• Tips gratefully accepted here. Thanks!:

  • Recent Comments

    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Why watch Maddow
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Why watch Maddow
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Why watch Maddow
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Why watch Maddow
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Why watch Maddow
    pm317 on Why watch Maddow
    pm317 on Why watch Maddow
    riverdaughter on Why watch Maddow
    pm317 on Why watch Maddow
    Niles on Why watch Maddow
    pm317 on Why watch Maddow
    pm317 on Why watch Maddow
    pm317 on Why watch Maddow
    Ga6thDem on Why watch Maddow
    pm317 on Why watch Maddow
  • Categories


  • Tags

    abortion Add new tag Afghanistan Al Franken Anglachel Atrios bankers Barack Obama Bernie Sanders big pharma Bill Clinton cocktails Conflucians Say Dailykos Democratic Party Democrats Digby DNC Donald Trump Donna Brazile Economy Elizabeth Warren feminism Florida Fox News General Glenn Beck Glenn Greenwald Goldman Sachs health care Health Care Reform Hillary Clinton Howard Dean John Edwards John McCain Jon Corzine Karl Rove Matt Taibbi Media medicare Michelle Obama Michigan misogyny Mitt Romney Morning Edition Morning News Links Nancy Pelosi New Jersey news NO WE WON'T Obama Obamacare OccupyWallStreet occupy wall street Open thread Paul Krugman Politics Presidential Election 2008 PUMA racism Republicans research Sarah Palin sexism Single Payer snark Social Security Supreme Court Terry Gross Texas Tim Geithner unemployment Wall Street WikiLeaks women
  • Archives

  • History

    April 2018
    S M T W T F S
    « Mar    
    1234567
    891011121314
    15161718192021
    22232425262728
    2930  
  • RSS Paul Krugman: Conscience of a Liberal

  • The Confluence

    The Confluence

  • RSS Suburban Guerrilla

  • RSS Ian Welsh

    • Open Thread
      I’ve been spending most of my time lately either praying to the porcelain God or wishing I felt other than I do. Nauseau being bad for writing (at least for my writing, perhaps you write great while sick to your stomach), please use this thread to talk among yourselves. I devoutely hope to return to […]
  • Top Posts

  • Advertisements

OMG it’s only Monday

Did you hear about this today? Michael Cohen had exactly three clients: Donald Trump, Elliott Broidy and one other person he refused to name.

Guess who that person is. Go on. You’ll never guess in a million years. Ok, I’ll tell you. It’s…

Sean Hannity.

Yep, that Sean Hannity. You know, the blowhard pundit who works for the network that had to pay off a bunch of women that Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly sexually harassed?

And what kind of “law” is Cohen’s specialty? If you guessed “making the women you hit on, slept with or knocked up go away and shut up”, then you would be correct!!

As Jon Stewart would say:

I cant wait for Sam Bee to take on the “Taint Team”. The jokes practically write themselves. 🤪

Advertisements

How Comey’s letter made Hillary’s loss *more* likely.

Making this short. Remember this little ditty from Rudy Giuliani back in 2016?

Ah, yes, Rudy. The prematurely decomposing twin of Simon Barsinister.

Anyway, Comey’s contention is that he wrote that notorious letter because he was concerned that some rogue elements in the FBI or DOJ were going to leak it anyway and … that’s where his reasoning falls apart for me. I admit that even this much leaves me scratching my head. Comey says he assumes that Hillary was going to win anyway, so really, he did her a FAVOR by leaking that info about the possible Clinton emails on Anthony Weiner’s laptop, before we knew what was on the laptop or whether there was any reason for an investigation at all while concealing that Trump’s campaign was getting all kinds of attention at the FBI. 🙄

Let’s not even talk about how the Clinton campaign was blindsided by this announcement while they were still on a plane while campaigning. Yep, no advanced notice, heads up or anything. You’d think that a guy who found out he was fired by watching the crawl on Fox News would have some empathy about how that must have felt but Comey does not feel compelled to self-reflect.

Here’s my problem with Comey’s faulty reasoning and why I think that in this particular instance, he was doing the favor on behalf of the Republican Party.

Let’s say that the NY field office, with Rudy chortling darky and rubbing his hands together while standing hunched over on the side watching it all, had leaked that information. There might have been a LOT more push back on Rudy et all. It could be pointed out that Rudy was seeking revenge for Clinton winning the senate seat he wanted. It could be demonstrated that the field office was not behaving professionally or ethically or within DOJ department guidelines by leaking the details of an investigation for which there was no clear evidence that Clinton was even remotely connected. A case could be made that this was a very dirty last minute political trick. There would have been a lot more justifiable outrage. Giuliani could have been made to explain himself. Obama might have justifiably asked for an explanation.

But no.

Comey stepped in and before they could leak it, he wrote that stupid letter and put the official FBI governmental stamp of approval on it.

So now, it looks like a big federal case instead of a handful of renegade FBI agents getting ahead of themselves and doing Rudy’s bidding. Instead of heading it off, Comey made it a big gigantic thing in the minds of very indecisive voters, causing them to stay home or vote for Trump. The ones I canvassed told me they were waiting for the other shoe to drop just before the election.

This letter was the sign they were waiting for. And it sure looked official rather than a coordinated political ratf#%k.

Comey has yet to provide an adequate explanation as to why he did that. None of the reasons he has given so far make any damn sense.

Someone should ask him why he decided to elevate the email thing instead of letting the NY Field office take the fall. Why didn’t he call their bluff? That’s the $10000000 question.

The Pyre of Jim Comey

The story about Comey’s infamous letter goes something like this:

Comey was asked during an interview on ABC News for a response to Clinton saying Comey’s letter shortly before the election announcing the FBI was going to look back into the email investigation ensured her defeat.

“I hope not,” Comey said during the interview.

He added that he hopes people will try to put themselves in his shoes. He said he was not trying to help or hurt a candidate, but was trying to do the right thing.

He was further pressed on whether his decision was influenced by his assumption that Clinton was going to win the election.

“It must have been. I don’t remember consciously thinking about that, but it must have been because I was operating in a world where Hillary Clinton was going to beat Donald Trump, and so I’m sure that it was a factor,” he said.

“I don’t remember spelling it out, but it had to have been, that she’s going to be elected president and if I hide this from the American people, she’ll be illegitimate the moment she’s elected, the moment this comes out,” he added.

My favorite author, JRR Tolkien, possibly one of the wisest of literary wizards, wrote a character named Denethor, who peering into a crystal ball, thought he could see the future. He became so despondent that he brought his dying son to a tomb and lit it on fire. Gandalf shows up in time to try to talk some sense into the mad steward of Gondor telling him that while it’s one thing for Denethor to take his own life in despair, he has no right to deprive his son of a chance to live. The father allows his son to be removed from the pyre and then he dies among his flames.

I’m reminded of this because Jim Comey essentially did the same thing to us. He thought he could see the future and fearing the worst, he brought us all down with him. He relied on his own judgement and didn’t let anyone else try to talk some sense into him.

Did it ever occur to him that because she was the first female candidate in history that we as a nation did not have a precedent to follow? Her gender was a new parameter added to the model, a model that we have never run before. Predictions about her win were based on a rational world and history that proved again and again that the most qualified, sensible, candidate would win. Yes, we had an anomaly or two but that’s how this usually works when you’re running against someone so uniquely unqualified.

But it’s worse than that. Comey compared Hillary’s stupid little email problem that had been investigated to death, differently than all of the bad news he had to have been hearing about Donald Trump. There was much more to fear from a man who was hiding his tax returns. By November 2016, Comey must have known about the Steele Dossier that had turned out to be pretty credible, regardless of how salacious it was. He saw how Trump was stirring his base into a dangerous frenzy, Trump’s pathetic performances at the debates and his history of grabbing women by the pussy. And he decided that Hillary Clinton would be a less legitimate president? Really??

Jim Comey is a case study on how implicit bias works. I get the feeling that he would never be satisfied that Hillary wasn’t guilty of something. Nothing she says, no documentation she provided, regardless of how much she cooperated, would ever convince him that she hadn’t done anything wrong and was illegitimate. He scolded her in a way that was unprecedented and shocking. He had interfered in the election long before October 2016. The gentleman protested too much. I think he was just personally uncomfortable as a conservative Republican man with the prospect of a Democratic woman running the show and being his boss. I think that was an itch in his brain he couldn’t scratch to satisfaction.

Maybe it was less that he didn’t weigh the evidence against the two candidates fairly and more that he was incapable of doing so.

But in any case, he thought the possibility of her illegitimacy outweighed the possibility that he was going to put a criminal in the White House.

Just take that in for a second. He decided to look into the future and burn us all.

He might not be a liar but he’s quite possibly the least wise among us.

Vox explains Syria

Damn, they’re good:

Maybe bombing Syria was the right thing to do. If I had been president when the Syrian civil war started, I might have done air strikes like we did in Libya to make sure the war ended quickly. But we didn’t do that so the war drags on into its 7th year. Targeted air strikes weren’t sufficient the first time Assad gassed his people. It stopped the chemical warfare for awhile but didn’t stop the war.

You just have to wonder if Trump’s failure to condemn chemical weapons use in England last month caused Assad to think he could get away with using gas again. After all, if Russia could do it…

It’s a horrible thought. That’s why it’s important to have the right guy in the White House. Elections have consequences.

And ISIS grew out of the catastrophe of the Iraq War, an unnecessary, wasteful, expensive, destructive war started by George W. Bush. It’s hard to believe that some people have already forgotten about who started the Iraq War.

As the Great Vizzini says, “never get involved in a land war in Asia”.

Re: Comey

There’s a lot to be said about Comey’s book. I hope many of you say it.

Until I wrap up what I’m doing today, I’ll put this out there:

Comey is the propagator of implicit bias. He’s a conservative. If you see what he writes through that lens, it will all start to make sense. I don’t agree with every decision he made. In fact, it’s his letter that lead to us being in this moment in time with a reckless two year old disguised as a 71 yr old version of Gary Busey’s mugshot in charge of the most powerful nation on earth.

But keep in mind that he is an accurate reporter of what he observed. It’s what he did with that information once it was processed by his 19th century worldview that f#%*ed us up beyond all recognition.

******************************

Donald Trump is losing it. No, seriously:

You know, I grew up during the Ephraim Zimblist days when the FBI was a revered institution. I didn’t know anything about J. Edgar Hoover and that stuff. All I knew was the FBI was on the job to catch bad guys. Sure, it’s not perfect and it’s always had conservative lawmen who were a little too straight and narrow for my tastes, mostly narrow. But I never doubted their dedication or professionalism. I lived down the street from an FBI agent at one time and always thought very highly of his integrity and skill.

To have Trump call these people “thieves and lowlifes” is deeply offensive to me. I have always been proud of our FBI and Treasury agents. This is really going too far. It goes without saying that Trump owes all of us an apology. But what I’d like to point out to him is that if he wanted to keep his seedy private life private and operate his corrupt businesses out of the spotlight, he shouldn’t have run for president. There’s no better way to force open the kimono than by getting elected.

That’s the deal. You get elected, we get to keep you accountable. The FBI works for US.

Nicole Wallace was a Republican until 2016

Nicole Wallace was the communications director for the Bush White House. Keep that in mind. Bush was a typical conservative Republican who up until Trump was one of the worst president we ever had. I’m not just saying that. Presidential historians rank him at or near the bottom for a variety of reasons, mostly because of the catastrophic Iraq War, the financial crisis of 2007, and various other bad things including that 9/11 happened on his watch. Remember George Tenet running around with his “hair on fire” trying to get Bush to pay attention to the PDB that said in big bold letters “Osama bin Laden determined to strike the United States“? Who could forget Condoleeza Rice being dragged in front of the 9/11 Commission and made to say that on the TeeVee?

Ah, yes, good ol’ George. I almost get wistful for those days.

Then I snap out of it because this kind of behavior seems all too typical of Republicans: callousness, carelessness, looking out for themselves…

Anyway, so Nicole Wallace worked for THAT White House. Then, something happened in 2016 and she changed her party affiliation to Independent. I can’t put my finger on what it was. Wait, it will come to me. Oh, yes, now I remember. It was when the MAGA cult installed the boss of a crime family (think the Corleones but with less class) in the White House.

Wallace went to MSNBC not too long ago. And who better to interpret the inner workings of a Republican White House. In the following, she brings up a very important point. Let’s listen in, shall we?

I am starting a new rule: it’s only fake if no one is arrested, charged, indicted, pleads guilty, or has his premises raided by the FBI.

Rule two: if you do something bad, you are not allowed to blame the other party for investigating you. Especially if the investigators are not from the other party.

Ok, that’s two rules. But they’re good ones.

**********************

Stay Tuned with Preet dropped early today. His interview this week is with Jeh Johnson, the secretary of DHS under Obama. Before the interview, Preet takes questions from listeners and this week, this segment starts to hone in on just what this raid on Cohen’s Office is about and why it is not improper to refer to Trump’s personal lawyer as his consigliere. There are things about mafia ways of doing business that I didn’t catch when I watched The Godfather. But I get it now.

Once you get it, it’s very difficult to unsee it. Go ahead, Niles. Listen to this podcast and see if you are not enlightened.

You gotta wonder if all these MAGA people would have deliberately voted him in if they’d known what kind of boss he truly is. All the crazy tweets, all the lack of policies, all the constitutional violations, they all make sense in the right context. And it’s also significant that it’s Mueller as special counsel and the southern district of NY that is now investigating. It’s all coming together.

Trumpism

Trumpism- the destruction of the regulatory state.

That means clean water, clean air, car efficiency standards, relaxing the FDA, food safety inspections, infrastructure standards, public school regulations, specifications for special education, disability standards, disclosure, fiduciary financial advisors, consumer protection against fraud, unfair labor practices, etc etc etc

That’s what all the campaign money bought. It bought congressmen, a president and a Supreme Court designed to dismantle the framework that keeps the wolves from eating us.

If you thought it was something else, well, you were wrong. It’s only for the predators, not the sheep who voted it in.