Opinion: Zuma is not a victim

We are still living through the previous President and his misgivings… this being former President Jacob G. Zuma. The former African National Congress President and leader have been going through a long and prolonged investigation into his actions in office. This is the State Capture cases and the Grand Corruption, which he was involved in.

Zuma had the years of 2009 to 2018 as President and 2005 to 2008 as Vice President. So, this man has been in the halls of power and enjoyed the perks of it. That is why him and his team is defending the looting and usage of office. The man wasn’t born with a silver-spoon, neither was a inventor or a serial entrepreneur. No, he was a career politician who rise up through the ranks of the ANC. This is why his wealth, connections and everything was on a rise while he had power.

We all know that suddenly he had funds, house in the Middle East and built a village in Nkandla. These sorts of efforts and enterprises doesn’t happen overnight. Neither, does the use of State Owned Enterprises to favourable business-partners in the Oakbay or Gupta Family sphere. These are all things that the courts and Zondo Commission have to assess. All of these acts over the years and every business deal made with his associates.

Over all those years… there was so many scandals, SOEs involved and other “investors” all eating of the plate. While the President was getting kickbacks and favours. That wasn’t shocking. Neither that his family members and ministers was doing that as well. It was a collective effort and Zuma was skimming of it.

So, that Zuma on the 1st February 2021 calls himself a victim and that he is being hunted is wrong. His being investigated and hopefully something can come out of this. As the years are going. The cases are getting old. The documents and affidavits are there. The proof is still there, but the corruption scandals shouldn’t lose relevance.

Zuma had no issues robbing the state and the accounts of the state. The President had no issues getting kickbacks and enriching himself in office. So, it is now that he got to defend himself. The former President turns himself into a victim. The investigation and criminal proceedings are aligned with apartheid. By doing that the former President isn’t only revising history, but also making himself not accountable for his own actions. That is not shocking, because at some point… this man made it look like he could get away it.

This is why we are now in 2021. There been several of times this seemed to be closer to an end. There been charges, but no sentencing. There been indictments and investigations, but no finalization of these cases. The ex-President should answer and possible serve time. That is up the to the courts, but people stealing much less hasn’t gotten any mercy. Therefore, if there is an equal justice before law. Then Zuma should answer for his crimes, but not alone. He should answer together with his associates and political operatives. That all knew this was happening. It wasn’t happening in a vacuum.

Zuma isn’t a victim. That is a lie. He is a man in legal jeopardy and deserves to get investigated. There is no need to bring a up terrible past, which has nothing to do with it. That is just misusing it to gain political mileage. That maybe worked before, but it shouldn’t work now.

Zuma did the bidding in office, earned his coins and wealth. He should answer for that. Since, he wasn’t a mighty businessman or inventor of some kind. No, he was just another politician with a crooked method of gaining funds. Peace.

Opinion: If you need a pardon, aren’t you guilty?

There are now reports in the news that President Donald J. Trump plans to pardon his inner-family and the “extended one” as his leaving office in January 2021. These pardons might be given to his sons Eric Trump, Donald Trump Junior and his daughter Ivanka Trump. His also planning to give a pardon to his son-in-law Jared Kushner.

The President has already given the extended powers within his office to former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. Therefore, he can easily extend to others who has breached federal laws and clauses in office. There is several others that might be on the way. As there was plenty of associates who was a part of Trump Campaign 2016, which has been charged by the state for breaking the law. These could easily get pardons by the President too.

It would be easy to speculate that these gentlement might get a Presidential Pardon: Paul Manafort, Richard Gates, Stephen Bannon, Jeff Sessions, Carter Page, George Papadopolous, Roger Stone, Alexander Van Der Zwaan and Richard Pinedo. Nevertheless, his former personal lawyer who betrayed him. Michael Cohen will not be off the hook. However, the ones who has done his bidding. They might get off the hook and get a Presidential Pardon while he still can. That is anticipated, especially after the pardoning of Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn.  

The big gist here… if these people needs a pardon. Then they are admitting guilt. Flynn already stated that he lied and that he didn’t file as a foreign agent. Lt. Gen. Flynn was getting paid by Turkey and not filing the necessary papers to be officially so. Therefore, he coordinated with a foreign power without informing the state. This is why a man like that shouldn’t become a National Security Advisor for the President in the first place. 

This is why this here shows a pattern and what the Trump Presidency has done. The Office of the President and the White House. A White House that started with “lock her up” is now planning to “pardon my own kin and associates”. That is a real change of guard.

The Presidential Pardon gives clemency from Federal Prosecution, but cannot be invoked for state investigations or local investigations. Meaning, the Southern District of New York and the Attorney General of New York (Manhattan) can still prosecute and indict the Trump family members. All the other state attorneys and law enforcement can investigate the persons in question and charge them eventually for crimes. Therefore, the limitations of the pardon sets a standard for the future. 

However, if the President gives these pardons to his family and inner-circle. The people who are receiving it is initially stating their guilt. That they did some crime(s) and criminal conspiracy of some kind. If they didn’t, why did they need a pardon in the first place?

If you are innocent and has nothing to hide. Then you don’t need a pardon. If your not a criminal or haven’t acted with criminal intent. Then there should be no reason to accept a pardon. Since, there is no reason for you to have it.

This is what should shatter the United States. The Trump Family and associates can go free. The peculiar thing will be how they portray it and the reasoning for accepting it. Since it sends a message that they know what they did and that they hope they can get away from possible prosecution.

A pardon is something you need if you have done the deed. If you need the clemency from a criminal charge, then your by default a felon. Which is lucky to be saved by the mercy of the ones offering the pardon and cleaning your criminal record. However, if you don’t have done a crime and haven’t had criminal intent. There shouldn’t be a need for one….

So, by default by giving this to his family and associates. It is a token and showing the world how they operated. Since, they all need a pardon to save themselves. A guilty plea by direct action of accepting the pardon. Initially stating their guilt for the world to see. 

The ironic part is that the Presidential Pardon might not even save them. As the family members and associates might have to answer for crimes on the state level. This shows that there is little to gain here other than proving guilt by association. Peace.

Opinion: Trump doesn’t deserve a pardon

For a President of the calibre of Donald J. Trump. He does not deserve pardon, neither is it righteous. To all the folks he has hurt in his time in office. The way the Trump Administration has operated and worked. It is only right that the head of that government acts accountable. For a man who has stifled any investigation and used the office to get away from prosecution.

Trump has stopped the Congress in their investigations, blocked witnesses and avoided to release documents and testify. The man knows his in the wrong. The White House has breached the Hatch Act so many times. The White House has used foreign policy to earn profits for the Trump Organization. The Trump estates and hotels has been places of trading policies over a secret meeting. While profiting on the business and the deals being made.

This President have issued harsh treatment of civilians, asylum-seekers and minorities. The President have shown no remorse and no concern in putting kids in cages and separating families. This man has had no issues breaching international law and human rights violations. Stop the ICC from investigating practices in Afghanistan. A President dropping bombs all the time in Somalia with no oversight.

Trump needs to answer for sins. The criminal activity, the ones where he has conspired with foreign entities and foreign operatives to ensure victory. The man needs to answer the usage of the office for own personal gains. That is necessary by all accounts. Unless, the US is fine with a open corruption and heist within the oval office. That is all up to them.

This man didn’t care if he traded Syrian bases and the Kurdish allies over a business deal in Turkey. That is what this President does and did it willingly. Giving his Trump Organization funding, while selling the stakes of American army abroad. That is what he has done. This is why he has a failed coup in Venezuela on his hands too. Where he even invited the wanted man on the throne at the State of the Union speech. This is how blatant the man operated.

Trump needs to answer for his misgivings, his lack of action and response to the COVID-19 and Coronavirus. There are so many cases and so many times he could have saved lives, but didn’t act. As the Commander-in-Chief. He could have sheltered more lives, but they weren’t important to him. If they were? He would have used enough of his power to install more Supreme Court justices. Because, he had the energy to do that…

Donald J. Trump needs to answer for his activity. Every action made during his tenure. The ill-will and the breaches of trust. The misuse of office and the corrupt activities done in broad daylight. As he was willing to trade the White House and Congress for some sweet dollars. That was his game. At the same time galvanise his supporters with White Supremacy and racist policies, which needs to be addressed now. Because, some of them will be a brunt on families for generations. Where the kids and parents are lost from each other and cannot live life together. That is all because of what Trump ordered and did.

As President, he was responsible for this. That is his legacy of how he treated people. How a President picked business interests over people’s security to have heath care insurance. That is the sort of man he is. If he has a heart? It is either for money or maybe Ivanka. The rest can sail their own boat. The people is useful to cheer him up, but can drown for all he cares. He wants titles and glories.

He can send the army and brutalize citizens for doing their legal duty of demonstrating. The man can use his office to dismantle and destroy people’s lives, because there is a buck for him in the end. That is the legacy of Trump. He is willing to trade lives over profit. Use foreign operatives to win elections and obstruct justice to overcome litigations.

This is why he needs to answer in the Courts of Law. That is why he needs to spend time to address petitions and cases pending. Why he needs to address the possible tax evasion, wire-fraud and whatever else awaiting him in the courts. Plus a possible of other investigations happening after his time in office. Because, that would be healthy and this time around he cannot block witnesses from testifying. Which he has done deliberately while he was in office.

President Trump doesn’t deserve to pardoned. If he gets pardoned, then you have forgotten about the kids in cages and the Zero Tolerance Policy. A policy he accepted and vouched for. Where he gave no mercy to asylum seekers. The same no mercy he deserves, as he enters the Courts of Law. That is justified and this man doesn’t deserve a bargain. He acted with haste to put other people’s lives in danger. It is time that he answers for that and also pays the price for doing so. Peace.

Opinion: Trump has lost [both his Executive Privilege and leverage]

Without a shadow of a doubt the Democratic Party Presidential Candidate and now President-Elect Joe Biden has won the Presidential Election in 2020. This means that the United States will have another President, than Donald J. Trump from January 2021. Therefore, the man is now in shambles and shock. That’s why is erratic behaviour been worse sine the trickling in of results is not going his way. We can now see that his fall will be brutal.

It isn’t without a reason that he was impeached not to long ago. Secondly, that so many people around him was investigated, charged and indicted. The Trump Campaign of 2016 was filled with people who breached law and was convicted felons for doing so. That’s why the President cannot use a few more technicalities when his time in office is over.

Donald Trump doesn’t have the leverage of the Presidential Office. Which he and his close associates have used at a high rate. The Trump Organizations and the family members has used the Presidency to ensure deals, licences and other agreements to gain millions of dollars. The White House and the Trump Administration have also boosted the other family members and their possible trade agreements too. Even using foreign policy as a trading point to get millions siphoned into the Trump Organization. Therefore, the President loses a vital part of his business strategy. However, I am calling this piece losing leverage.

Trump has less of leverage to pay of loans, fines and litigation costs. The President has to answer to cases pending and awaiting. As the Trump Organization and other connected business are looked into.

Donald Trump is losing not only leverage to salvage his companies and cough up dough to failing businesses. He is losing the “Executive Privilege” which he has used exponentially. That he has used to block people from testifying and also said as President he would be to busy to participate in cases he was involved in. Still, he would have time to visit his estates and golf courses, but not had the time … to answer these cases.

So without leverage and executive privilege the Donald J. Trump will not be as powerful as his been the last four years. He has thwarted things, stifled and let things pending. If the Washington D.C. wants the stench of corruption, international interference and possible breaches of criminal codes done by associates of the President. They should get involved, investigate and get the truth all out. Because, there been enough of shady actions made, which has benefited the President and his allies. These has earned fortunes on using the state as cash-cow. That cannot just be brushed under rug. Now that his not President anymore. He needs to answer to this.

Especially, since he got no Executive Privilege and Leverage to linger on. He has gotten away with it for years. However, now the Tax Returns can be released. The Trump Organization and their businesses can be exposed. This is why they are struggling to cope with the new reality. Because, they have no way to save it.

Now, there is time to unravel it all. The most corrupt President in a long time. The one making Harding look like saint. The man proving that you can actually put the White House sale and trade bargains with everyone. As long as he gets a cut. That is the man that President Trump was and is. A man who has to answer for all of this. Time will tell and we can only smell the coffee. Peace.

Opinion: Bannon is in a long line of Trump associates caught by the law…

Today, there are yet another lackey of President Donald Trump. His campaign team and his near associates. The incumbent President has clearly been around people who are having no trouble breaking the law and bending towards the illegal dens of the world.

The Trump Campaign of 2016 was filled with these and several has already served time. They have also gotten lenient treatment, which others wouldn’t have gotten in the same position. As the Department of Justice worked directly to help the associates of the President. Friends gets favoured and get good “deals” for their loyalty to the President.

So we have seen a dozens of criminal cases and the Southern District of New York (SDNY) is working on several. Today they have charged the last of the three Campaign Managers in the 2016 elections, Stephen Bannon for wire-fraud and other illegal activity. This just show how brazen these people are.

However, it is not only Bannon in the near association of Trump whose been arrested. These are Roger Stone, Paul Manafort, Gen. Michael Flynn, George Papadopolous, Richard Gates, Alex Van Der Zwaan and Michael Cohen. It’s like a collective of people willingly doing destructive things.

Sooner or later, the SDNY might find charges or activities against Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner and others too. Who has used the Trump Organization, Trump Campaign and other ventures to scheme, deal and earn illicit profits during the term of the Presidency and during the campaigns. That wouldn’t be shocking. As everyone around the President is corrupted and using their offices for ill gotten gains. While hoping for a pardon in the moment they do get caught.

That Bannon is charged isn’t shocking anymore. I am just shocked that Corey Lewandowski isn’t charged with something. That Kellyanne Conway isn’t answer for her breaches of the law in Office. That others who has cheated and misused their office during this term haven’t gotten charged or indicted too.

Who knows what Felix Sater and his associates has done with Trump and his organization. Because, he lived in the Trump Tower and there speculations of money laundering operations. Which is still unverified and only speculated about. So, there might be more to the stories through the years.

We clearly, see that the failure of a New York businessman connection with questionable people. His business is known for playing and forging the numbers. Who knows at what scale and what the SDNY investigations finds out. As well, as what they find in the dissolved Trump Foundation. Who else is guilty for crimes and to what extent. Because, there been so many ways the President and his men has been cheating, tricking and misusing his office. Just like he misused his business for profit too.

Therefore, don’t be shocked if more people are falling now that Bannon is indicted. There will be more people in the sphere of Trump that will be hit. It is just a matter of time. Because, these crimes will not be kept a secret forever and the investigations will surface too. After all these years. The reality will come.

We should not be shocked that people around Trump are frauds, stealing and lying. We should be shocked if they didn’t do that. The President does it and the people around him too. Trump is a con-man and the people around him is the same. That is why the law enforcement is indicting them, one-by-one. Today it was Bannon, earlier it was the others. We don’t know who is next, but don’t be shocked if someone in association with Trump get indicted. That is the norm and it continues to be so. Peace.

All the President’s Men: Flynn & Stone “Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free-Card”

I know that the President isn’t the Monopoly Man, but his dealing out “Get-Out-Jail-Free-Card” like him in real life. There is no indication that rule of law matters, neither is the ideal of everyone is equal before the law. The United States of America is a broken, failure of a state. Where voting purge, where police brutality and identity politics are ordinary features.

This compelled with the compromised Department of Justice. Which is a weaponized tool of the White House. Instead of being an independent organization respecting and enforcing the codes of law. That is dream and not the reality in Trump’s America.

That is why the Department of Justice and Attorney General William Barr is willing to trade all honesty, all equal treatment and enforcing it accordingly to protocol. We are seeing that…

That train has left and there is apparently no return of it in sight. The President and his Attorney General is blatant in disregard to the rule of law and enforcing towards their own. This being people who has pleaded guilty, been unregistered foreign agents and so fourth. They are apparently allowed to solicit information during campaigns with foreign actors, which they later lied about meeting. It doesn’t matter where it is from, but the conspiracy to do so for the benefit of a candidate. Should be a thing that is illegal and treated that way. However, since these people did it for the current day President. They can get off the hook.

This is okay, that they are conspiring with foreign powers and using that information to beat their opposition. As later investigation see they are lying to congress and to the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI). If a random bloke from any Ville or Port would do this. Then they would linger in jail like Reality Winner and other leakers. Whistleblowers are prosecuted and arraigned in court.

Stone is getting a pleasant amount of time behind bars for his relationship with the President. The same can be said about Flynn. We can rest assure that the other ones whose associated with the President will get help or a get out of jail free-card. Maybe not Michael Cohen, his former personal lawyer, but expect others to suddenly get out of the penitentiary like Paul Manafort.

The Republican’s can lie to themselves. They can cheat themselves and claim to be the party of rule of law. However, its hard to sell: when you give people who conspired against the state freedom. That is basic … very simple to understand and should be common sense. This is giving immunity to people by giving grace, freedom and extended liberty to the ones who is connected to the President. They can steal, graft and conspire against the state. This they can do for the simple reason: They are buddies and friends of the President.

This are the legal precedence of the United States. The US can never tell dictators that they cannot shield their graft or their criminal friends. For the same reason as the US is now shielding the friends of the President. The US is now allowing illegal activity being done by associates of the President. They got a special number at the Department of Justice. The Trump Administration is directing the Department to them favours. That is really the sickening state of the US.

This is what tyrants and dictators do. They are allowing associates eat, rule with impunity and get away with it. That’s for the same as the associates of Trump. If you know, now you know. The ones showing loyalty to the President. Can get a better treatment and less of stint in jail. That is how corrupt the President is and to what extent he goes. He makes dictators proud for his actions. Since he acts just like they would. However, if they did the same. The US would condemn and even sanction them. Nevertheless, the US will not get any retorts for acting like this. Peace.

Opinion: Stone’s special treatment revealed

Today’s statement by Assistant United States Attorney Aaron S. J. Zelinsky to the House Judiciary Committee was very telling. This was a powerful statement and a needed one. Not that its shocking that an associate of the President would get special treatment. Especially, when we are discussing the hack, the lackey and buddy of the President, Roger Stone. We saw how it went down in Court, but now one of the men writing the sentencing memo. Aaron explains how it happened and he exposed what they did to change the memo.

The President and team is busy obstructing justice, ensuring safe-guard to their men and stopping prosecution of people associated with the President. As that is happening, there are on-going investigations. The House of Representatives are looking into the lenient treatment of Trump associate, campaign aide and Nixonian relic Stone.

What was striking in the statement today was this: “What I heard – repeatedly – was that Roger Stone was being treated differently from any other defendant because of his relationship to the President” (Zelinsky, 23.06.2020).

That says everything, that if your associated or a buddy of the President then you have an advantage. You can break the law, you can do things that are illegal, but you deserve better treatment, because of your association. That is direct corrupt behaviour, not equal justice under the law, but dependent on the relations you have to the Head of State. That is worthy of a Banana Republic, of a tin-pot dictator and well-equipped tyrant.

Zelinsky continued: “I was also told that the acting U.S. Attorney was giving Stone such unprecedentedly favorable treatment because he was “afraid of the President.” (Zelinsky, 23.06.2020). A civil servant, an attorney should work independent from the President, as the attorney should work in accordance with the law and the legal precedence within any given case. It shouldn’t be on merit of the person involved nor the relations the accused has with the head of state. That is just absurd. However, that is how the United States has sunk during the Trump Presidency.

What really proves the outrageous behaviour of the Trump Presidency pressure on the Stone case is this, as the Attorneys first made a memo for sentencing and later someone revised to be favourably to the crony of the President. Just take a look:

Next, the government calculated that Stone received three (3) additional levels because he successfully blocked HPSCI from ever learning about Corsi, his messages and Stone’s many contacts with the Trump Campaign. Stone received an additional two (2) levels for lying to the judge under oath regarding the photo of her with the crosshairs. Two (2) more levels were added because Stone’s efforts to obstruct were extensive in scope. And eight (8) levels were added because Stone threatened to cause physical injury or property damage in order to obstruct justice – the threats to harm Credico. Taken together, these enhancements resulted in a total offense level of 29 points. Since Stone was a first time offender, this corresponded to a Guidelines range of 87-108 months” (Zelinsky, 23.06.2020).

That evening, the Department filed a new memorandum seeking a substantially lower sentence for Stone. No line AUSA signed the filing—which is also something that is virtually unprecedented. The new filing stated that the first memo did not “accurately reflect” the views of the Department of Justice. This new memo muddled the analysis of the appropriate Guidelines range in ways that were contrary to the record and in conflict with Department policy” (Zelinsky, 23.06.2020).

We can see here how things goes and how it benefited the cronies. How it simply rigged the sentencing memo and changed the amount of time for the same crime. They did this deliberately and with full knowledge of why they did it. It was all to serve a man of the President and give him less of time. Even with the DoJ and the AUSA had given a specific amount of time for the acts conducted by Stone.

This proves to what extent the President goes to shield his men and allies. When he does this to Stone and in such a public display. What does he do behind closed doors and in secret? That is what is worrying, as he has had over three years in office and continues to obstruct justice without any consideration with the rule of law. The only thing that matters is himself and his allies. The rest can suffer. Peace.

Philippines: New Anti-Terrorism Law might have some unfortunate consequences…

That the government of the Philippines wants to strengthen its legislation and its power to contain and control terrorists makes sense. Especially with the recent insurgency in Marawi in Mindanao and the Red Brigade there. The Government is within its right to extend its powers, ensure safety of its territory and rules to stop future insurgencies and terror attacks on the Filipino Nation. That is all understandable, however, they should still consider the implications and what a new law does to freedom of expression, liberty and justice for all. That it doesn’t come in conflict with these ideals.

Some of the things that is striking out in this new anti-terrorist law is that it will create a new legal instrument, a new precedence, where appointed top cabinet officials will have the opportunity to participate and issue arrest orders through the Anti-Terror Council (ATC). Meaning, it is lawmakers and technocrats who are finding whose deemed fit for becoming terror suspect and whose associated with terrorist. This is not done by detective or intelligence officers, no, but appointed cronies of the state. That is worrying enough itself.

That the law also stretches the ability to keep people arrested without warrants and eases the means of wire-tapping, surveillance and such. It is surely done in a sense of safeguarding the public, but at the same time. If the ATC somehow deems someone randomly, they can easily arrest someone in the name of terror, allegedly say they are terrorist without a trial keep someone in custody for about 14 days with a possibility of a 10 day extension.

If a person is really unlucky, let’s say a journalist or an activists. Whose suddenly posting a press release or statement from a questionable organization. That the ATC might deem as Terrorist. Than, the person might be charged with 12 years in prison for helping to distribute illegal material and promoting the organization. Even if the intent was only to inform the public and not get people to participate in terrorism. That is what is also dangerous about this law.

It opens up to wormholes like this and it depends on the powers at the ATC and the agencies of the Philippines to set it out and in order. The ideals are good, the steps are positives, we all should strive to combat and defeat terrorism, in all sorts and fashion. That is fine and dandy. However, this legislation is stretching things far and makes it possible to arrest someone on the hunch and on a limb. When, they might was just posting some random tweets or random Facebook posts. They were not doing it malice or with intent to incite terror, but it was from the wrong group. Therefore, they could get into trouble.

That is my worry here. Many parts of the law is reasonable and makes sense. As a sovereign and as a state, you want to have the ability to surveillance and to gather evidence of possible people who wants to commit these sorts of activities. However, when this law is make it so broad and gives huge powers to Council not made-up of intelligence officers nor law enforcement. That opens up the gates for possible political mind-games, where the political enemies becomes terrorists. Even if the only thing they do is to buy rice and flowers for the people of their Barangay.

I hope this get dealt with positively, but this is passing all parts of the Congress, the House of Representatives and the Senate has all agreed upon the articles. It only need the Presidential signature and seal before becoming law. That is why the ATC and whose getting there is important. Because, they will become the Terrorist Hunters and the ones deciding the fate of people. They will be vital in this and have the last word in a way. Peace.