Thursday, January 17, 2019

Anastasia Vashukevich

 | ThursdayJan. 17, 2019, 4:45 p.m.
MOSCOW — A model from Belarus who claimed to have recordings shedding light on the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia was detained Thursday at a Moscow airport on prostitution allegations, the police said.
The model, Anastasia Vashukevich, had been deported from Thailand earlier in the day after spending nine months in prison on charges of conspiracy and soliciting prostitution.
She was booked to fly to Minsk, Belarus, but was detained along with three others traveling with her as she changed planes at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo International Airport, according to her husband and another person traveling with her.
No evidence has emerged of the tape that Vashukevich claimed showed contacts between Trump campaign officials and Russians. Her arrest in Moscow was unexpected and blocked her from possibly talking to dozens of journalists waiting for her in the airport’s arrivals zone.
Gregory Kogan, a close friend of Vashukevich, asserted that Russian and Belarusan diplomats in Thailand had pledged the group would be safe if they left for Russia or flew via Moscow.
The four now face charges of inducement into prostitution, said a police statement quoted by the Interfax news agency. They face a maximum of six years in prison.
Vashukevich, a model and self-described “sex expert” also known as Nastya Rybka, became an unlikely figure in the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election.
Alexei Navalny, a Russian anti-corruption activist, last year highlighted Instagram videos from 2016 apparently showing her on a yacht with Russian metals magnate Oleg Deripaska and a Russian deputy prime minister.
Soon after her apparent connection to Deripaska came to light, Vashukevich and several Russians were arrested while conducting what she described as a sex training seminar for Russian tourists in the Thai resort town of Pattaya. In jail, she pleaded for U.S. help, saying she had recordings revealing ties between Russia and Donald Trump.
Deripaska used to work with Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort. Deripaska has denied wrongdoing.
On Tuesday, she and her seven co-defendants pleaded guilty in Thai court, clearing the way for them to be deported.
“They’re dumb allegations, with no grounds and no explanation,” her husband, Nikolay Vashukevich, who wasn’t one of the four detained, said in a text message as he waited in the airport’s transit area to learn his wife’s fate.

Trump blocks Pelosi trip as tensions mount over U.S. government shutdown

Trump blocks Pelosi trip as tensions mount over U.S. government shutdown
Reuters News
Steve Holland, James Oliphant

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump’s conflict with Democrats over a partial U.S. government shutdown escalated on Thursday with Trump denying House Speaker Nancy Pelosi use of military aircraft for an overseas trip in apparent retaliation for her suggestion that he delay the annual State of the Union address.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) arrives for a press briefing on the 27th day of a partial government shutdown on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., January 17, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
The rising tension suggested that the shutdown, now in its 27th day, remains far from being resolved.

In the meantime, the Trump administration continued to try to mitigate the shutdown’s impact. The State Department said it would call its furloughed employees back to work next week for national security reasons.

Pelosi had been scheduled to travel on a military aircraft as part of a congressional delegation to Belgium, where NATO is based, and Afghanistan to visit American troops stationed there.

Mike Pence's 'Bush League' Move On ISIS | Morning Joe | MSNBC

APACHE JUNCTION AZ (IFS) -- VP Mike Pence, is the most un-informed man alive, or just really ignorant of the facts and left in the basement without any communications.  Making a statement about the defeat of ISIS as four (4) US Military personnel were killed just hours before this TV appearance, show that the incompetence of this person and administration is just on the verge of a fatal crash and burn.  Getting facts first before you speak is essential to any situation. 

Pence declares 'ISIS has been defeated' on the same day as deadly ...

1 day ago - On the same day that an ISIS-claimed attack killed US service members in Syria, Vice President Mike Pence declared that "the caliphate has ...

Mitt Romney Caves In on Russian Vote

APACHE JUNCTION AZ (IFS) -- It was no surprise here, as we predicted about the junior senator from Utah would be a traitor and vote with the old men on the DJT Ship "Trumptanic" as his tough talk was just that "all talk".  Romney did not waste any time in casting his very first votes to strip the Russian Bankers of sanctions and giving President Trump his way.

When in the future, that the US Senate is looking for a real "grown-up" in the room, Romney is not it.  Just a "Milk-toast" wimp that needs to go back to Utah, as he proves he is "worthless" and not a leader at all.

1 day ago - Senate Democrats fail to stop Trump administration from lifting sanctions on firms linked to Putin friend. ... Sen. Mitt Romney, who had warned as a 2012 presidential candidate that Russia is the U.S.' top geopolitical foe, votes against Minority Leader Chuck Schumer's resolution.

 · Published: 4 hours ago

When Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, opened 2019 with a scathing commentary lamenting President Donald Trump’s lack of moral leadership, it seemed he was claiming the mantle of the late Sen. John McCain.
Like McCain, Romney — for the most part — did not partake in the ritual fealty that so many of Trump’s vanquished foes demonstrated. Sure, he met with Trump in November 2016 to audition for secretary of state. But Romney never fully bent the knee.
So one might think Romney would have joined the 11 other Republican senators who voted this week to stop the Trump administration from lifting sanctions meant to squeeze Russian President Vladimir Putin’s allies. Senate aides told me Majority Leader Mitch McConnell did not try too hard to whip the vote, and neither did the White House.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Daily Kos Recommended

Daily Kos Recommended

Some of the most read and shared stories of the week from Daily Kos, the largest online gathering space for progressives.

Vinyl and Cassette Sales Continued to Grow Last Year

3:56 PM EST
Albums sold on vinyl and cassette both saw a growth in sales according to BuzzAngle Music’s End-Year Report profiling U.S. music industry consumption for 2018.
Vinyl sales grew by just shy of 12% from 8.6 to 9.7 million sales, while cassette sales grew by almost 19% from 99,400 to 118,200 copies sold in the US, The Verge reported.
Sixty-six percent of those vinyl sales were of albums that are more than three years old and feature classic bands like The Beatles, Fleetwood Mac, and Pink Floyd, reported BuzzAngle. Cassettes saw popularity in newer releases.
CDs on the other hand have declined by 18.5% in popularity leading to a total decline in physical album sales of over 15%, reported The Verge. Meanwhile, audio streaming saw an increase of 41.8%, the largest of all music consumption.

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