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TSA releases alarming report on firearms discovered at airports

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 10:30 AM PST

Monday, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) released a stunning report of the number and types of firearms, ammunition and weapons confiscated at U.S. airports over the past year, including an average of nearly 11 firearms per day, with 84 percent of them loaded.

In their press release, the TSA noted that this is only a part of the story, and said there were far more dangerous weapons discovered over the past year than what they have summarized in this report, and said the number of firearms discovered in 2017 was up 17 percent from 2016.

In addition to firearms, hand grenades are often found in passenger’s carry-on and checked bags.  TSA may impose civil penalties of up to $13,066 per violation per person for prohibited items violations and violations of other TSA regulations. Repeat violations will result in higher penalties.

Below is an overall summary of items the TSA reported confiscating in 2017:

  • 771.5 million (771,556,886) passengers traveled securely through 440 federalized airports in 2017. That's over 2 million travelers a day!
  • A record setting 3,957, firearms were discovered in carry-on bags at checkpoints across the country, averaging 76.1 firearms per week. That's an average of 10.8 firearms per day.
  • 3,324 (84 percent) of the total firearms discovered were loaded.
  • 1,378 (34.8 percent) of the total firearms discovered had a round chambered.
  • The most firearms discovered in one-month – a whopping 31 – were discovered in August at the Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL).
  • Firearms were intercepted at a total of 239 airports.
  • There was a 16.7 percent (556 more) increase in firearm discoveries from 2016's total of 3,391.

Top 10 Airports For Firearm Discoveries In 2017:

  1. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL): 245 (222 Loaded)
  2. Dallas/Fort Worth International (DFW): 211 (165 Loaded)
  3. George Bush Intercontinental Airport – Houston (IAH): 142 (124 Loaded)
  4. Denver International (DEN): 118 (102 Loaded)
  5. Phoenix Sky Harbor International (PHX): 115 (109 Loaded)
  6. Tampa International (TPA): 97 (90 Loaded)
  7. Orlando International Airport (MCO): 94 (82 Loaded)
  8. Dallas Love Field (DAL): 93 (81 Loaded)
  9. Nashville International (BNA): 89 (71 Loaded)
  10. Seattle–Tacoma International Airport (SEA): 75 (60 Loaded)

Samples of hazardous items passengers had in their bags included the following:

  • A checked bag containing an ammunition box with three live ground burst simulators, two live M83 smoke grenades, and one inert practice grenade was discovered at the Palm Springs International Airport (PSP).
  • A live flashbang grenade was discovered in a carry-on bag at the San Diego International Airport (SAN).
  • A live smoke grenade was discovered in a carry-on bag at the Raleigh–Durham International Airport (RDU). Not only do smoke grenades deploy a thick blanket of smoke, they also burn extremely hot and are considered hazmat.
  • A one-pound bottle of gun powder was discovered in a checked bag at the Ketchikan International Airport (KTN). Gun powder is never permitted on an aircraft..
  • Five one-pound bottles of gun powder were discovered in a checked bag at the Boise Airport (BOI).
  • A ten-ounce container of gun powder was discovered in a checked bag at the Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC). While properly packed ammunition is allowed in checked bags, gun powder is strictly prohibited altogether.

A total of 198 prohibited items were deliberately hidden in attempts to sneak them through security in 2017. This is known as "artful concealment" and can lead to fines, arrests, and missed flights. Samples include:

  • A comb dagger was discovered in a carry-on bag at the Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ).
  • A knife was found concealed inside a stick of deodorant in a carry-on bag at the Bradley International Airport (BDL).
  • A stun gun disguised as a tube of lipstick was discovered in a carry-on bag at the Baltimore–Washington International Airport (BWI).
  • A sword cane was discovered in a traveler’s accessible property at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH).
  • A brush dagger was discovered in a carry-on bag at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH).
  • A stun cane was discovered in a traveler’s accessible property at the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX).
  • A lipstick knife was discovered in a carry-on bag at the Tulsa International Airport (TUL).

The post TSA releases alarming report on firearms discovered at airports appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Dem candidate uses Trump’s wall in new campaign ad (video)

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 09:37 AM PST

A new ad campaign released Monday by a Texas Democratic Congressional candidate slams President Donald J. Trump and the proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall, and vows to fight Trump’s agenda if he’s elected.

Democrat Jay Hulings’ ad declares that his top goal in Congress will be to fight against Trump regarding immigration, while focusing on education and job growth instead of “fear.”

In the ad, Hulings, a federal prosecutor, says: “Donald Trump wants 18 billion dollars for another border wall. No way. I’ve found the drug cartels, and put corrupt politicians from both parties in jail. We know what our families need, and it’s not fear, or walls. It’s education and jobs.”

Hulings ends with one final jab at the president, saying: “I approved this message because I’m running for Congress to stop Donald Trump from destroying the American dream.”

Hulings’ bid for Texas’s 23rd Congressional District pits him against Republican Rep. Will Hurd, who won a second term in the House in 2016. The district each man hopes to win contains the largest stretch of Mexican border in any congressional district, and has a high Hispanic population; therefore Trump’s immigration policies have been unpopular there, according to The Hill.

Hurd won the 2016 election by just over one percent of the vote, and Hulings’ ad is aimed at offering a replacement for Hurd, someone who will fight Trump. Yet Hurd is also critical of Trump’s border wall plan, and last year proposed that no physical barriers should be built at the border until the Department of Homeland Security presented its own plan to Congress.

At the time, Hurd said, "Each section of the border faces unique geographical, cultural, and technological challenges that would be best addressed with a flexible, sector-by-sector approach that empowers the agents on the ground with the resources they need."

The post Dem candidate uses Trump’s wall in new campaign ad (video) appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

GOP senator: Almost half of Mexico controlled by cartels (video)

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 08:45 AM PST

Monday, U.S. Sen. James Lankford compared the hold drug cartels have over Mexico to the control ISIS' previously had over Syria.

"Forty to 45 percent of Mexico is ungoverned or run by the cartels," Lankford revealed, after having spent three days meeting with Mexican and Central American leaders. "ISIS at its height in Syria controlled 50 to 60 percent. There are 15,000 fighters working for the cartels."

Speaking by telephone from Houston to Tulsa World, Lankford's comments highlighted the criminal side of border security at a time when most discussions focus on immigration. He pointed out how the proliferation of Mexican heroin and synthetic drug production is creating new interdiction challenges at the border.

"Four days ago, 100 pounds of fentanyl was seized coming into the U.S.," Lankford said, noting that the street value is vast, making it easy to smuggle. "This is an enormous amount of fentanyl."

As drug cartels fight each other for control amid a booming new drug trade, "we're seeing cartels that are more violent, and there are more of them," Lankford said.

The senator made stops in Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras during his brief trip, meeting with the presidents of the latter two countries. Lankford said their discussions centered on counter-narcotics efforts, law enforcement, immigration and trade, according to the report. He also met with Immigration and Customs Enforcement and U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials in Houston.

Lankford said he believes that Trump's latest proposal for not deporting "dreamers" — undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children — is a reasonable one.

Noting that chain migration is also referred to as “family reunification”, Lankford did acknowledge that many Americans do not believe dreamers should be given legal status that allows them to sponsor the people "who brought them here illegally in the first place."

The post GOP senator: Almost half of Mexico controlled by cartels (video) appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Sen. Grassley slams massive waste by Defense Dept

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 08:30 AM PST

Senator Chuck Grassely (R-Iowa), chairman of the Judiciary Committee, wrote an alarming op-ed in The Hill on Tuesday in which he reveals how the U.S. Department of Defense has misused, mismanaged and flat-out wasted taxpayer dollars.

Grassley noted that he has done extensive oversight work of the Defense Department for years, especially when it comes to U.S. forces in Afghanistan. He reveals the results of a recently-released audit of the now-defunct Task Force for Business and Stability Operations (TFBSO). The audit, conducted by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), the watchdog agency tasked with oversight of Afghanistan reconstruction operations, reveals “disturbing evidence of waste, potential fraud and abuse of taxpayer dollars.”

According to the audit’s results, one out of every five taxpayer dollars vanished without explanation. Grassley notes that the waste is indicative of “the breakdown of the Defense Department's internal controls.”

The audit also found that “nearly 50 percent of contracts were awarded non-competitively, meaning the DOD did not seek out alternative, cost-effective contractors that may have done higher quality work less expensively. Also, $35 million in contracts were awarded to firms employing former TFBSO senior staff members in executive roles, raising serious concerns about favoritism in contracting practices.”

Read Grassley’s full op-ed below, as published in The Hill:

I can't name a single person who likes having their money wasted. It's even worse if the careless spending of your money is done by someone else – particularly the federal government.

Every year, Americans dutifully pay their federal taxes. The United States government collects trillions of dollars for the purpose of funding essential functions, such as national security efforts and vital public services and programs. However, taxpayer dollars are often misused, misallocated and wasted. That has unfortunately been the case within one of the federal government's most essential agencies – the United States Department of Defense.

I've conducted extensive oversight work of the Defense Department for years, particularly and most recently regarding federal spending in Afghanistan. In many instances, U.S. projects aimed at rebuilding Afghanistan have been mismanaged and lack proper documentation. A number of those instances are outlined in a recently released audit of the now-defunct Task Force for Business and Stability Operations (TFBSO). The audit, conducted by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), the watchdog agency tasked with oversight of Afghanistan reconstruction operations, reveals disturbing evidence of waste, potential fraud and abuse of taxpayer dollars. 

The catalyst for the audit, which I called for in 2016 with former Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), was an alarming report that TFBSO spent nearly $43 million to build a gas station in Afghanistan as part of rebuilding operations. The Hill recently published an op-ed that specifically disputes the $43 million price tag, claiming instead that the direct cost to build the gas station was actually a little over $5 million. According to the SIGAR audit, that is factually correct but incomplete. The op-ed's author, Jeff Goodson, failed to acknowledge that in addition to the $5 million, TFBSO spent millions in massive overhead costs that were allocated to the project, pushing its total cost to just under $43 million. He also failed to realize the larger picture, which is that tens of millions of taxpayer dollars were wasted overseas with little to no return on investment for America.

The $43 million gas station wasn't the only egregious finding in the SIGAR audit. Congress appropriated $823 million for TFBSO projects. SIGAR auditors found rock-solid documentation for $435 million, leaving hundreds of millions of dollars unaccounted for. The financial discrepancy is due to careless bookkeeping and means American taxpayers may never know what happened to the rest of their money.

Goodson also pointed out that "the audit reports that 28 of the 35 Task Force projects – fully 80 percent… met some, all or most of their deliverable targets," meaning that one out of every five taxpayer dollars vanished without explanation. He further noted that while it's "not perfect," the overall results of Task Force projects in Afghanistan were "far from bad." 

Eighty percent is not an acceptable success rate for federally funded government projects. "Far from bad" is not an acceptable standard for federally funded government projects. Wasting one out of every five taxpayer dollars is not acceptable, and I think American taxpayers would agree.

As for the 80 percent of projects that "met some, all or most of their deliverable targets," it's important to note that the term "deliverable targets" does not necessarily mean projects were worthwhile or sustainable. According to the audit, only nine of the 35 projects started are still in operation. In my book, that is a 75 percent failure rate. Further, out of 124 contracts awarded by TFBSO, only 89 had complete files.

Another alarming finding is that nearly 50 percent of contracts were awarded noncompetitively, meaning the DOD did not seek out alternative, cost-effective contractors that may have done higher quality work less expensively. Also, $35 million in contracts were awarded to firms employing former TFBSO senior staff members in executive roles, raising serious concerns about favoritism in contracting practices.  

The information revealed in this audit is disturbing to say the least and is just one more example of the breakdown of the Defense Department's internal controls. SIGAR's findings highlights the need for DOD to provide accountability for its programs and personnel agency-wide and speaks to the fact that the DOD is the only federal agency that has failed to produce a clean audit. That's despite the Chief Financial Officers Act, a federal law Congress passed in 1990 requiring one from every agency.

The squandering of hundreds of millions of dollars in the name of Afghanistan reconstruction casts a cloud over the Department of Defense when America depends on it to spend every dollar as effectively and efficiently as possible for our military readiness and national security. The DOD needs to put an end to indefensible waste and abuse of the public trust. It has an obligation to assure the taxpaying public that its investments in our military are being protected. The SIGAR audit adds to the degradation of the public's confidence in the DOD's ability to manage federal money. The agency must take immediate steps to clean house, hold employees and contractors accountable and regain that confidence. 

Oversight, enforcement and transparency are vital tools to fight fraud and wasteful government spending. I will continue pressing the DOD to be the fiscal steward American taxpayers expect it to be, and to use its resources responsibly and for projects that benefit its core mission of defense and national security.

Grassley is chairman of the Judiciary Committee.

The post Sen. Grassley slams massive waste by Defense Dept appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Number of children found fighting for ISIS skyrockets

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 08:24 AM PST

In rapidly increasing numbers, hundreds of children are showing up on ISIS battlefields as others are discovered to acting as executioners and suicide bombers, according to a new report authored by the United Nations.

“U.N. officials have verified that hundreds of children kidnapped and recruited by ISIS have been found on the battlefield after being trained in fighting centers set up in war torn Syria and other locales,” according to an article in the Washington Free Beacon on Monday.

Even children as young as seven years old have been reportedly fighting on the battlefield, marking a “significant increase” over previous years, according to the U.N. report, which includes evidence of video footage showing children executioners killing on ISIS’s behalf.

Radical terror groups, including ISIS and Boko Haram in Nigeria, are stepping up their abuse and exploitation of children, as they wage war and plot terror events throughout the world.

“In 2015 alone, the United Nations verified 274 cases of children having been recruited by Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in the Syrian Arab Republic,” according to the report. “The United Nations verified the existence of centres in rural Aleppo, Dayr al-Zawr and rural Raqqah that provided military training to at least 124 boys between 10 and 15 years of age.”

“Verification of the use of children as foreign fighters has increased significantly, with 18 cases involving children as young as 7 years of age,” the U.N. found. “The use of children as child executioners was reported and appeared in video footage. In Iraq, in two incidents in June and September 2015, more than 1,000 children were reportedly abducted by ISIL from Mosul district.”

And since the U.N. kept its estimates conservative, this means that the actual number of children being kidnapped, exploited, and used on the battlefield is likely much greater.

“While the lack of access to areas in conflict undercuts the possibility to gather precise data, it is known that recruited children were used to act as spies and scouts, to transport military supplies and equipment, to conduct patrols, to man checkpoints, to videotape attacks for propaganda purposes and to plant explosive devices, as well as to actively engage in attacks or combat situations,” according to the report.

“Some boys and girls were increasingly being used as human shields and to detonate bombs,” the U.N. found. “In May 2015, for example, a girl about 12 years old was used to detonate a bomb at a bus station in Damaturu, Yobe State, killing seven people. Similar incidents were reported in Cameroon and the Niger.”

Not all children fighting on behalf of these organizations were kidnapped and forced onto the battlefield. At least a portion were found to have migrated from their home countries, including some in Europe, to join these radical groups.

The number of those children joining of their own accord is on the upswing, according to the U.N.

“More and more children are travelling from their State of residence to areas controlled by terrorist and violent extremist groups, in order to join them,” the report found.

The post Number of children found fighting for ISIS skyrockets appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

REPORT: Ousted FBI deputy director’s pension analyzed

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 08:11 AM PST

FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe can expect to receive a nearly $2 million pension, according to a Washington Free Beacon analysis.

Amid growing scrutiny for the way he handled the agency’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server, McCabe stepped down from his role on Monday, taking early retirement. After serving at the bureau for more than 20 years, it turns out that he can expect an annual pension of $55,230; placing its lifetime value at a total worth of approximately $1.8 million.

McCabe joined the FBI in 1996 and worked his way up to high-paying executive service positions, the Free Beacon explained. He went from assistant director in charge of the Washington, D.C., field office until July 2015, and then he was named the FBI’s associate deputy director, which has a higher pay scale.

According to the report:

The Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) calls for law enforcement officers to receive 1.7 percent of the officer’s average highest salary over a period of three consecutive years per year for the agent’s first 20 years of service. Additionally, they receive 1 percent of the highest average salary for each year exceeding 20 years of service. McCabe served 21 years.

At executive and senior pay levels, McCabe’s average highest salary is estimated at $157,800, taken from his various roles at the FBI between 2015 and 2017. The estimate is based on executive service pay levels compiled by FederalPay, a public resource that uses data from the General Services Administration and the Office of Personnel Management.

In 2015, McCabe received roughly $151,200, after reaching the higher ES Level 4 salary in July after being named associate deputy director. McCabe received $160,300 in 2016, after James Comey appointed him deputy director. In 2017, remaining in an ES Level 4 position, he received $161,900.

By multiplying McCabe’s highest average salary of $157,800 by 1.7 percent, for each of his first 20 years of service, he receives an annual $53,652 pension. He receives an additional 1 percent for one year of service, having served since 1996. This gives McCabe an additional $1,578, giving him an annual pension of $55,230.

The Office of Personnel Management has set the average life span of law enforcement officers at nearly 83 years. The lifetime value of McCabe’s pension is estimated at $1.8 million.

McCabe is 49, though he likely had enough paid vacation days saved up to step down before his 50th birthday, the age requirement for those taking early retirement with at least 20 years of service.

As a law enforcement officer, McCabe is also eligible for a cost-of-living adjustment on top of his pension.

McCabe has been at the center of controversy over leadership at the FBI since before the 2016 presidential election, when the Wall Street Journal revealed his wife received more than $600,000 for her failed Virginia state senate campaign from political groups tied to Terry McAuliffe, a long-standing ally of Hillary Clinton. McCabe oversaw the investigation into Clinton’s misuse of classified information.

McCabe received the statement drafted by Comey exonerating Clinton months before she was ever interviewed for the investigation. He was also referenced in text messages between Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, the anti-Trump FBI officials who discussed an “insurance policy” if Trump won the presidential election.

The post REPORT: Ousted FBI deputy director’s pension analyzed appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Former HGTV star arrested for child molestation

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 07:49 AM PST

A former HGTV star has been arrested for allegations that he molested a 10-year-old girl who attended a sleepover at his home.

In response to an active warrant, Christopher J. Dionne turned himself in to authorities in Connecticut on Monday. Dionne is charged with fourth-degree sexual assault and risk of injury to a minor following allegations by the girl that he touched her inappropriately while she attending a November sleepover.

According to the Daily Mail, Dionne is being held in lieu of $100,000 bond.

In 2015, Dionne and his identical twin brother starred in the HGTV series "Family Flip" where they flipped houses using reclaimed materials and sold them. HGTV did not pick up the series, but the brothers have continued their business and were working on a new television series for A&E.

The alleged incident occurred during a sleepover hosted at Dionne’s home. The victim reported that she was sleeping on the couch and awoke to the assault by Dionne, who allegedly touched her buttocks and chest beneath her clothes.

Dionne reportedly touched the girl, left the room and returned shortly to molest her again. The victim claimed that Dionne used lewd comments during the assault, then instructed her not to tell anyone or else he would go to jail and his daughter would not have a dad. According to the complaint, his son and daughter were asleep in the same room at the time of the assault.

Dionne eventually went to sleep in his bed with his wife, the victim said.

Although Dionne denied the accusations in an interview with police, he acknowledged having had an unusual encounter with the girl after he returned home from a bar. Dionne claimed that the girl was awake when he came home, so he sat with her and she started rubbing his stomach. He contended that he told the girl that her actions were “inappropriate” and rubbed her back after she began to cry.

The victim also claimed that Dionne had made sexually explicit comments to her in September, which he also denied.

A&E has suspended production of the show on which the Dionne brothers were working.

Dan Silberman, senior vice president of communications for A&E and HISTORY, released the following statement: “In light of the allegations which just came to light, we are suspending production on the series.”

The post Former HGTV star arrested for child molestation appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

US releases sweeping list of Russian politicians, oligarchs (video)

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 07:47 AM PST

Russian businessmen and officials who have flourished under Vladimir Putin's presidency are listed in a document ordered by Congress as a part of the Russian probe. The U.S. has released the names of 114 Russian politicians released just before a Monday evening deadline. It includes Putin's entire administration, as listed by the Kremlin on its website, plus the Russian cabinet, all top law enforcement officials and chief executives of the main state-controlled companies.

According to the Associated Press, a companion list of 96 "oligarchs" on the come from a Forbes magazine ranking of Russian billionaires.

Wealthy Russians have been fearing that the published list could lead to U.S. sanctions or those on it being informally blacklisted in the global financial system.

In a surprise move, the U.S. announced that no one on the list would be punished under the new sanctions, at least for now.

Officials said more names, including those of less-senior politicians and businesspeople worth less than $1 billion, are on a classified version of the list being provided to Congress. Drawing on U.S. intelligence, the Treasury Department also finalized a classified list of at least partially state-owned companies in Russia, which has been sent only to Congress.

The goal of the seven-page unclassified document, as envisioned by Congress, was to name-and-shame those believed to be benefiting from Putin's tenure, as the United States works to isolate his government diplomatically and economically, according to the report.

Every top Russian official except for Putin is on the list of 114 senior political figures. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev is on it, along with all ministers from the Russian government, all 42 of Putin's aides, and top law enforcement officials. The CEOs of all major state-owned companies, including energy giant Rosneft and Sberbank, are also on the list.

The oligarchs list includes tycoons Roman Abramovich and Mikhail Prokhorov, who challenged Putin in the 2012 election. Aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska, a figure in the Russia investigation over his ties to former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, is included.

Less obvious names on the list include Sergei Galitsky, founder of retail chain Magnit, and Arkady Volozh, founder and CEO of the search engine Yandex, and bankers Oleg Tinkov and Ruben Vardanyan. They have been lauded as self-made men who built their successful businesses without any government support.

Some billionaires on the list have fallen out with the Kremlin entirely, like the Ananyev brothers, who fled the country last year and vowed to sue the Russian government after their bank was declared bankrupt.

Dubbed the "Putin list," it shows that the United States views the entire Russian government as enemies, according to Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov (himself on the list).

Although he said Russia should not "give in to emotions" before studying the list and its implications carefully, Peskov pointed out the name of the law: "On countering America's adversaries through sanctions."

"De facto everyone has been called an adversary of the United States," he said.

Companies or foreign governments that had been doing business with blacklisted Russian entities had been given a three-month grace period to extricate themselves from transactions, starting in October when the blacklist was published and ending Monday. But only those engaged in "significant transactions" are to be punished, and the United States has never defined that term or given a dollar figure. That ambiguity has made it impossible for the public to know exactly what is and isn't permissible.

The post US releases sweeping list of Russian politicians, oligarchs (video) appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Tech giants support immigration bill that undercuts American college graduates

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 07:44 AM PST

U.S. business groups are backing a recently introduced Senate bill that would allow companies to import an unlimited number of government-subsidized, foreign graduates to replace American employees.

According to business lobbyists, the legislation would address a supposed shortage of tech workers, although critics argue that the bill would have a wider impact on the employment outlook for Americans, Breitbart News reported.

Mark Krikorian, director of the Center for Immigration Studies, contended that tech-trained workers are "not a hermetically segregated population."

"I have one kid in computers and another one in medical school … [and] everybody has family members who are involved in [technology] fields, so it affects everybody even if what you are doing is unrelated" to cutting-edge technology, Krikorian said. He also noted that Americans who lose jobs in the tech sector due to the influx of low-salaried immigrants will crowd into other fields and drive salaries downward.

The complex bill, titled the Immigration Innovation Act of 2018 and familiarly known as I-squared, is sponsored by Sen. Orrin Hatch, R.-Utah, and Sen. Jeff Flake, R.-Ariz., who might attempt to attach the measure to the pending amnesty and immigration bills.

Businesses, including tech giants Microsoft and Facebook, fully support the legislation and were quoted in a news release by Hatch and Flake.

"Our future – and the competitiveness of the entire US tech sector – requires that we recruit some of the best and brightest in the world … ensuring that we can recruit people to fill jobs here in the US," read a statement from Brad Smith, president of Microsoft.

Erin Egan, vice president of public policy at Facebook said regarding the legislation, "Facebook is pleased … we look forward to working to ensure its passage into law."

The trend toward outsourcing labor to foreigners is already exacerbated by rules in several states which allow illegal aliens to work as certified professionals, such as lawyers, teachers, doctors, security guards, and therapists.

Last week, Sen. Cory Booker, D.-N.J., lauded an illegal alien “Dreamer” who was admitted into the New Jersey and Pennsylvania Bar Associations.

Passage of the Immigration Innovation Act of 2018 would permit more workers into the United States who are willing to work for lower wages. Existing programs currently provide work visas for approximately 2 million foreign guest workers who now hold college-graduate-level jobs in America.

The post Tech giants support immigration bill that undercuts American college graduates appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

CNN analyst compares Trump to Hitler in revised Holocaust poem

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 07:40 AM PST

Following the removal of Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe, CNN analyst Ana Navarro sparked a firestorm of criticism Monday by revising a famous Holocaust poem to draw a comparison between alleged actions by President Donald Trump and those of Hitler.

In a Monday evening tweet, Navarro, a Republican, reworded anti-Nazi pastor Martin Niemöller's poem "First they came…" that chastized the Germans for not speaking out as Adolf Hitler rose to power and killed millions of Jewish people.

"First, he came for Comey, & they didn't speak out b/c they were Trump apologists," Navarro tweeted. "Then, he came for McCabe, & they didn't speak out b/c they were Trump apologists. Next, he'll come for Rosenstein & they won't speak out b/c they're Trump apologists. Last, he'll come for Mueller…"

Many criticized Navarro's revision of the poem, and warned her to be careful of Holocaust comparisons.

"Stop belittling the Holocaust with your stupid Nazi analogies," tweeted David Harsanyi, a senior editor at The Federalist. Haley Byrd, a reporter at The Weekly Standard tweeted, "A good rule of thumb is to not compare things that are not the Holocaust to the Holocaust."

In 2015, Navarro herself advised others to "always, always stay away from Holocaust and rape similes, jokes and metaphors. No comparison. Never quite ends well."

Navarro’s tweet followed reports that McCabe had been "removed" from his post as deputy director of the FBI. White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said on Monday that Trump was not involved in the decision to remove McCabe, but that the president continued to stand behind his past criticism of McCabe.

The post CNN analyst compares Trump to Hitler in revised Holocaust poem appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Angel dad speaks out about ‘treasonous’ amnesty plan (video)

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 07:24 AM PST

"There are the types of stories that CNN is never going to tell, neither is MSNBC or any of the other mainstream media outlets," said Angel Dad Dan Golvach of the 2015 murder of his 25-year-old son by an illegal alien who had previously been deported and convicted of crimes in the U.S.

Golvach joined Breitbart News' Editor-in-Chief Alex Marlow on Monday for an interview on SiriusXM's Breitbart News Daily.

The grieving father pointed out that mainstream news media outlets, such as CNN and MSNBC, align with Democrats in demanding amnesty for illegal aliens, but they all but ignore Angel Families and the widespread consequences of illegal immigration.

"We have the whole of the Democratic Party — along with the Republican defectors — that are in both houses that have decided to put the interests and health and well-being of foreign invaders … ahead of American families," said Golvach. "Do you think any of these Democrats or these bleeding hearts are going to put up one of their own kids as an offering, as a sacrifice to this agenda of theirs? No. It's easy to sacrifice mine. … It's just treasonous, and I'm sick of it. I'm sick and tired of Americans not being even mentioned in the mix."

Golvach accused politicians of facilitating the status quo of illegal immigration. "I will never forgive the politicians that have blood on their hands that have ushered this is on us. It's not acceptable. I find it to be treasonous. I think they're traitors," he said.

"They keep this border open because it's either conducive to importing future votes or keeping their cheap illegal labor donors happy. In my estimation, it's treasonous. There's a social contract between us and our government, and they have breached it. It's not lawful, and it cost me my son's life. It's cost a lot of families their loved ones,” said Golvach, adding, "This is life or death for our country."

Trump made a promise to Angel Families, said Golvach. "I've been in the room on numerous occasions with Donald Trump, when he was both a candidate and president. I've been the White House, and he promised us — the families that I was with that either lost kids or loved ones — he said, 'Your loved ones' deaths will not be in vain.' He was unambiguous about this. He told us, 'No amnesty. Period.' This is not what we were sold," said Golvach.

"We're tired of this," said Golvach. "We're sick of it. We want the border secured. We want that border secure. It's a terrible idea to any kind of amnesty without that border being secured. … Any sort of amnesty is rewarding those that thumb their noses at our immigration laws. It is not what we voted for."

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REPORT: Drug companies flooded one town with millions of opioids (video)

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 07:16 AM PST

One tiny West Virginia town has been identified as having fueled the opioid crisis in that region through two pharmacies that took in deliveries of nearly 21 million prescription painkillers in just the past decade.

According to Fox News, a congressional committee investigating the opioid crisis has discovered that between 2006 and 2016, out-of-state drug wholesalers shipped 10.2 million hydrocodone pills and 10.6 million oxycodone pills to Tug Valley Pharmacy and Hurley Drug in the town of Williamson, in Mingo County, the Charleston Gazette-Mail reported.

Williamson has a population of just 2,900 people.

"These numbers are outrageous, and we will get to the bottom of how this destruction was able to be unleashed across West Virginia," the House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Greg Walden, R-Ore. and ranking member Frank Pallone Jr., D-N.J. said in a joint statement.

West Virginia has seen a shocking amount of its residents die from drug overdose, tearing apart families and putting communities in a state of emergency amid escalating crime and a deteriorating society.

Drug wholesalers Miami-Luken and H.D. Smith have until February 9 to respond to questions from the congressional committee and provide relevant documents detailing what measures, if any, they took to end the flood of pain pills into the state.

H.D. Smith also distributed 3,000 pain pills a day in 2008 to Family Discount Pharmacy in another West Virginia town, population 1,800. The committee said it was a 10-fold increase compared to 2007, the newspaper reported.

H.D. Smith said Monday in a statement, "H.D. Smith works with its upstream manufacturing and downstream pharmacy partners to guard the integrity of the supply chain, and to improve patient outcomes.”

Ohio-based Miami-Luken reportedly sold 6.4 million hydrocodone and oxycodone pills to Tug Valley Pharmacy between 2008 and 2015, the company told the panel. In 2008, the company's shipments to the town tripled compared to the previous year.

Miami-Luken also provided 5.7 million hydrocodone and oxycodone pills to the Mingo County town of Kermit with 400 people, the report said. In 2008 alone, the company was responsible for over five thousand pain pills for every person in town.

Both companies have recently settled with West Virginia over allegations of flooding the state with painkillers. Miami-Luken agreed to pay $2.5 million in 2016 while H.D. Smith paid the state $3.5 million, the Gazette-Mail reported.

"We will continue to investigate these distributors' shipments of large quantities of powerful opioids across West Virginia, including what seems to be a shocking lack of oversight over their distribution practices," the lawmakers' statement said.

According to a Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland study, the nationwide rate of deaths from opioid overdoses was about 10 per 100,000 people, but West Virginia is leading the way with 35 deaths per 100,000 people. At least 880 people died in West Virginia in 2016 as a result of overdoses.

"The committee's bipartisan investigation continues to identify systemic issues with the inordinate number of opioids distributed to small town pharmacies," the lawmakers said in the statement. "The volume appears to be far in excess of the number of opioids that a pharmacy in that local area would be expected to receive."

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Three corporate giants join forces to launch independent healthcare system

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 07:08 AM PST

U.S. employees of Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase might soon be seeing improvements in the costs of their healthcare and upgrades in health-related services, due to a new partnership between the three corporate giants announced on Tuesday.

The three companies, which collectively employ more than 1.1 million workers, will establish an independent firm which will initially seek technological solutions to simplify the healthcare system. The aim is to ultimately create an umbrella corporation that would be “free from profit-making incentives.”

Principals of each firm said that they are currently uncertain how the new enterprise will work, yet they are hoping that the sheer size of their companies will provide the necessary scale and resources to successfully address the issue, CNBC reported.

“The ballooning costs of healthcare act as a hungry tapeworm on the American economy,” Berkshire CEO Warren Buffett said in a statement. “Our group does not come to this problem with answers. But we also do not accept it as inevitable. Rather, we share the belief that putting our collective resources behind the country’s best talent can, in time, check the rise in health costs while concurrently enhancing patient satisfaction and outcomes.”

A team of top executives from each company will lead the project and be comprised of investment officer Todd Combs at Berkshire, Marvelle Sullivan Berchtold at J.P. Morgan Chase and Beth Galetti, a senior vice president at Amazon.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos remarked on the complexity of the U.S. healthcare system, saying, “We enter into this challenge open-eyed about the degree of difficulty. Hard as it might be, reducing healthcare’s burden on the economy while improving outcomes for employees and their families would be worth the effort.”

Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase contended, “Our people want transparency, knowledge and control when it comes to managing their healthcare. The three of our companies have extraordinary resources, and our goal is to create solutions that benefit our U.S. employees, their families and, potentially, all Americans.”

Calling the endeavor “good news,” Allergan CEO Brent Saunders said, “The health-care delivery system is antiquated and in dire need of positive disruption. My hope is these three companies light the spark!”

Adam Fein, president of Pembroke Consulting, asserted that it is “long past time” for employers to force the healthcare system to innovate.

“For better or worse, there are warped incentives baked into every aspect of the U.S. healthcare system, from medical innovation to care delivery to insurance and benefit management,” Fein said.

Analysts agreed that change is overdue in the healthcare system.

“If this winds up being the low cost provider to make insurance more affordable at employer level, it could wind up being a real disruptive competitor to an industry that has not seen any new players in years/decades,” said Jefferies analyst Jared Holz.

Following is the full news release:

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN), Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK.A, BRK.B) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) announced today that they are partnering on ways to address healthcare for their U.S. employees, with the aim of improving employee satisfaction and reducing costs. The three companies, which bring their scale and complementary expertise to this long-term effort, will pursue this objective through an independent company that is free from profit-making incentives and constraints. The initial focus of the new company will be on technology solutions that will provide U.S. employees and their families with simplified, high-quality and transparent healthcare at a reasonable cost.

Tackling the enormous challenges of healthcare and harnessing its full benefits are among the greatest issues facing society today. By bringing together three of the world’s leading organizations into this new and innovative construct, the group hopes to draw on its combined capabilities and resources to take a fresh approach to these critical matters.

“The ballooning costs of healthcare act as a hungry tapeworm on the American economy. Our group does not come to this problem with answers. But we also do not accept it as inevitable. Rather, we share the belief that putting our collective resources behind the country’s best talent can, in time, check the rise in health costs while concurrently enhancing patient satisfaction and outcomes,” said Berkshire Hathaway Chairman and CEO, Warren Buffett.

“The healthcare system is complex, and we enter into this challenge open-eyed about the degree of difficulty,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO. “Hard as it might be, reducing healthcare’s burden on the economy while improving outcomes for employees and their families would be worth the effort. Success is going to require talented experts, a beginner’s mind, and a long-term orientation.”

“Our people want transparency, knowledge and control when it comes to managing their healthcare,” said Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase. “The three of our companies have extraordinary resources, and our goal is to create solutions that benefit our U.S. employees, their families and, potentially, all Americans,” he added.

The effort announced today is in its early planning stages, with the initial formation of the company jointly spearheaded by Todd Combs, an investment officer of Berkshire Hathaway; Marvelle Sullivan Berchtold, a Managing Director of JPMorgan Chase; and Beth Galetti, a Senior Vice President at Amazon. The longer-term management team, headquarters location and key operational details will be communicated in due course.

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Over 70 illegals discovered packed inside semi-trailer by border agents (photo)

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 06:41 AM PST

A new report from Texas claims that over 70 illegal immigrants were discovered by border patrol officials as they were attempting to be smuggled into the U.S.

The immigrants were found in a tractor-trailer near Laredo, Texas.

The New York Post reports the following:

“Border control agents pulled over a tractor-trailer in Texas and found more than 75 undocumented immigrants stuffed inside the box-like enclosure, officials said.

The truck was traveling on highway 83 near Laredo last Friday when the driver was pulled over and questioned about his immigration status, according to the US Customs and Border Control.

The truck was subjected to a secondary inspection when 76 immigrants from Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala were found inside. Thirteen of the immigrants were children not accompanied by adults.”

According to the Border Patrol press release, the driver, a United States Citizen, was arrested and the tractor-trailer was seized by Border Patrol.

"These criminal organizations view these individuals as mere commodities without regard for their safety.  The blatant disregard for human life will not be tolerated. We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to disrupt and dismantle these organizations and prosecute those responsible," said Laredo Sector Assistant Chief Patrol Agent Gabriel Acosta.

Photo credit: U.S. Border Patrol

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DML: I Respond to Some Interesting Emails You Sent Me

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 06:30 AM PST

Each day I receive a wave of comments and message, and today I respond to some of them like I do every day.

To send me a message, use the submit news button DennisMichaelLynch.com

FROM LORRAINE
Just donated $50 – don’t bother to send a gift.   If someone would like it, send to them.   Thanks for all you do DML and Family.

DML: Thank you for the generosity.  The Facebook censorship has hit a new high as our ability to reach our audience is now at a new low.  The GREAT NEWS is that last night I spend an hour speaking with a developer who has a product much like Facebook which has been tested and implemented on numerous websites overseas.  With the generosity of our donors, we believe we can have our first version of a platform much like Facebook in a month’s time.  To help us, please go to DMLNews.com/donate

FROM JAMI
I’m trying to watch last night’s show, but can’t find it.  I got a notification about it, but wasn’t able to watch it live.

DML: You can always find our videos by clicking here.

FROM ARTHUR
DML.  These letters from the mothers who lost their children to crimes committed by illegals should be sent to the President, and everyone in congress and the senate.

DML: Sir, that would be a total waste of time considering Trump used these mothers all throughout his campaign.  He has turned his back to them, and he knows each of them by name.  Only a little man would do such a thing.

FROM CATHY
Dennis.  Just wanted you to know that I am as broken as you about Trump.  My heart goes out to you who has put SO much into him. Truly I feel we have no hope for anything just.  I wish you were our President now.  What a great country we would have.  Love you Dennis.  You will always have our family as supporters.

DML: Although I understand your point, and appreciate your endearment, Trump cannot break me.  I cannot be broken by any man.  I have not fallen, I have stood my ground and will continue to do so. I do not break my promises, and I do not turn my back on the American people.  Trump is breaking himself, not me.  Trust me on that one.  He may be richer and more famous, and he may be the president (in part by bullshitting his way through a campaign), but he is not the man I am, or so says my wife.  LOL.

FROM DEBBIE
If you were President who would be the first person you would replace and why? Who would you replace them with?

DML: I would remove the DHS secretary because she is horrible.  Once Kelly left the post and went to work inside the WH, the borders have opened again.  Now, this is mostly Trump’s fault for going pro-Dreamer, but your question places me as president, so Trump is no longer a factor.  She would gone, day 1.  I would find a general from the Marines who believed the same way I do about immigration, and he or she would be assigned the job.  If I couldn’t find someone to fit the bill, I would put Kansas Sec of State Kris Kovach in the position.  Although I would prefer he be my attorney general.

FROM LOU
I took your poll this morning stating I will not vote if amnesty passes.  I will screw these guys like they screwed me.

DML: Yes, this is my concern.

 

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REPORT: China and Russia will soon be capable of destroying U.S. satellites

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 06:05 AM PST

A recent Pentagon report warned that anti-satellite missiles and other weapons currently being developed by China and Russia will soon be capable of damaging or destroying all U.S. satellites operating in low-earth orbit.

The document was issued by the Pentagon’s Joint Staff intelligence directorate, known as J-2, and addressed the growing threat of anti-satellite weapons from China and Russia, The Washington Free Beacon reported.

“China and Russia will be capable of severely disrupting or destroying U.S. satellites in low-earth orbit” in the next several years, the report concluded. Officials asserted that Russia and China will have the capability to attack low-earth orbit satellites by 2020.

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats issued a similar warning in May 2017.

“We assess that Russia and China perceive a need to offset any U.S. military advantage derived from military, civil, or commercial space systems and are increasingly considering attacks against satellite systems as part of their future warfare doctrine,” Coats said. “Both will continue to pursue a full range of anti-satellite weapons as a means to reduce U.S. military effectiveness.”

Coats said that Russia and China are brokering international agreements that would limit U.S. defenses in space against anti-satellite weapons.

In testimony before Congress, Coats said that Russia’s space weapons include a “diverse suite of capabilities to affect satellites in all orbital regimes,” including an airborne laser for use against U.S. satellites.

China and Russia are also developing satellites designed to remove space debris that could be utilized to damage U.S. satellites.

In a March 2017 report, the Pentagon’s Defense Science Board also warned of the strategic vulnerability of U.S. satellites.

“The estimated and projected electronic threats against satellite communication have rapidly escalated in the last few years and will continue to increase in the foreseeable future,” the report read.

“Advances and proliferation in advanced electronic warfare, kinetic, space, and cyber capabilities threaten our ability to maintain information superiority,” the report read, noting “under severe stress situations, jamming can render all commercial satcom and most defense satcom inoperable.”

The board warned, “This reality should be considered a crisis to be dealt with immediately.”

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Parents should take away Facebook app from kids, experts say

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 05:58 AM PST

If you’re a parent worried about your child’s use of Facebook, you are spot on with your concerns according to experts.

The Boston-based Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood sent a letter to CEO Mark Zuckerberg and other Facebook higher-ups about the dangers of the social media site’s influence on children.

The Associated Press reports the following:

“BOSTON (AP) — Child development experts and advocates are urging Facebook to pull the plug on its new messaging app aimed at kids.

A group letter sent Tuesday to CEO Mark Zuckerberg argues that younger children — the app is intended for those under 13 — aren't ready to have social media accounts, navigate the complexities of online relationships or protect their own privacy.

Facebook launched the free Messenger Kids app in December, pitching it as a way for children to chat with family members and parent-approved friends. It doesn't give kids separate Facebook or Messenger accounts. Rather, the app works as an extension of a parent's account, and parents get controls such as the ability to decide who their kids can chat with.

The social media giant has said it fills "a need for a messaging app that lets kids connect with people they love but also has the level of control parents want."

But a group of 100 experts, advocates and parenting organizations is contesting those claims. Led by the Boston-based Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, the group includes psychiatrists, pediatricians, educators and the children's music singer Raffi Cavoukian.”

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POLL: If Trump and GOP pass amnesty plan for Dreamers, will you vote in 2018

Posted: 30 Jan 2018 05:51 AM PST

Trump, in his State of the Union address Tuesday, it expected to continue with his push for a bipartisan immigration proposal that includes a pathway for millions of illegal aliens to receive citizenship.  His proposal does not include major items like mandatory eVerify or a visa tracking system.

Immigration experts like Dennis Michael Lynch, Kansas Sec. of State Kovach, and Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies have expressed the many downfalls and concerns over the proposal which puts American lives and jobs in danger.

“One major pitfall of such a plan coming to fruition, is that it will scare off conservative voters and Democrats will take back the country both in the short term, and the long term, finishing off what Obama tried to start…. a one party system,” says DML.  People will be rejected and depressed that the GOP and Trump turned their back on the biggest issue facing America, and broke campaign promises in the process.  It is important to note that Trump understands the impact this all has. In a 2014 tweet, Trump wrote that granting amnesty will not equate to one vote for Republicans.

Our question to you is this:  If the proposal turns into a bill that goes into law, meaning amnesty is given to millions of illegal aliens, will you vote in the 2018 mid-terms, or will you just stay home?

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