TRUMP is seriously dangerous

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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby Elvis » Thu Jul 18, 2019 4:43 am

"It seems to be what we have now is a political system which has essentially become, for the last thirty or forty years, a war on the human imagination."
(David Graeber)
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Sat Jul 20, 2019 8:38 am

"We All Knew About the Trafficking"-The Untold Story of Trump Model Management (Part 1)
in the world at the time. Casablancas would eventually work for the company as well, as one of their talent agents in Paris. Through his work and his numerous romances with models, he realized that many of the women were growing restless in the low wage, unglamorous existence they had under the stewardship of Eileen Ford, and resented the fact that they often couldn’t afford the clothes they were modeling. Ford ran her agency with an iron fist, imposing curfews and morality clauses on her models, and insisting on chaperones for photo shoots. This code of conduct and strict rules were largely informed by Ford’s own experiences as a model, and her understanding of how predatory the industry could be. She was committed to both protecting her models, and making the industry more professional as a whole. And while Ford could be overbearing, she was also a motherly influence and brought in many of the models she represented into her home to nurture them alongside her 4 children and help them navigate the perils of a notoriously exploitative industry.

Casablancas, who broke away from Ford and started Elite Model Management in 1972, by contrast, offered something different. First, he offered money-much more than models were making under Ford and similar agencies. He also offered the prospect of a more exiting lifestyle unhindered by curfews or morality clauses, where late night partying, drug use and hedonistic pleasures were encouraged. While Ford and her compatriots provided the security of labor protection-such as standardized pay and working hours- Casablancas embraced the increasingly popular principals of unbridled capitalism and neoliberalism. In exchange for employment security he gave them an opportunity to earn money commensurate with their commercial success, and the possibilities were endless.

Casablancas opened Elite Model Management in 1972 with a roster of all-star talent, cementing his reputation as a top tier agency. But within its first year, 2 of his top models were dead. The first was Paula Brenken, who mysteriously dove out a window in a drunken state the night after she told friends she had been raped by a photographer. The next to die was Emmanuel Dano, who became hooked on drugs soon after signing with Elite. According to Casablancas, she was out for a late night drive with several male friends when they attempted to rape her, and fell out of the moving car while trying to fight off her attackers. He said she died instantly. This story raised quite a few eyebrows, in part because it was John Casablancas who discovered her body- lying in her own bed. In both cases there was little police investigation, despite the suspicious circumstances of these deaths-and the fact that the only explanation came from Casablancas.

John Casablancas, a marketing genius, would somehow be able to use those high profile tragedies as good publicity-his agency became the object of fascination, and stories of his models’ exploits became legendary. People in the fashion industry, the media, and the public became obsessed with following their every move, and Casablancas learned the benefits of courting controversy, and using media coverage as a marketing tool. In 1977 Casablancas moved his agency headquarters to New York, and set about stealing as many Ford girls as he could.

Ford struck back, hitting him with a lawsuit for unlawful business practices and beginning a long running legal battle that would become known as “The Model Wars”. For Casablancas, this only solidified his resolve-he would not only take Ford’s girls, he would make them successful beyond their wildest dreams and he would become the number one agency in the world.

As they approached the end of the 1970’s the two men were on very different trajectories. Donald Trump met, and started dating, Czech model Ivana Zelníčková- a woman who, despite his later claims that she was a supermodel, was in reality barely making a living posing in her bikini at trade shows at the time they met. Ivana and Trump would marry in 1978 and their first child, Donald Jr., would be born 8 months later.

While Trump set about his life as a not particularly involved husband and father, John Casablancas became a staple of the New York gossip circuit, where his dalliances with the most beautiful women in the world were splashed across page 6 every week, and his high class lifestyle became the stuff of legend. Casablancas-young, undeniably handsome and increasingly wealthy, was no doubt the envy of many men at the time. Furthermore, he was untouchable-during his glory days he would be accused of rape, murder, and everything in between-and it never seemed to affect him personally or professionally.

(Quote from Bad and Beautiful: Inside the Dazzling and Deadly World of Supermodels by Ian Haplerin)

“[Casablancas] didn’t care what the media said about him, just as long as they spelled his name right” said entertainment critic Thomas Mann. “He knew how to play the media to a tee and was a master at turning any publicity he got into dollars. The craziest part is he didn’t have to spend a dime marketing himself. The press followed him wherever he went, and became obsessed with every detail of his life.

And while Trump entered his long period of reckless business deals and marital strife, Casablancas was becoming an international star, credited with creating the supermodel. With his stable of women-both the ones he poached from rival agencies, and a growing roster of mostly young teenage girls recruited by his team of less than reputable international talent scouts-he embraced his reputation for risk taking and debauchery. After signing Cindy Crawford in 1988 he encouraged her to pose for Playboy magazine, as a way to expand her brand. The ensuing publicity led to a job as host of the MTV show “House of Style” and her iconic Superbowl ad for Pepsi. In 1995 she topped the Forbes list of highest-paid models, earning $6.5 million. The era of the supermodel had begun.

Donald Trump, for his part, was becoming increasingly restless, and reckless. Despite fathering 3 children and having a devoted wife, by all accounts he didn’t spend much time with any of them, preferring work and play to the routines of domestic life. In the 80’s he made at least two life changing decisions-to step out on his wife publicly, and to expand his negligible empire into Atlantic City casinos. He built Harrah’s at Trump Plaza in 1984, and a partially completed building that became Trump Castle in 1985-a property that would be managed by his first wife, Ivana. He also scooped up the Taj Mahal in 1988, which at a cost of $1.1 billion made it the most expensive casino ever built at the time.

Somewhere along the line, during this time period, Trump appears to have hardened and grown cynical. Despite all of his efforts, by most accounts he was never really accepted by the Manhattan social

crowd. No matter how many buildings he put his name on, or how many millions he was worth, he was still always seen as a bit of a joke. Over time his resentment grew, and simmered into anger-and his actions became increasingly fueled by his need to settle scores.

According to the accounts of his business partner at Harrah’s, he was not well suited for the gambling world and was nothing more than an off-puttingly rude presence on the casino floor, often becoming angry at the very high rollers who make such industries incredibly lucrative in the first place, and demanding they leave if they were too far ahead of the house in their betting. Trump became steeped in excess, making extravagant purchases such as a private jet which he decorated with his name emblazoned across the fuselage-and yet he was so cheap that he refused to fly in VIP clients, even those who were prepared to put up millions of dollars in bets-because he didn’t want to waste the gas and he was concerned over the prospect of them using his gold plated toilets and introducing him to strange germs.

As his Atlantic City escapades began, Trump was in the midst of at least one torrid affair-with a 20 year old beauty queen, no less, named Marla Maples. She was trying unsuccessfully to break into show business. In an attempt to keep first wife Ivana distracted from his dalliances, he would put her in charge of his Trump Castle property-a job for which she was given a salary, as he boasted, of $1 a year (and “all the dresses she can buy”). With Ivana distracted, he became increasingly hot and heavy with Marla, who he put up in a condo at Trump Tower and controlled every aspect of her social life.

In the meantime his relationship with Ivana deteriorated-culminating in a now legendary ski slope showdown in Aspen between his wife and his girlfriend. And according to a sworn deposition that she gave during the divorce (which she would publicly distance herself from later) Donald brutally raped her:

After a painful scalp reduction surgery to remove a bald spot, Donald Trump confronted his then-wife, who had previously used the same plastic surgeon.

“Your fucking doctor has ruined me!” Trump cried.

What followed was a “violent assault,” according to Lost Tycoon. Donald held back Ivana’s arms and began to pull out fistfuls of hair from her scalp, as if to mirror the pain he felt from his own operation. He tore off her clothes and unzipped his pants.

“Then he jams his penis inside her for the first time in more than sixteen months. Ivana is terrified… It is a violent assault,” Hurt writes. “According to versions she repeats to some of her closest confidantes, ‘he raped me.’”

Following the incident, Ivana ran upstairs, hid behind a locked door, and remained there “crying for the rest of night.” When she returned to the master bedroom in the morning, he was there.

“As she looks in horror at the ripped-out hair scattered all over the bed, he glares at her and asks with menacing casualness: ‘Does it hurt?’”

Trump, perhaps inspired by the success of John Casablancas in earned media, decided to turn the ending of his first marriage into a Greek Tragedy for the ages. New personas were created in the form of “publicists” that sounded uncannily like Donald Trump himself. These personas called reporters to scoop them on salacious details of his exploits. Trump and/or his alter ego/”publicist” would call Page Six reporter Liz Smith and others incessantly to let them know that Mr. Trump, while still technically married, and already carrying on a serious relationship with his mistress, was nonetheless the object of unbridled desire by the most beautiful women on the planet, who he apparently had to beat off with a stick. Madonna was chasing him around like a dog in heat. He was bedding “literally dozens” of models-a different one every day of the week. Kim Basinger was among his many conquests. And Carla Bruni-at the time one of the most high-profile supermodels in the world-was pursuing him to the point that restraining orders might end up necessary. Such was the sexual magnetism of “The Donald” in the late 80’s, early 90’s-to hear him publicist John Barron say it.

Of course the fake publicist ruse eventually caught up with him. Page 6 reporters were all too familiar with the voice of Donald Trump, as was Marla Maples who they played the tape for to confirm. And eventually Trump would admit that the story about Carla Bruni was really just a way to get his long suffering mistress jealous. And yet despite the fact that the ostensible relationship was entirely fictional, Trump has continued to act like he did in fact have an affair with Carla Bruni. As recently as 2008, in an interview with Howard Stern-he played coy when asked about his past dalliances with Bruni (who went on to become the first lady of France after marrying Nicholas Sarkozy) and made the now infamous comment about her less than impressive breasts-saying “very hard to be a 10 when you’re flat chested.”

NY Post story about Trump’s “romance” with Carla Bruni
Bruni, for her part, vehemently denied that she was ever romantically involved with Trump, and said she felt “humiliated” by the story. Indeed she had a very different account of their one and only encounter. As she remembered it, while in New York for a charity event Donald Trump tracked her down at her hotel and tried to get in her pants. Thoroughly uninterested and annoyed, Carla would ultimately trick Trump into paying for a master suite in the hotel where she was staying-a suite where Carla and her friends spent the next few days ordering room service and gloating over the way they fooled the ‘King of Tacky.’

She speculated it may have been in retaliation for her rejection that Trump planted the story that they were romantically involved. A year later she would sum up the entire scandal in one perfect sentence- “Trump has obviously always been a lunatic”

Trump’s bizarre behavior around Carla, and women generally, turns out to have been fairly typical for Donald Trump. In fact it gives us quite an interesting glimpse into his personality. You see, despite his attempts to portray himself as a Don Juan, he really didn’t have much in the way of game-at least according to those who know him. “In all honesty, Donald is completely awkward with women,” a Trump insider told the New York Daily News in a July 2016 interview. “He never developed small talk. He’s not very social. He doesn’t have any friends. Plus, he’s completely paranoid about venereal disease and AIDS.”

In light of this, and considering the other things that were going on in his life, I will make an observation- Trump has been in the public eye for around 30 years, and his personal life-including romantic dalliances-have been exhaustively covered. Yet within those multiple decades in the public eye, there is a period of a little under five years in which Trump faced multiple accusations of sexual harassment and assault. To me, at least, the high number of accusations within a short time period are striking, as are similarities between each woman’s account.

His alleged rape of his first wife Ivana takes place in late 1989. He was accused of sexually harassing a model in 1992. A lawsuit filed by Jill Hearth alleged ongoing sexual misconduct-including an attempted rape, over the course of 2 months spanning between 1993 and 1994. And his alleged rape of a 13 year old girl (which I will discuss in more detail in the next installment) was reported as taking place in early 1994. As far as I’m aware, no other allegations have surfaced-although women in both his employ and personal life have spoken out about his continued inappropriate behavior and comments.

1989-1995 just so happens to be the same time period in which Donald Trump’s world and empire was falling apart at the seams. In the beginning of the decade he was facing the end of his first marriage and a looming court battle. Despite his purportedly active dating life, by many accounts Trump was being rejected by many, if not most, of the women he pursued-including Carla Bruni and Jill Hearth. Marla Maples, after years of being the secret mistress and repeated rounds of being dumped and publicly humiliated by Trump, was starting to lose her patience. And the big gamble he took in Atlantic City was, by all accounts, failing miserably-a direct result of his jaw droppingly awful business practices and general incompetence. In 1991, his Taj Mahal Casino filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy. In 1992, he again filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, this time on his Trump Plaza Hotel (also in Atlantic City), at the time owing $550 million dollars. Recall that he would report an almost 1 billion dollar loss on his 1995 tax returns, according to the copies obtained by the New York Times. Indeed, the early

90’s were not a very good era for Donald Trump. In light of this fact, it’s worth noting that the sexual assault allegations against him are all clustered within this very time frame.

In light of this, and considering the other things that were going on in his life, I will make an observation- Trump has been in the public eye for around 30 years, and his personal life-including romantic dalliances-have been exhaustively covered. Yet within those multiple decades in the public eye, there is a period of a little under five years in which Trump faced multiple accusations of sexual harassment and assault. To me, at least, the high number of accusations within a short time period are striking, as are similarities between each woman’s account.

His alleged rape of his first wife Ivana takes place in late 1989. He was accused of sexually harassing a model in 1992. A lawsuit filed by Jill Hearth alleged ongoing sexual misconduct-including an attempted rape, over the course of 2 months spanning between 1993 and 1994. And his alleged rape of a 13 year old girl (which I will discuss in more detail in the next installment) was reported as taking place in early 1994. As far as I’m aware, no other allegations have surfaced-although women in both his employ and personal life have spoken out about his continued inappropriate behavior and comments.

1989-1995 just so happens to be the same time period in which Donald Trumps world and empire was falling apart at the seams. In the beginning of the decade he was facing the end of his first marriage and a looming court battle. Despite his purportedly active dating life, by many accounts Trump was being rejected by many, if not most, of the women he pursued-including Carla Bruni and Jill Hearth. Marla Maples, after years of being the secret mistress and repeated rounds of being dumped and publicly humiliated by Trump, was starting to lose her patience. And the big gamble he took in Atlantic City was, by all accounts, failing miserably-a direct result of his jaw droppingly awful business practices and general incompetence. In 1991, his Taj Mahal Casino filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy. In 1992, he again filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy again, this time on his Trump Plaza Hotel (also in Atlantic City), at the time owing $550 million dollars. Recall that he would report an almost 1 billion dollar loss on his 1995 tax returns, according to the copies obtained by the New York Times. Indeed, the early 90’s were not a very good era for Donald Trump. In light of this fact, it’s worth noting that the sexual assault allegations against him are all clustered within this very time frame.

Casablancas in the 1980’s-The Beginning of the End

For his part John Casablancas enjoyed continued success throughout most of the 1980’s, building the largest and most profitable modeling agency in the world. But beneath the glitz and glamour of his supermodels and lifestyle lurked a much darker reality. Once his agency was established, Casablancas embarked on creating a kind of hierarchy-a multi-tiered system that his prospects would have to navigate in order to be signed. Casablancas would ultimately turn over the day to day control of his agency to his business partner, and focus most of his time and energy on his “New Faces” division, meeting dozens of aspiring models a day in the comfort of his corner office, away from prying eyes.

It was in this private setting that Casablancas began the tradition of weighing and measuring girls, which soon became widespread throughout the industry. It was a practice that served the dual purpose of allowing agencies to closely monitor any weight gain, and created a pretense for agents to meet with young models alone in their offices, and require them to strip nude. The tier system incentivized doing whatever it took to get to “the top”-a perch which 99% of the young girls scouted and brought before Casablancas would never reach-there were only a handful of models who could wake up for nothing less than $10,000 a day, after all. But the possibility was tantalizing, and Casablancas was a skilled groomer who lavished every one of his models with attention and made them feel like they had the potential to reach the top. This created a power dynamic that had previously not existed. Among models it was understood that John Casablancas could make you a star. It was also understood that he could ruin you.

The system worked for a while, but it was foiled by the fact that the playboys-in particular John Casablancas- were used to living by a different set of rules, and never being held accountable. None of these men were shy about their behavior, and the fact that they were bedding models as young as 12 on a routine basis was well known. But in the 1980’s the cultural tides started to turn against them. With increased awareness of child sexual abuse-both its alarming prevalence and it’s devastating effect on victims- attitudes began to change, and the public became less tolerant of famous men and their dalliances with children. And soon enough John Casablancas and his fellow playboys would find themselves embroiled in increasingly distasteful scandals involving underage girls.

Very Young Girls

In 1984, John Casablancas met then 14-year old Stephanie Seymour at his newly launched “look of the year” contest for Elite. Casablancas selected Seymour as the local winner, but declared her a bit too undeveloped for his personal tastes (“if I looked at anyone with interest, it was her mom!” he said) and she was shipped back off to Florida to start her sophomore year in high school. Throughout the year, Seymour, continued to write to Casablancas (“the kid was delightful” he said of her correspondence, “she would send little letters and when you opened the letter, little silver stars would fall out”) and Casablancas responded to her correspondence personally, urging her to come back to New York and join his agency once school let out. At the end of her sophomore year she did just that, and by this time she was finally up to Casablancas’s exhausting standards. “By that time...her body was extraordinary-she was long and thin and the shapes were where they had to be-and her face was gorgeous, with this innocent little-child voice” he said in an interview, explaining his lust over a girl young enough to be his grandchild.

On the night of her 16th birthday, John Casablancas threw Stephanie Seymour a party at a cocaine-fueled nightclub in Milan, presenting her with a ,goblet of milk and plate of cookies. One week later, he would move in with her.

John Casablancas meets model hopefuls in his Denver offices in 1983
Casablancas affinity for very young girls was not a secret-in fact it was legendary within the fashion industry and the social scene in New York City long before it became public knowledge. “I really, really have a bit of Pygmalion syndrome” he admitted in an interview, before discussing how he encouraged one of his 17 year old “new face” girls to lose weight by telling her that he was “really, really turned off” by her body (The Pygmalion effect, or Rosenthal effect, is the phenomenon whereby higher expectations lead to an increase in performance. The effect is named after the Greek myth of Pygmalion, a sculptor who fell in love with a statue he had carved)

By the time “New York Magazine” did a front page profile of him in 1988, Casablancas reputation for bedding young models was established and begrudgingly accepted (a price to pay in exchange for his “genius”) within the New York social scene, but the expose came as a shock to many outside the bubble. John Casablancas would soon find out that he was not as untouchable as he thought he was.

In the article-which ran under the title “Girl Crazy”-Casablancas was portrayed as a champagne guzzling pervert, singularly dedicated to the “new look” department of Elite where he spent his days ogling the scantily clad, sometimes naked bodies of teenage girls.

In light of Donald Trump’s more alarming comments and decisions around his daughter Ivanka, this quote stands out:

Casablancas talked about his seventeen year old daughter, Cecile. He said Cecile had been solicited by a photographer last summer on a beach in Ibiza.The photographer asked her to pose in a bikini, and Casablancas raced over to try to get a $2,000 fee for the shot. “She’s got a great little body” he told his models.

Another quote that brings a chuckle and a nod of recognition in this story is Casablancas’s bizarre pride over never having changed a diaper. Donald Trump would make similar boasts in a Howard Stern interview a few years later. Compelling proof this is not, but I do believe it’s a hint at the kind of Don Juan persona that Don, far from a Juan, actually a dejected, balding husband with a crumbling empire,

John Casablancas and Donald Trump at the Elite “Look of the Year” competition, 1994. Trump served on the judges panel.
“Girl Crazy”- marked the beginning of John Casablancas downfall. The article became a huge scandal that reverberated far beyond the modeling industry and into the mainstream press. It was especially visible in New York City, where Elite had it’s headquarters and where Casablancas lived and was an active part of the social scene. Certainly, without a doubt, it would have gotten around to Donald Trump.

But the scandal did not end there, nor did it begin. Less than a month earlier 60 minutes aired a prime-time special on the abuses of underage girls in the modeling industry. Investigative reporter Craig Pyes portrayed the modeling industry as infested with agents who were notorious hustlers and playboys. His report revealed that both Claude Haddad- the head of European scouting for Ford- and Ford’s Paris-based agent Jean-Luc Brunel had been accused of horrific sexual misconduct by many models. The special aired the interviews of dozens of women who accused both Brunel and Haddad of a litany of crimes, ranging from racist invective towards black models to violent rape. And in fact the hidden camera footage captured in filming the special caught it all- from Xavier lamenting about n**er models, to Haddad chuckling about drugging and raping 13 year old girls. According to Model At a retreat soon after the one-two punch delivered by the coverage, Haddad, Jean Luc Brunel and Casablancas were once again overheard (albeit not taped this time around) laughing about their crimes. Alternatively they were angry when confronted by interim scouting manager Trudi Tapscott-”I’m a man and I have needs, I will not apologize for that!” Casablancas is said to have declared.

There was, to be fair, fallout from these reports. Brunel and Haddad were condemned by Eileen Ford, and Casablancas never fully regained his public reputation. But the public and the insular world of fashion are very different animals, and within the latter the only repercussions any of the men faced was in retribution for airing the industries dirty laundry with their sloppiness. Haddad and Brunel kept their jobs, albeit not in an official capacity. And while Casablancas was removed from his official role as head of the “New Faces” division of Elite, where he had unrestrained access and influence over the youngest and most impressionable girls represented by his agency, he didn’t go very far. His unofficial capacity was far-reaching, and his behaviors were explained away by his replacements. One of the agents taking his place was Trudi Tapscott-the same woman who had tried unsuccessfully to confront John after his forced retirement. While initially she was furious at Casablancas, less than a year later she had softened her stance. Quoted in Model, she stated ”People in this business use their power to manipulate people in ways that are unfair”. But she nonetheless told the many parents who were concerned about Casablancas-who still retained an unofficial role in the division-that he was not a manipulator. “My answer is that no one ever did anything they didn’t want to” she stated. “I’m amazed how these girls act in certain situations. They knew more about making passes [at men] than I ever knew”

Over time Donald Trump would emerge from the ruins of his empire with a new approach to business, and a new source of income-in 1996 he bought the rights to the Miss Universe franchise, and became the central figure in the running of these pageants. And in 1999 he started a modeling agency-T models, later changed to Trump Model Management. The correlation of interests is quite clear-for a man awkward around women but dependent on his public image saying otherwise, a stable of women under his employ was a way to boost his image-and even better, he was able to lock all of these women into non disclosure agreements, ensuring that his behavior with them had little chance of becoming public knowledge. It also appeared to have served as a useful tool regarding his business transactions-which, in the aftermath of his bankruptcy, were increasingly dependent on some less than savory characters. How he did this, and the breadth of this activity, will be explored in the next installment. But for the time being, there is one final aspect of this story that is breathtaking, and speaks more to the character of Donald Trump than anything else.


Fourteen year old Ivanka, the suddenly ravishing mini-babe who seems like one of those kids from soap operas-4 years old one day, 19 the next-is starting to model [...]

Donald is particularly enthusiastic.

-New York Magazine, December 18th 1995

7 years had passed since John Casablancas had appeared on the cover of New York magazine, declaring his love for underage girls, and Donald and Ivana had made a decision-their daughter, Ivanka, would become a model. Despite a widespread belief that she was too young, too naive, and wasn’t quite aesthetically suited for the industry-Ivanka Trump was nonetheless able to get signed to a major agency, At the tender age of 13, she signed on with the new look department of Elite Model Management- under the tutelage of none other than John Casablancas:

It seems that Monica Pillard, the president of Elite, had been eyeing Ivanka since she spotted her on her father's lap four years ago, when Mr. Trump was a judge of a new-talent contest for the agency.

Mr. Trump and Elite have a longstanding, informal relationship. Ms. Pillard served as a judge in the Miss Universe pageant, which is jointly owned by Mr. Trump and CBS, as is the Miss Teen USA pageant. John Casablancas, Elite's founder, is a friend of Mr. Trump's, and Elite has held events at Trump Tower in Manhattan.

Yes, Donald Trump decided to entrust his daughter to this man. Yes, Casablancas still had his job. He would weather charges of tax evasion, and class action lawsuit-but eventually his past caught up with him. In 2002 he was sued by a former model who alleged that Casablancas had raped her when she was 15, and then forced her to get an abortion. The lawsuit was settled for an undisclosed amount, and in 2003 Elite model management officially declared bankruptcy.

Despite the fact that Ivanka largely flopped as a model, Donald Trump would continue to brag about her physical beauty, physique, and ostensibly prolific modeling career.

He would also go on to unceremoniously dump Marla Maples, his long suffering mistress having become his reluctant second bride, and shut her down with legal arrangements that both forbade her from saying a negative word about him in public for all time, and ensured she got next to nothing in spousal/child support. Maples agreed to this despite the fact that she had already raised their daughter Tiffany almost entirely on her own. In fact until his presidential run Trump had not shown a modicum of fatherly interest in her life aside from the bizarre speculation-when she was merely a baby-about her future breast size and compliments of her 1 year old legs on Lifestyles of the RIch and Famous. Over a decade later, in one of his few public acknowledgements of her existence, he would smirk as he admitted to Howard Stern that he had urged Marla to abort her.

In the meantime Elite and Ford collapsed under the weight of their scandals-creating a vacuum of talent to cash in on. A a cast of shady characters and playboys were drawn in, eager to capitalize on the power, social status and potential fortune that could be found in the business of beautiful girls.

As Ford lost her grip on power, for better or worse, so died the last vestiges of a honor code within the modeling world. While the one that existed was without teeth, it still marked a change. During this time, the supermodel era also came to an end-no model since has ever dared to suggest that there was a price tag attached to her presence. Modesty-in terms of value and talent-became synonymous with greed and hubris. The fact that models-even supermodels-never gained the riches that were born of their starved bodies and faces didn’t matter. The fact that the largest spoils went to the very men who were caught on hidden camera laughing about raping underage girls didn’t matter. The industry was, like so many others, an unregulated wild west. And into this fray came numerous playboys and would-become kings. Jean Luc Brunel, the unwitting star of the BBC undercover investigation started MC2. Claude Haddad, his co-star, started DNA. Paolo Zampolli, who we will talk about in the next installment, started ID. Michel Adam Lisowski started FashionTV. And Donald J. Trump started Trump Model Management.

All of these individuals and companies are, as it turns out, inextricably linked in ways that leave little doubt of the nature of their business. The fashion industry, as exploitative and morally ambiguous as it is on it’s very surface, is in fact merely the rock that covers an ecosystem of underground creatures beneath. This ecosystem will be explored and laid bare in my next post. This is a story that must be told in layers and parts. It involves oligarchs and diplomats, tax evasion, and trafficking of drugs, weapons, and human beings.

But for now, it is important to explore the surface-because it is the most easily understood, provable, and in many ways it’s the most telling when it comes to the character of the man who wants to be president. And there are a myriad of important questions to ask knowing the facts thus far:

What kind of man seeks out, pursues friendship and business partnerships with a man who is unabashed in his predilection for underage girls? Who openly admits he prefers them young because they are easily manipulated? John Casablancas was “girl crazy”, and proud of it. His reputation was legendary.

Ivanka Trump at a modeling shoot, age 14
Imagine, for a moment, that John Casablancas was doing this type of thing with boys of the same age. Imagine he was inviting young teenagers to his private office, having them strip down to near or complete nudity, inspecting their bodies, talking about how he thought they were sexy, sending them off to Europe to get them “broken in”, and falling in love with them. The ages of the girls he preyed on is not all that far off from the ages of the boys that Jerry Sandusky abused, and we all readily acknowledge that’s wrong. Joe Paterno was widely-rightfully-condemned for turning a blind eye to what was happening. But when it’s 14 year old girls? Why does anyone, including Trump, who continued to do business with him get a pass? And why is this the first time, to my knowledge, that Trump’s association with John Casablancas has even been questioned in the public sphere?

And for that matter-What kind of man throws his 14 year old daughter into this den of wolves? Plausible deniability isn’t going to work on this one-Donald Trump knew about the state of the industry, he knew that it was a cesspool of drug abuse and sexual exploitation. Why would he sign his underage daughter with, of all people, John Casablancas? Anyone who was tangentially connected to the modeling industry was well aware of the scandals that plagued him-his relationship with Stephanie Seymour, his unrelenting desire for young girls. And furthermore, they KNEW that Casablancas’ attitude was far from an outlier, that in fact the industry was rife with people exactly like him, and hopelessly corrupted by their influence. This was not obscure knowledge-it was a subject of a national broadcast. It was an industry wide embarrassment. It was a front page story.

Donald Trump knew the reputation of Elite, he knew the reputation of the industry, he knew that it was a ripe hunting ground for young, impressionable girls. He knew that drugs were rampant and frequently pushed on “models” as they were hired under the guise of “entertainment” of “guests”-in fact, he admitted as much when asked about it in this New York Times Interview:

''This is an interesting case,'' he said over his speaker phone, which was not on a boat but rather in his office. ''I am only modestly in favor of this because I understand that that life is a very fast life, and at that age it is always a risky proposition.'

So what did Trump do? Did he recoil in horror? Did he disavow any further dealings with these people?


If you as a parent knew all of this about the fashion industry, modeling in particular-what would you do if your child, 13 at the time, announced that she wanted to become a model? By all accounts it does not appear that Ivanka was even the driving force behind the decision to start modeling. In fact reading old profiles of Trump, it’s abundantly clear that both he and Ivana were excited and invigorated by the prospect of their little girl being on the catwalk and in the pages of Vogue. They promoted her tirelessly-especially Donald. He bragged to anyone who would listen about how beautiful Ivanka was, often remarking on her body. He sought affirmation from others when he asked if they (including a judge for MIss USA and others) thought his daughter was “hot”. Trump is invested in this idea of his daughter as sexually desirable. I suppose it lends credence to his superior genes theory, in a way. But even a eugenicist would be able to talk about their progeny in a way that doesn’t reduce them to their sex appeal. Every father in this country-at least the ones who don’t have some underlying pathology-understand that fixating on your daughters body, her “hotness”, let alone thinking about her sex life vis a vis your own and even “joking” about dating her-is downright bizarre. An outrageous comment, a joke that falls flat-it happens. But this isn’t a one off. This is a pervasive pattern of behavior and a reflection of belief.

Most men do not talk about their daughters in this way. Not when they are adults, not when they are teenagers, certainly not when they are infants as he did when it came to Tiffany and her legs and future breasts. And most fathers care enough about their daughters to not thrust them into an industry rife with abuse, placing them under the control of a man known to take advantage of his underage charges. This is the basic criteria for being a decent human being, and the bare minimum to be a competent parent-you don’t expose your children to this. You protect them from it. Donald Trump is apparently incapable of even rising to that most basic standard of decency.

In fact, many, many people and many companies decided not to work with Casablancas at all after his private behavior became public. Whether it was a moral stance, or a business decision, they determined he was toxic and should be avoided at all costs. Many people were able to see that associating with Casablancas would not reflect well on their character, and that any young woman they put in his presence would be at risk.

The End Game for Casablancas, The Beginning of a New Empire

Russian models display Trump Vodka -- encrusted in 24-carat gold -- at the Millionaire Fair in Moscow in 2007.
And so this is the sad epilogue of John Casablancas-the man, the legend, the rather morally bankrupt human being. With his career and reputation in tatters, he moved to Brazil and tried to become a new man. It was there, in Brazil, that he met a high school junior from the slums of Sao Paulo who would eventually become his third and final wife. Casablancas, 51 at the time, met the 17 year old at-where else? The Elite Look of the Year competition, which he was able to export to Brazil with the help of friends like Trump, and Trump’s “matchmaker” and future business partner Paolo Zampolli. Once again Donald Trump was in attendance for the contest, sitting on the judges panel-smirk on his face, beaming, ready and eager to assert dominance.

But where John Casablancas ended up at the end of his life is sadly ironic considering where our story began:

''The amount of money you have, especially in the region around São Paulo, is absolutely mind-boggling,'' said John Casablancas, the modeling mogul [...] 'You can be so elitist and so selective that you can focus on the upper crust of the upper crust.''

Mr. Casablancas, who sits on the board at Trump Realty Brazil and calls himself a ''lifestyle consultant of sorts'' for the resort's planning committee, predicts that Villa Trump will be such a success that it will end up having to turn people away.

-Trump Takes a Meeting, Now Backs a Resort in Brazil, New York Times, May 19 2004

Yes, John Casablancas- role model and rival to Donald Trump, the man who possessed the natural charm that Trump could never have, nonetheless ended up working for him in the end. And in many ways it would seem that Donald Trump ended up on top, doesn’t it? He has a beautiful wife who he has fooled most of the public into believing was once a high fashion model herself. She has given him another child who is good at the cyber, and stands as living testament to the continued virility of his orange hued father as he enters his 7th decade of life. But even better yet, Trump actually now has ownership over a stable of girls.

All of the sudden, it was Trump who was surrounded by the most beautiful women in the world, while John Casablancas settled down with wife #3 and served on Trumps board in Brazil- Which begs the question-exactly what type of lifestyle was John Casablancas promoting? What type of expertise did he bring to the table? Did he have a hidden knowledge of real estate all along? Or was his “expertise” something else entirely? We have an idea based on the people he was introduced to through Casablancas, but we will have to cover that in the next installment.

For now, I will simply note that John Casablancas died at the age of 70, of pancreatic cancer. He would go to his grave bitterly cursing the very supermodels he is credited with creating- raging about their high and mighty attitudes, inflated self-importance and sense of worth, Above all else their lack of appreciation for everything he, John Casablancas, had done for them. He died bitching, still, at the audacity of women Linda Evangelista expecting $10,000 a day for her presence. Never mind that his own presence went for considerably higher at the height of his career, or that it was Linda Evangelista’s face and body that were being photographed, not his. “That is something I will always regret” he said, of creating the supermodel. He called Naomi Campbell “odious”, and Heidi Klum a “talentless German sausage” (ever the Casablancas copy cat, Donald Trump would also insult Klum, saying that she was “no longer a 10” and lamenting the state of her apparently less than perfect bikini body 8 weeks postpartum)

In addition to his “lifestyle” consulting for Trump’s high class resorts precariously located in the middle of slums, Casablancas spent his final years working on other ventures. According to a late interview by Michael Gross for his fantastic book Model, he continued to do some kind of scouting-although the clients he worked for was never disclosed. Casablancas also developed a cyber-model agency, which he called “Illusion 2K”, which utilized the internet to facilitate global scouting. The program also featured computer-animated model, designed around what was considered an “ideal woman” at the time, named Webbie Tookay. Her greatest attribute, Casablancas said, was that she would never complain.

But there is one final endeavor that John Casablancas took on before his death, which carries on to this day. And I think it might sound familiar to anyone familiar with Trump.

Such glamour!
John Casablancas, you see, started a modeling school. It was wildly successful, and before long franchises started popping up all over the country like mushrooms. Women of my generation probably remember the ads in the back of YM and Seventeen magazine. They boasted of the training regimen,that Casablancas himself used for his new faces division. John Casablancas School of Modeling promised to transform any young lady with potential (as screened by the admissions office during an interview and upon review of a head-shot-later on I would find out that such “interviews” were conducted with anyone who applied and the majority of these Polaroids ended up in the dumpster)

I almost did it, but my parents balked at the cost. But my best friend in 7th grade-a former Texas beauty queen-signed on for summer classes. She would practice walking with a book balanced on her head and strut an imaginary catwalk. On the night before graduation she rinsed her hair with mayonnaise at the suggestion of her Casablancas official stylist. She did this treatment at my house and was horrified when it did not wash out, no matter how many rinses she tried. Her hair, and our bathroom, smelled like a bologna sandwich for weeks. But she came back from her model school graduation with a certificate in her hand and a huge smile on her face-she was officially, at that moment, a John Casablancas girl. An actual real life model. The thousands of dollars her family had spent were well worth it.

She never got booked. Well, correction-she got booked for a singing gig at our state fair, but only after she removed any mention of the John Casablancas modeling school from her resume. It swiftly became a source of humiliation, as everyone in the industry apparently knew it was a con. Her family paid off her debt to the agency, but many other “students” ended up in the same kind of quagmire that she found herself in, but with no way out. They had flushed away thousands on an education that they are too ashamed to list on their resume’s. They had been duped by the promises of a con-man who ensured them his sterling reputation would guarantee success, and that the fact they were even considered for such an honor was an honor in and of itself.

Casablancas Modeling Schools created the blueprint that other flim-flam artists would eventually follow-Using a well known name as a lure, then providing a worthless “degree” or “certification” from a non-accredited body. Curriculum designed by various clueless charlatans, combined with high pressure sales tactics, and unapproved charges. For almost 2 decades now, John Casablancas’ school has carried on his legacy, finding new victims daily-the majority of them children, and their parents who end up footing the bill.

In the words of one student:

“They "saw potential" in anyone with a checkbook.”

In the words of another-

”the most disrespectful people I have ever been in contact with”.

And finally one more (although there is a LOT where that came from here)

“My daughter went [...] back in 1998...they told her that she had to lose weight [...] she was 14 years old, and weighed 125 pounds at the time”

A famous name, the implicit promise of attaining fame and fortune, implied divulging of industry secrets and high powered connections. High pressure sales tactics and confusing contracts, widespread accusations of fraud and false advertising. A very rich man ripping off mostly working and middle class families. Sound familiar?

When John Casablancas died he was eulogized in the familiar way that powerful men are eulogized no matter what their sins. Stephanie Seymour, her goblet of milk and plate of cookies, were not mentioned. John Casablancas stubborn insistence that he owned the rights and should share in the profits made off of the bodies and faces of little girls….that lived on-even when those little girls were too undeveloped and disappointing compared to their mothers (not too young to write love letters to, not to young to lure back to New York).

“I’m only a man, and I have needs” was, of course, never mentioned. Casablancas’s legacy of fraud- the whole-sale rip off of dreams like those of my friend, and everything that lay within the back pages of my latest issue of seventeen and YM went unremarked upon. The countless number of girls who were abused and exploited within his “school’s”, his “new faces” division, his pep talks with naked adolescents trembling on scales as they straddled the fine line between “model” and “healthy weight” were forgotten. Honestly, who knows how many were affected? Based on the conversations I’ve had, not a single person who worked under Casablancas’s reign at Elite went unscathed. Victims of Claude Haddad-a man that Casablancas would later reconcile with and try to plot a re-entry into the industry- have formed a de-facto support group because of the horrors they endured. They still cry when they talk about it. They cry when they talk about him. They are not crying over his departure.

And yet John Casablancas, the corporation, the legend, lives on. His name is still attached and promoted by his discredited chain of modeling schools, which continue to churn through small town girls with high aspirations, low self esteem, and gullible parents willing to accrue sub-prime debt to help them succeed. A tapestry woven with countless broken dreams and lost fortunes. His legacy continues to take out ads in teen magazines to lure in young girls, teach them useless skills like how to balance a book on their head while turning their hair into grease-fires and issue them “diplomas” printed out at Kinkos under high volume discount. At the end they either walk away with thousands of dollars in debt before they even reach college-or if they are “lucky” they might funnel their “experience” and “Contacts” into the next level of this system-Miss Teen USA, teen modeling, hopelessly corrupt industries that will likely chew them up and spit them out before they reach the age of majority. In the end, despite his inadequacies, Donald Trump would end up on top.

In the meantime, however, the fashion industry as a whole would go through one more unexpected and profound transformation. After the USSR collapsed a very few number of men profited, and became untouchable, much more so than Casablancas could have ever dreamed. The cultural winds surrounding the industry changed direction yet again. It was likely inevitable, especially in such an already corrupt environment. But the results would be nothing short of devastating for many of the young lives caught in the balance, girls from Iowa to Slovenia and Brazil. And Donald Trump was in the center of it, just as one might expect he would be, all too willing to reap the rewards. ... ive-Part-1
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Sun Jul 21, 2019 9:10 am

Lincoln's Bible

Donald Trump defends Vladimir Putin over Alexander Litvinenko murder
The US Republican front-runner wades into the Litvinenko case to claim that "many people say it wasn't Putin" ... urder.html

#PedoPutin is the worst of Donnie's man-crushes, no doubt.

But let's take a look at the other PEDOPHILES & GLOBAL RAPE-TRADERS that our Pres pals around with &/or endorses.

1. JEFFREY EPSTEIN: convicted child rapist, accused child trafficker, & alleged money-launderer 4 RUS mob.


Lincoln's Bible

One brave woman even named #DotardDonnie in Epstein's child rape trial - as a participant in Epstein's alleged rape parties. Here's her affidavit. ... Affidavits

2. ROY MOORE. Remember him? Yep, he got #DotardDonnie's endorsement & defense against child assault claims.

Donald Trump & Jeffrey Epstein Rape Lawsuit and Affidavits ... Affidavits

Lincoln's Bible

28 Jan 2018
3. TEVFIK ARIF: He founded BAYROCK - the Felix Sater run fund behind #DotardDonnie's R.E. "development" (when no banks would lend to #DotardDonnie).
Tevfik likes yachts & stocks them w/ underage "prostitutes." (remember Donnie's Boy Scout speech? Yeah...)

Rich Schapiro
Donald Trump associate Tevfik Arif prostitution ring bust: Cops caught businessmen in act - report

Tevfik Arif is pictured with Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump at the Trump Soho Launch in Sept. 2007. (Holden/WireImage)

Ed. Note: In April 2012, Tevfik Arif was acquitted by a Turkish court of all charges in connection with the incident reported here. The court also found that none of the women on the yacht was under the age of 18. –Updated October 19, 2012.

Turkish cops who broke up a prostitution ring believed to be run by one of Donald Trump's business partners caught the johns with their pants down, it was reported Friday.

A lavish sex party was in full swing when officers raided the prized yacht where mogul Tevfik Arif is suspected of organizing trysts between wealthy businessmen and Eastern European models.

"Even though it was afternoon, almost all of the men and women in those rooms were naked," an unidentified sergeant told the Milliyet newspaper. "Most of the rooms were quite untidy and there were several condoms, used and unused, in all of the rooms."

The new details of the raid emerged as investigators continued to grill Arif, a Kazakh-national who co-developed three Trump buildings. The 57-year-old founder of Bayrock Group has not been charged.

The raid aboard the 450-foot luxury yacht once owned by Turkey's founder was the culmination of a seven-month investigation.

Arif was among 10 people rounded up on suspicion of operating the prostitution ring.

Nine models from Russia and Ukraine nabbed in the bust, including two minors, will be deported, authorities said.

Before a court hearing, one of the women bit the hand of a female officer who tried to confiscate her cell phone, Milliyet reported. Other officers stepped in to break up the cat fight.

Wealthy Eastern European businessmen and government officials reportedly paid $3,000 to $10,000 per night to bed the women aboard the Savarona yacht.

Turkish officials are trying to reclaim the boat, which was leased to a Turkish businessman who rented it out for up to $40,000 a day. The Savarona is outfitted with 16 suites, a Turkish bath and a movie theater.

Bayrock co-developed the Trump SoHo, Trump International Hotel and Tower in Fort Lauderdale and the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Phoenix.

Trump refused to comment Friday, and the Turkey-based lawyer for Arif, Engin Agyuzlu, could not be reached. ... e-1.191071

Tevfik also likes touching Ivanka.

4. JOHN CASABLANCAS: Lordy, the accusations are a plenty against this disgusto (may he RIP). #DotardDonnie knew him well - and handed off his daughter, at age 13, to model for him.


5. Then, there are the run-of-the-mill rapists & assaulters that #DotardDonnie ran around w/over the years.
Rubbing elbows
Seeking their advice.
Let's drop a few of their names: Ailes, O'Reilly, Weinstein, Wynn - OH, & #DotardDonnie himself.

The 19 Women Who Accused President Trump of Sexual Misconduct
The "Weinstein effect" continues to roil the nation’s power centers. But the allegations against the president have largely stayed in the background.

Matt FordDec 7, 2017 ... mp/547724/

6. #TheCompanyHeKeeps
Got it?

I Was A Child Model for Donald Trump's Buddy, John Casablancas & It Wasn't Pretty

Me, age 13. I had no idea what I was "selling" in this picture.
Two weeks ago I wrote a diary/blog (hereinafter “story”) for Daily Kos about writers who wrote about Trump Model Management’s alleged sex trafficking, and Donald Trump’s alleged personal abuse of under-aged girls. Specifically, I wanted to know why many of the writers and journalists stopped writing and reporting on this topic after the election. I began searching for and reaching out to these people. Swedish Jew Fish (“Rebecca”), a Daily Kos writer, published a well-researched, thorough story about Trump Model Management (“TMM”) and other modeling agencies that abused under-aged girls called, “We All Knew About the Trafficking (Part 1).

Rebecca continued to write after the election and, while her other stories were related to “We All Knew . . .Part 1,” part two was never published. In the comments after one such late-2016 offering Rebecca said, “This doesn’t change my intentions to continue the series and just to clarify this is NOT part 2.” By the end of 2016, Rebecca appeared stopped writing on this topic altogether. Other writers and outspoken critics of TMM also seemed to go quiet at the end of 2016. Quotes like this and similar feelings expressed by others were disconcerting:

“I’ve been destroyed by the things I’ve researched and written about Trump. And bear in mind there are so many things I couldn’t even publish because of the backlash, the threats, the harassment, stalking and abuse I got in response to my second diary.”

~Swedish Jew Fish (Rebecca), November, 2016, “A Place for Heartbroken Democrats” Comment Section

Prior to my first story, I reached out to Rebecca via Daily Kos, on Twitter and via FaceBook for comment as to why she stopped writing about TMM after the election. I did not hear from her then, but I am very happy that Rebecca responded to my story in the “Comments” section, saying:

“No worries I'm alive and well. I was going through a lot in my personal life while I was writing that series and honestly just had to take a break. Obviously the election results came as a shock too and made me re-evaluate what I was willing to put out's one thing when you are writing about a clown candidate who you presume is going down in history as the butt of a joke, quite another when that person has some serious power. Also I got a lot of blowback from that post, basically a bunch of reddit/4chan trolls, but it was jarring and scary.

I do have quite a bit more written and may publish it in the future. Thanks for caring- both about me and this story”

~Swedish Jew Fish (Rebecca) 7/30/2017 In Reply to Justice for Jane Does

Rebecca’s response also garnered grateful responses from her supporters and followers like as Matt Z (who gave me permission to use his heart-felt, sensitive comment):

“Swedish Jewfish, I want to let you know how much your last two diaries on feeling suicidal after the election meant to me. Part of why I’m still alive is because you gave me and others who felt like killing ourselves a place to grieve and be heard. I will be forever grateful for that.”

~Matt Z

I feel passionately about exposing the sexploitation of children through modeling because I lived it. In the 1980s, I was a child model for Donald Trump’s buddy, fellow-exploiter and accused pedophile, (the late) John Casablancas. As they say, “You're known by the company you keep,” and Donald Trump has kept company with — to use his words — some “bad hombres,” and John Casablancas was one of the worst. At age thirteen, I joined John Casablancas/Elite (“JCE”) in a small-ish market and started modeling bathing suits and lingerie.

The late John Casablancas and Donald Trump, Getty Images
I had experiences — and observed other models’ experiences — at JCE that were similar to those exposed by Rebecca, other writers, journalists and by model advocates like RACHEL BLIAS. The picture below is from the JCE catalog, taken when I first joined the agency. Although it was shot within the same twelve month period as the title picture above, the light in the eyes of the girl going into JCE gave way to a certain darkness that often covers the faces of girls who have been exploited.

Writers and journalists who expose the modeling industry’s insipid practices are sometimes the victims’ only champions, as many child sex abuse victims find it too embarrassing or too painful to come forward and speak out, even as adults. The cultural belief that girls “ask for it” by looking seductive also drives victims into hiding.

I communicated with a prolific writer who was and is an inspiration to me, and who has spoken out against model abuse for years. He told me that stopped writing about Trump Model Management because he felt he had aired everything verifiable that he'd learned through his reporting on the issue and said that it would be “difficult, if not impossible, to convince any of Donald Trump’s victims to go on the record.” He said he was “also disgusted by the propensity of Trump fans to accept, and even cheer, his behavior however outrageous, disgusting or even illegal.” The writer requested to remain anonymous.

When society turns a “deaf ear” to those who speak out against sexual exploitation and abuse, engages in victim blaming or gives credence to the erroneous belief that men “can’t help themselves,” it compounds the horror that is child sex abuse. When a man like Donald Trump — who openly and overtly harasses women — is elevated to (and is allowed to maintain) the position of President of the United States, it gives tacit permission for others to engage in this behavior, and that is unconscionable. Sex Trafficking-disguised-as-modeling and used to lure young girls into sexual servitude is a malevolent practice perpetrated by men (and a few women) in the highest and lowest echelons of society and by some of the most powerful people in our country; one of them may even be the President. To this former child model, it is entirely conceivable.

7. Got it?

"We All Knew About the Trafficking"-The Untold Story of Trump Model Management (Part 1) ... ive-Part-1

8. Got it?

Inside Donald Trump’s One-Stop Parties: Attendees Recall Cocaine and Very Young Models

‘I was there to party myself. It was guys with younger girls, sex, a lot of sex, a lot of cocaine, top-shelf liquor’ but no smoking. Trump didn’t approve of cigarettes.

Updated 04.13.17 2:36PM ET / Published 10.24.16 9:00PM ET
One evening in the spring of 2016, Marjorie Moon slipped off her scrubs and washed the emergency room out of her long blond hair. She stepped into a dress and high heels, transforming herself from a tired trauma nurse into a hot date. The 47-year-old divorcée from Los Angeles was inundated with offers from men on matchmaking websites, who often compared her to the Friends actress, Lisa Kudrow. For Moon, dating involved racing home from 12-hour shifts while wrangling babysitters. “I’d been under a lot of stress,” she explained. “Just single mom stuff and whatnot. I have five kids.” Scheduling often killed off any romance. Then she matched with a man named Paul on the dating website PlentyofFish.

Smooth-talking Paul shared her love for fine dining, and invited her to the Tam O’Shanter, one of LA’s oldest eateries. “I’m going to go with or without you,” he told her, removing any indecision. Soon she was driving across the city, full of hope that Paul, 43, could be ‘the one.’ He had sent her videos of his two adorable young sons, and said he was the CEO of the LA Fitness gym franchise. But as Moon handed her car keys to the valet, she saw her date arrive on foot. She wondered, did he not have a car? Paul’s dyed-black hair was thick with gel, and he exuded short-guy energy. As he held open the restaurant door, his light green eyes sparkled.

“Look how beautiful she is!” said Paul, as the waitress seated the couple. Then, loud enough for everyone to hear, he boomed: “I don’t deserve to be with her! She’s so gorgeous!” Paul edged his seat closer to hers, then got to work on the menu. Moon said he ordered: “A salad, chicken, fish, and two lobster tails on the side.” When Paul finished, he summoned two more lobster tails. After rounding off the meal with a devilish chocolate soufflé, Paul declared that he wanted to date Moon “exclusively,” then stepped outside to make a phone call. “A few minutes in, I had a funny feeling,” she said. He never came back.

Hot with embarrassment, Moon told the maître d’ she’d been ditched. She had never experienced anything like this. Soon the waitress was sitting in her date’s empty chair, crying. “I wish I could take care of your bill,” she sobbed. “I’m so sorry.” But Moon had no tears to cry. She paid the $250 bill and marched out, imagining the cost of the meal in emergency room hours.

By the time she reached home, Moon was fuming. When Paul sent her a text message asking “Hi. How are you?” she exploded. She called a girlfriend who convinced her to put the word out. It was late at night when Moon angrily typed a Facebook status update: “Here are the pics of the man who ditched me at dinner...Please share on your FB and tell the story so this loser doesn’t do this to others!” But it was too late. Her post went viral, and her inbox filled with other victims of the same man. His name was not Paul Azini, as he had told Moon, but Gonzales. He’d told women he was an NBC sports editor, a sports agent, and that he worked for the Lakers. Gonzales was seemingly everywhere. A widow from Calabasas claimed he’d ditched her at the Cheesecake Factory in Sherman Oaks. “Do you know if he ever lived in Colorado?” asked someone else. His victims all thanked Moon for being ‘their voice.’

“Us girls need to stick together,” Moon replied, and decided to put it all behind her.

“Then the media happened,” she said.

Television stations, a producer from Steve Harvey’s radio show, and a Canadian podcast all contacted Moon for interviews. Victims shared other media requests on Facebook messenger. Appearing on a CBS News segment, Diane Guilmette revealed that Gonzales ordered not one, but two entrees at a Long Beach restaurant before leaving her with a $163 bill. “He’s a very, very handsome man,” admitted another scammed woman. “His eyes are absolutely gorgeous.” News anchors soberly issued bulletins warning viewers of the “handsome” bandit’s modus operandi: Gonzales quickly enticed women into a dinner date, ate like a king, then bolted, deleting his dating profile on the way out. The 5-foot-5-inch tall lothario mostly drank tea and the occasional glass of wine, but focused on high-ticket food items like filet mignon. US Weekly and CNN called him the “Dine-and-Dash Dater.”

Online, Gonzales sparked a national conversation fueled by gender politics. Some people argued that for decades women have done the same thing to men by expecting them to pick up the check. Scientists at the Azusa Pacific University examined the myth of the “foodie call”—finding that 23–33 percent of women had set up a date only for the purpose of getting a free meal. The report found that these female offenders scored highly on three ‘dark’ personality traits: “Psychopathy, machiavellianism, and narcissism.” Was this Gonzales too? Louis B. Schlesinger, a professor of forensic psychology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, who did not evaluate Gonzales, told me that his behavior “may just be his own personal gratification of getting one over on somebody.” But why?

Paul Guadalupe Gonzales had a difficult childhood. He was born in Montebello, California, in 1973, and grew up in Alhambra, in the San Gabriel Valley. In kindergarten, he chose to sit next to the teacher, preferring adult conversation. He idolized his father and was devastated by his parents’ divorce. When his mother met a new partner, 7-year-old Paul told the man his dad was the boxing champion Roberto Duran. It was one of his earliest fabrications. A teenage Gonzales became a fitness fanatic and at 17 found work as a gym membership salesman. He could sell anything to anyone, a relative told me. He intuitively understood a person’s wants and needs, and later sold everything from rubber bands to rifle scopes, earning $20,000 a month. He liked to order steak and lobster on his corporate credit card, gambled in Las Vegas, and dreamed of starting a sports betting company called Sportstradamus. But a messy divorce seemed to derail his life. By 2016 he was unemployed. Flat broke and stripped of his expense account, he started to look for ways to eat for free, a court later heard.

Gonzales signed up for various online dating accounts, presenting the picture of the perfect man. Perfectly groomed at all times, he looked like a hunk from a barber shop poster. His profile photos included tight-vest selfies taken in a gym’s mirror, and portraits with his two sons, whom he dressed in immaculate matching outfits. “I’m very fun, positive, humorous and adventurous. I love sports, music, water sports and traveling, and dining out and try[ing] new things,” his profile read. “Looking for someone to be super adventurous and create a lot of memories and smiles together.” He was against casual flings. “Not my style,” he wrote. “#TooClassy.”

Just days after his date with Marjorie Moon, Gonzales finished a crème brûlée at the Yard House in Long Beach. He held up two fingers, and told Irene Rodriguez that he “had to go number two,” before escaping into the night. “I just sat there dumbfounded,” she recalled, “I was mortified, embarrassed.” In July 2016, Lynise Levine, 52, said Paul had promised her Barbra Streisand tickets, but ditched her at a Mexican restaurant in Westwood.

Two years later, in the spring of 2018, he was still at it, leaving Tina Martinez to pay for his filet mignon at Smitty’s Grill in Pasadena. Even when Gonzales was arrested, for a “snip-and-ditch”—he fled a barber’s shop with the smock still tied around his neck—police found no outstanding warrants. His dates were too ashamed to report his dining misdeeds. Had he created the perfect crime?

On April 13, 2018, Detective Victor Cass was summoned to his sergeant’s office at the Pasadena Police Department. The 49-year-old investigator was handed an anonymous Crime Stoppers report concerning an incident at Buca di Beppo, an Italian chain restaurant in nearby Glendale. An onlooker had noticed a male diner abandon his date, and filled out an online report. Cass is slim, with tidy black hair, and holsters his Glock 9mm beneath sharply-cut designer suits. He specializes in commercial burglary, but unlike most detectives he has a Fine Art degree and leads a double life as a novelist. His romantic thriller, Telenova, was a Latin indie-publishing hit. Colleagues call him “Casanova.”

Cass is also a veteran of online dating. “I was divorced in 2003,” he told me, at an Irish bar in South Pasadena. He recalled a decade of searching and swiping before meeting his long-term girlfriend while on duty. “Back in the old days, I was on the more primitive dating sites like eHarmony, I even used online matchmaking services.” Over the years he met women from MySpace, Match and PlentyofFish (both owned by IAC, which also owns The Daily Beast), and Bumble. According to one wise-cracking cop in the office: “Maybe it takes a casanova to catch a casanova.”

Cass thought a ‘dine and dash’ was a fitting crime for a food-lover’s city like Pasadena. It is the birthplace of chef Julia Child, home to 500 restaurants, and one of America’s few Le Cordon Bleu culinary schools. To its 141,371 residents, Pasadena is known as the “City of Roses,” and it is Cass who cleans up its quirkier criminal cases. “They’re what we call the ‘X-Files,’” he told me. Recently, he captured the ‘Glass Man Burglar,’ a thief who skillfully removed window panes, and the ‘Guitar Bandit’ who delighted newspapermen by pulling off a “string” of thefts. When the detective typed “dine and dash” into Google, to brush up on the law, he was surprised to find hundreds of news reports about one local man named Paul Gonzales. “He had, like, fans, and they were like, ‘hey, he’s not doing anything wrong,’” said Cass. Some websites called Gonzales “scummy” and “Douchebag of the Week.” “This guy was not on any police department’s radar,” said Cass, “yet he was one of the most wanted men in America.”

At home, Cass had a daughter about to turn 18. He had taught her responsible dating, he said, including “how to spot deadbeat guys.” So far, he was impressed with her choices, but he found it hard to think about her falling victim to someone like Gonzales. As he nursed an off-duty pint of Irish lager, Cass told me that Gonzales was not just victimizing women, but “disrupting the internet dating economy.” He had to be stopped. The detective travelled to various apartments linked to the suspect, expecting to make a quick and easy arrest. But Gonzales had no fixed address. “We couldn’t just go out somewhere and pick him up,” he said. And so began the manhunt for Paul Gonzales.

Since the first restaurants opened their doors, innkeepers have been plagued by customers who wish to eat but not to pay. In 1885, a Boston Oyster House cashier complained to the Chicago Tribune about so-called ‘restaurant deadbeats.’ “What the devil a man thinks he is going to gain by robbing a restaurant of 35 or 50 cents is more than I can comprehend,” he said. Notoriety was the ambition of Belgium’s Titus Clarysse, who became famous for ripping off over 100 fine dining halls, but he was stabbed to death in 2014. Suspects included various restaurateurs. Meanwhile, Australia’s “dine-and-dash queen,” Lois Loder, 44, racked up thousands of dollars in unpaid restaurant bills before pleading guilty to 82 charges. She spent two years behind bars, because unlike Gonzales, she dined alone, making the restaurants her victim in the eyes of the law.

Cass studied the Crime Stoppers report, and realized he had no witnesses or victims, just the scene of an alleged crime. He telephoned Buca di Beppo and found the waiter on duty that night. He discovered that the victim paid the bill using her Visa credit card. He petitioned Visa to give him the name of the victim’s bank, and soon Cass was there, leaving a business card for their customer. A few days later, a woman named Daisy Valdez called Cass. She was the Buca di Beppo victim.

Like Moon, Valdez was a nurse, and when she met Cass outside a hospital in Upland, she was still wearing her blue scrubs. Cass showed her his six-pack—six mugshots, not his washboard stomach. Valdez easily identified Gonzales and his green eyes from the line-up of five Paul-a-likes, and told Cass a familiar story. She had matched with him on Bumble; he claimed he was a physical therapist with two daughters; at dinner, he ordered a chicken salad with added shrimp, sank an iced tea, then vanished. Out of embarrassment, she would later close down her dating profiles and never date online again.

The conversation “was all about him,” Valdez told Cass. She couldn’t get a word in. The divorced mother of three said she was convinced to meet him because he was so direct and persuasive. “You want to know how you get to know somebody?” he had messaged her. “You meet him right away.” Cass said that based on his own dating experience, he realized that Gonzales was a smooth operator. “Game recognizes game,” he said.

In a reversal of his usual investigations, Cass contacted various news outlets to ask for access to victims. He called producers and journalists who connected him to a dozen of Gonzales’s dates. He said that during interviews, many victims blamed themselves. Was it something they said, or did? Cass reassured them it wasn’t their fault. He’d have to convince them to overcome their embarrassment and give evidence in court, otherwise Gonzales might get away with it. “That was a big challenge to get them to open up, to get them to trust me,” said Cass. He promised them: “Justice will be served, you know, we’re going to do everything that we can to find this guy, to arrest this guy, to see that he goes to jail. That was a big deal for me.”

Cass interviewed Martha Barba, who said Gonzales invited her to an after-dinner fireworks show at the Rose Bowl in July 2016, but disappeared after telling her to “order dessert.” “I was embarrassed… I felt humiliated... and my self confidence, you know... just wondering what did I do? Did I say something?”

After paying the $180 bill, the single mother said she struggled to pay her rent.

Other victims said they were still struggling to deal with their emotions. After her date with Gonzales, Irene Rodriguez said she had trouble trusting anyone, and quit online dating forever. Another victim said: “It just makes you feel like a piece of crap.”

On April 27, 2018, a woman from Santa Clarita was arriving for a first date with a match from Bumble. Carol Meredith had lost her job of 17 years at a television studio, and was paying the bills with temporary work, while hoping to graduate from plus-size modeling to acting. “Mike” told her he was a sports agent, but later said he worked in advertising. “He just knew all the right things to say,” Meredith told me. He also sent her a fake photograph of a bodybuilder. By the time Meredith sat down in Pasadena’s Mercado restaurant, Mike had already polished off a plate of shrimp tacos. “I know it’s probably surprising,” he said, patting his stomach, “But I can eat, like, two meals.”

He ordered a carne asada and a glass of iced tea, while Meredith politely ate her chile relleno. Then, when Mike slipped away to use the restroom, he found the restaurant’s manager blocking his path. Justin Leyvas recognized the man’s face from the television. He called up a photo of Paul Gonzales on his cellphone.

“You’re the notorious dine-and-dash dater?” he asked. “That’s you, right?”

“Yes?” said Gonzales, stunned.

“Well I’m not going to serve you,” said Leyvas firmly, and chased a flustered Gonzales out of the restaurant.

Leyvas appeared at Meredith’s table and showed her his phone. Her meal was on the house, he said.

“You’ve been duped.”

Meredith said the incident left her feeling completely humiliated, and shattered her confidence. “When it happened to me, I was dumbfounded,” she said. “I was more angry than embarrassed.” Meredith swore she’d never date online again.

A few days later, the telephone rang on the desk of Detective Cass. It was now the second week of his search for Paul Gonzales, and he had plenty of witnesses, but few leads. He picked up.

“He’s struck again,” said his lieutenant.


“Yes, it’s on the news, go look. He hit Mercado.”

Cass opened an internet browser and typed “dine and dash” for the hundredth time. Inside Edition had the scoop. “This man needs to be stopped,” Carol Meredith said into the camera. “God knows how many other women he’ll attempt to do this to.” Mercado was just nine blocks away. Cass threw on his jacket. What was once a cold case with dead-end leads was now a live one with a suspect at large. The television crew had beaten him to the latest victim, but Cass knew to interview everyone—not just the manager. A server told him: “I also work at Houston’s... this guy struck there two days ago.’”

Cass knew Houston’s had security cameras. He raced there to score video of Gonzales in action before the restaurant routinely erased it at the end of the week. He watched Gonzales slipping out the front door, mid-meal. “You can see the time frame, everything was brilliant, great evidence,” Cass said. Back at his office, Cass started to assemble his victims. He saw that the women were from all backgrounds, all races, and ages. Gonzales didn’t seem to have a type, he just wanted three courses and zero bill. As more women encouraged each other to come forward and give evidence, it was as if he was arranging characters in a plot from one of his own books.

A Victor Cass novel usually features an ensemble of bodacious female characters, who must overcome adversity by working together. In Black Widow Bitches, his dystopian war thriller, a ragtag group of American women train to become deadly combat troops, helmed by Elias Marin, the only male officer able to lead them. Telenova revolves around three outrageous Latin women and a raunchy daytime soap opera. The jacket promises: “a girls’ night out, friendship drama, and sexy romps.” His writing explores the interior lives of women more emphatically than it does men. “I am half woman on my mother’s side,” he joked.

Cass applied for a search warrant on Gonzales’s cellphone. He analyzed data records to triangulate his suspect’s movements, hoping to find where Gonzales laid his head. “It was all over the South Lake District, at all hours of the night, which led me to believe he was homeless,” said Cass. One location was a parking structure where transients surreptitiously charge their phones. Cass had a theory that Gonzales’ phone held an “electronic shrine” of evidence. “We’ve all kept text messages and photos of girls we like,” Cass admitted. “I needed to get his phone before he erased everything.”

On May 17, 2018, Paul Gonzales was captured, but not by Detective Cass. An Inside Edition TV crew was laying in wait outside a Pasadena branch of Starbucks. They spotted Gonzales enjoying a coffee just yards away from Mercado, the scene of his last crime. “You’ve been going to local restaurants with women you meet online,” the anchorman barked at a startled Gonzales, as he crossed the street. “You’ve been leaving them with the check. Don’t you feel bad about that? Why don’t you apologize to them?” But Gonzales didn’t apologize. He ran away, trailed by men carrying cameras and a boom microphone.

On May 21, Cass tracked down Gonzales’s ex-wife, an aspiring Instagram influencer who curates a food and fashion account. Among the avocado crostinis and cucumber margaritas, Cass recognized the two children he had seen in photographs Gonzales had sent victims. Over the phone she dished up a brief history of her life with Gonzales: They had fallen in love, married, and settled down, but their relationship soured. She told Cass that Gonzales had once enjoyed high-paying jobs, but not any more. She didn’t know where he lived. (She did not respond to requests for comment.)

On May 25, at a luxury apartment building in Pasadena, Cass pressed the buzzer to the home of Gonzales’s mother. “We spoke at length about Paul,” he told me. She is a respected clinical social worker, he discovered, and her other children are settled and successful. She didn’t know where her son was either, and didn’t know about the allegations. She told me Cass questioned her more like a psychologist than a policeman. “She said, ‘One thing I can tell you is that he never forgave me for leaving his Dad when he was a kid,” recalled Cass.

He’s been making women pay ever since, he thought. Literally.

Cass, who served on the police department’s mental health crisis unit, had become fascinated by Gonzales. “I tried to pin down his motivations and psychology,” he told me. As the detective built a profile of his suspect, he realized that in 26 years of policing this was his strangest and most difficult case. He’d now gathered 20 victims, from all over Los Angeles County. Each victim seemed to lead to three more.

Cass knew the biggest challenge would be to convict Gonzales. His crime was not theft because the restaurants were usually paid. Cass visited the district attorney’s office, where they hatched a plan. All of Gonzales’s victims told Cass that they were “too embarrassed and afraid” to make a scene. He thought of victim Yolanda Lora, who was conned into buying Gonzales a seafood dinner at a Beverly Hills restaurant so swanky she couldn’t pronounce its name. Lora was so scared that she had to “build up the courage” to tell the waiter what had happened. A deputy D.A. said the fear element could amount to extortion, a felony. The charge could mean serious jail time for Gonzales. But after a month, Cass was no closer to finding him.

One afternoon Cass had an idea for a honeytrap. “We had a female officer create an online dating account,” he told me. “We had her go on Bumble and create a profile to see if she could lure him and save all the text messages... We wanted to see if Paul bites.” They planned to send the officer on a date with Gonzales, wearing a wire. They uploaded some photographs in the office and together they wrote her profile. She was in for a surprise.

“The experience for women online is vastly different than for men,” explained Cass. “An attractive woman can set up a dating site and instantly—like within 20 minutes—can have 50 contact requests or messages. Our officer was horrified at what these guys sent her.” Cass said the unnamed officer is gay, and was appalled at the wild messages she received from men. “Crazy statements, outrageous things,” said Cass. “Dick pics.”

The experiment was a failure.

“Sadly he never took the bait,” he said.

Cass started to worry that he’d never catch his man. “You know, a lot of time had passed, and we weren’t able to get this guy,” he said. If he didn’t make progress, he’d have to focus on other pressing cases: The “Hipster Shoplifter” was targeting the Madewell store in Pasadena’s Old Town. Cass was waiting on DNA results to convict the “Rock Burglar” who smashed into buildings by hurling stones through windows. Cass was also concerned that if another officer arrested Gonzales, they wouldn’t know to confiscate his cellphone. Maybe Gonzales would sit in the back of a squad car and delete his digital trophies. “This is probably gonna sound kind of weird, OK, but, I’m a pretty religious dude. Presbyterian,” Cass told me. “I believe that everything is predestined to happen. I pray all the time.” Cass said he hit his knees and prayed, “God, let me find him.”

On the evening of August 25, 2018, Cass was working overtime in Pasadena’s Old Town. “I know a lot of people down there so I get to socialize, and you know, it is kinda fun,” he told me. “It’s kind of interesting to see all the characters. You’re people-watching.” It’s also a good opportunity to look for revellers with outstanding warrants. He had been tailing Gonzales for four months, and started to see Paul-a-likes everywhere. “I had gotten all the victims, I felt that I had solidified the case,” said Cass. “I just had a feeling because of all the work I’d done, the guarantees I’d made the victims, I had a feeling it would be me.”

At just after nine o’clock, Cass noticed a street vendor strolling down the boulevard, hawking Lakers T-shirts to tourists. Springing to action, he grabbed the man and threw on the handcuffs. Cass recalled: “My partner, he told me... man, Cass is really cracking down these vendors!” But then he heard the detective make the radio call: “This is footbeat three, we have Paul Gonzales in custody... the Dine-and-Dash Dater.”

News of the arrest quickly circulated the police department. Though it was a stroke of luck and not a splashy sting or epic foot chase, Cass was a hero. “I think the victims were extremely pleased and happy,” he said. “They never thought they would see the day that this guy got busted.” That night, Cass typed out a text message to the victims, with the happy news.

Carol Meredith was at her desk when the text message landed.

“Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!” she screamed.

Just as Cass predicted, his suspect’s phone was full of dating trophies—photographs of hundreds of women. “I was able to go back to at least 2013,” said Cass. During his interogation, he asked Gonzales if he was a “demented, sick individual,” or if he was like “sex perverts that... get some kind of perversion out of victimizing people?” Or, was he another type of person, “somebody who deep down has a lot of anger... because they were abandoned when they were young by their mothers?”

Maybe, said Cass, “you have an abandonment issue.”

“The reality is I did it one time,” Gonzales pleaded. “One accident without meaning... it wasn’t... it wasn’t like, planned.”

“Well, no, Paul, it wasn’t just one time. It was multiple times,” said Cass. “And in fact, during my investigation, I found out that over a three-year span you did it to at least… thirteen women.”

“He made out he was a perpetual dating victim,” said Cass. “He tried to portray himself as the one getting catfished in relationships.” Gonzales told Cass about various physical ailments, including an injured back, and claimed that he only felt better when he ate fine foods. If he didn’t, Cass recalled, he said he’d “get weaker in both body and mind. He would... feel numbness and pain to his body.”

On August 27, 2018, Gonzales was charged with seven felony counts of extortion, two felony counts of attempted extortion, and one felony count of grand theft. For good measure, prosecutors added two misdemeanor counts of defrauding an innkeeper, and petty theft. Together, he faced a possible maximum penalty of 13 years in prison, a year for each of his victims. The heavy charges further divided the public. “Felony for eating and running?” someone scoffed on Twitter. “What a waste of tax dollars to imprison someone for that.” Unable to make bail, set at $315,000, Gonzales remained in custody until his court date. “He told me stories about inside the jail,” Cass recalled, when they later crossed paths in a courthouse hallway. “He lived like a hero in there. He said, you know, inmates were high-fiving him, and... even some of the deputies.”

On September 11, 2018, Gonzales appeared at a preliminary court hearing, where some of his female victims sarcastically complimented his lime green prison jumpsuit. “He was definitely the cleanest, sharpest looking guy in court, and county jail, probably,” Cass recalled. “His hair was always coiffed. And he always came in looking like he was ready for one of his dates.”

Gonzales pleaded not guilty, then listened to witness statements from half a dozen of his victims. On the witness stand, Wendy Luttrell told the court about a February 2018 date at Pasadena’s Parkway Grill. Gonzales said he needed to wire money to his daughters in college in Arizona, then vanished. “I didn’t have a choice. He left so I had to pay the bill,” said Luttrell, a 52-year-old divorcée. She avoided causing a scene in front of restaurant staff, and added: “It’s not their fault that he’s a jerk.”

Gonzales, now 45, interrupted proceedings to complain to the judge about his court-appointed lawyer. While it would have made for incredible entertainment, the judge shut down the idea of Gonzales representing himself. After hearing the evidence, the judge concluded that the women were the victims. “But victims of what crime? That’s really the issue,” he said, before concluding it wasn’t extortion. When the prosecution didn’t agree with the judge’s ruling, the deputy district attorney asked for a rare motion, sending the case to a superior court for ruling. “It was all very dramatic,” recalled Cass. A superior court judge agreed it wasn’t extortion. Instead, Gonzales pleaded no contest to four misdemeanors: three counts of defrauding an innkeeper by non-payment, and one count of petty theft.

While it was not the 13-year sentence Cass had hoped for, Gonzales was sent to jail for 120 days, and ordered to pay $240 in restitution to two of his victims—proving there’s no such thing as a free lunch. He was placed on probation for three years, and must stay at least 100 yards away from five restaurants. He was also barred from the dating sites PlentyofFish and Bumble, who sent flowers to victims, including one bouquet that carried a note reading: “Sorry, we got your back, girl.”

There was a party atmosphere outside the courthouse after the judge handed down his sentence. “I believe in karma,” laughed Carol Meredith, who had encouraged other victims to speak to the media, and the police. “He doesn’t have to worry about any meals now, he’s gonna get three square meals a day!” Eight of the witnesses arrived at a nearby restaurant for happy hour, where glasses were clinked and appetizers shared. “It was pretty awesome,” said Marjorie Moon. “We all got to meet each other and know that you’re not the only one, it was kinda nice.” When a waiter arrived with the ladies’ check, he was surprised by a gale of laughter.

After he was released from jail, I tried to reach Paul Gonzales through his mother, who asked not to be named. She believes her son “did not commit any crimes.” Her professional perspective as a clinical social worker is that her son’s behavior may have been caused by his “ugly” break-up, which triggered unprocessed pain from his childhood—the feeling of being abandoned. She was upbeat about his future, and said he is focused on being a great father to his sons. “He is all about reading to them, explaining everything to them...doing math with them… baseball, basketball, and football. He’s all about their social skills... how to order food at a restaurant.”

Eventually Gonzales agreed to meet me in April this year, in a Starbucks in Santa Monica, but later changed his mind about giving a full interview. Gonzales claimed he was innocent. He insists he only ran from one restaurant; he’d never met some of his alleged victims; the whole thing was a conspiracy. It was the women who “catfished” him by using outdated photographs, he said. “I got tired of paying for people who are scamming me.” According to Gonzales his dating days are over. He says he’s in a healthy relationship with newborn twins at home. He also boasted of a new, high-powered job for Nike and the NFL, which I suspected was another of his fabrications. (Nike and the NFL did not respond to a request for comment.)

“The construction of the fantasy seems to be an important part of his process,” said Dr. Frank T. McAndrew, a professor of psychology at Knox College. “The only thing that makes sense here is that Gonzales gets a rush from pulling off each new caper. The planning of it, luring the victim in, and—at least for the moment—being the center of a desirable woman’s attention.” McAndrew said he expected Gonzales to strike again, “as the thrill of possibly getting caught is probably part of the fun.” I thought about that when I met Gonzales for the last time at Starbucks, early one Sunday morning. He placed a used coffee cup on the counter and asked the server for a free refill. After he bounced off to find a table, a tired-looking manager appeared. “I’ve been here since 4:30 this morning and that man has bought nothing,” she said flatly. “He’s not getting a refill.” Out of embarrassment, I quickly paid for his drink.

At another café in Pasadena, Cass sometimes bumps into Gonzales, too. He’s pecking away at another book, based on a real-life villain who likes to eat but not to pay. You might see them one day, if you’re in the City of Roses, just two casanovas enjoying a cup of coffee.

Not long ago, I spoke to Carol Meredith, who told me that standing up for herself on Inside Edition gave her acting career a boost. She has since appeared in the CBS cop drama S.W.A.T., and General Hospital. She is still looking for love and has returned to online dating.

Marjorie Moon, who had sworn off restaurant dates, eventually agreed to meet another handsome stranger from a dating app. She found a babysitter, and drove across town, but this time her date picked up the check, she said, speaking from their honeymoon in Hawaii. ... ung-models

10. Got it?



Trump's business network reached alleged Russian mobsters
Oren DorellUpdated 11:10 p.m. ET March 28, 2017
President Trump and his properties have been linked to at least 10 wealthy former Soviet businessmen with alleged ties to criminal organizations and money laundering. USA TODAY

To expand his real estate developments over the years, Donald Trump, his company and partners repeatedly turned to wealthy Russians and oligarchs from former Soviet republics — several allegedly connected to organized crime, according to a USA TODAY review of court cases, government and legal documents and an interview with a former federal prosecutor.

The president and his companies have been linked to at least 10 wealthy former Soviet businessmen with alleged ties to criminal organizations or money laundering.

Among them:

• A member of the firm that developed the Trump SoHo Hotel in New York is a twice-convicted felon who spent a year in prison for stabbing a man and later scouted for Trump investments in Russia.

• An investor in the SoHo project was accused by Belgian authorities in 2011 in a $55 million money-laundering scheme.

• Three owners of Trump condos in Florida and Manhattan were accused in federal indictments of belonging to a Russian-American organized crime group and working for a major international crime boss based in Russia.

• A former mayor from Kazakhstan was accused in a federal lawsuit filed in Los Angeles in 2014 of hiding millions of dollars looted from his city, some of which was spent on three Trump SoHo units.

• A Ukrainian owner of two Trump condos in Florida was indicted in a money-laundering scheme involving a former prime minister of Ukraine.

Trump's Russian connections are of heightened interest because of an FBI investigation into possible collusion between Trump's presidential campaign and Russian operatives to interfere in last fall's election. What’s more, Trump and his companies have had business dealings with Russians that go back decades, raising questions about whether his policies would be influenced by business considerations.

Trump told reporters in February: "I have no dealings with Russia. I have no deals that could happen in Russia, because we’ve stayed away. And I have no loans with Russia. I have no loans with Russia at all."

Yet in 2013, after Trump addressed potential investors in Moscow, he bragged to Real Estate Weekly about his access to Russia's rich and powerful. “I have a great relationship with many Russians, and almost all of the oligarchs were in the room,” Trump said, referring to Russians who made fortunes when former Soviet state enterprises were sold to private investors.

Five years earlier, Trump's son Donald Trump Jr. told Russian media while in Moscow that “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross section of a lot of our assets" in places like Dubai and Trump SoHo and elsewhere in New York.

New York City real estate broker Dolly Lenz told USA TODAY she sold about 65 condos in Trump World at 845 U.N. Plaza in Manhattan to Russian investors, many of whom sought personal meetings with Trump for his business expertise.

“I had contacts in Moscow looking to invest in the United States,” Lenz said. “They all wanted to meet Donald. They became very friendly.” Many of those meetings happened in Trump's office at Trump Tower or at sales events, Lenz said.

Read more:

Dealings with Russian oligarchs concern law enforcement because many of those super-wealthy people are generally suspected of corrupt practices as a result of interconnected relationships among Russia's business elite, government security services and criminal gangs, according to former U.S. prosecutor Ken McCallion, as well as Steven Hall, a former CIA chief of Russian operations.

“Anybody who is an oligarch or is in any position of power in Russia got it because (President) Vladimir Putin or somebody in power saw some reason to give that person that job,” Hall said in an interview. “All the organized crime figures I’ve ever heard of (in Russia) all have deep connections and are tied in with people in government.”

FBI Director James Comey acknowledged at a congressional hearing into Russian interference in the U.S. election March 20 that many wealthy Russians may have close ties to the Kremlin and may be acting on its behalf.

Trump has not been accused of any wrongdoing in connection to any of the individuals mentioned in this article.

However, the deals, and the large number of Russians who have bought condos in Trump buildings, raise questions about the secrecy he has maintained around his real estate empire. Trump is the first president in 40 years to refuse to turn over his tax returns, which could shed light on his business dealings.

The White House declined to comment about this article, referring questions to the Trump Organization in New York. Amanda Miller, a spokeswoman for the Trump Organization, denied any transactions with people named in this article.

“The allegations ... are entirely without merit," Miller said in an email. "The Trump Organization never entered into a single transaction with any of these individuals and the condominium units were all owned and sold by third parties — not Trump.”

Trump's privately held company works through a network of subsidiaries and partnerships that make direct connections hard to trace, particularly since he has refused to release his tax filings. In addition, some of the Trump Organization's investors and buyers operate through shell companies and limited liability corporations that hide the identities of individual owners.

Trump and the Trump Organization signed licensing agreements for an ownership stake in properties such as Trump SoHo and Trump International Beach Resort, which bear the Trump name without requiring an investment by him. In the SoHo project, Trump received an 18% share of the profits in return for use of his name, according to a deposition Trump gave in 2007 for a defamation lawsuit he brought against an author.

The SoHo project
Donald Trump, Tevfik Arif and Felix Sater attend the
Donald Trump, Tevfik Arif and Felix Sater attend the Trump Soho Launch Party on Sept. 19, 2007 in New York. (Photo: Mark Von Holden, WireImage)
Among Trump's partners in the SoHo project was Felix Sater, a Russian immigrant who spent a year in prison for the 1991 stabbing. He later cooperated with the FBI and the CIA for a reduced sentence after he was convicted in a $40 million stock manipulation and money-laundering scheme in New York state.

Sater was a major player in the Bayrock Group, which developed the Trump SoHo. A former Bayrock finance director and partner, Jody Kriss, referred to him as a controlling partner, but Bayrock says he was an executive, not a partner.

Sater's criminal past was not well-known until publicly divulged in 2007. As he sought investment opportunities in Russia, he carried business cards identifying him as a senior adviser to the Trump Organization that included the company's email and phone number.

In February, Sater introduced a Ukrainian politician pushing a pro-Russian peace proposal to Michael Cohen, Trump's personal lawyer and former chief counsel at the Trump Organization, Cohen told NBC News.

Sater, 51, did not respond to multiple emails sent to his company or to calls seeking comment. He wrote on his company website that he made some bad decisions in the past but that he had paid his debt to society and helped the government with "numerous issues of national security, including thwarting terrorist attacks against our country.” His website was dark last week, displaying the message, "Maintenance mode is on."

One source of financing recruited by Bayrock for the SoHo project was Alexander Mashkevich, according to a deposition by former Bayrock partner Kriss in a federal lawsuit. A Bayrock investment pamphlet lists Mashkevich as a source of financing for the Bayrock Group. Mashkevich, a Kazakhstan mining billionaire, was accused in Belgium in 2011 in a $55 million money-laundering scheme. Mashkevich and two partners paid a fine and admitted no wrongdoing.

Federal indictments in New York, California and Illinois allege that people who bought Trump condos include felons and others accused of laundering money for Russian, Ukrainian or central Asian criminal organizations.

One indictment describes Anatoly Golubchik and Michael Sall, who own condos in Trump International Beach Resort in Sunny Isles Beach, Fla., and Vadim Trincher, who owns a unit in Trump Tower in Manhattan, as members of a Russian-American organized crime group that ran an illegal gambling and money-laundering operation.

Money laundering was an issue for Trump's Taj Mahal Casino in Atlantic City, which was fined $10 million in 2015 for failing to report suspicious transactions. Federal rules are designed to protect the U.S. financial system from being used as a safe haven for dirty money and transnational crimes, Jennifer Shasky Calvery, then-director of the U.S. Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCen), said at the time. It was the largest penalty the agency ever levied against a casino since reporting requirements began in 2003, according to The Wall Street Journal.

"The Trump Organization admitted that it failed to implement and maintain an effective (anti-money laundering) program; failed to report suspicious transactions; failed to properly file required currency transaction reports; and failed to keep appropriate records as required by (the Bank Secrecy Act)," FinCen said in a statement.

The statement said warnings over repeated violations went back to 2003, but it did not mention Russians.

In Los Angeles, the federal lawsuit filed in 2014 by lawyers for the Kazakh city of Almaty accuses former mayor Viktor Khrapunov of owning three Trump SoHo units through shell companies used to hide hundreds of millions of dollars allegedly looted by selling state-owned assets. Kazakhstan is a former Soviet republic.

The Trump SoHo project "was largely financed by illegally obtained cash from Russia and Eastern European sources, including money provided by known international financial criminals and organized crime racketeers," former prosecutor McCallion wrote on his blog in October. McCallion was an assistant U.S. attorney in New York from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s under presidents Carter and Reagan.

Sallie Hofmeister, a public relations adviser to Bayrock, said the company “flatly denies that any of its properties were financed using illegal money, and sees no evidence to the contrary provided by Mr. McCallion or anyone else.”

The Manafort connection

A view of the Trump SoHo hotel condominium building,
A view of the Trump SoHo hotel condominium building, on Feb. 21, 2017 in New York City. The development of Trump SoHo, completed in 2010, was constructed in partnership with the Bayrock Group. (Photo: Drew Angerer, Getty Images)
McCallion, as a private lawyer, also represented former Ukrainian prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko in a 2011 lawsuit alleging that Paul Manafort, Trump's former campaign manager, engaged in a racketeering and money-laundering scheme to hide $3.5 billion in stolen funds, much of it by buying U.S. real estate.

Manafort's co-defendants were Dmitry Firtash, a Ukranian gas executive under federal indictment for bribery, and Semyon Mogelivich, identified by the Justice Department as head of a transnational criminal organization that posed a threat to U.S. national security. The lawsuit was dismissed in 2015 because Tymoshenko was unable to show the role of each defendant in the alleged money-laundering plot.

Manafort resigned from the Trump campaign in August, days after Ukrainian investigators alleged that secret ledgers showed $12.8 million was put aside for Manafort by the party of pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych, who was ousted in a popular uprising in 2014. More details about the alleged secret payments surfaced March 20.

Manafort, who has acknowledged working for pro-Russian Ukrainian politicians, has denied receiving off-the-books pay and said his compensation covered campaign staff, polling and television ads in Ukraine.

Manafort also allegedly worked for a Russian billionaire to advance Putin's interests a decade ago, the Associated Press reported March 22.

Firtash, a major donor of Yanukovych's party, was indicted in 2013 by U.S. prosecutors in Chicago for allegedly paying officials in India $18.5 million in bribes for licenses to mine titanium ore. Firtash said he is an innocent victim of American efforts to punish political allies of Putin. His extradition from Austria to the United States was approved in February and then put on hold while an Austrian judge considers a Spanish indictment against him on charges of money laundering and organized crime.

In an interview with USA TODAY, McCallion said he spent years looking into the Trump Organization, the businesses and individuals that dealt with it, and the possibility that Trump's real estate empire may depend on hundreds of millions of dollars from Russians.

“The FBI is always concerned if public officials can be blackmailed,” McCallion said. “It’s Russian-laundered money from people who operate under the good graces of President Putin. If these people pull the plug on the Trump Organization, it would go down pretty quickly.”

Luke Harding, author of A Very Expensive Poison, about the 2006 lethal poisoning of defected Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko with radioactive polonium-210 in London, said the lawlessness in former Soviet republics like Russia, Ukraine and Azerbaijan explains why businessmen from those countries seek safe havens to invest their wealth.

“If you steal money in a place like Russia, you have a problem,” Harding said. “You need to convert it to rubles and dollars and put it somewhere someone can’t steal it from you. One place to do that is buy real estate in New York, Miami or London.”

Ariel Cohen, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council think tank, said not all wealthy Russians are crooks or beholden to Putin. “It’s more complicated than that," Cohen said.

"There are oligarchs who are FOPs (friends of Putin) and there are those who lost their assets due to corruption, abuse of power, a crummy legal system and the lack of property rights," he said. "Many of these people moved abroad, to London, New York and Florida. They are refugees from the corporate raiding Russian-style practiced for the last couple of decades."

Some became wealthy before Putin's rise to power "and in some cases are in hidden resentment or quiet opposition to Putin," Cohen said. “A lot of these people run big businesses, banks, retail, oil and gas, and these are legitimate businesses that pay taxes" in Russia.

Here is a closer look at some of the Trump project investors or condo buyers with alleged ties to organized crime and the Russian government:

Felix Sater

Sater spent a year in prison for stabbing a man in the face with a broken margarita glass at the Rio Grande restaurant and bar in New York in 1991.

A federal criminal complaint in New York in 1998 accused Sater of money laundering and stock manipulation but was kept secret by prosecutors because the Russian immigrant was working as a CIA informant, according to numerous published reports. Salvatore Lauria, a co-defendant, co-wrote in a 2003 book that he and Sater sought to reduce their sentences by acting as middlemen for the CIA to buy weapons that fell into the hands of mobsters after the fall of the Soviet Union. The scheme fell apart, but the relationships remained, according Lauria's book, The Scorpion and the Frog: High Crimes and High Times.

Kriss, a former finance director for the developers, accused Sater, Lauria and Bayrock partners in a 2010 federal lawsuit of diverting millions of dollars to shell companies to avoid U.S. taxes. He also claimed they kept secret Sater's criminal past and his guilty plea to racketeering charges while “he was aiding the prosecution of his Mafia and Russian organized crime confederates.”

Kriss alleged that while Bayrock was seeking money from foreign investors for Trump SoHo, it considered two groups of Russians with offices in Iceland. One group offered better terms, but Bayrock rejected that and went with the FL Group, which provided $50 million in financing and was “in favor with Putin,” according to the original complaint. The lawsuit is still pending, but without that allegation.

Sater and his co-defendants denied the allegations, calling Kriss’ lawsuit a long-running extortion scheme. But many of the racketeering and fraud claims against them survived a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, according to a Dec. 2 order signed by U.S. District Judge Lorna Schofield.

Sater's criminal past came to light in 2007. That year, Trump testified in a deposition in a defamation lawsuit that he didn't think Sater was a principal at Bayrock and that he was considering not doing business with him anymore. But Sater subsequently traveled to Russia carrying business cards identifying him as a senior adviser to Trump with a Trump Organization phone number and email address, according to photos of the card posted online by NBC, the BBC and other news organizations. In 2013, Trump said in another deposition that he didn't think Sater was connected to the Mafia, that Sater mostly dealt "with my company, not me" and that "if he was sitting in the room right now I really wouldn't know what he looked like."

Sater told The Washington Post last year that he met one-on-one numerous times with Trump. He met alongside Donald Trump Jr. in Phoenix with local officials, and in New York he met repeatedly with Trump and his staff to talk about potential deals in Los Angeles, Ukraine and China, the Post reported.

Trump's lawyer, in interviews with The New York Times and the Post, downplayed the relationship between the two men, saying Trump met and spoke with lots of people but his relationship was with Bayrock, not Sater. Sater did not respond to calls and emails sent to his office.

Alexander Mashkevich

Mashkevich, a Kazakh mining billionaire, was another source of funds for the SoHo project, according Kriss’ lawsuit. Bayrock's investment pamphlet describes him in general as a source of Bayrock financing.

Investigators in Belgium accused Mashkevich and two of his Kazakh business partners of money laundering and forgery connected to the $55 million in alleged bribes they received from a Belgian company in the mid-1990s, according to the Financial Times. In 2011, all three men agreed to pay an undisclosed fine to settle the case. They admitted no wrongdoing, and the charges were dropped.

Mashkevich and principal Bayrock partner Tevfik Arif were embroiled in a case in 2010, when Turkish police alleged prostitution and human trafficking after they raided a luxury yacht that Mashkevich chartered. After police boarded the Savarona — once owned by the founder of the modern Turkish state, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk — they arrested 10 wealthy men, including Arif, a former Kazakh official. They also found nine young women from Russia and Ukraine — two were 16 years old — and “a huge amount of contraceptives,” according to the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth.

Mashkevich, who was not at the scene, and Arif denied being involved in anything illegal. The women stayed silent about their involvement, according to published reports. Mashkevich was not charged with a crime. Arif was charged but acquitted, and the court file was sealed.

Peter Kiritchenko

Kiritchenko, a Ukrainian businessman who owned two condominiums with his daughter at Trump International Beach Resort in Sunny Isles Beach, Fla., was named in a money-laundering scheme involving former Ukraine prime minister Pavlo Lazarenko.

According to federal prosecutors in San Francisco in 2009, Kiritchenko helped Lazarenko launder millions of dollars obtained through extortion by purchasing luxury real estate in the United States and other countries. Kiritchenko was convicted of one count of receiving stolen property in California after he testified against the former prime minister. Lazarenko was sentenced to eight years in federal prison and fined $9 million after he was convicted on multiple counts of money laundering.

A federal appeals court said Kiritchenko was a "deep and willing" accomplice "in the heart of the conspiracy."

Viktor Khrapunov

Khrapunov, a former Kazakhstan energy minister and mayor of Almaty, owns three units in the Trump SoHo through shell companies, according to lawyers for the Kazakh city who filed a 2014 federal lawsuit against him in Los Angeles. Almaty's lawyers alleged in the lawsuit that Khrapunov used real estate in California, New York, Europe and the Middle East to hide hundreds of millions of dollars looted by selling state-owned assets. Khrapunov, who lives in Switzerland, denies the claim, saying he and his family are being targeted by a political opponent, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev.

Anatoly Golubchik, Vadim Trincher and Michael Sall

Three Trump condo owners — Golubchik, Trincher and Sall — were convicted in 2013 in federal court in New York of participating in an illegal high-stakes sports betting ring for a Russian-American organized crime group. The betting ring operated illegal gambling websites and catered almost exclusively to wealthy oligarchs from the former Soviet Union, according to prosecutors.

Golubchik and Sall own Trump condos in Sunny Isles Beach. And professional poker player Trincher owns a condo in Trump Tower in New York City.

Golubchik and Trincher were principal leaders of the enterprise, which included money laundering and extortion, prosecutors charged in the indictment.

The godfather of the operation was identified as Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov, who federal prosecutors said was a Vor, “a powerful figure in former Soviet Union organized crime” who never left Russia because he was under indictment in the U.S. for his role in allegedly bribing officials at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.

Sall helped launder tens of millions of dollars from the gambling enterprise, prosecutors said when they announced that all three condo owners pleaded guilty to lesser charges. Sall pleaded guilty to interstate travel in aid of an unlawful activity — illegal gambling. Golubchik and Trincher pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit racketeering. Tokhtakhounov remains in Russia, which does not have an extradition treaty with the United States. ... /98321252/

11. Got it?


12. GOOD. Stay woke to this.

Because I haven't even gotten into LCN's prostitution rings - and how the mobsters who ran them were in business with Trump org.

The Many Times Donald Trump Has Lied About His Mob Connections

He apparently lied under oath to deny he associated with organized crime figures. ... a-figures/

CODA - The pedophiles keep rolling in. This isn't gonna stop. B/c dotard launders money for the global rape trade (psst... that's a BIG profit center for RUS organized crime). We got baskets & baskets of these deplorables.

14. Nader - bagman & trafficker.

Mueller Witness Is Convicted Pedophile With Shadowy Past
March 15, 2018, 12:36 PM CDT

March 15, 2018, 12:32 AM CDT

George Nader in 1999.
Photographer: Ron Sachs/dpa/AP Photo
Washington (AP) -- How did George Nader — Lebanese-American businessman, globe-trotting "fixer," convicted child molester — get caught up in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation?

The answer, it seems, can be found in the shadows, where Nader has long operated. ... -pedophile

15. The Good 'Ole Boy Pedophile & Trafficker

Trump's Oklahoma campaign chair to plead guilt to child sex trafficking
Nov. 20, 2017, 4:14 PM CST / Updated Nov. 20, 2017, 4:14 PM CST

Ralph Shortey, a former Oklahoma state senator who last year served as Donald Trump's campaign chair in the state, was meticulous about keeping up his reputation as a pious man, according to several fellow Oklahomans. That reputation, however, has all but disappeared. According to Shortey's attorney, the former Republican lawmaker will plead guilty to one count of child sex trafficking on Nov. 30.

Ralph Shortey
Ralph Shortey is facing felony child prostitution charges after police say he solicited sex from a 17-year-old boy.Cleveland County Sheriff's Office via AP
Shortey, a 35-year-old married father of three, resigned from the state Legislature in March after being charged with several felonies, including engaging in child prostitution, after police found him in a hotel room with a 17-year-old male. Shortey's attorney, Ed Blau, confirmed that his client will plead guilty to a charge of child sex trafficking in exchange for U.S. prosecutors' dropping three child pornography charges against him.

"Mr. Shortey feels this is a necessary step in putting this painful and humiliating ordeal behind him, for both himself, his family and for the state of Oklahoma," Blau told local news site NewsOK on Friday.

Blau did not respond to NBC News' requests for comment.

While the age of consent in Oklahoma is 16, child prostitution statutes apply to anyone under 18. Shortey faces a minimum of 10 years in prison on the child sex trafficking charge.

According to court documents, Shortey and the unnamed teen, referred to as John Doe, connected on Craigslist in or around February 2016. From then until March, the documents state, Shortey "obtained at least one image of John Doe's penis." Then, on or around March 8, the teen messaged Shortey saying, I need money for spring break." The then-lawmaker asked if the teen would be interested in "sexual stuff."

Following a tip from John Doe's father, police went looking for the teen at a Super 8 Motel in Moore, Oklahoma, on March 9, at a room rented with Shortey's driver's license and credit card. When officers knocked, Shortey told them he and the teen were getting dressed.

"When Shortey opened the door, Doe left the room with his backpack, which contained a bottle of lotion," the police report stated. "Inside the room, Moore Police offers found Shortey's backpack. Shortey's backpack contained an open box of condoms and a laptop computer."

The report also stated Shortey was in possession of child pornography that "depicts a man engaging in sexually explicit conduct with a prepubescent girl."

For LGBTQ advocates in the heartland, Shortey's fall from grace exposed the "family values" politician as a hypocrite. Troy Stevenson, executive director of the LGBTQ organization Freedom Oklahoma, said he knew Shortey as a person who cared a great deal about maintaining his image as a good Christian lawmaker.

Stevenson described one encounter with Shortey ahead of a vote on an anti-transgender "bathroom bill" in which the lawmaker allegedly told Stevenson that while he couldn't vote against the measure because it would inflame his Christian base, he would abstain.

"Then, not 12 hours later, he sits in the committee and voted in the bill," Stevenson lamented.

This was not the first time Shortey voted against the state's LGBTQ community because of his Christian beliefs. He routinely voted with his Republican colleagues on bills targeting gay and transgender people, including a measure passed earlier this year that would allow business owners to discriminate against gay people.

Shortey is not the only social conservative who has taken a recent fall from grace either. Wesley Goodman, a Republican and first-term state representative in Ohio, resigned on Nov. 14 because of "inappropriate behavior." Several local news outlets, including The Cleveland Plain Dealer and The Columbus Dispatch, reported Goodman — a vocal proponent of "natural marriage" — was caught engaging in sexual activity with a male visitor in his legislative office. The New York Times and The Washington Post also reported on Goodman's alleged inappropriate behavior with young men.

"I've seen it in both parties, but there are these ultra right-wing politicians trying to prove their piety and running on issues of moral superiority while having behind-the-scenes lives," Stevenson said. "They don't think anyone is going to catch them."

Stevenson said he does not believe Shortey's sexual orientation is worth delving into.

"We've made it very clear that this isn’t about him being gay. It’s about him being a child predator and a sex trafficker and a hypocrite," Stevenson said. "He was also caught with child pornography of both males and females of a much younger age. He's an equal opportunity predator." ... ng-n822461

16. Oops! Another Southerner. HEE-HAW!

Ex-Trump campaign official charged with human trafficking
NEW YORK (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - A former Kentucky campaign official for President Donald Trump is due in court on Friday after being charged with human trafficking in the U.S. southern state.

Timothy Nolan, a retired district court judge, was arrested last month and charged with forcing a minor to engage in commercial sex around August 2016.

He is also charged with inducing a minor to engage in sexual activity and giving alcohol to a minor, according to the complaint.

Nolan’s defense attorney said he denied all the charges.

The 70-year-old was appointed to chair Trump’s electoral campaign in Kentucky’s Campbell County last year, according to court documents in an unrelated civil suit in which he was the plaintiff.

He was also involved in choosing local delegates tasked with casting votes at the July 2016 Republican presidential primary from which Trump emerged as the party’s nominee, according to the same documents.

At his arraignment in mid-April Nolan was ordered to wear an ankle-monitoring device and not to have contact with the alleged victims, Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear, whose office is prosecuting the case, said in a press release.

Nolan, now a boxing promoter, is listed as sitting on a Kentucky school board, according to the board’s website.

He will appear in Kentucky’s Boone District Court on Friday for a preliminary hearing.

If convicted, Nolan faces a maximum 20 years for the human trafficking charge, according to a Kentucky Department of Corrections spokeswoman.

In the United States, sex trafficking is defined as commercial sex induced by force, fraud or coercion, or involving a minor under the age of 18.

Reporting by Sebastien Malo @sebastienmalo. Editing by Emma Batha.; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's rights, trafficking, property rights, climate change and resilience. Visit ... SKBN17Y299

17. Here's just a rape-y one, like Assange. But we'll include him, 'cuz @KellyannePolls's baby, the CNP, was REALLY into him for a 2020 run.

The horrifying sexual misconduct allegations against Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, explained
He resigned after incredibly disturbing accusations of intimidation and sexual assault.

Dylan MatthewsMay 29, 2018, 6:07pm EDT
Jewish Cemetery Near St. Louis Vandalized In Apparent Anti-Semitic Act Michael Thomas/Getty Images
Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens resigned Tuesday afternoon, facing so many accusations and investigations that it’s hard to pinpoint the immediate cause of his downfall.

But the most horrifying scandal began earlier this year, when a woman accused Greitens of coercing her to perform oral sex, undressing, kissing and touching her without her consent, and threatening to release a nude photo of her if she told anyone about their encounter, which took place in 2015.

The sexual misconduct accusation — disturbing, detailed, and backed up by testimony from witnesses the woman spoke to at the time — was the centerpiece of a report from an independent panel of state legislators released in April. The report also included accusations that Greitens had physically abused the woman, including nonconsensual spanking and slapping. When local CBS affiliate KMOV broke the story in January, it did not include the accusations that the encounter was not consensual, instead describing it as an extramarital affair — the framing Greitens then used in public statements but which the legislature’s report suggests is inaccurate.

The report followed Greitens’s February indictment on a felony charge of invasion of privacy carrying up to four years of prison time, which saw him led away by the St. Louis sheriff’s office. The prosecutor in that case, a Democrat, dropped the charges in May, saying the judge in the case left her in an impossible position by allowing the defense to call her as a witness in a case she was prosecuting (they allege the prosecution is politically motivated). But a new special prosecutor could refile the charges and perhaps add more.

In addition, the Missouri legislature is currently in special session considering impeachment, and on the day of his resignation a court ruled that Greitens’ nonprofit had to turn over documents to the state legislators investigating him. Greitens also faces felony data tampering charges related to the use of a donor list from his veterans’ nonprofit to raise money for his 2016 gubernatorial campaign. Another prosecutor declined to file charges against Greitens to file a false campaign finance report, despite the state’s Republican attorney general, Josh Hawley, saying there was probable cause for an indictment.

Greitens, a Navy SEAL and Rhodes Scholar with a Bronze Star, a Purple Heart, and a doctorate in refugee studies, was the country’s second-youngest governor at 43 and getting presidential buzz before the allegations first emerged. Previously a Democrat, Greitens switched parties and successfully ran for Missouri governor as a Republican in 2016. A profile during the gubernatorial campaign declared, “If the man has an Achilles’ heel, it’s perfection.”

His actual Achilles’ heel appears to be that he is accused of sexually and physically abusing a woman (and playing fast and loose with campaign finance law).

Initially, in a news conference in advance of the April report’s release, he declared that “this was a private mistake that has nothing to do with governing,” that the matter would be put to rest at his trial. But by the end of May, the pressure became too much to bear.

What Greitens allegedly did

The account the woman accusing Greitens gave to the legislative committee is considerably more detailed than the initial stories that broke in January, and thus is the most complete accounting of what occurred to date. The committee talked to corroborating witnesses and concluded that the woman is “credible.”

The woman details a number of nonconsensual incidents, including when, during a haircut appointment on March 7, 2015 (before the revenge porn incident described above), Greitens felt up her leg all the way to her crotch without consent. On March 21, the woman says, she met Greitens at his house, supposedly to talk, and Greitens attempted to initiate “some sort of, like, sexy workout.”

She says he had “prepared clothes for her to change into,” and once she had changed into them, he led her into his basement, where he “taped her hands to pull-up rings … and then put a blindfold on her.”

She says he then drank water and spit it into her mouth, saying, “Before we start a workout you have to be hydrated.” “I realized he’s trying to kiss me,” she recalled, “but I don’t even want to kiss him. So I just spit it out. He does it and he’s like ‘You’re not going to be a bad girl, are you? Tries to do it again, to which I just let it dribble out, because I didn’t even want to kiss him again.”

Then, she says, Greitens began kissing from her neck down to her chest and ripped open her shirt, once again without consent. He then remarked on a scar on her stomach before continuing to kiss her stomach and pulling down her pants (again, without consent). That’s when she saw the flash of a camera through the blindfold, she said, and she recalls he told her: “You’re not going to mention my name. Don’t even mention my name to anybody at all, because if you do, I’m going to take these pictures, and I’m going to put them everywhere I can. They are going to be everywhere, and then everyone will know what a little whore you are.”

When he asked if she was going to mention his name, she said no through gritted teeth, and he replied, “Now that’s a good girl.”

He then began to kiss her stomach and motion toward attempting oral sex on her when, she says, “I just started freaking out and I started ripping down my hands. I was like, Get me out of here. I’m not ready for this. I don’t want this. I don’t want this.” “I was definitely fearful,” she said. She told him, “I don’t want this,” and, “I’m leaving,” and he “grab[bed] me and like — like, in a bear hug, and was like, Shh, shh, it’s okay, calm down, calm down, and like, lays me down on this ground in the basement.”

She says she started crying uncontrollably. “He starts undoing his pants, and he takes his penis out and puts it, like, near where my face is,” she recalls. At that point, convinced that he would not let her leave otherwise, she performed oral sex, she said. When investigators asked if it was consensual, she replied: “It felt like consent, but no, I didn’t want to do it. … Coerced, maybe. I felt as though that would allow me to leave.”

After that, he did let her leave, she says, though she returned later that day for her keys.

She returned to his house at 4 pm after work, where he explained the picture he took of her the following way: “He said, I know ... but you have to understand, I’m running for office, and people will get me, and I have to have some sort of thing to protect myself. And I thought about you, though, and I felt bad, so I erased it. To which – you know, I didn’t believe him, but at least, he, like, acknowledged that it was messed up and had a reason why.”

Later, at another salon appointment, the woman says she and Greitens kissed consensually, and that in May, they met up at his house and had consensual oral sex. Then in June, she went over to his house to make out. She says he asked her if she had slept with her husband since the previous incident. She said yes, and he slapped her in the face. She recalled, “I said, I think you’re screwed up from being in the Navy.”

The next week, she went over to his house for a “workout.” “At first it was fine,” she said, and then he began “fingering me and … out of nowhere, just, like, kind of smacked me and grabbed me and shoved me down on the ground. And I instantly just started bawling and was just like, What is wrong with you?”

The accusations in the report are considerably more serious and damning than the initial reporting that emerged in January. KMOV News 4 investigative reporters Lauren Trager and John O’Sullivan based their initial report (a video of which you can view here) on a recording of the woman provided to the station by the woman’s ex-husband.

The recording, taken in March 2015 without the woman’s knowledge, depicts her and her then-husband discussing her relationship with Greitens. The tape was made days after the alleged March 21 incident with revenge porn and attempted forcible oral sex, according to the ex-husband. It covered the revenge porn but didn’t go into detail about Greitens’s other nonconsensual acts.

Shortly after that story broke, TPM’s Allegra Kirkland spoke to the ex-husband’s lawyer and Missouri Democratic operative Roy Temple, who both reported that the ex-husband mentioned that Greitens slapped the woman before sex. The legislative report confirms this account.

Greitens also faced scrutiny for campaign finance offenses

The “invasion of privacy” statute under which Greitens has been charged applies to cases where a defendant “knowingly photographs or films another person, without the person’s knowledge and consent, while the person being photographed or filmed is in a state of full or partial nudity and is in a place where one would have a reasonable expectation of privacy, and the person subsequently distributes the photograph or film to another or transmits the image contained in the photograph or film in a manner that allows access to that image via a computer.”

It is a class D felony, carrying a prison sentence of up to four years.

Gideon Resnick
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And the other accusations in the woman’s account could open the door to much more serious charges, like sodomy and sexual abuse.

The case against Greitens hit a roadblock when a judge ruled that Kim Gardner, the St. Louis prosecuting attorney, could be called as a witness in the case. Gardner dropped charges to avoid appearing as a witness in her own case. But Jean Peters Baker, another county prosecutor, was appointed as a special prosecutor in the case, and has until the expiration of the statute of limitations on June 11 to refile charges, or file additional ones.

Whatever happens criminally, the scandal completely destroyed Greitens’s administration, which saw Republicans return to the office after eight years in opposition.

Greitens was fairly popular before the scandal — 20 percent more Missourians approved than disapproved of him in polling last October — but the indictment follows more than a few major clashes during his first year in office. Greitens pushed through a law making Missouri a right-to-work state; while today the state has relatively few union members, historically its brewing industry has been heavily unionized. Opponents have successfully forced a referendum on the issue onto the 2018 ballot, suspending the law’s enforcement in the process.

More damaging were revelations that his gubernatorial campaign relied heavily on massive amounts of dark money from wealthy donors. Missouri has historically had among the laxest campaign finance laws of any state; this upcoming election will be the first one in which state candidates face any contribution limits at all. Before, anyone — individuals, corporations, unions, PACs — could give an unlimited amount to campaigns. That changed with a 2016 ballot measure that finally enacted limits, which passed 70 percent to 30 but which Greitens opposed.

But even by the state’s lax standards, Greitens stood out. During the governor’s race, he received $1.975 million in one day, and no one knows where it came from. It went from a Super PAC called SEALS for Truth to Greitens’s campaign, and to SEALS for Truth from a nonprofit called American Policy Coalition. This is an easy way to use Super PACs and nonprofits to evade donor disclosure, but it’s rarely done as brazenly as in Greitens’s case.

There’s more, as the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s Kevin McDermott recaps in this helpful piece. Greitens was fined for not disclosing how his campaign got the donor list from his nonprofit, the Mission Continues; the Associated Press found that the campaign raised nearly $2 million from the Mission Continues donors, despite Greitens’s denials that he used the group’s list to fundraise. This lead to St. Louis prosecutor Gardner filing felony data tampering charges against him, and is a key part of the impeachment case against him.

Greitens has also refused to release his individual tax returns; the amounts that companies, wealthy individuals, and lobbyists donated to his inauguration parties; and the funders of A New Missouri, a nonprofit he founded as governor to promote his agenda.

The inauguration issue took on new prominence after his administration offered a no-bid contract to one of the inauguration donors. It’s hard to evaluate if there was a quid pro quo involved because no one knows how much the firm actually gave Greitens; he refuses to disclose the numbers. Members of the Missouri legislature introduced bills attempting to demand disclosure from secretive nonprofits like A New Missouri after it aired an attack ad against state Sen. Rob Schaaf, a Republican critic of Greitens, and displayed Schaaf’s personal cellphone number for viewers to call.

Greitens has defended his conduct by comparing dark money to the secret ballot: “The people who believe in voter intimidation believe that the minute you make a political donation, that you immediately need to turn all your information over to the government. … When people go in and they vote, nobody calls that dark voting.”

But a judge’s decision to order the disclosure of records from his nonprofit appeared to end his desire to fight back, as mere hours after that decision, he resigned his office.

CORRECTION: This article previously indicated that the invasion of privacy charge carries a maximum sentence of seven years; the correct number is four. ... -blackmail

18. And because we did Greitens, we gotta throw in this f*cker. Lord knows what he's up to, but it's really rape-y too.

Inside the Secret Life of a Tech VC and His $10 Million Infidelity
Michael Goguen has departed Sequoia Capital after facing sex abuse allegations.

Lizette ChapmanMarch 17, 2016, 3:21 PM CDT

Michael Goguen in 2012.
Michael Goguen in 2012.
Photographer: Lido Vizzutti/Flathead Beacon
Michael Goguen liked his privacy.

In the world of startups, full of bombast and self-promotion, the soft-spoken venture partner at Sequoia Capital specialized in quieter, more technical areas: He vetted networking, infrastructure, and security technologies for the firm before he departed abruptly last week. He spent millions of dollars to build a secluded, 32,000-square-foot getaway in Whitefish, Mont., complete with a racquetball court, underground shooting range, karate room, and 12-sided swimming pool. He kept a low social media profile, too: a bare bones LinkedIn profile, no blog, no Twitter account, and no Snapchat profile.

He also had a secret. But it turns out privacy had a price, and Goguen was not willing to pay the full amount. On March 8, Amber Laurel Baptiste sued Goguen for breach of contract, saying he owes her $30 million in addition to the $10 million he gave her in 2014. She also alleges that over the past 13 years, he sexually abused her and made her his sex slave after promising to rescue her from the human traffickers that brought her to the U.S.

Goguen, 52, says the relationship was consensual. In a graphic countersuit filed March 14, he provides what he says is e-mail and text message evidence showing she was a willing participant who became increasingly vengeful when he wouldn't make a greater commitment to her. The $40 million contract, both agree, was to stop Baptiste, 36, from going forward with a personal injury lawsuit that would have alleged he caused her bodily harm during sex. Goguen calls it extortion.

Sequoia Capital, where he had been a partner for 20 years, quickly severed all ties with Goguen and scrubbed him from their firm's site. (Goguen's lawyer, Diane Doolittle, says that it was a mutual decision to part ways.) It's now seeking replacements for him on the boards of 11 companies, including Cumulus Networks and R2 Semiconductor. In a statement, the firm said, "We didn't learn about these claims until March 10th, after they were filed in court. We understand that these allegations of serious improprieties are unproven and unrelated to Sequoia. Nevertheless, we decided that Mike's departure was the appropriate course of action."

Goguen did not respond to a request to comment for this article, but in a post on LinkedIn on Saturday, he wrote: "My departure allows me to focus with full force on clearing my name and vigorously pursuing justice."

Growing up in Bedford, Mass., Goguen loved going on hunting trips with his dad in the mountains of Maine despite temperatures that sometimes dropped to minus 10 degrees, according to an interview he gave to the Whitefish Pilot in 2012. The lanky teenager with a winning smile was attracted to highly technical engineering challenges and opted to pursue a degree in electrical engineering from Cornell University in 1986 before going on to earn his master's in the same field from Stanford University. He didn't go to business school or specialize in the high-octane networking that many other venture capitalist have perfected to build careers.

After Stanford, Goguen worked for a string of companies, including minicomputer maker Digital Equipment Corporation, which was acquired by Compaq and later merged with Hewlett-Packard. He also held positions at networking equipment company SynOptics Networking and Bay Networks—both also now defunct.

In 1996, when Goguen was 32, he joined Sequoia. One of the most respected venture firms in the world, Sequoia made a name for itself by backing Cisco, Apple, Google, and PayPal. The firm, which employs no female investing partners in the U.S., faced outrage on Twitter when, in December, Chairman Mike Moritz told Bloomberg TV that the firm wouldn't lower its standards to hire a woman partner (he later amended his statement).

The partners are tight. They meet every Monday for sometimes as long as 12 hours, and they decide all matters as a group, unlike many firms where more senior partners have the final say. Although each partner has a focus, they are slow to take credit for delivering the outsize returns that make venture capital famous.

"Fame relates to a different personal need which I don't think is very dominant around here," Goguen told the Daily Deal in 2000. "Sequoia operates as a tightly integrated team as opposed to a loose collection of stars." In his time at Sequoia, Goguen was a part of several major deals, including FireEye's initial public offering and the acquisition of Virident Systems for $685 million.

The firm parted ways swiftly and completely, says a person familiar with the matter, because Goguen showed "poor judgment" in signing the contract and then keeping it a secret from the others. Secrecy from other partners is a decidedly un-Sequoia value.

In 1999, Goguen divorced his first wife Lynne Izicki, with whom he had two children. Goguen met Baptiste at Baby Dolls Saloon, a Dallas strip club where she was working, in 2002. They began spending time together, according to both Baptiste's suit and Goguen's countersuit.

Goguen married again. That marriage, to Melinda Rose, lasted a few years, and after it was over, Goguen remarried again. His third wife, Jordana Crisel Woodland, is an actress and entrepreneur who is the chief executive officer of lingerie company Naked Princess Worldwide. The pair, who have since divorced, have three children together.

While juggling three wives, five kids, and at least a dozen board seats over 13 years, Goguen maintained a relationship with Baptiste. In his countersuit, Goguen says they got together only a few times a year, mostly at the behest of Baptiste; she says he begged to see her.

Goguen struggled to remain private. In her lawsuit, Baptiste alleges that during their relationship, Goguen used the name "Mark Smith" to conceal his identity. She also claims that in 2010 he requested Baptiste form two companies—Je Ne Se Que Enterprises LLC and charitable organization Every Girl Counts—so he could wire money directly to her without his wife knowing.

According to Baptiste's civil suit and his countersuit, Goguen agreed to pay Baptiste to keep quiet and go away. Both agree that after a $10 million installment, Goguen didn't want to hand over any more money. "Enough is enough," Goguen said in his countersuit.

About a decade ago, Goguen built a private retreat on a hill in rural Montana overlooking Whitefish Lake and the Flathead Valley some 20 minutes from Glacier National Park. He named the place Two Bear Ranch and constructed a New England-style covered bridge over the railroad running along the lake to link his house with the beach. "It's like a castle," one worker on the house, Paul Krause, told the Missoula Independent in 2004, as locals traded rumors about who the mystery owner was.

Whitefish is a small mountain town, and it didn't take residents long to get to know Goguen. Even among such celebrities as NFL quarterback Drew Bledsoe, actor Jim Nabors (aka Gomer Pyle), and singer Justin Bieber, who are frequent visitors, Goguen stood out. Over the years, he gave tens of millions to local charities, supporting public trails, a fitness center, a music school, skateboard park, food bank, and a saloon in the heart of downtown.

"He's a great asset for the Whitefish community," then-governor Brian Schweitzer told the Flathead Beacon, a Montana newspaper, in 2012, after Goguen donated more than $10 million to a state land trust and spent about the same amount to create a high-end helicopter search-and-rescue program for the community. "I'm proud that I know him as a friend, and I'm proud that I know him as a neighbor." Schweitzer did not respond to a request to comment for this article.

Jordan White, a longtime backcountry coroner who now runs Two Bear Air, said on Tuesday that the helicopter donation was unprecedented. "It changed the course of our community and our state," he said.

Goguen has also been a big political donor, giving more than $250,000 into the super-PAC backing John Kasich's presidential bid and another $90,000 to other Republican campaigns. On Tuesday, the super-PAC, New Day for America, told Yahoo News the money would be donated to charity.

Goguen, White said, is just a "normal guy" who "dresses the same and drives the same car" as anyone else in town. In Whitefish, Goguen said in 2012, "It's easy to forget the external stresses or problems you’re wrestling with in day-to-day life.” ... infidelity

19. They keep coming. Here's a sex-trafficker. dotard sure does loves him some RU sex-traffickers...

Venture Capital

Venture Capital Retweeted Venture Capital

Wow Another Sex trafficker in Trump Tower Boris Kogan, Russian Mobster/ arms dealer, money launderer (now deceased) trafficked Russian girls in Australia

The first post Inauguration condo sale at Trump Tower involved Boris and Julia Kogan. Boris is a notorious shady arms dealer, close friend of Putin and owner of Kaalbye Shipping Ukraine ... uguration/
Show this thread

Boris Kogan purchased a condo in Trump Tower right after Trump’s inauguration. Here info on his Australian sex business


Kogan’s weapons left from the key UKRAINIAN port of Oktyabrsk. Yes, where Flynn- indicted National Security Advisor, Manafort -indicted Campaign Chief, Cohen- indicted @POTUS Personal Lawyer and RNC chair were setting US policy, electing candidates & presenting Peace Plans
Image ... 2556863489

23. One of the grosser ones, in this list.
We’re up to 23.
That’s a lot, btw.

Sandy Hook lawyers say child porn found in Alex Jones’s emails

Published: June 17, 2019 6:29 p.m. ET ... 2019-06-17
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
User avatar
Posts: 32090
Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2005 11:28 pm
Location: into the black
Blog: View Blog (83)

Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Sun Jul 21, 2019 9:10 am

full articles from above post ...there was not enough room in reply to add theses

and btw Kellyanne Conway's grandfather was a mobster

Donald Trump defends Vladimir Putin over Alexander Litvinenko murder
The US Republican front-runner wades into the Litvinenko case to claim that "many people say it wasn't Putin"

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump
Donald Trump has defended Vladimir Putin after a British public inquiry found the Russian president "probably" sanctioned the assassination of Russian dissident Alexander Litvinenko in London.

Mr Trump waded into the case saying he had seen "no evidence" of Mr Putin's involvement, adding: "They say a lot of things about me that are untrue too."

The front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination has previously said he felt a "great honour" when Mr Putin praised him as an "absolute leader".

David Cameron has condemned Mr Putin for presiding over the "state sponsored murder" of Mr Litvinenko, who died from radioactive poisoning in 2006, and called it an "absolutely appalling crime".

A 327-page report released last week by retired High Court judge Sir Robert Owen concluded Mr Litvinenko was murdered by former KGB agents Andrey Lugovoy and Dmitri Kovtun.

"First of all, he says he didn't do it. Many people say it wasn't him. So who knows who did it?"
But Mr Trump told Fox Business: "Have they found him (Mr Putin) guilty? I don't think they've found him guilty. If he did it, fine but I don't know that he did it.

"You know, people are saying they think it was him, it might have been him, it could have been him. But in all fairness to Putin - and I'm not saying this because he says 'Trump is brilliant and leading everybody' - the fact is that he hasn't been convicted of anything. Some people say he absolutely didn't do it.

"First of all, he says he didn't do it. Many people say it wasn't him. So who knows who did it?"

Russia announced it may sue the British government over comments made in the wake of the inquiry.

Sergei Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, said: "If one hired a decent lawyer and analysed these facts, and the statements that have been made by the leadership of the British government, I think one could well find plenty of grounds for slander."

"If one hired a decent lawyer and analysed these facts, and the statements that have been made by the leadership of the British government, I think one could well find plenty of grounds for slander"
Sergei Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister
Mr Trump's defence of Mr Putin came as he hit a new high in US polls with less than a week to go before Iowa becomes the first state to vote.

A CNN national poll had Mr Trump with 41 per cent support among Republican voters. His closest rival for the Republican nomination, Texas senator Ted Cruz, was on 19 per cent and no other candidate reached double figures. It was the first time Mr Trump has topped 40 per cent in a CNN poll.

In the most personal attack yet on his main rival Mr Trump called Mr Cruz a "nasty guy" and a "jerk".

He said: "We can't have a guy who stands in the middle of the Senate floor and every other senator thinks he's a whack job."

Mr Trump took particular umbrage with a television advertisement, launched by Mr Cruz, in which he was accused of trying to bulldoze a widow's home to make a limousine car park. The widow accuses him of "having no heart".

Mr Trump said: "I never knocked down that house. Ted Cruz lies. He is a liar, that's why nobody likes him."

Mr Cruz said: "He is now insulting me every day. I will not respond in kind because the people of Iowa, and the people of this country, deserve something better." ... urder.html

Donald Trump defends Vladimir Putin over Alexander Litvinenko murder
The US Republican front-runner wades into the Litvinenko case to claim that "many people say it wasn't Putin"

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump
Donald Trump has defended Vladimir Putin after a British public inquiry found the Russian president "probably" sanctioned the assassination of Russian dissident Alexander Litvinenko in London.

Mr Trump waded into the case saying he had seen "no evidence" of Mr Putin's involvement, adding: "They say a lot of things about me that are untrue too."

The front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination has previously said he felt a "great honour" when Mr Putin praised him as an "absolute leader".

David Cameron has condemned Mr Putin for presiding over the "state sponsored murder" of Mr Litvinenko, who died from radioactive poisoning in 2006, and called it an "absolutely appalling crime".

A 327-page report released last week by retired High Court judge Sir Robert Owen concluded Mr Litvinenko was murdered by former KGB agents Andrey Lugovoy and Dmitri Kovtun.

"First of all, he says he didn't do it. Many people say it wasn't him. So who knows who did it?"
But Mr Trump told Fox Business: "Have they found him (Mr Putin) guilty? I don't think they've found him guilty. If he did it, fine but I don't know that he did it.

"You know, people are saying they think it was him, it might have been him, it could have been him. But in all fairness to Putin - and I'm not saying this because he says 'Trump is brilliant and leading everybody' - the fact is that he hasn't been convicted of anything. Some people say he absolutely didn't do it.

"First of all, he says he didn't do it. Many people say it wasn't him. So who knows who did it?"

Russia announced it may sue the British government over comments made in the wake of the inquiry.

Sergei Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, said: "If one hired a decent lawyer and analysed these facts, and the statements that have been made by the leadership of the British government, I think one could well find plenty of grounds for slander."

"If one hired a decent lawyer and analysed these facts, and the statements that have been made by the leadership of the British government, I think one could well find plenty of grounds for slander"
Sergei Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister
Mr Trump's defence of Mr Putin came as he hit a new high in US polls with less than a week to go before Iowa becomes the first state to vote.

A CNN national poll had Mr Trump with 41 per cent support among Republican voters. His closest rival for the Republican nomination, Texas senator Ted Cruz, was on 19 per cent and no other candidate reached double figures. It was the first time Mr Trump has topped 40 per cent in a CNN poll.

In the most personal attack yet on his main rival Mr Trump called Mr Cruz a "nasty guy" and a "jerk".

He said: "We can't have a guy who stands in the middle of the Senate floor and every other senator thinks he's a whack job."

Mr Trump took particular umbrage with a television advertisement, launched by Mr Cruz, in which he was accused of trying to bulldoze a widow's home to make a limousine car park. The widow accuses him of "having no heart".

Mr Trump said: "I never knocked down that house. Ted Cruz lies. He is a liar, that's why nobody likes him."

Mr Cruz said: "He is now insulting me every day. I will not respond in kind because the people of Iowa, and the people of this country, deserve something better." ... urder.html

The Many Times Donald Trump Has Lied About His Mob Connections

He apparently lied under oath to deny he associated with organized crime figures.

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters via ZUMA Press
Last week, media coverage of Donald Trump may have hit an inflection point, when major news outlets, while covering Trump’s latest birther shenanigans, characterized the GOP presidential nominee’s remarks as a lie. Though Trump has scored more pants-on-fire false statements than any other candidate in this campaign, mainstream news outlets have struggled over whether and how to use the L-word when reporting on him. With this birther-driven breakthrough in coverage, there now remain plenty of brazenly untrue assertions—deliberate lies or not—uttered by Trump that warrant close examination. One topic ripe for such scrutiny is Trump’s associations with organized crime. For years during his business career, Trump worked or associated with proven or alleged mobsters. (Trump’s longtime lawyer, the thuggish and deceased Roy Cohn, repped numerous Mafia bosses, some of whom were connected to Trump projects.) Yet when asked about his links to the mob, Trump has repeatedly made false comments and has contradicted himself—to such a degree it seems he has flat-out lied about these relationships, even when he was under oath.

If elected president, Trump would be in charge of federal law enforcement. So his attitude toward the mob could well be deemed a highly significant campaign issue—as could his long record of not telling the truth about his ties to organized crime. Here are some of the strongest examples of when Trump has spoken falsely on this matter.

The time Trump falsely denied in a deposition that he associated with any mob associates: In 2005, journalist Timothy O’Brien published a book on Trump, TrumpNation: The Art of Being the Donald, in which he referenced an already established fact: that in the early 1980s Trump began his casino empire in Atlantic City, New Jersey, by leasing property owned by Kenneth Shapiro and Daniel Sullivan. Shapiro, O’Brien wrote, was a “street-level gangster with close ties to the Philadelphia mob,” and Sullivan was a “Mafia associate, FBI informant and labor negotiator.” (Trump also had obtained Sullivan’s assistance when he had trouble with undocumented Polish workers who were demolishing the Bonwit Teller building in Manhattan to make way for Trump Tower.)

After the book came out, Trump sued O’Brien for libel and requested $5 billion in damages—not for O’Brien’s reporting on Trump’s connection to these mob-linked guys, but for the reporter’s assertion that the self-proclaimed billionaire was actually only worth between $150 million and $250 million. In 2007—two years before a New Jersey judge tossed out the case—Trump was questioned during a deposition. Over the course of the two-day-long interrogation, Trump was forced repeatedly to acknowledge having made false statements. And at one point, a lawyer for O’Brien and his publisher asked Trump a straightforward question: “Have you ever before associated with individuals you knew were associated with organized crime?”

Trump, who was testifying under oath, answered, “Not that I know of.”

That was a clear and unequivocal response. But it was not true. Two years earlier, O’Brien had interviewed Trump and specifically asked him about Sullivan and Shapiro. O’Brien, now an editor and writer at Bloomberg, has provided Mother Jones with a transcript of the interview, and it conclusively shows that Trump believed that these two men were associated with organized crime:

Trump: They were tough guys. In fact, they say that Dan Sullivan was the guy that killed Jimmy Hoffa. I don’t know if you ever heard that.

O’Brien: I have heard that. And that he was, you know…

Trump: A lot of people say

O’Brien: What I heard about both of them, and that anybody who wanted to get anything done down there [in Atlantic City], that if you wanted to deal with labor you had to deal with Sullivan, if you wanted to deal with politics you had to deal with Shapiro.

Trump: That was only in their imagination.

O’Brien: So that wasn’t true?

Trump: Yeah, it was really bullshit. But, but they were tough guys. And not good guys.

O’Brien: How do you handle people like that?

Trump: I just was able to handle them. And I, really, I was able to handle them. I found Sullivan to be the tougher of the two. I started hearing reports about Sullivan, that he killed Jimmy Hoffa….

O’Brien: Weren’t you worried about (1) getting screwed over (2) would you be able to hold on to the whole thing yourself (3) any kind of reputational risk given that they were tough guys?

Trump: I wasn’t worried because I felt I could handle it, but I felt I’d get a partner. But getting a partner wasn’t easy. And reputational, I didn’t want to have anything to do with those guys because I had heard bad, I had heard good and bad. Sullivan was like a con man and he would convince you that he’s virtually working for the FBI. You know, he’d always, and ultimately he was sent to jail on income tax evasion and it was the FBI that testified against him.

O’Brien: What was Shapiro like?

Trump: He was like a third-rate, local, real estate mob guy. Nothing spectacular. And I, you know, I got lucky. I heard a rumor that Sullivan, because Sullivan was a great con man, I heard a rumor that Sullivan killed Jimmy Hoffa. And because I heard that rumor I kept my guard up. You know, I said, “Hey, I don’t want to be friends with this guy.”

So here was Trump connecting Sullivan to the Hoffa murder and calling Shapiro a “mob guy.” And though Trump told O’Brien that he didn’t want to be friends with Sullivan, he did explore investing in a drywall company with Sullivan. (Trump backed out of the deal so that he wouldn’t complicate his application for a casino license in New Jersey.) After New Jersey regulators in 1982 granted Trump that casino license, they compelled the real estate mogul to buy the property that he had leased from Shapiro and Sullivan because of their backgrounds. Shapiro later told a federal grand jury that he had illegally funneled thousands of dollars to the Atlantic City mayor on Trump’s behalf—a charge Trump denied.

Trump was well aware that Sullivan and Shapiro were mobbed up, yet in the 2007 deposition he stated he had never associated with persons with such ties. He appears to have lied under oath in this instance.

The Trump campaign did not respond to a request for comment regarding Trump’s 2007 deposition statements and other remarks he has made over the years related to his interactions with mob associates.

The time Trump told Tim Russert he had nothing to do with organized crime figures: In the fall of 1999, Donald Trump renounced his Republican Party membership and declared he was considering running for president the following year on the Reform Party ticket. His exploratory bid would last only a few months. But during that stretch, he appeared on Meet the Press, and moderator Tim Russert asked Trump about his ties to organized crime. Trump cut him off to insist he had no such connections (despite his previous dealings with Sullivan, Shapiro, and others linked to the mob). Here’s the exchange:

Russert: Another book written suggested that because you are in the construction business, because you’re in the casino business, you’ve had relations with members of organized crime.

Trump: False. I mean—you know, the funny thing about the casino business, in particular in Atlantic City, as an example, you have to go through a very brilliant casino control system. Every check you write, every deal you make, even outside of Atlantic City. I’m talking if I build a building in New York I send in papers as to who’s building it, who’s the concrete people, etc., etc. Everything I do is under scrutiny. And one of the things different, I think, about me is that my life has been, Tim, a very, very open book. More so than virtually any politician that you interview on Sundays.

Russert pressed on:

Russert: But you’ve never had to meet with, to do business with any organized figure in order to build buildings or do…

Trump: I never have had to, and, to be honest with you, being a celebrity at a very high level is a good thing. Because they sort of—and they’re—I’m not saying the mob doesn’t exist. But they want to keep it low. They want to really keep it low. The last thing they want to do is meet with Donald Trump and have 500 paparazzi taking pictures. The answer is no. And I think, in that way—and I must tell you, I think, in that way, celebrity has been a positive for me.

Trump neglected to mention that he got his start in Atlantic City via a business deal with Shapiro and Sullivan. Nor did he refer to working with a cement company owned by Mafia chieftains and with a mob-linked union official when he was building Trump Tower. But eight months earlier, when he was not making moves to run for president, Trump did clearly state that he had in the past done business with organized crime figures. Talking to the Associated Press about his Miss USA pageant, Trump remarked, “Usually, I build buildings. I have to deal with the unions, the mob, some of the roughest men you’ve ever seen in your life. I come here and see these incredible beauties. It’s a lot of fun.”

So while discussing his hot-shot life, Trump practically boasted that as a builder he had to handle organized crime tough guys. As a possible presidential candidate, he claimed he had nothing to do with the mob. Only one of these statements can be true.

The time Trump said he couldn’t recall a mobbed-up criminal who worked for his company: Last December, Trump was asked by a reporter about a man named Felix Sater who had once been involved in a Mafia-linked stock swindle. “Felix Sater, boy, I have to even think about it,” Trump answered. “I’m not that familiar with him.” Not that familiar? Sater had worked with the Trump Organization, and Trump had been questioned about Sater in at least three depositions, including the 2007 deposition in Trump’s failed lawsuit against Timothy O’Brien.

Sater had not been mentioned in O’Brien’s book. But two days before the deposition, the New York Times revealed that Sater was doing business with Trump. The newspaper noted that Sater was something of a mysterious figure with a criminal past, and it reported:

A federal complaint brought against him in a 1998 money laundering and stock manipulation case was filed in secret and remains under seal. A subsequent indictment in March 2000 stemming from the same investigation described Mr. Sater as an “unindicted co-conspirator” and a key figure in a $40 million scheme involving 19 stockbrokers and organized crime figures from four Mafia families.

Sater, according to the Times, also “became embroiled in a plan to buy anti-aircraft missiles on the black market for the Central Intelligence Agency in either Russia or Afghanistan, depending on which of his former associates is telling the story.” The newspaper reported that he was now working for the Bayrock Group, “a partner in the Trump SoHo, a sleek, 46-story glass tower condominium hotel under construction on a newly fashionable section of Spring Street.”

It was certainly a story to receive much notice in New York: an arms-dealing, Mafia-connected man of international mystery in cahoots with the city’s most famous developer. Naturally, O’Brien’s lawyer asked Trump about him, and Trump said he had only had “limited” interactions with Sater. “Have you severed your ties with the Bayrock Group as a result of this?” Trump was asked. He replied, “Well, I’m looking into it, because I wasn’t happy with the story.” He added, “people that were trying to find things out about [Sater] have been unable to.”

Trump did not sever ties with Sater and the Bayrock Group. In fact, the following year Trump’s lawyers asked Sater to testify in Trump’s lawsuit against O’Brien. And two years after that, Sater officially joined the Trump Organization as a “senior advisor”: he was provided Trump Organization business cards and office space. Last year, a Trump lawyer said Sater had searched for high-end real estate deals for Trump’s company. Sater, who was born in the Soviet Union and later was a US government informant on organized crime and national security cases, has claimed that he met regularly with Trump and discussed deals in Los Angles, Ukraine, and China and that in 2006 he escorted Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump when the two Trump children visited Moscow.

Trump was asked about Sater in depositions related to other cases in 2011 and 2013. In the first, Trump acknowledged that he used to speak to Sater “for a period of time.” Yet in the second, he said, “if he were sitting in the room right now, I really wouldn’t know what he looked like.” Last year ABC News reported, “Trump and Sater can be seen together in photographs attending a Denver business conference in 2005, and the two men posed on stage together at the 2007 launch party for the Trump SoHo Hotel and Condominium project.”

Sater, who served prison time in the United States for a 1991 first-degree assault in which he stabbed a man in the face with a broken glass, was at first a PR headache for Trump but then became a senior adviser within Trump’s company. And Trump has had to answer questions about him in several serious legal proceedings. So how could he have said he was not familiar with him?

The time Trump denied knowing a mobster who threatened to castrate him: In 1991, the Philadelphia Inquirer asked Trump about Robert LiButti, a famous horse breeder and high-stakes gambler with ties to infamous Mafia boss John Gotti. At the time, New Jersey regulators were investigating allegations that the the Trump Plaza casino had repeatedly removed women and African Americans from craps tables after LiButti griped about their presence while playing. “I have heard he is a high roller, but if he was standing here in front of me, I wouldn’t know what he looked like,” Trump told the newspaper. And when Yahoo News in March asked Trump about this 1991 inquiry that resulted in a $200,000 fine, Trump responded, “During the years I very successfully ran the casino business, I knew many high rollers. I assume Mr. LiButti was one of them, but I don’t recognize the name.”

There’s reason to believe Trump was fibbing in both instances. As Yahoo News reported:

Edith Creamer, LiButti’s daughter, told Yahoo News in two recent telephone interviews that Trump’s account was false and that Trump and her father knew each other quite well. “He’s a liar,” said Creamer. “Of course he knew him. I flew in the [Trump] helicopter with [Trump’s then-wife] Ivana and the kids. My dad flew it up and down [to Atlantic City]. My 35th birthday party was at the Plaza and Donald was there. After the party, we went on his boat, his big yacht. I like Trump, but it pisses me off that he denies knowing my father. That hurts me.

The Yahoo News story by Michael Isikoff pointed out that a 1991 book written by John O’Donnell, the former president of the Trump Plaza casino, described a 1988 meeting between Trump and LiButti aboard Trump’s private helicopter. During this flight, according to O’Donnell, Trump discussed buying a racehorse for $500,000 from LiButti. Isikoff also obtained the full transcript of a wiretapped meeting in 1990 between LiButti and a top Trump executive in which LiButti made numerous references to his conversations with Trump and recounted an occasion when Trump personally handed him a check after he lost $350,000 at the craps table. (It was a supposedly a gift to keep LiButti happy so he would continue gambling at the Trump Plaza—and Trump has denied this occurred.) Speaking about Trump’s romantic life, then much in the news, LiButti said, “He’s lost that aggressiveness…Walks around like a f***ing banana. I can’t believe it’s Donald Trump. I don’t understand it.”

And there’s more. A new book by journalist David Cay Johnston reports that Trump took a fancy to LiButti’s daughter and that when the mob-connected gambler learned about this he confronted the casino mogul and said, “Donald, I’ll fucking pull your balls from your legs.”

Trump, according to Johnston, “lavished gifts on [Robert] LiButti, was generous with his time, and, less graciously, repeatedly tried to seduce the gambler’s grown daughter.” And for Edith LiButti’s 35th birthday, the book says, Trump offered her a rather generous present: a cream-colored Mercedes-Benz convertible. Trump’s casino, Johnston adds, was hit with a $450,000 fine for giving LiButti as gifts nine ultraluxury cars—three Ferraris, three Rolls-Royces, two Bentleys, and a Mercedes—that were quickly converted into cash.

Would a casino owner and playboy really not recognize a high-stakes player who lost over $11 million at his tables, who received exorbitant gifts as comps, and who once threatened him with castration? That’s not a safe bet. Consider this: In March, Trump insisted to Yahoo News that he didn’t know LiButti. A few weeks ago, he told the Wall Street Journal: “LiButti was a high-roller in Atlantic City. I found him to be a nice guy. But I had nothing to do with him.” In one instance, he claimed he didn’t know the man; in the other, he said he considered him a fine fellow. Once again, both remarks cannot be true.

“If people were like me, there would be no mob, because I don’t play that game.” That’s what Trump told the Wall Street Journal recently, when the newspaper was examining his mob links. But that story noted that Trump in the late 1970s and early 1980s forged an important relationship with John Cody, a local union leader who controlled cement truck drivers and who was close to Mafia bosses Carlo Gambino and Paul Castellano. Cody’s son Michael told the Journal that Trump received preferential treatment from his father and obtained cement for Trump Tower even when Cody called a strike. (In a 1992 book, reporter Wayne Barrett noted that a female friend of John Cody, who had no visible means of support, ended up owning three apartments in Trump Tower. Cody occasionally stayed at these apartments and invested $500,000 in the units.) And Johnston recently pointed out in Politico that when Trump was building Trump Tower, he used concrete (which he bought at inflated prices) from a firm owned through fronts by Castellano and another Mafia chieftain named Anthony “Fat Tony” Salerno. (Castellano and Salerno each were clients of Roy Cohn when he was working for Trump.)

Trump told the Journal that he is “the cleanest guy there is.” But that was just another lie. How clean is it to lie under oath about interacting with mob-linked thugs? No other presidential candidate has had such an extensive and publicly known record of business deals with mob associates—and of making false and contradictory statements to keep these dirty connections from becoming a major campaign controversy. ... a-figures/

The 19 Women Who Accused President Trump of Sexual Misconduct
The "Weinstein effect" continues to roil the nation’s power centers. But the allegations against the president have largely stayed in the background.

Matt FordDec 7, 2017

Summer Zervos, a former contestant on The Apprentice, leaves court after a hearing in her defamation case against President Trump on December 5.Andrew Kelly / Reuters

It’s been two months since the reckoning began. In early October, The New York Times and The New Yorker first published the alarming accounts of women who said they’d been assaulted by Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein. Rare is the day since then that women, and some men, haven’t come forward with accounts of sexual misconduct from famous and not-so-famous men alike.

Lurking in the background of the roiling debate about harassment and assault in American society are the allegations made against President Trump by at least 19 women, many of whom came forward after the release of the Access Hollywood tape in October 2016. Trump vociferously denies any wrongdoing. “Is the official White House position that all of these women are lying?” a reporter asked Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, in late October. “Yeah, we’ve been clear on that from the beginning, and the president’s spoken on it,” Sanders replied.

Some of the women’s stories date back to the 1980s when Trump’s personal relationships were fixtures of the New York City tabloids; others begin after he returned to the public eye with his NBC series The Apprentice. Their accounts describe a wide range of alleged behavior, including lewd remarks, overt harassment, groping, and sexual assault. One woman, Summer Zervos, is currently suing the president for defamation after he repeatedly called her and the others liars. What follows are details from each accuser—listed alphabetically—and the president’s corresponding defense.

Kristin Anderson

Year: Early 1990s
Allegation: Anderson told The Washington Post in October 2016 that she encountered Trump at an unnamed Manhattan nightspot when he was seated next to her on a red velvet couch. She said that Trump slid his fingers up her skirt and touched her through her underwear. The newspaper quoted friends of Anderson who said she gave them the same account shortly thereafter and in the years that followed.
Response: “Mr. Trump strongly denies this phony allegation by someone looking to get some free publicity,” Hope Hicks, a Trump campaign spokeswoman and the current White House communications director, told the Post. “It is totally ridiculous.”
Status: Anderson has not spoken to news outlets since the election.
Mariah Billado

Year: 1997
Allegation: Billado, a Miss Teen USA contestant representing Vermont, was one of five former participants in the beauty pageant who told BuzzFeed News in October 2016 that Trump had walked in on her and other contestants while they were changing. “I remember putting on my dress really quick because I was like, ‘Oh my god, there’s a man in here,’” she told the news outlet. Billado said Trump responded by telling them not to worry and that he’d seen it all before.
Response: The Trump campaign denied allegations from Billado and other former pageant contestants. “These accusations have no merit and have already been disproven by many other individuals who were present,” the campaign said in a statement. “When you see questionable attacks like this magically put out there in the final month of a presidential campaign, you have to ask yourself what the political motivations are and why the media is pushing it.”
Status: Billado has not spoken to news outlets since the election.
Lisa Boyne

Year: 1996
Allegation: Boyne told HuffPost in October 2016 that she met Trump and modeling agent John Casablancas at a restaurant in Lower Manhattan in 1996 while she worked at a think tank in the city. She described a dinner in which the women sitting in a circular booth could only leave if they walked across the table. According to Boyne, Trump used the opportunity to look up their skirts and comment on their underwear and genitals. She told the news outlet that Trump did not make any advances toward her, but asked for her input on which of the other women he should sleep with.
Response: “Mr. Trump never heard of this woman and would never do that,” Hicks told HuffPost in a statement.
Status: Boyne has not spoken to news outlets since the election.
Rachel Crooks

Year: 2005
Allegation: Crooks told The New York Times in October 2016 that she encountered Trump outside the elevator in Trump Tower in Manhattan, where she worked for a real-estate-investment company. She said Trump shook her hand, wouldn’t let go, and then pulled her in for a kiss on the cheeks and the mouth. “I was so upset that he thought I was so insignificant that he could do that,” she said.
Response: “None of this ever took place,” Trump told the Times in a phone interview for the article, which also included a separate account by a woman named Jessica Leeds. The newspaper characterized his response as “highly agitated” and noted that he called one of the reporters asking him questions “a disgusting human being.”
Status: Crooks told the Times in November that she wondered how the country could forget about the women who accused Trump of misconduct. In a CNN interview in early December, Crooks also said she wasn’t surprised Trump had reportedly begun describing the 2005 Access Hollywood tape as fake because she considered the president a “pathological liar.”
Tasha Dixon

Year: 2001
Allegation: Dixon told CBS News’s Los Angeles affiliate in October 2016 that she met Trump while representing Arizona during the 2001 Miss USA pageant. Like other participants in competitions run by the Miss Universe Organization, which Trump bought in 1996, Dixon said Trump would visit the women’s dressing room while the contestants were changing. “He just came strolling right in,” she told the network. “There was no second to put a robe on or any sort of clothing or anything. Some girls were topless. Other girls were naked.”
Response: The Trump campaign denied allegations made by Dixon and other former pageant contestants. “These accusations have no merit and have already been disproven by many other individuals who were present,” the campaign said in a statement. “When you see questionable attacks like this magically put out there in the final month of a presidential campaign, you have to ask yourself what the political motivations are and why the media is pushing it.”
Status: Dixon has not spoken to news outlets since the election.
Jessica Drake

Year: 2006
Allegation: During a press conference with lawyer Gloria Allred in October 2016, Drake, a former adult-film actress and director, described meeting Trump during a 2006 golf tournament at Lake Tahoe, Nevada. She said two women were with her, and that Trump “grabbed each of us tightly in a hug and kissed each one of us without asking permission.” Drake told reporters that Trump later called her and asked her to accompany him to dinner and a party. When she declined, she said Trump offered her $10,000 if she agreed to his offer. Allred showed reporters at the press conference a photograph of Trump and Drake together.
Response: The Trump campaign denied Drake’s account and accused Hillary Clinton of orchestrating the allegation. “This story is totally false and ridiculous. The picture is one of thousands taken out of respect for people asking to have their picture taken with Mr. Trump,” the campaign said in a statement. “Mr. Trump does not know this person, does not remember this person, and would have no interest in ever knowing her.”
Status: Drake spoke at a press conference during the Women’s March on Washington in January alongside three other women who accused Trump of sexual misconduct. “Like many, I am horrified by the potential upcoming administration and fear the consequences it will have,” she told reporters.
Jill Harth

Year: 1992-1993
Allegation: Harth and George Houraney, her romantic and business partner at the time, first met Trump in 1992 regarding a business proposal. She told The Guardian in July 2016 that Trump’s unwanted advances began at dinner that night when he tried to grope her under the table. According to Harth, those advances continued at a January 1993 business meeting at Mar-a-Lago, the president’s estate in Florida. She said Trump cornered her in his daughter’s bedroom during a tour of the property. “He pushed me up against the wall, and had his hands all over me and tried to get up my dress again,” Harth told the newspaper. Houraney said he did not witness the two incidents but believes Harth’s account of them. She shared her account during a deposition in 1996 as part of a lawsuit against Trump claiming that he failed to hold up his end of a business deal. (Trump settled out of court for an unknown sum.)
Response: Michael Cohen, the Trump Organization lawyer, denied Harth’s allegations in a statement to The Guardian. “It is disheartening that one has to dignify a response to the below absurd query,” he said via email. “Mr. Trump denies each and every statement made by Ms. Harth as these 24-year-old allegations lack any merit or veracity.”
Status: Harth continued to speak out against the president after the election. In October, she tweeted, “My pain is everyday with bastard Trump as President. No one gets it unless it happens to them. NO one!”
Cathy Heller

Year: 1997
Allegation: Heller told The Guardian in October 2016 that she met Trump during a Mother’s Day brunch held at Mar-a-Lago, where she was dining with her husband, her children, and her in-laws. According to her, Trump was greeting attendees table by table. When he was introduced to her, Heller said Trump forcibly kissed her. “He took my hand, and grabbed me, and went for the lips,” she told the newspaper, adding that she felt “angry and shaken.” The Guardian interviewed an unidentified relative who witnessed most of the encounter, as well as friends who said she told them about it in the years afterward.
Response: “There is no way that something like this would have happened in a public place on Mother’s Day at Mr. Trump’s resort,” Jason Miller, a Trump campaign spokesman, told The Guardian. “It would have been the talk of Palm Beach for the past two decades.”
Status: Heller told The Guardian in October that sharing her story the previous year had been difficult, but that she received “tremendous support” from friends and family. She added that she was glad so many women had stepped forward after the Weinstein allegations were made public. “It’s not a Democrat or Republican thing. It’s men in power,” Heller told the newspaper.
Samantha Holvey

Year: 2006
Allegation: Holvey, who represented North Carolina at the 2006 Miss USA pageant, told CNN in October 2016 that Trump personally inspected her and the other contestants before the competition. “He would step in front of each girl and look you over from head to toe like we were just meat, we were just sexual objects, that we were not people,” she said in the interview. “You know when a gross guy at the bar is checking you out? It’s that feeling.” Holvey said that she was “disgusted” by his behavior and “had no desire to win when I understood what it was really all about.”
Response: CNN said that messages left with the Trump campaign about Holvey’s account “were not returned.” Trump broadly denied the wave of sexual-misconduct allegations in October 2016 and accused the women who made them of lying.
Status: Holvey has not spoken to media outlets about her account since the election.
Ninni Laaksonen

Year: 2006
Allegation: Laaksonen, a model and former Miss Finland, told Finnish newspaper Ilta-Sanomat in October 2016 that Trump groped her backstage at the Late Show with David Letterman in 2006. “Trump stood right next to me and suddenly he squeezed my butt,” she told the newspaper, according to a translation by The Telegraph. “He really grabbed my butt. I don’t think anybody saw it, but I flinched and thought, ‘What is happening?’”
Response: Neither Ilta-Sanomat nor The Telegraph quoted a specific response from Trump or his campaign, but Trump broadly denied the wave of sexual-misconduct allegations in October 2016 and accused the women who made them of lying.
Status: Laaksonen does not appear to have spoken to media outlets about her account since the election.
Jessica Leeds

Year: 1980s
Allegation: Leeds told The New York Times in October 2016 that she sat next to Trump in a first-class cabin on a flight in the 1980s. Almost an hour into the flight, he lifted the armrest and “grabbed her breasts and tried to put his hand up her skirt,” she told the newspaper. “He was an octopus,” she added. “His hands were everywhere.”
Response: “None of this ever took place,” Trump told the Times in a phone interview for the article, which also included a separate account by Rachel Crooks. The newspaper characterized his response as “highly agitated” and noted that he called one of the reporters “a disgusting human being.”
Status: As the “Weinstein effect” gained momentum this fall, Leeds spoke to The Washington Post in October about her experiences since the election. “It is hard to reconcile that Harvey Weinstein could be brought down with this, and [President] Trump just continues to be the Teflon Don,” she told the newspaper.
Melinda McGillivray

Year: 2003
Allegation: McGillivray told the Palm Beach Post in October 2016 that she met Trump at Mar-a-Lago during a Ray Charles concert in 2003. Ken Davidoff, a society photographer who often held photo shoots at the resort and was a friend of McGillivray, invited her to assist him. McGillivray told the newspaper that Trump clandestinely groped her while they and others were meeting Charles after his performance. The Post also spoke with Davidoff, who said that McGillivray came up to him shortly after the meeting and told him, “Donald just grabbed my ass.”
Response: The Post said it reached out to the Trump campaign for comment but did not cite a response. Trump broadly denied the wave of sexual-misconduct allegations in October 2016 and accused the women who made them of lying.
Status: McGillivray expressed anger toward Trump when she spoke to The Washington Post in October 2017 about the allegations. “What pisses me off is that the guy is president,” she told the newspaper. “It’s that simple.”
Cassandra Searles

Year: 2013
Allegation: Searles met Trump when she represented the state of Washington during the 2013 Miss USA pageant. In a Facebook post written in June 2016, Searles said “this one guy treated us like cattle” during the stage introductions and “proceeded to have us lined up so he could get a closer look at his property.” She didn’t name Trump specifically, but she included a photo of him in the post and noted the “guy” was running for president. “He probably doesn’t want me telling the story about that time he continually grabbed my ass and invited me to his hotel room,” Searles added in a comment on the post.
Response: Trump did not specifically respond to Searles’ account when it received widespread media attention in October 2016. He broadly denied the wave of sexual-misconduct allegations that month and accused the women who made them of lying.
Status: Searles has not spoken to media outlets about her account since the election.
Natasha Stoynoff

Year: 2005
Allegation: Stoynoff, a journalist at People magazine, wrote in October 2016 about her 2005 encounter with Trump at Mar-a-Lago. She met with Trump and his wife Melania for a story about their one-year wedding anniversary. While giving her a tour of the mansion, Trump cornered her in a room and began forcibly kissing her, Stoynoff said. “I turned around, and within seconds he was pushing me against the wall and forcing his tongue down my throat,” she wrote. According to her, Trump did not relent until a butler arrived and informed him that Melania was on her way for their interview. Stoynoff said Trump resumed his advances after the interview, telling her that they would have an affair and mentioning an infamous tabloid cover about his purported sexual prowess. In a separate article, People cited six people who corroborated Stoynoff’s account.
Response: Trump denied the allegations in a message on Twitter. “Why didn’t the writer of the twelve year old article in People Magazine mention the ‘incident’ in her story. Because it did not happen!” he wrote. Anthony Senecal, Trump’s longtime butler at Mar-a-Lago, also denied the encounter had taken place.
Status: Stoynoff revisited the incident in an October 2017 op-ed in USA Today about sexual misconduct. In the piece, she said an “Oscar-nominated actor” had assaulted her when she tried to interview him for her college newspaper. Stoynoff declined to name the actor, saying “this particular creep isn’t running for president and no longer has power in Hollywood.” But she said that episode shaped why she didn’t immediately go public with her allegations about Trump. “Like many women, my life has been riddled with experiences of sexual misconduct by teachers, doctors, bosses, and more,” she wrote. “Sadly, many women begin to feel this behavior from men is a given, and so we go on, dying a little inside each time it happens.”
Bridget Sullivan

Year: 2000
Allegation: Sullivan told BuzzFeed News in May 2016 that she met Trump in 2000 while she was representing New Hampshire in that year’s Miss Teen USA pageant. According to Sullivan, Trump would “hug you just a little low on your back” and give women “a squeeze like a creepy uncle would.” She also said Trump would walk through the young women’s dressing rooms while they were naked and changing.
Response: Hicks told BuzzFeed that Sullivan’s story and similar ones shared by some contestants were “totally false.”
Status: Sullivan has not spoken to news outlets since the election.
Temple Taggart

Year: 1997
Allegation: Taggart told The New York Times in May 2016 about two separate encounters. She first met the president in 1997 while representing Utah in that year’s Miss USA pageant. When she was introduced to him, Taggart said, Trump “kissed me directly on the lips.” She told the newspaper that Trump repeated his actions during a subsequent meeting at Trump Tower in Manhattan, which she attended because of his offers to help her obtain modeling contracts.
Response: Trump told the Times in an interview that he “would never do that.” When NBC News revisited Taggart’s story after the Access Hollywood tape became public in October 2016, he issued a more forceful denial. “I don’t even know who she is,” Trump told the network. “She claims this took place in a public area. I never kissed her. I emphatically deny this ridiculous claim.”
Status: Taggart told the Times in November 2017 that she and other women who accused Trump of misconduct had spent the year since his election angry about what happened and fearful of potential retaliation by the president.
Ivana Trump

Year: 1989
Allegation: The president’s first wife described a 1989 sexual encounter she had with him as “rape” in a deposition during their divorce proceedings in 1990. Her account did not become public until 1993, when it was recounted in a book about the Trumps by author Harry Hart III. Just before the book was published, Ivana said in a statement that her use of the word “rape” should not be “interpreted in a literal or criminal sense” by readers. “On one occasion during 1989, Mr. Trump and I had marital relations in which he behaved very differently toward me than he had during our marriage,” Ivana said in the statement, which, according to The Daily Beast, was released by her ex-husband and his legal team. “As a woman, I felt violated, as the love and tenderness, which he normally exhibited towards me, was absent.”
Response: Michael Cohen, the Trump Organization’s legal counsel, downplayed the incident in a 2015 interview with The Daily Beast. “You’re talking about the frontrunner for the GOP, presidential candidate, as well as a private individual who never raped anybody,” he told the outlet. (Cohen received widespread criticism for falsely stating during the same interview that a spouse cannot be raped, for which he later apologized.)
Status: After the incident resurfaced in 2015 during Trump’s presidential run, Ivana described her claim from the deposition as “totally without merit” in a statement. “I have nothing but fondness for Donald and wish him the best of luck on his campaign,” she added. “Incidentally, I think he would make an incredible president.”
Karena Virginia

Year: 1998
Allegation: Virginia told The Washington Post in October 2016 that Trump put his arm around her and touched her breast at the U.S. Open tennis tournament in 1998. She said she encountered Trump while waiting alone for a car outside the tournament building. According to her, Trump also made comments about her body to a group of nearby men before getting in a car and leaving.
Response: The Trump campaign denied Virginia’s account of events. “Voters are tired of these circuslike antics and reject these fictional stories and the clear efforts to benefit Hillary Clinton,” Jessica Ditto, a Trump campaign spokeswoman, told the Post.
Status: Virginia has not spoken to news outlets since the election.
Summer Zervos

Year: 2007
Allegation: Zervos first met Trump in 2005 when she was a contestant on the fifth season of NBC’s The Apprentice. In an October 2016 press conference, Zervos told reporters that she met Trump for dinner in 2007 at the Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles to discuss job opportunities. She said Trump greeted her with an open-mouth kiss when she arrived at his room. “He then grabbed my shoulder and began kissing me again very aggressively and placed his hand on my breast,” she told reporters. “I pulled back and walked to another part of the room. He then walked up, grabbed my hand, and pulled me into the bedroom. I walked out.” Zervos said Trump then embraced her, urged her to join him on the bed to watch television, and thrust himself upon her before she left.
Response: Trump denied Zervos’s account. “I vaguely remember Ms. Zervos as one of the many contestants on The Apprentice over the years,” he said in a statement. “To be clear, I never met her at a hotel or greeted her inappropriately a decade ago. That is not who I am as a person, and it is not how I’ve conducted my life. In fact, Ms. Zervos continued to contact me for help, emailing my office on April 14 of this year asking that I visit her restaurant in California.” At a campaign rally in Pennsylvania a few weeks later, Trump emphatically denied any wrongdoing and repeatedly accused Zervos and the other women of lying about their alleged encounters with him.
Status: Zervos filed a defamation lawsuit against Trump in New York in January, accusing him of using his immense public platform “to make false factual statements to denigrate and verbally attack Ms. Zervos and the other women” who came forward. A New York judge is currently weighing arguments from both parties on whether the case should proceed to trial. If Zervos prevails, Trump could be compelled to testify about the allegations before a jury. ... mp/547724/

Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Mon Jul 29, 2019 7:26 am

Rolf Mowatt-Larssen

Follow Follow @AmericanMystic
Rolf Mowatt-Larssen Retweeted Renato Mariotti
Trump is consolidating his personal control over the intelligence community. Between loyalists Barr and Radcliffe, and pliant CIA and FBI directors, Trump is close to neutralizing intelligence and law enforcement as spoilers in his bid to amass unprecedented executive power.

Renato Mariotti

Verified account

Follow Follow @renato_mariotti
Renato Mariotti Retweeted Donald J. Trump
Radcliffe harshly questioned Mueller during the recent hearing, falsely suggesting that he failed to comply with the Special Counsel regulations and cutting Mueller off when he tried to explain himself.
Renato Mariotti added,

Before becoming DNI, Jim Clapper had worked in U.S. intelligence for nearly fifty years and personally headed two of the nation's 17 intel agencies. By comparison, John Ratcliffe was the mayor of Heath, Texas, pop., 8000.

Trump had attacked Rep Elijah Cummings, calling Mr Cummings' mostly-black Baltimore district a "disgusting, rat and rodent-infested mess".

trump will not stop until there are riots in the is what he wants
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:14 pm

A New Study Found that 15,000 People Died Because Their State Didn’t Expand Medicaid

The study found serious consequences for states that refused to comply with Obamacare.

Approximately 15,600 people died between 2014 and 2017 as a result of their states refusing to expand Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act, according to a new working paper by the National Bureau of Economic Research.

The ACA promised to expand Medicaid coverage to individuals whose income was at or below 138 percent of the federal poverty level, but a 2012 Supreme Court ruling left it up to states to decide whether to expand coverage. Today, 14 states have not adopted Medicaid expansion, and three others have adopted it but not yet implemented it.

“There’s some states that will abandon some of their neediest citizens, and some of the neediest citizens will have horrible outcomes.”
The paper studied mortality rates in expansion states and in non-expansion states before and after the increased Medicaid coverage was implemented. It found that, in states that had expanded Medicaid, 4,800 fewer Medicaid-eligible individuals between the ages of 55 and 64 died per year than in non-expansion states.

“Since there are about 3.7 million individuals who meet our sample criteria living in expansion states, our results indicate that approximately 4,800 fewer deaths occurred per year among this population, or roughly 19,200 fewer deaths over the first four years alone,” the researchers wrote. “Or, put differently, as there are approximately 3 million individuals meeting this sample criteria in non-expansion states, failure to expand in these states likely resulted in 15,600 additional deaths over this four year period that could have been avoided if the states had opted to expand coverage.”

Harold Pollack, a health policy expert at the University of Chicago, said that NBER’s finding seemed plausible and that the number of people affected could actually be greater.

“States’ refusal to accept Medicaid is really a hideous policy decision that is largely motivated by partisan spite,” he said. “There’s some states that will abandon some of their neediest citizens, and some of the neediest citizens will have horrible outcomes.”

Several Republican governors have refused to expand Medicaid in their states, even though the federal government finances most of the costs of expansion, likely because the legislation is associated with Barack Obama’s presidency. Still, Medicaid expansion polls well even in red states, and has been favored by voters in states with Republican governors, such as Utah.

The new study provides a formidable justification for Medicaid expansion, as it has been shown to save lives. Medicaid expansion was particularly effective in reducing preventable deaths related to conditions such as cardiovascular disease, the study found.

Pollack pointed out that Medicaid still has room to improve in several areas, including its payments to medical providers, coverage for mental illness, and treatment of the opioid epidemic. “If we were using Medicaid in the most powerful way as a pubic health intervention, the states that have expanded Medicaid would have found more benefits that they seem to be finding,” he said. “I would like to see us do a better job of operating Medicaid in the states that are really trying to do it right.” ... -medicaid/

Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Mon Aug 05, 2019 6:05 am

Trump Administration Is 'Facilitating and Enabling' Youth to Commit 'Terrorism,' Ex-FBI Official Says After El Paso Shooting
On 8/3/19 at 10:32 PM EDT
Hours after the mass shooting in El Paso on Saturday, which left 20 dead and at least 26 others injured, former FBI assistant director Frank Figliuzzi accused President Donald Trump and his administration of "facilitating and enabling" American youth to commit acts of domestic "terrorism" by failing to explicitly condemn hate against immigrants.

A gunman reportedly opened fire at a Walmart this morning near the Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, Texas, causing multiple fatalities. Later, 21-year-old Patrick Crusius was identified by several news outlets as the shooter after El Paso police spokesperson Sgt. Robert Gomez said the suspect in custody was a white male in his 20s.

Authorities told the Washington Post that they are currently investigating a manifesto, allegedly written by Crusius but not confirmed to be linked to him, that includes firm anti-immigration sentiments and sympathy for the Christchurch shooter, an Australian gunman involved in attacks on New Zealand mosques that left 49 dead earlier this year.

Responding to the incident on MSNBC on Saturday, Figliuzzi called the shooting "an act of terrorism."

"As details emerge, this manifesto, this screed, whatever you want to call it, you're going to be increasingly be convinced that today's shooting is actually an act of terrorism." the former FBI official said. "I say that because of the similarities between what we've seen with Islamic violent extremism and online radicalization and what we're seeing now in this hate-filled movement in the United States."

"We have a hate problem. Yes, we have a gun problem. Yes, we have a violence problem," Figliuzzi continued, "but we have a developing hate problem and it is race-based and if as soon as they confirm that this posting is indeed the shooter's posting, we should feel free to call what it it is and that is terrorism."

"You need legislation but you also need intervention," he added.

Figliuzzi then argued that Trump and his administration "needs to come out and intervene," otherwise he's "facilitating and enabling" the hate problem that gives rise to such attacks.

"Let's understand something, this administration that we're in needs to come out and intervene," Figliuzzi said. "What do I mean by that? If you're on the Islamic extremism side, you've got that cleric radicalizing that young person online."

"He's the father figure, he's giving the license, he's facilitating and enabling. What we need is the similar figure — the President — to come out immediately, once this is confirmed, and say, 'I stand for something other than hate, I rebuke all the hatred going on here,'" he continued. "Until we see the figure do that, that's giving the license, we'll continue to have this hate problem."

"His writing is filled with hatred," Figliuzzi noted, referring to the manifesto, "he calls Mexicans and others invaders, he thinks they are taking jobs from people. He thinks it's up to him to take action. We need to understand that."

"About half the FBI's terrorism cases right now, as we speak, are actually this stuff, the domestic stuff," he added. "That is extremely disturbing."

A Twitter account that is suspected to belong to Crusius liked an image of guns arranged to spell out "Trump." The account and various other fake accounts purporting to belong to the suspect were suspended by the social media platform on Saturday.

Adam Best

Not going to name who El Paso officials are saying the shooter is by name, because screw giving that monster any publicity, but a tweet featuring this disturbing image is one of the few things he liked from what appears to be his Twitter profile.
View image on Twitter
3:59 PM - Aug 3, 2019
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Although most major American news outlets have identified the suspect by his name, El Paso Police Chief Greg Allen refused to officially confirm his identity when asked by reporters at a press conference late Saturday afternoon. "This person is still entitled to fair process," he said, "we don't want to make any statements now" to impede the investigation.

Frank Figliuzzi
After the El Paso shooting on Saturday, former FBI assistant director Frank Figliuzzi accused President Donald Trump and his administration of "facilitating and enabling" American youth to commit domestic "terrorism" by not condemning hate during an appearance on MSNBC. ... ys-1452473
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby RocketMan » Mon Aug 05, 2019 6:10 am

Yeah, so why did Pelosi whip the Democrats into approving a Trump-endorsed budget bill that Trump couldn't even get the majority of the Republicans to agree to?
-I don't like hoodlums.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Mon Aug 05, 2019 6:29 am

Ted Rall, cartoon, Donald Trump and Saudi Arabia, Sitting in a Tree

Trump and Saudi Arabia: A Bloody Alliance

Donald Trump and Saudi Arabia, Sitting in a Tree. Photo credit: Ted Rall for WhoWhatWhy
Reading Time: 1 minute
Trying to pander to African Americans, President Donald Trump recently criticized Sweden for not releasing rapper A$AP Rocky, who has been charged with assault. It’s curious that he never called out Saudi Arabia for torturing and killing Washington Post columnist Jamal Kashoggi.

Trump also vetoed legislation preventing certain weapons to be sold to the Saudis. All of this is further proof that Trump is much more comfortable with repressive regimes than the rule of law. ... -alliance/

Alt-Right Movement Presents Its Vision for an All-White Society With Trump Paving the Way
In a bizarre press conference, these white nationalists hailed the GOP nominee’s style.

Evan Vucci/AP
The alt-right movement, reveling in the spotlight cast upon it by the Donald Trump campaign, made its debut to the mainstream media on Friday with a press conference to lay out its goal of an all-white society and its love for Trump.

The once-fringe movement has suddenly found a prominent place in the Trump campaign and among its most loyal backers. Stephen Bannon, the Trump campaign CEO, was until recently the head of the conservative website Breitbart News, which he called “the platform for the alt-right.” But the movement’s moment in the limelight got off to a rough start.

Originally set to be held at the National Press Club, Friday’s event was canceled earlier in the week when the venue scuttled it amid security concerns. Not to be deterred, the alt-right leaders came up with a new plan: a secret location.

Reporters covering the event were instructed to go to the entrance of the Old Ebbitt Grill, near the White House. There, they would encounter a man in a charcoal suit and brown tie who would reveal the new location of the conference. Shortly after 1 p.m., I approached the restaurant and saw the man in the gray suit standing outside. He instructed me to round the corner to the Willard Hotel and make my way downstairs to the Peacock Lounge. Soon after I arrived, Richard Spencer, the man who coined the term “alt-right,” kicked off the event.

“I’m sorry we had to put you through this wild goose chase,” said Spencer, who runs a white nationalist group called the National Policy Institute. Spencer noted that the National Press Club has previously held three NPI events. “We are, from what we can tell, the first guest that have been censored for what is clearly ideological reasons.”

Spencer invited two prominent members of the movement to join him. One was Peter Brimelow, the founder of the website, which the Southern Poverty Law Center describes as an “immigrant-bashing hate site that regularly publishes works by white supremacists, anti-Semites, and others on the radical right.” (Brimelow freely admitted during the event that he publishes white nationalists.) The other was Jared Taylor, a self-described “race realist” who explained why the white race is superior to all others (except for East Asians, he said, who are superior to whites). The audience was a mix of reporters and what appeared to be alt-right members and fans.

Spencer had fashioned a logo for the occasion, consisting of a golden triangular letter A followed by an R made of two stacked triangles. He said it had a young, futuristic look, in contrast to the flags and eagles that adorn the logos of the past. So what did these futuristic triangles represent? Spencer proposed the following “mantra” for his movement: “Race is real, race matters, and race is the foundation of identity.” The ultimate ideal is that the world be divided into ethno-states so that white people could have a “homeland.”

Spencer’s ideas about race are intertwined with his support for Trump. Spencer explained that he likes Trump’s immigration policy, which not only calls for mass deportation of undocumented immigrants but also reduces legal immigration into the country. (Spencer’s ideal policy would also favor immigrants from Europe.) But as Spencer put it, it’s Trump’s more intangible qualities that make him a hero of the alt-right. To Spencer, Trump’s brash style suggests a white savoir, unwilling to be bullied by the politically correct crowd.

“I don’t think our support of Trump is really about policy at the end of the day,” Spencer said. “I think it’s really about Trump’s style, the fact that he doesn’t back down, the fact that he’s willing to confront his enemies…You look at that and you think, ‘This is what a leader looks like.'”

Spencer continued, “It really is about him and it’s about, in a way, projecting onto him our hopes and dreams. There’s something called ‘meme magic,’* and that is a self-fulfilling prophecy…We want to make Trump; we want to imagine him in our image. And that is maybe—you can see that in a meme of Trump as a Napoleon or Trump as some figure out of the Dune novels in an arcade of the future in a robotic suit of armor fighting enemies. All of that stuff is silly, all of that stuff is ridiculous, but it actually gets at something real and that is that we want something more, we want something heroic, we want something that is not defined by liberalism or individual rights or bourgeois norms. We want something that is truly European and truly heroic.”

For this description, Spencer was greeted with much applause by his fans in the room. He elaborated that rather than a multicultural America, his ideal is a white empire. He described his “dream…ethno-state” as “a homeland for all Europeans,” which would take an “imperial form.”

“It’s very similar to the idea of Zionism for Jews in the 19th century,” he said. “It’s actually very similar to the ideal of communism for the left in the 19th century. It’s not here, it’s in the future, we should dream about it.”

What would this utopia look like? Spencer said it’s too far off to get into specifics. But he and Taylor, whose role at Friday’s event was to give academic assurances that the races of the world are not equal, disagreed on whether Jews would be welcomed into the white utopia homeland. Spencer took the position that they were not “European” and therefore would take their place in their own ethno-state. Taylor countered, “I don’t think that if a Jewish person identifies with the West and with Europe than that’s something that we should deny.” As Spencer acknowledged, the alt-right has yet to sort out these mere details.

But Spencer did offer up a vision of an alt-right society. “If the alt-right were in power, we would all have arrived here via magnetic levitation trains,” he said. “We would have passed by great forests and beautiful images of blond women in a wheat field with their hands, running them through the wheat.” The audience tittered. “It would be a wonderful sight.” ... eam-debut/
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby RocketMan » Mon Aug 05, 2019 7:36 am

Again, why don't Democrats then offer any effective "Resistance" to him?
-I don't like hoodlums.
-That's just a word, Marlowe. We have that kind of world. Two wars gave it to us and we are going to keep it.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Mon Aug 05, 2019 7:36 am

Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby RocketMan » Mon Aug 05, 2019 7:44 am

I said "effective".

You'll see, he will not be impeached and he will receive a second term, if his health issues don't come in the way.
-I don't like hoodlums.
-That's just a word, Marlowe. We have that kind of world. Two wars gave it to us and we are going to keep it.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Mon Aug 05, 2019 7:45 am

his impeachment has already begun
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby RocketMan » Mon Aug 05, 2019 7:45 am

I will quote you on that, you can be sure of that.
-I don't like hoodlums.
-That's just a word, Marlowe. We have that kind of world. Two wars gave it to us and we are going to keep it.
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Re: TRUMP is seriously dangerous

Postby seemslikeadream » Mon Aug 05, 2019 7:49 am

it is a fact

Nadler makes an impeachment inquiry

The impeachment process has begun

July 26 2019

I posted it on July 26 2019

AGAIN the process is

impeachment in the Congress..... conviction in the Senate that's the way it works

According to Facebook's ad archive, Trump has run around 2,200 FB ads since May 2018 mentioning the word "invasion." Scrolling through, all of them seem to be about immigration.
Image ... r%5Eauthor

Replying to @realDonaldTrump
You laughed when MAGA chanted “Send Her Back” and “Lock Her Up” about Americans. You called Nazis fine people. You accused 5 black youths of a crime they didn’t commit. You wanted to ban Muslims from the US & called Mexicans “Bad Hombres”.

It’s not the media.

It’s you, asshole.
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
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Don’t forget that.
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