FISA documents reveal FBI collusion

FISA documents reveal FBI collusion

Boston Herald

FILE – In this file July 7, 2016, photo then-FBI Director James Comey testifies before the House Oversight Committee to discuss Hillary Clinton’s email investigation, at the Capitol in Washington.

Our media’s valiant efforts to distract us notwithstanding, information continues to seep out that underscores how badly a housecleaning is needed in Washington, D.C.

Last week saw the release of the applications used to obtain warrants from the FISA court to spy on Carter Page, an adviser to the Trump presidential campaign. Obtained by Judicial Watch, the 400-plus pages of (heavily redacted) documents support the conclusions earlier drawn by the House Intelligence Committee (and denounced by Democrats as hysteria): the FISA warrants were obtained through obfuscation and deceit.

As various commentators predicted would be proven, the bulk of the information that formed the basis for the FISA warrant applications was the “dossier” of allegations about Donald Trump’s activities in Russia. This dossier was provided to the FBI by British spy Christopher Steele. Steele was hired during the 2016 presidential campaign by opposition research firm Fusion GPS, who was paid by Hillary Clinton’s law firm Perkins Coie, who was paid by the Clinton campaign and the DNC. The allegations were scandalous and completely unverified, in violation of federal statutes and FISA court rules.

In other words, the FBI used oppo research paid for by the Democrats as justification for government spying on a political opponent and other Americans.

But there’s more. In another incredible coincidence, Fusion GPS had hired scholar and professor Nellie Ohr as a “paid Russian expert.” Nellie Ohr happens to be married to Bruce Ohr, deputy attorney general in the Justice Department. Bruce Ohr is alleged to have passed his wife’s anti-Trump research to the FBI. He was demoted for failing to disclose not only his wife’s employment with Fusion GPS, but also his own meetings with Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson.

The FISA court was never told any of that. They were never supposed to know. None of us was ever supposed to know.

When thousands of DNC emails were leaked to the public through Julian Assange’s organization WikiLeaks, we learned that Hillary Clinton had abused the primary process, nearly bankrupted the DNC and effectively stole the nomination from Bernie Sanders. We also learned the press played favorites with Clinton, getting her approval before running stories and forwarding debate questions to Clinton in advance. (The official line is Russians hacked the DNC computers and gave the emails to WikiLeaks. Assange and former U.S. and U.K. intelligence officials vehemently deny this, and maintain it was an inside “leak,” not a hack. The DNC refused to turn over their servers to the FBI for inspection.)

And then there is Hillary Clinton’s misuse of a personal email server to handle classified State Department information. We now know that then-FBI director James Comey decided not to prosecute Clinton before the investigation was even concluded. We also know that FBI attorney Peter Strzok rewrote Comey’s initial report to change Comey’s description of Clinton’s conduct from “grossly negligent” — which was a violation of the applicable federal statute — to “extremely careless.”

This is the same Peter Strzok who expressed his loathing for Donald Trump in many of the tens of thousands of texts he exchanged with his lover and fellow FBI attorney Lisa Page. Strzok infamously assured Page that they had an “insurance policy” and that they “would stop” Trump from becoming president. At a congressional hearing two weeks ago, Strzok arrogantly insisted that his bias did not affect his job performance.

He must think we’re all idiots.

But then, we were never supposed to know any of this.

Hillary Clinton was supposed to win. No one would know the FBI “investigation” into her violations of federal statutes was a foregone conclusion that would exonerate her. No one would know that members of the FBI and the DOJ were using their government powers to attack and discredit the man who wasn’t “supposed” to win, but did.

Trump’s unorthodox presidency has been a great gift. It has exposed the corruption in our government, and the betrayal of the American public by so much of the press.

Laura Hollis is a syndicated columnist.

How often does the Presidential motorcade honk upon request? Asks QAnon

Prosecutors: Rosenstein gave Mueller OK to probe, indict Manafort

The new disclosures come in response to a motion Manafort’s lawyers filed asking to have the criminal charges pending against him thrown out.

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/04/03/mueller-paul-manafort-probe-rosenstein-approves-497701

Rod Rosenstein is pictured. | Getty ImagesDeputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has sometimes been the focus of President Donald Trump’s ire.

President Donald Trump’s No. 2 appointee at the Justice Department, Rod Rosenstein, specifically authorized special counsel Robert Mueller to investigate former Trump campaign Chairman Paul Manafort and approved his indictment, prosecutors said in a court filing late Monday night.

Some Trump allies have suggested that by pursuing charges of money laundering, tax fraud and unregistered foreign lobbying against Manafort, Mueller is straying from his core mission of probing alleged collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia prior to the 2016 election.

However, Mueller’s team submitted a previously undisclosed memo to a federal court in Washington showing that a few months after Mueller was appointed last May, Rosenstein gave him explicit authority to target Manafort over the financial aspects of his lobbying work for the Ukrainian government — in addition to allegations he was linked to Russian interference in the 2016 election.

“The May 17, 2017 [appointment] order was worded categorically in order to permit its release without confirming specific investigations involving specific individuals,” Rosenstein wrote in the Aug. 2, 2017 memo. “The following allegations were within the scope of the Investigation at the time of your appointment and are within the scope of the Order: … Allegations that Paul Manafort: Committed a crime or crimes by colluding with Russian government officials with respect to the Russian government’s efforts to interfere with the 2016 election for President of the United States, in violation of United States law. Committed a crime or crimes arising out of payments he received from the Ukrainian government before and during the tenure of President Viktor

Large chunks of the text of the three-page “scope” memo placed in public court files Monday were blacked out because they contain classified and sensitive law enforcement information, prosecutors said. However, those portions appear to identify various subjects and topics Mueller was authorized to investigate at the outset of the investigation.

Prosecutors also said Rosenstein — who has sometimes been the focus of Trump’s ire — gave a specific go-ahead for Manafort’s indictment and Mueller’s other critical moves in the probe.

“Every key step in this case — including the investigative path and the Indictment itself — has been authorized by the Acting Attorney General through ongoing consultation,” Mueller’s team wrote in a brief opposing Manafort’s bid to throw out the D.C. case.

The new disclosures about the Justice Department’s internal handling of the Manafort investigation came in response to a motion Manafort’s lawyers filed last month in U.S. District Court in Washington asking to have the criminal charges pending against him there thrown out on the grounds that Mueller’s appointment was defective and that he exceeded his authority in going after Manafort.

Manafort’s legal team also filed a lawsuit earlier this year challenging Mueller’s authority to prosecute him in any legal venue. Judge Amy Berman Jackson is scheduled to hold a hearing on that suit Wednesday.

Manafort and former Trump campaign aide Rick Gates were first indicted in Washington last October on charges of money laundering, failing to report foreign bank accounts and failing to register as foreign agents in connection with their Ukraine-related work. In February, Mueller’s prosecutors brought additional bank and tax fraud charges against the pair in federal court in Alexandria, Virginia. The bank-account reporting charges were also effectively moved to the Virginia case.

Soon thereafter, Gates agreed to plead guilty and cooperate with Mueller’s team.

Rosenstein said in congressional testimony last December that he is carefully monitoring Mueller’s probe and is kept aware of any developments. However, he did not offer many of the details contained in the Monday court filing. Rosenstein was also vague about whether he expanded Mueller’s authority in any way since he was appointed last May.

However, the new court filing seeks to downplay the notion that Mueller is a rogue operator roving far and wide in search of crimes to prosecute.

“The Appointment Order validly defines the Special Counsel’s jurisdiction, and the indictment in this case falls well within the Special Counsel’s authority,” Mueller’s team wrote. They also revealed that before the tax-related charges were brought, lawyers in the Justice Department’s Tax Division approved them, and before the foreign-lobbying charges were filed, attorneys in Justice’s National Security Division signed off.

Prosecutors also pushed back against Manafort’s argument that he would have never been prosecuted if Mueller wasn’t brought in as a special counsel, although they did not explicitly reject the possibility that Manafort’s role in the Trump campaign and the allegations of Russian interference led the Justice Department to dust off allegations that prosecutors had previously put on the back burner.

“Manafort’s invitation to speculate about what may have transpired if the Special Counsel never pursued these matters is untenable,” prosecutors wrote. “It would require a court not only to review the record of this case or the factual approval of the DOJ chain of command, but also to look backwards at what facts were already known to agents and attorneys and what steps were already underway, and then to imagine how quickly other attorneys and other offices would have pursued the investigations, how they would have prioritized cases competing for their attention, and what evidence they would have uncovered. … An inquiry of this nature would impose tremendous costs on the criminal justice system.”

Manafort is expected to bring a similar motion in connection with the Virginia charges, on which he is set to face trial July 10. The trial on the Washington charges is set for Sept. 17.

Guess Who Cleared/Exonerated Manafort 8 Years Ago Of The Crime He’s Being Charged With Now?

Federal prosecutors said to be investigating lobbyist Tony Podesta after special counsel referral

Federal prosecutors said to be investigating lobbyist Tony Podesta after special counsel referral

  • Federal prosecutors in New York are following a referral from special counsel Robert Mueller’s office, NBC News reports.
  • The individuals being investigated include former lobbyist Tony Podesta, former Minnesota Republican Rep. Vin Weber and former Obama White House Counsel Greg Craig.

Robert Mueller

Robert Mueller

Federal prosecutors are investigating former lobbyist Tony Podesta, former Rep. Vin Weber, R-Minn., and former Obama White House Counsel Greg Craig, NBC News confirmed, citing multiple sources familiar with the matter.

CNN first reported the existence of the investigation.

Prosecutors for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York opened the investigation following a referral from the office of special counsel Robert Mueller, the sources told NBC.

NBC previously reported that Mueller had been looking into Podesta and his Democratic-leaning lobbying firm as part of its broader investigation into the finances of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.

Tony Podesta is the chairman of the Podesta Group. His brother, John Podesta, was the campaign chairman for Hillary Clinton and is not currently affiliated with the lobbying firm. He is also not part of the investigation.

A representative for Tony Podesta declined to comment to CNBC.

“Better Bring Our Own Guns” – Portland Antifa Plotting “Direct Confrontation” At Pro-Trump Rally”

Sooner Or Later one of these confrontations is going to end truly catastrophically and will be used for further calls for gun bans. This Must Be Put An End To.

                                            …Freedom Rider

__________________________________________

“Better Bring Our Own Guns” – Portland Antifa Plotting “Direct Confrontation” At Pro-Trump Rally”

Antifa is also calling for militant antifascist resistance against Patriot Prayer.

A violent Antifa cell based in Portland, Oregon is planning a “direct confrontation” with participants in a pro-Trump rally next Saturday, according to a call to action on the leftist website It’s Going Down.
“Rose City Antifa has continued their great work of doxxing the Portland area Proud Boys involved in this violence, and is also calling for militant antifascist resistance against Patriot Prayer,” reads the posting first reported by Cassandra Fairbanks of the Gateway Pundit.

The Rose City Antifa group notably clashed with members of Patriot Prayer and the pro-Trump “Proud Boys” in early June, which resulted in a viral video of a member of Antifa being knocked out during a melee started by the violent “resistance” group.

A spokesperson for Rose City Antifa told It’s Going Down said that the group plans to “show that the community will not allow violent nationalist opportunists to threaten our city and target our people. We will overwhelm them both by force of numbers and commitment to defending our community. Whatever it takes.”

As Fairbanks notes, the call to action urges members to engage in “direct confrontation” to “eliminate” the conservative groups’ ability to hold rallies.

“Better bring our own guns too”

Journalist Tim Pool noted a Reddit discussion in the “Anarchism” subreddit in which Antifa members discuss arming themselves ahead of the event.

“Only thing I’m worried about is some nut with a gun and a bunch of bullets,” says one user, to which another replied “Better bring our own guns too just to be safe.”

Tim Pool

@Timcast

August 4th in Portland is already sounding like it is going to get really bad.

Activists call for bringing guns in preparation for escalation.

________________________________________________

During the June “Battle of Portland,” police recovered knives and other weapons, as well as bear mace.

Last April, 21 people were arrested after violence broke out between Trump supporters and members of Antifa in downtown Berkeley – leading to several injuries and the recovery of weapons from Antifa which included knives and spiked poles.


Let’s hope we don’t see more of the same this Saturday in Portland – especially gunshot victims.

Treason in America? The gallows. The last big treason trial. Is it the model?

15 Minutes. You need to hear this…  Lest We Forget!

Freedom Rider…

___________________________________________

 

Why are House Republicans extending DACA for a year and expanding asylum laws?

Why are House Republicans extending DACA for a year and expanding asylum laws?

C/O Liberty Alliance

By Printus LeBlanc

http://dailytorch.com/2018/07/why-are-house-republicans-extending-daca-for-a-year-and-expanding-asylum-laws/

Why does the Republican establishment insist on losing? The economy is booming, proving all the naysayers wrong, the polling shows the majority of the nation, conservative and liberal, are more in line with the President’s immigration policies than the Democrat Party’s, and finally, the Democrat Party is running to the left of Marx for the upcoming midterm election. What could stop the Republicans from maintaining control of the House? GOP leadership, that’s who.

A little more than a month ago, the House of Representatives voted on two immigration bills. The more conservative bill from Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) was able to garner 193 votes, with no help from Republican leadership. When the compromise bill came up for a vote, it was heavily whipped. The bill only got 121 votes, embarrassing Republican leadership as it was sure amnesty was the way to go.

President Donald Trump watched House leadership embarrass themselves and stated, “Republicans should stop wasting their time on immigration until after we elect more Senators and Congressmen/women in November. Dems are just playing games, have no intention of doing anything to solve this decade’s old problem. We can pass great legislation after the Red Wave.”

It seemed like immigration was put on the back burner until the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security got involved.

Last week the subcommittee voted on funding the Department of Homeland Security. Multiple amendments were added, but a few are going to erase the Southern Border. Anyone that is versed in the immigration issue knows the current crisis is due to asylum claims. These are not legitimate asylum claims; people are not being persecuted because of their religion or race, they are fleeing their home nations because big central governments have ruined the economies. But amnesty proponents have trained illegals to say the magic word “persecution.”

Once the person gets in, it is almost impossible to get them out, and if anyone knows this, it is the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security. Subcommittee Chairman Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.) gave his support for a Democrat amendment that allows “violence” to be an excuse for asylum. The amendment reverses the current Department of Justice policy of following the asylum law.

There is not one nation south of Texas that does not have a violence problem. The amendment essentially gives amnesty to tens of millions of illegal immigrants that are not even here yet.

The committee didn’t stop there. As this Congress has proven, nothing is more important than amnesty. An amendment was also passed to extend the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program for another year. Not sure Republicans on the committee campaigned on a message of rewarding bad behavior and open borders.

As if DACA and allowing anyone to claim asylum wasn’t bad enough, the committee also refused to defund sanctuary cities. Cities that let criminal illegal immigrants onto the street to commit rape, assault, and murder are getting rewarded by GOP leadership. Whose side are they on anyway?

The mainstream media and GOP establishment are already trying to spin the bill as a win. Look $5 billion in funding for the wall. Of course, building a wall is meaningless if it is full of loopholes. If the amendments are allowed to stand, the wall will do nothing, and be nothing more than a bribe to get the President’s signature on a funding bill.

The American people spoke loudly and clearly in November of 2016. They are tired of illegal immigration, and they are tired or rewarding bad behavior, and the GOP does this. If the GOP loses the House this fall, it will not be because of President Trump. It will be because it has driven the base home with its incessant pandering the illegal immigrant community, which can’t vote by the way. President Trump must let it be known he will veto the legislation that came out of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security. It is a violation of the promises he made to the people that supported him.

Printus LeBlanc is the Legislative Director at Americans for Limited Government.

Bankrupt Philadelphia plunders its property owners for cash

 

Bankrupt Philadelphia plunders its property owners for cash

Like a lot of major cities in the United States, Philadelphia is in pretty rough financial condition.

One of the city’s biggest problems is its woefully underfunded public pension, which has a multi-billion dollar funding gap.

In 2001, Philadelphia’s pension fund was still in decent shape with a funding level of 77%, meaning that it had sufficient assets to meet 77% of its long-term obligations.

By 2017 the funding level had dropped to less than 50%.

Part of this is just blatant mismanagement; while most of the market soared in 2016, for example, Philadelphia’s pension fund lost about $150 million on its investments, roughly 3.17% of its capital.

It’s interesting that, along the way, the city has actually tried to fix the problem. Between 2001 and 2017, the amount of money that the city contributed to the pension fund actually increased by 230%.

Yet despite increasing contributions to the fund, the fund’s solvency level keeps shrinking.

Mayor Jim Kenny summed up the grim situation in his budget address last year:

The City’s annual pension contribution has grown by over 230 percent since fiscal year 2001. . . These increasing pension costs have caused us to cut important public services while the pension fund’s health has grown weaker. In fact, our pension fund has actually dropped from 77 percent funded to less than 50 percent funded during the same time our contributions were so rapidly increasing.

So, desperate for revenue, the local government has been relying on an old tactic to get their hands on every spare penny they can.

The city of Philadelphia owns the local gas company– Philadelphia Gas Works (PGW). It’s essentially a local government monopoly.

And over the last few years, PGW developed an automated system to comb its billing records, find delinquent accounts, and file a lien on those properties.

If you’re not familiar with real estate law, a ‘lien’ is a formally-registered security interest in which your property serves as collateral for a debt.

When you borrow money from the bank to buy a home, for example, the bank registers a lien over your home for the value of the mortgage.

The lien prevents you from selling the home until you satisfy the debt. It also means that if you don’t pay the debt, the lienholder (the bank, or the gas company) can seize the property.

In PGW’s case, the gas company is filing liens over people’s properties due to unpaid gas bills for as little as $300.

There is essentially zero due process here. It’s not like the gas company has to go in front a jury and prove that there’s an unsatisfied debt.

They just have their automated system file some papers, and, poof, the lien is registered.

So someone could have their home encumbered for a $300 late bill that ended up being an administrative error.

More importantly, it’s curious why the gas company is filing a lien against the property… because it’s entirely possible that the delinquent customer isn’t even the property owner.

Let’s say you’re a landlord and renting out your investment property to a tenant… and the tenant doesn’t pay his gas bill: PGW will put a lien on your property, even though it’s not your bill.

Even worse, you wouldn’t even know about it, because PGW would be sending the late notices to the tenant… not to you.

At that point it turns into a total bureaucratic nightmare.

If you’re lucky enough to even find out about it, you call PGW to try and get the lien removed.

But (according to court documents), PGW tells angry landlords that they have no control over the lien process, and tell people to file a complaint with the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission.

But then the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission tells you that they have no jurisdiction over liens in Philadelphia, and that you should talk to the utility company.

Classic government bureaucracy. You just get bounced around between various departments and nothing ever gets resolved from a problem that you didn’t even create.

Well, a bunch of landlords finally had enough of this nonsense, so they got together and sued the city in federal court.

It seemed like a slam dunk case. Why should property owners be held liable for the actions of their tenants?

If tenants don’t pay for their own gas, the tenants should be held responsible… not the property owners.

Common sense, right?

Wrong. The landlords lost the case.

Two weeks ago the US District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania ruled that the City of Philadelphia was well within its rights to hold property owners responsible… and to file a lien on the property without even notifying the owner to begin with.

This is a pretty strong reminder of how low governments will sink when they become financially desperate.

Why Wait for it to Happen? The Media Now Invents News Stories From the Future

Why Wait for it to Happen? The Media Now Invents News Stories From the Future

STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
By Joe Jarvis – July 30, 2018
fake stamp

A new pandemic disease could kill almost a billion people, a Metro article warns. The only problem: the disease is made up.

A fake terrorist organization created a fake pathogen, the effects of which were monitored via a fake reality simulation. That’s today’s news.

By the end of the simulation in May, representing 20 months after the start of the outbreak, there were 150 million dead around the world – and no vaccine. The researchers say that the simulation would have ended with up to 900 million dead, nearly 10% of the world’s population.

Eric Toner of the Johns Hopkins Center for Global Health Security says the world was ‘lucky’ the SARS outbreak wasn’t worse.

Clade X was designed to spread about as easily and kill a similar percentage to SARS, Toner says.

Go over to the New York Times, and they have run two articles about how Trump lost, as well as won, the 2020 election. The election is over two years away.

Both articles used Elizabeth Warren as Trump’s challenger, which to me is more terrifying than the fake pandemic.

With neither a recession nor a major war to run against, Democrats sought instead to cast the election in starkly moral terms. Yet by Election Day, the charge that Mr. Trump is morally or intellectually unfit for office had been made so often that it had lost most of its former edge among swing voters.

Or:

Exit polls showed disillusionment across the swing states that Trump won four years ago and lost this year, including Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. In a sign of the country’s changing political map, he held on to Ohio and Iowa, two relatively old and white states — but became the first Republican since 1992 to lose Georgia.

It almost feels like the news is one of those kids’ chapter books where you get to choose the ending. Even when the media isn’t running quite literally made-up news articles, news readers can choose their own news. They just have to decide what they want to hear, and visit the proper publication.

My-Own-Little-Bubble Media

If you want 24/7 something something something Russia, just head over to CNN. I prefer James Bond movies for my cold war propaganda since it’s more interesting, and about as realistic, as CNN.

If you are into controlled opposition, go over to infowars.com to read the 10 Signs That America is in Much Worse Trouble Than We Thought. This includes mothers dying during childbirth and people taking advantage of disaster victims. Child sexual predators actually take up two spots on the list. What a worldview to wake up to in the morning!

Not that you should stay in a bubble of false-positivity either, but that would likely be better than drinking up all this fear-porn.

The media isn’t really reporting the news that matters anyway, so why bother bringing yourself down?

Like everything else, it is about moderation. Is there anything I can do about terrorists potentially unleashing a biological weapon on the world? Nope.

But can I shield myself from the next recession? Yep!

That is why we like to share Sovereignman articles here at The Daily Bell. They track the real state of the economy, which obviously is not always rainbows and butterflies. But then they empower you with a multitude of free resources to make a Plan B. Bad things are going to happen, but they don’t have to affect you and your loved ones.

That’s also why The Daily Bell gives away a free guide to every subscriber about how to form and execute a two-year plan to accomplish your goals. Individuals are not pinballs in a machine outside of our control. We can affect our own destiny.

But it seems like most media is just trying to sell headlines with fear, or sell headlines with confirmation bias.

In my experience, things are never as bad when you get out there in the real world and start talking to people.

Yesterday I went to a community market day in New Hampshire. A few dozen people met-up on private property to trade and sell unregulated prepared food, veggies, meat, coffee beans, drinks, and more. They get around regulations by forming clubs, selling shares of livestock, and using other clever loopholes that empower them to run small-scale businesses.

And at least four people there are running for state rep in order to make it easier and safer to run large-scale businesses in New Hampshire by repealing restrictive regulations. They are forward-looking but aren’t waiting for a critical mass to live as they see fit.

Ironically, another biased New York Times article didn’t hold true for the demographics of this event.

New Hampshire, like its neighbors Vermont and Maine, is nearly all white. This has posed an array of problems for new arrivals, who often find themselves isolated and alone, without the comfort and support of a built-in community.

Of course, this is absurdly racist. Why on earth does your community need to have the same skin color as you? If you are looking for a support system in New Hampshire, all you have to do is join the liberty community.

We can’t ignore problems that need solving, but as we know from psychology, positive reinforcement is more powerful than negative reinforcement. So if we focus on the amazing things happening in the world, that is what will proliferate. You can do this without sticking your head in the sand.

For instance, there is a serious problem with drug addiction in America. The drug war and government funding for opioids play large roles in this problem. Once we understand that though, our focus should shift to solutions. States have been empowered by legalizing cannabis, and new research unveils the potential for psilocybin mushrooms to help people overcome addiction.

See the difference in the approach? One focuses only on the negatives, while the other acknowledges the negatives, but focuses on the solutions.

As for the fake 2020-election headlines, why waste your time? It is basically just part of the incoherent shouting match between the hard left and right. Each is desperate to win, so they stroke themselves with fantasies for how future elections will go.

What would be truly amazing is if by the time 2020 rolls around, people are so self-empowered that they give hardly a thought to which dinosaur will occupy an old house in DC.

And that is the future that we are actually trending towards. Individuals are becoming more empowered by the day.

A letter to America: WWG1WGA

God bless them is right…

DARPA has an ambitious $1.5 billion plan to reinvent electronics

DARPA has an ambitious $1.5 billion plan to reinvent electronics

The US military agency is worried the country could lose its edge in semiconductor chips with the end of Moore’s Law.

Last year, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which funds a range of blue-sky research efforts relevant to the US military, launched a $1.5 billion, five-year program known as the Electronics Resurgence Initiative (ERI) to support work on advances in chip technology. The agency has just unveiled the first set of research teams selected to explore unproven but potentially powerful approaches that could revolutionize US chip development and manufacturing.

Hardware innovation has taken something of a back seat to software advances in recent years, and that bothers the US military for several reasons.

End of an era

At the top of the list is that Moore’s Law, which holds that the number of transistors fitted on a chip doubles roughly every two years, is reaching its limits (see “Moore’s Law is dead. Now what?”). That could stymie future advances in electronics that the military relies on, unless new architectures and designs can allow progress in chip performance to continue.

There are also worries about the rising cost of designing integrated circuits, and about increased foreign—for which read “Chinese”—investment in semiconductor design and manufacturing (see “China wants to make the chips that will add AI to any gadget”).

The ERI’s budget represents around a fourfold increase in DARPA’s typical annual spending on hardware. Initial projects reflect the initiative’s three broad areas of focus: chip design, architecture, and materials and integration.

One project aims to radically reduce the time it takes to create a new chip design, from years or months to just a day, by automating the process with machine learning and other tools so that even relatively inexperienced users can create high-quality designs.

“No one yet knows how to get a new chip design completed in 24 hours safely without human intervention,” says Andrew Kahng of the University of California, San Diego, who’s leading one of the teams involved. “This is a fundamentally new approach we’re developing.”

“We’re trying to engineer the craft brewing revolution in electronics,” says William Chappell, the head of the DARPA office that manages the ERI program. The agency hopes that the automated design tools will inspire smaller companies without the resources of giant chip makers, just as specialized brewers in the US have innovated alongside the beer industry’s giants.

New chip materials and clever designs

If we’re going to move beyond Moore’s Law, though, the chances are that radically new materials, and new ways of integrating computing power and memory, will be needed. Shifting data between memory components that store it and processors that act on it sucks up energy and creates one of the biggest hurdles to boosting processing power.

Another ERI project will explore ways in which novel circuit integration schemes can eliminate, or at least greatly reduce, the need to shift data around. The ultimate goal is to effectively embed computing power in memory, which could lead to dramatic increases in performance.

On the chip architecture front, DARPA wants to create hardware and software that can be reconfigured in real time to handle more general tasks or specialized ones such as specific artificial-intelligence applications. Today, multiple chips are needed, driving up complexity and cost.

Some of DARPA’s efforts overlap with areas already being worked on extensively in industry. An example is a project to develop 3-D system-on-chip technology, which aims to extend Moore’s Law by using new materials such as carbon nanotubes, and smarter ways of stacking and partitioning electronic circuits. Chappell acknowledges the overlap, but he says the agency’s own work is “probably the biggest effort to make [the approach] real.”

Not nearly enough

Some think DARPA and other arms of the US government that support electronics research, such as the Department of Energy, should be spending even more to spur innovation.

Erica Fuchs, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University who’s an expert in public policy related to emerging technologies, says that as chip development has focused on more specific applications, big companies have lost their appetite for spending money on collaborative research efforts just as Moore’s Law is faltering.

Fuchs praises the ERI but thinks the US government’s overall approach to supporting electronics innovation is “easily an order of magnitude below” what’s needed to address the challenges we’re facing. Let’s hope the grassroots chip design movement that DARPA is trying to foment will go some way toward closing the gap. 

Australian bishop convicted of sex abuse cover-up resigns

Australian bishop convicted of sex abuse cover-up resigns

By NICOLE WINFIELD and ROD MCGUIRK

https://apnews.com/amp/eb96fb3a70b9415884c945711fb5b783?__twitter_impression=true

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis on Monday accepted the resignation of an Australian archbishop convicted in criminal court of covering up the sexual abuse of children by a priest, taking action after coming under mounting pressure from ordinary Catholics, priests and even the Australian prime minister.

It was the second major announcement of a sex abuse-related resignation in as many days, after Francis’ dramatic sanctioning and demotion this weekend of a prominent U.S. cardinal. The move suggests Francis is keen to clean house before he heads to Dublin next month for a big Catholic family rally were the sex abuse scandal is likely to dominate the agenda given Ireland’s devastating history with predator priests and the bishops who covered for them.

In Australia, Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson was convicted in May and sentenced to a year’s detention for failing to report to police the repeated abuse of two altar boys by a pedophile priest, the late Rev. James Fletcher, in the Hunter Valley region north of Sydney during the 1970s. He became the highest-ranking Catholic cleric ever convicted in a criminal court of abuse cover-up.

Wilson, who denied the accusations, had immediately stepped aside after he was convicted but refused to resign pending an appeal. As recently as last week, though, Wilson acknowledged that calls for his sacking were increasing, and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull added his voice to the chorus July 19 in urging Francis to fire him.

Even one of Fletcher’s victims spoke out: Australian media published a letter last week from Peter Gogarty to Francis urging him to remove Wilson. “Imagine if you can, your own childhood, your Catholic upbringing and the character-destroying belief that you were engaged in the worst of mortal sins,” Gogarty wrote the pope. “I am now 57 years old and continue to struggle with the burden forced upon me.”

In a one-line statement Monday, the Vatican said Francis had accepted Wilson’s resignation. At 67, he is well under the normal retirement age for bishops of 75.

In a statement issued by the archdiocese, Wilson said he had submitted his resignation to Francis of his own will on July 20 — a day after Turnbull’s call — and said he hoped his decision would help abuse victims and the rest of the Catholic community heal.

“I had hoped to defer this decision until after the appeal process had been completed,” Wilson said. “However, there is just too much pain and distress being caused by my maintaining the office of archbishop.”

Francis’ decision to accept the resignation is significant given he has previously refrained from taking action against accused bishops that might be perceived as prejudicing outcomes in civil or criminal cases.

Another Australian prelate, Cardinal George Pell, for example, has been on leave as the Vatican’s finance czar while he faces criminal trial in Australia on accusations of sexual abuse. But Pell, who denies the charges, remains a cardinal, head of the Vatican’s economy secretariat and a member of Francis’ core group of nine cardinal advisers.

Francis, though, is under increasing pressure to sanction bishops who have abused, botched handling abuse cases or otherwise covered them up. There are calls for a full-fledged church investigation in the United States, and criminal probes are underway in Chile as the next phase of the abuse scandal — accountability for bishops who failed to protect their flocks from abusive priests — is gaining momentum.

The issue has taken on new urgency with the #MeToo movement and the growing recognition that even adults can be victims of sexual abuse when there is an abuse of power in a relationship: The Associated Press reported recently that nuns were starting to come forward to denounce their abuse at the hands of priests and bishops.

In the United States, bishops and cardinals are coming under fire for failing to reveal what they knew and when about the abuse of adult seminarians and minors allegedly committed by Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington.

Francis on Saturday accepted McCarrick’s resignation as cardinal, and imposed on him unprecedented penalties for a cardinal even before his canonical trial is completed, including living a lifetime of penance and prayer and living isolated from others.

It was apparently a little-kept secret that McCarrick, 88, invited seminarians to his beach house and into his bed, suggesting that some in the U.S. hierarchy knew of his misconduct but turned a blind eye. In addition, a group of concerned American Catholics travelled to the Vatican in 2000 to warn officials of McCarrick’s penchant for young men, but he was appointed Washington archbishop and made a cardinal in 2001 regardless.

In Chile, meanwhile, prosecutors recently summoned the archbishop of Santiago, Cardinal Ricardo Ezzati, to appear in court and testify about his role in the alleged cover-up of years of abuse by his top deputy, the Rev. Oscar Munoz.

Munoz has admitted to abusing at least one minor, and confessed to church authorities in December. Prosecutors, however, uncovered reports of at least four more victims abused by Munoz that were documented by the Santiago archdiocese, including some of his young relatives.

Ezzati has said he knew nothing of the abuse before Munoz came forward. He is due to testify Aug. 21.

Ezzati had already offered his resignation when he turned 75 last year, and was among the active Chilean bishops who offered to resign en masse in May when they were summoned by Francis for a collective dressing down for their disastrous handling of abuse allegations.

But Francis hasn’t moved on Ezzati’s resignation yet, presumably waiting to find the right candidate to take over the leadership of Chile’s most important archdiocese.

Turnbull, the Australian prime minister, said Monday he was pleased Wilson had resigned, albeit belatedly. “There is no more important responsibility for community and church leaders than the protection of children,” he said in a statement.

___

McGuirk contributed from Canberra, Australia.

Incoming Mexican President Vows to Cooperate With Trump

by Rev. Austin Miles

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Mexico’s president-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador pose for a picture before a meeting in Mexico City, Mexico July 13, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso

This columnist waited several days to see if the ‘main stream media’ MSM, would release this very important story that makes President Trump look good. They would NOT publish this. No surprise. So here it is.

President Elect of Mexico, Andre Manuel Lopez Obrador, who will take office December 1st, sent a seven page letter to President Trump this month regarding a new relationship between Mexico and the U.S. Mr. Obrador has already talked with President Trump on the phone with a follow-up by our terrific Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo who visited him to begin opening lines of communication between the two countries.

The seven page letter Mr. Obrador sent to President Trump stating that his incoming administration’s aim is to start a new chapter in the relationship with Mexico and outlined his hopes of the two countries working together to improve security at the border and discourage Mexican migration.

Obrador stated in his letter that the incoming administration’s goal is to “start a new chapter in the relationship between Mexico and the United States based on mutual respect.”

Pompeo said that he and Obrador discussed how the two countries could advance common goals on economy, trade, as well as resolve border issues.

“I am encouraged by the fact that we both know how to do what we say,” Mr. Obador wrote in his letter, “and we both have faced adversity with success. We manage to put our citizens at the center and displace the establishment.”

Mr. Obrador singled out migration, economic development and security as the primary areas he would like to collaborate with President Trump. He believes economic development of Mexico and other Central American countries would improve conditions in those areas and dissuade people from believing they must flee to the U.S.

“My government is wiling to present to our congress, the initiative and budgetary proposal to contribute economic resources and experiences in this joint effort,” he wrote.

The president-elect also wants to jump start talks of a modernization of the North American Free Trade Agreement between the United States, Mexico and Canada. These talks began last year after Trump said NAFTA must be reworked to better suit America’s interest.

Last week, President Donald Trump said he had “very good discussions” with Mr. Obrador and may look at negotiating a separate trade deal with Mexico.

Now it can be seen why the so-called main stream media had desperately attempted to keep this quiet.  President Donald J. Trump is the ultimate president. He has accomplished more in his short time in office than all the other presidents that have occupied The Oval Office.

He has fulfilled every promise he has made so far. He is the only U.S. President to visit numerous heads of state and dictators and dialogue with them. He will not nor cannot back down. He is tough keeps his word and stands firm, something that puzzles the world since Obama appeared to work for the enemies of America. President Trump works for the American people.

He has stabilized the U.S. economy, has stood firm to those world leaders who expected him to back down, like Obama, who bowed deeply to Muslim leaders and actually apologized for America. (?)

The relationship between Mexico and America has been shaky…until now thanks to our elected president, put in the Oval Office by MILLIONS of voters.

The Democrat Communists constantly work to bring disrespect to our duly elected president, yet, thanks to citizen journalists and internet news services, the public receives TRUTHFUL news. Wherever you read this column you can trust the news on that site to give you an accurate account about what is REALLY going on.

The demoncrats hate it when Trump is recognized for doing what a president has sworn to do. They want to weaken, then overthrow this government to put America under Communist control. We won’t let that happen since Trump is our president, and most of the millions of people in the United States are armed and ready to lock and load.

ANALYZING TODAY’S NEWS FOR TOMORROW’S HISTORY

Where Churches Have Become Temples of Cheese, Fitness and Eroticism

the Holy Bible!

King James Version,
Galatians 6:7

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

FR……

_________________________________________

Where Churches Have Become Temples of Cheese, Fitness and Eroticism

Posted 8:45 p.m. yesterday
Updated 8:49 p.m. yesterday

https://www.wral.com/where-churches-have-become-temples-of-cheese-fitness-and-eroticism/17733092/

MONTREAL — For generations, parishioners whispered their sins in the dark wooden confessional booths of Notre-Dame-du-Perpétuel-Secours, an imposing Roman Catholic church in Montreal.

But on a recent day, the edgy Quebec comedian Sugar Sammy was being filmed inside one of the booths, the latest intimate celebrity confessional on the talk show “Y’a du monde à messe,” or “The Church Is Packed.”2

“I made a sex tape in order to be famous, because I thought it was the path to glory,” Sammy said with mock seriousness, as the camera zoomed in on his face, seen from behind a grill. “It didn’t work because no one watched it,” he continued. “I was the only person on the tape.”

A large audience gathered in the church roared with laughter.

The once-hallowed space, now illuminated with a giant pink chandelier, has been reinvented as the Théâtre Paradoxe at a cost of nearly $3 million in renovations. It is now host to, among other events, Led Zeppelin cover bands, Zumba lessons and fetish parties, as well as the talk show that Sammy appeared on.

And it is one of dozens of churches across Quebec that have been transformed — into university reading rooms, luxury condominiums, cheese emporiums and upmarket fitness centers.

At another event at the church, devoted to freewheeling dance, dozens of barefoot amateur dancers filled the space and undulated in a trancelike state in front of its former altar amid drums and chanting. Two men in tank tops clasped hands and twirled each other. A woman in blue juggled three white balls, putting one on her head.

Several wooden pews were recast to build a handsome bar for alcohol-fueled banquets. The former sacristy where priests prepared for Communion is now a dressing room fit for a diva.

While the church has welcomed a “Crucifix Halloween” party featuring barely dressed, leather-clad dancers gyrating in front of a lit-up cross, its director, Gérald St-Georges, a Roman Catholic, stressed that its main function was still sacred rather than profane. It teaches former addicts, juvenile delinquents and high-school dropouts technical theater skills so that they can enter the job market.2

“I don’t feel any taboo in transforming a church into a theater, as we are remaining true to the church’s mission of serving the community,” St-Georges said.

The radical makeovers of Quebec churches reflect the drastic decline of the Catholic Church in a majority-Catholic Canadian province, where 95 percent of the population went to Mass in the 1950s but only 5 percent do so today.

The sharp drop in church attendance, coupled with spiraling maintenance costs, has made heritage groups, architects and the church itself think creatively to conserve historic buildings at risk of being shutteredor demolished.

As of April, 547 churches in Quebec had been closed, sold or transformed, according to the Québec Religious Heritage Council.1

Throughout the centuries in Quebec, the church provided health and education, and dominated life. Towering old crosses still dot hills across the province, monuments to this past.

But the church also opposed divorce, censored books and bullied women to reproduce, and in the 1960s, a generation rose in revolt, a period known as “The Quiet Revolution.”1

St-Georges, 54, of the Théâtre Paradoxe, recalled being told that when his mother was ill and already had nine children, the local priest had insisted that she have a 10th: him. She died shortly thereafter.

“The clergy crossed the line into people’s private lives, so people rebelled,” he said, noting that although he worked in a former church, he no longer attended services.

Gérard Bouchard, an eminent historian and sociologist with the Université du Québec à Chicoutimi, noted that playfully subverting the original function of churches was the result of a deep distrust of religious authority.

“Feminism is very strong here,” he said, “and people remember what the church did to their mothers and grandmothers.”

Officials from Quebec’s Roman Catholic Church said the repurposing of churches was a matter of demographics and economic pragmatism, even as they acknowledged that it was often accompanied by heartbreak.

Christian Lépine, the archbishop of Montreal, noted that once a church had been deconsecrated and passed to private hands, the religious authorities could not control how it was used.3

“There is a sadness when a church is shuttered or transformed, but we have to accept reality,” he said.

The Église Saint-Mathias-Apôtre, in a working-class neighborhood of Montreal, once provided spiritual succor to pious factory workers. Today, it has been rebranded Le Chic Resto Pop, serving hearty chicken brochettes and catering to socially disadvantaged residents and bohemian artists, who can buy 60 meals for $20.1

Diners are greeted by the decorative tomb that once housed the ashes of a resident priest, though the church’s austere stained-glass windows were removed to let in sunlight and create a more secular space.

After a church has been selected for conversion, any human remains inside are exhumed and moved to a Catholic cemetery. Many architects seek to keep some original details, like crosses, in a nod to the buildings’ religious heritage.

While the church face-lifts have spawned little protest, not everyone is pleased.

After the local church in Sainte-Élizabeth-de-Warwick, a central Quebec town of 400 people, was transformed into an upmarket cheese company a few years ago, its owners decided to keep a small part of the structure as a functioning chapel for the community.

Some residents, however, refuse to attend Sunday Mass in a church where the former nave had been repurposed to store and ripen cheese.

Jean Phillipe Leblanc, 24, said his family had celebrated their baptisms, conformations and marriages there for generations, and, for them, repurposing the church was nothing less than a “sacrilege.”

But Jean Morin, the owner of La Fromagerie du Presbytere — who purchased the church for $1, invested $1.2 million to renovate it and has since won the Canadian Cheese Grand Prix — said the church’s transformation had saved the house of worship for future generations.

Every Friday, the fromagerie hosts dozens of people for cheese tastings, many more than the number who attend Sunday Mass. “Producing my cheese here is my idea of paradise,” Morin said. At the upmarket Saint Jude gym and spa in Montreal’s bourgeois-bohemian Plateau-Mont-Royal neighborhood, members show off their muscles in the church’s former chapel, forsake kneeling in favor of ashtanga yoga poses and luxuriate in an outdoor steamy bath in the shadow of the church’s imposing steeple. The church’s gothic windows look down incongruously on spinning bikes and a weight room.

Olivier Pratte, 31, an advertising copywriter who works out at the gym, noted that while his grandmother was religious, his parents’ and his generation were not.

“My grandmother is happy I spend time in a church,” he said, “even if I’m working my biceps and not my soul.”

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