Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Election Day Russia/Bidengate

So the day is here, at last. We decide for another four years who will attempt to herd all the cats. A doddering old head of a family crime syndicate, likely to be replaced at the first opportunity by the most liberal Democrat in the Senate, or a wealthy and apparently hale but blustery businessman, used to riding herd on multiple business enterprises? 

Predictions? Not from me. Check out Stacy McCain's Election Eve Prediction Time. It looks a lot like 2016, with the Democrat ahead in all the polls, but with the Republican apparently closing on him in the right places, and we know how that went. 

I know enough statistics to be very wary of polling. In theory, it's easy, take a large random sample of voters, ask them, and take the average. The reality is that getting that large random samples without bias is tough at best, and impossible when, 1) people don't answer random phone calls (we don't)  2) people aren't evenly distributed regarding their political persuasions and 3) some people, not without cause, are reluctant to share their political beliefs with anonymous people on the phone.

I've cast my vote, and according to the state of MD it's been counted. And now we wait for the counting to commence in earnest, and all the various challenges. I predict no clear outcome soon, largely due to Pennsylvania, where "mail in" ballots are allowed in up to 9 days after the poll close, and with no postmark required and where voter fraud is a long cherished custom.

Enough! We will see. Edward Luttwak, How Trump Survives a Coup, replying to Michael Anton, "The Coming Coup?"

In contrast to the rigorous impartiality of the government officials of 1969, even amidst the furious national debate on Safeguard, it is now proven fact that several linked individuals within the FBI—up to the Deputy Director Andrew George McCabe—mislead the FISA court to depict Donald Trump as a Russian “asset,” i.e., a Moscow-controlled individual and real-life “Manchurian candidate.”

It is also recorded fact that CIA Director John Brennan, plus his superior, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, publicly suggested that Trump may be a Russian asset operating under Putin’s direction, while simultaneously testifying in closed sessions with Congressional committees that no such evidence existed. Of Richard Helms’ rigorous impartiality there was no trace left, as McCabe, Brennan and Clapper became examples of envenomed partisanship.

As for the wider congressional picture, the scenes of 2019 and 2020 would have been unimaginable in 1969—from Nancy Pelosi contemptuously tearing her copy of the State of the Union speech before the TV cameras, to the habitual description of Trump as “subservient to Putin” by senators and congressmen. They might well believe what they say, but only if they have no understanding whatever of geopolitics—a very complicated thing to be sure, but not for its simplest and only relevant rule: do not quarrel with China and Russia at the same time. (Prime Minister of Japan Abe Shinzo visited Putin several times and invited him for a full-dress visit complete with a home stay at the family house down in Yamaguchi prefecture—not because Abe is pro-Russian or a Russian asset, but because it makes sense for a Japanese prime minister to detach Russia from China.)

Most serious, however, is the ongoing intimidation of the Supreme Court: only three Senators have publicly declared that the newly elected president should appoint more judges to overturn the moderate majority. But of the three (Gillibrand, Harris, and Warren), one is now the Democrats’ vice-presidential candidate.

That is highly relevant because it is the expressed opinion of the leaders of the Democratic establishment—enunciated by former Secretary of State Hilary Clinton—that Biden should not concede victory to Trump under any circumstances, i.e., regardless of the number of votes that he might win. Those are words which would have been simply unimaginable in the past; now they do not even arouse much furor when spoken.

On the Biden crime family,  From Jazz at Hot Air, Hunter Biden: Not Good At The Whole “Password Thing”. I sympathize, but if your going to be carrying around the personal cell numbers of high members of government, along with your porn videos, you need better self control.

But if Joe Biden does manage to win the presidency tomorrow (or whenever the heck we’re finally done counting and wading through legal challenges), that laptop could still have an important role to play. What if the FBI actually does dig up something significantly damaging not just about Hunter Biden, but his father as well? That could provide the excuse that Democrats would need to gently shove Uncle Joe out the door even sooner than he might have gone otherwise, offering the opportunity to install the Historic First Female And Minority President In The History Of Our Nation, Kamala Harris.

Wait… I just got a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. I should probably go lie down for a bit.
Tom Knighton at Bearing Arms asks Did Hunter Biden Break Federal Law Purchasing Firearm? Add it to the list. 
Hunter’s drug issues are extremely well-documented and, based on evidence from the aforementioned laptop, ongoing. As such, he most likely did like (sic, lie?) on his 4473 when he sought to obtain a handgun.

Of course, don’t think for a moment he’ll be prosecuted for that. Unfortunately, we seem to live in a nation where the elites are never prosecuted for their misdeeds, but where you or I will get hammered for every incident.

Oh, law enforcement will argue that they don’t have evidence he was using drugs at the time of purchase or whatever, but even if they did, nothing would happen.

Charles Lipson at RCP,  Biden Family Corruption Does Matter

But their doubts about Biden are rising as they learn more about corruption scandals surrounding Joe’s son Hunter and brother, Jim. The conventional wisdom -- on both right and left, among political strategists in both parties -- is that voters care much more about the economy and COVID-19. That’s correct. They do, and the polls show it. But that doesn’t mean the scandals are irrelevant. They matter politically for several reasons, all of them bad for Joe Biden. They imply the following:
  • Biden is just another grifting politician who got rich in office;
  • Uncle Joe’s persona as average, lower-middle class guy is just a cover story;
  • His self-enrichment makes him the “Washington Swamp” incarnate, no different from all the other politicians turned lobbyists; and
  • The media is so crooked it won’t honestly tell the public about these problems, lest they vote the wrong way.
These issues are not a distraction from Trump’s central campaign themes. They are his campaign themes and have been since he came down that Trump Tower escalator in 2015 to announce his improbable candidacy.
Peter Hasson, Da Caller, ‘Disinformation’ And Other Media Excuses For Downplaying, Dismissing Hunter Biden Revelations. Media has given up all pretense of objectivity. Fair enough, I've given up all pretense in believing them. Via the Wombat's In The Mailbox: 11.02.20 (Election Eve Doomed Beyond All Hope Of Redemption Edition), BattleSwarm: Glenn Greenwald & The Democratic Media Complex,  
“Everyone knows the reality…The reason is that [the media are] all desperate for Trump lose. That’s the reality. They all want Biden to win. And so they don’t want to report any information, and any stories, that might help Biden lose. In part because they want Biden to win, but also because, in their social circles, everyone essentially is anti-Trump and pro-Biden, and they don’t want to spend four years of being accused of having help Trump won [sic], like they were in 2016 when they reported on those emails that were linked by Wikileaks. And it’s just fear. They don’t want to be yelled at. They don’t want to be scorned in their social circles. And so they’re willing to abdicate their journalistic function, which is reporting on one of the most powerful people in the world in Joe Biden. In part because they want to manipulate and tinker with the election using journalism, but in a much bigger part because they’re scared of being yelled at on Twitter. It’s fucking pathetic. It’s going to ruin people’s faith in journalism for a long time, even more so than it already is ruined. For good reason. I now defend people who say ‘Fake news’…It’s just true”

Eric Clary at AmThink, What the missing Tucker docs really tell us. I'm not sure they tell us anything, but it's possible that 1) the FBI, tipped off by the NSA intercepted to documents to collect as evidence. But you think they'd be more careful to get them back undetected, or 2) someone at UPS was tipped off, and intercepted them. But then, why were they found at all, if the effort was to cast doubt on the evidence. It could just be happenstance.

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