Jasper Journal

Where there’s Smoke

by on Apr.23, 2015, under Politics

Could this be the scandal that finally ensnares the elusive Mrs Clinton? While these refilings are not proof of wrongdoing yet, they certainly suggest something is happening that requires this major admission of error. Worse, by doing this , they put an even greater focus on Mrs Clinton’s role as Secretary of State and the ties to her  “Foundation.”. You cant have it both ways. This is the article from Reuters I was just sent by a good friend. I am also looking forward to the FOX special tomorrow night on the book that could be the straw that breaks the Clinton’s backs.  What do you think?


Exclusive: Clinton charities will refile tax returns, audit for other errors

Clinton charities misstated millions in foreign donations (01:44)
(Reuters) – Hillary Clinton’s family’s charities are refiling at least five annual tax returns after a Reuters review found errors in how they reported donations from governments, and said they may audit other Clinton Foundation returns in case of other errors.

The foundation and its list of donors have been under intense scrutiny in recent weeks. Republican critics say the foundation makes Clinton, who is seeking the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016, vulnerable to undue influence. Her campaign team calls these claims “absurd conspiracy theories.”

The charities’ errors generally take the form of under-reporting or over-reporting, by millions of dollars, donations from foreign governments, or in other instances omitting to break out government donations entirely when reporting revenue, the charities confirmed to Reuters.

The errors, which have not been previously reported, appear on the form 990s that all non-profit organizations must file annually with the Internal Revenue Service to maintain their tax-exempt status. A charity must show copies of the forms to anyone who wants to see them to understand how the charity raises and spends money.

The unsettled numbers on the tax returns are not evidence of wrongdoing but tend to undermine the 990s role as a form of public accountability, experts in charity law and transparency advocates interview told Reuters.

“If those numbers keep changing – well, actually, we spent this on this, not that on that – it really defeats the purpose,” said Bill Allison, a senior fellow at the Sunlight Foundation, a government transparency advocacy group.

For three years in a row beginning in 2010, the Clinton Foundation reported to the IRS that it received zero in funds from foreign and U.S. governments, a dramatic fall-off from the tens of millions of dollars in foreign government contributions reported in preceding years.

Those entries were errors, according to the foundation: several foreign governments continued to give tens of millions of dollars toward the foundation’s work on climate change and economic development through this three-year period. Those governments were identified on the foundation’s annually updated donor list, along with broad indications of how much each had cumulatively given since they began donating.


“We are prioritizing an external review to ensure the accuracy of the 990s from 2010, 2011 and 2012 and expect to refile when the review is completed,” Craig Minassian, a foundation spokesman, said in an email.

The decision to review the returns was made last month following inquiries from Reuters, and the foundation has not ruled out extending the review to tax returns extending back 15 or so years.

Minassian declined to comment on why the foundation had not included the necessary break-down of government funding in its 990 forms. He said it was rare to find an organization as transparent as the foundation.

“No charity is required to disclose their donors,” he said. “However, we voluntarily disclose our more than 300,000 donors and post our audited financial statements on our website along with the 990s for anyone to see.”

Separately, the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), the foundation’s flagship program, is refiling its form 990s for at least two years, 2012 and 2013, CHAI spokeswoman Maura Daley said, describing the incorrect government grant break-outs for those two years as typographical errors.

CHAI, which is best known for providing cheaper drugs for tens of thousands of people with HIV around the world, began filing separate tax returns in 2010, and has previously refiled at least once both its 2010 and 2011 form 990s. For both those years, CHAI said its initial filings had over-reported government grants by more than $100 million.

Some experts in charity law and taxes said it was not remarkable for a charity to refile an erroneous return once in a while, but for a large, global charity to refile three or four years in a row was highly unusual.

“I’ve never seen amendment activity like that,” said Bruce Hopkins, a Kansas City lawyer who has specialized in charity law for more than four decades, referring to the CHAI filings.

Clinton stepped down from the foundation’s board of directors this month but her husband, Bill Clinton, and their daughter, Chelsea Clinton, remain directors.

The foundation said last week after Hillary Clinton became a candidate that it would continue to accept funding from foreign governments, but only from six countries that are already supporting ongoing projects. CHAI will also continue to receive foreign government funding, again with additional restrictions.

Nick Merrill, Clinton’s spokesman, has declined to answer inquiries about the foundation and CHAI.

(Additional reporting by David Ingram, editing by Ross Colvin)

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Do not vote to Approve Lynch

by on Apr.21, 2015, under Politics

So once again the President and the media are using racial blackmail to get the Senate to approve Loretta Lynch as Attorney General; and unfortunately it appears to be working. I do not understand why our elected representatives cant stand on principle.  I dont care if she is a black woman or a pink alien, if she will follow in the tradition of Eric Holder, she should not be approved.  In her hearings she said she would support the policies of President Obama on illegal immigrants. Well , that pretty much seals the deal for me: dont approve her.

Sadly, our representatives cant stand up to the charges that she is being held up  because she is a black women. Get over it. She is a clone of Holder and a tool of the President. Is this who we want for Attorney General?  I will look closely at Senators who vote for her. I want people of principle in congress. What do you think? An article on this is below.

Republicans in Quandary Over Vote on Loretta Lynch


WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans do not want to be held responsible for rejecting the historic nomination of Loretta E. Lynch, the first African-American woman picked to be attorney general. But they also are in no hurry to see her confirmed because of her defense of President Obama’s immigration policies.

That contradiction showed signs of being self defeating on Friday, when a visibly emotional Mr. Obama elevated the issue at a news conference by saying “Enough! Enough!” about the record delay, after a call the day before from Jeb Bush, one of the top Republican presidential prospects, to confirm Ms. Lynch.

Loretta E. Lynch, a federal prosecutor in New York and the nominee to replace Eric H. Holder Jr., announcing arrests in a stock fraud case in July.Loretta Lynch Said to See Her Role as That of Traditional ProsecutorJAN. 12, 2015

Loretta E. Lynch, the United States attorney in Brooklyn, received a cordial reception at a Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing for attorney general.Criticism of Holder Dominates Hearing on Loretta Lynch, Attorney General’s Possible SuccessorJAN. 28, 2015
Loretta E. Lynch testifying in New York last year at a hearing of the Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption. Ms. Lynch is a United States attorney who has twice been confirmed by the Senate, in 2000 and in 2010.Loretta Lynch, Federal Prosecutor, Will Be Nominated for Attorney GeneralNOV. 7, 2014
Ms. Lynch is nearing six months in a state of suspended Senate animation, her nomination moving neither forward nor backward but instead becoming a bargaining chip in an unrelated battle, a calculation that carries no small irony given that no Republicans have challenged her credentials, and almost all of them had expressed their enmity for the man she would replace, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr.


Loretta E. Lynch, the first African-American woman picked to be attorney general. For nearly six months, Ms. Lynch’s nomination has moved neither forward nor backward. Credit Susan Walsh/Associated Press
The inert situation shows just how Republican anger and resentment over the president’s immigration actions color issues ranging from Ms. Lynch’s status to trade negotiations to the nuclear talks with Iran. Republicans’ central rationale remains that they cannot trust the president.

After months of simmering over the very slow walk of Ms. Lynch’s nomination by the new Republican majority, Democrats unloaded this week.

The White House spokesman accused a leading Republican senator of duplicity over the treatment of Ms. Lynch. Democrats threatened procedural tactics that would force Republicans to block a vote on bringing up her nomination, stirring additional political repercussions.

So far, though, Senate Republicans have adopted the position of their leader, Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, that he would not bring Ms. Lynch’s nomination for a vote until senators had passed a human trafficking bill. That bill contains some abortion provisions that Democrats find untenable.

Mr. Obama on Friday called the Republican refusal to set a vote on Ms. Lynch an “embarrassing” example of partisanship by the Republican majority. “There are times where the dysfunction in the Senate just goes too far,” Mr. Obama said during a news conference with Prime Minister Matteo Renzi of Italy. “This is an example of it. It’s gone too far. Enough! Enough! Call Loretta Lynch for a vote. Get her confirmed. Put her in place. Let her do her job.”

Mr. McConnell sought to quiet the growing furor over the Lynch stalemate, telling his colleagues the Senate would get to her next week just as he had always planned.

“I have indicated, gosh, at least for six weeks now, we are going to deal with the Lynch nomination right after we finish trafficking,” Mr. McConnell said on the floor Thursday.

Just the fact that Mr. McConnell, by his own admission, has been talking about it for at least six weeks is galling to Democrats, who think she should have been confirmed months ago. They see the Lynch nomination as a prime case of Republican partisan mischief and ill-treatment of woman with a distinguished career as a prosecutor.

Continue reading the main storyContinue reading the main storyContinue reading the main story
While some difficulties were always expected with Ms. Lynch given the traditional political sensitivities of the post of attorney general, no one anticipated after her nomination on Nov. 8 that a vote would still be pending in late April.

As the United States attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Ms. Lynch had a formidable reputation as a prosecutor and administrator and had the strong backing of law enforcement and civil rights groups. Some of the most conservative Republicans were expected to oppose her, but her ultimate approval never seemed in doubt.

So, do we give up or put in doubt future anti-abortion money, or do we simply wait for Ms. Lynch to withdraw?Are those the options?
But at her confirmation hearing on Jan. 28, Ms. Lynch said she found it reasonable that the Justice Department had concluded that Mr. Obama was acting within the limits of his power when he decided to unilaterally ease the threat of deportation against millions of undocumented immigrants. That quickly cost her backing among Republicans who said they could not vote for Ms. Lynch if she was willing to side with the president on his immigration actions.

It is unclear what the Republicans thought she should say since she could hardly be expected to use her confirmation hearing to denounce the actions of the man who had picked her for the post or assert that he had broken the law and would be held accountable once she became the nation’s chief law enforcement officer.

Republicans certainly realized this. But their rush to declare opposition made it clear that they did not want to be viewed as endorsing the president’s immigration policy, even through an association as tangential as voting for a nominee who had nothing to do with shaping the policy but simply refused to condemn it. Ms. Lynch has won public backing from five Republicans, just enough to secure her confirmation when a vote takes place.

Democrats initially thought Mr. McConnell held back on scheduling a vote to demonstrate that he was in charge and was not about to hurry things along for the president.

As the weeks passed with no movement, Democrats became more concerned. Then there was the abortion-related blowup on the sex trafficking bill and Mr. McConnell declared he would not move forward with Ms. Lynch until that fight was resolved.

Mr. McConnell has been clear that he would eventually allow a vote and he most likely will at some point. He and his fellow Republicans might not be thrilled with Ms. Lynch, but they will almost certainly allow her to be confirmed.

With the prospect of Hillary Rodham Clinton as the Democratic presidential nominee next year and given the party’s struggle with minority voters, the Senate’s new Republican majority does not want to be remembered for killing the high-profile nomination of a highly qualified black woman.

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ESPN and Britt McHenry

by on Apr.19, 2015, under Politics, Sports

Last week we had a national uproar over a blonde female sportscaster from ESPN launching a tirade of abuse on a tow yard parking attendant. She has been suspended from her job for a week, and made out to be the worst person on earth. I found only one article, below,  even suggesting there is another side to this story.

If you heard the tape, it is pretty brutal in her assault on the attendant, her looks, her job, and her education.  But other than being a rude spoiled brat, should she be suspended from her job because she flipped out after her car was towed? She didnt even use gay or racial epithets. If she did, I suspect she would get a ticket to the SuperMax here in Colorado.

I had my car towed once in NY and it cost a lot of money to get it out, plus the aggravation of travelling to the other side of hell to get to the tow yard. I was not happy at all. In my case, the tow yard attendant was a police officer. I didnt say anything, but I was  burning on the inside.

So Britt McHenry unloads on this woman in a time of stress. Are TV people not allowed to lose it occasionally? Is she being penalized because she is attractive? More importantly, who released this tow yard video? I wonder if that violated her right to privacy?

McHenry should be ashamed of the way she acted but she  apologized. The media want her fired, and probably  strung up and tarred and feathered.  Please, enough is enough. Let’s let this go. Her reputation is smeared but let’s not be self righteous. We all have bad days. WHat do you think?


ESPN Totally Wrong for Firing Britt McHenry

Kylie Smith, NY Post

So we’ve all gotten a warm feeling of self-righteousness out of mocking ESPN reporter Britt McHenry, who was suspended for a week for saying rude things to a towing-yard employee.

It sure is fun to see pretty, successful blondes taken down a notch. And to do so while expressing solidarity with the beleaguered working class? Perfect.

Except ESPN is supposed to be a journalistic outfit. Maybe it should get both sides of the story before jumping to conclusions. Because there’s another side to this story — and it’s a lot more interesting than “pretty woman yells at maybe-not-so-pretty woman.”

McHenry, a DC-based reporter, was apparently towed by a company called Advanced Towing, a private contractor hired by various entities around the Arlington, Va., area to make sure people don’t illegally park.

Towing cars that are where they aren’t supposed to be is a necessary thing, an act of urban hygiene.

Still, let’s look at the Better Business Bureau rating for this outfit: It’s an F. Out of 40 complaints lodged against the company in the last three years, Advanced Towing has simply ignored 37.

Over to the Yelp reviews. Interesting.

Yelper Mary El P. said in January she paid with a credit card, was told it didn’t work, then presented another credit card. When the statement came, she claims she was billed twice. She says she called up an employee, who was rude and insulting and informed her that disputing a charge on a credit card was a felony.

Yelper Eric T. alleges that a tow trucker apparently spying on him zipped around the corner while he was letting his dog out to pee — and that when he protested, the Advanced Towing driver yelled out, “Don’t park here you f - - king f - - - - t,” using an anti-gay slur.

In early April, a man who ducked into an Arlington CVS for medicine for his sick child says he came back to find his car being jacked up by an Advanced Towing truck — with his two kids inside.

But here’s what’s worse than any of that.

Several reviewers have complained that Advanced Towing brings in legally parked cars — and then, when you complain, simply insults you and holds the car hostage.

Said Yelper KJ B., “Towing serves a purpose, but this company just steals cars! The first time I was towed was from my very own parking spot at my apartment complex. They claimed they didn’t see my parking sticker (despite its obvious placement on the back where it is on EVERY CAR.)”

We don’t even know what was said to McHenry, since the Advanced Towing employee’s remarks have been edited out of the video that went viral.

And how do you feel about private companies with which you did not choose to do business making videos of you, then leaking them to the media for the purpose of humiliating you?

McHenry’s private conversation wasn’t actually any of ESPN’s business and should not even have been captured or distributed without her consent — but ESPN was terrified of the online mob and panicked.

ESPN should do the right thing and reinstate McHenry until it learns the whole story — or simply concede that sometimes people lose their tempers. The way McHenry talks on her worst, most frustrating day is probably how Keith Olbermann talked to his mom.

And to the journalists working in Arlington, Va. — a much more interesting and important story than “Citizen yells at another citizen” just fell into your laps. You’re welcome.

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