Friday, May 25, 2018

By Nation, May 25, 2018

President Donald Trump has often bragged of his friendship with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, but recent events point to growing stresses between Washington and Beijing.

This week, the Pentagon pulled its invitation for China to participate in maritime exercises in the Pacific, then Trump on Thursday scrapped a summit with North Korea after suggesting Xi may have exacerbated a breakdown in communications.

By The Hill, May 25, 2018

Ivanka Trump is set to headline two fundraisers for House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) in California next month, according to a Friday report in Politico Playbook.

President Trump's daughter and senior adviser will appear alongside McCarthy at events in Fresno and Los Angeles on June 18. The proceeds will go to Protect the House, McCarthy's joint-fundraising committee with Vice President Pence.

By Bloomberg, May 24, 2018

President Donald Trump described as “warm and productive” a conciliatory statement from North Korea saying it remained willing to meet with the U.S. after Trump abruptly canceled a June 12 summit with the country’s leader Kim Jong Un.

North Korea’s First Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan said Friday that his country still wanted to pursue peace and said it would give Washington more time to reconsider talks. He added that North Korea “inwardly highly appreciated” Trump for agreeing to the summit, and hoped the “Trump formula” would help lead to a deal between the adversaries.

By Deadline, May 24, 2018

Morgan Freeman, who has been accused by multiple women of inappropriate behavior or harassment on set, at his production company and/or while marketing his movies, issued a brief statement of apology this morning, saying, “Anyone who knows me or has worked with me knows I am not someone who would intentionally offend or knowingly make anyone feel uneasy.  I apologize to anyone who felt uncomfortable or disrespected — that was never my intent.”

By IMT Online, May 24, 2018

Mortgage rates continued their upward march this week, extending the most prolonged increase in rates in 46 years.

According to the latest data released Thursday by Freddie Mac, the 30-year fixed-rate average climbed to 4.66 percent with an average 0.4 point. (Points are fees paid to a lender equal to 1 percent of the loan amount.) It was 4.61 percent a week ago and 3.95 percent a year ago.

By News 9, May 24, 2018

OKLAHOMA CITY - A mother and daughter were shot Thursday night at a popular restaurant on Lake Hefner in northwest Oklahoma City, police said.
The shooting occurred at Louie’s Grill & Bar at 9401 Lake Hefner Parkway around 6:30 p.m. 

According to Captain Bo Mathews with the Oklahoma City Police Department, the suspect described as an 18 to 20-year-old white male entered the restaurant and opened fire.

By The Sun, May 25, 2018

Rymir Satterthwaite's  guardian has even launched a legal battle against their own lawyers - accusing them of colluding with the rapper’s legal team to help him get out of taking the test.  

By NBC News, May 25, 2018

Disgraced film mogul Harvey Weinstein was charged in Manhattan Friday with felony rape and criminal sex act connected to cases involving two separate women, capping a months-long saga that saw dozens come forward with accusations that spanned four decades and three continents.

By Deadline, May 24, 2018

Morgan Freeman and VISA have enjoyed a long relationship over years with the actor appearing in many of the credit card’s commercials as well as featured as a voiceover artist in its spots. After today, following allegations that surfaced from multiple women about sexual harassment and untoward behavior by the 80 year-old actor, VISA is stepping back.

By Deadline, May 251, 2018

Facing potentially years behind bars, sources say Weinstein is likely looking at first degree and third degree rape charges and a first degree criminal sexual act charge from the Manhattan District Attorney’s office.

Once the most powerful producer in Hollywood, Weinstein exited the precinct house at about 8:45 AM ET in handcuffs, escorted into a waiting car. The New York Police Department issued a statement saying he had been arrested and charged with rape, criminal sex act, sex abuse and sexual misconduct for incidents involving two separate women.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

By Daily Caller, May 23, 2018

Correction: This piece originally reported that the special counsel requested an indefinite delay. It was been updated to reflect the request was a joint-filing with the defendant, and was for a 90-day delay. Since original publication, the court has granted the request.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller asked a federal judge Tuesday to reject the four-decade-old speedy trial law in the case against 13 Russians and three Russian companies and has asked for a 90-day delay in his Russian collusion case. The defendant, Concord Management and Consulting, joined in his request, filing a joint motion.

By CNBC, May 24, 2018

President Donald Trump canceled his historic nuclear summit with Kim Jong Un on Thursday, accusing North Korea of "tremendous anger and open hostility."

The meeting, which would have marked the first face-to-face encounter between a sitting U.S. president and a North Korean leader, was set for June 12 in Singapore.

By NewsBusters, May 23, 2018

Today’s journalists routinely assert that it is “extreme,” “dangerous,” and possibly even criminal for the White House – or anyone else, for that matter – to criticize an investigation into the President. But twenty years ago, Independent Counsel Ken Starr was savaged by the same liberal media during his investigation of then-President Bill Clinton. At that time, Starr was harangued as a “partisan” and “inept prosecutor,” and a “peeping Tom.”

On Monday evening, MSNBC host Chris Matthews shared his take on the Trump administration’s attitude towards Mueller while hosting Hardball: “President Trump is indicating today that he’s willing to go to extreme new lengths to discredit the Russia probe.”

By Reuters, May 23, 2018

(Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, received a secret payment of at least $400,000 to arrange talks between Trump and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko last year, the British Broadcasting Corp reported on Wednesday.

By STL Today, May 23, 2018

WASHINGTON • United States Border Patrol Patrol agents seized more than 3,500 pounds of opioids between 2013 and 2017, mostly near the southern border of the United States, and seizures of fentanyl by this federal agency were up by almost 72 percent in a single year, according to a new report by investigators for Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo.

By Hot Air, May 23, 2018

Well, not exactly. He describes himself towards the end of the clip here as a “very conservative person.”

I’m going to guess he’s “very conservative” the way Ron Paul is “very conservative.”

By Daily M-ail, May 23, 2018

The 30-year-old man who garnered national attention for his refusal to move out of his parents' home has spoken out to detail his troubles with his folks.

On Tuesday, a judge ordered Michael Rotondo to move out of his parents' home in Camillus, New York, where he has been living rent-free for nearly a decade. 

By NBC News, May 23, 2018

Social media is a brave new world in a lot of ways — and sadly one of them is child exploitation.

Platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram theoretically have policies for how old children have to be before opening an account, but no way to verify the birth dates users input. The result isn’t just kids opening their own accounts without their parents’ permission (though that happens plenty too), but accounts opened for children by their parents in order to monetize their offspring.

By Business Insider, May 25, 2018

WASHINGTON (AP) — Harvey Weinstein's lawyer said in a court filing that federal prosecutors in New York have launched a criminal investigation into the film producer, in addition to a previously disclosed probe by the Manhattan District Attorney.

By Town Hall, May 23, 2018

We've been writing about the possibility of a looming Supreme Court vacancy for some time now, having been informed by a very well-placed source last spring that Justice Anthony Kennedy was on the brink of retirement. Here we are more than a year later, and those rumors have only gained steam -- with the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee going so far as to urge Kennedy to get on with it and announce his intentions as soon as possible.  Among the members of the Senate who are most plugged into the goings on of the Supreme Court

By RedState, May 23, 2018

According to a Reuters/Ipsos poll, support for gun control is already waning three months after the Parkland, Florida school shooting.

Unsurprisingly, anti-gun excitement spikes in the immediate aftermath of a mass shooting, but eventually the hysteria subsides. The Florida incident is no outlier.

By Larry Elder, May 24 2018

President Donald Trump doubled down on calling members of a notorious street gang "animals." Good for him for not backing down and for shining a light on an outrageous phenomenon, especially in Southern California: Latino gangs that target blacks, whether or not they belong to gangs, for death.

Trump, during a roundtable discussion last week with state and local officials from California about so-called sanctuary laws, said: "Deadly and unconstitutional sanctuary state laws ... (offer) safe harbor to some of the most vicious and violent offenders on earth, like MS-13 gang members, putting innocent men, women and children at the mercy of these sadistic criminals."

Margaret Mims, the sheriff of Northern California's Fresno County, talked about the problems caused by the state's so-called sanctuary laws, and that such laws made it harder "to find the bad guys." Mims said, "There could be an MS-13 gang member I know about: If they don't reach a certain threshold (under California's sanctuary laws) I cannot tell ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) about it."

That's when Trump dropped the "A-word."

In response to Sheriff Mims' comments, Trump said: "We have people coming into the country -- or trying to come in; we're stopping a lot of them. But we're taking people out of the country. You wouldn't believe how bad these people are. These aren't people. These are animals. And we're taking them out of the country at a level and at a rate that's never happened before."

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., immediately pounced. The Senate minority leader tweeted: "When all of our great-great-grandparents came to America they weren't 'animals,' and these people aren't either."

But even NBC's Chuck Todd admitted that his media colleagues widely misrepresented the President's remarks, especially the initial media reports that failed to note that Trump was referring to MS-13. "This is where I think that my colleagues do us all harm," Todd said. "You know, cover this legitimately. There is plenty of legitimate stuff to ding him on, if you think he deserves to be dinged on. Just be careful. Don't be sloppy about it." As for the "A-word," Todd said: "A lot of people have called violent anybody animals. Anybody who is a violent criminal, in my book, can get called an animal if they're sitting there mauling, killing and raping people. I don't care where they're from."

Cue the selective outrage. Where was this concern for civility when Hillary "deplorables" Clinton said the NRA reminded her of the "Iranians" and the "communists"? Recall, too, Clinton's own "animals"-type description of some black criminals. In 1996, Clinton said: "We need to take these people on. They are often connected to big drug cartels. They are not just gangs of kids anymore. They are often the kinds of kids that are called superpredators."

Calling the MS-13 gang members "animals" is positively mild compared with what the liberal Southern Poverty Law Center said about other vicious Latino gangs. In 2007, the SPLC published a report called: "Latino Gang Members in Southern California Are Terrorizing and Killing Blacks."

Some highlights:

"While the vast majority of hate crimes nationwide are not committed by members of organized groups, Los Angeles County is a different story. Researchers found that in areas with high concentrations, or 'clusters,' of hate crimes, the perpetrators were typically members of Latino street gangs who were purposely targeting blacks. ...

"Mexican Mafia leaders, or shot callers ... have issued a "green light" on all blacks. A sort of gang-life fatwah, this amounts to a standing authorization for Latino gang members to prove their mettle by terrorizing or even murdering any blacks sighted in a neighborhood claimed by a gang loyal to the Mexican Mafia. ...

"Anti-black violence conducted by Latino gangs in Los Angeles has been ongoing for more than a decade. A 1995 Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) report about Latino gang activity in the Normandale Park neighborhood declared, 'This gang has been involved in an ongoing program to eradicate black citizens from the gang neighborhood.' A 1996 LAPD report on gangs in east Los Angeles stated, 'Local gangs will attack any black person that comes into the city.' ...

"The LAPD estimates there are now 22,000 Latino gang members in the city of Los Angeles alone. That's not only more than all the Crips and the Bloods; it's more than all black, Asian, and white gang members combined. Almost all of those Latino gang members in L.A. -- let alone those in other California cities -- are loyal to the Mexican Mafia. Most have been thoroughly indoctrinated with the Mexican Mafia's violent racism during stints in prison, where most gangs are racially based. ...

"'It's almost anywhere in L.A. that you could find yourself in a difficult position (as a black person),' says (a) LAPD probation officer. 'All blacks are on green light no matter where.'"

Trump, in calling brutal gang members "animals," did not go far enough.