07/9/19

Voters vs. Google in 2020 General Election

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Donald Trump prevailed against the Google and Eric Schmidt forces but can it happen again?

Civis Analytics is back again and you can bet that Trump’s digital campaign director, Brad Parscale is in a David and Goliath force operation.

So, Free Beacon describes Google, Schmidt and Civis Analytics like this:

A data firm backed by Eric Schmidt, the former executive chairman of Alphabet, Google’s parent company, has been paid millions of dollars by Democratic committees and is currently working for Joe Biden’s presidential campaign.

The idea for what became Civis Analytics emerged in the wake of President Obama’s 2012 re-election when Schmidt pitched Dan Wagner, the campaign’s chief analytics officer, on creating a lasting political data and website services firm. Schmidt, who remained an executive at Google and Alphabet, went on to quietly aid Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. Less than one month after the elections it was announced that he had helped round up $22 million for Civis, where he is also a partial owner and sits on the group’s boardof directors. In June, Schmidt stepped away as executive chairman of Alphabet, although he now acts as a technical advisor to the company’s leadership on policy issues.

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07/9/19

See ICE, Call FIRE

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

They do training. training on protecting our communities from ICE! Bring a Laptop! FIRE is located in several states and quite active in Texas, Illinois, and California. This organization collaborates with RAICES. ‘Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services.

The training by FIRE just for Texas includes:

More than a dozen local and statewide nonprofits — including Dallas Catholic Charities, RAICES, the North Texas Dream Team and the ACLU of Texas — formed the Force for Immigrant Rights and Empowerment, known as FIRE.

The coalition hosts “Know Your Rights” sessions, where immigrants are taught to distinguish between arrest warrants signed by judges and those signed by ICE officers, which don’t grant ICE officers the legal right to enter someone’s home.

Immigrants also learn how to build an emergency family plan in case a parent is arrested and who to call in events of arrests, among other lessons.

President Trump has authorized aggressive deportations of illegal immigrants which hovers around 1 million cases. These deportations are not raids but rather individual cases where the judge has already ordered deportation. There will be some significant law enforcement confrontations as families are harboring these people. Further, there are thousands of households that include non-citizens as well as citizens that are receiving huge financial benefits from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. This has been going on since 1980 and those who are 62-years-old or younger can either be evicted or have their benefits terminated if new rules take effect. HUD estimates it would save the taxpayer up to $210 million per year as just in Texas there are 6,000 households that fit this description. This new policy has not rolled out yet but is slated to occur by the end of the year. See more details here from the Federal Register.

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07/3/19

Jeffrey Epstein Case, Judge Rules Immediate Document Release

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Billionaire Jeffrey Epstein in Cambridge, MA on 9/8/04. Epstein is connected with several prominent people including politicians, actors, and academics. Epstein was convicted of having sex with an underage woman. (Photo by Rick Friedman/Rick Friedman Photography/Corbis via Getty Images)

In part from the text of the Judge’s decision:

Accordingly, we VACATE the District Court’s orders entered on November 2, 2016, May 3, 2017, and August 27, 2018, ORDER the unsealing of the summary judgment record as described further herein, and REMAND the cause to the District Court for particularized review of the remaining sealed materials. Judge Pooler concurs in this opinion except insofar as it orders the immediate unsealing of the summary judgment record without a remand.

The origins of this case lie in a decade‐old criminal proceeding against financier Jeffrey Epstein (“Epstein”). On June 30, 2008, Epstein pleaded guilty to Florida state charges of soliciting, and procuring a person under the age of eighteen for, prostitution. The charges stemmed from sexual activity with privately hired “masseuses,” some of whom were under eighteen, Florida’s age of consent. Pursuant to an agreement with state and federal prosecutors, Epstein pleaded to the state charges. He received limited jail‐time, registered as a sex offender, and agreed to pay compensation to his victims. In return, prosecutors declined to bring federal charges. Shortly after Epstein entered his plea, two of his victims, proceeding as “Jane Doe 1” and “Jane Doe 2,” filed suit against the Government in the Southern District of Florida under the Crime Victims’ Rights Act (“CVRA”). The victims sought to nullify the plea agreement, alleging that the Government failed to fulfill its legal obligations to inform and consult with them in the process leading up to Epstein’s plea deal.1 On December 30, 2014, two additional unnamed victims—one of whom has now self‐identified as Plaintiff‐Appellee Virginia Giuffre (“Giuffre”)—petitioned to join in the CVRA case. These petitioners included in their filings not only descriptions of sexual abuse by Epstein, but also new allegations of sexual abuse by several other prominent individuals, “including numerous prominent American politicians, powerful business executives, foreign presidents, a well‐known Prime Minister, and other world leaders,” as well as Dershowitz (a long‐time member of the Harvard Law School faculty who had worked on Epstein’s legal defense) and Defendant‐Appellee Ghislaine Maxwell (“Maxwell”).2

Read the full decision here.

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07/2/19

Where Is That 8.5 Tons Of Uranium Sent From Iran To Russia?

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Remember? During the Christmas holiday in 2015, so you easily could have missed the news or just forgotten it due to spiked eggnog.

Washington (AFP) – Iran sent a major shipment of low-enriched uranium materials to Russia on Monday, a key step in Tehran’s implementation of this year’s historic nuclear accord with world powers.

The United States hailed the move, which Secretary of State John Kerry said marked “significant progress” in Tehran’s fulfillment of a deal to stop it developing nuclear weapons.

The Russian foreign ministry confirmed the report after Ali Akbar Salehi, head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, told the ISNA news agency: “The fuel exchange process has taken place.”

According to ISNA’s report, Iran had sent 8.5 tons of low-enriched nuclear material to Russia and received “around 140 tons of natural uranium in return.”

State Department spokesman Mark Toner described the cargo as a 25,000-pound “combination of forms of low-enriched uranium materials” including five and 20 percent enriched uranium, scrap metal and unfinished fuel plates. More here.

Kerry said that Iran’s shipment to Russia had already tripled the amount of time it would take to produce enough fuel for a bomb from two or three months up to six or nine.

And he dubbed it “a significant step toward Iran meeting its commitment to have no more than 300 kilograms of low-enriched uranium by Implementation Day.”

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07/2/19

Possible Details On Iran For Trump Briefings

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

For context, here is the background on the UN Arms Embargo on Iran.

1. The rapidly expiring “sunset provisions” – which will lift existing restrictions on Iran’s military, missiles, and nuclear programs – were a key factor in President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the flawed Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in May last year. The first of the sunset provisions, the arms embargo under U.N. Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2231, will expire by October 18, 2020.

In its report, JCPOA Sunset AlertUnited Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) details the hazards once UNSCR 2231’s arms transfer provisions expire. Guns, howitzers, mortars, battle tanks, armored combat vehicles, combat aircraft, attack helicopters, warships, and missiles or missile systems will proliferate throughout the region.

2. The European Union is skirting the Iran sanction architecture by launching INSTEX. Based in Paris, it is managed by Per Fischer a German banker and the UK is heading the supervisory board.

The channel, set up by Germany, France, and the UK, is called INSTEX — short for “Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges.”

“We’re making clear that we didn’t just talk about keeping the nuclear deal with Iran alive, but now we’re creating a possibility to conduct business transactions,” German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas told reporters Thursday after a meeting with European counterparts in Bucharest, Romania.

“This is a precondition for us to meet the obligations we entered into in order to demand from Iran that it doesn’t begin military uranium enrichment,” Maas said.

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07/2/19

ANTIFA And The CVE Programs

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Source: Scott Olson/Getty

So far we can label this a failure… gotta wonder if residents in Portland were told to shelter in place or did they just do it on their own.

The DHS website last updated in 2016 with respect to Countering Violent Extremism reads in part as follows:

Terrorism Prevention Partnerships

Violent extremist threats come from a range of groups and individuals, including domestic terrorists and homegrown violent extremists in the United States, as well as international terrorist groups like al-Qaeda and ISIL. Lone offenders or small groups may be radicalized to commit violence at home or attempt to travel overseas to become foreign fighters. The use of the Internet and social media to recruit and radicalize individuals to violence means that conventional approaches are unlikely to identify and disrupt all terrorist plots.

Here in the United States, acts perpetrated by violent extremists can have far-reaching consequences. Terrorism Prevention Partnerships (TPP) have therefore become a key focus of DHS’s work to secure the homeland. TPP aims to address the root causes of violent extremism by providing resources to communities to build and sustain local prevention efforts and promote the use of counter-narratives to confront violent extremist messaging online.  Building relationships based on trust with communities is essential to this effort.

See something say something? Okay… Did the Portland Police report anything? The Mayor? The Governor? The citizens of Portland?

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07/2/19

Close The Camps Protests Scheduled Nationally

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Here we go: Go to Closethecampsnow dot org to get the information.

This Tuesday, July 2, while members of Congress are home for the Fourth of July holiday, we will gather at their local offices in protest. Our demands:

  1. Close the Camps
  2. Not One Dollar for Family Detention
 and Deportation
  3. Bear Witness and Reunite Families

Will you join a local Close the Camps protest near you this Tuesday, July 2? Find an event and bring everyone you know.

***

Meanwhile, just published:

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06/24/19

Odebrecht Files for Bankruptcy Protection

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

When a huge global construction conglomerate like Odebrecht ends up in a John Podesta email released by Wikileaks, one should take some notice, right?

Odebrecht, the Brazilian company that is synonymous with corruption, decided to file for bankruptcy protection on Monday after years of graft scandals and trials involving top Latin American businessmen and politicians. Founded in 1944 as a construction company, Odebrecht expanded into the chemical and energy industries to become one of Brazil’s largest conglomerates. It counts among its building achievements the Miami International Airport, the Lisbon metro, and Brazil’s Transnordestina railway. At one point, its global success was seen to have symbolized Brazil’s economic boom.

In part published in 2017:

Odebrecht has confessed to paying $98 million in bribes to the governments of Venezuela’s Hugo Chávez and of his successor Nicolás Maduro over the last decade. If the allegations are true, Venezuela has received the most bribes from the construction group outside of Brazil. Next on the list is Panama with $59 million for which 17 executives and former officials have been charged while President Juan Carlos Varela has been accused. Varela, who had been advocating for proposed charges to be filed, became implicated in February by one of the partners of Mossack Fonseca —the law firm at the center of last year’s Panama Papers scandal —who said Varela admitted to him he accepted bribes from Odebrecht, accusations Varela has denied. Peruvian authorities, similarly to Varela, had been taking aggressive measures to fight Odebrecht-related corruption involving $30.4 million in bribes until their own names became implicated. Toledo, as well as former President Alan García, are being investigated by Operation Car Wash while a third former president, Ollanta Humala, has been implicated by Marcelo Odebrecht himself, but he has not been named in the investigations.

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06/24/19

More Executive Action Against Iran

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Photo: Alex Brandon AP

Due to timing, it is assumed rather than a U.S. military strike campaign against designated targets as a result of Iran shooting down a U.S. drone, Cyber Command initiated a cyber operation. The Iranian Revolutionary Guard maintains control of the rocket and missile systems and they have been disabled as the U.S. response. Iran has confirmed the cyber-attack but also says it failed. Iran expected a response by the United States and in advance shut down several radar sites.

The United States has been inside several cyber operations in Iran for a very long time and was ready for a go order. Meanwhile, The US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) is warning that Iran has been advancing their own cyber operations against select US targets. It is unclear what those targets are.

President Trump spent the weekend at Camp David while Secretary of State Mike Pompeo traveled to Saudi Arabia and to Abu Dhabi while NSC John Bolton is in Israel. Bolton has on his calendar meetings with the Israeli national security and atomic energy officials as the introduction of the coming peace plan proposal dealing with the Palestinians will be introduced in Bahrain.

Trump has signed yet another addition to the sanctions architecture on Iran. There is talk of sanctions relief if Iran is willing to negotiate on key topics including escalating uranium enrichment. So far, Iran has said they will not meet with the United States and will shoot down other aircraft if they impede Iran airspace. The FAA has ordered all U.S. commercial aircraft to reroute outside of the existing Iran airspace buffer zone.

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06/12/19

Now It Is Human Smuggling vs. Immigration

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Let’s start calling it what it is and it is profitable at epic levels. We cannot overlook that the Syrian refugees were also smuggled in, so there is no longer much separating the United States from Europe in this human crisis and yet Congress is not acting.

Don Bartletti shares some of his most memorable images ...

Senator Lindsey Graham at least introduced a bill to address the asylum issue but is there a Democrat on the House side that has visited the border or introduced anything? Silence…

Arrests at the southwest border increased for the fourth straight month in May as authorities continued to grapple with an unprecedented influx of migrants from Central America. 132,887 people were arrested between ports of entry last month, up from 99,304 migrants in April, according to data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection released Wednesday.

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