September 11, 2017

Posted by orrinj at 7:39 PM


Data on Out-of-State IDs Fuels Cries of 'Fraud' in 2016 Election (CASEY MCDERMOTT • SEP 7, 2017, NHPR)

[K]ansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach penned a Breitbart column pointing to the data as evidence that "a pivotal, close election [the U.S. Senate Race between Kelly Ayotte and Maggie Hassan] was likely changed through voter fraud." Kobach is co-chair of the Trump administration's Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, which is meeting in New Hampshire next week and of which New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner is a member.

Gardner, in an interview Thursday evening, said he hadn't yet read Kobach's column. But, Gardner said, "I'll certainly talk to him about it next week."

When asked if he had any reason to doubt the legitimacy of last year's election outcome, Gardner replied: "No."

"That's why I want to get the facts out there," Gardner added, referring to his participation on the Trump voting commission. "Not just good facts. I want all the facts."

The report released Thursday doesn't say where the people who used out-of-state IDs and didn't follow up with in-state licenses or vehicle registrations voted.

Earlier this year, using data provided at the time by the Secretary of State's office, NHPR found that out-of-state IDs were mostly used in areas surrounding college campuses. New Hampshire law allows out-of-state college students to vote in-state, as long as they meet all other eligibility requirements.

Posted by orrinj at 7:37 PM


GM boasts "the world's first mass-producible driverless car" (Co-Exist, 9/11/17)

General Motors has unveiled the third version of its self-driving car-the first such car "that meets the redundancy and safety requirements we believe are necessary to operate without a driver," Kyle Vogt, CEO of the General Motors-owned self-driving car startup Cruise, wrote in a blog post. "There's no other car like this in existence." And, he says, it's the first car that's ready to be produced at scale once the software and regulations are in place.

Posted by orrinj at 7:11 PM


With reforms, Palestinian economy could grow 7% each year -- World Bank (SUE SURKES, September 12, 2017, Times of Israel)

The bank called on the Palestinians to strengthen its central government and pass a series of fiscal reforms including improved tax collection, increased investment in public infrastructure and vocational training, and an overhaul of business regulation.

It also said Israel should streamline procedures at border crossings, remove restrictions on Palestinians entering Area C of the West Bank, which is controlled by Israel under the 1993 Oslo Accords, and lift the blockade on Gaza.

These measures from both sides could increase the West Bank's economy by 36% and Gaza's by 40% by 2025, the report predicted.

Israel has maintained a blockade on Gaza for 10 years...

Posted by orrinj at 10:12 AM


U.N. nuclear watchdog chief says Iran playing by the rules (Reuters, 9/11/17) 

Yukiya Amano, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), said Iran had not broken any promises and was not receiving special treatment.

"The nuclear-related commitments undertaken by Iran under the (deal) are being implemented," he said in the text of a speech to a quarterly meeting of the IAEA's 35-member Board of Governors.

Posted by orrinj at 10:07 AM


The Schadenfreude Phase Of The Trump Administration Is Hitting Already (Robert Tracinski, SEPTEMBER 11, 2017, The Federalist)

So Trump supporters are now in a situation where it looks like, by the end of his first year in office, there will be no wall, no mass deportations, no Obamacare repeal, no tax reform--but there will be multiple extension of the debt ceiling and a permanent legislative version of amnesty for some illegal aliens. But hey, we'll always have Neil Gorsuch!

As this possibility shapes up, Trump supporters have been caught out for having heaped invective in the past on establishment Republicans for doing the same thing Trump just did--and somehow not being able to apply the same standards to their man.

Except for Ann Coulter, who has been using Trump's preferred medium, Twitter, to push out a series of angry tweets denouncing him for selling out his supporters on their central agenda item, immigration.

The problem is that less than a year ago, Coulter published a book titled "In Trump We Trust," laying out the case for him as the one politician who would finally make good on her anti-immigration agenda. The key word there is "trust." Trump's fanatical advocates violated what I think should be the First Commandment of the Right: "Place not thy faith in politicians."

Yet these are the people who thumped their chests and mocked us for doubting Trump, declaring that we were weak and compromising and impugning our very manhoods. (Remember that these are the people who dragged the term "cuck" from its sordid corners of the Internet and brought it into the mainstream.)

So it's totally appropriate to take a few moments to gloat at the collapse of Trumpism. But let's not spend too long in this phase.

Mr. Mueller will end the phase.

Posted by orrinj at 10:04 AM


Sputnik, the Russian news agency, is under investigation by the FBI (Hunter Walker and Michael Isikoff, September 11, 2017, Yahoo News)

The FBI recently questioned a former White House correspondent for Sputnik, the Russian-government-funded news agency, as part of an investigation into whether it is acting as an undeclared propaganda arm of the Kremlin in violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA).

As part of the probe, Yahoo News has learned, the bureau has obtained a thumb drive containing thousands of internal Sputnik emails and documents -- material that could potentially help prosecutors build a case that the news agency played a role in the Russian government "influence campaign" that was waged during last year's presidential election and, in the view of U.S. intelligence officials, is still ongoing. [...]

"This is incredibly significant," said Asha Rangappa, a former FBI counterintelligence agent and now an associate dean of Yale Law School, about the bureau's questioning of the former Sputnik reporter. "The FBI has since the 1970s taken pains not to be perceived in any way as infringing on First Amendment activity. But this tells me they have good information and intelligence that these organizations have been acting on behalf of the Kremlin and that there's a direct line between them and the [Russian influence operations] that are a significant threat to our democracy."

Sputnik is owned by Rossiya Segodnya, a Russian government media operation headed by Dmitri Kiselyov, a belligerent television broadcaster who is known as Putin's "personal propagandist" and has been sanctioned by the European Union in response to Russia's intervention in Ukraine. On its website, Sputnik describes itself as a "modern news agency" that "covers global political and economic news targeting an international audience."

Posted by orrinj at 10:01 AM


Freedom is acting without asking permission, Edward Snowden tells Berlin (Deutsche-Welle, 9/11/17)

He continued, "When it comes to the self, that inherent seed that makes a person a person, these things must be free from permission. You don't ask; you act. That's freedom."

No one actually believes in freedom; we believe in liberty.

Posted by orrinj at 6:40 AM


Panel Repeats N.H. Fraud Claim (David Weigel, 9/08/17, The Washington Post)

"If 59.2 percent or more of them went for (Democratic Sen. Maggie) Hassan, then the election was stolen through voter fraud," Kobach wrote in a column for Breitbart News. "That's likely, since the surrounding states are Democrat (sic) strongholds."

Kobach apparently made no attempt to contact voters who'd cast ballots but held out-of-state IDs. On Thursday night, The Washington Post asked voters who'd done so to tell their stories; three did so within 60 minutes. The three were college students who were living in New Hampshire but did not change their licenses.

Patrick Derenze, 22, said that he voted with a New York ID, and was unaware of any New Hampshire law that required voters to change their licenses after voting.

"I was a student at Saint Anselm College in Manchester until I graduated this past May, and because I spent most of my time in the state I felt it was right I vote there instead of my native state of New York," Derenze said.

Alexander Rounaghi, 19, used his California ID to vote while studying at Dartmouth College. "I lived in New Hampshire then, and I'll live there again when I'm back from summer vacation," he explained.

Jonah Cohen, 20, also was studying at Dartmouth when he used his New York ID to vote in New Hampshire's 2016 election. "I've since transferred to Columbia, so I won't be voting in New Hampshire anymore, but I haven't changed my registration yet," he explained. "I did not end up getting a New Hampshire license, but I never needed one to vote."

It's possible that thousands of other New Hampshire college students voted the same way; the ability of temporary residents to swing close elections has been controversial in the state for years, as Democrats go through the same biennial battle to drive up turnout on campuses.

"Apparently, Kobach is saying that voting should be limited to people who drive cars," said David Becker, director of the Center for Election Innovation. "He's basically saying Bill Gardner, New Hampshire's secretary of state -- his colleague -- is incompetent. And he's doing it without a basis."

Posted by orrinj at 6:33 AM


Fears mount in Florida Keys over damage, possible deaths from Hurricane Irma (DAVID OVALLE AND DAVID GOODHUE, SEPTEMBER 10, 2017, Miami Herald)

There was plenty of damage in Key West: Surge swamped streets to hip level near Mallory Square, wrecked boats near Galleon Marina and toppled ficus trees onto cars. The huge trees also smashed parts of two houses on Williams Street -- one, neighbors said, belonging to the late, great children's book author Shel Silverstein.

*(credit to Foos)