Tags: Eric Holder

Former CBS Reporter Accuses Government of Secretly Planting Classified Docs on Her Computer

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 2.12.13 PMAttkisson speculated on how the Nixon controversy would have been handled in a world filled with today’s television and social media obsessions.

“Nixon would basically refuse to turn over tapes to Congress, his aides would refuse to testify to Congress or would take the Fifth or would lie to Congress with fair amount of impunity,” she said. “Woodward and Bernstein would be controversialized on social media by special and political interests. … Then at the end Nixon would go on a popular late-night comedy show, during which time he would humorously refer to his attackers as people who were political witch-hunters who believed in Area 51-type conspiracy theories.”

– From the Huffington Post article: Sharyl Attkisson Says Journalists Have ‘Gone Backwards’ Since Watergate Scandal

In case you forgot, Sharyl Attkisson is the former CBS News reporter who resigned from the network in March after expressing frustration that her stories covering the Obama Administration’s role in the Benghazi and Fast and Furious scandals were being spiked due to a desire to protect the President.

In 2013, Attkisson also expressed her belief that her computer had been hacked, which CBS News subsequently confirmed. CBS reported at the time:

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Pulitzer Prize Winning Journalist on Obama: “The Greatest Enemy of Press Freedom in a Generation”

Screen Shot 2014-08-18 at 11.31.29 AMJames Risen is not just a phenomenal reporter, he is also an extremely courageous and honorable American patriot. His case is a very disturbing one, and it has justifiably received a great deal of national attention. In a nutshell, the Obama Administration is threatening the pulitzer prize winning journalist with prison unless he reveals the source behind one of his stories. This is something no journalist worth his salt would ever do, but the fact our own government would resort to threats of incarceration in order to instill fear in the press to prevent it from doing its job is quite telling and extremely dangerous.

Mr. Risen understands this danger more than just about anyone else, which is why he has previously stated he is prepared to go to jail in order to defend the First Amendment from Obama, who he calls the greatest enemy to press freedom in a generation.”

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Eric Holder Announces Task Force to Focus on “Domestic Terrorists”

Screen Shot 2014-06-03 at 11.06.29 AMIt’s been obvious for quite some time that the so-called “war on terror” is nothing more than a fear-mongering induced power grab; a convenient excuse to strip the citizenry of its civil liberties and humanity. Many commentators, including myself, have predicted for years that the entire counter-terror juggernaut that has been constructed post-9/11 would be ultimately redirected upon the domestic population.

Snowden’s heroic whistleblowing has already proven without a doubt that the government spy apparatus (along with tech company complicity) has been zeroed in on the domestic population for quite some time, but is the situation about to escalate? Are the feds so fearful of their own people, they are about to focus all their counter-terror energy on U.S. citizens? It appears so.

I warned about this development back in 2011 in my post: The War on Freedom. In it I stated:

This whole charade shouldn’t be called “The War on Terror.”  It is actually all about keeping the citizenry terrified.  The government loves keeping you in a state of fear so that then they can do anything they want to the little sheep.  It should be called “The War on Freedom.”  Your freedom.

Before I get to the main topic of this article, I think it’s important to read excerpts from yesterday’s powerful and timely op-ed by Noam Chomsky titled: Edward Snowden, the World’s “Most Wanted Criminal. Discussing the Snowden revelations, he writes:

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A Broken, Corrupt and Immoral Criminal Justice System

You know that the rule of law has essentially vanished when the Attorney General himself feels compelled to state: “America’s legal system, we must face the reality that, as it stands, our system is in too many respects broken.” That is precisely what Eric Holder stated earlier this week, while seemingly taking no responsibility for that fact despite being the top lawyer in the nation. Guess he was too busy protecting his banker masters from prosecution to notice.

In any event, the broken criminal justice system really took center stage earlier this year when the federal prosector Carmen Ortiz drove child prodigy Aaron Swartz to his death by piling on overzealous charges in an attempt to advance her career. Instead she drove a gentle genius to an untimely death. Kudos Ortiz.

In light of Holder’s comment, Bloomberg columnist Clive Crook wrote an excellent article outlining some of the main attributes of out increasingly Kafkaesque legal system. Here are some key excerpts:

“As a prosecutor, a judge, an attorney in private practice, and now, as our nation’s attorney general, I’ve seen the criminal justice system firsthand, from nearly every angle. While I have the utmost faith in — and dedication to — America’s legal system, we must face the reality that, as it stands, our system is in too many respects broken.”

In a widely reported speech this week, Eric Holder delivered that assessment of U.S. criminal justice. Many commended his frankness, but if you ask me he’s confused. A broken system of justice shouldn’t command the utmost faith; it should arouse the utmost skepticism. And his appraisal was actually too generous. America’s criminal-justice system is not “in too many respects broken”: It’s a national disgrace, from top to bottom.

According to a forthcoming report from the American Civil Liberties Union, 2,074 federal inmates are serving sentences of life imprisonment without possibility of parole for nonviolent crimes. Think about that.

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The Scorecard: 8,000 Wall Street Protesters Arrested, Zero Bankers

America really has become the “land of the thief, home of the slave.”  While a minority of awake citizens desperately tries to shake their neighbors from their deep slumber, the masses continue to sit in front of the television, suck their thumbs and watch Desperate Housewives, while the oligarchs laugh incredulously at them all the way to the bank.

We all know that Attorney General Eric Holder couldn’t find a guilty banker if it came up to him and sat on his lap, but these statistics are pretty amazing and a testament to how apathetic and lost of a culture we have become.  This database of all the Occupy protestors arrested and where it happened is pretty cool.

From the Huffington Post:

Here’s a fact that may make your blood boil: Nearly 8,000 Occupy Wall Streetprotesters have been arrested in association with the activist movement, while not one banker has been prosecuted for the actions that lead up to the country’s financial meltdown.

The website OccupyArrests.com has tracked 7,736 in 122 cities nationwide since the Occupy movement began in September 2011.

“We want our attorney general, Eric Holder, to bring some accountability from the banks and put them in jail,” protester Vivian Richardson, whose home was foreclosed on in 2010, told The Huffington Post Monday.

The Department of Justice has long been a target of Occupy protesters for its unwillingness to take judicial action against those responsible for the financial crisis.

Calm down everyone.  We all know Mr. Holder is far too busy running assault weapons into Mexico and discarding the First Amendment to be bothered with trivial matters such as the prosecution of the most destructive criminals in U.S. history.

Full article here.

In Liberty,
Mike

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Three of the Four U.S. Citizens Killed with Drones were Killed by Accident

While most people reading this are well aware of Eric Holder’s letter to Senator Patrick J. Leahy that four U.S. citizens have been killed by drones strikes, the real story here is that it appears only one of them was killed intentionally.  The others were apparently collateral damage.  Interesting that “targeted” strikes only end up with a 25% success rate, and this is when we are talking about American citizens.  So how many innocent men, women and children have we really killed in these strikes.  Does anyone even care?  From Eric Holder’s letter:

Since 2009, the United States, in the conduct of U.S. counterterrorism operations against al Qa’ida and its associated forces outside of areas of active hostilities, has specifically targeted and killed one U.S. citizen, Anwar Al-Aulaqi.  The United States is further aware of three other U.S. citizens who have been killed in such U.S. counterterrorism operations over that same time period:  Samir Khan, ‘Abd al Rahman Anwar al-Aulaqi and Jude Kennan Mohammad.  These individuals were not specifically targeted by the United States.

Did you catch all of that?  That’s a lot of very scary twisted jargon that can basically justify anything.  I mean “associated forces,” “outside of areas of active hostilities,” and “not specifically targeted.”  We’re in big trouble and it’s not because of terrorists…

Here’s a link to the entire Holder letter.

In Liberty,
Mike

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Most Transparent President? Obama Cabinet Refuses to Release Info on Cost of Travel

Just another lie amongst an impressive and ever growing list.  The worst part is he completely understands that his supporters have no idea what day of the week it is, let alone that he is funneling the remaining wealth of the nation upward to the oligarch class.

From Bloomberg:

More than half of President Barack Obama’s cabinet agencies continue to defy open-government rules by not disclosing the cost of travel by top officials.

Above. The. Law.

Nine of 15 cabinet offices have yet to release details of their out-of-town travel records six months after Bloomberg News filed requests for those documents under the Freedom of Information Act. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Energy Secretary Steven Chu and Kathleen Sebelius of the Department of Health and Human Services are among those who haven’t complied.

The law requires agencies to respond to requests within 20 working days. Watchdogs say the delays show that the president hasn’t fulfilled his promise of greater transparency, and one group found that more than half of 99 federal offices ignored a directive to overhaul the way they respond to filings.

The lowest rate of response — 40 percent — has come from Obama’s cabinet. Among executive departments, only Treasury, Homeland Security, Labor, Commerce, Transportation, and Veterans Affairs released travel details.

Now here’s the money line…

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Ever Heard of the National Counterterrorism Center? Didn’t Think So

It’s very interesting that in recent weeks the mainstream press seems to be unveiling the surveillance state to the American sheeple.  I was shocked when I read the Wired article about how the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was funding the placement of microphones and cameras on public buses to monitor innocent citizens’ behavior.  Now we have this information published yesterday in the Wall Street Journal:

Top U.S. intelligence officials gathered in the White House Situation Room in March to debate a controversial proposal. Counterterrorism officials wanted to create a government dragnet, sweeping up millions of records about U.S. citizens—even people suspected of no crime.

Not everyone was on board. “This is a sea change in the way that the government interacts with the general public,” Mary Ellen Callahan, chief privacy officer of the Department of Homeland Security, argued in the meeting, according to people familiar with the discussions.

A week later, the attorney general signed the changes into effect.

Thanks for the justice Holder.

The rules now allow the little-known National Counterterrorism Center to examine the government files of U.S. citizens for possible criminal behavior, even if there is no reason to suspect them. That is a departure from past practice, which barred the agency from storing information about ordinary Americans unless a person was a terror suspect or related to an investigation.

Now, NCTC can copy entire government databases—flight records, casino-employee lists, the names of Americans hosting foreign-exchange students and many others. The agency has new authority to keep data about innocent U.S. citizens for up to five years, and to analyze it for suspicious patterns of behavior. Previously, both were prohibited.

The changes also allow databases of U.S. civilian information to be given to foreign governments for analysis of their own. In effect, U.S. and foreign governments would be using the information to look for clues that people might commit future crimes.

The National Counterterrorism Center’s ideas faced no similar public resistance. For one thing, the debate happened behind closed doors.

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Is Obama Close to Waging War on Legalized Pot?

I believe that election day 2012 will go down in U.S. history as an extremely important event.  No, not because in its national apathy the citizens re-elected a crony capitalist puppet as President.  Rather, because it was the day when two states overwhelmingly rejected the Federal Prohibition on marijuana.  Of course, I am referring to Amendment 64 in Colorado and Initiative 502 in Washington State, which legalize pot for recreational use.

Upon its passage, I wrote a piece titled: Colorado Legalizes Marijuana: Your Move Eric Holder.  I knew right away that the Federales would not be pleased by this law.  I also knew that, contrary to popular myth, Obama isn’t “liberal” in any sense of the word and in fact he has demonstrated highly authoritarian characteristics throughout his Presidency and an uncanny willingness to lie repeatedly.  So I assumed his reaction would be aggressive, because for him this issue isn’t about marijuana, but rather Federal (his own) power versus the power of his “subjects.”

We learn from the New York Times that the administration is indeed looking to get tough:

WASHINGTON — Senior White House and Justice Department officials are considering plans for legal action against Colorado and Washington that could undermine voter-approved initiatives to legalize the recreational use of marijuana in those states, according to several people familiar with the deliberations.  

Some law enforcement officials, alarmed at the prospect that marijuana users in both states could get used to flouting federal law openly, are said to be pushing for a stern response.

The Obama administration declined to comment on the deliberations, but pointed to a statement the Justice Department issued on Wednesday — the day before the initiative took effect in Washington — in the name of the United States attorney in Seattle, Jenny A. Durkan. She warned Washington residents that the drug remained illegal.

So what are the Federales considering?

One option is for federal prosecutors to bring some cases against low-level marijuana users of the sort they until now have rarely bothered with, waiting for a defendant to make a motion to dismiss the case because the drug is now legal in that state.

A more aggressive option is for the Justice Department to file lawsuits against the states to prevent them from setting up systems to regulate and tax marijuana, as the initiatives contemplated.

Another potential avenue would be to cut off federal grants to the states unless their legislatures restored anti-marijuana laws, said Gregory Katsas, who led the civil division of the Justice Department during the George W. Bush administration.

This is going to be an incredible drama to watch unfold, and in many ways I wouldn’t mind seeing Obama get aggressive on this issue because it will be such a huge political blunder.  Not only was the vote overwhelming in favor of legalization in my state of Colorado (55% voted yes and it received more votes that Obama did in the state), but a very high percentage of Democrats support legalization and does he really want to start off his second term by marginalizing the remaining supporters he hasn’t already as a result of his horrible track record on civil liberties, banker bailouts and aggressive foreign policy?  It’s not just Democrats though.  A Rasmussen poll in May showed that 56% of those surveyed nationwide were in favor of legalization.  Obama would just be fighting the inevitably culturally, protecting Mexican drug cartel profits and in the end just look like a fool.

Even more than a States rights versus Federal power issue, this is about democracy versus authoritarianism.  Obama pushing back hard on the will of the people will only further expose the sham that is his Presidency for more to see.

I also discussed this issue on my recent appearance of Capital Account, which you can watch here.

Full New York Times article is here.

In Liberty,
Mike

Big American Banks Particularly Enjoy Ripping off Active Duty U.S. Soldiers

The following article from the Houston Press titled “Country Club Sopranos” is the most comprehensive rundown I have seen of all the various frauds committed by large banks since we bailed them out.  What I find particularly infuriating is that the banks seem to really like ripping off members of the armed forces.  Veterans pay close attention.  The biggest threat to America does not reside outside our borders, but from within.  This is a very powerful article and I think could be quite effective in waking up some sheeple so please pass it along.  Here are some of my favorite passages:

But despite a colossal civil-rights fraud perpetrated against 30,000 customers, the settlement amounted to just .011 percent of the San Francisco bank’s annual income. It was like forcing a $30,000-a-year working stiff to pay a $240 fine.

These were just the opening salvos of the assault. Bank of America was caught illegally foreclosing on the homes of active-duty soldiers.

But not a single boss went to jail. Some firms settled for just a fraction of what they’d stolen. Most have never admitted wrongdoing. And in the ethics-optional land known as Wall Street, many saw their stock prices rise.

“Unquestionably, that’s true,” says Notre Dame law professor G. Robert Blakey, whose career prosecuting organized crime runs all the way back to the Kennedy administration. “I was looking at stuff on Mulberry Street, and the real theft was on Wall Street…All of the people who ran the scams have their big houses and their airplanes, and they’re laughing — they got away with it.”

“My biggest mistake in life was that I committed my crimes in the 1980s,” he says. “If I committed them today, I wouldn’t even get house arrest. I’d just hire a good lawyer and pay a fine and I’d be free.”

It began the year before, when Dimon’s bank paid a $27 million settlement for systematically screwing 6,000 active-duty soldiers. JP Morgan was caught overcharging on interest rates and illegally foreclosing on the soldiers’ homes. (The bank did not respond to interview requests.)

But when he appointed Eric Holder attorney general, it was like making John Dillinger’s lawyer head of the FBI bank-robbery unit.  Holder, a former Wall Street defense attorney, would ramp up big-dollar settlements. But criminal charges quietly sputtered to a trickle.

“Retired criminal” Sam Antar, who now trains the IRS and FBI how to bust corporate looters: “It’s almost like stealing a billion dollars with a pencil is not as bad. You have a lesser chance of going to jail than if you mug somebody on the streets of New York.”

So bad has the leniency become that the feds are allowing bankers to keep much of what they steal. Ask Morgan Stanley.

In August, it settled with the Justice Department over its role in fixing New York City’s electricity rates. The bank played middleman in a deal between two energy providers, KeySpan and Astoria Generating, which then colluded to withhold electricity from the market, artificially driving up prices and costing consumers an estimated $300 million.

Morgan Stanley was paid $21 million for arranging the scheme. But the ever-generous Holder let the bank settle for $4.8 million.

It marked a stunning new low in federal prosecutions, akin to forcing a bank robber to return just $2,500 after stealing $10,000. With no jail time, of course.

Morgan Stanley offers little defense for its actions. “We will decline comment,” says spokeswoman Mary Claire Delaney. But New York state senator Michael Gianaris will happily fill that silence.

“It’s a good business deal for Morgan Stanley,” he says. “They could break the law and get away with almost $17 million in profits for it, so why not do it again? If they get caught — and that’s a big if — they still get 70 percent of the profits.”

Peter Vallone Jr., a Queens councilman and former prosecutor, has never seen such tender handling of criminals.

I was a prosecutor for six years, and I’ve never seen someone being fined less than they made.”

In less than two years, Bank of America had chalked up six major fraud cases. But there was no talk of three strikes. No indictments for racketeering. Not one executive charged with a crime.

Now here is my favorite one:

A month later, ING paid a $619 million settlement for violating international sanctions and anti-terrorist laws. It spent a decade providing “state sponsors of terror and other sanctioned entities with access to the U.S. financial system,” Assistant Attorney General Lisa Monaco said at the time.

So the American people have sacrificed the Bill of Rights and all civil liberties to fight the phony “war on terror,” yet banks pay a settlement for aiding “terrorists.”  What do you think would happen to you if you were caught doing that?  A cell in Guantanamo? A drone missile to the head?

Full article here.

In Liberty,
Mike