Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
More on the Jeffery Epstein matter:

...
A Florida judge ruled Thursday that federal prosecutors, led by a man who is now President Donald Trump's secretary of labor, broke the law when they signed a plea agreement with financier Jeffrey Epstein without notifying his sex abuse victims.
Epstein, 66, reached a nonprosecution deal in 2008 with then-Miami U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta's office to halt a federal sex abuse investigation involving more than 30 teenage girls. Epstein could have faced a possible life sentence. Instead, he pleaded guilty to state charges, spent 13 months in jail and paid settlements to victims.
U.S. District Judge Kenneth A. Marra, in a 33-page ruling, said prosecutors violated the victims' rights by not informing them of the deal and instead sending a letter counseling them to have "patience."
"Particularly problematic was the government's decision to conceal the existence of the [nonprosecution agreement] and mislead the victims to believe that federal prosecution was still a possibility," Marra wrote. "When the government gives information to victims, it cannot be misleading." ...

Of course, Trump is personally very familiar with Epstein, via Mar-a-lago and flying in Epstein's pedophile plane (as did Bill Clinton).
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
Putin gave his annual speech to the Russian National Assembly yesterday. Dmitry Orlov offered the following report about Putin's talk (and you'll have to trust me on this, unless you contribute to Orlov's boat fund):

https://www.patreon.com/posts/putin-now-thinks-24859437

Speaking of Americans’ dishonesty and bad faith in accusing Russia of violating the INF treaty while it was they themselves who were violating it, he added: “...and the American satellites oink along with them.” It is rather difficult to come up with an adequate translation for the Russian verb “подхрюкивать”; “oink along with” is as close as I am able to get. The mental image is of a chorus of little pigs accompanying a big swine. The implication is obvious: Putin thinks that the Americans are swine, and that their NATO satellites are swine too.
 

Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
But what does he think about Trump? Earlier he said he was glad that Trump was elected.

Are the American satellites going along with the Deep State, which Putin also discussed, or are the American satellites going along with Trump? Or is there a difference?
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
Trump took personal responsibility for exiting the INF treaty. So it would seem reasonable to extrapolate that in Putin's scheme, Trump would be the the leader of the oink chorus. But as far as I know, he left room for plausible deniability of that inference.
 

Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
Well, supposedly today Michael Cohen is testifying to a closed House Intel Committee panel after publicly testifying to the House Oversight Committee yesterday. Most notable was the limp nature of the Trumpublican committee members, those who had made such a big deal about their constitutional oversight role during the Obama administration. The best that they could do was focus on trying to trip up Cohen, as to whether or not he had committed such as bank fraud. Clearly, they had no interest in whatever Dear Leader was down to.

One Trumpublican, Clay "Kill Them All" Higgins from Louisiana, made a complete fool of himself in accusatorily asking Cohen about where Cohen's boxes of evidence (that Cohen had been searching through recently) were, only to find out that the FBI had previously seized them and then released them back to Cohen. Incidentally(?), Higgins field deputy was just arrested for prostitution pandering, the field deputy once a sheriff's deputy under 'Captain' Higgns. Some things never change, but perhaps Higgins should have more profitably introduced his 'deputy' to pander to Trump instead?

Nothing tremendously new was revealed, while we did get to see one of the reimbursement checks paid by Trump to Cohen to cover the $130K paid to silence Stormy Daniels. One of the ironies to all this was that Cohen, a lifetime registered Democrat, had been made the official deputy finance chairman for the RNC in the Trump coup over the party. Thus, the Trumpublicans were criticizing the guy (a Dem) that had been put in charge of their party's finances.

Perhaps Cohen's best moment was when he explained to the Trumpublicans that he only had more to lose by lying and covering for Trump -- and that they should consider the same for themselves.

Maybe Trump has converted Republican Oversight into Trumpublican Undersight? For as much noise as the Republicans made about Benghazi, it was indeed very ironic for me to have recently watched a clip where a Democrat stated that Kim Jong Un would likely not surrender his nuke program because he had witnessed what happened to Gaddafi after he had surrendered his program.

So the water is just as muddy, and Cohen did also say during his sworn testimony that a transfer of presidential power away from Agent Orange would likely not be peaceful.
 
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Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
For as much noise as the Republicans made about Benghazi, it was indeed very ironic for me to have recently watched a clip where a Democrat stated that Kim Jong Un would likely not surrender his nuke program because he had witnessed what happened to Gaddafi after he had surrendered his program.
Just as had been predicted, the second Trump/Kim summit failed, with the supposed stumbling block pretext being over sanctions on NK. To make the trip worthwhile, in case of such a failure, Trump opened his visit to Vietnam with some tearful mirth, his fake bone spurs having been well cared for in his youth:

HANOI, VIETNAM—Tearing up as he described the courage he would have had no choice but to summon had he not been born into a life of luxury, President Trump reportedly took time Tuesday before the North Korea summit in Hanoi to travel south and lay a wreath at the spot where he would have died in the Vietnam War if he weren’t rich. “Today we recognize those who, like myself, would have been forced to make the ultimate sacrifice had they not come from wealthy families who could call in a favor from a doctor friend and get exempted from the draft,” said Trump, speaking for several minutes about the death he would have faced if he had been unable to afford an elite education and, instead of receiving college deferments, had been conscripted to fight in a conflict in which more than 58,000 Americans died. “I would have died bravely with my fellow soldiers right here in this field had I not had a father who could pull some strings and make sure I never had to do anything like that. So today, I reflect upon and honor all those who were able to avoid service, especially those who received a medical deferment from a podiatrist who rented office space from their dad.” Trump went on to announce that a new monument would be erected on the National Mall in Washington to honor all affluent survivors of the Vietnam draft.
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
Perhaps Cohen's best moment was when he explained to the Trumpublicans that he only had more to lose by lying and covering for Trump -- and that they should consider the same for themselves.
Coping with a foot of snow and a power outage here at the farm, I've been somewhat out of touch with this Cohen situation. But I was amazed by Cohen's warning to the Republicans; and by this summary of Cohen's testimony at the WSWS:

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/03/01/pers-m01.html

Michael Cohen, the former attorney and “fixer” for Donald Trump for more than a decade, testified for six hours about how he and his boss worked to defraud business partners and tax collectors, intimidate critics and suppress opposition to Trump’s acitvities in real estate, casino gambling, reality television and, eventually, electoral politics.
What Cohen described was a seedier version of an operation that most Americans would recognize from viewing films like The Godfather: Trump as the capo di tutti capi, the unquestioned authority who must be consulted on every decision; the children, Donald Jr., Ivanka and Eric, each now playing significant roles in the ongoing family criminal enterprise; Allen Weisselberg, CFO of the Trump Organization, the consigliere in charge of finance, mentioned by Cohen more than 20 times in the course of six hours of testimony, as the man who facilitated Trump’s schemes to evade taxes, deceive banks or stiff business partners.
Cohen himself was an enforcer: by his own account, he threatened people on Trump’s behalf at least 500 times in a ten-year period, including business associates, politicians, journalists, and anyone seeking to file complaints or gain reimbursement after they were defrauded by one or another Trump venture. The now-disbarred lawyer admitted to tape-recording clients—including Trump but many others—more than 100 times during this period.
The incidents recounted by Cohen range from the farcical (Trump browbeating colleges and even his military prep school not to release his grades or test scores), to the shabby (Trump having his own “charitable” foundation buy a portrait of himself for $60,000), to the brazenly criminal (deliberately inflating the value of properties when applying for bank loans, while deflating the value of the same properties as much as twenty-fold in order to evade taxation).
So now we have this gangster in charge of international relations. The latest flare-up is in the India-Pakistan theater, where Trump's Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has praised and given the green light to India's bombing of terrorist targets inside Pakistan. Again quoting the WSWS, an Indian geostrategist (Brahma Chellaney) has noted that this attack represents "the first time a nuclear power carried out an airstrike inside another nuclear-armed state,” and he went on to say that the action was “busting Western academic theories about the inevitability of tit-for-tat actions rapidly triggering a serious nuclear crisis.” Fortunately for world peace, Pakistan's Chinese and Russian allies seem to be granting some validity to India's side, treating the attack as a terrorist control measure and not a direct challenge to Pakistan's sovereignty. But it's a little early to be jumping to conclusions: as of this morning, Pakistan and India are continuing to trade threats, and their military forces are at high alert.
 
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Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
Coping with a foot of snow and a power outage here at the farm, I've been somewhat out of touch with this Cohen situation. But I was amazed by Cohen's warning to the Republicans; and by this summary of Cohen's testimony at the WSWS: https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/03/01/pers-m01.html
I have to admit that my intermittent real-time watching of the public hearing, and some of the immediate commentary, on Wednesday did not allow me to comprehend the scope of what was discussed over the course of the day. Not to mention that a significant portion of my random watching time was taken over by such as the usual squabbles over the inane 5 minute parliamentary rules and tangential theatrics over such as Mark Meadows tantrum over being (correctly) accused of racism.

One of the financial revelations that I missed was about Trump's 2012 false valuation of his Seven Springs Estate in Bedford NY, for the purpose of trying to obtain a $1 billion loan from Deutsche Bank to allow him to buy the Buffalo Bills NFL franchise. The bid was unsuccessful, but this misrepresentation to a bank is still a significant crime, of which is fairly frequently prosecuted.

364

An interesting side-note that was brought up in the Maddow segment is that, back in the day, Muammar Gaddafi (ironically mentioned a few posts prior) was going to rent this property from Trump while staying in New York to attend some UN event.

Also this morning, the friend of mine that brought The Onion satire piece about Trump's Vietnam farce to my attention told me that he (a Vietnam vet) had just had a discussion with a fellow American Legion member, a Trumpista, about Trump's draft dodging, via fake bone spurs. The Trumpista told my friend that it was all OK as Trump was surely too busy, back then, to get sucked into the draft. There seems no end to the rationalizations that can be made for Agent Orange Leaks (Vietnam pun intended).
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
As alarming as Cohen's testimony was, I'm not sure how much was completely new, as opposed to corroboration of allegations that have been made against the Trump organization by many of its competitors and contractors over the years.

And perhaps Cohen's "mea culpa" is not the only reason for his testimony. Eric Zeusse noticed that Cohen made the following statement to Congress on Feb. 27th:

In July 2016, days before the Democratic convention, I was in Mr. Trump’s office when his secretary announced that Roger Stone was on the phone. Mr. Trump put Mr. Stone on the speakerphone. Mr. Stone told Mr. Trump that he had just gotten off the phone with Julian Assange and that Mr. Assange told Mr. Stone that, within a couple of days, there would be a massive dump of emails that would damage Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
Mr. Trump responded by stating to the effect of “wouldn’t that be great.”
Problem is, Stone has denied that any such phone conversation took place, and Wikileaks has denied that Assange ever placed any phone call to Stone. And, Assange told the press in June 2016 that more leaked emails would be coming, so Stone wasn't telling Trump anything that wasn't already widely known; that is, if indeed the conversation between Stone and Trump did take place as Cohen reported.

It seems very plausible that this testimony from Cohen was intended to support the disinformation campaign against Julian Assange.
 
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Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
Problem is, Stone has denied that any such phone conversation took place, and Wikileaks has denied that Assange ever placed any phone call to Stone. And, Assange told the press in June 2016 that more leaked emails would be coming, so Stone wasn't telling Trump anything that wasn't already widely known; that is, if indeed the conversation between Stone and Trump did take place as Cohen reported.
The problem with this problem is that we're speaking about Roger Stone here, a stone 'lying' at the bottom of the Washington swamp for decades, along with swampy former lobbying partner Paul Manafort. Roger Stone is also part of the nexus between Trump and Richard Nixon via Roy Cohn, the infamous mob lawyer. No wonder so many Americans are seeing all this as just more "inside baseball":

Pollster Mallory Newall told Hill.TV on Friday that Michael Cohen's widely watched congressional testimony this week amounted to "inside baseball."
"This political theater that we're seeing is sort of inside baseball," Newall, research director at Ipsos Public Affairs, told host Krystal Ball on "What America's Thinking."
"There's a plurality of Americans that have no opinion or no idea this was happening," she continued. ...

The literal pin-head, Roger Stone, has recently had to retract an Instagram post showing his case's judge next to a crosshair target, albeit that the target was placed next to Judge Berman and not in front of her. Stone has also threatened the life of another witness's (Randy Credico) dog, in a seamy seeming attempt to influence Credico's testimony regarding Credico's not being Assange's intermediary against Stone's claim.

Many people may indeed be somewhat correct that this is all 'political theater', but I would suggest it is more likely and more specifically: 'political kabuki theater'. We've now had many decades of various presidential associations with organized crime, and now Trump has 'merely' brought the language overtly into the office.

That Michael Cohen was an apt replacement 'fixer' for Roy Cohn, for a decade, should seem enough to grant him some measure of credibility, especially with Trump himself constantly lauding Cohen, that is until Cohen 'flipped'. Remember that uber-conman Trump "only hires the best people", but for doing what?

Let's also remember that the House Undersight Trumpublicans criticized Cohen for wanting a White House position, but regardless of the truth here, the lifetime Democrat Cohen was made Deputy Finance Chairman of the RNC upon Trump's ascendance.

Can anybody really believe that Trump, a man who 'micromismanages' everything, didn't really know everything about the Trump Tower meeting with the Russians? That he didn't know what the server in Trump Tower was communicating to the server in Moscow's Alfa Bank? And that Trump didn't know Felix Sater, who had his office on Trump's Trump Tower business floor, the 26th? .....................................

The fact is, there are so many linkages between Trump and the white 'Russians', that if the latter are indeed 'innocent', then they should all be arrested, and shot, for felony criminal stupidity.

And if the above pollster is correct, then Trump is indeed normalizing such extreme 'inside baseball', his opiate gorging Trumpistas happily selling themselves into a new serfdom, ala Genesis 47's capitalist collaboration between Joseph and his Pharaoh.

Below, Jimmy Kimmel examines the Cohen testimony and at ~11:20 provides a brief video examination of the evolving relationship between Trump and Cohen:

 
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Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
Cunningham stated: The GW Bush administration triggered a coup in 2002 against Chavez, which failed. Then Obama tightened the screws with economic sanctions on Venezuela’s vital oil industry which precipitated the country’s current social crisis and discontent. Several waves of streets protests have occurred all with the signs that Washington has been a crucial instigating player.

At the end of last year, the Trump administration slated the Maduro government as a national security threat, and hinted it was considering military action against Venezuela. There were even White House claims that Caracas was agitating the regime caravans through Central America, which have become a bane of Trump’s fears about immigrants “invading” the US.

But what triggered the latest push from Washington may have been Russia’s more open alliance with Caracas. Last month, President Maduro was hosted in Moscow by Russia’s Vladimir Putin, when the two countries signed multi-billion-dollar partnerships for oil exploration, mining, agricultural and other trade ties.
And it should be clear, when something really important is afoot, where Trump's loyalties are (or at least, where they appear to be, based on public words & actions.) And, that Putin emerges as an advocate for social justice and democracy; whether or not he taking this position based on pure motivations.
Or perhaps Putin is merely providing the convenient pretext for more extreme American measures by Trump, Pence, and Bolton? I can't see any reason that either Putin or Erdogan would support legitimate socialism. Certainly not because Putin was once a muckity-muck in the communist KGB. His financial interests seem more aligned with the new order in Russia, converting the 'East' into the Wild Wild West.

Below is a nice interview about Venezuela by Abby Martin with a UN investigator. It briefly discusses the background of Guaido. Here we see the same practices to accept the results of democracy only when it favors them, just as Trump does. Venezuela's vast resources can not be utilized for the benefit of the Venezuelan people, but rather for the 'godly' elites of global capitalism, including Donald Trump. Again, read Genesis 47.

 

Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
A long new article by Jane Mayer in The New Yorker has come out discussing the tight marriage of the Trump White House and family to Rupert Murdoch's Fox News.

It discusses, among other things the nexus between Nixon era Roy Cohn, Trump, Murdoch and Roger Ailes. What it misses here is that Nixon and Roger Ailes had long discussed the need for just such a right wing media propaganda outlet, that came manifest under Ailes at Fox.

...
Murdoch has cultivated heads of state in Australia and Great Britain, and someone close to him says that “he’s always wanted to have a relationship with a President—he’s a businessman and he sees benefits of having a chief of state doing your bidding.” Murdoch has met every American President since Kennedy, but, the close associate says, “until now a relationship has eluded him.” Still, Murdoch’s coziness with Trump may come at a cost. Roger Ailes, during his final days at Fox, apparently warned Murdoch of the perils. According to Gabriel Sherman, a biographer of Ailes who has written about Fox for New York and Vanity Fair, Ailes told Murdoch, “Trump gets great ratings, but if you’re not careful he’s going to end up totally controlling Fox News.”
Trump became famous, in no small part, because of Rupert Murdoch. After Murdoch bought the New York Post, in 1976, he was introduced to Trump through a mutual acquaintance, Roy Cohn, the infamous legal fixer, who, as a young man, was Senator Joseph McCarthy’s chief counsel. Cohn saw the potential for tabloid synergy: Trump could attain celebrity in the pages of the Post as a playboy mogul, and Murdoch could sell papers by chronicling Trump’s exploits.
In private, Murdoch regarded Trump with disdain, seeing him as a real-estate huckster and a shady casino operator. But, for all their differences, the two men had key traits in common. They both inherited and expanded family enterprises—an Australian newspaper; an outer-borough New York City real-estate firm—but felt looked down upon by people who were richer and closer to the centers of power. As Edward Luce, of the Financial Times, has noted, both men have tapped into anti-élitist resentment to connect with the public and to increase their fortunes. Trump and Murdoch also share a transactional approach to politics, devoid of almost any ideology besides self-interest. ...

The following excerpt is one of several places that mention Murdoch's supposed chafing at Trump's (white) 'nativist', anti-immigration stance, but perhaps this is more of Murdoch being Machiavellian, and "keeping his fingerprints" off the machinations:

...
David Axelrod, who was Barack Obama’s chief strategist, believes that Murdoch has long put his business interests above any political concerns. He recalls attending a dinner where Murdoch pushed him to move ahead on immigration reform. Axelrod suggested that it would help if Fox stopped fanning nativist hysteria, and he says that Murdoch responded, “You’ll have to talk to Roger about that,” as if he had no sway over Fox. Axelrod says, “There are probably a lot of aspects of Trumpism that he’s uncomfortable with. But ultimately he’s a businessman. And it’s useful to have a friend who’s the President, particularly if there are close regulatory calls, and a President who is untroubled by the rules and norms in that regard.” ...

The article discusses that a (seeming) rift developed for a period between Trump and Murdoch over Trump's immigration stance and that Murdoch had frequently privately ridiculed Trump. But as Trump had won the presidency, Rupert warmed up, and FNC changed its focus from questioning power to defending Trump power:

...
As Murdoch’s relations with the White House have warmed, so has Fox’s coverage of Trump. During the Obama years, Fox’s attacks on the President could be seen as reflecting the adversarial role traditionally played by the press. With Trump’s election, the network’s hosts went from questioning power to defending it. Yochai Benkler, a Harvard Law School professor who co-directs the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, says, “Fox’s most important role since the election has been to keep Trump supporters in line.” The network has provided a non-stop counternarrative in which the only collusion [over Uranium One - rs] is between Hillary Clinton and Russia; Robert Mueller, the special counsel, is perpetrating a “coup” by the “deep state”; Trump and his associates aren’t corrupt, but America’s law-enforcement officials and courts are; illegal immigration isn’t at a fifteen-year low, it’s “an invasion”; and news organizations that offer different perspectives are “enemies of the American people.”
Benkler’s assessment is based on an analysis of millions of American news stories that he and two co-authors, Robert Faris and Hal Roberts, undertook for their 2018 book, “Network Propaganda: Manipulation, Disinformation and Radicalization in American Politics.” Benkler told me that he and his co-authors had expected to find “symmetric polarization” in the left-leaning and the right-leaning media outlets. Instead, they discovered that the two poles of America’s media ecosystem function very differently. “It’s not the right versus the left,” Benkler says. “It’s the right versus the rest.” ...

Perhaps more correctly, this should be stated: "the Trump populist neo-right versus the rest".

Jerry, are you going to defend Putin against his colluding with Hillary?

Mayer apocalyptically concludes with:

...
After Fox completes the spinoff of its entertainment properties to Disney, the news channel will be part of a much smaller company, under the day-to-day supervision of Lachlan Murdoch. Like Rupert, Lachlan is a conservative, but there’s talk around Fox that he may want to bring the news network closer to the center-right. The biggest test yet of Fox’s journalistic standards is the impending showdown over Mueller’s findings. For two years, the network has been priming its viewers to respond with extraordinary anger should the country’s law-enforcement authorities close in on the President. According to Media Matters, in the first year after Mueller was appointed Hannity alone aired four hundred and eighty-six segments attacking the federal criminal investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election; thirty-eight per cent of those segments claimed that law-enforcement officials had broken the law. In recent weeks, Hannity has spoken of “a coup,” and a guest on Laura Ingraham’s program, the lawyer Joseph diGenova, declared, “It’s going to be total war. And, as I say to my friends, I do two things—I vote and I buy guns.”
Jerry Taylor, the co-founder of the Niskanen Center, a think tank in Washington for moderates, says, “In a hypothetical world without Fox News, if President Trump were to be hit hard by the Mueller report, it would be the end of him. But, with Fox News covering his back with the Republican base, he has a fighting chance, because he has something no other President in American history has ever had at his disposal—a servile propaganda operation.”

Mayer discusses in other places in the article how Fox and Trump seemed to be dancing together, while Trump advanced to the presidency, albeit that this must have been coincidental. But was it?
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
The problem with this problem is that we're speaking about Roger Stone here,
Yes, but how does it benefit Stone to deny that this conversation took place, if in fact Cohen is telling the truth that it did? Wouldn't it benefit Team Trump to at least agree on their stories? While neither Cohen nor Stone has any personal credibility whatsoever, no one has ever caught Wikileaks intentionally lying about anything. And, Wikileaks' claim that they had already warned about the email release, is independently verifiable.

That Michael Cohen was an apt replacement 'fixer' for Roy Cohn, for a decade, should seem enough to grant him some measure of credibility,
Are you trying to say here that we should take Cohen's word over both Wikileaks and Stone, just because he's successor to Roy Cohn? I'm not seeing the logic here.

Team Trump and all good Democrats agree that Assange should rot in jail. Would you agree? If so, why: because you believe he colluded with Stone, or because he never said anything about 9/11? Or are all those stories about Assange's plight fake news too, and you think he's really vacationing in Corsica?

Can anybody really believe that Trump, a man who 'micromismanages' everything, didn't really know everything about the Trump Tower meeting with the Russians? That he didn't know what the server in Trump Tower was communicating to the server in Moscow's Alfa Bank? And that Trump didn't know Felix Sater, who had his office on Trump's Trump Tower business floor, the 26th?
Who is denying any of this? Yes, Trump's Mafia was making deals with the Russian oligarchs. The questions I've been asking are: (1) did these deals really make Trump into a Russian puppet, or were these mutually beneficial (if sleazy) deals between equal partners; (2) Were the Russians trying to throw the election to Trump, or were they just running a click-bait operation; (3) Did the Russians steal Hillary's data and give it to Wikileaks, or was it some combination of Seth Rich and/or Manafort's Ukrainian friends; (4) Were Putin and the Russian government involved in any of this.

Or perhaps Putin is merely providing the convenient pretext for more extreme American measures by Trump, Pence, and Bolton? I can't see any reason that either Putin or Erdogan would support legitimate socialism.
What's going on in Venezuela is not exactly "socialism", although it might look that way compared to Trump's ideal of monopoly capitalism. By all accounts, Venezuela still has a white European-descended elite class in control of the mass media and large swaths of the economy. Sounds like a mixed system to me.

I never said that Putin's reasons for supporting and trading with Venezuela are pure humanitarian. There's an obvious element of geopolitics involved. But my point is, Trump is not acting the part of Putin's slave here.

You're quoting a post of mine from 6 weeks ago. Since then, things have gone so badly awry for Trump's coup in Venezuela, that now Justin Raimondo can argue with a straight face that Trump planned the entire fiasco just to "stick the neocons with a well-publicized failure." Or maybe Trump did do it entirely for Putin's benefit, who knows. But Bolton and Abrams are still in their places, Trump looks like Fool #1 in the play, and the war's not over yet.
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
Jerry, are you going to defend Putin against his colluding with Hillary?
I'm not sure if it was "collusion" or straight bribery. If you read through the "snopes" fact check, Hillary and Bill come across as more than a little bit sleazy, if not actionably guilty; the Russian uranium company was a winner; but there's not a scrap of evidence mentioned that Putin knew anything about it.
 
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Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
Yes, but how does it benefit Stone to deny that this conversation took place, if in fact Cohen is telling the truth that it did? Wouldn't it benefit Team Trump to at least agree on their stories? While neither Cohen nor Stone has any personal credibility whatsoever, no one has ever caught Wikileaks intentionally lying about anything. And, Wikileaks' claim that they had already warned about the email release, is independently verifiable.
Dunno Jerry, there is a lot that we still don't know, including about the appearance of one of Cohen's phones, at least, in Prague.

Is it possible that Stone, a long, long-time Trump associate got set-up? Yes. And in which I still suspect that we are all still getting punked, whether we are not Trumpistas or are.

There is a Wikileaks associate under indictment, and it appears that Assange is under a sealed indictment, that was 'accidentally revealed in a court filing not too long ago. For whatever that's worth.

Are you trying to say here that we should take Cohen's word over both Wikileaks and Stone, just because he's successor to Roy Cohn? I'm not seeing the logic here.

Team Trump and all good Democrats agree that Assange should rot in jail. Would you agree? If so, why: because you believe he colluded with Stone, or because he never said anything about 9/11? Or are all those stories about Assange's plight fake news too, and you think he's really vacationing in Corsica?
I believe Cohen to the extent that his claims can be corroborated. He has admitted to being Trump's 'fixer', not his lawyer, while Trump is still claiming that Cohen was his decade long, now incompetent 'lawyer', not his criminal, RICO fixer. So yes, I believe him. Could Cohen be shading something? Absolutely.

Team Trump used to "LOVE Wikileaks". What changed Jerry? Are you sure about Team Trump here?

I'm not sure what to believe about Assange and Wikileaks, as to their real agenda. I do believe there is a real Deep State, only that Trump et al has mischaracterized it, weaponized its reality against his base and us; and I see no reason to trust Wikileaks either.
The questions I've been asking are: (1) did these deals really make Trump into a Russian puppet, or were these mutually beneficial (if sleazy) deals between equal partners;
If this happened, then yes, absolutely, Trump would be Putin's puppet -- under any conventional analysis and logic. One that doesn't include the likelihood that Putin is some other entity's puppet that is. But Trump already has so much dirty Russian money, that Putin knows about (even if he didn't control it going to Trump) that he would own Trump in any case. Eric, or Don Jr., is famously on record as stating that most of the Trump money is of Russian origin. BTW, the Trump name is listed over 3,000 times in the various Panama Papers, of which Russians were heavily involved as investors - with laundering ties back to Putin. The latter via such as Putin's cello playing friend.
(2) Were the Russians trying to throw the election to Trump, or were they just running a click-bait operation;
Doesn't really matter to me, but I see no reason why they would not help elect Trump, given Trump's stated love for them, and that he wanted so badly to get his Trump Tower Moscow deal, and that he had already taken so much of their money. It would be insanely stupid of Putin et al. not to do so, and I don't think they are stupid. But perhaps they were just taking orders?

Perhaps Trump's (and Putin's) handlers were punking us when Trump invited the Russian delegation into the Oval Office (and when Trump told them that he got Comey off his back) and when he privately met with Putin several times and then swore the translator to secrecy and when the Republican platform got changed to favor Russia, and when he dragged his feet on implementing the additional sanctions on Russia. The original sanctions of which he had Flynn discussing on how to reduce.

The amazing thing, to me, about the entire Trump tableau is how open Trump is in regard too his various behaviors. Behaviors of which anybody else would have been tarred and feathered. He can indeed "kill somebody and get away with it". He's even openly supporting his friends in Saudi Arabia, of whom he also gets a ton of money.

Now, it is being stated that Trump is considering that he must run and win election in 2020, just to stay out of prison. And, if this is true, the logic would be that either he or a family compatriot must succeed him. MSNBC has been running segments discussing that the republic is indeed dead (a book discussion. And Brennan bizarrely stated that Mueller would likely avoid releasing more indictments on the Ides of March (next week), the implications of which should be obvious.
Did the Russians steal Hillary's data and give it to Wikileaks, or was it some combination of Seth Rich and/or Manafort's Ukrainian friends;
Dunno, except that Manafort's Ukrainian friends are said to be pro-Russian Ukrainians. If this is incorrect, then this is part of the larger psyop. Oleg Deripaska, for one, is a Russian, close to Putin. Did Manafort owe millions to Deripaska or not? Did Deripaska take pressure off Manafort once Manafort became Trump's campaign manager? Did Manafort get the Republican platform on Russia changed or not? Was Manafort, like Stone, a long time associate of Trump, even owning a condo in Trump Tower, but they all said that Manafort had to be introduced to Trump, or not?
(4) Were Putin and the Russian government involved in any of this.
Can't definitively say, but as I've been discussing, so much of this is so brazen, the circumstances look so obvious as the collusion of Stalin (as documented in Suvorov's Icebreaker) in making Operation Barbarossa an initial success. Such is likely the reason for Trump's storm of Chaos. It is all hiding in plain sight, people are too overwhelmed in the shitstorm snow of minutia, to see the forest for the fake trees.
What's going on in Venezuela is not exactly "socialism", although it might look that way compared to Trump's ideal of monopoly capitalism. By all accounts, Venezuela still has a white European-descended elite class in control of the mass media and large swaths of the economy. Sounds like a mixed system to me.
I would consider a hybrid economy, where the state ensures that such as natural resources benefit all citizens to be one form of legitimate 'socialism'. This is what Venezuela and Mexico, and to some extent, Alaska, have been doing. But, as I've been discussing on other threads, any deviancy from strict Randian, Austrian School economics, is summarily labeled extremist, where any form of socialism is a form of communism, rather than vice-versa.
I never said that Putin's reasons for supporting and trading with Venezuela are pure humanitarian. There's an obvious element of geopolitics involved. But my point is, Trump is not acting the part of Putin's slave here.
Why do you keep obsessing on the issue of Trump being a slave of Putin? It's only vast appearances that make Trump seem so. But appearance is not always reality.

edited 3/6/19
 
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Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
There is a Wikileaks associate under indictment,
I think you mean Chelsea Manning? There's a lot more about that, here in this article by Caitlin Johnstone. The entire article is well worth a careful reading.

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2019/03/06/russiagate-grand-wizard-deceives-audience-about-assange/

As it turns out, whistleblower Chelsea Manning has been subpoenaed to testify before a grand jury in a secret case investigating Assange for his 2010 role in the WikiLeaks publication of military war logs and diplomatic cables. Manning served seven years in prison for leaking those documents to the transparency advocacy outlet before her sentence was commuted by President Obama, meaning, obviously, that this sealed case has nothing to do with the 2016 leaks Russiagaters have been fiendishly obsessing over. Indeed, the Washington Post reported yesterday that “U.S. officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of grand jury secrecy, say the case is based on [Assange’s] pre-2016 conduct, not the election hacks that drew the attention of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III.” [....]​
On last night’s episode of MSNBC’s most popular show, Maddow blatantly deceived her audience by weaving this story about the Chelsea Manning subpoena into her conspiratorial Russiagate ramblings about Roger Stone, despite those stories having absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with one another.

Team Trump used to "LOVE Wikileaks".
What makes you say that? If Trump loves Wikileaks, why doesn't he pardon Assange? That is, if there was anything to pardon Assange about. He's been hiding in conditions as bad a solitary confinement, mostly because of that "secret" grand jury indictment that's been waiting for him since 2011. If Trump "loved" Assange, he could just quash that indictment, and Assange could walk free.

If this happened, then yes, absolutely, Trump would be Putin's puppet -- under any conventional analysis and logic.
I'm not seeing this. If "what" happened exactly? And by what logic? Everybody already knows that Trump has done a lot of business with Russians. He's in the Panama Papers 3,000 times. His own son knows it and has said as much. So if Putin knows it too, how does that help him? How does he gain any leverage by knowing the same thing everyone else already knows?

I see no reason why they would not help elect Trump
Except that we have just discussed that Hillary was also quite possibly taking bribes from Russians. Maybe they didn't care who won, and maybe that's why their actions seemed so chaotic and unmotivated, and so insignificant in the overall scheme.

The amazing thing, to me, about the entire Trump tableau is how open Trump is in regard too his various behaviors. Behaviors of which anybody else would have been tarred and feathered. He can indeed "kill somebody and get away with it".
First of all, you forget that Bill Clinton has been credibly accused of murdering many political opponents. Bush II, not to be outdone, started wars in Afghanistan and Iraq on false pretenses (911) and killed who-knows-how-many millions. Obama toned it down and targeted specific individuals for drone murders. Nothing new here about killing and getting away with it.

The amazing thing to me is that with all Trump's crimes, the only thing anyone in the mainstream ever talks about is how he's a Russian puppet. And that's not true.

I would consider a hybrid economy, where the state ensures that such as natural resources benefit all citizens to be one form of legitimate 'socialism'.
Well then, wouldn't you also need to consider Russia as a form of legitimate socialism? They've re-nationalized their oil industry, just as much so as Venezuela.

https://www.thedailybeast.com/russia-re-nationalizing-its-oil

Why do you keep obsessing on the issue of Trump being a slave of Putin? It's only vast appearances that make Trump so. But appearance is not always reality.
I thought it was you who keeps obsessing about it. But appearances don't make it so, aside from mainstream media propaganda BS.
 

Richard Stanley

Well-Known Member
I think you mean Chelsea Manning? There's a lot more about that, here in this article by Caitlin Johnstone. The entire article is well worth a careful reading.
No, David House. https://www.thedailybeast.com/wikileaks-veteran-i-cooperated-with-feds-in-exchange-for-immunity

He was subpoenaed, not indicted.

What makes you say that? If Trump loves Wikileaks, why doesn't he pardon Assange? That is, if there was anything to pardon Assange about
He would have to be charged in the USA before he could be pardoned. Trump does not have authority to pardon anybody for British charges.

Trump said he loves Wikileaks. Of course, that means he is lying, because every sentence he states is a lie. So, OK I'm wrong.

It's all a charade Jerry. Everything -- including Fake Saint / Fake Savior Putin.
I'm not seeing this. If "what" happened exactly? And by what logic? Everybody already knows that Trump has done a lot of business with Russians. He's in the Panama Papers 3,000 times. His own son knows it and has said as much. So if Putin knows it too, how does that help him? How does he gain any leverage by knowing the same thing everyone else already knows?
You mean that everybody is OK with the emperor having no clothes. OK, I see your POV here. The problem is we're living in the transitional state where some people (sometimes me) have a hard time accepting that the norms have changed, even though they know that they have. And, furthermore, that things have really been corrupt since before George Washington. The difference between reality and perception, or that for some, 'perception' is reality.

For those wanting to imagine they are yet in the fantasy world of good guys versus bad guys, then having it aggressively rubbed in their nose that Trump (like the Clintons or Putin or ...........................................) is essentially an organized crime figure robs them of this fantasy illusion. I have recently been trying to figure out an articulation of that we should indeed might better be looking at the world and history this way. Kings, popes, presidents, etc.
Except that we have just discussed that Hillary was also quite possibly taking bribes from Russians. Maybe they didn't care who won, and maybe that's why their actions seemed so chaotic and unmotivated, and so insignificant in the overall scheme.
Maybe so, but Trump better fits the paradigm for populist pandering (within the context of the way I see matters playing out). To me, they are all role players, such as the totally feckless campaign of Hillary, despite being told so by her campaign people. And perhaps the Russians have been made unwitting foils in all of this, but I can't see why Putin has been playing into the Western narrative if he is so innocent or smart.

First of all, you forget that Bill Clinton has been credibly accused of murdering many political opponents. Bush II, not to be outdone, started wars in Afghanistan and Iraq on false pretenses (911) and killed who-knows-how-many millions. Obama toned it down and targeted specific individuals for drone murders. Nothing new here about killing and getting away with it.
Right, but they didn't brag that they could do so. They helped maintain the fantasy bubble. They did not assert that the media and their political opponents were 'enemies' either. As I have also suggested, Trump's role may be 'merely' to hit the reset button and help make us forget the crimes of the others, by comparison.
The amazing thing to me is that with all Trump's crimes, the only thing anyone in the mainstream ever talks about is how he's a Russian puppet. And that's not true.
You don't watch the MSM, but in any case, for all their sins they do talk about a lot more that the Russian investigation. You would have to search high and low to find any aspect of the Trump administration that isn't FUBAR, and this gets discussed a lot. But if one is spending all their time obsessed with protecting Russia then one might indeed feel that the MSM does nothing but talk about Russia. I don't have the energy to comment on all of the Trump shit, Russia or otherwise, otherwise this thread would be 1,000 pages by now.
I thought it was you who keeps obsessing about it. But appearances don't make it so, aside from mainstream media propaganda BS.
I should have stated "It's only vast appearances that make Trump seem so." I will correct this.

As I have stated before, I am concerned with the narrative, true or false, that Trump is such. If he is not so, then Trump, and Putin, are particularly inept at not allowing themselves to be portrayed as such, or they are wittingly "playing these roles", for the greater good (of the elite douchebags' larger project). I think you are spending so much time in alternative far-left media that you aren't allowing yourself to comprehend this narrative.
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
Trump does not have authority to pardon anybody for British charges.
There are no British charges. There's only an old British arrest warrant, based on some even older Swedish rape accusation, which was never a charge either, and which everyone has long since admitted was completely bogus.

And, Sweden and Britain are both American puppet states. If Trump (and/or his deep state masters) wanted Assange set free, it would be done in a moment.

You don't watch the MSM, but in any case, for all their sins they do talk about a lot more that the Russian investigation.
This is a fair criticism. I can hardly bear to watch or read the MSM. It fills me with anger and despair to give them the time of day. And furthermore, clicking on the New York Times or WaPo website quickly leads to demands for cash money, which I refuse to give them. So I rely on second-hand reports of what they're saying, for the most part. And those second-hand reports, in alternative media of all ideological persuasions, seem to indicate that the Russian narrative is always front and center. Yes, there has been some discussion about Trump's wall, and his tax returns, and his staff turnover.
 
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