Solarbird (solarbird) wrote,
Solarbird
solarbird

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good morning, it's 4 february 2017

Yes, I'm posting this a couple of hours early, it's huge and also I don't want to forget and also don't want to sit on it for another couple of hours.

Brave heart, Boston - Seattle to the motherfucking rescue. See item 20. Better yet: CNN IS REPORTING COMPLIANCE WITH COURT ORDER. They're shopping for a counter-injunection but GUESS WHO JUST BLINKED and GUESS WHO STILL HAS A JUDICIARY, MOTHERFUCKERS.

None of this shit is over, they're still going to keep trying to break it, because by fascist political theory, as soon as they win an election they rule everything unquestioned forever. (Or, at least, until the next election.) No, seriously, see item 23, that's what they're saying.

But round one goes to the fucking rule of law, you fascist assholes.

Also, fiscal corruption and rules changes for Mr. Trump's friends (IN HIS OWN WORDS), the CIA's new deputy director ran a black-ops torture site before those got shut down (and also destroyed evidence), more data being disappeared from Federal websites, and more. It's been a busy day.


----- 1 -----
Former Norwegian Prime Minister held for questioning at Dulles Airport
by Tom Roussey/ABC7 WJLA

http://wjla.com/news/local/former-norwegian-prime-minister-held-for-questioning-at-dulles-airport

DULLES, Va. (ABC7) — A former prime minister of Norway tells ABC7 he was questioned and prevented from leaving Dulles Airport for about an hour Tuesday, apparently because he had visited Iran in 2014.

Kjell Magne Bondevik served as prime minister of Norway two separate times, from 1997-2000 and 2001-2005.

He flew into Dulles Airport from Europe Tuesday afternoon and says he was not immediately allowed to leave after customs agents saw in his passport that he had been to Iran.

He showed ABC7 that his passport also indicates he is the former prime minister of Norway, a U.S. ally.


----- 2 -----
Another EO coming?
Seen on Twitter - 3 February 2017

This is almost funny https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-moves-to-undo-dodd-frank-law-1486101602/
https://twitter.com/fmanjoo/status/827546078425669632

Quoted material (via an image):
Mr. Trump will use a memorandum to ask the labor secretary to consider rescinding a rule set to go into effect in April that orders retirement advisers, overseeing about $3 trillion in assets, to act in the best interest of their clients, Mr. Cohn said in the White House interview. He said the rule limits consumer choice.

Also quoted here (more extensively):
https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/256313/


----- 3 -----
Exxon’s Seven-Year Campaign To Kill An Anti-Corruption Rule Finally Worked
With Republican control of the government, the stars finally aligned for ExxonMobil to do away with an SEC rule it has been fighting for years.
Dino Grandoni
BuzzFeed News Reporter
3 February 2017

https://www.buzzfeed.com/dinograndoni/exxon-transparency?utm_term=.syq619qbq#.loJobWA7A

Long before Rex Tillerson made the rounds on Capitol Hill this winter to convince senators to confirm him as secretary of state, he took a trip to the Hart Senate Office Building to meet with then-Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana regarding a provision the senator wanted added to a 2010 bill that would affect how tight-lipped oil companies are allowed to be about business dealings.

Lugar, the top Republican on the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations at the time, was pushing to make into law an anti-corruption rule that would force companies that extract oil, gas, and other resources in the ground around the world — ones like ExxonMobil, the largest US energy company — to disclose how much money they paid nations for the right to drill and pump.


----- 4 -----
5 Sketchy Facts About Trump's Pick for USDA Chief
From the Confederacy to cronyism, here's what you should know about former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue.
Tom Philpott Jan. 23, 2017 3:36 PM
Mother Jones

http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2017/01/some-sketchy-things-trunps-usda-pick-did-while-governor-georgia

Amid the pomp and tumult of inauguration week, you may have missed that President (whoa) Donald Trump at last made his final Cabinet pick, naming former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue US Department of Agriculture secretary. At a televised candlelight dinner on the eve of the inauguration, Trump mused on his long and zigzagging USDA search that started and ended with Perdue, who emerged as a front-runner right after the election and then faded as the president-elect auditioned a succession of candidates for the post (transcript by Politico):

He came into my office two months ago. Since then, I saw 10 people that everybody liked, politically correct, and I kept thinking back to Sonny Perdue, a great, great farmer. He loves to farm; he knows everything about farming, knows everything about agriculture. He’s been successful in farming. He knows the good stuff from the bad stuff.

But people came into my office, and they said, 'I am really wanting the job.' I said, 'Let me ask you a question: Do you have any experience with farms or agriculture?' 'No sir, I don't.' I said, 'Have you ever seen a farm?' The one gentleman, who is a great guy, we'll find something else. But I can't make him the secretary of agriculture.

The "politically correct" bit is, no doubt, a reference to the fact that Trump's 22-member cabinet and top staff is largely, like Perdue, white and male: It contains just four women, one African American, and not a single Latino. Indeed, Trump will be the first president since Ronald Reagan to enter office without having appointed a Latino to a cabinet-level post. (Reagan appointed a Latino to his Cabinet in his second term.)

...

In the end, Trump chose a white, southern male for the job. And not just any white southerner. Here are a few things to know about Perdue:

1. He was a big fan of the Confederacy. As I reported a few weeks ago, Perdue displayed a disturbing nostalgia for the Confederacy while governor (2003-2011)—not a great look for the incoming head of a federal department that, in 1999, settled a landmark lawsuit charging systemic USDA discrimination against black farmers between 1983 and 1997, agreeing to pay out $1.25 billion to harmed farmers.

2. He enacted severe voter ID laws. Voter fraud is vanishingly rare, and laws requiring photo identification at polling places target black voters with "almost surgical precision," a federal court ruled last year. In 2005, Perdue signed into law one of the nation's first "strict" ID laws—the very first of many in former Confederate states—requiring people to either present a current photo identification card or be denied the vote. Perdue vigorously defended it through several legal challenges. It remains in place.

3. He championed immigration crackdowns. In 2006, then-Gov. Perdue mashed up the voter-fraud myth with another racially tinged fantasy, this one fervently held by Perdue's new boss, Trump: that undocumented immigrants burden taxpayers by siphoning welfare benefits. "It is simply unacceptable for people to sneak into this country illegally on Thursday, obtain a government-issued ID on Friday, head for the welfare office on Monday and cast a vote on Tuesday," he declared. He backed up his harsh words with a crackdown on undocumented workers. Coupled with the George W. Bush administration's simultaneous get-tough efforts, the Georgia law worked perhaps too well. Here's an Associated Press piece from September 2006:


----- 5 -----
Neofascist Richard Spencer tweets Nazi revenge comic
2 February 2017

[He's Not A Nazi, but he Sieg Heils and gets Nazi salutes from his followers and oh just tweeted an anti-antifascist cartoon wherein the Nazis are the good guys. But TOTALLY NOT A NAZI. This link is to a Tumblr post with a screencap; I verified it was real.]

http://ysabelfaerie.tumblr.com/post/156759377375/rasec-wizzlbang


----- 6 -----
Government reveals more than 100,000 visas revoked due to travel ban
By Rachel Weiner and Justin Jouvenal February 3 at 12:40 PM
The Washington Post

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/government-reveals-over-100000-visas-revoked-due-to-travel-ban/2017/02/03/7d529eec-ea2c-11e6-b82f-687d6e6a3e7c_story.html

Over 100,000 visas have been revoked as a result of President Trump’s ban on travel from seven predominantly Muslim countries, an attorney for the government revealed in Alexandria federal court Friday.

The number came out during a hearing in a lawsuit filed by attorneys for two Yemeni brothers who arrived at Dulles International Airport last Saturday. They were coerced into giving up their legal resident visas, they argue, and quickly put on a return flight to Ethiopia.

“The number 100,000 sucked the air out of my lungs,” said Simon Sandoval-Moshenberg of the Legal Aid Justice Center, who represents the brothers.

The government attorney, Erez Reuveni from the Justice Department’s Office of Immigration Litigation, could not say how many people with visas were sent back to their home countries from Dulles in response to the travel ban. However, he did say that all people with green cards who came through the airport have been let into the United States.


----- 7 -----
Neil Gorsuch’s Disturbing Record on LGBTQ Rights
Feb. 1 2017 2:13 PM
By Mark Joseph Stern
Slate

http://www.slate.com/blogs/outward/2017/02/01/neil_gorsuch_s_disturbing_record_on_lgbtq_rights.html

Neil Gorsuch, Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, is an ultra-conservative jurist with a sterling resume, a genial wit, and a great shot at becoming our next justice. Gorsuch currently serves on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit, and his opinions suggest a reliably right-leaning interpretation of the law. But Gorsuch has never penned an LGBTQ rights decision or spoken at length about his legal views on the matter. That has led some progressives to speculate that Gorsuch might be persuaded to agree with an originalist argument in support of LGBTQ rights.

Optimism is always refreshing in these darks times—but here, I don’t think it’s warranted. It’s easy to fill in the gaps of Gorsuch’s public positions and conclude that he will vote the same way his idol Justice Antonin Scalia did: against the rights of LGBTQ people.

Start with gay rights and specifically same-sex marriage. Despite the relative novelty of legal same-sex unions, the constitutional question here should be easy—even for an originalist like Gorsuch. Both conservative originalists (like Steven Calabresi) and liberal originalists (like Akhil Amar and Elizabeth Wydra) have concluded that the 14th Amendment protects same-sex couples’ right to marry. But Gorsuch appears to disagree. In a 2005 National Review op-ed, Gorsuch mocked the court battle for same-sex marriage as a political fight dressed in constitutional garb.


----- 8 -----
Trump says will cut "a lot out of Dodd-Frank" because "friends of mine that have nice businesses, they can't borrow"
CNBC on Twitter
3 Feb 2017

https://twitter.com/CNBCnow/status/827547220652220416

Video. Also links to story here, but watch the video at the Twitter link to confirm the quote.

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/02/03/trump-says-he-will-address-dodd-frank-and-the-banking-industry-with-ceo-council.html


----- 9 -----
Some Nexus cards revoked on both sides of border following U.S. executive order
Border agencies in Canada and U.S. won't confirm travel ban on majority-Muslim countries to blame
By Shanifa Nasser, CBC News Posted: Feb 03, 2017 5:00 AM ET

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/nexus-cards-revoked-1.3964819

Less than one week after U.S. President Donald Trump's travel ban against citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries, two men — one a Canadian resident and another an American resident — suddenly had their Nexus cards revoked, both on the same day.

The surprise revocations came Wednesday and have both men raising questions about whether their countries of origin are the reason.

One of the men is a Syrian man with permanent resident status who has lived in Toronto since 2012 and regularly travels to the United States on business. Like many with roots in Syria, Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, Yemen and Libya, he was relieved to learn that he would not be among those barred from the U.S. by an executive order signed last Friday against passport-holders of those countries.

At least, that's what he thought.

"I knew for a fact that carrying a Syrian passport would eventually be a burden on my shoulders as a professional, as a human," the man told CBC Toronto, unsurprised.

But less than a week after the order was signed, the man who did not want to be identified for fear of repercussions, received a notice from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) letting him know his Nexus card — not set to expire until 2021 — had suddenly been revoked.

'Under the microscope'

"I am a national of Syria and have a very obvious Muslim name," he said, adding that even with his card, he is regularly subjected to secondary screening. "Nothing but being under the microscope every time we travel."

The Toronto man isn't alone. CBC Toronto also spoke to a Seattle-area man of Iranian origin, who received the same notice on Wednesday saying he did not meet the eligibility criteria.

"How come I met the requirements in November?" the 33-year-old asked after receiving the notice.


----- 10 -----
Wyoming Senate votes down bill banning LGBT discrimination
3 February 2017
Caspar Star-Tribune

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — The Wyoming Senate has voted down a bill that would have banned discrimination in employment based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

The Senate's Committee of the Whole voted 17-13 against the bill, indefinitely postponing it. The bill would have allowed exceptions for religious organizations.

The bill's sponsor, Sen. Chris Rothfuss, D-Laramie, says the bill is needed. He says workplace discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people happens in Wyoming.

Other senators argued that they didn't want to see additional classes of people added to the state's anti-discrimination law.


----- 11 -----
The CIA’s New Deputy Director Ran a Black Site for Torture
Glenn Greenwald
2017-02-02

https://theintercept.com/2017/02/02/trumps-cia-chief-selects-major-torture-operative-to-be-agencys-deputy-director/

In May, 2013, the Washington Post’s Greg Miller reported that the head of the CIA’s clandestine service was being shifted out of that position as a result of “a management shake-up” by then-Director John Brennan. As Miller documented, this official – whom the paper did not name because she was a covert agent at the time – was centrally involved in the worst abuses of the CIA’s Bush-era torture regime.

As Miller put it, she was “directly involved in its controversial interrogation program” and had an “extensive role” in torturing detainees. Even more troubling, she “had run a secret prison in Thailand” – part of the CIA’s network of “black sites” – “where two detainees were subjected to waterboarding and other harsh techniques.” The Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on torture also detailed the central role she played in the particularly gruesome torture of detainee Abu Zubaydah.

Beyond all that, she played a vital role in the destruction of interrogation videotapes that showed the torture of detainees both at the black site she ran and other secret agency locations. The concealment of those interrogation tapes, which violated both multiple court orders as well the demands of the 9/11 Commission and the advice of White House lawyers, was condemned as “obstruction” by Commission Chairs Lee Hamilton and Thomas Keane. A special prosecutor and Grand Jury investigated those actions but ultimately chose not to prosecute.

That CIA official’s name whose torture activities the Post described is Gina Haspel. Today, as BuzzFeed’s Jason Leopold noted, CIA Director Mike Pompeo announced that Haspel was selected by Trump to be Deputy Director of the CIA.

This should not come as much of a surprise given that Pompeo himself has said he is open to resurrecting Bush-era torture techniques (indeed, Obama’s CIA Director, John Brennan, was forced to withdraw from the running in late 2008 because of his support for some of those tactics only to be confirmed in 2013). That’s part of why it was so controversial that 14 Democrats – including their Senate Leader Chuck Schumer, Dianne Feinstein, Sheldon Whitehouse and Tim Kaine – voted to confirm Pompeo.


----- 12 -----
Trump seeks to dismantle Dodd-Frank Wall Street rules through orders
Gregory Korte , USA TODAY 1:44 p.m. ET Feb. 3, 2017

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/02/03/through-executive-orders-trump-takes-aim-financial-regulations/97431284/

WASHINGTON — President Trump signed two directives Friday rolling back key financial regulations of the Obama era, including restrictions on Wall Street banks and on financial advisers who sell clients expensive financial products with higher commissions.

...

The two executive actions are:

* An executive order targeting the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act — and especially the so-called Volcker rule prohibiting banks from making speculative investments. The order would direct the secretary of the Treasury to review regulations on financial institutions and report back specific recommendations to the president.

* A presidential memorandum to the secretary of Labor ordering a delay in implementing a rule requiring financial advisers to act in their clients' best interests. The regulation, known as the fiduciary rule, is scheduled to go into effect April 10. Opponents argue that it would discourage financial advisers from working with low-net worth clients.


----- 13 -----
Follow-up on reported Secret Service overnight firings
On Twitter
3 February 2017

I have confirmed that the Chief of Information Security at White House forced to resign. Was error in tagging him as Secret Service. 1/2
Steve Clemons ‏@SCClemons - https://twitter.com/SCClemons/status/827554848786759681

Others - not sure how many - attached to White House security/cyber security/info security - resigned last night & escorted out of EEOB
Steve Clemons ‏@SCClemons - https://twitter.com/SCClemons/status/827555376929394689

It is the CISO function, at minimum, in WH that saw forced resignations last night. These folks work w/@SecretService but not of Secret Svc
Steve Clemons ‏@SCClemons - https://twitter.com/SCClemons/status/827558963864596480
[Ed: CISO: Chief Information Security Officer]


----- 14 -----
"They're not behaving," POTUS said, and the pool was escorted out of the Oval at 1:20.
Journalist joanne_stocker on Twitter - 3 February 2017

https://twitter.com/joanne_stocker/status/827589297884782592




----- 15 -----
Trump aides hold 'Kumbaya meeting' with reporters
by Dylan Byers @CNNMoney February 3, 2017: 2:57 PM ET

http://money.cnn.com/2017/02/03/media/bannon-priebus-reporters/index.html

While President Trump's White House publicly berates the media, behind the scenes his top advisers are going to the media in an effort to tamp down rumors of strife inside the building.

Trump's chief strategist Steve Bannon and chief of staff Reince Priebus met privately on Friday with reporters from The New York Times, The Washington Post and Politico, sources with knowledge of the meeting told CNNMoney.

The purpose of the meeting, as these sources interpreted it, was to push back on recent reports suggesting that Trump's administration was suffering from chaos and confusion amid internal conflicts, especially between Bannon and Priebus, as well as opposition from officials in other parts of the government.

One source who attended described it as a "Kumbaya meeting."

In recent weeks, several outlets have published reports portraying Trump's White House as a chaotic organization beset by power struggles and discord.


----- 16 -----
The little-noticed bombshell in Trump's immigration order
The travel ban got all the headlines, but experts are realizing another provision could clamp down on normal tourism and even diplomats.
By Danny Vinik | Politico
02/03/17 03:26 PM EST

http://www.politico.com/agenda/story/2017/02/trump-vetting-executive-order-immigration-000293

When President Donald Trump issued his executive order on immigration last week, it was the travel ban on seven Muslim-majority countries that dominated headlines—leaving hundreds of people in limbo, provoking airport protests, and raising questions about whether the U.S. was targeting religion in the guise of a new security rule.

But immigration lawyers who have read the order carefully are now increasingly concerned that one of its provisions could have much wider repercussions, affecting literally every foreign visitor to America, from tourists to diplomats.

The little-noticed section, appearing immediately after the travel ban, calls for the government to develop a “uniform screening standard and procedure” for all individuals seeking to enter the United States. As written, it appears to require all visitors to go through the same vetting measures, regardless of where they come from or how long they intend to stay.

If interpreted as broadly as it’s written, “It would basically shut down tourism,” said Stephen Legomsky, the former chief counsel for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services during the Obama administration.

...

But little attention has focused on section four, which directs federal officials to implement a “uniform screening standard and procedure” as part of the “adjudication process for immigration benefits” for all individuals seeking to enter the United States. In immigration parlance, “immigration benefits” refers to any permission granted a foreign visitor, from full-scale refugee resettlement to a passport stamp for tourists visiting Disneyland. That wording is about as broad as it can get, lawyers said, and if taken literally would include every single foreigner coming to the United States. “[It] is basically everything,” said Dan Stein, the president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), a group that supports reducing immigration levels.

“What they are talking about doing has scared the shit out of my members, about the lack of guidance and lack of clarity,” said Ben Johnson, the head of the American Immigration Lawyers Association.

The implications of the order as written are so extreme that most lawyers are convinced that the Trump administration will not adhere to its literal meaning; as with other sections of the order, they expect the White House to stray from the drafted language. But such uncertainty has left lawyers baffled about what the interpretation will actually look like, and wondering whether Trump and his top advisors really do intend to upend the U.S. immigration system—and possibly disrupt global travel altogether.


----- 17 -----
Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner worked to sink LGBT order
Members of the religious right with ties to the Trump administration say they have been led to believe that some changes will still be coming.
By Annie Karni
02/03/17 02:16 PM EST

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/02/ivanka-trump-jared-kushner-lgbt-order-234617

Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump helped lead the charge to scuttle a draft executive order that would have overturned Obama-era enforcements of LGBT rights in the workplace, multiple sources with knowledge of the situation told POLITICO.

A draft executive order on LGBT rights that outlines how to roll back former President Barack Obama’s protections and expand legal exemptions based on religious beliefs has been circulating among journalists and worried progressive groups this week.

But two sources close to Kushner and Ivanka Trump, who have a record of supporting gay rights, said the couple favored putting out a clear statement from the president, promising to uphold the 2014 Obama executive order and stopping the momentum for the turnaround in its tracks.


----- 18 -----
It’s time to make Republicans pay for their supreme hypocrisy
By E.J. Dionne Jr. Opinion writer
The Washington Post
1 February 2017

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/its-time-to-make-republicans-pay-for-their-supreme-hypocrisy/2017/02/01/b5026f24-e8c0-11e6-bf6f-301b6b443624_story.html

You want bipartisanship on Supreme Court nominations? Let’s have a consensus moment around Sen. Ted Cruz’s idea that having only eight Supreme Court justices is just fine.

“There is certainly long historical precedent for a Supreme Court with fewer justices,” the Texas Republican said last year when GOP senators were refusing even to give a hearing to Judge Merrick Garland, President Barack Obama’s nominee.

Cruz cited a Democratic court appointee, Justice Stephen Breyer, to give his case heft. He noted that “Justice Breyer observed that the vacancy is not impacting the ability of the court to do its job.”

If that argument was good in 2016, why isn’t it valid in 2017? After all, some Republicans were willing to keep the seat vacant indefinitely if Hillary Clinton won the presidential election. “I would much rather have eight Supreme Court justices than a justice who is liberal,” Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said in October.

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) went further: “If Hillary Clinton becomes president, I am going to do everything I can do to make sure four years from now, we still got an opening on the Supreme Court.”

Yes, Republicans do have a principle on nominations: When the Supreme Court’s philosophical majority might flip, only Republican presidents should be allowed to appoint justices.


----- 19 -----
USDA removes animal welfare reports from its website
By MARY CLARE JALONICK Associated Press
February 3, 2017 — 3:25pm

http://www.startribune.com/usda-removes-animal-welfare-reports-from-its-website/412715773/

WASHINGTON — The Agriculture Department has removed animal welfare inspection reports, enforcement records and other information about the treatment of animals from its website, citing privacy and other laws.

Tanya Espinosa, a spokeswoman for USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, said the information was removed from the site around 11 a.m. Friday. She would not say if the removal was temporary or permanent in the new Trump administration.

The information is used by advocacy groups and other members of the public to look up information on commercial dog and horse breeders, some of whom have had a history of abuse. The reports included lists of animal welfare violations at those facilities and also at animal testing labs, and whether those violations have been corrected.

In place of the online database is a new message from the department saying it is "implementing actions to remove documents" related to the Animal Welfare Act and the Horse Protection Act that contain personal information.

...

The statement said the documents will still be available through Freedom of Information Act requests, which can be costly for the general public and sometimes take months or years to obtain.


----- 20 -----
Federal judge in Seattle puts nationwide halt to Trump’s immigration order
Originally published February 3, 2017 at 3:48 pm Updated February 3, 2017 at 4:56 pm
The Seattle Times
By Jim Brunner and Jessica Lee
Seattle Times staff reporters

http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/politics/federal-judge-in-seattle-halts-trumps-immigration-order/

A federal judge in Seattle has ordered a halt to enforcement of President Trump’s controversial travel ban on citizens from seven predominantly Muslim nations.

U.S. District Judge James Robart ruled in favor Friday of Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson, who sued to invalidate key provisions of Trump’s executive order. That order indefinitely blocks entry to the United States for Syrian refugees and temporarily suspends entry to citizens of seven majority-Muslim countries.

The temporary restraining order is granted on a nationwide basis, Robart said.

“The Constitution prevailed today,” Ferguson said. “No one is above the law — not even the President.”

Gov. Jay Inslee, writing on Twitter, called it “a tremendous victory for the state of Washington.

“No person, not even the president, is above the law,” Inslee said. “We should feel heartened by today’s victory and more resolute than ever that we are fighting on the right side of history.”


----- 21 -----
Judge issues broad block against Trump's travel ban
Seattle jurist's sweeping order comes hours after Boston court seemed to bless president' s anti-terror immigration halt.
By Josh Gerstein
02/03/17 06:25 PM EST

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/02/trump-travel-ban-legal-win-234634

President Donald Trump's travel ban executive order suffered its most severe legal blow to date Friday, as a federal judge in Seattle blocked the impact of the directive nationwide.

U.S. District Court Judge James Robart ruled in favor of the attorneys general of Washington state and Minnesota on a lawsuit they brought seeking to overturn the order limiting travel to the U.S. by citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries.

"The state has met its burden in demonstrating immediate and irreparable injury," Robart said, according to local press reports.

The temporary ruling from Robart, an appointee of President George W. Bush, appeared to be the most sweeping legal rebuke to the order since Trump issued it a week ago.

"Judge Robart’s decision, effective immediately, effective now, puts a halt to President Trump’s unconstitutional and unlawful executive order. It puts a stop to it immediately, nationwide," Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson told reporters. “What the judge announced today was nationwide; the president’s executive order does not apply."


----- 22 -----
Canada looking at legality of enforcing Trump travel ban on Canadian soil
Legal concerns over ban could run up against customs pre-clearance agreement
By Evan Dyer, CBC News
Posted: Feb 03, 2017 3:15 PM ET

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/pre-clearance-trump-ban-1.3965666

The federal government says it is looking into whether the enforcement of U.S. President Donald Trump's executive order banning entry of certain nationalities to the United States violates Canadian laws.

Trump signed an executive order more than a week ago, restricting entry to the United States for travellers from seven predominantly Muslim countries.

Canada is one of only six countries that has U.S. border agents working on its national territory under a long-standing agreement that allows travellers to pre-clear customs at major Canadian airports and other departure points. The agreement is set to expand under a bill passed by the U.S. Congress in December.

Because those operations by U.S. customs agents are carried out on Canadian soil, they are subject to Canadian laws.

Andrew Gowing, a spokesman for Public Safety Canada, told CBC News, "The government is still in the process of determining what, if any, impact the recent U.S. executive order has on current pre-clearance activities or on the Agreement on Land, Rail, Marine and Air Transport Preclearance" between the countries.

"Any U.S. pre-clearance activities in Canada have to be carried out in a manner consistent with Canadian law, including the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Canadian Bill of Rights and the Canadian Human Rights Act."


----- 23 -----
Trump: I’m President, So No More Protest or Media Accountability
By Jonathan Chait
New York Magazine | February 3, 2017

[See also commentary on modern GOP power theory that I made back in 2008: http://solarbird.livejournal.com/603582.html ]

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/02/trump-im-president-so-no-more-protest-or-accountability.html

Donald Trump is not an autocrat yet, and he may never become one. But his administration continues to broadcast autocratic views on politics. It is worth highlighting some of these statements simply because a kind of discourse that once would have been considered shocking has quickly become routine.

This morning, Trump repeated one of his favorite authoritarian tropes by insisting that protesters against him have been secretly paid — “Professional anarchists, thugs and paid protesters,” he ranted on Twitter. Kellyanne Conway, meanwhile, insists that protests are not democratic. “There’s nothing peaceful and nothing democratic about folks who are out there just trying to re-litigate the election and protesting things they know nothing about,” she tells Sean Hannity. The election result, in Conway’s view, settled all political questions, and any protest against Trump’s policies is therefore undemocratic.


----- 24 -----
"I'm thinking another Kent State might be the only solution"
Quote from GOP county official Dan Adamini

One (Facebook?) version via Angus Johnston Verified account ‏@studentactivism
https://twitter.com/studentactivism/status/827701408061333504

Screencap of version on Twitter:
https://twitter.com/Phil_Lewis_/status/827686827331055616

see also:
"For "a poorly worded tweet," he posted handwritten variants of it THREE TIMES to three separate social media."
https://twitter.com/elfsternberg/status/827723713617371137


----- 25 -----
Trump administration statements against the Seattle ruling, versions 1 and 2
3 February 2017

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C3yiYPmWMAEGKm8.jpg:


https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C3ylL4HVMAEPMFY.jpg:



----- 26 -----
Trust Records Show Trump Is Still Closely Tied to His Empire
By SUSANNE CRAIG and ERIC LIPTON
FEB. 3, 2017 - The New York Times

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/03/us/politics/donald-trump-business.html

Just days before his inauguration, President-elect Donald J. Trump stood beside his tax lawyer at a Midtown Manhattan news conference as she announced that he planned to place his vast business holdings in a trust, a move she said would allay fears that he might exploit the Oval Office for personal gain.

However, a number of questions were left unanswered — including who would ultimately benefit from the trust — raising concerns about just how meaningful the move was.

Now, records have emerged that show just how closely tied Mr. Trump remains to the empire he built.

While the president says he has walked away from the day-to-day operations of his business, two people close to him are the named trustees and have broad legal authority over his assets: his eldest son, Donald Jr., and Allen H. Weisselberg, the Trump Organization’s chief financial officer. Mr. Trump, who will receive reports on any profit, or loss, on his company as a whole, can revoke their authority at any time.

What’s more, the purpose of the Donald J. Trump Revocable Trust is to hold assets for the “exclusive benefit” of the president. This trust remains under Mr. Trump’s Social Security number, at least as far as federal taxes are concerned.

Continue reading the main story
Since his election, there have been widespread calls for Mr. Trump to sell his assets and put the proceeds in a blind trust. He has resisted those calls, stressing that the president has no legal obligation to do so.


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The FCC is stopping 9 companies from providing federally subsidized Internet to the poor
The Washington Post | By Brian Fung February 3 at 4:30 PM

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2017/02/03/the-fcc-is-stopping-9-companies-from-providing-subsidized-broadband-to-the-poor/?utm_term=.8f6504e5961a

Regulators are telling nine companies they won't be allowed to participate in a federal program meant to help them provide affordable Internet access to low-income consumers — weeks after those companies had been given the green light.

The move, announced Friday by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, reverses a decision by his Democratic predecessor, Tom Wheeler, and undercuts the companies' ability to provide low-cost Internet access to poorer Americans. In a statement, Pai called the initial decisions a form of “midnight regulation.”

“These last-minute actions, which did not enjoy the support of the majority of commissioners at the time they were taken, should not bind us going forward,” he said.

The program, known as Lifeline, provides registered households with a $9.25-a-month credit, which can then be used to buy home Internet service. As many as 13 million Americans may be eligible for Lifeline that do not have broadband service at home, the FCC has found. Roughly 900 service providers participate in the Lifeline program.

For Kajeet Inc., one of the companies that was initially granted permission to provide service through Lifeline, the news comes as a blow.

“I’m most concerned about the children we serve,” said Kajeet founder Daniel Neal. “We partner with school districts — 41 states and the District of Columbia — to provide educational broadband so that poor kids can do their homework.”

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