Utility Double Whammy as KGS Joins the 2018 Rate Hike Request Bandwagon

by Allen Williams


Kansas Gas Corporation is back for another rate increase in just two years, Docket No.:18-KGSG-560 RTS   The last one having been approved in 2016.  KGS is a subsidiary of ONE Gas.  ONE Gas Inc is another large conglomerate supplying Oklahoma, Eastern Kansas and parts of Texas where guaranteed levels of income are desired regardless of overall consumption.    

Breitbart reports that Electric, Gas, and Water Rates Falling Due to Trump Tax Cuts 

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act cut the corporate rate from 35% to 21%.. Utility companies are passing on the tax savings in the form of lower rates for customers,” – Americans for Tax Reform.

But this phenomenon is apparently not true in Kansas where utility rates continue to rise.  

The ONE Gas financial report at http://investor.onegas.com/news/news-releases/news-details/2018/ONE-Gas-Announces-First-quarter-2018-Financial-Results/default.aspx  shows:

Net margin increased by $0.8 million compared with first quarter 2017, which primarily reflects:

  • A $5.1 million increase from new rates primarily in Texas and Kansas;
  • A $2.5 million increase from the impact of the weather-normalization mechanisms in Kansas and Oklahoma;
  • A $2.5 million increase due primarily to higher transportation volumes;
  • A $1.2 million increase attributed to net residential customer growth in Oklahoma and Texas;
  • A $0.9 million increase due to a compressed natural gas excise tax credit that was enacted in February 2018 and retroactive to 2017; and
  • A $0.8 million increase in rider and surcharge recoveries due to a higher ad-valorem surcharge in Kansas, which is offset with higher regulatory amortization expense; offset by
  • A $12.3 million decrease related to the deferral of potential refund obligations from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.

So KGS admits revenues are up from a combined increase in Texas and Kansas but it’s NOT enough! There appears to be no end to KGS rate and new cost factor requests, the latest being the Kansas  Gas System Reliability Surcharge which now is to include Cyber attacks.  Why not include impact from the stock market impact in a cost factor as well?

SOURCE:  http://investor.onegas.com/investors/financial-reporting/earnings-and-guidance/default.aspx

 “ONE Gas 2018 net income is expected to be in the range of $167 million to $178 million, or $3.15 to $3.35 per diluted share. The midpoint for ONE Gas’ 2018 net income guidance is $172 million, or $3.25 per diluted share.”

Requests for Kansas utility rate increases are a revolving door chiefly to guarantee satisfactory dividends to ONE Gas investors.  The current KGS request increase is a 10% rate hike to consumers when inflation currently stands at 2.3%.

Is there ANYTHING the rate payer is NOT being asked to fund?  Where is the promise of lower rates to get the earlier rate increase approvals?  Just lies as the market for gas has improved revenues rather than diminished them. Instead rate payers are asked to pay dividends of $3.35 a share. But why stop there? Why not $5.15 or even $10 a share? 

General Motors a for profit corporation is paying just $0.38 cents per share as of their 1st Quarter 2018 financial report:  http://quote.morningstar.com/stock-filing/Quarterly-Report/2018/3/31/t.aspx?t=:GM&ft=&d=8ba56ee4bdd422dcb28a39f579bc9cda while Kansans are forced to pay dividends in the dollar range. WHY?

Extraneous surcharges mask the true price users pay for gas services and in effect are automatic rate bumpers that increase consumer bills unfairly for such things as weather, reliability etc. It is an effective hedge against conservation.  These charges are designed to keep utility bills from advantaging consumers by being too low.  The KGS COG delivery charge is an example.   In Sept of 2018 the service charge was 0.4 MCF at a stated rate of $3.85 per 1000 ft3. 

Extraneous surcharges mask the true price users pay for gas services and in effect are automatic rate bumpers that increase consumer bills unfairly for such things as weather, reliability etc. It is an effective hedge against conservation.  These charges are designed to keep utility bills from advantaging consumers by being too low.  The KGS COG delivery charge is an example.  In Sept of 2018 the service charge was 0.4 MCF at a stated rate of $3.85 per 1000 ft3. 

This $0.4*1000 ft3 * $3.8523/1000 ft3 = $1.54 COG

So the ratio of gas consumption to the charge for providing it is $16.70/$1.54 or 10.84 nearly 11 times the cost of the gas which illustrates my point.  Now KGS wants to increase the delivery service charge from $16.70 to $22.66 which is $22.66/ $1.54 or 14.7 times the cost of the gas.

The result is that KGS customers will pay nearly 15 times as much for the gas to be delivered to their home as for the actual gas consumed not to mention all the other ‘hedge factors’.  The rest of the bill is local taxes.  When service charges exceed the cost of a product by double digits the company is gouging consumers.

BreitBart continues:  “Thus far, ATR has found 102 utility companies that have lowered rates or ceased rate hikes due to President Trump’s tax cuts.”

Why do ONE Gas/KGS customers have to fund dividends at a higher rate than General Motors, #21 on the 2017 fortune 500 list despite a record federal tax cut?

I seriously question the company’s claim that it has “experienced increases in payroll expenses and supplier costs” to justify their current rate request. These cost claims appear to be creative paper expenses towards the end of providing investor dividends.

102 other utilities have either decreased rates or ceased rate requests but not Kansas?  

Commission Consultants are not tantamount to citizen ratepayer oversight of a regulated monopoly

The KGS rate increase is nothing short of rubber stamp legalized robbery.


Election 2020: America needs a leader, not a liar like Clinton

by Rich Panessa


Will it be Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump? Several "protest candidates" have sprouted up which usually indicates they don’t have enough money, or they’re in it to try to upset the election results. As a former member of The Spectrum & Daily News
’ Writer’s Group for six years, I prognosticated about the country’s future under an unqualified Barack Obama. His dynamic speeches inspired the nation, but failed to ignite a fire under him. Predictably, his two terms as president doubled our debt and welfare enrollment, sent race relations back to pre-MLK, while his naive "lead-from-behind" foreign policy became a joke to our enemies, and a death knell to our allies. Nice job.

As if his tenure wasn’t destructive enough, Obama highly recommended Hillary Clinton as his successor. Hillary is an unscrupulous politician who has made a fortune on the backs of the taxpayers. As Bill Clinton’s "point woman" during the scandals that plagued them in Arkansas, she skillfully managed to keep him a few steps ahead of the hangman. Her public life (and Bill’s) has been one shameful scandal after another with recent breaches in national security, "pay for play" implications between foreign governments and the State Department, while lying to Congress. Her investment outcomes have been "miraculous," while record books and sometimes "Arkansas bodies" disappeared just like in an old B-movie mystery.

The difference is the Clinton who-doneit never ends ... and they’re never solved. Whitewater, File Gate, Travel Gate, Bi! ll’s impeachment and trial, a fistful of sexual assaults, Monica, Vince Foster, or why they were gifted a million-dollar New York home by none other than the current governor of Virginia. Then there’s the current FBI and IRS investigations into the Clinton Foundation. Move over Bonnie and Clyde. Donald Trump is not a politician but a businessman who turned his father’s $10 million dollar real estate company into a $10 billion empire. In his ascent, he honed his business skills alongside other powerful moguls like Helmsley, Blau, and Bloomberg, et al., not to mention savvy foreign investors from China, Russia and Japan. He has keen management skills and is a top-notch negotiator.

Like him or not, Trump will re-establish America’s financial and production superiority to regain worldwide trade advantages. He’s a staunch supporter of law ! enforcement and is committed to modernize the military. He’ll allow companies with trillions offshore to repatriate that money with minimal penalties as long as the money remains in the U.S., to help pay for infrastructure investments and tax cuts across the board. His leadership and motivational skills will inspire Congress to reach impossible goals with precision, on time, and unlike before, under budget. For these reasons, regardless of his political missteps so far, I believe he’ll lead our nation from political correctness into an era of "Americanism." Most media outlets in their liberal bias criticize Trump for his gaffes and inexperience at campaigning, but admit he’s not a liar or a thief. He’s someone who will get much done, won’t speak in platitudes, and vehemently protect and defend the Constitution of United States, while never placing himself above the welfare and safety of this nation.

Could you make the same claim about Hillary Cl! inton? Rich Panessa is a resident of St. George.


Fox Bombshell: Peter Strzok’s FBI Mistress Lisa Page Worked for Clinton, According to Text Messages

by Cillian Zeal


According to Fox News, a newly uncovered text message chain seems to confirm that FBI lawyer Lisa Page — one of the two lovebirds whose texts have cast doubt on the objectivity of the Department of Justice’s investigations surrounding the 2016 election — claims that she interned for one of the Clintons.

“Get inspired and depressing reading that article about how Obama approached the mail room,” Page said in a text to Strzok on Jan. 19, 2017 — the last full day of the Obama administration.

Needless to say, it was very different when I interned there under Clinton.”

The article she was discussing was a New York Times piece that described the kind of mail the outgoing president would receive.

“At the beginning of his first term, President (Barack) Obama said he wanted to read his mail. He said he would like to see 10 letters a day. After that, the 10LADs, as they came to be called, were put in a purple folder and added to the back of the briefing book he took with him to the residence on the second floor of the White House each night,” the article, titled “To Obama With Love, and Hate, and Desperation,” read.

“Choosing which letters made it to the president started here in the Executive Office Building adjacent to the White House, in the ‘hard-mail room,’ which had the tired, unkempt look of a college study hall during finals — paper everywhere, files stacked along walls, bundles under tables, boxes propping up computer monitors dotted with Post-its, cables hanging.”

Page is 39 and graduated American University in 2000. It’s unclear which Clinton she would have interned under; President Bill Clinton was leaving office as she was graduating and Hillary Clinton was taking her role as the junior senator from New York in 2001.

Page declined to comment on the latest text.

While the text messages that received the most attention this week involved ones which plotted leaks to the press, the Clinton message — assuming it’s accurate and Page is telling the truth — would also present a conflict of interest.

Both Page and Strzok were involved in the FBI’s Midyear Exam investigation — the codename for the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified email on a private server during her time at the State Department.

That wasn’t all, though.

“Strzok and Page both served on Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team investigating Russian meddling and potential collusion with Trump campaign associates in the 2016 presidential election. Page served on the special counsel’s team on a short detail, returning back to the FBI’s Office of General Counsel in July 2017,” Fox News reported.

“Page, during her time at the FBI, was a deputy of former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe, who was long criticized by Trump and congressional Republicans for his ties to the Democratic Party. McCabe’s wife received donations during a failed 2015 Virginia Senate run from a group tied to a Clinton ally, former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe — all while the Clinton email probe was underway.”

So, is this a conflict of interest? More evidence of just how much of a morass the swamp really is? Overthinking a text message? Or none of the above?

Well, the simple answer is that we don’t know, inasmuch as Strzok, Page and everyone else around them have tried to denude these text messages of all context. Strzok’s appearance before Congress certainly didn’t elucidate much, although it may have inspired plenty of GIFs.

However, if this is true, Page was compromised from the beginning — and that’s a serious problem for anyone trying to push this as mere Jim Garrison-esque conspiracy theorizing. Time for answers, folks.


NY Post Bombshell Report Means Rosenstein Massively Rigged Cohen Trial

by Lisa Payne-Naeger


Sometimes I wonder if Donald Trump knew what he was really getting himself into when he decided to run for president and drain the swamp.

Everywhere he’s turned he has met roadblocks, opposition and betrayal as he tries to infuse policy he thinks will make America great again.

And ever since he was accused of colluding with Russia to sway the 2016 election, the constant turn of events have played out like a bad daytime drama. The latest twist in the plot centers around Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, and if reports are true, he could be in a heap of trouble.

On Saturday, Michael Goodwin wrote in the New York Post that Rosenstein ordered United States Attorney Geoffrey Berman to recuse himself from the investigation into the Michael Cohen case, which in turn would leave his office staffed with Obama administration holdovers from Preet Bharara’s tenure as Berman’s predecessor.

Berman was appointed to the Southern District of New York position by President Trump after he fired Preet Bharara, an Obama appointee.

Since his firing, Preet has made his feelings known that he is not a Trump supporter. The bias is clear. Looks like the president made a good call on that one. Chris Strohm of Bloomberg reports the significance of this move as they allege the strings of this case are being pulled not by the Justice Department, but by prosecutors in the Southern District of New York.

“Cohen’s guilty plea was secured as part of an investigation led by the U.S. attorney’s office in Manhattan, not by Special Counsel Mueller or Justice Department headquarters, another frequent target of the president’s derision. Instead, the deal was made by Robert Khuzami, deputy U.S. attorney for the New York office,” he wrote.

“But neither Rosenstein nor Mueller is calling the shots for the investigation in New York, according to two people familiar with the matter. The U.S. attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York, commonly known as SDNY, has the independence to take investigative steps and charge people without approval from Rosenstein, one of the people said.

So while Rosenstein was consulted about Cohen’s plea, which implicated Trump in campaign finance crimes, he didn’t sign off on it or approve it, the person said. It’s not clear whether Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s recusal from Mueller’s probe extends to the investigation in Manhattan.”

To sum up the significance of this move, let’s just say that the SDNY is now driving the bus on any developing investigation into the Cohen case. While the Justice Department still holds oversight as all U.S attorneys still answer to Rosenstein, previously the SDNY has enjoyed independence of operation outside the U.S. Attorney’s office.

And the lines of communication are open and free between SDNY prosecutors and investigators in Robert Mueller’s office.

Bloomberg also states: “Rosenstein made the decision to give the Cohen case to SDNY following a referral from Mueller. That also ensured the investigation could continue even if Trump somehow managed to fire the special counsel, a politically dangerous move that many Republicans have warned the president to avoid.”

So, if it is true that Rosenstein intentionally moved the trial to SDNY, it might be more than a suspicious coincidence that a Trump-appointed attorney was ordered to recuse himself from the case leaving it to less-unbiased attorneys general.

What a mess and an endless saga of betrayal. Trump appointed Jeff Sessions as Attorney General in February of 2017, only to have Sessions recuse himself from the Russia investigations in the beginning of March of that year.

This left Rod Rosenstein in charge of overseeing the Russia investigations and he appointed Robert Mueller as Special Prosecutor in May of 2017. Since that time there has been no evidence of Russian collusion, but the Mueller team has bull dogged members of Trumps inner circle and charged them with various unrelated crimes.

You can’t make this stuff up, folks. These latest allegations are almost a kin to jumping the shark for television sweeps week.

I guess we will see who wins in the ratings race in November.



Kansans in for another Sizeable Rate Increase from KCPL (Updated)

by Allen Williams



I received a card several days ago from KCPL notifying customers of another pending rate increase (Docket No 18-KCPE- -480-RTS) before the Kansas Corporate Commission (KCC). What is proposed for those using 1.366 kilowatt-hours in summer months or 833 Kilowatt-hours in winter will see a $7.29 per month increase excluding property tax rebasing and $9.19 per month including property tax rebasing.  It’s approximately a 4.5 percent increase while inflation is only 2.9% that will go into effect Dec 2018. The KCPL 'justification' lists the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act as a reason for a decrease in KCPL's revenue requirement."  The rate proposal sounds like an opportunity for the utility to cash in on the Trump tax cut and recover lost revenue from not being able to hire illegal aliens. 

Ratepayers should keep in mind that KCPL is part of not only Westar but Great Plains Energy also.  Retirees and low income people will be hard pressed to pay the higher rates which should work well for cities like Overland Park who have the desire for upward development.

What was promised from the first KCPL merger?

Fox4KC reports:  “They moved out right at the time KCP&L was changing its billing, aimed at improving the amount customers on budget billing paid per month.  So the Dehnckes got hit with a higher monthly amount plus the yearly adjustment for what their past payments hadn't covered. The result was a whopping $900 bill. "I never had an electricity bill that high. I thought that was a misunderstanding," Dehncke said.”

KCPL already gets additional rate surcharges from ECA Energy cost Adjustment) for FUEL expenses between Billing Cycles, EER (Energy Efficiency Rider you Pay for inefficiencies KCPLdoesn't), PTS (property tax surcharge),TDC (time of day power usage between months). And lest we forget, local government also profits from KCPL rate increases with Overland Park Franchise fee, Overland Park Sales Tax (1.125%) and Johnson County Sales tax (1.475%)

KCPL has forced acceptance of their Smart meters which feature two way communications that would allow them to adjust their cost factors like ECA, EER at will.  According to the Daily Telegraph Smart energy meters are giving readings up to six times too high, a study finds.  You won’t get any credit from the utility, 5000 Utility Customers Class Action Lawsuit Claiming Overbilled 30% to 582%, you will have to sue.

According to the Topeka Capitol Journal: “Officials at Westar Energy and KCP&L say the two companies' merger will provide 15 years of rate stability, and they reject the idea that lawmakers are confused by the complexities of utility regulations.”

That promise didn’t take long to break, just nine years later they’re looking for another major increase. Don't think you can cut electric usage and save money, it just spurs further KCPL rate requests.

The Topeka Capitol Journal further notes; “[Kansas Industrial Consumers Group, which represents large-scale energy users are] ..some of the biggest users of electricity in this state. And their rates, overall, are about 40 percent less than what you and I pay and other businesses pay as consumers. And those dollars, that rate decrease for them, comes directly out of our pockets. Somebody pays for the cost of the system."

Please, utilities aren’t benefiting this industrial conglomerate out of their own pockets. The industrial group has negotiated a better deal based on the large quantities of power consumed.  Lawsuit threats also help to swing a better deal which means the residential consumer is going to wind up paying.

What was promised in the second KCPL merger?

The goal of any energy conglomerate is to control supply as a regulated monopoly and to generate profits as stated in the MERGER TO FORM LEADING ENERGY COMPANY, January 2018 Investor Update.  Great Plains is part of the Sustainable Energy program which includes the UN’s sustainable development program.  The sustainability includes expensive wind power turbine purchase and use at KCPL’s Spearville location as a condition of not being sued by the Sierra club. By the way, KCPL has to pay the people who add power to the grid with their wind turbines which means consumers have to reimburse KCPL.

“the expected financial and operational benefits of the merger to the companies and their shareholders (including cost savings, operational efficiencies and the impact of the anticipated merger on earnings per share..”

Projected net savings from the investor update for the Great Plains Energy conglomerate were stated as 27.8 million in 2018, 110.3 million in 2019 and 143.5 million in 20120.

But these saving were never intended to benefit consumers, they were promises made to the utility investors.  So consumers will have to make good on those promises of investor returns as a condition of being a KCPL customer.  It boils down to the ratepayer being on the hook for company ROI with the full blessings of the utility oversight board.

The 3 member KCC board is made up of political appointments by the Kansas Governor.  It’s a cozy opportunity for various consultants to make their way on to the commission as in the case of Michael C. Moffet, a Lawrence Kansas communications consultant appointed by then Governor Kathleen Sebelius. Consultants are not tantamount to citizen ratepayer oversight of a regulated monopoly and what do communications consultants know about utility management?

The commission makeup is therefore less inclined to regard the complaints of ordinary citizens as in “the Kansas Corporation Commission denied a request to offer public comment [regarding injection wells in Douglas County at that hearing from a Mission Hills woman who has argued that the permitting process being used does not comply with federal rules under the Safe Drinking Water Act.

No public comment is necessary even if federal laws are violated. You can ‘trust’ the respective companies to provide all the ‘necessary’ evidence.

Comments on the proposed KCPL rate hike will be accepted through Oct 17, 2018 up to 5:00pm

Correspondence may be addressed to KCC Commission, Office of Public Affairs and Consumer Protection, 1500 SW Arrowhead Road, Topeka, KS  66604-4027 or call at 1-800-662-0027 or the commissions website at www.kcc.ks.gov

There is a petition for an independent audit to verify KCPL numbers claimed for the rate increase.  For those of you who have had enough as I have please sign the online petition at online petition.










Report: Comey Misled Congress. His FBI Examined Less Than 1% of Hillary Emails

by Cillian Zeal


When he appeared before Congress to explain his investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails, former FBI Director James Comey assured America that his wizards had worked day and night to make sure that most of Hillary Clinton’s emails on Anthony Weiner’s laptop had been scrutinized before Election Day to make sure voters knew the facts.

“And then they worked night after night after night, and they found thousands of new emails, they found classified information on Anthony Weiner,” Comey said.

“Somehow, her emails are being forwarded to Anthony Weiner, including classified information, by her assistant, Huma Abedin. And so they found thousands of new emails and then called me the Saturday night before the election and said thanks to the wizardry of our technology, we’ve only had to personally read 6,000. We think we can finish tomorrow morning, Sunday.”

And so they found that most of it was “duplicates” and nothing new was being found. He assured us all that he had “reviewed all of the communications” and everything was kosher. Or as kosher as it was in the summer, when it wasn’t terribly kosher but you know, whatever. Case closed, right?

Well, not so much. On Thursday, RealClearInvestigations published a piece which revealed “virtually none of his account was true, a growing body of evidence reveals.”

I mean, that could be said about so much that’s Comey-related, but this is particularly interesting.

So, firstly, as for that wizardry stuff: “a technical glitch prevented FBI technicians from accurately comparing the new emails with the old emails. Only 3,077 of the 694,000 emails were directly reviewed for classified or incriminating information.” That’s less than 1 percent.

Or that whole thing about them working shifts like Bullitt protecting Johnny Ross: “Three FBI officials completed that work in a single 12-hour spurt the day before Comey again cleared Clinton of criminal charges.”

The day before? That’s not coincidental at all. It’s almost as if they were rushing to reach a predetermined conclusion which would never happen because James Comey is a man of honor.

“Most of the emails were never examined, even though they made up potentially 10 times the evidence” that had been examined in the case which had originally “exonerated” Clinton, an official with knowledge of the investigation said.

“Yet even the ‘extremely narrow’ search that was finally conducted, after more than a month of delay, uncovered more classified material sent and/or received by Clinton through her unauthorized basement server, the official said,” RealClearInvestigations revealed.

“Contradicting Comey’s testimony, this included highly sensitive information dealing with Israel and the U.S.-designated terrorist group Hamas. The former secretary of state, however, was never confronted with the sensitive new information and it was never analyzed for damage to national security.”

It’s almost like Comey was convinced Hillary would win and didn’t want to do anything to jeopardize it. But it’s not like an FBI official would do something because he was convinced someone would win. No one of his stature would do that, though, right?

“Even though the unique classified material was improperly stored and transmitted on an unsecured device, the FBI did not refer the matter to U.S. intelligence agencies to determine if national security had been compromised, as required under a federally mandated ‘damage assessment’ directive,” RCI noted.

“The newly discovered classified material ‘was never previously sent out to the relevant original classification authorities for security review,’ the official, who spoke to RealClearInvestigations on the condition of anonymity, said.

“Other key parts of the investigation remained open when the embattled director announced to Congress he was buttoning the case back up for good just ahead of Election Day,” they noted. “One career FBI special agent involved in the case complained to New York colleagues that officials in Washington tried to ‘bury’ the new trove of evidence, which he believed contained the full archive of Clinton’s emails — including long-sought missing messages from her first months at the State Department.”

There’s a long list of Comey mistakes in RCI’s investigation, and it’s worth pointing out that RCI is one of the more objective sources that there is. What they point out is that Comey either misled Congress about the extent of the problem, was misled by his own staff or outright lied.

This appears to come dangerously close to perjury, considering what we now know about the matter. What they did was simply disregard the investigation because they wanted it closed before the election, lest they be accused of negatively affecting Clinton’s chances for election.

Whoops.



The White House under Trump

submitted by LeRoy C


On Friday, the Trump administration released their annual report to Congress on White House Office Personnel.  It includes the name, status, salary and position title of all 377 White House employees.

The report also said that Trump decided not to take a dime of his salary; instead he donated it to an amazing cause! See below.
 
The report also showed that President Trump is far better at saving money than Obama was. The total annual White House salaries under Trump are 35.8 million vs. $40.9 million under Obama, a savings of $5.1 million.  Here are some other key findings:
 
There are 110 fewer employees on White House staff under Trump than under Obama at this point in their respective presidencies.
 
Nineteen fewer staffers are also dedicated to The First Lady of the United States (FLOTUS).  Currently, there are only two staffers dedicated to Melania Trump vs. 22 staffers who served Michelle Obama (FY2009).
 
However, it's what the report said Trump did with this salary that has everyone talking.
 
Instead of taking his salary, Trump donated all $400,000 to the Department of the Interior where it will be used for construction and repair needs at military cemeteries!  AMAZING! It's so great to have a President who loves our brave military men and women so much!
 
Oh, and where's the media coverage of this? That's right, they don't cover anything decent that the President does...

The Real “Fake News” from Government Media

By Scott Lazarowitz



Image credit: Pixabay

Facebook has announced its campaign against “fake news.” But, according to some workers’ own admission, conservatives are being censored.

And Google also wants to censor “fake news.” But Google also was shown to treat conservative websites, but not liberal ones, as “fake news.”

The same thing seems to be going on with Twitter. And again, conservatives are complaining.

But who is to decide what is “fake news”? Who will be Facebook and Google’s sources for real news?

In 2013 the U.S. Senate considered a new shield law to protect journalists. In the lawmakers’ attempts to narrow the definition of a journalist, some Senators including Sen. Dianne Feinstein only wanted to include reporters with “professional qualifications.”

“Professional” publications such as the New York Times, the “Paper of Record,” would apparently be protected.

So one can conclude that the New York Times can be a source of “real” news for Facebook or Google, despite all the Timeserrors, screw-ups, and corrections, right?  According to one NYT former reporter, the Times has been a “propaganda megaphone” for war. Also a partner with the CIA to promote Obama’s reelection bid.

Or CNN, “The Most Trusted Name in News” which wins its own “fake news” awards with its errors, screw-ups and corrections.  During the 2016 U.S. Presidential campaign, there were collusion s between then-CNN contributor and DNC operative Donna Brazile, who was outed by WikiLeaks in her giving candidate Hillary Clinton questions in advance for a CNN Town Hall.

Other emails that were leaked to WikiLeaks informed us that reporters obediently followed instructions from the Hillary Clinton campaign on how to cover the campaign. These include reporters from the New York Times such as Maggie Haberman who said the campaign would “tee up stories for us,” and Mark Leibovich, who would email Clinton flunky Jennifer Palmieri for editing recommendations.

And Politico reporter Glenn Thrush asked Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta for approval of stories on Clinton. Thrush was then hired by the New York Times. After Thrush was then suspended from NYT over allegations of sexual misconduct, the Times ended the suspension, stating that while Thrush had “acted offensively,” he would be trained to behave himself. Hmm.

But all this from the 2016 campaign reminded me of the “JournoLists,” the group of news journalists who participated in a private forum online from 2007-2010. The forum was to enable news reporters to discuss news reporting and political issues in private and with candor, but also, it was revealed, to discuss ways to suppress negative news on then-2008 presidential candidate Barack Obama.

For instance, according to the Daily Caller, some members of the group discussed their criticism of a 2008 debate in which Obama was questioned on his association with the controversial Rev. Jeremiah Wright. The Nation‘s Richard Kim wrote that George Stephanopoulos was “being a disgusting little rat snake.” The Guardian‘s Michael Tomasky wrote that “we all have to do what we can to kill ABC and this idiocy.”

Spencer Ackerman, then with the Washington Independent and now of the Daily Beast, wrote, “If the right forces us all to either defend Wright or tear him down, no matter what we choose, we lose the game they’ve put upon us. Instead, take one of them — Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares — and call them racists.

The Nation‘s Chris Hayes wrote, “Our country disappears people. It tortures people. It has the blood of as many as one million Iraqi civilians — men, women, children, the infirmed — on its hands. You’ll forgive me if I just can’t quite dredge up the requisite amount of outrage over Barack Obama’s pastor.”(But has Hayes criticized Obama’s assassination program, or Obama’s bombings or the blood on Obama’s hands? Just askin’)

In an open letter, according to the Daily Caller, several of the JournoList members called the ABC debate a “revolting descent into tabloid journalism,” because of the moderators’ legitimate questions on Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

So, in today’s Bizarro World, objectively questioning a candidate on a controversial issue is now “tabloid journalism,” but making things up like “Trump-Russia collusion” and repeating the propaganda over and over – that’s not “tabloid journalism.”

The JournoLists also included reporters from Time, the Baltimore Sun, the New Republic, Politico, and Huffington Post.

Now, are those the sources of “real news” that Facebook, Google and Twitter want to rely upon to combat “fake news”?

And who exactly were the “JournoLists” promoting? Obama?

Regarding Obama’s own crackdown on actual journalism, Fox News reporter James Rosen was accused by the feds of being a “co-conspirator” with State Department leaker Stephen Jin-Woo Kim in violating the Espionage Act.  Rosen’s correspondences with Kim were seized by Obama’s FBI, along with Rosen’s personal email and phone records. The FBI also used records to track Rosen’s visits to the State Department.

Apparently, then-attorney general Eric Holder went “judge-shopping” to find a judge who would approve subpoenaing Rosen’s private records, after two judges rejected the request.

Commenting on James Rosen and the FBI’s abuse of powers, Judge Andrew Napolitano observed that “this is the first time that the federal government has moved to this level of taking ordinary, reasonable, traditional, lawful reporter skills and claiming they constitute criminal behavior.”

And there was the Obama administration’s going after then-CBS News investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson, possibly for her reporting on Benghazi and Fast and Furious. Attkisson finally resigned from CBS news out of frustration with the company’s alleged pro-Obama bias and with CBS’s apparently not airing her subsequent reports.

In 2013 CBS News confirmed that Attkisson’s computers had been “accessed by an unauthorized, external, unknown party on multiple occasions.” In 2015 Attkisson sued the Obama administration, claiming to have evidence which proves the computer intrusions were connected to the Obama DOJ.

In Attkisson’s latest lawsuit update, after her computer was returned to her following the DOJ Inspector General’s investigation, her forensics team now believes her computer’s hard drive was replaced by a different one.

Now back to “fake news.”

After Donald Trump locked up the Republican Presidential nomination in May, 2016, there were significant events in the next two months. Fusion GPS and former British spy Christopher Steele colluded to get opposition research on behalf of Hillary Clinton, the FBI applied for FISA warrant to spy on Trump campaign associates, and Donald Trump, Jr., Paul Manafort and Jared Kushner had a possibly set-up meeting with a Russian lawyer at Trump Tower.

Also within that same period, the DNC claimed that its computers were hacked but the DNC wouldn’t let FBI investigate. The Washington Post published an article claiming, with no evidence presented, that “Russian government hackers” took DNC opposition research on Trump.

It was very shortly after the November, 2016 Presidential election that the Washington Post published an article on a “Russian propaganda effort to spread ‘fake news’ during the election.” To escalate the media’s censorship campaign perhaps?

The campaign against “fake news” coincided with Obama minions at FBI, DOJ and CIA apparently panicking over a possible Trump presidency and allegedly abusing their powers to attempt to take down Trump.

So the news media seem to be on a crusade to fabricate “Trump-Russia collusion” and repeat it over and over, and to vilify, ignore and squash actual investigative research and reporting on what exactly the FBI and DOJ bureaucrats have been doing. Call such real investigative reporting “fake news,” “conspiracy theory,” and so forth.

In the end, Facebook, Twitter and Google might want to reconsider relying on the mainstream news media led by the New York Times, the Washington Post and CNN, and instead include citizen journalists and non-government-sycophant media to provide news and information.

UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh has noted that the Founders generally viewed the freedom of the Press to apply to every citizen to print, publish or express accounts of events. We really need to highlight that kind of old-fashioned, honest journalism.

Scott Lazarowitz is a libertarian writer and commentator. Please visit his blog.





Scott Lazarowitz is a libertarian writer and commentator. Please visit his blog. The article is republished under a 2018 Creative Commons License. 









This was too good not to share

Submitted by LeRoy C


“Remember when Donald Trump was business partners with the Russian government and his company got 53 million from the Russian government investment fund called Rusnano that was started by Vladimir Putin and is referred to as “Putin’s Child”?

Oh wait, that wasn’t Trump it was John Podesta.

Remember when Donald Trump received 500 thousand for a speech in Moscow and paid for by Renaissance Capital, a company tied to Russian Intelligence Agencies?

Oh wait, that was Bill Clinton.

Remember when Donald Trump approved the sale of 20% of US uranium to the Russians while he was Secretary of State which gave control of it to Rosatom the Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation?

Oh wait, that was Hillary Clinton.

Remember when Donald Trump lied about that and said he wasn’t a part of approving the deal that gave the Russians 1/5 of our uranium, but then his emails were leaked showing he did lie about it?

Oh wait, that was Hillary Clinton and John Podesta.

Remember when Donald Trump got 145 million dollars from shareholders of the uranium company sold to the Russians?

Oh wait, that was Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation.

Remember when Donald Trump accepted millions in donations from Russian Oligarchs like the chairman of a company that’s part of the Russian Nuclear Research Cluster, the wife of the mayor of Moscow, and a close pal of Putin’s?

Oh wait, that was the Clinton Foundation.

Remember when Donald Trump failed to disclose all those donations before becoming the Secretary of State, and it was only found out when a journalist went through Canadian tax records?

Oh wait, that was Hillary Clinton.

Remember when Donald Trump told Mitt Romney that the 80s called and it wanted its Russian policy back. The Cold War is over?

Oh wait, that was President Obama.

Remember when Trump got caught on a hot mic telling the Russian ambassador he’d have much more flexibility after the elections, and the ambassador said he’d pass it on to Putin?

Oh wait, that was Obama.”

Emails, IG, server. They have it all.


http://fourwinds10.com/siterun_data/government/fraud/deep_state_-_shadow_gov_-_ses/news.php?q=1532108423

http://www.stage2omega.com/this-was-too-good-not-to-share/






The Clinton Cabal aka: The Clinton Foundation An Incestuous Club

by Buster Hyde USMC/Ret


If this is HALF true it is already more scandalous than I had imagined. Funny, I never read much about this in the mainstream corporate media.

From 2001 to 2005 there was an ongoing investigation into the Clinton Foundation. A Grand Jury had been empaneled.
Governments from around the world had donated to the “Charity” known as the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation


Yet, from 2001 to 2003 NOT EVEN 1 of those “Donations” to the Clinton Foundation were declared.

hmm, you think an honest investigator would be able to figure this out.  Guess who took over this investigation in 2002?  Bet you can’t guess.

None other than James “Wassup Homey?” Comey.  Now, that’s interesting, isn’t it? 

FBI Director Comey was board member of HSBC – Clinton Foundation & Drug Cartel ‘bank of choice’  21stcenturywire.com/2016/07/13/fbi…


What many are not aware of is the political and organizational links between Hillary Clinton and James Comey behind the curtain of international high finance.  Many are unaware that Comey served on the board of banking giant HSBC (aka ‘international drugs & terrorism money laundering clearing house’) before parachuting softly into the head of the FBI in 2013.

That’s only the beginning…

It appears that James Comey (who is actually a lawyer by trade) also has long history of cases ending favorable to Clintons, including the case of Sandy Berger, a former Clinton Administration aid.


During the Berger probe, Comey said publicly that ‘we take issues of classified information very seriously’, all the while seeming to undermine the scope of the investigation   – presumably to protect the Clintons:


2004, Comey, then deputy atty general in Justice Dept, apparently limited the scope of criminal investigation of Sandy Berger, which left out fmr Clinton admn officials who may have coordinated w/Berger in his removal &destruction of classified records from the National Archives.

The documents were relevant to "accusations that the Clinton administration was negligent in the build-up to the 9/11 terrorist attack.”

“Curiously, Berger, Lynch and Cheryl Mills all worked as partners in the Washington law firm Hogan & Hartson,

..which prepared tax returns for the Clintons & did patent work for a software firm that played a role in the private email server Hillary used when she was secretary of state.”

Hogan & Hartson in Va filed a patent trademark request on May 19, 2004, for Denver-based MX Logic Inc., the computer software firm that developed the email encryption system used to manage Clinton’s private email server beginning in July 2013.
washingtonian.com/2011/12/12/how…

1999, Bill Clinton nominated Loretta Lynch for 1st of her 2 terms as US attorney for the Eastern District of New York, a position she held until she joined "Hogan & Hartson" in March 2002 to become "a partner" in the firm’s Litigation Practice Group.” opensecrets.org/revolving/sear…Many are unaware b4 Comey was installed by Obama as FBI Dir, he was on the board at HSBC Bank – a bank implicated in international money laundering, incl laundering of billions on behalf of international drugs & narcotics trafficking cartels.

Many are unaware b4 Comey was installed by Obama as FBI Dir, he was on the board at HSBC Bank – a bank implicated in international money laundering, incl laundering of billions on behalf of international drugs & narcotics trafficking cartels.  
Also Forbes points out Comey was at the key choke-point during the case involving dodgy auditor KPMG which followed on by the HSBC criminal case:

Auditor KPMG which followed on by the HSBC criminal case:

If Comey, & his boss Atty Gen Alberto Gonzalez, had made a different decision about KPMG back in 2005, KPMG would not have been around to miss all the illegal acts HSBC & Standard Chartered SCBFF +% were committing on its watch.

Bloomberg reported in 2007 that back in June of 2005, "Comey was the man thrust into the position of deciding whether KPMG would live or die for its criminal tax shelter violations.”

So according to the establishment narrative, Comey was the one who will “keep an eye on the banks” & “help stamp out corruption,” while the opposite seemed to happen.

Comey was he put in place to stop corruption, or to enable it?  His record certainly warrants some study on this point.
It seems that our beloved Leaking & Lying former FBI Director was also a director & board member of HSBC, which is "tightly connected to the Clinton Foundation."

Check out some of these links:  hsbc.com/news-and-insig…

“Mr. Comey’s appointment will be for an initial 3-yr term which, subject to re-election by shareholders, will expire at the conclusion of the 2016 Annual General Meeting.”

 
“Clinton foundation received up to $81,000,000.00 million dollars from clients of controversial HSBC bank” (where James Comey was sitting on their board - "weird" I Know right..!?)

It’s like a revolving door of ca$h and "special projects" that the "bank" & the "charity" known as the Clinton Foundation are involved in.This is the same HSBC accused of laundering drug cartel money, was heavily involved in the LIBOR scandal, and who knows what else, and all while our esteemed FBI Director James “she didn’t intend it” Comey was part of the senior leadership.

But...I Digress.

BTW,Guess who was transferred in to the IRS to run the "Tax Exemption Branch" of the IRS? (You know like for "non-profit charity organizations" like oh...say The Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation)

Your friend and mine,..our favorite person in the whole world (HINT: if you are aTea Party mbr, Pro-Life or a 'True the Vote' supporter)……. ding, ding, ding, ding via @YouTube

None Other Than
Lois -I -Plead -The -5th Lerner. 

Hauled b4 Congress, Lerner said:  “I have NOT done anything wrong, I have NOT broken ANY laws, I have NOT violated ANY IRS rules &res, & I have NOT provided false info to this or any other congressional committee.”  She then invoked her 5th Amendment & refused 2 answer ANY questions

Obama had the audacity to pre-judge the outcome of a DOJ (fake) "investigation" of IRS abuses against conservative groups, proclaiming "there's not a smidgen of corruption" – by which he seems to mean not a "scintilla of criminality." 

This "family" however, is not done growing.

So, Comey is at the bank, Lynch is at the law firm, Lerner is at the IRS and Obama was at the wheelhouse sharing the "wheel" w/Hillary herself....But Wait! That's Not All....

It gets better, well not really "better" in a good way, but I am sure this is all just a series of strange "coincidences", ...right? or....no?

Guess who ran the Tax Division inside the Department of Injustice from 2001 to 2005?  No, really....take a guess...

None other than our favorite Lawyer (abt to get burned) the Assistant Attorney General of the United States,  Rod Rosenstein.
justice.gov/tax/criminal-t…
Now, THAT IS interesting, ....isn’t it? 

And now that this incestuous, slobbering lust for power & money affair is nearly a "family"...it's not quite there yet.  "Will the next family member step forward please?"

Guess who was the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation during this exact same time-frame?  I know, it’s "a miracle"
just "a coincidence",  just "an anomaly" in statistics and chances,

Why it's none other than James Comey's "Mentor" and Herman Muenster-Wannabe: "Robert Mueller."
Yes "WAY!" 
 
OK Quick Quiz On What We Learned (hopefully)

~What do all casting characters have in common?

Answer:  They were ALL briefed and/or were front line investigators re: the Clinton Foundation Investigation.  Now that’s a YUUGE coincidence.....right?

 Fast forward to 2009:
~James "I don't Leak" Comey leaves the Justice Department to go & cash-in at Lockheed Martin.
~Hillary's running the State Dept, on her own personal email server out of a bathroom closet in her home.
~The Uranium1 “issue” comes to HRCs attention .

Like all good public servants do, you know looking out for America’s best interest, Hillary decides to support the decision to approve sale of 20% of US Uranium to no other than, those rascally Russians.

Now you would think that this is a fairly straight up deal...except it wasn’t, the People got absolutely nothing out of it.
However, b4to the sale approval, an Arkansas former Gov "Cigar-Stuffin-Slick-Willy"  aka: Former US President & Hubby 2 Hillary (& Head of Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation) goes to Moscow, is paid 500K for a 30min speech then meets w/Vladimir Putin at his home for a few hours.

Yup.That "Putin"

Same Putin that was helping @realDonaldTrump become the 45th @POTUS destroying Crooked Hillary by "spying" and "Colluding" and anything else that CNN & the DNC & Hillary can think of. (even Russian chicks peeing on ea othr just 4fun) thegatewaypundit.com/2017/10/photos…

Here's a question/answer that will make you want to punch a liberal in the pie-hole. You ready for this one?
Alright then: Guess who was the FBI Director during this time frame?  Mueller!

Yep, THAT Robert Mueller. Oh, but I am far, far from the MEAT of this one:  Robert "Special Prosecutor" Who Is Telling US To: "Sssshhhhh, Be Vewy Vaaawy Qwuit..I'm Hunting Wusshins!"

HE HAND DELIVERED a Uranium Sample FROM HILLARY to Moscow in 2009.

(Yes, Moscow IS IN RUSSIA)

If he had 1/4 ounce of integrity he would have recused himself before taking this post based on overwhelming conflicts of interest … But so too would :
~James Comey
~Rod Rosenstein
~Andrew McCabe
~Loretta Lynch
and on...and on...and on...

They ARE ONE BIG INCESTUOUS FAMILY!

The ARTICLE continues HERE