Tuesday, May 29, 2018

A Ragout of Russiagate

In the wake of the Memorial day weekend, not too much and kind of a meaty stew of subsubjects.

From Kerry Picket at Da Caller: FBI Agents Afraid To Testify, Say Congress Likely Won’t Protect Them. The omerta is strong in the "Deep State" and Congresses record is not that good. George Neumayr at the Spectator has a special report on The Three Stooges of Spygate: Brennan, Comey, and Clapper have been caught in a big fat wringer.
The three stooges have yet to utter the name of Stefan Halper, the spy at the center of the Obama administration’s farcical plot. Rubbing his bald pate as usual, Clapper claimed total ignorance of Halper. He apparently was at the children’s table at Brennan’s interagency gatherings. “I didn’t know about this informant,” Clapper said.

Of course, his I-know-nothing routine didn’t stop him from serving as an authority on the knowledge levels of others: “No one in the White House knew. Certainly the president didn’t know.” But amidst all this defensiveness, Clapper worked up a sweat defending the spying as a “good thing,” which raises the obvious question: If it was all so normal and praiseworthy, why not tell Obama?

Just as Clapper’s denial of FISA warrants on the Trump campaign disintegrated, so too will that one. Sooner or later it will come out that Obama knew damn well that the Trump campaign was under surveillance and signed off on it. How could he not have? After all, we’ve been told repeatedly that spying on the Trump campaign was a national security matter of unspeakable gravity. How could such a matter be withheld from the person most responsible for national security?

So what did Obama know and when did he know it? Brennan could give the precise date; he was personally briefing Obama on “Russian interference,” Brennan’s euphemism for his paranoid hunch that Putin’s agents had recruited Trump campaign officials. All the hush-hush dynamics around Brennan’s “taskforce” make no sense if he and White House officials were just sitting around discussing Facebook ads. No, what made it an “exceptionally, exceptionally sensitive issue,” in Brennan’s words, was that they were spying on an opposing party’s presidential campaign.
Michael Barone at the New York Post:  Obama’s spying scandal is starting to look a lot like Watergate.
Until 2016, just about everyone agreed that it was a bad thing for government intelligence or law enforcement agencies to spy — er, use informants — on a political campaign, especially one of the opposition party. Liberals were especially suspicious of the FBI and the CIA. Nowadays they say that anyone questioning their good faith is unpatriotic.

The crime at the root of Watergate was an attempt at surveillance of the DNC after George McGovern seemed about to win the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination, just as the government misconduct in Russiagate was an attempt at surveillance of the Republican Party’s national campaign after Trump clinched its nomination.

In both cases, the incumbent administration regarded the opposition’s unorthodox nominee as undermining the nation’s long-standing foreign policy and therefore dangerous to the country. McGovern renounced the Democrats’ traditional Cold War policy. Trump expressed skepticism about George W. Bush and Obama administration policies on NATO, Mexico, Iran and (forgetting Barack Obama’s ridicule of Mitt Romney on the subject) Russia.
Wrong. Nixon wasn't told about the spying until well after it occurred; Obama was in the loop from the beginning. Hence Susan Rice's note to file.

Edward Snowden Skeptical of Russia Collusion: Trump Can’t Even Finish a Sentence. Come home and he'll help you start one. But you'll have to finish it alone.

Byron York continues on his "bank shot" theme of the Mueller investigation:

James Poulos at the Week lists those who benefit from a Trump take down: If Trump goes down, everyone wins

Mandy Mayfield at the Examiner reports how a  fight broke out when a Fox News contributor claimed Hillary Clinton 'gave' Russians money during 2016 campaign
Fox News contributor Katie Pavlich claimed Monday that Hillary Clinton "gave" money to Russians during the 2016 presidential election. “We have seen the result of all of this boomerang on the other side, on the Clinton campaign, which was more directly connected to the Russians than we’ve seen any evidence of with the Trump campaign," Pavlich said Monday.

The Fox contributor and longtime Trump defender was commenting on the dossier compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele, who she says worked with the Russians to compile the documents filled "with salacious information about President Trump.”

The remarks caused former Clinton communications director Adrienne Elrod, who was also a guest during the segment, to burst out laughing.

“They gave them money,” Pavlich exclaimed.

“I don’t even know where to start here,” Elrod said. “The Clinton campaign did not have any collusion with Russia, let’s just put that forward.”

“They paid someone working with Russians money for opposition research on Donald Trump,” Pavlich cut in.

"It was a dossier, it was opposition research, it was a very standard part of the campaign," Elrod responded.
So when the Trump campaign buys some oppo research from some shady Russians through a couple layers of law firms and retired foreign spies, you're not going to call it collusion, right? It's funny how every crime with the Clintons comes down to a matter of language. Speaking of Clinton crimes, Charles Ortel at PoliZette asks Is Today the Clintons’ Last Pre-Indictment Memorial Day? - 
Latest treasure trove of 'pay-to-play' Hillary State Department emails is full of bad memories for America's best-known crime family
Bad as these latest developments are, however, they pale in comparison to looming negative consequences now that the State Department has begun dribbling out more than 30,000 missing Clinton emails, together with supporting attachments.

These long-awaited and, until now, hidden documents are all but certain to make an ironclad case that the Bill, Hillary & Clinton Foundation went into high gear as a “pay-for-play corruption” and personal enrichment scheme through its various “initiatives” — while Hillary served as secretary of state and, later, as she sought the U.S. presidency for the second time.

Why the new batch of missing State Department emails matters. Bernie Sanders may not have cared about “those damn emails,” but Jay Sekulow, chief counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), does care.

After years of dogged pursuit, Sekulow has finally forced the State Department to disclose initial portions of a “treasure trove” of long-suppressed documents. If the initial 339 pages are any clue, the complete batch of 30,000 emails should ultimately convince even the most ardent Clinton supporters that the Clinton Foundation, the Clinton Global Initiative, and other Clinton-controlled entities were actually influence-peddling vehicles — and certainly not charities.
Read the whole dirty thing. It's been obvious to intelligent observers for a long time that the Clinton "charities" are mostly covers for personal benefit for the Clinton family, while maintaining the Clinton government in exile, all funded by influence peddling. If I were a prosecutor assigned this case, I would take a page out of Mueller's methods with General Flynn, and a go after Chelsea Clinton first, as a way of squeezing Hillary's nuts.

Michael Avenatti, Stormy Daniels, and their gay publicist
Bummer Dude. Stormy Daniels' lawyer Michael Avenatti complicates Cohen probe
In public, Michael Avenatti, Clifford’s current attorney, has been among the most vocal critics of Michael Cohen, the lawyer who paid her $130,000 in October 2016 to sign a nondisclosure agreement about an alleged 2006 sexual encounter with Trump.

But behind the scenes, Avenatti has slowed prosecutors’ efforts to discuss the nondisclosure agreement with Ms. Clifford’s former lawyer, these people say. Avenatti also demanded to review documents investigators subpoenaed from Clifford’s former manager, they said.
I'm sure he bills by the hour. Hopefully he's reducing George Soros or Tom Steyer's fortunes significantly.

Avenatti hasn’t yet acted on multiple requests from federal prosecutors in Manhattan for Clifford to waive the attorney-client privilege that prevents her former lawyer from discussing their communications about the nondisclosure deal, the people familiar with the matter said. In April, Avenatti, acting in his capacity as Clifford’s current lawyer, sent a cease-and-desist letter to her former lawyer, Keith Davidson, ordering him not to disclose any communications related to her, one of those people said.

Avenatti made similar demands of Clifford’s former manager, Gina Rodriguez, who helped engineer the hush-money deal. Avenatti tried to block Rodriguez from providing her communications with Clifford to federal prosecutors until he had reviewed them, other people familiar with the matter said.

Avenatti has told federal prosecutors he is trying to get Clifford to agree to waive her attorney-client privilege, but prosecutors have come to believe he is stringing them along, the people familiar with the matter said. The delays in responding to their requests to waive privilege aren’t seen as highly damaging to the probe but have frustrated investigators, they said.
Possibly a plan to keep the issue alive into the 2020 election cycle? Dude, nobody cares.

Kindly linked at Wombat-socho's "Rule 5 Sunday: Overall Beauty".

No comments:

Post a Comment