32 thoughts on “News/Politics 5-14-18

  1. People are still nagging at James Comey and second-guessing his decision to announce the discovery of the Weiner emails in October, 2016. Here is another example:

    This is another example why it is important for people to read Comey’s book. There are all sorts of ridiculous lies going around about Comey. A reasonably intelligent friend told me this weekend that Comey did what he did because he wanted to be Hillary’s Attorney General. Once a person becomes somewhat familiar with the facts, he will understand that Comey is the very last person Hillary would appoint to any position because she hates him and has since at least 2002.

    I hope no one ever again has to lead an FBI that is charged with investigating two dishonest candidates – one of whom is certain to be their boss in a manner of months.


  2. “What would you have done differently?”

    Oh I don’t know, how about not taking the word of shady Russians that any of what they allege actually happened. And two, he was sent to hunt dirt so that’s all he went looking for.

    The truth was always irrelevant to him, his handlers, and those financing him. Dirt was what they went looking for, so it’s what they found. If he’s such a patriot and friend, maybe he should find someone who isn’t a scumbag to work for, and maybe get a new line of work that doesn’t involve unfounded, unproven character assassination.


  3. 1. Steele had been taught to secure and evaluate Russian sources for years. He had done so in the service of his country and the Western Alliance.
    2. The truth he found scared him so bad he overruled his employer and took the evidence to US authorities and John McCain. It was a 911 call.
    3. Steele never knew who had hired Global GPS.
    4. Much of The Dossier has been proven true. Can you list the parts that have been proven to be false?

    The Dossier is more true than either the Democrat narrative or the Trumpkin narrative. The Dems claim Trump is an evil genius who conspired with Russia to steal the election. That is laughable. The Trumpkins claim that the whole story of Russian interference in the election and contacts with Trumpers is a myth. Clearly, that is false. The likely (if not obvious) truth is that the Russians did all they could to help Trump beat Hillary and they are holding something (maybe many things) over his head.


  4. “Americans are being held hostage and terrorized by the fringes. That’s what’s going on here. It’s not like 50 percent of Americans thinks one thing and 50 percent thinks another thing. No, 15 percent on each side are effectively controlling the conversation and 70 percent of us don’t hate each other.

    “I can ask any audience, “How many of you love somebody with whom you disagree politically?” Every hand goes up. And yet, you’re willing to have somebody, some fringe person on your side of the debate, say that your brother-in-law or your mother or your aunt is evil and stupid.”


    Liked by 6 people

  5. “Gina Haspel and How Torture Deceived Us Into Iraq

    As Colin Powell’s chief of staff, I saw how intel gleaned from ‘enhanced interrogation’ was used to make the case for the 2003 invasion.”

    “If the public had the full report on torture that Republican Senator Richard Burr has ordered into oblivion, they would know how to respond to President Trump’s nomination of Gina Haspel to be director of the CIA. The report reveals in excruciating detail, first, that torture was used by the United States, and, second, that such criminal acts did not produce good intelligence. In fact, when acted upon, that information created immeasurable tragedy.

    I know because the primary case corroborating this truth was one I was central in developing.”


    Liked by 3 people

  6. Celebrations in Israel.


    “Israel’s government prepared enthusiastically Sunday for the formal opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem with a gala party at its Foreign Ministry that included President Trump’s daughter Ivanka, her husband, Jared Kushner, and other American VIPs.

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told revelers that Trump’s December declaration recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital was “the right thing to do.”

    Netanyahu said, “Thank you, President Trump, for your bold decision. Thank you for making the alliance between Israel and the United States stronger than ever.”

    The prime minister said Trump’s decision recognized a 3,000-year Jewish connection to Jerusalem and the “truth” that Jerusalem would be Israel’s capital under any future peace deal.”

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Another conservative northern county wants to secede from Sacramento.


    “California is a diverse, populous state full of potential. Yet for residents in twenty-one counties in Northern California—and they are particular about their truly northern status compared to San Francisco—they feel left out. I learned first-hand about the struggles for these rugged salt-of-the earth conservatives during a three-day visit to the region. I gave two speeches on conservative activism and to recruit help for the fight against California’s increasingly unpopular sanctuary state law, SB 54.

    “North State” is so far north, the closest airport is in Medford, Oregon. The region stretches from California’s northwesternmost county, Del Norte, to the northeastern corner of Modoc County, down to Tuolumne County (which just opted out of SB 54). The citizens want more than respect. They want to form their own new state: Jefferson. The namesake comes from President Thomas Jefferson’s vision of a free republic emerging in the Pacific Northwest and a desire for more regional autonomy.

    “To the rest of the state, we don’t exist” says Louis Gliatto, the head of the Yreka (not Eureka) Tea Party and Siskiyou County Committee member for “Citizens for Fair Representation.” To prove how out of touch the Rest of California (ROC) has become, Tehama and Siskiyou counties were the first jurisdictions to opt out of SB 54, one month before Los Alamitos passed its own Constitution Compliance ordinance. The two North State counties openly declared that they would comply with federal law. How could the press have missed this? A county of 44,000 residents deserves to be recognized for taking that bold step.

    This new state project is not new, yet few know about it. In the late 1870’s, the state legislature was limited to 120 representatives, but the state population has skyrocketed. Only until the 1930s did legislative districts account for size and population for representation in Sacramento. In 1941, this spread-out conservative community of ranchers, loggers, and farmers initiated the movement to break away, frustrated by the growing disconnect and lack of representation from Sacramento. Today, three state senators and six assembly members must compete with the dominant LA and Bay Area delegations.

    The Jefferson movement faded away quickly in the wake of World War II, but California’s reckless escalation of progressive policies has revived the Jefferson movement for the last five years. In northern cities and along the roads, Jefferson signs and flags (a green field featuring a gold prospector’s pan with two Xs’s to represent the sense of being double-crossed by the rest of California) gently stand out or wave under many of the American flags, all on proud display throughout the region. Despite the left-wing tilt of Mendocino, Sonoma, and Marin counties, Jefferson residents are down-to-earth entrepreneurs, engineers, and invested farmers. They laugh about the differences between Humboldt County, with its commercial kush and tie-dyed shirts; and Siskiyou County, where lush, verdant pastures match the unofficial banner, and colorful sunsets greet the peaceful homesteaders. Jeffersonians vocally oppose commercial marijuana, too, as its illegal cultivation and distribution (despite the passage of pro-pot initiative Prop 64 in 2016) has caused violent crime and corruption to spike.”


  8. Another false “tsunami” warning. 🙂


    “Each day, the impending electoral “blue tidal wave” gets upgraded on the Hawaiian scale of electoral wave strength. Every special election, no matter how small, is inflated to an epic scale that “spells disaster” for the president and the party he commandeered in 2016.

    Just one thing stands in the way of this electoral disaster of biblical proportions.


    The writing is simply not on the wall for a Democratic blow-out. The president’s approval rating has been consistently higher than Obama enjoyed at the same point in his presidency. Economic news has been staggeringly good. The unemployment rate is at a 44-year low. The Democrats have no coherent message. The NRA is flush with cash following this year’s extremist anti-gun rhetoric. And the RNC has 40 million dollars more than the “dead broke” DNC.

    Now, this is not to suggest that Republicans will make huge gains themselves. Honestly, how many more offices are left for Republicans to win? The only place where Republicans could see real growth is California, where we might not even be able to field a candidate for governor or senator. The party’s silver lining for the Golden State is, as always, that California is the living embodiment of the failure of left-wing politics. With no grown-ups in Sacramento, California’s pain is the Republicans’ gain.

    And for their electoral woes in the other 49 states, Democrats have no one to blame but themselves.

    The party that once genuinely championed the working-class and traditional liberal values has been hijacked by elite coastal millionaires; insane college professors; impossible-to-please social justice warriors; and an unending, unthinking mob of protesters. The Democrats’ “big tent” has become a three-ring circus.

    Liberals no longer call themselves “liberal” because they have abandoned the values that word embodies: “liberty.” Instead they now use the Orwellian term “progressive.” Only what we want is progress. Those who disagree will report to the Ministry of Love for re-education.

    The far left, which has become the mainstream left, has turned on core liberal values like the presumption of innocence; freedom of speech; freedom of the press; the right to a secret ballot; racial integration; and freedom of religion. (The last one doesn’t even require a citation.) So basically, progressives have declared war on the core tenets of democracy.

    Many even want to get rid of democracy.”


    “It’s time for the Democrats to stop bashing President Trump.

    It’s not going to be easy, given his policies and personality. It might even mean checking into a 12-step program. But setting a winning agenda is like maneuvering an aircraft carrier. It takes time to change course. And if they want to be on target for the November midterm elections, the Democrats need to start changing course now.

    Like it or not, a significant number of Americans are actually happy these days. They are making money. They feel safe, and they agree with with the president’s protectionist trade policies, his call for more American jobs, even his immigration stance.

    The jobs growth reports, the North Korea summit and the steady economy are beating out the Stormy Daniels scandal and the Robert Mueller investigation in Middle America, hands down.

    So you are not going to win back the House by making it all about him.

    Rather than stoking the base by attacking Trump, Democrats need to come up with a platform that addresses the average voters’ hopes and concerns. Not just the needs of underdogs or whatever cause happens to be the media flavor of the week.

    Democrats need to look like the adults, not like another pack of screaming kids on the playground.

    And they need to start now.”

    But they won’t. They can’t help it.


  9. Movin’ on up.


    “Driving their concerns are Trump’s approval rating, which has ticked upward in recent weeks, and high Republican turnout in some recent primaries, suggesting the GOP base remains energized. What’s more, Republicans stand to benefit politically from a thriving economy and are choosing formidable candidates to take on vulnerable Democratic senators.

    One of their biggest sources of anxiety is the Senate race in Florida, where some Democrats fear that three-term Sen. Bill Nelson has not adequately prepared to defend his seat against Gov. Rick Scott, a well-financed former businessman handpicked for the race by Trump. Scott and Nelson are close in early polls.

    “I’m concerned about the race. I think everybody is,” said Ione Townsend, the Democratic Party chair in Hillsborough County, home to Tampa. Townsend said it will “be hard to compete” with Scott’s money.”

    Yeah, it couldn’t possibly be anything but money making them lose……. 🙄


  10. Any of you familiar with Tomi Lahren? I have a couple particularly conservative Facebook friends who like her and sometimes share her videos. I cannot stand her attitude – condescending and snarky. (The kind of attitude that people tend to hate when coming from one of the opposite political position.)

    ” ‘You don’t just come into this country with low skills, low education, not understanding the language and come into our country because someone says it makes them feel nice. That’s not what this country is based on,’ she insisted. . .

    According to Mendelsohn, ‘the 1930 census says Tomi’s 3x great-grandmother had been here for 41 years and still spoke German.’ . . .

    ‘Her 2nd great-grandmother had been here for 10 yrs. Spoke no English,’ she says, tweeting the documentation. ‘Her great-grandfather’s 1895 baptism from MN? Recorded in Norwegian.’ ”


    Remember when we, left and right, used to quote Emma Lazarus’ poem from the Statue of Liberty?

    “Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
    With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
    Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
    A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
    Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
    MOTHER OF EXILES. From her beacon-hand
    Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
    The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.

    “Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
    With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
    Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

    Most of us are here because our own ancestors were the tired, poor, huddled masses, the wretched refuse, homeless and tempest-tossed.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Like I said…….


    “An IAF fighter jet struck five terrorist targets in the northern Gaza Strip in response to violent acts by Hamas along the security fence on Monday, according to IDF reports. The targets included military training facilities belonging to Hamas.

    Earlier today, two additional Hamas military positions were hit by tank- and aircraft fire, after IDF forces were shot at by Hamas from the northern part of the coastal enclave.”


  12. erusalem in the news – thoughts? I don’t think the end times theology popular in the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s, and even into the ’90s among evangelicals is quite as popular today, however, a point that I think this author perhaps doesn’t realize. And I think her summation (in final graph I quote here) is over-reactionary.


    For many evangelicals, Jerusalem is about prophecy, not politics


    … For many conservative evangelicals, Jerusalem is not about politics. It is not about peace plans or Palestinians or two-state solutions. It is about prophecy. About the Bible. And, most certainly, it is about the end-times.

    When I was young, our pastor insisted that Jerusalem had an important role to play in these end-times events. When the Jews rejected Jesus as the messiah, he explained, God chose the church to accomplish his mission. Soon this “church age” would end with the rapture of true believers. …

    … This theology — a literal belief that all these things must happen before Jesus will return to reign on Earth — is called “dispensational pre-millennialism” and it is not the quirky opinion of some isolated church. Although the majority of Christians do not share these views, versions of dispensational pre-millennialism dominate American evangelicalism.

    It originated as a small movement in the 1840s, but by the 1970s, millions of evangelical and fundamentalist churchgoers had embraced some form of it. Dispensationalism was popularized in a best-selling book called “The Late, Great Planet Earth” by Hal Lindsey; and later, in the 1990s, it reached an even larger audience through the “Left Behind” novels by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. The theology spread via Bible camps and colleges, through theological seminaries and revival meetings, in films and videos, by Sunday school materials, and in daily devotional guides — all teaching that the end of the world was near, and that Jerusalem was the physical place where this apocalyptic drama would unfold. …

    … I doubt that President Trump could explain dispensational pre-millennialism. I doubt he knows the term. But his evangelical supporters know it. Some of his advisers are probably whispering these prophecies in his ears. Trump might not really care how they interpret the Bible, but he cares that white evangelicals continue to stand with him. Moving the embassy to Jerusalem is one way to affirm his commitment to these evangelicals — reminding them that he, Donald J. Trump, is pressing biblical history forward to its conclusion and that he is God’s man in the unfolding of these last days….

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Let’s face it, the media hates this, and even more, they hate that it’s Trump delivering the lecture.

    “The responsibility for these tragic deaths rest squarely with Hamas,” Shah said, adding that “Hamas is intentionally and cynically provoking this response.”

    He added: “As the Secretary of State [Mike Pompeo] said, Israel has the right to defend itself.”

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Huh. This must be one of those Mueller conflicts Trump has been hinting at, and the operation probably broke the law.


    “In 2009, when Mueller ran the FBI, the bureau asked Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska to spend millions of his own dollars funding an FBI-supervised operation to rescue a retired FBI agent, Robert Levinson, captured in Iran while working for the CIA in 2007.

    Yes, that’s the same Deripaska who has surfaced in Mueller’s current investigation and who was recently sanctioned by the Trump administration.”

    “We knew he was paying for his team helping us, and that probably ran into the millions,” a U.S. official involved in the operation confirmed.

    One agent who helped court Deripaska was Andrew McCabe, the recently fired FBI deputy director who played a seminal role starting the Trump-Russia case, multiple sources confirm.”

    “The FBI rewarded Deripaska for his help. In Fall 2009, according to U.S. entry records, Deripaska visited Washington on a rare law enforcement parole visa. And since 2011 he has been granted entry at least eight times on a diplomatic passport, even though he doesn’t work for the Russian Foreign Ministry.

    Former FBI officials confirm they arranged the access.”

    “I was alerted to Deripaska’s past FBI relationship by U.S. officials who wondered whether the Russian’s conspicuous absence from Mueller’s indictments might be related to his FBI work.

    They aren’t the only ones.

    Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz told me he believes Mueller has a conflict of interest because his FBI previously accepted financial help from a Russian that is, at the very least, a witness in the current probe.

    “The real question becomes whether it was proper to leave him (Deripaska) out of the Manafort indictment, and whether that omission was to avoid the kind of transparency that is really required by the law,” Dershowitz said.

    Melanie Sloan, a former Clinton Justice Department lawyer and longtime ethics watchdog, told me a “far more significant issue” is whether the earlier FBI operation was even legal: “It’s possible the bureau’s arrangement with Mr. Deripaska violated the Antideficiency Act, which prohibits the government from accepting voluntary services.”

    George Washington University constitutional law professor Jonathan Turley agreed: “If the operation with Deripaska contravened federal law, this figure could be viewed as a potential embarrassment for Mueller. The question is whether he could implicate Mueller in an impropriety.”

    Now that sources have unmasked the Deripaska story, time will tell whether the courts, Justice, Congress or a defendant formally questions if Mueller is conflicted.


  15. Bluff.

    Called and raised.


    “Attorneys for an alleged component of Russian trolling efforts during the 2016 presidential election are demanding that special counsel Robert Mueller be forced to reveal the grand jury instructions used in count one of the government’s indictment against Concord Management and Consulting LLC.

    The nine-page motion (plus supporting documents) filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia relies upon Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 6(e)(3)(E)(ii) which provides:

    The court may authorize disclosure—at a time, in a manner, and subject to any other conditions that it directs—of a grand-jury matter…at the request of a defendant who shows that a ground may exist to dismiss the indictment because of a matter that occurred before the grand jury.”

    “Concord’s argument is that Mueller failed to include a necessary knowledge requirement in count one of the indictment against Concord Management and other Russian entities and therefore, may need to be dismissed. (A knowledge requirement refers to intent or knowledge of criminal wrongdoing. Thus, an allegedly offending party would have knowledge of the criminality they’re alleged to have engaged in.) The motion notes, “violations of the relevant federal campaign laws and foreign agent registration requirements administered by the DOJ and the FEC require the defendant to have acted ‘willfully,’ a word that does not appear anywhere in Count One of the Indictment.”

    The motion continues, “As such, Count One of the Indictment appears to be facially invalid because it fails to charge an essential element of the offense of conspiracy to defraud the United States by impairing, obstructing and defeating the functions of the FEC and the DOJ, that is, that the Defendant acted willfully, in this case meaning that Defendant was aware of the FEC and FARA requirements, agreed to violate those requirements, and ultimately acted with intent to violate those requirements.”

    Concord Management’s Monday motion contains at least one reference to U.S. case law where similar indictments were dismissed because they failed to adequately track statutory language. In other words, Concord Management is arguing that Mueller and his army of attorneys charged Concord Management (and other Russian entities) with a vague-sounding “crime” that isn’t actually a crime.

    In fact, Concord Management’s motion explicitly says as much, claiming, “[T]he DOJ never brought any case like the instant Indictment, that is, an alleged conspiracy by a foreign corporation to ‘interfere’ in a Presidential election by allegedly funding free speech. The obvious reason for this is that no such crime exists in the federal criminal code.”


  16. People in glass houses……….


    “Many of the developments surrounding Stormy Daniels’ lawsuit against President Donald Trump have focused on the business dealings of attorney Michael Cohen, but an investigation by The Daily Caller News Foundation reveals that Daniels’ counsel, Michael Avenatti, has his own questionable history.

    Avenatti’s past is littered with lawsuits, jilted business partners and bankruptcy filings. People who have worked with the lawyer described him to TheDCNF as ruthless, greedy and unbothered by ethical questions.

    Dillanos Coffee CEO David Morris claimed last Tuesday that Avenatti never paid him for over $160,000 worth of coffee that Dillanos supplied to Avenatti’s company. “So @StormyDaniels hot shot lawyer Michael owes my small company @Dillanos $160,179 for coffee,” Morris wrote on Twitter. “He talks a big talk about integrity. We trusted him.””

    ““My decision to become a member and manager of Global Baristas was based, in part, on Michael Avenatti’s representation that he would provide both the capital to fund the entire Tully’s acquisition and sufficient working capital to allow Global Baristas to operate the Tully’s Coffee stores once the acquisition was completed,” Dempsey said in an August 20, 2013, affidavit.

    “Michael Avenatti never notified me that he intended to have or caused Global Baristas to borrow $2,000,000 for working capital, nor did he notify me that he planned to have or caused the company to pledge substantially all, if not all, of its assets to secure any loan,” Dempsey charged. Avenatti denied the accusations but agreed to a settlement just three days later.

    Avenatti no longer owns Global Baristas LLC, and said he divested from the company in 2017, but he remains Tully’s general counsel.

    David Nold, a Seattle attorney representing several Tully’s vendors, filed a complaint against Avenatti with the California State Bar on March 26, accusing him of fraud.

    “In essence, he bought a company out of bankruptcy and then used it for a ‘pump and dump’ scheme to deprive federal and state taxing authorities of millions of dollars,” Nold claimed.

    Those who have worked with Avenatti describe an individual obsessed with fame and willing to use unethical methods to win a case.”


  17. So what’s a shyster to do?

    Threaten to sue the messenger, of course!


    “Let me be clear. If you and your colleagues do not stop with the hit pieces that are full of lies and defamatory statements, I will have no choice but to sue each of you and your publication for defamation,” Avenatti wrote in an email to TheDCNF.

    “During that process, we will expose your publication for what it truly is. We will also recover significant damages against each of you that participated personally. So if I were you, I would tell Mr. Trump to find someone else to fabricate things about me.”

    “If you think I’m kidding, you really don’t know anything about me. This is the last warning,” he warned.”

    Don’t laugh, he’s super serious.


  18. The Trump Cult has now been instructed not only to defend their idol against Mueller, but also to defend a Russian company indicted by Mueller. Interestingly, the Russian company was able to hire more able attorneys than Giuliani and Michael Cohen. Perhaps the Russians have a history of paying their attorneys and following their advice.


  19. Here is why I find Trump Cult support for the Russian company Concord Management interesting. In the indictment of a Concord, Mueller stated that no US citizens knowingly participated with Concord and the other Russian companies and persons as they intervened in the US election by use of social media, creating rallies, spreading lies, etc. Therefore, the indictment of Concord and the others is not connected to Trump, his campaign or his Administration.

    For Trumpkins to defend Concord is like OJ Simpson supporters also defending the innocence of The Charles Manson Family just because The Manson Family and OJ were both prosecuted by the Los Angeles District Attorney.


  20. DJ, I thought the UTA student did a good job on both the theology and the political history. I’m pretty sure he did his undergraduate work at a Baylor, Hardin-Simmons, Mary Hardin Baylor or Howard Payne. One Texas Southern Baptist can usually spot another.


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