TriggerFinger


Supreme Court rules 5-4 for digital privacy

CNetThe US Supreme Court has ruled in favor of digital privacy.

In a 5-4 decision on Friday, the justices said police need warrants to gather phone location data as evidence for trials. That reversed and remanded a decision by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Carpenter v. United States is the first case about phone location data that the Supreme Court has ruled on. That makes it a landmark decision regarding how law enforcement agencies can use technology as they build cases. The court heard arguments in the case on Nov. 29.

Roberts voted with the usual crew of leftists, which is actually rather disappointing. Privacy should be a bipartisan issue, and adhering to the Fourth Amendment in particular should appeal to the justices on the right. I'm not sure what to make of this.

Sun Jun 24 14:22:10 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

A persuasive argument

Andrew McCarthy argues, persuasively, that if the IG report gives the benefit of the doubt to the figures in the DOJ and FBI, Mueller must also give the same benefit of the doubt to Trump -- and that would shut down the special counsel's investigation.

He's right, but it won't matter, because Mueller is on a witch hunt for the Deep State. He won't stop until he writes his report asking the House to impeach Trump, because he's just as politically biased as the actors in the IG report -- most of whom also participated in his investigation.

Sun Jun 24 13:22:16 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Socialist calls for burning down the opposition's tent

Daily CallerFlorida International University student Andy Vila, chairman of a Young Democratic Socialists of America chapter, delivered a speech about fighting capitalism, conservative values, and President Trump, who he deems a “fascist.”

During the “How to Fight Fascism and the Right” spiel, Vila posed the question, “Now that I know how Right-wingers will act, how can I smash them?”

“We were like, ‘Okay, guys, so these guys are gonna spread their BS message on our campus, what do we do? We obviously can’t burn down their tent, as much as we want to, because that’s a bad thing I guess.'”

This sort of hateful advocacy of violence is (and probably should remain) legal, but should also be heavily criticized and denied an audience by responsible organizations. Those who call for violence against their political opponents should be lonely, solitary voices lacking in support, platform, or audience.

Unfortunately, we're seeing increasing calls for violence from people with support and with audiences, including this young socialist idiot.

Some would stop and ask whether the typical response to calls to confiscate firearms ("Molon Labe!", meaning, "Come and take them!", a reference to the last stand of the Spartans at Thermopylae) is a call for violence. It is, but it is a call for violence in defense of self and fundamental rights, and it occurs in the context of defending the principles of the nation's founding. Governments which attempt to confiscate guns violate the 2nd Amendment and the contract that grants them their powers.

The difference between violence in righteous self defense and just burning down the tent of the political opposition because you hate them and want to smash them is vast.

Sun Jun 24 13:22:10 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Supreme Court rules 5-4 for allowing states to tax internet sales

Legal InsurrectionThe Supreme Court in a 5-4 ruling that did not split on traditional ideological lines, upheld South Dakota’s ability to require that out-of-state internet sellers collect state sales tax on goods sold into South Dakota. The case involved the internet retailer Wayfair and South Dakota.

The case is being misrepresented in many media reports as involving whether states can tax internet sales. They can, and that was not in issue. The issue was whether states can force internet retailers to collect the sales tax and turn those proceeds over to the state.

The Court overruled prior holdings that required a physical presence, ruling that such a physical requirement rule was developed prior to the internet as we know it today. the Kennedy opinion is joined by Thomas, Alito, Ginsburg, and Gorsuch. Thomas and Gorsuch have concurring opinions. Roberts dissented, joined by Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan.

In practical terms, this means businesses will be required to remain up to date on tax laws in 50 states (and what about cities, counties, and localities that have their own sales taxes)? That's going to be impossible for small businesses to keep up with, but large businesses will be able to handle it without any problems. And what about infamous targeted taxes, like those Seattle has placed on firearms? Yet another point of complexity.

This change strikes me as very bad policy.

Legally, I vaguely remember when Congress used the commerce clause to place a moratorium on sales taxes over the internet. Congress, of course, is the right entity to make those calls on interstate commerce, while sales taxes are appropriate for intrastate commerce. Did that get changed when I wasn't looking? I suppose it must have.

Sun Jun 24 12:22:16 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Can you work for DOJ and participate in mob harassment?

Daily CallerOne of the activists who chased Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen out of a Mexican restaurant Tuesday night over the Trump administration’s immigration policies is an employee of the Department of Justice, The Daily Caller News Foundation has confirmed.

Members of the Washington, D.C., chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America crashed Nielsen’s meal with a demonstration full of chants and other outbursts.

One of those participants, Allison Hrabar, actually works for the Trump administration — as a paralegal in the DOJ.

Right now it looks like you can.

Sun Jun 24 12:22:10 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

United and American Airlines refuse to transport children back home

Ace of Spades quoting Fox NewsUnited Airlines joined American Airlines in telling the federal government to "immediately refrain" from using its planes to transport children who have been separated from their families who crossed the US-Mexico border.

Like many other US airlines, American has contracts with the federal government that allow authorities to use its planes to provide for certain travel. For example, the company said it has "carried refugees for non-profits and the government."

"We have no desire to be associated with separating families, or worse, to profit from it," the company said in a statement Wednesday. "We have every expectation the government will comply with our request and we thank them for doing so."

Funny thing about contracts, they aren't really supposed to be optional once you have agreed to something. The other funny thing about contracts is that they often have penalty clauses.

Exercise those clauses and use the money to build the wall.

Sun Jun 24 11:22:16 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

How threatening tariffs leads to free trade

InstapunditTheir proposal, people familiar with the situation say, is simple: Abandon all import tariffs for cars between the European Union and the U.S.

That would mean scrapping the EU’s 10% tax on auto imports from the U.S. and other countries and the 2.5% duty on auto imports in the U.S. As a prerequisite, the Europeans want Mr. Trump’s threat of imposing a 25% border tax on European auto imports off the table.

Threatening tariffs as a negotiating position makes a lot of sense when working towards both free and fair trade, even if tariffs themselves are economically inefficient.

Sun Jun 24 11:22:10 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Were FBI 302 interview records modified?

Fox NewsThe FBI may have "edited and changed" key witness reports in the Hillary Clinton and Russia investigations, a top House Republican charged in a hearing into FBI and Justice Department misconduct Tuesday.

I've seen that alleged multiple times, but we don't know any details, and as far as I know it wasn't in the report. He says his office intends to follow up on that matter. That's fine for Michael Flynn (who is another case of alleged modified 302s) but what about the allegations that the 302s from the Clinton case were either modified after the fact or carefully sanitized by agents as they were written? How can he follow up on that matter if he has already written his report on the Clinton email case?

Also, just as an aside: it's shameful and borderline suspicious that the FBI relies on notes from agents rather than recording their interviews.

Fox NewsFreedom Caucus Chair Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C, also raised the possibility that the FBI misled the DOJ watchdog in an attempt to hide the identities of FBI employees who were caught sending anti-Trump messages.

Believe it or not, that's not referring to the likely attempts from Strzok to hide his embarrassing promise to stop Trump. It's referring to another pair of lawyers who haven't gotten much attention yet.

Fox NewsIn a dramatic moment, Meadows then directly asked Horowitz whether two anonymous FBI employees identified as making anti-Trump statements in the IG's report were named Kevin Clinesmith and Sally Moyer.

Horowitz refused to confirm the employees' identities, which the FBI has declined to publicly reveal, citing the supposed sensitivity of their counterintelligence matters.

Public accountability demands we know who they are, so we can demand they be removed from any investigations where their bias might influence the results.

Sun Jun 24 10:22:16 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

IG investigating Comey

The BlazeMichael Horowitz, the Department of Justice’s Inspector General, revealed that former FBI Director James Comey’s actions were under investigation on the recommendation of the agency that he used to lead.
Why is Comey being investigated?

Horowitz said that the FBI had recommended that he investigate Comey’s handling of memos documenting his conversations with President Donald Trump. Comey had shared some of these memos with a law professor friend, knowing that his friend would pass them along to The New York Times. Some of the memos had contained classified information.

Judging by what happened with the Clinton email IG report, we may need a special counsel. That report laid out the facts, and then refused to recommend any significant corrective action. Comey's leaking likely needs significant corrective action.

Sun Jun 24 10:22:10 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Car accident injures Trump supporter who just won primary

Conservative TreehouseSouth Carolina lawmaker Katie Arrington, who defeated U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C., in the Republican primary for his seat last month, was seriously injured in a fatal car accident on Friday night.

Campaign adviser Michael Mule said that Arrington, 47, a state representative, was on her way to Hilton Head, South Carolina, for a Saturday morning event when another car, which was driving in the wrong lane, struck her vehicle head on.

The timing seems a little suspicious. I don't want to jump to conclusions, but I hope this is thoroughly investigated.

Sun Jun 24 09:22:16 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

10 more questions about the Weiner laptop

Daily CallerPeter Strzok and the Trump-hating key players in the Clinton email “investigation” were already well into crafting and leaking the Trump-Russia collusion narrative.

Then, the unthinkable happened.

Only a few hours after the New York office of the FBI took possession of the Weiner laptop, on September 26, 2016, the FBI computer expert discovered it contained more than 140,000 emails involving Hillary Clinton. They were from multiple domain names: State.gov, Clintonemail.com, ClintonFoundation.org, HillaryClinton.com and Blackberry devices. The agent had what he told the inspector general was an “oh shit moment” — recognizing that he had found evidence important to the most important investigation — and he immediately reported it up the chain.

Of course, the DC office was determined to ignore it.

Sun Jun 24 09:22:10 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Paul Manafort imprisoned until trial

Washington ExaminerHarvard Law School professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz said it was “obnoxious to our Constitution” to put former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort behind bars prior to a trial.

“He has never been convicted of anything. He is as innocent as you and I,” Dershowitz said in an interview on MSNBC on Friday. “And the idea of locking somebody up before a trial is so obnoxious to our Constitution that every civil libertarian should be up in arms. What they can do if they think that he’s tampering with witnesses is: They can subject him to home arrest, take away his computer … they can have all kinds of restrictions, but the idea of putting somebody in jail before they’ve been convicted is an enactment of civil liberties.”

The comments come after Manafort was taken to a federal jail on Friday after U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson revoked his current bail that permitted him out on house arrest and after he pleaded not guilty to charges of obstruction. He will stay at the federal jail until his trial in September.

I won't defend Manafort, other than to say I don't trust Mueller to fairly characterize his actions or his situation. This strikes me as another pressure tactic to coerce a guilty plea (just to get it all over with) and cooperation against Trump. These tactics are despicable in what amounts to a simple civil case, and doubly so because they are being transparently applied in service of political ends.

Sat Jun 23 16:42:51 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Former police officer charged with making threats against Trump

Washington ExaminerA Tennessee man has been charged with two counts of making threats against the president, the Justice Department announced Thursday night.

According to the DOJ, 37-year-old Andrew Long Ryan of Greenbrier, Tenn., was indicted Wednesday by a federal grand jury in regard to a string of threatening social media messages he posted on May 28 and 29, while President Trump was visiting Nashville.

Ryan, a former Bowling Green police officer, wrote "Death is coming,” on Facebook and tweeted that he "will kill Donald Trump if you don’t follow my leaders lead."

I wonder who his leaders are?

Washington ExaminerEarlier in 2018, a Utah man was indicted on 11 charges of threatening to kill the president during Trump's visit to Salt Lake City.

33-year-old Travis Luke Dominguez alerted the Unified Police Department of the Greater Salt Lake of his threat himself, writing via their tip line he "woke up and decided to kill the president Donald Trump today."

"Please forgive me and then I will die by suicide by cop," he continued before doubling down on killing "the sexist, racist, homophobic President Trump today."

"Nothing you can do to save President Trump nor stop me pigs," he wrote and threatened to harm any police officers who might try to stop him.

The media freakout has consequences.

Sat Jun 23 16:42:45 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

About those law enforcement failures...

Pawpaw's placeOver the course of my career, I arrested a lot of goblins for firearms possession. I'd arrest immediately on a violation of parole, then refer the offense to the District Attorney to see if he wanted to press new charges for Poss Firearm by Convicted Felon.

The parolee would always be sent back on my violation, but I never once had a DA file new charges based on my report. It seemed like it would be a pretty easy slam-dunk, but no DA ever took the bait. Go figure.

And (lack of) enforcement policies like that ensure criminals don't take gun laws seriously. If you're not even going to enforce them on easy cases to add another 10 years for felon in possession, why bother having them on the books at all?

Sat Jun 23 15:42:51 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Andrew McCarthy examines the assumptions in the IG report

National ReviewDespite the sprawl of Justice Department inspector general Michael Horowitz’s 568-page report on the Clinton-emails investigation, there is precious little discussion of the most important issue: The Justice Department and FBI’s rationale for declining to prosecute Hillary Clinton. I believe this is intentional. The inspector general’s message is: “Despite pervasive political bias and investigative irregularities, which I have comprehensively documented, rest assured that nothing too terrible happened here.”

That silver-lining version of this dark spectacle could not have survived a searching analysis of the decision not to indict.

But they won't have to, because the media has already moved on.

Sat Jun 23 15:42:45 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Vicious, murderous scum

Daily Pundit (Steve F)Less-PC and less-bullshit summary: Disgusting mohammedan animal, dissatisfied with living the good life with no effort on his part, murdered a Swedish girl by cutting off her head and stabbing her 130 times. He also repeatedly stabbed her sister, but she played dead after a couple stabs so he didn’t finish her off. The animal expressed no remorse for what he did, but justified it by saying he thought one of the girls made a racist remark.

He learned from the left that saying your enemies are racists will excuse anything.

Sat Jun 23 14:42:51 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

The illegal alien children panic is a distraction

PJMediaThat it has been miraculously discovered -- despite having been going on for decades -- that children are being temporarily incarcerated on the border is a perfect example of that. It's no accident this surfaced at the moment the FBI is under fire for the Clinton email investigation and the possibility the organization sought to sabotage the presidency of Donald Trump.

Yep. The Dems had enough warning of the IG report's timing to have a plan for distracting people from it, and this was it. It doesn't have to be an official conspiracy throughout all the media; it just needs a few people with a lot of media contacts to start a topic cascade, and a near-universal desire to avoid talking about something that hurts Democrats.

Sat Jun 23 14:42:45 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Millions in day-care scam dollars leaving from Minnesota

Judicial WatchYears after Judicial Watch exposed the Obama administration’s special behind-the-scenes tours for Somali Muslims at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, millions of dollars in cash are being smuggled weekly from the facility to the Middle East. Some of the money is being funneled to a region of Somalia that is controlled by the Al Shabaab terrorist group, according to a disturbing months-long investigation conducted by a national media outlet. “These cloak-and-dagger scenarios now happen almost weekly at MSP,” the probe found. “The money is usually headed to the Middle East, Dubai and points beyond. Sources said last year alone, more than $100 million in cash left MSP in carry-on luggage.” The investigation is based on public records and nearly a dozen government sources with direct knowledge of the scheme.

We're paying them to try to kill us.

Sat Jun 23 13:42:51 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Cohen signaling for financial help?

CNNDonald Trump's personal attorney Michael Cohen has signaled to friends that he is "willing to give" investigators information on the President if that's what they are looking for, and is planning on hiring a new lawyer to handle a possible indictment from federal prosecutors.
"He knows a lot of things about the President and he's not averse to talking in the right situation," one of Cohen's New York friends who is in touch with him told CNN. "If they want information on Trump, he's willing to give it."
Cohen is planning to hire Guy Petrillo, a former chief of the criminal division of the US attorney's office in Manhattan and an experienced trial lawyer, a source familiar confirmed. The source said all the paperwork and retainer may not have been finalized just yet.

A couple things come to mind here. First, the source is CNN, which make it suspicious -- both in general and specifically because they have a history of (probably deliberately) screwing up stories about Trump. Second, CNN cites anonymous sources, another red flag.

I figure this is either a false leak intended to make the President nervous, or if accurate, a vaguely threatening plea for help from Cohen, who is likely facing financial trouble after the police raids (which would, of course, dry up his legal business -- as undoubtedly known and intended).

Sat Jun 23 13:42:45 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Understanding the FBI investigation

American ThinkerThe hang-up was this: To get a FISA warrant you need more than just a Preliminary Investigation; you need a Full Investigation, and that whole process can take months. In fact, the FBI didn't get its Full Investigation until the end of July, basically 3 months after the NSA pulled the plug on them. What could the FBI do in the meantime as a stopgap? D. Manny is arguing that the FBI made use of another investigative technique that's authorized under a PI: consensual monitoring, i.e., consensual recording of conversations, "wearing a wire." So the meaning of the cryptic Strzok/Page text becomes clear as a complaint or lament:

We had the full run of NSA data and now, thanks to Mike Rogers, we're reduced to consensual monitoring -- a far more cumbersome and less productive method, in the circumstances.

This is the context in which we need to view the June 9, 2016, meeting at Trump Tower between Donald Trump, Jr., and Paul Manafort from the Trump campaign and a group headed by the dodgy Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya. Recall how that meeting went down. Veselnitskaya had claimed to have "dirt" on Hillary but​,​ when she turned up at Trump Tower, instead of dishing the "dirt" she kept yammering about the Magnitsky Act sanctions. I suggest that what was going on was an attempt by Veselnitskaya to elicit from the Trump campaign an offer of a quid pro quo -- an offer to act on or reconsider sanctions against Russia in exchange for the previously promised "dirt" on Hillary. I really can't see any other way to understand that meeting and Veselnitskaya's behavior, and any hint of a quid pro quo of any sort would have served the purpose.

Fortunately, Don Jr. didn't bite, and instead terminated the meeting. If he had discussed or hinted at a possible quid pro quo of any sort that could have spelled the end of the Trump campaign -- especially if the meeting had been the subject of consensual monitoring, was recorded using one or several techniques.

Makes sense to me. I wonder if there's a tape of that conversation sitting in an FBI evidence room somewhere?

Sat Jun 23 12:42:51 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

About peaceful, crime-free, gun-free Europe...

BBCThe devices are easily obtained, says Reine Bergland of Stockholm police. They can be bought from gangs for just a couple of hundred Swedish kroner (about £20).

“Sometimes when they buy weapons they get grenades as part of the deal. They throw in a couple of hand grenades, so to speak.”

The rise in possession of hand grenades – mainly unused stock from the Yugoslav wars of the 1990s – has come to symbolise Sweden’s heated debate about violent crime as it heads towards an election in September.

That can't be true. Grenades are illegal in Europe.

Hat tip to Never Yet Melted

Sat Jun 23 12:42:45 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Almost a thousand casualties from terrorist refugees

Free BeaconNearly 1,000 people were injured or killed in terrorist attacks involving refugees over a four-year span, with Germany facing the highest number of terror plots, according to a new Heritage Foundation report published Monday.

Data collected from the 194 terrorist plots detected across Europe between January 2014 and December 2017...

That's a lot of dead people from Merkel's virtue signaling.

Sat Jun 23 11:42:51 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

PA Union to back Republican congressman

Free BeaconThe largest labor union in Pennsylvania is throwing its weight behind a Republican congressman.

The Pennsylvania AFL-CIO endorsed Republican representative Brian Fitzpatrick over his Democratic opponent, Scott Wallace, who inherited a fortune valued between $127 and $309 million. Fitzpatrick welcomed the endorsement, saying it reflected his commitment to bipartisanship, as well as his dedication to constituents.

If this trend continues, things are going to get very interesting for the Democrats.

Sat Jun 23 11:42:45 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Trump is just as popular as Obama

Investor's Business DailyThe latest Gallup poll puts Trump's job approval at 45%. That's the highest it's been since he took office, and it's up from 37% at the start of the year. Although you'd barely know it from the press Trump gets, his approval number has been on a slow but relatively steady rise all year.

Not only that, but Trump's approval in this poll is now equal to Obama's at the same point in Obama's presidency. Gallup had Obama at 45% approval by late June 2010.

The left will hate this, but it's still true.

Sat Jun 23 10:42:51 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

A victory in Delaware

Delaware OnlineAn effort to revive a proposed ban on the sale of assault weapons failed in the Delaware Senate on Tuesday, effectively defeating the most controversial gun control measure pending before the Legislature.

Two Democrats sided with Republicans in opposing the maneuver, including Sen. Brian Bushweller of Dover and Sen. Bruce Ennis of Smyrna. That left Democrats two votes short of the 11 needed to bring the measure to the floor.

Sometimes holding the line is the best we can do, but it's still a victory.

Sat Jun 23 10:42:45 CDT 2018 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

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