RIGHT WING EXTREMISM
Watch: Alaska GOP Lawmaker Says It’s a ‘Benefit to Society’ When ‘Child Abuse Is Fatal’ Because There’s a ‘Cost Savings’
Alaska Republican state Representative David Eastman stunned his fellow lawmakers on Monday when he declared society benefits when children who are so badly abused die, because there’s less financial cost to the state for their care.
“In the case where child abuse is fatal, obviously it’s not good for the child, but it’s actually a benefit to society because there aren’t needed government services and whatnot over the whole course of that child’s life,” Rep. Eastman said (video below) during a hearing of the Judiciary Committee, as the Anchorage Daily News reports.
When pressed, he continued, saying: “Talking dollars, now you’ve got a $1.5 million price tag here for victims of fatal child abuse. It gets argued periodically that it’s actually a cost savings because that child is not going to need any of those government services that they might otherwise you know, be entitled to receive and need based on, you know, growing up in this type of environment.”
Trevor Storrs, president and CEO of the Alaska Children’s Trust who was testifying at the hearing countered, “I’m really, I’m not even sure how to answer that, that there’s a cost saving to fit that to the death of a child. The impact that that has on a family and us as a society, when a child is lost, especially to child abuse, neglect is unmeasurable and it’s it’s a hugely tragic.”
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A Democratic state lawmaker, Rep. Andrew Gray, “later recounted that he and his husband had adopted their child from the foster care system who had several adverse childhood experiences. He said it may not have been intended, but the implication from Eastman’s comments was that his child was better off dead.”
”I would just say for me personally, my child is the greatest joy I’ve ever had — that there is no price tag on that,” Rep. Gray said.
This is far from the first time Eastman has stunned his fellow lawmakers. Last month the Anchorage Daily News reported he “compared a speech given by President Joe Biden to one given by Nazi leader Adolf Hitler in 1938. The post included a photo of Hitler and a link to the text of his speech. The link went to a Holocaust-denial website.”
Rep. Eastman, according to a Politico report on his court “trial for disloyalty,” has a lifetime membership to the Oath Keepers, a far right “militia” group that has been called an “organized violent extremist group.” Oath Keepers’ founder and leader Stewart Rhodes was found guilty by a jury of seditious conspiracy over his actions surrounding the January 6, 2021 insurrection.
Eastman, according to his campaign website, was named “an Abraham Lincoln Fellow by the Claremont Institute for the Study of Statesmanship and Political Philosophy.” The Claremont Institute is a far-right think tank that has been home to former Trump attorney and “coup memo” author John Eastman (no relation.)
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On his personal Twitter page Eastman posted a video supporting this past weekend’s “Rage Against the War Machine,” an event allegedly for those opposed to U.S. supporting Ukraine over Russia’s illegal war against that sovereign nation. Notably in attendance at what has been suggested was a pro-Russia rally were Ron Paul, Jill Stein, Tulsi Gabbard, and Dennis Kucinich.
A former Tea Party activist, Eastman is now a pro-MAGA extremist who attended Trump’s Jan. 6 speech and later walked to the Capitol. He falsely blamed the attack on the Capitol on Antifa, while claiming that the 2020 election was “abused to such a degree that, in my view, it can no longer be called an election.” He said he attended the events that day in D.C. because “I think there’s a lot of justified concerns.”
Watch Rep. Eastman’s remarks about the “benefits” of fatal child abuse below or at this link.
Not even sure what to say here. Rep. Eastman says it’s a benefit to society when children who are victims of abuse die “because there aren’t needs for government services over the course of that child’s life” when they die as a results of abuse. #akleg pic.twitter.com/0hV4o7AzTY
— The Alaska Landmine (@alaskalandmine) February 21, 2023
Image via Facebook
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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM
Trump Appeals After Judge Agrees With Special Counsel on Crime-Fraud Exception and Requires His Attorney to Testify
Donald Trump’s attorneys have appealed a ruling that requires one of his lawyers to testify before a grand jury investigating his unlawful removal, retention, and refusal to return classified documents from the White House.
Attorneys for the Special Counsel “said there is evidence of a deliberate effort not to turn over all the material covered by the subpoena,” The Washington Post reports, citing people familiar with the matter.
U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell had reportedly agreed with Special Counsel Smith that there is sufficient evidence proving Donald Trump may have committed a crime via his attorneys, and ruled his attorney must testify before a grand jury. The ruling, which was not made public, was handed down Friday night, NBC News reported Wednesday afternoon.
Judge Howell “ruled in favor of applying the ‘crime fraud’ exception to Trump’s attorney-client privilege and ordered Trump lawyer Evan Corcoran to testify before the federal grand jury.”
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Trump’s attorneys have already appealed the ruling.
“People familiar with the matter said an appeals panel has already begun reviewing the decision, after Trump’s lawyers appealed,” The Washington Post adds. “The extraordinarily quick timeline suggests that the judges — all nominated by Democratic presidents — intend to rule swiftly.”
Trump could take his case all the way to the Supreme Court, but The Post says it’s “not clear he would have a much better chance of success there.”
According to an NBC News report from October, Corcoran directed another Trump attorney, Christina Bobb, to sign the letter claiming a thorough search of Mar-a-Lago had been made and all classified or “sensitive” documents had been returned. That was proven untrue after federal agents, executing a search warrant, recovered hundreds of documents with classified markings.
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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM
‘Complete Dog Whistle’: Experts Say Trump Sending Coded Message to Far-Right With Location of Next Rally
As Donald Trump continues his recently launched campaign for 2024, his next stop is raising the eyebrows of some experts who say it’s a deliberate message to the far-right, AZ Central reported.
Trump plans to hold a rally this Saturday in the city of Waco, Texas — on the anniversary of the infamous ATF siege that ended in the fiery deaths of cult leader David Koresh and over 80 of his followers, including 25 children.
The event has been a rallying point for many in far-right anti-government movements, including Timothy McVeigh, who carried out the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City in 1995, which caused the deaths 198 people, including 19 children. The Waco siege has also been the catalyst for a wave of anti-government conspiracy theories since then. It also is central to many pro-2nd Amendment advocates, since the ATF initially carried out a raid on Koresh’s compound accusing him and his group of stockpiling illegal weapons.
Experts speaking to AZ Central say that’s exactly why Trump chose Waco.
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“Waco is hugely symbolic on the far right,” said Heidi Beirich, co-founder of the Global Project Against Hate and Extremism. “There’s not really another place in the U.S. that you could pick that would tap into these deep veins of anti-government hatred – Christian nationalist skepticism of the government – and I find it hard to believe that Trump doesn’t know that Waco represents all of these things.”
“Waco has a sense of grievance among people that I know he’s (Trump’s) got to be trying to tap into,” Beirich said. “He’s being unjustly accused, like the Branch Davidians were unjustly accused – and the deep state is out to get them all.”
Deputy director for data analytics at the Southern Poverty Law Center, Megan Squire, was a little more direct.
“Give me a break! There’s no reason to go to Waco, Texas, other than one thing – in April,” Squire said. “I can’t even fathom what’s what that’s about other than just a complete dog whistle – actually forget dog whistle, that is just a train whistle to the folks who still remember that event and are still mad about it.”
RIGHT WING EXTREMISM
‘Chilling’: Law Enforcement ‘Seriously’ Investigating Threats Ahead of Possible Trump Indictment Says Top WaPo Reporter
Ahead of a possible indictment of Donald Trump, law enforcement agencies are investigating “chilling” threats, including against Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, according to top Washington Post investigative reporter Carol Leonnig.
Leonnig was careful to say she is not aware of any of the threats being deemed credible, but also noted that “all sorts of law enforcement agencies” seem to be taking much more interest than some agencies did in the weeks before the January 6, 2021 insurrection.
“I have received copies and screenshots and internal documents and emails flagging concerns about specific protests, investigations into specific online threats that have been made that are not yet determined to be ‘credible and likely to occur’ but have been chilling nonetheless in terms of the threats that have been made about killing certain people,” Leonning, a Pulitzer-Prize winning author, said Tuesday on MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House.”
“Claims of, you know, ‘Alvin Bragg needs to needs to die,’ and claims online that could just be, you know, bravado, but are being seriously investigated and checked into this time around, ones that were not checked into as clearly at all in the weeks before January 6, despite significant warnings to the FBI about what these threats meant.”
Mirroring Leonnig’s reporting, Rolling Stone, citing law enforcement reports, on Tuesday noted: “Violent extremists are advocating lethal attacks and proclaiming their willingness to die for the cause.”
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“U.S. Capitol Police, the D.C. Fusion Center, and the Federal Highway Administration have all circulated warnings about the uptick in online threats over the past 48 hours. The bulletins and threat assessments detail some of the online threats and discussions about the use of specific tactics and methods for carrying out attacks — including online discussions about lethal attacks if Trump is arrested.”
On Saturday in an explosive series of social media posts Donald Trump urged his supporters to “protest” and “take our nation back.”
That “announcement was met with an immediate increase in violent online rhetoric and expressed threats toward government and law enforcement targets perceived as participating in a political persecution of the former president, as well as calls for ‘Civil War’ more generally.”
The DC Fusion Center, which analyzes threats, in a report stated it “assesses that potential criminal justice actions taken toward a former US president — or actions perceived to be taken toward the former president — remain a ‘line in the sand’ for [Domestic Violent Extremist] communities and thus have the potential to manifest in violence toward government targets or political officials,” Rolling Stone added.
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