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Thread: Chaos and the Anti-Thread

  1. #2146
    Super Moderator Wind's Avatar
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    From Just Security, author Danial Shaviro breaks down the indictments of Weisselberg and the Trump Org.

    Dan points out, among other things, how the mainstream media is getting it wrong. These are highlights. (the article gives details for each point)

    1. This is no mere fringe benefits case. It is a straight-out fraud case, claiming that the defendants kept double books: phony ones to show the tax authorities, and accurate ones to be hidden from view.

    2. It is not just a state and local income tax fraud case. It is also – via New York State fraud, conspiracy, and grand larceny statutes – a federal income tax fraud case. The indictment’s first three and longest counts detail a “scheme to defraud” the federal Internal Revenue Service, including through a “conspiracy” with multiple “overt acts,” and the commission of “grand larceny.”

    3. If the Manhattan DA can prove the facts asserted, this is not a trivial case, or one that ordinarily would not be brought, or one that bespeaks political bias, or is just about pressuring a witness whom the DA wants to “turn.” It is unimaginable to me that any prosecutor would not bring these or similar charges under the asserted facts.

    4. The true economic deal alleged by the indictment – Weisselberg had a fixed economic deal with the Trump Corporation. He was to be paid a fixed amount – which, for the years 2011 through 2018, equaled $940,000 annually, comprised of $540,000 denominated as base salary and $400,000 denominated as an end-of-year bonus. Nothing else in the employment agreement and arrangements between the parties that the indictment discusses would change this fixed bottom line. Any supposed “fringe benefit” – and, as we will see, the term really does not fit well here – that the Trump Organization (through any of its entities) furnished to Weisselberg would be treated as compensation in the company’s internal records, and charged against his $940,000 receipt.

    5. Fraudulent double bookkeeping – Implementing this scheme required having two inconsistent sets of records: (a) the fake ones for tax reporting that excluded a part of his compensation (under the parties’ financial deal and the company’s secret bookkeeping), and (b) the true accounting records that the company maintained privately.

    6. Additional overt acts to conceal the fraud – Even in the company’s own ledgers, as distinct from those that were disclosed to relevant tax authorities, Weisselberg took steps to conceal his receipt of benefits.

    7. A large number of the items that the company funded (and then subtracted from Weisselberg’s reported compensation) had no relationship whatsoever to the sort of items that, under appropriate circumstances, might potentially constitute tax-free employee fringe benefits.

    8. Fraudulent mischaracterization of employee compensation, supported by deceptive bookkeeping

    9. Evasion of New York City income tax by falsely denying local residence status

    10. What was Donald Trump’s role in all this? The indictment notes that “tuition expenses for Weisselberg’s family members [were]… paid by personal checks drawn on the account of and signed by Donald J. Trump.” It also states that, in 2005, “the Trump Corporation, acting through its president,” entered into the New York City apartment lease on Weisselberg’s behalf” – listed as an overt act in furtherance of the claimed conspiracy to evade federal income tax (Second Count; Overt Act #1).

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  5. #2148
    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
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    More explosions. I mean, who really needs experts or knowledge? Just light 'em off next to the truck. What could go wrong?


    Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uy-5Bwq7sxM


    The Illuminator's guild is most displeased.

    You can see a closer, longer video here.

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  7. #2149
    Super Moderator Wind's Avatar
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    A reality check from Chris Hedges.


    Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXYsGuBdzM4

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  9. #2150
    Super Moderator Wind's Avatar
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    War, what is it good for?


    Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_Pa8kf5da0

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  11. #2151
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    ShowerCap's at it again...

    Tom Barrack got arrested for operating illegally as an unregistered agent of a foreign power, and at some point, the nation’s evangelical “Christians” will explain to the rest of us why the object of their adulation surrounds himself exclusively with felons and traitors. Surely. Any day now. Two weeks. (Maybe we should also ask ‘em to clarify just how these “populists” manage to scrounge up $250 million in bail money on a moment’s notice.)

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