217 people who used Trump’s inauguration as an excuse to commit violence, arson, vandalism, etc., could each get 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine
I hope that each and every person who used Trump’s inauguration as an excuse to commit violence, arson, vandalism, etc., gets the maximum penalty that the law calls for. And if that ends up being 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, then so be it. Actions have consequences.
These are federal charges. If they try to skip out on bail, there will be serious consequences from law enforcement. They could get raided at home in the middle of the night, or at their place of employment, or at their school. They’d best show up at their appointed court date.
Many Arrested Inauguration Day Protesters Will Face Felony Rioting Charges, Prosecutors Say
January 21, 2017
WASHINGTON (CBSNEWS/AP) – Most of the approximately 230 protesters arrested on Inauguration Day will be charged with felony rioting, federal prosecutors said.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office said the offense is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. The office said most of those arrested will be released without having to post bail and must return to court in February.
A first group of 10 men appeared in Superior Court just before 3 p.m., and their lawyer entered a not guilty plea on their behalf. A judge released all of them on the condition they not get re-arrested in the District of Columbia.
Interim D.C. police chief Peter Newsham said Friday that 217 people were being charged with rioting.
The arrests took place in a four-block stretch of downtown Washington around the time of President Trump’s swearing-in ceremony.
The arrests came after some protesters created chaos. Windows of downtown businesses were smashed, and police deployed pepper spray and “sting balls” against the crowd.
217 Arrested, Limo Torched Amid Inauguration Day Protests
Six police officers sustained minor injuries during the protests
January 21, 2017
Demonstrations turned violent in the nation’s capital as protesters clashed with police, damaged vehicles, destroyed property and set small fires in a chaotic confrontation blocks from Donald Trump’s inauguration Friday. At least 217 people were arrested.
The majority of the day’s protests were peaceful, but police clad in riot gear faced off against hundreds of demonstrators downtown near 12th and K streets, about six blocks from where Trump would soon hold his inaugural parade, D.C. police said.
Police charged with batons, pepper spray and concussion grenades to disperse crowds. MPD Interim Police Chief Peter Newsham denied claims his agency used tear gas on demonstrators, telling NBC Washington, “We have not deployed tear gas.”
The 217 people arrested have been charged with rioting, Newsham said.
Later in the evening, a crowd surrounded a bonfire near 14th and K streets NW, burning newspapers and furniture. Some protesters sat in the middle of intersections to block traffic.
“We’re here to protest out of compassion and to be here and to show that, you know, we’re all in this together,” protester Savannah Ingall told News4.
Before nightfall, a limousine was set on fire a few blocks away from where Trump made his way down Constitution Avenue with a military escort. The fire sent a plume of black smoke into the sky and Fox News crew SUV parked behind the limo also caught fire, officials tell NBC News.
Detroit News: “Too many votes in 37% of Detroit’s precincts” and “95 Detroit poll books missing for several days”
Too many votes in 37% of Detroit’s precincts
December 13, 2016
Voting machines in more than one-third of all Detroit precincts registered more votes than they should have during last month’s presidential election, according to Wayne County records prepared at the request of The Detroit News.
Detailed reports from the office of Wayne County Clerk Cathy Garrett show optical scanners at 248 of the city’s 662 precincts, or 37 percent, tabulated more ballots than the number of voters tallied by workers in the poll books. Voting irregularities in Detroit have spurred plans for an audit by Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson’s office, Elections Director Chris Thomas said Monday.
The Detroit precincts are among those that couldn’t be counted during a statewide presidential recount that began last week and ended Friday following a decision by the Michigan Supreme Court.
Democrat Hillary Clinton overwhelmingly prevailed in Detroit and Wayne County. But Republican President-elect Donald Trump won Michigan by 10,704 votes or 47.5 percent to 47.3 percent.
Overall, state records show 10.6 percent of the precincts in the 22 counties that began the retabulation process couldn’t be recounted because of state law that bars recounts for unbalanced precincts or ones with broken seals.
The problems were the worst in Detroit, where discrepancies meant officials couldn’t recount votes in 392 precincts, or nearly 60 percent. And two-thirds of those precincts had too many votes.
Republican state senators last week called for an investigation in Wayne County, including one precinct where a Detroit ballot box contained only 50 of the 306 ballots listed in a poll book, according to an observer for Trump.
95 Detroit poll books missing for several days
December 15, 2016
Detroit elections officials waited several days to deliver nearly 100 poll books to Wayne County officials charged with certifying the presidential election, newly released documents show.
County clerk officials on Thursday released a memo to State Elections Director Chris Thomas that said 95 poll books from the 662 precincts weren’t available at the start of the canvass, which began the day after the Nov. 8 election. Five of those poll books, which contain the names of voters and ensure the integrity of elections, were never delivered to county canvassers and presumably remain missing.
The memo from county elections official Jennifer Redmond to the state also shows poll books in 101 Detroit precincts were not delivered in sealed envelopes, as the law requires.
Separate county documents obtained by The News show that poll books in 17 precincts were missing seal numbers from ballot boxes, as is required by state law.
Another Detroit precinct contained 50 of the 306 ballots listed in a poll book, according to an observer for Trump.
KKK holds parade in Roxboro
December 3, 2016
ROXBORO — The Ku Klux Klan held a parade in North Carolina Saturday, but moved it to the afternoon and one county over from where the group said it would gather to celebrate Donald Trump’s election as president.
State troopers blocked intersections as the KKK parade of about 30 vehicles drove through the city’s downtown and major thoroughfare, the Times-News in Burlington reported.
Men and women shouted “White power!” and “Hail victory!” from vehicles flying KKK flags, Confederate battle flags, Donald Trump flags and Christian flags during the afternoon parade, the newspaper reported.
Hundreds of protesters and observers had arrived in Pelham Saturday morning preparing to demonstrate against the KKK, the Times-News reported. The group, which the Southern Poverty Law Center lists as a hate group, had originally told the paper it would hold its “Victory Kavalkade Klan Parade” in the morning in the “vicinity of Pelham.”
Several groups across the state, including in Greensboro, Mebane and Charlotte, held rallies Saturday to counter the Klan event.
Donald Trump’s response to Brandon Victor Dixon’s “Hamilton” speech shows that Trump is a whiny crybaby
Brandon Victor Dixon said the following to Mike Pence:
“We, sir — we — are the diverse America who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our planet, our children, our parents, or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights. We truly hope that this show has inspired you to uphold our American values and to work on behalf of all of us.”
This seems perfectly reasonable to me.
Donald Trump responded with:
“Our wonderful future V.P. Mike Pence was harassed last night at the theater by the cast of Hamilton, cameras blazing. This should not happen!”
“The Theater must always be a safe and special place. The cast of Hamilton was very rude last night to a very good man, Mike Pence. Apologize!”
In my opinion, Trump is acting the same way as the whiny social justice crybabies whose hysterical behavior got Trump elected in the first place.
It is an American tradition for people to criticize their political leaders.
For Trump to be offended by this suggests to me that he is not fit to hold the office of the Presidency. I suggest that he resign before he even enters office.
I like what this guy (the Amazing Atheist ) has to say about it:
Now that a Republican will soon be in the White House, liberals can go back to PRETENDING that they are against war
Although the U.S. still has 5,000 troops in Iraq during the last year of Obama’s presidency, the protestors who demanded that we “bring the troops home” when Bush was president haven’t made the same demand on Obama.
On the contrary, the Democrats tried to elect a candidate who wants to start World War III.
Here’s a nice satire of these “anti-war” hypocrites.
Thank goodness for the electoral college, which prevented Hillary Clinton from starting World War III
Hillary Clinton admitted in 2013 that a no-fly zone would “kill a lot of Syrians” — but still wants one
A no-fly zone in Syria could lead to a U.S. war with Russia — but Hillary Clinton keeps on calling for one
October 21, 2016
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton continues to call for a no-fly zone in Syria, insisting it would save lives. Yet, just three years ago, she acknowledged in a private paid speech to Goldman Sachs that a no-fly zone would “kill a lot of Syrians” and lead to “American and NATO involvement where you take a lot of civilians.”
In numerous presidential debates, Clinton has proposed creating a no-fly zone or so-called safe zones in Syria, areas in which planes piloted by the Syrian government or by its Russian allies could not operate. If planes were to fly in these zones, they would be shot down.
Clinton repeated her call for a no-fly zone in the final presidential debate on Wednesday night. “I’m going to continue to push for a no-fly zone and safe havens within Syria,” she said, adding that it would be “not only to help protect the Syrians and prevent the constant outflow of refugees, but to, frankly, gain some leverage on both the Syrian government and the Russians.”
What Clinton did not acknowledge is that a no-fly zone would likely lead to war with Russia — the world’s largest nuclear power.
Chris Wallace, the moderator for the debate, alluded to this in a follow-up question. He noted that, while Clinton has called for no-fly zones in multiple debates, Gen. Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has warned that imposing a no-fly zone could potentially kick off a war with Russia.
Moreover, “President Obama has refused to do that because he fears it’s going to draw us closer or deeper into the conflict,” Wallace added. “How do you respond to their concerns?” he asked. “If you impose a no-fly zone and a Russian plane violates that, does President Clinton shoot that plane down?”
Clinton conceded that she is “well aware of the really legitimate concerns that you have expressed from both the president and the general,” yet avoided directly answering the question, doubling down on her policy. Instead of identifying a no-fly zone as a military strategy, she spoke of it as a diplomatic one, claiming, “I think a no-fly zone could save lives and could hasten the end of the conflict.”
This argument, however, is undermined by what Clinton herself privately acknowledged just three years ago. An excerpt of a June 2013 paid speech Clinton delivered to Goldman Sachs, recently released by the WikiLeaks, shows that Clinton is well aware of how dangerous a no-fly zone could be.
“To have a no-fly zone you have to take out all of the air defense, many of which are located in populated areas,” the former secretary of state explained in the 2013 speech. “So our missiles, even if they are standoff missiles so we’re not putting our pilots at risk — you’re going to kill a lot of Syrians.”
“So all of a sudden this intervention that people talk about so glibly becomes an American and NATO involvement where you take a lot of civilians,” she added.
Clinton also noted that Syria had “the fourth-biggest army in the world,” along with “very sophisticated air defense systems” that had gotten even more sophisticated because of Russian imports.
The quotes from this speech were included in a list of excerpts of Clinton’s paid speeches to Wall Street, which was attached to a January 2016 email to John Podesta, a close Clinton ally who now serves as the chair for Clinton’s presidential campaign. WikiLeaks has published thousands of emails to and from Podesta.
In the same 2013 Goldman Sachs speech included in this document, Clinton pointed out that a no-fly zone in Syria would be different from the no-fly zone that was imposed in Libya in 2011, which ultimately led to the violent overthrow of the government.
“The air defenses were not that sophisticated” in Libya, she said. Clinton also noted that there would be many more civilian casualties in Syria than there had been in Libya.
“And then you add on to it [that] a lot of the air defenses are not only in civilian population centers but near some of their chemical stockpiles,” Clinton added, referencing Syria. “You do not want a missile hitting a chemical stockpile.”
The no-fly zone imposed in Libya paved the way for the toppling, and brutal killing, of former leader Muammar Qadhafi. The U.N. Security Council first established the zone ostensibly to protect civilians, yet it quickly led to a NATO bombing campaign.
In fact, every time a no-fly zone has been imposed, it has led to regime change.
Micah Zenko, a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, used NATO’s own materials to show that, despite the humanitarian rhetoric behind the call for a no-fly zone in Libya, Western governments planned to pursue regime change in the oil-rich North African country from the very beginning.
A September 2016 report by the U.K. House of Commons’ Foreign Affairs Committee also detailed how the war in Libya was based on an array of lies.
Ignoring huge amounts of medical and scientific evidence, Mike Pence falsely said “smoking doesn’t kill”
The Centers for Disease Control states:
Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of death and disease in the United States. Cigarette smoking kills more than 480,000 Americans each year, with more than 41,000 of these deaths from exposure to secondhand smoke.
The National Institutes of Health states:
Cigarette smoking is regarded as a major risk factor in the development of lung cancer, which is the main cause of cancer deaths in men and women in the United States and the world….
… The Surgeon General’s report in 2004 concluded that in the United States, cigarette smoking has caused 12 million deaths since 1964…
… An analysis by European health experts determined that in developed countries as a whole, tobacco is responsible for 24% of all male deaths and 7% of all female deaths; these figures rise to over 40% in men in some countries of central and eastern Europe and to 17% in women in the United States. The average decreased life span of smokers is approximately eight years…
Despite this, Mike Pence said:
“Time for a quick reality check. Despite the hysteria from the political class and the media, smoking doesn’t kill.”
4 arrested in West Side beating of Trump supporter
November 18, 2016
CHICAGO (WLS) — Chicago police said four people were arrested and charged with vehicular hijacking a week after video of a man being beaten while onlookers yelled ‘Don’t vote for Trump’ went viral.
Julian Christian, 26; Dejuan Collins, 20; Rajane Lewis, 21; and a 17-year-old girl not named by police because she is a juvenile were arrested and charged with one felony count each of vehicular carjacking.
Police said those four are the people seen on a video of a traffic altercation that escalated into a beating in the 1100-block of South Kedzie on Nov. 9. In the video, 50-year-old David Wilcox is kicked and punched repeatedly by two men while another person rummages around in his car. The video also shows Wilcox holding onto his car as one man drives away.
In the video onlookers shout “Don’t vote for Trump!” as they watch. Wilcox said he did, in fact, vote for Donald Trump but that his attackers had no way of knowing that. He said he did not believe the attack was politically motivated.
Police said they arrested Christian first, who then identified the others.
Donald Trump’s Companies Destroyed Emails in Defiance of Court Orders
October 31, 2016
Donald Trump has a long, troubling history of destroying and hiding important documents in lawsuits, but he thinks Hillary Clinton’s the one who should be going to jail.
Over the course of decades, Donald Trump’s companies have systematically destroyed or hidden thousands of emails, digital records and paper documents demanded in official proceedings, often in defiance of court orders. These tactics—exposed by a Newsweek review of thousands of pages of court filings, judicial orders and affidavits from an array of court cases—have enraged judges, prosecutors, opposing lawyers and the many ordinary citizens entangled in litigation with Trump. In each instance, Trump and entities he controlled also erected numerous hurdles that made lawsuits drag on for years, forcing courtroom opponents to spend huge sums of money in legal fees as they struggled—sometimes in vain—to obtain records.
This behavior is of particular import given Trump’s frequent condemnations of Hillary Clinton, his Democratic opponent, for having deleted more than 30,000 emails from a server she used during her time as secretary of state. While Clinton and her lawyers have said all of those emails were personal, Trump has suggested repeatedly on the campaign trail that they were government documents Clinton was trying to hide and that destroying them constituted a crime. The allegation—which the FBI concluded was not supported by any evidence—is a crowd-pleaser at Trump rallies, often greeted by supporters chanting, “Lock her up!”
Trump’s use of deception and untruthful affidavits, as well as the hiding or improper destruction of documents, dates back to at least 1973, when the Republican nominee, his father and their real estate company battled the federal government over civil charges that they refused to rent apartments to African-Americans. The Trump strategy was simple: deny, impede and delay, while destroying documents the court had ordered them to hand over.
Shortly after the government filed its case in October, Trump attacked: He falsely declared to reporters that the feds had no evidence he and his father discriminated against minorities, but instead were attempting to force them to lease to welfare recipients who couldn’t pay their rent.
The family’s attempts to slow down the federal case were at times nonsensical. Trump submitted an affidavit contending that the government had engaged in some unspecified wrongdoing by releasing statements to the press on the day it brought the case without first having any “formal communications” with him; he contended that he’d learned of the complaint only while listening to his car radio that morning. But Trump’s sworn statement was a lie. Court records show that the government had filed its complaint at 10 a.m. and phoned him almost immediately afterward. The government later notified the media with a press release.
Prosecutors responded to Trump’s affidavit by showing he had fudged his claim by using the term “formal communication”—an acknowledgment, they said, that he had received what only he would characterize as an informal notification—which they described as an intentional effort to mislead the court and the public. But the allegation slowed the case; it required government lawyers to appear in court to shoot down Trump’s false charge.
The Trumps had more delaying tactics. Trump announced in a press conference that his family and their company were bringing a $100 million countersuit against the government for libel; anonymous tenants and community leaders, he said, had been calling and writing letters expressing shock at the government’s “outrageous lies.” Once again, motions, replies and hearings followed. Once again, the court threw out the Trump allegations.
For months, the Trumps ignored the government’s discovery demands, even though court procedure in a civil or criminal case requires each side to produce relevant documents in a timely manner. This allows for the plaintiffs or prosecutors to develop more evidence in support of their claims, as well as for the defense to gather proof to fight the case against them. When litigation is filed or even contemplated, scrupulous lawyers and corporations immediately impose document-retention programs or require that any shredding or disposing of records be halted. Courts have handed down severe sanctions or even criminal charges of obstruction of justice against executives and companies that destroyed records because they knew they were going to be sued.
Yet when the government filed its standard discovery requests, the Trumps reacted as though seeking that information was outrageous. They argued in court that prosecutors had no case and wanted to riffle through corporate files on a fishing expedition. Once again, this led to more delays, more replies, more hearings…and another specious argument thrown out of court.
Six months after the original filing, the case was nowhere because the Trumps had repeatedly ignored the deadlines to produce records and answers to questions, known as interrogatories. When a government attorney finally telephoned a Trump lawyer to find out why, he was told the Trumps had not even begun preparing their answers and had no plans to do so. The Trumps also postponed and blocked depositions, refused to provide a description of their records, as required, and would not turn over any documents.
Finally, under subpoena, Trump appeared for a short deposition. When asked about the missing documents, he made a shocking admission: The Trumps had been destroying their corporate records for the previous six months and had no document-retention program. They had conducted no inspections to determine which files might have been sought in the discovery requests or might otherwise be related to the case. Instead, in order to “save space,” Trump testified, officials with his company had been tossing documents into the shredder and garbage.
The government dashed to court, seeking sanctions against the Trumps. Prosecutors asked the judge to allow them to search through the corporate files or simply declare the Trumps in default and enter a judgment against them. The judge opted to allow the government access to the company offices so they could find the records themselves.
In three letters and three phone calls, the government notified the Trumps that this inspection would take place on June 12, 1974. When they arrived at the Trump offices, Trump was there, but he and everyone else were “surprised” that prosecutors had come and refused to allow them access to documents without their defense lawyers present. A prosecutor called those lawyers, but they were not in their offices. The frustrated prosecutors then gave up and headed back to court.
They were then hit with a new delaying tactic. The Trumps submitted a filing based on statements by Trump that radically misrepresented what had occurred that day. He claimed a prosecutor, Donna Goldstein, had arrived at the company without notifying the Trumps’ counsel, refused to telephone their lawyer and demanded access to Trump’s office. The prosecutor—accompanied, the Trumps claimed, by five “stormtroopers”—then banged on doors throughout the office, insisting she and her team be allowed to “swarm haphazardly through all the Trump files and to totally disrupt their daily business routine.”
At the same time, in a move that caused another huge delay, the Trumps claimed that Goldstein had been threatening Trump employees who were potential witnesses. In several instances, the employees signed affidavits stating they had been subjected to abuse by Goldstein, then denied it when they were forced to testify. Even one of the government’s key witnesses, Thomas Miranda—who told the government the Trumps instructed managers to flag applications from minorities and that he was afraid the family would physically harm him—suddenly announced that prosecutors had threatened him and that he had never provided any evidence against the Trumps.
These allegations of misconduct, which demanded sanctions against the government for abusing its power, required more hearings. Once again, the Trump claims went nowhere.
In June 1975, more than 18 months after the government filed the case and with the Trumps still withholding potentially relevant records, the two sides struck a settlement. The agreement—which, like all civil settlements, did not contain an admission of guilt—compelled the Trumps to comply with federal housing regulations against discrimination, adopt specific policies to advance that goal, to notify the community that apartments would be rented to anyone, regardless of race, and meet other requirements.
The Trumps ignored these requirements and still refused to rent apartments to minorities, something the government proved by sending African-Americans and non-Hispanic Caucasians to pose as applicants. The government brought another complaint against the Trumps in 1978, who then agreed to a new settlement.
In that case, the government had the financial wherewithal to fight back against abuses of the courts and the discovery process by the Trump family. But many private litigants, who have to spend their own money and hire their own lawyers, have been ground down by Trump’s litigation-as-warfare-without-rules approach.
Courts are loath to impose sanctions when litigants fail to comply with discovery demands; in order to hurry cases along, judges frequently issue new orders setting deadlines and requirements on parties that fail to produce documents. But Trump and his companies did get sanctioned for lying about the existence of a crucial document to avoid losing a suit.
In 2009, a group of plaintiffs claimed Trump duped them into buying apartments in a Fort Lauderdale, Florida, development by portraying it as one of his projects. The fine print of the dense and legalistic purchase contracts, however, revealed that Trump had agreed only to license his name to the developers, and when the project hit financial snags, he walked away from it.
In their initial disclosures in 2011, Trump and his company said they had no insurance to cover any of their liability in this case. That was important because an insurance policy lets the plaintiffs calculate how much money a defendant can pay in a settlement without suffering any direct financial consequences. In other words, that insurance lets the plaintiff know how aggressively to pursue a settlement, knowing the defendant will have some losses covered by the policy.
At the time, a settlement in the then-prominent case could have been disastrous for Trump; he faced an array of similar lawsuits because he had licensed his name to developers around the world for projects that later collapsed. In each case, Trump had marketed the developments as his own, a claim contradicted by the sales contracts. A settlement in any of these cases might have encouraged other people who had lost deposits in a Trump-marketed development to file lawsuits against him.
Two years after denying that Trump had insurance that could have been used to settle the Fort Lauderdale litigation, one of his lawyers made a startling admission: Trump and his company had been insured all along for up to $5 million. But no more—the policy had recently “dried up,” the lawyer said. Stunned, the apartment buyers filed a motion seeking sanctions against Trump and his company, arguing that the case “may very well have settled long ago had the plaintiffs been provided with the policy in a timely manner,” according to a court filing.
Alan Garten, General Counsel at the Trump Organization for the past decade, said that at the time of the original disclosure, the company’s lawyers did not believe that the policy covered any potential liability in the lawsuit, which he said was an error on his part. “This solely fell on me, and if anyone is to blame for that, it’s me,’’ he said. “It was completely an innocent oversight. And it was my innocent oversight.’’ Garten said the other cases in this article preceded his time at the company and he did not know the facts surrounding them. In the Ft. Lauderdale case, Federal Judge Kathleen Williams ruled in favor of the plaintiffs and ordered Trump to pay limited legal fees for failing to disclose the policy, then held in reserve the possibility of imposing additional sanctions. The case subsequently settled.
Perhaps the worst legal case involving Trump and his companies hiding and destroying emails and other records involved real estate developer Cordish Cos., which, through an affiliate called Power Plant Entertainment LLC, built two American Indian casinos in Florida. In January 2005, Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts sued in a state court almost immediately after the opening of the casinos, which both operate under the Hard Rock brand. In his lawsuit, Trump claimed that the companies had unlawfully conspired with one of his former associates to cheat him out of the deal; he argued that the projects should be turned over to him.
Negotiations with the tribe and construction of the casinos had taken many years, raising the possibility that the state’s four-year statute of limitations had passed before Trump finally got around to filing his lawsuit. If Power Plant could prove Trump knew in early 2000 that his former associate was working on the Hard Rock deal, the case would be thrown out of court. The clock here for the statute of limitations starts ticking down when plaintiffs learn they have been swindled.
Trump claimed he learned about the deal in January 2001, about the time of the groundbreaking and more than three years before he filed suit. However, the defendants contended he had been informed of the projects in 1999. Trump offered no evidence in support of his contention except his word, so the opposing lawyers filed extensive discovery demands, seeking emails, computer files, calendars and other records that might prove he knew about the casino deal before 2000.
A full year into the case, Trump and his company, Trump Hotels, had produced only a single box of documents, many of which were not relevant—and no emails, digital files, phone records, calendars or even documents Trump lawyers had promised to turn over. Interrogatories were still unanswered. Lawyers for Power Plant obtained a court order compelling Trump and his company to comply with the discovery demands and hand over the relevant information and documents.
In a March 2006 response, Trump’s lawyers argued that the emails and other electronic documents had not been produced because the company didn’t have them. They claimed it had no servers until 2001—the year Trump claimed he had learned of the Power Plant project. They also claimed Trump Hotels had no policy regarding retaining documents until 2003. In other words, they hadn’t turned over any emails because no emails had been saved on a Trump server.
Judge Jeffrey Streitfeld reacted with near disbelief. “I don’t have the patience for this,” he said. “This has been going on too long to have to listen—and I don’t mean to be disrespectful—to this double-talk. There has to be an attitude adjustment from the plaintiff.”
Streitfeld ordered Trump executives to file sworn statements attesting to how their email systems had worked from 1996 onward. In response, Trump Hotels filed an affidavit from one of its information technology managers stating that it had had no servers prior to 2001.
That was false and by deposing numerous IT specialists with two Trump companies—the Trump Organization and Trump Hotels—lawyers for Power Plant gradually chipped away at it. Finally, during a deposition nine months after he had signed the deceptive affidavit, the same Trump executive admitted his assertions in it were untrue. In fact, an IBM Domino server for emails and other files had been installed in 1999, the same year witnesses for Power Plant contended that Trump had learned of the casino deal. Prior to that, as early as 1997, the Trump corporations used servers off-site operated by a company called Jersey Cape, according to sworn testimony by one of the Trump IT experts; the following year, the Trump Organization and Trump Hotels moved to another email provider, Technology 21.
These startling revelations changed nothing, however, because there was no trove of documents. The Trump records had been destroyed. Despite knowing back in 2001 that Trump might want to file a lawsuit, his companies had deleted emails and other records without checking if they might be evidence in his case. Beginning around 2003, the company wiped clear the data from everyone’s computers every year. Lawyers for Trump Hotels had never sent out the usual communication issued during litigation instructing employees to stop destroying records that might be related to this case. The deletions continued, and backup tapes were reused—thus erasing the data they held. Power Plant lawyers also discovered that after the lawsuit was filed, Trump Hotels disposed of a key witness’s computer without preserving the data on it.
In subsequent filings, Power Plant maintained that Trump Hotels had intentionally deceived the court in its March 2006 filing when it claimed it had located no emails relevant to the case because, at that point, it had not yet conducted any searches of its computer system. Trump Hotels executives did not instruct their IT department to examine backup computer tapes until 2007, and even then the job wasn’t done, depositions show. And when computer specialists finally attempted to electronically locate any relevant documents that had survived the flurry of deletions, the procedures were absurdly inadequate. While looking for relevant documents, the technology team was told to use only two search terms—the name of the tribe and the last name of the former Trump associate. So even if there was an email that stated, “Donald Trump learned the full details of the Hard Rock casino deal in Florida in 1999,” it would not have been found by this search.
With all this proof that Trump Hotels had ignored every court order and filed false documents, Power Plant asked the judge either to impose sanctions or allow its own expert to search for relevant digital records. Trump Hotels argued it had done nothing improper, although its lawyers acknowledged having made some mistakes. Still, Streitfeld ordered Trump Hotels to make its servers and computer systems available for inspection by a computer forensics consulting firm. That review showed there was no digital data in the computers, servers or backup tapes prior to January 2001—the very month Trump claimed to have learned of the Florida casino deal.
With the likelihood of sanctions growing, Trump Hotels dropped the suit a few months later, in part because of the company’s financial troubles. A company involved in the Power Plant case agreed to purchase one of Trump’s struggling casinos in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and included as part of the deal a requirement that the litigation be ended.
This review of Trump’s many decades of abusing the judicial system, ignoring judges, disregarding rules, destroying documents and lying about it is not simply a sordid history lesson. Rather, it helps explain his behavior since he declared his candidacy. He promised to turn over his tax returns and his health records—just as he promised to comply with document discovery requirements in so many lawsuits—then reneged. As a result, he has left a sparse evidentiary trail that can be used to assess his wealth, his qualifications for the presidency or even his fitness. Should voters choose him to be the next U.S. president, he will enter the Oval Office as a mystery, a man who has repeatedly flouted the rules. He has solemnly told the country to trust him while refusing to produce any records to prove whether he speaks the truth or has utter contempt for it.
Trump-Loving Man Throws Tantrum At Black Starbucks Employee Over Coffee
David Sanguesa claims he was “racially discriminated against.”
November 17, 2016
A South Florida man was filmed ranting at a Starbucks barista after he claims he was denied service for supporting Donald Trump.
In a video posted to Twitter on Wednesday, David Sanguesa, who is white, can be heard calling an African-American barista “trash” and “garbage” while accusing her of discriminating against him at the Miami cafe.
“Because I voted for Trump. Trump. You lost,” he tells the unidentified employee before asking for his money back. “You’re garbage. You’re complete trash.”
Starbucks customer Jorge de Cárdenas, who caught the explosive scene on his cell phone, told The Huffington Post that Sanguesa claimed “white discrimination” shortly before he started filming.
Sanguesa didn’t deny that claim in an interview with the Miami Herald.
“I was racially discriminated against,” he insisted, vowing to sue the coffee company.
Sanguesa, speaking to HuffPost, apologized for his actions but accused the barista of holding a grudge against him after he began holding Trump campaign meets at the Coral Gables location that he’s visited for 12 years.
“Her face was the face of death yesterday. It was evil,” he said of the barista’s supposed attitude toward him.
Asked whether she had said anything that would support his beliefs that she’s anti-Trump, he said: “It’s just from personal experience. She’s never been kind to me or my group.”
Sanguesa said he finally exploded after he and a real estate broker waited 25 minutes Wednesday for coffee that he said never came.
“I paid for the coffee and I never was served,” he insisted. “She said, ‘I’ll get to you when I feel like it.’”
In the near two-minute video, below, Sanguesa verbally attacks the woman and nearly comes to blows with another man who stands up to defend the barista. That man tells Sanguesa that he doesn’t know what happened, but that no one should be spoken to that way.
“I want to punch you out,” Sanguesa is heard calling to the man after the man turns his back to him.
A manager at the Starbucks where the incident took place declined to comment when reached by HuffPost. A spokesman for the company said they are working to understand what transpired.
“Embracing diversity and treating each other with respect and dignity is core to Starbucks values and something our partners take great pride in showing,” he said in a statement. “We are committed to providing an inclusive, supportive and safe work environment for everyone.”
According to the Miami Herald’s report, Sanguesa is a frequent writer to the paper, and over the years has voiced anger against President Barack Obama, women and Cuban-Americans.
“I hate Cubans … all pieces of s*** … including Jose Fernandez,” he reportedly said in one email to the paper, responding to a story on the death of the Cuban-born Miami Marlins pitcher.
Sanguesa reportedly has also had run-ins with South Miami police, and in 2014 was arrested for a domestic dispute. The case was later dropped, the Herald reported.
Though Sanguesa’s opinions appear clear, whether he received his coffee at an unusually slow pace is not. De Cárdenas, who filmed the spectacle and said he initially thought Sanguesa was being facetious, declined to say whether he believed the barista deliberately took her time serving Sanguesa.
“I can confirm he was there before I was and I received my coffee before him,” he told HuffPost. “I received an espresso pretty quickly.”
He added that the barista “was entirely polite, all things considered.”
Facebook fake-news writer: ‘I think Donald Trump is in the White House because of me’
November 17, 2016
What do the Amish lobby, gay wedding vans and the ban of the national anthem have in common? For starters, they’re all make-believe — and invented by the same man.
Paul Horner, the 38-year-old impresario of a Facebook fake-news empire, has made his living off viral news hoaxes for several years. He has twice convinced the Internet that he’s British graffiti artist Banksy; he also published the very viral, very fake news of a Yelp vs. “South Park” lawsuit last year.
But in recent months, Horner has found the fake-news ecosystem growing more crowded, more political and vastly more influential: In March, Donald Trump’s son Eric and his then-campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, even tweeted links to one of Horner’s faux-articles. His stories have also appeared as news on Google.
In light of concerns that stories like Horner’s may have affected the presidential election, and in the wake of announcements that both Google and Facebook would take action against deceptive outlets, Intersect called Horner to discuss his perspective on fake news. This transcript has been edited for clarity, length and — ahem — bad language.
You’ve been writing fake news for a while now — you’re kind of like the OG Facebook news hoaxer. Well, I’d call it hoaxing or fake news. You’d call it parody or satire. How is that scene different now than it was three or five years ago? Why did something like your story about Obama invalidating the election results (almost 250,000 Facebook shares, as of this writing) go so viral?
Honestly, people are definitely dumber. They just keep passing stuff around. Nobody fact-checks anything anymore — I mean, that’s how Trump got elected. He just said whatever he wanted, and people believed everything, and when the things he said turned out not to be true, people didn’t care because they’d already accepted it. It’s real scary. I’ve never seen anything like it.
You mentioned Trump, and you’ve probably heard the argument, or the concern, that fake news somehow helped him get elected. What do you make of that?
My sites were picked up by Trump supporters all the time. I think Trump is in the White House because of me. His followers don’t fact-check anything — they’ll post everything, believe anything. His campaign manager posted my story about a protester getting paid $3,500 as fact. Like, I made that up. I posted a fake ad on Craigslist.
Just ’cause his supporters were under the belief that people were getting paid to protest at their rallies, and that’s just insane. I’ve gone to Trump protests — trust me, no one needs to get paid to protest Trump. I just wanted to make fun of that insane belief, but it took off. They actually believed it.
I thought they’d fact-check it, and it’d make them look worse. I mean that’s how this always works: Someone posts something I write, then they find out it’s false, then they look like idiots. But Trump supporters — they just keep running with it! They never fact-check anything! Now he’s in the White House. Looking back, instead of hurting the campaign, I think I helped it. And that feels [bad].
You think you personally helped elect Trump?
I don’t know. I don’t know if I did or not. I don’t know. I don’t know.
I guess I’m curious, if you believed you might be having an unfair impact on the election — especially if that impact went against your own political beliefs — why didn’t you stop? Why keep writing?
I didn’t think it was possible for him to get elected president. I thought I was messing with the campaign, maybe I wasn’t messing them up as much as I wanted — but I never thought he’d actually get elected. I didn’t even think about it. In hindsight, everyone should’ve seen this coming — everyone assumed Hillary [Clinton] would just get in. But she didn’t, and Trump is president.
Speaking of Clinton — did you target fake news at her supporters? Or Gary Johnson’s, for that matter? (Horner’s Facebook picture shows him at a rally for Johnson.)
No. I hate Trump.
Is that it? You posted on Facebook a couple weeks ago that you had a lot of ideas for satirizing Clinton and other figures, but that “no joke . . . in doing this for six years, the people who clicked ads the most, like it’s the cure for cancer, is right-wing Republicans.” That makes it sound like you’ve found targeting conservatives is more profitable.
Yeah, it is. They don’t fact-check.
But a Trump presidency is good for you from a business perspective, right?
It’s great for anybody who does anything with satire — there’s nothing you can’t write about now that people won’t believe. I can write the craziest thing about Trump, and people will believe it. I wrote a lot of crazy anti-Muslim stuff — like about Trump wanting to put badges on Muslims, or not allowing them in the airport, or making them stand in their own line — and people went along with it!
Facebook and Google recently announced that they’d no longer let fake-news sites use their advertising platforms. I know you basically make your living from those services. How worried are you about this?
This whole Google AdSense thing is pretty scary. And all this Facebook stuff. I make most of my money from AdSense — like, you wouldn’t believe how much money I make from it. Right now I make like $10,000 a month from AdSense.
I know ways of getting hooked up under different names and sites. So probably if they cracked down, I would try different things. I have at least 10 sites right now. If they crack down on a couple, I’ll just use others. They could shut down advertising on all my sites, and I think I’d be okay. Plus, Facebook and AdSense make a lot of money from [advertising on fake news sites] for them to just get rid of it. They’d lose a lot of money.
But if it did really go away, that would suck. I don’t know what I would do.
Thinking about this less selfishly, though — it might be good if Facebook and Google took action, right? Because the effects you’re describing are pretty scary.
Yeah, I mean — a lot of the sites people are talking about, they’re just total BS sites. There’s no creativity or purpose behind them. I’m glad they’re getting rid of them. I don’t like getting lumped in with Huzlers. I like getting lumped in with the Onion. The stuff I do — I spend more time on it. There’s purpose and meaning behind it. I don’t just write fake news just to write it.
So, yeah, I see a lot of the sites they’re listing, and I’m like — good. There are so many horrible sites out there. I’m glad they’re getting rid of those sites.
I just hope they don’t get rid of mine, too.
For white nationalists, Trump win a dream come true, says alt-right leader from Dallas
November 16, 2016
Richard Spencer was euphoric the night Donald Trump was elected president.
“When it happened, I thought I might have been dreaming,” he said.
Spencer, a 38-year-old Dallas native and graduate of St. Mark’s School of Texas prep school, is a key intellectual leader of the alternative right, a label he coined in 2008 to describe the radical conservative movement defined by white nationalism and a fervent resistance to multiculturalism and globalism.
In his mind, Trump “is the first step, the first stage towards identity politics for white people.”
“That is something major,” Spencer said Tuesday night. “He’s not your father’s conservative. He’s not in this to promote free markets or neoconservative foreign politics or to protect Israel, for that matter. He’s in this to protect his people. He’s in this to protect the historic American nation.”
During the interview or shortly after it, Spencer’s Twitter account was suspended, along with those of several other prominent alt-right figures. He called the suspensions an act of “corporate Stalinism” carried out to mollify accusations that social media was responsible for Trump’s election — an analysis with which he agrees.
“This is just a sign that we have power,” he says in a video titled “The Knight of the Long Knives,” posted shortly after the “purge.”
Over the course of Trump’s presidential campaign, Spencer and others who championed the president-elect as an “alt-right hero” have blitzed out of the dark corners of the internet and into the national spotlight.
They have attracted thousands of new followers through their use of social media, memes and the internet more broadly. They have been labeled as racists, anti-Semites, xenophobes and bigots. They’re self-identified “deplorables” who claim they’ve been silenced by mainstream conservatism for far too long.
And if you ask them, Trump’s election on Nov. 9 made them the “vanguards” of American conservatism. In short, they believe they just hijacked the GOP.
“They are a conscious repudiation of the American conservative movement,” said Dan Morenoff, a 42-year-old lawyer from North Dallas and former head of the Republican Jewish Coalition chapter in North Texas. “They affirmatively reject the American ideals that conservatives have tried to conserve over the last 50 years. But I think a better description for them is barbarians. They are barbarians who would replace American culture with an ethno-national state.”
The Southern Poverty Law Center labeled Spencer an “academic racist” who takes a “quasi-intellectual approach to white separatism.”
Spencer prefers to call himself an “identitarian” but will accept white nationalist. He is adamant that he’s not a white supremacist, which implies a desire for whites to rule over nonwhites. Such a hierarchy would be “disastrous,” he said.
He’s the editor of Radix Journal, an online magazine focused on alt-right theory, and he serves as director and president of the National Policy Institute, an alt-right think tank he plans to use as a vessel to push Trump further in the direction of anti-war, anti-immigration and, most importantly, pro-white policies.
He envisions a white ethno-state utopia, devoid of black people, Muslims, Jews, Asians or anyone else without a common European heritage and culture. He believes white people in America have become rootless wanderers, displaced by immigrants who are now waging a kind of proxy war against the European cultural foundation upon which the U.S. was built.
“Look, I care about my people more than I care about others,” Spencer said. “It’s very simple. What form that takes, I don’t know. But I don’t believe in equality. I don’t care about everyone. I don’t care about the world. I want to fight for my people first.”
He says he holds no animosity for people of color and other minorities. In fact, he said he sympathizes with their plight in America and understands “why they never felt part of this country.”
But his sympathies don’t override what he believes is the inherent, genetically motivated animosity different races hold toward each other. Because of this natural hate, he believes walls will ultimately be more successful in promoting peace than bridges will be.
These views have some local Jewish community members “horrified,” but Morenoff said no one has any reason to be afraid. The alt-right may support Trump, but the general sentiment in the American community is far from the hate he says they espouse. He is however “preaching constant vigilance to people — wherever they are on the political spectrum.”
Other critics, like Denton activist Deborah Armintor, consider the movement a fantasy that is no less frightening for its flawed philosophy.
“They call themselves the alt-right, but I see that as a code word for white supremacism,” said Armintor.
Armintor, a faculty member in the English department and the Jewish and Israel Studies program at the University of North Texas, ran for an at-large seat on the Denton City Council this year but lost.
She says she was “paralyzed” for two days after Trump’s election but has since “snapped back into action” and will resist the “new vision for America” represented by the alt-right, which she says the president-elect “glommed on to.”
Armintor said the entire foundation of the white nationalist philosophy is flawed and a “complete fantasy.” North America was originally settled by Native Americans, and it was only after Europeans forcibly removed them from the land, and introduced slavery to the new continent, that European culture flourished.
In her mind, America has always been and will be a multicultural nation, albeit one with a complicated and painful history.
“I don’t have to make a case or plea for my existence or any of my friends’ existences. We’re here,” she said. “It’s the white supremacist, it’s those people who have to explain their position. They’re the ones who have to explain how they can dare to say these things in America after the Holocaust and genocides all over the world because of precisely these attitudes.”
Spencer currently resides in the resort town of Whitefish, Montana, in what was described as a “Bavarian-style mansion” in a profile in Mother Jones. He was born in Massachusetts but moved to the Preston Hollow neighborhood of Dallas when he was about 2 years old.
“It was a fairly idyllic, suburban childhood,” Spencer said with a laugh. “I remember riding bikes around the neighborhood, and so on. I guess you could say I lived in a bubble to a certain extent, like a lot of the kids in that area. But it was very nice.”
He attended St. Mark’s School of Texas, one of the most prestigious all-boys prep schools in the Southwest. He described himself as an average student who didn’t stand out among the bright minds surrounding him. He played varsity football and baseball. He directed a minimalist stage play titled K2 about two men stuck on a mountain 27,000 feet above sea level.
“You would’ve never guessed that I would become a political radical,” he said. “When I was a kid in Dallas — even a young man in Dallas — I was not a political radical. I don’t think there was anything in my childhood that inspired me to go down this path. If anything, I went down this path in spite of my background.”
Spencer said his father, a Dallas-based ophthalmologist, and mother are registered Republicans who aren’t passionate about politics and have “mainstream” conservative opinions and morals. He described them as “standard Episcopalian Dallasites.”
“Their political beliefs are not mine,” Spencer said. “I’m a bit of a black sheep.”
According to Mother Jones, Spencer was friends with the only black student in his class at St. Mark’s, John Lewis. Lewis said he never thought Spencer was a racist, but another student told Mother Jones they remembered Spencer making “conservative, racially laced comments.”
Spencer dismissed the claim, saying he didn’t come to hold his radical views until college. He earned his undergraduate degree at the University of Virginia, where he double-majored in English and music.
During this period, he was influenced by the writings of Friedrich Nietzsche and Jared Taylor, a founding figure in the American white nationalist movement and editor of American Renaissance.
“I think my personality was open to these ideas,” he said. “I think it was a combination of nature and nurture. I was who I was, even as a child.”
He later studied humanities at the University of Chicago and then pursued a doctoral degree at Duke University for two years before he was offered at job at The American Conservative magazine and dropped out.
He was eventually fired because of his radical views, and in December 2009, he started AlternativeRight.com, which eventually became Radix Journal. In 2011 he became president of the National Policy Institute and has used it as a platform to promote his white nationalist ideas ever since.
The day after Trump was elected president, Spencer streamed a video on Periscope of himself describing his feelings about the results and what they represented. Viewers thanked him for laying the groundwork for Trump’s election. But he humbly deflected the congratulatory remarks.
“This really was one of the greatest moments of my life,” he said. “It’s hard to explain how enthusiastic I was last night. This is what I’ve been living for.”
Days after Trump was elected, he appointed Steve Bannon, the former executive of Brietbart News who is credited with guiding Trump’s campaign to victory, as his chief strategist.
The appointment drew heavy criticism because Breitbart has often been deemed a mouthpiece for the alt-right movement and white nationalist writers. Many Democratic legislators called for Trump to rescind the offer.
Spencer, on the other hand, welcomed the appointment and said it was the “best possible position” for Bannon in the Trump White House.
“Bannon will answer directly to Trump and focus on the big picture, and not get lost in the weeds,” he tweeted. “Bannon is not a ‘chief of staff,’ which requires a ‘golden retriever’ personality. He’ll be freed up to chart Trump’s macro trajectory.”
Armintor and Morenoff, two 42-year-old professionals from the Dallas area, are on opposite ends of the political spectrum but have both met Trump’s election with far more reserve. And they both stand in direct, aggressive opposition to the alt-right and white nationalism.
Armintor said she remains horrified but motivated to work at a local level to promote civic engagement and unity.
Morenoff said the alt-right’s rise is “deeply troubling,” but he will continue to scrutinize the executive branch.
“The alt-right is very happy about the election of Donald Trump,” he said. “They have adopted him as a mascot, but that doesn’t mean their feelings are mutual.”
While he doesn’t know if alt-right figures will be satisfied or disappointed by a Trump presidency, he recognizes this moment in American history as an opportunity to think critically about limited government.
“If the election of one political figure has the power to scare you this much, you should join with conservative groups to make sure the powers of the executive branch are not so strong that they make you feel afraid,” he said.