I’ve Covered Foreign Lobbying for 20 Years and I’m Amazed Manafort Got Busted

That’s because the foreign lobbying laws are so toothless that you can count on one hand the number of people prosecuted for what Manafort is accused of.
By KEN SILVERSTEIN October 30, 2017
he real news in the indictment of Paul Manafort on charges of laundering and failing to register as a foreign agent is that someone has actually been prosecuted under a foreign lobbying law that has existed for decades but has almost never been enforced. The indictment may or may not prove that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government, but it has already proved how flawed the foreign lobbying rules have always been and how easily they are flouted.
I’m not going to weigh in on whether Manafort or his associate, Rick Gates, did in fact launder more than $18 million dollars, largely gathered as fees from Ukrainian strongman and Putin ally Viktor Yanukovych, but I can say with certainty that the law, which Manafort is accused of violating, known as the Foreign Agents Registration Act, or FARA, is a complete joke. The law was enacted in 1938, but it’s been under-enforced or not enforced at all for ages.

How do I know? Because I’ve written about foreign lobbying and Manafort for more than 20 years. During that time, I’ve seen only a handful of cases brought against people or organizations accused of not registering as foreign agents. And it was always some foreign group, or Washington outsider, or foreign group—the Cuban 5 or someone allegedly connected to Irish Republican Army—never a wired Washington lobbyist like Manafort. Yet Manafort, like dozens of other influence peddlers, has been operating in plain sight for years. I wrote about Manafort as recently as August 2016—one story for Fusion focusing on his Ukraine work and another story for my websiteWashingtonBabylon.com, that looked at his historic work for dictators and crooks.
In 1992, Spy magazine ranked his lobbying firm as the “sleaziest of all in the Beltway,” giving it a “blood-on-the-hands” rating of four. As I wrote in my piece: “That was a full bloody hand more than the rating accorded to runner-up Edward von Kloberg, whose clients—listed in his Rolodex under D for dictators—including Iraq’s Saddam Hussein, Romania’s Nicolae Ceaucescu, and Liberia’s Samuel Doe. It’s no surprise that when asked by the Washington Times what historical figure he’d like to meet, Manafort replied: Machiavelli.” Furthermore, I added, Manafort was born to modest wealth but “monetized his misdeeds at every step of the way.”
I’m hardly the only one who has reported on Manafort’s rather checkered career. The same year as the Spypiece, the Center for Public Integrity issued a report titled “The Torturers’ Lobby,” which cited Manafort and his firm’s work on behalf of human rights abusing regimes in Nigeria, the Philippines and Kenya, as well as a thuggish band of Angolan rebels known as UNITA. All this work, for which he was well-paid, was known precisely because he registered under the FARA laws. But somewhere down the line, it appears, Manafort discovered that registering simply wasn’t necessary, which made it harder to follow his activities.
Now it has come out in excruciating detail. It certainly appears that Manafort received undisclosed money from the Ukrainian government or its business allies, and maybe it was laundered offshore. If true, and it has looked that way for a while, that’s bad. But if you’re going to indict and prosecute lobbyists for failing to disclose their activities, roughly half of Washington would be under arrest. Manafort actually should get points for ever filing and disclosing anything at all, although he didn’t in the case of Ukraine. The Center for Public Integrity, again in the early 1990s, reported that only about half of foreign lobbyists bother filing under FARA, and it’s surely gotten worse since then.
And why would anyone file? Almost no one who cheats gets called to account, so why bother? If you rob banks and TV stations broadcast video images of you pointing a gun at the teller, but the police never bother arresting you, you’d keep robbing banks, right?
It’s the same with lobbyists. The last time I can remember a stir about a lobby firm evading disclosure law was in 2004, when Qorvis Communications’ offices were raided by the FBI in a probe about its work for the royal family of Saudi Arabia. However, nothing much came of it, and business carried on as usual among Washington lobbyists. Two years ago, reportedly, a number of Qorvis lobbyists quit because they were uncomfortable with the firm’s work. According to this 2015 story in the New York Observer, more than a third of Qorvis partners had left the firm—to start their own lobby shops—“partly because of the firm’s work on behalf of such clients as Yemen, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the Central African nation of Equatorial Guinea,” reported the Huffington Post. “‘I just have trouble working with despotic dictators killing their own people,’ said one Qorvis insider.”
The Department of Justice’s own inspector general has confirmed just how toothless the FARA enforcement is. In September 2016, DOJ issued a report that tallied all the prosecutions under FARA since 1966—a total of seven. Only one of the individuals charged was convicted at trial; according to the report, two pleaded guilty to FARA charges, two were convicted on non-FARA charges and two saw their cases dismissed. An important reason for this lack of enforcement is that there are virtually no enforcers. The FARA team at DOJ is small, poorly funded and relies on voluntary compliance. According to a POLITICO story from October, “it usually investigates possible failures to register only when its staff reads about them in the media.”
So, it’s not unreasonable to conclude that the only reason that Manafort got busted was because a special counsel was appointed after the firing of FBI Director James Comey to look into the Trump campaign’s possible collusion with Russia. Manafort has been under investigation since 2014, but if the DOJ’s track record is any indicator, it’s quite likely that had he not been Trump’s campaign manager, Manafort would be kicking back and enjoying his allegedly laundered cash at this very moment.
Manafort is hardly the only Washington lobbyist who appears to have flouted the FARA rules. Evading registration is child’s play for Washington pros. Look at lobbyists, PR executives and opposition researchers caught up in the Russiagate investigation. (And let me emphasize here that I know a lot of them and like them, and I’m only reporting what I’ve read in media accounts and what various lobbyists—not the ones I like—have told me about how little they fear FARA. This is all an open secret in D.C.)
Many of the people involved in the case were lobbying against the Magnitsky Act—the law passed in 2012 that sanctioned and barred some Russian officials suspected of human rights abuses. Putin definitely doesn’t like the Magnitsky Act, and quite frankly, I don’t either—but that doesn’t make me Putin’s agent. More relevantly, none of my lobbyist and PR friends were working, to my knowledge, for the Russian government. Instead, some of them apparently worked, directly or indirectly for the Russian oligarch Denis Katsyv, who was a DOJ target under the Magnitsky Act. Earlier this year, a group of companies owned by Katsyv, who was represented by Natalia Veselnitskaya (the Russian attorney who met with Donald Trump Jr. in the summer of 2016), agreed to pay nearly $6 million to settle allegations that the firms laundered proceeds of a $230 million tax fraud.
And here’s another trick that’s even better, and it’s not just used by Russia. Let’s say a government wants a lobbyist or someone else to do some work for them in Washington. Maybe it’s lobbying and maybe it’s not exactly lobbying. The country simply has a major American law firm hire the lobbyist or PR executive, and now you’re not lobbying for Russia, you’re providing litigation support for a certified American law firm. And it’s 100 percent legal and outside the purview of the ever more meaningless FARA statute.
Makes you wonder why there’s a law at all.
Ken Silverstein is a longtime Washington reporter and the creator of WashingtonBabylon.com.


Prescott Bush Prescott Sheldon Bush Sr. was an American banker and politician. After working as a Wall Street executive investment banker, he represented Connecticut in the United States Senate from 1952 to 1963. A member of the Bush family, he is the father of President George H. W. Bush and the grandfather of President George W. Bush.

How Bush’s grandfather helped Hitler’s rise to power

Ben Aris in Berlin and Duncan Campbell in Washington Saturday 25 September 2004
Rumours of a link between the US first family and the Nazi war machine have circulated for decades. Now the Guardian can reveal how repercussions of events that culminated in action under the Trading with the Enemy Act are still being felt by today’s president.
George Bush’s grandfather, the late US senator Prescott Bush, was a director and shareholder of companies that profited from their involvement with the financial backers of Nazi Germany.
The Guardian has obtained confirmation from newly discovered files in the US National Archives that a firm of which Prescott Bush was a director was involved with the financial architects of Nazism.
His business dealings, which continued until his company’s assets were seized in 1942 under the Trading with the Enemy Act, has led more than 60 years later to a civil action for damages being brought in Germany against the Bush family by two former slave labourers at Auschwitz and to a hum of pre-election controversy.
The evidence has also prompted one former US Nazi war crimes prosecutor to argue that the late senator’s action should have been grounds for prosecution for giving aid and comfort to the enemy.
The debate over Prescott Bush’s behaviour has been bubbling under the surface for some time. There has been a steady internet chatter about the “Bush/Nazi” connection, much of it inaccurate and unfair. But the new documents, many of which were only declassified last year, show that even after America had entered the war and when there was already significant information about the Nazis’ plans and policies, he worked for and profited from companies closely involved with the very German businesses that financed Hitler’s rise to power. It has also been suggested that the money he made from these dealings helped to establish the Bush family fortune and set up its political dynasty.
Remarkably, little of Bush’s dealings with Germany has received public scrutiny, partly because of the secret status of the documentation involving him. But now the multibillion dollar legal action for damages by two Holocaust survivors against the Bush family, and the imminent publication of three books on the subject are threatening to make Prescott Bush’s business history an uncomfortable issue for his grandson, George W, as he seeks re-election.
While there is no suggestion that Prescott Bush was sympathetic to the Nazi cause, the documents reveal that the firm he worked for, Brown Brothers Harriman (BBH), acted as a US base for the German industrialist, Fritz Thyssen, who helped finance Hitler in the 1930s before falling out with him at the end of the decade. The Guardian has seen evidence that shows Bush was the director of the New York-based Union Banking Corporation (UBC) that represented Thyssen’s US interests and he continued to work for the bank after America entered the war.
Bush was also on the board of at least one of the companies that formed part of a multinational network of front companies to allow Thyssen to move assets around the world.
Thyssen owned the largest steel and coal company in Germany and grew rich from Hitler’s efforts to re-arm between the two world wars. One of the pillars in Thyssen’s international corporate web, UBC, worked exclusively for, and was owned by, a Thyssen-controlled bank in the Netherlands. More tantalising are Bush’s links to the Consolidated Silesian Steel Company (CSSC), based in mineral rich Silesia on the German-Polish border. During the war, the company made use of Nazi slave labour from the concentration camps, including Auschwitz. The ownership of CSSC changed hands several times in the 1930s, but documents from the US National Archive declassified last year link Bush to CSSC, although it is not clear if he and UBC were still involved in the company when Thyssen’s American assets were seized in 1942.
Three sets of archives spell out Prescott Bush’s involvement. All three are readily available, thanks to the efficient US archive system and a helpful and dedicated staff at both the Library of Congress in Washington and the National Archives at the University of Maryland.
The first set of files, the Harriman papers in the Library of Congress, show that Prescott Bush was a director and shareholder of a number of companies involved with Thyssen.
The second set of papers, which are in the National Archives, are contained in vesting order number 248 which records the seizure of the company assets. What these files show is that on October 20 1942 the alien property custodian seized the assets of the UBC, of which Prescott Bush was a director. Having gone through the books of the bank, further seizures were made against two affiliates, the Holland-American Trading Corporation and the Seamless Steel Equipment Corporation. By November, the Silesian-American Company, another of Prescott Bush’s ventures, had also been seized.
The third set of documents, also at the National Archives, are contained in the files on IG Farben, who was prosecuted for war crimes.
A report issued by the Office of Alien Property Custodian in 1942 stated of the companies that “since 1939, these (steel and mining) properties have been in possession of and have been operated by the German government and have undoubtedly been of considerable assistance to that country’s war effort”.
Prescott Bush, a 6ft 4in charmer with a rich singing voice, was the founder of the Bush political dynasty and was once considered a potential presidential candidate himself. Like his son, George, and grandson, George W, he went to Yale where he was, again like his descendants, a member of the secretive and influential Skull and Bones student society. He was an artillery captain in the first world war and married Dorothy Walker, the daughter of George Herbert Walker, in 1921.
In 1924, his father-in-law, a well-known St Louis investment banker, helped set him up in business in New York with Averill Harriman, the wealthy son of railroad magnate E H Harriman in New York, who had gone into banking.
One of the first jobs Walker gave Bush was to manage UBC. Bush was a founding member of the bank and the incorporation documents, which list him as one of seven directors, show he owned one share in UBC worth $125.
The bank was set up by Harriman and Bush’s father-in-law to provide a US bank for the Thyssens, Germany’s most powerful industrial family.
August Thyssen, the founder of the dynasty had been a major contributor to Germany’s first world war effort and in the 1920s, he and his sons Fritz and Heinrich established a network of overseas banks and companies so their assets and money could be whisked offshore if threatened again.
By the time Fritz Thyssen inherited the business empire in 1926, Germany’s economic recovery was faltering. After hearing Adolf Hitler speak, Thyssen became mesmerised by the young firebrand. He joined the Nazi party in December 1931 and admits backing Hitler in his autobiography, I Paid Hitler, when the National Socialists were still a radical fringe party. He stepped in several times to bail out the struggling party: in 1928 Thyssen had bought the Barlow Palace on Briennerstrasse, in Munich, which Hitler converted into the Brown House, the headquarters of the Nazi party. The money came from another Thyssen overseas institution, the Bank voor Handel en Scheepvarrt in Rotterdam.
By the late 1930s, Brown Brothers Harriman, which claimed to be the world’s largest private investment bank, and UBC had bought and shipped millions of dollars of gold, fuel, steel, coal and US treasury bonds to Germany, both feeding and financing Hitler’s build-up to war.
Between 1931 and 1933 UBC bought more than $8m worth of gold, of which $3m was shipped abroad. According to documents seen by the Guardian, after UBC was set up it transferred $2m to BBH accounts and between 1924 and 1940 the assets of UBC hovered around $3m, dropping to $1m only on a few occasions.
In 1941, Thyssen fled Germany after falling out with Hitler but he was captured in France and detained for the remainder of the war.
There was nothing illegal in doing business with the Thyssens throughout the 1930s and many of America’s best-known business names invested heavily in the German economic recovery. However, everything changed after Germany invaded Poland in 1939. Even then it could be argued that BBH was within its rights continuing business relations with the Thyssens until the end of 1941 as the US was still technically neutral until the attack on Pearl Harbor. The trouble started on July 30 1942 when the New York Herald-Tribune ran an article entitled “Hitler’s Angel Has $3m in US Bank”. UBC’s huge gold purchases had raised suspicions that the bank was in fact a “secret nest egg” hidden in New York for Thyssen and other Nazi bigwigs. The Alien Property Commission (APC) launched an investigation.
There is no dispute over the fact that the US government seized a string of assets controlled by BBH – including UBC and SAC – in the autumn of 1942 under the Trading with the Enemy act. What is in dispute is if Harriman, Walker and Bush did more than own these companies on paper.
Erwin May, a treasury attache and officer for the department of investigation in the APC, was assigned to look into UBC’s business. The first fact to emerge was that Roland Harriman, Prescott Bush and the other directors didn’t actually own their shares in UBC but merely held them on behalf of Bank voor Handel. Strangely, no one seemed to know who owned the Rotterdam-based bank, including UBC’s president.
May wrote in his report of August 16 1941: “Union Banking Corporation, incorporated August 4 1924, is wholly owned by the Bank voor Handel en Scheepvaart N.V of Rotterdam, the Netherlands. My investigation has produced no evidence as to the ownership of the Dutch bank. Mr Cornelis [sic] Lievense, president of UBC, claims no knowledge as to the ownership of the Bank voor Handel but believes it possible that Baron Heinrich Thyssen, brother of Fritz Thyssen, may own a substantial interest.”
May cleared the bank of holding a golden nest egg for the Nazi leaders but went on to describe a network of companies spreading out from UBC across Europe, America and Canada, and how money from voor Handel travelled to these companies through UBC.
By September May had traced the origins of the non-American board members and found that Dutchman HJ Kouwenhoven – who met with Harriman in 1924 to set up UBC – had several other jobs: in addition to being the managing director of voor Handel he was also the director of the August Thyssen bank in Berlin and a director of Fritz Thyssen’s Union Steel Works, the holding company that controlled Thyssen’s steel and coal mine empire in Germany.
Within a few weeks, Homer Jones, the chief of the APC investigation and research division sent a memo to the executive committee of APC recommending the US government vest UBC and its assets. Jones named the directors of the bank in the memo, including Prescott Bush’s name, and wrote: “Said stock is held by the above named individuals, however, solely as nominees for the Bank voor Handel, Rotterdam, Holland, which is owned by one or more of the Thyssen family, nationals of Germany and Hungary. The 4,000 shares hereinbefore set out are therefore beneficially owned and help for the interests of enemy nationals, and are vestible by the APC,” according to the memo from the National Archives seen by the Guardian.
Jones recommended that the assets be liquidated for the benefit of the government, but instead UBC was maintained intact and eventually returned to the American shareholders after the war. Some claim that Bush sold his share in UBC after the war for $1.5m – a huge amount of money at the time – but there is no documentary evidence to support this claim. No further action was ever taken nor was the investigation continued, despite the fact UBC was caught red-handed operating a American shell company for the Thyssen family eight months after America had entered the war and that this was the bank that had partly financed Hitler’s rise to power.
The most tantalising part of the story remains shrouded in mystery: the connection, if any, between Prescott Bush, Thyssen, Consolidated Silesian Steel Company (CSSC) and Auschwitz.
Thyssen’s partner in United Steel Works, which had coal mines and steel plants across the region, was Friedrich Flick, another steel magnate who also owned part of IG Farben, the powerful German chemical company.
Flick’s plants in Poland made heavy use of slave labour from the concentration camps in Poland. According to a New York Times article published in March 18 1934 Flick owned two-thirds of CSSC while “American interests” held the rest.
The US National Archive documents show that BBH’s involvement with CSSC was more than simply holding the shares in the mid-1930s. Bush’s friend and fellow “bonesman” Knight Woolley, another partner at BBH, wrote to Averill Harriman in January 1933 warning of problems with CSSC after the Poles started their drive to nationalise the plant. “The Consolidated Silesian Steel Company situation has become increasingly complicated, and I have accordingly brought in Sullivan and Cromwell, in order to be sure that our interests are protected,” wrote Knight. “After studying the situation Foster Dulles is insisting that their man in Berlin get into the picture and obtain the information which the directors here should have. You will recall that Foster is a director and he is particularly anxious to be certain that there is no liability attaching to the American directors.”
But the ownership of the CSSC between 1939 when the Germans invaded Poland and 1942 when the US government vested UBC and SAC is not clear.
“SAC held coal mines and definitely owned CSSC between 1934 and 1935, but when SAC was vested there was no trace of CSSC. All concrete evidence of its ownership disappears after 1935 and there are only a few traces in 1938 and 1939,” says Eva Schweitzer, the journalist and author whose book, America and the Holocaust, is published next month.
Silesia was quickly made part of the German Reich after the invasion, but while Polish factories were seized by the Nazis, those belonging to the still neutral Americans (and some other nationals) were treated more carefully as Hitler was still hoping to persuade the US to at least sit out the war as a neutral country. Schweitzer says American interests were dealt with on a case-by-case basis. The Nazis bought some out, but not others.
The two Holocaust survivors suing the US government and the Bush family for a total of $40bn in compensation claim both materially benefited from Auschwitz slave labour during the second world war.
Kurt Julius Goldstein, 87, and Peter Gingold, 85, began a class action in America in 2001, but the case was thrown out by Judge Rosemary Collier on the grounds that the government cannot be held liable under the principle of “state sovereignty”.
Jan Lissmann, one of the lawyers for the survivors, said: “President Bush withdrew President Bill Clinton’s signature from the treaty [that founded the court] not only to protect Americans, but also to protect himself and his family.”
Lissmann argues that genocide-related cases are covered by international law, which does hold governments accountable for their actions. He claims the ruling was invalid as no hearing took place.
In their claims, Mr Goldstein and Mr Gingold, honorary chairman of the League of Anti-fascists, suggest the Americans were aware of what was happening at Auschwitz and should have bombed the camp.
The lawyers also filed a motion in The Hague asking for an opinion on whether state sovereignty is a valid reason for refusing to hear their case. A ruling is expected within a month.
The petition to The Hague states: “From April 1944 on, the American Air Force could have destroyed the camp with air raids, as well as the railway bridges and railway lines from Hungary to Auschwitz. The murder of about 400,000 Hungarian Holocaust victims could have been prevented.”
The case is built around a January 22 1944 executive order signed by President Franklin Roosevelt calling on the government to take all measures to rescue the European Jews. The lawyers claim the order was ignored because of pressure brought by a group of big American companies, including BBH, where Prescott Bush was a director.
Lissmann said: “If we have a positive ruling from the court it will cause [president] Bush huge problems and make him personally liable to pay compensation.”
The US government and the Bush family deny all the claims against them.
In addition to Eva Schweitzer’s book, two other books are about to be published that raise the subject of Prescott Bush’s business history. The author of the second book, to be published next year, John Loftus, is a former US attorney who prosecuted Nazi war criminals in the 70s. Now living in St Petersburg, Florida and earning his living as a security commentator for Fox News and ABC radio, Loftus is working on a novel which uses some of the material he has uncovered on Bush. Loftus stressed that what Prescott Bush was involved in was just what many other American and British businessmen were doing at the time.
“You can’t blame Bush for what his grandfather did any more than you can blame Jack Kennedy for what his father did – bought Nazi stocks – but what is important is the cover-up, how it could have gone on so successfully for half a century, and does that have implications for us today?” he said.
“This was the mechanism by which Hitler was funded to come to power, this was the mechanism by which the Third Reich’s defence industry was re-armed, this was the mechanism by which Nazi profits were repatriated back to the American owners, this was the mechanism by which investigations into the financial laundering of the Third Reich were blunted,” said Loftus, who is vice-chairman of the Holocaust Museum in St Petersburg.
“The Union Banking Corporation was a holding company for the Nazis, for Fritz Thyssen,” said Loftus. “At various times, the Bush family has tried to spin it, saying they were owned by a Dutch bank and it wasn’t until the Nazis took over Holland that they realised that now the Nazis controlled the apparent company and that is why the Bush supporters claim when the war was over they got their money back. Both the American treasury investigations and the intelligence investigations in Europe completely bely that, it’s absolute horseshit. They always knew who the ultimate beneficiaries were.”
“There is no one left alive who could be prosecuted but they did get away with it,” said Loftus. “As a former federal prosecutor, I would make a case for Prescott Bush, his father-in-law (George Walker) and Averill Harriman [to be prosecuted] for giving aid and comfort to the enemy. They remained on the boards of these companies knowing that they were of financial benefit to the nation of Germany.”
Loftus said Prescott Bush must have been aware of what was happening in Germany at the time. “My take on him was that he was a not terribly successful in-law who did what Herbert Walker told him to. Walker and Harriman were the two evil geniuses, they didn’t care about the Nazis any more than they cared about their investments with the Bolsheviks.”
What is also at issue is how much money Bush made from his involvement. His supporters suggest that he had one token share. Loftus disputes this, citing sources in “the banking and intelligence communities” and suggesting that the Bush family, through George Herbert Walker and Prescott, got $1.5m out of the involvement. There is, however, no paper trail to this sum.
The third person going into print on the subject is John Buchanan, 54, a Miami-based magazine journalist who started examining the files while working on a screenplay. Last year, Buchanan published his findings in the venerable but small-circulation New Hampshire Gazette under the headline “Documents in National Archives Prove George Bush’s Grandfather Traded With the Nazis – Even After Pearl Harbor”. He expands on this in his book to be published next month – Fixing America: Breaking the Stranglehold of Corporate Rule, Big Media and the Religious Right.
In the article, Buchanan, who has worked mainly in the trade and music press with a spell as a muckraking reporter in Miami, claimed that “the essential facts have appeared on the internet and in relatively obscure books but were dismissed by the media and Bush family as undocumented diatribes”.
Buchanan suffers from hypermania, a form of manic depression, and when he found himself rebuffed in his initial efforts to interest the media, he responded with a series of threats against the journalists and media outlets that had spurned him. The threats, contained in e-mails, suggested that he would expose the journalists as “traitors to the truth”.
Unsurprisingly, he soon had difficulty getting his calls returned. Most seriously, he faced aggravated stalking charges in Miami, in connection with a man with whom he had fallen out over the best way to publicise his findings. The charges were dropped last month.
Buchanan said he regretted his behaviour had damaged his credibility but his main aim was to secure publicity for the story. Both Loftus and Schweitzer say Buchanan has come up with previously undisclosed documentation.
The Bush family have largely responded with no comment to any reference to Prescott Bush. Brown Brothers Harriman also declined to comment.
The Bush family recently approved a flattering biography of Prescott Bush entitled Duty, Honour, Country by Mickey Herskowitz. The publishers, Rutledge Hill Press, promised the book would “deal honestly with Prescott Bush’s alleged business relationships with Nazi industrialists and other accusations”.
In fact, the allegations are dealt with in less than two pages. The book refers to the Herald-Tribune story by saying that “a person of less established ethics would have panicked … Bush and his partners at Brown Brothers Harriman informed the government regulators that the account, opened in the late 1930s, was ‘an unpaid courtesy for a client’ … Prescott Bush acted quickly and openly on behalf of the firm, served well by a reputation that had never been compromised. He made available all records and all documents. Viewed six decades later in the era of serial corporate scandals and shattered careers, he received what can be viewed as the ultimate clean bill.”
The Prescott Bush story has been condemned by both conservatives and some liberals as having nothing to do with the current president. It has also been suggested that Prescott Bush had little to do with Averill Harriman and that the two men opposed each other politically.
However, documents from the Harriman papers include a flattering wartime profile of Harriman in the New York Journal American and next to it in the files is a letter to the financial editor of that paper from Prescott Bush congratulating the paper for running the profile. He added that Harriman’s “performance and his whole attitude has been a source of inspiration and pride to his partners and his friends”.
The Anti-Defamation League in the US is supportive of Prescott Bush and the Bush family. In a statement last year they said that “rumours about the alleged Nazi ‘ties’ of the late Prescott Bush … have circulated widely through the internet in recent years. These charges are untenable and politically motivated … Prescott Bush was neither a Nazi nor a Nazi sympathiser.”
However, one of the country’s oldest Jewish publications, the Jewish Advocate, has aired the controversy in detail.
More than 60 years after Prescott Bush came briefly under scrutiny at the time of a faraway war, his grandson is facing a different kind of scrutiny but one underpinned by the same perception that, for some people, war can be a profitable business.

@PAHealthDept @GovernorTomWolf and @PhysGenLevine ‏ Medical Marijuana Program is a terrible website.

@GovernorTomWolf and @PhysGenLevine   your job is to educate Pennsylvania about the Medical Marijuana Program.Who is in charge of the Medical Marijuana Program website? You are doing a lousy job or informing the public about anything!
“PHYSICIAN REGISTRY The Department of Health will perform a scheduled maintenance of the physician registry from Oct. 24-27. During this time the physician registry will not be available. If you have any questions, please email RA-DHMedMarijuana@pa.gov. Thank you for your patience.”
Today is 10/28/17 and no one has done anything about this site.
PA’s Medical Marijuana Program — Pennsylvania DOH‏ @PAHealthDept
This is a terrible website and there are no Physicians listed there
http://medicalmarijuana.pa.gov which redirects to
3 things you can do now to be ready when the patient registry opens.
Remind your Doctor to sign up 0:28 at http://medicalmarijuana.pa.gov
List of Registered Physicians
If you have any questions, please email RA-DHMedMarijuana@pa.gov. Thank you for your patience.

Eric D. Hargan‏ @DepSecHargan Oct 26
Following @POTUS’s request, @HHSGov has declared a nationwide #PublicHealth Emergency regarding #opioids.
U.S. Surgeon General @Surgeon_General Oct 27
Addiction is a chronic disease that requires a coordinated effort. Read my statement on @POTUS action on #opioids: http://bit.ly/2hfhCHN
CDC‏V @CDCgov Oct 27
More New @CDCInjury report analyzes #opioid overdose deaths in 10 states & finds fentanyl a key driver. http://bit.ly/2xuAaK8
Legal Marijuana Linked to Fewer Opioid Prescriptions
2016 In states where medical marijuana is legal, prescriptions for drugs for conditions where pot could serve as an alternative have dropped significantly, according to a recent report published in the journal Health Affairs
One of the most stunning drops in the report was in prescriptions of painkillers, which are currently in the spotlight due to a nationwide epidemic of opioid addiction. The researchers found that doctors in a state where marijuana is legal ended up prescribing an average of 1,826 fewer doses of painkillers per year.
To reach these findings, the study authors looked at data on all prescriptions filled by Medicare Part D enrollees from 2010 to 2013. They also saw a link between legalized medical marijuana laws and a drop in prescriptions for antidepressants, seizure medication, sleeping pills, anxiety medication and anti-nausea drugs.
So far, 24 states and the District of Columbia have passed a medical marijuana law, though not all of the states have fully implemented those laws.
2016 Colorado Raised More Tax Revenue From Marijuana Than From Alcohol
Colorado collected almost $70 million in marijuana taxes during that time, nearly double the $42 million collected from alcohol taxes. The state had a tax holiday for marijuana on Wednesday, an event that was welcomed by consumers and producers alike. The sales tax holiday underscores the sheer productivity of marijuana taxes, Mason Tvert, director of communications for the Marijuana Policy Project, told the Colorado Spring Business Journal.
You’re aware America is under siege, fighting an opioid crisis that has exploded into a public-health emergency. You’ve heard of OxyContin, the pain medication to which countless patients have become addicted. But do you know that the company that makes Oxy and reaps the billions of dollars in profits it generates is owned by one family?
Named after Arthur, Mortimer and Raymond Sackler, U.S. physicians who made substantial donations to the school.
Mortimer Sackler was awarded an honorary knighthood in 1999 for his philanthropy in Britain

The family behind popular painkiller drug OxyContin. Three doctors — brothers Arthur (d. 1987), Mortimer (d. 2010) and Raymond Sackler (pictured above with his wife, Beverly) — founded Purdue Pharma in 1952 after taking over a small, struggling New York drug manufacturer. The company sold several moderately successful products, like earwax remover and laxatives, but remained under the radar until the mid-1990s when it began selling what amounted to morphine in a pill. OxyContin, a long-lasting, narcotic pain reliever, launched in 1995 and by 2003 Purdue was selling $1.6 billion of the product annually. It became abused by addicts who would crush the pills for a quick, intense high, sparking controversy and legal action against Purdue. The company paid more than $600 million in 2007 to settle charges with federal prosecutors that it had misbranded OxyContin as safer and less addictive than it was. In December 2015 it settled a similar lawsuit with the state of Kentucky. Some had said the case might yield more than $1 billion in damages; the company agreed to pay $24 million and admitted no wrongdoing. Today, Purdue, still 100% owned by the Sackler family, generates some $3 billion in sales in the U.S. Separate Sackler-owned companies sell drugs in Europe, Canada, Asia and Latin America. An estimated 20 family members share the fortune.


Russia Clinton #Uranium Sale It’s all a lie and distraction




Child Bride Abuse is Legal in the U.S. – WHY?? HEY @RepSpeier do something!

Why does the US have so many child brides? #USchildbrides #meToo

2:00 Idaho has the highest rate of child brides. In 25 US states THERE IS NO SET MINIMUM AGE BELOW WHICH A CHILD CAN’T GET MARRIED. !!!!!!

Angel was 13 when her mother forced her to marry and start a family. “I felt like a slave,” she says of her childhood.
While countries like Zimbabwe, Malawi and El Salvador have recently banned child marriage, it remains legal in the US – and half of states have no set minimum age below which you cannot get married.
For the BBC’s America First? series the BBC’s Aleem Maqbool is exploring health and social issues where the US, the richest country in the world, does not perform well in international rankings.
Video by Franz Strasser; produced by Ashley Semler
Few in Washington are saying #MeToo. California congresswoman wants to change that.
@RepSpeier California Congresswoman Jackie Speier is hoping to change that. The veteran lawmaker is planning to introduce new measures that would shine a light on sexual harassment in Congress and make it easier for victims of harassment to report it.
On Capitol Hill, there’s been mostly silence. Many female lawmakers have tweeted about #MeToo in recent days, but their spokespeople say they were using the tag to show their solidarity with harassment victims, not to signal they, too, have been harassed. Just four women senators participated in an Oct. 22 Meet the Press segment on NBC that asked them to share their #MeToo stories. None of the incidents related by Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., or Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, occurred in Washington. ​The ratio of complaints to employees in Congress is one-seventh​ what it is in the executive branch.
Women of the Senate Share Their #MeToo Stories of Harassment
The Movement of #MeToo How a hashtag got its power
UPDATE 11/9/17
Roy Moore thinks gay people should be jailed & Muslims should be banned from Congress. Republican Senators are now shocked to discover he’s a terrible person?
Breitbart: Hey, Let’s Litigate Age of Consent
Moore and his allies distort Scripture and law beyond recognition to pursue their selfish ends.
This defense of Roy Moore from AL state Auditor Jim Ziegler: “Take Joseph and Mary. Mary was a teenager and Joseph was an adult carpenter. They became parents of Jesus.”
There will be a Federalist piece within the next 24 hours about how judgmental urban elites don’t understand Roy Moore and Southern courtship culture.
A former classmate of Judge Roy Moore at the University of Alabama Law School was not surprised at allegations that the Republican Senate nominee had sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl in the late 1970s. Instead, he warns the state “to beware of false prophets.” “No I wasn’t surprised,” the classmate tells the Washington Examiner on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisal on his law firm. “Because I have seen, all my life, Bible-thumping, God-fearing hypocrites.”
Though Moore was a year ahead, the two had class together shortly before the GOP Senate hopeful allegedly began a sexual relationship with a 14-year-old girl. According to a bombshell Washington Post report, four different women say Moore pursued a relationship with them while they were still teenagers. Moore, naturally, claims the allegations are “smear tactics” and elected officials are even invoking Mary and Joseph to defend him.

URLwire Eric Richard Ward August 12, 1959 – October 16, 2017

Eric Ward passed away October 16, 2017 at the age of 58.

Eric was born and lived years in New Jersey, before moving with family to Signal Mountain in Chattanooga, TN where he attended and graduated from Baylor School. Eric then went on to The University of Tennessee Knoxville, was in the Sigma Chi Fraternity, and studied education and business. He later attended UTK for graduate school to study educational and counseling psychology, and Internet Technology. Eric began his Internet Business 25 years ago. He developed, created and executed effective content linking. He was known as Link Moses.

Monday, October 23, 2017 04:00 PM – 06:00 PM
Berry Highland Memorial

My deepest condolences to his family.

#Sugar the first drug! New Study proves #Sugar makes #cancerous tumors more aggressive

Fructose-1,6-bisphosphate couples glycolytic flux to activation of Ras


How does cancer develop? 

Researchers found yeast with high levels of the sugar known as glucose overstimulated the same proteins often found mutated inside human tumors, making cells grow faster.
The research “is able to explain the correlation between the strength of the Warburg effect and tumor aggressiveness,” Thevelein, from KU Leuven in Belgium, said in a release. “This link between sugar and cancer has sweeping consequences. Our results provide a foundation for future research in this domain, which can now be performed with a much more precise and relevant focus.”

Media outlets just act in their owners’ best interest
(which is to eliminate competition and preserve status quo), that’s all.

There is no conspiracy theory here, just one (quite stunning) fact/statistic:

“In 1983, 90% of US media was controlled by fifty companies; 2016  90% is controlled by just six companies”

2016 How the Sugar Industry Shifted Blame to Fat

The sugar industry paid scientists in the 1960s to play down the link between sugar and heart disease and promote saturated fat as the culprit instead, newly released historical documents show.  The internal sugar industry documents, recently discovered by a researcher at the University of California, San Francisco, and published Monday in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggest that five decades of research into the role of nutrition and heart disease, including many of today’s dietary recommendations, may have been largely shaped by the sugar industry.  “They were able to derail the discussion about sugar for decades,” said Stanton Glantz, a professor of medicine at U.C.S.F. and an author of the JAMA Internal Medicine paper.

2015 year, an article in The New York Times revealed that Coca-Cola, the world’s largest producer of sugary beverages, had provided millions of dollars in funding to researchers who sought to play down the link between sugary drinks and obesity. In June, The Associated Press reported that candy makers were funding studies that claimed that children who eat candy tend to weigh less than those who do not.
The Harvard scientists and the sugar executives with whom they collaborated are no longer alive. One of the scientists who was paid by the sugar industry was D. Mark Hegsted, who went on to become the head of nutrition at the United States Department of Agriculture, where in 1977 he helped draft the forerunner to the federal government’s dietary guidelines. Another was Dr. Fredrick J. Stare, the chairman of Harvard’s nutrition department.

The 2nd Drug – Opium

You’re aware America is under siege, fighting an opioid crisis that has exploded into a public-health emergency. You’ve heard of #OxyContin, the pain medication to which countless patients have become addicted. But do you know that the company that makes Oxy and reaps the billions of dollars in profits it generates is owned by one family?



The Educational CyberPlayGround has been following this story since 1994!!! and trying to help the public ever since then as you will be able to see by following this  link

New York City Department of Education has approximately 1.1 million students in over 1,800 schools, has received approximately $1.3 billion in E-rate program payments since 1998.
Government documents said the fraud may have lasted from as long as 2002 through 2008, but Verizon was only charged in a federal civil complaint with filing a fraudulent bill in 2006.
As part of the FCC settlement, Verizon will operate under a compliance plan for three years. It also agreed to surrender any appeal rights to more than $100 million in E-rate subsidy payments. FCC chairman Ajit Pai said in a statement that the settlement was an “important measure that both enforces our rules and restores critical taxpayer dollars” to the Universal Service Fund, a government fund that provides subsidies for telecommunications services.
Democratic FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn said in a statement the incident caused “over $50 million of harm to the Universal Service Fund” and said the FCC settled “for a fraction of that harm.”

CIA Director is a liar. He is forced to admit Russian meddling affected the outcome of the Trump election. Video Duration: 1:31
10/6/16 At the center of 2016’s most intense weekend
Jennifer Palmieri and Glen Caplin, former Clinton campaign officials, talk with Rachel Maddow about the day the Trump “grabbing” tape was revealed while the U.S. government announced that Russia was hacking the election and their campaign e-mails were being published to Wikileaks. VIDEO Duration: 6:52
How America overlooked the Russia election hack in one crazy day
Rachel Maddow revisits how the Donald Trump “grabbing” tape, the release of hacked Clinton campaign e-mails, and the arrival of a major hurricane, obscured the U.S. government’s announcement that Russia was interfering in the election. VIDEO Duration: 12:27
Russian propaganda may have been shared hundreds of millions of times, new research says – The Washington Post
Russian-linked Facebook ads targeted Michigan and Wisconsin
Russian propaganda targets and engages U.S. military personnel, study finds
‘Genius Grant’ Winner Used A Soap Opera To Prove A Point About Prejudice
by Maanvi Singh
What will it take for the people of this world to drop their prejudices, to move past intolerance — and just get along?..

Age 64 Alert Republican health proposal may mean you work longer and save less for retirement

This is what the proposed health-care bill means for older Americans
“Medical costs are already a leading cause of bankruptcy,” says Katy Votva, president of Goodcare.com. “Approval of this legislation will cause intolerable financial strain a considerable number of households. Additionally, all others with health insurance will pay higher premiums and taxes due to the inevitable cost shifting requited to pay for uncompensated care.”
Dr. Katy Votava President

Older pre-Medicare Americans will have to pay more for health insurance and health care should the Senate’s bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) — the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) — become the law of the land.
What’s more, older Americans may have to reduce the amount they save for retirement, or use retirement funds to pay for current health-care needs, or keep working to age 65 if only to keep their employer-sponsored health insurance plan.
Number of people to lose coverage
The Senate bill would increase the number of people who are uninsured by 22 million in 2026 relative to the number under current law, slightly fewer than the increase in the number of uninsured estimated for the House-passed legislation, according to a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report released on Monday. By 2026, an estimated 49 million people would be uninsured, compared with 28 million who would lack insurance that year under current law, the CBO says.
What’s more, the increase would be disproportionately larger among older people with lower income—particularly people between 50 and 64 years old with income of less than 200% of the federal poverty level, the CBO wrote.

An Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute [LYN17343]
as Posted on the Website of the Senate Committee on the Budget on June 26, 2017

Under the House bill, the American Health Care Act (AHCA), the CBO estimated that more than five million older adults ages 50-64 would lose health insurance.

Fall is right time to rethink your Medicare drug plan options

Each September, enrollees in Medicare prescription drug and Advantage plans receive letters from their insurance companies detailing any changes in coverage for the year ahead. Called the Annual Notice of Change, the document is well worth reviewing, because it arrives just ahead of the annual fall plan open enrollment period, which runs from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7.

In many cases, the letter should be a wake-up call to re-shop coverage, especially where Part D drug plans are concerned. These plans often change their premiums from year to year, along with their rules for cost-sharing, coverage of specific medications – and even whether a specific drug will be covered.


The best starting point for shopping plans is the Medicare Plan Finder at the Medicare website (bit.ly/1AezyE7). Plug in your Medicare number and drugs (you will need each drug’s name and dosage). The plan finder then displays a list of plans that match your needs, including their estimated total cost (premiums and out-of-pocket expenses); which drugs are covered; and customer-satisfaction ratings. The finder also will give you advice about drug utilization and restrictions.

If your drug needs are complicated, a range of expert help is available.

State Health Insurance Assistance Programs (SHIPs) provide free counseling on coverage options (click here to find your local SHIP bit.ly/1OU0sfN). The Trump administration and congressional budget writers have proposed to eliminate SHIP, but any cuts – if they do come at all – will affect this fall’s enrollment season.

The Medicare Rights Center also offers free counseling by phone (1-800-333-4114).
Finally, if you are willing to pay to obtain expert help with plan selection, hire an independent, fee-based counseling service such as Allsup Medicare Advisor (here) or Goodcare (bit.ly/2yHKL4J). For a few hundred dollars, these firms will provide a written, personalized plan analysis and offer phone consultations.

St. Croix, St. John, St. Thomas USVI and Puerto Rico OffGridBox.com  can deliver electricity and drinking water anywhere. 

OffGridBox.com  can deliver electricity and drinking water anywhere. Globally Distributed OffGridBox™ can be shipped globally, quickly installed, and easily maintained regardless of geographic location.
A Compact, All-In-One Solution The OffGridBox™ system fits entirely inside a 6x6x6 feet shipping container and is equipped with all the hardware needed to produce electricity and clean water.
On average our base model can produce enough energy and clean water to meet the needs of a family of a 300 families village in Rwanda (to impact 1500 people)