This Keeps Getting Uglier

The Hill is not known to be a conservative news outlet, but lately their investigative reporting has certainly not been slanted left.

Yesterday The Hill reported that California lawyer Lisa Bloom, a well-known women’s rights lawyer, was paying women to accuse President Trump of sexual impropriety. First of all, I would like to mention to all the Trump-haters breathlessly awaiting his impeachment or resignation that a President cannot be impeached for things he did before he took office. I would also like to point out that the voters understood that Trump was not a saint. They also understood that the was not part of the corruption of the last administration.

The article reports:

California lawyer Lisa Bloom’s efforts included offering to sell alleged victims’ stories to TV outlets in return for a commission for herself, arranging a donor to pay off one Trump accuser’s mortgage and attempting to secure a six-figure payment for another woman who ultimately declined to come forward after being offered as much as $750,000, the clients told The Hill.

The women’s accounts were chronicled in contemporaneous contractual documents, emails and text messages reviewed by The Hill, including an exchange of texts between one woman and Bloom that suggested political action committees supporting Hillary Clinton were contacted during the effort.

The story concludes:

“If you are interested I would recommend Inside Edition or Dr. Phil as they are much bigger. Dr. Phil is doing a show on Trump accusers next Tuesday in LA and would fly you here and put you up in a nice hotel, and pay for your meals as well, with your daughter if you like,” Bloom’s text added. “Media moves very quickly so you need to decide and then once confirmed, you need to stick to it.”

Representatives of “Inside Edition” and “Dr. Phil” said they did not pay any Trump accusers for appearances last year.

Bloom’s firm sent the woman a “media-related services” contract to represent her for “speaking out against Donald Trump” that laid out business terms for selling a story in the most direct terms.

“You will compensate the Firm thirty-three percent (33%) of the total fee that you collect, whether the media deal or licensing fees is for print, Internet, radio, television, film or any other medium,” Bloom’s proposed contract, dated Oct. 10, 2016, read. The woman said she signed the contract.

When Bloom found out in early November that the woman and the friend had discussions with CBS News about doing an interview on their own, the lawyer texted back: “CBS does not pay for stories.”

A little later Bloom sent another text suggesting the arrangements she was making could be impacted by the unauthorized media contacts. “You and your friends should not be shopping the story it will come back to bite you,” Bloom texted. “And this whole thing we have worked so hard to make happen will go away.”

Yuck. Just yuck.

The Truth Eventually Comes Out

This story is based on articles in Politico, The Conservative Treehouse, and The Washington Examiner. All three articles deal with comments by former interim CIA Director Mike Morell about the politicization of the CIA during the presidential election campaign on 2016 and after President Trump was elected.

Politico quotes Mr. Morell on the friction between the CIA and President Trump when he became the Republican nominee for President:

And then he sees a former acting director and deputy director of CIA criticizing him and endorsing his opponent. And then he gets his first intelligence briefing, after becoming the Republican nominee, and within 24 to 48 hours, there are leaks out of that that are critical of him and his then-national security advisor, Mike Flynn.

And so, this stuff starts to build, right? And he must have said to himself, “What is it with these intelligence guys? Are they political?” The current director at the time, John Brennan, during the campaign occasionally would push back on things that Donald Trump had said.

So, when Trump talked about the Iran nuclear deal being the worst deal in the history of American diplomacy, and he was going to tear it up on the first day—John Brennan came out publicly and said, “That would be an act of folly.” So, he sees current sitting director pushing back on him. Right?

Then he becomes president, and he’s supposed to be getting a daily brief from the moment he becomes the president-elect. Right? And he doesn’t. And within a few days, there’s leaks about how he’s not taking his briefing. So, he must have thought—right?—that, “Who are these guys? Are these guys out to get me? Is this a political organization? Can I think about them as a political organization when I become president?”

So, I think there was a significant downside to those of us who became political in that moment. So, if I could have thought of that, would I have ended up in a different place? I don’t know. But it’s something I didn’t think about.

The Washington Examiner notes:

The answer to that was simple: Yes, they were political. But the astonishing part of the Morell interview is his admission that at the time he did not stop to consider what was happening from Trump’s perspective, even as the leaks continued when Trump took office. “He must have thought, ‘Who are these guys?'” Morell said. “Are these guys out to get me? Is this a political organization?”

The first time Trump met the FBI‘s then-director, James Comey, was when the intelligence chiefs chose Comey to tell Trump, then the president-elect, about a collection of “salacious and unverified” (Comey’s words) allegations about Trump, compiled by operatives working for the Clinton campaign, that has since become known as the Trump dossier. That surely got Trump off to a good start with the FBI’s intelligence-gathering operation. It was also a clever way for the intel chiefs to push the previously-secret dossier into the public conversation, when news leaked that Comey had briefed the president on it.

The Conservative Treehouse reports:

It is important to emphasize here the possibly illegal “unmasking“, and the certainly illegal “leaking“, were all based on intelligence reports generated from raw intelligence, and not the raw intelligence itself.  It was the FBI (Comey) and ODNI (Clapper) generating the intel reports, including the Presidents’ Daily Briefing (PDB).

The CIA provided raw intel, and the NSA generated the raw monitoring intelligence from the characters identified by the CIA and approved by FBI FISA warrant submissions.

It would be EXPLOSIVE if it turned out the October 2016 FISA warrant was gained by deception, misleading/manipulated information, or fraud as a result of the Russian Dossier; and exponentially more explosive if the dossier was -in part- organized by the wife of an investigative member of the DOJ who was applying for the FISA warrant; the same warrant that led to the wiretapping and surveillance of the Trump campaign and General Flynn, and was authorized by FISA Court Judge Contreras – who was, until recently, the judge in Flynn’s case.

The FBI were running the counter-intelligence operation and generating the actual reports that were eventually shared with the White House, Susan Rice and the Dept of Justice.  Those reports, and interpretations of the report content, were eventually leaked to the media.

During the time James Comey’s FBI was generating the intelligence reports, Comey admitted he intentionally never informed congressional oversight: “because of the sensitivity of the matter“.

John Brennan effectively (and intentionally) took himself out of the picture from the perspective of the illegal acts within the entire process.  James Clapper while rubbing his face and scratching his head had taken the same route earlier.

That leaves James Comey.

Stay tuned. This is going to get interesting, even while the press tries to avoid the major question of whether or not the Russian dossier was used as the basis for surveillance of the Trump campaign and transition team.

Too Many Coincidences

Victor Davis Hanson posted an article at National Review today about the Mueller investigation. It’s a rather long and detailed look at the people participating in the investigation. I strongly suggest that you follow the link and read the entire article. The article includes a lot of very insightful observations.

The article states:

The investigation is venturing well beyond the original mandate of rooting out evidence of Russian collusion. Indeed, the word “collusion” is now rarely invoked at all. It has given way to its successor, “obstruction.” The latter likely will soon beget yet another catchphrase to justify the next iteration of the investigations.

There seems far less special investigatory concern with the far more likely Russian collusion in the matters of the origins and dissemination of the Fusion GPS/Steele dossier, and its possible role in the Obama-administration gambit of improper or illegal surveilling, unmasking, and leaking of the names of American citizens.

The article concludes:

Indeed, the only remaining trajectory by which Mueller and his investigators can escape with their reputations intact is to dismiss those staff attorneys who have exhibited clear anti-Trump political sympathies, reboot the investigation, and then focus on what now seems the most likely criminal conduct: Russian and Clinton-campaign collusion in the creation of the anti-Trump Fusion GPS dossier and later possible U.S. government participation in the dissemination of it. If such a fraudulent document was used to gain court approval to surveil Trump associates, and under such cover to unmask and leak names of private U.S. citizens — at first to warp a U.S. election, and then later to thwart the work of an incoming elected administration — then Mueller will be tasked with getting to the bottom of one of the greatest political scandals in recent U.S. history. Indeed, his legacy may not be that he welcomed in known pro-Clinton, anti-Trump attorneys to investigate the Trump 2016 campaign where there was little likelihood of criminality, but that he ignored the most egregious case of government wrongdoing in the last half-century.

I totally agree with his conclusions, but I also believe that the chances of Mueller doing the right thing are about the same as finding a needle in a haystack!

 

The Most Important Question In The Investigation By The Special Prosecutor

The charges against Michael Flynn are based on the difference between how he described a telephone conversation and the written transcripts the FBI had of that conversation. The most important question is, “Why was his name unmasked in the transcript of that conversation?” That question is now being asked by Congress, and the FBI and the DOJ are refusing to answer it. Since Congress is charged with oversight of these government agencies, this is the making of a constitutional crisis.

Yesterday CNS News posted a story which details some of the problems with the ongoing investigation by the Special Prosecutor.

The article reports:

Two simple questions: How did the FBI’s Russia investigation start? And was it started because the Trump “dossier” was presented to somebody at the FBI?

Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) asked FBI director Christopher Wray those questions at a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday, but he got no answers:

This is a portion of the questioning of the Director:

Wray answered, “I’m not aware of who started the investigation within the FBI.”

DeSantis followed up: “Was it started because the dossier was presented to somebody in the FBI?”

“I don’t have the answer to that question,” Wray said.

DeSantis asked Wray if he could get back to the committee with the answer:

“Well, if there’s information that we can provide that — without compromising the ongoing special counsel investigation, I’m happy to see what there is that we can do to be responsive,” Wray said.

Any bets on whether or not that question will ever be answered?

The article continues with questioning by Jim Jordan (R-Ohio):

Jordan questioned why someone like Strzok would be selected for Mueller’s team — and why he’d be kicked off it:

“If you kicked everybody off Mueller’s team who was anti-Trump, I don’t think there’d be anybody left,” Jordan said. “There’s got to be something more here. It can’t just be some text messages that show a pro-Clinton, anti-Trump bias. There’s got to be something more. And I’m trying to figure out what it is,” Jordan said.

“But my hunch is it has something to do with the dossier. Director, did Peter Strzok help produce and present the application to the FISA court to secure a warrant to spy on Americans associated with the Trump campaign?”

Wray refused to discuss anything having to do with the FISA process in an open setting.

“We’re not talking about what happened in the court,” Jordan said. “We’re talking about what the FBI took to the court, the application. Did Peter Strzok — was he involved in taking that to the court?”

Wray again refused to discuss it.

There is a house of cards here. The dossier was a piece of opposition research paid for by the Clinton campaign. It has never been proven true. To use it as an excuse for surveillance and later to drum up support for a special prosecutor is to base an investigation on a fictitious political document and to use government agencies for political purposes. That shouldn’t happen in a representative republic–that is the kind of thing that goes on in a banana republic.

Investigating The Investigators

Get out the popcorn, this is going to get very interesting. Byron York at The Washington Examiner posted an article yesterday about the firing of an FBI investigator.

The article reports:

House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes has issued an angry demand to the FBI and Department of Justice to explain why they kept the committee in the dark over the reason Special Counsel Robert Mueller kicked a key supervising FBI agent off the Trump-Russia investigation.

Stories in both the Washington Post and New York Times on Saturday reported that Peter Strzok, who played a key role in the original FBI investigation into the Trump-Russia matter, and then a key role in Mueller’s investigation, and who earlier had played an equally critical role in the FBI’s Hillary Clinton email investigation, was reassigned out of the Mueller office because of anti-Trump texts he exchanged with a top FBI lawyer, Lisa Page, with whom Strzok was having an extramarital affair. Strzok was transferred to the FBI’s human resources office — an obvious demotion — in July.

Note that this man was also involved in the Hillary Clinton email investigation. Might that explain why no formal charges were brought after an obvious breach of the law occurred?

The FBI and the DOJ have consistently stonewalled Congress when Congress has sought to exercise its role oversight responsibility.

The article concludes:

As a result, Nunes said he has instructed committee staff to draw up a contempt of Congress citation for Rosenstein and for FBI Director Christopher Wray. The chairman promised to take action on the citation before the end of December unless the FBI and DOJ meet all the committee’s outstanding demands.

Obviously Nunes is angry that he did not know about the real reasons for Strzok’s demotion. And he is equally angry with the FBI’s and DOJ’s treatment of the committee. Contempt of Congress is a big move for lawmakers to take, especially against an agency controlled by the same party as leaders of the House. But remember, House Speaker Paul Ryan has already said the FBI and DOJ “stonewalled” the House, and he demanded that it comply immediately. That was five weeks ago. Now, after this latest episode, it seems likely that leaders in Congress are becoming increasingly frustrated with what they see as the FBI and DOJ jerking lawmakers around. At some point, they will act.

It is becoming obvious that the Washington swamp includes many agencies that until recently have avoided politics. There is an awful lot that needs to be cleaned out.

Some Background On The Indictment Of Michael Flynn

Michael Flynn is expected to plead guilty this morning of lying to the FBI. Seems as if a lot of other people have done that in the past with limited consequences, but that was then and this is now.

Fox News is reporting the details this morning.

These are the details of the charges:

  • “On or about Dec 29, 2016, FLYNN did not ask the Government of Russia’s Ambassador to the United States … to refrain from escalating the situation in response to sanctions that the United States had imposed against Russia that same day; and FLYNN did not recall the Russian Ambassador subsequently telling him that Russia had chosen to moderate its response to those sanctions as a result of his request.”
  • “On or about December 22, 2016, FLYNN did not ask the Russian Ambassador to delay the vote on or defeat a pending United Nations Security Council resolution; and  that the Russian Ambassador subsequently never described to FLYNN Russia’s response to his request.”

At this point I am not going to mention that this information was probably obtained through the illegal surveillance by the Obama Administration during and after the election. That alone would result in the case being thrown out in a legal court.

I want to mention a few other things about Michael Flynn. Unfortunately, he is a pawn in a much larger attempt to end the Trump presidency before it can be successful. Since the economic success of the Trump Administration is already becoming obvious to anyone who is paying attention, those who want Trump impeached are starting to get desperate. I would also like to note that the FBI has a past history with Flynn that might influence those doing the investigating.

In September, I posted an article that included the following:

When the FBI launched an investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, one of the bureau’s top former counterterrorism agents believed that FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe would have to recuse himself from the investigation.

Former Supervisory Special Agent Robyn Gritz was one of the bureau’s top intelligence analysts and terrorism experts but resigned from the bureau five years ago after she said she was harassed and her career was blocked by top FBI management. She filed a formal sexual discrimination complaint against the bureau in 2013 and it was Flynn, among many others, who publicly came to her aide.

In her first on-camera interview she described the retaliation from McCabe and others in the bureau as “vicious.”

…She told Circa, current senior level management, including McCabe, created a “cancer like” bureaucracy striking fear into FBI agents and causing others to resign. She eventually resigned herself, but her case is still pending.

Lying to the FBI is not a good idea, but I would like to note that the Clintons have done it consistently over the years with very little consequences. The indictment of Flynn is nothing more than the deep state at work. Those responsible for the illegal surveillance need to be held accountable, and all conflicts of interest in the office of the special prosecutor need to be revealed and dealt with. Unfortunately, Flynn has been caught up as a pawn in a much larger witch hunt. It should also be noted that Flynn was fired after about a month in his job in the Trump administration for lying to Vice-President Pence.

People With An Agenda Who Make Predictions Rarely Get It Right

Yesterday The New York Post posted an article about the impact the election of President Trump has had on the American economy. The article begins by reminding us of the predictions made that if Donald Trump was elected President, he would ruin the American economy. The people making this prediction chose to overlook the fact that President Trump had a reasonable successful record as a businessman.

The article reports:

Foreign tourism to New York City is set to rise 3.6 percent this year — defying yet another of the many doomsday predictions about Donald Trump’s presidency.

Back in February, the city tourism agency said Trump’s “travel ban and related rhetoric” would mean a drop of 300,000 visitors this year. But the NYC & Co. prophecy proved false.

…Of course, other predictions were more dire — particularly those about the stock market.

Finance expert Steve Rattner foresaw “a market crash of historic proportions” under a President Trump. Moody’s warned of a “weaker” economy. Many said 2 percent GDP growth was the best that could be hoped for.

Other doomsayers included Mark Cuban, CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin and firms such as Bridgewater Associates and Macroeconomic Advisers. (A less-dishonorable mention goes to Nobel-winning economist Paul Krugman, who at least walked back his doomsaying about “a global recession, with no end in sight,” soon after election night.)

In fact, the Dow has climbed more than 25 percent since Hillary Clinton conceded. And the first two full quarters of Trump’s term both saw growth of 3 percent or more. Oops.

The article further reminds us that as President, President Trump has followed the Constitution. The article also reminds us that a downturn of the economy is always a possibility, but currently it seems as if President Trump’s business acumen is paying off for the American economy. It would be nice if Congress would clear the way for President Trump’s full economic agenda to go into effect. I have a feeling that all Americans would enjoy the results of that.

A Very Different Perspective On Yesterday’s Indictments

Yesterday Conservative Treehouse posted a very intriguing analysis of the indictment of Paul Manafort. I strongly suggest that you follow the link to read the entire article, but I will try to highlight it here.

The article reports:

As the Special Counsel Robert Mueller indictment documents show with increasing clarity, the entire enterprise surrounding the Washington DC Russian Investigation is not about law, it’s about creating and controlling leverage.

…The 2016 election caused the balance of power to shift favorably toward political forces that are external to the DC machine, ie. President Trump and the deplorables.

The subsequent action by Robert Mueller, Democrats, the Media (writ large), and President Trump is a confrontation over political goals and objectives. The DC machine, the “swamp” per se’, is attempting to frame leverage against actions adverse to their political interest.

…Paul Manafort is being leveraged toward a political objective; his legal jeopardy is negligible. The documents, and the underlying charges, are intended to make life miserable for Mr. Manafort – not to end with some traditionally framed criminal consequence, ie. prison.

Mr. Manafort’s wealth is being held as leverage, compliance, toward his acquiescence within the game; nothing more. He’ll likely end up with some misdemeanor charge, a financial fine good enough for media optics and perhaps -at worst- some probation for not following the FARA rules. That’s it.

Conversely, on the other side of the political continuum, Tony and John Podesta are just now entering the process of being leveraged toward compliance on the Clinton side of the equation. Like Manafort, Tony Podesta most likely will not face legal jeopardy beyond a similar outcome.

In the backdrop to the Clinton dynamic you have Mueller putting the deeper part of the Deep Swamp and remaining black hat intelligence community, on notice to knock-it-off with the selling of U.S. policy toward gaining their own financial indulgences.

The article concludes:

Senator Schumer wants to keep his leverage right where it is currently; and stop ‘his side’ from feeling the effects of Mueller’s omnidirectional legal admonishments. If Mueller indicts Tony Podesta senator Schumer loses political leverage.

Nothing about the current dynamic is factually encompassing President Trump; it is all about optics, narratives and political leverage. However, everything about this dynamic is factually encompassing the existential threat that outsider Trump represents to the established way of life in the DC Swamp.

Toward the end goal of disrupting DC swamp-life, Mueller and Trump appear aligned in common cause. Robert Mueller from the perspective of trying to get the external influence agents to the U.S. stopped; and President Trump from the policy perspective of America-first, which coincidentally is in alignment with Mueller’s patriotic goals to stop influence agents.

That’s the bigger part of the BIG picture. Everything else is smoke and mirrors.

Washington is all about power (and a swamp that does not want to be drained).

It Just Gets Uglier

The Federalist is reporting today that since April President Obama has sent nearly a million dollars of his campaign money to the law group that hired Fusion GPS. This information appears in records filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC).

The article reports:

The Washington Post reported last week that Perkins Coie, an international law firm, was directed by both the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Hillary Clinton’s campaign to retain Fusion GPS in April of 2016 to dig up dirt on then-candidate Donald Trump. Fusion GPS then hired Christopher Steele, a former British spy, to compile a dossier of allegations that Trump and his campaign actively colluded with the Russian government during the 2016 election. Though many of the claims in the dossier have been directly refuted, none of the dossier’s allegations of collusion have been independently verified. Lawyers for Steele admitted in court filings last April that his work was not verified and was never meant to be made public.

OFA, Obama’s official campaign arm in 2016, paid nearly $800,000 to Perkins Coie in 2016 alone, according to FEC records. The first 2016 payments to Perkins Coie, classified only as “Legal Services,” were made April 25-26, 2016, and totaled $98,047. A second batch of payments, also classified as “Legal Services,” were disbursed to the law firm on September 29, 2016, and totaled exactly $700,000. Payments from OFA to Perkins Coie in 2017 totaled $174,725 through August 22, 2017.

The significance of this is simple. The information in the dossier put together by Fusion GPS and Christopher Steele is said to be the basis for the surveillance of the Trump campaign and the Trump transition team. Think about that. Essentially President Obama paid to have a group gather dirt on Donald Trump and then used that dirt (even though it was questionable at best) as the basis for electronic surveillance. That sort of political spying on American citizens is exactly what those in Congress who opposed the Patriot Act were trying to prevent. It seems as if there are a lot of people in Washington who abused their power in recent years and need to be held accountable. The swamp must be drained.

Why The FBI And The Department Of Justice Would Really Rather Not Talk To Congress

Scott Johnson at Power Line posted an article this morning with a possible explanation as to why the FBI and the Department of Justice (DOJ) are withholding information from Congress. Evidently a lot of rather dubious actions that would have been buried had Hillary Clinton been elected President are beginning to come to light.

The explanation comes from a retired FBI agent. He explains:

As a retired FBI Special Agent with over two decades of experience in counterintelligence, I’d like to make a point that Scott and Paul are surely aware of, but which it’s useful to keep at the front of your mind.

Scott regularly refers to the Trump dossier as the “Rosetta Stone” of the “muh Russia” narrative. That’s true, but it’s helpful to go one step further. The real importance of the Trump dossier from a criminal law standpoint lies in the use it was put to for official government purposes. To understand that we need to know whether the dossier was used to justify the initiation of Full Investigations (FIs), according to the relevant AG Guidelines for National Security investigations.

The former agent explains the problem with that:

The full relevance of these considerations can be seen from Scott and Paul’s review of just how threadbare the dossier really was in terms of authentication. If it was used in applications to the FISC with the knowledge that it was “oppo research” and likely not credible, and if that knowledge was withheld from the FISC, I suspect we’re looking at the real possibility of criminal conduct. And bear in mind that such applications (for FISA coverage relating to a candidate for President or a President-elect) would have been approved only at the highest levels before submission to the FISC.

To put two names to that process: James Comey and Loretta Lynch. If they knowingly deceived the FISC–and that depends, as far as we can tell at this point, largely on how they may have used the “dossier”–they’re looking at serious criminal liability.

Here we have an example of the FBI and the DOJ being used for political purposes.

The agent concludes:

Investigations of the magnitude we’re discussing necessarily include a fair number of people and the testimony of those other people would likely shed valuable light on the true nature of the process that was followed, who made the decisions, what was known about the credibility of information that was used to justify official actions, who really believed those justifications, the nature of coordination with other government agencies, etc. This is where the investigative rubber will hit the road.

This sort of political spying is the sort of thing that happens in dictatorships where leaders are grasping to hold on to power. I guess President Obama thought that the election of Hillary Clinton would be his third term as President.

Whatever Happened To Elliot Ness?

In case you are too young to remember, Elliot Ness was:

the man most often recognized for destroying the multimillion-dollar breweries operated by Al Capone. Also responsible, in part, for Capone’s arrest and conviction of tax evasion, Ness was instrumental in ceasing the power Capone had over the city of Chicago.

Ness was also responsible for turning around Cleveland, Ohio, in the mid-1930s, when the city was overcome with crime and corruption. Weeding out 200 crooked police officers and bringing 15 other officials to trial for criminal behavior, Ness set many precedents. One such milestone was Ness’s efforts to correct Cleveland’s traffic problems, establishing a separate court in which all traffic cases were heard.  (quoted from biography.com)

Elliot Ness worked in law enforcement from 1927 to 1944. He was known as an corruptible example of integrity that was totally trustworthy. This was a man who successfully drained his local swamps. We need him now.

Investor’s Business Daily posted an article yesterday listing a few of the Democratic scandals in the Obama Administration that have somehow not had consequences.

Here are a few highlights:

Exonerating Clinton before the facts were in. First was the fact that former FBI director James Comey had, contrary to what he told Congress, drafted what amounted to an acquittal letter for Hillary Clinton months before he’d even interviewed her regarding her unsecured private email server.

Comey interviewed Clinton on July 2, 2016, and three days later announced that he was closing the case because “no reasonable prosecutor” would pursue it.

…Setting up a liberal slush fund. Next, we learned that Justice was using settlement money as a slush fund to support liberal groups, to the explicit exclusion of any non-liberal ones. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte released what he called “smoking gun” emails to that effect.

Under Obama, the Justice department started sending money from legal settlements to third parties not involved directly in the litigation. At the time, there were lots of complaints (including in this space) that the money was being poured into left-wing groups. And Trump ended the practice when he took office.

…Papering over the Uranium One scandal. We’ve also only recently learned, thanks to intrepid reporters at The Hill, that the FBI had a substantial amount of evidence showing that Russian nuclear officials had been involved in a number of illegal schemes designed to expand its nuclear business in the U.S. — which included bribery, extortion and racketeering.

Worse, they had all this before top Obama administration officials — including Hillary Clinton and Attorney General Eric Holder — signed off on a deal that gave Russia effective control of 20% of uranium in the U.S. by approving Russia’s purchase of Uranium One.

…Using Democratic-sponsored Russian dirt on Trump. Now that we know the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee — despite repeated denials — financed the so-called Trump dossier, a bigger question arises.

What did the FBI know and when did they know it?

Despite being labeled as “salacious and unverified” by former FBI director James Comey, it has served as a road map for journalists and federal investigators pushing the Trump-Russia meddling story.

The article concludes:

In the end, the FBI didn’t pay Steele, but as York notes, the question remains: “Did the FBI or other agencies use any information from the dossier as a basis for warrant requests before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court?”

House Republicans announced this week that they’ve started a probe into the FBI’s handling of both the Clinton email case and the Uranium One deal. Now they have a fresh angle on the dossier to pursue.

This is a good start. The Justice Department is supposed to be above politics. Obama tried to turn it into a political tool. The public needs to know how far he got.

Who do you trust to investigate this? Are the Justice Department’s hands clean? Are the FBI’s hands clean? Are the Special Prosecutor’s hands clean? Are Congress’ hands clean?

If you look at the cast of characters involved in or signing off on the Uranium One deal, you will see names you recognize as investigating President Trump for Russian connections. In what universe does that make sense?

The swamp is deep, and at this point we need an Elliot Ness who will go after the guilty parties in a manner showing integrity, impartiality, and honesty. This is not a political matter–this is an exercise that will determine whether or not all of us live under the same laws. If there are two sets of laws–one for the Washington elite (swamp) and one for the little people, our republic will not survive.

 

Some Things Just Don’t Add Up

It is becoming very obvious to even the most casual observer that Washington, D.C. is truly a cesspool. And it seem as if every time someone is about to drain the cesspool, someone else comes along and throws an obstacle in the way. It looks as if that’s where we are with the Uranium One scandal investigation. For almost a year we have had a special prosecutor looking under every rock and pebble to find evidence of collusion between President Trump and any Russians available and finding nothing. Now we have Congress investigating a scandal with actual evidence, and somehow a major witness is being blocked from testifying. It doesn’t make sense.

The American Thinker posted an article today about Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who is blocking testimony in the Uranium One investigation.

The article reports:

Perhaps as startling as the revelation that the FBI was investigating the Hillary Clinton/Russia/Uranium One collusion  and that key figures like Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, Special Counsel Robert Mueller and Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe knew about it and said nothing, is the refusal by Attorney General Jeff Sessions to remove the non-disclosure agreement gag order on the FBI informant who arguably could put Bill and Hillary Clinton and a few others in federal prison.

It was said the Jeff Sessions recused himself from all things Russian because of election campaign conflicts but is it really because he thought it would insulate him from having to divulge what he knew about Uranium One and the people who at the very least knew about the deal, some who approved the deal, including past and present members of the FBI, the DOJ, and Special Counsel Robert Miller’s team? Is Jeff Sessions part of the Uranium One cover-up? If not, then he needs to explain why he is thus far refusing Sen. Chuck Grassley’s request to lift the gag order imposed by the Obama administration as part of the Uranium One cover-up.

The article concludes:

The question is now whether Jeff Sessions wants to help President Trump to drain the swamp be vacating the gag order and letting evidence come forth proving the Clintons orchestrated the greatest criminal conspiracy in U.S. history at the expense of American national security or whether he is just another swamp thing committed to clogging up the drainage pipes. Justice may be blind, but it should never be gagged.

It is getting harder and harder to tell the good guys from the bad guys in Washington. I am hoping that Jeff Sessions is one of the good guys, but I wonder about his decision on this matter.

Transparency is Obviously A Lost Art

Yesterday The Washington Examiner posted an article about the battle between CNN and the government about making public James Comey’s memos about his discussions with President Trump regarding the Russian investigation.

There are a few things that need to be noted here. In June, I posted an article which included the following:

In a statement delivered on the Senate floor, Grassley (Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA)) said that in March, former FBI Director James Comey had told him, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), and the group of Senate and House members known as the “Gang of Eight” that the president was not under investigation.

But Schumer, who is part of the Gang of Eight, continued to tell the media Trump was under investigation, Grassley said.

Okay. So if those Senators knew in March that President Trump was not under investigation, why did Senator Schumer claim he was and why is Robert Mueller continuing to investigate something that was already known?

At any rate, the article at The Washington Examiner reports:

Government lawyers asked a judge Friday to deny CNN’s request to force the FBI to publicly disclose former FBI Director James Comey’s memos documenting his interactions with President Trump about the Russia investigation.

The news network made the case in a lawsuit filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in June that there was high public interest in Comey’s memos and that the notes were not classified, as insisted by Comey himself in testimony. CNN, along with other outlets and watchdog groups, had requested the memos under the Freedom of Information Act.

However, a report from CNN on Saturday explained that parts of Comey’s memos were determined to be classified and the government argued that to make them public would “reveal the scope and focus of the investigation and thereby harm the investigation” and possible prosecutions.

The government is also requesting that an unnamed “FBI employee” make the government’s case in secret.

Was the memo Comey leaked to Columbia University professor Daniel Richman, (who then at the request of Comey revealed the details of the notes to the New York Times to make sure a special prosecutor was appointed) a secret? if so, why hasn’t Comey been held accountable? Who is the government actually working for?

It’s time for the government to start cooperating with the citizens. I realize that might by an alien concept to some government employees, but I am sure they could get used to the idea that they work for the citizens, not the other way around. It truly is time for some transparency in government.

 

The Deep State Lives

I am becoming discouraged about the possibility of anyone cleaning up Washington. We have a new President, but there are so many career establishment people there, cleaning up the city is definitely a slog.

On Sunday The Washington Examiner posted an article that reinforces my concern. Judicial Watch is a watchdog organization that closely watches administrations of both parties and uses Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to hold them accountable.

The article at The Washington Examiner reports:

It has now been more than a month since a House Intelligence Committee subpoena set a September 1 deadline for the FBI and the Justice Department to turn over documents related to the Trump dossier.

Not a single document has been produced. The first deadline was extended once, then again, then again, and is now on some sort of hold. But no documents have been handed over.

…Just as they have been doing with the House intelligence panel, the FBI and Justice Department tried to blow off Grassley, saying any talks with Rybicki and Ghattas might interfere with the investigation of special counsel Robert Mueller. Then, after Grassley threatened to subpoena the two officials, the Justice Department wrote back to Grassley on September 22 to say, “Upon further evaluation, we believe that it is appropriate to make Mr. Ghattas and Mr. Rybicki available to the committee for interviews.”

But Justice still had conditions, particularly where the Mueller investigation was concerned. So in a letter last week, Grassley reminded them that, “contrary to the implication [from the Justice Department], the committee had, in fact notified and consulted with special counsel Mueller’s office for deconfliction purposes about interviewing these two witnesses. Specifically, the committee provided ample opportunity for that office to voice any objection, and accommodated that office’s concern…” In other words, Grassley said, Mueller’s office did not voice any concern about the committee’s request.

Of course, Grassley is so far just threatening a subpoena. The House committee had already issued one. And in both cases, the FBI and Justice Department have not produced either the dossier documents or the two FBI officials (who are thought to know quite a bit about the dossier).

Who is hiding what? Since this dossier was the basis of the wiretapping of people close to Donald Trump when he was running for president, the content and the history of the dossier are important in determining whether or not those wiretaps were illegally done by the Obama Administration.

Was The Obama Administration Using The Government To Spy On Americans?

The Washington Examiner is reporting today that former United Nations Ambassador Susan Powers requested the unmasking of more than 260 Americans‘ identities during the waning days of the Obama Administration. These were conversations captured inadvertently while non-citizens were being wiretapped (theoretically). Susan Powers is scheduled to testify before Congress in October.

The article reports:

House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., submitted a letter in July to Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats that said the committee was aware “that one official, whose position had no apparent intelligence-related function, made hundreds of unmasking requests during the final year of the Obama Administration.”

It is suspected that the official referenced is Power.

Power also was one of three top Obama administration officials named in subpoenas received by several of the nation’s intelligence agencies in May.

Power is not the first U.N. ambassador to make unmasking requests, but Fox News reports the requests fall in the low double digits.

Power will meet with congressional intelligence committees as part of their Russia probes and is expected to appear before the House intelligence panel in a classified session next month.

It will be interesting to see exactly who winds up taking the fall for the abuses or power that occurred during the Obama Administration.

 

The Deep State Or The Police State?

Sharyl Attkisson posted an article at The Hill today about the Obama Administration’s spying on Donald Trump. I don’t care which side of the political spectrum you are on, this story should disturb you.

The article reports:

According to media reports this week, the FBI did indeed “wiretap” the former head of Trump’s campaign, Paul Manafort, both before and after Trump was elected. If Trump officials — or Trump himself — communicated with Manafort during the wiretaps, they would have been recorded, too.

But we’re missing the bigger story.

If these reports are accurate, it means U.S. intelligence agencies secretly surveilled at least a half dozen Trump associates. And those are just the ones we know about.

Besides Manafort, the officials include former Trump advisers Carter Page and Michael Flynn. Last week, we discovered multiple Trump “transition officials” were “incidentally” captured during government surveillance of a foreign official. We know this because former Obama adviser Susan Rice reportedly admitted “unmasking,” or asking to know the identities of, the officials. Spying on U.S. citizens is considered so sensitive, their names are supposed to be hidden or “masked,” even inside the government, to protect their privacy.

In May, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates acknowledged they, too, reviewed communications of political figures, secretly collected under President Obama. 

The article goes on to remind us that James Clapper assured Congress in 2013 that the NSA was not collecting data on American citizens.

The article also lists many of the violations of the rights of Congressmen, reporters, and other political figures. This is illegal.

The article concludes:

Officials involved in the surveillance and unmasking of U.S. citizens have said their actions were legal and not politically motivated. And there are certainly legitimate areas of inquiry to be made by law enforcement and intelligence agencies. But look at the patterns. It seems that government monitoring of journalists, members of Congress and political enemies — under multiple administrations — has become more common than anyone would have imagined two decades ago. So has the unmasking of sensitive and highly protected names by political officials.

Those deflecting with minutiae are missing the point. To me, they sound like the ones who aren’t thinking.

If we want to keep our privacy and our freedom, the people responsible for spying on us need to face the consequences of their breaking the law.

Totally Unacceptable Behavior

Breitbart posted an article yesterday stating that CNN had reported that the Obama Administration had wire tapped Paul Manafort before and after the election.

The article reports:

The report said the secret court that handles the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act had authorized a surveillance warrant against Manafort for an investigation that began in 2014, looking into his firm, the Podesta Group, and another firm’s lobbying work for Ukraine’s pro-Russian former ruling party.

“The surveillance was discontinued at some point last year for lack of evidence,” a source told CNN.

However, the FBI then restarted the surveillance after obtaining a new FISA warrant that extended early into this year. The report notably does not say when the new warrant was obtained. Manafort joined the Trump campaign as its chairman in May 2016.

The article reminds us of how many times this claim was denied (sometimes under oath):

The Justice Department and the FBI denied that Trump was being wiretapped.

Comey later in March disputed Trump’s claims — in testimony that lawmakers could now find misleading.

He told the House intelligence committee, “With respect to the president’s tweets about alleged wiretapping directed at him by the prior administration, I have no information that supports those tweets, and we have looked carefully inside the FBI.”

The New York Times also reported that Comey had said Trump’s claim was false, and that he had asked the Justice Department to publicly reject it, according to the BBC.

James Clapper, the former Director of National Intelligence, also told Congress that intelligence agencies did not wiretap Trump, nor did the FBI obtain a court order to monitor Trump’s phones, according to the BBC report.

President Trump was mocked when he made this claim. Now we learn that he was right. Where are the apologies? Where are the people talking about the fact that the civil rights of Paul Manafort and Donald Trump were violated? Is anyone going to hold the Justice Department accountable? I guess the only positive in this is that Donald Trump won the election despite the fact that the Obama Administration interfered–it wasn’t the Russians–it was the Obama Administration!

 

Facts–We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Facts!

The Conservative Treehouse reported yesterday that James Comey drafted his conclusions in the Clinton email server investigation before he interviewed the witnesses. Wow! The man is obviously clairvoyant–he knew exactly what their testimony would be and didn’t need to hear it. Well, not quite.

The article includes the following:

In a letter from Senator Chuck Grassley to new FBI Director Christopher Wray (full pdf below) the senator outlines some disturbing information discovered in documents reviewed by the judicial committee.

Chief among the issues was a discovery that fired FBI Director James Comey had already drafted a preliminary conclusion that Hillary Clinton was not going to be held responsible; the FBI Director’s position was created in April and May 2016 before sixteen key investigative witnesses, including Mrs. Clinton herself, were even interviewed.

I may be missing something here, but if Hillary Clinton was not responsible for setting up and using her private email server, who was?

Senator Grassley’s letter includes the following:

As of early May 2016, the FBI had not yet interviewed Secretary Clinton. Moreover, it had yet to finish interviewing sixteen other key witnesses, including Cheryl Mills, Bryan Pagliano, Heather Samuelson, Justin Cooper, and John Bentel.

These individuals had intimate and personal knowledge relating to Secretary Clinton’s
non-government server, including helping her build and administer the device. Yet, it appears that the following key FBI interviews had not yet occurred when Mr. Corney began drafting his exoneration statement:

    1. May 3, 2016 – Paul Combetta                      9. June 10, 2016 – John Bentel
    2. May 12, 2016- Sean Misko                         10. June 15, 2016 – Lewis Lukens
    3. May 17, 2016- Unnamed CIA                      11. June 21, 2016 – Justin Cooper
       employee 5                                                   12. June 21, 2016- Unnamed State
    4. May 19, 2016- Unnamed CIA                                             Dept. Employee 7
       employee 6                                                   13. June 21, 2016 – Bryan Pagliano
    5. May 24, 2016 – Heather Samuelson          14. June 21, 2016 – Purcell Lee
    6. May 26, 2016 – Marcel Lehel (aka             15. June 23, 2016-Monica Hanley
       Guccifer)                                                      16. June 29, 2016 – Hannah Richert
    7. May 28, 2016 – Cheryl Mills                        17. July 2, 2016 – Hillary Clinton
    8. June 3, 2016- Charlie Wisecarver

Conclusion first, fact-gathering second-that’s no way to run an investigation. The FBI should be held to a higher standard than that, especially in a matter of such great public interest and controversy.

Mr. Corney’s final statement acknowledged “there is evidence of potential violations of the statutes regarding the handling of classified information” but nonetheless cleared Secretary Clinton because he claimed there was no intent or obstruction of justice. Yet, evidence of destruction of emails known to be under subpoena by the House of Representatives, and subject to congressional preservation requests, was obtained in interviews around the time that Mr. Corney began drafting his exoneration statement. Moreover, the Justice Department entered into highly unusual immunity agreements with Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson in June 2016-after Mr. Corney began drafting his exoneration statement-to review Clinton email archives on their laptops.

This is the swamp. The only way to get rid of it is to fill Congress with honest people who are not currently involved in Washington politics. There are probably about ten members of Congress that are not part of the swamp. They deserve to be re-elected. All the others need to be sent packing at the earliest possible opportunity. Director Mueller needs to be fired, former Director Comey needs to be investigated and possibly jailed, and the FBI needs to be cleaned out and redone.

An Amazing Historical Event

On Thursday, Legal Insurrection posted an article about the continuing attacks on President Trump. The title of the article is, “The Slow-Motion Coup d’Etat picks up steam.”

The article lists the attempts made by the political establishment to undo the results of last November’s election. Hopefully their efforts will result in a miserable failure. I did not start out as a Trump supporter, but I believe he won the election honestly (and probably by a wider margin than is reported due to illegal votes for Hillary Clinton). The attempts to find any excuse to remove him from office are shameful.

The article reminds us:

Chuck Schumer, for example, used the alleged fact of Donald Trump being under FBI investigation as an argument against confirming Neal Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, even though Schumer (but not the public) knew from intelligence briefings that Trump was not personally under investigation.

All the while, the permanent bureaucracy, particularly in the intelligence community, started an unending and almost daily series of leaks meant to paralyze the administration.

Then FBI Director James Comey refused to tell the public what he privately told Trump on three occasions, that Trump personally was not under investigation, thereby aiding and abetting this false media attack on the administration. Comey then himself leaked non-public government information, after his termination, to manufacture an excuse to have a Special Counsel appointed. That Special Counsel, Robert Mueller, turns out to be a good friend of Comey, and is building a massive prosecutorial infrastructure in the attempt to find a crime.

At the same time, there has been unprecedented obstruction of Trump’s ability to staff his administration. Even non-controversial nominees are slow-walked by Democrats. Vast swaths of the federal bureaucracy remain under the sway of Obama holdovers and those who consider Trump illegitimate.

The purpose in all this has been to freeze and paralyze the Trump administration. If Trump could not be prevented from taking office, and cannot be physically removed from office, he will be prevented from functioning as president.

Those elected officials participating in this effort need to be removed from office.

The article lists numerous examples of career government employees working against the President and his policies. This used to be called treason.

The article concludes:

Not only is the Trump administration under unprecedented attack from outside, the foxes are inside the henhouse, and are gutting it from the inside out.

The attempt to unwind the 2016 election through paralyzing the Trump administration is a serious threat to our liberty. Our most basic of institutions, the transfer of power through elections, is under attack.

The actions of those people in government working against President Trump are not patriotic–they are treasonous and the people committing them belong in jail. It is up to the American voters to let those working to undermine a sitting President will not receive the support of the voters.

This Really Was Not Unexpected

Yesterday Breitbart posted an article about the Russian investigation. It seems as if this investigation has been going on forever, and so far nothing has been found. I am waiting for the eventual charge that someone went to a Russian tea room for a cup of tea and therefore should be prosecuted. Unfortunately, because special prosecutors tend to want to charge someone with something, all these lawyers with political leanings may eventually charge someone with a process crime (they forgot something in their testimony and gave an answer on a minor point that did not satisfy the investigators). However, it is becoming rather obvious that the tale the left has been spinning since the election of foreign intrigue tied to the Trump campaign or Trump Administration is pure fiction.

Breitbart reports:

Investor William Browder testified at the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday that Fusion GPS, the firm that had been responsible for creating and pushing the so-called “Russia dossier” against Donald Trump, had been paid by the Russian government to push for the repeal of the human rights sanctions in the Magnitsky Act of 2012. In other words, the Russian government may have been paying to smear Trump with false and salacious accusations.

Until now, the media and the Democrats have proceeded under the assumption that Russia intervened in the 2016 election by hacking the email server of the Democratic National Committee, as well as the private email of Hillary Clinton campaign chair John Podesta, and releasing their emails via Wikileaks. They have further claimed — with no evidence — that the Trump campaign may have colluded with the Russians in obtaining or releasing the emails.

The entire theory rests on the ridiculous claim that Trump had invited Russia to hack Clinton and the Democrats when he joked last July about the Russians releasing the emails Clinton had deleted from her illicit private server.  (The left-wing HuffPost observed Thursday as the anniversary that Trump “asked for Russian help in the election.”) That joke prompted then-CIA director John Brennan to convene an investigation of alleged Russian interference.

Thursday The Wall Street Journal posted an article by Kimberly Strassel (the article is not linked here because it is subscribers only) noting a connection between Fusion GPS and the Democratic party.

In an interesting move, Congressional Democrats, who were ready to hold public hearings about Russian election interference featuring Donald Trump Jr. and Paul Manafort, have decided to hold those hearings in private (where they can’t pontificate instead of asking questions). Why? Because if Donald Trump Jr. and Paul Manafort were questioned in public, then Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson would also be questioned in public. For whatever reason, the Democrats were willing to give up their dog and pony show to avoid Glenn Simpson’s public testimony (where he would have been asked who paid for the false dossier on Donald Trump).

The Wall Street Journal article asks:

What if, all this time, Washington and the media have had the Russia collusion story backward? What if it wasn’t the Trump campaign playing footsie with the Vladimir Putin regime, but Democrats? The more we learn about Fusion, the more this seems a possibility.

We know Fusion is a for-hire political outfit, paid to dig up dirt on targets. This column first outed Fusion in 2012, detailing its efforts to tar a Mitt Romney donor. At the time Fusion insisted that the donor was “a legitimate subject of public records research.”

The article at Breitbart concludes:

Or the truth could be that Russia was trying to embarrass both parties, to weaken the eventual winner. Browder told the Senate Judiciary Committee that it is common for Russia to back both sides in elections, simply to create chaos.

Regardless, the Russia conspiracy theory has now collapsed. There is no evidence that Russia was colluding with the Trump campaign. But there is evidence Russia was working against it. And the truth is only beginning to emerge.

The following quote is from Shakespeare’s Macbeth:

Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

The same thing can be said about the investigation into President Trump’s ties to Russia.

 

For Your Consideration

Posted on YouTube on July 24th:

Some things to consider while watching this video:

John Brennan is not an objective observer. He is part of the group that is attempting to prevent President Trump from actually implementing the policies that will improve the American economy.

If John Brennan is saying that Congress should refuse to follow any orders of President Trump if he fires Robert Mueller, where was he when President Obama was spying on Americans and violating the civil rights of Americans? Refusing to follow the orders of a President is called staging a coup. Is Brennan sure he wants to go on the record with that statement?

Please note that the majority of the speakers at the event where this video was taken were from CBS, CNN, The New York Times, etc. My feeling is that Brennan was spouting liberal nonsense to a liberal audience.

Just for the record, it is my opinion that Mueller should be fired. He has stacked his staff with people who hold strong pro-Hillary views and turned the investigation into a far-reaching witch hunt. His funds need to be cut immediately–Congress has been investigating Russian ties to who-knows-what for a year and found nothing. Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton’s uranium deal and President Obama’s statement to Russian President Medvedev (“This is my last election,” Obama told Medvedev. “After my election I have more flexibility.”) are ignored. It is time to stop wasting money chasing non-existent conspiracies.

For Your Consideration

The fact that I am posting this does not mean that I believe it is true–it means that I think this is a necessary item to add to the current debate.

The U.K Daily Mail posted an article today based on a National Enquirer story .

The U.K. Daily Mail article states:

Hillary Clinton and a firm with ties to the Democratic party setup President Donald Trump and his family in an attempt to destroy the billionaire businessman and politician according to the National Enquirer

The tabloid magazine, which has made no secret of its pro-Trump agenda, came to this conclusion after what they describe as an ‘exhaustive investigation’ into the matter.

These attempts by ‘evil’ Hillary to bring down her rival included luring Donald Jr. into meeting with shadowy Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskyaya claims the tabloid.

And the firm in the middle of all this is Fusion GPS according to the tabloid, the same group that allegedly compiled Christopher Steele’s scandalous dossier of claims about President Trump that was published in January.

I don’t know if this story is true or false. What I do know is that there is a group of establishment politicians in Washington that is intent on preventing President Trump from accomplishing anything. The Washington establishment has become the ‘cool’ kids at the high school lunch table who refuse to let anyone they deem unworthy to enter their group. It is high time that someone tipped their table over and sent them home.

Remember, the National Enquirer broke the John Edwards story. Lately they have a better track record than The New York Times.

Changing The Definition Of A Word For Political Purposes

John Hinderaker at Power Line posted an article today about the attempts to claim that Donald Trump, Jr., is guilty of collusion.

The article includes the Merriam-Webster dictionary definition of collusion:

secret agreement or cooperation especially for an illegal or deceitful purpose * acting in collusion with the enemy

The article further explains that definition and how it relates to the charges against Mr. Trump:

Thus, when the U.S., Russia and other countries jointly operate the International Space Station, they aren’t colluding, they are cooperating.

Liberals talk about “collusion” in connection with Trump, Jr’s meeting to paper over the fact that there was nothing wrong with it. Collecting information about corruption on the part of a candidate for office is a good thing, not a bad thing. We know from Clinton Cash that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton played a key role in turning over a large part of America’s supply of uranium to the Russians, at about the same time when Russians associated with that country’s government paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to Bill and Hillary Clinton. So we know about the quid and the quo, the only question is whether there was a pro. If the Russian lawyer had had information on this point, it would have been a public service to disclose it.

It is different, of course, if false information about a candidate is being fabricated. Thus, we can properly say that Democrats colluded in the production of a fake dossier on President Trump.

I have always felt that most of the things the Democrats accuse the Republicans of are things that the Democrats are doing. I think the make-believe case against Donald Trump, Jr., is an example of this.

The Democrats have so altered the definition of collusion that it could theoretically apply to any conversation with anyone who was remotely connected to any country other than America. It will be interesting to see if karma is going to show up in the near future.

A Tale Of Two Collusions

I’m tired of hearing about a meeting of the President’s son that resulted in nothing while at the same time a presidential candidate who actually met with a foreign power to interfere in  the 2016 election got totally ignored. Just as an aside, I don’t think foreign meddling in an election is all that unusual–look at the Obama Administration’s efforts to influence the last election in Israel. They were unsuccessful, but they certainly tried.

While the Democrats and the media are screaming that Donald Trump should be hung from the yardarm, they have totally ignored the efforts of the Clinton campaign to use the Ukrainians to opposition research on Donald Trump.

On January 11, 2017, Politico posted an article with the headline, “Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump backfire.”

The article reports:

Ukrainian government officials tried to help Hillary Clinton and undermine Trump by publicly questioning his fitness for office. They also disseminated documents implicating a top Trump aide in corruption and suggested they were investigating the matter, only to back away after the election. And they helped Clinton’s allies research damaging information on Trump and his advisers, a Politico investigation found.

A Ukrainian-American operative who was consulting for the Democratic National Committee met with top officials in the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington in an effort to expose ties between Trump, top campaign aide Paul Manafort and Russia, according to people with direct knowledge of the situation.

The Ukrainian efforts had an impact in the race, helping to force Manafort’s resignation and advancing the narrative that Trump’s campaign was deeply connected to Ukraine’s foe to the east, Russia. But they were far less concerted or centrally directed than Russia’s alleged hacking and dissemination of Democratic emails.

At this point I would like to note that the Russian hacking of Democratic emails is probably an urban legend with little basis in fact. First of all the Democratic National Committee (DNC) never allowed to FBI to directly examine their computer servers that they claimed were hacked. Second of all, how would simply releasing private information influence a campaign–would the release be damaging if it contained only mundane campaign information? Let’s not forget what the leaks contained–evidence of giving Hillary Clinton debate questions ahead of time, evidence of rigging the Democratic primary elections, and generally sleazy stuff. Had the DNC not been engaging in sleazy behavior, the leaks would not have mattered.

The purpose of sharing this information now is to remind everyone that in the mainstream media nothing is as it appears. I don’t believe Russia successfully interfered in our election. I believe they may have tried, but I don’t believe they were successful. Because our voting machines are not interconnected, it would be very difficult to actually change the results of an election–you would have to have hundreds of hackers at hundreds of locations, and voting machines would have to be connected to the internet. Although voting results are reported on the internet, the voting machines are not directly hooked up to it.. I have read reports of voting machines tallying votes incorrectly, but as far as I know, that has nothing to do with the Russians. At any rate, Donald Trump was duly elected, and it is time to move on.

A Rookie Mistake

The Trump family are not politicians (although I hope Donald Trump, Jr., will eventually find his way into politics). They are not in the habit of playing political games–they emerged from the New York City real estate business, not known for its finesse and political correctness. Now they are attempting to drain a swamp in Washington that has established itself over decades by means of deception, big money, backroom deals, etc. Draining the swamp is not going to be easy, but I believe that they are up to the task. However, I am very tired of watching the media attempt to duplicate their ‘success’ of Watergate. I don’t think this President is going to quietly step down for any reason. In fact, I suspect that those attempting to remove him unlawfully will eventually be hoisted on their own petards.

The latest Russian dust-up is about a meeting Donald Trump, Jr., had with Natalia Veselnitskaya during the presidential campaign of 2016. Ms. Veselnitskaya is a Russian lawyer. She scheduled the meeting saying that she had information on Hillary Clinton’s campaign accepting Russian money. Actually, anyone who follows the escapades of the Clinton Foundation has information on the Clintons accepting Russian money, but that is another story. When Donald Trump, Jr. met with Ms. Veselnitskaya, he discovered that the real agenda for her meeting was a discussion of the adoption of Russian children and the Magnitsky Act. The 2012 Magnitsky Act (named for Sergei Magnitsky, a lawyer who was arrested and died in a Russian prison after he discovered massive fraud by corrupt Russian officials) lets U.S. officials withhold visas and freeze financial assets of Russians suspected of human rights abuses.

So who is this lady and what are her political connections?

A picture is worth a thousand words (the photo is from The Gateway Pundit):

The article at The Gateway Pundit reports the following:

That looks like Emin Agalarov sitting next to Natalia Veselnitskaya. He was mentioned in Donald Trump Jr’s statement this morning. Emin helped set up the meeting with Veselnitskaya.

Veselnitskaya was also connected to Fusion GPS, the DNC opposition research firm that produced the fraudulent and discredited Trump Dossier.

So why was Veselnitskaya hanging out with Obama officials just days after her meeting with Donald Trump Jr.?

And why was Veselnitskaya given a privileged seat up front during the Congressional hearing?

This meeting was obviously a set-up. The deep state was at work doing mischief in case Donald Trump was elected–this was a staged, planned attack to be used at a future date. It really is time for the Democrats and the media to realize that Donald Trump is a legally elected President and that he should be allowed to do his job. The American voters will ultimately decide in four years whether or not he needs to be removed from office. The degree of opposition President Trump has faced should be an indication to all of us that the swamp is deeper and more entrenched than any of us might have imagined.

UPDATE:

There is more here than I originally found. Yesterday Paul Mirengoff at Power Line posted an article about the meeting between Donald Trump, Jr. and Natalia Veselnitskaya that included the following:

These facts are well known to anyone who has been following the news recently. What’s less known is that Veselnitskaya was not in the U.S. lawfully.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley has written to Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to complain about this and related matters. Grassley informs Kelly and Tillerson:

According to her sworn declaration, former Russian prosecutor Natalia Veselnitskaya was denied a U.S. visa to travel to the United States from Russia to participate in litigation. Although she was subsequently granted immigration parole to make the trip, her parole was set to expire on January 7, 2016. Her request to extend was denied on January 4, 2016.

Yet she was still in the U.S. in June when she met with Trump, Jr. Grassley’s letter seeks information about how could have happened.

I am sure there will be more to come.