TRNS News Notes is brought to you by Victoria Jones. Victoria Jones is the Chief White House correspondent and global analyst of the Washington DC based Talk Radio News Service, where her insight and analysis are made available to over 400 news talk radio stations around the country and internationally.


News Now

  • Bush 41 slams Cheney, Rummy in book
  • US, UK: Bomb may have downed Russian plane
  • US won’t pause Keystone review
  • US defense chief to carrier in South China Sea
  • 2016: What do “Wal-Mart” moms want?
  • Scrutiny for Rubio: Credit card use
  • Senate report rips Pentagon: “Paid patriotism”
  • Suicide “hero” cop was embezzler

Bush 41 Slams Cheney, Rummy in Book (NYT, me)
• Former President George H.W. Bush for the first time is publicly slamming key members of his son’s admin. In interviews with his biographer, Bush 41 said that VP Dick Cheney had built “his own empire.” SecDef Donald Rumsfeld was an “arrogant fellow” who couldn’t see how others thought and “served the president badly.” (this doesn’t actually help Jeb – too many Bushes)
• The book, “Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush” by Jon Meacham – Newsweek – also praises George W. Bush but says he was at times too bellicose. “Hot rhetoric is pretty easy to get headlines but it doesn’t necessarily solve the diplomatic problem.” Bush said his son was responsible for empowering Cheney and Rumsfeld (true)
• He said he thought Cheney had changed since serving in his cabinet. “He just became very hard-line and very different from the Dick Cheney I knew and worked with.” 9/11 to blame: “Just iron-ass. His seeming knuckling under to the real hard-charging guys who want to fight about everything, use force to get our way in the Middle East.”
• “I’ve concluded that Lynne Cheney is a lot of the eminence grise here – iron ass, tough as nails, driving.” Cheney in the piece denied that was the case. But, ultimately, “the buck stops there,” Bush said, meaning his son. “He’s my son, he did his best and I’m in for him. It’s that simple an equation.” (Bush is a fan of “iron ass,”) (maybe Bush could have told W earlier…)

• Rumsfeld: “I don’t like what he did, and I think it hurt the president having his iron-ass view of everything. I’ve never been that close to him anyway. There’s a lack of humility, a lack of seeing what the other guy thinks. He’s more kick ass and take names, take numbers. I think he paid a price for that.” (no he didn’t – he’s not in jail) (whole article is fascinating – worth a read)


• A report out today by PayScale says women in the U.S. are paid less for equal work than men in all industries. Fathers earned the highest median salaries at about $67,900, compared to $46,800 for married mothers. The gender pay gap widened further as the job level increased (Reuters)
US, UK: Bomb May Have Downed Russian Plane (Telegraph, NYT, BBC, TRNS, me)
• The U.S. and Britain said Wednesday a bomb may have brought down a Russian airliner which crashed in Egypt, as ISIS insisted it caused the disaster. Britain and Ireland suspended flights to and from resort town Sharm el Sheikh, where the plane took off on Saturday bound for St Petersburg before crashing minutes later, killing all 224 people on board. Egypt pushed back against that today
• “A bomb is a highly possible scenario,” a U.S. official said. “It would be something that ISIL would want to do.” British PM David Cameron’s office said that “as more info has come to light, we have become concerned that the plane may well have been brought down by an explosive device.”
• Meanwhile, the head of Sharm el Sheikh airport has been replaced. (that’s more telling than all Egypt’s posturing) The announcement comes as Egyptian President al Sisi holds talks today with Cameron in London, during his first visit to Britain since he led the army’s overthrow of his predecessor Mohamed Morsi

• Interactive: Investigating the Russian plane crash (NYT)


• Moscow and Egypt both dismissed ISIS’s initial claim it brought down the Airbus A-321 in Egypt’s restive Sinai Peninsula, but the jihadists on Wednesday again insisted, “Prove that we didn’t bring it down, and how it came down. We will detail how it came down at the time of our choosing” in an audio statement posted online
• The ISIS affiliate in Egypt is waging a bloody insurgency in the north of the Sinai Peninsula that has killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers. Egypt has played down the possibility of a bomb attack and stressed the need to wait for the results of an international investigation, keen to preserve the country’s economically viable tourism sector
• A U.S. military satellite picked up a heat flash at the time of the crash that could point to a catastrophic event during the flight. Experts said the fact that debris and bodies were strewn over a wide area indicated the aircraft disintegrated in midair, meaning the crash was likely caused by a technical fault or a bomb on board


• Army Col Steve Warren, spox for the U.S.-led coalition countering ISIS, told reporters Wednesday that less than 10% of Russian airstrikes in Syria are targeting the militant group (which begs the question why ISIS in Sinai Peninsula would bomb a Russian plane for bombing ISIS in Syria when in fact the U.S.-led coalition is bombing ISIS… why’s no one asking this question?) (me, TRNS)
US Won’t Pause Keystone Review (Reuters, NYT, Hill TRNS, me)
• The U.S. State Dept formally denied a request on Wednesday to pause the review of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline “out of respect for that process and all the input that has gone into it,” a decision expected to lead to the project’s rejection by the Obama admin (oh get on with it, then. you know you want to…)
• TransCanada’s request to State for a delay was seen by many as an attempt to postpone the decision until after President Obama left office and a new president more friendly to the plan took over in 2017. Democratic 2016er Sen Bernie Sanders (I-Vt) on Wednesday said Obama should reject Keystone before UN climate talks this December
• Since it was proposed seven years ago, the pipeline has been the heart of a struggle between environmentalists opposed to oil sands development and defenders of fossil fuels. The nearly 1,200 mile pipeline would carry 830,000 barrels a day of mostly Canadian oil sands crude to Nebraska en route to refineries and ports along the U.S. Gulf Coast
• Newly elected Canadian President Justin Trudeau has supported Keystone, while pledging to improve Canada’s climate change record. TransCanada said it respects State’s decision and will continue to press for approval. Earlier, Russ Girling, the CEO, rejected the idea that seeking the delay was an effort to manipulate the political system (of course not)
• Environmental advocates say Obama is poised to reject the pipeline in large part to make a bold statement about his commitment to curb climate change in advance of a UN summit meeting in Paris in December. He’ll seek to broker an accord at the gathering, committing every nation to enacting new policies to counter global warming


• Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen told the House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday that low unemployment, continued growth and faith in a coming return of inflation means the country is ready for higher interest rates: “December would be a live possibility.” (another one who should get on with it, then) (Reuters, me)
US Defense Chief to Carrier in South China Sea (AP, Reuters, me)
• SecDef Ash Carter flew to a U.S. aircraft carrier transiting the disputed South China Sea today and blamed China for rising tension in the region on a visit sure to infuriate Beijing
• Carter, who was visiting Malaysia, is using the visit to the USS Theodore Roosevelt to amplify the U.S. view that China is making excessive claims that nearly all of the South China Sea is its territory. He’s also signaling that the U.S. will keep a strong naval presence in the region in support of nations seeking to preserve stability
• Malaysian Defense Minister Hussein planned to accompany Carter to the carrier, highlighting U.S. efforts to strengthen defense partnerships in the Asia-Pacific. Malaysia is among several countries that claim a portion of the South China Sea and disagree with China’s building of artificial islands
• Last week, the U.S. sent a guided missile destroyer, the USS Lassen, on a brief patrol inside the 12 nautical mile radius that China claims as its territorial waters around Subi Reef, an artificial island built by the Chinese. The Chinese denounced the move as provocative and illegal
• The U.S. contends that under international law the artificial islands built by China are high seas. They means they’re not eligible for the 12 nautical mile zone granted to maritime features such as naturally formed islands capable of sustaining human habitation or economic life. Carter on Wednesday called on all claimants to halt reclamation

• A group of Senate Democrats Wednesday wrote to the Army to investigate allegations that it dismissed 22,000 soldiers since 2009 for “misconduct” after they were diagnosed with mental health disorders after they returned from Iran or Afghanistan. They want an investigation by the Army’s IG (Hill)

2016: What Do “Walmart Moms” Want? (NBC News, me)
• A group of 10 Republican women in New Hampshire, whose household incomes range from $25,000 to $150,000, vocalized the intense stress they feel about their financial situation, with two women admitting crying when they have to pay the bills
• The Wal-Mart mom demographic, which consists of women who have at least one child under 18 living at home and have shopped at Wal-Mart in the past month, have become a highly coveted demographic. They’re swing voters and have supported the winning candidate or party in every election except 2014, when they supported Democrats in the midterms
• When asked for one word or short phrase to describe how things are going in the country, all 10 respondents gave deeply negative answers, including: unrest, awful, horrible, crappy and freighting. While national debt was a concern, the main issue was their personal financial security. Cost of health care, food and heat, for example
• On presidential candidates, they were negative towards Donald Trump. “I think it’s insulting that Donald Trump is even on the stage,” one woman said. “Trump might be good but then he starts talking,” one woman said. Another said, “He’s so insulting.”


• Ben Carson had a #fail in an interview with the Miami Herald Wednesday, when asked about U.S.-Cuba policies (you’d think he’d be prepped). He didn’t know what wet-foot dry-foot was – “you’re going to have to explain to me exactly what you mean by that.” He stumbled over the Cuban Adjustment Act and got Raul Castro’s age wrong, among other things – it’s Miami (Miami Herald, me)
Ben Carson’s Up, O’Malley’s Down (NBC News, me)
• When Ben Carson’s name was mentioned, a collective “ahhhh” was heard, like they saw a picture of a panda. The women described him as “gentle” and “caring.” Seven were considering Carson. Nine were considering Marco Rubio. While the women seemed to like Jeb Bush, they couldn’t seem to get past his last name
• A similar focus group of Democratic Wal-Mart moms in Des Moines, Iowa, also felt squeezed financially but were less pessimistic. Terms used to describe the state of the country included: could be better, debt, scary, divided, horrible, gotten better since the recession (not exactly ringing endorsement)
• While Hillary Clinton had support in the group, including one ardent supporter, words used to describe her were shady and shifty and one said that she sold out. She was also called strong, confident and intelligent (i’m not feeling the love)
• About half the women didn’t know much about Bernie Sanders. Among those who did, he was described as someone with conviction and passionate and consistent, also wise. One woman called him extreme. Not one woman said she was considering Martin O’Malley (guess taking his shirt off was a fail)


• It’s a nail-biter for Gov Chris Christie (R-NJ) today. Fox Business will announce the lineup of next week’s GOP debate – and Christie might not make the cut for the main stage as he’s hovering at 2% in polls and needs to be at 2.5%. It’s worse for Gov Bobby Jindal (R-La) and former Gov George Pataki (R-NY) – they might not make the debate at all… (Politico, me)

Scrutiny for Rubio: Credit Card Use (NYT, me)
• GOP presidential candidate Sen Marco Rubio (R-Fla) says he’ll release in the next few weeks all of the statements detailing his use of an American Express card that he shared with the Republican Party of Florida. Donald Trump has attacked him over it in recent days
• The decision to release the records highlights the enduring potency of a controversy rooted in Rubio’s days as a young state representative in Florida that he and his aides thought had been put to rest with his 2010 election to the Senate. His use of the card for a family reunion, groceries and flights was a recurring issue in that campaign (issue is financial competency)
• Fearing that Rubio could surpass him in polls, Trump has said Rubio is “a disaster with his credit cards.” “He has a very bad record of finances.” A super PAC supporting Hillary Clinton demanded to know Wednesday why Rubio waited so long to release the records, wondering, “What is he hiding?” (she’s worried about him because of the generation gap)
• The risk for Rubio, who has acknowledged “a lack of bookkeeping skills,” is that the credit card may become a symbol of a larger pattern of financial challenges in his recent past, including a brush with foreclosure on a second home in 2010 over late mortgage payments and the recent liquidation of a retirement account that prompted a large tax penalty

• Rubio on Wednesday portrayed himself as an everyday American who can relate to the struggles of the electorate. “I obviously don’t come from a wealthy family,” he said on ABC. During his 2010 Senate campaign, Rubio refused to release the full records of his charges on the card, issued by American Express, calling it an “internal party matter.” (all out in the wash now)


• Hispanic advocacy group Deport Racism is offering $5,000 to any audience member who calls GOP 2016er Donald Trump a “racist” on air when he hosts Saturday Night Live this weekend. The group released a profanity-laced (really, really rude) video Wednesday featuring two Hispanic children cursing Trump’s immigration policies (Hill, me)
Senate Report Rips Pentagon: “Paid Patriotism” (NYT, Hill, Reuters, me)
• Over the past four years, the Army National Guard and other branches have signed deals worth $6.8 million with teams from the NFL, Major League Baseball and other sports leagues that included “paid-for patriotism,” said Sens Jeff Flake (R-Ariz) and John McCain (R-Ariz) on Wednesday in a scathing report
• It’s unclear exactly how much of that marketing money paid for ceremonies with names like “Salute to Service” and other recognition of the armed forces. And the report conceded that $6.8 million was a sliver of the $53 million the military spent on advertising with sports teams during that time. But:
• “If the most compelling message about military service we can deliver to prospective recruits and influencers is the promise of game tickets, gifts and player appearances, we need to rethink our approach to how we are inspiring qualified men and women to military service,” the report said
• NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, in a letter to the senators that was provided in the report, said that the league planned to review all contracts between teams and the military for the “inappropriate” use of recruiting funds
• The senators offered an amendment to next year’s defense spending bill that passed this year that prohibits the use of taxpayer money to pay for military tributes at sporting events. such as the $49,000 the Wisconsin Army National Guard paid the Milwaukee Brewers last year to sponsor some playings of “God Bless America.” (read NYT or Hill – mind-boggling)
Suicide “Hero” Cop Was Embezzler (AP, me)
• For weeks, investigators focused on finding the killers of a small-town police officer known as “GI Joe.” Thousands attended the funeral of Fox Lake Lt Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, and many lauded him as a hero, the latest cop to give his life to keep other Americans safe
• But after an intense and costly manhunt for three phantom suspects came up empty, investigators realized he was a small-time embezzler, who meticulously staged his death to make it look like he was slain in the line of duty. In fact, he killed himself on 1 Sept because his theft of thousands of dollars from a youth program was about to be exposed
• Recovered text messages and other records show Gliniewicz embezzled from the village’s Police Explorer program for seven years, spending the money on mortgage payments, travel expenses, gym memberships, adult websites, a $9,000 family vacation to Hawaii and loans to friends, Lake County Major Crimes Task Force Commander George Filenko said Wednesday
• Minutes before he died, Gliniewicz radioed that he was chasing three suspicious men in a swampy area of Fox Lake. The first bullet from his handgun had struck his cell phone and ballistic vest. The second pierced his upper chest. His head was scraped and bruised, although the coroner said that could have been intentional


Incriminating Texts: “im pretty well f***ed”
• An intense manhunt began and grew quickly, with hundreds of officers, helicopters and K-9 units. Some 50 suburban Chicago police depts and sheriff’s offices assisted. More than 100 people submitted DNA. Asked Wed at the presser whether that evidence will now be destroyed, Filenko said he didn’t know (bit disturbing)
• Gliniewicz’s family had dismissed the suggestion of suicide. But investigators were uncovering incriminating texts and Facebook messages Gliniewicz had sent. In them, he expressed fears as early as May about the new village administrator’s efforts to audit municipal programs. He had deleted the messages, but investigators recovered them
• “If she gets ahold of the old checking account, im pretty well f***ed,” the first message reads. On 31 Aug, the day before he killed himself, he wrote that the administrator had demanded a complete inventory and financial report on the program. Illinois media reported late Wed that Gliniewicz’s wife and son are also under investigation in the embezzlement scheme
• Earlier Wed, Administrator Anne Marrin said the officer had threatened her personally after she began asking tough questions. In one text, Gliniewicz discusses trying to get Marrin out of office, perhaps by arresting her for drunk driving or worse: “…thougit through MANY SCENARIOS from planting things to the volo bog,” – a local body of water
• Villagers donated to support his family. “You never knew he was this kind of man,” said Kathy Pederson, a single mother who considered Gliniewicz a father figure for her son. Now, she said, “people are outraged and they are taking down the posters … they want their money back.”


• Words of the year! “Binge-watch,” “manspreading,” “clean eating,” “dadbod,” “ghosting,” “swipe,” “transgender,” “contactless,” “Corbynomics,” “shaming.” Lexicographers saw a 200% increase in the use of “binge watch” since last year. Apparently, that’s all y’all are doing… when you’re not swiping some poor soul on Tinder, that is, or ghosting them (me, Telegraph)

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Victoria Jones – Editor

TRNS’ Loree Lewis and Nicholas Salazar contributed to this report


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