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Yes, We Have No Collusion

March 27, 2019

 You could almost hear the collective moans emanating from America’s progressive camp. CNN dutifully reported the sad news with a sigh of resignation. Several conservative news sites gleefully noted that Rachel Maddow wept on-air. (She didn’t.) Still, there was no joy in Blueville: mighty Mueller had struck out.

According to Attorney General William Barr, the long-awaited Mueller Report on the Trump administration’s alleged collusion with Russia to win the 2016 election — a report eagerly awaited by millions of Never-Trumpers and, for that matter, millions of regular folks — has yielded no smoking gun, no evidence that implicates any of Trump’s henchpeople (let alone Trump himself).

Here are the exact words of Barr’s memo:

“The Special Counsel’s investigation did not find that the Trump campaign or anyone associated with it conspired or coordinated with Russia in its efforts to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election.”

Give Mueller credit: with an Eagle Scout’s energy and integrity, he shouldered the weighty task of uncovering treachery at the highest level of government. He inspected every nook and cranny, overturned every suspicious-looking rock, and, after two years of exhaustive investigation, had to disappoint millions of Trumpophobes who expected a sizzling indictment of a reviled autocrat.

Am I being too cynical when I observe that countless left-leaning Americans actually hoped that the yellow-maned Chieftain of the Republic was a foreign agent? I don’t think so. I can even understand their perverse sense of anticipation. Proof of collusion would have delegitimized Trump’s upset victory over Hillary Clinton. It most likely would have led to his impeachment and expulsion from office. Even more titillating, it might have condemned the Orange Menace to several years of wearing a matching orange costume in one of our federal penitentiaries. Can you imagine the whooping on MSNBC… on Saturday Night Live… on Colbert and half a dozen other late-night shows aimed at bien-pensant liberals?

Believe me — I’m no fan of our bizarre, spiteful, chronically mendacious commander-in-chief. After he won the presidency, I hoped he might emerge as a much-needed renegade populist, unafraid of upending the money-changers’ tables in the halls of Congress and elsewhere. (Obama was too chronically cautious to challenge the country’s secret alliance of political, corporate and financial establishments.) But most of Trump’s deeds have simply consolidated the power of America’s elites at the expense of the poor working stiffs who still cheer him at his rallies. I wonder how long it will take them to realize that they’ve been royally hornswoggled.

Despite all that, I’m relieved that Trump and his cronies didn’t actively court Russian support to jigger the election. We should all be relieved. It means the vital machinery of our republic wasn’t compromised… that our president wasn’t a Manchurian (or Muscovite) Candidate… that someone as consistently reckless as Trump hadn’t been quite reckless enough to enlist Putin & Co. as co-conspirators in his bid for the presidency.

A few caveats worth considering: We still haven’t seen the full Mueller Report, and we won’t for several weeks. The contents have been filtered through Trump’s justice department in the form of a four-page letter -– presumably with some accuracy, but certainly no substitute for the genuine article. According to Attorney General Barr’s summary, the lack of evidence for collusion doesn’t let Trump off the hook for obstruction of justice. Here’s the mysteriously ambiguous finding as stated in the Barr memo:

“While this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”

The more motivated Trumpophobes have seized on this ambiguity as a stake they can potentially drive through the president’s heart. And of course, they’re eagerly awaiting any new scraps of incriminating information that might emerge from the full Mueller Report. Still, if Trump isn’t suspected of collusion with Russia, he can’t have obstructed justice where there was no crime to conceal. Trump himself claims “total exoneration,” as we might have expected he would.

Other perplexing issues remain outside the scope of the Mueller Report: Why does Trump continually court Putin’s favor, as if the Russian strongman is either a valued confidant or a blackmailer? What about the Trump family’s sprawling international business empire, with its intimations of money-laundering and other disreputable practices? Did Trump commit a crime when he repeatedly denied paying hush money to porn star-opportunist Stormy Daniels? (No, he simply undermined his credibility. Of course, he undermines his credibility every time he lies to the public.) Is Trump an authoritarian and even a fascist? (He comes perilously close, and it’s worth noting that he has Mussolini’s bombastic public mannerisms down pat.) Does he stir racist resentments among his white suburban and rural base? (Yep, even though I’m still not convinced that Trump himself is a foaming-at-the-mouth racist.)

But, at least according to Attorney General Barr’s tantalizing summary of the Mueller Report, the one thing we can’t reasonably accuse Trump of is treason. That’s the good news. The bad news is that, in a hopelessly polarized America, the tribal divisions only stand to deepen.

The right will celebrate Trump’s innocence and rail even more vehemently against the “fake news” issuing from the nation’s liberal press. (And, to be fair, some of it is fake news.) They’ll worship at the altar of Fox (their own fake news) and wear their MAGA hats ever more proudly.

Meanwhile, the frustrated left will look for loopholes, grumble collectively, and eventually focus its own tribal energies on unseating Trump in the 2020 election. Chances are they’ll overlook the candidates with big-tent appeal and pick Trump’s opposite number to run against him: picture a youthful, female person of color with socialist tendencies. It’s probably a good thing for the Democrats that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will still be too young to run.

 

Rick Bayan is founder-editor of The New Moderate. Look for his trilogy of bitterly amusing essay collections for Kindle on Amazon.com. (Just search under “Bayan books.”)

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723 Comments leave one →
  1. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    March 27, 2019 10:47 am

    A very, very good summary Rick. One question: what is a trumpophobe? Are you one? Reading your criticisms of trump one might think you could qualify, depending on who is judging. Is trumpophobe another word for TDS? Who has TDS, where does the obvious criticism of a POTUS who claims to be having a love affair with lil Kim but calls the MSM the enemy of the people, even after one of his fans took that idea seriously enough to send bombs (not entirely real but not just fake either) to CNN? Am I a trumpophobe if I loathe the man? Does someone have a form of TDS if they are consistently oblivious to the unprecedented bad character of 45?

    At least half of my “TDS” comes not from trump himself but as a reaction to the denial that there really is much that is wrong or peculiar with trump, his campaign, his administration from his supporters, the GOP, and conservatives. The emperor has no ^%$#@*& clothes. Jeezum.

    I never thought that trump and putin made any secret deal, (why would they, it was totally unnecessary) so I am not surprised by the conclusion of the Barr summary. I think Barr is a reasonably straight shooter, I do not suspect him of conniving. The report itself will come out, we will see how accurate his synopsis is. If it was a distortion he will take a Lot of heat. Mueller will I am pretty sure, testify and speak for himself at some point.

    Unless I am misunderstanding something, Russian state agents did try to interest the trump team and members of the trump team were interested in meeting them. WTF? That seems to be a fact that is verified in the actual Mueller report. So, is it unhinged for people to see some kind of conspiracy in that? We are not all lawyers, we don’t know the purely legal machinery about the terms collusion and conspiracy, but something obvious stank about the trump campaign vis a vis Russian contacts at the same moment that Russian agents were apparently hacking the DNC and feeding the information to Assange to embarrass clinton and help trump, who himself was sounding an absurdly positive note about putin. Its a victory for trump that not every key member of his campaign has been convicted of crimes related to this? Really?

    Does someone owe trump an apology as has been suggested? trump loudly contradicted US intelligence agencies who all concluded that putin’s people had meddled in the election. His people had layers and layers of contacts with various Russian actors and then concealed that. So, now some of them are in jail. No one owes trump an apology. trump is owed as much of an apology as Chris Christie is by people who suspected that bridgegate ultimately was his responsibility.

    This ain’t over. People can call me what they will, the stink of the trump campaign has not been revealed to be a fake news hoax. It was real stink and it had the smell of burnt borscht.

    And… both parties have gone batshit crazy (&^%$#@* AOC, omar, bernie and Co.) and very bad consequences will be the result in due time.

    • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
      March 27, 2019 10:56 am

      To be clear Rick, the ranting portion of my post (which I guess means all of it) is not directed at you. I just took your excellent essay as a jumping off point into my own incandescent anger that our republic is so obviously going to hell in a handbasket.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 5:22 am

      Wrong and peculiar are not the same.

      Further, all of us are flawed. But all flaws are not equal, nor are all flaws of the same magnitude.

      Whether you call it TDS, or Rick’s term “trumpophobia”.

      I would suggest that it is the false perception that Trumps flaws though numerous are both more numerous and larger than they are.

      Unlike Dennis Prager, I did not presume this Trump/Russia allegation was false because it was made by the left. Despite some important truth in Prager’s observation, it was obviously false because it required beleiving an enormous amount of things that are both idiotic and highly improbable.

      More simply it required being so convinced of Trump’s flaws that you would beleive almost anything bad about him no matter how ludicrous it was.

      That is TDS or trumpophobia.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 5:26 am

      I do not disagree with Barr’s conclusions but Barr is NOT a reasonably straight shooter.
      He is actually a Mueller Crony. He is unfortunately NOT the person needed to clean up the DOJ/FBI

      You need not agree, but can we end this nonsense of presuming that people in government are inherently good. You grasp that Trump is not “inherently good”.

      He has a different “style” than most in government, and he advances a different set of policies. But beyond that there is no good reason to beleive he is less moral than most of those is government and some good reason to beleive he is slightly MORE moral.

      As difficult as that might be for those with TDS to accept.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 5:28 am

      Robby – the conclusion of the US intelligence agencies was much broader and more specific than you are asserting.

      Sorry, Robby, But Trump actually won that.

      We even have Brennan in the press admitting that he must of over estimated the significance of the intelligence he was receiving.

      This was a disaster for the US Intelligence community TOO.

    • March 29, 2019 2:16 pm

      Vermontwhatever: Is that you, Roby/Ian? Sounds like you, and the Vermont connection makes it more convincing. Anyway, you raised an interesting point about Trump Derangement Syndrome. Just as there are legions of left-leaning and even moderate folks who will loathe and resist Trump even on those occasions when he does something praiseworthy, there are legions of right-leaning folks who will support Trump even (and especially) at his most blatantly destructive and ignorant. I guess you could say that both groups suffer from TDS in their own way.

      I think Dave summed up the negative (leftish) TDS when he said that Trumpophobes seem eager to believe anything bad about Trump even when it’s patently false. (Yes, both the left and the right seem to gravitate to their own comforting “fake news.”)

      Am I a Trumpophobe? While I think he’s probably the most dangerous (and certainly the most mendacious) president in our history, I’m willing to concede that his arrogance has paid off in small ways — especially in foreign policy, where his open contempt for the status quo among our allies and our various partnerships has made us rethink America’s overseas obligations. He’s like Alexander the Great when faced with the challenge of untying the Gordian Knot: he just takes his sword and slashes it in half. A good example is his declaration that the Golan Heights belong to Israel and that Jerusalem is that nation’s capital. After 50 years of pointless squabbling, I found that refreshing. As Dr. Johnson would have said, “There’s an end on’t!”

      Of course, the domestic front is another matter: he’s filled his cabinet with the most destructive collection of plutocrats imaginable. Trump himself is a narcissistic bully; I can’t believe some of the malevolently ignorant BS that emanates from that little puckered mouth of his. I don’t think he’s as stupid as he sounds; he’s no intellectual, certainly, but he has a fox’s animal shrewdness. He knows what will play in Jesusland.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 11:26 pm

        “While I think he’s probably the most dangerous (and certainly the most mendacious) president in our history, ”

        I get accused by others here constantly of being a Trumpanzee.
        Primarly because I am not interested in this massive meaningless garbage that is prayed out there as if it has value.

        I admit to being “scared” of Trump – as I have posted before, hist “style” is to seek to create chaos. He is much better able to get what he wants when everyone thinks he is crazy.

        But despite creating chaos, his does not actually do any of the extreme things we are afraid of.

        Obama and Bush were far more lawless.
        Obama and Bush pushed presidential powers much farther than Trump.
        There are only two instances I can think of Trump acting outside of the generally accepted constitutional powers of the president.

        After hemming and hawing he eventually has extended DACA while congress negotiates.
        DACA was good policy – but it is still outside the constitutional powers of the president.
        Congress must do it – not Obama, not Trump.

        The other is this emergency declaration to build the wall. But even there – he telegraphed way ahead what he was going to do. He quite obviously checked his power to do so and found that he could. People from the left who WON cases limiting Obama are saying that the Emergency powers are legal and constitutional.

        I disagree with Trump on a number of policies. But I do not ever expect to agree with a president on everything. Legitimate policy differences are NOT a valid basis for claiming Trump is dangerous or unusual. And to the extent that they are those polices that infringe on individual liberties are dangerous, not those that do not. Trump is heavily biased towards greater individual liberty. That is pretty much NOT dangerous and not a Tyrant.

        I understand that Trump is an unusal personality. That he is even an offensive personality.
        That is a perfectly valid basis for voting. It is NOT a basis for impeachment, it is not a basis for claiming he is especially dangerous. It is NOT a basis for claiming that he is some unusual president.

        Trump is NOT unusual. As I have said repeatedly, he is a C+ president. But he is a C+ president at a time when we have had D presidents for 16 years. We have a C+ economy.
        That looks great compared to a D economy. But this is not the economy of Reagan or Clinton. It is not the average economy of the 20th century.

        Trump is actually a pretty vanilla president with an outrageous personality.

        You need not like him, You need not vote for him.
        But this “the sky is falling” nonsense – THAT is TDS.

        And Sorry Rick – that is NOT currently matched on the right.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 11:50 pm

        “Of course, the domestic front is another matter: he’s filled his cabinet with the most destructive collection of plutocrats imaginable.”

        How are things going on the domestic front ? How is that cabinet doing ?
        Are people being poisoned left and right ? Is the world coming to an end ?

        I am not happy with many of Trump appointments – but I would guess the ones I am unhappy with are those that you like. I am happy with most of Trump’s “plutocrats”. I am happy with people that get in and get the damn job done. I am happy with those slashing government regulations, and getting government out of our way. I am not happy with the washington insiders that Trump has put in some positions. I would rather see an outsider Fup and get fired and replaced, rinse-repeat, until the job gets done.

        “Trump himself is a narcissistic bully; I can’t believe some of the malevolently ignorant BS that emanates from that little puckered mouth of his. I don’t think he’s as stupid as he sounds;”

        So don’t listen. Pres. Clinton totally ended the concept that character counts.
        I care about character alot. I can not vote for someone who does not have it.
        That makes voting very very difficult. I really loath Bill Clinton as a person, and I think his foreign policy was garbage, and resulted in a lot of needless death. But as much as I really really want to I am hard pressed to fault him on economic policy.
        Clinton is an abysmal human being, but he was a good president.

        Thus far Trump is better on foreign policy than Clinton or Obama or Bush. Whether he will match Clinton domestically is still an open question.
        Further for all his many personal flaws he is not as execrable a person as Clinton (either one).

        Bush and Obama had me longing to have Bill Clinton back as a president.
        I almost hate myself for that. A rapist, sexual predator, perjurer, and suborner of perjury was still a much better president that Bush or Obama. I still do not think I can vote for Trump.
        But I sure can’t vote for the “dreggs of society” that the democrats are selling.
        And If I can ignore the flaws of Bill Clinton, Trump’s are inconsequential.

        I think Bush – either one, were decent people. But they were poor presidents. I thought Obama was a decent person – but it just keeps getting harder and harder to ignore the mounting evidence of political corruption – from Fast & Furious through IRSGATE, Bengazi, U1, through to the Clinton Whitewash and the Trump vendetta. Apparently we now have Michelle Obama trying to sanatize Jussie Smollet. I have no problem with not slamming Smollet, but there still must be a consequence. He must walk away with a record.
        George Papadoulis spent 12 nights in jail for inaccurate recollection of the dates of his emails. I think lying about staging a fake hate crime is more serious.

        “he’s no intellectual, certainly, but he has a fox’s animal shrewdness. He knows what will play in Jesusland.”

        Your free to your view of Trump’s intelligence. I am hard pressed to say that his personality is a reflection of what I would call intelligent. At the same time Jordan Peterson who was one of the most cited Clinical Psychologists in the world BEFORE he became this public rock star, and who specialized in intelligence, says Trump has all the hallmarks of a very intelligent person. He has been successful in many different domains. That is NOT luck. I beleive Peterson estimated his IQ at 135. I think it is likely higher. I think what you call animal shrewdness is actually intelligence, and animals BTW are NOT all that shrewd or intelligent. They are just practiced hunters.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        March 30, 2019 9:40 am

        Rick, the thing about foreign policy is that the effects of the trump foreign policy will not be understood for years or decades. People want to believe that the events of the news cycle, here and now, are the consequences of a foreign policy. Really, the consequences of dealing with countries like China, NK, and Russia, that do not have a democratic process and therefore are not limited to pleasing their people today and have long term planning and long terms goals, unlike democracies (which is the definite advantage of authoritarian regimes) are unknown. Some of the consequences of the trump approach may even be beneficial in the long run, or they may be quite destructive. The real effect of trump on NATO will also take time to understand. Is he harming it? In ten or twenty years we will know better.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 2:40 pm

        What do your remarks mean ?

        You say the effects are in the future – you may be correct, but you do not provide any evidence.

        Then you say that we do not know what those effects will be or whether they will be positive or negative.

        So we should do nothing ?

        You do not actually say that either.

        Your argument ultimately says nothing. Aside from the trepedatious tone, it is trivial to conclude that Trump’s long term effect could be dramatically positive.

        For the most part I do not see Trump’s foreign policy as particularly radical or strongly different from prior presidents.

        I do not agree with everything he does – I have never agreed with everything any president does.

        Overall I do not think US foreign policy is that important. The major impact the US has on the world eminates from our people not our government.
        I continue to harp on “the ugly american”, if you have never read it you should.
        It is a short book, and easy to read.

        I am glad Trump has ended the Obama Apology Tour.

        I am glad that Trump has recentered US foreign policy on US interests. Like George Washington, I do not think that lots of foreign entanglements are in our interests.

        I am glad that Trump is getting us out of military meddling in the mideast.
        The mideast is a mess. I do not beleive there are any serious fixes that can come from the outside. We can not inflict democracy or good government on other people, they must do that for themselves. I do not care about the meddling of Russia in the mideast.
        If Russia wishes to waste its blood and treasure messing arround in foriegn countries LET IT,
        Afghanistan did not work out so well for them either.

        I was very happy with Tillerson’s efforts to scale back the State department. I do not know what the friction between Trump and Tillerson was. I think that Trump and Tillerson were effective together.

        Trump has been extremely active in US foreign Policy. But most of that activity – like most of Trump’s activity as president has been in getting out of the mistakes of prior administrations.

        I am all for that.

        The activist areas of Trump foreign policy have been on Trade.
        I think Trump is wrong there. But I do not think that he is any more wrong that prior presidents. Further he has thus far NOT done anything in trade that has large negative consequences. I am not sure given the nature of the global economy today that he can.
        This is not the 1920’s. Tarrifs and trade barriers are just blips that the global economy routes arround. If US Soy farmers can not sell soy to China, those from Brazil do, and US farmers sell to those who bought brazils soy. that is less efficient, but not in some substantial way.

        The other major area would be North Korea. That has been a chaotic rollercoaster ride. At the very least NK has not tested missles in 2 years. There appears to be a good possibility that Trump will lure NK out of its total isolation with the world. That could take a long time.

        In the meantime US relations with the rest of asia have quietly improved.

  2. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    March 27, 2019 11:31 am

    Let the battle of the links begin.

    In essence the synopsis of the Mueller report has not (as yet) affected public perception of the Russian meddling or trumps popularity. The wild celebration and applause by the Senate GOP may have been premature. Will team trump/GOP overplay their hand?

    http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/03/polls-trump-approval-unchanged-mueller-investigation-conclusions-barr-letter.html

  3. March 27, 2019 12:27 pm

    Rick, excellent!
    However, nothing will change going forward.
    Trump supporters will continue to shout “best president ever”( I get those comments on social media multiple times daily).
    Trump haters will continue to shout, ” he must be removed, he is a cancer on the country”
    Trump “neutrals” will continue to ignore politics completely.

    Now put on your thinkking cap for your April post. Watch if Mueller left the door cracked for continued investigations with his obstruction decision.

    And by the way, you might want to check Maddows commentary again. She did not cry, but she came close. Voice changed, face tightened, something like those just before the tears developed. ( Or she was so pissed that she was ready to explode).

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 5:36 am

      Ron.

      I do not know.

      My instincts – and I have to admit that sometimes my read of the political tea leaves is wrong – though I think it has been better than most here. Regardless, I am not going to pretend it is more than instinct, or feelings.

      Regardless, I think this is a watershed event. I think this is more significant than the 2016 election. At the same time I think it is going to take months, possibly years for the full impact to be felt.

      Finally, I HOPE that I am right, because if this is NOT sufficient to cause the left’s version of “the deplorables” – particularly those closer to the center to rethink their faith in the left. we are in very deep shit.

      I do NOT think the big effect of this is some rising tide for Trump or Republicans,
      I think the primary effect is the destruction of the credibility and confidence of the left and those who beleived them.

      That large numbers of people have been lying about Trump, does not make Trump a better person or more truthful.

      But it does make his enemies less credible and less moral.
      And therefore less powerful and less persuasive.

      • March 28, 2019 7:59 pm

        dhlii, your last two sentences sum it up. ]

        On a TDS or trumpophobia; somebody who loses sleep over Trump.

    • March 29, 2019 2:22 pm

      Ron: You nailed it re Trump’s supporters and haters. Nothing will change their minds. As for Maddow, I must have missed the clip where she almost broke down. In the clips I saw, she seemed surprisingly composed.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 11:57 pm

        Does it matter if Maddow broke down ?

        What I care about regarding the media is whether they have learned anything.
        Whether they are going to do anything to restore my trust in them.

        I can make things work either way. With enough voices, someone is speaking the truth.

        As I think of it Trump’s “enemy of the people” remark is in error. More accurate would be “enemy of the truth”. That I would like to see fixed.

        When infowars has more credibility than New York Times – and right now they do, there is a serious problem. And the problem is NOT with infowars.

        I want a press that speaks TRUTH to power. But the operative word is still TRUTH.

  4. Jay permalink
    March 27, 2019 4:42 pm

    Rick, you may want to check out this link to a Twitter thread by Will Wilkinson, who I would describe as a ‘moderate libertarian’ – he currently serves as V.P of Policy at the Niskanen Center, a libertarian-friendly D.C. think tank.

    This is his take on Barr & Trump etc. His conclusions match my own views on the release of the Barr synopsis of Mueller’s investigation. Like me, he senses more ominous subterranean rumblings to it by “Trump’s reality-bending propaganda machine.”

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 5:39 am

      Can We quit selling Niskanen as Libertarain ?

      I am happy to use a very very broad definition of libertarian.
      They may not be raving left wing nuts,
      and they may have a few libertarain policies,
      but they are not libertarian.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 5:43 am

      Wilkson’s argument is actually false.

      The report CAN totally exonerate Trump AND those creating it CAN be ethically and morally compromised.

      The most compelling exoneration that you can ever get is that of those who would beleive almost anything evil about you who while still frothing and fuming that you are an evil person are still compelled by the fact to admit, that that claims against you are wrong.

      This is like Jerry Falwell concluding that Bill Clinton did not committ an impeachable offense.

    • March 29, 2019 2:28 pm

      Jay: I see Wilkinson’s logic, but I didn’t get the impression that Trump’s people were shouting that the report was ethically compromised. (Maybe they did, but I wasn’t aware of it.)

      Of course, even Barr’s summary includes that ambiguous statement about no charges / no exoneration. Meanwhile, Trumpophobes are yelling, “We need to see the full report” as if the administration is deliberately hiding it from us. It will be released in a few weeks — even Trump wants it released. I’m not sure I see how the delay affects anything.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 12:24 am

        Rick;

        THIS MOMENT should make it absolutely clear that almost all of us have completely different standards for republicans than democrats.

        We now KNOW that Lynch told Comey to whitewash Clinton, and Comey passed that on.
        It is probable that Obama told Lynch to do so.

        AG Holder bragged openly about protecting Obama and tanking all investigations.

        Yet even you have jumped to the conclusion that Barr might be lying.

        I honestly do not like Barr. I think he was a mistake. We have a cesspool in several areas of government – DOJ/FBI at the time. The house needs cleaned – and the cleaning needs to go past DOJ/FBI. At a minimum many people need FIRED. But atleast a few need to go to jail for this. Public consequences are the disincentive to future bad conduct.

        Is there anyone who thinks That Trump should have remained president for more than a minute if there was ACTUAL evidence of any effort to rig the election ?
        No one. Provide ACTUAL evidence – that the orange flash, can be fitted for an orange jumpsuit. But you do not convert something into a fact by repeating it over and over.

        I find this nonsense over Barr’s letter and the Mueller report just annoying.

        Sure we should see as much as possible. But what are you expecting to see ?
        Do you honestly expect to discover that Barr is lying ? Do you really expect that Mueller has been corrupted by Trump ? Or that he is so incompetent that he missed something significant ?

        I expect Mueller’s actual report to be full of innuendo, to be mean and nasty, to lash out at Trump and everyone else who has criticized him. I expect absolutely zero evidence that we have not all already seen over and over. We have had 3 years of allegations. They have all proven false. It did not take much or Ron’s valued “common sense” at the start of this to grasp it was going nowhere. Forget everything else to buy this Trump/Russia nonsense, you have to beleive that Trump is better than the CIA and MI6 and the FBI at spycraft, and at the same time braindead stupid. He has to have managed to engage in a conspiracy with the russians without leaving any actual fingerprints, He has to have inspired loyalty in an army of people, most of whom did not meet him until 2016, such that they were all willing to fall on their swords. You have to beleive that Cohen – who has betrayed him and is calling Trump all kinds of vile names either actually knew nothing or is still secretly loyal to Trump. And you have to beleive that Trump has concocted this gigantic difficult dangerous operation to get a couple of million in FB adds, rather than kick in a couple of million of his own funds to buy actually effective adds.

        The underlying claim has NEVER made sense. But we have wasted 3 years and the time of most americans over a ludicrous hypothesis that made no sense on day one.

        Did Trump payoff Daniels ? Of Course he did. He also bought the silence off his doorman whose stories we know are false – that Trump story makes sense.

        Is Trump “laundering money for the Russians” ? No!!! He is buying and selling real-estate to Russians and south americans and anyone else who will pay big bucks for the properties he is selling. That is not “money laundering” it is business. Is it possible that some of these people are criminals ? How much of the money that McDonalds takes in each day is drug money ? All of it. All US money today tests positive for drugs.
        When I contract with someone for a job, I do my due dilligence. I check to make sure they are going to be in business tomorow, that they have enough money, that the have a reputation for paying. I do not check to see if they are wife beaters, or child molesters or homophobes.
        I am selling a service. I am not the moral judge of the world.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 12:38 am

        My point on the Mueller report is sure – lets get it out there.
        Rush, don’t.

        For anyone with Ron’s “common Sense” it will be anti-climactic. It is not going to say anything we do not already know. It NEVER was.

        The Mueller report is significant in only a few ways.
        1). It hopefully ENDS this garbage that some Republican Malfeasance cost Clinton an election that was rightfully hers.
        2). Just maybe it is the needle that burst the lunatic outrage bubble we have been in the past 2 years – which MUST burst eventually and will be very bad for the left the longer it takes.
        3). It MIGHT Persuade people without “common sense” that this is over, that Russia did not dupe anyone, but the left and the media have.

        If it Takes reading the actual report to persuade you of a truth that is plain as day – great.
        I am prepared to sacrifice all the normal rules of criminal procedure, privacy, etc. if that is what it takes to get those who were unable to understand they whole thing was a “witch hunt” from day one.

        At the same time – to those of you who are already micro-parsing all of this and hoping that something in the Mueller report will allow you to keep going.
        Please get some common sense. No matter what spin gets put ontop of the spin that I am sure Mueller has in his report, you can not spin this into a criminal conspiracy.
        Not because Mueller says you can’t. But because to get to a criminal conspiracy requires a long list of high;y improbable – even stupid things to be true.

        When this report finally comes out, I fully expect many – even here to be making lunatic arguments like – “there is still 2 days in September, that Micheal Cohen could have secretly gone to prague”.

        It is not possible to use facts, logic, reason to overcome religious zealotry.

  5. Jay permalink
    March 27, 2019 4:57 pm

    And the beat goes on…

    “WASHINGTON — Robert Mueller’s federal grand jury is continuing its work even though the special counsel has submitted his final report to Attorney General William Barr, a government prosecutor said Wednesday.

    Assistant U.S. Attorney David Goodhand made the admission during a court hearing in Washington about unsealing new details in a mysterious case involving an unidentified foreign company swept up in Mueller’s probe.

    U.S. District Chief Judge Beryl Howell asked Goodhand if the grand jury had concluded their investigation, given the fact that Mueller has completed his inquiry.

    “No,” Goodhand said in response. “I can say it’s continuing robustly.”“

    -NBCNEWS.com

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 5:43 am

      Hop springs eternal.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 28, 2019 5:44 am

        hope, not hop

  6. Jay permalink
    March 27, 2019 5:06 pm

    Trump.. what a deal-maker… for the French.

    “French aircraft manufacturer Airbus has announced a commitment from China’s state-run airlines to purchase 300 planes. The deal was signed during a state visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping — a symbolic gesture experts said expressed more about China’s global ambitions and its fractious U.S. trade relationship than about the troubles plaguing Airbus rival Boeing.

    “It’s impossible to divorce politics from anything China does when it comes to aviation and aerospace,” said Jon Ostrower, editor-in-chief of aviation-industry publication The Air Current.” -NBCNEWS.com

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 5:45 am

      And if the Airbus planes are made in Lousianna ?

      • Jay permalink
        March 28, 2019 10:27 am

        Let’s see, will Atlanta will get any of the China work?
        Doubtful, as the Airbus US production facility is located in Mobile, Alabama.

        Humm, which of these Airbus assembly locations is likely to be used to assemble planes for CHINA?

        “Final Airbus assembly production is based at Toulouse, France; Hamburg, Germany; Seville, Spain; Tianjin, China, and Mobile, Alabama, United States.”

        Don’t rush.. think it through… need a hint? (aircraft assembled at Mobile is sold to the US market)

      • dhlii permalink
        March 28, 2019 4:31 pm

        My point – which you completely MISSED – was that you are making assumptions about something you do not know.

        Atlanta is a Boeing R&D center.

        Regardless, if Boeing did not want to lose these contracts – it should not have screwed up.
        That is not on Trump.

        At the same time – if you want me to say that the FAA (and Trump) should stay out of this. Let the airlines and passengers decide if they want to fly on a 737MAX.

        But you usually disagree on that.
        Further, I would guess that if Obama had grounded the 737MAX – which it is near certain he would have – you would be defending him.

        The actions of government rarely offend you – unless they involve Trump.

        You have no credibility.

        Addressing your “facts”.
        Wow China wants final assembly of its planes in China. Surprise surprise.
        Ron and many others here want atleast final assembly of anything bought in the US in the US.

        I want government out of that choice.

        All other things equal – I will buy local.
        But all other things are rarely equal.

        Neither you, nor Ron, nor Priscilla should be obligated to follow my lead, nor I yours.

        When you say US jobs are lost to foreign production.

        Yes, Because CONSUMERS – including american consumers decided to buy the foreign product, not the domestically produced one. THEY decided “all things were not equal”.
        US producers and their workers need to do what it takes to assure that US consumers FREELY pick their product, bot because of tarriffs of government mandates.

  7. dduck12 permalink
    March 27, 2019 10:43 pm

    Rick, I also was GLAD that the report said no collision, the opposite would have been a disaster for the country, IMHO. Obstruction is still up in the air, and it can, I think, be separate from the thing you are trying to obstruct, as it goes against the investigative process. Maybe a real lawyer, not one our armchair variety might know.
    Anyway, we may need some clarification/information from Mueller either from the report or in closed door testimony. Please keep this circus from being a three ring one to a sideshow.

    Anderson Cooper had Steve Bannon on tonight. I think SB is a very dangerous person because he can sound normal and is very sharp, in contrast opposed to Trump.
    Anyway, AC tried to pin the Russian interference on Trump’s campaign. and I had to laugh when SB said it was at “the MARGINALLA” (if there is such a word) of the campaign.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 5:51 am

      You are legally correct that it is in theory possible to obstruct justice when there is no underlying crime.

      If you read Barr’s analysis, it went much further than that.
      There are 3 REQUIRED elements of the crime of obstruction that were all missing from all of Muellers possible claims of obstruction.

      When a required element is missing the crime was not committed AS A MATTER OF LAW.
      Even in a criminal trial – before the case goes to a jury, the judge can be asked by the defense to preclude consideration by the jury of charges where the prosecution has not presented evidence of all elements.

      The standard of review is low (or the bar is high), almost any evidence of each element is sufficient to put the case to a jury, but the absence of evidence of ONE required element will result and a good judge barring that charge from reaching a jury.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 6:12 am

      While you are legaly correct – there is a difference between what is technically correct, and what is possible, as well as what the law SHOULD be.

      Republicans have been fighting to REQUIRE criminal intent in all federal crimes EXCEPT those that specifically preclude it. That has been the norm for law for centuries.

      While you do not have to intend to commit a specific crime to be guilty, you DO (or should) have to intend to do wrong. AND you do have to have intended to do what you did that was wrong.

      Separately, it is nearly impossible to get a conviction for an actual crime when the jury beleives the conduct is reasonable.

      I just finished the Netflix serious on the Bobbitts.
      Numerous people pointed out that Lorena just did not meet the requirements of Virginia’s “temporary insanity” defense. While her testimony was incredibly compelling and supported by many many other witnesses, “Technically” she was guilty as charged. She did it, she knew she did it, she was not in the thral of an “irresitable impulse”.
      What is more accurate would be, that she had a reasonable beleif that the law was NOT going to protect her, and that if she did nothing, she would be raped and possibly murdered at some time in the future. But that is NOT a permissible criminal defense.

      The Bobbit jury I doubt “beleived” the irresistable impulse claim, but they beleived that she should not be punished for what she did.

      This is called Jury nullification. It is a very important part of our legal system – one that dates back to the colonial era.

      Oddly the english frothed and fumed, but they allowed colonial lawyers to ask juries to nullify english law. While modern courts will not allow mentions of Jury nullifaction anywhere near a courthouse. You can go to jail for jury tampering for mentioning it today.

      This is WRONG. Our laws are not perfect and do not fit every situation perfectly.

      Juries should not only be free, but KNOW they are free to conclude that a defendant violated the letter of the law, but should not be held criminally culpable.
      If that is not the case – we can replace Juries with robots.

      Lastly, I am very hard pressed to think of any circumstance were you should EVER be prosecuted for a nonviolent action that is a response to the illegitimate actions of authorities.

      As an example – the police attempt to break down a door without a warrant and without probable cause. You refuse to allow them to pass. The push you over and handcuff you and arrest you. To re-iterate – there is NO warrant, and no probable cause, and the police are entering property they have no right to enter.

      The facts and the law as it should be is “the police are committing the crime of breaking and entering and your action is lawful” The state of the current law is that refusing the orders of a police officer is a crime – whether the order of the officer is legitimate or not.
      BTW this is a real case, and the party in question LOST before the PA supreme Court, and went to jail.

      Otherwise Innocent people attempting to non-violently thwart the lawless actions of law enforcement should NEVER face criminal charges.

    • March 29, 2019 12:04 pm

      dduck, I think the continued debate based on incomplete information is much worse than an impeachment hearing. We survived Nixon and Clinton. Both came to a conclusion. Right now there is no conclusion on the horizon based on what has been released.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 6:34 pm

        No Ron.

        We had a “conclusion” in Nov. 2016. Voters decided that Trump was the lessor evil.

        The lunatic left refused to accept that – that is the entire basis for the current deep divide.

        Despite the problems. I am for Transparency here.
        But it will change little.
        The lunatics will continue to beleive, no matter what.

        There is not enough evidence to persuade a true beleiver.

    • March 29, 2019 2:44 pm

      dduck: Yes, in contrast to those who actually wanted evidence that our president was a foreign agent, we were relieved that there was no conclusive evidence of collusion. As for Bannon (interesting character — the classic intelligent villain), his comment hints that there was some contact between Trump and the Russians, which I don’t doubt. (After all, Trump had been negotiating to build a Trump Tower in Moscow.) The key is whether there was a deal between Trump and Russia to tilt the election in his favor, and it looks as if there wasn’t.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 12:46 am

        Rick;

        Sorry, there was no contact between the Russian government and the Trump campaign.

        The very fact that Trump Jr. met with Natalia actually proves that.

        There is actually substantial evidence – most of which has gotten little air, that the trump campaign CRUSHED repeated efforts by subordinates to make contact with Russia.

        Contact with Russia would NOT be improper had it actually occured – Trump met with the Mexican president during the election. Secret contact would be very suspicious.

        As to Trump Tower Moscow – So ? If some Russian oligarch was trying to build a hotel in NYC do you think that Obama would have been involved ?

        Trump had LOTS of contacts in Russia – Pop Starts, and people associated with the Miss Universe contest. Just as Hillary had contacts through Clinton Foundation, the U1 deal and Bill’s paid speeches. Of those the “contacts” closest to the actual russian govenrment were Clinton’s not Trump’s.

        What does it take to get rid of the idiot presumption that everything business related is proof of corruption ?

  8. dduck12 permalink
    March 27, 2019 10:46 pm

    More sleazy Trump appointees:
    “Interior Nominee Intervened to Block Report on Endangered Species”
    “Their analysis found that two of the pesticides, malathion and chlorpyrifos, were so toxic that they “jeopardize the continued existence” of more than 1,200 endangered birds, fish and other animals and plants, a conclusion that could lead to tighter restrictions on use of the chemicals”.
    “But just before the team planned to make its findings public in November 2017, something unexpected happened: Top political appointees of the Interior Department, which oversees the Fish and Wildlife Service, blocked the release and set in motion a new process intended to apply a much narrower standard to determine the risks from the pesticides.”
    “Before he joined the Trump administration, Mr. Bernhardt worked as a lawyer and lobbyist representing clients including the oil and gas industry. He was frequently paid to challenge endangered species-related matters, including one involving a tiny silvery blue fish called the delta smelt whose protection by the federal government has resulted in limits on water use by California farmers.”
    “The pesticides, particularly chlorpyrifos and malathion, are “high toxicity” for all animals, and their effect on endangered species would be both direct and indirect, via contamination of food sources, for example, the staff concluded. The E.P.A. has separately considered banning chlorpyrifos because of potential harm to humans.”

    • March 29, 2019 2:45 pm

      This is the kind of thing I find unforgivable about the Trump administration: sacrificing the environment for the interests of big corporations.

      • March 29, 2019 4:48 pm

        Do we know enough about these yet to decide to severely restrict or ban these like DDT. We know malathion is toxic to bees, fish and kther wild life. But malathion is used for mosquito control. I was used to control west nile virus and medaterian fruit fly.

        So should we ban it, should we restrict farmers that have land on a river from using it and reduce agricultural output or should we have other controls? Are there alternatives to thses products and if so why arnt farmers and cities using them?

        I dont know. All I see is the New Trumphater Times publishing an article that I cant read attacking this decision. When searching on these products, the best I get is alot of scienftific data that I dont understand and the Federal Register requesting comments on their use.

        So if you know the answers to my questions, please respond so I can make a decision.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 2:23 am

        “DDT, sensationalized by Rachel Carson in 1962. Said to cause hepatitis.
        Discontinued in U.S. in 1972. Known then to be safe to humans (caused death only if
        eaten like pancakes). Some damage to wildlife under special conditions.
        With the aid of DDT, “India had brought the number of malaria cases down from the
        estimated 75 million in 1951 to about 50,000 in 1961. Sri Lanka…reduced malaria from
        about three million cases after World War II to just 29 in 1964”. Then as the use of
        DDT went down, “Endemic malaria returned to India like the turnaround of a tide”. By
        1977 “the number of cases reached at least 30 million and perhaps 50 million”.

        In 1971, amidst the fight that led to the banning of DDT in 1972, the president of
        the National Academy of Science – distinguished biologist Philip Handler – said “DDT
        is the greatest chemical that has ever been discovered”. Commission after commission,
        top expert after top Nobel prize-winning expert, has given DDT a clean bill of health. ”

        There is virtually no claim about DDT that has survived long term scrutiny.
        But like myriads of similar false claims and Malthusian scares, few people know that.
        We often act capriciously without real knowledge based on crap science that is later refuted and having done so continue blindly without regard for our error.

        The only purported evidence against DDT was the purported thinning of the shells of raptors.
        The thinning was a fact, any correlation to DDT was speculative. The thinning trend predated the use of DDT, and ultimately reversed for reasons we do not know.

        BTW much the same has happened with regard to heart disease. And Like DDT much (not all) of what we beleive correlates to heart disease does not, it si not supported by actual facts.

        Just to be clear almost every malthusian claim – such as that of DDT that you think you know to be true, demonstrably isn’t. Hence there is enormous truth to Dennis Pager’s editorial that you can take the position that ANYTHING the left asserts is a LIE with little risk to your own actual integrity.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 4:46 am

        “Should we ….”

        As an individual – make your own choices.
        As a voluntary group – a church, the rotary club, … – make your own choices.

        As a government by force – the default answer should ALWAYS be no!.

        Default is NOT the same as always.

        When can we morally use force ?

        We can use force in response to force initiated by others. The defense of self, the defense of others and the defense of ones property are all near universally accepted justifications for the use of force. To be clear they are not carte blanche and even they have limitations. You may not kill the neighbor who pisses on your daffodils as an example.
        In the context of government this is the fundimental justification for all criminal law.
        If you rape someone, it is reasonable to expect that government – men with guns will come and take your freedom. This is not carte blanche either – we expect government to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you actually used force unjustifiably against another before taking away their freedom. Individuals can usually justifiably use force only in response to an immediate threat – so long as the rule of law exists. Government is permitted – after due process to use force in response to past crimes.

        Individually we can NOT use actual force to compel someone else to keep an agreement. But we can call on government to do so. Again there is a due process requirement, but if that is met, we can expect government to compel another to keep an agreement they made with us. This is the foundation of most civil and contracts law. And again it is fundimental to the rule of law.

        Individually we can NOT use actual force to to make us whole after they have harmed us.
        If your neighbor runs over your mailbox by accident, you can not go to his home with a gun and demand payment for a new mailbox.
        But we can call on government to do so. Again there is a due process requirement, but if that is met we can expect government to compel another to make us whole to the extent possible after they have harmed us. This is the foundation of torts law. And again it is fundimental to the rule of law.

        These are ONE aspect of the constraints on the justifiable use of force.

        But they are not the only constraints.
        When government restricts our freedom, the burden of proof rests with the government – not us.
        It must prove that whatever it seeks to do the need is compelling.
        Government can not restrict our freedom just because someone thinks is might be a good idea.
        It must prove that its restriction is necessary, that absent the restriction the consequences would be dire.
        It must prove that only government action is capable of accomplishing the necescary objective.
        It must prove that the means that government is using to accomplish that goal is the least infringing means possible. Government may not as an example execute people to punish shoplifiting.
        It must prove that the means that government is using are effective – even if the justification is compelling, failure to acheive it by the means chosen means the law is unjustified.

        There are likely other criteria – but these will do for a start.

        It is unlikely that most Criminal law, contracts law or tort law would have have difficulty achieving moral justification.

        I would further note that the necesity of government action and the means of government action are independent.

        You used DDT as an example. If your neighbor is putting anything into the water supply and causing harm to you or others – government action is clearly warranted.
        Obviously actual harm must be proven. But given that is met, some kind of govenrment action is justified. But justification for some action is not justification for any action.
        With some toxin in the water supply there are myriads of possible government actions and all are NOT justified. Resolving the issue through torts is easily justified, Given that you can prove actual harm government can demand that the “polluter” make you whole.
        At the other extreme if the harm is large and immediate – then the act would be a crime.

        What is not justified is banning something particularly when the harm is not clear.
        Generally we know EXACTLY what the harm is of something that has already occured.

        If your neighbor dumps DDT in the water and there is never any harm from that – there is no crime, and there is no tort. If they dump cyanide in the water and people die or are severely injured that is a crime.

        Whether the conduct is address through crimes or torts, our incentive to not do bad things is that we will be punished. If we deliberately or recklessly injure others – we will lose our freedom or possibly even our lives. If we injure others unintentionally, we will lose sufficient of our property to make them whole, as well as possible punative damages.

        I would note that with tort and criminal law – there is not much need for specificity.
        We do not as an example have to have laws that preclude you from murdering someone with a teddy bear. Murder – deliberate actions that cause the death of another are a crime, no matter what the method. Nor do we proactively ban shovels because one use of them is hitting people over the head and killing them.

        In the unlikely event that it is EVER permissible for the law to be a priori i.e. to prohibit something because it MIGHT cause harm in the future, that would require the law to be highly specific. A posteriori law there is no debate over harm – because the harm has occurred, We do not need to be narrow, because the harm is self-evident.

        With a priori law – all regulation, we need to be certain that what we do is the least restrictive of liberty possible. We need to be sure that in hopefully preventing some harm, we are not also precluding some benefits. That is nearly impossible to do.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 1:12 am

        No Rick it is NOT.

        I would strongly suggest reading Julian Simon’s “The Ultimate Resource II”
        It is aparently now available online for free.
        It is a very very large book. There are many chapters each addressing one or another bit of Malthusian nonsense.
        http://www.juliansimon.com/writings/Ultimate_Resource/

        But let me summarize the entire book simply:

        If you are told the world is going to hell. Whoever is saying that is either a liar or a dupe.
        It is not. It does not matter what the specific claim.
        There is absolutely nothing about the human condition that is in decline anywhere in the world over period longer than ten years EXCEPT in socialist countries.
        NOTHING – not the environment, not fossil fuels, not pesticides, not standard of living NOTHING.
        AGAIN anyone saying otherwise is a LIAR or a DUPE.

        I do not want to try to get into a detailed examination of endangered species issues.
        But I will make a very very broad statement of FACT.
        Get rid of ALL environmental rules, and the world will not go to hell. In fact it will not even get worse. It will continue to improve.
        Absolutely some bad things will continue to happen. Some people will even behave unscrupulously. But all of that is going to happen anyway – but not to an extent that will come close to reversing the strong positive trends.

        If Trump’s people are slashing and burning regulations MORE POWER TO THEM.

        Are people dying left and right ?

        The ONLY role that govenrment plays in the endless improvement of the human condition is in setting the most fundimental rules for human interaction.

        You may not use violence to gain advantage.
        If you make an agreement you must keep it.
        If your conduct harms another, you must make them whole.

        That is it.

        With respect to “endangered species”.
        Should we bring back the sabertooth tiger ?

        Malaria used to be commonplace in much of the world – even the US, places like Ohio.
        Now it exists only in a few parts of the world.
        We have near exterminated it, and killed of a substantial portion of the world mosquito population.

        Should we undo that ?

        Going the opposite direction, Dogs, Cats, Cows, Chickens, would not exist – atleast not as they do today or in the numbers they do today but for humans.

        Pesticides are toxic poisons. They are DELIBERATETLY created to kill insects.
        We would prefer than they do not kill humans and mostly are not harmful to other plants and animals we do not intend to kill. But they are still supposed to kill.

        If they do not kill things – Humans STARVE.

        Until very recently we did not have the ability to target only one organism easily.
        During the recent outbreak of Zika, I learned that the state of genetics is such that we can engineer the global extinction of the Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitos and we could do so in a few months. Completely wiping Zika off the face of the earth, just as we did with Small Pox, Further we could do the same with Malaria, and all the diseases born by the Tstse fly.

        Should we ? Geneticly enginered extincions of very targeted species is something that should be contemplated carefully, At the same time, it is likely LESS damaging that the use of pesticides.

        Nor should we pretend we have not been doing something close to that for centuries.
        The predecessors for nearly all grains – wheat, corn barley are gone. They no longer exist anywhere on the planet. We engineers something better over the course of thouasands of years and it has replaced the other. Nature BTW does exactly the same thing, completely without our help all the time. Dinosaurs do not roam the earth and humans had nothing to do with that.

  9. dhlii permalink
    March 28, 2019 4:06 am

    Pretty good Rick.

    I would note:

    Barr quoting Mueller’s opinion on “exoneration” is NOT an endorsement of Mueller’s opinion. In fact this “exonerates” Trump to the extent that it is EVER possible to prove a negative.

    As you noted – Mueller looked under every rock, every pebble.
    I would further note that Mueller is NOT an eagle scout of someone for great integrity.

    He is a pit bull – not necescarily a partisan one. But he has in every investigation he has ever been in absolutely sought to destroy whoever he was investigating, by whatever means necescary whether that is Richard Jewel, or Steven Hatfill or Bruce Ivens – or a host of other Mueller victims – including those he has terrorised in the past 2 years.

    There is a huge difference between being vindicated by a neutral party – even a boy scout – there is always the assumption that people of integrity can miss something.

    When you have someone who persued every single lead – no matter how ludicrous or stupid or how far he had to warp the law to do so, When you have someone who had clearly prejudged the results and STILL could not find the evidence that would persuade him.
    That is about as much exoneration as you can possibly get in the world today.

    To a VERY SMALL extent this was necescary – and it was necescary in this particularly way.
    The left is entirely unhinged, and they only way that they were ever going to beleive that they had lost this election legitimately was to have the most ferocious, biased investigation by a pit bull possible. And STILL we already have some on the left ranting about a coverup.

    At the very same time as this was “necescary’ it was also WRONG. Are we incapable of understanding not only how ludicrously stupid the premise of this investigation was, and how evil it is to allow anyone with an agenda to feed DOJ/FBI garbage and get them to investigate their enemies without DOJ/FBI going to the trouble to test the credibility of the allegations first ? It is irrelevant whether this was Clinton selling dirt on Trump of Walmart selling dirt on Amazon. We can not allow the investigative power of the federal government to be weaponized. Not by those in government, not by those outside.

    We must find a better way to deal with this in the future.

    • March 28, 2019 8:07 pm

      Hera him! Hear him!

    • March 29, 2019 2:49 pm

      Dave: Good points about the investigation itself as a case of the Trump resistance weaponizing the government to do its bidding. In the end, it’s probably a net positive, because the accusations of collusion would have hung in the air for the rest of Trump’s presidency.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 1:55 am

        No Rick it is NOT a good thing.

        You do not get to tell a lie that triggered an investigation of someone else and they claim that the investigation was a good thing – because otherwise no one would have know the lie was a lie.

        There are infinite numbers of ways to discredit this.

        This nonsense was CREATED by the left, It was foist on us by Government and then media, and it was never the truth. It would have died quickly on its own but for large numbers of leftist loons selling us claims that defy common sense.

        Here is an editorial by Dennis Prager than is both excellent and disturbing.

        https://townhall.com/columnists/dennisprager/2019/03/26/assume-the-left-lies-and-you-will-discover-the-truth-reflections-on-the-trumprussia-collusion-lie-n2543732

        I find Prager’s argument extremely disturbing.
        I am very very reluctant to accept the premise that absolutely everything emanating from a specific political ideology can be presumed without testing to be false.

        At the same time Prager’s argument – atleast as a rule of thumb has a great deal of truth to it.

        Further though Prager only touch’s lightly on that, there is actually a very solid reason for his conclusion.
        Prager hints at the reason when early on he distinguishes between liberalism, and leftism.

        It is near impossible to engage anyone – here or elsewhere in discussions of philosophy.
        At the same time the western liberal philosophy – that is the philosophy of free will, of individual liberty, of Kant’s catagorical imperative – which has roots atleast as far back as the Torah and has evolved through Greece, Italy, Europe and england to the US, is responsible for the unbeleivable prosperity of the world today. Without it life is “nasty, brutish and short”.

        When anyone here rejects something because “oh, that is just ideology” – that is incredibly stupid. Our principles, and the values that flow from them are core to everything we are.
        All the good and bad of our society emanates from those principles.

        Those things that fail in practice tend also to fail as philosophy, and visa versa.

        Many of us here are old enough to remember the 60’s. Most of the left in the 60’s were “liberal” of sorts. But the 60’s was also the birth of a new ideology – or more accurately a retread of an old one. Post Modernism was born as a re-imagining of Communism and socialism with assorted group identity and conflict as a replacement for class struggle.
        That change is pure evil, it pretty much assures exactly the evil conflicts we have today.
        But another facet of post modernism was the rejection of the concept of truth in any form.
        And the consequences of this are WORSE than the multiplication of identity conflicts.

        I doubt that more than a small portion of even academics have much understanding of postmoderism. But I doubt that many more people have much understanding of real liberalism. Yet the liberal philosophy is responsible for ALL modern prosperity.
        Do not underestimate the power of ideas, or philosophies.

        The combination of the amplification of identity conflict and the reject of any concept of truth means that lies are not lies.

        When AOC says that moral truth is more important than empirical facts, though she likely does not understand that, she is demonstrating that at her core she is NOT a socialist but a post modernist.

        Rejecting the existance of truth means that moral truth can be whatever you want it to be.
        That facts do not matter, that you can build up whatever mess of incongruous beleifs you want without ever having to reconcile them. It also means that you can call others immoral without any need to back that up.

        This ideology is far more potentially destructive than socialism.

        About the only good news is that it has a tendency towards self destruction.
        We see that in the holy war emerging between MTF transgendered and radical feminists.
        Post modernism allows each group to stake out the moral high ground without any reference to real facts. Both positions can be concurrently true and false.

        But we also see that in myriads of other areas.

        There was no credible basis for this Russia/Trump nonsense
        On election day 2016 few people in the country gave Russia a thought.
        And no one with any brains would have. The ability of Russia to influence US election is LESS than that of John Oliver.

        The intitial investigation of Trump starting in 2015 was intended as a means of trying him BEFORE the election. But it was kept quiet and not deployed because until nearly the last minute it was not beleived to be necescary AND because it was always an incredibly dangerous effort that could blow up in ones face. It was deployed – barely late in the election and had no impact. It was not used seriously until after the election when suddenly the left found itself having lost an election they thought they were going to win.
        After all on election day Nate Silver said 95% chance of Hillary.

        The left did not read the country correctly and did not beleive it could lose.

        But after having lost this Russia nonsense became much more appealing as an excuse than it would have been before. People shocked at having lost were ready to beleive anything – no matter how ludicrous. The press was prepared to sell anything, something they were less prepared to do before the election.

        The left beleived this nonsense – not because it is credible, but because it wanted to.
        And to a lessor extent because the concept of Truth has been do completely destroyed that we are far easier to sell total garbage.

  10. dhlii permalink
    March 28, 2019 4:13 am

    There is a compelling reason to Trust Barr’s representation regarding the Mueller report.

    And that is simple – if he has engaged in anything more than minor spin – Barr himself is toast. It would infact be a crime for Barr to say that Mueller found nothing, when he had infact found something. And it would be a crime that one way or another would ultimately be discovered.

    I suspect it will take a fairly long time for all the material in the Mueller investigation to be made public. I am sure that it will contain much that will allow those who want to, to rekindle some faint hope that there just might still be something there.

    For the most part I am seeing Republicans MORE actively pushing for transparency.
    Though with an implicit hitch – they want as much of Mueller’s work AND all the house transcripts AND the FISA material AND the unreleased House investigative material.
    And we SHOULD see all of that.

    While I think it is self evident what went on here. Everyone needs the evidence to reach that conclusion on their own.

    We need to do whatever it takes to make sure this can not happen again.

  11. dhlii permalink
    March 28, 2019 4:16 am

    “Am I being too cynical when I observe that countless left-leaning Americans actually hoped”

    Nope, that was obviously true even of posters here.

    Just to be clear – the allegations were always stupid beyond beleif.
    And NO ONE should “hope” they are true – not of Trump or Obama or anyone.

    But if they had actually been True – absolutely Trump should have been jailed.

    But the standard for convicting people is NOT, “I hope they did something bad”.

  12. dhlii permalink
    March 28, 2019 4:23 am

    “Why does Trump continually court Putin’s favor”

    The why is not easy to answer. At the same time it is a CLEAR patter with Trump, and not specific to Putin.

    We have Trump swinging from Kim Un is rocket man, to a nice guy who wants what is best for his country.

    Trump has a unique diplomatic style that is very personal, and has thus far been effective.

    Depending on what he sees as most effective he is at any given time either transparently flattering, or ludicrously insulting.

    It is extremely disconcerting. As a general rule Trump seems to actively court chaos. It is quite clearly a favored negotiating tool of his.

    But for most of us it is nauseating, and a roller coaster ride of anxiety and depression.
    It also works.
    We are free to decide as a nation – that is not what we want, we get that choice again in 2020. We can decide if the emotional price for Trump’s style is worth the benefits.
    Our choice.

  13. dhlii permalink
    March 28, 2019 5:16 am

    “Did Trump commit a crime when he repeatedly denied paying hush money to porn star-opportunist Stormy Daniels? (No, he simply undermined his credibility. Of course, he undermines his credibility every time he lies to the public.)”

    As do those who lie about whether he is lying.
    Trump is extremely good at bringing out the worst in people – particularly his enemies.
    Has Trump done some damage to his own credibility ?
    We each get to decide that on our own.

    But I would suggest not. I am NOT saying that he has stellar credibility, only that his overall credibility is no different than on election day. It is unlikely that the past two years have significantly altered the impression of any significant number of individual voters regarding Trump’s credibility. Left, right, middle, whereever, after two years he is not much different in most of our eyes than on election day.

    The biggest Lie I think he has ever told is that he would act presidential as a president.

    But one thing has changed in the past two years. And it has changed GREATLY,
    Trumps detractors have destroyed their own credibility.
    Mueller does NOT come out of this looking good – even if republicans currently are happy.
    The press comes out of this with their reputations eviscerated – they have incredible work to do to rebuild that. The left and democrats come out of this with their credibility damaged.

    ” Is Trump an authoritarian and even a fascist? (He comes perilously close, and it’s worth noting that he has Mussolini’s bombastic public mannerisms down pat.)”

    BZZT, Wrong. Mannerisms and rhetoric are NOT authoritarian and fascist.

    By ACTS Bush and Obama were both FAR MORE facist and authoritarian.

    Trump is blunt and he throws his weight arround – but he is actually an ANTI-TYRANT, and a real ANTI-FASCIST.

    “Does he stir racist resentments among his white suburban and rural base? (Yep, even though I’m still not convinced that Trump himself is a foaming-at-the-mouth racist.)””

    BZZT, Wrong. Sorry Rock but this is not merely bunkum, but it is little different from the Clinton “deplorables” or the recent Biden “Dreggs of society” remarks.

    We can no more blame Trump for the killings at the pittsburg synagogue or at Christcurch than we can blame Rep. Omar.

    I get extremely tired of this LEFT WING nonsense that somehow actually evil people are NOT responsible for their own actions. The people who massacred others at Christchurch or Pittsburg were going to do so regardless of what Trump or Omar said, regardless of whether they could get their hands on Guns. They were going to do so unless we were miraculously fortunate enough to have a credible reason to anticipate their actions and thwart them ahead of time.

    Poilitics did not make the Unibomber of Lanza – we still have no clue what motivated the los vegas shooter – and maybe it was nothing,

    “The bad news is that, in a hopelessly polarized America, the tribal divisions only stand to deepen.”

    I think that is wrong. There are some people this will never convince. But the one great service the Pitt Bull Mueller has performed – even though I beleive he has done so lawlessly, is he has restored the confidence of a substantial portion of americans in our elections.

    There are things that still need fixed – and Russia scored a huge coup in fomenting outrage and lack of confidence.

    Trump won, playing by the rules. That is the real important conclusion of this. One we should have been able to figure out AT THE TIME.

    At the same time – with respect to political tribalism. One Tribe has LOST. They doubled down again and again, and they were WRONG. It should have been obvious from the start. It should have been obvious to THEM from the start.

    There is an editorial by Denis Prager about all of this that I find interesting.
    When asked how he knew from the begining this was all horseshit.
    Prager responded – Because “the left said it was true, and the one thing that you can take to the bank is that those on the left LIE”
    Prager went on to note that actual liberals – or atleast what we called liberals 40 years ago, as well as conservatives, disagree, are often wrong, but they do not routinely LIE.
    That is an attribute of the LEFT, or communists, of socialists.

    I do not know that I am quite as cynical as Prager,

    Regardless, there are actual CONSEQUENCES to this.

    1). The media has alot of work to do to restore their credibility.
    I do not know if they will do it.
    But that does not matter, UNLESS they do so, their credibility is seriously damaged.

    2). The credibility of the left is shot.

    Both can be summarized by a single line of another editorial I read recently.

    The consequence for getting caught lying is not to be beleived.

    That Rick is the salvation to our polarized political tribalism.
    I may be engaged in wishful thinking, and I doubt that the impact of this will last as long as it should. The media will eventually get back its credibility, even if it does not earn it back, as will the left, We will forget all the lies all too soon.
    But for the moment, we have been lied to, and we know it, and we do not trust those who lied to us, and that is not going to change overnight.

    When two forces are at war with each other there are only two resolutions.
    Some kind of coming together to resolve the problem, or the defeat of one side.
    The left opted to start this war to double down and to risk defeat,
    and they have been defeated. It is a messy defeat, and there are plenty of casualties,
    But it is still a clear defeat.

    Of course republicans will celebrate – as will an awful lot of people – the deplorables, the “dreggs of society”, the “hateful, hating haters”.

    Maybe these are not all “very fine people”, but they are NOT the racist hateful hating haters.

    If you had been following posts here – or the news elseware.
    The atlantic commissioned a study to determine which counties in the united states were the most intolerant. They expected they knew the answer. Confirmation bias should have driven the results, and to be sure they found plenty of intolerance on the right. But the worst intolerance, the worst racism was found in the bluest counties in the nation.

    AS a nation we are not perfect. We are a nation of racists, homophobes, mysoginists, ….
    But we are less racist, less homophobic, less mysoginist, less “hateful hating haters”, than any other nation, any other people, at any other time in history.
    Further those on the left are NOT less, racist, less intolerant, less mysoginist.
    YOUR claim that Trump is giving succor to white racists on the right is NONSENSE.
    Intolerance is NOT a notable atribute of ONE tribe. And to the extent it is, it is more notable in the left.

    We are all less than morally perfect – though again we ARE still the most moral people ever to live. But still none of us should be stepping onto a moral soapbox, and Mueller has just knocked that soapbox out from underneath one group that did.

    And THAT is the RIGHT result, and THAT is the MOST IMPORTANT result.
    And hopefully it will not fade too quickly.

    And yes, the MAGA crowd has a right to crow, not only was Trump vindicated – THEY were too.

    “Meanwhile, the frustrated left will look for loopholes, grumble collectively, and eventually focus its own tribal energies on unseating Trump in the 2020 election.”

    Those who sold this, or who bought into it need to examine themselves.
    That is incredibly hard. But our best hope for the future is that SOME in the left and the media will do so – enough to “depolarize” and “detoxify” our politics – atleast a little.

    It takes incredible safe awareness and courage to recognize personal errors, or worse actual moral failings. Our best hope is that enough will.

  14. dhlii permalink
    March 28, 2019 6:19 am

    This is why we are polarized – one side has a view of the role of our institutions that is impossible.

    https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2019/03/27/why_we_dont_trust_our_institutions_139864.html

  15. dhlii permalink
    March 28, 2019 6:33 am

    Can we KILL FARA PLEASE!!!!

    This is nonsense. Papadoulis was threatened with a FARA prosecution if he did not plead.
    The same with Flynn, Manafort faced FARA claims.

    FARA is unconstitutional and nearly everyone knows it.

    No prosecutor should be wielding it as a weapon – not against democrats, not against republicans.

    https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2019/03/27/manafort_ukraine_and_the_scapegoating_of_greg_craig_139873.html

  16. March 28, 2019 9:17 am

    Excellent, Rick, as always. I especially like the fact that you can come up with parody catchphrases that are original and yet snappy. “Yes We have no Collusion,” got me singing the Jimmy Durante song in my head, lol.

    It’s funny… around the holidays, there were these ridiculous song parodies, portraying Mueller as a demi-god (maybe even not so demi!). I remember one that went:
    “We wish you a Mueller Christmas, We wish you a Mueller Christmas,
    We wish you a Mueller Christmas, And impeachment next year!”

    It went quite viral on Twitter and YouTube, and at least one of the TDS stations ~ I can’t remember which~ played it. Fox played it too, but in a more contemptuous way.

    The ratings that this collusion delusion generated, for both sides, is one of the main reasons why the cable news ratings have soared over the past 2 years. Glen Greenwald noted that any collusion skeptics, no matter how far left, were banned from CNN and MSNBC, including him and Matt Taibbi. Alan Dershowitz, for years a frequent quest on CNN, was eliminated from his featured analyst role there, because he was not sufficiently on board with the “Trump is a traitor, the walls are closing in on him, and Don Jr. and Jared are going down with him!”
    Ex-members of the intelligence community, like the execrable James Brennan, snarled their opinion, always backed by “anonymous sources,” that Trump was absolutely guilty, and that Mueller, the greatest ______ (fill in the blank) in the United States, would finally get him. It was really just a matter of time.

    Meanwhile, after an initial ratings mini-slump, caused by the meteoric ratings rise of Rachel Maddow and her tin foil hat brigade on MSNBC, giving aid and comfort to the millions who could not accept the victory of the orange man, Fox recouped and went on the defensive, with Sean Hannity leading the way, beginning every show by positioning himself as the truth-seeker. As long as the truth was pro-Trump, of course.

    Because the Russian collusion narrative was a ratings bonanza, the cable news networks would not let it go. And those people who watched one network daily likely became obsessed with that channel’s POV.

    I’ve continued to watch all 3 major cable channels, but I watch them more as I would watch a soap opera or a true crime series. The only exception has been Tucker Carlson, who did not spend every show blabbering on about Trump, and often spoke about some of the other issues that have been swept under the rug for 2 years. I’ve been getting a lot of my news from the internet. The young journalist Tim Pool, a former leftist, now centrist, has a couple of good YouTube channels that I’ve found to be very straight up and informative. He reports on one channel, and analyzes on another, making it easy to determine when you’re getting neww, and when you’re getting Tim Pool’s opinion. There are a lot of excellent podcasts, as well.

    Anyway, CNN and MSNBC are now clearly searching for the next “We’ll get him!!” narrative, and Fox will be there to counterbalance. This will go on at least through the 2020 election, and possibly for the duration of Trump’s administration, should he be re-elected. No apologies will be forthcoming, just as Jussie Smollett has not apologized for putting the Chicago PD though weeks of investigation and putting the public through another agonizing and divisive racial “hate crime.”

    TV journalism essentially dead right now. There are a few genuine journalists out there, but not enough to make it through the noise…..

    • dhlii permalink
      March 28, 2019 4:19 pm

      A reputation for truth is EARNED – and can be lost.

      When you ACTUALLY lie – particularly about things of consequence, the appropriate result is

      Not to be believed

      To those STILL harping about Trumps criticism of the Intelligence community.

      I have said repeatedly – that our Intelligence community has an ABYSMAL record – they have gotten nearly every major world event wrong, they have been often horribly wrong in their actions – all the way back to the immediate aftermath of WWII.

      John Brennan has just openly admitted that he “got it wrong”.
      Given that he was openly accusing Trump of Treason – that is an understatement.

      Regardless, you can not defend the US Intelligence community over Trump without defending John Brennan.

      Should Trump trust Putin ? NO!! Should he trust our Intelligence community ? NO!!

      One of the other naratives that is hopefully DEAD is this nonsense that carreer public servants are trustworthy or apolitical.

      To those who are skeptical of Trump – ABSOLUTELY!!! Be Skeptical.
      On myriads of matters, I do not know if Trump is right, and I worry that he is not.
      On most of those I truly wish we could trust those advising him.
      But I do not.
      I do NOT trust “the generals” when they say “we should not leave Syria or Afghanistan”.
      They might be right, but I no longer beleive they are truly better informed or more importantly regardless of how much information they have, that they truly have good judgement.

      While Trump was exonerated – the claim that Russia hacked the DNC is unfortunately still taken as gospel. The people I know that I do trust in that area say – that is HORSESHIT.
      Absent inside information from a source you can trust that you know is not getting “false flagged” – and that is a near unacheivable standard, you can not ever know who is responsible for a hack. there is no finger print that can not be faked.

      Regardless, skepticism has been vindicated.
      Skepticism of the media,
      Skepticism of those in government.
      Even the intelligence community and “the generals”.

      To those who would prefer a world in which what the president was doing had the support of a consensus of the “experts” in government – I agree, two heads are usually better than one.

      When your view conflicts with that of an informed expert – that is excellent reason to double and triple check your reasoning. It is unfortunately NOT determinative.

      I wish the IC and the generals and the other “experts” and the president were in agreement,
      but they are not. Thus far Trump has proven more credible than they.

      .

    • March 29, 2019 3:54 pm

      Priscilla: Yes, sometimes I think I have a little too much fun playing with words, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. As for the cable networks, you’re spot on: I’ve been following CNN’s slow descent from a reliably neutral news source to a spouting fount of fashionable progressive talking points. Their ratings had been sagging, so I guess they realized they had to turn themselves into an amen corner on one side or the other. (What does that say about the center’s woeful lack of sex appeal?) As Trump would tweet, “Sad.”

      I do enjoy a few of CNN’s commentators even when I disagree with them: leftist Van Jones is always lively, impassioned and surprisingly dogma-free in his arguments, while David Gergen is the sober, eminently reasonable elder statesman. I watch Fox News only when I’m on the verge of throwing a shoe at CNN and need a quick fix of ideological revenge. Of course, there are no cable networks in the middle.

      • March 29, 2019 4:52 pm

        Funny, I like Van Jones too. Gergen I can take or leave, but he is definitely more reasonable than the rest.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 2:12 am

        It seems to be a bizarre quick of your form of moderate to absolute reject “ideology”.

        Ideology: A collection of normative beliefs and values that an individual or group holds for other than purely epistemic reasons.

        I have a problem with the “epistemic” part. Libertarianism is absolutely epistemic.
        I keep trying to touch on that every time I try to address free will, and determinism here.

        Regardless, an ideology can be true, partially true or false.
        We do not get to discount something just because we can label it “extreme” or “dogma” or “ideology”.

        Ideas and ideologies are good or bad because of the truth they contain.

        The most fundamental consequence of the past 3 years of garbage MUST be the loss of credibility and integrity we ascribe to those who sold us lies.

        If that does not occur, if there is no consequence, there will be no learning, no benefit and we will repeat this again.

        I have no idea what the immediate future will be, but I can predict with near certainty, that the post modernist left will be destroyed. That is inevitable. The question is how that will occur.

        This is one possible moment for that. Or atleast a moment in which that process could start.

        But I could be wrong. and that would be really bad. You fixate on Trump, I am far more concerned about what happens if Trump is destroyed. The factors that brought Trump to power are still present. Further the stronger the left becomes ultimately the stronger the backlash will be. I am far more worried about the NEXT Trump. Actual totalitarian regimes (left or right) follow failure. Trump is a natural and weak response to Obama.
        Destroy Trump and an empowered left will with certainty mean the next Trump will be MORE Totalitarian.

        Truth is not arrived at by splitting the difference between two extremes.

        My conception of “moderate” is not splitting the baby on every left right issue to compromise on the center. It is finding what is actually true about each issue. That sometimes favors the left and sometimes the right and sometimes the truth is neither left nor right, nor even in the middle.

  17. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    March 28, 2019 8:04 pm

    “Meanwhile, the frustrated left will look for loopholes, grumble collectively, and eventually focus its own tribal energies on unseating Trump in the 2020 election. Chances are they’ll overlook the candidates with big-tent appeal and pick Trump’s opposite number to run against him: picture a youthful, female person of color with socialist tendencies. ”

    Rick, So far Biden has been at the top of the polls I’ve seen for the dem nomination. An old white guy with a more moderate tendency than his prog competitors. Maybe the dem party isn’t going to turn out as left and as PC as the opposition is hoping. Maybe all the pie in the sky prog promises will have been shot down by economic and political realities by the time the primaries arrive. We can hope. And send money. Biden, O Rourke, Klubacher, Hickenlooper are not wild eyed progs. The Green New deal went down to total defeat, Medicare for all is being criticized as not possible by many democrats. The dream that the far left is going to run away with the dem nomination that the GOP has may be premature. Of course the GOP opinion formers will just make up any BS they think anyone might believe for accusations and labels if a dem moderate is the nominee, there is no stopping that.

  18. March 28, 2019 8:10 pm

    As Priscilla said, I have Durante stuck in my head :- )

  19. dduck12 permalink
    March 28, 2019 10:13 pm

    Interesting Medicare fraud case in Florida:
    “Trump just gave a huge gift to an alleged billion dollar Medicare fraudster
    Perhaps he should have listened to lawyers who actually know what they are talking about.”
    “Yet, while O’Connor’s opinion in Texas v. United States is likely to be reversed, either by the conservative United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit or by the Supreme Court, the Justice Department’s claim that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional already threatens a seemingly unrelated prosecution of a Florida health care executive on trial for allegedly committing $1 billion worth of Medicare and Medicaid fraud.”
    https://thinkprogress.org/trump-obamacare-medicare-fraud-4910319d89ed/

    • dhlii permalink
      March 29, 2019 1:35 am

      You are really offering something from Think Progress ? Breitbart is more credible.

      Regardless, Is Trump going to be able to slash fraud – unlikely.

      With respect to the TX federal court decision and conflicting recommendations – the DEBATE was not about the law, it was about the politics.

      Many republicans are of the view that PPACA has become sufficiently popular that doing more than whittling at the edges is political suicide.
      They are entitled to that view, they may be right. Trump does not hold that view.

      Regardless, that should be irrelevant to a decision regarding appealing a decision by a Federal Judge.

      I really do not know the details of Conner’s decision. I am not particularly interest in the rants about him, or the predictions by left wing nuts.

      At the surface his decisions sounds correct. PPACA was ultimately blessed as constitutional because it was a tax, and inside the taxing powers of the US government. I thought that was a poor decision at the time. But it is SCOTUS’s actual decision. It is Roberts Decision.
      My guess is that if this makes it to SCOTUS Roberts will write an oppinion claiming that his original oppinion does not mean what it says.

      Roberts has long ago demonstrated an unwillingness to make calls that might be disruptive.

      But Roberts motives have nothing to do with actual constitutionality.

      PPACA was unconstitutional the first time it got to SCOTUS, that has not changed.

      As Best as I can tell the TX judge is carefully following Roberts oppinion.

      That is what I expect federal judges to do.

      But it you have a cite that demonstrates his reasoning deviates from Roberts Decision in the PPACA constitutionality case – please provide it. I have little difficulty beleiving that federal judges make wrong and political decisions.

      The one problem I have is that it does not appear he was being asked to rule all of PPACA unconstitutional. As a Rule of thumb courts are not supposed to rule on issues that are not before him.

      The constitutionality of PPACA does not effect whether Fraud is a crime.

      Bilking the government for services delivered under an unconstitutional law is still fraud and still a crime – no matter how novel or creative the defense might get.

    • March 29, 2019 11:54 am

      dduck, yes this could cause these charges to be dismissed under the PPACA law. There are laws on the books that can be used that have been there for years and many have found themselves fined or in jail after conviction.

      I is not the government job to require anyone to buy any private service or product, nor is it their responsibility to force individuals or companies to offer services they may not need nor want.

      The answer is competition. If the government wants a product that offers those services, the the government should offer that product themselves. Not Medicare for all, not Medicaid, but a competitive product that uses acturial tables, breakeven analysis, pricing and other tools that produces a product that is no more costly than PPACA. Then compete with commercial companies and see what happens. The infrastructure is there through CMS to create this product. And finally, the plan should be required to be priced at a level that creates no more cost per year than specifically identified in the legislation.

      Then if people like it, they will buy it. If they need it, they will buy it.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 6:29 pm

        Fraud is a crime – whether PPACA is constitutional or not.

        This has ZERO effect on any criminal prosecutions.

        This argument is ludicrously stupid.

        Further the claim as I understand it is in regard to medicare fraud. PPACA had nothing to do with medicare.

  20. dduck12 permalink
    March 29, 2019 12:20 am

  21. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    March 29, 2019 9:37 am

    Is this fake news? Is Andrew Napolitano the “enemy of the people”?

    I think the POTUS, the GOP, and trump nation may be celebrating prematurely.

    The entire idea of having a 4 page summary written by a Barr, man who held a year back that no obstruction of justice was possible is beginning to smell bad. I really did not want to think that.

    Anyhow, “For Balance”:

    “Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano defended embattled House Intelligence Committee chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) Thursday, stating the Democratic lawmaker is likely correct to insist there will be evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia in the still-unseen Mueller report.
    A day after Napolitano caused a stir by declaring both that the Mueller report will show “something” on conspiracy and that the special counsel’s summary is 700 pages long, the Fox analyst appeared on Fox Business Network’s Cavuto Coast to Coast to further speculate on what the report will show when made public.
    After Fox Business host Neil Cavuto noted it was now reported the full Mueller report is 300-plus pages, the two men discussed Attorney General William Barr’s four-page letter summarizing the special counsel’s findings. Napolitano said it was “not binding interpretation” before pointing out Democrats are looking to “second-guess” both Mueller and Barr once the full report is made public.
    “When this comes out, when Adam Schiff was making the statement he is still convinced of collusion, paraphrasing here, that prompted Republicans on the panel to say you have to go, you got to resign, he is not resigning,” Cavuto stated. “Just taking him at his word, would he be aware of something that Mueller wasn’t?”
    Napolitano said he doesn’t know the answer to that question but he does believe Schiff is right that there will be something about collusion in the special counsel’s report.
    “I think that Congressman Schiff is correct, in that report will be evidence of the existence of a conspiracy, not enough evidence to prove the existence beyond a reasonable doubt,” the judge declared. “In that report will be evidence of obstruction of justice, interfering with an FBI investigation for a personal gain but not enough evidence to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt.”
    Napolitano added the California Democrat needs to decide whether or not to reveal other sources that will bolster his claims that there’s more evidence of collusion between Trumpworld and Russia.
    “So on the collusion part, we do know that the Russians were very interested in mucking around with our election?” Cavuto asked. “They had a number of meetings with Trump personnel back in the day but that the—the quid pro quo part—where Trump people had to work with them to get what they wanted to do, that did not evidence itself, right?”
    Napolitano concluded: “We have seen no evidence of that. What’s in the report, what’s in the raw evidence, remains to be revealed.”

    • dhlii permalink
      March 29, 2019 3:11 pm

      Is this “fake news” ?

      Yes. Speculation is not news. Bad speculation is particularly not news. Hope for something not evidenced is not news.

      Is Napalitano an “enemy of the people”.

      I like Judge Napalitano. But this is an egregiously stupid error in judgement on his part and he should know better.

      Yes, he is engaged in actions that whatever his intentions harm the people.
      I have zero problem criticizing him.

      I do expect the Mueller report will eventually be made public.
      I fully expect that those suffering from TDS will find something in it to continue their delusions. Adam Schiff and Sen Warner, and several others have purportedly seen evidence that is more than circumstantial, but that they can not talk about. Yet apparently Mueller, Barr, Nunes, Gowdy, …… none of those have seen that evidence.

      To beleive that there is anything in the Mueller report that will do anything more than allow those with TDS to continue to beleive that 9/11 was actual an Israeli plot, requires beleiving that lots of republicans and democrats who are NOT particularly friendly to Trump are on the inside of a conspiracy to protect him that inevitably will be exposed.

      BTW the russians did NOT have a number of meetings with the Trump campaign.

      There are ZERO meetings between the Trump campaign and anyone connected to Putin of the Russian government.

      The very closest you get is Natalia – who Met with Clinton surogates BEFORE and AFTER her 15 minute meeting with the Trump campaign.
      Who is NOT affiliated with the Russian govenrment – anymore that Mark Elias is affiliated with the US govenrment.

      Can we cease spraying nonsense.

      Steele purportedly received information from actual Russian Spies.
      That is the only direct contact that we have in the entire election between any campaign and anyone actually part of the Russian government.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 29, 2019 4:46 pm

      Just want to be clear – your taking ownership of this.

      I do not want to hear from you later that no, you really did not beleive you just supported the investigation.

      I also want to be clear – by continuing to buy into this you are asserting that not only is Trump a crook, that he has gotten much of his campaign to fall on their swords, for him, the leadership of the GOP to do the same, that the press is either covering up for him or lying that Mueller and Barr are part of a coverup.

      Is there more “evidence of collusion” in the Mueller report ? Actual uncontroverted plausible evidence ? NO!.

      Are there things that we might not be aware of that Mueller investigated and ultimate found without sufficient merit to persue – YES.

      If you expect to find real leads that have not already been discounted in the Mueller report that requires:

      Barr to be lying, and Mueller to be holding his tongue.

      OR Mueller and his team to be incompetent.

  22. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    March 29, 2019 9:41 am

    I should have been paying more attention. I am too trusting. From December:

    “President Trump has repeatedly expressed his belief, in public and in private, that the attorney general should act as his personal capo, pressing investigations against his enemies and ignoring violations by his allies. And yet his choice to fill the job (after his first pick infuriated him by refusing to violate clear ethical protocols) is a relatively mainstream choice: William Barr, who held the same position under George H.W. Bush.

    A partial answer to the mystery is that Barr has publicly defended Trump on several of his pet issues. He endorsed the firing of James Comey, called for investigation of the Clinton Foundation, impugned the neutrality of Robert Mueller’s investigators, and defended Trump’s practice of demanding investigations of his enemies. Barr has a record as one of the members of the Republican legal Establishment most indulgent of Trump’s conspiratorial mafia ethos.

    But a new report in the Wall Street Journal suggests a more complete answer. Earlier this year, Barr wrote a lengthy memo excoriating Mueller’s investigation of Trump for obstruction of justice. Mueller’s investigation was “grossly irresponsible,” had “potentially disastrous implications,” and other choice descriptions spread over 20 pages culled from public reports. This memo was completely unsolicited.”

    http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2018/12/trump-william-barr-memo-mueller-obstruction-justice.html

    • dhlii permalink
      March 29, 2019 5:03 pm

      I do not think that Barr was a good choice of AG.

      But you are nuts if you think that Mueller sent a report to Barr saying something substantially different from what Barr reported to Congress.

      That would ACTUALLY be obstruction of Justice.

      In theory
      Barr can overrule Mueller. Barr can keep Mueller confidential.
      In practice he can do neither.
      But he can not legally lie about Mueller’s findings.

      I want to address something else that Napalitano touched on.

      While He is LOOSELY correct in that the law is a creation of humans and therefore humans get to decide what it means.

      He is in error in suggesting that it is a matter of discretion.

      If what is criminal and what is not is not CLEAR, and near universally understood, then we are lawless.

      It is not a matter of oppinion whether the facts constitute conspiracy or obstruction.

      WE do not convict people and jail then on the whim of prosecutors judges and juries and how they feel about some particular person.

      We specifiy what constitutes a crime – we draft laws. Those laws say that if you have done x, y, and z, then you have violated this statute.

      If you have not met those specific requirements – you have not committed a crime.

      If you are arguing for ambiguity and significant discretion – you are arguing for anarchy.

      You are also arguing for law that varies based on your feelings or on who you are going after.

      That is actually WORSE than anarchy.

      Clinton is actually guilty – a criminal because the act she committed meets all the requirements of the statute, narrowly construed.
      Trump and his people are not guilty – because they do not meet many of the requirements of the statute – narrowly construed.

      We write laws BEFORE people are prosecuted – specifically to avoid prosecuting people for who they are rather than what they have done.

      Blind Justice means the same law – republicans/democrats. Black/white rich/poor

      There is not Robby’s law, or Adam Schiff’s law.

      There is not Mueller’s law, or Barr’s law.

      There is one law. We do not have to agree on what it should be.
      We are free to try to change it.
      But we must near universally agree on what it is – because if we do not we have anarchy.
      If we do not, we do not and can not have legitimate government.

      More so than anyone here – I think we have far too many laws and most of those we have are wrong.

      But those ARE the laws. I may argue that many are immoral, and inneffective.
      I may argue that they should be changed. That juries should not convict,
      But they are still the law.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 29, 2019 5:17 pm

      As I recall the DOJ ethics office told Sessions that he did not have to recuse, and that even if he did that he did not have to recuse broadly.

      Sessions chose on his own to recuse. I think that was a very ethical decision.
      It was NOT however required by protocols or conventions, or DOJ guidelines.

      The requirement to recuse was far MORE present with regard to Rosenstein, and even Mueller.

      Rosenstein was clearly from the start a witness. You can not have a role in any investigation in which you are potentially a witness.
      Rosenstein actually did violate protocols and norms, and traditions.

      Further Trump is actually correct. If Sessions was going to recuse, then he should not have accepted the position or he should have informed Trump of the possibility.

      As the elected president Trump is entitled to an AG that reflects his views and policies – presuming he can get them confirmed.

      You are as always trying to convert your wishes into norms and rules.

      Worse, you really want your wishes to be the norms and rules for THIS SPECIFIC INSTANCE. You have no interest in having the same rules for those on the left.

      I think Adam Schiff is a disgraced and discredited pollitical hack and fool who bet heavily on an obviously losing had.

      But schiff is not REQUIRED to resign – though it would be a wise choice.

      Clearly he is far less ethical than Sessions.

      Inarguably neither he nor you seem to the rules you wish to impose on Sessions apply to Schiff.

      Nunes temporarily stepped down because of the mere FALSE allegation, by Schiff that he had met with the whitehouse. Nunes had not. He met with a whistleblower who had classified information on unmasking, who was unwilling to provide that information in an unclassified setting, and unwilling to meet with Nunes in his own department for fear of persecution.
      Nunes contacted the white house counsels office to find a SCIFF he could use for the meeting. That is unlike Clinton who would have just faxed it home to her maid.

      • March 30, 2019 9:43 am

        “The President, as far as I know, is not being accused of engaging in any unlawful act of evidence impairment. Instead, Mueller is proposing an unprecedented expansion of obstruction law, so as to reach facially-lawful acts taken by the President in exercising the discretion vested in him by the Constitution” ~June 2018 William Barr Memo to the DOJ

        Dave this is the passage of the Barr Memo that became controversial during his confirmation hearings, and to which I was referring. I believe that he is clearly objecting to the obstruction probe as an “unprecedented expansion” of the definition of obstruction as to include presidential actions granted to the executive in Article 2.

        https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/5638848-June-2018-Barr-Memo-to-DOJ-Muellers-Obstruction.html

        That said, you are correct. I forgot that Rand Paul voted against Barr’s confirmation.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 2:44 pm

        I appologize. I misunderstood your comment.

        I though “Barr Memo” meant the Barr Memo to congress.

        The quote from the other Barr Memo you cite is excellent, and more important it is THE LAW, as it is. Trying to expand the breadth of ANY law as a prosecutor is MISCONDUCT.
        IF the law is not sufficiently broad to cover soemthing you think should be a crime.
        CHANGE THE LAW.

      • March 30, 2019 9:47 am

        Damn, this landed in the wrong place, Dave. It was meant as a reply to your comment under my comment below. WordPress can be so clunky.

    • March 29, 2019 8:00 pm

      Roby, Barr was asked repeatedly about his legal memo on the obstruction probe, during his confirmation hearings. And still got a few Democrat votes.

      He was also repeatedly asked, by Republicans, about his decades-long personal friendship with Robert Mueller, as well as the friendship of their wives, who apparently still attend a bible study group together. And still got unanimous GOP confirmation

      The guy is a former AG for Bush 41, who just a couple of months ago, you were extolling as the epitome of decency and class. Barr has probably been as admired and respected in his own right as Robert Mueller, and the two of them are long time colleagues and remain personal friends to this day.

      In his memo, he objected to the idea that a president could be found to be obstructing justice for exercising his Article 2 powers. He was objecting on constitutional and legal grounds. His legal opinion is frequently sought in these matters.

      Any implication that he is a so-called “Trumpanzee” is absurd. I mean, just really absurd. I think that he came back to public service to try and salvage the reputation of the DOJ, after Obama’s AG’s corrupted it, and Jeff Sessions was clearly not able to gain control over it. I cannot imagine that he would destroy his stellar reputation to defend any president, although he may have believed that he was defending the presidency itself.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 5:08 am

        I object to Barr on legal and policy grounds.
        I do not beleive Barr is the person needed to fix the problems not merely with DOJ/FBI but to prosecute government misconduct within the other parts of government.

        With respect to the law, Barr gives the law and government broader scope than he ought. Barr was not confirmed by republicans unanimously Rand Paul voted against him. because of his advocacy of warrant-less surveillance.

        Barr is NOT the person who is going to grasp that the foundation of the entire investigation was corrupt.

        At the same time Barr is not nearly as bad as Mueller – at least not that I am aware of.
        I have no knowledge that Barr has a reputation for serially agressively prosecuting innocent people.

        Did bar include an Article 2 powers justification in his letter ? I do not recall that.

        Regardless there are 3 major flaws atleast one of which and usually all of which apply to every left espoused theory of obstruction.

        The Article 2 Powers flaw is one of those. Derschowitz has made that argument repeatedly.
        The broader version fo the same argument is NO ONE not the president or anyone else can be guilty of obstruction for an act that they are legally entitled to do.
        Any application of the law otherwise would violate equal protection.
        It would inherently result in a situation where one person could legally do the act that was considered obstruction and another could not. Aside from violating the equal protection clause that is a recipe for exactly the political corruption we have right now, or worse.

        The next it the elements of the crime issue. That was what Barr focussed on. Every potential obstruction instance that Mueller raised was missing atleast one, and often as many as three required elements for the crime. The SC and AG and even SCOTUS do not get to decide what the law is. That is congresses job. If a crime is defined with 4 elements, and only 3 are met, then that crime did not occur. Congress can fix that – if it is actually a flaw, and it rarely is. Prosecutors are not supposed to charge if all elements are not present. Judges are not supposed to put a case to a jury if evidence is not provided for each element. This is not optional, it is not a matter of judgement. You can have a judgement call if the evidence is weak, but evidence of EACH element of a crime must exist, you can not wish or hope for that evidence.

        The last issue – which is not absolute, it the absence of an underlying crime. It is possible to commit obstruction even if there is no underlying crime. But the obstruction needs to be absolutely egregious. We want to be extremely careful to NEVER prosecute innocent people for vigourously asserting their own innocence.

        I would note that the later was CONSTANTLY abridged by Mueller.

        Every single 18 USC 1001 charge Mueller has made would ordinarily be subject to extreme scrutiny because the person he charged was not found guilty of an underlying offense.
        18 USC 1001 – lying to a federal agent, requires that the lie is intentional, that it is significant, and that it interfered with the investigation. You can not violate 18 USC 1001 by lying to the government about something the government already knows. Yet in every instance Mueller has charged 18 USC 1001 that has been the case.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 5:21 am

        The entire nonsense regarding the Mueller report and Barr’s summary is just total idiocy.

        My guess is that those on the left are suspicious that Barr might distort Mueller, because AG’s on the left would have done so. Holder tanked investigations into Louis Lehrner as well as many others. Lynch tanked the Clinton investigation.

        But again we have an unequal application of the law. Democrats can politically tank an investigation without consequence.
        Does anyone doubt that if Barr is misrepresenting the Mueller report the consequences Barr will be enormous ? Even if he otherwise survived he would lose his integrity and republicans and democrats alike would scorn him.
        While Holder and Lynch are celebrated.

        Another reason that the angst regarding the Barr Memor and Mueller report is nonsense is because the Barr memo could have easily been written 6 months ago. Absent Mueller having some top secret ace in the hole that never leaked even an inkling. Everything of consequence about the Mueller investigation has been know, pretty much from the begining.

        Pretending that Barr is lying or Mueller has some dog whistle claim hidden in the report is nonsense.

        Aside from finding out the exact level or unprofessional anger Mueller has laced through his report, there is unlikely anything in it that we have not all known for months.

        I do not oppose more transparency – though lets try as hard as possible to follow the law,
        But the default in this case should be to Trust Barr – because any lie will be found out, because it will have huge consequences, and because Barr told us the same thing we all already know.

  23. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    March 29, 2019 9:46 am

    Today’s installment of why I loath trump, the man the GOP is so proud of today:

    “…After claiming “totally exoneration” and “complete vindication,” Trump turned to vindictiveness. He didn’t quite hit “lock her up,” but he made it clear he wasn’t going to claim victory and move on, instead predicting “big problems” to come for the Justice and FBI officials who asked for warrants—approved by judges—to surveil members of his campaign. The guy who refused to release his taxes and openly asked the Russians to hack his opponent wants to pretend that a report that didn’t charge him means he’s now innocent of all wrongdoing.

    “I beat my case,” he said. “When you beat something, you beat it.”

    Actually, that last quote came from R. Kelly, complaining about facing new charges for the crimes a lot like those he’d already gotten away with.

    Back to the president, he reminded us just how thin-skinned and class-conscious he remains:

    “I have a better education than them, I’m smarter than them, I went to the best schools they didn’t. Much more beautiful house, much more beautiful apartment. Much more beautiful everything. And I’m president, and they’re not.”…”

    https://www.thedailybeast.com/trump-mocks-ridiculous-bullshit-at-post-mueller-report-grand-rapids-rally?ref=home

    • dhlii permalink
      March 29, 2019 5:56 pm

      So you want to let criminals off the hook – unless they are Trump ?

      Those in the FBI and DOJ and elsewhere in govenrment ABSOLUTELY violated those guidelines and protocols that you hold dear – except when you do not.

      There are also numerous actual crimes that have been committed.

      If you wish to jail Flynn, Papadoulis, Van Zandt, Stone for inaccurate statements to government agents or under oath.

      I expect you to hold EVERYONE who does the same to the same standard.
      In fact I expect you to hold those in LAW ENFORCEMENT to a HIGHER standard.

      Comey leaked classified information, he has admitted to that under oath.

      There are numerous under oath statements by Comey, McCabe, Strzok, Page, Ohr, Baker that cannot all be true – inotherwords atleast one of them is lying – about something of substance. Who is lying should be investigated and prosecuted. These are the people who prosecute others, they should be subject to the same justice they impose on others.

      Matthew 18:21-35

      It is not “vindictive” to hold people to the standards that they expect of others.

      McCabe has lied to investigators and lied under oath.

      Glenn Simpson has lied to congress.

      As we learn more, and likely Mueller’s report will provide us with much more,
      We learn more of the lying under oath and to congress of the various conspriators in DOJ/FBI.

      We have Testimony from Comey, McCabe Strzok, … that is contradicted by the testimony of others, as well as by emails texts and other records that have been obtained. With near certain more to follow.

      Absolutely all these and more should be prosecuted.

      The constitution dictates that a warrant aplication must provide proof of probable cause that a crime was committed and that the warrant will produce further evidence of that crime.
      The applicant must swear that the evidence they provide is true. That it is not mere rumours and allegation. It need not be sufficient to prove beyond a reasonable doubt, but the apllicant must swear that it is evidence – not innuendo – not the unverified opo reasearch from an opposing political party.

      You allege that Trump should be removed and jailed if he conspired with a foreign power to manipulate a US election.
      If you can prove that – then that would be a crime and that is what should happen.

      Conspiring with DOJ/FBI to manipulate a US election is NO DIFFERENT.

      Twisting DOJ/FBI’s arm to publicly exonerate Clinton of a crime she clearly committed, is itself A CRIME – and a worse one, and particularly for those in DOJ/FBI.

      Using the DOJ/FBI to investigate a political opponent using false allegation is also A CRIME – and a worse one, and particularly for those in DOJ/FBI.

      This is not about vindictiveness. It is not about hypocracy.

      It is about the rule of law, It is about uniform standards of conduct. It is about expecting that those charged with enforcing the law more so than anyone else must also obey it.

  24. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    March 29, 2019 9:52 am

    I can see why trump is so hyped up about Jessie Smollett. They are both in exactly the same position.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 29, 2019 5:59 pm

      “I can see why trump is so hyped up about Jessie Smollett. They are both in exactly the same position.”

      Only if black is the same as white and up is the same as down.

      I like Jussie Smollet.
      I do not like Trump.
      I have sympathy for Smollet.
      I have none for Trump.

      Smollet has committed a crime.
      Trump has not.

      They are very nearly in the OPPOSITE position.

      Smollet is getting away with a crime – because he is on the left and we do not prosecute those on the left.

      Trump is being treated as a liar and criminal because he is FALSELY accused of a crime, despite the fact that they remains zero evidence of any actual crime.

  25. March 29, 2019 11:27 am

    Roby “Is this fake news? Is Andrew Napolitano the “enemy of the people”?

    I think the POTUS, the GOP, and trump nation may be celebrating prematurely.”

    Who knows 100% other than Barr and Mueller.

    I can only say if the parties want to do what is right for the country, all 300 pages, or whatever number, will be released with only those parts so damaging for individuals testifing and operatives whose identity would cause harm are redacted. If there is evidence Schiff has now, it is their responsibility for the good of the country to begin impeachment hearings.

    The worst thing that can continue is this trickle of information from different sources that know little more than you or I. The continued rumors only divide this country more, resulting in bad candidates for president, a further fractured voting population giving us fringe candidates since middle America is tuning out. Last election we had almost 100 million eligible voters not voting.

    And if we have a Trump/ Anyone proposing forced healthcare…Trump/ Anyone proposing Medicare for all…Trump/ Anyone pledging to reenter a piss poor climate deal…etc…

    Then I suspect I will be part of that 100Million next election.

    • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
      March 29, 2019 12:36 pm

      Ron, I 100% agree with you. This trickle is a disaster. The full report redacted to a bare minimum that hides no important fact is needed ASAP.

      You may remember my post last week were I stated that I was satisfied with the outcome, that I did not want to see the POTUS under criminal prosecution during his term or a party nominee under indictment during the election. I also stated above that Barr seems to me to be a straight shooter and that I did not suspect he was conniving in some way.

      I really want to trust people. I really do not want to be the cynical one who thinks everything is a sham. Barr worked for Bush 41, who I honor and respect as a person and a POTUS. I wanted to believe that makes Barr a person I can basically trust. But the political nature of this finally is just too much.

      I hope that in the end Barr was basically faithful to the results.

      Everything I have read or heard about this sad chapter makes me think that Napolitano’s words were correct:

      “I think that Congressman Schiff is correct, in that report will be evidence of the existence of a conspiracy, not enough evidence to prove the existence beyond a reasonable doubt,” the judge declared. “In that report will be evidence of obstruction of justice, interfering with an FBI investigation for a personal gain but not enough evidence to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt.”

      That is not a situation for trump and the GOP to be war whooping and backslapping about adn turning vindictive on their critics about. It is not a situation that did not deserve to be fully investigated.

      Sigh.

      • March 29, 2019 1:12 pm

        Roby

        “I really want to trust people. ”

        You earn trust. You can only demand public respect. What people think about you in private is completely different. Trust and integrity go hand in hand and right now I see no one in Washington with integrity that I would trust. I do not see one person in Washington that I would want my daughters or son married to, ether now or when the politician was younger.

        Now we are hearing more and more on Fox news about investigation of Trump financial records. When Fox starts talking about it, there is more than just smoke, there is a small flicker of flame that can grow bigger like the Mueller investigation.

        I started out being a Howard Shultz fan. Although I did not support some of his positions as some were too close to the far lefts positions on a few things, he still was more centrist. But now I think he has to be mentally challenged to want to go through what Trump is going through. Why would anyone want to put themselves and their family through that hell.

        And rest assured, if he runs and wins as a democrat, I think he will have a republican targeting his back. And heaven help us if he wins as an third party, it will be one of the few times in history the dems and reps agreed on anything. Both of them going after Shultz.

        But my biggest question today is about Schiff. He swears he had information on Trump that will prove collusion and obstruction. If he has it, why is he holding back? What good is that doing for the country?

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 7:35 pm

        You can not demand respect either – you have to earn that too.

        But Trust, respect, character, credibility, these are all non-binary attributes.
        You are generally entitled to expect others who do not know you to weigh those neutrally.

        But just as you can earn trust or respect or credit, you can earn disrespect, distrust, and poor credibility.

        Next, those who actually have power over you – aka government, are not entitled to a neutral position. We start with mild distrust.

      • March 29, 2019 9:24 pm

        Dave, did you read what I wrote? ” ” You earn trust. You can only demand public respect. What people think about you in private is completely different. ” Public respect IS NOT respect.

        You say “You can not demand respect either – you have to earn that too.”

        When I was in the service and ssid ” yes sir” do you really think I respected the asshole that was directed toward. That is demanded respect.

        Public respect is not respect! You earn private respect!

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 5:23 am

        You are going to have to explain to me what this thing you call public respect is.

        WE owe those in government some very narrow obedience.
        That is NOT respect, public or otherwise.

      • March 30, 2019 10:24 am

        Dave “You are going to have to explain to me what this thing you call public respect is.”

        There are a couple things I could use, but to keep the response short I will us this one. Team wins championship. Two players on team can not stand whatever person is in the office of president. Team invited to white house to meet president and be congradulated by said person. All players except one attend, shake hands with president, etc. One player is a no show. And provides public release as to why they are a no show stating they dislike the president, do not support the person and has no respect for the person, either personal or professional life.

        The one player that attended, but had a complete dislike for the president as a person, as well as policies, had to be respectful and act like they approved of the person. “Public Respect”

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 7:42 pm

        You may not “investigate” the private activities of ANYONE, not Trump, not your neighbor, because you feel like it.

        Neither the DOJ/FBI nor the House of representatives is free to pry into the lives of ordinary people absent “Probable cause that a crime has been committed”.

        Nothing in this entire mess has met the probable cause standard.

        There is a huge gulf between Transparency in govenrment – government has no rights, no privacy. There are few legitimate reasons for government to keep secrets.

        We are addressing one of those now. When government investigates someone and DOES NOT prosecute them, Everything related to that is ordinarily not merely private, but illegal to disclose. Government is not a tool to allow you to pry into the lives of your neighbors.

        Releasing grand jury mater is a CRIME. Under rare circumstances it can be done with a court order.

        There is no exception for the house of representatives.

        Inside of government the norm should be transparency.
        With respect to the private lives of individuals – including presidents, the norm is privacy.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 7:48 pm

        Ron.

        Schiff is/was LYING. That is increasingly self evident.

        He has no secret source of information that was not available to Nunes, Gowdy, Mueller, the Press, the DOJ/FBI.

        He MIGHT know more than you or I though I highly doubt that.

        The fundimental difference between what your and I know and what Mueller knows is that we have heard all the stories and rumors, but he has investigated and disproven most or all of them. We have to decide which are true or false based on the evidence that is public.

        There is no secret evidence hiding in Muellers report.

        My advice is have him testify to the House ASAP.

        It is possible for him to be able to tell what can be told as well as to assert what he was able to disprove without revealing either classified sources, or grand jury material.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 6:48 pm

        “Ron, I 100% agree with you. This trickle is a disaster. The full report redacted to a bare minimum that hides no important fact is needed ASAP.”

        Whether you or I like that or not – it is not what you are likely to get.

        You need a court order to release grand jury material.
        Government is generally barred from releasing anything about people that it does not charge.

        Further I have ZERO interest in Mueller’s “oppinions”.
        I am only interested in the unspun facts. I do not want to know their legal theories – particularly ones they were unwilling to stand up and own.

        The law means what a prosecutor can persuade a court it means.
        Not what he can persuade himself, and especially not what he was unable to persuade himself.

        I have zero interest in Mueller’s speculation.
        I do not care what his personal views about Trump are.

        Further Mueller has all of Stone’s emails, all of Corsi’s all of Papadoulis’s all of Page’s,
        The FISA warrant means that Mueller likely has all communications of anyone “two hops from Page – that is likely 10’s of thousands of people.

        If it was purportedly unacceptable for Russia to have the DNC – how is it not criminal for the federal govenrment to dump everything from the Trump campaign.

        Are we going to make this the new norm ?

        If we are doing this – why not have DOJ/FBI gather absolutely everything from the DNC and clinton campaign and make that all public at the same time.

        If we are going to change the standards – then lets do that.
        Accross the board.

        I would suggest a better approach would be to have Mueller testify.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 7:02 pm

        Robby,

        You contradict yourself all over.

        I do not like Barr,. I do not trust Barr. I do not think he is going to clean up DOJ/FBI

        Obama corrupted DOJ/FBI – we had a AG who openly admitted he was the presidents wingman. Lynch was supposed to clean that up. The evidence is that she did not.

        Not only did Obama corrupt DOJ/FBI but that corruption persisted into the Trump administation and to some extent continues. Nor is it confined to the DOJ/FBI.

        The people voted to “drain the swamp” – a significant part of this is the swamp creatures fighting back.

        Neither Wray, nor Barr are the people who are going to drain the swamp.

        I think that Mueller and Barr are wrong about many things.
        I do not however think they are evil or corrupt.

        It will take longer than you want – but you will likely get your transparency.
        But your remarks make it clear than you do not actually trust Mueller and Barr.

        That is sort of OK – I do not either. But I do not pretend that I trust those in government,
        you do. Further while I do not trust that Mueller will not persecute the innocent,
        I absolutely 100% trust that he will not whitewash the guilty.
        The same with Barr.

        No Nepalitano is wrong. For numerous reasons.

        The first being Mueller prosecuted crap that did not come close the the reasonable doubt standard from the start.
        If Mueller had even a bad allegation – someone would have been indicted and prosecuted.

        Mueller is one of the more egregious in prosecuting things that are not even solid enough to investigate. But Napalitona knows better. Prosecutors DO NOT decline to prosecute if they can not meet the “reasonable doubt” standard. They decline to prosecute when they have no case at all.

        What you will find is Mueller speculation – not actual evidence.

        It seems to be impossible for those here to understand that speculation is not evidence.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 29, 2019 7:31 pm

        “That is not a situation for trump and the GOP to be war whooping and backslapping about”

        Actually it very much is exacly that.

        YOU and democrats have soiled yourselves.
        Republicans did not do that to you.
        You did it to yourselves.

        You bet on lies and garbage, You made false accusations out the whazzo.
        And you STILL do not grasp that there is a giant gulf between incorrectly asserting that someone is incorrect, and incorrectly asserting they are a liar and a criminal.

        “and turning vindictive on their critics about.”
        Do republicans have the right to be vidictive here – ABSOLUTELY!!!

        When you make false accusations you had damn well better expect consequences.

        But more importantly, the investigation that actually needs to be done is the one of how our govenrment got sucked into this. How it became polticially weaponized that.

        If that is not throoughly investigated. It there are not serious consequences, it will happen again.

        “It is not a situation that did not deserve to be fully investigated.”

        There was not at anytime from the start to the finish sufficient basis for any investigation.

        If you think there is – then you beleive anyone can be investigated for anything purely by coming up with an anonymous rumor.
        And we are going to have a mess going forward.

        If you can not figure out that there NEVER was enough to justify an investigation,
        then we are all in serious trouble, and live in a police state where anyone can be investigated at any time for anything.

        I want that STOPPED. I do not care all that much about Trump.
        I do care about not having this happen again.
        Next Time it will not be Trump.

        Whatever you allow government to do to those you hate the most.
        that is what you can expect it will do to you.

        You should ALWAYS be thinking – what if this were me, that government was coming after.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 29, 2019 6:26 pm

      The Odds that Barr is lying are near zero.

      Generally I favor openness and transparency.
      Further I have little doubt that all of the Mueller report will ultimately get out.

      At the same time contra the claims of Robby and those on the left,
      this would be the OPPOSITE of what is normally done.

      I was falsely accused of a crime. The DA investigated, and did not bring charges.
      The accusation was made publicly – so I was defamed.
      But the “exoneration” consists solely in the DA failing to act.
      There was no public statement.

      In my instance the lack of action by the DA is actually harmful to me. I have a small portion of the “evidence” and reports and where useful I try to provide them to those who hold oppinions based on false allegations. But trying to get someone to read a coroner’s report is a futile task.

      Looking at the Mueller/Barr issues at the moment.
      While again I favor transparency, and I expect to get alot of material that will be damning to the DOJ/FBI. Ultimately either you trust Mueller/Barr or you do not.

      I did not Trust Mueller to properly follow the law. I had zero expectation that Trump would have bribed or otherwise corrupted him.

      If you do not Trust Muellers conclusions – you should not have allowed him to investigate.
      I opposed allowing him to investigate. I think Mueller is too obviously likely to persucute the innocent.

      I did near Jay or Robby or DD saying we can not Trust Mueller during the investigation.
      I did not hear them saying Mueller is a Trump crony.

      I did not like Barr either – he is another Mueller Crony.
      He has a view of what constitutes a crime, and specifically what constitutes obstruction that is broader by far than mine, though narrower than that of the left.
      But he does not have Mueller’s reputation as a pitt bull prosecuting innocent people.

      Regardless, if you did not trust him – you should not have confirmed him.

      I do not think Barr is going to be aggressive in investigating the political corruption in the FBI/DOJ/JNSA/CIA. that is far more important to me than anything else.

      I too would like as much of this released quickly as possible.

      But that is NOT the norms. That is NOT the law.

      As Trey Gowdy – the only republican I have heard speak against Transparency has said repeatedly:

      Prosecutors speak by indicting, filing charges, and in court.
      They do not speak through reports or the media.
      The presumption of innocence means unless a prosecutor beleives there is enough to charge and litigate, we should not even know that someone is accused, much less get to 2nd guess the prosecutor’s decision to prosecute.

      Trey also noted that dumping everything that Mueller has done, is essentially providing government paid for OPO research tot he democratic party.

      Mueller investigated a political campaign.
      His report is likely little different than the DNC email hacking – EXCEPT that instead of being done purportedly illegally by purported russians it would be done under color of law by our government.

      Should as an example everyone – including democrats get all of Stone’s emails ?
      These were not hacked and released to the press.
      These were subpoenad by the federal government.

  26. dduck12 permalink
    March 29, 2019 9:51 pm

    Nothing more embarrassing than your boss contradicting you in public:
    “WASHINGTON — President Trump criticized Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras on Thursday for accepting monetary aid from the United States but doing nothing in return, a day after his homeland security secretary struck what she described as a historic agreement with three of those same countries to help strengthen security on the United States’southwestern border.”

    • dhlii permalink
      March 30, 2019 5:24 am

      OMG, Trump is a day behind DHS!

      Impeach now!!!

    • April 1, 2019 8:52 am

      And, even more shocking, the Homeland Security secretary is now apparently empowered to sign treaties. And without Congressional ratification! Who knew?

      And according to the scoop by the NYT, the key takeaway is this:

      “The countries agreed to continue having conversations”

      Oh. Great.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 2:03 pm

        Thank you. Priscilla, good catch!

        All of this “Trump is an idiot, Trump lies, Trump is incompetent garbage” from the press and left wingnuts pretty much devolves to lies and misrepresentations.

        Basically spin on steroids i.e. “Trump is lying about X – if you ignore half the actual facts”

        If the media, the left, or #nevertrumper’s want to criticise policies, fine – I do not agree with many of Trump’s policies. It would be unusual to agree with all of ANY presidents policies.
        I criticized HARSHLY many of Obama’s policies, and I was not happy with alot of Bush’s either.

        But get the facts right if you want to be credible,

        And do not claim ANYONE is lying unless you are sufficiently sure, you are prepared to stake YOUR integrity on it.

        I have accused people, politicians and president of lying and being liars.
        But I do not do it lightly.

        I was very charitable regarding Obama when he was president.
        Specific statements about Healthcare were “lies” or more accurately broken promises.
        The statement that Benghazi was a spontaneous protest was a baldfaced lie.
        Clinton (and her staff’s) claims about her emails were lies – under oath.

  27. dduck12 permalink
    March 29, 2019 9:55 pm

    Part Two, Masochists needed to head Cabinet posts:
    “WH budget office, not DeVos, pushed for proposed Special Olympics cuts, official says”
    “Washington (CNN)The Education Department failed to include funding for the Special Olympics in its budget proposal this year after it was rebuffed by the White House’s budget office, a department official familiar with the process tells CNN.
    Department officials tried repeatedly to include the nearly $18 million
    Education Department staff were forced this week to watch Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos defend before Congress the unpopular proposed cuts that officials there had largely opposed, only to have the President roll back the cuts two days later. One staffer described the experience to others as the “week from hell.”
    https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/29/politics/devos-special-olympics-omb/

    • dhlii permalink
      March 30, 2019 5:31 am

      If the special olympics is widely popular – and I beleive it is.
      Then it should have no problems receiving funding through donations.
      If they ask I will likely donate.

      Charity is not the business of govenrment.
      There is no difference in the immorality of stealing to support something that is wildly popular and something that is not.

      Further if we are going to reduce the cost of government – there are going to ba alot of things like special olympics that many people like that will be cut.

      I want the sequester back!!

      Ultimately we are going to have to make choices – whether the issue is immigration or spending. We do not have the ability to have it all. And whatever public choices we make come at the expense of our individual choices.

      • April 1, 2019 9:27 am

        It is interesting that, if I am to believe the raft of hysterical posts on my Facebook page, Betsy DeVos continues to be one of the most hated, if not THE most hated, of Trump’s cabinet members.

        Education, whether it be school choice, federal funding of programs, or mandated testing, is a critical key to changing the culture and gaining control of the government, through the systematic propagandizing of generations of kids.

        The Special Olympics gets more private donation money than they know what to do with . The idea that the program would have to be ended, if it weren’t taxpayer funded, is ridiculous.

        But “Republicans don’t care about kids with special needs” is a great talking point.

      • April 1, 2019 11:11 am

        The Democrats never met an entitlement or social program they did not support.
        The Republicans never met an entitlement or social program they would repeal.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 2:39 pm

        Amen!

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 1, 2019 11:57 am

        Its not hard to explain why DeVos has, er, bad optics. She had no previous experience that qualified her to head the Education (or any other) department. Simply she is a politically connected right winger from a family of billionaires. The history of how the billions were made is not a pretty one either. So, when trumps cabinet of billionaires wants to make cuts in universally popular programs that affect teh little fish it does not have good political resonance. The fact that trump, DeVos and the administration have pointed fingers at each other and all appear to be denying that they ever had any intention of cutting the budget of the special olympics (but somehow, somewhere the cuts got into the budget and apparently have been trying to get in for several years under devos), well its keystone cops time.

        I have sympathy with the idea that the education is used at times for politically correct brainwashing, conservatives have a legitimate beef. But appointing someone like devos to lead the charge makes it very very easy to spin against the trump administration on education. Just more incompetence.

        “DeVos is married to Dick DeVos, the former CEO of the multi-level marketing company Amway, and is the daughter-in-law of Amway’s billionaire co-founder, Richard DeVos.[8][9] Her brother, Erik Prince, a former U.S. Navy SEAL officer, is the founder of Blackwater USA.[10] Their father is Edgar Prince, founder of the Prince Corporation.[11][12] In 2016, the family was listed by Forbes as the 88th-richest in America, with an estimated net worth of $5.4 billion.[13]”

        Amway is pretty much a scam. Blackwater are mercenaries. So… its very easy to dislike Betsy DeVos.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 2:57 pm

        God, you are tedious.

        “experience” in government is a DISQUALIFIER.

        Do you really think that people like McCabe, Comey, Reich, Cuomo, (or their equivalents on the right) have a clue what they are doing.

        The mess that is our government – local state and federal, is a direct consequence of the fact that government – including politics has become a career.

        At the top levels of every institution the fundimental task is the SAME, the efficient use of scarce resources to create the greatest value. Citibank, the local school-board, the Department of Energy, Ford – the job is the same. The bigger the institution the LESS important the basic understanding of the niche the institution is in and the more important fundimentals that are NOT specific to that niche are.
        The united states has never had a president with experience in education, the military, energy, foreign relations, law enforcement, emergency management, …..

        Clinton as an example had massive experience in government, her resume listed job after job, but it had no noteable accomplishments and many noteable failures.

        One of the reasons that Trump is particularly suited to be president and doing much better than I expected is that he has succeeded in many different ventures in life.
        He has figured out how to get to what is important even when dealing with problems he has never seen before. There are many facetts to that – one is being able to find competent people, and knowing when to trust them. Trump’s worst appointments, have been those where he has felt compelled to appoint people with “experience” rather than people with competence.

        Despite the fact that she is the most hated member of Trump’s cabinet, DeVos has mostly managed to be effective and accomplish things mostly quietly. She has also avoided scandal of consequence. Like Price she runs arround everywhere in in a jet. Unlike price she PAYS FOR IT HERSELF.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 3:01 pm

        There is only one way to actually make billions of dollars – that is to create value.

        If you do not like amway and their products – do not buy them. It is that simple.
        Neither their products nor their business model are for everyone.
        But for many people Amway provided a way to improve their lives.
        Some did alittle better, some did alot better.
        Some failed. Success is not a right. If Amway is not right for you – work elsewhere.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 3:02 pm

        More information on Blackwater, and that “evil” Eric Prince.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 3:22 pm

        BTW you claim that DeVos has no educational experience – that is complete crap.

        DeVos has been one of the leading figures in charter schools, vouchers and the school choice movement for over 2 decades.
        So yes, I think at would be hard to find a Sec Ed. who was better qualified that someone at the vanguard of a very successful educational movement that has greatly benefited minorities,

        That has been a steep uphill battle that has been very successful.
        The vast majority of her actual opposition from the left stems entirely from that.

        School Choice is a huge threat to the democratic party. It actively seeks to return control of schools and education to PARENTS, not government bureaucrats.

        While the left wants to pretend that school choice is a sap to evangelicals seeking to “save” their children from “humanist” public schools and subject them to religious indoctrination, the greatest successes of school choice have been with poor and minorities.

        In my own state – cyber charters, something I know alot about as both of my kids were cyber chartered, have faced intense public scruntiny and attack.

        The average performance of cyber charted students below that of statewide averages.
        That sounds bad, until you regress for the fact that 60% of cyber chartered students come form the worst 10% of school districts in the state.
        Cyber Charters have been the best hope for poor minority single mothers to assure their children do better than they do, that they get a good education, and that they stay out of drugs and gangs.

        It is highly likely that the recent Republican success in FL – Particularly DeSantis’s election as governor tipped because DeSantis did significantly better than expected with cyber chartered minority voters. DeSantis strongly supported Cyber Charters, Gillium promised to end them.

        Not only does school choice work well for minorities, but there is strong evidence that it substantially benefits the local schools. Traditional public schools that have to compete with Charters are improving.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 3:37 pm

        Do you ever bother to actually learn something about what you are saying – before saying it ?

        Do you know anything at all about Blackwater – besides that they are an “evil” military contractor ?

        Do you actually know anything about Amway ? Or any of the other “evil” “multilevel” marketting programs that have had long term success as well as provided an oportunity for those people with the right skill set to succeed in ways they could not possibly have otherwise. You can joke about Mary Kay or Avon or Amway, but that was the only oportunity open for alot of people. The left makes much of the fact that most participants in MLM, make very little – confusing the fact that in most MLM companies, their customers are often nominally associates.

        My mother was part of Amway. She did not need to be, she was a successful business woman, she made no money from Amway, she did almost nothing to sell their products, she participated primarily to buy their products as a discount, as did myriads of other people.

        The left seems to be completely incapable of understanding that it is nearly impossible to engage in fraud in a sustained free exchange relationship. There is only one datapoint that is meaningful. Do people have the ability to walk away freely ?
        That is it. So long as that is the case it is not the business of govenrment or anyone else.

        If some arrangement you freely participate in only brings in an income of $5000/ year or $1.50 per hour – so long as you are free to choose otherwise SO WHAT ?

        Why is it so hard for those on the left to grasp that there are numerous components to actual value beyond wages ?

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 2:13 pm

        If the Special Olympics asks me for money – I will likely donate.

        But I have ZERO problem at all getting the government ENTIRELY out of the business of Charity.

        BTW conservatives give 3 times as much to charity as progressives – even if you discount the fact that conservatives also contribute to churches.

        I have given money, time, and materials to a variety of different causes.
        and I know many others that do to.
        My wife is a member of probably the most liberal church in our county and I often provide meals for the “homeless”, support for immigrants, materials and time for women’s shelter’s …
        But most of the support for those and other charities in my communitee come from very conservative churches.

        Regardless, Charity is NOT the business of government.

        Aside from the fact that unjustified taxation is theft, there are other very important reasons for this.

        There is near infinite need for charity. It is ultimately necescary to make tough choices (just as it is regarding immigration), Politicians treat money as free and therefore are inclined to give it away and to be very lax regarding assuring that it is used wisely.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 2:20 pm

        The federal department of education should be CLOSED. It serves no valid purpose at all.

        To the extent that we allow government into education at all, it is NOT a federal role – AT ALL.

        Of course DeVos is hated, she is a highly successful independent business woman.

        Just as the left has a hierachy of victimization, they have a hierarchy of victimizers.
        At that top of that hierarchy are people who started successful businesses,
        followed by those who own them,
        as evil as the left sees the CEO’s of big businesses, the people who actually created and/or own big businesses are worse. Especially if they are unrepentant entrepeneurs.

    • April 1, 2019 2:46 pm

      Roby, you make a valid point, but it is one that could be applied to political appointments throughout American history, and to both parties pretty much equally.

      That said, DeVos, came into the job as a well-known supporter of charter schools, an advocate for school choice, and an opponent of the way that Title 9 had been implemented. So, it’s not as if Trump chose her out of a random group of billionaires.

      And, it’s interesting that you consider Blackwater, which is, in fact, a for profit military security firm, that pays mostly ex-military up to $1500+ a day for putting their lives on the line to protect American military installations, and to train foreign troops to fight for their own governments, just a bunch of “mercenaries.” Just like Prince is just a billionaire, who happens to be an ex-Navy SEAL.

      Hey, those guys working for private security firms, protecting our ME military bases do make entirely too much money, huh? I can see paying actors like Jussie Smollett over $1M a year, because they pretend to be brave guys on TV. But the actual, real brave guys shouldn’t make near that much…no way.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 6:44 pm

        DeVos is not merely an advocate for School Choice she is one of the most significant leaders of the most successfull change in schools in a century.

        Prince a mercenary ? Maybe, but he is a very successful Mercenary.
        Even Obama used private military security – because for many tasks they do a better job, cheaper than the military, and they pay much better,

  28. dduck12 permalink
    March 29, 2019 11:59 pm

    What’s Trumps point in threatening to shut the border? Ain’t gonna happen. Fake threats, fake threats. Goes along with his fake promises to: we will replace the ACA with a better plan.
    Of course after three years, there ain’t no F====== plan. Fake plan, fake plan.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 30, 2019 5:34 am

      As far as I am concerned a complete repeal of ACA is replacing it with a better plan.

      But I will agree with you that is NOT what Trump promised.

      That was a stupid move in response to a stupid democratic ploy.
      The nonsense that to repeal PPACA you had to offer something new to replace it rather than returning to the prior status quo.

      I will however note that Republicans have made several small but significant changes in healthcare since 2016 so it is arguable that there was a better plan implimented.

  29. dhlii permalink
    March 30, 2019 3:52 am

  30. dhlii permalink
    March 30, 2019 6:11 am

    Barr has responded to some of the left’s nonsense.

    The Mueller report – less whatever must by law be redacted will be released to Congress by mid April. Barr also stated that Trump and the Whitehouse council have opted to NOT review the report prior to public release for material that would be privileged.
    Leaving that decision entirely up to Barr.

    From the start of this – Trump’s LEGAL strategy has been full cooperation with Mueller.
    This was set by McGahn and Sekolow at the start. While Trump has groused and railed, he has NEVER gone to court to block Mueller. He has NEVER asserted executive priviledge and he has just told Mueller than he does not intend to regarding anything in the Mueller report.

    So that you understand – ANY communications between Trump and a subordinate are privildged. The only time I am aware of that the courts have ever allowed communications with the president (as president) to be made public or even turned over to congress, were watergate where there was a credible claim that the President was part of a criminal conspiracy in the whitehouse.

    This means that all communications between Trump and Comey, Trump and Rosenstein, or Trump and anyone else in the whitehouse could be provided to congress and the public.
    Aparently Trump has also waived privildge with respect to whitehouse counsel.
    That means all communications between Trump and his lawyers and Trump’s lawyers and Mueller may be made public.

    It is still possible that Barr might redact some of that material on his own. But Trump has specified that the decision as to what Barr can release will be left up to Barr. No one in The Whitehouse will not be consulted at all.

    My guess is that Trump is setting up to declassify the FISA application as well as massive amounts of what the House Intel Comittee uncovered in 2017 and 2018.

    My Guess is that Trump is betting that whatever minor embarrassments remain in the Mueller report are inconsequential in comparision to what has not yet been exposed regarding the investigation itself.

    https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/29/politics/barr-letter-mueller-release/index.html

  31. dhlii permalink
    March 30, 2019 6:13 am

    Several here continue to cite the Dec. 2016 Intelligence Communitee report as evidence that The Russians interfered with the 2016 election.

    The news of the week is that the basis for the IC assessement was ….. Wait for it ….
    The Steele Dossier which was provided to the IC by …… John Brennan.

    If the Steele Dossier is crap – EVERYTHING that rests on it is CRAP.

    So much for the IC assessment.

  32. dhlii permalink
    March 30, 2019 6:40 am

    Since we are addressing Trump’s emergency funding of the wall it is worth noting that
    The Obama Treasury department paid the US Green Climate fund $500M in 2016 with absolutely no congressional authorization to do so. No emergency no nothing.
    Just took $500M from budgeted items and gave it to the UN

    • Jay permalink
      March 30, 2019 4:05 pm

      Trump won’t take that laying down! He’ll make sure to do worse!

  33. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    March 30, 2019 12:12 pm

    This is an information war and a PR spin war. The Barr 4 pages were part of the trump side of it. They were intended as a blitzkrieg to win public opinion over to the idea that trump was completely exonerated and the whole process was illegitimate in the first place. They hoped to put an end to this issue. They failed. I think they really seriously blew it with their obvious exageration of the meaning of even the Barr 4 pages and then their over the top attacks of schiff. They have convinced almost no one who was not already a full on trump supporter.

    https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/436440-poll-just-36-percent-say-mueller-report-clears-trump

    • March 30, 2019 3:27 pm

      https://www.apnews.com/4e8bd9beb0d54a4d9ca3152d26bb0686
      Trump is cracking up. Fake empathy, fake empathy.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 30, 2019 6:02 pm

        Trump could volunteer to fight Ebola in west Africa – and you would still find a way to criticize.

        Regardless, It would be hard for Trump’s empathy to be fake as Trump did not claim to be making a decision based on “empathy”, He made it based on the US interests.

        But reading your own material has never been your forte.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 30, 2019 5:58 pm

      Back to pretending polls are facts.

      Absolutely the Mueller report CLEARS Trump.
      That is a fact. We do not determine facts by polls.

      As to the polls – they will come arround. It will take time.

      Regardless, I will note again!!!!

      For a few days after this first broke, you were busy trying to disown your own past views.
      Telling us all you never really beleived any of this.

      Now you are back trying to Sell TDS.

      But the FACTS are NOTHING THERE. NEVER WAS.

      In fact – though not from Barr/Mueller the more we learn the more damming this all is.

      We now know the primary, possibly only source of the vaunted Intelligence committee report. Was the Steele Dossier and that was foist on the committee by Brennan.

      What the H’ is our intelligence community doing using garbage from a political campaign as an intelligence source ?

      We were told BY BRENNAN and CLAPPER that they had seen things we had not seen.
      Yeah – The Steele Dossier.

      What are we paying the NSA and CIA for ? To read politically sourced gossip from ex brits with an axe to grind ?

      WHERE IS THE BEEF ?

      I have no doubt that the Mueller report when released will spawn more garbage from left wing nuts. At the bare minimum it will go through an assortment of claims and then demonstrate how they were investigated and that nothing of substance was found.

      As you can rarely prove a negative, we will get claims that Mueller is not conclusive.

      You do not seem to understand how insidiously EVIL this entire mess is.

      There is a reason that the burden of proving crimes and moral misconduct rests with those making the claim. And there is a reason that false claims must discredit those who make them. And that is how corrosive and destructive unproven claims are.

  34. Jay permalink
    March 30, 2019 4:03 pm

    Capitalism Plus

    • dhlii permalink
      March 30, 2019 6:22 pm

      Please save us from idiocy.

      The “happiness index” is absolute garbage created to produce a specific result.
      It is propoganda.

      If you actually beleive that those “socialist countries” are so much happier – emigrate.
      No one is stopping you.

      BTW it should be trivially aparent that so called happiness indexes are bogus – specifically because free people do not actually choose and stick with socialism – or even socialism lite.

      Poor people from “shithole” countries immigrate to europe – most would prefer to come to the US. Actual citizens of those “socialist” countries on net look to go elsewhere – particularly the US.

      Rather that trust what some elites using a system of measure intended to produce the result they want – I prefer to judge peoples overall satisfaction by their free choices.
      That is the ONLY accurate measure of people self judgement of their own lives.

      Past that, why are we having this discussion ? There is no debate here. Free markets won.
      Socialism LOST, not once, but every single time.

      The left likes to use Healthcare as some marker. Yet those “european social democracies” for the most part have less socialist healthcare systems than we do. They have mandated health insurance – that is the primary difference – they also mandate that the out of pocket payment for healthcare services must be high enough to diminish moral hazard.

      Generalizing about Europe is difficult – because their systems vary from the disasterous nationalized arrangement of the NHS through to almost completely free market systems.

      But as a rule most european healthcare is MORE free market than the US.
      We have spent 50 years having government F’up our healthcare.
      Pretending that is free markets is deceiptful.

      More generally the ascendance of free markets directly corresponds to massive rises in standard of living. There is absolutely nothing in all of economics as well studied and well documented.

      Anyone trying to sell socialism today in any form is just plain an idiot. They can not possibly have looked arround the world, they can not have looked at any data – they can not have seen the world during their lifetime as it is.

      Nothing ever has come close to delivering the benefits that free markets have.

      Maher’s nonsense about europe – while europe has lots of problems and it is certainly not a pure free market, and it is less free than the US and has bigger government than the US, it is still overall fundimentally CAPITALIST.

      It is that because unless you are stupid or evil, it is obvious that nothing in existance has ever come close. NOTHING.

      I do not need to trash Europe, just note that they are slightly less free than the US and have slightly larger government and they are slightly less well off.

      And no, I have little interest in how sole elites drowning in confirmation bias rank the “happiness” of different countries. Real people already answer that question through their own choices, not polls, not surveys.

      • Jay permalink
        March 30, 2019 8:56 pm

        “Please save us from idiocy.”

        I’ve tried, but you keep bloviating …

      • dhlii permalink
        March 31, 2019 2:45 am

        You probably can not end the idiocy – but you can end a large part of the idiocy here.

        Some recommendations.

        Do not assert facts you can not prove, that comes at the expense of your credibility
        Do not make moral claims you can not prove – that comes at the expense of your integrity.

        A lie is substantialy more than an error of fact,.

        lie: noun – a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive; an intentional untruth; a falsehood.

  35. dhlii permalink
    March 30, 2019 6:26 pm

    “Trump won’t take that laying down! He’ll make sure to do worse!”

    And yet he has not. I wish trump had not played this emergency game. I wish he had just continued the shutdown. Regardless, His emergency declaration was within the law.

    The Obama administration’s 1/2B for the UN greens was a violation of the law.
    Thus far Trump has not violated any laws – even though you keep screaming about your fear of that.

  36. dduck12 permalink
    March 30, 2019 8:36 pm

    Trump goes lower and lower with his lies.
    President Donald Trump is misrepresenting the circumstances of a 7-year-old migrant girl’s death as he seeks to steer any potential blame for it away from his administration.

    Trump, after mockingly painting asylum seekers as a “con job” in a rally the previous night, asserted on Friday that Jakelin Caal Maquin was given no water by her father during their trek to a remote border area and that the dad acknowledged blame for his daughter’s death on Dec. 8. Those assertions are not supported by the record.

    TRUMP: “I think that it’s been very well stated that we’ve done a fantastic job. … The father gave the child no water for a long period of time – he actually admitted blame.” — to reporters Friday.

    THE FACTS: An autopsy report released Friday found that Guatemalan girl died of a bacterial infection just more than a day after being apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol. The El Paso County Medical Examiner’s office said traces of streptococcus bacteria were found in Jakelin’s lungs, adrenal gland, liver, and spleen, and she experienced a “rapidly progressive infection” that led to the failure of multiple organs.

    Neither the autopsy report, nor accounts at the time by Customs and Border Protection , spoke of dehydration. And through family lawyers, Nery Gilberto Caal Cuz said after his girl’s death that he made sure she had food and water as they traveled through Mexico.”
    https://www.foxnews.com/us/ap-fact-check-trump-twists-facts-of-a-migrant-girls-death.amp

    • dhlii permalink
      March 31, 2019 2:33 am

      So someone hauls their child thousands of miles over difficult conditions.
      Maybe they get water maybe they don’t.
      Probably they get raped – repeatedly.

      And you want to blame Trump ?

      According to your story the girl died of a bacterial infection less than 24hrs after crossing into the US. In otherwords UNLESS CBP caught her and QUICKLY figured out what was wrong – she was DEAD no matter what.

      I have no idea if the father took responsibility.
      But I know that the responsibility is his.

      She did not get the infection from being detained by CBP.

      So let me ask you – if someone breaks into your house, who is responsible if something bad happens to them ?

      While I expect CBP to do their best to take care of the people crossing the border.
      Particularly the kids, because no matter how badly they or their parents screwed up, we would all like to preclude death as the consequence.

      But expecting CBP to do their best is not the same as obligating them, or makeing them responsible.

      I would further note that one of the problems right now is that democrats in the house chose to cut CBP’s budget for facilities to handle these people – in an effort to force Trump to release them.

      I would say that PELOSI is the one responsible for the shortages at the border.

      BTW you do understand based on the facts you provided, this child’s only hope of living was CBP. If she has not been caught she would have been dead 100% certain.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 31, 2019 2:40 am

      You are also keeping up this moral garbage of asserting that inaccuracy with respect to facts is the same as lying.

      Are you saying Trump knew this girl died of a bacterial infection, but instead tried to blame dehydration ?

      BTW why are we to presume that if the autopsy found a deadly bacterial infection they ever tested for dehydration ? Or if they did, that they reported it.

      Autopsies are to determing the cause of death – they are not physicals.

      My father had an autopsy when he died. That autopsy determines that he died of pneumonia,
      Because of other allegations the autopsy also reported that he not been given any unperscribed medication in the 6 months prior to his death.

      The autopsie did not mention the fact that he had had many strokes and would likely have died from those in a few months.

      Regardless, error – if Trump was actually in error is NOT the same as lying.

      Or can I accuse you of lying everytime you are not perfectly accurate about a fact ?

  37. dduck12 permalink
    March 30, 2019 9:25 pm

    CBP is trying hard to control this mess, without adequate medical help at the border. They are not medically trained to detect illnesses, and can just guess when non-bleeding out people are over the border. They have to assign TWO CBP cops to transport and guard any sick migrants to the overloaded emergency rooms along the border. I saw this in San Diego. They were there for five hours when my wife was in the ER one night.
    Who’s watching the border then?
    To free up CBP personnel, Trump should have sent medical units to the border, not just combat marines to lay razor wire.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 31, 2019 2:51 am

      “CBP is trying hard to control this mess,”
      Correct.

      “without adequate medical help at the border.”
      Correct – Pelosi cut the budget for pretty much everything at the border.

      “They are not medically trained to detect illnesses, and can just guess when non-bleeding out people are over the border.”

      So how is it Trump’s fault that we are being deluged with sick people at the border ?

      “They have to assign TWO CBP cops to transport and guard any sick migrants to the overloaded emergency rooms along the border. I saw this in San Diego. They were there for five hours when my wife was in the ER one night.”

      Have you ever gotten through an ER in 5 hours ? I haven’t.

      “Who’s watching the border then?
      “To free up CBP personnel, Trump should have sent medical units to the border, not just combat marines to lay razor wire.”

      Actually the razor wire is much more effective. You do not seem to understand Trump is trying to address the CAUSE of the problem – the ease with which people can cross at the border. The more difficult you make crossing the fewer people try, and they fewer die doing so.

      If you do not want dead children at the border – the last thing you want to do is make things more attractive.
      Obama made things easier for unaccompanied minors and within 3 months the number of unaccompanied minors increased by a factor of 10. He ultimately backed down. But that did not make the news.

  38. dduck12 permalink
    March 31, 2019 3:26 pm

    Trump doesn’t cheat, he is just in error.
    ““To say ‘Donald Trump cheats’ is like saying ‘Michael Phelps swims,’” writes Rick Reilly in the new book “Commander in Cheat: How Golf Explains Trump” (Hachette Book Group), out Tuesday. “He cheats at the highest level. He cheats when people are watching and he cheats when they aren’t. He cheats whether you like it or not. He cheats because that’s how he plays golf … if you’re playing golf with him, he’s going to cheat.”

    Reilly, a former Sports Illustrated columnist who has played with Trump in the past, spoke to dozens of players — both amateur and professional — to recount some of the president’s worst cons on the course, starting with his declared handicap of 2.8.”
    https://nypost.com/2019/03/30/trump-is-the-worlds-worst-cheat-at-golf-players-and-celebs-say/

    • dhlii permalink
      March 31, 2019 3:35 pm

      Again, if you are going to make a moral claim – then you had better be able to prove it.
      Unsupported assertions, by yourself and others are not evidence.

      Past that, I have no idea what “cheating” in golf actually is. or how it is relevant to anything else.

      This “the president cheats at golf” story has been run of every single president that has played golf. As has the one that the president always wins at golf (or anything else competitive), The same is true of pretty much every other powerful person. Wise people do not beat a senator at golf or anything else.

    • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
      March 31, 2019 3:56 pm

      dduck It reminds me of the story that Ille Nastase told of playing tennis with the Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu. When one plays a friendly match of tennis they “call the lines” on their own side, is the ball in or out. One can cheat if they are so inclined. Nicolae Ceaușescu considered himself a fine tennis player and would command Nastase to play with him and then Nicolae Ceaușescu would “beat” Nastase. These over entitled people are all the same.

      Kings, rich fools, despots, this is how they deal with people.

      Now, I am not saying that I am wishing that trump comes to the same end that Nicolae Ceaușescu and his wife did. 😉 I will be satisfied with the western form of what goes around comes around.

      • dhlii permalink
        March 31, 2019 5:01 pm

        I have near zero doubt that Trump “wins” all or nearly all of the golf matches he plays.

        As has every other past president and most politicians.

        You and other posters make an issue of “cheating”. Fine – demonstrate that whoever you are accusing actually “cheats” – meaning that his conduct is significantly outside the norms for golfers.

        I have no idea what your “Ceaușescu” story means. Assertions about line call cheating are incredibly subjective and Ceaușescu defeating superior players is trivial to explain.

        Would you beat Ceaușescu in Tennis ? Or any other sport ?

        I am highly dubious of claims that any powerful person cheats in sports like Tennis or golf.
        They do not need to. Wise people do not try to beat them.

        Who in their right mind would beat Obama at Basketball ? Even if you did not consciously try to lose to him – would you be capable of playing aggressively enough against Obama to risk fouling him ?

        Nor is this limited to presidents and Senators. I am sure Trump was smart enough to lose when he needed the approval of some powerful person for a project, and I am sure that even as a private developer, he always won when playing people who needed him.

        Personally I do not take golf seriously as a sport. Outside of the pros golf seems to be entirely about things that are NOT golf. It is about deal making and negotiating, and establishing dominance hierarchies.

    • dhlii permalink
      March 31, 2019 4:07 pm

      “Trump doesn’t cheat, he is just in error.”

      You claim not to suffer from TDS, but your life self evidently revolves around Trump.

      I offered a general standard:

      Avoid errors in fact if you wish to be credible.
      Avoid false accusations if you wish to have integrity.

      Absolutely Trump falls short on those – I am very hard pressed to think of a politician and particularly president that has credibility or integrity.

      Is Trump, Obama, Bush, Clinton or Gingrich, Reid, McConnell, Schumer, Pelosi the standard you aspire to ?

      If so – congratulations. You have succeeded.

      “Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.”

      When you make constant false accusations, you ultimately elevate the person you are attacking, and diminish yourself.

      Is that your goal ?

      It Trump is actually as bad as you claim you make him look much better than he is by making false accusations, and you make yourself look worse.

      Making dubious – as opposed to clearly false accusations is little better.
      Maybe Trump does cheat at golf, maybe he cheats at everything.
      But why am I to trust an allegation made without evidence by people with little credibility or integrity because they have made so many and obviously false allegations.

      Does no one remember the story of the little boy who cried wolf ?

  39. dduck12 permalink
    March 31, 2019 3:36 pm

    Another NYC Mega phony:
    “‘Her heart is not in The Bronx’: Ocasio-Cortez’s constituents turn against her”
    “Amid her zeal to save the world with the Green New Deal, Rep. ­Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has ­ignored residents in her own Bronx back yard.

    “I thought AOC would be our savior, but that’s not the case,” complained Roxanne Delgado, a local activist who said she has tried for months to get in touch with the congresswoman for help saving an animal shelter and to clean up parks in the district.

    Delgado, 40, says she has made numerous calls to Ocasio-Cortez’s offices in Washington and Queens and sent a barrage of tweets after the freshman lawmaker encouraged residents during a recent visit to a Bronx public library to hit her up on social media.
    But she’s heard nothing back.”
    “By contrast, he said, residents’ needs received much more attention under Rep. Joe Crowley, whom Ocasio-Cortez unseated in a surprise primary upset last year.

    The longtime congressman’s Bronx district representative, Thomas Messina, regularly attended community board meetings, according to Vitaliano.

    “Tommy cared about us,” Vitaliano said.

    Although Ocasio-Cortez tweeted about improving mail service in The Bronx this month, Vitaliano said he was still experiencing problems and waiting for her office to arrange a meeting with post-office management.”

  40. dhlii permalink
    March 31, 2019 3:48 pm

    I see that the period of embarrassment for being caught spreading lies was very short.

    For a few days after the news that there would be no more indictments, that there Mueller report found no collusion, there was atleast the hints of quiet and rationality.

    Robby assured us that he had never really beleived that Trump had colluded with Russia, but that the investigation was important and justified.

    No one has to this day answered “justified by WHAT ?”

    The rest of those suffering from TDS were mostly quiet.

    How quickly that has all come to an end.

    Is that would moral people do ? Get caught lying and then double down ?

    Probably 90% of the posts here are “Trump lies”.

    At this moment it should be pretty clear that we have had 3 years of posts, and news stories full of accusations. And that those accusations have all been LIES. That pretty much everything Trump has said about any of that has been TRUTH.

    Even if nearly every other thing Trump says was a lie and nearly every other thing the TDS’rs said about Trump was true – Trump would not be close to the biggest liar.

    Further whatever standard you have used to assert Trump “lies” if applied to yourselves, would condemn you too.

    I do not know if some of what you say about Trump might be true. But it is self evident that most peoples attacks on Trump are true of themselves.

  41. dhlii permalink
    March 31, 2019 4:45 pm

    Apparently some of the criticism of Biden is gaining some traction.

    Biden might in many ways be the least bad choice for democrats, he is NOT politically extreme, though he is left of center. He has a strong appeal to the working class Trump supporters who abandoned the democratic party, he has an actual working class background.

    At the same time though his rhetoric regarding women is tamer than Trump’s he has a long history of provable conduct that is worse than Trump’s.

    For those who think that Trump is the anti-christ – evil in every way. Why is it so difficult for democrats to come up with a candidate that is clearly superior ?

    • March 31, 2019 6:17 pm

      But Jimminy, everyone says I am just “in error”, so why does my nose keep getting longer?
      Well Pinnochio, maybe “everyone” is lying too.
      SATIRE

      • dhlii permalink
        March 31, 2019 11:18 pm

        DD,

        if it were as simple to tell who was lying by checking their noses, YOU would be shocked when you looked arround at how many of the noses of those you trust were tree branches, and how many of those you do not were knubs.

        if you are in doubt about whether someone is lying or merely wrong, you are free to choose as you wish, but you would be wise to assume the latter, the consequences of your being wrong are much smaller.

        The entire country has listened for 3 years to the tsunami of Trump/Russia collusion.
        Those echoing that have been proven wrong.
        Those accusing Trump of lying about it were lying.

        By endlessly repeating a lie, and by accusing those who denied the lie of being liars,
        you ruin your own reputation and enhance theirs.

    • Jay permalink
      March 31, 2019 8:43 pm

      What ‘provable’ conduct worse than Trump are you referring to?
      Or are you likely bloviating BS as usual?

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 12:16 am

        “What ‘provable’ conduct worse than Trump are you referring to?
        Or are you likely bloviating BS as usual?”

        Really ?
        Am I to presume you have lived under a rock for the past several years ?

        You can find video of Biden’s unwelcome and cringe worthy conduct towards women on Youtube – LOTS of it. Presumably you missed the recent New York article.

        https://www.thecut.com/2019/03/an-awkward-kiss-changed-how-i-saw-joe-biden.html?utm_source=tw#access_token=rBC-p1Dyq12-sD9y0OYAWLwXxVIKyJ2G&scope=openid%20profile%20email&expires_in=7200&token_type=Bearer&state=26uz50BB5qUDDwOdYyzv-SohS4559mPz&id_token=eyJ0eXAiOiJKV1QiLCJhbGciOiJSUzI1NiIsImtpZCI6Ik1FSXlNVFZETTBaQlEwUTJSVUV6UkVVMlFqWTNNRU13TVRaR09UWTFNVE0yUTBZeE16RXpOQSJ9.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.baTZMe-LvJg628iW3PwmlcFUdWNFOuj2ANMKeDaqlXR-EQSFUmR9aZqIsoslkD6O-87Qo_6yu_q_YATh3ELcjhoUwUsVxwNu6QOQfNb5fsOObI0VJU5RcgvmmREAyWE_oI_o61TKtWh_X8CGERALcfPxBvGU3eskq3RzsMOX3cH8C12fMP2n7F5ie9lliRBlqDYpTpqvuKVjSl5viCRdibULJWme-017iFIZgLmKZ2HgLXhVQFiYiE4-YnuY7a47IFhwBF_nXPsFBCwx1nrRzoyhtHXRQuf4tLudXLPUZXvrMpwLxcbudamRamNMroOYe_O20-u_VJnvyYtnRrunxA

        Biden does NOT do this to men. Further he has done it to girls young much younger than Roy Moore was accused of harrasing.

        There is not alot of “provable” conduct regarding Trump.

        There is evidence – like the Access Hollywood tapes of offensive speach.

        There is evidence that Trump was unfaithful to his wives.

        There are credible allegations of (vanilla) consensual sexual conduct.

        There are allegations of leering, and less consensual conduct.
        Allegations are concerning, but they are not the same as proof.

    • Jay permalink
      March 31, 2019 8:45 pm

      This Biden Me-Too Moment was just repudiated.

    • April 1, 2019 11:18 am

      Throughout a lifetime of politics, Biden has accomplished nothing of note. He was fished out of the trash by Obama, who needed to appease the establishment wing of the party, after defeating Hillary for the presidential nomination in 2008 . Other than being a gaffe prone creeper, he was a non-entity as vp. Now, he’s pandering to everyone on the left, because he is a white male. Ugh. He wo

      • April 1, 2019 12:01 pm

        But Biden is thenleast dangerious of the Democrats running.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 1, 2019 12:44 pm

        “fished out of the trash by Obama”

        You have even picked up trump’s style of speech. Ugg.

      • April 1, 2019 12:59 pm

        Heh, I did use the same term. It was unintentional…I may have heard about Trump’s remark, although I’m quite sure that I have seen similar figures of speech used by others to refer to the fact that Biden was pretty much a dead-ender at the time that Obama chose him as his running mate. In fact, Biden himself has joked that he’s never been gainfully employed.

        It’s a figure of speech. Sue me.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 1, 2019 2:01 pm

        trump said the same thing more or less about Mattis as Mattis was on the way out. So easy for trump and his followers to use words to call a full and well lived life inconsequential, rhetorically. Its a thing I loath about trump and trumpism. cheap empty rhetoric, fully accepted by the trump side, fully detested by a larger group of Americans, which is a good part of the reason trump has spent his entire presidency at least 10 points underwater. Words are actions.

      • April 1, 2019 2:15 pm

        Not quite. He pointed out that Obama had fired Mattis from CentCom without even calling him personally, while he had appointed him SecDef and allowed him to resign on principle, rather than fire him over their policy differences as Obama did. All true, like it or not.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 6:18 pm

        Priscilla, No! No! No!,

        You can not let truth get in the way of a good narrative.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 5:44 pm

        Robby;

        Though you are not the worst here, you should not be complaining about the insults of others.

        Either ad hominem is acceptable to you, or its not.

        If it is, then you have nothing to criticise Trump for.
        If it isnt – then your won remarks are at odds.
        Further, you seem to think that you can demand that everyone else condemn whatever offends you – if Trump’s insults bother you – then why aren’t you condemning everyone else – including posters here who respond to everything with insults ?
        That is not my standard – but you have said it is yours.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 6:01 pm

        Each of us gets to determine for ourselves whether our lives are full and well lived.

        I have no idea what that means in the context of our appraisal of others.

        As Politicians go, aside from the groping Biden is mostly innocuous and unimpressive.
        Obviously merely getting to be a senator is consequential. But by the standard most of us would use to measure a person for the shoes of President, Biden’s feet are pretty small.

        Specific to Trump, I am very hard pressed to think of any one Trump has criticized that did not attack him first.

        In many ways Trump is very predictable. Do not attack him personally, and he will not attack you. Rand Paul and Trump are pretty far apart politically. Yet Rand is sometimes called the “trump whisperer”. Rand will disagree with Trump on policy, but he does not make his criticism personal, and Trump leaves him alone, and is even friendly with him.

        Beyond that – sorry Robby but I call FOUL.
        Trump’s successful bid for president would have been impossible but for the decades long efforts of the left and democrats to slur everyone else.

        Clinton and Biden and you can play all the games you want when you talk about the “dreggs of society” or the “deplorables”. But much of the country KNOWS you mean them.

        No country is more tolerant than the US. The US has never been more tolerant than it is today. And yet if you would listen to those on the left – and yourself, this is the most hateful country in the world and the most hateful time.

        Trump did not create the current toxic political environment – YOU did.

        Even posting here – I admit I sometimes use too many adjectives, and get too close to calling a SPECIFIC person rather than their views stupid or idiotic. But I do not recall ever using animal names for people (generally or specifically).
        For the most part to be insulted by anything I post YOU have to choose to identify yourself with the argument being criticized. I am not apologizing for that. If you think calling socialism idiotic, is the same as calling you idiotic – that is your problem – socialism is idiotic.
        But I do not think anyone has called you a pig or a hog, or any number of other personal insults. I do not care all that much – except that it is not argument, and I am interested in the argument. But you do claim to care. You constantly malign Trump for his insults. Well if insulting others is so serious an offense in your mind then where the H are you when anyone but lefties is getting insulted ?

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 6:04 pm

        So why did Obama spend most of his presidency underwater ?

        So far though Obama started out with higher numbers within a few months his numbers were the same as Trump’s. Today Trump’s numbers are higher than Obama’s at the same time.
        But for most of the past 2 years, they have been within a few points at any time.
        And Trump’s have been higher as much as he has been lower.

        So much so that one wonders where Trump’s numbers would be if he did not have 3 TIMES the press attacks that Obama did.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 6:17 pm

        There is little that you can do that will anger me more than these nonsensical attacks on “trump supporters” – the defintion of which seems to be anyone that does nto hate trump as much as you.

        The font of intollerance in this country today – and for the past several decades has been inarguably the left.

        It is not Trump supporters calling everyone who disagrees with them hateful hating haters.

        It is not Trump supporters that confuse policy differences with evil.

        You are playing right out of Alynski’s “rules for radicals”.

        Andrew Ngo just had an interesting article about the spike in hate crimes in Portland.

        There has been a huge surge in the number of stories about hate crimes in Portland.
        But despite having an antifa friendly mayor who is also the police cheif – there are no police reports because false reporting to the police is a crime – unless you are Jussie Smollet.

        But there are lots of allegations in the news and on Twitter, many are quite specific, naming who, when where. One of the proud boys is roaming arround Seattle in a Marroon suburban bashing LGBTQs with a baseball bat – several people have identified him and now he is getting death threats.

        Only, he left the proud boys 3 years ago, and sold the marroon Suburban before that and hasn’t been anywhere near Seattle in years.
        But lets not let facts interfere with a good narative.

        And lets not forget – the Proud Boys have several openly gay members.

        But lets not let facts get in the way.

        The FACT is the font of hatred now and for a long time in this country is THE LEFT.
        It is THE LEFT that is violent.
        It is THE LEFT that is looking to silence just about everyone else.
        It is THE LEFT that is intolerant.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 5:12 pm

        Don’t you know – it is a hate crime to use the wrong figures of speach.
        And because you are not a progressive – the ones that will get you in trouble, change each day.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 5:10 pm

        As Ron said – Biden is probably the least dangerous democrat.

        He is also the most like trump – old gropy white man with a connection to blue collar workers.

        No real accomplishments. A senator from a tiny state for half of forever.

        I would note that Biden has been groping women forever, and he continues to do so.

        I do not recall any allegations regarding Trump after 2006

      • April 1, 2019 1:06 pm

        Ron, I suppose he is the least dangerous.

        And, although I find his handsy behavior quite creepy, it doesn’t rise to a level that, in my opinion, would disqualify him from office.

        But, if the Democrats ran Al Franken out of office, I don’t see how Uncle Joe is any different…

        Hypocrisy on parade.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 5:34 pm

        The difference between Franken’s conduct and Biden’s is small.
        There are fewer documented incidents involving Franken.
        But Franken’s conduct is more clearly demeaning and sexual.

        But Biden is disturbing with young girls.

        Trump has a broader range of allegations – but Biden is more than allegations – there is lots of video. And contrary to Sarah Carter – it looks worse in video than in a still.
        But she does get to determine what conduct is acceptable with her, and we do not know the relationship between Biden and Carter.

        But Biden has been doing this so much that the Secret Service kept female agents and children away from him.

        There are many allegations against Trump, but the vast majority are lacking evidence or credibility. Those that are are pretty tame. Trump’s remarks about himself are more offensive than his actual conduct.

      • Jay permalink
        April 1, 2019 2:36 pm

        Oh please…
        Compared to Trump for governing experience, he’s a thoroughbred.
        And he hasn’t bankrupted any ‘can’t lose’ casinos.
        Or connived to set up phony schools.
        Or collaborated with foreign governments on private business deals when running for office. (And lied about not doing it).
        Or wasted hundreds of $millions of taxpayer money to play golf or reside at properties he owns, and profits from.
        Or lie daily at more than 1/1000 of the times Trump continues to do.
        Or allow unqualified relatives to have access to classified government information.
        Etc Etc Etc

        BTW, how is Trump’s Tax Cut doing to reduce the deficit?
        Any sign of Trump siphoning Mexican money to pay for the wall?
        (If you like avocados better stock up on them, if Trump’s threat to close down the border materializes we’ll be out of fresh ones in a week).
        Where’s Trump’s Obamacare replacement plan?
        WHERE ARE HIS PROMISED TAX RELEASES?

        I could continue to write a longer list, but I’m hungry for guacamole salad, and think I better whip some up while I still can. Here’s my recipe:

        INGREDIENTS:
        · 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
        · 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped white onion
        · 1 Serrano chili, finely chopped (seeds removed for mild)
        · 1 teaspoon Kosher salt, or to taste
        · ½ teaspoon cumin (optional)
        · 1 lime, juiced
        · 2 large ripe avocados (Haas)
        · 1 large tomato, finely chopped, unskinned
        · 1 clove garlic, minced
         
        DIRECTIONS:
        In a large bowl place the scooped avocado pulp and lime juice, toss to coat. Drain, and reserve the lime juice, after all of the avocados have been coated. Using a potato masher add the salt, cumin, and Serrano and mash. Then, fold in the onions, tomatoes, cilantro, and garlic. Add 1 tablespoon of the reserved lime juice. Let sit at room temperature for 1 hour and then serve.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 6:39 pm

        Trump;
        Before entering politics, took a personal/family fortune of approx $50m and has turned it into something between $3-10B.
        Has started and succeeded at numerous businesses, Residential real estate, commerical real estate, cassinos, golf clubs, restorts, Has succeeded in NYC, Florida, the world.
        Has succeeded in Entertainment, Television, and beauty pagents. Has succeeded in politics.

        You attacked Trump U. TU was a pretty typical part of the “how to get rich” fare.
        You can go to any bookstores and find hundreds of books about the same thing.
        And guess what ? They work. The “secrets” to success, are no secret. Save, invest, work your ass off. It is that simple. But few people can do it. Few people are willing to cut there expenses to the bone for several years. Few people are willing to work 70, 80, 90 hour weeks for several years – often with little or no pay.
        TU was more of a motivational program than a educational program – because that is what people who want to get rich need – motivation, not education.

        As president:
        The best economy in 20 years. That really says it all.
        But you can get into details – high LFP, low UI, low minority UI, Rising wages – paticularly at the bottom, best growth in 20 years.

        Perfect ? Nope. Not even average for the 20th century, but stellar for the past 20 years.

        nearly out of the mideast – something Obama promised would happen 10 years ago.

        Making progress with NK and China.

        As to the defict – I do not recall ANYONE promising that the tax cut would make the deficit disappear, only that it would not make it worse. The current actual deficit is no higher than the projected deficit was without the tax cut.
        Regardless, if we had Clinton we would have higher taxes and a higher defict.

        Should we work on the defict ? Absolutely. To the extent possible solely as president Trump is cutting spending everywhere except defense.

        I have criticised Trump’s deficits and his defense spending and will continue to do so.
        It is a serious problem. But it is hard to criticise Trump for a problem where the alternatives are all much worse.

        Biden:
        started with next to nothing, is worth about $900K

        Accomplishments ?

        I will be kind to Joe and NOT saddle him with the failures of Obama.,

        But that leave him with one great accomplishment in his life – getting elected to the senate.

      • Jay permalink
        April 2, 2019 12:15 pm

        There ya go again, misrepresenting numbers like a true Trumpophile:

        NUMEROUS evaluations available from publications that investigated his ‘inheritance’ found the value of the assets he inherited WAY higher, like the New York Times financial study in which the newspaper pegged it at $413 million.

        Forbes agrees with the NYT figures, and also agrees that “many of the wealth transfer techniques utilized by Fred Trump to reduce his estate and gift tax appear to be illegal” (and you wonder why Trump won’t release his taxes as promised) and that his father bailed him out of many “ financial difficulties in the early 1990s.”

        He isn’t a self made billionaire, or a self made tax cheat – he can thank daddy for both of his main money making inheritances.

        Other sources have concluded Trump would have ended up with the same net worth he alleges he has now if the inheritance was invested in traditional interest paying funds.

        That’s surely true when you examine how Trump’s alleged net wealth is calculated. He never has been worth what he claims. I use the word ‘alleged’ because half of his estimated worth is based on the value of his brand name: for licensing deals and developments, etc.- an ethereal value that is plunging.

        Trump’s name has become anethma, apparent in the number of buildings bearing his name or logo already changed, and many more in the process; and on polling scores tracking the public’s perception of his personality, where in general they find him ‘creepy’ ‘mean’ ‘insincere’ ‘dishonest’ ‘untrustworthy.’ His E-Scores released last month showed his overall “positive appeal” standing at 14 percent while his overall “negative appeal” was at 39 percent.

        IOW the Trump brand name is taking a dump. But the Trump Family doesn’t need to worry about those negative impressions long term. Once he’s out of office the Russians and other off-shore entities who will have profited to the multi-$trillions from his surreptitious schemings to further enrich them will reciprocate in kind. Trump Hi-Rises and industrial complexes and golf retreats will blossom in Moscow and Riyadh and, yes, likely in Pyongyang – where Donnie and Kim can play a few rounds to determine which one of them can cheat better.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 2, 2019 9:29 pm

        “NUMEROUS evaluations available from publications that investigated his ‘inheritance’ found the value of the assets he inherited WAY higher, like the New York Times financial study in which the newspaper pegged it at $413 million.”

        You really want to fight over everything ?

        Then NYT would be wrong Fred Trump was not worth 413M and Donald only got 1/3 of Fred’s worth.

        I would also suggest you checking WHEN it is you “sources” say Trump inherited whatever.

        DT received about 1/3 of Fred’s business in the 70’s. That was valued at about 50M at the time. Shortly after DT took over the business. All subsequent increases in the Family fortune where under DT’s management not FT. FT died in 1999.
        By that time DT was already far more wealthy. Further whatever DT received from FT in 1999 is the result of DT’s management for almost 30 years.

      • Jay permalink
        April 2, 2019 9:42 pm

        Tell it to Forbes.
        They agreed with the NYT number.

        But they don’t know what you know, right?

      • dhlii permalink
        April 2, 2019 11:56 pm

        I have no idea what NYT claims, All I know is what you say that NYT and Forbes claim.

        I provided you with multiple links to Forbes – including a REAL TIME estimate of Trump’s current wealth about $3.2B, and Forbe’s detailed breakdown of how they arrived at that figure.

        Unless you are predicting a total melt down of the NYC realestate market – with values dropping by 300% – you can not get to the values that the NYT article claimed in the article about Trump’s Deutche Bank pro forma’s.

        BTW Forbe’s 3.2B is DOWN, There estimate using the same information was $4B in 2014.

        But it is a factor of 4 higher than the NYT/DB article.
        And only $170M of Trump’s net worth is in “branding”.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 2, 2019 9:56 pm

        If you are going to cite forbes and NYT – then CITE them.

        If you have not figured it out, you do not have enough credibility to make a claim without backing it up.

        I have zero interest in unsupported vague criminal allegations about transfers of wealth that occured more than 50 years ago.

        You continue to fixate on this tax nonsense.

        DT has probably been audited every year since he graduated from Wharton.
        If the IRS has not found anything over 50 years, I am not particularly interested in essentially anonymous allegations.

        As to Trump’s tax return – he is not obligated to provide it to you, you are not obligated to vote for him. That is how that ends.

        No his father did not bail him out in the 90’s. By the 90’s Trump had been running the family business for 20 years and had more personal wealth than his father.

        You keep playing this “daddy made it” garbage.

        FT made his fortune entirely in residential real estate. FT pretty much turned everything over to DT in the 70’s. FT’s net worth at that time was less than 150M and DT got about 1/3 of that. All subsequent increases in the family wealth are attributable almost entirely to DT.

        I am not particularly interested in what some reporter who has never run a business or has no investments beyond his employer provided 401K thinks that someone else could have made had they put their money in bonds or something.

        BTW do you know what “traditional interest paying funds” are ?
        That is the funds that invest in people like Trump.

        Wealth does not magically grow.
        Wealth is created by people who take a risk – often losing, and create something other people value.

        The increases in your 401K are because others have BET on people like Trump.

        You have carped here several times about your “business experince”, yet your remarks lack even the most basic understanding of business.

        Have you really ever hired anyone ? Fired anyone ? Met a payroll ? Managed cashflow ?
        Figured out how to collect AR, and to how to hold of paying AP when cashflow is tight ?

        Nothing in any of your posts suggests actual experience with real world business.

        I would be hard pressed to think of anyone I know who has run a business who would not understand that “traditional interest paying funds” – are institutions that invest in people like Trump.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 2, 2019 10:15 pm

        Jay,
        Jared Kushner alone owns an 80% share of a single building in NYC with a could hundred million mortgage and an estimated value near $3B and that is just ONE of Kushner and Trump’s many holdings.

        If Trump were forced to liquidate tomorow under unfavorable terms – I am sure he would get very little. If he chose to sell freely on his own terms and his own schedule he would likely get far more than his current estimated worth.

        TODAY Forbes real time estimate of DT’s PERSONAL wealth – that is NOT the family wealth or Trump Enterprises wealth, That is DT the individual is $3.1B.

        Forbes gives Trump a Self made score of 4.

        According to Forbes if you inherited nothing and made it to the forbes list, your score will be 6-10. If you inherited anything it will be 1-5. With 5 being a small inheritance that you built into a large fortune. While 1 would be a large inheritance that you have not lost.

        Alice Walton has a score of 1.
        Charles Koch has a self made score of 5 – the highest you can get if you inherited anything.

        Put simply Forbes is calling BULL on your claims.

        Trump inherited millions and he is worth Billions.

        I would note that last year Wilbur Ross dropped out of the Forbes list of Billionaires.

        He did not lose any money, but he took $2B of personal wealth and moved it into a Trust.
        So it is no longer counted, yet he made that money, and it is available to him during the remainder of his lifetime, likely to do with as he pleases.

        Trump’s personal Worth is probably less than 1/4 of the wealth that he created from what he inherited from Fred. Everything in his own name, his childrens names, other family members names his wives names, assorted Trusts, all of that was created By Trump.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 2, 2019 10:29 pm

        Again you are delusional regarding the value of a “brand”.

        While public perception is part of the value of a brand, a significant part of a brand is the recognition that that “brand” has a long term reputation for survival and growth.

        The value of the Trump “brand” has NOTHING to do with general public perception.
        ONE part of the value of the brand is the likelyhood of people who use the goods and services Trump sells will do so again in the future.

        A portion of Trump’s yearly income comes from licensing the Trump name.
        Most of the Trump hotels arround the world are NOT owned by the Trump family.
        The owners pay Trump significant roylaties every year for the use of the trump name.
        THAT is a more relevant measure of brand value – Those hotels continue to pay for the use of the name. I have no idea what has happened with signs, but accoring to investopedia, revenue from Licensing was UP in 2017 and 2018.

        Trump apparently makes about $250M/year in profits from just his golf courses.
        Using an ROI method of valuation that would make them ALONE worth 1.25B based on cashflow and a conservative 5% ROI.

        Since I am not sure about your actual business cred, an ROI valuation is essentially determining how much capital you would have to invest in a “traditional investment” to produce the same return given a fixed interest rate.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 2, 2019 10:33 pm

        Here is how Forbes arrived at their $3.1B valuation, including every major asset of Trump’s and its approximate value.

        If you want you can go to zillow and try to price each building.

        https://www.forbes.com/donald-trump/#918f88028992

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 1, 2019 2:56 pm

        “while he had appointed him SecDef and allowed him to resign on principle”

        Like he could have stopped him. And after Mattis resigned our stable genius claimed he had fired Mattis, never being one to miss a chance to lie and brag at the same time, as well as his irresistible need to belittle a man he had praised to the hills (for once in his scummy life he was right about something when he hired Mattis and praised him).

        trump is scum, and those who ape him are not much better. I can only imagine the crop of children that diehard trump supporters are raising, they are going to have some model of how to act. I would not want to be teaching school in a trump loving state, adolescents are bad enough without trump as a role model.

        Ugg, Ugg, ugg, to the whole trump universe.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 6:50 pm

        There is no way to paint Mattis’s departure under Trump as worse than being fired by Obama.

        Regardless, is our military collapsing post Mattis ?
        No!

        Trump made the mistake of selecting “the generals” as part of his administration, expecting that they could make tough decisions, and that they knew what he was elected to do and so would do that when asked.
        Instead they fought him and they are now gone.
        And we are getting out of the mideast, Better late than never.

        It is too early to assert that “the generals” were wrong. But they have been at odds with the american people for decades.

        Regardless, I do not think Mattis is evil. But he was wrong.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 1, 2019 7:01 pm

        “trump is scum, and those who ape him are not much better. I can only imagine the crop of children that diehard trump supporters are raising, they are going to have some model of how to act. I would not want to be teaching school in a trump loving state, adolescents are bad enough without trump as a role model.

        Ugg, Ugg, ugg, to the whole trump universe.”

        No, you are not a member of the left, you do not insult people all the time, call them scum piss on their children.

        The worst schools in the country are in the deep blue cities.
        Utah, Iowa, Florida, Nebraska, North Dakota,
        Those are 5 of the top ten states for education. And if you add New Hampshire – which Trump lost by only 6000 votes that would be 6 of the top 10 states.

        Texas has the highest HS graduation rate. Followed by red states Montana, Utah, Maine, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Kansas. That is 8 of the top 15.
        5 of the top 10 highest average State SAT’s are red states.

  42. Jay permalink
    March 31, 2019 7:49 pm

    Ron, here’s a Twitter link you’ll like…

  43. Jay permalink
    March 31, 2019 7:57 pm

    He just can’t help it… his nature is to deceive.

    https://nypost.com/2019/03/30/trump-is-the-worlds-worst-cheat-at-golf-players-and-celebs-say/

  44. Jay permalink
    March 31, 2019 8:15 pm

    FOX at its Best:

    • dhlii permalink
      April 1, 2019 12:02 am

      So the right solution is to make it easier for anyone who wants to illegally cross the border ?

      You have demanded sanctions against Russia for doing what the US has done in elections accross the world.

      Yet, you are opposed to cutting aide to countries that are making it easy for people to violate our laws ?

      I would suggest reading the Taibbi article I linked, you are playing right into Trump’s hands.

      Whether you think they are right or wrong, those americans who are concerned about the influx of illegal immigrants will see your attacks on Trump as personal attacks on them.

      Those on the left here – take my factual critiques of their arguments as personal attacks.
      Even Ron seems to think I attacked him personally because I pointed out that laws against objects are ineffective.

      If it is so easy for people to take factual critiques personally, why do you think they are not going to take personal attacks personally ?

      If you beleive that cutting aide to these countries will be harmful – make the argument.

      BTW Why is it our governments job to provide aide to ANY foreign countries ?

      If you wish to give Honduras charity, do it yourself.
      Don’t force others to.

    • April 1, 2019 1:11 pm

      “FOX at its Best”

      No doubt, some ivy league assistant producer. S/he has now been taken off chyron duty….

    • April 1, 2019 11:59 am

      Jay, this is very interesting, but I wonder how much land is required for the two reservoirs (not all are next to the ocean as depicted in diagram) as well as the solar collectors and turbines.

      I suspect many EPA cases blocking construction, private property eminent domain cases and NIMBY cases to protect views and property values in the USA.

      But just the identification of this from the scientific community and not the government(s) forcing something on the private sector provides for a workable alternative to current technologies. The real problem with this in the USA is the distribution lines from the generation sites to the users. Nothing changes since Pickens gave up on wing energy. T Boone Pickens had wind farms planned for Texas, but after installing turbines and then due to lack of distribution lines, he moved that to other areas, only to have natural gas prices decline and make wind non competitive. Had the wind energy tax credits never existed, alternative sites and distribution may have been planned before the generators were installed instead of the reverse. This was the ultimate “cart before the horse” business.

      https://www.fastcompany.com/1514275/t-boone-pickens-officially-gives-texas-wind-power

    • dhlii permalink
      April 1, 2019 2:38 pm

      You are correct this is interesting, but it is also being oversold.

      Pumped hydro is an old technology. There is a large facility near me.
      Contra the article – finding suitable locations is HARD. It is atleast as complex and unpopular as building damns, and that has completely stopped in the US.
      It has massive environmental impacts – and while that is not inherently an impediment for me, it is for most on the left.

      It is also extremely expensive – a pumped hydro facility is MORE expensive than the equivalent hydro-electric dam.

      Pumped hydro does not create energy – it merely stores it – at a loss. It is a battery, not a power plant.

      Your article was the result of studies by scientists.
      I know the left thinks scientists are gods and know everything, but this is NOT a science problem, it is an engineering problem, and scientists are possibly more clueless than ordinary people about any type of engineering.

      There are myriads more criteria than those used to determine the viability of a pumped hydro facility.

      Pumped hydro is rare, because it is NOT common to have all the required elements – the right topology, the right geology. abundant energy at the right time of day.

      One of the problems with the article is that the most valueable use of pumped hydro is to balance day/night demand curves. That does not work correctly for solar.
      Combining pumped hydro and solar would mean having 3-4 times the solar energy capacity as necescary to meet peak demand – because you would have to pump water during peak demand hours so that you would have energy when the sun does not shine.
      BTW this is a general problem with solar energy (and some other renewables).
      Peak generation comes close to matching peak demand. That is very good IF you can still generate during off peak hours, but very bad if you can not because it means that your total capacity must greatly exceed peak demand, because you have to generate the extra that you are going to store at the same time as you are trying to meet peak demand.

      Engineers tend to understand problems like that, scientists tend not to.

  45. dhlii permalink
    April 1, 2019 7:46 pm

    The left in their own words.

  46. dhlii permalink
    April 1, 2019 8:03 pm

    I do not know how much credence to give this – because after all it is James Capper but:

    We now know that the Core to the “russian interferance” Intelligence community report, and possibly the ONLY thing that report was based on was “the steele dossier”.

    So When you hear Clapper talking about all the things that Obama directed, that CIA and NSA did down through providing the report to Trump, that it was either wholly or near wholly based on “the steele dossier”.

    We also KNOW that five-eyes – that is the intelligence cooperation agreement among the western powers provided NOTHING about “russian collusion”.

    So lets call it like it is, it is hard to take Clappers comments as meaning anything but:

    Based on the steele dossier, President Obama directed CIA/NSA/DNI/FBI to investigate the non-existant ties between an oposing political party

    Todate we have no knowledge of any kind of evidence that the Obama administration had of actual russian efforts to interfere in the election except what is in the Steele Dossier.

  47. dduck12 permalink
    April 1, 2019 9:51 pm

    Trump never interfered or got involved with security issues: Everyone except him is “in error:
    “White House Whistle-Blower Did the Unexpected: She Returned to Work”

    “Ms. Newbold told the committee that at least two senior administration officials had been granted security clearances — which gave them access to classified information — despite possible disqualifying issues. She also told the committee that she had compiled a list of at least 25 individuals, including contractors and senior advisers, who had a “wide range” of disqualifying information, including drug use, financial problems and criminal conduct.”
    “Ms. Newbold, who has a rare form of dwarfism, also accused Mr. Kline, the former director of personnel security, of retaliating against her when she repeatedly pointed out to him that actions he was taking, including overriding recommendations to issue clearances to two senior officials, were violating protocol. Ms. Newbold said that Mr. Kline oversaw a workplace where files — including extensive and sensitive background check documents — were not secured properly, and stopped the performing of credit checks for potential employees. She told the House committee that she had “never seen our office so ill-staffed and with such lack of experience.”

    • dhlii permalink
      April 1, 2019 11:09 pm

      Trump is the president, there is no such thing as the president interfering with security.

      There is a reason republicans are asking Trump to declassify information regarding the FISA warrant on Page, because Trump is the only person on the planet who can do so just by saying do it.

      If Trump says person X gets a TS/TCI security clearance – they do. It is not “interference”
      Every single power of the executive belongs to the president. That is how our constitution structured the executive branch.

      As to what I know – from all the news stories at the time, of which your current fascination is just a rehash of a story that died long ago:

      The FBI was slow walking Trump admin security clearances. And after the FBI finished they were turned over to the WH security office where they stagnated even longer.

      The problem was “fixed’ when Kelley told the FBI to deliver all of their clearance reviews to him, and that he would forward them to the WH Security office.

      This “fixed” the problem, because Kelley now knew:
      How long the FBI took
      Whether they approved or rejected the approval.

      Essentially it made the permanent employees of both the FBI and the WH security office answerable to Kelley.
      Neither were able to blame the other.
      And neither could make up fake claims of problems

      After that approvals proceeded at the same pace they had for appointments under Obama.

      I am not aware that Trump “interfered” – atleast not in any way beyond demanding that Kelley fix the problem.

      You seem to forget – Trump promised to “drain the swamp” – well guess what “the swamp has been fighting back”. It has been doing so throughout the executive. And slowly over time, various departments are identifying the trouble makers, and either retiring them, transfering them where they are harmless, circumventing them. lying them of, or occasionally firing them. Most of us are aware that nearly the entire 7th floor of the FBI has been cleaned out.

      I would further note this conduct is unusual. There have been myriads of presidential transitions, The Obama and Clinton people were both very surprised at how cordial and helpful the Bush staff was, while the Clinton people were not particularly friendly to the incoming Bush people, and the Obama people were downright hostile to the incoming Trump people. What Yates and the FBI did to Flynn is unforgivable.

      Hopefully in 2024 Trump’s people will have forgotten how they were setup if a democrat is elected to succeed Trump.

      Regardless, your story is meaningless. If Trump wishes to give Putin Top secret material or a TS clearance – he is free to do so.

      • Jay permalink
        April 2, 2019 3:41 pm

        Your asinine defense that trump can make any decisions he wants about national security is bullshit. You’d probably sit on your ass nodding approval in a bus driven by an incompetent fool down a treacherous winding road because he’s the duly assigned driver.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 2, 2019 10:43 pm

        “Your asinine defense that trump can make any decisions he wants about national security is bullshit.”

        No it is the constitution and the law.

        Nor is it unique to Trump, This was discussed regarding Obama, and Bush and even Hillary.

        Today Hillary Clinton could not receive a security clearance.
        There is only one Job in the US government handling Classified material that she could hold. PRESIDENT, because it is the only job that does not require a security clearance.
        The president is not “automatically cleared”, the President is the final authority on all issues related to classicifation.

        Why is it you think congressional republicans are pleading with Trump to declassify an assortment of documents ?

        Because Trump can do so UNILATERALLY.

        If the president says that someone has some specific security clearance – they have it PERIOD, no debate, no review. If the president decides to give classified material to the Russians, you can impeach him, but you can not charge him with violating the espoinage act.
        The president ALONE of all people in this country can not do anything that violates national security laws. The President is the ultmate authority on national security.

        Not Trump ANY PRESIDENT.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 2, 2019 10:46 pm

        “You’d probably sit on your ass nodding approval in a bus driven by an incompetent fool down a treacherous winding road because he’s the duly assigned driver.”

        I would get off the bus.

        Regardless, you continue to conflate what is with what you think should be.

        If you do not like the law or constitution as they are change them.
        Cut the garbage of pretending they are different than they are.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 1, 2019 11:35 pm

      Also referencing Mr. Newbold’s allegations – they are FALSE.

      Past drug use, financial problems, pending criminal investigations, and past convictions DO NOT disqualify someone from receiving a security clearance – or almost no one currently in government could get one. I would be surprised if 2/3 of the Obama whitehouse has not had past Drug issues.

      I would further note that the Newbold worked in the WH. The primary review of security applications is done by the FBI NOT by various departments.
      Each department has its own security office (or often offices), the purpose of these is to assist in the handling of classified information. They have a very minimal role in the actual approval process. Put simply Newbold is usurping FBI authority.

      When I had to travel to another secure fascility, I contacted the FSO for my fascility and they coordinated with the FSO where I was going. No matter what your actual security clearance is access to classified information is ALWAYS supposed to be “need to know”.
      A TS/TSI did NOT get me carte blanche access to all TS information. It allowed me access to TS information pertinate to the project I was working on. The role of the FSO was to get me the information I needed and because they got the information to make sure that I did not receive information I did not “need to know”. I note that they coordinated with other FSO’s when I went to other facilites. They assured that the FSO were I was going knew I was coming, had identifying information, so that no one could pretend to be me, and my FSO told that FSO what my “need to know” was, so that I could not access classified information outside of my “silo”. Further, though as we have seen with Petreus, Deutch, Snowden, Manning. and Clinton, it is actually possible to get classified information out of a SCIF.
      It is not supposed to be possible. Again one of the roles of the whitehouse security office is to control classified information. In my job, I had to go to the SCIF anytime I wanted to look at classified information. I could read it, but I could not copy it. There was no means to do so in the SCIF. This was also one of the issues involving Clinton’s emails. Where I worked the SCIF was a small very carefully controlled room. At the state department or whitehouse entire floors or large parts of the building are the SCIF. You are relatively free to do what you want inside the SCIF, but you can not take electronics, thumbdrives, into the SCIF and you can not even take paper notes out of it. In the whitehouse and state department, it is likely that upper tier staff have two offices – one inside a SCIF and one outside, and nothing can move between them.

      Again controlling THIS is the role of the department security staff.
      What is NOT their job is investigating – that is done by the FBI.

      What NewSome claims that the WH Security office did was improper, and Trump through Kelley did “interfere” with it – he STOPPED the improper interferance in the security process entirely. But making sure that people did their job, and did not take it on themselves to try to do the FBI’s job for them or to use the FBI to #resist

      There are very very few things which absolutely disqualify you regarding a security clearance. The biggest on is lying.
      Past convictions or arrests, or drug use – do not disqualify.
      Even current financial issues – do not disqualify.
      Being under investigation – does not disqualify.
      Which BTW was one of the games Newbold and cronies were playing – essentially trying to slow walk approvals of anyone that might have something to do with Mueller because they might be under investigation.

      When I filled out my SFQ-86 each year – about a 300 page long security application that is a life history, the first thing I was told was – make sure that you tell the truth.
      The two big things that disqualify you from a security clearance are:
      lying or omissions in the application.
      Actual reported instances of violations of classified information handling rules.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 1, 2019 11:37 pm

      It is always interesting reading stories about security clearances in the media as they are always pretty much entirely WRONG.

      As best as I can tell Ms. Newbold is confessing to politicizing her job. What she claims, was not her call or her office to make, It was the FBI’s.

  48. dduck12 permalink
    April 1, 2019 10:25 pm

    A real bigot: Maxine Waters: “Correct Thing’ Smollett Charges Dropped”
    “”It’s the correct thing that the charges were dropped,” Rep. Waters said. “First of all, we probably will never know all of the details. We’ve heard a lot of information. No one was hurt — that is, physically, killed, shot — he never committed a crime before, he forfeited the bail and it’s this kind of situation where they close the case all over the country every day. I have learned this isn’t unsual.”

    She went on to say the case has garnered “a lot of attention because of who he is — he’s an extremely talented man who people have come to love because he is on TV. I’m hopeful that he will go on with his career and be successful.”

    Saying she hasn’t spoken to Jussie since the charges were dropped, Rep. Waters said, “I would love to see him, and I am looking forward to seeing him very soon.”

    Her type of “logic” reminds me of someone else’s, I can’t recall who.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 1, 2019 11:42 pm

      “Her type of “logic” reminds me of someone else’s, I can’t recall who.”

      Make an accusation or do not.

      If you do not have the courage to stand up and say something – the inuendo is just cowardice.

      My problem with Waters is her hypocracy.
      No one was hurt that is, physically, killed, shot by anything that Mueller has charged.

      Is she prepared to let Flynn Papadoulis, Van der Zandt, Stone, Manafort and Cohen off the hook ?

      No her standards only apply to people she likes.
      Therefore they are not standards, they are pollitically corrupt.

  49. dduck12 permalink
    April 1, 2019 10:37 pm

    Another day another reversal. One day financial aid to central American countries is good- Kirsten- next day it is bad- Trump (with maybe Mulvaney’s hand up his a—.).
    https://www.vox.com/2019/4/1/18290443/aid-central-america-mexico-guatemala-immigration-border

    • dhlii permalink
      April 1, 2019 11:53 pm

      Nope it is always bad. The net negative impact of US financial aide to foreign countries is quite well documented. Noted Development Economist Bill Easterly has been studying and writing about that for decades.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 2, 2019 12:03 am

      Foreign aide does not work.
      All countries must solve their own problems.
      It is no different that trying to impose good government by external force.

  50. April 2, 2019 11:52 am

    So, honestly, Biden really is the least dangerous of the potential Dem candidates, but I think he may be toast. Not only is the Hollywood crowd turning against him, on the basis of behavior that he has exhibited for decades, that never bothered them before, but now this:

    “Nonetheless, some hard questions should be answered by Biden as he prepares, potentially, to run for president in 2020: Was it appropriate for your son and his firm to cash in on Ukraine while you served as point man for Ukraine policy? What work was performed for the money Hunter Biden’s firm received? Did you know about the Burisma probe? And when it was publicly announced that your son worked for Burisma, should you have recused yourself from leveraging a U.S. policy to pressure the prosecutor who very publicly pursued Burisma?”

    https://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/436816-joe-bidens-2020-ukrainian-nightmare-a-closed-probe-is-revived

    Why Biden himself brought this up, in 2018, I have no clue. Maybe he is not the sharpest tool in the shed, maybe he thinks that it made him look like a tough guy….who knows? But his leftist rivals for the Democrat nomination are not going to let this go, and if the media propaganda machine latches on to the story, his candidacy will be over before it’s officially begun.

    • Jay permalink
      April 2, 2019 3:56 pm

      If I was Biden I’d Go on the offensive.

      Start with releasing a video compilation of him hugging, hand shaking, kissing multiple men, women, children, and DOGS! With his voice-over saying “If you’re loveable, forgive me for showing my admiration.”

    • dhlii permalink
      April 2, 2019 9:21 pm

      Alot is made of Trump’s past business interests as a potential source of conflict.

      There is an enormous difference between a private business man trying to build a hotel in Moscow and then running for president, and a public servant negotiating with a country while his relatives engage in business with that country.

      Neither are inherently illegal. But the latter is more difficult that the former.

      • Jay permalink
        April 2, 2019 10:06 pm

        Trump was actively engaged in the Moscow hotel deal while he was running for president AND LIED about it.

        Doesn’t that offend you?

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 12:08 am

        “Trump was actively engaged in the Moscow hotel deal while he was running for president AND LIED about it.”

        Nope

        I do not think anyone has said Donald was involved.
        Donald Jr was involved until Feb 2016 when it was determined to be a dead deal.

        Cohen was actively engaged in the Moscow hotel deal while Donald was running for president AND Cohen LIED about it.

        “Doesn’t that offend you?”

        What offends me is your distorting the facts.

      • Jay permalink
        April 3, 2019 4:45 pm

        How diddlyxbrained are you to believe Trump Jr was negotiating on a project of that size on his own, independent of his father who initiated the project, bragged about it, financed the money for exploratory visits to Moscow, and also supervised every one of his son’s business moves…

        But more pertinent to your obtuse fabrication Trump wasn’t personally involved in promoting a Moscow deal, he SIGNED a letter of intent to proceed with negotiations to build a tower in the Russian capital in October, 2015. That was after he had announced his candidacy in June that year. His co-signer on the letter of intent was Andrey Rozov, a shady Russian business man.

        Trump outright lied that he had no Russian business dealings at the time. Or maybe he just had another memory fart, like forgetting his father was born in the Bronx, not in Germany.

        Seems he’s memory farted that same mistake 3 or 4 times. Isn’t that kind of memory disorder a sign of evolving dementia? As is the cognitive aging disorder of misprouncing words you were able to pronounce clearly in the past?

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 6:49 pm

        “How diddlyxbrained are you to believe Trump Jr was negotiating on a project of that size on his own, independent of his father who initiated the project, bragged about it, financed the money for exploratory visits to Moscow, and also supervised every one of his son’s business moves…”

        First – though most of your claims are wrong, I do not care, it would not change anything if you were right.

        Trump was free to negotiate to build Trump Tower Moscow from the day he was born through the day he dies, including during the election.

        A real estate developer working on developing real estate while running a political campaign is NOT A CRIME. It is not even suspicious.

        The ONLY issues regarding Trump Tower Moscow are
        Is the Steel Dossiers claims verified ? The answer is NO!
        Did anyone involved lie in their testimony about it. The answer is that Cohen told an inconsequential lie. I do not like Cohen, I have no problem wanted him to go to jail for the rest of his life. But I am not going to convict him of fake crimes to do so. Cohen’s remarks to congress were in error, but they did not rise to the high level necescary for perjury.
        Nor do Cohen’s self serving remarks about not having sought a job at the whitehouse that Republicans browbeat him over.

        As to facts – the EVIDENCE is that members of the Trump family have had a great deal of autonomy and responsibility. No they do not come to Donald Sr. everytime they pee to get their zipper pulled up. We get these “X consulted Trump” stories all the time, they are rarely true.

        I do expect that Trump JR, and Trump Sr. talk alot about business.
        I talked with my father about business throughout his life. For many years I ran HIS business. I acted without consulting him on many things, asked for his advice on others, and sometimes took it, and he asked for my advice and sometimes took it.

        There is nothing nefarious about that. You are trying to make a criminal conspiracy out of dark spin on ordinary conduct. While you are wrong about the facts, we already know that Eric, Donald Jr, and Kushner had a great deal of autonomy, we also know that like other people in business they sometimes consult each other about THEIR decisions.

        The evidence is that Trump was NOT personally involved in much of what you claim he was.
        But all that is irrelevant as it would not have been wrong if he had.

        I really do not want to fight over the “letter of intent”. That is something that occurs very early in a potential project. It is important, it binds both parties to conditions, but it does NOT bind them to go forward. It is proof the project was not dead in Oct. 2015, But it is not proof that anyone lied.

        As to the signature – again not something I want to fight over, but CNN has images of Donald Trump Jr’s signature online, and I can not tell them from those on the letter of intent.
        I can not tell Trump Sr’s signature from Trump Jr.s.

        That does nto surprise me even a little. I have my fathers name. The ”ii” on “dhlii” is “the second” “jr”, My initials are dhl, as are my fathers. I and a few other people can tell our signatures apart – but I can sign such that you can not tell mine from his and visa versa.
        And I frequently signed for him (and he for me). BTW with permission anyone can sign for anyone else, my wife’s secretary can sign for her as an example, but there are protocols for how that is supposed to be done. Though they are very often not followed.

        “His co-signer on the letter of intent was Andrey Rozov, a shady Russian business man.”
        Not Putin, not the Russian Government. That is the only part of what you state that is relevant.

        Rozov is a freind of Cohen’s from the time they were teens.
        However afluent and connected Rozov was – it was NOT enough to get Trump Tower Moscow built.

        Which is also a huge problem for you. If Trump was so well connected to Russia why is it that the only successful project in Russia was the Miss Universe pagent ?

        If Putin loves Trump why didn’t Trump Tower Moscow get built ?

        “Trump outright lied that he had no Russian business dealings at the time.”

        Do I get to hold you, Obama, Comey, McCabe, Clinton, …. to the same definition of “lie” ?

        BTW a “letter of intent” is not “business dealings” it is the INTENTION to have business dealings. Though there were further emails – by Sater and Cohen there was no “business dealing”.

        If I go into McD’s and say I would like to order a happy meal. But I never actually order a happy meal. Did I have “business dealings” with McD’s ?

        If you are going to accuse someone else of lying – you are required to prove that, and the benefit of all doubts goes to whoever you accuse.

      • April 3, 2019 7:41 am

        No, he was not, Jay. The only person who has alleged anything like that is Michael Cohen, who originally testified that this was not true, and then, after being pressured to change his testimony, said that Trump was aware that he< Cohen, was still engaged in talks with Russia.

        First of all, Cohen is not credible a witness.

        Second, as Dave says, there is a big difference between negotiating a real estate deal in Moscow when you're a real estate developer, and using your office as VPOTUS to channel money to your son's company, and to pressure a foreign government to fire the prosecutor who is looking into corruption by that very corporation.

        Nice try, though.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 2:03 pm

        There are 3 basic types of testimony.
        Facts – I observed.
        communications – I heard
        opinions.

        To my knowledge the only fact Cohen has falsely testified to regarded his email about Trump Tower.

        The left makes a huge deal about that.
        It is nothing and I do not think it warranted a perjury charge.

        Mueller plays fast and loose with the rules and the courts have let him.
        Perjury requires that you have the oportunity to review your own testimony and the opportunity to correct errors. No one is expected to be able to testify accurately and with precision about events often years prior.
        BTW this is the standard for perjury – but 18 USC 1001 has similar provisions.

        There has been repeated discussions of so called “perjury traps”, the ACTUAL law, is constructed to avoid that. Neither law enforcement nor prosecutors are supposed to be able to try to trip you up in some minor detail and then go “gotcha” to “flip” you.

        To be successfully prosecuted for lying many elements are required.
        The false statement must be knowingly false.
        It must be about something you could reasonably be expected to have familiarized your self with prior to being questioned/interviewed,
        it must be substanitive – errors about details that do not matter can not be made into crimes.
        It must have actually mislead – you can not commit a crime by telling an agent or the court something false, when they already know the truth.
        You must have the opportunity to review and correct your statement.

        None of Mueller’s charges meet those criteria.

        These constraints exist specifically to avoid the prosecution laying “perjury traps”.

        Both Cohen and Stone purportedly lied in their testimony to congress.
        I know that Stone;s lawyer’s asked for the transcript of his testimony to review and revise it and correct any errors. I suspect Cohen’s lawyer did the same. He would have been remiss not to.

        Neither was provided with transcripts – DOJ never completed their review and would not permitt that testimony to be released, because it might contain classified information.

        That is a ludicrous claim regarding Stone and Cohen as the testimony of someone who does not have a securtity clearance can not by definition include classified information.

        Regardless, the perjury charges against Stone should never have been filed.
        Probably those against Cohen should not either.

        But what we are down to regarding Cohen is
        ONE Fact error – the timing of his communications with people in Russia NOT part of the russia government trying to jump start the Moscow Trump Tower.

        Everything else in his testimony is just depricating opinions regarding Trump.
        Opinions are not evidence.

        In every other fact Cohen’s testimony has not helped Mueller.

        BTW Trump Jr. Also testified about the Moscow Towers. And his testimony was that the deal died to “deal fatiugue” in very early 2016, but that he knew that Cohen was on his own trying to revive it.

  51. Jay permalink
    April 2, 2019 3:48 pm

    The Rich get Richer

    “The tax law that President Trump signed in 2017 left behind millions of low-income families with children. Republicans rigged it to pad corporate profits and confer massive windfalls on the wealthiest Americans and their heirs while leaving out 26 million children and their families who were mostly excluded from the law’s increases in the Child Tax Credit.

    At the same time, they made families with incomes of as much as $400,000 eligible for a child tax credit of $2,000 per child — including members of Congress themselves. But a single parent with two children working full time at the federal minimum wage will receive an increase of only $75 — or less than $1.50 per week.” NBCNEWS.com

    • April 2, 2019 3:59 pm

      Jay you need to do some research. But I did it for you this time.

      https://www.taxpolicycenter.org/taxvox/tcja-increasing-share-households-paying-no-federal-income-tax

      You state “But a single parent with two children working full time at the federal minimum wage will receive an increase of only $75 — or less than $1.50 per week.” NBCNEWS.com”

      This is the biggest bunch of bull shit and fake news I have heard since Trumps last tweet.

      How in the hell can we have 44% of families not paying taxes and then have people making minimum wage eligible for any increase in whatever NBC is talking about.

      What the hell do you want them to do, take more than $75.00 from someone who does pay taxes and give it to those that don’t pay anything.

      And while we are at it, why should anyone that enjoys living in our democracy not have to pay any federal taxes while 55% are paying 100% of the federal tax burden?

    • dhlii permalink
      April 2, 2019 11:14 pm

      You have successfully demonstrated that NBCnews is economically ignorant.

      The fixation of both republicans and democrats on taxes is economically stupid.
      Taxes are essentially derivative.

      They are one of several means by which we pay the cost of government.

      The cost of government – large or small is always a reduction of what we can consume out of what we produce.

      Whatever government spends – that reduces what the rest of us can consume.

      While the consumption of the wealthy on an individual basis is large in comparison to that of the rest of us, it is a tiny portion of total consumption.

      The cost of government is paid for ALWAYS by the reduced ability of the rest of us – not particularly the wealthy to consume.

      Essentially all taxation is in some form or another a tax on consumption.

      Every economist that is not brain dead knows that corporate taxes are just indirect taxes on consumers.

      Ranting about corporate profits is ludicrous stupidity. Coporate profits go to re-investment – which we want, or to investors, who either consume it or re-incest it.
      For the most part investors are us. Today they are mostly our 401K’s or our insurance.

  52. Jay permalink
    April 2, 2019 4:34 pm

    WTF is wrong with this guy?
    Senility? Stupidity? Lies at any opportunity?

    Just now on live TV, to soften his NATO complaints about Germany’s money contributions, he said he has great respect for the Germans, his father was born there “in a wonderful place in Germany…”

    His father was born in the Bronx, NY, in 1905.

    If you can’t trust ANYTHING he says how can you rely on ANYTHING he says?

    • dduck12 permalink
      April 2, 2019 9:52 pm

      LMAO. Really, he doesn’t know where his father was born. What a lying idiot. Oh, he was “in error”, sorry; who knew lying was so complicated.

      • Jay permalink
        April 2, 2019 9:57 pm

        Apparently this is about the third or fourth time he’s said it.

        Maybe it’s the truth.
        Maybe Poppa Trump was born in Germany but had his birth certificate forged!

        I’m hoping to hear this chant at Trump’s next Public appearance:
        SHOW US HIS BIRTH CERTIFICATE. 🤩🤠🥴😂🤣

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 12:05 am

        So trump says father instead of grandfather – and that clearly means he is a liar ?
        BTW Fredrick Trump (Donald’s grandfather) left Germany June 30 1905, Fred Trump(Donald’s father) was born Oct 11, 1905.
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Trump

    • dhlii permalink
      April 2, 2019 11:21 pm

      So your definition of lying is saying father when he meant grandfather ?

      I occasionally call one of my sisters by the others name – am I lying ?

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Trump

      • dduck12 permalink
        April 3, 2019 12:15 am

        Jay, there is a simple explanation, not the one that he confused his father with his grandfather-three times!!!, but the Bronx one: He wants to share in the AOC claim of Bronx heritage. Who can blame Trump, er, Drumpf coming from the Bronx is a badge of honor like the Nobel Prize that he is dying to get even with Obama.
        Trump is a liar that repeats the same lies over and over even if they are shown to be wrong. He is a sicko.

  53. April 2, 2019 9:20 pm

    To follow progressive policies on correction of problems, a regulation needs to be enacted to control the amount of “climate change food” whites eat in America.
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/04/01/study-blames-white-americans-diet-for-climate-change/

  54. April 2, 2019 11:00 pm

    Well I may have a choice after all for President.

    https://www.rollcall.com/news/rep-justin-amash-considers-libertarian-challenge-to-trump

    Or Howard Shultz.

    Probably Justin though, since Howard is more Democrat than Libertarian.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 3, 2019 12:11 am

      Amash is pretty libertarian – are you up to that ?

      BTW Amash did NOT say he was running, he has been queried many times on this.
      All he has said was that he would not rule anything out.

      • April 3, 2019 12:59 am

        What do you mean Amish is pretty Libertarian? Of course I can handle that. I can compromise some of my positions on some things to get a large percetage of what I want.

        And please note what I said. In reply to your comment about him saying he would not rule out anything, I did not say I WOULD have a choice, I said I MAY have a choice. Howard Shultz has not said yes either.

        And if neither run, then I probably wont have a choice and I will become part of the almist 100 million that dont vote unless the Lib’s come up with an alternative.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 4:20 am

        I do not pretend to know the minds of other people.
        At best I can know what they have said.

        Jumping from Amash saying “not to rule anything out” to a presidential bid is a leap.

        I doubt Amash is running. But I would not mind being surprised.

        Nor do I catalog the exact positions of all libertarian politicians. But my recollection is that Amash is closer to Walter Block than Rand Paul.

        Here is a book by Block. It is good, It is an easy read. It is also extremely provocative.
        Block is more much more extreme than I am. If he is not an actual anarcho-capitalist, he is very close.

        https://mises-media.s3.amazonaws.com/Defending_the_Undefendable_2018.pdf

        I do not think Amash is Block – but he is not Gary Johnson, or Bill Weld, or Rand Paul.

        You certainly have a choice. The question is whether you like that choice.

        I have not looked seriously at many of the democratic contenders. But I would be surprised if I could vote for any of them.
        The odds of voting my voting for Trump are not high either. Though he is more appealing and less dangerous today than in Nov. 2016. All those suffering from TDS should think very seriously about that. In Nov. 2020 Trump will be the incumbent. He will be a known quantity – just as Obama was in 2012, and Bush in 2004. Voters do not have to like him. They do not even have to like him the most. They just have to feel safer voting for Trump than whoever democrats run. So long as economic growth remains about 2% – I think Trump wins, so do all the models that are driven by economic rather than polls and they have an incredible track record. If the economy is about 2.5% Trump wins bigger than 2016. In 2020 we will have had Trump for 4 years. During those 4 years despite the ranting and raving of the left, the world wild not have gone to hell. In all likelyhood, Trump will be able to ask “are you better off today than 4 years ago ?” and a very large portion of people will be able to say yes.

        I beleive Gary Johnson has hung it up. I think Bill Weld has announced he is running.
        I am not sure I can forgive him for endorsing Clinton in the midst of the campaign after he was selected as the libertarian VP candidate. If you think Clinton is the lessor evil – fine, then do not accept the libertarian nomination for VP.
        Aside from that I would likely vote for him.
        I think Austin Peters has announced he is staying in the GOP.
        The next big libertarian candidate is John MacAffee.

        Lets just say, that will fit in really well with the streaker at the last libertarian convention.
        I would vote for MacAffee – primarily as a protest vote because he can not win.
        But he will not improve the credibility of libertarians.

        I do not think Amash is running.

        Regardless, I can pretty much tell you alot about how I will vote – in any race, if there is a libertarain and he is not obviously nuts, I am probably voting for him.
        If there is an incumbent – I am probably voting against them, whether that means voting for a Republican or a democrat. In the unlikely event there is an actually appealing candidate from either party I will vote for them – but that is really rare.

      • April 3, 2019 8:27 am

        There is very little doubt in my mind that I will vote for Trump again. I find Howard Shultz to be an interesting candidate, if he’s actually running, but I believe that the country has moved so far to the left, that we need to continue with an administration that is attempting to roll back some of the policies that have been implemented over the last few decades.

        I have not seen any evidence that Trump has done anything unethical or immoral, while holding public office. If an intern like Monica L. comes forward, alleging that she has been spending time under the desk in the Oval Office, I will reconsider. I have come to believe that anyone who could withstand the unprecedented opposition that Trump has withstood, the vast majority of which has been politically-motivated falsehoods, is prepared to continue with his agenda. And, for the most part, I support that agenda.

        That said, I consider our right to vote to be sacred, and anyone who chooses to cast his vote for someone else is not my enemy, but simply my countryman, with whom I disagree. The fact that those with TDS consider people like me to be the enemy is truly disheartening.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 5:47 pm

        “I consider our right to vote to be sacred, and anyone who chooses to cast his vote for someone else is not my enemy, but simply my countryman, with whom I disagree. The fact that those with TDS consider people like me to be the enemy is truly disheartening.”

        Amen.

        I have been persuaded by John Stuart Mill that voting is not a right, it is a sacred trust.

        Those things that are actual legitimate natural AND legal rights do not have consequences for others. You do not have the right to murder someone, though you may have the freedom to do so.

        The difference between a right and a trust, is that a trust comes with obligations, including obligations to others. We do not and should not have any mechanism to enforce those obligations – beyond public scorn, but voting still has obligations an actual right does not.

        Voting is authorizing and legitimizing the use of force by government. When we vote we bear moral responsibility for what we vote for in ways that are more significant that when we speak advocating for something, but less than when we act.

        Voting to use force against another without first justifying it is an immoral act.
        It is MORE that just bad speach.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 6:01 pm

        Beyond voting is the nonsense the left is selling today that it is legitimate to restrict who can speak in US elections.

        I have argued before that there is nothing wrong with Russia/russians posting or advetising in US elections.

        To the extent it is illegal – it should not be. Not only are such laws unenforceable, they are stupid, and HARMFUL.

        I have noted that John Oliver comments on US elections. Christopher Steele certainly did.

        But so does “the guardian”.

        I constantly read stories int he US media about Brexit – isn’t that our media “meddling” in UK elections ?

        US gay rights activists go to Russia and other countries to speak out against thier laws and poltics. In those countries that speach is illegal and they are often jail. Our press reports on this – isn’t our reporting meddling in the elections of another country ?

        At this moment two democratic Senators are preasuring Trump to tie winding down sanction on Iran to releasing prisoners – many of whom are journalists of human rights advocates or christians.

        Asbolutely !!!!

        Why in the world would the US want to be compared to Iran or Russia as a nations that silences political disidence ?

        If you are offended by the political speach of another person, group, or country.
        The correct response is more speach not forced silence.

  55. dhlii permalink
    April 3, 2019 12:22 am

    Why Trump won.

  56. dhlii permalink
    April 3, 2019 12:47 am

    This is what libertarian is about.
    You are free. Free to do stupid things, But

  57. dhlii permalink
    April 3, 2019 12:53 am

    Does what you wrote mean anything ?

    You say your explanation is simple ?

    Trump is highlighting his Bronx heritage how ?

    Outside of the Bronx who cares ?

    Regardless, once again you have tried to spin a very minor error into a large deliberate lie.

    If you accuse someone of lying The burden of proof is on you.
    I have heard nothing from you or anyone else pushing this that demonstrates a lie, much less incontrovertably does.

  58. April 3, 2019 8:07 am

    Many people, including me, have often wondered how it is that all of the main stream news outlets report the same exact stories and use the same exact wording in every story. After an actual investigation, real reporters have discovered the existence of a dark money organization that has been sending out a daily newsletter of anti-Trump stories. And~ surprise!~ it’s linked to Fusion GPS:

    “Jones operated what he called a “shadow media organization helping the government” to investigate Russian meddling in the 2016 election. He also told the FBI in March 2017 that he received funding from a group of between seven and 10 wealthy donors and that he planned to provide information to federal investigators, the press and lawmakers….”

    “Real Clear Investigations reported on March 20 that TDIP sends out daily newsletters with a roundup of news stories about the special counsel’s investigation and other Trump-related matters.”

    “Jones has also taken credit for planting anti-Trump news stories. Adam Waldman, an attorney with links to Christopher Steele, revealed text messages showing that Jones took credit for a Reuters news article that raised questions about Russian purchases of Trump properties in Florida.”

    https://amp.dailycaller.com/2019/04/01/fusion-gps-steele-soros-millions/

    If CNN, MSNBC and the rest, had any journalistic integrity whatsoever, they would have reported the existence of this source. But why do any real investigating, when you have a heavily biased, Soros-backed, Ministry of Truth providing you with your daily news stories?

    It will be interesting to see if TDIP shows up in the full Mueller report, as the source for many debunked aspects of the Russian conspiracy theory.

    • April 3, 2019 3:13 pm

      Soros backed. Really?
      Murdoch backed Fox, definitely.

      • April 3, 2019 5:50 pm

        Well, sure. But we’re not talking one network here. We’re talking about a dark money lobbying effort to provide biased, and often fake, news stories to all of the networks except Fox. For all I know, Fox has reported some of these stories as well.

        And, for what it’s worth, Soros is only one of the billionaires funding this group, which is aligned with Fusion GPS. The name Soros is to the right, as the Koch brothers are to the left … boogeymen who represent all dark money efforts. The Murdoch’s are different. They are a media family, certainly the founders and owners of Fox. But the 2 sons, Lachlan and James are not even conservatives, and Rupert, the father, is basically retired.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 7:13 pm

        If rich people wish to use their money for political speach – that is perfectly fine.

        It is not “nefarious” – not when conservatives do it, not when progressives do it.

        If they want to fund “grass roots” campaigns – fine, just as the reporting that identifies that they are funding it is fine.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 6:05 pm

        Sorros, can back whatever he wants, as can Koch, Steyer, Bloomberg, Murdock, Bezos, ….

        A story is true or false – independent of whether it originates on Fox or CNN.

        People I do not like are still entitled to as much freee speech as they can manage, and the pay as much as they want to amplify that.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 3, 2019 5:36 pm

      It is worse than that – there are almost no actual “investigative” journalists anymore.

      There are no woodward’s and bernsteins. The Closests we have today is project veritas.
      And the left certainly does not like them.

      Nor is this an accident – the guidelines and standards of journalism have been changing.

      Some news organizations (fox) have few if any actual reporters,
      They either have talking heads who comment on the news or whose sources are people who call them and provide them with rumors.

      There is almost no one who actually goes out to gather the facts.

      So all reporters do anymore is spin what other people say.

      The other one I find nuts is that even organizations with high standards that would not use the Steele Dossier on their own, will report on it the moment another outlet does.

      Let that sink in. The DOJ/FBI/CIA used garbage to get a warrant that all of the media had and none would report on until Buzzfeed printed it.
      The standard necescary to get a warrant should be higher than that of Wapo or NYT to run a story.

      Further lots of polls and swamp creatures are famous for manipulating the media.

      AS an example though it violates FBI guidlines it is actually common for FBI agents to leak regarding an ongoing criminal investigation. They often do so to nudge those they are investigating into acting. Or to try to use News Stories as evidence to get warrants.
      So if a police officer plants a fake news story that joe doe is selling drugs, and the reporter runs the story, then the cop, uses the story to go get a warrant.
      Or sometimes people other than the police do the same thing. They plant a story that provides the police with what they need to get a warrant.

      Or there is Ben Rhoads and his infamous “echo chamber”. Rhoads would leak things tot he press, that would cause them to report it, and that allowed the administration to talk about it, and then they could leak it again later to make sure the media talked about it some more.

      We have gotten so far from media verifying sources, that pretty much anybody can get journalists to print most anything they want – and do so whatout attribution.

      Or we had Comey and Brennan arranging to brief Trump on part of the steele dossier, so that the media would report about it. Trump figured that out, which is one of the reasons he had an axe to grind with Comey.

      Here were have the FBI refusing requests by Judge Sullivan

      “The FBI is behaving like it’s above the law,” Grassley said in a statement provided to POLITICO on Monday evening. “Simply refusing to cooperate with a court-ordered request is not an appropriate course of action. This entire case, from Secretary Clinton’s ill-advised decision to use a non-government email server, to the FBI’s investigation about classified information, needs some transparency in order to assure the American people that getting to the bottom of this controversy is a priority.”


      https://www.politico.com/story/2015/09/fbi-rejects-judges-request-for-clinton-email-info-213889

    • dhlii permalink
      April 3, 2019 5:38 pm

      Here we have the FBI refusing an FOIA request for emails to/from cnn to determine if the FBI was truthful when it claimed it did not leak the arrest of Roger Stone to CNN

      https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2019/04/fbi-refuses-foia-request-for-emails-sent-from-cnn-analyst-and-former-comey-aide-josh-campbell-just-before-roger-stone-raid/

    • dhlii permalink
      April 3, 2019 5:40 pm

      “Please provide all e-mails sent to or received from any account with a ‘cnn.com’ domain from January 24, 2019 through January 25, 2019,” The Federalist wrote in a Freedom Of Information Act request submitted on the morning of January 25, 2019…

      …In a letter to The Federalist justifying its refusal to provide the request records, the FBI claimed that the request for emails to and from a specific domain sent or received on two specific dates was “overly broad,” did not provide “enough detail to enable personnel to locate” the records, and sought information in “vague and undefined terms.”

      Using the same rationale, the FBI also rejected a separate FOIA request from The Federalist which specifically requested any and all FBI emails on the day of the Stone raid sent to or from Josh Campbell, a former FBI employee who worked under James Comey, former director of the FBI, and now works as a law enforcement analyst for CNN, as well as any and all emails from that day specifically mentioning Roger Stone.

  59. April 3, 2019 12:51 pm

    Again, what we are doing IS NOT WORKIING!
    http://time.com/5563259/catch-and-release-expands-migrants/

    Congress wont get off its dead ass and fix the problem.
    So how many cases of measles will be released doing this? We have had the highest number of cases in years. How many are due toillegals not vaccinated?
    How many people with TB?
    How many will end up in E.R.’s due to other health issues.

    OPEN THE DAMN BORDERS!
    Quarenteen people coming in for a period of time, do health screening, vacinate, and then “release”.

    FORGET THE DAMN CATCH. It is not working!
    FORGET THE WALLS. They are not working!
    And if congress still does nothing, TEAR down all walls because California has the majority of walls and CA deserves to support illegals just as much ad TX, AZ and NM.

  60. Jay permalink
    April 3, 2019 5:00 pm

    Ron, Ron, Ron…
    Your anger over catch and release is making you illogical. 🙃

    If an increase in measles and other contagious diseases can be traced to those illegals caught and released, won’t opening the borders to MULTIPLE MORE carriers of those diseases be catastropic?

    • Jay permalink
      April 3, 2019 5:01 pm

      And the CATCH part is working, just not working good enough.

      • April 3, 2019 6:04 pm

        No, Ron is correct. The “catch” part is not working because there are well-funded caravans pouring into the country ~ Last month alone, over 100,000 arrests. And that doesn’t count the people who were not caught, who are many.

        We don’t have anywhere near the facilities to house these people. Instead of walls, we should be building giant detention facilities, with playgrounds, schools, medical facilities, etc . where these tens of thousands of people can be held until their phony asylum claims can be heard and rejected.

        Then we should welcome those who are fleeing genuine political persecution, and even gang violence, and deport the rest.

        Do I think this will happen? Of course not. The political agendas of both parties will block it. And will Congress pass a legislative fix, which could be done in a week? Absolutely, not.

        We won’t get any barriers either. So, maybe Ron is right…tear down the California wall, let San Diego be overrun with thousands of illegals needing food,shelter and medical care, and shrug our shoulders when Gavin Newsom declares a state of emergency….

      • dhlii permalink
        April 3, 2019 7:08 pm

        “And the CATCH part is working, just not working good enough.”

        The fundimental problem at the moment, the core of the “crisis” is that CBP is:

        CBP is pretty good right now at catching illegal crossers.

        If CBP catches someone within 100miles of the border, by law, it can take them into custody, expedite a hearing in 30 days and deport them directly.

        That is what Trump is trying to do.

        There is a combination of law, consent decrees, and facts that results in “catch & release”

        There are not enough immigration court judges and the workload has exploded,
        and it usually take 90days or more for those in custody.
        There are insufficient detention fascilities to hold everyone caught until a hearing is scheduled. Once someone is “released” the process gets extended and takes more like 18months – if that person shows up for hearings.
        There are even fewer fascilities for adults with children.
        The Flores Consent decree provides a variety of different limits to the time the government can hold someone before they must be released.

        The number of ALJ’s on immigration is dictated by congress. That number was increased as part of the recent budget, but by less than Trump wanted and less than is needed.

        The number of beds that CBP has to detain people has been reduced.

        We also forget that the immigrants are cognizant of our laws. If we say that a single male can be detained for 9 months, but a family with children can only be held for 14 days – we will see families with children spike.

        The purpose of the wall is to reduce the flow sufficient that CBP has the resources to deal with the much smaller numbers that get past the wall.

        And the wall actually works. CA has almost its entire southern border walled. Even though it is mostly older and in poor shape, CA went from having the majority of illegal crossings, to having almost none.

        Even the new wall Trump is building is working. In places where the wall has gone up crossings have dropped to zero.

        The problem is that as the wall is extended the crossers move too.

        Now instead of crossing in populated areas with nearby medical fascilities, they are crossing at increasingly remote locations. This raises the likelyhood they will be in worse shape when they manage to cross AND that they will be far from fascilities to treat them.

    • April 3, 2019 6:42 pm

      Jay “Your anger over catch and release is making you illogical. ”

      I dont think many here read more than the first couple sentences of each comment before replying. I already explained my position, but read further if you want to understand it. This is not anger, it is a logical recommendation based on years of failed policy.

      For clarification. As I stated earlier, but will rephrase and state in a different format. In order to insure individuals entering the country from countries they are fleeing, I recommend an end to catch and release. I propose that word be communicated that those coming into the states at any.port of entry will be processed, sent to a location where they will spend a certain number of days, tested for specific health issues, vaccinated and then released to churchs, relatives or other support organizations. This can be as a direction by the president.

      No one can tell me that what we are doing is working. And no one can convince me Texas, Arizona and New Mexico should be the border states getting the vast majority of immigrants entering because their borders have fewer miles of security.

  61. Jay permalink
    April 3, 2019 7:39 pm

    Trump is a lying motherhumper.
    Anyone voting for him again is #@&*$&@

    https://www.nationalmemo.com/showusyourtaxes-heres-every-time-donald-trump-has-said-he-would-release-his-tax-returns/

    • dhlii permalink
      April 4, 2019 1:21 am

      “Trump is a lying motherhumper.”
      About the same as every other president, politician, we can now add the media, the left, and many of the posters here.
      That makes Trump pretty ordinary.

      “Anyone voting for him again is #@&*$&@”
      And those who voted for Clinton ?
      Are they somehow better than Trump ?
      I think not.
      Those who voted for Obama ?

      You are really tolerant – just piss all over 65M people.
      That is certainly the way to win the next election.

      Yup, Trump promised to release his taxes, and he didn’t.
      Obama promised not to fuck up healthcare, yet he did.
      The former does not effect me. The later does.
      Regardless, your remedy for the former is to vote.
      There is no legal or constitutional requirement for a president to provide his tax return.

      The house has just demanded Trump’s personal and business taxes from the IRS.

      The law on that is really squishy. While there is SOME law that has not been used in little less than 100 years to permit this, that law is narrow, and allows only a few people in congress access to tax returns and does not allow them to be shared.

      You want to change the law ? Fine.

      My recomendation to Trump – Follow the law, and then open up a criminal investigation of the house when inevitably his tax returns leak.

      Regardless, democrats should think twice about actually succeeding.
      The law authorizing the IRS to release tax returns to congress is not limited to the house, and not limited to the president. McConnell could request Pelosi’s or Schumer or Nadler or Schiff’s taxes. Or Warren, Biden, Beto, Sanders.

      Wise people do not wish to open this can of worms.
      But democrats are not wise.

      • Jay permalink
        April 4, 2019 12:02 pm

        A good part of the reason your opinions often are ridiculous is that your brain lacks the proportionality gene.

        To rationalize Trump’s compulsive never-ends body of lies by saying so does every other president and politician lie is like equalizing in degree having your face nicked whilst shaving with having your throat cut by a burglar, because they both are injurious to the body.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 12:16 am

        “A good part of the reason your opinions often are ridiculous is that your brain lacks the proportionality gene.”:

        Jay,
        You oppinions do not change facts. There is no “proportionality” gene.
        Nor can you wish some standard you wish to impose into existance by asserting biology,
        or anything else.

        humans have worked out many relative values over 150,000 years.

        Bad speach is less consequential than bad conduct.

        Actual FORCE is more consequential than not having been magically granted the choices you want.

        Are Trump and Biden close in comparison to Say Clinton ? Yes,

        If we had real evidence that Trump non-consensually engaged in the conduct he speaks of that would make him virtually identical to Biden.
        But what you do is always weighed more heavily than what you say.

        “To rationalize”
        You continue to use rationalize – as if you know what it means.

        If actual facts logic and reason are at odds with your wishes – my demonstrating that is rational, it is not rationalizing – atleast not in the way you are claiming.

        “Trump’s compulsive never-ends body of lies”
        We are having a major problem with this assertion today.
        You and the entire left and the media has been lying about Trump for 3 years.
        Worse you have called his contradicting your lies, lies themselves.

        Trump is not someone who always speaks the truth.
        But his credibility is greater than yours and the media.

        That is not an opinion it is a fact.
        It is the consequence of having been caught in lies about him.

        You do not seem to understand this.

        The consequence of lying about others, is that you are no longer believed.
        It is a consequence you subjected yourself to.

        “by saying so does every other president and politician lie is like equalizing in degree having your face nicked whilst shaving with having your throat cut by a burglar, because they both are injurious to the body.”

        Only if Trump is the shaving accident.

        The fact is not only have you and myriads of others lost your credibility because of fallse accusations.
        But Trump’s “lies” are in comparision to most politicians – inconsequential – shaving accidents, not throat slitting.
        Your inability to see that demonstrates your own disconnect from reality

        Trump lied about his tax providing his tax returns. You foam at the mouth over that.
        But neither you nor anyone else has been harmed.
        Not satisfying your voyeuristic desire to peer into the lives of others is not a harm.
        If you do not like that – you have the means to punish Trump – do not vote for him.
        But lets not pretend that is near the scale of “if you like your health insurance you can keep it” or “benghazi was a spontaneous response to an internet video no one had seen”
        Or myriads of others. Like the lie that the Trump campaign was colluding with Russia.
        That has had horrible consequences for the whole nation.
        But god forbid you should take responsibility for your own lies.

    • April 4, 2019 1:06 pm

      Jay, this is exactly the kind of thing that will happen more and more, as people like you become so mentally consumed with Trump hatred, that you are willing to believe that Trump or anyone who voted for him is a racist, a Nazi, etc., etc….. Even a Starbucks manager in Palo Alto recognizes how deranged this is, and fired the TDS afflicted woman:

      https://padailypost.com/2019/04/03/confrontation-at-starbucks-over-maga-hat-erupts/

      • April 4, 2019 1:10 pm

        Oops, she didn’t get fired from Starbucks, although she did this at a Starbucks. She got fired from her accounting job, as a result of her Starbucks
        behavior.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 1:25 am

        The article just drips with double standards.

        Mankey is purportedly beloved by everyone in the community – even though she is clearly a vindicitive intolerant viper who will not allow any oppinion at odds with her own to be expressed.

        Wearing a MAGA hat is characterized as clearly meaning inumerable things that it does not.

        Aparently the left not only gets to define what their own words and values mean, but what those of their opponents mean.

        Make America Great Again was a fantastic Slogan.

        Left and right can disagree over what constitutes greatness, but none of us should disagree that seeking to make america great is a GOOD thing. It SHOULD be a shared value, even if we do not share exactly how to do it.

        Purportedly “the man” talks loudly about politics.
        Chasing him through starbucks multiple times and berating his politics is not “talking loudly about politics ” ?

        Mankey absolutley has a huge double standard.

        This is more of AOC’s nonsense about being right about the facts is unimportant if you are morally right.

        You are not morally right, if you are not right about the facts.

        Mankey and the left at the moment should be hang-dog and quiet in the hopes that people do not see their shame.

        Like another poster here was briefly – they should be denying they every beleived this Trump Russia nonsense, instead of doubling down and threatening people who were right about it.

  62. Jay permalink
    April 3, 2019 7:50 pm

    Anyone saying Biden’s behavior is creepy without nothing Trump’s has been far more despicable is a hypocrite.

    Biden didn’t feel-up and kiss his daughter on the mouth, or suggest it was OK for her to pose naked in playboy if he approved of that month’s articles, or say she was HOT and would date her if they weren’t related, or periodically burst into Miss Teenage America locker rooms where the girls were dressing. Or brag about fucking married women, and grabbing vaginas, and shoving his tongue into the mouths of woman. Or willingly having six with a porn star while his wife was pregnant.

    After all this has been revealed, anyone who would vote for this degenerate again is FUBARed beyond repair.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 4, 2019 1:47 am

      Nope Biden felt up other peoples daughters – including those of secret service agents.

      Do you have EVIDENCE that any of Trump’s conduct with women was non-consensual ?

      Further once again you conflate speach with actions.
      The allegations regarding Miss Teenage America have been denied, not merely by Trump but by the pagent.
      But Trump has repeatedly admitted to wandering arround backstage during adult pagents.
      Whether he was “leering” or not is an oppinion.
      Regardless, even at pagents which is little more than a flesh cattle call, Trump has not molested anyone.

      If you have ever viewed Porn – or watch R rated movies, then it is a bit hypocritical of you – and actually mysoginist to claim there is something creepy about Trump’s remarks about his daughter.

      Adultery troubles me. I am with Perot, if a man’s wife can not trust him, why should the rest of us. But that would disqualify atleast half of US presidents. Certainly Clinton, and Kennedy.

      If voters wish to disqualify candidates for bad character for adultery – that is fine with me.
      But do not pretend that is somehow only disqualifying for Trump.
      I will beleive you care about that when you are equally upset about the affairs of those you actually like.

      I am glad that you understand that the Sex with Daniels was consensual.
      Most of Clinton’s victims were not.

      Biden’s conduct is not nearly as bad as Clinton that we know of, but it is not better than Trump’s, it is arguably worse, and there is no consent.

      There are unfortunately people like Biden throughout our lives. My wife just had a DA try to grab her in court. It was not likely “sexual” but it was absolutely a power and dominance move. Much of what we know that Biden does is perfectly acceptable if it is consensual.

      Most of us have gone through awkward public dances as two people determined if they were going to shake hands, hug, or kiss each other on the cheeks. The process typically involves lots of awkwardness and signals back and forth. That is the process of establishing consent.

      Biden does not establish consent. I have no idea whether his behavior is sexual.
      There are stories by secret service agents that he really liked to go “skinny dipping” when there were female agents on his detail. So maybe it is sexual.
      But it does not matter. It is “creepy” to grab other people without their consent.

      Trump talks about having done the things Biden has done. But we have no credible allegations that he has done so without consent.
      If we do, all that does is raise him to Biden’s level.

      • Jay permalink
        April 4, 2019 11:47 am

        You’re in despicable slander mode again.

        Either that or you’re ignorant of the definition of ‘felt up’ – meaning to touch someone sexually; for a female her breasts or buttocks or vagina for your own sexual excitement.

        Today would be a good day for you to GFY.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 4, 2019 6:46 pm

        “You’re in despicable slander mode again.”

        Your defintion of slander appears to be “disagrees with me”

        “Either that or you’re ignorant of the definition of ‘felt up’ – meaning to touch someone sexually; for a female her breasts or buttocks or vagina for your own sexual excitement.

        Today would be a good day for you to GFY.”

        I am not debating the defintion of “felt up” I do not give a flying fig what the “defintion” is or what you think it is.

        All I care about is the ACTUAL CONDUCT.

        The ACTUAL CONDUCT that Biden has engaged in, is more offensive than the ACTUAL CONDUCT that Trump has.

        I do not give a damn WHY you are engaging in physical conduct with another person without their permission.

        AS I have said REPEATEDLY – you can not know what is in someone else’s head.
        Biden Tells us that he motives are not sexual – and maybe they are not.

        It is still an unwelcome intrusion on the actual body of other people.

        We are not required to have a contract to do so. Nor are we free to do so as we please without permission. If you reach to shake my hand – to actually have a handshake I must respond by reaching to you. If I do not and you FORCE the issue, then you have violated my right to my own body. It does not matter if you did so for some salacious reason, there really is not an acceptable reason.

        Next, absolutely trump’s remarks about women are offense.
        Offensive enough that I did not vote for him.
        Biden’s remarks are innocuous.

        Speech matters. But conduct matters MUCH MORE.

        The appropriate response to bad speech is nearly always MORE SPEECH.

        The response to the initiation of FORCE against others is FORCE.

        There are very very few legitimate constitutional laws against what we can say.
        All criminal laws are about restricting the use of force against others.

        Further, as noted Biden’s behavior with female Secret Service agents IS OVERTLY SEXUAL.
        So even in your motive based world – Biden is a big problem. The fact that he says his intentions are good, while Trump does not, neither changes his actions, nor the fact that some of his conduct reflects bad intentions.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 4, 2019 6:59 pm

        Your idiotic response is the perfect example of why what words mean MATTERS.

        It is not important that we disagree over defitions.

        It is very important that you play games with definitions to distort meaning.

        If we use completely different words and stick to comparing Trumps actual conduct to Biden’s actual conduct – without pretending to know what is going on in Trump’s or Biden’s heads,
        it is clear that Biden’s conduct is more widespread and offensive.

        Further – ones right to control of our own physical bodies is NOT limited to the domain of sex.

        If your physical contact of me is non-consensual – I am free to respond with FORCE.

        Non-consensual physical contact is the initiation of FORCE.

        There are myriads of reasons Biden could be engaged in the conduct he is.
        Without consent NONE are good.

        Though I am somewhat dubious of Sarah Carters explanation, I am obligated to accept what she has said – that Bidens conduct with her was consensual based on their broader relationship.

        The point which you do not get is that Biden’s conduct is not inherently wrong – whether it is sexual or not. It is inherently wrong – whether it is sexual or not, if there is no consent.

        And the same it true of Trump. Trump’s conduct is not inherently wrong – whether it is sexual or not. It is inherently wrong – whether it is sexual or not, if there is no consent.

        We have Trump SPEAKING that he does this without consent. But we have few if any actual instances where he has engaged in physical contact that was not consensual – whether it was sexual or not.

        We have Biden SPEAKING that his conduct is not sexual. I do not know if Bidens words are True. But I do know that in many instances Biden’s conduct is NOT CONSENSUAL.
        And that is what matters.

        It is irrelevant if all he is trying to do is establish through physical contact that he is the alpha dog in the room. If he contact is not wanted, it is creepy and wrong, and immoral.

        It is irrelevant if trumps conduct is overtly sexual, if it is consensual then it is not wrong or immoral, and you get to decide for yourself if it is creepy.

        When you mangle words, when you try to divorce what is communicated from the actual facts by playing games with defintions – you are engaging in misrepresentation, decepit.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 4, 2019 1:51 am

      I know lots and lots of men who brag about sexual conquests that never happened.
      Or misrepresent those they did have.

      Personally I think that those things are private. While my wife and I have been open with our kids about sex – in an age approriate manner, we did NOT talk about our own sex lives.
      My daughter sometimes tries to with me, and it creeps me out.

      But talking and acting are still completely different.

      • Jay permalink
        April 4, 2019 4:39 pm

        Bragging about something that didn’t happen and/or misrepresenting what happened – you mean lying.

        But you just mitigated Trump’s lying (every President/politician does it, remember?).
        And again you admit you’re fine with Trump as President either way: if he’s lying about pussy groping, forced tongue kissing, trying to have sex with the married wife of a friend, or if he in fact bragging about things he did – those are personal matters to ignore when a president mimics your own political agenda. The moral/ethical/sexual nature of a candidate should have no bearing on his/her election ( Except for Biden who you just excluded).

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:02 am

        “Bragging about something that didn’t happen and/or misrepresenting what happened – you mean lying.”

        Yes,
        But I would not preclude everyone who was misrepresented their sexual/romantic exploits or prowess from elected office.

        “But you just mitigated Trump’s lying (every President/politician does it, remember?).”
        Nearly every person does it.
        I don’t, but in my experience I am the exception in that regard, not the rule.

        “And again you admit you’re fine with Trump as President either way: if he’s lying about pussy groping, forced tongue kissing, trying to have sex with the married wife of a friend, or if he in fact bragging about things he did – those are personal matters to ignore when a president mimics your own political agenda.”

        No that is NOT what I have said. In fact I have explicitly and repeatedly said that I did not vote for Trump and that was one of the reasons.

        Further you rant about lying – and here you are misrepresenting what I have said, as well as the facts.

        I think talking about “pussy groping” is offensive. I have never said anything like that in my life. But I know alot of people who have.
        I think doing it is much worse.
        the people who have done it, are my wifes clients.

        I am offended by adultery – or attempted adultery. That means I am offended by half of american presidents – atleast.

        I did not decide that the issue of character was off the table politically.
        The left did explicitly with Clinton, though it was imolicitly off the table long before when Wilson, Harding, FDR, Eisenhower, Kennedy, and LBJ’s character were ignored.

        I still vote based on character. If you voted for Clinton – then you do not,
        So the hypocracy and ignoring character flaws is YOUR problem not mine.

        Nor am I about a mere “political agenda”

        The use of force without justification is IMMORAL – it is an issue of politics, or ideology, or philosophy and of character. It is the same as “pussy groping”.

        So no I do not see a huge difference between the person who gropes some woman’s pussy and the person who passes laws allowing the police to beat to death a man for selling lose cigarettes.

        My “political agenda” is to end figurative “pussy grabbing” by government.

        “The moral/ethical/sexual nature of a candidate should have no bearing on his/her election ( Except for Biden who you just excluded).”

        Beat the crap out of that straw man.

        Why BTW did you use sexual nature ? Is there some conduct that is moral and ethical, but is only offensive sexually ?

        As I have made clear regarding Biden – it does not matter whether his conduct is sexual, it is still immoral.

        I have also made clear that I did not vote for Trump primarily because of character issues.
        There were many reasons I did not vote for Clinton, having a worse character than Trump was only one of those.

        And as I have said above. what you call “my political agenda” IS about morality.

        You may not initiate force against another without justification.

        You may not “grab their pussy”.
        You may not restrict their freedom in other ways.

        That is about morality and ethics and doing so is BAD CHARACTER.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 4, 2019 1:54 am

      The way Trump talks about women is one of the big reasons I did not vote for him.

      The way Biden acts towards women is probably the most important reason I will not vote for him.

      If everything you say about Trump’s conduct towards women is correct and justifies not voting for him. The same can be said of Biden – and BTW Hillary.

      Hillary spoke of bimbo erruptions and tried to destroy the women Bill harrassed.
      While Hillary’s treatment of women was not sexual conduct, it was harrassment and despicable, frankly more so than Trump’s.

    • April 4, 2019 1:14 pm

      Jay, I’ve defended Biden, and so have most Republicans. It’s the extremist socialists who are doing this to him, to clear the decks for Bernie, Kamala, and the rest.

      So, your who argument about Trump, regardless of how right or wrong it may be, is irrelevant here.

      It’s the left who wants Biden out. And it looks like they are going to succeed.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 4, 2019 2:03 pm

        I agree that some on the progressive left are trying to clear the decks for a progressive, Ugg. I don’t know if they are going to succeed, I hope not. They may actually be doing him a favor. These complaints mostly sound silly, here is one: “Coll said she had been a Democratic staffer in 2008 when she was introduced to Biden at a reception. She told the Post that Biden complimented her smile and held her shoulders “for a beat too long.” ” Oh dear, Oh dearie dear. God only knows how many women might think I have done them wrong in my life if this is the standard.

        If this kind of thing is all that comes out then Biden may well survive and this may inoculate him against some wild BS that the loony right has been spreading about him for years, e.g he molests children. Please don’t tell me that this does it happen, Dave alleged here about a month back that Biden is a child molester. And that sort of rubbish from Dave may be what Jay is on about. Nothing like that has yet to be credibly alleged. As well, faked photoshopped pictures of Biden appearing to grab someone by the ass etc. are another currency of the right-wing loons, they have been at that game for years. So the right loons and the left loons have found a common purpose, smeer Biden to help their candidate. Ugg.

        If it should turn out that someone, or someones credibly allege that Biden has done something that actually is criminal or clearly is sexual misconduct, then it is also best to get this issue out now rather than later.

        So, they really piss me off, both the right loons and the left loons, and I wish the true hypocrites and malicious actors among them all catch a painful STD, but all the same they may be helping Biden to survive in the long run.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 2:12 am

        Robby,

        Ultimately defending Biden becomes defending Trump on the very same issues.

        There is an issue with Biden, The issue is that in most of these instances there is no consent in any form.

        We each control our bodies. Unless I am your underage child, you may not even put your hand on my shoulder without my consent.
        I am not going to address close freinds and intimates – consent is necescary there too, but we accept that consent might have been given previously.
        Much of Biden’s conduct is NOT with close friends and intimates.

        Is this the equivalent of the misconduct of Weinstein or Clinton ?
        No! Is it silly ? No, but it is also not huge.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 2:21 am

        “Dave alleged here about a month back that Biden is a child molester.”

        Please link to the post were I explicitly stated that “Biden is a child molester”.

        Can we end this ludicrous nonsense of false allegations.

        An awful lot of Biden’s conduct is with children, that is very disturbing.
        We have a much higher standard for the consent required for physical contact with children than we do with adults. We do not accept that Children are as free to give their own consent as adults.

        I beleive I have mentioned Pedophila on more than one occasion regarding this.
        But I did not accuse Biden of being a Pedophile.
        Doing the same things that Pedophiles do is NOT the same is being a pedophile.
        But it is creepy.

        I have repeatedly said that Biden’s conduct is much less egregious than Frankens (though there is a longer and more frequent pattern), as well as clinton’s. In fact I have said Biden’s treatment of women is less egregious than Hillaries.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 2:29 am

        I have never seen a fake photoshopped image of biden grabbing anyone on the ass.

        Given the 330M people in the country I would guess that someone has made one.

        But the criticism of Biden by those not on the left, is NOT based on fake accusations.

        It is based on actual conduct that is disturbing.
        It is based on conduct that if there was similar evidence of regarding Trump would have ended his campaign.

        I am making several points regarding Biden.

        First that there is more actual evidence of inappropriate conduct with Biden than with Trump.

        Next that all intentional physical contact requires consent.
        Whether it is Biden or Trump.
        We have a broad allowance for what constitutes consent.
        I have allowed that When Sarah Carter claims that Biden had that consent – we do not get to second guess her.
        At the same time Lucy Flores has stated that Biden did NOT have that consent.
        Nor did Biden have the consent of the parents of the teen and preteen girls he sidled up to.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 2:38 am

        Female Secret Serivce agents have alleged that Biden often went skinny dipping when they were on his detail. That is sexual misconduct.

        Beyond that I am not aware of any sexual allegations regarding Biden.

        I do not care What is in his head when he takes liberties with another persons body.

        Everything that is inappropriate is not sexual, and everything that is sexual is not inapproriate.
        Nor does something have to be criminal to be inappropriate.

        A great deal of what constitutes sexual harrasment is NOT criminal.

        Lucy Flores allegations are absolutely credible.

        I think Biden is the most likely democrat to be able to defeat Trump.
        At the same time I do not think he will.
        But I hope that if democrats are not going to go with Howard Schultz of someone like him,
        he is the least dangerous democratic candidate.
        He would do the least damage to the country if he were to win.

        I am not Biden’s enemy. I am not out to tank him early to clear the way for Trump.

        I am out to use is conduct to prove your hypocracy regarding Trump.

        I am also out to use his conduct to point out that it is not OK to force yourself on others physically – even if it is not sexual.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 1:32 am

        I am not “defending” Biden.

        I have problems with his conduct.
        But it is NOT as egregious as Clinton’s (either).

        Nor is Trump as egregious as Biden – though he is close.

        Jay rants about “proportionality”

        Those who absent evidence rank Trump as a sexual predator at a level comparable or greater than Clinton and make Biden into uncle joe, have zero sense of proportionality.

        If you want an absolute rule that people of bad character can not be president – Trump can not overcome that hurdle. But none of the recent presidents, and almost none of the candidates can either.

        I am the one constantly called an unrealistic ideological zealot,
        I am not the one making these extreme and false claims about president’s and character.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 1:36 am

        Of all the current democrats, Biden likely has the best chance to defeat Trump.

        But while Biden blunts the claim that democrats have fallen of the left edge of the world nuts, and he has more appeal to the blue collar group that won Trump 2016, at the same time, he suffers from the same problem as Romney did in 2012. Biden is “Trump-lite”.

        absent a recession, Trump will be re-elected probably in a landslide.

        Recent elections in Wisconsin suggest that Republicans are still in the game.
        Meanwhile the Trump Team seems to think that Virginia is in play.
        And they might be right. There are alot of purple states from 2016 that could be pink states in 2020.

  63. Jay permalink
    April 3, 2019 7:53 pm

    Feeding the Trump Swamp Creatures…

    “An @NBCNews review of those who donated to Trump inauguration finds at least 14 major contributors who were later nominees to become ambassadors, donating an average of slightly over $350,000 apiece.”

  64. dduck12 permalink
    April 3, 2019 10:23 pm

    Bzzzt. You are free to support anyone you want with oodles of money and/or lie about their lying. You don’t like that, then change the law you liberals and moderates. Only libertarians understand you cant force anyone to do anything from seat belts to pesticides to draining the swamp. Blub, blub.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 4, 2019 2:17 am

      “Bzzzt. You are free to support anyone you want with oodles of money and/or lie about their lying. You don’t like that, then change the law you liberals and moderates. ”
      Nope, you would have to change the constitution. Free speech, is a natural and constitutional right, it has the highest standard of protection.

      “Only libertarians understand you cant force anyone to do anything from seat belts to pesticides to draining the swamp. Blub, blub.”
      Nope, pretty much everyone understands that you can not use force willy nilly.

      Further you blur alot of things together.

      You can not actually force people to wear safetybelts. There are still about 15% of people who do not use them, despite the fact that the law has required it for 50 years.
      If the law went away tomorow – there would still be about 15% of people who do not use them. Interestingly New Englanders have the WORST compliance.

      You have a right to use pesticides on your own land. But if you do so in a way that causes actual harm to others, then you are responsible. That has been the law since before there were pesticides. You do not seem to grasp that we do not need laws that say you can not do X because it might harm someone, because we have had tort law for hundreds of years – which says “if you harm others, you are responsible”.

      This is a good parallel to gun control.
      It has ALWAYS been illegal to shoot someone absent self defense or defense of others.
      In has always been illegal to initiate force to harm others in anyway.

      All gun laws do, is make something that is already illegal. illegal, AND make conduct that was legal and not harmful also illegal.

      Are you talking about draining a literal swamp or the one in washington.

      “Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.”
      Kant. I do not beleive Kant called himself a libertarain. I do not beleive anyone was called libertarian at the time.

      BTW Kant’s catagorical imperative is the foundation of modern law.

    • April 4, 2019 3:19 pm

      Interesting. Thanks Jay.

      • Jay permalink
        April 4, 2019 4:46 pm

        Numerous accusations that Trump is a pervert:

        “Sexual misconduct allegations have been made against Trump by at least 19 women.[6] Trump has denied the allegations, saying that he has been the victim of media bias, conspiracies, and a political smear campaign.[7][8][9][10] In October 2016, Trump publicly vowed to sue all of the women who have made allegations of sexual assault (i.e. non-consensual kissing or groping) or sexual harassment against him, as well as The New York Times for publishing the allegations,[11][12] but he has yet to follow through with legal action.[13] – Wikipedia

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:13 am

        Please identify the specific allegations, the person making those allegations, any adjudication that has been made of those allegations.

        Failure to file a defamation claim for a false allegation is not proof the allegation is true.

        The allegations against Trump vary in many ways.

        Some are very credible – most of those are not very consequential.

        As an example Trump took no for an answer from a married woman that Trump was having an affair with. I think I beleive that allegation – though it was made in the context of a business dispute with her husband and ultimately she retracted the claim.

        There is also an allegation that Trump raped a 13 year old. That person, now an adult has tried to litigate that allegation in court 3 times. Each time the allegation barely got into the courtroom before being dismissed. The location of this alleged rape has moved across the country, in each instance Trump has proven that he was somewhere thousands of miles distant at the time of the alleged rape. I find that claim completely without credibilty

        There is ZERO dispute about most of biden’s conduct – we have lots of video.

        The only question is whether there was consent in some form.
        Lucy Flores says no.
        The assorted teens that Biden has handled could not consent.

        We are not dealing with a debate over what happened with Biden.
        The only issue is consent.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:15 am

        “I agree with you on this 100% Ron…”

        Then change the law regarding grand jury material.

        Also change Congress from a law making and oversight body to a criminal investigative and prosecutive body.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 4, 2019 6:33 pm

      Much of this is specualtion – and frankly pretty bad speculation.

      Small states – red or blue are likely to oppose. Shifting to a popular vote will disempower more than 3/4 of the states in the country.

      Further, there are important reasons for the electoral college and the empowerment of small states. The first of which is that the structuore of the constitution does NOT empower minority groups to DO things. It empowers them to STOP things.
      Fundimentally any large minority should ALWAYS be able to oppose the expansion of the powers of the federal government. It should ALWAYS be necescary to have super majority support to increase the power of government and to decrease the infringement on liberties.

      If you disempower significant minorities in the country you quite literally risk civil war.

      This is also why Trump is NOT an authoritiatian or totalitarian – he is actually ANTI-Authoritarian. Absolutely Trump wields power unilaterally, but nearly always to DISEMPOWER government.

      This is a fundimental concept that far to many do not get. As an example one of the major problems with PPACA is that at best it has never had more than plurality support. That is NEVER sufficient to increase the power of government.
      But the converse is NOT true. Any minority of sufficient scale – and that is not much, can UNDO what a plurality or even a majority has done. To preserve the status quo, you need super majority support.

      The left wants to pretend that once they have won on some issue that win is forever.
      That is only true if they are DISEMPOWERING government and respecting the rights of individuals.

      It should be nearly impossible to go backwards on the actual equal rights of different races, or genders or sexual orientation. But we should ALWAYS and easily be able to go backwards when government increases its power.
      If government tries something and it does not work, it should be easy to undo it.

      BTW the national popular vote compact is likely unconstitutional.
      If it is not then SCOTUS’s efforts to stiffle gerrymandering are unconstitutional.

      If you presume that the constitution litterally gives each state the right to do as it pleases,
      then you also have to take litterally the rest of what the constitution specifies – such as that congressional districts are the responsibility of congress and the state legislatures.
      Not the state governors, not the state courts.
      And lest say it was found constitutional. How long do you think it would take for a state whose electors were allocated based on the national popular vote compact rather than the majority of voters in the state decided to drop out of the compact ?
      The compact will only work so long as it does not effect the outcome of the election for that state. The moment it does the state will drop out of the compact.

      What you do not get to do is say we must ready the constitution as it says in one instance but not another.

      I would further point out – which is not addressed in the article, that changing might have radical political effects – it would dramatically screw over almost half the country in terms of rights. We already have a problem that when california changes their laws, those laws end up applying to all of us. But farmers as an example would be screwed. Washington would dictate rules regarding farming based on the idiotic ideas of city dwellers.

      At the same time it might have far less effect on such things as whether Trump gets elected.

      Trump barely campaigned in NY, and not at all in CA. Trump focused on wining the necescary electoral votes NOT winning the popular vote.

      Change the rules, and you do not automatically change the winner – but you do change the players strategies and tactics. Trump defeated Clinton because he better understood how to win the election. Change the rules – and he is STILL likely to be the winner. Just as if you change the rules of football such that the team with the most yards wins. You will change the way the game is played, but the great teams will remain great and the crappy ones crappy.

      Lastly why are we speculating on something that is never happening and would be bad if it did.

  65. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    April 4, 2019 12:28 pm

    https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/03/politics/mueller-investigators-report-worse-for-trump/index.html

    How do you play the flute? You blow in one end and move your fingers up and down. Perfectly true but not very helpful or revealing.
    Bill Clinton and trump have never been criminally charged with a sex crime. Also true. Doesn’t alter the fact that they are sexual predator, or that people cared and continue to care that our POTUS is so obviously an unashamed sexual predator. <– Analogies

    I have no doubt that it can be argued that the Barr summary was technically true. That does not mean it was not deceptive and very incomplete.

    The Barr summary did America no service, but it did give the trump team some chance to make claims and spin some spin before the actual Mueller report will give the actual details, which are not going to be pretty or reflect proper conduct of a candidate or POTUS.

    There is a Lot more to come on the actions of trump and his team and it will go into in the history books along with monica's dress etc. There will be more immediate effects as well.

    Let the so whating and but Obamaing begin, but blog spinning changes nothing and history is still recording.

    • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
      April 4, 2019 12:40 pm

      Ron, my sincere apologies for the need to continually dwell on this trump business , but that is how it is. Once we get a nixon, or a clinton, or a trump as president it is inevitable (and also appropriate) that their characters and the events that flow from them, will always be at the top of the news.

      • April 4, 2019 2:04 pm

        Roby, no problem. Issues like this to me is not about Trump, its about our government. If Joe Schmoo got elected and was investigatec by an SC or whatever they call them today, the findings need to go to congress.

        And I will cooment on issues like this, immigration, trade or anything else in the news. But I am ignoring Trump, the person TDS post as we have beat that horse to three deaths already.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 2:42 am

        “Roby, no problem. Issues like this to me is not about Trump, its about our government. If Joe Schmoo got elected and was investigatec by an SC or whatever they call them today, the findings need to go to congress.”

        BZZT, Wrong, and that is the point. This is NOT about Trump.

        We need to figure out what we need to do to assure that DOJ/FBI/CIA never investigate someone on such a crappy political allegation again. We need to make sure that there is never another SC appointed on this flimsy a basis.

        We need to make sure that Congress is NOT converting itself into a star chamber.
        Congress is NOT a criminal investigative body. They are not entitled to material from the investigation of private conduct.

      • April 5, 2019 10:36 am

        Dave “BZZT, Wrong, and that is the point. This is NOT about Trump.” Go back and READ what I said!!!!!!! I said this could be Joe Schmoo and I would want it going to congress. Thats MY opinion. That is not a regulation now. This “I did not, he did” crap is doing nothing but further dividing this country to the point that instead of hearing the left mention changes to undermine the constitution, they are actually finding loopholes to circumvent the constitution. (Liberal 14 state electoral vote compact)

        “We need to figure out what we need to do to assure that DOJ/FBI/CIA never investigate someone on such a crappy political allegation again. We need to make sure that there is never another SC appointed on this flimsy a basis.”

        This is another subject for debate, separate from the Mueller investigation. You know what I think of Mueller. That type crap should not happen again. Any investigation should be targeted, limited and confined to a specific issue and not an unlimited jack booted assault on anyone that shows up. Any info concerning non specific possible crimes should quitely be turned over to state or federal agencies and handled like any other crimes found in any investigation and not be made the headlines for days by the investigator or his team.

        So we can debate what should happen in the future with laws concerning investigating presidents. And that has nothing to do with what is inthe Mueller report or who should control who gets that info!

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 5, 2019 10:56 am

        “So we can debate what should happen in the future with laws concerning investigating presidents. And that has nothing to do with what is inthe Mueller report or who should control who gets that info!”

        Jeez, you left him an opening (saying that its currently April would leave him an opening). That is exactly what he will argue, I promise. Since he is an authority on “facts, reason, and logic” and he has the enthusiasm of 1000 energizer bunny when it comes to extending an argument, well, prepare yourself for a doozy of a proof that he is again, and as always, 100% right.

      • April 5, 2019 11:55 am

        Yep, and I will debate what should happen going forward. Neither one of us will “win” that debate because we both have our own ideas and they will never be tested.

        But I won’t take time to debate the actual report contents because they are unknown and I won’t take time to debate Trump because we know what he is and we have debated that for 2 years. But I will debate his policies, even though nothing will come of the debate for the most part.

        Just like my position on opening borders and letting everyone in because what we have is not working, Few will agree, but I won’t change until the laws are changed.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 7:16 pm

        Whether I am an authority is irrelevant.

        Until you make an actual argument, there is only one argument.

        I might make many many arguments of varying strength.
        but you continue to make NONE.

        Fallacy is not argument,
        Insult is not argument,
        Feelings are not argument.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 7:19 pm

        Again being right 100% of the time is not hard.

        Do not state as fact something that you have not verified.
        That is inside your abilities.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 4:50 pm

        Government can not act based on “oppinions” it acts based on the law.

        This entire debate is over the law.

        You and I have BOTH said repeatedly
        If you do not like the law – change it.

        Neither the law, not I personally support making the work product of criminal investigations public absent a prosecution.

        My desire in this instance to see more, does not change that whether it is Trump or Joe Shmoe, this is both a bad idea and illegal.

        At the same time mechanisms do exist to make public what can not ordinarily be made public.

        We need not and SHOULD not manufacture new ones from thin air.
        If you disagree – CHANGE THE LAW.

        I am not sure I agree that your Burr/Warner approach is a good idea.
        I am sure that it is still illegal.

        What we need to do is FOLLOW THE LAW.
        Starting TODAY.

        Not after we have ignored it to get what we want.

        We are in the death throes of this nonsense.
        Following the law will actually prolong the agony

        I think Trump and his people and most republicans – and even most democrats know that this is over and that this fight over the Mueller report is a pointless sideshow.
        It is a false hope.

        That every single thing Mueller has come up with could be posted on the internet tomorow and after a period of fixation on spin here and there and ludicrous claims that Mueller missed something or whatever, that eventually even the die hards will realize there is no there there.

        So the faster this is resolved the better.

        But what I think is ultimately Trump and the GOP’s best interests – to get through this fast, is NOT the law.

        FOLLOW THE DAMN LAW
        Or CHANGE IT.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 1:09 am

        “Ron, my sincere apologies for the need to continually dwell on this trump business , but that is how it is. ”
        No it is not, there is no obligation to continue to lie.
        There is no force compelling you to defame others.
        You are free to stop at anytime.
        Rebuilding your integrity can not start until you stop selling the lies.

        “Once we get a nixon, or a clinton, or a trump as president it is inevitable (and also appropriate) that their characters and the events that flow from them, will always be at the top of the news.”

        Correction – Nixon, Clinton or Obama.

        Obstruction of justice,
        lying under oath,
        using the CIA, FBI, DOJ IRS to go after political enemies.
        That is all true of Nixon, Obama and Clinton.

        None of it is true about Trump.

        The “spinning” is yours. You have made nothing into a crime, and many crimes into nothing.
        That is the events that flow from YOUR bad character.

        Robby, you are an intelligent person – you are capable of letting go.
        You need not self destruct.

        The choices you have made and continue to make are your own.
        No one made you.

        However you feel about Trump – even if much of that were True, that does not change the actual facts.

        The Trump Collusion lie was always still born. It lies in front of us stinking and putrifying at our feet. Why are you trying to give it CPR, It is dead. Wise people understood that long ago.

        Continuing to flog it is self harm.

    • April 4, 2019 1:58 pm

      Anyone that tries to say congress should not have the unredacted report is either nieve, a trump administration official or a trump supporter.

      I dont care what the investigation or what the party. There are individuals in congress that have security clearances to receive secret information. Those individuals have secret information daily.

      So based on our governments structure, why can any president or administration keep the peoples information from congress. Someone in congress should be the ones deciding what grand jury information and witness names is redacted. And I would support the senate and not the house as they are the adults in Washington and seem to be able to come up with some conclusions with less political bickering. Those like Schiff sitting in the sand box would continue throwing sand and never agree if an “is” “was”, “he/she” should be redacted, let alone “John Smith, in his testimony to the GJ” being redacted.

      But no president, they or their minions, should be able block information from congress when congress request that info.If they want to, they need a civics lesson on three equal branches with a weak presidential office.

      • Jay permalink
        April 4, 2019 4:49 pm

        I agree with you on this 100% Ron…

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 1:51 am

        Ron, leaking grand jury material is a CRIME!!!!

        I am not opposed to transparency.

        Though I do have alot of serious issues here.

        Congress is NOT a criminal investigative body.
        They have neither the right nor the constitutional power to pry into private people.
        Their role is OVERSIGHT.
        What they should have near limitless access to is all conduct associated with governing.

        The issue is NOT security clearances. It is the right to privacy of private individuals.

        Because of false allegations I and several others were subject to a criminal investigate.
        That investigation not merely found nothing – like Mueller is ultimately “exonerated” me.

        I have much, but not all of what was gathered by that investigation.
        Most of that I had to aquire myself – as part of other legal conflicts.

        The DA’s office had the choice of prosecuting or doing nothing.
        Having done nothing I control what of the material related to that investigation becomes public – not the congress, not the DA’s not my accusers.

        I am likely to make almost everything public at some point.
        But those who made the false accusation, do not have the right to “go public”.
        That would actually be defamation, and I would take them to the cleaners.

        This is NOT “the peoples information”.
        The people already know what they are entitled to know.
        Barr has said more than is normally ethically possible to say.

        I do hope most of this is made public.
        But there is no right of the people or congress to have any of this.

        I expect it will actually nearly all be made public.
        Because it is in Trump’s interests, as well as those who were persecuted to air this all.

        But the right to determine what is made public always belongs to those falsely accused.
        That is why grandjury material may not be made public.

      • April 5, 2019 10:09 am

        1. Yes, I know leaking grand jury material is a crime. So how does that fit into my position the review should be in the senate where they can act and agree, where in the house they are only thinking of the next election.
        2. Yes, I know congress is not an investigative body. How does that affect my position that congress is an equal partner in government, that an investigation of the president and that report should be available to congress and any president should not be able to block information from going to congress? That should only happen in countries without a democratic process, especially in the USA where the president should be the weakest link in the three segments of government.
        3. Yes, private individuals have a right to privacy when a criminal investigation is completed. However, the president, in my mind, and in many others minds, is not a private citizen. They are hired by the American people (stockholders) to lead their country and this position should.not be able to hide information about th eir actions pertaining to that job, much the same as CEO’s can not hide information from business stockholders without getting fired.
        4. I also hope this is made public. But anything that comes out with the president involved in redacting will not solve the problem. That being a more severely divided country. (YES, IKNOW PUBLICALLY TRUMP IS NOT PERSONALLY REDACTING! But his minion is. Now try convincing me Barr is not redacting to protect his boss!)
        5. If Burr/Warner did the redacting, that would put a cork in Schiff’s, et al, mouths.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 5, 2019 10:36 am

        Of course his answer had little or nothing to do with your point. Dave’s standard is not that he must make a convincing or correct denial/denunciation. His standard is that he must say something, anything, no matter how absurd, in his best voice of authority so that he can claim that he has “addressed” any topic. The lengthier and more numerous his replies are the more he is arguing that black is white by talking about something else entirely.

        He might have made a good politician or at least a spokesman for one.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 4:38 pm

        Robby;

        This entire mess is ABSURD. What I post is nearly the only thing Rational.

        The LAW makes the release of GJ material a CRIME.

        We all know this.
        The LAW also makes everything related to any investigation EXCEPT what is provided in court during a prosecution confidential

        We all know that.

        The fact that most of us WANT much more – and that includes myself, does not create a RIGHT to have it.

        I fully expect we will get nearly everything soon enough.

        But we should not throw out our law because of “feelings”.

        THAT is ABSURD.

        If I am Wrong about the LAW – cite that.

        Insulting an argument is a fallacious response.

        Arguments are not overcome by calling them names.
        They are defeated by FACTS, LOGIC, REASON.

        You pretty much NEVER actually address ANY argument I make.
        Prefering to insult the argument

        Just calling an argument absurd or any of your other array of fallacious responses is NOT a refutation.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:25 pm

        Providing Grand Jury Material – even to the house or Senate is STILL a crime.

        A prosecutor can not even share GJ material with other prosecutors who are not investigating the same or related crimes.

        The house and senate are NOT criminal investigative bodies.

      • April 5, 2019 4:32 pm

        “Providing Grand Jury Material – even to the house or Senate is STILL a crime.”

        Not if they change the law as I have proposed!

        This whole damn investigation has been wrapped up in politics from the beginning, including Rosenstein naming Mueller and not someone else to investigate.

        Politics have to be removed because it will only get worse in future presidencies because parties love pay backs.

        And that is why I proposed some change so this does not happen again. Someone in this country is smart enough to create a process where once an investigation is completed, the people have confidence in any future process. And the investigative process should not be based on po!itics.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 12:40 am

        “Not if they change the law as I have proposed!”

        And I will vigorously oppose that.

        We have discussed some kind of truly independent public intergrity prosecutor.

        I think that would be an excellent idea, but getting it right is difficult to impossible.
        And not getting it right makes things worse.

        I do not want ordinary police officers or DA’s trying cases in the press.

        The government speaks about those they investigated by prosecuting them.
        Otherwise they stand mute.

        I do see the Mueller report being made public – when all those whose rights might be infringed sign off. Trump already has.

        I do not care if it takes a while to follow the law as it is.

        Speeding things up is NOT a justification for abridging peoples rights.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:34 pm

        2).

        Congress is entitled to an extrodinary amount of information regarding the president AS PRESIDENT. If Trump engaged in criminal activity AS PRESIDENT they have a great deal of power to investigate.

        Investigative material on peoples conduct at a time they were not public servants is not inside the scope of congress. If Mueller is not prepared to indict, or specific to the president assert that he has comitted an indictable offense (as a private person) then that information is not congresses business.

        This is again why the AG should review Mueller’s report and determine – following the law, what can be made public.

        Though none of the “obstruction” arguments have merit, they are all inside the scope of what congress can inquire about – they are conduct under color of authority.

        There is alot of Mueller’s information that can be made public or given to congress, and alot more than can be made public or given to congress – AFTER the appropriate process and permissions have been obtained.

        We follow that process – not because of Trump, but to avoid future lawlessness

        The worst part about this mess is that it will define the norms for the future.
        And that is why everything that was done WRONG within government must have consequences.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:36 pm

        A democratic process does not mean that you should be allowed to know whatever you wish to know about someone who was targetted for criminal investigation.
        Particularly when the targetting was egregiously unjustified.

        The SC is NOT the national enquirer.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:39 pm

        What is private and what is not – is not about what is in your mind.

        The presidents conduct as president – is NOT private, nor is Clinton’s conduct as Sec. State.

        The current presidents prior conduct as a private person or political candidate is private.
        An investigation of that conduct that does not lead to a evidence of an indictable offense, is not the business of the public.

        We went through this mess with Clinton. It was wrong then, it is wrong now.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:56 pm

        I do not like Barr. I do not think he was a good choice.
        I do not think he was hired to “protect his boss”.
        I think he is apply the law TOO broadly.
        In otherwords in ways that are more harmful to Trump.

        All that said I do think though he is wrong on many things, that Barr is actually applying the law as he sees it. Not to protect Trump.

        I would also ask why is everyone in such a hurry ?

        There is really only one scenario here that is a serious problem.

        That is if Barr’s memo is false. And if that is the case, then that will eventually come out and Barr would almost certainly be guilty of obstruction of justice.

        But all of us know that is not the case.

        Barr is not lying when he claims that Mueller will not make further indictments.
        Barr is not lying when he claims that Mueller found no further indictable offenses.
        Barr is not lying when he claims that Mueller found no collusion.
        Barr is not lying when he claims that what Mueller found was not obstruction.

        We all know these are all true – even most of those on the left.
        We also know that if Barr is lying about any of these he will be caught eventually.

        Is there anyone here who expects any new facts or evidence from the Mueller report ?

        What we are after is NOT the facts or evidence of the Mueller investiation, We all know all of that.
        What we are after – what the left is after is Mueller’s “spin”.
        Prosecutors get to “spin” when they are willing to prosecute – though even their they should stick to the facts and evidence. They do not get to “spin” when they are unprepared to prosecute.

        I do not give a fig about Mueller saying “we investigated the crap out of Trump and found nothing, but Trump is a bad guy who must have done something wrong”.

        I want the greatest possible transparency – even in this.
        But I do not want to change the norms, and the law – without actually changing the law.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 4:02 pm

        No Burr/Warner should not make the decisions.

        First these are legal decisions, not political ones.

        What may be released is not based on what we want to know, it must be based on what we are allowed to know. Or what we have permission to know.

        BTW Barr has already publicly stated that he has taken Trump’s public statements as a WAIVER of any rights that he (Trump) might have to object or control redaction.

        I would further note that Rosenstein has also signed off on the Barr memo, and Rosenstein is part of this process.

        Rosenstein was supposed to be gone by now, What I am hearing is that Barr is forcing Rosenstein to be part of this through to the end.
        That Barr has essentially told Rosenstein – “you made this mess, you will stay here and help clean it up, and this time, we are following the law”. –

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 1:56 am

        “So based on our governments structure, why can any president or administration keep the peoples information from congress. Someone in congress should be the ones deciding what grand jury information and witness names is redacted. ”

        Based on our governments structure the control of Grand Jury material belongs to THE COURTS, not congress.

        No Congress should NEVER be deciding what evidence from a grand jury is redacted.

        The law actually prohibits releasing grand jury information AT ALL – in its ENTIRETY.

        I think this is all going to get out.

        But lets quit pretending that because house democrats are throwing a hissy fit, that they are legal right.

        I know that democrats seem to think that now are. but they are NOT an independant criminal investigative/prosecutive arm of the DOJ.
        There roles are making law, and executive oversight. Not private oversight.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 2:05 am

        “But no president, they or their minions, should be able block information from congress when congress request that info.If they want to, they need a civics lesson on three equal branches with a weak presidential office.”

        That statement is both false – Trump is not blocking anything.,
        And false – congress is not entitled to whatever information they want.

        Trump has told Barr that the whitehouse will not participate in the decision to redact material.
        Barr has publicly anounced that has said that he is NOT consulting the whitehouse in making his determinations.

        So any claim that Trump is interfering is false.

        Separately, congress is not entitled to whatever information it wants about investigations into the private conduct of us citizens. Congress is also not entitled to the communications between a president and subordinates – that is establish “executive privilege”.

        As an example Trump could have asserted executive privilidge and barred Comey from testifying to congress about ALL his communications with Trump as president.

        Trump did not assert executive priviledge. Bannon was on CNN recently and stated that Trump, McGahn, and Sekolow decided early on that they were not going to fight anything with Mueller. Trump’s frustration with Mueller has been LESS that he has pried into everything in creation, but that he has drug this out forever. The decision of Trump and his legal team was to provide everything – millions of documents, never get into a priviledge fight with Mueller – that is as compared to Clinton who fought EVERYTHING, Trump wanted this investigation over in 6 months. And it should have been.

      • April 5, 2019 10:14 am

        “So any claim that Trump is interfering is false.”

        Please provide documentation on this.

        Or is that based on what our “I’ll never tell a lie” President said?

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 4:30 pm

        “Please provide documentation on this.”

        It is in Barr’s 2nd memo to congress, Which I linked to previously.
        Barr has made public statements,
        and it has been reported by the press.

        Further Trump has said publicly and repeatedly that Barr should release everything.
        and Barr has said publicly that he has taken Trump’s public remarks as direction from the president and that he has not been contacted by the whitehouse privately.

      • April 5, 2019 9:05 am

        Ron, I disagree on releasing the unredacted report for a few reasons. (No doubt, I may be influenced by my own personal bias, but I also believe that the unredacted report would probably help Trump more than it would hurt him, so that mitigates my bias, at least somewhat) :

        1, First of all, what Dave said. Grand jury testimony that does not result in the indictment of anyone cannot and should not be released, even to Congress. Mueller and his team had plenty of time and money to investigate GJ testimony that was damning, and if they ultimately concluded that it was not true, it should not be released. It would leak immediately, and there would be no way to undo the damage to whomever was hurt by it. I believe that anyone who thinks that it would not be weaponized is either naive or dreaming.

        I see no reason why Barr should be commanded by Congress to break the law, especially since he is working with Mueller on redactions which the Mueller team itself recommended.

        2. Again, neither Trump nor his lawyers have seen the report, nor have they had a chance to write a rebuttal This is a purely prosecutorial report ~ in other words, it is already intended to hurt the president. His side should get a chance to review and respond, especially to any material that is damaging but ultimately untrue.

        3. This inquisition (and I use that word intentionally) began as a counterintelligence investigation, to determine whether Russia had interfered in our presidential election, and whether Trump or any of his associates cooperated or conspired in that. It quickly became an obstruction investigation. Any time Trump said that the investigation was a “witch hunt,” could technically be used against him, despite the fact that he never once tried to stop or impede Mueller’s team. If Rod Rosenstein, who appointed Mueller, and wrote the scope letter and expanded it, says that nothing that Trump did rose to the level of obstruction, why should Schiff and Nadler be able to use potentially biased testimony to argue otherwise?

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 5, 2019 10:47 am

        What bet would you like to make that the actual Mueller report, redacted or unredacted, somehow helps trump when it is finally dragged out of his administration?

        I have a suggested bet: If the actual Mueller report truly fully exonerates trump of obstruction and thus actually helps him I will write Donald Trump is a very stable genius 100 times and post it.

        And if it does not fully exonerate him of obstruction (because that is what it would take for the report to help him) and in fact contains considerable evidence that trump Did attempt to obstruct justice, you will write Donald trump is a scheming, lying, misogynistic, sexual predator who is unfit to be president 100 times and post it.

        Seriously, I can hardly imagine a scenario were the full report helps him.

        If it would somehow help him, it would be out already.

      • April 5, 2019 10:56 am

        I think that the elements of the report that indicate obstruction will be weak, that they will further indicate that Trump has done little other than to publicly defend himself against what he believes is a politically motivated “witch hunt,” and to use his granted Article 2 powers in a constitutional manner.

        So, I will take your bet. 😊

        I just wonder how we will agree on “exoneration.” Basically the DOJ has already exonerated him, but you’re saying that Barr and Rosenstein are wrong. So, how do I win? 😉

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 5, 2019 11:01 am

        My third paragraph is written such that you almost can’t win.

        “And if it does not fully exonerate him of obstruction (because that is what it would take for the report to help him) and in fact contains considerable evidence that trump Did attempt to obstruct justice..”

        In the end, no matter what happens we will both claim to have won. Because this is politics not mathematics. Neither of us is going to do any writing unless hell freezes.

      • April 5, 2019 11:20 am

        So it’s heads you win, tails I lose, haha.

        This is where we are, in the age of Trump. Very unfortunate, and I maintain that both sides are to blame. Not equally, but enough that we should all be engaging in debate, not condemnation…

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 5, 2019 11:35 am

        It sounds nice. But to be pointy about it, when your defence of the least dangerous dem candidate is that he was taken off the garbage heap and has accomplished nothing in his life I have the idea that I am hearing a lot of condemnation. And for a person like myself not condemning trump the person would be like not breathing.

        If, god forbid, trump should happen to choke on a sandwich before 2020 and a sane conservative prominent republican, and I could name names, lets start with Sasser, were to be the GOP nominee, I would be utterly relieved and happily watch the bernie sanders version of the dem party get shellacked, I’d be hoping their candidate got destroyed (but also hoping that the dems would hold onto one part of congress. In other words, I am not a conservative but that are quite a few sane conservatives who I could accept as POTUS and stop hyperventilating.

        I have my doubts that you could tolerate any democrat other than a rather conservative one, and would not tolerate any liberal, not even a moderate one and they would soon be someone off the garbage heap who has no accomplishments in life in your rhetoric..

        So, condemnation is likely to continue into the future until some party miraculously chooses a sane, capable non divisive nominee and they become POTUS.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 10:43 pm

        “It sounds nice. But to be pointy about it, when your defence of the least dangerous dem candidate is that he was taken off the garbage heap and has accomplished nothing in his life I have the idea that I am hearing a lot of condemnation. And for a person like myself not condemning trump the person would be like not breathing.”

        Presumably we can nearly universally agree that the 2016 candidates were notoriously bad,
        While there are differences in 2020, they are not improvements.
        Criticising candidates who deserve criticism should be acceptable to any of us.
        Condemning people who are pretty bad should not be lamentable.

        The poor quality of candidates overall is not and excuse for the pretense that one is infinitely worse or more dangerous than the others.

        I do not care that you condemn Trump or anyone else.
        I care when you make false moral claims about another.

        I also care when you advocate for the use of force without justification.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 10:46 pm

        Robby,

        No one beleives the “god forbid” part of your statement. If something bad happened to Trump, you and myriads of others would be anywhere from secretly smiling to dancing in the streets.

        If Trump dies before 2020, the GOP candidate will near certainly be Cruz.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 10:55 pm

        I lived through Bill Clinton as president. Talk about bad character ?
        Further he was a failure at foreign policy. But otherwise he was actually a good president.
        Better that either Bush, Better that Trump.
        I lived through Obama as president.
        I did not wish for him to have a stroke, or choke on a sandwich,
        Nor did I or anyone else attempt a coup against him.
        He was still a poor president.
        I thought he was a good person – with character, I tried to blame the bad things that happened during his presidency on zealous underlings.
        No More. Obama’s character was poor. The fish rots from the head down.
        He rant the most politically corrupt administration in my lifetime – including that of Nixon and LBJ.

        Is there a democrat I could vote for ? Not one that has a shot.
        But I would not be looking to impeach them or manufacture faux criminal complaints against them.
        I would not be pretending that there conduct was 1000 times more egregious than it was.

        Trump is not a good person.
        He is not a good president.
        He is just the best president we have had in 18 years.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 11:41 pm

        All you need to do to stop hyperventilating is to stop, just stop.

        America will not only survive Trump, it will be better off. It will be better off than if hillary had won, it will be better off than if Obama had 8 more years.

        Is it possible that with Trump as president everything will go to hell. Anything is possible.
        It the Chaos that is Trump disturbing and uncomfortable – sure.
        But based on the past, the future will be better with trump than any viable democratic choice

        There is no basis for hyperventalation.

        Is it possible to come up with an even better candidate than Trump ?
        Absolutely and regardless of party. But there is not one currently
        Give me better as a democrat and I will vote for them.

        And no, I am not going to pick an untried quasi socialist with “government” (also known as NO) experience over a tested mediocre president of poor character with a penchant for exageration

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 11:43 pm

        Neither of the parties are ever likely to choose a candidate you will be happy with.
        They are not going to choose one I am happy with either,
        But I am not howling at the moon over it.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 7:25 pm

        Law is much closer to mathemtaics than politics.

        Regardless, one of the reasons you are a creature of the left, is because – you make everything a matter of opinion and beleif.

        I have asked you repeatedly for principles – you have offered none. Without principles everything is a matter of beleif or feelings.

        In Barr’s first memo to congress, Barr did an excellent job of laying out why based ont he requirements of the law there was no obstruction. He noted 4 independent flaws in any obstruction claim – only one of which needed to be true to tank that claim.

        This is not even close Robby.

        What infuriates everyone about the left – and you, is that without principles, you can assert anything that you feel like. Without principles there is never anything that is right or that is wrong. Without principles, you can hold to any position forever because there is no way to discredit any thing without principles.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 7:13 pm

        The mueller report will provide no facts we do not already have.
        It will debunk many facts we think we have.

        Beyond that and far less significantly it will provide Mueller’s opinion on the facts and the law. Those are not of much importance.

        Mueller’s Oppinion, Robby’s oppinion, Jay;s oppinion, … as to what constitutes obstruction the words of the law narrowly construed are what matters – and we already know those.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 7:10 pm

        “What bet would you like to make that the actual Mueller report, redacted or unredacted, somehow helps trump when it is finally dragged out of his administration?”

        Why would I bet with you ? You are incapable of seeing reality.
        I can not predict what effect the actual Mueller report will have on Robby World.

        What I will BET, is that there is no consequential evidence we have not already heard that is not exculpatory.

        I could care less what Mueller’s “oppinions” or “spin” are.

        As to “fully exonerates” – again your not in reality.

        Examining every claimed vector for collusion and finding each to be false.
        Scouring the communications and emails of every alleged vector and finding no contact illegal contact, Looking not merely under every rock, but under every dust particle and finding nothing.

        that is “fully exonerated” to me.

        Just a few days ago, you were posting that you never really beleived in trump/russia collusion. That was false – a lie, but I was prepared to let you slide.

        But lets be clear – you are OWNING it now. I am not interested after this nonsense that maybe Barr is lying, that you never really beleived.

        As to obstruction:

        I really do not care what Mueller says.

        Absent an underlying crime there are few instances in which we should EVER try to prosecute anyone for obstruction.

        Forget presidents, we should almost never prosecute innocent people for doing everything in their power to avoid being falsely convicted.

        Do you honestly have a problem with that ?

        While that does not ABSOLUTELY kill obstruction, There is no claim that Trump kneecapped a witness against him. There is no claim that Trump obstructed Justice that constitutes crime in and of itself.

        Next, As many attorney’s including Barr have asserted the law precludes obstruction for anyone who is acting as they are lawfully empowered to do.
        That is ABSOLUTE!

        There are numerous other elements required for obstruction that are also not present, and those too are ABSOLUTE.

        I doubt you will ever be convinced there was no obstruction.
        It is near impossible to discredit a religious beleif.

        BTW I do not thing Trump is “a very stable genuous”
        Nor am I after your humiliation.
        I am way past expecting anything out of you.
        As John Welch said “Have you at last no sense of decency ?”
        You have answered that – NO!
        Even Joe MacCarthy ultimately stuck his tail between his legs and the witch hunt ended.
        But I have little hope of any self awareness on your part.

        You are going to beleive probably until you die.
        And you will likely beleive the next stupid allegation that arises.

        There is not crime of “attempted obstruction of justice”.

        With specific reference to “obstruction”

        If Mueller does not provide EVIDENCE – not oppinion and spin, of some obstructive event that is not already public knowledge – that is the END of obstruction.

        The publication of the Mueller report – absent new actual evidence DOES NOT alter the lack of merit to the bogus obstruction claims that have been made already.

        So tickle that pushes a public relitigation of resolved issues, does not change anything or make them more credible than first time through.

        As to a Scenario where the report Help’s Trump – that is trivial. Reality!!!.

        I have just about zero doubt that Mueller’s report is not going to add anything to our existing knowledge – beyond Mueller’s opinion. So long as that is the case – the ability of the left to pummel Trump over russia diminishes greatly, Further the absence of credible collusion means The left, and the media have been lying, and Trump has been telling the Truth.

        The public is slowly coming arround to that.

        There are two things that were inevitable consequences of the post 2016 outrage of the left.

        The first is that the outrage would eventually run out of fuel and die. That is finally happening.
        The bottom line is that Trump is just NOT the end of the world. However he might offend you, he is on net a better president than the past 2.

        The 2nd is that there will be a backlash as a consequence of the years of outrage.

        We saw some of that in the WI supreme court election. Against all odds a conservative republican won. And he appears to have won BECAUSE the left tried to paint him as lunatic fringe.

      • April 5, 2019 11:49 am

        Priscilla,
        I know:
        1. GJ material is confidential.
        2. Congress does not have a right to this info.
        3. Congress is not (as Dave says) an investigative body
        4. Trump, nor his attorneys, have not seen the report.
        5. Democrats are further dividing the country by a continued accusal of Trump of Russian collusion, claiming Barr is blocking release of pertinent information that shows he had ties with Russia.
        6. Barr is further dividing the country by refusing to release whatever he can release to counter the Democrat message.
        7. And I KNOW I would like to see a temporary team of maybe six DA’s, AG’s or other elected legal experts created from a list made up of individuals from states or districts where the vote would be considered “purple” (further definition would need to be developed, but eliminates NY, CA and other local far right or far left individuals). From this list, the committee chairs (majority and minority) for the ethics committee in the house and senate would each pick a representative as well as the house speaker and minority leader. This committee would then be the first to receive any information obtained concerning investigations of any house rep., senator or President, with redaction’s, recommendations, etc coming from that group who has the expertise to determine what should happen without politics coming into play. I don’t ever want to see another Mueller type investigation nor the resulting comments based on unsubstantiated innuendo and rumors that ends up dividing this country . And if that would take a constitutional amendment, then so be it, that is what I would like to see or something of that nature. We don’t need any more blow jobs or Russian investigations unless they are handled in a more non political nature.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 11:57 pm

        According to Glenn Greenwald a left wing reporter who has been right from the start on Russia.

        The recent leaks purportedly from the Mueller team critising the Barr memo do not help democrats at all – even if the leak is true. Greenwald notes that most purported Mueller leaks have proven false.

        These Leaks DO NOT attack the part of the Barr memo that claims no evidence of Collusion.
        They fixate entirely on the obstruction portion.

        Mueller refused to make a recomendation regarding Obstruction.
        That is game over for the leakers.
        If your boss is unwilling to say there was obstruction YOU ARE DONE.

        As many have noted, by failing to reach a conclusion on Obstruction Mueller punted to Barr.

        Unless you are a left wing nut, you can not say “I can not decide, you decide” and then criticise the decision as wrong.

        Further releasing the Mueller report then gives you NOTHING.

        The question of obstruction is one of law, not evidence. The mueller report will merely provide you the legal reasoning of Mueller’s zealots who could not let go of a losing argument.

        Regardless, their legal argument is NOT hidden evidence. It is a legal argument.
        One you can easily find from myriads of left wing nut legal pundits all over the web.

        You have Barr’s argument in his memo to congress, and you have Dershowitz’s and myraids of other actually capable constitutional scholars.

        Nothing has been hidden from you, and the Mueller report will give you nothing you do not already have.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 12:02 am

        6). Is there ANYONE who actually ever expected every bit of Mueller’s millions of pages of evidence to be made public ?

        Everyone has presumed that whatever Barr releases in Mid April will be nefariously redacted, when we do not have it yet.

        Is there someone that thought a 400 page document could go through DOJ review in less than 2 weeks ?

        We have been waiting over a year for DOJ to complete reviews on documents the GOP house subpeona’d and we still do not have them.

        Barr’s summary was an effort to end this, to warn all of us that what was coming would not live up to the lefts hopes and expectation. If he is lying about that he is toast.

        But anyone trying to claim ahead of time that Barr’s summary is a whitewash is ranting without a basis.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 12:06 am

        7). Then CHANGE THE LAW!!!

        All that is required by law is the Memo that Barr has provided.
        Barr could stop with that and this would be done – except the howling and outrage.

        I would like to see Barr do more, and he has promissed to do so.

        But I am not going berzerker because Barr is following the law and I do not like the law.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:01 pm

        My primary concern regarding all of this is the future.

        We must do what is necescary to NOT have this happen again.

        What occured in the obama administration/DOJ/CIA/FBI/NSA/State is exactly what Nixon dreamed of.

        That can NEVER occur again.

        It should be self evident that it is far too easy to use DOJ/FBI/CIA in ways they should not be used. It does not matter whether that is targetting a political oponent or really targetting anyone or anything.

        Credible allegations of violations of the law should drive investigations and prosecutions,
        not personal or political agendas.

        There is a standard for getting a warrant in the constitution – that MUST be restored to meaningfulness. When law enforcement swears out a warrant that is a LIE, there must be consequences.

        The kind of tactics Mueller has been using for decades, must be stopped.

        As to the Mueller report – everything about it is some faint hope from the left against all odds for salvation. It is a giant hail mary.

        It should be self evident to anyone with a brain that there has never been enough evidence to START this investigation. I really do not give a crap about all these leaks and rumours that somehow there is something in it that is damaging to Trump.

        Absolutely!!! The SPIN of a corrupt prosecutor. That is all. I have very little interest in Mueller or his henchmen’s opinions on anything. Absent some new FACTS, which are not going to be there, and we know that.
        There are going to be no further indictments. What that means is that Mueller’s team found nothing they can continue to pursue. Whatever spin they put on things THEY, decided they are DONE. THEY decided using standards far broader than the law allows to look under every grain of sand and they found nothing.

        I am very much concerned about setting a future precident here.

        Congress is NOT a criminal investigative body. They are there for legislation and government oversight. There is almost nothing in the SC investigation that is inside their domain.

        No I do not want Congress pulling ANYONE’s Tax return.
        I do not want them getting grand jury material on ANY criminal investigations.
        Even their actual oversight of criminal investigations of private acts and actors should be severely constrained.

        While I understand the point of releasing everything, and absolutley I think Trump will benefit more than be harmed.

        That is NOT the criteria for deciding.
        We should not be deciding to violate the rule of law, based on who benefits.

        I do not think the Mueller report should be provided to congress AT ALL.
        Have AG Barr testify. Have Mueller testify.

        If congress want Grand Jury materials – they should go to the courts to get them.
        Congress does NOT get to decide what it is entitled to in a criminal investigation.

        Any investigative material involving ANY target, subject or witness that has not been indicted, should require the approval of that person to be made public.

        Prosecutors are not gossip columnists. It is not their job to dig up embarrasing but not criminal dirt on others. Nor is it their job to serve as the OPO research arm for one political party.

        There is pretty much only ONE exception I can think of to the default answer is NO!

        That is that congress is entitled to investigative material involving PUBLIC corruption.
        That is the conduct of people acting as agents of the federal government.

        To use Clinton as an example – Congress is NOT entitled to know whatever the FBI found about the Clinton Foundation. They ARE entitled to know everything that is found regardig Clinton’s conduct as Sec State – that would include exchanges with the CF, but it would NOT include anything internal to CF. They are entitled to everything associated with the investigation of the Clinton email server, that was a public crime.

      • April 5, 2019 4:16 pm

        Dave, you say you care about the future. Then you go on to say ” I really do not give a crap about all these leaks and rumours that somehow there is something in it that is damaging to Trump. ”

        I have said this in a few different ways and you have not read or understood what I have said. So will try this.

        If you are concerned about the future, then you should be concerned about future elections. Future elections are decided by current and future voters. Right now a huge portion of voters dont give a damn about the facts you are concerned about and want to know. Few voters take any time to understNd facts, understand our constitution or our government.

        Future elections are decided by future voters based on spin, fake.news and propagada. You state “The SPIN of a corrupt prosecutor. That is all. I have very little interest in Mueller or his henchmen’s opinions on anything. Absent some new FACTS, which are not going to be there, and we know that.
        There are going to be no further indictments. What that means is that Mueller’s team found nothing they can continue to pursue. Whatever spin they put on things THEY, decided they are DONE. THEY decided using standards far broader than the law allows to look under every grain of sand and they found nothing.”

        You are one of the few, like me, that have little interest in what Mueller said. But people vote on spin. I just had a good old liberal friend stay for a visit. Almost every word that came out of his mouth was MSNBC spin, how Trump is guilty, how Barr is covering up, blah, blah, blah.

        He votes.Most Americans vote based on Fox or MSNBC type spin. They dont vote facts!!! And when a Warren/Sanders, etc gets elected, our future is much bleaker than it is now because the liberal socialist values are not tradiational American values.

        So I suggest you begin to pay attention to the crap a large percent of voters base their votes on because you are in a small minority that pay attention to facts. And that small minority do not determine elections.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 12:26 am

        It is my understanding from the polls that voters have close to entirely lost interest in the Trump/Russia collusion nonsense.

        The reason for following the law. The reasons for investigating and prosecuting the pollitical corruption are not to influence future votes. They are to influence future DOJ/FBI/CIA/…. staff.

        Queries of voters to determine why they voted as they did produce disturbing assertions.

        But voters tend to get things right on the whole more than wrong.

        You are correct that voters concerned about facts are the minority.

        But the loons on the left and the right tend to cancel each other out.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:10 pm

        Priscilla;

        I do not actually think giving congress and/or the public everything on this would be on net damaging to Trump. That includes Grand Jury material.

        That is not the criteria. We do not follow the law or not on a case by case basis, based on who the winners and losers are.

        We should scrupulously follow the law regarding THIS investigation, report, etc. because whatever we allow now, will become the norm. It is FUTURE targets that will be harmed when the DOJ gets used to spread dirt about those they investigated but could not prosecute.

        DOJ is not investigative journalists. Their role is to investigate and prosecute crimes.
        Not dig up dirt on people we do not like.

        As Trey Gowdy has said repeately. Prosecutors speak through prosecutions. PERIOD.
        We are not entitled to know what they found that did not reach the level necescary to prosecute. Not about Trump, not about anyone.

        If Trump or each of the individuals involved in this wishes to allow the release of materials related to them – that is lawful. Trump has publicly stated that he will Trust Bar to determine what is released. Barr has taken that as a directive from Trump that he has carte blanche with respect to Trump. But Trump is not the only party in this.

        So follow the rules – even if that takes time, and even if we do not find out any more – though I highly doubt that.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:19 pm

        “It would leak immediately”

        Nothing is going to leak that has not already.
        There have been myriads of rumours from the start of this to the end.
        Those rumours are not sourced by clods with tinfoil on their head.
        They come from purportedly “credible sources” – from current and former govenrment agents.
        Who should know what they are talking about.
        Given that nearly all those rumours have proven FALSE – they were either lying or idiots.

        I doubt there is a single fact in the Mueller report that we have not already heard over and over. Everything has already been leaked by someone.

        I really do not care about leaks – beyond the fact that people who leaked correct information from a grand jury or from a prosecution or classified information should be investigated and prosecuted. Unfortunately lying about grand jury information is not a crime. But the press should learn that when they are getting leaks from insiders on criminal investigations that either those leaking are CRIMINALS or LIARS.

        To the greatest extent possible I support increasing the information that govenrment makes public. But material from criminal investigations will always be protected and leaking it should always be prosecuted.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:21 pm

        Congress does not command Barr.

        And if anyone who CAN do so directs Barr to violate the law, he must resign.

        Not this #resist garbage.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 4:38 am

        After reading carefully some of the stories related to the claim that Barr misrepresented Mueller’s findings, I came up with several additonal facts.

        Every page of the Mueller report provided to Barr is marked as potentially containing GJ material. The decision to mark the pages was made by the SC.

        Barr has direct Mueller to redact the GJ material. I do not know whether Barr will redact it further – his short timeline does not likely leave room for that.
        But the redaction of GJ material is being done by Muellers team not Barr.

        The “leak” to the NYT claiming that the Barr Memo is misrepresentative is NOT from the lawyers on Mueller’s team. Purportedly that is noted in the NYT article. it is likely from investigators or support staff.

      • April 6, 2019 8:22 am

        “This committee would then be the first to receive any information obtained concerning investigations of any house rep., senator or President, with redaction’s, recommendations, etc coming from that group who has the expertise to determine what should happen without politics coming into play. I don’t ever want to see another Mueller type investigation nor the resulting comments based on unsubstantiated innuendo and rumors that ends up dividing this country ”

        Ron, this would be the exact right way to deal with a report that has generated intense national interest, dividing the country into two politically warring clamps, with some on both sides threatening an outright civil war,if they do not get their way.

        Rumor and innuendo are the currency of the extreme left. This article in the Washington Examiner indicates how Trump and his legal team worked cooperatively with the Mueller investigation all along, even while CNN and MSNBC were squawking about a “slow-motion Saturday night massacre
        https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/columnists/byron-york-from-former-trump-lawyer-candid-talk-about-mueller-manafort-sessions-rosenstein-collusion-tweets-privilege-and-the-press?utm_source=WEX_News%20Brief_04/03/2019&utm_medium=email&utm_camp

        I don’t know that those on the far left ~ or even the far right~ would ever accept the findings of any committee, bipartisan or not. But it might reveal whether or not “bipartisanship” even exists in our current federal government.

        Decentralizing federal power, and giving it back to the states, is the way to go, I think. Maybe create committees of governors to review these hot-button investigations…..

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 3:19 pm

        Quit fighting over the report.

        The fixation on the report itself is stupid

        No I do NOT like Ron’s “idea”. Everything that sounds good is not.

        There is a trivial way to address this that can be done without violating or changing law.

        Have Mueller testify. It is that simple. It is HIS job to figure out what he is permitted to reveal and what he may not.

        If you want – add Rosenstein and Barr to the list.

        The goal here was to determine if their was collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. We do not need to fight over the words on a 400 page report.
        Barr has told us what Mueller found – nothing.
        If some of us are unwilling to trust Barr – and while I am angered at the insults being tossed, I can certainly agree that when the DOJ/FBI where controlled by the left they were not trustworthy, then call Mueller to testify. If he confirms Barr’s summary – this is DEAD.
        If not, then the house can start investigating the Trump DOJ.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 5, 2019 12:28 am

      Bill Clinton is a perjuror, an actual obstructor of justice, an actual sexual harrasor, and probably a sexual preditor. There is a credible allegation made by a specific named person who came forward willingly.

      What we have regarding Trump are lots of crude locker room bragging. Few of those in my high school actually performed the sexual exploits they claimed. Trump exagerates, embelishes – even lies – you have said so yourself. Why is the only thing trump has said that you wish to take absolutely litterally the one thing that is near certain to be exageration ?

      Do I think Trump’s relationship to women is good – not a chance.
      But we have no actual evidence that his conduct rises to that of even Biden – which is low on the egregiousness scale.

      Biden claims his conduct is not sexual. Unless it is consensual, it is still work. Though to the female Secret Service agents that had to deal with constant “skinny dipping”, I think it was sexual. Sarah Carter says is physical contact with her was consensual. Whatever my doubts, She is the final authority on that. Lucy Flores says his conduct was NOT consensual. And there is lots of video of many other women and girls. It was not all or mostly consensual.

      Does Trump’s relations with women trouble me ? Yes, but he is not, Biden or Franken (though close), or LBJ, Kennedy, FDR, Harding, or Clinton – pretty much defining the extreme end of the scale.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 5, 2019 12:45 am

      “I have no doubt that it can be argued that the Barr summary was technically true. That does not mean it was not deceptive and very incomplete.”

      Given the allegation “technically true” is the same as TRUE.
      Either there is evidence the Trump campaign colluded or there is not.
      Barr stated there is not. If he is lying about that, that is a huge deal. It is likely a big enough deal to send him to jail. If he is not – this is over.
      Worse still – it is those shouting Russia, Russia, Russia, Collusion, Collusion Collusion who are actual liars.

      I have little doubt that The Mueller Report will have lots of negative anti-Trump spin.
      But that is not the same as evidence.
      Mueller looked not merely under every rock and stone – but every grain of sand.
      He telegraphed extremely clearly by the great lengths he went to to find something, there he bought these claims fully. In the end he failed.

      To the extent that it is possible to prove a negative – Mueller has done so.

      Do I think he is happy about that ? No !

      I think the nonsense Mueller wrote about not exonerating is allowing his own anger particularly at the way Trump has berated him to bleed into his report.

      But Mueller’s anger – is not evidence. Mueller has not only not found evidence that the Trump campaign did collude, he has examined so much information – The whitehouse alone provided Mueller with 1.2M documents. I beleive n equal amount came from the Transition group, Mueller got all the emails of absolutely everybody.

      He likely know almost every word everyone said or wrote, he likely knows where all of them were ever day of the campaign, he likely has ever phone call they made.

      He has enough information that the absence of evidence IS evidence of absence.

      I have never beleived there was collusion – because colluding with the Russians is a bran dead stupid move that makes no sense. It is not politically wise, it is not economically wise, it has no upside. Nor is it possible to keep such a secret.

      BUT, I have zero doubt that if Trump had actually colluded with Russia – Mueller would have found it, and in fact would have found it very quickly.

      Barr’s summary is correct.

      Barr is in the process of providing you more, as much as the law allows, probably more than the law allows.

      Will some of it be embarrassing for Trump or others – sure.
      But there is no hidden collusion.
      This is well past a dead issue.
      It has been from the first day Clinton foist the Steele Dossier on the FBI and the FBI did not bother to verify any of it before using it.

      There was a crime here – but not by the Trump campaign.

      There is right now at this very moment more evidence of potentially criminal conduct on the part of Joe Biden in Ukraine than there is about anyone in Trump’s campaign.

      There is no question about the facts. The only question is why Biden acted in a way that makes no sense. Why VP Biden engaged in “obstruction of justice” in the Ukraine.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 5, 2019 12:55 am

      Just a few days ago, you told me that you never beleived any of this Russia Collusion nonsense.

      Yet here you are backpedaling.

      So let me repeat – if you accuse someone else – like Trump of lying FALSELY,
      If you accuse them of immoral, or illegal acts FALSELY,
      The person who is immoral is YOU.

      Are we going to continue down this path some more ? Are you going to double down on garbage ?

      BTW though the Barr Summary was required by the SC law, in all other criminal investigations, the Barr summary would be MISCONDUCT.

      Prosecutors speak in court, they does so by prosecuting.
      That is ALL. They are not ethically (and often legally) permitted to defame those they investigate, if they are unwilling to prosecute.

      Regardless, I expect nearly all of the Mueller report will get out. I also expect that nearly all of the stuff that republcans want – such as congressional testimony, the FISA warrant application, and much more will also get out.

      Trump may suffer some emabarrasment. But the actual CRIME was the ACTS of the Obama administration. Those must be investigated, and prosecuted.

      What occured in since 2015 must never happen again.
      Not to republicans not to anyone.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 5, 2019 12:59 am

      Monica’s dress is not some embarrassing fact, it is proof of:
      Multiple perjuries,
      Suborning perjury
      and obstruction of justice.

      The Mueller report completely unredacted with all grand jury material tied in a bow will NOT come close.

      wishful thinking is not a substitute for facts.

      You have not merely defamed Trump, but the entire Trump campaign – you have lied about them. You have also lied about and to those who voted for Trump.

      There is no moral equivalence here.

      When you make false accusations the moral stain falls on YOU.

  66. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    April 4, 2019 5:08 pm

    16 women and donald trump

    Let the denials begin. All 16 women are lying right? Where have we heard this one before? The contemptible and completely bullshit denials from the same people who have no proof that bill clinton is a sexual predator but are certain that he is (as am I). Clinton at least was not publically proud of it.

    There is no way any intelligent person can write these women off as all lying. trump is an unacceptable sexual predator and he is proud of it, as we know. this explains a great part of the resistance. I do not know how his supporters are able to rationalize their lack of an appropriate human reaction to trumps words and actions.

    Unless much much more comes to light on Biden, a very very different in character set of behaviours then any comparison between biden and trump in this regard is disgusting and idiotic, again, contemptible.

    This will come back in campaign 2020 and I certainly hope that it is taken more seriously this time.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 5, 2019 3:36 am

      Are you actually claiming this even comes CLOSE to Clinton ?

      Please, Juanita Broaddrick accused Clinton of raping her in 1978
      Leslie Millwee accused Clinton of sexually assaulting her repeatedly over the course of many months in 1980; Including ejaculating on her.
      Paula Jones accused Clinton of exposing himself to her in 1991 as well as sexually harassing her;
      Kathleen Willey accused Clinton of groping her without her consent in 1993.
      Even Lewinsky eventually came to realize that Clinton’s conduct with her was wrong.

      Subsequently there have been many other allegations – though these are the ones the public fixated on. Clinton paid Paula Jones 850,000 in damages, Clinton has subsequently settled a number of other claims of sexual harrassment.

      When Clinton flies his plain is refered to as “Air F*** One”.

      Bill Clinton flew on Epstein’s private Boeing 727 — known as the “Lolita Express” — 26 times.

      On some of these flights, Clinton was accompanied by “a woman whom federal prosecutors suspect of procuring underage sex victims for Mr. Epstein.”

      On at least five of these flights, Clinton declined to have Secret Service protection.

      “Eileen Wellstone, 19-year-old English woman, said Clinton sexually assaulted her after she met him at a pub near the Oxford where the future President was a student in 1969.

      “a 22-year-old woman told campus police at Yale University that she was sexually assaulted by Clinton, a law student at the college. No charges were filed, but retired campus policemen contacted by Capitol Hill Blue confirmed the incident. The woman, tracked down by Capitol Hill Blue last week, confirmed the incident, but declined to discuss it further and would not give permission to use her name.”

      A female student at the University of Arkansas complained that then-law school instructor Bill Clinton tried to prevent her from leaving his office during a conference. She said he groped her and forced his hand inside her blouse. She complained to her faculty advisor who confronted Clinton, but Clinton claimed the student ”came on” to him. The student left the school shortly after the incident. Reached at her home in Texas, the former student confirmed the incident, but declined to go on the record with her account. Several former students at the University have confirmed the incident in confidential interviews and said there were other reports of Clinton attempting to force himself on female students.”

      A young woman lawyer in Little Rock claimed that she was accosted by Clinton while he was attorney general and that when she recoiled he forced himself on her, biting and bruising her. Deeply affected by the assault, the woman decided to keep it all quiet for the sake of her own hard-won career and that of her husband. When the husband later saw Clinton at the 1980 Democratic Convention, he delivered a warning. ‘If you ever approach her,’ he told the governor, ‘I’ll kill you.’ Not even seeing fit to deny the incident, Bill Clinton sheepishly apologized and duly promised never to bother her again.”

      Moffet has stated for the record that “she met Gov. Clinton at a political fundraiser and was invited to his hotel room. ‘When I went in, he was sitting on a couch, wearing only an undershirt. He pointed at his penis and told me to suck it. I told him I didn’t even do that for my boyfriend and he got mad, grabbed my head and shoved it into his lap. I pulled away from him and ran out of the room.’”

      Former Miss America Ward initially accused Clinton of forcible rape, but recanted in 1998 with an apology to Hillary for what she said was a consensual relationship.

      The former Miss Arkansas Perdue has told the press that she while her sexual relationship with Clinton was consensual, “in 1992 she was visited by a Democratic Party staffer [who made it clear to her that they] ‘knew that I went jogging by myself and he couldn’t guarantee what would happen to my pretty little legs.'”

      political fundraiser James alleged that Clinton “pinned [her] against a wall and stuck his hands up her dress. She screamed so loud that the Arkansas State Police knocked on the hotel door and asked if everything was okay. When she told her Democratic fundraising boss about the incident, he told her to ‘keep your mouth shut.'”

      Zercher, then a female stewardess on Air Force One, “complained that Clinton ‘sexually molested” and ‘cornered” her on [a] flight. Per Patterson, the woman only “wanted an apology.'”

  67. Jay permalink
    April 4, 2019 7:59 pm

    BREAKING NEWS:

    Trump to announce another national emergency this weekend!

    Millions more are at danger from cancer from wind turbine noise, the President asserted after a new report stated that the number of utility-scale turbines in the United States has surpassed 52,000.

    He will be asking for $8 billion emergency funding to immediately start replacing them with coal-burning plants in states where coal sales have been plummeting.

    (Belated April Fool’s Day 🙃)

  68. dduck12 permalink
    April 4, 2019 9:36 pm

    Oh no, now we will get 10,000 words on wind turbine minutiae to further glut the thread.
    Oh, and 10,000 more because I didn’t make a direct attack (so cowardly). Well here it is from dduck12 to dhlli, a direct attack, so can the second 10,000

    • dhlii permalink
      April 5, 2019 6:17 am

      “Oh no, now we will get 10,000 words on wind turbine minutiae to further glut the thread.
      Oh, and 10,000 more because I didn’t make a direct attack (so cowardly). Well here it is from dduck12 to dhlli, a direct attack, so can the second 10,000”

      What are you even talking about ?

      Do you have nothing more substantive to complain about that the size of my posts ?

      • Jay permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:47 pm

        Observation:

        The size of your posts are inversely proportionate to the size of your….

        Humm..
        I’ll leave that open ended…

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 12:12 am

        “Observation:

        The size of your posts are inversely proportionate to the size of your….

        Humm..
        I’ll leave that open ended…”

        Right, jump deep into the gutter then pretend you did not.

        Is this relevant in anyway ? Is there anyway that this is not a stupid and falacious tactic ?

        Weren’t you opposed to it when Trump and Cruz got into it ?

        I do not go arround comparing my “hand size” to others.
        I am happy with my “hand size”,

      • April 5, 2019 4:02 pm

        LMAO

  69. Jay permalink
    April 4, 2019 9:58 pm

    What sensible patriotic talented conservatives think of Trump:

    • dhlii permalink
      April 5, 2019 6:15 am

      Still playing this nonsensical game ?

      Just because I like Brad Thor’s books does not mean that I or anyone else should deify his political progonstications.
      I think Meryl Streep is one of the best actresses ever, I do not pay much attention to her politically.

      Grow up Jay. Make your own arguments, in your own words.

      I have no doubt what those will be – but atleast they will be authentic.

      Trump is an asshole. There is a whole army of them out they – left, right, assholes everywhere.

      Trump did not win 2016 by being an asshole. He won because alot of assholes targeted him.

      In Wisconsin a conservative republican appears to have won an upset seat on the WI SCOTUS. He was not supposed to have been on the radar, He was supposed to have lost by near double digits, He was outspent 14:1. He was attacked as being a bigot, anti LGBTQ,

      The tactic appears to have backfired – as it did for Clinton in 2016, drawing conservative voters out.

      Today the Southern Poverty Law Center – the organization that has been our racial conscience for decades, that tells us all what hate purportedly is, is being investigated for —– Racism. Aparently you can not get more than a meanial job at SPLC unless you are white.

      Oh, and the number of women accusing Biden of inappropriate conduct is now up to 7.
      All democrats. In one instance the woman he made inappropriate contact with was a rape victim.

      But then lefties are clueless.
      I have some experience dealing with Rape victims. It is a mine field. It is near impossible to tell what will trigger them.
      Wise people do not make assumptions about rape victims.

      “We’ve got to talk about this. Consent requires affirmative consent! . . . If you can’t get her to say ‘yes’ because she wants to, you ain’t much.”
      Joe Biden

  70. dhlii permalink
    April 5, 2019 6:28 am

  71. Jay permalink
    April 5, 2019 10:04 am

    Starting his day with another lie:

    It’s not a new wall. It’s a replacement on an existing section, planned to be renovated years ago.

    But wait for the stubborn idiot’s (guess who I mean) rationalizing reply: “no, it’s NEWER than the OLDER section.”

    • dhlii permalink
      April 5, 2019 3:22 pm

      Again THIS ? is your idea of a “lie” ?

      Are you really this petty and desparate ?

      • Jay permalink
        April 5, 2019 3:55 pm

        How would you describe it?

        Just another mistake like forgetting his father was born in the Bronx?

        If you as landlord promised tenets to air condition the building with new equipment, and then installed plug in floor fans in the apartments, you’d dismiss their complaints that you were untruthful as petty and desperate too, right. (Jeez, I hope I haven’t planted an idea in your mind)

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 12:14 am

        “How would you describe it?”

        Meaningless.

        My Great Grandfather claimed we were italian.
        I like Italy. There is not any italian in our family Tree.
        Further he knew better – his father’s father got off the boat from Dublin.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 12:19 am

        “If you as landlord promised tenets to air condition the building with new equipment, and then installed plug in floor fans in the apartments, you’d dismiss their complaints that you were untruthful as petty and desperate too, right. (Jeez, I hope I haven’t planted an idea in your mind)”

        Where do you get this nonsense ?

        As a landlord the ONLY binding commitment between my tenants and me is the LEASE, that is a CONTRACT.

        If my lease includes AC – then I MUST by law provide AC – not fans.

        If I stop by and tell tennants I am planning to add AC in the future, and I never do, or I provide them with fans – that is NOT a lie.
        All errors, miscommunications, unmet expectations are NOT lies.

        They say things CONSTANTLY they do not follow through on.
        I say things that do not work out as planned.

        If I tell a tennant I plan to come by on Saturday to fix a window they broke, and I do not get there until Sunday is that a “broken promise” ? Did I “lie” ?

      • Jay permalink
        April 5, 2019 9:36 pm

        Are you really this block-headedly stubborn? Obviously yes.

        He lied abou this section of renovated wall being part of HIS NEW WALL.
        And had a plaque posted on it stating the same phony claim.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 1:19 am

        “Are you really this block-headedly stubborn? Obviously yes.

        He lied abou this section of renovated wall being part of HIS NEW WALL.
        And had a plaque posted on it stating the same phony claim.”

        I do not consider imprecision in remarks lying.

        You used landlord tenant relations as an example.

        If I tell a tenant I am coming by on Monday to fix a leaky toilet and I arrive and find a busted heater and chose to fix that instead – I did not lie.

        If I describe something that is brand new as new, even though it is replacing something that is older – that is not a lie.

        I do not expect the same precision in details from a political speach as I do from those crafting laws, or testifying under oath.

        I do not call people liars for trivial definitional disagreements.

        You are just reinforcing my argument that you can not distinguish between error and evil.

        I try pretty hard when posting here to be accurate and precise. But nearly all the time – even though I am much more accurate and precise than most of you, my remarks do not address every exception every contingency.

        As an example I have likely on several occasions said

        “You may not initiate force against another”

        That is WRONG. There are rare instances in which you may. Most government action falls under that.
        The more accurate statement is “You may not initiate force against another without justification”

        Even that is not perfectly precise. But it is not ordinarily necescary to address every possible contingency.

        My point is that NONE of us say precisely what we mean, Not of us ever speak the truth if what each of us says must be completely accurate and fully precise.

        We do not typically accuse people of lying for imprecision, even error.

        Those of us that do are immoral.

  72. dhlii permalink
    April 5, 2019 4:26 pm

    According to Trump’s lawyer Dowd, the relations between the SC and Trump’s lawyers were always cordial.

    That everyone cooperated with each other.

    That Mueller’s office “tipped off” Trump’s lawyers to false stories.

    That Mueller fully understood that Trump had to politically tee off on him,
    and that he was a big boy and could take it, and that when Mueller’s office was concerned that Trump’s remarks would encourage witnesses to refuse to cooperate, Trump responded to their concerns by publicly demanding that everyone cooperate.

    Though Dowd’s acount is the most expansive, it is fully consistent with what we know from other sources.

    Trump talked about red lines regarding the SC, but he never attempted to enforced any.

    We debated here the legality of Mueller’s confiscation of the transistion records.
    There was no legal challenge to that.
    There was no legal challenge from trump to ANYTHING.
    In contrast to clinton who fought EVERYTHING tooth and nail.

    Millions of documents – many of which were subject to executive priviledge were provided to Mueller. The only parties to go to court to block any aspect of the Mueller investigation were Manafort and the Russians.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6890879/Muellers-office-tip-Trumps-lawyer-incorrect-press-reports-Russia-investigation.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490

  73. Jay permalink
    April 5, 2019 8:36 pm

    Yes, it’s true that SOME of the illegals intercepted are ‘animals’ as Trump describes.
    But the majority are desperate people, longing for a better, safer life for them and their children.
    Agreed?

    • Jay permalink
      April 5, 2019 9:01 pm

      Who here agrees this kind of rhetoric from a President Of The U.S. is unacceptable?

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 1:04 am

        Here is the actual Trump quote in context.

        Who here beleives that rhetoric from a President Of The U.S. about people ICE is deporting from prisons and jails is unacceptable?

    • April 5, 2019 9:04 pm

      So 76,000 for one month equates to slightly more than 900,000 caught, screened for health issues and basically released. That does not count those that make it into the country witnout detection. So basically 1 million a year.

      AP report, not Fox, Huff Post, NYTimes or any other ragsheet with a political agenda.
      https://www.voanews.com/a/record-breaking-family-migration-overwhelming-border-agency/4815283.html

      Who is going to tell me what we are doing other than in CA with Pelosi’s walls is working? If you try, dont try to bull shit a bull shitter. Give facts that support the current laws and processes.

      If you cant, then once again all ports of entry need to be opened, immigrants quarenteed for health scrdenings, vacinnated and released to civic organizations, churches or relatives. This needs to continue until congress gets off its dead ass and acts!

      • Jay permalink
        April 5, 2019 9:28 pm

        You didn’t answer the stated question, but sidestepped to your pet peeve, Ron.
        Is that kind of rhetoric from a US President acceptable or not?

        Get rid of this Hitleresque fool first then we can confront the immigration issues with a semblance of bi-partisan coherence.

      • April 6, 2019 12:04 am

        I guess you did not read my former comment concerning Trump. I stated I will debate policies, but I would not comment on personal behavior. We have beat that horse to death 3 times.

        I stand by that comment!

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 1:08 am

        Jay;

        I provided Trump’s remarks IN CONTEXT.

        Do you have a problem with Trump calling MS-13 members animals ?
        Or others that ICE removes from state local and federal jails for violent crimes ?

        That is the context.

        Misrepresenting the context, is deceptive, it is a form of LYING.

      • April 6, 2019 8:03 am

        Ron, I disagree that we have beat that horse 3 times.

        We have beat that horse 100 times. The horse was dead after the first 3 beatings, but it goes on anyway…..

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 3:12 pm

        We have not beaten the horse at all.

        You, and I and Ron – even Trump discuss immigration and how to deal with it.

        Most everyone else just lobs grenades and insults and nonsense that even they do not really beleive.

        I beleive that CBP has approximately 3,500 beds for “families” caught at the border.

        The Flores consent decree (not actually law, but do not try not following it) requires the release of illegals when there are no beds available. The law allows the quick (30days) deportation of those caught within 100miles of the border.
        So of the 76,000 caught each month Trump can deport 3,500 easily. All the rest are essentially here for 18months to several years and require ICE to spend enormous amounts of effort to track and deport them.

        The resources, bed’s medical care, etc. available to CBP are determined by congress.
        D’s not merely tanked wall funding, but they cut resources.

        They are making the enforcement of existing laws harder.

        Most are NOT beating a dead horse. They are just lobbing insults and occasionally ill conceived platitudes.

        They are unwilling to make diffcult decisions, but happy to insult those who are.

        Unlike myriads of other issues the left wants to make a crisis government must F’up in some ideological ignorant way, this actually is a situation that requires government to act.

        What we have is already F’d up. We can not make it perfect, but we can make it less F’d up.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 6, 2019 9:21 am

        “We have beat that horse 100 times. The horse was dead after the first 3 beatings, but it goes on anyway…..”

        If trump were exactly trump only he was a very liberal democrat you would not be complaining, in fact you would be participating with enthusiasm.

        Unfortunately, trump is not a dead horse, but a live president and almost every day his words and actions embarrass any decent, intelligent and/or sensible citizen.

        So, cry me a river…

      • April 6, 2019 11:10 am

        Roby, I have commented here for a few years. Please tell me where I have constantly attacked Clinton, Obama or any other politician for personal behaviors like others here waste time commenting on Trump.

        I called Clinton a bitch. I still think she is a bitch. But I have never posted daily messages about her being a bitch.

        I dont remember commenting about Obama’s personal behaviors. The closest was him not being as American due to being an immigrant from Indonesia compared to an American raised dreamer.

        I have said many times in the past what I thought of Trumps behavior. How many times does someone have to say it until others understand? I think I may have said it more than 25 times. I know its more than 10.

        So if anyone does not know my positions on Trumps personal behaviors, then they are mentally incapable of understanding.

        I knew what Jay thought about Trump by about February, 2017. So I dont need multiple daily reminders. I just delete them.

        And I refuse to waste time commenting, because anyone who does not know my thoughts now will be incapable of understanding in the future.

        “So, cry me a river…” Tell this to Jay as he is the one trolling twitter for anti trump comments, not me.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 6, 2019 11:20 am

        For you Ron I feel sincere sympathy. I have not stated that you have done those things adn I understand your position on trump perfectly. That should be clear.

        You may feel that TNM has its flavor because of Jay. For me America has its flavor at present because of trump and TNM has its flavor mostly because of trump and dave.

        Its a chicken and egg problem, do dave and priscilla cheering trump and attacking trumps critics lead to Jay and dduck and myself, or visa versa, does our criticism of trump lead to dave and priscilla?
        Whichever it is, the process is not stoppable. It won’t even stop after trump is gone, it will just find new forms.
        A delete function is very handy for using TNM. I wish there was a good delete function for the reality of American politics.

      • April 6, 2019 12:16 pm

        Roby,
        First TNM. I do think TNM gets much of its flavor from Jay, not because of the recipes he posts, but because he finds some twit from some twit that posted something negative about Trump, and then that sets Dave off because that is what the extremes on the left and right want. Divide and conquer!

        As for Dave, there is much he says that has truth and logic. Its just getting through the long comments to find what is important and in some cases, delete is much easier. But one thing he has said is he did not vote for Trump and he has said many times he may not vote for him in the future. That to me is not an endorsement of the man, but he may well endorse the policies.

        As for dduck and you, along with Jay, I understand the frustration with having a minority president that defeated someone that took the majority of the votes and that is hard to get over. Hell it took the democrats until Obama was elected to get over 43 getting elected. And then add to that someone like Trump and the shock of that happening is incomprehensible. Do anything in the future to insure that never happens again.

        As for the GOP, Mitch McConnell screwed up a lot by Blocking whatever he could block to “make Obama a one term president” and Reid screwed it up even more by going nuclear.

        I have tries many times to get comments going about immigration, entitlements and other things. I have even changed my position about securing the border and instead of a debate, I am accused of anger and not being able to see the big picture. So instead of a discussion on policies, I am accused of IDS (immigration derangement syndrome). I posted comments about my position on release of mueller information and how this process needs to be changed, and Dave and Priscilla were the only ones to comment. Others just want the mess we have so they can argue over if all the information is being released or not.

        I just had a a life long friend come for a visit. He had been “moderate left” most of the time I have known him. This past visit when politics came up, it sounded like I had the TV on and Rachel Maddow or Chris Mathews was talking. There was no “debating” issues because everything came back to “Trump behavior”. Or Trump administration hiding something. Or Trump is a crook.

        But as I said, we have beat a dead horse to death many times, so when someone has an issue to debate, I’m in. If its about “personal” Trump, I’m out.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 6, 2019 12:55 pm

        It would be my opinion that you are the one poster here who everyone else likes and respects, whether they are left or right.

        But, like my wife, you take everything personally, even when its not even directed at you.

        Your diagnosis of why we are permanently upset about trump, simply he is a minority president, amazes me. That really is not it. Could you really believe that is the reason? Your own words on trump show that you get it about his character and the nature of many of his actions, so why you would think we are just still put out by the election results is beyond me.

        Dave in my world does not work with facts and logic most of the time, unless one means cherry picked facts often from ridiculous sources and logic that is only ever used to decisively rule out other valid facts or points of view. There are times when he is stating actual facts and using them in a reasonable way, and thee are times when he is not locked in argument mode where he says interesting things, but there are so many times when he is simply spinning the yarn that he wants to believe based on a mixture of truths, half truths, and obvious lies that I do not consider him to be a useful source of facts reason or logic, even if one Does use a filter to remove the extraneous nonsense. . Plus he is actually emotional as hell, which is why he stays up half the night writing denunciations.

        What it comes down to is that we all have our ideological beliefs and those strongly determine which posters drive us crazy. JB, Dave, Priscilla, have all got the ability to drive me crazy. Jay drives you crazy. Just imagine how you would enjoy daves style if he were a lefty. I don’t even read his stuff now, but he all the same is determining the flavor of TNM; due to his noisy style its guaranteed that he will always be the center of attention, he has honed the persona of obnoxious know it all loudmouth to an art. .

        Now, say what you might about Jay, and I can say what I might about Dave, but if they both left there would be about 20 comments after Ricks posts and then the conversation would likely die out. They generate a lot of irate reaction and heat.

        Regarding your attempts to have more meaningful conversations about substance I consider myself to be a person who is interested in facts, but I do not engage much in debates on situations that are actually enormously complex, such as climate or economics. What would be the point? Am I going to prove anything to anybody? Have an impact on events?

        I am not going to pretend to have enough knowledge on such things to be the one to debate them meaningfully, here or anywhere. I am here to vent, to give my opinion, my general views, impressions, fears. Deeper discussions are for specialists, not blogs in my opinion.

        I consider you to be someone who has actual deep professional experience on health care finance, I am interested when you talk about it. The rest of us here have no specific expertise in any of the political subjects. We have opinions, that is all. Dave is a phony expert on almost everything. I am not interested in debating pretend experts, especially ones who are always 100% certain that they are right. I respect people who know how much they don’t know and are modest when they do know something.

      • April 6, 2019 4:17 pm

        Roby “But, like my wife, you take everything personally, even when its not even directed at you.”

        I dont agree 100% with this. BUT!!! I will agree that could be a perception.

        I do not read comments on Word Press. Everything I read is through email. When I reply, I click the reply on email, it links to Word Press comment and always it says, “Reply to Xxx”, the person who made the comment popping up in email. And when I tested this using a different “name” for word press and a different email, it always said in the email at the top of the comment, “In reply To XXX” no matter who made the original comment or how many comments on that thread had been made.

        So, when I make a comment, Dave replies 5 times, Priscilla replies and then someone else replies to them, but the email says “Vermentadowhatawanta replid to Ron P”, I make the decision Roby is commenting on what I said, not on what Dave or Priscilla said. I am making the decision that everyone knows how to comment and get it to the proper person they are responding to.

        So now I wont make that assumption. Before commenting on some issues, I will ask ” who is this in response to” when that cant be identified.

        And yes, when Jay says something like ” your anger with….. ” in a statement, I assume I can take that personally.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 8:57 pm

        Ron.

        I work much as you do.

        But I am less interested in the WHO, than what is said.

        On occasion I have been confused about who said something.

        A great deal of what I do not like about dragging the debate into the personal realm rather than about issues is that it requires me to be more cognizant of the who than the what.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 6:25 pm

        Clearly we do not see the world the same.

        “you take everything personally, even when its not even directed at you.”

        That statement from you towards Ron is the most unaware statement I think I have ever read on TNM.

        Ron is close to the least likely person here to take anything personally.
        While you are possibly the most likely to do so.

        As I said in a prior post, Ron and I can argue forcefully about some issue of policy, I can call his POSITION stupid (usually explaining why) and even if Ron does not agree he rarely takes it personally.

        You are completely unable to distinguish between someone disagreeing with you and someone insulting you, while at the same time being almost completely oblivious of the fact that your own posts are not arguments, they are just fallacies – and a large portion of those are insults.

        Though there are others here who are worse, you not merely insult the person you are arguing with or about, but anyone who does not immediately join you in condemning them.

        You spew hatred towards half the country and are surprised when they hate you back.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 6:33 pm

        You constantly claim not to be on the left – but here you are dividing TNM into the people who get your goat – all by your defintion on the right.

        Further though you pay lips service to posting a criticism about “style” what you are really doing is criticising people.

        It should not be about WHO drives you crazy, but WHAT.

        And WHAT drives you crazy is anyone who does not uncritically accept what you say.

        You are “triggered” by that WHAT, but you respond by attacking the WHO.

        I do not think you have the slightest interest in any serious discussion of issues, or policies.
        You have made it crystal clear that you absolutely hate “ideology” and have no interest in philosophy. Those are our moral foundations. Right and wrong are determined by our principles. Those things you have no interest in.

        You can not judge right and wrong, without the principles that you claim little interest in,
        Yet you judge right and wrong all the time.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 6:37 pm

        This is not about Jay vs Dave vs. Robby vs Ron.

        It is supposed to be about ideas,

        You chose to make it into passing moral judgement on others, and now you are not happy because I am making moral judgments about you.

        You flip all discussion away from issues and to people, specifically to insults of people.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 6:49 pm

        “I consider you to be someone who has actual deep professional experience on health care finance, I am interested when you talk about it. The rest of us here have no specific expertise in any of the political subjects. We have opinions, that is all. Dave is a phony expert on almost everything. I am not interested in debating pretend experts, especially ones who are always 100% certain that they are right. I respect people who know how much they don’t know and are modest when they do know something.”

        What complete and total garbage.

        First lets accept your base claim as true – then there is absolutely no reason for any discussion at all. None of us have actual knowledge about anything – we should all just be modest and shut up.

        Clearly that is not what you actually beleive – but it is what you have just argued.

        No, You do not respect people who know how much they do not know,
        You respect people who do not disagree with you, or who do not point out the freight train sized holes in the rare arguments you make.

        But your base premise only gets worse the more deeply you look.

        It is absolutely completely irrelevant whether we are “experts” or not.

        Nearly everything we discuss here is about govenrment
        FORCE.

        There is no “I am an expert” justification for the use of force.

        My personal opinion on YOUR healthcare is an unwelcome intrusion.
        It is irrelevant whether I am right or wrong, whether I am expert or not.

        When you advocate for govenrment action you are ALWAYS advocating for the intrusion into someone else’s life. It is irrelevant whether you are an expert or parroting experts.
        Again there is no “I am an expert” justification for the use of force against another.

        If I am not permitted to impose my will on you in some subject area – even one in which I am the worlds foremost aknowledged expert, then YOU are not free to do so to me or others,
        not personally, not through government.

        We are ALL always entitled to an oppinion with regard to the use of force against us.
        In nearly all cases we are entitled to have the FINAL oppinion regarding ourselves,
        REGARDLESS of our “expertise”.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 7:02 pm

        Robby;

        You have no interest in debating at all.

        Once again your “phoney expert” response is just misdirection to avoid actually discussing an issue.

        Whether something is true or false is not established by claiming the PERSON arguing it is a “phony expert”.

        That is pretty blatant ad hominem – FALLACY.

        Ad hominem is usally argument in the form of an insult.
        But that is not what it is fallacy.

        It is fallacy because it is sidetracking the argument from the issue, to the person.

        If I am wrong about something – make the argument – facts, logic reason.
        But that is NEVER what you do.
        All your responses are fallacies, and most are ad hominem.

        If you are not interested in debating the issues with “phoney experts” – then go take them up with whoever you consider real experts.

        If you make an assertion HERE, it is going to be responded to by the people HERE.
        You chose the forum you posted in, it is nonsense to then duck the debate that follows.

        You want to vent – fine, but if you are going to vote then you are MORALLY obligated to do more. Voting is more than a right, it is a trust. Your are acting and your act may result in the use of force against others.

        When you care for a child – you have power over them, you control them, and as a result you have a DUTY to them. When you are put into a position of Trust and power over others.
        A guardian, or executor, or a trustee, or a CEO, you have power over others and a DUTY to them. You are obligated to know what the hell you are doing. You are obligated to do more than “have an opinion”. You are free to consult experts if you want, But in the end you must make choices – choices with consequences, consequences for other people. And you do not get to duck responsibility for that. You can not diminish your responsibility by claiming it was just my oppinion or I am no expert.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 7:44 pm

        A large part of what I do that clearly infuriates you – has absolutely nothing to do with subject matter expertise.

        It has to do with actually reading what you say, and responding to the underlying assumptions that you have not even thought about.

        I confront the discrepancy between your emotional intentions and the actual functioning of your claims.

        Often that means taking what you say litterally.
        Usually that means taking it litterally, when that is not what you intended, but when regardless of your intentions, that is how what you say will work.

        Opinions when reflected through votes are acts of force against others.
        That is what you want from your vote – you want your vote to result in your opinion being turned into action – force, against others. But you also want to pretend that because it is merely your opinion you are free from responsibility for the moral consequences.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 8:27 pm

        “Dave in my world”
        We all live in the same world.

        “does not work with facts and logic most of the time, unless one means cherry picked facts often from ridiculous sources”

        You are making a moral claim as well as a factual claim. I doubt you recognize that.
        But you are inherently claiming that my arguments are deliberately deceptive.
        In more plain terms you are claiming that I am lying.

        When you make a moral claim against another – if you are not proveably right, the moral failure is yours.

        Claiming that someone else is wrong incorrectly is just error, Claiming someone else is lying is more than error if you are wrong, it is immoral.

        “and logic that is only ever used to decisively rule out other valid facts or points of view.”

        Everything can not be addressed with logic. But logic like mathematics produces absolute results where it applies.

        If logic rules something out decisively – it is ruled out. There is not another point of view.
        The argument you are making is the core of postmodernism. The philosophy of the extreme left. You may have no interest in philosophy – but you have been heavily influenced by an extreme and self contradictory philosophy.

        Facts are facts, there is no equivalence moral or otherwise with points of view or opinions.
        An opinion or point of view that is not consistent with the facts is FALSE.

        There is no getting around that.

        If the premises of an argument are correct and the argument itself is logically valid then the results are valid. There is no short cut around that – alternate worlds where that is not true are not the real world.

        The sun does not revolve around the earth, even if it is your opinion that it does.
        The sun’s orbit does not care about our ideology or opinions.
        Facts do not care about our ideology or opinions.

        Whatever you think “argument mode” is – is irrelevant.

        If a valid argument refutes an assertion – the “mode” of the person offering the argument is irrelevant.

        “Plus he is actually emotional as hell, which is why he stays up half the night writing denunciations.”

        Now presuming that you are omniscient about the emotional state of others.

        That an argument I make is strong or triggers and emotional response in you, does not say anything about my emotional state.

        Strong arguments always appear to those on the wrong side of them to be emotional.

        A common fallacy argued constantly here is that anything outside the middle – whatever that is, is inherently wrong. That on any given issue where the left and the right disagree – the answer must be in the middle.

        That should be an obvious fallacy. Should the germans have only killed half the jews ?

        Was slavery half right ?

        The correct answer to most questions lies on a curve. Sometimes that curve slopes up and the answer is at one extreme, sometimes down and at the other. Sometimes the curve has an appogee somewhere between one side and the others. But of the questions that have answers there is always an optimum and always better answers approaching the optimum and worse going away.

        Questions that do not have answers are NOT the legitimate domain for government.

        “Regarding your attempts to have more meaningful conversations about substance I consider myself to be a person who is interested in facts, but I do not engage much in debates on situations that are actually enormously complex, such as climate or economics. What would be the point? Am I going to prove anything to anybody? Have an impact on events?”

        The point ? You may not be an expert in economics, but everything about it directly effects you personally. Even purportedly uneconomic choices, like your relations with your children or spouse, romantic dinners, or catch with your son, require than the economic aspects of your life are not dysfunctional.

        You need not be expert in those things that directly impact your own life to have more than an opinion, but the right to as much personal control as is possible – even if you make bad choices.

        Further so long as the issue is ultimately about the use of force against others, the “experts” have no voice any more determination than your own.
        Purported expertise does not grant you power over the lives of others.

        I would further note that we live in the internet era. Any person of moderate intelligence can know as much about almost any expert relatively quickly if they desire.

        The primary value of modern experts is NOT knowledge – it is experience.

        I know far more about structures and materials and building design than any carpenter,
        But I am ten times as likely to hit my thumb with a hammer.
        That is not for lack of knowledge.

        Regardless, when you vote based on experts – that does not absolve you of moral responsibility for the use of force that you are voting for.

        BTW, there are very few things that I claim to be expert in. Logic being one of those, and I do have both the experience, education, and accomplishments to back that up.
        Though I prefer to avoid appeals to authority – even my own.
        My arguments are valid or invalid based on the arguments, not based on my IQ, or degrees, or professional accomplishments.

        I am not much interested in “experts” pretend or otherwise.
        I am interested in facts, logic, reason.

        I am not abdicating personal responsibility for my decisions.

        You are bizarrely parrotting the losing side of the argument that the reformation was all about.

        Martin Luther’s fundimental argument was that individuals were responsible for themselves.
        That they could not abdicate responsibilty to the church, the pope, the priest.
        Luther made that in the context of faith, but it applies to everything.

        Experts are a source of information. Choices and responsibility for our lives belong to each of us individually. with the rare exception where the use of force is justifed, we can not take that choice or responsibilty from others.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 8:30 pm

        “I respect people who know how much they don’t know and are modest when they do know something.”

        I do not respect people who offer their opinions, are even willing to impose them on others by force, but are unwilling to defend them claiming to defer to experts.

        If you are willing to use force to impose an opinion ANY opinion, then you are morally obligated to defend it. You can not abdicate responsibility for the use of force against others.

        It does nto matter how much you know or do not, so long as you are putting the power of your vote behind the use of force, you are responsible.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 5:30 pm

        It is extremely difficult to shift from factual argument to moral argument without making things personal.

        I have tried doing so, and it can not be done. Nor does it matter because far too many posters falsely conflate factual criticism with personal and moral attacks.

        Regardless, for me the personal element of this is an unfortunate tangent.

        I am not interested in pointing out WHO is to blame. I am trying to focus on WHAT is to blame.

        I am not interested in Jay is worse than Robby, or Dave’s posts are too long.

        It is absolutely trivial to find a place on the internet where there as posters whose conduct is worse than anyone here.

        If I got a kick out of insulting idiots I would not frequent TNM.

        I am interested in what is wrong, not who is wrong.
        Unfortunately it is impossible to call out the problems – particularly in small groups like TNM without clearly identifying the who.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 6:00 pm

        Ron,

        Jay does not “set me off” – atleast not in the sense that it Triggers an emotional response.

        Jay makes pretty much the same post all the time, it is always an appeal to authority.
        It is nearly always from someone who is not an authority on anything,
        It is nearly always a moral claim, and rarely one with the kind of factual support needed for a moral claim.

        I do not care much about Jay’s posts, Jay does not seem to care much about my responses.

        The only time I get “triggered” by Jay is when he devolves from “Trump is evil” to “Trump and anyone who does not condenm Trump in the most forceful terms on demand is evil”

        There is no moral obligation to right all the moral wrongs in the world.

        Any assertion of the form “you are evil, because you have not to my satisfaction condemned this other thing or person that I think is evil” – is itself evil and wrong.

        And it is an evil game near universally played by the LEFT, and a major part of why I consider Jay, DD, and Robby to be on the left.

        It makes a false moral equivalence between advocating for evil, and not advocating against it. Typically compounded with a miss identification of actual evil.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 6:07 pm

        Ron,

        I disagree with you alot – on issues.

        But you make arguments. If you are wrong, you are wrong about facts or logic,

        You are rarely making moral judgements, and when you do you are not wrong about them.

        Sometimes my responses frustrate you. But you do not jump to the conclusion that I have insulted you because I disagree – even if I have noted that some argument you are making is stupid.

        I recently tripped over the quote.

        “The right thinks the left is wrong.
        The left things the right is evil”

        And I think that near perfectly encapsulates what is wrong with the country today.

        AOC actually offered the same thought with
        “it does not matter if you are wrong about the facts, if you are morally right”

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 4:19 pm

        I beleive this is just a meme – not an actual event.

        Though I think it does a pretty good job of encapsulating the divisions in this country right now.

        The point is that you DELIBERATELY misrepresent everything.

        “Make America Great Again” was a brilliant and effective campaign slogan.

        It encapsulated many things, it meant different things to different people.

        To some of us it meant an end to the embarrasing Obama Apology tour.

        Our country might have some introspection it should do regarding our past history.
        but that is OUR business, there is not a nation in the world we owe an apology to.
        Whatever our problems – and they are many, we are the least racist country in the world.

        Yet, even centerist democrats have tried to make MAGA into a symbol of racism.

        And you wonder why an awful lot of americans are REALLY PISSED at you ?

        You insult others ALL THE TIME. You do not bother to make arguments to support your positions. You jump imediately to insult and character assassination of anyone who does nto agree.

        You have just claimed to be happy with Ron, but that Priscilla and I are just psychophant Trump Cheerleaders.

        Clearly you can not read. I am far more critical of Trump particularly on policies than Ron is.

        But I am also completely sick of “the politics of personal distruction”

        And NO ROBBY – Obama was NOT treated this way. Not even close.
        Nor is it about Trump – and you are completely blind to that.

        The political division that is so apparent since Trump’s election occurred before Trump.
        And it was driven by the left.
        We have had two decades of growing extremism on the left.
        We have had two decades (atleast) where those on the left increasingly avoid debate over issues and jump straight to not merely calling opposing political leaders hateful hating haters, but to calling half the country hateful hating haters.

        We just had Jussie Smollet, go to a great deal fo trouble to fake a hate crime against himself, to KNOWINGLY blame MAGA Capped white guys for something that never happened, and when caught what happens ? He not only gets let off the hook, but is back to claiming that he really was the victim of a hate crime.

        This is the near perfect encapsulation of the left today.
        It is about victimhood as status, and if you can not come by that legitimately – fake it.
        It is about treating as predators people you do not know and have never even met.
        Do you think Smollet would have come forward if someone had gotten arrested for committing his fake hate crime ?
        You beleive that those you disagree with are so evil, it is irrelevant to you whether they actually did anything wrong.

        You have nearly no collection to reality.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 4:21 pm

        Robby.

        If you are not going to read my posts, then it is immoral for you to make assertions about what is in them.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 5:01 pm

        I am hard pressed to recall “cheering Trump on”.

        Absolutely I attack people whose idea of debate and discussion is to lob insults and to spew lies.

        I am still working to polish my own posts to eliminate any of the same conduct that I am attacking others for – and that is difficult, the instinct to respond to insult with insult is difficult to resist.

        Regardless, I have mad a conscious decision to kick the moral soapbox out from underneath the morally Smug. That is a very difficult and dangerous task and it is very hard not to come off as just as morally smug as those you are attacking.

        But I am very tired of ceding the moral high ground to people who do not deserve it and whose speach and conduct is more intollerant and more reprehensible than those they are criticising. And I am particularly focused on the putrid remarks of the form
        “Trump is a liar, and anyone who does not think he is the most repugnant creature that ever lived is pond scum”. And we get lots of those posts here everyday.

        What is wrong with you ? Absolutely I am attacking you. There is nothing wrong with attacking those who have labeled half the country excrement.

        Regardless, I am not for the most part defending Trump – he is capable of dealing with that himself.

        I am attacking the enormous moral hypocracy that the left has inflicted on us and that several posters here who claim not to be lefties have marinated themselves in thoroughly.

        I do not enjoy this. But I am sick and tired of the statist left which is responsible for the most egregious things that men have ever done to other men asserting moral superiority over others.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 5:11 pm

        There is no “chicken – egg” problem here – that is more rationalizing your own bad conduct.

        First the left as a whole and you specifically have used insult rather than argument far longer than anyone else. Not just here, but everywhere.

        Attacking the person rather than making an argument is so ingrained in you, that I do not think you are aware that you are doing it.

        Your entire idea of how to make an argument is to demonstrate that whoever you are arguing with is an execrable person.

        Further you are so blind that you see any criticism of your arguments as some kind of parity.

        You seem to think that lobbing insults like grenades is morally indistinguishable from calling out that you are lobbing insults like grenades.

        There is an actual moral and philosophical foundation for your conduct.
        While I know that you are ignorant of that and do not subscribe to it, none the less ideas and philosophies are incredibly powerful, and you have unwittingly been infected with the nihlism of post modernism.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 5:19 pm

        Do not hide behind words like “criticism”.

        An actual debate over issues is “criticism”.

        What you do is “insult”. Frankly if all you did was lob moral accusations at Trump without backing them up – that would generate little pushback.

        The worst problem is that you have gone from “F U” to “F U and everyone who looks like U”.

        Finally, you wish to pretend that everything is somehow morally equivalent.
        That the facts or truth are not relevant. That there is no difference between calling A a liar and Calling B a liar though A is telling the truth and B is not.

        You are like AOC claiming that being wrong about the facts does not matter when you are morally right.

        If you are not right about the facts – you can not be morally right.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 5:20 pm

        You can delete whatever you want – here, or in the broader world.

        You can not pass moral judgements – you can not ever criticism what you have not bothered to read.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 3:35 pm

        Ron was talking about immigration – you jumped to Trump.

        The fact is you are not willing to have a rational conversation about immigration.
        It is easier to shift into TDS mode and ignore the issues.

        And you do this about everything – not just immigration.

        You complain about my posts, but all of your posts, Jay’s posts and DD’s posts are just a constant litany of Trump lied over the length of his fingernails nonsense.

        I have said before you have no principles – but it is worse than that. I think you offered a few values one time. But really you do not even have values.
        All you want is to impose your own “feelings” on the rest of us by force.

        You do not want any real consideration of whatever you propose.
        You have decided that your right and you wont even talk about it.
        But it gets worse – you do not actually know what you are going to do.
        You want to be given power without any accountabilty and then use it based on your feelings at the moment.

        If you want to demonstrate that is not true – prove me wrong, have a REAL discussion about pretty much anything.

        Immigration is a perfect example. There is little doubt that what we have is a mess.

        I hope there is little doubt that it can not be fixed by lobbing platitudes at it.

        I am likely to agree with you on most anything “value” that you assert regarding immigration.
        But it is not enough to say “we should welcome people who face violence in their own countries and seek asylum here”.

        How are you going to make that work ? The more narrow you define asylum the fewer people will be given asylum and in the long run the fewer people who will try to get asylum – IF you rigidly enforce whatever law you choose.

        IF you decide to allow in some groups and exclude others – then you must enforce those decisions. That is with REAL FORCE, Guns if necescary, That is what government and law mean. IF you make a law, and you are not ultimately prepared to use FORCE to enforce it, you are lawless – and almost no one will obey the law.

        The mess we have now, is a set of laws that can not be enforced. Trump did not make that mess.

        But all you want to do is rant about Trump. Not the problem.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 6, 2019 9:45 am

        …To which I can add that not one libertarian or conservative here ever made any complaint when JB ranted about Obama, wished him dead nearly daily, repeated birther conspiracy theories, or other wild shit like wanting snipers on the border to kill all approachers, women children shoot to kill. If all that was not fine with our conservatives/libertarians there was no indication of disapproval.

        Once I asked you Priscilla why you did not object to JB wishing death upon the POTUS in gory terms nearly daily and I got the starchy reply that you thought it was very amusing that I would expect you to criticize another poster.

        And then there is dave’s immoderate approach to TNM.

        So, some of you have a hard time with Jay and dduck and myself and our so-called TDS? We are the ones telling the unvarnished truth. The emperor has no clothes. We each have our styles but I doubt any of us are going to stop while that is the situation.

        If Jay, dduck and I all got tired and went away you would have only dave to talk to and dave would have no reason to stay up all day and night writing his denials and denunciations (that his targets simply screen out without reading!). Its a weird world all right, at TNM and in America.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 3:56 pm

        Robby.

        What you are describing either occured while I was not here or did not occur.

        I do not recall anyone HERE or ANYWHERE regularly wishing death to Obama.

        I do recall people wishing death to Sarah Palin.

        Most – though not all, of the criticism of Obama was about policies, not personalities.

        Absolutely he was attacked for “lying” – ABOUT HEALTH CARE. About an important promise he made to all of us to get elected. About a promise that cause real harm to many people.

        Further there was a ruckus over Obama’s birth certificate – much as there is over Trump’s taxes. With a difference. The constitution requires that the president is born in the US.
        While I do not – and never did doubt that was true of Obama. The extent that Obama went to to hide his birth certificate was insane – and just like you react regarding Trump’s tax return assuming that means he is hiding something, so did many – myself included regarding his birth certificate. I do not beleive Obama has ever provided an unaltered legitimate birth certificate. But I do beleive he was born in the US. Regardless the constitution make birth in the US a job requirement. It does not make tax returns a requirement.
        There are other ways to prove birth in the US besides a birth certificate, and we are not entitled to a birth certificate. Regardless. the so called birther conspiracy was of Obama’s creation.

        If anyone had EVER wished assassination on ANYONE – I would have condemned that.

        There were a tiny number of people who said batshit crazy things about Obama during his presidency. I do not recall any senators and representatives publicly wishing he was dead. I do not recall any much less an army of actors publicly imagining his murder.

        I recall some nobody;s whose only moment of infamy was that they wished death on Obama and then crawled back into their hole.

        Obama was a poor president – just as Bush was. Except that Obama was even more lawless, they are barely distinguishable in their actions.
        I think Bush might have actually been a person of good character.
        I wanted to think that Obama was too, but post 2016 I have had to face the truth, he was the most politically corrupt president we have had.

        Through out Obama’s presidency Republicans did everything in their power to thwart the worst of his policies. They deserve Kudo’s for that. But even if you think they were wrong, the conflict regarding Obama was nearly entirely driven by a completely different view of what government is permitted to do.

        Almost no one called Obama a bad person – we blamed Louis Lehrner, or Eric Holder or Hillary Clinton. But ultimately the fish rots from the head.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 3:58 pm

        No one has asked you to go away.

        I have asked that you debate issues, make arguments, rather than hurl insults.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 6, 2019 1:07 pm

        “Rachel Maddow or Chris Mathews”

        It might amuse you to know that I have never to my knowledge seen these people. I don’t know what they look like. I am not a conventional news junkie, although I will admit that since 911, followed by the crisis, followed by trump I have become some weird form of news junkie, mainly I need to see enough of the headlines to know that nothing big has blown up in the last hour. I read almost no opinion pieces. No NYT now WAPO No HuffPost, no CNN. No conservative sites. Only the headlines on my phone news feed. I do not need a daily reminder that that POTUS is a &^%$#@, I know that already. I try as much as possible not to fixate on him, but the daily rain of his damage does penetrate my barriers.

      • April 6, 2019 4:23 pm

        Roby, lets just say Maddow and Mathews is NBC’s (MSNBC) liberal answer to Hannity and Limbaugh.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 9:00 pm

        A very very long time ago I used to watch Chris Mathews. And I liked him a lot.
        At the time he was smart and more of a barely right of center conservative.

        I have not watched him in a more than a decade. I do not even see clips of him.
        I am assuming he is somehow a wingnut now ?

        Many of our talking heads have become incredibly polarized.

      • April 6, 2019 10:38 pm

        Well I will say I only hear bits and pieces of Chris Mathews show, but he is not the same as he was in the early part of the decade. But to stay on MSNBC one must spew the MSNBC cool aide, so he himself may be moderate left, but just communicates his bosses positions.

        If your interested, there are many clips with Mathews and comments about Trump.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 8:39 pm

        Clinton was a repulsive president – the world did not blow up.
        Bush was a poor president – the world did not blow up.
        Obama was a poor president – the world did not blow up.

        Trump has been president for 2 years – the world has not blown up.

        “Little else is requisite to carry a state to the highest degree of opulence from the lowest barbarism but peace, easy taxes, and a tolerable administration of justice: all the rest being brought about by the natural course of things.”
        Adam Smith

        there is very little that is necescary from a president, a congress a government.

        Nearly every govenrment in existance, nearly every president has figured out how to keep the world from “blowing up” atleast during their tenure.

        The greatest threat, the unavoidable threat of government that does too much is not that it will blow things up tomorow, but that the unintended consequences of some policy compounded over years, decades will “blow the world up”.

        The most dangerous acts of govenrment are NOT the abject failures, Those pass relatively quickly and do not “blow the world up”. It is from those that ALMOST work.
        Small errors compounded over many years, even decades are what will – blow the world up.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 8:50 pm

        “but the daily rain of his damage does penetrate my barriers.”

        There is no “daily rain of damage.

        Every tweet Jay posts, almost ever story on MSNBC, all the breathless outrage over the last Trump offense is all “A tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing”

        The things that actually matter are not what is said but what is done.

        Trump is putting alot of federalist judges on the bench (just as Obama put on left wing nuts).
        The long term impact will be more dramatic than anything else in his presidency.

        Trump has been choking government regulation – in the short run almost inconsequential, but in the lang term large.

        Trade, immigration, North Korea, the mideast, these are all aspects of Trump that will have consequences for many many years to come.

        We can debate the degree of error or offence of his latest tweet, but in any large scheme it is inconsequential.

        I would be happy to have a real discussion of all the substantive issues. That would be a discussion that matters.

        But you do not want to discuss issues. To the extent you address them at all – it is as a vehicle to insult people.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 6, 2019 12:58 am

      “Yes, it’s true that SOME of the illegals intercepted are ‘animals’ as Trump describes.
      But the majority are desperate people, longing for a better, safer life for them and their children.
      Agreed?”

      Jay, even Trump agrees with that.

      You are begging the question.

      Whether you are a good person or a bad one, there is not right to immigrate to the US.

      Citizens get to decide through our laws who we let in.

      And that is the most fundimental conflict today over immigration.

      The left does not want to even address the question of who we let in and who we exclude.

      what Trump is trying (and failing) to do at the moment, is to enforce the immigration law as passed by prior congresses.
      If we are unhappy with that – and many of us are, we should sit down and change it.
      But that is a difficult process – AS IT SHOULD BE.

      It is that process that the left is seeking to avoid.

      If we were to sit down and decide who we should let in – I would be for the largest numbers consistent with our current laws in other areas – such as MW laws, and assorted other Social Safetynet laws. I would prefer to weaken those laws and increase immigration, but that is my preference. And this is a question we must decide as a nation.

      Regardless, there are myriads of factors:

      Do we let people in automatically or easily from poorer countries ?
      From western hemisphere countries ?
      From countries in chaos or war ?
      From countries with natural disasters ?
      Do we favor the educated over less educated?

      And on and on.

      Ultimately we are going to have to say no to many people.

      If you are unable to say no to what will mostlikely be millions of “nice people”
      the atlernative is to return to the 19th century forms of government that were compatible with open boarders.

      But I will propose a different alternative.

      Take who gets in and who does not entirely out of the hands of government.

      Anyone, or any group, or any business is free to sponsor the immigrant of their choosing.
      Short of a contagious medical problem or a criminal issue government will approve anyone with a sponsor. No country quotas, no race quotas, no discrimination by government of any kind.

      But the requirements of sponsorship must have teeth. Sponsors must be responsible for the immigrants they sponsor. Financially, in terms of health care, jobs, everything.

      Now the choice of who gets in and who does not is up to the people.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 6, 2019 4:30 am

      Mr. Elliots tweet is quite clearly false and deceptive.

      Elliot make it appear that Trump is talking about people asking for asylum.
      If you listen to more than a few second cut of the conversation it was entirely about ICE detainers for criminal immigrants in our state and local prisons.

      There was no discussion at all about asylum seekers.
      This was not about people stopped at the border, this was about people who were caught by state and local police committing CRIMES.

  74. dduck12 permalink
    April 5, 2019 9:55 pm

    Jay, of course his comment and many many more, are unacceptable, but we knew he has the rhetorical skills of an ill-educated person. Couple that with the business ethics of a crooked landlord/real estate mogul, mixed in a disregard for women except as objects. Plus his handling of the Puerto Rico and border disasters brings up the question of possible anti-Hispanic bias or outright racism.
    All in all, not the kind of person I want representing me as president.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 6, 2019 1:33 am

      FEMA should not exist. Puerto Rico was a disaster waiting to happen.
      Frankly the US should just grant it independence and be done with it.

      Do you always equate political views that differ from your own with racism ?

      The US is doing little to address the disaster that is currently Venezuella – is that racist ?

      BTW disaster releif to PR exceeded FEMA’s entirely yearly spending for every single past year prior to Katrina.

      2018 disaster releif spending was nearly 100 times that of 2004 and nearly 300 times that of 2009 and yet 2018 was not particularly exceptional.

  75. dduck12 permalink
    April 5, 2019 10:13 pm

    Al Sharpton: Someone from NY (maybe the Bronx) should know to avoid, AOC I stupid financially also:
    “Investor rips Ocasio-Cortez as ‘financially illiterate’ at Sharpton conference”
    “https://nypost.com/2019/04/…

  76. April 5, 2019 11:09 pm

    While listening to some interviews today concerning entitlements, new social programs and other election issues, the conversation shifted to Finland and their social support systems. How well they work, how medical is “free”, how education works, how college is funded by the government.

    My first reaction ,No Way! But then I looked up information on Finland. Corporate tax rates of 20%….OK. Individual tax rates , three teirs starting at 8% and tops out at 31.75%….OK. Social Securiity rate of 6.25%-8% depending on employee age and company contibution of about 16%…OK

    So they are not much different than us. But wait, Finland has a VAT of 24%. Everything that is produced has this applied through out the manufacturing to sale. Everything is increased 24%. …OK, I’m getting interested. AND everyone pays this because they pay it when they buy stuff. No 46% of the families in Finland not supporting their government. Now I will uy the European model!

    So any democrat that proposes medicare for all, paid college and all of the other programs tied to a 24% VAT in the USA, then I might vote for them. No more 46% not paying Federal Income taxes!

    • April 6, 2019 8:00 am

      Ron, what are Finland’s social welfare programs like? Specifically, do they have income levels under which families receive substantial subsidies for food, medical care, housing, and other aspects of daily living, which they cannot afford due to insufficient income.

      If that is so, then isn’t the VAT simply recycling tax money from income earning citizens to non-income earners? I don’t see the value in this.

      I was curious about Finland, because I had read that their country was in crisis, so this happy talk that is coming out of the socialist left confused me, and I found this:

      “When you talk to the common people of Finland, you get the impression that they are resigned. There is true despair among the lower ranks of society. The elderly and sick feel they are forgotten. Families with children feel the government intrudes in everyday life. There are thousands of children who get their only meal in school. The taxation rate is going up. The total tax ratio might reach 50 % in the near future. VAT (Value Added Tax) is 24 %; food is 14%; and medicine 10%. Finland has progressed from being a country with a slight difference in the gap between rich and poor, to a country with a considerable gap between the two, and it is rising at that! The reason for this was a big tax reform done in 1993 by the government of Esko Aho (Center party). The most damaging decision was separate investment income from income taxation. Later this led to straight tax evasion since senior executives and business owners started to get their salaries in stocks or options rather than salaries because of the favorable tax rate in an investment tax ratio. This might have never happened if there would have been a strong president or a real opposition party which would have opposed such bad decisions.”
      http://katehon.com/1255-what-happened-to-finland-from-a-welfare-state-to-the-next-greece.html

      So, maybe we don’t want to go the Finland route?

      • April 6, 2019 10:49 am

        My point. There is not one politician in this country that is going to propose any new entitlement and tie that entitlement funding to a european form of funding they use. Anyone who proposed a 24% VAT would be recalled, impeached, kidnappec or in someway removed from office. They may even file for a mental evaluation because they would think this person is nuts.

        But also, why doesnt the GOP communicate this information other than “that will cost $10B over 10 years and we cant afford that”. Democrats just say ” tax the rich, fair share”

        But I do love the idea of a VAT now that I understand a VAT is paid by everyone. Anyone that lives in America and enjoys our freedoms and democracy should pay a tax to support those. But I would also make anyone in the active military or reserve in active service exempt from taxes.

      • April 6, 2019 12:53 pm

        The GOP rarely fights back, and , even when they do, they end up fighting with each other about how they should fight back. When it comes to taxes, they are all about tax cuts, but they are never willing to fight for spending cuts. So, the Democrats are able to say that Republicans don’t care about the poor and give tax cuts to the rich. The voters, mostly ignorant of how out-of-control the federal government’s spending is, or how it affects them, can more easily understand the socialist “fair share” argument. The “rising tide lifts all boats,” which is the way JFK sold tax cuts, doesn’t work anymore, because it’s been undermined by the welfare state, which sells itself as the rising tide.

        Look what happens every time there is an attempt to cut tax funding for PBS, National Endowment for the Arts, Special Olympics or, lord forbid, Planned Parenthood. Every one of those organizations is extremely well-funded, and doesn’t need a penny of taxpayer money. But, the minute the liberals start wailing, Republicans back right down, without a fight. Even Trump.

        I also like the idea of no taxes for active duty military.

      • April 6, 2019 3:56 pm

        Priscilla, I agree with all you said.
        As I said a couple days ago, Democrats never saw an entitlement they did not like. Republicans never saw an entitlement they were willing to cut.

        There is not one thing that could not be fixed, spending reduced, benefits provided improved and deficits reduced if politics were eliminated and business processes applied to government programs.

        Not until term.limits become a way that politicians do not have a gaurenteed career will it happen. As long as the next election is more important than the country, politics will drive the narrative. That iswhy we have the mess today.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 6, 2019 6:17 pm

        Priscilla,
        the problem is structural.

        It is why our founders tried to limit the power of government, and why they made using that power difficult.

        As Lord Acton said – “Power corrupts”.

        It corrupts republicans and democrats.

        Our constitution made it difficult to pass laws, to raise taxes and to spend public funds.
        The constitution has not changed, but over 250 years we have bent what it said such that it is easier to pass laws, raise taxes and spend public funds, and much harder to reverse those.

        Some of this is natural – and again encapsulated in Acton’s Maxim.

        Government – whether a clerk at the DMV or the president of the United States is a job that offers power, and power corrupts.

        The incentives everywhere are to increase ones power.
        We do not have the social safetynet because it is a good idea or because politicians are altrusitic, but because it provides power to politicians and others in government.

        You should read about public choice theory – it is basically how to the core principles of human behavior that are nearly self regulating in the private economy, work inside of govenrment. And the answer is horribly. The very incentives and motives that make the free mark not merely work, but the most powerful force for good in existance all drive towards evil in government.

  77. dhlii permalink
    April 7, 2019 3:26 am

    Today the DC court of appeals rule on the release of Grand Jury material.
    This was in a different case, the Grand Jury material was 6 decades old,
    The court said NO!!!!

    The article linked below is horribly mushy and incoherent in its analysis – pretending that this is not an issue for releasing the material to the House, yet if you read the article carefully it most definitely is.

    The DC court ruled that ONLY the explicit exceptions listed in the Federal Rules of Judicial Procedure are permissible reasons to release GJ material, that the courts can not create new exceptions on their own. That pretty much means Nadler is SOL.

    It Might be possible for the house judiciary committee subpeona GJ material – but ONLY if they start impeachment. And even that is not certain. Judge Sirica ordered the release of GJ material to the house judiciary committee when it was in the process of impeaching Nixon.
    That is NOT a Rule 6(e) exception, but it is a precedent. The current DC court of appeals decision appears to reverse even that exception.

    So lets cut the crap – FOLLOW THE LAW!!!!

    There is no special “I do not like Trump” exception to the rule of law.
    Whatever is done here will become the norm in the future – so FOLLOW THE LAW.

    But there are things that can be done.

    Barr can be called to testify. I beleive that AG permission would be needed, but Rosenstein and Mueller could be called to testify.

    To me that appears to be the best way to communicate the substance of Muellers investigation.

    Muller, Barr, and Rosenstein would be obligated to avoid GJ material in their testimony, ‘
    But it is their job to do so.

    If that is insufficient – and frankly absent Mueller confirming the NYT story which I think is as likely as snow in hell, this should be DEAD!!!!!

    If Nadler wants to waste everyone’s time running his own investigation in the beleif that Barr and Mueller conspired to protect Trump, he is free to do so.

    But if Mueller testifies and does not significantly diverge from the Barr Memo, this should be over, and the political price for democrats will increase exponentially if they can not let go.

    Alternately, the House and or DOJ can ask for and hopefully get the permission of each person named in the GJ material to release GJ information. I beleive Barr has already taken Trump’s public statements as permission to release GJ material regarding Trump.

    But no one can give permission to release material about someone other than themselves.

    This would be a tedious process and probably take months. Inevitably a few people will likely decline.

    The house can also take DOJ to court.
    If they do, they are going to have to go to SCOTUS to win, and that is not likely.

    To address Ron’s proposal – there are no provisions in the law to form some special bipartisan task force to review GJ material.
    Out side the specific exceptions provided by Rule 6(e). GJ material can not be released – not to the public, not to Senators, or the comittee chair in the house.

    If we do not like this CHANGE THE LAW!!!!

    https://www.politico.com/story/2019/04/05/grand-jury-mueller-report-1259671

    • Jay permalink
      April 7, 2019 9:29 am

      A three judge panel decided the outcome on a two to one vote, with a strong dissenting opionion.

      It will be quickly appealed (within a week?) to be heard by a fuller panel. And likely get kicked to SCOTUS no matter what that decision is.

      • April 7, 2019 10:09 am

        Jay, and I would hope that SCOTUS takes this case and rules quickly. But quick to them will be sometime in 2020. Right about the time of the campaigns. But thats how it works when following prescribed procedures.

        And unless one of the judges kick the bucket before next Oct expect a 5-4 decision.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 7, 2019 3:19 pm

        This pretty much puts the kibosh on Nadler getting the courts to enforce his Subpeona anytime soon.

        I strongly approve of this decision.

        Our choices should be clear:

        Follow the law as it is
        Change the law.
        Get permission of those involved.

        All of those choices respect the underlying constitutional principles.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 7, 2019 3:08 pm

        “A three judge panel decided the outcome on a two to one vote, with a strong dissenting opionion.”
        They followed the law.
        Even the One Judge that disented still would have required the approval of the court to release GJ material.

        “It will be quickly appealed (within a week?) to be heard by a fuller panel.”
        It may be appealed.
        It may not.
        A larger panel may decide to hear it .
        The norm is they would not.
        If they do, it would not likely be a quick decision, and in the meantime, the current decision stands.

        “And likely get kicked to SCOTUS no matter what that decision is.”

        Nor is there a guarantee that an appeal to SCOTUS would be heard.

        There are roughly 4 choices:

        1). The rule 6(e) exceptions are the only permitted exceptions.
        That is the current DC court decision.
        Congress could change the law to add another exception.

        2). The Rule 6(e) exceptions AND as well as RARE court created exceptions are allowed with the approval of the court. That is what the disenting judge argued.

        That still does not get you the GJ material without:
        a) The house formally starting impeachment
        b) The court creating a new exception which would be a lengthy process, probably involving appeals,

        3). The courts deciding they can do as they please.
        Even the disenting judge is not going to bless that.

        4). The courts deciding congress can do as it pleases.
        Not happening.

        Regardless, of whether you agree with their decision the court just made the release of GJ material harder.

        I would further suggest looking at #1 again. It is the only choice that conforms to the rule of law. It is the only choice where it is possible to product the outcome so long as the courts follow the law as written. That is a part of what the rule of law means.
        If you are asking the court to act, and what they decide depends on their politics, their personal values, or ANYTHING other than the words of the law – then you are lawless.

        #1 is also the only resolution where that clarity can be maintained.
        When you do not like the law – you do not try to persuade the courts to massage the law,
        you change the law.

        Finally, you already have the ability to get everything you want while conforming to the law – persuade the people involved to allow the release of GJ material involving them.

  78. dhlii permalink
    April 7, 2019 3:38 am

    I do not agree with all of this.
    But I do agree with alot of it.

    More importantly – an awful large number of people also agree with this.

    If you are one of the Collusion nutcases – it is likely you do not know many people who see you as a nutcase, because you are surrounded by other nutcases like yourself.

    One of the points not well made in this editorial is that there has NEVER been a credible reason to buy this nonsense. Trump has been “exonerated” by an investigation that never should have happened.

    https://amgreatness.com/2019/04/04/dear-citizen-collusion-truther-you-own-this-too/

  79. dhlii permalink
    April 7, 2019 3:51 am

    From recent Rassmussen polling.

    Trump’s approval rate is 51% and rising.
    His strong disapproval rate is below 40%

    The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 50% of Likely U.S. Voters are satisfied with the conclusions reached by Mueller that there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government in the 2016 presidential campaign and no proof of obstruction of justice on the part of the president. Thirty-six percent (36%) are not satisfied, while 13% are undecided.

    A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 47% of Likely U.S. Voters think Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign is more likely than President Trump’s to have illegally colluded with foreign operatives. Nearly as many (45%) still suspect the Trump campaign more.

    Fifty-six percent (56%) of Likely U.S. Voters believe senior federal law enforcement officials are likely to have broken the law in their discussions in May 2017 to oust Trump, with 37% who say it is Very Likely. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 36% consider that unlikely, with 19% who say it’s Not At All Likely that they broke the law.

    Fifty-one percent (51%) think a special prosecutor should be named to investigate the discussions among senior Justice Department and FBI officials in May 2017 to remove the president from office. Thirty-eight percent (38%) disagree, but 11% are undecided

    Only 36% say no disciplinary action should be taken against the senior law enforcement officials who discussed removing the president from office. Twenty-one percent (21%) say they should be fired, while even more (25%) think they should be jailed. Twelve percent (12%) are calling for a formal reprimand of these officials.

    By a 50% to 40% margin, voters think it’s likely senior federal law enforcement officials broke the law in an effort to prevent Trump from winning the presidency. As in virtually all surveys related to Trump, however, there is a wide difference of opinion between Democrats and Republicans.

    The high-level discussions by Justice Department and FBI officials about removing Trump from office followed the president’s firing of FBI Director James Comey. But voters don’t rate Comey’s FBI performance too highly. Nearly two-out-of-three Republicans (65%) and a plurality (46%) of unaffiliated voters said Comey should be prosecuted for leaking to anti-Trump media while serving as FBI director. Just 29% of Democrats agreed.

    Democrats are hopeful that they can impeach Trump if election collusion with the Russians is proven, but just 27% of Democrats – and 16% of all voters – think the new Congress should focus first on impeachment.

    A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 42% of Likely U.S. Voters believe Russia is more likely than the FBI to have meddled in the 2016 presidential race. But 34% now think the FBI is more likely to have meddled in the election, while one-in-four voters (24%) are not sure which was the bigger meddler.

    Some recently disclosed internal e-mails also suggest that the FBI chose for political reasons not to seek an indictment of Hillary Clinton in 2016. Less than three weeks before the election, most voters (53%) still disagreed with the FBI’s decision not to seek an indictment of the Democratic presidential nominee for her sloppy handling of classified information, but only 44% felt that way after she lost the election.

    A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that only 54% of Likely Democratic Voters believe Clinton won last year’s Democratic presidential nomination fairly. Twenty-seven percent (27%) say the party’s electoral system was rigged against challenger Bernie Sanders, while 19% are undecided.

    Among all likely voters, just 32% now think Clinton won her party’s nomination fairly. Forty-seven percent (47%) say the Democrats’ electoral system was rigged against Sanders. Twenty-one percent (21%) are not sure.

    Forty-two percent (42%) believe Clinton is less ethical than most politicians, but 18% say she is more ethical than most of her peers. Thirty-six percent (36%) rate her ethics as about the same as theirs. These perceptions are little changed from August of last year during the presidential campaign.

    A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that only 40% of Likely U.S. Voters believe America would be better off today if Hillary Clinton had been elected president instead of Donald Trump. A plurality (47%) disagrees and says the country would not be better off. Thirteen percent (13%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

    Forty-six percent (46%) of voters now approve of the job Trump is doing. Forty-three percent (43%) say the country is headed in the right direction, a finding that ran in the mid- to upper 20s most weeks during President Obama’s last full year in office.

    • Jay permalink
      April 7, 2019 9:39 am

      Rasmussen is as full of crap as ever.

      Out of the ten listed pollsters on RCP today the positive-negative for Trump averages minus 9 points. If you remove Rasmussen from the average it’s closer to minus 11 points NEGATIVE.

      • vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
        April 7, 2019 10:34 am

        Exactly. But I am glad when they believe bad intelligence. Battle depends on the best information and data. One more sign of incompetence in the facts and logic department.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 7, 2019 3:49 pm

        “Exactly. But I am glad when they believe bad intelligence. Battle depends on the best information and data. One more sign of incompetence in the facts and logic department.”

        2016

      • dhlii permalink
        April 7, 2019 3:15 pm

        “Rasmussen is as full of crap as ever.”

        And yet Rassmussen was closest to correct in 2016 (and most of the elections from 2010 tot he present).

        Rasmussen is not “full of crap” they are just sometimes good and sometimes not.
        The same is true of every other poll.

        With rare exceptions they all follow the same trends, albeit with their own offset.

        If rasmussen is reporting that attitudes are changing – then so likely will everyone, even if they do not get exactly the same numbers.

        BTW many polls other than Rassmussen have found the public has lost interest in the Trump/russia nonsense – and that was BEFORE Mueller.

        Even Rassmussen notes that voters beleive things that are self contradictory.

  80. dhlii permalink
    April 7, 2019 4:27 am

  81. April 7, 2019 10:25 am

    I know there are some here that wont agree with this, but it is my understanding that SCOTUS had never ruled on GJ testimony being made public for very obvious reasons. It is one thing for testimony to be released concerning some case against Ron if the law permitted, but it is very different for information coming out about NY drug rings, Chicago gangs or other major crime syndicates. If GJ testimony was allowed to be released, the courts would be swamped by request to redact information, many people refusing to sit on a grand jury or even deaths when testimony was released.

    When the democrats demand that Mueller info be relessed, they know it cant. It will set a precedent that will open a pandoras box no one wsnts to see. They are just using this tactic to keep this issue front and ceter for the 2020 election.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 7, 2019 3:37 pm

      There are myriads of reasons to protect the confidentiality of GJ proceedings.

      BTW though the GJ rules are more clearly defined.

      It is generally unethical, and often illegal, to release NON-GJ material on a criminal investigation.

      As Gowdy has been saying over and over.

      Law enforcement speaks by indicting and prosecuting.

      Law enforcement is NOT the oppo research arm of the politcal parties.
      It is not a tool for people to use to dig into the affairs of their neighbors.
      It is not there to pass judgement on anything but whether a crime was committed and by whom.

      If you want to violate the privacy of others, you have to act on your own to do so.
      Or through the press.

      I do not care about Trump. I do care about the future.

      One of the things that has been obvious through the obama administration is that the rules, the law have not been followed.

      Comey was supposed to investigate Clinton and provide the results of DOJ,
      Not report to the press.
      DOJ was supposed to follow the law and in this case that would require seeking an indictment.

      The public learned everything they needed to know from the Benghazi hearings.

      To the extent there is any distinction regarding Clinton – it is because her criminal conduct was as a public servant. There is no public right to know about the private activities of others. There is a broad (but not unlimited) right to know about the conduct of government.

      Conversely though conducted criminally the FBI investigation of Trump until near the end of the campaign did not leak. I think government employees are better at keeping their criminal activities secret.

      The leaks started after Trump was elected, as an act of desparation.

      Prior to the election while the conduct of the DOJ/FBI was criminal and excreble,
      it was also mostly a hail mary and mostly they knew they had nothing.

      the investigation changed character after the election.

      It changed from an investigation, to an effort by insiders and former Obama staff to undermine Trump, and to try to entrap him into acting in a way that would justify further investigation and ultimately an SC.

      It is difficult to tell at this point of SC Mueller’s office actually leaked much.

      While we have alot of leaks purportedly sourced in Mueller’s office,
      all or nearly all of them have proven FALSE.
      Suggesting the sources are NOT from Mueller’s office.
      That they are either current or former DOJ/FBI would are LYING to the press.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 7, 2019 3:47 pm

      I am strongly in favor of finding the means to provide people with the accurate results of the investigation.

      But I am not in favor of trashing the rule of law to do so.

      I beleive that sufficient means exists to provide the few remaining skeptics much of what they beleive they need to know.

      Barr can testify.
      I beleive that Mueller and Rosenstein can testify.

      I do not beleive that is necescary – but it is in the public interest to salve the fears of those who have not been persuaded, and to strengthen the understanding of those who have.

      There needs to be an investigation of the investigation, and to do that requires a broad base of understanding that there was nothing there and never was.

      I would also like to see as much of the investigative material as possible released.
      Alot of that can be done. But it can not be done just by House Subpeona.

      I am adamantly opposed to expanding the power of congress to demand and get whatever it wants about ordinary people who were targets of criminal investigations.

      Congresses role is OVERSIGHT of the federal government.
      It is not to investigate ordinary people.

      I am opposed to congress getting ANYONE’s tax records.
      I am opposed to their getting ANYONE’s financial records or business records.

      Nadler can dig as deeply as he wishes into Trump’s conduct AS PRESIDENT.

  82. dhlii permalink
    April 7, 2019 4:09 pm

    Good advice to Democrats for 2020.
    https://www.nationaljournal.com/s/677871?unlock=OVBW84B01K2AVQPR

  83. dhlii permalink
    April 7, 2019 5:07 pm

    If you are going to prosecute Flynn, Papadoulus, Van Der Zandt, Stone – even the excerable Cohen, for “lying”.

    Then you must also prosecute this.

    Clinton tries to obfuscated using “marked classified”.

    Some of the contents of her emails was MARKED classified.

    But it is actually what was NOT that is even more egregious.

    You do not find Classified information just lying on someone’s desk.

    Marked or not Classified information is either kept inside a SCIF or securely carried between SCIF’s by an FSO.

    You read Classified material in a SCIF and you leave the SCIF go to a computer and from memory type that classified information into an email – you have violated 18cfr793(e) – that would be the INTENTIONAL release of classified information.

    Whether the emails Clinton sent/received contained MARKED classified information, there is no means that it could get into an email that does not involve someone knowingly reading and later copying classified information – either MARKED or inside a SCIF.

    Right now an Aide for Sen. Hassan is headed to jail for taking unclassified but private material from the Senate Computer system and transfering from that system to the internet.

    I do not know whether Clinton personally transfered classified information from a SCIF to email on the internet – but SOMEONE did, and it is a crime.
    And it is NOT something that can be done accidentally.

    • April 7, 2019 6:33 pm

      So they put a new name to something I have believed in for almost 30 years. Guess the milleniels need a name for everything.

      But I will say there is one thing that I disagree with. The author states conservatarians believe sex work and marijuana should be legal, but still view rhem as immoral. I am moral libertarian in this regard. I see no difference in marijuana use than alcohol. And making money off sex while others give it away is smart to me, not immoral. Sex before marriage to me is the same, free or otherwise.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 7, 2019 9:49 pm

        What he calls “conservatarian” I would just call a particularly republican/trumpian version of libertarian.

        There is actually something called “bleeding heart libertarian” it is not what he describes.

        Much of what he describes as “libertarian” is values held by some libertarians.

        There is no formal defintion of libertarain.

        The closest is adherance to the NAP – Non-Agreession Principle.

        But many libertarians are not committed to the NAP.

        Some of what he calls libertarian is “anarch-capitalism” – ancaps do not mostly call themselves libertarians, and libertarians do not mostly consider ancaps libertarian.

        Much of the “bomb throwing anarchist” grenades that get thrown at me and other libertarians more properly apply to ancaps.

        The fundimental distinction between ancaps and libertarains is libertarians are minarchists.
        Ancaps privatize EVERYTHING – including the state.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 7, 2019 9:53 pm

        The law is about morality – but a very narrow form of morality. It is about negative morality.
        your obligation to NOT do some things – like use force against others.

        I have no problem with the conclusion that drug use and prositution are immoral.
        That does not make them the business of government.

        If your actions are not violent, do not harm others, and do not breach committments you made, they are not the business of government

    • Jay permalink
      April 7, 2019 6:18 pm

      Perhaps Trump should take up a new sport – say Rhino Poaching:

      South Africa: Poacher killed by elephant then eaten by lions https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-47843999

    • dhlii permalink
      April 7, 2019 9:43 pm

      I grew up living next to a golf course. I never liked golf or golfers.
      It is one of the things I do not like about Trump.

  84. dduck12 permalink
    April 7, 2019 7:49 pm

    Is it too much for pertinent congressional committees to ask the IRS if a person they have oversight authority over, if that person, entity. whatever, is auditing specific years?

    If I were up for a Federal security sensitive job, I would not mind or hinder the IRS answering.
    Matter of fact, Congress should f—–, the IRS to answer without delay.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 7, 2019 10:05 pm

      There are only two places in the constitution that the relationship between individuals and govenrment are addressed.

      The one is the defintion of treason. Our founders were very familiar with the broad abuse of assertions of treasons so they defined treason in the constitution.

      The other is the constitution specifically prohibts laws that target one or a few people.

      In my view government – particularly LAW MAKERS should NEVER involve themselves in any inquiry about private individuals private conduct.
      That would include tax returns.
      Congressional oversight would include almost everything about the IRS’s actions that do not require revealing any information about specific individuals.

      Asking how frequently a specific person or business is audited would be out of bounds.

      However as you are near certainly talking about Trump.

      We know the answer. People and businesses like Trump’s are audited pretty much constantly.

      The fixation on Trump’s tax return is just stupid.

      I have little doubt he is audited regularly, even a friendly IRS audit will result in additonal taxes far greater than the salary of the auditing agent. Trump and businesses like his are low lying fruit for the IRS.

      Further his taxes are gone over by an army of accountants and lawyers.

      You are not going to find anything.

      • Jay permalink
        April 8, 2019 2:40 pm

        Audit Smaudit blah blah blah.

        Nixon’s taxes were released for examination during an audit.

        And you have no idea what will be revealed if/when his taxes are released.

        But you can bet your ass Trump knows. That’s why he won’t release them after promising to do so.

      • April 8, 2019 3:43 pm

        Jay, “Nixon’s taxes were released for examination during an audit.”

        if you want to comment about Trump and his position on his taxes, be careful who you compare his action with.

        Nixon had been audited and passed IRS review. Later, during the early part of Watergate, another IRS audit occurred based on other issues that came to light. It had to do with capital gains on a NY residence he sold to buy San Clemente. After that audit, Nixon himself released his taxes to use that to misdirect attention from Watergate in hopes the press would forget about Watergate. It was those returns that went through many months of review by everyone.

        http://www.taxhistory.org/thp/readings.nsf/cf7c9c870b600b9585256df80075b9dd/f8723e3606cd79ec85256ff6006f82c3?OpenDocument

        So congress, the IRS nor any other government official released Nixons records. Nixon did.

        The conversation should never be about government releasing anything that is personal information without the permission of that person or through a trial where evidence is provided in a case against them.

        The conversation can be about Trump himself refusing to release information and why he would do that.

        Or the conversation can be if America should pass a law that any Rep, Senator, President, cabinel member and SCOTUS judge is required within 90 days of accepting that position that a certain number of years taxes would be released to the public. Any current member would be required to release them after their next election, or in the case of SCOTUS, within a certain number of years. This would give any sitting member in any of theee.positions the opportunity to decide not to run or resign after a generious number of years of new year tax returns.

        It all comes down to the fourth amendment which covers all Americans, including elected officials . “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated. ” Releasing ones taxes is a persons “papers” ( now more know as records). We can also debate judicial activism v judicial restraint on how this is applied to government officials “papers”

      • Jay permalink
        April 8, 2019 8:02 pm

        Thanks for the Nixon clarification, Ron.
        But Trump’s excuse that his taxes can’t be released becausing they’re being audited is BS.
        Wonder what/who he’s hiding?

        Those Trump taxes will be made public, sooner or later.

        NY State legislators are working to get Trump’s state taxes released, and they will contain much of the same info as his federal taxes.

      • April 8, 2019 8:52 pm

        Yes, and the next step will be a ruling to put the NY Law on hold, then appeals and finally SCOTUS ruling.

        I believe requiring federally elected officials and appointees to release taxes is not a bad law because they will be paid by the citizens of the USA. But I also dont believe one states law will pass the opinions of 5 of the SCOTUS judges. But with John Roberts, who knows.

        A federal.law passed by congress requiring this may get past SCOTUS, but even then the constitution is clear on the qualifications to fill these positions. Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 of the Constitution sets three qualifications for holding the presidency. To serve as president, one must be a natural-born U.S. citizen of the United States, must be at least thirty-five years old and must be a resident in the United States for at least fourteen years. How congress can add qualifications without an amendment like the 22nd amendment is beyond my understanding and we will see what happens.

        Who knows why Trump does not want them released? Illegal dealings or an ego that does not want anyone to see how little may have given charities after bragging about how much he gave.

      • Jay permalink
        April 8, 2019 9:47 pm

        What Federal laws prohibit states from releasing state taxes to state authorities?
        SCOTUS will refuse to hear that suit.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 2:36 am

        Public(not private) disclosure of financial information is a horrible public policy choice.

        WE did that in my state decades ago. Now it is near impossible to get reputable businessmen to serve on school boards etc.

        Public disclosure laws guarantee that only those who do not value privacy and who have never accomplished anything fill our public positions.

        In my state the rapid rise of school costs coincided with public disclosure laws.
        Everyone who had the skills and experience to make wise multi-million dollar decisions refused to serve and they were replaced by clueless spendthrifts.

        Are you able to solve the problems in your own life ?
        Do you actually do all the things you know you should, rather than what you want to ?
        Do the choices you make in your own life work out as you expect them to ?

        Are you able to solve the problems in your own family ?

        If you can not do these why do you beleive that you are able to solve the problems of random strangers (by force) ?

        Everything that sounds like a good idea does not prove to be a good idea in practice.

        One of the laws of physics is that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
        Human action is similar – except the backlash can easily dwarf the inital act.

        Good intentions often produce the worst results.

      • April 9, 2019 11:04 am

        Dave, “Everyone who had the skills and experience to make wise multi-million dollar decisions refused to serve and they were replaced by clueless spendthrifts.”

        The case you site is local and that is a decision locals make. But show me anyone in Washington elected to a federal position that are not clueless spendthrifts even without the tax return requirement. Show me anyone that is actually qualified to sit in D.C.

        There arn’t any!!! Or they would be howling from the highest roof ( figure of speech, not literally) about spending, debt and deficit. Trump? Hell no or he would be leading the charge with daily tweets about spending and its impact on the future.

        If I had a choice, I would prefer honest incompetents in Washington instead of dishonest incompetents in Washington.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 10, 2019 4:15 am

        “Show me anyone that is actually qualified to sit in D.C.”

        Probably no one.

        That said, overall I think Trump’s business world appointments have proven much more capable than your average Washington politico.

        “If I had a choice, I would prefer honest incompetents in Washington instead of dishonest incompetents in Washington. ”

        The odds of someone from a business background being honest are about 1000 times greater than someone from a government background.

      • Jay permalink
        April 9, 2019 4:50 pm

        Those who hold public office, allowing them to make and enforce laws DIRECTLY effecting our lives, need to be held to a higher standard of transparency than ordinary citizens. And higher codes of ethical standards.

        Surely you agree with that…

      • dhlii permalink
        April 10, 2019 4:32 am

        “Those who hold public office, allowing them to make and enforce laws DIRECTLY effecting our lives, need to be held to a higher standard of transparency than ordinary citizens. And higher codes of ethical standards.

        Surely you agree with that…”

        Not as you expressed it.

        The conduct of those WITHIN GOVERNMENT – should be as near fully transparent as possible.

        Any employer – public or private, can demand to know whatever they want of your private life in return for employing you. And you are free to decline and seek a different job.

        Voters are free to demand whatever they wish from candidates – we are doing the hiring.
        But if we do not get what we want we express our displeasure in the voting booth.

        There is not a right to know the private conduct of a person just because they choose to run for office.

        Separately, the press is still free to enquire (within the law) about the lives of anyone – public or private, and publish whatever they find so long as it is true.

        Anything beyond that is a violation of rights.
        And my wish or yours for information does not justify infringing on rights.

        If you want more information about candidates for office:

        Ask them. If they do not answer, vote accordingly.

        or Change the constitution.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 2:26 am

        “But Trump’s excuse that his taxes can’t be released becausing they’re being audited is BS.”
        I do not care what Trump’s reasons are. You do not have a right to anyone else’s taxes.
        It is that simple.

        “Wonder what/who he’s hiding?”
        What he is hiding is that he is rich.

        “Those Trump taxes will be made public, sooner or later.”
        Unless Trump gives his permission making them public would be a crime.
        Even the law Nadler is trying to use – which is a poor fit, still limits disclosure to about 4 people in congress.

        “NY State legislators are working to get Trump’s state taxes released, and they will contain much of the same info as his federal taxes.”

        Almost certainly a state crime, and even if it was not – still unconstitutional.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 2:17 am

        You would have to amend the constitution to change the requirements to hold federal elected office.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 2:22 am

        “It all comes down to the fourth amendment which covers all Americans, including elected officials ”

        The 4th amendment is ONE part of it

        There are myriads of reasons that GJ material in specific and investigative records for a case that was never prosecuted are/should not be made public

        Among others they short circuit defamation law.
        Court proceedings and what you say as part of an investigation are not subject to defamation claims. Someone can lie about you up the whazoo to a police officer or Grand Jury.

        If that is subsequently published you can not sue for defamation.

        That is just ONE of many issues.

        The presumption of innocence is another.

      • April 9, 2019 10:49 am

        Dave , “There are myriads of reasons that GJ material in specific and investigative records for a case that was never prosecuted are/should not be made public”.

        I was addressing Jay’s comment about Nixon releasing tax info and Trump has not, either voluntarily or otherwise.

        But since you say GJ material can not or should not be made public, please provide info on when Trump became a federal tax case before the GJ.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 10, 2019 4:12 am

        While there is a common thread – the right to privacy tying together the tax issue and the GJ material, they are different issues.

        I think Trump’s claim regarding audits is a faux justification.
        But he does not need a justification to refuse to provide his taxes.

        There is nothing wrong with providing such information voluntarily.
        Tax returns GJ material about yourself.

        But each of us controls our own privacy.

        Further though we are purportedly discussing Trump – I am discussing rights first and foremost and the law next.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 2:08 am

        “Audit Smaudit blah blah blah.”

        I did not argue that. All I am arguing is that neither you nor congress have the right to ANYONE’s taxes without their permission.

        “Nixon’s taxes were released for examination during an audit.”
        I have no idea if that is true, and do not trust you to get it right.
        Further what Nixon did voluntarily is irrelevant.

        “And you have no idea what will be revealed if/when his taxes are released.”

        Of course I do. You can go to the IRS website and download every single tax form that Trump could possibly have to provide.

        Aside from the fact that most of the things you claim about Trump financially – like money laundering, reflect a lack of understanding of what money laundering is. your tax return is NOT going to tell if you are laundering money.

        At best it will provide clues as to whether you properly paid your taxes.
        Tax returns do not PROVE much of anything – not even tax evasion.
        They do not as an example tell anyone what you paid to whom.

        At best they tell what you paid for – that you claim as an expense, and then often in general terms – 547.38 in office supplies. That is why the IRS audits people. Because the tax return is not proof that you have underpaid your taxes,

        “But you can bet your ass Trump knows.”
        I doubt that. His tax return is enormous. Hell, even my own is a couple of hundred pages.
        I do not know all of what is in it.

        “That’s why he won’t release them after promising to do so.”
        Again you are not telepathic. You can not know anything about why anyone does anything beyond what they say. It is hubris to pretend otherwise.
        Maybe you are right – it is possible, but possible is not the same as true.

      • Jay permalink
        April 8, 2019 9:42 pm

        Promises from Trump, like farts in the wind…

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 2:55 am

        Even Trump can not fart as much as CNN

    • dhlii permalink
      April 7, 2019 10:11 pm

      There is little difference between a congressmen asking a federal agency to do favors for a friend or political contributor, and government asking a government agency to make an enemies life difficult – except that the later is even more criminal than the first.

      I do not want the IRS or any other federal agency being asked to do favors for or to scrutinize anyone – absent a credible allegation of actual misconduct.

      And even then – they do not report back to congress about anything regarding private individuals.

  85. Jay permalink
    April 7, 2019 9:30 pm

    Actors Casting Call!
    Reality TV producer needs full time syncophants.
    Numerous positions available to be filled!

    Trump now has an:
    -acting Homeland Security Secretary
    -acting Defense Secretary
    -acting Interior Secretary
    -acting chief of staff
    -acting Wife.
    -and yes, an Acting President, unsuitable for the role

    • dhlii permalink
      April 7, 2019 10:21 pm

      i am not surprised. The Treatment Nielsen has recieved, by the left, by the press and by congress is reprehensible.

      She has been the victim of the common technique used by the left – including others here.

      Pretend that a disgreement over issue of law, fact or oppinion are moral differences and then accuse your oppoenent of being heartless, evil, vile.

      • Jay permalink
        April 8, 2019 10:31 am

        Duh- Trump forced her out.

        He has been complaining about her lack of toughness on border issues for weeks.
        And maybe that she recently said his Wall was a tactical ruse for other border priorities had something to do with getting rid of her as well.

        From NYT today:
        “The president called Ms. Nielsen at home early in the mornings to demand that she take action to stop migrants from entering the country, including doing things that were clearly illegal, such as blocking all migrants from seeking asylum. She repeatedly noted the limitations imposed on her department by federal laws, court settlements and international obligations.

        Those responses only infuriated Mr. Trump further. The president’s fury erupted in the spring of 2018 as Ms. Nielsen hesitated for weeks about whether to sign a memo ordering the routine separation of migrant children from their families so that the parents could be detained.”

        It would be refreshing if you examined ANYTHING from an objective POV and not distort it with your bullcrap partisan meat grinder propaganda.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 1:20 am

        I do not know whether she was “forced out” nor do you – and most importantly neither does NYT.

        Do you remember the part where if you get caught repeatedly telling lies, the price is that you are not to be believed.

        While a significant part of your assertions that Trump lied are false – and that significantly undermines your credibility. No one doubts that Trump’s relationship with the truth is typical for a politician. Absolutely Trump has a credibility problem.
        Which is why I do not much listen to what he says.

        But NYT has atleast as large a credibility problem – and their very reason for existing is supposed to be truth. NYT has a very serious credibility problem.

        I am no longer inclined to beleive an NYT story without a named source so that I can determine the credibility of the actual source.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 1:27 am

        Using court settlements as a back door to changing the law was a technique pioneered by Obama.

        It is unconstitutional. It is quiet litteraly judge made law.

        And it is a major problem at the moment.

        Yes, I suspect Trump demanded that Niehlsen violate the Flores Consent Decree,
        That is probably the only way to challenge its legitimacy.

        There is an enormous difference between two private parties in conflict reaching a binding agreement, and government reaching an agreement with a conflicting party that has the power of law. Congress did not pass such law, nor did they delegate that power to the courts.

        Nor is there any means of challenging a government consent decree except breaching it.

        BTW violating a consent decree is NOT illegal, it is just a breach of contract.

        The problem with government consent decrees – is that they are binding on future governments and one the people, who did not approve them, and they can not be challenged except by government.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 1:46 am

        “It would be refreshing if you examined ANYTHING from an objective POV and not distort it with your bullcrap partisan meat grinder propaganda.”

        Still libertarian, not republican, not conservative,

        I am offended by family separation, but Trump merely asked that the law be followed.
        If you do not like that – change the law.

        There are many important reasons that should be the ONLY resolution.
        One of those is that when we change the law we can consider many options.

        One of those would be to allow charging people with illegally crossing the board AND allow them to be detained with their children.

        That is immpermissible under current law – though I think Trump eventually capitulated.

        Yes, Niehlsen was between a rock – Trump, and a hard place – Congress.
        If she did what Trump wanted – “follow the law” then she would be pummeled by congress,
        If she did not she would be berated by Trump.

        Trump is the president – her boss. If he directs her to do something, she must either:
        Persuade him not to
        Do it.
        Resign.
        Don’t and risk getting fired

        There is not a 5th choice.
        If she beleives something Trump is asking is illegal or unconstitutional.
        that does not expand here choices.

        Any other arrangement gives anyone in government a veto over anything merely by claiming it is unconstitutional or illegal.

        If you can not persuade and you do not believe your position strongly enough to resign, then you just do it – or you are acting immorally.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 9, 2019 1:57 am

        A significant portion of the arguments I make are with regard to principles. They support Trump or reject him based on principles I have held for years.

        I have a great deal of respect for people who stick to the same principles – even when people they like violate them, or stick to them – even when they allow someone they do not like to do something they do not want.

        I do not like the KKK and I do not want them marching through my city.
        But liberty – including free speach is one of my principles, and absent a justification that passess muster, I must not merely allow the KKK to march through my city but help to assure they can.

        I am not the partisan here.

        Trump initially ignored DACA – because it was not the law. I gave him kudos for that.
        We should change the law, but Trump can not do that unilaterally.
        In the meantime we must follow it.

        Subsequently Trump has chosen to continue DACA even though it is lawless.
        I disagree with that, it just encourages further lawlessness.

        I want to see what is in the Mueller report as much as anyone.
        But the law does not permit the release of GJ material.
        We must follow the law.

        Though I find it interesting – you claim I am being partisan, because Trump does not want the Mueller report out. But all of Trump’s public comment has been get it out.
        You are free to beleive he is lying, but there is no evidence that he is, and I do not beleive you are telepathic.

        You are the only one allowing your emotions and partisanship to drive your opinions.

        My arguments flow from my principles.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 7, 2019 10:14 pm

      I do not think anyone cares that he is gay – except those who desparately want him to be some poster boy for the gay community.

      Lets focus on things that matter.

      Like his golf game ?

  86. dduck12 permalink
    April 7, 2019 10:07 pm

    Bronx Derangement Syndrome, BDS, is rampant. Which one is a lie: my father was born in the wonderful area in Germany called Der Brounx, or a croissant costs $7.00 at Laguardia Airport, or my southern drawl is not faked, I watched Gone With The Wind 27 times, or I don’t get involved with security clearances or wind mill medical side effects.

  87. Jay permalink
    April 8, 2019 2:46 pm

    Kirstjen Nielsen Resigned with only two days notice.
    Wednesday will be her last day, she said.
    Wonder what Trump said to her at their meeting yesterday to elicit so abrupt a departure?

    • dhlii permalink
      April 9, 2019 2:10 am

      I thought you said she was fired?

      We know the vile things democrats have said to her.

  88. dduck12 permalink
    April 8, 2019 3:14 pm

    Resign or I will fire you and ruin your future employment plans.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 9, 2019 2:13 am

      “Resign or I will fire you and ruin your future employment plans.”

      Logic is not your forte – getting fired by Trump would make her the darling of the left.
      It would assure her future jobs, and pretty much guarantee a lucrative book deal.

  89. dduck12 permalink
    April 8, 2019 9:25 pm

    Interesting: ” House GOP calls on Dems to bring in Mueller to testify

    By KYLE CHENEY

    04/08/2019 09:58 AM EDT

    Updated 04/08/2019 03:13 PM EDT
    Share on Facebook
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    Rep. Doug Collins, the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, called Monday for Democrats to immediately bring special counsel Robert Mueller to the Capitol to testify on his still-secret report on Russian contacts with President Donald Trump’s campaign — and whether Trump himself obstructed the probe.

    “If you seek both transparency and for the American public to learn the full contours of the Special Counsel’s investigation, public testimony from Special Counsel Mueller himself is undoubtedly the best way to accomplish this goal,” Collins wrote in a letter to the committee’s chairman, Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.).”
    https://www.politico.com/story/2019/04/08/house-gop-mueller-testify-1261116

    • April 8, 2019 10:10 pm

      dduck, this appears to be a good idea. However, I would wager a small bet that the narrative will be ” we agree with this, BUT…we have to wait for _______”…. ” we cant until______ “….etc. The longer nothing comes out to support Barrs decision and leaks continue to question his decision, this is a positive for democrats.

      For those like myself, I wsnt this overwith so we can address the real issues facing this country. For those on the left, there is only one issue this country is facing. Destroying Trump to regain the presidency.

    • April 8, 2019 10:24 pm

      Or why are you spending addicted liberals silent on unneeded and non productive government positions that after 2 years being vacant and no adverse reaction occurred from those being vacant?

      How many times have I commented on how many unneeded programs and duplicative programs we waste koney on. This just show that goes all the way to appointment level positions.

      And to provide some background, I complained about how much we wasted on senior management positions at our health system. The same thing that grew this from a CEO, CFO, Nursing Director and 2 VP’S to over 10 senior management positions with little growth in patient visits exist with government senior and middle management. Waste and silo kingdom building!

    • dhlii permalink
      April 9, 2019 2:41 am

      House democrats are not after the conclusions of the Mueller report.
      They are not after an understanding of how Mueller reached those conclusions.

      They are after the raw information – so that they can reinvestigate everything Mueller has investigated.

      I am prepared to call Comey corrupt and his whitewashing of Clinton and abuse of power.
      I am prepared to call Mueller’s actions corrupt – even if he did reach the correct conclusion – something obvious before he started.

      Are democrats prepared to call Mueller corrupt ?

      If not, then they much accept his conclusions.
      They wrote the law that created him.

    • April 9, 2019 1:58 pm

      Doug Collins makes the very valid point that, if the House wants to see the unredacted portions of the Mueller report, they should pass articles of impeachment and then all of the GJ and classified info can be subpoenaed for the hearings and trial of the President.

      However, since the Democrats know that the President has committed no crime, the act of impeaching him, and spending the next year further dividing and outraging the country would pretty much end any electoral prospects that they have in 2020. So, they will not do it, because they prefer to lie and insinuate for political purposes.

      I wonder how some of the Democrat freshman House members, who got elected on promises to fix health care and infrastructure, are feeling about the refusal of blue-state Dems like Nadler and Schiff continuing to sell their Russia collusion snake oil to the base, rather than legislate, or investigate important issues, such as the student loan crisis?

      • April 9, 2019 3:32 pm

        Priscilla, well I suspect Queen Nancy set them straight when they first arrived and other than AOC running off by herself on the socialist agenda, they knew that the “young” are to be seen and not heard. “Accept it or dont run in 18 months”!

      • Jay permalink
        April 9, 2019 5:03 pm

        You don’t have to commit an illegal ‘crime’ to justify impeachment, Priscilla.

        “The charge of high crimes and misdemeanors covers allegations of misconduct by officials, such as perjury of oath, abuse of authority, bribery, intimidation, misuse of assets, failure to supervise, dereliction of duty, unbecoming conduct, refusal to obey a lawful order, chronic intoxication, and tax evasion. Offenses by officials also include ordinary crimes, but perhaps with different standards of proof and punishment than for nonofficials, on the grounds that more is expected of officials by their oaths of office.” Wikipedia.

        And if via impeachment Trump’s taxes are released, and to his detriment they show multiple evidence of unsavory behaviors, you think that’s going to hurt Democrats?

      • April 9, 2019 11:41 pm

        Jay, the constitutional standard of “high crimes and misdemeanors” is a reasonably high one. I recognize that the Trump-deranged base of the Democrat Party will not be happy until articles of impeachment are drawn up against the President, but the rest of the American public will be pretty outraged if the House of Representatives wastes millions of dollars and lord knows how many months of divisive and inconclusive hearings, only to have the President emerge victorious, when the Senate acquits him. So, yes, I think it would hurt Democrats.

        And, if you want to continue believing that, somehow, Trump’s tax returns will be the silver bullet that will finally bring him down, by all means, believe it. But it’s just another rabbit hole.

        If Trump’s tax returns held any really damaging information, they would have leaked long ago.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 10, 2019 4:38 am

        “And if via impeachment Trump’s taxes are released, and to his detriment they show multiple evidence of unsavory behaviors, you think that’s going to hurt Democrats?”

        So it is OK to violate rights – if it does not hurt you politically ?

        Regardless of what wikipedia says what constitutes grounds for impeachment is determined first by the house, and then by the senate, and finally by voters who either support or oppose what congress did.

        Impeachment is NOT grounds for congress to acquire tax returns.

        Impeachment procedings are NOT carte blanche for congress to go lawless.

        The decision to release GJ material to the House impeachment committee was WRONG.
        The house is free to acquire the same information by subpeona’ing their own witnesses.
        The same is essentually true of the Mueller report.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 10, 2019 4:25 am

        The decision to allow GJ material to be provided to the Nixon impeachment committee was WRONG.

        The house could have gotten the same information by subpeoning witnesses and questioning them themselves.

        And they can do that NOW too.

        If after hearing Mueller confirm “there are no witches to be found”, Schiff wishes to keep up the witch hunt he may do so.

        I am almost entirely in favor of government transparency.

        But:
        I think there is an executive priviledge that precludes providing anyone (under MOST circumstances) with communications between themselves and the president.

        I think that pretty much everything associated with a criminal investigation that does not result in a prosecution may not be released to almost anyone.

        Those are it. Everything else congress should be allowed to have.

        I do not as an example think that National Security is EVER a justification for refusing to provide information to congress (democrat or republican), Congress members get security clearances, and I think that sitting on specific committees with oversite responsibilities is sufficient “need to know”.
        I would also prosecute congressmen who leak classified information.

  90. dduck12 permalink
    April 8, 2019 9:37 pm

    Watch out Trump: “Washington (CNN)Lobbyist Sam Patten provided “substantial assistance” to special counsel Robert Mueller and several other ongoing investigations, federal prosecutors said Monday, paving the way for him to potentially avoid jail time at his sentencing this week.”
    “For his part, Patten asked for probation instead of prison. His lawyers said he never intended to cover up anything related to Russian meddling in the 2016 campaign. When he pleaded guilty, Patten admitted that he illegally funneled money from a Russia-friendly oligarch to Trump’s inauguration fund, and that he lied about it to a congressional committee.
    “His crimes were not motivated by greed or a desire to conceal relevant information from the American public or to aid or cover up any potential interference with the 2016 Presidential election,” they wrote. “To the contrary, Mr. Patten’s decisions in this case stemmed primarily from a desire to accommodate his clients’ requests and to present himself in the best possible light after unexpectedly finding himself a subject of the Russian interference investigation.”Washington (CNN)Lobbyist Sam Patten provided “substantial assistance” to special counsel Robert Mueller and several other ongoing investigations, federal prosecutors said Monday, paving the way for him to potentially avoid jail time at his sentencing this week.”
    https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/08/politics/sam-patten-sentencing/

    • dhlii permalink
      April 9, 2019 2:45 am

      If you can read your own quotes, Mueller is saying Patten commited no underlying crime.
      That all they have on him is process crimes.

      Prosecutions of process crimes – even threats of prosecutions of process crimes should almost never be permitted absent an underlying crime.

      Put differently “you can not obstruct injustice”.

  91. Jay permalink
    April 8, 2019 9:38 pm

    More then 2 years now into Limp Dick Donald’s presidency (he just called Nadler Fat Larry, so turnaround’s fair play) he hasn’t yet filled 40% of the administration jobs important enough to require Senate confirmation?

    Why are all you strick conservative Constitutionalists silent on this unconstitutional behavior?

    • April 8, 2019 10:34 pm

      I tried responding to Jay and Word Press posted it under dduck comment. So will try to link it to Jays comment. Too many comments with too many links and Word Press has a mental brain fart.

      So the comment was in response to strict constutionalist:
      Or why are you spending addicted liberals silent on unneeded and non productive government positions that after 2 years being vacant and no adverse reaction occurred from those being vacant?

      How many times have I commented on how many unneeded programs and duplicative programs we waste koney on. This just show that goes all the way to appointment level positions.

      And to provide some background, I complained about how much we wasted on senior management positions at our health system. The same thing that grew this from a CEO, CFO, Nursing Director and 2 VP’S to over 10 senior management positions with little growth in patient visits exist with government senior and middle management. Waste and silo kingdom building!

      • Jay permalink
        April 9, 2019 5:09 pm

        You want to ignore laws in use?

        If your assumption is jobs requiring Senate conformation are unnecessary, first change the law to eliminate those positions from consideration.

      • April 9, 2019 5:38 pm

        First, we need to find another open subject because all the dang videos and meme’s has my system taking minutes to load this tread.

        Now in response. You state “If your assumption is jobs requiring Senate conformation are unnecessary, first change the law to eliminate those positions from consideration.”

        Good try turning words I use around on me and try to dump them on me. But, who the hell has been the only one commenting here on cutting goverment spending AND GIVING SPECIFIC PROPOSALS ON HOW TO DO IT?

        How many times have I said the government needs to balance the budget AND use zero based budgeting to justify every dollar that is spent?

        So if I were in Washington, I would be doing everything I could to zero base a budget and CHANGE THE LAW! But I am not there and no one there is worried about waste.

        And when you zero base a budget, you find huge amounts the first year to cut and each year for about 5 more until you are about a lean as possible.No one identifies all the waste the first year because some thingvare harder to ID.

        And please show which law says the president.must fill all positions. In early 2017, Trump said in an interview with Forbes Magazine, “”I’m generally not going to make a lot of the appointments that would normally be — because you don’t need them,”

        So he is doing what he said he would do 24+ months ago!

      • dhlii permalink
        April 10, 2019 4:41 am

        “You want to ignore laws in use?

        If your assumption is jobs requiring Senate conformation are unnecessary, first change the law to eliminate those positions from consideration.”

        I do not understand your comment.

        What law is being ignored ?

        Where did Ron claim that Senate confirmation was unnecescary for those positions that currently require it ?

      • dhlii permalink
        April 10, 2019 4:49 am

        The constitution does not require the president to nominate anyone.

        Further that would be silly. If the president was required to nominate people, hoe could just nominate people who would not be approved.

        It is always stupid to craft law that is unenforceable.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 9, 2019 2:50 am

      “he hasn’t yet filled 40% of the administration jobs important enough to require Senate confirmation?”

      Kudo’s to Trump.
      40% less bureaucrats

      Regardless Democrats have been obstructing appointments by requiring the full 30hrs of floor debate time for every nominee. If you work that out it would take years to confirm them all and nothing else would get done.

      Trump and McConnell and Grassley have worked together to focus on Judicial nominees.
      Trump has figured out how to run the executive with less apointees.

      I think that is a good idea.
      We should permanently eliminate most of these positions.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 9, 2019 2:54 am

      “Why are all you strick conservative Constitutionalists silent on this unconstitutional behavior?”

      Here is Article II Section 2.

      Where does it say the president is REQUIRED ?

      He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.

  92. dhlii permalink
    April 9, 2019 3:14 am

    Some interesting thoughts on localism and community – that are ultimately on diversity, racism and immigration.

  93. dhlii permalink
    April 9, 2019 3:36 am

    Interesting observations on
    the psychological components of ideology – libertarians BTW tend to be open and conscientous.
    Walls
    Descrimination

  94. dhlii permalink
    April 9, 2019 4:58 am

    In case you thing it is conservatives that are seeking to block the unreacted Mueller report.
    https://amgreatness.com/2019/04/07/democrats-will-regret-not-walking-away-when-they-could/

    Everyone I know who is concerned about dumping the mueller report on the public, is not a conservative but a civil libertarian.
    Conservatives and republicans are trying to figure out how to legally get the mueller report out to the public.

  95. dhlii permalink
    April 9, 2019 5:55 am

    Isn’t this the guy who told all of us that if the Russians come trying to provide dirt on your political opponent, that decent americans run away and call the FBI ?

    This was a hoax – but Schiff did not know that

  96. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    April 9, 2019 8:44 am

    The hard work of left wing cranks and right wing cranks has not hurt Biden. Perhaps there is some common sense left in the world. If something more serious than hair smelling and photoshopping by right wing scumbags comes out by credible people I will evaluate it seriously. Up till now, there has been nothing that is more than hypersensitive hyperventilation. If Biden offends millennial sensibilities then Great! They need to be offended. They will vote against trump no matter who runs.

    If meetoo is going to be a big deal in 2020, again Great! the serial proud sexual predator trump will be its first and most vulnerable target.
    https://www.politico.com/story/2019/04/08/joe-biden-poll-2020-democrats-1261926

    • dhlii permalink
      April 10, 2019 3:55 am

      Cut the crap.

      While I am sure that someone out there somewhere has photo-shopped Biden at some time.
      He is not facing attacks because some photo no one has ever seen was photo-shopped.

      Real women have come forward and complained.
      There is tons of video.

      We can debate what the rules should be for physical contact with people you know, know well, or are intimate with.

      It is improper to touch someone you do not know without there permission.

      Is it less significant if it is not sexual – maybe.

      It is hard to say why Biden does what he does. I do not know whether his conduct towards women or children is sexually charged for him.
      I am disturbed that he appears to like flashing female secret service agents.
      I am not so sure that there is not something sexual in it for him.

      But fundimentally that does not mattered.

      I have noted before that my wife was sexually assaulted. One of the first things you learn afterwords is that sexual assaults – are not about sex, they are about POWER.

      That should be obvious to anyone who has contemplated Clinton’s conduct.

      As the women in the slate article notes, She had an uneasy feeling at the time, and later observation confirmed, that Biden’s actions diminished her – they were about power.
      The effect was to suggest she could not stand on her own, tell her story on her own.
      That she was less of a person and needed Biden’s presence to be more.

      Nor is this about who votes for who.

      The false claims of #metoo have been damaging. This is a tricky area.
      I do not know what to beleive regarding Ford as an example,
      Nor do I know what to beleive regarding Trump – beyond that I am going to be careful about going beyond the proveable facts.

      I can vote based on my doubts – but I can not make accusations based on mere doubts.

      At the same time #metoo exposes serious problems in our society.

      I would never dream of treating a women the way Trump brags.
      I would never dream of presuming that I had the right to touch a stranger in the way Biden does. Or the way Franken did.

      But lots of people do. It is possible that in some cases that is welcome.
      It is still wrong if it was not.

      The conduct we KNOW trump has engaged in with women is WRONG.
      The Conduct Trump has bragged about is WORSE.
      The conduct others have accused him of is WORSE Still.

      AND Biden’s conduct is wrong too.

      These things are not equal. An accusation is a reason for suspicion, it is not a known fact.
      Trump’s bragging – even if false reflects a demeaning attitude towards women.
      Trump’s proven conduct is less consequential than his alleged conduct or his brags, but it is still wrong.
      As is Biden’s.

      Are unable to grasp that no one has the right to any control of another person’s body without their consent ?

      The fact that Biden has not raped anyone is not a justification.

      If you want to debate who is the lessor evil between Biden and Trump – OK lets do that.

      But quit pretending that Biden’s conduct is acceptable. It is not.

      Is it common – possibly, but that does not make it acceptable.

      Biden apologized. Mostly his apology was clueless, and contained too much self justification.

      Has what conduct SHOULD be acceptable changed ? NO!.
      But Biden is correct that even though his conduct has always been wrong, it was deemed acceptable for much of human existance.

      Regardless, Biden appears to be trying to understand and correct his own conduct.
      I am not sure that he can do that.
      But he is still doing better than you are.

      Trump BTW also appologized for his access hollywood comments.
      You can beleive or disbeleive his apology, but he still made it, just like Biden.

      What about you ?

      Or do you still think that it is OK for people to smell the hair of others or touch them in a variety of ways without permission ?

      https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2019/04/joe-biden-lilly-jay-touch-essay.html

    • dhlii permalink
      April 10, 2019 3:59 am

      RCP appears to have Biden down between 4-6 points as a result of this. There is no trend line graph so it is hard to tell.

      But why are you fixated on polls ?

      If the dubious allegations that Trump raped a 13 yr old were proven true tomorow, and his poll numbers did not change – would that make the conduct acceptable ?

      Polls are a poor measure of what people think, but they are often the measure we have.
      They are not a measure of what is right or wrong. Or what is true or false.

  97. vermontadowhatiwanta permalink
    April 9, 2019 8:48 am

    Helping their mafia boss trump conceal his taxes: the hill the new GOP is ready to die on. What a joke. I don’t think the trump position on this issue is going to resonate sympathetically with anyone but brainwashed diehards.

    Making a big deal of concealing the finances of a sleazy POTUS is a loser of an issue.

    • dhlii permalink
      April 10, 2019 4:06 am

      “Helping their mafia boss trump conceal his taxes: the hill the new GOP is ready to die on. What a joke. I don’t think the trump position on this issue is going to resonate sympathetically with anyone but brainwashed diehards.

      Making a big deal of concealing the finances of a sleazy POTUS is a loser of an issue.”

      What you think is irrelevant, what you feel is irrelevant.

      You do not have a right to know whatever you want about someone else.
      Anyone, not just presidents. Not just Trump.

      Trump’s taxes are NOT being concealed – you have no more right to them than to anything else you want to know about anyone else but do not.

      This is not an “issue”. It is about a right.
      Rights are not subject to your opinion.
      That is close to the definition of a right. A liberty you have even if the majority would deprive you of it.

      If candidates wish to provide their tax returns as part of running for office – fine.
      If they don’t – you can express how you feel about that with your vote.

      But you do not seem to grasp that that you are not entitled to know whatever you want about others just because you want to.

      Not Trump, not anyone.

  98. dduck12 permalink
    April 9, 2019 3:30 pm

    His NY State tax returns may provide clues to what’s in the Fed. return and raise the call for them all. Meantime force the IRS to admit or deny if he is under audits.

    • April 9, 2019 6:32 pm

      dduck, I also do not believe a state can require someone in a federal position to do this, but I could be wrong. They could require state elected officials to do that. But A federal position would most likely be federal laws, and even those state laws may not pass the 4th amendment test.

      • April 9, 2019 7:35 pm

        Ron, four years before he was president.

      • April 9, 2019 8:46 pm

        I think the ones that really should be worried are the federal and state IRS employees. They have had his records for years. They can review every penny in those returns. They can review every transaction leading to revenues or expenses. They have the expertise to uncover anything illegal.

        So if those returns go to congress after two+ years of congress saying there has to be something illegal in them and the IRS people did not find anything, but a bunch of overpaid, unqualified career politicians do find something, those IRS state and federal employees, supervisors and district managers need to be looking for another job.

        Or this could be anorher ruse by our sociopathic ( liberals view)in luring democrats into his web, waiting until election year, saying the audit is completed enough to release the returns, and doing so where it pulls the rug from under the democrats and making them look like fools, just like Russian collusion, just before the election to cement the witch hunt drama.

        I dont think that to be the case, but seeing Trump manipulate people now, I have no doubt he could do that.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 10, 2019 5:01 am

        Is there anyone who beleives that Trump personally crafted his tax returns – rather than an army of lawyers and accountants ?

        Is there anyone who beleives those lawyers and accountants did not do everything LEGALLY possible to reduce Trump’s taxes ?

        Is there anyone who beleives that myriads of people at the State DOR and the IRS did not go over Trump’s returns with a fine tooth comb ?

        Who in their right mind beleive that Jerry Nadler and his staff are going to find evidence of crimes when neither the IRS nor NY DOR was able to ?

        BTW beyond the “Argh Trump!!! There MUST be something there” nonsense,
        what is the evidence of anything actually illegal ?

        The left is echoing Levanti Berria – “show me the man, and I will show you the crime”.

        We do not pick the people we want to “get” and investigate until we find a crime.

        All investigations must start with a credible allegation of crime.

        If we lose that foundation we are no different from the USSR or PRC or the NAZI’s.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 10, 2019 4:54 am

        I beleive NY is trying to force Trump’s NY State Tax return to be released.

        State Tax returns substantially duplicate federal returns.

        My guess is that NY will fail for numerous reasons.

        Most state constitutions have the same provisions as the federal constitution, and bills of attainder are unconstitutional.

        The bill of rights applies to the states.

        It is likely that NY has laws very similar to federal laws.

        Generally when something has never occurred before, there is good reason to be extremely dubious about it.

    • April 12, 2019 9:52 pm

      dduck. In further research I have found that the Chairman of the Ways and Means committee can request tax returns on any individual.

      USCODE-2011-title26-SubtitleF-Chap61-SubchapterB-Sec6103 Or (IRS Code 6103, page 3163
      “(f) Disclosure to Committees of Congress
      (1) Committee on Ways and Means, Committee on Finance, and Joint Committee on Taxation.Upon written request from the chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives, the chairman of the Committee on Finance of the Senate, or the chairman of the Joint Committee on Taxation, the Secretary shall furnish such committee with any return or return information specified in such request, except that any return or return information which can be associated with, or otherwise identify, directly or indirectly, a particular taxpayer shall be furnished to such committee only when sitting in closed executive session unless such taxpayer otherwise consents in writing to such disclosure”.

      And further review of Section 6103 appears to ban anyone from disclosing any information obtained from said tax returns under penalty of law.

      So my uneducated legal mind has no idea what this could or could not allow if the House Ways and Means Chairman found anything in closed executive session. Seems like they could only disclose something to the treasury secretary, but even that is not in the written code. I also have questions if the bozos in congress would even know what they were looking at, because they most likely are no tax CPA’s or tax attorneys on the committee.

      But given this info, they might be able to get the returns after a court hearing on the subject.

      https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/USCODE-2011-title26/pdf/USCODE-2011-title26-subtitleF-chap61-subchapB-sec6103.pdf

      • dduck12 permalink
        April 12, 2019 10:23 pm

        Re tax returns: Thanks Ron. This afternoon on CNN there was a journalist “tax expert” that cited an IRS rule that says no IRS employee can stop a request and if so a fine pf $5,000 and or jail time may apply.
        (I was on a treadmill so that is a half-assed version.) His name is David Cay Johnson

      • April 12, 2019 11:46 pm

        https://www.salon.com/2019/04/12/david-cay-johnston-treasury-has-no-legal-choice-but-to-hand-over-trumps-tax-returns-to-congress/

        dduck, found it.

        What I dont know is what they can do with the info after getting it when it is very clear in section 6103 that any information on the returns have to be held in confidence.

        Can you imagine 20-25 democrats on the committee seeing something detrimental to Trump and not leaking it, thus opening up another investigation by the FBI to find the leaker.I see no way that info would ever stay confidential.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 13, 2019 3:11 am

        I think Mr. Cay is reading the law and the rules wrong.

        First I would make clear that Rules – whether those of the IRS or any other agency are directly authorized by law or they are meaningless.

        While the courts have vascillated about the deference given to executive rulemakers in terms of the latitude they get reguard conforming they rules to the law, there is absolutely ZERO doubt that a rule without a law that supports it has ZERO authority.

        The only law I am aware of authorizing the release of Tax returns is that one that keeps getting cited. Mr. Cay is the FIRST person I have heard that claims it has EVER been used in 100 years. Most certainly congress does NOT routinely request or get tax returns.

        As we have discussed here Nixon VOLUNTARILY provided his. No one demanded it.

        Absolutely IRS employees can be fined and jailed. But those threats are in the rules about keeping tax returns confidential NOT about those providing them to congress.

        I would be completely shocked if Mnuchin was not in far greater legal jeophardy if he released ANYONE’s taxes to congress than if he witheld them.

        I would also point out, that Congress has near zero law enforment authority.
        Nor do the courts. Whatever the law might purportedly be or mean, the FIRST voice on that is the Executive Branch – starting with Mnuchin and ending with Barr.

        I do not like Barr. I think he is just another statist. But thus far he has been scrupulous about the law.

        Congress can declare Mnuchin in contempt – as they did Holder.
        Did you see Holder Frog marched to the Congressional jail ?

        Congress can rant until hell freezes that something is illegal, then can even be entirely right.
        But no one will go to jail without the US AG signing off.

        If Mnuchin does not agree with Congress on the law – they can hold him in contempt, or they can refer him to Barr for prosecution. If Barr does not agree with congress on the law, Congress would have to go to court, the entire mess would likely go to SCOTUS, and I do not think you are winning.

        The 1920’s law is about as close as I have ever seen to a “bill of attainder”, and if it survived a facial challenge, a congressional demand for “Trump’s tax return” would trivially fail as an “as applied constitutional violation”.

        But I do not think that will happen anyway. Congress is more likely to go to court to enforce its subpeona – Congress can not directly file a criminal complaint. The courts could hold Mnuchin in contempt – that is if Congress is lucky enough to prevail. But even a contempt finding will not likely occur until all appeals are exhausted – i.e. SCOTUS.

        The only way the house gets Trump’s tax return quickly is if Trump decides to capitulate.

        I am not handicapping Trump. But I think his wisest choice is to “set up” the house.

        As I offered before – say “yeah sure fine, you can look at my tax return in a closed session without staff, you can not make copies and if anyone leaks it I am going to direct the AG to prosecute fully”.

        I am quite dubious of Cay’s claim that not providing Congress a tax return is a crime.
        I have zero doubt that leaking one to the public is a crime.

        I also think Trump should provide the house his tax return, because I think the odds of keeping it secret all the way to 2020 are slim. If it is going to leak anyway – get it over with now, and do so in the way that will be least damaging to you and most damaging to those going after you.

        I think those of you so eager to get Trump’s tax return do not grasp the counter negative impact of its getting leaked politically.

        Democrats DO NOT need more evidence of behaving lawlessly.

        It is looking increasingly like the next 2 years are going to be news of the investigation of the investigation into Trump. That is bad for democrats.
        Do you really want criminally leaking tax returns added to the list of investigations?

        Most of us fully grasp that the political use of tax returns is CRIMINAL and CORRUPT.

      • dhlii permalink
        April 13, 2019 2:44 am

        “Re tax returns: Thanks Ron. This afternoon on CNN there was a journalist “tax expert” that cited an IRS rule that says no IRS employee can stop a request and if so a fine pf $5,000 and or jail time may apply.
        (I was on a treadmill so that is a half-assed version.) His name is David Cay Johnson”

        Can you provide more detail
        First I am not clear what you are saying.

        The distribution of tax returns within government is the most tightly regulated aspect of govenrment. Tax returns are not technically “classified” there is no national security issue but they are near absolutely private.

        The 1920’s law that Ron cited is the ONLY law I am aware of that allows sharing tax returns outside the IRS.

        It is not particularly easy for DOJ and FBI to gain access to a tax return. I am not sure that they do not have to go to court to do so.

        We know that during the Obama administration tax returns were being leaked tot he press.

        We are near certain that was Lerhner providing them to people in DOJ who were then leaking them.

        That was illegal, but it was not absolutely proven how the tax returns were getting from the IRS to the press.

        The House provided a criminal referal to Holder – who