Lion of the Blogosphere

Friday thoughts

with 40 comments

James Comey seems to me like a passive-aggressive snake in the grass.

There’s nothing at all to the witch hunt, just a few people Trump hired who made money in ways that appear unseemly to outsiders, but for political insiders it’s business as usual, and if you sifted through Hillary Clinton’s staff with the same fine-tooth comb, you’d find the same types on her team.

Nevertheless, runaway special prosecutors have been known to dig up all sorts of unrelated dirt.

Trump’s trip to Saudi Arabia presents good possibilities for positive press. No doubt it causes cognitive dissonance for Democrats that the Arab countries like Saudi Arabia are very happy that Trump is President, because they hated Obama. They don’t care about Trump’s “Muslim ban,” because they don’t let Jews and Christians immigrate to their countries, why do they care if the United States does the same to their people, as long as they can all get along diplomatically? The Middle East simply does not understand the do-gooder liberal ethic at all. They think they’re a bunch of chumps. They love to take advantage of those chumps, but they have no respect for them.

Earlier this week, the MSM was abuzz with Trump allegedly giving away too much Israeli intel to the Russians. You can’t form any opinion about that because people who hate Trump keep leaking stuff with the intent to harm him, so you can’t trust the veracity of any of that info. Unless the Israelis publicly complain about it, it’s not the business of liberal Democrats to scream for impeachment when no one knows what actually happened. I am sure that Obama shared intel with other countries when he felt like it, but no one ever cared about what Obama did because he won a Nobel Peace Prize.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

May 19, 2017 at 7:43 am

Posted in Politics

40 Responses

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  1. Trump’s branding of Comey as a “showboat” is another masterstroke – what Scott Adams calls a “linguistic killshot.” For one thing, it’s a funny word. Distinctive. Sticks out in the mind. For another, it’s true. Comey loves the cameras and the press probably despite himself. And finally – this is the crucial thing – when he inevitably gives his public testimony to loudly discredit Trump? Well he’s just a showboat preening for the cameras again. That’s Comey.

    Two in the Bush

    May 19, 2017 at 7:52 am

  2. Israel will never publicly complain. Even if it was a leak of valuable intelligence, it’s even more valuable to quietly get some sort of concession as compensation. But there’s also this:

    IHTG

    May 19, 2017 at 7:58 am

    • Cernovich is saying that there was info in the Bezos Blog story that compromised sources but that it didn’t come from Trump. Such details were not discussed in the meeting with the Russians because Trump didn’t have those details himself. The President isn’t given such details in intel briefings unless he specifically asks for them. So, according to Cernovich, there was a damaging leak and the Administration has been on lockdown trying to find the leaker who did compromise sources for the purposes of harming Trump with the Bezos Blog story.

      Andrew E.

      May 19, 2017 at 9:00 am

    • Israel will never publicly complain.

      Even the WP story doesn’t say Trump’s comments gave information about intelligence sources methods directly to the Russians.

      It only said that Trump mentioned the name of a city and a military operation in Syria and from this “it might be inferred” by the city name and operation what the source & method of intelligence gathering was.

      I don’t know if only mentioning a city and a mission would be enough to reveal anything secret – I know we have conducted military operations around Raqaa from publicly available news stories but just knowing the engagement and city it was fought in doesn’t give me insight into what intelligence the US military is using to plan operations.

      The Undiscovered Jew

      May 19, 2017 at 7:33 pm

  3. “James Comey seems to me like a passive-aggressive snake in the grass.”

    Some one with more subtlety would have just persuaded Comey to resign. That would have avoided this whole problem but Trump is so impatient he couldnt wait the extra week or two.

    The only hope for his Presidency would seem to be a sympathetic illness or a martyr’s death so he can be beatified like JFK.

    Lion o' the Turambar

    May 19, 2017 at 8:56 am

    • Romney subtly worked his way into the loser’s circle, thrice, including his failed attempt to sabotage Trump.

      Andrew E.

      May 19, 2017 at 10:36 am

    • Comey is the guy who literally ran to a hospital to tug at woozy John Ashcroft’s ear when he thought some other administration officials were trying to leapfrog his authority. Like hell he’d ever resign.

      Richard

      May 19, 2017 at 10:39 am

    • No, the intention was to humiliate Comey as a show for the other aristocrats to get in line.

      The French phrase for this escapes me at the moment.

      Paul Ryan's Sickly Old Lapdog

      May 19, 2017 at 11:26 am

      • ” The French phrase for this escapes me at the moment.”

        Encourager les autres.

        Robert

        May 19, 2017 at 4:16 pm

    • “The only hope for his Presidency would seem to be a sympathetic illness or a martyr’s death so he can be beatified like JFK.”

      Rolls eyes.

      Well, if he died it would hardly be depicted as a “martyr’s death.” Hell, if Trump were killed the streets would be full of SJWs wildly celebrating. You think the nation would be shocked, like with JFK? Hardly. The media would gloat. Colbert’s audience would howl with delight.

      Anyway, Trump is doing well enough for a one man show confronting the entire political and media apparatus. The “impeach Trump!” mania will burn itself out because it is a fire with zero fuel. He hasn’t done anything even remotely illegal.

      peterike

      May 19, 2017 at 12:12 pm

      • “The “impeach Trump!” mania will burn itself out because it is a fire with zero fuel. He hasn’t done anything even remotely illegal.”

        That may have seemed plausible 3 months ago, but at this point it’s clear that we’re not even close to peak hate for Trump. The fuel is never ending.

        Mike Street Station

        May 20, 2017 at 8:36 am

    • ” Hell, if Trump were killed the streets would be full of SJWs wildly celebrating. You think the nation would be shocked, like with JFK?”

      I do. The media has has walked way out on to the end of the limb here with their ridiculous coverage standards. The only thing that has prevented their bias from blowing up in their face is Trump constant swirl of drama and risible statements.

      Right now all the Trump-hatered is consequence free and the only way the liberal media can monitize their audience’s dislike of the election outcome. If there actually were a tragedy as a result of all the media’s goading the majority of the county would repudiate what has been going on.

      Lion o' the Turambar

      May 19, 2017 at 3:29 pm

      • You don’t know your own country, I’m afraid.

        IHTG

        May 19, 2017 at 4:28 pm

      • The following people (not a complete list) have no discernible ethics or morals:
        Jeff Bezos;
        A. Sulzberger Jr.;
        Carlos Slim;
        George Soros.

        The first three have enormous influence over the machinery of respectability (which is 100% what these fights are over) and the last one finances the dramatic content (Fergeson) the others use to transmit their respectable/non-respectable verdicts to the masses and their fellow culture elites.

        Two of these people are not only scumbags but non-natives or foreign. We have to limit media ownership by non-natives. Also, unified ownership of media by consumer product sellers allows excessive vertical integration and break-ups need to be required.

        Curle

        May 20, 2017 at 2:48 pm

  4. I realize that the father of our country doesn’t matter as much as Scott Adams, but I think that old George’s words about virtue might be relevant here.

    http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/washing.asp

    Virtue, as Gertrude Himmelfarb defined it, being the classical idea of “the will and capacity to put the public interest over the private.”

    Donald Trump has never pub the public interest over the private. He may survive a term because the Dems themselves are so horrible and unpopular, but I can’t believe that he cares about anything other than his own grandiose ego.

    gothamette

    May 19, 2017 at 10:11 am

    • Trump’s ego is no more grandiose than Obama, Hillary, Ryan, McCain, FDR or Bernie.

      Curle

      May 20, 2017 at 2:34 pm

  5. “No doubt it causes cognitive dissonance for Democrats that the Arab countries like Saudi Arabia are very happy that Trump is President, because they hated Obama.”

    I heard a talk from a Saudi prince that they’re “happily surprised” with Trump’s foreign policy. They love his anti-Iranian stances, thought his bombing of Assad last month was fair and proportional (though I’m sure they’re hungry for more), and they like how Trump is a strongman with a gauche sense of taste.

    I agree with your take that Russian ties with the Trump campaign didn’t extend much beyond having paid Manafort and Mike Flynn in the past. So what? Trump has fired them both.

    Netanyahu is much happier with Trump than he was with Obama. Like the Saudis, Netanyahu likes Trump’s anti-Iranian posturing, his bombing of Assad, and his brash, no-nonsense way of talking and doing business. Netanyahu might not be thrilled with the Russians getting the gist of Israeli intel, but I doubt it’s anything he can’t resolve in a meeting with Trump.

    In two or three years, as the Trump-Russia hoopla finally starts to die down, it will be our prerogative to tell leftists they have no right to complain about McCarthy and no right to deny their movements were polluted by USSR influence. They’re employing all the same tactics of “xenophobia” and “witch hunting,” but against the Russian Federation, which is not half the adversary the USSR was.

    And above all else, nothing Trump has done with Russia has been 1/1000th as treasonous as what Obama did in giving the Iranians $400 million in ransom payments.

    Sid

    May 19, 2017 at 11:18 am

  6. Obama won a Nobel Peace Prize BECAUSE no one cared what he did. It was enough that he was Obama and not Bush. You got the causation backward.

    Wency

    May 19, 2017 at 11:52 am

  7. Let’s see if we can distill this into something pithier:

    If President Trump feels the Russians might be a useful ally against Muslim terrorists, then he’s entitled to share any intelligence on the subject with them, even if they hold all the wrong opinions on cocksucking or gender bending.

    Marty

    May 19, 2017 at 12:44 pm

  8. Vox Day pretty much hits Comey’s personality perfectly: Comey is a gamma, acting like he is really the Secret King.

    map

    May 19, 2017 at 1:32 pm

  9. Here are a few items I think might be of interest.

    Harvard Study Reveals Huge Extent of Anti-Trump Media Bias
    https://heatst.com/culture-wars/harvard-study-reveals-huge-extent-of-anti-trump-media-bias/

    Buchanan’s political analysis.
    http://dailycaller.com/2017/05/17/pat-buchanan-it-isnt-watergate-yet-but-how-long-can-we-sustain-this/

    Dershowitz explaining why the appointment of a special counsel was bs.

    destructure

    May 19, 2017 at 2:23 pm

    • Here’s another interesting item about leaks from Trump’s own administration. The author is a cuck but raises valid points. Apparently, some of the leaks are from loyal, pro-trump advisers. Trump is so temperamental that he refuses to hear bad news or take advice. So they have no choice but to leak it to a reporter to make him listen and take action. If true (and I suspect it is) then this is a problem with Trump and not his staff.

      http://theresurgent.com/i-know-one-of-the-sources/

      destructure

      May 19, 2017 at 5:45 pm

  10. “James Comey seems to me like a passive-aggressive snake in the grass.”

    James Comey believes strongly in that the Justice Department and FBI should enforce the law independent of political control from the White House. This is an American norm and is one of the major things that differentiates the US democracy from the corrupt democracy found in some 3rd world countries. This independence is almost entirely a norm and is not written into the constitution or the law. The ten year term for the FBI director was an attempt by Congress to give the FBI director more independence from political pressure, but Congress still allowed the president to fire the FBI director.

    Richard Nixon could have simply ordered the FBI and Justice department to end the Watergate investigation, and fired anyone who refused. Even Richard Nixon knew he could not do that. Nixon tried to convince the CIA to tell the FBI that Watergate was a CIA matter and to back off. (The burglars who were arrested in the Watergate were anti-Castro Cubans who had worked for the CIA in the past.). I believe the CIA refused.

    Trump has no government experience and simply does not understand the norms that underlie the US government. At the most basic level democracy is simply authoritarian rule by the majority. The constitution attempted to limit that through the bill of rights guaranteeing minorities certain rights. There are also norms and traditions that are not written into law but are none the less taken very seriously by most people in government.

    As acting Attorney General, while John Ashcroft was in the hospital, Comey decided that one of the post 9/11 surveillance programs was not legal and should not be re-authorized. The White House tried to get Ashcroft to overrule Comey from his hospital bed. Comey was tipped off about this and went to Ashcroft’s hospital room with FBI director Robert Mueller. Comey and Mueller convinced Ashcroft to support the decision. George Bush could have fired Ashcroft, Comey and Mueller, but the White House backed down. The program was revised to meet Justice Department concerns before it was re-authorized.

    If Trump knew any of this history, he would have known better than to ask Comey to end the Flynn investigation.

    mikeca

    May 19, 2017 at 3:01 pm

    • Unitary executive. It’s completely legal for the President to tell the FBI Director to shut down an investigation. Not that that’s what actually happened.

      Andrew E.

      May 19, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    • The constitution attempted to limit that through the bill of rights guaranteeing minorities certain rights.

      The bill of rights doesn’t mention minorities. It protects certain individual liberties through prohibitions on federal government power. Liberties that leftists such as yourself violate every time you get a chance.

      If Trump knew any of this history, he would have known better than to ask Comey to end the Flynn investigation.

      Trump never asked Comey to end the Flynn investigation. Comey testified before congress that he’d never been asked to end an investigation. In fact, the alleged leaked memo doesn’t say Trump asked him to end the investigation. That was an invention of the media.

      destructure

      May 19, 2017 at 4:44 pm

    • mikeca,

      Baloney.

      Obama and Loretta Lynch did not want to pursue an FBI investigation against Hillary Clinton…and, lo and behold, Comey dismisses any notion of arrest for obvious charges (charges that would get you and me arrested) against Clinton. Moreover, he decided to go beyond his role as FBI Director and to act as judge and jury…explaining that Clinton did not “intend” to violate national security with her email server, therefore, without intent, there would be no basis on which to indict her.

      Never mind that “intent” is not a feature of national security laws…they are statutory. There is a guy sitting in prison right now for snapping six pictures of the interior of a nuclear submarine. I doubt he “intended” to sell those to the Russians.

      Never mind that it is not the role of the FBI director to usurp the role of the Attorney General and unilaterally decide what is or is not indictable.

      This is all completely and transparently documented, as is Loretta Lynch’s meeting with Bill Clinton on an airplane suspiciously close to when all of this is going on.

      Where is this Comey belief that the FBI should operate outside of the political control of the White House? Or, does he think it is not really political control when he happens to agree with the agenda of the White House’s previous occupant? Is that the kind of view you want an FBI director to have?

      Look at it this way: what if Donald Trump was running an email server in a closet routing top secret State Department correspondence? Would there be any doubt that Trump would be rotting in jail for Treason?

      Yet, you want us to believe that Comey is some kind of avatar for holding up law enforcement tradition.

      map

      May 19, 2017 at 4:52 pm

      • “Look at it this way: what if Donald Trump was running an email server in a closet routing top secret State Department correspondence? Would there be any doubt that Trump would be rotting in jail for Treason?”

        If Hillary Clinton had done something like that, she would have been prosecuted for it. She was not prosecuted because she clearly had done nothing like that. Hillary Clinton set up a private email server for her NOT SECRET/NOT CLASSIFIED email. After the fact, the CIA and FBI looked at all the emails and decided that a few of them should have been classified. Almost all of those emails were emails sent to Hillary Clinton. In some cases Clinton replied to or forward emails that contained information the CIA/FBI decided after the fact should have been classified to other State Department employees that were authorized to receive classified information.

        If I send you an email containing information that the CIA considers classified, who should be prosecuted? Should you be prosecuted for receiving classified information in an unsecured account? Or should I be prosecuted for sending unclassified information to an unsecured email account?

        It was always clear the Hillary Clinton had done nothing wrong. Republicans went around saying Clinton was going to be indited any time now, even though they all knew that was highly unlikely. It was a political strategy and it worked because low information voters believed them.

        mikeca

        May 19, 2017 at 10:08 pm

      • “Or should I be prosecuted for sending unclassified information to an unsecured email account?”

        People in govt would assume that the SECRETARY OF STATE is someone you can send classified emails to. So it’s her fault, not the sender.

      • “People in govt would assume that the SECRETARY OF STATE is someone you can send classified emails to.”

        The State Department has a classified and an unclassified email system. Hillary only hosted her unclassified email account on her own server. Everyone in government with access to classified information knows how to send email to her classified email account.

        The State Departments classified email system can only be accessed in the State Department offices and US Embassies.using special terminals. Hillary Clinton had her aids print out her classified emails on paper for her to read. If someone sent a classified email to Hillary it might be several days before she got a chance to read it. On the other hand Hillary read her unclassified email on her Blackberry and would get it almost immediately anywhere in the world.

        State Department employees sometimes send information that they knew was technically classified to her unclassified email account because they thought it was urgent she see the information quickly. In most cases the State Department employees thought it was stupid over classification by the CIA and they felt there was no risk in putting the information in an unclassified email.

        Much of the “classified information” in these emails is believed to be about US drone attacks. The CIA considers any information about drone attacks to be classified, even if you are just quoting what it says in the local newspaper. Reportedly one document that was classified is a transcript that is available on the internet of a public speech given by Tony Blair.

        The heart of this issue is a disagreement between the State Department and the CIA over what information should be classified. The State Department believes that information that is available on the internet or in local newspapers should not be classified. The CIA disagrees.

        mikeca

        May 20, 2017 at 1:24 pm

      • mikeca,

        “If I send you an email containing information that the CIA considers classified, who should be prosecuted? Should you be prosecuted for receiving classified information in an unsecured account? Or should I be prosecuted for sending unclassified information to an unsecured email account?”

        ” In most cases the State Department employees thought it was stupid over classification by the CIA and they felt there was no risk in putting the information in an unclassified email.”

        ____________________________________________________

        Classification systems operate in the following way: for any given security clearance, I will be unable to read anything at a security clearance above mine, and, more importantly, I will be unable to write to any security clearance below mine.

        The second is very important: it pertains to not declassifying the information that is is for-your-eyes only to security clearances below you. For a computer system, writing to a lower classification system, like sending classified information to an unclassified email server, is an extreme violation of the law, similar to dropping material on a USB stick and walking out the door.

        If someone sent Hillary classified information, then that person should be promptly arrested and then determined if there are other conspirators involved. The circumstances of why such material was sent to Hillary’s email needs to be discovered. With if Hillary ordered her staffers to send such material to her email server? What if she was forwarding such email from a State Department email system to her email system? These are gross violations of the law that have landed similar violators in prison.

        It’s not up to State Department employees to decide at their discretion what is or is not over-classified.

        “The State Department has a classified and an unclassified email system. Hillary only hosted her unclassified email account on her own server.”

        That’s ridiculous. Think about what you wrote. You’re telling me the State Department would not be able to set up Hillary with an unclassified, State Department-provided Blackberry that would guarantee routing of all unclassified State Department emails to said device so that Hillary could get urgent information quickly anywhere in the world? Any corporation can do this with their executives but State Department IT can’t or won’t? The State Department does not have its own VPN?

        Yeah…go to your company and ask them to route their email traffic outside of their network directly into your home-based, private email server…see what they say.

        Do you not understand how completely suspicious it is that Hillary is not only mishandling classified material but, for some reason, feels compelled to run State Department business outside of a State Department network?

        “The heart of this issue is a disagreement between the State Department and the CIA over what information should be classified.”

        No, that is not the issue, because you would never be able to make that case. Hillary makes that case because she is privileged before the law, given all kinds of do-overs and benefits-of-the-doubt, and allowed to skate on matters that get ordinary people in trouble. That is the problem. It is the very heart and nature of Democrat corruption where they seed their people, like Comey, everywhere and then said seedlings provide cover to protect the big boys, like allowing her IT people and her lawyers to comb through evidence because anything is turned in to the FBI.

        It’s disgusting.

        Exactly what is Hillary’s contribution to the world that such enormous privilege is allowed or even justified? She’s not curing cancer or inventing zero-point energy. The world became a much worse place under her watch. Why shouldn’t she be rotting in jail if some ordinary schmuck gets that same treatment?

        map

        May 21, 2017 at 3:03 am

    • You’re being really naive. It’s important that the president not shut down investigations into his own administration but the idea that the FBI has operated completely independent of presidential control or that it even could is silly.

      Magnavox

      May 19, 2017 at 6:17 pm

  11. If the Saudis like you that is a bad thing, unless you support the spread of wahabi fundamentalism. Trump getting cozy with the Saudis and Erdogan demonstrates he is certainly not a Christian nationalist.

    Peter Akuleyev

    May 19, 2017 at 5:59 pm

    • That would be misunderstanding the Saudi role as diplomats.

    • …demonstrates he is certainly not a Christian nationalist

      Yeah, and?

      Who came up with that label for Donald Trump of all people.

      Rifleman

      May 19, 2017 at 11:36 pm

    • It is currently not in our interest to see Saudi Arabia destroyed. It would hurt our business.

      Paul Ryan's Sickly Old Lapdog

      May 20, 2017 at 8:32 am

      • Supposedly another $100 BILLION arms sale to them!

        How could the US economy compensate for the loss of that kind of deal?

        What are we going to sell and to who?

        Rifleman

        May 20, 2017 at 9:24 am


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