Impeachment

Citing National Security, the Trump Administration Says John Bolton Can't Publish His Book

The attempted muzzling of the former national security advisor is dubious.

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The White House sent a threatening letter to former National Security Advisor John Bolton's attorneys declaring that his forthcoming book, The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir, is a threat to national security and cannot be published.

"Based on our preliminary review, the manuscript appears to contain significant amounts of classified information," wrote Ellen Knight, senior director for records at the National Security Council, in the letter to Bolton's attorneys. "The manuscript may not be published or disclosed without the deletion of this classified material."

The full letter was obtained by CNN's Jake Tapper:

Bolton has indicated that he would be willing to testify at the president's impeachment trial in the Senate, though it's currently unclear whether there are enough Republican senators who will vote to allow witnesses at all. Bolton may have information that is damaging to Trump's defense. As Reason reported previously:

In a book that is soon to be released, Bolton says that Trump held up $391 million in congressional authorized security assistance from Ukraine so he could pressure President Volodymyr Zelenskiy into announcing investigations that zeroed in on Trump's political rivals, namely former Vice President Joe Biden. In December, Trump was impeached by the House on abuse of power and obstruction of Congress in connection with the incident.

The Bolton allegations threw a wrench into the Senate trial as Republicans mull if they want to introduce witnesses and additional evidence after arguments conclude. Lawmakers will need a simple majority to hear new testimony, and Sens. Mitt Romney (R–Utah) and Susan Collins (R–Maine) have expressed that they will likely vote in favor. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R–Ky.) has emphasized the need for speedy proceedings and expressed his desire that no witnesses be called.

Senate procedure is one matter. But regardless of whether Bolton is able to present his information at the trial, it's incredibly suspicious for the White House to seek to suppress the book itself. The administration should not be able to invoke the dreaded specter of "national security" every time someone is prepared to say something that might cause the government embarrassment. This is reminiscent of the efforts to stop whistleblower Edward Snowden from publishing his own book about the federal government's vast ability to spy on U.S. citizens. Knowing that it was unlikely the very power apparatus his book was criticizing would give him a fair shake, Snowden opted not to submit his manuscript for government review, which led a court to rule that the authorities could seize the book's profits.

There are, some legitimate secrets the government has an interest in protecting—the names of intelligence assets, for instance—and it's not wrong for the White House to review a former top advisor's book for inadvertent slips. But there's reason to be deeply skeptical that the White House's concerns are related to these actual, sensitive matters. The president himself recently characterized Bolton's potential testimony as a national security issue along the following lines:

"When [Bolton] knows my thoughts on certain people and other governments, and we're talking about massive trade deals and war and peace and all these different things that we talk about, that's really a very important national security problem," Trump told reporters in Davos, Switzerland.

Bolton knowing Trump's "thoughts on certain people and other governments" may be embarrassing for the administration, but it is not a rational basis upon which to censor him. Too often, national security is invoked to quell legitimate questions about government operations.

Readers should not be deprived of access to Bolton's book. They may end up rejecting its relevance, truthfulness, indictment of Trump—indeed, there are many good reasons to be skeptical of Bolton in general—but that's for the American people to decide, not the national security state.

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  1. LOL

    As dumb as Drumpf is, even he can tell the #BoltonBombshell is the tipping point.

    #ImpeachAndRemove

    1. Sniff… it’s so touching the way you defend your lover. Have you ever considered gay romantic fiction? The way you get all hurt hurt whenever somebody dares criticize Dear Leader. I gotta admit… it’s kind of hot.

      1. Eat shit you commie faggot. It’s time for you progtards to eat a taste of your own medicine.

        Soon you will push too far, and then the gloves come off. Then it’s going to get real fucking bad for you.

        1. You can push as far as you want in me handsome. Glove or no 😉

        2. Bring it nazi, you’ll find you underestimate your opponents just like the originals.

          1. Son, the only thing you’ll ever kill is a box of Ho-Hos.

      2. More arguing with the parody account by the village retard!

  2. Should we have all the editors and publishing staff who’ve already read it arrested?

    1. Nobody in the Trump Administration’s heard of the Streisand Effect?

      So, how long before the whole thing gets dumped at wikileaks or the like, and everybody gets to feel like a Soviet reading Zhivago or the Archipelago in 1977?

      1. Any chance they are counting on it?

        Not a certainty, but Trump does have some experience manipulating the media.

      2. Not long in which case Bolton sees his royalties evaporate. Mission accomplished.

      3. Ok, so then maybe multiple versions get leaked everywhere. That say all kinds of things. Muddying the waters to the lint that no one really knows which one was the version to be published.

        1. Bolton fanfic.

    2. Actually, they wouldn’t be criminally liable. Bolton, on the other hand, would be for revealing it.

      Incidentally, video surfaced today of Bolton giving an interview months ago discussing the Ukrainian phone call and raising no objections at all to it. He noted that one of the subjects of the call was tackling corruption.

      So yeah, Bolton is a liar.

      1. Why would Trump appoint Bolton as NSA?? Is Trump an imbecile??

        1. Nope. But you are. Kill yourself.

          1. I have been wondering why someone purporting to be against endless wars would appoint some of the biggest warmongers to his advisor positions. I appreciate you eliminating the imbecile theory, but what does that leave? Your insight would be greatly appreciated.

            1. Trump has hired people throughout his time in office who have divergent opinions from his own because he appears to like hearing a diverse range of perspectives before making some decisions. He may not agree with someone like John Bolton very often, but that doesn’t mean Bolton wouldn’t occasionally offer valuable advice on an issue. It’s a very CEO-like position to take.

              The problem with Bolton was that he reportedly showed in the Trump administration that he was a cancer who was more concerned about trying to build his own bureaucratic empire, so Trump fired him very publicly and acrimoniously not long after hiring him. Sometimes hiring people you don’t agree with doesn’t work out, especially if they’re extremely different than you on an issue.

        2. I thought the whole good cop/bad cop thing had a chance to work. The problem is that nobody explained to Bolton that the “good cop” was the closer, not the bad cop.

  3. Just subpoena Bolton and his manuscript and notes. Give the lawyers times to read both before they examine Bolton in the Senate.

    And in addition to John “Bestseller” Bolton, subpoena the other two “B”s – Biden Sr. and Biden Jr.

    1. Not the other “B” — The Whistle Blower?

      1. Well, precedent suggests that the whistle blower didn’t testify directly to the Senate in the Clinton impeachment…

        1. whistle blower?

          1. …and by whistle I mean penis.

        2. The difference being there is evidence EC was up to his neck in the corruption in question and not merely having heard about it.

      2. They won’t call the whistle blower–after all no one knows who he is.

        They’ll call Eric Ciaramella to inquire about Adam Schiff’s actions prior to the investigation.

        Because we KNOW that Adam talked with Eric.

        Maybe one of them could help out with this ‘whistleblower’ thing.

        1. The whistle blower is most likely Schiff, who created this fiction of a witness.

          1. Fuzzy Dunlop? Really?

      3. There is no whistle blower. There is an anonymous accuser.

        1. That has been proven 100% accurate.

          1. Actually, no. You are 99% incorrect. And BTW, Eric Ciaramella the anonymous informer should be prosecuted for sedition.

            This entire case comes down to the very first question posed by the Senate. Where there are mixed motives, how do we evaluate? Nobody really has a good answer to this.

            1. He shouldn’t be prosecuted for sedition there is no such crime.

              He could be prosecuted for lying in his whistleblower statement for concealing his contacts with Schiff’s staff when warned all contacts had to be disclosed under penalty of perjury.

              But firing is probably a sufficient remedy. And then the IG should have to explain the changed whistleblower form and the backdating of the changes or he should be fired too.

              And lastly there should be ethics charges against Schiff for both lying about his contacts with the whistleblower, and condoning the lies the whistleblower made about them too. Schiff knew a false document had been presented to his committee and tried to keep it from coming to light.

            2. Oh yeah, don’t name he who should never be named, even though everyone knows who he is.

    2. I think this is great. It gives the senate the information they want while denying Bolton the profits from his book.

      1. I bet Bolton and all of these people that testified were going to split the profits of the book. The money would help perpetuate the Deep State. I just wonder how Hannity was duped by Bolton…he played such a long game to get Trump.

        1. How long did it take your studies to become such a fucking ignoramus?
          Or were you born that way?

  4. And, still, we have not seen a single fucking direct quote from the manuscript itself yet Reason, along with other like-minded progressive media outlets, accepts the game of telephone as gospel.

    1. Apparently Trump does too, since he is trying to ban this book.

      Again, the actions of an innocent man would look very different than Trump’s. And again, one side seems to want to suppress the facts at all costs.

      1. And again, one side seems to want to suppress the facts at all costs.

        This is absolutely correct–we all know that one side refused to allow witnesses and evidence to be presented during the investigation….when witnesses and evidence were SUPPOSED to be presented.

        Hint: it’s the side demanding witnesses and evidence be presented NOW.

        1. ok bub. Not violating the whistle blower protection act is not equivalent to banning books or trying to have a whole impeachment without any witnesses.

          1. The act that doesnt grant anonymity?

            1. You guys would be funny if you weren’t so disgusting.

              You know just as well as I do that the purpose of bringing in the whistle blower was to punish him by making him unable to continue his career in intelligence, a la Valerie Plame.

              Besides, I thought he only had hearsay? So if all the whistle blower had was hearsay, then why do you want him to testify? So you can bring up how he cheated on his wife or anything else to distract from the facts of the matter.

              1. So you’re actually wrong about the law and you’re trying to deflect by pretending that having him testify wouldn’t be proper.

                So you can bring up how he cheated on his wife or anything else to distract from the facts of the matter.

                Only in your feverish fan-fiction mind would you think that anyone would try bringing up that irrelevancy rather than, say, him plotting with other government agents to bring down the President or being attached to Biden.

              2. Trump actually agrees with Plame that Bush lied us into the Iraq War…maybe in 10 years Republicans will vote for George P Bush that believes Trump should have been removed?? Republicans are so stupid.

                1. Republicans are so stupid.

                  I once saw a commenter at Balloon Juice crying like a bitch because plumbers with a diploma made more than he did with a PhD and had almost no student loan debt. I asked him who was the real dumbass–the guy who built a business from scratch employing a marketable skill and with no debt, or the soooper-smart guy with the fancy degree that would be in debt peonage until middle age?

                  In that vein, what does it say that you’ve been getting your asses kicked by these “stupid” people for the last 10 years?

                2. Some. But nothing is worse than a progressive democrat. They’re really not even human. Soulless shitweasels seeking to destroy our republic and enslave the masses to their Marxism.

                  1. Shhhhh! You’ve used at least three of our safety words in one post goddammit!

              3. Do you want me to link to you all the actual whistleblowers who are not anonymous? Or do you want to stop being an ignorant fucktard and realize what reality actually is?

                1. I never said his anonymity was at stake. That ship already sailed. The act protects whistle blowers from retribution, which the farce of having him testify surely was intended as.

                  1. “which the farce of having him testify”

                    Nice of you to admit this is all a farce.

                  2. Your belief is now that being forced to testify under oath is a harm?

                    You’re a fucking idiot.

                    1. It could be harmful to him if his lies are exposed.

          2. What are you gonna do when Trump is acquired in the Senate? Cry more?

            1. We should all be crying for our dead republic.

              1. You should see a counselor.

              2. “We should all be crying for our dead republic.”

                You and she lost, loser. Grow up and quit whining.

              3. The republic died in 1932. You’re just crying over its rotting corpse.

                1. 1932? That ship sailed with the articles of confederation as far as I’m concerned.

                  1. I’m not an anarchist, so I’m not willing to go that far.

              4. ‘our republic’

                Says the lying Canadian, who whines about the popular vote.

                Too stupid to be funny.

      2. The Senate can subpoena Bolton if they care.

      3. Right. If Bolton divulged classified state secrets in order to prepare a draft of this book, it would seem that he is already potentially criminally liable. So bring the charges, Trump.

        1. If, if, if.
          So quit making an ass of yourself, S-P.

        2. Except that you seem to be ignorant of the standard review process. From one of the left’s favorite shitty think tanks:

          https://www.justsecurity.org/54960/comeys-book-prepublication-review/

          It describes the normal review.

  5. Why does the news media do this to itself? If the book does indeed contain classified information, then the letter is perfectly appropriate.

    If it doesn’t, then sure, the letter is improper, but you’re missing a step.

    1. I’m willing to believe either and certainly lean more to the classified information being a bs excuse. Still, it shows clear bias that only the one side of the argument is truly entertained.

  6. Are they blocking printing or are they asking for the removal of classified material with the threat of blocking printing? Pretty certain in these cases authors often have to resubmit the manuscript to exclude classified materials. But I know, it is all because of impeachment and Bolton being the smoking gun.

    1. They appear to be delaying publication until a determination can be made.

      1. It’s a standard procedure in pre-publication review. Materials get held back all the time to remove classified information. People who worked on sensitive projects are actually required to submit their resumes for review before posting them and sending them out for jobs, because it’s so easy to reveal classified information.

        John Bolton worked in a White House-level position in national security and is publishing a tell-all book about it less than a year after he was fired. It’s almost impossible for him to talk about his job in any kind of detail without revealing classified information because so much of what he dealt with is current.

        And despite Robby’s “But I want it” tantrum, there’s good reason to hold classified information from publication and Bolton signed a non-disclosure agreement that obligates him to submit anything he writes to pre-publication review until death in exchange for access to the information he wants to write about. And, last I checked, libertarians were all about the sanctity of contracts.

  7. Oh, FFS, this rises to ‘God is a warm puppy’ level of fallacious reasoning.

    IMO, if Bolton had anything beyond supposition and hearsay, he’d have already leaked it. The guy is a classic swamp critter who knows how to leak the right info to get his book on the NYT bestseller list no matter how boring it is likely to be.

    1. And if anyone knows it’s a nonthingburger it is the Adminstration.

      This is like Obama ‘hiding’ his birth certificate.

  8. For fucks sake, this happens all the time with ex officials seeking tell alls. You can see this with almost any biography for a military leader. That is why the process exists. Teump didnt fucking make up the process.

    1. And the letter wasnt threatening. God damn reason has gone full retard.

      1. But why did Hannity place so much faith in Bolton?? Hannity really failed Trump on this one.

        1. Why do you care what Hannity thinks?

            1. I guess it’s important to him, and to us, in the strawman that lives in his head.

        2. Why do you ask non sequitur I care nothing about?

        3. Clearly you were born from hihn sample at the sperm bank (god we know he spends a lot of time with his hands down his pants). Because he tries to project fox news hosts views onto all of us too.

          Why are you liberals so fucking ignorant and crazed that you need to pretend and rationalize shit like this to make it through the day? You literally rationalize your “enemies” are everywhere just to make yourselves more bitter and miserable.

          And ive just described tds to you.

        4. Hannity is a joke and even most FNC watchers I know agree with that statement. My father, a dedicated FNC watcher (but who also criticizes it’s take quite often) hates Hannity’s show and Hannity’s take. He states the only that was ever interesting about Hannity was when Alan Colmes was still alive and co-hosting the show. Then the debate was sometimes interesting, if for nothing more than watching it for the laugh value.

  9. So, you’ve basically got no reason at all for thinking they’re being dishonest about this, except that you automatically assume the worst about Trump?

    At one time you would have automatically assumed the worst about Bolton, is what makes this particularly ironic.

    1. Well, normal people look at someone’s history with honesty before deciding whether or not to trust them. Trump is probably the most dishonest person in public life. He has had multiple judgements against him for fraud, including defrauding a charity. Why should anyone give him the benefit of the doubt? He has never, and I mean never, demonstrated his patriotism with a selfless act.

      1. “Well, normal people look at someone’s history with honesty before deciding whether or not to trust them.”

        I totally agree with that, which is why I don’t believe a word that Schiff says, including (to steal a phrase) “if”, “and” or “the”.

        1. Good. Now you are getting it.

          1. You’re not Pedo Jeffy. Oh, and how is your NAMBLA cell doing?

      2. Jeff. You’re broken.

      3. This coming from the same fuckstick who was parroting that stupid, NYT/WaPo bobblehead “dedicated public servants” line about the REEEEEEEsistance.

        Guess that moniker doesn’t apply to people “just doing their jobs” if it happens to hurt the case against the Bad Orange Man.

        1. “This coming from the same fuckstick who was parroting that stupid, NYT/WaPo bobblehead “dedicated public servants” line about the REEEEEEEsistance.”

          Not me. I’ve never said anything about the “resistance”. I think whoever wrote that letter are cowards.

            1. We are back to pretending Jeff didnt say what he said for 6 months.

              1. Haha, no shit. He literally used that line and is now claiming he never said it. He also used the boilerplate “Trump has his finger on the nuclear trigger!” cryline that’s been a standard fear-mongering tactic by Democrats since Goldwater.

                1. Weird that the democrats were worried about Donald Trump nuking the world way back in 1964. He was only 18. Guess they had a good crystal ball.

      4. Well, normal people…

        OK good. You can remove yourself from the discussion then. 🙂

      5. Trump is given to “braggadocio”, which is defined as “boastful or arrogant behavior.” It’s not an attractive trait, but he tends to lie about inconsequential things like the size of his inauguration crowd.

        The extent of his lying has been horribly exaggerated by the media, which tends to regard even factual statements by him whose implications they don’t like as “lies”.

        So far I haven’t seen a whopper on the scale of “If you like your policy, you can keep it.”

      6. You claim to have been SF, which means you must have had at least Top Secret clearance. What is the policy in regards to you writing a tell all book? Does it include a requirement to have aforesaid manuscript submitted for review for classified information and if classified information is found, that you have to remove it before publication? Pretty sure that is the policy.

    2. It is astounding.

  10. Here’s Robby’s effort to to maintain access to cocktail parties and achieve clique respectability.
    Poor Robby, you’re already tarred a racist deplorable just like everyone else who isn’t into Critical Theory. No amount of TDS’ing will help you escape the caste.

  11. Behind this vast array of fine upstanding citizens all seeking to do the good and the just, I just can’t help but think someone is acting out of political self-interest.

  12. Great Horny Toads!

  13. OMG! The first book EVER in HISTORY that needed redactions due to classified information.

    Trump should be drawn and quartered for doing what is routine, according to the morons at unReason.

  14. The most awesomest thing about Trump being impeached is the way it has made the Media (including Reason) completely contradict what they said just months earlier — for example, what they thought about John Bolton.

    A year ago Bolton was the NeoCon Devil Incarnate; a living, breathing warmongering monster who could never be trusted to tell the truth about anything.

    Now that people believe he has dirt that could take down Trump he has suddenly transformed into Saint John the Pure, a man whose words and deeds are beyond reproach.

    1. Apparently principles do trump prinipals at Reason.

      The operative one being Anything to Get Trump.

    2. Just because Bolton has really bad opinions doesn’t make him a liar. Trump is a known liar…and every witnesses testimony corroborates Bolton’s manuscript. You do realize Bolton’s testimony isn’t necessary to determine Trump abused his power and needs to be removed because of all of the other testimony??

      1. Schiff is a known liar.
        Nadler is a known liar.
        Pelosi is a known liar.
        Etc.

        So what is your fucking point? The impeachment was witch-hunt bullshit to begin with. Now you expect Trump and the senate GOP to treat the process with dignity and reverence it doesn’t deserve?

        If someone comes at me with a knife, they don’t get to complain and determine how I choose to fight back.

        Democrats can eat shit. In fact, I would look at prosecuting as many of them as possible after this failed coup attempt.

      2. So you missed the video evidence of Boltons original statement on the call and about Trump’s concerns over corruption?

      3. So far, Bolton hasn’t said anything about this, so how can he have lied? About what?

        What we do know is that Bolton is a war mongering opportunist trying to misuse his notoriety and the impeachment process to enrich himself through book sales.

      4. Sebastian Cremmington
        January.29.2020 at 10:21 pm
        “Just because Bolton has really bad opinions doesn’t make him a liar…”

        Yep. He’s a liar because he lies. That should be simple enough to even you to understand.

        1. Yep. Especially since he is on tape as saying he has no compunction about lying if he thinks it would further his view of the national interest. But we all know the national interest almost invariably dovetails with what our personal preferences are.

          I always liked John Bolton and really I’d like to see a simulation sometime of what would have happened if we nuked everyone he thought we should nuke when he thought we should nuke them. But in this reality I’m glad we haven’t nuked anyone since ’45.

    3. Now that people believe he has dirt that could take down Trump he has suddenly transformed into Saint John the Pure, a man whose words and deeds are beyond reproach.

      No one is actually saying this, of course.

      Liberals recognize that Bolton cares about Bolton. He didn’t speak up earlier in the impeachment process because he wanted to protect book sales. He’s probably not hugely happy about the leak now because it spoils the big reveals in his book, either. Regardless of whether the Senate subpoenas him, he can still be subpoenaed by the House, and he can say everything he knows on just about any news network. That’s what he’d do if he were honorable about this. But no, he just cares about himself.

      That’s different from saying whether we have reason to believe that he’s telling a clear-eyed version of what he himself witnessed and spoke about with Trump. We have seen no reason to think that Bolton’s account is mistaken, and it’s already been corroborated by Fiona Hill’s testimony. Meanwhile, we have plenty of evidence showing how Trump has abused classification and leaned on the DOJ in order to prevent leaks of embarrassing information. Forced to choose whom to believe, who would you choose?

      1. Bolton is very happy about the leak because it happened just after his book went on pre-sale.

        Bolton has not given an account at all so far.

        Bolton should be forced to testify by the House, and his book sales should be stopped until after the election.

  15. Which page numbers would need to be redacted? Gag orders like this always look stupid because there’s no way to deduce whether they are legitimate.

    Am I the only one left assuming that no government official, left or right, can be trusted to keep secrets? When is the last time you heard about a leak of information that really deserved to be kept secret and wasn’t just the subject of an aggressive ass-covering?

    John Bolton may be the swampiest hawkiest jackbootiest gubbmint critter to ever crawl out of a dark crack beneath a toilet and a rusty drain pipe but if he’s shoveling partisan muck then one of two things is true: it’s flat out lies and there’s no good reason to censor it or it’s true and there’s no good reason to censor it.

    1. Bolton behaved like a jerk and this is payback. That’s all.

  16. It’s totally believable that Trump and Co. would never stoop to using national security to suppress the publication of a book that makes Trump look like a bumbling traitor.

    1. What’s wrong, “dedicated public servants just doing their jobs” doesn’t apply if it hurts the case against the Bad Orange Man?

    2. Can you point out the political appointees in the office of ethics at the NSC that Trump has control over? K, thanks.

      1. Reports coming out that vindmans brother yevgeny works at nsc and is the one “leaking” to the nyt.

  17. Are you autistic? Of course there is no national security reason to halt publication of the book. But Bolton behaved like a jerk and this is payback. And the WH has the right to do this. Bolton can sue and publish his book in about a year, if anybody still cares.

    1. There might be a reason. Hence the review process. Which could take……..six, maybe eight months?

    2. So abuse of power. Which you have no problem with, apparently.

      1. It’s the smoking gun you’ve been waiting for!

      2. Yeah: Bolton abused his prior government position to enrich himself, interfere in the impeachment process, interfere in the 2020 election, and have a vendetta against the president. You bet I have a problem with that. You apparently think all of that is alright.

      3. De Oppresso Liber
        January.29.2020 at 11:37 pm
        “So abuse of power. Which you have no problem with, apparently.”

        Are the walls closing in, scumbag? Is this the tipping point? Perhaps the beginning of the end? Of you fucking idiotic comments?

      4. You keep asserting your opinion is fact, but a number of very educated and intelligent people have come to a completely different conclusion. Just because you assert it was abuse of power, doesn’t make it so. The facts, as seen by many people with far more knowledge of the law then I have, have drawn a different conclusion. My personal opinion is that it was a bad move by Trump (because he knew the media would paint any investigation into Biden as politically motivated), but the idea that the President can’t have a possible political rival investigated is a precedence that scares me more than anything Trump may have done in this case. The bottom line is that withholding funds to compel a foreign government to do something that can be seen as benefiting a sitting President is pretty much par for the coarse and that asking a foreign government to investigate alleged crimes that occurred in their jurisdiction is normal procedure, the only question is can a sitting President investigate a potential political rival? And what is the precedence we set if you answer no.

  18. They also ceased all the profits from Snowden’s, so it’s not like anybody has a reasonable expectation of freedom of the press anymore. ????‍♀️

  19. John Bolton. Back again.

    The ‘stache. Unstoppable. No weapon known to man can defeat it.

    From the depths he arises again. From the sea he comes to once more challenge the order.

    The ‘stache crawls down. Replicating.

    A force of nature. Truth no longer matters. Have we deceived ourselves or is Boltzilla deceiving us.

    History shows again and again
    How nature points out the folly of man
    Godzilla!…

    https://youtu.be/TvQWBXJOgAI

    1. Only Stossel could out stache him!

  20. You know what other guy with a mustache really wanted his book out there?

    1. Gene Shalit?

    2. Tom Selleck?

      1. Salvador Dali. Oh, wait! “Book”.

  21. “The White House sent a threatening letter … John Bolton’s attorneys declaring that his … book … is a threat to national security and cannot be published.

    “Based on our … review, the manuscript … contain[s] …classified information,” [and] may not be published or disclosed without the deletion of this classified material.”

    Your headline and first paragraph contradict the second paragraph, putz.

    They are not preventing the publishing of his book (I celebrate the no-talent ass clown’s entire catalog). They are preventing it from being published without removal of the material he isn’t allowed to publish.

  22. Report from the trenches:
    Very long dinner in SF, 4 couples. One I know to be a Bernie Boy, most others likely SF libs, two not nearly so afflicted.
    Thoroughly enjoyable conversation(s), all the way around the table; how the world’s economy has improved over the lives of those involved (some under 50, and not US-born), shared reading material, business/construction news, the SF gov’t (Willie Brown ‘protege’) busted for corruption, some more personal stuff.
    Not one word regarding the impeachment. No suggestion that it not be discussed. Not a hint nor any retracted comment, nor any silences. No awkward glances, simply like it did not exist.
    Nixon’s problems were the only subject of conversation in the early ’70s; Clinton’s behavior and impeachment could not be ignored in discussions in ’98.
    It seems pretty obvious that the D’s decided to impeach Trump along about 11/9/16, and have spent the intervening time trying to find a crime worthy of the desired punishment.
    Failing that, they settled on the late library book return and some unpaid parking tickets, which passed by a strictly partisan vote in the house. While that’ll convince Pelosi (who doesn’t have to worry about her seat), it has yet to even provoke much enthusiasm among SF hoi poloi. not to mention those Ds who might not be so comfortable.
    ‘As the sun sinks slowly in the west, we bid a fond farewell to…’

  23. Hate to rain on everyone’s parade, and I’ll admit I have waded my way though all the comments. But this is a pretty standard form letter advising some info can’t make it into the public domain which is reasonable considering Bolton’s position. The letter also goes on to say they’re happy to assist the editing process so as not to delay publication. Finally, look at the date. It was issued three days before the NYT leak. So really there is there there.

    I’ll now retreat to my corner and await the forthcoming abuse.

    1. As you pointed out, the letter came from the NSC before the leak actually happened, so I wouldn’t be surprised if one of the NSC’s REEEEEEEEsistance members went ahead and sent out that part specifically related to the impeachment after the letter was sent.

  24. Hate to rain on everyone’s parade, and I’ll admit I have not waded my way though all the comments. But this is a pretty standard form letter advising some info can’t make it into the public domain which is reasonable considering Bolton’s position. The letter also goes on to say they’re happy to assist the editing process so as not to delay publication. Finally, look at the date. It was issued three days before the NYT leak. So really there is there there.

    I’ll now retreat to my corner and await the forthcoming abuse.

    1. Khrushchev also had a terrible time getting his memoirs published. The Kremlin was aghast at the idea of the disclosure of information and even offered to help in the editing out of sensitive information. Eventually they were published outside the USSR and the book suffered from the lack of authorial involvement.

  25. Editor’s Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses…. Read more

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  27. If it’s a halfway decent book it does have classified and/or privileged information in it. Only if it’s worthless then it’s publishable as is.

    Think about it, here is one example: Trump just announced this week a new Mideast peace plan, they had to have been working on it for quite a while. If Bolton gives any information on it, like fallback provisions, Israeli counter proposals, Saudi, Jordanian, or Egyptian contributions or private discussions with moderate Palistinians it could affect ongoing US diplomatic efforts. If it doesn’t have any inside info like that, why read it?

    1. Good point. It’s not like Bolton hasn’t been on TV thousands of times giving his perspective. And it’s always the same perspective, so a book full of that would be boring.

  28. But regardless of whether Bolton is able to present his information at the trial, it’s incredibly suspicious for the White House to seek to suppress the book itself.

    This is a deliberate misstatement. The WH is suppressing nothing.

  29. The impeachment fiasco is an enormous waste of time and money. Republican senators will not vote to remove the President. End of story.

  30. So is this satire? The Babylon Bee is less satire than Reason

    Of course conversations between the National Security adviser and the president may be classified, duhhhhhh!

    They will suppress the book until th eedits are made, once again duhhhhhh!

    And Robby is relatively sane versus the rest of the staff.

  31. I mean gee Charlie Brown did you ever think the timing of this all may be a stunt, with Bolton playing the Blasey Ford role.

  32. I think you’re jumping the gun here. You literally said it’s normal for WH to review a book like this and they’re saying don’t release it as is, but you immediately forget what you just said about why it’s normal to review a book.

    “There are, some legitimate secrets the government has an interest in protecting—the names of intelligence assets, for instance—and it’s not wrong for the White House to review a former top advisor’s book for inadvertent slips.”

    Do tell; if an intelligence asset was involved, why would the WH say anything? The act of admission itself compromises the asset.

    As for your second theory that this pertains only to Trump’s opinions of other leaders, I would certainly entertain an argument that such opinions are a matter of national security. America in general must often deal with bad-faith actors internationally. Revealing the President’s real thoughts and approach to such people could easily sabotage American interests.

    1. Is it really the duty of the Whitehouse to read and check manuscripts like this? I would have thought that another part of the government would be given menial tasks like this, leaving the Whitehouse to do more important work.

      “Revealing the President’s real thoughts”

      If these real thoughts were classified, there might be a problem. Otherwise, they are fair game.

      1. I honestly don’t know if it’s their duty but whoever is supposed to review it, I just wanted to give the benefit of the doubt because I don’t like the idea of foreign governments knowing what we’re up to.

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  34. Hilarious. Just hilarious reading these comments.

    If, in an alternative universe, a President Hillary had been impeached, and, while her impeachment trial was being conducted in the Senate, she attempted to block a tell-all book from a former advisor which said relevant and critical things about her, on flimsy “national security” grounds, there is not a single commenter here who would be giving her the benefit of the doubt. Every single person here would be stating “WHAT IS SHE HIDING?????” But because the pro-Trump people here have their own version of TDS going, they will grant him extraordinary leeway that they would never ever ever ever extend to any other politician, not even other Republicans.

    It is simply sad how Trump has robbed the critical thinking skills and integrity of so many people here, that they are willing to simply follow and become his mindless zombie sycophants.

    I yearn for the day when Trump is finally gone, then maybe we will have libertarian-minded people who are actually skeptical of ALL politicians wielding power, and aren’t willing to grant special exemptions to The Orange One.

    1. If, in an alternative universe, a President Hillary had been impeached, and, while her impeachment trial was being conducted in the Senate, she attempted to block a tell-all book from a former advisor which said relevant and critical things about her

      Hey, dumbshit, as a more intelligent commenter than you stated above, the letter came out three days before that part of the manuscript was leaked to the press, and these reviews are standard for someone who worked in a highly classified environment where–guess what?–the presence of TS info would be common.

      Maybe you should read the actually fucking letter instead of jerking yourself off to more Orange Man Bad feelz.

  35. It is simply sad how Trump has robbed the critical thinking skills and integrity of so many people here

    Said the guy who didn’t read the fucking letter and apparently can’t read a calendar, either.

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