Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Russiagate Ramping Up

After the Christmas slowdown things are heating up a bit again. Ace: Wheels Within Wheels and Sources Who Have Sources: Glenn Simpson's Fusion InfoOp Continues Vomiting Up Lies, and McClatchy Newspapers Keeps Licking It All Up
Stories are now being attributed to sources who themselves have sources.

That is, they are dispensing with the notion that a source is someone with first-hand information about the claims being made. Now they're printing hearsay from a source (Glenn Simpson and co.) who claim they in turn have sources who told them about the information.

Ashe Schow begins the story by revisting McClatchy's last FusionGPS #FakeNews report, that Cleta Mitchell, a current lawyer for the NRA, became aware that the NRA was taking #MoneyFromRussians for Trump.

McClatchy was unbothered that this "report" (from Fusion) contained two claims, one which could be fact-checked and one that couldn't be, and the claim that could be fact-checked, that she was the current lawyer for the NRA, was flat-out wrong -- she stopped working for the NRA ten years ago.

But I guess that gave them even more confidence in the other claim, that Russians were funneling money to Trump through the NRA. I guess based on the idea that if they got one thing wrong, heck, Fusion must be right about the other thing!
But don't you dare call it "fake news." Jed Babbin at Da  Spectator: The Most Successful Coverup
Since Watergate, the Washington wisdom has always held that it’s not the crime, it’s the coverup that sinks a politician. But that’s only the case when the coverup fails.

But what if the coverup succeeds?

It’s horribly simple. The crimes are never uncovered and the perpetrators are never brought to justice no matter how serious their crimes may be. That is precisely what has happened because of the FBI and Justice Department’s coverup of their abuses of power and illegal actions during the 2016 election.

In this case, the FBI and the Justice Department have succeeded in the most significant coverup in American political history. The abuses of power and crimes they have succeeded in covering up are not only against the law: they are crimes against our system of law and government. They were perpetrated by employees of the government, under color of law, with the intention of affecting the outcome of an election. . . .
Tyler Durnden at Zero Hedge:  "The Criminals Who Run The Deep State Will Be Exposed": Kim Dotcom Teases "Next Round Of Leaks"

Big League Politics: How Mueller Has Been Silencing Whistleblowers To Set Up Fake Special Counsels For Years.

More on the Alabama election scandal, from WaPoo: Secret campaign to use Russian-inspired tactics in 2017 Ala. election stirs anxiety for Democrats. Dammit, we got caught! They spent more money on the Alabama Senatorial election than the Russians allegedly spent on the Hillary's loss, and yet they insist it could not have influenced the results. Chris White at Da Caller: NYT Finds More Evidence Of ‘Social Media Trickery’ In Alabama Senate Race 
Progressives created a disinformation campaign exploiting concerns that former senatorial candidate Roy Moore would reimplement prohibition, The New York Times reported Monday. Another spate of reports in December revealed a similar project designed to harm Moore.

Operatives created a “Dry Alabama” Facebook page with a blunt message attached: Alcohol is evil and should be prohibited. The page included images of car wrecks and ruined families, the report notes. Its contents were targeted at business conservatives who are inclined to oppose prohibition.

One person who worked on the project, Matt Osborne, believes that such tactics should be made illegal but is not willing to give them up so long as Republicans are engaging in similar antics. He said Democrats must do whatever is necessary to rebut conservative memes made popular during the 2016 election.
. . .
The cost of the effort, which was funded by liberal billionaire Reid Hoffman, totaled $100,000 — the identical amount Facebook says the Russian Internet Research Agency spent trolling people on social media leading up to the 2016 presidential election. The NYT’s Monday reporting suggests the campaign to convince people that prohibition was on the docket likely cost another $100,000 but was paid through wealth Virginia donors.
 Ace: Democrats Engaged in More False-Flag Election Interference In Jones-Moore Race Than First Reported. "An assault on the very foundations of our democracy."

At American Greatness, Victor Davis Hanson writes of An Epidemic of Erasures, Redactions, Omissions, and Perjuries
Imagine the following: The IRS sends you, John Q. Citizen, a letter alleging you have not complied with U.S. tax law. In the next paragraph, the tax agency then informs you that it needs a series of personal and business documents. Indeed, it will be sending agents out to discuss your dilemma and collect the necessary records.

But when the IRS agents arrive, you explain to them that you cannot find about 50 percent of the documents requested, and have no idea whether they even exist. You sigh that both hard copies of pertinent information have unfortunately disappeared and hard drives were mysteriously lost.

You nonchalantly add that you smashed your phone, tablet, and computer with a hammer. You volunteer that, of those documents you do have, you had to cut out, blacken or render unreadable about 30 percent of the contents. After all, you have judged that the redacted material either pertains to superfluous and personal matters such as weddings and yoga, or is of such a sensitive nature that its release would endanger your company or business or perhaps even the country at large.

You also keep silent that you have a number of pertinent documents locked up in a safe hidden in your attic unknown to the IRS. Let them find it, you muse. And when the agents question your unilateral decisions over hours of interrogatories, you remark to them on 245 occasions that you have no memory of your acts—or you simply do not have an answer for them.

In some instances, you state things that are not true, cannot be true by any stretch of the imagination, and contradict things you have said in the past—and you make it clear that you don’t think much of such inconsistencies. When pressed with contradictory evidence, you nonchalantly reply that you gave the “least untruthful” answer.

What would happen to you, a typical American citizen, should you follow this current Washington model of erasing, redacting, omitting, forgetting, and lying?

Of course, you are a citizen and so must obey the law. Therefore, you might well find yourself either broke, out on bail, in jail, or mired in endless litigation. But since 2016 we have seen how many high government officials involved in any number of such investigations, were not so much citizens as hyper-citizens above the law, who felt they were not subject to audit. And they were largely right in their assumptions.
Jeff Carlson at Epoch Times: String of Indictments by DOJ Point to Multiple Global Operations
Task force at the center, once headed by Bruce Ohr, now directed by Deputy AG Rosenstein. It's amazing that Rosenstein has any time to oversee the Mueller investigation. Oh, that's right, he doesn't do any oversight. At Powerline: Mueller’s cone of silence (3)
Eric Dubelier represents Concord Management and Consulting in the election interference case brought by the Special Counsel against 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities. The case is pending before Trump appointee Judge Dabney Friedrich. I wrote about the motion Dubelier brought protesting Mueller’s designation of 3.2 million documents related to the case as “sensitive” in my earlier posts in this series here (part 1) and here (part 2). In part 2 I observed: “Eric Dubelier is having way too much fun for a lawyer representing a defendant in a criminal case. His courtroom appearances are full of hijinks and good humor.”

Judge Friedrich is not amused. Ordering Dubelier to “knock it off” (more here), Judge Friedrich is putting an end to Dubelier’s good times.
Lawyer for Indicted Russian Firm Levels Bias Charge at Judge
“There appears to be some bias on the part of the court,” Dubelier said after remarking that his clients may want to replace him as counsel since the court finds him so unprofessional.

Raising her voice, the Trump-appointed Friedrich bent in to the microphone to deny Dubelier’s claims of bias. As the court scheduled another hearing for March, however, Dubelier managed to work in another quip.

“Assuming I’m still representing the client that day should be fine,” he said.
. . .
The company has brought multiple challenges to Mueller’s authority and moved most recently to compel discovery on how Mueller obtained confidential information.

As to a protective order that Judge Friedrich granted in June to prevent Concord’s attorneys from sharing case details with third parties, Concord has also sought clarification on what kind of information deemed “sensitive” can be litigated in open court.

Dubelier has claimed that the protective order prevents the defense from adequately planning for trial.

While Friedrich said today that she is “concerned about security breaches,” she compelled the two sides to sit down and communicate more openly about how exactly the protective order should work now that the case has left early stages.
Just what the United States needs, secret trials with secret evidence.  ABC: For Trump adviser Roger Stone, an uncomfortable legal limbo persists
. . . as the calendar turned to a new year, the once-steady stream of Stone's past associates and acquaintances visiting Mueller's D.C. offices has largely dried up. Stone's lawyers said Monday investigators have yet to reach out. He remains in a legal limbo: investigated but not charged.

Asked to comment on the current state of play in the Mueller probe, Stone told ABC News, "No Russian collusion, no WikiLeaks collaboration and no perjury -- no crime."

Nobody outside the special counsel's office could say whether an indictment of the political showman –- who parlayed his early support of a Trump presidential bid into a Netflix documentary -- remains imminent, or whether it's been stalled or derailed.

Legal experts said several recent developments in the Mueller probe suggest he's not off the hook.

"In terms of where and what and when, I think most logical indications are that the government has collected pretty much all the information and evidence they're going to have with respect to making charging decisions about Roger Stone," Kendall Coffey, a former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida now in private practice, told ABC News on Monday.
They're punishing him for being an early supporter of Trump.

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