News that doesn't receive the necessary attention.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Miraculously, 16 media experts defend Hillary by using the term "baked in," as in no big deal, to describe FBI announcement that State Dept. emails are on Huma's husband's personal laptop-Rush Limbaugh, Oct. 31, 2016

Oct. 31, 2016, "Media Mantra: Clinton Emails Are "Baked In"" Rush Limbaugh

"RUSH: Montage of a bunch of people from all over the place -- CNN, Washington Post, New York Times, you name it--over the Comey announcement on Friday and what it means. 

DON LEMON: This e-mail scandal, is it baked in with voters? 

MARK MCKINNON: Most of this is baked into the cake. 

PAUL BEGALA: The damage of the e-mails (snickers), that's all baked in. 
 
KARL ROVE: The people who are for her, already have this baked in. 
 
JUAN WILLIAMS: I think most of this is baked in. 
 
LANHEE CHEN: This is something that I think is relatively baked in. 
 
RUSH: Sheesh! For crying out loud! 
 
JOHN DICKERSON: One of the things Democrats have been saying -- hoping, praying -- is that what they say is that these views are baked in. 
 
ROBERT COSTA: ...baked into the polling. They're baked into voters' perceptions. 
 
CORNELL BELCHER: To certain extent, it's already baked in. 
 
LIS SMITH: Right, because this is baked in. 
 
ASHLEY PARKER: A narrative that's always baked in the cake. 
 
DAVID CHALIAN: Yes! There is a largely baked-in factor. 
 
NICHOLAS CONFESSORE: You've probably baked in the e-mail stuff already. 
 
BRIANNA KEILAR: This sort of goes to what's already baked in with Hillary Clinton. 
 
EDWARD-ISAAC DOVERE: We're also at the point where this issue seems to be baked in. 
 
RICK WILSON: I think a lot of them are baked in the cake about how people feel about Hillary Clinton.

RUSH: Sixteen different people, all saying, "Nah, it doesn't make any difference what he said. It's already baked in! People supporting Hillary already factor it. They already baked in the emails! They already baked it in. And the people opposing Hillary? That's not gonna change anything. They've already baked it in."

Now, you even heard some Republicans in this. Karl Rove was in this list of people. Robert Costa. (Well, he's not a Republican.  He used to write at National Review. He's at the Washington Post now.) 

Yeah, that's the only so-called Republican I can find in there. Mark McKinnon, who ran Bush's media, but he's at that No Labels bunch now."... 

[Ed. note: I think Rick Wilson is a Jeb Bush "Republican."]

(continuing); "We know how this happens, by the way. This all comes from the Clinton campaign. Do you realize, folks, there's a letter from Eric Holder--and signed by a hundred other such dignitaries--condemning and opposing and crucifying and whatever Comey. Do you know who wrote it? The Clinton campaign. 

It has been learned the Clinton campaign wrote the letter over the signature of Eric Holder and these other sycophants who signed on to it. "It's already baked in. It doesn't make any difference. It doesn't matter!" You couldn't have a group of people more out of touch. You know, it's amazing the lengths that they are going to stay in denial....If I were in the establishment and I held the view of Trump that they hold...I would be really alarmed, curious, concerned over the size of these Trump rallies. It's undeniable that there is something happening in this country, and these people in the establishment want to act like there's nothing going on. Eh, that doesn't mean anything, those crowds!...That's just a bunch of people just... 

It means a hell of a lot, and they want to act like they're unmoved by it....I guarantee you, when your side's drawing 300 people -- or in the case of Tim Kaine, 30 people. When your side can't sell books, when your side can't book its cruises, and the other side's drawing 15,000 people every appearance and three or four times a day, and you look at that and you ignore it or you discard it or you say there's nothing to it, you are living in sheer, utter denial -- and that's where they are.  "Oh, it's already baked in! It doesn't matter. Hillary's gonna win.  This is not gonna change anything!"...  

And Trump is getting better, folks. I don't know how many of you have taken my suggestion to actually watch one of these Trump rallies on YouTube or via a Drudge link or wherever you find it.  But for the most part this past week, he was on message, he was from the teleprompter, and he was hitting a ton of different issues. It wasn't just NAFTA and trade deals and jobs.

It had all of that, but he was touching on a lot of issues substantively for over an hour at each one of these rallies. Do you know what it takes to go to a Trump rally? Do you know what kind of time? It's an all-day thing, folks. First you have to drive there. That's gonna take you some time, and many people are from out of town wherever these rallies are, so you've got the traffic of getting there. Then you have to park. You have to get there early because of security. You have to get there early, arrive early, stand in line, sometimes for hours. Then once you get in, it could be another two hours before Trump arrives and actually begins his portion of the rally.

Then when it's over, you don't just stream out of there. You wait around and you talk to other people there 'cause you've got 7,000 to 10,000 like-minded souls that you're meeting and getting to know.  They clear the deck so Trump can get out of there with no hassle, with no traffic. Then they let everybody else go. So you've gotta retrace your steps back to your car. You have to get in the traffic that ensues leaving this event. It can take hours to show up at a one-and-a-half hour Trump rally. And people have been doing this three and four times a day for this entire campaign all over the country, doesn't matter where you go.

And these people, the establishment look at this and say there's nothing happening there, it's nothing, it's just anecdotal. And the AP can do that story where they found one 29-year-old farmer in Warren County, Ohio, to say that he was voting for Hillary to save the GOP. Stop and think of that. A 29-year-old farmer from Warren County said, "I so hate Trump, I'm voting for Hillary to save the GOP." The AP ran with that, and that one guy, he was a stand-in for millions, they wanted us to believe.

So in that anecdotal case, oh, yeah, we're supposed to take that one guy and understand that it means and represents tens of thousands of people. But 15,000 people at a Trump rally, doesn't mean anything, Rush. You can't equate people showing up at a rally with voters. There's no science there, Rush. You don't even know that they're all gonna vote, much less for who. But then they turn around and try to tell us that one guy in Ohio stands for, represents a million people. It's just absurd." 

END TRANSCRIPT





==========

Trump has 7 point lead in Georgia, Survey USA poll, Oct. 25-27, 2016 (Tu-Th), 593 Georgia voters likely to vote or already voted. Trump leads by 17 points among Georgia independent voters

Trump 49
Hillary 42
Johnson 3

Oct. 25-27, 2016 (Tu-Th), 64% automated voice on home telephone, 36% responded to questionnaire on electronic device. 4.1 error margin, 47 male, 53 female. 33R, 29D, 35 Ind.

10/31/16, "In Georgia, Clinton Unable to Seal the Deal, Trails Trump by 7 With 11 Days to Go," Survey USA Operations 

"Democrats have high hopes for Georgia’s 16 electoral votes, but Hillary Clinton falls short in an election today, 10/28/16, according to SurveyUSA polling for WXIA-TV, the Tegna station in Atlanta. Republican Donald Trump is at 49%, Clinton at 42%, and Libertarian Gary Johnson at 3% at this hour. 

Among voters who have already returned a ballot, Trump leads by 6. Among voters who have not yet returned a ballot but who promise to vote before polls close on 11/08/16, Trump leads Clinton by 8. When the 2 groups are combined, Trump leads by 7, up from a 4-point Trump lead when SurveyUSA last polled Georgia for WXIA in August.

Trump leads by 58 points among rural men, by 56 points among voters focused on immigration, by 46 points among evangelical voters, by 44 points among whites, by 37 points among rural women, by 28 points among seniors, by 26 points in Northwest GA (which includes Dalton, Rome and 53 counties to the North and West of Greater Atlanta), by 26 points among college-educated whites, by 22 points among middle-income voters and by 18 points among high-school educated men.

Clinton holds 93% of the Democratic base and leads among moderates by 17 points. Although she does have a 21-point edge among just suburban women, when all women statewide are compiled, Clinton leads by just 4 points, not enough to overcome Trump’s 21-point advantage among men statewide... 

Trump is viewed extremely favorably by 17% of GA voters, extremely unfavorably by 38%. Clinton is viewed extremely favorably by 14% of GA voters, extremely unfavorably by 47%.

Respondent Filtering / Historical Context: 

SurveyUSA interviewed 800 state of GA adults 10/25/16 through 10/27/16. Of the adults interviewed, 683 were registered to vote in Georgia. Of the registered voters, 5% say they “almost always” vote in Presidential elections but will not vote in 2016 because they do not like any of the candidates on the ballot. An offsetting 5% say they “almost never” vote in Presidential elections but will vote in 2016 because they are uniquely drawn to one of the candidates. These so-called “new” voters split; they do not disproportionately favor Trump. Of the registered voters, 593 were determined by SurveyUSA to have already returned a ballot or to be likely to do so before polls close on 11/08/16.

This research was conducted using blended sample, mixed mode. Respondents reachable on a home telephone (64% of likely voters) were interviewed on their home telephone in the recorded voice of a professional announcer. Respondents not reachable on a home telephone (36% of likely voters) were shown a questionnaire on the display of their smartphone, tablet or other electronic device. Georgia last voted for a Democrat for President in 1992, when Bill Clinton captured the state’s then 13 electoral votes by 1 percentage point over George H. W. Bush. In 2012, Mitt Romney carried Georgia by 8 points. In 2008, John McCain carried Georgia by 7 points. George W. Bush carried Georgia by 17 points in 2004 and by 12 points in 2000."

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Georgia Independent voters (item 2)
-------------------
Trump 51
Hillary 34
Johnson 8

-----------------------

Below, % Georgia blacks and whites for Trump:

Georgia white voters: 67%
Georgia black voters: 10%

----------------

Below, % Georgia blacks and whites for Hillary:

Georgia white voters 23%
Georgia black voters 83%

----------------

Below, % Georgia blacks and whites for Johnson:
------------------

Georgia white voters 5%
Georgia black voters 0%

...........................  
Top Issues: (item 2)
......................

Trump voters:

Immigration 78%
Nat. security and terrorism 63%
Economy 47%
Education 7%
..........................

Hillary voters:

Education 85%
Economy 44%
Nat. security and terrorism 29%
Immigration 22%  













Above chart from item 2, Survey USA

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Additional source:

10/31/16, "EXCLUSIVE POLL: Trump lead grows in Georgia," WXIA TV, Atlanta, Kristen Reed and Jennifer Leslie

"With days until election day, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is slated to win Georgia's 16 electoral votes, according to a new SurveyUSA poll conducted for 11Alive.  Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton trails behind.

The survey shows Trump with 49 percent of the vote in the state; Clinton has 42 percent and Libertarian Gary Johnson has three percent. Six percent of voters surveyed are undecided. Trump's 7-point lead is up from 4 points in our last poll in August.

It's important to note this poll was taken before the revelation by the FBI Director that he's looking in to new e-mails possibly related to Clinton's use of a personal server as Secretary of State."...






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Trump 46.6, Hillary 43.2, USC Dornsife LA Times Presidential Election Daybreak Poll through Oct. 30, 2016, published Oct. 31

Trump 46.6
Hillary 43.2
 
10/31/16, USC Dornsife / LA Times Presidential Election Daybreak Poll







"About the Survey✝

The USC Dornsife/LA Times Presidential Election "Daybreak" Poll is part of the ongoing Understanding America Study: (UAS) at the University of Southern California’s (USC) Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research, in partnership with the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics and the Los Angeles Times. Every day, we invite one-seventh of the members of the UAS election panel to answer three predictive questions: What is the percent chance that… (1) you will vote in the presidential election? (2) you will vote for Clinton, Trump, or someone else? and (3) Clinton, Trump or someone else will win? As their answers come in, we update the charts daily (just after midnight) with an average of all of the prior week’s responses. To find out more about what lies behind the vote, each week we also ask respondents one or two extra questions about their preferences and values. The team responsible for the USC Dornsife/LA Times Presidential Election Poll four years ago developed the successful RAND Continuous Presidential Election Poll, which was based on the same methodology."



 

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In March 2016, FBI specifically warned Hillary campaign that spear phishing attempts were being made against it. Despite specific FBI warning, Hillary campaign IT worker gave go-ahead to click on spear phishing link that enabled Podesta email hack, said link was 'legitimate, imperative.' Domain was So. Pacific atoll-Smoking Gun (Hillary campaign itself enabled flood of Podesta emails, declined FBI help to prevent spear phishing access, could either drop out or create a huge diversion. Hillary seeks to divert attention from her gross negligence by rattling her US taxpayer funded sabres against her next target for bloody regime change-Putin)

In March 2016 the FBI specifically warned senior Hillary campaign officials that it was being targeted by spear phishing emails. The campaign declined FBI assistance on the matter. In the same month, March 2016, Hillary campaign "IT worker" declared a Podesta related spear phishing email "legitimate," approved "immediate" clicking on the tempting link, thus beginning the flood of Podesta emails, followed by a desperate need for a scapegoat (yeah, Putin, another chance to rattle sabres at him to help gin up WWIII) to divert attention from the campaign's gross negligence. It's common knowledge thatmost successful hacks today start with a phishing attack," and that "Gmail [used by Hillary campaign manager Podesta] is used for more than half of all data drop email accounts, making it the top webmail service used by attackers to receive credentials stolen via phishing." (So why is Podesta using it?) Information about spear phishing has been on the FBI website since at least 2009.

10/28/16, "How Podesta's Gmail Account Was Breached," the smokinggun.com

"Clinton campaign staff guilty of getting duped by hackers"

"So how did John Podesta’s e-mail account get hacked? The answer to that question came into embarrassing focus this morning with the latest Wikileaks dump of correspondence stolen from the Gmail account of Hillary Clinton's campaign manager. 

On March 19, a Saturday, Podesta received an e-mail--purportedly from Google--warning him that, “Someone has your password.” The alert (seen above) informed Podesta that a sign-in attempt from an IP address in Ukraine was thwarted and that, “You should change your password immediately.”
The e-mail, addressed "Hi John," included a blue “CHANGE PASSWORD” box to be clicked."...

[Ed. note: In March 2016 the FBI contacted Hillary's campaign, warned specifically that it was being targeted by "spear phishing emails." The Hillary campaign declined FBI's offer to help. A "spear phishing" link is exactly what a Hillary "IT worker" said was "absolutely imperative" to click on and thus in March 2016 enabled the flood of Podesta emails.] 

(continuing): "As TSG reported in August, similar messages were sent to the Gmail accounts of scores of other Clinton campaign officials around the time Podesta received the phony alert. An identical e-mail--containing the exact Ukrainian IP address--was received on March 22 by William Rinehart, a campaign organizer. The IP address included in the e-mails received by Podesta and Rinehart traces back to Kyivstar, Ukraine’s largest telecommunications company.

Like Rinehart, Podesta’s Gmail account was compromised by the “spear phishing” e-mail....

After the e-mail arrived in Podesta’s account, it appears that his chief of staff, Sara Latham, sought guidance from an IT worker with the Clinton campaign. After examining the “Someone has your password” e-mail, staffer Charles Delavan ...mistakenly assured Latham and Shane Hable, the campaign’s chief information officer, that, “This is a legitimate email. John needs to change his password immediately, and ensure that two-factor authorization is turned on his account.”

Delavan’s 9:54 AM e-mail included a link to an actual Google password change page.It is absolutely imperative that this is done ASAP,” he added.

Latham then forwarded Delavan’s email to Podesta and campaign staffer Milia Fisher, who had access to Podesta’s Gmail account. 

The gmail one is real wrote Latham, who instructed Fisher to change Podesta’s password since “Don’t want to lock him out of his in box!”

But instead of following the link provided by Delavan, it appears that Podesta or Fisher...clicked on the “CHANGE PASSWORD” box in the original “spear phishing” correspondence (a copy of which which was included in the e-mail chain that Saturday morning).

That link led to what appeared to be a legitimate Google page, but was actually a site designed by the hackers to capture a target’s log-in credentials. The link to the spoofed Gmail page included a lengthy underlying url with the .tk suffix, indicating that the domain created to trick Podesta was registered in Tokelau, a remote group of South Pacific atolls.

The hidden 293-character link included a string of characters containing the encoded Gmail address for Podesta (john.podesta@gmail.com).

The e-mails stolen in the Podesta hack and posted on Wikileaks show that the most recent correspondence is from March 21.

While Delavan protected his Twitter page following the publication of this story, he did offer the public some sage advice earlier this week. In an October 25 tweet, Delavan wrote, “don’t click on anything ever. delete your email account. move to the woods.” (1 page) Image above from The Smoking Gun

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Among comments

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"Scott Johnson ·

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Added: 7/28/16 article about March 2016 FBI warning to Hillary campaign specifically about "spear phishing." Hillary campaign declined FBI assistance on the matter when it asked for access to documents to help trace the spear phishers. (At the time Hillary was still under investigation by the FBI for possible criminal national security violations). "The Brooklyn warning also could raise new questions about why the campaign and the DNC didn’t take the matter more seriously."...

7/28/16, "FBI warned Clinton campaign last spring of cyberattack," Michael Isikoff, Yahoo News  

"The FBI warned the Clinton campaign that it was a target of a cyberattack last March, just weeks before the Democratic National Committee discovered it had been penetrated by hackers it now believes were working for Russian intelligence, two sources who have been briefed on the matter told Yahoo News. 

In a meeting with senior officials at the campaign’s Brooklyn headquarters, FBI agents laid out concerns that cyberhackers had used so-called spear-phishing emails as part of an attempt to penetrate the campaign’s computers, the sources said. One of the sources said agents conducting a national security investigation asked the Clinton campaign to turn over internal computer logs as well as the personal email addresses of senior campaign officials. 

But the campaign, through its lawyers, declined to provide the data, deciding that the FBI’s request for sensitive personal and campaign information data was too broad and intrusive, the source said. 

A second source who had been briefed on the matter and who confirmed the Brooklyn meeting said agents provided no specific information to the campaign about the identity of the cyberhackers or whether they were associated with a foreign government. The source said the campaign was already aware of attempts to penetrate its computers and had taken steps to thwart them, emphasizing that there is still no evidence that the campaign’s computers had actually been successfully penetrated. 

But the potential that the intruders were associated with a foreign government should have come as no surprise to the Clinton campaign, said several sources knowledgeable about the investigation. Chinese intelligence hackers were widely reported to have penetrated both the campaigns of Barack Obama and John McCain in 2008. 

The Brooklyn warning also could raise new questions about why the campaign and the DNC didn’t take the matter more seriously. It came just four months after the DNC had also been contacted by FBI agents alerting its information technology specialists about a cyberattack on its computers, the sources told Yahoo News. As with the warning to the Clinton campaign, the FBI initially provided no details to the DNC.... 

By mid-May, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper was telling reporters that US. Intelligence officials “already had some indications” of hacks into political campaigns that were likely linked to foreign governments and that “we’ll probably have more.” 

In a talk at the Aspen Security Forum Thursday, Clapper said the U.S. government is not “quite ready yet” to “make a public call” on who was behind the cyberassault on the DNC, but he suggested one of “the usual suspects” is likely to blame. “We don’t know enough [yet] to…ascribe a motivation, regardless of who it may have been,” Clapper said.... 

Clapper is reportedly among a number of U.S. intelligence officials who have resisted calls to publicly blame the Russians, viewing it as likely the kind of activity that most intelligence agencies engage in. “[I’m] taken aback a bit by…the hyperventilation over this,” Clapper said during his Aspen appearance, adding in a sarcastic tone, “I’m shocked somebody did some hacking. That’s never happened before.”... 

The FBI’s request to turn over internal computer logs and personal email information came at an awkward moment for the Clinton campaign, said the source, familiar with the campaign’s internal deliberations. At the time, the FBI was still actively and aggressively conducting a criminal investigation into whether Clinton had compromised national security secrets by sending classified emails through a private computer server in the basement of her home in Chappaqua, N.Y. There were already press reports, to date unconfirmed, that the investigation might have expanded to include dealings relating to the Clinton Foundation. Campaign officials had reason to fear that any production of campaign computer logs and personal email accounts could be used to further such a probe. At the Brooklyn meeting, FBI agents emphasized that the request for data was unrelated to the separate probe into Clinton’s email server. 

But after deliberating about the bureau’s request, and in light of the lack of details provided by the FBI and the absence of a subpoena, the Clinton campaign chose to turn down the bureau's request, the source said."

............................


Added: "Mrs. Clinton has clearly disqualified herself from ever coming near classified information again....Having Clinton anywhere near the White House is just not a good idea."

10/29/16, "Democrats should ask Clinton to step aside," Chicago Tribune, John Kass, opinion


"Has America become so numb by the decades of lies and cynicism oozing from Clinton Inc. that it could elect Hillary Clinton as president, even after Friday's FBI announcement that it had reopened an investigation of her emails while secretary of state? We'll find out soon enough. 

It's obvious the American political system is breaking down. 

It's been crumbling for some time now, and the establishment elite know it and they're properly frightened. Donald Trump, the vulgarian at their gates, is a symptom, not a cause. Hillary Clinton and husband Bill are both cause and effect. 

FBI director James Comey's announcement about the renewed Clinton email investigation is the bombshell in the presidential campaign. That he announced this so close to Election Day should tell every thinking person that what the FBI is looking at is extremely serious. 

This can't be about pervert Anthony Weiner and his reported desire for a teenage girl. But it can be about the laptop of Weiner's wife, Clinton aide Huma Abedin, and emails between her and Hillary. It comes after the FBI investigation in which Comey concluded Clinton had lied and been "reckless" with national secrets, but said he could not recommend prosecution. 

So what should the Democrats do now? 

If ruling Democrats hold themselves to the high moral standards they impose on the people they govern, they would follow a simple process: 

They would demand that Mrs. Clinton step down, immediately, and let her vice presidential nominee, Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, stand in her place. 

Democrats should say, honestly, that with a new criminal investigation going on into events around her home-brew email server from the time she was secretary of state, having Clinton anywhere near the White House is just not a good idea. 

Since Oct. 7, WikiLeaks has released 35,000 emails hacked from Clinton campaign boss John Podesta. Now WikiLeaks, no longer a neutral player but an active anti-Clinton agency, plans to release another 15,000 emails. 

What if she is elected? Think of a nation suffering a bad economy and continuing chaos in the Middle East, and now also facing a criminal investigation of a president. Add to that congressional investigations and a public vision of Clinton as a Nixonian figure wandering the halls, wringing her hands. 

The best thing would be for Democrats to ask her to step down now. It would be the most responsible thing to do, if the nation were more important to them than power. And the American news media--fairly or not firmly identified in the public mind as Mrs. Clinton's political action committee--should begin demanding it. 

But what will Hillary do? 

She'll stick and ride this out and turn her anger toward Comey. For Hillary and Bill Clinton, it has always been about power, about the Clinton Restoration and protecting fortunes already made by selling nothing but political influence. 

She'll remind the nation that she's a woman and that Donald Trump said terrible things about women. If there is another notorious Trump video to be leaked, the Clintons should probably leak it now.  
Then her allies in media can talk about misogyny and sexual politics and the headlines can be all about Trump as the boor he is and Hillary as champion of female victims, which she has never been. 

Remember that Bill Clinton leveraged the "Year of the Woman."

 Then he preyed on women in the White House and Hillary protected him. But the political left — most particularly the women of the left — defended him because he promised to protect abortion rights and their other agendas. 

If you take a step back from tribal politics, you'll see that Mrs. Clinton has clearly disqualified herself from ever coming near classified information again. If she were a young person straight out of grad school hoping to land a government job, Hillary Clinton would be laughed out of Washington with her record. She'd never be hired. 

As secretary of state she kept classified documents on the home-brew server in her basement, which is against the law. She lied about it to the American people. She couldn't remember details dozens of times when questioned by the FBI. Her aides destroyed evidence by BleachBit and hammers. Her husband, Bill, met secretly on an airport tarmac with Attorney General Loretta Lynch for about a half-hour, and all they said they talked about was golf and the grandkids. 

And there was no prosecution of Hillary.

That isn't merely wrong and unethical. It is poisonous.

And during this presidential campaign, Americans were confronted with a two-tiered system of federal justice: one for standards for the Clintons and one for the peasants.

I've always figured that, as secretary of state, Clinton kept her home-brew email server — from which foreign intelligence agencies could hack top secret information — so she could shield the influence peddling that helped make the Clintons several fortunes.

The Clintons weren't skilled merchants. They weren't traders or manufacturers. The Clintons never produced anything tangible. They had no science, patents or devices to make them millions upon millions of dollars. 

All they had to sell, really, was influence. And they used our federal government to leverage it. 

If a presidential election is as much about the people as it is about the candidates, then we'll learn plenty about ourselves in the coming days, won't we?"
.................
......

DNC two month computer security review began in September 2015. Experts found many flaws, made dozens of recommendations, DNC didn't act on any of them, thus allowing already present hackers to stay for nearly a year. DNC desperately needed to divert attention from themselves: "Cyber-security assessments can be a mixed blessing. Legal experts say some general counsels advise organizations against doing such assessments if they don’t have the ability to quickly fix any problems the auditors find, because customers and shareholders could have cause to sue if an organization knowingly disregards such warnings." 

7/26/16, "Democrats Ignored Cybersecurity Warnings Before Theft," Bloomberg, Michael Riley

 "The Democratic National Committee was warned last fall that its computer network was susceptible to attacks but didn’t follow the security advice it was given, according to three people familiar with the matter.

The missed opportunity is another blow to party officials already embarrassed by the theft and public disclosure of e-mails that have disrupted their presidential nominating convention in Philadelphia and led their chairwoman to resign.

Computer security consultants hired by the DNC made dozens of recommendations after a two-month review, the people said. 


Following the advice, which would typically include having specialists hunt for intruders on the network, might have alerted party officials that hackers had been lurking in their network for weeks -- hackers who would stay for nearly a year Instead, officials didn’t discover the breach until April....

Cyber-security assessments can be a mixed blessing. Legal experts say some general counsels advise organizations against doing such assessments if they don’t have the ability to quickly fix any problems the auditors find, because customers and shareholders could have cause to sue if an organization knowingly disregards such warnings."...
 






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Sunday, October 30, 2016

Mrs. Clinton should step down immediately and let Sen. Tim Kaine stand in her place. She has clearly disqualified herself from coming near classified information or the White House ever again-Chicago Tribune, John Kass, opinion (Much less for another 8 yrs. making a grand total of 16 yrs. in the White House)

10/29/16, "Democrats should ask Clinton to step aside," Chicago Tribune, John Kass, opinion 

"Has America become so numb by the decades of lies and cynicism oozing from Clinton Inc. that it could elect Hillary Clinton as president, even after Friday's FBI announcement that it had reopened an investigation of her emails while secretary of state? We'll find out soon enough.

It's obvious the American political system is breaking down.

It's been crumbling for some time now, and the establishment elite know it and they're properly frightened. Donald Trump, the vulgarian at their gates, is a symptom, not a cause. Hillary Clinton and husband Bill are both cause and effect.

FBI director James Comey's announcement about the renewed Clinton email investigation is the bombshell in the presidential campaign. That he announced this so close to Election Day should tell every thinking person that what the FBI is looking at is extremely serious.

This can't be about pervert Anthony Weiner and his reported desire for a teenage girl. But it can be about the laptop of Weiner's wife, Clinton aide Huma Abedin, and emails between her and Hillary. It comes after the FBI investigation in which Comey concluded Clinton had lied and been "reckless" with national secrets, but said he could not recommend prosecution.

So what should the Democrats do now?

If ruling Democrats hold themselves to the high moral standards they impose on the people they govern, they would follow a simple process:

They would demand that Mrs. Clinton step down, immediately, and let her vice presidential nominee, Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, stand in her place.

Democrats should say, honestly, that with a new criminal investigation going on into events around her home-brew email server from the time she was secretary of state, having Clinton anywhere near the White House is just not a good idea.

Since Oct. 7, WikiLeaks has released 35,000 emails hacked from Clinton campaign boss John Podesta. Now WikiLeaks, no longer a neutral player but an active anti-Clinton agency, plans to release another 15,000 emails.

What if she is elected? Think of a nation suffering a bad economy and continuing chaos in the Middle East, and now also facing a criminal investigation of a president. Add to that congressional investigations and a public vision of Clinton as a Nixonian figure wandering the halls, wringing her hands.

The best thing would be for Democrats to ask her to step down now. It would be the most responsible thing to do, if the nation were more important to them than power. And the American news media--fairly or not firmly identified in the public mind as Mrs. Clinton's political action committee--should begin demanding it.

But what will Hillary do?

She'll stick and ride this out and turn her anger toward Comey. For Hillary and Bill Clinton, it has always been about power, about the Clinton Restoration and protecting fortunes already made by selling nothing but political influence.

She'll remind the nation that she's a woman and that Donald Trump said terrible things about women. If there is another notorious Trump video to be leaked, the Clintons should probably leak it now. 

Then her allies in media can talk about misogyny and sexual politics and the headlines can be all about Trump as the boor he is and Hillary as champion of female victims, which she has never been.

Remember that Bill Clinton leveraged the "Year of the Woman." 

Then he preyed on women in the White House and Hillary protected him. But the political left — most particularly the women of the left — defended him because he promised to protect abortion rights and their other agendas.

If you take a step back from tribal politics, you'll see that Mrs. Clinton has clearly disqualified herself from ever coming near classified information again. If she were a young person straight out of grad school hoping to land a government job, Hillary Clinton would be laughed out of Washington with her record. She'd never be hired.

As secretary of state she kept classified documents on the home-brew server in her basement, which is against the law. She lied about it to the American people. She couldn't remember details dozens of times when questioned by the FBI. Her aides destroyed evidence by BleachBit and hammers. Her husband, Bill, met secretly on an airport tarmac with Attorney General Loretta Lynch for about a half-hour, and all they said they talked about was golf and the grandkids.

And there was no prosecution of Hillary.

That isn't merely wrong and unethical. It is poisonous. 

And during this presidential campaign, Americans were confronted with a two-tiered system of federal justice: one for standards for the Clintons and one for the peasants. 

I've always figured that, as secretary of state, Clinton kept her home-brew email server — from which foreign intelligence agencies could hack top secret information — so she could shield the influence peddling that helped make the Clintons several fortunes.

The Clintons weren't skilled merchants. They weren't traders or manufacturers. The Clintons never produced anything tangible. They had no science, patents or devices to make them millions upon millions of dollars.

All they had to sell, really, was influence. And they used our federal government to leverage it.

If a presidential election is as much about the people as it is about the candidates, then we'll learn plenty about ourselves in the coming days, won't we?"

.....................



..........

Trump has 4 point lead in Florida, NY Times Siena College Poll, Oct. 25-27, 2016. 814 likely Florida voters. Trump leads by 12 points among Florida independent voters

Trump 46
Hillary 42
Johnson 4
Stein 2

Independent Florida voters

Trump 45
Hillary 33
Johnson 9
Stein 4

Oct. 25-27, 2016 (Tu-Th), 814 likely Florida voters, error margin 3.4. (32D, 34R, 31 Ind.) Male 46, female 54 (+8 female). White 64, Black 11, Latino 16. Land line and cell phone (45%) interviews.

10/30/16, "New York Times-Siena College Poll"
.........................

10/30/16, "Latest Upshot Poll Shows Trump With a Lead in Florida," NY Times, Nate Cohn 

"A New York Times Upshot/Siena poll released Sunday...gives Mr. Trump a four-point lead in Florida, 46 percent to 42 percent, in a four-way race. In our first poll of Florida a month ago, Mr. Trump trailed Hillary Clinton by a percentage point.... 

The poll is not the only one to show Mr. Trump in the lead. A Bloomberg/Selzer poll, which is methodologically similar to the New York Times Upshot/Siena poll, showed Mr. Trump with a two-point edge last week."... 

Mr. Trump won 86 percent of self-identified Republicans — the highest percentage of that group in any Upshot/Siena survey so far this year.

He had the support of 84 percent of registered Republicans, up from 72 percent in September and also the highest of any Upshot/Siena survey this year. 

Mr. Trump’s consolidation of Republican-leaning voters is a trend in national surveys, and it comes alongside a corresponding decline in the number of supporters for Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate, who received just 4 percent of the vote in our survey — the lowest of any Upshot/Siena poll. Republicans have been likelier than Democrats to support Mr. Johnson in most of our polls. 

Even college-educated white voters, who have been skeptical of Mr. Trump nationwide, are showing less skepticism in Florida. He has a lead of 51 percent to 35 percent among those voters in our survey. 

Clinton weakness among white working-class Democrats.

Mr. Trump leads among white voters without a college degree by an impressive margin of 63 percent to 24 percent. He’s so strong that Mrs. Clinton has just 55 percent of the vote among white registered Democrats without a degree, compared with Mr. Trump’s 32 percent.

The combination of Republican unity and a large dissenting vote among registered Democrats is responsible for Mr. Trump’s lead."... 

NY Times Siena Poll Methodology: Poll used 2012 turnout model: "The turnout score was based on a model of turnout in the 2012 presidential election. The probabilities were applied to 2016."


Siena: "Self-identified independents have moved from leaning to Trump by two points to now giving the Republican a twelve point advantage as support for Johnson has been cut in half,” said Siena College Poll Director Don Levy.Trump has extended his lead with men from nine points to 18 and cut into Clinton’s advantage among women, trimming it from ten to seven points."





 
.......   

 


..............

Trump sign stealers in Brevard County, Florida, beware: Brevard County Trump supporters "just got a shitload more signs today" and they're "attaching a little gift for the sign thieves"-Oct. 29, 2016

10/29/16, "Donald Trump and Mike Pence Stride Confidently Amid Surging Support, Polls and Crowds," tcth, sundance

Among comments to above post: 

"kingjulianx says:

Below, Brevard County, Florida









"Beverly says:
October 30, 2016 at 12:02 am 
........................ 

"law4lifeblog says:

.................

Below, man in Florida received an electric shock while trying to steal a booby trapped Trump sign:















9/30/16, "Man electrocuted while trying to steal booby trapped Trump sign," WDBO, Orlando, Fla., news965.com, Samantha Jordan

"A very annoyed Donald Trump supporter has built a wall of electricity to protect his campaign sign from thieves.

A video posted to YouTube [You Tube has removed the video] shows a neighbor attempting to steal the Trump sign from a yard. The owner says his signs have been stolen and vandalized in the past, so he decided to booby trap his newest one.

Surveillance video captures the hoodie-wearing neighbor trying to take the sign...and he's instantly shocked! He then turns and runs away.

The homeowner claims that the man has been charged with trespassing. Watch the video HERE."

[Comment: Oct. 30, 2016: You Tube has removed the video. The above image is a screen shot from the now removed video, via WDBO. I saw the video before it was removed. The hooded guy is first seen walking along the street at the top of the photo, as he walks he eyes the Trump sign, disappears down the street, then comes back, heads for the property with the Trump sign, puts his hand on the sign, then immediately jumps several inches. Susan]





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Saturday, October 29, 2016

NOAA was warned in 2009 of 'significant' security weaknesses, by July 2014 still hadn't corrected them, and in Sept. 2014 was hacked by the Chinese. NOAA failed to report the attack to Commerce Dept. IG until Nov. 4, first hid event from public by saying systems were down for 'unscheduled maintenance'-Washington Post, Nov. 2014

2009: NOAA had "significant" security weaknesses, per IG report

July 15, 2014 report: "Significant Security Deficiencies in NOAA's Information Systems Create Risks in its National Critical Mission," US Commerce Dept., Office of Inspector General.  

Sept. 2014: NOAA computers were hacked by the Chinese

"A July (2014) report on NOAA by the Inspector General for the Commerce Department--where NOAA sits--criticized an array of "high-risk vulnerabilities" in the security of NOAA’s satellite information and weather service systems. The report echoed the views of a 2009 audit from the IG that said the primary system that processes satellite data from two environmental and meteorological systems had “significant security weaknesses, and that “a security breach could have severe or catastrophic adverse effects.” The watchdog’s previously unreleased report, obtained by the Post under a Freedom of Information Act request, called for “immediate management attention” and said NOAA’s security planning was so poor that the agency had little idea how vulnerable its system was....The server had security protections, but the person compared the security to leaving a house protected by "just a screen door.""...

...................

Nov. 12, 2014, "Chinese hack U.S. weather systems, satellite network," Washington Post,

Hackers from China breached the federal weather network recently, forcing cybersecurity teams to seal off data vital to disaster planning, aviation, shipping and scores of other crucial uses, officials said.

The intrusion occurred in late September but officials gave no indication that they had a problem until Oct. 20,"...

[Ed. note: The Oct. 20 admission was only internally and to Congress. The truth wasn't admitted publicly until sometime in November.]

(continuing): "said three people familiar with the hack and the subsequent reaction by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which includes the National Weather Service. Even then, NOAA did not say its systems were compromised.

Officials also said that the agency did not notify the proper authorities when it learned of the attack.

NOAA officials declined to discuss the suspected source of the attack, whether it affected classified data and the delay in notification. NOAA said publicly last month that it was doing “unscheduled maintenance” on its network, without saying a computer hack had made that necessary. 

In a statement released Wednesday, NOAA spokesman Scott Smullen acknowledged the hacks and said “incident response began immediately.” He said all systems were working again and that forecasts were accurately delivered to the public. Smullen declined to answer questions beyond his statement, citing an investigation into the attack.

Determining the origin of cyber­attacks is difficult, experts said, and Chinese officials have denied repeated accusations that they intrude in U.S. government computer systems for espionage or other purposes. 

Geng Shuang of the Chinese Embassy said the consulate was not aware of the case and had not been contacted by the U.S. government about the attacks.

Cyberattack is quite common in today’s cyberspace,” he said. “Jumping to conclusions on its origin without hard evidence is not responsible at all.” The embassy also urged “relevant U.S. parties to stop this kind of unfounded accusation.” 

But NOAA confirmed to Rep. Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.) that China was behind the attack, the congressman said. Wolf has a long-standing interest in cybersecurity and asked NOAA about the incident after an inquiry from The Washington Post.

NOAA told me it was a hack and it was China,” said Wolf, who also scolded the agency for not disclosing the attack “and deliberately misleading the American public in its replies.

“They had an obligation to tell the truth,” Wolf said. “They covered it up.”

Commerce Department Inspector General Todd Zinser said his office was not notified of the breach until Nov. 4, well after he believes the hack occurred. He said that is a violation of agency policy requiring any security incident to be reported to his office within two days of discovering the problem.
 
“We’re in the process of looking into the matter, including why NOAA did not comply with the requirements to notify law enforcement about the incident,” Zinser said.

Wolf said he did not know if the breach involved classified material or what information was accessed.

Confirmation of the NOAA hack followed an admission Monday by the U.S. Postal Service that a suspected Chinese attack--also in September--compromised data on 800,000 employees, including letter carriers on up through the postmaster general.

NOAA officials also would not say whether the attack removed material or inserted malicious software in its system, which is used by civilian and military forecasters in the United States and also feeds weather models at the main centers for Europe and Canada.

NOAA’s National Ice Center Web site also was down for a week in late October. The center is a partnership with the Navy and Coast Guard to monitor conditions for navigation.

The two-day outage skewed the accuracy of National Weather Service long-range forecasts slightly, according to NOAA.

The attack in September hit a Web server that connects to many NOAA computers, said one person familiar with the incursion. The server had security protections, but the person compared the security to leaving a house protected by “just a screen door.” 

Smullen’s statement said that four sites were hit by the breach.

Weather satellites orbit hundreds to thousands of miles above Earth and offer continuous views of weather systems, such as hurricanes, thunderstorms and cold fronts, while also measuring temperature and moisture at different altitudes — all crucial bits that feed prediction models. To get that information to the public, NOAA makes satellite data and imagery publicly available through the Web, as well as file-transfer networks for downloads.

NOAA has characterized its decision to cut off satellite images as causing minimal disruption. But it has previously touted those same systems as intrinsic to the nation’s “environmental intelligence.”

NOAA satellites “provide critical data for forecasts and warnings that are vital to every citizen and to our economy as a whole,” NOAA Administrator Kathryn D. Sullivan said a year ago. 

Wolf said a hack could steal technical insights or cull isolated information “that may not look significant until they’re put with something else and then they become valuable.”

“The Chinese are stealing us blind,” Wolf said. 

The attack on NOAA joins a spate of cyber-espionage on federal systems revealed recently, including an attack suspected from Russia that breached unclassified White House computer networks.

The October satellite data outage meant that the National Weather Service and centers around the world did not receive large amounts of information.

“All the operational data sent via NOAA, which is normally an excellent service, was lost,” said Stephen English, head of the satellite section at the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts in Reading, England. The center is renowned for running a highly advanced global weather prediction model that during Hurricane Sandy in 2012, for example, aided evacuations and preparations in the United States when it signaled that the superstorm would hit land rather than hook out to sea. 

The Rutgers University Global Snow Lab, which provides daily snow cover updates for researchers and forecasters using a data feed from the Ice Center, posted a notice on its Web site that its reports were incomplete throughout the outage.

A July report on NOAA by the Inspector General for the Commerce Department--where NOAA sits--criticized an array of “high-risk vulnerabilities” in the security of NOAA’s satellite information and weather service systems.

The report echoed the views of a 2009 audit from the IG that said the primary system that processes satellite data from two environmental and meteorological systems had “significant” security weaknesses, and that “a security breach could have severe or catastrophic adverse effects.”

The watchdog’s previously unreleased report, obtained by The Post under a Freedom of Information Act request, called for “immediate management attention” and said NOAA’s security planning was so poor that the agency had little idea how vulnerable its system was."
 
................................

Additional reference on Nov. 2014 Washington Post NOAA hacking story: 

11/13/2014, "NOAA Misled Congress About Hack From China, Finally Owns up to Breach," DailyTech, Jason Mick

"Auditors from Commerce Department had been complaining since 2009 about weak security, but NOAA did little, if anything"....

III. "A person familiar with the inner workings of the NOAA's network, said the hackers targeted a central system that was connected to many data networks.  While such a critical system might be expected to tightly protected, instead, the source said, it had the security equivalent of "just a screen door."" 

IV. "China and the U.S. have been at odds in recent months over cybersecurity, with the Obama administration going as far as to charge Chinese military officers in mainland China with hacking charges, a mostly theatrical if punitive move.  China responded by threatening to ban or further restrict American technology product sales in mainland China.

The Obama administration and China did seem to mend broken fences somewhat this week, though, signing a major climate deal."...

........ 
..............................

Added: More from Rep. Frank Wolf (mentioned in Wash. Post article) about how easy it is to hack US entities: If you are a major law firm and you’re working on a trade case with China, they’ll strip your computers.

US Rep. Frank Wolf-R served 34 years in congress, Jan. 1981 -Jan. 2015, for Virginia's 10th district: 

11/14/2014, "Rep. Wolf: Chinese Hackers ‘Literally Taking Whatever They Want’," CNS News, Barbara Hollingsworth

"Washington is not doing nearly enough to stop Chinese hackers, who reportedly broke into the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) computer system in September, from stealing critical information from U.S. government agencies and American businesses, says Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA).

They have a more sophisticated spying apparatus than the KGB had, Wolf told CNSNews.com.

We’re losing jobs, technology, everything is leaving. It’s like they’re coming in and literally taking whatever they want to take....

“And you don’t see a coordinated effort either from the Congress or from the administration.”...

If you are a major law firm and you’re working on a trade case with China, they’ll strip your computers, said the Virginia Republican, who is retiring this year after serving in the House since 1980. "...

..................


Added: NASA was hacked 13 times in 2011:

Foreign governments have no need to hack US government computers. They know they can take what they want: Reuters, BBC:

3/2/2012, NASA says it was hacked 13 times last year,” Reuters

NASA said hackers broke into its computer systems 13 times last year, stealing employee credentials and gaining access to mission-critical projects in breaches that could compromise U.S. national security.”…
....................

NASA had been warned in 2009 that it was failing to take steps needed to protect its information: BBC

11/15/2012, “NASA to encrypt data after its latest laptop loss,” BBC

NASA "had been warned in 2009 that it was not taking enough steps to sufficiently protect information.""

...........

=============
..... 
March 2012 article-NASA chief Bolden says he's "going to sign a directive" ordering NASA portable devices to use encryption. As of November 2012, still no encryption. "Bolden also said that most attacks are "by kids who are just trying to impress people.""

3/21/2012, "Hearing Notes: Charles Bolden Testifies on NASA's FY 2013 Budget," spaceref.com, Keith Cowing

"When (Rep.) Wolf mentioned the recent NASA IG report on computer security and the spate of incidents, Bolden said that he was going to sign a directive, and that all portable devices would use encryption. He said he should have known better and that it was his fault that this had not been implemented sooner. Bolden said that he had talked to his staff and that when compared to other agencies IT security that NASA was "woefully deficient". Bolden also said that most attacks are "by kids who are just trying to impress people."

Bolden said that his IG had told him that it would be a simple matter for him to tell his staff to encrypt everything - but his staff is spread across NASA and each center has different requirements. When Rep. Wolf asked Bolden if he needed Congressional language to direct him Bolden said "OH, NO NO" and that he had enough direction already."...

===========


November 2012: Still no encryption for NASA computers as promised in March 2012. Had been warned in 2009, did nothing. Between 4/2009 and 4/2011, 48 NASA devices--unencrypted-- were lost or stolen:

11/15/2012, “NASA to encrypt data after its latest laptop loss,” BBC

  
.......................

Added: NOAA has been a deeply corrupt rogue operation for many years. July 2010 article mentions IG Todd Zinser who also appears in Nov. 2014 Washington Post article above about NOAA corruption:

July 1, 2010, "Audit cites wide fund abuse by NOAA cops," Gloucester Times, Richard Gaines

"Tens of millions in fines levied against U.S. commercial fishermen held in an unrecorded account were used by the fisheries law enforcement division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to fuel extravagant purchases and foreign travel, according to a forensic audit for a U.S. inspector general made public Thursday.

Among the discoveries by the accounting firm KPMG, brought in by Department of Commerce's IG's office, was that NOAA police own more vehicles "by a substantial margin" than they have officers — 202 vehicles for 172 officers.

The audit also found multiple purchases on the same day from the same vendor, six-figure overseas' convention spending and the purchase of 22 vessels including a $300,000 "undercover" vessel described by the manufacturer as "luxurious," with a "beautifully appointed cabin." 

All of those purchases bypassed internal review, the audit found.

In all, the mess of an asset forfeiture fund — used by the police and legal divisions — was of a magnitude greater than estimated by the initial investigators of IG Todd Zinser.

While the Asset Forfeiture Fund was loosely estimated last spring to involve $8.5 million, the forensic audit concluded that NOAA fisheries law enforcement may have brought in as much as $96 million over 41/2 years through June 2009 and spent $49 million via more than 82,000 transactions.

Although the investigation of the fund covers only as far back as January 2005, the police chief, Dale Jones, was appointed in 1999 late in the administration of President Bill Clinton.

Jones apparently was removed from his office — if not the payroll in March after Zinser announced at a congressional oversight hearing here in Gloucester, the epicenter of resistance to NOAA law enforcement and fisheries management policies, that his teams had evidence Jones misused the fund for personal overseas travel.

The next day, at a different oversight hearing into NOAA law enforcement abuses in Washington, Zinser made another major accusation — that Jones had ordered the shredding of documents while the IG's investigation was nearing its conclusion.

The only subsequent notice of the law enforcement scandal that followed, however, was a cryptic announcement from NOAA that a career fisheries manager had been named acting head of law enforcement. The announcement of the departmental change did not even mention Jones' name.

NOAA Chief Counsel Lois Schiffer and Eric Schwaab, who heads NOAA Fisheries for chief administrator Jane Lubchenco, announced after the IG's preliminary report of police abuses that there would be no looking back or effort to rectify past miscarriages of justice.

NOAA has also fought against Freedom of Information Act requests by the Times seeking official clarification of whether Jones remains on the federal payroll.

Lubchenco did not respond to an invitation to comment Thursday, but NOAA released a statement saying the agency "expected this review, appreciates the level of detail it provides and is evaluating the data and results carefully."

"Based upon the earlier IG input and public feedback, NOAA has already taken action to improve policies, management processes and internal controls of the fund," NOAA said.

'Why aren't they in jail'?

The reaction of others Thursday was very different.

"My question is, why are these people not in jail?" said attorney Stephen Ouellette, who maintains an Atlantic Coast fishing and maritime practice and began documenting violations of individual rights and high seas police excesses in letters to Congress dating back a decade.

"There're not very nice people, are they?" said Lawrence Ciulla, president of the Gloucester Seafood Display Auction, the family business that keys the fishing port economy in Gloucester.

"This latest in a series of reports by the Inspector General appears to be yet another vindication of allegations the industry has been making for several years, namely that NOAA enforcement agents and general counsel are perversely incentivized to seek fines and forfeitures grossly disproportionate to relatively minor or technical violations of complex and ever changing regulations," said auction defense attorney Paul Muniz. 

Congressman John Tierney said yesterday he intends to introduce legislation to prevent future misuse of the NOAA Asset Forfeiture Fund and support fishermen who have been cleared of wrongful allegations by NOAA.

"Today, we received further evidence of the NOAA's misuse of authority," Tierney said. "It is essential that we end this culture of no accountability at NOAA and take the appropriate steps to ensure fairness and economic stability for our fishing community."

NOAA police 'slush fund'

Delegate Madeleine Bordallo of Guam, who chairs a fisheries subcommittee of the House Commerce Committee and had the gavel on March 3 when Zinser said under oath that Jones had authorized a mass document shredding, said she views the audit as spotlighting a NOAA enforcement "slush fund."

In her statement, she said the asset forfeiture account "was never meant to be a slush fund for bureaucrats to go on a spending spree with a limitless credit card — and it is of the utmost importance that NOAA establish transparent guidelines for how this fund can be used."

Still to come from Zinser is a report on specific cases and the follow up on the reported document shredding.

The Asset Forfeiture Fund — built with fines paid by fishermen for alleged violations of NOAA regulatory mandates — was "more an abstract concept than a tangible entity within NOAA," the new audit found.

So extensive was the problem that KPMG's contract with the IG's office expired before the global accounting firm could begin identifying specific irregularities, Zinser's summary indicated.

The results were seen Thursday as another powerful vindication for fishermen and others in the industry, who for years had complained to Congress and the NOAA hierarchy about abuse of authority, grudge-settling and harassment on the part of agents--all to no avail.

Probe started here

The Inspector General's Office began a national investigation one year ago in Gloucester and elsewhere in Massachusetts, and reported in January that NOAA police, primarily criminal specialists hired by Jones working in a field that is largely administrative, had wrongly treated bland oversights in reporting as if they were criminal conspiracies.

The worst excesses were found in the Gloucester-based law and police sections, from which the entire New England and Mid-Atlantic states are governed.

The turning point came last year (2009) after the No. 1 target of the police and legal offices here in Gloucester announced a third effort to punish the Gloucester Seafood Display Auction, which had refused to accede in two earlier cases.

Instead, after NOAA announced a 53-count allegation against the No. 1 sales platform for fish caught in the Gulf of Maine, its advocates — especially state Rep. Ann-Margaret Ferrante and Sen. Bruce Tarr — organized a plea for intervention from the leadership of the state legislature to halt the agents' "vindictive" law enforcement.

The cries for relief brought the congressional delegation into action, and that pressure ultimately pushed NOAA's Lubchenco to call for the Commerce Department's Inspector General to step in.

Under the administrative law system used against the fishing industry, the NOAA administrator serves as the appeals judge for cases tried in the Coast Guard administrative law system. And in April 2009, Lubchenco upheld a finding of her predecessor at the top of NOAA against the auction, despite its having won a dismissal at trial.

That finding by Lubchenco gave her regional fisheries police and litigators the material to claim the auction was facing a punitive shutdown at the hands of the federal agency.

Gloucester agent-in-charge Andy Cohen leaked information to the Boston Globe that, because of the new charges, the auction was facing temporary shutdown. But with the auction case in court, no shutdown ever occurred. and U.S. District Judge Douglas Woodlock chastised Cohen for his actions."
 
......................
............. 
  
Feb. 2011, CBS News gives some air time to scandals at NOAA Fisheries Management. Unfortunately, since CBS "put this piece in the can, the Secretary of Commerce has reneged on his pledge to review previous fines and has severely limited the Special Master's scope of remedies."

2/17/2011, "CBS News takes NOAA Fisheries Management to the woodshed"
"Wow! What a nice job by CBS News, Armen Keteyian, and Katie Couric. On 16 February, CBS News devoted some four minutes to an investigative piece into the scandal that should have rocked NOAA and the Obama administration last fall....

CBS addressed the NOAA Law Enforcement "Shredding Party" where the director of
  • NOAA's Office of Law Enforcement shredded some 70-80% of his documents before the IG ever got to see them....
CBS showed a clip of [Republican] Senator Grassley, who said, "I want to make sure that heads roll...because in a bureaucracy, if heads don't roll, you don't change behavior."
  • Nicely said, Senator, but no heads have rolled and apparently none will.
Nobody has been punished at all. There will be no change in behavior."...
..........................................

"Fishing jobs are gone; NOAA jobs are not. The number of regulators and observers assigned to each fisherman has increased dramatically."

Sept. 2011, New England fishermen begged Obama for help via full page newspaper ad, hoping to catch his attention during his Martha's Vineyard stay. They received zero response.

9/22/2011, "Death of an Industry: The President's Impoverishment of America's Fishermen," American Thinker, Mike Johnson

"While Obama vacationed on Martha's Vineyard last year, "the fishermen of New England ran a full-page ad in the Vineyard Gazette titled "Mr. President, We Need Your Help." The fishermen came to the Vineyard in their boats and paraded in the harbor to emphasize their plight. The American Thinker ran a piece on the events. 

The ad was in the form of a letter from Russell Sherman, the captain of the fishing vessel Lady Jane out of Gloucester, MA. The letter was well-written, elegant in its simplicity and comprehensive in its content, befitting Captain Sherman's Harvard education. It read in part:


"My business is only one of hundreds facing extinction. While there will be a small handful of "winners" under these new rules [Catch Shares] [eff. 5/1/10], the vast majority of us will be losers. And when we "losers" are forced out, jobs will be lost, coastal communities gutted, and crucial commercial fishing infrastructure gone forever. ...

Mr. President, we desperately need your leadership."... 

How much help did the fishermen get from the president? None! Nada! Not even an acknowledgement of their efforts. Not even a receipt from the White House for the copy of the letter they sent directly to the president by "Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested."... 


The heavy-handed regulatory management continues, as shown by a recent independent review by Preston Pate. Fishing jobs are gone; NOAA jobs are not. The number of regulators and observers assigned to each fisherman has increased dramatically. Needless to say, this is not the help the fishermen were seeking. 

The lawsuit brought by the fishermen based on NOAA exceeding their mandate in imposing catch shares has been rejected based on NOAA having the authority to do just about whatever they please. See Dr. Briand Rothschild's "Fish, the Intent of Congress, and Jobs" and the related American Thinker piece. 

Catch allocations, the key to successful fishing under catch shares, remain extremely low because of the government's uncertainty in its science. See the Massachusetts Marine Fisheries Institute (MFI) study report....


Fishing as a way of life has endured for four centuries along the coast of New England. Turning the fisheries into a commodities-based enterprise is tantamount to

  • the destruction of the fishing community and its culture."
....................... 

Comment: As described, in late summer 2011, New England fishermen chipped in on a full page ad begging Obama for help and got zero results. If you thought Obama was going to respond to abused New England fishermen or that he could ever be a "leader" of anything except ginning up hatred, you're seriously disconnected from reality. Not that voting Republican through 2014 would've meant better results. (Hence the reason for Trump in 2016): "The mistreatment of fishermen has been independent of the party in power, although Obama has exacerbated the problem by ceding NOAA to the environmentalists with the appointment of Dr. Lubchenco."

The entire globalist political class is America "last:" open borders, massive so-called free trade deals (investor protection rackets), endless neocon foreign wars paid for by US taxpayers, endless flow of US made weapons to every human being in violent foreign hell holes, and an endless stream into US neighborhoods of "refugees" from violent cultures produced by endless foreign wars. 



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