Friday, February 2, 2018

David P. Goldman — Trump triumphs with release of House FBI memo

The House Intelligence Committee memo on abuse of power by the Federal Bureau of Investigation appeared just after 12:00 pm Eastern time, and American political life never will be the same. The House Republicans make a persuasive if not prima facie case that senior FBI officials used a fake dossier paid for by the Democrats to get a court order for electronic surveillance of the Trump campaign. If the charge sticks, America will have a real life instance of the sort of scenario found in pulp thrillers—a rogue intelligence agency operating in the darkness and abusing its power to manipulate elections.
This is political plutonium.
"Political plutonium" indeed.

Asia Times
Trump triumphs with release of House FBI memo
David P. Goldman

Also

Sic Semper Tyrannis
The FBI and CIA Failed Coup Against Trump Unravels
Publius Tacitus

also

Consortium News
Nunes Memo Reports Crimes at Top of FBI & DOJ
Ray McGovern

also
Given all that, I imagine that i) those believing that the Trump collusion story is made-up nonsense, and the President is a victim of a conspiracy of Democrats and their allies in the ‘deep state’ will feel vindicated; while ii) supporters of the collusion theory will see the release as further evidence that Republicans are just trying to divert attention because they have something to hide. The primary result, therefore, will simply be a hardening of positions on both sides and an accentuation of the already sharp divisions in American politics. In short, the show will go on.
Irrussianality
My thoughts on that memo
Paul Robinson | Professor, Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Ottawa

This is far from over. It's only the beginning of the dénouement. Both sides are lining up their positions and the result portends to divide America along a gigantic fault line with the tectonic plates violently striking each other.

Example.

"Nothing-burger."

VOX
The Nunes memo is a dud
Zach Beauchamp

Also

Putin did it.
Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) said Friday that President Trump's attacks on key U.S. institutions are tearing at the seams of the country's democracy in the same vein as Russian President Vladimir Putin.
"If you look at the institutions that the president has attacked – the Department of Justice, the FBI, the judiciary and the media – I mean, I would argue that all of those institutions are part of what makes this country free," Speier said on CNN.

"And the democracy is going to start to erode, and you got Vladimir Putin there smiling. I mean, it's like he gave Donald Trump the script."...

The Hill
Democrat: It’s like Putin gave Trump a ‘script’
Max Greenwood

Also

NYRB does a hit job on Vladimir Putin. Not quite "Putin is Hitler," but close.

New York Review of Books
Putin: From Oligarch to Kleptocrat
Ruth May | professor of global business in the Satish & Yasmin Gupta College of Business at the University of Dallas, and a King fellow of the university

Ruth May is behind this one, too.

Verified Politics
Dallas News Just Published A Bombshell Report Linking Trump, McConnell, Ryan to Putin
Benjamin Locke

Strong on innuendo and inference, weak on evidence. 




30 comments:

Matt Franko said...

Tom idk I think you might have to be a lawyer to appreciate what was released today... it seems procedural.... somewhat anti-climactic....

idk why Nunes had to go down to the Old Executive Office Building to look at something last year (where I assume the NSC SCIF is) and now all we get is FBI/DOJ malfeasance...

Why would he have to go to the NSC SCIF for FBI data? Seems like he would have had to have gone to FBI bldg to get that...

I would have rather see published some sample intercepted unmasked Trump Campaign comms between eg Kellyanne Conway and eg the Trump Pennsylvania campaign coordinator or something like that if it exists...

Maybe that type of stuff has to be saved for the trials???

Tom Hickey said...

There is zero chance that the public will ever learn "the truth" based on evidence. If there were evidence it would already have been leaked. Same with just about everything the deep state touches and says "Trust us."

Perhaps I have not made it clear enough yet. The takeaway from all this is political polarization in the US amounting to a constitutional crisis. The US is now unable to effectively govern itself owing to this fissure because the parties are living in different universes. There is no common ground on which to debate, let alone compromise.

The US is now in engaged in a classic power struggle between to major factors, represented by the two parties, and each of the parties is also involved in a power struggle between the establishment and populist faction.

There is no way to tell how this going to shake out over time, as far as I can tell. It's really just getting started in earnest and the knives have come out. There will be "blood on the floor," figuratively speaking.

We are in an "interregnum" in Gramsci's sense.



https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Antonio_Gramsci

Tom Hickey said...

For some reason the quote did not show up.

La crisi consiste appunto nel fatto che il vecchio muore e il nuovo non può nascere: in questo interregno si verificano i fenomeni morbosi piú svariati.
The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear.
Quaderni del carcere, « Ondata di materialismo» e « crisi di autorità », volume I, quaderno 3, p. 311, written circa 1930
English translation Selections from the Prison Notebooks, “Wave of Materialism” and “Crisis of Authority” (NY: International Publishers), (1971), pp. 275-276.
Prison Notebooks Volume II, Notebook 3, 1930, (2011 edition) SS-34, Past and Present 32-33

Noah Way said...

each of the parties is also involved in a power struggle between the establishment and populist faction

Which faction would that be? It's most certainly not Democrats or Republicans, shadow government or deep state, MIC or Wall St.

Matt Franko said...

There are populist factions in both parties...

Trump in GOP and Bernie in Democrat....

Trump won because Dems rigged it for Hillary...

Tom Hickey said...

There are two parties, and most everyone is lined up in that order, especially politically, where party affiliation is vital in networking.

Within each of the parties there are two major factions, the establishment and rank and file or grassroots.

The people that are not affiliated in any way simply don't count as players. There are a lot of these and they have opted out for a variety of reasons, from lack of interest to disgust.

Politics is about power, it's distribution and application. The two parties are the major cohorts and the principle sub-cohorts are the factions that make them up, which can be roughly divided into two - those interested in extending the status quo and those dissatisfied with the status quo who want change.

There are also many sub-factions and intersection based on identity, affiliations, networks, etc.

Presently, the two parties are on completely different pages, as said, "inhabit different universes" with different "facts."

Each of the parties is also going through a civil war to determine control.

Because of the distance separating these factions, compromise is pretty much impossible and it's become a zero-sum game.

This means that whoever wins a round, the outcome is rejected by the losers as illegitimate.

The US is becoming toxic since a large part of the population contests the legitimacy of the government, whichever side emerges victorious in any situation. And this looks to go on for the foreseeable future, with no resolution in sight.

Further complicating the situation is the perceived need to demonize opposition, whether it is domestic or foreign, which means that only victory in conflict is an acceptable outcome. This guarantees viewing everything as a conflict with no resolution other than the outcome of confrontation.

The crazy is escalating.

Tom Hickey said...

There are populist factions in both parties...

Trump in GOP and Bernie in Democrat....

Trump won because Dems rigged it for Hillary...


And there is more party discipline on the right than on the left.

Neil Wilson said...

It's exactly the same across the world I think.

Here in the UK the Tories are split in two, as are Labour. Each has half of the amulet, but they can't accept that the other side has the other half of the amulet - because the parties occupy different universes and never the twain shall meet. The internal struggles are arguing over half the picture.

It's got all the hallmarks of religious factions who get more and more concentrated around central ideas and groupthink - with detractors expelled.

I've no idea where this ends, but it doesn't look good.

Matt Franko said...

Maybe it ends where the populist cohorts adopt cryptos to get around the corrupt cohort...

Tom Hickey said...

Ian Welsh
Do NOT Use Bitcoin Assuming It Is Anonymous

As Yves Smith says, "Prosecution futures."

John said...

Being the dumb schmuck that he is, Trump may well be considering firing Mueller and all the other Republicans he himself put into positions of power to subvert the FBI investigation. Trump's starting to panic - and he has every reason to. Anyone who had any sense knew there wasn't anything to the Kremlin innuendos. It's always been about money laundering. Look at the people Mueller has on his team investigating Trump and his henchmen. They're all money laundering experts. Not that anyone with any sense needed Bannon to corroborate all this, but he himself let the cat out of the bag when he said that his sense was that this is all about Russian money laundering.

Mueller has been content to let the MSM dummies out there think what they like about the Kremlin and Putin, but Mueller and his team from the get go have been zeroing in on the money laundering. Trump is starting to sweat and Mueller hasn't even interviewed his inner circle or been interrogated himself by experienced Federal agents yet. Forensic accountants are going to be Trump's downfall.

Looks increasingly like he's fucked and he knows it. I saw Trump on television earlier and he looked as if he had just went into cardiac arrest - the look Nixon had before he resigned. Get ready for Trump's resignation - on health grounds obviously. The only downside is that Pence makes Trump look relatively sane. Trump's guilty as hell but that isn't the point. So have many others and they've been rewarded. The deep state has sent out an extremely powerful message: play ball and you'll be well rewarded; be another dumb schmuck like Trump and we'll eat you alive before you can say "Ivanka, daddy wants to play our secret game".

Noah Way said...

Trump won because ... Hillary

There, fixed it for you.

Noah Way said...

The problem with dumping Trump is that they may break something. The biggest fear is civil unrest, and they may invoke by rash action. In the meantime any leverage on Trump is being used to assure compliance with the shadow government / deep state agenda. As for money laundering, they're all doing it, just look at the Clinton Foundation and its giant Teflon shield. The Clintons are part of the system, Trump isn't. Selective prosecution is the way they keep people in line. Carrots for falling in line, criminal prosecution (or worse) for not. Imagine what they would have done if to Bernie if he had won ...

John said...

Noah Way: "The problem with dumping Trump is that they may break something. The biggest fear is civil unrest, and they may invoke by rash action."

Absolutely, but it could be that no matter how many times the deep state slap Trump in the face he's such a stupid bastard that the message just doesn't register and instead he goes away thinking that there's too much alcohol in his aftershave. Enough is enough, the deep staters are shouting, and it's time to dump the obese cretin and deal with the Trumptards if and when that problem arises. Anyway, if Trump resigns and Pence paints himself orange 2.0 rather than the sick religious psycho that he is, the deep state may get away with it. Everyone should be happy. Trump made America great again in record time. All America's problems were solved and he should be allowed to play those private, very secret games that only he and Ivanka are allowed to play together.

Matt Franko said...

“here is more party discipline on the right than on the left.”

There is more democracy on the right... plenty of discipline on the left all the delegates were told to vote for Hillary and they did that’s discipline...

John said...

Matt: "There is more democracy on the right..."

Leaving aside all the surreal hilarity in the above comment and the conflation of left with Hillary in particular (a centre-right Republican on all things but identity issues and thus magically becomes a Marxist-Leninist) or the Democrats more generally (a centre-right political party), then Trump should have nothing to fear from all the Republicans who are investigating him. As far as I know, from Mueller down through all the recent Trump nominations for the DoJ and FBI they are ALL GOPers. Let's see where this rightwing heralded democracy lands Trump. Mueller and team have got everyone so far to flip and sing like canaries. Trump's going down like piss from a blonde bimbo falling on an obese orange cretin. You can't blame Trump. How else to celebrate untold amounts of dirty Russian money but with blonde bimbos and urine? Discuss...

Matt Franko said...

Well then where is the "real" left?

If it is not Dems or GOP then that leaves about 10% of people remaining.... if the "real" left is only 10% of population then in a democracy/representative govt they are not going to get a lot of their policies implemented by govt...

Matt Franko said...

Look at the yuge rallies for Trump and he ended up winning... that is democracy on the right... Trump did not rig the GOP primary elections he had to fight it out... and then he had a good strategy for the general election too... ie populist-right...

He pulled it off...

After 10 years of not optimally run war and tepid economy at best the US was ripe for a populist... GOP elected theirs to stand for the general election meanwhile Dems rigged it for someone associated with the previous 10 years of Keystone Kops warfighting and tepid economy...

Tom Hickey said...

The Dem establishment was able to stop Bernie, but lost the election for it.

The GOP establishment was unable to stop Trump, and he was able to take the most electoral votes owing to the peculiar construction of the US electoral system, even though he lost the popular vote.

Matt Franko said...

That was Trumps strategy Tom, he never even went to California waste of time.. btw to this day idt Trump has ever set foot in California...

Thing is the Dems are broke again:

http://theweek.com/speedreads/752743/dnc-reportedly-dead-broke-rnc-nearly-40-million

they never have any munnie.... they represent the cohort with not much munnie...

so last time the Clintons came in with 10s of $Ms but it came with terms... ie Hillary had to be the candidate....

so they are now right back where they were ie dead broke and will have to be stuck with a candidate with bazillions who will dictate specific terms again...

Tom Hickey said...

This is the problem with Western liberalism politically. Under representative "democracy," bourgeois liberalism is guaranteed to prevail, meaning that class, power, and wealth will determine election outcomes.

Why did DJT win in the swing states? "Russia"? Maybe not.

TRNN
How Did Trump Win? Follow the Dark Money
Aaron Maté interviews Thomas Ferguson, Political Science professor at the University of Massachusetts Boston

Matt Franko said...

I'm maybe not a good one to ask I voted for Trump's predecessor Pat Buchanan as far back as the 90's.... so this has been a long time coming for me but finally we're here..

Munnie didnt have anything to do with it... Hillary could have spent a $bazillion I wouldnt have voted for her in a million years...

FD some days now I have to pinch myself things are starting to go so good finally from my POV...

Still a lot of way to go though....

John said...

Matt: "Look at the yuge rallies for Trump and he ended up winning... that is democracy on the right... "

So what? There were bigger rallies for Hillary and mindbogglingly gigantic ones for Obummer.

Anyway, that's not what Trump was saying at the time, was he? He was blabbing about rigged elections and FBI meddling and any other stupid thing that came into his head. If there was any FBI meddling, it was the other way! If anything, Comey helped Trump by making Hillary look like less than squeaky clean, when in fact anyone with a brain has known for decades that she's a dirty bitch. And then Trump fired Comey because the investigation into Hillary was - wait for it - unfair to her! This stuff is impossible to make up, yet plenty lap it up every day like it's ice cream.

In any case, you've dodged the issue. If Trump is so fond of democracy and the rule of law then he has nothing to fear from all those he has appointed to the investigation. For those who missed it, THE INVESTIGATION IS BEING CARRIED OUT NOT ONLY BY REPUBLICANS BUT BY TRUMP APPOINTEES.

So what's behind the Trump orchestrated smear campaign of the investigations, why the undermining of these investigations at every turn and why the constant threats to find a way to rid himself of Mueller and anyone who is investigating him? Is it because they're tired of winning? Yeah, that must be it. Or could it be that Trump has been involved in a whole load of illegal stuff - the kind of stuff that will not only end his presidency but also his business. The stuff they're digging up must be so appalling that even Trump appointees can't turn a blind eye.

Matt: "...some days now I have to pinch myself things are starting to go so good finally from my POV..."

And those anti-American bastards at the DoJ and FBI are going to ruin it all by bringing down a money launderer! Boo-hoo.

Anyway, Mueller sounds Mexican to me. And I know for a fact he changed it from Munez-Linares, but he can't fool me. I want to see the long form of his birth certificate. Munez-Linares has a vested interest, you know, being a Mexican. He's probably a rapist and wants more of his rapists family members to join him before the wall is built. There's a Weissmann and a Goldstein on the team, and those are definitely Mexicans names. And that's nothing! There's a Zainab Ahmad, which as everyone knows is the most popular name amongst Mexicans. The FBI stands for Fernando Bernardo Iglesias. Fucking Mexicans are stopping Trump from making America great again.

Matt Franko said...

Mueller is probably full of PTSD symptoms from Vietnam... should be enjoying a well deserved long retirement...

the only reason Comey said anything about Hillary was because Trump was trolling the FBI in his campaign... saying she got off with no investigation... "get the emails from Russia" "get the emails from wikileaks"... that sort of thing... pissed off the LEADERSHIP of the FBI/IC as Trump was calling then out on it...

Agents there knew it was a whitewash So Comey felt he had to say something which was he lied and said they investigated it and no crimes were committed... to try to get the issue off the table for Hillary and not lose the confidence of his rank and file agents...

Separate issue is that the Dems appear to have been using surveillance systems accessible to the Obama IC to spy on the Trump campaign... this was detected by NSA and the illegalities reported to the FISC as far back as 2016 before the election..... then once Trump won NSA briefed him at the Tower and he moved the transition team to Bedminster NJ the next day as they probably didnt have the routers in NJ monitored.. iow the FISA warrant the Dems were operating under to listen in at the Tower didnt authorize monitoring in NJ so they would be ok there...

so they are in big trouble it just depends on how far up it goes in the Obama administration... might just be some worker bees might not... remember Nunes didnt go to the FBI SCIF he went to the NSC SCIF to look at something...

So this is the next phase... ie NSC and Dept of State (United Nations) illegal domestic surveillance...

Nunes said this Friday:

http://thehill.com/homenews/house/372109-nunes-says-house-intel-panel-looking-at-state-dept-involvement-in-russia-probe

this has a long way to go but somebody(s) is going to jail...


John said...

Matt: "this has a long way to go but somebody(s) is going to jail..."

Yeah, Trump. And you know why? Because everyone has made deals with Mueller.

As for Nunes, who cares what he has to say? He's such a dumb bastard that he says what Trump tells him to say, no matter how stupid. The Nunes memo is moronic at best, which says it all. This is the best they can do?

The issue is why is Trump and his ever diminishing circle of minions trying their damnedest to wreck the Mueller investigation? Why not just let him do his job? All this stuff about illegal taps and everything else is a hamfisted distraction. Mueller has flipped everyone who has entered his office. Everyone is desperate to make deals with Mueller. If there was nothing, why are they all flipping? Why are they all making like rats on a sinking ship? If Mueller investigated Hillary or any previous president, he'd find enough to bury them all. That's obvious, but that's not the issue here, is it? Mueller is investigating Trump. So cries of "unfair" are irrelevant.

What's also obvious is Mueller now has so much dirt on Trump that the list of formerly close confidantes of Trump is now so long that no one can remember them all. The question isn't who's flipped but who hasn't flipped? Go on then, name a single individual who's been unlucky to come on Mueller's radar who hasn't flipped? Name one? There aren't any, and Bannon's right when he says Trump Junior is going to be fried like an egg on national television. Bannon may be pissed off by how he was treated, but he's not a total ignoramus or one for making overly theatrical statements. They've all decided to rat out Trump, and it has nothing to do with blonde bimbos and golden showers.

If everyone brought in by Mueller has decided to cross a president and a notoriously vindictive thuggish one at that, then they must be doing it for a bloody good reason. Which is to say, they're more frightened of what Mueller has than of Trump. Now that's saying something, you'll have to admit. Mueller's got them all and he's leveraging them all to get Trump. No matter what anyone says, money's such an easy thing to follow. If the FBI wants to devote all their best white collar agents and untold money on getting Trump, then you'd have to be a fool to bet against them, especially given how carefree Trump has always been with his big mouth the evidence must be a mile wide. I'd say Mueller's got Trump already, but like the superb investigator everyone says he it seems that he wants to amass such a mountain of evidence and witnesses that even Fox News will have to surrender to the evidence.

Tom Hickey said...

“I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and wouldn’t lose any voters, ok? It’s, like, incredible.” — Donald Trump, 23 Jan 2016

Trump is still right about this. The Trump voters are hardened, just like the HRC voters, and the Bernie bots.

Facts don't matter, because these people live in different universes with contradictory "facts."

Look at just the headlines in the competing media to get the picture.

The US is on a collision course both domestically and internationally now.

The POVs are so divergent and positions so hardened now, there seems no pulling back at his point.

To give an example, Rush Limbaugh, with 26 million daily listeners, has much wider influence than all the major media combined. They there is the Internet, where the cocooning is fixed.

There is simply no way to get to resolution now without conflict erupting.

Matt Franko said...

Who has flipped?

Matt Franko said...

Carter Page is suing for defamation...

Matt Franko said...

Mueller pulled the sentence hearing for Flynn:

http://dailycaller.com/2018/01/31/robert-mueller-michael-flynn-sentencing/

The whole thing is based on a phony Hillary document.... Mueller is probably dropping the charges...

John said...

Matt, that link says next to nothing, and certainly doesn't corroborate anything you said! Even the hyperventilating Daily Caller didn't go so far as to make the claim that you did.

Flynn admits to knowingly and wilfully lying to the FBI. It then reports that Mueller has asked and been given a delay, though no one knows why. Nothing about the charges being dropped because they've got nothing on him. He's admitted to knowingly and wilfully lying to federal prosecutors, which is a criminal offence and suggests that the real crime is not the lying but what he was trying to cover up. It's not like the FBI asked him what his favourite colour was, and because he lied he's dropped himself in a whole load of trouble. Be serious. He lied because there was something illegal he was trying to cover up. If anything, the charges may be dropped for reasons opposite to those you're claiming. He's helping the case against Trump - a plea deal. You're overreaching on little available information, when it all indicates the opposite: that he's done a deal.

Didn't Flynn drop the "joint defense agreement" with Trump? This would suggest that Flynn wants to get as far away from Trump as possible and as close to Mueller. Why else would you do it? Not only that, Flynn agreed to "fully cooperate" with the Mueller investigation after entering the guilty plea. Does this sound like a man who is about to get off scot-free?

But no, according to you "the whole thing is based on a phony Hillary document". What, that Flynn has admitted on record to knowingly and wilfully lying to the FBI? That he's on record as dropping the "joint defense agreement"? That all of this is a phony Hillary document? Well, fair enough. All that can be said is that your standards for evidence, legal defences and journalistic reports aren't mine. When I read that Flynn's legal team has accepted that their client had knowingly and wilfully lied to the FBI, or that Flynn has dropped the previous "joint defense agreement" he made with Trump's legal team, I don't immediately conclude that this is all a lie and the more rational and obvious conclusion is that this is all Hillary Clinton's doing.

Papadopolous has also admitted to lying to the FBI, yet charges as far as I am aware have not yet been levelled, presumably because he's also helping the investigation. Manafort and Gates have been charged with money laundering, but how long they'll serve depends on how much they cooperate with Mueller. If I was looking at a ten or twenty year stretch for laundering Russian money, I know who I'd be more afraid of. Then there are all the others who I can't remember. Now, you really have to ask why it is so many people close to Trump are all admitting to lying to the FBI (a very serious matter, for which there can only be a very serious reason) or being charged with money laundering?

Kushner seems to be up to his eyes in debt, with many, including Bannon, predicting the imminent collapse of his property empire. I wouldn't be in the least bit surprised if that's one of the many places Mueller is looking into. Trump's connections with dirty Russian money was possibly on its way to save Kushner but has been scared off by the investigation. No dirty money can be induced Kushner's way. Business is business, and the money may find itself frozen. Why take the risk, when all things Trump are attracting this much heat?