You’ll remember that the hoax was pushed by the Democrats, their allies in the mainstream media, and the so-called “fact-checkers” for 2.5 years, until an investigation found that there was no corruption, and no collusion. Well, a new declassified document released by the Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe sheds so light on who was behind the hoax, and why that person pushed it.
EXCLUSIVE: Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe on Tuesday declassified documents that revealed former CIA Director John Brennan briefed former President Obama on Hillary Clinton’s purported “plan” to tie then-candidate Donald Trump to Russia as “a means of distracting the public from her use of a private email server” ahead of the 2016 presidential election, Fox News has learned.
Ratcliffe declassified Brennan’s handwritten notes – which were taken after he briefed Obama on the intelligence the CIA received – and a CIA memo, which revealed that officials referred the matter to the FBI for potential investigative action.
[…]The declassification comes after Ratcliffe, last week, shared newly-declassified information with the Senate Judiciary Committee which revealed that in September 2016, U.S. intelligence officials forwarded an investigative referral on Hillary Clinton purportedly approving “a plan concerning U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump and Russian hackers hampering U.S. elections” in order to distract the public from her email scandal.
That referral was sent to Comey and then-Deputy Assistant Director of Counterintelligence Peter Strzok.
I always include a summary of the key facts of the Trump-Russia collusion hoax in my posts, and fortunately, the Fox News article had one:
Meanwhile, last week, during a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Comey was asked whether he received an investigative referral on Clinton from 2016, but he said it didn’t “ring any bells.”
“You don’t remember getting an investigatory lead from the intelligence community? Sept. 7, 2016, U.S. intelligence officials forwarded an investigative referral to James Comey and Strzok regarding Clinton’s approval of a plan [about] Trump…as a means of distraction?” Graham asked Comey.
“That doesn’t ring any bells with me,” Comey said.
“That’s a pretty stunning thing that it doesn’t ring a bell,” Graham fired back. “You get this inquiry from the intelligence community to look at the Clinton campaign trying to create a distraction, accusing Trump of being a Russian agent or a Russian stooge.”
Graham questioned “how far-fetched is that,” citing the fact that Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee, through law firm Perkins Coie, hired Fusion GPS and ex-British intelligence officer Christopher Steele to author and compile information for the controversial and unverified anti-Trump dossier.
The Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee, through law firm Perkins Coie, hired Fusion GPS and ex-British intelligence officer Christopher Steele to author and compile information for the controversial and unverified anti-Trump dossier.
The dossier contains claims about alleged ties between Donald Trump and Russia that served as the basis for Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants obtained against former Trump campaign aide Carter Page.
So, if this report is true, Hillary Clinton is the source for the Trump-Russia collusion hoax, and Obama knew about it all along. It went right to the top, just like the IRS persecution of conservative organizations in Obama’s re-election year. Another story the mainstream media news ignored.
I remember how the mainstream news media, the Democrat party politicians, and the so-called “fact-checkers” all pushed the Trump-Russia collusion narrative. I don’t find Comey’s failure to remember very convincing.
A Senate committee released newly declassified documents that showed the Federal Bureau of Investigation was wary in early 2017 of a dossier compiled by ex-British spy Christopher Steele that helped stir a narrative, later debunked, that the Trump campaign had close ties to Russian intelligence.
The documents released Friday by the Senate Judiciary Committee included FBI notes from three days of interviews with a primary source of Mr. Steele who cast doubt on some of the dossier’s contents. FBI notes from the interview in early 2017 indicated that Mr. Steele’s source had told him information about Mr. Trump’s alleged sexual escapades was “rumor and speculation” that he was unable to confirm.
Also released were notes of a former high-level FBI agent, Peter Strzok, who wrote that Mr. Steele himself “may not be in a position to judge the reliability of his subsource network.’’
Reacting to a New York Times report in February 2017 that said the Trump campaign and people around the candidate had repeated contacts with Russian intelligence officials, Mr. Strzok wrote in the margins of a printed copy of the article that “we are unaware of any Trump advisors engaging in conversations with Russian intelligence officials.”
Document number two, also withheld from public view until now, takes apart a New York Times article written by Michael Schmidt, Mark Mazzetti, and Matt Apuzzo.
Comments made by then-FBI agent Peter Strzok undercut a litany of claims made in the Times article, which was entitled: “Trump Campaign Aides Had Repeated Contact With Russian Intelligence.”
Claim in NYT article: “Phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald J. Trump’s presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, according to four current and former American officials.”
Note by Strzok: “This statement is misleading and inaccurate as written. We have not seen evidence of any individuals in contact with Russians (both Governmental and non-Governmental)” and “There is no known intel affiliation, and little if any [government of Russia] affiliation[.] FBI investigation has shown past contact between [Trump campaign volunteer Carter] Page and the SVR [Foreign Intelligence Service of the Russian Federation], but not during his association with the Trump campaign.”
Claim in NYT article: “… one of the advisers picked up on the [intercepted] calls was Paul Manafort, who was Mr. Trump’s campaign chairman for several months …”
Note by Strzok: “We are unaware of any calls with any Russian government official in which Manafort was a party.”
Claim in NYT article: “The FBI has obtained banking and travel records …”
Note by Strzok: “We do not yet have detailed banking records.”
Claim in NYT article: “Officials would not disclose many details, including what was discussed on the calls, and how many of Trump’s advisers were talking to the Russians.”
Note by Strzok: “Again, we are unaware of ANY Trump advisers engaging in conversations with Russian intel officials” and “Our coverage has not revealed contact between Russian intelligence officers and the Trump team.”
Claim in NYT article: “The FBI asked the NSA to collect as much information as possible about the Russian operatives on the phone calls …”
Note by Strzok: “If they did we are not aware of those communications.”
Claim in NYT article: “The FBI has closely examined at least four other people close to Mr. Trump … Carter Page … Roger Stone… and Mr. Flynn.”
Note by Strzok: “We have not investigated Roger Stone.”
Claim by NYT: “Senior FBI officials believe … Christopher Steele … has a credible track record.”
Note by Strzok: “Recent interviews and investigation, however, reveal Steele may not be in a position to judge the reliability of subsource network.”
Claim by NYT: “The FBI’s investigation into Mr. Manafort began last spring .”
Note by Strzok: “This is inaccurate … our investigation of Manafort was opened in August 2016.”
Claim by NYT: “The bureau did not have enough evidence to obtain a warrant for a wiretap of Mr. Manafort’s communications, but it had the NSA closely scrutinize the communications of Ukrainian officials he had met.”
Note by Strzok: “This is inaccurate …”
Basically, everything the New York Times wrote was judged by Peter Strozk – the anti-Trump FBI adulterer – as inaccurate. Keep that in mind the next time you read something in the New York Times. It’s just fake news, from front to back, top to bottom. Every day. People read it for feelings – not for an accurate view of the world.
There is a nice re-cap of left-wing news sources trumpeting the Steel dossier as genuine in this Twitter thread. Make note of the names, and don’t trust these news sources in the future. CNN, MSNBC, Brian Stelter, Rachel Maddow, New York Magazine, Jonathan Chait, Catherine Rempell, Katy Tur, Mother Jones, David Corn, Newsweek, Slate, Rick Wilson, Joy Reid, Jennifer Rubin, Max Boot, Charles Blow, Seth Abramson, Matthew Dowd, Kurt Eichenwald, The Daily Beast, The New Yorker, etc.
The Federalist had some details about the source for the Steele dossier.
The Primary Subsource was in reality Steele’s sole source, a longtime Russian-speaking contractor for the former British spy’s company, Orbis Business Intelligence. In turn, the Primary Subsource had a group of friends in Russia. All of their names remain redacted. From the FBI interviews, it becomes clear that the Primary Subsource and his friends peddled warmed-over rumors and laughable gossip that Steele dressed up as formal intelligence memos.
On Twitter, I found a thread that presented a case that the source of the dossier was a PRESS SECRETARY. Not an intelligence agent. Not a “veteran spy”. A PRESS SECRETARY. I guess we’ll find out if this is correct soon.
Previously, I blogged about how the Steele dossier that was used to get permission to spy on the Trump campaign was paid for by Democrats. The latest news is that the Steele dossier contained Russian disinformation. So, instead of Trump colluding with Russians, it was actually the Democrats colluding with Russians to get a fake dossier to allow spying on the Trump campaign.
At some point in 2017, the precise month is not clear, the FBI obtained evidence that Russian operatives fed disinformation to former British spy Christopher Steele.
That stunning revelation came on Friday, and not through a leak, as did so many of the anti-Trump and pro-Steele stories that have come out since the dossier was published in January 2017.
Instead, the disclosure was the product of an intense GOP-led fact-finding campaign to force U.S. intelligence officials to declassify information that the FBI had on Steele and his notorious dossier.
Sens. Chuck Grassley and Ron Johnson, the two Republicans who jogged loose the new information, noted the disparity in the type of information that has leaked out of the Trump-Russia investigation in the three-plus years since it began.
“For years, the public was fed a healthy diet of leaks, innuendo and false information to imply that President Trump and his campaign were part of a Russian conspiracy to spread disinformation,” they said in a statement upon the release of three footnotes from the Justice Department inspector general’s (IG) report on the FBI’s surveillance of the Trump campaign.
The previously-classified footnotes said that an organization not identified in the IG report provided the FBI evidence that Russian operatives fed disinformation that wound up in the dossier.
The disclosure is another stunning blow to the reputation of the FBI, which made Steele’s dossier a “central and essential” component of its surveillance warrants against Carter Page.
Actually, the Steele dossier was the ONLY source for the FISA warrant that allowed the Obama administration to spy on the Trump campaign.
Now I want to review who paid for the Steele dossier that contained Russian disinformation.
The Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee helped fund research that resulted in a now-famous dossier containing allegations about President Trump’s connections to Russia and possible coordination between his campaign and the Kremlin, people familiar with the matter said.
Marc E. Elias, a lawyer representing the Clinton campaign and the DNC, retained Fusion GPS, a Washington firm, to conduct the research.
After that, Fusion GPS hired dossier author Christopher Steele, a former British intelligence officer with ties to the FBI and the U.S. intelligence community, according to those people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
Elias and his law firm, Perkins Coie, retained the company in April 2016 on behalf of the Clinton campaign and the DNC. Before that agreement, Fusion GPS’s research into Trump was funded by an unknown Republican client during the GOP primary.
The Clinton campaign and the DNC, through the law firm, continued to fund Fusion GPS’s research through the end of October 2016, days before Election Day.
The FBI and DOJ didn’t tell the FISA court about who was funding the Steele dossier when they applied for the warrant. Because if they had, they would have been denied the warrant. No FISA court would approve surveillance of the Republican party if the sole basis for the warrant was uncorroborated opposition research funded by the Democrat party. In order to get the FISA warrant, the request had to be written in such a way that the funding of the Steele dossier was not revealed, and Steele was not declared to be the source of the news articles used as corroborating evidence.
So, recently the Democrats decided to collude with a disgruntled CIA analyst and registered Democrat, in order to help him to make a hearsay complaint against President Trump. The mainstream media then colluded with the Democrats in order to promote the hearsay complaint to their audiences. Let’s retrace the major steps of the story, and then see how it affected Trump’s fundraising numbers.
BREAKING: The whistleblower is a registered Democrat & CIA analyst who was detailed before the 2016 election to the Obama White House,where he worked on the NSC’s Ukraine desk & met w anti-Trump Ukrainian officials before being sent packing by the Trump NSC & becoming disgruntled.
Between May 2018 and August 2019, the intelligence community secretly eliminated a requirement that whistleblowers provide direct, first-hand knowledge of alleged wrongdoings. This raises questions about the intelligence community’s behavior regarding the August submission of a whistleblower complaint against President Donald Trump. The new complaint document no longer requires potential whistleblowers who wish to have their concerns expedited to Congress to have direct, first-hand knowledge of the alleged wrongdoing that they are reporting.
So, since they dropped the requirement for first-hand knowledge, the complainant could expedite to Congress without it.
The second interesting point is that the Democrats lied about the contents of the phone call, and had to walk back their lies.
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) added words that were not spoken by President Donald Trump while reading from a transcript of the callbetween Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during a House Intelligence Committee hearing on Sept. 26.
[…]Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio) later called Schiff out.
“While the chairman was speaking I had someone text me, ‘is he just making this up?’” Turner said. “And yes, yes he was. Because sometimes fiction is better than the actual words or the text. But luckily the American public are smart and they have the transcript. They’ve read the conversation, they know when someone’s just making it up.”
After Turner’s remarks, Schiff told those assembled: “My colleague is right … it’s not okay.”
And this is not something that the mainstream media did much to correct – they liked Schiff’s false version, and they didn’t want to correct him. NBC News posted the video without noting that Schiff later admitted that he was not telling the truth.
The New York Times reported on Thursday that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) had advance knowledge of the outline of the whistleblower complaint against President Donald Trump before the complaint was filed, and that Schiff’s office advised the whistleblower on how to effectively create the complaint.
However, in a September 17, 2019 interview with MSNBC, Rep. Schiff said his office had not spoken “directly” with the whistleblower and that the whistleblower had not been advised “by the inspector general or the director of national intelligence (DNI)” on how to communicate with Congress:
“Schiff’s office advised the whistleblower on how to effectively create the complaint.”
If all this has a somewhat familiar feel of subterfuge and ambush, it should. The episode is redolent of the sneak attack on Brett Kavanaugh. An unknown person levels nasty allegations; a Democratic lawmaker (in that case, Sen. Dianne Feinstein) conceals the claim before springing it at an opportune moment; the media jumps on board to distort and inflame the story. Lost in the carnage are little things like fairness, standards and due process.
So, what about the whistleblower’s report? Did Trump withhold military aid from Ukraine in exchange for favors?
The United States military aid to Ukraine was sent as scheduled, according to a spokesperson for the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB), putting in context a key claim by an anonymous intelligence community whistleblower whose complaint was followed by a Democrat-led impeachment inquiry.
The whistleblower claimed that the president had suspended all security assistance to Ukraine. Instead, the aid underwent a routine review process after a so-called footnote was placed on the funds to Ukraine and was disbursed on or ahead of schedule, a senior administration official told The Epoch Times on Oct. 2. The aid underwent the review around the time White House officials were considering a broad range of foreign aid cuts.
[…]Instead of the abrupt suspension, the aid package underwent a typical process, the administration spokesman said. The budget office was simultaneously considering a rescissions package that could impact nine other countries.
Well, did Ukraine at least think that Trump was withholding aid in exchange for investigating Biden corruption?
Ukrainian officials did not think that President Trump was using U.S. aid as a bargaining chip when he and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky spoke in July. According to BuzzFeed News, at the time of the infamous phone call now used as the basis for Democrats’ latest impeachment efforts, the Ukrainian president thought U.S. aid was already on its way. This aligns with what The New York Times reported last week in regards to the Zelensky government not thinking aid might be withheld.
Is that what you’ve been hearing from Democrat politicians, the mainstream media and your uninformed co-workers? Me neither.
The fired prosecutor at the center of the Ukraine controversy said during a private interview with President Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani earlier this year that he was told to back off an investigation involving a natural gas firm that was linked to Joe Biden’s son, according to details of that interview that were handed over to Congress by the State Department’s inspector general Wednesday.
Fox News obtained a copy of Giuliani’s notes from his January 2019 interview with fired Ukrainian prosecutor Viktor Shokin in which he claimed that his “investigations stopped out of fear of the United States.”
Joe Biden also told reporters that he had never met with anyone connected to his son’s “business dealings”, but then a photograph was reported, showing Joe Biden, his son Hunter Biden, and Devon Archer, who served on the board of the Ukrainian natural gas company Burisma Holdings with Hunter. Again, the mainstream media was mostly silent about that discovery.
Ukrainian government officials tried to help Hillary Clinton and undermine Trump by publicly questioning his fitness for office. They also disseminated documents implicating a top Trump aide in corruption and suggested they were investigating the matter, only to back away after the election. And they helped Clinton’s allies research damaging information on Trump and his advisers, a Politico investigation found.
A Ukrainian-American operative who was consulting for the Democratic National Committee met with top officials in the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington in an effort to expose ties between Trump, top campaign aide Paul Manafort and Russia, according to people with direct knowledge of the situation.
Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden raised $15.2 million in the third quarter fundraising period, his campaign announced Thursday… Meanwhile President Trump’s campaign and the Republican National Committee combined to raise a record $125 million last quarter and ended the period with more than $156 million cash on hand.
Listen. Now is the time for you to make a difference in the 2020 election. Share the articles that I linked to above on social media. Donate to the Trump campaign, or to a good conservative 2020 candidate. When yard signs become available, go get one, and put it on your lawn. I’m going to do it, and I want you to do it, too.
Liberal feminist Hanna Rosin takes a look at this question in the far-left Slate, of all places.
The official Bureau of Labor Department statistics show that the median earnings of full-time female workers is 77 percent of the median earnings of full-time male workers. But that is very different than “77 cents on the dollar for doing the same work as men.” The latter gives the impression that a man and a woman standing next to each other doing the same job for the same number of hours get paid different salaries. That’s not at all the case. “Full time” officially means 35 hours, but men work more hours than women. That’s the first problem: We could be comparing men working 40 hours to women working 35.
How to get a more accurate measure? First, instead of comparing annual wages, start by comparing average weekly wages. This is considered a slightly more accurate measure because it eliminates variables like time off during the year or annual bonuses (and yes, men get higher bonuses, but let’s shelve that for a moment in our quest for a pure wage gap number). By this measure, women earn 81 percent of what men earn, although it varies widely by race. African-American women, for example, earn 94 percent of what African-American men earn in a typical week. Then, when you restrict the comparison to men and women working 40 hours a week, the gap narrows to 87 percent.
But we’re still not close to measuring women “doing the same work as men.” For that, we’d have to adjust for many other factors that go into determining salary. Economists Francine Blau and Lawrence Kahn did that in a recent paper, “The Gender Pay Gap.”.”They first accounted for education and experience. That didn’t shift the gap very much, because women generally have at least as much and usually more education than men, and since the 1980s they have been gaining the experience. The fact that men are more likely to be in unions and have their salaries protected accounts for about 4 percent of the gap. The big differences are in occupation and industry. Women congregate in different professions than men do, and the largely male professions tend to be higher-paying. If you account for those differences, and then compare a woman and a man doing the same job, the pay gap narrows to 91 percent. So, you could accurately say in that Obama ad that, “women get paid 91 cents on the dollar for doing the same work as men.”
I believe that the remainder of the gap can be accounted for by looking at other voluntary factors that differentiate men and women.
Women are more likely than men to work in industries with more flexible schedules. Women are also more likely to spend time outside the labor force to care for children. These choices have benefits, but they also reduce pay—for both men and women. When economists control for such factors, they find the gender gap largely disappears.
A 2009 study commissioned by the Department of Labor found that after controlling for occupation, experience, and other choices, women earn 95 percent as much as men do. In 2005, June O’Neil, the former director of the Congressional Budget Office, found that “There is no gender gap in wages among men and women with similar family roles.” Different choices—not discrimination—account for different employment and wage outcomes.
The Department of Labor’s Time Use survey shows that full-time working women spend an average of 8.01 hours per day on the job, compared to 8.75 hours for full-time working men. One would expect that someone who works 9% more would also earn more. This one fact alone accounts for more than a third of the wage gap.
[…]Recent studies have shown that the wage gap shrinks—or even reverses—when relevant factors are taken into account and comparisons are made between men and women in similar circumstances. In a 2010 study of single, childless urban workers between the ages of 22 and 30, the research firm Reach Advisors found that women earned an average of 8% more than their male counterparts. Given that women are outpacing men in educational attainment, and that our economy is increasingly geared toward knowledge-based jobs, it makes sense that women’s earnings are going up compared to men’s.
When women make different choices about education and labor that are more like what men choose, they earn just as much or more than men.