OpenCDA

April 10, 2018

Renewed Request for Presidential Commission

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: — Bill @ 11:03 am

Warren Commission Composite NYTMy OpenCdA posts on January 10, 2018, entitled ‘So It Never Happens Again …‘ and February 13, 2018, entitled ‘Appoint a Presidential Commission‘ urged President Trump to appoint a Presidential Commission with the same stature and authority as the 1963 Warren Commission.  The Commission I advocated first in January 2018 would examine the depth and effects of corruption by politicization of both the US Department of Justice and its subordinate agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

There were two underlying reasons for my belief that a national Presidential Commission was more appropriate than a second Special Counsel.

  • The job was too big for a Special Counsel.  The scope of DoJ and FBI malfeasance, criminal abuses of authority, and other criminal conduct infected other federal agencies during the Obama presidency.  Some of those agencies, notably the CIA, the NSA, the Department of State including then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Internal Revenue Service, the Executive Office of the President under and including then-President Barack Obama, and employees and members of the US Congress (e.g., Deborah Wasserman Schultz, D-FL 23rd District) had personnel with varying degrees of criminal complicity involving national security compromises and outright apparent violations of Title 18 US Code sections.
  • Ordering authoritative measures to identify and correct the abuses and criminal conduct by the DoJ and FBI and to reestablish the public’s confidence in both the DoJ and the FBI is more important than prosecuting offenders except for the most egregious violations of criminal law.  Criminal prosecutions sound good, but in the end, the results are often unsatisfying.   That outcome would still leave a corrupt DoJ and FBI intact after a few low-level sacrificial stooges are convicted in skewed show trials that would likely take years to convene and conclude.

I believe those original reasons remain valid, but now there are more.

  • My August 16, 2017, post entitled ‘Understanding the Subversion of the Trump Presidency‘ linked to documents explaining several levels of plans that were put in place immediately after President Trump’s election to subvert his presidency and undermine the national security.  Little did we know at the time that the ‘lawfare’ mentioned in the written plans of Brock, et al, would result in the appointment of an overzealous Special Counsel and his employment of several DoJ attorneys who had in numerous prosecutions been excoriated  by federal trial courts for withholding excuplatory evidence from defense counsels.  Several of the convictions in those prosecutions were overturned on appeal.
  • On April 9, 2018, FBI special agents executed search warrants and seized documents from the permanent home, the temporary hotel residence, and the office of one of President Trump’s personal attorneys, Michael Cohen.  Since we have not seen either the affidavits prepared in support of the search warrants or the search warrant return itemizing the material seized, we don’t know for sure if the warrant service was related to the so far unproven allegations of illegal conduct by President Trump.  We do know that the warrants were sought by the Office of the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York based at least in part on a referral from Special Counsel Robert Mueller and with the approval of Main Justice.  Significantly, we also know that some of the material seized contained privileged communication between President Trump and attorney Cohen.
  • The seizure by FBI agents of privileged communications between President Trump and attorney Cohen should have resulted in the material being immediately turned over to a DoJ “taint team” before any of the material was examined by anyone.  The taint team comprises DoJ attorneys who are supposed to segregate privileged information from other material so that FBI agents and DoJ attorneys do not taint an investigation by the unauthorized examination and illegal use of attorney-client privileged information.   Some of the DoJ attorneys on Mueller’s Special Counsel have been chastised for Brady decision violations (For a brief discussion of Brady, see my August 27, 2014, OpenCdA post entitled From Arfee to Brady).  Their professional credibility has already been tainted in earlier times by documented misconduct.
  • The FBI and the DoJ misrepresented or withheld material facts from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in securing warrants to surveil a US citizen, Carter Page.  Agencies and their agents who will lie to the Court may also be willing to fabricate evidence.   When those agencies and their agents are part of the US Intelligence Community, they have access to the resources who could fabricate false but convincing documentary evidence that would be difficult to detect forensically or linguistically, particularly if the forgers had access to contextual documents that might be found in an attorney’s files.
  • The FBI and DoJ have intentionally delayed their responses to Congressional subpoenas for information about the numerous acts of alleged criminal conduct by Hillary Clinton, her campaign, her husband, and their Foundation.
  • The DoJ Inspector General’s report (actually six reports), originally to have been released in March, then April, may not not be released until May or later.   AG Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III should, but likely won’t, ask the President to declassify that report and immediately release it without redactions to the public by posting it on the White House website.   A Presidential Commission’s recommendation to do exactly that could hardly be ignored by Sessions whose love for the DoJ as an institution appears to exceed his loyalty to the US Constitution or the American people.
  • The efforts of the DoJ, the FBI, and the Special Counsel seem now to be a concerted effort to intentionally obstruct the performance of the duties of the President and Congress.   By design, our “free press” heartily endorses and furthers that objective.   The skews media are protected by the First Amendment, however as those same media are quick to point out when it serves their purposes, there can be reasonable restrictions on the freedoms guaranteed by our Bill of Rights.  There needs to be a reasonable discussion about an appropriate and reasonable reaction when the supposedly untouchable skews media become co-conspirators with agencies and agents of the US Government to intentionally obstruct the lawful operation of a duly elected government.  A Presidential Commission, not an overzealous Special Counsel hell-bent on taking down the President of the United States, is the proper venue for that discussion.

March 15, 2018

Letter 03-15-2018: Senators Demand AG Appoint Second Special Counsel

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: — Bill @ 5:09 pm

Senate SealUS Senators Charles Grassley (Chairman, Senate Committee on the Judiciary), Lindsey Graham (Chairman, Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism), John Cornyn, and Thom Tillis  sent this letter today to the US Attorney General (AG) Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.  The attachment letter sent to DOJIG Michael Horowitz earlier is attached to today’s letter and included with the link to it.

The letter demands that AG Sessions appoint a second Special Counsel to work with the DoJ Inspector General (DOJIG) to  investigate a range of issues concerning FBI improprieties in the application and renewal of FISA warrants, the FBI’s apparent unauthorized release of classified [national security] informationi to the press, and the FBI and DoJ’s investigations of General Michael Flynn.

The letter, supported by attachments, explains that the Special Counsel’s authority includes the ability to obtain testimony from persons not currently employed by the DoJ as well as having access to special tools available to prosecutors that are not available to the DOJIG.

Significantly, the Senators’ letter concludes with this rather blunt wording:  “If you are unwilling to take this step, please send us a detailed reply explaining why not.”  It seems the Senators are getting tired of Rosenstein’s nonresponsiveness to their inquiries and requests.

February 24, 2018

Schiff (HPSCI) Memo Released Today

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: , , — Bill @ 2:13 pm

United_States_House_Permanent_Select_Committee_on_IntelligenceToday the Democrat Minority on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) released its own version of events concerning the FBI’s alleged misuse of a FISA warrant to intercept Trump campaign conversations.  Here is a link to the 10-page memorandum released today.

The Republican Majority on the HPSCI released its version of events in a memorandum on February 2, 2018.  Our OpenCdA post on February 2, 2018, entitled Nunes (HPSCI) Memo Released includes a link to the Republicans’ memorandum.

As you would expect, the Democrats and Republicans have differing accounts of how the FBI obtained the FISA warrant and renewals to intercept Carter Page.

The best information about the representations made to the FISA Court by the FBI would be in the applications and supporting documentation and, if available, transcripts of those FISA Court hearings.  That information is being sought by Judicial Watch in the lawsuit cited and linked in my February 2, 2018, post Nunes (HPSCI) Memo Released.  It is likely that the House Committee on the Judiciary would also be interested in reviewing the FISA applications material.

February 16, 2018

Really Bad Idea, Scotty! You Too, Little Marco

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: — Bill @ 7:53 pm

Chris_Wray_official_photo copyWithin hours of the mass murders on February 14, 2018, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, Florida’s knee-jerk Republican Governor Rick Scott and half-cocked Republican US Senator Marco Rubio have demanded that FBI Director Christopher Wray resign.

The FBI has already acknowledged that it failed to properly categorize and forward a good citizen’s potentially critical report called in on January 5 to the FBI about alleged shooter Nikolas Cruz.

Properly, both Director Wray and AG Sessions have ordered an investigation to determine exactly what happened that led to the FBI’s mishandling critical information.  Until that investigation is completed, any adverse actions against any FBI employee including Director Wray are premature.

Wray was installed as the FBI Director on September 28, 2017, exactly 140 days before the Parkland murders.

For two opportunistic political hacks, Florida’s Governor Rick Scott and Senator Marco Rubio, to call for Wray’s resignation over the breakdown of a program put in place long before be became Director is not only unfair but monumentally stupid.  Firing Wray for not having first found and then fixed every FBI problem in his first 140 days on the job is not the way to rehabilitate the FBI.

The damage done to the FBI and DoJ by eight years of Obama and Biden, Holder and Lynch, and Mueller and Comey appears to have originated at the top and flowed downhill.  Their politicizing damage needs to be  assessed by a Presidential Commission, not aggravated by firing Christopher Wray.

Right now, the FBI needs a strong Director.  It may have one in Christopher Wray.  Fire him for political expedience rather than just cause, and the next qualified and competent Director will almost certainly be much harder to find.

February 13, 2018

Appoint a Presidential Commission

Warren Commission Composite NYTWith  American citizens finally becoming more aware of  the scope and gravity of the institutional corruption involved in and around the 2016 election, members of Congress are receiving increasing demands to appoint another Special Counsel.

As I opined in my OpenCdA post on January 12, 2018, entitled So It Never Happens Again …,  merely appointing yet another Special Counsel to look into the allegations of apparent criminal wrongdoing associated with the 2016 national general election would be an incomplete approach.

I don’t dispute there are grounds for such a Special Counsel.  However, I believe the job of rehabilitating corrupted and crippled agencies whose missions are critically important to the national security is too much for a Special Counsel.

Before you conclude I’m overstating the scope of work required for rehabilitation, consider this:

Credible evidence released by diligent House and Senate committees has provided solid reasons to believe that the following government bodies have some involvement either as alleged violators or as victims in the numerous and various statutory and administrative rule violations:

  • Central Intelligence Agency (alleged violator)
  • Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) (victim)
  • Department of Justice (alleged violator)
    • Federal Bureau of Investigation (alleged violator)
  • Department of State (alleged violator)
  • Federal Election Commission (victim)
  • Former President Obama and his Executive Office of the President (alleged violator)
  • Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (victim)
  • Internal Revenue Service (alleged violator)
  • National Security Agency (alleged violator)
  • US Congress (victim)

Very arguably the most important objective of  rehabilitation has to be to restore the public’s confidence in our federal agencies to perform their duties honestly and diligently.  (Lest we forget, the honest and diligent employees of all the alleged violator agencies are ‘the public,’ too.)  Thus far, the Mueller Special Counsel effort has produced  little or nothing to accomplish that objective.

There is another objective that no Special Counsel will have the courage to touch:  An open and frank discussion of the miserable failure of our First Amendment-protected news media to provide timely, accurate, and complete reporting of verified information (not opinion) to We, the People.

That discussion must include but not start with the performance of reporters or editors or news directors.  It must start with media owners’ lack of understanding the importance of timely, accurate, complete news reporting.  Then these owners must be questioned about their lack of commitment to that same reporting.

In part the failures of federal agencies have apparently been aided and abetted by the First Amendment-protected news media’s decisions to ignore or under-report those failures.   The media owe We, the People, some answers for their seemingly aiding and abetting alleged crimes that have been committed against all the people of the United States.

If the public’s confidence in the integrity of some critical agencies and their employees is to be restored, we need a Presidential Commission with far more horsepower, moral courage, and integrity than we are likely to ever see from another Special Counsel like Robert Mueller.

February 9, 2018

It’s Called ‘Sanitizing’

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: , , — Bill @ 8:23 pm

United_States_House_Permanent_Select_Committee_on_IntelligenceToday the President determined that the Democrat response to the Republican HPSCI memo could not be properly declassified and released to the public as written.

The letter from White House Counsel Don McGahn to the HPSCI Chairman Devin Nunes was released today.   The unclassified letter offered the Executive Branch’s assistance to the HPSCI Minority in making revisions which would allow public release of the minority’s memo.

The process of rewording classified information to permit the information to be released to the public is called “sanitizing.”

Sanitizing is a very common practice,  and when done honestly and diligently by knowledgeable, skillful writers, their desired message can be conveyed without revealing sensitive national security information.

Congress Getting Very, Very Warm …

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: , , — Bill @ 12:30 pm

FISC SealThe House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) and its Chairman Devin Nunes are getting very, very warm when it comes to ‘unmasking’ the apparent corruption and exploitation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) by some Mahogany Row players in the Obama Justice Department (DoJ) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

On February 7, 2018, Chairman Nunes sent a formal written request, a letter to the Presiding Judge of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, requesting, “… transcripts of any relevant FISC hearings associated with the initial FISA application or subsequent renewals related to electronic surveillance of Carter Page.”

Clearly, Chairman Nunes and the HPSCI need to see all of the material submitted to the FISC to determine the extent of the representations, if any,  made to the Court in obtaining a FISA warrant and its three renewals to use the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to conduct an unlawful electronic surveillance on US citizen Carter Page.

Beyond that, it is very possible the HPSCI’s examination of these materials may reveal a pattern of deception practiced by officials in both the DoJ and FBI in seeking or securing other FISA warrants against US citizens unlawfully “unmasked” after incidental contact with persons lawfully the targets of FISA interceptions.

(P.S.:  It appears that even Sulzburger’s Slimes at the New York Times can no longer continue to ignore the post mortem stench of the Obama administration.  On February 6, 2018, the New York Times Company submitted a motion to the FISA Court requesting that the Court “… order publicatiion of all of its orders authorizing surveillance of Carter Page, a United States citizen, together with the application materials and renewal application mateerials upon which those orders were issued.”)

February 6, 2018

Update: Prior Redactions to Important Senate Judiciary Committee Memo Revealed

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: , , — Bill @ 8:18 pm

Senate SealOn Feburary 5, 2018, our OpenCdA post entitled Senate Judiciary Committee Memo Released relating to the Christopher Steele “dossier” contained a link to the highly-redacted Committee memo concerning the “dossier” and its importance to the FBI and DoJ in security a FISA warrant to surveil a US citizen, Carter Page.

Late today, the Department of Justice (DoJ) responded positively to a request from Senators Grassley and Graham to further declassify some of the material redacted in that material.

Here is the further redacted memo released just a few hours ago.

If factually accurate, the current memo’s representations suggest it was the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign, not Donald J. Trump, who were conspiring with a foreign agent to violate several campaign finance laws to prevent the lawful election of Donald J. Trump.

The memo in conjunction with other evidence strongly suggests that some FBI and DoJ headquarters executives were severely and possibly criminally derelict in performing their official duties pursuant to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Court’s authorization to surveil Carter Page, a US citizen.

Please read the further redacted memo and decide for yourselves.

To date, Fox News has been the only major news medium to doggedly resist falling in line with the journalism group think/Clinton love fest so sickeningly broadcast by the formerly important news networks NBC, CBS, ABC, and CNN, and formerly reliable and diligent newspapers including but not limited to the New York Times and the Washington Post.

Whether they knew it or not, these and other news media have promoted the effort to first defeat Donald Trump’s candidacy and then, failing to engineer his election defeat,  to use whatever means necessary to prevent him from performing his official duties and then to remove him from office.

By failing to diligently pursue the facts objectively, it appears to me the national skews media have collectively participated in deception by omission.  Sadly, both the FBI and the Department of Justice have been complicit in the effort to manage the information the public receives.

It is likely that much more information will be revealed by the Congressional investigations.

It’s Called ‘Lawfare’

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: — Bill @ 1:04 pm

LawfareThe Fox News Network is running an online news story today by Fred Lucas.  The story is headlined Democratic AGs swarm Trump administration with lawsuits.

The story is accompanied by a pull quote which reads, “This is not about the rule of law or holding the line to stop the feds from preempting state laws; this is about power.”  The quote is attributed to Scott Will, executive director of the Republican Attorneys General Association.

It has a name, Mr. Will.   It’s called “Lawfare.”  Think of it as weaponizing the rule of law with the sole purpose of  paralyzing and neutralizing a superior opponent.  If you and your cronies in the Republican Attorney General Association  (RAGA) are just figuring out that “The Resistance” to the Trump election and inauguration is using it, you’ve got a lot of catching up to do.  I suggest you read a couple of books.

The first book is Lawfare:  Law as a Weapon of War. It was published in 2016.

The second is Lawfare: The War Against Free Speech: A First Amendment Guide for Reporting in an Age of Islamist Lawfare.  It was published in 2011.

If the RAGA members doubt that its DAGA counterparts like Washington State’s Robert “Sideshow Bob” Ferguson are intentionally using lawfare to bring the Trump administration to a grinding halt, they should find and read David Brock’s online publication “Democracy Matters – Strategic Plan for Action.”  (See OpenCdA post dated August 16, 2017, entitled Understanding the Subversion of the Trump Presidency.)  Lawfare is one of the techniques Brock and his fellow travelers discuss in the Strategic Plan for Action.

February 5, 2018

Senate Judiciary Committee Memo Released

Filed under: Probable Cause — Tags: — Bill @ 5:30 pm

Senate SealIn an apparently undated and heavily redacted declassified memorandum released today,  Senators Charles Grassley and Lindsey Graham of the US Senate Committee on the Judiciary have referred “… Christopher Steele to the Department of Justice for investigation of potential violation(s) of 18 U.S.C. § 1001.”

Steele’s mostly unsubstantiated “dossier,” funded by the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton Campaign, apparently played a significant role in the FBI’s obtaining a FISA warrant to wiretap former Trump campaign staffer Carter Page.  (See OpenCdA post dated February 2, 2018, entitled Nunes (HPSCI) Memo Released.)

The referral suggests that the Senate Judiciary Committee believes Steele may have knowingly and willfully (1) falsifie[d], conceal[ed], or cover[ed] up by any trick, scheme, or device a material fact; or (2) ma[de] any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or representation; or (3) ma[de] or use[d] any false writing or document knowing the same to contain any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or entry in an investigation or review, conducted pursuant to the authority of any committee, subcommittee, commission or office of the Congress, consistent with applicable rules of the House or Senate.

The FBI and DoJ included Steele’s “dossier” or parts of it in their FISA warrant application.  One issue is whether the FBI adequately informed the FISA Court Judge that the “dossier” information included in the FISA warrant application had not been verified by the FBI and was, in fact, created as an opposition research document funded by the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton Campaign.

The memos like today’s and the Nunes’ memo are interesting, however the real meat of the info would come from the FISA warrant  initial and renewal applications  and any supporting documentation attached.  What the affiant represented to the FISA Court and what the affiant should have told the Court but failed to fully disclose or completely withheld are important.

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