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SOROS: Gov. Watchdog Says He’s Bankrolling Campaign To Amend Ireland’s Constitution

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(Via The Daily Caller)

Left-wing billionaire donor George Soros is illegally bankrolling a campaign to repeal the Eight Amendment of Ireland’s constitution, which protects “the right to life of the unborn,” according to an independent government watchdog.

Ireland’s Standards in Public Office Commission (SIPO), has ordered left-wing organization Amnesty International to return a donation of more than $162,000 from Soros’ Open Society Foundations (OSF). The donation is in violation of the 1997 Electoral Act, which bars foreign organizations from giving donations of more than $100 for “political purposes,” according to SIPO.

Amnesty has refused to return the donation, a defiant decision that OSF is supporting, British newspaper The Times reported on Wednesday. Amnesty has claimed that the law is unfair.

An OSF spokesman told The Times the group is “proud to be one of the sources of support for local advocacy efforts to bring Ireland’s abortion law in line with its commitments under international human rights law.”

Irish pro-life groups have decried Soros’ interference into their politics.

“It is important to recall that the Open Society Foundation stated when giving the money to Amnesty that it was to assist the coordination of groups in Ireland with a view to repealing the 8th Amendment and taking away legal protection for the baby in the womb,” Cora Sherlock, a spokeswoman for the Irish Pro Life Campaign, told the Catholic Herald.

“The involvement of this US based organization in the Irish abortion debate represents a gross interference in our democracy and in safeguarding the right to life. Amnesty should immediately return the money and stop trying to portray itself as a victim in all of this,” Sherlock said.

Soros, a Hungarian-American who once said he considers himself “some kind of god,” has previously sparked controversy with his interference in other countries’ political processes.

Soros uses a network of nonprofits and partner organizations across Europe to try and affect the outcomes of elections in foreign countries, leaked documents show.

Soros uses his billions of dollars to support candidates who favor his open-borders worldview and oppose populist candidates around the world.

As first reported by The Daily Caller, Soros secretly paid the salaries of Moldovan government officials, including the prime minister’s chief of staff, between 2013 and 2015. Those payments were funneled through a German non-profit in order to skirt laws preventing Soros from directly paying the officials.

The 87-year-old Soros transferred $18 billion to OSF in October, ensuring his organization will continue advancing his far-left worldview around the globe long after he passes away. Soros’ son, Alex Soros, has stepped up his own political activities in recent years as his father has gotten older.

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1 Comment

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    December 28, 2017 at 4:25 pm

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Economy

China Pressuring Wall Street To Stop Trump On Trade War

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(Via Zerohedge)

If anyone still doubted President Trump’s determination to slap tariffs on all – or even more than all – Chinese goods flowing into the US, they probably don’t anymore. So far this week, the president has taken to twitter to trash his own Treasury Secretary’s efforts to restart talks with the Chinese, before Trump publicly declared on Friday that he intends to move ahead with plans to slap 25% tariffs on another $200 billion worth of goods.

Given the president’s unflinching resolve in pursuing his trade agenda, it’s understandable why a shrewd businessmen would go to great lengths to avoid getting in the middle of what looks to be a protracted geopolitical dogfight.

But unfortunately for top Wall Street firms, many of which harbor ambitions of expanding their business in China, that may no longer be an option. Because while the Trump administration has largely left them alone, the Chinese are now trying to use whatever leverage they can (i.e. preferential access to the world’s second-largest economy) to push America’s top bankers to intervene on Beijing’s behalf.

Reuters reported Friday that top Chinese officials have hastily organized an investment conference in Beijing and requested the presence of several top Wall Street firms. The conference will be chaired by former PBOC Governor Zhou Xiaochuan and ex-Goldman Sachs President John Thornton, and feature an appearance by Chinese vice-president Wang Qishan. Dubbed “the firefighter” by the Chinese people, Quishan, in addition to being the most powerful of China’s vice presidents, is also one of the senior Communist officials involved in managing the trade dispute.

While market liberalization is certainly a priority for the Chinese, it’s difficult to imagine that these top officials are planning to attend this conference – especially with so much else going on – just to brainstorm ideas about how China can proceed with opening up its financial sector.

The subtext here is obvious: China wants to figure out who in the US financial services community can help them get through to Trump and help stop this conflict before losses in China’s currency and stock market spiral out of control. And if the carrot of access doesn’t work, China has already proven adept at leveraging the stick.

(Full Article Here)

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Economy

America vs China: $200 Billion in New Tariffs Coming Soon?

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(Via Zerohedge)

In the latest installment of the story that just won’t go away, the WSJ reported on Saturday that – as Bloomberg reported first yesterday – the Trump administration plans to announce new tariffs on up to $200 billion in Chinese goods as soon as Monday and otherwise “within days”, in a move that will likely render moot the high-level, U.S.-China talks set for later this month, will prompt an immediate retaliation from China, and may lead to a sharply lower futures open on Sunday night.

The silver lining in the imminent announcement is that while previously Trump had said he would proceed with a 25% tariff level, the WSJ reports that the US will start with tariffs of “around 10%.” The level was lowered “following extensive public hearings and the submission of written comments where importers and others complained of the possible impact of the duties” as well as to try to reduce the bite on American consumers ahead of the year-end holiday shopping season, these people said.

But the people familiar said that the tariff level could be raised back to 25% if Mr. Trump concludes that Beijing doesn’t soon show signs that it is acceding to U.S. demands to change its economic policies.

Furthermore, WSJ sources said that while details were still being completed over the weekend, the tariff level could change, or that Trump could change his mind entirely. As of Saturday, an announcement was planned for Monday or Tuesday.

(Full Article Here)

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Tech

Google & China Have A Program Linking Phone Numbers To Searches

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(Via Zerohedge)

A prototype of Google’s censored search engine for China links users’ searches to their personal phone numbers, “thus making it easier for the Chinese government to monitor people’s queries,” reports The Intercept.

The search engine, codenamed Dragonfly, revolves around the Android platform and is designed to remove content deemed by government officials to be sensitive or offensive – such as information about protests, free speech, political dissidents, democracy and human rights violations.

Sources familiar with the project said that prototypes of the search engine linked the search app on a user’s Android smartphone with their phone number. This means individual people’s searches could be easily tracked – and any user seeking out information banned by the government could potentially be at risk of interrogation or detention if security agencies were to obtain the search records from Google.

the search platform also appeared to have been tailored to replace weather and air pollution data with information provided directly by an unnamed source in Beijing. The Chinese government has a record of manipulating details about pollution in the country’s cities. One Google source said the company had built a system, integrated as part of Dragonfly, that was “essentially hardcoded to force their [Chinese-provided] data.” -The Intercept

“This is very problematic from a privacy point of view, because it would allow far more detailed tracking and profiling of people’s behavior,” says Human Rights Watch senior internet research Cynthia Wong. “Linking searches to a phone number would make it much harder for people to avoid the kind of overreaching government surveillance that is pervasive in China.”

Human rights groups have slammed Dragonfly, insisting that it could result in Google “directly contributing to, or [becoming] complicit in, human rights violations.”

(Full Article Here)

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