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Author Topic:   The Trump Presidency
Percy
Member
Posts: 17646
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 1921 of 2494 (828484)
02-19-2018 3:57 PM


Trump Worst American President of All Time
As if there was any doubt, a New York Times survey of 170 members of the Presidents and Executive Politics section of the American Political Science Association found that Trump is the worst American president of all time: How Does Trump Stack Up Against the Best — and Worst — Presidents?. He has three years to climb out of gutter.

--Percy


    
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16035
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.8


(4)
Message 1922 of 2494 (828488)
02-20-2018 12:54 AM


When he talks to Mueller, he will perjure himself eight times before Mueller gets his coat off.


  
Percy
Member
Posts: 17646
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 1923 of 2494 (828495)
02-20-2018 10:05 AM


CNN Gets It Wrong
An article on today's CNN's website, Trump is helping to undermine US democracy. That's just what Russia wants, gets it wrong when describing how the Mueller indictment says "unwitting" persons interacted with Russians:

quote:
Friday's indictment noted that Russian representatives interacted only with "unwitting" Trump campaign aides...

That's not what the indictment said. I now quote from the indictment

quote:
Some Defendants, posing as US. persons and without revealing their Russian association, communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign and with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities.

The indictment says, "unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign," not "Trump campaign aides." A campaign aide is an assistant to an important person in the campaign, not "unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign." This section of the indictment is definitely not referring to Donald Jr. or Kushner or Sessions or Popadopoulos and so forth, and definitely not to Trump himself. It is referring to ordinary rank and file workers for the Trump campaign.

The indictment also includes "other political activists" among the unwitting.

This claim by Trump supporters that the indictment absolves Trump and everyone in his campaign of colluding with Russians should be countered at every opportunity, because it is an obvious and shameful misrepresentation of what the indictment actually says.

--Percy


Replies to this message:
 Message 1924 by jar, posted 02-20-2018 10:32 AM Percy has responded

    
jar
Member
Posts: 30838
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 1924 of 2494 (828497)
02-20-2018 10:32 AM
Reply to: Message 1923 by Percy
02-20-2018 10:05 AM


Re: CNN Gets It Wrong
It's early. These are just the first feints in a long term game. There are two more significant CNN stories, one showing Mueller looking into Kushner's foreign financing and the other charging a lawyer making false statements to Federal Authorities.

Both open the door to continued exploration of Trump Inc. finances.


My Sister's Website: Rose Hill Studios     My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1923 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 10:05 AM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 1925 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 11:25 AM jar has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 17646
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 1925 of 2494 (828503)
02-20-2018 11:25 AM
Reply to: Message 1924 by jar
02-20-2018 10:32 AM


Re: CNN Gets It Wrong
jar writes:

...the other charging a lawyer making false statements to Federal Authorities.

The Washington Post also has an article: Son-in-law of Russian businessman to plead guilty to making false statements in Mueller probe.

Neither the CNN article nor the Washington Post article is very clear (at least to me), but the information document actually filed by Mueller's office is very clear. It says that Alex Van der Zwaan made false statements to the Special Counsel's Office and agents of the FBI:

  • He said that he and Person A last communicated in 2014 about Person A's family when in fact he last spoke to Person A in September, 2016, about a report on the trial of Yulia Tymoshenko (Ukrainian politician) and surreptitiously recorded the call.

  • He said that he did not know why an email between him and Person A in September, 2016, was not produced to the Special Counsel's Office when in fact he deleted that email and a number of other emails between him and Law Firm A.

  • He said that he and Richard Gates last communicated in August, 2016, in an innocuous text message when in fact he last spoke to Gates in September, 2016, about the same report on the Tymoshenko trial and surreptitiously recorded the call.

The information document is short and to the point and an easier read than either of the two news articles.

So why does Mueller care? My guess is that for Mueller the Van der Zwaan lies are just leverage to get him to enter into a plea deal in return for his testimony, but it's unclear why. It is within Mueller's mandate to pursue any illegal activity that comes to his attention in the course of his investigation, so it is possible that this has nothing to do with the Russia scandal and is just related to money laundering committed by Gates and Mannafort that Mueller uncovered during the investigation. But it is also possible that Gates, Mannafort and Van der Zwaan know something about Trump campaign involvement with Russian election meddling.

Stay tuned.

--Percy

Edited by Percy, : Grammar.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1924 by jar, posted 02-20-2018 10:32 AM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 1926 by NoNukes, posted 02-20-2018 12:27 PM Percy has acknowledged this reply
 Message 1927 by jar, posted 02-20-2018 1:03 PM Percy has acknowledged this reply

    
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 1926 of 2494 (828513)
02-20-2018 12:27 PM
Reply to: Message 1925 by Percy
02-20-2018 11:25 AM


Re: CNN Gets It Wrong
So why does Mueller care? My guess is that Mueller the Van der Zwaan lies are just leverage to get him to enter into a plea deal in return for his testimony, but it's unclear why

I've got a couple of guesses. Mueller is making no assumptions about where things will go, so he is following the money. Unlike the assumptions that Republicans might make, and Democrats might wish for, Muller isn't out to indict Trump's associates. He is following the evidence just as he should be. My guess is that this is the low hanging fruit. Things will get a little more heated when he indicts folks he can actually grab and get to talk, and surely that is coming.

Secondly, these indictments might get Trump and others off of his case. Mueller is definitely onto something really big and he is getting results that even staunch Trump supporters would have trouble dismissing. Mueller's results are helping to save his job.

From a political standpoint, it is also getting harder and harder for Trump to ignore the sanctions passed by Congress and at some point perhaps Congress will do something about that.

I am not going to speculate on who is "riding dirty" and what Americans will be caught up in this. But I'm pretty well pleased with what I see Mueller doing so far.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

We got a thousand points of light for the homeless man. We've got a kinder, gentler, machine gun hand. Neil Young, Rockin' in the Free World.

Worrying about the "browning of America" is not racism. -- Faith

I hate you all, you hate me -- Faith


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1925 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 11:25 AM Percy has acknowledged this reply

  
jar
Member
Posts: 30838
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 1.7


(1)
Message 1927 of 2494 (828517)
02-20-2018 1:03 PM
Reply to: Message 1925 by Percy
02-20-2018 11:25 AM


Re: CNN Gets It Wrong
Percy writes:

It is within Mueller's mandate to pursue any illegal activity that comes to his attention in the course of his investigation, so it is possible that this has nothing to do with the Russia scandal and is just related to money laundering committed by Gates and Mannafort that Mueller uncovered during the investigation. But it is also possible that Gates, Mannafort and Van der Zwaan know something about Trump campaign involvement with Russian election meddling.

That is the real issue, "It is within Mueller's mandate to pursue any illegal activity that comes to his attention in the course of his investigation, so it is possible that this has nothing to do with the Russia scandal and is just related to money laundering committed by Gates and Mannafort that Mueller uncovered during the investigation." and that is the threat to Trump Inc. If Trump Inc can be tied in anyway to Russian money laundering the effects would go way beyond the mere Presidency.

That Nation States interfere with the internal politics of other Nation States has never been doubted and that Russia interfered in US internal politics has pretty much been established.

What I find amazing though is that Russia thinking "Donald Trump could be the worst possible President of the US so let's push Trump and oppose EVERYBODY but Trump " seems to be bothering il Donald more than the possible effects of money laundering connected to Trump Inc.


My Sister's Website: Rose Hill Studios     My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1925 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 11:25 AM Percy has acknowledged this reply

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 17646
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 1928 of 2494 (828518)
02-20-2018 1:03 PM


Collusion by the Trump Campaign Proven Six Months Ago?
I just became aware of this report from the Center for American Progress from August 2, 2017: Russiagate: The Depth of Collusion. I quote an email exchange from the report between Rob Goldstone (head of Oui 2 Entertainment that assisted the Trump organization in bringing the 2013 Miss Universe pageant to Russia) and Donald Trump Jr.:

quote:
The email sent to Donald Trump Jr. by Rob Goldstone at 10:36 a.m. on June 3 said:

“The Crown prosecutor of Russia [Yuri Chaika, Russian Prosector General] met with his father Aras [Agalarov] this morning and in their meeting offered to provide the Trump campaign with some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia and would be very useful to your father. This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump—helped along by Aras and Emin [Agalarov].” [emphasis added]

Donald Trump Jr. responded 17 minutes later at 10:53 a.m.:

“Thanks Rob I appreciate that… if it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer. Could we do a call first thing next week when I am back?” [emphasis added]

The meeting took place six days later with Natalia Veselnitskaya, who was described to Donald Trump Jr. as “the Russian government attorney;” Rinat Akhmetshin, a Russian-born lobbyist who was formerly a Soviet intelligence officer; and Irakly Kaveladze, an executive in the company owned by the Kremlin-linked oligarch who helped arrange the meeting.


While I've seen this email exchange described before (especially the "I love it" part), I've never seen the actual emails. I find it difficult taking seriously exchanges only indirectly described in news articles. What people actually wrote or said written out in black and white is much more convincing.

The report represents that there were actually two campaigns to elect Trump, one by the Trump campaign and one by the Russians. The key question is whether there was any collusion between the two campaigns. Seeing these email excerpts makes much more real to me what the report says next, that this by itself is sufficient evidence that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians:

quote:
This is collusion. The purpose of this meeting was to obtain information from the Russian government that was damaging to their opponent, explicitly as part of Russia’s broader government “support for Mr. Trump.” Top Trump campaign officials knew the purpose and participated. This latest revelation, with all the other information now known, confirms that the Trump campaign knew about the Russian effort to intervene in the election and encouraged and participated in the effort both in private and in public.

The undisputed facts about the June 9 meeting point to clear intent to coordinate with the Russian government’s covert intelligence operation to influence the election. The apparent eagerness on the part of the most senior members of the Trump campaign to meet with Kremlin-linked figures; the willingness to acquire and use material provided by the Russians; the failure to report the meeting to U.S. law enforcement; the subsequent repeated public denials that any meetings with Russians had occurred; the misleading statements made about the meetings in the face of evidence that they had occurred; and the denial of any Russian election interference demonstrated that the Trump campaign was a willing and capable partner with Moscow in its covert influence operations targeting the election.


Yes, this is collusion. Mueller already has enough information to wrap this all up in the language of conspiracy (which is the word used in legal statutes), so he works on to discover the exact extent of Trump campaign involvement regarding campaign aides and Trump himself. I hope he's not expending too much effort on pre-2016 money laundering charges against Gates and Mannafort - I hope that's just leverage for gaining more testimony about Russian collusion.

The report is long but makes good reading. It contains much information that we've probably all seen mentions of in news articles, but never in original form and never gathered in one place. It's incredible that it only represents what was publicly known six months ago.

Note that the report, though it appears to me to be fact focused, is from a partisan group. The Center for American Progress was founded by John Podesta, chairman of the Clinton campaign and he of the hacked emails that WikiLeaks dribbled out during the 2016 election campaign.

--Percy


Replies to this message:
 Message 1929 by PaulK, posted 02-20-2018 1:48 PM Percy has responded
 Message 1934 by NoNukes, posted 02-20-2018 3:35 PM Percy has responded

    
PaulK
Member
Posts: 14343
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 1.6


Message 1929 of 2494 (828521)
02-20-2018 1:48 PM
Reply to: Message 1928 by Percy
02-20-2018 1:03 PM


Re: Collusion by the Trump Campaign Proven Six Months Ago?
While the meeting took place and it is certain that the intent was to arrange a deal between the Trump campaign and the Russian government it’s not clear that they got any further than the meeting. It doesn’t seem that the Trump campaign got any “dirt” on Clinton - which is what the Russians offered to get the meeting.

It’s pretty bad - there was an offer of collusion and Trump jr was definitely interested - but we haven’t seen the evidence that there was anything more than talk.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1928 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 1:03 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 1930 by frako, posted 02-20-2018 1:53 PM PaulK has not yet responded
 Message 1931 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 2:15 PM PaulK has responded

    
frako
Member
Posts: 2792
From: slovenija
Joined: 09-04-2010
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 1930 of 2494 (828522)
02-20-2018 1:53 PM
Reply to: Message 1929 by PaulK
02-20-2018 1:48 PM


Re: Collusion by the Trump Campaign Proven Six Months Ago?
It’s pretty bad - there was an offer of collusion and Trump jr was definitely interested - but we haven’t seen the evidence that there was anything more than talk.

Thats why they then followed legal protocol and informed the FBI right? And its also the reason trump immediatly enacted sanction's against these russian oligarchs, and not ignored them since they had 98% support in the senate.

Edited by frako, : No reason given.


Christianity, One woman's lie about an affair that got seriously out of hand

What are the Christians gonna do to me ..... Forgive me, good luck with that.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1929 by PaulK, posted 02-20-2018 1:48 PM PaulK has not yet responded

    
Percy
Member
Posts: 17646
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 1931 of 2494 (828525)
02-20-2018 2:15 PM
Reply to: Message 1929 by PaulK
02-20-2018 1:48 PM


Re: Collusion by the Trump Campaign Proven Six Months Ago?
PaulK writes:

It’s pretty bad - there was an offer of collusion and Trump jr was definitely interested - but we haven’t seen the evidence that there was anything more than talk.

Conspiracy requires little more than talk. Some overt act is required, but that could be anything. Here's the definition of conspiracy from the Cornell law library.

quote:
An agreement between two or more people to commit an illegal act, along with an intent to achieve the agreement's goal. Most U.S. jurisdictions also require an overt act toward furthering the agreement. An overt act is a statutory requirement, not a constitutional one. See Whitfield v. United States, 453 U.S. 209 (2005). The illegal act is the conspiracy's "target offense."

Conspiracy generally carries a penalty on its own. In addition, conspiracies allow for derivative liability where conspirators can also be punished for the illegal acts carried out by other members, even if they were not directly involved. Thus, where one or more members of the conspiracy committed illegal acts to further the conspiracy's goals, all members of the conspiracy may be held accountable for those acts.

Where no one has actually committed a criminal act, the punishment varies. Some conspiracy statutes assign the same punishment for conspiracy as for the target offense. Others impose lesser penalties.

Conspiracy applies to both civil and criminal offenses. For example, you may conspire to commit murder, or conspire to commit fraud.


One overt act in this case is the Russian hacking of Podesta and DNC emails. Notice the part about "derivative liability" where each conspirator is responsible for the actions of all other conspirators.

Also note that Russiagate: The Depth of Collusion describes the extensiveness of contacts between the Trump campaign and Russia representatives:

quote:
It is now known that Trump campaign officials had extensive contacts with Kremlin-linked figures during the campaign. There were constant and continuous interactions: There were at least 18 calls and messages and at least 10 meetings between Trump campaign associates and Kremlin-linked figures just during the campaign.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1929 by PaulK, posted 02-20-2018 1:48 PM PaulK has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 1932 by PaulK, posted 02-20-2018 2:26 PM Percy has responded

    
PaulK
Member
Posts: 14343
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 1.6


Message 1932 of 2494 (828526)
02-20-2018 2:26 PM
Reply to: Message 1931 by Percy
02-20-2018 2:15 PM


Re: Collusion by the Trump Campaign Proven Six Months Ago?
But was there an agreement to commit an illegal act ? The Russians committed illegal acts but you seem to be short on evidence that the Trump campaign agreed to any of them.

This is not to say that there was no agreement, only that the evidence so far made public doesn’t show that.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1931 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 2:15 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 1933 by frako, posted 02-20-2018 3:20 PM PaulK has not yet responded
 Message 1935 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 5:38 PM PaulK has responded

    
frako
Member
Posts: 2792
From: slovenija
Joined: 09-04-2010
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 1933 of 2494 (828527)
02-20-2018 3:20 PM
Reply to: Message 1932 by PaulK
02-20-2018 2:26 PM


Re: Collusion by the Trump Campaign Proven Six Months Ago?
But was there an agreement to commit an illegal act ?

If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, its probably not an imp in disguise.

Its mostly improbable you will get a a video confession of them agreeing to commit illegal acts. But given the inteligence trump is showing its possible

Appart from so many of his close circle being charged, the slip ups of his children on tape, the constant lying

If they where perfectly honest they would have reported being approached by foreign agents who wanted to collude with them to the FBI. If trump was not in the Russians pocket he would have enacted those sanctions already. He would not fire 3 lead investigators investigating him....

There is enough circumstantial evidence for me to believe beyond reasonable doubt he is guilty as they come.

Edited by frako, : No reason given.


Christianity, One woman's lie about an affair that got seriously out of hand

What are the Christians gonna do to me ..... Forgive me, good luck with that.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1932 by PaulK, posted 02-20-2018 2:26 PM PaulK has not yet responded

    
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 1934 of 2494 (828529)
02-20-2018 3:35 PM
Reply to: Message 1928 by Percy
02-20-2018 1:03 PM


Re: Collusion by the Trump Campaign Proven Six Months Ago?
Yes, this is collusion. Mueller already has enough information to wrap this all up in the language of conspiracy

Actually, absent a bit more, this looks like a plot[1] to collude because apparently there was no actual dirt or a furthering of a plot to get dirt, at least that is according to what we've been told about that meeting.

Apparently, though, some pretty substantial Russian interests were discussed at the meeting. This was certainly the opportunity for some line crossing if the attendees had any actual way to get the administration to do what the Russians asked. Right now we don't know if an actual plan or agreement was made at that meeting. What we can say is that no patriotic American had any business being in that room unless they were wearing a wire for the FBI. On the other hand, it appears that there were some very patriotic Russians in the room.

[1] deliberately using some other word that conspiracy, because there is enough confusion caused by the mixing of legal and colloquial usages of the word.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

We got a thousand points of light for the homeless man. We've got a kinder, gentler, machine gun hand. Neil Young, Rockin' in the Free World.

Worrying about the "browning of America" is not racism. -- Faith

I hate you all, you hate me -- Faith


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1928 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 1:03 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 1936 by Percy, posted 02-20-2018 6:06 PM NoNukes has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 17646
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 1935 of 2494 (828534)
02-20-2018 5:38 PM
Reply to: Message 1932 by PaulK
02-20-2018 2:26 PM


Re: Collusion by the Trump Campaign Proven Six Months Ago?
PaulK writes:

This is not to say that there was no agreement, only that the evidence so far made public doesn’t show that.

I guess we can differ on what constitutes an agreement and sufficient evidence, but boiled down this is what does it for me. From the emails between Goldstone and Donald Jr.:

Goldstone: "The Crown prosecutor of Russia...offered to provide the Trump campaign with some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary...and be very useful to your father."

Donald Jr.: "...I love it..."

And then they attended the meeting.

There are suspicious things not even in the Russiagate: The Depth of Collusion report. For example, one day after Hillary Clinton announced Tim Kane as her running mate on July 22, Wikileaks began dumping the DNC emails. One hour after the Access Hollywood tape became public on October 7, Wikileaks began dumping the Podesta emails. Russia was the source of all the email hacks - Wikileaks was only the vehicle.

--Percy

Edited by Percy, : Typo.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1932 by PaulK, posted 02-20-2018 2:26 PM PaulK has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 1938 by PaulK, posted 02-21-2018 12:56 AM Percy has responded

    
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