Discussion in 'Politics' started by billvon, Mar 23, 2017.

  1. billvon Valued Senior Member

    There are going to be some Trump supporters going into full on crazy over the latest investigation into Trump's collusion with the Russians:
    US officials: Info suggests Trump associates may have coordinated with Russians
    By Pamela Brown, Evan Perez and Shimon Prokupecz, CNN

    Updated 1:31 AM ET, Thu March 23, 2017

    Washington (CNN) - The FBI has information that indicates associates of President Donald Trump communicated with suspected Russian operatives to possibly coordinate the release of information damaging to Hillary Clinton's campaign, US officials told CNN.

    This is partly what FBI Director James Comey was referring to when he made a bombshell announcement Monday before Congress that the FBI is investigating the Trump campaign's ties to Russia, according to one source.

    The FBI is now reviewing that information, which includes human intelligence, travel, business and phone records and accounts of in-person meetings, according to those U.S. officials. The information is raising the suspicions of FBI counterintelligence investigators that the coordination may have taken place, though officials cautioned that the information was not conclusive and that the investigation is ongoing.

    In his statement on Monday Comey said the FBI began looking into possible coordination between Trump campaign associates and suspected Russian operatives because the bureau had gathered "a credible allegation of wrongdoing or reasonable basis to believe an American may be acting as an agent of a foreign power."
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  3. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    So Here's the Deal ....

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    Now that is anticlimactic.

    So, the thing is that I have on a couple of occasions recently watched headlines develop nearly in realtime via social media, namely Twit'.

    News by Twit' is an interesting experience, but Andrea Chalupa's↱ tweet thread on a particular #RussiaGate° issue, and that being the AP report↱ on Paul Manafort's work for Oleg Deripaska. Chalupa opens with a source, an "Active IC agent". So, yeah.

    Don't get me wrong, Chalupa is not some nut, but how are we to read this? Headline in point one: Trump could have been arrested in Russia for sex crimes; the kompromat includes sex crimes.

    Points two through nine rip Manafort, and Trump, for the former's work in Ukraine. Headline in point nine lends for drama, reminding of harassment her sister encountered trying to investigate Manafort, suggesting fear for life.

    Point ten is a list of seven names and implication of more with connections to Russian effort; perhaps a couple are surprising, but just because of the, "really?" factor.

    And then, sssssssmack. Here comes the IC agent again, and come on, really?

    Because the first thing is that this is slickly packaged.

    The second is that point eleven is a buried lede.

    The third is that there is no thing three.

    The fourth is that the buried lede isn't quite a buried lede; look at her explanation.

    And the thing is, it's nearly perfect. To the one, I mean, really, Donald Trump never wanted to win. Okay, file under, #wellduh. The idea that they made him run?

    Oh, come on, that's just too damn perfect↱; it's the headline everybody wants:

    The ultimate caveat is a clutch of confusing questions. What IC source would both have access to the information and leak it in this manner? The advice, of course, will be to watch the headlines, but come on. Eleventh in a tweetstrom about Manafort's contract. That's a buried lede. Why is it buried? No, really, we can all kind of imagine, right? But it really does sound just too damn perfect. And the they?

    To the one, how is this not bait? To the other, Andrea Chalupa is hardly naïve, and seems well enough connected. No wonder her thread is drawing attention.

    Thing is, we kind of get the idea that Mr. Trump wasn't really in this to win, or didn't expect to win, or some such. The idea that “they made him run”, though, just tends to stand out.

    So here's the deal: I actually think this is just Chalupa generally having after Manafort, and, you know, that's just fine. But there's a reason, then, this was coming around, so that the circle of people I landed on today all happened to be pushing this tweet thread. And I both get why and just don't. Watch the headlines, sure, but there's nothing there.

    Except what if she really does have an IC source willing to leak this way?

    And the only reason I will even flirt with that possibility is because in the widening gyre it is clear that the center cannot hold, and things aren't just falling apart, they're flying off on dangerous vectors; soon enough, someone is going to get hurt. Well, okay, who isn't a mysteriously-dead Russian. Or green-dyed opposition politician. Or ... ah ... I mean, holy shit, y'know?

    Watch the headlines? What headline are we watching for? Evidence that Trump was and is being blackmailed?

    To the one, I worry because this tweet thread caught on.

    To the other ... okay, look, to the other, I need this to be bullshit. Just ... because. I mean, if Chalupa isn't deliberately screwing with people, then what the hell was that actually about? Because there is a headline, a kindasorta headline, and a freaking headline of the century in there.

    But this is #DimensionTrump. Anything is possible. I find it difficult to believe this is how the news would come to us.

    Did Trump not want to be president? I can believe that.

    Did "they" make him run? How sinister of encouragement are we talking? What do we mean by "make"?

    Did an active IC agent leak this information to Andrea Chalupa? What counts as information? Call anticlimactic because if "they made him run" is anything more than a bunch of rich Russians stroking his ego and egging him on, isn't that actionable? Why leak this way? And just how conspiracist should I get?

    I mean, isn't it just too damn perfect?


    ° We couldn't, as a society, have found a different term? I mean, I get it, but can we please be done, as a society, with -gate scandalizing until something actually warrants it? Hey, is -gate in the OED, yet? Oh, right. Is it ... okay, I'll just go look it up. Still, #Trumpoodle would have worked. I'm using #PutiTrump, but that's because I've also been using #PutiToots for the world's most famous closet case. Never mind. It's just that we might as well properly canonize -gate, and may the English-speaking world please forgive us. I mean, you know, may the world forgive us Donald Fucking Trump, but, on this, yeah, we have cause for apology to an entire language, so, yeah, also everyone who speaks it.

    See Also:

    Horowitz, Jeff and Chad Day. "Before Trump job, Manafort worked to aid Putin". Associated Press. 22 March 2017. 23 March 2017.
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  5. wellwisher Banned Banned

    One reality check is, the DNC server, which gave information about Democrat strategy and games, was not hacked. The server was accessed using a phishing scam. A phishing scam is very low tech and can be nothing but a link, that if clicked, allows entry into the server. It was not a direct hack, but a rookie mistake by Podesta. This is not very advanced. This is what a high school hacker might do to get credit card information or pictures from someone's computer. If you had Russian hacking, one would expect something more sinister that would go in and out, and never leave a phishing trace.

    The real news is Trump's claim of being wire tapped, turns out to have some credibility. It is legal for US intelligence agencies to monitor foreign nationals who visit the USA, such as the Russian Ambassador. If the foreign national, being monitored, talks to an American citizen, anything said by the American citizen, is supposed to blacked out, so there is no invasion of privacy. The final transcript should only contain what the foresight national said, by law.

    Trump and his transition team, after the election, were in the cross fire of monitoring the Russian Ambassador, who talks to everybody in power, including Democrats. What happened was the privacy protocol was violated for Trump and his team. They were wired tapped via the Ambassador. Their private citizen transcript was not blacked out, as the law requires.

    There was nothing damming in what Trump or his team said. The real crime is this not being blacked out without a court order. Coincidentally, a few days before Obama left office, Obama changed the rules allowing all government intelligence agencies to share data. This made the uncensored privacy data, available to leftist shadow operatives, in domestic intelligence agencies, so they could leak and create a controversy.

    This illegal data is still being used by the Democrats, but with no real smoking gun. The Democrats keep on dragging this out with the hope of finding something. The real crime is someone ordered private citizen transcripts, not to be blacked out, with that private citizen an incoming president. One would need to be high in the chain of command, to do this. The new investigation, will need to go all the way to Obama, who will then point the finger at the Clinton people.

    As far as Paul Manafort helping Putin, didn't Hillary help Putin when she sold him all that bomb grade uranium? The Russians expanded their nuclear weapons because they had more bomb materials. Shouldn't this be the zero standard by which we judge everyone who deals with the Russians? One possible conspiracy theory is, if Russia hacked Hillary''s private server. They then threatened to leak Clinton influence peddling, unless they got some some blackmail like enriched uranium and looking the other way; Ukraine. Trump makes no sense in terms of teaming with Putin, since building the military does not help with the Russian plan, as much as weakening the US military as Obama and Hillary did.

    As far as hacking the election, does anyone think it is a little odd, that Hillary won California by millions of votes? It is next to impossible to alter the entire electoral college result since you would need to coordinate an intelligence campaign over many states. If the popular vote mattered the most, all you would need to do is hack California, since it votes late and it can be leveraged for millions of extra votes, if need be. Or if you are winning, it can be aborted or tailored to look kosher.

    Say the Democrats had been in bed with the Russians, could they have asked Putin to get the Ambassador to talk to Trump and his transition team, under the guise of diplomacy, so the Democrats could obtain illegal citizen transcripts to be leaked? You get the Ambassador to phish, by asking questions that can entrap. Trump is a deal maker, so he would not instinctively show this cards at the beginning of negotiations. He won't bite that easy. This scenario needs to be investigated and all Democrats who participated even in the after scam, need to be questioned. Trump may dangle jail to get his agenda passed and let them escape afterwards.
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  7. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

    What happened was the privacy protocol was violated for Trump and his team. They were wired tapped via the Ambassador. Their private citizen transcript was not blacked out, as the law requires.
    How do you know that?

    Coincidentally, a few days before Obama left office, Obama changed the rules allowing all government intelligence agencies to share data.
    Not sharing data is how 9/11 happened.

    As far as Paul Manafort helping Putin, didn't Hillary help Putin when she sold him all that bomb grade uranium?
    Trump and his campaign claim that Clinton “gave” or “handed over” 20 percent of American uranium rights to the Russians. Through the Uranium One deal, the Russian state-owned nuclear energy company does now have control over 20 percent of U.S. uranium extraction capacity. But it cannot export the uranium.

    In 2010, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States approved the sale of the majority of the shares to the Russians. The State Department was one of nine agencies on the committee that approved the deal. The deal was also separately approved by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

    There is no evidence Clinton herself got involved in the deal personally, and it is highly questionable that this deal even rose to the level of the secretary of state. Theoretically, as Schweizer says, Clinton could have intervened. But even then, it ultimately would have been Obama’s decision whether to suspend or block the deal.

    We wavered between Three and Four Pinocchios. Trump so often uses broad-brushed language that pushes him into Four Pinocchio territory, and this is yet another one of those cases. He specifically names Hillary Clinton as the active agent in the Uranium One deal, saying she “gave them” or “handed over” uranium to the Russians, but that is not the case. Then, he further claimed the sale went forward in exchange “for a big payment.” There’s no evidence for that claim either.

    Trump could have avoided so many Pinocchios had he been more careful with the language. For example: “Hillary Clinton’s State Department was one of nine agencies that approved the deal.” Words matter.

    The Russians expanded their nuclear weapons because they had more bomb materials.
    They have no export license, all that uranium is under our control.

    Trump makes no sense in terms of teaming with Putin, since building the military does not help with the Russian plan, as much as weakening the US military as Obama and Hillary did.

    Only if you think the goal is winning a war against the US, which it's not. It's simply to get a strategic and economic advantage. To eliminate sanctions.

    Trump suggests he would be open to lifting sanctions on Russia

    As far as hacking the election, does anyone think it is a little odd, that Hillary won California by millions of votes?
    Not at all, California is a big, blue state.
  8. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Words matter.

    How very last century!
  9. timojin Valued Senior Member

    Why don't they they leave the guy functioning. He was elected , What is this nation to gain in picking dirty underwear, politicians are crooked be it democrats or republicans.
  10. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    #WhatItTakes | #WhatTheyVotedFor

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    I admit, it is an inappropriate picture; Amaro, normally inefficient enough in his government job, takes time out in the middle of a crisis to bawl about romantic jealousy. He might be a fool, but as a character in a story, he is ostensibly noble. That's a little harder to say for Republicans, who log eighty-six percent job approval for Donald Trump; even more so for Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA22), the chairman of the House Permanet Select Committee on Intelligence.

    When it comes to the Russia scandal, Nunes announced in mid-December that he had no intention of even looking into the matter, though he later changed his mind under pressure. Two months later, he tried to exonerate then-National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, shortly before the White House fired him for lying about his communications with Russia.

    By Valentine’s Day, Nunes was making the White House’s arguments about executive privilege, while contacting reporters and trying to wave them off of a controversy he was ostensibly investigating. In fact, the Intelligence Committee chairman has spent the better part of 2017 running interference for Donald Trump—whose presidential transition committee he helped lead.

    And then yesterday happened. As Rachel explained on last night’s show:

    “[Nunes] held not one, but two fairly breathless press conferences alleging … something, he couldn’t quite say what, about the intelligence community and the Trump transition, of which he was an executive member. Things that he had seen, but he could not describe, that made him feel alarm, that made him feel concern, that ought to make us all feel alarm and concern, and they certainly would make us feel those things if only we knew what these things were, but he would not tell us.

    “In fact, he did not even have those things in his possession, and he had not shown them to the rest of the people on his committee, who are participating in this investigation he’s supposed to be leading.”


    Yeah. Republicans. What happens now depends almost entirely on Republicans.

    Naturally, Chairman Nunes is trying to cover himself, apparently apologizing to the Committee↱, by saying↱, "It's a judgment call on my part, At the end of the day, sometimes you make the right decision, sometimes you don't".

    He still didn't cough up the alleged evidence for the Committee.


    Alexander, Peter. "GOP House intel chair Nunes expresses some regret abt going to press". Twitter. 23 March 2017. 23 March 2017.

    Benen, Steve. "House Intel chair trashes what’s left of his credibility". msnbc. 23 March 2017. 23 March 2017.

    Scott, Eugene and Tom LoBlaco. "Nunes apologizes to House Intel Committee, member says". CNN. 23 March 2017. 23 March 2017.
  11. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

    Because he may have committed treason? Because the same hypocrites hounded Hillary for a relatively minor breach in e-mail protocol?
  12. gmilam Valued Senior Member

    Since they are all liars and crooks, we should just accept and not try to change it? What is the nation to gain? Maybe, a functional government. I know, that's a radical concept.
  13. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    #screechingdissonance | #WhatTheyVotedFor

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    The tweet from
    Jake Tapper↱ is straightforward: "Long letter from Roger Stone in my in box".

    The "Dear Friend" salutation suggests the letter is going around. And while it is hard to tell what exactly motivated the latest outburst, Mr. Stone seems to be responding both to Congressional Democrats and a Twitter war he finds himself in the middle of losing. But he wishes to "spank" Congressional Democrats "like children", and notes that, "Schiff looks like a pussy to me". The general purpose of the letter seems to be to confirming any number of suspicions while insisting his conduct is "innocuous".

    Confirming what? Well, he's boasting of his guilt in some places, and tacitly confirming it by insisting that his "Twitter account was clearly hacked", arguing he has been subject to "eavesdropping on my e-mail, phone calls, and texts", and proposing and answering the question, "Why am I certain that I have been unfairly monitored by the deep state?"

    Quite clearly my telephone conversations with president candidate Trump was bugged and recorded. My e-mails and phone conversations with my wife, children grand children, business associates, friends, and hundreds of reporters had been monitored and recorded ....

    (qtd. in Tapper)

    He seems to know he's nailed, because he insists that all of this information only demonstrates his innocence.

    What I don't understand in all of this is not so much the why, but, rather, how people expect to get away with this sort of stuff. There really is a weird naïveté seemingly in effect. It's like how the press covers loose talk among politicians. When it was the campaign, it was one thing—candidate Trump says. When it was the transition, it was another—the president-elect says. And then Donald Trump was inaugurated, and this is a very important threshold—the White House says. So, maybe Trump himself didn't quite get it. And Bannon probably never really knew. But Priebus? Spicer? They really didn't know? And the thing about Roger Stone is that he's been around conservative politics a long time; sure, he's crazy, and all that, and guilt by association with him needs to be more than mere association in order to be proper guilt, but at the same time, he's been around a while, and ought to know a few things about how this works.

    If we give him a benefit of doubt, his behavior is inexplicable. Just as it is, with suspicions so high, his behavior is inexplicable. Perhaps he feels cornered, and expects to be caged. Roger Stone is singing, and the band plays on.

    For now, let us be generous to excess and call it avant-garde.


    Tapper, Jake. "Long letter from Roger Stone in my in box". Twitter. 23 March 2017. 23 March 2017.
  14. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

    No! They are all corrupt, so let's let them be corrupt... Says a supporter of a politician who ran on ending corruption and called his opponent "crooked Hillary".
  15. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Because he may have committed treason, and aided a foreign government in their attempts to attack the United States.
  16. Oystein Registered Senior Member

    Don't try to reason with timojin. It's not possible.
  17. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    #PutiTrump | #WhatTheyVotedFor

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    The daily briefing transcript isn't up, yet. But there is this, coming in via Twitter↱:

    Q: "Can you say unequivocally that Trump associates did not collude w/Russia?"

    Spicer: "A term like 'associates' is a very vague term."

    Transcripts can be important; to wit, Caroline O.↱:

    Spicer: "No, I can't unequivocally say" that associates of Trump never colluded w/Russians on the release of info to damage HRC campaign.

    I mean, we all get the point, right? But these are the days of swine, roses, and that astounding conservative pedantry whereby you can let them spend however long splitting the hair as technically as they might, and you're neither lying nor shafting them when replying that it still doesn't make a difference.

    Left as reported, we should look forward to the transcript in part because it's worth figuring what the White House or other Republican advocates will attempt to seize on for retort.


    O., Caroline. "Spicer". Twitter. 23 March 2017. 23 March 2017.

    —————. "WOW". Twitter. 23 March 2017. 23 March 2017.
  18. Oystein Registered Senior Member

    sculptor and joepistole like this.
  19. timojin Valued Senior Member

    That is a real crap. Sell your nation and your possession.
  20. Oystein Registered Senior Member

    Do you ever make sense? I'm beginning to doubt it.
  21. timojin Valued Senior Member

    I rather be stupid then reason such way
  22. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    Yes, let's have a reality check. You are confusing DNC servers with the private server of Hillary's campaign manager, i.e. Mr. Podesta. Two, it doesn't matter how they got in. They got in, and both private and government entities have traced the hack to the Russian government. The heads of all American intelligence agencies have attested to that fact. The head of the NSA and the FBI attested to that under oath before Congress just a few days ago.

    Except that simply isn't the case. FBI Director Comey testified to that effect just a few days ago under oath and before Congress. That's a reality check comrade. The real news is Trump has lied and he has been unable to offer any evidence to support his assertions just as he was unable to offer any evidence to support his other lies, e.g. the 3 million illegal aliens he alleges voted against him.

    The process of "blacking out" is called masking. And there is no evidence that any incidental communications haven't been properly masked.

    Except, as with your other assertions, there is no evidence to support any of this. The Russian ambassador meets with government officials. But they generally don't meet in secret and then lie about their meetings as Trump's associates have repeatedly done and they generally don't meet that frequently. If there is nothing to hide, then why all the secrecy? Why all the lies?

    And then there is the fact that a number of Trump's associates are on the Russian payroll. Trump himself has taken money from the Russian oligarchs, and Russian oligarchs function as extended members of the Russian government. This is a reality check, remember?

    Repeating lies doesn't make them any less of a lie.

    Except Hillary didn't sell Putin "bomb grade uranium". This is a reality check, remember? Since Russia became a nuclear power, it has always had a large stockpile of uranium. Russia began upgrading its nuclear weapons long before a Russian oligarch purchased a US uranium mining operation. Historically, since the dawn of nuclear arms treaties Russia has always had large uranium stores. Russia's arms expansion began with Putin. It had nothing to do with uranium supplies. Neither the US or Russia suffer from a lack of nuclear weapons.

    Trump's expansion of US military power isn't a threat to Putin if Trump doesn't use it against Putin. Whether you choose to recognize them or not there are many reasons why Putin favors Trump over Clinton. For starters, sanctions, Trump hasn't even recognized Russia's illegal invasion and annexation of neighboring states. And if he doesn't recognize the reasons for the sanctions imposed on Russia, then there is no reason to keep the economic sanctions which have been imposed on Russia. Removal of those sanctions is a big reason for Putin to favor Trump. Additionally, Trump has threatened to withdraw US support for NATO. Putin would love to see the US withdraw from or weaken NATO. Trump has weakened American alliances, that too benefits Putin. So there are many reasons why Putin favors Trump. It's well know Putin hates Clinton for a host of reasons. She is tougher on Putin. She favors sanctions. She favors a stronger NATO. She has pushed for press freedom and democracy in Russia and that directly threatens Putin. Yeah, let's have a reality check here comrade.

    Actually, no. It isn't at all odd Hillary won California. Democratic presidential nominees normally win California by millions of votes. It's a big state. That's the norm. So why would the norm be odd? The fact is the Electoral College is a relic of our slave owning past which was intended to empower slave owning states over free states. The Electoral College is a very undemocratic institution. It disenfranchises millions of voters. If we truly believe in democracy, we should end the Electoral College.

    Here is the thing, you have no evidence to support your contention that there is something wrong with the popular vote, and there is no reason to expect something to be wrong with the popular vote.

    That's quite a conspiracy you've got going there. How about some evidence to support that conspiracy? As with everything else, you have none. Because none exists. The question is why are a number of Trump's closest associates on or have been on the Russian payroll? Why have they held secret meetings with Russian intelligence officers? Why have they lied about those meetings? If they are all routine and above board as you assert, then why hide them, and why lie about them? We know Trump has received large unexplained cash payment from at least one Russian oligarch. Trump needs to come clean about his financial links with Putin as well.

    As for Trump's deal making capabilities, I guess we will soon find out. But at this point, they aren't readily apparent. At this point, it looks like his first major piece of legislation is headed for failure. It looks like Trump's signature piece of legislation may not even make it out of the House, and the House is the most amicable to Trump.
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2017
  23. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

    Do you only believe what you want to believe?

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