Former Top Obama Official Says Operation Choke Point Had ‘Collateral’ Consequences

One of President Barack Obama’s former top Justice Department officials behind Operation Choke Point said Thursday the program had “unintended but collateral consequences” on banks and U.S. consumers.

“Unfortunately, as the investigations continue, so too have one of the unintended but collateral consequences of such vigilance: mass de-risking,”wrote  Michael J. Bresnick, who previously served as executive director of Obama’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force, under which Operation Choke Point was created. “Members of the industry have raised their hands in frustration and simply avoided lines of business typically associated with higher risk. This reaction to [the Justice Department’s] enforcement initiative, and similar matters brought by the Federal Trade Commission and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, is certainly understandable.”

Bresnick addressed the issue in an op-ed for American Banker.

Left-leaning Website Admits, “Europe’s Muslims hate the West”


Europe’s Muslims hate the West” is not a title from Jihad Watch or Gates of Vienna, but left-leaning website Politico. It could make one wonder if Trumpian immigration policy will one day be the norm.

The writer, Dutch novelist Leon de Winter, sets out to tackle a certain politically correct assumption. As he writes, “The first reaction to the Brussels massacres among postmodern European intellectuals was predictable: What did we, Europeans, do to them, our Muslims?” His answer?


The conventional narrative on Muslim terrorism is now familiar and multi-faceted. For example, State Department spokesman Marie Harf floated the notion last year that providing “jobs” was a solution to combating jihadism. Yet de Winter points out that “the unemployment figure in Brussels’ infamous Molenbeek neighborhood — now referred to as the jihadi hothouse of Europe —” of 30 percent is “not unusual in southern European countries or the Arab world.” He not only points out that blue-collar Belgian youth and Muslim youth are identical socioeconomically, but also writes “In Spain, youth unemployment has reached 50 percent and the welfare state is less developed than in Belgium, yet Spanish citizens aren’t blowing themselves up in metro stations.”

Key Pentagon personnel official stepping down


The architect of controversial Pentagon personnel policies, including the proposed acceptance of transgender troops, will leave his post in April, the Pentagon announced late Monday.

Brad Carson, the Pentagon’s top civilian for personnel policies, had pushed forward a string of initiatives that include opening combat jobs to women and expanded maternity leave.

“Brad Carson has developed some of the most important and groundbreaking work in years to modernize our personnel policies,” Defense Secretary Ash Carter said in a statement. “At my direction, he charted a path forward for the Department and our people that will leave a lasting legacy, and will improve the mission effectiveness, readiness and the quality of life for our civilian workforce, uniformed service members and families.

Carson had a rocky confirmation hearing last month before the Senate Armed Services Committee. He had been named to fill the spot as undersecretary for personnel on an acting basis. But a federal court determined that in performing the job before confirmation, he had violated federal law, namely the Vacancies Act.

In a statement, Carson said the Senate’s concerns about the Vacancies Act and the implementation of several key policies prompted his decision to step down. He plans to leave office in April.

Breitbart News apologizes for sarcastic story after Trump controversy prompts resignations


A popular conservative news website issued an apology Monday after publishing a sarcastic story to announce its editor-at-large’s resignation over objections to the handling of recent Donald Trump controversy.

A story headlined “Ben Shapiro Betrays Loyal Breitbart Readers in Pursuit of Fox News Contributorship,” appeared on Breitbart News Monday morning. In it, the news organization said Shapiro, who tendered his resignation as its editor-at-large Sunday, was “abandoning” all that his mentor, conservative icon and Breitbart News founder Andrew Breitbart, had worked for.

“Friends of Hamas could not be found for comment,” the report said.

The story ran next to a photograph of a baby snake hatching from its shell, apparently for emphasis,” the Breitbart report said.

It did not mention Fields’ resignation.

The story was taken down early Monday and later replaced with a statement from Joel Pollak, Breitbart News’ in-house counsel and editor-at-large.

He said the earlier story went up “as a result of a misunderstanding without going through the normal editorial channels.”

“The article was written by me as part of an effort to make light of a significant company event,” he said. “I apologize to Michelle Fields, my friend Ben Shapiro, and to everyone concerned.”

Breitbart News’ Michelle Fields, Ben Shapiro resign amid Trump controversy


Less than one week after a national political reporter said she was attacked by Donald Trump’s presidential campaign manager, the Breitbart News reporter and its editor-at-large have resigned, adding to growing unrest at the conservative news organization.

In a statement released to BuzzFeed News, reporter Michelle Fields said she tendered her resignation Sunday because of the conservative news website’s handling of the alleged assault.

Breitbart News editor-at-large Ben Shapiro also tendered his resignation Sunday night, claiming the site’s strong support for Trump and its reaction to Fields’ reported assault “betrayed” the life mission of Breitbart News founder Andrew Breitbart.

“Andrew built his life and his career on one mission: fight the bullies,” Shapiro said in a statement released to BuzzFeed News. “In my opinion, (Breitbart News Chairman) Steve Bannon is a bully, and has sold out Andrew’s mission in order to back another bully, Donald Trump; he has shaped the company into Trump’s personal Pravda, to the extent that he abandoned and undercut his own reporter, Michelle Fields, in order to protect Trump’s bully campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, who allegedly assaulted Michelle.”

Controversy over local high school student’s tweet

A local high school cheerleading captain was disciplined after she sent out a tweet about illegal immigrants.

She says it was a political statement, not a racial one. FOX25 spoke with the teen who says she was taking a page from Donald Trump. Caley Godino is a senior at Revere High School and she says part of their homework is to watch these presidential debates and her tweet was simply about a hot button issue in the headlines.



An investigation by German news site Correct!v has revealed that the Commission is cracking down on TTIP security following a series of leaks, purportedly by EU member states who had accessed information on the deal electronically.

EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström has said that no more reports on TTIP negotiations will be sent to Member States because of “important vulnerabilities in the last rounds of negotiations”.

Officials were told of this change in policy on July 24th at a meeting in Brussels in which the Commission explained that the documents had “been submitted to databases of [member states’] national parliaments” meaning that “hundreds of people have actually uncontrolled access”.