While Crypto Bro Scammed Clients, Reporters Scammed Readers

Today, you probably know who Sam Bankman-Fried and FTX are, and the details of why he and his company are front-page news are emerging at an amazing pace. Here’s the short version: Bankman-Fried—a boyish-looking cryptocurrency baron known commonly as SBF—announced that his lauded cryptocurrency exchange, FTX, had lost at least $1 billion in client funds, sending the crypto market into a tailspin (Fox Business11/16/22). The company, once the third-largest cryptocurrency exchange (AP11/16/22), has filed for bankruptcy. Lest one think this is a debacle that only affects crypto bros, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warns that “the sector’s links to the broader financial system could cause wider stability issues” (New York Times11/17/22).

How could this happen? How could no one have seen this coming? These are the questions many people are asking. One problem is that in the months leading up to Bankman-Fried’s transition from financial genius to possible financial criminal (Yahoo Finance11/14/22), he received little scrutiny in the media. On the contrary, he was celebrated.

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Sam Bankman-Fried and FTX Cronies Gave $300k to House Committee Members Investigating Him

Sam Bankman-Fried and executives at his cryptocurrency firm contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to members of the House committee that will hold hearings next month on the company’s collapse.

Bankman-Fried and his co-founders at FTX contributed $300,351 to nine members of the House Financial Services Committee, according to Federal Election Commission records. Some of the largest contributions were to Democrats on the committee’s Digital Assets Working Group, which worked on regulation of the crypto industry. Rep. Maxine Waters (D., Calif.), who chairs the committee, announced a probe this week into FTX’s collapse after the company declared bankruptcy, wiping out billions of dollars in customers’ portfolios. The Justice Department and Securities Exchange Commission are reportedly investigating Bankman-Fried for potential misuse of customer funds.

Bankman-Fried’s donations to committee members could raise concerns that the lawmakers will not adequately investigate the crypto kingpin, who spent millions on advertising, lobbying, and philanthropic causes to burnish his company’s image as an ethical crypto company in an industry rife with scam artists. Of the nine committee members who received contributions from Bankman-Fried, only Rep. Chuy Garcia (D., Ill.) has said he would return a $2,900 contribution from the billionaire. While Waters said the committee will investigate FTX’s “collapse,” the Democrat has no apparent plans to look into Bankman-Fried’s efforts to buy favor in Washington.

Waters dodged questions this week about whether she is concerned about Bankman-Fried’s political donations. “Well, I don’t want to get into that. As a matter of fact, both sides, Democrats and Republicans, have received donations,” she told Fox Business.

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FBI Director Cannot ‘Be Sure’ Whether Facebook Is Sending User Information to Agents

FBI Director Christopher Wray said Thursday he cannot “be sure” whether Facebook is sending the agency user information without being compelled to do so, an act that would violate the law.

Wray’s remark in response to a question from Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) comes after Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee released a report (pdf) in early November in which a whistleblower suggested that the FBI has a “special relationship” with Facebook “in which it accepts private user information without any consent or legal process.”

The move is part of a program “likely codenamed ‘Operation Bronze Griffin,’” said the report. It alleges that the types of user content that Facebook provides the FBI “have a partisan focus, tending only to concern users from one side of the political spectrum,” and that there is a pro-Democrat bias within the FBI.

On Thursday, Paul asked Wray at a Senate Homeland Security Committee hearing on the report’s allegations, “Is Facebook or any other social media company supplying private messages or data on American users that is not compelled by the government or the FBI?”

“Not compelled, in other words, not in response to legal process?” Wray queried.

“No warrant, no subpoena, they’re just supplying you information on their users?” Paul said.

“I don’t believe so,” Wray responded. “But I can’t sit here and be sure about that as I as I sit here.”

Paul told Wray that if Facebook is supplying the FBI with user information, it would be against the law—the Stored Communications Act, part of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986—which “prohibits providers from sharing electronic communications with any person or entity, unless it’s compelled.”

“This was done to protect the privacy of people, so we could feel like we can send an email or direct message to people without having that information given over,” Paul said.

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FTX partnership with Ukraine is latest chapter in shady Western aid saga

The Ukrainian government mysteriously disappeared online records of its fundraising arrangement with the FTX crypto scam just days before the scandal erupted. The initiative claims to have raised $60 million for Ukraine, but where did the money go?

The demise of FTX, the fifth-biggest cryptocurrency exchange by trade volume in 2022, and the second-largest by holdings, has sent a wave of chaos through global financial markets. 

As the turbulence grows, the government of Ukraine is conducting an ongoing cleanup and whitewashing operation to rid any and all references to a high-level cryptocurrency fundraising arrangement it struck with FTX from the web. Eerily, it seems to have commenced just days before the scandal erupted. 

Online records unearthed by The Grayzone claim tens of millions were raised by FTX for the Ukrainian government, and put to a variety of belligerent uses. But with the company now exposed as a Potemkin village lacking underlying assets, and major question marks hanging over whether its operations were from day one fraudulent top to bottom, where does that leave the supposedly successful donation scheme? Were those sums truly raised, and if so, to what purposes were they actually put?

FTX’s destruction resulted from a mass sell-off of the company’s native bitcoin token, FTT, by the rival exchange, Binance. Its value plummeted, prompting a three-day “run” on billions of dollars worth of cryptocurrency, which in turn created – or exposed – a “liquidity crisis” within FTX, as it did not have the available assets required to redeem client withdrawals. FTX filed for bankruptcy on November 11th. 

FTX founder and top Democrat Party donor Sam Bankman-Fried now faces criminal investigations in the Bahamas, where the exchange was headquartered, and calls for official investigations into the largely unregulated cryptocurrency industry are reverberating across the globe.

The sudden death of FTX has been compared to the 2008 disintegration of Lehman Brothers that precipitated the financial crisis.

Massive customer holdings have apparently gone missing thanks to a secret “back door” in the FTX bookkeeping system that allowed Bankman-Fried to make changes to the company’s financial records without any accountability. This connivance may have been used to hide at least $10 billion in client funds Bankman-Fried transferred from exchange to another company he founded, digital asset trader Alameda Research. 

While mainstream media pores over the details of Bankman-Fried’s gargantuan crypto scam, not one single major outlet has investigated or even acknowledged FTX’s relationship with the government of Ukraine. 

Were client holdings unaccountably and illegally funneled into the West’s proxy war? Or did the supposed aid FTX sent to Kiev find its way into the hands of Ukrainian scammers, corrupt warlords and illicit actors? 

The corporate media’s failure to explore these questions appears all the more perverse given Bankman-Fried’s flamboyant promotion of his intimate financial relationship with the government of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

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Pfizer And Moderna To Investigate Their Own Vaccines For Myocarditis Risks

Why is Big Pharma investigating their own covid vaccines for myocarditis side effects if the vaccines were already supposedly tested and proven safe and effective?

Both Pfizer and Moderna have announced that they will be undertaking studies to determine the longer term risks of Myocarditis (an inflammatory condition of the heart which can lead to death) for people who have been injected with the mRNA based covid vaccines. The decision comes after the release of multiple medical studies which show a correlation and causation between the vaccines and an exponential increase in heart problems, specifically among men 40 years old and younger. Only a year ago the link between covid vaccinations and myocarditis was widely denied.

Studies also show that myocarditis risk increases with the number of boosters a person has taken.

Before the year 2020, the average vaccine was tested and re-tested by pharmaceutical companies and the FDA for 10 to 15 years before it could be released to the public. This was done not only because testing is a complex process with a lot of red tape involved, but also because it is the only way to discover any long term side-effects that might be associated with a particular immunization product. If you read any medical journal or scientific outline on vaccine development published before 2020, they all agree that long term testing is necessary for public safety.

Suddenly, after 2020 and the advent of public activism against the covid mandates, a host of medical “professionals” and bureaucrats began arguing that the mRNA vaccines do not need the same lengthy testing time frame because government funding allowed for everything to be accomplished much faster. This is a lie.

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