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Comey Needs To Clear The Air

[ Posted Monday, March 6th, 2017 – 17:57 PST ]

It's never a dull moment in Donald Trump's White House, and this weekend was certainly no exception. Trump began the weekend early Saturday morning by tweeting out what seemed to be a conspiracy theory. This did precisely what it was intended to do, which was to divert attention from the growing questions about Russian influence in both the Trump campaign and in his administration. Trump was reportedly furious during a Friday meeting that Jeff Sessions had recused himself from the investigation, because to Trump any backing down from any previously-held position is a sign of weakness and not to be tolerated. As dawn broke on Saturday, Trump decided to distract the media by tossing another Twitter hand grenade into the political conversation, and as a result Sessions quickly dropped from the news.

Trump's accusations were breathtaking -- all the more so since he didn't offer the tiniest shred of evidence to back them up. According to Trump, President Barack Obama personally approved wiretapping Trump Tower at the height of the election season. He originally alluded to McCarthy, but then later was apparently counseled that the appropriate political parallel to use was Watergate. Which is more appropriate, since Richard Nixon did all sorts of nefarious things of this nature against his political opponents (see: "enemies list" if you don't remember the term).

Whatever historical analogy you prefer, if Trump was right it would be an abuse of power for Obama to personally order a wiretap on the opposition party's candidate for president in the midst of an election. This would be political misuse of the Justice Department of the highest order. Only problem is, there appears to be absolutely no evidence whatsoever to back up Trump's claim.

Thankfully, there is one man who can go a long way towards clearing the whole mess up, with one public statement. His name is James Comey, and he runs the Federal Bureau of Investigation. So far, however, he is refusing to do so. This is an abdication of responsibility, further degrading Comey's already-shaky public reputation. Millions of Americans lay at least part of the blame for Hillary Clinton's election loss at Comey's feet, and they've got a strong case to make in their belief. Comey interfered in politics in a fashion unseen in Washington since the death of J. Edgar Hoover, tipping the scales by speaking about an investigation into Hillary Clinton while remaining completely mum about an investigation into Russian ties to the Trump campaign. If he had publicly spoken of both investigations, he might have had a leg to stand on in making the case he was holding himself above politics. Since he didn't, that case cannot be made.

James Comey now needs to make a public statement about the veracity of Trump's tweeted accusation. He needs to either say: "There is no evidence to back this claim up," or "It's more complicated that that, and here are the reasons why," or "Trump is right, and here's what he was referring to." The old dodge of "we do not comment on ongoing investigations" is no longer acceptable, at this point. Comey's got to address this controversy in some fashion, and clear the muddied waters.

To date, Comey seems to want to have it both ways. The timeline on the controversy so far started with Trump's early-morning tweets. Then, later in the day, the story broke that Comey had "directed senior F.B.I. staff to refute the allegations with a statement to the public." The next morning, James Clapper -- former Director of National Intelligence under Obama -- appeared on Meet The Press and flatly denied that Obama had ordered any such wiretap, and that, furthermore, there were no wiretaps approved for Trump or the Trump campaign. Period. Since that point, the White House is pushing back against both Comey and Clapper, insisting that Trump doesn't believe any of the denials.

This is where Comey is trying to have it both ways. Although the media picked it up and ran with it, Comey has not actually publicly addressed the controversy one way or another. A leak said that he directed senior staff to address it, but then no public statement ever appeared from anyone at the F.B.I. -- not on Saturday, not on Sunday, and not today.

In the first place, Comey shouldn't be allowed to get away with punting this to some subordinate. He was the one to hold a press conference on Hillary Clinton's investigation, after all, so he should be the one who addresses one president's wild conspiracy claims against the previous president. Comey has worked for both men, so he should know exactly what went on before the election, after the election, and after Trump became president.

In the second place, there is assumably a list somewhere of every warrant the FISA court has ever issued (as well as the ones rejected). If, as some are now speculating, Trump just misunderstood the way that foreign intelligence is collected (presidents don't order such things, there is a process), but that Trump has at least something to base his accusations upon (if a Trump server was wiretapped, for instance), then Comey needs to clear that up as soon as possible. A quick review of all of the FISA court's actions over the past year would easily show whether there was anything to the accusation at all. It wouldn't take that long, I would think. Certainly not two or three days.

Trump drew a very clear picture with his tweets. President Obama had personally directed the wiretapping of the Trump campaign right before the election. He got turned down once at the FISA court, but then finally did get a warrant. James Clapper denied that the Trump campaign had been wiretapped at all, in unequivocal terms Sunday morning. Assumably, any such FISA warrant would have at least crossed his desk at some point, given the job he was doing at the time. Yet he denied it happened. Trump said it did.

This leaves James Comey as the only one left who could easily clear this up. Unlike Attorney General Jeff Sessions or any other senior Trump administration official, Comey did not change jobs in January. He has an uninterrupted view of what happened, in other words. If, as was reported, Comey is instructing his own senior staff to rebut the charge, then he likely already knows it is baseless and false. If the reporting is wrong and there is a basis for Trump's charge, Comey would know that, too. Either way, he should publicly say what he knows to be true. Hiding behind "we can't comment" is simply unacceptable at this point.

In fact, as more time goes on before Comey does address it, the more people are going to begin to wonder what sort of pressures he's facing from his two titular bosses -- Sessions and Trump. The White House is already publicly pushing back on the story that Comey has somehow broken with the president's line on the issue. The White House itself has urged that an investigation be opened into the matter. No matter where the facts lead, at this point Comey is pretty much the only one who can make any sort of believable statement on the matter in the entire executive branch. One leaked story that Comey instructed his aides to refute Trump's accusations is not enough. Comey needs to get out in front of the cameras and make a statement, and shine some sort of light on the situation. No matter what he's got to say about what happened, the public needs to hear from James Comey as soon as possible.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Cross-posted at The Huffington Post

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

119 Comments on “Comey Needs To Clear The Air”

  1. [1] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    What if it's Comey that's working with Putin and they tapped/hacked both Hillary and Trump ?

  2. [2] 
    Paula wrote:

    My understanding is that Trump Tower is home, and has been, to a slew of extremely unsavory characters, and over the years more than one has landed in jail. As David Waldman noted today on Kagro in the Morning podcast, if "law enforcement" has reason to believe crimes are being committed they can do wiretaps, and law enforcement includes a whole lot of different entities with different rules. Trump Tower has very likely been "wired" and may be right now and none of it is automatically aimed at Trump personally, although he's got so many nefarious things going on he certainly could be being being "tapped", and for things having nothing to do with the election. So the idea that the only legitimate surveillance involves a FISA warrant is incorrect.

    The idea that Obama was behind any of this is ludicrous and stupid, which fits 45's profile perfectly.

    And Sessions still lied and still has to recuse himself and almost 2/3 of Americans now believe there should be an Independent Prosecutor assigned to look into Trump's Russian ties (per CNN poll). I think that percentage is only going to go up.

  3. [3] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    So, let me get this straight ...

    Comey is abdicating his responsibility because he doesn't publically respond to and refute every GOD-DAMNED ASININE THING TRUMP SAYS!?

    Have I got that right? Because, if that's the case, y'all are in for a very, very long Trump administration, no matter how long it actually lasts.

    And, y'all have my sympathies because, things are far worse in your country than I could have ever imagined.

  4. [4] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    By the way, Comey has a great reputation, as far as I'm concerned. But, then, I'm a big Biden and Geithner fan still, too ...

  5. [5] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    General Kelly, on the other hand, is doing great and irreversible damage to his reputation ... if, in fact, he had a good one before he started defending Trump's asinine statements and implying that President Obama should be indicted.

  6. [6] 
    Kick wrote:

    EM [3]

    So, let me get this straight ...

    Comey is abdicating his responsibility because he doesn't publically respond to and refute every GOD-DAMNED ASININE THING TRUMP SAYS!?

    Whoa... EM!

    Two things:
    1. I totally and completely agree with EM.
    2. May I put that on my acceptable words list?

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2016/11/11/friday-talking-points-415-donald-trump-and-andrew-jackson/#comment-88355

    Have I got that right? Because, if that's the case, y'all are in for a very, very long Trump administration, no matter how long it actually lasts.

    And, y'all have my sympathies because, things are far worse in your country than I could have ever imagined.

    Yes, you have totally got that right. Welcome to our "new world." Doesn't it just make you want to hurl an expletive at times? :)

  7. [7] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    May I put that on my acceptable words list?

    Sure. Just so long as you don't apply it to me. :)

  8. [8] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Let me try to put it another way ...

    The Trump WH has no credibility. All analyses should use this as a logical starting point.

  9. [9] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Only problem is, there appears to be absolutely no evidence whatsoever to back up Trump's claim.

    This isn't a problem. It's par for the Trump course of events. Ignoring it is the best policy.

  10. [10] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Millions of Americans lay at least part of the blame for Hillary Clinton's election loss at Comey's feet, and they've got a strong case to
    make in their belief.

    Millions of Americans are wrong to believe this.

    Comey interfered in politics in a fashion unseen in Washington since the death of J. Edgar Hoover, tipping the scales by speaking about an investigation into Hillary Clinton while remaining completely mum about an investigation into Russian ties to the Trump campaign. If he had publicly spoken of both investigations, he might have had a leg to stand on in making the case he was holding himself above politics. Since he didn't, that case cannot be made.

    There is quite a lot of critical context left out of this use of false equivalence.

    The proof of what I say should be in your answer to this question: Would Comey have spoken about the Hillary investigation if Bill Clinton hadn't boarded a certain plane on the tarmac in Phoenix?

  11. [11] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    You now what? Just be happy that Trump is being investigated. With any luck, the petty president will determine that resignation is his best option.

  12. [12] 
    neilm wrote:

    The Obamacare replacement proposal is out. It is everything I expected - it shifts the power away from Americans and back into the hands of the insurance companies. This is not going to be good. Most Americans will see higher costs. Some will lose coverage altogether. More unlucky ones will face financial ruin if they or a family member gets caught in one of the industry's traps.

    Just remember, 2,200 Americans will die every year for every million Americans that lose their coverage because of 45 and the Republicans. But then it isn't about people, is it. It is all about the Republican Party's owners and their path to profit.

    Sick.

  13. [13] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    He originally alluded to McCarthy,

    Based on his level of intelligence, I just assumed he is referring to Melissa McCarthy's portrayal of Spicer anytime he brings up McCarthyism ! We know how much he loves that!

  14. [14] 
    neilm wrote:

    Sean Spicer's letter complaining to his student paper about a deliberate misspelling of his name is making the rounds again (the url itself tells all):

    https://www.rawstory.com/2017/02/sean-spicer-raged-against-first-amendment-after-college-newspaper-misspelled-his-name-as-sphincter/

  15. [15] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    On the subject of the travel ban, why would anyone want to travel, much less immigrate to the US under the Trump regime?

  16. [16] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Comment #15 is missing a comma ... Michale knows where it should be. :)

  17. [17] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    There is a better option for immigrants. Anyone want to guess where it is?

  18. [18] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    There are a couple of inaccuracies in the blog today, CW. The first is this widely held misconception:

    "tipping the scales by speaking about an investigation
    into Hillary Clinton"

    Comey wasn't the one who said the FBI had reopened an investigation into Clinton's emails. In fact, after his letter was leaked to the press (he didn't do that either) along with the deliberately misleading statement regarding reopening the investigation, Comey restated that the investigation into Clinton's emails was and would remain closed. The US media, however, largely chose to ignore that fact and run with the more exciting lie instead.

    The second is a partial inaccuracy coupled with an important omission. You stated that Comey

    "directed senior F.B.I. staff to refute the allegations
    with a statement to the public."

    Later reports amended this statement to:

    The F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, asked the Justice Department this weekend to publicly reject President Trump’s assertion that President Barack Obama ordered the tapping of Mr. Trump’s phones, senior American officials said on Sunday. Mr. Comey has argued that the highly charged claim is false and must be corrected, they said, but the department [this being the DoJ not the FBI] has not released any such statement.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/05/us/politics/trump-seeks-inquiry-into-allegations-that-obama-tapped-his-phones.html

    The omission is this: on this occasion Director Comey was following protocol by requesting that the DoJ make the public statement because it is their job, not the FBI's. Therefore it's the DoJ leadership who are shirking their responsibility, not Comey.

  19. [19] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    EM....

    Is a SIN involved? I have one and so do you...but mine starts with the dreaded 9.

  20. [20] 
    Kick wrote:

    neilm [14]

    Sean Spicer's letter complaining to his student paper about a deliberate misspelling of his name is making the rounds again (the url itself tells all)

    I just spent the last 10 minutes laughing so hard it made me cry. A public apology violated their professional standards. ROTLMAO :)

  21. [21] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    Obama is pretty crafty, and there is a secret passage out of the White House.
    Comey needs to make sure Obama didn't slip away to install a wiretap himself?

    Can't you picture Obama in his ninja gear scaling Trump Tower while muttering-
    "Warrants. We don't need no stinking warrants"?

    A

  22. [22] 
    michale wrote:

    Trump's accusations were breathtaking -- all the more so since he didn't offer the tiniest shred of evidence to back them up.

    Which sounds EXACTLY like the Democrats and their "SESSIONS LIED!!! SESSIONS COMMITTED PERJURY!!!" BS...

    Trump's accusations were breathtaking -- all the more so since he didn't offer the tiniest shred of evidence to back them up. According to Trump, President Barack Obama personally approved wiretapping Trump Tower at the height of the election season.

    And the facts clearly show that THAT is exactly what happened..

    Whatever historical analogy you prefer, if Trump was right it would be an abuse of power for Obama to personally order a wiretap on the opposition party's candidate for president in the midst of an election. This would be political misuse of the Justice Department of the highest order. Only problem is, there appears to be absolutely no evidence whatsoever to back up Trump's claim.

    Except, well yunno... FACTS...

    The next morning, James Clapper -- former Director of National Intelligence under Obama -- appeared on Meet The Press and flatly denied that Obama had ordered any such wiretap, and that, furthermore, there were no wiretaps approved for Trump or the Trump campaign. Period. Since that point, the White House is pushing back against both Comey and Clapper, insisting that Trump doesn't believe any of the denials.

    And James Clapper ALWAYS tells the truth, right??? :^/

    And it really doesn't matter if Obama personally ordered it or not.. A tap on a presidential candidate during the heat of a hard-fought campaign simply WOULD NOT have been done without White House approval...

    Obama knew and approved and is going down..

    It's that simple...

  23. [23] 
    michale wrote:

    Paula,

    And Sessions still lied

    Prove it.

    You can't.. There are NO FACTS to support your claim..

    It's THAT simple...

  24. [24] 
    michale wrote:

    Liz,

    Have I got that right? Because, if that's the case, y'all are in for a very, very long Trump administration, no matter how long it actually lasts.

    That's what I have been saying for months now..

    President Trump says JUMP!!! and the Left hysterically jumps...

    Everyone on the Left is being played by the President and you just HAVE to know he is laughing his ass off!! :D

    By the way, Comey has a great reputation, as far as I'm concerned. But, then, I'm a big Biden and Geithner fan still, too ...

    Yes he does.. And yes you are.. :D

    Millions of Americans are wrong to believe this.

    Yes, they are... :D

    General Kelly, on the other hand, is doing great and irreversible damage to his reputation ... if, in fact, he had a good one before he started defending Trump's asinine statements and implying that President Obama should be indicted.

    The facts are coming out and they are clear.. Obama SHOULD be indicted...

    The Trump WH has no credibility. All analyses should use this as a logical starting point.

    And yet ya'all are taking the word of James Clapper who is even LOWER on the credibility totem than Obama...

    There were at least 2, possibly 3 requests to the FISA court to wire-tap Candidate Trump..

    This is fact... How do you think all those leaks coming out of Trump Tower happened??

    It's IMPOSSIBLE that this would have been without the tacit approval of Obama..

    This is also fact...

    Democrats opening up this can of worms about the BS accusation that AG Sessions committed perjury is the BEST thing that could have happened to President Trump...

  25. [25] 
    michale wrote:

    Democrats opening up this can of worms about the BS accusation that AG Sessions committed perjury is the BEST thing that could have happened to President Trump...

    NO ONE is talking about Russia or AG Sessions..

    EVERYONE is talking about Obama being investigated and indicted.. It's already got a kewl nickname.

    OBAMAGATE

    The President is playing the Left and it's pet poodle, the MSM, like a fiddle!! :D

    :D Gods, is President Trump a GENIUS or what!!??? :D

  26. [26] 
    michale wrote:

    Mopshell,

    RE #18.... Well said....

    VERY well said...

  27. [27] 
    michale wrote:

    Just remember, 2,200 Americans will die every year for every million Americans that lose their coverage because of 45 and the Republicans.

    BUT!!! BUT!!! BUT!!!!

    You said that FORTY THOUSAND Americans will die every year!!!

    NOW it's only 2200!!???

    WOW!!!!

    President Trump has saved 37,800 American lives!!!!!

    WOW!!!!

    WHAT A PRESIDENT!!!!!!

    :D

    But then it isn't about people, is it. It is all about the Republican Party's owners and their path to profit.

    This, coming from the guy who totally supported TrainWreckCare, an Obama program that made Insurance and Drug companies rich beyond the wildest dreams of Avarice...

    Ooops... Yer hypocrisy is showing... :D

  28. [28] 
    michale wrote:

    Ooops... Yer hypocrisy is showing... :D

    I was going to say "your ideological slavery is showing" but I decided to be nice about it.. :D

  29. [29] 
    michale wrote:

    Liz,

    Would Comey have spoken about the Hillary investigation if Bill Clinton hadn't boarded a certain plane on the tarmac in Phoenix?

    I can assure you that events would have transpired completely different if Bubba hadn't compromised Lynch...

    It's entirely possible that if Bubba hadn't done what he did, NOT-45 would actually be 45....

    On the other hand, all of NOT-45's flaws may still have been enough to keep her from winning...

  30. [30] 
    michale wrote:

    I am predicting that Obama will announce that his daughter finishing school is, all of the sudden, not that important and that he is moving his family to a country that doesn't have an extradition treaty with the United States...

    hehehehehe :D

  31. [31] 
    michale wrote:

    Ya know, we can always ask James Rosen and Angela Merkel if Obama is capable of ordering illegal wire-taps???

    Hmmmmmmmmm??? :D

  32. [32] 
    michale wrote:

    Or we can ask James Clapper if the NSA was scooping up phone calls of American citizens... I am SUUUUREEE he would tell us the truth.. :D

    Funny how ya'all would be HYSTERICALLY indignant about such activities..

    But ONLY when it's people with '-R's after their names who do it...

    There IS a word for that, yunno.... :^/

  33. [33] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    It's entirely possible that if Bubba hadn't done what he did, NOT-45 would actually be 45....On the other hand, all of NOT-45's flaws may still have been enough to keep her from winning...

    Well, the campaign-sabotaging husband had a far more negative impact on her chances than Comey and the FBI, indubitably. But, the responsibility for her loss lies with the candidate herself and her extremely disappointing, sad excuse for a campaign.

  34. [34] 
    michale wrote:

    Well, the campaign-sabotaging husband had a far more negative impact on her chances than Comey and the FBI, indubitably.

    "Indeed"
    -Teal'c, STARGATE SG-1

    :D

    But, the responsibility for her loss lies with the candidate herself and her extremely disappointing, sad excuse for a campaign.

    x2

  35. [35] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Trump's allegation that he was bugged by Obama is just a classic example of Big Lie misinformation. In other words, a lie so audacious that no one would believe it to be a complete fabrication.

    A Big lie, with no evidence to back it up. A bluff.

    This is what fascists do.

    Comey may be following protocol, but he should give a press conference stating the official FBI position on the matter. Comey was not been shy about press conferences with regards to Clinton. Big Lies need to be punctured early in the game. In other words, Comey should formally call Trump's bluff. Protocol be damned.

  36. [36] 
    michale wrote:

    NOT-45 ran a tone deaf campaign whose SOLE and ENTIRE thrust was simple...

    "DONALD TRUMP IS SATAN AND IT'S MY TURN"

    That was it.. That was NOT-45's ENTIRE campaign...

    And many on the Left are shocked that she lost.. :^/

    It's mind-boggling...

  37. [37] 
    michale wrote:

    Trump's allegation that he was bugged by Obama is just a classic example of Big Lie misinformation. In other words, a lie so audacious that no one would believe it to be a complete fabrication.

    And, as the facts clearly show, it is NOT a fabrication...

    A Big lie, with no evidence to back it up. A bluff.

    The big lie is that there is no evidence to back it up...

    This is what fascists do.

    Yes, it is EXACTLY what fascists do.. So, since yer telling the big lie, I guess that makes you the fascist... :D

    "Simple logic"
    -Admiral James T Kirk

    Comey may be following protocol, but he should give a press conference stating the official FBI position on the matter.

    Why??? Because you say so?? :^/

    And people call ME arrogant... :D

    In other words, Comey should formally call Trump's bluff. Protocol be damned.

    hehehehehehe

    Ideological slave, thru and thru.... :D

  38. [38] 
    michale wrote:

    WikiLeaks just took a dump on the CIA!!

    Now all the Obama era malfeasance is going to come out!!!

    WOOT!!!!

    :D

  39. [39] 
    michale wrote:
  40. [40] 
    michale wrote:

    Wikileaks: CIA 'Stole' Russian Malware, Uses It to ‘Misdirect Attribution’ of Cyber Attacks
    "Russian" hacking? It could have just as easily been the CIA

    "AND THE TRUTH!!!! SHALL SET YOU FREE!!!!"
    -Jim Carrey, LIAR LIAR

    :D hehehehehehehe

    Oh, this is going to be a fun FUN week for me!!! :D

  41. [41] 
    altohone wrote:

    27

    2,200 for every million
    20 million

    Basic math.

    A

  42. [42] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Liz-
    I haven't seen whether or not you like the new name for VV, One Demand . As you (correctly) suggested a name change and were part of the process of obtaining the new name (our conversation about OD being about one thing right before I wrote to David Swanson about his "What is your one demand?" question in his recent article), I would like to hear your opinion.
    Does El Exigente approve ?
    (cue mariachi band)
    -Savarin commercial 1980's

    To all.
    Now that VV has a new name I will probably become even more annoying. Please accept my apologies in advance if it turns into an Over Dose.

  43. [43] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    As for my surrender on the VV name, at least it gives me a chance to use this quote I've been wanting to use for a long time.

    Neilm- please escort the children out of the room (OK, I know that joke is played out- I won't use it again.)

    "I know when I'm licked- all over."
    Frank Zappa
    One of his albums
    (maybe the white album with the pencil on the front)

  44. [44] 
    TheStig wrote:

    At this time, paranoia and/or deliberate disinformation are my leading hypotheses explaining Trump's bugging outburst. He claims he doesn't drink, and that claim holds up under scrutiny.

    Trump has unlimited access to classified material - if he knows what to ask for, or somebody gives him a hint. Trump can easily prove me and other doubters wrong. As President, he can call in heads of the FBI and other security branches to report what they know and when they knew about, alleged Obama eves dropping. Insist the security branches launch coordinated investigations and report back to him ASAP. Put that famed Trump temper to use!

    If anybody is in a position to do this, it's a POTUS. In point of fact, that would be part of his job. Trump can get to the bottom of this....assuming there is a bottom....and a "this." Yet, he makes no move other than to rant on Twitter. A bit strange, but Trump is a strange guy.

  45. [45] 
    altohone wrote:

    Paula

    The Democratic establishment types who disparage Bernie and his supporters while calling for unity in the same breath may not want to keep fighting the battle from the primaries (more than a little hypocritical after the DNC chair fight), but it seems it's here to stay.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/inside-the-dnc-unity-reform-commission_us_58b9818de4b05cf0f3ffd657?mx6xq4kl3zavvaemi&

    Of course, the alternative is losing even more voters, which remains a distinct possibility if they retain their dismissive attitude.

    When an annoying comedian like Jimmy Dore is getting 8 million hits per month (not counting his show on The Young Turks) it indicates the antipathy for the establishment is stronger than they want to acknowledge.

    Better than Trump won't win them over.

    A

  46. [46] 
    altohone wrote:

    Don

    Since the initials are used for overdose, it's tricky.

    And you don't want people to think you're promoting One Direction either.

    But One Demand is still better than VV.

    A

  47. [47] 
    altohone wrote:
  48. [48] 
    michale wrote:

    2,200 for every million
    20 million

    Basic math.

    Ahhhh

    So, the Republicans are going to kill 20 Million Americans..

    Yea.. That's MUCH MORE reasonable.. :^/

    Once again..

    Step back.. LISTEN to yerselves.. :D

  49. [49] 
    michale wrote:

    Now that VV has a new name I will probably become even more annoying. Please accept my apologies in advance if it turns into an Over Dose.

    Woot!!! :D

  50. [50] 
    michale wrote:

    A total of 8,761 documents have been published as part of ‘Year Zero’, the first in a series of leaks the whistleblower organization has dubbed ‘Vault 7.’ WikiLeaks said that ‘Year Zero’ revealed details of the CIA’s “global covert hacking program,” including “weaponized exploits” used against company products including “Apple's iPhone, Google's Android and Microsoft's Windows and even Samsung TVs, which are turned into covert microphones.”

    And the hysterical outcry from the Left Wingery:

    {{ccchhiiirrrrpppppp}} {{chiiiirrrrrpppppppppp}}

    Cricket city.....

  51. [51] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    The fact that overdose is one word and not two which I used for obvious reasons reminds me of a joke I heard on the way to work a few years ago.
    Jim Kerr was talking about a survey of the sexual habits of college freshman women (any surprise I would still remember this ?). He said that some had said often, others had some sometimes and that a surprisingly large percentage said infrequently.
    Then Shelley Sonstein asked if infrequently was one word or two.

  52. [52] 
    michale wrote:

    Baa daa da

    :D

  53. [53] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Altohone (46)-
    Yeah. My mom also brought up the One Direction thing.
    But I am hoping to get a subliminal boost whenever people use the On Demand feature on their TV.
    I also called it Our Demand by mistake when talking to the web design guy.

  54. [54] 
    michale wrote:

    But I am hoping to get a subliminal boost whenever people use the On Demand feature on their TV.

    Now THAT is an excellent tie-in....

  55. [55] 
    altohone wrote:

    48

    20 million is the number insured through Obamacare.
    2,200 per million will die without insurance according to the Journal.

    2,200 X 20 is the 44,000 to which neil was referring.

    He didn't change the number at all.

    Basic math that doesn't/shouldn't require a calculator shouldn't need to be explained either.

    A

  56. [56] 
    altohone wrote:

    Don
    53

    And if it doesn't work out, you can start a boy band.

    A

  57. [57] 
    michale wrote:

    And if it doesn't work out, you can start a boy band.

    Ok, no offense, Don...

    But THAT was funny as hell.. :D

  58. [58] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    So let me break this down a bit:

    1. The 45 administration is leaking like a rusty bucket, and 45's advisors have told him that, hey, it's definitely not them or their staffs, and well boss, maybe they've got the Tower wiretapped.

    2. 45 goes to Mara Lago and ruminates. Saturday morning he spots an article on Breitbart that makes a case for wiretapping, and angrily tweets a repeat of Levin's charge, setting off a firestorm.

    That's narrative one, the one everyone is running with. Narrative two runs like this:

    1. 45 thinks, 'these Russia investigations are getting awfully close. Maybe I'm being wiretapped.'
    Bannon agrees, but knows the intelligence folks won't just give up that information to a potential target. How to shake that info loose? He makes a plan and calls Mark Levin, who uses that call as his 'deep source' for the Breitbart article.

    2. 45's tweet has its intended effect: everyone except the actual wiretapper denies it. On background, WH source (Bannon) tells the press that 45 was responding to the Levin article.

    3. Mission accomplished: the press ferrets out the source of the wiretap, or proves conclusively that there wasn't one. Either result is a win.

  59. [59] 
    michale wrote:

    So let me break this down a bit:

    And when ALL is said and done....

    The Democrats STILL haven't ANY facts that show AG Session lied or committed perjury, and the Left has been played like a fiddle by President Trump.....

    :D

    Ain't it a beautiful day!!! :D

  60. [60] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Altohone (46)-
    I like to think I can sing, but I don't like to dance. And I think the rest of the boys could add all their ages together and it would still be less then me.

  61. [61] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Michale (51,52)-
    You can have sole possession of "the filter" and being deprived. (comments 39,46 Style vs. Substance)
    After all, depravity is clearly all mine. :D

  62. [62] 
    michale wrote:

    I like to think I can sing,

    Me too... But I am honest enough to point out that, what I lack in talent, I make up for in volume... :D

    And I am plenty loud... :D

  63. [63] 
    Paula wrote:

    [45] altohone: Another man of Indian Extraction was shot yesterday and a friend of mine from India wrote that he's now afraid. He is afraid for his life, living in fucking Ohio. I don't want to hear about Berniebros' grudges -- we've passed the sell-by date. If Berniebros have to be "won over" then to hell with their whiny little selves. It's not our/my job to convince you of anything -- its your job to use your intelligence and judgement and come to your decisions, then live with them.

    Even Susan Sarandon has come out and said its time to move on. But if you want to keep whining and find other whiners to natter on about Bernie, whine away.

    Or you can get your asses out there and do something productive. But bitching is fun and takes no effort, so listen to Jimmy Dore (who's getting lots of web traffic!) and tell yourself how much more righteous you are than the people actually protesting and doing the resistance work.

    Blackmail is slimy -- constantly threatening to go to the dark side because Democrats haven't sufficiently crawled on their knees to you is bullshit. If you and your pals want to embrace Trump just to make Democrats sorry, well, I guess you will. Just do it -- join Michale while telling yourself he's a loon and you aren't.

    If you're not part of the solution you're part of the problem and if thats the role you want to play -- spoiler -- play it. Just quit pretending its anything else and quit demanding Dems try to coax you into anything. Examine your conscience then do what you want and if you want to keep Bannon in power I will never forgive you, and so what? That's life ain't it? You don't get to have it both ways.

    We all die eventually. I intend to go down fighting for the survival of my country (and the safety of my friends/family/fellow citizens) and don't intend to have regrets. My soul is in my hands, yours is in yours. This is one of those times in history where the lines are stark and getting starker. However messy, imperfect or unsatisfactory it is, there's only two sides now. Choose.

  64. [64] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    The Democrats STILL haven't ANY facts that show AG Session lied or committed perjury, and the Left has been played like a fiddle by President Trump.

    Perhaps. Trump is an excellent fiddler, and will no doubt continue fiddling even as Rome burns (to use an old metaphor).

    Session's sin was of omission, rather than flat-out lying. He failed to tell the whole truth, as they say. He has his former colleagues to answer to for that, and there's no wrath like that of a Senator who knows he's been played for a chump.

  65. [65] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Paula [63] You go girl! Two thumbs up.

  66. [66] 
    michale wrote:

    Session's sin was of omission, rather than flat-out lying.

    But that is NOT what ya'all said before...

    Even THAT equivocation is total BS...

    AG Sessions answered the question that Franken asked fully and completely. PERIOD..

    He failed to tell the whole truth, as they say.

    That's like saying Sessions didn't tell the "WHOLE TRUTH" because he left out that he likes his steaks rare...

    AG Sessions told the WHOLE truth to the question that was asked...

    PERIOD...

    He has his former colleagues to answer to for that, and there's no wrath like that of a Senator who knows he's been played for a chump.

    Except if they are played for a chump by NOT-45... :D

    Ya'all are so transparent...

  67. [67] 
    michale wrote:

    Well, at least we have a consensus here in Weigantia..

    AG Sessions DID NOT LIE...

    AG Sessions DID NOT COMMIT PERJURY....

    The Democrats have been proven to be the incompetent fools that I always thought they were...

    "So say we all"
    -Battlestar Galactica

    :D

  68. [68] 
    John M wrote:

    neilm wrote:

    "The Obamacare replacement proposal is out. It is everything I expected - it shifts the power away from Americans and back into the hands of the insurance companies. This is not going to be good. Most Americans will see higher costs. Some will lose coverage altogether. More unlucky ones will face financial ruin if they or a family member gets caught in one of the industry's traps."

    Yes indeed. We can now start calling the Republican proposal "planewreck care"! Since it doesn't do anything that Trump promised it would do during his campaign. It is not better, it doesn't cover the same amount of people or more people, etc. Even conservative Republicans are calling it Obamacare lite! How many other campaign promises is Trump not going to keep???

  69. [69] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Paula (63)-
    I agree that I don't want to hear Bernie Bros grudges about the primaries anymore. You are right that has passed it sell-by date.
    But the battle for the soul of the Democratic Party is not over. And I hope you are not lumping all Bernie supporters in with the Bernie Bros.
    Some Bernie supporters were part of the Democratic Party before he was. Others, like me only joined the party to vote for Bernie in the primary and have no loyalty to the party to violate.
    The Democrats that support Bernie have every right to work to make small contribution campaigns or any other issues they feel are important part of the party platform. Other Bernie supporters have every right to demand that if the Democratic party wants their votes it has to meet their standards.
    Just as you work to get the party to support the issues that you want the party to support.
    You should take your own advice, stop bitching about the Bernie Bros and listen to and try to work with the other Bernie supporters on common issues.
    There are many of us that are not bitching and are getting our asses out there trying to fight for the issues we believe in.
    And you are still blaming Bernie supporters for Trump & Co. That has also passed the sell-by date (though Hillary sold out a long time ago).
    Crap.
    OK. I do have to acknowledge that it is really hard to stop. :D

  70. [70] 
    neilm wrote:

    Paula [63] - you nailed it lady!

    I really like Altohone and have learned a lot from our interactions, so I hope it was clear that my rant was directed at Jimmy Dore.

  71. [71] 
    michale wrote:

    Wikileaks Unveils 'Vault 7': "The Largest Ever Publication Of Confidential CIA Documents"; Another Snowden Emerges
    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-03-07/wikileaks-hold-press-conference-vault-7-release-8am-eastern

    Now we're going to find out about all the illegal crap yer guy Obama did... :D

    Ya'all are going to have to pick a side... It will either be Obama....

    Or your principles and integrity....

    It's gonna be fun to watch.. :D

  72. [72] 
    neilm wrote:

    The Democratic Party has two options - tolerate discussion within the Party or split in two. Altohone's third party article shows how difficult it is to break the two party system, so in reality there is only one choice.

    This is the time to get involved. I changed my Independent status to Democratic, and I've offered to stuff envelopes, stand for any position that is compatible with my work hours, donated to key programs and stopped being neutral and/or quiet in political discussions. I intend to shape the Democratic Party to the policies that I think the country needs and support the next leader that has charisma and is on or near my message.

    I'm encouraged by the number of people I work with or know that feel the same was as I do about 45 and are actively engaged.

  73. [73] 
    neilm wrote:

    Another profound revelation is that the CIA can engage in "false flag" cyberattacks which portray Russia as the assailant.

    Bwahahahaha - I'm going to need to see a lot of evidence that this latest "leak" is really from the CIA and not a bunch of crap to allow 45 to claim Russia are pure as driven snow.

  74. [74] 
    neilm wrote:

    Ya'all are going to have to pick a side...

    Yeah, reality or Alex-Jones's-tin-foil-hat-land.

  75. [75] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Balty,

    Here is what Sen. Franken asked Sessions:

    Franken: CNN just published a story alleging that the intelligence community provided documents to the president-elect last week that included information that quote,

    ‘Russian operatives claimed to have compromising personal and financial information about Mr. Trump.’

    These documents also allegedly say quote,

    ‘There was a continuing exchange of information during the campaign between Trump's surrogates and intermediaries for the Russian government.’

    Now, again, I'm telling you this as it's coming out, so you know. But if it's true, it's obviously extremely serious and if there is any evidence that anyone affiliated with the Trump campaign communicated with the Russian government in the course of this campaign, what will you do?


    Sessions: I'm not aware of any of those activities. I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians, and I'm unable to comment on it.

    Sessions lied, plain and simple.

    He acknowledges his involvement in Trump's campaign, and then stated that he "did not have communications with the Russians"!

    His claim now that he didn't mention his meetings with the Russians because it occurred in his role as a Senator is pathetic as he was the one who pointed out how he was "affiliated" with Trump's campaign!

  76. [76] 
    neilm wrote:

    I just read more about the CIA leaks - wow!

    They can make your smart phone make rude noises so people think you passed wind. They can make your smart TV dumb! They can program your hotdog to choke you! The have their own NFL division that can make the Falcons lose! They can infiltrate your children to make them not call you even when you leave them voicemails complaining they never call you!

    That goodness for Kim Dotcom and the utterly reliable people who feed Assange otherwise we might think it is a pile of garbage until we see some real evidence.

  77. [77] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Paula- More on* (63)-
    You are also right there are two sides and it's time to choose one.
    You can choose the side of the Big Money Republicans and Big Money Democrats or you can choose the side of small contributions candidates.
    Which One will you Demand ?

    * just to be clear that's two words- I'm trying to be nice. :D

  78. [78] 
    neilm wrote:

    Sessions lied, plain and simple.

    I think Sessions at first made a mistake - he really did mean he didn't talk to the Russians about fixing the election for 45 - but then he lied by omission.

    Watch it on video - and make sure you see the next few seconds when Sessions remembered he did in fact talk to the Russian ambassador, and decides to let his mistake stand - that is the point where he lied - it is written all over his face.

  79. [79] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Don (77)-
    Subliminal messaging is addictive.

  80. [80] 
    Paula wrote:

    [69] Don: I was responding specifically to altohone.

    You should take your own advice, stop bitching about the Bernie Bros and listen to and try to work with the other Bernie supporters on common issues.

    I am working with groups that include constructive Bernie supporters (versus Berniebros) who would like to keep the country from burning down. The obstructors (Berniebros) aren't coming to the meetings. They are not my problem, I don't have to reach out to them, I don't have to give absolution. I have also NOT wasted time here replaying the election (however tempting) -- I don't have time for that.

    Other Bernie supporters have every right to demand that if the Democratic party wants their votes it has to meet their standards.

    Bullshit. Bernie supporters can come to party/group meetings and make their cases (and many are). They can present their ideas and explain how they work and maybe they'll be adopted and maybe they won't. And if they don't get what they want -- this minute! -- and they just can't stand it they can do whatever they want, up to and including whining like 7-year-olds -- we can't stop them. They can become Republican. They can join or start whatever third party they want. They can drop out. Its up to them. But we also can do what WE want. And if we want to call their bluff, we can. And I am.

    The battle for the soul of the Democratic Party is ongoing. This is a spectacular opportunity for Berniebros to DO something rather than snipe from the sidelines. They can get active in the Party and help shape it. It's happening all over the country. If they can't stomach the party, fine. They can come up with other ways to help defend America from the Trump/Bannon menace and I'll be happy to hear about what they're doing. But sitting around bitching about the DNC and Hillary and blah, blah, blah while Dems, weak and imperfect as they are, are actually manning the barricades -- not interested.

    These are not normal times and the stakes are way bigger than any time in my lifetime or yours. Old arguments (in addition to being a gigantic bore) are irrelevant.

    Berniebros want to blame Democrats for the consequences of Berniebro obstruction. They are, in effect, saying "I wouldn't hit you if you didn't make me angry". Screw that. I'm unwilling to be held hostage by Berniebros -- it's that simple.

  81. [81] 
    Paula wrote:

    Balthasar: [65], neilm [70]: Thanks!

  82. [82] 
    Paula wrote:

    [72] neilm: This is the time to get involved. I changed my Independent status to Democratic, and I've offered to stuff envelopes, stand for any position that is compatible with my work hours, donated to key programs and stopped being neutral and/or quiet in political discussions. I intend to shape the Democratic Party to the policies that I think the country needs and support the next leader that has charisma and is on or near my message.

    Yes! Precisely! Get involved! Bring your ideas to the table and champion them! Make the party better and stronger from the inside, rather than weakening it from the outside, (and then blaming it for being weak).

    [77] Don: I reject your formulation.

    I agree big money is a serious, serious problem in our politics. I don't think third parties will solve that problem. But active involvement by millions of intelligent, concerned citizens around the country offers a counter-weight to big money, while helping to actually save the country, right here, right now. Not in the abstract, or the future. Now.

  83. [83] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Paula-
    "These are not normal times and the stakes are way bigger than any time in my lifetime or yours."
    Sorry. But that IS the old argument that now is no time to stand up to the Big Money influences in the Democratic Party.
    "I reject your formulation."
    That's the problem.
    Voting for Big Money Democrats does NOT help the country. It never has, not now, not ever.
    The future starts NOW.
    Demanding small contribution candidates NOW could be effective at reducing the Big Money some in 2018 and more in 2020.
    Please explain how voting for Big Money Democrats in 2018 will accomplish that goal, that affects every other issue that the Big Money Democrats pretend to support.
    It is the Big Money Democrats that are holding you hostage (Stockholm Syndrome ?).
    And while I can't speak for any other Non-Bernie Bros Bernie supporters- I am definitely NOT bluffing.
    And it is you that are whining like a 7 year old because others refuse to be blackmailed into supporting the Big Money Democrats like you think they should. I thought you were better than that.
    And why shouldn't people be able to demand small contribution candidates or action on other issues right now ?
    After all, forty years of the failure of voting for Big Money Democrats culminating in the election of Trump seems to me to be exhibiting quite enough patience on the subject.

  84. [84] 
    TheStig wrote:

    I just got through my first reading of "Active Measures, What Lay Behind Russias Interference in the 2016 Election and What Lies Ahead" by Osnos, Remnick and Yuffa in the March 6th edition of The New-Yorker. Not sure if "What Lies Ahead" is an intentional pun.

    It's 15 page article, very long by current New-Yorker standards....but I really recommend brewing up some coffee, finding a comfy chair, and getting on with it. Their are 6 cartoon way points where you can rest before pushing on to the next section.

    Subtitles give a good indication of all the ground covered:

    Soft Targets

    Cold War 2.0

    Putin's World

    Hybrid War

    Turbulence Theory

    Bonus Feature: A very ominous graphic riffing off of the Sci-Fi film Independence Day

    If you don't subscribe, borrow a copy.

    There is a companion pod cast on the NYer Website that's worth a listen.

  85. [85] 
    Paula wrote:

    [83] Don:
    And why shouldn't people be able to demand small contribution candidates or action on other issues right now ?

    You can demand to your heart's content. You can scream and drum your heals on the floor. You can write blogposts making your demands. And you have, and what's it gotten you?

    Anyone can demand anything, anywhere, but nowhere is there a guarantee that others must respond to those demands. Funnily enough, people often don't.

    The work isn't here -- it's in the groups where people make their needs known to the people actually empowered to respond to those needs. For too long people have sat around typing demands, but that's not where the action is.

    I'm not a "big-money Democrat" -- I'm a patriot who's distracted right now by the fact that we have a criminal lunatic as President and a fully corrupt GOP party supporting him and his despicable associates, and the elected Democrats, however imperfect, are the primary firewall. They can be supported by citizens, or not. At this point in time, I will support them. We can get back to squabbling about details after the fire is put out. Taking Big Money out of politics is a worthy goal and there are a variety of groups working on it -- join one! But, simultaneously, recognize there will be no politics to take big money out of if Trump/Bannon turn this country into the corrupt tyranny they are flirting with. Conditions now are dangerous unlike anything we've seen in the last 40 years and if you don't get that there's nothing left to say.

    The power has always been at the grassroots -- we've all said it for years. But it took a political earthquake to make that reality clear and meaningful and as a result, many citizens have been activated. That's where influence starts. That's where the opportunities are. It doesn't matter that the label is "Democrat" -- the tools are there, people are receptive and energized. Show up and make your pitch and respond accordingly.

    OTOH:

    And while I can't speak for any other Non-Bernie Bros Bernie supporters- I am definitely NOT bluffing.

    Then Adios! Go! Go, goooooooo! See ya! Take your friends! I am giving you the "out" so that you don't have to feel blackmailed anymore. I refuse to feel blackmailed -- you refuse to feel blackmailed. Hurray! Agreement!

    You are 100% free to go if you feel thwarted. You may expend your time and energy however you choose. We will just have to muddle along without you.

  86. [86] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Paula-
    I realize we are all contradictions at times, but please try to make up your mind.
    It's Okay to show up and make my pitch but then I have to sit down, shut up and do what I'm told.
    You may not consider yourself a Big Money Democrat but you support and defend them.
    And if you are defending the Big Money Democrats then you are not resisting all the right people.
    Resisting Trump and the Republicans without resisting the Big Money Democrats is not only a proven exercise in futility- it is being part of the problem, not part of the solution which you are also against.
    While I may not convince you in the error of your ways, hopefully I will convince enough others so that the soul of the Democratic Party or at least our democracy can be saved from the Big Money interests. So I will not go away- no matter how tempting your schoolyard taunt may be.
    I will not leave the rest of the commenters at your mercy. But feel free to keep trying to pull the wool over their eyes.
    Of course, you are always welcome to join in should you ever want to help work toward improvement instead of defending the status quo.

  87. [87] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Paula-
    "And the elected Democrats are the firewall."
    I will concede this point.
    The Democrats that are elected now are the firewall against Trump for the next two years.
    But the Democrats that we elect or whoever we elect in 2018 will be an even better firewall from 2018 to 2020 if they are not Big Money candidates/legislators.
    Electing Big Money Democrats in 2018 will not send any message to the Big Money interests except a surrender to business as usual which will not be effective resistance.
    Electing even a few small contribution candidates (10-50) in 2018 in BOTH CMPs with a possible third party or independent would send the message that the party is over and would scare the shit out of the Big Money interests.
    The political earthquake has activated citizens, I am trying to steer them in the right direction before the status quo lulls them back to sleep.
    As for this is the most dangerous time bullshit -
    I reject your formulation. You can say it all you want, but it hasn't been true for as long as it has been used as an excuse which is a very long time.
    Of course you would have nothing left to say because acknowledging that there is no substance to your oft repeated false claim would destroy the fantasy world that allows you to feel that you are fighting the good fight.
    You can't fight the good fight if you are fighting on the wrong side.

  88. [88] 
    Paula wrote:

    [86] Don:

    It's Okay to show up and make my pitch but then I have to sit down, shut up and do what I'm told.

    You can say whatever you want. You just can't insist that I agree, or that people in official positions in the Democratic Party genuflect to you because you have listed your "demands".

    I said if you want to get stuff done you should work in a real, physical way with the party versus making demands on the web. If you disagree, fine. Your spinning your wheels is not my problem.

    You have threatened to leave the party (if you're even in it) if you don't get your way. I reply: if you don't get your way and that's how you feel, leave.

    That's really it.

    Beyond that, I will write what I want here, you can write what you want and if the twain never meets, it never meets. It is not necessary to me that you agree with me. You are entirely free to persuade anyone here, or anywhere, who finds you persuasive.

  89. [89] 
    altohone wrote:

    Paula... and Don, Balthy, neil...
    63

    In case you missed it and aren't just stubbornly clinging to the offensive term for whatever reason-

    https://theintercept.com/2016/01/31/the-bernie-bros-narrative-a-cheap-false-campaign-tactic-masquerading-as-journalism-and-social-activism/

    You are making yourself look foolish.
    If you truly want constructive engagement, read the article above and stop the destructive behavior.

    In the meantime...

    "If Berniebros have to be "won over" then to hell with their whiny little selves"

    Winning over enough voters to win elections is the name of the game. It absolutely IS the job of politicians to build a coalition. And their and your foolish attacks are hurting the Democratic party.

    You seem not to have read the article I linked to earlier about the unity commission in the DNC, or you wouldn't be misrepresenting reality.
    "Moving on" isn't about bowing down to the Big Money corruption you claim to be concerned about while simultaneously defending the failed status quo they've corrupted.

    The activism to reform the party from within continues. And it includes activism to fix the undemocratic gaming of the primaries where Democrats violated their own rules to favor one candidate over another.

    That's not re-fighting the primaries, it's fighting to make sure it doesn't happen AGAIN.

    People were fired because of it, so don't pretend it didn't happen, and don't pretend there is agreement to set the issue aside until after Trump is defeated.
    Because there isn't.

    And the same goes for the Fight For $15, single payer healthcare, Big Money corruption, affordable education, higher taxes on the rich, clean energy, ending the insane perpetual warfare, and on and on.
    Don't pretend there is agreement to support a Democratic party that pays lip service to those issues while perpetuating the status quo. And don't pretend there is agreement to set that aside until Trump is defeated.
    Because there isn't.

    There is a split in the Democratic party.
    Efforts are underway to seal the split, but it remains unresolved. To seal the split, compromise will be required, and your "my way or the highway" attitude doesn't come close.

    You can point to critics working for change within the Democratic party and call them whiny, self-righteous keyboard warriors while you furiously type your whiny, status quo defending misrepresentations... and while you self righteously pat yourself on the back for "doing the real work" despite having absolutely no clue what those people are doing when they aren't interacting here... but that makes YOU part of the problem, not them.

    Likewise, you can dismiss valid criticism of the Democratic party and pretend they are just minor imperfections that everybody should tolerate so that the people who lost to Trump, lost Congress, and lost state and local elections can maintain the failed policies which led to that massive smoking pile of rubble once known as the Democratic party.

    Or, you can get your head out of the sand and admit that embracing policies that will help Americans is what will motivate voters to help the Democrats regain power... and, yes, stop Trump too.

    A

  90. [90] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Paula-
    We certainly can both agree to disagree.
    I never insisted that you agree, or that the Big Money Democrats succumb to my demands if they don't want to.
    All I have done is point out inaccuracies in your statements.
    You work with the Democrats your way , I'll work mine. I am not a Democrat and have said if the Democrats want my vote they must meet my criteria, yet you keep acting as if this is an unreasonable demand.
    I do work in a real physical way as well a comment here. It does count if what someone does is something other than work to maintain the status quo by working within the Democratic Party to aid and abet the enemy by supporting the Big Money Democrats.
    And I am trying to work with all citizens to influence all parties and candidates on an issue that 80% agree on, getting the Big Money out of politics, which will help unify citizens and maybe help them find common ground on other issues instead of more of the same status quo divisive partisanship.
    I have faith in the intelligence of the people that comment here or read the comments and the American people in general.
    I believe that eventually (hopefully sooner rather than later) some will see that I have corroborating evidence on my side and you have only definitive evidence.
    Corroborating evidence:
    The Tea Party proved taking on establishment candidates in the primaries can work. Bernie proved that small contribution campaigns can raise competitive money. The Women's March and other internet actions have proved that anything can happen in a very short amount of time. There's even a quote that drives home this point that you might want to consider:
    "The power has always been at the grassroots-"
    " That's where the influence starts. That's where the opportunities are."
    - Paula comment 85
    The participants in One Demand will send their contributions directly to the small contribution candidates, not funneled through One Demand. Name one other organization that even comes close to being as grassroots as that.
    These three proven approaches can work even better together.
    Of course, there can only be corroborating evidence in support of this choice forward. It hasn't been tried so there can't be definitive evidence either way.
    I believe people will see that there is enough corroborating evidence to give this choice a try once they realize the futility and the definitive evidence leaves them with little or no other viable choice.
    Definitive evidence:
    Forty years of voting for Big Money Democrats has resulted in the problems we have now, including President Trump. It hasn't worked yet.

    So citizens can take a chance that they can make things better or they can keep doing what they have been doing and expect the different result that the Big Money Democrats that they elect in 2018, 2020 and 2022 will be willing and able to resist Trump.
    I am asking citizens to make a demand and back it up with their vote. If the Big Money Democrats feel threatened in 2018 they are more likely to put up a real fight than if they get re-elected running as the same old status quo Big Money Democrats. And we can make them feel threatened now by letting them know now that they will not get our votes in 2018 if they take Big Money which will also make them fight harder now.

  91. [91] 
    Kick wrote:

    TS [84]

    I just got through my first reading of "Active Measures, What Lay Behind Russias Interference in the 2016 Election and What Lies Ahead" by Osnos, Remnick and Yuffa in the March 6th edition of The New-Yorker. Not sure if "What Lies Ahead" is an intentional pun.

    A very good article TS, thank you. It's quite a history lesson too. I too am going to read it again.

    Below is a link to those interested in reading it:

    http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/03/06/trump-putin-and-the-new-cold-war

    Here is an excerpt from the article I can actually corroborate from personal experience (bold):

    ********************
    The Obama Administration, in its final days, had retaliated against Russian hacking by expelling thirty-five Russian officials and closing two diplomatic compounds. The Kremlin promised “reciprocal” punishment, and American intelligence took the first steps in sending new officials to Moscow to replace whoever would be expelled. “People were already on planes,” a U.S. intelligence official said. But on December 30th Putin said that he would not retaliate. To understand the abrupt reversal, American intelligence scrutinized communications involving Sergey Kislyak, Russia’s Ambassador to the U.S., and discovered that Flynn had had conversations with him, which touched on the future of economic sanctions. (Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, met with Kislyak in Trump Tower during the transition; the aim, according to the White House, was to establish “a more open line of communication in the future.”) Flynn was forced to resign when news broke that he had lied to Vice-President Mike Pence about these exchanges.
    ********************

    I know someone headed there who was bragging about all the frequent flyer miles. Then that happened.

  92. [92] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Altohone-
    Ok. I was commenting on the comments but did just read the article.
    I am not really sure why you included me as I was not really complaining about the Bernie Bros. However the term was created or whatever it means there some Bernie supporters that were assholes, there's some in every group. I was just acknowledging that, trying to distance myself and other Bernie supporters from them and see if Paula would acknowledge that not all Bernie supporters were Bernie Bros. She did. Credit where credit bis due.
    But I'm not sure that she thinks that I am not a Bernie Bros.
    As for the rest I think that's pretty much what I've been saying so I guess that wasn't meant for me. If it was, then sorry I didn't get it.
    It would be nice to be able to be completely civil, but when you criticize or expose people's dogma as faulty it often seems like and is reacted to as an attack, even if or when it wasn't meant to be.

  93. [93] 
    altohone wrote:

    neil
    70

    No worries on your rant.
    I hope my response made some sense to you.

    I'm thinking that maybe I should have started you off with a different Jimmy Dore segment.
    I warned everybody that he is annoying, but he has grown on me.
    He did a segment where he dissects an interview with Susan Sarandon and Josh Fox by Chris Hayes on MSNBC.
    It's supposed to be about DAPL, the pipeline protest, and probably would have gone down easier.
    I'm not expecting you to check it out, but just in case-

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cFk_Bda9Avw

    It's a live show in front of an audience and he has some co-hosts... part 2 is in the studio.

    -
    -

    72

    Actually, the article about 3rd parties ended by detailing exactly how it is now possible, thanks to Citizens United ironically, for a 3rd party to circumvent the organizational and legal obstructions the two party duopoly has put in place to maintain their power.

    It also laid out how it can be accomplished without risking the "spoiler" pitfall, thus eliminating the "There are only two choices. Choose." crowds argument.

    That said, I applaud your efforts and engagement and hope you are able to influence a huge number of people with your wisdom and effect positive change.

    -
    -

    73, 76

    The WikiLeaks CIA dump isn't actually a partisan issue.
    What was revealed should concern everybody... even though our resident trumpling is having a little trumper tantrum about them because he thinks it somehow proves something.

    I don't understand why you are adding fictional bits and downplaying the capabilities they have.
    I find the idea that our phones and TV's can be turned against us disturbing.
    I mean, it is Trump's CIA now, so this power is at his disposal. That doesn't concern you?

    -
    -

    78

    I agree with Listen.
    Sessions didn't lie by omission.
    What he said was a lie.

    A

  94. [94] 
    Paula wrote:

    [89] A: And the same goes for the Fight For $15, single payer healthcare, Big Money corruption, affordable education, higher taxes on the rich, clean energy, ending the insane perpetual warfare, and on and on.
    Don't pretend there is agreement to support a Democratic party that pays lip service to those issues while perpetuating the status quo.

    The Hillary campaign reached out to Bernie and his supporters, had them closely involved in creation of the platform, adopted most of their demands, then were spat upon by the group of Berniebros who couldn't be satisfied. She didn't go FAR enough. She wasn't "sincere" -- she was simply responding to pressure and therefore couldn't be trusted. Only those who agreed PREVIOUSLY and 100% were sincere and could be trusted.

    Which puts people in something of a box, doesn't it?

    And makes Democrats wonder if you're arguing in good faith. Coz you seem more concerned about retroactive thought-policing than getting your desires enacted.

    I'm all for Democrats embracing policies that will help all Americans -- just like Hillary did. I supported the Bernie platform with the caveat that there needed to be plans for how to enact the fucking platform. It's all very well to say "I want Single Payer" -- which I do in principle -- but you have to explain how you're going to transition to changing 1/7th of our economy from for-profit to non-profit, with all of the ramifications thereof. No one has a plan for that as of yet -- including Bernie.

    I have leveled plenty of criticisms at the party over the years, but last year they were finally getting it. That's what so infuriating. Hillary's platform was a huge move to the left after years of flowing rightward. She and her team had listened and learned and were in tune with the sufferings of people around the country and tried hard, and sincerely, to come up with solutions. Would they have resolved all problems? No. But thats because we don't have answers yet to questions that are unfolding, like "what DO we do about automation and job loss?" At least Dems were starting to seriously ask those questions, unlike Trump/GOP. You may think Bernie DID have answers, but he didn't really. He had policy prescriptions but he did not get down into the weeds, the underlying cultural/societal values and beliefs that Americans hold. The RANGE of beliefs. The reasons why lots of people resist things that seem so self-evident.

    But whatever. Doesn't matter now.

    You have policies you want enacted? Go for it. Bitching about all the things you don't like about Democrats doesn't count. If you're actually DOING something, by all means share! I'd love to hear about it. Look at what Neilm is doing! I myself am in a couple of groups in addition to the party - am building a website for one of them, have been attending meetings for several and participated in resistance events and activities, with more on the way.

    And I most definitely and absolutely resent people who went out of their way to make it harder for HRC to be elected. You think the country is in trouble because of Trump? So do I. We can agree on that and move forward. I'm not going to forgive people who didn't vote for HRC and it may be you won't forgive people who did -- or did so willingly instead of grudgingly. So there's really no value in re-litigating the election because we will not convince one-another.

    Am I saying "my way or the highway" as you assert? No. I am totally up for compromise, constructive interactions with the goals of true problem solving, and any other efforts intended to move the party and country forward. I am quite happily working with people who supported Bernie but voted for Hillary, and none of us spend our time together talking about either. It's all about what to do NOW.

    But I've had it with threats.

    Play because you think its worth doing or quit because you can't tolerate us and do something else. Either is fine with me. Play or quit.

  95. [95] 
    altohone wrote:

    Don
    92

    The term BernieBros was created as a tactic to use against what you are fighting for, using misogynistic comments from Republicans posing as Bernie supporters to tarnish real Bernie supporters. It was a lie.

    I included you, because you should not be using the term.
    Ever.
    Even in an attempt to find common ground with those who bought into the false narrative, because that perpetuates the false narrative.

    And, no, the rest of the comment was not directed at you.

    A

  96. [96] 
    altohone wrote:

    Paula
    94

    If historical revisionism is the way you want to go, so be it.

    You are wrong to use the term BernieBros, you are wrong about the platform adopting most of Bernie's ideas, you are wrong to think that Hillary's policies would have reflected the platform as she made clear in the general election, you are wrong about Bernie not having details in his policy proposals, you are wrong that "bitching" about the Democratic party policies to game the election doesn't count as valid and necessary activism, and you are wrong that Bernie's policies aren't in line with the societal/cultural beliefs of Americans.

    You can keep pointing the finger at everybody else, but Hillary is responsible for Hillary losing.
    And I'm not going to forgive the people who insisted it is pragmatic to run a candidate who could and did lose to Trump.

    And my options aren't limited to playing your game or quitting.

    A

  97. [97] 
    Paula wrote:

    A: I don't have a game (it was a metaphor). I am merely stating my opinion: I consider the constant threats by Berniebros to be blackmail. You are free to make them indefinitely of course and I am free to move on and spend my time more fruitfully. Nor can I stop you from thought-policing or insisting you can read Hillary Clinton's mind and can tell me what she really believed.

    I made no claims regarding her loss. (Nor did I ever claim Hillary was the "pragmatic" choice -- I LIKED HER.) I said I resent those who made her potential win more difficult. I do and I probably will until I'm either dead or enough time has passed for the wound to heal. That doesn't mean I can't or won't work with Bernie-supporters but Berniebros can pound sand. They are two different sets of people to me, you see.

    Since I disagree with your entire list of "you are wrongs" I think there's not much room here for useful discussion. You can do whatever you want to do and so can I, including thinking a number of thoughts you wouldn't like at all!

    Cheerio!

  98. [98] 
    michale wrote:

    Listen,

    Sessions lied, plain and simple.

    How is that a lie??

    Franken asked Sessions if he had had any contact with Russians in the context of the Trump campaign and Sessions said NO, he didn't..

    How exactly is that a lie??

    Do you have ANY facts to support the claim that AG Sessions DID have contact with Russians in the context of Trump's campaign??

    No, you do not..

    So, whomsoever continues to say that AG Sessions is lying, THEY are the ones that are lying..

    It's already been conceded by ANYONE with more than 2 brain cells to rub together (see, Balthy?? I CAN say nice things about you!! :D) that AG Sessions DID NOT lie, DID NOT commit perjury and told the whole truth to the question Franken asked..

    Let me lay out reality for you...

    There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with a sitting Senator meeting with Russian officials.. Democrats have met with PLENTY of them and lied about it afterwards...

    The ONLY questions that Dem Senators had for AG Sessions regarding meeting with Russian officials was in the context of AG Sessions alleged surrogacy as a Trump representative... In THAT context, AG Sessions answered the Dims questions completely and honestly...

    THAT is the reality...

    Democrats royally screwed the pooch with this hysterical accusation, but they DID accomplish their mission. The got their attack dog MSM talking about Sessions and Russians instead of talking about President Trump's AWESOME speech before Congress...

    But then President Trump turned around and DECIMATED the Dims at their own game and now even the Leftist MSM is talking about Obama doing the perp walk!! :D

    ESPECIALLY in light of the WikiLeaks revelations on how Obama's CIA was spying on Americans and subverting technology to accomplish this domestic spying...

    Obama is going to go down in history as even MORE corrupt than Richard Nixon... :D

  99. [99] 
    michale wrote:

    I don't understand why you are adding fictional bits and downplaying the capabilities they have.

    Because it is an attack on the messiah and the Left cannot abide by that...

    I find the idea that our phones and TV's can be turned against us disturbing.

    Personally I don't find it disturbing at all... I think it's AWESOME...

    What's disturbing is the utter HYPOCRISY of those in the Left Wingery who DON'T find it disturbing... And the REASON why those who don't find it disturbing don't find it disturbing is even MORE disturbing...

    I mean, it is Trump's CIA now, so this power is at his disposal. That doesn't concern you?

    Yes, logically and rationally it SHOULD concern Neil and everyone else here..

    But, with notable exceptions, everyone here is enslaved by their loyalty to Obama....

    So, they CAN'T say anything against Obama or their tongues (fingers??) will surely turn to fire...

    1000 Quatloos to whomever can name the reference without any online assistance.. :D

  100. [100] 
    michale wrote:

    What's disturbing is the utter HYPOCRISY of those in the Left Wingery who DON'T find it disturbing... And the REASON why those who don't find it disturbing don't find it disturbing is even MORE disturbing...

    Lemme know if you need that translated.. :D

  101. [101] 
    michale wrote:

    Ya'all are going to have to pick a side...

    Yeah, reality or Alex-Jones's-tin-foil-hat-land.

    Says the guy who routinely quotes WaPoop and other sources that have had to print HUNDREDS of retractions because of their bullshit stories...

    Has WikiLeaks EVER had to post a retraction?? NEVER

    Has WikiLeaks EVER been proven to post false information?? NEVER

    Scoff all you want.. But you just HAVE to know that Obama is pissing his pants with what WikiLeaks have and will release in regards to Obama's domestic spying operation...

    You are going to have to pick a side..

    It's either Obama or your integrity and principles..

    You can't be on the side of both because, based on your claim of what your principles are, Obama has violated them six ways from Sunday...

    Are you free and independent thinking Democrat??

    Or are you just a Party drone enslaved by Obama Dogma??

    You will have to choose or events may choose for you...

    As Althohone pointed out, these CIA domestic spying tools and programs are now at President Trump's beck and call..

    Doesn't that bother you at all???

  102. [102] 
    michale wrote:

    Hay.. Left Whinery...???

    Ivanka Trump clothing line reports record sales

    Ivanka Trump’s eponymous women’s fashion line is reporting record sales figures despite calls for a boycott and controversies surrounding President Trump.
    http://thehill.com/blogs/in-the-know/in-the-know/322818-ivanka-trump-clothing-line-reports-record-sales

    Howz that Ivanka Boycott going for ya'all??

    :D hehehehehehehehehe

  103. [103] 
    michale wrote:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/07/world/europe/wikileaks-cia-hacking.html?_r=0

    Have ya'all noticed that "Russian Hacking Of US Election" has virtually disappeared from the Leftist MSM airwaves and Democrat talking points?? :D

    Apparently, the cat is out of the bag that it was Obama's CIA all along, trying to paint Candidate Trump as a Russian operative in attempts to hand the election to NOT-45.. :D

    How BAD of a candidate does one have to be to have THAT kind of backing and yet STILL lose the election!!?? :D

    "Oh Johnny, Johnny... Did you back the wrong horse..."
    -Peter Venkmen, GHOSTBUSTERS II

    :D

  104. [104] 
    michale wrote:

    http://nymag.com/thecut/2017/03/what-camille-paglia-understands-about-the-trump-era.html

    Excellent interview with Camille Paglia :D

    If the Left Whinery had more like her, then Democrats would rule this country for a thousand years...

    Unfortunately for ya'all, NOT-45 is the quintessential Democrat...

  105. [105] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    altohone-
    The term we shall not mention may have been started by non-Bernie supporters, but trust me there were actual ones too. See the Revolt Against Plutocracy Democracy site, for example.
    When I suggested to them in 2015 that it needed to about Congress and not just Bernie I was attacked, castigated and then banned from commenting on the site.
    When I wrote to Kevin Zeese from Popular Resistance about making it about Congress and not just Bernie he attacked me with rants about how I wouldn't get him to support Hillary. He was so wrapped up in his zealotry that he could not see that was not what I was saying to him.
    But I will try not to use the term anymore.

  106. [106] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Apparently, the cat is out of the bag that it was Obama's CIA all along, trying to paint Candidate Trump as a Russian operative in attempts to hand the election to NOT-45..

    There's a term for this: ?????????????, transliterated as dezinformatsiya, or disinformation. Not surprisingly, the Russians invented it. It's one of their favorite go-to plays.

    Think for just a moment: there are Republicans in the CIA. If this comes as a surprise, have a cup of coffee and think real hard about it. Think "Bay of Pigs", for instance. For Obama to use the CIA in this manner, he'd have to convince an awful lot of GOP folks within the agency to go along, and as Trump is discovering, this is not a group that responds well to bullying.

  107. [107] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Altohone-
    Too bad we didn't come up with a term like Hillary Hoes because she was pimping her supporters to be exploited by the Big Money interests. Too late now.
    And for those offended by Hillary Hoes, it could have been Clinton (fill in offensive alliterative word here). :D

  108. [108] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Don [107] Living down to misogynistic expectation? Not what a good bro would do.

  109. [109] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Balthy-
    Absolutely.
    Sometimes I have different interpretation of what is good than other people. Sometimes I even violate other people's definition of good on purpose just for fun.
    As I've said before, one of my many faults is the inability to resist a joke.
    Jokes are not always nice. Sometimes the fact that they are not nice is what makes them funny to some people. Of course, to some other people that makes the joke not funny.
    To those that think it is not funny, don't laugh and understand that it is just a joke that you do not find funny.
    Of course, that explanation wasn't really for you. After all, I got a chuckle from your comment and I assume that's how it was intended.
    If not, then I apologize for laughing at you. :D

  110. [110] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Heh.

  111. [111] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I'm still thinking about the new name, Don ... I'll get back to you on that.

    Nothing is etched in stone, right?

  112. [112] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Paula-
    With the explanation in comment 109 in mind I would like to apologize to if anything intended as joke or anything else said was taken as an insult or if I did actually insult you.
    I do respect your commitment, efforts and your belief in Hillary and the Democratic Party even though I do not share them.
    I should be more understanding that it is difficult for you and many others to deal with many of the changes that have happened and are happening.
    Hopefully, you will be more understanding of those of us that have been waiting a long time for these changes and respect our commitment, efforts and belief in the alternatives.

  113. [113] 
    altohone wrote:

    Don
    105

    Assholes who stridently refused to surrender their values or be distracted in their chosen efforts before the fight was over is not how the term was defined or used.

    A

  114. [114] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Since when do we have to start walking on eggshells around here? Sheesh.

  115. [115] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Liz-
    "Nothing's etched in stone, right? "
    Uh-oh.

  116. [116] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Don't worry ... I'll be gentle.

  117. [117] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Altohone-
    Yeah. It was used to discredit or marginalize all Bernie supporters or at least the ones that didn't want to support Hillary as assholes by lumping them in with the real assholes and the pretend assholes.

  118. [118] 
    Paula wrote:

    [112] Don: No problemos!

  119. [119] 
    michale wrote:

    There's a term for this: ?????????????, transliterated as dezinformatsiya, or disinformation. Not surprisingly, the Russians invented it. It's one of their favorite go-to plays.

    And, of course, you have NO PROOF, NO FACTUAL EVIDENCE that proves your claim...

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