I’m catching up on the Mueller team leaks to The Times and The Post that Cheryl mentioned last night. Josh Marshall also covered it at TPM. Quoting The Times’ account of the DOJ reaction to the leaks, Marshall highlights the almost superhuman cynicism of the Trump administration hacks — not necessarily Trump himself, who is probably too stupid to fully comprehend the shell game being played here — but the DOJ leadership, including Barr and Rosenstein:
“Mr. Barr and other Justice Department officials believe the special counsel’s investigators fell short of their task by declining to decide whether Mr. Trump illegally obstructed the inquiry.” And why didn’t he release more than his exonerating summary? “According to officials familiar with the attorney general’s thinking, he and his aides limited the details they revealed because they were worried about wading into political territory.”
They were afraid of being political! That’s amazing. And there’s more. “Mr. Barr and his advisers expressed concern that if they included derogatory information about Mr. Trump while clearing him, they would face a storm of criticism like what Mr. Comey endured in the Clinton investigation.”
Since Trump is still leading “Lock Her Up!” chants two-plus years into his presidency, it’s easy for low-info voters to forget that the memo Rosenstein produced as post-hoc justification for firing Comey criticized the FBI director for mishandling the email investigation in a way that was unfair…to Clinton. Of course, Trump confessed the real reason for firing Comey (“this Rusher thing…”) on camera to Lester Holt, but the official explanation for shit-canning Comey is that he sand-bagged Clinton.
And now Barr’s office has doubled-down on that unbelievably cynical justification to explain their rationale for summarily exonerating Trump of obstruction charges without releasing the evidence. Barr doesn’t want to pull a Comey, they’re saying. The fucking balls on these people!
Anyhoo, it’s heartening to see these leaks, which appear to beat back the “total and complete exoneration” lie that Barr has been helping Trump sell since March 24. It’s also encouraging that public opinion of Trump hasn’t moved so far, despite the initial (and idiotic!) mainstream media acceptance of Barr’s summary as dispositive.
Keep on leaking folks.
Keep on leaking until we know everything in the report.
The video from LarryO about the tax returns
Yes yes yes
Just saw the “Fuck ’em” rotating tag; how timely.
They can’t keep it up (no, Donald, you can’t solve this with a little blue pill); it’s now just a matter of who else gets to go to jail. What Barr wants to go to the Grey Bar hotel is beyond me (unless he already has the pardon printed and signed).
Anyone else watch This is Us
My favorite part of the season finale:
I absolutely loved Deja completely gathering up Randall. She was like..I don’t know what’s wrong, but, I don’t care…and, you are NOT messing up our happy home. So, whatever you gotta do to get it right..just get it done. Only Deja could have given Randall that speech, and gotten him to see which way was up.
With all due respect (and the NYT deserves none), Barr is AG explicitly to cover up Trump’s criminality. That is the reason he is there to begin with. Barr imo didn’t give a shit about whether his report wandered into political territory. I say that because his 4 page ‘summary’ was completely a political document blowing smoke up our collective bums.
Anyone watch Masterpiece Theater’s Mrs. Wilson? I really enjoyed it. That story was wild! Can’t wait to see the next episode.
Comey did real damage. What a fucking ego, huh?
All he had to do was follow the rules to the letter but no, dumbass, has to bring his giant self-regard and sanctimony in and fuck everything up. We literally would have been better if James Comey had stopped thinking and just gone on automatic pilot. He has the rules to rely on! They PROTECT him. If he’s questioned he says “here’s the rule- I followed it”. Objective, not subjective.
Read your job description and DO THAT. Don’t invent a new job and then do THAT one poorly! It’s hard enough just to do THE JOB competently and decently. Don’t get creative! No one wants that!
Uh huh ??
Samuel Sinyangwe (@samswey) Tweeted:
South Bend’s first black police chief secretly recorded the other officers saying racist things and confronted them about it and the officers complain to the FBI who investigates and tells Buttigieg. Chief gets demoted and the racist officers get $500k. WTF. https://t.co/9sSdftMfJj https://twitter.com/samswey/status/1113645324206141440?s=17
Now NBC News has the story.
And lookee here –
“Mr. Barr and other Justice Department officials [, who instructed Mr. Mueller that a sitting president may not be indicted by anyone but Congress,] believe the special counsel’s investigators fell short of their task by declining to decide whether Mr. Trump illegally obstructed the inquiry.”
@Cheryl Rofer: So unwitting useful idiots instead of witting traitors.
Part of what Barr is counting on, I believe, is that this now shifts the fight into a lengthy ‘process’ battle over the report itself, which tends to fill the minds of DC reporters and editors, rather than on the likely damning contents.
Journalists won’t be able to help themselves (sadly) and will say shit like “the embattled Mueller report” referring to the fkery around the Barr summary (whitewash), the stalled release, redactions, etc, and all the ill will pundits will seize on the embattled theme to claim the report is tainted.
And a lot of people with motivated reasoning will nod right along. ie the entire GOP senate and most GOP donors.
Barr is unethical slime. And maybe he blundered here. But I’m not so sure.
I think that not even the Trumpites believe anything he says. And, even if the Mueller report says Trump is the favorite Son of Satan, they wouldn’t care. If it burns the libtards, then it’s OK.
@David Anderson: That has been my question all along. I think we still don’t know. It may even be hard to tell when we have the full report. They were so focused on their goals of money and Clinton-hate that when the Russians offered them help, they were very ready to take it. See Don Jr.’s response to the June 9 meeting offer, for example. And then (this is the way recruitment is done) they came to see a common purpose with the Russians and gleefully took them to be friends.
Ultimately, the distinction comes down to a state of mind. This bunch is so greedy and unprincipled that the distinction may not apply.
@rikyrah: From the article:
Ha! That last bit negated any need for sunglasses.
The obvious NON-political proper management answer to this concern is to send that section of the report back to Mueller and his team to make a recommendation.
My guess is the reason for not making a recommendation is clearly spelled out — Longstanding DOJ policy not to indict a sitting president. Can’t wait to see the whole report.
Context from South Bend’s local paper about the police tapes thing, if anyone is interested.
A Ghost To Most
Coercion is not collusion. That’s their story and they are sticking with it.
Time to cue any Nathan Thurm interview.
My link skilz is bad, link went haywire, just pick from many choices on the YouTube.
Folks were like….how come Mueller’s people are leaving…
People…not an accident.
Being no longer employees of the Justice Department means THAT THEY CAN TALK TO WHOMEVER THEY WANT.
They let Barr get out on this branch, and now, they’re going to saw it all off.
Folks, including Barr, don’t get it.
Things have changed since he was last cleaning up GOP Messes and doing GOP coverups.
NOBODY believed his azz going in. He didn’t understand that he had no goddamn credibility.
The MSM, DESPERATE since the beginning of this wretched Administration, has been trying to normalize them. And, were just longing for REGULAR Republicans to attach themselves too…it’s why they wanted Ain’t Shyt Kelly to be their REGULAR Republican.
So, here comes Barr…and, any other time, a muthaphucka who auditioned for the job by admitting that he would commit OBSTRUCTION would be disqualified. But, not with them….they glossed it all over…
And, NOW, they had their REGULAR Republican…so, of course, when Barr attempted his coverup they were only too eager to go along.
But, the entire atmosphere has changed.
Nobody believes anything that comes forth from this Administration, unless you are part of the crazyfication factor.
And, you can’t tell people that they can’t judge until we see the Mueller Report….
AND THEN TRY AND HIDE THE MUELLER REPORT….
And, the polls bear this out. Only the Crazyfication Factor is satisfied with Barr’s attempted coverup. Folks want to know what’s in that report. Period.
So, I don’t give a phuck who in the MSM winds up looking that the idiots that they were….and, they should reminded of it ALWAYS.
Fuck you, Fishmouth, your’re part of the problem. And I guess tweets are now limited to 40 characters? Because I can’t imagine any other reason why you might have
redactedleft out the word “unredacted,” as in “unredacted Mueller report.”
Fuck you, Fishmouth.
His job, the reason he was appointed was to protect Trump. Nothing more, nothing less. And there really isn’t any way to do that, especially any acceptable way. Plus he’s a republican through and through. He did his best, as he sees it. Which is a sad commentary upon the state of our nation for sure.
In the long run this will come out, notably if we survive as a country.
@Ruckus: Gosh, but, even unethical slime has feelings. I mean, yeah, oozy, disgusting feelings… but they’re feelings.
@rikyrah: Your comments are a must read. Every day. Every post.
John Dean (@JohnWDean) Tweeted:
Increasingly, it is appearing that AG Barr has falsely framed the narrative of Mueller’s Rpt and Trump is probably up to his neck in both collusion and obstruction, but b/c he is POTUS was cut a lot of slack? Sooner or later the truth will surface. https://t.co/KXtwnadCyO https://twitter.com/JohnWDean/status/1113684062940434432?s=17
In the sense that they want the same racism, lies, warfare, and cruelty, but they want to go back to when people pretended that was wisdom and maturity. They loved Kelly. He could torture immigrants while making a sad face about it.
One thing I’ve already done today that y’all might consider, maybe even especially if you live in a red district: The House voted almost unanimously to make the Mueller report public. Let those fuckers know you expect them to follow through on that. I called the Trump-humping tool who is my House rep to let his office know I haven’t forgotten that vote.
Yes, it’s great. Too bad I read the spoiler-filled NYT review.
The fact that DOJ policy precludes indicting a sitting President is one of the reasons I have argued from the get-go that handling this as a criminal matter was wrongheaded.
The other reasons are that the the process is too time consuming, the standard of Beyond a Reasonable Doubt, in a matter such as this, is too high and, in the end, it is damn difficult to get the information generated by the grand jury to the public.
@Cheryl Rofer: Jared Kushner, in December 2016, wanted to go into the Russian Embassy to talk over the embassy’s secure link to government officials in Russia about something he really, really didn’t want American government officials in the Obama Administration to know about.
They may be witless, but they weren’t unwitting. They knew what they were doing was conspiring to subvert the US government. Now, since they obviously think that they’re entitled to the US government, they may not see that as anything treasonous or illegal, but being stupid isn’t a defense.
Most of the news I read of people leaving the Mueller investigation was just that, they were leaving the investigation and going back their regular jobs within the DOJ. I certainly haven’t read every single report so there may be a few who did in fact leave the DoJ but I have yet to see one.
eta argh… All of the news I have read….
Me and my aversion to making exclusionary statements. Again, I may very well have missed something.
Well, how the hell else will they be able to grift anything? The “private sector” caught on to those corrupt mofos years ago, so they needed to go someplace where they can make the rules — or at least break as many rules as they can, in pursuit of “a few bucks.”
They have so much gall it must be filling their insides with stones up to their tongues.
eta And to hear Giulliani righteously insulting the leakers
I’m reserving some of my outrage for Rosenstein, who I think should be highlighted just as much as Barr for his role in protecting Trump throughout the process. The guy issued a second appointment letter to Mueller which we would never have heard of if part of it was not released as evidence in the Manafort case. Of course most of this document is redacted but we get the charming statement at the beginning:
This gives me hope that the full unredacted report will make it at least as far as Congress. I believe the fight will ultimately come down to the courts. Yes, the Supreme Court has a Republican-appointed majority, but the house vote shows that Republicans seem to want to protect their institutional prerogatives. This outlook seems likely to sway, at a minimum, CJ Roberts.
Then there’s also the precedent set during Watergate that Congress’s subpoenas for information should be adhered to.
This goes back to what Kay has posted about before: administrations typically build up public trust, or at least attempt to. When your campaign was built on lies, when the first press release is shouting lies (LARGEST INAUGURATION CROWD, EVER! *hides in bushes*), and literally everything out of your mouth is lies, then you having nothing to fall back on. People won’t be willing to give you the benefit of the doubt. You can’t bank on that public goodwill. Every. Day. Trumpov, and his admin, takes a blow torch to public goodwill. And he’ll never recover. There’s nothing he can do that will get him there. He will with the 27% but they’re beyond help, and we’ve known that for a long time now.
They have so much gall it must be filling their insides with stones up to their tongues.
All the better for the purposes of spitting bile at your opponents.
I caught a bit of reporting, have no idea from where and how accurate, that Comey has been having some sleepless nights worrying he may have screwed Clinton’s campaign. If true, he should have realized this at the time.
Mike in NC
80% of the mainstream media is actively working to reelect the Fat Bastard. The other 20% is still undecided. Talk about Our Failed Media Experiment…
Legitimate sources are illegal.
@Cheryl Rofer: We still prosecute the “unwitting” dupes when they create enough damage. That will not provide them any defense.
@germy: @rikyrah: And this is why the FT prefix will always be applicable.
I guess people who’ve adopted baldfaced lies as best practice don’t even remember when they dismantled the inner alarm that goes off for hypocrisy.
@Betty Cracker: Context? Who needs that when there are wild accusations to be flung?
The Very Reverend Crimson Fire of Compassion
@rikyrah: I know, right? I’ve taught for 25 years, and I’ve had a few “Dejas” in my time, fiercely intelligent and ferociously fearless young women who could enlighten the adults around them, if any of those adults had enough sense to listen. Students like her are a reason I still love teaching.
@tobie: Agreed that Rosenstein deserves a heaping helping of the opprobrium being heaped on Barr — he’s up to his neck in this cover-up too. I don’t think there’s any conflict between Rosenstein’s alleged angst about his Comey memo being used to fire Comey, his suggestion that someone wear a wire to record Trump’s lunatic ravings, etc., and his willingness to help Barr mitigate the damage from the report. I bet most of Trump’s enablers, including McConnell, McCarthy, etc., have similar stories. But when the shit hits the fan, they’re Republican functionaries first, patriots second — every time.
Finally, some decency from rethugs?
Juicers who watch MSNBC are familiar with two frequent contributors, Jill Wine-Banks and Nick Ackerman. They were both part of the Watergate investigative team and have described the Saturday nigh massacre in detail. Including the fact that almost all the team members took hard copy information from the investigation home with them, thinking the investigation had effectively been killed. What are the odds that multiple members of the Mueller investigative team have thumb drives with the entire unredacted report and supporting documents squirreled away somewhere?
Barr’s rosy report spin frustrates Mueller investigators: NYT
Rachel Maddow shares new reporting from the New York Times that some of Robert Mueller’s investigators have expressed frustration that Attorney General William Barr has mischaracterized their work to present it as more flattering to Donald Trump than it is. Neal Katyal, former acting-U.S. solicitor general, joins for analysis.
@germy: Yep, the DOJ has released a statement denying that the summary is a summary:
@Betty Cracker: The moment the scales fell from my eyes was when Rosenstein used the power of his office to task 93 DOJ prosecutors with scouring Kavanaugh’s records to prevent as much as possible from ever being released to the public. This man likes secrecy when it serves the interests of the Grand Old Plutocrats.
They live in a hard bubble of their own superiority and ego reminding me of Karl Rove sneering at reality-based thinking.
Shazam! opens in theaters today. Reviews sound good.
We got Doom Patrol on TV in Canada two days ago, the first two episodes. A comic book that’s older than the X-men with Timothy Dalton and Brendan Fraser. We don’t get DC Universe here, but Netflix in Canada was kind enough to run Titans on Netflix once all episodes were released. There’s a Doom Patrol episode of Titans for anyone that wants to check them out without much commitment.
All in all, a good time to be a DC fan.
@germy: It’s richly rotted: as he attacks journalists covering Russia, Greenwald keeps repeating “unnamed sources.”
I don’t like planted sources either. Although unnamed sources in the first story out (NYT) were also used to inject Barr’s excuses asap.
It’s funny how Barr’s office made sure to offer ‘two sources’ this time. Since 2-3 sources used to be a standard for credibility, but the WH and their NYT operatives mostly ignore that standard. The thinking this time seems to be, you’d better be super credible when you’re offering super obvious lies.
@plato: I’ll believe that when I see it. My Trump-humping House rep voted yay on that bill, then he crowed on Twitter about the Barr non-summary being a complete vindication of Trump. If they think they can get away with it politically, they’ll keep right on protecting Trump. Our job as constituents of shitty GOP reps is to ensure a political cost for a reversal.
@Doug R: I have complete faith in Matt Reeves. I think his version of The Batman will be great. A focus on the world’s greatest detective angle with film noir style.
@rikyrah: Am watching it for Iain Glen, but yes, it’s also a terrific story!
GG tweeted up a flurry of bad takes around the latest leaks, and then retreated to silence. I assume he’s figuring out some new anti-anti-trump logic to explore.
I’ve been assuming from the outset that Mueller was writing a report for Congress, not for the DOJ. This whole situation arose because Trump fired the head of the FBI to protect himself. Mueller knows that Sessions is an idiot, and if Sessions was replaced, that he’d be replaced by a hack. If his report was going to amount to anything, it would have to be read by Congress, particularly a Democratic Congress. He would know their statutory authority to request the full report.
If Mueller recommended charges against Trump, there would be no point given DOJ policy, so his better option is to hand Congress a framework for impeachment. The guy isn’t an idiot. He’s been an atty general. He was head of the FBI. He knows how to thread a political/legal needle, and he’s doing it.
Barr denying that the shit sandwich he served up was a summary is the biggest tell since Trump confessed to Lester Holt.
It appears that Barr might have forgotten the Iron Rule that everything Trump touches dies.
@bemused: Let’s not let the NYTimes off the hook too much on that one.
Ways and Means chair directs IRS to turn over Trump tax returns
Rachel Maddow reports on the increased scrutiny of Donald Trump’s finances since Democrats took control of the House, and reviews the history of the tax law that compels the IRS to provide requested tax returns of any American, including the president, for Congressional oversight.
Oh fer fucks sake, Tim Ryan of Ohio is running for President. He will certainly outdo Buttigieg in the WWC bullshit.
Oh fer fuck’s sake.
Tim Ryan has announced he is running for President.
He will certainly best Buttigieg for pandering to the WWC.
BWA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA
@Martin: I hope you’re right. When the MSM seemed to accept Barr’s non-summary as the Gospel of Exoneration and no push-back from the Mueller team materialized, I assumed they were fine with the white wash too. These leaks make it clear that at least some of them, possibly including Mueller himself, aren’t fine with that.
@rikyrah: Their only “concern” was the fear that “who shapes the public impression of the Mueller report” might not be the fucking New York Times** & their pigsty of Trump-ass-kissing-leg-humping urinalists like MAGAt Horribleman…
**aka Vichy Times, aka Herrenvölkischer Beobachter, aka FTFNYT, aka…
OT–Tim Ryan has announced his bid for the Presidency, and Eric Swalwell is expected to follow. Don’t any of these folks like their job? I mean I’d be overjoyed if Adam Schiff or Chris Murphy declared but the two seem to enjoy their work and are intent on ensuring that Congress still has people in it who know how to get stuff done.
ETA: I see rikyrah and Immanentize got there first in 68 and 69. Apologies for not scrolling through the whole thread first.
He hasn’t learned anything then. It wasn’t hard. It wasn’t a personal moral crisis. The whole point of the rules, the process, is so that I don’t have to depend on Comey’s lousy judgment.
He could have relied on the rule too. It would have protected him from accusations of bias. But, no. He’s much “smarter” than that. He needs to stop agonizing and step back. He inserted himself. He should at the very least STOP. Do NOTHING. Please, for the love of God, stop helping us.
@PlayDough: Let’s do the math: 435 Reps – 3 vacant (NC-3, NC-9, PA-12) – 420 voting “aye” – 4 voting “present” = 8 Reps unaccounted for. Curious as to who & why.
@Aleta: Check your email!
@Kay: What is Barr’s job in this case? Not to protect Liar in Chief, but to protect the Rule of law? Protect citizens from the predation of this admin?
@Kay: All I can say about that is of you are going to go outside your job you sure as shit better be right. Comey doesn’t matter anymore but man he pisses me off.
Barr of course is doing exactly what he was hired to do. He deserves no respect for this and only contempt.
I don’t think Comey understands any of it. He doesn’t understand the thinking behind the rules of the system he’s worked in his whole life. He doesn’t get to opine. That’s not allowed. It might be better for him personally! NOT permitted. He just has to smile and take the hit, and hope he’ll be vindicated by the process.
YOU are his client. The public. He didn’t serve you well, and he didn’t serve you well because he put his puffed-up sense of himself as a moral leader FIRST. It’s amusing, right? Because he’s egotistical enough to believe that anyone fucking gives a shit about his reputation or was even aware of it! No one in the public does. They do now! But it’s bad- he now has a bad reputation.
His job is to make his decision and take whatever reputational or social hit comes, silently and stoically, because he’s supposed to put the client first. Anyone can trash him! He can’t defend. Them’s the rules.
@debit: ooo OK !! Going now !
@tobie: What is Tim Ryan known for, apart from being the guy Pelosi curb-stomped in the most lady-like fashion ever? I don’t get that at all. Swalwell may be trying to raise his profile for a senate seat in case Harris is elected president. I’d rather Schiff and Murphy stay put too — they’re both effective, as you pointed out.
Roll call vote here (scroll down a bit to the breakout including who did not vote).
Political reporters should be thanking Pelosi. WTF would the write about if she wasn’t doing their due diligence?
They dropped their demands for the tax returns when Trump shouted at them. Now Nancy has to go get them, along with the Mueller report and every other fucking thing. Oh, well. Better late than never, I guess. Maybe we could get the information BEFORE the election next time? “Timely” is pretty important.
Sister Golden Bear
@Betty Cracker: Timing matters.
House deadline to release the report: April 2
Warning shots across the bow fired from Team Mueller: April 3
Not a coincidence.
Obama’s own goal appointments of Republicans to responsible positions is one of his largest flaws.
I hope it becomes a lesson.
The senate’s handling of appointments in 2009-10 also.
Tax law compels IRS to give Trump taxes to Ways and Means chair
Rep. Judy Chu of the House Ways and Means Committee, talks with Rachel Maddow about the precedent for the IRS providing tax returns of presidents to the chairman of the House Ways and Means committee in accordance with longstanding tax law, and why Donald Trump does not have a say in the matter.
@Sister Golden Bear: wasting time by not immediately demanding the report
via subpeona – priceless.
I asked Anne Laurie (twice) for your e-mail so I could send a check, but all she sent me was the PayPal address. Sorry, I don’t do PayPal.
tee hee hee hee hee hee
And here I thought I might be the last holdout. Solidarność!
West of the Rockies
Remember that sometimes they run fully expecting to lose in an effort to upgrade their image for future endeavors.
West of the Rockies
Oh, that pesky context…
Is Mueller personally upset that many liberals and Democrats believe he dropped the ball? We don’t know and it doesn’t matter. HE doesn’t matter. How does he seem to know that and James Comey does not know it?
James Comey would have been savaged on Fox News. Who cares? Why is that the public’s problem?
I don’t buy the unwitting pawns of Russia bit. Both campaigns and the top positions on Congress were warned at Russia was looking to interfere in the US elections. Shitstains people and his party still went full steam ahead utilizing Russian help and money. They are stupid, but they welcomed illicit help after being warned law enforcement was looking into it. Party of traitors.
@Aleta: My Kitty Sense is tingling!
@zhena gogolia: Oh, no worries. I commented in the post that we were fine for funds but it was pretty far down the front page by then. Thank you so much for the offer, but I think we have more than enough. I said it before, but you guys are amazing.
@Betty Cracker: Tim Ryan is known for giving a real stem winder on the idiocy of the second Iraqi invasion. That’s how I know who he is. It was such a scathing speech that it was used in some campaign ads by anti-war groups against GWB’s second term.
Oh, okay. You are the amazing one! Aleta’s going to love that kitty.
I assumed that stepping up publicly and saying the AG lied about his report, or revealing any of itself, was wildly unethical and against procedure. That interpretation would mean that Barr put Mueller, a man who has defined his role in this situation by going exactly by the book, in a difficult position. The system he is operating by is being used against him. It’s highly unlikely he is surprised, and unlikely he’s unprepared, but I would expect something more roundabout than stepping up and saying Barr lied. Getting a House committee to ask him under oath if Barr lied might be an option, or turning a blind eye as someone leaked a copy of the report, or having increasingly firm warnings given to Barr that the report will come out if he tries a blatant coverup. Something along those lines. Only he would know exactly what his options and limits are.
You always zero in on the plain and simple facts with common sense reasoning. Much of msm should take pointers from you.
So much fun. So many balls up in the air to keep track of.
Seems like the Rusher thing will take care of itself. Some leaks presage a flood. Barr’s finger in the dike won’t do it, and if he’s smart, he’ll put it back in his pocket.
Repeated lieaks on Jared Kushner’s security clearance strongly suggest Saudi Arabia has also invested a very large amount in the Trumpster administration, rivaling that of Russia. Though, probably not as involved in violation of US campaign finance laws.
And I don’t know if Mueller report is right that Trumpster campaign didn’t collaborate. I think a good chance that Trupsters too incompetent to conspire, collaborate, or whatever the technical legal words are, and Russia just took half assed disorganized signalling and ran with it. But, how some campaign finance laws were NOT violated by the Trumpster campaign is just beyond me. But IANAL.
Dorothy A. Winsor
@rikyrah: Where do people like Ryan get this insane level of self confidence? How do they do that?
@Dorothy A. Winsor:
Lord, grant me the confidence of a mediocre White man….
From the paper:
Perhaps that’s not all the story, but that is – unsatisfactory justification. If he thought Boykins had violated just a *technicality* of federal law (presumably privacy issues) he should have let the Feds enforce the excessive and/or inappropriate sanctions. Also, why would him demoting Boykins stop a federal criminal investigation?
@Frankensteinbeck: SGB at #84 made a good point — the leaks happened the day after the House deadline for releasing the report passed. I understand the need to go by procedure — Kay points out how Comey’s failure to do so was so catastrophic, which I agree with 100%, so it doesn’t make sense to demand adherence to procedure by Comey on the one hand and blame Mueller for failing to deviate from procedure on the other. But then there’s the possibility that the “total and complete exoneration” lie becomes the baked-in narrative. Someone on the Mueller team saw that and decided to deviate from procedure.
The number of third countries and third party actors that run our government right now is astounding! I want the House Intelligence committee to call up George Nader for an open hearing. And I would like some enterprising newspaper to look at how these same third countries are going after people identified by Trump as enemies. I get that it would seem like an inside job if the Washington Post investigated Bezos’s claim that Saudia Arabia got access to his phone but another paper could pick up the slack. FWIW–I’m convinced that some of the torrid shit coming out about and/or being thrown at Democratic candidates is also being fueled by foreign actors.
@rikyrah: Shit I am a mediocre white man and I wished I had that confidence.
@Fair Economist: Maybe someone who has followed the story more closely could answer those questions, but my understanding is that Buttigieg’s office refused to release the tapes because releasing them would be a violation of the wiretapping law. Maybe the feds didn’t really have a case against Boykins without the tapes, which were the property of the city?
Buttigieg says he demoted Boykins not only because that was a way to get the feds to back off from the charges they signaled they were going to file against Boykins but because Boykins concealed the fact that he’d become a target of a federal investigation from Buttigieg. The (allegedly) racist cops got $500K settlements from the city because Boykins (allegedly) taped them illegally, not because Buttigieg wanted to reward racist cops for being racists.
I’m not saying the way he handled the incident reflects well on Buttigieg. But it’s a lot more complicated than the folks hyping it on Twitter make it out to be. That’s the point of my link at #17.
@Betty Cracker: Yes, it is….but it’s still problematic to the black community. They have concerns they rightly raise, and Buttigieg has to address them…and the answers in his book really aren’t enough.
J R in WV
When things are said in public, which to me includes any conversation among police officers at work, recording that should never be regarded as illegal. How else is a police officer to prove other cops are dirty? Does one need a warrant to spontaneously record illegal activity now?
Seems like a bunch of racists covering for other racists to me, but I’m just an old fat white guy. What do I know?
Pretty sure WV is a single party state for recording audio, although the Rs in control of state government will no doubt fix that ASAP once they notice that vulnerability.
That’s how former R Gov. Arch A Moore Jr, father of Shelly Moore Capito, Sen (R – Wells Fargo) was indicted and convicted of soliciting political bribes, and served time in a federal prison camp in ALABAMA, doing yard work in an orange jumpsuit around a military base adjacent to the prison camp. HAHA, but of course, he was still rich when he got out, on ill-gotten gains. His minion was convinced to wear a wire when the payments were negotiated and transacted.
@gwangung: Fair point, and I hope Buttigieg does address it. His record should be scrutinized by voters like any other candidate’s. Maybe the way people raise legitimate issues for politicians to address these days is by posting a bunch of misleading and inflammatory shit on Twitter. That doesn’t seem like a great way to get your issues heard to me — it mimics the Bernie Bro / MAGA chud social media chaos campaign of 2016, IMO. But maybe that’s just the way it works now.
James E Powell
I have never doubted that Comey knew he was screwing the Clinton campaign. He was just laboring under the same delusion as the entire Village – and a large percentage of us, including me: none of us believed that this country was stupid, hateful, and bigoted enough to put Trump in the White House.
Comey knew he was harming Clinton; it’s why he did it. His other explanations are all post-hoc justifications for what he realized was a disastrous outcome of his own hatred. It is likely he will never admit it in public, but he knows the truth. And I don’t believe a word about him having sleepless nights. That’s just him circulating bullshit to make himself look better now that he realizes every decent person thinks he’s a complete asshole for putting Trump in the White House. If he is remembered at all in our history, that will be the only thing he will be remembered for.
Every day I wish he would crawl in a goddamn hole and never come out.
I haven’t seen anybody commenting on the remarkable fact that Mueller’s team is leaking anything. Two years they lead a massive investigation from the highest levels of the administration to the lowest levels of the Russian mafia – while refusing to leak anything about anyone. Then their report is in Barr’s hands for just a couple of weeks and they feel they need to start leaking against him. It’s almost as if Barr is acting like such a shit bird that he’s achieved the impossible: getting Mueller’s team to go the route of leaking information.
@Sister Golden Bear: Exactly. Plus, it give Barr and others time to implicate themselves. House Judiciary will have a blast with that testimony.
@rikyrah: Stories like this about Mayor Pete are really bad for him. It’s odd / amateur / sloppy that his team don’t seem to have noticed. On one hand it’s a typical weakness of a coalition of minority communities (I’m more repressed than you. No, I’m more repressed!) It’s easy for the right / white supremacists to exploit, but Pete should already be aware that it doesn’t take much to turn “not another white man” into a permanent brand. Ignoring it makes him look tone deaf at best and racist at worst. He had an overflow crowd at Northeastern that was reportedly very diverse. It could inflict long term damage to intersectionality efforts if he doesn’t pay attention.
I hope it’s not too late. But it may have been too late before he started.
James E. Powell
Until recently Ryan was an anti choice D. He’s from the armpit of America, one of the densest concentrations of economic anxiety and “economic anxiety” if you know what I mean and I’m sure that you do.
I assume he’s running to expand his name ID, maybe to set up a run for governor.
@Betty Cracker: I wouldn’t waste me time deep diving into the weeds on this, since it came out Buttigeig said the magic clueless words “All lives matter” in 2015. Something I pilloried Bernie for.
The other thing bothering me about Mayo Pete is, yes we know he has great facility with languages; but that was some bad Italian, I am told. Why the fan posts like parents showing off their amazing son’s achievements – completely uncritically. *sigh*
It’s all starting to remind me of Wilmer stans.
I wanted to edit my comment it says I don’t have permission. The fan posts not referencing anyone on here, but on twitter
@Mike in NC: Only because they are paid to do so.
@smintheus: Is low rent Elton John double in trouble?
@VeniceRiley: He has picked a fan following among the women of Balloon Juice. They wil attack you like protective mama bears for one cross word about good mayor PB.
ETA: About the languages, PB knows. I am fluent in 3 languages, that means I can, read, write and understand them. If I add languages that I can understand well and speak a few sentences of, I could easily inflate that number to 6 or 7. I am beginning to wonder about that statistic.
The year is 2019. Barr is a Republican. This should explain virtually all of his behavior. It also means he’s unfit to serve in any government position, especially one demanding absolute integrity.
@VeniceRiley: Hillary Clinton said “all lives matter” in 2015 too — a lot of clueless but well-meaning white folks did until they had the sense to listen to people of color who set them straight about how offensive it is in the context of BLM.
@schrodingers_cat: To repeat what I said at #113 and pretty much every other place I’ve commented on this issue, criticizing Buttigieg or any other Democrat for their words, deeds or records is perfectly fair, but doing it with misleading smears isn’t.
@Betty Cracker: @Betty Cracker: Thanks for this. The lack of context (FBI probe of new police chief) about Pete’s record is a consistent theme. Cherry picked slams reek of dirty tricks. And Mayor Pete’s team needs to get ahead of this. The next wave of attacks will come from black influencers. Then the LGBTQ community will be hurt and angry. It’s too easy to drive a wedge between marginalized communities. There’s a lot of talk about intersectionality but less actual effort making the slow, time consuming process a priority.
It’s deeply saddening. The early Gay Liberation leaders cut their chops in the Civil Rights and Women’s Liberation movements. We worked for the dignity of people who had little and deserved much more. We were barely tolerated, see Bayard Rustin and the disgust of Betty Friedan. 50 years after Stonewall we’re still easily divided. This is not meant to diminish the racism and misogyny of many white gay men. I experienced it when I dated black men- micro aggressions, etc. It’s just so discouraging to wish for utopia and see it sink beneath the waves so many times.
@Dan B: I’m feeling pretty discouraged about 2020 for the reason you mentioned — it’s so easy to drive a wedge between marginalized communities. It’s not hard to get non-marginalized Democrats to turn on each other either. I’m sure every foreign and domestic trolling operation on the planet understands this and is ready to spring into action, if they haven’t already waded into the fray. Worse, non-trolls seem to be adopting those same tactics as a way to hammer opponents of their favorite candidates. Maybe that’s just how it works now. God help us if so.
It didn’t used to work that way on Balloon Juice, not at this level, anyway, and it is exceedingly discouraging to see otherwise reasonable people here behaving like this — as if we have never been exposed to the concept of ratfucking or disinformation campaigns. We are not stupid but we need to quit acting like it, or we are screwed in 2020.
And not just 2020 – we will be screwed for decades, perhaps permanently, all because otherwise reasonable people are feeling bitter toward candidates who raised more money or got more attention or are the gender. Geez, people, we have to be smarter than this. Do some of you think your candidates are so week that they can’t win the nomination fair and square, without the other candidates being misrepresented?
@schrodingers_cat: Hai ragione. Prova a parlare italiano durante la sua conferenza stampa, ma lui non è molto capace. Chissà quale lingue affato conosce.
@WaterGirl: I don’t have a candidate yet. Just because I am not all that impressed with PB doesn’t mean I am influenced by Russians or whomever. I have watched 2 interviews with PB one on Snooze Hour, where he spoke like the reincarnation of David Broder, totally selling himself to the totebagger audience and one with Colbert, where he was all with it, hip and cool. I am just not feeling the love that you all are. If he wins the nomination I will vote for him. I don’t find him objectionable like I find BS. But he is not my first choice. I thought the primaries were for vetting the candidates. This constant tone policing is annoying to say the least.
@smintheus: सच कहा आपने, मै हिन्दीमे बात कर सकती हूँ मगर प्रेस कॉनफेरेन्स करना इतना आसान नहीं होगा. Since that’s my third language its difficult to think on my feet, answering difficult and tricky questions.
@Betty Cracker: The problem is that the context from a South Bend black person’s perspective looks something like “adhere blindly to the rule of law even when it means supporting continuing racial injustices and criminal activities by taxpayer funded peace officers.” The first black police chief of South Bend is demoted by Buttigieg for illegally recording racist rants and conversations outlining criminal activities by white police officers. The white police officers in question receive taxpayer-funded damages for being illegally recorded, keep their jobs and get to continue racist and criminal activities outlined in recordings. A judge tried to decide this March whether the tapes could be released and a jury trial may hinge on whether the police officers could have known that their conversations would be recorded.
On that, we agree!
At the same time, we can’t fall for Republican talking points, otherwise it’s clear that we haven’t learned anything from what happened with Shirley (I can’t recall her last name) being fired before all the information was in. And let’s not forget what happened with Acorn.
Attacking Democratic candidates during the primary only damages whoever is our candidate in the general.
@WaterGirl: Did you read my comment at all? My assessment of PB is based on watching his interviews not by “falling for Republican/ Russian” whatever talking points. His PBS interview that I watched was way before he started attracting media buzz and became a media darling.That’s the one in which he was spouting the centrist claptrap. I was not impressed then and I continue to be unimpressed.
@schrodingers_cat: True. And if you can’t speak a language well enough to communicate in it at a press conference, then of course you don’t make a show for the cameras of doing so. I don’t know whether Buttigieg himself has claimed that he’s fluent in Italian, but obviously he’s not. He probably can order food and respond to basic questions, not much more.
@schrodingers_cat: I myself am worried that 2020 could be a rerun of 1976, when an obscure “centrist” candidate outlasted a large field of much more impressive candidates – the strongest of whom fought each other to a standstill – by being all things to all people. Carter was a mediocre nominee in almost every respect, but boy did he play the aw shucks card well.
That is how that could be read but wasn’t, as I bet you know, how it was intended.
Of course I hope all of them have feelings, so that when they get caught and jailed and their lives ruined, like they want to ruin the lives of everyone not them, that they get to feel the full weight of the tons of shit that buries them. After all that’s all they have ever produced is tons of shit. It should be used to bury them.
I’d bet Comey did realize it at the time, he just didn’t think it would do what it did, which was push the crazy just a bit farther from reality.
And now that probably no one wants anything to do with his dumb ass, he probably feels contrition is his best bet at not being shunned like a leper. It doesn’t seem to be working. Poor, poor, pitiful dumbass Comey.