Guilty As Charged

Grind for September 29th, 2018
“One man with courage is a majority.”

– Thomas Jefferson

I Told You So

The Headline

Trump accuses China of meddling in US elections

The Grind

Speaking at a UN meeting on Wednesday, President Trump claimed that China was trying to interfere in the upcoming midterm elections.

“Regrettably, we found that China has been attempting to interfere in our upcoming 2018 election…against my administration,” said Trump. “They do not want me or us to win because I am the first president ever to challenge China on trade, and we are winning on trade – we are winning at every level.”

Trump has already imposed steep taxes on steel and aluminum and on $50 billion in Chinese imports. Earlier this month, he vowed to impose tariffs on an additional $257 billion in Chinese goods after Beijing backed out of planned trade talks.

Trump has also threatened to tax 100% of Chinese imports (which in 2017 totaled more than $500 billion) if the two sides fail to resume negotiations.

The Details

Chinese officials view Trump’s recent threats as an appeal to his voter base and fear what could happen if the GOP comes out ahead in November.

“The Chinese government uses all of the capabilities at their disposal to influence US policies, spread propaganda, manipulate the media, and pressure individuals,” said Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats on Tuesday.

Earlier this month, National Security Adviser John Bolton confirmed that Chinese meddling (along with Iranian and North Korean meddling) is “a sufficient national security concern.”

China insists it has done nothing wrong.

“We did not and will not interfere in any countries’ domestic affairs,” stated Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. “We refuse to accept any unwarranted accusations against China.”

Justice Is Served

The Headline

Bill Cosby sentenced to 3-10 years in prison; designated a “sexually violent predator”

The Grind

Legendary comedian Bill Cosby on Tuesday received a sentence of 3-10 years in prison for drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand in 2004.

His sentence is considerably lighter than the maximum sentence for his crimes – which in this case would have been 30 years.

Cosby’s legal team plans to appeal the ruling, but the former star will remain in jail until a final decision is reached.

The sentence includes the designation “sexually violent predator,” meaning the man once known as “America’s Dad” will appear on sex offender lists for the rest of his life.

Cosby has admitted to giving women drugs (including Quaaludes) and alcohol before sex, but insists that all interactions were consensual.

The Implication

Cosby’s trial is the first to result in a conviction following the rise of the #MeToo movement. Over the past two years, more than 200 powerful individuals have been accused of sexual harassment and assault including: Morgan Freeman, Kevin Spacey, Bill O’Reilly, Roy Moore, Donald Trump, and Sean Hannity.

More than anything else, the trial against Cosby represents a victory for the 60+ women who have accused him of sexual misconduct.

“I’ve waited 32 years for this day, hoping my nightmares would go away,” said Chelan Lasha, who joined other victims outside the courthouse on Tuesday. “I prayed every day that Mr. Cosby would go to prison and pay his dues.”

Did you know… Early Romans used to use porcupine quills as toothpicks.