Category Archives: Policy

The Overwhelming Evidence that Trump is an Agent of Russia, Part III

Houston Wade, Executive Director

You will notice that since we published part II we have replaced the word “Circumstantial” with the more apt “Overwhelming” in the title of our most recent installment.  The Institute for Science and Policy has come to the conclusion that the president-elect of the United States of America, Donald J. Trump, and many of his associates, are without a doubt financially tied and indeed compromised and are acting in their capacity as tools of the Russian state. None of this is circumstantial any longer. President-elect Trump is lying about his investments in and from Russia and his relationship with Russian oligarchs; specifically Russian president Vladimir Putin.

Every day we have a new quote from Trump finding outrage in almost any company, citizen, civil rights leader, or celebrity, and yet only praise for Russia and its leader; a man who has used his position as the head of state to bilk his people of over $200 billion in wealth.  The very nature of this good nature is to be found with the deep financial ties Trump has with Russia, and the financial ties those surrounding Trump have with Russia. Should Trump start poking and prodding the Russian Bear he will find himself financially destitute, and to Trump wealth is all that matters.

Trump’s Russian connections have been reported since his first publicized trip to the Soviet Union in 1987 where he claimed after his return from Moscow that, “I like the people, and the people like me.”. Trump mentioned in his book The Art of the Deal how he sought to build luxury towers in Moscow, “I was impressed with the ambition of the Soviet officials to make a deal.”  By 1997 Trump was receiving as a gift from the Russian government a $40 million bronze statue of Christopher Columbus to put in his Riverside South development… Only, by this time, Trump no longer had control of Riverside South as he had previously sold the development to a Hong Kong outfit in 1994. The Statue ended up in Puerto Rico where it stands 6ft taller than the Statue of Liberty.

By 2008 Trump himself was saying that he was investing in real estate development in Russia. Trump also had deals with Drinks Americas to ship cases of Trump Vodka to the Russian markets beginning in the January 2008.

Douche booze Trump
Trump seen at the launch of his brand of vodka. Trump, who doesn’t drink, signed a deal to ship 50,000 cases of the spirit to Russia beginning January of 2008. The brand ultimately failed due to the fact that bottle was too expensive to manufacture.

Trump’s Russia connections are not limited to deals inside Russia, but largely with individuals connected to the Russian Mafia (also known as the “Eurasian Mafia” since many mafioso are from former soviet block states other than Russia itself), and with individuals directly connected to the Russian government and the apparatus that feeds Putin’s financial empire.

In the early 2000s Bayrock Group partnered with Trump to build his Trump SOHO tower in New York City, and to build the Trump international Hotel and Tower in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. During the period of the SOHO development Bayrock made its headquarters at Trump Tower on the 51st floor. Bayrock was founded by Kazakh billionaire and mafioso Tevfik Arif who was charged with smuggling underage girls from Russia and Ukraine for the purposes of prostitution. Number two at Bayrock was Russian mobster Felix Sater, who is was convicted of a mafia-related stock scheme in 1998 which generated $40 million (Sater avoided prison by working on issues of national security in Asia for the CIA), and in 1991 for stabbing a commodities broker in the neck and face with the broken stem of a margarita glass while at the El Rio Grande restaurant in Midtown Manhatten (the victim suffered a broken jaw and permanent nerve damage).  Sater spent a year in prison for the assault. Sater was also named as an “unindited co-conspirator” in a federal securities fraud case in 2000.

Russian mafia
Trump, Arif, and Sater who all work together, made millions of dollars together, and who do not know each other are seen here at the grand opening of Trump SOHO in 2007.

Felix Sater was at one time working for Donald Trump and even sported business cards from Trump which read “Senior Advisor to Donald Trump” and had office space in the Trump headquarters. Later, while committing perjury under oath, Trump stated that he had no recollection of Sater despite sharing a stage at the 2007 SOHO grand opening. Sater donated over $5,000 to the Trump campaign in 2016. Sater also testified under oath that he would pitch projects “one on one” with Trump and has documentation to him from Trump establishing their business and personal relationship. Trump is definitely guilty of the crime of perjury.

Trump commits perjury.
Trump “doesn’t know” Felix.

In 2006 Sater took Ivanka and Donald Jr. on a tour of Moscow as a favor to their father.

One of the other investors in Trump’s SOHO project was billionaire Georgian immigrant Tamir Sapir who lived in a $5 million condo in Trump Tower.  Sapir, whose net worth was pegged at over $2 billion in 2006, claimed that his company only had $4,000 by 2009.  Sapir’s lawyers claimed that Sapir was so out of it mentally for over a decade that all he could do was sign his name.  This means that Sapir was supposedly not mentally functional when he signed the deal with Trump in 2005 for the SOHO tower.  The executive vice president of Sapir’s company, Fred Contini, was convicted of racketeering and conspiracy with the Gambino crime family.

Sapir was who introduced Trump to Bayrock, and was named in a lawsuit along with Trump, Ivanka, Donald Jr., Eric, and Tevfik Arif by the customers of the SOHO tower who were mislead when given information on the development. Sapir passed away in 2014.

One of the troubling things to come out of the Bayrock/Trump partnership is how the money was distributed to Trump.  Bayrock initially directly invested in the project, but then later convinced the Icelandic bank, the FL Group, to do a weird swap and later changed the status of their investment post-fact into a “loan”.  This allowed Bayrock and FL Group to avoid $20 million in taxes on their initial investment and avoid $80 million in future taxes on profits from the development.  Where the money for this investment-turned-loan originated from is even more sketchy.

The FL Group had its own Russian problems.  Those familiar with the Great Recession will recall that Iceland had managed to privatize it’s state-owned banks and then promptly “went nuts.”  These banks had large Russian ownership and were largely a mechanism to launder ill-gotten Russian money into the open market. Russian banks right up to the economic collapse in 2008 had started making obscene loans to Russian oligarchs. Alex Shnaider, Trump’s business partner in Toronto for example, received a $50+ million loan from FL Group for a boat (more on Shnaider below).

Dirty money being laundered out of Kazakhstan has been finding its way into Trump’s developments. Particularly the ones backed by Bayrock. One of the initial investors in Trump SOHO also included the Eurasia Group headed by Alexander Machkevich. The Eurasia Group obtained their capital from three Kazakh/Uzbek oligarchs known as “The Trio”: Machkevich, Patokh Chodiev, and Alijan Ibragimov who are all involved in organized crime.  Shortly after the fall of communism The Trio formed a partnership known as the Chodiev Group with Russian mob boss Michael Cherney.

In 2006 a young man by the name of Sergey Millian (sometimes written “Sergei”) came to head the Russian American Chamber of Commerce. In an interview done in April of 2016 Mr. Millian claims to have met Trump and invited him via mutual acquaintances at the 2007 “Millionaire Fair” in Russia.  In 2007 the fair was held at the Crocus Expo owned by Aras Agalarov who you might remember from Part I in this series as being Trump’s introduction to Vladimir Putin during the Miss Universe Pageant in 2013.  Trump invited Millian to the Gulf Stream horse races in Miami and later introduced Millian to his lawyer Michael “I have never been to Russia” Cohen. It was Cohen who granted Millian the exclusive rights to market Trump Organization properties in Russia. In Millian’s own words, his business with the Trump organization was to facilitate tens of millions dollars in condo purchases of Trump real estate from Russian buyers.

Russia owns US president elect trump
Sergei Millian with Donald Trump and Jorge Perez at the Gulf Stream horse races. Trump spokeswoman, Hope Hicks, said that Trump had “met and spoke” with Millian only “on one occasion almost a decade ago at a hotel opening.” Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen only follows 100 or so people on Twitter. Millian is one of them.

Millian was asked in the same interview mentioned above when he last had business with Trump or his associates Millian responded, “Last time it was a few days ago,” (translated from Russian).  This means Trump was dealing with Russian business interests during his campaign for president as admitted by the representative for Russian business interests in America! Millian suggested that Trump would make an excellent president as he would remove sanctions and agree on Russia’s involvement in both Syria and Ukraine.  Months later Trump did exactly this four days after Christopher Steele reported that Trump was about to recognize Putin’s annexation of Crimea.

Millian later told ABC News that Trump benefited from hundreds of millions of dollars from Russian interests, while Trump would continue to make the claim that he has no investments in Russia.  Investments in Russia mean little when huge sums are flowing out of Russia and into Trump’s accounts.

Here is the thing about the Russian American Chamber of Commerce: it is a spy network. Period. The Financial Times reports that the benefactors to the RACC are front companies and have phones that either don’t work or are never answered.  When trying to follow up on physical address the Financial Times discovered that they simply didn’t exist.  Konstantin Borovoi, a former Russian member of parliament and who was the first president of Russia’s commodities exchange, stated that the original Russian chamber of commerce during the Soviet era was nothing more than a spy network to compromise Americans. “These institutions have been revived and developed. The chamber of commerce institutions are the visible part of the agent network… Russia has spent huge amounts of money on this.”

The FBI even brought in 50 American businessmen who went on a 2011 trip to Moscow organized by Millian via the RACC and questioned whether Russian agents tried to recruit them.

Which brings us to Alex Shnaider, the Russo-Canadian billionaire and Trump’s partner in Toronto on the now bankrupt Trump Tower there. Shnaider has close ties with Putin and Trump. Shnaider owes much of his wealth to that of his father in-law, Russo-Canadian, Boris J. Birshtein. Birshtein’s organization, Seabeco, is found in tax havens all over the world and has its finger in everything you could imagine. According to the FBI Birshtein was tied into the Russian mob via Sergei Mikhaylov the head of the Solntsevskaya Bratva; the largest branch of the Russian mafia. Forbes named Solntsevkaya Bratva the highest grossing organized crime outfit in the world. A 1996 FBI report asserts that Birshtein held a meeting in his Tel Aviv offices with Mikhaylov, Ukrainian crime boss Semion Mogilevich, and others to decide how to split up the Ukraine.

After these meetings Birshtein and his associates managed to take control of most of Ukraine’s markets and government officials including President Leonid Kuchma utilizing some $5 million in payoffs. In the early 1990s Birshtein and Mikhaylov controlled a Belgian company called MAB International; investigators found millions of dollars in transfers between Mikhaylov, Birshtein, and Alexander Volkov, Seabeco’s head in Ukraine.

in 1993 Yeltsin accused Birshtein of stealing seven million tons of oil and laundering the proceeds. It was during this time that two of Kazakhstans “Trio” were involved with Seabeco and actually met while working for Birshtein.

President with Russian mob boss
Donald Trump with Alex Schnaider at the Toronto Trump Tower groundbreaking.

Trump’s business partner Alex Shnaider started working for Birshtein in Seabeco’s offices in Zurich in 1991 and became the head of “Seabeco Metals AG” in 1993-94.  Schnaider left Seabeco for Antwerp to run a trading company in January 1994… The same month, year, and location that Birshtein and Mikhaylov happen to have founded MAB International. Shnaider is in deep with Russian mafia connections. He managed the trading for steel mills in Ukraine and was often visiting his favorite one, the Zaporizhstal steel mill. It was here he met Eduard Shifrin and together they formed Midland Resource Holdings Ltd and bought Zaporizhstal for a paltry $70 million and shortly afterward turned down a $1.2 billion deal for its sale.  Midland generates $4 billion annually. Schnaider also owns Talon International Development, which was the contractor who built the now bankrupt Toronto Trump Tower.

Trump has also received considerable investments and loans from the Blackstone Group; how much? That is hard to establish unless Trump releases his tax records. Trump named Blackstone founder Steve Schwarzman to chair the Strategic and Policy Forum.  Schwarzman was on the advisory board for the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) established by Russian prime minister Dmitri Medvedev in 2011 to spur foreign investment into companies that were not related to the Russian government.  Blackstone is under scrutiny for loaning $1.75 billion Sibur, a company that is owned and run by Vladimir Putin’s daughter and her husband, via the RDIF.  We should all take note that the business titan who advises Trump weekly is making illegal billion dollar deals with the Russian president’s family.

Trump’s choice of Rex Tillerson, the CEO of oil goliath Exxon, for Secretary of State has raised many an eyebrow. As we all know by now, Tillerson was awarded the “Order of Friendship” medal by Vladimir Putin in 2013.  This was after Exxon inked a deal with Rosneft, the Russian state oil company, to utilize its proprietary oil recovery methods to drill for oil on millions of acres of the Russian countryside and in Russia’s Arctic seas. This deal would have put over $1.8 trillion of oil into the global marketplace.  Since sanctions have taken place, both Exxon and Russia have not been able to realize any gains from this deal.

A traitor in our midst
Potential Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with Russian kleptocrat and president Vladimir Putin. Both men stand to make a fortune should the United States lift economic sanctions.

Tillerson is literally a friend of Putin’s. He has the medal to prove it. The choice of Tillerson for Secretary of State when he personally has hundreds of millions of dollars on the line for the removal of sanctions is curious even to the least cynical observer.  As we detailed in Part I, Steele alleges that Trump-aid Carter Page was promised as much as 19% ownership in Rosneft to him, Trump, and their associates should they manage to remove the economic sanctions in place since the Russian invasion of Ukraine.  Everyone in the Trump team seems to benefit if the United States repeals economic sanctions against Russia.

We have to now come back to Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort, who we discussed in Part I as the former political consultant for the disgraced former Ukrainian president, and Putin stooge, Viktor Yanukovych.  This is not how Manafort got his start in with former Soviet bloc nations, though. As a lobbyist Manafort’s biggest client was pro-Russian Ukrainian billionaire Dmytro Firtash. Firtash has a strong business relationship with Ukrainian mobster Semion Mogilevich (mentioned above as an associate of Boris Birshtein). In 2008 Manafort teamed up with former Trump Organization manager to purchase New York’s famed Drake Hotel for $850 million. Firtash provided $112 million of the seed.

Dmytro Firtash, right, has been accused of laundering money through deals that benefited an aide to Viktor Yanukovych, left.

The purpose of the hotel buy was not to make a wise investment. Instead, it was to launder skimmed proceeds Firtash had accrued from Ukraine’s natural gas negotiations with Russia via his silent partner Mogilevich. Ultimately Firtash pulled out of the hotel deal for reasons unknown. Firtash currently faces extradition from Austria to the USA and Spain for bribery and money laundering in a vast network that spreads though the Americas, the UK and Europe. Austria is holding him on an unheard of €125 million bail!

Trump Tower has been home to many a scoundrel, among them tax-dodgers, bribers, arms dealers, convicted cocaine traffickers, and corrupt former FIFA officials. Standing tall above these gems was Russian mobster Anatoly Golubchik who in 2014 was convicted of running an illegal gambling operation out of Trump Tower. Even more shocking was Tower resident Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov, Golubchik’s partner, who was listed in 2008 on Forbes World’s Ten Most Wanted Criminals, and who the FBI says is tied to Mogilevich’s crime organization. Tokhtakhounov, in the midst of this illegal gambling operation in Trump Tower, travelled to Moscow to attend Trump’s 2013 Miss Universe contest as a special VIP!

At one point, a man by the name of David Bogatin owned five separate condos in Trump Tower that Donald Trump had reportedly sold to him personally. Who is David Bogatin? He served in the Soviet Army in a North Vietnamese anti-aircraft unit, helping to shoot down American pilots like, say, Senator John McCain. He is also the brother of Jacob Bogatin who in 1993, along with Simeon Mogilevich, was indited by the US government on 45 counts for $150 million in stock fraud. Jacob has a string of mob-related convictions including financial fraud and tax evasion. It is believed that much of his ill gotten gains were laundered through Trump Tower condos via his brother.

The evidence is overwhelming that president-elect Donald Trump has made hundreds of millions, if not billions, of dollars from Russian mobsters.  He is most certainly compromised financially and that alone is grounds for treason.  It is the opinion of the Institute for Science and Policy that Donald J. Trump not become president of the United States. This will most definitely end poorly, and dangerously for all Americans.

The Circumstantial Evidence that Trump is an Agent for Russia, Part II

Houston Wade, Executive Director

It has been two days since we published our research on Trump’s relationship with the Kremlin as it relates to the privately-compiled intelligence dossier leaked by Buzzfeed.  Our conclusion is that regardless of the validity of the dossier, more than enough evidence exists that Trump has been attempting to hide the extent of the control Putin and Russia have over him and his actions.  Since the release of the dossier, more investigators and journalists have produced even more reason to be concerned that Trump is an agent of a foreign state.

It has been revealed that not only has Christopher Steele, the former MI6 agent hired to collect the info contained within the leaked dossier, given the FBI and other federal agencies his sources, but that many of these sources have checked out.  The validity of these sources is why the information was included in intelligence briefings given to both President Obama and President-elect Trump.  Many in the intelligence community are stepping forward and vouching for the credibility of Steele as well.

It has also come to our attention that Trump’s nominee to become National Security Adviser, Michael Flynn, has been in contact with Russian authorities since the Obama administration announced stricter sanctions on Russia in the aftermath of Russian hacking during the election cycle.  This is a clear violation of the Logan Act which prohibits private citizens from contacting foreign governments in order to resolve “disputes” with the United States.

Other information on Trump and his sexual proclivities in Russia has also come to light as a recording of an interview with columnist A.J. Benza in 2001 about Trump’s sexual exploits with Russian women saying, “I was just in Russia, the girls have no morals, you gotta get out there.” Recordings of Trump’s sexual appetite and abuse are already widely known, but now we know that he has a history of such behavior in Russia itself.

The Atlantic this week published a piece detailing how Russian Kompromat works; and specifically the brand used by Putin himself to blackmail individuals in Russia while he was the head of the FSB under Yeltsin.  The technique is a carbon copy of the one describe in the dossier that supposedly took place at the Moscow Ritz-Carlton while Trump was attending the Miss Universe Pageant in 2013.

The dossier made mention that information was being traded back and forth between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin.  Much of this is alleged to be through personal contact, but as it was asserted this past summer, it is also possible that there is a direct data link between the Trump’s company and Russian-owned Alfa Group.   Much of this reporting was written off as “not likely”.  The release of the dossier specifically cites the Alfa Group as a financial consortium which has had contact with Trump’s inner circle and also a group that his been largely left alone by Putin because they have kompromat on the Russian President.

The Senate Intelligence Committee has just announced that it is launching an investigation into the connection between Trump and Russia.  Never before in our nation’s 240 year existence has the head of state of this great nation been accused of being an agent for a foreign power.  This is truly an unprecedented moment and does not bode well for the future of the future of our republic regardless of the outcome.

The Circumstantial Evidence that Trump is an Agent for Russia

Houston Wade, Executive Director

This week gave rise to quite the leak of information which has been floating among the US Intelligence community and the halls of power for months.  The publishing of an unconfirmed dossier detailing how Russia, and specifically Vladimir Putin, is controlling Donald Trump via compromising behavior/information was published by Buzzfeed in its entirety.  While the information contained in the dossier has yet to be verified by anyone, intelligence and news agencies alike, the US intelligence community do say that the source of the dossier, a former British MI6 agent Christopher Steele (who was hired by a joint team of Democratic and Republican leadership against the election of Trump this past Summer), is a reliable and vetted source. Steele has since gone underground fearing for his safety.

The goal of this paper is to connect the dots of the timeline contained within the bombshell dossier, and the very real timeline of Trump’s, and his surrogates’, movements during the period in question.  If you have not read the dossier, let me remind you that much of the information is quite graphic and sexual in nature.

The most prominent item in the dossier is what Trump is alleged to have done while staying in the presidential suite at the Moscow Ritz-Carlton in 2013:

Godlen showers bring may day flowers
Trump is alleged to have paid prostitutes to urinate on the bed of the presidential suite at the Moscow Ritz-Carlton because his perceived enemies, Barack and Michelle Obama, had slept in the bed.

The timeline for when this may have happened can easily be established. Trump was indeed in Moscow in 2013 for the Miss Universe Pageant being held in a suburb of Moscow at Crocus City Hall.  Trump had the presidential suite of Moscow Ritz-Carlton during his time at the pageant. We must note that Crocus City hall is privately-owned by Russian oligarch Aras Agalarov.  It has been charged by several news agencies (NBC and The Washington Post among others) that Agalarov was the liaison between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin introducing the two.  Agalarov is also mentioned in the dossier as a witness of Trump’s participation at orgies while seeking Russian financial deals on a trip to Saint Petersburg.  As the NBC article linked to above notes, Trump did a favor for Agalarov by letting Agalarov’s son Emin, a burgeoning pop star, film a music video for the pageant and even made a cameo at the end of the video.

Trump and oligarch connection
Donald Trump made a cameo in a music video by Emin, the son of Russian Oligarch Aras Agalarov who owns the venue where the 2013 Miss Universe pageant was held. This scene is in the Alta Room of the Moscow Ritz-Carlton

The interesting tidbit is that Trump allowed Emin to the film the pageant music video at the Ritz Carlton where he was staying.

While both NBC and The Washington Post reported that the meeting between Trump and Putin did not happen during the pageant event due to scheduling conflicts, but that Trump received $14 million for hosting the pageant at Crocus City hall, and Agalarov announced that Trump signed a deal to build a Trump Tower in the heart of Moscow.  This is in direct conflict with what Trump told reporters at his news conference held this week. Trump has also stated in the past that he knows Putin and is friends with him.

Trump’s own son Donald Trump Jr. told ETN in 2008 that the Trump’s were “bullish” on Russian real estate and that, “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets; say in Dubai, and certainly with our project in SoHo and anywhere in New York. We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia. There’s indeed a lot of money coming for new-builds and resale reflecting a trend in the Russian economy and, of course, the weak dollar versus the ruble.” Trump’s son and Vice President of his company named specific projects where Russian investment had occurred; this contradicts everything the Trump administration has been maintaining.

Trump’s reluctance to say disparaging things about Russia or Putin is very telling. As far as Trump criticism is concerned there is little he won’t give his unfiltered thoughts on… except Putin and Russia.

The dossier states that Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen is in covert relationship with Russia and met with officials in Prague in the summer of 2016.  In the dossier it is said that Cohen’s wife is Russian and that her father is a Russian developer, but Cohen states that his wife is in fact Ukrainian. It has also been verified by several sources that Cohen was not outside of the USA during the period in question (the end of August/beginning of September of 2016) Also, according to CNN that it was a different ‘Michael Cohen‘ with the same birth year, but a passport from another nation, who visited Prague to supposedly meet with Russian officials on behalf of the Trump campaign mentioned in the dossier.  The search for who this other ‘Michael Cohen’ could be continues.

What we do know is that former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort had heavy political and financial ties to the Kremlin.  Manafort ran the political operations of former Ukrainian president and Russian stooge Viktor Yanukovych.  Manafort was let go by the Trump campaign in August after his Russian financial connections began to be exposed.  As of November Manafort’s financial windfalls were being investigated by the FBI.  The dossier suggests that Cohen became the defacto liaison between the Trump campaign and Russia after Manafort’s dismissal.

Another accusation in the dossier is that Carter Page, one of Trump’s foreign policy advisers, was a liaison between the Trump campaign and Russian interests.  Specifically the dossier names Page as a contact with Igor Sechin, the President of Putin-owned Rosneft, Russia’s state oil company.  The claims in the dossier coincide with news of an investigation of Page by the FBI in September of 2016, and with a commencement speech Carter gave at the New Economic School in Moscow back in July.  The investigation into Page by the FBI is because Page is thought to be in violation of the terms of the US economic sanctions against Russia regarding Russia’s invasion of Eastern Ukraine and the annexation of the Crimean Peninsula.  Page is a former US Naval officer and Annapolis alumni.  While Page maintains that his energy investment company Global Energy Capital is a major player in the Russian energy market, no one in the ex-pat community involved with the Russian energy market have ever heard of him.  His business has been booming in Russia as a result of his new connections to the Trump campaign. One prediction of the dossier is that Trump, Page, and other associates will be offered as much as 19% of private control of Rosneft should sanctions be lifted (which is thought to be at least $20 billion in value).  It is stated that as of October 17th Sechin was very confident that Trump would win the election.

Some of the accusations made within the leaked dossier do coincide with the timelines of Trump and his surrogates; while others, like Cohen, do not seem to be as accurate.  What we do know is that Trump refuses to say anything negative about Russia or Putin, and instead offers up only praise of Putin when given the opportunity.  It is also established that Trump at one time secured significant investments from Russian oligarchs and has had financial dealings within Russia.  The Institute for Science and Policy takes the position that President-elect Donald Trump is indeed compromised and is under the coercion of the Russian state regardless of the validity contained within the dossier leaked by Buzzfeed.

What will America look like a year into a Trump Presidency?

Houston Wade,  Executive Director

While many are calling for the public to “give the Trump administration a chance” the Institute for Science and Policy has been working hard to foresee what will be the result of his presidency.  Our outlook is very pessimistic for all the reasons which are outlined below.

As president-elect Trump has already begun to build his administration around the worst possible fears of his opponents.  He is appointing white nationalists to key positions in his administration, he is seeking to register religious minorities, and roll back the finally realized rights and protections so many of our citizens have earned and deserve.

We expect:

  • A failed economy rife with fraud and the loss of publicly owned infrastructure
  • Global war and the collapse of traditional allegiances
  • Increased white nationalism, hate crimes, and paramilitary involvement in domestic matters
  • Significant roll backs of civil rights and liberties
  • Persecution of the free press and limited access to information
  • Trump family enrichment through governmental power and influence
  • Environmental collapse in the Mountain West
  • A drift toward authoritarianism and fascism
  • The chances of military coup inside the United States has never been greater

Jobs, Graft, Nepotism, Kleptocracy, and the Economy

What is readily apparent and troubling is the hurried pace at which Donald Trump is seeking to enrich himself via the power of the presidency. Trump is hardly the first wealthy man to hold the most powerful office in the land, but he is by far the wealthiest of them all, and the first to refuse to put his vast holdings into a blind trust.  Trump is still the chair of his privately held conglomerate.  His children will be running the day-to-day business operations, but at the same time he seeks to give his children top secret clearance and have them hold key positions in his administration as advisers.

Kleptocracy hard at work
The Trump Family opens its newest hotel in Washington DC, a former post office leased from the US government. Trump is about to become his own landlord.

It has already been reported that diplomats, dignitaries, and heads of state will be flocking to the Trump Hotel just blocks from the White House to pay $20,000 a night to stay in the most premium rooms.  One Asian diplomat stated it as such, “Why wouldn’t I stay at his hotel blocks from the White House, so I can tell the new president, ‘I love your new hotel!’ Isn’t it rude to come to his city and say, ‘I am staying at your competitor?’ ” Reports are already coming out that he is using his new position to enrich himself via graft from other heads of state.

This is the key: enrich.  Trump cares about money.  Money will be first and foremost in a Trump administration.  Trump admires Russian President Vladimir Putin. He admires his authoritarian rule, he admires his business acumen.  What is Putin’s business acumen, you ask? Amassing some $200 billion in wealth as the head of state.  In America presidents are expected to forego their dreams of wealth and riches until after they have served their country.  Donald Trump will not do this.  The country will serve Donald Trump.

Trump will mire us financially. His tax policy will suck hundreds of billions out of the treasury every year as he slashes corporate taxes, and invites a loophole for the highest paid executives to become “consultants” and pay 15% tax on their wealth rather than 35% on their salaries.  The wall he wants to build is estimated to cost $25 billion, but we think that is under estimating the costs by about $200 billion. Constructing a light rail line in Seattle costs $10 billion.  The largest concrete project in human history is going to be a logistical nightmare as it eminent domains land, fights legal battles, claws for raw material, experiences delays, costs overruns, shoddy workmanship, protests, etc… Trump’s plan for deporting immigrants would cost up to $600 billion just to enforce and deport, and another $1.5 trillion in economic loss to our economy!

His base wants jobs. They voted for Trump believing that jobs will come to them.  They won’t.  The jobs these people had years and years ago, are not coming back. In 1973 the United States produced 137 million metric tons of steel and employed 605,000 people (226.4 tons per worker).  In 2013 steel production was down to 87 million tons and 147,000 employees (591.8 tons per employee).  It is thought that production has been growing since 2013 due to construction and manufacturing being on the rise, but even if we had the peak steel production of 1973 replicated today, there would still be 373,503 fewer workers producing said steel.  Only inefficiency will bring back those jobs.

In coal country the prospects are even more grim.  West Virginia overwhelmingly has put their faith into Donald Trump to bring back coal jobs.  Overall yearly coal production in West Virginia is down about 60 million tons per year since the peak of 1997, yet the number of workers mining coal is higher than ever!  In 1997 20,542 people worked in the coal industry in West Virginia and mined 181 million tons. By 2013 that total was 52,213 people mining 120 million tons. Why? It became harder to get permits to blow the tops off of mountains and open pit coal mines. Open pits require a fraction of the work force to obtain a higher yield, it is also incredibly destructive to the environment.  Today, coal is harder to mine, more labor intensive, and employs more people now than it has for 30 years and is comparable to coal employment over peaks of the past century.

So, why is West Virginia hurting? For the same reason it has always been hurting: too many people, not enough industry.  West Virginia has no sea ports, no interesting landmarks or tourist stops, not enough flat ground, and a poorly educated population.  No corporations of worth want to be there, only corporations who have to be there. The majority of its employed population work in hospitals and pharmacies, and for Walmart or Krogers. It is almost entirely an economy built upon a dying population.  Donald Trump is not going to make West Virginia more appealing, he is not going to get more people to work in coal.  If West Virginia was worth the investment, Trump would have invested in it by now.

Coal production is just not efficient in West Virginia and will vanish entirely in the near future.  Wyoming produces 255 million more tons of coal than WV and does so with only 6,646 employees. Even Wyoming coal is feeling the pinch as natural gas becomes a much cheaper, cleaner-burning alternative for traditional coal fire power plants. How would Trump bring coal jobs back? He would have to make natural gas expensive again, which would kill the natural gas market and put many of the 170,000 jobs tied to gas exploration and production at risk.  Trump’s only option at this point is to capitulate and make one of these industries really angry, or artificially boost the coal market and create an unsustainable bubble.

With regards to Wall Street and big banks, Trump wants to see regulations be purged from the markets. History has shown that when Republicans control all three branches of government the economy collapses: 1929, 2008… 2017? Since 1981 there have been four recessions, all of which happened during a Republican administration. We are about to see a complete reversal in policy towards the markets and expect to see a housing bubble part II.

When markets get deregulated, and banks are allowed to invest savings into the markets at will one should expect fantastic, quick gains; but this is inevitably unsustainable.  As long as traders are allowed to insure their investments with credit default swaps, there will be artificial inflation of securities and commodities, as many will no doubt bet against the market and stand to make fortunes.  Trump plays with other people’s money and seldom has stake in the game.  He has defaulted on billions of dollars in loans since the 1970s and now receives most of his investment from overseas. An undisclosed amount of loans possibly totaling $1 billion from the Bank of China, his debts also include over $350 million from Deutsche bank, and an unsettling amount of money from Russian oligarchs tied to Vladimir Putin’s inner circle for overseas Trump projects, which…

International Relations

…Brings us back to Vladimir Putin and Trump’s ties to him. While Trump denies any connection with Putin, the money and personal trail is deep.  Trump’s daughter Ivanka is good friends with Putin’s girlfriend, Wendi Deng, and went on vacation with her to Croatia this past summer (if this alone is not enough to warrant a rejection for security clearance, we don’t know what is). Putin’s M.O. for the past decade has been to install his surrogates and allies as the heads of states in the former Soviet Bloc via invasion or questionable elections. This tactic has become more global than regional as of late with the election of Duterte in the Philippines and, some would say, Trump.

Ivanka Trump on Vacation with Vladimir Putin's girlfriend Wendi Deng
Ivanka Trump on Vacation with Vladimir Putin’s girlfriend Wendi Deng

During the campaign, Donald Trump made some very troubling comments about NATO, the allegiance that has kept the Russian Bear at bay for almost 70 years. The prime directive is that the attack of any one NATO member is an attack on all.  While being a Cold War necessity, this doctrine is very recently relevant as Russia has begun overthrowing its former Soviet subjects making many former Iron Curtain nations nervous enough to jump at the opportunity of NATO membership.  Just this week Estonia has a new Prime Minister in Juri Ratas who has deep ties to Vladimir Putin.  Russia has been amassing military personnel and armament along the border with Estonia since last year. Lithuania is so fearful of Russian invasion that they have been running nation-wide drills with its citizenry and preparing its troops for an imminent war.

We expect that during Trump’s term that Russia will invade one, or all, of the Baltic states and challenge NATO’s allegiances and prime directive.  We expect Russia to assume that the Trump administration will look the other way al la Chamberlain with regards to the Nazi Germany’s invasion of Poland.  This will plunge Europe into war without its largest, most important ally, the USA. In other words World War III.

In Asia Trump will ignore allegiances with traditional partners like Japan, South Korea, The Philippines, and Taiwan; and will let die recent ties with Vietnam.  Trump has said that he wants these nations to have more of a role in their security and for the US to pull out. This plays directly into the hands of Chinese and Russian interests.

Japanese President Shinzo Abe is a hawk unlike any leader since the end of WWII.  China will begin to exert more dominance in East Asia and make its neighbors nervous of invasion of their borders and infiltration of their governments. This action will lead to military buildups by previously weakly armed governments.  North Korea will go largely ignored and will continue development of weapons systems and will become a belligerent threat to its immediate neighbors.  The Korean Peninsula has never been closer to all out war since the cease fire.  Result? World War III. Only worse than the European side as allegiances will have become much more muddled and the US will not have a strong policy for its position.

The Middle East, while at the moment is the most pressing concern, will largely fall by the wayside as Trump let’s Putin control policy and action in Syria and Turkey. As the rest of the planet falls into posturing and war, our Middle East policy will largely be forgotten anywhere that does not sell oil.  We expect to see internal strife similar or worse than the Arab Spring arise in multiple nations as soon as the US government becomes preoccupied with skirmishes across the globe.

Our outlook with regards to international relations is not good.  We have never been closer to nuclear annihilation than we are about to become in the period since the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Law and Order

On Meanwhile on the domestic front, new Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions will see law and order unravel as the Justice Department’s attention does a 180 degree turn.  Sessions’ ties to white nationalists, and his overt racism, cost him a federal judgeship.  Expect to see any federal law enforcement operations following white nationalist groups like the KKK, Neo Nazis, Aryan Brotherhood, Odinists, the Alt Right, paramilitary militia organizations, and Sovereign Citizens to all but vanish.  White Nationalist groups will use this period as an opportunity to become the defacto “Brown Shirts” of the Trump administration as they see Trump’s ascendancy a sign that their race war is near.  Hate crimes against ethnic and religious minorities, immigrants, and LGBTQ peoples will continue to increase with impunity.

The Justice Department will double down on the War on Drugs.  Expect the DEA to return focus on state-legal pot operations.  Very few users and purveyors of legal marijuana voted for Trump; this will be an opportunity to clear out the opposition.  It will also be a financial boon for the private prison industry and wreak havoc on the the economies of West Coast.

The Environment

The EPA will become toothless.  Should Myron Ebell take over as head of the Environmental Protection Agency he will gut it.  He will make life for the bureaucrats and scientists who have worked at the EPA for decades so miserable that many will quit or retire.  He will do one of two things: let the agency operate understaffed, or fill any openings with climate denial underlings who will keep the agency inept for generations.  This means that violators of the Clean Water Act and the Clean Air Act will likely go unpunished.  Pipeline construction out of the Bakken oil fields will crisscross the continent and any spills or explosions will receive little to no attention from the federal agency.  Expect air and water quality to continue to denigrate during the Trump administration as more lands are opened to fraking and energy exploration.

Myron Ebell is bad at his job and not very smart..
Myron Ebell was satirically wanted by environmentalists at the Paris Climate Summit, now he is in charge of the agency which regulates our environment.

For years Republicans in Congress have been trying to unload federal lands. Now that Republicans control all three branches of government, there is a higher than likely chance there will be a push for such a liquidation.  Federal lands generate trillions of dollars to the US economy and provide recreation for millions as well as much of our potable water.  The ultimate goal is to unload the lands onto the individual states who are not financially equipped to maintain such large tracts. The states will subsequently be forced to sell to the highest bidder; generally mining, ranching, and logging operations.  Once these lands are out of the control of the state and federal governments it will be a free-for-all.  Combine this with the future impotence of the EPA and we will see environmental degradation the likes of which the North American continent has never seen.

Civil Rights

With Trump’s appointee(s) to the Supreme Court the future of Roe v Wade and Marriage Equality are certainly doomed.  Trump may say he has the backs of the LGBTQ community, but his selection of Mike Pence as his Vice President is proof that this is not the case.  Lip service to the LGBTQ community will not matter to a man like Pence who believes in gay conversion therapy and the Orwellian named “religious freedom” legislation which allows the open discrimination of Americans by businesses based on religious grounds. We are in uncharted territory with never having had an Evangelical with as much power as Pence has.

Further degradation of voting rights will occur as individual states make it harder and harder for minorities to vote. This will lead to more consolidation of power for Republican legislatures and Congress.  States like Alabama recently required identification to vote and then closed 31 of its 67 DMVs to make it nearly impossible for millions of its citizens to obtain a valid ID. There is a direct connection that voter disenfranchisement won Trump the presidency and Republicans Congress in 2016.

Donald Trump does not like native tribes. He blames Indian casinos for the collapse of his gambling interests in Atlantic City.  He will seek revenge on them especially if tribes do not let him build his wall along the Mexico border, or readily construct pipelines through the nation’s heartland.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbjUQf8G2X4

Infrastructure

National infrastructure may finally get the upgrades and maintenance it so desperately needs but it will come at a cost: ownership of almost all vital infrastructure.  Trump’s stated plan for upgrading the nation’s vast networks of roads, ports, bridges, and sanitation networks involves using private capital rather than public bonds and taxes.

Today when improvements are made, or new projects financed, the government sells low interest bonds to investors and pays back the loan via tax dollars.  Trump wants to have private contractors use higher interest bank loans to rebuild infrastructure and in return the federal government will give the newly renovated infrastructure to the private company to run and profit from.  This would turn hundreds of thousands of miles of roads into toll roads. Imagine paying a dollar a mile to cross the United States by highway.  This will collapse the economy alone.

Couple this with the ineptitude with which private industry runs public infrastructure and we will have a double whammy of projects which cost several times more than usual, and are rife with violations of federal law, questionable financials, and poor management.  Who will ultimately own all this infrastructure should private industry default on the loans? Banks, of course!  If you thought the housing bubble was big, just wait for the securities derivatives market to crash with trillions of dollars of what was publicly owned projects.  It will cost us twice; once when we give away public property, and again when we bail out the banks and do not receive ownership of the infrastructure in return. At least when the bond market collapses the government can buy back the bonds and forgive its own debt.

Information and the Media

The consolidation of media distribution and communications companies is a real threat to not only the access Americans have to information, but to the economy as a whole.  Net Neutrality is one of the strongest drivers of the economy giving all people equal access to the Internet and its services.  Large telecom companies want to throttle back this access and create a market for high speed broadband access for users as well as distributors of content.  A Trump FCC and Supreme Court will allow for the death of Net Neutrality.

This will raise costs for consumers for substandard access to the Internet and media.  It will bankrupt entire industries who cannot pay for their customers to access their content on the preferred networks of telecom giants like Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T.

Trump has made no secret of his willingness to crush the free press. Should telecoms and ISPs be able to restrict access to the Internet for news sources and social media this could greatly impede the ability of the public to make informed decisions. Trump would like to see the press corps dissolve, and go about his administrative functions as the head of state for the most powerful nation on Earth unchecked.  Outside of puff pieces, Trump does not want journalists reporting on him.

We do not want to mince words.  Trump will ruin the economy in the long term for short term gains. An economy is defined by the movement of goods, capital, services, people, and information.  His infrastructure plan will impede the movement of people, goods and services. His media and communications plane will impede the movement of information.  With the collapse of four of the five tenets of an economy the newly unregulated capital will also vanish.  Which brings us to a very important topic…

The Safety Net

The Republicans in Congress want to privatize everything. Absolutely everything.  They want to invest Medicare and Social Security into the stock market.  This would increase the amount brokers and hedge fund managers would make on trades and gains on the market, with no skin in the game themselves, as 250 million Americans are compelled to pay into the gambles and whims of Wall Street suits. Today, should the market collapse, the last bastion of financial sanctuary for Americans is Social Security and Medicare.  If the Republicans have their way, and invest Social Security and Medicare into the precarious market of a Trump administration, then should the market crash, then the populace of the entire nation also collapses.  The Great Depression will have nothing on the ruin this act will wrought.  This is Murphy’s Law 101.

Trump, time and again, says that he wants to “repeal and replace” Obamacare.  It has been two years and he has not stated what he would replace it with.  Should Congress successfully repeal the ACA and 20 million Americans go back to being uninsured the political fallout for Trump would be very large.

The President-elect also has plans to abolish the Veterans Affairs and privatize the VA hospitals. As it stands today, the VA, Medicare, and Medicaid are the three most effective and efficient providers of healthcare in the United States.  The VA also enjoys the highest patient satisfaction of any hospital system in the nation.  What the federal government provides in healthcare for one to two cents on the dollar, private industry does for 30 cents on the dollar. Under a Trump administration costs will skyrocket and care will vanish. When the past 8 years of growth the nation has experienced comes crashing down there will be no safety net for the populace since all of the reinvested Social Security capital will have vanished as well.

The Military

We expect the military budget to explode. The continued privatization of military functions; the further closure of bases and consolidation leading to both lucrative construction contracts and pennies-on-the-dollar acquisitions of prime government real estate; and the rampant purchasing of non-effective military hardware will all contribute to the runaway military budget.

Trump’s backing among infantry is unquestioned. His backing by commanders who control the nuclear arsenal is unclear. Considering Trump’s blasé attitude toward the use of nuclear arms terrifies those who manage such weapons, there is a real possibility Trump could order a first strike nuclear launch and those orders would be refused. What happens after that is anyone’s guess.

What we will end up with in the near future is a bloated military budget, and a pentagon preoccupied with moving personnel from bases around the world and consolidating them here at home while international relations fall apart elsewhere on the planet. A tenuous situation to say the least. Trump’s impending incompetence, stripping of civil rights, and weakening of US military dominance around the globe, when combined with an impending economic collapse, means the overthrow of our government by a military faction to be a stronger than ever possibility.

Authoritarianism and Fascism

It is no small measure than many are concerned with Trump’s rhetoric with regards to his administration becoming authoritarian or even fascist. During the debates Trump said he would jail his opponent, he repeatedly quoted white nationalists and fascists on social media, and he wants even greater policing authority. Combine these attributes with his attitude toward a free press, satire and free expression, and his love affair with Hitler’s speeches, and we have a very real possibility that his narcissistic personality disorder could lead to an authoritarian crack down on dissent.
We have never elected someone as dangerous as Donald Trump to the presidency of the United States. He becomes bored with the details of the job, he is an admitted sexual predator, a fraud, and is interested in his own financial gain. Trump has been contemplating a run for the presidency for decades; he has thought about exactly how he will do this.


The Institute for Science and Policy feels that a Trump Presidency has the very real possibility to seeing the end of Democracy, Liberty, and Rights in the United States. We do not want to mince words; he is a danger to us all. If even one of these outcomes were come true it would spell disaster for our nation and would be an historic failure of our system of government.
Our goal is to not just spout doom and gloom, but to find solutions to these dangers as soon as possible.

-Houston Wade, Executive Director, The Institute for Science and Policy

Now it is time to raise money. Ugh!

As with all non-profits, we need sweet, sweet cash from you to make this happen.  At the moment we have a GoFundMe established entitled “The Resistance”.  The name is a little tongue in cheek, but we mean it.  We aim to form a resistance to the authoritarian nature of the Trump administration.

Donald Trump has already made the head of Breitbart, Steve Bannon, his chief policy advisor. Bannon is leader of the “alt-Right” movement, also known as the more familiar “white nationalism”.

Just the other day another Trump surrogate used the atrocity that was the Japanese Internment during WWII as precedent for registering and interning an entire religious minority in this country.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZkJUvt3cj0
These men are dangerous and must be stopped.  Donate today!

Welcome to the new page for the Institute for Science and Policy!

james-madisons-quotes-1

The Institute has been created as a reaction to our new reality, Donald J Trump is now president-elect…

In order to safeguard the lives and interests of all Americans regardless of religion, sex, orientation, gender, race, or ethnicity, the Institute for Science and Policy has a plan in place to keep the terrifying campaign promises of Donald Trump from becoming the dystopian nightmare.

Our targeted areas of influence include tackling the rise of white nationalism in the wake of Trump’s election; holding the Democratic Party accountable as an opposition party to Trump’s potentially damaging positions and policies; acting a conduit for other groups opposed to the authoritarian nature of many positioned to be in the Trump White House; and to ensure the continued operation of countless Bureaucrats who see to it the government functions via countless agencies which may now come under fire via directors and appointees bent on their destruction.

The Institute regards the proliferation of science and civil liberties to be connected.  Information, education, research, opportunity, and the free exchange of ideas are central to maintaining a successful United States of America.

-Houston Wade, Executive Director and Chairman of the Board, The Institute for Science and Policy.