Americans are by now broadly aware of the threat posed by Chinese-owned TikTok, including its threat…
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TikTok’s Latest Assault: Ripping Off American Artists and Songwriters

Americans are by now broadly aware of the threat posed by Chinese-owned TikTok, including its threat to U.S. national security.

In recent days, we’ve witnessed in real time another emerging TikTok threat reaching the headlines:  The threat it poses to intellectual property protections, which undergird America’s status as the most artistically and musically productive and influential nation in human history.

Universal Music Group, however, has decided to stand up and fight back by removing its catalog of songs – including artists like Taylor Swift, Drake and Billie Eilish – from TikTok.

Tone-Deaf TikTok has built its aggressive worldwide empire largely on the backs of music created by American artists, as even its corporate leadership openly admits.  As TikTok’s very own…[more]

February 08, 2024 • 12:44 PM

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Yes, They Spied On Trump Print
By Byron York
Wednesday, February 16 2022
While the FBI was doing spying of its own, the Clinton team was spying, too, and trying to get the FBI and CIA involved. It was all part of a larger plan to push the "narrative" of Trump-Russia collusion.

One of the most contentious claims Donald Trump ever made was his insistence that he had been the target of spying. He made the charge in several different ways. For example, in March 2017, Trump, just two months in office, tweeted: "Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my 'wires tapped' in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!" Two years later, in April 2019, he was less specific but equally adamant when he said, "There was absolutely spying into my campaign." In August 2020, during his Republican National Committee acceptance speech, he said, "Remember this: They spied on my campaign."

Each time, all the usual anti-Trump voices rushed to accuse the president of lying. But over the years, a series of facts emerged that, while they did not support some of Trump's most specific charges  Obama did not wiretap Trump in Trump Tower  they did support the larger idea that Trump was indeed the target of spying. 

We learned that in the final days of the 2016 presidential race, when the Clinton campaign came up with the Steele dossier  a collection of sensational and unsupported allegations about Trump and Russia  the FBI used the dossier to win approval to wiretap Carter Page, a low-level former Trump campaign adviser. Then we learned that also in 2016, the FBI used a confidential informant, a professor named Stefan Halper, to spy on Page and George Papadopoulos, another low-level Trump adviser. Then we learned that in 2016, the FBI sent an undercover agent  a woman who used the alias Azra Turk  to secretly record conversations with Papadopoulos.

So there is ample evidence to say that the FBI spied on the Trump campaign. Now we are learning about another type of spying  the Clinton campaign spying on the Trump campaign. The revelations are coming from the investigation of John Durham, the special counsel appointed by the Trump administration, and retained by the Biden administration, to probe the origins of the Trump-Russia collusion investigation. 

In a court filing Friday, Durham reported that in July 2016, a tech executive named Rodney Joffe (he is unnamed in the court papers, but his name has been widely reported) worked with the Clinton campaign's law firm to "mine internet data," some of it "non-public and/or proprietary"  that means secret  to search for information that could be used to claim a Trump-Russia connection. Among the secret data that was "exploited," according to Durham, was internet traffic from Trump Tower, from Donald Trump's Central Park West apartment building and  after Trump was elected  the executive office of the president of the United States, or EOP. 

Joffe's company, Durham says, "had come to access and maintain dedicated servers for the EOP as part of a sensitive arrangement"  a government contract  to provide tech services. They then "exploited this arrangement by mining the EOP's [internet] traffic and other data for the purpose of gathering derogatory information about Donald Trump." 

After that, the Clinton team went to the CIA to try to get the nation's spy agency interested in the anti-Trump effort. That mirrored earlier Clinton approaches to the FBI, when Clinton operatives tried to interest agents in what is known as the "Alfa Bank" story, which was a phony allegation that there were all sorts of suspicious connections between a Russian bank and the Trump campaign. 

The bigger goal of all of it, Durham says, was "to establish 'an inference' and 'narrative' tying then-candidate Trump to Russia." So there was a two-track operation going on: While the FBI was doing spying of its own, the Clinton team was spying, too, and trying to get the FBI and CIA involved. It was all part of a larger plan to push the "narrative" of Trump-Russia collusion. 

How did it end? You'll remember that a special counsel, Robert Mueller, using all the resources and powers of federal law enforcement, searched for collusion for years and could never establish that it happened, much less that any Trump campaign figures might have been involved.

The new revelation is confirmation for some of the Republicans who uncovered the early clues of the spying operation. "Democrat-paid operatives illegally hacked their political opponents' communications during a presidential campaign and then did it again to a sitting president and the White House staff," said Devin Nunes, who as House Intelligence Committee chairman investigated the spying allegations. "These actions are characteristic of third-world dictatorships, not democracies. It is undoubtedly the biggest political scandal of our lifetime." (Nunes, who just left Congress, is now CEO of the new Trump social media venture.)

Byron York is chief political correspondent for The Washington Examiner


Notable Quote   
"A nursing student bludgeoned to death near a tranquil Georgia college campus. A developmentally disabled person raped in Boston. A mother and son killed in a head-on crash in Colorado. New York's finest assaulted in the heralded Times Square.The roll-call of victims violated by Joe Biden's border policies is rising as fast as the hotel and welfare tabs for sanctuary cities, thrusting an American…[more]
— John Solomon, Chief Executive Officer and Editor in Chief of Just the News
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