13 Russians Indicted, Election Interference

By: Denise Simon – Founders Code

Hoorah for Rosenstein and Mueller!

Rosenstein: “No Allegations That Any American Had Any Knowledge” Of Russian Election Influence Operation

The Department of Justice indictment is here.

Internet Research Agency, St. Petersburg, Russia NBC

The Department of Justice has issued charges against 13 Russian nationals involved with the Internet Research Agency, an organization at the center of fake news and trolling during the 2016 presidential election.

The US Justice Department has filed charges against 13 Russian nationals and three Russian groups for interfering with the 2016 presidential election.

In an indictment released on Friday (.pdf), the Justice Department called out the Internet Research Agency, a notorious group behind the Russian propaganda effort across social media. Employees for the agency created troll accounts and used bots to prop up arguments and sow political chaos during the 2016 presidential campaign.

Facebook, Twitter and Google have struggled to deal with fake news, trolling campaigns and bots on their platforms, facing the scorn of Capitol Hill over their mishandlings.

The indictment lists 13 Russian nationals tied to the effort. Prosecutors said the efforts began as early as 2014 to interfere with US politics, with trolls posing as Americans, creating false personalities and spreading fake news across Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

“These groups and pages, which addressed divisive U.S. political and social issues, falsely claimed to be controlled by US activists when, in fact, they were controlled by defendants,” the indictment said.

More here.


13 Russian Nationals Indicted By Mueller For Interfering In US Elections

By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton

A federal grand jury in the District of Columbia on Friday indicted 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities accused of interfering in US elections. The Russians probably aren’t here in the US, so this is mostly symbolic, but Mueller and others know it is a certainty that the Russians will meddle in the upcoming elections. I’m heartened that someone is at least taking the threat from Russia seriously. I think this also goes a long way to dispelling the Trump collusion nonsense. Although, Trump is by no means out of the woods just yet concerning Mueller. Evidently, the Russians were trying to cause massive chaos as I’ve said before and were even supporting Bernie Sanders, which actually makes sense.

The Russians are accused of having a “strategic goal to sow discord in the US political system, including the 2016 presidential election.” It’s a pity they don’t state that the Russians have been doing this for decades, it was just politically expedient to finally acknowledge it. No Americans were swept up in these indictments which is good news as well. You can read the indictment here.

The Department of Justice has issued charges against 13 Russian nationals involved with the Internet Research Agency, an organization at the center of fake news and trolling during the 2016 presidential election. The Russians stand accused of spreading derogatory information about Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, denigrating Republican candidates Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, and supporting Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders and then-Republican candidate Donald Trump. None of these candidates however colluded with the Russians. It was Russia doing what Russia does… creating havoc to mess with the United States. It’s soft warfare.

The indictment states that the defendants spread derogatory information about various candidates throughout the 2016 campaign and by “early to mid-2016” were supporting Trump’s presidential campaign. And I contend that was only to cause massive conflict. They didn’t really care who got in, the Russians were building files on all the candidates. The Russians did purchase political ads on social media as bots and trolls. They also staged political rallies inside the US while pretending to be grassroots groups. It’s classic subversion and Russian Spycraft 101. The indictment charges, for instance, that Russians paid an American woman in Florida to dress up as Hillary Clinton in a prison uniform and paid another American to build a cage large enough to hold her.

“Some defendants, posing as US persons and without revealing their Russian association, communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign and with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities,” the indictment said. The 37-page charging document also contains allegations that two of the indicted Russians traveled to the US in 2014, visiting Nevada, California, New Mexico, Colorado, Illinois, Michigan, Louisiana, Texas and New York “to gather intelligence” and that the duo had discussed “evacuation scenarios.” These are spies and we should have intel units dealing with threats like this from both Russia and China.

Per Politico, the defendants also allegedly posed as Americans in online interactions with political and social activists, including one instance outlined by Mueller’s team in which they communicated with a “Texas-based grassroots organization” that advised the Russian nationals to direct their efforts toward “purple states like Colorado, Virginia and Florida.” The indictment alleges that the Russian nationals regularly began using the term “purple states” in subsequent planning.

Mueller put in his indictment that the defendants conspired to defraud the US. Three of them conspired to commit wire and bank fraud. Five of the defendants were charged with aggravated identity theft. The three entities charged are Internet Research Agency LLC, Concord Management and Consulting LLC and Concord Catering. The 13 Russians charged are: Yevgeniy Viktorovich Prigozhin; Mikhail Ivanovich Bystrov; Mikhail Leonidovich Burchik; Aleksandra Yuryevna Krylova; Anna Vladislavovna Bogacheva; Sergey Pavlovich Polozov; Maria Anatolyrvna Bovda; Robert Sergetevich Bovda; Dzheykhun Nasimi Ogly; Vadim Vladimirovich Podkopaev; Gleb Igorevich Vasilchenko; Irina Viktorovna Kaverzina and Vladimir Venkov.

I would hope those on the right that had a lovefest going with the Russians will come to their senses after this. They are not our allies and they are not our friends. They are a threat to our nation and our freedoms. They were trying to sow the seeds of discord to help destroy our government and have us at each other’s throats and to a certain extent, they succeeded. We don’t need more useful idiots for communists and we don’t need Alexander Dugin and Vladimir Putin trying to manipulate our country. Vigilance is survival when it comes to communists.


Conservative Group Banned

By: Cliff Kincaid | America’s Survival

A conservative pro-family group has been banned from the Conservative Political Action Conference. Brian Camenker and Cliff Kincaid discuss the infiltration of the conservative movement by the gay rights lobby and big money groups dedicated to the libertarian line. They also discuss President Trump’s confusing policies on the topic and Mitt Romney’s pro-homosexual record.


Skynet Is In Total Control

By: Kent Engelke | Capitol Securities

In my view, Skynet is in complete control of the markets. I believe momentum driven technology based trading is completely dictating market direction, direction that is devoid of any rational thought or fundamental analysis.

Some might challenge this view, but according to a recent SEC study, 50% of trading is the result of algorithmic trading and another 40% is the result of passive ETF/indexing.

I will adamantly argue the underlying fundamentals of the economy have and are changing, changes that are not yet reflected. The changes geopolitically are tectonic. Monetarily, the changes are fundamental with perhaps gargantuan implications in a technical driven market given the largest component of most valuation models are interest rates.

Commenting further about monetary policy, QE has been replaced by QT. Interest rates are heading higher and there is a distinct probability there could be 4 interest rate increases in 2018. Based upon fed funds futures, the markets still have not fully discounted two hikes. This is the inverse of 2008-2017.

The economy is on the verge of inflationary growth, the result of tax and regulatory reform, negative real interest rates and an increase in monetary velocity. There are few absolutes in life, but one of the almost absolutes is negative real interest rates greatly increases the odds of inflationary growth. The longer negative real interest rates exist, the greater probability of demand pull growth that could morph into cost push (wage) inflation.

It is the corollary of an inverted yield curve where an inverted yield curve has a 100% probability of a slowing economy. An inverted yield curve has preceded all recessions, but not every inversion creates a recession.

January’s PPI was similar to the CPI. The 0.4% increase in the core rate (ex food and energy) was double the expectations, partially the result of downward pressure on the dollar. It is all but assured these increases will soon feed into consumer prices. The 2.2% annual rate is at a six-year high.

Treasuries initially sold off on the data, almost breaching 3.0%, but then advanced on “technical driven trading as a large block trade in 10-year note futures was the catalyst to push the 10-year to session high prices,” quoting Bloomberg.

The biggest issue with technical based trading is that such trading does not reflect fundamental changes with the underlying structure. It assumes that yesterday’s environment will last forever. As these changes begin to be reflected, volatility will increase.

This too is not a radical statement. Barons wrote yesterday the volatility will not wane anytime in the near future given the underlying changes that have occurred macro economically and geopolitically.

Just as an aside, one factoid I think is interesting is that active managers have been selling the must owned technology issues, issues that led the recent three-day advance on technical based trading but as noted several times only 10% of the volume is the result of active management.

Last night, the foreign markets were up. London was up 0.71%, Paris was up 1.01% and Frankfurt was up 0.66%. China was closed for a holiday, Japan was up 1.19% and Hang Sang closed for a holiday. The Dow should open flat. The 10-year is up 4/32 to yield 2.89%.