November 14, 2016

FBI Director Comey’s Letters

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: , , , — Bill @ 7:20 pm

hillaryloserfsbPredictably, Hillary Clinton blames FBI Director James Comey for her loss in the 2016 presidential election.  She asserts that Comey’s July and October comments and letters to certain Congressional oversight committee chairmen and minority ranking members caused some of her supporters to vote for Trump or at least not vote for her.

Assume she’s correct about the influence Comey’s letters may have had on some voters.

The real question, then, is whether Comey acted with malice or favoritism toward either nominee.  Did he intend to influence the outcome of the election?

OpenCdA doesn’t think he did.  An equally strong and even more plausible argument is that Comey was performing the duties required and expected of the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Hillary Clinton’s illegal storage and retention of national security information on her unsecured private email server and her illegally allowing unauthorized persons (e.g., her housekeeper) to handle and view that information elevated the severity of her actions.  More than just violating statutes and administrative orders, Clinton maliciously jeopardized the national security.  As Secretary of State,  Clinton was required to know and understand the various national security regulations and laws to not only conform her own conduct but also to ensure her employees complied with those regulations and laws as well.    By virtue of her position, she knew using the private email server to traffic in national security information was wrong.  She cannot claim ignorance as a defense.

As we’ve pointed out in several preceding OpenCdA posts, the FBI has multiple responsibilities.   Not all of them will or should end in an arrest, prosecution, and trial.  Protecting the United States against foreign intelligence operations and espionage is frequently at the top of that list.

Whether the Clintons  want to admit it or not, their knowingly allowing her server to be used to exchange national security information seriously jeopardized the national security.  Using BleachBit overwrite software, Clinton intentionally tried to hide evidence of her culpability from the Intelligence Community.    The effect was that she obstructed the Intelligence Community’s effort to assess the damage done to national security.  She made it difficult and maybe impossible to conclusively itemize what national security information was actually compromised and by whom.

If the Clinton private email server had not been used to traffic in national security information, it would likely not have been of even passing interest to Congress.   But once the FBI determined the server had been used to unlawfully store national security information, it had a duty to investigate and keep Congress informed about the threat to national security.  To do otherwise is to make it difficult or impossible for Congress to exercise its responsibility to oversee Executive Branch departments and agencies.

FBI Director James Comey was between the dog and the fire hydrant, but it was Hillary Clinton who pumped the dog full of diuretics when she created her illegal email server and used it to illegally traffic in national security information.

FBI Director James Comey did not conceive, build, and use the backchannel unsecured email system.  Secretary of State Hillary Clinton did.

November 8, 2016

Another ‘What If…’

Filed under: Probable Cause — Bill @ 5:36 am

CRS copyWhat if no candidate for President of the United States wins a majority of electoral votes?  What  happens then?

There will be a ‘contingent election.’  It happened twice in history, both times in the 1800’s.  The House of Representatives would elect the President, and the Senate would elect the Vice-President.

There’s a more detailed explanation of the ‘contingent election’ process in the Congressional Research Service’s report dated November 3, 2016, and entitled Contingent Election of the President and Vice President by Congress:  Perspectives and Contemporary Analysis.

November 1, 2016

Cooperating Witness? Or Defendant?

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: , , — Bill @ 4:42 pm

humaabedinweinerNow we learn that the FBI discovered some Hillary email server case emails on the laptop computer of none other than Huma Abedin’s estranged husband Anthony “Carlos Danger” Weiner.

Through her personal attorney, Abedin states she didn’t know those emails were on Anthony Weiner’s computer.

If Abedin is denying using Carlos’ computer for work-related emails, then how did the emails get there?

It appears to OpenCdA that the FBI now owns Huma Abedin.  She swore under oath that she had turned over all devices containing Clinton email server related messages.

It also appears to us that Abedin has two choices:  She can become a fully cooperating truth-telling witness in the FBI’s investigations of both Clinton’s email and her family’s foundation,  or she can become a defendant and risk spending time in a federal penitentiary.  Since daddy is likely already facing prison time for soliciting sex with an underage girl, if Huma wants to give their four year-old son Jordan some semblance of a normal life, it shouldn’t be a difficult choice.

October 27, 2016

… And Now We Know Who and Why

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: , , , — Bill @ 12:59 pm

hillaryfsb78FBI Director James Comey’s July 5th announcement surprised many people, but it completely stunned the over 100 FBI investigators and 6 DoJ National Security Division attorneys who had worked on the Clinton private email server investigation.   The investigative team had nearly unanimously recommended charging Democrat Party presidential nominee Hillary Clinton with numerous very serious violations of national security laws.

But thanks to recent FBI releases of more of her emails which Clinton thought she had not only deleted but overwritten as well, the world now knows that President Barack Hussein Obama had directed his sycophant Attorney General Loretta Lynch that under no circumstances was Clinton to be charged with any crimes.

Many people would assume Obama’s order to Lynch was to protect Clinton’s candidacy.  But again thanks to the FBI releases of the emails, even liberal propaganda mills the New York Times and Politico were forced to report that Obama was more likely trying to prevent one of his own very serious lies to the American public from being revealed.

On March 15, 2015, Obama gave a highly-publicized interview in which he told the world he had learned about Clinton’s private email server the same way as everyone else — from the news.  The Clinton email dump reveals that Obama was lying, and Hillary Clinton, her lawyer Cheryl Mills, and her campaign advisor John Podesta knew it.   A March 7, 2015, email from Mills to Podesta told Podesta about emails from Obama (using a pseudonym) to Clinton on her private server that long predated his March 15, 2015, interview.   Here are the Politico story and the New York Times story.

And now we know why FBI Director James Comey said what he said on July 5.

Comey almost certainly had been told by Lynch that she really didn’t care what evidence the FBI and DoJ investigators found.  She had already made an agreement with Barack Hussein Obama to decline prosecuting Clinton.  Why?  Because any prosecution of Clinton would most certainly have revealed the President’s own bald-faced lie to the people.

Infinitely more worrisome than Obama’s lie to the public, a Clinton criminal trial could and probably would reveal that Obama was aware the server was illegally being used to store classified information.  Even the very bribable Democrats and lily-livered Republicans in Congress would be forced to deliberate impeachment, not of Obama (who will presumably be gone on January 20, 2017) but of President Hillary Clinton.

Loretta Lynch’s loyalty may at some point in her legal career have been to the principle of rule of law and the US Constitution.  No longer.  Loretta Lynch’s loyalty is to Barack Hussein Obama.   The public will rightly wonder what tangible gratuity Lynch will receive in return from the Clintons or their Foundation.

It’s highly doubtful that Lynch has either the personal or professional integrity and dignity to follow in the steps of Nixon’s Attorney General Elliot Richardson and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus.  They resigned rather than follow Nixon’s politically-motivated orders to fire the special prosecutor.  Lynch didn’t even have the courage to refuse to meet privately on her government airplane with the disgraced former President William Jefferson Clinton even though her Justice Department was investigating Clinton’s wife for her crimes which gravely imperil the national security.

The American public should be very, very concerned that Obama’s US Department of Justice, particularly but not exclusively Mahogany Row at Main Justice, has become so politicized.

One of the often-heard arguments against Hillary Clinton’s presidency is that she will likely be able to appoint at least three US Supreme Court justices.  Voters need to recognize that it is worse than that.

The ideological contamination will not be limited to appellate decisions by the US Supreme Court.

The next President will appoint not only Supreme Court justices.  The next President will also appoint some new or additional federal judges and appoint or reappoint some or all of the 94 US Attorneys.  For citizens who need to seek the remedy and justice of the federal courts, the thought that any or all of those appointees could be like Eric Holder or Loretta Lynch or Janet Reno or John Mitchell or Ed Meese or Alberto Gonzales is terrifying.

October 25, 2016

What If …?

Filed under: Probable Cause — Bill @ 7:19 am

CRS copyBecause of the way the 2016 presidential campaign has been conducted, there are some very real “what ifs” the country may be called upon to address:

“What would happen in 2016 if a candidate for President or Vice President were to die or leave the ticket any time between the national party conventions and the November 8 election day?  What would happen if this occurred during presidential transition, either between election day and the December 19, 2016, meeting of the electoral college; or between December 19 and the inauguration of the President and Vice President on January 20, 2017?”

“If legitimate and verifiable allegations of voting fraud, or indications of misconduct by election officials on election day are presented, what legal recourses are available to complainants to litigate and potentially to remedy such wrongs and to contest the result of a presidential election?”

In performing its duties to anticipate these types of questions and deliver guidance of members of Congress, the  Congressional Research Service has prepared two reports.

The first is a 12-page report dated October 6, 2016, and entitled Presidential Elections:  Vacancies in Major-Party Candidacies and the Position of President Elect.

The second is an 11-page report dated October 24, 2016, and entitled Legal Processes for Contesting the Results of a Presidential Election.


October 22, 2016

Turn Your Radio On?

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: — Bill @ 4:27 pm

2015WindstormHead1Remember Windstorm 2015?  It was just a little less than a year ago.

One of the major concerns expressed by officials and citizens in Windstorm 2015’s aftermath was the complete inadequacy of timely, consistent, verified information being put out by the Kootenai County Office of Emergency Management before, during, and even after the event.

If this recent blurb on the City of Coeur d’Alene’s website is any indication, little has changed for the better.  Apparently the City has decided that “social media” will be the method of choice for reaching out to the public.

So, what’s wrong with “social media?”

  • They are internet dependent.  Fortunately the internet is absolutely reliable.  Nothing ever could happen to it, right?  Except this and this.
  • It requires users to have expensive internet devices, service, and access.  What about people who do not have smart phones or other internet-capable portable devices?  And what about people who have the devices but they use rechargeable but not replaceable batteries? What do they do when the electricity goes out for days and their whizbang communications device goes dead?  A discharged battery that cannot be replaced or recharged is useless for emergency telephone communications as well as for receiving timely, verified information from officials on “social media.”
  • Which “social medium” will be the official source of official information?  We don’t know, because neither the City nor the County have told us.  Will it be FaceRash, Snappity-Doo-Dah, Twitterpation?
  • If the “social media” allow public input, each medium must be monitored continuously by EOC personnel.  People will use these media to report information that would more appropriately be called in to a trained call-taker at 9-1-1.

Our preceding Windstorm 2015 posts advocated the County and City working with one or more terrestrial commercial broadcast AM and FM radio stations to allow the Kootenai County Emergency Operations Center to provide an audio feed to the station(s).

The type of feed we envisioned would provide short duration, as-warranted or several times per hour reports at regular invervals.  They would be similar to traffic reports currently broadcast.  Here’s an audio example recorded January 4, 2016.  It was aired by KXLY radio.  The on-air announcer, Bob Lutz, works for Metro Traffic which provides traffic report audio feeds to several stations.

Why use old-fashioned radio?

  • It is not internet dependent.
  • Some radio stations in our area include nearly all of Kootenai County in their primary coverage area.
  • Radio stations’ studios and transmitter sites are designed to operate during emergencies, even long-term power outages.  They have been used for decades to deliver timely, essential information to many people.  Radio is reliable, and it has proven itself.
  • A battery-powered portable AM/FM radio receiver costs less than $25.  The commonly used, inexpensive alkaline batteries have a shelf-life of ten years, so spares can easily be stored with other emergency supplies.
  • Most cars, pickups, trucks, and motor homes come with AM/FM radios.  Even visitors in the area and people passing through would have access to emergency information.  No keyboard operations required while driving in adverse conditions.
  • In many emergencies (think Firestorm, Mt. St. Helens eruption, Ice Storm) radio stations already interrupt regular programming to provide information from the National Weather Service and other emergency entities.  They already have a plan and could work with the Kootenai County OEM to plan and prepare in advance.
  • The OEM/EOC has absolute control over the timing and completeness of the information being disseminated through its audio feed to its radio partners.  It can assure that only timely, accurate information is sent on its feed.
  • The announcer in the EOC needs only two skills:  Be able to read copy clearly and be able to tell time.  Others in the EOC need to be able to write the clear, succinct, accurate copy for the on-air announcer to read.

What would the OEM/EOC have to do?

  • Commit to using terrestrial commercial AM and FM stations (if the stations are willing) as the primary method of delivering emergency information to the public.
  • Identify radio stations with adequate area coverage around the clock.   Some radio stations, mainly AM stations,  reduce power or change their antenna pattern at night to reduce interference with other stations.  Contact the station management to dicsuss the idea.
  • Assuming suitable stations agree to participate, work with their personnel to establish the technical links from the EOC to the stations.  It’s not as complicated as it might seem.  It will cost some money, though.
  • Train OEM/EOC persons to gather the information from others in the EOC, then write and read the copy.

In an emergency, getting timely, verified accurate, complete information out to the public is essential.  Using commercial AM and FM terrestrial radio achieves that.  If people know where to tune in an emergency, and if they tune there and hear what they need to hear, they are less likely to tie up emergency phone numbers such as 9-1-1 asking for information.  They are also less likely to use “social media” to report emergency information that should be called in to 9-1-1 where trained call-takers can process it more quickly and accurately and route it to appropriate responders.

September 15, 2016

Medical Intelligence

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: — Bill @ 12:39 pm

medintelSince Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton started coughing and recently appeared to collapse as she was approaching her van, the Trump campaign and the public, including many in the skews media, have been calling for  to release her medical records.  Naturally, the Clinton campaign wants to see Trump’s medical records as well.

“The voters are entitled to know about the health of the next President of the United States!” the bombasters of radio and television infotainment, skews, and political spin have decreed.

But there are other considerations arguing for confidentiality.  National security is at the top of the list.

It shouldn’t shock anyone to learn that the intelligence services of the world spend a great deal of time and money trying to gather medical intelligence about world leaders in government, military, and business.  They are also intensely interested in the emotional and psychological makeup of their adversaries.

The physical health of an individual influences his or her ability to comprehend information and make decisions.   From an intelligence perspective, knowledge of a leader’s physical and mental conditions adds to the information an adversary needs to influence an opponent’s decisions whether in diplomacy or warfare.

Would Nikita Khrushchev’s urinalysis results have been helpful to the CIA to aid President Eisenhower in dealing with the shootdown of our U-2 spy plane?

If the President was wearing a wireless Holter monitor to track an irregular heartbeat, would it be helpful to an adversary to know what that monitor indicated?

Or if the President was hospitalized with a traumatic injury, would the bandages, containers, and instruments bearing the President’s bodily fluids yield DNA results of intelligence value?  What about laboratory tissue samples?

Would detailed and accurate knowledge of the President’s ailments and medications be useful to another government whose leader might be interested in disabling but not killing the President to cause the 25th Amendment to be invoked?

OpenCdA does not agree with those who demand that all presidential candidates must release medical information.   The information may salve our curiosity, but that same information in the wrong hands will have serious adverse consequences in both diplomacy and warfare.

The medical conditions of the next President of the United States are indisputably a national security issue.

September 13, 2016

‘Forensic’ Misunderstanding

Filed under: Probable Cause — Bill @ 1:18 pm

KC Int Audit Cover for OCdA Post


On Monday, September 12, ,2016, the Kootenai County Board of Commissioners (BOCC) unanimously agreed to engage the nationally-recognized CPA firm of Eide Bailly to conduct a forensic audit of the North Idaho State Fair Board’s financial records.  Eide Bailly specifically lists Forensic Accounting and Valuation among of its services.

BOCC Commissioner Green and a member of the Fair Board expressed their concern that the term ‘forensic audit’ implies criminal misconduct.  Their concern is understandable given the focus of ‘Forensic This-and-That’ programming on television to exploit the entertainment value of criminal investigation and prosecution.  But ‘forensic’ is not exclusively the dominion of criminal law. (more…)

September 11, 2016

Deep Throat, Ver. 2.0?

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: , , — Bill @ 1:45 pm

comeyWill present FBI Director James Comey be revealed in the footnotes of history as ‘Deep Throat, Ver. 2.0?’

OpenCdA certainly hopes so.  It would help explain Comey’s contradictory conduct in the Clinton email and Foundation investigations.  Out of one side of his mouth, Comey has laid out sufficient evidence for the criminal indictment of Hillary Clinton on numerous violations of national security and criminal law.  Yet out of the other side, he has said no reasonable prosecutor would even consider such a filing.

We cling to one last very weak straw of hope that Comey and the FBI have not succumbed to Beltway Toxicity and subordinated the country’s foundational principle of the rule of law to the rule of man (or woman).

Comey knows that the decision to charge or not charge Hillary Clinton with the crimes she has allegedly committed rests exclusively with the US Attorney General and her headnodders on Mahogany Row at Main Justice.

OpenCdA readers will recall, however, that after what Attorney General Loretta Lynch said was a purely spontaneous meeting between her and Slick Willy in late June on the tarmac at Sky Harbor Aiport, Lynch promptly said she would not make the decision to charge or not charge, leaving it up to her subordinates at Main Justice.

Our hope is that Comey is doing publicly what former FBI Deputy Director W. Mark Felt did sub rosa during Watergate:  Turn whistle-blower to get evidence of Hillary Clinton’s culpability into the voters’ hands.   For years Felt was identified only by the pseudonym ‘Deep Throat’ in connection with the Watergate scandal.

Unlike Mark Felt who astutely played on the Washington Post owner Katharine Graham’s disdain for Nixon, Comey has chosen to neuter the Clinton-worshipping skews media by going directly to the people.  With his initial public statement on July 5, 2016, and then with the FBI’s release of its summary of the investigation in a bury-it-deep news dump the Friday before Labor Day, Comey has laid out the evidence showing more than enough to support criminal indictments of Clinton and some of her close associates.  The skews media had to report Comey’s releases even though the facts undermined Clinton’s and the media’s assertions of innocence.

Of course, we have acknowledged being wrong about Loretta Lynch’s judgment and integrity, so we must also consider that this Wall Street Journal editorial and this Breitbart exposé may have been more on the mark about FBI Director James Comey.

September 10, 2016

Exceptional Police Work

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: , — Bill @ 12:13 pm

irvine-pd-patchAt a time when citizens throughout the United States are being propagandized by various media including the skews media to ridicule and deride law enforcement officers, it was not only refreshing but also inspiring to see the Los Angeles Times newspaper run its six-part series entitled ‘FRAMED – She was the PTA mom everybody knew.  Who would want to harm her?

The series highlights the exceptional and insightful work of the Irvine, California, Police Department.  It is worth noting that the Irvine officer who was first assigned the call was an experienced police officer, not a rookie.  The article rightly raises the question:  Would the outcome of this case have been different if a less experienced and less patient patrol officer had been the first to respond?

The series was written by LA Times staff writer Christopher Goffard.  Goffard’s bio states, “He shared in the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for the paper’s Bell coverage …”  Attentive readers may recall the Kootenai County connection to the Bell scandal which the LA Times reported and for which it was awarded the Pulitzer Prize.

The entire six-part series can easily be read in half an hour.  It’s worth the time.

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