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The Pentagon & DHS: Too Big To Jail

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Friday was a great day for justice. A corrupt mayor, who had been getting public money from the city he was suppose to work for, got busted. According to the ABC News:

“Federal prosecutors today announced a 21-count indictment against former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, accused of enriching himself as the city struggled to rebuild in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Nagin is accused of using the office of mayor to steer city projects to business associates who, in turn, allegedly paid kickbacks and bribes and flew him on lavish free trips to Hawaii, Jamaica, and Las Vegas. Nagin was charged with bribery, honest service wire fraud, money laundering, conspiracy and filing false tax returns.”

So does this teach us that crime doesn’t pay? Close. It teaches you that crime doesn’t pay if you are a mere local politician. But if you are the Pentagon, the rules are entirely different.

“The Government Accountability Office said Thursday that it could not complete an audit of the federal government, pointing to serious problems with the Department of Defense… ‘The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) cannot render an opinion on the 2012 consolidated financial statements of the federal government because of widespread material internal control weaknesses, significant uncertainties, and other limitations,” the agency said. ‘As was the case in 2011, the main obstacles to a GAO opinion on the accrual-based consolidated financial statements were: Serious financial management problems at the Department of Defense (DOD) that made its financial statements unauditable. The federal government’s inability to adequately account for and reconcile intragovernmental activity and balances between federal agencies. The federal government’s ineffective process for preparing the consolidated financial statements.’”

Now, I’ll grant, this report doesn’t a list of people who lined their pockets. But don’t be fooled. The fact that the books can’t be reconciled is because money went into secret places. This wasn’t lost in the couch; it lined someone’s pockets. For two years in a row now, the military has not been able to present financial statements that can be audited.
Let’s remember, this goes way back. The day before 9-11-2001, the Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld announced that the Defense budget had lost $2.3 trillion. He called it “a matter of life and death,” but no one saw it that way the next day. The problem seemed to only get worse through the following years.
Furthermore, now it is not just the Pentagon. The Department of Homeland Security is copying the Pentagon’s procedure:

“Along with the Pentagon, the GAO cited the Department of Homeland Security as having problems so significant that it was impossible for investigators to audit it. The DHS got a qualified audit for fiscal year 2012, and is seeking an unqualified audit for 2013. The report released by the GAO on Friday indicates serious accounting problems at two of the largest government agencies: the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security. The Department of Defense has a net cost of $799.1 billion to the federal budget, while the Department of Homeland Security has a net cost of $48.7 billion.”

So, when you see small politicians prosecuted by a Federal Agency, you can be happy that they didn’t get away with it. But you can also be pretty sure that some much bigger crime is being overlooked.
Once you get higher up the Federal food chain, the crooks are too big to jail.

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SWAT Team Raids Texas Bar, Makes Arrests After Owner Defied Government Orders

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Ector County Sheriff Mike Griffis said during a news conference that the owner of Big Daddy Zane’s opened her business even though Gov. Abbott explicitly mandated that bars remain closed.

When police arrived they found six men in body armor and armed with rifles standing outside the establishment.

“This was not a protest of their second amendment rights. It was a show of force to ensure this lady could violate the governor’s order,” Griffis told reporters.

The owner along with the seven armed men were arrested.

Texas AG Paxton called for the release of a jailed hair salon owner who reopened her shop despite state orders, and issued a blistering rebuke of a judge’s apparent political “stunt.”

“The trial judge did not need to lock up Shelley Luther,” Paxton wrote, according to NBC DFW. “His order is a shameful abuse of judicial discretion, which seems like another political stunt in Dallas.”

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President Trump Signs Anti-Robocall Legislation Into Law

Now, what am I going to do about my expired automobile warranty?

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The White House announced on Monday that President Donald Trump had signed S. 151, the Pallone-Thune TRACED Act, which will prevent criminal robocalls.

The White House:

This historic legislation will provide American consumers with even greater protection against annoying unsolicited robocalls. American families deserve control over their communications, and this legislation will update our laws and regulations to stiffen penalties, increase transparency, and enhance government collaboration to stop unwanted solicitation. President Donald J. Trump is proud to have worked with Congress to get this bipartisan legislation to his desk, and even prouder to sign it into law today.

The FTC explained: “A robocall trying to sell you something is illegal unless a company has your written permission to call you that way. To get your permission, the company has to be clear it’s asking to call you with robocalls, and it can’t make you agree to the calls to get a product or service. If you give permission, you have the right to change your mind later.”

Senator John Thune:

I have yet to meet someone who says they enjoy receiving those unwanted and illegal robocalls that plague our phones, whether we’re at home, at work, or in the car, which is why the TRACED Act takes several important steps in the fight to curb this scourge.  This bill represents a unique legislative effort that is not only bipartisan at its core, but it’s nearly unanimously supported in Congress. Most importantly, this is a significant win for consumers in every corner of the country, and it finally and officially puts illegal robocallers on notice. While no process is perfect, I’m glad we were able to work together with Republicans and Democrats, senators and members of the House to reach this important compromise, which, once signed into law, will begin to make an important down payment on the fight against illegal robocalls.”

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Muslim Woman Awarded $120,000 After Police Removed Her Hijab For Mugshot

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A Muslim woman in Minnesota who was allegedly forced to remove her hijab for mugshot gets a $120,000 settlement.

In 2013, Aida Shyef Al-Kadi turned herself in after a warrant was issued for her arrest because of a missed court hearing over a traffic ticket. She described her treatment in custody as “one of the most humiliating and harmful experiences” of her life.

Washington Examiner:

A court awarded a Muslim woman a $120,000 settlement after police forced her to remove her hijab in front of male jailers for a mugshot in 2013.

Aida Shyef Al Kadi, who was born in Ohio and moved to Minnesota so her child could receive special medical care, was arrested after a judge issued a warrant for Al Kadi because she failed to appear in court for a traffic violation. After turning herself in, Al Kadi was ordered to remove her hijab and abaya, a dress that covers the body, in front of male jailers at the Ramsey County jail.

U.S. District Court Judge John Tunheim awarded the settlement last week after Al Kadi sued Ramsey County for violating her constitutional rights and appeared with lawyers at the Minnesota headquarters of the Council on American-Islamic Relations earlier this month.

“It was one of the most humiliating and harmful experiences of my life,” said Al Kadi. “I knew that I did not want any other Muslim woman to experience what I did.”

Al Kadi initially refused to remove her hijab and was allowed to take the religious clothing off in a separate cell in front of a single male jailer. She agreed to remove the clothing after receiving assurances that the photos would not appear online. More

Twitter chimes in:
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Virginia Democrats File Proposals To Begin “Confiscation” Of Lawfully Owned Firearms

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Virginia Democrats are filing proposals to confiscate legally-owned firearms according to a second amendment reporter.

Virginia Democrats now have a majority in the state legislature and Governor Northam has committed to passing gun control measures.

TDW:

After taking complete control of the state, Virginia Democrats are beginning to enact their left-wing agenda to undermine Americans’ constitutionally protected Second Amendment rights.

The legislative action comes after leftist Virginia Democrat Governor Ralph Northam announced at the beginning of last month that Democrats “will at least start” their attempts to restrict Virginian’s constitutional rights by “banning the sale of [semi-automatic firearms] and high-capacity magazines, restoring the law that limits purchases to one gun a month, and a red flag law that would empower a court to temporarily remove a gun from a person deemed to be a risk to himself or others,” The Washington Post reported.

When Northam was asked about confiscating firearms from law-abiding citizens, the governor responded, “that’s something I’m working [on] with our secretary of public safety.”

Free Beacon Second Amendment reporter Stephen Gutowski noted the proposed legislation on Monday, tweeting: “Meanwhile Virginia Democrats are filing bills to make the possession of millions of currently-owned firearms illegal. SB16 bans possession of many rifles without any grandfathering provision which means it’s confiscation.”

The legislation that Gutowski linked to included § 18.2-308.8, which proposes banning the “importation, sale, possession, etc., of assault firearms.” More

Virginia’s elected officials swore to uphold the constitution, now that they broke that oath the people of Virginia should impeach each and every one of them.

Then the feds need to arrest them, prosecute them and convict them for civil rights violations. Let them do time in federal prison. That’s the only way this will stop.

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Illinois Set to Revolutionize War on Drugs with Common Sense Marijuana Legislation

It seems as though Illinois is finally learning the lessons of prohibition, nearly a century removed from the violence and corruption instigated by gangsters such as Al Capone.

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Americans have dealt with prohibition before, most famously during the first few decades of the 20th century, in relation to the “scourge” of alcohol on this nation.

Then, we had the temperance movement, whose hard-line, teetotaling ethos bludgeoned the “land of the free” into outlawing booze.  Much like the restrictive gun laws we see in liberal locales today, this prohibiting of firearms has only accomplished one thing:  Putting law-abiding citizens at a disadvantage.

Soon, gangsters, rumrunners, and thugs were running amok, selling booze made either dangerously and illegally, or imported secretly from Canada.  The attempted enforcement of prohibition turned into a bloodbath, and soon, the nation rescinded their virtue-signaling attempt to ban alcohol.

American marijuana laws in the 21st century are slowly catching up to those lessons of nearly a century ago, with Illinois, of all places, working to lead the way.

When lawmakers crafted the law legalizing marijuana in Illinois, they tried to make sure it would right what many see as past wrongs linked to the drug.

In addition to expunging hundreds of thousands of criminal records for marijuana arrests and convictions, the law’s architects added provisions meant to benefit communities that have been the most adversely affected by law enforcement’s efforts to combat the drug.

The so-called social equity provisions are expected to help black applicants, in particular, as blacks are nearly four times as likely as whites to be arrested for marijuana, the American Civil Liberties Union found. The law, which takes effect Jan. 1, also established ways for qualified applicants to pay lower licensing fees and get business loans and technical assistance. And it earmarked part of marijuana sales revenue for neighborhood development grants.

“On the surface, its tone and what it’s trying to do is ahead of any state that’s done this. They’re really setting off in the right way,” said Kayvan Khalatbari, a board member of Minority Cannabis Business Association, which has composed model laws outlining social equity programs. He added that follow-through will be key: “We can’t just set this in motion and set it free.”

Companies that apply for a license to sell marijuana will be judged on a 250-point scale, and those that qualify as social equity applicants will get a 50-point bump.

Not only will these laws take a great deal of power and money out of the hands of Illinois’ violent black market, but they will also spur on an entrepreneurial boom in the midwestern rust belt.

Well over half of the states in the nation currently allow for some form of legal or decriminalized use of cannabis.

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Democrats Furious: President Trump to Receive Justice Award from Black Justice Group

Liberals are furious that President Donald Trump is about to be awarded the “Bipartisan Justice Award” by a prestigious black justice group.

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Liberals are furious that President Donald Trump is about to be awarded the “Bipartisan Justice Award” by a prestigious black justice group for his work on criminal justice reform.

Trump will receive the award at the 2019 Second Step Presidential Justice Forum being held at Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina, by the 20/20 Bipartisan Justice Center, a group founded by twenty black Republicans and twenty black Democrats back in 2015, according to the Daily Caller.

The annual dinner recognizes a public servant who has reached across the aisle to work on matters of criminal justice.

The White House released a celebratory press release about the award, saying:

The Bipartisan Justice Award is the highest honor given annually to a public servant who has demonstrated the ability to work across the aisle to achieve meaningful progress in reforming our criminal justice system. The 2019 Bipartisan Justice award winner is President Donald J. Trump for his Bipartisan leadership in the passage of the historic First Step Act. The award is being given by the 20/20 Bipartisan Justice Center, a non-profit organization founded by 20 Black Republicans and 20 Black Democrats in 2015, to elevate the issue of criminal justice reform above partisan politics.

Even more galling for liberals, many of the Democrat candidates for president will be in attendance at the event and will have to sit squirming in their chairs as Trump gets his award.

According to the Daily Caller:

The following Democrats are set to attend the forum: Maryland Rep. John Delaney, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, California Sen. Kamala Harris, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, former Vice President Joe Biden, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, former HUD Secretary Julian Castro, and Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard as well as Independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Beto O’Rourke is also reportedly scheduled to attend.

Previous honorees include, Democratic New York Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, Republican Georgia Rep. Doug Collins, and Republican West Virginia Sen. Shelley Moore Capito.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @WTHuston.

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Gen. Flynn Attorney Files Surprise Request for Content of Joseph Mifsud Devices

The attorney for General Michael Flynn dropped a bombshell with a request to learn the contents of electronic devices owned by Joseph Mifsud.

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The attorney for General Michael Flynn dropped a bombshell with a request to learn the contents of electronic devices owned by Joseph Mifsud, a mysterious figure at the heart of the government’s case against the general and other members of the Trump administration the government has been targeting.

Mifsud is someone the media has been utterly ignoring, and attorney Sidney Powell’s filing to compel the release of the information on the man’s devices comes as a shock because few even knew that the Department of Justice even possessed any of Mifsud’s devices.

Powell’s filing revealed that the DOJ had somehow come into possession of two of Mifsud’s electronic devices. [See filing here]

The filing introduced on Wednesday demands access to the information on the devices: “The information is material, exculpatory, and relevant to the defense of Mr. Flynn, and specifically to the ‘OCONUS LURES’ and agents that western intelligence tasked against him likely as early as 2014 to arrange — unbeknownst to him ‘connections’ with certain Russians that they would then use against him n their false claims.”

This information may hold information proving that “western intelligence” agencies hired Mifsud to illicitly target the Trump campaign.

But until now, the public was not aware that the DOJ even had these devices. We still don’t know where these devices came from. We have some information that one was manufactured in 2011 and the other in 2014.

Furthermore, the media (and the government) has been claiming that this Mifsud character is a “Russian intelligence agent.” But, doesn’t the fact that the DOJ has these devices mean that claim may be in doubt?

U.S. Attorney John Durham and U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr flew to Italy to review a taped deposition of Joseph Mifsud in September. This all indicates that Mifsud is far more integral to all this than we were previously told.

The DOJ responded to Powell’s filing, saying if there is anything “relevant to sentencing” on the devices, they would provide it to the general’s defense team.

Mifsud is already known to have lied to the FBI about his actions in this case. Rep. Jim Jordan (R, OH) has already highlighted this fact:

Rep. Devin Nunes (R, CA) has also claimed that the FBI “has something to hide” about its interactions with Mifsud.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

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