Bob Weinstein Also Accused Of Harassment – “Was An Abusive Boss”

In a shocking development that discredits claims by top Weinstein Company executives that the company was unaware of disgraced co-founder Harvey Weinstein’s lecherous behavior, a former Hollywood show runner has come forward to accuse Bob Weinstein, who co-founded the eponymous film studio with his brother in 2005, of harassment during production of a Spike TV film series, Variety reports.

Amanda Segel, an executive producer of “Mist,” said Weinstein repeatedly made romantic overtures to her and asked her to join him for private dinners. The harassment began in the summer of 2016 and continued on and off for about three months until Segel’s lawyer, David Fox of Myman Greenspan, informed TWC executives — including COO David Glasser — that she would leave the show if Bob Weinstein did not stop contacting her on personal matters.

“’No’ should be enough,” Segel told Variety. “After ‘no,’ anybody who has asked you out should just move on. Bob kept referring to me that he wanted to have a friendship. He didn’t want a friendship. He wanted more than that. My hope is that ‘no’ is enough from now on.”

 

A representative for Bob Weinstein denied that he engaged in any inappropriate behavior in a statement to Variety.

“Bob Weinstein had dinner with Ms. Segel in LA in June 2016. He denies any claims that he behaved inappropriately at or after the dinner. It is most unfortunate that any such claim has been made,” the statement said.
A rep for Weinstein Co. also denied that Glasser was contacted by Segel’s lawyer.

The revelation will only accelerate the process of industry figures distancing themselves from the Weinstein Co. The company has reportedly been sent into a tailspin after more than 30 women came forward to accuse Bob’s brother Harvey of being a serial sexual predator. Harvey, who is currently in rehab in Arizona, is facing criminal investigations in both the US and the UK.

Yesterday, Weinstein Co. revealed that it had received an emergency infusion of cash from Colony Investments, a firm run by Trump friend and adviser Thomas Barrick. The investment firm is reportedly in talks to purchase most of Weinstein’s major assets.

In the days after the scandal, Bob Weinstein publicly condemned his brother’s actions and claimed that he was unaware of his brother’s history of sexual assault and harassment. He said in a recent interview that his brother has not expressed “one shred of remorse” for his actions, and is solely fixated on how he can rehabilitate his image and regain his position of power within the industry. Segel said her experiences with Weinstein left her shaken and angry. Segel told Variety that Weinstein’s untoward advances began after she accepted a dinner invitation during 2016 in the hopes of establishing a professional relationship with the producer of a show called “the Mist” that had a 10 episode run that wrapped in August. 

Segel’s discomfort with Bob Weinstein began in June 2016 when he invited her out to dinner in Los Angeles, at Dan Tana’s restaurant. Segel had been told by coworkers that Bob Weinstein had inquired with them whether she was single. She agreed to go to dinner with him in an effort to establish a professional relationship with the head of the company behind “The Mist.”

 

During the dinner, Weinstein asked Segel highly intimate questions and made romantic overtures to her, according to Segel. He wanted to know her age because he told her he didn’t want to date anyone younger than his daughter. He told Segel that he was staying at the Beverly Hills Hotel because his daughter was staying at his home in Los Angeles.

 

About halfway through the dinner, Weinstein asked Segel if she would drive him back to the hotel so that he could let his driver go for the night. Segel agreed. When she took him to the Sunset Boulevard hotel, he asked her to come up to his room. She declined.

Weinstein’s advances continued. He would send Segel creepy emails and even once invited her to a “party” at his place that she avoided because she suspected it was a ruse to get her alone.

Eventually Weinstein gave up, but he soon started unfairly targeting Segel for criticism, leading to a breakdown in their working relationship. Segel told her lawyer about the harassment, and eventually reached an agreement with the Weinstein Company that she would never be in the presence of Weinstein, or on calls with Weinstein, during production of “the Mist”. The studio said it would release her from her contract if the show was picked up for a second season. 

After that night, Weinstein began sending emails to Segel with questions that were outside the scope of work on “The Mist.” He said he wanted them to be friends. She said that was possible but in a non romantic way, and reiterated that she was not open to dating.

 

In a scenario that echoes some of the allegations against Harvey Weinstein, Segel asserts that during this period Bob Weinstein invited her to a house he’d rented in Malibu for a party. When he called Segel to tell her the address of the house, she gathered that it was not a party but an invitation for the two of them to be alone. She did not attend.

 

Bob Weinstein continued to ask Segel out to dinner between June and August of 2016 joking at times that he was her boss and could fire her if she didn’t agree. Segel agreed to another dinner with him in which she was accompanied by “Mist” executive producer and writer Christian Torpe. Weinstein was clearly unhappy with Torpe’s presence at the dinner, according to Segel.

 

Eventually, Weinstein stopped the unwanted attention toward Segel. During a notes conference call with network executives about the show, Segel says Weinstein became angry and screamed at Segel over a production issue that she says was out of her control. When questioned about the outburst by others on the call, Segel expressed her view that she had been sexually harassed by Weinstein for three months. After that incident, Segel had her lawyer contact TWC executives with the ultimatum that she would leave the show if Weinstein did not stay away from her.

 

After much back and forth between Segel, her lawyer and TWC executives, an agreement was reached that Segel would continue her work on the show but arrangements were made that she was never to be in the same room as Weinstein or on telephone calls with him, an agreement that was honored by Weinstein. It was also agreed that TWC would let Segel out of its option to keep her on the show if it was picked up for a second season.

Segel is presently working on a new series, in a work environment she described as pleasantly low-key. She’s also focused on developing her own projects.

Unfortunately, as is the case with Bob’s brother and many other serial abusers in Hollywood, this type of behavior is rarely an isolated incident. Now, we wait and see if more accusers come forward implicating the brother, in a scandal that has changed the discourse and exposed a culture of sexual exploitation at the highest levels of the entertainment industry.

* * *

In a separate report published Tuesday evening, the Wall Street Journal – who were first to report that the Weinstein Company’s board was in talks to sell – published a lengthy feature about Bob’s workplace behavior. Former employees and colleagues – most of whom were anonymous but a handful of whom were named – recounted Bob Weinstein’s history of aggressive, bullying workplace behavior and his tendency to abuse employees and mistreat or insult business partners.

While not as aggressive and mean-spirited as his brother Harvey, Bob reportedly compensated for being shy and socially awkward by acting like a bully after coming to prominence with Miramax in the early 1990s.

Once, when a marketing executive showed him a potential trailer for the film “I Got the Hookup” and asked, “What do you think?” Bob Weinstein responded, “I think it f—ing sucks,” and threw the videotape over an employee’s head after which it smashed against a wall, according to a person who witnessed the incident. Mr. Weinstein denied the incident occurred.

At the 2000 premiere of “Scary Movie,” a Dimension executive attempted to introduce his wife to his boss. Bob Weinstein stuck out his arm and shoved the woman back, the former executive recalled, as he made a beeline for stars Marlon and Shawn Wayans and director Keenen Ivory Wayans, with whom he hoped to sign a deal to make more movies. Mr. Weinstein denied that that occurred.

The story included details about the incident that led to a rift between the two families (as Bob has repeatedly said, he hasn’t spoken to his brother much over the past five years). WSJ noted that their families hadn’t spent holidays together, or any time, really, outside of work. It’s also been rumored that Bob was the one who initially pushed the Times to pursue its expose.

In about 2011, after an argument over how to allocate the studio’s resources between their respective movies, Harvey Weinstein punched his brother in the face in front of about a dozen other Weinstein Co. executives, knocking him to the ground, said people who were present. “I’ve been assaulted!” Bob yelled, according to those people. Bob, who was bloodied, wanted to press charges, but was talked out of it, according to a person familiar with the incident.

WSJ seems to think that Bob Weinstein’s track record producing smash hit horror films might be savable, and that when Weinstein Compant sells its assets, Bob might be left to run his Dimension films label as an independent company. But the question now is: Will Bob’s reputation be forever sullied thanks to his association with his brother?

How The Elite Dominate The World – Part 2: 99.9% Of The World Live In A Country With A Central Bank

Authored by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog,

Even though the nations of the world are very deeply divided on almost everything else, somehow virtually all of them have been convinced that central banking is the way to go. 

Today, less than 0.1% of the population of the world lives in a country that does not have a central bank.  Do you think that there is any possible way that this is a coincidence?  And it is also not a coincidence that we are now facing the greatest debt bubble in the history of the world. 

In Part I of this series, I discussed the fact that total global debt has reached 217 trillion dollars.  Once you understand that central banks are designed to create endless debt, and once you understand that 99.9% of the global population lives in a country that has a central bank, then it finally makes sense why we have accumulated so much debt.  The elite of the world use debt as a tool of enslavement, and central banking has allowed them to literally enslave the entire planet.

Some of you may not be familiar with how a “central bank” differs from a normal bank.  The following definition of a “central bank” comes from Wikipedia

A central bank, reserve bank, or monetary authority is an institution that manages a state’s currency, money supply, and interest rates. Central banks also usually oversee the commercial banking system of their respective countries. In contrast to a commercial bank, a central bank possesses a monopoly on increasing the monetary base in the state, and usually also prints the national currency,[1] which usually serves as the state’s legal tender.

Over the past 100 years or so, we have seen central banks steadily be established all over the planet.  At this point, there are just 8 very small nations that still do not have a central bank…

  • -Andorra
  • -Monaco
  • -Nauru
  • -Kiribati
  • -Tuvalu
  • -Palau
  • -Marshall Islands
  • -Federated States of Micronesia

When you add the populations of those 8 nations together, it comes to much less than 0.1% of the global population.

But even though central banking is nearly universal, only a very small fraction of the global population can tell you how money is created.

Do you know where money comes from?

Here in the United States, most people just assume that the federal government creates money.  But that is not true at all.

Many are absolutely shocked when they discover that U.S. currency is actually borrowed into existence.  The federal government gives U.S. Treasury bonds (debt) to the Federal Reserve in exchange for money that the Federal Reserve creates out of thin air.  The Federal Reserve then auctions off those bonds to the highest bidder.

Since the federal government must pay interest on those bonds, the amount of debt that is created in these transactions is actually greater than the amount of money that is created.  But we are told that if we can just circulate the money throughout our economy fast enough and tax it at a high enough rate, then we can eventually pay off the debt.  Of course that never actually happens, and so the federal government always has to go back and borrow even more money.  This is called a debt spiral, and at this point we will never be able to escape it until we do away with this horrible system.

But why does our government (or any government for that matter) have to borrow money that is created by a central bank in the first place?

Why can’t governments just create money themselves?

Oops.  That is the big secret that nobody is supposed to talk about.

Theoretically, the U.S. government doesn’t actually have to borrow a single penny. Instead of borrowing money the Federal Reserve creates out of thin air, the federal government could just create money directly and spend it into circulation.

Yes, this could actually happen.  Back in 1963, President John F. Kennedy signed Executive Order 11110 which authorized the U.S. Treasury to issue debt-free “United States Notes” which were not created by the Federal Reserve.  These debt-free notes began to be issued, and you can still find them for sale on eBay today.  Unfortunately, President Kennedy was assassinated shortly after this executive order was issued, and the notes were not in production for long.

If we had ultimately fully adopted “United States Notes” and had phased out Federal Reserve notes, we would not be 20 trillion dollars in debt today.

The elite of the world love to get national governments deep into debt, because it enables them to enslave entire populations while making an obscene amount of money in the process.

Back in 1913, an insidious plan was rushed through Congress just before Christmas that was based on a blueprint that had been developed by very powerful Wall Street interests.  Author G. Edward Griffin did an extraordinary job of documenting how all of this happened in his book entitled “The Creature from Jekyll Island: A Second Look at the Federal Reserve”.  A central bank was established, and it was purposely designed to create a government debt spiral, and that is precisely what happened.

Since 1913, the size of the national debt has gotten more than 6,000 times larger, and the value of our dollar has declined by more than 98 percent.  Many conservatives are still under the illusion that we could get out of debt someday if we just grow the economy fast enough, but I have shown in another article that we have gotten to the point where this is mathematically impossible.

And most people are also operating under the false assumption that the Federal Reserve is part of the federal government.  But that is not accurate either.  The following comes from one of my previous articles

There is often a lot of confusion about the Federal Reserve, because a lot of people think that it is simply an agency of the federal government. But of course that is not true at all. In fact, as Ron Paul likes to say, the Federal Reserve is about as “federal” as Federal Express is.

 

The Fed is an independent central bank that has even argued in court that it is not an agency of the federal government. Yes, the president appoints the leadership of the Fed, but the Fed and other central banks around the world have always fiercely guarded their “independence”. On the official Fed website, it is admitted that the 12 regional Federal Reserve banks are organized “much like private corporations”, and they very much operate like private entities. They even issue shares of stock to the private banks that own them.

 

In case you were wondering, the federal government has zero shares.

According to the U.S. Constitution, a private central banking cartel should not be issuing our currency.  In Article I, Section 8 of our Constitution, Congress is solely given the authority to “coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures”.

So why in the world has this authority been given to a central bank?

The truth is that we do not need a central bank.

From 1872 to 1913, there was no central bank and no income tax, and it turned out to be the greatest period of economic growth in all of U.S. history.

But since the Fed was established, there have been 18 different recessions or depressions: 1918, 1920, 1923, 1926, 1929, 1937, 1945, 1949, 1953, 1958, 1960, 1969, 1973, 1980, 1981, 1990, 2001, 2008.

Abolishing the Federal Reserve is one of the core issues of my platform, and I have been writing about these things for the last seven years.

As I discussed yesterday, the elite use debt to enslave all of the rest of us, and central banking allows them to literally dominate the entire planet.

Until we abolish this debt-based system and go to a currency that is debt-free, we are never going to permanently solve our very deep long-term economic and financial problems.

But because they are so immensely wealthy, the elite are able to wield extraordinary influence in our society.  They control the mainstream media, our politicians and even global institutions such as the United Nations.  Anyone that would dare to question the validity of the current system is marginalized, and for a long time very few politicians around the world were even willing to speak out against central banking.

However, that is starting to change.  A new generation of leaders is rising up, and they are absolutely determined to break the stranglehold that the elite have on our society.  It won’t be easy, but if we are able to wake enough people up, I believe that we will eventually be able to free ourselves from this insidious system.

Airbus Takes On Boeing By Striking Deal For Bombardier Ownership Stake

Boeing’s battle to crush Bombardier has encountered an unexpected obstacle.

Bloomberg reports that Airbus SE has agreed to acquire a majority stake in Bombardier Inc.’s C Series program, which the Commerce Department slapped with a 300% tariff it ruled in Boeing’s favor in a complaint alleging Bombardier had benefited from anti-competitive government subsidies.

Under the terms of the deal, Airbus won’t pay a dime up front for the C-Series, but will begin assembling the technologically advanced by poor-selling jetliner in the US in what Bloomberg said could be an effort to circumvent the tariffs.  Airbus is adding another final assembly line for the C-Series at its factory in Mobile, Alabama, which will serve US customers and complement production in Canada, according to a company statement late Monday. However, Bloomberg says it’s unclear if the deal will allow the C-Series to avoid the tariffs.

It’s too soon to say if the new Alabama production line would enable the C Series to avoid U.S. tariffs. The duties were applied to C Series planes “regardless of whether they enter the United States fully or partially assembled,” according to a U.S. government fact sheet on the matter. Boeing said Airbus and Bombardier were just trying to get around the restrictions.

As part of the deal, Airbus will assume just over half of the interest in a partnership controlling the C-Series. Bloomberg says the European planemaker’s marketing muscle and production expertise boosts the viability of the all-new aircraft after more than $6 billion in development costs forced Bombardier to rely on government assistance.

The deal also thrusts Airbus into the middle of a trade spat between the two North American aerospace firms. In response to the Commerce Department’s ruling, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau canceled military equipment orders with Boeing, adding that they wouldn’t be reinstated until Boeing drops its complaint against Bombardier.

Boeing filed its complaint in April after Delta Air Lines agreed to buy 75 of the C-Series in a deal worth some $5 billion. Boeing alleged that the planes had been sold for “absurdly low prices.”

The dispute had crossed the Atlantic even before Airbus’s involvement. UK Prime Minister Theresa May said she personally lobbied President Trump to cancel the tariffs. Bombardier has a large factory in Belfast, a constituency that’s important to the conservatives, which employs 4,000 locals.

The Airbus deal is an embarrassing setback for Boeing, one analyst said.

“This is a program that has been waiting for a deus ex machina, and wow, it really got one,” Richard Aboulafia, an aerospace analyst at Teal Group, said in an interview. The deal casts Airbus as a global player while Boeing comes off as “a bit shortsighted and protectionist. It makes Boeing look like they’ve been playing tic tac toe against a chess master.”

Bombardier shares traded in Toronto climbed 15.7% on Tuesday after the deal was announced.

Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau discussed the deal Monday evening in a phone call, according to a statement from Trudeau’s office that provided no details of the conversation.

Canadian Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains said the deal will face a review under the Investment Canada Act. But one unnamed government source told Bloomberg that it’s likely to be approved.

Assuming it is approved, the transaction would be expected to close in the second half of next year, at which point Airbus will own 50.01% of the C Series partnership. Bombardier will hold about 31% and the province of Quebec, which controversially invested $1 billion in the C Series after the cost overruns and delays, will own approximately 19%. Quebec will remain an investor in the C Series until at least 2023, said the province’s economy minister, Dominique Anglade.

Bombardier has rejected Boeing’s complaint, saying Boeing doesn’t have grounds to accuse Bombardier of unfair trade practices because Boeing doesn’t make a mid-sized jet comparable to the C-Series.

Unsurprisingly, Boeing criticized the deal, hinting that it could try to expand its complaint to include Airbus if the company tries to avoid the C-Series sanctions.

“This looks like a questionable deal between two heavily state-subsidized competitors to skirt the recent findings of the U.S. government,” Boeing, the world’s largest aerospace company, said in an emailed statement. “Our position remains that everyone should play by the same rules for free and fair trade to work.”

Of course, Airbus and Boeing are each other’s primary rival. By acquiring the ownership stake in the C-Series, Airbus is killing two birds with one stone. Embarassing and threatening Boeing, while acquiring new technology for cheap that could allow it to cater to a new kind of customer: Chinese airlines looking for more fuel-efficient planes.

George Soros Donates $18 Billion To His ‘Open Society’ Foundation

Hungarian-born billionaire investor George Soros is pledging $18 billion – the bulk of his $26 billion fortune – to his Open Society Foundation, completing the integration of his family office, Soros Fund Management, and the charitable organization that serves as a front for Soros’s globalist agenda.

WSJ reports that the gift has vaulted Open Society to the top ranks of philanthropic organizations. It now appears to be the second largest such organization in the US by assets after the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, based on 2014 figures from the National Philanthropic Trust. Soros, who is 87, shares influence over the investment firm’s strategy with Open Society’s investment committee. Soros serves as the committee’s chairman, but the committee was set up to survive him, he said.

“It’s an ongoing process of migration from a hedge fund toward a pool of capital deployed to support a foundation over the long term,” said Bill Ford, a committee member and the chief executive of General Atlantic LLC, a firm that invests in growth-stage companies.

However, Bloomberg reported that the transfer of funds was authorized to help minimize a tax bill hedge fund managers are facing this year. Money managers have until the end of the year to pay taxes on fees they earned from assets in offshore funds, but had earlier deferred payment on. Many are now turning to charitable donations, including to their own foundations, to help offset the tax burden.

Tax experts have estimated that collectively managers have at least $100 billion offshore, based on tax-advisers’ conversations with clients, brokers and fund-service providers. A New York-based money manager such as Soros could be subject to a top federal income tax rate of 39.6%, not including state and local taxes. When Congress eliminated the tax break in 2008 during the aftermath of the financial crisis, it gave hedge fund managers until Dec. 31, 2017 to bring the cash home and pay the accumulated taxes.

It’s believed that most of Soro’s wealth is tied up with his family office. At the end of 2013, Soros had amassed $13.3 billion in his Soros Fund Management through the use of deferrals, according to Irish regulatory filings. Since it’s unclear how much the fund’s assets have grown since then, it’s difficult to tell what percentage of the fund’s assets the donation represents.
 

Soros founded Open Society in 1993 and has used it to support pro-Clinton groups and Super PACs, as well as leftist groups like Black Lives Matter, and other leftist groups that purportedly have links to local Antifa organizations.

Soros has also given more than $33 million to the Black Lives Matter groups involved in the social unrest in Ferguson and Baltimore.

Sources close to Soros told WSJ that he doesn’t plan to trade the billions that now belong to Open Society. After stepping back from active management in 2000, Soros came out of retirement in 2007 to bet against the housing market, and has had several notable trading successes in recent years – including a profitable bet on S&P 500 puts ahead of the June 2016 Brexit vote. His most recent trade was a bet that stocks would slump following Trump’s election.

Instead, the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed above 23,000 for the first time on Tuesday.

Several states have accused Soros of inappropriately meddling in local affairs. Israel accused the philanthropist billionaire of “continuously undermining Israel’s democratically elected governments.” Meanwhile, Soros’s support for refugees brought him into conflict with Hungarian President Viktor Orban, formerly a friend of the billionaire. Orban has accused Soros of being a political puppet master, and officials in his government have described Soros’s Open Society charities as “political activism disguised as NGO work.”:

Soros, who has lived under both communism and Nazi occupation in Hungary, hoped to foster “open societies” in places where authoritarian governments held power. He named his foundation after a book by the philosopher Karl Popper, one of his teachers at the London School of Economics, who was a notable defender of liberal democracies.

As WSJ explains, Open Society operates through a network of more than 40 foundations and offices in countries from Afghanistan to South Africa and has a broad mandate to act on its founder’s values. OS organizations have funded refugee relief, public-health efforts and programs including a mobile court for gender crimes in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The philanthropy also advocates for rights of the Roma, one of Europe’s largest ethnic minorities.

Responding to rumors that the firm is becoming more risk averse, one of Soros’s portfolio managers told WSJ that the firm would still look for opportunities for profitable macro trades, but that those opportunities would be smaller and more fleeting.

Though Soros has been a vocal opponent of President Donald Trump’s agenda, he once hired Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to run a credit business at Soros.

It’s long been known that most of Soros’s fortune would eventually go to Open Society, though Soros previously funded it with annual donations. He plans to give it most of the rest of his wealth in his lifetime or upon his death, said people familiar with the matter, pushing its assets above $20 billion.

Soros Fund Management’s annual returns have averaged around 11% in the past 10 years, according to a person familiar with the figures, well below the 30% of its early decades.

Soros has about $6 billion in private-equity and related investments, including African cellphone towers and a stake in a restaurant chain called Dinosaur Bar-B-Que. The overseers of this chunk of money report to Open Society’s investment committee.

Soros is best known for building one of the world’s largest fortunes through a series of super-profitable trades. In September 1992, the Bank of England left the European Exchange Rate Mechanism under pressure from speculators, including Soros, who had been aggressively shorting the pound.

The trade netted Soros a profit of $1 billion and earned him a reputation as the man who broke the Bank of England. 

“No Devilishly Effective Plot” – Clinton Chief Strategist Admits “You Can’t Buy The Presidency For $100,000”

Authored by Mark Penn, former chief strategist on Bill Clinton’s 1996 presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton’s 2000 Senate campaign, and Mrs. Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign; via The Wall Street Journal,

Russia didn’t win Trump the White House any more than China re-elected Bill Clinton in 1996.

The fake news about fake news is practically endless. Americans worried about Russia’s influence in the 2016 election have seized on a handful of Facebook ads—as though there weren’t also three 90-minute debates, two televised party conventions, and $2.4 billion spent on last year’s campaign. The danger is that bending facts to fit the Russia story line may nudge Washington into needlessly and recklessly regulating the internet and curtailing basic freedoms.

After an extensive review, Facebook has identified $100,000 of ads that came from accounts associated with Russia. Assume for the sake of argument that Vladimir Putin personally authorized this expenditure. Given its divisive nature, the campaign could be dubbed “From Russia, With Hate”—except it would make for a disappointing James Bond movie.

Analyzing the pattern of expenditures, and doing some back-of-the-envelope math, it’s clear this was no devilishly effective plot. Facebook says 56% of the ads ran after the election, reducing the tally that could have influenced the result to about $44,000. It also turns out the ads were not confined to swing states but also shown in places like New York, California and Texas. Supposing half the ads went to swing states brings the total down to $22,000.

Facebook also counted ads as early as June 2015. Assuming they were evenly spread and we want only those that ran the year of the election, that knocks it down to $13,000. Most of the ads did not solicit support for a candidate and carried messages on issues like racism, immigration and guns. The actual electioneering then amounts to about $6,500.

Now look at the bigger picture.

Every day, Americans see hundreds of ads on TV and radio, in newspapers and magazines, on billboards and smartphones. North Americans post to Facebook something like a billion times a day, and during the election many of those messages were about politics. Facebook typically runs about $40 million worth of advertising a day in North America.

Then consider the scale of American presidential elections.

Hillary Clinton’s total campaign budget, including associated committees, was $1.4 billion. Mr. Trump and his allies had about $1 billion. Even a full $100,000 of Russian ads would have erased just 0.025% of Hillary’s financial advantage. In the last week of the campaign alone, Mrs. Clinton’s super PAC dumped $6 million in ads into Florida, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

I have 40 years of experience in politics, and this Russian ad buy, mostly after the election anyway, simply does not add up to a carefully targeted campaign to move voters. It takes tens of millions of dollars to deliver meaningful messages to the contested portion of the electorate. Converting someone who voted for the other party last time is an enormously difficult task. Swing voters in states like Ohio or Florida are typically barraged with 50% or more of a campaign’s budget. Try watching TV in those states the week before an election and you will see how jammed the airwaves are.

No one wants foreign governments meddling in American elections.

In 1996, the Chinese government had the “China plan” and pumped hundreds of thousands of dollars into Bill Clinton’s re-election campaign. There were congressional investigations, and several fundraisers were prosecuted, but Attorney General Janet Reno rejected calls for an independent counsel. Campaigns tightened up their donor-validation procedures, and life moved on. The same is called for here. Internet companies should improve their screening of electioneering ads, impose clearer standards on all ads, and do a better job weeding out phony accounts.

Millions of taxpayer dollars have probably been spent already poring over that $100,000 of Facebook ads.

Better to keep it all in perspective, as everyone did in 1996.

The only way Russia will get its money’s worth is if Washington overreacts and narrows the very freedoms that make America different in the first place.

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