http://www.zerohedge.com/fullrss2.xml/As%20The%20Hill%20reports%2C%20Clinton%20has%2046%20percent%20support%20among%20voters%20nationwide%20while%20Trump%20has%2039%20percent%20support%2C%20according%20to%20the%20poll.%20Last%20week%27s%20poll%20showed%20both%20candidates%20tied%20with%2042%20percent%20following%20the%20Republican%20National%20Convention.%20%20Clinton%27s%204-point%20bounce%20following%20the%20convention%20is%20similar%20to%20those%20President%20Obama%20received%20in%202012%20and%202008%2C%20but%20falls%20short%20of%20the%20convention%20bounce%20her%20husband%20saw%20in%201992. en WaPo Reports Kushner Sought "Secret" Back-Channel With Moscow, Admits It's Normal Practice http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/wapo-reports-kushner-sought-secret-back-channel-moscow-admits-its-normal-practice <p>Looks like <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/amid-russia-crisis-trump-prepares-war-room-big-white-house-changes">we spoke too soon.</a> The holiday-weekend Trump bombshell has arrived courtesy of <a href="http://https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/russian-ambassador-told-moscow-that-kushner-wanted-secret-communications-channel-with-kremlin/2017/05/26/520a14b4-422d-11e7-9869-bac8b446820a_story.html?tid=sm_fb&amp;utm_term=.e227d918ce1d">The Washington Post.</a> This time, the paper is<strong> reporting that Jared Kushner, the president&rsquo;s son-in-law and one of his closest advisors, discussed the possibility of setting up a secure communications channel between the Trump transition team and the Kremlin with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak.</strong></p> <p>The scene was set earlier in the week when <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/jared-kushner-under-fbi-scrutiny-russia-probe-nbc">NBC reported on Thursday</a> that <strong>Kushner is now &ldquo;under FBI scrutiny&rdquo; </strong>before explaining that he&rsquo;s not an official target in the investigation.</p> <p>And now, <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/russian-ambassador-told-moscow-that-kushner-wanted-secret-communications-channel-with-kremlin/2017/05/26/520a14b4-422d-11e7-9869-bac8b446820a_story.html?tid=sm_fb&amp;utm_term=.8106018f9485">WaPo reports,</a> according to the anonymous US officials, sensitive information &#39;incriminating Kushner&#39; was intercepted by US intelligence agencies when Kislyak relayed the details of the discussion to his superiors in Moscow.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/20172605Kushner.JPG"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/20172605Kushner_0.JPG" style="width: 500px; height: 332px;" /></a></p> <p>At first brush, the report appears damning: <em>If accurate, <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/russian-ambassador-told-moscow-that-kushner-wanted-secret-communications-channel-with-kremlin/2017/05/26/520a14b4-422d-11e7-9869-bac8b446820a_story.html?tid=sm_fb&amp;utm_term=.8106018f9485">WaPo </a>has unearthed actual evidence of collusion between a senior Trump associated and the Russians,</em> one might think.</p> <p>But it&rsquo;s important to keep in mind two crucial facts that <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/russian-ambassador-told-moscow-that-kushner-wanted-secret-communications-channel-with-kremlin/2017/05/26/520a14b4-422d-11e7-9869-bac8b446820a_story.html?tid=sm_fb&amp;utm_term=.8106018f9485">WaPo </a>decided to bury further in their &quot;reporting.&quot;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>First, this alleged discussion occurred during a meeting at Trump Tower in early December, <strong>nearly a<u> month after Trump&rsquo;s upset victory</u> over Hillary Clinton.&nbsp; </strong>The investigations being led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, the House and the Senate are <strong>focused on uncovering evidence of collusion between Trump associates and the Russian government during the campaign.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>And second, if it weren&rsquo;t for the implications <em>(that this is evidence of collusion between a close Trump associated and Moscow)</em>, <strong>this would be a non-story</strong>, <a href="http://https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/russian-ambassador-told-moscow-that-kushner-wanted-secret-communications-channel-with-kremlin/2017/05/26/520a14b4-422d-11e7-9869-bac8b446820a_story.html?tid=sm_fb&amp;utm_term=.e227d918ce1d">as WaPo readily admits, 16 paragraphs deep:</a> <strong><em>&ldquo;<u>It is common for senior advisers of a newly elected president to be in contact with foreign leaders and officials</u>. But new administrations are generally cautious in their handling of interactions with Moscow, which U.S. intelligence agencies have accused of waging an unprecedented campaign to interfere in last year&rsquo;s presidential race and help elect Trump.&rdquo;</em></strong></p> </blockquote> <p><u><strong>So, to summarize </strong></u>- after Trump won the election (thus not before the election and not showing any election-tampering collusion), Kushner began discussions with the US representative of another world super-power to set up the back-channel-communications that are standard when any new president is elected.</p> <p>If that&#39;s the best the media has for a long weekend, then perhaps, just perhaps, we have jumped the shark in terms of &#39;damning&#39; leaked intercepts? Or perhaps the assumption is that the average WaPo reader will not reach the 16th paragraph, merely content with the headline confirmation of their own bias?</p> <p><em>In a separate story published Friday evening, <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2017/05/26/senate-intelligence-committee-requests-trump-campaign-documents/">Wapo reported that the <strong>Senate Intelligence Committee</strong></a><strong> has asked President Trump&rsquo;s political organization to gather and produce all documents, emails and phone records going back to his campaign&rsquo;s launch in June 2015. </strong>The development is notable because it&#39;s the first time that any Congressional investigators have requested documents from the Trump campaign.</em></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="897" height="496" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170526%2B_kush.jpg?1495843217" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/wapo-reports-kushner-sought-secret-back-channel-moscow-admits-its-normal-practice#comments Business Donald Trump Donald Trump presidential campaign FBI Federal Bureau of Investigation Jared Kushner Mike Pence NBC Politics Politics of the United States Presidency of Donald Trump Presidential transition of Donald Trump Russian government Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections Senate Senate Intelligence Committee Sergey Kislyak Trump family Trump Tower Trump Tower wiretapping allegations U.S. intelligence United States Sat, 27 May 2017 00:02:17 +0000 Tyler Durden 596783 at http://www.zerohedge.com Western Washington University Hosts Workshop On How To "Reduce The Impact Of White Privilege" http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/university-hosts-workshop-how-reduce-impact-your-white-privilege <p>As part of its Campus Equity and Inclusion Forums, the enlightened faculty of Western Washington University have decided to host a workshop that aims to <strong>"reduce the impact of white privilege on social and academic relations"</strong>...because the best way to address racial barriers (real or imagined) is to host a workshop that targets individuals based purely on their race.</p> <p>The workshop series, highlighted by <a href="https://www.thecollegefix.com/post/32808/">The College Fix</a> earlier today, will be hosted by history professor Randall Jimerson who presumably has a lot of personal atoning to do for his white skin.&nbsp; Jimerson noted that while the seminar is open to everybody, it’s<strong> especially helpful for white folks who need to learn "how to reduce the expression and effects of their white privilege."</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>“Most people of color are aware of the existence of ‘white privilege,’ whether or not they have applied this term to the disparity between their experiences and those of white people,”</strong> he said via email. “Thus, I assume that the main focus will be on helping white participants to understand, explore, and accept (or reject) the concepts embedded in this phrase.”</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“I hope that the conversation will then move to <strong>ideas about how to reduce the impact of ‘white privilege’ in our daily interactions with other people, </strong>and in our consciousness of race and other socially-constructed concepts.”</p> </blockquote> <p>Thankfully, Jimerson noted that racism among white people is <strong>not based on "biology, but only on social constructs historically designed to privilege ‘white’ people over all others"</strong>...which means all white people can be cured of their illness through sensitivity training at any number of liberal bastions of higher education around the country...so it's a good news day.</p> <p>Meanwhile, asked whether the country has made any progress at all on race relations over the past 50 years, Jimerson said he's encouraged that public schools are no longer segregated but is worried by the fact that Trump has filled his cabinet with a bunch of white supremacists.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>“As a white male—even though I have a sister-in-law, a niece, and two nephews who would be described as persons of color—I do not think that I can provide a clear answer to this question,” he said. “The nature of race relations, and how this has changed in the past 50 years, is something that I can only sense indirectly.”</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“Although I think that the United States has made progress in some aspects of race relations—such as overt or legal segregation—recent evidence suggest we have a long way to go,” he added. “These forms of evidence range from the racist attacks on former President Barack Obama, to documented incidents of <strong>excessive police violence towards people of color, to the increase of white supremacist organizations, and the only slightly veiled racism of many members of the Trump administration.</strong> These developments are seriously troubling for anyone who values concepts of fairness, equality, and social justice.”</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>The country that poor professor is living in sounds just awful...he might be better off just abandoning it and moving to some other country that is more tolerant.</strong></p> <p>And here's your opportunity to meet the forum organizers:</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/-uAQ_dvs0vk?ecver=2" width="600" height="337" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="361" height="226" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017.05.26%20-%20White%20Priv.JPG?1495816875" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/university-hosts-workshop-how-reduce-impact-your-white-privilege#comments Barack Obama Critical race theory Discrimination Identity politics Jimerson Politics Post-structuralism Privilege Race and society Racism Social constructionism Social Issues Trump Administration Western Washington Western Washington University White People White privilege White supremacy Fri, 26 May 2017 23:40:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 596736 at http://www.zerohedge.com Pat Buchanan: "After The Confederates, Who's Next?" http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/pat-buchanan-after-confederates-whos-next <p><a href="http://buchanan.org/blog/confederates-whos-next-127112"><em>Authored by Patrick Buchanan via Buchanan.org,</em></a></p> <p><em>On Sept. 1, 1864, Union forces under Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman, victorious at Jonesborough, burned Atlanta and began the March to the Sea where Sherman&rsquo;s troops looted and pillaged farms and towns all along the 300-mile road to Savannah.</em></p> <p><em>Captured in the Confederate defeat at Jonesborough was William Martin Buchanan of Okolona, Mississippi, who was transferred by rail to the Union POW stockade at Camp Douglas, Illinois.</em></p> <p><strong>By the standards of modernity, my great-grandfather, fighting to prevent the torching of Georgia&rsquo;s capital, was engaged in a criminal and immoral cause. </strong>And &ldquo;Uncle Billy&rdquo; Sherman was a liberator.</p> <p>Under President Grant, Sherman took command of the Union army and ordered Gen. Philip Sheridan, who had burned the Shenandoah Valley to starve Virginia into submission, to corral the Plains Indians on reservations.</p> <p><strong>It is in dispute as to whether Sheridan said, &ldquo;The only good Indian is a dead Indian.&rdquo; </strong>There is no dispute as to the contempt Sheridan had for the Indians, killing their buffalo to deprive them of food.</p> <p>Today, <strong>great statues stand in the nation&rsquo;s capital, along with a Sherman and a Sheridan circle, to honor these most ruthless of generals in that bloodiest of wars that cost 620,000 American lives.</strong></p> <p>Yet, across the South and even in border states like Kentucky, Maryland and Missouri, one may find statues of Confederate soldiers in town squares to honor the valor and sacrifices of the Southern men and boys who fought and fell in the Lost Cause.</p> <p>When the Spanish-American War broke out, President McKinley, who as a teenage soldier had fought against &ldquo;Stonewall&rdquo; Jackson in the Shenandoah and been at Antietam, bloodiest single-day battle of the Civil War, removed his hat and stood for the singing of &ldquo;Dixie,&rdquo; as Southern volunteers and former Confederate soldiers paraded through Atlanta to fight for their united country. My grandfather was in that army.</p> <p><strong>For a century, Americans lived comfortably with the honoring, North and South, of the men who fought on both sides.</strong></p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>But today&rsquo;s America is not the magnanimous country we grew up in.</strong></span></p> <p>Since the &rsquo;60s, there has arisen an ideology that holds that the Confederacy was the moral equivalent of Nazi Germany and those who fought under its battle flag should be regarded as traitors or worse.</p> <p><strong><em>Thus, in New Orleans, statues of Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederate States of America, and General Robert E. Lee were just pulled down. And a drive is underway to take down the statue of Andrew Jackson, hero of the Battle of New Orleans and president of the United States, which stands in Jackson Square.</em></strong></p> <p>Why? <strong>Old Hickory was a slave owner </strong>and Indian fighter who used his presidential power to transfer the Indians of Georgia out to the Oklahoma Territory in a tragedy known as the Trail of Tears.</p> <p><em>But if Jackson, and James K. Polk, who added the Southwest and California to the United States after the Mexican-American War, were slave owners,<u><strong> so, too, were four of our first five presidents.</strong></u></em></p> <p><em>The list includes the father of our country, George Washington, the author of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson, and the author of our Constitution, James Madison.</em></p> <p><em>Not only are the likenesses of Washington and Jefferson carved on Mount Rushmore, the two Virginians are honored with two of the most magnificent monuments and memorials in Washington, D.C.</em></p> <p><u><strong>Behind this remorseless drive to blast the greatest names from America&rsquo;s past off public buildings, and to tear down their statues and monuments, is an egalitarian extremism rooted in envy and hate.</strong></u></p> <p>Among its core convictions is that spreading Christianity was a cover story for rapacious Europeans who, after discovering America, came in masses to dispossess and exterminate native peoples. &ldquo;The white race,&rdquo; wrote Susan Sontag, &ldquo;is the cancer of human history.&rdquo;</p> <p><em><strong>Today, the men we were taught to revere as the great captains, explorers, missionaries and nation-builders are seen by many as part of a racist, imperialist, genocidal enterprise, wicked men who betrayed and eradicated the peace-loving natives who had welcomed them.</strong></em></p> <p>What they blindly refuse to see is that while its sins are scarlet, as are those of all civilizations, it is the achievements of the West that are unrivaled. The West ended slavery. Christianity and the West gave birth to the idea of inalienable human rights.</p> <p>As scholar Charles Murray has written, <strong>97 percent of the world&rsquo;s most significant figures and 97 percent of the world&rsquo;s greatest achievements in the arts, architecture, literature, astrology, biology, earth sciences, physics, medicine, mathematics and technology came from the West.</strong></p> <p><u><strong>What is disheartening is not that there are haters of our civilization out there, but that there seem to be fewer defenders.</strong></u></p> <p>Of these icon-smashers it may be said: Like ISIS and Boko Haram, they can tear down statues, but these people could never build a country.</p> <p><strong>What happens, one wonders, when these Philistines discover that the seated figure in the statue, right in front of D.C.&rsquo;s Union Station, is the High Admiral of the Ocean Sea, Christopher Columbus?</strong></p> <p>Happy Memorial Day!</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="267" height="172" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170526_conf.jpg?1495824420" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/pat-buchanan-after-confederates-whos-next#comments American Civil War army Confederate States Army Confederate States of America Germany Illinois Military personnel New Orleans Oklahoma Philip Sheridan Robert E. Lee Trail of Tears Ulysses S. Grant Union Army Union Army United States Valley Campaigns War Washington D.C. William Tecumseh Sherman Fri, 26 May 2017 23:15:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 596750 at http://www.zerohedge.com "Secret" Russian Doc Influenced Comey's Hillary Probe Even Though He Knew It Was Fake: CNN http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/secret-russian-doc-influenced-comeys-hillary-probe-even-though-he-knew-it-was-fake-c <p>Two days ago we highlighted a <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/how-a-dubious-russian-document-influenced-the-fbis-handling-of-the-clinton-probe/2017/05/24/f375c07c-3a95-11e7-9e48-c4f199710b69_story.html?utm_term=.c82e99badafd">Washington Post</a> story which suggested that <strong>Comey only decided to host his now-infamous July 5th press conference</strong>, the one where he said that Hillary was <strong>"extremely careless"</strong> in her handling of classified information but that he would not pursue charges, <strong>after reviewing a "dubious Russian document" which alleged that former Attorney General Loretta Lynch personally assured someone within the Clinton campaign that the FBI's investigation wouldn't "go too far"</strong> (see "<a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-24/dubious-russian-document-influenced-clinton-investigation-disclosures-wapo">'Secret' Russian Document Influenced Comey's Probe Into Hillary Clinton: Report</a>").&nbsp; </p> <p>This was WaPo's salacious title:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/26/2017.05.26%20-%20WaPo_0.JPG" alt="Wapo" width="600" height="133" /></p> </blockquote> <p><strong>The point of Wapo's story was to provide some 'tangible evidence' that Russia had in some way definitively influenced the outcome of the 2016 election.</strong> That said, an unfortunate side-effect was that it made Comey and the entire FBI look completely incompetent for being duped by some fake Russian memo.</p> <p>Of course, we can only assume that Wapo casting Comey and the entire FBI as a bunch of total buffoons didn't sit well with some agents.&nbsp; Therefore, its only reasonable to assume that one of those slighted agents, maybe even Comey himself, decided to correct the record by informing the mainstream media outlets that the FBI knew the Russian intel was fake all along.</p> <p>And here's where the story gets really fun.&nbsp;<strong> CNN, the NYT and all the other mainstream outlets followed Wapo's lead on the "dubious Russian document" story and they couldn't simply retract it because that would (i) be embarrassing and (ii) invalidate their 'proof' that Russia had influenced the election by conning Comey into doing something he otherwise would not have done.</strong></p> <p>All of which brings us to today's comical headline from <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/26/politics/james-comey-fbi-investigation-fake-russian-intelligence/index.html">CNN</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/26/2017.05.26%20-%20CNN_0.JPG" alt="CNN" width="600" height="75" /></p> </blockquote> <p>Yes, you read that right, CNN effectively argues that Russia influenced Comey by not influencing Comey.&nbsp; Here is the thought process from CNN:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>Then-FBI Director James Comey knew that a critical piece of information relating to the investigation into Hillary Clinton's email was fake -- created by Russian intelligence -- but he feared that if it became public it would undermine the probe and the Justice Department itself, according to multiple officials with knowledge of the process.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>As a result, Comey acted unilaterally last summer to publicly declare the investigation over -- without consulting then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch -- while at the same time stating that Clinton had been "extremely careless" in her handling of classified information. His press conference caused a firestorm of controversy and drew criticism from both Democrats and Republicans.</p> </blockquote> <p>It's a win-win really...CNN still gets to 'confirm' that the Russians influenced the election and Comey and the FBI look slightly less incompetent.&nbsp; </p> <p>Of course, <strong>in order to believe any of this utter non-sense you have to completely erase from your memory that inconvenient meeting between Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Bill Clinton that took place on the Phoenix tarmac on June 29th...just 6 days before Comey made his announcement</strong>...because surely that couldn't have possible tainted Comey's opinion of the DOJ's independence, right?</p> <p>For those who "do not recall" this event...here is a reminder:&nbsp; </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/sRWDP-PWunE?ecver=2" width="600" height="337" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Of course, <strong>you would also have to completely dismiss Comey's testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee in which he directly confirmed our thesis above, namely that Lynch's meeting with Bill Clinton was, in fact, the reason he determined that the Justice Department couldn't "credibly" end the Hillary Clinton email investigation.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>“A number of things had gone on which I can’t talk about yet, that made me worry that the department leadership could not credibly complete the investigation and decline prosecution without grievous damage to the American people’s confidence in the justice system."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“And then the capper was — and I’m not picking on the attorney general, Loretta Lynch, who I like very much — <strong>but her meeting with President Clinton on that airplane was the capper for me, and I then said, you know what, the department cannot, by itself, credibly end this."</strong></p> </blockquote> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/tSMfBeyd2bM?ecver=2" width="600" height="337" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>But sure, CNN, it wasn't Lynch's meeting with Bill Clinton 6 days prior that forced Comey's hand...it was a fake Russian memo that Comey knew was fake but feared would be leaked to the public that undermined the DOJ's credibility.&nbsp;<strong> Can anyone within CNN really believe their own story?&nbsp; Really?</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="447" height="312" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/cnn%20fake%20news_4.JPG?1495837785" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/secret-russian-doc-influenced-comeys-hillary-probe-even-though-he-knew-it-was-fake-c#comments Bill Clinton Comey Department of Justice Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation Dismissal of James Comey DOJ FBI Federal Bureau of Investigation Federal Bureau of Investigation Government Hillary Clinton Hillary Clinton email controversy James Comey Judiciary Committee Justice Department Loretta Lynch Politics Russian intelligence Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections Testimony United States Fri, 26 May 2017 22:50:32 +0000 Tyler Durden 596782 at http://www.zerohedge.com Amid Russia Crisis, Trump Prepares "War Room", "Big White House Changes", Loss Of Twitter http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/amid-russia-crisis-trump-prepares-war-room-big-white-house-changes <p>In lieu of the Friday night "Trump bombshell" deliverable from the NYT-WaPo complex, today it was <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-warroom-idUSKBN18M2FU">Reuters</a>' and the <a href="https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-eyeing-white-house-shakeup-1495831679">Wall Street Journal</a>'s turn to lay out the suspenseful weekend reads, previewing major potential upcoming changes to the Trump administration. </p> <p>First, <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-warroom-idUSKBN18M2FU">according to Reuters</a>, Trump's top advisors are preparing to <strong>establish a "war room" to combat negative reports and mounting questions about communication between Russia</strong>.&nbsp; Steve Bannon and Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, both senior advisors to the president, will be involved in the new messaging effort, which also aims to push Trump's policy agenda and schedule more rallies with supporters. This "most aggressive effort yet" to push back against allegations involving Russia and his presidential campaign, will launch once Trump returns from his overseas trip. </p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Upon Trump’s return, the administration will add experienced political professionals and possibly more lawyers to handle the Russia probe, which has gained new urgency since the Justice Department appointed a special counsel to head the investigation, the sources said.</p> </blockquote> <p>On Thursday, NBC News reported that Kushner, who held several meetings with Russian officials following the election, is himself a focus of the probe, making him the first current White House official to be caught up in it, although Kushner, who is Trump's son-in-law, has not been accused of any wrongdoing. On Friday afternoon, <a href="http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_TRUMP_RUSSIA_PROBE?SITE=AP&amp;SECTION=HOME&amp;TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&amp;CTIME=2017-05-26-17-19-38">the AP quoted </a>Kushner's lawyer that if the FBI wants to talk to Jared Kushner about his Russian contacts, he stands ready to talk to federal investigators as well as Congress about his contacts and his role in Donald Trump's 2016 campaign.</p> <p>FBI probe aside, Kushner and Bannon will work to step up the White House’s strategic messaging. Trump’s former campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski - who has been seen in the White House recently - is also expected to be part of the messaging operation according to Reuters. Bannon and White House chief of staff Reince Priebus have been laying the groundwork for the messaging operation this week, sources told the news outlet. </p> <p>“Since the firing of Comey, that really exposed the fact that the White House in its current structure ... is not prepared for really a one-front war, let alone a two-front war,” a person who remains in regular communication with the White House told Reuters. “They need to have a structure in place that allows them to stay focused, [while] also truly fighting back on these attacks and these leaks.”</p> <p>The "war room" is just one of the steps Trump and his advisers plan to take to respond to the probe into Russia's attempts to influence the 2016 presidential election. Trump reportedly hired Marc Kasowitz as his personal attorney earlier this week to represent him and guide him through the Russia investigations following the appointment of former FBI director Robert Mueller as special counsel to oversee the Russia investigation. The president and his team are putting together a legal team of prominent lawyers who can help him best proceed through the questions surrounding whether his campaign colluded with Moscow.</p> <p>Quoted by Reuters, Christopher Ruddy, chief executive of Newsmax Media and a Trump friend, said he expects the president will travel more when he returns from overseas and encouraged the White House to focus on issues that pump up his base voters. “From my perspective, I think the president should be doing the stuff that he does best, which is talking about his agenda: jobs, trade and security,” Ruddy said. </p> <p>Republicans in Congress are aching for Trump to leave the distraction of the Russia probe aside and focus on legislation and nominating officials to fill the hundreds of vacant slots across the administration. “What we really want to be able to do is tend to our business,” Mike Rounds, a Republican Senator from South Dakota, told Reuters. "We've got a healthcare bill we're working on. We've got tax reform that we think is important.”</p> <p>Earlier on Friday, <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/boehner-bashes-trump-everything-hes-done-complete-disaster">former House Speaker John Boehner </a>said that Trump's time in office has been a "complete disaster" aside from foreign affairs. Boehner told an energy conference he supported efforts to "get to the bottom" of any potential interactions between Trump associates and the Russian government but described any calls to impeach Trump as the purview of "the crazy left-wing Democratic colleagues of mine."</p> <p>* * * </p> <p>Second, in a separate <a href="https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-eyeing-white-house-shakeup-1495831679">but similar report from the WSJ, </a>the paper writes that Trump is "actively discussing major changes" in the White House, <strong>including a shakeup of his senior team</strong>, after spending much of his free time during his overseas trip weighing the Russia investigation and the political crisis it poses for him. A flurry of meetings devoted to White House operations are scheduled for next week, officials said, and sparks are expected to fly. </p> <p>While this isn't the first time a major shake up around Trump was announced as imminent, recalls <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-14/hes-angry-everyone-trump-said-plan-huge-reboot-priebus-bannon-spicer-could-may-be-fi">Axios reporting </a>two weeks ago that an "angry" Trump was planning a huge reboot, and that Priebus, Bannon and Spicer could be fired, this time the urgency is far greater, and the WSJ reports that other revisions on the table include a <strong>new filter of the president’s social-media habit and fewer scheduled press briefings</strong>, officials and allies said. The anticipated moves are the latest sign of how the investigation into Russia’s interference in last year’s election, and the circumstances of the president’s firing of FBI Director James Comey, is defining the new administration. “Everything is in play,” one Trump adviser said.</p> <p>The biggest change may be that Trump is about to lose his twitter privileges for good: </p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>One major change under consideration would <strong>vet the president’s social media posts through a team of lawyers</strong>, who would decide if any needed to be adjusted or curtailed.<strong> The idea, said one of Mr. Trump’s advisers, is to create a system so that tweets “don’t go from the president’s mind out to the universe.” </strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Some of Mr. Trump’s tweets—from hinting that he may have taped conversations with Mr. Comey to suggesting without any evidence that former President Barack Obama wire-tapped Trump Tower—have opened him to criticism and at times confounded his communications team. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Trump aides have long attempted to rein in his tweeting, and some saw any type of legal vetting as difficult to implement. “I would be shocked if he would agree to that,”</strong> said Barry Bennett, a former Trump campaign aide.</p> </blockquote> <p>It also appears that Sean Spicer is on his way out:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Other changes under discussion include removing communications director Mike Dubke and installing Sarah Sanders as the main spokesman instead of Mr. Spicer. Another consideration is scaling back on daily press briefings. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Mr. Spicer, one of the only practicing Catholics among Mr. Trump’s senior staff, was a last-minute scratch from the president’s meeting with Pope Francis this week, a move that shocked some senior administration officials. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Mr. Spicer and Ms. Sanders didn’t respond to further questions on any coming changes.</p> </blockquote> <p>In a a contradiction from the Reuters report, the WSJ notes that neither Bannon nor Kushner themselves are safe.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Mr. Trump consulted Mr. Kushner on the firing of Mr. Comey, officials say. Mr. Bannon opposed the move and was absent from the inner circle who advised the president on the move. Mr. Bannon’s critics say they suspect him of leaking to the press and regard him as too much of a firebrand to massage the president’s agenda through Washington’s traditional processes. Mr. Kushner’s detractors in the West Wing refer to him as the “young princeling.”</p> </blockquote> <p>But most interesting is the alleged emerging tension between Trump and his Goldman advisors: "Some Trump advisers have also questioned the judgment of communications officials, citing as an example the rollout of a tax-plan outline in April that featured Goldman Sachs alumnae Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury secretary, and Gary Cohn, the National Economic Council director. </p> <p>“The left is automatically going to say the tax plan is tailored to the rich and to Wall Street. And we just gave them an image of the rich and of Wall Street,” one Trump former campaign official said.</p> <p>In an amusing tangent, the WSJ also points out that Trump’s return to Washington will mark the end of a period which, White House staffers said, "brought some relief from the hectic pace of the news surrounding the administration and the Russia investigation. Some noted that it gave them a rare time to eat dinner at home."</p> <p>* * * </p> <p>While it could be just another red herring, it is likely that Trump's return may unleash the political chaos that dominated the news cycle for most of May. Alternatively, if Trump is serious about overhauling his communication strategy, his inner circle of advisors - especially those originating from Goldman, as well as cracking down on non-stop leaks, then there just is some hope that the relentless news bombardment may fade, if only for a few summer weeks. One can always hope, even if the odds are stacked very much against.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="640" height="360" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/bannon.kushner.jpg?1495838366" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/amid-russia-crisis-trump-prepares-war-room-big-white-house-changes#comments Alt-right American people of German descent Barack Obama Business Congress Department of Justice Donald Trump Donald Trump presidential campaign FBI Federal Bureau of Investigation goldman sachs Goldman Sachs Jared Kushner Kushner National Economic Council NBC Politics Presidency of Donald Trump Reince Priebus Reuters Russian government Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections Steve Bannon Trump Administration Trump family Twitter Twitter United States White House White House Fri, 26 May 2017 22:43:20 +0000 Tyler Durden 596781 at http://www.zerohedge.com The War On Workers, Phase II - Truth Has Become A Liability http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/war-workers-phase-ii-truth-has-become-liability <p><a href="http://economicprism.com/the-attack-on-workers-phase-ii/"><em>Authored by MN Gordon via EconomicPrism.com,</em></a></p> <p><strong>It&rsquo;s been a long row to hoe for most workers during the first 17 years of the new millennium.&nbsp; </strong>The soil&rsquo;s been hard and rocky.&nbsp; The rewards for one&rsquo;s toils have been bleak.</p> <p>For many, laboriously dragging a push plow&rsquo;s dull blade across the land has hardly scratched enough of a rut in the ground to plant a pitiful row of string beans.&nbsp; What&rsquo;s more, any bean sprouts that broke through the stony earth were quickly strangled out by seasonal weeds.&nbsp; Those &lsquo;green shoots&rsquo; that persisted bore pods that dried out on the vine before maturity.</p> <p>This has been the common experience of the typical 21st century American worker, thus far. <strong>Countless, stories of labors with no fruits have been shared at bowling alleys across the Bible Belt. </strong>&nbsp;There are also hard numbers that backup these woeful tales.</p> <p>Just this week, for example, Sentier Research released a <a href="http://www.sentierresearch.com/reports/Sentier_Household_Income_Trends_Report_April2017_05_23_17.pdf">new report</a> showing that<strong> after scratching and clawing the earth day after day, median household income has finally surpassed a level last seen in January 2000.</strong>&nbsp; In other words, living standards for the typical family are now a smidge higher than they were at the turn of the century.&nbsp; <a href="https://finance.yahoo.com/news/family-income-now-highest-since-2002-172210328.html">Rick Newman</a> offers several details:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;Sentier calculates a monthly index representing median household income, based on Census Bureau data, starting at 100 in January of 2000. &nbsp;Since it&rsquo;s an index, it&rsquo;s adjusted for inflation and represents the real earning power of a typical family. &nbsp;The index drifted slightly above 100 a few times leading up to the 2008 financial meltdown, but mostly went sideways during the George W. Bush administration. &nbsp;Then it plunged beginning in 2009, with a long recovery beginning in 2011.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;The latest reading in the Sentier index is 100.9, the first time it&rsquo;s been above 100 since 2008. That number matches the previous high, from 2002, which means family income will hit a new high if it rises in May.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <h3><u><strong>Rip Van Winkle</strong></u></h3> <p><em><strong>Good grief.&nbsp; What took so darn long?</strong></em></p> <p>A lot has changed while the typical worker was running in place for the last decade and a half.&nbsp; In fact, Rip Van Winkle would hardly recognize the world that remains after these lost years.&nbsp;<strong> Good manners, good ethics, and good people have mostly gone the way of the dodo bird.</strong></p> <p><strong>For one, politics at home has gone stark raving mad.&nbsp; </strong>Debbie Wasserman Shultz.&nbsp; Jim Comey.&nbsp; Barry Obama.&nbsp; Susan Rice.&nbsp; John Podesta.&nbsp; Hillary Clinton.&nbsp; Anthony Weiner.&nbsp; Barney Frank.&nbsp; John Burton.&nbsp; Harry Reid.&nbsp; Chuck Schumer.&nbsp; Ted Kennedy&rsquo;s ghost.&nbsp; And on and on.&nbsp; And so on and so forth.</p> <p>Years ago, when upright character was an expectation, these malevolent dingle berries would have been painted with tar and rolled in a dirty chicken coop full of feathers, among other things.&nbsp; Nowadays, they get extended lordship, pensions, and countless hours of paid vacation.</p> <p><strong>What to make of it?</strong></p> <p><strong>The federal government &ndash; and many state and local governments &ndash; appear to be self-destructing in grand fashion.</strong>&nbsp; Federal agencies and politicians are stabbing each other and the President in the back at a clip last witnessed in Moscow during the twilight of the Soviet Union.</p> <p><u><em><strong>At the same time, the truth has become a liability.&nbsp;</strong></em></u> Specifically, sharing the dirty truth has become hazardous to one&rsquo;s life expectancy.&nbsp; For the ruling class has become desperate to keep the world tilted in its favor.&nbsp;<strong> They&rsquo;ll go to any length to keep money and power flowing towards them.</strong></p> <h3><u><strong>The Attack on Workers, Phase II</strong></u></h3> <p>No doubt, President Trump&rsquo;s a ghastly fellow.&nbsp; But he&rsquo;s not nearly as ghastly as the headlines make him out to be.&nbsp; There are much worse haircuts out there.&nbsp; Plus <strong>he&rsquo;s facing an unwinnable battle.</strong></p> <p><strong>All of Congress wants Trump to fail and are doing everything they can to ensure this happens.&nbsp;</strong> Even his most partial efforts to redirect some of the failing social programs that are bankrupting the country are greeted with a disjointed and frenetic mass hysteria.&nbsp; Rational contemplation and pragmatic decision making has given way to foaming mouths and erratic neck convulsions.</p> <p>Should we be surprised?&nbsp; Maybe this is the way things always were; only now they&rsquo;ve been ratcheted up several notches.&nbsp; For instance, two generations ago Nixon era Treasury Secretary William Simon let the cat out of the bag:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&ldquo;One of the things I learned during my tenure in Washington is that the civic book picture of government in operation is completely inaccurate.&nbsp; The idea that our elected officials take part in a careful decision-making process&mdash;monitoring events, reviewing options, responsibly selecting policies&mdash;has almost no connection with reality.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;A more accurate image would be that of a runaway train with the throttle stuck wide open&mdash;while the passengers and crew are living it up in the dining car.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>These days, however, the runaway train is one ridge turn from jumping the tracks.&nbsp; <strong>Alas, a stock market crash, depression, and world war will likely accompany it.&nbsp; After that the attack on worker begins in earnest.</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="256" height="157" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170526_truth.jpg?1495824084" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/war-workers-phase-ii-truth-has-become-liability#comments 2nd arrondissement of Paris Barney Frank Bureau of the Census Census Bureau Cinema of the United States Congress Fail federal government Fiction Film George W. Bush administration Green Shoots headlines James Comey Market Crash Meltdown Reality recovery Rip Van Winkle Rise: Blood Hunter Sentier Van Winkle Fri, 26 May 2017 22:25:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 596749 at http://www.zerohedge.com Trump Defies G7, Refuses To Back Climate Deal After "Controversial" Debate http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/after-controversial-debate-g7-leaders-fail-persuade-trump-back-climate-deal <p>The Group of Seven world leaders, or rather Six excluding Trump, tried to tame the US president... and failed. Which means on Saturday the group will sign off on a significantly "pared-down" statement at the close of their meeting in Sicily - an indication of deep divisions on climate change, trade and various other issues between Trump and the rest of the developed world. Pushing hard to persuade Trump to back the landmark Paris climate accord deal, after hours of talks that were described by Angela Merkel as <strong>"</strong><em>controversial</em><strong>" </strong>the G-7 leaders failed to get Trump's endorsement. </p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/1400x-1%20%283%29.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/1400x-1%20%283%29_0.jpg" width="500" height="281" /></a></p> <p>The leaders did, however, issue a joint statement on fighting terrorism, admonishing internet service providers and social media companies to "substantially increase" their efforts to rein in extremist content. According to Italy's Prime Minister and host, Paolo Gentiloni, the group was also inching closer to finding common language on trade, a controversial for Trump who has repeatedly pushed for an "America first" agenda. </p> <p><strong>But on the issue of climate, there was no breakthrough. </strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>"There is one open question, which is the U.S. position on the Paris climate accords," Gentiloni told reporters <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/us-g7-summit-idUSKBN18L2ZU">according to Reuters</a>, referring to a 2015 deal on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"All others have confirmed their total agreement on the accord." U.S. officials had signaled beforehand that Trump, who dismissed climate change as a "hoax" during his campaign, would not take a decision on the climate deal in Taormina, the cliff-top town overlooking the Mediterranean where G7 leaders met. </p> </blockquote> <p>Other leaders, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel and new French President Emmanuel Macron, had hoped to sway the president at his first major international summit.&nbsp; </p> <p>They failed, despite what Merkel described as a "controversial" climate debate and added that there was a "very intensive" exchange of views. One can only imagine. </p> <p>Speaking separately, Trump's economic adviser Gary Cohn said Trump's views on climate were "evolving" and that he would ultimately do what was best for the United States. </p> <p>* * * </p> <p>The tense summit, <strong>held at a luxury hotel that was once a Dominican monastery and base for the Nazi air force during World War Two, </strong>took place one day after Trump blasted NATO allies for spending too little on defense and described Germany's trade surplus as "very bad" in a meeting with EU officials. As noted yesterday, Trump's NATO speech shocked allies, who had been expecting him to reaffirm Washington's commitment to Article 5, the part of the military alliance's founding treaty which describes an attack on one member as an attack on all.</p> <p>Italy chose to stage the summit in Sicily to draw attention to Africa, which is 140 miles (225 km) from the island at its closest point across the Mediterranean. More than half a million migrants, most from sub-Saharan Africa, have reached Italy by boat since 2014, taking advantage of the chaos in Libya to launch their perilous crossings.</p> <p>In addition to trade and climate, drafts of the communique as of Friday were due to address topics such as migration and gender equality. The “ongoing large-scale movement” of migrants and refugees calls for “coordinated efforts,” according to a draft of the communique seen by <a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2017-05-26/g-7-leaders-agree-to-disagree-as-common-goals-cut-down-to-size">Bloomberg News</a>. </p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>“We reaffirm the sovereign rights of states to control their own borders and set clear limits on net migration levels, as key elements of their national security and economic well-being,” according to the draft. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The nations are also set to say gender equality is fundamental for human rights. The leaders also issued a separate statement on counter-terrorism efforts that called on social media companies to do more in the fight against terrorism.</p> </blockquote> <p>As the leaders attended a concert and gala dinner on Friday night, their aides worked to finalize the draft wording. "On the major theme of global trade, we are still working on the shape of the final communique, but it seems to me the direct discussions today have produced common positions that we can work on," said Gentiloni. </p> <p>The final G7 communique traditionally outlines the common positions<br /> of the member states' leaders on the economy and other global issues<br /> requiring joint action by the world’s leading powers. This year’s<br /> statement is on pace to be less than 10 pages, or less than a third the <a href="http://www.mofa.go.jp/files/000160266.pdf">32-page memo </a>signed last year in Japan, according to Bloomberg.&nbsp;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>“You<br /> can test this stuff empirically. A shorter communique tends to mean the<br /> less they actually produce by way of commitments,” John Kirton, director of the University of Toronto’s G7 Research Group, told Bloomberg. He downplayed the relative scale of divisions:</p> </blockquote> <p>“I don’t<br /> think it’s more divided than it’s ever been before,” he said, citing<br /> the 1982 summit as a failure where the issue of a Soviet gas pipeline,<br /> opposed by Ronald Reagan, divided the countries. “So they patched over<br /> some communique, but then they all ran off to their post-summit<br /> briefings and said ’we don’t agree with it, we don’t agree with it.’ So<br /> it made things worse. They kind of publicized their failure.”</p> <p>* * * </p> <p>There was one thing the group could agree on: a crackdown on the "internet abuse."</p> <p>“We will combat the misuse of the Internet by terrorists,” the statement said. The G-7 “calls for communication service providers and social media companies to substantially increase their efforts to address terrorist content.”</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="1400" height="787" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/1400x-1%20%283%29.jpg?1495829949" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/after-controversial-debate-g7-leaders-fail-persuade-trump-back-climate-deal#comments After Hours American people of German descent Angela Merkel Bloomberg News Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump Environment European Union First 100 days of Donald Trump's presidency G-7 G7 Government group of seven Group of Seven Intergovernmental organizations Italy Japan Mediterranean national security Nazi air force North Atlantic Treaty Organization Paolo Gentiloni Politics Politics Reuters Sub-Saharan Africa The Apprentice University of Toronto WWE Hall of Fame Fri, 26 May 2017 22:24:19 +0000 Tyler Durden 596766 at http://www.zerohedge.com Silicon Valley Billionaire Unveils "Air Yacht" To Deliver Food, Supplies To Desperate People In "Remote Locations" http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/silicon-valley-billionaire-will-use-air-yacht-deliver-food-supplies-desperate-people <p>In a development that&rsquo;s emblematic of the massive wealth inequality in Silicon Valley, <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/may/26/google-sergey-brin-building-largest-aircraft">the Guardian on Friday</a> revealed new details about <strong>the &quot;secret&quot; airship that Google co-founder Sergey Brin is building at an old Nasa airbase in Santa Clara County.</strong></p> <p>According to the report, which cited anonymous sources who couldn&rsquo;t speak on the record because of non-disclosure agreements, Brin <strong>intends to use the airship to deliver food and supplies to desperate people in &ldquo;remote locations&rdquo;&ndash; a task that&rsquo;s uniquely suited for an airship because airships don&rsquo;t require airports - or any infrastructure, really - to travel from point A to point B.</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/bodybag_0.JPG"><strong><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/20172605Brin_0.JPG" style="width: 500px; height: 398px;" /></strong></a></p> <p><strong>Of course, when the luxurious &ldquo;air yacht&rdquo; isn&rsquo;t being used for these humanitarian purpose, it will serve as a leisure vessel for Brin&rsquo;s families and friends.</strong></p> <p>Here are a few more details about the airship reported <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/may/26/google-sergey-brin-building-largest-aircraft">by The Guardian:</a>The airship&rsquo;s 200-meter size would make it the largest airship in the modern age, though It would stil be smaller than the Hindenburg Zeppelins of the 1930s and the American navy airship USS Macon, which was once based in the very same hangars where Brin&rsquo;s aircraft is now being built.</p> <ul> <li>Brin&rsquo;s airship will rely on a system of internal gas bladders to create the ballast necessary to keep the ship anchored to the ground while heavy loads are being offloaded.</li> <li>In November 2014, a Google-controlled company called Planetary Ventures signed a 60-year lease for more than 1,000 acres of Moffett Field at Nasa&rsquo;s Ames airbase, where construction on the airship could safely begin. The leased area, which is located near Google&rsquo;s headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., includes the base&rsquo;s three largest airship hangers.</li> <li>Brin&rsquo;s airship was originally intended to use hydrogen as a lifting gas instead of helium because hydrogen is much cheaper and provides 10% more lift. But the Federal Aviation Administration requires all airships to use non-flammable lifting gases, which rules out highly volatile hydrogen. The gas notoriously caused the 1937 crash of the Hindenburg over New Jersey, which killed 36.</li> <li>In early 2015, Brin asked aerospace engineer Alan Weston to build a one-tenth scale model of a variable buoyancy airship to test its air worthiness. Those flight tests apparently went well.</li> </ul> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/20172605hindenburg.JPG"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/20172605hindenburg_0.JPG" style="width: 500px; height: 380px;" /></a></p> <p><strong><a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-25/with-secret-airship-sergey-brin-also-wants-to-fly">Bloomberg reported</a> back in April that construction on the airship had begun,</strong> again citing anonymous sources.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="1175" height="936" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/20172605Brin.JPG?1495832193" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/silicon-valley-billionaire-will-use-air-yacht-deliver-food-supplies-desperate-people#comments Aeronautics Airborne aircraft carriers Aircraft Airship American navy Aviation B+ Buoyancy compensator Federal Aviation Administration Gases Goodyear aircraft Google LZ 129 Hindenburg National Aeronautics and Space Administration Rigid airship Semi-rigid airship USS Macon Zeppelin Fri, 26 May 2017 22:00:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 596768 at http://www.zerohedge.com Global Pension Underfunding Will Grow To $400 Trillion Over Next 30 Years: World Economic Forum http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/global-pension-underfunding-will-grow-400-trillion-over-next-30-years-world-economic <p>Earlier this week we highlighted "<a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-24/six-terrifying-graphs-simplistically-summarize-americas-public-pension-crisis">Six Terrifying Graphs That Summarize America's Public Pension Crisis</a>" which ranked state, county and city-level public pensions in the United States by which are screwed the most.&nbsp; To summarize, <strong>the study concluded that public pensions in the U.S. alone are currently underfunded by nearly $4 trillion and that taxpayers in Illinois, California and New Jersey should probably be looking to move before getting drowned in their state's coming pension-induced tax hike tsunami.</strong></p> <p>Of course, as we've argued before, the current pension underfunding levels are sure to only get worse over the coming decades as the world will have to contend with a wave of retiring Baby Boomers and a period of lackluster, volatile returns.&nbsp; So how bad could the global funding gap get?&nbsp; Unfortunately, the <a href="http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_White_Paper_We_Will_Live_to_100.pdf">World Economic Forum</a> (WEF) recently set out to solve that impossible math equation and it turns out the answer is about $400 trillion...give or take a couple trillion.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/26/2017.05.26 - Pension 2.JPG"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/26/2017.05.26%20-%20Pension%202_0.JPG" style="width: 600px; height: 366px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Not surprisingly, the <strong>WEF attributed their terrifying conclusion to an ageing population, lack of savings, low expected growth rates and financially illiterate citizens.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>Long-term, low-growth environment:</strong> Over the past 10 years, long-term investment returns have been significantly lower than historic averages. Equities have performed 3%-5% below historic averages and bond returns have typically been 1%-3% lower. Low rates have grown future liabilities, and at the same time investment returns have been lower than expected and unable to make up the growing pension shortfall.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Inadequate savings rates:</strong> To support a reasonable level of income in retirement, 10%-15% of an average annual salary needs to be saved. Today, individual savings rates in most countries are far lower. This is already presenting challenges where traditionally defined benefit structures would have provided a guaranteed pension benefit. Now, as workers look at their defined contribution retirement balances, with no guaranteed benefits, they are realizing that the retirement income their savings will provide will be much lower than expected.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Low levels of financial literacy:</strong>&nbsp; Levels of financial literacy are very low worldwide. This represents a threat to pension systems which are more selfdirected and which rely more on private savings in addition to employer- or government-provided savings.</p> </blockquote> <p>Of course, ignoring that minor ~20 year increase in life expectancy over the past 60 years without raising retirement ages can take a toll on those present value calculations of future liabilities.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/26/2017.05.26 - Pension 4.JPG"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/26/2017.05.26%20-%20Pension%204_0.JPG" style="width: 500px; height: 387px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Oh, and <strong>turns out that politicians creating massive ponzi schemes</strong> to promise citizens that their government would take care of their financial needs in perpetuity, while never really bothering to explain the true costs of such programs, <strong>was probably a bad idea.</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/26/2017.05.26 - Pension 3.JPG"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/26/2017.05.26%20-%20Pension%203_0.JPG" style="width: 600px; height: 300px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>But luckily these politicians are exempt from being prosecuted for their financial crimes...so taxpayers will just have to deal with picking up the $400 trillion tab.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em><strong>The full WEF study can be viewed <a href="http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_White_Paper_We_Will_Live_to_100.pdf">here</a>:</strong></em></p> <p><iframe src="https://www.scribd.com/embeds/349512211/content?start_page=1&amp;view_mode=scroll&amp;access_key=key-I8HjMqUna5O42X4IpqGb&amp;show_recommendations=true" width="100%" height="600" frameborder="0" scrolling="no"></iframe></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="998" height="522" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/Pension%20Grenade_23.png?1495809636" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/global-pension-underfunding-will-grow-400-trillion-over-next-30-years-world-economic#comments Bond Business Defined benefit pension plan Economy Finance Financial services Funding Gap Illinois Investment Labor Money Pension Crisis Pension Underfunding Pensions Pensions crisis Pensions in the United Kingdom Personal finance Retirement Retirement spend-down Social Issues World Economic Forum Fri, 26 May 2017 21:35:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 596721 at http://www.zerohedge.com Hillary Clinton: "The Right Is Afraid Of Me Because I Don't Die" http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/hillary-clinton-right-afraid-me-because-i-dont-die <p>After recovering from<strong> another coughing fit</strong>...</p> <blockquote class="twitter-video"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Hillary: COUGH</p> <p>Dems: So inspiring</p> <p>Hillary: I need a lonzinger</p> <p>Dems: She&#39;s my hero</p> <p>Hillary: COUGH</p> <p>Dems: BEST SPEECH EVER<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Wellesley2017?src=hash">#Wellesley2017</a> <a href="https://t.co/yDpPW7Qjm0">pic.twitter.com/yDpPW7Qjm0</a></p> <p>&mdash; ????? ? (@LVNancy) <a href="https://twitter.com/LVNancy/status/868193345343856640">May 26, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><p>Hillary Clinton&#39;s so-called commencement speech <strong>turned into a political rant as she lobbed implicit impeachment jabs at President Trump over his Comey dismissal</strong>...</p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Aqg4lLjW6s0" width="560"></iframe></p> <p>However, in an<a href="http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/05/hillary-clinton-life-after-election.html?mid=nymag_press"> interview with New York magazine later in the day,</a> election-loser Clinton went to town ripping President Trump for firing FBI Director James Comey, calling it <strong>&quot;an effort to derail and bury&quot; the federal investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia</strong>, and asking (and answering) <strong><em>&quot;why is The Right so afraid of me?&quot;</em></strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/26/20170526_clintoff1.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170526_clintoff1.jpg" style="width: 560px; height: 314px;" /></a></p> <p><a href="http://thehill.com/business-a-lobbying/335349-clinton-i-dont-die-despite-the-rights-best-efforts"><em>As The Hill reports</em></a>, former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton is pledging not to drop out of the political fight, despite what she calls efforts by some conservatives to silence her.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;You know, these guys on the other side are <u><strong>not just interested in my losing, they want to keep coming after me.</strong></u> I mean, think about that for a minute,&rdquo; Clinton said.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><u><em><strong>&ldquo;What are they so afraid of? Me, to some extent. Because I don&rsquo;t die, despite their best efforts. But what [really drives them] is what I represent.&quot;</strong></em></u></p> </blockquote> <p>Which is supremely ironic given the media&#39;s incessant attacks on Trump since he &#39;won&#39; the election. However Clinton was not done.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/26/20170526_clintoff2.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/26/20170526_clintoff2_0.jpg" style="width: 560px; height: 320px;" /></a></p> <p><a href="http://thehill.com/homenews/news/335343-clinton-comey-firing-is-an-effort-to-derail-and-bury-russia-probe">Then she ripped President Trump </a>for firing FBI Director James Comey, calling it<strong> &ldquo;an effort to derail and bury&rdquo; the federal investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&quot;I am less surprised than I am worried,&rdquo; </strong>Clinton said in an interview with New York magazine published Friday. &ldquo;Not that he shouldn&rsquo;t have been disciplined. And certainly the Trump campaign relished everything that was done to me in July and then particularly in October.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;Having said that,<strong> I think what&rsquo;s going on now is an effort to derail and bury the Russia inquiry, and I think that&rsquo;s terrible for our country,&rdquo; </strong>she said in the interview, which took place a day after Comey&#39;s firing.</p> </blockquote> <p>Finally <a href="http://thehill.com/business-a-lobbying/335349-clinton-i-dont-die-despite-the-rights-best-efforts">The Hill notes that </a>the former secretary of State is in the process of writing a book, in which she reflects on her election loss. <strong><em>Clinton says the process is &ldquo;excruciating.&rdquo;</em></strong></p> <p>An extremely ironic word to use given how so many feel hearing from her every day since the lost election...</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="560" height="314" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170526_clintoff1.jpg?1495832413" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/hillary-clinton-right-afraid-me-because-i-dont-die#comments Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation Dismissal of James Comey Dismissal of United States Attorneys controversy Donald Trump FBI Federal Bureau of Investigation Federal Bureau of Investigation Hillary Clinton James Comey Politics Politics Rodham family Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections Twitter Twitter United States Fri, 26 May 2017 21:11:19 +0000 Tyler Durden 596774 at http://www.zerohedge.com