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TBR News October 29, 2018

Oct 29 2018

The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Isaiah 40:3-8 

Washington, D.C. October 29, 2018:” No one with an IQ larger than their shirt collar size doubts that the far right speeches of Donald Trump are the factor which has activated murderous lunatics to commit a string of horrible and vicious crimes against those whom they see are opposed to the fascist policies of the President.

Several of the internet sites that cater to murder and violence have assured potential assassins and mass murderers that for a certainty, if they are convicted of their crimes, Trump will pardon them from their prison sentences and that later, they will enter a pantheon dedicated to True American mass murderers and the precious few who recognize Donald Trump as the new American Führer.

And if Trump and his lunatic supporters have their way, all dark-skinned peoples (and non-Christians) will either be put into camps or deported in rubber bags.

It will be interesting to see the results of the upcoming mid-term Congressional elections.”

The Table of Contents 

  • Donald Trump has said 2291 false things as U.S. president: No. 64
  • Trump Is the Glue That Binds the Far Right
  • Trump, ‘purveyor of hate speech’, not welcome in Pittsburgh, says former synagogue leader
  • The CIA Confessions: The Crowley Conversations

 

Donald Trump has said 2291 false things as U.S. president: No. 64

August 8, 2018

by Daniel Dale, Washington Bureau Chief

The Toronto Star, Canada

The Star is keeping track of every false claim U.S. President Donald Trump has made since his inauguration on Jan. 20, 2017. Why? Historians say there has never been such a constant liar in the Oval Office. We think dishonesty should be challenged. We think inaccurate information should be corrected

If Trump is a serial liar, why call this a list of “false claims,” not lies? You can read our detailed explanation here. The short answer is that we can’t be sure that each and every one was intentional. In some cases, he may have been confused or ignorant. What we know, objectively, is that he was not teling the truth.

Last updated: Aug 8, 2018

  • Apr 3, 2018

“NATO — NATO was delinquent. They were not paying their bills. They were not paying. A lot of states, as we discussed, they were not paying what they should be paying.”

Source: Joint press conference with Baltic presidents

in fact: NATO countries were not failing to pay their bills. Trump and others have criticized NATO members for falling short of the NATO guideline of each member country spending 2 per cent of its own GDP on defence. But that did not mean they had unpaid “bills” or any kind of debt, as Trump has repeatedly suggested.

Trump has repeated this claim 13 times

“I want to bring our troops back home. I want to start rebuilding our nation. We will have, as of three months ago, $7 trillion in the Middle East over the last 17 years.” And: “So I want to get back. I want to rebuild our nation. Think of it: $7 trillion over a 17-year period…”

Source: Joint press conference with Baltic presidents

in fact: There is no basis for the “$7 trillion” figure. During the 2016 campaign, Trump cited a $6 trillion estimate that appeared to be taken from a 2013 report from Brown University’s Costs of War Project. (That report estimated $2 trillion in costs up to that point but said the total could rise an additional $4 trillion by 2053.) Trump, however, used the $6 trillion as if it was a current 2016 figure. He later explained that since additional time has elapsed since the campaign, he believes the total is now $7 trillion. That is incorrect. The latest Brown report, issued in late 2017, put the current total at $4.3 trillion, and the total including estimated future costs at $5.6 trillion.

Trump has repeated this claim 17 times

“But we have to have strong borders. We need the wall. We’ve started building the wall.”

Source: Joint press conference with Baltic presidents

in fact: Trump has given various definitions of “the wall,” so we often cut him some slack in checking his claims about it, but it is false that the U.S. government has started building his wall. He seemed to be referring to a project in which a 2.25-mile stretch of existing wall in California is being replaced by a taller wall. That project was proposed in 2009, and the Los Angeles Times reported that Border Patrol spokesperson Jonathan Pacheco told reporters in March: “First and foremost, this isn’t Trump’s wall. This isn’t the infrastructure that Trump is trying to bring in. … This new wall replacement has absolutely nothing to do with the prototypes that were shown over in the San Diego area.”

Trump has repeated this claim 20 times

“Mexico — we have a trade deficit with Mexico of over $100 billion a year.”

Source: Joint press conference with Baltic presidents

in fact: Trump is off by at least $31 billion, or at least $29 billion if you give him the benefit of the doubt. The U.S. trade deficit with Mexico was $71 billion in 2017 when counting goods alone, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Including trade in services, the net deficit was $69 billion, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis said in a report released the week before Trump spoke. (The Bureau of Economic Analysis uses a different method of calculating deficits and surpluses than the Census Bureau.)

Trump has repeated this claim 34 times

“The United States, as you said, is paying 80 percent of the cost of NATO. Do you think that’s fair?”

Source: Remarks before working lunch with Baltic presidents

in fact: “Eighty per cent” is an exaggeration. According to NATO’s 2018 annual report, U.S. defence spending represented 72 per cent of the alliance’s total defence spending in 2017. With regard to direct contributions to NATO’s own common budget, the U.S. contributes a much smaller agreed-upon percentage: 22 per cent.

Trump has repeated this claim 14 times

“And again, NATO has taken in billions of dollars more because of me, because I said, ‘You’re delinquent, you’re not paying,’ to many of the countries. Is that right? Many of the countries weren’t paying. And even now, Germany is paying 1 per cent and they’re not even paying the full 1 per cent.”

Source: Remarks before working lunch with Baltic presidents

in fact: Germany spent 1.24 per cent of its gross domestic product on defence in 2017, according to NATO’s 2018 annual report. Definitions of “defence spending” differ, but it is not clear what Trump meant by “they’re not even paying the full 1 per cent.” (It is debatable how much credit Trump deserves for NATO countries’ recent increases in defence spending; 2017 was the third consecutive year of increases, and it followed 2014 pledge by member countries to spend more. While Trump is correct that he accused countries of being “delinquent” on NATO spending, they did not actually owe NATO money and were not actually behind on any NATO bills. They simply were not meeting the alliance target of each country spending 2 per cent of GDP on defence.)

“If you take a look at the oil and gas that we’re producing now — we’re independent, we’re now exporting oil and gas — this is not something that Russia wanted.”

Source: Remarks before working lunch with Baltic presidents

in fact: The U.S. has exported energy for decades — the U.S. government’s website includes oil-export data dating back to 1920 — so, taking Trump’s claim in the most literal way possible, it is false that the U.S. has just “now” become an exporter. What he was clearly suggesting, though, is that the U.S. has now become a net exporter of energy — exporting more than it imports. But that is also false; the U.S. government’s Energy Information Administration estimated in 2017 that it could happen around 2026. (It is true that U.S. exports have increased significantly in the Trump era to hit an all-time high, but this is not what Trump said.)

Trump has repeated this claim 9 times

“We cannot have people flowing into our country illegally, disappearing, and, by the way, never showing up to court. So the court case will be set for two years or three years, if you can believe this, and they never show up, for the most part. Very rarely do they show up.”

Source: Remarks before working lunch with Baltic presidents

in fact: It is not true that immigrants accused of unlawful entry “never” or “very rarely” show up for court. A 2017 report released by the Center for Immigration Studies, a think tank that advocates a hard line on illegal immigration, concluded that 37 per cent of people who were free pending trial did not show up for hearings over the past two decades. The author of the report, a former immigration judge, said the number was 39 per cent in 2016. In other words, even according to vehement opponents of illegal immigration, most unauthorized immigrants are showing up for court.

Trump has repeated this claim 10 times

“But we have a problem with China. They’ve created a trade deficit, and I really blame our representatives and, frankly, our preceding presidents for this. We have a trade deficit of $500 billion a year.” And: “But we have to do something to seriously relieve that trade deficit. We can’t have a $500 billion a year trade deficit.”

Source: Remarks before working lunch with Baltic presidents

in fact: Trump was off by $163 billion — and $125 billion if you give him the benefit of the doubt. The U.S. trade deficit with China was $375 billion in 2017 when counting goods alone, according the U.S. Census Bureau. Including trade in services, the net deficit was $337 billion, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis said earlier in the month. (The Bureau of Economic Analysis uses a different method of calculating deficits and surpluses than the Census Bureau.)

Trump has repeated this claim 51 times

  • Apr 4, 2018

“We are not in a trade war with China, that war was lost many years ago by the foolish, or incompetent, people who represented the U.S. Now we have a Trade Deficit of $500 Billion a year…”

Source: Twitter

in fact: Trump was off by $163 billion — and $125 billion if you give him the benefit of the doubt. The U.S. trade deficit with China was $375 billion in 2017 when counting goods alone, according the U.S. Census Bureau. Including trade in services, the net deficit was $337 billion, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis said earlier in the month. (The Bureau of Economic Analysis uses a different method of calculating deficits and surpluses than the Census Bureau.)

Trump has repeated this claim 51 times

“When you’re already $500 Billion DOWN, you can’t lose!”

Source: Twitter

in fact: Trump was inaccurately referring to the trade deficit with China. Specifically, he was off by $163 billion — and $125 billion if you give him the benefit of the doubt. The U.S. trade deficit with China was $375 billion in 2017 when counting goods alone, according the U.S. Census Bureau. Including trade in services, the net deficit was $337 billion, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis said earlier in the month. (The Bureau of Economic Analysis uses a different method of calculating deficits and surpluses than the Census Bureau.)

Trump has repeated this claim 51 times

  • Apr 5, 2018

“And a lot of them are moving back. Chrysler just announced they’re moving back into Michigan and many other car companies are expanding and building brand-new plants. That hasn’t happened for many years — for decades.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: It is not true that this is the first time in decades that automotive companies are moving manufacturing operations into the U.S. or expanding existing U.S. operations. While they have indeed announced major investments under Trump, they also announced major investments under Obama. In 2015, for example, Volvo announced that it would open its first U.S. car plant, in South Carolina. General Motors announced in 2013 that it would invest $1.2 billion to upgrade an Indiana truck plant. Ford announced in 2015 that it would invest $1.3 billion to upgrade a Kentucky truck plant. That same year, Ford shifted production of the Ford F-650 and F-750 medium-duty trucks from Mexico to a plant in Avon Lake, Ohio.

Trump has repeated this claim 7 times

“Tremendous amounts of money is coming, and basically billions and billions of dollars is being brought from offshore where big companies, small companies, they had money trapped outside of our country; they couldn’t get it in. And I think it’s going to end up being $4 trillion will come back in.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: Trump’s “$4 trillion” estimate for the amount of corporate profits parked overseas is unsupported by any experts. The U.S. Joint Committee on Taxation released an estimate of $2.6 trillion in August 2016, and experts said they were not aware of a massive jump in the following 12 months. An October 2017 report from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) also pegged the number at $2.6 trillion, while Goldman Sachs pegged it at $3.1 trillion the same month. “There’s no world in which it’s $4 trillion,” ITEP senior policy analyst Richard Phillips said in November 2017. “I do not know of anyone who increased the estimate so much recently,” Steven Rosenthal, a senior fellow at the Tax Policy Center, said in August 2017. “Like many things, I assume he made this up on the fly,” said another expert on the subject, who requested anonymity, when Trump made an estimate of $5 trillion in August.

Trump has repeated this claim 32 times

“If you look, Apple is going to spend $350 billion building plants in our country instead of the different places they have them.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: Trump is inaccurately describing Apple’s January announcement. While the company did announce a “$350 billion” figure, it did not say it would spend $350 billion building plants. Its press release made clear that the $350 billion would include not only new investment, which could conceivably include plants, but also pre-existing spending with suppliers and manufacturers: “Combining new investments and Apple’s current pace of spending with domestic suppliers and manufacturers — an estimated $55 billion for 2018 — Apple’s direct contribution to the US economy will be more than $350 billion over the next five years.” In other words, Apple’s pre-existing 2018 spending would have put it on track for $275 billion in spending over five years if maintained.

Trump has repeated this claim 20 times

“And, Shelley, this will be the last time — April — be the last time that you’re going to go that old-fashioned, big, lots of pages, complicated tax form. Because next April you’re going to, in many cases, one page, one card. It’s going to be very, very different. Very, very different. But you’ll have a nice, simple form next year. This will be the last year. So take pictures of it and enjoy it. This is the last time you’ll have to file a very complex and big tax form. It will be much easier starting next April.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: Trump’s tax law did not introduce a new, simpler form or postcard for tax-filing. Bloomberg reported: “Republicans had said before writing the law that they aimed to make taxes simple enough for many people to file a return on a postcard, but that didn’t happen. Other politicians in Trump’s party dropped the talking point.” The Associated Press reported: “There’s no sign that the IRS is planning new filing forms, card-sized or otherwise, for the 2018 tax year. As for the new one-page form that Trump said is coming, there already is one: the 1040EZ has been around for years. It can be used by people with less than $100,000 in taxable income and no dependents, and who meet other criteria.”

Trump has repeated this claim 2 times

“And I just want to congratulate the state of West Virginia because I am so proud of you. You were with me from day one. From day one. I mean, it was — no, you were with me from day one. There was never like, ‘Oh, gee, maybe it’s going to be close.’ And do you remember, at that beautiful arena — where’s the arena? Where was the arena, Shelley? At that beautiful — it probably held 7,000 people, and we had 20,000, 25,000 people that couldn’t get in.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: Trump was talking about his May 2016 rally in Charleston, West Virginia. He was wrong on both the size of the crowd in the arena and the size of the crowd outside. His “7,000” figure for the crowd inside the arena was a rare understatement: the capacity at Charleston’s Civic Center was more than 13,000, not 7,000. While there were some people outside the arena during the rally, there were not even close to 20,000 people unable to get in. The local paper, the Charleston Gazette-Mail, fact checked a similar Trump claim at the time: “Trump said there were 28,000 people in attendance, both inside and outside the rally. There almost certainly were not. The Civic Center holds 14,000, including the seats on the floor. It appeared to be about 95 per cent full. A Civic Center employee said the fire marshal’s count was 11,600.”

“A lot of times it doesn’t matter, because in many places, like California, the same person votes many times. You probably heard about that. They always like to say, ‘Oh, that’s a conspiracy theory.’ Not a conspiracy theory, folks. Millions and millions of people.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: There is simply no basis for the claim that millions of Californians voted multiple times.

Trump has repeated this claim 6 times

“And came in through chain migration. Or he (Sayfullo Saipov, accused of an October 2017 terrorist attack in Manhattan) might have also come in through a lottery. But he brought a lot of people with him. They say 22 people. Twenty-two people.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: We’ve let Trump get away with making this claim himself: while it is highly improbable, and many experts say impossible, that Saipov brought in 22 or more people through “chain migration” — Trump has sometimes said it was 23 people, sometimes 22 to 24 — we do not have hard evidence to disprove the claim. But it is false that “they say” 22 people came in. Trump is the person who has said this; other White House officials have been unwilling to back it up, and so have Trump’s appointees dealing with terrorism and immigration.

Trump has repeated this claim 6 times

“We had somebody on the West Side Highway, which I know very well — in Manhattan — he ran over — I think he killed about eight people. And they never mention the 12 people that have been horribly injured. You know, these are not people that have been a little bit hurt. You know, they’ll lose legs and arms, and they’re destroyed for life. Nobody ever says that. You know, they don’t say, 12 people were absolutely destroyed. A man goes out to run because he wants to keep himself in shape, and he ends up going home with no leg, no arm. And all he wanted to do was run. It’s a beautiful place along the Hudson River.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: Nobody lost both a leg and an arm in the attack, and no man lost either an arm or a leg. The Associated Press reported that one woman, a Belgian tourist, lost two legs. The commissioner of New York’s fire department offered corroboration, saying the attack led to one double amputation.

Trump has repeated this claim 4 times

“And remember my opening remarks at Trump Tower, when I opened. Everybody said, ‘Oh, he was so tough,’ and I used the word ‘rape.’ And yesterday, it came out where, this journey coming up, women are raped at levels that nobody has ever seen before. They don’t want to mention that.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: Trump’s third sentence, about women being raped on “this journey coming up,” suggested he was referring to a caravan of Central American asylum-seekers that he had been castigating tha same week. Adolfo Flores, a BuzzFeed reporter following the caravan, wrote on Twitter: “I’ve been with the caravan for 12 days and haven’t seen or heard of anyone being ‘raped at levels that nobody has ever seen before.’…To be clear I haven’t heard of anyone being raped in or around the caravan.” The New York Times reported: “Hours after Mr. Trump’s speech, Rodrigo Abeja, one of the caravan organizers, said he was unaware of any accusations of rape against the migrants. ‘You guys heard of a case?’ Mr. Abeja asked reporters in Matías Romero, Mexico. ‘Neither have we.'” It is possible that Trump was attempting to refer more generally to the dangers faced by female migrants travelling to the U.S. from Central America, but we believe it is most likely he was talking about the caravan.

“With us, it’s a lottery system — pick them out — a lottery system. You can imagine what those countries put into the system. They’re not putting their good ones.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: This is, as always, an inaccurate description of the Diversity Visa Lottery program. Contrary to Trump’s regular claim, foreign governments do not put the names of their problem citizens into the lottery to try to dump them on the United States. Would-be immigrants sign up on their own, as individuals, of their own free will.

Trump has repeated this claim 21 times

“This is our country. If you have a baby on our land, congratulations, that baby is a United States citizen. We’re the only one.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: The U.S. is far from the only country that offers “birthright citizenship” to anyone born on its land. Canada also has such a policy. So does Brazil, Venezuela, Jamaica, and more than two dozen other countries, though some of the laws vary slightly.

“We hire judges so that these people (unauthorized immigrants or asylum seekers) will come back. Now, they’re on the land. We release them. They go someplace into our country. They’re supposed to come back within two or three years for a court case, but nobody ever comes back. It’s bad enough to say, ‘Come back in three years.’ But nobody comes back anyway.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: It is not true that “nobody comes back” for their immigration court hearing. A 2017 report released by the Center for Immigration Studies, a think tank that advocates a hard line on illegal immigration, concluded that 37 per cent of people who were free pending trial did not show up for hearings over the past two decades. The author of the report, a former immigration judge, said the number was 39 per cent in 2016. In other words, even according to vehement opponents of illegal immigration, most unauthorized immigrants are indeed showing up for court.

Trump has repeated this claim 10 times

“Think of this: So we have a country where if they step one foot — not two feet — if one foot hits our country, we have to take those people gently, register them, and then release them. OK? We’re going to release them, essentially, in a short period of time. So we release them. And then they’re supposed to come for a court case. We hire more judges — we’re trying to hire thousands of judges. No other country in the world does it.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: Unauthorized immigrants caught crossing the border, or caught within 100 miles of the border within two weeks of arrival, can be deported immediately without putting them through a court process; Trump is wrong if he is saying these people must be registered, released and allowed a court hearing. Trump is wrong in a different way with regard to asylum seekers. Asylum seekers who express fear of persecution or torture if they are deported must be granted an interview with an asylum officer; if the officer determines that their fear is not “credible,” they can be deported. (They do have the right to ask an immigration judge to review the decision.) Here, Trump is wrong to suggest no other country has a system in which asylum claimants are released upon entry. Numerous countries have a similar process. In Canada, for example, claimants who arrive at the border are registered, interviewed and released — or, if officers are too overwhelmed with applicants at the moment, registered and promised an interview at a later date — then put into the Immigration and Refugee Board hearing process that will determine whether they are allowed to stay for the long term.

“We had a trade deficit of almost $500 billion last year with China.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: Trump was off by $163 billion — and $125 billion if you give him the benefit of the doubt. The U.S. trade deficit with China was $375 billion in 2017 when counting goods alone, according the U.S. Census Bureau. Including trade in services, the net deficit was $337 billion, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis said earlier in the month. (The Bureau of Economic Analysis uses a different method of calculating deficits and surpluses than the Census Bureau.)

Trump has repeated this claim 51 times

“One of the big things is our tax cuts. You know, they used to call it tax reform, and for 40 years they couldn’t pass anything and they didn’t know why. I said, ‘How’s it hard to pass tax cuts?’ Turned out it was not that hard. It was not easy. But we changed the name. I said, let’s — because being a person that’s only been doing this for two-and-a-half years, I said, ‘Don’t use the word “reform.” Use the word “tax cut.”‘ Because when you talk about tax reform, that could mean your taxes are going up. And your taxes went down. They went down a lot.”

Source: Remarks at West Virginia roundtable on tax reform

in fact: Trump is wrong even if he was only talking about his own party’s tax cuts. He again ignored the passage of George W. Bush’s major tax cuts, which were indeed billed as “tax cuts” rather than “tax reform.” He also exaggerated how long it had been since Reagan’s tax cuts: Reagan’s second major tax cut bill was signed in 1986, 32 years prior. That Reagan bill was successful although it was billed as “tax reform”: it was called the Tax Reform Act of 1986.

Trump has repeated this claim 11 times

 

Trump Is the Glue That Binds the Far Right

An analysis of 30,000 Twitter accounts provides a map of online extremists—and reveals that support for Trump is what holds them together.

October 29, 2018

by J.M. Berger

The Atlantic

Last week began with a wave of mail bombs sent to the enemies of President Donald Trump and ended with the massacre of 11 people at a synagogue in Pittsburgh. In between, a racially motivated shooter in Kentucky killed two African Americans. That incident received relatively little coverage, primarily because a locked door prevented the perpetrator from killing even more people at a nearby black church.

In the wake of these attacks, America collectively returned to the all-too-familiar ritual of crawling through each perpetrator’s paper trail and social-media footprint, looking for the ideological bread crumbs that might explain their actions.

Relatively little has emerged about the Kentucky murderer’s beliefs and motives, although his actions and words at the scene are clear enough to establish a racial basis for the attack. In Pittsburgh, the alleged killer was a committed neo-Nazi with a presence on gab.com, the alt-right social network. And the mail-bomb suspect, Cesar Sayoc, blazed a verbose trail on social media, not explicitly identifying himself with a specific extremist movement but invoking a host of conspiracy theories popular within the American far right.

All three investigations are in their early stages, and additional information may emerge that clarifies each perpetrator’s specific influences. But in many ways, there’s a clear common thread tying these incidents together. America is caught in a wave of radicalization being driven from the top, by the toxic rhetoric Trump blasts almost daily from the biggest pulpit in the world, the U.S. presidency. His casual invocations of violence and consistent demonization of his political enemies have opened the floodgates of hate in communities where anger has long simmered.

The landscape behind these attacks is complex, though. They emerge from a collection of far-right factions held in equipoise between cooperation and competition by their shared support for Trump. Understanding these factions can help shed light on what is happening, and what lies ahead for a fractured American body politic.

I recently analyzed about 30,000 Twitter accounts that self-identified as alt-right, or followed someone who did, for VOX-Pol, the European academic network studying extremism on social media. The results were illuminating.

The alt-right is often described as a movement or ideology. It is better understood as a political bloc that seeks to unify the activities of several different extremist movements or ideologies. While it is international in reach, its center of gravity can be found in the United States. Because the alt-right is a bloc, it has to be understood by mapping its components and analyzing how they overlap and how they differ. (Not everyone who associates with the bloc online self-identifies as alt-right.)

The alt-right is overwhelmingly white nationalist. The most influential account included in the data set of alt-right Twitter followers was that of Richard Spencer, the avowed white nationalist who coined the term alt-right. Six of the top-20 most influential accounts were owned by white nationalists on Twitter using their real names. (The VOX-Pol policy on social-media research discourages the publication of account handles.) Seven more were pseudonymous accounts tweeting primarily about white nationalism. The 12th-most-used hashtag (out of almost 220,000) was #whitegenocide.

But below the top 0.5 percent of users and themes, other metrics pointed to dissonance. A number of different types of nationalist and white-nationalist movements were represented in the network. While all white nationalists identify with white, not all identified with the same nation, which is one reason to prefer the term white nationalist to white supremacist in many cases. Many Dutch, Swedish, and Australian accounts were found in the network, as well as many accounts self-identified as white South Africans. These regional movements can have vastly different priorities and hot-button issues while still sharing core racist ideological elements.

Even within American circles, there were wide variations. Some movements were neo-Nazi or Nazi-nostalgic. Others were associated with the Ku Klux Klan. Many chose to try to camouflage their racism as “race realism,” while others were not concerned with subtlety. While these groups share white supremacy as a core belief, they call for very different tactical approaches and strategic outcomes (ranging from institutionalizing racial preferences to genocide). These differences have historically made it difficult for American white nationalists to cooperate with one another, something the alt-right umbrella tries to remedy, with mixed results.

There were also some very notable outliers among the most popular and influential users, whose status was difficult to square with the network’s strong overall orientation to white nationalism. Some of the most retweeted accounts were those of people of color with far-right views. Others were Jewish. Many of the users were people who have explicitly disavowed white nationalism, including some who have disavowed the alt-right label for its association with that movement. Some influential people were associated with the far-right edge of mainstream conservatism.

To fully understand the alt-right, it’s important to move past these competing patterns of belief and look at structural elements that cross ideological lines. This is where the alt-right finds its best opportunities for cohesion. Commonalities shared by a majority of the alt-right’s component movements included:

  • Opposition to immigration or Muslims: Anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim hate was endemic in the network, frequently paired with articles from anti-immigrant news sources, which ranked among the most tweeted and retweeted content. Aside from its cynical use as a rhetorical dodge against charges of racism, anti-immigrant rhetoric helped unite white nationalists with other nationalists who are not overtly concerned with race, including people of color who advanced anti-immigrant views and themes. Anti-Muslim bigotry was not always paired with anti-immigrant themes, but the two traveled together often enough to justify collapsing them into one category.
  • Conspiracy theories: Accounts for prominent conspiracy websites and their associated personalities ranked among the top influencers. QAnon, a far-right conspiracy theory, was the third-most-tweeted hashtag in the data set, although this ranking was exaggerated by coordinated tweeting activity by that theory’s adherents. An alternative-news ecosystem was shared by people with sometimes very divergent views.
  • Support for Trump: This, more than anything else, was the glue that held the alt-right social network together. Support for Trump was shared by virtually all parts of the network and was reflected in nearly every metric, including tabulations of the most-followed, most-retweeted, and most-influential accounts; the most-used words in Twitter profiles; and in the top two hashtags (#maga, which outperformed all other hashtags by a wide margin, and #trump).

The alt-right bloc synchronizes activity that starts on the far-right edge of mainstream conservatism and continues through the far reaches of genocidal white supremacy. There are common goals threaded through its various factions, including undermining the purveyors of real information about the world with a barrage of conspiratorial alternatives, eroding support for immigration within multiple demographic groups, and, most visibly, providing political support to Trump.

This provides the movement with an impact and a reach well in excess of what traditional white supremacy can now accomplish, even as it empowers the implementation of nationalist political policies.

This synchronization strategy has contributed to the accomplishment of tangible political goals, to at least some extent, most notably in relation to drumming up support for Trump administration policies and political strategies. But the alt-right umbrella has largely failed to “unite the right,” as seen in the anemic turnout at a recent Washington, D.C., white-nationalist rally.

Twitter is not a perfect proxy for the alt-right—many users, such as the Pittsburgh shooter, have moved to alternative platforms like Gab—but it provides a practical avenue to sketch out the contours of the movement. For each major cluster of users in the census data (as defined by their patterns of interaction with one another), I looked at the most common unique hashtags and words used in Twitter bios. In other words, after terms like MAGA and Trump, which dominated in almost every cluster, what terms indicated a clear ideological bent?

  • Neoreactionary: The largest distinct cluster of users, by a relatively narrow margin, consisted of neoreactionaries, often abbreviated NRx, a media-shy movement chiefly defined as antidemocratic and pro-autocracy, although like the alt-right itself, NRx encompasses a variety of views. Its chief ideologue claims that he is not a white nationalist, but that he is “not exactly allergic to the stuff.” Users in the data set were more international than other parts of the alt-right, with a significant Swedish presence and a focus on anti-immigrant content. The top hashtag was #NRx, and while some members of the movement disavow white nationalism directly, #whitegenocide ranked 13th out of more than 4,000 hashtags used in the cluster.
  • Neo-Nazi: The second-largest cluster consisted of people using neo-Nazi language and self-identifiers such as 14/88. Here, #whitegenocide was the top hashtag, #maga second, and #It’sOkayToBeWhite third.
  • Russian troll influenced: The third-largest cluster tweeted about Syria more than any other hashtag, with a secondary focus on anti-Semitic and anti-immigrant themes such as #StoptheCaravan. (The data we analyzed were collected earlier this year, so this was a reference to events in April rather than the current right-wing freak-out.) The prominence of Syria hashtags, disproportionately and uncontextually outperforming all other content, strongly suggests this group includes, or was influenced by, Russian-troll activity with respect to U.S. policy on Syria. Various segments of the U.S. far right have strong opinions about Syria, but pro-Assad hashtags in this group dramatically outperformed all others, including #maga. This group also included a significant number of users self-identifying as Identitarian, a European-leaning variant of white nationalism.
  • International white supremacy: Although American content prevailed in the network, several clusters reflected geographic nodes outside the United States. The largest of these was Australian, where there was no language barrier to inhibit the formation of social connections, but large clusters were also seen with concentrations in Sweden and the Netherlands. The U.K. was strongly represented in the data set, but users were spread among several different clusters, reflecting closer ideological and individual ties to the U.S. scene.
  • Christian white nationalists: While those in a subset of the NRx cluster identified themselves as Catholic, others in the same cluster identified themselves as atheist or claimed other religious affiliations. Additionally, the sixth-biggest cluster self-identified as either white nationalist or Christian, or both, in their Twitter profiles. This group was also more likely than any other to self-identify as alt-right. Content from this cluster was strongly pro-Trump and included a disproportionate number of Syria hashtags.
  • Shitposters: A significant cluster of users appeared to be shitposters—the term applies to people who troll for trolling’s sake, although they may also express ideological views (typically white nationalist). This group tweeted hashtags for #4chan and #8chan, as well as hashtags related to memes. A smaller cluster of users identified with Gamergate, and a significant number of those users employed neo-Nazi terminology.
  • Libertarians and anarchists: Self-described libertarians and anarchists made up one of the smaller clusters that was still large enough to be noteworthy. These users tweeted primarily about taxes and gun control.
  • The manosphere: Spread throughout the major clusters were users who identified with various forms of misogynist ideology, including a relatively small number of people self-identifying as incels. The largest of these was Men Going Their Own Way (or MGTOW), a movement opposed to feminism, whose members are encouraged to avoid marriage or serious relationships with women. A significant number of these users fraternized with white supremacists in other clusters or with Gamergaters.
  • Proud Boys: Only a handful of users in the data set self-identified as Proud Boys, and they were not strongly clustered. This suggests that the activity of the Proud Boys, a discreet organization ideologically similar to other alt-right factions, is more concentrated in its own social networks than in networks overlapping with people who identify as alt-right. However, the relatively small presence of Proud Boys in the data set may also reflect the group’s small size or other factors, such as a focus on operational security. (These data were collected before Twitter’s crackdown on the group.)

This array of factions complicates efforts to talk about the alt-right bloc as a unified entity or ideology, and it also complicates efforts to understand how people are taking inspiration from its activities.

While investigations are ongoing in all three of last week’s incidents, each terrorist appeared to take a different path toward violence. The alt-right bloc and the movements adjacent to it are just cohesive enough that those who enter their echo chamber can access an à la carte menu of ideological bullet points that are especially attractive to potential lone-actor terrorists. Adherents can pick and choose from a multitude of grievances and conspiracies originating with different ideological strains, and some will emerge with a set of beliefs and influences that may be hard to decipher.

This can be seen most clearly in the case of Sayoc, the suspect in the mail-bomb spree. Sayoc was prolific on social media, but so far his online activity shows a general right-wing orientation, a love of conspiracies, and a baffling claim of nonwhite ethnic identity, while some who knew him offline said he identified as a white supremacist. While more information is likely to emerge, which may change this assessment, Sayoc appears to have availed himself of the à la carte nature of the American far-right landscape, picking and choosing conspiracy theories and hyperpartisan opinions from wherever he encountered them, without locking himself into a specific ideology, except, perhaps, “Trump superfan.”

In the case of the deadly synagogue shooting on Saturday, the perpetrator was much more clearly involved with anti-Semitism and the alt-right, maintaining a presence on gab.com, the social network popular with alt-right users because of its relatively permissive environment. Many alt-right members, white nationalists, and other extremists relocated their social-media activity to Gab after being suspended on Twitter or Facebook. Reflecting the à la carte menu of influences available to him, the shooter was cool on Trump (finding him to be too friendly with Jews) but extremely hot on Trump’s rhetorical target du jour: the immigrant caravan, which has increasingly dominated the far-right ecosystem in recent days. Trump’s perseverations on the issue have created a feedback loop driving still more coverage, in both mainstream and alternative outlets. Whether or not the Pittsburgh shooter was a Trump fan, he was influenced by the consequences of Trump’s rhetoric.

In the case of the Kentucky shooter, little is known so far about his path to radicalization, although he appeared to target African Americans and had some history of violence against his African American ex-wife going back some years.

While these and other incidents over the past two years show variations in their ideological influences, the far-right as a whole has surged during this period, in both visibility and activity, including violence. Much of this increase can be attributed to the singular common element holding the bloc together—Trump.

It may be that the president lacks a detailed understanding of the factions he unites, although he surely understands that bigotry is crucial to his success. To him, these multifarious groups are simply a part of his “base.” His careful avoidance of further detail serves him well. By neglecting to embrace any one faction, he empowers them all.

With his nativist and anti-immigrant policies and rhetoric, Trump is the rising tide that lifts all boats in the sea of right-wing extremism. When he stokes fear about caravans of migrants invading the United States, when he promotes anti-Semitic conspiracy theories about George Soros, when he allows that white supremacists are “very fine people,” when he repeatedly invokes the language of white nationalists and prioritizes their policy preferences, when he demonizes the press as the “enemy of the people,” when he spins conspiracies to obscure his own questionable activities—in all these ways and more, he pours energy and coherence into a movement that might otherwise succumb to its well-established history of infighting.

Trump is holding the rickety structure of the alt-right together, for now and probably for the foreseeable future. When he eventually leaves the public eye, the tottering edifice of the American far right might tip and fall. But for as long as he remains on the scene, it is likely to hold together. And the longer he and his fellow travelers remain in political power, the more likely it is that a more cohesive far-right movement will survive beyond his presidency.

The alt-right contains multitudes. It is a coalition of factions, but it is also an arena. Its social ecosystem, and particularly its online component, provide a venue in which ideas can compete and adherents can flock to the ideological concepts that are most resonant and have staying power. As I have written previously, extremist movements are made up of discrete, identifiable elements, including a definition of identity, the description of a crisis affecting the extremists’ identity group, and a solution to the crisis that requires hostile action against an out-group. Within the alt-right, these elements are like a bag of Lego pieces: Participants in the movement can grab the ideas they like and combine them to create highly personalized ideologies, tailored to their individual preferences.

In addition to fueling lone actors, like those who emerged this week, there is a broader risk. Competition within the far-right arena could end with one cohesive faction rising to the top and consolidating a leadership role that can outlast Trump. Even more worrisome, a new and more potent ideology could be built from this collection of parts and find success with a wider segment of the population than the alt-right has been able to muster so far.

The end of Trump’s unchecked presidency, whether it comes through electoral, political, or constitutional means, will not solve this problem in the near term. In fact, it will probably further consolidate the far right around his personality and leadership, at least temporarily. Almost any imaginable circumstance under which Trump leaves office is likely to coincide with a wave of violence even greater than what we are currently experiencing. This has gone too far; there is no easy way back.

But there is no way back at all that leads through the status quo. The gravitational field of the presidency is unparalleled in U.S. culture—arguably unparalleled in the world. For as long as the center holds, the alt-right’s component parts and adjacent movements will continue to be drawn into Trump’s orbit, with an increasing sense of empowerment and license to act. Until the tide stops rising, their boats will continue to sail. The past week was just a taste of what that dystopian future could look like.

 

Trump, ‘purveyor of hate speech’, not welcome in Pittsburgh, says former synagogue leader

Lynette Lederman says she did not want the president to visit Pittsburgh, and would rely on local political leadership

October 29, 2019

by Oliver Laughland

The Guardian

A former president of the synagogue in Pittsburgh where 11 people were murdered on Saturday has said Donald Trump would not be welcome in the city and labelled the president a “purveyor of hate speech”.Lynette Lederman, of the Tree of Life Synagogue in Squirrel Hill, told CNN on Monday she would rely on local political leadership in the aftermath of the mass shooting and did not want the president to visit the city.

“We have people who stand by us, who believe in values – not just Jewish – but believe in values, and those are not the values of this president and I do not welcome him to Pittsburgh,” she said.

The comments followed an open letter signed by a coalition of local Jewish leaders and published by the Pittsburgh chapter of Bend The Arc, a progressive advocacy group, that also called for the president to avoid the city.

“President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you fully denounce white nationalism,” the letter states.

Trump, who labelled the shooting an “evil antisemitic attack”, has said he will visit but a trip has not yet been confirmed.

As the administration continues to face criticism over the president’s polarizing rhetoric in the aftermath of the Pittsburgh shooting and a series of attempted bombings against prominent Democrats and critics of Trump last week, Trump used Twitter again on Monday morning to label the media as “the true Enemy of the People”.

“There is great anger in our Country caused in part by inaccurate, and even fraudulent, reporting of the news. The Fake News Media, the true Enemy of the People, must stop the open & obvious hostility & report the news accurately & fairly,” Trump tweeted, shortly after Lederman spoke to CNN.

The 11 victims of the shooting were named as suspected gunman Robert Bowers was charged with 29 federal crimes, including 11 counts of murdering victims exercising their religious beliefs. The shooter, who traded gunfire with law enforcement officers during the massacre, was released from hospital on Monday and is expected in court later in the day .

The victims, eight men and three women, ranged in age from 54 to 97 and included a husband and wife, two brothers, professors, a dentist and a physician.

The Anti-Defamation League [ADL] said the shooting was the most deadly attack against Jewish people in America and came amid an increase in antisemitic attacks in the US. The ADL reported a 57% rise in reported incidents of antisemitic harassment and violence in 2017.

“We are seeing an environment in which antisemitism has moved from the margins to the mainstream as political candidates and people in public life literally repeat the rhetoric of white supremacists,” Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL chief executive, told ABC News on Sunday.

As the faith leadership in Squirrel Hill prepared funeral arrangements for those killed, the Tree of Life rabbi Jeffrey Myers told CNN on Monday he would welcome the president to the city.

“I don’t really foist blame upon any person,” Myers said. “Hate does not know religion, race, creed political party – it’s not a political issue in any way shape or form. Hate does not know any of those things, it exists in all people.”

He added: “The president of the United States is always welcome to come. I’m a citizen, he’s my president. He’s certainly welcome.”

A number of fundraising efforts have driven financial support to the grieving community. A crowdfunding campaign called Muslims Unite for Pittsburgh Synagogue has raised more than $90,000 while a fundraiser led by a graduate student in Washington had taken in nearly $545,000 by Monday morning.

Three congregations were conducting Sabbath services at Tree of Life when the attack began on Saturday morning. The shooter is accused of tearing through the building with an AR-15 assault style rifle and three handguns, shouting antisemitic slurs. He also appears to have posted antisemitic rants on social media shortly before the attack.

According to law enforcement officials speaking anonymously to the Associated Press, the suspect purchased all of his firearms legally and was licensed to carry firearms.

The suspect, who had worked as a long-haul trucker, injured six other people, including four police officers as they exchanged gunfire. He had no previous criminal record, authorities said.

 

 

The CIA Confessions: The Crowley Conversations

October 29, 2018

by Dr. Peter Janney

On October 8th, 2000, Robert Trumbull Crowley, once a leader of the CIA’s Clandestine Operations Division, died in a Washington hospital of heart failure and the end effects of Alzheimer’s Disease. Before the late Assistant Director Crowley was cold, Joseph Trento, a writer of light-weight books on the CIA, descended on Crowley’s widow at her town house on Cathedral Hill Drive in Washington and hauled away over fifty boxes of Crowley’s CIA files.

Once Trento had his new find secure in his house in Front Royal, Virginia, he called a well-known Washington fix lawyer with the news of his success in securing what the CIA had always considered to be a potential major embarrassment.

Three months before, on July 20th of that year, retired Marine Corps colonel William R. Corson, and an associate of Crowley, died of emphysema and lung cancer at a hospital in Bethesda, Md.

After Corson’s death, Trento and the well-known Washington fix-lawyer went to Corson’s bank, got into his safe deposit box and removed a manuscript entitled ‘Zipper.’ This manuscript, which dealt with Crowley’s involvement in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, vanished into a CIA burn-bag and the matter was considered to be closed forever.

The small group of CIA officials gathered at Trento’s house to search through the Crowley papers, looking for documents that must not become public. A few were found but, to their consternation, a significant number of files Crowley was known to have had in his possession had simply vanished.

When published material concerning the CIA’s actions against Kennedy became public in 2002, it was discovered to the CIA’s horror, that the missing documents had been sent by an increasingly erratic Crowley to another person and these missing papers included devastating material on the CIA’s activities in South East Asia to include drug running, money laundering and the maintenance of the notorious ‘Regional Interrogation Centers’ in Viet Nam and, worse still, the Zipper files proving the CIA’s active organization of the assassination of President John Kennedy..

A massive, preemptive disinformation campaign was readied, using government-friendly bloggers, CIA-paid “historians” and others, in the event that anything from this file ever surfaced. The best-laid plans often go astray and in this case, one of the compliant historians, a former government librarian who fancied himself a serious writer, began to tell his friends about the CIA plan to kill Kennedy and eventually, word of this began to leak out into the outside world.

The originals had vanished and an extensive search was conducted by the FBI and CIA operatives but without success. Crowley’s survivors, his aged wife and son, were interviewed extensively by the FBI and instructed to minimize any discussion of highly damaging CIA files that Crowley had, illegally, removed from Langley when he retired. Crowley had been a close friend of James Jesus Angleton, the CIA’s notorious head of Counterintelligence. When Angleton was sacked by DCI William Colby in December of 1974, Crowley and Angleton conspired to secretly remove Angleton’s most sensitive secret files out of the agency. Crowley did the same thing right before his own retirement, secretly removing thousands of pages of classified information that covered his entire agency career.

Known as “The Crow” within the agency, Robert T. Crowley joined the CIA at its inception and spent his entire career in the Directorate of Plans, also know as the “Department of Dirty Tricks,”: Crowley was one of the tallest man ever to work at the CIA. Born in 1924 and raised in Chicago, Crowley grew to six and a half feet when he entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in N.Y. as a cadet in 1943 in the class of 1946. He never graduated, having enlisted in the Army, serving in the Pacific during World War II. He retired from the Army Reserve in 1986 as a lieutenant colonel. According to a book he authored with his friend and colleague, William Corson, Crowley’s career included service in Military Intelligence and Naval Intelligence, before joining the CIA at its inception in 1947. His entire career at the agency was spent within the Directorate of Plans in covert operations. Before his retirement, Bob Crowley became assistant deputy director for operations, the second-in-command in the Clandestine Directorate of Operations.

Bob Crowley first contacted Gregory Douglas  in 1993  when he found out from John Costello that Douglas was about to publish his first book on Heinrich Mueller, the former head of the Gestapo who had become a secret, long-time asset to the CIA. Crowley contacted Douglas and they began a series of long and often very informative telephone conversations that lasted for four years. In 1996, Crowley told Douglas that he believed him to be the person that should ultimately tell Crowley’s story but only after Crowley’s death. Douglas, for his part, became so entranced with some of the material that Crowley began to share with him that he secretly began to record their conversations, later transcribing them word for word, planning to incorporate some, or all, of the material in later publications.

Conversation No. 76

Date:  Friday, April 11, 1997

Commenced: 7:15 PM CST

Concluded: 7:50 PM CST

GD: Good evening, Robert. Too late for you?

RTC: No, finished eating a bit ago and was just about to start a book on the Afghanistan business the Russians had. Not a problem.

GD: Your people armed the natives there.

RTC: Oh, yes, and the Russian helicopters fell from the heavens like leaves from trees in the fall.

GD: You created a Frankenstein’s monster there, Robert. Those tribesmen are deadly guerrilla fighters and when they’re not fighting invaders like Alexander the Great and the British, who knows who they might go after next? Well, history counts for nothing with those who do not understand it. I had some utterly mindless twit talking to me the other day and somehow they got off on out-of-body experiences. They were telling me about this Remote Viewing business and said the CIA had invented it.

RTC: My God, not that crap again, Gregory. Yes, we started it. You see, we got news that the Russians were working on psychic phenomena called psychotronics. The theory, and it was never more than that in my mind, was that an agent who was trained could give information about something hidden from physical observation while the so-called viewer was at a distance from the sought-after object. This was on my watch and was gathering steam about ’69 and into the ‘70’s. Let me see if I can…Gregory, give me a minutes of so and let me get into my files…

GD: Of course

(Pause)

RTC: Here we are. The first program was named SCANATE which,according to this, means scanning by coordinates and we started funding this utter idiocy in ’70.  We got a hold of SRI….

GD: Stanford Research Institute. It’s in Menlo Park, right up the road from me. It was built on Dibble Hospital of the Army. I remember Dibble from the wartime. We used to call it Dribble because they let the nuts out to walk around Menlo Park and piss on parked cars. Dribble. Charlie Burdick used to live in one of the reclaimed Army barracks when he was going to Stanford back in ’52. Sorry to digress, Robert. Please go on.

RTC: No problem, Gregory. We also used the services of Science Applications International Corporation in the same town. What do you know about SRI? As a local?

GD: I met some of their people when I worked at Stanford in the hospital. A bunch of drooling nuts if you asked me. Two of their top people ended up in the hospital’s psych ward. One kept hiding in the toilet, claiming someone was trying to get into his mind and the other just sat around talking to himself and wetting his pants. I remember the CIA’s taking over the hospital basement with that Filipino sailor with the plague…

RTC: Jesus Christ, Gregory, how did you find out about that? That’s a cosmic situation right there.

GD: Everyone on the pathology staff knew it. When the guy died, they came for the body in a special ambulance and there were armed guards all over the cellar and the loading ramp.

RTC: You ought not to talk about that.

GD: What were they doing? Developing something nasty for the Russians?

RTC: No, in this case, for the Red Chinese.

GD: Lovely. Never mind that. Go on about the nut fringe.

RTC: Gregory, I consider myself to be an intelligence agent with an Army background. I consider myself to be innovative enough but not interested in crazy stories about psychic powers. There are no psychic powers, Gregory, only psychos babbling away to themselves. Jesus, some of our people believed all of this. It started out costing about fifty thousand and went upwards from there. A number of us spent some time trying to persuade people like Dulles and Helms to abandon this nonsense, as well as the completely useless MK-Ultra programs that were draining our available funds and spending valuable time on things that did not work and could not work because they were based either on wishful thinking or downright fraud. They had all kinds of con men running around claiming that they were psychic and could see into KGB headquarters. SRI and the morons in the upper levels actually hired the American Institutes for Research crooks to work on some Stargate project in conjunction with the Army and in spite of a total absense of any kind of proof, they only discontinued their crap as late as ’95. I have boxes of gibberish on this. By God, Gregory, we spent twenty million on this fantasy crap before it stopped. McMahon was fascinated with this. He became Deputy Director before he fouled up and got the sack in’82.

GD: What happened to him?

RTC: Went to work for Lockheed Martin as a lobbyist. Poor John was another strange one. And Drs Gottleib and Cameron were two more crazies we paid millions to for the purpose of creating controlled agents…mind controlled that is…that we could use as assassins.

GD: Like the movie.

RTC: Exactly. They killed people by microwaving them, tossing them out of windows, giving them heart attacks and killing off all kind of failed experiments. Gottleib poisoned them and Cameron lured them out into the Canadian wilds and shot them in the head. My God, what raging idiots and not even the slightest successes. Millions wasted. Joe Trento lusts after these files, which I slipped out when I left, but I really don’t think Joe is capable of doing anything with them. If you want them, I’ll get my son to box them up and ship them to you. Could you use this?

GD: Love it.

RTC: Same address in Freeport?

GD: Absolutely. Many thanks in advance, Robert. I might have some trouble getting a publisher but I can work on it.

RTC: Well, we control most of the major publishers or if we don’t, they would never dare to put out anything that would get us upset. Hell, we have our man right there in the New York Times and they jump through the hoops, believe me. The Times is in our pocket absolutely. Of course for silence, we give them inside stories. Sometimes, Gregory, the stories are actually true. Can you believe that?

GD: Why not? I never believe anything I see in the press anyway. But what if the pin heads at Langley…no offense since you’ve left….if the pin heads get wind of this? Don’t tell Trento.

RTC: No. He’s like the rest of them. If he finds out I gave these to you, he’ll run to Langley and squeal like a pig. And do not, I repeat, do not tell either Kimmel or Bill. Kimmel would run to his bosses and Bill would hire a sound truck. Kimmel doesn’t like you at all but Bill has mixed feelings. No man can serve two masters, let alone nine or ten and poor Bill runs around, filled with self-importance and looking for a pat on the head.

GD:If he tries anything on me, I’ll give him something very hard on the head. Or through it.

RTC: Now, now, Gregory, violence is not the solution. If you want to get at either of them, feed them some disinformation and then when they run around chattering about it, in the end, they’ll make fools of themselves. Then, no one will believe them and you will have made your point.

GD: Poor Irving is hysterical about the Mueller book. Such a bad writer and a worse ideologue. That one has about run his course and one of these days, the loud-mouthed Jew will go too far and get nailed.

RTC: Is Irving a Jew?

GD: His mother was, so according to Jewish practice, David must be one as well. Well, I know some rabid Nazis, Robert and at least two of them are self-hating Jews. Well, they’re making money with it so God bless them. Yes, I can use anything you send me. That file on Critchfield is pure gold. If I ever published it, he would probably shoot at me but in Washington, people would point at him in the streets and laugh.

RTC: I wouldn’t weep over that but be careful with him. He has friends.

GD: Amazing. I take your point. Maybe he can catch a heart attack or get cancer. Look at what happened to Ruby. Got cancer right in the jail. That can be done, you know, by an injection. The heart attack we both know about. No trace at the post and off to the maggot buffet in a tin box. Better than shooting them at a play or tossing out the window like they did in the ‘40s, right?

RTC: Yes, a little subtlity is not a bad idea at times. Well, it will mean more room here for other things so I’ll see what else I have on these idiot games and see you get it.

GD: Oh, psychics are wonderful, Robert. If you pay them enough, they’ll see all kinds of brilliance in you.  People are such idiots. But still, when I want to really laugh, I read some of the material on the Kennedy business. Umbrellas, men in sewers and everything else. How much of that garbage did your people make up?

RTC: We have people still cranking it out but there are so many nuts out there that we really needn’t bother.

GD: Well, from what I read about the fantasy world of Dallas in ’63, most of the brilliant ones could get their haircuts in a pencil sharpener.

 

(Concluded at 7:50 PM CST)

 

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