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Missing Ex-FBI Agent Robert Levinson Declared Dead By Family

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Missing Ex-FBI Agent Robert Levinson Declared Dead By Family

The family of Robert Levinson, a former FBI agent-turned-private-contractor who disappeared in Iran more than a decade ago while purportedly on a mission for the CIA, announced Wednesday that they believe he is dead.





Levinson



In a statement given to CNN, Levinson's family said it received information from "US officials" that has "led them a

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nd us to conclude that our wonderful husband and father died while in Iranian custody."



Though they don't know when or how it happened, the family claimed that Levinson had passed before the COVID-19 pandemic started.




"We recently received information from U.S. officials that has led both them and us to conclude that our wonderful husband and father died while in Iranian custody. We don't know when or how he died, only that it was prior to the COVID-19 pandemic," they said in a statement.



"It is impossible to describe our pain," the family said. "Our family will spend the rest of our lives without the most amazing man we have ever known, a new reality that is inconceivable to us. His grandchildren will never meet him. They will only know him through the stories we tell them."



"Those who are responsible for what happened to Bob Levinson, including those in the U.S. government who for many years repeatedly left him behind, will ultimately receive justice for what they have done. We will spend the rest of our lives making sure of this, and the Iranian regime must know we will not be going away. We expect American officials, as well as officials around the world, to continue to press Iran to seek Bob's return, and to ensure those Iranian officials involved are held accountable," they said.




In their statement, the family thanked President Trump and several members of his administration, including National Security Advisor Robert C. O'Brien, Secretary of State Michael Pompeo, Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell, CIA Director Gina Haspel, and FBI Director Christopher Wray, as well as their staff - who have done "all they could to make our family whole again."




"Our family also wishes to thank Congressman Ted Deutch, Senator Bill Nelson, Senator Marco Rubio and Senator Bob Menendez, and their staff members, who fought for Bob Levinson in every possible way," they added.



"Bob Levinson was a truly remarkable individual - the best husband, father, brother, grandfather and friend anyone could ever ask for. He was an American hero - a true patriot, and his compassion and kindness knew no bounds," the family said. "We will miss his warmth, humor, and wisdom, but most of all, we will miss the deep and unconditional love he had for each one of us. He will never be forgotten - we will make sure of it."




The statement is signed by "Christine, Susan, Stephanie, Sarah, Daniel, David, Samantha, and Douglas, and the entire extended Levinson family."



During Trump's Wednesday night press conference, President Trump refused to accept that Levinson is dead, but added that "it's not looking good."




Levinson disappeared in March while traveling to Kish Island, in Iran. It's widely believed he was kidnapped by Iranian intelligence to be used as a bargaining chip in negotiations, though the Iranian regime never publicly accepted responsibility.




Tyler Durden

Wed, 03/25/2020 - 19:10
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Not Just Hunter: Widespread Biden Family Profiteering Exposed

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Not Just Hunter: Widespread Biden Family Profiteering Exposed

Clinton Cash author Peter Schweizer is out with a new book, "Profiles in Corruption: Abuse of Power by America’s Progressive Elite," in which he reveals that five members of the Biden family, including Hunter, got rich using former Vice President Joe Biden's "largesse, favorable access and powerful position."


Frank Biden, Vice President Joe Biden, & Mindy Ward
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em>

While we know of Hunter's profitable exploits in Ukraine and China - largely in part thanks to Schweizer, Joe's brothers James and Frank, his sister Valerie, and his son-in-law Howard all used the former VP's status to enrich themselves.



Of course, Biden in 2019 said "I never talked with my son or my brother or anyone else — even distant family — about their business interests. Period."



As Schweizer puts writes in the New York Post; "we shall see."



James Biden: Joe's younger brother James has been deeply involved in the lawmaker's rise since the early days - serving as his the finance chair of his 1972 Senate campaign. And when Joe became VP, James was a frequent guest at the White House - scoring invites to important state functions which often "dovetailed with his overseas business dealings," writes Schweizer.






Consider the case of HillStone International, a subsidiary of the huge construction management firm, Hill International. The president of HillStone International was Kevin Justice, who grew up in Delaware and was a longtime Biden family friend. On November 4, 2010, according to White House visitors’ logs, Justice visited the White House and met with Biden adviser Michele Smith in the Office of the Vice President.



Less than three weeks later, HillStone announced that James Biden would be joining the firm as an executive vice president. James appeared to have little or no background in housing construction, but that did not seem to matter to HillStone. His bio on the company’s website noted his “40 years of experience dealing with principals in business, political, legal and financial circles across the nation and internationally…”



James Biden was joining HillStone just as the firm was starting negotiations to win a massive contract in war-torn Iraq. Six months later, the firm announced a contract to build 100,000 homes. It was part of a $35 billion, 500,000-unit project deal won by TRAC Development, a South Korean company. HillStone also received a $22 million U.S. federal government contract to manage a construction project for the State Department. -Peter Schweizer, via NY Post




According to Fox Business's Charlie Gasparino in 2012, HillStone's Iraq project was expected to "generate $1.5 billion in revenues over the next three years," more than tripling their revenue. According to the report, James Biden split roughly $735 million with a group of minority partners.



David Richter - the son of HillStone's parent company's founder - allegedly told investors at a private meeting; it really helps to have "the brother of the vice president as a partner."



Unfortunately for James, HillStone had to back out of the major contract in 2013 over a series of problems, including a lack of experience - but the company maintained "significant contract work in the embattled country" of Iraq, including a six-year contract with the US Army Corps of Engineers.



In the ensuing years, James Biden profited off of Hill's lucrative contracts for dozens of projects in the US, Puerto Rico, Mozambique and elsewhere.



Frank Biden, another one of Joe's brothers (who said the Pennsylvania Bidens voted for Trump over Hillary), profited handsomely on real estate, casinos, and solar power projects after Joe was picked as Obma's point man in Latin America and the Caribbean.





Months after Joe visited Costa Rica, Frank partnered with developer Craig Williamson and the Guanacaste Country Club on a deal which appears to be ongoing.




In real terms, Frank’s dream was to build in the jungles of Costa Rica thousands of homes, a world-class golf course, casinos, and an anti-aging center. The Costa Rican government was eager to cooperate with the vice president’s brother.



As it happened, Joe Biden had been asked by President Obama to act as the Administration’s point man in Latin America and the Caribbean.



Frank’s vision for a country club in Costa Rica received support from the highest levels of the Costa Rican government— despite his lack of experience in building such developments. He met with the Costa Rican ministers of education and energy and environment, as well as the president of the country. -NY Post




And in 2016, the Costa Rican Ministry of Public Education inked a deal with Frank's Company, Sun Fund Americas to install solar power facilities across the country - a project the Obama administration's OPIC authorized $6.5 million in taxpayer funds to support.



This went hand-in-hand with a solar initiative Joe Biden announced two years earlier, in which "American taxpayer dollars were dedicated to facilitating deals that matched U.S. government financing with local energy projects in Caribbean countries, including Jamaica," known as the Caribbean Energy Security Initiative (CESI).



Frank Biden's Sun Fund Americas announced later that it had signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) to build a 20-megawatt solar facility in Jamaica.



Valerie Biden-Owens, Joe's sister, has run all of her brother's Senate campaigns - as well as his 1988 and 2008 presidential runs.





She was also a senior partner in political messaging firm Joe Slade White & Company, where she and Slade White were listed as the only two executives at the time.



According to Schweizer, "The firm received large fees from the Biden campaigns that Valerie was running. Two and a half million dollars in consulting fees flowed to her firm from Citizens for Biden and Biden For President Inc. during the 2008 presidential bid alone."



Dr. Howard Krein - Joe Biden's son-in-law, is the chief medical officer of StartUp Health - a medical investment consultancy that was barely up and running when, in June 2011, two of the company's execs met with Joe Biden and former President Obama in the Oval Office.





The next day, the company was included in a prestigious health care tech conference run by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) - while StartUp Health executives became regular White House visitors between 2011 and 2015.




StartUp Health offers to provide new companies technical and relationship advice in exchange for a stake in the business. Demonstrating and highlighting the fact that you can score a meeting with the president of the United States certainly helps prove a strategic company asset: high-level contacts. -NY Post




Speaking of his homie hookup, Krein described how his company gained access to the highest levels of power in D.C.:



"I happened to be talking to my father-in-law that day and I mentioned Steve and Unity were down there [in Washington, D.C.]," recalled Howard Krein. "He knew about StartUp Health and was a big fan of it. He asked for Steve’s number and said, ‘I have to get them up here to talk with Barack.’ The Secret Service came and got Steve and Unity and brought them to the Oval Office."



And then, of course, there's Hunter Biden - who was paid millions of dollars to sit on the board of Ukrainian energy giant Burisma while his father was Obama's point man in the country.



But it goes far beyond that for the young crack enthusiast.




With the election of his father as vice president, Hunter Biden launched businesses fused to his father’s power that led him to lucrative deals with a rogue’s gallery of governments and oligarchs around the world. Sometimes he would hitch a prominent ride with his father aboard Air Force Two to visit a country where he was courting business. Other times, the deals would be done more discreetly. Always they involved foreign entities that appeared to be seeking something from his father.



There was, for example, Hunter’s involvement with an entity called Burnham Financial Group, where his business partner Devon Archer — who’d been at Yale with Hunter — sat on the board of directors. Burnham became the vehicle for a number of murky deals abroad, involving connected oligarchs in Kazakhstan and state-owned businesses in China.



But one of the most troubling Burnham ventures was here in the United States, in which Burnham became the center of a federal investigation involving a $60 million fraud scheme against one of the poorest Indian tribes in America, the Oglala Sioux.



Devon Archer was arrested in New York in May 2016 and charged with “orchestrating a scheme to defraud investors and a Native American tribal entity of tens of millions of dollars.” Other victims of the fraud included several public and union pension plans. Although Hunter Biden was not charged in the case, his fingerprints were all over Burnham. The “legitimacy” that his name and political status as the vice president’s son lent to the plan was brought up repeatedly in the trial. -NY Post




Read the rest of the report here.




Tyler Durden

Sun, 01/19/2020 - 12:30
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Americans Are Lonely, Miserable, & Depressed: The Legacy Of A Society That Has Rejected Family, Faith, & Patriotism

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Americans Are Lonely, Miserable, & Depressed: The Legacy Of A Society That Has Rejected Family, Faith, & Patriotism

Authored by Michael Snyder via TheMostImportantNews.com,



What in the world has happened to us? Once upon a time, America was made up of tightly-knit communities that were united by family, faith and patriotism, but now we are more isolated than ever before. Of course one of the biggest reasons for this is

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the fact that we are all spending countless hours staring at screens instead of interacting with real people, and this is something that I covered in a previous article. However, our fundamental beliefs are also significantly shaping how we behave. For the past couple of generations, we have de-emphasized family, faith and patriotism as a nation, and instead we have become an extremely “me-centered” society that is primarily focused on doing whatever makes ourselves happy in the moment. But this single-minded pursuit of individual happiness has resulted in much of the country being perpetually mired in loneliness, depression and/or addiction.





When you look at the numbers, they truly are startling. For example, a recent survey that was conducted by Cigna found that almost half of all Americans feel lonely…




Nearly half of Americans are lonely, according to a survey of 20,000 people across America by Cigna, which used the well-regarded UCLA Loneliness Scale to measure responses. Indeed 46% said they sometimes or always feel alone and 47% say they sometimes or always feel left out.




And other surveys have produced numbers that are even more alarming. A Harris Poll that was conducted a few years ago actually discovered that 72 percent of all Americans “experience loneliness”…




The survey of more than 2,000 Americans conducted by the Harris Poll last month on behalf of the American Osteopathic Association, showed that almost three-quarters (72 percent) of Americans experience loneliness. And for many, it’s not just a once-in-a-while occurrence — one-third said they feel lonely at least once a week.




Of course this is commonly known as “the happiest time of the year”, but for many it just magnifies their loneliness.



People see love, warmth and community modeled in television commercials and in Hallmark movies, and they assume that most people out there must be living lives like that.



Sadly, that is not true at all. What we see on our televisions are echoes of the way that America used to be, and many of us would love to see that type of culture make a roaring comeback.



But for now, America is a very, very lonely place, and this reality is reflected in a song that was just released by one of our most popular pop singers…




Mabel, the singer behind the hit “Don’t Call Me Up,” has a new track for those who struggle with loneliness during the holidays.



Titled “Loneliest Time of Year,” Mabel captured how for some people, the holidays can heighten feelings like loneliness, loss and depression. In the song, released Friday, she sings lines like, “Sorry I’m not so merry/But I feel like this yearly/Christmas time isn’t my vibe/Brings no joy into my life” and “If I’m feeling lonely/I can’t be the only one.”




Yes, millions of American families will gather during the holidays, but way too many of those gatherings are filled with bitterness, resentment, strife and discord.



In fact, another new survey has found that the average American only needs 3 hours and 54 minutes “before they start to feel sick of their families”…




The holidays are supposed to be a time to come together with family and celebrate, but a new survey finds that most Americans can barely get through an evening with their family before needing a break. A total of 2,000 Americans who usually travel to visit family during the holidays took part in the research, and 75% say they will inevitably need to get away from their relatives and indulge in some much needed “me time.”



In fact, it only takes respondents an average of three hours and 54 minutes before they start to feel sick of their families.




This isn’t how it is supposed to be.



We were created to love and to be loved. And when you remove love from the equation, people become very miserable quite rapidly.



In America today, “deaths of despair” are happening at the highest rate in all of U.S. history. The following information comes directly from the United States Congress Joint Economic Committee…




Anne Case and Angus Deaton famously chronicled a dramatic rise among middle-aged non-Hispanic whites since 1999 in “deaths of despair”—deaths by suicide, drug and alcohol poisoning, and alcoholic liver disease and cirrhosis.1 The Social Capital Project has extended Case and Deaton’s research to cover the full American population as far back as available data permit: to 1900 in some cases, and to 1959 or 1968 in others. We present here a snapshot of the long-term trends in deaths of despair. We also attach our full dataset for use in future research, including results broken down by age, sex, and race.



Mortality from deaths of despair far surpasses anything seen in America since the dawn of the 20th century. (The trend for middle-aged whites reveals a more dramatic rise but only goes back continuously to 1959.) The recent increase has primarily been driven by an unprecedented epidemic of drug overdoses, but even excluding those deaths, the combined mortality rate from suicides and alcohol-related deaths is higher than at any point in more than 100 years.




So it would appear that our very unhappy nation is rapidly becoming even unhappier.



And it doesn’t take a genius to figure out what this is happening.



As a society, we decided that marriage wasn’t important. So now we have one of the lowest marriage rates and one of the highest divorce rates in the entire world.



As a society, we decided that children weren’t important. So now our birth rate has dropped below replacement level and a third of all U.S. children live in a home without a father.



As a society, we decided that patriotism wasn’t important. So now the American flag is being banned by some schools as a “divisive symbol” and most of our young people have never even read the entire U.S. Constitution.



As a society, we decided that God wasn’t important. So now just about every form of evil that you can possibly imagine is exploding in our society, and we are literally on a path that leads to national suicide.



If you feel lonely, miserable or depressed this holiday season, I would definitely encourage you to get my latest book entitled “Living A Life That Really Matters”. It is filled with very practical advice that will enable you to start turning things around immediately. But even more importantly, reach out to those that you love during this holiday season.



Life is way too short to live it alone.



Society would have us believe that those that have the most money are the most “successful”. But that is not true at all. In reality, those that love the most are really the most “successful”, and so let us endeavor to be people of great love.




Tyler Durden

Fri, 12/13/2019 - 22:05


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Social Issues

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SoCal Church Displays Holy Family As "Caged Refugees" At The Border

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SoCal Church Displays Holy Family As "Caged Refugees" At The Border

Authored by Eoin Higgins via CommonDreams.org,





A Nativity scene in the southern California city of Claremont depicting the Holy Family as a separated family held in cages at the U.S. border is sparking controversy and conversations over President Donald Trump’s immigration policies.




“If this isn’t your c

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hurch’s politics, you’ve got the wrong faith,” tweeted music journalist Zel McCarthy.




Vanity Fair writer Anthony Breznican said that the Claremont United Methodist Church tableau, depicting Joseph and Mary in cages on either side of a caged baby Jesus Christ, was an accurate representation of the meaning of the Bible story.




“I love the Nativity story,” said Breznican.



“I love it not because it is warm and fuzzy, but because it is about perseverance against cruelty.”





Breznican added that the Nativity story points the finger at those who, when faced with evil, do nothing.




“The monster of the Nativity story is not King Herod, the bloodthirsty tyrant,” said Breznican. “He is just the backdrop.”



“The villain is the innkeeper, a common everyday person, who sees their dire situation and chooses not to help,” Breznican continued.



“No room. Sorry. America is full of innkeepers these days.”




The exhibit represents “a not-so implicit criticism of the Trump administration’s border separation policies,” said Politico reporter Dan Goldberg.



Claremont United Methodist Church Rev. Karen Clark Ristine told L.A. Times reporter James Queally that the scene was intended to use the Holy Family to highlight the “nameless families” who are victims of the border crackdown.




“We’ve heard of their plight; we’ve seen how these asylum seekers have been greeted and treated,” said Ristine.



“We wanted the Holy Family to stand in for those nameless people because they also were refugees.”



“We don’t see it as political; we see it as theological,” she added.




Ristine’s sharing of a photo of the scene on Facebook sparked controversy, with some commenters calling the pastor “an instigator; a trouble maker who does not have this country’s best interests,” and questioning the purpose of the scene.





In her post, Ristine said that the Nativity scene was meant to send a message.



“Imagine Joseph and Mary separated at the border and Jesus no older than two taken from his mother and placed behind the fences of a Border Patrol detention center as more than 5,500 children have been the past three years,” wrote Ristine. “Jesus grew up to teach us kindness and mercy and a radical welcome of all people.”




Tyler Durden

Wed, 12/11/2019 - 23:05
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George Zimmerman Sues Trayvon Martin's Family, Others For $100 Million In New Lawsuit

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George Zimmerman Sues Trayvon Martin's Family, Others For $100 Million In New Lawsuit

Authored by Emma Fiala via TheMindUnleashed.com,



Despite having gotten away with murder, neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman has just filed a $100 million lawsuit against the family of Trayvon Martin and attorney Ben Crump, claiming that they engineered false evidence against him.





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Zimmerman, who was acquitted of homicide charges in the 2012 shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, is being represented by high-profile lawyer, founder of Judicial Watch and Freedom Watch, and former US Department of Justice prosecutor, Larry Klayman in a lawsuit seeking damages for defamation, abuse of civil process, and conspiracy.



Martin was shot and killed on February 26, 2012 when he was returning to his father’s home, whom he was visiting, after purchasing candy at a local store. Zimmerman reported Martin as suspicious in a call to police. Zimmerman claims he followed Martin after making the call and was attacked by the teen before killing him. Martin was unarmed, carrying only the Skittles and a drink he had just purchased.



The lawsuit, to be filed Wednesday in Polk County where Zimmerman lives, alleges that Rachel Jeantel, a key witness in the 2013 murder trial, actually wasn’t a witness at all and was instead “an imposter and fake witness” coached by the family and their lawyers to take the place of Diamond Eugene.



Information cited in the case comes from the book and accompanying documentary The Trayvon Hoax: Unmasking the Witness Fraud that Divided America, which accuses the family of creating false testimony. The film was scheduled to be screened in Coral Gables, Florida but, in light of recent developments, Coral Gables Art Cinema announced it would be canceling the event along with a press conference with the film’s director, Joe Gilbert.




According to the book, Martin’s cell phone records prove that Eugene, whom they say was Martin’s actual girlfriend at the time, was on the phone with him at the time of the shooting. The book accuses Martin’s family and lawyers for swapping Eugene out for Jeantel when Eugene refused to testify. The book charges that Jeantel “lied repeatedly to cause Zimmerman’s arrest and to try to send him to prison for life.”



A media advisory posted on Klayman’s website prior to the filing of the suit mentions the now cancelled press conference and screening and explains the inspiration behind the suit:




“Specifically, the complaint alleges that in March 2012, the Sanford Police Department thoroughly investigated the shooting of Trayvon Martin and closed the case as self-defense. A week later, Martin family attorney Benjamin Crump produced a recorded audio tape of “Diamond Eugene” whom he said was Trayvon’s 16-year-old girlfriend who was on the phone with Trayvon just before the altercation. However, two weeks later, 18-year-old Rachel Jeantel, the alleged imposter, appeared before prosecutors claiming to be “Diamond Eugene” and provided false statements to incriminate Zimmerman based on coaching from others.



These allegations are the result of newly discovered evidence just published in a book and film by Hollywood film director Joel Gilbert, called The Trayvon Hoax: Unmasking the Witness Fraud that Divided America. Based on Trayvon’s cell phone records, they allegedly show that Rachel Jeantel was not Trayvon’s girlfriend, was not on the phone with Trayvon before the altercation, and that she lied repeatedly to cause Zimmerman’s arrest and to try to send him to prison for life. The research also allegedly reveals that Trayvon’s real girlfriend and legitimate phone witness was in fact Miami resident Brittany Diamond Eugene, who was switched out for Jeantel when Eugene refused to bear false witness against Zimmerman.”




According to the Miami Herald, the film’s director distributed a copy of the suit, which does not yet appear in the online docket of the Polk County court system, to media.



Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, is the lead defendant in the suit. Since her son’s death, Fulton has become somewhat of a national figure both as an advocate for reducing gun deaths and as a surrogate for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Fulton is currently running for a seat on the Miami-Dade County Commission.



The family’s lawyer, Ben Crump, also a defendant in the suit, responded in a statement on Wednesday:




“I have every confidence that this unfounded and reckless lawsuit will be revealed for what it is—another failed attempt to defend the indefensible and a shameless attempt to profit off the lives and grief of others.”




The suit also names book publisher Harper Collins over Crump’s book Open Season: Legalized Genocide of Colored People, as well as Tracy Martin, Trayvon’s father; Florida prosecutors Bernie de la Rionda, John Guy, and Angela Corey; the Florida Department of Law Enforcement; and the state of Florida.



Zimmerman contends that his version of events that took place on the evening of February 26, 2012 are correct while Martin’s family engineered a false narrative. All of the defendants in the suit are accused of “knowing about or should have known about the witness fraud, obstructing justice” or repeatedly lying “under oath in order to cover up their knowledge of the witness fraud.”




Tyler Durden

Wed, 12/04/2019 - 23:15


Tags

Law Crime
Entertainment Culture

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Taylor Swift's Army Of Ride-Or-Die Fans Sent A Flurry Of Death Threats To Music Manager And Family

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Taylor Swift's Army Of Ride-Or-Die Fans Sent A Flurry Of Death Threats To Music Manager And Family

When Taylor Swift called on her legion of die-hard fans (the "Swifties", as they're known) to pressure music manager Scott "Scooter" Braun into letting her perform a medley of hits from throughout her career at the American Music Awards on Sunday, she apparently opened up Pandora's Box.



Because Swift's ride-or-die fans have apparently been pep

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pering Braun and his family with death threats, prompting Braun to break his six-month silence on the feud to plead with Swift to call off her dogs.



In an Instagram post on Friday, Braun accused Swift of putting his wife and children in danger.






 


 

 



 




View this post on Instagram


 



 

 

 



 

 



 

 

 



@taylorswift



A post shared by Scooter Braun (@scooterbraun) on Nov 22, 2019 at 12:09am PST




Here's a couple of snippets from the text:




"This morning I spoke out publicly for the first time saying I wouldn’t participate in a social media war. However, I came home tonight to find my wife had received a phone call threatening the safety of our children, as well as other threats seen above," Braun, 38, wrote. "I won’t go in to the details of this past week. I have been at a loss. Thinking of my wife and children, my team and their families, I have gone through a range of emotions on how to deal with this."



“It is important that you understand that your words carry a tremendous amount of weight," Braun said. "Your message can be interpreted by some in different ways."




According to the New York Daily News, one of the threats sent to Braun's family read: "Hi, why do you just die with your children??? I will buy a gun [tomorrow] and [then] shoot you [all in] the head."





Taylor Swift



Braun told the Daily News that he contacted Swift via her attorney to complain about the threats four days ago, but has yet to hear back. But even before the threats, Braun said he'd tried to contact Swift several times to try and quash the beef, but has had "no luck."



Swift and Braun have been feuding for years, but the long-time music manager's decision to buy the rights to Swift's back catalogue as part of a deal to buy her old record label earlier this year reignited their feud, and ratcheted it up to absurd new heights.





Scooter Braun



On June 30, Braun's Ithaca Holdings acquired Swift's old record label, Big Machine Records, along with Taylor Swift’s six-album catalog in a $300 million deal that was financed (as we've mentioned) by private equity firm Carlyle Group.



Since the deal, there's been a lot of "he said, she said"-type drama between Swift, Braun and Big Machine founder Scott Borchetta, who helped launch Swift's career as a country darling in Nashville. 



Since her post earlier this week accusing Braun and Borchetta of trying to stop her from performing a medley of her hits at the AMA Sunday night, Swift clarified a few days later that the two had apparently changed their minds, and that Swift would be allowed to perform the songs.




Tyler Durden

Fri, 11/22/2019 - 22:05


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Human Interest

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Royal Family Biographer Defends Prince Andrew: "Soliciting Sex From Minors Is Not Pedophilia"

zerohedge News royal family biographer defends prince andrew soliciting from minors pedophilia All https://www.zerohedge.com   Discuss    Share
Royal Family Biographer Defends Prince Andrew: "Soliciting Sex From Minors Is Not Pedophilia"

Authored by John Vibes via TheMindUnleashed.com,



Biographer for the Royal Family, Lady Colin Campbell, recently appeared on ITV’s Good Morning Britain where she defended Prince Andrew against claims of pedophilia.





In her defense of the disgraced prince, Campbell pointed to the “prostitution

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” charge that Jeffrey Epstein was convicted of in 2008, and attempted to downplay the fact that the girls were underage by suggesting that he was simply hiring sex workers.




“You all seem to have forgotten that Jeffrey Epstein, the offense for which he was charged and for which he was imprisoned, was for soliciting prostitution from minors. That is not the same thing as pedophilia,” Campbell told a shocked panel Monday morning.




Host Piers Morgan immediately challenged her claims, saying:




If you solicited a 14-year-old for prostitution, you’re a pedophile.



You’re procuring an underage girl for sex. That’s what he was convicted of. I’m sorry, I’m sorry, with respect, that is nonsense.”




Campbell then immediately attempted to backpedal, claiming that a distinction must be made between a minor and a child.




“Was he? 14? Well, I’m not justifying Jeffrey Epstein. Pedophilia, I suspect there’s a difference between a minor and a child,” she said.



“A 14-year-old is a child. Legally, she’s a child,” Morgan replied.




Campbell then admitted that the prince may have “made many mistakes,” but insisted that his only mistake was being too clueless to realize that one of his closest friends was a predator.




“You can’t criticize someone because they aren’t as bright as you would like them to be,” she said.






The controversy surrounding Prince Andrew has grown since his Newsnight interview with Emily Maitlis. In the interview, the prince gave a variety of bizarre excuses and defenses for the accusations against him, including a claim that he could not sweat due to a rare physical condition.



He also denied knowing about the trafficking victim, Virginia Giuffre—formerly known as Virginia Roberts—despite appearing in photos with her when she was under the age of 18. However, he has previously suggested that these photos are “doctored.” Photographic evidence has been uncovered showing that the prince does, in fact, sweat. He also claimed that even though he did not remember meeting the victim on the night that she said, he does vividly remember his alibi, saying he went to a Pizza Express in Woking before returning home that night.






“Going to Pizza Express in Woking is an unusual thing for me to do, a very unusual thing for me to do. I’ve never been… I’ve only been to Woking a couple of times and I remember it weirdly distinctly,” he said.




The interview was so disastrous for the Royal Family that one of Prince Andrew’s PR advisors quit in response to the broadcast. And to make matters even worse, a video clip from 1984 recently resurfaced showing Johnny Carson, then-host of The Tonight Show, making a joke about Prince Andrew being a pedophile.





None of this looks good for the Royal Family.




Tyler Durden

Tue, 11/19/2019 - 05:00


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Secret Service Wants Jet Skis For Mar-a-Lago & Hamptons As Trump Family "Very Active In Water"

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Secret Service Wants Jet Skis For Mar-a-Lago & Hamptons As Trump Family "Very Active In Water"

A Secret Service memo has requested the need for jet skis to protect President Trump's family and friends -- while at vacation properties at President Trump's exclusive south Florida Mar-a-Lago Club and other properties in the Hamptons. 



The memo said the agency needs two jet skis and a trailer to "enhance safety/security for protective assignm

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ents on the water."





The agency has requested two Kawaski jet skis that retail for more than $10,000 per unit. The request noted security challenges that special agents face while traveling to President Trump's golf courses and resorts. 




"President Trump and his family spend several weeks throughout the year in Mara Largo FL and Hamptons NY. The First Family is very active in water sports," the request states, which was first highlighted by WRC-TV reporter Scott McFarlane.




Previously, Secret Service agents have rented jet skis with their own money, the memo said.




"Several family members along with their guest participate in open water activities for which USSS Special Agent Rescue Swimmers are responsible," the request continues.



"SA's have rented watercraft with their own personal funds to allow them to be near our protectees in various water environments to fulfill the USSS Rescue Swimmer mission."




The Secret Service said the 4-stroke, 4-cylinder 1498cc jet skis will be stored at the agency's training center in Beltsville, Maryland. 





To protect President Trump's family and friends at golf courses and resorts, the Secret Service must adapt to their luxurious lifestyles. 





Special agents have found themselves increasingly putting around on E-Z-GO golf carts and jet skis over the last several years. 





According to Trump Golf Count, President Trump has visited golf courses about 217 times since his inauguration, with evidence of playing golf on at least 101 visits (the data runs through Sept. 15). 



The Secret Service has protected President Trump and his family at Mar a Lago at least 91 times and at his Bedminster course 75 times since his inauguration. 





As a reminder, President Trump made this promise to the American people in 2016: "I'm going to be working for you. I'm not going to have time to go play golf." 





So far, President Trump's golf outings have cost taxpayers nearly $109 million. Maybe it's time for the president to start picking up some of the tabs, like jet skis for the Secret Service. 




Tyler Durden

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 22:15
1
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