Sessions Refuses to File Criminal Charges Against Corporate Criminals

First published on: http://crooksandliars.com/2017/05/sessions-refuses-file-charges-against

It’s an easy bet that what the Trump administration says and what it does are almost always complete opposites. The word hypocrite comes to my mind, though it seems to miss the point. No, they are much more than that because they pretend to be so moral and just in their claims. They remind me of Tartuffe from Moliere’s play of the same name, the hypocrite, the impostor with his self righteous blatherings.

One day they claim to support women’s health, the next they are slashing all funding to women’s clinics around the world. As they pretend to care about equal rights for all, they are quietly cutting LGBTQ rights in an attempt to make them invisible; much like the clearly offensive way the White House left out the Luxembourg Prime Minister’s husband from the 1st spouses EU picture last week.

Then there was last weeks announcement by White House spokeswoman Kelly Love that, “The Trump Administration has an unwavering commitment to the civil rights of all Americans.” A lovely yet ever so empty collection of words used to brace us for what would be coming in the following announcement: a complete gutting of civil rights departments across all federal government agencies. The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, who audits companies with federal contracts to ensure they are not violating laws against discrimination, is soon to be but a memory. The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed cutting the Environmental Justice Program that assists citizens when there are oil or chemical spills. The Department of Education, Department of Housing and Urban Development and Department of Health and Human Services will all be cutting or slashing their civil rights programs

So when Sessions announced he would be reversing President Obama’s order that eased prosecutions for minor drug charges, and proclaimed with feigned moral conviction that it was the ethical and just action to take, I wondered just how long it would take for him to step knee deep into that giant pile of horseshit. As a reminder, this was his comment:

“Our responsibility is to fulfill our role in a way that accords with the law,
advances public safety, and promotes respect for our legal system. This policy affirms our responsibility to enforce the law, is moral and just, and produces consistency.”

For the record, it took 12 days.

On May 22nd, Citigroup agreed to pay a fine of $97.4 million for knowingly violating banking laws in regards to reporting suspicious activity of money laundering. Citigroup bought Banamex, a Mexican banking company, in 2001. From 2007 – 2012, Banamex USA intentionally hid thousands of money laundering transactions from review. According to the Boston Globe, “As part of the agreement, Banamex USA ‘admitted to criminal violations by willfully failing to maintain an effective anti-money-laundering’ compliance program, the Justice Department said.”

Banamex USA “willfully” committed “criminal” acts. In all, there were $1.3 billion dollars in remittances that should have been flagged for review according to the law. The belief of law officials is that much of this money was from the sale of illegal narcotics.

Yet, Mr. Hard On Drug Offenders – Attorney General Jeff Sessions, has chosen to not seek the harshest charges possible in this case. In fact, he’s completely dismissed all criminal charges against anyone involved. So much for a “moral and just” application of the law. Should he really want to deliver a moral and just decision, he should have fined them the full amount they laundered at the very least.

Tartuffe Sessions can mumble his sanctimonious carefully formed speeches all he wants, but he’s full of it. Once again, the leaders that be have chosen to lock up those people with a few ounces of pot, but refused to hold those making billions from said drug trade to the same standard.

But what did anyone expect but pure hypocrisy from Tartuffe…I mean Jeff Sessions and this administration?

 

Media Covers Sessions’ but not the Protests Against it. Why?

First published on: http://crooksandliars.com/2017/04/media-fails-cover-protests-against-ag

Attorney General Jeff Sessions escaped his elfin tree this past week to spew a stream of offensive, racist comments aimed at our border communities. While the lazy main stream media covered every marble-mouthed utterance of the Disgrace of Alabama, I chose to go down to the border in my home town of San Diego and see what Americans thought of all this race baiting. Oddly enough, they didn’t agree with El Elfo.

For those of you who have never been to San Diego, or any other border town for that matter, you should know that we consider the border and our neighbors to the south to be a part of our community. We’ve lived with each other for centuries. We party, pray and mourn together. We have family and friends on both sides. What happens south of the border, directly affects the north side and vise versa. So when Sessions had the nerve to visit border communities and call them “war zones” and filled with “violent gangs, drug dealers and murders,” members of those communities decided to fight back.

Alliance San Diego not only fights for immigrant rights, but for civil rights for all people, education equity and inclusive democracy. They hosted a rally supporting the border community of San Diego right outside of the port of entry at the exact same time as Sessions was hiding inside. Although they were invited, neither Sessions nor the national media bothered to come and speak to actual citizens of the border. They were only concerned with the opinion of those enforcing Trump’s immigration policies.

In attendance at the rally were leaders and members from Alliance SD, San Diego Human Rights Consortium, Asia Pacific American Labor Alliance, local Muslim and Christian faith leaders and everyday citizens. Reverend Beth Johnson of the Palomar Unitarian Universalist Fellowship warmed up the crowd with some choice words for Sessions and the Trump administration:

“AG Sessions, General Kelly and Trump do not represent what is true for our border. This is a moral issue! It is wrong to denounce and dehumanize our community and to deny their inherit worth and dignity. It is wrong to militarize our border! It is wrong to tear families apart! It is wrong to build a wall! It is wrong to separate our communities!”

Christain Ramirez of Alliance SD brought the crowd home with a rousing personal speech:

“San Diego is a safe city. Days of hyperbolic rhetoric have come to an end.
Sessions’ words are an affront to our dignity and goes against basic ideas of democracy.”

“Let us be clear who is pushing the rhetoric of war in a time of peace!”

“The day will come when the people of the United States stand up!”

“We want to be able to walk to places of worship without worrying about being racially profiled. We want to be able to send our kids to school without worrying about whether they will make it home or not because they were picked up by Border Patrol and deported.”

“This is no longer a movement for immigrant rights, for Latino communities, for the Muslim community or for women and LGBTQ communities! It is now a movement to defend the basic values of democracy!”

Ramirez further stated that he recalled growing up in the San Ysidro area and being arrested by the Border Patrol as he tried to walk to school. He was routinely handcuffed and placed in the back of their vehicles even though he was a United States citizen. He was only 13 or 14 years old and remembered watching his parents and neighbors being arrested by Border Patrol even though they were also citizens.

“I don’t want my son to go through the indignity of being handcuffed simply because of the color of his skin!”

According to Ramirez, Alliance SD has invited Jeff Sessions and Trump numerous times to talks regarding the border communities, but they have never returned their requests. Much like the Trump administration’s ignorance of the border, those Americans who do not reside here are equally as oblivious. But at least many of those Americans can be forgiven their ignorance since their only source of information, the media, refuses to cover the actual people living on the border or admit that in fact American border cities are some of the most safest cities in the country.

The Trump administration is simply race baiting and inventing a boogie man out of the border and immigrants to keep its followers in fear. The media is assisting Trump by giving them a platform to showcase their bigotry while ignoring the facts and the voices of our border communities.

 

Jeff Sessions Getting Rich Filling Private Prisons?

First published on: http://crooksandliars.com/2017/04/sessions-getting-rich-filling-private

It’s more than a conflict of interest. The more people Attorney General Jeff Sessions sends to private prisons, the more money he shoves in his pockets. From announcing he wants federal law enforcement agencies to bust people for a little bit of weed, to ordering federal prosecutors to find ways to convict more immigrants, Sessions is looking for ways to provide more clients to private prisons that are contracted by the federal government.

On Tuesday, Sessions announced orders to expand the prosecution of undocumented workers. Anyone caught crossing the border without inspection will no longer be charged with a misdemeanor and returned to their countries of origin. Each will now be charged with a felony and be required to be formerly deported. This process can require detention anywhere from a week to eighteen months. Plans to increase the number of immigration judges by three-fold and prosecutors are officially under way. If immigrants return after being formerly deported, they will be subject to a felony charge of re-entry after being deportation which can result in a two year prison sentence.

Additionally, Sessions ordered prosecutors to begin charging anyone “harboring” three or more undocumented immigrants with felony harboring statutes. This will mean a father with three family members can now face years of prison time for putting a roof over his families head. The undocumented with fake or stolen ID cards used to enter the U.S. and obtain employment can now be charged with felony document fraud and aggravated identity theft. Time for these charges can be two or more years.

The increase in prosecutions will lead to an increase in convictions. The Trump administration has abandoned the Obama administration’s promise to no longer contract with private prisons. Private prison companies like The GEO Group and CoreCivic Inc. lead the industry and have contracts with the federal government and specifically the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

As Attorney General Sessions fills these private prisons, he is making money. According to his latest financial disclosures required by congress, dated December 23, 2016, he divested of other investments that were found to be in conflict. In these disclosures, he also lists numerous Vanguard funds. Vanguard owns more private prison stock than any other investment management company. None of the Vanguard funds listed below were included in the divestiture.

The latest data of Vanguard funds’ portfolio information is dated February 28, 2017. The following are a list of funds owned by Jeff Sessions that was from Vanguard’s website:

  1. Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Admiral Shares – consists of both GEO Group and CoreCivic, Inc. stocks worth over $164,000,000. Sessions investment value is from $15,001 – $50,000.
  2. Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Admiral Shares – same fund as above, but Sessions lists investment value between $1,001 – $15,000.
  3. Vanguard Small-Cap Index Fund Admiral Shares – consisits of stocks from The GEO Group and CoreCivic, Inc. valued at over $173,500,000. Sessions shows investments valued from $15,000 – $50,000.
  4. Vanguard Total International Stock Index Admiral Shares – contains GEO Holdings Corporation stock valued at over $4,400,000. Sessions owns $1,001 – $15,000 of this fund.

If he still owns these funds, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is making policy that he will financially profit from. This blatant lack of morals and ethics shows once again how Sessions is not fit to be the U.S. Attorney General.

The latest data of Vanguard funds’ portfolio information is dated February 28, 2017. The following are a list of funds owned by Jeff Sessions that was from Vanguard’s website: Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Admiral Shares – consists of both GEO Group and CoreCivic, Inc. stocks worth over $164,000,000. Sessions investment value is from $15,001 – $50,000. Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Admiral Shares – same fund as above, but Sessions lists investment value between $1,001 – $15,000. Vanguard Small-Cap Index Fund Admiral Shares – consisits of stocks from The GEO Group and CoreCivic, Inc. valued at over $173,500,000. Sessions shows investments valued from $15,000 – $50,000. Vanguard Total International Stock Index Admiral Shares – contains GEO Holdings Corporation stock valued at over $4,400,000. Sessions owns $1,001 – $15,000 of this fund. If he still owns these funds, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is making policy that he will financially profit from. This blatant lack of morals and ethics shows once again how Sessions is not fit to be the U.S. Attorney General.

Update: GEO Holdings Corporation is a Japanese company and not part of the GEO Group.