Joe is telling the truth. He expects satan to elect him. In his mind.
Joe tells voters he and barak like bath houses. People should have bathahouses
Joe is telling the truth. He expects satan to elect him. In his mind.
Joe tells voters he and barak like bath houses. People should have bathahouses
Today, I voted.
Don Bradley 10-31-20
I voted today...against:
I also voted, today, for:
You are all in my prayers, daily. Some I know, many I do not. But, you the readers of these sites, be blessed by the Most High YHVH for seeking and living, the truth.
And in a single moment, the whole leftist, gender assignment blather explodes in a million pieces on the altar of reason and truth...DB
A cop hilariously roasted a leftist protester during recent unrest in Seattle after the demonstrator demanded to deal with a female officer, to which the cop responded, “How do you know they don’t identify as female?”
The video clip begins with a confrontation between what appears to be two female protesters and two male officers.
“Shut the fuck up, you’re really fucking pushing it, you piece of shit!” the protester yells at the cops before appearing to spit at them.
Although it’s difficult to tell what is happening, the cops then appear to arrest and handcuff one of the women as her friend yells, “Don’t touch her!”
“Get a female police officer now, I am demanding you get a female police officer now!” she adds.
“How do you know they don’t identify as female?” responds the cop.
"How do you know that officer doesn't identify as female?" pic.twitter.com/tmN4Goh18l— Paul Joseph Watson (@PrisonPlanet) October 30, 2020
“What? What did you just ask me?” the protester says, baffled.
“You’re assuming those officers genders,” the cops responds.
Respondents to the clip enjoyed the roast.
“I love how at the end they say fuck in such a defeated voice knowing damn well it’s thanks to their bullshit that people can throw that card,” commented one.
“Absolutely brilliant. You could hear her brain short-circuit,” remarked another.
“Well it is Seattle after all. He may be honestly asking the question,” said another.
A second laptop belonging to Hunter Biden, son of former Vice President Joe Biden, was reportedly seized in February during a raid on a psychiatrist by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Hunter Biden was reportedly not the target of the raid.
NBC News first reported the best Friday afternoon at the end of an article in which it defended its reporting — or lack thereof — about the emails on an abandoned laptop, which purportedly connect Joe Biden to his son’s businesses.
The first laptop was seized by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in December 2019.
NBC reported on the second:
If [Hunter Biden] did leave the machine in Delaware, it would have marked at least the second time he has left behind a laptop.
According to two people familiar with the matter, a different Hunter Biden laptop landed in the custody of the DEA in February when they executed a search warrant on the Massachusetts office of a psychiatrist accused of professional misconduct. The psychiatrist has not been charged with a crime.
Hunter Biden was not a target of the search or the investigation, and his lawyer ultimately got his laptop back. It’s not clear why his computer was left in the doctor’s office.
The Washington Examiner expanded on NBC’s reporting:
Sources told NBC News that the device belonging to the 50-year-old son of former Vice President Joe Biden, who is now a presidential candidate, was taken into custody by the DEA in February while executing a search warrant in the Massachusetts office of a psychiatrist who was accused of professional misconduct.
That former celebrity psychiatrist, Keith Ablow, saw his license suspended after he faced allegations of sexually exploiting patients and illegally diverting prescription drugs. Ablow has denied the allegations and has not been charged with any crime.
The report from NBC on Friday said Hunter Biden was not a target of the search or the investigation, and his lawyer got the laptop back. It remains unclear why the device was there in the first place.
A lawyer for Hunter Biden did not immediately return a request for comment. The Washington Examiner also reached out to the DEA for comment. Hunter Biden has struggled with substance abuse. He was discharged from the U.S. Navy in 2013 after testing positive for cocaine.
Data and files on the original laptop, left at a repair store in Wilmington, Delaware, purportedly connect Hunter Biden to it.Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News
Our Spiritual World: Please pray today, October 31, 2020: Sunset or Sunrise. It's up to us. For today, our prayers are most necessary to effect the outcome of not only this nation, America, bu...
Leftist protest groups plot election day coup aided by the Democrat Party, Federal employees & Intelligence contractors.
– They plan to shut down & take over Washington D.C. starting Nov. 4th until inauguration day to force Trump out of the White House.
(@Millie__Weaver) October 29, 2020
Leftist groups plot election day coup aided by the Democrat Party, federal employees and intelligence contractors. They plan to shut down and take over Washington D.C. starting Nov. 4th until inauguration day to force President Trump out of the White House.
An email thread entitled “Engagement” from June 2011 reveals a Hunter Biden business associate – Sean Conlon – telling the former Veep’s son: “we need to get these guys to an event or something where they get to just formally meet your Dad. For follow on they can talk to Chief of Staff.”
In full, the e-mail leveraging a meeting with Joe Biden in exchange for “more bonds to move” reads:
“So we have engagement letter if they get other 10 bonds they have a face value of 10b. While it is far fetched Devon said he talked to his professor and these get traded. We get 10% in fees. We need to get these guys to an event or something where they get to just formally meet your Dad. For follow on they can talk to Chief of Staff. Let me know how soon we can do that. V brief. If Nagi get that done we get more bonds to move. Regards your hard working partner in Positano! Sean”
Per subsequent e-mails, “each bond is worth over $2.1 billion.”
The e-mail came less than 30 minutes after Hunter Biden inquired “what do we need to do moving forward” – his response to Conlon forwarding an e-mail with the payout configuration for a deal accompanied by “need to discuss.”
Hunter Biden’s longtime business partner Devon Archer later responded to Conlon forwarding him the email thread insisting he was “in” on the “interesting” deal despite him finding it “difficult to imagine working out.”
While it remains unclear whether or not the meeting and follow-up arrangements with Biden and his Chief of Staff materialized, the unearthed emails reveal how the Vice President was used as a point of leverage in his son’s business dealings. Yet again.
The family of the Delaware shop owner who says he came into possession of a laptop purportedly belonging to Hunter Biden first tried to turn over the computer to the FBI in summer 2019 but was rebuffed, only to have agents return months later during President Trump's impeachment proceedings, his lawyer said Thursday night.
In a lengthy statement to Just the News, attorney Brian Della Rocca provided a detailed timeline of the actions his client, John Paul Mac Isaac, says he took in trying to get authorities to investigate the laptop.
The lawyer also decried public figures on both sides of the aisle for politicizing the episode and for attacking the Delaware computer repairman without having the facts.
Mac Isaac "unwittingly became the target of a smear campaign by doing what he thought was right," Della Rocca said. "John Paul is not a right-wing fanatic, nor is he a Russian hacker."
In the statement that was originally drafted to be an op-ed, Della Rocca made several new revelations about the laptop that has stirred worldwide political intrigue on the eve of the American presidential election, an FBI investigation, and a news media and social media censorship campaign. Among the revelations:
You can read the lawyer's full statement here:
Three people familiar with the matter told Just the News on Thursday that the FBI has an ongoing investigation into business transactions involving firms associated with Hunter Biden and other business associates.
The investigation began in 2019 around the time the FBI followed up on Mac Isaac's concerns and has since expanded to issues raised by an IRS whistleblower complaint filed a year ago. The probe got new evidence in recent days when Hunter Biden's former business partner Tony Bobulinski turned over documents and other materials during an FBI interview, one person with knowledge of the case said.
The sources, who spoke only on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the investigation publicly, said no decisions have been made about whether wrongdoing occurred or whether charges are warranted against any person or institution.
Here are key excerpts from Della Rocca's statement:
Who is John Paul Mac Isaac?
"By way of background, John Paul has owned his shop for over ten years now. Prior to that, John Paul was the 'Lead Genius' at the Apple Store in Littleton, Colo., and New Castle, Del. Once, while employed by Apple, he found himself in a situation where, while fixing a customer's iMac, he came across seemingly illegal material. He followed protocol and contacted the authorities. No one questioned John Paul's ethics then."
How did the alleged Hunter Biden laptop come into Mac Isaac's possession?
"Fast-forward to April 12, 2019 when a man claiming to be Hunter Biden walked into his shop. While John Paul was pleased that someone of Hunter Biden's notoriety was in his shop, he did not question why Hunter Biden was there. In fact, Hunter Biden had been referred to John Paul's shop. John Paul is well respected in the community and it would not have been uncommon for his patrons to refer others to his shop. John Paul provided a solution for one of Hunter Biden's three laptops on the spot. Another laptop was a complete write-off but the third laptop required more significant intervention. That laptop remained in the shop with John Paul. Hunter Biden returned two days later with an external hard drive to which John Paul would transfer the information.
According to John Paul, recovering the data was difficult because of the significant liquid damage to the drive. He would boot the computer and transfer as much as he could before the computer shut down. Then, he would boot up the computer again, verify what was copied, and then transfer more data until the computer shut down again. This process repeated several times. During this process, John Paul saw certain pieces of information but, at the time, he did not think anything of it. Instead, John Paul completed the work and contacted Hunter Biden to let him know. Hunter Biden never responded. As requested by Hunter Biden, a secure payment request was sent in an email but was never paid. John Paul contacted him at least one more time but Hunter Biden never responded. The policy of the shop is that items not picked up within 90 days of the completion of the services will be treated as abandoned property."
A first effort to turn over the computer contents to the FBI is turned away
"Around mid-July of 2019, news of Hunter Biden's business dealings with the Ukraine were coming more into focus and John Paul started to get uncomfortable with the information he had seen. He was unsure if the hard drive contained information pertinent to the legal investigation.
At that point, he reached out to his father, a retired Colonel in the U.S. Air Force, for advice about what he should do. They both decided that going to the FBI and handing over the Mac and the drive was their best course of action. Soon thereafter, John Paul's father took a copy of the hard drive to an FBI field office in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The FBI turned John Paul's father away."
A return visit from the FBI
"In mid-October of 2019, an FBI Agent reached out to Colonel Mac Isaac and wanted to discuss the Mac and drive. At that point, Colonel Mac Isaac passed along John Paul's contact information. The FBI then reached out to John Paul and met him at his house to discuss John Paul's concerns. On December 9, 2019, the FBI served a Subpoena on John Paul for the computer, the hard drive, and all related paperwork. He willingly gave it to the FBI and was happy to see it go."
How the laptop’s existence became public?
"Out of an abundance of caution, John Paul made a copy of the drive in case he was ever thrown under the bus as a result of what he knew. As John Paul watched the impeachment trial, he wondered why there was no reference to the information he had provided to the FBI. As a result, starting in February of 2020 and until July of 2020, John Paul reached out to several members of Congress to notify them of what he had in his possession. His requests fell on deaf ears.
Out of frustration, in the beginning of September, John Paul reached out to someone he thought would be able to provide the information directly to the President. That person was Rudy Giuliani. A day after John Paul reached out to Giuliani's office, Robert Costello, Rudy Giuliani's lawyer, contacted John Paul to discuss the information and John Paul's concerns.
On September 24, 2020, John Paul then submitted information about the drive to Senator Ron Johnson through the whistleblower link on Senator Johnson's website. After that submission and while Giuliani's office was still trying to verify the information, Senator Johnson released the Senate report on the Biden business dealings."
What Mac Isaac claims to know for certain:
1. "We know it is Hunter Biden's laptop because we have his signature on the Repair Authorization and Hunter Biden's attorney has reached out to John Paul about the computer."
2. "Hunter Biden never returned to retrieve the information rendering it abandoned property or, in other words, junk. We know that once you throw something into the trash, you relinquish your privacy rights to it, which is why so many investigations include a search of a person's trash."
3. "The FBI confiscated the computer and the external hard drive and left John Paul with a receipt."
4. "The information on the drive was leaked by someone prior to the New York Post exposé. John Paul has not released any information as he is cooperating with law enforcement and to do so could hurt the investigation."
"We do not know if all emails released by the New York Post were actually on the hard drive. We do not know if the initial leak was from Senator Johnson's office, from Rudy Giuliani himself, or from somewhere else."
The fallout from Mac Isaac’s actions
"He was trying to get the information to law enforcement and, in doing so, became a victim of politics. Although he is receiving support from many Americans, he is also the subject of death threats and will likely be out of business as a result of this whole affair. This take no prisoners approach to politics is where the problem lies — on both sides of the political aisle. The rest of us can easily get caught up in the information being presented as if it is fact when, in reality, much of what we hear or read is not."
"… The problem is not that John Paul turned over the information to those he believed he could trust, it is that politics today seems to revel in sensation and ignores the collateral damage left in its wake. Not only are our elected officials seemingly happy to obfuscate the facts in order to attack their opponents, they are also perfectly willing to throw everyday Americans under the bus for their own political gain."
Frustration with the media, social media
"Instead of reporting on the matter, news outlets are making the decision themselves as to the veracity of the claims about Hunter Biden's laptop. If you are an avid follower of CNN or Politico, you have already been led to believe that John Paul is a part of an overall Russian disinformation campaign.
"Twitter and Facebook have taken it upon themselves to relegate this story to a level equal to that of conspiracy theories. The actions by these social media platforms further hurt John Paul's reputation by advancing the notion that he is a part of a Russian disinformation campaign."
GET IT? GET IT? GET IT? GET IT? GET IT? GET IT? GET IT? GET IT? GET IT? GET IT?
The policy change comes amid reports of Mailchimp summarily deactivating the accounts of independent news outlets SGTreport and Press for Truth, according to Reclaim The Net.
GET THIS: If you think for a SECOND the fascist big tech co's aren't all COLLUDING to SILENCE US:— SGTreport (@SGTreport) October 19, 2020
On 10-15 @YouTube "suspended" BOTH SGT Report YT channels severing my ability to reach 745K people. Now @Mailchimp just deactivated my account and locked up my email list. @HawleyMO pic.twitter.com/sGBvc5FgoF
Press for Truth's Dan Dicks says he no longer has access to thousands of emails subscribers he's accumulated for years, as he can't access his account.
"I feel like that’s my data," said Dicks. "I was using it as a hedge against the coming censorship and they just pulled the plug on me there."
According to SGTreport, their email was "locked up" as a result of the termination.
As Reclaim The Net notes:
The mention of “important” events, etc., and the message around them being protected in this way is shorthand for political issues – but declaring Mailchimp’s right to ban content “in sole discretion” clearly spells out and cements the arbitrariness of it all.
With such rules in place, the New York Post – who recently broke the story about Joe Biden’s meddling in Ukraine’s affairs on behalf of his son, which was quickly labeled as “misinformation” – would not have the ability to use email marketing.
- Were you aware that Hunter and his associates have been under FBI investigation since last year, revealing your being labeled a CIA"asset"?
- How many times did you meet with Tony Bobulinski?
- Have you ever met with any of your son’s business associates?
- Are any of these emails not authentic?
- Why did Rob Walker say Bobulinski could burn all of us?
- Why do you refer do black people as "walnut sauce" and "nigger sauce?" What do these terms mean?
- Do you, Joe Biden, deny that you were making business decisions about this foreign business venture?
- Were you, Joe Biden, in fact, a beneficiary… to receive a 10 percent stake in the deal [with a Chinese energy company] and 50% of all deals since 1992?
I am posting here the most recent draft of my article about Joe and Hunter Biden - the last one seen by Intercept editors before telling me that they refuse to publish it absent major structural changes involving the removal of all sections critical of Joe Biden, leaving only a narrow article critiquing media outlets. I will also, in a separate post, publish all communications I had with Intercept editors surrounding this article so you can see the censorship in action and, given the Intercept’s denials, decide for yourselves (this is the kind of transparency responsible journalists provide, and which the Intercept refuses to this day to provide regarding their conduct in the Reality Winner story). This draft obviously would have gone through one more round of proof-reading and editing by me - to shorten it, fix typos, etc - but it’s important for the integrity of the claims to publish the draft in unchanged form that Intercept editors last saw, and announced that they would not “edit” but completely gut as a condition to publication:
An attempt to assess the importance of the known evidence, and a critique of media lies to protect their favored candidate, could not be published at The Intercept
Publication by the New York Post two weeks ago of emails from Hunter Biden's laptop, relating to Vice President Joe Biden's work in Ukraine, and subsequent articles from other outlets concerning the Biden family's pursuit of business opportunities in China, provoked extraordinary efforts by a de facto union of media outlets, Silicon Valley giants and the intelligence community to suppress these stories.
One outcome is that the Biden campaign concluded, rationally, that there is no need for the front-running presidential candidate to address even the most basic and relevant questions raised by these materials. Rather than condemn Biden for ignoring these questions -- the natural instinct of a healthy press when it comes to a presidential election -- journalists have instead led the way in concocting excuses to justify his silence.
After the Post’s first article, both that newspaper and other news outlets have published numerous other emails and texts purportedly written to and from Hunter reflecting his efforts to induce his father to take actions as Vice President beneficial to the Ukrainian energy company Burisma, on whose board of directors Hunter sat for a monthly payment of $50,000, as well as proposals for lucrative business deals in China that traded on his influence with his father.
Individuals included in some of the email chains have confirmed the contents' authenticity. One of Hunter’s former business partners, Tony Bubolinski, has stepped forward on the record to confirm the authenticity of many of the emails and to insist that Hunter along with Joe Biden's brother Jim were planning on including the former Vice President in at least one deal in China. And GOP pollster Frank Luntz, who appeared in one of the published email chains, appeared to confirm the authenticity as well, though he refused to answer follow-up questions about it.
Thus far, no proof has been offered by Bubolinski that Biden ever consummated his participation in any of those discussed deals. The Wall Street Journal says that it found no corporate records reflecting that a deal was finalized and that "text messages and emails related to the venture that were provided to the Journal by Mr. Bobulinski, mainly from the spring and summer of 2017, don’t show either Hunter Biden or James Biden discussing a role for Joe Biden in the venture."
But nobody claimed that any such deals had been consummated -- so the conclusion that one had not been does not negate the story. Moreover, some texts and emails whose authenticity has not been disputed state that Hunter was adamant that any discussions about the involvement of the Vice President be held only verbally and never put in writing.
Beyond that, the Journal's columnist Kimberly Strassel reviewed a stash of documents and "found correspondence corroborates and expands on emails recently published by the New York Post," including ones where Hunter was insisting that it was his connection to his father that was the greatest asset sought by the Chinese conglomerate with whom they were negotiating. The New York Times on Sunday reached a similar conclusion: while no documents prove that such a deal was consummated, "records produced by Mr. Bobulinski show that in 2017, Hunter Biden and James Biden were involved in negotiations about a joint venture with a Chinese energy and finance company called CEFC China Energy," and "make clear that Hunter Biden saw the family name as a valuable asset, angrily citing his 'family’s brand' as a reason he is valuable to the proposed venture."
These documents also demonstrate, reported the Times, "that the countries that Hunter Biden, James Biden and their associates planned to target for deals overlapped with nations where Joe Biden had previously been involved as vice president." Strassel noted that "a May 2017 'expectations' document shows Hunter receiving 20% of the equity in the venture and holding another 10% for 'the big guy'—who Mr. Bobulinski attests is Joe Biden." And the independent journalist Matt Taibbi published an article on Sunday with ample documentation suggesting that Biden's attempt to replace a Ukranian prosecutor in 2015 benefited Burisma.
All of these new materials, the authenticity of which has never been disputed by Hunter Biden or the Biden campaign, raise important questions about whether the former Vice President and current front-running presidential candidate was aware of efforts by his son to peddle influence with the Vice President for profit, and also whether the Vice President ever took actions in his official capacity with the intention, at least in part, of benefitting his son's business associates. But in the two weeks since the Post published its initial story, a union of the nation's most powerful entities, including its news media, have taken extraordinary steps to obscure and bury these questions rather than try to provide answers to them.
The initial documents, claimed the New York Post, were obtained when the laptops containing them were left at a Delaware repair shop with water damage and never picked up, allowing the owner to access its contents and then turn them over to both the FBI and a lawyer for Trump advisor Rudy Giuliani. The repair store owner confirmed this narrative in interviews with news outlets and then (under penalty of prosecution) to a Senate Committee; he also provided the receipt purportedly signed by Hunter. Neither Hunter nor the Biden campaign has denied these claims.
Publication of that initial New York Post story provoked a highly unusual censorship campaign by Facebook and Twitter. Facebook, through a long-time former Democratic Party operative, vowed to suppress the story pending its “fact-check,” one that has as of yet produced no public conclusions. And while Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey apologized for Twitter’s handling of the censorship and reversed the policy that led to the blocking of all links the story, the New York Post, the nation’s fourth-largest newspaper, continues to be locked out of its Twitter account, unable to post as the election approaches, for almost two weeks.
After that initial censorship burst from Silicon Valley, whose workforce and oligarchs have donated almost entirely to the Biden campaign, it was the nation's media outlets and former CIA and other intelligence officials who took the lead in constructing reasons why the story should be dismissed, or at least treated with scorn. As usual for the Trump era, the theme that took center stage to accomplish this goal was an unsubstantiated claim about the Kremlin responsibility for the story.
Numerous news outlets, including the Intercept, quickly cited a public letter signed by former CIA officials and other agents of the security state claiming that the documents have the “classic trademarks" of a “Russian disinformation” plot. But, as media outlets and even intelligence agencies are now slowly admitting, no evidence has ever been presented to corroborate this assertion. On Friday, the New York Times reported that “no concrete evidence has emerged that the laptop contains Russian disinformation” and the paper said even the FBI has “acknowledged that it had not found any Russian disinformation on the laptop.”
The Washington Post on Sunday published an op-ed -- by Thomas Rid, one of those centrists establishmentarian professors whom media outlets routinely use to provide the facade of expert approval for deranged conspiracy theories -- that contained this extraordinary proclamation: "We must treat the Hunter Biden leaks as if they were a foreign intelligence operation — even if they probably aren't."
Even the letter from the former intelligence officials cited by The Intercept and other outlets to insinuate that this was all part of some “Russian disinformation” scheme explicitly admitted that “we do not have evidence of Russian involvement,” though many media outlets omitted that crucial acknowledgement when citing the letter in order to disparage the story as a Kremlin plot:
Despite this complete lack of evidence, the Biden campaign adopted this phrase used by intelligence officials and media outlets as its mantra for why the materials should not be discussed and why they would not answer basic questions about them. “I think we need to be very, very clear that what he's doing here is amplifying Russian misinformation," said Biden Deputy Campaign Manager Kate Bedingfield about the possibility that Trump would raise the Biden emails at Thursday night’s debate. Biden’s senior advisor Symone Sanders similarly warned on MSNBC: “if the president decides to amplify these latest smears against the vice president and his only living son, that is Russian disinformation."
The few mainstream journalists who tried merely to discuss these materials have been vilified. For the crime of simply noting it on Twitter that first day, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman had her name trend all morning along with the derogatory nickname “MAGA Haberman.” CBS News’ Bo Erickson was widely attacked even by his some in the media simply for asking Biden what his response to the story was. And Biden himself refused to answer, accusing Erickson of spreading a "smear."
That it is irresponsible and even unethical to mention these documents became a pervasive view in mainstream journalism. The NPR Public Editor, in an anazing statement representative of much of the prevailing media mentality, explicitly justified NPR’s refusal to cover the story on the ground that “we do not want to waste our time on stories that are not really stories . . . [or] waste the readers’ and listeners’ time on stories that are just pure distractions.”
— NPR Public Editor (@NPRpubliceditor) October 22, 2020
To justify her own show’s failure to cover the story, 60 Minutes’ Leslie Stahl resorted to an entirely different justification. “It can’t be verified,” the CBS reporter claimed when confronted by President Trump in an interview about her program’s failure to cover the Hunter Biden documents. When Trump insisted there were multiple ways to verify the materials on the laptop, Stahl simply repeated the same phrase: “it can’t be verified.”
After the final presidential debate on Thursday night, a CNN panel mocked the story as too complex and obscure for anyone to follow -- a self-fulfilling prophecy given that, as the network's media reporter Brian Stelter noted with pride, the story has barely been mentioned either on CNN or MSNBC. As the New York Times noted on Friday: "most viewers of CNN and MSNBC would not have heard much about the unconfirmed Hunter Biden emails.... CNN’s mentions of “Hunter” peaked at 20 seconds and MSNBC’s at 24 seconds one day last week."
On Sunday, CNN's Christiane Amanpour barely pretended to be interested in any journalism surrounding the story, scoffing during an interview at requests from the RNC's Elizabeth Harrington to cover the story and verify the documents by telling her: "We're not going to do your work for you." Watch how the U.S.'s most mainstream journalists are openly announcing their refusal to even consider what these documents might reflect about the Democratic front-runner:
These journalists are desperate not to know. As Taibbi wrote on Sunday about this tawdry press spectacle: " The least curious people in the country right now appear to be the credentialed news media, a situation normally unique to tinpot authoritarian societies."
All of those excuses and pretexts — emanating largely from a national media that is all but explicit in their eagerness for Biden to win — served for the first week or more after the Post story to create a cone of silence around this story and, to this very day, a protective shield for Biden. As a result, the front-running presidential candidate knows that he does not have to answer even the most basic questions about these documents because most of the national press has already signaled that they will not press him to do so; to the contrary, they will concoct defenses on his behalf to avoid discussing it.
The relevant questions for Biden raised by this new reporting are as glaring as they are important. Yet Biden has had to answer very few of them yet because he has not been asked and, when he has, media outlets have justified his refusal to answer rather than demand that he do so. We submitted nine questions to his campaign about these documents that the public has the absolute right to know, including:
whether he claims any the emails or texts are fabricated (and, if so, which specific ones);
whether he knows if Hunter did indeed drop off laptops at the Delaware repair store;
whether Hunter ever asked him to meet with Burisma executives or whether he in fact did so;
whether Biden ever knew about business proposals in Ukraine or China being pursued by his son and brother in which Biden was a proposed participant and,
how Biden could justify expending so much energy as Vice President demanding that the Ukrainian General Prosecutor be fired, and why the replacement — Yuriy Lutsenko, someone who had no experience in law; was a crony of Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko; and himself had a history of corruption allegations — was acceptable if Biden’s goal really was to fight corruption in Ukraine rather than benefit Burisma or control Ukrainian internal affairs for some other objective.
Though the Biden campaign indicated that they would respond to the Intercept’s questions, they have not done so. A statement they released to other outlets contains no answers to any of these questions except to claim that Biden “has never even considered being involved in business with his family, nor in any business overseas.” To date, even as the Biden campaign echoes the baseless claims of media outlets that anyone discussing this story is “amplifying Russian disinformation,” neither Hunter Biden nor the Biden campaign have even said whether they claim the emails and other documents -- which they and the press continue to label "Russian disinformation" -- are forgeries or whether they are authentic.
The Biden campaign clearly believes it has no need to answer any of these questions by virtue of a panoply of media excuses offered on its behalf that collapse upon the most minimal scrutiny:
First, the claim that the material is of suspect authenticity or cannot be verified -- the excuse used on behalf of Biden by Leslie Stahl and Christiane Amanpour, among others -- is blatantly false for numerous reasons. As someone who has reported similar large archives in partnership with numerous media outlets around the world (including the Snowden archive in 2014 and the Intercept’s Brazil Archive over the last year showing corruption by high-level Bolsonaro officials), and who also covered the reporting of similar archives by other outlets (the Panama Papers, the WikiLeaks war logs of 2010 and DNC/Podesta emails of 2016), it is clear to me that the trove of documents from Hunter Biden’s emails has been verified in ways quite similar to those.
With an archive of this size, one can never independently authenticate every word in every last document unless the subject of the reporting voluntarily confirms it in advance, which they rarely do. What has been done with similar archives is journalists obtain enough verification to create high levels of journalistic confidence in the materials. Some of the materials provided by the source can be independently confirmed, proving genuine access by the source to a hard drive, a telephone, or a database. Other parties in email chains can confirm the authenticity of the email or text conversations in which they participated. One investigates non-public facts contained in the documents to determine that they conform to what the documents reflect. Technology specialists can examine the materials to ensure no signs of forgeries are detected.
This is the process that enabled the largest and most established media outlets around the world to report similar large archives obtained without authorization. In those other cases, no media outlet was able to verify every word of every document prior to publication. There was no way to prove the negative that the source or someone else had not altered or forged some of the material. That level of verification is both unattainable and unnecessary. What is needed is substantial evidence to create high confidence in the authentication process.
The Hunter Biden documents have at least as much verification as those other archives that were widely reported. There are sources in the email chains who have verified that the published emails are accurate. The archive contains private photos and videos of Hunter whose authenticity is not in doubt. A former business partner of Hunter has stated, unequivocally and on the record, that not only are the emails authentic but they describe events accurately, including proposed participation by the former Vice President in at least one deal Hunter and Jim Biden were pursuing in China. And, most importantly of all, neither Hunter Biden nor the Biden campaign has even suggested, let alone claimed, that a single email or text is fake.
Why is the failure of the Bidens to claim that these emails are forged so significant? Because when journalists report on a massive archive, they know that the most important event in the reporting's authentication process comes when the subjects of the reporting have an opportunity to deny that the materials are genuine. Of course that is what someone would do if major media outlets were preparing to publish, or in fact were publishing, fabricated or forged materials in their names; they would say so in order to sow doubt about the materials if not kill the credibility of the reporting.
The silence of the Bidens may not be dispositive on the question of the material’s authenticity, but when added to the mountain of other authentication evidence, it is quite convincing: at least equal to the authentication evidence in other reporting on similarly large archives.
Second, the oft-repeated claim from news outlets and CIA operatives that the published emails and texts were “Russian disinformation” was, from the start, obviously baseless and reckless. No evidence — literally none — has been presented to suggest involvement by any Russians in the dissemination of these materials, let alone that it was part of some official plot by Moscow. As always, anything is possible — when one does not know for certain what the provenance of materials is, nothing can be ruled out — but in journalism, evidence is required before news outlets can validly start blaming some foreign government for the release of information. And none has ever been presented. Yet the claim that this was "Russian disinformation" was published in countless news outlets, television broadcasts, and the social media accounts of journalists, typically by pointing to the evidence-free claims of ex-CIA officials.
Worse is the “disinformation” part of the media’s equation. How can these materials constitute “disinformation” if they are authentic emails and texts actually sent to and from Hunter Biden? The ease with which news outlets that are supposed to be skeptical of evidence-free pronouncements by the intelligence community instead printed their assertions about "Russian disinformation" is alarming in the extreme. But they did it because they instinctively wanted to find a reason to justify ignoring the contents of these emails, so claiming that Russia was behind it, and that the materials were "disinformation," became their placeholder until they could figure out what else they should say to justify ignoring these documents.
Third, the media rush to exonerate Biden on the question of whether he engaged in corruption vis-a-vis Ukraine and Burisma rested on what are, at best, factually dubious defenses of the former Vice President. Much of this controversy centers on Biden's aggressive efforts while Vice President in late 2015 to force the Ukrainian government to fire its Chief Prosecutor, Viktor Shokhin, and replace him with someone acceptable to the U.S., which turned out to be Yuriy Lutsenko. These events are undisputed by virtue of a video of Biden boasting in front of an audience of how he flew to Kiev and forced the Ukrainians to fire Shokhin, upon pain of losing $1 billion in aid.
But two towering questions have long been prompted by these events, and the recently published emails make them more urgent than ever: 1) was the firing of the Ukrainian General Prosecutor such a high priority for Biden as Vice President of the U.S. because of his son's highly lucrative role on the board of Burisma, and 2) if that was not the motive, why was it so important for Biden to dictate who the chief prosecutor of Ukraine was?
The standard answer to the question about Biden's motive -- offered both by Biden and his media defenders -- is that he, along with the IMF and EU, wanted Shokhin fired because the U.S. and its allies were eager to clean up Ukraine, and they viewed Shokhin as insufficiently vigilant in fighting corruption.
“Biden’s brief was to sweet-talk and jawbone Poroshenko into making reforms that Ukraine’s Western benefactors wanted to see as,” wrote the Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler in what the Post calls a “fact-check.” Kessler also endorsed the key defense of Biden: that the firing of Shokhin was bad for Burima, not good for it. “The United States viewed [Shokhin] as ineffective and beholden to Poroshenko and Ukraine’s corrupt oligarchs. In particular, Shokin had failed to pursue an investigation of the founder of Burisma, Mykola Zlochevsky,” Kessler claims.
But that claim does not even pass the laugh test. The U.S. and its European allies are not opposed to corruption by their puppet regimes. They are allies with the most corrupt regimes on the planet, from Riyadh to Cairo, and always have been. Since when does the U.S. devote itself to ensuring good government in the nations it is trying to control? If anything, allowing corruption to flourish has been a key tool in enabling the U.S. to exert power in other countries and to open up their markets to U.S. companies.
Beyond that, if increasing prosecutorial independence and strengthening anti-corruption vigilance were really Biden's goal in working to demand the firing of the Ukrainian chief prosecutor, why would the successor to Shokhin, Yuriy Lutsenko, possibly be acceptable? Lutsenko, after all, had "no legal background as general prosecutor," was principally known only as a lackey of Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, was forced in 2009 to "resign as interior minister after being detained by police at Frankfurt airport for being drunk and disorderly," and "was subsequently jailed for embezzlement and abuse of office, though his defenders said the sentence was politically motivated."
Is it remotely convincing to you that Biden would have accepted someone like Lutsenko if his motive really were to fortify anti-corruption prosecutions in Ukraine? Yet that's exactly what Biden did: he personally told Poroshenko that Lutsenko was an acceptable alternative and promptly released the $1 billion after his appointment was announced. Whatever Biden's motive was in using his power as U.S. Vice President to change the prosecutor in Ukraine, his acceptance of someone like Lutsenko strongly suggests that combatting Ukrainian corruption was not it.
As for the other claim on which Biden and his media allies have heavily relied — that firing Shokhin was not a favor for Burisma because Shokhin was not pursuing any investigations against Burisma — the evidence does not justify that assertion.
It is true that no evidence, including these new emails, constitute proof that Biden's motive in demanding Shokhin's termination was to benefit Burisma. But nothing demonstrates that Shokhin was impeding investigations into Burisma. Indeed, the New York Times in 2019 published one of the most comprehensive investigations to date of the claims made in defense of Biden when it comes to Ukraine and the firing of this prosecutor, and, while noting that "no evidence has surfaced that the former vice president intentionally tried to help his son by pressing for the prosecutor general’s dismissal," this is what its reporters concluded about Shokhin and Burisma:
[Biden's] pressure campaign eventually worked. The prosecutor general, long a target of criticism from other Western nations and international lenders, was voted out months later by the Ukrainian Parliament.
Among those who had a stake in the outcome was Hunter Biden, Mr. Biden’s younger son, who at the time was on the board of an energy company owned by a Ukrainian oligarch who had been in the sights of the fired prosecutor general.
The Times added: "Mr. Shokhin’s office had oversight of investigations into [Burisma's billionaire founder] Zlochevsky and his businesses, including Burisma." By contrast, they said, Lutsenko, the replacement approved by Vice President Biden, "initially continued investigating Mr. Zlochevsky and Burisma, but cleared him of all charges within 10 months of taking office."
So whether or not it was Biden's intention to confer benefits on Burisma by demanding Shokhin's firing, it ended up quite favorable for Burisma given that the utterly inexperienced Lutesenko "cleared [Burisma's founder] of all charges within 10 months of taking office."
The new comprehensive report from journalist Taibbi on Sunday also strongly supports the view that there were clear antagonisms between Shokhin and Burisma, such that firing the Ukrainian prosecutor would have been beneficial for Burisma. Taibbi, who reported for many years while based in Russia and remains very well-sourced in the region, detailed:
For all the negative press about Shokhin, there’s no doubt that there were multiple active cases involving Zlochevsky/Burisma during his short tenure. This was even once admitted by American reporters, before it became taboo to describe such cases untethered to words like “dormant.” Here’s how Ken Vogel at the New York Times put it in May of 2019:
"When Mr. Shokhin became prosecutor general in February 2015, he inherited several investigations into the company and Mr. Zlochevsky, including for suspicion of tax evasion and money laundering. Mr. Shokin also opened an investigation into the granting of lucrative gas licenses to companies owned by Mr. Zlochevsky when he was the head of the Ukrainian Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources."
Ukrainian officials I reached this week confirmed that multiple cases were active during that time.
“There were different numbers, but from 7 to 14,” says Serhii Horbatiuk, former head of the special investigations department for the Prosecutor General’s Office, when asked how many Burisma cases there were.
“There may have been two to three episodes combined, and some have already been closed, so I don't know the exact amount." But, Horbatiuk insists, there were many cases, most of them technically started under Yarema, but at least active under Shokin.
The numbers quoted by Horbatiuk gibe with those offered by more recent General Prosecutor Rulsan Ryaboshapka, who last year said there were at one time or another “13 or 14” cases in existence involving Burisma or Zlochevsky.
Taibbi reviews real-time reporting in both Ukraine and the U.S. to document several other pending investigations against Burisma and Zlochevsky that was overseen by the prosecutor whose firing Biden demanded. He notes that Shokhin himself has repeatedly said he was pursuing several investigations against Zlochevsky at the time Biden demanded his firing. In sum, Taibbi concludes, "one can’t say there’s no evidence of active Burisma cases even during the last days of Shokin, who says that it was the February, 2016 seizure order [against Zlochevsky's assets] that got him fired."
And, Taibbi notes, "the story looks even odder when one wonders why the United States would exercise so much foreign policy muscle to get Shokin fired, only to allow in a replacement — Yuri Lutsenko — who by all accounts was a spectacularly bigger failure in the battle against corruption in general, and Zlochevsky in particular." In sum: "it’s unquestionable that the cases against Burisma were all closed by Shokin’s successor, chosen in consultation with Joe Biden, whose son remained on the board of said company for three more years, earning upwards of $50,000 per month."
The publicly known facts, augmented by the recent emails, texts and on-the-record accounts, suggest serious sleaze by Joe Biden’s son Hunter in trying to peddle his influence with the Vice President for profit. But they also raise real questions about whether Joe Biden knew about and even himself engaged in a form of legalized corruption. Specifically, these newly revealed information suggest Biden was using his power to benefit his son’s business Ukrainian associates, and allowing his name to be traded on while Vice President for his son and brother to pursue business opportunities in China. These are questions which a minimally healthy press would want answered, not buried — regardless of how many similar or worse scandals the Trump family has.
But the real scandal that has been proven is not the former Vice President’s misconduct but that of his supporters and allies in the U.S. media. As Taibbi’s headline put it: “With the Hunter Biden Exposé, Suppression is a Bigger Scandal Than the Actual Story.”
The reality is the U.S. press has been planning for this moment for four years — cooking up justifications for refusing to report on newsworthy material that might help Donald Trump get re-elected. One major factor is the undeniable truth that journalists with national outlets based in New York, Washington and West Coast cities overwhelmingly not just favor Joe Biden but are desperate to see Donald Trump defeated.
It takes an enormous amount of gullibility to believe that any humans are capable of separating such an intense partisan preference from their journalistic judgment. Many barely even bother to pretend: critiques of Joe Biden are often attacked first not by Biden campaign operatives but by political reporters at national news outlets who make little secret of their eagerness to help Biden win.
But much of this has to do with the fallout from the 2016 election. During that campaign, news outlets, including The Intercept, did their jobs as journalists by reporting on the contents of newsworthy, authentic documents: namely, the emails published by WikiLeaks from the John Podesta and DNC inboxes which, among other things, revealed corruption so severe that it forced the resignation of the top five officials of the DNC. That the materials were hacked, and that intelligence agencies were suggesting Russia was responsible, not negate the newsworthiness of the documents, which is why media outlets across the country repeatedly reported on their contents.
Nonetheless, journalists have spent four years being attacked as Trump enablers in their overwhelmingly Democratic and liberal cultural circles: the cities in which they live are overwhelmingly Democratic, and their demographic — large-city, college-educated professionals — has vanishingly little Trump support. A New York Times survey of campaign data from Monday tells just a part of this story of cultural insularity and homogeniety:
Joe Biden has outraised President Trump on the strength of some of the wealthiest and most educated ZIP codes in the United States, running up the fund-raising score in cities and suburbs so resoundingly that he collected more money than Mr. Trump on all but two days in the last two months....It is not just that much of Mr. Biden’s strongest support comes overwhelmingly from the two coasts, which it does.... [U]nder Mr. Trump, Republicans have hemorrhaged support from white voters with college degrees. In ZIP codes with a median household income of at least $100,000, Mr. Biden smashed Mr. Trump in fund-raising, $486 million to only $167 million — accounting for almost his entire financial edge....One Upper West Side ZIP code — 10024 — accounted for more than $8 million for Mr. Biden, and New York City in total delivered $85.6 million for him — more than he raised in every state other than California....
The median household in the United States was $68,703 in 2019. In ZIP codes above that level, Mr. Biden outraised Mr. Trump by $389.1 million. Below that level, Mr. Trump was actually ahead by $53.4 million.
Wanting to avoid a repeat of feeling scorn and shunning in their own extremely pro-Democratic, anti-Trump circles, national media outlets have spent four years inventing standards for election-year reporting on hacked materials that never previously existed and that are utterly anathema to the core journalistic function. The Washington Post's Executive Editor Marty Baron, for instance, issued a memo full of cautions about how Post reporters should, or should not, discuss hacked materials even if their authenticity is not in doubt.
That a media outlet should even consider refraining from reporting on materials they know to be authentic and in the public interest because of questions about their provenance is the opposite of how journalism has been practiced. In the days before the 2016 election, for instance, the New York Times received by mail one year of Donald Trump's tax returns and -- despite having no idea who sent it to them or how that person obtained it: was is stolen or hacked by a foreign power? -- the Times reported on its contents.
When asked by NPR why they would report on documents when they do not know the source let alone the source's motives in providing them, two-time Pulitzer Prize winner David Barstow compellingly explained what had always been the core principle of journalism: namely, a journalist only cares about two questions -- (1) are documents authentic and (2) are they in the public interest? -- but does not care about what motives a source has in providing the documents or how they were obtained when deciding whether to reporting them:
Why NYT's David Barstow does not care who leaked us Trump's tax return, or what the motivation was. Listen: https://t.co/Bm5nGQ1oQM— Michael Barbaro (@mikiebarb) October 4, 2016
The U.S. media often laments that people have lost faith in its pronouncements, that they are increasingly viewed as untrustworthy and that many people view Fake News sites are more reliable than established news outlets. They are good at complaining about this, but very bad at asking whether any of their own conduct is responsible for it.
A media outlet that renounces its core function -- pursuing answers to relevant questions about powerful people -- is one that deserves to lose the public's faith and confidence. And that is exactly what the U.S. media, with some exceptions, attempted to do with this story: they took the lead not in investigating these documents but in concocting excuses for why they should be ignored.
As my colleague Lee Fang put it on Sunday: "The partisan double standards in the media are mind boggling this year, and much of the supposedly left independent media is just as cowardly and conformist as the mainstream corporate media. Everyone is reading the room and acting out of fear." Discussing his story from Sunday, Taibbi summed up the most important point this way: "The whole point is that the press loses its way when it cares more about who benefits from information than whether it's true."