We’ll now find out if Dems really care about Russian meddling

first_imgWhat if a major media organization had taken that ginned-up dossier, one that included a number of unsubstantiated stories about Clinton’s supposed sexual fetishes and shady business dealings with foreign powers, and put it online so millions of readers could judge the content for themselves?What if the firm that helped disseminate that file had been feeding a number of reporters alleged scoops that helped shape post-election coverage?Would we now be engaged in a national conversation about the responsibility journalists have to avoid broadcasting questionable information about candidates?Would the outlets that ran with those stories apologize for having regurgitated items that might have been concocted by the Russians themselves?Because all of that sure sounds like “fake news” to me.According to the Washington Post, much of this likely happened — but in reverse.It claims that Marc E. Elias, a lawyer representing the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee, had hired the Washington, D.C., firm Fusion GPS to do opposition work. The firm was working on behalf of Russians to undermine American sanctions.And it is likely that Russian sources were in part responsible for some of their bogus assertions.If the Post is correct, those involved in hiring the firm lied about it for a year.Yes, we knew that Democrats had contracted the opposition research, but we didn’t know it was the national party and presidential candidate who did so.(Reports also say that one unknown Republican was involved with Fusion GPS before the firm hired Christopher Steele, a former British spy, to author the dossier.)How often did the FBI use the dossier as a pretext for Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrants? Seems like a reasonable question.According to CNN, it was used in part to justify a FISA warrant on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. Not one vote was manipulated.Americans still possess free will.On the other hand, there’s no doubt Russia would love to instigate unrest in the United States.Democrats have been telling us this for a year.So those who automatically dismiss this inconvenient Fusion GPS story as irrelevant only reveal that they were never very serious about the Russian interference in the first place.David Harsanyi is a senior editor at The Federalist  and a nationally syndicated columnist.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homes Maybe another Robert Mueller is needed to get to the truth, since independent counsels don’t seem to function under these strictures — or any, for that matter.This is all old news, they tell us.While Clinton’s plans for the presidency did indeed fail, I’ve been informed on numerous occasions that a foreign attack on our democratic process is tantamount to a declaration of war.I mean, we know that Clinton has been tied to Russian uranium interests going back to 2009, but this all happened just last year.Surely, those who are ready to condemn Attorney General Jeff Sessions for attending the same party as a Russian diplomat are somewhat concerned about the DNC hiring a firm that was actively attempting to weaken the Magnitsky Act during a national election.Now, some of us believe much of the Russia scare is a politically motivated effort to undermine the legitimacy of an election.Voting totals were never “hacked.”center_img CNN has also reported that the FBI paid Steele for some of his efforts.The Washington Post reported that just a few weeks before the election, Steele had reached an agreement with the FBI for it to pay him to continue his work, and the plug was later pulled.Did it pay him for other work?The dossier reached the highest levels of the intelligence community. Then-FBI Director James Comey briefed President Obama and President-elect Trump about the dossier after the election.Information leaked from the dossier was what really revved up the Russia-collusion scare in January.No doubt there is much more to this story.For now, though, Fusion GPS officials have taken the Fifth (despite what you may have heard from some reporters) and asked a federal judge block a House intelligence committee request for access to bank records.  Categories: Editorial, OpinionIf we found out that Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and the Republican National Committee had paid a firm working for the Russians to create a file of fabricated attacks on Hillary Clinton during the election cycle, would the media treat it as an impeachable offense?Would such efforts be considered an attack on the foundations of our democracy?Would liberal columnists make sensationalist claims that the Russians had “carried out a successful plan to pick the government of the United States”?Would they argue that the election had been rigged?Would they demand that Republicans pick their country over their party?Of course they would.last_img read more

Kelly has best interest of Saratoga at heart

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion Meg is interested in a long-term solution to homelessness, and not at the expense of ignoring the needs that exist in our city today. I have heard her Meg say, “I support Code Blue, its extensive volunteer base, and every effort to stop homeless deaths on our streets.” This is the kind of dedicated public servant and proven leader we need.Meg is committed to “an intensively developed urban core and an economically vibrant central business district, with well-defined urban edges and an outlying area comprised of open lands, a landscape or rural character and low-density residential development.”She understands the uniqueness of Broadway. She also has a plan for affordable housing so that our workers and our children can live here.I believe the best candidate to lead our great city forward as mayor is Meg Kelly.Daniel ShieldsSaratoga SpringsMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusSchenectady, Saratoga casinos say reopening has gone well; revenue down 30%Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homes I believe the best candidate to lead our great city forward as mayor is Meg Kelly. Meg grew up and raised her family in Saratoga Springs. She was an LPGA professional golfer for 25 years and has helped to improve many golf swings (including mine). She worked tirelessly to start and grow the Saratoga Children’s Theatre, benefiting the lives of thousands of children (including mine) and our community.In 2016, Meg was appointed deputy mayor, where she has put her results-driven, hard-working and honest business ethic to work. Saratoga needs this type of leadership, regardless of the form of city government voters choose.last_img read more

Letters to the Editor for Saturday, March 30

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionMeet to resolve St. Clare’s pension caseThe now defunct St. Clare’s Hospital was dissolved by New York state, the diocese and Ellis.  Trump’s treatment of McCain is gallingIn his recent diatribe attacking John McCain while addressing factory workers in Lima, Ohio, our magnificently untalented and unqualified president Donald Trump has managed to sink to a new nadir in his personal behavior.If memory serves, thank-you notes are sent to those people who have done something to aid or comfort the family of the bereaved. Donald Trump deserves no gratitude from the McCain family because he provided neither aid nor comfort; only derision and scorn. In point of fact, he did everything in his power to demean and dishonor the death of John McCain, an American hero, by briefly lowering the flags over the White House before they were raised again.Only after a fierce backlash by Americans were the flags lowered again. Yet Mr. Trump has the unmitigated gall to wonder why he didn’t get a thank-you note for his role in the funeral. Who would send a thank-you note acknowledging such foolishness? I submit that Mr. Trump only knows one hero — Donald Trump.If I remember correctly, the family of John McCain sent a note to Mr. Trump requesting that he not attend the funeral at all.  Perhaps the McCain family and the American people in general should send Mr. Trump a thank you note for that instead.Michael DeckerSchenectady The assets are gone and the three are left finger-pointing over who is responsible for the pensions. All three need to be put in a room until this issue is solved. The lawyers got paid. The state watchdog was not watching. The Catholic Church is ducking its moral obligations. Ellis got the assets. Shame on all of you until this debt is paid. Rick GreenBallston Lake Cuomo benefits from film tax breakOn March 20, The Gazette printed an editorial about the state’s film tax credit being too generous. The editorial did not mention the amount of political donations that our governor received from this industry. Last year, The Gazette published my letter on the opinion page which I wrote about this subject.“Our governor and his failed economic development programs have cost state taxpayers $4.6 billion since 2011 with little or no return. New York state spends $420 million a year on the film industries tax incentives.“This industry does little to support any long-term jobs. They shoot their movies/programs and leave the state with a huge tax break. Our governor received $860,000 in political donations from the film industry in California and another $400,000 from the film industry based in New York City — taxpayer money paid out and political donations in his pocket.”Remember our failed state economic development programs when elections come around.Jay JanczakBallston SpaMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusGov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homeslast_img read more

Letters to the Editor for Thursday, June 20

first_imgIsrael letter reveals a lot about writerJames Van Dijk’s June 15 letter attacking Israel is instructive in a macabre, Nazi sort of way. When a person comes right out and says a sovereign nation should cease to exist,  and it happens to be the nation of the Jews, it really makes you think. Funny how the letter writer doesn’t also come right out with a solution for where Israel’s 7 million Jews are supposed to go.Jessica Hornik EvansAlplausTrump not getting credit he deservesI, for one, am tired of CNN, CBS, MSNBC and 90 percent of the newspapers constantly putting President Trump down. Is President Trump a perfect president? No he’s not. But if you look at the good things he has done, lowest unemployment, high GDP, brought more jobs back to this country than any other president before him. Also the best raise on Social Security, then he’s the best president we have had in many years. Does the news give him any credit at all? No, none.Also, all the Democrats do is fight him all the way. The border is a mess. If the Democrats get in power, all the good that Trump has done will be undone. And if America goes socialist, only God will be able to help us. Remember, nothing is free. Someone always pays, and we will lose all our rights.Also, The Gazette should give a whole page for people’s opinions. Oh, but that would take away the left’s agenda.It seems to me The Gazette leans way to the left and favors the Democratic party. I noticed in the May 7 edition all the opinions were people knocking our president. That’s right, our president. Like it or not, he is the president and has done more for this country in two years than Obama did in eight. The Democrats keep saying Obama started the recovery. What a bunch of baloney.Tony MonteDuanesburgZlotnick, Isachsen Kerr team for MiltonI support Benny Zlotnick, Barbara Kerr, and Ryan Isachsen for the town of Milton because of their trustworthiness, responsiveness, and vision. Zlotnick has been approachable, genuine, insightful and honest both as a council member and as a volunteer in Scouting. He has my trust to keep taxes low while making sound decisions. Kerr has been a vocal supporter of the town’s purchase of Camp Boyhaven as she, like Mr. Zlotnick, saw it as a rare opportunity to secure beautiful park land to benefit the well-being of current and future Milton residents. I support Mr. Isachsen based on his work on the Ethics Board and because of his resident-focused vision.Given that the current supervisor failed to respond to emails sent in 2018, followed by his failure to close the Boyhaven deal, I feel certain that Zlotnick, Kerr and Isachsen will bring the positive change needed to maintain a healthy balance of development and protected, recreational land for the people of Milton. I’m confident Zlotnick, Kerr, and Isachsen have the experience to lead our town responsibly; I hope my neighbors will consider the issues at hand and character of these fine residents.Melissa TaylorMiltonMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationGov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18 Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionSt. Clare’s workers deserve care firstI can’t believe that New York state has approved licenses for undocumented immigrants but cannot come to a decision on the pensions of the St. Clare’s retirees.If immigrants want licenses, make them citizens first. Some clown in the Legislature said that this would be good for the economy. What about the St. Clare’s retirees having a pension to spend in the community? Wouldn’t that boost our economy? And these are citizens.I’m not against immigrants trying to get away from war-torn countries, but I am against giving them benefits before they become legal citizens. I think the Legislature and the governor should have focused on St. Claire’s before spending the time on these licenses. What’s wrong with this picture? And please don’t lecture me on “humanity.” Think of the St. Claire’s retirees. This was inhumane.Lorraine VanDerWerkenSchenectady last_img read more

Letters to the Editor for Thursday, Dec. 5

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionStop bridge hits by banning truck trafficReading Harry Darling’s Nov. 28 letter (“Raise bridge, tracks to eliminate crashes”), I felt the need to jump in.He correctly argues that raising the bridge would solve the problem of large trucks striking it.I proffer that although it would be the best solution, that bridge will never be raised. There were many reasons discussed when the road was rehabilitated a few years ago. Among the reasons cited was the cost to do so.I’m sure the railroad doesn’t want to spend the money. But moreover the real reason is very few folks want Glenridge Road to become a “truck route.”The best way to prevent that is to block their access.Edward VanderwallClifton ParkLeaders must work to inspire faith againThe election of the Once-ler for president aside, there are many symptoms of a worsening national illness. We have lost faith.The concept of faith has been hijacked by discussions of religion. And though it is relevant, it’s by no means exclusive.Faith plays out in almost every area of our lives, from marriage to driving.And there is no question that faith for Americans among Americans is flagging; faith in government is incredibly poor.Faith, real faith, that of relationships built through experience and collaboration, integrity and honesty through time, is essential for our republic.Without it, we will be left with some form of oligarchy pretending to be a democracy.Some might argue we are there already, that wealth is the only power.The reasons for this diminished faith are too complicated and numerous to discuss here.Suffice it to say that the ability to foster and manipulate this loss of faith for political and economic gain is at the core.There are political and economic beneficiaries of this loss of faith.Yet, if Americans, as represented by a variety of different sub-groups, no longer believe in the integrity of their leaders, the Constitution, local authorities (police, local government), the integrity of news outlets, their neighbors, basically the nation’s functioning, then that is a disaster for our future.Yet, sadly, there are very definite reasons for a loss of faith in all of those things.It’s time that we all, beginning with our leaders, start to inspire faith.James CiminoSchenectadyShow more respect to dedicated nursesMy friend retired after 40 years from a local nursing home. She was a dedicated LPN from the old school. She ironed her uniform before work. She answered call lights and worked with aides.She was the kind of nurse you would want for yourself. She was never written-up. People loved and respected her. When she retired, agency staff and coworkers gave her gifts they could not afford.The outpouring of respect was overwhelming. Upper management did nothing.When it was pointed out, they invited her to lunch. No special recognition. No gold watch. Nothing.I watched as average employee benefits erode. I listened to the corner office make crass jokes. Bonuses were given to upper management who were soon let go. There is a constant turnover.I suspect that the CEO gives excellent presentations to the board about profit. Nursing is about caring and empathy.When upper management doesn’t recognize a distinguished 40-year career, you have a head without a heart. Dedicated nurses need to be shown better.Take the time to recognize the role model nurses who stand and deliver in our community. To hear my dear friend get emotional over what was done by her friends and for what was not done by upper management is difficult. How do you want to be treated after 40 years? When a business loses its heart, it ceases to serve.Rick GreenBallston LakeMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homeslast_img read more

Alms race

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Standard of Livingston

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Summer in the city

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The people’s funds

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Retail: From minor to major

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