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Making Sense of the Sexual Predator Epidemic

November 30, 2017

Image result for free images matt lauer touching woman

The dominoes started toppling slowly: comic genius and father-figure Bill Cosby — long pause — followed by Fox News stalwarts Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly. Then, with the coming of fall, the tumbling dominoes began to pick up speed: Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Louis CK, Senate candidate (and alleged underage girl-chaser) Roy Moore, Al Franken, Charlie Rose — even, for God’s sake, that big-hearted nonagenarian ex-president, Bush the Elder. (Not prudent, George.) And those are just the most famous among a growing roster of prominent political and media figures who stand accused of sexual misbehavior today.

Franken’s offense appears to have been little more than a schoolboy prank with a free-spirited female colleague in the company of their show-business peers; Bush’s was most likely a combination of wheelchair-bound frustration, misplaced hands and creeping senility. The others were considerably more offensive: rape and other forms of sex under duress, lewd texting, forcing unwilling females to observe naked man-parts behind closed doors. There’s no excusing that kind of abuse, especially when it becomes chronic.

But here’s where we moderates need to exercise our wisdom in the midst of public hysteria: not all sexual offenses are created equal. They belong on a spectrum that ranges from staring at a woman’s cleavage and inadvertently touching bare skin to the more lascivious and predatory forms of abuse mentioned above.

Case in point: this past Wednesday, the news broke that Today host Matt Lauer and public radio legend Garrison Keillor had been fired by their respective networks for improper sexual behavior. Let’s compare and contrast the plights of the two newly unemployed men.

The casually married Lauer (he and his wife lead essentially separate lives) was supposed to have accosted a female NBC colleague during the 2014 Winter Olympics at Sochi and continued the relationship back in New York. (If his advances were offensive, I wondered, why did the “relationship” survive the return trip to Rockefeller Center?) But soon the full picture emerged, and it wasn’t pretty: we were looking at a preening sexual bully who seemed to be enamored of his own irresistible chick-magnet appeal, whether his victims found him appealing or not. You’d think a man who makes upward of $20 million a year would be a little more careful about retaining his livelihood.

Garrison Keillor, on the other hand, is an overgrown Nordic elf — a scruffy old scribe with a resonant voice and a genius for storytelling. Much like his legendary Norwegian bachelor farmers, he claims to be socially backward and physically standoffish — perhaps because he’s reputed to be somewhere at the high-functioning end of the autism scale — or possibly because he was raised Lutheran.

Image result for garrison keillor images

One woman — a friend of Keillor’s, no less — recently stepped forward with an accusation. Minnesota Public Radio, his longtime employer, was vague about the alleged “improper behavior,” but Keillor insisted that he was simply trying to console his distressed friend. He reached around her back to comfort her, he tells us, and his hand slipped inside her shirt to touch BARE SKIN. She became uncomfortable; he apologized and assumed that would be the end of it. After all, he and the woman continued to be friends until her lawyers called.

So after nearly half a century as a public radio legend and arguable national treasure, good old Garrison was sacked. Yes, he had already retired from his iconic Prairie Home Companion radio show, but here’s the worst of it: Minnesota Public Radio is severing all ties with Keillor — dropping his daily Writer’s Almanac feature, canceling reruns of his vintage Prairie Home Companion shows (never again will we hear that incomparably orotund voice!) and even changing the name of the show to obliterate all traces of Garrisonian influence. Out, damned spot!

In short, total erasure. A lifetime of wise, witty and often hilarious wordsmithing over the airwaves — expunged just like that, over a single accusation that may or may not have any merit.

Did the radio network weigh his words against hers? No, the accusation was enough. Were there any witnesses? None to speak of. Might her memory of the incident have been warped by the passage of time? It’s happened before, but it didn’t matter. Will more sordid details emerge? It’s always possible, but I’m not holding my breath. Touching bare skin without permission was enough to bring down a broadcasting giant.

It’s pretty clear that “she said” counts more than “he said” — as perhaps it should in cases of sexual misbehavior. Short of DNA evidence or an incriminating video, a court of law would have a hard time determining whether an alleged sexual offense took place as described by the plaintiff — but that doesn’t mean all (or even most) accused men should be let off the hook. Still, it boggles the mind — my mind, anyway — that a minor miscue merits the same punishment as serial sexual harassment: i.e., destruction of career.

I can recall several times I’ve zeroed in on a female acquaintance for a quick social kiss — and pecked her on the neck instead of the cheek… or wrapped my hand around her hip instead of her back. Should I face lawsuits and disgrace (not that I have anything to lose professionally these days) because of my inadvertent fumbling?

When we start dating a woman, will we have to sign a contract, as a friend suggested with tongue in cheek, that the relationship is consensual — and back it up on our smartphones? If a woman wears a low-cut dress and our eyes linger on her shapely bosom a half-second too long, can we be accused of sexual harassment? Will male executives no longer be allowed to date their secretaries because of the “power imbalance”? Where does it stop? Where’s the common sense?

Let’s face it: women have always been drawn to powerful, high-status men. Not all women, but enough for the generalization to hold. And powerful, high-status men are famous for their hyperactive libidos. Not all of them, again, but enough to make us wonder about the link between sex and power.

Do oversexed men naturally gravitate to positions of power, or does the power give their libidos an explosive jolt of Red Bull? My suspicion is that it works both ways. Oversexed men most likely find their libidinous propensities enhanced once they taste the magic elixir of power.

The trouble with powerful men is that they often abuse the women who find them irresistible — and even those who don’t. It’s not easy to overcome a million years of hominid biology, but you’d think any man capable of surviving 16 years of schooling could exercise enough self-restraint to tame his Neanderthal urges — at least in the office. No woman should have to put out for a man she doesn’t love in order to keep her job or win a well-deserved promotion. Simple enough, right?

But let’s think about those socially backward, introspective men like Garrison Keillor — or me, for that matter — or most of my male friends — who could be made to suffer the same consequences as the serial abusers because of a single misinterpreted gesture — or simply through guilt by reason of maleness. If Mister Rogers were still around, I could imagine him being sacked for patting a female hand a little too tenderly.

Meanwhile, a powerful man who confessed to numerous instances of unilateral sexual misbehavior occupies the White House. But so did Clinton. So did JFK and LBJ. What else is new?

Those unrestrained alpha males aren’t just making life difficult for the women they abuse; they’re making it difficult for the rest of us men. When our every move is suspect, how do we survive in an office environment, flirt with potential mates or get a date?

Maybe the alphas have overstayed their welcome. Patriarchy is passé, after all. Women outnumber men four-to-three among recent American college graduates; they represent the future. I just hope that when they think about us men, they remember how to differentiate between the pigs and the princes.

 

Rick Bayan is founder-editor of The New Moderate and author of Lifestyles of the Doomed, available wherever e-books are sold.

 

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717 Comments leave one →
  1. Dennis Gauss permalink
    November 30, 2017 7:44 pm

    Power corrupts etc etc……You have to have a type A personality to aspire to these kinds of jobs in the first place,meaning you have to have be self opinionated and pushy from birth.This coupled with our male dominated society where these types of public personality, attract the viewers/listeners and make big bucks for their employers,ensures that their sexual excesses attract the “Nudge,nudge,wink,wink” type of reaction.How many times have we heard later that millions of $ have been spent by these corporations covering up past offences ? If I was a woman faced with this type of harassment I would be intimidated regarding my future and I fully understand why these atrocities have not been reported in the past.
    It is now in the open and these same corporations cannot ignore the facts any more !! The ones I am most concerned about are those girls and women who do not have the ambitions to climb the corporate ladder but just want to earn a living in peace and security but suffer the same humilities. They will not attract the publicity of the high flyers but this happens every day in workplaces throughout the world.There must be a grass roots complaint system that will help the average working girl/woman !!

  2. Pat Riot permalink
    November 30, 2017 8:59 pm

    “Not all sexual offenses are created equal”

    “Out, damned spot!”

    Hi Rick! This is an important topic regarding our civilization. Yes this topic is important, but the amount of media coverage the individual offenses are receiving is disgusting, ridiculous, sickening, preposterous, diabolical, and warped. Your treatment of this topic is much more measured and moderate than mine is going to be (I think the hysteria and insanity of most of this whole situation is another symptom of our warped, insulated, and assanine PC culture) but I want to see if I can post as I don’t remember my damn password.

  3. dduck12 permalink
    November 30, 2017 9:34 pm

    Thanks Rick, for the new topic and your well reasoned post.

  4. Pat Riot permalink
    November 30, 2017 9:44 pm

    Of course, like many aspects of our modern culture, there are a whole bunch of factors involved, and a big tangle of “historical threads” leading up to it, but let me focus on two–one more general and one more specific…

    The general one:
    The further we humans get removed from something that used to be referred to as “living close to the land,” i.e. “real life,” i.e. reality, and the more insulated and removed we become (fantasy world, see Plato’s Cave, fast forward to millions of highly specialized idiots forming ideas about life from images zooming past their eyeballs everyday at 30 frames per second…), then the more warped and bizarre our ideas become, including our ideas of what it means to be human. It used to be, for thousands of years, that many civilized folks thought of humans as flawed creatures who hopefully learned from mistakes, who sometimes needed to be forgiven, and who sometimes needed to pay retribution in money or punishment, but many offenses did not equate with a complete and total labelling and condemnation of the person. If someone oversteps their bounds, then let the offended party demand an apology, or take it to court, civil court or criminal court, and let the parties move on in private, without this childish, hen clucking, gossip hysteria over touching! Now, Cosby drugging people or other aggressive attacks, that’s criminal. As Rick was saying, not all offenses are equal. But this “he touched me” shit–shut the he’ll up. That’s news????

    The specific thread is warped feminism manifesting itself via a liberal-progressive dominated mass media that is far more disgusting than men trying to get jiggy with it.

    Oh I wasn’t nearly as venomous as I wanted to be. Crimes are one thing. Defend your space. Prosecute if violated. The namby-pamby tattle-taling gossip going on in the media these days—we need that big electronic disruption thing to take out all non essential communication. Maybe a plague.

    • Jay permalink
      November 30, 2017 10:19 pm

      I agree overall with what you said, Pat, with the exception of faulting the Liberal press for it, unless you mean ALL the press by definition is liberal – because FOX and it’s affiliates, and all of Murdocks Conservative newspapers have been OVERFLOWING with those sexual misconduct stories (except for Conservative instances, of course).

    • dhlii permalink
      December 1, 2017 4:43 am

      Pat;

      Very little of what I am reading is “Oh, he touched me”.!

      A great deal of this is sexual assault – i.e. crimes.
      Most of the remainder is Sexual Harrasment.

      Distinctions are absolutely critically important.

      If force is involved – even small amounts, then we are talking crimes,
      where possible those should be prosecuted and those prosecutions should be adjudicated by jurries using the beyond a reasonable doubt standard.

      Many of these allegations would not survive that.

      Those allegatations that do not involve force are not govenrments business.

      But that does NOT mean they are not our business.

      Just as we can choose not to attend professional football games because players are kneeling for the national anthem. We can make the same kind of choices about what entertainment and media we watch.

      Jobs are not a right. Especially not when you are making 10’s of millions a year.

      If Fox or NBC or MPR want to can you because you have been a bit gropy.
      That is fine with me.

      I am glad that Fox canned OReilly – before all this firestorm.
      While they should not have allowed Ailes and Oreilly to do the things they did,
      Still the Murdock family acted to clean house – before everyone else.

      I would also suggest regarding some of these other instances where we have heard little – beyond minor allegations and a quick termination, There is likely ALOT more that we do not know.

      Either the businesses in question ALREADY wanted to can these guys for other reasons and the first hint of sexual misconduct just was sufficient to motivate them to act,

      OR the business was well aware of the problem – probably much more so than the public and acted quickly BEFORE we find out how much more than a little slap and tickle was going on.

      Finally, sorry, no I do not have any sympathy here.

      We are not discussing dorky little 19 year olds with sucky interpersonally skills bumbling the process of learning how to relate as an adult.

      These are all affluent, powerful, capable, wealthy people.

      Everyone of them could have easily afforded 2500/night escorts if they needed to go outside the norms a bit.

      This is not acceptable – particularly from those in these roles.

      I did not vote for Trump, for many reasons, but the Access Hollywood tape was enough.
      I did not vote for Clinton – because in addition to having abysmal policies and being a crook, she enables exactly this kind of conduct in Bill, and she then maliciously targets his victims.

      Trump has been elected and as best as we seem to know, he is keeping his pants up, and his hands where they belong.
      He is the president now, and though I did not vote for him and do not like him much as a person, I can still hope for his and our success – and be happy because though he might be a lousy person, he seems to be a pretty good president.

  5. dhlii permalink
    November 30, 2017 9:49 pm

    Good post.

    I would note:

    In many of these instances there could well be lots of backstory we do not know.

    Rose and Lauer were canned because aside from the allegations that were made public their employer was well aware of much more misconduct – and likely at risk fr liability.

    I do not know about Garrison Keillor – sorry, I have always found him annoying and his humour flat. But alot of people like him.

    Maybe MPR know more than we do. There is also a tiny bit of the “cosby factor” – though cosby’s offenses are really creepy. Regardless, the “coby factor” whihc I also think was in play with Rose is that Keillor and Rose have an image is moral examples.

    The consequences of minor moral failure by those who set themselves up as moral examples is far greater than the consequences for people who make no claims to high morality.

    Trump has had a lifelong reputation as a skirt chaser. None of the allegations against Trump are surprising. Further Trump’s conduct was aggressive, but at the same time – he did seem to take “no” for an answer. In otherwords he did things seeking a sexual/romantic relationship that I think are unacceptable, but backed off when they failed.

    Many of these people did not.

    I am more disturbed by Franken that you. Franken’s conduct is NOT close to consensual.
    It is also not in the context or persuing a relationship.

    i.e. this is not Bad dating skills. Moore as an example seems to have the most repugnant dating skills of any human I am aware of, an an unnatural attraction to very young women.
    But he eventually married a women much younger than he, and from what I can tell has been faithful to her. This does NOT diminish the HUGE yuk factor in Moore’s conduct which seems to either be or dance very near rape.

    Regardless, I am addressing a point. There is a big difference between crappy dating skills and the worst of these people – where it is not about relationships, it is probably not about sex – it is about power and about demeaning the women involved.

    One of my problems with Franken is that though his actual misconduct is small, I do not read him as merely awkward at sexual relationships. I read him more as a mild predator.

    Finally – I have no sympathy if people lose their jobs – regardless of whether they are “awkward daters” or “sexual predators”. Nor do I think we need to engage in deep introspection regarding the veracity of the claims. A job is not a right. You can get canned for no reason at all.
    You want control of your own employment – work for yourself.
    When you F’up there – you still have a job, you just do not get paid.

    I have much more concern when government is involved.

    In my community over the past several decades we have had a spate of criminal prosecutions for “sex crimes” that are mostly yuky consentual sex – police officers, teachers, and the like.

    Today it is nearly impossible to fire a teacher of a police officer.

    It is easier to convict them of a crime.

    We have that backwards. Teachers who sleep with students – should be canned. PERIOD.
    But most should not got to jail. The same with police.

    When we prosecute people for crimes – including “sex crimes” we need to return to “the reasonable doubt standard” – we are far from that for everything not just sex crimes.
    We are far from “better 10 guilty go free than on innocent man be jailed.”

    The Obama Title IX mess was similarly disturbing.
    While a college is not government – this was government driven action.

    Anyway, I do not think this is easy. and I do not think we are ever going to get it perfect.
    But overall I think the current explosion of revelations and dire consequences are good.

    Ailes is dead, OReilly is gone – Fox initially looked bad, but now appears way ahead of the curve.
    If we clean out the perves in the media and hollywood – fine with me.

    I would like to see the same regarding politics – but that is harder.

    I would be happy to see Moore, lose, Franken resign, Conyers, gone. Hillary and Bill in Jail and someone besides Trump as president
    But politics is harder. It is more disconnected from public ire.

    I understand that some of the allegations are false or the conduct is minor.
    But unless we are in court – I am not concerned.
    I can have sympathy for someone who lost their job over a false allegation.
    but the standard outside the law is not “reasonable doubt”.

    Finally, I would qualify this by noting I am pretty much the antiTrump.

    I had two dates in my entire life before dating my wife. It took 6 months from our first date until we held hands. I have never had “romantic” contact with any other woman in my life.

    I am an uber geek. I am the geek, that geeks come to with geek problems.

    I understand that everyone else is not the same. And I do grasp that forming relationships have alot of blundering that should not be criminalized.

    But I do think that we can get this all right – not meaning conduct ourselves perfectly, but roughly work out the right consequences for conduct.

    Miscommunications that do not involve force, do not belong in government,
    Those that do need to meet that reasonable doubt standard.

    As things are at the moment – I think we need even more housecleaning – even if that means a few false allegations are treated seriously – out side the law.

    I also think – with some reason that many women are pretty angry about this.
    Both my daughter and my wife have come forward with events I was not aware of that are just not the world I want, and they are not “bad dating”.

    I think that if democrats had put forth a candidate who was not a pervert or a pervert enabler in 2016 women would have destroyed Trump – But Clinton was not that candidate, nor was groper Biden, or rape fantasies Sanders. What surprises me is that so many of our public figures are so revolting.

    In the 2017 elections in PA, it seemed that things did not go party line.
    They went mostly down gender lines. Women were willing across the ballot.

    Something we should think about maybe.

  6. Jay permalink
    November 30, 2017 10:10 pm

    “Those unrestrained alpha males aren’t just making life difficult for the women they abuse; they’re making it difficult for the rest of us men. When our every move is suspect, how do we survive in an office environment, flirt with potential mates or get a date?”

    Rick, my advice is to AVOID US woman like the plague, and look elsewhere for female companionship.

    My current recommendation is South Korean women, who in general actually respect men (maleness) and treat them accordingly with respect.

    And in that light I highly recommend watching “The Stranger” on Netflix – a fascinating crime-prosecutor-political corruption show (subtitled in English). It will help put in cultural perspective US messed up male-female relationships through the interactions of the characters, who work together in highly charged situations, but are not tangled up in American male female dysfunction. And as it’s 16 episodes long, it will keep you from inadvertant miscalculations with women in bars. 😏

  7. December 1, 2017 12:00 am

    Rick ….“When our every move is suspect, how do we survive in an office environment, flirt with potential mates or get a date?”

    You use common sense!!!!!!!!!!
    1. You keep your hands to yourself in ALL INSTANCES in the workplace or work related activities including office parties. The only touching is hand shakes when that is appropriate.
    2. You avoid “flirting”. How do you know how each woman will view that?
    3. You avoid off colored jokes in mixed company.
    4. If your looking for a ” good time” you find it somewhere other than work!
    5. If your looking for a long term relationship, you find it somewhere other than employees that work for you.

    Yes, if your cruising the office for a date, your cruising for trouble. Find somewhere else to share your “Johnson”. If you dont and get accused, well stupid cant be cured. Ignorance is not knowing and that can be fixed. Stupid is knowing and still doing it.

    But back to the political issue, we were first to know of inappropriate sexual activity when Bill Clinton was still in office. All others before him came to light years after they had left office. The press knew of JFK liaisons and kept them quite. But with Clinton, we brushed it off. Pelosi brushed off Conyers until the women put so much heat on her she had to reverse course. Voters brushed aside Trumps issues and elected him. Moore is now leading again in Alabama in many polls. Voters may say we dont care once again.

    Maybe all the “me too” movement will convince men to keep their hands to themselves and give women no reason not to file a complaint if they dont. And any politician should be treated like any government employee accused of inappropriate activity. In many cases, they are suspended until the investigation is complete. If found to have sufficient evidence for court actions, they stay suspended unil the case is completed.

    • Pat Riot permalink
      December 1, 2017 10:04 am

      Ron, I think your thoughts on this are going completely in the wrong direction, south instead of north, upside down. #2 avoid flirting? Maybe you are old or that part of you is shut off, valves closed. Your list reminds me of people trying to survive in a communist or NazI regime: be careful what you say, be careful who you share thoughts with, play it safe at all times…good God man they got to you. You need an intervention! I could agree with your #5 regarding employees. One should wait until they resign and they find another job before inviting them to dinner! What? Sex is inappropriate now?

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 1, 2017 10:28 am

        Ron, sorry about the closed valve comment. I wasn’t angrily attacking you. I am poking jovially as I am won’t to do. I am more or less flirting with you in a philosophical, non-sexual way!

        Everyone, I flirt just about CONSTANTLY w most women at work, as my father taught me by example, and they flirt back, and it’s fun and gets non-PC humans through their work days and life with a sense of humor, and once in awhile a hot liaison to grease the gears between consenting adults!

      • dhlii permalink
        December 1, 2017 12:36 pm

        Pat;

        I would presume that you do not use force in any of this ?

        If not it is not the business of the government.

        I would also presume that whatever your interactions with others – if they are not reciprocated, you do not continue ?

        Further, your employer is free to have whatever rules they wish regarding this, and to enforce them or not as they please.

        Beyond that, I am most definitely NOT like you. But that is OK, people are different.

        I do not care about your conduct in the workplace – if those you are engaging find it acceptable.
        If those who wish to engage in flirting (or more) do so freely – and those who do not are free to not participate.

        Because people are different, because one size does not fit all, because even the same person does not feel or behave the same throughout their lives,
        It is hard to impossible to have rules that will work to cover everything.

        But we can all accept that force is wrong, and its use can be punished by government.

        Beyond that – particularly at work, our risks are being rejected or getting fired.
        I do not have a problem with that.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 1, 2017 12:25 pm

        Pat;

        I agree, and this is also part of why government should mostly not be involved.

        When we are going to use force, we need clear bright lines.
        We do not take away some’s liberty or property without being pretty certain that we are right.

        But everything in the world does not have clarity.

        The initial parts of relationships are often messy and fumbling. There can be confusion about what each party wants.

        There are some instances where we can and should dictate that no relationships should occur.

        Teachers should not have relationships with students as an example.

        There are lots of instances where they are less wise – workplace relationships are problematic.
        I can understand why and employer would not want sex and romance to complicate business.

        Regardless, people are going to connect with each other romantically and sexually.

        You can not reduce their opportunties to do so to online apps and bars.

        Some people are going to attempt to form relationships at work.

        Further every effort to form a relationship is not reciprocal.
        So miscommunications and mistakes are going to occur.

        I think we can manage that. We will get it wrong possibly often, but we do not need laws dictating when and how to attempt to form relationships.

        I would note that most of the stuff that is reaching the news is NOT really about forming relationships.

        The actions of Weinstein, Spacey, OReilly, Lauer, …. are way past bad dating technique.
        They are about abusing the power you have over others.

        In the real wolrd – if we keep government out – except where actual force is used,
        I think we can sort things out ourselves just fine.

        Not 100% perfect all the time, but as best as can actually be done.

        I do not think it is difficult to tell the difference between awkward attempts at workplace romance and the misconduct of Weinstein.
        And if we leave government out of it – the consequences of being wrong are someone loses a job that was not something they had a right to in the first place.

  8. Pat Riot permalink
    December 1, 2017 10:38 am

    And if they don’t play back, ‘ya stop.

    Did y’all know that one of the secrets to America’s innovative and creative spirit during the 19th and 20th centuries was that AmerI can children learned to PLAY in creative and innovative ways, then carried that into engineering, the arts, etc.???

    Many Chinese don’t have a sense of humor. They follow the norms. They conform. They don’t make waves. They”ll produce crap on an assembly line and not speak up. And Americans had to go over to manage those obedient workers during the early stages of their new industrialization. Let’s not take the Grand Experiment of our Founding Fathers in the direction of being afraid to speak to people. F that.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 1, 2017 12:45 pm

      One of the most serious problems with Ameirican young adults today is that they DO NOT have the oportunity for “free play” that their predecessors did.

      It is incredibly important – for more than just innovation.

      There are several prominent psychologists that are noting that the mess we have in our colleges at the moment is specifically the consequence of those students never having the opportunity for free play as kids.

      They are used to a world where and authority is present and defines the rules and protects them.

      They are not used to standing up for themselves.

      BTW, though this manifests itself badly on campus today – the same problem has existed for much longer.

      Much of the “regulation” we have today, is merely people who are unwilling to engage their neighbor directly, resolving their issues with them through government.

      Because we can not ask our neighbor to mow their grass – we pass laws.

      Many of us do not know and have never talked with the people we live next to.
      But we are perfectly content to call the police or the municiplay authorities if something they do on their own property annoy’s us

      We have lost or abandoned our capability of working together without some authority.

      In doing so we have empowered the annoying busybodies who are good at getting others to make life unpleasant for their neighbors.

  9. Pat Riot permalink
    December 1, 2017 11:52 am

    Jay,
    No, Fox News doesn’t get a pass from me. They do their version of “gawking at the scenes of accidents” of life, like media whores, though I will admit that I am far more akin to “Fox News types,” men and women, than the liberal-progressive thought police at CNN, et al, who in their extreme or stereotypical form are FAR more PC, anal, and insulated from human life than most real people on planet Earth. Yes those squeamish “coastal elites” who talk about animal rights while they eat their chicken sandwiches on gluten-free rolls, haha, and looking down their noses at deplorable as if they too (the coastal elites and their PC minions) were not going to die and rot in the earth like everybody else! Oh, ridiculous human beings and their narrow perspectives! Oh these people with their abstract ideas–these people who have never been truly cold or hungry or too far from a refrigerator their entire insulated lives! Yes Bill Burr is correct–we need a plague.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 1, 2017 12:51 pm

      The media is biased. Get over it.

      Fox, CNN, what does it matter.

      You can prefer whichever you please.

      I would hope you are wise enough to grasp that each reflects a particular viewpoint.
      But if you want to beleive Fax is biblically correct or CNN is the voice of truth, you are free to live in self deception.

      I am more interested in assuring that all voices can be heard, and that we have more voices,

      We are well past the 60’s when our view of the world wa delivered nightly by Cronkite, or Huntley Brinkley.

      We are closer to the world of our founders where pampleteers hawked myriads of competing views.

  10. Anonymous permalink
    December 1, 2017 12:07 pm

    Rick – Pigs and Princes, I heard one person state it this way: “It is the 99% of men that give the 1% a bad reputation”.

    Dave- 2500 a night escorts- If a business owner who had been paying 2500 per night, wanted to save money and add extra bedroom duties to a manager that he found attractive with the condition of her losing her job if she declined, you might find his conduct reprehensible, but you would not be in favor of the government imposing any sanctions on his quid pro quo negotiating with his employee, correct? No force, no foul, right?

    Pat: I am more in favor of Ron P’s position than yours, with the qualifier that I am speaking in general terms about workplace environment. There may be exceptions in the workplace environment, but generally speaking a place of work, and work time, is for just that. There is Tinder, clubs, and all sorts of other times and locations to pursue other activities.
    Mike Hatcher

    • Pat Riot permalink
      December 1, 2017 12:40 pm

      Hi Mike!

      Well I’m taking the “loosen up people” and the “mind your own beeswax” approach on this one, to swing the pendulum the other way a bit. Of course there are plenty of inappropriate behaviors in the workplace, and it depends largely on the context, situation, and people involved.

      My ire with this matter begins the other day, early in the morning hearing Matt Lauer’s name on my car radio, then I work a gal day and hear his name again at lunchtime, then so work 2nd hand me of the day and on,my ride home it is ” Omg Matt Lauer dud you hear?” and then in the news feeds on my laptop when I get home. This is surely a symptom of a voyeuristic gossip-addicted decaying culture. This is news? How are our bridges doing? Any new young engineers find new employment? Any small to mid-size companies buy some equipment (capital investments)? Any helpful medical research going on? Any news we can use?

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 1, 2017 12:43 pm

        Can someone please murder the guy who wrote the code for auto correct?

        “Half day” not “gal day”

        Jeese Louise!

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 1, 2017 1:18 pm

        Hey Pat! That work gal, I believe her name is Day. I think she may have reported you to H.R. Lol. Mike Hatcher

    • dhlii permalink
      December 1, 2017 1:17 pm

      Mike

      “Dave- 2500 a night escorts- If a business owner who had been paying 2500 per night, wanted to save money and add extra bedroom duties to a manager that he found attractive with the condition of her losing her job if she declined, you might find his conduct reprehensible, but you would not be in favor of the government imposing any sanctions on his quid pro quo negotiating with his employee, correct? No force, no foul, right?”

      There is a difference between believing that conduct is reprehensible and has no place in business as an example, and making it illegal.

      Regarding your example:

      1). The employee has the right to decide what they will do with their own body. They do not however have a right to a job. So there are no rights involved here.

      What is the business owner decided to save some money and demanded that an employee clean out the septic tank ? How is that different ? It is a disgusting job. You can decide you will not take money to do it, or that you will. Still your choice.
      You remain free.

      2). In your example you specifically framed this as a business owner. Those are actually quite rare. I beleive the US has just under 40M businesses – a large portion of those are corporations or partnerships. What I am looking at is it is extremely rare than a single individual has total control of a business and is NOT answerable to anything but the market.

      A CEO is answerable to a board. Boards are answerable to shareholders.

      I doubt the shareholders of Ford would find it acceptable that a CEO was using other employees as prositutes.

      Unless you are the sole owner of the business – this would be theft – you are converting some part of the business to personal wealth – that would be stealing from the other owners or shareholders.
      It also would be tax evasion. You pay prostitutes with your income. You pay employees with the business revenue – even if you have the consent of the owners, you are transfering business revenue to personal income without taxing it.

      I have only addressed a small portion of the numbers of ways in which attempting to convert employees to prostitutes is more than reprehensible, but in reality actually going to trigger a rights conflict – because even though the employee may not have the right to a job, it is quite rare for the person doing the asking to have the actual right inside the bussiness to whatever services they want from other employees.

      I have made that too complex. What I am trying to say is that nearly all of the time, when someone can direct another in business, they are also ANSWERABLE to another superior.

      Finally in those rare instances in business where you are an actual sole proprieter, and you are not engaged in tax evasion, you are still answerable to the public.

      I have been trying to make a related point in a series of other posts.

      Everything that is illegal is (or should be) immoral.
      BUT everything that is immoral should not be illegal.

      At the farthest extremes – rape is both illegal and immoral.
      Giving to charity – helping your neighbor is regarded as supremely moral, and many of us feel that failing to do so is not moral – but failing to engage in charity is not illegal.

      If a condition of your job – is something you do not like – you are free to quit.

      Judgement or the “morality” and consequences of that condition, is outside the government.
      But it is not beyond the reach of humans to “regulate” through the market.

  11. December 1, 2017 2:06 pm

    Pat . ” I flirt just about CONSTANTLY w most women at work, as my father taught me by example, and they flirt back, and it’s fun and gets non-PC humans through their work days and life with a sense of humor, and once in awhile a hot liaison to grease the gears between consenting adults!”

    There might be a difference between your definition of flirting and mine. To me, there are two actions very closely related. Teasing ( poking fun and having a good amusing non romantic interaction) and flirting, the same interaction with a romantic interest. A number of definitions online of a flirt “is a person who habitually behaves in a way designed to be attracting, interesting and engaging to someone in whom they have a romantic interest. ”

    So my comment above (#2) is based on that definition. I supervised 22 women directly and worked with hundreds more ( hospitals are about 85% female staffed) and the teasing was present daily. Flirting was not as I had no romantic interest in these friends and employees.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 1, 2017 3:44 pm

      Ron

      I likely have a different perspective on much of this because of my personal history.

      Both sides of my family have owned small businesses 3 generations back.

      Near my earliest memories are taking out the trash for my fathers architectural business.
      My parents business was in the home – that is sort of a misnomer as by 2001, the “home” was 11,000 sq ft., 50 people worked there – at all hours, and my mother had finally at 70 gotten tired of not having any privacy and bought her own home 1/4 mile away – which my father was welcome in when he was not working.

      My parents had employees from almost as early as I can remember.

      The employees had jobs. Whatever they would not do – that is what my parents and the rest fo the family had to do. Take out the trash, clean the toilets.

      In the world I grew up in – the owner of a business made the important choices, and could not get fired. But they also got all the shit jobs no one else would do, and if there was no money – not only didn’t they get paid, but we actually had to put PERSONAL money back into the business to pay employees and keep the doors open.

      My parents had to entertain for business. As a consequence I and my siblings had to cook, and serve dinners for 10 people. I never worked as a waiter in school, but I know as well as the waiters in a fine restraunt all the etiquette of serving. And if we screwed up there would be hell to pay afterwards – my parents did not entertain because they liked it, they did so because the business required it.

      Further, circumstances always arose that things needed to be done, and no employee would do them – If a storm knocked trees into the parking lot that needed to be cleared immediately – my siblings and I were out cutting and dragging.

      When the septic lines got clogged and it needed fixed immediately – I was cleaning grease out of sewer pipes.

      As a consequence I have never thought of some task as outside the scope of what one does.
      You do whatever it takes.

      As I developed more management responsibility, the employees I valued the most were those who did not say no to anything that needed to be done, or better still anticipated what needed done. One office manager that worked for me was incredible. She had half a dozen bookkeepers and secretaries working for her. But if there was a business meeting she made sure that coffee was provided to all the guests. No one had to ask her. Sometimes she got one of her subordinates to do it. but always it got done – even if she had to do it herself.

      Today, I work primarily as a consultant. If you hire me and instead of writing Linux device drivers, you want me to clean toilets and are prepared to pay my rates – I will probably do it.

      At the same time I have potential clients call all the time. I am constantly offered double, even tripple my normal rate – if I will work in Seattle, or San Francisco, or LA for 12 months.

      I say no, and most of the time do not get the work.

      That is the actual real world. As an employer you are free to ask for almost anything you want.
      As an employee you are free to ask for almost anything you want.
      And each can say no to the other.

      I would not personally agree to sex as a condition of employment.
      But if the toilets needed cleaned before an very important business meeting and that was the most important use of my time at that moment – I would scrub the toilets.

      I also think that it would be very beneficial for all of us, for atleast some part of our lives, to become self employed. It will change your perspective on the world.

      The first big change would be noting that there is no difference between self employed – and employed by someone else – except that those employed by others are deluded into beleiving they have some kind of guarantee or right to their job that they do not.

      We all trade the value we produce for the money to buy the value we want in return.
      Employee’s employer’s owner’s bosses, it is all the same.

      Your boss trades the money they are alllowed to dispense for the value they hope you create.
      You trade the value you create, for the money to buy elsewhere the things you want.

      Both sides of the trade are the same. Every buyer is a sellor, every sellor is a buyer.

      You can think of employment as buying money with labor, or buying labor with money.

      Just as your employer can make demands you do not wish to meet, you can make demands they do not wish to meet. Both of you are equally free to walk away.

  12. December 1, 2017 2:22 pm

    Dave Mike stated “If a business owner who had been paying 2500 per night, wanted to save money and add extra bedroom duties to a manager that he found attractive with the condition of her losing her job if she declined, you might find his conduct reprehensible, but you would not be in favor of the government imposing any sanctions on his quid pro quo negotiating with his employee, correct? No force, no foul, right”

    You came back with “The employee has the right to decide what they will do with their own body. They do not however have a right to a job. So there are no rights involved here…….You can decide you will not take money to do it, or that you will. Still your choice.”

    ARE YOU REALLY REALLY saying a business owner has a right to demand a female employee perform “additional bedroom duties” and the only recourse an employee has is quiting?

    If so you take libertarianism to the extreme radical edge.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 1, 2017 3:11 pm

      “ARE YOU REALLY REALLY saying a business owner has a right to demand a female employee perform “additional bedroom duties” and the only recourse an employee has is quiting?

      If so you take libertarianism to the extreme radical edge.”

      Everyone has plenty of recourse regarding things they do not like.

      What I am saying is that no right is being violated, and no force is involved.

      I am also saying there is no LOGICAL difference between being asked for sex, and being asked to clean out a septic tank as part of a job.

      For many of us our job is covered by an employment contract.
      Your employer is not free to breach it without consequence.

      Additionally, demands by a boss that offend you – might well offend your bosses, superiors, shareholders and customers.

      Ailes, OReily, Lauer – and even Weinstein who litterally owned a significant part of the company, have suffered very severe consequences.

      I would note that any other position not only limits the employer – but also the employee.

      Are YOU saying that next aspiring Angelina Jolie can not approach some Harvey Weinstein and say – I will give you a Blow Job if you give me the part ?

      Finally I would note with respect to jobs – and I keep saying this and you all keep ignoring it.

      THERE IS NO RIGHT TO A JOB.

      Absent a contract, in much of the country and nearly all the world you can be fired from any job at any time for no reason at all.

      This is one of the reasons that employers increasing will not provide references for employees.
      They confirm employment that is it.

      Why ? Because while you can terminate someone for no reason. We have very stupid laws that say you can not terminate someone for a variety of reasons.

      If I employ you I can fire you because I got up on the wrong side of the bed.
      But I can not fire you because you are gay, overweight, female, black, jewish, or old.

      Because I can terminate you for no reason, but I can not terminate you for certain reasons, it is never a good idea to explain why someone is terminated.

      If you have been in a position where you have had to hire and fire – you probably have been lectured about this – possibly by lawyers.

      I have been sued because I terminated an employee and they claimed it was because of their age, religion, ….. It was because business was declining and someone had to go and he was the most expendable. It was not something I wanted to do.

      We settled the suit – for $2500 – not because I did anything wrong, but because the Administrative Law Judge said openly – the employee is going to lose, but it will take another 2 days of hearings, and that would have cost more than $2500 in legal fees and other costs.

      Regardless, the point still is that a job is not YOURS, you do not own it, you have no rights in it, beyond any contract you have.

      You have no more claim on a job that you want than your neighbors house if you want to buy it from them. Your wanting a job, does not create a right in it. Absent a contract, your getting hired does nto create a right to the job.

      Just as you are free to leave at anytime for any reason, so is your employer.

      Further the entire process is reversable.

      Just as you can go to your boss and say “I want a raise or I quit”, you could in theory go to your boss and say – “give me a Blow Job or I quit”.

      Both demands are risks – but you are free to make them. Just as your employer is free to make demands on you – and you are free to say “no”

      As to recorse – I think that those people Weinstein sexually harrased found recourse.
      I think that those who did not want to give Lauer, Rose, Ailes, OReily, Keillor what they wanted ultimately found recourse.

      Much of what you are calling “extreme libertarian” – is really just how things actually are.

      OReilly did not go to jail for his conduct. He used his power in the workplace, and ultimately found that Murdock had MORE power.

      This is little different from the NFL players kneeling during the anthem.

      No legitimate law is being broken, no force is being used.

      The players are free to kneel.
      Their coaches and team owners (depending on contracts) are free to fire them.
      Fans are free to support the players – or as in this case to OPPOSE the players.

      Everyone has plenty of recourse.

      The one nit I have added is that it is actually extremely rare for your boss to be the 100% owner of the business.

      Unless the person making the demand, is also the complete owner of the business – then they are “stealing” from the actual owners. They are using their role as a boss to PERSONALLY benefit at the expense of the business.

  13. Jay permalink
    December 1, 2017 3:16 pm

    These are the charges of misconduct against Matt Lauer.
    The women making the charges are doing so anonymously, refusing to identify themselves for fear of ‘industry reprisals.’

    “the co-host of NBC’s “Today,” Matt Lauer once gave a colleague a sex toy as a present. It included an explicit note about how he wanted to use it on her, which left her mortified.

    On another day, he summoned a different female employee to his office, and then dropped his pants, showing her his penis. After the employee declined to do anything, visibly shaken, he reprimanded her for not engaging in a sexual act.

    He would sometimes quiz female producers about who they’d slept with, offering to trade names. And he loved to engage in a crass quiz game with men and women in the office: “f—, marry, or kill,” in which he would identify the female co-hosts that he’d most like to sleep with.”

    Huummm.
    Inquiring minds want to know more.
    The crass quiz game: who wanted to do what to who?
    The sex toy, was it mechanical, inflatable, or electronic?
    What stage of excitement was the exposed penis in?

    Send followup info to me at PruientVoyeur.Com 😎🤩🤪

    Just kidding. But with the exception of penis exposure, it doesn’t seem that extreme.
    Wouldn’t counseling for that kind of offensive workplace behavior be more appropriate than termination for a long time employee?

    http://variety.com/2017/biz/news/matt-lauer-accused-sexual-harassment-multiple-women-1202625959/

    • Pat Riot permalink
      December 1, 2017 3:43 pm

      It seems like people don’t know how to set boundaries, are afraid to speak up, and are putting their employment ahead of their integrity and self respect.

      Here, let me show the “victims” how it’s done:
      “Mr. Lauer, here is your gift back.” (the sex toy) “I’m not interested, and I hope you show me the respect to back off and let me do my job. And if I were you I’d be careful about what you do in the workplace. Somebody else might not be as…discreet as I’m being. Now, is there anything you need me to do that’s work related?”

      Then you stare the boss or co-worker in the eyes and let them know you’re a honey badger!

      • dhlii permalink
        December 1, 2017 4:05 pm

        Or you could take the deice back to the store and exchange it for one of these and give it to Matt.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 1, 2017 3:56 pm

      Jay

      “Wouldn’t counseling for that kind of offensive workplace behavior be more appropriate than termination for a long time employee?”

      If you run NBC – you can decide what is most appropriate.

      I am serious. There is not a “right answer”

      One of the reasons we want as much as possible outside the scope of govenrment – is because there is not one right answer to most issues.

      NBC is dealing with myriads of facetts to this that we likely do not know all of.

      You say the complaints were made anonymously.
      My guess is NBC knows ALOT more than we do.

      I would also guess NBC wants this out of the news as fast as possible.
      They want to report the news – not be the news.

      I would expect that stories about Lauer’s escapades could be very expensive.
      Even a few weeks of low ratings could dwarf Lauers salary.

      I do not care if NBC demands that Lauer strip naked and be tied to an andrews cross and be flogged by the women he harrassed – if that is what they think will resolve the problem.

      Send him to counseling,
      Send him to therapy.
      Flog him.
      Fire him.

      These and myriads of other options are available.

      NBC’s job is to figure out what possible solution will work best for NBC – not Lauer.

      I do not know what that is, neither do you.
      NBC really does not either.

      And that is OK.

      We do not need some manual of sexual misconduct in the workplace that dictates that
      if the meatus is exposed to another employee – that requires firing, but otherwise, they should get counseling.

  14. dduck12 permalink
    December 1, 2017 3:55 pm

    Seinfeld, aired on NBC, and some say there still are some folks there that “crossed the line”.

    • Pat Riot permalink
      December 1, 2017 4:18 pm

      Great clip stuck!

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 2, 2017 5:33 am

        Great clip, dduck.

        Is there a way to disable my auto correct other than throwing my phone in a lake? I will Google it….

  15. Pat Riot permalink
    December 1, 2017 4:14 pm

    Ron,
    I understand and appreciate the distinction you make between 1) teasing/poking fun and 2) romantic flirting. For the first-hand situation you mention (supervise 22 women at a hospital), a careful PC approach was maybe best FOR YOU in our current “hyper PC culture”.

    Everyone,
    That said, there are all kinds of people and all kinds of work environments: single people and married people, “open marriages” and strict monogamous marriages, the French who are famous for viewing the menage a’ trois and occasional extra-marital fling as healthy and normal, and work environs from construction sites to loading docks to public schools and church admin to whatever. And there is the current culture and lots of possibilities of what the culture SHOULD BE.

    So, what about playful, sexual innuendo between friendly co-workers who are married to other people? For example:
    Ray the visiting consultant and Sara the office employee have known each other for about 3 years.
    Ray: “Hey Sarah, you are looking fine today as usual!”
    Sarah: “Thank you, work husband.”
    Ray: “What do you say we take a plane to the Caribbean for a week?”
    Sarah: “Now you’re talking! Lemme go home quick and pack my clothes”
    Ray: “You won’t need a lot of clothes!”
    Sarah: “Haha. Hey Barb, Ray says he is taking me to the Carribean and I won’t need clothes!”
    Barb: “Haha. Promises, promises! He said the same thing to me last week”

    The adults should be able to decide how much is OK and where to draw the lines. If Ray works for UPS or Fed Ex, he could be jeopardizing his job. If Ray is self-employed, then some of the “rules” are different. If Sarah thinks Ray is crossing a line, she can throw some verbal cold water on him. If Sarah and Ray enjoy this banter, then it might go on for 30 years without harm. For those of you who think this kind of banter in the workplace is wrong, that’s YOUR opinion from YOUR perspective, for YOUR reasons!

    • December 1, 2017 5:36 pm

      Your definition of flirting compared to teasing or humorous banter is different than mine. I don’t consider this to be flirting given the situation of all three being on the same humorous page. I don’t see anything in this where three people have known each other for 3 years in a work environment and no outside activities have been asked for, demanded or exchanged.

      This goes on daily at almost any company and the smart men know who they can communicate like this to and who they can’t. The ones getting in trouble are the ones that continue this behavior well after they know it is not looked upon kindly by those they are directing it toward.

      Common sense has been replaced by social incompetence. And that I think is being driven by electronic social media where people are becoming less inclined to converse personally. Now women have always been the target of powerful men and that has not changed. What has changed is men and women do not know how to communicate and read nonverbal expressions and put them with the words. Then they complain because old fashioned teasing (or your flirting) becomes unacceptable sexual innuendo.

      I am beginning to understand why there are so many gay men anymore. Its becoming a mine field if your looking for female companionship.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 1, 2017 8:14 pm

      Pat;

      Force is always NOT ok.

      In the workplace your employer defines the rules.

      And they have to respond to the wants of other employees and of clients.

      I doubt NBC canned lauer because the NBC execs are prudes.

      They most likely did so for one or all of several reasons:

      They are potentially liable for his conduct
      Keeping him would cost them in terms of ratings.
      They are aware of more than we are, and there is worse then we know.
      They could can him or lose lots of other employees.

      Doesn’t matter which of these are true.

      With respect to your remarks on preferences.

      So long as force is not involved – I do not care.

      We live in the internet era. My kids knew things about sex at 9 I did not know until I was 40.

      If you are not hurting someone else (unless that someone wants to be hurt) – fine with me.

      There is lots of things that repulse me, that turn other people on. And that is OK.

      But if you involve someone else – their involvment must be consensual.

      This is also AGAIN why government should stay out of all of this.

      It is all complex, there is no way of sorting things out and making hard and fast rules – beyond that force is NOT OK.

      Beyond that – “let you freak flag fly”

    • dhlii permalink
      December 1, 2017 8:48 pm

      “For those of you who think this kind of banter in the workplace is wrong, that’s YOUR opinion from YOUR perspective, for YOUR reasons!”

      Not True. The decision that matters in your workplace is that of the owners – and even they are answerable to clients.

      Freedom does NOT mean the right to do whatever you want, wherever you want without any regard for anything.

      It does mean – except where force is involved GOVERNMENT should not interfere.

      But I can not go over to my neighbors yard and shit on it because I am into scatology.

      Where you work is not Your workplace – you do not own it.

      Your neighbors get to make the rules for what is acceptable in their homes – just as you do in yours. And your employer gets to make them for their business.

      If you do not like your neighbors rules – do not visit them.
      If you do not like your employers rules – get a different job.

      I am not BTW advising that employers should actively intrude into the conduct of employees.

      My ADVICE to employers would be – except where you have potential liability, or it would interfere with your business, it is wisest to stay out of your employees personal lives – even those parts that take place at work.

      But that is ADVICE.

      In the real world, my experience – even in workspaces where I made the rules is that things devolve to least common denominator.

      This is a common problem and goes beyond flirtation at work.

      If I have someone who has worked their ass off and they need a couple of days off – as an employer I would usually just do that.

      But over the long run what tends to happen is that any flexibility you show one employee that has earned it, quickly becomes either a point of contention or a right or both for other employees.

      The vast majority of the “office manual” that evolved at my place of business, did so driven by employee complaints about other employees.

      Joe got more vacation that I did, or Bill leaves early on Thursdays or …..

      No one wants to hear it when you say Joe put in 2 months of 60 hour weeks for which he did not get paid extra delivering on a big job, Or Bill also comes in early on Thursday’s to open the office.

      The same is true with all kinds of other conduct. I have feilded all kinds of complaints from employees about other employees – you would think I was their parent.

      You can tell me I should tell the “busy bodies” to go to hell – and often I want to.

      But the purpose of a business is to produce things. And quite often my choices would be based on what gets what I need produced – not who do I like, or who do I think is wrong.

      If a key employee who is responsible for delivering half the work of a division is ticked because someone less productive is flirting with the secretaries. The fact that I may not care – does nto mean I am going to do nothing.

      Or worse still if a client tells me about what they see as misconduct by employees – again regardless of what I think, I an still likely to try to figure out how to address it.

      Workplaces are not simple.

      Try another example.

      Fox seems to have alot of attractive intelligent women.
      I strongly suspect that is a very deliberate choice.
      These are not the Hanities and the OReily’s – the “big stars” but I strongly suspect that Fox knows their bottom line benefits from the viewer appeal of attractive intelligent women.

      Those women have their jobs as “eye candy” as well as mind candy.
      But they are “eye candy” for viewers – not toys for OReily and Ailes.

      I am sure Murdock was not happy to push out Ailes and OReily.

      At the same time, the women they were harrassing were not their toys.
      They were there for their appeal to viewers.

      Being unhappy to lose OReily does not mean Murdock would choose to lose a constant flow of smart attractive women. Nor does it mean he likes large sexual harrassment settlements and the possibility of viewers leaving over this.

      You want to make the rules for everybody – run your own business – or do so in your own home.

      While I do not think workplaces should be convents. I think even without government intervention, most are going to gravitate towards being prudish.

      Because broad sexual freedom in the workplace has infinitely large downsides and very little upsides. Just like an employee in a fast food restaurants freedom to not wash after urinating, has no upside and huge downsides.

      Employers tend towards conservatism – because everything controversial is a reason they could get in trouble – regardless of what their persona views are.

  16. Anonymous permalink
    December 1, 2017 8:17 pm

    Ron P- Perhaps I should apologize,
    This issue I believe is something I’m pretty sure is substantially the same discussion I’m sure I discussed with Dave before. So I am guilty of rehashing something to which I already knew his answer. Dave correctly points out I was deliberately walking a “tight rope” scenario, by making it a business owner rather than a CEO with responsibilities to others. I also deliberately avoided perhaps more likely scenarios like an employer blackmailing an employee that is in the country illegally, for example. What I try to “isolate” is essentially, is there any such thing as “financial coercion” and if financial coercion does exist, then should the government do anything to try to prevent it? Dave has, I believe, been very clear that he believes the government has no business in preventing any type of financial coercion, only market forces, social pressures, ect should curb such activities.
    Mike Hatcher

    • December 1, 2017 10:10 pm

      Mike, yes Dave’s form of Libertarian is pure. Mine is tampered with both conservative and progressive policies. I know laws concerning how inappropriate sexual conduct would be hard to almost impossible to enforce for most business. However, there are ethics that elected officials should have to follow and under the current situations now facing congress, ethics is just another word tossed around by them just like *truth”. We overlooked Bill Clintons rape accusations and we will overlook these also. If its not you( if someone is female) your daughter or your wife, our concern is very limited.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 2, 2017 2:39 am

        Congress is different.

        The equal protection clause essentially prevents government from discriminating.

        Arguably you could legitimately criminalize sexual harrassment by a congressmen.

        Further I argued that certain forms of sexual harrassment are actually theft .
        That would also be true in government.

        I would also note with respect to private discrimination and completely ignoring ideology.

        Laws that say You can fire someone for no reason, but you can not fire them for a few specific reasons are inherently stupid and ultimately arbitrary and caprecious in their enforcement.

        You do not want the law to encourage people to lie

    • dhlii permalink
      December 2, 2017 12:53 am

      The word coercion is usually defined as using force.

      The actual use of force is absolutely something government can and should deal with.
      Even the threat of the use of force is problematic.

      What I think you mean by “financial coercion”, is not having the choices you wish you had for financial reasons.

      How is that ever the business of government ?

      There are lots and lots of things we should not do, that are and should be legal.

      We have a right to free speach. Calling someone the N word is stupid, and wrong, and can result in bad things happening to you and few people having any sympathy.

      But it is not illegal, and should not be.

      If I take my car to a mechanic and they say they want $500 to fix it – is that financial coercion ?

      I want the car, I need the car, but the mechanic wont give me what I want unless I give them what they want – even though I really do not want to give tham $500.

      If Harvey Weinstein has a part in a movie, and some unknown actress wants that part and he says I want a blow job in return for the part – how is that different from my mechanic ?

      My wanting something really bad that is not mine, does not make me entitled to have it.

      If there are two guys after a job – and the one is clearly more qualified than the other, but the other will work for less – am I obligated to hire the more qualified one ? Or am I obligated to hire the cheaper one ?

      The answer is I was never obligated to hire anyone. The more qualified person DOES NOT have a right to the job. The Cheaper person DOES NOT have a right to the job.

      What I think you are calling financial coercion is just not having the choices I want.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 2, 2017 1:15 am

      When I was addressing the difference from the rare case of the actual sole proprietor of a business making a demand, and pretty much anyone else in authority,

      I was not fixating on “the law”. I was addressing the underlying moral principles that we hope determine “the law”.

      Unless you have 100% ownership of the business, if you say to an employee or prospective employee If you want to get/keep this job, you will do X that benefits me personally, then you are stealing from anyone who owns a part of that business.

      As we are discussing ideology and morality and principles and philosophy – what the law should be, not what the law is, I am not arguing “but we have laws covering that”.

      We have and should have laws against theft.
      If you gain a personal benefit from a position within a business – such as trading sex for a job, then you are stealing from the owners of that business – unless that business is completely yours.

      I keep trying to make this clear to most people. We do not need lots of new laws.
      Most of the things we make illegal each year – are already illegal.

      Trying to kill someone is illegal and has been atleast since Hamurabi.

      Trying to kill someone because they are gay or black does not need a separate “hate crime law”.
      Trying to kill people is already illegal. Hate is just a common motive.

      In fact hate crime laws violate an important principle – that otherwise is also part of our law.
      That is that the status of a crime victim does not matter.

      The DA is not allowed to go to court and say – Joe Doe tried to kill a rich person and therefore is MORE guilty, The defense attorney can not argue Joe Doe killed a bad person and therefore should get a pass.

      If a person is terminally ill and you murder them (I am not talking about assisted suicide), a month before they would have died anyway – it is still murder.

      Anyway, the point is that we really only need a relatvely small number of laws for a small number of crimes, and that covers everything.

      We do not need a law that says you can not demand a blow job in return for a job, because that is already a crime – theft, except in the narrow case you own 100% of the business, or you have the owners explicit consent to trade jobs for personal favors.

      Beyond that, all conduct I do not like – is not criminal. Not giving me the choices I wish I had – might be mean, but it is not criminal.

      But that does not mean there can be no consequnce for bad conduct that is not criminal.

      AS we are seeing right now – many of the allegations of sexual misconduct being made are not crimes, even those that are – most are not prosecutable.

      That does not mean there are no consequences – as Bill OREilly, Roger Ailes, and Matt Lauer have discovered.

      Finally where force is not involved – it is best to leave government out of it.

      That does not mean letting people get away with bad acts that are not crimes.
      It just means sorting things out without government and without force.

      It means boycotts, or firing, or other consequences that do not involve the use of force.

  17. dhlii permalink
    December 2, 2017 2:46 am

  18. dhlii permalink
    December 2, 2017 2:49 am

    I keep getting told economists oppose this.

  19. dhlii permalink
    December 2, 2017 2:52 am

    ‘Flynn is only valuable if he can provide self-proving information or leads’
    Alan Dershowitz, emeritus professor of law at Harvard University

    A bought witness who has pleaded guilty to lying will not have much credibility. He is only valuable if he can provide self-proving information or leads. What I don’t understand is why Flynn would lie about urging the Russians to veto or delay the Security Council resolution condemning Israeli settlements. That lame-duck resolution wrongly tied the hands of the incoming president and the request was entirely proper. Perhaps Flynn mistakenly thought the Logan Act, which prohibits unauthorized citizens from negotiating with foreign governments in relation to a dispute with the United States, was still good law—which it isn’t.

    • Jay permalink
      December 2, 2017 9:28 am

      Here are the opinions of two credible legal experts about the implications of Flynn’s plea.

      • Jay permalink
        December 2, 2017 9:49 am

        Further education on plea significience:
        https://lawfareblog.com/flynn-plea-quick-and-dirty-analysis

      • dhlii permalink
        December 2, 2017 9:01 pm

        After reading the first paragraph any doubts you had that the rest of this lacked crediblty should have been gone.

        If Flynn had the evidence of the lawfare allegations, they would have been part of the plea deal – atleast as part of the information, if not the charges.

        It would be in BOTH Flynn and Mueller’s interests to do so.

        Flynn is protected from further charges for anything that is part of the plea deal.
        Mueller gains two things – leverage with respect to Flynn who can not risk losing a deal which includes allocution to numerous other crimes, and Mueller establishes the conspiracy he needs to go after the next player.

        The Flynn deal was most likely tame, because it was the most Mueller could get.
        Flynn faced a long expensive court battle that had risk for him and his son, but one that he could likely win if he could last – Flynn’s “misrepresentations” to the FBI are not sufficient to sustain a criminal prosecution. Flynn got himself out of Mueller’s sights quite cheaply.

        I would strongly suggest reading Dershowitz – though I think Derschowitz misses a key point – because Derschowitz is more familiar with defending people who are quilty,

        Flynn has excellent reason to beleive he will ultimately be pardoned.
        Just as Scooter Libby and Casper Weinberger, and Deutch and …..

        It is unlikely that Flynn is going to cooperate with Mueller in a way that would jephardize a near certain future pardon.

        Regardless, Derschowitz does make on critical observation. Absolutely anything Flynn provides to Mueller must be “self proving”.

        Flynn has just plead to “crim-in-falsi” – a crime of falsification – lying.
        He has almost no credibility as a witness. The jury will actually be instructed if he testifies to weight the fact that he has plead to lying.

        Put differently this is not going to be a he say – he says. Flynn must do more than “cooperate” to damage Trump, He must supply actual evidence that does not require his own testimony.

        The left has presumed from the beggining of this that such evidence exists.
        more than a years since this started – that remains nothing but wishful thinking.

        Maybe Flynn has a document stash, maybe Flynn can provide information to Mueller that Mueller could not get otherwise but will result in proof of something we as of yet have no evidence of and have very good reason to beleive could not have happened.

        The only issue of consequence is that if such evidence actually existed – Flynn would be one of the people who might know.

        Regardless, we are still looking to an actual crime. The left is hoping for both the crime and the evidence to appear magically.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 2, 2017 8:41 pm

        An expert is not credible merely by virtue of your saying so.
        In fact someone is not expert merely by virtue of assertion.

        Thus far Derschowitz, McCarthy, and Turley have proven the most credible.

        I beleive that McCarthy has noted – and certainly many others have noted,
        No matter how many scalps Mueller collects, he will have failed if he makes no progress on Collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

        We have nothing in that regard today, that we did not have in the summer of 2016.

        McCarthy interestingly also observed that it clearly appears that Flynn was “setup” by the Obama administration.
        Flynn’s “misconduct” was long before Mueller was appointed.

        There is actually no rational reason for the Obama FBI to have been asking of Flynn the questions he answered inaccurately.

        Further that because the FBI was monitoring Kislyak’s communications, when they talked with Flynn in late 2016 they already knew the answers to the questions they were asking.

        In otherwords the objective of questioning Flynn was not to investigate, but to entrap.

        McCarthy does an excellent job of noting that While Flynn may now be a “cooperating witness”.

        The “plea bargains” Mueller has constructed with both Flynn and Papadoilis are the opposite of those a Prosecutor trying to roll up a conspiracy typically does.

        Normally the prosecuter overcharges rather than undercharges in the plea bargain, for two reasons:

        Because the plea is itself part of the evidence of the conspiracy, by incorporating the conspiracy into the plea the prosecutor creates the presumption and the evidence the conspiracy exists.

        And because contra the claims of too many experts pontificating on this, undercharging substantially WEAKENS your leverage against your cooperating witness.

        Flynn has plead guilty to something that was already know true in late 2016 – that he misrepresented his communications with Kislyak – both to the FBI and to Pence.

        What he has plead guilty to is something that a jury could very easily have acquitted him for.
        Further whether shortly or at a later time, it is something near certain he will be pardoned for.
        Historically that is what presidents have done when subordinates were charged or convicted of mis-stating legal actions. Both Bushes did this, and Clinton pardoned significantly more egregious crimes by staff.

        It is likely that Kushner is currently in Mueller’s sights.
        But most likely for his involvement in the actions that are central to Flynn’s plea.

        What gets missed repeatedly here is that it is NOT what Flynn did that was wrong.
        It is inaccurately answering questions to the FBI regarding it.

        Kushner’s exposure – if any, would be that he might not have accurately represented those actions – either in testimony or in statements to the FBI.

        I would further note that Mueller has used an incredibly expansive definition of false statement, that almost certainly would not survive an appeal.

        As a rule a prosecutable false statement, must:
        Have been knowingly wrong at the time it was made
        Have been relevant to the investigation – and relevant does not merely mean of interest.
        Have resulted in misdirecting the investigation or tribunal.
        Have not been corrected before there was harm.

        Neither Papadoluis’s nor Flynn’s purportedly false statements meet Most of those criteria.

        Conversely numerous statements, testimony, etc. of Clinton and her aides absolutely meet all those criteria.

        There is are enormous presumptions on the part of the “credible experts” that think this is significant.

        One is that Flynn got a sweet heart deal in return for providing damning information about the Trump campaign.

        It is more plausible that Flynn got a sweet heart deal because this was the most Mueller could get Flynn on and Flynn wants himself and his son out of Mueller’s sights – winning a legal battle against Mueller could have cost Flynn millions. Flynn has substantially reduced his exposure.
        It will actually be extremely hard for Mueller to rescind these deals and attempt to prosecute other claims. That itself could actually constitute prosecutorial misconduct.

        Anyway, it is almost certain that Mueller’s next step is to target Kushner regarding his directions to Flynn. Kushner’s exposure is ONLY his past testimony and statements to the FBI.
        I would also note that Kushner is far better situated for a knock down drag out with Mueller over “false statements” than Flynn was. Further Mueller is not able to leverage other family members against Kushner as he was with Flynn. In fact the opposite is true.

        It is in the Trump families best interests to stop Mueller at the gates.

        Finally, we are almost 9 month’s into Mueller’s investigation, with absolutely NOTHING touching Trump/Russia and the election.

  20. dhlii permalink
    December 2, 2017 3:18 am

    Here is Andrew McCarthy on the Flynn Plea.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/454269/michael-flynn-plea-no-breakthrough-russia-investigation

  21. Pat Riot permalink
    December 2, 2017 5:55 am

    Ron,
    I think you have a good and reasonable “take” or handle on banter, teasing, flirting, etc. in the workplace, and I enjoyed our brief back and forth here. It is interesting that your definition of “flirting” seems to require actual romantic activity or real intent of romantic activity, while my definition of flirting includes playful temptation, innuendo, romantic and sexual “probing” or “testing of the water” without actual intent. I know there are a lot of wives out there who consider their husband just being nice to and smiling at an attractive other person as “flirting,” but now we are into language and the variety and the curious subjectiveness of definitions.

  22. Pat Riot permalink
    December 2, 2017 6:46 am

    Dave,

    The concept of coercion/force is very foundational to your thinking. You must agree with that!

    I don’t disagree with everything you have put forth in this thread or other threads. That is gentlemanly of me to preface in this way!

    Your statements show an attempt at a framework of truth or certainty that “exists” and cannot be denied, as if a distinction about a “right” could be a steel girder, a massive I-beam that will support all the weight of your arguments resting on it. (A theory regarding these framework statements might be that the analytical mind producing these statements is so active, energized, and relentless, I’m being complimentary there, that it desires a non-breakable support upon which it can finally rest…but that is just a theory, a musing).

    I believe in Truth and truths, and enjoy digging down to the foundation of a thing. I am not one of those relativists who say “it is all relative and subjective and there is no Truth, only relative and temporary truths…”

    But I do know that what a bunch of people have in their heads often supersedes truth in a very practical way, ad what a bunch of people have in their heads can get me killed or arrested, and the kind of “rights” and truths that your statements typically tunnel toward are often not going to save my life except in a court of law, and sometimes not there either!

    An illustration to help clarify what I am tunneling toward here: If I slap a cow in the face in a crowded street in India I believe my action will yield a different reaction than if I slap a cow at a rodeo in Tennessee. It is what the people believe about the cow that matters, not some abstract truth or attempt at certainty. I wish to apply this to the topic of sexual “misconduct,” as that is Rick’s current civilization topic here.

    My cow illustration is random and not perfect, I admit. I have to get ready for work and out the door. We could take the “rights” and “abstract distinctions” that your statements often drive to, and travel with them to North Korea for example, and how much will they protect us?

    Isn’t what we need as a society, in real time, a practical, reasonable working explanation of allowable conduct, that Jill Q. Public and John Doe can understand, as a protection against mass media-fed hysteria?

    • Roby permalink
      December 2, 2017 7:55 am

      Freaking Brilliant Pat. You get the FB medal for today. Win it 5 days in a row and you get a trophy, Rick will mail it to you.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 2, 2017 8:01 pm

        The even shorter response to you, would be

        The possibility of alternatives to my values and beleifs does not make any alternative plausible or equal.

        I have offered my principles and subjected them to everyone here’s criticism and they have not been found wanting.

        You have not. I have addressed that “common sense” and “common decency” are neither common nor even commonly understood. They are not principles. At best they are your personal perception of what you hope are shared gut feelings.

        They are not a valid basis for making choices about the use of force against others.

        Addressing those of the left more generally, centuries of experience show whatever the foundation, the solutions of the left do not work.

        Excluding what has failed is normally called learning.
        Though the left seems to think excluding what it does not like is learning.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 2, 2017 7:27 pm

      So much to your post.

      I am libertarian. That appears to be more than an ideology. It is a personality type.

      There are several things that means. One is that libertains are strong “systemitizers”.
      They are the people who try to put everything into some kind of framework.

      I would note that science is the process of organizing knowledge into a framework.

      I rarely use “coercion” – because “force or the threat of force” is a narrower defintion fo coercion than most people use.

      Regardless, force is NOT foundational to my thinking.

      It is foundational to Government. if we are dealing with force we are dealing with govenrment, and if we are dealing with government we are dealing with force.

      That is not merely my “view” that is pretty much foundational to ALL conceptions of government.
      Even fascists, socialists, authoritarians, those on the left and those on the right would agree,
      or should if they logically thought about it.

      The distinction between the left, right, and libertarains is not that government is force.
      It is what government uses of force are justified.

      My “libertarian” construction underlies EVERY ideology I am aware of. Again the distinction is that the left and the right are prepared to justify the use of force much more frequently than libertarains.

      Moving on. The science of knowledge is epistemology.

      Skipping what is conceivable, and past what is possible, limiting ourselves to what is consistent with the universe that humans inhabit, there are many things that are actually known.
      The following are specific to that universe that humans exist in.

      Of all possible premises we can know for certain that nearly all of them are provably FALSE.
      Finding things that are false is extremely easy. Finding truth is harder.

      Further the absence of absolute truth does not preclude relative truth.

      We can actually know the relative probability of the truth of most things that we beleive to be true.

      “Contradictions do not exist. Whenever you think that you are facing a contradiction, check your premises. You will find that one of them is wrong.”
      Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

      In the human inhabited universe – the real world, that statement is absolute truth.

      Another similar statement

      “When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.” Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, stated by Sherlock Holmes

      is similarly true.

      You will find from the above that it is possible to conclude many things:

      The classical liberalism that I offer does not contradict the real world.

      All other known ideologies at one point or another contradict the real world.

      I have not stated that my perspective is the truth, only that it is possible, and has not been found to conflict or contradict reality.

      I would also note – for Roby, that everything above is in the domain of the science of knowledge – epistemology.

      As I structure things philosophy is subordinate to the science of knowledge, but sometimes it is expressed as the philosophy of knowledge which I think is wrong.

      Philosophy is downstream from that – and unfortunately for Roby the remainder of science is SUBORDINATE to philosophy.

      Most of science is not merely constrained by observable reality, but also meta rules that are essentially philosophy of science that result in the axioms of science – things we accept as true that we can not prove.

      So whether those like Roby like it or not science rests on a small number of things we can not prove, as well as systems of logic and mathematics,

      You can not have molecular biology without assuming an enormous number of things that many like Roby wish to elide.

      There are some divisions that occur – because gravity as an example does not depend on human behavior – while sociology, politics and economics do.

      But I would note that even in science at its deepest levels everything is probabilistic.

      Given everything that is knowable about a subatomic particle, we can not know exactly what that specific particle will do. But we can know with an extremely high probability what nearly all particles will do.

      Economics as an example is much the same.
      If I raise the price of something – I can not know what every persons response will be, But I can know with a high degree of certainty what the overall response will be.

      You addressed “rights” as something distinct. Sometimes I talk about rights – but mostly I do not.
      Rights is another word that means too many different things to different people.

      Natural rights are what our founders tended to talk about.
      Many talk about “constitutional rights” – I like the constitution, but it is not biblical truth further we have mangled it so badly over 250 years that it no longer means what it says, and that is not likely fixable without a revolution.

      But I can talk about liberty. And now we are starting to talk about that “philosophy” that Roby wants to ignore.

      If you accept that humans have free will, and you reject hard determinism, the alternate to these are philosophies that few of us would find tolerable, like it or not you are stuck with an awful lot of what I argue.

      Without getting into a great deal of detail, what I am saying is you can reject alot of what I argue.
      But what we accept and reject has consequences.

      If you accept that contradictions do not exist (in the real world),
      If you accept that most premises can be proven false even if nothing can be prove absolutely true.
      If you accept that we withing reason establish the relative probability of something being true.

      If you accept that free will exists,
      If you accept that everything is not determinant.

      You have precluded as false an enormous amount.
      In fact with only about half of those premises you can preclude every ideology except libertarianism.

      Without free will as an example – there is no morality.

      Conversely if you accept that humans have free will, you not only accept morality, but you have a foundation for it. Acts are immoral when they interfere with the free will of others.

      You also quite quickly end up with the lockean social contract – essentially that government exists to protect all liberty except the liberty to infringe on the liberty of others.

      Returning to your hypothetical.

      Absolutely people “believe” things that are false. They do so in india. Even scientists often believe things that are false or subsequently prove to be false.

      I am not denying that false beleifs exist, are held widely, and may have dire consequences.
      Nor even that to some extent we might find ourselves having to conform our behavior to them.

      The fact that we must live in a world where many people hold views that are demonstrably false does not mean we should throw up our hands and punish cow slapping criminally in the US.

      Nor does it mean we should repeat mistakes we have made in the past.

      You do not have to accept my libertarianism. Simply rooting from the world what we know – and in many cases have known for nearly a century to be false, would dramatically improve the world, standards of living and politics – though the major political parties throughout the world would not survive.

      I would note that in all of the above I have only barely mentioned “rights”.

      I would also note that libertarianism does not answer all the questions in the world.
      It is about how we govern ourselves. It leaves the vast majority of that part of our lives divorced from government and the use of force, up to each individual.

      If you wish to beleive that cows are sacred and cow slapping is a sin – even though it may be arguable that is a demonstrably false beleif – still go ahead.

      But you may not use force to impose that belief on others.

      Many of us have been discussing workplace conduct in the context of sex.

      Absent force, we need not agree. I am very uncomfortable with much of what you describe as your conduct, and I would not be surprised if others in your workplace perceive you quite differently from how you think of yourself and how you think they think of you.

      Whether I am right or wrong about that can work itself out.
      Further those things do not have to work themselves out the same way in the same places.

      While I think there is a kind of gravity that is going to work towards desxualising the work place to a large extent. That does not preclude some workplaces self selecting towards conduct that is considered acceptable that is what you think is OK, while others self selecting to puritanism.

      This is also why liberty is so important.
      My guess is that you would not likely get hired in a workplace where the conduct you engage in was viewed dimly, and that even if you were – you would quickly choose not to work their.

      Firing people is actually the extreme and rare means by which these types of selection occur.

      I observed decades ago that the worst employees somehow seem to gravitate towards the worst employers.

      When we choose where we work, and when employers choose who they hire, we self select for myriads of factors – beyond the nonsensical “best person for the job”.

      Most of us try hard – both to work at places where the culture fits our values, and to hire people whose values fit our culture.

      We fire people only when the self selection process has failed.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 2, 2017 7:35 pm

      “Isn’t what we need as a society, in real time, a practical, reasonable working explanation of allowable conduct, that Jill Q. Public and John Doe can understand, as a protection against mass media-fed hysteria?”

      To directly answer this in a 100 words, rather than what might be several thousand.

      NO!.

      We have a few rules of conduct rooted in when the use of force is justifiable.
      Those “laws” are as rigid and bright line and simple and clear as we can make them and the consequences of violating them could include loss of liberty.

      In all else acceptable conduct works itself out on its own.

      What is acceptable at Ecstasy strip club, and the mormon tabernacle are likely to be extremely different.

      What is acceptable at Giant and what is acceptable at Target can still be different.

      As employers – we try to find the people who will fit together and produce.
      As employees – we try to find the employer where we best fit and are productive.

      That process will not consistently work perfectly.

      Additionally society as a whole – often through the vehicle of consumers choices, we get a voice.

      If NBC chooses an approach that its viewers are offended by – it is likely NBC will have to change.

      No we do not need absolutes everywhere for everything.

  23. Roby permalink
    December 2, 2017 7:13 am

    If an attractive women were to grab my son’s ass at work, he would likely be very pleased and friends and family would likely all congratulate him. If an attractive man were to grab my daughter’s ass at work, she would be in a crisis state and friends and family would be trying to help her figure out WTF to do. The careless portion of the male brain thinks, “I’d enjoy having my ass grabbed, so will she if she isn’t uptight.” (The careless part of Bill Cosby’s brain thinks “I’d like being drugged and sexually used, so should she”, see the section on alpha males below)

    You all know this is true.

    Going back deep into the past before the thin veneer of civilization and modesty and clothing, indiscriminate sex for a male means pleasure, victory and at a deeper level, spreading his genes. Indiscriminate sex for a female means getting pregnant and not being choosy about which genes she is now obligated to raise. And noone was thinking about living a long life and retiring to Arizona, young suddenly sexually mature humans were living in the moment. As far as I know.

    In nature there are alpha males and even alpha females among primates. And, in humans too, but this concept is not recognized by law, except in (Saudi Arabia etc.). This leads to trouble with the thin veneer of civilization.

    The erasure of the very ground that the Prairie Home Companion used to stand on is a marker of an extreme, PC gone truly utterly bonkers. I think most people will recognize this and push back.

    Just think, if the human race survives, our time will be ancient history in the future and they may figure this all out and have a good laugh at us. Like the people in Woody Allen’s Sleeper and the Orgasmatron. (Ooops I forgot, Woody Allen, not a nice man, married his step daugher told everyone to just lay off of his hollywood buddy Polanski, damn those alpha males.)

    • Jay permalink
      December 2, 2017 9:14 am

      I’m also going to use the word ‘brilliant’ to describe your comments above, Roby.

      But I fear the pushback is going to be a long ways down the road. The pendulum of absurdity is still picking up momentum.

      • Roby permalink
        December 2, 2017 9:57 am

        Well, if you are going to flatter me there is always the possibility that we can get together as THREE open minded couples with You and Pat and I and our wives.

        I am sure we can out do the libertarians, who merely accept this kind of thing in principle.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 2, 2017 9:31 pm

        I am not going to address what areas my principles with respect to sexual freedom turn into action, beyond that group sex is not my personal kink. and I will put my principles into practice – or not as I choose while allowing you something you do not allow others – the freedom to act without the intervention of government.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 2, 2017 7:51 pm

      Humans far more than any other creature are capable of changing their world and they world.

      Ancient natural requirements remain to some extent encoded in our DNA, while at the same time the conditions for success are radically different than many millenia ago.

      Life expectance is greater than 2 decades, the need to procreate like bunnies, because most children did not survive is passed.

      The Alpha Male – in terms of that one most likely to thrive in the world we have created is quite different from that 100,000 years ago, or even 100.

      We preserve the instincts and preferences encoded in our DNA, in part because while we have remade nature for our own benefit – entropy is still a law of nature and should our modern fabric tear or burn to ash, or nature throw a handgrenade at us, we may – briefly need the alpha traits of the past.

  24. Roby permalink
    December 2, 2017 7:14 am

    Pat and Mike back and being scathingly witty, Youza! Splendid!

  25. Pat Riot permalink
    December 2, 2017 9:01 am

    Roby! Wow, the Welcome Back theme song (very nice, enjoyed that) in close proximity to my words being called “Brilliant”! Are you flirting with me, because it’s working and I’m ready to have sex with you now, lol!

    Excellent of you to bring up the double standard of male grab-ass vs. female grab-ass in such a down-home, relatable, cuts-to-the-chase fashion. Also on target with the “thin veneer of civilation”–Holy Cow ( ! ) this has been a hot topic of mine thus year from my makeshift pulpits and soap boxes! I bet Syrians wish every minute of every day they could have their thin veneer back instead if the hellish nightmare they’re in.

    More later…

    • Roby permalink
      December 2, 2017 9:52 am

      “because it’s working and I’m ready to have sex with you now, lol!”

      I assume what you mean by this euphemism is a proposal to get together as two open minded 21st century couples with our wives. Is your wife a sport, nudge nudge wink wink?

      Have an photos?

      (take that Libertarians).

      • dhlii permalink
        December 2, 2017 9:04 pm

        How is consenting adults engaging freely in actions of their own choice that do not harm others a slap in the face of libertarians ?

        How is it not confirmation of libertarian principles ?

        Roby, I am at a complete loss to understand how your mind works.

        This is just another example where you think that something that makes my point refutes it.

      • Roby permalink
        December 3, 2017 8:49 am

        Earth to Dave. The entire exchange was an example of humor. I wonder what kind of entry humor has in your libertarian encyclopedia? Oh, I am sure you are all for it in principle…

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 9:50 am

        “Earth to Dave. The entire exchange was an example of humor. I wonder what kind of entry humor has in your libertarian encyclopedia? Oh, I am sure you are all for it in principle”

        So ?

  26. December 2, 2017 10:59 am

    I’m late to the game as usual, but most of you seem to agree that rampant PC has jumped the shark. I’m not talking about the many cases of serious sexual abuse, of course. But the hysteria over any form of improper touching is going to rob the already fraught relationship between men and women of any remnants of spontaneity and charm.

    By the way, I’ve noticed that all the comments so far are from men. Where’s Priscilla?

    • dhlii permalink
      December 2, 2017 9:45 pm

      Rick;

      I do not agree that we have “jumped the shark”, and in fact hope this continues for some time.

      I think we have ALOT of purging to do, before we can try to reach anew and actual “moderate” position.

      When we get through purging, I think that the “answer” is going to be short of force, each workplace works out its own concept of acceptable conduct.

      I expect that will result in a heavy bias towards tame – because contra the left businesses are incredibly risk averse – particularly risks that have little upside and large downsides.

      I grasp that sex and romance are intrinsic to human nature and trying to exterminate them from the workplace is nearly impossible. Nor am I suggesting that we “should” try – only that the incentives for business lead in that direction.

      I do not think there is a “right” way that men should treat women – or visa versa.

      But the use or threat of force is wrong, and beyond that what any individual finds unacceptable for them – is unacceptable for them so long as the force of govenrment is not the means of implimenting personal preferences.

      I think it is very important to note that criminal standards are completely different from standards elsewhere.

      I can “believe” a woman’s claims of misconduct in most sphere’s without necessarily being able to convict the alleged perpetrator of a crime.

      I am not nearly as comfortable as most of the men here with the presumption that Women are near universally receptive of the interactions that so many men here seem to think they are.

      I know that the women in my life complain about being pinched and grabbed by people who do not have the relationship that would make that acceptable to them.

      Yes, I would like to here from alot more women on this.

  27. December 2, 2017 2:04 pm

    I’m right here, Rick! I figured that I would wait until some other women had weighed in on the topic, since generally there are a couple who post at the very beginning, after a new column and then leave me to be the sole, but highly regarded, representative of my gender 😉

    Certain of the men caught up in this hysteria have had well-known and years-long reputations for their abusive and unwanted sexual abuse of women ~ I’m thinking here of Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer (Maybe you guys don’t read the National Enquirer or Star, but I find them an amusing way to while away my time in the grocery store lines…and Lauer has been, for years, the subject of many exposés on his randy behavior) and John Conyers (according to Cokie Roberts, virtually all female Capitol Hill reporters knew to never get into an elevator alone with him.

    Many of the others are problematic for a few reasons: the lack of any real evidence of assault or harrassment, the length of time that has passed since the alleged acts occurred, along with the changing cultural definitions of what constitutes acceptable behavior in the workplace and, indeed, generally. I used Al Franken as an example….I can’t stand Franken, I find him a self-important, sententious, supremely unfunny (yes, even back in his SNL days ~ I challenge you to find a video of a sketch in which he was actually funny) nasty troll of a man. However, I did say, back before he had more than a half-dozen accusers, that, other than the creepy picture of him groping ~ or pretending to grope ~ a sleeping woman’s breasts, that there was nothing but “he said/she said” evidence of his boorish behavior. And even the creepy picture fit in with his unfunny style of “humor,” and even that happened before he was a senator.

    Now, if he’s been grabbing asses while posing with women since he was elected ~ and, he has not really denied that ~ I find that pretty repulsive… but I guess I thought he was pretty repulsive anyway. I guess my point is that I don’t think it’s worth driving him from office over, particularly since there are guys like Conyers who have been harassing his staffers, dropping his drawers, and using his taxpayer funded office budget to pay off his accusers.

    In addition to this, I think that women need to take some responsibility in many of these cases. The whole #metoo thing strikes me as an imposition of victimhood on many women who are perfectly capable of handling certain of these situations themselves. For example, I once worked with a guy who would frequently comment on my appearance in a positive, but overly flirtatious way: stuff like “Great dress, really shows off your nice legs.” After the first 3-4 times he did this, I said ” Cut it out Joe, you’re making me uncomfortable.” We worked for a big company that was already having mandated sexual harassment workshops, so I assumed that he would know that he was on thin ice. And, sure enough, I never got another “compliment” from him again. In fact, he barely spoke to me after that.

    Should I have reported him to HR? I could have, he might have gotten off with a warning, r maybe, if there were other women whom he had been treating in the same way, and who reported his behavior, he might have been fired. But, I think that we have lost perspective on what types of behavior are “small potatoes,” best able to be handled on a personal level, and what types of behavior are more serious. Not to mention, that I think that the idea that women who claim that they have been harrassed, assaulted, or otherwise mistreated by men should “always be believed,” is not only stupid, but potentially dangerous.

    So, those are some of my thoughts… I have others, but I’ll see what others may think of these.

    By the way ~ Hi Pat! Hi Mike! Bout time…..

    • December 2, 2017 2:47 pm

      Just to clarify, I think that all allegations of harassment and assault need to be taken seriously. But, such allegations need to be investigated and both the accuser and the accused should be given a chance to be heard and believed.

      • December 2, 2017 4:04 pm

        Priscilla, I agree with you 100%. This is a tough issue when there is one accuser, but it gets easier to develop a case for employee discipline when multiple accusers come forth. The House and Senate is a different animal. Based on one report I heard, there is little the house leadership can do. The senate has some ethics rules and they can refuse to sit a member. Not sure what it takes to expel a senator.

        But this provides the parties a chance to come together and develop rules, either through legislation or some other method at the federal or state level (recommendation) where all complaints would be reviewed by an independent commission. Then some form of punishment based on predefined levels according to the severity of the behavior would result in censure to expulsion. If it were at the state level, there would be actions recommended by the legislation the states could adopt. (NEVER HAPPEN as the parties would never agree on anything)

        But it would set a good precedence if they worked that out.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 1:17 am

        Ron

        NOOOO!

        If there is force involved – it is ALREADY a crime, and it should be prosecuted.
        We need nothing new there – aside from maybe more willingness of women to come forward, which this might help.

        Otherwise, PLEASE!!!!!! Leave government out of it. Absolutely no good can come of it no matter what.

        That does not mean we do nothing – we ARE doing something, this is being reported, people are getting canned, we are thinking more about it. Businesses are reassessing their policies.

        Priscilla’s response to the event she dealt with a good example – and I think had a good outcome.

        Priscilla talked about going to HR – and I do not want to stifle that.
        But in general where force is not involved, I think we should all look to solve ALL our problems with each other – not thought intermediaries, unless that does not work.

        I would also note in line with Pat’s remark’s that Priscilla responded that the remarks were not welcome and they stopped. I would also have been fine for her to respond favorably to them.

        Though I would disagree with Pat overall and suggest that most workplaces are going to move further towards puritanism. There is little upside for business to a sexually open workplace.

        But that is an expectation of mine – not a dictate.

        If a business wants to permit open expression of all these things, and the employees and clients respond favorably – fine by me.

        It is important to grasp that a job is not a right for many reasons.
        One of which is that rights are entitled to very high degrees of protection – and we do not actually want that with jobs.

        We do not want the entire workspace to become homogenous in any particular way.

        It is perfectly fine for different workplaces to be different, and for employees who are uncomfortable in one to seek another and for employers who do not see staff as compatible with their workplace culture to help them go elsewhere.

        Most of us are not going to find a perfect fit. But we are entitled to weigh our personal values and our need for the job against the demands of the job and the cultural that comes with it.

        If I was insecure about my future, or being compensated in a way I could not get elsewhere I might choose to tolerate a work environment that was a poor fit, and conform myself to its demands.

        Conversely if I was a poor fit and felt I could easily do better elsewhere – I would.

        Having lots of different choices is GOOD, not bad.

        Government destroys choices. That is literally its job, that is a part of why we only want government where we must have government.

        We have to get past this nonsense that the only solution to any problem is government.

        There is an interesting tweet running arround now.

        It goes something Like NBC did NOT fire Matt Lauer – WE DID! Free markets work.

        Accept that you are not getting a perfect result – there is no such thing.
        Once you understand that the net extent of the failure will ALWAYS be lower when the market resolves the issue, that when govenrment does – UNLESS there is force involved.

      • December 3, 2017 11:23 am

        Dave, well once again I guess I did not say what I meant to say. I know there are laws already. I know business is taking care of their issues. I know that people can go to HR.

        So people go to HR. HR investigates. Someone may or may not get fired based on findings. And, based on the issues, if a complaint is filed with the police, someone may go to trial.

        Now compare that to government. Who does a woman complain to concerning a representative? A senator? How do they investigate? What are the ramifications if something is found?

        My comment was based on the above questions. Clarify how something is investigated and clarify what happens based on the findings. If that requires legislation to make sanctions legal that the house or senate takes, then that was my point. And if it has to be at the state level on how their rep. or sen. is handled, then make that a legal document that states could adopt if they so choose.

        What needs to change is a senator elected for 6 years accused of sexual misconduct by multiple women and absolutely nothing happens for another 6years when they run for reelection. There has to be quick and lasting consequences to men like Conyers and Frankin, not just, “well they did something unacceptable and the voters will decide in the future what will happen” That is not justice for the accuser and is not quick.

        Sorry, I am not that much Libertarian to make it OK for the powerful to impose themselves unwillingly on others and then face no consequences until years later.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 12:31 pm

        I think that we all understand that whatever should happen regarding those in government things are different. That is an artifact of the nature of government – not markets.
        What do you suggest ?

        With respect to your original hypothetcal.

        IF there is force involved – this STARTS with the woman going to government.
        If not, government is not a part at all.

        If not there is NOT any specific prescribed what it is handled.
        The woman could go to HR first – or as Priscilla did she could confront the person whose conduct bothered her.

        There is no canned libertarian solution to how to deal with miscreants in government.
        The libertarian answer to government is to shrink it as much as possible, and to reduce its power as much as possible,
        and to be permanently vigilant.

        Regardless, no matter what its scale distaste for how government works has nothing at all to do with libertarianism.

        If you want you can go full blown anarcho-capitalist and eliminate government entirely turning its functions over to competing voluntary businesses.

        I actually find some appeal to anarcho-capitalism. But I am already arguing for something that it is nearly impossible to get others to accept. Arguing for something that stands no chance in hell is just farther than I am willing to go.

        Regardless, there is plenty of room for discussion of how govenrment should handle internal non-criminal miscreants. And no ideology provides the answer.

      • December 3, 2017 3:45 pm

        Dave”What do you suggest ?”

        Read AND comprehend what I posted twice!!
        I am not going to key it in again

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 4:14 pm

        OK, I would likely support most anything – including things that would require a constitutional amendment. I believe removing a senator as opposed to other forms of discipline would require a constitutional amendment.
        I think it is constitutional to impeach a senator – but that require 66 votes. I beleive it has occurred something like 15 times. But 14 of those were removing confederate senators during the civil war.
        Once was for treason.

      • December 3, 2017 4:53 pm

        Dave. Yes the powers in congress comes from the constitution. However, since that time we have a number of resolutions adopted by the senate and house to oversee activities of its members.
        For instance :
        Preamble to S. Res. 266, Code of conduct in 1968, which includes the statement ” the officer must never conduct his own affairs so as to infringe on the public interest”
        Senate Resolution 338, adopted in the mid 60’s that state ” (the senate)is authorized to receive and investigate allegations of improper conduct which may reflect upon the Senate”

        So given these predecessor resolutions, there is no reason why the senate can not adopt one specifically for sexual misconduct and spell out EXACTLY. in plain simple language a moron could understand (because their are enough of those in congress which requires that to be the level of wording) what the sanctions will be if there is evidence that inappropriate sexual activity took place and to spell out what “timely” means in an investigation.

        The problem is they will do nothing but talk about it for a few weeks and then something else comes to light that takes all the attention and voters just shrug it off like that is something that happens everyday and that is fine for politicians to behave like that.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 6:03 pm

        I would tend to agree that little will occur but talk.

        Moore is going to be elected, and seated,
        Conyers and Franken will remain, and we will likely not find out which politicians resulted in millions of sexual harrasment payouts.

        I think that “disciplining legislators” is limited to thing like stripping committee assignments, and impeachment – which requiress 66 votes.

        I am not sure that spelling out what constitutes unaccpetable behavior matters – unless you can remove them for it.

        I think we are both agreed that as things are it is too hard to impose consequences on a legislator.

        And that they will not do what they are able to do.

  28. dhlii permalink
    December 2, 2017 10:38 pm

    We can connect two themes together.

    This summer an FBI investigator – who had a lead position in:
    The Clinton email investigation,
    The FBI investigation of Trump/Russia
    The Mueller investigation of Trump/Russia

    was dismissed and demoted.

    Because ?

    He was having an extramarital affair with an FBI lawyer who worked for Andrew McCabe – aslo tied to all these investigations and throughout that affair exchanged texts with that lawyer strongly supporting Clinton and Opposing Trump.

    While Mueller appropriately dumped this guy, there are far more serious issues.

    This is NOT someone who started showing Bias in the summer of 2017.
    This agent was demonstrating Bias with respect to BOTH Clinton and Trump and was a key investigator in BOTH investigations. He has been part of this entire mess for over 2 years.

    Unless, this was only discovered in the summer of 2017 – this is a BIG problem for the FBI and likely Mueller.

    This makes the claim “Partisan witch hunt” credible. It also makes the argument that the fix was in for Hillary credible.

    Then there is the separate issue that the House Investigative Committee has been demanding information regarding this and related matters for months.

    They still do not have it.

    Further it appears that the Post story is an “intential leak” by the FBI – because they know they were going to have to provide Nunes what he asked for and the story was getting out anyway.

    I would note that if the left – and Mueller are going to hold Flynn to this incredible ethical standard – it is increasingly evident the FBI set him up, then they subject themselves to the same standard.

    Nunes is threatening contempt of congress against Rosenstein and Wray, and I think he should deliver.

    It is increasingly evident that the FBI/DOJ not merely botched the Clinton investigation – but the preceding investigation into Russian corruption. Further this looks intentional rather than incompetent, and Mueller, Comey and Rosenstein were all part of it.

    We should not have people running or involved in political investigations who are themselves suspected of corrupting prior political investigations.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/two-senior-fbi-officials-on-clinton-trump-probes-exchanged-politically-charged-texts-disparaging-trump/2017/12/02/9846421c-d707-11e7-a986-d0a9770d9a3e_story.html?tid=ss_tw&utm_term=.5c244ab386be

    • December 2, 2017 11:28 pm

      Pretty interesting. The FBI, far from being the “jewel in the crown” of law enforcement, appears to be quite tawdry and corrupt these days.

      And, they moved this guy into HR, after kicking him out of the investigations? What, so that he could look into sexual harassment allegations? Yikes.

      • December 2, 2017 11:36 pm

        I particularly like this part:

        “Among federal law enforcement officials, there is great concern that exposure of the texts they exchanged may be used by the president and his defenders to attack the credibility of the Mueller probe and the FBI more broadly, according to the people familiar with the matter.”

        Ya think? As if the Mueller probe needed any other attacks on its credibility…

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 2:28 am

        The standard we are supposed to use is

        The appearance of impropriaty.

        A judge, prosecutor or investigator must remove themselves from a case when there is the appearance of impropriety.

        Not actual impropriety.

        Sorry, Mueller never should have been given this role.
        No one with any connection of any kind to the investigations of Clinton and Russia during the Obama administration should have been allowed into this investigations.

        Just about the only person who has followed that guidance is Sessions.

        On Policy I disagree with him on nearly everything, but he has integrity.

        Mueller, Comey, Rosenstein do not, and there is reason to be dubious about McCabe.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 2:22 am

        Some things I learned about CIA director Brennan are applicable.

        When he first came to the CIA in the 60’s or 70’s he had a marxist past and barely got in.
        The CIA at the time was extremely politically conservative. But over time more people were coming from the left, and they brought more people from the left as they climber the ladder,
        and the older more conservative people retired. Brennan softened his left leaning over time, but never lost them.

        The left shift in government has been going on for a long time – it has progressed differently in different agencies, but we are very close to the point where the only conservatives in the federal government are:
        The staff of elected conservative politicians
        The political appointees of conservative presidents.

        Trump is the president of a government that is itself openly hostile to him in virtually every possible way.

        Pretty much everyone has started to notice that DOJ and FBI are practically actively thwarting the release of government records that would be beneficial to Trump.

        I would also note that the FBI’s reputation for competence took some very large hits over the past couple of decades. We are still periodically getting stories about corruption or incompetence in various crime labs accross the country resulting in overturning myriads of convictions.

        I think there are two in MA right now – where lab technicians were literally consuming drug evidence, high at work for years, and just faking the results.

        Well the first big story of this kind came from the FBI crime lab in the early Bush administration.

        A related matter arrose when the National Bureau of standards – I beleive at the request of the national chiefs of police produced a report and the state of police forensics.

        The objective was to bolster the use of forensics and to encourage the supreme court to weigh them more favoralbly.

        But the actually results were damning, and resulted in the supreme court increasing the ability to challenge expert testimony.

        Many areas of forensics that all of us think are extremely good have been found to be junk science.

        While it is possible to cause brain damage to babies by shaking them – it is NOT easy, Babies are resilient. There are still myriads of people – mostly women in prison for killing their baby who are mostly innocent – even if they did actually “shake” their babies.

        Bite impression evidence is nearly worthless. You MIGHT be able to exclude someone as a suspect, but you can not match a bite mark conclusively.
        And even excluding is dubious.

        Hair and fiber matching evidence is total crap. Again you can exclude – that is about it.
        You can say the carpet was green, or the perpitrator was blonde.

        Very high on the list of crap forensic that most everyone thinks is sacred is matching bullets.
        While not as bad as hair or fiber, or bite marks, matching bullets to a gun is not possible to anywhere near close to the degree needed for a conviction.

        Fingerprints – which have been used for over a century are frequently relying on as low as a 6 point match. That has a very high rate of false positives.

        DNA – using the tests that are currently being used – is represented as having 1 in a trillion chance of an exact match – the actual odds for the common tests, are only about 1:100000.

        But even there, that is from a purely random population sample.
        The odds of a false positive DNA match to a relative in some instances are as high as 60% or more. DNA can tell a jury that there is a 1:100000 chance that DNA that matches you came from a random stranger, but if other family members are also suspects, the odds tank.

        All of the above also presume best case lab work – and that is extremely uncommon.

        The largest single cause of failure at the FBI labs was confirmation Bias. Lab Technicians were not supposed to know the results that investigators were expecting. But they did, and this demonstrably skewed the results.

        BTW we are having exactly the same problem with drug sniffing dogs. A properly trained sniffing dog, with a well trained handler who fully trusts the dog has a very high success rate.

        But tests of real dogs and real police handlers produce abysmal results.
        One of the largest errors is false positives. When police are subjected to testing where in some percent of test there will be no drugs in the test vehicle – the dogs nearly always get that right, but the expectation of the officer that there are drugs to be found is so high – that even in tests where they know there will be no drugs, they make the dogs check again and again, and one of two things occurs – the dog grasps that its handler is unhappy – and false alerts, or the handler reads an alert when there was none – both results are false positives.
        The rate of false positives in testing of police/sniffer dogs is astronomical – and the fundamental problem is not the dog.

        Anyway Lord Acton remains correct

        Power corrupts – even at the FBI.

        And federal employment is just a gigantic sinacure for the left. You can not expect the absence of political bias from ANY federal agency.

      • Jay permalink
        December 3, 2017 4:40 pm

        “Trump is the president of a government that is itself openly hostile to him in virtually every possible way.”

        tRUMP is Prez of a nation that is itself openly hostile to him in every way.
        Deservedly.

        President Trump Job Approval Gallup Approve 34, Disapprove 61 Disapprove +27

        He’s a disease.
        He’s a despicable liar of the worst sort
        Disrespectful of others like no previous president
        A fool and an embarrassment to the nation.
        Why wouldn’t patriotic bureaucrats in the FBI or elsewhere despise him.

        I watched the English movie Hot Fuzz last night on Netflix. It’s an outlandish but entertaining cop spoof film about a former London constable sent to a sleepy British Village where a series of grisly murders take place. One of the most ghoulish killings takes place in a churchyard, when a pointed steeple on a high wall of the medieval church is shoved loose, and falls…

        This one:

        And what immediately sprung to my mind was: humm, how secure is the Capital Dome? Ten minutes later I got an emailed message from my New York friend (we often alert each other what were watching that night so we can chat afterwards) and he had a similar obvervation, his ‘fitting finish’ was with the letter T from a Trump Tower sign.

        Get it? tRUMP IS THE MOST HATED president by the MOST number of American citizens in our lifetime. And again, deservedly.

      • December 3, 2017 5:19 pm

        Jay, why do you think we have Trump as President today? Why do you think he is doing the things he is doing? Forgetting the terrible candidates the democrats chose, look at the past few years. “W” was a man of higher moral standards. The left, after 911, tore into him for years and made him out to look like a fool. John McCain, a national hero, was not treated much better. And Romney was attacked for his religion, his wealth and many other issues. All of these men were of higher ethical and moral standards than any other candidate that ran, including the bitch that lied about everything.

        So along comes Trump and he take pages out of Saul Alinsky’s book and uses those tactics to get elected and continue after election.
        Examples
        1.”The job of the organizer is to maneuver and bait the establishment so that it will publicly attack him as a ‘dangerous enemy”. How much is Trump baiting the left and moderate establishment and what are they saying about him.
        2. Alinsky believed that many Americans were living in frustration and despair, worried about their future, and ripe for a turn to radical social change, to become politically active citizens. He believed at the time that Americans would turn to the right and wanted to stop that movement. Trump, on the other hand found the movement left and adopted Alinsky’s plans to stop that and move the forgotten middle class back to the right. He was elected on that effort.
        3. Freedom Works, a right wing group associated with many Tea Party groups gives Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals to its top leadership members. And shortened rules are provided to membership.

        I do not support Trump. I do not like his way of doing things. But I have much more dislike for Pelosi/Shumer politics that I have for a big mouth blow hard that is making people dislike him through his brash behavior. Lies. I don’t care because no one else cares. No one cared when Clinton lied about Benghazi. No one cared when Obama lied about targeting organizations by the IRS. No one cared when he lied about Ferguson and what took place leading to the riots. No one cared about fast and furious when border patrol officers lost their lives. DID YOU?? Did you post pages of comments when that happened like you are with Trump?A lot of noise came out of congress and that was all it was. Nothing happened! So I could care less about Trumps behavior.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 6:42 pm

        Good point Ron.

        When you cry wolf constantly – no one believes you when there is an actual wolf.

        I do actually wish for almost any of the other GOP candidates as president.
        But that is not what occurred.

        I do not think Trump has particularly good character, nor do I like his style.
        I oppose some of his policies – but that would be true for all candidates.

        But character no longer matters – and it is the left that has brought that about – by trashing the character of good people AND by standing behind democrats of bad character.

        Many of other either do not beleive the left any more.
        Or we do not care if what they say is true.

        Roy Moore appears to be about to get elected.
        I know that, I understand it. But at the same time – how did we get here ?

        I have also predicted that Sheriff Joe Arapio may well get elected tot he Senate from AZ.

        Before Jay spews foam all over me – I do not WANT either of those.
        But they are likely.
        Republicans will deserve blame for putting forth repugnant candidates.
        But Democrats will deserve as much blame for making that possible.

        The problem with the politics of the left is that it loses effect.

        I am not interested in a competition between Schumer, Pelosi and Trump for worst slimeball.
        Just clean house.

        Jay cites Trump’s approval rating – that of democrats as a whole is almost 10 points BELOW Trump’s and Republicans 10 points below that.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 5:57 pm

        Trump likely is the most hated president possibly every – or atleast since Lincoln.
        I am not exactly sure why those on the left who constantly preach tolerance would be celebrating their hatred of Trump.

        The left has made it absolutely clear that a large portion of them are vile hate filled people.
        The fact that they hate the person they lost to is not surprising.

        Approval ratings are not “hate measures”.

        Trumps approval rating was about where it is right now when he was elected.

        I know you do not seem to comprehend this – but it is highly likely he is going to be re-elected.

        You can jump up and down and froth as you wish. But the left and the media have spent about two years with the most brutal campaign of hate ever – and he was still elected, and nothing much has changed.

    • Jay permalink
      December 3, 2017 4:54 pm

      From Priscillas link: “The people discussing the matter did not further describe the political messages between Strzok and Page.”

      So you don’t know what they specifically said. This was during the campaign, right?
      Did they say trump was a “Kook who was unfit for office?” If so, should Lindsay Graham be removed from any deliberations concerning trump in the future?

      Shouldn’t they have been promoted, for astute judgement?
      Hopefully the Dems will take over and do that.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 6:28 pm

        You are right – we do not know what was said – because the FBI will not provide the texts to congress despite their having been subpeoned by both the house and senate.

        Further these texts STARTED over 3 years ago, there are purportedly ALOT of them.
        They are not merely Anti-Trump, but there are also Pro-Clinton tweets.

        I do not care if these government employees are anti-trump and pro-clinton.

        I do care that Strzok particularly was a high ranking FBI investigator involved in three different key investigations while he had expressed strong biases for or against the targets of the investigation.

        We all know that the FBI interviews of Clinton and her staff were royally botched.

        They were not recorded, Mills as an example was allowed to serve as Clinton’s lawyer for those – despite the fact that she was a potential target for the investigation.

        Had Flynn been given the kind of kid glove/incompetent Treatment from the FBI that Clinton received – he would still be NSA. That should be clear to even you.

        Absent both a transcript of the Kislyak calls and a transcript of the FBI interview, there would be no evidence of misrepresentation – what he said is so close to what actually occured.

        I have no idea what “should Lindsey Graham be removed from future trump deliberations”: means – though if Graham called Trump a Kook – possibly.
        But I do not expect any senate deliberations on Trump.

        FBI or DOJ personal who demonstrate bias – either in favor of or in opposition to the target’s of their investigation should not be part of those investigations.
        That is called corruption, not astute judgement.

      • Jay permalink
        December 3, 2017 7:44 pm

        “They are not merely Anti-Trump, but there are also Pro-Clinton tweets.”

        How many Anti-Clinton tweets and emails and conversation were there?
        There wouldn’t have been much Pro or Anti Trump before he was running.
        But Before the last campaign there was much Anti Clinton sentiment in all the bureaus.
        Traditionally, law and order agents leaned Republican. Anti Clinton rumors popped up frequently. Are you deaf dumb and blind to that?

        In other words, you’re projecting from one reported incident this summer. And as usual you extrapolated that into BS LAND. Which is why I have ZERO faith in anything you say.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 8:53 pm

        “How many Anti-Clinton tweets and emails and conversation were there?”

        Can you read ? We do not know. The FBI has not provided this information – despite the fact that both the house and senate have subpeoned it and much more for many months.

        It has been represented by the FBI that there were extensive political texts between the two over an almost two year period.

        I do not even know how the press knows this – except that sa Sazrok was demoted alomost certainly someone in the FBI or DOJ reported him, and possibly also leaked this to the press.
        Or the press noted the demotion and inquired.

        “There wouldn’t have been much Pro or Anti Trump before he was running.”

        You still do not grasp that this STARTED while Sazork was a lead investigator in the Clinton Email mess. Sazork is on of the agents who interviewed Clinton and her staff – without a record of the interview, which is not normal.

        “But Before the last campaign there was much Anti Clinton sentiment in all the bureaus.”
        Again READ. The texts were PRO-CLINTON.

        “Traditionally, law and order agents leaned Republican.”
        True – decades ago. It was also once true of the CIA. Neither are true today.

        Traditionally an FBI agent would get fired purely for having an extra-marital affair.

        “Anti Clinton rumors popped up frequently. Are you deaf dumb and blind to that?”
        This is not a rumor. This is actual evidence of bias.

        If you find evidence of an investigating agent demonstrated actual Bias against Clinton – they to should be removed from the investigation.

        “In other words, you’re projecting from one reported incident this summer. And as usual you extrapolated that into BS LAND. Which is why I have ZERO faith in anything you say”
        Nope. I am not projecting anything. Some of the information is from the FBI – we know that Szorak was removed from the Trump investigation, and that he was effectively demoted.

        I beleive at this time the FBI has admitted to the texts, that they started about 2 years ago and continued through the extramarital relationship.
        But it has not provided further details.

        What we do not know, we do not know because the FBI is not providing it.

        There are all kinds of possibilities – but there is only one truth.
        The FBI is not sharing that – though inevitably they are going to be forced to.

        Just as they finally had to release the 39 emails sent immediately after the Lynch/Clinton tarmac meeting, where the FBI and DOJ were furiously looking to find who told the press that the meeting happened.

        Can you say “cover up” ?

      • December 3, 2017 11:23 pm

        Dave very interesting. I have not been keeping up with all that is taking place. Government anti liberty overload.

        Does anyone really think much has changed in the FBI since Hoover ruled the roost? The only thing I think that has changed is the names and faces. The rest is just as corrupt as it was when JEH was director.

        And one only needs to look at Muller to understand what I am talking about. Even though he is not currently FBI, he IS FBI! Total overreach, intimidation and “blackmail”. And how much is it costing Americans for this lynching.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 1:35 am

        I am reminded of Mark Anthony’s eulogy for Julius Caesar

        We were told Comey was an honorable man.
        We were told Mueller wa an honorable man.
        We were told Rosenstein was an honorable man.

        I honestly believed this. People I respected – who are now criticizing all of the above were once telling us these guys were all honorable.

        Yet all three of these played a role in slow walking and hiding an investigation into Russian corruption of american businessmen from congress to prevent it from jephardizing the Uranium One deal.

        Some of the politics of the left on this has been completely nuts.

        We are told by the left to be fearful of Russia – Putin is evil, and Russia is very nearly the threat it was during the cold war.

        We are told this by the same people who were trying to normalize relations with Russia, who were in bed with Russian oligarchs, who were collecting half million dollar speaking fees, whbo were hiding acts of Russian malfeasance from congress and the public, and then suddenly after they lost the election, they turned on a dime, turned on Russia. Radically changed US foreign policy with respect to both Russia and Israel in the last month of a lame duck presidency,

        And these are the people who want to tell is Trump is evil and in bed with Russia.

        One of the problems that Jay and Roby and the left do not get – is that you do not have to like Trump in the slightest, to easily reach the conclusion that They, the left are much worse.

        I did not vote for Trump – but I was never voting for Clinton.
        But even so – Clinton has managed to become far MORE repugnant since the election.
        It is increasingly obvious that everything bad beleived about her before the election was true and only a part of the story. It is becoming self evident that the fix was in on the investigations of clinton from the begining.

        It is also evident that the “deep state” is in the tank for the left to the max.

        There is video of Trump in January dealing with the Flynn resignation, repeatedly saying that he was told that Flynn lied in his reports and he read the reports and could not find anything wrong and had his lawyer read the reports and could not find anything wrong, and that essentially he had to have it very carefully explained to him exactly how these reports were misstatements – and he still did not really see it as significant – but Sally Yates is telling him this is not good, and Mike Pence is telling him this is not good, But Flynn is a good man, and ….
        While Trump never mentions lying to the FBI – the supposed ly is the same.
        Regardless, Trump never seems to get why the discrepancy in Flynn’s reports was significant.

        I recall at the time thinking much the same.
        Now we know a whole lot more.
        Now I see this quite differently.
        Now this is looking much more like an orchestrated plot by the Obama administration to knee cap the incoming administration.

        I would suggest something else to the left. All of this has consequences.

        I posted here that Trump should have pardoned Clinton as he took office.
        It was the right thing to do.

        I do not feel that way anymore.
        I want a thorough investigation of lots of crap that went on in the prior administration.
        I want the members of the Obama administration held to exactly the same standards they are holding Trump’s people to.
        I want to see alot of former Obama staffers in jail.

        I am getting really angry about this – and yes, Trump is completely correct – this witch hunt.

        But I do nto care if Mueller actually manages to “get Trump” – if we get to conduct the same witch hunt by the same standards with the prior administration as targets.

        I want Mueller and Comey and Rosenstein investigated and probably indicted for covering up and slow walking Russian corruption to protect the U1 deal from 2010 through to 2015.

        I want just about everybody in the FBI and DOJ associated with the U1 investigation, the Clinton Foundation investigation, and the Clinton email investigation sacked.

        I want Bill Clinton and AG Lynch indicted for obstruction of justice.
        As well as Abedin, Mills and a few other Clinton staffers.

        And I am barely started, I have not touched on The IRS mess, or the unmasking, or the continued leaking – nearly all of which has been false.

        We have Jay and Roby cheering because Flynn has plead.

        What is increasingly obvious is that Flynn actually is a decent person – that Trump was right, that Comey should have left him alone.

        I think that the GOP deeply regrets capitulating to Mueller’s investigation.

        I probably won’t get any of what I want.

        But this stuff always comes back arround.

        To Roby and Jay – expect absolutely ZERO sympathy why you are whining because someone you think is decent is being investigated and forced into a guilty plea to protect their family over some meaningless misstatement that was not material.

        We listened to the left rant about going after Clinton as a witch hunt – but we have actual lie after lie, not inconsequential incongruities – which is not only the issue with Flynn, but pretty much all this Trump “lies” crap – fine, I admit, his 140 character tweets do not absolutely accurately present every detail. But most of us Read Flynn’s statements and the facts and say – sounds correct to me. We read Trump’s tweets and the facts and while Trump often does nto know when to shut up, and does nto express himself as if he is testifying in court, still he is basically correct.

        When we say Clinton lied – we mean lied – like flat out lied.
        She lied under oath to congress, she lied in documents provided to the court in the FOIA lawsuits, she lied to the public.

        One of the things that gets me the most about Clinton was her scape goating of Nakoula Basseley Nakoula.

        This guy is a tiny player. Insignificant. He made a video that had something like 400 total hits across the world. Before Benghazi no one in libya had seen it.

        Yet, Clinton – knowing this was not true blamed that video for ben ghazi.
        And then promised the families of the dead from Ben Ghazi that she would get Nakoula which she did. He ended up in Jail.

        While he is not some super reputable guy – he never asked to be part of something that large.
        He did not ask to be the target of the Secretary of State.

        Most of these people – Trump, Flynn, Clinton etc.
        They know what they are in. They volunteered for this mess.

        Nakoula is just some little grifter who got caught up in something huge.

        Anyway, I am reminded of Matt 18:21-35 The parable of the unforgiving servant.

        Clinton and the left get the same treatment they gave others.
        They get held to the same standards.

        If that takes down Trump – I can live with that, because it is also going to jail half the obama administration.

        I have told you many times that Trump’s election was the consequence of your idiotic identity politics – but you remain clueless.

        You seem to think that because you or even some of the rest of us, do not like Trump, that it is OK to brake the rules to get him. That after listening to 18 months of nonsense that Clinton was somehow innocent for
        hiding here official emails from everyone – because get a clue, she did not have a private email server because it went well with the china. The entire purpose of the private email server was to HIDE what she was doing as secretary of state – from the public, from FOIA requests, and from the government itself. That alone was a violation of the law – though not necescarily a crime.
        Regardless, she was breaking the law – and she knew it.
        And she stonewalled and lied – under oath, and pulled every trick in the book and destroyed evidence that was under subpena and court order, and she sent boatloads of classified information unsecurely – again in violation of the law.

        Do you guys really think that anything that Papadolouis or Flynn has plead to is more than a tiny fraction as bad as what we know Clinton did ?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 8:58 pm

        Here is what CNN has to say – maybe you think they have some credibility – particularly when they are reporting what the FBI had to say.

        http://www.cnn.com/2017/12/02/politics/fbi-agent-removed-trump-investigation/index.html

      • December 3, 2017 11:35 pm

        Dave three comments:
        1. Kind of bad when Clinton News Network reports something this damaging to the investigation.
        2. Sessions just needs to keep his mealy mouth shut. He is about as incompetent as a pediatric physician trying to do intracranial brain surgery.
        3. How bad is it when the IRS does not want to participate ( Last comment in article)

  29. dhlii permalink
    December 2, 2017 10:41 pm

    Wow! there is a very strong correlation between your IQ and your support for free speech absolutism.

    • December 2, 2017 11:10 pm

      I dunno. Millennials favor free speech more than moderates? And if high-IQ people top the list of free-speech absolutists, why do so many college professors and students favor limits on free speech?

      • December 2, 2017 11:21 pm

        Yes, very odd . Liberals are certainly not free-speech absolutists either, although I could see how they might THINK that they are, since they favor free speech for themselves…….

      • December 3, 2017 12:07 am

        It would be nice to know what the question(s) were to develop these results. For instance, you could get a very different result based on.
        1. Do you believe conservative speakers should be free to address the college students.
        or
        2. Do you believe speakers should be free to address the college students.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 2:38 am

        Google the title at the top of the graphic,
        that should lead a published article with a link to the study.
        And that should provide you the methodology.

        I suspect the ideological differences and the age differences have very low statistical significance.

        While I will guess that IQ correlates strongly – i.e. the results graphed show something meaningful.

        But you can read the methodology – I did not. Maybe I am wrong.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 1:43 am

        There is no catagory for libertarians – who are going to go through the roof on free speech.
        That is practically a tautology.

        I have addressed differences in IQ between conservatives and progressives before.
        Whether the left has higher IQ’s than the right depends on where libertarians are grouped.
        When Libertarians are grouped with the right – conservative IQ’s are about 4 points higher than those of the left. When libertarains are not grouped with either the right or left, conservatives tend to run about 1 point lower than the left. Given the relative size of the left, the right and libertarians that suggests a 20 point average IQ difference between libertarains and the left or right which are nearly the same. BTW the work of Haidt and several others tends to confirm that.

        I would also suggest looking more deeply at the methodology of the study if you are concerned about narrow issues like why moderates are low – my guess would be their definition of moderate.

        What strikes me is that by ideology, and by age group the variance is not that large.
        But the IQ correlation is incredible. More than even I expected.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 1:47 am

        I would also note that liberal is a basterized word.

        As has been raised repeatedly – the Free Speech movement in the US began in the 60’s among liberals at the University of California Berkeley, and it it is being killed in the US by “liberals” at the University of California Berkeley.

        The left is less frequently using the term liberal and more frequently using the term progresive and I think that is more accurate.

        The 60’s left – for all its problems was more liberal. The modern left is not liberal.
        And to an increasing extent does not self identify as liberal.

      • December 3, 2017 12:01 am

        Rick you are making the leap that college professors and students are high IQ individuals. Have you been on campus lately? I would argue that IQ is something lacking in that environment, along with common sense on most campuses, especially the elitist liberal institutions.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 1:34 am

        “I dunno. Millennials favor free speech more than moderates? And if high-IQ people top the list of free-speech absolutists, why do so many college professors and students favor limits on free speech?”

        Not my results – you can look up the survey – I think googling free speech absolitism and demography will get you there.

        With specific respect to professors – I think the problem is your assumption that college professors are high IQ. While they are not low, they are overrated.

        Academics are not risk takers – high risk aversion does not correlated well with high IQ.

        One very strong factor correlating with IQ is vocabulary. By a significant factor the largest vocabularies are demonstrated by businessmen – particularly those very near the top.

        Another High IQ attribute of bussinessmen that is rare among academics is the breadth fo the scope of their knowledge. In myriads of areas today our modern culture encourages increasingly high levels of specialization as a root to success – and this works. even moderate IQ people can become valuable experts in very narrow areas.

        Academics show very high aptitude in very narrow fields. Many tend to be ignorant of the entire world outside their field.

        If you think of IQ is like water – you can take the same amount of water and spread it thin and broad in a pan, or very tall in a narrow glass.

        Really high IQ people know alot about alot. Academics demands knowing alot about a little.

        Business demands knowing alot about alot. There are a few other professions that work that way, but not many, and with few exceptions we are moving towards pushing people to have tall thin knowledge rather than shallower and broader knowledge.
        .
        I would also note that IQ is also about logic skills.
        Really high IQ people can go into almost any field, learn a minimal amount about that field and still perform incredibly well in it – because excellent logic skills, plus a small amount of knowledge is equal to large amounts of knowledge.

        IQ is not a measure of knowledge, it is a measure of processing power – logical skills.
        We supliment IQ with knowledge to make ourselves more valuable – arguably we can not increase our IQ, but we can increase our knowledge.

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 3, 2017 5:45 pm

        @ Rick: Both parties are hypocrites. When you goose the gander, you come up with a clean finger. When the other side gooses the gander we yell “look at that finger, it ain’t clean”.
        Free speech, that is for our side, not yours.
        Telling the truth. That’s for the same people that pay taxes: the little people.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 8:27 pm

        Amen

        One comment I saw elsewhere asked

        If lying to the FBI is a crime,
        what is it when the FBI lies to us ?

        JW has finally received a collection of 39 emails that were sent between DOJ and FBI immediately after the Bill Clinton/AG Lynch Tarmac meeting.

        ALL of these emails are about ONE thing.
        Finding out who leaked the meeting to the press with some explict references to “getting” them.

        Can someone explain to me why an after the fact leak of “unscheduled” meeting between two public figures is within the scope of the DOJ or FBI to investigate ?

        And why was this kept secret for so long ?
        Inqiuiries were made for FBI records almost immediately after the meeting.
        It has taken nearly 3 years and an FOIA lawsuit to pry this out.
        Further the FBI redacted the crap out of the emails – so that it is not possible to determine the identity of the DOJ and FBI people seeking out the “leak”

        Does anyone doubt that absent a “leak” we would never have found out about this ?

        BTW Hillary Clinton has a record of punishing those who “Out” her misconduct.

        The IG that gave a less than favorable report on the Clinton private email server essentially ended his carreer and was forced into retirement.

    • December 2, 2017 11:59 pm

      So Dave, please explain how this relates to inappropriate sexual contact. I am totally missing the point.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 2:34 am

        The only issue we are discussing any more is sexual misconduct ?

        There is a whole serious of posts on Flynn – I am not aware of any allegations of sexual misconduct regarding Flynn.

        Separately, I honestly find the sexual misconduct discussion boring.

        While there might be some conflicts between us.

        I do not think anyone here things sexual assualts should not be prosecuted.

        I think most of us think that egregious sexual harrassment should result in being fired or worse.

        The areas of disagreement are:

        Should govenrment be involved in sexual harrassment ?

        What constitutes sexual harassment ?

        Have we gone too far ? Or not far enough ?

  30. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 2:41 am

  31. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 2:42 am

  32. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 2:43 am

  33. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 2:44 am

  34. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 3:09 am

    The relevant exchange is pretty far into this transcript of an Obama State Department Press briefing

    Seach for the text starting

    “No, I got just one more.”

    The Obama administration was well aware of Flynn’s communications with Kislyak and had no problem with them.

    As others have stated contact between incoming administration offficials and foreign states is not unsual and not a violation of the logan act or any other law.

    https://2009-2017.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2017/01/266932.htm

    • Jay permalink
      December 3, 2017 9:15 am

      “The Obama administration was well aware of Flynn’s communications with Kislyak and had no problem with them.”

      WRONG to ‘no problem with them.’
      As their WARNING to t-Lump not to hire Flynn shows.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 9:59 am

        Did you bother to actually read the state department press conference transcript I provided from the state departments web site ?

        The state department:

        Knew Flynn and other incoming Trump administration members were in contact with Kislyak specifically and foreign leader generally and specifically stated that was normal and to be expected.

  35. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 3:12 am

    Jay;

    Here is a criticism of Trump I can actually agree with fully.

    https://beinglibertarian.com/donald-trumps-presidency-meeting-libertarian-ends/

  36. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 3:35 am

    Different views on the tax revenue effects of the “tax cut”.

    I am not making a prediction – beyond: Everyone is wrong.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/454261/jcts-dynamic-score-misses-mark-economic-growth-tax-plan?utm_campaign=trueanthem&utm_content=5a239a9d04d3014c7e27090a&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter

  37. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 3:40 am

    On political “cohesion”

    http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2016/11/cohesionists_un.html

  38. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 4:01 am

  39. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 4:05 am

    NYT on sexual harrassment.

  40. Pat Riot permalink
    December 3, 2017 7:36 am

    Hello Priscilla! You said: “But, I think that we have lost perspective on what types of behavior are “small potatoes,” best able to be handled on a personal level, and what types of behavior are more serious.”

    And Dave you commented you were in favor of people handling their own situations on a personal level whenever possible, rather than going to intermediaries (and especially leaving your forever-despised GOV’T out of it as much as possible).

    Yes, people learning how to handle situations on their own, when they can, especially “small potatoes” before they become bigger potatoes, is an important aspect of this sexual misconduct fever that I think all rational people can agree on, and it is an important part of many of our societal/cultural issues.

    But Dave, your beloved free markets are flawed and always have been, and this sexual misconduct firestorm helps prove that. People are being fired by companies just for accusations because the companies fear losing money, either by customers going away or via lawsuits, etc. The Prairie Home Companion guy is a sad example of this I think. This “social justice by market fear” thing (for lack of better description) opens doors for mob hysteria. For every three decent people with a laptop and an opinion there are two people with crazy bad ideas and one delinquent with bad intentions in exactly that ratio (based on no statistics whatsoever, just getting a point across).

    Free markets are powerful economic engines, but they are far from perfect. Government is usually slow and inefficient and imperfect, but in some ways it is essential for holding society together at the seams. Human beings are flawed, and so we need as many good ones as possible to sort things out with good sense. This makes us important. It validates us. We are needed, in big ways and in myriad little ways. Power to the People!

    • Roby permalink
      December 3, 2017 9:00 am

      Oh my! I just bet myself a cherry pie on the number of replies That poke at free market dogma will yield. I am off to the store to buy it now (cherry pie). Run for shelter. Hide the women and children. Warm up your word count function.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 9:55 am

        “Oh my! I just bet myself a cherry pie on the number of replies That poke at free market dogma will yield. I am off to the store to buy it now (cherry pie). Run for shelter. Hide the women and children. Warm up your word count function.”

        I have only two issues with Pat’s “attack”.

        The presumption that government would do better is absurdly false.

        In this particular instance I do not think the market has gotten it wrong.
        There is no one who has been canned thus far that I think was canned unjustly.

        Regardless, I agree that people get it wrong sometimes – quite often.
        They get it wrong outside of government, and they get it wrong inside of government.
        The latter is far more harmful than the former.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 3, 2017 9:46 am

      Of course free markets are not perfect. Have I claimed otherwise ?
      Government is not perfect, nor is any other process that involves humans.

      Your criticism is that markets do not acheive what is not possible.
      True, but not significant.

      They are however less prone to error that government, more likely to self correct, and less likely to cause disproportionate harm.

      Further in the current instances I think the markets have gotten it right. None of these figures who have lost their jobs engaged in conduct that the overwhelming majority of people think is appropriate.

      While I accept that over reaction is possible, I do not see it as occuring right now.

      The sexual misconduct firestorm is nescescary.
      Companies are firing people who have engaged in deplorable conduct – for fear of losing money.
      Their fears are likely legitimate – as alot of us are pissed about this.

      No, Keillor is NOT an example. First you are presuming that MPR does nto have knowledge of more misconduct than has been made public. It is highly likely in all of these cases that employers are aware of allegations that have not yet been made public. Second Keillor is like Cosby – in that he brand is tied to his public wholesome character. His conduct destroyed his brand. MPR did not do that Keillor did.

      While I do not see this as “social justice” at the same time – if actual social justice warriers can accomplish their goals through markets rather than by mangling our laws – I have zero problems with that.

      With respect to your non-statistical statistics – absolutely.

      In 1960 the market would have destroyed a major media figure if it came out that they were gay
      today it would destroy those who discriminated against them.

      The attitudes of people are wrong and change over time.
      We do not want the bad attitudes of one era encoded in law and imposed by force in another.

      Mistakes in peoples attitudes will correct faster over time in markets than in law.

      We do not disagree that government is essential.
      But we disagree over the scope of what is essential from government.

      I absolutely do not want government handling the things markets handle badly – because they are by definition WORSE if handled by government.

      Look at the recent Lindsay Shepard mess at Wilford Laurrie in Canada.

      As Jordan Peterson noted WL is in theory in deep shit over this.
      Not only according to canadian law is WL responsible for any harm that might occur as a consequence of Shepards purportedlly transphobic lecture, but they can actually be held responsible for mysogyny and racism in their efforts to “correct” Shepard.

      As Peterson notes – and history – in both Canada and the UK have demonstrated these types of laws have more frequently been used to supress the wpeach of the weak in favor of the powerful.

      Human beings are flawed, and we actually know that Government is a magnet for particular types of flawed people.

      You can not seem to grasp that flawed people with more power are more dangerous than flawed people with less power.

      “If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.”
      James Madison Federalist 51

  41. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 9:03 am

    McCarthy as always is excellent.

    Though his suggestion that Trump appoint a SC to investigate collusion in the Iran Nuke deal is a near perfect counter foil to this the more interesting observation that is coming from this Flynn situation is further indications of misconduct by the Obama administration during the transition.

    I think that McCarthy is likely incorrect and that Flynn could not have avoided the FBI interview,
    but we would have to know more about how it was represented to him.

    I have also addressed the claim that Flynn “lied” in that interview. The discrepancy in Flynn’s remarks does NOT meet the legal requirements for criminal misrepresentation.

    Innaccuracy is not sufficient.
    Further the misrepresentation must be material to what was being investigated.

    But more important the agents questioned Flynn about something that they knew, that was not a crime and therefore had no purpose besides entrapment.

    It is increasingly evident that the Obama administration was deliberately targeting and investigating an incoming administration during the transition.

    Even the UN security council resolution regarding Israel and the sanctions against Russia is damning to Obama.
    The Obama administration was a lame duck administration attempting to advance significant foreign policy initiatives at odds with the incoming administration in the last days of its term.
    While legal that is unheard of. As Obama famously stated – elections have consequences, and one of the consequences is that US foreign policy was changed – and that occured on Nov. 7 2016 when the people chose a different president. Not in January when Trump was inaugurated.

    The left is free to obstruct Trump to the extent they are able – but NOT using the federal government to do so.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/454293/robert-mueller-trump-russia-investigation-michael-flynn-obama-administration-foreign-policy-israel

    • Jay permalink
      December 3, 2017 9:28 am

      “his suggestion that Trump appoint a SC to investigate collusion in the Iran Nuke deal is a near perfect counter foil..”

      T-Lump will not do anything to hurt the Russians like that.
      If he wanted to, he could CANCEL the deal now.
      Why hasn’t he?

      And if the disrepency in Flynn’s remark doesn’t reach the legal requirements, why would Flynn take a plea deal?

      How you repeatedly arrive at nonsensical conclusions never ceases to amaze…

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 10:18 am

        Aparently you can not read.

        the IRAN NUKE DEAL – not the Russia Uranium One deal.

        Though separately – why is it you presume Trump would not hurt Russia, given that he already has ?

        He has cut Russia out of the mideast, he litterally threatened to have US pilots shoot down Russians if they did not get out of the way in Syria, His missle attack on Assad so angered Russia they sent they most modern Frigate to the Mediterainian to intimidate US warships.

        He has done everything possible to favor US domestic energy production which is a knife in the back of Russia which has been in a long recession caused by low energy prices.

        Why would Flynn take the plea deal ?

        Trivial – people take plea deals all the time – even provably innocent people.

        Fighting Mueller and winning – even with a 90% certainty of winning would have been ridiculously expensive and even if the risk was low the cost of being wrong was high.

        I pretty much agree with McCarthy – this plea is a sign of weakness on Muellers part – not strength.

        Contrary to many of the pundits – Mueller’s leverage over Flynn is small and defined by the plea agreement. It would be prosecutorial misconduct to add additional charges after a plea agreement has been reached – it is likely also a 5th amendment violation.
        Flynn has constrained Mueller’s leverage on him and his son to this single issue.
        So long as Flynn meets what the courts perceive as his obligation to cooperate, he faces no further liability. If as an example in cooperating Flynn refuses to provide what Mueller wants – Mueller would actually have to prove that what he wants actually exists and that Flynn is capable of providing it.

        We have been digging into this for almost two years now.
        WE have found out next to nothing that we did not know near the start, and the little new we have learned is FAR less than would be expected if there was actual criminal conspiracy.

        Regardless, with few exceptions I am mirroring two prominent left leaning criminal and civil rights attorney’s, and a former US attorney. Thus far you have cited a bunch of inconsequential law professors – who to my knowledge have never tried a criminal case.

  42. Jay permalink
    December 3, 2017 9:40 am

    And then there’s Schlump’s slip of the tweet:

    “Trump tweeted Saturday: “I had to fire General Flynn because he lied to the Vice President and the FBI. He has pled guilty to those lies. It is a shame because his actions during the transition were lawful. There was nothing to hide!”

    “It’s unclear why Trump would cite lying to the FBI as a reason for firing Flynn. Doing so suggests the president knew at the time that Flynn had done something that is against the law, and therefore the investigation could not be as frivolous as he’s been portraying.

    It’s also unclear how he would know that, if information about Russian contacts had not reached him, as he has been implying in his own defense.”

    https://apnews.com/de5d6aa60b1048188d31cdb3c33ba5e5

    • Jay permalink
      December 3, 2017 9:51 am

    • dhlii permalink
      December 3, 2017 10:43 am

      Still Clueless. And horribly innaccurate.

      The communications between Flynn and Kislyak occured in late December 2016 – two months after the election, at a time when Flynn was the presumptive incoming NSA.

      Not only was Trump aware of them, but The Obama State department was aware of them, as was Pence.

      What Trump, Pence were not aware of and Flynn should have been, is that communications with Kislyak were being monitored.

      Flynn did not lie to Trump or Pence or anyone about communicating with Kislyak.
      Everyone including the public knew about that.

      He misrepresented the content of the exchange with Kislyak.
      Personally I think the misrepresntation was insignificant.

      There are purportedly 4 separate “lies” by Flynn. Every single one of them devolves to Flynn did not answer in detail.

      As an example Flynn noted that Kislyak raised sanctions and that he answered non-committally.
      The transcripts reveal that he asked the Russians to do as little of nothing as possible.

      The “lie” is “noncommitally” is not exactly the same as asking the Russians to do nothing.
      That is very close to a distinction without a difference.
      Regardless, it is not a distinction that is going to hold up in court.

      I would suggest reading the law on false statements.

      Though honestly it does not matter, If you want to send Flynn to jail for this – fine. Clinton and her staff get adjacent cells for even more egregious falsifications.

      We have Clinton and staff making self contradictory statements – to congress under oath, to the FBI, and in sworn pleadings in the FOIA cases that are still ongoing.

      The only part of Trump’s tweet that is not 100% consistent with remarks a year ago, is the additon of the FBI to Trump’s list of people Flynn lied too.

      You do not seem to get Flynn was never accused of lying about talking with Kislyak.
      The accusation was that he misrepresented the content of those communications to Pence.

      Regarding your AP story:
      What is new ?

      We have the Comey memo’s regarding communications with Trump.
      As Comey reports them, they were not obstruction of justice nearly a year ago when this nonsensical claim was first trotted out. Nothing improves that.

      Further, the President of the United States can not “obstruct justice” by acting in a way that any part of the executive branch would be properly allowed to do.

      ALL executive powers – including the power to excercise prosecutorial discretion are vested in the president. Trump could ORDER Comey to drop the Flynn matter and it would not be obstruction.

      Nixon obstructed justice by secretly and illegally arranging for payment of hush money to the watergate burglars. That is acts outside the powers of the executive branch.

      Regardless, though I think McCarthy was slightly less than serious about Trump ordering an investigation into Iran-Obama collusion regarding the Iran nuke deal. the point is still clear – this is political and it is far outside the norms, and if we are going to go there – then we need to go there for all – we need to conduct exactly the same kind of investigations of U1 and the Iran Nuke deal, using exactly the same standards of conduct.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 3, 2017 10:55 am

      How about the direct detailed oppinion of a prominent criminal and civil rights attorney who openly admits that he does not like and did not vote for Trump.

      Derschowitz simplifies the reasons that Flynn’s misstatements were not crimes – with one word.
      “Immaterial.”

      If you are interviewed by the FBI and you misstate what you had for breakfast – you have not committed a crime.

      http://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/362948-why-did-flynn-lie-and-why-did-mueller-charge-him-with-lying

  43. Roby permalink
    December 3, 2017 10:50 am

    Well, for a day or two after Rick posted an actual discussion, interesting, thoughtful, many sided, even lighthearted occurred.

    Now, back to the same old same old, The Dave Denialism Deluge. His same old points will be repetitiously ground into dust or four or six weeks without any conversions. His opinions are better than your opinions, ad nauseum. His extreme libertarianism will beat up your whatever.

    Thanks Pat and Mike (and Rick) for the brief moment of sunlight! See you again in 6 weeks I hope.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 3, 2017 11:14 am

      “Now, back to the same old same old, The Dave Denialism Deluge. His same old points will be repetitiously ground into dust or four or six weeks without any conversions. His opinions are better than your opinions, ad nauseum. His extreme libertarianism will beat up your whatever.”:

      Long rant about me – without ever actually citing whatever it is that has offended you.

      With respect to the sexual harrassment, sexual assualt topic – the range of oppinions here is fairly well confined. Whatever disagrements we have are small.

      Nor are they particularly partisan.

      The closest they come to “ideological” is that I see it as a mistake to expand governments role, while Pat and possibly Ron appear to want government to have a role – because they beleive that will end “the witch hunt”. Looking at Washington I think that argument is laughably false.

      Or are you complaining about topics other than the sexual harrament issue ?

      Are we back to the nonsense that “Dave posts more than I do – that is evil” ?

      Do you actually wish to discuss anything of substance ?

      I do.

      YOUR endless efforts to turn TNM away from a debate about issues, into a debate about you or I is repugnant.

      Do you have something to say about any topic at all – aside from ranting about other posters ?

      • Roby permalink
        December 3, 2017 11:52 am

        Everyone here wishes to discuss issues of substance.

        Alone among us, you wish to do something far different that is impossible:

        To Win. To dominate, to vanquish, to overwhelm, to bury other points of view and opinions.

        There is some of that on the part of other posters at times but nothing on the scale of your behavior. For you, winning isn’t everything, its the ONLY thing. You fail to grasp that you can’t win, can’t vanquish, and can’t bury other points of view on an internet blog, other than literally under numerical weight.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 12:54 pm

        “Everyone here wishes to discuss issues of substance.

        Alone among us, you wish to do something far different that is impossible:

        To Win. To dominate, to vanquish, to overwhelm, to bury other points of view and opinions.”

        Both wrong and likely projection, further you are returning to my point.
        No, you do not want to discuss issues. You want to discuss people – and not the people the issues are about, but specifically the posters you disagree with.

        “There is some of that on the part of other posters at times but nothing on the scale of your behavior. For you, winning isn’t everything, its the ONLY thing. You fail to grasp that you can’t win, can’t vanquish, and can’t bury other points of view on an internet blog, other than literally under numerical weight.”

        I do not care whether you are here to “win” or “Vanquish”, “overwhelm”, “bury”, ….
        If that is what you wish to do – fine. The only tool you have available to do so is words.
        Be my guest.

        But again you stupidly think you can read the minds of others – mine specifically, you claim to know what I want, regardless of the fact that I have openly said what I want and it is different.
        In your omniscience you are certain that I am lying.
        Worse still though you are wrong – it would be equally irrelevant even if you were right.

        This is a blog. Posts are words, nothing more. I can speak my mind, I can rant, I can try to persuade. I can do anything that can be done with words.

        But I can not “win” or “Vanquish”, “overwhelm”, “bury”, ….

        The only power words have is over the minds of others – and presumably you control your own mind. is persuasion.

        You are making the same stupid error that you and Jay keep making regarding Russia.

        You are presuming that it is possible to use words to compel someone else to do something they do not wish to do.

        The russian social media presence was inconsequential – but had it been enormous, its effect would still have been solely limited to persuasion. If by some change Russia changed the votes of many americans – they still freely made their own choose. Your claim devolves to not being willing to trust people to make the choice you want them to make, unless you have total control of what they see and hear.

        What we see and hear sometimes influences us. That is how it is SUPPOSED to work. But ultimately our own minds determine whether what we see and hear influences us.
        We do not lose our ability to make free choices as a consequence of greater data.

        The same is true of our posting here.
        If I posted 10 times what I do now – it would not diminish you ability to speak as you wish.

        BTW it is not me that fails to realize that this is an internet blog – that force does not exist, that the things you are claiming I want are impossible.

        Again lets assume you are completely right.
        You are saying I am chasing the impossible.
        SO ?

        Why does that concern you ?

        It is not that I can’t “win” or “Vanquish”, “overwhelm”, “bury”, …. that has you upset – that would be stupid, why bother ?
        It is that you are sufficiently delusional – just as you are with Russia to beleive that I can.

        That I can effect change that you do not want, and either that such change was not accomplished voluntarily, or that you have some right to prohibit it.

        I do not expect to “win” or “Vanquish”, “overwhelm”, “bury”, …. but if I manage to alter peoples free choices through words – So What ?

        If the Russian’s managed to do so through words – So What ?

        Why are you entitled to restrict what others see and hear ?

        In the event that people can be influenced – what right do you have to FORCIBLY prevent that ?

        You have the same power as I and as russia – to speak, with or without the hope of “influence”.

        Why do you persist in this incredibly stupid argument ?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 12:55 pm

        “You fail to grasp that you can’t win, can’t vanquish, and can’t bury other points of view on an internet blog, other than literally under numerical weight.”

        Numbers do not have weight.

      • Roby permalink
        December 3, 2017 1:44 pm

        “Why do you persist in this incredibly stupid argument ?”

        Well Dave, if you don’t like my posts, don’t read them.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 3:10 pm

        ““Why do you persist in this incredibly stupid argument ?”

        Well Dave, if you don’t like my posts, don’t read them.”

        Non sequitur.

      • Roby permalink
        December 3, 2017 3:34 pm

        “Well Dave, if you don’t like my posts, don’t read them.”
        Non sequitur.”

        Nonsense.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 4:05 pm

        Nope, just non-sequitur. or in english – “it does not follow”

      • Roby permalink
        December 3, 2017 4:09 pm

        Cept that is does. Your turn.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 5:48 pm

        Not in the real world.

      • Roby permalink
        December 3, 2017 6:50 pm

        “Not in the real world”

        The connection is perfectly simple . Show this conversation to someone in your family who reads and have them explain it to you.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 8:37 pm

        First: The actual post.

        [[[[[
        ““Why do you persist in this incredibly stupid argument ?”
        Well Dave, if you don’t like my posts, don’t read them.”
        Non sequitur

        ]]]]]

        Still do not grasp the rules of logic.

        It is irrelevant whether you think there is a connection.

        non-sequitur means the conclusion does not follow from the premise.

        In this instance that is true for several reasons.

        Because there is no connection – not even the kind you imply.
        Because one of the premises is a question – and therefore not a premise

        An analogy:

        Dave: Why do you hate tomatoes ?
        Roby: Well Dave, if you don’t like my posts, don’t read them.”
        Dave: Non sequitur

        It pretty much does not matter what the question is, you will always end up with your argument being a non-sequitur.

      • Roby permalink
        December 4, 2017 7:50 am

        “Because there is no connection – not even the kind you imply.”

        I wonder what would happen if your exhausted computer were to decide it was simply never going to process the words “there is no” again. What would you do? What would you do on TNM if for some supernatural reason your favorite “there is no” arguments were denied to you?

        Whether you know it or not, every time you use the phrase “there is no” people on TNM become surer than ever that there definitely is some of whatever you just denied exists!

        You were whining about my post. I answered, if you don’t like them don’t read. Now, if you think that feigning being the dullest knife in the box is a successful strategy, as long as you have the last word and win, then you will just continue on (and on and on) with that. Which will be humourous.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 2:03 pm

        You have expressly denied any interest or knowledge of philosophy.

        There is no reason for me to discuss with you hypothetical universes.

        As you suddenly seem to have taken to pondering such hypotheticals.
        My arguments are specific to this universe, the real world, the reason, logic, natural laws that apply here.

        You can presume that when I state something I am only referring to the real world.

        If I assert a false premise – demonstrating that falsifies that argument. Saying a premise is wrong is far from demonstrating it.

        You love the term “denial” – and you use it badly.

        I know you hate higher order thinking – such as philosophy, but it is actually necessary.

        There are an infinite number of possible truths.
        Nearly all of them are false.
        1 + 1 = 3, 1 + 1 = 4, 1 + 1 = 5 …. are all false (in this particular possible universe).
        Of all the things that are not obviously false – that MIGHT be true, nearly all of those are inconsistent with each other.

        This is the reason that logic, math science are structured as they are – with a very small number of axioms – things that are self-evidently true but can not be proven, that are then used to prove or disprove everything else.

        Anything that might be true that is in conflict with an axiom – or with something that is proven using axioms is false.

        Your eyes may have glassed over because you do not care. But whether you care or not, the above is the foundation of logic, reason, math, science, economics, …. even most religion.

        We do not inhabit a world in which whatever we wish is true.

        If you assert something as true – that has consequences – anything that conflicts with it must be false.

        The “denialism” is yours. You inhabit a world that does not exist, one in which you can pick and choose what is true based on your guts – what you are calling “common sense” and “common decency” without regard for the fact that when you chose something as true – that choices has consequences – that choice DENIES the truth of everything that conflicts with it.
        But you do not accept that. and are therefore in denial about the real world.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 2:30 pm

        “You were whining about my post.”

        No, I noted that it was a non-sequitur.
        That is an observation of fact and logic.

        It is not a statement of emotion.

        You did answer – of point and in error.

        We go through that constantly.

        We start with some actual argument about some relevant issue.
        And you respond with fallacy and emotion, until the thread becomes entirely about you, or me, and has nothing at all to do with any relevant issue.

        I would refer you to the Feinman quote I posted above

        “You should, in science, believe logic and arguments, carefully drawn, and not authorities”

        Facts, logic reason – not authorities, not emotions.

        Your posts ALWAYS devolve to nonsense about either you or about me.

        It is not about you.
        It is not about me.

        Nearly always when you start speculating about me – you are wrong.

        I have periodically gotten sucked in to your idiotic appeals to your own authority.

        I do not “feign to be the dullest knife” I am quite confident of my own intellect. I do not appeal to my own authority. Or at least not until you sucked me.
        Any conclusion about our intelligence that is not rooted in the arguments themselves results in one of us coming off as a pompous ass. I will let you have that win.

        You conflate the relentless pursuit of the truth with a :need to win”.

        I will be happy to allow you to have the last word on nearly anything – If you are capable of ending with something that is true, or at least that is not obviously false and insulting.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 3, 2017 8:36 pm

      Yup, to you Roby.
      Hogburger’s comments/cartoons, etc, liberties (taking advantage of blogging space) takes away from our liberties, only he can’t, or won’t see it. Hogs like him only oink to please themselves and actually think their ramblings are read and are influencing people’s opinions. They don’t, and the “Sorry” whatever remark follows, and the fact that he actually gives you the “you are free to whatever”, when we can’t wade through all the inane posts, is ludicrous.
      Don’t bother to respond Hogburger, cause I ain’t interested, (another favorite usage of his) in hogwash.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 12:31 am

        “Yup, to you Roby.
        Hogburger’s comments/cartoons, etc, liberties (taking advantage of blogging space) takes away from our liberties, only he can’t, or won’t see it. Hogs like him only oink to please themselves and actually think their ramblings are read and are influencing people’s opinions. They don’t, and the “Sorry” whatever remark follows, and the fact that he actually gives you the “you are free to whatever”, when we can’t wade through all the inane posts, is ludicrous.
        Don’t bother to respond Hogburger, cause I ain’t interested, (another favorite usage of his) in hogwash.”

        Lots of ad hominem but nothing that is accurate.

        Why do you presume to know what someone else thinks ?

        Like Roby you seem to think that numbers have weight.

        Read, don’t.

      • Roby permalink
        December 4, 2017 7:42 am

        Ha, dduck all true, but I’ve found that playing with Dave beats getting mad. And he inadvertently produces humor, as when he took my response to Pat as a response to him and wanted to know why I want to get his wife into this?!?.

        When life give one lemons, make lemonade.

  44. dhlii permalink
    December 3, 2017 6:51 pm

    State by state first half Growth for 2017.

    With a few noteable exceptions – Red states have done well in 2017, and blue states have not.

    MI, WV, and KY have done very well and that favors Trump – particularly MI.

    Other swing states are more troubling.

  45. Pat Riot permalink
    December 3, 2017 7:37 pm

    With all the opinions expressed in this thread thus far, all the ideas introduced that there is not time to address, and those that have been discussed, the thing I wonder about the most is what Priscilla’s legs looked like in that dress, lol. Okay so I’m only partly kidding. This is how I’m wired. Do I have to change?

    • Roby permalink
      December 3, 2017 7:48 pm

      Ask your wife. Whatever she says, that is the answer.

      • Roby permalink
        December 3, 2017 7:59 pm

        And, I can add, that makes you a typical &*(%$ trump supporter, you %^$#* ☺

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 12:29 am

        “And, I can add, that makes you a typical &*(%$ trump supporter, you %^$#* ☺”

        Except that I did not vote for Trump which you already know – but seem completely unable to grasp.

        Does the punctuated explitives make you feel better ?

        Still not an argument.

        Are you capable of discussing anything but you or me ?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 3, 2017 9:01 pm

        Back to giving orders again – now you want to force my wife into this ?

        Why is it you seem to think you get to direct everyone else’s lives ?

        Regardless, I do not need to ask anyone about logic.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 3, 2017 9:33 pm

        Fortunately for me, my wife likes my libidinous side! She is the only one who receives more than flirting from me! 34 years! 1984 to present!

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 12:39 am

        Pat
        I am glad your wife have a good relationship.
        The saturday after Thanksgiving was the 34th aniversary of our first date.

        But Roby’s post did not have anything to do with actual relationships or the topic.

        He tried to make a stupid argument from a question, and then claim it was valid, and was trying to pretend that my wife the lawyer would be able to explain it to me.

        I greatly respect my wife, she is brilliant, a brilliant lawyer, and very capable with logic.
        But logic is not something I need her help with.
        Though Roby does.

      • Roby permalink
        December 4, 2017 7:57 am

        Dave, if you were to come to TNM itself and look at this thread you would understand where you left the rails. But, most likely you won”t and will continue to produce inadvertent humor. Which beats producing the same dry argument like a broken record so, carry on!

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 2:36 pm

        Roby
        “Dave, if you were to come to TNM itself and look at this thread you would understand where you left the rails. But, most likely you won”t and will continue to produce inadvertent humor. Which beats producing the same dry argument like a broken record so, carry on!”

        The thread left the rails long before you commented about wives.

        Your

        “Ask your wife. Whatever she says, that is the answer.”

        Post was sent to me as a reply to dhlii.

        There is good reason that Ron has requested that we note the person we are addressing.
        And I would also suggest some context when we are replying.

        A fair portion of the comments are not threaded correctly in the email notices.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 3, 2017 8:38 pm

      That would be up to your employer and the women you flirt with.

    • December 3, 2017 9:19 pm

      Haha, Pat! Pretty good, apparently.

      On the whole HR thing….A couple of years ago, I read a book about how men are increasingly fearful of being accused of sexual harassment, and it is actually hurting women in the workplace, because men are less likely to mentor young female colleagues. Also, the kind of networking that often results in job success is necessarily social in nature, and creates situations that could be open to misinterpretation.

      It reminds me of a few months ago, when Mike Pence said that he never drinks alcohol at a business or social gathering unless his wife is present, and he never has dinner alone with a female colleague. A lot of feminists slammed him for that, saying that he was denying opportunities to women on his staff, by keeping them at arms length and refusing to socialize with them in the same way that he would socialize with male colleagues. And, that’s probably true. On the other hand, Pence is unlikely to be hit with sexual harassment allegations.

      But, seriously. We can’t have it both ways, can we?

      • December 3, 2017 11:46 pm

        Priscilla, what Mike Pence said is much more prevalent than one might imagine. And I bet there are a lot of men in leadership positions with women in positions that are developing a career or are VP’s or others in roles just secondary to those men that are taking a second look at how they conduct their meetings and social activities outside the workplace.

        For instance, a VP or CEO taking a business trip and needs an administrative assistant with him at the meetings. Does he take his female AA that provides support at the office with him, or does he find a male substitute that he can take?

        It may not be right, but when its he said/she said, those wanting to protect a personal and business reputation now have to make different decisions than before.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 12:34 am

        Many things have unintended consequences.

        I recall reading a study in the past year or so where the Family and Medical Leave act, actually reduced opportunities and wages for women.

        We cannot have things both ways everywhere – but we can have things different ways in different places.

    • December 3, 2017 11:27 pm

      Pat your free to wonder all you want. Your free to check them out whenever with your eyes. If they are there to view, who says your not able to enjoy the view?

      Just make sure the looking stops right there. If not, if your wife does not slap the poop out of you Priscilla most likely would and there would be no need for any further “inappropriate behavior” claims. Your two black eyes would give it away.

  46. Jay permalink
    December 3, 2017 9:24 pm

    Now Schlumpo is trying to cast doubt ton his groping audio.
    Can you believe this lying loser!

    It’s refuted by the guy he was speaking to:

    Anyone who is calling for the removal of other politicians who have been accused of sexual misconduct by multiple victims who isn’t calling for Groper-Boy to resign is a hypocrite.

    • December 3, 2017 11:49 pm

      How many times does one have to say he needs to resign before you accept they are being honest? If one says he should never have been elected because of his behavior, how many other comments does one have to make to meet your approval? Do we need to fill every post that Rick makes with 1200+ comments that Trump needs to resign?

      • Jay permalink
        December 4, 2017 12:58 am

        “How many times does one have to say he needs to resign before you accept they are being honest? “

        99 resigns on the Wall..
        If one of those resigns happens to Fall..
        98 resigns on the Wall..

        And why do you think I’m directing that at you?

        97 resigns on the Wall…
        If one of those resigns happens to Fall..
        96 resigns on the Wall..

    • December 4, 2017 9:13 am

      Ron, I’m afraid that this is all we can expect. Endless links and tweets about how horriible things are under this president.

      Last quarter’s economic growth was recently revised to 3.3%, highest in a decade, with the dollar holding steady. This is despite three devastating hurricanes. Business investment is slightly up, and with the corporate tax cut, we’re likely to see that increase as well.

      ISIS has been driven from 99% of the territories that it has held. Our allies in the ME are beginning to form a coalition to stop Iran’s attempt to dominate the region. Former Trump opponent Lindsey Graham just yesterday on “Face the Nation” called Trump’s foreign policy team the best he has seen, and has praised Trump’s resolve in handling the NK crisis. Orrin Hatch, who has served under 7 presidents, of both parties, called Trump one of the best he has seen.

      (But, by all means, let’s ignore Graham and Hatch and listen to Billy Bush, a lightweight entertainment figure and Trump hater, who has tried to destroy the president from the moment that Trump declared his candidacy. He was obviously the source for the Access Hollywood tape in the first place)

      Lots of negative things happening as well. Trump is far from perfect. But Jay will cherry pick the stories that reinforce his belief that we are in living the worst of times, all because of Trump, and that, if only Hillary had won the election, we would be living in the best of times.

      • Roby permalink
        December 4, 2017 9:52 am

        Jay is dead on in his comments on trump’s faults. He is also Quite repetitive and I understand why that annoys you and Ron. Jay is a big boy with a real life and will not hold it against me that I admitted that he is repetitive. I am sure he is aware of it himself. You might apply the same idea and admit to having noticed some small level of repetitiveness from your buddy Dave.

        The list of omissions and corrections to the glorious picture you have painted of life under trump is too long for me to get into. With such a wondrous history of accomplishments you would think that he would not have just hit a new low of 33% approval on Gallup. There must be something else going on that Jay is on about. trumps near 60% disapproval cannot be blamed on “the left” since “the left” make up only 25% of the population. Somehow there is another 35% of Americans who are not the left who are seeing what Jay and I are are seeing and you are not seeing or not that you will admit to seeing.

      • Jay permalink
        December 4, 2017 11:29 am

        “ Jay is a big boy with a real life and will not hold it against me that I admitted that he is repetitive. I am sure he is aware of it himself. ”

        Did you ever hear a tune you liked that got trapped in your head, and you found yourself humming it over and over? That’s my tRUMP refrain, and I’m going to keep humming it.

        Or think of my AntiSchlump repetitions like a sticker on a neighbor’s car: it’s there for the duration, and either ignore it, mimic it, or slap on your own annoying car sign.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 8:14 pm

        There is a world of differences between repeating arguments that have not yet been falsified

        and repeating insults.

        Jay’s posts do not bother me.
        I may choose to respond, but I am still OK with them.

        In fact they make me happy – that I am not Jay.

      • Jay permalink
        December 4, 2017 10:59 pm

        “In fact they make me happy – that I am not Jay.”

        Reciprocal at you double, Dave.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 8:20 pm

        Trump’s approval ratings are and have been in the tank.

        So everyone else’s.
        Democrats, republicans, the media.

        In the land of the blind, the one eyed man is King.

        The approval rate of the democratic party is nearly 10 points lower than Trump.

        I am happy with all of this.

        I think skepticism of government is a great thing – something that I hope endures for a very long time.

        With respect to Trump’s approval rating or 60% disapproval rating – that is meaningless.

        If we chose our leader based on approval ratings right now Trump would be King – because that of the rest of our leaders is worse.

        Trump one the election with approvate at this level.
        He still beats Clinton head to head.

        To paraphase churchill “Trump is the worst possible president, except all the others”

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 8:32 pm

        “Somehow there is another 35% of Americans who are not the left who are seeing what Jay and I are are seeing and you are not seeing or not that you will admit to seeing.”

        It is you and Jay that are blind.

        You do not grasp that you can drive everyone’s approval down to zero – that is nearly meaningless.

        Little has changed since the election, and most of what has changed favors republicans and Trump.

        Thus far Democrats have won only a single election that had any potential to signal a trend in their favor. Every other election either fell as expected or fell towards Trump/Republicans.

        I am deeply disturbed that Moore is winning in AL. But that should scare the crap out of democrats. How is a peodophile not losing to anyone ?

        As I understand it Jones is outspending Moore 10:1 and still losing.

        Absolutely the right should not be celebrating that. It should hang its head in shame that Moore is a republican.

        But democrats need to take a serious look at themselves.

        What is wrong with your ideas when you can not defeat a peodophile ?

        I would further note, that all this is occuring in an environment where democrats have every advantage. Trump is unpopular, the media pummel him relentlessly.
        Even Fox is only kind by comparison.

        And yet democrats are LESS popular than Trump.

        You say you and Jay see something no one else does.

        Sorry but wrong.

        You do not see something everyone else does.

        The left is self destructing.
        Worse still the full court press of the last two years is unsustainable – or if it is, then the country is actually headed for civil war.

        Rick and Ron are both getting angry, and they are starting to sound like Trump supporters.

      • Jay permalink
        December 4, 2017 11:01 am

        “if only Hillary had won the election, we would be living in the best of times.”

        If Hillary had won, those positives you mention, ISIS, the Economy, would have happened exactly the same. The momentum for those events to occur was already in place. I dare you to show anything president CrapHead did to accomplish either that would have been different under Clinton.

        But I can point to numerous instances of the harm Divisive Donald has done to the nation. The hatred and lowering of basic standards.
        The constant lying daily.
        The antagonisms he’s created with long standing allies.
        The refusal to separate himself from his business interests
        The…

        But why bother, you’ll rationalize the destructiveness, as usual.

        Enjoy the continuing decline of American values, reputation, influence post tRUMP you will witness in the coming years.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 8:54 pm

        “If Hillary had won, those positives you mention, ISIS”
        Obama and Hillary had 8 years to deal with ISIS – they failed.
        ” the Economy,”
        Throughout 2016 the economy was headed DOWN, the expectation was a recession in early 2017, After Trump won the market spiked, this recovery is NOT expected,

        “The momentum for those events to occur was already in place.”
        Absolute Bunk.
        It does not take 8 years to recover from a recession.

        While I do beleive and I think the evidence indicates we are in a policy change driven recovery.
        It is till too early to state that for certain. Obama had rare 3 q’s of consecutive growth.
        But no more. 4Q 2017 if it is 3% of above will be the first certain departure fromt he Obama economy.

        “I dare you to show anything president CrapHead did to accomplish either that would have been different under Clinton.”

        Clinton was NOT going to make peace with Saudi Arabai – therefore the mideast was going to remain a mess. Se was certainly not going to act favorably to Israel.

        Has she won – we would NOT be having this Russia !!!!! Nonsense – she would be in bed with Putin – as she always was. Russia is only evil in the eyes of democrats right now because Hillary lost and Putin is being scape goated.

        If Clinton was elected, we would not be chocking regulation throughout government we would be amplifying it. We would not be paring down department after department.
        DAPL and KXL would still be on hold Gas prices would be higher.

        “I can point to numerous instances of the harm Divisive Donald has done to the nation. The hatred and lowering of basic standards.
        The constant lying daily.
        The antagonisms he’s created with long standing allies.
        The refusal to separate himself from his business interests
        The…”

        Most of those happened BEFORE Trump. In fact most of them are the consequence of Democrats.

        Further, most have nothing to do with whether tomorow will be a better day than today.

        “Enjoy the continuing decline of American values, reputation, influence post tRUMP you will witness in the coming years.”

        This is the most bizarre argument.

        First Why do I care what other nations think about America ?
        Further to the extent I do care – why is it I am to presume that our reputation has declined ?

        Apparently you are not paying attention. Most of those improvements Priscilla cited – such as the 3% growth are unique to the US. Grown in Germany is less than 1% and has not been above 2% for more than 1Q since the 70’s.
        I can not find a single significant european country with growth above 1% or with growth that is not declining in 2017

        Europes immigration issues make ours like trivial.
        Generally Europes problems make ours look minor.

        The left is worried that the US is moving towards Fasicm – which is laughable. The greatest authoritarian political danger by far int he US is from the left. There are more members of Antifa in Boston than Neo Nazi’s in the US.

        But real ultra nationalists are arrising in Europe.

    • December 4, 2017 1:46 pm

      Listen, Roby and Jay, I knew that you would bash me for posting my last comment, because I had the temerity to say that Trump has accomplished some good things. ‘

      And I knew that you would both ignore the fact that I followed a relatively brief and factual list of those good things with this comment: “Lots of negative things happening as well. Trump is far from perfect. ”

      Did I paint a ” glorious picture of life under trump?” Nope, not at all. I pointed out that Trump has not been all bad, and I attempted to back that up with some evidence.

      Would the positives that I mentioned have happened under Hillary? Possibly, but we’ll never know. I prefer to stay in the real world, where Hillary is NOT the president, and never will be.

      Anyway, my point stands. Jay, I am glad to see that you recognize that your repetitive ranting and link-posting is similar to a car bumper sticker. I never actually had a bumper sticker on any of my cars, because….well, I don’t see the point of them.

      But, carry on, if you must!

      • Roby permalink
        December 4, 2017 2:47 pm

        “Lots of negative things happening as well. Trump is far from perfect. ”

        That was Powerful!! Now, refer back to the letter I sent Obama and compare tones and substance.

        Your criticism of trump has about the same amount of oooomph that the criticisms our dear Russian lady friend has made of Russia or the USSR or Stalin or Putin. She occasionally (Very occasionally) says things like “I’m not saying that mistakes were not made”, and then goes back to telling us why Stalin had no choice but to…. and why Putin is the best Russian leader in her lifetime.

        And, she is Russian, and from a very, very high level of Russian society, (which most of all she earned by hard work and being born a one in a million set of talents) so I can understand that she has been conditioned to strike only the mildest and most glancing blows to Russian history, leaders, and actions.

        The day you rip into trump with a passion, with a vengeance, leaving marks behind I am going to have lost a bet with myself and will have to pay myself one pint of Ben and Jerry’s. Same goes for the day you have anything objective to vent about on the down side of our more local issue, Dave.

        That loyalty of yours.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 9:22 pm

        And there is the rub.

        Trump is not perfect.

        He is also not even close to Stalin, Mao, ….

        In fact as bad as he is, he is preferable to Hillary, and even Obama or Bush,

        Bill Clinton poses a Roy Moore problem for me. He was a pretty good president – particularly domestically. But he is atleast as Bad as Moore in character.

        It is unlikely that Priscilla or I or Ron are going to rip into Trump with the Passion you desire – because we are rational enough to see that Trump is NOT Mao or Stalin.

        You are not capable of grasping that he might not be worse than Hillary, much less that he is actually better than Obama or Bush.

        He is NOT a better person. But he is a better president. Pretty much the same problem as Bill Clinton.

      • Jay permalink
        December 4, 2017 5:20 pm

        Carrying on..
        Remove tRUMP.
        Cruelly punish Republicans in elections for the next two decades.
        Mercerlessly hound tRUMP and his family as they continue to hound the Clintons.
        Make ‘trump’ into an adjective connoting Lying Pomposity.
        Perpetually give him the 🖕when appearing in public for the remainder of his life.

        I hope I live to see all this come to pass

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 2:32 am

        “I hope I live to see all this come to pass”

        You should be hoping that you do not see Trump re-elected which is far more likely

        I keep telling you all that the longer the investigations in to Trump go the more dirt is found regarding the Obama administration.

        If Trump asking Comey if he could find a way to cut Flynn slack is Obstruction of Justice
        then what is 30 emails from the FBI AFTER the fact seeking to hunt down and silence whoever leaked the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting ?

        Nunes is STILL waiting to here from DOJ FBI whether they made any payments to Fusion GPS or Steele regarding the Steele Dossier.
        If the answer to that is NO – why has it taken more than 3 months ?

        Nunes is STILL waiting to here from FBI DOJ whether the Steele Dossier was used to get FISA warrants.
        IF the answer is NOT – …….
        Nunes is still waiting for the FBI/DOJ to turn over Strzok’s 302’s and his texts.

        WSJ is now questioning whether the entire Mueller investigation is not an effort to block inquiry into malfeasance of the FBI during the Obama administration.

        In other words is the Special Counsell actually engaged in obstruction of Justice.

        One of the problems when you use ridiculously stupid expansive definitions is that they work equally well against you.

        Except for one thing. The President can not “obstruct justice” in directing the executive branch.
        Nixon’s actions were obstruction – because he secured private payment for the watergate defendents in return for their silence.

        There are now several editorials on WSJ advocating pardoning everybody and firing Mueller.
        I think that is till unlikely but the WSJ is not Breitbart, and support for this is building.

        Trump’s claim that the FBI’s reputation is in tatters is pretty accurate.
        I can list numerous serious FBI failures that have nothing to do with Clinton or Trump.
        Regardless, the differences betwen the FBI regarding Clinton and Trump is very damaging.

        With Clinton the evidence was there for ATLEAST 18cfr793(f) charges against clinton and several staff, as well as destruction of evidence and sworn falsifications. That ignores the various other ares the FBI did not investigate of investigate well such as U1 corruption and Clinton Foundation Pay for Play.

        Whatever damage you think is bein done to Trump is more than matched by that being done to DOJ/FBI and Mueller.

        I would have absolutely zero problem with a thorough housecleaning.

        Trump was elected to drain the swamp. It is time to start killing off the swamp creatures.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 9:07 pm

        It is trivial to say that things would have been different under President hillary.

        There are several policies of Trump’s that there is not a change in hell Clinton would have persued. Conversely that are policies Clinton would have that Trump will not ever.

        Some things would have been similar – nothing would have happened legislatively.

        I have zero doubt that the economic shifts are attributable to Trump.
        The only question is whether they are durable.

        Policy in the mideast and with Russia and China would have been radically different.

        The left seems to forget that the Anti-Russia meme did not start until very late in the elections.

        Obama was unwilling to sanction Russia for invading the Crimea, but suddenly felt compelled to raise sanctions after the election ?

        Many many things would have been different.

      • Roby permalink
        December 5, 2017 8:45 am

        “It is unlikely that Priscilla or I or Ron are going to rip into Trump with the Passion you desire – because we are rational enough to see that Trump is NOT Mao or Stalin.”

        Ron already has ripped into trump with force, many times, quite to my satisfaction, which underlines the reasons that I see Ron in the light I do. Several times you have also actually criticized him forcefully. Considering how many of your most basic principles he has violated it ought happen more often, but your obsession with trumps enemies on the left overwhelms the assault trump has made on your principles.

        Comparing trump to Mao or Stalin is absurd overkill, and I have never done so. Stalin and Ma were people, but they were people in specific situations that have no resemblance to our American one. I have said so many times.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 4:00 pm

        Is there some commutative property of Trump I am not aware of ?

        Ron and I are not in perfect agreement. But we have alot of common ground.

        Further he is ration, and logical, and makes arguments, and in doing so sometimes alters my thinking.

        Ron has also gone off on this Russa Collusion nonsense.

        Regardless, I do not recall any serious conflict with Ron over Trump.
        If Ron pissed all over Trump in a way I disagreed with – I would have responded.

        Further, I think almost no one here thinks Trump is a “good person”.

        But the anti-Trump garbage is insane – not because Trump does not deserve some oprobrium,
        but because of the extent to which you, jay, and the left will go to, to get Trump, or to Trash him.

        If Trump tweeted good afternoon instead of good morning, we would have a firestorm about Trump is a liar, and Trump is a doddering idiot, and he has dimensia, and see that is proof of Russian Collusion.

        Trump can not exhale without it generating a stream of attacks on 10,000 subjects and a demand that he be impeached immediately.

        I am not sure that any of us “like” Trump.

        But some of us can try to be somewhat objective.

        We can see him as a bad person and still see that the potential exists that he will be a good president. Far from a perfect one.

        Bill Clinton was a bad person, he was also a goof president.

        I want both, we are entitled to both.

        But we have just had two good people who were bad presidents.
        We desperately need a good president. We do not desperately need a good person.

        Fundimentally I am interested in what Trump does, not what he says.

        I find alot of his remarks annoying. At the same time as I have also noted the media as a whole is so thoroughly left corrupted that I think the media and Trump fully deserve each other.

        I think Trumps “war on the media” is desparately needed.

        It is a significant part of the damage to his approval rating.

        Trump is violating Greener’s law – never argue with someone who buys ink by the barrel.
        In doing so he is dragging down his own approval

        But Trump both in the election and elsewhere figured out something that those on the left have not yet grasped.

        “Two men were walking through the woods when a large bear
        walked out into the clearing no more than 50 feet in front of them.
        The first man dropped his backpack and dug out a pair of running
        shoes, then began to furiously attempt to lace them up as the bear
        slowly approached them. The second man looked at the first,
        confused, and said, “What are you doing? Running shoes aren’t
        going to help, you can’t outrun that bear.” “I don’t need to,” said
        the first man, “I just need to outrun you.””

        Trump does not need a 51% approval rating.

        He just needs to do better than the other guy.

        Republicans, democrats, the press are all trusted LESS than Trump

        You do not seem to grasp that as this fight continues, you occasionally score some minor points against Trump, but he is slowly destroying the credibility of the media, the left, and democrats.

        I am reveling at much of this – the executive branch is being shredded.

        Trump tweeted that the FBI reputation is in tatters.
        Guess what – it is. A year ago the left was screaming for Comey’s head. Now he is your hero.
        Though his approval is lower than Trumps.

        Mueller too came into this with an excellent reputation – it is gone. Strzok is not the end of things – we already have more and more that is likely to slowly come down the pipeline.

        When this started we did not know that the FBI/DOJ was hiding corruption in the U1 deal from congress – now not only do we know, but that Mueller, Comey and Rosenstein were all part of that.

        Lynch had a good reputation before she became AG, now she will be remembered for obstructing justice to protect Clinton.
        We now have the proof of a an attempted coverup of the meeting by DOJ and FBI.

        It does not matter if Lynch/Clinton talked about grandchildren – if you beleive that.
        It matters that they tried to cover it up.

        It is the left that has been selling these ludicrously broad interpretations of the law.
        Live by the sword, die by the sword.

        If telling comey that Flynn was a good guy is “obstruction of justice” then trying to hide a meeting between Clinton and Lynch is even more so.

      • December 5, 2017 9:59 am

        Roby, you are correct that your criticism of Obama (I recall that it was after he made a brief, perfunctory statement about an American who was beheaded by ISIS, and then ran off to play golf) was emotional and powerful in that instance. And that my comment in this particular conversation did not address Trump’s flaws specifically, nor with any great emotion,

        But, I think that you need to see things in context. I was responding to a comment about Jay posting repetitive and obsessive links about Trump being the worst president ever. “tRUMP, Devious Donald, Schlump” and so on and so on and so on….we get that dozens of times in every single thread. There is no discussion to be had with that sort of inanity.

        So, in context, I was pointing out that Trump is likely not the worst president ever…nor is he the best.

        I’m not generally given to emotional responses or rants, especially when discussing politics, and, at least here, in TNM threads, I am generally in the position of pointing out Trump’s positives, rather than his negatives, because…..well, that is what we do here ~we debate our differing opinions. At least most of us do. And, I am the resident “Trump defender”. My lot in life, so to speak.

        “Same goes for the day you have anything objective to vent about on the down side of our more local issue, Dave.
        That loyalty of yours.”

        I don’t know why I would do that. It’s not “loyalty.” We’re not on teams, here, and I don’t know Dave any more than I know you or Ron or Pat or Jay ( I actually do know Rick, and I like him immensely, yet we’ve disagreed on many occasions…cordially, as friends do ) I understand that Dave gets under your skin, and I’ve been clear that I find Jay’s lack of seriousness and flippancy perpetually annoying. But I wouldn’t hesitate to disagree with Dave or to agree with Jay if a point of agreement/disagreement arose.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 7:38 pm

        Outside of Jay and Roby the rest of us are capable of disagreeing vigorously without getting personal.

        While I am upset with myself about allowing Roby to twist every exchange with him such that it becomes either about him or about me. God for bid we should discuss issues,
        It may be more common for things between Roby and I to turn personal, but I am not alone in having a debate with Roby turn personal. That is all Roby does, is make everything Personal.

        Jay is atleast for the time being simpler – everything is Trump! Argh, and if you disagree or see more nuance, well you are stupid.

      • Roby permalink
        December 5, 2017 10:31 am

        “But I wouldn’t hesitate to disagree with Dave or to agree with Jay if a point of agreement/disagreement arose.”

        The point is that you (and Ron) are aggravated by Jay’s repetitiveness and seem to believe it does some harm here beyond merely bugging you. Dave’s repetitiveness dwarfs Jays but you never note it and defend him, he is being unfairly treated.

        There Are sides, yes, teams. They sometimes shift a bit in interesting ways, but to deny that they exist is, er, denialism.

        If you want to chance to disagree with Dave you can start by having a look at his libertarian “I don’t see what is so bad about that” comments today on my youngest daughter being casually offered a job as whore at 30,000 feet.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 8:03 pm

        So we are annoyed at Jay ?

        Has someone told him to “Go away” ?

        BTW it is not that Jay is repetitive, it is that there is little to no substance.

        Regardless, Jay posts, you post, sometimes you annoy.
        So what ?

        Does anyone here doubt that if this was your blog Roby, that I would have been blocked long ago ?

        Do you think that Ron, or Priscilla or I would block you or Jay ?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 8:07 pm

        If I offer you butter pecan Ice Cream and you do not want it – is that a sin ? a crime ?

        Why is any offer that you are free to accept or reject as you please, that comes with things you want and things you don’t in some way inherently evil or wrong ?

        Or is this just because what is offered involves sex ?

        You seem to think that even being offered something is force that prevents you from saying no.

  47. December 3, 2017 11:56 pm

    How many years can one wait to file a complaint?
    http://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/02/arts/music/james-levine-sexual-misconduct-met-opera.html
    This one dates back to the 80’s.

    • Jay permalink
      December 4, 2017 1:00 am

      I saw that article and had the same thought..
      Are we going to be chastised for wetting our diapers as infants too?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 3:28 am

        There is no time limit at all with respect to an employer – just as there is not one with respect to voters and Franken or Moore.

        The statute of limitations on child sex abuse varies from state to state, but in some cased is 50 years.

        The specific instance here is complex. If I am reading the article and working the timeline correctly, the “boy” was 15 When Levine held his hand suggestively.
        But was 16 when the first actual genital contact occured.

        One would have to check what the age of consent was in Illinois in 1980’s

        While this conduct bothers me – I am not especially happy with 40 year old men having sex with late teen boys, the kid was near or past the age of consent and no force is alleged.

        I see this as creepy, but not a crime.

      • Jay permalink
        December 4, 2017 9:32 am

        “I see this as creepy, but not a crime”

        You and President DisgustingHuman seem to be on the same wavelength once again. He just officially and STRONGLY endorsed Moore. A CREEPY Republican who chased teen girls TRUMPS any Democrat running against a Republican. Politics over probity:

        Trump tweeted early Monday that “Democrats refusal to give even one vote for massive Tax Cuts is why we need Republican Roy Moore to win in Alabama.”

      • December 4, 2017 11:17 am

        Jay, from my ” disgusting Moore” position, I think the best outcome would be for Moore to win, the Senate taking the position that there is more than sufficient evidence that supports “actions detrimental to the senate” and refuse to seat him and let Kay Ivey (R) Alabama governor to appoint a replacement until the next regularly scheduled election. That blocks any left wing Shumer “block anything GOP” democrat from taking office and keeps Moore out of the senate.

        Wont happen, but thats what I would prefer.

      • Jay permalink
        December 4, 2017 12:56 pm

        Correct, won’t happen.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 8:08 pm

        Allegations against Moore include rape and statutory rape.
        I was addressing Levine not Moore.

        If I were in Alabama I would have to decide between voting for Jones and staying home.
        Moore is not an option. I am not near the same page as Trump.

        I think Trump should have stayed out of Alabama – for oh, so many reasons.

        Though there is a big difference between my view that Trump does not always know when to say nothing, or how to say what he says, and your obviously false presumption that he is a retarded dolt – and somehow concurrently deviously taking over the world.

        “Democrats refusal to give even one vote for massive Tax Cuts is why we need Republican Roy Moore to win in Alabama.”

        Moore is actually sufficiently bad that even that argument is wrong.

        But Trump makes a point. Republicans during the Obama administration took a strong stance against democratic policies. They provided no votes and democrats had to accomplish whatever they sought on their own. While I think the choice to go their own way was more mutual – through the obama administration Democrats were unwilling to cede a millimeter of ground to secure any Republican votes.

        We are now seeing the same in reverse, with democrats in the role of obstructionists.

        The question is, is obstructionism inherently wrong ?

        I do not think it is. I supported must republican obstruction, and I support some democratic obstruction now.

        Whether obstruction is a good thing or a bad thing depends on what is being obstructed.

        There are many ways to measure that. One is the state of the economy.
        Through out 8 years Obama averaged 1.8% growth.

        Trump has less than a year, the sample is far from sufficiently significant yet.
        But the results are 3% growth. If Trump/Republicans sustain that – then democrats should not be obstructing and do not deserve to be elected.

      • Jay permalink
        December 4, 2017 8:16 pm

        “If I were in Alabama I would have to decide between voting for Jones and staying home.”

        Good reply.

        “But the results are 3% growth. If Trump/Republicans sustain that – then democrats should not be obstructing and do not deserve to be elected.”

        Foolish reply. Do you believe in lucky charms?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 3:24 am

        What is foolish about it ?

        Republicans during the obama administration opposed democrats whose policies resulted in poor growth, growing income inequality and reduced growth in standard of living particularly for those near the bottom.

        Whether you like it or not, the political consequences of that obstruction were Republicans slowly taking over the house, the sentate the presidency and a large portion of the state governments.

        Democrats are opposing Trump. If the actual consequences of a Trump presidency are the same as those of Obama – democrats will likely reverse their losses during the obama administration.
        If however as is the case thus far Trump is more successful at improving the lives of americans,
        then democrats will be further punished for opposition.

        The argument is nothing more than an expansion on Democrat James Carvilles winning formula for Bill Clinton – “it is the economy stupid.”

        If Nixon had a strong economy during watergate, he would have served out his 2nd term.
        Instead he made far worse the mess that Johnson left him.
        Nixon is primarily responsible for the economic disaster the toppled Carter,

        Conversely Reagan’s “teflon” reputation mostly reflected the 5% growth during his presidency.
        Clinton survived his scandals more because of the robust economy than anything else.

      • Jay permalink
        December 4, 2017 11:35 am

        If elected, he’ll be seated.
        Maybe some grumbling here and there from Republicans.
        But that’s all.
        I’m POSITIVE thats the way it will/would go down.
        We are a morally corrupt nation.
        Politicians follow the flow.
        Bye Bye American Pie
        Hello Cess Pool Stew.p

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 8:58 pm

        Unfortunately. I agree with you.

        Except that it should be absolutely crystal clear to you at this moment that repugnant perversion is not a uniquely Republican problem.

        That you continue to pretend so, merely demonstrates your inability to see the world as it is.

    • December 4, 2017 1:52 pm

      Ron, I agree that that would be the best outcome. Unfortunately, neither party will expel a member anymore. The Democrats never would, now the GOP is right there with them.

      If character no longer matters, we are doomed to these kinds of situations for the foreseeable future.

      I have to say that I’m moving to your position on political parties. I’ve always believed that the two party system is best, and I still do. But these two parties make it a hard position to defend!

  48. dhlii permalink
    December 4, 2017 3:34 am

    Ken White aka “popehat” is a former US assistant attorney, and a respected lawyer and legal blogger – particularly on white collar crime and first amendment issues.

    • December 4, 2017 2:21 pm

      Popehat is one of the best Twitter feeds. I believe that even Jay has posted his stuff.

      I have to say, I’m bummed that the FBI has turned out to be so messed up. I was always a big Elliot Ness fan ~ of course, I later found out that Ness was never actually in the FBI, but I thought he was. The whole G-Man “fidelity, bravery, integrity” image and all that.

      Oh well, the best heroes are often flawed.

  49. dhlii permalink
    December 4, 2017 4:02 am

  50. Pat Riot permalink
    December 4, 2017 8:21 am

    Dave,

    Congrats on the 34th anniversary of your first date with your wife. It is not original of me to say that some of the most poignant and satisfying experiences in life can only happen after two people have been intimate for years and years and years. It is a shame that along the way my wife had to drive me nuts with some of her habits, such as kicking off her shoes and leaving them all over the house despite adequate closet space! (There is no sarcasm or hidden meanings in my previous sentences. The previous sentences are merely a friendly greeting, a way to acknowledge that you are a human being, and an attempt by me to find some commonality with you. Greetings like this can often aid subsequent communication. There is no need to debate or argue with my conversational “greeting”. Please do not tell me that I am free to leave my wife if her habits bother me, but that I have no right to use force to coerce my wife to put away her shoes! OK, so my immediately previous sentence was a mild jab at you and your commenting style.)

    I would like to debate with you. I agree with many of your points, and sometimes (SOMETIMES) when I disagree with you I nonetheless appreciate the…”boldness” of your logic. You have an intelligent mind and a wealth of knowledge that goes wide and deep (I mean that; I’m being straightforward here) but you have some communication and language difficulties (still being straightforward here) and that is why I cannot afford to debate with you. I’ll give you a recent example:

    I said:
    “The concept of coercion/force is very foundational to your thinking. You must agree with that!”

    You responded:
    “I rarely use “coercion” – because “force or the threat of force” is a narrower defintion fo coercion than most people use.
    Regardless, force is NOT foundational to my thinking.
    It is foundational to Government. if we are dealing with force we are dealing with govenrment, and if we are dealing with government we are dealing with force. ”

    You misunderstood. I didn’t say that you advocated the use of force or coercion. I was merely saying that you often (very, very, very, VERY often) end up talking about the use of force in your diatribes. Because you refer to the use of force so often (so, so, SO often) it is therefore “foundational” to your thinking. You should have agreed with my statement and argued about something else, but you gave me a “Rain Man” response. Your misunderstandings like this are all over the place at TNM. This is one of the reasons I cannot afford to debate with you. Your frequent misunderstandings of communication and language make it too time-consuming to debate with you. I believe you are liked and welcomed here at TNM for various reasons, but I cannot afford the time to debate with you.

    Another reason is your volume of response. Other posters here are absolutely correct when they refer to your verbosity and volume as a smokescreen or evasive maneuvers. It is like an advanced fighter jets that releases a bunch of hot debris to divert and avoid a heat-seeking missile. When there is a legitimate challenge to one of your thoughts or comments, you will release a deluge of related, barely related, and unrelated information.

    Here is a basic template (indefinite article “a” template, not “the” template) of how dialogue and debate should proceed:

    Person #1 says “A, B, and C.”

    Person #2 says, “I hear you saying A, B, and C. I see what you mean by B.” (This validates the other person as a human being with a brain.) “I understand what you are saying about A and C, but I disagree. Here is the angle by which I disagree with your A, and here are two brief examples.”

    Note that person #2 held back from elaborating on his disagreement with C for the sake of courteous brevity.

    Here is an example of how you debate:

    Person #1 says “A, B, and C.”

    You say:
    You are wrong about A. Here is something I say is an absolute fact. And here is D and G and G, part 2. You are totally wrong about B, and here is F, T, U, V, and M, and part 2 of V, and part 3a of the 2nd part of M. And your opinion has no basis in fact and is illogical. And here is a table of data with no connection to our discussion.

    My example above is symbolic, of course.

    This is my opinion and some of the reasons I cannot afford to debate with your communication and language difficulties. Of course you are free to post and I am free to ignore you when I want to ignore you. Sorry if this opinion comes across to you as hurtful, but your responses often come across as affronts–arrogant, closed-minded affronts. I know you are somewhere “on the spectrum,” so to speak, and that is OK. I’m not condemning you for that. This is not intended to be hurtful. Mostly I do not wish my future ignoring of your comments to be misunderstood by you or others as me conceding to you. And it’s a shame because I do agree with many of your points.

    • Roby permalink
      December 4, 2017 8:35 am

      Youza! dduck just fell flat out in love with you and wants to know if you can post a picture of your legs.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 4, 2017 9:59 am

        haha. Even though Rick’s topic this time is Sexual Misconduct, I’d better not start sexting pictures here!

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 2:48 pm

      Pat,

      I am not going to comment on your marriage beyond noting that my 34 years has covered a universe. There have been incredibly bad parts and incredibly good parts, and times that each of us have wanted to kill the one person we could not live without.
      I try not to judge the relations of others.

      My “if you do not like it you can choose otherwise” is important to everything.
      It is nearly always true, we usually know it is true. But sometimes we need to hear it – because it puts things in context. My life with my wife is nothing like what I would have imagined.
      There are myriads of annoying “shoes all over the floor” – I do not understand how I got here, and I know she has her own long list. But the thought of leaving tears my soul apart.
      I have found my soul mate and I do not ever want to live without her.
      I hope that everyone here is as fortunate.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 5, 2017 7:21 am

        Dave,
        Nice, realistic words regarding your relationship with your wife.

        “My life with my wife is nothing like what I would have imagined.”

        Yes, this is an interesting aspect of living life–how reality differs from what we imagine. When my wife and I were young, we built a life based on how we both had imagined things should be (me very idealistic) and fortunately there was enough overlap in the two “Venn Diagram circles” of what we imagined that it was charming and good. Then came the kids, and life kicked us around a bit, but still we had fun with it and it was predominantly good. Now the new empty nest phase is a difficult adjustment for both of us and a time to re-evaluate. Lately more than ever “my life is nothing like what I would have imagined”.

      • December 5, 2017 9:18 am

        “Happily ever after is not a fairy tale. It’s a choice.”

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 3:09 pm

      Pat;

      In my life I have moved through myriads of ideological positions so radically different from where I am not.

      Roby and others here are intent on psychoanalyzing me and do so badly.

      I am not about “winning” or having the last word. I am about finding the truth.

      I am in the midst of rereading JS Mill’s essay on liberty – which is incredibly appropriate given the debate on free speech today. Though I want to know how it is that we are once again debating free speach. I thought we had settled that.

      Regardless, an argument that Mills makes over and over is that even if you have found the truth, you can not know that unless you test it. That free speach is absolutely critical because the truth slowly dies unless it is constantly challenged by the very best counter arguments.

      Roby is correct that I am looking to do battle over ideas – because that is how we test them, that is how we find the truth.
      My job and HIS, is to make the best strongest most vigorous case for our position, because the result is meaningless otherwise.

      I am well prepared to argue my side. To change my mind you must demonstrate a real flaw in my position, or present a compelling argument that is not in contradiction with something that is fundamental and unchallenged.

      That does not happen often. But it does happen, and it has happened here at TNM.
      You in fact identified a relatively clear flaw in one argument I was making several years ago, and I have had to revise that.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 3:26 pm

      With respect to your example:

      You said “force is foundational to my thinking”

      Maybe I could have responded more succinctly.

      Force is not FOUNDATIONAL to my thinking.

      It is however an extremely common theme in my posts.

      Alot of the debate here is about the role of government.
      Often that debate is implicitly about government and I deliberately seek to make it explict.

      And one of the reasons for that is

      https://images.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fmccluresmagazine.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2015%2F06%2Fgeorge-washington-quote-government-force-jesus-socialism-libertarianism.png&f=1

      Foundational does not mean “use very very often”.

      Force is the difference between voluntary cooperation and government.
      It is “foundational” with respect to govenrment.
      but that is merely because if we remove force from government the result is not called government.

      Liberty, freedom, free will are foundational – not merely for me – but within philosophy,

      Force and its uses are secondary or dependent values.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 5, 2017 7:42 am

        Dave,

        I think you are misunderstanding here again, but we’ll remedy it.

        Foundational: denoting an underlying basis or principle; fundamental

        The concept of “force,” i.e. not using force against another individual or group, is foundational to Libertarian thinking.

        Because in your posts here at TNM you frequently write about force and coercion (we don’t need to hair split between those terms at the moment), i.e. you talk about “government coercion” and “government using force” and people not having the right to force others to do X and Y…because of the frequency of your reference to not using force, it belies or reveals that the concept of force (used or not used) is fundamental or foundational to your thought processes, beliefs, to YOU.

        So, you are correct that frequency doesn’t equal foundational, and foundational is not defined as frequent, but the frequency (repetition) of your discussion of using force or not using force is evidence that the concept of force is foundational (fundamental) to your thinking. That doesn’t mean that it’s the single most fundamental concept, nor does it mean that there aren’t other fundamental concepts to your thinking. But I am saying that it is one of the tenets of your thinking.

        If you still do not agree, we can skip it and move on.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 3:05 pm

        I am not misundertanding you.
        I am continuing to address this because you seem to be sincerely trying to understand me and my values – how force can be used is absolutely an important value.

        I actually try hard to limit certain portions of my vocabularly in debates to use important terms with clear meanings, and to avoid synonyms that might have nuanced differences in meaning.
        A great deal of the problems in progressivism are the consequence of eliding conflicts by allowing meaning to be maleable.

        The distinction between values and principles is important. I keep asking Roby for principles, and he returns values – if I am lucky or more likely ambiguous platitudes.

        I value spinach, and ice cream. A value is something important to us. But we weigh values against each other and make compromises all the time. What we value, is not the source of morality, ethics, law, our concepts of right and wrong.

        Principles are below values – often values derive from principles. But not always. regardless values are maleable and we make tradeoffs between values easily. Values are typically where compromise is easy.

        I am not quite prepared to say principles are immutable. But they are close.
        It is probably correct to say that the use of force is a principle of mine. It is also probably correct to say that it is a principle of western and possibly all civilization.

        BUT The foundational principle of libertarianism is Free Will.

        Libertarian views on force DERIVE from the importance of liberty.

        This is important because free will is also core to morality, and philosophy (not just libertarian).
        Free will gets you to force and alot of other places – it is foundational.
        Force does not take you as far. It is a branch, not the trunk. It is not doundational.

        Obviously the relationship is tight. the primary mean of abridging liberty is the use of force.
        The use of force almost always violates free will and almost all violations of free will are force.

        Still Force is not the foundational value.

        There is alot of use of force that I do not speak about at all. Driving a nail is force, launching a rocket is force. Uses of force that have no political implications at all abound.
        It is when force is used to violate Free Will that I start speaking.

        Anyway, I will absolutely agree with you that force is very important to me. I should think it was to everyone.
        But foundations are what everything else builds upon.
        Force is not the foundation, Free Will is. All my thoughts on Force are specifically because of its effects on Free Will.

        Further I MOSTLY argue a specific branch of libertarian thought rooted in the NAP.
        Non agression principle – though I have a more philosophical view of the NAP – it has myriads of expressions including Kants catagorical imperative which sounds far less libertarain, and is actually broader than the NAP.

        You are correct I discuss force constantly here at TNM.

        I worked with some carpenters over a summer, and we constantly discussed nail guns.
        That did not make nailguns foundational to carpentry.
        Though it did mean they were important.

        I discuss force, because it is the bright line between government and not government.
        The concept of force is fundimental to government.
        it is “foundational” to my thinking – ABOUT GOVERNMENT.
        Nor am I alone there – it is foundational to thousands of years of thinking about government.

        But there are other branches of libertarian thought. J.S. Mill was a utilitarian.
        I may constantly borrow utilitarian ideas and arguments, but ultimately I am not utilitarian.

        There are also randian objectivists – inherently aristotelian. Again I borrow from them but I am not an objectivist,

        Further the largest portion of libertarians are not doctinaire.
        They are just people who feel more freedom less government – probably good,
        more government less freedom – probably bad.

        Ron appears to fit that group. I used to fit that group, before that I was a 60’s liberal. raised in a goldwater/friedman conservative family – that mostly did not discuss politics.
        But we did discuss the ways government was making the family business harder and how that not only screwed us, but usually those working for us.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 3:41 pm

      Pat

      You are absolutely correct about miscommunications.

      But I think you are completely wrong about the source of the problem.

      The reasons for a great deal of miscommunication here is that we misuse words constantly.

      That is fine when we are talking about fiction or poetry.

      In science the definitions of terms is absolutely critical.

      E=Mc^2 only works if each of the terms is defined precisely and used narrowly.

      I have also asserted that when we are discussion government – there is that force thing again.
      we need to be precise. While I usually phrase that as “because we are using force”.
      If you prefer to make it foundational, that would be “because we are constraining free wll”.

      Alot of my posts start to sound rote, and boring – because I deliberately avoid to a large extent using synonyms for critical terms.

      As I noted – I avoid the use of the term coercion. There is nothing wrong with the word.
      But if I say “force or the threat of force” there is less confusion.

      What you are calling communication and language difficulties are a deliberate choice.
      Further they are very important.

      Much of the conflict with me is because in the context of “constraining freedom” I am not going to tolerate ambiguity.

      I actively seek to constrain arguments involving the restraint of free will to clear terms.

      I will openly rewrite the arguments others make to remove efforts to obfuscate that they are infringements on liberty.

      For much the same reasons and more that we do not tolerate ambiguity in science.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 5, 2017 8:12 am

        It sounds like you are saying that you want to use words precisely. That’s good; we should try. But it also sounds like you have slightly unrealistic ideas about words and language. Words are fluid things with shadows and grey areas depending on usage by different people in different areas. Some words are just about hopelessly ambiguous. Some words rely on the context around them to give them their meaning.

        Simple example:

        1. I’m flying to another country.
        2. I’m going to spend some quiet time in the country.

        “Country” in usage #1 is a political distinction.

        “Country” in usage #2 is a rural area as opposed to an urban or suburban area.

        Neither definition above is the “official” definition. It depends on the usage and the context.

        This is just scratching the proverbial surface. I consider myself a linguist and a wordsmith, and now I’m going to also be a bastard and say that you have a “below average” ability to infer the meaning of people’s words from the context in which they are used. I’ve seen that here with you over and over, again and again, and I know others who do it. I think you try to compensate for this with super-intense de-construction and examination of words, sentences, and ideas. I’ll be less of a bastard and say that there are some intellectual benefits to what you do (your super intense de-construction and examination) but that it can be annoying for those of us to whom “inference” regarding the subtleties of words comes more naturally. I could say that better, but I don’t have time. Now I am sounding arrogant because I am being brutally honest (and also fully realizing other folks may not agree with me).

        1. Look at that poor bastard with no coat. (Bastard meaning unfortunate individual)

        2. In earlier centuries it was considered shameful to be a bastard. (Bastard meaning a child born out of wedlock.)

        3. The boss won’t let me go home early. What a bastard! (Bastard meaning callous, unfriendly a–hole or prick)

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 3:25 pm

        “It sounds like you are saying that you want to use words precisely.”

        Only in the context of the use of force.

        In a previous post I noted that force is a branch, not the trunk of the tree.

        The use of force is the specific branch of the tree sprouting from free will, that we must take great care about the words we use.

        Ambiguity, nuance, word play, are all perfectly fine – in poetry, art, music, and myriads of other things. But not where we are making decisions about the use of force.

        I have no problem with the rest of your post.

        In science, mathmatics, we are very careful about the meaning of words. All the issues you cite are deliberately driven out of those fields because they make meaningful thought and
        communication in those areas impossible.

        Our use of words in the context of the use of force is the same.

        We can be as maleable as we please discussing freedom – until we start discussing the use of force to limit it. From that point on we must be clear. Just as in science boil, and melt have single and specific meanings, while they have many meanings elsewhere.

        When we say the water boiled – we do not mean it got angry.
        When we say the ice melted – we do not mean it fell in love.

        In science we are talking about the change from liquid to gas, or solid to liquid,
        we need precision because that allows us to think precisely about that.
        There are many additional physical attributes and values that derive from our precision with respect to melting and boiling, and those attributes tell us things only tangentially related to melting and boiling.

        Regardless, we do not wish to be using force ambigiously.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 3:54 pm

      If I have ever noted that some post here has been “hurtful” it has merely been to ensnare those on the left in their own stupid logic that presumes that something that is hurtful is also false.

      I have thick skin. Despite Roby and Jay’s constant projection that I am some giant mass of heaving emotions. I am not easily hurt and if something is true that it might hurt is my problem.

      “but your responses often come across as affronts–arrogant, closed-minded affronts”
      To some extent also a choice.

      If you have read Orwell on writing one of his rules is:
      Get rid of unnecessary mush words. I think, I believe, in my opinion are all redundant and unnecessarily weaken what you say.

      Past that if the objective is to test something, the best arguments should be presented as forcefully as possible – that is not arrogant. I expect the same out of every one else.
      I also expect their strongest counters, and they should expect mine.

      Further, I have been making most of these arguments for a long time.
      They have stood up and been refined, it is reasonable for me to have confidence in them.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 5, 2017 8:16 am

        Dave,

        I like your thick skin and what I have previously referred to as your “boldness”. Yes, if thinkers are to approach Truth and truths, they can’t be too sensitive and squeamish. OK. I’ll say this is one of your strengths.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 4:27 pm

      Pat

      “I know you are somewhere “on the spectrum,” so to speak,”

      I specifically want to address this – as it continues to come up at times here.

      My guess is that DD’s “fatberger”, and “hogberger” remarks are some word play with “aspbergers”

      Netflix has a series “atypical” that I think is fantastic.

      Many friends even family have noted that some aspects of my personality resemble that of the protagonist who is autistic.

      And TNM is not the first place someone has questioned whether I am autistic.

      I do not care if this is true. I am who I am. If that is autistic or aspergers, or “on the spectrum” I am fine with that.

      Ultimately that is a question of style. I posted the feinberg quote that science is not about authority, that works all ways. An argument is true whether made by Hitler or Stalin or an idiot savant, or someone with autism.

      That said I have actually been tested several times for autism, and aspergers is just a particular high functioning form. I test as mid spectrum – i.e. normal.

      While I have some personality and behavioral traits that are strong in people with autism.
      I have several traits that are never found with people with autism.

      One of those is actually evidenced by Sam the protagonist in Atypical.
      For Sam every discussion loops back to antarctica everything about life must be analyszed in the context of antarctica

      I know that to some here, my world seems to revolve around “force”,
      but I can assure you it does not.
      TNM is one of the venues in which I discuss that issue.

      My wife and children will assure you that I can as relentlessly discuss myriads of other topics.

      The specific characteristic being address is a personality trait called “systemitization”.
      It is extremely strong in libertarians, and is practically the defining personality trait for libertarians
      While it is extremely weak in people “on the spectrum”.

      Regardless, the fact that I do not have autism, or aspergers does not mean that I am not aware of the fact that I have some traits that are commonly found with people who do.

      I do get irritated by the autism and aspergers references,

      Primarily because they are wrong and they are an effort to deflect.

      I use TNM as a means of learning.

      Since I can only rarely get a good argument. I am working on other skills.

      I have been working for sometime on my ability to address something quickly.

      When I need to I am quite capable of succinct high quality writing. But it can take an entire day to get something down to a few paragraphs.
      I am not spending that kind of time on TNM.

      Most of what I post I write very fast, and I do not go back and revise it – and that is evident from the posts. I am actually working to improve that but the goal is to get more succinct and better organized without additional time invested.

      I am also using Roby. He constantly transforms every exchange into one about him, or about me. I am deliberately, explicitly using him to try to learn techniques for dealing with that.
      Thus far I am not doing very well.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 5, 2017 9:12 am

        Dave,

        I appreciate your honesty regarding autism, Asperger’s, etc. Those are only labels, merely labels, and labels are inherently inaccurate. As a rule, I don’t like labels. That’s why I said “on the spectrum” and “so to speak”. We could say that everyone on Earth is “on the spectrum” or somewhere along the line.

        Yes, you show some of the traits of whatever you want to call the various combinations of those traits .

        In its perhaps simplest form, it is just being atypical.

        Yes, we are who we are. We play the cards we are dealt. It seems you are making conscious efforts with various techniques, etc. Partly now I feel “bad” or guilty, but not so much to stop being honest. But since the references to such labels annoys you, I will be respectful. I also have some theories about why you piss me off, and Roby and others.

        For me, it is because some of your tendencies violate something that I operate on, which we might call “the man code”. The “man code” is an unwritten code that is learned and is not being passed down to many of the male millennials these days. Some of millennials are not aware of it ( due to a combination of divorced families, cultural shifts via TV and immigration, etc.,). Some men distance themselves from it (the man code) for various reasons, but I still largely operate by the man code.

        One of the tenets of the man code is that, except in certain dire circumstances, you don’t tell another man that he is wrong and you are right. Doing so is a violation on several levels, partly because men know the relative nature of things, that what is good for one person might not be good for another, and what is good one moment is subject to change in the next moment, etc., and partly because the insult of insisting one is right to another man greatly supersedes whatever point was in question. Telling another man that he is wrong is a challenge, fighting words.

        Good close friends can insult their friends in fun, and to the extreme for more fun. Strangers and acquaintances cannot.

        This might seem to some to be incongruous with debate, but it’s not. It’s why people speak in less than absolute terms: “I think you are incorrect when you say…” and “I believe x and y” and “It seems illogical” et cetera. Speaking in absolutes, as if what one is saying is the absolute, irrefutable truth, is a violation and an unwelcome challenge. There’s more that I haven’t fleshed out, but I’ve got to run.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 4:27 pm

        Pat

        You should not feel guilty.

        I know I am not “normal”. I have never been. It has never been an option, I am very comfortable with who I am.

        I do not honestly beleive in “normal”. I do not know anyone who is “normal”.

        Recognition that there is no such thing as “normal” is one significant factor in my being libertarain.

        Both the left and the right are premised that there is a “normal” – though they have different ideas of what that is, and that outside of that they have the right to “punish” people.

        Only libertarians allow people to decide who they want to be and try to acheive that
        AND to actually accept people as they are.

        With respect to “on the spectrum.”

        I expected to test high functioning just above aspergers. Mild Autism is apparently extremely common in highly intelligent people.

        I tested mid spectrum – “normal”, on numerous tests.

        But I think I arrived there by an unusally route.

        On some attributes of autism I scored very very high and on others very very low.
        The result is in the middle.
        At the same time it really isn’t, because I am not “average” on pretty much anything.

        I will also note that I post here somewhat different than in person.

        While I do have real world difficutly OCCASIONALLY because I take something litterally that was not intended litterally – I do not have a problem with abstraction.

        While I have never had anything but an appreciation for music. I have written lots of poetry, and have a pretty good art portfolio – as well as being a registered architect and a good building designer. I have also designed furniture – which my father in law built and is in my home.

        I am not Frank Llyod Wright (who I admire) or Pablo Picasso, But I am good enough to have won awards for creative endeavors as a teen. But that is not what I pursued as a carreer.

        The point is not to say I am this incredibly talented person. Better than average is not “incredibly tallented”. But it is to note that I am creative, expressive and capable of all kinds of non-literal thinking.

        At the same time 40 years of working in computing amplifies the literal aspects of your personality. Computers are ABSOLUTELY Litteral, and you must think like they do to program them.

        All that said I DELIBERATELY take some things posted here more literal than I know they were intended (I also sometimes mistakenly take things litterlally).

        I do so usually to make a point. I do not care if when you were talking about government you did not “literally” mean ue force against people and possibly kill them.

        “literally” that is what using government to accomplish something means.
        And I am not going to allow that to be elided just because you did not “literally” mean that.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 4:56 pm

        I am going to start by saying I am straight, white, and male.

        But no one in my life would ever have accused me of being “the man”.

        I was bullied alot as a kid. I spent lots of time entertaining myself.
        I built elaborate treehouses in the woods, and battleshit/rafts on the creek and played on them alone.

        In school I was the geek – though a bizarre one. The entire school knew I was the smartest person in the building, but until middle school I got B’s and C’s in everything except science.
        I just did not try hard.

        In middle school I became friends with other misfits, and started to thrive,
        I wrestled in middle school and was top of my weight class – tall and light,
        possibly because if other kids get off the buss to beat you up often enough, you get strong enough to keep them away. by HS I was sort of popular. Many of the kids who previously beat me up if they did not want to be my friends atleast wanted to be aquantances. I graduated near the top of my class.

        But I have never been into any “man thing”. I have almost no experience with male bonding.
        I was the statistician on the football team for 4 years. and run Cross Country as a senior,
        but that is still pretty far to the periphery.

        I am not trying to attack your values, just noting that they are not Mine.

        Further my family was not “male dominated” My parents were a team.
        They were both entrepenuers, they both had their own businesses.
        Entrepenuership is in my genes so to speak.
        My mother was more dominant than my father, but my father was smarter.

        Regardless, my childhood was wonderfull despite my compliants, but absolutely nothing in it would lead me towards a “man code”.

        There is a vast difference between the self reliance and individualism that my upbringing fostered, and any kind of traditional male values.

        That is not judgement, just who I am.

        Mostly I do not insult people, but I have no problems insulting bad ideas.

        Roby in particular is completely unable to distinguish. Though I think that is a common left trait.

        If you say “socialism is evil” to a socialist they here – “you hate me”.

        I am not stupid – I know the implication is there, but in my view there is still a difference between saying “you are stupid” and “these beliefs are stupid” to someone who beleives them.
        You choose what you believe, you do not mostly choose who you are.

        While I am not a “Man man”, and I am “highly aggreeable” most of the time.

        I enjoy intellectual debate. It is boxing for the mind. I am going to make my argument in the best way I possibly can relentlessly, I am going to pummel you, and I expect exactly the same in return.

        You have you “man code”, mine is different, if you beleive something strongly but you will not stand up for what you beleive. If you will not argue it forcefully, if you retreat and cry foul, then you are not my kind of “man” That I see as weak.
        While I would prefer to confront people who are challenging, even if you are not good at making your arguments – if you stand up and defend what you beleive – I respect that.

        In my own experince that IS how my values are changed or atleast what triggers changing them.

        I have zero problems going head to head with the top aithorities in their field.
        I have had email exchanges or actual debates with people like Lawrence Lessig, Lawrence Tribe, Richard Epstein, Robert Reich. …. I am not intimidated, and I have found that the best people in their field respond well and enjoy the exchange, and are very approachable.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 5:05 pm

        I appreciate what you are saying about “i beleive”.

        But ultimately I am with orwell, and I am not changing. It is unnescary and inefficient.

        Further as I wrote I have a different conception of what “being a man” is.

        I am a boxer in the intellectual space.

        Of course all metaphors have problems and Roby keeps trying to claim this is about winning, dominating, ….

        That is complex. I keep refering to JS Mill “on libertty” as i am rereading. it.

        You test ideas, values, principles in intellectual conflict.
        While the obejctive is partly to win, it is also to find the right answer.
        The right answer is that which when given the best argument by the best people to make that argument prevails.

        The objective is not for “me” to win, but for the best argument to win, but it must do so in the most rigorous test. That means I must defend my view as forcefully as I can, but that the opposing view must also receive its most forceful exposition.
        I also means that I am processing my own and the opposing arguments, and that where mine are found wanting I must change.

        That does not happen often – particularly as I get older, because I have likely encountered most of the best counter arguments already.

        But it does happen, even here. I have revised my thinking, not necescrily on bigger issues, but certainly on smaller ones,

        And I specifically recall doing so as a resutl of a point you made some time ago.

      • Roby permalink
        December 5, 2017 9:49 am

        Pat, on “the man code” that was freaking brilliant. There are so many ways of trying to express the same thing. I have used many words inefficiently to try to say what you just nailed. It made me smile.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 4:54 pm

      Pat;

      This also seems to come up constantly – though usually driven by Roby.

      I do not understand the fixation on winning, losing, conceding, arrogance, ….

      I have a giant poster in my home

      “you have not converted someone, just because you have silenced them”.

      I assume that you agree – when you agree.
      I assume when you do not comment that you do not have something you wish to say.
      That is not the same as agreement.

      Regardless, what drives me is the quest for the answers.

      This also addresses an issue that is coming to the fore in our politics today, and its relevant to TNM.

      While I would prefer a world in which we are not killing each other over ideological differences,
      short of violence, I do not inherently think that vigorous debate and strong disagreement is evil.

      I have repeatedly noted compromise is a tool – among other reasons because the goal – at least mine is NOT homogenous agreement – that is closer to my idea of hell.

      In many instances I seek conflict – that is how we test ideas and values and principles.

      I do not want Roby, or you or Jay to agree with me about everything.
      I want you to come back with your best arguments particularly about the things you believe fervently.

      I think this is also a part of much of the misunderstanding about markets.

      For the left in a competitive market – there is ultimately a winner and a loser.
      Capitalism and markets create winners and losers the cycle repeats and the winners win more and the losers lose more.

      In the real world that is both rare and unsustainable. Competition produces winners and losers.
      But the losers are not vanquished, partly the learn from the winners, and partly they go back and refine their own ideas, and they return to the conflict, and often the next time they prevail.
      The end result is NOT an ever widening gap between winners and losers. It is continuous improvement that EVERYONE benefits from.

      One of the most annoying things about the left for me, is that they refuse to learn.
      How after the experiences of the 20th century is anyone still arguing for socialism in any form ?

      Learning is difficult – and the right has its own problems returning to long disproven nonsense.
      but far less so than the left.

      Today we are fighting over whether christian bakers can be forced to bake cakes for guy weddings. Not whether it is OK for gay people to marry. When I was younger they were not allowed to exist, much less marry.

      Anyway, I am not here to “win” or demonstrate personal superiority.
      At times I have tried to use my own life experiences to demonstrate how I learned something.

      At the same time I have made many mistakes – here. It is often hard to find the appropriate line.
      Appeals to authority provoke responses that are appeals to authority.

      One persons claims of personal authority seem to demand demonstrating your own personal superior qualifications in the same or related areas.
      The determining factor in an argument should not be the credentials of those making the argument. But it is really hard not to respond in kind when you feel you can win at the other persons game.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 5, 2017 9:40 am

        Brief illustration of the man code:

        Let’s say a man is having difficulty positioning a jack underneath his car on the side of the road. Another man approaching on foot to help has several options available, in keeping with the “man code”…

        He can say, “Hey, do you mind if I give you a hand?”

        He can say, “Excuse me. I think I see a way to make that easier…

        According to the man code, he cannot say, “You’re doing that wrong.”

        If another man said that to me, I would tell him to f-off. I would rather struggle with something for another hour than allow another man to walk onto the scene and have the audacity to violate the man code with insult.

        lol

  51. Pat Riot permalink
    December 4, 2017 8:45 am

    In the past, other commenters have objected to me being so…”direct” with dhlii Dave. They came to Dave’s defense and gave me the cold shoulder. Perhaps these other commenters have thought it “small” of me to be so direct and honest with Deluge Dave, and it made the other commenters uncomfortable. (It’s funny how it’s more accepted to just hurl a few insults. To go into detail like I do to call someone out, on the other hand, is apparently cringe-worthy to some.)

    To me, it’s like this:

    If a person in the room disrupts the flow of conversation, I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt. If they persist in disrupting the flow of conversation, I will tell them to get in line and knock it off.

    If a blind, wheel-chair bound, or otherwise handicapped person disrupts the flow of conversation, I will give that person several benefits of several doubts, but then if it persists I will tell them to get in line and knock it off.

    Another option is for me to just leave the room, which I have done before, because of Deluge Dave. Maybe if Dave were limited somehow. He has some damn good insights. He keeps threads alive sometimes. He can be the ultimate foil character to prompt people’s opinion, to prompt responses. But he dominates and disrupts the flow, no? I don’t know. It’s frustrating. My solution would be this: Dave, stay here. You are valued. But shut the fuck up sometimes and let a variety of others commenters control the flow of the thread. And when you do post, summarize and limit yourself.

    • Jay permalink
      December 4, 2017 9:36 am

      He’s wired not to shut the fuck up.
      He can’t help himself. It’s like telling tRUMP to stop tweeting crap.
      Never gonna happen.

      • Pat Riot permalink
        December 4, 2017 9:55 am

        You may be correct. He may not be able to stfu. But apparently in my opinion it still needed to be said! Lol.

        He has moderated himself slightly in the past. I witnessed it. But then the string broke and the plant snapped back to it’s original orientation.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 4, 2017 8:09 pm

        Or like expecting that you will have something but insult to offer.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 4, 2017 6:11 pm

      PR, agree with your two comments, above.

      dhii: I am tying you to the ” fatberg”, I am not qualified, or inclined to do psychological analysis.
      https://dangerousminds.net/comments/disgusting_blob_the_size_of_an_airliner_removed

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 7:48 pm

      Pat;

      I recall having past debates with you on some issues.

      I do not recall a conflict where I thought you were “unfair” whatever that is.
      Or where I needed “defended”.

      “It’s funny how it’s more accepted to just hurl a few insults. To go into detail like I do to call someone out, on the other hand, is apparently cringe-worthy to some”

      Arguments stand on their merits. If they do not hold up to scrutiny – facts, logic reason, then they must be rejected.

      I take hurling insults as a sign that you do not have an argument.

      With respect to your analogy.

      The internet is not a room. In an actual room only so many conversations can occur currently,
      One person speaking actually reduces the opportunity for others to do so.

      When we invite someone to lecture – we grasp that hecklers must be silenced – otherwise the right of the speaker to speak and more importantly the right of those who came to listen are violated.

      In the real world there are physical constraints. Some of those constraints inform our laws, and some inform our norms and standards of politeness.

      Where those limitations do not exist – those laws and norms are anachronistic

      The cost of my posts to TNM is entirely born by me. If I posted 1000 times what I do now, that would have no effect on the rights and freedoms of others here.

      You asked for a change – but the change is meaningless.

      There is no “flow” but what each of use decide.

      If I go one direction and no one follows – I can continue forever – alone.

      If the rest of you go a direction, I can join or not.

      The problem you are trying to solve – does not exist. Nothing is preventing you from doing whatever you would do if I was not present.

      You are trying to pretend that something that is practically limitless is severely limited.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 7:55 pm

      Pat.

      I have touched on the last part of your post in other posts.

      I have talked about costs – there is no cost to you or anyone else here to my posts.

      But there is a high cost to me, to your suggestion.

      You say “post summaries” – as if it is easier to summarize than to stream consciousness.

      It is not.

      I do not write for a living, but real concise accurate technical writing is one part of what I do for a living. I have been published. I have written technical works for business, documentation, reports, studies, In the past 5 years I have had to produce letters and memo’s on matters that had legal consequences.

      Getting 3 pages into 3 paragraphs is incredibly difficult and time consuming.
      I beleive that I am actually pretty good at it.
      Regardless, I get paid very well when I do, and no one is paying me to post here,
      and my goals here are not to improve those skills.

  52. December 4, 2017 11:25 am

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2017/12/politico_touts_chelsea_clinton_as_possible_senate_candidate_in_arkansas.html

    GOOD GOD!!! May heaven call me home before the American Entitled Royal Family is seated in congress once again

  53. Pat Riot permalink
    December 4, 2017 12:09 pm

    The American Thinker article regarding Chelsea Clinton mentions “name recognition” and “Clinton Brand”. In general, Clintons aside, are more and more citizens moving past such superficial qualifications to back a person for office? Maybe we will actually start looking at people’s past accomplishments, the results they’ve achieved, and real details of plans and ideas for solutions? One can hope.

    • December 4, 2017 2:08 pm

      Haha!

      On the Rutgers campus, there’s a main road called Hoes Lane….it was rerouted at some point in the past, and there is a residual part of the old road that no longer connects to the main one. They renamed it “Old Hoes Lane.”

      I occasionally need to give directions to people who will end up on one or both of those roads. Never fails to amuse.

  54. Pat Riot permalink
    December 4, 2017 2:20 pm

    Let’s see…sexual misconduct…misconduct…campaign misconduct…Russian interference…Russian-American relations!

    Roby, you had some first hand glimpses and insights regarding Russian-American relations. Any news, musings, or predictions on that front from you?

    I like to be a bottom-up reporter of current American civilization, including economic activity. I have had some business recently in Southwest New Jersey, particularly Logan Township, Gloucester County where there is the Pureland Industrial Complex, one of the largest industrial complexes in the world, with 150 tenants in 100 buildings just in the 3,000 acre complex proper (not to mention the industry surrounding it). It is basically across the Delaware River from Philadelphia. Companies include Mercedez-Benz, Lockheed Martin, Home Depot, hh gregg, Rite-Aid, and Amazon. I am reporting that things there are booming a bit. Another hotel was built right next to two existing hotels and all three hotels are doing well with engineers from Germany, oil rig crews from Texas, etc. etc.

    I’m not a fan of Amazon (putting smaller brick and mortar operations out of business and clogging our highways with delivery trucks), but Amazon is building some of the longest buildings there that I have ever seen.

    I’d rather see booming industry than some of the depressed rust-belt towns I sometimes see. This has been man-on-the-street Pat Riot reporting from Southwest New Jersey.

    Oh, and people working at those companies there should be careful what they say in the workplace, lest they be accused of sexual harassment and jeopardize their jobs. Almost forgot to tie it back in!

    • Roby permalink
      December 4, 2017 3:33 pm

      I don’t know that I have anything new to add since the last you heard of me Pat. Russian intelligence agencies play a traditionally nasty level of dirty tricks, we all know many of the examples, the polonium assassination, the pcb poisoning of the Ukrainian presidential candidate who was not in their pocket, killings inside Russia of opposition figures, journalists or others who cross some line, jailings of protesters and opposition figures. The indiscriminate shooting from the roof in Kiev that backfired and set off the Ukrainian revolt against putin’s puppet. The arming of the rabble army that shot down that airliner. The “secret war” in Ukraine, the persecution of war widows who have spoken up in their grief at losing their sons in a military action that does not officially exist. On and on, very, very dark, putin’s methods, Soviet methods, KGB methods. If you go online and do a brief search you can come up with a longer list of the flavor of retaliations and attacks via the Secret services and military and some other shadowy groups putin may or may not control. That they have a set of internet trolls, hackers, and international mischief makers is obvious. That putin controls the press slightly less than Brezhnev did is also obvious and TV is the main tool for programming the naturally very patriotic Russian public.

      The average Russian is someone I can relate to, admire, like, have dinner with, play music with, talk about life with, drink, laugh. Just not politics; they have long been trained to be good patriots and follow the Russian leader.

      Watching all that prior to this last election I never would have guessed it would work here in America, that putin would team up with assange, that any conservatives or republicans at all would be willing to play the role of 21st century useful idiots. I no longer have the idea that I understand American political parties or partisans at all and what they are willing to be persuaded of in the name of politics. I am shell shocked, in disbelief, horrified. That hasn’t changed much in the last year.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 12:50 am

        Roby;

        You are likely better informed of the internal workings of Putin’s Russia, regardless there is no reason to disagree with anything you say there. I doubt any of us think that Russia is radically different than it was under communism.

        But after you leave russia you go entirely off the rails.

        Sorry Roby, Wikileaks is not and never has been controlled by Russia.

        Absolutely Assange tries to use Russia, and Russia tries to use Assange,
        Clinton tried to use Russia, and Russia tried to use Clinton – does that make Clinton a Russian mole.

        Next you go to the idiotic step of presuming Russia successfully gamed the system here.
        Please!!!! This is the greatest peice of garbage in this entire Trump Russia meme.

        Thus far the only actual evidence of Russian colaboration with a US politician is with CLINTON!!!!.
        Whether it is the U1 deal, or Fusion GPS and the Steele Dossier,
        What you have come up with regarding Trump is I beleive two completely meaningless low level contacts that yeided nothing, and at most prove there was not high level contact – because if there was there would be no reason to Talk to Natalia or whatever.

        Further as is now coming out Fusion GPS is not only actually in bed with Russia, but Fusion has been feeding the media i.e. PAYING journalists to run stories that Russia wants for years.

        It also appears that Fusion is the source for many of the leaks over the past year
        There are also strong indications that the Natalia overture to the Trump campaign was an attempt to entrap the Trump campaign. Natalia met with Simpson at Fusion immediately before and immediately after her Trump tower Meeting. Natialia has worked closely with Fusion for years.

        Even some of the leaks slightly beneficial to Trump appear to have come from Fusion – though they appear to have been deliberately intended to expose bad stories through friendly media to properly spin than and also to forestall Nunes from subpeoning Fusions Bank records.

        Just to be clear it is no secret that Fusion has been paying journalists for years to run stories that its clients – including the DNC and Russia want made public.

        So we have Fusion GPS – which really is working for Russia AND really is working for the DNC, and the Clinton campaign. That does not bother you ?

        Lets step a bit away from Fusion to the social media nonsense.
        Ignoring the stupidity of the premise that social media is somehow a magical form of brain washing that has the ability to create an irressistable urge to vote for Trump and lick the creme out of Orea’s. the actual facts still are that the mniniscule investment Russia put into social media was mostly issue rather than candidate targeted and favored clinton issues significantly over Trump issues.
        I beleive the estimate is that of the something like 100K of money spent PURPOTEDLY by Russians on Facebook adds, about 6.5K directly or indirectly benefited trump.

        I honestly do not care if the russians spent a billion and all of it favored Trump.
        If voters are so stupid that they’re vote is that easily altered – give up. Self government is impossible. But the real fact is the only people who beleive people are that gullible are people who lost an election and do not understand that they lost because of WHO THEY ARE, not a consequence of some slight of hand.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 1:54 am

        Roby,

        I too am in disbelif, shell shocked and horrified.

        I can not comprehend that you and so many on the left buy this collapsing bunch of bunk that does nothing more but make the Obama administration FBI,. DOJ, Mueller, Comey, Rosenstein stink and yet you can not understand quite simple things like:
        Clinton and the obama administration LIED about Benghazi.
        The Lied about IRSgate,
        The Lied about Clintons mail server, and Clinton was “grossly negligent” in handling clasified information.

        Please explain to me how Flynn’s minor innaccuracies in an unrecorded interview with the FBI over and exchnage with Kislyak that accomplished part of what Trump asked him too, and did not cover ground he was not to go into, is more serious than dumping thousands of classified documents onto the internet – including Drone targeting information ?

        Sorry I forgot more news of the day.

        PRIOR to the election – according to documents on wikileaks from the Podesta email hack (not the DNC hack). The Clinton campaign was contacted by the Obama white house to begin meeting to coordinate contacts and introductions to foreign leaders during the transition.

        Hopefully the same communications were sent to the campaigns of Trump, Stein, and Johnson, ortherwise it would appear that the Obama administration was showing preference regarding candidates. Lool no one doubts that Obama would have prefered Clinton – and he campaigned for her. But in his role as president, and his staff in their role as federal employees are forbidden to ACT in favor of one candidate.

        But this has two points – though the 2nd is made many many many times over.
        The Logan act is not only unconstitutional but NO ONE pays any attention to it.

        Obama was touring europe meeting with world leaders during his transition.

        While we now find out there was a spat going on between the Obama lame duck and the Trump transition over foreign policy – the Trump people told the Obama people in the strongest terms they were allowed, NOT to engage in new foreign policy initiatives that were at odds with the platform Trump had run on. That included normalizing relations with Russia and Isreal.

        The Obama administration was meanwhile rushing to complete as much as possible in foreign policy and elsewhere to do exactly that – to Lock Trump into positions at odds with his own campaign promises.

        I am hard pressed to recall a single president that has ever acted so hostilely to their successor.

        Even today Obama is in Europe trashing Trump.
        Please tell me what former president has criticized a sitting president publicly ?

        I am sorry Roby but the conduct of the left absolutely appalls me.
        You have no honor, you have no shame.

      • Roby permalink
        December 5, 2017 9:27 am

        “I doubt any of us think that Russia is radically different than it was under communism.”

        It is a far, far different country from the communist Soviet Union and from the perspective of human rights and freedom, not to mention the availability of consumer goods and food a far better one, repressive as it still is. The changes in Russia have been beyond imagination. Unfortunately they just did not remove one person rule and the KBG apparatus and methods, which did seem to be a possibility at one heady point.

        “But after you leave russia you go entirely off the rails.
        Sorry Roby, Wikileaks is not and never has been controlled by Russia.”

        I never said that Wikileaks is controlled by Russia. Not nearly. This, as usual, is your reading comprehension problem.

        “Absolutely Assange tries to use Russia, and Russia tries to use Assange,”

        Exactly as I see it. Nothing I have said should indicate otherwise unless I have used language vaguely somewhere.

        As to the remainder of your post, its off the rails. You are so entirely in the weeds on the topic of Mueller and Russian interference that I just stop reading when you go there, much better uses for my time exist.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 6:48 pm

        The moment you cede wikileaks is not controlled by Russia your argument goes down the tubes as does Russia Collusion.

        But I am going to go further

        Putin tries to use Assange, Assange tries to use Putin.
        Putin tries to use Clinton, Clinton tries to use Putin.
        Putin Tries to use Obama, Obama tries to use Putin.
        Putin tries to use Trump, Trump tries to use Putin.

        I think all of us understand all of this.

        Sometimes such efforts fail, some times they succeed, sometimes one side gets the upper hand.

        Regardless, you can pretend as you wish to beleive that the dominos fell a specific way in the 2016 election.

        What you do not have is Putin as a omnipotent cosmic player in control of the board.
        In certain aspects of this he got incredibly lucky – not by getting Trump elected – he had nothing to do with that. But in persuading the left that the election process is corrupt and rigged.
        His 100K of Facebook adds paid dividends beyond bitcoin.
        The left is eating itself.

        Finally, there is no crime in the above, and there is nothing to be done for the future.
        You seem to beleive you are entitled to pick the winners and losers in the game of international intrigue and manipulation.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 7:07 pm

        Read, don’t read,. Don’t care.

        The simplified version is you are not likely to “get Trump”,.
        But the consequences of the effort for the left are disasterous and possibly long lasting.

        There are myriads of attacks on Mueller today.
        I do not think that Trump is yet at the point he can actually do all of what is recommended – but he is close.

        But it does not matter. Mueller and Trump are engaged in a high stakes version of “Chicken”.
        And Mueller has several problems.
        Trump is not blinking, he has nothing to lose.
        Mueller has everything to lose, and is already losing it.

        There are increasing calls for Trump to clean house at DOJ/FBI,
        There are increasing calls for Trump to appont an SC to go after, Clinton or now the Obama Administration.

        Andrew McCarthy who has repeatedly said you can not have an SC if you do not have a crime,
        You can not have an SC conduct a counter intelligence investigation and use it to bring criminal charges (it is unconstitutional).
        Anyway McCarthy is esentially saying “F#$k it, what good for the goose is good for the gander.”
        The Mueller investigation is political and corrupt and the remedy is to start a paralell political investigation of the investigation, and the dodge to do so is to investigate the Iran Deal because the corrupt players in the Trump/Russia investigation are also the key players in Iran.

        Let’s see how Strzok and Rosensteain and Comey like predawn raids ?
        Lets see if they can endure a 2hr unrecorded interview without saying something that the interviewer can call a lie ?

        I think McCarthy is wrong. Just because the left goes rogue does not mean we should join them.
        I actually want the rule of law back.

        But the fact that you have someone of McCarthy’s reputation and integraty prepared to say “F#$k it” if the rules have changed so be it screw over the left using their own rules is huge.

        BTW he is far from alone.

        The Flynn indictment did some damage to Trump.
        But it has damaged Mueller too.

        Most people can not even understand what it is that Flynn purportedly lied about.
        Further Flynn is well respected. He is a 3 star general, and Mueller was leveraging his son.
        Further the absence of all the allegations regarding Flynn in the plea says to most of us, those “stories” were just that – garbage.
        The norm on a plea deal is that Mueller has agreed not to prosecute Flynn or likely his son on anything. . In return Flynn must cooperate. but that means tell the truth, not tell what Mueller wants to here. Further he must cooperate on the issues that are part of the plea.
        The plea is about communications between the incoming administration and the Russian ambassador.

        Mostly Trump has been playing nice with Flynn since the indictment.
        Flynn has good reason to beleive if he can toe a fine line between Mueller and Trump he will be pardoned eventually.

        Most of us also have a serious problem with going after someone for purportedly lying to the FBI when there is no underlying crime.

        Yes, Mueller has increased the threat to Trump.
        At the same time he is actually looking ever weaker.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 9:15 pm

      According to BAE data Michigan is positively booming right now.

      US industry has never been in an actual decline and is growing even fast today.
      But Industrial JOBS have been declining for decades and will continue to do so.

      Amazon is primarily destructive of Walmart, Target, Sears, KMart.
      There effect on small businesses is positive.

      I would also note that Amazon can NOT clogg the highways with delivery trucks.

      Unless the goods you buy are manufactured in your community – they are going to be shipped to you one way or another.

      It does nto change much if they are trucked to an Amazon distribution center near you and from their delivered to your door, or Trucked to Walmart and then carried to your door in your car.

      If you want less deliveries – you need to consume less.

  55. Anonymous permalink
    December 4, 2017 3:21 pm

    About 100 or so comments ago, Dave pointed out that the hypothetical scenario I drew would be, under current law, illegal. I agree, as I understand it, with perhaps some exceptions in the state of Nevada, one cannot create in this country a legal contract for sexual favors. Ideally, I believe there should be a legal mechanism where those who freely want to exchange favors for wealth ought to be allowed to do so. However, I now believe I am shifting away from advocating such a change, as I believe that the potential for abuse of such change would likely outweigh the benefits. Wow, I am becoming more in tune with my own desire to impose, with force of government, my moral views upon others. I want it to remain illegal for a landlord to try to negotiate a “services” cost to my daughter if she is late on her rent. That negotiation might occur wither it is legal or not, but I want the law to at least impede it. Somewhat on the same line of thinking, how many believe it is good to have laws prohibiting the sale of alcohol to minors? Many teens get their hands on alcohol anyway, but my bet is that if all alcohol/under age laws were removed, we might have even more nonconsensual sexual relations of underage teens and adolescents than we already have. I have no way of proving that, just my guess. I may not be any more authoritarian today than I was, but I feel more conscious of it now. Hurray for authoritarianism! Mike Hatcher

    • Roby permalink
      December 4, 2017 3:39 pm

      Ha! Anyone who had the desire to put an End once and for all to American libertarianism could make a worse start than hiring Dave to Sell his brand of libertarianism, starting on late night TV, then books, talk shows an extreme libertarian channel.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 2:02 am

        Or you could just read John Stuart Mill “essay on liberty”

        What I read tonight noted that views expressed in opposition to the establishment will always be attacked as “dangerous, and extreme” while those of the establishment will never be portrayed as extreme or dangerous no matter how bad they are.

        I would suggest reading “on liberty”. You will probably think you are reading me.

        Mill BTW is estimated to have the 5th highest IQ of any human ever – at 200. exceded by Liebenits, Swendsford, De Vinci and Geothe.

        My IQ is not near 200. It is also not near 130.

    • December 4, 2017 3:54 pm

      Mike, If your daughter wants to exchange sexual favors in return for rent, I know you would cringe at the thought, but why should that be illegal? If she does this freely and makes the decision herself, I see nothing that should stop her.

      I come to this decision based on the moral values in the country today, not 100 years ago when values were imposed on people based on much more conservative religious beliefs. Why should it be fine for a woman to meet a man, have sex with him freely and not get anything of value in return, but she can not meet this same individual and charge him for that same experience?

      I think some people find this objectionable when they relate prostitution to pimps controlling the activities of their girls and forcing any woman wanting to practice that trade within the pimps teritory. That is not allowing freedom for the woman and is coercing her through force to make him money off her body and that should not be legal.

      My view is there is much more chance of abuse of women if it is illegal. One, you may have a pimp or madam running an illegal business that has control of their women, they can threaten the women with any number of actions and they can force them to work when they may not want to work.

      And by the way, who is going to arrest a woman trading sex for rent?

      • Roby permalink
        December 4, 2017 5:35 pm

        I’ll bet they can arrest a man for suggesting it. And that is a good thing.

        Someone my youngest daughter met last year was talking to her and found out that she loves to travel and fly. He offered her a job as a stewardess on his own small private air service that caters to the rich. Guess what turned out to be part of her perspective duties?

        Two girls I knew in high school were so sexually exuberant that they later went into the business. Both are long dead, industry lifestyle related.

        Guess what I would do to the guy who offered my daughter that job if I could find him? Better for him that the law would deal with him.

      • December 4, 2017 7:34 pm

        Roby, yes they might be able to arrest him. But who is enforcing that? What I said was if she wants to trade something of value for equal value and she does it willingly and is not forced to make that decision, then that should be her freedom to do so.

        As for the girls you reference, what are the details of their death? Drugs, murder, or something medical. Where they in a life style where prostitution supported other dangerious activities?

        In places where prostitution is legal, most live a very high class lifestyle that most people would envy. And many of those places have health regulations to insure that STD’s are held to a minimum, unlike casual one night stands many sexually active women are involved with.

        Unlike Dave who I suspect would not support any government oversight, I think health regulations would need to be in place to insure as nuch as possible safe sex.

        Now if women enjoy intercourse, why should your beliefs make them give it away?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 3:15 am

        No I do not support any regulations.

        We have tried myriads of different forms of legalization and the best outcomes are from full legalizations and no regulation.

        There is data on this. Even health regulations just result in a black market.
        And the black market remains more dangerous than no regulation at all.

        Ron, I understand the desire to regulate.

        Where there is a serious risk of actual harm – and some health matters have that, then that is one area in which I could support regulations – if they worked, but the evidence is that they do not.

        One of the major problems with many regulations is that those regulation quite often do have real measurable positive benefits.

        I think it is likely possible to find a person who is alive to day who would possible have been dead but for PPACA. I do not think there are many, but I do not doubt that are some.

        But there are also people who are dead who would be alive, but they are harder to find.
        The evidence of unseen effects are often very hard to find.
        Our best evidence is in changes of trends.
        PPACA did not produce positive changes in life expectance trends – that inherently means that for every life it may have saved, it somewhere else killed someone.
        We MIGHT be able to find and meet the person saved. it is rare we can even identify the person killed. But the absence of a change in trends means that they existed.

        We know with prostitution the less regulated it is the safer it is.

        I have a similar problem with the war on drugs.
        Sen Schumer took the FBI off of investigations into Russian hacking and financial crimes that were costing americans $32B per year to go after Silk Road.
        Ultimately they got Ross Ulbrecht thouigh there is some evidence that they violated alot of laws to do so, and that there are major problems with the conviction.
        Regardless, it is likely he is spending the rest of his life in jail.

        Total sales on SilkRoad/year $2B and only part of that was drugs.
        Much was made during the trial that people were dying as a result of Silk Road provided drugs.
        yet extremely carefully conducted research studies have found that SR reduced the drug overdoes deaths in the US by about 6%.
        How ?

        Because the quality of drugs you get from a back alley illegal drug deal are volatile.
        Today there is a big problem with fentinnyl and carfeninyl.

        Most of us can not understand why anyone would take anything so dangerous – these are many times more dangerous than heroin.

        Inquiring into why – it turns out that heroin adicts do not want fentinyl and carfentinyl.
        Both are produced in labs, they have much shorter and less mellow highs.
        But they are cheaper, and drug dealers subsititue or cut heroin with them to save money.

        On silk Road there is an amazon like reputation system.
        Sell dangerous poor quality drugs and you get bad reviews.
        Just like ebay there is a strong drive towards quality and safety.

        Regulation does nto actually make us safer.

        To be clear where there is a real safety issue, there is no libertarian ideological impediment to regulation. Government is there to protect our rights. Serious safety risks that are not a free choice by all involved are inside the scope of what government can do.

        But the data is these do not work.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 2:43 am

        You can be arrested for suggesting it – prositution is illegal.
        The question we are asking is should it be.

        Was force used against your youngest daughter ? Was she free to say no ?
        I would expect that my daughter would say no. But I do not think it needs to be illegal to ask.

        You seem to think that your daughter should have a choice that was not and likely will not be offered to her.

        If I offer you a million dollars to swim in a septic tank for an hour, you can say yes and get a million dollars, you can say no and get nothing. But you can not say – you offered me a million dollars so you owe me a million dollars and I am not swimining in a septic tank because “ew” asking someone to do that should be illegal.

        The lifestyle is dangerous because it is illegal. There is plenty of data on that. The risk declines very rapidly as it is decriminalized and is extremely low when it is completely legal and unregulated.

        Further rapes and domestic violence descrease by about 13%.
        Even if legal prositution resulting in increasing deaths of prositutes, the NET effect would be a decrease in violence.

        Why would you do something to the guy who made an offer to your daughter ?

        Why is it you seem to respond to free choices with violence ?

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 4, 2017 9:18 pm

        Ron, I agree if adults want to sell services to adults, so be it. But when, if ever, does freedom that men have to pressure young women to have sex with them start imposing on the freedom of the recipient of that pressure? I maintain the venue makes huge difference, if people want to hit on each other on dating sites, chat rooms, clubs, fine. But young people are often the most financially strapped, and attractive young women that are barraged by a deluge of offers daily, I think should be protected from having to negotiate out of pressure from landlords, professors, and employers. They are free to resist those pressures, I believe is an unfair burden on them. Heck, I see multiple people on this site acting like it is so unbearable to put up with one guy deluging the site with many long comments, yet do they think it is ok for young women to have to put up with sexual propositions when they are just trying to get an apartment, get their car fixed, or get a job? There is a time and place for everything, employment and housing is not a time for sexual negotiations unless the person is actively offering said services.

        Mike Hatcher

      • December 4, 2017 11:16 pm

        Mike, I understand your thoughts. However, I question if any law is really stopping much of these practices

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 3:39 am

        So because young people are financially strapped they should not be offered opportunities to make lots of money that they are free to turn down ?

        With respect to landlords, lets try some scenarios. Maybe you can explain to me what “pressure” is ?

        Landlord advertises apartment – 20% under market rent, but requires a BJ once a month.
        Other apartments are available at market rates.

        Ew ? Sure. Should it be illegal ? What is the pressure ? If you do not accept this better than normal deal, you will have to ? Pay market price ?

        Tenant is late on rent and about to be evicted.
        Landlord says – give me a BJ and I will give you another month to come up with the rent.

        Ew ? Sure. Should it be illegal ? What is the pressure ? If you do not accept this you get evicted. If you make it illegal to offer you get evicted.

        Can you provide me a scenario that does not involve actual force, that leaves everyone with free choice – if not the choices they hope for that you can explain to me why it should be illegal ?

        Separately I have been a landlord since 2008. I have evicted tenants, I have had tenants move out during the night without paying.

        I have never asked a tenant for sexual favors. I have never heard of a real world landlord doing so. I have never had a tenant offer. And I would not accept. My tame excursions outside the sexual norms are consendual, occur in private, with my wife – or in my fantasy’s.
        I am really pretty dull for someone who wants to see prostitution and drugs legalized.

        But I support the freedom of everyone else to be as perverted as the want – consensually.

      • Roby permalink
        December 4, 2017 11:09 pm

        “Now if women enjoy intercourse, why should your beliefs make them give it away?”

        As Winston Churchill said, I love a good cigar, but I sometimes take it out of my mouth! (in response to a man who had 18 kids which he explained by saying that he really loved his wife).

        Ron, My jaw is still hanging down. I did not expect a Guccione impression from you! As I said above somewhere, I have given up completely on believing that I understand what people will do or believe. The world is rapidly become a Salvadore Dali painting. Maybe I am in a coma and I just dream this shit. Conservatives and putin/assange. Ron and the sexual revolution.

        Having some &*^%$ casually offer my daughter a path into the world of ass for gas (she told me about that very off handedly long after, was NOT interested) was an eye opener. Someone who is down on their luck or in a state of lostness might fall for it. And then? Some glamourous world? For how long? At what cost?

        For every NBA player there are 1000 wanabees who got nowhere. For every glamorous sex star there are a thousand who fell way short and its not pretty. Even the middle let alone old age of many who did make it is not pretty.

        And if she had taken the offer, ah, my daughter so proud, making old rich guys happy at 30000 feet. Maybe she could have a stellar career become a trophy wife, like Melania. I’d be so proud. What did you do today dear? Oh I _____ and _____ for my old man. Great, that’s wonderful. I did the brakes on the subaru.

        No, I am NOT a libertarian. And talking to libertarians makes me want to wash my ears out with soap.

      • December 4, 2017 11:49 pm

        Roby, the key to this is your daughter made the right decision in your eyes, and mine also. But prostitution is legal, its just called escort services. You arrange an evening and most everyone knows where it end up after a sizable payment.

        The numbers racket was illegal, police spent millions trying to stop it and finally the states said, if we cant fight them, we will join them. LOTTERY!

        States have found they can not fight the cartels against marijuana, so they are legalizing it. Cannabis oil is being used to control, if not stop seizures in the young to the old. Only the feds who are bought and paid for by big pharma is trying to enforce laws against it.

        Sorry, but your daughter got propositioned and no law stopped that from happening. Your daughter made a good decision. Other may make a different decision, just like people who bought thousand of illegal bets in the numbers racket or bought marijuana or cannabis oil.

        By the way, off the suject, but interesting article.
        http://abc13.com/health/for-children-with-epilepsy-marijuana-can-be-a-lifeline/2732702/

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 4:41 am

        Of all the horrible rotten things that could happen to my daughter,

        I think having someones tongue forced down her throat or hand into her crotch or grabbing her breast or pinching her ass without her permission are all far worse than being asked if she would like a well paid job traveling the world that includes sexual benefits for the boss.

        How is that worse than being asked if she would climb into a septic tank and dig the shit out ?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 4:35 am

        “Someone who is down on their luck or in a state of lostness might fall for it. And then? Some glamourous world? For how long? At what cost?”

        There are still alot of very poor and poorly treated prositutes.

        But the advent of the internet has dramatically changed things,

        There are blogs by and for prostitutes. There are a significant number of young college age women into prostitution. Very many are doing quite well. There is a woman who put herself through laws school and after completing it found that she was making more than the partners int he firm she interveiwed at and decided to delay her law career.

        As I noted in the “sex trafficing” rant, there is aparently a booming business of young adult korean women coming to the US for a couple of years, earning alot of money and returning home to get married.

        I have no doubt there are bad stories to.

        But the worst problems that many “craiglist” prostitutes in the US have is getting “outed” or getting arrested, as a record really screws up you life. It can even make getting credit difficult.

        So are you saying that the NBA should be criminalized for giving false hope to the many thousands who will never make 10M/yr ?

        You also seem to beleive that because you do not want some choice for yourself or your daughter, that everyone should be deprived of that choice.

        I do not want my daughter to go into prostitution either.
        I also do not want her to go into garbage collection,
        factory work,
        sewer cleaning,

        I can think of myriads of pretty repugnant jobs I would not want her to do.

        Dealing with my fathers dying enlightened me to alot of other really crappy jobs that people – mostly women do, that none of them should be ashamed of.

        Personal care for the elderly is pretty disgusting.
        When he was in the ER once the hospital forced my into the bathroom with him – he could not be left alone. After 10 minutes of trying to figure out how to wipe I had to do it for him.

        Suddenly I had alot more respect for the caregivers that were taking care of him at his home.
        Old people do not always make it to the toilet, they can not dress themselves or they do not.
        He was experiencing dimensia – which reduces inhibitions.
        My father who had never made even an off color remark in hi life was pinching asses, flashing his care givers and making sexual demands. My understanding from them is that all of this is quite common. You get all the bad parts of prostition, plus bad pay. and scatology, and occasionally blood thrown in, and now hope that you might feel good.

        I am badly recalling a quote that is something like

        Any job that you do well that supports you and your family is one you should be proud of.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 2:04 am

        There is alot of data to confrim that your view is actually correct.

      • Roby permalink
        December 5, 2017 10:00 am

        “I think having someones tongue forced down her throat or hand into her crotch or grabbing her breast or pinching her ass without her permission are all far worse than being asked if she would like a well paid job traveling the world that includes sexual benefits for the boss.”

        You are out of your mind. Completely clueless. Shove your nasty pointy libertarianism up your ass and compare that experience to whatever you want. Uggg.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 7:50 pm

        I think we have a fairly clearly defined point of disagreement.
        That is good, it allows looking at things closer.

        So let me ask you is your point specific to sex ?

        Do you think it is worse to punch someone or to ask them to clean out a septic tank for money ?

        Can I ask you why it is you think that being offered something that is good for you, but that comes with things that might be bad is worse than no offer at all ?

        I would also be interested to know what your results from the moral foundations test at yourmorals.org are ?

        I am specifically interested in your scores on purity as your reaction suggests a very high value to purity or a very strong disgust response. That is consistent with strong conservatives, not the left.

        My scores are
        Harm 2.8
        Fairness 3.3
        Loyalty 2.7
        Authority 1.5
        Purity 1.8

        Those are libertarian/liberalish.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 4, 2017 9:44 pm

      Mike;

      There is a lot of data on this. It is not funimentally different from prohibition or our drug laws.

      Government inteference in free exchange does not work.
      It does nto work even for good such as alcohol, drugs, and sex that we find the exchange of repugnant.

      Specifically with regard to sex, we know that the Swedish system works better than prohibition, and that the even more liberal system in New Zealand works better still.

      With respect to your daughter and her landlord – purportedly she has a lease.
      Unless it specifically provides for sexual services, I can not see how he land lord could compel her. If she is late – she owes a late fee per her lease.
      If she and her landlord voluntarily agree to substitute something else – I do not care.

      I have zero interest in trading sex, but as a landlord I have had numerous side arrangments with tenants. On tennant gets the use of the back yard – in return for mowing it. Another the use of the front porch in return for clearing snow, another a discount on their rent for making sure the trash is out.

      Initially these were informal, now I have them written into my leases.

      The elimination of our prostitution laws is not my big thing. But I do follow several advocates of that on Twitter, and this is actually a very well understood and documented matter.

      The problems with prostituion are worse the more severely restricted it is.
      Even Nevada while better than the rest of the country is inferior to Sweden.

      The internet is radically changing things.

      It is increasingly easy for women to run their own prostitution business – without pimps and while otherwise protecting their reputation. This is resulting in a decrease in violence and disease.
      There is even a decrease in rapes.

      We also get lots of crappy information.
      Today both the left and the right are united against “human trafficking”
      There are real problems elswhere in the world.
      But most claims of human traficing in the US are baloney.

      I beleive the FBI had a high profile case in Seatle a few years ago.

      Purportedly the biggest human trafficing bust in US history.

      What it turned out to be was two guys who discovered that young korean women were coming to the US to make money selling sex for a year of two and then returning to Korea with money to pursue their lives, figured out they could make money helping them.
      They bought apartments and services – because these guys spoke english and had credit ratings, and they provided advertising. They established rules and standards, but everything was entirely voluntary, They charged reasonable rates for services – far less than pimps, and the result was a better experience for everyone.

      That is what Human Traficing in the US means.

      Aparently about once a year the FBI and other federal agencies get together with local law enforcement to do a nationwide human traficing sweep.

      If you go on Twitter you can read what the women involved in human trafficiing say about it.
      Basically it is a month during which law enforcement makes their lives hell.

      I told you that many women manage to safely and privately do this from their homes today.

      That works well – until the police “doxx” you by arresting you and hanging a record arround your neck for the rest of your life.

      Sorry, but the sex trade is actually one of the best documented instances we have where the less government is involved the better it works.

      Even health and safety regulations on the sex trade – something I would guess everyone thinks are a good idea – based on the real world data and experience make things WORSE.

      When you regulate prostitution – that results in alot more unregulated black market prostitution – even when prostutiion is legal.

      Good intentioned regulations still produce unintended consequences.

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 4, 2017 10:36 pm

        Dave, I acknowledge that legalizing prostitution is not something you are passionately fighting for, nor am I opposing it. But I don’t know what real world data you speak of when you say less government involved the better it works. In Nevada, where prostitution has been legal for sometime, I believe you will find that regulation has increased, for example, now in the brothels condoms are mandatory (I believe that law came about in the late 80’s or early 90’s). I honestly don’t know if after the increased regulation that STI’s among sex workers went up, down, or remained the same. But I would wager you that the rate did not go up. If it did go down, it may not have been due to the regulation, maybe people just became more aware and concerned about AIDS and such, but I really doubt you have data to show that regulation in places where prostitution is legal, has made things worse. I don’t know anywhere where there is complete non-regulation, Sudan? I don’t know, what are your metrics? Do you have data on how many times a prostitute in a legal brothel gets more violently attacked then she agreed to? What percent of time she successfully is able to win a suit against her attacker or how many times the mobster that owns that legal brothel just takes payment for his damaged property and lets the attacker go? I’d like to look at your data.

        Mike Hatcher-
        Oh side note, I was the first one to mention my daughter in this thread-upon reflection, I should have used more impersonal terms. Wither my daughter ever became an exotic dancer or joined a convent (or both) would not be for me to discuss. I have invited her to read this blog in the past, and I’m going to inviter her again. I’m pretty sure with my invitation she will read this article, not sure I can coax her into commenting or not.

      • December 4, 2017 11:26 pm

        Mike just keep in mind when discussing issues such as this, I am in the Libertarian camp when it comes to personal behavior as long as it does not harm others and it is consenting adults. You can name almost any law that regulates behavior and I most likely would not support that law.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 4:05 am

        Mike;

        We have many datapoints regarding prostition.
        Nevada represents a legal but highly regulated state.

        We have further data from Sweden, the netherlands, and New Zealand – as well as some other places.

        We also have some interesting data from before and after Craiglist got intimidated out of running adds, and after Kamela Harris shutdown the back page.

        I do not keep track of this in the same way I do some economic issues – though I do follow a few posters on Twitter who periodically link to studies.
        And there are alot of them What sociologist would not want to do field research on prostitution.

        You can also google for information.

        I am not sure quite were NZ is at the moment I am not sure whether they fully leglaized without regulation and then backpedaled an adopted some regulation or the other way arround,
        But I know we have comparisons of fully deregulated to safety regulated.

        BTW we have much the same data on drug legalization.

        The story is pretty universally the same.
        Legalizing “victimless crimes” does not reduce the activity. It might slightly increase it.
        But it dramaticially lowers violent crime and it makes those “in the life” much safer.

        Decriminalization is better than criminalized,
        legalized is better than decriminalized,
        unregulated is better and safer than regulated.

        Drugs, prostitution – does not matter.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 4:15 am

        Mike;

        I seem to recall something on Netflix concerning prostitution that specifically addressed Nevada,
        They actually noted traffic back and forth between NV and LA,
        Because though there were some advantages to NV, illegal prostitution in LA actually gave the prostitutes more control of their lives and greater income.

        the regulation in NV, requires Brothels, and the brothel owners are the ones who profit the most, further because they have a state guaranteed monopoly the actual prostitutes end up with far less freedom and control – but little legal risk.

        Yes, there is data that says that regulation in places where prostituion is legal has made things worse.

        I beleive one of the big datapoints on that is New Zealand.

        Where they found that legalized but regulated prostitution resulted in a black market.
        Because complying with regulations is expensive and prostition is often a very low skill job for poor women. Regulation creates barriers to entry – you can not get tested to get started without alot of money. But you can on the black market.

        Laws – particularly those that attempt to change human nature do not stop the activity they seek to sanction, they just drive it underground.

        Criminalizing homosequality did not make it go away.

  56. Jay permalink
    December 4, 2017 5:36 pm

    Despicable Donald
    Despicable GOPP: Grand Old Pederest Party

    • Jay permalink
      December 4, 2017 9:33 pm

      GOPP- Grand Old Putrid Party

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 3:51 am

        What is the DNC doing to Biden, Conyers, Franken ? What did they do to Clinton ?

        I am very disappointed in the GOP, and even more disappointed in the people of Alabama.
        I am disappointed that they are not BETTER than democrats.

        I read that the majority of people in Alabama do not beleive the Moore allegations.
        Why ? Because they do not trust the media.

        I grasp that you do not understand this but people do not trust the media – for good reason
        https://www.politico.com/story/2011/09/pew-opinion-of-media-never-worse-064261

        The left and the media have burned their own credibility.

        You are constantly ranting that Trump lies.

        Guess what people beleive the media is accurate about 25% of the time.

        I have noted before that I do not care that the press leans heavily to the left – and I do not.

        Because in a free market people will see those biases and make their own judgements.

        And the result is we do not trust the press anymore.

        You keep noting Trump’s approval is in the toilet – and it is, just above everybody else.
        Being the lest repugnant choice is a dirty way to win, but it still wins.

        It does nto matter how low Trump’s approval rating is
        It matter whether it is higher or lower than his enemies – and it is still significantly higher.

        I can not get anything recent but after Comey testified – his approval rating was 4 points below Trumps.

        Currently the government approval rating is 1/2 Trumps.

      • Jay permalink
        December 5, 2017 4:43 pm

        Biden, Conyers, Franken In Reverse order:

        Franken apologized, invited an investigation, but overall, as detained here by others, his inappropriateness doesn’t rise to removal from office.

        Conyers deserves to go, and IS going-to retire. Bye bye. I never liked him, a blustering fool I thought.

        Biden didn’t do anything inappropriate enough to even deserve censure. His is the same impulse to be openly affectionate I see frequently in public gatherings, or did in the near past. My wife’s a middle school art teacher. Some of her students (ages 10 to 12) are cute as hell. I go to see school shows and exhibitions occasionally, and get a chance to chat with them. In previous years some of them would hug my wife, in thanks, and give me a hug as an innocent bystander. Sometimes parents would exchange hugs with us as well. Now we can’t allow that to happen. Who knows who’s taking cell phone photos that can come back to haunt you.

        Madness in this society is contageous and viral.
        Don’t be surprised to see the next wave of outrage against dog petting harrisment of your neighbor’s pets.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 2:18 am

        Franken, should resign.
        But he wont.
        Moore should not be elected, but he will.
        He should not be seated, but he will.
        There is really nothing the Senate can do about either but strip them of committee assignments and perqs.

        Conyer is gone – should have happened long ago.

        Biden is not in office. But his actual conduct is worse than Trumps or Frankens.

        Trump never should have been elected,
        but both parties ran deeply flawed candidates and we had to get one of them.

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 2:00 pm

        “Franken, should resign.
        But he wont.”

        Hummm. And if he does resign tomorrow as is being reported, will you shut up for a week?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 4:57 pm

        No, but I will demand that the senate impeach Moor when he wins.

        But they won’t.

        I would be happy to be proven wrong on all counts.

      • December 6, 2017 5:19 pm

        There has never been a senator expelled from thr senate for action occurring before they took office. Voters vote and if they overlook past behaviors, the senate accepts those voters decision.

        Could happen if same behaviors occur while in office

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 5:46 pm

        William Lorimer
        the Senate expelled Lorimer on July 13, 1912.

        http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/commentary/ct-perspec-flash-lorimer-william-senate-roy-moore-1203-20171127-story,amp.html

      • December 6, 2017 10:34 pm

        Dave ” William Lorimer”
        That is much different than actions before being elected. That is part of being elected, same as actions as a sitting official

    • dhlii permalink
      December 5, 2017 2:51 am

      Wienstein,
      Biden
      Clinton
      ‘Frankin
      Conyers
      Tobak
      Spacey
      Halperin
      Lauer
      Keillor
      Rose
      Weiseltier
      Stone
      Affleck
      Ratner
      Hoffman
      Fish
      Oreske
      Sweeney
      Kihuen
      Hockenberry

      Republicans ?

      • December 5, 2017 4:46 am

        Roger Ailes, Bill O’Reilly, Roy Moore, and potentially Donald Trump. The Democrats clearly outnumber the Republicans (mainly because of the Hollywood/media connection), but imagine the fallout if a parade of Trump accusers steps forward.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 5:34 am

        Rick;

        My point to Jay is not that all democrats are pervs, or even that democrats are more likely to be pervs.

        What the past 6 months has demonstrated is that the pretense that this is somehow a problem uniquely or mostly about the right is total crap.

        I think this is a worse problem for the left – not because of numbers – I do not think the stories popping up represent a statistically valid sample. But because the left has made women’s issues into a core value, and they have been found to be deeply hypocritical.

        Moore getting elected revolts me.

        Ailes and OReilly were canned long ago – not soon enough but still well before this mess.
        I am proud that the Murdock family was prepared to terminate important revenue generating forces in their empire, and they did so before everyone was doing it.

        I am revolted that republicans in Alabama are likely to send Moore to the Senate.

        I did not vote for Trump. I probably was not going to anyway. But the access Hollywood tape foreclosed any possiblitily.

        But I could not vote for Hillary for very nearly the same reasons.
        What Hillary did to Bill’s victims is not much better than what Bill did,
        What Trump did is not as bad as Hillary – just on this issue.

        At this point do you really think more Trump accusers are coming forward ?
        One of the things about this going so public right now, is that once someone has been accused and enough time has passed, probably that is the extent of the story.

        Franken now has 6 accusers. Nearly all are but grabs as I understand.
        Tweeden is the anomaly. Might there be half a dozen more but grabs ? Sure.
        I do not think we are going to come up with a Franken rape accuser.

        I think the situation with Trump is more certain.
        Anything that has not come out of the woodwork by now either does not exist or is not coming out ever.

        That does not mean I condone Trump. Only that I think we have an accurate picture of his conduct with women – not as bad as Biden, worse than Franken.
        Certainly not Clinton or Moore.

        I think I am close to alone, in that I hope more of this comes out. I hope more prominent people are fired for sexual harrassment.

        I am not comfortable with Pat’s self described behavior – but that is NOT what these people are doing.

        At the same time as we are discussing prostitution – where I appear almost at the opposite extreme, I do not care that someone offers money or a job or …. for sex.

        But those positions are not really at odds.
        The distinction is free choice.

      • Ron P permalink
        December 5, 2017 12:18 pm

        Rick, define fallout. We already had one president accused of rape by multiple women and nothing happened until the BJ in the oval office and a lie following. How much worse can it get?

      • December 5, 2017 10:17 am

        Rick, I believe that there has been a parade of Trump accusers:

        https://www.npr.org/2016/10/13/497799354/a-list-of-donald-trumps-accusers-of-inappropriate-sexual-conduct

      • Roby permalink
        December 5, 2017 10:54 am

        Priscilla, I had the plan of posting the stories of the trump accusers one by one, one a day with no further comment. When Rick made this post on teh epidemic I was very surprised by his lack of explicit mention of trumps accusers in it, an omission in my opinion. I was miffed, had theories that his newly found trump sympathy had gotten the better. But I decided that Ricks blog has been consumed by trump trump trump for much of two years and if Rick wanted a respite and a redirect from everything being all about trump all the time I would honor that. So I did not do that (post the accusers one by one, which would have been powerful).

        Now that we are well into this discussion and Rick himself has brought up trumps accusers here is a link to an excellent piece that covers the whole nine yards. I won’t do it one by one, I should, but it would be repetitive and I am on a crusade against repetitive Dave. So I will be consistent.

        Now, if Franken and Conyers need to fall, then trump does as well. I believe they all need to fall.

        http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/politics/factcheck/ct-trump-sexual-misconduct-fact-check-20171122-story.html

  57. Anonymous permalink
    December 5, 2017 12:00 am

    Ron, I can relate. In fact, until this discussion, I thought I was quite Libertarian too. But I am discovering there is more conservatism in me than Libertarian on this subject. In an attempt to establish a baseline, you would agree there should be laws related to age, do you not? Age of consent? Assuming you agree, while I doubt I can get you there, I can take the fact that to a far lesser extent than children, since women on the average are physically weaker and men tend to be more aggressive, I can get to a place where we can have laws to help protect them. Shoot, maybe even allow them separate shower rooms from men. Mike Hatcher

    • December 5, 2017 12:48 am

      Mike, As I said in an earlier posting, as long as the behaviors does not harm anyone and the actions occur between two CONSENTING ADULTS, then in most cases I would not support laws prohibiting those actions. ie escort services.

      Now I am not so Libertarian to not want some regulations to insure safety in the trade from one person to another. Just as we have health regulations and laws regulating the production and distribution of alcohol, there should be laws regulating the production and distribution of marijuana, cannabis oil and prostitution (and currently with escorts, there is no health oversight).

      And when it comes to kids, I want the book thrown at the perp. I would prefer life in prison without parole. No plea deal, no nothing. For instance, someone transporting child pornography faces a sentence of 5-20 years in federal prison. 5 years is a slap on the wrist given what the kids face in life. The minimum, no parole should start at 20, not end there.

      As with any behavioral modification laws, they do not modify behaviors. There are still 25% or so of the drivers and passengers that do not use seat belts. There are still many motorcycle riders that do not use helmets and when they do, many use some WW2 war helmet that will do little good in an impact. Thousands still use marijuana, even in states where it is illegal. we need behavioral modification efforts based on the smoking model where money is put toward prevention and not enforcement of prohibition laws. In 1960 51% of americans smoked. Last year it was around 16%. Much of this decline is due to education, not prevention.

      We have laws today that are suppose to protect women who are abused, raped or in some way attacked by a man. Those would not change. Just like Roby’s daughter that was offered “gas for ass”, that was solicitation and is illegal. A complaint could be filed and police report taken. Just like all prohibition laws, would an officer had time to investigate? That also would not change.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 5:12 am

        Elsewhere I noted that “systemizing” is an attribute that is strongly associated with libertarians (and very weak to non-existant in people with autism).

        Another personality trait that is strongly associated with libertarains is a lack of disgust.
        Conservatives score very high on disgust, libertarians very low, progressives in the middle.

        This is from Prof. Haidt’s work on moral foundations.

        This would be why conservatives have problems with homosexuality and libertarians don’t.

        I would also suggest looking at Haidt’s work on moral foundations – you can test your own levels on I think it is his 6 moral foundations and then see if your personal foundations align with your ideology. Mine do strongly.

        I do not as an example think that being asked to do something repugnant – so long as I am free to choose, should ever be prohibited. How is someone better off by having fewer choices, even if the additional choice is unappealing.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 5, 2017 4:56 am

      We – particularly in the US go nuts when it comes to kids.

      I read about James Levine, and though the ew factor is huge, I can not see where he committed a crime. Voluntary sexual relations with an overage male is not a crime.

      My wife deals with lots of sex crimes appeals and Age is a huge factor.
      We do see situations where a 19yr old goes to jail – or atleast gets listed for life as a sex offender for having sex with a 17 year old.

      But generally I do not think that we should be pimping out 14yr olds.

      A particularly problematic area for libertarains is the legal protections afforded to those who really do not have the capacity to make choices for themselves.

      The young, the old and those with mental capacity issues.

      From personal experience government is able to step in an F’p someones live on claims of incapactiy far too easily.

      Regardless, incapacity poses a huge problem – because it is not binary.
      My father was capable of deciding that he wanted to forgoe treatment, knowing he would die, that he wanted to stay in his home, long after he was incapable of paying his own bills.
      He was also capable of paying his own bills long after he was no longer capable of running his own business.

      To the extent possible government should be constrained by BRIGHT LINES.
      But drawing bight lines arround issues of capacity is impossible.

      Some 14yr olds are more mature than 20 year olds.

      To what extent should someone with an IQ of 70 be given control of their own lives ?
      What about if two very low IQ people get married ? Have kids ?

      Not easy questions. Not ones that you can craft nice clean clear laws on.

      But the fact that there are a few hard questions that we can not define cleanly and that are going to involve government – does not mean that where we can easily say – leave people the freedom to make their own choice, should invite government fo jump in.

  58. dhlii permalink
    December 5, 2017 1:38 am

    So what have I learned today ?

    FBI Agent Peter Strzok:
    His texts indicating bias and his affair with a lawyer working for McCabe came to DOJ’s attention resulting in his reassignment as a result of an IG investigation into Strzok and particularly his role in the Clinton Email Server investigation. At this time to my knowledge we know absolutely nothing about why Strzok is being investigated by the IG in that regard.
    Strzok is a very senior FBI agent. He is the #1 agent with respect to Russia. This becomes important later.
    Strzok is the agent who conducted the botched interview of Clinton regarding her email server.
    Strzok is the agent responsible for several edits to Comey’s press conference condemning clinton but refusing to prosecute. Of those edits he is responsible for changing “grossly negligent” to careless, and apparently the phrase that no reasonable prosecutor would prosecute.
    Strzok is also the agent who took Micheal Flynn’s statement that got Flynn into hot water.
    We are now learning more of that event and my prior claim that it looked like entrappment is far stronger now.
    Because Strzok is the FBI expert on Russia he would have reviewed the Kislyak transcripts BEFORE interviewing Flynn. So he knew what was said before he asked. That means this was not an investigation, it was an interview of a target. There are further reasons to beleive that.
    Flynn was called by andrew McCabe at FBI and told that agents were on their way over to review security procedures – again Flynn was setup. Flynn was expecting some low level agents who were going to go over process and procedures with him. He was not expecting to be interviewed.
    No one sane agrees to be interviewed by the FBI without prior preparation and without an attorney present. Clinton had several months to prepare for her interveiw with Strzok and the meaterial to be covered int eh interview was established before the interview, further she had Cheryl Mill her attorney present. Flynn found himself being asked by the senior FBI agent on Russian affairs to sit down for an interview – at this point Flynn did the stupidest thing in his life and instead of saying – I do not have time for this now, submit a list of questions and schedule something with my attorney did what far to many people of integrity do and said – sure lets get this over with.

    As another FBI investigator has just stated – let me interview you for 2 hours, and I guarantee you I will be able to charge you with lying to the FBI.
    It also appears at the moment that like the Clinton Interview the Flynn interview was NOT recorded. Therefore the claim that Flynn lied is rooted solely in Strzok’s notes on his 302.
    Several people are now suggesting given Strzok’s increasingly evident bias, that the 2nd agent be tossed infront of a grand jury and questioned, because it is entirely possible that Strzok is misrepresenting Flynn’s answers.

    This still gets worse. As Dershowitz points out repeatedly in all cases of crim-in-falsi basically lying under oath, in sworn statements or statements to the FBI,
    the ly must be MATERIAL. Material has a legal meaning, an it is not “about something I think is important”, it actually has to be about either a crime or about a topic key to the investigation.
    Given that there is no actual investigation here, and was no alleged crime there is no materiality.

    Further Flynn was the NSA, despite the fact that Strzok was interviewing him – again absent and actual criminal investigation Flynn actually gets to decide what Strzok is allowed to be told.

    One of the idiocies of this entire mess is this bizarre presumption that Those near the top of the chain of command are answerable to those at the bottom.
    Flynn’s answers to Strzok were vague and incomplete, that is not the same as a “lie” depending on the circumstances. Given the nature of the maturial being discussed – and commucincations involving the Russian ambassodor are highly classified need to know, It is totally insance that Strzok would ask and Flynn would answer anything but generically absent a great deal of preperatory work – including verifying that Strzok had the appropriate clearances for the information.
    Put simply the entire interview appears to have had no purpose but to setup Flynn.

    Next Strzok takes this back to the FBI, and the next thing we know Sally Yates is pummeling Pence and Trump demanding Flynn’s head – because he can be “blackmailed” by the russians.
    This claim has always been insane to me. How exactly do you bloackmail someone for less than accurate statements made in secret that you are never going to be able to find out.
    The only way Flynn could be blackmailed by the Russians would be if Kislyak had deeply placed moles in the FBI. But even if this managed to get more broadly diseminated,
    Neutering the blackmail is trivial – you go to Pence, Trump whoever and clarify whatever you reported.

    There is actually video of Trump ruminating aimlessly on the day he accepted Flynn’s resignation. It is pretty bad – because it is apparent that Trump does not understand why Flynn had to resign.
    He is aware of Flynn;s contact with Kislyak – as we are now learning – though Trump touches on that in the video, Flynn was directed to contact Kislyak, and directed to persuade Russia to not retaliate for sancitons and hopefully to get Russia to veto the US security council resolution condemning Israel. In otherwords there is no part of Flynn’s communications with Kislyak that did not have prior sanction, and there was nothing that Trump did not know about it.
    So Trump is muttering because his NSA is resigning for lying, and Trump can not figure out what he lied about.

    NEITHER CAN THE REST OF US!!!.

    This Flynn Plea really has me Pissed, it is dredging up all kinds of issues that have nothing to do with Trump, and everything to do with Flynn and nasty politics by Obama surogates.

    Flynn was fired by Obama as DNI, because Flynn had a significant policy difference regarding intelligence with the CIA, NSA, and National Security advisor.
    The difference was the Flynn felt our intelligence gathering was not heavily enough focussed on getting actionalable intelligence for military actions against out enemies, that our intelligence gathering was too heavily politically focused. Meaning we were more interested in what putin or Osama was thinking that what he was planing or doing.
    While I agree with Flynn, that is irrelevant, It is a legitimate policy difference, and he can be fired for it.
    But the effort to “get Flynn” when he returned with Obama as National Security advisor looks far too much like an orchestrated effort by the people who fired him in the first place to assure that:
    He stayed fired, that he had no opertunity to change US policy on intelligence, and that he did not end up being any of their boss essentially.
    This ignores the separate issue that Flynn was also at odds with the Iran deal and made clear that as NSA he intended to tear it to peices, and that as a result several key Obama surogates who were instrumental to the IRan deal – such as Rhoads were out to get Flynn.
    Rhoads BTW is also a highly likely source for much of what has been leaked.

    And I have only covered the Strzok/Flynn mess while there have been several other releases of information damaging to the FBI, DOJ, or the Obama administration.
    Such as it is increasingly evident that the FBI and DOJ “obstructed Justice” regarding the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting.

  59. Anonymous permalink
    December 5, 2017 7:24 am

    I would not call some ambiguous reference to the country of New Zealand and some vague recollection of something you watched on Netflix a whole lot of data. I’m not saying you are wrong about your conclusions, but you have failed to substantiate your claim that there is a lot of data. It makes sense that if a sex worker doesn’t have to pay for testing, that saves the worker money, it might possibly inhibit how much he or she earns, for all I know, it might increase their earnings because they might get more customers who don’t want to use protection than having to do so, but over the course of their career, those who save money from testing or earn more business by not requiring condom use, well they might just end up with higher medical costs, we don’t know, there doesn’t appear to be any data. Ok buddy, I’ll go and look myself, but I’m not sure I’ll be that objective since I have already staked out my position. By the way, I already watched a show too, it was supposedly a documentary. The conclusion was that sex workers in regulated locations might possibly be a little better off than those in unregulated places, but both places were pretty dreadful and full of violence. Decriminalization and deregulation are, as I know that you know, two separate things. Problem as I see it is we don’t have much to compare to on either subject. Mike Hatcher

    • Jay permalink
      December 5, 2017 11:27 am

      Roby, write it out in detail; I’m positive it’s publishable.
      (Do it!)

      • Roby permalink
        December 5, 2017 12:36 pm

        Jay, the drummer in my former band has a native gift for telling stories of his rough and tumble youth. Blowing shit up, like a hunting camp or a 52 plymouth with his group of rowdy friend (they only blew their own shit up, usually when totally pissed.) I’ve told him that he should make a career out of that, at least record the stories online or something. His answer: I can’t tell those stories in public, They’re all true!

        Goes for me as well, I would disrupt my life and my family’s as well if I went public. Some of the people involved are dead. Some aren’t. There would be repercussions. Fraid its my own little chuckle and that is where it ends. It would make a good sort of Garrison Keillor rambling fantastic monologue on PHC. Except that it is not a fantasy.

        Maybe I can pull a Mark Twain and seal the records till after I am gone.

        I’ve told a small part of the story here before but I will repeat it for you, the whole adventure began innocently when I saved the article in the UVM student newspaper where some stoner was talking the pothead lingo in an article about how rippin the annual 4/20 smoke in had been and I mailed that stoner article off to all the state newspapers along with an anonymous phony letter from the UVM pot club in my best stoner impersonation inviting them to come and cover the next event, it was going to be bitchin. Which the papers took me up on, front page photos and article,editorials mentioning my phony invitation letter as an example of how out of control the stoners were at UVM, frequent follow ups on UVM.

        Then, it happened that a good friend of mine, James Dwinell, who had been the chair of the Vermont GOP, started a sort of conservative point of view online newsletter that went out to all of the political community in Vermont. I covered the UVM beat for him. Then 9/11 happened, Ward Churchill got invited to speak at UVM, the campus commies blamed 9/11 on Americans, Howard ZInn showed up and drew every rasta wannabee from 500 miles and I wrote about it all in sarcastic detail for James’ newsletter. Everyone in government got an earful, UVM trustees too.

        From my father. who is an expert on educational college funding as e.g. among other things a college president and the former chancellor of Higher Ed in a large midwestern state, I learned that UVM was far too large an institution compared to the state population and budget of Vermont. They have the highest tuition of any public university because so little of that contribution comes from the state, which is a big problem. No one wants to have the highest tuition in the country. But, that contribution from the state, small as it is, is still crucial and cutting it meant disaster, unaffordability, thus leverage on the Universtity to get things under control.

        So, armed with that knowledge we pushed hard on the UVM craziness in James’ newsletter. Even the dem dominated state government under Howard Dean (and I had another series of pranks I won’t go into on Howard Dean and the the state’s largest ridiculously liberal leaning news paper and its editorial writers) was repulsed by the left wing nuttery at UVM and demanded a change if they were going to avoid cutting funding. Between 4/20 day defences by then-president Ramaley, and the condemnations of America following 9/11 by louder than everyone campus marxists, I painted a pretty dramatic birds eye view description of UVM being run over by nutty pot heads and far lefties. Ramaley went quickly, she was replaced by the sane former Gov. Salmon. He handed me my Ph.D when I graduated. He had no idea who he was handing it to. Everything I had done was anonymous.

        There is a lot more to it that followed, Dean ran for POTUS. Vermont had a ridiculous Supreme Court decision that led to a statewide property tax, there was a revolt that sent the legislature to the GOP for the first in a generation, the liberal press disgraced themselves with their propaganda and were full of obnoxious and easily punctured personalities. an actual far left progressive party got some traction and started to hurt the democrats leading to liberal-far left warfare that I found ways to provoke prankwise. I had easy pickins from a wide number of targets. It all happened while I was a grad student and single parent, but I found the time to be a guerilla.

        Anyhow that is how my career as a guerilla political warrior got started, I pranked the 4/20 pot smoke in day and it all took off from there. I’m sure our libertarians won’t approve. I hate pot and I hate the connection between smoking it and becoming a stupid glassy eyed semi- or full marxist. I’m proud of having stopped it.

        In your face libertarians, with your prostitutes and drugs. Go back to Amsterdam.

      • Jay permalink
        December 5, 2017 5:40 pm

        I’m still recommending you write it out, but as a screenplay in historical context, title it Revenge of the Guerilla Political Warrior, make yourself the main character, throw in some good music, a little college romance (no groping, but semi nudity OK),a good comedic actor to play Howard Dean, and Netflix will be calling 😎.

        I have some reservations about your Pot reactions. I agree, the glassy eyed user is on a slow motion downward spiral into insentience. But for the vast majority of college age users, like alcohol for generations of predecessors, it was a rite of passage, abandoned soon after. At least that’s my recollection, from my own college years, and of my after college contemporaries, who gave up grass and other mind altering products, for milder mind-bending wine and stomach bending Whiskey. Let’s light up evolved into bottoms-up.

        In any case, you really are a fantastic writer.
        You should be doing it professionally at some level.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 2:20 am

        I do not care if Pot converts you to a marxist or kills you.

        You should still be free to buy it and to use it.

      • Roby permalink
        December 6, 2017 8:49 am

        Thanks Jay, I enjoy writing. Rick is a fantastic writer too, look where that got him, a following composed mostly of libertarians! Oh, the long line of those who wish to be writers.

        I scatter my efforts in too many directions. I play guitar, violin, viola, drums, flute. I play classical music, jazz, rock, folk, Russian and Ukrainian. I play some balalaika too and some uke.

        What if I just focused on one thing, music, one instrument, and one style? I would get much further! I am the classic ADD case. I have learned to focus when it comes to work but my avocation life outside of work goes off in so many directions that nothing gets channelled into one flow. I focused only on classical guitar about a year ago for about 2 months. The results were wonderful. And if I focused on it for a year?

        And, wasting my time on the futility of following politics and opining, I must be nuts.

        Here is a Bach cello suite (as of this year I play it on the viola as well, its wonderful, I should record that). If you are interested you can see other classical guitar pieces I recorded last year just by going into the “chuck Berry” youtube area. All of them are imperfect, full of little slips and mistakes. Lots of the 66 city band stuff as well, and miscellaneous.

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 9:23 am

        Beautiful!

        And amazing you can remember the sequence of all those notes, and make your fingers obey to dexteriously follow them.

        I’m lucky to punch in the right numbers on my tv remote…

      • Roby permalink
        December 6, 2017 9:08 am

        While I was recording my classical pieces last year, this slipped out as a blowing off steam reaction to the frustration of trying to get classical piece perfect. I sort of liked it and kept it. Its a bit Alvin Lee ish, just a quick improv.

        You’ll find that Carol of the bells arrangement in the Chuck Berry site stuff too, I never got it perfected, difficult. That is what I Should be doing with my free time, perfecting one style one instrument.

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 9:38 am

        Here’s a thought: combine music with words.
        A unique melding of classical music with your commentary. Segovia meets Springsteen.

      • Roby permalink
        December 6, 2017 10:00 am

        Jay, dexterity, coordination is my achilles heel. I have almost none. You should see my handwriting. Musical talent is not one talent, its a group of talents, its flexibility, memory, coordination, musical intelligence, the ability to focus, etc. I am very low on the scale of dexterity. I have taught people who are high on the scale, they are something totally different. I have some musical strong points but I fight my lack of dexterity and coordination via endless practice. Its genetic. If I had been born with the high dexterity/coordination then I would have been a musician. But its a difficult life, there is always someone even more gifted than even really gifted people.

        Here is what the high end of the musical talent spectrum looks like, Maxim Vengerov teaching 4 different young musicians The best of them is little girl. This is sublime, this is where the gods live. Note the Russian connection, Russians have a huge place in classical music, many of the most sublime musicians have a Russian connection. When I lived in Moscow, my joy was seeing fantastic classical music at the Tchaikovsky music hall, geniuses one after the other. For 100 rubles I could see miraculous performances.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 5, 2017 2:24 pm

      Mike;

      Correct, I did not provide you with alot of data.
      I provided you with some starting points to find it.
      Some topics I am familiar enough that I can cite specific studies from the top of my head.
      this is not one of those.

      If you want to find out about this – I have given you enough that you will be able to.
      We live in the internet era and it is incredibly easy to find things out.

      There are studies – as I have said, and usually each study results in stories in the media somewhere,
      Further there is an active online community of prostitutes, and former prostitutes.
      There are many blogs where women from the life debate issues, including legal issues, safety issue, and correct peoples misperceptions, both the overly glamorous ones and the overly dark ones. There is political advocacy and you will certainly get information about these studies from those blogs.

      Further I am pretty sure that periodically Cato, Reason and various libertarian organizations run stories – and usually provide references and links to data and studies.

      Netflix has a penchant for quasi purient documentaries – they are cheap to produce and popular

      So there are plenty of ways to find out – if you want to.

      You are free to beleive me or disbelive me.
      Or you can check it out.

      You are free to choose.

      With respect to your observations on testing – both are likely to be true and then some.
      One of the big problem with regulation is that it is one size fits all.
      Well one size never fits all, and that means there are usually myriads of different unitended consequences. You though of two – both are near certain to be true – but not UNIVERSALLY true.

      But fundimentally when government says “you can not do X” when there are a reasonable number of people who wish to do X, limited means of actually enforcing the prohibition, and no one is harmed – in the sense that force is used, that people are deprived of their free choice,
      then the law will be violated alot, and there will be a “black market in X”

      In the USSR it was estimated that the black market was 2-3 times the size of the official economy.

      With respect to resource – absolutely the quality is going to vary.
      Things on netflix are going to have a particular focus – which is making money for netflix, not objectively exploring the issue – but that does not make them useless.

      Actual objectivity does not exist – but some sources are better at it than others.

      The other thing I would note – as with drugs, and as with everything else.

      I am not EVER saying free market solutions are perfect. That legalising Drugs or Prostitution or getting rid of the FDA will bring about utopia.

      Drugs will ALWAYS have a dark side. Prostitution will always have a dark side,
      bad things that do not happen now or atleast are not often heard of will happen if you eliminate the FDA.

      One of the most difficult things to grasp about most libertarian arguments is libertarians do NOT offer utopia.

      Conservatives and progressives sell utopia. They are going to end discrimination, end the exploitation of women, end home phobia, end abortions, end violence against women, end drug overdoses, end …..

      They never succeed. They can not succeed. We know they can not succeed, but we beleive they will make things better. But they do not – atleast not NET. Obviously the make some things better.

      Libertarians better understand human nature. If somethjing is happening – it is because people want it to, and you can not stop that by making it illegal.

      If you actually want to do something about the problems associated with drugs, you must change people. That is very hard, probably not even completely possible, regardless, you do not do it with laws. If it is going to happen – it happens over time, as society learns more, or our values change.

      In my lifetime the world has shifted cataclymiscally with respect to homosexuality.
      That shift did not occur as a consequence of laws. In nearly all cases – peoples attitudes were ahead of the law.

      Anyway legalizine drugs is not going to reduce drug addiction or end overdoses.
      It might slightly increase each. But it will radically reduce the crime and violence assocaited with drugs. It also will end the tremendous societal and government cost of the war on drugs.

      The same is true of prostitution.

      With respect to comparative aspect of criminal, decriminal, regulated, and deregulated,

      As i said there is lots of data. In the US nevada gives us alot of information on the effects of legal but highly regulated prositution.

      Prostitution is legal in the entire westen hemisphere – except the US, suriname, Haiti, Jamaica, and the bahamas.
      It is legal in nearly all of europe, it is legal in australia and new zealand.
      It is restricted in iceland, norway, sweden, india, and parts of austraila, japan.
      There is no law at all in all of indonesia, and parts of africa.

      We have plenty of ability to make comparisons.
      Further we have also seen changes in many of these places so we have before and after data.

      And as I noted socialogists love to study this.

  60. Roby permalink
    December 5, 2017 9:42 am

    My perspective on the Russian influence in our election.

    I believe that a small amount of strategically applied subterfuge can upheave a large but precarious system. I know this because once upon a time in Vermont, in Burlington, at UVM, grandiose as it may sound, I was that force.

    I succeeded in removing a left wing PC University president (a feminist activist woman), ending “4/20” day (a pot smoke held by left wingers on april 20) at UVM, planting the seeds of a funded conservative GOP student club, and completely routing the Howard Zinn flavor that a small number of Marxist activists professors and their student disciples had given to UVM. I changed the entire ideological flavor and course of a State University and due to that, to some extent, a left wing city (Bernie’s City). The ripples even affected the state.

    Most of what I did was done “underground.” There were a number of dirty tricks/pranks that I played that were spectacularly productive beyond my wildest expectations when I started with only the intention of playing some pranks on the lefties and potheads. Only one other person knows most of the story of my little campaign to turn UVM around and with it even some larger things. When I started it, out of my quirky sense of humor and being sick and tired to the Howard Zinn pothead flavor I had ideas far less ambitious.

    I did have some very significant help that I would never have got anywhere without and I used forces that already were in existence but had not been connected together by anyone previous to my little campaign. The changes that came about may well have happened in some form without me in time, but they certainly would not have happened in the way they did at the speed they did without my efforts.

    Today, I am totally disconnected from any of the people and forces that I was involved with then in my activism both underground and in public. Usually I even almost totally forget that this phase of my life ever even happened. But when I do remember I smile. Outside of my family life, I am sure it is the most consequential thing I have ever done.

    I was also a key player in a Vermont wide revolt against the overreach of the wacky left in Vermont politics, most (but not all) of what I did in that arena was not “underground” but one or two important things I did were. And, man, were they effective. And funnier than shit, satisfying.

    I could not have done what I did without the vast impersonal forces. I just so happened to be in the perfect place and had the knowledge and connections due to a series of life coincidences.

    So, I believe that subterfuge, underground pranking, dirty tricks can work and redirect a system because I did it myself once. I was not a professional at that and the resources I had at my disposal were tiny compared to those available to the professionals and long existing institutions in putin’s employ.

    I have never said or believed that putin/assange were the only wild cards in this election, far from it, simply that they were the only illegitimate ones. I am shocked at the acceptance of their help and even their points of view in some cases by some people and groups on the right.

    The ideological and partisan attacks on Mueller are predictable, pathetic, and they truly disgust me.

    Time will tell what Mueller will produce, trying to predict it and wasting words on connecting the dots when we not have access to the real intelligence information that Mueller does is a silly game, a waste of time.

    All the same, I think that some, in all of their certainty, may be in for a large surprise. It may be “the left,” it may be “the right,” it may be everyone.

    • December 5, 2017 10:15 am

      Roby, you have unambiguously explained your position here, and the fact that you speak from a background of having used “underground” tactics to achieve an outcome gives your explanation added weight and context.

      I disagree that the Mueller investigation is above reproach. I believe that there is much partisanship involved on both sides.

      I am curious as to why you believe that only one side does this, why you believe that Robert Mueller is without fault and why you believe that any criticism of his investigation so far is necessarily partisan.

      • Roby permalink
        December 5, 2017 10:42 am

        Because Mueller is from the grey world of professionals, not the political world of partisanship. He is a republican for god sakes appointed by Bush as the head of the FBI.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Mueller

        The trashing of the FBI and the American intelligence community in general by the right in the last year is one of those events that has shocked me to my core.

        Some day the right is going to miss the FBI et al after they have got done trashing it. It ain’t perfect, and intelligence is a very difficult world, even harder in a democracy. Just try living without it, which the right is bringing us to by crippling partisan cynicism.

        Our intelligence system is up against putins KGB. The Russians do not take the legs out from under their intelligence. Ours is fighting the KGB (used casually since you know what I mean by it) and the GOP.

        It scares the bejesus out of me.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 1:28 am

        As I noted in another post you are confusing one form of conflict of interest for another.

        Muellers problem is not that he is a partisan crony.

        It is that he is an insider crony.

        Trump was elected specifically to disempower the elite corp that the Comey’s and Mueller’s and Rosenstein’s inhabit.

        He campaign vigorously on specifically that. He made it clear in his inauguration address that things were going to change.

        Trump is at war with them, and they are at war back with him.

        All that is fine, the problem is that Trump won the election, and Mueller and his cronies are not entitled to reverse the results by gaming the system.

        It now appears that Flynn did not even know he was actually being interviewed by the FBI when he purportedly lied to them.
        In otherwords he thought he was exchanging conversation with a collegue and apparently did not feel the need to be precise.

        Please, Please for god’s sake let us use that standard to charge and convict members of the Obama administration, we can jail the entire bunch.

        Regardless, the standard for Mueller is NOT the nonsense you are spouting.
        It is the “APPEARANCE” of impropriety
        We have had that for some time, it just keeps getting worse.

        Thought the Recent Strzok revelations go beyond Mueller.

        Mueller is harmed by the revelations – it demonstrates poor judgement on Mueller’s part vetting his team, and it makes all the claims of partisanship against other members of the team redound all the louder – were they too really vetted that well for bias ?
        But Mueller did apparently get rid of Strzok when he found out – and should be congradulated for that.

        But with the Flynn Plea he has actually created a new problem for himself.
        Flynn’s plea is rooted in a conversation between Strzok and Flynn that was not represented as an interview, in fact it was represented as a review of Security procedures. That was setup by McCabe and Strzok.

        So Mueller is using a seriously questionable – almost certainly entrapment “interview” by an agent that Mueller himself has removed for bias as the basis of charges against Flynn.
        And Mueller was aware of this when he forced the plea.
        That is or is very close to prosecutorial misconduct.

        The objective of an investigation is not to Manufacture crimes, in the specific instance of the special counsel it is not supposed to even be to find them. it is to investigate specified crimes, and if appropriate prosecute them.

        Andrew McCarthy who has been repeatedly asserting that the entire Mueller investigation is flawed because it does nto comply with the Special Counsel law, it unconstitutionaly blurrs a counter intelligence operation with a criminal prosecution. McCarthy has aparently thrown in the towel and said – what the hell. If we are going to completely ignore the rule of law – then lets do so in a thoroughly bipartisan manner and start an Obama/Iran Special Counsel investigation.

        I do not think that is likely, but it is possible, and the more egregious Mueller’s conduct gets the more likely it becomes. And it should not only terrify the left – but it should specifically terrify Mueller, because he would be a potential target.
        Essentially McCarthy is saying the best way to reign in a rogue special counsel may be to appoint another rogue special counsel with the power to go after the first.

        With respect to Thrashing the FBI – get past it. The FBI has had serious problems for a long long time. While a few people are coming forward to note that the fish rots from the head, and with respect to the current problems that is evident. The investigations of the past decade have mostly been botched from the top. At the same time. though you may not have been paying attention there have been myriads of stories of serious failures with respect to the FBI for some time, that have nothing specific to do with Trump or Clinton or those investigations.

        There is no doubt that the FBI has accomplished some things it deserves to be proud of.
        And there are many agents who really live up to the ideals we expect.

        But ignoring the long mess that Strzok is tied to, I can run a long list of serious FBI problems,
        including the major FBI crime lab fiasco, the sexual harrassment lawsuit, Several instances where the FBI entrapped, and possibly encouraged acts of terrorism. The U! obstruction,
        The Anthrax debacle, Ruby Ridge, Wacco, the attempted coverup of the Clinton/Lynch meeting,
        And that is just a few off the top of my head

        With respect to our intelligence services – again there are good people.
        But I am sorry, they have a many decades long reputation for failure.
        Why do you beleive the CIA on Russia when they were Wrong about NK,. Wrong about Iran, Wrong about Iraq, Wrong about ISIS, in fact it is pretty much impossible to thing of anything since the creation of the CIA that they have been right about.

        You portray this as a war with the KGB – we are not at war with Russia.
        What exactly is it you expect the KGB to do ? Steal the shiping dates for troop ships ?
        Oops we are not at war.

        The objective of the KGB is to steal our technology and to guess what we are up to politically.
        What else is it that you think the KGB is up to ? Creating a US 5th column ?

        I guess since Trump has pushed the neocon’s back into the Democratic party that you have become infecting with Dick Chenney disease.

        Yes, actually I beleive you could burn the entire DOJ, FBI, CIA, NSA, .. down to the ground, and rebuild at about 1/4 the size and task them to the things we as a nation actually need and be far better odd.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 5, 2017 7:58 pm

        The most fundimental problem with the Mueller investigation is that it is and always was a political investigation from the start.

        It has two goals:
        To protect the DOJ and FBI from the exposure of their conduct during the Obama administration – a goal they are failing miserably at.
        To damage Trump as much as possible

        I am not sure it is quite as partisan as you. I do not think it is so much Democrats vs. republicans. As it is ordinary people vs “their betters”.

        They are not out to get Trump because he is republican.
        But because he is their to tear down the elites.

        This is why as a whole despite the fact that Trump is president he doe not have nearly the control of any part of the administration that Obama did. Even the whitehouse is a dangerous place for Trump.

        Alot of this was setup by the election. Trump ran on and was elected to “drain the swamp”.
        And unlike traditional politicians I think that Washington elites believe that promise was serious.
        Trump has not made efforts to make nice with Washington.

        So Trump came to DC and it was crystal clear from day one, to most of the people in DC, that Trump is their enemy. Not because he was Republican.

      • December 6, 2017 10:10 am

        Roby, Michael Flynn is a retired 3-star general, who served 33 years in the military, a combat veteran with a specialty in counterterrorism, who was appointed by OBAMA as the Director of Defense Intelligence as well as the Chair of the Military Intelligence Board. Prior to his appointments, he had served as Director of Intelligence for the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

        You don’t consider Flynn to be from the “grey world of professionals?”

        Politics plays a role in the intelligence community, in the military, in every aspect of government:

        Was J.Edgar Hoover not political? How about Douglass MacArthur? David Petraeus, a 4 star general AND a CIA Director was forced to resign after having an affair and mishandling classified information.

        Being a professional does not mean that you cannot be a partisan. And, from everything I can see, Mueller is not only a partisan, but has been conducting a partisan investigation.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 12:00 pm

        Here is a pretty long “biography” of Mueller

        I found it surprising. Frankly disturbing. After reading it I was wondering how Mueller advanced at all.

        He has a very long history of “failing upward”. In other words he takes a job, botches it and then gets promoted to a higher position.

        This man never should have been a US attorney or FBI directory.

        I beleive elsewhere I noted a long but incomplete list of the FBI’s modern failures.
        Mueller is associated with nearly every one – as well as some I forgot.

        Mueller has botched numerous high profile investigations.
        In fact I do not think he actually has any successful high profile prosecutions.
        He loses in court, he loses on appeal, he botches the investigations he is part of.

        This is not the honorable and distinguished Prosecutor we keep hearing about.

        About the only positive thing that can be said for him is that he is not “partisan”.

        A better description appears to be
        Arrogant.
        Agressive
        Overbearing.
        Dictatorial
        Aloof
        incompetent
        unwilling to take responsibility
        Blames others.

        Anyway, I have offered an entirely different view of his “partisanship”.
        Which I think is being missed.

        This is NOT Republicans vs. Democrats.

        It is Trump vs. the deep state.
        It is Trump vs. the “swamp creatures”.

        Whether it is Rosenstein, Comey, Mueller or Strzok, the question is not whether they are Biased – democrat/republican. But whether they are upholding the constitution which vests the executive powers solely in the president – and the presidents expressed desire is to “drain the swamp”,
        or whether they view themselves as part of the resistance – the elites keeping the barbarians from the gates.

        One issue that comes up constantly is “independence” the independence of the DOJ, and of the FBI. Comey testified that he was championing and protecting the FBI’s independence.

        There is no doubt there is a long traditon of independence in both – particularly post FDR.

        But in fact constitutionally there is none. The entire power of the executive branch constitutionally rests with the president.
        If you in the executive branch and are at odds with the president – even when the president is wrong and his directions are unconstitutional, your choices are:
        Persuade the president to change direction.
        Resign.

        There is no third choice.

        Alternatives are only available to the courts – which are constitutionally independent, and congress.

        http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-pol-mueller-record-20171122-story.html

      • December 6, 2017 10:36 am

        Just this morning, this column appeared in National Review. Both you and Jay have linked articles by David French, who has often been highly critical of President Trump. Perhaps you’ll read this one, which is critical of the Mueller investigation. French has long been in favor of a non-partisan, transparent investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election. He does not appear to believe that Mueller’s investigation fits that description:

        “For a critical mass of the public to have confidence in Mueller’s investigation, it must be as transparent and accountable as humanly possible. A proper investigation into Russian interference in our election is vital to the health of our democracy. A biased and opaque probe, however, will do far more harm than good.”
        http://www.nationalreview.com/article/454361/peter-strzok-fbi-scandal-partisan-american-bureaucracy?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=NR%20Daily%20Monday%20through%20Friday%202017-12-05&utm_term=NR5PM%20Actives

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 12:29 pm

        I listened to a Trey Gowdy interview last night.

        I was very surprised. While Gowdy is partisan, he is also very sharp and a former prosecutor.

        He was blunt that democrats were stalling trying to keep this investigation open through the 2018 elections.

        He was very forceful with respect to the obstruction that the DOJ and FBI are engaging in.
        but made it clear – what he wants is the documents the House has requested – not scalps at DOJ and FBI or a protracted legal or constitutional battle.

        I thought he was fairly astute with respect to the Flynn plea.

        He pretty much said Flynn plead guilty to something he obviously did not do, in return for protection for himself and his son, and that he got an excellent deal.
        That there is no chance he is going to jail, that he is near useless to Mueller as a witness as a result of the plea.

        At the same time Gowdy took a strong stance AGAINST a 2nd special prosecutor.

        He expressed great confidence not only in Mueller, but that Mueller would be done soon.

        It has been noted that democrats have shifted from the Russia Collusion narrative to the obstruction of justice one.

        Because the collusion narative is dead.
        Project Veritas has released more video’s from WaPo with their top National Security reporter saying, there is nothing there on collusion.

        Obstruction of justice is a dead horse.

        Several excellent lawyers have stated that repeatedly – including Derschowitz, Turley and Trump’s own lawyer.

        They are being misrepresented in the press – as following Nixon’s assertion that “if the president does it, it is not illegal”.

        The actual state of the law is that the president can not obstruct justice so long as his actions are within his constitutional powers.

        That is NOT the same as the president can do whatever he pleases.

        Derschowitz noted that Bush I explicitly pardoned Weinberger to END a federal investigation.
        And no one tried to prosecute for obstruction.

        The president can fire Mueller, he can direct the DOJ that the investigation is over. He can pardon everyone, he can pardon himself, he can tall Comey not to prosecute Flynn – and the only consequence he can be subject to is impeachment.

        I am starting to get a completely different sense of things right now.
        Trump has actually been pretty restrained in my judgement regarding this entire investigation.
        While he has tweeted and ranted, he has not actually done anything.

        I am starting to think that the actual strategy is to let Mueller fizzle,

        Trump has had the power to fire Mueller or to reign him in. There are lots of things he has had the ability to do for a long time that he has chosen not to.

        But all of those things have a set of risks:

        1). They prolong this.
        2). They risk impeachment – which Trump would almost certainly survive, but would add atleast another year to this debacle and likely cost house and senate seats and possibly any re-election prospects.

        I am almost beinging to think that Mueller was given this because he has never successfully prosecuted a high profile case, and because he does nto have what it takes to prosecute this.

        Further I would note that Trump and his family and their lawyers are the one group that actually knows the truth of all of the allegations.

        If there is nothing to this – and as I have repeatedly stated I do not think it is even possible for their to be, their jeopardy in allowing this to go forward is purely avoiding getting trapped in a process crime – and protecting from that is Trump’s legal teams job.

        Doing any of the things that Trump is justified and has the power to do, prolong this.

        One of the things that Jay and Roby and the left should ponder is that when this dies,
        Trump’s approval skyrockets.
        But democrats and the left do not recover.

        This has always been a gigantic game of chicken. One side or the other is losing big.

        After the Mueller investigation closes Trump will have the political power and authority to clean house at DOJ and FBI and also the intelligence community

        Doing so now fuels the “obstruction of justice” nonsense.

        But if the Mueller investigation comes to an end without finding anything.
        Trump will be able to do as he pleases. He will “own” the FBI and DOJ and …..

      • Roby permalink
        December 6, 2017 10:36 am

        “Being a professional does not mean that you cannot be a partisan. And, from everything I can see, Mueller is not only a partisan, but has been conducting a partisan investigation.”

        But Priscilla, you have a lens, you yourself are partisan. How can you tell whether its partisan through your own lens?

        Perform a thought experiment, try to Really imagine that all of your partisan views just fell away, a bad dream, you wake up and they disappear. How different would everything seem?

        I posted a link to Maxim Vengerov teaching 4 young musicians. Partisan politics is a cesspool. Climb out of it to something far far far better. Enter the other end of the human spectrum, put down what you are doing with politics and immerse yourself in something sublime, godly. Its about an hour. Have a glass of wine and enter that sublime world for an hour and then ask yourself if you want to go back to world of partisan mud throwing.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 1:30 pm

        “But Priscilla, you have a lens, you yourself are partisan. How can you tell whether its partisan through your own lens?”

        I thought you were a scientist ? This is literally post-modernist crap.

        Perfect Objectivity is not possible. But objectivity is not binary either.
        It is actually possible to separate what is most probably true from what is most probably false.

        If that were not so science would be completely impossible.

        I would look arround. Some of us grasp that Trump is far from perfect, and yet not the devil incarnate. Bias comes in degrees and you drown in it.

        Take any issue being debated – for the sake of argument, take any legal theory that the left is offering to punish Trump. Are you prepared to apply the exact same standard to the Obama administration ?

        If Flynn’s calls to Kislyak are Logan act violations – then Obama’s meetings with Foriegn leaders during the transition were too.

        If Flynn’s inaccurate reporting to the FBI in a non-interview interview is a 18 U.S.C. 1001 violation, then aren’t Abedin and Mill’s outright lies in a scheduled interview with the same agent.

        Further, isn’t it extremely reasonable to conclude that a very senior FBI agent who applies very nearly the same fact pattern completely different for one person than another is in some serious way compromised and biased ? Particularly when that agent has expressed bias to others ?

        There are myriads of means and techniques of cancelling out biases, without them nothing would be knowable.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 1:38 pm

        One of Your core arguments – and a very common one from others on TNM is that in a conflict both sides are wrong and the truth to the extent it exists must reside in the middle.

        That should be absolutely total bunk and you should know it.

        There are so many flaws in that argument.
        Everything is not binary.

        You toss “partisan” arround as if by saying partisan you can dismiss everything completely.

        Many things are partisan, further partisan comes in many flavors.
        I have noted that I do not think the Mueller/Comey/Rosenstein/Strzok Bias/partisanship is democrat/republican it is more elitist public servant vs. the president elected to reign them in.

        Regardless, I can list myriad of “partisan issues”
        Rarely is either party right on one of those,
        but nearly always one party is more right than the other.
        i.e. the Truth is not in the middle but either close to one parties position or somewhere different from other parties.

        Sometimes the republicans are closer to the truth, sometimes it is democrats, sometimes it lies somewhere else.

        Regardless, we need not throw up our hands and say “partisan conflict” we can do nothing.

        Or worse as you do “partisan conflict lets go with the left.

      • Roby permalink
        December 6, 2017 12:17 pm

        One more thing. The mud. I can destroy the character of anyone if I look hard enough. The most fundamental political habit is “getting the dirt” on whoever we don’t like, whoever is doing something we don’t like. I am sure that absolutely true facts can be found and emphasized on even the most noble person or institution to paint an utterly true but completely skewed picture, such that their own mother should not love them.

        This is what we do all day long in political talk, its the basis of politics, digging for the facts that destroy a character and obsessing with them.

        What a dirty part of the soul, destruction of character, maligning of a life. OK, some people beg for it, that is the temptation. And they (whoever one’s adversary is) did it first.

        What was that little thing Christ said about the first stone?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 4:06 pm

        You seem to conflate two separate premises.

        The one is that there is dirt on everyone.

        The other that everyone can be destroyed by lies.

        I do not accept the first. I do not think that every – or even most people have behaved such that their behavior alone would disqualify them from public office.

        Further even of those of us who are less than perfect – few of us have flaws so large that they would disqualify them from public office.

        I am disturbed by Franken’s behavior. But my suspicion is that it is tame for politicians.
        Certainly it is not as bad as Moore’s or Clinton’s.
        I think that is an easy judgement all of us can make.

        At the same time I do not think the majority of males are routinely ugrabbing the buts of wmone they have no relationship with.
        In otherwords, While I think that Franken’s conduct is innoccuous by political standards, I think it is very rare by the standards of ordinary people.
        I certainly hope that is the case.

        Regardless, I do not think we must accept being governed by rapists, Peodophiles, and sexual harrassers

        I also think that we are entitled to be governed by people who are competent.

        But if we must be governed by the worst of us then we had better have some serious limits on government – beyond the will of the majority, because otherwise we are screwed.

    • Jay permalink
      December 5, 2017 11:29 am

      Roby, write it out in detail; I’m positive it’s publishable.
      (Do it!)

    • dhlii permalink
      December 5, 2017 7:19 pm

      While your story is interesting it is also self defeating.

      Did you commit any crimes ?
      If not then go away.

      You also fail to address the critical element.

      Though I do not honestly beleive Russia succeeded in persading large numbers of people of anything – except after the fact those on the left unable to beleive they lost because of who they are, decided it must have been russia.
      The left is great at scapegoating. Ask Nakoula Basseley Nakoula.

      But lets say that Russia somehow magically persuaded myriads of voters to switch from Clinton to Trump. So ? Where is the crime ?

      Was there a gun to the voters heads ? Were they black mailed ?

      To win this you not only have to persuade alot of voters they made the wrong choice, but they did so because they were deceived by Russia.

      It is just not going to happen. Given that the left can not accept that they lost because of who they are, why do you expect Trump voters to believe they were stupid ?

      Maybe I am not being clear, you need to persuade people that they are as stupid as you think they are. Do you understand how difficutl that is ?

      Almost the only people you are ever going to convince are people who DID NOT vote for Trump.

      They are easy – other people were stupid.

      While you start your Russia Collusion nonsense with the likely support of probably nearly 100% of Clinton voters, you have structured your meme such that any Trump voter that buys your story has to accept that they were duped.

      • Roby permalink
        December 6, 2017 8:23 am

        “Did you commit any crimes ?
        If not then go away.”

        You go away! (yeah right).

        Seriously, where do you get the balls?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 10:47 am

        Again everything is about you, except when it is about me.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 5, 2017 7:31 pm

      No predicting Mueller is not that hard.

      When you eliminate the impossible whatever is left however unlikely is the truth.

      A large portion of the Trump/Russia collusion story is either completely impossible, or very nearly so.

      The Flynn indictment on the one hand gets Mueller inside the inner circle of Team Trump,
      But at the same time it comes very close to taking anything pre election off the table.

      Mueller’s relatively transparent next step is going after Kushner and hoping to catch him in a lie about Trump Transition actions involving Russia.
      That is going to be very hard.
      Worse still, it is highly unlikely Meuller can flip Kushner.
      Numerous people have noted that Trump’s use of family rather than cutouts puts the family at risk. But they fail to note that works both ways. Family does not easily turn on family, and particularly when you have the implicit promise of a presidential pardon.

      There are only so many choices left.

      I would further note that thus far Mueller has been very predictable.
      He has been not thus far bought any of the constitutionally idiotic nonsense of the left – like the Trump statements to Comey being obstruction.
      He has stuck to process crimes. He has hit the expected targets in much the expected way in the expected order.

      I would also note that none of his actions todate expose a conspiracy.
      They are each isolated from each other an unconnected.

      Flynn seems to have gotten a sweethart deal which suggests that Mueller’s had was very weak.
      That Mueller understood that the other stories about Flynn were either unprosecutable or not illegal. Regardless, they are now off the table.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 7, 2017 3:19 pm

      More evidence of Bias at FBI DOJ.

      Is directing FBI agents to not consider a terrorist attack a terrorist attack not “obstruction of justice” by the lefts ridiculously broad definition ?

      Pick a standard – any standard. Define is clearly and apply it evenly to ALL.
      Republican’s democrats. Trump, Clinton.

  61. Jay permalink
    December 5, 2017 10:41 am

    Lies Are Truth – the new Republican Mantra

    (70% of Alabama Republicans believe the charges against Moore are fabricated)

    http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/roy-moore-now-claims-he-knows-none-of-his-accusers-contradicting-his-earlier-defenses/article/2642549

    • dhlii permalink
      December 5, 2017 8:47 pm

      I beleive it is “Truth is lies”.

      I am not a republican.
      I am not an alabama republican.
      I think the fact that they are going to elect Moore is disturbing.

      At the same time the left brought this on – that does not excuse the right.
      But when one side makes up the rules as they go along all the time,
      But expects the other to always play square.
      Eventually the other says F#$k it

      Polls show that we beleive the media is accurate about 25% of the time.

      While I think it is the media is better than that, and there is a difference between distorted which they do constantly and flat out wrong which is rare,
      Still it does not surprise me that Alabama republicans do not beleive the washington post.

      Those on the left do not beleive James OKeeffe pretty much ever, even when he provides the raw video.

      Separately atleast one of the Moore accusations has hit serious problems.
      I think the accusation is true. But I think that it was embelished after the fact and the accuser got caught.

      Regardless, discredit part of one, and people doubt them all.

      Finally – Bill Clinton was elected President with a number of allegations of Sexual Harrasment.
      Donald Trump was elected after the Access Hollywood tape.
      Hillary won her party’s nomination after vile treatment of the women who accused Bill.

      What we are seeing is the destruction of moral standards on the right.
      Which makes them the same now as the left.

      I would have prefered the opposite outcome, but this does not surprise me.

      I would also suggest you think about what is going on in Washington.
      Whether Trump survives or not, this is far from over.
      If somehow Trump is impeached resigns or loses in 2020.

      Those who elected him – and more will be back.
      Only next time, they are playing by YOUR rules.

      Your definition of obstruction of justice, your definitions of lies, your definitions of what is acceptable and what is not.

      WE have seen this again and again.

      I support the Fillibuster. But it is gone, and the last vestiges will die soon enough.
      Both sides threatened, but the left killed it.

    • December 5, 2017 12:41 pm

      Jay yes money laundering is a prosecutable offense. But does it not make your afraid of government where we have laws and rules of investigation that the FBI, SBI’s and police have to follow, but SP’s do not.. A special investigator charged with ONE ISSUE (Russian collusion) and one issue only can run rough shod throughout the friends, family and life of the individual they are charged to investigate for that ONE ISSUE and investigate anything in their lives back for years until they find something they did illegally?

      This crap has to end!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Investigate the collusion and if there is no collusion, stop trying to justify your existence by finding something and ruining lives.

      Maybe its time for a special investigator to begin looking into the real dealings of the Clinton Foundation. Then they could go back in Clintons past and investigate White Water and all the illegal trading she did with cattle and other activities before being FLOTUS.

      • Jay permalink
        December 5, 2017 5:43 pm

        Fine. Investigate the Clintons, once again.
        But let’s concentrate on the clear and present danger first, of the buffoons NOW in Office .

      • December 5, 2017 7:14 pm

        GOOD GOD MAN!!!!

        This is the kind of thinking that leads to coups and dictators! I can not believe you are fine with some one without any leash running all over people with subpoena power.

        so please tell us what your red line is in investigating issues that come up.This is a man with limitless resources that can investigate anything that remotely touches the election. He can threaten families with criminal action if they forgot to answer a question on a form. He can bankrupt an individual through endless required autorney fees. And when the intelligence agencies are political, how can we insure entrapment has not occurred?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 2:26 am

        The “clear and present danger” are the efforts to reverse an election.

        The McCarthy SC proposal is not a Clinton investigation. That is actually its genius.
        He deliberately chose the Iran/Nuke deal.
        That makes it the same bizzare unconstitutional counter intelligence criminal concoction that Mueller has been given.
        Further while the Clinton’s and the U1 deal are atleast tangential targets, it targets a significant portion of the Obama administration – including tangentially Mueller himself.

        And there is already far more actual evidence.

        Finally, we prosecute crimes because they are crimes. Not because some victims are more or less important than others, or because some bad actors are more or less important than others.

        Justice is supposed to be blind. It is not supposed to care about the status of the victim, the perpetrator or someones ideas of which things are more important.

        The rule of law – not man.

        Means we follow the law, without layering in personal values.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 1:52 am

        Money laundering is only a crime, if the money is the proceeds of a crime.

        Mueller thoroughly botched this with respect to Manafort.
        And he is near certainly going to lose – just as Preet Behar, did on a relatively similar over broadening of financial crimes laws a couple of years ago.

        And in the unlikely event he does not, Well then we just burn down the entire left because they are up to their asses in “money laundering” – atleast defined this way.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 6, 2017 1:45 am

      This crap was addressed with respect to Manafort.

      Money laundering requires that the money that is laundered is there profits from a crime.

      The indictments against Manafort should have been for tax evasion, you can not launder legally earned money.

      But the IRS refused to cooperate with Mueller – among other reasons because Manafort settled with the IRS in 2014.

      This is more left wing bunk attempting to criminalize using money and a way that lefties do not like – which is pretty much any way.

      AND I would further note you do not want to win on “money laundering” are somebody is going to burn the DNC, the Podesta Group, the Clinton foundation to the ground and jail everyone close to them – just for a start.

      What does it take for you to grasp that when you expand the law nearly infinitely, it will ensnare you too ?

    • dhlii permalink
      December 6, 2017 7:07 pm

      “There you go again”

      Fake news. There is no subpeona of Trump records, just as Trump has said.

      There may or may not be a subpeona of Deutche Bank, all we have is an assertion of a reporter that a source told them there was.

      Regadless, according to the corrected story – Not Trump

  62. Jay permalink
    December 5, 2017 11:46 am

    Another male getting screwed by PC Harassment Witch Hunt Fever?

  63. December 5, 2017 12:43 pm

    OK in the line of prostitution and Libertarian views on individual behaviors.

    Who here thinks states should be allowed to oversee sports betting and not be a federal offense in all but two states? (SCOTUS has that before them now)

    • Anonymous permalink
      December 5, 2017 7:07 pm

      I agree with you Ron – Mike Hatcher

    • dhlii permalink
      December 6, 2017 1:55 am

      I do not think gambling should be illegal anyway.
      It should not be a federal crime,
      it should not be a state crime
      and it should not have any special oversight.

      I do think that states should be barred from running lotteries or other forms of gambling.
      It is not their job and they are abysmal at it, and most state lotteries are ponzi schemes that are ultimately going to have to be bailed out by tax payers,
      Worse they tend to be corrupt.

      • December 6, 2017 12:20 pm

        Well once again, your libertarianism is further libertarian than mine. We already have seen what happens with gambling when the private sector sets the rules. Nevada had to set rules after the mafia ran it in their state. And large cities saw what happened when the private sector controlled the numbers game.

        I support states deciding if gambling within their borders should be legal ( states rights). I think the assholes in Washington DC need to stay out of business conducted within the states. And when I define business, I define that as a transaction that takes place within the borders of that state. As for sports betting, if that is online, I define the transaction occurring wherever I am located at the time I key in the transaction and place the bet.

        But I do not trust the private sector because some of the same people conducting business in a forcefull manner are some of the same people that have money and connections to get elected to congress or the presidency. Or that happens in reverse. So I support state oversight of written regulations overseeing gambling in their state. It might not be 100%, but I think it cleans up criminal activity a lot.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 4:15 pm

        No Nevada did not have to set the rules.

        There are already laws against violence,

        In the real world though – illegal gambling is actually more honest than government gambling.

        Do you think anyone would bet with the mafia if they did not pay off ?

        Further illegal gambling arrises when you bar legal gambling.

        When you make something illegal – you do not make the demand go away, and you deprive those who provide the service of recourse to government to enforce agreements – which means they must enforce them through violence.

        Why should gambling ever be illegal ? it is just another form of free exchange.

        All that should be illegal is the use of violence.

        The assholes in government need to stay out of business.

        My state and local reps are at best marginally better than the federal ones.

        You say “forceful” manner – the use of force in business is and should be ilegal.

        https://www.theguardian.com/news/2017/dec/05/portugals-radical-drugs-policy-is-working-why-hasnt-the-world-copied-it?CMP=share_btn_tw

  64. December 5, 2017 4:27 pm

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-deutsche-bank/trump-lawyer-denies-deutsche-bank-got-subpoena-on-trump-accounts-idUSKBN1DZ0XN

    So it appears there could be another “Fake News” report based on some just released news. One person reports ” anonymously” that Trumps records were subpeoned. No one has verified this.

    But this sure as hell should convince ANY sucessful business person from seeking the office of president. So Trump borrows money from a German bank. Like all banks and lending institutions, that bak MIGHT HAVE sold thosemloans to smaller vanks or investment brokers. Those individuals MAY be located in Russia. So Trump HAS TO BE guilty od collusion sine the Russians have loans his companies need to repay.

    SOMEONE HAS TO BE A COMPLETE IDIOT TO WANT TO BE PRESIDENT GIVEN THE TOXIC ENVIRONMENT IN POLITICS TODAY¡!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Roby permalink
      December 5, 2017 4:46 pm

      Yep, that is one part of the explanation of how we got trump, not so coincidentally, a complete idiot.

      Its been this way a long loooong time. I read the history of England once. Most kings lived about as long in office as the attention span of a millennial. Except leaders did not get subpoenaed they got killed. Call it the “leader delusion”, a blind spot of alpha males. “I’m going to be leader! It will be great!”

    • Jay permalink
      December 5, 2017 5:50 pm

      So – the unverification is unverified as well, except from Suckitoff (did I spell his name wrong, sorry) whose words in the past have been proved unreliable.

      Just have to wait and see what develops, or not.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 2:32 am

        There have been myriads of past stories of subpeona’s of Trump records.

        It is possible that those rumors are/were true.
        But we have ZERO evidence of that.

        At the same time we do know – and even Comey testified that most of what is reported in the news regarding the Trump investigation is fiction.

        One of the things we are learning is that Fussion GPS is heavily involved in feeding the media.

        They have been feeding the news fake stories.
        Even when it appears that something is going to come out that will help Trump or harm Clinton the DNC or them the leak the story ahead to a friendly reporter to get it out with favorable spin.

        They apparently leaked the story of their own ties to the DNC and Elias – because an NYT reporter had the story and was closing in on verification, and so they leaked it to a WaPo reporter to get a favorable spin.
        They also leaked information on who was paying them, in the hope of forestalling a House Subpeona of their bank records.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 6, 2017 2:14 am

      Maybe this is true, maybe it is not.

      I would note that the majority of anti-Trump reporting has either been outright false or seriously distorted.

      Conversely most of the Trump favorable reporting has proven to be true.

      The spin on all of this is incredible.

      As an example (of Spin not error). We have know that Flynn was a target half of forever.
      We have known that Flynn misrepresented his calls to Kislyak in some small ways for almost a year.
      We have known that Flynn was either being indicted or pleading for months.
      We have known it was linkely Flynn was pleading for more than a month.

      So the Plea occurs – we have been promised Logan Act Violations.
      Kidnappings, Payoffs, all kinds of malfeasance on the part of Flynn,

      We get a plea to a tiny variation on something we have known for nearly a year.

      Flynn presuming he “cooperates” is off the hook for everything else, as well as likely his son.
      That is how plea deals work.

      While Mueller can threaten – Cooperate, is defined by the court not Mueller, and in this case would mean to provide testimony specifically related to the events described in the information part of the pleading. In this case that means Flynn must tell Mueller everything there is to tell about his after the election communications with Kislyak and all direction he received from the Trump team regarding that.

      Flynn can of course talk more about anything he wants.
      But as plea deals go this is a sweetheart deal.

      Remember there is no penalty to either Flynn or Mueller for including far more in the information.
      Flynn is immune from further prosecution based on the deal he and his lawyers worked out – not what is in the information. Normally prosecutors stuff everything and the kitchen sink into the information. Because the big use of a plea deal is to prosecute a conspiracy, and the information for the plea deal is the first best chance the prosecutor gets to lay out the conspiracy.

      There are two risks to Trump at the moment:
      One that Kushner “misstated” something to the FBI or in something sworn related to the Kislyak calls.
      Two that Mueller is going to be so stupid as to actually try to prosecute the Logan act.

      With respect to 1. As others have noted – Mueller has almost zero leverage on Kushner.
      Flynn could be bled to financial ruin protecting himself and his son.
      Kushner can not.

      Based on what I am reading now, there is not a chance in hell Flynn could have been convicted of “lying to the FBI”.

      Thus far Mueller has spent $5M. That is chicken feed to the Trumps.

      It is highly unlikely Mueller can “flip” family, and regardless, there is still ZERO evidence of what Mueller was tasked to investigate.

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 9:46 am

        “I would note that the majority of anti-Trump reporting has either been outright false or seriously distorted.”

        Bull crap.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 11:13 am

        In Mr. Comey’s public testimony to congress he testified that nearly all of what he read in the news about this was false.

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 9:48 am

        “Based on what I am reading now, there is not a chance in hell Flynn could have been convicted of “lying to the FBI”.”

        Horse crap

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 11:26 am

        Rep. Gowdy, a former prosecutor and a strong defender of Mueller stated that the only basis for the claim that Flynn lied is that he plead guilty. Because the facts and the information do not support that.

        He further noted that was surprising because the plea made Flynn useless as a witness against Trump.

        I would further note that every day we learn more. Now it turns out that Strzok conducted the FBI interviews of Mill and Abedin – in which they quite obviously lied about their knowledge and actions regarding Clinton’s private email server.

        There is a fundimental difference though – Mill and Abedin were formally interviewed, the interview was scheduled in advance, and they were able to prepare and knew what to prepare for.

        Flynn has about an hour notice that the FBI was stopping by, further the purpose of that visit was misrepresented – that he was being briefed by the FBI not questioned by them.
        Flynn may not have know until after the fact that he was actually being questioned as part of an investigation

        There are a number of elements required for ALL false statements crimes – you can look them up.
        Several of those are not me.

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 9:52 am

        “Flynn is immune from further prosecution based on the deal he and his lawyers worked out – not what is in the information. ”

        Frog fart.
        Read the full plea.
        It stipulates additional prosecution open.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 11:37 am

        Cut and pasted from the very first page of the plea agreement

        “3. Additional Charges

        In consideration of your client’s guilty plea to the above offense, your client will not be
        further prosecuted criminally by this Office ”

        This is pretty standard. Flynn is not subject to further charges unless he violates the terms of the agreement.

        Those terms are that he fully cooperates with the SC with respect to the “information” contained in the plea. Essentially it means that Flynn must provide Mueller everything he knows about his post election contacts with Kislyak – which would include information regarding who directed him and how did they direct him.

        The thinness of the “information” has been noted by numerous lawyers and prosecutors.
        It is typical for a prosecuter to paint the broadest possible “conspiracy” in the information,
        because even though the plea protects the peading party from prosecutions that information accomplishes two things – it binds the pleader to cooperate with regard to that information, and it is the first actual evidence, and often the only evidence that a prosecutor may get that an actual conspiracy exists.

        Flynn not only get a sweet hart deal, but contra many reports his required cooperation is very limited.

        This is probably why Trump has been quite favorable to Flynn since the Plea.

        The only danger to Trump this plea poses is if the people Flynn talked to regarding the communications with Kislyak have testified falsely regarding that communication.

  65. Jay permalink
    December 5, 2017 6:02 pm

    More Scum Rises To The Surface

    https://apnews.com/e4a63034bc344765b90adc27d75b6893

    • December 6, 2017 12:09 am

      I am sure glad i do not live in Alabama, I hate to say this, but if someone put a gun to my head and I had to vote, I would have a hard time making that decision. In this article it says :
      “Another Republican, Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, sent a $100 check to Moore’s Democratic opponent, Doug Jones on Tuesday. He tweeted a picture of the check and the words, “Country over party.”

      How can someone who is a Republican and supporter of Republican positions actually say the country will be better off with the liberal from Alabama. His voting for liberal progressive legislation can lead this country into more socialist type entitlement programs, more illegal immigration, more government regulation and more involvement of government in ones lives for years and years into the future.

      On the other hand, one of the most despicable individuals is running to prevent everything that the liberal progressive candidate supports. He will be a vote to stop years of creeping socialism in the united states, he will support continued crack downs on illegal immigrants in the country, he will support reduced regulation and reduced involvement of government in peoples lives.

      So the choice comes down to a possible takeover of the senate by Shumer in 2018 and his progressive agenda that will harm the country for years (much like all the Obama crap) or the seating of a former sexual predator with extreme social values that support infringing on rights of selected minority groups.

      I guess I would have two choices. Close my eyes and blindly choose one of them to avoid being shot, or refusing to vote and being shot. Given the choices, I suspect the second alternative would be best. Both alternatives turn my stomach, but for different reasons.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 3:00 am

        Ron Bishop for Senator!!!!

        http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2017/09/alabama_libertarian_announces.html

      • December 6, 2017 12:31 pm

        Ok that would solve my problem with a gun to my head and being forced to vote. Thanks for saving me😀!!!

        But why didnt the Libertarians make sure they got someone on the ballot before needing a late write in. If you want something bad enough, you can just about accomplish anything Trump shows this to be true. They coukd get 3% signitures needed if they work hard enough.

        Where there ‘s a will there’s a way.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 4:49 pm

        It is difficult to get on the ballot in most of the country – that is one of the reasons why the Libertarian party is the only party beyond democrats and republican with 50 state presidential ballot access.

        But much the same amount of work needs done for each office.

        Further Alabama is not a libertarain stonghold.

        In my state, most offices – down to the local ones, have libertarain candidates when there is a national election and many on off years.

        And on rare occasions libertarains actually get elected.
        3% is ALOT of signatures.

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 9:42 am

        “How can someone who is a Republican and supporter of Republican positions actually say the country will be better off with the liberal from Alabama.”

        The fact you’re having trouble understanding that is troublesome.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 10:56 am

        Was the4 nation better off with Bill Clinton – a rapist and serial sexual assaulter as president ?

        Sorry, Jay, but the question as to what is better for Alabama and the country is a legitimate one and an open one. I have not answered it the same as Ron, but I have no problems with his position.

        As in 2016 – we do not always get the choices we want and we have to chose between bad alternatives.

      • December 6, 2017 12:48 pm

        “The fact you’re having trouble understanding that is troublesome. ”
        Jay, That is because you support the progressive agenda like Obamacare, excessive regulations, high taxes leading to companies relocating to Ireland and other EU countries with 1\2 the taxes that Jones supports and I don’t.

        Moore is temporary. Whatever the voters decide. Legislation is permanent. Once programs are put into place, they rarely get terminated.

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 2:22 pm

        “Jay, That is because you support the progressive agenda like Obamacare, excessive regulations, high taxes leading to companies relocating to Ireland and other EU countries with 1\2 the taxes that Jones supports and I don’t.”

        Ron, I don’t catagorically support any of the above.
        I’m a moderate, and take middle ground stances when possible.

        For example, I was against the implementation of Obamacare.

        I predicted it would be disruptive in the ways it turned out to be disruptive.
        BUT I was in favor of the concert of striving for inclusive health insurance for everyone. What the dickhead Republicans are doing to dismantle it is worse than the current version.

        You however, appear to be mired in the same partisan propagandistic slogans we’ve heard from the right for decades.

        I don’t have time to discuss this now.
        The dangerous So Cal fires are approaching the city where my daughter lives, and I may have to help evacuate her, if it gets much closer.

      • Ron P permalink
        December 6, 2017 3:31 pm

        Jay, prayers for your daughter. Many years ago I lived east of LA and witnessed wildfires in the mountains from LA to San Bernadino. But I never remember fires coming down the hills into neighborhoods and buring down so many residential areas.

        After your daughter is safe and settled after the fires, how about a debate on issues to see where we both support as right now with your constant reposting of Trump crap and support of unfettered independent investagator powers, I see you as a Warren/Sanders/Pelosi//Shumer democrat and you see me as a Bannon/Cruz Republican. I doubt either of us are those things. But I bet when we find out, you will be much, much more trusting of government than I am.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 5:00 pm

        Predicting obamacare would fail is a no brainer.

        Eliminating PPACA is quite obviously not worse than what we have.

        We had no PPACA before.
        There was no health outcome differences.
        There was less cost.

        Most people call that better.

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 6, 2017 2:29 pm

        I am a registered Republican, have never contributed to any political candidate, and I just sent $50 to Doug Jones. Flake gave me the idea.

      • December 6, 2017 3:41 pm

        Why not the libertarian that supports many more positions republicans support than the liberal democrat. That would support someone taking votes from Moore and have the same effect of electing Jones, while providing resources to candidates who support many positions moderates support. (Many more than the extremes in bothnparties like those running in Alabama)

      • Roby permalink
        December 6, 2017 5:04 pm

        Jay, that is serious stuff. I hope you your daughter comes through safely. I wish everyone there will come through safely.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 6, 2017 12:34 pm

      Jay, in case you run out of excrement appellations: weasel turd.

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 2:06 pm

        🤗

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 4:58 pm

        More perjorative terms will certainly improve the dialog.

      • dduck12 permalink
        December 6, 2017 7:10 pm

        Ron, I don’t trust libertarians (especially the extreme one here on TNM) and their support of many of the Reps positions may not suit me as I am pro choice, anti gun, like Nixon, pro environment, etc.
        That don’t make me a Dem, even though living in NYC is like being in a liberal bubble. I still abhor the cradle to grave Mom state and snowflakes and Dems hypocrisy.
        I just want to start my campaign against Moore, lemming-like Reps, and the very dangerous Bannon.

      • December 6, 2017 11:07 pm

        dduck, So I may agree with you on Libertarianism. I only associate with this party as the other two spend too much time in peoples personal lives and money.

        So call me a constitutionalist.
        Freedom of speech. No one should be banned from speaking at any site that accepts or is funded by federal funds. (Most all universities accept some forms of federal funds.
        Guns. No legislation controlling the guns. Change the constitution if there is a need to control guns.
        Abortion. That is a privacy issue. I am not pro life or pro choice. I am pro privacy. That is a choice only the woman can make.
        Environment. I support being secure in ones home. Overreach by federal agencies when someone decides a puddle is wetland is unacceptable.

        And there are other issues. Like I have said many times, those leaning left are much more trusting of government than I am. I believe if you crack into the constitution through legislation, the barn door will fly open to further infringement on constitutional rights (ie, executive orders that now end up regulations).

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:08 am

        dduck;

        Though all libertarians are not identical – just as all conservatives and progressives are not either,

        And you are free to trust who ever you please.

        An important element of trust is consistency, and predictability.

        I may not share the same values as you,
        But you can predict my values and positions from my principles, quite accurately – and if you can not, then your skills at logic and reason are poor, because I am highly predictable.
        As are nearly all libertarians – even if we are not identical.

        Disagreeing on positions is not the same as untrustworthy.

        Libertarains are split on abortion – just as the country is and for much the same reasons.
        Some libertarians are pro-choice some are pro-life.
        That strongly depends on whether they beleive that a fetus is human.

        Most libertarians oppose gun control – it is a restriction on liberty, and another reflection of the stupidity of the left that people (not circumstances or widgets) are responsible for their own choices. With freedom comes responsibility. The left denies both.

        The 19th century precursors of libertarianism – Thoreau, Emerson, … are also the earliest “environmentalists”.

        What distinguishes libertarians from the left on the environment is we are not nuts.
        We have generally not bought malthusian end of the world fallacies.
        We understand that the world improves because people – not governments choose to improve the world, and that all improvement is inextricably linked to improved standard of living.
        You do not get a better environment from more laws.
        You get it from more wealth.
        I know those on the left can not grasp that, but the data is near absolute.

        Separately just like everyone else we do not always have the choices we want.

        Libertarians tend to break republican about 60/40 – why ? Because republicans are generally the lessor evil. None of us are happy about voting republican when we do, or voting democrat when we do that. Most of us do not vote libertarain – or libertarains would be in the televised debates.

        There is a libertarian party, and those in it are libertarains, but most libertarians are not part in the party.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:19 am

        Moore has absolutely no redeeming value.
        I am as Irrate as anyone that he will likely get elected.
        Do not confuse predicting that with supporting it.

        Bannon, Trump, long list of other republicans – are right on some things and wrong on others.
        Same with democrats.

        Frankly I was very disturbed because Warren campaigned against the ExIm bank,
        but when the freedom caucus came close to killing it Warren worked with other democrats and republicans to save it.

        That is my idea of “untrustworthy” – you can not count on democrats to do what they say – whether you agree with it or not.

        In the recent Tax fight – democrats made a big deal about the republicans being the party of the rich. But look at the actual demographics – it is the democrats that are overwhelmingly the party of the rich. Further this tax cut is heavily skewed to the middle class.
        While I will personally appreciate the cut.
        Economically that is useless.

        Anyway I disagree with Bannon on most things – but not everything.
        As a result of his departure from the whitehouse – we are still in afghanistan and will be for alot longer.

        Are you capable of supporting someone you do not like on those few issues where you agree ?

        I am.

        We get a constant anti-Trump tirade as if we are also stupid and do not know Trumps faults, or as if you are ever going to sell the nonsense that Trump is wrong on absolutely everything – because “argh!! Trump!!!”.

        He is not quite as despicable a person as Bill Clinton,
        Thus far he is proving to be a slightly better president.

        That is not a rigning endorsement.
        But I am not sure the country could survive another nice person, but lousy president.
        Though that certainly was not a possibility in 2016.

  66. December 5, 2017 11:51 pm

    OK republicans had a cow when Conyers was accused of sexual misconduct, Pelosi poo pooed the issue and they called for his resignation almost immediately when they found he paid $27,000 in taxpayer money to settle the claim. About the same time Farenthold, a republican member was outed for sexual misconduct and he had paid $84,000 in hush money, but the same call from leadership for his resignation was not called for.

    So do these dip shi%$ in congress really think Americans are that stupid to not notice the difference. Americans may not give a damn what congressional members are doing, but how about being fair in who we ask to resign.

    Democrats didnt care one hoot about Clinton. Republicans could care less about Trump. The GOP at the time went bananas and now the Donkeys are going bananas about Trump.

    Its about time they just come out and say “we dont care”

  67. Jay permalink
    December 6, 2017 9:56 am

  68. Jay permalink
    December 6, 2017 11:06 am

    “At least 12 Trump associates had contacts with Russians during the campaign or transition. There were at least 19 face-to-face interactions with Russians or Kremlin-linked figures. There were at least 51 communications — meetings, phone calls, email exchanges and more.”

    “If the Trumpites and the Putinites weren’t communicating about how to subvert Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s campaign, what were they talking about? Their favorite brands of vodka? And if there was an innocent explanation for all of these contacts, why is it that everyone in the Trump campaign, from the president on down, has lied and lied and lied about them?”

    Maybe they’re natural born liars…
    GOP: LIES ARE TRUTH

    http://foreignpolicy.com/2017/12/05/donald-trump-is-guilty/

    • dhlii permalink
      December 6, 2017 3:32 pm

      If you read your article – its sources is another media outlet at some other time.
      In this case CNN some time ago.

      As noted Comey has already said that little to nothing in the media at the time he testified was correct.

      My guess is that FP is echoing CNN that is echoing the Steele dossier.
      In otherwords Crap several layers removed.

      Thus far prior to the election we have no contact between the Trump Campaign and the actual russian government – except for the fact that Sessions and Kislyak aparently attended a couple of public events together.

      It is possible if we knew absolutely everything about absolutely everybody that we would have a few more of the same thing. Flynn likely attended some public function that was also attended by someone from Russia.

      Cater page has denied under oath just about everything in the Steele Dossier concerning him.
      Quite some time ago.
      If he had lied under oath Mueller would have eaten him alive.
      Mueller is forcing plea deals for the weakest of misrepresentation, that compellingly proves that anything stronger is unlikely.
      Papadoulis plead for inaccurately reporting the timing of a meeting with a “fake” russian.
      Papadoulis never met any real russians.

      Natlalia increasingly looks like a Fusion GPS “dirty trick” She met with Simpson immediately before and after the Trump Jr. meeting. She gave the Trump’s dirt on a donor to the Clinton campaign – which is politically useless.

      Page had far fewer meetings that reported, and they were all business meetings, with people who are NOT part of the russian government.

      If we are going to count any countact with anyone who is a russian business person as campaign collusion then the Clinton campaign goes to Hell.

      Remember that stuff about using the same standards to evaluate both parties ?

      If you put everything we can prove about Trump and Russia on one side of a scale and everything we can prove about Clinton and Russa on the other, the Clinton side drops to the floor.

      The answer to your hypothetical is “they were not talking” PERIOD.

      But lets assume the hypothetical. Trump has business ventures in Russia – as has been noted HERE, Trump was contemplating a Trump Tower in Russia. That project did nto get very far and died in early 2016, but most certainly it involved legitimate business communications with Russia.

      Separately the Miss Universe Pagent was held in Moscow in 2013 and Trump was incredibly deeply involved in that. Do you think that involved no contact with anyone with a Russian Surname ?

      Further it is also known that Some of Trump’s business loands and investments are in russia.
      There is a great deal of reasons for Trump to have contact with Russia, in fact there is even reasons for Trump to have had contact with the actual Russian government.

      If Trump had actually been in a conspiracy with Russia it would have been Trivial to concoct a legitimate visible reason for Trump to communicate – even visit Russia, as a Front for your hypothetical activities.

      But there was no front and there was not actual contact.

      All that we have is two separate attempts to pedal this fake dirt on Clinton.

      Further both were late in the campaign – long after the DNC leak.

      Why is it that Natalia is meeting Trump Jr. to give them fake dirt, that Trump Jr. has high hopes for AFTER Russia has purportedly done its worst deeds – when if there was a conspiracy there already have been high level communications and secure channels.

      Why is Trump Jr. talking to Natalia, when Trump Sr. could more easily have contacted Vlad directly ?

      But god forbid you should expect anything to make sense.

      Also do you really believe that Trump went to enormous efforts to conspire with Putin to place 6500 in facebook adds ?

      Trump could have dumped a couple of million on Social media without batting an eye.

      Even if he wanted to hide it, it would have been far simpler for Trump to use fake accounts created in the US to do hat you think Putin did – and BTW badly.

      Like the idiotic dirt on Clinton that no american would take seriously the Russia Social Media Presence rather than sophisticated was retarded.

      So now you are arguing that yokels had there vote changed by pictures of potatoes that looked like Clinton ?

      I have no idea what you think “subvert hillary clintons campaign means”

      But we KNOW that Clinton subverted Sanders Campaign.

      And we KNOW that Clinton and the FBI worked with Russia to attempt to subvert Trump’s campaign, and that after the election they worked together to subvert the legitimacy of the election.

      It was noted more recently that the Steele Dossier was almost unreported until after the election. Most of the media would not touch it, there were few references to it and few of the stories in it prior to the election.

      The Steele Dossier finally made the news when James Comey breifed Trump on it.

      That was actually a political dirty trick. By briefing Trump Comey made it possible for the press to report on it and there suddenly was a flurry of stories.

      Anyway, ignoring all the above, if all this stuff you claim really happened,
      How about NAMES and DATES ?

      Myriads of Trump surogates have actually testified or been interviewed by the FBI or both.
      If they have lied – that would have been easy to prove.
      They would be pleading right now or already in jail, or at the very least indicted.

      Further paralell to Mueller – most of this has gone to both the House and Senate committees – which leak like a seive.

      Within a few Days we know everyone Strzok interviewed in the past 2 years.
      Do you think that dozens of meetings with Russia have been that well hidden from all of us ?

      You are quite litterally peddling “fake news”

  69. Roby permalink
    December 6, 2017 12:07 pm

    I got off on a musical tangent here, glad I did. Posted the Vengerov Master class link with all of its captured joy. Glad I did.

    Guys, excuse me if I am about to get preachy, but commenting on politics (following politics in excruciating detail) is like playing computer games. Its an addiction. I am sure that it ties into exactly the same areas of the brain and the same neural patterns that playing a computer game does. Its an addiction.

    We have so many other possibilities. We are all people with spare time on our hands trying to find something to do with our mind to keep life interesting.

    Words I would use to describe the emotions that politics engages:

    Envy
    Resentment
    Outrage
    Fear
    Greed
    Bitterness
    Anger
    Revenge
    Frustration

    Why, oh why, do we do it?

    There are real turn ons in life, family, friends, music, building something, making something, cooking, travel, helping someone, reading a good book, going fishing, walking in the woods. Once can visit a nursing home, volunteer at the local animal shelter, volunteer in many ways….

    Those things capture us in a different way than the negative addictive things that feed of our anger and fear.

    We have choice. Why is it less engaging to choose the positive things?

    I would suggest to everyone here to listen to some kind of music that they love through a great stereo once a day, but that is just me. Ron might build something, Dave might read a philosophy book, everyone has something better more soul satisfying available to them than climbing down into the mud pit of politics.

    Would anyone lying on their deathbed regret that they did not spend more time immersed in politics?

    Why is it so hard to tame the brain?

    • dhlii permalink
      December 6, 2017 3:53 pm

      We could address this by either:

      ignoring politics and allowing those in washington to rape pillage and burn us as they please.
      I might trust republicans more than democrats – but not much.

      Limiting the scope of government and therefore limiting the role of politics in our lives.

      ———–

      With respect to the rest, though each of us shares the problem – though not to the same extent.

      The problem is NOT with politics, it is with ourselves.

      I am constantly hearing that Trump divides us – aside from ignoring that the polls show the recent divisions started in 2009 and were at the worst before the election.

      Regardless, we divide ourselves.

      You toss off that everything is partisan – is if that excuses discerning what the truth is.

      None of the following is “libertarian” or “extreme”.

      Given multiple choices it IS possible to know to rank them in order of probability of truth.
      It is possible to reject many as demonstrably false.

      It is not moral to impose your will on another through force without justification.
      that is a near universal principle. It is not a libertarian principle.

      What constitutes sufficient justification for force is what determines ideology.

      If you do not want political conflict – confine politics – government to our near universally shared values.

      Politics becomes bitter when one tribe seeks to impose its will on the other by force.

      You can not have both political harmony and advance your own political agenda – whatever that agenda is – without near universal support for that agenda.

      You can not force others to believe what you want – you must persuade them.

  70. December 6, 2017 1:24 pm

    Jay, you have stated that you are not concerned with Mueller having unrestricted investigative power, using any and all tactics to lead to some indictment regardless to its association to Russian collusion.

    There have been many reports I heard this morning and read in the local paper that states the committee in the House has requested, sued and gone to court to obtain FBI inormation on certain people they were investigating. When they received that data, it was so redacted, they could not make sense of the words remaining. They were also refusing to give other information and finally relented.

    So another question. Do you believe the FBI and Mueller should be able to restrict information from congress when they want to do that if congress is also investigating the same potential crime? James Madison, while a representative from Virginia stated the “House should possess itself of the fullest information in order to doing justice to the country and to public officers.” Later, during another situation,a ” resolution to create a select committee, authorized “to call for such persons, papers, and records, as may be necessary to assist their inquiries.”

    Is the FBI adhering to thi thinking?

    • dhlii permalink
      December 6, 2017 4:54 pm

      There is no basis at all for the executive to restrict information about its actions from congress.

      There is a very small basis for restricting information on deliberations – i.e. the president should not have to devulge the advice a cabinet member gave but everything that he did as a result.

      There are national security reasons to require that the congressmen receiving classified informnation have a security clearance, and reason to prosecute them if they violate that.

      Beyond that – the executive does nto get to decide what congress can see.

      Democrats, republicans I do not care.

      • December 6, 2017 5:13 pm

        Dave this is the answer I would expect from you. I agree. But I want to know what our more left leaning “member” thinks the power of the FBI or special prosecutor should have.r

      • dhlii permalink
        December 6, 2017 5:37 pm

        It is nearly impossible to get them to commit to any limits on anything – unless it is repblicans investigating democrats – then everything is a witch hunt and actually lying under oath is not a crime.

        While I beleive in the real constitutional civil/.criminal rights positions being argued by Derschowitz, Turley and McCarthy on occasion,
        and I beleive them consistently – democrats, republicans, peodophiles, drug dealers.

        at the same time – atleast for the purposes of debate I am prepared to agree to anhy standard that is applied universally.

        If Trump asking Comey to let Flynn slide is obstruction – then Obama telling everyone while the investigation was ongoing that clinton was innocent is also.
        Give them adjoining cells.

        If Flynn is guilty – so are Adedin and Mill – actually they are more guilty. Mill in particular is guilty of destruction of evidence.

        If Trump is guilty of Collusion with Russia – whatever the Hell that is then Clinton is too.

        Pick and issue, any issue. Treat Republicans and democrats the same, and you will have less conflict with me.

        After the election I advocated here that Obama should pardon Clinton and her staff, and that if he Did not Trump should. And then we should step past all this and move on.

        But no! We had to wreak havoc on the past year because the left lost an election they thought they won and have no clue why. Nearly as important they do not understand that merely winning would change very little. The left has pissed off half the electorate. Pissing off only 45% changes little.

        I could have spent the last year joining the left in opposing the actually egregious things Trump sought to do – though mostly he has not tried to do the really egregious things he promised.

        Jay and Roby do not seem to grasp that it is possible to hate Trump and still agree on some issues.

      • December 6, 2017 10:29 pm

        Dave “Jay and Roby do not seem to grasp that it is possible to hate Trump and still agree on some issues.”

        That seems to be caused by the difference between hate that brings emotion into the equation compared to a dislike for someone.

        I disliked Bill Clinton based on his personal lifestyle. But, I thought he was a fairly good president, working with congress on some good legislation that would never see the light of day in this environment.

        I like many of the things Trump is doing. Tax reform. Not middle class and should not be sold like that by GOP, but makes our corporations from moving to the lower taxed EU.
        Immigration. Illegal crossing way down. Deportation way up. The laws are being enforced. If you dont agree with the actions, then change the laws.
        DACA. He has thrown this back to congress where it belongs, forcing them to do something.
        Jerusalem. In 1995, congress overwhelmingly passed legislation ( resolution?) that stated this is capital of Israel and the embassy would be moved. To appease the peace process that never happened . Trump is calling the bluff of all concerned and forcing the Palestinians to negotiate in good faith. Congress can vote to reverse their actions if they dont like it.
        North Korea, you negotiate from a position of strength. First president to make this decision.First he has to convince the Chinese that he will take military action before they really put the screws to Shorty.
        As for Trump as a person, I think he is despicable, I would not let him in my house, I would not attend any activity he was part of, no matter if he is President or not. Same with Bill and Hillary.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:36 am

        I would guess that it is more likely because – inside the public sphere libertarains react very strongly to reason and very weakly to emotion in decision making.

        I more than dislike Trump or Clinton. They are despicable in their treatment of women.
        Clinton is smoother, but also more malignant,
        But neither is a good person.

        But Clinton (outside of foreign policy where he was a failure) was a good president.
        Trump has the potential to be as good, maybe better.

        I do nto like the tax reform bill, there is a lot wrong with it. But it is much better than where we are.
        I am actually able to compromise.

        But we do need to follow with spending cuts.

        I am not where you are on immigration.

        I understand that we can reasonably expect to exclude people who intend to destroy us.
        I do not beleive we are obligated to offer immigrants citizenship, and absent entitlement reform we must be very careful about what entitlements we allow immigrants.

        But I do not otherwise think we should be wasting resources to stop immigrants.
        DACA should be passed – but WITHOUT an automatic path to citizenship.

        But I will agree with you that when the law and the constitution are consistent – we must change the law and/or the constitution.

        I have no problem with Trump’s moves on Israel.
        I think progress in the mideast is actually possible.
        Regardless, I do not think that we freeze time waiting for the palestinians to come to the table.

        I honestly thing the Israeli’s should end negotiations.
        Decide what constitutes the state of Israel, and say F$#k it to the Plaistinineans, you want a country, what is left is yours.
        I think the rest of the world would jump and scream for a while.
        But I think in the end there would be a palestinian state, and many of Israel’s issues with other countries would slowly diminish.

        We are in an incredibly dangerous position with NK.
        Trump did NOT get us there, presidents from atleast Clinton through Obama did that.
        I am scared shitless that Trump is handling NK. ‘
        But I do not have a better answer than he has.
        No one knows what is going to work – or not.
        It might be an unsolveable problem.
        Trump is atleast not shoving it under the rug.

      • December 7, 2017 11:55 am

        Dave “I am not where you are on immigration.”

        One may have different thoughts on immigration. What I am totally against is active laws being ignored by federal and state law enforcement due to dictates from a president or governor that circumvents the law on the books.

        They are elected to enforce the laws of the state or federal government. If they dont like the law ,CHANGE THE LAW, dont act like your a dictator!

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:22 pm

        Ron

        We are absolutely on the same page regarding the law.

        I WANT all laws, even BAD LAWS that I loathe vigorously enforced.

        One of the most effective ways to get rid of bad law is to enforce it.

        We do not work very hard to get rid of laws that are rarely enforced.
        Rarely enforced laws are just a cudgel that law enforcement can beat you with if you piss the wrong person off.

        All laws must be enforced with as little discretion as possible.

        Then we need to get rid of the stupid policies – there are not actual laws
        barring jurrors from being informed about jury nullification.

        In the colonies in the 18th century the british allowed colonial lawyers to argue to juries that a law was bad law and that even if it had been violated they could still choose to find the defendant not guilty.

        Jury nullification is a central premise to western law dating back almost to the magna carte.

        Yet in the US not only can;t a lawyer ever mention jury nullification to a jury, but private citizens can not pass out flyers informing juorrs that they are NOT obligated to follow the law.

        In fact judges ALWAYS tell the jury they are REQUIRED to follow the law, even if they think the law is bad. That standard juror instruction is actually a LIE.

        When a case is turned over to a jury – it is theirs to decide – period. For whatever reasons they wish. They are told that they may only decide the facts, but they are still free to pass judgemrnt on the law.

        It is very odd – because jury nullification is firmly ensconced in our law. Even the supreme court recongnizes and blesses it.
        But you are prohibited from talking about it.
        A jury can do it. It just can never know it can do it.

  71. Pat Riot permalink
    December 6, 2017 1:27 pm

    Roby, ‘ole friend, try not to be envious, resentful, frustrated, anger, bitter, fearful, vengeful, and full of outrage! Did I miss any? lol.

    Spare time? I’m stealing time away from important tasks to pop in here. I am nuts to pop in here. Why do we do it? Oh why do we do it?

    Of course we each do it for different reasons and also for some of the same reasons.

    Jay does it to vent, and to try to come to grips with his secret admiration for Trump.
    Dave does it for everyone else’s sake. He has a big, warm heart and is searching for a few principles to believe in.
    dduck has been waiting patiently for an opportunity to mention “weasel turds”.

    But seriously…

    Possible real reasons:
    1. There aren’t too many other places to express semi-thoughtful and thoughtful opinions. In real life our culture has drifted to perfunctory conversations (e.g. football for the men, home design ala HGTV for the women) or has us isolated and separated. Other places online are forerunners to “Idiocracy” and quickly degenerate into attacks.

    2. History is playing itself out right in front of us, and we are testing our opinions to understand it (?)

    3. We are all a little nuts.

    • dduck12 permalink
      December 6, 2017 2:56 pm

      4. I can’t have an intelligent moderate conversation with relatives or partisan Friends.
      OK, Trump is a weasel turd. Sorry Jay, my hand was forced.

      Actually I got the term from Bernard Corwells books- love them.

    • December 6, 2017 10:13 pm

      Great post, Pat. We probably are all a little nuts.

      Or, to paraphrase Edgar Allan Poe, we have become a little nuts, with long intervals of horrible sanity….

  72. Pat Riot permalink
    December 6, 2017 1:49 pm

    I have stayed out of the daughter/prostitution fray.

    I have passed on discussing the FBI investigations, allegations, indictments, and other political accusations playing out in the so-called news.

    I have my own investigation and indictment going on here at TNM regarding the “intellectual boxer,” the Black Knight, a.k.a. Deluge Dave!

    Dave, you have referred to yourself here as an “intellectual boxer”. Well you’d better continue sparing and maybe chase a live chicken around (Rocky I reference) because we’re going to go at it again, using logic and reasoning.

    Scheduled battle date: Sunday, December 10, 2017
    Place: TNM
    Now back to your regularly scheduled programming…

  73. Pat Riot permalink
    December 6, 2017 3:12 pm

    sparring

  74. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 6:08 pm

    So how goes the war on drugs ?

  75. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 6:09 pm

  76. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 6:14 pm

    What is not obvious from the abstract is that bogus adjustments being made to tidal gauge data introduced false sea level rise when it did not occur.

    https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s41748-017-0020-z

  77. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 6:15 pm

  78. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 6:17 pm

  79. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 6:18 pm

  80. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 6:21 pm

  81. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 6:23 pm

  82. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 6:24 pm

    Kind of speaks for itself
    The same is true of colleges.

  83. dhlii permalink
    December 6, 2017 7:00 pm

    “On March 2, Comey testified to a closed session of the House Intelligence Committee that, while Flynn may have had some honest failures of recollection during the interview, the agents who questioned him concluded that he did not lie.”

    • dhlii permalink
      December 6, 2017 7:02 pm

      This is actually quite bizzarre as it effectively exhonerates Strzok and Comey,
      at the very same time as it proves political bias, on the part of Mueller

      • Jay permalink
        December 6, 2017 11:43 pm

        Nonesense.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:48 am

        Are you saying that was not Comey’s testimony ?

        Sorry Jay. I am not making this up.
        The testimony speaks for itself.

    • Jay permalink
      December 6, 2017 11:42 pm

      So what?
      He pled TO lying.
      You know, admitted it.
      You saying Flynn’s lying about lying?
      Duh!

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:46 am

        People plead guilty to things they did not do all the time.

        You think it is OK to threaten someone’s family and life to threaten them with insurmountable legal bills to avoid fighting clearly bogus charges ?

        That is TEXTBOOK prosecutorial misconduct.

        Unfortunately is it pretty common.

        BTW nearly every single exonerated death row inmate “confessed”.
        You do not get on the exonerated list – because you get off on a technicality.
        You ONLY get there is you are subsequently PROVEN innocent – and usually that requires establishing who actually committed the crime.

        Regardless, I do not place much weight in a coerced confession

        I am not “saying” Flynn is lying about lying. It is actually a fact.
        Even Strzok said that Flynn’s remarks were not false.

        Further, Mueller getting Flynn to plead to a 18 usc 1001 violation is textbook stupid.
        When you plead to “lying” your future testimony is near worthless.
        Because you have admitted not merely that you lie but that you lie when you are required to tell the truth.

        You do not plead someone to 19 usc 1001 if you expect to use them as a witness.

  84. Jay permalink
    December 6, 2017 11:45 pm

    “The fact that an FBI agent involved in the Clinton emails investigation was reportedly a partisan Democrat is not in itself damning.”

    Correct.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/454413/fbi-agent-peter-strzok-justice-department

    • Jay permalink
      December 6, 2017 11:55 pm

      Strzok should be awarded a Medal Of Patriotism.
      And the gratitude of the nation.
      The next Democratic Prez in 2020 should promote him to run the agency.

      The statute of limitations for crimes tRUMP committed before he was elected will still be in effect (money laundering, anyone?) and the agencies Sneaky Don has badmouthed like the FBI will pounce on his crooked ass.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:56 am

        You still do not understand what Money Laundering is – but then neither does Mueller.

        It is near certain that Trump is not guilty of and can not be convicted of money laundering.
        That would require him to make the money as a result of a crime.

        The thing you are actually likely addressing is tax evasion.
        There are likely an army of accountants and lawyers involved in preparing Trump’s tax return.
        You are never getting him on Tax evasion.

        Regardless the Deutche bank subpeona story has been walked back – corrected, it is fake news.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:58 am

        Elswhere I found an interesting observation regarding the culture in the FBI.

        The vast majority of the rank and file agents are still relatively conservative.
        But the ranking agents and managers are near universally left of center.

        You may find that the FBI will celebrate if Trump purges their managers.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 3:00 am

        While the fact that Strzok told Comey that Flynn had not lied makes me think more favorably of Strzok. The Clinton investigation was botched.

        When you have a long list of decisions that all go one way – that is bias.

    • Jay permalink
      December 7, 2017 12:14 am

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 3:18 am

        If he did not want demoted – he shoudl have done his job.

        I would note that Sally Yates argued that Flynn could be “blackmailed” my Russia because he “lied” to Pense, that was a ludicrous claim.

        Say Kislyak comes to Flynn and says – “give me the nuclear codes or I will tell the vice president you lied to him.”

        Flynn – “F#$k you, and the horse you rode in on. its a job, that is all”

        Strzok might well have been an exception intelligence agent.

        He still botched one investigation and is jepharizing another.

        I would also note that the FBI is still straightlaced enough that Adultery is likely to get you demoted all by itself.

        Regardless, Ztrzok brought all this on himself.

        But like a typical left wing nut, you do not grasp that when you cause your own problems, you do not get to be the victiim.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 7, 2017 2:52 am

      Here I will disagree with McCarthy – though not specifically on Strzok.

      There are TWO issues.

      Both Comey and Strzok concluded that Flynn had not violated the law – had not lied.

      That makes Mueller, not Strzok biased.

      That said the facts of the Strzok interview are entrapment – making Mueller look even worse.

      I would further note this came out as a consequence of an even larger IG investigation into the FBI handling of the Clinton investigation.
      The results of that are due in December.

  85. Jay permalink
    December 7, 2017 12:01 am

    If there’s Nothing To Hide….?

    “Trump Jr. cites attorney-client privilege in not answering panel’s questions about discussions with his father
    By KYLE CHENEY 12/06/2017 07:37 PM EST

    Donald Trump Jr. on Wednesday cited attorney-client privilege to avoid telling lawmakers about a conversation he had with his father, President Donald Trump, after news broke this summer that the younger Trump — and top campaign brass — had met with Russia-connected individuals in Trump Tower during the 2016 campaign.”

    “https://www.politico.com/story/2017/12/06/donald-trump-privilege-questions-284841”

    • December 7, 2017 12:36 am

      Jay,, (Second Try, damn Word Press)
      Jay, I would not answer any of their question either. I would find every legal loophole to jump through I possibly could.

      You trust government, I do not. They could asked a question, he could answer it, they have written record. Then the FBI questions him, asked the same question in a slightly different format, he answers it, they have a written record.

      They get panels record and compare it. BINGO HE LIED!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Now he is in for years of investigation, threats, and any other force the FBI and Muller can imagine to flip Donald Jr. Not because he lied, but because his answers did not follow a script and there was something slightly different they could hold over him.

      Again, you trust Muller and the government not to entrap someone. I do not!

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 9:32 am

        I’ ‘trust’ government on a case by case basis, sometimes they get it right, sometimes wrong.

        With Mueller, I’m trusting he does whatever’s necessary to rid the nation of Cancerous Donnie and Family.

        Ever hear of Al Capone?

        A thug, a killer, a bootlegger who corrupted the entire city of Chicago – police and courts included. The Feds were charged with investigating him, and bringing him down. They couldn’t get evidence to convict on bootlegging, murdering, or corrupting public officials. So they got him instead for tax evasion.

        If that was today you’d probably be bitching about the prosecutors exceeding their charged authority: how dare they investigatie and prosecute anything but bootlegging, murder, and corruption!

        In the Mueller investigation, far as I’m concerned the ends justify the means. You may be content to leave in office an habitual liar, a money launderer, a vagina grabbing Buffoon, a collaborator with foreign governments hostile to the US – but if evidence surfaces to show ANY of those behaviors are varifiable, I don’t care how Mueller or any of his investigators uncovers it. A President who is EXEMPT from the ordinary laws of the land that you and I are in legal jeopardy if we break, needs MORE prosecutorial scrutiny than ordinary citizens.

        Before tRUMP ran for President the FBI and other agencies had dossiers on his associations with Russians and organized crime figures. You suggesting it would have been responsible for them to ignore that?

        Dump the Schlump!
        Medals for those who assist accomplishing it!

      • December 7, 2017 12:42 pm

        Jay, you make a good arguement. (Al Capone)
        However, there is one difference. The FBI answers to the justice department. In most all investigations, there are two investigators who send their findings to 5 supervisory type FBI agents who review those findings. If they agree, those are sent to a prosecutor who reviews the findings and sends those findings to a grand jury to recommend an indictment or not.

        A Special Council(mueller) is not bound by all these reviews. He has almost unfettered authority to investigate and send findings to a grand jury without oversight. Unless he wants “to investigate new matters that come to light in the course of his or her investigation”, he has no one to oversee his work. And in my thinking, you could almost tie almost anything to “new matters”. He can threaten and force deals without going to a prosecutor first.

        If there is something to investigate, let the proper authorities investigate. If you accept that Comey investigated Clinton fairly and thoroughly, then why would the FBI not investigate Trump thoroughly using acceptable investigative procedures.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:50 pm

        One of the things that is coming out that is damaging to Mueller but Not Strzok,

        Is that Strzok and Comey has already decided there was no case against Flynn.
        Comey testified to that

        So we have a FBI agent and an FBI director who was fired by Trump,
        who determined there was no obstruction, and a new special prosecutor says,
        nope, their wrong, go hang him ?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:52 pm

        Sorry, no false statement, not no obstruction

        If there is this wide a difference fo oppinion over whether Flynn’s statement was false.

        It can not and should not be a crime.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 3:10 pm

        tRUMP is ten times more detrimental to this nation’s safety, welfare, future than Capone ever was.

        Laurels to those who ensnare him for ANY illegal acts he’s committed

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 6:24 pm

        “tRUMP is ten times more detrimental to this nation’s safety, welfare, future than Capone ever was.”

        And the evidence of that is that you do not like him. That is all.

        “Laurels to those who ensnare him for ANY illegal acts he’s committed”

        Thus far there is absolutley ZERO evidence of anything illegal.
        We remain investigating your HOPE that you will find something.

        We have actual crimes with respect to the prior administration,

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 1:35 pm

        Completely ignoring partisnaship issues the record of the FBI – or the government in general is abysmal.

        Regardless why is your trust on a “case by case” basis ?

        Are people who are incompetent on Tuedsay, competent on Thursday ?
        Are people who are biased on Monday, non-partisan on Friday ?

        While one would expect variations in competance and bias through government.

        One would not expect it on a “case by case” basis.

        If the VA can not manage case loads, then it is highly likely that similar issues exist throughout government.

        All parts of the federal government are staffed by much the same people, the same civil service system, the same bad incentives.

        While one should not expect exactly the same problems from division to division.
        We should expect problems that are rooted in the causes that we can expect to be uniform throughout the government.

        We have a massive problem in academia right now, that manafests itself in the crap going on at Wilfred Laurrie (I know that is canada), Evergree, Middlebury, Berkeley, .

        It is the consequence of academia going from 4:1 left/right to 17:1 from 1970 to the present.
        That shift not merely moves the academy left, it even moves the left, further left, and it makes the left portion of the academy more homogenous and more intolerant – particularly of deviation within its own. The rare conservative academic has more actual academic freedom that a left leaning academic – the conservative will get about the same reaction no matter what. But the left academic will get tarred and feathered for small deviations from dogma.

        Government is not 19:1 left/right. at those levels of homogenity the peer and ideological pressures are bot enormous – and from the inside seem almost invisible. The people in government have little or no experience with conservatives or conservatism. “those people” are alien to them – they can not see them as human.

        Look at your own posts – you are a reflection of that problem.
        The more insular you get the easier it is to demonize the other.
        It works the same for both the left and right.
        But in the real world today – most republicans live in “pink” parts of the country – they out number democrats in their homes, but only by a little, but most democrats live in tiny highly populated dark blue enclaves. They do not know anyone who is a republican, and if they do that person probably will not admit it.

        In that environment demonizing, name calling becomes easy. So long as you do not have to look the “other” in the face, it is easy to call them “deplorable”, hating hateful haters,

        We have seen what happens when the academy skews to far one direction,
        We have seen what happens in regions where the electorate skews too far one direction.
        Why would you think government is different ?

        I would note – this is not uniquely a left problem – when and where we skew 20:1 right left we will see the same thing in reverse. but today the left and certain institutions are homogenous and insular to the left, not right.

        Government – whether left or right and whether biased or not has the wrong incentives for competence – please learn something about “public choice”.
        Most simply understood it means that all the things that you think will go wrong in a free market also effect government and in that arena they tend to play out worse. Humans do not change their character by virtue of working for government, though the character of govenrment inherently attracts specific tops of humans that does not lead to high levels of competence.

        Regardless, my point is that the forces of homogenity in government are large and powerful.
        expecting significant variation on a “case by case” basis it irrational.

        The opposite is more true, the government will have an overall character that is relatively uniform, and deviation will be unusual. The question then becomes whether Strzok is the norm or an abberance, and there is plenty of evidence for the former.

        We are now hearing of one of the key attornies on Muellers staff emailing Sally Yates to congradulate her for not defending Trump’s immigration executive order.

        People are free to do that – we are free to be biased.
        The relevant question is not whether people can hold biases but whether biased people can conduct a fair investigation.

        The yates email is evidence that this person can not.
        The Trump EO was constitutional. Outside of the extreme left and a few nutcase judges that was never in question. the most recent decision unblocking even minor narrowing was 7-2.
        This was NEVER a close issue. Yates was never able to explain why it was unconstitutional.

        You can agree with the president, or not, you can speak out or not. you can determine for yourself what you will and will not do. But as attorney general of the US if you think the president is asking you to do something unconstitutional you must resign. You can #resist outside the executive.
        If you do not resign – they you ARE by definition too partisan or biased to serve.
        You are unable to distinguish your own values from the constitution and the law.

        Most of us here not on the lunatic left grasp that the constitution and the law are not exactly as we would want them. We even understand that though the constitution says one thing the courts have found it to mean another – and like it or not that is “the law”.
        We work to change the law and the constitution to what we think they ought to be.
        But we do not pretend that it just is what we want, or use the power of government to impose law that suits us – rather than the law and constitution as they are.

        We had 8 years of Obama making up the law as he went along. The Obama administration after 4 years had set a record for the number of unanimous supreme court decisions AGAINST it.

        That is a profound sign that those in government were so biased they could not see any viewpoint besides their own.

        That is what congradulating Sally Yates demonstrates – and inability to see anything but what you want to see.

        Anyone who wants is free to congradulate Sally Yates, but anyone who has publicly done so is not qualified for a role invovled in applying the law as it is, in an investigation.

        This is similarly true of Strzok. We all know that FBI agents are biased – all of us are.
        That is not the issue. That Strzok supported Clinton and opposed Trump is not the issue.
        That he was not cognizant of the fact that texting his paramour – another DOJ attorney biased messages was problematic is the actual issue.

        All of us are biased. Most of us say – but I will try to do my job without bias.
        We fail to differnet degrees. Those whose biases are so strong they can not keep them from popping out are the ones way too biased to be part of an investigation that has a partisan character.

        Strzok may well be a great guy and a brilliant agent. I do not care who he voted for. I do care that he demonstrated poor and partisan judgement in this one thing. Because it means he is not capable of even trying to make unpartisan judgement in others.
        Just as the attorney who publicly congradulated Sally Yates.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 1:38 pm

        The ends never justifies the means.
        All of us at times find that appealing.
        But it is never true.

        That is an obviously immoral position.

        It is the same as “by any means necescary”.

        It means you will lie, cheat, kill, maime to get what you beleive is a good end.
        It means you can never get a good end as the means you use will ultimately polute you end.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 1:46 pm

        You have OPENLY presumed that the president is lawless – based purely on your emotions and dislike for him, and from that you are demanding lawless actions to prove it.

        Do you not understand that once you will lie to “prove” someone else is a liar – the only thing that is actually know is that you are a liar.

        Unless Mueller conducts his investigation fully lawfully, we can not know that his results are truth.

        The Flynn plea is the perfect example.

        Flynn has plead guilty to lying to the FBI.

        “The Lie” is something that Trump was unable to see, that Trump’s attorney was unable to see, that Strzok and Comey did not see.
        “The Lie” did not occur in a prescheduled interview where Flynn knew that the absolute truth was required and had the benefit of legal advice, it occurred in a converstation that was represented to Flynn as a routine discussion of security procedures.

        We can debate for hours whether there was a actual lie.

        We should not have to debate that we can not criminalize something that most of us can not recognize as a crime.

        You are arguing for a partisan police state.

        You demonstrate bias so high that you are prepared to do harm to others because you beleive they are wrong.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 1:51 pm

        “Before tRUMP ran for President the FBI and other agencies had dossiers on his associations with Russians and organized crime figures. You suggesting it would have been responsible for them to ignore that?”

        That would be the Steele Dossier produced by FSB agents, that is so bad the press would not touch it for months.

        Regardless, Barack Obama has “know associates” who were violent domestic and forieng terrorists, as well strong ties to a radical minister

        Should the FBI have been investigating him ?

        Are we going to go back to Hoover’s FBI and start wiretapping Malcom X and Martin Luther King ?

        We investigate ACTUAL REAL CRIMES. We do not subject US citizens to the terrible investigative powers of the federal government without KNOWING that a crime has taken place, and KNOWING that the people targeted are involved.

        We STILL have neither.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 3:18 pm

        Don’t you read clearly?
        I said dossiers BEFORE the campaign.
        That excludes Steele.

        They had info on Duplicitous Donnie from years before that, contacts with known Mafia associates, Russian business contacts and loans, prior to the campaign. All that’s been reported numerous times.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 6:30 pm

        “They had info on Duplicitous Donnie from years before that, contacts with known Mafia associates, Russian business contacts and loans, prior to the campaign. All that’s been reported numerous times.”

        Your claim that something exists does not make it exist.

        I had a client who we designed a 3.5M home for in Phila, who had an italian name, whose family was involved in the garbage business, who had relatives that I am sure you have heard named on TV.

        You do not seem to think what “known mafia associates” means.
        My wife represents people who are known criminals – that is what public defenders do.
        Trump ran Miss America in Moscow. I am pretty sure he had to meet with Russians to do that.

        My first mortgage was sold 3 times in the first couple of days after I got it.
        I am pretty sure that for a brief time it was owned by a drug front in Miami.

        None of that is a crime even if true.

        We do not investigate people because we do not like them, or who they do business with or who they hang out with.

      • December 7, 2017 3:51 pm

        Jay, “I’ ‘trust’ government on a case by case basis, sometimes they get it right, sometimes wrong.”

        Thinking like this putting trust on a very slippery slope. You are placing your guaranteed rights in a man that has no one to basically answer to. I know I am beating a dead horse with this, but when you jeopardize just one freedom in return for information that may or may jot uncover some illegal activity, then you can just throw the constitution and bill of rights in the trash because there will be no one to stop the next infringement on rights. “Sometimes they get it right, sometimes they get it wrong” It only takes one time to be too many¡!!!!!!!!!

      • Anonymous permalink
        December 7, 2017 3:09 pm

        Ron, just agreeing with you about not answering questions. I don’t know if it truly is as it was once described to me, but I have heard that if you are testifying to congress and they ask you what you had for breakfast and you respond: Eggs, two pieces of bacon, and coffee, then later you get asked again and you respond: Eggs, two pieces of bacon, and orange juice, you little confused inconsistency in your answer about any innocuous detail, can get you into a lot of trouble. Again, I’m not certain that is so, but with the government having such enormous power and resources (much more than they should have) I would hesitate to answer any questions I wasn’t absolutely compelled to answer a government entity. Mike Hatcher

      • December 7, 2017 4:02 pm

        Mike, your understanding and my understanding is the same. Anyone making a comment or answering a question without written script in front of them and reading it word for word is either a moron or getting very bad legal advice. And even then I most likely would not answer. Contempt is much easier to fight than “lying to” whoever.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 6:44 pm

        We can dispute details and the law,

        But the fact is one outcome of the Flynn plea is everyone is going to shut up.
        It is going to be much harder to get anyone to say anything.

        When you compel someone to plea to lying and most people can not even tell what the lie was, the result will be people will be very very careful about what they say and will say nothing if possible.

        You are driving us towards the situation in the USSR.
        It is much harder to get people for what they don’t say, than what they do.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 6:21 pm

        Mike;

        You can look up the requirements for crimes of falsification online – the codes and caselaw are readily available.

        There are TWO different issues with Congress.

        They are governed by different rules than criminal and civil proceedings.
        They do not need probable cause to ask and there is no judge to prevent inadmissible evidence from getting in.

        Further congress has no direct ability to criminally punish you.
        But they can make your life miserable.

        I have no doubt that POLITICALLY you can get in deep trouble for trivial inconsistencies in testimony to congress.

        Criminally Crimes of Falsification have strict narrow requirements.

        You must say something clearly false.
        That false thing must be significant enough that it might alter the outcome.

        As an example saying that some event occured at 11 when it actually occered at 10 would be a crime – if the time it occured matters, but not if it did not.
        You are not expected to get unimportant things perfect.

        Both in criminal and civil procedings and with testimony before congress they opportuntiy exists to revise your testimony or statements.
        You have generally not committed a crime until you have had the oportunity to reveiw and correct your testimony.
        This is also true about written submissions which is why there were a flurry of corrections to various Trump staff filings – because they are allowed to correct them.

        It is also surprising that Flynn did not correct his FBI interview immediatly after he was fired.
        My bet is that he did not – because he did not know he was being interviewed.

        In many legal proceedings there are accusations that someone lied.
        It is very nearly impossible to have a legal proceeding in which someone does not lie about something,

        You are likely used to seeing lawyers on TV tear about witnesses for lying – and that does happen.

        But all – even most lies under oath are not criminally prossecutable perjury or falsification.

        They are punished – by not beleiving the person telling the lie.

        With respect to the recent Trump Jr. assertion of priviledge – it is a weak claim.
        It is still a valid one, but if he faced a truly hostile inquiry he would likely lose – and then he would take the 5th, because the only way arround that is to give him immunitiy.

        Schiff huffed and puffed, but he did not have the power to force the issue and new it.

        In front of congress you can say – I am not going to answer that question.
        And about the only thing they can do is hold you in contempt, and then the DOJ must prosecute.

        We are having battles over that right now – DOJ and FBI are not providing Nunes and Grassley with subpeoned documents We had them with Obama.
        If Congress demands something and it is not provided, DOJ/FBI must get it for them.
        When congress demands something of DOJ/FBI – who makes sure they get it ?

    • dhlii permalink
      December 7, 2017 3:11 am

      Given the Flynn/Mueller plea I would expect that everyone is going to avoid testifying about anything it this point.
      I would.

      Attorney Client priviledge is complex. Unless the attorney represents bot Thump and Trump Jr. not only is there no privilidge, but the presence of both Trump and Trump Jr. destroy’s privilidge.

      But if there was an attorney, and he represented both, and the conversation was in the context of legal representation, then yes Attorney-Client does apply.

      You can not make an attorney testify about his client, you can not make a client testify about what he told his attorney.

      There is also a separate privilidge that Trump has not used – that is executive privildge.
      If the conversation was in the context of Trump’s duties as president and Trump Jr. was an advisor – I do not think he is a member of the administration, then the conversation is likely priviledged.

      Regardless, I think at this point you are unlikely to see the Trumps agee to FBI interviews, or to further testimony, and to the extent they do every word they utter is going to be thoroughly vetted by a lawyer – and in most instances, they will not answer – the lawyer will answer for them.

      That is what happens when you pull this 18 USC 1001 crap with something no one thinks is a lie.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 9:37 am

        Why clam up if you have nothing unseemly, unethical, or illegal to hide?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:11 pm

        “Why clam up if you have nothing unseemly, unethical, or illegal to hide?”

        After you post that you expect Mueller to do anything necescary to get a conviction – you can say that with a straight face ?

        Regardless, your desire to know something does not create an obligation for me to tell.
        My innocence does not create an obligation to tell.

        The experience of Flynn should clearly demonstrate why from thiis point forward it is going to be damn near impossible to get anyone to talk.

        That is the consequence when you manufacture lies and prosecute that criminally.

        You can not be charged with lying if you do not talk.

        When stating the truth differently from the way the investigator wishes to hear it is criminalized – people stop cooperating.

        There has long been a public policy argument that 18 USC 1001 is an abysmally bad idea.

        There is not an equivalent with respect to state law enforcement.
        Lying to a police officer is very dangerous.
        Not because they can charge you with “lying to the police” – they typically can’t.
        But because they get to use your lies in court to discredit you.

        That is the proper use of lies to the FBI.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 3:04 pm

        Blah blah blah!
        We need to hold people in power like Schlump and his family to a stricter standard, Dave.
        They have to be FORCED to be truthful, with aggressive scrutiny. And if guilty, severe PUNISHMENT

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 4:46 pm

        What rights you grant those you hate the most are the most rights you can count on yourself.

        Justice is blind. It does not know or care who it is being applied to.

        Regardless, are you saying that Trump Jr. and Cushner and Flynn and Manafort and Papadoulis need to be held to a jigher standard than Clinton, Abedin. Mill, Obama, Lynch, Comey ?

        I would also suggest that you want to FORCE them to be “truthful” because it is self evident that what you hoped to find has not emerged.

        That leaves only two possibilities – the highly unlikely one that you have chosen, that Trump the all powerful has successfully run a huge conspiracy that no one can actually find – because he is so powerful he can keep it secret,
        or there is nothing there.

        Get a clue, there is nothing there. The entire Russia Collusion nonsense bothered me from the begining. Something just did not work for me. That was until Comey was fired.

        That is when I realized the narrative was impossible.

        There are ONLY two ways you can actually “get” trump.
        Essentially there are only two things that will be generally accpeted as unforgivably wrong, and illegal.

        Trump participating in hacking voting machines – and todate no one has alleged that.
        Trump participating in hacking the DNC – and you can not even establish the DNC was hacked rather than leaked or that it was the Russians much less that Trump was involved.

        Anyway, those are the only two things that if you establish this ends instantly and Trump is toast.

        It does not matter if no votes were changed, or if there was an effect on the outcome.

        The left has that part totally wrong. Finding something that changed the election is irrelevant.
        The outcomes of elections can change for myriads of reasons.
        Only ones that involve actual crimes matter.

        While you have not even been able to establish meetings of consequence with Russians, even if you did – they are not a crime. Discovering more significant meetings with Russia would likely harm Trump – but it STILL would not be a crime.
        It is not illegal or improper for Trump to meet with foreign leaders – Trump met with the Mexican President. There are indications that someone tried to setup a meeting with Putin.
        There is nothing wrong with that.
        Should something like that show up now – it would be damaging only because it has been secret..
        Discovering that the Trump campaign has secrets would be damaging – atleast to small minds, of course they have secrets. but it is not a crime.

        My point – what I realized after Comey was fired is with very few exceptions even if you found what you are looking for – it would not be a crime.

        There is only one reason for Trump to say they had few if any meetings with anyone associated with Russia – and that is because they did not.
        Had Trump provided a list of say half a dozen contacts between Russia and Trump campaign in Jan 2017 – it would have been a story for a few days.

        If we found 10.000 emails trying to arrange a face to face between Trump and Putin – it would be a week long story.

        The only reason for Trump to say there was little or no contact is because he believes there was little or no contact.

        Trump ands his lawyers are not so stupid as to lie about contact that could be trivially explained away.

        What is fundimentally going on here is the left can not beleive that Trump won, since he did, he must have ‘cheated” and you are going to keep up the witch hunt until you find “cheating”

        You do not seem to grasp that if you don’t – you are going ot look VERY BAD.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 5:48 pm

        So much wishy-washy pontification it makes the head spin.

        Why bother with you at all… it’s like trying to find coherent meaning in the sloshy turning water inside a washing machine.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 6:53 pm

        “So much wishy-washy pontification it makes the head spin.”

        Not in the slightest “wishy washy”
        it is the foundations of western law.

        “Why bother with you at all”
        I do not make your choices

        “it’s like trying to find coherent meaning in the sloshy turning water inside a washing machine.”

        Pretty clear

        The ends do not justify the means.

        You may not initiate force against others.

        the only rights you have are those you allow others.

        Pretty clear.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 4:54 pm

        Your remarks pretty much epitomize why government use of FORCE must be justified.

        Left, Right, it does not matter, there will ALWAYS be someone who wants to use force in govenrment.

        They will want to use force against their enemies.

        I actually think one of the problems with the modern left – is that because for the left “the ends justify the means” you beleive the same for everyone else.

        Obama did use the federal government as a political weapon against enemies and you defended it. Whether is was fast and furious, IRSgate, Benghazi, U1, CF pay for play, the email scandal or unmasking.

        You and I both know that most of these were not innocent nor incompetent.

        These were efforts to use the power of the federal government for personal or political gain or both. And you stood behind them – the ends justifies the means.

        Now Trump is president – you are sure that he behaves exactly the same as you do – the ends justifies the means.

        Because you have engaged in your own misconduct or justified misconduct, you will not accept that Trump could possibly be more moral than you are.

        Because you have done evil for “good reasons” you can not except that others have not done evil for bad reasons.

        You see Trump as dangerous – because if you had power, you would be dangerous.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 7, 2017 3:38 am

      If you read down further, The questions were in regard to the crafting of Trump Jr.’s response to requests for information about his meeting with Natalia.

      The questions were specific to the crafting of that response.
      If Trump Sr. were not in the room – Trump Jr.’s claim of priviledge would be correct.

      If Trump Sr. is in the room AND Both are represented by the Attorney present and the communications are related to preparing the response – then priviledge likely still applies.

      Regardless, The committee can:
      Offer immunity thereby waiving priviledge,
      or
      consult the committe’s lawyers and decide if priviledge does apply and if they are going to force the issue.

      They did’nt.

      My guess is that the issue is in a grey area – i.e. whether priviledge applid depends on exactly what was said, and since you can not find out exactly what was said without Trump Jr. testifying,
      Trump Jr. likely wins.
      The committee did not force testimony anyway.

      Regardless, we all know what Schiff was after

      “daddy helped you write that didn’t he ?”

      And your not going to get an answer.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 9:36 am

        Keep rationalizing guilty behavior. You’re good at that.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 2:04 pm

        “guilty behavior” is not the standard – the law is.

        Part of the problem remains that you seem to beleive that the government can pry into anyone’s life as deep as they please merely because you want to know answers.

        I am currious – I want to know what was said.

        But my wanting to know is not the same as having a right to know.

        The 4th ammendment. which we have shredded and burned, the 5th amendment, and the assorted priviledges – as well as the requirement that law enforcement be investigating and actual crime, and have probable cause before it can pry into your life are the impediments to governemnt digging into whatever it wants – just because you want to know.

        It does not matter whether Trump/Trump Jr. are actually “guilty” of something.
        You need more than your “beleif” to search for the evidence you hope to find.

        I think Trump Jr.’s claim of privildge in this instance was weak.

        At the same time I do not think you are EVER going to get this question answered – because there is another inviolable privildge that does apply – the 5th amendment.
        Which contrary to popularly belief protects you from testifying against yourself.
        Because left nutcases have already asserted that the statement was coordinated, and that the coordination was obstruction – which is not true, Trump Jr. can never be forced to testify about it.
        He might choose to do so.
        But your mere loudly publicly expressed belief that it was a crime means he will never have to.

        Trump Jr.’s assertion of attorney client priviledge was a sort of weak guanntet.
        He was saying – I am not going to answer this question.
        I can tie you up with a fight over attorney client priviledge if you want for possibly weeks and if I loose I will be refusing on 5th ammendment grounds.

        Trump Jr. did not want to lead with 5th amendment because idiots like you think that is the same has a confession.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 5:50 pm

        ““guilty behavior” is not the standard – the law is.”

        when it comes to Impeachment, BEHAVIOR IS the standard

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 6:54 pm

        When it comes to impeachment congress decides the standard.

        Not happening.

  86. Jay permalink
    December 7, 2017 8:52 am

    The Beloved President Garners Praise From Vets

    • December 7, 2017 12:20 pm

      Jay, Once again your liberal hatred has introduced hysterical emotion into your thoughts.
      There REALLY IS limited resources in the federal budget. So now the vets can not go to the doc of their choice. The money was being reallocated from homeless housing to medical care. So now they wait months for healthcare and die before getting treatment . And that is widely documented as happening.

      If you dont like what is happening. dont use the vets as a tool for Trump hate spreading. Use something like the 1.5 trillion added to the debt that should not happen and the money should be sent to the veterans admin. to fund both healthcare AND homeless program..

      And to stake my place on taxes, I support corporate rates at 20%, very few deductions, no hedge fund special regs, the end of SALT deductions and the difference made up by other tax code changes to make the changes budget neutral based on the last completed budget year. None of this lying congressional growth/tax revenue projections.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 5:53 pm

        “your liberal hatred”
        I don’t hate Liberals, Ron. I tolerate them better than trump Republicans and Moore conservatives.

      • December 7, 2017 6:47 pm

        “your liberal hatred” meaning your !iberal political position driving your hatred for Trump.
        Use as adjective, not noun.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 6:01 pm

        And tell it to the American Vet whose tweet I posted to stop using himself as a tool for trump hate spreading. Tell him he can’t hate who he wants to hate. I’m pretty sure what he’d tell you in return, deservedly.

        BTW, do you know how high the Vet suicide rate is? Here’s a hint:

        “Suicide rates for veterans climb to “staggering” proportions.”

        Think reducing funds for Vets who need help is going to raise those numbers even higher?

        http://foreignpolicy.com/2017/09/18/veterans-administration-throws-suicide-stats-out-the-back-door-on-friday-at-5-pm/

      • December 7, 2017 6:55 pm

        Good grief, there is no way to have a discussion on issueswithout your hatred for Trump getting all your attention.

        “Trump wants to shift vet admin budget moneys from one program to improve another OH GOD tRUMP IS CRAPPING ON THE VETS!!r

        Where were you when I was having a cow posting many comments about the abysmal healthcare our vets are getting? Not a word from you. But now its a big deal?

        Its OK for Obama to fuck kver the vets, but when Trump makes a proposal to shift money to healthcare, you now have a cow.

        HYPOCRITE ¡!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Jay permalink
        December 8, 2017 1:00 am

        “Where were you when I was having a cow posting many comments about the abysmal healthcare our vets are getting? Not a word from you. But now its a big deal?”

        Honestly, Ron, I don’t read all the comments. And I have no recollection of reading the comments you mention. I certainly have been sympathetic to the poor way vets have been treated, poor healthcare and other bad faith treatment as well.

        “Its OK for Obama to fuck kver the vets, but when Trump makes a proposal to shift money to healthcare, you now have a cow.”

        His version of shifting money is taking it from program A and reducing the money before shifting it to program B.

        https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/poverty/reports/2017/09/26/439661/5-ways-president-trump-congressional-republicans-betraying-veterans/

      • dhlii permalink
        December 8, 2017 1:20 am

        A link from americanprogress ?

        Regardless, fine you do not read all the comments.
        OK, your choice.

        But given that you only start frothing at the mouth when you found some left wing nut spouting “Argh!! Trump” garbage, do not expect to be take seriously.

        The VA is a mess, it has been for a long time.
        We have been spending more and more on it for years and years and it is getting worse and worse.

        It is too early to blame problems at the VA on Trump – but unfortunately I do not expect it will be better when he leaves.

        But it is probable that it will not be more expensive.

        If we are going to F#$k up, the least we can do is not blow even more money too.

        I will not be TOO hard on the VA under Obama – because the VA has ALWAYS been a disaster. ‘
        It got worse under Bush, it got more expensive under Bush, it got worse under Obama, it got more expensive under Obama.

        It is also an absolutely fantastic example why government healthcare does nto work.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 7:00 pm

        Read your own article.

        Regardless, rates have always been high.
        They were surprisingly higher under Obama than Bush.
        They appear to be going down slightly.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 7:02 pm

        How are you connecting suicide rates to homelessness ?

        How are you connecting either to federal spending ?

        Maybe getting out of stupid foreign military interventions might reduce the homesless and suicide rates – and save money.

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 9:14 pm

        I’m assuming homelessness leads to desperation leads to depression leads to suicide.
        Therefore more of any of the above also increases suicidal ideation which increases suicidal attempts which increases successful suicidal attempts.

        You have evidence that’s no so?

        There’s numerous studies supporting increasing Vet suicide rates I believe, like this one:

        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12501966

      • dhlii permalink
        December 8, 2017 1:12 am

        The study you link to says nothing about overally rising vet suicide rates.

        The current rates are high – they rose through much of Obama’s term, but strated dropping arround 2013 or 2014. Though they are still high.

        Wow, Homelessness correlates to suicide.!!! News at eleven.

        We have lots of homeless programs, and I would expect because they do on nearly all federal programs that Vets get preference.

        We do not need the VA to have mirrors of every program in existance.
        Do vets as an example need their own separate foodstamps program ?

        Finnally I would say that you are arguing that spending money is the same as actually doing something about a problem.

        After the fiasco at the VA some time ago we bipartisan spent alot more money on the VA,
        Things got worse.

        With most government programs money is not the problem.

        There are myriads of problems
        Starting with belief in magic.

        One of the reasons that private solutions always work better is that privately we rarely just throw money at problems.

        The entire engine of the free market is doing more with less.

        We sometimes spend small amounts of money to figure out how to do more with less.
        But we rarely just spend more money and expect better results.

        If you want government to actually deliver – the first and most important thing you need to address, is the incentives.

        Throughout the government workers must benefit if they deliver results that the people see as valuable, and suffer consequences if they do not.

        Today government workers benefit if they spend more. Not if they deliver more.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 7, 2017 12:43 pm

      Money, is not support,
      Money is not action.
      Money assures nothing.

      We spent a small fortune making the VA work better – it has gotten worse.

      The amount of money the federal government spends on something has no relationship to the value it delivers.

      Caring for people
      is not “giving them money”

    • dhlii permalink
      December 7, 2017 12:46 pm

      Who knows,
      He is old enough that most anything should concern us.
      So is Hillary.

      It is entirely possible that he could fie, or have a serious health problem – tomorow, in a year, in 10 years.

      That is just how it is.

      So you want to celebrate that ?
      If something bad happens to ANYONE you want to cheer ?

      • Jay permalink
        December 7, 2017 3:24 pm

        You’re damn right I’d celebrate.
        A very American response,
        Just substitute ‘Wicked Son Of A Bitch’ in the appropriate place:

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 6:33 pm

        Celebrating the misfortune of others ?

        I think there are right wing nuts posting right not that God is punished Sodom and Gomorah as California burns.

        How is that different from what you are doing ?

  87. Jay permalink
    December 7, 2017 12:04 pm

    OK Dave – time for you to Zip It for a week.
    Oh, right – you remained silent on that wager…

    https://apnews.com/0cb35e74a6884d93b66fd82d2787b969

    • dhlii permalink
      December 7, 2017 2:44 pm

      You have to get past this misperception that I am some tribal partisan republican.

      I am glad Franken has chosen to resign. It is the right thing to do.

      I do not beleive the law requires it, nor that the Senate can nor should do it.

      But my respect for Franken is increased.
      People make mistakes, those mistakes have consequences.
      Resigning is understanding that.

      As I understand it a the Lt Gov will likely fill his seat to the 2018 election.
      But she will not run in that election.

      Franken can if he chooses run in 2018.
      If he does and is elected this is gone – atleast so long as he keeps his hands to himself.
      Which I think he will be doing.

      It is also my understanding that the Democrats as a whole have decided to adopt a zero tolerance position – that is why Franken was presured out, why conyours is leaving, and why another democratic Rep. is unders serious pressure to resign.

      This is long overdue. Domocrats have serious damage control they need to do here.
      They OWN clinton and nearly all these recent outings are progressives.

      Regardless in the real world – conservative – progressive, get caught loose your job.
      Democrats have also sold themselves as the party of women – yet they lost the vote of white women in 2016 and that would have turned the election.

      If Trump had been running against someone who was not a “slut shamer” Trump likely would have been defeated solely by the womens vote.

      Democrats are starting to grasp that among other reasons they lost 2016 because they are hypocritical about women and people see it.

      The democrats have a unique opportunity here.
      If the purge the few law makers they have with the slightest tent of mysoginy they can make amends and walk back their hypocracy at a very low price – Franken will likely be replaced by a democrat as will Conyers.

      Despite the fact that the overwhelming majority of allegations have been against the left,
      they are in a position to go into the 2018 election with the treatment of women as a millstone they can hang arround the neck of Repuboicans

      I think this is an incredibly astute political choice.

      My complaints are – they are getting off too easy, the price is not high enough, which means we will be back to this all too soon. And why didn’t they do this sooner.

      In 2018 Republicans are likely to have Roy Moore in the Senate and Trump in the whitehouse.
      The treatment of women can become a very strong campaign issue for democrats.

      I wish their commitment was stronger – and by that I do not mean that they will pass more laws for women – we do not need any more laws, and I will likely oppose any such laws.
      But that this really meant a permanent change. That democrats would be pressuring any candidate with credible allegations of sexual harrassment to step down.
      I hope they “walk the walk” more than just 2018.
      I hope there are no more Bill Clinton’s.

      This is a very good move for democrats and very bad for republicans.
      And I have ZERO problems with that.

      More cynically I would note that another reason for pressuring Franken out is fund raising
      aparently Roy Moore has been a HUGE boost to democratic fund raising, but Franken is a millstone.

      There is also talk about a deal regaring Moore – Franken’s resignation for Moore’s expulsion.
      I hope so. I hope Republicans are smart enough to do so.

      But I have also heard the opposite, that if elected Schumer will work to PREVENT Moore from being expelled – specifically because expelling him is good for republicans.

      Anyway we will see.

    • Jay permalink
      December 7, 2017 3:48 pm

      If Franken decides to run in 2018 he should do it as a Republican – he’ll have no problem with Republicans over his past sexual misconduct..

    • Jay permalink
      December 7, 2017 3:33 pm

      From your link:

      “ I think it’s high time for President Trump to do what he should have done a year ago: declassify everything related to the Russian collusion case and the Hillary Clinton email investigation, both of which go to the heart of the Obama administration’s Department of Justice, FBI and, possibly, the White House.”

      I’m all for that happening.
      So why do you suppose tRUMP hasn’t done that, as suggested?
      Huuumm?

      • dhlii permalink
        December 7, 2017 6:39 pm

        I am all for that.

        But I think the chances of it happening are zilch.

        And that has nothing to do with Trump.

        1). Getting things associated with national security fully declassified is damn near impossible.
        Trump could sign an executive order – and 50 years from now it would be declassified.

        We are already seeing DOJ and FBI drag their feet releasing tons of information that HELPS Trump. Why do you think that would go better because NRO asked it or Trump litterally issued an EO.

        The elite state is working hard to protect itself – not Trump.

        Why didn’t Trump order the FBI to release the emails of the coverup of the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting ? We have them now. It has taken multiple court orders and legal battles.

        They are helpful to Trump,. So why did he not just go down to DOJ and demand they be released ?

        Because despite what it says in the constitution Trump does nto control the federal government.

  88. December 7, 2017 4:27 pm

    Well earlier today Al Frankin fell on the Democrats sword and created a huge public relations problem for the GOP (IMHO). He was accused by multiple women of sexual misconduct. He could have stayed and went through the ethics probe. However, he did the right thing to avoid more embarrassment, more legal expense and shelter his party from futher issues withbthe womens movement. And he handed his party the gold ring, especially if Alabama elects Moore.

    Mitch McConnell doesnt have the balls to block him from being seated and Moore does not have the ethics to resign before veing seated, letting the AL governor to pick a replacement.

    I think Moore, added to Trumps sexual misconduct, really gives the Democrats a good start for the 2018 elections, attracting some wavering womens votes.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 7, 2017 6:50 pm

      I think McConnell will expell Moore if he has the votes to do so.
      But that will require alot of democratic votes,
      and the issue will not even come to a vote if McConnell can not win the vote.
      The threshold is 66 votes.

      I think Schumer is deliberately going to hold back enough votes to keep McConnel from trying.

      That is wise politically but morally bankrupt – but who expects morality from Washington ?

      Regardless, Democrats will get more credit for cleaning their house than they deserve.
      But it is stil both the right thing to do and the politically advantageous thing to do.

      It is also a step towards something important they have not done – confronting the fact that they lost, and that is not someone else’s fault, and taken a step towards seeing why the lost and fixing it.

      So Kudos for democrats for doing the right thing – atleast when it is also the politically right thing.

      • December 7, 2017 7:02 pm

        Dave, so McConnell would not bring it to a vote and force democrats to go on record and then have to defendbtheir votes? Same with GOP senators who would vote no to expel.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 8, 2017 12:58 am

        My crystal ball – yours may vary.

        There is ample evidence at this point that McConnell hates Moore and will nearly certainly look to make his life miserable and particularly like to see him gone.

        But he needs 66 votes, that is every republican plus 13 democrats.

        I do not think he will get every republican.
        The fewer republicans the more democrats.

        Schumer is likely to try to give every vulnerable democrat or democrat who needs a boost with woman the opportunity to vote to remove Moore.

        At the same time Schumer actually wants Moore to remain.

        Jones is the best chance at a democrat. If Jones loses to Moore even if Moore is removed the seat will be a republican seat. There is no reason for Schumer to actually want Moore gone.

        He is an albatross to hang arround the neck of Republicans.

        I would personally like to see Moore gone.

        I hope I am wrong.

        I do think democrats have made both the morally and politically correct choice to clear their won ranks and to improve their appeal to women.

        It is not enough to nominate and elect women. It is not enough to pass laws that you think favor women. It is not enough to say the right things.

        Clinton did poorly with white women – because she was a hypocrit. Democrats have a women problem – meaning they are not doing as well as they think they should. Because they are obviously hypocritical.

        I think that this national #metoo moment and the scale of its effect on the left is a wakeup moment for them. Maybe that is wishfull thinking.

        More cynacally, I understand that even if they lose Alabama, that Moore has proved a democratic fund raising bonanza.

        I think that Pelosi and Schumer have looked at the cost of purging Franken, Conyers, …. and it is low. Their seats are highly likely to remain blue in new elections.

        I think Franken would have survived but for this unique sequence of events.

        Anyway that is my look into the political crystal ball.

    • Jay permalink
      December 7, 2017 9:40 pm

      (2nd try to post this.wordPress is pathetic)

      How about that, Ron – I fully agree with your assessment, while still despising Schlump.
      See, we can share views, when you’re on the correct side of the argument ..

      • December 7, 2017 11:47 pm

        “See, we can share views, when you’re on the correct side of the argument .”😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂
        LMAO!!!!!!!!!!

        Did you fall over in a dead faint reading this when you could agree with something I posted?

        Hope your daughters residence made it through the fires. Just showed on the local news the Lilac Community retirement village (close to San Diego) with multiple homes going up in flames. No trees around, no brush, but houses still in flames. You think your safe when you dont live in the hills, but that is not so any more.

    • December 8, 2017 12:59 pm

      Franken didn’t really resign. He said he “would resign in the coming weeks.” If Moore is elected, he will say that he doesn’t have to resign, wait and see….

      Conyers didn’t resign either – he “retired early” and said that he wanted his son to succeed him, as if his district is some sort of hereditary sinecure. (Pat’s favorite word 😉 )

      Political kabuki theater. Neither side cares.

  89. December 7, 2017 8:40 pm

    They keep this up we wont need term limits. They are limiting their terms themselves.
    http://www.yahoo.com/news/rep-trent-franks-texas-resigns-amid-ethics-investigation-000216150–politics.html

    • dhlii permalink
      December 8, 2017 1:02 am

      I would hope there is something more here that discussions with staffers of surrogaacy.

  90. dhlii permalink
    December 8, 2017 4:55 am

    Prof. Haidt excellent as always.

    This is about heterodox academy and its efforts to restore free speach and critical inquiry on college campuses.

    But it is about much more. Haidt cites John Stuart Mill repeatedly.
    Anyone who has not read Mill’s “On Liberty” really should, you have one hand tied behind your back with regard to Critical thinking if you have not.

    Regardless, Haidt repeatedly covers what is wrong.

    Put simply debate is nearly gone from academia, there is little viewpoint diversity and the result is that people all beleive the same thing, and at the same time do not know what they beleive, do not know how to defend their own beleifs, and when called on to do so they resort to anger, insult, and violence.

    “He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that”
    Mill.

  91. dhlii permalink
    December 8, 2017 5:49 am

    Lets see,
    the news of the day.

    One top Mueller attorney represented Ben Rhoads on Ben Ghazi.
    McCabe directed FBI agents not to call Ben Ghazi a “terrorist attack”
    Mirroring the subsequent direction by AG Lynch to call the Clinton investigation a “matter”.
    Another top DOJ attorney met with Steele and Fusion GPS and failed to notify DOJ of this until recently.
    Mueller Lieutenant Aaron Zeble was the Attorney Representing one of the IT Staffers responsible for Clinton’s basement email server.

    Much of this appears to be coming about as a result of an Inspector General Review of the Clinton Email investigation.

    The mere fact that one might be a Clinton supporter working on investigating Trump might be a reason for concern, it is not alone a disqualification. It would likely be impossible to find lawyers to investigate Trump who are not clinton supporters.

    But there is a different standard for Lawyers – the first is a conflict of interests.

    My wife as a criminal defense attorney can not represent the codefendents of a client, or former client, witnesses against a client or former client, the family of a client or former client – anyone where knowledge gained from or relationship to the that former client might be beneficial or predjidicial in representing the new one.
    Nor is that constraint specific to her personal representation, but that of any other attorney in the office, in otherwords she can not work on a case that involves in any way someone from a prior case.
    And that is just the conflict of interest standard.

    The other standard is that of “the appearance of impropriety” that forbids representation where it merely looks as if you might be biased.

    While those standard do not apply to FBI agents like Strzok, they do apply to all of the attorney’s above.

    I would also note that much of this information was not disclosed.
    The contacts with Fusion GPS as an example were not “official contacts” – Comey as an example met with Steele, that is part of the FBI records – meaning Comey’s reported that contact as part of his investigation.

    As the left is so found of noting – what are they hiding ?

    It is not evidence of bias to support Clinton.
    It is compelling evidence of bias to hide your connections to Clinton.

  92. Jay permalink
    December 8, 2017 9:44 am

    Drip Drip Plop!

    • dhlii permalink
      December 8, 2017 3:18 pm

      Of course they do. They discover secrets that are being hidden by governments and business – that is pretty much exactly what intelligence services do.

      Wikileaks is different in that it PUBLISHES those.

      The also act very much like investigative reporters.

      And if you have read much about intelligence work, you would know that there is little that the CIA and NSA come up with that you can not read on CNN.

      Why ? Because Intelligence is much like investigative reporting.

      Is Wikilieaks hostile ?

      The US intelligence community has TWO jobs. The acquire the secrets of others, and to protect our own. Wikileaks sole jobs is to acquire secrets – so of course they are hostile.

      You are completely unable to separate the ends from the means.

      First you justify you own crap because of the ends you hope for, then you condemn wikileaks because of the ends they produce.

      Wikileaks we the darling of the left when they were targetting Bush.
      Now they are an evil hostile foreign counter intelligence agency because they targeted Clinton.

      If you want Wikileaks to “go after” Trump – then dig up dirt on the Trump administration and provide it to them.

      If you want them to “go after” Russia – then dig up dirt on Russia and provide it to them.

      The vast majority of Wikileaks revelations are about CORPORATIONS.
      In other words they serve the left.

      You are incapable of coping with the fact that someone might have values that are different from yours without being evil.

      Wikileaks goal is to expose the secrets that the powerful do not want exposed.
      They are dependent on what they get from leakers and hackers – they do not actively procure information themselves. What they expose depends on what is provided to them.
      They publish information from myriads of sources – many of whihc probably have an agenda

      So What is the truth not true because it sometimes favors an argument you oppose ?

    • dhlii permalink
      December 8, 2017 4:29 pm

      Jay
      You need to keep up.

      Apparently WaPo has now falsified several elements of the Trump Jr. Wikileaks story.

      1). Trump’s Jr. was not actually contacted by Wikileaks – but a DC business man – possibly with ties to Wikileaks.

      2). The CNN story has the dates wrong – Basically a DV businessman provided Trump Jr. with links to the DNC document dump on wikileaks the day AFTER it was made public.

      3). It is now established that the source of the CNN story is a democratic congressmen on the house intelligence committee. That is likely to trigger an ethics investigation.

      Just to be clear WaPo did not falsify the entire story, but demonstrated that the timing is significantly in error, and the connection is more indirect.

      Which makes this far more innocuous.

      Further it makes they new left meme of wikielaks as the bridge between Trump and Russia very close to impossible.

      The story as reported by CNN was not that damaging – the contact was nearly all one way.
      But now it is one way, once removed and after the fact rather than before.

      • Jay permalink
        December 8, 2017 9:22 pm

        Drip drip, no splash.
        You’re right, Dave,
        CNN screwed up the date.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 9, 2017 2:24 am

        Screwing up the date alone entirely transforms the story.

        But it is worse – they also screwed up the source.

        It is really hard to collude after the fact with the wrong person.

  93. Jay permalink
    December 8, 2017 9:54 am

    One ROTTING tRUMP Spoils the Barrel

    • Jay permalink
      December 8, 2017 10:05 am

      For those to GOP enablers too guilty to read through to the column end:

      “The rot afflicting the G.O.P. is comprehensive — moral, intellectual, political and reputational. More and more former Republicans wake up every day and realize: “I’m homeless. I’m politically homeless.””

      And for those still rationalizing the Trumpocalypse, you’re politically MINDLESS.

      • December 8, 2017 1:07 pm

        Only if you’re on “the right side of the argument” Ron!

        My sister is in Studio City in LA. Not a great situation. The barn where she keeps her horse has been destroyed and she’s afraid that the horse is dead.

        Hope all is well with you and your family, Jay.

      • Jay permalink
        December 8, 2017 3:27 pm

        Thanks for the concern, Priscilla – .

        So far my daughter OK, some air quality problems, and ash dropping over their neighborhood, but safe for now.

        Sorry to hear about your sister’s difficulty.

        My wife, who boarded horses here in LA at one time, still has friends who do. She has heard there was a serious loss at one of the Ventura stables, and she is checking online to find out if any of those people lost their horses.

      • December 8, 2017 3:39 pm

        These fires makes all this political crap secondary to the real problems people are facing. These are real losses, just like the hurricanes. All the attention is focused on this now and in 2-3 weeks everything will be back to “normal” with political bitching and arguing, except for the thousands still out of homes in Puerto Rico, Key West, Houston and now central and southern CA. There are people who have still not recovered in North Carolina from hurricanes Floyd and Mathew. Totally forgotten except for themselves remembering

      • dhlii permalink
        December 8, 2017 4:41 pm

        I do not want to downplay the harms that have happened to people.

        But TX has the 2nd highest growth rate in the nation right now,

        As expected Recovery has been far easier for TX.

        Because recovery is not a function of government aide, but of the attitudes of the people.

        I would further note in the real world bad things happen.
        Nature is violent and destructive.
        While some of her wrath can be anticipated and mitigated, all of it can not.

        It is my understanding the Current fires are in Northern California – LA-SF.

        I worked for a company in Southern California for a couple of years and visited for a week every other month.

        I watched the Scrips Ranch Fire which I think was about this size, engulf vast areas arround San Diego.

        The fire destroyed buildings within sight of my companies corporate offices,
        A few miles away half of the multi-million dollar homes in my bosses development were destroyed – while others were intact.

        CA – atleast near SD haws a rainy and dry season, rather than 4 seasons.
        And fires during the dry season are common and can spread and grow large fast.

        In San Diego the building codes are pretty tough regarding fires.
        But you can make a building near non-combustible – stucco with a tile roof,
        and it is still going to be destoryed if the trees close enough are dry and catch fire.

        Regardless, my sympathy to those who are effected by this.

      • December 8, 2017 1:09 pm

        (Barn is not in Studio City, but farther north in Calabasas)

      • December 8, 2017 1:22 pm

        Priscilla, so sorry. It is just hard for me to get my mind understanding how places like horse ranches and stables that have huge cleared areas can catch fire. I understand homes where they use wood shingle and shake roofs that are fire dangers in themselves from embers floating mile, but barns and stables that use metal roofs and sidings are different.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 8, 2017 3:35 pm

        Not a republican – so I do not care much.

        Regardless, The GOP is both good and evil – just as the left.

        I have no idea what Brock’s rotting is refering to – I did not read your article.
        But most of the “rotting” problems with the GOP are also true of Democrats.

        Almost alone here I ma happy about all the revalations of sexual harrassment.

        While I do not want government to do anything about those that do not involve force, and I do not want new laws, I am still glad the maltreatment of women is getting attention and people are getting fired over it.

        And that is the right way to deal with it. It is also the way in which not getting it perfect false allegations are least damaging.

        Mostly what is being exposed is the rot in the democratic party, not that of the GOP.
        That does not mean the GOP does nto have serious problems here.
        But the GOP has not spent the past 4 decades claiming to be holier than thou over women.

        Regardless, out them all – democrats, republicans, Hollywood. I do not care.

        At the moment Democrats appear to be doing a better job of taking the right steps.

        AND I AM HAPPY ABOUT THAT.

        Thy may be doing it mostly or purely as a political calculation – I do nto care, they are doing it.
        Further it is a step in recognition that they lost in 2016 because if who they are.
        Because women understood they are NOT the party of women.
        Because it is not enough to run a female slutshamer to get womens votes.

        This shift by democrats is wise, both politically and morally – and if they benefit from it politically, fine. Good changes should be rewarded.

        Further. hopefully republicans will recognize they have to change too.

        At the same time in other areas the “rot” we are finding is not with the GOP.

        It is increasingly evident that the upper middle management of the Federal government is hopelessly politically corrupt. And that is a democratic problem, not a republican one.

        Several respecatable Republican representatives are now openly speculating that the FBI and DOJ used unverified opposition research provided to them by one political party as the basis to open an investigation and seek warrants to wiretap the other political party.

        There is no possible greater form of corruption in govenrment.
        Targeting your political enemies is what brought nixon down.
        But Nixon did not use the DOJ, FBI, CIA, NSA.

        You want to talk about ROT – that is where the ROT is.

        And every day brings more evidence of more rot.

  94. December 8, 2017 1:10 pm

    Preface: I am not a Moore supporter. I would write in the third party or tighten my sphincter and vote for Jones if forced to vote.

    http://www.bizpacreview.com/2017/12/08/breaking-roy-moore-accuser-admits-yearbook-doctored-573242

    But what does this do to women’s credibility when they have documentation to support a claim and then they doctor the documentation. I believe that she only added the date, but what about the ones on the fence who will be voting.

    Can we not trust anyone? Now, how many of the other claims are also false and provided by Jones supporters that want to see him elected at any cost?

    • dhlii permalink
      December 8, 2017 3:59 pm

      Nelson’s Yearbook signature has been problematic for a long time.
      My understanding is that it is an exact match against signatures from court documents from much later, that we signed by an assistant whose initials were D A and had signing authority for Moore.

      Signing a document for someone else and putting your initials behind it is a very common practice – particularly in law.

      This does nto surprise me

      At the same time there are alot of Moore accusers, and i beleive enough of them.
      Further I have to admit I hate Moore and that makes it easier to beleive he is a perv.

      I am somewhat distrucbed that all these allegations are prior to his marraige.
      People who do what Moore purportedly did, do not stop.

      I also understand that WaPo and Jones team actively sought out dirt on Moore.

      While that requires looking more skeptically at the allegations it does nto discredit them.

      Project Veritas goes after people with a political axe to grind.
      That does not mean we have to throw out their work, just weigh it with reasonable skepticism.
      Exactly the same is True of WaPo.

      I like Bezos, and WaPo. I am glad they are there. Bezos has actively moved WaPo is a more “libertarain” friendly direction. Getting the Volokh conspiracy on WaPo is really really big deal for me. Bezos has provided a large public forum for the most respected libertarian legal scholars in the country.

      Bezos also purged many of the hard left nutcases – like Ezra Klien.

      But WaPo still leans left. And that is fine.
      Just as Fox leans right.

      If Wapo is actively using its resources to target right wing politicians – great.
      That merely requires us to be a bit more skeptical of their results.

      I keep harping on critical thinking

      Critical thinking is NOT about having only neutral voices – that is just nonsense, they do not exist.
      It is about having open debate where all sides of issues are given voice, where biases are not midden, and where each side has the oppoertunity to make their best arguments.

      Where the result is NOT to pick something in the middle,
      but after hearing all the argumets to decide as best we can what the truth is – regardless of which side that favors.

      I constantly hammer Roby demanding his arguments,.

      Mill again
      “He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that.”

      I try hard to know all sides of an argument.
      But I know that the only honest way of testing my own argumets is against the best arguments of those who disagree. The converse is equally true.
      As hard as I might study the arguments of those who differ I can never argue their case as well as they can. Hearing both sides – but presented by someone holding only one, is NOT a real test.

      • December 8, 2017 4:29 pm

        Dave have to get better at making my points clearer. So another try.

        1. Woman accuses Moore.
        2. Opens door for more to accuse.
        3. Woman shows documentation that supports her claims.
        4. Moore has to defend himself.
        5 Popularity tumbles, Jones has good chance to win, only needs a small percentage of undecideds to accomplish that.
        6. Women’s documentation shown to be faked by national news network, unlike other questions being ask.

        So back to my point and I will make this as clear as possible. There will be many who have been undecided and said to others or to themselves:………………
        Alabama undecided voter…….
        ” I wonder if all this information about Moore it true or if it is made up crap”,,,,,,,, “I cant make up my mind about who to vote for because it may be true with all the women saying the same thing”………….”Holy crap, now we find out this woman lied????!!!!!”…………… Bet some of those other bitches lied also”!!!. ….”Bet those damn Democrats found some women to make that stuff up just like the yearbook woman”……. “I’m voting for Moore, can’t believe a damn thing those democrats say”….”And to think I almost fell for their lying crap!!!!!”

      • dhlii permalink
        December 8, 2017 5:21 pm

        I am not disagreeing with you.

        I think your assessment is roughly correct.

        I suspect this fries Jones – the election was close, but Moore was slightly ahead.
        This will cause more people to doubt the accusations.

        Moore will be elected.

        But if we are looking at overall credibility:

        There are many accusations against More – not 1.

        I think the altered yearbook destroys the credibility of this woman.
        Worse it destroys the credibility of other accusers – even though it should not.

        But that is life.

        I actually still MOSTLY beleive this woman. But she made a serious mistake in altering the yearbook.

        My point was we need to learn how to think critically.
        There are requirements for critical thinking.
        One is opening the debate to the best arguments and evidence from all sides.
        We can not make wise decisions when we only hear one side, or when one side is at a disadvantage in presenting their arguments.

        Another is we must listen to arguments from all sides.
        We must learn to use facts logic and reason to evaluate arguments.
        We must do so skeptically – I beleive that is in the Haidt video I linked.

        One of the problems with the post modernism that permeates the left today, is that it actually rejects the core conception of the west that resulted in the modern era – that is basically skeptical analysis. Putting your work/arguments in front of the best minds who are intent and incentivized to find flaws in it.

        Haidt argues that we must learn critical thinking – Mill argues that even the common person must be expected and trusted to think critically.

        I would note this is the reason the Trump Collusion meme fails.
        Because we are each responsible for our own vote.
        Whether we chose as a result of FB adds, or the debates, or the access hollywood video or because we are mysoginists.

        The real claim of the left is that we are too poor at critical thinking to make our own choices,.
        That we succumbed to Russian propganda and therefor must be protected and only fed approved information.

        Following Haidt, if as the left claims people actually were influenced by Russia and that turned the election, the fault is not with Trump or Russia, but with ourselves and our education.
        That we were not taught critical thinking.

        But Critical thinking is antithetical to post-modernism, which is heavily about accepting received wisdom from our betters.

    • December 8, 2017 5:14 pm

      Honestly, the worst thing about media bias is that it calls into question any reporting that has to do with politics.

      Just today, CNN reported that Donald Trump Jr. had received an email, giving him a heads up on the DNC hacked emails, before Wikileaks had published them. The report said that someone had told him that Wikileaks had the emails, and provided him with an encryption code to access them. CNN said that this was the first evidence that Trump’s campaign was working with Wikileaks ~ and by implication ~ the Russians, to hurt Hillary’s campaign COLLUSION!!!

      Except that CNN misreported the date of the email as September 4, 2016. The Washington Post later obtained a copy of the email, and found that the actual date was September 14th not the 4th. CNN issued a brief correction a couple of hours ago.

      So, it was probably a mistake, but how does a giant, worldwide news organization make a mistake like this, report on it all day long, and then, when corrected by another news organization, just go…oops, we made a mistake. So sorry.

      Especially after the “mistake” that ABC made just last week, that got Brian Ross suspended, I have to believe that these media organizations are so hellbent on being the first to report that Trump really, really, really IS guilty of stealing the election that they don’t even bother to confirm the basic details of their reporting, as long as it’s a story that is negative about Trump.

      Does anyone seriously believe that CNN would have made that mistake when reporting a story about Obama?

      So now, that yearbook signature, which Moore has been saying all along was doctored and the accuser was saying was absolutely 100% Moore’s writing is…….well, who the hell knows? She certainly lied, which calls into doubt her whole story. But, the national media never questioned her story, despite Moore calling for a forensic examination of the yearbook. And many voters in Alabama, who have likely made up their minds anyway at this point, have probably decided that all of Moore’s accusers are lying. Can you blame them?

    • Jay permalink
      December 8, 2017 9:41 pm

      “and then they doctor the documentation”

      ‘They’ didn’t doctor the documentation.

      ‘She’ says she added those snippets two years later, after the original inscription. She says she has a girlfriend who can verify that.

      Pulling out my college yearbook I see that I made similar notations next to classmates who signed it, to help in remembering them. (I sure don’t remember most of them now)

      • December 8, 2017 10:45 pm

        Jay when you read my original post, I think you will find I said I thought she only added the date. I wont debate that point with you since your comment seemed to agree.

        I was asking about the undecided voters that are using this as an excuse to overlook ALL the allogations against Moore. How one moronic decision she made in not explaining the date when it was questioned spoiled the bushel of claims to many who will now vote for him.

      • Jay permalink
        December 8, 2017 10:54 pm

        Again, we agree.

      • December 9, 2017 12:08 am

        Jay we need to stop agreeing. We got 4.5 inches of snow today and more coming tonight. We never get snow before January. I think this is the beginning of hell freezing over.

      • dhlii permalink
        December 9, 2017 2:51 am

        It is not the notes that are the issue.

        It is the Roy Moore D.A. Signature that is the serious problem
        Roy Moore never personally signed that way.
        But a Clerk that did not work for him until years after the event did.

  95. December 8, 2017 3:51 pm

    OK did not get much feedback on states rights v federal control on legalized sports betting in states wanting to allow that within their borders. Just Mike and Dave.

    So here is another states rights issue.
    H.R. 38, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017. If you are licensed in one state, you can carry in any state.

    I see both sides of the argument. I understand both sides. If I were carrying, it would be nice to be able to have the weapon with me when traveling if I thought I needed protection. (Risk does not recognize state lines)

    But I have stronger beliefs in state rights, And if they do not want to reciprocate, then the feds should stay the hell out of their business.

    • dhlii permalink
      December 8, 2017 4:48 pm

      We have a great deal of reciprocity between states on the law – because the states have mutually agreed to it – without federal coercion.

      I beleive that some kind of reciprocity regarding gun permits is a good idea – but NOT something the Federal Government should push.

      States shoudl be working together – because it is NOT good for the states to prosecute the residents of other states for acts that are legal in their home.

      At the same time – while I generally oppose gun control laws.
      I am open to the argument that Chicago is different from Texas.

      Reciprocity can leverage both ways.
      I beleive in the past Chicago has tried to sue gun makers for selling guns legally in areas outside of chicago that end up in chicago illegally.

      So I say leave states and cities to work this our on their own.

      That does not mean reciprocity is not a very good idea. Just not one the federal govenrment needs to impose.

    • December 8, 2017 5:25 pm

      I am torn on this one, but I would go with the states rights argument, for the same reason that both of you have stated. I would guess that this bill, if it were to become law, would be immediately challenged in the courts, and would certainly end up being decided by the Supremes.

    • Anonymous permalink
      December 8, 2017 5:27 pm

      Just to be clear Ron, Mike’s feedback is so awesome, so valuable, that when he gives any feedback at all, that is sufficient feedback. So no complaining about not enough feedback on the legalizing gambling question. Ok, moving on to reciprocity, we are already there with driver’s licenses, I don’t know the history on how that reciprocity was achieved, but perhaps the burden and right of a state should be to allowed to actively exclude another state. The default position should be, a permit is a permit in any state, unless Ohio wants to pass a law stating that they refuse to honor Alaska permits for example. I have driven on a highway on the Tennessee\Georgia border, where one moment you are in one state, then the other , then back and forth. They probably already have reciprocity, but I think it would be so wicked to be sent to jail for 10 years for crossing a state line, hardly aware you even crossed it, and slammed for something as serious as a gun charge.

      Mike Hatcher