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  1. #3946

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    It was fairly unintentional. But on a thread that is solely dedicated to the downfall of a country by a buffoon, the desecration of the language by us writers should be accepted, in view of what said buffoon has done to it in a more serious manner.
    For Tiny, I simply find that everything he does is so toxic that things are never "Good". They have levels of "Bad, Worse, Worst". So in cases like this, "less worse" becomes operational.
    Use it. Let's see if it catches up.
    Starry starry night

  2. #3947

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Quote Originally Posted by ponchi101 View Post
    Ok. To make it a bit less worse for you: remember where courtesans ended.
    A terrible fate for those women. But it would be fitting for Kellyanne.
    I guess it wasn't what Angela Lansbury hints at in "Liaisons" with villas, expensive art and jewelry?
    "Even if you dance for your enemy on the rock, he will accuse you of splashing water on him." ~ African Proverb




  3. #3948

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    You know how Tiny is running around saying Queen Elizabeth II never had such a good time with any other visitor than him?

    Ronald Lebow
    @RonLebow
    Jun 10
    TRUTH: Someone asked "Why do some British people not like Donald Trump? Nate White, articulate and witty writer from England, wrote this magnificent and brilliant response:

    "A few things spring to mind.
    Trump lacks certain qualities which the British traditionally esteem. 1/

    For instance, he has no class, no charm, no coolness, no credibility, no compassion, no wit, no warmth, no wisdom, no subtlety, no sensitivity, no self-awareness, no humility, no honour and no grace - all qualities ..with which his predecessor Mr. Obama was generously blessed. 2/

    So for us, the stark contrast does rather throw Trump’s limitations into embarrassingly sharp relief. Plus, we like a laugh. And while Trump may be laughable, he has never once said anything wry, witty or even faintly amusing - not once, ever. 3/

    I don’t say that rhetorically, I mean it quite literally: not once, not ever. And that fact is particularly disturbing to the British sensibility - for us, to lack humour is almost inhuman.
    4/

    But with Trump, it’s a fact. He doesn’t even seem to understand what a joke is - his idea of a joke is a crass comment, an illiterate insult, a casual act of cruelty.

    Trump is a troll. And like all trolls, he is never funny and he never laughs; he only crows or jeers. 5/

    And scarily, he doesn’t just talk in crude, witless insults - he actually thinks in them. His mind is a simple bot-like algorithm of petty prejudices and knee-jerk nastiness. There is never any under-layer of irony, complexity, nuance or depth. It’s all surface. 6/

    Some Americans might see this as refreshingly upfront. Well, we don’t. We see it as having no inner world, no soul. And in Britain we traditionally side with David, not Goliath. All our heroes are plucky underdogs: Robin Hood, Dick Whittington, Oliver Twist. 7/

    Trump is neither plucky, nor an underdog. He is the exact opposite of that.
    He’s not even a spoiled rich-boy, or a greedy fat-cat. He’s more a fat white slug. A Jabba the Hutt of privilege. And worse, he is that most unforgivable of all things to the British: a bully. 8/

    That is, except when he is among bullies; then he suddenly transforms into a snivelling sidekick instead. There are unspoken rules to this stuff - the Queensberry rules of basic decency - and he breaks them all. He punches downwards - which a gentleman should, would, could 8/

    never do - and every blow he aims is below the belt. He particularly likes to kick the vulnerable or voiceless - and he kicks them when they are down.
    More to come. 9/

    So the fact that a significant minority - perhaps a third - of Americans look at what he does, listen to what he says, and then think 'Yeah, he seems like my kind of guy’ is a matter of some confusion and no little distress to British people, given that:
    10/

    Americans are supposed to be nicer than us, and mostly are.
    You don't need a particularly keen eye for detail to spot a few flaws in the man. This last point is what especially confuses and dismays British people, and many other people too; his faults seem pretty hard to miss.11/

    After all, it’s impossible to read a single tweet, or hear him speak a sentence or two, without staring deep into the abyss. He turns being artless into an art form; he is a Picasso of pettiness; a Shakespeare of shit. His faults are fractal: even his flaws have flaws, 12/

    God knows there have always been stupid people in the world, and plenty of nasty people too. But rarely has stupidity been so nasty, or nastiness so stupid. He makes Nixon look trustworthy and George W look smart. 13/


    In fact, if Frankenstein decided to make a monster assembled entirely from human flaws - he would make a Trump.
    And a remorseful Doctor Frankenstein would clutch out big clumpfuls of hair and scream in anguish:

    'My God… what… have… I… created? 14/

    If being a t*at was a TV show, Trump would be the boxed set.”

    End of a brilliant and so quotable summation of one English writer’s view from across the pond that resonated with me on many levels. 15/ end
    "Even if you dance for your enemy on the rock, he will accuse you of splashing water on him." ~ African Proverb




  4. #3949

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Ryan Goodman
    @rgoodlaw

    Blockbuster story buried in this NYT report.

    Pentagon, intelligence officials fear they cannot trust Trump enough to brief him fully on new US cyber operation against Russia for fear he will "countermand it or discuss it with foreign officials" as he did before with Russians.



    This is almost at the end of the article

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/15/u...ssia-grid.html
    "Even if you dance for your enemy on the rock, he will accuse you of splashing water on him." ~ African Proverb




  5. #3950

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Deutsche Bank Faces Criminal Investigation for Potential Money-Laundering Lapses
    By David Enrich, Ben Protess and William K. Rashbaum
    June 19, 2019

    Federal authorities are investigating whether Deutsche Bank complied with laws meant to stop money laundering and other crimes, the latest government examination of potential misconduct at one of the world’s largest and most troubled banks, according to seven people familiar with the inquiry.

    The investigation includes a review of Deutsche Bank’s handling of so-called suspicious activity reports that its employees prepared about possibly problematic transactions, including some linked to President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, according people close to the bank and others familiar with the matter.

    The criminal investigation into Deutsche Bank is one element of several separate but overlapping government examinations into how illicit funds flow through the American financial system, said five of the people, who were not authorized to speak publicly about the inquiries. Several other banks are also being investigated.

    The F.B.I. recently contacted the lawyer for a Deutsche Bank whistle-blower, Tammy McFadden, who publicly criticized the company’s anti-money-laundering systems, according to the lawyer, Brian McCafferty.

    Ms. McFadden, a former compliance specialist at the bank, told The New York Times last month that she had flagged transactions involving Mr. Kushner’s family company in 2016, but that bank managers decided not to file the suspicious activity report she prepared. Some of her colleagues had similar experiences in 2017 involving transactions in the accounts of Mr. Trump’s legal entities, although it was not clear whether the F.B.I. was examining the bank’s handling of those transactions.

    The same federal agent who contacted Ms. McFadden’s lawyer also participated in interviews of the son of a deceased Deutsche Bank executive, William S. Broeksmit. Agents told the son, Val Broeksmit, that the Deutsche Bank investigation began with an inquiry into the bank’s work for Russian money launderers and had since expanded to cover a broader array of potential misconduct at the bank and at other financial institutions. One element is the banks’ possible roles in a vast money-laundering scandal at Danish lender Danske Bank, according to people briefed on the investigation.


    The broader scope of the investigations and many details of precisely what is under scrutiny are unclear, and it is not known whether the inquiries will result in criminal charges. In addition to the F.B.I., the Justice Department’s Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section in Washington, and the United States attorney’s offices in Manhattan and Brooklyn are conducting the investigations. Representatives for the agencies declined to comment.

    Deutsche Bank has said that it is cooperating with government investigations and that it had been taking steps to improve its anti-money-laundering systems.

    The congressional investigations are focused on Deutsche Bank’s close relationship with Mr. Trump and his family. Over the past two decades, it was the only mainstream financial institution consistently willing to do business with Mr. Trump, who had a history of defaulting on loans. The bank lent him a total of more than $2 billion, about $350 million of which was outstanding when he was sworn in as president.

    (...)

    The Justice Department has been investigating Deutsche Bank since 2015, when agents were examining its role in laundering billions of dollars for wealthy Russians through a scheme known as mirror trading. Customers would use the bank to convert Russian rubles into dollars and euros via a complicated series of stock trades in Europe and the United States.

    In early 2017, federal and state regulators in the United States and British authorities imposed hundreds of millions of dollars in civil penalties on Deutsche Bank for that misconduct, but prosecutors never brought a criminal case against the bank. That led some senior Deutsche Bank executives to believe they were in the clear, according to people familiar with their thinking.

    By last fall, though, federal agents were investigating a wider range of anti-money-laundering lapses and other possible misconduct at the bank.

    F.B.I. agents met this year with Val Broeksmit, whose father was a senior Deutsche Bank executive who committed suicide in January 2014. Mr. Broeksmit said he provided the agents with internal bank documents and other materials that he had retrieved from his father’s personal email accounts.

    Until his death, William Broeksmit sat on the oversight board of a large Deutsche Bank subsidiary in the United States, Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas, which regulators have criticized for having weak anti-money-laundering systems.


    There is no indication that Kushner Companies is under investigation. The company said any allegations regarding its relationship with Deutsche Bank that involved money laundering were false. A Trump Organization spokeswoman said that she had no knowledge of any Deutsche Bank transactions being flagged.

    The federal Bank Secrecy Act requires financial institutions to alert the government if they suspect that transactions involve criminal proceeds or are being used for illegal purposes. Banks can face civil or criminal penalties for failing to file reports about transactions that are found to be illegal. In recent years, banks like JPMorgan Chase and HSBC have incurred such penalties.

    Banks argue that when they err on the side of reporting potential problems, they end up flooding the government with false leads.

    Former Deutsche Bank employees, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told The Times that the company had pushed them to rush their reviews of transactions and that managers sometimes created obstacles that discouraged them from filing suspicious activity reports.

    Deutsche Bank has scrambled to toughen its anti-money-laundering procedures.

    Deutsche Bank also recently sent letters to hundreds of companies, warning that they could be cut off from the bank’s services if they did not swiftly provide up-to-date information about the sources of their money and the names of their business partners, according to bank employees who saw the letters. Deutsche Bank officials said the letters, first reported by the Financial Times, were part of their efforts to comply with “know your customer” rules, a crucial component of any bank’s anti-money-laundering efforts.


    In Jacksonville, Deutsche Bank’s anti-financial-crime staff works in a white, three-story building surrounded by palm trees. The F.B.I. has a field office just down the road, clearly visible from the bank’s campus.

    Bank employees recently have taken to joking that when the F.B.I. raids their offices, they will be able to see the agents coming.


    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/19/b...ing-trump.html
    "Even if you dance for your enemy on the rock, he will accuse you of splashing water on him." ~ African Proverb




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