St. Louis Blues win the Stanley Cup

Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares

St. Louis Blue capture first championship in franchise history

The St. Louis Blues made it back in the Stanley Cup Final for the first time in 49 years, and after stunning a Boston Bruins team in Game 7 on the road, the Blues have their first championship in 52 years as a franchise.

Stanley Cup Final schedule

All times ET
*if necessary

Monday, May 27

Game 1: Boston 4, St. Louis 2

Wednesday, May 29

Game 2: St. Louis 3, Boston 2 (OT)

Saturday, June 1

Game 3: Boston 7, St. Louis 2

Monday, June 3

Game 4: St. Louis 4, Boston 2

Thursday, June 6

Game 5: St. Louis 2, Boston 1

Sunday, June 9

Game 6: Boston 5, St. Louis 1

Wednesday, June 12

Game 7: St. Louis 4, Boston 1

Playoff preview

The defending champion Washington Capitals will begin their title defense as the Metropolitan Division champion, facing off against the wild card Carolina Hurricanes in an Eastern Conference first-round matchup. Alex Ovechkin, the NHL’s leading goal scorer with his eighth 50-goal campaign, was a man possessed in last year’s Stanley Cup playoffs, scoring 15 goals in 24 games.

Last year’s playoff darlings, the expansion Vegas Golden Knights, this year are the third seed from the Pacific Division, after advancing to the Stanley Cup Final in 2018, their first season.

Format

Eight teams in each conference make the playoffs, and will battle in best-of-seven series to determine champs from both the East and West. The top three finishers from each divisions qualify for the playoffs, as well as the best two record in each conference outside of that group as wild cards. Higher-seeded teams get home ice advantage regardless of record. All series, including the Stanley Cup Final, are in 2-2-1-1-1 format.

Teams

Eastern Conference

Atlantic Division

  1. Tampa Bay Lightning (128 points)
  2. Boston Bruins (107 points)
  3. Toronto Maple Leafs (100 points)

Metropolitan Division

  1. Washington Capitals (104 points)
  2. New York Islanders (103 points)
  3. Pittsburgh Penguins (100 points)

Wild cards

  1. Carolina Hurricanes (99 points)
  2. Columbus Blue Jackets (98 points)

Western Conference

Pacific Division

  1. Calgary Flames (107 points)
  2. San Jose Sharks (101 points)
  3. Vegas Golden Knights (93 points)

Central Division

  1. Nashville Predators (100 points)
  2. Winnipeg Jets (99 points)
  3. St. Louis Blues (99 points)

Wild cards

  1. Dallas Stars (93 points)
  2. Colorado Avalanche (90 points)

Television and streaming

The Stanley Cup playoffs will be televised in the U.S. across NBC, NBCSN, CNBC, USA, and NHL Network, and CBS, SN and TVA Sports in Canada. Online streaming is available in the U.S. through NBC Sports Live Extra and fuboTV, and in Canada by CBC.

Bracket & schedule


Source: NHL.com

All times ET
*if necessary

First round

The Tampa Bay Lightning won the Presidents Cup with 128 points, tying an NHL record with 62 wins. They owned the top seed in the Eastern Conference but were swept away by the Columbus Blue Jackets in four games.

The Lightning weren’t the only conference top seed to get bounced in the opening round. The Calgary Flames (107 points), with the best record in the West, were eliminated by the Colorado Avalanche in five games in the first round.

In fact, all four division winners lost in the first round, with the Central Division-winning Nashville Predators falling in six games to Dallas , and the Metro champion Washington Captials falling in seven games to Carolina.

The first round gave us three Games 7, helping to make up for two sweeps and a five-game series in the conference quarterfinals.

Wednesday, April 10

Game 1: Columbus 4, Tampa Bay 3
Game 1: NY Islanders 4, Pittsburgh 3 (OT)
Game 1: St. Louis 2, Winnipeg 1
Game 1: Dallas 3, Nashville 2
Game 1: San Jose 5, Vegas 2

Thursday, April 11

Game 1: Toronto 4, Boston 1
Game 1: Washington 4, Carolina 2
Game 1: Calgary 4, Colorado 0

Friday, April 12

Game 2: Columbus 5, Tampa Bay 1
Game 2: NY Islanders 3, Pittsburgh 1
Game 2: St. Louis 4, Winnipeg 3
Game 2: Vegas 5, San Jose 3

Saturday, April 13

Game 2: Washington 4, Carolina 3 (OT)
Game 2: Nashville 2, Dallas 1 (OT)
Game 2: Boston 4, Toronto 1
Game 2: Colorado 3, Calgary 2

Sunday, April 14

Game 3: NY Islanders 4, Pittsburgh 1
Game 3: Columbus 3, Tampa Bay 1
Game 3: Winnipeg 6, St. Louis 3
Game 3: Vegas 6, San Jose 3

Monday, April 15

Game 3: Toronto 3, Boston 2
Game 3: Carolina 5, Washington 0
Game 3: Nashville 3, Dallas 2
Game 3: Colorado 6, Calgary 2

Tuesday, April 16

Game 4: Columbus 7, Tampa Bay 3
Game 4: NY Islanders 3, Pittsburgh 1
Game 4: Winnipeg 2, St. Louis 1
Game 4: Vegas 5, San Jose 0

Wednesday, April 17

Game 4: Boston 6, Toronto 4
Game 4: Dallas 5, Nashville 1
Game 4: Colorado 3, Calgary 2 (OT)

Thursday, April 18

Game 4: Carolina 2, Washington 1
Game 5: St. Louis 3, Winnipeg 2
Game 5: San Jose 5, Vegas 2

Friday, April 19

Game 5: Toronto 2, Boston 1
Game 5: Colorado 5, Calgary 1

Saturday, April 20

Game 5: Dallas 5, Nashville 3
Game 6: St. Louis 3, Winnipeg 2
Game 5: Washington 6, Carolina 0

Sunday, April 21

Game 6: Boston 4, Toronto 2
Game 6: San Jose 2, Vegas 1 (2 OT)

Monday, April 22

Game 6: Carolina 5, Washington 2
Game 6: Dallas 2, Nashville 1 (OT)

Tuesday, April 23

Game 7: Boston 4, Toronto 3
Game 7: San Jose 5, Vegas 4 (OT)

Wednesday, April 24

Game 7: Carolina 4, Washington 3 (2OT)

Second round

Thursday, April 25

Game 1: Boston 3, Columbus 2 (OT)
Game 1: St. Louis 3, Dallas 2

Friday, April 26

Game 1: Carolina 1, NY Islanders 0 (OT)
Game 1: San Jose 5, Colorado 2

Saturday, April 27

Game 2: Dallas 4, St. Louis 2
Game 2: Columbus 3, Boston 2 (2OT)

Sunday, April 28

Game 2: Carolina 2, NY Islanders 1
Game 2: Colorado 4, San Jose 3

Monday, April 29

Game 3: St. Louis 4, Dallas 3

Tuesday, April 30

Game 3: Columbus 2, Boston 1
Game 3: San Jose 4, Colorado 2

Wednesday, May 1

Game 3: Carolina 5, NY Islanders 2
Game 4: Dallas 4, St. Louis 2

Thursday, May 2

Game 4: Boston 4, Columbus 1
Game 4: Colorado 3, San Jose 0

Friday, May 3

Game 4: Carolina 5, NY Islanders 2
Game 5: Dallas 2, St. Louis 1

Saturday, May 4

Game 5: Boston 4, Columbus 3
Game 5: San Jose 2, Colorado 1

Sunday, May 5

Game 6: St. Louis 4, Dallas 1

Monday, May 6

Game 6: Boston 3, Columbus 0
Game 6: Colorado 4, San Jose 3 (OT)

Tuesday, May 7

Game 7: St. Louis 2, Dallas 1 (2OT)

Wednesday, May 8

Game 7: San Jose 3, Colorado 2

Conference finals results

The 2019 NHL playoffs have provided lively and exciting matchups, seeding be damned. All four division winners were bounced in the first round, but despite the early upsets the first two rounds have been compelling, with three Games 7 in the first round and two more in the second round.

The Boston Bruins swept their way through Carolina to earn a spot in the Stanley Cup Final for the first time in six years, and will be seeking their first championship since 2011.

The Carolina Hurricanes missed the Stanley Cup playoffs for nine straight seasons before this year, and all they’ve done is dispatch the defending champion Capitals followed by a second-round sweep of the Islanders before falling against Boston. Also in the conference final are the St. Louis Blues (first time in three years) and the San Jose Sharks, who needed seven games in each of the first two rounds, but advanced to their first conference final since 2016.

Thursday, May 9

Game 1: Boston 5, Carolina 2

Saturday, May 11

Game 1: San Jose 6, St. Louis 3

Sunday, May 12

Game 2: Boston 6, Carolina 2

Monday, May 13

Game 2: St. Louis 4, San Jose 2

Tuesday, May 14

Game 3: Boston 2, Carolina 1

Wednesday, May 15

Game 3: San Jose 5, St. Louis 4 (OT)

Thursday, May 16

Game 4: Boston 4, Carolina 0

Friday, May 17

Game 4: St. Louis 2, San Jose 1

Sunday, May 19

Game 5: St. Louis 5, San Jose 0

Tuesday, May 21

Game 6: St. Louis 5, San Jose 1


Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

Will Corey Johnson’s charm and energy make him the next mayor of New York City?

Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares

Name: Corey Johnson, 37

Who He Is: Speaker of the New York City Council, potential mayoral candidate

How He’s Contributed: Johnson takes politics seriously but has fun doing it. An activist since high school when he came out as a football player, he has overcome addiction to become a popular and powerful political force in the Big Apple, well positioned to become city’s next mayor.

Why We’re Proud: For twenty years, Johnson has been something of a one-man pride parade. He grew up in a blue-collar household in Massachusetts that was less than idyllic. His father left when he was a baby, and his mother’s second husband struggled with alcohol. “We always had problems with money,” Johnson later recalled.

Johnson found an outlet in football, becoming the captain of his high school football team. To the surprise of the team, which ultimately supported his decision, Johnson came out as gay.

His decision to come out was a brave one, and catnip for the mainstream media enchanted by the idea of a gay high school football captain. As a result, Johnson first taste of media attention came in 2000 when he was 18, with a story in The New York Times and a segment on 20/20.

Johnson found himself the center of attention, and after just a month at George Washington University in D.C., he moved to New York City. He became immersed in politics and started working for local politicians.

In sharp contrast to his rising political star, his personal life was full of turmoil. He was diagnosed as HIV positive in 2004, at the age of 22. “In the moment and for the days and months and even years following my doctor giving me that news I lived with shame and fear and anxiety,” he later said.

Not long after seroconverting, Johnson lost his job and health insurance. “My drinking and drug use took off after this,” he said. “After waking up one day in 2009 with a hangover, as he often did, Johnson confided to a friend that he had a problem. Johnson has now sober for nine years.

Johnson came through the dark period of his life with his charm and energy undiminished. The New York Times has described him as “possessed with a preternatural talent for getting to know everyone and the energy to call and call again, making him something of a ubiquitous presence for nearly everyone in the upper echelons of New York’s public life in recent years.”

In 2005 Johnson joined the district Community Board that includes the heavily gay Chelsea neighborhood, a perfect way to establish a political case. When out lesbian Christine Quinn decided in 2013 to vacate her City Council seat to run for mayor, Johnson threw his hat in the ring. He wasn’t considered the frontrunner, but as one political observer noted, “he just outworked everybody” and won.

On the Council, Johnson distinguished himself as an advocate for equality. He authored a bill that eliminated the need for transgender people to have surgery before they could change their birth certificates. Earlier this month, he demanded that the New York Police Department apologize for its behavior during the Stonewall Riots; the police commissioner made the apology the following day.

But Johnson also distinguished himself by his ambition. Early in his first term, he was already lobbying to become the Council President. Late in 2017, Johnson achieved his goal, becoming the first gay man to hold the position.

Along the way, Johnson earned a reputation as a happy political warrior. He knows how to ingratiate himself with voters (and the media) by having fun. For example, in 2018, he turned a cameo in a weather report on a local TV station into a chance to dance to Lady Gaga’s “The Cure.” The gig was so successful it became a regular feature on Tuesdays.

Johnson has also learned how to work the legislative machinery to appeal to New Yorkers disdain for hysterical homeboy Donald Trump. In 2017, he proposed a bill that would have required Trump to disclose his taxes. (The bill didn’t go anywhere, but the state legislature passed similar legislation this year.)

Between his charm and his drive, Johnson has become the most popular politician in New York City–far more so than Mayor Bill de Blasio. De Blasio is running for president, but a poll of city residents found that he is their last choice among the candidates.

That leaves Johnson well positioned to run for mayor in 2021. He’s already broadly hinted that he’s planning on doing so. Meantime, expect Johnson to keep having fun. All you have to do is look at his dance performance at the Pride Parade in Brooklyn on Sunday.

That is clearly a man who takes pride in his work–and in Pride.


Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

mikenov on Twitter: In their latest filing to block a congressional subpoena, Trump’s lawyers argue Congress can only investigate the president with its impeachment power. huffpost.com/entry/donald-t… via @HuffPostPol

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

In their latest filing to block a congressional subpoena, Trump’s lawyers argue Congress can only investigate the president with its impeachment power. huffpost.com/entry/donald-t… via @HuffPostPol


Posted by

mikenov
on Thursday, June 13th, 2019 12:43am

mikenov on Twitter


Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

Trump’s Lawyers Are Practically Daring Congress To Impeach Him

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  


Michael_Novakhov
shared this story
.

Donald Trump’s lawyers are all but daring Congress to launch an impeachment inquiry into the president’s alleged crimes.

On May 20, U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta knocked down the dubious argument made by Trump’s lawyers that Congress has no “legitimate legislative purpose” to obtain the president’s financial records, which have been subpoenaed by the Oversight and Reform Committee. Mehta ruled that Congress has broad investigatory powers that should not solely be limited to impeachment.

“It is simply not fathomable that a Constitution that grants Congress the power to remove a President for reasons including criminal behavior would deny Congress the power to investigate him for unlawful conduct — past or present — even without formally opening an impeachment inquiry,” Mehta wrote.

In their brief filed Monday with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit challenging a congressional subpoena for financial records held by Trump’s accounting firm, the president’s lawyers argued that the court should not consider the inherent “non-legislative powers” of Congress ― impeachment ― if it is not actively going down that path. The brief goes on to cite Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) repeated denials that the House is engaged in impeachment proceedings for the president.

Trump’s lawyers also argued that Mehta had no right to invoke the impeachment power in ruling for Congress, when the Oversight and Reform Committee did not mention impeachment in its brief before Mehta or in its subpoena for the documents. In doing so, the president’s lawyers are directly arguing that Congress would have more authority if they were to subpoena for documents as part of an impeachment inquiry. “[T]he Constitution also grants Congress non-legislative powers,” the brief states, adding, “And the House and Senate can, respectively, impeach and try impeachments.”



ASSOCIATED PRESS

“If you open an impeachment inquiry, do you get more information?” Pelosi said during a CNN interview on Tuesday. “You still end up in the court.”

Absent impeachment, Congress’ subpoena of the president’s financial records from his accounting firm Mazars USA LLP should be held invalid as the Oversight and Reform Committee has no legitimate legislative reason to obtain them, Trump’s lawyers continue to argue, as they did before losing in district court.

The committee has provided numerous legislative reasons to subpoena Trump’s financial records in its legal briefs. Specifically, the committee says it is pursuing the records to determine if the president lied on his mandatory annual financial disclosure reports and whether any legislation is necessary to fix any loopholes or provide more transparency on presidential finances. The committee passed the For The People Act in 2019 to expand disclosure requirements and provide statutory support for the Foreign Emoluments Clause in the Constitution.

Trump’s lawyers, however, argue that these legislative purposes should be discarded because, according to them, they are unconstitutional. In fact, the president’s lawyers say the already existing presidential financial disclosure laws are unconstitutional.

The president lost using these arguments before Mehta and also in a separate district court case regarding a subpoena for the president’s bank records.

“[T]here can be little doubt that Congress’s interest in the accuracy of the President’s financial disclosures falls within the legislative sphere,” Mehta wrote.

These cases appear headed to the Supreme Court and Trump’s appeal brief contains a Trumpian appeal to the personal interest of the justices there.

It argues that justices should be concerned about Congress subpoenaing their personal financial records if they allow the subpoena for Trump’s financial information to stand. That’s because the justices are already covered by congressionally enacted financial disclosure laws. Additionally, the House-passed For The People Act contains provisions extending judicial ethics codes to the Supreme Court.

“[R]eplace ‘President’ with ‘Justices’ and [Mehta’s ruling] would, without question, authorize a congressional subpoena for the Justices’ accounting records— even for many years before they joined the Court,” Trump’s lawyers argue.

Trump wants to make sure that when the Supreme Court considers his personal financial records, they think of their own, too.


Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

mikenov on Twitter: House Oversight committee votes to hold William Barr and Wilbur Ross in contempt | wusa9.com wusa9.com/video/news/loc…

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

House Oversight committee votes to hold William Barr and Wilbur Ross in contempt | wusa9.com wusa9.com/video/news/loc…


Posted by

mikenov
on Thursday, June 13th, 2019 12:28am

mikenov on Twitter


Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

House Oversight committee votes to hold William Barr and Wilbur Ross in contempt | wusa9.com

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  


Michael_Novakhov
shared this story
.

House Oversight committee votes to hold William Barr and Wilbur Ross in contempt

House Oversight committee votes to hold William Barr and Wilbur Ross in contempt
Next Up
Baltimore Democrat promises Trump subpoenas
02:19
Quality
Closed Captions
Share
Copied

00:51

Rewind 10 Seconds
Next Up: Baltimore Democrat promises Trump subpoenas

01:48
00:17
02:06
Closed Captions
Share
Settings
Fullscreen
 
They’re being held in contempt for not complying with subpoenas for documents related to Trump’s decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census.
Published:

6:54 PM EDT June 12, 2019
Updated:

6:53 PM EDT June 12, 2019

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

Adam Schiff threatens to subpoena FBI Director Christopher Wray

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  


Michael_Novakhov
shared this story
.

Police use rubber bullets, tear gas and pepper spray in effort to disperse protest against China extradition bill

Signed in as Michael_Novakhov

Share this story on NewsBlur

Shared stories are on their way…


Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

Schiff threatens to subpoena FBI director

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  


Michael_Novakhov
shared this story
.

(CNN) – House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff on Wednesday threatened to subpoena FBI Director Christopher Wray in order to learn whether there are active counterintelligence investigations related to President Donald Trump and Russia or if the bureau’s counterintelligence investigation on that topic has concluded.

Following the conclusion of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation in March, Schiff has said he wanted to know whether that meant the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into members of Trump’s team, which was opened in June 2016, had ended, or f it has instead “mushroomed into a set of other counterintelligence investigations.”

On Wednesday, Schiff had yet to get an answer from the FBI and was prepared to soon issue a subpoena if necessary.

“We are determined to get answers, and we are running out of patience. If necessary, we’ll subpoena the director and require him to come in and provide those answers under oath,” the California Democrat said.

Schiff’s comments came after his committee held a hearing on the counterintelligence portion of the Mueller report, which did not establish a criminal conspiracy with the Russian government but did document numerous contacts between Russians and members of Trump’s team. The hearing is the first of several that Schiff is planning in order to highlight the substance of the first volume of the Mueller report, while the Judiciary Committee is doing the same for the second volume on obstruction of justice.

At the hearing, Schiff expressed frustration that the Gang of Eight — the congressional leaders who are briefed about sensitive intelligence matters — had still not been briefed on the “constellation of counterintelligence investigations” around Russia and the Trump campaign since former FBI Director James Comey was fired in 2017.

“Once James Comey was fired, we no longer continued to get Gang of Eight briefings on this constellation of counterintelligence investigations, and we not have not had one since, which is a real problem,” Schiff said. “To this date we have requested from the FBI and from the director a briefing on the status of the counterintelligence investigations. We do not know to this date whether they are ongoing. We do not know whether any of them have been closed. We do not know what those findings are but we are determined to find out.”

Schiff’s comments came at a hearing in which Democrats invited two former FBI officials to testify on the significance of the counterintelligence findings in the Mueller report, while Republican-invited witness Andrew McCarthy, a former US attorney and Fox News contributor, expressed his skepticism toward the special counsel investigation.

The sharp partisan split was on full display.

“Most Americans consider the solicitation of foreign help during a presidential campaign, the offer of foreign assistance, and the campaign’s eagerness to accept that offer, quote, if it is what you say it is, I love it, to constitute plain evidence of collusion,” Schiff said.

But California Rep. Devin Nunes, the top Republican on the Intelligence panel, accused Democrats of perpetuating a “grotesque spectacle” and called the Mueller report a “shoddy political hit piece.”

There were occasional cases in which witnesses were less rigid in their viewpoints. Former FBI official Robert Anderson — who worked with Peter Strzok, the FBI agent removed from Mueller’s team for sending anti-Trump text messages — called Strzok’s messages “unbelievably inappropriate” and said that it was correct he was removed. And McCarthy, who criticized the origins of the FBI’s counterintelligence probe, highlighted the danger of Trump campaign officials taking the Trump Tower meeting with a Russian lawyer offering dirt on Hillary Clinton.

“I think by taking the meeting, and I don’t think you need a lot of training for this, by taking the meeting, you’ve made yourself beholden to Putin in terms of however he wants to characterize it down the road, so that even if nothing inappropriate happens at the meeting, you have that vulnerability as well,” McCarthy said.

Still, the witnesses also expressed views at the hearing that went beyond the facts contained in the Mueller report, underscoring the partisan nature of the committee’s Russia-related proceedings over the past few years.

McCarthy, for instance, rejected parts of the US intelligence community’s assessment on Russian meddling in 2016. He said Russian President Vladimir Putin shouldn’t be portrayed “as on one side or the other side,” even though US intelligence agencies concluded that he specifically tried to help Trump get elected.

Stephanie Douglas, a former official in the FBI’s national security division, speculated beyond the findings in Mueller’s report. She repeatedly suggested that the Russians “tasked” former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort with transferring internal polling data to a Russian associate. The Mueller report confirmed that these data transfers occurred throughout 2016, but Mueller never said the Russian government requested or received the polls.

The-CNN-Wire ™ & © 2019 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.


Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

What Orwell’s ‘1984’ Tells Us About Today’s World, 70 Years After It Was Published

Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares

The dominant reading of George Orwell’s dystopian novel, “1984” has been that it was a dire prediction of what could be. Denis Hamel CôtéCC BY-SA

Stephen Groening, University of Washington

Seventy years ago, Eric Blair, writing under a pseudonym George Orwell, published “1984,” now generally considered a classic of dystopian fiction.

The novel tells the story of Winston Smith, a hapless middle-aged bureaucrat who lives in Oceania, where he is governed by constant surveillance. Even though there are no laws, there is a police force, the “Thought Police,” and the constant reminders, on posters, that “Big Brother Is Watching You.”

Smith works at the Ministry of Truth, and his job is to rewrite the reports in newspapers of the past to conform with the present reality. Smith lives in a constant state of uncertainty; he is not sure the year is in fact 1984.

Although the official account is that Oceania has always been at war with Eurasia, Smith is quite sure he remembers that just a few years ago they had been at war with Eastasia, who has now been proclaimed their constant and loyal ally. The society portrayed in “1984” is one in which social control is exercised through disinformation and surveillance.

As a scholar of television and screen culture, I argue that the techniques and technologies described in the novel are very much present in today’s world.

‘1984’ as history

One of the key technologies of surveillance in the novel is the “telescreen,” a device very much like our own television.

The telescreen displays a single channel of news, propaganda and wellness programming. It differs from our own television in two crucial respects: It is impossible to turn off and the screen also watches its viewers.

The telescreen is television and surveillance camera in one. In the novel, the character Smith is never sure if he is being actively monitored through the telescreen.

A publicity photo on the set of the CBS anthology television series ‘Studio One’ depicts a presentation of George Orwell’s ‘1984.’
CBS Television

Orwell’s telescreen was based in the technologies of television pioneered prior to World War II and could hardly be seen as science fiction. In the 1930s Germany had a working videophone system in place, and television programs were already being broadcast in parts of the United States, Great Britain and France.

Past, present and future

The dominant reading of “1984” has been that it was a dire prediction of what could be. In the words of Italian essayist Umberto Eco, “at least three-quarters of what Orwell narrates is not negative utopia, but history.”

Additionally, scholars have also remarked how clearly “1984” describes the present.

In 1949, when the novel was written, Americans watched on average four and a half hours of television a day; in 2009, almost twice that. In 2017, television watching was slightly down, to eight hours, more time than we spent asleep.

In the U.S. the information transmitted over television screens came to constitute a dominant portion of people’s social and psychological lives.

‘1984’ as present day

In the year 1984, however, there was much self-congratulatory coverage in the U.S. that the dystopia of the novel had not been realized. But media studies scholar Mark Miller argued how the famous slogan from the book, “Big Brother Is Watching You” had been turned to “Big Brother is you, watching” television.

Miller argued that television in the United States teaches a different kind of conformity than that portrayed in the novel. In the novel, the telescreen is used to produce conformity to the Party. In Miller’s argument, television produces conformity to a system of rapacious consumption – through advertising as well as a focus on the rich and famous. It also promotes endless productivity, through messages regarding the meaning of success and the virtues of hard work.

Many viewers conform by measuring themselves against what they see on television, such as dress, relationships and conduct. In Miller’s words, television has “set the standard of habitual self-scrutiny.”

The kind of paranoid worry possessed by Smith in the novel – that any false move or false thought will bring the thought police – instead manifests in television viewers that Miller describes as an “inert watchfulness.” In other words, viewers watch themselves to make sure they conform to those others they see on the screen.

This inert watchfulness can exist because television allows viewers to watch strangers without being seen. Scholar Joshua Meyrowitz has shown that the kinds of programming which dominate U.S television – news, sitcoms, dramas – have normalized looking into the private lives of others.

Controlling behavior

Alongside the steady rise of “reality TV,” beginning in the ‘60s with “Candid Camera,” “An American Family,” “Real People,” “Cops” and “The Real World,” television has also contributed to the acceptance of a kind of video surveillance.

For example, it might seem just clever marketing that one of the longest-running and most popular reality television shows in the world is entitled “Big Brother.” The show’s nod to the novel invokes the kind of benevolent surveillance that “Big Brother” was meant to signify: “We are watching you and we will take care of you.”

But Big Brother, as a reality show, is also an experiment in controlling and modifying behavior. By asking participants to put their private lives on display, shows such as “Big Brother” encourage self-scrutiny and behaving according to perceived social norms or roles that challenge those perceived norms.

The stress of performing 24/7 on “Big Brother” has led the show to employ a team of psychologists.

Television scholar Anna McCarthy and others have shown that the origins of reality television can be traced back to social psychology and behavioral experiments in the aftermath of World War II, which were designed to better control people.

Yale University psychologist Stanley Milgram, for example, was influenced by “Candid Camera.”

In the “Candid Camera” show, cameras were concealed in places where they could film people in unusual situations. Milgram was fascinated with “Candid Camera,” and he used a similar model for his experiments – his participants were not aware that they were being watched or that it was part of an experiment.

Like many others in the aftermath of World War II, Milgram was interested in what could compel large numbers of people to “follow orders” and participate in genocidal acts. His “obedience experiments” found that a high proportion of participants obeyed instructions from an established authority figure to harm another person, even if reluctantly.

While contemporary reality TV shows do not order participants to directly harm each other, they are often set up as a small-scale social experiment that often involves intense competition or even cruelty.

Surveillance in daily life

And, just like in the novel, ubiquitous video surveillance is already here.

Closed-circuit television exist in virtually every area of American life, from transportation hubs and networks, to schools, supermarkets, hospitals and public sidewalks, not to mention law enforcement officers and their vehicles.

Surveillance footage from these cameras is repurposed as the raw material of television, mostly in the news but also in shows like “America’s Most Wanted,” “Right This Minute” and others. Many viewers unquestioningly accept this practice as legitimate.

The friendly face of surveillance

Reality television is the friendly face of surveillance. It helps viewers think that surveillance happens only to those who choose it or to those who are criminals. In fact, it is part of a culture of widespread television use, which has brought about what Norwegian criminologist Thomas Mathiesen called the “viewer society” – in which the many watch the few.

For Mathiesen, the viewer society is merely the other side of the surveillance society – described so aptly in Orwell’s novel – where a few watch the many.

Stephen Groening, Assistant Professor of Cinema and Media Studies, University of Washington

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

The post What Orwell’s ‘1984’ Tells Us About Today’s World, 70 Years After It Was Published appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.


Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

EXCLUSIVE: Check out the trailer for the gay wrestling doc ‘Cassandro the Exotico’

Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares

Wrestling is about as homoerotic as sports get.

So why has it taken so long to have a few out-queer wrestlers? Meet Saul Armendariz, better known by his stage name Cassandro, Mexico’s out-gay wrestling superstar. As a competitor in the Luca Libra wrestling circuit, Cassandro has earned the nickname the “Liberace of Luca Libre” courtesy of his outrageous, drag-inspired costumes.

Related: Meet Cassandro, Mexico’s Lucha Libre Drag Queen Superstar

Now Cassandro opens up about his life in the new documentary Cassandro the Exotico from director Marie Losier. The film details Cassandro’s rise as an out-gay sports superstar, and his final year in wrestling before retirement.

Cassandro the Exotico opens in New York July 19 before beginning a national rollout.


Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

Kevin Durant should have never played in Game 5

Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares

Durant rushed back from a calf injury, only to rupture his Achilles before entering free agency. He should never have been put at risk.

It seemed like it was meant to be.

Kevin Durant was thrashing the Raptors. He had returned just in the nick of time, with his team down 3-1 amid the worst NBA Finals performance of their dynastic five-year run. He was Golden State’s warrior in shining armor, the most efficient NBA Finals scorer ever, here to save the day.

Fourteen game minutes later, the story turned into a disaster. Durant’s calf injury worsened to an Achilles injury, a diagnosis with serious implications for the rest of his career. An MRI confirmed the worst-case scenario: Durant ruptured his Achilles, just before entering an offseason as the most coveted free agent in a star-stacked market.

Head coach Steve Kerr told reporters the decision to play was made by Durant, his agent Rich Kleinman, the Warriors’ medical staff and a second opinion medical. It’s clear now that decision was made far too soon, though Kerr said he’d do it again in a heartbeat:

“Would we go back and do it over again? Damn right,” Kerr said, according to The Washington Post’s Ben Golliver. “Our feeling was the worst thing he could do was reinjure the calf. The Achilles came as a complete shock.”

Those who argued Durant had everything to gain and nothing to lose by returning from injury early got it completely wrong. Kevin Durant paid the ultimate sacrifice. The injury could cost him all of next season, and years off the tail end of his prime.

Durant has a saving grace: he can delay his free agency by exercising the player option on the second year of his contract. The option is scheduled to pay him $31.5 million, only $1.2 million short of what he’d earn in Year 1 on a new max contract anywhere else. Another saving grace: his transcendent talent, which reportedly will draw max contract interest from multiple teams, regardless of his injury.

But players who aren’t Tier 1 superstars don’t have this luxury. Even some who are stars in their prime can feel the league’s wrath. Just ask Isaiah Thomas, who was poised for a max contract in Boston before he sacrificed his body for a Celtics team that traded him for Kyrie Irving two months later. Thomas has never been the same, and was forced to settle for a minimum contract this season.

Or, maybe ask DeMarcus Cousins, an All-Star who was met with zero big-money offers in free agency after he tore his Achilles on the Pelicans last season. Cousins was stuck signing for the mid-level exception of $5.3 million with Golden State. He worked diligently to return, but then suffered a quad injury in the first round and hasn’t been the same since. It is unclear what Cousins’ market will be now, and the Warriors’ can only offer him a minimal raise.

Maybe Kevon Looney, who is also a free agent, should take note. Looney, currently operating on a veteran’s minimum contract, played through a fractured collarbone, only to re-aggravate his injury in Game 5. He will enter free agency this summer, his first chance at a big payday. He’s expected to play again in Game 6, but for what reason? At what long-term cost?

Those questions apply double to Durant. Did he really have enough reason to play?

It couldn’t have been about proving he was the difference on a championship team, to combat the ridiculous notion the Warriors were somehow better without their two-time Finals MVP. Could it?

“All those talking heads who say we’re better without him. That shit is ludicrous,” Klay Thompson said postgame. “That’s crazy. This is the best player in the world. You could put him on the 30th best team, and that team would make the playoffs. … So we don’t pay that any attention, because that’s just stupid.

“He’s a warrior. You saw what he did tonight. He sacrificed his health for us.”

Could it have been for “legacy” purposes? Is that even a real thing superstars think about?

“When you’re on this level of greatness and everybody’s kinda poking and prodding, trying to narrate your story and tell you who you are or who you should be, what decisions you should make, constantly over and over again,” Stephen Curry explained. “It’s part of what comes with this territory. … At the end of the day, the people that know him know what type of guy he is.”

Maybe Durant felt pressured to come back in part because, according to The Athletic’s Sam Amick, his monthlong absence caused “a mixture of confusion and angst among several of his teammates.” Durant began doing two-a-day workouts to return for the NBA Finals, according to The Undefeated’s Marc Spears. Amick reported there was “a very real hope” Durant would push through injury like several of his teammates did and return for Game 4, even though he and the Warriors medical staff pegged Game 5 as the earliest return date. He sat out instead, and Golden State lost to fall behind 3-1 in the series.

Amick, who cited sources in his piece, wrote:

When [Durant’s Game 4 return] didn’t happen, and when [the Warriors] saw their season compromised more than ever without him after they’d grown hopeful of his return after seeing him on the court, the irritation grew in large part because they simply didn’t understand why he wasn’t there.

Warriors officials aren’t running from the reality that there’s frustration among some players, but they’re also quick to point out that trainer Rick Celebrini – not Durant – is making this call. And until Celebrini gives Durant the go-ahead, his long and painful stretch of absences will extend into this pivotal Warriors summer where his free agency future remains unclear.

A day later, with his team on the brink of elimination in the NBA Finals, Durant was cleared and decided to suit up. He played 12 minutes, then suffered a significantly worse injury early in the second quarter.

Again, at what cost? For what reason?

There’s also how we got here in the first place. In the four games before suffering the initial calf injury, Durant played in 43, 44, 50 and 43 minutes against Houston series. His 50-minute game went to one overtime (53 total minutes), which left just three minutes of game time for Durant to rest. This after playing 41 and 42 minutes in the final two games of the first-round series against the Clippers. In Game 5 of the Houston series, when Durant exited early with his calf injury, he played in 32 of a possible 34 minutes.

Why is this important? Because in his first game in more than a month, Durant played in 12 of Game 5’s first 14 minutes. In an era dedicated to player health, this was colossal mismanagement.

A teary-eyed Myers offered the following explanation:

“Prior to coming back, he went through four weeks with our medical team. It was thorough and it was experts with multiple MRIs and multiple doctors,” he said. “And we felt good about the process. He was cleared to play tonight. That was a collaborative decision.”

Myers was later asked if Durant’s initial calf injury from May 8 could have evolved into Game 5’s Achilles injury.

“The initial injury was a calf injury. This is not a calf injury,” Myers said. “I’m not a doctor. I don’t know how those are related or not, but it’s a different injury.”

The injuries occurred on the same leg, only about a month apart, and WebMD defines the Achilles tendon as “a tough band of fibrous tissue that connects the calf muscles to the heel bone.”

This is something Durant will think about, hopefully as fuel for a potentially year-long rehab and recovery process. An Achilles tear is the most devastating injury a basketball player can suffer. An SB Nation study into how NBA players have historically fared after Achilles injuries revealed the following:

Achilles injuries affect players over 30 the worst, often shortening their careers to just another season or two. Durant will turn 31 just before the start of next season.

Achilles injuries aren’t career shortening for players under 30, at least not immediately

However, players who suffer Achilles injuries rarely reach their pre-injury peak, and certainly not for an extended amount of time.

Recent trends point to Achilles rehabilitation taking closer to six to eight months, rather than nine to 12 months. That’d put Durant back sometime in the middle of next season if there is a complete rupture. But chances are, he’ll play this conservatively.

Players around the league should keep Durant’s predicament in mind should they ever find themselves in a similar position. Is it worth it to sacrifice long-term health for a playoff run?

History says no, but what will everyone else tell you?


Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

6 iced coffee tips for newfound iced coffee lover Nick Van Exel

Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares

Here’s how you can up your game.

Grizzlies assistant coach Nick Van Exel has had a very special week after discovering his new drink for the summer.

Part of me is absolutely stunned it took 47 years for the former Lakers star to try iced coffee, but I’m not going to drink shame the guy. I’m just glad he found his bliss and is enjoying the sheer perfection of iced coffee.

I drink iced coffee every single morning. It’s part of my ritual. Most of the time I have a carafe of cold brew in the fridge, but there are also times you need to treat yourself and venture out of house — even as someone who writes blogs for a living. I’ve really taken to the entire nitro cold brew concept, but that’s really advanced level iced coffee drinking. Today I’m just going to give Nick some helpful tips I’ve learned around my iced coffee journey to help him lift his game.

No. 1: Make some coffee ice cubes.

I know how horrendously boujie this sounds, but don’t knock it ‘til you try it. Get a regular ice cube tray and pour some coffee in it. This makes sure the next morning you can take your time to savor your iced coffee, instead of gulping it down before it gets all watery and gross.

No. 2: Invest in a milk frother.

I started doing this after getting into nitro cold brew, and it’s a neat way to treat yourself. I just have a cheap little one at the house, but it’s really a tremendous boon to my coffee game. Pro tip: Use skim milk for your froth. I’m not a scientist, but it seems to keep it’s airiness much longer.

No. 3: Think about your sweeteners.

When I drink coffee hot I like it black and night and nothing added, but iced coffee is another deal. I like just a little bit of sweetness, and have found that adding it to the milk pre-frothing results in a better glass than dumping it in with the coffee itself. I like flavored Stevia liquid, because it’ll blend in nicely. If you want to go the sugar route then feel free to make a simple syrup, or get some pump-action coffee sweeteners.

No. 4: Don’t let anyone shame you for drinking iced coffee.

At this point I drink it year round. If there’s snow on the ground I’m still ordering iced coffee. Why? Because I know how to keep myself warm like an adult using layers and don’t need a beverage to do that work for me. Okay, mom?!

No. 5: If you make your own cold brew you have to be sure your coffee is coarsely ground.

I’ve tried with espresso and it’s too fine. The whole thing becomes a massive mess.

No. 6: Try this drink, for real.

Iced coffee and coconut LaCroix was the 2017 drink of the summer. It was the 2018 drink of the summer and it’s also the 2019 drink of the summer. You won’t regret drinking this Nick, I promise.


Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

Trump Threatens Merkel With Pipeline Sanctions, U.S. Troop Cut

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  


Michael_Novakhov
shared this story
.

Donald Trump upped his criticism of Germany on Wednesday as he threatened sanctions over Angela Merkel’s continued support for a gas pipeline from Russia and warned that he could shift troops away from the NATO ally over its defense spending.

Echoing previous threats about German support for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, Trump said he’s looking at sanctions to block the project he’s warned would leave Berlin “captive” to Moscow. The U.S. also hopes to export its own liquefied natural gas to Germany.

“We’re protecting Germany from Russia, and Russia is getting billions and billions of dollars in money from Germany” for its gas, Trump told reporters at the White House during a meeting with Polish President Andrzej Duda.

The comments were the latest sign of how U.S.-German ties have eroded in recent years. The U.S. president has repeatedly rebuked Merkel’s government over the pipeline project, trade policies and defense spending. Germany, in turn, has criticized Trump’s moves to abandon international agreements, including on climate change and Iran.

Though he didn’t say which companies or governments could potentially face sanctions, Trump’s comments about the pipeline generated a swift response from Moscow, which said the American president was engaging in “nothing other than blackmail and a form of unfair competition,” according to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.

Merkel and Trump met most recently last week during anniversary celebrations of the 1944 D-Day invasion. That gathering came days after the EU’s longest-serving leader took Trump to task at a commencement address at Harvard University, urging students to “tear down walls” and not to treat “lies as truth.” Without naming the U.S. leader, Merkel left little doubt as to whom she might mean to a crowd who cheered her on.

QuickTake: Why World Worries About Russia’s Natural Gas Pipeline

U.S. opposition to the gas pipeline is bipartisan, out of concern that Russia could use its supplies of natural gas to exert pressure on Western European nations dependent on the fuel. U.S. lawmakers also fear that with an added northern pipeline for its gas, Russia could more easily cut off fuel to Ukraine, which is now a key transit country to Europe.

“Germany is making a tremendous mistake” by relying on the pipeline from Russia, Trump said during a joint news conference with Duda.

Regardless of the political controversy, the Nord Stream 2 project has faced delays and may not be ready to transport gas until the second half of 2020, according to a report made public by Denmark’s Energy Agency.

Nord Stream 2 organizers argue a new pipeline is needed to guarantee supplies will continue to flow in the coming decades as EU domestic reserves shrink and import needs rise. Opponents of the project say it hurts the bloc’s cohesion and weakens its Energy Union strategy aimed at integrating the region’s gas and power markets, diversifying energy supplies and improving security.

Uniper SE, Engie SA, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, OMV AG and BASF SE’s Wintershall are European partners of Russia’s Gazprom PJSC in financing the project to expand Nord Stream by 55 billion cubic meters a year. Russia supplies a third of Europe’s gas and has no plans to give up its share to the expanding list of competitors from Norway to the U.S.

Trump, speaking during the news conference Wednesday, said that Poland signed a contract to purchase an additional $8 billion of liquefied natural gas from U.S. companies, on top of $25 billion already under contract.

Trump said he’ll meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Group of 20 summit in Japan at the end of the month, though its not clear the pipeline project will be on their agenda.

U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry said during a visit to Ukraine in May that he expected Congress to prepare legislation to sanction companies involved in the pipeline’s construction.

Senators Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican, and Jeanne Shaheen, a New Hampshire Democrat, have drafted a bill that would target U.S. sanctions at vessels laying the pipeline and deny U.S. visas to executives from companies linked to the ships. The legislation would also block transactions in U.S.-based property or interests belonging to those individuals and would penalize entities that provide insurance to the project.

In the latest sign of Trump’s frustration over German defense spending, the president said he’s discussed sending as many as 2,000 more U.S. troops to Poland — and might take them from Germany since he believes Berlin isn’t spending enough on defense as a partner in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. There are more than 30,000 U.S. troops in Germany.

Under an agreement reached during the Obama administration, NATO members committed to spending 2% of GDP on defense by the mid-2020s, a level only seven nations were estimated to have reached in 2018.

“Germany’s at 1%, they should be at 2%,” Trump said. According to NATO documents, spent about 1.2 percent of GDP on defense in 2018.

The U.S. already has a few thousand troops in Poland as part of its role in NATO. Trump’s move, if carried out, would add to that, but it wasn’t clear if the forces would be permanently based there or just rotated through.

— With assistance by Daryna Krasnolutska, Nick Wadhams, Daniel Flatley, Stepan Kravchenko, Ewa Krukowska, and Vanessa Dezem


Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

mikenov on Twitter: Though Mueller concluded he couldn’t establish a conspiracy… his report was largely silent on the counterintelligence efforts. Michael Novakhov – SharedNewsLinks℠: Adam Schiff threatens to subpoena FBI director Chris Wray politico.com/story/2019/06/…

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

Though Mueller concluded he couldn’t establish a conspiracy… his report was largely silent on the counterintelligence efforts.
Michael Novakhov – SharedNewsLinks℠: Adam Schiff threatens to subpoena FBI director Chris Wray
politico.com/story/2019/06/…


Posted by

mikenov
on Wednesday, June 12th, 2019 7:43pm

mikenov on Twitter


Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

Stephanie J. Block, Census Materials, Greg Pence, Pete Buttigieg, Tennessee, Pride Books, David Hockney: HOT LINKS

Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares

QUINNIPIAC. Top Dems lead Trump in head-to-head matchups: “The head-to-head matchups give this heads up to President Donald Trump’s team: Former Vice President Joseph Biden and other Democratic contenders would beat the president if the election were held today. Leads range from Biden’s 13 percentage points to thin five-point leads by Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Sen. Cory Booker.”

RADIOACTIVE. Influencers asked to stop taking photos at Chernobyl.

EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE. Trump asserts EP over census materials: ‘House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings has accused both the DOJ and Commerce Department of stonewalling his investigation by withholding documents and preventing witnesses requested by the committee from testifying on the issue. But in a letter on Tuesday, Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd said that the committeehas refused to engage with the department over a “limited subset” of the requested documents that might be privileged information.’

Stephanie J. Block / photo: Joan Marcus.

OVATION. Cher shares video of The Cher Show‘s Stephanie J. Block after her Tony Awards win.

GREG PENCE. Brother of VP spent $7,600 in campaign funds on lodging at Trump Hotel: ‘After USA TODAY asked about the expenses included on his Federal Election Commission disclosure reports, Pence’s spokesman, Kyle Robertson, declined to say whether the Indiana Republican stayed at the hotel before getting an apartment in Washington. Hours after USA TODAY pressed for more detail on the nature of the lodging expenses, the campaign filed an amended FEC report that changed the designation of the expenses to “fundraising event costs.”‘

RIP. James Bryson: “James H. Bryson, 84, a businessman who became an advocate for gay rights and a philanthropist who helped LGBTQ youth in the Philadelphia area, died Monday, June 10, of Alzheimer’s disease at Artis Senior Living of Huntingdon Valley.”

BUTTIGIEG. I’ll cut off some aid if Israel annexes West Bank: “If Prime Minister Netanyahu makes good on his threat to annex Israeli settlements in the West Bank, a President Buttigieg would take steps to ensure that American taxpayers won’t help foot the bill.”

STEPHEN COLBERT. Another homophobic Trump joke.

TENNESSEE. District Attorney under investigation for remarks about not enforcing domestic violence laws for gay couples: ‘Northcott’s anti-gay comments were filmed at a town hall-style meeting back in 2018 but have only recently come to light. During the meeting, Northcott faced a question from a constituent who sarcastically asked about a “hypothetical” situation in which the federal government were to do something “ridiculous” and legalize same-sex marriage: “How as Christians do you think we should deal with all those situations?”’

PEACE AT LAST. Katy Perry and Taylor Swift have ended a years-long feud with a cookie treaty.

NEW JERSEY. School where an LGBTQ mural touched off controversy will be first to pilot LGBTQ curriculum: “Bergen County Arts & Science Charter School, a public school that rents space from Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church in Hackensack, was forced in May to paint over Keith Haring-inspired interlocking male symbols that were on a wall in a common area also used by church parishioners.”

READING IS LGBTQ. New books for your Pride month list.

A BIGGER SPLASH. David Hockney documentary remastered. Will screen at NYC’s Metrograph on June 21.

FILM REVIEW OF THE DAY. Breaking Banter on Rocketman.

HUMP DAY HOTTIE. Upal Wazed.

The post Stephanie J. Block, Census Materials, Greg Pence, Pete Buttigieg, Tennessee, Pride Books, David Hockney: HOT LINKS appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.


Spread the love
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

3:17 PM 6/12/2019

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  


Michael_Novakhov
shared this story
from The FBI News Review.

Trump Investigations from Michael_Novakhov (86 sites)
Michael Novakhov – SharedNewsLinks℠: Adam Schiff threatens to subpoena FBI director Chris Wray

Michael_Novakhov shared this story .

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff threatened to subpoena FBI Director Christopher Wray for what he says is the bureau’s failure to inform Congress about the status of a counterintelligence investigation into links between President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign and Russia.
“We’re running out of patience,” said Schiff Wednesday, who added he’s been seeking the information for months and has been rebuffed, despite requirements that the FBI keep Congress apprised of counterintelligence matters. He said the FBI has issued boilerplate non-responses to his inquiries and that he’ll issue a subpoena soon if they don’t produce more information.
Story Continued Below
“If we don’t get an answer soon, we’ll be issuing subpoenas,” he said.
Schiff’s comments followed a hearing of the Intelligence Committee that focused on evidence gathered by special counsel Robert Mueller that point toward concerns that Russia may have compromised — wittingly or unwittingly — members of Trump’s orbit. Though Mueller concluded he couldn’t establish a conspiracy between Trump campaign figures and Russia, his report was largely silent on the counterintelligence efforts.
The hearing, featuring a panel of veteran national security experts, laid bare the deep partisan rupture in Congress over Mueller’s report. Republicans on the panel asked virtually no questions about potential counterintelligence risks but trained their energy on poking holes in the FBI’s handling of the probe.
GOP members of the panel questioned whether figures identified in Mueller’s report as key links between the Trump campaign and Russia were really assets of the West. They suggested the FBI botched its counterintelligence and surveillance procedures in the conduct of their investigation of these links. And one, Rep. Rick Crawford of Arkansas, even suggested Obama administration figures intentionally “turned a blind eye” to Russian interference in the 2016 election, believing it would help Hillary Clinton.
Schiff, at one point, accused GOP colleagues of effectively urging people to “ignore everything Mueller has to say … because they have problems with aspects of the [surveillance] application.”
Even Republicans’ own selected witness, former prosecutor Andy McCarthy, at times undercut accusations that have become articles of faith to Trump and his allies.
McCarthy said he didn’t think any FBI officials or Justice Department figures acted “in bad faith” when they sought to surveil a Trump campaign associate. He said they made “mistakes,” but not intentional ones. “I don’t think anyone was acting in bad faith on the FISA warrant,” he said. Trump and his allies on Capitol Hill have argued that the FBI’s pursuit of the warrant on Page is proof they were seeking to damage Trump’s campaign in the run-up to the election. But there, too, McCarthy said otherwise.
“I don’t know that there’s evidence [FBI officials] were trying to scuttle the Trump campaign,” he said.
McCarthy also said that Trump campaign figures should have called the FBI when a Russian lawyer visited Trump Tower to ostensibly provide information meant to damage Clinton. And he contradicted the notion — espoused by Trump — that the Obama administration took no action to counter Russian interference in the 2016 election.
“They took some investigative steps,” McCarthy said, though he added that they may have proven insufficient because the administration was concerned about appearing “to be putting their thumb on the scale in an investigative way versus how do we stop what Russia is doing. You can certainly argue about the value judgment.”
Democrats spent Wednesday’s hearing working methodically to elevate Mueller’s evidence that the Trump campaign welcomed Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election and sought to benefit from it. They leaned on a panel of veteran national security experts to delve into each facet of Mueller’s findings – from the interactions between Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer at Trump Tower to Paul Manafort’s sharing of polling data with a Russia-linked associate to the elder Trump’s effort to build a tower in Moscow.
Republicans asked no questions on these subjects but instead questioned decision-making at the FBI – from former FBI Director James Comey’s decision to delay informing Congress about the Russia investigation, to the bureau’s reliance on former British spy Christopher Steele’s memos to obtain a surveillance warrant against Trump campaign associate Carter Page and the decision to decline to inform the Trump campaign that some of its officials were being investigated.
Story Continued Below
Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), the top Republican on the committee, ripped Mueller’s report as a “shoddy political hit piece” that “provided no useful information” about why it labeled certain figures as Russian assets, including Joseph Mifsud, whose interactions with Trump campaign associate George Papadopoulos led the FBI to open its investigation.
“Mueller stops short of calling Mifsud a Russian agent,” Nunes said. “My big concern about Mifsud is he was a Malta diplomat, he worked closely with the Italian government. He’s described in the press as a Western intelligence asset — by some in the press.”
Mueller’s report describes Mifsud as “a London-based professor who had connections to Russia and traveled to Moscow in April 2016.” He allegedly told Papadopoulos before it was known that Russians had obtained emails that would damage Hillary Clinton’s candidacy.
No other Republicans on the Intelligence Committee went as far as Nunes in slamming Mueller’s findings, but they repeatedly wondered why the FBI didn’t share information about its investigation with Trump’s campaign.
“If someone in my campaign was doing something nefarious … I would sure hope I was informed,” said Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-Ohio).
Schiff said the panel’s next hearing would focus on Russia’s intrusion into local election systems and whether the FBI followed Mueller’s leads.
Though the Republican push largely aligned with Trump’s mantra to keep the focus on investigators he has accused of leading a “witch hunt” against him, at times, they too broke from his arguments.
Nunes, questioning the FBI’s decisions to investigate former national security adviser Michael Flynn or his interactions with Russia’s ambassador, said he didn’t think former secretary of state John Kerry should be investigated for his own interactions with Iranians. Trump, a month earlier, said Kerry should be prosecuted for those meetings.
After Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) questioned decision to delay briefing Congress on the existence of the Russia probe until early 2017 – days before he made the probe public — Schiff corrected her to say her timeline was incorrect.
“The representative is not accurate,” he said, but added he was unable to provide details.





Michael Novakhov – SharedNewsLinks℠

1. Trump from Michael_Novakhov (197 sites): “US elections and russia” – Google News: Senators question FBI on Russian hack of voting software firm – PBS NewsHour


Senators question FBI on Russian hack of voting software firm  PBS NewsHour

In a letter sent to FBI Director Christopher Wray, Democratic Sens. Ron Wyden of Oregon and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, who is the ranking member of the …





 “US elections and russia” – Google News


1. Trump from Michael_Novakhov (197 sites)

1. Trump from Michael_Novakhov (197 sites): Politics: The census is a sleeping giant of a potential Trump administration scandal


This is such inside baseball. But the White House’s invocation of executive privilege shows how concerned it is.

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •  

Adam Schiff threatens to subpoena FBI director Chris Wray

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  


Michael_Novakhov
shared this story
.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff threatened to subpoena FBI Director Christopher Wray for what he says is the bureau’s failure to inform Congress about the status of a counterintelligence investigation into links between President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign and Russia.

“We’re running out of patience,” said Schiff Wednesday, who added he’s been seeking the information for months and has been rebuffed, despite requirements that the FBI keep Congress apprised of counterintelligence matters. He said the FBI has issued boilerplate non-responses to his inquiries and that he’ll issue a subpoena soon if they don’t produce more information.

Story Continued Below

“If we don’t get an answer soon, we’ll be issuing subpoenas,” he said.

Schiff’s comments followed a hearing of the Intelligence Committee that focused on evidence gathered by special counsel Robert Mueller that point toward concerns that Russia may have compromised — wittingly or unwittingly — members of Trump’s orbit. Though Mueller concluded he couldn’t establish a conspiracy between Trump campaign figures and Russia, his report was largely silent on the counterintelligence efforts.

The hearing, featuring a panel of veteran national security experts, laid bare the deep partisan rupture in Congress over Mueller’s report. Republicans on the panel asked virtually no questions about potential counterintelligence risks but trained their energy on poking holes in the FBI’s handling of the probe.

GOP members of the panel questioned whether figures identified in Mueller’s report as key links between the Trump campaign and Russia were really assets of the West. They suggested the FBI botched its counterintelligence and surveillance procedures in the conduct of their investigation of these links. And one, Rep. Rick Crawford of Arkansas, even suggested Obama administration figures intentionally “turned a blind eye” to Russian interference in the 2016 election, believing it would help Hillary Clinton.

Schiff, at one point, accused GOP colleagues of effectively urging people to “ignore everything Mueller has to say … because they have problems with aspects of the [surveillance] application.”

Even Republicans’ own selected witness, former prosecutor Andy McCarthy, at times undercut accusations that have become articles of faith to Trump and his allies.

McCarthy said he didn’t think any FBI officials or Justice Department figures acted “in bad faith” when they sought to surveil a Trump campaign associate. He said they made “mistakes,” but not intentional ones. “I don’t think anyone was acting in bad faith on the FISA warrant,” he said. Trump and his allies on Capitol Hill have argued that the FBI’s pursuit of the warrant on Page is proof they were seeking to damage Trump’s campaign in the run-up to the election. But there, too, McCarthy said otherwise.

“I don’t know that there’s evidence [FBI officials] were trying to scuttle the Trump campaign,” he said.

McCarthy also said that Trump campaign figures should have called the FBI when a Russian lawyer visited Trump Tower to ostensibly provide information meant to damage Clinton. And he contradicted the notion — espoused by Trump — that the Obama administration took no action to counter Russian interference in the 2016 election.

“They took some investigative steps,” McCarthy said, though he added that they may have proven insufficient because the administration was concerned about appearing “to be putting their thumb on the scale in an investigative way versus how do we stop what Russia is doing. You can certainly argue about the value judgment.”

Democrats spent Wednesday’s hearing working methodically to elevate Mueller’s evidence that the Trump campaign welcomed Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election and sought to benefit from it. They leaned on a panel of veteran national security experts to delve into each facet of Mueller’s findings – from the interactions between Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer at Trump Tower to Paul Manafort’s sharing of polling data with a Russia-linked associate to the elder Trump’s effort to build a tower in Moscow.

Republicans asked no questions on these subjects but instead questioned decision-making at the FBI – from former FBI Director James Comey’s decision to delay informing Congress about the Russia investigation, to the bureau’s reliance on former British spy Christopher Steele’s memos to obtain a surveillance warrant against Trump campaign associate Carter Page and the decision to decline to inform the Trump campaign that some of its officials were being investigated.

Story Continued Below

Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), the top Republican on the committee, ripped Mueller’s report as a “shoddy political hit piece” that “provided no useful information” about why it labeled certain figures as Russian assets, including Joseph Mifsud, whose interactions with Trump campaign associate George Papadopoulos led the FBI to open its investigation.

“Mueller stops short of calling Mifsud a Russian agent,” Nunes said. “My big concern about Mifsud is he was a Malta diplomat, he worked closely with the Italian government. He’s described in the press as a Western intelligence asset — by some in the press.”

Mueller’s report describes Mifsud as “a London-based professor who had connections to Russia and traveled to Moscow in April 2016.” He allegedly told Papadopoulos before it was known that Russians had obtained emails that would damage Hillary Clinton’s candidacy.

No other Republicans on the Intelligence Committee went as far as Nunes in slamming Mueller’s findings, but they repeatedly wondered why the FBI didn’t share information about its investigation with Trump’s campaign.

“If someone in my campaign was doing something nefarious … I would sure hope I was informed,” said Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-Ohio).

Schiff said the panel’s next hearing would focus on Russia’s intrusion into local election systems and whether the FBI followed Mueller’s leads.

Though the Republican push largely aligned with Trump’s mantra to keep the focus on investigators he has accused of leading a “witch hunt” against him, at times, they too broke from his arguments.

Nunes, questioning the FBI’s decisions to investigate former national security adviser Michael Flynn or his interactions with Russia’s ambassador, said he didn’t think former secretary of state John Kerry should be investigated for his own interactions with Iranians. Trump, a month earlier, said Kerry should be prosecuted for those meetings.

After Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) questioned decision to delay briefing Congress on the existence of the Russia probe until early 2017 – days before he made the probe public — Schiff corrected her to say her timeline was incorrect.

“The representative is not accurate,” he said, but added he was unable to provide details.


Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    169
    Shares
  • 151
  •  
  •  
  • 1
  • 17
  •  
  •  
  •