Author Topic: United States of Russia?  (Read 45574 times)

former player

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #500 on: June 07, 2017, 01:25:48 AM »
I just had the horrible realization that Trump may have to be invited to the 75 year memorial ceremony of D-Day in Normandy in 2019 if he isn't removed out of office by then. Somehow the idea of him being there disgusts me more than anything he's done.

In other news, who's day-drinking the Comey hearing Thursday?
Perk of FIRE.

Also, it will stop me buying a lovely but unnecessary antique mahogany chest at auction that day.
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Kris

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #501 on: June 07, 2017, 04:59:20 AM »
I just had the horrible realization that Trump may have to be invited to the 75 year memorial ceremony of D-Day in Normandy in 2019 if he isn't removed out of office by then. Somehow the idea of him being there disgusts me more than anything he's done.

In other news, who's day-drinking the Comey hearing Thursday?

I was just talking about that with the husband. I work from home, so I'm leaving the possibility open.
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nereo

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #502 on: June 07, 2017, 06:40:10 AM »
Is there some sort of pool?  Certain phrases we drink to... like "I cannot comment or impede an ongoing investigation?"

Do we drink everytime DJT counter-tweets during testimony (perhaps with: Lie/Lies, MSM or Showboat?)?

what's a good way of 'playing along' tomorrow?
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PathtoFIRE

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #503 on: June 07, 2017, 09:19:36 AM »
...And then Spicer followed that up with "The president and a small group of people know exactly what he meant".
Small Group = ?
Team of psychiatrists?
Russian handlers?
Alien overlords?
Small group of people who tweet from the toilet at all hours of the day/night?

Paul der Krake

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #504 on: June 07, 2017, 09:29:45 AM »
Is there some sort of pool?  Certain phrases we drink to... like "I cannot comment or impede an ongoing investigation?"

Do we drink everytime DJT counter-tweets during testimony (perhaps with: Lie/Lies, MSM or Showboat?)?

what's a good way of 'playing along' tomorrow?
Drink on:
- the American People
- Putin
- imminent threat

Finish your glass on:
- Maralago
- Comrade
- Alec Baldwin

Riot, burn down the bar and the next 4 city blocks:
- golden shower

Kris

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #505 on: June 07, 2017, 09:38:28 AM »
Is there some sort of pool?  Certain phrases we drink to... like "I cannot comment or impede an ongoing investigation?"

Do we drink everytime DJT counter-tweets during testimony (perhaps with: Lie/Lies, MSM or Showboat?)?

what's a good way of 'playing along' tomorrow?
Drink on:
- the American People
- Putin
- imminent threat

Finish your glass on:
- Maralago
- Comrade
- Alec Baldwin

Riot, burn down the bar and the next 4 city blocks:
- golden shower

I like it.
Please note: Libertarian4321 did not vote for either Hillary or Trump. He voted for Gary Johnson, who was the Libertarian candidate.

Glenstache

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #506 on: June 07, 2017, 09:49:47 AM »
Is there some sort of pool?  Certain phrases we drink to... like "I cannot comment or impede an ongoing investigation?"

Do we drink everytime DJT counter-tweets during testimony (perhaps with: Lie/Lies, MSM or Showboat?)?

what's a good way of 'playing along' tomorrow?
Drink on:
- the American People
- Putin
- imminent threat

Finish your glass on:
- Maralago
- Comrade
- Alec Baldwin

Riot, burn down the bar and the next 4 city blocks:
- golden shower

Nobody has said it, but I naturally assume that the drink is vodka, no?

MasterStache

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #507 on: June 07, 2017, 11:12:49 AM »
Is there some sort of pool?  Certain phrases we drink to... like "I cannot comment or impede an ongoing investigation?"

Do we drink everytime DJT counter-tweets during testimony (perhaps with: Lie/Lies, MSM or Showboat?)?

what's a good way of 'playing along' tomorrow?
Drink on:
- the American People
- Putin
- imminent threat

Finish your glass on:
- Maralago
- Comrade
- Alec Baldwin

Riot, burn down the bar and the next 4 city blocks:
- golden shower

What about crowd size or anything in reference to winning the election?

Inaya

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #508 on: June 07, 2017, 11:39:07 AM »
Is there some sort of pool?  Certain phrases we drink to... like "I cannot comment or impede an ongoing investigation?"

Do we drink everytime DJT counter-tweets during testimony (perhaps with: Lie/Lies, MSM or Showboat?)?

what's a good way of 'playing along' tomorrow?
Drink on:
- the American People
- Putin
- imminent threat

Finish your glass on:
- Maralago
- Comrade
- Alec Baldwin

Riot, burn down the bar and the next 4 city blocks:
- golden shower

What about crowd size or anything in reference to winning the election?
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bacchi

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #509 on: June 07, 2017, 12:39:10 PM »
Can we start early with Comey's opening statement?

RangerOne

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #510 on: June 07, 2017, 05:42:09 PM »
Just got done reading Comey's prepared statement. His interactions with Trump sound like a bad mafia movie.

Asking repeatedly for loyalty. Dancing around until they could awkwardly conclude a conversation that made Trump feel okay "Honest Loyalty..." Questioning whether Comey wanted a job that was basically supposed to be a given, so a typical vague allusion to saying you should only stick around if you will be loyal.

Then proceeding to intermittently politely request that the FBI give up their investigation and publicly remind us that he isn't himself being investigated.

Nothing really surprising, though its interesting to get a visual of how it went down and to hear snippets of the petty dance that Trump likes to do.

But apparently 40% of the country doesn't give a shit that this president has pretty much zero ethical boundaries. These conversations sound like one of those don't do this training videos that every corporate office puts out yearly, to remind its employees how not to act.

Its only been 4 or 5 months and having to hear about this wannbe Oligarch parade around the white house  like a spoiled child with an overzealous Republican agenda is annoying and disheartening as the day it was all set in motion.

If ever a president were deserving of no more than a one and done term in office its this guy. Impeachment is too unlikely. Hopefully the Repubs get what they feel they need over 4 years so we don't have to suffer 8 and they can gracefully let the next campaign crumble. Not optimistic about that either though.

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #511 on: June 08, 2017, 06:02:16 AM »
If ever a president were deserving of no more than a one and done term in office its this guy. Impeachment is too unlikely. Hopefully the Repubs get what they feel they need over 4 years so we don't have to suffer 8 and they can gracefully let the next campaign crumble. Not optimistic about that either though.

Personally, I'd love to see Trump get primaried and replaced in 2020 which ought to piss off enough of the diehard Trump supporters to squash Republican turnout. Either way, though, if the Dems can't convince the country that they have a better candidate on offer in 2020, we might as well go ahead and sign their death warrant, at least in the red states.
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MasterStache

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #512 on: June 08, 2017, 07:34:01 AM »
Trump has stated he will be tweeting during the Comey testimony. Lawyers are worried it will get him into even more legal trouble. Man this ought to be good. Time for the popcorn.

DavidAnnArbor

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #513 on: June 08, 2017, 07:53:29 AM »
At what time does the Comey testimony start and where can you watch it?

Inaya

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #514 on: June 08, 2017, 07:57:05 AM »
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Paul der Krake

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #515 on: June 08, 2017, 07:57:33 AM »

nereo

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #516 on: June 08, 2017, 08:12:01 AM »
"Do not confuse complexity with superiority"

Inaya

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #517 on: June 08, 2017, 08:13:06 AM »
Trump has stated he will be tweeting during the Comey testimony. Lawyers are worried it will get him into even more legal trouble. Man this ought to be good. Time for the popcorn.
I don't have access to Twitter right now. Anyone feel like posting tweets here (assuming his handlers don't tie him up and sit on him)?
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nereo

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #518 on: June 08, 2017, 08:51:24 AM »
Trump has stated he will be tweeting during the Comey testimony. Lawyers are worried it will get him into even more legal trouble. Man this ought to be good. Time for the popcorn.
I don't have access to Twitter right now. Anyone feel like posting tweets here (assuming his handlers don't tie him up and sit on him)?
So far he's not tweeting.  Nothing since yesterday.  Maybe cooler heads have secured his phone for the time being?
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Paul der Krake

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #519 on: June 08, 2017, 09:09:07 AM »
Comey be like


Dabnasty

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #520 on: June 08, 2017, 12:27:08 PM »
Wasn't able to watch the hearing. Any important takeaways? Opinions?
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DavidAnnArbor

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #521 on: June 08, 2017, 12:36:18 PM »
Wasn't able to watch the hearing. Any important takeaways? Opinions?

I felt like Comey had this, "Gee gosh golly Trump asked me about stopping the investigation into Michael Flynn" quality while at the same time he felt perfectly fine about criticizing Clinton's private email server when admitting that he wasn't going to file any wrongdoing charges, and also just days before the election he influences the election by making the earthshattering announcement that he was reopening the email investigation because Weiner's laptop had some duplicate Clinton emails via Huma Abedin.

Lagom

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #522 on: June 08, 2017, 12:39:51 PM »
Wasn't able to watch the hearing. Any important takeaways? Opinions?

The initial pundit take seems to be that Comey aptly backed up his statements and the republicans really couldn't poke holes in any of it. These included opining that he was fired because of the Russia investigation, that Trump demanded loyalty and indirectly asked him to end his investigation prematurely, and somewhat amazingly (to me), outright calling Trump a liar. He also admitted that he had indeed told Trump that he was not personally under investigation (at that time). In any case, few seem to think this will change any minds on the side of the GOP, so at most this is just more fuel for future proceedings if the Dems take over the house in 2018.

deadlymonkey

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #523 on: June 08, 2017, 12:53:38 PM »
Wasn't able to watch the hearing. Any important takeaways? Opinions?

Bottom line is that Trump is most likely a liar (big surprise) and that he probably did obstruct justice in regards to the Flynn Investigation.  Other takeaway is that Comey said Loretta Lynch asked him to refer to the Clinton email investigation as a matter, not an investigation.  Never asked him to stop it or alter trajectory, but just change the noun.  He did, but it didn't matter since reporters kept calling it an investigation.

It is being spun right now by Paul Ryan as "Trump doesn't know what he is doing, it was a mistake."
Trump's Lawyer:  "Comey is a LIAR with pants on fire!"
Fox News:  But But Hillary.

Lagom

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #524 on: June 08, 2017, 01:07:46 PM »
Wasn't able to watch the hearing. Any important takeaways? Opinions?

Bottom line is that Trump is most likely a liar (big surprise) and that he probably did obstruct justice in regards to the Flynn Investigation.  Other takeaway is that Comey said Loretta Lynch asked him to refer to the Clinton email investigation as a matter, not an investigation.  Never asked him to stop it or alter trajectory, but just change the noun.  He did, but it didn't matter since reporters kept calling it an investigation.

It is being spun right now by Paul Ryan as "Trump doesn't know what he is doing, it was a mistake."
Trump's Lawyer:  "Comey is a LIAR with pants on fire!"
Fox News:  But But Hillary.

Gotta love that general incompetence is now being used as a supposedly legitimate defense.

Kris

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #525 on: June 08, 2017, 01:10:52 PM »
Wasn't able to watch the hearing. Any important takeaways? Opinions?

Bottom line is that Trump is most likely a liar (big surprise) and that he probably did obstruct justice in regards to the Flynn Investigation.  Other takeaway is that Comey said Loretta Lynch asked him to refer to the Clinton email investigation as a matter, not an investigation.  Never asked him to stop it or alter trajectory, but just change the noun.  He did, but it didn't matter since reporters kept calling it an investigation.

It is being spun right now by Paul Ryan as "Trump doesn't know what he is doing, it was a mistake."
Trump's Lawyer:  "Comey is a LIAR with pants on fire!"
Fox News:  But But Hillary.

Gotta love that general incompetence is now being used as a supposedly legitimate defense.

Only when it's a Republican.
Please note: Libertarian4321 did not vote for either Hillary or Trump. He voted for Gary Johnson, who was the Libertarian candidate.

nereo

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #526 on: June 08, 2017, 01:46:44 PM »
After watching the testimony I've come to the conclusion that there could be several possibilities

1) Trump legitimately didn't know what he was doing was inappropriate.  This narrative is currently being pushed by Paul Ryan
2) Trump knew enough to know this was entirely inappropriate, but he did it anyway.  This narrative is backed up by the fact that he asked everyone, including Attorney General Sessions to leave the room.
3) Trump was attempting to stop an ongoing investigation because he did not want them to find out whatever there is to find out.  Here we have lots of smoke but the root cause - if there is one - hasn't been made public. 

I've listed them in order of severity.  Starting with (1) - this is worrisome because it suggests that the POTUS doesn't have a basic understanding of how our government works nor how his actions would be interpreted. The current defense that "he's inexperienced, it's ok" rings hollow to me, and it suggests that we should excuse his actions as an innocent newbie mistake.  Two problems I have with this - one not one single person of at least a half-dozen high-ranking people (including the US attorney general) made any move to stop this closed-door meeting. second, "not knowing better" is not an excuse.  I'm reminded of the pathetic first attempts of managment to shrug off sexual harassment claims saying 'what, i didn't know what i was doing was inappropriate - i just made a comment about her bra".  Ignorance is not a defense for something that should be obvious.

(2) More troubling is the idea that, even though there "may be no 'there' there" DJT knew at some level that his requests were on shaky moral ground but he pressed ahead anyway. In other words, he's so convinced that nothing below-grade happened that he just doesn't give a damn about how he goes about trying to end the whole thing.  This involves an incredible amount of hubris ("Flynn's a great guy - I'm sure there's nothing there even I don't know about") and a complete disrespect for independent investigations. At a minimum it suggests that DJT won't even consider the possibility that the Russians may be craftier than at least one of his staff.

Finally there's the most troubling option (3), that this is in fact at attempt to obfuscate the truth.  Not much was learned from this hearing to put this theory to bed, but nothing Comey said confirms it either.  one interesting factoid is that Comey called out the NY Times expo as being largely false, but as expected would not say what exactly they got wrong nor what the FBI knows (or knew at the time of his firing) - for that we'll have to wait for when/if Mueller makes his report public.  I'm still deeply troubled by this option, as there's just so much damn smoke.  But, is the smoke largely the result of arrogant rookie pols falling into the laps of seasoned Russian opporatives, or is it more deliberate and sinister.
I guess we'll have to wait and see.
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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #527 on: June 08, 2017, 03:07:18 PM »
It's obstruction of justice.  I asked the investigator to stop investigating.  He didn't.  I fired his ass.

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #528 on: June 08, 2017, 03:18:08 PM »
It's obstruction of justice.  I asked the investigator to stop investigating.  He didn't.  I fired his ass.

The reason this isn't an impeachable offense is that he didn't order him to stop the investigation.  He said he hoped he would drop the investigation, instead of telling him to drop the investigation, and that subtle difference is why today's proceedings haven't sparked an impeachment hearing. 

Apparently, asking someone to do something illegal is legal, but telling him to do something illegal is illegal.  I know that I personally have a hard time deciphering when my boss is asking me to do something vs when he is telling me to do something.

RangerOne

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #529 on: June 08, 2017, 03:47:58 PM »
Ignorance is absolutely no defense here. Though it is no surprise they will play that card and many others, like dragging Comey needlessly through quesetions about Clinton's emails, to mitigate the weight of the fact that we have a president who respect 0 ethical boundaries. Honestly who gives 2 fucks about Obama or Clinton's emails anymore. Why even waste the breath.

But its absolute bullshit that he didn't know this is wrong. He just doesn't care. Comey directly told him that what he was asking is wrong. Comey's words,

No I cannot be "loyal", the FBI must act independently for reasons X, Y and Z.

Trump:
But I need loyalty...

There, that is all any average person would need to know to realize they may be crossing some ethical boundaries. He has plenty of lawyers of officials he could have bounced that off of after their first dinner. Trump knew exactly what he was doing in so far as he wanted the FBI to drop any negative investigation of him or his team. And he wanted to Comey to stay out of his business and not make him look bad, or you know be loyal jerk-off like everyone in his twisted family...

The fact that he though firing Comey would make things easier just makes him completely incompetent or petty. I lean towards him being so petty it makes him do incompetent impulsive things to keep his ego from caving in. The sad part is the Republicans will defend him as long as his presidency suits their ends and or he retains the majority support of the Republican base.

I in the recent past wanted to give his kids the benefit of the doubt. They at the very least all appear to be brighter than their dad and by themselves probably wouldn't be all bad people. But their shameless covering for Trumps consistent unethical behavior is damning when it comes to taking any of them seriously.

RangerOne

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #530 on: June 08, 2017, 04:09:07 PM »
It's obstruction of justice.  I asked the investigator to stop investigating.  He didn't.  I fired his ass.

The reason this isn't an impeachable offense is that he didn't order him to stop the investigation.  He said he hoped he would drop the investigation, instead of telling him to drop the investigation, and that subtle difference is why today's proceedings haven't sparked an impeachment hearing. 

Apparently, asking someone to do something illegal is legal, but telling him to do something illegal is illegal.  I know that I personally have a hard time deciphering when my boss is asking me to do something vs when he is telling me to do something.

Ethically Trump has crossed enough boundaries to where is completely impeachable if there were the political will to proceed with impeachment. Never going to happen with his own party in control though. Impeachment is political due to the fact that the constitution is open to the prevailing interpretation by congress which need not require the a president to commit an indictable crime.

Committing an indictable crime on Trumps part would however remove the likely Republican interpretation of the constitution that is in fact a requirement to proceed.

Even then its possible if public opinion remained on Trumps side Repubs could drag their feet. Then it seems the President is more or less free to absolve himself of any charges of a crime against the US not brought against him through a process of impeachment.

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #531 on: June 08, 2017, 06:04:53 PM »
Wasn't able to watch the hearing. Any important takeaways? Opinions?

Bottom line is that Trump is most likely a liar (big surprise) and that he probably did obstruct justice in regards to the Flynn Investigation.  Other takeaway is that Comey said Loretta Lynch asked him to refer to the Clinton email investigation as a matter, not an investigation.  Never asked him to stop it or alter trajectory, but just change the noun.  He did, but it didn't matter since reporters kept calling it an investigation.

It is being spun right now by Paul Ryan as "Trump doesn't know what he is doing, it was a mistake."
Trump's Lawyer:  "Comey is a LIAR with pants on fire!"
Fox News:  But But Hillary.

Gotta love that general incompetence is now being used as a supposedly legitimate defense.

Only when it's a Republican.

I don't think his being Republican is related.  His biggest selling point for the election was that Trump had no idea what he was doing.  It was what he showed people over and over at every chance.  Continuing to demonstrate wild incompetence is continuing to play his base.

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #532 on: June 08, 2017, 07:31:37 PM »
Wasn't able to watch the hearing. Any important takeaways? Opinions?

Bottom line is that Trump is most likely a liar (big surprise) and that he probably did obstruct justice in regards to the Flynn Investigation.  Other takeaway is that Comey said Loretta Lynch asked him to refer to the Clinton email investigation as a matter, not an investigation.  Never asked him to stop it or alter trajectory, but just change the noun.  He did, but it didn't matter since reporters kept calling it an investigation.

It is being spun right now by Paul Ryan as "Trump doesn't know what he is doing, it was a mistake."
Trump's Lawyer:  "Comey is a LIAR with pants on fire!"
Fox News:  But But Hillary.

Gotta love that general incompetence is now being used as a supposedly legitimate defense.

Only when it's a Republican.

I don't think his being Republican is related.  His biggest selling point for the election was that Trump had no idea what he was doing.  It was what he showed people over and over at every chance.  Continuing to demonstrate wild incompetence is continuing to play his base.

yes. But Democrats still have a tiny bit of shame. I do not think they would use this excuse with a straight face.
Please note: Libertarian4321 did not vote for either Hillary or Trump. He voted for Gary Johnson, who was the Libertarian candidate.

DavidAnnArbor

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #533 on: June 09, 2017, 06:06:42 AM »

The reason this isn't an impeachable offense is that he didn't order him to stop the investigation.  He said he hoped he would drop the investigation, instead of telling him to drop the investigation, and that subtle difference is why today's proceedings haven't sparked an impeachment hearing. 


Yes, telling someone you “hope” they’ll do something can support an obstruction of justice case.

https://www.themarshallproject.org/documents/3861627-United-States-of-America-v-Collin-McDonald?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter&utm_source=opening-statement&utm_term=newsletter-20170609-774#.a1HAypq6a

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #534 on: June 09, 2017, 08:28:54 AM »
Interesting to see that Comey felt the need to log all correspondence with Trump after meeting him for the very first time. This alone speaks volumes about Trump's character.

MasterStache

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #535 on: June 09, 2017, 09:20:59 AM »
Interesting to see that Comey felt the need to log all correspondence with Trump after meeting him for the very first time. This alone speaks volumes about Trump's character.

He is a compulsive liar. Not too difficult to make that observation. I would be writing everything down too. And probably recording it and leaking it to the press.   

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #536 on: June 09, 2017, 09:30:49 AM »
This Comey quote from the testimony yesterday should not be lost in the partisan fracas. It is pretty important and stands on its own.

Quote
"There should be no fuzz on this whatsoever. The Russians interfered in our election during the 2016 cycle. They did it with purpose, they did it with sophistication. They did it with overwhelming technical efforts and measures driven from the top of that government. There's no fuzz on that. It's not a close call. That happened. That's about as unfake as you can possibly get and it is very, very serious, which is why it's so refreshing to see a bipartisan focus on that. Because this is about America."

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #537 on: June 09, 2017, 01:12:20 PM »
This Comey quote from the testimony yesterday should not be lost in the partisan fracas. It is pretty important and stands on its own.

Quote
"There should be no fuzz on this whatsoever. The Russians interfered in our election during the 2016 cycle. They did it with purpose, they did it with sophistication. They did it with overwhelming technical efforts and measures driven from the top of that government. There's no fuzz on that. It's not a close call. That happened. That's about as unfake as you can possibly get and it is very, very serious, which is why it's so refreshing to see a bipartisan focus on that. Because this is about America."

This is what has frustrated me so much about this whole damn thing - the WH is obsessed with leaks to the press, and the GOP keeps coming back to HRC's email server, while the Dems are acutely focused on the whole obstruction-of-justice thing.

To me, the single most important thing about this is the fact that a hostile nation successfully monkeyed with our entire electoral process.
That's become secondary to all parties involved.  WTF!!?
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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #538 on: June 09, 2017, 05:35:19 PM »
Interesting to see that Comey felt the need to log all correspondence with Trump after meeting him for the very first time. This alone speaks volumes about Trump's character.

He actually explained the progression to the point of logging pretty clearly towards the end. It was his first official meetings odd nature that clearly triggered the notes.

He noted before that meeting on 2 or 3 separate occasions Trump had said to him directly in public settings that he hoped he would stay on as FBI director.

You don't even have to read between the lines or know Trump is a compulsive liar. He was clearly being brought into a situation where it was likely his conversations with Trump would be used in a way that would adversely affect his job and the current investigation.  Any diligent and careful person would have recommended taken notes.

I am happy to see those notes and his cautious reporting carry so much credibility. You notice not a single republic of note question his credibility. They only picked at his interpretation of events. I have always heard it was recommended to take notes if for instance you are getting verbally abused at say work but i always assumed it would be taken as not much better than your word versus theirs. But I can really see the value of that diligence in this case as a tool to defend your integrity and experience.

Only Trump was dumb enough to call Comey a liar. Trumps lying about such things is so compulsive I think it is literally a built in defense mechanism for his ego that requires no thought or purpose. He simply cant handle the fact that he did something wrong so instead of taking an ounce of responsibility he will just say its all lies...

I feel so sorry for everyone that has to deal with this jerk off.

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #539 on: June 09, 2017, 05:55:31 PM »
This Comey quote from the testimony yesterday should not be lost in the partisan fracas. It is pretty important and stands on its own.

Quote
"There should be no fuzz on this whatsoever. The Russians interfered in our election during the 2016 cycle. They did it with purpose, they did it with sophistication. They did it with overwhelming technical efforts and measures driven from the top of that government. There's no fuzz on that. It's not a close call. That happened. That's about as unfake as you can possibly get and it is very, very serious, which is why it's so refreshing to see a bipartisan focus on that. Because this is about America."

This is what has frustrated me so much about this whole damn thing - the WH is obsessed with leaks to the press, and the GOP keeps coming back to HRC's email server, while the Dems are acutely focused on the whole obstruction-of-justice thing.

To me, the single most important thing about this is the fact that a hostile nation successfully monkeyed with our entire electoral process.
That's become secondary to all parties involved.  WTF!!?

These are partisan oversight committees. The real investigation is being handled by the FBI which is anything help confirm for me that they are mostly unbiased on their to bring charges against anyone they feel committed a crime against the US.

The congressional and house oversight committees appear to simply be the usual circus side show meant only to garner political capital and trying rally public opinion to their side.

It is absolutely purely a matter of competing partisan narratives and that's all it can be. Sadly you have to cross this political bridge to invoke impeachment.

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #540 on: June 09, 2017, 06:27:47 PM »
This Comey quote from the testimony yesterday should not be lost in the partisan fracas. It is pretty important and stands on its own.

Quote
"There should be no fuzz on this whatsoever. The Russians interfered in our election during the 2016 cycle. They did it with purpose, they did it with sophistication. They did it with overwhelming technical efforts and measures driven from the top of that government. There's no fuzz on that. It's not a close call. That happened. That's about as unfake as you can possibly get and it is very, very serious, which is why it's so refreshing to see a bipartisan focus on that. Because this is about America."

This is what has frustrated me so much about this whole damn thing - the WH is obsessed with leaks to the press, and the GOP keeps coming back to HRC's email server, while the Dems are acutely focused on the whole obstruction-of-justice thing.

To me, the single most important thing about this is the fact that a hostile nation successfully monkeyed with our entire electoral process.
That's become secondary to all parties involved.  WTF!!?

These are partisan oversight committees. The real investigation is being handled by the FBI which is anything help confirm for me that they are mostly unbiased on their to bring charges against anyone they feel committed a crime against the US.

The congressional and house oversight committees appear to simply be the usual circus side show meant only to garner political capital and trying rally public opinion to their side.

It is absolutely purely a matter of competing partisan narratives and that's all it can be. Sadly you have to cross this political bridge to invoke impeachment.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but the FBI only investigates US citizens on domestic soil, and wouldn't have jurisdiction to investigate individuals with Russian diplomacy papers.  The NSA and CIA would be the ones investigating those folks.  Not that the FBI isn't looking into contacts with the Trump campaign (Comey and Mueller have said as much) - just wondering how much investigating is being done in the dark by forces we may never see or know about.
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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #541 on: June 09, 2017, 09:45:28 PM »
This thing just keeps getting weirder and weirder...

From the AP
Quote
The hard-charging New York lawyer President Trump chose to represent him in the Russia investigation has prominent clients with ties to the Kremlin, a striking pick for a president trying to escape the persistent cloud that has trailed his administration.

Marc E. Kasowitz’s clients include Oleg Deripaska, a Russian oligarch who is close to President Vladimir Putin and has done business with Trump’s former campaign manager. Kasowitz also represents Sberbank, Russia’s largest state-owned bank, U.S. court records show.
Shouldn't this have come up while going through the hiring phase??

DJT:  So people keep trying to tie me to Russia.  I keep telling them I've got nothing to do with Russia

Kasowitz: No problem, I'm very close to some powerful people in the Russian Government. 

DJT: You're hired!
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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #542 on: June 10, 2017, 10:41:20 AM »
From the AP
Quote
The hard-charging New York lawyer President Trump chose to represent him in the Russia investigation has prominent clients with ties to the Kremlin, a striking pick for a president trying to escape the persistent cloud that has trailed his administration.

Marc E. Kasowitz’s clients include Oleg Deripaska, a Russian oligarch who is close to President Vladimir Putin and has done business with Trump’s former campaign manager. Kasowitz also represents Sberbank, Russia’s largest state-owned bank, U.S. court records show.

Isn't it cute how the press insists on referring to Russian 1%ers as "oligarchs" but treat ours like celebrities?
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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #543 on: June 10, 2017, 10:55:29 AM »
From the AP
Quote
The hard-charging New York lawyer President Trump chose to represent him in the Russia investigation has prominent clients with ties to the Kremlin, a striking pick for a president trying to escape the persistent cloud that has trailed his administration.

Marc E. Kasowitz’s clients include Oleg Deripaska, a Russian oligarch who is close to President Vladimir Putin and has done business with Trump’s former campaign manager. Kasowitz also represents Sberbank, Russia’s largest state-owned bank, U.S. court records show.

Isn't it cute how the press insists on referring to Russian 1%ers as "oligarchs" but treat ours like celebrities?
I don't feel most "1%ers" in the US can be considered oligarchs.  The overwhelming majority are working professionals earning a few hundred $k/year.

As for the 0.01%ers... yeah, we have a few notables that seem to rise to oligarch-like status; the Koch brothers, Adelson, etc.  These people get high-ranking pols to sit down with them for contributions of a few million each cycle. In the last cycle we've seen several be given high-profile positions (DeVos, McMahan)  But true Russian oligarchs are in a completely higher league of mingling business with politics.
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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #544 on: June 11, 2017, 09:43:34 AM »
Correct me if I'm wrong, but the FBI only investigates US citizens on domestic soil, and wouldn't have jurisdiction to investigate individuals with Russian diplomacy papers.  The NSA and CIA would be the ones investigating those folks.  Not that the FBI isn't looking into contacts with the Trump campaign (Comey and Mueller have said as much) - just wondering how much investigating is being done in the dark by forces we may never see or know about.

The NSA is an espionage organization, while the CIA is an espionage + covert action organization. They gather, analyze, and disseminate intelligence information. Neither has any criminal investigation component or charter, with the exception of performing counterintelligence (CI) investigations to ferret out moles/leakers/etc. But even in those instances, any information gathered in a CI investigation would be shared with the FBI for the criminal aspect and eventual criminal charges and prosecution. The FBI's National Security division does, in fact, have jurisdiction over watching foreign "diplomats" operating on American soil. So, the CIA, NSA, and other intel agencies would not be conducting any investigations of their own. They would only support the FBI in things like technical matters (for example, if the FBI wanted some help setting up technical surveillance or similar situations), providing background info on foreign diplomats being watched, and so on.

It's a weird and imperfect separation between what the FBI and CIA can do and where -- a legacy of J. Edgar Hoover's insistence on not giving up the FBI's "turf" back when the fledgling CIA was being launched in 1947. And Hoover largely got what he wanted because of his power back then (particularly the dirt he held against politicians at the time), even though most felt it would unduly tie the hands of the CIA to make that weird separation. And that separation did harm the nation (hello, 9/11 and lack of information-sharing between the FBI and CIA... I'm looking at you). Most people believe the CIA wasn't given this jurisdiction because we, as Americans, had such a strong revulsion against Stasi-like state police and domestic intelligence gathering following WWII, but that was more like 1% of the issue, while Hoover's turf claims was 99%.
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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #545 on: June 12, 2017, 09:32:25 AM »
From the AP
Quote
The hard-charging New York lawyer President Trump chose to represent him in the Russia investigation has prominent clients with ties to the Kremlin, a striking pick for a president trying to escape the persistent cloud that has trailed his administration.

Marc E. Kasowitz’s clients include Oleg Deripaska, a Russian oligarch who is close to President Vladimir Putin and has done business with Trump’s former campaign manager. Kasowitz also represents Sberbank, Russia’s largest state-owned bank, U.S. court records show.

Isn't it cute how the press insists on referring to Russian 1%ers as "oligarchs" but treat ours like celebrities?
I don't feel most "1%ers" in the US can be considered oligarchs.  The overwhelming majority are working professionals earning a few hundred $k/year.

As for the 0.01%ers... yeah, we have a few notables that seem to rise to oligarch-like status; the Koch brothers, Adelson, etc.  These people get high-ranking pols to sit down with them for contributions of a few million each cycle. In the last cycle we've seen several be given high-profile positions (DeVos, McMahan)  But true Russian oligarchs are in a completely higher league of mingling business with politics.

...Bloomberg, Steyer, Soros....


(let's not pretend it's a right-wing phenomenon, no?)
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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #546 on: June 12, 2017, 10:44:09 AM »
From the AP
Quote
The hard-charging New York lawyer President Trump chose to represent him in the Russia investigation has prominent clients with ties to the Kremlin, a striking pick for a president trying to escape the persistent cloud that has trailed his administration.

Marc E. Kasowitz’s clients include Oleg Deripaska, a Russian oligarch who is close to President Vladimir Putin and has done business with Trump’s former campaign manager. Kasowitz also represents Sberbank, Russia’s largest state-owned bank, U.S. court records show.

Isn't it cute how the press insists on referring to Russian 1%ers as "oligarchs" but treat ours like celebrities?
I don't feel most "1%ers" in the US can be considered oligarchs.  The overwhelming majority are working professionals earning a few hundred $k/year.

As for the 0.01%ers... yeah, we have a few notables that seem to rise to oligarch-like status; the Koch brothers, Adelson, etc.  These people get high-ranking pols to sit down with them for contributions of a few million each cycle. In the last cycle we've seen several be given high-profile positions (DeVos, McMahan)  But true Russian oligarchs are in a completely higher league of mingling business with politics.

...Bloomberg, Steyer, Soros....


(let's not pretend it's a right-wing phenomenon, no?)
Of course - never meant to imply that spending money for influence was exclusive to one party (guilty of picking only the most recent examples), but it's gross hyperbole to equate the level of political influence these people have with the Russian oligarchs.
There's simply no contest.
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RangerOne

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #547 on: June 12, 2017, 12:27:07 PM »
This Comey quote from the testimony yesterday should not be lost in the partisan fracas. It is pretty important and stands on its own.

Quote
"There should be no fuzz on this whatsoever. The Russians interfered in our election during the 2016 cycle. They did it with purpose, they did it with sophistication. They did it with overwhelming technical efforts and measures driven from the top of that government. There's no fuzz on that. It's not a close call. That happened. That's about as unfake as you can possibly get and it is very, very serious, which is why it's so refreshing to see a bipartisan focus on that. Because this is about America."

This is what has frustrated me so much about this whole damn thing - the WH is obsessed with leaks to the press, and the GOP keeps coming back to HRC's email server, while the Dems are acutely focused on the whole obstruction-of-justice thing.

To me, the single most important thing about this is the fact that a hostile nation successfully monkeyed with our entire electoral process.
That's become secondary to all parties involved.  WTF!!?

These are partisan oversight committees. The real investigation is being handled by the FBI which is anything help confirm for me that they are mostly unbiased on their to bring charges against anyone they feel committed a crime against the US.

The congressional and house oversight committees appear to simply be the usual circus side show meant only to garner political capital and trying rally public opinion to their side.

It is absolutely purely a matter of competing partisan narratives and that's all it can be. Sadly you have to cross this political bridge to invoke impeachment.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but the FBI only investigates US citizens on domestic soil, and wouldn't have jurisdiction to investigate individuals with Russian diplomacy papers.  The NSA and CIA would be the ones investigating those folks.  Not that the FBI isn't looking into contacts with the Trump campaign (Comey and Mueller have said as much) - just wondering how much investigating is being done in the dark by forces we may never see or know about.

I would guess the technical application of the FBI to investigate Trumps campaign comes under the mandate to discover if those Americans involved took actions that did harm to America. Criminal or otherwise. That fact that the method of harm was collusion with a foreign government is some what incidental.

Initial information gathering that triggered the FBI investigation, to my recollection of public information, was incidental intelligence gathering by the NSA which routinely monitors foreign communications with Americans. Hence all the unmasking stuff. Of course initially the FBI wouldn't have been doing any such monitoring since they don't investigate foreign communications.

Moving forward though, the FBI may gather some intelligence through the NSA or CIA, but I would expect that the FBI itself and maybe home land security or the only appropriate agencies to investigate Americans and harm they may have done.

The CIA is probably least involved since they mainly operate on a person to person level foreign intelligence gathering.

RangerOne

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #548 on: June 12, 2017, 12:47:28 PM »
From the AP
Quote
The hard-charging New York lawyer President Trump chose to represent him in the Russia investigation has prominent clients with ties to the Kremlin, a striking pick for a president trying to escape the persistent cloud that has trailed his administration.

Marc E. Kasowitz’s clients include Oleg Deripaska, a Russian oligarch who is close to President Vladimir Putin and has done business with Trump’s former campaign manager. Kasowitz also represents Sberbank, Russia’s largest state-owned bank, U.S. court records show.

Isn't it cute how the press insists on referring to Russian 1%ers as "oligarchs" but treat ours like celebrities?
I don't feel most "1%ers" in the US can be considered oligarchs.  The overwhelming majority are working professionals earning a few hundred $k/year.

As for the 0.01%ers... yeah, we have a few notables that seem to rise to oligarch-like status; the Koch brothers, Adelson, etc.  These people get high-ranking pols to sit down with them for contributions of a few million each cycle. In the last cycle we've seen several be given high-profile positions (DeVos, McMahan)  But true Russian oligarchs are in a completely higher league of mingling business with politics.

...Bloomberg, Steyer, Soros....


(let's not pretend it's a right-wing phenomenon, no?)
Of course - never meant to imply that spending money for influence was exclusive to one party (guilty of picking only the most recent examples), but it's gross hyperbole to equate the level of political influence these people have with the Russian oligarchs.
There's simply no contest.

Today of course it is, but the difference is a matter of degrees. Russia has reached the point where true political opposition is nearly impossible in the near term. The wealthy elite, business men and politicians have all merged into a single explicit entity in Russia. They generally aren't out terrorizing the populace and in many ways Russia is still a nice place to live, but the government still has full control over the media, politics and big business all under the same umbrella maintaining political power through imprisonment and killing of major opposition.

The US of course has business and political corruption. But our laws and conventions prevent us still from going anywhere near as far as Russia. Media and politicians can generally oppose each other in public without fear of death or imprisonment. We have reasonably healthy independent media and judiciary. Big money still has competing interests that align under two major competing parties.

In general in all major western countries it is very easy to distinguish systemic corruption in Russia from the pockets of corruption every country has in their system and we all rest along a spectrum.

My primary issue with Trump is that his public disdain for all opposition to his office is running a 24/7 campaign to discredit all entities not on the same page. And he has convinced a non-trivial portion of the population that it is okay and that he is a victim. That is doing an unknown amount of real long term damage to our system and pushing us along the spectrum away from a healthy system and towards a more authoritarian disposition where we are being told to believe a president over and independent and free press. Their is a vast difference between a healthy defense of your policy that opposes the popular press narrative and attempting fully discredit the only organizations able to analyze and criticize political action.

Our other branches of government are mostly holding strong, but they are unfortunately allowing this to continue for partisan gain. To spread the blame beyond Trump, there has been a long campaign in this country to discredit media sources on partisan grounds and this is the most recent culmination of that growing sentiment that some major news groups just can't be trusted.

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Re: United States of Russia?
« Reply #549 on: June 13, 2017, 07:37:52 AM »
Word on the street is Trump might be firing Mueller as well. Did anyone watch clips of Trump's cabinet meeting? It reminded me of how lil Kim conducts meetings in North Korea. "Say something nice about me or I'll kill your family."