Lion of the Blogosphere

Trump call with Rodrigo Duterte

This is pretty interesting, and I think better of Trump after reading it.

Notice how Trump makes Duterte feel important by asking for his opinion on how to deal with China and North Korea, and then he coaxes him into lobbying China to do more about North Korea.

* * *

Who leaked this? Because it makes Duterte look good, and probably everyone else in the Philippines is too afraid of Duterte to cross him, my guess is that Duterte himself leaked it.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

May 23, 2017 at EST pm

Posted in International, Politics

42 Responses

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  1. The more important thing here is another leak, assuming this isn’t deliberate. If I were POTUS I would personally employ a small squad of blood-oath couriers to personally deliver paper letters to recipients and hand over special one time use crytpographically secure telephones. Apparently the entire federal bureaucracy in DC hands classified material to the press constantly. How can foreign policy be conducted in such an environment? Secrecy is necessary.

    bobbybobbob

    May 23, 2017 at EST pm

    • Supposedly this was leaked from a Philippines source.

      Richard

      May 23, 2017 at EST pm

      • It still makes Trump look bad. What kind of similar leaks have there been before this? It reminds me of I read an article talking about how crazy Dan Rather was, and the author ended the article by talking about the “what’s the frequency, kenneth” and how even that proves that Rather is nuts.

        You can hardly blame Rather for that one, but Boyer notes that such things rarely seem to happen to Tom Brokaw and Peter Jennings. It’s as if Rather attracts half the madness in the universe, and the other half comes out of his mouth.

        Similarly even if the leaks came from Trump is still somehow reinforces how leak prone the Trump administration is.

        http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/assessment/2004/09/dan_rather.html

        Magnavox

        May 24, 2017 at EST pm

      • I’m troubled by your lack of self-reflection. If people like Trump and Rather “attract half the madness in the universe,” what does that say about you, for whom hating Trump seems to have become your hobbyhorse? You are so one-note that Trump gets blamed for something done by a Philippine functionary.

        The US leaks are coming from people hostile to Trump, who are so deeply in the wrong that they have to commit crimes to do so. That reflects on the corrupt bureaucracy rather than Trump himself. Trump needs to appoint a new FBI director who will genuinely work at identifying and prosecuting the leakers — the Manchester crime photos ought to be the last straw — which I am not convinced Comey was making a good faith effort at doing.

        Richard

        May 25, 2017 at EST am

  2. This drives MSNBC crazy. They honestly can’t understand Trump being gracious to what they consider bad people. Trump’s refusal to criticize Putin could only mean one thing: Trump is a Russian Stooge! But then he did the same thing to Kim Jong-un. And now Duterte.

    It’s clear that Trump knows how to negotiate with these type of people; a bit of flattery and publicly giving them the benefit of the doubt to their motives. Why is our news media too dumb to see this?

    Mike Street Station

    May 23, 2017 at EST pm

    • The Left is pathologically incapable of understanding other people because it is the ideology of arrested development. Imagine a child incapable of understanding the motives of other people. It’s the same reason that even a Social Democrat (like Trump) is called Hitler / Racist / Fascist / etc — Complete shutdown in the face of motivations & actions that aren’t derived from their selves.

      Panther of the Blogocube

      May 24, 2017 at EST pm

      • If it weren’t for conservatives constantly flipping out at liberals for being too understanding of criminals, terrorists, the poor, the disabled, blacks, gays, etc. etc. you would maybe have a point. The reality is that everyone picks and chooses who they sympathize with in order to bolster their preexisting political convictions.

        And so far Trump is a down the line establishment republican except being slightly more anti immigration and being more explicit and extreme in his use of social issues to blind people to their own economic self interests. He ain’t a social democrat.

        Magnavox

        May 24, 2017 at EST pm

      • That’s the thing. Liberals don’t understand the “criminals, terrorists, the poor…” The Liberal mindset projects itself onto these groups with only the most superficial view psychological motivations that people in the real world have. Great for increasing the sanctimoniousness of Liberals, terrible at actually addressing real world problems.

        Panther of the Blogocube

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

    • Putin, Duterte and Kim Jong-Un are all bad people. Putin and Kim in particular are cynical mean-spirited losers who put the financial interests of their family and clan ahead of the nations they claim to be leading. No wonder Trump gets them.

      Peter Akuleyev

      May 25, 2017 at EST am

    • This morning I was listening to the local talk show (it’s a couple of cucks who talks sports and politics on a truly moronic level) and they were puzzling over the latest leak bombshell: that of the US intel leaking stuff about the Manchester bomber. Supposedly the Brits are angry about these leaks. Laurel and Hardy couldn’t understand why anyone in US intel would leak sensitive info.

      It’s plain as day to me: the intel community wants to damage Trump any which way it can. This humiliates Trump and makes him look totally incompetent.

      I’ve changed my mind about the impeachment. The Dems don’t want to impeach Trump. They want to make him their pinata.

      gothamette

      May 25, 2017 at EST pm

  3. Trump gets along great with foreign leaders from Saudi Arabia to the Philippines. It’s the Eurocrats and establishment in America who have it in for him.Speaking of which, whoever keeps leaking transcripts of calls to other leaders belongs in prison.

    destructure

    May 23, 2017 at EST pm

  4. Oh noes! He said we haz subz under waterz!!! I mean, he narrowed that down to hundreds of square miles of ocean! To find a MOVING OBJECT.

    MY GOD! This must mean the Russians will now take out our subs!!! Oh wait… Trump is a Russian stooge… but… but… the Norks!!

    Ummmm….

    It really has gotten to be a sour joke how they will go after anything Trump does.

    So has Trump tweeted “told ya so” about Manchester yet? I hope he has.

    peterike

    May 24, 2017 at EST pm

  5. Most Filipinos aren’t afraid of Duterte. In fact, they seem rather blase about all the extrajudicial killings. Non-western societies generally don’t care if shit happens to a small minority. They don’t think “we’re gonna be next!” like westerners do. And they’re usually right.

    Jason Liu

    May 24, 2017 at EST pm

    • They’re a pretty mellow people, at least the ones I have met.

      Vincent

      May 25, 2017 at EST am

    • Yeah, which reminds me that in he ’80s, line used to always make fun of conservatives for fretting about the “slippery slope.” Now, for lefties it’s all slippery slope all the time.

      Marty

      May 25, 2017 at EST am

  6. Does Lion agree with me that Comey was trying to provoke Trump into making actions that could be construed as obstruction of justice, possibly so Comey could run for President?

    https://pragmaticallydistributed.wordpress.com/2017/05/23/comey/

    There are many variables to choose from in this drama. The Democrats, NeverTrump deadenders, Hillary, the current administration, the former administration.

    Out of all of them, the James Comey variable is the most informative variable because he was the only player whose actions throughout were always informed by full knowledge of whatever evidence was or was not found in the investigation.

    We will put forward a theory, show that our theory best fits his actions, and then relate what it means for the Progressive movement generally. The lesson – non-intuitively as so often happens with good statistical methodology – is that the Progressive movement should be more worried about being removed from power than Trump should.

    Theory: Comey was trying to setup a case for obstruction of justice against Trump by gradually provoking him into making hostile comments in privately to Comey that, when added together, could eventually amount to a case for obstruction of justice.

    We also speculate – though with less certainty than our main theory which holds he was building an obstruction case – that Comey’s actions may have had in mind that if his obstruction case created enough of a political scandal that he could leverage the resulting media publicity into a Presidential run in 2020.

    Based on what has been reported about their private conversations, Comey appeared very coy responding to Trump’s questions about what state the investigation was in, who was under investigation, whether the intelligence probe was being converted to a criminal case, or whether Trump himself was being criminally investigated.

    Meanwhile, Comey quietly encouraged the media to speculate about the direction of the investigation (such as the urine soaked “dossier”) based on leaks strategically fed to them even though Comey himself had known for months there was no underlying crime.

    In public testimony to the Congress, Comey was careful to give as little information as possible.

    By keeping the true state of the investigation a very tightly held secret and letting it unnecessarily drag on despite most Congressmen and Senators admitting in public they had seen no evidence of a crime, he hoped to let Trump’s imagination and frustration grow wild in meetings Comey meticulously kept notes about.

    Eventually, he planned, Trump would make enough small to medium size (or one obviously over the line) statements that bordered on obstruction for Comey to later argue collectively made for a true case of obstruction.

    Regardless whether he saw himself as a future President, Comey’s actions are remarkable for the tremendous contempt they showed for the political process and the establishment.

    But why shouldn’t he be contemptuous? Look at who the other anti-Trump actors are in this saga.

    The Undiscovered Jew

    May 24, 2017 at EST pm

    • Comey got his start in the big leagues negotiating Marc Rich’s pardon, a pardon that produced real windfalls for the Clinton’s over the years in the form of campaign contributions, Clinton Foundation contributions and other assorted kickbacks no doubt. Maybe Comey has his own offshore anonymous account gratis the Rich’s. Who knows?

      Curle

      May 24, 2017 at EST pm

    • The speculation that Comey wants to run for president is out of left field and I think detracts from your overall read on events, which is otherwise credible. I think it’s telling that Comey is bosom buddies with Benjamin Wittes,a professional think tanker who now runs the blog Lawfare, which is very popular with Beltway liberals and media figures. Wittes has been going around claiming to speak for Comey’s private views, and I guess he’s not lying because Comey hasn’t called him out for it.

      Wittes co-wrote an article two months ago called “The Revolt of the Judges,” an analysis of the rulings over Trump’s travel ban that liberals went goo-gah over because it provides a legal rationale for overruling everything Trump does, no matter what the standing legal principles are. Here’s the key passage:

      “But also there is a third possibility, and we should be candid about it: Perhaps everything Blackman and Margulies and Bybee are saying is right as a matter of law in the regular order, but there’s an unexpressed legal principle functionally at work here: That President Trump is a crazy person whose oath of office large numbers of judges simply don’t trust and to whom, therefore, a whole lot of normal rules of judicial conduct do not apply.

      “In this scenario, the underlying law is not actually moving much, or moving or at all, but the normal rules of deference and presumption of regularity in presidential conduct—the rules that underlie norms like not looking behind a facially valid purpose for a visa issuance decision—simply don’t apply to Trump. As we’ve argued, these norms are a function of the president’s oath of office and the working assumption that the President is bound by the Take Care Clause. If the judiciary doesn’t trust the sincerity of the president’s oath and doesn’t have any presumption that the president will take care that the laws are faithfully executed, why on earth would it assume that a facially valid purpose of the executive is its actual purpose?

      “In this scenario, there are really two presidencies for purposes of judicial review: One is the presidency when judges believe the president’s oath—that is, a presidency in which all sorts of norms of deference apply—and the other is a presidency in which judges don’t believe the oath. What we may be watching here is the development of a new body of law for this second type of presidency.”

      https://www.lawfareblog.com/revolt-judges-what-happens-when-judiciary-doesnt-trust-presidents-oath

      As nuts as this is —- a review panel created ex nihilo to decide which presidents get to be real presidents —- Comey must not see it that way if he’s good friends with Wittes and sneakily using him as his spokesman to create some noise. If Comey was intimate with Wittes’ ideas he may have been trying to build a case that Trump could not be trusted to “faithfully execute the laws.” The goal here would not be impeachment, per se (which might not be politically achievable) but just to provide enough ammo for liberal judges to use in nullifying Trump’s actions on the grounds that he can’t be granted normal presumptions because of his behavior.

      Richard

      May 24, 2017 at EST pm

      • Outstanding post, Richard. Add to this conversation yesterday’s wapo story about the “fake” “Russian” “intel” document detailing an email exchange between Debbie Wasserman Schulz and some Open Society Foundation people (lol) explaining that Loretta Lynch wouldn’t allow Hillary to be charged, which apparently led Comey to make the public statements regarding Emailgate, and you have an incredibly bizarre situation regarding Comey and his motivations for everything he’s done this past year or two.

        Two in the Bush

        May 25, 2017 at EST am

      • The president has the authority to ban visas or immigration from certain countries when he determines that they threaten nation security. Trump’s problem is that he has not been able to explain his ban in terms of a threat to national security that makes an sense.

        The reason for the temporary travel ban was suppose to be so homeland security could draw up new guidelines for admitting people from those countries. Homeland security however has done nothing about any new guidelines. The government lawyers told the judge that they thought the judges order forbids homeland security from working on new guidelines too, which is a ridiculous position. The judges order might restrict homeland security from implementing the new rules, but it could never stop them from proposing new rules that improve security.

        Trump’s own statements and his administrations behavior make obvious that the whole premise that there is a grave threat to national security that justifies the extraordinary action of the travel ban is false. When a president cannot be trusted to speak truthfully, judges can decide whether to believe his statements to the court or not. Trump’s problem is that he is a bull shitter and his statements are frequently not factually accurate. Courts are not required to take at face value statements from people who lack credibility.

        mikeca

        May 25, 2017 at EST am

      • Even Wittes acknowledges that the judiciary’s treatment of Trump is unprecedented, despite *every* president being a hardcore bullshitter. This passage Wittes quotes from another Lawfare analyst named Blackman gets to what the rulings are really about:

        Judge Brinkema has applied a “forever taint” not to the executive order, but to Donald Trump himself. For example, the government defended the selection of the seven nations in the initial executive order because President Obama approved a law that singled out the same seven nations for “special scrutiny” under the visa waiver program. Judge Brinkema rejected this reasoning: “Absent the direct evidence of animus presented by the Commonwealth, singling out these countries for additional scrutiny might not raise Establishment Clause concerns; however, with that direct evidence, a different picture emerges.” That is, if Barack Obama selected these seven countries for extreme vetting, it would be lawful, because he lacks the animus. But because Donald Trump had that animus, it would be unlawful. No matter that Trump excluded forty-three other Muslim-majority nations that account for 90 percent of the global Muslim population. Even though three of the included nations are state-sponsors of terrorism! It will always a “Muslim ban” because of comments he made on the O’Reilly Factor in 2011, a policy he adopted in 2015, and abandoned after his lawyers told him it was illegal. She admits as much. “A person,” she writes, “is not made brand new simply by taking the oath of office.” Not the policy. The person. Trump.

        Richard

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

      • No matter that Trump excluded forty-three other Muslim-majority nations that account for 90 percent of the global Muslim population.

        And if Romney were President and he signed an identical travel ban that judge would create some other flimsy excuse.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

    • Comey got his start in the big leagues negotiating Marc Rich’s pardon, a pardon that produced real windfalls for the Clinton’s over the years in the form of campaign contributions, Clinton Foundation contributions and other assorted kickbacks no doubt. Maybe Comey has his own offshore anonymous account gratis the Rich’s. Who knows?

      Possible, but I lean against it. Comey seems like someone more motivated by fame and climbing up the FBI power chain than money.

      You would be surprised how often ideologues in DC will support establishment corruption without taking bribes.

      The Undiscovered Jew

      May 24, 2017 at EST pm

    • The speculation that Comey wants to run for president is out of left field and I think detracts from your overall read on events, which is otherwise credible.

      I admitted in my entry that this kind of motive might be a stretch.

      But do you agree a Presidential run would have become a possibility if he (A) built up more incidents between him and Trump to build an obstruction charge on, and (B) If the scandal had been big enough to either seriously hobble the White House or lead to impeachment?

      If his plan had generated enough of a publicity windfall I have a hard time believing he wouldn’t at least have been tempted to enter.

      As nuts as this is —- a review panel created ex nihilo to decide which presidents get to be real presidents —- Comey must not see it that way if he’s good friends with Wittes and sneakily using him as his spokesman to create some noise.

      Comey’s Twitter account was exposed. There were not many tweets on it but one of them liked an article discussing how the travel bans were unconstitutional.

      Imagining Trump as a constitutional threat fits his expressions of great personal distaste for Trump like Comey’s hiding behind the White House curtains to avoid Trump.

      Exaggerating the threat Trump posed to law and order might have been a way for him to build up his own ego as Trump’s main nemesis as well as a mechanism to suppress his own guilt for letting the Clinton’s slide in so many investigations.

      The goal here would not be impeachment, per se (which might not be politically achievable) but just to provide enough ammo for liberal judges to use in nullifying Trump’s actions on the grounds that he can’t be granted normal presumptions because of his behavior.

      There’s no guarantee what the political consequences would have been if Comey had enough time to spin together an obstruction of justice charge against Trump.

      But impeachment wouldn’t be a longshot either.

      The Undiscovered Jew

      May 24, 2017 at EST pm

      • Since it’s speculation, I just don’t see why Comey would see it as a viable path to the presidency. No FBI director has ever run for president. I don’t recall any of the federal investigators of Nixon, Clinton or Andrew Johnson using it as a platform for a presidential run. Set aside the presidency; has Comey ever talked about getting into elective politics? He would be 60 in 2020 and that’s pretty old to jump into a new shark tank. Donald Trump was older, but he’d been talking publicly about running for president since the 1980s.

        Richard

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

      • Since it’s speculation, I just don’t see why Comey would see it as a viable path to the presidency. No FBI director has ever run for president.

        No?

        What would Comey’s media coverage be like if the obstruction of justice case he was building led to impeachment?

        No FBI director has ever run for president. I don’t recall any of the federal investigators of Nixon, Clinton or Andrew Johnson using it as a platform for a presidential run.

        Were any Presidents real estate developers?

        Set aside the presidency; has Comey ever talked about getting into elective politics?

        Not to my knowledge.

        But Trump proved a political outsider could defeat the entire establishment.

        If Trump could do it, and if Comey had taken down Trump, why wouldn’t he at least consider it?

        He would be 60 in 2020 and that’s pretty old to jump into a new shark tank.

        With modern medicine, 60 is young.

        Donald Trump was older, but he’d been talking publicly about running for president since the 1980s.

        He toyed with it, but didn’t seem eager to.

        It was only obvious levels of political decay that prompted Trump to try to take over politics, partly out of duty, but also because the current establishment was on the way out.

        Why wouldn’t Comey also test if he could bend the establishment to his will if Trump’s victory showed how frail and weak the higher ups have become?

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

  7. OT- since this thread is stalling, a suggestion. How about reporting on life back in cubicle world after an extended absence? That, or review some more 80s movies or albums.

    Curle

    May 24, 2017 at EST pm

    • If you don’t have Appetite for Destruction, get it. And you want a great 80 flick? Try Red Dawn.

      El Hombre

      May 25, 2017 at EST am

      • For me, the best all around 80s movie is Cocktail. Really captures the aesthetics and general attitude of the era to perfection.

        Two in the Bush

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

      • Defiance (starring Jan Michael-Vincent) and Road House (Patrick Swayze) are two thoroughly entertaining 1980s movies.

        Lewis Medlock

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

    • No. He still owes us the promised review of Brotherhood and his fans also want reviews of Lost Highway and Mulholland Drive.

      Otis the Sweaty

      May 25, 2017 at EST am

  8. With the Seth Rich thing, there are 2 separate issues:

    1. Was Rich the source of the DNC hacks?

    2. Was the DNC/Hillary campaign/Deep State involved in Rich’s murder?

    It is fine to dismiss 2 as a conspiracy theory, but 1 is an absolutely legitimate question. Yes, the IC says that they are “reasonably certain” that Russia was behind the DNC hack, but they are also proven to be liars as well as being incompetent. We can’t just take their word for it. The initial Fox report that started this whole thing off was based on a source in the FBI, not Wheeler, who told Fox that Rich was the source.

    Neither Assange or Kim Dotcom are reliable. They have multiple reasons to lie and try cause trouble for Hillary, the Dems and the Deep State. But they can’t just be outright dismissed either.

    The only way that I will accept this matter as settled is if the IC releases the information that has led them to conclude it was Russia behind the hacks. Failing that, I will continue to regard this matter as unresolved.

    Otis the Sweaty

    May 25, 2017 at EST am

    • People in Russia hacking a server doesn’t preclude a disgruntled insider independently stealing files and distributing them to the press. People in Russia hack a lot of servers, and high profile people and organizations are prime targets. Note also that I say people in Russia and not the Russian Government. The Russian speaking world has a massive population and they are adept hackers. Russian students just won IBM’s International Collegiate Programming Contest for the 7th straight year. Just because a hack originated in Russia doesn’t mean the government was involved. Hillary was despised not just by Putin, but by 90% of the Russian population as well. And the politics of hackers are no less patriotic than the average man. Almost all private hackers, criminals, and cyber thugs in Russia were virulently anti-Hillary.

      PerezHBD

      May 25, 2017 at EST pm

    • Assange’s word is far, FAR more trustworthy than the Deep State’s word. This is obvious.

      Andrew E.

      May 25, 2017 at EST pm

  9. OT – since you’re the experts:

    How does the wall look like now?

    bombexpert

    May 25, 2017 at EST am

    • The Wall is about trolling smug white liberals, not border security. Trump has not abandoned The Wall and whether or not it gets built is of little consequence as long as we all keep talking about building it.

      NPR headline from earlier today: “A Proposed New Tax, Mainly On Latinos, To Pay For Trump’s Border Wall.” Can you feel the triggering?

      Whenever I encounter an SJW who gloats about the current lack of Wall funding, I tell them that this has simply angered President Trump and now when The Wall does get built “We Can’t Restore Our Civilization With Somebody Else’s Babies” will be etched into every single brick.

      Horace Pinker

      May 25, 2017 at EST pm

      • Nice!

        Curle

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

    • The wall is going to happen. Not worried even a little.

      Andrew E.

      May 25, 2017 at EST pm

    • Never happening. The dead-on-arrival Trump budget funds only 60 miles (i.e. nothing) of wall. Seems the GOP plans to use it as a base-turnout strategy in the next few elections (oh man, we really want to build the wall, but we need to elect more Republicans so we can!).

      What Trump should do is pull out of NAFTA until Mexico (or Congress) agrees to pay for it, which is probably his natural instinct, but he’s unfortunately surrounded by cucks and leftists.

      snorlax

      May 25, 2017 at EST pm

      • Ryan, Lindsey, McCain. Which is worst? Also, can someone explain why South Carolinians vote for an obvious puffter like Graham?

        Curle

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

      • The really smart thing would be to go nuts fining people for hiring illegal immigrants. There’s still a significant portion of Democrats that want to stick it to corporations and the rich and aren’t nearly as interested in wiping out traditional white America. That’d be much smarter politics and do way more to reduce illegal immigration than a wall would.

        Magnavox

        May 25, 2017 at EST pm

  10. OT–the British security services have said they will not share information concerning the Manchester bombings with their American counterparts after stories ended up being leaked to the American press.

    This seems to me like it should be a gift to Trump because he can tie it in with the leaks that he has suffered, and the newspaper that published the name of the attacker (NYT I think) has been a strong critic of Trump. It was a pretty shitty thing for a newspaper to do, when such a move could obviously potentially ruin the attempt to catch any accomplices or other would-be bombers.

    prolier than thou

    May 25, 2017 at EST pm


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