The FBI has been getting all of the attention in the Deep State’s slow-motion soft coup against President Donald Trump, but Obama CIA Director John Brennan was in up to his nose on this abuse.

And it will surprise no one that Brennan seems to have worked hand-in-hand with Senator Harry Reid, then-Democratic leader in the U.S. Senate.

We’re aiming to find out just how these two gentlemen worked their plan. We have filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for records of communications with former Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) and his staff regarding the anti-Trump dossier funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee (Judicial Watch v. Central Intelligence Agency (No. 1:18-cv-01502)).

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid reportedly believed then-Obama CIA Director Brennan was feeding him information about alleged links between the Trump campaign and the Russian government in order to make public accusations:

According to “Russian Roulette,” by Yahoo! News chief investigative correspondent Michael Isikoff and David Corn, the Washington bureau chief of the left-wing Mother Jones magazine, Brennan contacted Reid on Aug. 25, 2016, to brief him on the state of Russia’s interference in the presidential campaign. Brennan briefed other members of the so-called Gang of Eight, but Reid is the only who took direct action.

Two days after the briefing, Reid wrote a letter to then-FBI Director James Comey asserting that “evidence of a direct connection between the Russian government and Donald Trump’s presidential campaign continues to mount.”

Reid called on Comey to investigate the links “thoroughly and in a timely fashion.”

Reid saw Brennan’s outreach as “a sign of urgency,” Isikoff and Corn wrote in the book.

“Reid also had the impression that Brennan had an ulterior motive. He concluded the CIA chief believed the public needed to know about the Russian operation, including the information about the possible links to the Trump campaign.”

According to the book, Brennan told Reid that the intelligence community had determined that the Russian government was behind the hack and leak of Democratic emails and that Russian President Vladimir Putin was behind it. Brennan also told Reid that there was evidence that Russian operatives were attempting to tamper with election results.

Indeed, on August 27, 2016, Reid wrote a letter to Comey accusing President Trump’s campaign of colluding with the Russian government.

We filed our FOIA lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia after the CIA failed to respond to our simple February 12, 2018, FOIA request for:

  • All records of communications, including but not limited to letters, emails, text messages, and instant chats, between former CIA Director John Brennan and/or officials in the CIA Director’s Office on the one hand, and Senator Harry Reid and/or members of Senator Reid’s staff on the other hand, regarding, concerning or relating to the Christopher Steele “dossier” and/or alleged “collusion” between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia.
  • Copies of any reports, memoranda or other materials provided to Senator Reid and/or members of his staff by the CIA relating to alleged Russian “collusion” or cooperation between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia.
  • All materials, including briefing reports and memos, audio/video presentations, PowerPoint presentations and any other records, used by CIA Director Brennan and/or other CIA officials to brief Senator Reid and/or members of his staff on alleged “collusion” between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia.
  • All notes, minutes, transcripts, and audio and/or visual recordings made of any and all briefings provided by the CIA to Senator Reid and/or members of his staff regarding alleged “collusion” between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia.

Brennan has come under public scrutiny as one of the suspected prime movers of the “Spygate” scandal against then-candidate Trump and his team during 2015 and 2016 and later against President Trump and members of his administration.

Brennan himself has revealed his deep-seated animus toward President Trump and used his media platform as an MSNBC commentator to repeatedly attack the president.

When President Trump tweeted about FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s firing in March 2018, Brennan retweeted and responded:

When the full extent of your venality, moral turpitude, and political corruption becomes known, you will take your rightful place as a disgraced demagogue in the dustbin of history. You may scapegoat Andy McCabe, but you will not destroy America … America will triumph over you.

In response to the president’s tweet that former FBI director Comey is a “proven leaker and liar,” Brennan retweeted and responded in April 2018 that President Trump’s administration is a failing “kakistocracy.”

Obama CIA Director John Brennan’s unhinged attacks on President Trump help explain the Obama administration spying abuses targeting Trump. The mere fact that we had to file this lawsuit shows the CIA has something to hide on Obama-era abuses and collusion with Democrats in Congress to target then-candidate Trump.

We filed a separate FOIA lawsuit against the CIA on March 6, 2017, for records related to the investigation of former Trump National Security Advisor and retired United States Army Lieutenant General Michael Flynn’s communications with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak (Judicial Watch v. Central Intelligence Agency et al. (No.1:17-cv-00397)).

Per the usual stonewalling, the National Security Agency refused to confirm or deny the existence of intelligence records about communications between Gen. Flynn and Amb. Kislyak.

That our nation’s federal spy and police agencies were hijacked for partisan gain is frightening.





Although his texts to his paramour indicate he hated Donald Trump as much or possibly more than most of us hate Hitler or Saddam Hussein, Peter Strzok insists his extreme feelings did not affect his work in the Hillary Clinton email matter or the subsequent Russia probe.

He repeated that ad nauseam throughout the circus-like congressional hearing Thursday. But no matter how many protestations the man makes, under oath or not, Occam's razor plus most of our life experiences tell us that Strzok is full of it.

Still, you need concrete evidence and, in a situation like this, that is hard to come by.  Only a real nincompoop would generate it and -- though Strzok was clearly no genius, leaving a huge digital trail of his extra-curricular activities (astounding for a counter-intelligence officer) -- none has surfaced yet. And if the FBI has its way, none will surface until roughly a thousand years after humanity has left Earth for another galaxy.

So we are left to our own devices to determine whether this man is lying. During the hearings, Louie Gohmert applied the old Roman precept -- falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus (you lie about one thing, you lie about everything) -- making the audience gasp by speaking aloud the elephant in the room.  Strzok had obviously lied to his wife about his affair.  Why should he be believed about anything?

Well, good question, except that it would disqualify about two-thirds of American presidents and who knows how many people currently in that very hearing room. (You can hazard your guess in the comments.)

So we're all liars and maybe we are, but I'll tell you what convinced me -- besides an overwhelming amount of circumstantial evidence equivalent to the O.J. trial -- that Strzok was not just your garden variety prevaricator but an out-and-out conniving, evil S. O. B.: his smirk.

The shrinks call that "inappropriate affect" and it sure was.  What the hell was this guy smirking about? Even in the remote possibility (oh, how remote) that his bias had no direct political and investigatory consequence, he had shamed himself, his family, and the FBI and its personnel tremendously, damaging the organization materially for years to come. And yet he was smirking.

In fact, he wasn't just smirking.  He was fighting back as if he were the wounded party. One "useful idiot" on the Democratic side even said he deserved the Purple Heart.

Roger L. Simon is an Academy Award-nominated screenwriter, award-winning novelist and blogger, and the co-founder of PJ Media. His book, Turning Right at Hollywood and Vine: The Perils of Coming Out Conservative in Tinseltown, was re-released in an updated edition in 2011.

  





I thought about the double standard in free speech as a I read this PJM piece by John Ellis entitled "Male Feminists Gather in Aspen to Ponder How to Fix Men — the 'Heterosexual White Ones'":

In case you were unaware, leftists are concerned about men. Believing there to be a "masculinity crisis," leftists recently convened at the Aspen Ideas Festival to brainstorm ways to "fix" men. Specifically, in the words of The Atlantic, "heterosexual white ones."...

If you're puzzled over my eye-rolling, read The Atlantic's Alia Wong's description of the conference's consensus view of "heterosexual white ones":

What the panelists did agree on is that the crisis is damaging American society—harming men’s educational outcomes, women’s well-being, and the public’s safety. Bridges pointed to research showing that when men feel like their masculinity is challenged, they are more likely to advocate for war, discriminate against homosexuals, express an interest in buying an SUV, and believe in the inherent superiority of men. They are also more likely to express attitudes supportive of sexual assault and coercion.

The paragraph that caught my eye from the PJM article is this:

The fact that people like Michael Kimmel are able to hold hand-ringing discussions about the "Crisis of Masculinity" without the fear of having the door kicked in by the Gestapo is thanks to the very society they despise. At no point in human history have more people had more access to wealth and privilege than in 21st century U.S. of A. Uprooting and destroying the foundations of the system that have brought us to this point is nonsensically stupid.
The left doesn't have the fear of the door being kicked in because those on the right believe in free speech and leave them alone for the most part. Or it could be that the media coverage for the left is always positive and for the right mostly negative — so those on the right don't even try, knowing that they have no help, little protection and bad publicity as a consequence while those on the left have few or no consequences for their bad or even deadly behavior.

  





Does Islam itself promote hostility for and violence against non-Muslims, or are all the difficulties between the West and Islam based on secondary factors such as “radical” interpretations of Islam, economics, and other grievances?

This is the fundamental question.

Obviously, if “anti-infidel” hostility is inherent to Islam itself, then the conflict becomes existential -- a true clash of civilizations with no easy fixes and lots of ugly implications along the horizon. Because of this truism, those who whitewash Islam’s image in the West insist on the opposite: that current difficulties are temporal, and not rooted to innate Islamic teachings.

Enter Shariah: What Everyone Needs to Know, co-authored by John Esposito and Natana J. Delong-Bas. The authors’ goal is to exonerate Sharia -- which they portray as enshrining “the common good (maslahah), human dignity, social justice, and the centrality of the community” -- from Western criticism or fear, which they claim is based solely on “myth” and “sensationalism.”

In their introductory chapters, they define Sharia as being built upon the words of the Koran and the Sunna (“example”) of the Muslim prophet Muhammad as contained in sahih (canonical) hadiths. They add:

Shariah and Islamic law are not the same thing. The distinction between divine law (Shariah) and its human interpretation, application, and development (Islamic law) is important to keep in mind throughout this book …

Whereas Shariah is immutable and infallible, Islamic law (fiqh) is fallible and changeable.

Next, the authors highlight how important Sharia is to a majority of Muslims. They cite a 2013 Pew Poll which found that 69% of Muslims in the Middle East and North Africa, 73% in South Asia, and 55% in Central Asia believe that “Sharia is God’s [Allah’s] divine revelation.”

Pew found that even larger numbers “favored the establishment of Shariah as official law”: 99% in Afghanistan, 84% in South Asia, 74% in the Middle East and North Africa, and 64% in sub-Saharan Africa.

So far so good: The authors’ introductory claim (that Sharia is fundamental to Islam) and statistics (that hundreds of millions of Muslims revere Sharia and wish to see it implemented) are correct.

Now, the aforementioned question: Is Sharia itself behind the intolerance, misogyny, violence, and terrorism committed in the name of Islam?

Here, the hitherto objective authors shift gears and take on the mantle of apologists. Their thesis is simple: Any and all negative activities Muslims engage in are to be blamed on anything and everything -- as long as it’s not Sharia.

In order to support this otherwise unsupportable position, and as might be expected, the remainder of the book consists of obfuscation, dissembling, and lots and lots of contextual omissions and historical distortions. A small sampling follows.

  





I don't always take advice from foreign billionaires, but when I do, they should absolutely be advising American taxpayers on the need to give away their money while living in a floating tax shelter.

One solution to income inequality is giving out free cash, according to the British billionaire entrepreneur Richard Branson.

“A basic income should be introduced in Europe and in America,” Branson told David Gelles of The New York Times.

“It’s a disgrace to see people sleeping on the streets with this material wealth all around them,” Branson said.

A universal basic income, as it's known, is a cash payment distributed to residents irrespective of their employment status.

You first.

Meanwhile, here are some headlines about Branson:

How Virgin boss Richard Branson relies on taxpayers for his empire — London Times

I've been a tax exile for seven years, says Branson — Telegraph

Richard Branson tax fraud: How a youthful indiscretion helped create a Billionaire — Slate

Sir Richard Branson denies that he 'left Britain for tax reasons' — Financial Times

Richard Branson warns Edinburgh that introducing a tourist tax will drive tourists away — The Independent

Can someone please provide Sir Branson with a universal basic income while confiscating all his wealth. As Bono once said, "From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs. Or was that Karl Marx?





The retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy has cranked-up DC political hysteria to 11. When we have grown adults weeping in their offices over the retirement of a judge, it is perhaps high time to question whether any group of nine individuals should ever have so much power over the political landscape. Ryan McMaken was making this very case in the aftermath of Antonin Scalia’s passing:

We’re told by pundits and politicians from across the spectrum how indispensable, awe-inspiring, and absolutely essential the Supreme Court is. In truth, we should be looking for ways to undermine, cripple, and to generally force the Court into irrelevance....

If Americans want a government that's more likely to leave them in peace, they should ignore the pleas to elect another politician who will just appoint another donor or political ally to the court. Instead, state and local governments should seek at every turn to ignore, nullify, and generally disregard the rulings of the Court when they run counter to local law and local institutions where — quite unlike the Supreme Court — average citizens have some actual influence over the political institutions that affect their lives.

Interestingly enough, his idea of Congress stacking the courts – in order to erode the perception of the Supreme Court as a non-political actor – is even gaining traction in interesting circles.

With the stakes now seen as being so high, the Democratic Party is faced with a great deal of Monday morning quarterbacking on how they handled the post-Scalia vacancy. Most now concede their hubris got the best of them in assuming Hillary Clinton would now be president and that Gorsuch’s vote would be held by a judge to the left of Merrick Garland. Their clear strategy now is a desperate attempt to portray Mitch McConnell as a hypocrite for pushing a court nomination on an election year. This strategy will obviously fail because McConnell is a known hypocrite and politics is simply about power – not legislative norms.

When this effort proves to be futile, my guess will be that the next strategy will be confrontation. Similar to what we’ve seen this morning with protests outside of Washington Immigration Control Enforcement offices, the activist base of the Democratic Party will take to the streets while their allied pundits will make Kennedy’s replacement out to be the last stand for the civilized world. This will be the third or fourth installment of a franchise even more tired than Star Wars: a battle between the brave #resistance against an authoritarian Trump regime determined to erode the rights of all Americans who are not white, male, and straight.

This particular chapter in the “authoritarian threat” story becomes all the more amusing when we consider this past Supreme Court session. As Sean Davis of The Federalist astutely noted, three of the most significant cases on this year’s docket saw the “liberal” wing of the court vote in favor of forced participation:

NIFLA v. Becerra, a 5-4 decision, defended the right of anti-abortion pregnancy center from being legally required to provide information about abortion services, overturning a 2015 California mandate. The significance of this legislation isn’t only major for the issue of abortion, but has larger ramifications preventing government mandates in other medical prescriptions.

Janus v. AFSCME, another 5-4 decision, protected government non-union members from being obligated to pay union dues against their wishes. Obviously no institution should have that right (even government), which led to employee dollars going to help promote causes – including political campaigns – they personally objected to.

Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado, the infamous gay wedding cake case, was another clear example of forced participation. While this was a legal victory for the bakers involved, the decision itself became rather narrow and philosophically hollow – focusing on the actions of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission’s and their clear hostility to the Christian faith. As such, Justices Kagan and Breyer joined the majority. This only makes the opposition of Justices Ginsberg and Sotomayor all the more alarming. (In the defense of all four members of the Court's left wing, they did vote with Justice Roberts in Carpenter v. United States - an important electronic privacy case. It should go without saying that authoritarian impulses do not lie solely with the robes from the left.)

So, once again, what should be made clear here is that the left is not concerned about “authoritarianism”, but simply rather losing the ability to enforce their will on the public. In their defense, this response is a fair and reasonable concern – no people should be forced to live under a government explicitly hostile to their world views.

So what should a political minority do? Perhaps start by reading some Jeff Deist.





As good as Washington is at making bad things happen, it is just as good at finding other people to blame it on. A great example of this is the push the last year to blame America’s opioid crisis on one of its favorite boogeymen: China. While it’s perhaps not so surprising to see such rhetoric from the Trump Administration, it’s a narrative that has received a bipartisan endorsement in Congress.

The argument is that it is far too easy for Chinese chemical manufactures to send products like fentanyl to the United States, and therefore China deserves blame for its role in overdoses. This argument, however, is absurd for a number of reasons - including that by Congress's own analysis, it's the United States Postal Service that is the preferred method of transport (perhaps this explain's Trump's new desire to privatize the post office?) In responding to the allegations in a press conference today, the Chinese government rightfully pointed the finger at the only government body that deserves blame: the Federal government.

"It's common knowledge that most new psychoactive substances (NPS) have been designed in laboratories in the United States and Europe, and their deep-processing and consumption also mostly take place there," said Liu Yuejin, deputy chief of China's National Narcotics Control Commission.

"The U.S. should adopt a comprehensive and balanced strategy to reduce and suppress the huge demand in the country for fentanyl and other similar drugs as soon as possible," said Liu, who comments coincided with the release of China's annual drug situation report.

"When fewer and fewer Americans use fentanyl, there would be no market for it."

While the Chinese officials didn’t go so far as to explicitly blame Washington for the problem, they would have been justified in doing so.

Last year Mark Thornton did a great job walking through how the opioid crisis is the direct result of misguided government policies that escalate the very issues politicians claim to want to fix.

  




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