportedly said, ‘We need to get this criminal out of the country,’ only for aides to remind him that Guo was a Mar-a-Lago member, eventually talking him out of the decision and ensuring the deportation was scuttled …

“Guo has framed himself as a stalwart critic of the CCP and China’s corrupt elite, but his efforts have divided China’s exile community. Guo has enthusiastically attacked other critics of Beijing as jealous poseurs, including most recently a Texas Christian pastor and Tiananmen protester named Bob Fu—who was imprisoned in China for his faith before escaping to the U.S.—whom Guo accuses of being a secret agent for the CCP. Fu has lobbed the same charge back at Guo and his followers.”

Instead of debunking Trump’s witty remarks following the publishing of Hunter Biden’s emails that “the Biden family treated the vice presidency as a for-profit corporation,” the information contained in the Daily Beast article lends further credence to the investigative reporting by Emma-Jo Morris and Gabrielle Fonrouge for the New York Post exposing Hunter Biden’s sleazy financial dealings with Ukrainian and Chinese oligarchs.

In an exclusive report [6] for the Breitbart New on Friday, October 16, Peter Schweizer and Seamus Bruner allege that newly obtained emails from a former business associate of Hunter Biden’s inner-circle reveal that Hunter and his colleagues used their access to the Obama administration to peddle influence to potential Chinese clients and investors—including securing a private, off-the-books meeting with the former vice president.

The never-before-revealed emails, unconnected to the Hunter Biden emails being released by the New York Post, were provided to Schweizer by Bevan Cooney, a one-time Hunter Biden and Devon Archer business associate. Cooney is currently in prison serving a sentence for his involvement in a 2016 bond fraud investment scheme.

Cooney believes he was the “fall guy” for an investment scheme in which Hunter and business associate Devon Archer avoided responsibility. He reached out to Schweizer after the journalist published a book “Secret Empires” in 2018. Archer was initially spared jail and handed a second trial, however, a federal appeals court reinstated Archer’s fraud conviction in the case last week.

The report notes:

“On November 5, 2011, one of Archer’s business contacts forwarded him an email teasing an opportunity to gain ‘potentially outstanding new clients’ by helping to arrange White House meetings for a group of Chinese executives and government officials.

“The group was the China Entrepreneur Club (CEC) and the delegation included Chinese billionaires, Chinese Communist Party loyalists, and at least one ‘respected diplomat’ from Beijing. Despite its benign name, CEC has been called ‘a second foreign ministry’ for the People’s Republic of China—a communist government that closely controls most businesses in its country. CEC was established in 2006 by a group of businessmen and Chinese government diplomats.

“CEC’s leadership boasts numerous senior members of the Chinese Communist Party, including Wang Zhongyu (vice chairman of the 10th CPPCC National Committee and deputy secretary of the Party group), Ma Weihua (director of multiple Chinese Communist Party offices), and Jiang Xipei (member of the Chinese Communist Party and representative of the 16th National Congress), among others.

“‘I know it is political season and people are hesitant but a group like this does not come along every day,’ an intermediary named Mohamed A. Khashoggi wrote on behalf of the CEC to an associate of Hunter Biden and Devon Archer. ‘A tour of the white house and a meeting with a member of the chief of staff’s office and John Kerry would be great.’

“The email boasted of CEC’s wealthy membership: CEC’s current membership includes 50 preeminent figures such as: Liu Chuanzhi, Chairman of the CEC, Legend Holdings and Lenovo Group; Wu Jinglian, Zhang Weiying, and Zhou Qiren, China’s esteemed economists; Wu Jianmin, respected diplomat; Long Yongtu, representative of China’s globalization; Wang Shi (Vanke); Ma Weihua (China Merchants Bank); Jack Ma (Alibaba Group); Guo Guangchang (Fosun Group); Wang Jianlin, (Wanda Group); Niu Gensheng (LAONIU Foundation); Li Shufu (Geely); Li Dongsheng (TCL Corporation); Feng Lun (Vantone) and etc.

“The gross income of the CEC members’ companies allegedly ‘totaled more than RMB 1.5 trillion, together accounting for roughly 4% of China’s GDP.’ The overture to Hunter Biden’s associates described the Chinese CEC members variously as

‘industrial elites,’ ‘highly influential,’ and among ‘the most important private sector individuals in China today,’ dubbed as the China Inc.

“Hunter Biden and Devon Archer apparently delivered for the Chinese Communist Party-connected industrial elites within ten days … The Obama-Biden Administration archives reveal that this Chinese delegation did indeed visit the White House on November 14, 2011, and enjoyed high-level access.

“The visitor logs list Jeff Zients, the deputy director of Obama’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB), as the host of the CEC delegation. Obama had tasked Zients with restructuring and ultimately consolidating the various export-import agencies under the Commerce Department—an effort in which the Chinese delegation would have a keen interest.

“Curiously, the Obama-Biden visitor logs do not mention any meeting with Vice President Joe Biden. But the Vice President’s off-the-books meeting was revealed by one of the core founders of the CEC. In an obscure document listing the CEC members’ biographies, CEC Secretary General Maggie Cheng alleges that she facilitated the CEC delegation meetings in Washington in 2011 and boasts of the Washington establishment figures that CEC met with. The first name she dropped was that of Vice President Joe Biden.”

Schweizer suggests that the meeting may have opened the door for Hunter and Devon Archer down the road—as just two years later they formed the Chinese government-funded Bohai Harvest RST (BHR) investment fund which saw Chinese money pour into it for investments in CEC-linked businesses.

According to the report,

“One of BHR’s first major portfolio investments was a ride-sharing company like Uber called Didi Dache—now called Didi Chuxing Technology Co. That company is closely connected to Liu Chuanzhi, the chairman of the China Entrepreneur Club (CEC) and the founder of Legend Holdings—the parent company of Lenovo, one of the world’s largest computer companies. Liu is a former Chinese Communist Party delegate and was a leader of the 2011 CEC delegation to the White House. His daughter was the President of Didi.”

The report adds:

“Liu has long been involved in CCP politics, including serving as a representative to the 9th, 10th, and 11th sessions of the National People’s Congress of the PRC and as a representative to the 16th and 17th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party. Liu was the Vice Chairman of the 8th and 9th Executive Committee of All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce (ACFIC), an organization known to be affiliated with the Chinese United Front.”

After reading the names of these high-profile Chinese business and political elites visiting the White House and cultivating personal friendships and commercial relationships in the highest echelons of the Obama-Biden administration, one wonders whether the latter devised trade and economic policies serving the interests of the American masses or took care of financial stakes of global power elites.

With his anti-globalist and protectionist agenda, Trump represents a paradigm shift in the global economic order. Trump withdrawing the United States from multilateral treaties, restructuring trade agreements and initiating a trade war against China are a revolution against globalization and free trade of which China is the new beneficiary with its strong manufacturing base and massive export potential.

Thus, it’s only natural for the Chinese government to be “anti-Trump”, while supporting his neoliberal Democratic rivals, who favor globalization and free trade, in the upcoming US presidential elections.

*

Note to readers: please click the share buttons above or below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

Nauman Sadiq is an Islamabad-based attorney, columnist and geopolitical analyst focused on the politics of Af-Pak and Middle East regions, neocolonialism and petro-imperialism. He is a regular contributor to Global Research.

Notes

[1] Chinese Billionaire’s Network Hyped Hunter Biden Dirt Weeks Before Rudy.

https://www.thedailybeast.com/chinese-billionaires-network-hyped-hunter-biden-dirt-weeks-before-rudy?ref=home

[2] Smoking-gun email reveals how Hunter Biden introduced Ukrainian businessman to VP dad:

https://nypost.com/2020/10/14/email-reveals-how-hunter-biden-introduced-ukrainian-biz-man-to-dad/

[3] GOP senators’ report calls Hunter Biden’s board position with Ukraine firm ‘problematic’:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/senate-gop-report-calls-hunter-bidens-board-position-problematic-but-offers-few-specific-examples-it-changed-obama-administration-policy/2020/09/23/4b66d41e-fd44-11ea-9ceb-061d646d9c67_story.html

[4] Ye Jianming, Chinese oil tycoon, had business relations with James and Hunter Biden:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/12/business/cefc-biden-china-washington-ye-jianming.html

[5] Chinese Billionaire’s Network Hyped Hunter Biden Dirt Weeks Before Rudy.

https://www.thedailybeast.com/chinese-billionaires-network-hyped-hunter-biden-dirt-weeks-before-rudy?ref=home

[6] Emails Reveal Hunter Biden’s Associates Helped Communist-Aligned Chinese Elites Secure White House Meetings:

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020/10/16/exclusive-this-is-china-inc-emails-reveal-hunter-bidens-associates-helped-communist-aligned-chinese-elites-secure-white-house-meetings/

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The New Yorker Suspends Jeffrey Toobin for Masturbating on Zoom

The New Yorker suspended reporter Jeffrey Toobin after he was caught masturbating during a Zoom call last week with New Yorker and WNYC radio members, according to a report.

VICE reports:

Two people who were on the call told VICE separately that the call was an election simulation featuring many of the New Yorker’s biggest stars: Jane Mayer was playing establishment Republicans; Evan Osnos was Joe Biden, Jelani Cobb was establishment Democrats, Masha Gessen played Donald Trump, Andrew Marantz was the far right, Sue Halpern was left wing democrats, Dexter Filkins was the military, and Jeffrey Toobin playing the courts. There were also a handful of other producers on the call from the New Yorker and WNYC.

Both people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to speak freely, noted that it was unclear how much each person saw, but both said that they saw Toobin jerking off.

Natalie Raabe, a press representative for the New Yorker, confirmed Toobin has been suspended but did not explicitly state the reason behind the decision.

“Jeffrey Toobin has been suspended while we investigate the matter,” Raabe said.

Additionally, the New Yorker editor David Remnick wrote in a memo to all staffers: “Dear All, As you may have read in various news reports today, one of our writers, Jeff Toobin, was suspended after an incident on a Zoom call last week. Please be assured that we take such matters seriously and that we are looking into it. Best, David.”

Toobin seemingly confirmed that exposing himself was the motivation behind the suspension, though he claimed it was merely an accident.

“I made an embarrassingly stupid mistake, believing I was off-camera. I apologize to my wife, family, friends, and co-workers,” he told Motherboard in a statement.

Toobin is also the chief legal analyst for CNN and reportedly appeared on the network Saturday. A CNN spokesperson told Law&Crime that Toobin has requested “some time off while he deals with a personal issue, which we have granted.”

Source

People Need to Reclaim the Internet

No matter how much you dislike Trump, only a fool can fail to see the implications for public access to information of the massive suppression on the internet of the Hunter Biden leaks.

This blog has been suffering a ratcheting of social media suppression for years, which reached its apogee in my coverage of the Julian Assange trial. As I reported on 24 September:

Even my blog has never been so systematically subject to shadowbanning from Twitter and Facebook as now. Normally about 50% of my blog readers arrive from Twitter and 40% from Facebook. During the trial it has been 3% from Twitter and 9% from Facebook. That is a fall from 90% to 12%. In the February hearings Facebook and Twitter were between them sending me over 200,000 readers a day. Now they are between them sending me 3,000 readers a day. To be plain that is very much less than my normal daily traffic from them just in ordinary times. It is the insidious nature of this censorship that is especially sinister – people believe they have successfully shared my articles on Twitter and Facebook, while those corporations hide from them that in fact it went into nobody’s timeline. My own family have not been getting their notifications of my posts on either platform.

It was not just me: everyone reporting the Assange trial on social media suffered the same effect. Wikileaks, which has 5.6 million Twitter followers, were obtaining about the same number of Twitter “impressions” of their tweets (ie number who saw them) as I was. I spoke with several of the major US independent news sites and they all reported the same.

I have written before about the great danger to internet freedom from the fact that a few massively dominant social media corporations – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram – have become in effect the “gatekeepers” to internet traffic. In the Assange hearing and Hunter Biden cases we see perhaps the first overt use of that coordinated power to control public information worldwide.

The way the power of the “gatekeepers” is used normally is insidious. It is quite deliberately disguised. “Shadow banning” is a term for a technique which has many variations. The net result is always that the post is not ostensibly banned. Some people see it, so that if the subject of the suppression claims to be banned they look stupid. But it is in fact shown to far, far less people than it would normally be. So even members of my own immediate family find that my posts no longer turn up in their timeline on either Facebook or Twitter. But a few followers, presumably at random, do see them. Generally, though not always, those followers are apparently able to retweet or share, but what they are not told is that their retweet or share is in fact put in to very, very few people’s timelines. The overall audience for the Tweet or Facebook post is cut to as little as 1% of what it might be without suppression. As 90% of the traffic to this blog comes in clicks from these social media posts, the effect is massive.

That was the technique used on the Assange hearing. In normal times, the ratchet on traffic can be screwed down or released a little, from week to week or post to post.

In the Hunter Biden case, social media went still further and without disguise simply banned all mention of the Hunter Biden leaks.

As I reported on September 27 last year:

What I find deeply reprehensible in all the BBC coverage is their failure to report the facts of the case, and their utter lack of curiosity about why Joe Biden’s son Hunter was paid $60,000 a month by Burisma, Ukraine’s largest natural gas producer, as an entirely absent non-executive director, when he had no relevant experience in Ukraine or gas, and very little business experience, having just been dishonorably discharged from the Navy Reserve for use of crack cocaine? Is that question not just a little bit interesting? That may be the thin end of it – in 2014-15 Hunter Biden received US $850,000 from the intermediary company channeling the payments. In reporting on Trump being potentially impeached for asking about it, might you not expect some analysis – or at least mention – of what he was asking about?

That Hunter Biden received so much money from a company he never once visited or did any legitimate work for, located in a country which remarkably at the same time launched into a US sponsored civil war while his father was Vice President, is a question which might reasonably interest people. This is not “fake news”. There is no doubt whatsoever of the facts. There
is also no doubt that, as Vice President of the USA, Joe Biden secured the firing of the Ukrainian prosecutor who was investigating Burisma for corruption.

The story now is that Hunter Biden abandoned a laptop in a repair shop, and the hard drive contained emails between Hunter and Burisma in which he was asked for, and promised, various assistance to the company from the Vice President. This hard drive was passed to the New York Post. What the emails do not include is any incriminating correspondence between Hunter and his father in which Joe Biden agrees to any of this – which speaks to their authenticity, as that would be the key thing to forge. Given that the hard drive also contains intimate photos and video, there does not seem to be any real doubt about its authenticity.

However both Facebook and Twitter slapped an immediate and total ban on all mention of the Hunter Biden emails, claiming doubts as to its authenticity and an astonishing claim that they never link to leaked material or information about leaked material.

Alert readers will note that this policy was not applied to Donald Trump’s tax returns. These were extremely widely publicised throughout social and mainstream media – and quite right too – despite being illegally leaked. Twitter may be attempting to draw a distinction between a “hack” and a “leak”. This is difficult to do – the Clinton and Podesta emails, for example, were leaked but are frequently claimed to have been hacked.

I am astonished by the online comment of people who consider themselves “liberals” who support the social media suppression of the Hunter Biden story, because they want Trump to be defeated. The truth is that those in control of social media censorship are overwhelmingly Atlanticist figures on the Clinton/Blair political spectrum. That embraces the roles of Nick Clegg and Ben Nimmo at Facebook. It explains the protective attitude of Blairite Wikipedia boss Jimmy Wales (also a director of Guardian Media Group) toward the Philip Cross operation.

Censorship from the self-satisfied centre of the political establishment is still more dangerous, because more stable, than censorship from the left or right. It seeks rigorously to enforce the “Overton window” on social media. It has a “whatever it takes” attitude to getting Joe Biden into the White House and removing a maverick element from the political stability it so prizes. Its hatred of public knowledge is behind the persecution of Assange.

The Establishment’s problem is that inequalities of wealth are now so extreme in Western society, that the attempted removal of access by the public to radical thinking is not protecting a stable society, but is protecting a society tilting towards structural instability, in which the lack of job security and decent conditions and pay for large swathes of the population contrasts vividly with the spectacularly flourishing fortunes of the ultra billionaires. Our society desperately needs thinking outside the box into which the social media gatekeepers are attempting to confine us.

An early part of that thinking out of the box needs to relate to internet architecture and finding a way that the social media gatekeepers can be bypassed – not by a few activists, but by the bulk of the population. We used to say the internet will always find a work-around, and there are optimists who believe that the kind of censorship we saw over Hunter Biden will lead to a flight to alternative platforms, but I don’t see that happening on the scale required. Regulation to prevent censorship is improbable – governments are much more interested in regulation to impose more censorship.

The development of social media gatekeeping of internet traffic is one of the key socio-political issues of our time. We need the original founders of the internet to get together with figures like Richard Stallman and – vitally – Julian Assange – to find a way we break free from this. Ten years ago I would not have thought it a danger that the internet would become a method of political control, not of political freedom. I now worry it is too late to avert the danger.

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No Arrests Made After Violent Antifa Attack Hospitalizes Pro-Free Speech Demonstrators In San Fransisco

A pro-free speech, pro-Trump, and pro-police demonstration turned violent at United Nations Plaza in San Francisco over the weekend when a group of several hundred so-called anti-fascists began attacking and throwing projectiles at protestors and police. Despite multiple attacks caught on camera, no arrests were made.

The protest, organized by “Team Save America” and Philip Anderson, was intended to “protest Twitter which it said squelches conservative speech.” Those who attended the protest in the name of free speech also expressed support for President Donald Trump and the police by wearing “Make America Great Again” hats and waving “Thin Blue Line” and U.S. flags.

The protest began peacefully, but as Anderson mounted the stage to begin his speech, anti-fascists dressed in black “surged the area, outnumbering and attacking those gathered,” according the Associated Press. They also began throwing plastic and glass bottles at the pro-police Trump supporters.

Among those injured was Anderson, who suffered a knocked-out tooth from Antifa who attacked him “for no reason,” a Trump supporter, and at least three San Francisco police officers who were assaulted and injured with pepper spray and caustic chemicals. Multiple people were taken to the hospital.

During the attack on Anderson, people can be heard screaming “pray about it” and yelling racial expletives as he walks away holding his mouth.

According to the Associated Press, Anderson said he “called the counterprotesters hypocrites and said they are the reason why he’s voting for President Donald Trump.”

“I love America, I love this country, and I love free speech,” he said.

The San Francisco Police Department’s response to these attacks looked drastically different compared to Phoenix law enforcement responding to a similar protest Saturday. AZ Central reports that nearly every attendee of a protest against police in downtown Phoenix was arrested “after police say the group marched in the road, knocked barricades into the road, and threw smoke bombs at officers.”

Eighteen people were arrested and were facing charges “including aggravated assault on an officer, riot, criminal damage, unlawful assembly, hindering prosecution, resisting arrest, and obstructing a road.”

The riot was first announced on social media, but only 30 minutes after it began, it was declared an unlawful assembly as protestors threw devices emitting smoke at officers.

“Phoenix PD underestimates the power of the people. March with us to occupy Washington Street and remind PD who they serve. We will not stay silent. Until we get justice, Phoenix will have no peace,” the digital flyers advertising the event stated.

Phoenix Police Department spokesperson Sgt. Ann Justus said that it was “due to the ongoing criminal activity and assault, the Phoenix Police deployed less-lethal munitions in order to safely make arrests.”

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Pennsylvania Poll: Joe Biden’s Lead Narrows to Just 1.1%

Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden and President Donald Trump are statistically tied in Pennsylvania, a Restoration PAC/Trafalgar Group survey released Monday — nearly two weeks out from the presidential election — revealed.

The survey, taken October 13-15 among 1,041 likely voters, showed Trump narrowing the gap in Pennsylvania, with Biden leading by just 1.1 percent — 47.5 percent to the president’s 46.4 percent. As has been the emerging theme in several recent surveys in key Rust Belt states, Biden’s lead is within the margin of error, which is +/- 2.96 percent.

“The poll included only one day of the existence of explosive new emails showing Hunter Biden cashing in big from foreign sources during his father’s tenure as Vice President,” according to the press release.

“It looks like the race is essentially tied across the important upper Midwestern swing states” Restoration PAC founder and President Doug Truax said in a statement.

“We believe President Trump has the stronger message down the stretch that will tip the balance his way,” Truax added.

The conservative super PAC hired Trafalgar Group in the final months leading up to the election “to complete polling through the November election in the crucial swing states of Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin.”

RealClearPolitics co-founder and President Tom Bevan has referred to Trafalgar Group as “one of the most accurate polling operations in America” following its successful predictions in both the 2016 and 2018 elections.

This poll signals that Trump is, indeed, closing the gap in the Keystone State as the election nears. A Trafalgar Group survey released last week showed Biden leading Trump in Pennsylvania by 2.3 percent — a greater lead than Monday’s survey shows, but still within the poll’s margin of error.

Other recent surveys, including last week’s Insider Advantage/Center for American Greatness survey, also show the two candidates statistically tied in Pennsylvania.

Trump secured Pennsylvania in 2016, despite the final RCP polling average projecting Hillary Clinton up by 2.1 percent. RCP’s Monday average showed Biden leading by 4.4. percent.

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President Trump Make America Great Again Rally – Prescott, Arizona – 3:00pm ET Livestream…

President Donald J. Trump holds a Make America Great Again rally at Prescott Regional Airport in Prescott, Arizona. The anticipated start time is 12:00pm MST / 3:00pm EDT – [Livestream Links Below]

Trump Campaign LivestreamRSBN Livestream LinkFox Business Livestream

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Joe Biden’s Transition Co-Chair Hosted Hunter Biden-Linked Chinese Elites at Obama White House

The co-chair of Joe Biden’s transition team hosted a select group of Chinese business and political elites at the Obama-era White House after prodding from Hunter Biden’s business associates.

In November 2011, Jeff Zients, then-deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), hosted the Chinese Entrepreneur Club (CEC) for a special meeting at the White House. The CEC, founded in 2006 and often referred to as the “richest club” in the People’s Republic of China, counts among its members some of the richest and most influential personalities in Chinese society.

At the time, the meeting did not draw much attention. However, emails published this week by Peter Schweizer, a senior contributor at Breitbart News and president of the Government Accountability Institute, indicated just how important of a role Hunter Biden and his business associates, including Devon Archer, played in making the White House visit happen.

The emails showed that on November 5, 2011, a colleague of Archer’s reached out to suggest there was an opportunity to gain “outstanding new clients.” According to the email, copies of which were published exclusively by Breitbart News, the colleague told Archer that the CEC had been trying for some time to arrange meetings with high-ranking Obama administration officials when they visited Washington, DC, in mid-November.

“A tour of the White House and a meeting with a member of the chief of staff’s office and [then-Secretary of State] John Kerry would be great,” the colleague wrote.

Up to that point, the CEC had tried and failed to obtain access to the Obama administration.

“From the DC side as you will see below they [CEC] have written letters to several members of the administration and others and have so far not had a strong reaction,” the colleague wrote Archer.

Archer discussed the CEC’s request with two other associates, Gary Fears and Bevan Cooney. Fears, in particular, told Archer to follow-up on the request since the CEC delegation could be “perfect” for a fertilizer mining venture the trio was then pursuing.

Although it is unclear exactly what transpired after the emails reached Archer, only nine days later, on November 14, 2011, the CEC had secured its meeting at the Obama White House. Administration records indicate that a delegation of 30 CEC members received a tour of the White House and met with then-Commerce Secretary John Bryson.

The delegation also, according to its members, met privately with Hunter Biden’s father, then-Vice President Joe Biden. At the time, the vice president was playing a leading role in the Obama administration’s policy towards Beijing. Just that past May, Biden had taken part in talks between the U.S. and China on how to improve “strategic and economic” relations.

Exactly how Archer and his associates arranged the meeting for the CEC is unknown. Visitor logs, though, show that Zients, who was in charge of restructuring the administration’s trade agencies, was the official host for the CEC delegation. It is likely that any arrangement made by Hunter Biden or associates ran through him or the OMB.

After the meeting, Zients would go on to be promoted to acting director of OMB after his superior Jack Lew ascended to the position of White House Chief of Staff. In March 2014, Zients was appointed to lead the National Economic Council, a position he held until Obama left office in 2017.

Since leaving office, Zients appears to have kept in close contact with the Bidens. In September, Biden appointed him to co-chair the presidential transition task force, which will be responsible for staffing a potential Biden White House.

The former vice president’s campaign did not respond to requests for this story.

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DNI John Ratcliffe: Hunter Biden Laptop/Pictures/Emails “Not Part of Russian Disinformation Campaign”…

Director of National Intelligence (DNI) John Ratcliffe appears on Fox Business News in an attempt to stop the false narrative that information coming from the laptop of Hunter Biden is a ‘Russian disinformation campaign.’

Ratcliffe explains the FBI is not approaching the evidence from a position of Russian involvement, and all the material discussed in the media so far has nothing to do with any Russian effort.  The disinformation campaign is from Democrats and the media.

Additionally, as it relates to the Biden material, DNI Ratcliffe states: “we haven’t shared any intelligence with Representative Adam Schiff or any member of Congress.”

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