Appoint special prosecutor to investigate FBI, Justice Department

first_imgCategories: Editorial, OpinionThe Washington Post reported that a former top FBI official, Peter Strzok, who had been assigned to and then removed from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, had “exchanged politically charged texts disparaging [President Donald Trump and supporting Democrat Hillary Clinton” and that Strzok was “also a key player in the investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server.” The new special counsel could also review Strzok’s texts and, more crucially, his conduct throughout 2015 and 2016.Strzok may be completely innocent of anything except an off-handed joke that the straight-laced Mueller deemed necessary to punish in a display of a “Caesar’s wife” sort of purity of purpose.But if his texts to FBI lawyer Lisa Page reveal a partisan animus towards Trump or admiration for Clinton, then the bureau and the department have a huge problem on their hands and not just with Strzok and Page.When FBI Special Agent Robert Hanssen was revealed to have committed espionage against the United States, it didn’t mean that even one other member of the bureau was guilty of Hanssen’s sins, but it did require a painstaking review of all of Hanssen’s activities and inputs, as all of them had to be reconsidered in light of his treasonous behavior.If Strzok’s texts reveal deep animus towards Trump or an operational effort to tilt one or more investigations, then all of his actions have to be reviewed to assure the public’s confidence in the bureau.That one or two agents or officials of the bureau are discovered to have been acting from improper motives would be bad enough. To try and sweep those activities under the rug would be worse. Against the backdrop of other recent controversies, it would be disastrous.Step one is a quick publication of the questionable texts. All of them. The public has a right to know what the predicate for Mueller’s extraordinary action was. The public also deserves a detailed account of Strzok’s (and Page’s) duties and authorities during the years in question.If an NBA official was discovered to have purposefully thrown even one game, every game in which he had carried a whistle would be under the microscope. That’s how it works. Unless there’s a cover-up.Nevertheless, just as Hanssen was “one bad apple” who didn’t spoil the bunch, so even an out-of-bounds Strzok doesn’t necessarily mean anything about the FBI beyond him.To get to the truth, and restore confidence in federal law enforcement, better a special counsel to conduct the inquiry, bring any necessary charges and make a report – someone without ties to the president or his opponents. They do exist, such men and women. Former federal judges make excellent candidates. But we need one appointed right now.Hugh Hewitt is a Washington Post contributing columnist.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristscenter_img This is a blockbuster revelation, carrying the possibility of shattering public confidence in a number of long-held assumptions about the criminal-justice system generally and the FBI and the Justice Department specifically.The Justice Department should appoint a special counsel to investigate Strzok’s actions as soon as possible.The Strzok report comes on heels of the widely derided Justice Department investigation into IRS discrimination against conservative groups, including the disposition of allegations against IRS senior official Lois Lerner, and after the wildly erratic behavior of then-FBI Director James Comey during 2016.Mix into this battering of the Justice Department’s and FBI’s reputations the still-murky charges and counter-charges of abuse of “unmasking” powers during the waning days of the Obama era. As a result, a large swath of responsible center-right observers are now demanding a full review of the investigation and prosecution powers wielded by the Obama-era Justice Department and FBI.Former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy wrote in the National Review on Saturday that President Trump should call for a second independent counsel to investigate abuse of the counterintelligence authorities under President Barack Obama, abuses he suggests were undertaken to protect the controversial Iran deal on nuclear weapons.This is an excellent idea.last_img read more

China’s young jobseekers struggle despite economic recovery

first_img“I’ve studied for so many years and don’t want my family to pay for further training,” she said.”I’m especially worried about my finances.”Aware of the risk that mass unemployment can spark political unrest – jeopardizing the party’s pledge of prosperity in return for unquestioned political power – the government has been making efforts to boost graduate employment via state-owned enterprises (SOEs).But poorer opportunities this year are pushing some into further studies, less ideal jobs or other options.‘Extremely anxious’Although China’s economy appeared to make a strong comeback in the second quarter – growing 3.2 percent on-year – analysts caution the rebound may be overestimated, with a gap re-emerging between national figures and higher-frequency data.Read also: How the COVID-19 pandemic will leave more young people unemployed in IndonesiaLouis Kuijs of Oxford Economics told AFP there is no doubt China is recovering, but the magnitude would determine if growth is “strong enough to re-absorb some of the labor market problems” that emerged earlier this year, such as layoffs.A gap in growth of a few percentage points could lead to a difference of millions of jobs created, he added.Although China’s urban unemployment rate slipped to 5.7 percent in June, 19.3 percent of new graduates remained jobless, UOB economists said in a report, adding the labor market “continued to face challenges”.Top-level economic data has not necessarily meant better hiring on the ground.A 27-year-old surnamed Kang, who graduated in 2017, is back in the market after his contract in the communications industry in Beijing ended.He decided to return to Zhengzhou, but has only received around five callbacks after sending more than 30 resumes to firms – and is still looking for a job.”The virus outbreak has limited travel and a lot of job fairs have been postponed or cancelled,” he said. “I’m extremely anxious.”Lu Yifan, 25, said the pandemic had caused many overseas Chinese students like him to return home sooner than planned – adding to the flood of jobseekers.And Guangdong graduate Zhao Jingying, 22, told AFP: “For us (this year), getting a single job offer is a feat.”Read also: Govt expects unemployment to worsen, continue into next yearAnother, Beijing-based Huo Ruixi, 23, left university in July but is planning a second round of further education after an unsuccessful five-month job search.‘Pressures are larger’The crisis is also causing problems for employers.Yang Changwei, manager at Deyou Real Estate, told AFP at the Zhengzhou fair it was getting harder to hire sales staff based on commission.”It feels like jobseekers’ mindsets have shifted,” he said.”In sales, you may or may not make deals but with other jobs there can be more stability in income. Because of the epidemic, financial pressures are larger as well.”Officials are ramping up efforts to boost graduate employment, and Premier Li Keqiang announced over nine million new roles will be created this year.A State Council guideline in March said smaller firms that recruit graduates with contracts longer than a year will be given a subsidy, while SOEs will “continuously expand” the scale of graduate-hiring this year and next.Henan authorities, for one, said at least half the recruitment positions at SOEs within the province should be reserved for this year’s graduates, while Nanjing city in Jiangsu province set aside one billion yuan (US$143 million) to provide 100,000 internships for struggling graduates, Xinhua news agency reported.Topics : Biology student Ma Jingjing wandered the hall of a job fair in central China among other young Chinese hoping to find work in an economy crushed by the coronavirus pandemic.Ma, 26, is one of almost nine million people graduating and entering the job market this year at a time of great uncertainty, an issue that has the ruling Communist Party worried to the point that President Xi Jinping has made it a priority.The world’s second-largest economy may have rebounded sharply from a historic virus-induced contraction, but its young graduate jobless rate in June was more than three times that for urban unemployment. Ma was among hundreds of young faces streaming in and out of the job fair on a recent weekend in Zhengzhou, where employers in industries ranging from real estate to manufacturing were recruiting.Read also: Pandemic leaves first-time jobseekers in limboLike many others, the aspiring teacher is “at a loss” and wondering if she should settle for any job or hold off work for further education.”I have applied to seven or eight private schools, but only one has called me back for an interview,” she told AFP at the fair.last_img read more

‘Real Madrid waited too long to sign Hazard’

first_imgEden Hazard had an injury hit season for Real Madrid and is 29, leading some to conclude his €100m signing can already be called a mistake, with Los Blancos waiting too long to bring him to the Spanish capital.Advertisement Loading… Promoted ContentA Soviet Shot Put Thrower’s Record Hasn’t Been Beaten To This Day2020 Tattoo Trends: Here’s What You’ll See This Year7 Reasons It’s Better To Be A Vegan9 Facts You Should Know Before Getting A TattooYou’ve Only Seen Such Colorful Hairdos In A Handful Of AnimeLook At Something Beautiful That Wasn’t Made By A Human BeingTop 10 Most Romantic Nations In The WorldIncredible Discoveries That Puzzled The Whole World7 Ways To Understand Your Girlfriend BetterThis Is Hachi, And He’s The Happiest Dog On InstagramWho Is The Most Powerful Woman On Earth?The Best Cars Of All Time They debated that exact point on ESPN, and Don Hutchinson said he thought that given the price tag, they probably should have moved a season or two earlier.Of course, Hutchinson concedes that this he can only say this with hindsight, and all the talking heads present agree that signing him was a no-brainer at the time.center_img There’s also just the plain fact that Chelsea weren’t willing to sell, until the Belgian was into the last 12 months of his contract, regardless of the player’s fluctuating desire to stay or go.He still has years left to show that he can make that fee worthwhile, but he will be as frustrated as anyone that he hasn’t been able to hit the ground running.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 Read Also: Ronaldo’s girlfriend Georgina posts confusing baby messagelast_img read more

South Africa condemns Syria killings

first_img1 June 2012 South Africa has reiterated its condemnation of the killing of Syrian people, once again calling for an immediate cessation of hostilities in the country. Speaking in Geneva on Friday at the 19th Special Session of the UN Human Rights Council on the deteriorating human rights situation in Syria, Deputy Justice Minister Andries Nel said South Africa condemned the killings of men, women and children in the Syrian village of El-Houleh. “We wish to extend our sincere and heartfelt condolences to all the families of the victims of the horrific tragedy and we extend our solidarity to all the people of Syria in these difficult times,” Nel, adding that those responsible for the killings should be brought to book. “We support a thorough and immediate investigation into these killings with the full involvement of the United Nations Supervision Mission in Syria and the commission of inquiry established by the UN Human Rights Council. “It remains imperative that the use of violence by all parties in Syria immediately cease and that stability returns to the country,” Nel said. “South Africa believes that the 6-Point Peace Plan for Syria, as presented by Joint Special Envoy Kofi Annan, [is] an opportunity to resolve this conflict in an inclusive and legitimate manner. Every effort possible should be made to support and ensure the implementation of this plan.” Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

Mahishasura as Ram Rahim irks Santhals

first_imgSatya Paul, a potter-artisan in his mid-50s, is a worried man. He has been commissioned to depict Gurmeet Ram Rahim, the godman convicted of rape, as an asur (demon) for Durga Puja. The goddess Durga kills the asur, usually described as a man with evil qualities in Bengali narratives, and Durga Puja is about the fight between the good and the evil.“I’m in a terrible situation as the [puja] organisers want the asur to look like Ram Rahim and I cannot imagine an archetype as I have never made one before,” said Mr. Paul, who has been modelling clay for four decades. Internet to the rescueThe committee members organising this puja — the Dinhata Exchange-Morh Durga Puja Committee in Cooch Behar district of north Bengal — addressed the problem by “extracting a smiling Ram Rahim” from the Internet, said committee’s joint secretary, Bina Majumdar.“The idea came to the organisers too late, when the skull and even the face of Mahishasur had not only been completed but had dried,” said Mr. Paul. “Now, I am closely observing Ram Rahim’s eyes and beard and trying my best to replicate some features from the image given to me,” he added.The idea of having Ram Rahim as asur, however, has annoyed a section of locals, especially Santhals, who worship the asur. “The upper-caste, Brahminical Hindu Bengali society does not care for the sentiments of other communities,” said Nityananda Hembram, head of the leading Santhal Samaj. “Adivasis have their counter-narratives on the slaughter of Mahishasur. Challenging the Brahminical interpretation of history, they claim that Mahisasur was their powerful and valiant ancestor, and an unfortunate tragic hero in real life,” said Maroona Murmu, Assistant Professor of History at Jadavpur University.The argument that Mahishasur is “an egalitarian king” has now confused the puja committee. Ms. Majumdar admitted they had not explored this angle while planning their asur. For Mr. Paul, though, the challenge is different. “I’m giving Ram Rahim a garish golden and white vest but what do you think would be the ideal wear below the waist — a blue dhoti with a gold border or a white border,” he asked. He will hand over the Ram Rahim asur and the goddess to the committee on Monday night.last_img read more

10 months agoLaLiga president Tebas: Barcelona ace Messi proving superior to Ronaldo

first_imgLaLiga president Tebas: Barcelona ace Messi proving superior to Ronaldoby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveLaLiga president Javier Tebas hailed the hat-trick performance of Leo Messi for Barcelona’s 5-0 win at Levante on Sunday.Tebas placed the Barcelona star at the very top of football, ahead of Juventus’ Cristiano Ronaldo. “Anyone who saw the game against Levante, is a football fan and takes off their club colours, we have to open our eyes and say that Messi’s the best player in the world by a difference,” he said. The president added that “it doesn’t matter what team you support, if you criticise Messi and say he’s not the best in the world currently, you don’t understand football.” Asked about the comparison with Cristiano Ronaldo, Tebas, a Madrid fan, was clear: “In this era now he’s way ahead of Ronaldo. That’s now always been the case in other seasons. But he’s leading Barcelona. He keeps taking on responsibility, seemingly with a new-found youth. He’s at an incredible level.” About the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

9 months agoFulham boss Ranieri: Burnley had three chances and scored two own goals

first_imgFulham boss Ranieri: Burnley had three chances and scored two own goalsby Paul Vegas9 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveFulham boss Claudio Ranieri insists they deserved something from their 2-1 defeat at Burnley.Jeff Hendrick, playing in an unfamiliar right midfield role, had two first half efforts deflected in off Joe Bryan and Denis Odoi to cancel out Andre Schurrle’s stunning second minute goal.Ranier said, “Football is fantastic. We deserved more but that’s football.”They had three chances and scored two own goals. We are alive, we never give up and we continue to fight.”I am satisfied with our performance. We knew it would be a battle, they won so they are right and we are wrong.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Harper signs agreement with Yukon territorial government

first_imgAPTN National NewsPrime Minister Stephen Harper continues his annual tour of the North.In the Yukon, he’s signed a new resource development sharing deal with the territorial government.The deal was signed at the Minto copper and gold mine.That’s where the Selkirk First Nation holds sub-surface resource rights and the band receives royalties from the mine.The resource sharing agreement will increase mineral revenues for both the Yukon and First Nation governments.But at the Minto mine site, the Selkirk chief said environmental concerns will still be a major priority.last_img read more

Minister Anything could happen if Brexit deal rejected

first_imgLONDON — A senior British Cabinet minister has said that a second referendum or a so-called “Norway-plus” deal could be in the cards if Prime Minister Theresa May fails to win lawmakers’ approval for her Brexit deal.Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd is the first minister to discuss a “Plan B” should May be defeated in a key parliamentary vote scheduled for Tuesday.Rudd, who backs May’s Brexit deal, said “anything could happen” if the government is defeated in Parliament, and predicted a chaotic period.She told the Times on Saturday that while none of the possible alternatives is better than the current Brexit deal, she would prefer a model similar to Norway, which is not an EU member but is part of the European Economic Area.The Associated Presslast_img read more

Charlie Lake Fire Department investigating early morning fire

first_img Firefighters battling a blaze at a shop in the 10200 block of the 269 Road in Grand Haven on Tuesday morning. Photo by Chris Newton 1 of 10 Smoke from a massive fire seen over Fort St. John this morning. Photo by Chris Newton Photo by Chris Newton Photo by Chris Newton Photo by Chris Newton FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Charlie Lake Fire Department was called out to the scene of a fire just before 5 a.m. Tuesday.The fire erupted at a three-bay shop in the 10200 block of the 269 Road just west of Fort St. John. The Charlie Lake Fire Department requested help from the Fort St. John and Taylor fire departments for both manpower and water.A total of seven apparatus and 13 firefighters from Charlie Lake responded with one apparatus and four firefighters each from Fort St. John and Taylor. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but crews battled the blaze for several hours before extinguishing the fire and all of the hot spots. There were no injuries.The CLFD would like to thank the Fort St John Fire Department and the Taylor Fire Department for assisting with the incident. Photo by Chris Newton last_img read more