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jberryhill

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Delaware
Member since: Fri Jan 20, 2006, 08:14 PM
Number of posts: 62,444

Journal Archives

Bill Cosby, "Political Prisoner"

Well-known civil rights political activist Bill Cosby had this to say...

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/bill-cosby-not-remorseful-because-he-did-nothing-wrong-attorney-n970821

"My political beliefs, my actions of trying to humanize all races, genders and religions landed me in this place surrounded by barb wire fencing, a room made of steel and iron," Cosby said Wednesday in his first statement since his imprisonment four months ago. "So, I now have a temporary residence that resembles the quarters of some of the greatest political prisoners — Martin Luther King, Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Randal Robinson and Dr. Benjamin Chavis."

Oh, Bill, you seem to have forgotten those political beliefs.

2004:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pound_Cake_speech

But these people, the ones up here in the balcony fought so hard. Looking at the incarcerated, these are not political criminals. These are people going around stealing Coca-Cola. People getting shot in the back of the head over a piece of pound cake! And then we all run out and are outraged, 'The cops shouldn't have shot him.' What the hell was he doing with the pound cake in his hand? I wanted a piece of pound cake just as bad as anybody else, and I looked at it and I had no money. And something called parenting said, 'If you get caught with it you're going to embarrass your mother.' Not 'You're going to get your butt kicked.' No. 'You're going to embarrass your family.'

Avenatti Pocketed Over $30k From His PAC Which Spent $0 On Behalf Of Any Candidate In 2018

Some time ago on DU, after a number of DUers had indicated they were donating, the question arose as to whether Avenatti could pay himself out of the funds for "The Fight" PAC which he had started last year.

I took a look at the overall financials filed with the FEC for the 2018 year-end, and noted that his PAC managed to rack up a variety of travel and dining expenses while contributing absolutely nothing either directly or as independent expenditures on behalf of any candidate for office whatsoever. My post on that is here:

https://www.democraticunderground.com/100211784562

A good chunk of the expenses were for (a) advertising the PAC itself and (b) travel and dining.

He took in and spent over $100k and is down to a little over $10k, so those of you who donated before might want to pull out your wallets and shovel some more cash in, because baby needs new shoes.

You can continue to donate to Avenatti's PAC, which benefits no candidate in any election at all, here: www.thefightpac.org

Give generously, tightwads.

What I failed to notice, since I didn't look at all the detailed expenses was that despite failing to provide material support to a single candidate in any race anywhere in an election here, more than $30,000 - roughly a third of what the PAC spent - did go to a particular individual:



There is no explanation in the FEC filings as to what, precisely, these payments to himself were for.

The FEC is sort of wondering the same thing:



There Is Still Time To Charge Lt. Gov. Fairfax For Rape In Massachusetts

If anyone was curious, the events alleged to have taken place in July 2004 are still subject to criminal prosecution:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2004_Democratic_National_Convention

The 2004 Democratic National Convention convened from July 26 to 29, 2004 at the FleetCenter (now the TD Garden) in Boston, Massachusetts

The Statute of Limitations in MA is:

https://malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/PartIV/TitleII/Chapter277/Section63

An indictment for an offense set forth in sections 22, 24 or subsection (a) of section 50 of chapter 265, or for conspiracy to commit either of these offenses or as an accessory thereto or any 1 or more of them may be found and filed within 15 years of the date of commission of such offense.

And that refers to this section, under which a life sentence is available:

https://malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/PartIV/TitleI/Chapter265/Section22


Section 22: Rape, generally; weapons; punishment; eligibility for furlough, education, training or employment programs

....
(b) Whoever has sexual intercourse or unnatural sexual intercourse with a person and compels such person to submit by force and against his will, or compels such person to submit by threat of bodily injury, shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for not more than twenty years; and whoever commits a second or subsequent such offense shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for life or for any term or years.


So, the better part of six months is still available for a rape in 2004 to be reported, investigated, and charged in Massachusetts.

Avenatti's "The Fight" PAC Files 2018 Year-End Financials, Let's Have a Look-See

With great fanfare some months ago, Michael Avenatti launched a Political Action Committee named "The Fight" in keeping with his theme that the next Democratic presidential candidate should be a "fighter" (and he doesn't seem to know any existing D politicians who qualify, apparently).

I had posted some notes on his first quarterly filings a while back, and the year-end report is now in.

Let's have a look under the hood of what it takes to be a "fighter":

http://docquery.fec.gov/cgi-bin/forms/C00685966/1312975/#DETAILED

For the year, Avenatti took in $115,072.39 in donations, largely through ActBlue.

The PAC spent $104,944.70 and has $10,127.69 left over.

So, what does $100k of "fighting" look like? Well, it involves a lot of airfare, nice hotels, and some very nice restaurants, but there is one thing - during a mid-term election year - that "fighting" does not involve:

Donations or expenditures on behalf of any candidate whatsoever.

ALL of the disbursements - every single penny of what he got from donors - was for operating expenses. There were no direct contributions to candidates, and no independent expenditures on behalf of candidates, as shown in this part:

22. Transfers to Affiliated/Other Party Committees 0.00 0.00
23. Contributions to Fed. Candidates/Committees and Other Political Committees 0.00 0.00
24. Independent Expenditures (SCHEDULE E) 0.00 0.00
25. Coordinated Expenditures Made by Party Committees (SCHEDULE F) 0.00 0.00

30. Federal Election Activity
(a) (i) Allocated Federal Election Activity - Federal Share (SCHEDULE H6) 0.00 0.00
(a) (ii) Allocated Federal Election Activity - Levin Share (SCHEDULE H6) 0.00 0.00
(b) Federal Election Activity Paid Entirely with Federal Funds 0.00 0.00
(c) Total Federal Election Activity ( 30(a)(i)+30(a)(ii)+30(b) ) 0.00 0.00

So, "fighting" does not involve spending money to actually get anyone elected to any office anywhere.

But, you can't fight if you aren't well rested and well fed.

And to be well rested and well fed for fighting, you could do worse than to stay at any of these fine hotels:

Grand Hyatt San Francisco
Hyatt House Fort Lauderdale
SLS LUX Brickell (Miami)
The Condado Plaza Hilton (San Juan)

The SLS Lux Brickell is particularly nice, as it is a condominium hotel, with one-night "studio" units available starting at $619 per night.

or to eat at any of these places:

KOMODO 801 Brickell Ave, Miami
Cecconi's 8764 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood
Craig's 8826 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood

KOMODO is conveniently located near the SLS Lux Brickell (www.komodomiami.com) and features some great night life:



David Grutman, the powerhouse behind Miami Beach’s LIV and STORY, has taken the third floor of his popular Pan-Asian eatery, Komodo Miami, and turned it into Komodo Lounge. The intimate nightlife venue boasts a full bar, bold aesthetics and special weekend programming. The hip space is full of trendsetting art work including unique pop art inspired decor by renowned artists such as Mari Kim and Hebru Brantley. To no surprise, Grutman has top tier musicians and celebrities perform, as well as both big time headliners and up-and-coming DJs who drive the Lounge's weekend programming.


And what better cuisine for "fighting" than offered by Cecconi's of West Hollywood:

http://www.cecconiswesthollywood.com/

Cecconi’s serves hand-made pasta, seafood and dishes from Italy using the finest ingredients. In addition to the flagship restaurant in Mayfair, London, Cecconi’s has outposts in Miami, Istanbul, Berlin, Barcelona and DUMBO, New York.

Remarkably, all of this "fighting" involved incurring expenses on the same day at nearby Craig's:

https://craigs.la/

Jeff Ross calls Craig's "The Olive Garden for celebrities" - a great place to see and be seen, and of course to get that critical "fighting" nutrition.

In any event, this is posted as a friendly reminder that Avenatti has done $104k of fighting and only has $10k of fight left in him.

If you donated before, then it's time to re-up, quit wasting your money on Democratic campaigns and candidates, and make sure that Avenatti can check four bags on his Southwest Airlines flight to Puerto Rico (for two) in November.

You can make those donations here, so pay up, tightwads:

https://www.thefightpac.org/



Beto Is Running!

Up stairs:



A charity event:



See Beto run.

Run, Beto, run!

Judge Dismisses Stormy Daniels' Defamation Claim Against Cohen

The first of the two last dances from the Stormy Daniels lawsuit against Cohen and Trump is over.

Today, Avenatti actually won a motion, which may be a first for him in this case. The funny part is that it is Avenatti's own motion to dismiss the defamation claim against Cohen.

This case has two parts (a) a plea to have the hush agreement declared invalid, and (b) a defamation claim against Cohen. The defamation claim against Cohen was for saying "just because something is untrue, doesn't mean it isn't damaging" or something to that effect when asked why he paid $130k if Daniels didn't briefly boff Trump in Tahoe.

Avenatti had filed a separate defamation case against Trump which was thrown out a while back, and which landed Daniels $300k in the hole for what was essentially a frivolous case. As it turns out Trump says a lot of shit on Twitter which no one takes seriously. Quelle suprise.

After his client got nailed in the Trump defamation case, Avenatti moved to withdraw the defamation claim from the Cohen/Trump case. This is amusing in a couple of ways, because Avenatti had been bragging, in the wake of the $300k spanking, that he'd make it up in damages and fees in the Cohen/Trump case. His "logic" of course, failed to take into an account that an award of attorney fees in the Cohen/Trump case would not make up the $300k that Daniels herself is on the hook for in the Trump case. In other words, SHE doesn't benefit from an award of fees.

Be that as it may - AVENATTI WON A ROUND! He has successfully convinced a judge to allow him to withdraw the only claim in the lawsuit that was seeking monetary damages. This is remarkable in that (a) he'll probably already be tweeting about his "win", and (b) he has been fairly consistent in losing the overwhelming majority of motions in the case so far.

The ruling is here:

https://www.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.cacd.704250/gov.uscourts.cacd.704250.108.0_1.pdf

There is one motion left in this case, however.

As noted above, the withdrawal of the defamation claim only leaves the declaratory judgment on the hush agreement remaining.

The problem there is that the defendants - Trump and Cohen - have already given up on that one and have agreed that the contract is void, invalid, unenforceable, and have submitted a covenant not to seek enforcement of the contract. Accordingly, Trump and Cohen have moved to dismiss the case because there is literally nothing left to argue about.

Avenatti, however, is fighting against that total win. He believes he can get attorney fees out of an odd theory that "they changed their mind to late" in so many words which, if you think about it, is pretty funny in view of the fact that he's been fighting to withdraw his own defamation claim for the last few weeks.

When I last checked, the hearing on the motion to dismiss the rest of the case was scheduled for February 4, 2019. That, however was changed, by an ominous order issued by the court on January 29, specifically:

Jan 29, 2019

CORRECTED SCHEDULING NOTICE by Judge S. James Otero. The Court finds the following motions suitable for disposition without oral argument and vacates the hearing on the MOTION to Strike Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint filed by Defendant Michael Cohen. [ECF #31] and the MOTION to AMEND Complaint filed by Plaintiff Stephanie Clifford. [ECF #91], set for hearing on February 4, 2019.


What this means is that Judge Otero has decided he's had enough of these two yo-yo's arguing in his courtroom, and has also decided that the parties briefs on dismissal of the rest of the case are sufficient to decide the matter.

The upshot of all of this is that the last gasp of the Stormy Daniels litigation may drop at any time, if Otero decides he's had enough of this nonsense of Avenatti insisting to maintain a lawsuit against two people who have already conceded the entirety of the remaining point.

Stay tuned.

BREAKING: Biden Passes - Will Not Run



On edit: Please look at the subject line, and the picture.

Manafort Sealed Sentencing Hearing Continued For Return Sealed Engagement Feb 13th

Not as interesting as other news, but FWIW:


Feb 4, 2019

MINUTE ORDER as to PAUL J. MANAFORT, JR. (1). As noted by the Court on the record at the Sealed Hearing held this date, it is hereby ORDERED that the parties file by the Close of Business on Wednesday, February 6, 2019, their proposed redactions to the transcript of today's Sealed Hearing, it is further ORDERED that any supplemental submissions from the parties are due by 12:00 PM (noon) on Friday, February 8, 2019, an additional Sealed Hearing has been set for Wednesday, February 13, 2019, at 9:30 AM in Courtroom 3 before Judge Amy Berman Jackson, it is further ORDERED that Sentencing in this case is reset for Wednesday, March 13, 2019, at 9:30 AM in Courtroom 3 before Judge Amy Berman Jackson. Sentencing Memoranda from the parties remain due by February 22, 2019. SO ORDERED. By Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 2/4/2019. (jth)
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