Monday, August 19, 2019
BipHoo Company / Flickr Mueller wants to hear from Trump...

#TrumpsTerrifiedOfMueller “if we had confidence that the President clearly did not commit a crime”

Wednesday’s Mueller testimony will have more theatrical implications, but one hopes that some key moments that will define what will likely be the move to further impeachment inquiries, even if they are not yet...
The New York Times / YouTube Mitch McConnell Congratulates Trump The New 1547585756.jpg...

New study finds states need more funding to protect elections, funding McConnell won’t allow

A report released last week from the Brennan Center for Justice, the R Street Institute, the University of Pittsburgh's Institute for Cyber Law, Policy and Security, and the Alliance for Securing Democracy sounds an...
Bloomberg / YouTube Why Robert Mueller Is the Perfect...

The Hitchhikers Guide To Robert Mueller. K.I.S.S.

I just hope that the Democrats didn’t commit the cardinal sin of over hyping Robert Mueller. As Mueller’s actual testimony has loomed ever closer, both committee chairs, Nadler on Judiciary, and Schiff on Intelligence, have done a nice job of trying to manage expectations, saying that they want Mueller to “bring the report alive.” But following the release of the report, and William Barr’s bullshit manipulation of it and continuing through Mueller’s media statement, the Democrats touted Mueller as the man who would bring two US marshals with him who would perp walk Trump out of the Oval Office once Mueller was finished. It ain’t happening. And I’ll tell you what else ain’t happening. These committee members are not going to trick, coerce, intimidate, or strong arm Mueller. Hell, Mueller has been testifying in front of congressional committees for longer than some of the younger members have been walking the earth. He has already stated that his testimony will remain within the boundaries of the four corners of the report, and anyone who marveled at his discipline for the last 2+ years is well served to believe him. Besides, you don’t need Mueller to go beyond the contents of his report, but a few simple ground rules will help to maximize his impact on the public.First, ask simple direct questions, especially questions that incriminate Trump and can be answered “yes” or “no.” This will allow time for more questions, and you can always ask a follow up question requesting him to expand on his answer if necessary. Second, don’t try to get cute or tricky. Don’t play semantic games, Mueller is already an expert interrogator. Don’t bother asking a question like “Director Mueller. Would you have indicted President Trump for obstruction of justice if it were not for that OLC memo?” Thats a great marquee 5:00 p.m. news question, but it’s only going to be answered by, “I’m sorry, but I’m not here to deal in hypothetical questions, Congressman.” The same thing goes for asking questions trying to get Mueller to throw shade all over Barr. Mueller is there for two reasons, to rehabilitate and legitimize the work of his team and himself, and to try to rehabilitate as much as possible toe reputation of the department that Tubby the Ewok has sprayed a fire hose of shit all over. Numero tres,please co-ordinate fer Crissakes! Each member is only going to have five minutes to question Mueller. It is inexcusable that any member ask Mueller a question that has been previously asked by another member. Mueller is going to be well prepared, and as taciturn as hell, so there isn’t going to be that much for him to remember. Besides, he isn’t going to answer a question just because you flip the order of the words around. This isn’t Trump you’re talking to. Number four is for the two committee chairmen, Nadler and Schiff: Be ruthless! The Republicans on the committees don’t want Mueller there in the first place, and they want him answering questions even less. The ranking members are going to interrupt the proceedings every chance they get with objections and arcane points-of-order rules. Deal with them summarily, and shut off the fucking mics if you have to. Mueller is going to adhere rigidly to the agreed upon time limits, […]
USA TODAY / YouTube Attorney General Barr testifies on Mueller 1556796651.jpg...

If you could ask Mueller one Question, what would it be?

This next Wednesday, July 24, 2019, Special Counsel Robert Mueller will be publicly answering Questions before two Committees of Congress:  The Judiciary and the House Intelligence Committees. What Questions would you like to see them ask? ...
Eric Smith / Flickr Robert Mueller x27 s Criminal Past...

The “Mueller factor.”

Set your clocks. One week from tomorrow, July 24th, unless the Democrats in the House once again find a way to snatch-defeat-from-the-jaws-of-victory, Robert Mueller will finally speak his piece, in front of two packed hearing rooms, and an electronic media held hostage by the moment. And then the ball finally starts rolling, one way or the other. Needless to say, the Republicans are scared shitless, although they’d all rather die in harness than say so. The problem for the Republicans is that they aren’t very artful when it comes to deceit, they tend to wear their intentions on their sleeves. Oh sure, they talk a great fight, but with that innocent “Who, me?” look that the dog gives you while he’s standing next to the broken lamp. The GOP’s arrogant, confident, condescending pre-battle trash talk follows two lines. First, they claim that the entire exercise is purely political, theater by the Democrats, since Mueller has already stated that he won’t go beyond the “four corners” of his report, and the report is already public. And the GOP members of the committee are already making threatening baa-baa-baa noises about how they’re going to shred Mueller with their white hot questions, exposing his partisan acts and attitude for what they really are. *sigh* I swear to God, some days it’s an absolute joy to be me. Yes, the Mueller report is public, and has been so for months, but guess what? Am instruction manual came with your surround sound system too, but did you bother to fucking read that? Of course not, that’s what your wife is for, to yell the instructions over to you after your second trip to the ER for self electrocution. Same with the Mueller report, that’s what the media is for. And Robert Mueller is a combat decorated, purple heart veteran. The man has stared down sitting US Presidents, and won. Does anybody honestly thing that Robert Mueller is going to walk into those hearing rooms wearing Depends, because the thought of being confronted by superficial, shallow, strutting little popinjays like Mark Meadows, Matt Gaetz, and Jim Jordan scares the shit out of him? I think not. The media has it right. They are sating that even if Mueller never strays from the “four corners” of his report, the testimony is going to be both powerful, as well as devastating for Trump. People will have no choice, they’ll have to listen. The testimony will be on every TV that is turned on. In the break room at work, in the common rooms on campuses, in bars and restaurants. Mueller’s testimony is being considered a “public service,” even FOX News is going to have to air it. The media has likened Mueller’s testimony to the difference between reading a book and seeing a movie. The visuals make it come alive. But to my mind, the media is missing the most important aspects of this. It isb’t so much a matter of what is being said, it’s a matter of who is saying it, and how it’s said. After all, Stephen Hawking can write a book that mathematically either proves or disproves the existence of God, but you need Bill Nye, the science guy to explain that shit so you can understand it. And as anyone who has ever heard one knows, the best audio books are always the ones […]

Judge Boots Roger Stone Off All Social Media Platforms In Expansion of Gag Order

This is a breaking story, and we don’t have the “why” of it yet, but the Washington Post reports that Judge Amy Berman Jackson has expanded the gag order on Roger Stone, barring the Trump confidant from posting on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. As to Twitter, Stone got barred from that platform earlier this year when he was drunk and tweeting abuse, but he has maintained a presence on the two Zuckerberg sites. A gag order limiting Stone’s public comments about his case or any participants in it already had been in place as U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson said, to try to limit pre-trial publicity that could prejudice his case. He is now barred from posting anything to the social networks. Stone has pleaded not guilty to charges of lying about his efforts to gather information about Democratic Party emails hacked and leaked by Russian operatives in 2016. This is a developing story. It will be updated. Two things this will accomplish: 1) Keep Stone from maligning the entire judicial process and making himself a political martyr; 2) Give Alex Jones, what’s left of him, some red meat to gnaw on. Stone’s latest and largest conspiracy theory is that LBJ murdered JFK, a theme which the ring wing media immediately co-opted and churned into YouTube videos. He’s a piece of work.  
nars co / Flickr Trump tweets overshadowed these major climate...

Trump in a Panic Sweat Posts 13 Lie-Riddled Tweets About – Get This –...

There is nothing more telling than a Donald Trump Tweetstorm. It reveals what he's most afraid of and what is consuming his fevered and demented imagination. So it shouldn't be dismissed when he posts...

Epstein’s role reveals not the only unexploded ordnance in #TrumpRussia

Whether it’s #TrumpRussia, Biglygate, or the reign of POTUS 45*, we have received continuing legal education in lawfare, as more folks read the Mueller report. #TrumpRussia is filled with timebombs, as we’ll eventually see. Epstein’s...

Alex Acosta’s job is safe…Tick-tock-tick-tock

I wrote in an article yesterday about his pathetic one man dog-and-pony show that I had gone on an Official Acosta Resignation (or Termination) Watch. Nothing in the resulting fallout has made me change my mind, but I’ve fine tuned it a little bit. If there’s one thing that a broken down reality show retread like Trump knows, it’s that timing is everything. By ordering Acosta’s paint-by-the-numbers nationally televised self castration yesterday, Trump accomplished two important things. One, he confirmed for himself that he owns Acosta lock, stock, and barrel. If there’s one thing Trump loves almost as much as money, it’s humiliating other people. And nothing gives a two bit bully boy like Trump wood more than kicking an already whipped cur. Two, Trump got a pretty accurate barometer of Acosta’s distraction quotient in the media. And that’s important to Trump. Because in very short order, Trump is going to need a big, fat, honking distraction. Next Wednesday, Robert Mueller has a chock-a-block full day of being beamed from two different house committee hearing rooms into every nook in America with a TV hitched up to cable. It is going to be Robert Mueller from the morning alarm until the last call at the bar. We haven’t seen anything like this since James Comey and Michael Cohen testified. But what actually happened after Comey’s and Cohen’s testimony? Well, post testimony coverage on hearing day centered on explosions, shocking, powerful exchanges or statements that could be quickly and easily found and cut out, and just as easily discussed and dissected by hosts and talking head guests. But the second day turned out to be even worse for Trump. Because in the overnight hours, producers and staff listened more closely to the quieter, less dramatic stuff, stuff that came in between the explosions. And there was some seriously damaging shit in there, which had gone unnoticed in the cacophony of the day before. And it dribble-drabbled out all the next day, with plenty of time for observations of what each thing meant, and why it was so damaging for Trump. Cue Alex Acosta:Enter Stage Left. I figure that the tweet will come at about 5 am eastern time Thursday morning, 6 am at the latest. Late enough to catch massive immediate eyeballs, but early enough to dominate the morning drive time airwaves. We have breaking news this Thursday morning. President Trump just tweeted that he has fired (or accepted the resignation of) embattled Labor Secretary Alex Acosta. Acosta has come under increasing fire in the last week due to his handling blah, blah, blah. Combine that with a sarcastic or personally humiliating tweet about Acosta following immediately, and that should do the trick Alex Acosta will be the banner story at the top of every hour, with up to the minute analysis, and a gleeful concentration on the personal humiliation for Acosta, and his involvement in the Epstein mess. There will be plenty of Robert Mueller, but his story will be below the fold as they say in the newspaper business, and will live in the shadow of the Acosta news. Especially since, having been bombarded with about 18 hours of Mueller the day before, people will be ready for a change of topic, and the media will give it to them. And ifthat happens, you can forget about Friday entirely. Once the Mueller story […]

Epstein can’t be isolated from the story of Trump needing Russian money

We’ve only had a peek at the historically constant appetites of Individual-1 that only became important when he became a “public servant”. That peek got expanded this week. His political base ignores it or even...

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