Donald Trump

BuzzFeed's Dossier Was Both Flimsy and Newsworthy

Real news about fake news

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Is there a good defense of BuzzFeed's decision to publish the Urinegate memos last night? Glenn Greenwald's analysis of the story makes the best argument I've seen, though there are so many caveats here that I don't think it quite qualifies as a defense:

It's almost impossible to imagine a scenario where it's justifiable for a news outlet to publish a totally anonymous, unverified, unvetted document filled with scurrilous and inflammatory allegations about which its own editor-in-chief says there "is serious reason to doubt the allegations," on the ground that they want to leave it to the public to decide whether to believe it.

But even if one believes there is no such case where that is justified, yesterday's circumstances presented the most compelling scenario possible for doing this. Once CNN strongly hinted at these allegations, it left it to the public imagination to conjure up the dirt Russia allegedly had to blackmail and control Trump. By publishing these accusations, BuzzFeed ended that speculation. More importantly, it allowed everyone to see how dubious this document is, one the CIA and CNN had elevated into some sort of grave national security threat.

Whether or not that's a defense, the basic argument here is true: Once I read what BuzzFeed had, I saw CNN's story in a rather different light.

Now, that still leaves plenty of room to criticize BuzzFeed, which noted some errors in the dossier at the outset but could have done much more to report out its claims before publishing it. (To give the most obvious example, they should have asked Michael Cohen for comment on whether he had been to Prague at the time the file said he was there, rather than letting us wait til after the piece dropped to see Cohen deny he'd ever been to the city at all. BuzzFeed later updated its story to note his denial.) But even if BuzzFeed could have done a much better job of setting the context for the document it was printing, its report in turn supplied some valuable context for CNN's story. Beyond that, if this dossier, or a summary of it, has shaped the ways influential people in Washington have been behaving, the document itself is clearly newsworthy.

On the other hand, I can't co-sign this part of Greenwald's column:

There is a real danger here that this maneuver can harshly backfire, to the great benefit of Trump and to the great detriment of those who want to oppose him. If any of the significant claims in this "dossier" turn out to be provably false—such as Cohen's trip to Prague—many people will conclude, with Trump's encouragement, that large media outlets (CNN and BuzzFeed) and anti-Trump factions inside the government (CIA) are deploying "Fake News" to destroy him. In the eyes of many people, that will forever discredit—render impotent—future journalistic exposés that are based on actual, corroborated wrongdoing.

Don't get me wrong: Trump's fans will certainly do this. But if this dossier didn't exist, they'd just point to something else. There's already enough kooky stuff out there for Trump's defenders to handwave about "fake news" whenever something legitimate comes out. This is, in fact, a pretty standard political maneuver. (Think of how many allegations against Barack Obama, credible or not, provoked a chorus of liberals making Benghazi jokes. And the standard Benghazi theories were a lot less far-out than the stuff in the BuzzFeed dossier.)

In any event, a ton of Trump exposés have appeared since he entered the presidential race in mid-2015, some of them convincing and some of them not. It should be clear by now that many Trump loyalists are already perfectly capable of finding reasons to reject even the most well-sourced stories. To judge from some of the tweeters I saw taking the dossier's claims at face value last night, some people are perfectly capable of embracing even the most poorly-sourced allegations as well. It can be remarkably easy to believe the things you already want to believe.

Bonus audio: Nick Gillespie recently interviewed Greenwald for the Reason podcast:

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    1. Thank you for your informative comment.

      1. It really applies to almost every post above the REAL COMMENTS here.

        1. BuzzFeed’s deceitful conductr should be criminalized. What Americans really need is authority and entertainment, and the incoming (indeed, perhaps the first) leader of this great nation provides an unpresidented abundance of both. Suggesting that outfits like BuzzFeed should be allowed to smear such an extraordinary figure is like suggesting that New York prosecutors foolishly pivot from jailing an insidious criminal Troll and “parodist” merely because of the “First Amendment dissent” of a single, isolated judge. As everyone knows, “neither good faith nor truth is a defense,” according to the Manhattan criminal court judge herself who was selected by the prosecutors to oversee that case, so clearly we need to silence all such subversives at once, including the lying editors of BuzzFeed. See the documentation at:

          http://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpress.com/

      2. Joe the Plumber was unavailable for comment.

    2. Trump’s press conference was pretty funny.

      1. He was a lot nicer than I would have been too. I would have had Acosta removed, and told that if he acted that way again, next time around he would be banned from the press pool for the remainder of the term.

  1. If any of the significant claims in this “dossier” turn out to be provably false?such as Cohen’s trip to Prague?many people will conclude, with Trump’s encouragement, that large media outlets (CNN and BuzzFeed) and anti-Trump factions inside the government (CIA) are deploying “Fake News” to destroy him.

    Shouldn’t they conclude that? I mean, if the dossier is provably false, doesn’t that mean that somebody went to the effort of deploying fake news to destroy him?

    In the eyes of many people, that will forever discredit?render impotent?future journalistic expos?s that are based on actual, corroborated wrongdoing.

    That’s the way credibility works, and why you shouldn’t fuck around with it. Do we really criticize people who discount statements from proven liars?

    1. Do we really criticize people who discount statements from proven liars?

      Idk. What is their political party affiliation?

    2. I, for one, still take Glenn Greenwald with a grain of salt because of his long ago sock-puppeting of his own posts. I’ve been moving to a more trusting stance with him in particular, but in general, credibility should be difficult to establish and easy to lose.

      1. I like his Trump-era stuff a lot, I think he’s stepped up. He’s really pissed off the left and he’s not backing down. It’s fun to see him shred leftist journalists on Twitter right now too

      2. Agreed. Greenwald is not one to engage in lectures on credibility.

      3. Best take everyone with a grain of salt. If what they’re saying works, it works. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t. Doesn’t matter who’s talking.

    3. “Shouldn’t they conclude that? I mean, if the dossier is provably false, doesn’t that mean that somebody went to the effort of deploying fake news to destroy him?”

      And why shouldn’t HE assume so regardless of the dossier? The press has already done everything it can to destroy him, shy of outright liable.

  2. Already knew MSM was fakenews

    Leftists Lie

    1. It’s Nazi Germany all over again.

      1. You know who else…hey, wait just a minute?!

        1. Donald John Trump tweeted this, for those of you who did not know:

          Donald J. Trump ?@realDonaldTrump 7h7 hours ago

          Intelligence agencies should never have allowed this fake news to “leak” into the public. One last shot at me.Are we living in Nazi Germany?

          The President Godwinned a nation!

          1. so great.

          2. “They call me a Nazi and Nazis are bad for some reason so I’ll call them Nazis that that will shut them up!”

          3. This clip is particularly funny. I can’t stop watching it.

            Trump calls CNN fake news and refuses to take their questions.

            1. I listened to some of it in my car, and yes that part was hilarious. Also, when they yelling-asking to explain the Nazi Germany Tweet. It’s crazy.

      2. To be clear, the US national security infrastructure deliberately spreading propaganda to undermine a newly elected President that it deems hostile to its interests is… not Nazi Germany, but not a sign of a healthy republic.

  3. To judge from some of the tweeters I saw taking the dossier’s claims at face value last night, some people are perfectly capable of embracing even the most poorly-sourced allegations as well.

    “Russia is in control of the US government” said one comment made on the internet.

    That’s enough to get an article written these days right? Or does it have to be a bonafide tweet?

    1. The reaction from the left is every bit as insane and idiotic as the “Obummer’s a secret Muslim” people in 2008.

      1. The difference is, the secret Muslim nutters were always very much a fringe.

        If the people frantically pushing every obviously bogus Trump story were very much a fringe, then we could draw an equvalency. They are not a fringe – they are wealthy, powerful people with access to all kinds of previously credible media distribution channels. As noted, they are destroying that credibility, but when those channels have been highjacked by fringe nutters, why is that a bad thing, again?

        1. Obama was provably a “kill whitey” Christian.

          1. How may white people has he killed.

        2. You are right. All this election has shown is that WaPo, the NYT, CNN, HuffPo, and NBC are not that different from Breitbart.

          1. Other than HuffPo, the one that you’ve listed are different from Breitbart, in a bad way. No one that reads Breitbart or HuffPo will question which political team that they stand for, so both are generally more honest than NYT, CNN, or WaPo in my book.

        3. By fringe do you mean small % or not influential? Large chunks of the population bought into secret Muslim and birther theories. I’d have to research whether any nationally prominent right-wing media figures explicitly endorsed these theories, covered them while neither explicitly endorsing or refuting them, etc.

          1. One them even went on to become President.

            1. And the original birther was the first loser in the same election.

              Was Mrs. Clinton also the one to make a big deal of McCain being born in the Panama Canal Zone?

      2. At least they had video of Obama referring to his Muslim faith. I mean, that puts it into the realm of “stupid”, not “insane”.

  4. But the real question is for Reason Mag, will they or will they not publish my story about how Trump turned me into a Newt!!!!!!

    1. But, you got better!

  5. what well sourced stories? I voted against Hillary but this TDS by the left is getting way out of hand and is really starting to hurt them and that does no favors for the democracy they claim to protect form Trump. Whats not noted here is that the idiot McCain also had his hand in this story at some point. its really disgusting and it should have never made the news on any level. I’m not referring to the sexual act as disgusting, thats a matter of opinion, but reporting the story is disgusting and tells us all we need to know about the charachter of those who hate Trump and will do anything to hurt him. I think its worse than the birthers

    1. I guess the pussy grabbing is a well sourced story. I stand by the rest of my statement though

      1. The fact that he said is well sourced, if he did it is another question. It seems the women who accused him are not pushing the issue now the election is over

        1. Fraudster Michelle Fields didn’t push her civil case either.

  6. This is the kind of shit that can turn a man into a nihilist.

    1. Naw, it’s not worth it to go full nihil.

      1. “Say what you will about the tenets of National Socialism, at least it’s an ethos.”

    2. Nihilists? I mean, say what you want about the tenants of National Socialism, Dude, at least it’s an ethos.

      1. ‘…the tenants of Nationalism Socialism’? They found their abode in things called ‘concentration camps’. You might just possibly mean tenets…

  7. I just want to know what happened to the scary clown epidemic. How did all of these scary clowns just suddenly disappear into thin air? The Russians? Space aliens? Bigfoot?

    1. Is it possible that clowns still exist but Americans just stopped being cowards about it?

      Naahhhhhhh.

      1. They put regular-person makeup on top of their clownface!

    2. Trump won the election. Therefore the clown epidemic metastasized and now the killer clowns are indistinguishable from ordinary citizens.

      1. Nazi Killer Clowns.

        They are worse than Juggalos!

      2. ins’t Trump now the head killer clown? see clowns didn’t go away they just changed the name

        1. see clowns didn’t go away they just changed the name

          …to Schumer.

    3. How did all of these scary clowns just suddenly disappear into thin air?

      We are hibernating. It’s cold out in the woods.

      1. Dammit!

        *Tears up thesis establishing clown-related incidents and ice cream.*

    4. I saw a prog post that claimed Hillary had stopped the scary clowns. I don’t remember how, maybe with the flaming sword of her righteous wrath during her walks in the woods, but you can thank Hillary!

  8. More importantly, it allowed everyone to see how dubious this document is, one the CIA and CNN had elevated into some sort of grave national security threat.

    I have to ask, have we ever had a situation where the U.S. intelligence community is actively trying to destabilize a U.S. president?

    1. Well, they’ve never been so blatant and obvious about it. This shit is almost comical if not for the third world banana republic implications.

    2. some believe they lied to Bush II and lets not forget what some think they did to Kennedy
      I for one would like to limit the CIA to just spying and nothing more or eliminate them all together.

      1. I have no hope that it will actually happen, but I’d absolutely love it if Trump came down hard on CIA when he’s actually in power. Ideally, ending the entire agency and replacing it with something that will at least be moderately accountable.

        1. Or just using his executive privilege to declassify their fuckups.

        2. At this point I’d welcome death squads.

        3. Moderately accountable? How about moderately competent?

      2. what some think they did to Kennedy?

        Even Politico can write headlines to encourage that kind of thinking.

        1. One of my clients told me if Trump gets elected the CIA or FBI will do what they did to Kennedy. He also believes in Cham trails, I don’t know about big foot though i’ll have to ask

  9. Can you explain why Robby Soave published the video of a mentally handicapped crime victim being tortured and humiliated? Can you explain why Robby Soave repeatedly posted the bound and gagged victim’s photograph?

    https://reason.com/blog/2017/01…..hows-black

    https://reason.com/blog/2017/01…..onsible-fo

    I find anti-Trump, partisan hackery at BuzzFeed easier to defend than disregarding the feelings of a mentally handicapped crime victim–and potentially contributing to the victim’s public humiliation.

    1. Why did Soave write an article that said that Trump openly admitted to sexual assault? Why did he praise a man who bombs children as a role model? Because he’s an embarrassment to his profession, but he’s fortunate that others are more embarrassing.

      1. Why did Soave write an article that said that Trump openly admitted to sexual assault?

        I’d fire my law firm if they didn’t have an absolute shit fit over that article. Soave may have actually committed defamation even under the Sullivan standard. “Sexual assault” actually has a defined legal meaning (unlike “sexual predator”). Falsely accusing someone of committing a felony is defamation per se, as well. Falsely claiming that someone has confessed to a felony is a dead easy win, under any defamation standard.

        If Trump were nearly as hostile to the 1A, and nearly as quick to sue, as Reason would like us to believe, Reason would be in court right now desperately trying to settle.

        1. If Trump were nearly as hostile to the 1A, and nearly as quick to sue, as Reason would like us to believe, Reason would be in court right now desperately trying to settle.

          You generally settle out of court.

          /pedant

          1. “In court” – you’ve been sued.

            “Desperately trying to settle” – almost never happens until you’ve been sued.

            /king pedant

            1. Your sentence structure puts the lie to that interpretation.

              1. If they had been sued, they would be in court. They would also be desperately trying to settle. Not seeing your point.

                /god-emperor pedant.

                1. If you’re in court, you’re at a hearing or trial. Merely having papers filed on you is not ‘in court’.

                  And your pedant meter is labelled backwards.

                  1. As I noted, “in court” is shorthand for “being sued”. Its a pretty common usage, actually. When you are actually in a courtroom, people in the biz are usually specific about why – motion hearing, trial, whatever.

                    /supreme being pedant

                    1. “in court” is shorthand for

                      You fail pedantry. A synecdoche is the antithesis of a pedantic statement.

                    2. I will admit, using the terms synecdoche and antithesis in the same sentence is some fine pedantry. Give yourself a pedantic promotion.

                      However, you are misattributing my pedantry to my initial post which contained the synecdoche, rather than to my response to your attempt to be pedantic. My usage of synecdoche was never pedantic, and your misattribution undercuts your pedantry. Sad!

                  2. UCS – um…wrong. There is a lot of stuff in court before you get to hearings or trials.

                    Preliminary scheduling of discovery, cases status meetings, settlement conferences, etc.

                    /lawyer not all that long ago.

                    1. One more, then I’ll stop. Maybe.

                      Me (to my Assistant GC): “Hey, are we in court on that blown heart valve yet?

                      Assistant GC: “No, they haven’t filed anything, just a demand letter.”

    2. Can you explain why Robby Soave published the video of a mentally handicapped crime victim being tortured and humiliated? Can you explain why Robby Soave repeatedly posted the bound and gagged victim’s photograph?
      I love how you keep harping on this.

      1. He’s got a bloody shirt–and dammit–he’s going to wave it.

        1. He’s running agin’ Reconstruction Era Democrats?!

          *ducks and runs from room*

      2. Somethings remain true . . . even after a week goes by.

    3. Ken, this concern trolling about his linking to the video is nearly as bad as (mike/DD’s?) moaning about ENB’s “outing” of eli lake.

      its a big nothing that only you seem to be outraged by. everyone linked to that video. linking to widely cited video isn’t a de-facto violation of some ethical standard.

      1. Objecting to someone potentially participating in the humiliation of crime victims isn’t nonsense.

        Reputable news organization actively seek to avoid that–because they have ethical and journalistic standards. Reputable journalists won’t do it for the same reason.

        If someone embedded a video of a rape in progress, I’d object to that, as well. Apparently BuzzFeed made everyone aware of that ‘mentally handicapped guy getting tortured’ video, too–just like they did with the details of PissGate.

        Ethics and journalistic standards are a real thing, and this thread is about precisely that. You don’t want to read about that, there are other threads. Maybe find one you like better.

        1. your objection is noted. its still silly.

        1. i don’t know what i’m supposed to be looking at there

          1. oh, right, “Wedding tackle”.

            and is ‘addiction myth’ the same as that person? I get confused about who our resident tards are.

            1. No, it has the same language and attack pattern as “Hail Retaxes” and a few other past griefers.

      2. Well, it actually is a violation of an ethical standard but as I’m sure you’ll note professional journalist ethics don’t really exist anymore.

        Of course, there is very little evidence that any have ever existed at all. Virtually the entire history of journalism is a long litany of propaganda and fake or misrepresented news. I should know, I’ve taken History of Journalism classes (not at Columbia, fortunately) and that’s 90% of the history of journalism.

        The other 9% are happy accidents where some lucky bastard got the scoop of a lifetime through sheer chance (Woodward & Bernstein). There is also that remaining 1% of investigative reporters who no one reads or people will read them and ignore what they say.

        I’m sure I’m not the only person who has noticed that journalism today is almost entirely driven by opinion articles. I mean, we’re reading one right now. Just because an article has sources, doesn’t mean it isn’t also an opinion piece.

  10. Don’t get me wrong: Trump’s fans will certainly do this.

    You seem to be ignoring the other people in the equation, that is, the non-Trump supporters who are looking at this and recognizing that yes, it is a case of “large media outlets (CNN and BuzzFeed) and anti-Trump factions inside the government (CIA) are deploying “Fake News” to destroy him.” Trump’s diehards are going to justify anything, but the middle America/moderates/independent voters/whatever you want to call them are seeing media actively lie to them in absolutely insane ways. This absolutely helps to further delegitimize American media.

    You want to combat ‘fake news’? Stop having major mainstream media companies mass-produce the stuff.

    1. And unequivocally call them on it when they do.

    2. They’re (the media) out of their minds. The bubble they’re in must be completely opaque because I know of no one who takes this crap seriously outside of dedicated leftists. Everyone else is standing back and saying “what the fuck?

      1. Hell, I’m in Canada, and I’ve actively had over a dozen people who used to watch CNN religiously for American news drop it and begin to bitch endlessly about how they’re promoting the most insane lies imaginable. People are not buying it, and the more they try to double down the more people are getting sick of it.

        1. I honestly don’t think they can back down now. So many reputations are going to be ruined that they’re going to beat this dead horse for as long as they can.

  11. The story that should have run on this isn’t “Looky here at this report on Trump’s pervy fetishes giving the Russians leverage over him”. It should have been “Holy crap, somebody is actually trying to discredit Trump by distributing obvious garbage like this. Here’s who those people are.”

    1. You’re assuming they have journalistic integrity and are not just trying to smear Trump with whatever they can lay their hands on, real or not.

      1. Yes, I know, you did say “Should”.

  12. Think of how many allegations against Barack Obama, credible or not, provoked a chorus of liberals making Benghazi jokes

    This is what bothers me about the MSM. They STILL run cover about how Hillary and Obama were caught red handed lying about how badly they fucked up that whole situation, to the point that our own ambassador was denied assistance for hours. No one ever held Obama accountable for a laundry list of lies and obfuscations continuing to his last days.

    The point has always been easy to see- If it wasn’t Obama- say it was Bush who flew half a billion in unmarked bills to Iran as the very same time Iran released four hostages, do you honestly think the media would just accept what the White House claimed that it wasn’t a ransom?

    Solyndra?

    Fast and Furious?

    I mean you can’t be surprised that Trump fans are cheering him on for calling out Buzzfeed as garbage when they basically looked the other way for the last eight years.

    1. Don’t be too mean to the lefty press. It’s not easy to ask the hard questions with a dick in your mouth.

    2. They still maintain that the “uprising” was due to that shitty YouTube video.

      I mean come on, a fucking fifth grader could tell you that story was bullshit.

    3. What are you talking about? Barry didn’t have a single scandal throughout his eight years in office. He said so himself!

      1. That’s what is so insane about all of this.

        During the Bush admin the press (sort of) did its job, asked questions, didn’t take the admins word for everything, pushed sources to verify, you know JOURNALISM.

        During the Barry years it was like-

        Press: Mister President! They say that the IRS targeted conservative groups to stop them from campaigning against you! Is this true?

        Admin: Nope.

        Press: Ok, good enough for us! Did we tell you how awesome that tie is yet today? Cause it’s awesome. Also you are like the coolest guy ever to have held office, did you know that?

        Admin: Here’s an exclusive interview for you where I will talk about how I’m the greatest.

        Press: Stop the presses we have an exclusive!

        1. “pushed sources to verify, you know JOURNALISM.”

          I guess you forgot about about Dan Rather’s falsified documents about Bush’s military carrier that the left still claims as truth to this day though if it was forged or the left still claiming that Bush lost in 2000

          Journalism went out the door a long time ago its just that its not just right wing group think anymore its on open display for everyone to see who chooses to see.

          1. It did cost Rather his job though, that isn’t happening on any level today.

  13. Lets think about this for a moment. You have this alleged British intelligence document that says the Russians have all this dirt on Trump and is being shopped to the news media all last summer, but was never published because no one could confirm its veracity. .

    1. If it was shopped to the media, the Clinton campaign knew about it.
    2. If it was legitimate, it was explosive and of great value to the Clinton campaign.
    3. The Clinton campaign therefore had every incentive to confirm its veracity.
    4. The Clinton campaign could have easily authenticated the document by giving it to the White House and having them call the UK and ask them if it was authentic.
    5. So the fact that the Clinton campaign never used this document, is pretty much conclusive proof it is a fake, because if it were real they most certainly would have confirmed that with the British and used it in the campaign.

    This document is only “newsworthy” to the extent that it opens the question of who faked the document and why. Beyond that, it is completely worthless.

    1. No information that has come out wasn’t absolutely true long before the election. None of this is new. So why is it coming out now? Similarly, what was with all of Trump’s female accusers. They all came out in a cluster 3 weeks before the election. It’s hard to be a little conspiratorial and hesitant about all this shit.

    2. Well, she wanted to use the syory, but the “prostitutes” that Trump hired were Chelsea Clinton-Whatever and Anthony Seiner.

        1. Carlos Danger can’t be pinned down by one name.

  14. To give the most obvious example, they should have asked Michael Cohen for comment on whether he had been to Prague at the time the file said he was there, rather than letting us wait til after the piece dropped to see Cohen deny he’d ever been to the city at all.

    To be fair, they were ferocious in their non-asking.

    1. *ferociously does NOT narrow gaze at Crusty*

  15. Does the dossier include the real Obama birth certificate from the Kenyan hospital where he was born? Maybe a few receipts from various Muslim “charities” from Barry dated September 12, 2001? A copy of the doctor’s report on Michelle’s prostate exam? A canceled check from where Hillary bought the gun Vince Foster killed himself with?

    Geez, it’s like these people ain’t even trying. You sneak a little truth in there with your lies and then you’ve got the plausibility argument knocked in the head. Any one of these things would have headed off any suggestion from Trump’s supporters that it’s all made-up bullshit.

    1. If you have never read Legacy of Ashes, you should. It is a tell all history of the CIA. The more I hear about this, the more I am starting to think that only the CIA could fuck up a covert op this badly.

      1. Bay of Pigs: The Untold Story is pretty good, too.

        It’s amazing how arrogant government goons can be when their arrogance comes not only from the power they wield, but a factually unsupported belief that they are competent.

      2. 99.9% of them are beltway bureaucrats.

      3. It had all the earmarks of a CIA operation; the bomb killed everybody in the room except the intended target!
        William F. Buckley, Jr.

  16. Someone commenting on Instapundit had the internet comment of the day today. It was

    Deep State is John McCain’s porn name.

    1. Good one.

  17. “By publishing these accusations, BuzzFeed ended that speculation. More importantly, it allowed everyone to see how dubious this document is, one the CIA and CNN had elevated into some sort of grave national security threat.”

    This may be a real benefit of BuzzFeed publishing the details, but the benefit of that was purely unintentional. BuzzFeed published this stuff to hurt Trump–not to take our intelligence services to task.

    And that’s what I’ve been taking from all of this–that Trump may be correct in his assessment last week that our intelligence services have become highly politicized.

    In fact, when Trump’s people said that, last week, they may have been talking about precisely these details. If i were the incoming President and I’d been given this assessment, and I knew these details were complete fabrications, I’d think our intelligence services were ridiculous and needed to be reorganized, too.

    I certainly don’t believe anything the FBI says just because the FBI says it. Whatever credibility they had, they’ve lost it with me. I want independent corroboration of everything they say. As far as I’m concerned, our intelligence services are neither to be disbelieved nor believed. They’re just to be noted.

    1. If the CIA helped throw this obviously fake shit together, I can understand why he would eschew regular intelligence briefings.

      1. Trump said that our intelligence services had become bloated and highly politicized, last week, and he said that he intended to reorganize things and make operatives go out into the field rather than sit at their desks in Washington.

        http://www.wsj.com/articles/la…..1483554450

        It wouldn’t surprise me if this leak were a reaction to that.

      2. I should add, it also wouldn’t surprise me if Trump thinking our intelligence services need to be reorganized were influenced by his being given the PissGate intelligence assessment weeks ago.

    2. There is part of this that caught my attention.

      CNN didn’t take up this story because BuzzFeed ran some ridiculous memo (which offered CNN an opening to bash Mr. Trump). CNN ran the story FIRST! According to the above quote, BuzzFeed didn’t show this memo (and explicitly stated they couldn’t verify it) until after CNN ran their smear piece?

      Wow, so BuzzFeed is the voice of reason in the modern media?

      Just….Damn!

    3. I’m happy to see that we do have a president elect that will question intelligence reports for a change. it seems all past presidents sucked it up like it was mana from god

    4. Herbert. Fucking. Hoover.

      No, you shouldn’t trust those organizations. The whole reason they exist is a lie in and of itself. Just because the secret police come out into the light, it doesn’t mean they became good. It just means that things are going badly enough for the citizenry that they can operate in the light without being stoned.

  18. It can be remarkably easy to believe the things you already want to believe.

    Oh yeah, smart guy? How about you prove that unicorns don’t exist? You can’t do it, can you?

    1. I tied a virgin to a tree for several hours and a unicorn never showed up.

      Then it got dark and I released him back to the Star Wars convention.

      1. (This is similar to the part of T. H. White’s King Arthur books which Disney *didn’t* turn into a movie: Teenagers used their sister to lure a unicorn, then killed it.)

        1. Oops, I mean spoiler alert.

          1. I don’t think I ever finished the book, but I do remember getting that far.

            1. It was a barrel of laughs, wasn’t it?

              1. It made no impression on me. Honestly, I abandoned the book for failure to hold my interest.

                1. I was going through a King Arthur phase at the time, but even then I thought White’s take was kind of weird. The first part was somewhat whimsical, then it got dark real quickly.

                  And White turned the legends on their heads by making Arthur a Saxon warrior fighting the Celts. It’s like Jefferson Davis fighting to preserve the Union against the Confederate forces led by General Grant.

                  1. Once and future king?

                    Arthur (and Uther) are Normans fighting Saxons. It’s his explanation of why 6th Century Romano-British warlord has tournaments, lances, knights, castles etc. And why Malory wrote what he wrote (Arthur charges him at the very end to do so).

                    The book was weird, but I found it no worse than Malory interpretation. At least from time to time, people notice the gap between what should be the most just, chivalrous etc court in the world and the reality of it.

                    1. Obviously it’s been a while. I remember that there seemed to be a lot of Celt-bashing.

                    2. Which is interesting since Arthur is a Celtic hero.

                    3. Only Celt-bashing I remember was a few comments on the Picts. Blame source material – Malory’s Arthur is as Celtic as I am.

                      Trust me, I prefer Celtic version where Lancelot is absent, Gawain is actually a brave, honorable man, Arthur is more than a vacillating cuckold and a child murderer, and Merlin actually does magic. But, Mort d’ Arthur is what the canon is these days. Fucking Normans, no good ever comes of them.

                    4. Well if you worthless Celt had just been good slaves like you were supposed to, us Normans wouldn’t have had to constantly kill you.

                      (j/k)

                    5. Where’s version of the Arthur story is my favorite. He dispenses with the “historical” Arthur and focuses on the mythical-popular understanding of the stories, which Mallory established. There are some very good vignettes describing medieval society in there, as well.

  19. I would argue – and Reason by its coverage seems to agree – that “shady characters promote dubioius accusations” is a legitimate story.

    To do a story along these lines, of course, it’s necessary to expose the people circulating the derogatory reports, not accepting the reports under a promise of confidentiality and then publishing them without explaining exactly how the reports were generated. Is the latter what happened with Buzzfeed?

  20. It’s not just a question of Michael Cohen denying a trip to Prague, it’s that Michael Cohen was in Los Angeles visiting USC with his son at the time of this supposed trip to Prague, something that USC verified. It’s a claim that was easy to check out, only Buzzfeed didn’t bother to do some basic reporting to check it out and find out that it was bogus. They simply printed it and threw up their hands, saying “Hey, look, we’re not vouching for any of this stuff! We’re just publishing it.” Does that strike you as responsible journalism, Jacob?

    Anyway, the biggest reason I found it hard to buy the report was simple common sense. If Trump’s GOP rivals, and later Hillary, were paying for this stuff as oppo research and yet chose not to use it, doesn’t it seem likely that it’s bullshit? It’s not as if presidential campaigns, especially Hillary’s, are averse to running with dubious accusations. Harry Reid fucking ADMITTED that he lied through his teeth about Romney’s tax returns in 2012. So, this “intel report” was so farcical and obviously bogus that even a bunch of presidential campaigns tossed it into the trash. That’s telling.

    Also, I still don’t buy that it was entirely the work of a British intelligence agent. No Brit calls the World Cup “soccer”, period.

    1. Jacob, Jesse – I’ve heard it both ways.

      1. I too miss Psych.

    2. According to the internet underworld of 4 chan and the The Donald of Reddit This whole thing was created by a person on 4chan who was trying to troll #nevertrumpers of the republican party.
      There are some mentions of a fanfiction like this on 4chan during the day of november 1st. An anon was trying to push something a lot like this and troll them.

      this may have possibly been the greatest troll of all time. The world is waiting for this anon to get verified. If this is true and he gets verified expect the lawsuits to start flying.

      1. If that’s truly what happened, I will NEVER stop laughing about it.

        1. Even if not true, we are at a point where it’s conceivably true. Even if only slightly. 4Chan, the biggest cesspool on the entire internet not completely devoted to pedophilia, is officially part of the national dialogue. They are players.

      2. According to the internet underworld of 4 chan and the The Donald of Reddit This whole thing was created by a person on 4chan who was trying to troll #nevertrumpers of the republican party.

        Take that with even more salt than the dossier.

        1. Actually, this being a 4-chan prank is probably the least damaging thing it could be. I’m hoping that’s all it is.

          1. Least damaging…..unless you’re Rick Wilson.

        2. It says something if 4chan memes and FBI assessments are virtually indistinguishable.

    3. Grab it’s fucking legs!

  21. I think that Buzzfeed has the right to publish whatever they want

    I think I have the right to look at what they publish and determine that not only the story is false but so is Buzzfeed and anyone else associated with this.

  22. In a way, the mistake the scum who authored this made was that they went too far. Obama’s room? Golden showers? Its just so lurid as to be incredible. Just like the Rolling Stone fake rape article, really. If they had dialed it back, if they didn’t live in such a frikkin’ bubble that they lost their ability to distinguish “credible” from “don’t make me laugh”, neither of these would have ever happened.

    1. Grab its motherfucking golden shower.

    2. It also shows that if something comes to them from a source inside the intelligence community they will publish it without a simple fact-check, just like WaPo did with the Vermont power-grid hacking story.

      1. Yes it does. And that is pretty scary. First, it means the IC has the power to manipulate the media into selling any story they want and by extension manipulate the public into supporting things like wars where they would not otherwise. Second, it means you can’t trust anything you read. So that when there really is a threat or an attack on the US, you won’t be able to tell if it is really true.

        These assholes are doing grave damage to the country.

        1. The chances that this is happening without direction from above are about absolutely zero. The Democrats are showing that they are willing to burn it all down to obtain their political goals.

          1. The Democrats are showing that they are willing to burn it all down to obtain their political goals.

            i don’t disagree, but what do you think the ‘political goals’ really are?

            if its merely to tar and discredit Trump… it seems that’s been done 100X over, and there’s zero further benefit trying to throw mud at a guy already neck deep in it.

            1. It’s hard to tell at this point, it’s so deranged. But if I had to guess, they’re trying to tie Trump up with so much crap that the bipartisan Republicans defect and he won’t be able to do anything in his first six months.

              1. It’s anger. Nothing more than manifestations of pure anger.

                Stage II of the grief cycle.

                Reason has already largely moved on to the Bargaining stage but, for the Dems and their media allies I expect this to continue for at least another month or two.

                And it will prove epic.

            2. but what do you think the ‘political goals’ really are?

              They did it for the lulz.

              1. It would be ironic if the Democrats’ motives can’t be distinguished from 4chan either.

            3. I think it’s fairly obvious that the Democrats want an Authoritarian Socialist State and the Republicans want something like a God-King. They both work together to make things more Authoritarian, but they disagree on exactly what form that Authority should appear to be to the proles.

              In a very real sense, both parties need to destroy the country first. The biggest difference, to me, is that Republicans need to keep at least a few bits and pieces like nationalism whereas the Democrats can literally just burn the whole thing down and start again after killing off the opposition party.

        2. So that when there really is a threat or an attack on the US, you won’t be able to tell if it is really true.

          You will first learn of the Russian invasion by looking out your window and seeing a paratrooper division falling from the sky. I doubt you will have the time to gather up your brother and C. Thomas Howell and head to the mountains.

          1. What about when the lights go out because someone has hacked into the power grid?

            1. Then I would point out, in the dark to no one, that it was an awfully dumb idea to hook our power grid up to a line connected to Russia when there is literally no reason to ever do so. You can’t hack what isn’t connected.

      2. if something comes to them from a source inside the intelligence community they will publish it without a simple fact-check

        yeah.

        they also intentionally elide the whole “Why would the intel people brief Trump about this in the first place”

        they briefed him because “its ‘some shit floating around that could be used to smear you’

        which, the media promptly uses to smear him, claiming that its ‘valid’ because the intel people warned him about it.

        iow = its a self-fulfilling prophesy. any bullshit rumour which Intel decides to even look at suddenly becomes “news” by virtue of them even acknowledging it.

        1. The person who leaked the contents of the briefing knew full well what they’d do with it.

        2. The briefing should have been classified. The fact that the outgoing administration is openly sharing and pushing this story tells you all need to know.

          1. This thing was already being passed around before the briefing. So declaring it classified would have had no effect.

      3. The Washington Post has no historical reason to disbelieve anything the intelligence community tells them.

      4. It also shows that if something comes to them from a source inside the intelligence community they will publish it without a simple fact-check, provided it serves their political ends.

        Give them equivalent Clinton Foundation or Obama Birther Certificate dossier and watch the skepticism flare up.

  23. So,Trump has his own ‘Golden Path” .

    1. – a whole lot of Duncans

    2. If the media withdraws its collective dick from the Gloryhole of Narcissus they’ll feel the Gom Jabbar!

      They’re well and truly screwed.

  24. I can’t find the story via google, which is really odd. But instapundit had a link to a Glenn Greenwald piece in the Intercept about these documents. As much as I loath Greenwald’s politics, I have to give credit where credit is due. His article on this is spot on and shows a tremendous about of integrity on his part. Greenwald seems to be the only liberal honest enough to make the point that no matter how much you dislike Trump, allowing the CIA to play politics and put out lies is not the way to attack him.

    1. And Greenwald is right – these farcical, obvious attempts to discredit Trump over bullshit are going to make it much harder to convince the public of malfeasance when Trump’s actual scandals start popping up.

      1. He is absolutely right about that. But what makes me respect Greenwald’s position is not that he is smart enough to see the damage it is doing to his side. That just makes him a smart partisan. What makes me respect him for this is that he understands how stupid and wrong it is to let the CIA try and undermine an election. He seems to be the only Prog who has enough integrity to understand that. And as much as I dislike a lot of his positions, there is no denying he is both right and being principled here.

    2. I can’t find the story via google, which is really odd. But instapundit had a link to a Glenn Greenwald piece in the Intercept about these documents.

      (Whispers.) That wouldn’t be the story I linked to in the post, would it?

      1. Yes Jesse. Its been a long day. But it still doesn’t come up on google very easily, which I find strange.

  25. So Jesse, fuck you for associating a great Beatles tune with pissing on people

    1. R. Kelly was just too easy.

      1. Easy Peesy?

  26. “many people will conclude, with Trump’s encouragement, that large media outlets (CNN and BuzzFeed) and anti-Trump factions inside the government (CIA) are deploying “Fake News” to destroy him.”

    I absolutely loathe the man (consistently for a quarter century now) and that’s my conclusion as well.

    1. I absolutely loathe the man (consistently for a quarter century now)

      Did he fondle you or something in 1992? If you tell John McCain he will pass that information on to the proper authorities.

      1. You are not really anyone if you haven’t been groped by Trump. So of course Trump fondled Voros at some point.

      2. How do you know McCain didn’t already pass that information on? *cue dramatic music*

      3. I don’t like attention whores, and Trump’s just about the worst one of all time. It’s pathological with the guy. He probably likes all of this.

        1. He loves all of this because he is the greatest media manipulator of our time. This is perfect. The media puts up an obviously false and salacious charge and the entire news cycle becomes about Trump and how right he is and how vile his critics in the media are. This is called owning the meta story. And it is what Trump does better than anyone, partly because his critics in the media are so craven and stupid.

          1. But that’s just it: anyone who is not an idiot (and he’s obviously not) knows there’s more to life than all of this nonsense. Why the hell does he need any of this? Why has he ever needed it? There’s plenty of really successful rich people of all political stripes who don’t need a camera trained on them 24/7 for validation.

            It’s such an anathema to me and he’s so omnipresent that it really grates. Kanye West, Lena Dunham, the occasional high school cheerleader: they all have it, and it’s super annoying.

            1. Why the hell does he need any of this?

              Its made him very rich indeed (where do you think the Trump brand came from?), and now the most powerful person on the planet (on account of this is how he beat the Maginot Line of the DemOp Media to win the election).

              Why would he stop?

              1. I would. And that’s my issue: the idea of being the “most powerful person on the planet” and all that comes with it sounds like the purest form of living hell to me.

                And he was already really fucking rich. He got famous for being rich in the first place. He just decided being low level famous was simply not enough for him. He has to be on everyone’s televisions all the time in order to satiate him.

                That’s my problem: I’ve wanted him to go away for a very long time now, and instead he’s cranked it into high gear.

                1. Yup. Just about the highest gear left.

                  Sigh.

                2. But here is the thing…i dont think he really wants to be president. He appears like he is going to give pence some more power than VP currently does. He likes the limelight but then will just delegate.

            2. Why the hell does he need any of this?

              Revenge? A while back I saw a video of Obama roasting him at some event (Press dinner?) and Trump’s facial expression was basically “I’ll rip your tits off”.

              I can imagine him being thin-skinned enough to go through campaign just to stick it to Obama and his coterie.

          2. and it shut down most of the glorification of Obamas parting shot/ speech

        2. I agree, I just found it amusing you added specific time period with your comment.

  27. Meanwhile, there is this.

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

    http://www.politico.com/story/…..ire-233446

    I am sure all of the people claiming to be so concerned about foreign influence in our elections are going to be all over this, right? Bravo to Politico for writing this. I didn’t think they had it in them.

    And I wonder how many wonks and various beltway sleaze pushing the Russians are under every bed theory are on the payroll of the Ukrainians? More than we know I bet.

    1. Politico did all that reporting in half a day? I suspect they were sitting on that story for a while but it was not too relevant not to report now. They likely would have waited longer and released it, if at all, after the Russian hysteria died down.

      1. Yeah, I am sure they could have written this story in October. but somehow waited until after the election. Funny that.

    2. Somehow, I don’t expect the left to be crying “Hillary is a traitor!”

    3. Is it possible Politico hates Hillary as much as we do? Were they BernieBros?

    4. I don’t think there is some sort of conspiracy or conscious effort on the part of the major political parties and media organizations to completely discredit the institution of American government (not the people or even specific agencies, but the institution itself). And yet they seem to be doing just that.

  28. The accusations go much further than the pissy sheets.

    The memos describe several purported meetings during the 2016 presidential campaign between Trump representatives and Russian officials to discuss matters of mutual interest, including the Russian hacking of the Democratic National Committee and Mrs. Clinton’s campaign chairman, John D. Podesta.

    If some of the unproven claims in the memos are merely titillating, others would amount to extremely serious, potentially treasonous acts.

    One of the opposition research memos quotes an unidentified Russian source as claiming that the hacking and leaking of Democratic emails was carried out “with the full knowledge and support of TRUMP and senior members of his campaign team.” In return, the memo said, “the TRUMP team had agreed to sideline Russian intervention in Ukraine as a campaign issue” because Mr. Putin “needed to cauterize the subject.”

    That’s an accusation of espionage and treason. These guys are playing with fire.

    1. with the full knowledge and support of TRUMP

      Is the man’s name an acronym or something?

      1. The
        Russians
        Under
        Mr.
        Putin

        It all makes sense now…

        1. [wipes away tear]

        2. Well done.

        3. *gapes in wonder, stands slowly and begins furious applause*

          1. *Joins applause slowly then with fervor

    2. See, the funny thing is that all claims are discredited by the pissing. Even if some other allegations had truth to them, it’s all going to be viewed dubiously now.

      In their attempt to discredit Trump, they are discrediting themselves. And American democracy simultaneously. They’re doing a better job than Putin ever could.

      1. It is discredited by the fact that the UK government hasn’t confirmed it. This is supposed to be an account of information British intelligence has. If that were true, British Intelligence could confirm it. Yet, they haven’t and didn’t this summer. That is really all you need to know about this document.

    3. That’s an accusation of espionage and treason.

      Is it? Possibly suggestive, maybe, but accusation?

      Treason is pretty clearly laid out in the Constitution* and I don’t see anything about the privileged communications of campaign chairs on one side and non-privileged communications of senior members of a campaign team on the other. Trump didn’t steal the information and nothing you quoted indicates that he aided in its theft in any way. Moreover, there’s nothing to indicate that information stolen and transferred was owned/controlled by the FedGov.

      These definitions of Espionage and Treason would make things like drawing red lines in foreign nations into an exceedingly dicey legal proposition.

      *I’m working under old-timey notions of crime requiring evidence, proof of harm, etc. rather than just shouting loud enough to get a conviction.

    4. is it a crime for any American to meet with other world leaders? if not then how is it Treason and if its illegal how does it fall to the level of Treason except in times of war. we all know that if Obama meet with any world leaders before being elected it would be considered intelligent and insight full and the world would glorify him.

  29. Buzzfeed’s reporting was actually more responsible than CNN’s. CNN made the report sound ominous and serious. They let anonymous sources vouch for the credibility of the former British agent who supposedly assembled it. Without releasing the details, it was impossible for people to fact check or see just how ridiculous the allegations actually were.

    CNN’s story creates the impression that the Russians actually have dirt on Trump. Buzzfeed showing what said dirt supposedly is undermines that notion entirely, regardless of their intent.

    1. That is very true, thought I honestly think Buzzfeed was too stupid to realize that and instead thought they were hurting Trump.

      1. Exactly. If their aim was to allow people to see how silly the report was, BF could have pointed out all the misspellings and grammatical errors, and the presence of outlandish and generally hard-to-believe parts, without actually releasing the raw text.

  30. Think about this, folks: The core of this story involves Trump staying in a hotel suite previously used by Obama, and hiring hookers to pee on the bed. This is all supposedly recorded as blackmail material. However, if the FSB was recording Trump in that room, why wouldn’t they have recorded Obama in the same room?

    Was this a huge Secret Service fail? Is the FSB so stupid that they would record Trump but not Obama? Or is the whole story just a 4chan hoax?

    1. Why would he need to hire hookers to do that? Lots of people would do it for free.

  31. If this were anything but a Walker thread, I’d be tempted to suggest that all of this is likely to blow over and turn into trutherism and birtherism after inauguration–that it will fall out of the mainstream.

    But since this is a Walker thread, I suppose I have to accept that this conspiratorial crap isn’t really a sideshow at all. This is what the mainstream looks like. Average people watch “weird” porn, like the food at McDonalds, and believe in these conspiracy theories, too.

  32. In the eyes of many people, that will forever discredit?render impotent?future journalistic expos?s

    The MSM is already discredited in the eyes of many, and with just cause. NBC, CBS, NYT, WaPo, it’s not just that they’re partisan hacks, it’s that they are bad at it and transparent in their partisan hackery.

    These outlets can’t go bankrupt fast enough, in my opinion

    1. Yeah, the news biz is long overdue for a hard rain of creative destruction.

  33. OH, and another thing. Trump really should launch an investigation of these leaks. Sick Sessions on their asses and use the precedent the Obama administration set with the Espionage Act to find and prosecute these leakers. There’s nothing I’d like more than to see the smug pieces of shit who spent the last 8 years using a 90 year old law meant to stop espionage to go after whistle blowers get a taste of their own medicine.

    1. A dangerous precedent indeed. And to think Donald hasn’t even been inaugurated yet. May derp spring eternal in this new administration.

      1. Be prepared for levels of derp previously believed to exist only theoretically.

  34. Cohen deny he’d ever been to the city at all. BuzzFeed later updated its story to note his denial.

    question for the journalists… when you keep correcting primary facts in your story, when does the “update” become a “retraction”.

    1. Never.

      Unless the story is about a Democrat.

    2. Let’s ask Jann Wenner!

    3. when you keep correcting primary facts in your story, when does the “update” become a “retraction”

      Since they didn’t claim the dossier was true, I don’t think this qualifies as a retraction.

      1. Genius. If the entire story is “fake”, you never have to retract!

      2. A news organization that publishes things that aren’t true, and which they know may not be true.

        There’s a name for that.

        Starts with an F.

        1. Fabloid?

    4. I think Buzzfeed is laying the groundwork for a Trumpian defense to any future defamation cases, namely, no reasonable person would take anything they publish seriously, so they really can’t defame anyone.

    5. He went to Italy. Did the meeting take place there? Maybe they got the country wrong. Newsweek claims Estonian intelligence observed this meeting. Well, can we find out?

      http://www.newsweek.com/trump-…..ion-541302

      In other words, there is more to research her, beyond the unreliability of BuzzFeed or their blunders in handling this, or ditto for Newsweek. You can remain curious about these claims that are so specific and research them. Along the way, you make corrections. That’s not retracting, it’s making corrections.

      1. I believe what you are describing is referred to as a “fishing expedition”, or less charitably as “throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks”.

        Confronted with a salacious and inflammatory story whose few verifiable claims are easily shown to be false, the ethical response is not to try to change those details so the salacious and inflammatory parts look more credible, it’s to throw the entire story out.

      2. Source for his trip to Italy? I did a search at the link you provided and “Italy” is not found.

  35. Final point from me – you also have to seriously question the intelligence of our intelligence agencies. Not just in the sense that they are gathering such crap, but in that Trump is a guy who was on board with giving them everything they wanted and then some. He was completely ok with their infringement of civil rights and domestic spying, but they are apparently so caught up in antagonizing Russia that they are making him their enemy before he’s even taken office.

    1. Which is why this is a good thing in a way. I hope there remains a serious animosity between Trump and intelligence agencies, Trump might just enough of a bull in a China shop to gut those agencies to satiate his personal grudge against them. Next I hope the Federal Reserve tweets out accusations of Trump’s small penis.

      1. I agree it’s a silver lining for libertarians. Progressives may ironically provoke Trump to fulfill Obama’s campaign promises from ’08.

        It’s a long shot, obviously, but he’s a guy who changes positions frequently and makes decisions based on how he feels about you. It’s just dumb and shortsighted on the part of the intelligence agencies.

    2. I think it’s coming from their political masters, mostly. That and Trump has shown he is willing to lampoon them.

      1. True as that may be, I have no doubt that the federal bureaucracy is terrified of a Trump presidency. I hope their fears are well-founded.

      2. The IC is totally non partisan Lee. It is not like an NSA spook ran a false flag third party candidacy with the goal of disrupting the election and throwing it into the House or anything.

  36. I wish media outlets would quit calling this document a “dossier”, just for the effect of making it sound more espionage-y.

  37. Trump keeps proving that he is bullet proof.

    I’ll bet dollars to doughnuts that this is piling up in his enormous head as his ego builds.

    He may be the most power drunk, explosive big government president ever.

    Its going to an entertaining 8 years until Fidel Castro is elected in his wake.

    1. Trump keeps proving that he is bullet proof.

      No, he won’t prove that until the IC escalates to plan B for dealing with enemy Presidents.

  38. I still despise Trump, but damned if he doesn’t make me feel optimistic at this point. (Please don’t ask me who I voted for, please.)

    1. So…who did you vote for?

    2. For whom did you vote?

      1. It’s like I asked for it…Trump, ok? Happy? *commits fake news seppuku

        1. I did what Richard Pryor told me to do; None of the Above.

          Why didn’t I vote for Gary Johnson? Because I couldn’t bring myself to vote for Gary just because he was the Libertarian on the ticket without feeling like I was doing the exact same damn thing as the Republicans or Democrats. At that point, I should just vote Trump and be done with it.

          Also, it turns out I didn’t update my voter information for my new city and I couldn’t be bothered to go through the red tape for vote for Weld. If I were another ethnicity, some might call that disenfranchisement. Sadly, I’m Irish.

        2. No worries, I voted for Gary Johnson, and feel slightly optimistic about Trump firing a lot of government workers, and being more financially responsible (given his nomination of Mulvaney for OMB).

      2. Depends. Is that a lewd preposition?

  39. Before everyone goes off the deep end with “The Media Sucks!!!” crap, it should be noted that none of the MSM outlets published the stuff, even though they could have. Only CNN issued a story that darkly alluded to something. Not even freakin’ NPR mentioned what was in the “dossier”.

    Frankly I think a lot of the bitching about the MSM is from people who just don’t like what they have to say, and not just because it may be biased from time to time. The media publishes stories that people on the right often don’t like to hear, and since journalists in general tend to be better writers than average, they tell stories that sound convincing. But instead of actually rebutting the stories, or – better yet – telling convincing stories of their own, Righties just whine about “biased MSM”.

    1. That is just a defense of buzzfeed. As someone pointed out above, what the media did by alluding to this piece of crap but not actually publishing it was much worse than what Buzzfeed did by publishing it.

      And publishing a fake dossier that was likely provided by a politically motivated part of the IC is horrible behavior on the media’s part. There is no defending the media here.

      1. You mean “the media” as in CNN? Or as in the NY Times, which evidently was responsible enough to not mention it at all? Which one, John? Aren’t they both a part of “the media”?

        90% of bitching about “the media” is just sour grapes that they say and write things that some people don’t like. Well boo hoo. That is a part of their job after all.

        Buzzfeed is just the 21st century version of yellow journalism. It’s hardly a new thing. It is difficult for me to get all worked up over it. Trying to muzzle yellow journalism would cause more problems than it would solve. And trying to lump ALL journalism together as “no better than Buzzfeed” is not justified either.

        1. Ny times has a liberal slant for sure but other than their op-ed columnists (aka krugman) i think they are pretty good for liberal.

          However this election season i think they went off the reservation with all their 24 7 trump pants shitting. There was something different about them versus years past.

        2. 90% of bitching about “the media” is just sour grapes that they say

          So what? Even if that is true, that just means this is part of the 10% that is legitimate.

        3. Dude, I don’t like Trump and I find what the media is doing indefensible, basically printing whatever bullshit the Democrats/IC will leak to them without even the slightest bit of research or skepticism.

        4. Of course, Buzzfeed now gives all the good, respectable media outlets cover for publishing the story.

          See, they’re just reporting that Buzzfeed published the story . . . .

          Good on the ones that aren’t taking this excuse to go with the story, of course.

    2. Actually, I’m seeing people on the left talking like, “Wow! What a scandal! Trump is a pee freak!”

      Just when the left had a chance to be respectable and try to learn how to speak truth to power again, at least across some dimensions, they snatch it back, go pee pee.

      Whatever. Welcome to 2017, when journalists made a New Year’s resolution to double-down on crazy stupid freak.

      1. I am not sure if Trump has a genius for pushing their buttons and making them act bat shit crazy and disgrace themselves or if they have gone bat shit crazy on their own and Trump is just the beneficiary of it. Whatever the case, you are right, the left seems to have no interest in ever being in any way respectable or reasonable. They are all crazy all the time now.

    3. The media was the biggest loser of last year, and looks like in 2017 they are begging for a repeat.

    4. yeah, you’re right. that “Russians hacked the energy grid” was totally professional, good-faith reporting, and its just “Righties” who think there’s anything wrong with WaPo’s current narrative-pumping exercises.

      You totally get it.

      1. There also the every-day hackery, like AP’s fact-check of Trump’s claim that Meryl Streep is overrated yesterday.

        You can’t fucking fact-check an opinion

        1. Well, you can if opinions are facts. And all the right ones are. Duh!

      2. So you’re comfortable with a laptop near the electrical grid controls being hacked by Russians?

        1. Short answer: way more comfortable than I am with the Secy of State conducting official business, including classified emails, on a private email server located in an apartment’s bathroom closet.

          Long answer: Most of the laptops in the world have some form of malware on them, so I don’t really give a care. Of course the later investigation cast strong doubt on whether the malware on that laptop was even delivered by Russians, as opposed to just being of Russian origin but now used by hackers all over the world.

        2. How in the world did John Podesta’s laptop get near the electrical grid?!

        3. 1) the computer in question was not even “hacked”. Malware is not a “hack”. you can attract malware clicking on popup adverts

          2) there was no russian connection and

          3) infrastructure networks don’t exactly run Windows ME and fall apart when DNC hacks hand out their password

          so take a pill, angela landsbury

    5. Frankly I think a lot of the bitching about the MSM is from people who just don’t like what they have to say, and not just because it may be biased from time to time.

      There’s certainly something to this, but its hardly an outlier when our DemOp Media acts as the propaganda wing for certain political movements. Drawing the line on outrage because people “don’t like what they say” (outrage bad!) and “because the media is biased” (outrage good!) is not an easy task, either.

      1. Exactly. If I know somebody lies “from time to time” then I’m sure as hell not believing them, ever, without independent confirmation of what they say.

  40. When I’m in line at the supermarket sometimes I’ll the cover of tabloid mags that allege that Michelle Obama had a huge fight with Obama (there’s that picture of Michelle resembling an angry ape) or that Bill Clinton had a secret sex party. Needless to say Buzzfeed would never print these kinds of stories, EVER.

    We’re psychoanaylizing this because the subject is Trump. Not even the incompetent, left serving media would print some incredulous “woman in rural Michigan gives birth to alien child!” expose. If it has to be printed, then it deserves the easy scrutiny it deserves. The birther issue was raised by a prominent Clinton lawyer and did become organic among the fringe of the right. It was newsworthy.

    Now I realize that smoking gun sites will post police reports of email conversation without commentary or reporting. But at least they cite credible sources. As far I understand this info is just some dossier prepared by a Brit operative hired by an Trump oppo firm. Alarm bells should have rang in the heads of journalists with a grain of integrity. What if big oil funded research to attack Clinton?

    Buzzfeed was either wrong or they pissed on honest journalism. I see no way around it.

  41. I don’t get why WikiLeaks can put out unverified and fake material but Buzzfeed can’t.

    Everything in this dossier should be checked. That work hasn’t even begun. I did some work on trying to verify the Russian internal aspects of it — Cohen denies he was in Prague; well, Kosachev also denies he was, or that he had anything to do with it.

    http://www.interpretermag.com/…..ump/#15919

    But the story isn’t exhausted with just this or that fact-check or Twitter obsession about stamps in passports.

    There has to be curiosity about seeing if maybe some aspects are true, but maybe only dates or names are wrong.

    Dismissing or brow-beating BuzzFeed is not going to close down speculation about Trump’s ties to Russia, and this will likely persist throughout his administration.

    1. Really? If you have a 36-page document making extremely strong claims, presented by someone who has every motivation to lie, and the first few things you check out are completely false — it’s safe to assume the rest is probably fabricated as well. If you insist on checking every claim in every document that comes to light, you’re going to waste a lot of your life verifying that bullshit is bullshit.

      Dismissing or brow-beating BuzzFeed is not going to close down speculation about Trump’s ties to Russia, and this will likely persist throughout his administration.

      That’s a given, because the partisans on the left have so far found it a useful way to justify their planned obstruction of him.

    2. Numerous organizations had this report. McCain, news organizations, the FBI, the Clinton campaign almost certainly if all those people had it — and NOBODY did anything with it even though they had every reason to launch it to stop him earlier if it were at all true. Only BuzzFeed, home of Take a Quiz to Discover your Westeros House published it. It’s a tabloid. Worth no more credibility than the Weekly World News.

      But I guess, if there’s a chance it’s true, we must leave no stone unturned. So, obviously, by the same reasoning, there must be aspects to Pizzagate that are true. It can’t all be false, right? Even if some of it is proven false, the rest of it might be true. We should investigate. There might be something we can’t prove false, so it must be true!

  42. This is likely subterfuge designed to further discredit DNC advocacy networks, formerly known as the news media.

  43. Ladies aaaaand gentlemen! Step rrriiight up! See your most ridiculous preconceptions made manifest in all their righteous glory! It walks! It talks! It crawls on its belly like a reptile!

    More news at 10:00.

  44. It’s OK for BuzzFeed to publish it

    It’s OK for others to tear them apart over being partisan pricks.

    See, it’s all OK.

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