Cambridge Analytica Files for Bankruptcy

By Nick Baum

FRIDAY – 5/18/18

Cambridge Analytica, the company that worked with Trump’s campaign was accused of accessing private user’s data and personal interests on Facebook in order to advertise to them, bringing them into the center of a lengthy scandal, including a testimony by Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook to explain what happened to his company, and what could be done to prevent it.

Now, the data sharing firm has filed for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy at the US Bankruptcy Court of New York Southern Division, the same division that covers New York City. The processes of bankruptcy started in early May, with both Cambridge Analytica and their parent company, SCL Elections, starting bankruptcy procedures.

In the tech firm’s filings, they stated that their “assets” or valuable sources of money, number from $100,000 to $500,000, while their “liabilities”, or responsibilities that they will need to pay for, number from $1 million to $10 million, due to the past scandal as well as their former Director of Research, Christopher Wylie, had to testify against a Senate Committee on Wednesday.

Sources: CNN, BBC, USA Today

6 Killed in Suicide Bombing on Police HQ in Indonesia

By Nicholas Baum

MONDAY – 5/14/18

This morning, a family of four carried out a suicide bombing on the police headquarters of Indonesia’s second most populous city, Surabaya, killing six. In the attack, two motorcycles, each with one parent and a kid on the back, drove into the police headquarters building before detonating their bombs, still attached to their bodies. In addition to the six killed, four of them were the attackers and ten were wounded, six civilians and four officers.

The incident has been another attack in the string of suicide bombings in Indonesia last week. Three other attacks have been reported on various churches, killing a combined total of eight excluding the attackers’ deaths. The previous attacks have been thought to be done by a different family, as a husband and wife used their four kids to blow up different churches.

ISIS, through their Amaq News Agency, claimed responsibility for the three church attacks before, but hasn’t said anything about the recent police bombing. However, many have believed that the rise in suicide bombings correlates with the rise of Islamic extremism in the country, with many ISIS militants moving to different countries including Indonesia.

Sources: CNN, Fox News

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman Resigns

By Nick Baum

TUESDAY – 5/8/18

The attorney general for the state of New York Eric Schneiderman has resigned amidst allegations of sexual abuse, including four different women accusing him in the last several hours. As attorney general, Schneiderman was in charge of looking over the operations of every major department in the state, as well as serving as top lawyer for the state itself.

However, he claimed that while “he contests” these allegations, he believes that the controversy surrounding him has made his role ineffective, and resigning late Monday, May 7. Schneiderman had also spoken for the #MeToo movement, and had campaigned for women’s rights before.

The attorney general also tried to sue Harvey Weinstein, as well as applauding women for speaking up about their harassers and encouraged more to do the same. In an interview with the New Yorker, two of the women, Michelle Manning Barish and Tanya Selvaratnam, said they had both been in relationships with Schneiderman, complaining that he choked and slapped them around, forcing them to seek medical treatment.

Full statement here: “It’s been my great honor and privilege to serve as Attorney General for the people of the State of New York. In the last several hours, serious allegations, which I strongly contest, have been made against me,” Schneiderman said in a statement. “While these allegations are unrelated to my professional conduct or the operations of the office, they will effectively prevent me from leading the office’s work at this critical time. I therefore resign my office, effective at the close of business on May 8, 2018.”

Sources: CNN, The Washington Post, The New Yorker

Body Cam Footage Shows Raid of Las Vegas Shooter’s Suite

By Nick Baum

THURSDAY – 5/3/18

Newly released body cam footage worn on Las Vegas Police Department Officers depict up to three hours of response from the Las Vegas shooting. In the shooting, senior citizen Stephen Paddock opened fire with an automatic rifle on a concert from his hotel suite above.

The shooting killed 58 people, and 515 more were injured. The body cam footage showed different moments of the police’s reactions, including the drive up to the crime scene, shooting through the door to get into the suite, as well as searching the suite.

In the body cam footage, weapons can be seen scattered and hidden throughout the suite, as officers try to decipher what the shooter wanted and if he wasn’t the only one responsible. The footage is available online and viewer discretion is advised.

Sources: CNN, Independent, Associated Press

Sean Hannity Was a Client of Michael Cohen, Trump Lawyer

By Nick Baum

TUESDAY – 4/17/18

Sean Hannity, reporter and talk show host on Fox News, was announced as a client of Michael Cohen, Trump’s leading attorney, in a federal court on Monday. Michael Cohen’s home was recently raided by the FBI on suspicions that he carried illegal documents and records from Russia.

Three people were named at the federal court in lower Manhattan for being a former client of Michael Cohen. Hannity, GOP Fundraiser Elliott Broidy, and an unnamed third person. The names were announced in suspicion that they could’ve also been colluding with Russia.

So far, no direct evidence has been made of Russian collusion with the three names, but Michael Cohen is currently already under the investigation of a possible collusion and cover up with Russian authorities.

Sources: The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal

US Considers New Sanctions on Russia

By Nick Baum

MONDAY – 4/16/18

Yesterday, United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley announced that the United States will impose new economic sanctions on Russia for supporting Syrian President Bashar al Assad and his alleged use of chemical weapons.

The sanctions also follow a new line of pressure on Syria and Russia’s backing of the nation. Just days ago, three missiles were launched at science centers and factories that allegedly upheld Syria’s chemical warfare program. This was done in retaliation to the alleged use of chemical weapons against a group of rebel civilians in the city of Douma.

It isn’t the first time that Trump will impose new sanctions on Russia. In fact, The New York Times reports it is the third round of sanctions going against Russia in four weeks. The US aims for the new sanctions to add on to the pressure against Russia and their backing of Syria.

Sources: The New York Times, NPR, Washington Post

OPINION: What to Do in Syria

By Nick Baum

WEDNESDAY – 4/11/18

Two days ago in the small rebel held city of Douma, outside of government held Damascus, a gas attack allegedly formed. Killing at least 70 innocent citizens, it sparked outrage, both within Syrian borders and internationally as well. One of the most notable of which was with US President Donald Trump.

Trump said at a roundtable discussion after the gas attacks that a “major decision” will be coming in the next 24 hours to 48 hours. While it’s unclear whether Trump wanted to be mysterious and wanted to gather attention, or he just needed some time is unclear, but Trump is expected to take decisive military action on the Syrian government, possibly firing missiles, and I couldn’t agree more.

We need to remember that the Syrian government is a dictatorship. It is a government that is willing to gas attack and kill its own citizens and will deny it when asked. It is an evil government that limits all of its people freedoms, wealth, and lives, and they need to be punished. Sanctions at this point won’t work, and neither will negotiations, especially as they continue to deny killing their own citizens.

We need to bomb them, fire missiles, blow bases up, the cliche stuff will work. I’m not saying target cities with civilians, or any place with a civilian population, as that can bring into question America’s actions just like Syria’s. We need to bomb their bases, bomb their runways, bomb their supplies, anywhere that can hurt them without hurting innocent civilians.

If any military personnel is killed, then so be it. You jump the line from being a civilian to an evil person when you put on the uniform and help the evil dictatorship. It is truly ridiculous what the Syrian government is doing, and it needs to be stopped with real force, now.

Sources: The Daily Nick (past article), BBC, The New York Times, CNN