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Max Forte

Max Forte's Public Library

  • Trump or not, America is pulling back from the world

     
     
      By Peter Apps
     
    March 29, 2016
  • For many Americans, the attacks on Brussels must have felt like more of the same. Once again, militants struck, the systems designed to stop them failed and all the blood and treasure of 15 years of “war on terror” appears more wasted than ever.

     

    From an outsider’s perspective, though, the way in which the United States reacts appears to be subtly shifting. Almost without noticing, America is beginning to dramatically rethink the way in which it interacts with the world.

     

    As with so many things, Donald Trump is the clearest manifestation of the trend. For all his talk of “making America great again,” the foreign policy he has begun to outline — particularly in interviews with senior editors at the New York Times and the Washington Post — smacks of outright isolationism.

  • Trump himself, it should be said, specifically rejects that label.

     

    Getting stuck on the semantics misses the point. On a much, much broader level — from the country at large to the corridors of the White House — feelings are also changing. Frustrations, regrets and a rethinking of how much America can or should do drips from almost every line of the must-read interview with President Barack Obama published earlier this month in the Atlantic.

     

    Speaking on condition of anonymity, several current and former U.S. officials have told me they no longer really feel they know what their country was trying to achieve in Iraq, Afghanistan or elsewhere. Such soul-searching is rarely done publicly, but it appears widespread.

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  • Thu Sep 29, 2016 | 6:46pm EDT 
       

    Clinton says Trump may have violated U.S. law on Cuba

  • U.S. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton said on Thursday that Republican opponent Donald Trump may have violated U.S. law, following a news report that one of his companies attempted to do business in Cuba.

    Newsweek said on Thursday that a hotel and casino company controlled by Trump secretly conducted business with Cuba that was illegal under U.S. sanctions in force during Fidel Castro's presidency of the Communist-ruled island.

    “Today we learned about his efforts to do business in Cuba which appear to violate U.S. law, certainly flout American foreign policy, and he has consistently misled people in responding to questions about whether he was attempting to do business in Cuba,” Clinton told reporters on her campaign plane.

  • Clinton and Trump are in a close race ahead of the Nov. 8 presidential election.

    The Trump campaign did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

       

    Newsweek, citing interviews with former Trump executives, internal company records and court filings, said the Trump company spent at least $68,000 for a 1998 trip to Cuba at a time when any corporate expenditure in the Caribbean country was prohibited without U.S. government approval

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  • The Opinion Pages | Editorial
  • Vladimir Putin’s Outlaw State

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  • Mr. President,
     Distinguished Members of the Council,
     Excellencies,
     Ladies and gentlemen,
     I am honoured to have the opportunity to address the Human Rights Council to provide further information on developments in Libya and their impact on the human rights situation.
  • Political, security and economic situation
     
     The signing of the Libyan Political Agreement in December 2015 and the entry of the Presidency Council in Tripoli last March created a moment of hope for the establishment of the rule of law in the country.  
     Unfortunately, we are now facing a political impasse as the House of Representatives has yet to fully endorse the Libyan Political Agreement and last month it voted against endorsing the Government of National Accord appointed by the Presidency Council. 
     Further, the Presidential Council has yet to appoint a focal point on justice issues, in the absence of an acting minister of justice.

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  • UNSMIL Spokesperson’s Clarification on SRSG Martin Kobler Statement to the Human Rights Council
  • 28 September 2016 - Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) Martin Kobler wishes to clarify his statements, on 27 September 2016, regarding de-criminalization of irregular migration in Libya, which has been widely misperceived.
  • In this context, Martin Kobler said, “Regrettably, my statements have been misinterpreted. Libya, as any sovereign country, of course has the right the full right to regulate entry across its borders. Irregular crossing of the borders can constitute an administrative offense, and must be dealt with, respecting the international standards that ensure the protection needs of migrants.

    “Libya maintains the right to deport irregular migrants under conditions that respect the human rights principles. The UN remains ready and committed to helping the Libyan authorities in its efforts to improve the situation of migrants,” added the Special Representative.

  • U of T professor attacks political correctness, says he refuses to use genderless pronouns
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  • TORONTO — As part of an hour-long YouTube lecture on political correctness, University of Toronto professor and clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson is objecting to the Trudeau government’s Bill C-16, which proposes to outlaw harassment and discrimination based on gender identity and gender expression under the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code.

     

    Peterson, a white male in his mid 50s, also decries what he claims are attempts by the university to transform its human resources department into “a politically correct institution.”

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  • Clinton confidant's immunity deal looms over debate: Jonathan Turley

  • FBI appears to have undermined its own investigation with ill-considered witness agreements.
  • When FBI Director James B. Comey announced that there would be no criminal charges in the Clinton email scandal, there was an outcry by many who saw glaring contradictions, attempts to destroy evidence, and knowing failures to protect classified or sensitive information.  At the time, I acknowledged that Comey’s decision was understandable and, while criminal charges might have been possible, this was not out of bounds of prosecutorial discretion. However, the news this week of a previously undisclosed immunity deal with a top Clinton aide raises serious questions over the handling of the FBI investigation.

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  • The FBI’s Hillary email probe is looking even more like a coverup
  • September 28, 2016

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  • Sep 28, 5:43 PM EDT

     

    Saudi Arabia has ways to hit back at 9/11 lawsuit effort 

     

     
     

  • DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) -- Saudi Arabia and its allies are warning that U.S. legislation allowing the kingdom to be sued for the 9/11 attacks will have negative repercussions.
  • The kingdom maintains an arsenal of tools to retaliate with, including curtailing official contacts, pulling billions of dollars from the U.S. economy, and persuading its close allies in the Gulf Cooperation Council to scale back counterterrorism cooperation, investments and U.S. access to important regional air bases.

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  • OPEC is finally agreeing to cut oil production.

    It would be the first time in eight years that the oil cartel would lower output. The agreement was reached on Wednesday at a meeting in Algiers.

     

    Oil prices surged more than 5% in reaction.

  • A global glut of oil supply caused oil prices to crash over the last two years. And OPEC nations, led by Saudi Arabia, have refused to lower production until now.

    Under the agreement, OPEC oil production is expected to be reduced to 32.5 million barrels of oil per day from 33.4 million. Saudi Arabia, the largest oil producer, is expected to give up 350,000 barrels a day, according to a senior OPEC source quoting the final proposal. Other OPEC nations are expected to lower production too, though more details were not immediately clear.

  • Three countries are exempted from the production cuts: Iran, Nigeria and Libya. Economic sanctions were lifted on Iran earlier this year, and Libya and Nigeria have had some of their oil facilities damaged by terrorist attacks in recent months.

    Oil prices were as high as $100 a barrel in mid-2014. But the global oversupply caused prices to plunge to as low as $26 a barrel in February. The volatility in oil caused stock markets to dive at the beginning of 2016.

    In recent months, oil prices have rebounded a bit and oil is currently hovering near $47 a barrel.

  • Sep 28, 3:25 PM EDT

     

    Congress overrides president's veto of Sept. 11 legislation 

     

     
     

  • WASHINGTON (AP) -- Congress voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to allow families of Sept. 11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia for its alleged backing of the attackers, handing Barack Obama the first veto override of his presidency.
  • Both the House and Senate voted decisively to reverse Obama's decision to scuttle the legislation. Democrats in both chambers abandoned the president in large numbers despite warnings from Obama and top national security officials that flaws in the bill could put U.S. interests, troops, and intelligence personnel at risk.

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  • Wed Sep 28, 2016 | 12:52pm EDT 
       

    Senate overwhelmingly rejects Obama veto of Saudi September 11 bill

  • The U.S. Senate on Wednesday overwhelmingly rejected President Barack Obama's veto of legislation allowing relatives of the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks to sue Saudi Arabia's government.

    The final vote was 97-1 against the veto. Democratic Minority Leader Harry Reid was the lone "no" vote.

    Democratic Senator Tim Kaine, Hillary Clinton's vice presidential running mate, and Bernie Sanders, an independent who caucuses with Democrats and is a former White House contender, did not vote.

  • The measure next goes to the House of Representatives, which was due to vote later on Wednesday. If two-thirds of House members also support the "Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act," it would be the first veto override of Obama's eight-year presidency.

    The Saudi government, a frequent U.S. partner in the Middle East, strongly opposed the bill, known as JASTA.

       

    Obama had argued that the legislation could expose U.S. companies, troops and officials to lawsuits, and alienate important allies at a time of global unrest.

  • The ultimate causes of Brexit: history, culture, and geography
  • Xenophobia, austerity, and dissatisfaction with politics may have contributed to the Brexit vote. But James Dennison and Noah Carl write that, although a number of concerns may have tipped the balance, Brexit was ultimately decided by more than recent events. Here, they demonstrate how the UK has been the least well-integrated EU member state, and so the closer the EU was moving toward political union, the more likely Brexit was becoming.
  • Since the British electorate voted to leave the European Union, many commentators have sought to explain (and often decry) the referendum’s outcome as the result of a misleading and demagogic Leave campaign, irrational xenophobia, simple racism, an obstinate protest vote, the government’s fiscal austerity policies, a largely Eurosceptic press, or general discontent about the economy. While several of these explanations have at least some merit, we believe they are insufficient. Indeed, they either put too much emphasis on recent events, or mistakenly assume that few Leave voters were motivated by dissatisfaction with Britain’s EU membership per se.

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  • Fight back against ‘anti-expert’ rhetoric, says Cambridge v-c

     
        
     
           
     

    Sir Leszek Borysiewicz to tell THE summit that universities rely on public trust and institutional autonomy

  • September 27, 2016

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  • Expect 'status quo' from US elections

    Steven Wieting

    by Steven Wieting, Global Chief Investment Strategist

    September 7 2016

    • Summary
         
      • Our base-case is that Hillary Clinton becomes next US President
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      • We also expect Republican control of at least one House of Congress
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      • We would expect financial markets to react positively to this “status-quo” outcome
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      • Internationally-focused US firms and the Mexican peso could rally more in that scenario
      • A Trump presidency would likely trigger risk aversion, and an initial drop in Treasury yields
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      • The greatest – albeit unlikely – risk for markets would be one-party control of both presidency and Congress
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      • The next presidential term will likely see lower market returns than those since 2008

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  • Wall Street Bank Whose Donors Back Clinton Say Election Will Likely Preserve Status Quo, But Could Bring Recession

    By @davidsirota On
  • For all the unpredictable tumult of the 2016 election and for all the candidates pledging to upend the status quo, one of Wall Street’s largest power players says that the most likely outcome is almost no real policy changes  — but there may be a higher-than-normal chance of a recession
  • In a paper timed to the first debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, Citigroup told its clients that “the probability of the status quo continuing for U.S. politics seems high.” The paper — produced by the bank unit that works specifically with ultra-wealthy clients — also said that “a consensus of forecasters currently puts the probability of a Clinton victory at 68 percent,” and that most expect Republicans to retain control of the U.S. House.

    “What does this mean?” the paper asked. “Divided U.S. government, with no major policy breakthroughs or break-ups looks most likely.”

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  • Clinton and her campaign stopped just short of calling Trump a ‘racist’ at the debate
  • Hunter Walker
    National Correspondent
  • HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — During their first presidential debate on Monday night, Democrat Hillary Clinton attacked her Republican rival, Donald Trump, for telling what she described as a “birther lie” that was “racist.” While she used the term “racist” to characterize Trump’s past comments, both Clinton and one of her top aides did not employ the word to describe Trump as a man.

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  • Here's A List Of 36 Of The Biggest Lies Hillary Has Told So Far
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    Posted Monday, September 26th 2016
  • Several major media outlets are practically stumping for Hillary Clinton ahead of Monday's presidential debate. Over the weekend The New York Times, The Washington Post, The LA Times, and Politico all published nearly identical articles about the "lies" they claim Donald Trump has told during the course of the 2016 election.

     

    Hot Air reports that although the timing is suspect, editors for the outlets maintain that the near-simultaneous publishing of the articles was merely a coincidence, and that there was no coordination with the Clinton campaign.

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Sep 27, 16

"The fact that Mr Trump can be a credible contender for the presidency is astounding. In business, he is a serial defaulter and litigator turned reality TV star. He is a peddler of falsehoods and conspiracy theories. He utters racist calumnies. He attacks the independence of the judiciary. He refuses to reveal his taxes. He has no experience of political office, and incoherent policies. He glories in ignorance. He even hints at a federal default. He undermines confidence in the US-created trade order, by threatening to tear up past agreements. He undermines confidence in US democracy by claiming the election will be rigged. He supports torture and the deliberate killing of the families of alleged terrorists. He admires the former KGB agent who runs Russia."

  • The FT Goes Full Fearmonger: Electing Trump "Would Unravel The World"

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
      Tyler Durden's picture
     
       
      Sep 27, 2016
  • It would appear that, despite the tsunami of 'spin' across every major media platform since the end of the debate, the establishment is gravely concerned at Donald Trump's proximity to 'their gal' in the polls. With Hillary herself questioning "why am I not 50 points ahead?", The Financial Times has unleashed Martin Wolf to explain to the ignorant mass of deplorables just how apocalyptic a Trump presidency would be...
  • Sometimes history jumps. Think of the first world war, the Bolshevik revolution, the Great Depression, the election of Adolf Hitler, the second world war, the beginning of the cold war, the collapse of the European empires, Deng Xiaoping’s “reform and opening up” of China, the demise of the Soviet Union, and the financial crisis of 2007-09 and subsequent “great recession”.

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  • - September 26, 2016 -
     

    Hillary Clinton Is The Only Candidate On Stage To Vote For Iraq War

     

    On October 11, 2002, Clinton Voted In Favor Of A Joint Resolution To Authorize The Use Of Military Force Against Iraq.(H.J. Res 114, Roll Call Vote #237: Passed 77-23: R 48-1; D 29-22, 10/11/02, Clinton Voted Yea)

    Bernie Sanders Has Claimed That Hillary Clinton Doesn't Have The Judgment To Be President, Partly Due To Her Iraq War Vote. SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D-VT): "But I do Question Her Judgment. I question a judgment which voted for the war in Iraq, the worst foreign policy blunder in the history of this country."(New York Democratic Primary Debate, 4/14/16)

  • Sanders Said That Clinton "Might Want To Apologize To The Families Who Lost Their Loved Ones In Iraq." "The Vermont senator has sharpened his tone in recent days. After a Clinton supporter and daughter of the principal killed at Sandy Hook said that Sanders owes her 'an apology' for opposing lawsuits against gun manufacturers, Sanders rebuked Clinton harshly. 'Maybe Secretary Clinton might want to apologize to the fa

    milies who lost their loved ones in Iraq,' he said on CBS."(Sam Frizell, "Clinton And Sanders Clash On Qualifications As Democratic Race Gets Bitter," Time, 4/7/16)

    Donald Trump Opposed The Iraq War From The Very Beginning

  • In February 2002, Trump Was Asked About The Iraq Invasion But Did Not Express An Opinion Either Way. “Sept. 7, 2002: Trump had a lengthy interview with Fox News host Rita Cosby about the terrorist attacks, security concerns, the post-9/11 economy and the rebuilding effort. If Trump truly was opinionated against the invasion, he didn’t mention it at all in this interview.” (Michelle Ye Hee Lee, “Timeline of Trump’s comments on Iraq invasion: Not loud, not strong, and no headlines,” Washington Post, 2/25/16)

    BACKGROUND: Trump had never discussed Iraq before his Howard Stern appearance in 2002. In the context of the Iraq War that began under the George W. Bush Administration; Mr. Trump spoke about the issue in 2002 as a public figure.

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