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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

WHAT A DAY! (Update. And it's a really WOW update.)

The big update: I've written a lot today. As in: A lot. I had no intention of writing more. And then...and then....

Phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald J. Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, according to four current and former American officials.

American law enforcement and intelligence agencies intercepted the communications around the same time they were discovering evidence that Russia was trying to disrupt the presidential election by hacking into the Democratic National Committee, three of the officials said.
The aides in question: Paul Manafort, Carter Page and Roger fucking Stone. The very three names predicted two or three posts down. (Note: I did not do the predicting. I merely hoped.)
All of the men have strongly denied that they had any improper contacts with Russian officials.
If you can't believe the King of the Dirty Tricksters, who can you believe? I hope that the FBI grilled Stone closely. And I hope that if he lied to the feebees in any way, however slight, he'll receive the same treatment meted out to Martha Stewart.

Remember: Just hours ago, Sean Spicer (or, as some call him, Melissa) was claiming that nobody from Team Trump had any contact with Russia before the election.

Here's a reaction from John Aravosis:
We are seriously at the point of wondering whether our president has committed treason. Whether he is a knowing agent of a foreign power, and for all intents and purposes a foreign “enemy” of the United States. There is no other way to frame this.

Hillary Clinton would have been facing impeachment charges at this point.

I just don’t even know what to say, this is so bad.
You want to do something about all of this? CLICK THIS LINK NOW.

Time to kick ass, my friends, because the Republicans still think that Trump is going to be useful to their crusade to screw over the American people.
"I just don't think it's useful to be doing investigation after investigation, particularly of your own party. We'll never even get started with doing the things we need to do, like repealing Obamacare, if we're spending our whole time having Republicans investigate Republicans. I think it makes no sense," Paul said.
That's Rand Paul, just in case you were confused. Actually, Paul is the one acting confused: He seems to think that the GOP will be allowed to focus on policy issues.

No, Mr. Paul. Not while we have a marmalade madman selling out the nation to a foreign power. Give up on Donnie, give us a President Pence, and you'll be amazed at how much easier your project will become.  

And now we return to the post as originally conceived...

This is my third post on the Flynn affair, which may go down as the most extraordinary spy scandal since Dreyfuss. I had not planned to write any more today, but this line of unreasoning deserves a response. The headline sums up the whole argument: "America's spies anonymously took down Michael Flynn. That is deeply worrying."

No. Nuh-uh.

Everyone knows that I'm (usually) a privacy advocate and a critic of many covert operations. But those concerns don't apply in this case.

Look at it this way: My late father worked on the space program back in the 1960s. Career-wise, he pretty much was Howard Wollowitz from Big Bang Theory, although temperamentally he was somewhere between Leonard and Sheldon. Obviously, my father had a security clearance. The FBI investigated him quite thoroughly; they also questioned him about co-workers who needed clearances. And properly so.

You know damned well that if my Dad had contacted the Russian ambassador in DC, the FBI would have found out. They probably would have acquired a transcript of the entire conversation. And properly so.

Now let us suppose, hypothetically, that my Dad did not just design equipment used by NASA. Let us posit that he had also worked on a 1964 political campaign (for any candidate) -- and at the same time was in contact with the Soviet ambassador, or, hell, any other Russian. The matter almost certainly would have spilled over into the newspapers. And properly so.

(Of course, we are speaking hypothetically; my father never would have talked to anyone from the USSR without permission. He was a patriot and proud to work on projects Gemini and Apollo. He never got involved with politics, although he was a great admirer of JFK.)

General Michael Flynn was the head of the Defense Intelligence Agency and a key adviser to Donald Trump. Can you honestly argue that the FBI was not justified in learning what Flynn had to say to the Russian ambassador? Can you honestly argue that the public had no right to learn that Flynn had -- at the very least -- rendered himself susceptible to blackmail?

Funny you should mention that... Trump's current troubles have given rise to some pretty good jokes. Here's my favorite:

What does Mike Pence say to his wife when he comes home each night? "Not yet, hon."

From Christo Grozev:
"Kim Jong Un's Brother murdered with poisoned needles" << sorry, Kim, good try but you can't compete with US politics at this point.
So. Are you people tired of winning yet?

Dan Rather has turned into someone I actually like:
We are still less than a month into the Trump Presidency, and many are asking that question made famous by Tennessee Senator Howard Baker those many years ago: “What did the President know, and when did he know it?” New reporting suggests that Mr. Trump knew for weeks. We can all remember the General Michael Flynn’s speech from the Republican National Convention – “Lock her up!” in regards to Hillary Clinton. If Hillary Clinton had done one tenth of what Mr. Flynn had done, she likely would be in jail. And it isn’t just Mr. Flynn, how far does this go?

The White House has no credibility on this issue. Their spigot of lies – can’t we finally all agree to call them lies – long ago lost them any semblance of credibility. I would also extend that to the Republican Congress, who has excused away the Trump Administration’s assertions for far too long.

We need an independent investigation. Damn the lies, full throttle forward on the truth. If a scriptwriter had approached Hollywood with what we are witnessing, he or she would probably have been told it was way too far-fetched for even a summer blockbuster. But this is not fiction. It is real and it is serious. Deadly serious. We deserve answers and those who are complicit in this scandal need to feel the full force of justice.
Michael Moore has also turned into someone I like:
Let's be VERY clear: Flynn DID NOT make that Russian call on his own. He was INSTRUCTED to do so.He was TOLD to reassure them. Arrest Trump.
Precisely. That's the reason why this story won't go away: Nobody in his right mind believes that Flynn made that call all on his lonesome.

Some wild-n-wooly theorizin' is going on out there. My readers have sent in a couple of intriguing links.

1. A Putin link to Weinergate? This one's wild, but there are a few points of overlap between this theory and some of my own much-despised speculations.
It was the Comey letter that handed the election to Trump. Even if corrupt elements in the FBI Field Office in New York, penetrated by Russia, forced Comey’s hand – even if Russian hacker Nikulin did plant emails on Anthony Weiner’s computer – there had to be a “separate criminal case” in the first place for the NYPD and FBI to go looking, right?

But what if there wasn’t?

What if Vladimir Putin directed the entire attack – not via a “15 year old girl” from Gaston, North Carolina, but by a hardened group of adult hackers from that state who had penetrated the emails of Director Brennan of the CIA, and doxed and attacked hundreds of FBI and law enforcement personnel?

And what if, after making Carter Page’s recruiter Jeff Sessions Attorney General, Donald Trump repeated the trick by making the ‘prosecutor’ of those Carolina hackers Acting AG – then changing the order of succession at Justice to cement him as number two?
I looked into the underaged sexting allegation only briefly, but as I recall, there is some question as to whether the girl even exists. Some of you may recall "Betty and Veronica," the allegedly underaged girls who played a role in the first round of the Weinergate scandal. They turned out to be non-existent.

(You need not remind me that "sexting" the underaged is always wrong, even when the underaged personage is a fiction.)

2. Who the hell is Dimitri Rybolovlev? A reader alerted me to a whole new line of research that has somehow escaped my attention so far.
Contacts between Trump campaign staff and Russians of influence? Start by exploring research showing Dimitri Rybolovlev's plane (registration M-KATE) at same airport tarmacs at the same time as the DJT campaign plane in Las Vegas and then on November 3 at Charlotte NC. Not a lot of oligarch action in Charlotte NC often. Oh, and one other time - this past weekend M-KATE was at Miami while DJT was at Mar - A Lago. Rybo was the guy who paid 95 million AFTER the real estate crash for DJT's 45 mil Palm Beach house. It really smells of courier/bag man action

Then you have to move onto Wilber Ross, Russians and banking in Cyprus. Another topic.
Turns out that this is a genuine thing. Some links:
Why did the mainstream media not report this? He met with a Russian oligarch 5 days before the election. Why? The media went crazy over Bill Clinton & Lynch... but a Russian oligarch parks his plane next to Trump's in a small airport on the day Trump is scheduled to be there, and not a sound?

Need I also add, that this man, Dmitry Rybolovlev, has immense political power in Russia because of his wealth?

Need I also add that in 2008, he bought a mansion from Trump, which Trump made $60mill in profit off of? (Bought in 2004, $40mill, Sold for $100 mill). Was this all a way of laundering money? It wouldn't be the first time a foreign businessman does that in the West - the chinese do it all the time! If it was Clinton, we would have questions being asked.
and next week's will be ?
There is a revote petition that has made it to the Supreme Court.

I was wondering when people were going to remember Manafort. I wish someone would start asking about that plane...thanks for all this work!
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